All Guillermo del Toro Movies Ranked by Tomatometer
One easy way to get that Best Picture win at the Oscars? Spend your burgeoning directing career on strange and grotesque genre pictures, then hook up with a major studio to work on Lord of the Rings, with hundreds of millions of dollars in budget. Obviously! It worked for Peter Jackson, whose Dead Alive and Meet the Feebles movies did little to suggest he would one day get the gold trophy for The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King.
And it worked for Guillermo del Toro, whose success with cult cinema fanatics led him to toil for years on The Hobbit movies. Del Toro didn’t win anything for those movies — hell, he didn’t even end up directing them. But he did get the top prize for The Shape of Water, an unlikely win for the unlikeliest of love stories, which currently puts a lovely bow on a career characterized by dark fantasy, big sci-fi, and creature features, of visions where the lines between dream and nightmare blur.
Del Toro got his start in his native Mexico in the early ’90s with the mythological Cronos, featuring Ron Perlman in the first of several collaborations. As with many international filmmakers with a hit on their hands, del Toro was wooed to Hollywood to do exactly his thing… except, of course, with tons of studio interference, notes, and meddling. The result was the compromised Mimic, whose lackluster reception was enough to get del Toro to go back abroad for his next film. The Spain set-and-shot The Devil’s Backbone was another cult hit, again enough for him to get tempted back to the States.
What followed was Blade II and Hellboy, which gave the pre-Marvel Cinematic Universe era of comic book movies an unpredictable shot in the arm. The latter film reunited him with Perlman, along with physical artist Doug Jones, who he first worked with on Mimic and would be crucial on his journey towards The Shape of Water.
2005’s Pan’s Labyrinth was a cross-cultural phenomenon, a grim fantasy and political commentary that’s still heavily watched today. Then 2008’s Hellboy II: The Golden Army had the unfortunate luck of being released a week before The Dark Knight. It took del Toro five years to return with the mech brawler Pacific Rim, which was followed by the Gothic ghost love story Crimson Peak. And then we come to The Shape of Water, his tender ode to Creature from the Black Lagoon.
Del Toro is currently prepping noir-thriller Nightmare Alley for a December 2021 release. Now, we’re ranking all Guillermo del Toro movies by Tomatometer!
Critics Consensus:Crimson Peak offers an engaging -- albeit somewhat slight -- diversion driven by a delightfully creepy atmosphere and director Guillermo del Toro's brilliant knack for unforgettable visuals.
Synopsis: After marrying the charming and seductive Sir Thomas Sharpe, young Edith (Mia Wasikowska) finds herself swept away to his remote... [More]
(Photo by Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox Film Corp, TriStar/Courtesy Everett Collection)
RT Recommends: 68 Inspiring Sports Movies
We’ve put together the ultimate starting lineup of inspiring sports movies! In no time, you’ll be riding horses, climbing rocks, driving powerful race cars, bolting cross-country, and coaching underdog teams to miraculous victory.
Or they’ll at least get you off the couch.
Some of the most esteemed Certified Fresh inspirational sports movies take on MMA (Warrior), boxing (Creed, Cinderella Man), auto-racing (Rush, Senna), basketball (Hoosiers, He Got Game), hockey (Miracle, Goon). Of course, not everything that glitters is strictly critics’ gold. Which is why we included movies like The Cutting Edge, Stick It, or Lords of Dogtown: They may be lower on the Tomatometer, but they’re high on electric inspiration.
Critics Consensus: Thanks to the spirited performances of a talented cast - particularly Will Ferrell and Jon Heder as rivals-turned-teammates -- Blades of Glory successfully spoofs inspirational sports dramas with inspired abandon.
Synopsis: Figure skaters Chazz Michael Michaels (Will Ferrell) and Jimmy MacElroy (Jon Heder) take their intense rivalry too far during the... [More]
Critics Consensus: Buoyed by standout performances from James Caan and Billy Dee Williams, Brian's Song is a touching tale of friendship whose central relationship transcends its standard sports movie moments.
