Jami Philbrick

Jami Philbrick

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In the past few years, actor/director Kenneth Branagh has taken what he learned over decades of adapting William Shakespeare plays for the big screen and has applied it to reinventing some of Hollywood’s most beloved film franchises.  

Branagh is best know for directing such popular Shakespeare film adaptations as Henry V, Much Ado About Nothing (1993), Hamlet (1996), Love’s Labour’s Lost, and As You Like It. He also directed Dead Again, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, and the remake of Sleuth, as well as appearing in such high profile movies as Wild Wild West, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Valkyrie, Pirate Radio, and My Week with Marilyn, which earned him an Academy Award-nomination for Best Supporting Actor. But in recent years the actor/filmmaker has surprisingly directed such fan-favorite projects as the film adaptation of the Marvel comic book Thor, a reboot of the Tom Clancy series called Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, and now a live-action version of the classic Disney animated movie Cinderella, which opens in theaters on March 13th. 

The new film is a reinvention of the classic fairy tale and was written by Academy Award-nominee Chris Weitz (About a Boy). In Cinderella, when her father (Ben Chaplin) unexpectedly passes away, young Ella (Lily James) finds herself at the mercy of her cruel stepmother (Cate Blanchett) and her daughters. Never one to give up hope, Ella's fortunes begins to change after meeting a dashing stranger in the woods, who turns out to be the Prince (Richard Madden). In addition, the film also features performances from Nonso Anozie (Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit), Stellan Skarsgard (Nymphomaniac: Vol. I), Hayley Atwell (The Sweeney), and Helena Bonham Carter (Fight Club) as the Fairy Godmother. 

I recently had the absolute honor of sitting down with the great Kenneth Branagh to talk about his work on Cinderella. The extremely accomplished actor and filmmaker discussed his latest movie, how adapting Shakespeare plays prepared him for his current work, sifting through years of mythology to find the best story, redefining Cinderella for a new generation, casting Cate Blanchett and Helena Bonham Carter as the Stepmother and Fairy Godmother respectively, finding the right actress to play the title role, and why he decided to include the mice from the animated film in his live-action adaptation. 

Monday, 09 March 2015 01:11

IAR SET VISIT: 'Get Hard'

Are you ready to Get Hard

Opening in theaters on March 27th is the new comedy entitled Get Hard, which stars comedic powerhouses Will Ferrell (Casa de Mi Padre, The Campaign) and Kevin Hart (About Last Night, The Wedding Ringer). 

The film follows businessman James King (Ferrell), who is wrongfully convicted of tax evasion. He hires his former employee Darnell Lewis (Hart), who he incorrectly thinks has served time in jail, to teach him how to survive his upcoming 10-year prison sentence. In addition to Ferrell and Hart, the movie also features performances from Alison Brie (The Lego Movie), T.I. (Identity Thief), Matt Walsh (Into the Storm), Dan Bakkedahl (Four Dogs), and Paul Ben-Victor (Don Jon). Get Hard was produced by Ferrell and Adam McKay (Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, We The Economy), and directed by longtime screenwriter Etan Cohen (Men in Black 3). 

Last year I had the pleasure of traveling to New Orleans, Louisiana (along with a few other members of the press) to visit the set of Get Hard and talk with some of the cast and crew about the film. While on set, I had a chance to speak with director Etan Cohen, as well as actors Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart. I also had a chance to tour one of the sets, as well as watch Ferrell and Hart shoot a scene.

Opening in theaters on March 6th is the new dramatic thriller from first time feature filmmaker Riley Stearns called Faults. The movie stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Smashed), Leland Orser (Morning), Beth Grant (The Artist), Jon Gries (Bad Turn Worse), and Lance Reddick (John Wick).  

IAR's Managing Editor Jami Philbrick recently had the absolute pleasure of sitting down with Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Leland Orser and Riley Stearns to talk about their work on Faults. The first time filmmaker and two extremely talented actors discussed their new movie, Orser and Winstead's initial reactions to the screenplay, having fun playing their exhausting roles, Stearns' fascination with cults, what advice Orser (who directed his own wife Jeanne Tripplehorn in Morning) gave married couple Stearns and Winstead about working together, and if Winstead is planning to appear in her husband's next movie. 

