June 24, 2010 | 10:43 p.m.
It’s the franchise that has fans everywhere thirsty for any bloody detail. The latest installment, “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse,” in theaters Wednesday, sees Seattle plagued by an army of newborn vampires controlled by the vengeful Victoria, who is out to destroy Bella Swan, whom she holds responsible for her lover’s death. To safeguard Bella from the oncoming threat, her boyfriend, Edward Cullen, and his family must band together and join forces with their shape-shifting foes, the wolf pack, who are sworn to defend humans from all blood suckers. But it’s not all fang baring and claw clenching; there’s also an explosive love triangle this time around. And lots — lots — of shirtless roaming by the muscled members of the wolf pack. To gear up for the third feature to be adapted from the wildly popular Stephenie Meyer “Twilight” books, […]
June 03, 2010 | 6:36 p.m.
FIVE QUESTIONS: SHANNEN DOHERTY A few weeks ago, we brought you the exclusive first look at “Mari-Kari,” the new animated series from FEARnet, and the series makes its cyberspace premiere Thursday.The anime-inspired webisodes feature Shannen Doherty as the voice of identical twin sisters Mari and Kari; both are adorable and wide-eyed grade-school students, but one of them also happens to be a ruthless ghost who slices and dices anyone who crosses her living sister. Hero Complex contributor Yvonne Villarreal caught up with Doherty for a round of five questions — but the actress asked for your help answering one of them. YV: You’re no stranger to television: If people don’t know you as Brenda Walsh on “Beverly Hills, 90210,” they know you as Prue Halliwell on “Charmed”… or even as the chick who frightened people on SyFy’s “Scare Tactics.” What prompted you to take on […]
May 18, 2010 | 4:43 p.m.
Our “Twilight” specialist Yvonne Villarreal caught up with the “Twilight” wolf-pack actors who, no surprise, howl in protest when someone suggests that Team Edward is best. Team Edward or Team Jacob? It’s no contest, at least not according to the actors who portray the lupine brethren of Jacob, the werewolf played by beefy heartthrob Taylor Lautner in “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse,” which hits theaters June 30. Chaske Spencer, the 35-year-old actor who plays wolf-pack elder Sam Uley, says brooding vampires — like Robert Pattinson’s forever-conflicted Edward Cullen – pale in comparison to a strapping, loyal forest boy like Jacob. “Have you seen him?” Spencer asked with a chuckle. “He’s got that sex appeal going. He’s got the body. He’s the boy next door. But he can also rip your head off.” Spencer added: “He’s a protector. What more could a girl ask for?” In the third installment of “The Twilight Saga,” the […]
May 12, 2010 | 1:41 p.m.
FIVE QUESTIONS: MICHAEL STEPHENSON Most people would shy away from being associated with a bad movie. Not Michael Stephenson. The former child actor embraces it. In “Best Worst Movie,” Stephenson makes his directorial debut and delves into the cult following for the deliriously bad horror film “Troll 2” — in which he played annoying lead Joshua Waits. The well-reviewed documentary also catches up with the cast of the 1990 film, with Stephenson’s costar George Hardy at the forefront. Stephenson and Hardy have traveled the world screening the documentary at various film festivals, and now their quirky retrospective returns to Los Angeles with a showing May 21 at the Landmark Nuart. The film will play at the theater for at least a week. Hero Complex contributor Yvonne Villarreal caught up with Stephenson for a round of five questions. YV: There are so many films out there claiming […]
May 06, 2010 | 12:40 p.m.
Yvonne Villarreal goes in-depth on “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse” in this piece, which is a longer version of her Sunday Calendar story. The family that slays together, stays together. At least that’s the case for the Cullen brood. In “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse,” which hits theaters June 30, Seattle is ravaged by a series of killings caused by an army of newborn vampires controlled by revenge-seeking bloodsucker Victoria. To combat the threat against Bella (Kristen Stewart) in this third installment of the franchise, the Cullens must band together and join forces with their sworn enemies, the wolf pack. “The whole family is in a vulnerable position because of the love we have for Bella,” said Elizabeth Reaser, who plays matriarch Esme Cullen. “If she’s not OK, we’re not OK.” In the past, we’ve seen the clan hit baseballs so […]
March 23, 2010 | 9:58 p.m.
