Stephen Lang

Gina Carano and Amaury Nolasco in IN THE BLOOD

Gina Carano found success as an MMA fighter, but my aversion to sweaty acronyms meant I first learned of her existence in Steven Soderbergh’s Haywire. She plays a CIA (more my speed) agent framed by her own people, and the film is basically her kicking one Hollywood leading man’s ass after the next including Channing Tatum, Michael Douglas, Ewan McGregor, Michael Fassbender, and Antonio Banderas. It’s a combination of star power and a very frequent use of Carano’s impressive fighting abilities that makes the film so fun, but more than that, those elements helped deflect attention away from the sloppy script and her poor acting. Fast forward three years later and she’s finally found a follow-up leading role, but oddly and unfortunately, In the Blood has very little clue what to do with her. Ava (Carano) and Derek (Cam Gigandet) are newlyweds on their honeymoon in the Caribbean, and while his father (Treat Williams) has made his disapproval and mistrust of Ava clear Derek has chosen love over his dad’s concerns and worries. A local offers to show the couple a good time at a nightclub, but trouble arises in the form of a gangster named Big Biz (Danny Trejo) who forces Ava’s violent hand (and other hand and feet) into dishing out bone-crunching moves on the dance floor. Ava and Derek try to put the experience behind them the next day with some zip-line action, but a fall leaves him badly injured. Even worse? The EMTs kidnap him. Now Ava’s on a […]

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The Clone Saga

Here’s a piece of surprising news. Stephen Lang, who portrayed the villainous Colonel Quaritch in James Cameron‘s Avatar, has been confirmed (by Deadline Hollywood) to return for all three Avatar sequels that Cameron is shooting back-to-back-to-back for some reason. It’s surprising, of course, because – and this will be a spoiler if you haven’t seen Avatar, but almost the entirety of Earth’s population saw Avatar four times over so spoilers shouldn’t really be a big deal – we all saw Quaritch snuffed out by a couple of well-placed arrows at the end of the original film. So how exactly will Cameron re-insert his scarfaced villain into the jungles of Pandora? Given that we know next to nothing about Avatars 2-4, almost anything could be possible. He could go the Willem Dafoe in Spider-Man route and for some beyond the grave taunting (although there are no haunted mirrors on Pandora; Quaritch may be relegated to haunted puddles). Or perhaps we’ll see the villain return via flashback.

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John Krasinski

The deluge of rumors concerning James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy continues unabated. This time around the source is Comic Book Movie, who says they have a shadowy operative close to the production and his or her latest round of snooping has led them to believe that not only is The Office’s John Krasinski the latest in a parade of actors to read for the role of Peter Quell, but that there’s also a shortlist of actors being considered for the role of the Guardians’ resident green guy, Drax the Destroyer. Rumor has it that Generation Kill actor Brian Patrick Wade; that guy from the Old Spice commercials, Isaiah Mustafa; and former professional wrestler Dave Bautista are all being looked at. Presumably they’re in some Hollywood back lot right now, letting Gunn take test footage of them destroying things.

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What is Casting Couch? It’s the casting news roundup that’s ready for the weekend. Colin Firth is kind of a sneaky hunk. At first glance he’s pretty handsome, but not the most attractive dude in the world, and then he’s got this charm to him that just grows on you until you’ve scrawled his name on all of your Trapper Keepers. He’s such saucy dish that it looks like he can make even a big name star like Nicole Kidman develop a schoolgirl crush. THR is reporting that she liked playing his wife in the recent World War II drama The Railway Man so much that she’s now actively recruiting him to join her in her next project, Before I Go to Sleep. Apparently, Before I Go to Sleep is an adaptation of a S.J. Watson novel about an amnesiac woman whose husband must reintroduce himself to her every morning. Early attempts at titling the film The Rich Man’s 50 First Dates were reportedly rejected by the studio.

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This past summer I was surprisingly blown away by the Steven Spielberg produced alien-invasion drama Falling Skies. Part of the surprise came from the fact that my anticipation for the series was extremely low. All I had known prior to watching the first episode was whatever information was in the trailer that dropped from TNT a month before it began airing. That case is the exact opposite when it comes to the much, much more high profile sci-fi show from camp Spielberg, Terra Nova. Especially now that Falling Skies cemented Spielberg’s return television (and the first time since ER that he has put out a series that’s been widely praised across the board), all eyes are on Terra Nova to see if lightning can strike twice. But unlike Falling Skies whose behind the camera talent is mostly full of non-names (outside of the offices of studio heads and agent assistants), Terra Nova boasts some heavy hitter talent such as Craig Silverstein (who created the new iteration of Nikita on The CW), 24 heavy-hitter Jon Cassar and Brannon Braga whose credits include Star Trek: The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager and the highly under-rated FlashForward. The point being that there are a lot of hands in the pot of a show that is either the next LOST or this season’s The Event. So it’s time to figure out which one it is.

