Archive for February, 2009

Weinstein Co. stirs ‘Awake’Thriller sold to raft of countries

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

Weinstein Co. stirs ‘Awake’Thriller sold to raft of countries
BERLIN — The Weinstein Co. has finalized sales to most major territories on Joby Harold’s thriller “Awake,” starring Hayden ChristensenHayden Christensen and Jessica Alba.
Pic, which just finished shooting, has been picked up by Pan-Europeene in France, Kinowelt in Germany, Eagle in Italy and Icon for the U.K., Australia and New Zealand. Artport has bought rights in Japan, Svensk in Scandinavia, West in Russia and Sun Distribution in Latin America.
Christensen plays a wealthy young heart transplant patient who because of an anesthetist’s error finds himself conscious though immobile during the operation, and discovers that his wife and doctors are conspiring to kill him.
Terrence Howard and Lena Olin co-star.TWC will release the movie in North America.

Bauer Martinez’s Crash Bandits delays Thailand shoot

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

Bauer Martinez’s Crash Bandits has pushed back filming in Thailand to January 2007 to allow for longer pre-production time, according to government agency Thailand Film Office.
The John McTiernan-directed big-budget action adventure feature was originally scheduled for a three-month shoot in southern Thailand from mid-February through local fixer Kantana.

The project was expected to bring in a significant $5.1m (200m baht) in local spend, comparable to the large revenues generated by Oliver Stone’s Alexander shot in 2004, and to re-establish Thailand as an international film hub after a year-long slump.

Last year, earnings from foreign feature shoots dropped by 40% to $6.2m (244.6m baht) due to a series of devastating events such as the 2004 tsunami which took thousands of lives and destroyed much of popular locations such as Krabi and Phuket in the south.

Nevertheless, French director Alain Berberian last week started the camera rolling for Fix Production’s $17.8m (Euros 15.m) Treasure Island, making it the first international production to shoot in Thailand this year.

French actor Gerard Jugnot and actress Alice Taglioni are currently filming on the Krabi set, which features a 30 m long pirate boat built especially for the shoot. ‘Thailand is the location for about 60% of the film. We’ve scheduled a six-week shoot in the south from Krabi to Trang, which is expected to generate a local spend of approximately US$2 million,’ says executive producer Georges Langlois who coordinated the shoot through his Bangkok-based company Flash Cineservices.

In addition, Hong Kong director Oxide Pang is currently shooting his latest psychological thriller Diary in Thailand while his brother Danny is set to start filming his thriller Forest of Death also in the same country later this week.

Exciting Star Wars News

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

Star Wars fans prepared to be thrilled.

The Force is getting a whole new lease of life in the shape of a brand new TV series.
Star Wars creator George Lucas has agreed to make 100 episodes, covering the years between prequel Episode III: Revenge Of The Sith and the first 1977 Star Wars movie.Series producer Rick McCullum told the Daily Mirror: “We’re very excited - we just got confirmation George Lucas has committed himself to writing the Star Wars TV series. “I guess this is the news all fans have been waiting to hear.But will any familiar faces be popping up in the TV shows? None of the films’ actors, from Ewan McGregor to Carrie Fisher, will be taking part. But Anthony Daniels, who played C3P0 will appear.Rick added: “It will all be new because the originals will all be too old. But we will be using Anthony as C3PO because there is such a thing as loyalty.”George waited nearly 20 years before making the prequel films which star Hayden Christensen and Natalie Portman.In the last prequel we saw Anakin Skywalker go to the dark side to become Darth Vader and the TV series will concentrate on the rise of his evil empire.What we can’t tell you though is which side the series will be on…Looks like there’ll be another kind of war to decide that.

Inside the Mask

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

One of the most haunting images of Revenge of the Sith is the fearsome black mask that lowers over Anakin Skywalker’s ravaged face, forever sealing him in an implacable armored shell, marking a seemingly irreversible transformation into Darth Vader, Dark Lord of the Sith.
Though the Sydney-based Costume Props Department developed a full suit of armor for Hayden Christensen, the shot of the helmet lowering was achieved separately in postproduction by Industrial Light & Magic. The ILM Model Shop was tasked with building the separated helmet, and Practical Model Supervisor Brian Gernand assigned the task to Don Bies, for good reason.

“He knew of my affinity for movie history and Star Wars lore,” says Bies. Years ago, Bies worked as the archivist for the Lucasfilm Archives, the repository of the props, costumes and models used in various Lucasfilm productions. In that role, Bies had actually rescued the original Vader helmet used in for the unmasking in Return of the Jedi.

“The original prop I found at the bottom of a crate with a bunch of junk on top of it — shredded papers and stuff like that,” recalls Bies. “The crate almost got tossed, but I decided to check it and pulled out this brown flannel bag, and inside were the pieces of the mask.”