THREE-PAGE PREVIEW BELOW When it was announced in October that Scott Snyder’s new monthly comic book series, “American Vampire” from Vertigo, would feature the contribution of suspense novelist Stephen King, it wasn’t long before the phone started ringing. “We got all these crazy phone calls from movie producers wanting to know when they could see it, who they should cast in it. … It was nuts,” Snyder said. “It only existed as a script then, and DC and Vertigo weren’t showing it. It hasn’t physically existed until now. … Hopefully, people will still be interested.” The comic book’s first story arc, which hit shelves last week, centers on two primary characters in two different eras — aspiring actress Pearl in the 1920s and violent cowboy-turned-vampire Skinner Sweet in the 1880s. So who does Snyder, best known for his short stories, […]
March 04, 2010 | 12:31 a.m.
“ALICE IN WONDERLAND” COUNTDOWN: 3 DAYS Are you ready for a trip down the rabbit hole? Tim Burton, Johnny Depp and Disney are adding a strange new chapter to the Lewis Carroll classic with their “Alice in Wonderland,” a film that presents a young woman who finds herself in the world of the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire Cat and the Red Queen. She is welcomed as a returning visitor — but is she, in fact, the same Alice who roamed the trippy realm as a child? Time will tell. Here at the Hero Complex, we’ve been counting down to the film’s release with a month of daily coverage. Michael Sheen has proved himself especially adept at portraying historically prominent figures — Emperor Nero, British Prime Minister Tony Blair and David Frost, for instance — but has plenty of experience in films of the fantastic after his […]
Feb. 21, 2010 | 12:48 a.m.
“ALICE IN WONDERLAND” COUNTDOWN: 13 DAYS Are you ready for a trip down the rabbit hole? Tim Burton, Johnny Depp and Disney are adding a strange new chapter to the Lewis Carroll classic with their “Alice in Wonderland,” a film that presents a young woman who finds herself in the world of the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire Cat and the Red Queen. She is welcomed as a returning visitor — but is she, in fact, the same Alice who roamed the trippy realm as a child? Time will tell. Here at the Hero Complex, we’re counting down to the film’s March 5 release with daily coverage. The Mad Hatter came out to play. . . in Hollywood. The Hollywood & Highland complex transformed into Wonderland for a few hours Friday night as hundreds of fans gathered in the plaza’s courtyard (and alongside the railings […]
Feb. 19, 2010 | 2:20 a.m.
”ALICE IN WONDERLAND” COUNTDOWN: 15 DAYS Are you ready for a trip down the rabbit hole? Tim Burton, Johnny Depp and Disney are adding a strange new chapter to the Lewis Carroll classic with their “Alice in Wonderland,” a film that presents a young woman who finds herself in the world of the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire Cat and the Red Queen and greeted as a returning visitor. We’re counting down to the film’s March 5 release with daily coverage. Today, a look at the film’s IMAX release as Yvonne Villarreal chats with Greg Foster, chairman and president of IMAX Filmed Entertainment, about the royal-sized treatment of Burton’s fantasy film. YV: This modern 3D trend, to some people, seems like just a gimmick that is oversaturating the industry. In the case of “Alice in Wonderland,” how does the technology enhance the experience? GF: It takes […]
Jan. 15, 2010 | 2:08 a.m.
AWARDS SEASON Hero Complex robot expert Yvonne Villarreal gives a listen to “Transformers” director Michael Bay and his sound team as they wave the flag for trophy time in Hollywood. Imagine Demolisher and Optimus Prime wreaking havoc on the Earth as they battle — but doing it in complete silence. Not very thrilling, huh? The hunky pieces of metal in the “Transformers” films lose a lot of their thunderous power without all that sound. It’s the clinks and whooshes and BOOMS caused by the massive appliances that complete the larger-than-life experience of the films. Director Michael Bay recently joined sound re-recording mixers Greg P. Russell and Gary Summers, and supervising sound editors Ethan Van Der Ryn and Erik Aadahl to discuss the sound art (and science) of “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” at the Cary Grant Theatre on the Sony Pictures lot. “I have like 2,000 […]