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Posts tagged “Terminator

Bill Paxton R.I.P

bill-paxton-near-dark-vampireThe actor Bill Paxton, who was 61, has died due to complications from surgery, according to a statement from a representative of Paxton’s family.

“A loving husband and father, Bill began his career in Hollywood working on films in the art department and went on to have an illustrious career spanning four decades as a beloved and prolific actor and filmmaker,” read the statement, in part. “Bill’s passion for the arts was felt by all who knew him, and his warmth and tireless energy were undeniable.”

That warmth earned Paxton a career that began in B-movies, experimental film and music videos, moved through bit parts in big pictures and, ultimately, leading roles. The epitome of a working actor, he described to The Los Angeles Times his on-screen presence as that of “a very straight-looking guy, very old-fashioned.”

“I consider myself an everyman, and there will always be an underdog quality to my stuff,” Paxton told Cosmopolitan magazine in a 1995 interview.

Paxton often found a way to make these roles his own. One memorable moment? As Pvt. Hudson in James Cameron’s film “Aliens,” Paxton’s desperate, defeated whine after a spaceship crash became a catch-phrase: “Game over, man! Game over!”

Born William Paxton in Fort Worth, Texas, the actor was the son of a hardwood salesman and, he told “Fresh Air” host Terry Gross in a 2009 interview, expected that he’d follow the same path. But after taking theater classes in high school, Paxton made a decision to become an actor.

He relocated to Los Angeles when he was in his late teens. One of his first gigs was at New World Pictures as a set designer for famed B-movie producer and director Roger Corman on the Angie Dickenson movie “Big Bad Mama.” A year later, he acted in “Crazy Mama,” a New World production directed by a young Jonathan Demme.

The actor continued with set design gigs while making inroads in front of the camera. Early appearances included a starring role in “Fish Heads” (1980), a cult-classic novelty video for the music duo Barnes & Barnes, which Paxton directed and that aired on “Saturday Night Live.”

Paxton played a blue-haired punk rocker in an opening scene of “The Terminator,” a role that led to a friendship with director James Cameron and jobs in “Aliens,” “True Lies” and “Titanic.” Paxton’s acclaimed turn in “Apollo 13,” further confirmed the actor’s abilities.

He was fantastic as the trashy vampire in “Near Dark” scene stealing as the scary, and comic relief, Severin.

“Every day you’re taking a final exam as an actor,” Paxton told the late film critic Roger Ebert in 1998, while discussing his work in “A Simple Plan.”

As Hank in “A Simple Plan,” Paxton harnessed his average-Joe demeanor in service of a career-defining role alongside Billy Bob Thornton. After their two characters find millions of dollars in the woods, Paxton’s Hank endures hardships that reveal the ways in which good men can do bad things.

“I don’t play my characters with any judgment,” he told Gross. “I don’t think it’s possible to play any character with judgment.”

The actor carried that philosophy into one of his most notable performances, as Bill Henrickson in “Big Love.” As the polygamist patriarch, Paxton played a husband juggling family, work and spirituality — with three wives, a half-dozen children and a sect-wide family feud.

When “Big Love” concluded, Paxton told The Los Angeles Times’ Mary McNamara that he faced a hurdle. “It was the only steady job I’ve ever had as an adult,” he said. “But then nobody knew really what to do with me.”

As was always the case, though, Paxton found work. He earned an Emmy nomination in 2012 for the miniseries “Hatfields and McCoys,” and had a recurrent role in the TV series “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”

Paxton was starring as Det. Frank Rourke in the first season of the CBS series “Training Day.” The 13 episodes finished shooting in December, with nine still set to air.

CBS and Warner Bros. Television praised Paxton’s work in a statement issued Sunday morning.

It read, in part: “Bill was, of course, a gifted and popular actor with so many memorable roles on film and television. His colleagues at CBS and Warner Bros. Television will also remember a guy who lit up every room with infectious charm, energy and warmth, and as a great storyteller who loved to share entertaining anecdotes and stories about his work.”

Paxton is survived by his wife, Louise, and two children, James and Lydia.


Terminator: Genisys

The Terminator franchise has been Star Trekked: The first trailer for Paramount and Skydance Productions’ summer 2015 reboot reveals how the time travel sci-fier, starring Game Of Thrones‘ Emilia Clarke as Sarah Connor and Jai Courtney as Kyle Reese, isn’t quite a reboot or a sequel but an alternate timeline shake-up of the familiar Terminator lore. All thanks to Arnold Schwarzenegger, who’s back (again) and here plays a Terminator sent from the future who raises a young Sarah and warns her of the impending robot apocalypse. Jason Clarke, Matt Smith, Byung-Hun Lee, and JK Simmons also star for director Alan Taylor. Terminator: Genisys opens July 1, 2015.


Audition – American Remake…

audition_posterI don’t understand how this will work but Terminator, Rambo, and Basic Instinct exec producer Mario Kassar is assembling an English-language adaptation of Audition, the infamous 1997 novel by Japanese author Ryu Murakami about a lonely widower who gets more than he bargains for when he puts out a fake casting call to find a new girlfriend. Audition was, of course, adapted in 1999 into a cringe-inducing cult film in its own right by Japanese helmer Takashi Miike. The new Kassar-produced version is based on the original Murakami novel and will transplant the story to an American setting.

