Mel Gibson and Tye Sheridan to Star in Black List Thriller ‘Black Flies’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Mel Gibson and “Ready Player One” star Tye Sheridan are in final negotiations to star in a thriller called “Black Flies,” the film’s international sales agent IMR International announced Friday ahead of Berlin’s European Film Market.

“Black Flies” is based on a novel by Shannon Burke and was adapted by Ryan King in a screenplay that landed on the 2018 Black List of the best unproduced scripts.

Jean-Stephane Sauvaire, who last directed A24’s “A Prayer Before Dawn,” will direct.

Also Read: Mel Gibson Joins Charlie Hunnam Action Film ‘Waldo’

Mad River Pictures is financing and producing alongside Christopher Kopp, Lucan Toh & Babak Anvari, and Anthony Katagas. Sheridan will also be a producer on the film. Production is slated to begin in the second quarter of 2019. CAA and WME are handling U.S. rights for the film, and IMR International will begin foreign sales in Berlin next week.

“Black Flies” is the story of a young paramedic, Ollie Cross (Sheridan), navigating his first year on the job. He’s partnered with Rutkovsky (Gibson), an experienced medic who thrusts Ollie into the harsh realities of New York’s inner-city streets.  Amidst high crime rates, homelessness, and widespread drug use, Ollie finds his perspective on life and death beginning to shift.

Gibson and Sauvaire are represented by CAA. Sauvaire is also repped by Grandview. Sheridan is repped by WME. Ryan King  is repped by UTA and Heroes and Villains Entertainment. Two & Two Pictures is repped by WME and Grandview, and Shannon Burke is repped by Paradigm.

IMR International just sold the Sundance film “The Report” to Amazon in an eight-figure sale. And Two &Two Pictures just premiered “Wounds” at this year’s Sundance.

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Mel Gibson & Tye Sheridan To Star In Blacklist Thriller ‘Black Flies’ For ‘A Prayer Before Dawn’ Director — EFM

Read on: Deadline.

Mel Gibson and Tye Sheridan are in final negotiations to star in Blacklist screenplay Black Flies by Ryan King, based on the novel by Shannon Burke.
The film will be directed by Jean-Stephane Sauvaire, who last helmed well-received A24 title A Prayer B…

‘Dark Phoenix’ Trailer: A New Evil Rises From The Ashes In ‘X-Men’ Sequel

Read on: Deadline.

The Dark Phoenix saga is one of the most memorable and pivotal stories in the X-Men comics and after waiting with bated breath, we finally got a look at the latest installment of the highly anticipated sequel to the mutant franchise tonight in the new …

The Match Factory, 30WEST Board Venice Competition Drama ‘The Mountain’ Starring Tye Sheridan, Jeff Goldblum

Read on: Deadline.

EXCLUSIVE: European sales stalwart The Match Factory has taken international rights to intriguing Venice Competition entry The Mountain, starring Tye Sheridan and Jeff Goldblum.
Rick Alverson (Entertainment) directs the drama, which also stars Hannah G…

‘The Yellow Birds’ Trailer: Jennifer Aniston & Alden Ehrenreich Lead Big-Name Cast In Iraq War Drama

Read on: Deadline.

Two young U.S. soldiers are heading for a deployment in Iraq. “Promise you’ll look out for him over there,” the mother of one tells her son’s buddy. “Yeah, of course,” he replies.
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‘Ready Player One’ Surpasses $500 Million at Worldwide Box Office

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Steven Spielberg’s “Ready Player One” has crossed the $500 million mark at the worldwide box office, Warner Bros. announced Saturday.

Domestically, the film has hit $120.6 million to date since its opening on March 29. Internationally, the film has grossed $379.5 million, earning more than $200 million in China alone.

Also Read: Steven Spielberg Is Back! ‘Ready Player One’ Scores His Best Box Office Debut in a Decade

“Ready Player One” stars Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, Lena Waithe, T.J. Miller, Mark Rylance and Simon Pegg.

Spielberg directed “Ready Player One” from a screenplay by Zak Penn and Ernest Cline, based on the latter’s novel of the same name. Donald De Line, Kristie Macosko Krieger, Dan Farah and Spielberg produced. Adam Somner, Daniel Lupi, Chris DeFaria and Bruce Berman served as executive producers.

Also Read: Steven Spielberg Becomes First Director to Top $10 Billion at Worldwide Box Office

The film follows a young man who lives in a dystopian future where almost everyone escapes their horrid reality through a virtual world called the OASIS. With the help of his friends, he sets out to complete a quest created by the OASIS’ late creator before the head of an evil corporation can finish it and take over the virtual system.

