Rebecca Keegan

July 18, 2013 | 11:40 p.m.

Comic-Con offers first look at Terry Gilliam film ‘The Zero Theorem’

'The Zero Theorem' is the new film from director Terry Gilliam (left), and stars Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz and Tilda Swinton, among other actors. (Max Nash / Matt Sayles / Invision/ Associated Press)
Comic-Con audiences got the first look at the opening 10 minutes of “The Zero Theorem,” director Terry Gilliam’s mystery-shrouded science fiction film starring Christoph Waltz, Matt Damon and Tilda Swinton, in Hall H Thursday. In a panel moderated by Hero Complex’s own Gina McIntyre, Gilliam’s daughter and producer, Amy Gilliam, and producers Dean Zanuck and Zev Foreman shed a bit of light on the enigmatic movie, the director’s first feature since 2009′s “The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus.” Set in a steampunky future world with candy-colored graffiti, talking billboards, whizzing little cars and a cold-hearted bureaucracy called ManCom running the show, “The Zero Theorem” lends itself to comparisons with Gilliam’s seminal dark comedic fantasy, “Brazil.” FULL COVERAGE: San Diego Comic-Con 2013 Waltz, who appears naked, bald and hunched over a desk in the opening shots of the film, plays Qohen, an eccentric […]
July 18, 2013 | 4:48 p.m.

Police rush to save woman from fall at Comic-Con

This post has been updated. See below for details. A woman hung from the 14th-floor balcony of a condominium building called the Mark in downtown San Diego on Thursday afternoon in an apparent suicide attempt that onlookers first thought was a stunt to promote a movie during Comic-Con. San Diego police took the woman into custody after she was removed from the balcony in a harness by workers setting up a zip line at the “Kick-Ass 2″ party across the street who were admitted to building by a representative of the homeowner’s association, according to the woman’s downstairs neighbor, Michael Mora. Police declined to release her name. Some of the crowds beneath the building on 8th Avenue, in the city’s busy Gaslamp District, initially thought they might be watching a bit of a guerrilla marketing campaign for a movie. The condo […]
May 10, 2013 | 5:56 p.m.

‘Iron Man 3’: How VFX made ‘barrel of monkeys’ scene soar [videos]

'Iron Man 3'
So it turns out that rescuing a bunch of people sucked out of a hole in Air Force One at 30,000 feet is actually harder than Robert Downey Jr. makes it look in “Iron Man 3.”  Who knew? The audacious action sequence that occurs midway through director Shane Black’s superhero sequel, known by those on the film crew as the “barrel of monkeys” scene, required a mix of real-world guts and digital ingenuity to pull off. The guts were supplied by the Red Bull skydiving team, who stand in for the crew of the president’s plane in the scene — the effects that placed them believably within the story came from Digital Domain, the VFX shop that created about 250 of the shots in the movie, including 35 different Iron Man suits, a wholly digital Air Force One and a […]
May 09, 2013 | 8:00 a.m.

Exclusive: Disney Animation announces first Marvel movie, ‘Big Hero 6′

This concept art for “Big Hero 6” showcases the Bridge to San Fransokyo. Credit: Disney.
Walt Disney Animation Studios is announcing its first movie inspired by a Marvel comic Thursday, an adaptation of a lesser known crime fighter series called “Big Hero 6.” Directed by Don Hall (“Winnie the Pooh”) and due in 2014, the CG-animated movie will center on a robotics prodigy named Hiro Hamada and his robot companion BayMax, who join a team of superheroes in a high-tech city called San Fransokyo. (For a closer look at the city of San Fransokyo, see the video above). Even die-hard comic book fans may have trouble recalling the Marvel series, which was created by Steven T. Seagle and Duncan Rouleau in 1998 and is something of a whimsical love letter to Japanese culture. Characters in the original comic include a samurai, an agent who invented a nanotechnology-based Power Purse and a monster born from a […]
May 08, 2013 | 2:24 p.m.

Ray Harryhausen: Pixar’s Pete Docter on the monster king

Characters in Pixar's "Monster Inc." dine at Harryhausens. Credit: Pixar
In the 2001 Pixar movie “Monsters, Inc.,” Mike, the one-eyed green orb voiced by Billy Crystal, takes his scaly, snake-haired girlfriend Celia out for sushi at a local haunt called Harryhausen’s. The name of the restaurant was a nod to a man who influenced “Monsters, Inc.” director Pete Docter — special effects pioneer Ray Harryhausen, who died Tuesday in London at age 92. Before the kind of computer animation pioneered at Pixar became Hollywood’s standard tool for crafting its fantasies, Harryhausen used the methodical, frame-by-frame technique of stop-motion animation to place dinosaurs in New York City in 1953′s “The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms,” to pit Jason against an army of skeleton warriors in “Jason and the Argonauts” (1963), and to release the kraken in the 1981 version of “Clash of the Titans.” It was an approach that captured the imaginations […]
May 07, 2013 | 11:26 a.m.