The mask became one of Bies’ favorites pieces in the Archive, and he studied it extensively, unknowingly preparing himself years in advance for the assignment of recreating it for Revenge of the Sith. The original mask, on a museum tour in Japan at the time of Episode III production, did not have much inner detail, allowing considerable artistic freedom in designing the inside of the mask.

“Ryan Church had created a design that was very manufactured and more medical,” says Bies. “I started making suggestions as to how to build it. His direction was that it’s supposed to look painful; it goes easy but it doesn’t come off easy. Having that freedom allowed me to start playing around with different materials. I used the readers from computer hard drives in there — it made it look like if you slipped this thing on your face that it would cut into your cheeks.”

Bies worked off of extensive photographs of the original prop, discovering that many of the “found” objects used to dress the original could not be found locally. “A lot of must have been from England surplus stores. I ended up having to laser cut almost all of it,” says Bies.

Some of the material he did find included electronic molex connectors, stainless steel studs from punk rocker collars, and parts from a Tamiya tank model kit. The two silver knobs bracketing Vader’s mouthpiece, nicknamed the “tusks,” came from a surprising source. “We were running short on time, so I actually bought them from a fan.”

Joining Bies on the project were John Duncan, who built the “harmonica” mouthpiece and Carol Bauman who helped paint the helmet. The helmet deviated from the original in that it used the Episode III mold which had a symmetrical face, and the new incarnation was solid black as opposed to the two-tone paint job seen in Episode VI.

“They had a heck of a time shooting the thing,” explains Bies of the shot looking at the mask coming down. “Kim Marks, who shot it, tried to get the angle right. When you get it over the lens, it distorted crazily because of the wide angle. So they had to tilt it. It’s really angled forward and looks more ominous.”

For the side angle shot of the mask lowering onto Anakin face, it was actually a composite since Hayden Christensen had already been photographed in Sydney separately a year earlier.

Weinstein Co. stirs ‘Awake’

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

BERLIN — The Weinstein Co. has finalized sales to most major territories on Joby Harold’s thriller “Awake,” starring Hayden Christensen and Jessica Alba.
Pic, which just finished shooting, has been picked up by Pan-Europeene in France, Kinowelt in Germany, Eagle in Italy and Icon for the U.K., Australia and New Zealand. Artport has bought rights in Japan, Svensk in Scandinavia, West in Russia and Sun Distribution in Latin America.

Christensen plays a wealthy young heart transplant patient who because of an anesthetist’s error finds himself conscious though immobile during the operation, and discovers that his wife and doctors are conspiring to kill him.

Terrence Howard and Lena Olin co-star.

TWC will release the movie in North America.

Lecter Beats Vader in Battle of the Bad Guys

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

HOLLYWOOD - Anthony Hopkins’ portrayal of sinister cannibal Hannibal Lecter has topped Darth Vader and Freddy Krueger in a new hip-hop magazine poll to find the ultimate movie bad guy.
Vibe magazine editors call the Silence of the Lambs star turn “a chilly, controlled, career performance,” giving Oscar winner Hopkins the edge over Star Wars villain Vader.
The top five on the list is: 1. Hannibal Lecter/Silence of the Lambs franchise (Anthony Hopkins)
2. Darth Vader/Star Wars franchise (David Prowse, James Earl Jones-Voice-& Hayden Christensen)
3. Freddy Krueger/A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise (Robert Englund)
4. Ike Turner/What’s Love Got to Do with It? (Laurence Fishburne)
5. Norman Bates/Psycho (Anthony Perkins)

Michael Hutchence Biopic Planned?

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

The team that developed “I, Lucifer”, producing partners Richard Hewitt and Clark Westerman, have reportedly partnered with director Nick Egan on an as of yet untitled Michael Hutchence biopic reports The Hollywood News.

The departed INXS frontman and Egan were good pals, with Egan designing the INXS “X” album cover, directed videos for the band, as well as vids for Kylie, Oasis, Bon Jovi, Rancid, and Alanis Morissette and Duran Duran.

Todd Gilmer Productions will also be developing the pic apparently, no word yet as to how much of Hutchence’s life the project will cover and who else is involved at present.

Hutchence film of excess angers singer’s family

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

A PLAN to make a film of the life of Michael Hutchence, the rock star who killed himself in 1997, has run into strong opposition from his family.
Nick Egan, a British film director and friend of the INXS frontman, is looking for actors to play the roles of the singer, as well as the late Paula Yates, his girlfriend, and Bob Geldof.

The last years of Hutchence’s troubled life were made worse by Yates’s fierce battle with Geldof, her former husband, for custody of their children. Hutchence, an Australian, hanged himself in a Sydney hotel room in 1997 at the age of 37.

A spokesman for INXS said that none of the current band members (who have reformed with a new frontman) had been contacted about the making of the film.

Hutchence’s mother, brother and sister are angry at not being consulted.

“No one has ever made any contact with us about doing a film,” said Patricia Glassop, who co-wrote a book on her son’s life.