Earlier this week, Spielberg became the first director to ever gross more than $10 billion at the worldwide box office, with “Ready Player One” becoming his highest-grossing film in the last decade and nudging him into eight figures in all-time career grosses.

Spielberg’s all-time top performer was 1993’s “Jurassic Park,” which grossed $983.8 million worldwide. That was followed by 2008’s critically reviled “Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Crystal Skull” ($786.6 million) and the 1982 classic “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial,” which earned $717 million — without adjusting for inflation.

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How ‘The LEGO Movie’ Was ‘Ready Player One’ First, and Better (Commentary)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Note: This post contains spoilers for “Ready Player One.”)

If you’re a fan of Steven Spielberg’s hit film “Ready Player One,” I get it. On the surface it’s hard to hate on the idea of a film packed with nostalgic callouts to old pop culture, plus a message of friendship, acceptance, and the value of real life versus escapism.

But that’s on the surface. Ultimately, the larger messages and themes are just backdrop to cool visuals and a ton of references, the references don’t really amount to anything except a list of things audiences probably like, and the film’s characters largely just define themselves mainly by liking that stuff.

But what if we told you there was a far superior version of “Ready Player One” that is all of that and much more, and also came out four years earlier? There is: it’s called “The LEGO Movie.”

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Both “Ready Player One” and “The LEGO Movie” are epic adventures about playing in a fantasy world populated by characters owned largely by Warner Bros., dressed up in more meaningful messages to dilute the consumerism. And both films feature deliberately uninteresting protagonists who seem defined largely by their interests. But that’s where the similarities basically end.

The main character of “Ready Player One,” Wade (Tye Sheridan), proudly likes the right things — “Back to the Future,” “Buckaroo Banzai,” “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” “The Shining” and so on. It’s part of his quest to win riches by solving a puzzle at the heart of the online virtual world OASIS, essentially an enormous online video game. But while OASIS is a place where you can supposedly “be anything,” the things that people most often end up being are the creations of other people, and owned by other people.

The mess of characters running around the OASIS — and there’s a lot of them — aren’t made interesting in some way by being used by the players who inhabit them. They’re just quick shots of things you’ve seen before. “The Iron Giant,” the DeLorean from “Back to The Future,” and so on.

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But where liking the right stuff and knowing everything about it is a virtue (and Wade’s whole life) in “Ready Player One,” “The LEGO Movie” uses that idea as a jumping off point. The film follows regular guy Emmet (voiced by Chris Pratt) who, like Wade, likes everything everyone else likes and defines himself by his conformity.

But unlike Wade, Emmet spends the movie figuring out his own identity. The entire plot of “The LEGO Movie” is Emmet finding what makes him unique, an idea taken even further when it’s revealed the entire story is a game being played by Finn (Jadon Sand), a real-life kid. The main conflict of the movie — that LEGO character President Business (Will Ferrell) wants to destroy the universe with the “Kragle,” a bottle of Krazy Glue — is actually a metaphor for Finn’s father wanting to freeze his LEGO sets into permanent finished states. The film eventually has Finn’s father realize that his son is using the toys to create for himself, and to express his individuality.

Meanwhile, even as it makes use of a references to the Warner Bros. stable — DC superheroes, Gandalf from “The Lord of the Rings,” Dumbledore from “Harry Potter” — “The LEGO Movie” goes a step further than “Ready Player One.”

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“The LEGO Movie” jokes that Superman would ghost an annoying fellow hero, that Batman would be an insufferable narcissist, that Gandalf and Dumbledore don’t have time to shepherd every random hero through his or her origin story. These aren’t just shoutouts to random characters, they’re subversions of viewer expectation. Your understanding of the source material is expanded, not just catered to.

Both “Ready Player One” and “The LEGO Movie” are ultimately about playing in a preexisting pop culture world. But where “Ready Player One” flashes a picture of a thing you like, “The LEGO Movie” bothers to know something about it, and turns it into something new and surprisingly deep. That’s special and, four years later, something that hasn’t fully been duplicated.

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Tye Sheridan’s Romance-Drama ‘All Summers End’ Bought by Gravitas (EXCLUSIVE)

Read on: Variety.

