It Chapter Two

Bill Hader Kept Ruining Scary IT Chapter 2 Takes By Smiling

The past few years have been very good for horror fans, as innovative and quality movies have arrived in theaters, and made a ton of money at the box office. This includes some remakes of classics, including Blumhouse’s Halloween and 2017’s IT. Pennywise the dancing clown will return to terrify audiences with IT: Chapter 2, picking up decades after the story wrapped up on the first movie.

There’s a fantastic cast attached to IT: Chapter 2, including James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, and Bill Hader. The latter is playing the adult version of foulmouthed Richie, taking on the role from Stranger Things favorite Finn Wolfhard. But it turns out that Hader actually kept ruining takes during filming. As the SNL alum revealed:

This is my first horror movie, and I’m terrible at acting scared, apparently. When I’m scared, I think I smile. Like, I get nervous and I smile… We would do takes and the director Andy Muschetti would come and he’s like, ‘Bill, you need to be scared, man.’ I go, I was terrified! He goes, ‘No man, you’re smiling the whole time. What’s wrong with you?’ And it’s true.

Well, that’s hilarious. We all have our own nervous tics, and it looks like Bill Hader tends to smile when he’s terrified. While that might work in his personal life, it tended to ruin the moment during sequences of IT: Chapter 2.

Bill Hader’s comments to Collider show how much levity is truly on the set of horror movies. While the finished product may give audiences nightmares, there’s plenty of times to crack jokes while filming movies like IT. Especially when one of the actors is smiling through the upcoming sequel’s most terrifying scenes. Whoops.

Fans of the first IT (aren’t we all?) are no doubt wondering what type of scares are ahead for the sequel, and which sequences are the ones that Bill Hader accidentally smiled through. The first movie was rife with jump scares, and horrifying imagery of Pennywise that makes the original miniseries look like a children’s story in comparison.

The casting of Bill Hader as Richie was a major selling point for IT: Chapter 2 before it began production. As soon as the first movie was released, fans began theorizing who could play the adult version of the Losers’ Club. Hader was actually suggested by Finn Wolfhard himself, as the young actor did press for the first film. And that came to fruition, much to the joy of both Wolfhard and the general public.

When IT: Chapter 2 arrives in theaters, adult Richie has become a successful DJ in Los Angeles. While that seems like the perfect career for him, he must return to Derry to follow through on his pact, and hopefully destroy Pennywise once and for all.

IT: Chapter 2 will arrive in theaters on September 6th, 2019. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

 

Frozen 2

Kristen Bell, Josh Gad and More Tease Frozen 2 With the Cutest Photos

Do you want to build a snowman…again?

Kristen Bell, Josh Gad, Idina Menzel and Jonathan Groff, who played Anna, Olaf the snowman, Elsa and Kristoff in Disney’s Frozen, have reunited for the upcoming sequel the hit 2013 animated film and promoted the new project with the cutest photos.

In one pic, which Gad posted on Instagram on Wednesday, the four stand around and make kissing gestures at a plush Sven the reindeer doll.

“Soon enough…” the actor wrote.

Gad also tagged Santino Fontana, who is not pictured and who portrayed Hans in Frozen. It is unclear if he will reprise his role.

He also tagged Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as Sven, raising quite a few eyebrows among fans. The actor, who played Maui in Disney’s 2016 animated hit Moana, is not slated to take part in Frozen 2, and in the first film, Sven does not speak.

Rambo 5

Rambo vs. Predator? Rambo V Was Originally Going To Be A Monster Movie

Rambo V: Last Blood is set to be Sylvester Stallone’s last time playing the iconic action hero, but his original take, titled Rambo V: The Savage Hunt, would have seen Rambo fighting a bloodthirsty monster. While there’s a certain recognizable formula to the Rambo series – the sequels typically feature Rambo on a rescue mission, a finale where he mans a gigantic machine gun to take on an entire army, a one-dimensional villain and his trademark knife getting progressively larger – the first four movies are still pretty distinct from one another. Indeed, First Blood features none of these elements, playing as more of a psychological thriller, while the kinetic action of Rambo: First Blood Part II stands in contrast to the dour, anti-war tone of 2008’s Rambo.
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Stallone has been the guiding voice of the series since the beginning, having a hand in the scripts, in addition to directing Rambo and, rumor has it, ghost directing Rambo: First Blood Part II. With both the Rambo and Rocky franchises, he’s proven he has a knack for creating sequels that feel like they have a purpose. The Rocky movies cover important milestones in that character’s life – while often mirroring Stallone’s own career – while the Rambo sequels find the traumatized hero constantly being drawn back to war despite wanting to move away from it.

