July 08, 2014 | 12:19 p.m.

Comic-Con: Peter Jackson’s ‘Hobbit,’ George Miller’s ‘Mad Max,’ more

Peter Jackson is leaving Middle-earth long enough to stop by Comic-Con International in San Diego. The Oscar-winning filmmaker will appear in the pop-culture expo’s grandest arena, Hall H, to tout the Dec. 17 release of the final chapter of his second J.R.R. Tolkien trilogy, “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” Warner Bros. announced Tuesday. As you might have judged from the more-dramatic-than-“There and Back Again” title, it promises to be the most action-packed of the “Hobbit” films, with the Benedict Cumberbatch-voiced dragon Smaug on the loose, and Martin Freeman’s Bilbo Baggins and Ian McKellen’s Gandalf caught up in a multi-way struggle for the treasure of Erebor. That presentation, scheduled for July 26 at 10 a.m., also includes more from the studio’s upcoming slate. Postapocalyptic visionary director George Miller will show the crowd an early look at “Mad Max: […]
July 06, 2014 | 5:23 p.m.

‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ announces two cast members, two-week hiatus

“Star Wars: Episode VII” has added two newcomers to its cast, and will take a two-week hiatus in August because of Harrison Ford’s recovery from a leg injury, the production announced Sunday. Lucasfilm and Disney discovered American actress Crystal Clarke and British actor Pip Andersen via a casting call last year that drew a total of more than 60,000 applicants from in-person auditions and online submissions. In addition to J.J. Abrams’ new “Star Wars” film, Clarke will be seen in next year’s fantasy “The Moon and the Sun,” starring Pierce Brosnan as an immortality-seeking King Louis XIV. Possibly part of Andersen’s appeal: No stunt double necessary. He’s a parkour specialist. “The ‘Star Wars’ universe has always been about discovering and nurturing young talent, and in casting ‘Episode VII’ we wanted to remain absolutely faithful to this tradition,” producer and Lucasfilm […]
June 25, 2014 | 9:49 a.m.

‘Hunger Games: Mockingjay': President Snow warns Panem in teaser video

Panem presidential propaganda takes a chilling turn in a new teaser for “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1,” released Wednesday. “Ours is an elegant system, conceived to nourish and protect,” President Snow (Donald Sutherland) tells the impoverished people whose districts he rules from the wealthy Capitol. Of course, he’s talking about a system that includes having children fight to the death as entertainment, so it’s no wonder there’s rebellion afoot in the saga’s penultimate chapter, due in theaters Nov. 21, and that Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) is a key figure in the resistance. QUIZ: Test your ‘Catching Fire’ knowledge, Katniss fans But for anyone who’s thinking about opposing the Capitol, President Snow has a dire warning:  “If you resist the system, you starve yourself. If you fight against it, it is you who will bleed,” he intones as it’s […]
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