“Are they going to look at his younger days growing up? How would they know anything about that when they weren’t there?” she asked. “I would be interested to know who they are going to cast, and who would play me.”

Among the actors Egan is considering for the role of Hutchence are Johnny Depp, Hayden Christensen, Eric Bana and a little-known singer-actor from Australia called Michael Piccirilli.

Egan, director of the yet to be released Red Light Runners, about petty gangsters, starring Harvey Keitel and Vinnie Jones, is better known as a rock video director. He has also designed album covers, including the multi-platinum INXS album Kick.

The new biopic is due to go into pre-production in the next three months and is scheduled for release next year.

Egan described his friend as “no saint”, adding: “Michael was experimental and hedonistic — that did involve the use of drugs. There were moments of absolute out-of-control narcissism, and other times of pure calm, when he wrote his songs.”

Hutchence’s string of girlfriends included the singer Kylie Minogue and supermodel Helena Christensen.

The film’s producers say they are planning to contact both the family and the band at a later stage.

Original Star Wars trilogy on DVD

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

According to the Home Media Retailing website, George Lucas’s original “Star Wars” films – read: before he messed with them – will be released on DVD in September.

If – like most of you did - you hated the razzle-dazzle special edition releases, and were grinding your teeth as Sebastian Shaw was tragically erased from the final moments of “Jedi” - only to be replaced by Hayden Christensen, ridiculous I tell ya! -, You’ll definitely want to pre-order this set.

On September 12, two years after diehard fans blasted Lucasfilm Ltd. for releasing only the digitally modified “Special Edition” versions of the celebrated trilogy in a boxed collection, “Star Wars”, “The Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi” hit disc in all their unscathed glory.

Each release, distributed by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, will be a two-disc set that also includes the digitally tweaked 2004 edition. The DVDs will only be available through Dec. 31.

Lucasfilm said the decision to revisit the trilogy came about “in response to overwhelming demand.”

“See the title crawl to Star Wars before it was known as Episode IV — A New Hope; see the pioneering, if dated, motion-control model work on the attack on the Death Star; groove to Lapti Nek or the Ewok Celebration song like you did when you were a kid; and, yes, see Han Solo shoot first,” according to Lucasfilm.

Jim Ward, president of LucasArts and SVP of Lucasfilm, said over the years, “a truly countless number of fans have told us that they would love to see and own the original version that they remember experiencing in theaters. We turned to the Lucasfilm Archives to search exhaustively for source material that could be presented on DVD.”

First Look: Awake

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

By the third time Hayden Christensen runs screaming down the same stretch of orange hallway at New York’s Bellevue Hospital Center for the rolling cameras, his bright blue hospital scrubs are darkened with sweat and he looks ready to be committed.

In his nightmare thriller Awake, first-time writer-director Joby Harold takes audiences on an abstract journey through the consciousness of Clay (Christensen), a heart transplant patient who is paralyzed yet able to sense pain while under the knife. “It’s called anesthetic awareness,” says Harold, leaning over a monitor. “Here, he’s experiencing being cut, and he’s running to different places inside his mind, trying to find a place to deal with the pain.”

Satisfied with the take, Harold calls for the next scene, which offers Christensen the respite of lying on a stretcher. Jessica Alba, who plays Clay’s wife, leans over to whisper words of comfort before he’s wheeled away to the operating table. “He’s looking for a happy place, and the place he goes is back to where we fell in love,” says Alba. Looks like the operation won’t be the first time the poor guy lost his heart. —Ryan Devlin

Hollywood rookie is new face of Superman

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

LOS ANGELES - Imagine Leonardo DiCaprio as the young Darth Vader, Haley Joel Osment as Harry Potter, or Nicolas Cage as Superman (that one really almost happened). No, sometimes Hollywood needs a fresh face up on screen, like Marlon Brando in “A Streetcar Named Desire,” Harrison Ford in “Star Wars” - or Brandon Routh in “Superman Returns.”

“A known actor comes with baggage, and Superman as a character is much larger than any actor,” said “Superman Returns” director Bryan Singer, who settled on Routh, an actor with just a soap-opera stint and a handful of television guest spots. “He looked like he stepped out of a comic book. Brandon’s an extremely fine actor, but he also needed to have the physical presence of someone who steps out of the collective perception of who Superman is.”

Borrowing from the look and style of the Christopher Reeve “Superman” franchise that took flight in 1978, “Superman Returns” also follows that movie’s pattern in casting. Reeve was an unknown who took third billing to Brando as Superman’s Kryptonian dad and Gene Hackman as villain Lex Luthor.

“Superman Returns” gets its star power from Kevin Spacey as Lex. Spacey won the first of his two Academy Awards for his previous collaboration with director Singer, “The Usual Suspects.”

Oscar winners such as Brando, Hackman and Spacey can add to the luster of a campy comic-book adaptation. But it’s better if the guy in the cape and tights comes free of celebrity history.