Toy Story 4

Tom Hanks and Tim Allen Celebrate Wrapping ‘Toy Story 4’

Tom Hanks and Tim Allen have officially finished recording their parts for Toy Story 4. The actors each took to social media this week to announce that their work as Woody and Buzz Lightyear was done, for now, alongside emotional tributes to the project.

“Final line, final session as Woody of Toy Story 4,” Hanks, 62, captioned a photo of himself and the crew gathered in the studio on Wednesday. “We rode like the wind, to infinity and beyond. Hanx.”

Celebs like Ally Brooke, Katie Couric, Nia Vardalos and more couldn’t help but express their excitement and nostalgia in the comments.

Allen, meanwhile, reflected on wrapping the movie on Twitter. “Finished my Buzz for Toy Story 4 today and it got emotional. Wonderful full body story. You are all going to love the work this incredible team at Pixar created. We are all going to love this story….man its got everything,” he wrote.

Hanks and Allen’s posts come just days after the movie dropped a new look at Bo Peep, who didn’t appear in Toy Story 3. Toy Story 4 will also feature new characters like Forky, played by Tony Hale, and Ducky and Bunny, played by Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key.

Toy Story 4 hits theaters on June 21. See more in the video below.

Dark Phoenix

New X-Men: Dark Phoenix Stills Show Jessica Chastain With Sophie Turner, Magneto With His Brotherhood

Despite the odd spot that X-Men: Dark Phoenix finds itself in, marketing continues dropping stills, albeit at a slow pace. Two stills have found their way online in the last few days. The first one was released by Empire Magazine and shows Sophie Turner’s Jean Grey in the company of Jessica Chastain’s as yet unnamed, alien character. It appears Chastain is trying to influence her, which is what the central plot itself revolves around; apparently Chastain’s character unleashes the Dark Phoenix trapped inside Jean Grey for her own nefarious purposes.
X-Men Dark Phoenix Still 1 Jessica Chastain Sophie Turner

The second still seems to be an alternate version of a previously released one, as spotted by X-Men Films. It was dropped by Beast actor Nicholas Hoult on his social media and sees an injured Magneto (Michael Fassbender) with his early brotherhood of mutants, including the likes of Alexandra Snipp as Storm, Tye Sheridan as Cyclops, Andrew Stehlin as Red Lotus, Kodi Smit-McPhee as Nightcrawler, Kota Eberhardt as Selene and Hoult himself as Beast. The reason between the difference in stills could be narrowed down to either outtakes, or the extensive reshoots Dark Phoenix is undergoing after being delayed multiple times.
X-Men Dark Phoenix Still 2 Magneto Brotherhood

X-Men: Dark Phoenix simply known as Dark Phoenix is set for release on June 7, 2019. A trailer for the movie is available, with a second one expected to drop soon. Hans Zimmer will compose for the movie returning from his supposed retirement from superhero movies.

Alita: Battle Angel

The eyes! The eyes! Why does Alita: Battle Angel look so creepy?

Robert Rodriguez’s forthcoming live-action cyberpunk movie retains the character design of the manga on which it is based. What were they thinking?

Reviewers are on the fence about Robert Rodriguez’s Alita: Battle Angel. The consensus seems to be that it walks the fine line between being “a mesmerising feat of film-making” and “a very bad film”. But really, it doesn’t matter so long as everyone can agree on one thing: boy, those eyes are creepy.
Alita: Battle Angel review – lovestruck tweenies do battle in robot dystopia
3 out of 5 stars.
Read more

Perhaps you’ve seen the trailer, and are aware that the film-makers have decided essentially to turn the lead character into a photorealistic manga creation, complete with distractingly large eyes that look as though director Robert Rodriguez shot the whole thing through the second-worst Snapchat filter. It’s weird, right?

