Ben Affleck

Ben Affleck in GONE GIRL

You can have your Paul Thomas Andersons and Terrence Malicks, your Richard Linklaters and Friedberg/Seltzers. For my money the most consistently fantastic and exciting director working today is David Fincher. Even perceived “bottom tier” Fincher thrillers (Panic Room, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) are better than a large percentage of other suspense films out there, and it’s his work that I most look forward to every couple years. His latest is once again an adaptation of an immensely popular novel, but unlike Stieg Larsson’s Nordic thriller Gillian Flynn‘s book lacks a distinct visual style that plays so well into Fincher’s wheelhouse. The film, scripted by Flynn herself, is a mystery set in suburban America that follows a man’s (Ben Affleck) attempt to find his missing wife (Rosamund Pike) and convince the world that he’s not somehow responsible. Check out the first trailer for Gone Girl below.

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Gal Gadot

Fast & Furious actress Gal Gadot is already nailing down the boldness she’ll be expected to impart in her role as Wonder Woman in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel sequel, as she’s straight up dropping big info on her role as the iconic Amazonian; at least so far as cash and contracts are concerned. Via Batman-News, in a story reported on Good Evening With Gai Pines, a show in Gadot’s native Israel, we learn that Warner Bros will be ponying up $300,000 for her first appearance alongside Henry Cavill’s Superman and Ben Affleck’s Batman. What’s more, we get a solid starting date for filming, with Gadot saying the Man of Steel sequel gets rolling in May of this year. As noted previously by Variety, the film’s release date has been pushed to May 6, 2016.

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Ben Affleck in Gone Girl

If you’ve so far resisted reading even just one of author Gillian Flynn’s bestselling novels, now is probably the time to give in and give over to the twisted charms of any of Flynn’s three books and get sucked into her cleverly engineered worlds, especially since you’re about to be inundated with all sorts of material from the David Fincher-directed take on her most recent novel, “Gone Girl.” Fincher’s version of Gone Girl features an interesting and varied cast of talents (which is a nice way of saying that I’m not entirely sold on a few of his picks), including Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Missi Pyle, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry, Casey Wilson, Patrick Fugit, Scoot McNairy, and Carrie Coon, and it attempts to translate Flynn’s complicated story of a young wife (Pike) who goes missing and what that means for her embattled husband (Affleck). As is the case with all of Flynn’s works, it’s difficult to truly explain what the film is about without giving a whole mess of stuff away. It’s best to spout off a common-sounding storyline, and pair it up with the assurance that it’s only a tiny bit of a big, dark, winding, insane iceberg. Basically, Gone Girl sounds like a TV movie – and it’s not. This is pure Fincher territory. The new film also boasts a script from Flynn herself – one that the author has apparently already sliced and diced up into something new, making her old third act disappear right along […]

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Ben Affleck in Gone Girl

Now that 2013 is coming to a close, let the opening salvo of 2014 be a slew of furrowed brows. In the first looks for their upcoming roles, some of 2013′s most talked about actors look very concerned. Two of them may be concerned because they are taking on roles for major names in the field of directing. Ben Affleck can be seen in the first still from David Fincher’s drama Gone Girl, while Christian Bale is playing Moses is Ridley Scott’s upcoming epic Exodus. And while master detective and part-time dragon Benedict Cumberbatch may not be getting the same directing pedigree in The Imitation Game, he does get to play famed codebreaker Alan Turing for the immensely talented Morten Tyldum, who directed the underseen Headhunters. All in all, there is great cause for concerned glances as we gaze upon these first looks.

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Superman Batman and Wonder Woman

There’s a wacky political theory (hear me out and stop yawning) that commercials for presidential candidates don’t actually do anything. The thinking is pretty simple: since commercials only increase name recognition, and the people running for the highest office already have a metric ton of name recognition, candidates spend hundreds of millions to move the needle not at all. Strangely, no campaign has ever had the brass buttons to give us a real-world test of the theory. The movie studio corollary is fairly simple to spot — particularly in an age where the name of your franchise is theoretically far more important for your movie’s potential popularity than the name of the actor playing the part. We’re in a post-star era, but the extent of actors’ diminished effect on bringing in fans isn’t really clear, leading to an important franchise question. Would it really matter who played Superman? Batman? Wonder Woman? Katniss? That Sparkly Vampire Guy? Actors have already caught on to the phenomenon and capitalized on it by extending their profiles into the independent world, going as far as ensuring financing for small films that otherwise wouldn’t be made without them. Best of all, they do this without risking their “personal brand” as “big time movie stars” at all. In that sense, the shift has been freeing, and it can be freeing for studios, too, as they become more comfortable choosing from outside the same 10-name list for higher profile roles. In the best case scenario, it’ll give directors […]

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Look, I know we all love Batman. His cool gadgets. His imposing figure. The way he dresses like a diminutive winged mammal and punches people in the head. And with the latest non-LEGO incarnation of the caped crusader still a few years away, things can be a little tough sometimes. We all need our coping mechanisms- maybe revisit earlier Batman films, pick up a comic book or swallow fistfuls of gravel in an attempt to sound more like Christian Bale.