Opening in theaters on March 6th is the new film from comedic actor Adam Carolla (The Hammer) called Road Hard, which he also co-wrote and co-directed. In addition to Carolla the movie also stars Diane Farr (TV's Numb3rs), David Alan Grier (Peeples), Jay Mohr (Jerry Maguire), David Koechner (Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues), Illeana Douglas (Cape Fear), Howie Mandel (Gremlins), and Larry Miller (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang). 

IAR's Managing Editor Jami Philbrick recently had the pleasure of traveling to Carolla Digital Studios and sitting down with the great Adam Carolla to talk about his work on Road Hard. The hilarious comedian and filmmaker discussed his new movie, loosely basing it on his own life, his friendship with former partner Jimmy Kimmel, working with fellow Loveline alumni Diane Farr, legendary stand-up comedian Larry Miller's out-of-control character, and why he belongs in another movie. 

Opening in theaters on February 27th is the new action thriller from director Joe Lynch (Knights of Badassdom) called Everly, which stars Academy Award-nominee Salma Hayek (Savages, Puss in Boots).

IAR's Managing Editor Jami Philbrick recently had the pleasure of sitting down with director Joe Lynch to talk about his work on Everly. The fan-favorite filmmaker discussed his new movie, why he is so proud of it, writing for a female lead character, the importance of casting Salma Hayek, and her major contributions to the film.

Available on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD beginning March 3rd is the new animated family film from DisneyToon Studios called Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverBeast, which is the seventh movie in the popular Tinker Bell franchise. The film was directed by Steve Loter (The Penguins of Madagascar), and stars Ginnifer Goodwin (Walk the Line, TV's Once Upon a Time), Mae Whitman (The DUFF), Rosario Dawson (Gimme Shelter), Lucy Liu (Kill Bill: Vol. 1), Raven-Symone (Doctor Dolittle), Pamela Adlon (TV's Louie), Chloe Bennet (TV's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Thomas Lennon (TV's Reno 911!) and Academy Award-winner Anjelica Huston (The Royal Tenenbaums). 

IAR's Managing Editor Jami Philbrick recently traveled to DisneyToon Studios and sat down with Ginnifer Goodwin to talk about her work on Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverBeast. The talented actress discussed her new film, exploring the Peter Pan universe, her approach to voice work, her character's innocent love for animals, her own relationship with her pets, and what her husband said after he saw the movie - "Tinker Bell made me cry!"

NOTE: We apologize for the video's poor audio. 

Producer Jason Blum is taking over Hollywood! 

After founding his company Blumhouse Productions in 2000, he went on to produce some of the most successful horror thrillers of the last fifteen years including the Paranormal Activity franchise, Sinister, The Purge, Insidious: Chapter 2, Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones, Oculus, The Purge: Anarchy, Ouija, and The Boy Next Door. Not to mention that later this year Blumhouse will release the highly anticipated new movie Jem and the Holograms, which is based on the popular ‘80s cartoon. The super-producer also recently won an Emmy for his work on the HBO mini-series The Normal Heart, and was nominated for an Academy Award for producing Whiplash. But now, Blum returns to the genre he helped reinvent with the new horror film The Lazarus Effect, which opens in theaters on February 27th. 

In the new movie, which was directed by documentary filmmaker David Gelb (Jiro Dreams of Sushi), a group of medical students discover a way to bring dead animals back to life. But when Zoe (Olivia Wilde) accidentally dies, her husband Frank (Mark Duplass) forces the group to help bring his wife back from the dead. While the experiment is successful, things become dangerous when they realize that Zoe’s personality has been altered. In addition to Wilde and Duplass, the film also stars Donald Glover (The To Do List), Sarah Bolger (In America), and Evan Peters (X-Men: Days of Future Past). 