Synopsis: Brian Piccolo (James Caan) and Gale Sayers (Billy Dee Williams) are teammates on the mid-1960s Chicago Bears. At a time... [More]
Critics Consensus: Despite the formulaic, fluffy storyline, this movie is surprisingly fun to watch, mostly due to its high energy and how it humorously spoofs cheerleading instead of taking itself too seriously.
Synopsis: The Toro cheerleading squad from Rancho Carne High School in San Diego has got spirit, spunk, sass and a killer... [More]
Critics Consensus: Decidedly slower and less limber than the Olympic runners at the center of its story, the film nevertheless manages to make effectively stirring use of its spiritual and patriotic themes.
Synopsis: In the class-obsessed and religiously divided United Kingdom of the early 1920s, two determined young runners train for the 1924... [More]
Critics Consensus:Creed brings the Rocky franchise off the mat for a surprisingly effective seventh round that extends the boxer's saga in interesting new directions while staying true to its classic predecessors' roots.
Synopsis: Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan) never knew his famous father, boxing champion Apollo Creed, who died before Adonis was born.... [More]
Critics Consensus: Though not without its flaws, He Got Game finds Spike Lee near the top of his game, combining trenchant commentary with his signature visuals and a strong performance from Denzel Washington.
Synopsis: Jake Shuttleworth (Denzel Washington) has spent the last six years in prison after accidentally killing his wife during a violent... [More]
Critics Consensus: Delivered with typically stately precision by director Clint Eastwood, Invictus may not be rousing enough for some viewers, but Matt Damon and Morgan Freeman inhabit their real-life characters with admirable conviction.
Synopsis: Following the fall of apartheid, newly elected President Nelson Mandela (Morgan Freeman) faces a South Africa that is racially and... [More]
Critics Consensus:The King of Kong is funny and compelling with more than a few poignant insights into human behavior. Director Seth Gordon presents the dueling King Kong players in all their obsessive complexity and with perfectly al dente observations.
Synopsis: Named "Video Game Player of the Century" in 1999, Billy Mitchell sets a record score in "Donkey Kong" that many... [More]
Critics Consensus: In addition to offering an enlightening early look into the world of future star/politician Arnold Schwarzenegger, Pumping Iron provides a witty and insightful overview of competitive bodybuilding.
Synopsis: This partly real and partly scripted film documents what many consider to be the golden age of bodybuilding that occurred... [More]
Critics Consensus:Race is nowhere near as thrillingly fleet or agile as its subject, but the story -- and a winning central performance from Stephan James -- are enough to carry it over the finish line.
Synopsis: Young Jesse Owens (Stephan James) becomes a track and field sensation while attending the Ohio State University in the early... [More]
Critics Consensus: While it's no slam dunk, Space Jam's silly, Looney Toons-laden slapstick and vivid animation will leave younger viewers satisfied -- though accompanying adults may be more annoyed than entertained.
Synopsis: Swackhammer (Danny DeVito), an evil alien theme park owner, needs a new attraction at Moron Mountain. When his gang, the... [More]
Critics Consensus: This drama about American track star and hero Steve Prefontaine intelligently looks at the character of this oft mythologized athlete and features a fantastic performance by Donald Sutherland as Prefontaine's trainer.
Synopsis: Before Steve Prefontaine (Billy Crudup) makes it to the 1972 Olympics in Munich, he is an unlikely track star at... [More]
There’s only one place where you can get clones, time travel, simulated realities, irradiated and irritated giant lizards, and space fights and beyond. (Maybe not all at once, but we can dream.) Anything’s possible in this creative nebula known as science fiction, and with its long and historic association with cinema, we present our choices of the greatest science-fiction movies ever: The 150 Essential Sci-Fi Movies!
As they do with horror, filmmakers use science fiction to reflect our aspirations, terrors, and issues of the times. Through genre lens, we can consider our impact on the environment (Godzilla, WALL-E), technology gone berserk (The Terminator, Ex Machina), identity (Blade Runner, The Matrix), and societal breakdowns (Children of Men, A Clockwork Orange). We might even check-in on the current state of the human condition (Gattaca, Her).