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tumblr_ms73qvp9FH1scyzygo1_1280

Click here for more Film Jockeys, a webcomic for movie geeks by Derek Bacon

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review runner runner

Richie Furst (Justin Timberlake) was a Wall Street hot-shot once upon a time, but when the economy tanked so did his job. Now he’s forced to attend Princeton on his own dime which is an untenable situation as he only has 170,000 dimes to his name. He lights upon the genius idea of gambling his $17k into enough to cover tuition on an online poker site called Midnight Black, but while he’s a financial whiz and a Texas Hold’em master he’s shocked when he loses it all to another player. Suspecting foul play he has the data analyzed, and sure enough, he’s been cheated. So he packs his bags and flies off to the absolutely and completely corrupt nation of Costa Rica where Midnight Black’s CEO, Ivan Block (Ben Affleck), resides outside of the United States’ jurisdiction. Furst finagles some face time, shares his accusation of the site’s malfeasance, and is promptly offered a job with the company. What job? Not important. All of his financial dreams are coming true, but the whole endeavor is threatened by the love of a bad woman (Gemma Arterton), the faults of a weak father (John Heard), and the actual threats of a rogue F.B.I. agent named Shavers (Anthony Mackie). Also, crocodiles. Runner Runner is a movie made by people who’ve seen other movies and thought to themselves, yeah, I can do that. It manages to be both convoluted and simplistic, busy and ultimately empty, and it does it all with expository narration that […]

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loki_cookie

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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Runner Runner

Before he dons the Batman costume and endures the rage of thousands of confused and disgruntled fans who are outraged they weren’t consulted about a studio’s casting choice, Ben Affleck will be playing a different kind of billionaire. In Brad Furman‘s Runner Runner, Affleck is the head of an online poker company that is apparently located on the world’s most ominous tropical island. Here, he meets with average not-30-year-old college student Justin Timberlake, who has decided that gambling via online poker would be the smartest way to pay off his student loans. When that plan goes sour and he loses all of his money instead, he flies to Spooky Island to meet with Affleck. Check out the clip below:

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Batfleck

Try to picture this: it’s ten years from now, and Ben Affleck has shaken off the hatred he earned for signing up to play a superhero by carefully choosing his acting and directing projects. In a rebound of public opinion, he’s delivered several trenchant performances — fulfilling the potential he showed back in the 90s — and crafted several prestigious films that prove his salt as a storyteller. With that, welcome to 2013, Daredevil haters. It’s good to have you here.

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rejectrecap082413

This will go down in non-history as the week fanboys told Hollywood to argo fu… Actually, the fanboys are apparently doing more than just complaining and burning the Hollywood sign in effigy this time. There’s a petition on Change.org with more than 30,000 signatures. Just imagine if in this increasingly (faux) democratic entertainment industry that the public managed to pull enough sway to actually cancel a major studio casting choice. I presume Warner Bros. would pass on the bill in the form of a mandated crowdfunding campaign in which every signer of that petition has to pledge at least a buck towards buying Ben Affleck out of the presumably already filed contract they’ve made for him to do not only Man of Steel 2 but a number of other Justice League franchise films. Ten bucks if they want a souvenir t-shirt. Well, that portrayal, if nobody stops it, is two years down the line. Let’s focus on all the great, positively reviewed new films opening this weekend, like The World’s End, Short Term 12, You’re Next, Drinking Buddies and The Trials of Muhammad Ali (not yet reviewed), plus some expanding favorites all making this the best new movie weekend of the year. And in between showtimes as we spend the next two days in the cinema, let’s review all the other non-Bat-news and features FSR has covered since the last Reject Recap. Below you’ll find goodies on The Avengers, the Marx Brothers, Smokey and the Bandit and other awesome things […]

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The Stand

With Ben Affleck busy donning cape and cowl to protect the streets of Gotham, it looks like someone else will have to step in to write and direct the adaptation of Stephen King‘s “The Stand” (that Affleck was previously tied to). And, thank to Deadline Hollywood, we now know the secret identity of Affleck’s replacement – Scott Cooper. Cooper’s first feature was 2009′s Crazy Heart and his Christian Bale-starring revenge flick Out of the Furnace will be in theaters this fall. Based on those two, Cooper looks to be a strong choice, but he’s got his work cut out for him. The Stand could dwarf a phone book – the original version totals a whopping 823 pages, and King’s later “Complete & Uncut Edition” ups it to 1152 pages. There’s no word yet on whether The Stand will be divvied up Hobbit-style, or if Cooper has the unfortunate task of cramming so much story into a single flick.

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news ben affleck is batman

Per The Wrap, Ben Affleck will play Batman in the upcoming sequel to Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel. Go ahead. Bitch, moan, complain, and vent about how terrible this casting is because of Gigli or Daredevil or his association with Kevin Smith. We’ll wait.