“I think there’s definitely something to that. Superman is such an icon that it’s weird to even imagine myself as him,” Routh said. “I think it helps that when people look at me in the film, they maybe see a little Brandon Routh, but they mostly just see Superman for right now. It’s very important for the character.”

“It’s nice to introduce somebody unknown to an audience, so they can make the role their own, and it’s not, `Oh, he’s the boy from this or that who played so and so,’” said Geoffrey Sax, director of the upcoming family action flick “Stormbreaker,” based on the best-selling series about a British teen who becomes a superspy.

The lead role went to newcomer Alex Pettyfer in one of Britain’s most-anticipated casting announcements since Daniel Radcliffe was picked to play Harry Potter.

A character sometimes can overwhelm an actor, even long after a film franchise has been laid to rest. Reeve took on a variety of roles to avoid typecasting, but his career always was defined by Superman.

Ford managed to break out of Han Solo’s shadow after “Star Wars,” but even that franchise’s creator, George Lucas, initially was reluctant to cast him as Indiana Jones in “Raiders of the Lost Ark.”

“Star Wars” co-stars Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher never quite separated themselves from the Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia mantles.

It remains to be seen what sort of career Hayden Christensen, who shot to instant celebrity when Lucas cast him as the young Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader, might carve out after “Star Wars.”

Christensen has taken a broad range of roles, but he may have trouble distancing himself from the Vader persona, unlike co-star Natalie Portman, who had a body of work behind her before “Star Wars.”

“I didn’t go from like zero to 60 in like seconds or whatever,” said Portman, who made a critical splash with her film debut in “Leon, the Professional” at age 13 and gradually grew into a mainstream star. “He’s a wonderful example of someone who really dealt with it well. He’s a really, really good person with good values and doesn’t buy into the bull of it all, so he handled it really well. It’s scary. It’s a weird thing to go through.”

Still, few actors would turn down an iconic role in a big Hollywood film for fear of the pressures of instant stardom.

Back in 2000, Hugh Jackman showed up for work on the romance “Someone Like You” and wondered who the 15 paparazzi milling about were waiting for.

“I walked about a block and realized all the cameras were trained on me, and I realized, `Oh, it’s me,’” said Jackman, who had just shot to stardom as Wolverine in “X-Men” and now reprises the role in “X-Men: The Last Stand.”

“Prior to that I’d done theater and films in Australia, which hadn’t seen the light of day outside Australia. This movie was my first break, and it’s very fair to say it was a monumental break. That movie changed everything for me.”

Before the modern age of the franchise film, fresh faces emerged the old-fashioned way, with a bravura performance that had audiences asking, “Who is THAT?”

Audrey Hepburn had small movie roles before starring opposite Gregory Peck in “Roman Holiday,” which earned her the best-actress Oscar. Brando was a stage star in the 1940s who became an overnight film sensation on the strength of his screen debut in “The Men,” quickly followed by “A Streetcar Named Desire.” Julie Andrews also had been a stage star when she made her Oscar-winning film debut with “Mary Poppins.”

Stage performers still occasionally leap to movie stardom - if the right person from Hollywood is in the audience.

M. Night Shyamalan had been looking for the perfect young woman to play the spirited blind heroine of his creepy fable “The Village.” Attending the theater one night in New York, Shyamalan found her - Bryce Dallas Howard, daughter of filmmaker Ron Howard, himself once the fresh-faced child star of “The Music Man” and “The Andy Griffith Show.”

“For me, it was the moment I saw her on stage. I was just, `That’s the girl,’” said Shyamalan, who also cast Howard in his upcoming summer film “Lady in the Water.” “I actually believe she’s a leading lady, which is a rare thing in this day and age. She’s an old-school star, like the ’20s, back when the big stars were women. Lillian Gish. She’s that.”

Nowadays, many of the big stars are superheroes, and as with “Superman Returns” or the “X-Men” movies, their casting is followed obsessively by fans.

The last thing a studio wants is millions of devotees grousing over the Internet that the filmmakers picked the wrong guy. An unknown makes the job easier, coming to the part with a stranger’s mystique and little or no prior celebrity by which to be judged.

“The bottom line in those kinds of movies is that Superman is the star of the movie. It’s not so-and-so as Superman,” said producer Jerry Weintraub, whose 1982 film “Diner” helped introduce such fresh faces as Mickey Rourke, Ellen Barkin and Paul Reiser. “I’m doing `Tarzan’ next year, and Tarzan is going to be an unknown, because Tarzan is the star, not the actor.”

MTV Movie Awards: Will Ferrell Freaks Out; Jessica Simpson Dusts Off Daisy Dukes

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

CULVER CITY, California — Who does Jamie Foxx want to engage in a few rounds of “tongue boxing” with? How many guardian angels does Jim Carrey have? What would smack talk between superheroes sound like?

On Saturday night the 2006

MTV Movie Awards took over the Sony Pictures Studios lot, asking those and too many other bizarre questions to count. On Thursday night at 8:30 p.m., the world will learn the answers. As for those who were inside Soundstage 15 to experience it firsthand — well, let’s just say they won’t be forgetting anytime soon. (Click here for photos of the show’s highlights.)