Or, maybe we just want to see giant ants wreak havoc across the neighborhood. There may not be a lot of subtext in a big monster movie like Them!, or even crowd-pleasing masterpieces like Star Wars or Back to the Future, but they speak to the one thing that attracts us to movies in the first place: escapism. Science-fiction movies are our tickets to planets far-away (Star Trek, Avatar, Starship Troopers), or a quick hop to a local joint in the solar system (The Martian, Total Recall). They take us just above the atmosphere (Gravity), deep down to the bottom of the ocean (20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, The Abyss), and into the human body (Fantastic Voyage). Limited only 2020by imagination, sci-fi inspires wonder, awe, terror, and hope for alternative mindsets and better futures.
Sci-fi spreads across subgenres, all represented here: the monster movie (Cloverfield), space opera (Serenity), cyberpunk (Ghost in the Shell), and post-apocalyptic (Mad Max: Fury Road) and more. Or it can fuse onto traditional genres like drama (Donnie Darko, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), comedy (Repo Man, Idiocracy), and action (Predator, Demoliton Man). Wherever the destination, these movies — each with at least 20 reviews — were selected because of their unique, fun, and possibly even mind-blowing spins on reality.
It’s time to strap in and cue the Theremin for some of the best science-fiction films created: Time to launch the 150 Essential Sci-Fi Movies!
Critics Consensus:Annihilation backs up its sci-fi visual wonders and visceral genre thrills with an impressively ambitious -- and surprisingly strange -- exploration of challenging themes that should leave audiences pondering long after the end credits roll.
Synopsis: Lena, a biologist and former soldier, joins a mission to uncover what happened to her husband inside Area X --... [More]
Critics Consensus:Contact elucidates stirring scientific concepts and theological inquiry at the expense of satisfying storytelling, making for a brainy blockbuster that engages with its ideas, if not its characters.
Synopsis: In this Zemeckis-directed adaptation of the Carl Sagan novel, Dr. Ellie Arroway (Jodie Foster) races to interpret a possible message... [More]
Critics Consensus: Remixing Roger Corman's B-movie by way of the Off-Broadway musical, Little Shop of Horrors offers camp, horror and catchy tunes in equal measure -- plus some inspired cameos by the likes of Steve Martin and Bill Murray.
Synopsis: Meek flower shop assistant Seymour (Rick Moranis) pines for co-worker Audrey (Ellen Greene). During a total eclipse, he discovers an... [More]
Critics Consensus: The epitome of so-bad-it's-good cinema, Plan 9 From Outer Space is an unintentionally hilarious sci-fi "thriller" from anti-genius Ed Wood that is justly celebrated for its staggering ineptitude.
Synopsis: Residents of California's San Fernando Valley are under attack by flying saucers from outer space. The aliens, led by Eros... [More]
Critics Consensus: It doesn't fulfill the potential of its ambitious themes, butSilent Running stands as a decidedly unique type of sci-fi journey marked by intimate character work and a melancholic mood.
Synopsis: After the end of all botanical life on Earth, ecologist Freeman Lowell (Bruce Dern) maintains a greenhouse on a space... [More]
Critics Consensus: Steven Spielberg's adaptation of War of the Worlds delivers on the thrill and paranoia of H.G. Wells' classic novel while impressively updating the action and effects for modern audiences.
Synopsis: Dockworker Ray Ferrier (Tom Cruise) struggles to build a positive relationship with his two children, Rachel (Dakota Fanning) and Robbie... [More]
Critics Consensus:The Fountain -- a movie about metaphysics, universal patterns, Biblical symbolism, and boundless love spread across one thousand years -- is visually rich but suffers from its own unfocused ambitions.
Synopsis: A man (Hugh Jackman) travels through time on a quest for immortality and to save the woman (Rachel Weisz) he... [More]
Critics Consensus: Danny Boyle continues his descent into mind-twisting sci-fi madness, taking us along for the ride. Sunshine fulfills the dual requisite necessary to become classic sci-fi: dazzling visuals with intelligent action.
Synopsis: In the not-too-distant future, Earth's dying sun spells the end for humanity. In a last-ditch effort to save the planet,... [More]
Critics Consensus: Employing gritty camerawork and evocative sound effects, Invasion of the Body Snatchers is a powerful remake that expands upon themes and ideas only lightly explored in the original.