Gravitas Ventures has acquired all U.S. rights to Tye Sheridan’s coming-of -age film “All Summers End” for a June 1 release. Written and directed by Kyle Wilamowski (“Snow Angels”), the film also stars Kaitlyn Dever, Pablo Schreiber, Austin Abrams, Annabeth Gish, Ryan Lee, Paula Malcomson and Bill Sage. Sheridan, the lead in Steven Spielberg’s “Ready […]

Does ‘Ready Player One’ Have a Post-Credits Scene?

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Steven Spielberg’s giant nostalgia trip through a huge virtual reality world, “Ready Player One,” is upon us, ready to blast audiences with crazy action scenes and visual references to everything they ever liked as an ’80s (or ’90s) kid.

The movie follows Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan), who spends all his time in the OASIS, a massive online virtual world filled with things to do, places to go and characters to be. It’s like the internet if you could walk around in it. Wade is obsessed with finding Halliday’s Easter Egg, a hidden gem left by the OASIS’ late creator (Mark Rylance). Like a digital Willy Wonka, Halliday left the Easter Egg after his death for a way to pass on ownership of the OASIS to a new person, along with fabulous wealth.

“Ready Player One” is a huge romp through its own virtual universe, and in the era of properties like “Star Wars” and Marvel superhero movies, it seems like it might be primed for a cinematic universe of its own. Lots of movies include post-credits scenes teasing potential sequels to get audiences primed for the next chapter in the story — so do you need to wait around through the credits of “Ready Player One” for a post-credits scene hinting at the OASIS cinematic universe?

Also Read: 14 Times Video Games Continued the Stories of Movies (Photos)

The answer to that question, in fact, is no. There’s no post-credits scene on “Ready Player One.” That might even be considered a callback to Spielberg’s other blockbusters, that end at the end, and then the credits roll. In any event, if you need to sprint to the bathroom or you just want to start cataloguing all the Easter Eggs that pop up in the background of “Ready Player One,” you can do so after the final scene.

Though “Ready Player One” has no teaser for future movies, it’s not hard to imagine how they might come to be if the film is a hit among fans — especially since Ernest Cline, who wrote the novel on which the film is based, has written other books about lonely fanboys like Wade, including the 2016 novel “Armada.”

In addition, the OASIS spans multiple planets, like “Planet Doom” and “Planet Minecraft,” that reference everything from popular games and movies of now, to the ones Halliday was obsessed with from the 1980s and 1990s. It’d be easy to dip into the virtual world, and potentially, to find new stories to tell.

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‘Ready Player One’ Review: Steven Spielberg’s Dizzying, Dazzling VR Fantasia Of Pop Culture Is Something To Behold

Read on: Deadline.

It is virtually impossible to see Ready Player OneSteven Spielberg’s wild ride into the world of virtual reality, just once. There is so much going on in this movie, both retro and futuristic, that it is hard to compute in one sitting. A pop culture treasure hunt of the past 30 years as seen through the prism of a VR Disneyland called Oasis, Ready Player One rotates from the real world of 2045 to a virtual one filled with references to movies, music, personalities…

‘Ready Player One’ Film Review: Spielberg’s Weaponized Nostalgia Is an Exercise in Overkill

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Steven Spielberg’s “Ready Player One” might mark the beginning of a new era in filmmaking or the end of an old one, but either way it feels like a failed experiment in building a new story on the carcasses of old movies, TV shows and video games.

Granted, I’m also not sure if this movie is aimed squarely at me or if I’m the last person who should see it: the screenplay by Zak Penn and Ernest Cline (based on Cline’s novel) seems to be weaponizing my own personal nostalgia for John Hughes, Monty Python, “Buckaroo Banzai” and other objects of obsession from my late teens and early 20s. On paper, I’m this movie’s target audience, but in practice — to put it in terms of the film’s endless quoting and referencing — it’s like being trapped in the “Ironic Punishment Division” on “The Simpsons,” only I very quickly got sick of being force-fed all those delicious donuts.

“Ready Player One” takes a fairly recognizable through line right out of “Charlie”/”Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” — eccentric creator uses a contest to search for the heir to his cuckoo kingdom — and buries it in virtual reality simulations and a hodgepodge of pop-culture nostalgia. The results are a murky mishmash that reminds us that, for all of Spielberg’s many appreciable strengths as a filmmaker, comedy and animation aren’t necessarily at the top of the list. (By the same token, if you love “1941” and/or “Tintin,” this might be the movie for you.)

