J. J. Abrams

April 29, 2014 | 10:50 a.m.

‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ cast revealed: Abrams confirms acting roster

The speculation is finally at an end — John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson and Max von Sydow will star in “Star Wars: Episode VII.” The actors join the stars of George Lucas’ original saga, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew and Kenny Baker, in director J.J. Abrams’ new film, due in theaters Dec. 18, 2015. In a statement released on StarWars.com, Abrams said, “It is both thrilling and surreal to watch the beloved original cast and these brilliant new performers come together to bring this world to life, once again. We start shooting in a couple of weeks, and everyone is doing their best to make the fans proud.” Abrams wrote the screenplay for the film with Lawrence Kasdan, and he will produce with Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy and […]
March 03, 2014 | 10:49 a.m.

‘Girls’ creator Lena Dunham to pen 4-part series for Archie Comics

Lena Dunham photographed during the "Girls" panel discussion at the HBO portion of the 2014 Winter Television Critics Association tour on Jan. 9, 2014 in Pasadena, Calif. (Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
“Girls” creator Lena Dunham is venturing into the world of comics. The outspoken writer-director-actress will pen a four-part Archie Comics story set for release in 2015 that chronicles what happens when a reality show begins filming in Riverdale. Dunham has said that she was an avid Archie Comics collector as a child, and it will be interesting to see how her singular sensibility translates onto the paneled page. In both her feature film directorial debut, 2010’s “Tiny Furniture,” and on the hit HBO comedy about four friends making their way in New York, Dunham has revealed a gift for detailing the oddities of relationships and the uncomfortable, awkward moments that attend maturing into adulthood. Dunham won a Golden Globe for her starring turn on the series as the self-centered struggling writer Hannah Horvath; “Girls” has been nominated for 10 Emmy […]
Dec. 23, 2013 | 5:20 p.m.

‘Doctor Who,’ ‘Hobbit,’ ‘Hunger Games,’ Batfleck: 2013 in review

The year was a gift for fans of genre entertainment.  Click through the images for a detailed look at some of the most memorable moments of 2013. (Photos, clockwise from top left, by BBC; Warner Bros.; Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times; Lionsgate)
2013 was a superb year for fans of genre entertainment. Major comic book heroes celebrated milestone anniversaries, as did “Doctor Who.” “The Walking Dead” and “Game of Thrones” continued to demonstrate that fantastic tales, both grim and transporting, can make for compelling, compulsory viewing. Dragons, female warriors and Tom Hiddleston stormed the multiplex in blockbuster fashion, while next-generation gaming consoles arrived, just in time for Christmas. There was plenty of big news about 2015 projects as well — namely, that J.J. Abrams will direct the first live-action “Star Wars” film since 2005, and that Ben Affleck will take over the role of Batman from Gotham City’s previous Caped Crusader, Christian Bale. Following are the Hero Complex picks for some of the most memorable moments in film, TV, comic books and games, in no particular order. Feel free to share your […]
Dec. 06, 2013 | 6:01 p.m.

‘Star Trek 3′ recruits screenwriters Payne, McKay to join Orci

Zachary Quinto and Chris Pine in "Star Trek Into Darkness." (Zade Rosenthal/Paramount)
Screenwriters J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay have been hired to join Roberto Orci in penning the next installment in the “Star Trek” film franchise. The as-yet-untitled sequel has no release date, and no director set, though rumors have suggested the job could go to Joe Cornish (“Attack the Block”). By this point, Orci is a “Trek” veteran, having written the scripts (with Alex Kurtzman and then Kurtzman and Damon Lindelof) for the previous two movies in Paramount’s rebooted series that were directed by J.J. Abrams, 2009’s “Star Trek” and this past summer’s “Star Trek Into Darkness.” The recent movie prospered at the box office, earning more than $444 million worldwide after opening to mostly positive reviews in May, though many fans groused about the veil of secrecy that surrounded the villain who was played by Benedict Cumberbatch, a character first […]
Dec. 03, 2013 | 12:56 p.m.

Star Wars Instagram: Darth Vader takes a selfie in first post

Darth Vader on Instagram (featured image)
Star Wars is officially on Instagram, and the first post from the new account features Darth Vader taking a self-portrait. The Sith Lord poses in front of a fallen Stormtrooper and holds up a front-facing cellphone camera. “Another day at the office,” the caption reads. “#StarWars #DarthVader #selfies #gpom.” (For those unfamiliar with the lingo, “#gpom” stands for “gratuitous picture of myself.”) The picture, posted Monday, has already garnered more than 30,000 “likes.” Subsequent postings from the Star Wars account include a picture of Vader facing off against Luke Skywalker (“#latergram”) and a photo of a concept model for a Star Destroyer in “A New Hope,” from the Lucasfilm archives. PHOTOS: Hero Complex Geek Gift Guide 2013 The account was likely started in preparation for the upcoming “Star Wars” sequels, the first of which is slated for theatrical release on […]
Nov. 30, 2013 | 8:00 a.m.