It’s so weird. The character is played by Rosa Salazar, a human woman with regular human woman eyes. Her normal human face is left looking humanoid, but her eyes have become so big that she looks like a 1960s Chuck Jones cartoon wolf that has just seen another, sexier wolf. There’s a moment early in the film’s trailer when Alita says to her love interest: “Does it bother you that I’m not completely human?” Presumably he has been labouring under the misapprehension that she is somehow actually a giant Bratz doll that has been brought harrowingly to life by a malevolent wizard.
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And it could have been worse. Eagle-eyed (not literally) fans have noticed that the film’s publicity materials have gradually toned down the bugged-out nature of Alita’s eyes. Between trailer releases, her design changed from “I am on drugs and I AM FREAKING OUT” to “I am just on drugs now” . It’s an improvement, but it still isn’t enough to stop you from thinking of the 1999 PlayStation advert about the girl with the giant head.

I may be completely on the wrong side of history, of course. Perhaps Alita: Battle Angel will be the vanguard of new movies in which characters have massive eyes or tiny mouths or chins that have been deliberately altered to resemble genitalia. Perhaps this is the future and I’m too slow to cotton on. Perhaps I’m the 2019 equivalent of the rubes who ran screaming from L’Arrivée d’un Train en Gare de La Ciotat, because I can’t shake the image of Alita going elbow-deep trying to fish out an errant contact lens. If that’s the case, then I reluctantly accept all future mockery.

But I’m not sure. I only know that my excitement about watching Alita: Battle Angel has been almost entirely extinguished by the fact that the lead character looks like the result of a drunken bunk-up between a robot and a bush baby. Nevertheless, I hope it does well enough to secure a sequel, if only because I want to see the scene in which she gets grit in her eye and has to spend the entire second act getting it hosed out with Optrex.

• Alita: Battle Angel is released in the UK on 6 February.
As 2019 begins…

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Captain Marvel

Captain Marvel has been screened, and first reactions are here ahead of Avengers Endgame

Reactions from a test screening for Captain Marvel have emerged, and one character reportedly stole the show.

Captain Marvel, the superhero film that will serve as a lead-up to the highly anticipated Avengers: Endgame, has been test screened. According to Collider.com editor-in-chief Steve Weintraub, the film was positively received.

He wrote on Twitter, “Hearing #CaptainMarvel screened. After it ended everyone was talking about the cat. Stole the show. Must. See. This. Movie. Stat.” The cat he is referring to is Goose, who even featured on a special poster. In the comics, Goose the cat is named Chewie, and belongs to an alien race which can transform into formidable monsters.

Lashana Lynch, a cast member, said in a recent interview, “It’s not fully a cat. It’s a mysterious cat. The cat does things that we didn’t expect for it to do, and it’s very surprising, and it could happen at random times.”

“I’ve been in a recent #CaptainMarvel test screening and I can vouch that Carol Danvers will be next Marvel’s face. Charismatic and imposing, Danvers came to stay. The movie is amazing and I’m still in a trance. This is female power, guys,” another person wrote on Twitter.

I’ve been in a recent #CaptainMarvel test screening and I can vouch that Carol Danvers will be next Marvel’s face.
Charismatic and imposing, Danvers came to stay. The movie is amazing and I’m still in a trance. This is female power, guys.
Congrats @MarvelStudios 💁🏼‍♀️💪🏻 pic.twitter.com/MHirNTdnHe
— The Troubledude (@TheTroubledude) January 31, 2019

Captain Marvel is the studio’s first solo film to feature a female superhero. The Wasp shared the title and screen space in Ant-Man and the Wasp, and Scarlett Johansson will reprise her role as Black Widow in an upcoming film.

Marvel typically holds press screenings for their films a couple of weeks ahead of release – this happened with Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 recently. Each film built on the positive buzz to score at the box office upon release.

Captain Marvel is rumoured to be a major player in the future of the MCU, poised to take over in a leadership role from the likes of Captain America and Iron Man.

In an interview to Entertainment Tonight, Samuel L Jackson, who plays a young Nick Fury in the 90s-set film, said about Captain Marvel, “She’s pretty much the strongest character — in terms of someone with powers are able to do things — in the Marvel universe. So, for Carol Danvers to be that person and for Brie to become that person, it’s gonna be a dynamite thing. I mean, [the Avengers] are up against some really, really tough odds right now — we saw throughout Infinity War — so now we know that we need something that’s as powerful as Thanos. And at some point, we’ll find out how powerful she is and all the things that she’s capable of. She’s one of the few people in the Marvel universe that can time travel.”

The film stars Oscar-winner Brie Larson in the lead role, with a cast that includes Jackson, Jude Law, Lee Pace, Djimon Hounsou and others. The film is scheduled for release in March, and will be followed by Avengers Endgame in April.