Watch Video: Steve Spielberg’s ‘Ready Player One’ Trailer Dives Deeper Into the Oasis

Our Wonka is Halliday (Mark Rylance), who created a vast and intricate virtual world known as Oasis, which has become a respite for residents of the grimy post-apocalyptic 2045. (Oasis is supposed to be a global phenomenon; we’re apparently not meant to notice that, in the non-virtual world, all of the characters in the film live in or near Columbus, Ohio.) Upon his death, Halliday announced that he hid three keys in the recesses of the Oasis, and whoever finds them will inherit ownership of the whole kit and caboodle.

While the evil IOI corporation enslaves workers in an elaborate attempt to solve the clues and find the keys, Oasis is also full of independent treasure hunters like young Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan), who is known in the virtual world as “Parzival,” or “Z” for short. When he and pals H (Lena Waithe), Sho (Philip Zhao) and Daito (Win Morisaki) aren’t playing Halliday’s games — including a virtual road race through Manhattan where the obstacles include dinosaurs and King Kong — they’re studying Halliday’s memories and his cultural obsessions for hints and guideposts.

Also Read: Why Ben Mendelsohn’s ‘Ready Player One’ Baddie Won’t Be Faithful to the Book

Along the way, Z. falls for fellow treasure hunter Art3mis (Olivia Cooke, “Thoroughbreds”), although she is at first hesitant to let him get to know her in the real world as Samantha. But the closer that Wade/Z. and his friends get to Halliday’s treasure, the more that IOI bigwig Sorrento (an entertainingly hammy Ben Mendelsohn) tries to destroy them and take over Oasis for himself.

The main selling point of “Ready Player One” has been the plethora of pop-culture icons from anime, TV, video games and movies that are woven throughout the movie; there will no doubt be a fascinating Blu-ray extra in which “Pop-Up Video” bubbles appear throughout to point out all these hidden nuggets, but the camerawork is so hyperactive and the Oasis scenes are so often muddy that most of these details were lost.

Part of why we’re supposed to hiss Sorrento is his inability to tell “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” from “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” (while, presumably, we notice that both “Watts” and “Samantha” are characters from “Some Kind of Wonderful” and “Sixteen Candles,” respectively). But “Ready Player One” doesn’t do much with its trove of references beyond baking a Memberberry Pie. It certainly doesn’t earn the right to have its characters blunder through a Stanley Kubrick movie at one point, although if that segment plays for you, so will the rest of the film.

Also Read: Steven Spielberg Reveals ‘Indiana Jones 5’ Production Start Date

And as someone who was an architect of so much 1980s pop culture (as both a director and producer), maybe Spielberg wasn’t the right fit to examine these obsessions from a fanboy perspective. (Z. drives around in the DeLorean from the Spielberg-produced “Back to the Future,” for example, and at one point he purchases a “Zemeckis Cube” that allows him to reverse time.) It’s like when a “Saturday Night Live” cast member does a devastating impersonation of a celebrity, and then the real-life celebrity shows up to stand next to the impersonator, effectively killing the joke for all time.

Spielberg is too much of a craftsman not to create at least a little delight, and “Ready Player One” comes alive every so often, whether it’s a band of player-less instruments heralding the finding of Halliday’s first key or the chemistry between Sheridan and Cooke in those rare moments that they’re interacting as flesh and blood rather than ones and zeroes.

But overall, the movie left me feeling bombarded with images, bored by the lack of an interesting story, and irritated with my own cultural past. I’ve never been much of a video-game player, but by the finale, I was ready to “Leeroy Jenkins!” my way out of the theater.



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‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix’ Pushed Back to 2019, ‘The New Mutants’ Moves to Next Summer

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Fans will have to wait a lot longer to see Fox’s next movies based on the X-Men franchise as the studio announced Monday that Simon Kinberg’s “X-Men: Dark Phoenix” would move from November 2, 2018 to February 14, 2019.

As a result, the horror-driven X-Men spinoff “The New Mutants” is also moving, from February 22, 2019 to August 2, 2019.

The studio also bumped “The Force,” James Mangold’s adaptation of a Don Winslow novel about a crooked NYC cop, from its release schedule altogether. It had been booked for March 1, 2019.

Also Read: ‘X-Men’ Star Tye Sheridan Teases ‘Dark Phoenix’: ‘More of a Drama Vs a Superhero Film’ (Exclusive Video)

In addition, Fox announced that Bryan Singer’s eagerly awaited Freddie Mercury biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” would hit theaters in the midst of Oscar season, on November 2, instead of its previous Christmas Day release.

Joe Cornish’s medieval epic “The Kid Who Would Be King” moves back two weeks, from February 14, 2019 to March 1.