‘Almost Human': J.H. Wyman talks sci-fi cop show’s brighter futurism

John Kennex (Karl Urban) and Dorian (Michael Ealy) are dispatched to investigate a murder and high-profile missing persons case in the second episode of "Almost Human," titled "Skin." (Liane Hentscher/Fox)
When it comes to sci-fi, bleak and brutal are all the rage, but with his new Fox series “Almost Human,” J.H. Wyman is attempting to shine a little light onto all the darkness. “When you think about shows or movies that are placed in the future, the tendency is it rains all the time and the atmosphere is messed up,” Wyman said. “In the future, you’re telling me that no one has a 7-year-old daughter that they have a birthday party for and maybe buy her a present? Nobody’s happy? I don’t believe that.” With its gleaming silver skyscrapers and high-tech gadgetry, “Almost Human” is more late-model “Star Trek” than fashionably dystopian nightmare, which is perhaps not surprising given both J.J. Abrams’ executive producer role and the presence of star Karl Urban. Fresh off two stints as Leonard “Bones” McCoy […]
Nov. 07, 2013 | 1:25 p.m.

‘Star Wars: Episode VII': J.J. Abrams’ film to open December 18, 2015

It’s official — “Star Wars: Episode VII” has a release date: J.J. Abrams’ new film will open December, 18, 2015. The news appeared in an announcement Thursday on StarWars.com. “We’re very excited to share the official 2015 release date for ‘Star Wars: Episode VII,’ where it will not only anchor the popular holiday filmgoing season but also ensure our extraordinary filmmaking team has the time needed to deliver a sensational picture,” said Alan Horn, chairman of The Walt Disney Studios, in the announcement. PHOTOS: ‘Star Wars’ at the box office Late last month, word came that director Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan were taking over screenwriting duties on the newest “Star Wars” film from Oscar winner Michael Arndt. Arndt (“Little Miss Sunshine,” “Toy Story 3″) had been announced as the original screenwriter for “Episode VII” last November, shortly after word surfaced that […]
Oct. 24, 2013 | 12:35 p.m.

‘Star Wars: Episode VII': J.J. Abrams, Lawrence Kasdan to pen script

J.J. Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan are taking over screenwriting duties on the newest “Star Wars” film from Oscar winner Michael Arndt, according to a statement issued today. Abrams was tapped to direct “Star Wars: Episode VII” back in January; Kasdan, of course, has a long history with Lucasfilm, as a screenwriter on “Star Wars: Episode V — The Empire Strikes Back,” “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and “Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi.” “I am very excited about the story we have in place and thrilled to have Larry and J.J. working on the script,” Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy said in a statement posted on StarWars.com. “There are very few people who fundamentally understand the way a ‘Star Wars’ story works like Larry, and it is nothing short of incredible to have him even more deeply involved […]
Sept. 27, 2013 | 11:56 a.m.

‘Star Wars': Animated open letter to J.J. Abrams makes four demands

Star Wars, J. J. Abrams (featured image)
A new animated video calls on J.J. Abrams, director of the upcoming and highly controversial sequel “Star Wars: Episode VII,” to handle the beloved franchise with care. Created by Prescott Harvey with the creative agency Sincerely, Truman, the animated open letter offers the director four rules “to make ‘Star Wars’ great again”: 1. The setting is the frontier; 2. The future is old; 3. The Force is mysterious; and 4. Star Wars isn’t cute. “I’ve spent most of my recent years wondering why the original ‘Star Wars’ trilogy was so awesome, and the new movies were so terrible,” Harvey told sci-fi site io9, which debuted the video. “I took an empirical approach, determining what elements were in the original movies that differed from the prequels. My first major epiphany was that, in the originals, the characters are always outside somewhere […]
Aug. 19, 2013 | 11:33 a.m.

J.J. Abrams releases mysterious new ‘Stranger’ teaser

J.J. Abrams' "Stranger" (featured image)
J.J. Abrams’ production company Bad Robot has released a mysterious new teaser for a project labeled “Stranger.” It’s a beautifully shot, subtle piece of black-and-white filmmaking that concludes with a haunting image of a man with his lips sewn shut. We’re guessing this has nothing to do with Abrams’ next planned feature, the much-anticipated “Star Wars: Episode VII,” due to go into production next year. Abrams, of course, values secrecy as a key means to surprising audiences in both his film and television projects, and it’s hard to draw too many conclusions from the teaser. The director, famously, kept his cards close to the vest concerning the big baddie in his summer blockbuster, “Star Trek Into Darkness.” For months, Benedict Cumberbatch’s villain was known only by the name John Harrison, and not that other, far more well-known moniker. Anyone who […]
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