Synopsis: This remake of the classic horror film is set in San Francisco. Matthew Bennell (Donald Sutherland) assumes that when a... [More]
Critics Consensus:A Quiet Place artfully plays on elemental fears with a ruthlessly intelligent creature feature that's as original as it is scary -- and establishes director John Krasinski as a rising talent.
Synopsis: If they hear you, they hunt you. A family must live in silence to avoid mysterious creatures that hunt by... [More]
Critics Consensus: Fueled by bombastic violence and impressive special effects, rooted in self-satire and deadpan humor, Dredd 3D does a remarkable job of capturing its source material's gritty spirit.
Synopsis: Mega City One is a vast, violent metropolis where felons rule the streets. The only law lies with cops called... [More]
Critics Consensus: Though perhaps not as strong dramatically as it is technologically, TRON is an original and visually stunning piece of science fiction that represents a landmark work in the history of computer animation.
Synopsis: When talented computer engineer Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) finds out that Ed Dillinger (David Warner), an executive at his company,... [More]
Critics Consensus: Richard Kelly's debut feature Donnie Darko is a daring, original vision, packed with jarring ideas and intelligence and featuring a remarkable performance from Jake Gyllenhaal as the troubled title character.
Synopsis: In a funny, moving and distinctly mind-bending journey through suburban America, one extraordinary but disenchanted teenager is about to take... [More]
Critics Consensus: A faithful adaptation of Philip K. Dick's novel, A Scanner Darkly takes the viewer on a visual and mind-blowing journey into the author's conception of a drug-addled and politically unstable world.
Synopsis: In the near future, as America virtually loses the war on drugs, Robert Arctor, a narcotics cop in Orange County,... [More]
Critics Consensus: The utterly gorgeous special effects frequently overshadow the fact that The Abyss is also a totally gripping, claustrophobic thriller, complete with an interesting crew of characters.
Synopsis: Ed Harris and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio are formerly married petroleum engineers who still have some issues to work out. They... [More]
Critics Consensus: Led by Rupert Wyatt's stylish direction, some impressive special effects, and a mesmerizing performance by Andy Serkis, Rise of the Planet of the Apes breathes unlikely new life into a long-running franchise.
Synopsis: Will Rodman (James Franco), a scientist in San Francisco, is experimenting with a drug that he hopes will cure his... [More]
Critics Consensus: Featuring dazzling, disorienting cinematography from the great James Wong Howe and a strong lead performance by Rock Hudson, Seconds is a compellingly paranoid take on the legend of Faust.
Synopsis: Banker Arthur Hamilton (John Randolph) gets a call one day from a friend he thought was dead. It turns out... [More]
Critics Consensus: Though it's dated in spots, The War of the Worlds retains an unnerving power, updating H.G. Wells' classic sci-fi tale to the Cold War era and featuring some of the best special effects of any 1950s film.
Synopsis: Scientist Clayton Forrester (Gene Barry) and Sylvia Van Buren (Ann Robinson) are the first to arrive at the site of... [More]
Critics Consensus: Smart, thrilling, and surprisingly funny, The Martian offers a faithful adaptation of the bestselling book that brings out the best in leading man Matt Damon and director Ridley Scott.
Synopsis: When astronauts blast off from the planet Mars, they leave behind Mark Watney (Matt Damon), presumed dead after a fierce... [More]
Critics Consensus:Interstellar represents more of the thrilling, thought-provoking, and visually resplendent filmmaking moviegoers have come to expect from writer-director Christopher Nolan, even if its intellectual reach somewhat exceeds its grasp.
Synopsis: In Earth's future, a global crop blight and second Dust Bowl are slowly rendering the planet uninhabitable. Professor Brand (Michael... [More]
Critics Consensus: Propelled by Charlie Kaufman's smart, imaginative script and Michel Gondry's equally daring directorial touch, Eternal Sunshine is a twisty yet heartfelt look at relationships and heartache.