Fox also announced that Roxann Dawson’s faith-based drama “Breakthrough” starring “This Is Us” star Chrissy Metz will land on April 12, 2019 — one week before the animated feature “Spies in Disguise” that had previously been set for January 18, 2019.

Also Read: Jessica Chastain’s Villain Looks Fierce in ‘Dark Phoenix’ First Look (Photo)

With the move of “Dark Phoenix,” which stars “Game of Thrones” alum Sophie Turner as the telepathic mutant Jean Grey, a.k.a. Phoenix, the studio will be releasing only one “X-Men” movie this year: this summer’s R-rated “Deadpool” sequel.

“Dark Phoenix” will also star Jennifer Lawrence, Jessica Chastain, Michael Fassbender, Olivia Munn, James McAvoy, Tye Sheridan, Nicholas Hoult, Evan Peters and Alexandra Shipp.

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Steven Spielberg finds fun and maybe even a soul in the pandering pastiche of Ready Player One

Read on: The A.V. Club.

Is it possible for a Hollywood blockbuster to look both soulful and soulless, depending on where the light strikes its gleaming surfaces? Ready Player One, based on the bestseller of the same name, is a pandering, crassly commercial victory of intellectual property law that’s also, in its best moments, a grand popcorn…

Read more…

‘Friday’s Child’ Filmmaker & Cast Tackle The Issue Of Foster Care Through A Visionary Lens — SXSW

Read on: Deadline.

Actor Tye Sheridan is doing double duty at SXSW. Many might be pressing start for his role in the festival’s surprise screening of Ready Player One, but his other film, Friday’s Child directed by A.J. Edwards speaks more to the independent bend of the film fest with a story that focuses on a Sheridan’s Richie, an 18-year-old fresh out of foster care who becomes  a young drifter that turns to petty crime to survive and discovers an impossible love in an unlikely friend…

SXSW Film Review: ‘Ready Player One’

Read on: Variety.

In “Ready Player One,” Steven Spielberg’s dizzyingly propulsive virtual-reality fanboy geek-out, Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan), a teenager living in a dystopian trailer park in the year 2045, spends most of his time strapping on a headset and immersing himself in the OASIS, a techie surrealist theme park of the senses. Once inside, you never know […]

‘X-Men’ Star Tye Sheridan Says ‘Dark Phoenix’ Will Be ‘More of a Drama Versus a Superhero Film’ (Exclusive Video)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Tye Sheridan, who stars as Scott Summers a.k.a. Cyclops in the the upcoming “X-Men” film “Dark Phoenix,” teased the movie as “more of a drama versus a superhero film.”

“Jean goes crazy in the movie,” Sheridan told TheWrap at SXSW while discussing his other new film, “Friday’s Child.” “Well, Cyclops doesn’t think she’s going crazy; Cyclops just thinks she’s gotta work some stuff out. It’s interesting, the drama in the movie. We treated this movie as much more of a drama versus a superhero film.”

In an Entertainment Weekly article from December, Jennifer Lawrence, who stars as Raven/Mystique, said she would definitely call “Dark Phoenix” a “drama.”

See Photo: Jessica Chastain’s Villain Looks Fierce in ‘Dark Phoenix’ First Look

“We have really great action scenes and we go to space like within the first five minutes of the movie,” she explained. “So it’s definitely exciting but emotionally all these characters are taking the biggest, most extreme dives than they have in the whole series.”

Sophie Turner, who plays Jean Grey a.k.a. Phoenix, also promised in a recent interview with Empire that the film was being revolutionized and that they wanted to create a “whole new genre of superhero movie.”

Sheridan took on the role of Cyclops in 2016’s “X-Men: Apocalypse” and will reprise it in “Dark Phoenix.” The role of Cyclops was previously played by James Marsden in “X-Men,” “X-Men 2,” “X-Men: The Last Stand” and “X-Men: Days of Future Past.” In “X-Men Origins: Wolverine,” Tim Pocock played Scott Summers.

Also Read: Evan Peters Returns as Quicksilver in ‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix’

“Dark Phoenix” will also star Jessica Chastain, Michael Fassbender, Olivia Munn, James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult, Evan Peters and Alexandra Shipp. Simon Kinberg, who also produced three “X-Men” films, directed.

Sheridan was at SXSW Film Festival to promote his film “Friday’s Child,” directed by A.J. Edwards. Both “Friday’s Child” and Sheridan’s upcoming film “Ready Player One,” are having their world premieres on Sunday in Austin.

“Dark Phoenix” hits theaters Nov. 2.

Watch the video above.

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