Pacific Rim

Legendary

A new film partnership has just been born. Legendary Entertainment has entered a five-year deal with Universal Pictures, which will include the financing, distribution, and marketing of Legendary’s films, as well as expansion into other projects. As reported by Variety, the deal officially begins at the start of 2014. Legendary is still waiting on their current agreement with Warner Bros to expire, which will happen at the end of the year.

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Guillermo del Toro

Guillermo del Toro abides by zero perceived distinctions between high and low culture. Whether working with Hollywood popcorn properties like Blade II or Hellboy, or creating imaginative, dark arthouse fare like The Devil’s Backbone and Pan’s Labyrinth, del Toro has demonstrated a singular creative vision that stands out against an unimaginative Hollywood. That’s why this weekend’s Pacific Rim, despite being marketed as Transformers 4, promises to be a gloriously geeky respite in a summer of largely unsatisfactory blockbusters. Coupled with the recent news that del Toro might be directing a Charlie Kaufman-scripted adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five, there are many reasons to celebrate the fact that the restlessly imaginative man who introduced himself with Cronos bounced from the streamlined Hobbit adaptations. Equal parts Jim Henson, Brothers Quay, and Terry Gilliam, del Toro is a visionary who also happens to be a bankable name. That’s a pretty rare commodity these days. So here’s some free film school (for fans and filmmakers alike) from the guy who we’ve forgiven for making Mimic.

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rim

Jaegers beating Kaiju. Kaiju beating Jaegers. That’s all a movie needs, right? All red-blooded humans should start frothing at the mouth at the sight of piloted robots and otherworldly monsters throwing down, but without their own red blood pumping through metallic veins, the CGI is only spectacle to keep your eyes busy. Enter screenwriter Travis Beacham and the unique solution for injecting heart into Pacific Rim. Needing something that injected a bit of humanity into those massive Jaegers, the film employs a concept called “drifting” that should stifle anyone trying to compare Guillermo del Toro‘s latest sci-fi epic to Transformers.  Beacham’s concept is not only one of the reasons the movie got made, it’s one of the reasons the script was ever written at all. I recently got to speak with the writer, who had a lot to say about the work that went into making Pacific Rim more than a Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em action fest:

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Pacific Rim

We’re now halfway done with the summer movie season, and thus far, it’s been a good one. This month is the most exciting of the bunch, as July usually is, but June was no slouch. Man of Steel wowed audiences while dividing critics, but best of all, World War Z became the surprise, if modest, hit of the summer. Not only that, director Marc Forster proved the negative buzz wrong with a clever and efficient action thriller. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for White House Down. Shame on me for not including it on last month’s list, because, according to plenty of trusted sources, it’s a boatload of fun. I still haven’t had the time to see it for myself, but it sounds like the type of self-aware, focused blockbuster Roland Emmerich‘s career has been building up to. Thankfully people turned out for This is the End, so Sony has that going for them. Let’s hope none of these must-see films of July meet the same box-office fate as the rocket launcher-wielding president:

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Pacific Rim

The drift. Two pilots melding memories with the body of a machine. The deeper the bond, the better you fight. As Charlie Hunnam’s character explains to his co-pilot, played by the always lovely Rinko Kikuchi, “this is about to get real.” With less than two weeks until the film opens wide for all (paying, rating-appropriate) eyes to see, Warner Bros. has delivered yet another Pacific Rim trailer. Guillermo del Toro‘s giant monster movie has garnered a significant amount of buzz thus far from the circles of geeks and those press that have already screened the movie, but its aura has been shadowed a bit from less-than-stellar box office tracking. Regardless of what the numbers say — and regardless of the film’s box office performance, for that matter — there’s an unquestionable cool factor at work. It’s a big kid, del Toro, playing with the world’s most expensive toy set. And not in the way Michael Bay plays with his Transformers. This is something classical. Monstrous, if you will. So yes, lets watch a fourth trailer. Do you really have something better to do? I don’t.

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Pacific Rim - Coyote Tango

It’s not enough that you physically control your giant, monster-fighting robot. You also have to emotionally bond with it, and, like a firetruck, there has to be two drivers. These are the kinds of things that you’ll learn when training to fight Godzilla’s second cousins (and one perpetually pissed off aunt), or when you see Guillermo del Toro‘s Pacific Rim. This behind-the-scenes video gives us a glimpse into that bond between drivers and machine — one that requires you to give yourself over completely, to share your entire life experience with another person and a skyscraper-sized hunk of metal that punches monsters. It’s kind of a bizarre idea, but it’s also nice to see that the movie involves some elements that demand (even on a surface-level) some humanity instead of seeing soldiers simply hop into colossal mecha-warriors like they were Hyundais and cruising around without much effort.  It’s also unsurprising that this much thought is going into the physics of a del Toro movie.