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affleck-fincher

The image you see above you was recently taken when A-list directors Ben Affleck and David Fincher were spotted sitting down to have a high-powered lunch together. What were the two movers and shakers discussing? The finer points of putting together a film? How good the tiramisu was at the cafe that day? No, most likely they were discussing a Gillian Flynn novel called “Gone Girl,” and what it would take it turn it into a movie. If you’ll recall, back in January it was reported that Fincher was quite possibly looking to direct an adaptation of the book, though it wasn’t quite clear where it would fit into his confusing schedule. Well, a report out of Deadline now claims that, due to his shadowy lunch with Affleck, Gone Girl is officially a go, and it’s officially going to be Fincher’s next film.

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wonder

To The Wonder has proven itself as Terrence Malick‘s most critically disliked film to date. Malick’s sprawling epic, The Tree of Life, was met with scoffs, but Wonder has been met with snickers and laughs. The hype and conversations spurred by The Tree of Life were exciting, which hasn’t been the case for Malick’s newest movie, and it’s easy to see why. For both good and bad, his sixth film symbolizes everything we expect from the filmmaker. The good, at least for non-Malick fans, is that To The Wonder is a simple, mostly linear story. The two leads, Neil (Ben Affleck) and Marina (Olga Kurylenko), are madly in love. Neil, from Oklahoma, strikes up a passionate relationship with Marina while traveling Europe with the graceful Ukrainian woman. Of course Neil can’t live overseas with her forever, so he decides to bring Marina and her 10-year-old daughter back to Oklahoma with him. For a while, it goes smoothly. Then it doesn’t. Then it does. And it continues on like that for sometime.

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Oblivion Bubble Ship

On this evening’s edition of Movie News After Dark, we take a closer look at Tom Cruise’s ride in Oblivion, get up close and personal with Silent Ben Affleck, see what Russ Meyer’s Star Wars universe might look like and get down and dirty with the Internet’s finest movie-related accomplishment: the Supercut.

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Ben Affleck

Ben Affleck’s latest effort as a director, Argo, saw the burgeoning filmmaker stepping a bit out of his wheelhouse and making a period piece set in 70s Los Angeles and Iran instead of making another one of the contemporary, Boston-set crime films that had brought him to the dance. Seeing as he was rewarded for his efforts with a Best Picture win at this year’s Oscar ceremony, it’s not surprising to see him once again looking at projects that are a little bit different from the style of film everyone assumed he was on his way to becoming known for. Deadline reports that the latest project he’s looking at is an adaptation of Nathaniel Philbrick’s upcoming novel, “Bunker Hill: A City, a Siege, a Revolution.” According to the trade, Warner Bros just closed a high six figure deal to get the film rights to the book, which are being given to Affleck and Matt Damon’s Pearl Street Films and are intended to be used as a directing vehicle for Affleck. Early word has the director bringing back his Argo scribe, Chris Terrio, to pen the adaptation. While Bunker Hill would be taking Affleck back to his hometown roots of Boston, it would also see him expanding his experience as a maker of period films, as the story is set two hundred years before the feathered hairdos and mutton chops of Argo, in 1775—and it’s something of a war movie to boot. Amazon’s description of Philbrick’s novel states:

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Dazed high school girls

  It won’t officially be the 20th anniversary of Dazed and Confused until this fall, but last Thursday the film was honored at the annual Texas Hall of Fame Awards, where it received the Star of Texas Award from presenter Quentin Tarantino. In person to accept were writer-director Richard Linklater and members of the cast, including Wiley Wiggins, Anthony Rapp and Joey Lauren Adams. To continue the film’s recognition, it seemed fitting to devote this week’s Scenes We Love to the 1993 high school movie classic. Dazed is not the sort of feature that is easily broken up by scenes. There are many memorable moments, a lot of quotable lines, but as far as individual scenes are concerned there aren’t many that can be bracketed and labeled so cleanly. There are definable acts marked by location, such as the school act, the Emporium act and the beer bust/moon tower act. Are the many distinct pieces of each of these sections qualifiable as scenes? Obviously I’m thinking too much about it. I feel like this is a conversation for Tony, Mike and Cynthia to have while cruising around. Clearly those geeks were the ones I most identified with when the movie came out during my junior year. As usual feel free to name your own favorite scenes or those you think are the “best.” You can find six scenes I love and the personal reasons why after the jump.

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To the Wonder

Being abstruse is usually Terrence Malick‘s bag, so it’s somewhat refreshing that the first poster for his upcoming To the Wonder is surprisingly straightforward. The dreamy and vintage-feeling one-sheet features stars Ben Affleck and Olga Kurylenko standing in front of (well, sort of, there’s clearly some hefty Photoshopping going on here) France’s Mont Saint-Michel, an island with the nickname “The Wonder of the Western World” or, “Rocky Little Island That Inspired The Name of a Malick Movie.” What could possibly go wrong for a pair of lovers at such a lovely location? To the Wonder will open in limited release on April 12th. [EW]

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published: 04.16.2014
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published: 04.16.2014
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published: 04.16.2014
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published: 04.14.2014
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