May 17, 2013 | 9:01 a.m.
Guillermo del Toro served as a guest of honor at the fourth annual Hero Complex Film Festival last weekend in Hollywood, appearing on stage for a Q&A between screenings of two Spanish-language movies — “The Devil’s Backbone,” the 2001 gothic horror movie set during the Spanish Civil War; and “Pan’s Labyrinth,” his Academy Award-winning dark fantasy set during Francoist Spain. While taking questions from the audience, Del Toro elaborated on his planned adaptation of DC Comics’ “Justice League Dark,” saying that he wanted to focus on characters including Constantine, Deadman, Etrigan, Swamp Thing and Floronic Man. “I was never a superhero guy,” Del Toro said. “I thought I could do some of the edgier, darker stuff. “One of my most cherished memories when I was a kid was running to the drug store, the newsstand, on my bike to get […]
May 17, 2013 | 8:00 a.m.
With 2009′s “Star Trek,” filmmaker J.J. Abrams breathed new life into one of science fiction’s most venerable franchises. His sleek cinematic reboot re-introduced moviegoers to brash but loyal Capt. James T. Kirk and his level-headed foil Spock, played with a winning hint of modern bromance by Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto. Now, Abrams has returned to the USS Enterprise with “Star Trek Into Darkness,” which beams into theaters on a course toward what’s expected to be a roughly $100-million opening. The Times’ Betsy Sharkey raved in her review that the film, “bursting at the seams with enemies, wears its politics, its mettle, its moxie and its heart on its ginormous 3-D sleeve.” She went on to describe the movie as the best release of the summer movie season so far. Late last month, before Abrams embarked on a whirlwind publicity […]
May 16, 2013 | 5:50 p.m.
Guillermo del Toro served as a guest of honor at the fourth annual Hero Complex Film Festival this past weekend in Hollywood, appearing on stage for a Q&A between screenings of two of his most personal films, the Spanish-language movies “The Devil’s Backbone,” a 2001 gothic horror movie set during the Spanish Civil War, and “Pan’s Labyrinth,” his Academy Award-winning dark fantasy set during Francoist Spain. The writer-director talked about the ways his children have influenced his work — “If I had not had my two daughters, I couldn’t have written, much less do, ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’ because the girl Ofelia is very much based in how much admiration I have for their character,” Del Toro said. He talked about “Pan’s” as a film very much about “choice and disobedience.” “It was very important for me to make a movie in […]
May 16, 2013 | 5:32 p.m.
Will a Wonder Woman TV series ever get off the ground? The CW isn’t giving up yet. The network had been developing a pilot called “Amazon” about teenaged Diana (think “Smallville’s” pre-Superman Clark Kent), but the series was passed over for the CW’s fall lineup. When asked Thursday if the warrior princess could still come to the CW, network President Mark Pedowitz said, “Oh God, yes! “It is being redeveloped,” he said. “We’re waiting for the script to come in. We have not seen it yet. We are preparing to pilot it off-cycle should the script be what we want it to be.” Pedowitz said that although “the basics” were all there, the execution was lacking. “We do not want to do something that doesn’t work for that particular character,” he said. “It’s the trickiest of all the DC characters […]
May 16, 2013 | 3:58 p.m.
Two classic Studio Ghibli films are getting the Blu-ray treatment. Disney is releasing Hayao Miyazaki’s “My Neighbor Totoro” and “Howl’s Moving Castle” on May 21. This year marks the 25th anniversary for “My Neighbor Totoro,” which follows sisters Satsuki and Mei (voiced by Dakota and Elle Fanning, respectively, in the Blu-ray’s 2005 Disney dubbing) as they move to the countryside and discover their new neighbor, a furry forest spirit named Totoro. Only children can see the strange animal ghost — “a seven-foot forest spirit who looks like an outsized cross between a bunny rabbit and a fuzzy throw pillow,” critic and historian Charles Solomon wrote in his 1993 Times review of the film. “Guided by their supernatural friend, the sisters share a series of adventures, soaring over the landscape while Totoro’s roars make the winds blow,” Solomon wrote. “But the story […]
May 16, 2013 | 2:08 p.m.