‘Star Trek Into Darkness’ beams into theaters one day early, May 16

The wait to see J.J. Abrams’ “Star Trek Into Darkness” just got a little shorter. Paramount announced Tuesday that it will release the film May 16, one day earlier than its original opening date of May 17. Directed by Abrams and written by Alex Kurtzman, Damon Lindelof and Roberto Orci, “Into Darkness”  sees the return of Capt. Kirk (Chris Pine), Mr. Spock (Zachary Quinto) and the rest of the USS Enterprise crew as they face a new villain, John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch). As with so much in the fictional worlds Abrams creates (“Lost,” “Super 8”), many details around the movie have been cloaked in mystery, including the true identity of Cumberbatch’s character. But in a recent interview with The Times, Pine and Quinto shared insight into John Harrison — and the movie’s present-day parallels. “This film is about earthbound terror,” […]
May 04, 2013 | 6:00 a.m.

‘Star Wars’: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto on J.J. Abrams’ ‘Trek’ future

When Disney announced in January that J.J. Abrams would direct “Star Wars: Episode VII,” the news had major implications for the geek faithful. While some rejoiced at the prospect of Hollywood’s A-list nerd-auteur shepherding the next entry in the beloved sci-fi franchise, many fans of that other beloved sci-fi franchise, “Star Trek,” wondered what Abrams’ new gig would mean for them. After all, Abrams had successfully revived “Star Trek” with his 2009 Paramount film, casting Chris Pine as a young James T. Kirk and Zachary Quinto as Spock, and crafting a movie that managed to win over both “Trek” die-hards and newcomers to the series. He had already shot “Star Trek Into Darkness,” which opens May 17, and was on track to make a third movie. It turns out it wasn’t just fans wondering what Abrams taking on “Star Wars” […]
April 26, 2013 | 6:00 a.m.

‘Star Trek Into Darkness’: Pine, Quinto on film’s real-world parallels

Actors Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto play  Kirk and Spock in the new movie "Star Trek Into Darkness." (Ricardo DeAratanha/Los Angeles Times)
“Star Trek” has always been about more than a spaceship crew hurtling through the cosmos — over the decades, the sci-fi series in all its forms has tackled earthly issues such as race, gender and the Vietnam War. When it comes to shining a spotlight on contemporary conflicts, the film and television franchise’s newest entry, the movie “Star Trek Into Darkness,” is no exception. Directed by J.J. Abrams and written by Alex Kurtzman, Damon Lindelof and Roberto Orci, “Into Darkness,” which opens May 17, sees the return of Capt. Kirk (Chris Pine), Mr. Spock (Zachary Quinto) and the rest of the USS Enterprise crew, as they face a new villain, John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch). As with so much in the fictional worlds Abrams creates (“Lost,” “Super 8”), many details around the movie have been cloaked in mystery, including the true […]
April 16, 2013 | 10:13 a.m.

‘Oblivion’: Tom Cruise talks return to big-screen spectacle sci-fi

Tom Cruise was on hand Monday night in New York for an early screening of his new Universal film “Oblivion,” hosted by Hero Complex, and afterward, in a special interactive Q&A simulcast to nine IMAX theaters across the country, the star talked at length about his interest in making the film, citing in particular filmmaker Joseph Kosinksi, calling the writer-director seated beside him “a world creator” and a “true visionary.” Based on a 2010 graphic novel Kosinski penned with comic book writer Arvid Nelson, “Oblivion,” which opens Friday, takes place on a future Earth left decimated by an alien invasion. Former Marine Jack Harper (Cruise) is one of a few people left on the planet to mop up after the war. The movie, written by Karl Gajdusek and Michael deBruyn, also stars Morgan Freeman as a 102-year-old insurgency leader, Melissa […]
April 15, 2013 | 7:00 a.m.

Video: ‘Oblivion’ Q&A with Tom Cruise and Joseph Kosinski

Get those questions ready — tonight the Hero Complex screening series will offer fans an early look at the new film “Oblivion” followed by a unique opportunity to pose queries directly to star Tom Cruise and director Joseph Kosinski (“Tron: Legacy”). Following screenings of “Oblivion” in 10 cities across the country, Cruise and Kosinski will join Hero Complex contributor Rebecca Keegan at 7 p.m. Pacific time on Monday at New York City’s AMC Loews 34th Street to discuss the movie and respond to fan questions. The film opens in theaters Friday. The post-screening interview will be simulcast via satellite to IMAX theaters in Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Diego and Virginia Beach, Va. Audiences in all 10 cities as well as online viewers can submit potential questions real time via Twitter by tweeting queries for Cruise […]
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