Feb. 18, 2011 | 10:04 a.m.
During her early days as a school teacher in Southern California, Kathryn Beaumont had some conversations that got curiouser and curiouser. That’s the sort of thing that happens when you’re a former child actor who has given voice to two of Walt Disney’s most famous young heroines. Beaumont, now 72 and living in Burbank, recently recalled one of the encounters: “The children were lined up outside my door for coming in,” Beaumont said. Also outside was a student’s mother, who said, “I don’t want to take too much of your time, but I took my daughter to ‘Alice in Wonderland.’ ” The daughter insisted that Alice was now her teacher, and she and the mother had argued about it. “So I had to tell her,” Beaumont said. “She was really in shock.” Beaumont told that bewildered parent that she had been […]
Feb. 15, 2011 | 11:20 a.m.
Ben Fritz covers the business of show business for the Los Angeles Times; here’s his latest — a report on a consultant team that helps studios keep their flagship brands on a consistent course… With their mania for film franchises, leading studios are behaving more like packaged goods marketers than the showmen of yore in pumping out movies, and appear more interested in taking direction from fanboys, brand managers and multimedia consultants. So the time appears ripe for consultants such as Jeff Gomez and Mark Pensavalle, co-founders of Starlight Runner Entertainment. Their job: To make sure that stories and characters remain consistent as a movie is reincarnated as, say, a TV series, a video game, a theme park attraction or an online virtual world. Their specialty is called transmedia, a term with roots in academia that has become the latest buzzword […]
Feb. 02, 2011 | 4:12 p.m.
Jack Sparrow sets sail on another adventure on May 20 and on Sunday during the Super Bowl you can watch a new commercial for the movie — “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” — but if you’re eager to judge the cut of their jib, we have a 10-second preview. — Geoff Boucher RECENT AND RELATED “Pirates” director Rob Marshall on the joys of Johnny “Pirates” king Jerry Bruckheimer gets royal treatment Depp: “There’s a crack in my enthusiasm” for “Pirates 4” Is the “Pirates” franchise sailing into rough waters? VOTE: Who should star with Depp in “Lone Ranger”? Keith Richards talks (like a pirate) about pal Depp Author Tim Powers finds himself aboard “Pirates” ship Gore Verbinksi and Depp will reunite for “Lone Ranger” Ahoy matey: Johnny Depp stuns D23 fans
Jan. 21, 2011 | 7:40 a.m.
EXCLUSIVE PHOTO Here’s an exclusive new photo of Ian McShane as the fearsome Blackbeard in “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” the fourth voyage of the Disney mega-franchise that stars Johnny Depp as the swashbuckler Jack Sparrow. The movie and its tale of the elusive Fountain of Youth and carnivorous mermaids hits theaters May 20, so it seemed a bit spooky — or suspect — that there’s all of this scuttlebutt going around the Internet right now about the real Blackbeard’s sword being recovered off the coast of Beaufort, N.C. Was this just Disney trying to gin up some headlines or an archeological moment of mad timing? I contacted the team who has been studying the infamous English pirate’s sunken flagship, the Queen Anne’s Revenge, and they say that the recently secured artifact could be a weapon that old Edward Teach gripped in his hand, but it just as well might have […]
Jan. 05, 2011 | 8:51 a.m.
“Tron: Legacy” has pulled in $244 million in global box office since its Dec. 17 release, and as far as visual effects and design go, it has been the most discussed and debated film of 2010. The visions of the movie were achieved by a massive team, but right at the top of that glowing pyramid was Joseph Kosinski, who made his feature-film debut with the movie. We talked to the filmmaker about the movie’s heritage, modern digital life and those CG faces that left some moviegoers wandering the uncanny valley. GB: The original film was certainly a landmark moment on several levels, but — for someone new coming to it now in 2011 — it may be easier to respect than to actually enjoy. Or do you think that’s unfair to say? JK: Steven Lisberger [“Tron” director] told me, “You’ve […]
Dec. 26, 2010 | 7:59 a.m.