Synopsis: After a painful breakup, Clementine (Kate Winslet) undergoes a procedure to erase memories of her former boyfriend Joel (Jim Carrey)... [More]
Critics Consensus: Playing as both an exciting sci-fi adventure and a remarkable portrait of childhood, Steven Spielberg's touching tale of a homesick alien remains a piece of movie magic for young and old.
Synopsis: After a gentle alien becomes stranded on Earth, the being is discovered and befriended by a young boy named Elliott... [More]
Critics Consensus: Gripping, well-acted, funny, and clever, Edge of Tomorrow offers entertaining proof that Tom Cruise is still more than capable of shouldering the weight of a blockbuster action thriller.
Synopsis: When Earth falls under attack from invincible aliens, no military unit in the world is able to beat them. Maj.... [More]
Critics Consensus: T2 features thrilling action sequences and eye-popping visual effects, but what takes this sci-fi/ action landmark to the next level is the depth of the human (and cyborg) characters.
Synopsis: In this sequel set eleven years after "The Terminator," young John Connor (Edward Furlong), the key to civilization's victory over... [More]
Critics Consensus: Misunderstood when it first hit theaters, the influence of Ridley Scott's mysterious, neo-noir Blade Runner has deepened with time. A visually remarkable, achingly human sci-fi masterpiece.
Synopsis: Deckard (Harrison Ford) is forced by the police Boss (M. Emmet Walsh) to continue his old job as Replicant Hunter.... [More]
Critics Consensus: One of the most influential of all sci-fi films -- and one of the most controversial -- Stanley Kubrick's 2001 is a delicate, poetic meditation on the ingenuity -- and folly -- of mankind.
Synopsis: An imposing black structure provides a connection between the past and the future in this enigmatic adaptation of a short... [More]
To some fans, Idris Elba will forever be Stringer Bell from The Wire. To others, he’ll always be best remembered as John Luther. For still others, he’s the guy who gave us the Heimdall of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, or — and this is admittedly a much smaller subset — finally brought gunslinger Roland Deschain to the big screen in the long-gestating adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower. All of which is to say that Mr. Elba’s done a lot in his impressive career, and by all appearances, he’s still just getting started: even if those persistent rumors about him taking over the James Bond franchise never pan out, he’s got plenty of projects lined up to add to an eclectic filmography that already includes some of the more popular and widely acclaimed TV and film releases in recent memory, including an original character in The Suicide Squad. And now we’re ranking all Idris Elba movies by Tomatometer!
Critics Consensus: It may feature such accomplished actors as Hilary Swank and Stephen Rea, but The Reaping also boasts the apropos tagline "What hath God wrought?" It's schlocky, spiritually shallow, and scare-free.
Synopsis: Katherine Morrissey (Hilary Swank), a former Christian missionary, lost her faith after the tragic deaths of her family. Now she... [More]
Critics Consensus: With a weak script, uneven CG work, and a Nic Cage performance so predictably loony it's no longer amusing, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance aims to be trashy fun but ends up as plain trash.
Synopsis: Now hiding out in Eastern Europe, Johnny Blaze (Nicolas Cage) is still struggling with the curse of the Ghost Rider... [More]
Critics Consensus: Ridley Scott's ambitious quasi-prequel to Alien may not answer all of its big questions, but it's redeemed by its haunting visual grandeur and compelling performances -- particularly Michael Fassbender as a fastidious android.
Synopsis: The discovery of a clue to mankind's origins on Earth leads a team of explorers to the darkest parts of... [More]
Critics Consensus: Exuberant and eye-popping, Avengers: Age of Ultron serves as an overstuffed but mostly satisfying sequel, reuniting its predecessor's unwieldy cast with a few new additions and a worthy foe.
Synopsis: When Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) jump-starts a dormant peacekeeping program, things go terribly awry, forcing him, Thor (Chris Hemsworth),... [More]
Critics Consensus:Avengers: Infinity War ably juggles a dizzying array of MCU heroes in the fight against their gravest threat yet, and the result is a thrilling, emotionally resonant blockbuster that (mostly) realizes its gargantuan ambitions.
Synopsis: Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk and the rest of the Avengers unite to battle their most powerful enemy yet --... [More]
Critics Consensus: The brilliantly well-rounded Zootopia offers a thoughtful, inclusive message that's as rich and timely as its sumptuously state-of-the-art animation -- all while remaining fast and funny enough to keep younger viewers entertained.
