Christopher Eccleston

Justin Theroux in The Leftovers

Ah, the old “fake commercial that’s actually a trailer for something else” trick. A classic. First you lull ‘em into a false sense of security, then ka-blam! Zombies/aliens/vampires/dinosaur sharks/Muppets. Sure, The Leftovers loses a little bit of its fake-out oomph by airing on HBO, a network that doesn’t actually show commercials (at least, not for any non-HBO products), but the suspense is still mostly there. And for those poor, uninformed souls who don’t know the ins and outs of HBO’s commercial policies, there are still a few gotchas to be had. What starts out as an ad for some sciencey whatever — a smartphone or the environment or something — segues into something a little scarier when a great big chunk of the population disappears into thin air. What the trailer doesn’t mention, however is just what’s causing our nation’s babies to vaporize out of their car seats: the Rapture. Maybe not the Rapture, but a Rapture nonetheless. And the series, based off the similarly-titled book by Tom Peretta, will follow the non-raptured (hence the title) as they feud and fuss in post-apocalyptic suburbia.


Thor: The Dark World (2013)

By the end of the year, we will be ten films deep in Marvel Studios mythology, which is quite a feat by any standard. While not every film can be the billion-dollar blockbuster like The Avengers or Iron Man 3, the smaller ones still make plenty of money worldwide and provide a substantial amount of connective tissue in the overall universe. In November 2013, Thor: The Dark World came out, performing about as well as its predecessor (which is to say good, but not great). The film wraps up a lot of Loki’s storyline from Thor and The Avengers, but more importantly, the mid-credits sequence leads into The Guardians of the Galaxy, due out in August 2014. For the DVD and Blu-ray release, director Alan Taylor sits down with Marvel guru Kevin Feige, villainous heartthrob Tom Hiddleston, and cinematographer Kramer Morgenthau to talk about the film and reveal the behind-the-scenes process of not just making a superhero film, but making an installment in a much larger franchise.


Thor: The Dark World

So far Marvel has had a terrific run. They’ve been putting out solid films, and the way they set up Phase I was an astonishing feat. They’re risk-takers, and releasing a Thor movie in 2011 was one of those risky decisions. Would an audience accept a Norse God and all the fantastical mumbo jumbo that came with him? They did, making Thor a success for the studio. Its sequel, Thor: The Dark World, makes up for a few of the previous film’s issues, while also bringing its own set of serious problems to the table. This time around Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is facing more struggles than ever before. His relationship with Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) has suffered after years of distance, he’s fighting small-scale wars, he’s still conflicted over his brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), and, to make matters worse, a D-movie villain, Malekith (Christopher Eccleston), leader of the Dark Elves, shows up for revenge. Malekith not only shakes up the world of Asgard, but also any dramatic potential to be had with the more interesting conflicts set up but given no satisfying payoffs. So much, with the exception of director Alan Taylor‘s eye, is given little time to breathe.


Thor and Iron Man

The first two films to be released in Marvel Studios’ post-Avengers, second wave of interconnected films are Shane Black’s Iron Man 3 and Alan Taylor’s Thor: The Dark World. Through various rumor mills and casting reports we’ve already gleamed a lot about what these two sequels are going to be about, but today Marvel finally released official synopses of the two films, and have effectively removed any lingering doubts. First up is Black’s film, which the studio describes by saying, “Marvel Studios’ Iron Man 3 pits brash-but-brilliant industrialist Tony Stark/Iron Man against an enemy whose reach knows no bounds. When Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy’s hands, he embarks on a harrowing quest to find those responsible. This journey, at every turn, will test his mettle. With his back against the wall, Stark is left to survive by his own devices, relying on his ingenuity and instincts to protect those closest to him. As he fights his way back, Stark discovers the answer to the question that has secretly haunted him: does the man make the suit or does the suit make the man?” While all that stuff about Iron Man having to go on a quest that tests his mettle is pretty vague, that last line of the synopsis about the man making the suit or the suit making the man clearly supports the rumors that have surfaced (due to various casting reports) that Iron Man 3 would largely be taking its inspiration from Warren Ellis’ […]


According to Deadline Hollywood, the formidable Christopher Eccleston has signed on to play the main villain in Thor: The Dark World. He’s an excellent addition, bringing a severe acting talent and genre experience to the Marvel universe as Malekith The Accursed. The character is a major villain in the Asgardian realm who is not above deception (which might echo Loki). In fact, it’ll be interesting to see where Loki is during this sequel considering his involvement in the larger film universe. Or at least how he will fit in with a new villain taking the larger spotlight. In the comics, Loki and Malekith have worked together on more than one occasion. Hopefully they won’t change the design at all. Eccleston with purple and black half-face and giant gray hair? Genius. It’ll make up for him having to say that horrendous, “It never rains but it pours,” pun line in Gone in 60 Seconds.  



Christopher Eccleston, “Doctor Who”, will star in a new John Lennon biopic called Naked Lennon, commissioned by BBC Four.



Kevin Carr takes a look at this week’s movie releases, including Saw VI, Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant, Astro Boy and Amelia.



Neil pretty much hit the nail on the head with his review, but we figure ‘G.I. Joe’s’ big enough to warrant an affirmation: Ignore the renewed bad buzz: The movie’s a lot of fun.



Paramount Pictures has released the full press kit for next week’s release of G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. Included in said press kit was 28 high resolution photos from the film and the production.



British actor Chris Eccleston is stepping into the role of Destro.

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published: 12.23.2014
published: 12.22.2014
published: 12.19.2014

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