“This doesn’t suck,” Hayden Christensen grinned, a baseball cap pulled down low over his eyes as he surveyed the scene. “This is very cool.”

Strolling down a red carpet that was actually blue, monitored from above by an overhead tram containing an enormous camera, and approached by celebrity interviewers like Rihanna and Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz, attendees ranging from Owen Wilson to Keanu Reeves must have felt like they had wandered into a parallel universe. (Click here for photos from the blue carpet.)

“I’m not gonna lie to you,” admitted Will Ferrell, hesitantly looking to the sky. “It scares the sh- outta me, that giant camera.”

The star sightings were far-ranging, from Justin Timberlake to Hulk Hogan’s pop-singer daughter, Brooke. In one corner, you may have seen Steve Carell bumping into Brandon Routh, and in another, you might catch Amanda Bynes tiptoeing around a shirtless Steve-O.

Highlights from Hollywood’s big night

The hottest and most bizarre blue-carpet fashions

A complete list of this year’s nominees

“The best part about being on the carpet is just soaking up the all of the love,” advised a crown-sporting Flavor Flav, with a trademark clock around his neck and a glass of champagne in his hand. “I’m pulling for everybody. The reason why everybody be pulling for Flavor Flav is ’cause Flavor Flav is pulling for everybody.”

At the carpet’s halfway point (after SuChin Pak had pulled them aside for an interview, but before they reached MTV News guest reporter Rihanna), stars had to pass under a bridge overflowing with screaming fans. Surveying the scene, Sandra Bullock looked up at them and playfully teased: “Are you looking down people’s shirts?”

“These fans, they provide so much energy,” observed Eva Mendes, soaking in those up above as well as the armies of ear-piercing shriekers who surrounded her. “It’s so nice to have them here, because you can feel the love and support.”

Racing from interview to interview, Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly remained in character as NASCAR drivers from the August comedy “Talladega Nights.” Other stars, however, were themselves long enough to handicap a few nominees.

“The other categories show parts of movies that were great, but the Best Movie category shows what had the best overall everything,” actor and “Just a Friend” singer Mario said, before finally fessing up to who he’d be rooting for. “I’m pulling for ‘Wedding Crashers,’ that’s one of my favorites.”

Pondering his acceptance speech if he should win for Best Villain, Christensen promised “nothing too villainous. Hopefully everything will go smoothly, but there won’t be nothing too villainous. Being nominated is pretty cool, and these are good [awards], because the people vote for it.”

When the subject of conversation wasn’t the stars themselves or the acceptance speeches they had prepared, many offered words of encouragement to first-time host Jessica Alba just moments before she officially kicked off the festivities.

“Don’t suck,” warned Justin Timberlake, laughing. “I’m watching you. I’m a vet, and I’ll be watching you, Jessica.”

“She doesn’t need any advice,” Jessica Simpson grinned. “All she has to do is strut her stuff.”

“I’m excited and nervous,” Alba revealed, adding that she’d been through several rehearsals but never went so far as to practice her lines in front of the mirror. “That,” she laughed, “would be weird.”

As for “Wedding Crashers” co-star (and nominee for Breakthrough Performance) Isla Fisher, there was something extra-special that had her excited. “I’m looking forward to seeing Borat; he’s performing tonight, and he’s very funny.”

Fisher is actually engaged to Sacha Baron Cohen, the comedic chameleon behind the Movie Awards performer. “He’s very good-looking,” she said of Borat, “and I just want to make out with him.”

Fisher wasn’t disappointed once inside, thanks to Borat’s borderline NC-17 introduction of performers Gnarls Barkley. The quirky group proved itself equally as memorable, with a beautifully bizarre rendition of “Crazy.” Earlier in the evening, AFI busted out their latest single, “Miss Murder,” for its first TV performance, and Christina Aguilera did the same for “Ain’t No Other Man.”

“Amazing — she blew me away,” marveled Fisher, stunned by Aguilera’s performance. “I’ve never seen her live before. She’s so tiny, yet her pipes are sensational.”

“She’s got quite the voice,” Christensen concurred.

Meanwhile, “Dukes of Hazzard” co-star Jessica Simpson, sporting a skirt as short as her marriage to Nick Lachey, drove “Miami Vice” star Foxx so crazy that he seemed to forget the beatbox noises he was laying down for co-presenter Colin Farrell’s stroll across the stage.

For a few more days, many questions will linger: How did Jessica do as host? Who was it that screamed “Kelly Clarkson!” during an acceptance speech? And why, oh why, was Andy Dick whipping himself?

Like any feature film worth waiting for, the 2006 MTV Movie Awards will reveal all its highs and lows — and some very happy endings — this Thursday at 8:30 p.m. Popcorn is optional.