Synopsis: From the largest elephant to the smallest shrew, the city of Zootopia is a mammal metropolis where various animals live... [More]
Guillermo del Toro just took home the Best Director Oscar (hell, let’s thrown in a Best Picture statue as well) for The Shape of Water. Look, everyone who’s been paying attention to Del Toro knows he’s your guy to turn a monster romance movie into the best of the year. But if you’re new to GDT, then watch this video with his highest-rated movies, including Pan’s Labyrinth, Pacific Rim, and the Hellboy series.
Man’s best friend, the giant robot, gets a little more love as Netflix drops its third season of Voltron: Legendary Defender. In celebration, we’ve bolted together one heckuva mecha list: Choose and upvote your favorite giant robots from TV and movie history.
Moviedom’s main ape makes his first theater appearance since Peter Jackson’s 2005 remake with Kong: Skull Island, a 1970s-set adventure starring Tom Hiddleston and Brie Larson who travel to the King’s home to confirm his mythic existence. The thrill of seeing mammoths trashing cities and vulnerable public transit dates back to the movie-going experience’s earliest decades, which we cover in this week’s gallery of 24 Fresh giant monster films!
This week’s Ketchup focuses on ten top headlines from the last seven days in Hollywood’s film development cycles. Included in the mix this time around are stories about such movies as The Flash, Furious 8, Disney’s Moana, and the J.K. Rowling spinoff Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
This Week’s Top Story
MARVEL’S ANT-MAN AND THE WASP SCHEDULED FOR 2018
This year’s New York Comic Con is going on as this column goes live this weekend, and for that reason, it was probably to be expected that some sort of Marvel Studios news might be announced either at the event, or just before. And that is exactly what happened, with most of it coming from the sequel that Marvel Studios announced this week. Following its international box office success, this summer’s Ant-Man has earned a sequel in the form of Ant-Man and the Wasp (7/6/18), with the second half referring to the character played in the first film by Evangeline Lilly. (Or at least one version, as there are hints that the original Wasp, Janet Van Dyne, may also appear in the film, just as Michael Douglas played Doctor Henry Pym in the first.) This announcement, and the release date, makes Wasp the first female Marvel Studios character to be included in one of their film’s titles. (2005’s Elektra doesn’t count because it was released by 20th Century Fox, and not Marvel Studios.) Captain Marvel had previously been expected to be the first, but that film has now been pushed back several months to March 18, 2019. This announcement also makes Ant-Man the first Marvel Studios character to receive a quasi-solo sequel outside of their “big three” (Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America). Marvel’s Black Panther also had its release date changed this week, but it instead was moved up to February 16, 2018. Marvel Studios has also announced three release dates in 2020, but those dates are currently for untitled mystery movies, which are likely to be a combination of sequels and at least one new property (which one is anyone’s guess). Marvel also announced this week that Black Pantheris being written by Joe Robert Cole, who came out of the same in-house writers program that produced Nicole Perlman and Guardians of the Galaxy. We also learned this week that Captain Marvelwill be written by Meg LeFauve (Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur), and the aforementioned Nicole Perlman.
Fresh Developments This Week
1. STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON AND INTO… FURIOUS 8
Following months of speculation, this week, we learned who the director of the eighth Fast and Furious film will be, and confirmation of the news came directly from the director’s Twitter account. Furious 8 will be directed by F. Gary Gray, whose filmography bears a few hints that he may have been quasi-destined to someday join a franchise like Fast and Furious. Gray previously worked with Vin Diesel on the action/drama A Man Apart in 2003, and also has experience with car-racing action in the form of the remake of The Italian Job (also released in 2003). More recently, F. Gary Gray’s N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton was another of Universal Pictures’ box office hits, following the success of Furious 7. Universal Pictures has scheduled the movie (which is variously described as either Fast 8 or Furious 8) for release on April 14, 2017.