I recently had the pleasure of sitting down with producer Jason Blum to talk about his work on The Lazarus Effect, as well as Jem and the Holograms, and The Purge 3. The Academy Award-nominated producer discussed The Lazarus Effect, its cinematic influences, faith vs. science, his friendship with Mark Duplass, Olivia Wilde’s difficult role, working with first time narrative filmmaker David Gelb, Blum’s role on set, the current status of Jem and the Holograms, and an update on the development of The Purge 3

Opening in theaters, VOD and iTunes on February 27th is the new documentary My Life Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, which follows the making of Only God Forgives. The film was directed by Liv Corfixen (Bleeder), and features her husband - director Nicolas Winding Refn (Only God Forgives, Drive), and Ryan Gosling (Only God Forgives, Drive).

IAR's Managing Editor Jami Philbrick recently had the absolute pleasure of sitting down with directors Liv Corfixen and Nicolas Winding Refn to talk about their work on My Life Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn. The husband and wife directors discussed the new documentary, why Corfixen decided to make it, how Refn felt about being the subject of her film, their close family, their friendship with Ryan Gosling, how Refn and Gosling raised money for Only God Forgives, the joy of counting cold hard cash, paying off the Bangkok police, Refn's fear of not meeting expectations after making Drive, wanting to do something completely different, why Refn never knows what his films are about, if Corfixen knows what her documentary is about, if she plans to document Refn's next movie, if Refn was pleased with the final cut of Only God Forgives, and why Refn believes that "You've made great cinema when half the audience loves it and half the audience hates it."

Evan Peters is very quickly becoming a Hollywood movie star!

The actor began his career in the fighting films Never Back Down, and it’s sequel Never Back Down 2: The Breakdown, before eventually appearing in Kick-Ass and on all four seasons of the hit FX anthology series American Horror Story. But his big break came last summer when he sprinted on to the big screen as the Marvel comic book character Quicksilver in X-Men: Days of Future Past. Many critics praised Peters’ performance as one of the best aspects of the film. The actor is expected to reprise his role in the upcoming follow up X-Men: Apocalypse, and will also play former Deputy Assistant to President Nixon, Dwight Chapin in Elvis & Nixon. But first, Peters can be seen as part of the exceptional ensemble cast in the new horror thriller The Lazarus Effect, which opens in theaters on February 27th. 

In the new movie, a group of medical research students discover a way to bring dead animals back to life. But when Zoe (Olivia Wilde) accidentally dies, her husband Frank (Mark Duplass) forces the group to help bring his wife back from the dead. While the experiment is successful, the situation become dangerous when they realize that Zoe’s personality has been altered. Peters plays Clay, a member of the research team that has second thoughts about their experiments. In addition to Duplass, Wilde, and Peters, the film also stars Donald Glover (The To Do List), and Sarah Bolger (In America). The Lazarus Effect was produced by Jason Blum (Whiplash), and directed by documentary filmmaker David Gelb (Jiro Dreams of Sushi).

I recently had the absolute pleasure of sitting down with Evan Peters to talk about his work on The Lazarus Effect. The talented young actor discussed his new movie, its cinematic influences, scientific research, faith vs. science, collaborating  with documentary filmmaker David Gelb, what he needs from a director, working with Mark Duplass and Olivia Wilde, and how he created his character.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 23:25

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Apollo Robbins Talks 'Focus'

Opening in theaters on February 27th is the new crime drama called Focus, which was directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa (Crazy, Stupid, Love). The film stars Will Smith (Men in Black 3, I, Robot), Margot Robbie (The Wolf of Wall Street, About Time), Gerald McRaney (The Best of Me, The A-Team), Rodrigo Santoro (300: Rise of an Empire), Adrian Martinez (American Hustle), and BD Wong (Jurassic Park).

IAR's Managing Editor Jami Philbrick recently had the pleasure of sitting down with deception consultant and actor Apollo Robbins to talk about his work on Focus. He discussed the new movie, what skills he taught Will Smith and Margot Robbie, how to protect your wallet, and the art of pickpocketing.

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