Avengers EndGame

Which Avengers will live and die in Avengers: Endgame

Why Captain America probably won’t survive Avengers: Endgame. And why Black Panther will.

This article contains spoilers regarding the end of Avengers: Infinity War.

At the end of Avengers: Infinity War, most of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes could have gone home in an ashtray. Thanos, the mad Titan obsessed with overpopulation and its toll on the universe’s finite resources, finally assembled the Infinity Gauntlet — and used its power to decimate half of all life in the universe.

The ending was single-handedly the most shocking thing to happen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe since its creation more than a decade ago.

Marvel movies, like their comic book source material, interlock and set the table for the others. For example, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’s universe-jumping set up a bridge to Thor: Ragnarok and its wormhole-jumping. Thor: Ragnarok then set up Infinity War with a post-credits scene in which Thanos attacked the Asgardian rescue ship. And in Infinity War, the Guardians’ encounter with Thor called back to the way Guardians Vol. 2 established that the Guardians and Thor live in a shared world.

But then Infinity War presented something of a dead end. The movie ended with a cliffhanger and a question: Who is going to save the day after so many Avengers bit the dust?

Because so many major MCU characters — Black Panther, Spider-Man, and Star-Lord, to name a few — were dusted at the end of Infinity War, the only thing the movie really set up is its story’s inevitable resolution (and the presumed resurrection of at least a few of those dusted characters) in Avengers: Endgame.

So in the meantime, to maintain the mystery of what lies ahead, the promotions for Endgame have only featured characters who survived Infinity War, and a stark lack of any forward progress or fight scenes.

Further, the only Marvel movie that will come out in 2019 before Endgame is Captain Marvel, an origin story of its titular hero that’s set in the 1990s, and thus takes place before the events of Infinity War and all of Marvel’s superhero movies aside from Captain America: The First Avenger (which was set in 1942).

Setting Captain Marvel in the ’90s allows the studio to release a solo superhero movie between Infinity War and Endgame without affecting any story connections that were previously established in other films. Captain Marvel will also open the door for Captain Marvel to help save the day in Endgame.

How To Train Your Dragon The Hidden World

How exactly does a How to Train Your Dragon dragon get created?

Simon Otto, who’s served as the longtime head of character animation on the DreamWorks fantasy film series, knows the trick to crafting compelling dragons worthy of inclusion in the acclaimed animated universe, which finishes with a bang (and a few ugly-cries) this February with the release of the trilogy’s third and final film, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World.

Be it major foe or minor pet, no new dragon is written nor designed haphazardly. Otto emphasizes that director Dean DeBlois’ scripts lay out the specific story significance of every new dragon, offering a firm, rooted starting point for Otto and his team of designers to get to work. What happens from go, however, is less a meticulous design process and more a colorful, messy, gorgeous series of creative experiments that result in the clever concepts and surprising features behind each dragon you see populating Hiccup’s vivid world.

“With maybe the exception of the real background, background dragons, every dragon has a purpose in the story that’s written into the script and from there, we typically look at things we see and can recognize in nature,” says Otto. “And then, with every dragon, I call it the dragon salad mixing bowl: you just throw in all these ingredients and at the end you pour a sauce over and you shake it really well, and hopefully you get the dragon that you want.”

Exclusively for EW, Otto breaks down the ingredients and design behind five of the most significant new dragons you’ll meet in Hidden World (in theaters Feb. 22).

Light Fury

The most important new addition to Hidden World came with a simple directive: A female counterpart for Toothless, with unexpected design elements that would elevate her beyond being just another Night Fury with a passion for black. DeBlois’ script detailed the behavior of the character in deep, helpful specifics. “She was so feral on the page,” recalls Otto. “And she was so uninterested in being near humans, partly because she was afraid, and in that sense she really represented pureness and nature.” So naturally, a pure white color concept emerged.

Otto’s team pulled additional creature inspiration from snow leopards, axolotls (a rare Mexican salamander), and terns (a sea bird, almost like a seagull). All three species share sleek, clean appearances that provided a handful of physical idiosyncrasies which the designers could apply to Toothless and see how much each influence might change a Night Fury’s appearance.

“We also asked ourselves, if Toothless is a lion and the Light Fury is a lioness, how does nature differentiate between female and male?” says Otto. “So she has stubbier ears, a narrower ribcage, she’s a little bit more streamlined… It’s a tricky, tough balance because she could have very easily turned into My Little Pony and had lots of rainbow colors and [appealed] to that basic idea we might have of what that type of character could look like. We have a little bit of that, but just the right amount so that it still feels like this could happen in nature.”