2. JAKE GYLLENHAAL AND TILDA SWINTON HEADLINE KOREAN MONSTER MOVIE OKJA
After an impressive career in South Korea with such films as Memories of Murder, Mother, and The Host, director Bong Joon-ho achieved even greater exposure in 2013 and 2014 with the international release of the science fiction film Snowpiercer. For his next film, Bong is repeating the theme with a new monster/horror film called Okja,which will feature a cast of both Korean and Western/American talents. Tilda Swinton, who costarred in Snowpiercer, was the first Western name announced, and this week, we found several more. Jake Gyllenhaal, Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood), Bill Nighy, and Kelly Macdonald (Boardwalk Empire) are all now in advanced talks to costar in Okja. The premise is currently unknown, except that the lead will be a Korean actress, supported by English-speaking actors filming scenes in New York City.
3. PACIFIC RIM DIRECTOR WANTS TO CAST ARYA STARK AS A JAEGER PILOT
The idea of a sequel to the giant-robots-vs-giant-monsters action movie PacificRim seemed to hit a roadblock recently when Universal Pictures pulled Pacific Rim 2 from its 2017 schedule. (The move was made to make room for Pitch Perfect 3 on August 4, 2017.) Despite that delay, director Guillermo Del Toro has apparently not given up on the prospect of a Pacific Rim 2 (this is, after all, a director quasi-famous for all of the delays his films have received over the last 15 years or so). Del Toro took to his Twitter account this week to tweet, “Had lunch with Maisie Williams yesterday. Remarkable. Dammit – if PR2 happens, that girl is getting a Jaeger.” GDT is referring to the “Jaeger” giant robots that the pilots in Pacific Rim used to battle the invading giant monsters from another dimension. And Maisie Williams is better known to many fans as Arya Stark, the young sword-wielding heiress-of-Winterfell from HBO’s Game of Thrones.
4. RON PERLMAN CAST AS A GOBLIN IN FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM
Continuing that thread, as Pacific Rim 2 has hit a development and production delay, it’s probably to be expected that the actors that probably had been planning on spending time on it are now moving on to other projects. One such actor is long-time GDT collaborator Ron Perlman (AKA his Hellboy star). This week, we learned that Ron Perlman has been cast by Warner Bros in their adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Perlman will play a goblin in the film, which expands Rowling’s Harry Potter universe, in an adventure which is set across the Atlantic and 70 years earlier, in the New York City of the 1920s or 1930s. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will be directed by four-time Harry Potter director David Yates, and is scheduled for release on November 18, 2016.
5. DISNEY ANNOUNCES 14-YEAR-OLD STAR OF ANIMATED ADVENTURE MOANA
Late last year, Walt Disney Pictures announced a global casting call to find the young lady who would provide the title voice for Moana. The animated film, scheduled for release on November 23, 2015, is a magical adventure set within the mythology of Pacific Islanders. This week, the world learned that the role has gone to 14-year-old newcomer Auli’i Cravalho, who is a Native Hawaiian. The news came via a two minute announcement on YouTube, where you can meet Cravalho, and see the moment when she was offered the lead role as Moana.
6. ELLEN PAGE TO STAR IN REMAKE OF JULIA ROBERTS’ FLATLINERS
Every once in a while, a movie gets made just before one of its young stars becomes a major, major movie star. A memorable example of this was the 1990 supernatural drama Flatliners, about five medical school students who start experimenting with near-death experiences. Flatliners was released on July 27, 1990, and its male stars included Kevin Bacon and Kiefer Sutherland (both of whom were already stars from their work in 1980s “teen” movies). What changed in between filming and release, however, is that the female star of Flatliners, Julia Roberts, starred in a movie called Pretty Woman that was released four months earlier on March 23, 1990. For their remake of Flatliners, Sony Pictures and producer Michael Douglas are not choosing another soon-to-be-discovered actress for the female lead. Instead, the role has gone to Ellen Page, the star of Juno, Hard Candy, and the actress who played Kitty Pryde in two of the X-Men movies. The Flatliners remake will be directed by Niels Arden Oplev, who is currently best known for directing the original Swedish version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (the one that made Noomi Rapace a star).