For complete, up-to-the-minute info on the show, the nominees and host Jessica Alba, visit our Movies Awards site.

MTV award for Star Wars villain

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

Star Wars star Hayden Christensen has been named best villain in the 2006 MTV Movie awards.
The actor won the golden popcorn award for playing Darth Vader in the final film Episode III - Revenge of the Sith.

The award for best hero went to Batman star Christian Bale for his starring role in Batman Begins.

There was also a lifetime achievement award for Lemony Snicket star Jim Carrey. The awards ceremony will be screened on MTV on 8 June.

Celebs ‘Bag’ Lingerie, Jewels, Toys, Trips At Movie Awards

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

You’ve heard the clichés a million times: It’s an honor to win; it’s great just to be nominated. Every year at dozens of awards

shows, the stars deck themselves out in dapper suits and designer dresses, waving, posing and even offering polite golf claps when they lose. But let’s be honest — what really excites many celebrities is the one prize that even losers take home.

With that in mind, the 2006 MTV Movie Awards has kept with an — ahem — rich tradition by dishing out some serious swag this year. Boasting an estimated total value exceeding $17,000, one thing is certain: Even Paris Hilton’s gonna want to grab one of these.

(Check out photos of the 2006 MTV Movie Awards gift basket here.)

What the hotel heiress and a huge array of other stars found inside their Movie Awards “gift baskets” is a head-spinning array of the latest high-end technology, exclusive fashion necessities and exotic travel getaways.

Attendees received a luscious fruit-floral-chocolate mix courtesy of Missoni, which pairs up nicely with Beyond Technology’s e-Bright teeth-whitening system. Other luxurious items included robes, slippers, sleep masks, flip-flops and “overnight softening gloves and socks” from Bath Accessories Group. Should someone need more than just whiter teeth or a little relaxation, Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. David Sayah gifted free consultations.

The male demographic tuning in to the Movie Awards audience would no doubt loved to have taken a peek backstage, where beauties like Famke Janssen, Amanda Bynes and Rebecca Romijn might have been trying on some Cosabella lingerie from the new Forever collection: a padded soft bra, low-rider thong and low-rider bikinis. Female viewers might also have appreciated a peek backstage, to see those actresses busting out their T3 Tourmalines, the so-called “Rolex of hairdryers.” Claiming to be the lightest, fastest and quietest hairdryer in the world, it makes one ponder the ultimate hypothetical showdown: The revolutionary appliance in one corner, and the pre-waxed, soaking wet chest hair of “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” nominee Steve Carell in the other.

The 2006 Movie Awards were led by male-dominated films like “Virgin” and “Wedding Crashers,” so it was only right that Justin Timberlake went home with something he didn’t have to fork over to Cameron Diaz. Maybe he’ll want to play with the Superman, Napoleon Dynamite or Kamhi World “40-Year-Old-Virgin” action figures, or maybe he’ll instead spread the love to his wheels with a License2Bling license plate frame, embedded with Swarovski crystals. After that, perhaps Justin will invite over Owen Wilson, Hayden Christensen and Will Ferrell, and they can all take turns playing with their brand-new copies of the nearly photo-realistic video game version of “The Godfather.”

As the stars load up the arms of their entourages with the three(!) designer bags needed to contain this year’s goodies, they’ll likely give them one all-encompassing order: Keep your grubby hands off the electronics. If Jamie Foxx happened to need a portable DVD player and a one-year subscription to Netflix, well, he’s in luck. If Kate Beckinsale was looking to sink her teeth into a portable device, she’ll no doubt be psyched about her new PocketSurfer, a portable Web browser that will allow her to shop, check stock quotes and even approve the latest stills e-mailed to her from the “Click” set photographer. Christina Aguilera spends countless months out on the road touring, so it only makes sense that she’ll now sporting a Samsung Helix and one year of XM2go Satellite Radio with MP3, which allows her to bookmark “Genie in a Bottle” whenever it comes on and then purchase it through Napster, essentially paying herself.

Good thing the bags come with handles, because they’ll be that much easier to tote when the celebs take off for a weekend getaway. First off, they can disguise themselves from the paparazzi with sunglasses by Fendi-Marchon, then they can slip into something more comfortable — like the Seven for All Mankind jeans made exclusively for the 2006 Movie Awards. Next they can sneak off to La Costa Hotel & Spa for a getaway that includes private accommodations, dinner and a romantic “spa journey” in a VIP suite. Perhaps Kate Hudson could hang poolside in her new Salinas bikini swimwear, while Matt Dillon could kick it old-school in his limited-edition Vans slip-ons. Oh, and if heavily adorned Gnarls Barkley whirlwind Cee-Lo wants to dial things back a bit before kicking it in the sun, Tattoo MD will be handing him a $1,000 gift certificate toward laser tattoo removal.