WELCOME TO THE MACHINE: The new Disney film “Tron: Legacy” picks up the story of the 1982 movie “Tron,” which was neither a critical nor a commercial success but somehow still echoes in pop culture as an early signpost of the digital era’s glowing frontier. “Tron” is remembered more for its ideas and images (and its namesake video game) than for its story or characters, and that is a challenge for this new film, which stars Jeff Bridges, Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde. Here, a chat with Bridges and a look at one of the shutterbug’s on-the-set photos… Jeff Bridges has three roles in “Tron: Legacy,” and for two of them — a flashback-era Kevin Flynn and a computer-world fascist named CLU — his visage was digitally altered to make the 61-year-old Oscar winner look decades younger. The transformation team was led […]
Dec. 23, 2010 | 8:20 p.m.
For a story in this Sunday’s Calendar, our sister blog Pop & Hiss scored a rare — well, let’s be real– a just-this-side-of-impossible-to-land interview with Daft Punk to get the lowdown on how the Grammy-winning Parisian dance music duo went about creating the chart-topping soundtrack for the sci-fi epic “Tron: Legacy.” From the word go, almost everything about the process went counter-intuitively: band mates Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo didn’t want the job when it was first offered to them, they balked when Disney Studios asked them to collaborate with a bigger-name film score composer and then rejected the kind of music everyone expected them to record for “Tron” — rave-y, four-on-the-floor Big Beat electronica — in lieu of more symphonic compositions that forefront an 85-piece orchestra and back-burner electronic musical cues. “Especially in the beginning, [“Tron: Legacy” director] […]
Dec. 21, 2010 | 10:08 a.m.
WELCOME TO THE MACHINE: The new Disney film “Tron: Legacy” picks up the story of the 1982 movie “Tron,” which was neither a critical nor a commercial success but somehow still echoes in pop culture as an early signpost of the digital era’s glowing frontier. “Tron” is remembered more for its ideas and images (and its namesake video game) than for its story or characters, and that is a challenge presented to this new film, which stars Jeff Bridges, Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde. Here’s a look at Steven Lisberger and the heritage of “Legacy.” At Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, the power lunches are served in the Rotunda, the swanky, employees-only restaurant that has the Doric columns and frosty hush of a serious museum. On a recent afternoon, most of the eyes in the buttoned-down dining room were fixed on […]
Dec. 20, 2010 | 2:13 p.m.
WELCOME TO THE MACHINE: The new Disney film “Tron: Legacy” picks up the story of the 1982 movie “Tron,” which was neither a critical nor a commercial success but somehow still echoes in pop culture as an early signpost of the digital era’s glowing frontier. “Tron” is remembered more for its ideas and images (and its namesake video game) than for its story or characters, and that is a challenge presented to this new film, which stars Jeff Bridges, Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde. The standard line about why the original “Tron” film failed at the box office back in 1982 is that it was a cinematic mess, a glorified video game that director Steven Lisberger failed to transform into a coherent movie. I always felt there was more to it than that, which is why, three years after it […]
Dec. 18, 2010 | 4:20 p.m.
In lieu of the French duo Daft Punk playing live during “Tron: Legacy” with a 100-piece orchestra, Hollywood’s legendary El Capitan Theatre will give us the next best thing: a laser light show before each screening. OK, so it’s not vocoders or spacesuits from the band that scored the Jeff Bridges vehicle, but we have a feeling that lasers shooting around the theater will delight even the most steely of robot hearts. To further entice your electronic soul: One person will win a pair of tickets to Disney California Adventure Park before every showing. Daily screenings now underway: 10 a.m., 1:15 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 7:45 p.m. and 10:45 p.m. El Capitan Theatre, 6838 Hollywood Blvd. The engagement runs through Jan. 20. $16-$18. elcapitan.go.com. RECENT AND RELATED “Tron” glow-in-the-dark posters are retro visions “Tron: Legacy,” the Hollywood premiere REVIEW: “Tron: Legacy” glows […]