This week's Movie News


Brad Pitt and Tommy Lee Jones, who haven’t worked together before are to play father and son in James Gray’s sci fi epic Ad Astra. Pitt has been cast as a slightly autistic space engineer whose father disappeared 20 years before while on a one way mission to Neptune to find signs of alien life, Pitt’s character now sets out on the same course to find him and ascertain why his mission failed. The tone is said to be akin to Conrad’s Heart Of Darkness but set in deep space.

Matt Reeves, director of The War For The Planet Of The Apes, also discusses its similarity to Heart of Darkness or Apocalypse Now in an interview which we will carry on The Picture Show on Saturday July 8th. Ad Astra will begin shooting in September.

Bradley Cooper filmed scenes for his A Star Is Born remake at the Glastonbury music festival last weekend. He strapped on a guitar and performed a set prior to outlaw country hero Kris Kristofferson and his band taking the stage (Kristofferson had co-starred with Barbara Streisand in the 1976 version of A Star is Born). Johnny Depp, who moonlights as a guitarist with the Hollywood Vampires alongside Alice Cooper and Joe Perry, later joined Kristofferson on stage.

Cooper is directing and starring in the fourth film version of A Star is Born with Lady Gaga.
Rebounding from the failure of Baywatch, Dwayne Johnson has washed up in China where he leads the cast of Skyscraper as a former FBI hostage team leader who is now assessing security for skyscrapers. On assignment in China he finds the tallest and allegedly the safest building in the world, on fire and he is being framed for it. A man on the run, he must find those responsible, clear his name and rescue his family which is trapped inside the building.
Neve Campbell, from the Scream films and latterly in House Of Cards, co-stars, presumably, as a member of his family. Skyscraper is directed by Rawson Marshall Thurber who did the comedy Central Intelligence with “The Rock”.

Plans are in train for a film based on the life of Colonel Tom Parker, Elvis Presley’s famous manager-Director Joe Berlinger is developing the picture based on a book called The Colonel by Alanna Nash. Parker arrived in America as an undocumented 20 year old Dutch immigrant. Taking great pains to hide his past, he became Elvis’ manager in 1956 just as he was about to break out with the single Heartbreak Hotel. And he remained in the job until the singer’s death in 1977.
Nash has co-written the screenplay for The Colonel with Berlinger. Elvis made about 35 movies in his career but Parker steered him away from serious material. Robert Mitchum, his favourite actor, offered him the role of his young brother in Thunder Road and Barbra Streisand flew to Las Vegas to offer him a part in A Star Is Born.
Warner Bros. is moving ahead with a sequel to last year’s autistic assassin story The Accountant. Director Gavin O’Connor and star Ben Affleck are in talks to return while actor Jon Bernthal may also be back in some capacity. Affleck played the titular math savant who worked as a forensic accountant for various criminal organisation who are under the glare of the law. 
The movie which cost $44m ended up grossing $155m and it’s also been a good seller on video.