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FILM JOCKEYS HEADER

What happens when a legendary film critic brings is geriatric crankiness to an internet movie show? Film Jockeys follows the adventures of Carl Barker, his far-too-young production staff, the filmmakers and the movie characters that inhabit their world. Written and illustrated by Derek Bacon, it’s the perfect webcomic for passionate fans who also love spoilery scoops. For your consideration, Episode #23:

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Pacific Rim Robots

Another trailer for Guillermo Del Toro‘s Pacific Rim has been released, just in case you’re not already on board. The thing is, there’s not a whole lot that’s different about this new spot and the WonderConone we saw at the end of last month. You’ve got giant monsters battling giant robots in the sea and on land. You’ve got Idris Elba doing his best audition for the next rousing speeches supercut. You’ve got the tagline telling us to “Go Big or Go Extinct.” And you’ve got little bits (littler this time) of the likely comic relief characters played by Charlie Day and Ron Perlman. Honestly, I’d like to see more of the character stuff. Or something else besides big creatures and the kind of action that could just as easily sell a Michael Bay movie. At least the previous trailer hinted at some themes involving the humanity inside the robots. That which make them different from the monsters in spite of them initially being noted for their equal measure — big bad weapons of defense to go up against big bad weapons of offense. Knowing Del Toro, the big ideas are probably there, but of course that stuff doesn’t sell a movie to most people the way explosions and fighting behemoths do.

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Iron Man 3

Harmony Korine and friends already gave us a taste of sand, sun and heavy weaponry, but it doesn’t quite feel like summer yet. Maybe that’s because global warming is making everything so cool or because President Obama keeps delaying all of our vacation planes, but the hugeness of the season still hasn’t fully descended. That’ll change this weekend when Iron Man 3 drops an arc reactor into theaters. Then, the parade of unbelievably massive summer movies commences with buddy cops, mischievous teens, people probably named Khan, bald Matt Damons, super men, and the end of the world itself in tow. It’s a tight race this year. Optimism runs high, and the next few months are packed full with studios and indie outfits hoping to entertain and score big, so the task of naming the 13 most-anticipated summer movies was a tough one. So instead of hurting our brains over it, we let math do the work by putting the question to the whole staff and tallying up the results. It’s a slightly eclectic mix, displaying the powerful potential of cinematic storytelling to bring us into the cool, dark room with a single light source. As luck would have it, we found a fittingly seasonal place to start:

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245941id1b_PacRim_1sided_120x180_2p_400.indd

You probably don’t need to watch the newly released Pacific Rim trailer below because by this point you already know if you want to see it or not. It’s a Guillermo del Toro movie about giant monsters fighting giant robots! But if for some reason you’re not yet convinced that this is going to be all kinds of over the top explodey goodness go ahead and take 2:38 to watch the new trailer below. It originally premiered at WonderCon where it was meant to be an exclusive, but del Toro and friends have decided to share it with the online world anyway. Check out the much loved Pacific Rim trailer from WonderCon below.

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Oblivion Trailer Screenshot

What with Iron Man 3, Oblivion, Elysium, Pacific Rim and the myriad other blockbusting sci-fi movies coming out, 2013 is shaping up to be a great year for the genre. If by “genre” you mean “these four ideas repeated over and over again.”

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ark-melt

Anything happen this week to revolutionize the film industry? What, you don’t know? You must need the Reject Recap, our weekly rundown of the best and most important news and features any movie fan must read. Yeah, most of it is our own content, but we also look outside the FSR borders for great film-related (and sometimes TV-related) pieces elsewhere. If you see something you think should be included in the Recap, please email me.  Over the past seven days, in spite of a major film festival going on (well, maybe because of this), a lot of very interesting things happened or came out. The Internet continued to alter the business of cinema and we heard about long-awaited sequels to ’90s movies. Obligatorily, we also thought more about the next Star Wars movie. And once again we include a few must-watch videos. So, in honor of what’s gone on this week, put on David Bowie’s “Changes,” sit back and play catch up with us. (Kick)Start your weekend right after the jump.

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Pacific Rim Concept Art

As someone whose only experience with legitimate high culture is seeing a bunch of bizarre black and white photography in a pitch black room aided only by a small flashlight (thanks, France!) these new pieces of concept art from Pacific Rim strike me as exactly the kind of thing that an enterprising museum of fine art would do well to acquire. Sure, Banksy will probably just paint over them with a clever message of social relevance, but the time it would spend unmolested would be worth their while. Head over to Total Film for the hi-res versions of the concept art for Guillermo del Toro‘s new movie, and be sure to check out our talk with Charlie Day about playing a scientist for the production. And seriously, who wouldn’t want these pieces framed and hanging on their wall?