In this version, to be directed by Richard Gray, Audition‘s unlucky protagonist is Sam Davis, who lives alone with his son following the death of his wife seven years prior and is convinced by a filmmaker friend to stage the fake auditions. The former ballerina with a mysterious past he falls for is now named Evie Lawrence, but otherwise details fall closely in line with Murakami’s best-seller.

Gray adapted the script and will tackle a fall shoot for Audition after filming wraps on his current project, thriller Sugar Mountain starring Jason Momoa. He also helmed and produced the Justin Long crime thriller The Lookalike, which Well Go USA is releasing this summer. DEADLINE.


Sci-Fi Corporation Mugs

Sci-Fi_MugsEnjoy your afternoon cup of tea in one of four mugs inspired by futuristic corporations from Aliens, Terminator, Blade Runner and Robocop. If anyone wants to buy me one (or all of them!), they’re available along with a lot of other nerdy goodies HERE


Friday the 13th the Series… Again

Friday-the-13th_Jason-Voorhees_by_Ytse80Jason Voorhees is ready to slash his way to small-screen stardom. Emmett/Furla/Oasis Films and Crystal Lake Entertainment have set a deal to produce a new hour-long dramatic series based upon the characters and settings of Friday the 13th. That’s average news, not sure how this would play out… bad news is that Sean S. Cunningham, who helmed the 1980 original, will be executive producer along with EFO Films principals Randall Emmett & George Furla, Mark Canton of Atmosphere Entertainment MM, Steve B. Harris of Diversion3 Entertainment, and Ted Fox of Fox Entertainment. Also producing is Horror Inc. president Robert Barsamian, who produced the features… That’s an awful lot of ‘interference’ from a production standpoint, it looks bad already.

Bill Basso (Terminator) and Jordu Schell (Avatar) have been set to script a storyline that re-imagines Jason in multiple time periods. Roy Knyrim (Gods And Monsters) of SOTA FX will coordinate the special make-up effects for the series. If you recall, the original was set at a summer camp, closed because of the drowning of an unattended child. Promiscuous counselors tried to re-open the place, but they began dying. Jason actually took root as the indestructible villain in the second film, with his signature hockey goalie mask coming later. The series is contemporary, focusing on the eclectic characters of Crystal Lake who are forced to confront the return of the killer, as new secrets about his wacky family are revealed.

“Jason Voorhees is synonymous with the genre and we plan to build on this legacy with a provocative and compelling take that expands upon the storylines that have already thrilled millions worldwide,” explained Cunningham. Said Barsamian: “Expect the show to take viewers in some exciting new directions that we’re confident will not only excite existing fans of Friday The 13th but also attract new audiences to the situations and characters that inhabit the small town of Crystal Lake.”

Credit where it’s due, Cunningham made the original Friday the 13th, however that movie apart, Cunningham has never understood Jason, he’s never understood why he worked or why he was so popular. Since his return to the franchise he’s done two of the worst series movies in Jason Goes to Hell and Jason X. What he’s always wanted to do and fail at, is make over-sexed-teen comedies. This is a money grabbing exercise… again.


Terminator – The TV Series

Terminator-Arnold-as-TerminatorIt was inevitable… Skydance Productions and Annapurna Pictures, the companies behind the upcoming Terminator film trilogy, are expanding the franchise to television with a TV series to be done in conjunction with the first rebooted Terminator film slated for release in 2015. The series will be written and exec produced by Zack Stentz and Ashley Miller (X-Men: First Class, Thor), with the writers of the upcoming Terminator movie Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier serving as executive producers.

The series will follow a critical moment from the original 1984 Terminator movie, taking it in a completely different direction from the film. Plot details about the forthcoming Terminator movie are being kept under wraps, but it too is expected to be tied to the first movie. As the rebooted film trilogy and the new television series progress, the two narratives will be designed to intersect with each other. (Thus the head-on involvement in the series of the new film’s writers Kalogridis and Lussier.) For now, Paramount, which is Skydance and Annapurna’s partner on the feature trilogy, is not involved in the TV series, but that could change down the line. Paramount is returning to television, recently relaunching a TV division.  Skydance too recently expanded into television, landing The Manhattan Project, on WGN America. The companies’ plan to intertwine the narratives of movies and TV series is reminiscent of Marvel’s efforts with Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. and movies like Thor and The Avengers – but on a bigger scale. Imagine attempted to do something as ambitious with the adaptation of Stephen King’s Dark Tower, which was envisioned as a movie trilogy with TV series bridging the films, but the project didn’t get off the ground. The Terminator TV series will be produced by Megan Ellison of Annapurna and David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and Marcy Ross of Skydance.

The blockbuster Terminator franchise, which has earned more than $1 billion at the worldwide box office, has spawned a TV series before: Fox’s 2008Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. Casting of the Sarah Connor role in the upcoming film is now underway, with Arnold Schwarzenegger booked for a return as the title character. Stentz and Miller also wrote the upcoming films Starship Troopers and The Fall Guy. Their series credits include Fox’s Fringe.


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Time Travel in the Movies

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