If you want to catch a glimpse of all these sweet items in the months to come, keep your eyes on the movie premieres, talk-show appearances and wardrobe-dissecting magazine features that they’ll undoubtedly be flaunting them in — after all, that’s why so many companies are eager to make like Anthony Kiedis and give it away. And if a bag happens to spill on its way to the trunk of a celebrity Escalade, some bystanders might dive on that Swarovski crystal chandelier pendant. The real movie geeks, however, will be on the official “Superman Returns” package (action figure, dog tag and “inflato-suit”!) faster than awards presenter Samuel L. Jackson can throw a snake off a plane.

Movie File

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

Darth Vader, the times they are a-changin’! Hayden Christensen recently wrapped one of his first post-”Star Wars” projects, an indie film that had him channeling one of rock and roll’s biggest legends. “In ‘Factory Girl,’ I play this sort of folk-singer star, based on a Bob Dylan-ish sort of character,” said Christensen. “It’s a movie about Edie Sedgwick, who was this actress and New York socialite back in the ’60s. She was hanging out with Dylan briefly.” Featuring Sienna Miller as Sedgwick, Guy Pearce as Andy Warhol and cameos by Jimmy Fallon and Mary-Kate Olsen, the drama gave Christensen a chance to transform into one of his idols, a job he said was made easier by his natural tendency to mumble. “I do that on my own anyway,” he laughed. “I definitely took my cue from Dylan. I’m a massive fan.” The film is due in theaters this fall, and Christensen hopes it will give him an excuse to rub elbows with the tambourine man himself at the premiere. “I’ve never met the man,” the actor lamented. “But maybe, one day.” …

Vader Rules the 2006 MTV Movie Awards

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

Amongst the hottest stars in Hollywood, the Dark Lord of the Sith was honored as only MTV could — with a golden trophy and a tribute from one of the coolest bands dominating the charts.
MTV honored actor Hayden Christensen with the coveted golden popcorn tub trophy as he won in the Best Villain category for portraying Darth Vader in Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith. In his humble acceptance speech, he thanked filmmaker George Lucas for giving him “the chance to play such a cool character.” Other nominations for Episode III included actor Ewan McGregor as Best Hero, as well as Christensen and McGregor for Best Fight.

To continue the Star Wars love, the band Gnarls Barkley performed their hit song “Crazy” donning authentic costumes from the Star Wars saga which included lead singer Cee-Lo as Darth Vader, Danger Mouse as Obi-Wan Kenobi, and drummer Chris Vrenna as Chewbacca, among many others. “It was an honor to wear the Wookiee costume,” Vrenna says.

Of course, this isn’t the first time MTV has given Star Wars characters the royal rock treatment. Previous MTV Movie Awards shows have honored Star Wars characters over the years. In 2003, Jedi Master Yoda received a prestigious MTV Award in the category of “Best Fight” for his show-stopping duel with Count Dooku in Attack of the Clones. And in 2000, the podrace in The Phantom Menace received an MTV Movie Award for “Best Action Sequence” of the year. Most memorably, in 1997, Chewbacca appeared on the MTV Movie Awards and was given a Lifetime Achievement medal by actress Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia Organa) to make up for the Wookiee not receiving a medal during the closing celebration A New Hope.

Next For Movie Awards’ Alba, Ferrell And Christensen? Serial Killers, Figure Skating

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

Stars look forward to upcoming projects that range from serious dramas to outrageously ridiculous comedies.

The all-star crowd has dispersed, Jessica Alba has returned to her day job, Steve-O has put his shirt back on and the janitors are almost done sweeping up all that confetti dumped by AFI.

Another MTV Movie Awards ceremony is behind us, and as stars like Steve Carell, Hayden Christensen and Isla Fisher put their shiny new Golden Popcorn trophies on their mantelpieces, fans may be wondering: what next?

Alba, this year’s Movie Awards hostess with the most-ess, boasts one of the strongest upcoming film slates. Future Best Kiss and Sexiest Performance nominations seem like a no-brainer as the 25-year-old slips back into leather chaps for “Sin City 2,” this time toughening up to reflect her character’s despondency over the death of her beloved Hartigan (Bruce Willis).

Around the same time, Alba will be hanging with the Silver Surfer for “Fantastic Four 2,” the superhero sequel that plans to introduce the Marvel Comics character as an ambiguous new friend of Sue Storm’s family (see “Alba Says ‘Fantastic Four 2′ Will Be ‘Exciting, Hot, New, Fresh’ “). Continuing with a schedule that would exhaust Ryan Seacrest, the actress also has the psychological thriller “Awake” due in theaters near the end of this year, and the midlife-crisis comedy “Bill” will be shooting around the same time.

Similarly wide “Awake” is newly crowned Best Villain Hayden Christensen, who hopes audiences enjoy his stiff performance as the un-anesthetized operating-room patient in the movie, which also stars Terrence Howard. Christensen will then go from motionless to mumbling, appearing as a thinly veiled Bob Dylan-type character in “Factory Girl,” due later this year and set among the Andy Warhol-centered New York scene of the mid-’60s. Looking further down the line, the former Anakin will skywalk through the period film “Angels and Virgins,” the treasure-hunting thriller “Crash Bandits” and the cop-held-hostage hard-boiler “Poker Nights.”