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My dad took my sister and me to a Sunday afternoon double feature once as a reward for being awesome kids. Presumably. I don’t recall how we convinced him to take us, but the bigger question here is do theaters even do double features anymore? Two movies for the price of one? Am I just that old? First up was Steven Spielberg’s E.T: The Extraterrestrial, and as expected all three of us loved it. The theater was packed, and as the end credits rolled it was clear that everyone would be staying for the second film as well. That second movie, inexplicably, was Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Conan the Barbarian. The first hint that this might not be a good idea struck my dad around the thirty minute mark when Conan enters the dwelling of a loose woman… and his fears were confirmed three minutes later when Arnold starts thrusting his bare-ass between the naked witch’s legs. Reluctantly, my dad stood, gave the witch’s sweaty flesh one last glance, and then led us on a long walk of shame up the aisle to the exit. I tell you that so I can tell you this… my dad would not have felt it necessary to do the same thing during the brand new incarnation of Robert E. Howard‘s classic tale. It’s far more cartoonish than offensive. And that’s not even the most surprising thing about the new movie… Marcus Nispel‘s Conan the Barbarian is also a fairly entertaining and enjoyable romp filled with […]

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr flexes his rippling muscles and sets out to live a warrior lifestyle, just like Jason Momoa in Conan the O’Barbarian. But before he can do that, he has to drive a stake through his neighbor’s heart, since he’s certain he lives next door to a vampire. What else could all those sparkles be about? Meanwhile, he sends his kids off to a dangerous 3D, Aroma-Vision mission, hoping they can make it as real spy kids so they can teach him to put on a fake British accent and woo a not-quite-British Anne Hathaway.

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Marcus Nispel is known as a work-for-hire type of director. The type of filmmaker that’s brought onto a project to craft a studio’s vision versus his own. Coming from the world of Platinum Dunes’ micromanagement, he’s worked on films that are not meant for auteurs. The projects he’s been a part of are calculated products, and Nispel is more than aware of it. The Friday the 13th and Texas Chainsaw Massacre remaker knows how the game goes for his franchise starter films. With Conan the Barbarian, Nispel got the chance to make a different type of blockbuster: a hard-R that features a misogynistic, barbaric lead. However, the director still was a “dog on many leashes,” as he described the process. Hopefully, Nispel still managed to create a version of Conan that lives up to the idea of an R-rated tent-pole release about a barbarian who thirsts for blood. Here’s what Nispel had to say about avoiding film school, making someone else’s vision, and how filmmaking is like raising children:

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In today’s contest of wills, we have 5 contestants all trying to mean mug as best as possible. Conan (Jason Momoa) cries out in battle, Khalar Zym (Stephen Lang) attempts to pass a gallstone, Corin (Ron Perlman) unleashes his Planet of the Apes face, Marique (Rose McGowan) stuns with her facial tattoos, and Tamara (Rachel Nichols) didn’t get the memo that she needed to be scary. These character posters for Conan the Barbarian are actually pretty intense, showing off some solid costume and make-up design as well as the unnerving battle faces of some of its stars. Which one is the scariest?

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FOX has released a brand new trailer for the upcoming Steven Spielberg sci-fi/action/adventure series Terra Nova. The new trailer features never before seen footage of future earth and the dinosaur infested past. I’ll say this much, FOX is really marketing this show right. Releasing little by little. Teasing us with only two shots of dinosaurs and filling the trailers with more and more scenes of the Dystopian future that will be seen in the pilot. Clearly the show writers are operating under the philosophy “less is more.” Because the less I see of the dark and dirty future earth, the more I’m intrigued by it. And the same goes for the really good looking CG dinosaurs that are running around in the past.

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There was a plethora of TV spots to behold last night at the Super Bowl, and while the Transformers: Dark of The Moon spot took the cake for me as best spot of the night, the one I was looking forward to the most wasn’t a movie at all, it was the first footage of the new FOX action/adventure/scifi show, Terra Nova. My first thought after watching this was, Avatar: The Series. But that probably just has to do with the fact that Stephen Lang appears to be playing the same character. But once the Avatar notions left my brain, I began to both appreciate and question what I was seeing. Check it out below.

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If there was a non-technical star in Avatar, it was Stephen Lang. As Colonel Quaritch, he brought a great deal of humor and murderous prowess. James Cameron’s movie needed a great villain in order to work, and he was the perfect man for the job. Now, there’s another movie that needs a villain. And once again, Lang looks perfect for the job.

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Kevin Carr sits his chubbiness down and sees if Avatar, Did You Hear About the Morgans? and Up In the Air can make the grade.

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Neil Miller takes an early look at the movie that has been called a “game-changer.” Will it change the game? We’re not sure. Is it an incredible experience unlike anything we’ve seen before? Well now, that’s more like it…

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avatar-stephen-lang

One of our beloved readers, Marcus G., sent this over to me this morning and it is more than worth sharing — especially if you’re looking to cleanse your pallet from all of the Twilight: New Moon news this weekend.

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20th Century Fox and IGN UK have unleashed yet another new look at Avatar. And at this point I would normally say that we’ve reached a saturation point with clips, trailer and featurettes, but we must remember that this is a 19-hour movie.

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George Clooney returns to the Middle East but this time he’s not looking for Saddam’s gold or getting wrapped up in a global conspiracy. No, this time he’s killing goats with his mind (and sexy mustache no doubt).

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