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Pacific Rim Charlie Day

Charlie Day joins us this week to talk about the inventive offensiveness of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia as well as what it was like to play a hipster scientist for Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim. Plus, Sasha Grey gives us some romance tips after scaring us in Would You Rather, Craig Mazin shares the creation of four Identity Thief script pages, and we answer a listener question about finding viable production partners. That’s a lot of ground to cover, and we’re all hung over on discount champagne, so let’s get started. Download Episode #6

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The Best Movie Trailers of 2012

Everyone knows you can’t judge a book by its cover, but were you aware that movies shouldn’t be judged by a trailer either? I know, seems counter-intuitive, but while the trailer advertises a feature the two aren’t interchangeable. Terrible trailers sometimes give way to fantastic films just as brilliant trailers sometimes reveal ridiculously bad ones. It’s a crap shoot really. The list below features twelve of our favorite trailers that premiered in 2012. Some of the movies turned out to be gems, others ended up being far less impressive and a few won’t be released until 2013, but all of them made us excited to watch one more movie…

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Pacific Rim

While we’d be willing to hazard a guess that the only thing you really need to know about Guillermo del Toro‘s Pacific Rimis that it involves giant, human-controlled robots battling sea monsters, apparently that’s not quite enough to sell this thing, because now we need to look at pictures of humans standing around looking mad. Where the hell are the robots? Bring out the sea monsters! At least hit us with some Charlie Day. The Lebanese Movie Guide (because of course?) has just debuted a new still from the film (via ComingSoon) which basically reveals nothing beyond the fact that stars Idris Elba and Rinko Kikuchi will stand together at some point, looking at each other in a vaguely combative way, while some diligent workers toil behind them (is that guy playing Galaga?). If this means that we might get a similarly-tense robot-staring-down-a-sea-monster still in the near future, that’s a-okay. Pacific Rim opens on July 12th.

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Pacific Rim

The trailer for Pacific Rim crashed through a few bridges and buildings, but it’s here now for our viewing pleasure. With all the extra-dimensional monsters and giant robots clashing, is there any doubt it’s the holiday season? Add an oven-full of grandma’s cookies, and you’ve got a true winter celebration. And now the team over at Aint It Cool has delivered the Q and A equivalent of grandma’s cookies: Guillermo del Toro addressing the Butt-Numb-a-Thon audience about his mech suit movie. The geek level here is high, so if your eyes grow wide, it’s normal. Check out the video Q and A for yourself:

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Pacific Rim

What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly column recapping news, updating you on the trends of today and bringing you thoughts on what is going on in this world gone mad. We begin this evening with a number of looks at Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim. In conjunction with the newly released trailer, these images, poster, etc. have brought the buzz around this one to a fever-pitch just as the movie del Toro passed on (The Hobbit) moves into theaters. It’s an interesting dichotomy, really. While Peter Jackson has delivered one of the bigger disappointments of 2012 (see my notes below), del Toro gives us hope for 2013. Lots and lots of hope. More new images just after the break.

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Pacific Rim Comic-Con Poster

At last weekend’s Ain’t It Cool News Butt-numb-athon, Guillermo del Toro called Pacific Rim a “film made by fans, but not a fan film,” and it’s easy to see what he’s talking about in this first full-length trailer for the film. He isn’t making Hellboy this time around, but a big, accessible summer blockbuster for everyone. Considering all the massive action on display here, this could be what makes del Toro an actual household name. Who can’t get behind human-controlled gigantic robots defending Earth from monstrous aliens? We may have said the same thing about Cowboys & Aliens all those many naive years ago, but del Toro is a filmmaker we can trust with a high-concept as good as this. Check out the first trailer for Pacific Rim after the break!

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Showing a large amount of faith in Guillermo del Toro‘s Pacific Rim, Legendary Pictures has hired the screenwriter who crafted the initial treatment, Travis Beacham, to get crackin’ on a second installment. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the production company is happy enough with early buzz to take the first steps toward developing a franchise. Of course, scripts are cheap relative to the finished product, so there’s always the chance that they could pull back on the reins if the film doesn’t meet their financial expectations. But if they’re happy…it means more monsters fighting robots in tropical locales. My personal fantasy is that if it hits big, it’ll ensure Beacham’s Killing on Carnival Row gets a greenlight and larger studio interest. That project — the future-set story of a detective hunting a serial killer who’s targeting mythical creatures —  got Tarsem Singh signed on a year ago but hasn’t yet been put into pre-production. Maybe a massively successful hit will be the catalyst it needs. Check out everything we’ve got on Pacific Rim

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published: 12.18.2014
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published: 12.17.2014
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published: 12.15.2014
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published: 12.12.2014
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