The last surprising element of the Light Fury isn’t so much in her design as her power: a peculiar ability to heat her own scales until they reflect the environment, thus rendering herself essentially invisible to those around her. Toothless’ jealousy: quite visible.
DreamWorks Animation

Crimson Goregutter

There’s an argument to be made that this big burly beast sets the entire plot of Hidden World into motion. Village leader Hiccup has by now led more than a few expeditions to rescue downed or detained dragons like the Goregutter — but the sheer size of this new addition to Berk may be the metaphorical straw that breaks the island’s very-not-metaphorical back. “We wanted to present this prehistoric, giant dragon that may not be as big as the alphas in [the first two films], but is big enough that Hiccup is not really seeing that, even though he’s saving this dragon from captivity, he’s bringing home a huge problem that they really don’t have space for,” says Otto.

The Goregutter’s design is a remarkable example of Otto’s dragon-salad-bowl concept — in this case, the blending of an elk and a fish. “Dean had gone on a trip to some museum and in this museum was a skeleton of a prehistoric elk that had these humongous antlers, and he thought that was a really cool idea to design a dragon that’s so big, it’s actually almost a docile creature. We then mixed the design with an old perch fish — fish that basically look like old people, with very grandfather-looking faces.”
DreamWorks Animation

Deathgripper

As terrifying as Hidden World’s villain Grimmel (voiced by F. Murray Abraham) may be, his anesthetized pack of razor-sharp minions is even more frightening — so much so, they may be the scariest dragons the series has ever shown. “I think so, yes, they’re the most intimidating, fiercest-looking dragons,” says Otto of the formidable species. “Obviously besides the big dragons from the first and second movies, which are impressive by size, the Deathgrippers and the way they walk on their pincers and slink around and hunt in packs makes them, I think, the most scary of the dragons.”

Immune to the call of an alpha, the Deathgrippers are a species that prey together and function within themselves. “We looked at scorpions, black widows, certain types of really crazy hunting dogs,” notes Otto. “These dragons had to be really fierce and dangerous from the moment they first appear. With villains and in particular villains’ henchmen, you have to understand them immediately, clearly, from the first shot you see them.”

Yet there are hidden layers to the Deathgripper design, which highlights a challenge Otto gave his design team very early on in the HTTYD trilogy: every dragon must have something surprising to it, unseen at the audience’s first glance. “Look at the way Valka’s dragon in the second film could all of a sudden unfold a second set of wings,” Otto points out. “We want to make every one of our dragons interesting and intriguing, so the idea for the Deathgrippers was that they could reveal a scorpion pincer from the tail, or they could protrude their tusks and pull them in, or do other things to get themselves into a heightened, surprising state by changing aspects of their body.”
DreamWorks Animation

Fishmeat (Gronckle)

The franchise has showcased the vast adorability of dragon babies before (see: the Christmas special!), but one baby gets a glamorous makeover — and a name — in Hidden World. Meet Fishmeat, an infant Gronckle whom Fishlegs (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) carries around throughout the film to simultaneously cute and detrimental degree.

“In the script, there was this idea that Fishlegs becomes a surrogate parent to one of the Gronckles and he would take this baby everywhere since he’s such a dragon nerd,” says Otto. “Early on in one of the animation tests, we tested giving Fishlegs a backpack and sticking the baby in it, and then later on we thought, ‘Well, what if it’s like a Babybjörn?’ And that just really worked. We sold the producers and Dean on it immediately. There was so much humor that could then be written into the script just by adding that idea, and that relationship was really cute to develop.”

Almost as cute, perhaps, as Fishmeat himself. “We’ve shown Baby Gronckles before, but we made this one as cute as can be,” Otto chuckles. “We freshened him up and really made him a star.”
DreamWorks Animation

Hobgobbler

And then there’s this thing. All you need to know about the pint-sized Hobgobbler is this: You’re far more familiar with its real-world basis than you might think. “Dean wanted to have a French bulldog dragon in the movie because he has three Frenchies, so that’s really what the Hobgobbler is,” laughs Otto, who points out the character’s tendency to show up when least wanted. Still, there are unexpected pieces to its influence. “It’s a mix between a Frenchie bulldog and a rainforest frog… and also a beachball.”