Dame Judi Dench will explode into theaters in the next 12 months with … Oops! After Will Ferrell’s Movie Awards joke, we’ve still got the British thespian on the mind, but let’s talk about our favorite “Anchorman” instead. In case his plugging was too subtle, you should know that Ferrell and his Awards date John C. Reilly have the NASCAR comedy “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby,” in theaters on August 4. Ferrell is currently filming the figure-skating comedy “Blades of Glory” alongside Jon Heder (due out next March), which also co-stars “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” nominee for Breakthrough Performance and Best On-Screen Team, Romany Malco.

Malco’s “Virgin” co-star, Carell, can thank Kelly Clarkson for his own lengthy list of upcoming gigs. Between trips to “The Office,” the red-hot star has been squeezing in “Evan Almighty,” a sequel to the Jim Carrey classic “Bruce Almighty,” that has Carell’s character building an enormous ark to please God (Morgan Freeman). “Evan” is due in theaters next June, and next month festival fave “Little Miss Sunshine” will get its release. He’ll also be shooting comedies ranging from “Dan in Real Life” (Carell falls in love with his brother’s girlfriend) to “Juvenile” (he’s sent to an adolescent prison for a crime he committed years earlier) to “Get Smart” (based on the classic TV show).

Jake Gyllenhaal told the world that he was dreaming about the Best Kiss trophy when he locked lips with Heath Ledger, but his back-to-back kiss awards chances seem slim considering his next role in “Zodiac,” a serial-killer thriller. Directed by the acclaimed David Fincher (“Fight Club”), Gyllenhaal has marveled over the intensely recreated murder scenes that dropped himself and co-stars Mark Ruffalo and Robert Downey Jr. into the horrors of the mid-’70s murder spree. The flick is expected in theaters late 2006 or early 2007.

The “Wedding Crashers” duo will be pushing their way into plenty of films over the next year, with Vince Vaughn already riding high at the box office with “The Break-Up” and Owen Wilson starring as a high-maintenance houseguest in July 14′s “You, Me and Dupree.” Vaughn will continue to dodge “Old School 2″ scripts while finishing the filming of the Sean Penn drama “Into the Wild,” followed by a 180-turn into “Joe Claus,” a holiday comedy about Santa’s ne’er-do-well older brother. Audiences can currently hear Wilson’s voice as hot-rod Lightning McQueen in “Cars,” and will see the rest of him when he teams with Harold Ramis (“Groundhog Day”) on a currently untitled comedy about a slacker caveman. Wilson will also have a tiny cameo as a tiny cowboy in this December’s Ben Stiller comedy “Night at the Museum.”

Vaughn and Wilson won’t have the luxury of having their “Crashers” co-star and Breakthrough Performance winner Isla Fisher in their upcoming projects, however, as the chameleon-esque beauty will bring her considerable charms to several different and impressively varied projects. First up is “The Pleasure of Your Company,” a dark comedy directed by cult comic Michael Ian Black, which has a lovelorn Jason Biggs spontaneously proposing marriage to a stranger (Fisher).

After that film hits theaters later this year, Fisher will resurface in “The Lookout,” a crime thriller co-starring the up-and-coming Joseph Gordon-Levitt (“Brick”). Her show-stealing fiance, the equally transformative Sacha Baron Cohen, will bring the controversial comedy stylings of “Borat” to theaters in November. We can only hope that Jessica Simpson and her Daisy Dukes make it to the premiere.

Hayden Mention

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

From Pete Wentz Journal
(Bass player for Fall Out Boy)
I think I freaked Hayden Christiansen out further by
following him around the Toronto airport today talking about Star Wars. it was pretty sweet”

Christensen now parked at ICM

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

Hayden Christensen and his Forest Park Pictures production banner have signed with ICM. The actor, known for his work in the most recent “Star Wars” features, will star opposite Jessica Alba in the thriller “Awake” for the Weinstein Co. Christensen, who had been with CAA, continues to be repped by attorney Steve Warren of Hansen Jacobson Teller Hoberman Newman Warren Sloan & Richman. (Staff report)


Saturday, February 28th, 2009

STAR WARS castmates SAMUEL L JACKSON and HAYDEN CHRISTENSEN are set to reunite on the big screen for a time travelling drama. The actors were slated to star in a project called POKER NIGHT but, according to Jackson, that project is now dead and the pair are looking to team up in director DOUG LIMAN’s JUMPER, based on the hit STEVEN GOULD novel. PULP FICTION star Jackson tells website the story follows a kid from a broken home who discovers that he has the ability to teleport. In his quest to find the man he believes is responsible for the death of his mother, the child draws the attention of the National Security Agency (NSA). Jackson will play the NSA agent tracking the jumper, played by Christensen.