Guillermo del Toro served as a guest of honor at the fourth annual Hero Complex Film Festival this past weekend in Hollywood, appearing on stage for a Q&A between screenings of two of his most personal films, the Spanish-language movies “The Devil’s Backbone,” a 2001 gothic horror movie set during the Spanish Civil War, and “Pan’s Labyrinth,” his Academy Award-winning dark fantasy set during Francoist Spain. But the appearance also provided the writer-director with a chance to tout his latest, “Pacific Rim,” a $180-million love letter to the kaiju movies he loved growing up. Showing the latest trailer for the film, which debuted online Thursday, spurred him to discuss his love for Japanese pop culture. He talked about reading manga series like “Astro Boy,” watching films by Toho, the Japanese production company behind Godzilla, and fancifully sketching giant robots. (To […]
May 16, 2013 | 10:57 a.m.
Spectacle, you say? The new trailer for Guillermo del Toro’s “Pacific Rim” delivers it on a massive scale, with out-of-this world creatures and towering robots duking it out on land and in the ocean, all while bathed in stunningly beautiful blue and gold light. Due in theaters July 12, the film, which Del Toro co-wrote with Travis Beacham, takes place in a near future, after a race of giant alien monsters has invaded our world via an inter-dimensional portal, prompting mankind to build equally enormous robots called Jaegers to defeat them. The hulking mechanized weapons are manned by an elite team of pilots, including Charlie Hunnam’s Raleigh Becket and Rinko Kikuchi’s Mako Mori, who represent humanity’s best line of defense against the beastly threat. The new clip explains “Pacific Rim’s” monster premise in a little more detail, but it’s the […]
May 15, 2013 | 7:35 p.m.
The highly anticipated sequel to J.J. Abrams’ 2009 reboot “Star Trek” opens in theaters tonight, but Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana, Leonard Nimoy and more “Star Trek Into Darkness” stars walked the silver carpet Tuesday evening for the film’s Hollywood premiere. The film follows Capt. James T. Kirk (Pine) and his Enterprise crew as they embark on a revenge-fueled manhunt to capture the man behind a terrorist attack on Starfleet. The search takes them to a war-zone world, putting the ship and the lives within it in danger and causing Kirk to question his abilities as captain. “I think a lot of maturing happens in this film for Kirk, for a man who thinks he knows everything and leads with his gut and leads with his heart, and is all kind of passion and heart,” Pine said during the film’s presentation […]
May 15, 2013 | 4:43 p.m.
Coulson lives! After nearly a year of rumors and anticipation among Marvel fans, ABC officially ordered a first season of the new television series “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” last week, sending Marvel fans all aflutter. “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” is set in the same world as last summer’s blockbuster smash “The Avengers,” which united Marvel’s muscled superheroes Iron Man, Captain American, Thor, the Hulk and others, and featured the international law enforcement and espionage organization. Clark Gregg, who played S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Phil Coulson in “The Avengers” and previous Marvel films, is reprising the role for the TV series, donning his suit and sunglasses once more to lead a team of crime-fighting agents: Grant Ward (Brett Dalton), highly trained in combat and espionage; Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen), expert pilot and martial artist; Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker), brilliant engineer; Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge), […]
May 15, 2013 | 7:16 a.m.
Video gamers will soon have the opportunity to create their own superheroes for the DC Comics universe. Or turn Batman into a zombie. Or suggest Superman wear a pink cape and ride a unicorn. But don’t try to give Batman a gun. Some things will never change. This fall 5th Cell and Warner Bros. Interactive will release “Scribblenauts Unmasked: A DC Comics Adventure” for the Wii U, 3DS and PC. The latest in the Scribblenauts franchise looks to be an expansive, puzzle-based adventure that makes use of the heroes, villains and locations made famous by the worlds featured in the 75-plus years of DC Comics. And some of the not so famous, too. “For the first time in any game we have all the DC Comics characters,” said Caleb Arseneaux, a 5th Cell producer. “The entire roster — characters who appeared in […]