Rotten Ideas of The Week
3. THE FLASH TO BE DIRECTED BY… A VAMPIRE/ZOMBIE SPECIALIST?
Based on the last 50+ years of televised evidence, nailing comic book superhero adaptations in weekly television form is an enterprise with lots of obstacles and hurdles to overcome. One recent such show that audiences and critics appear to think has gotten it “right” is The Flash, which currently holds an impressive 98 percent Tomatometer score. The show has accomplished this at least partly by aiming for “fun” and a light-and-bright approach to the characters and plots. Unlike Marvel, which maintains the same continuity and “universe” for both movies and TV shows, Warner Bros and DC Comics separates their shows and films, and so the same is being done with The Flash (3/23/18). This week, the news broke about which director Warner Bros has hired for The Flash, and their choice was surprising for a few reasons. First of all, screenwriter and producer Seth Grahame-Smith is not (yet) a director, but will be making his debut with The Flash. Grahame-Smith’s career focus has been mostly on books and scripts that “mash up” horror and historical subjects, such as Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, Pride & Prejudice & Zombies (the first trailer of which debuted this week), and to a lesser degree, Tim Burton’s adaptation of Dark Shadows. For that reason, The Flash never seemed like an obvious choice for Grahame-Smith’s feature film directorial debut. Ezra Miller (The Perks of Being a Wallflower) will star as The Flash when it hits theaters on March 23, 2018. It was also reported this week that Warner Bros has restarted development of the long-in-the-works Justice League Dark project, featuring characters like John Constantine, Swamp Thing, Deadman, and Zatanna.
2. LIVE-ACTION CRUELLA, IN FIFTY SHADES OF BLACK AND WHITE DOG FUR
The Weekly Ketchup first reported on Disney’s plans for a live action Cruella (De Vil) movie two years ago this week. At that time, the studio had hired screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna to work on the remake, following her work on movies like 27 Dresses and The Devil Wears Prada. Two years later, Walt Disney Pictures is still developing (“fast tracking,” even) the 101 Dalmatians spinoff for Cruella De Vil, and with that news, comes a new screenwriter. The live action reboot is now being adapted by Kelly Marcel, who previously worked with Disney on the “making of Mary Poppins” movie Saving Mr. Banks. Kelly Marcel’s most famous (and most recent) film, however, is Fifty Shades of Grey (25 percent on the Tomatometer). Cruella will be the third major live action version of the character, following Glenn Close’s version in the 1996 and 2001 101 Dalmatians movies, and her appearance last year on ABC’s Once Upon a Time.
1. THE PINK POWER RANGER IS THE FIRST NEW POWER RANGERS STAR
(Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez / Staff / Getty Images)
With a release date only about 15 months away (1/13/17), Lionsgate’s new live action Power Rangers appeared to kick into a new level of pre-production this week, which began with three “short lists” revealed for the Black, Red, and Pink Power Rangers. (The Yellow and Blue Power Rangers will make up the other 40% of the team.) Unsurprisingly, the actors listed are mostly young, and for a movie where much of the budget will probably be spent on monsters and fight sequences, none of them are currently “name stars.” The first confirmed Power Rangers star was then announced on Wednesday via the movie’s Instagram account. The role of the Pink Power Ranger will be played by relative newcomer Naomi Scott, whose filmography includes the teenage daughter Maddy Shannon in the FOX TV series Terra Nova, and a small role in last week’s The Martian. There was also a report this week about the film’s premise (which is not a total reboot as previously reported), including who the main villain will be, but it might be a spoiler to recent seasons of the TV show(s), so click-and-read with that warning. Power Rangers will be the second feature film for director Dean Israelite, who made his debut earlier this year with Project Almanac (34 percent on the Tomatometer).
The 12th annual Visual Effects Society Award nominees were announced on January 14, 2014. Winners will be announced at a ceremony to be held on February 12 at the Beverly Hilton, Los Angeles. The Visionary Award will be presented to Alfonso Cuarón (Gravity), and the Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to award-winning visual effects pioneer and innovator, John Dykstra. The VES rewards outstanding visual effects artistry and innovation in film, animation, television, commercials and video games. Here is a list of the films and television shows that were nominated:
Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Feature Motion Picture