Thursday, September 29, 2016


Press release

She’s back! Watch the newly released announcement trailer of New Line Cinema's “Annabelle: Creation (Read my non-spoiler review)”. The horror thriller is scheduled to scare Philippine audiences when it opens here on August 23, 2017.
Photo credit: Warner Bros.

From New Line Cinema comes “Annabelle 2,” with David F. Sandberg (“Lights Out”) helming the follow up to 2014’s hugely successful “Annabelle,” which scared up nearly $257 million at the worldwide box office during its run in theaters. The new film is once again being produced by Peter Safran and James Wan, who also partnered so effectively on “The Conjuring” movies.

In “Annabelle 2,” several years after the tragic death of their little girl, a dollmaker and his wife welcome a nun and several girls from a shuttered orphanage into their home, soon becoming the target of the dollmaker’s possessed creation, Annabelle.

Sandberg directs from a screenplay by Gary Dauberman, who also wrote “Annabelle.” The film stars Stephanie Sigman (“Spectre”), Talitha Bateman (“The 5th Wave”), Lulu Wilson (upcoming “Ouija: Origin of Evil”), Philippa Anne Coulthard (“After the Dark”), Grace Fulton (“Badland”), Lou Lou Safran (“The Choice”), Samara Lee (“Fox Catcher,” “The Last Witch Hunter”), Tayler Buck in her feature film debut, with Anthony LaPaglia (TV’s “Without a Trace”) and Miranda Otto (Showtime’s “Homeland,” “The Lord of the Rings” Trilogy).

Collaborating with Sandberg behind-the-scenes from his “Lights Out” team are production designer Jennifer Spence and editor Michel Aller, joined by director of photography Maxime Alexandre (“The Other Side of the Door”) and costume designer Leah Butler (“Paranormal Activity 3 & 4”).

“Annabelle: Creation” is a New Line Cinema presentation, an Atomic Monster/Safran Company production. The film will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


Press release

Starring opposite Tom Hanks in Columbia Pictures' new suspense thriller “Inferno” is Academy Award® nominated actress Felicity Jones (“The Theory of Everything,” upcoming “Rogue One”) as Dr. Sienna Brooks.
Photos courtesy of Columbia Pictures/UIP

Academy Award® winner Ron Howard returns to direct the latest bestseller in Dan Brown's billion-dollar Robert Langdon series, “Inferno,” which finds the famous symbologist on a trail of clues tied to the great Dante himself. When Langdon wakes up in an Italian hospital with amnesia, he teams up with Sienna Brooks, a doctor he hopes will help him recover his memories. Together, they race across Europe and against the clock to stop a madman from unleashing a global virus that would wipe out half of the world's population.

For Jones, there is more to her character than meets the eye. "Sienna is a young woman who is a strong environmentalist, full of conviction. She is not everything she seems but on the surface she is someone that gets involved in a mystery relating to finding a deadly virus."

That is one of the aspects that drew Jones to the role, she says: “This is really a contemporary story about paranoia, fear of governments, and who we can trust.”
Scene from The Theory of Everything.

“There’s a lot of fun in it, in that they’re going on this quest, they’re finding clues, but at the same time, there is a seriousness and there is a philosophical side to the film,” adds Jones.

“And it’s addressing very pertinent issues about what is the state of the world that we’re living in and how do we contribute to making that world as good as it can be for future generations,” continues Jones. “I feel like, increasingly with global warming, we’re forced to address how we are living, and ask are we living in a way that is sustainable? I am absolutely pro making sure we do everything to leave the planet in as green a state as possible.”

For inspiration in playing her character, Jones says she went straight to the source material. “When I knew I had the part of Sienna, I read Dan Brown’s book – it was a really fun read,” she recalls. “Throughout filming, I would keep coming back to the book for Sienna and find little clues about her backstory that I could use in playing her. The books was a really good resource throughout filming.”

Working with Hanks and Howard, both Oscar winners who make up a formidable creative team, was a delight, Jones shares. “They have a huge affection for each other. They have this shorthand and they are both on the same page creatively. It’s what I would hope to do later in my career – to work with the same people and build up a shorthand. It’s like any creative endeavour, if you work with the same people, you actually save a lot of time because you’re not trying to establish a new relationship.”

Opening across the Philippines on Oct. 12, “Inferno” is distributed by Columbia Pictures in the Philippines, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016


Press release

Multi-talented actors Zach Galifianakis, Jon Hamm, Isla Fisher and Gal Gadot join forces in the explosive sexy action comedy “Keeping Up With the Joneses.”

                Zach Galifianakis, best known for his breakout role in the “Hangover” film series pairs up with the versatile Isla Fisher (known for her roles in “Confessions of a Shopaholic” and “Now You See Me”) as husband and wife - Jeff and Karen Gaffney, a suburban couple living an ideal quiet life, until they their new neighbours moved in, the Joneses.  The Joneses, played by Gal Gadot aka Wonder Woman and award-wining Jon Hamm (Mad Men tv series) are secret government agents in the movie. The Joneses are camouflaged as a glamorous, sophisticated, picture-perfect couple who rocked the Gaffney’s world on the first day they moved into the neighborhood. 

                After the initial meet-and-greet, the Gaffneys and the Joneses form a special bond, but Karen soon notices there is something odd with the Joneses.  With Karen’s prodding, she convinces Jeff to spy on the couple’s house while they’re away.  Only to find out that the Joneses are spies!  Soon, the Gaffneys are embroiled into the dizzying and dangerous world of espionage so much that they realize it’s not easy keeping up with the Joneses.

                The great chemistry between Galifianakis and Hamm in the movie as good friends is rooted from a real off-cam friendship. “I've known Jon, I've known Jon before Jon was truly Jon Hamm, and he's a comedy guy. He's really funny, you know. A lot of leading type guys like that, they don't have humor. They think they do, but they don't.  It's almost unfair that he can do both. It's really frustrating because I'm certainly not going to be a, no one is ever going to go, 'You know, Zach does handsome really well.' So, Jon, he just is funny, and he's funny like a comedian is funny, you know, not, 'Look, an actor is funny.' He's funny, and so Jon and I had this, just a friendship, and I'd hoped we'd work together.  I think Jon and I got together over the last couple years and we talked about a couple of things that, and then this kind of happened and I'm glad that it did. It seemed like a good fit,” shares Zach from his recent interviews for the movie.

                “Keeping Up with the Joneses” opens October 19 in cinemas nationwide from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.

Monday, September 26, 2016

HOOQ Hangouts with Pinoy Rom-Coms

Before, I never watch local movies because I don’t find anything interesting because I was still a kid. As an adult now, I have an appreciation on selected titles if not few. But I am learning to appreciate local movies if not all of it.
Despite the Friday heavy traffic, it didn't stop the people from going here

As a movie reviewer for my blog, I only get to watch movies as long as I get invited to blocked screenings or premieres. Watching movies in cinemas is expensive and I only get to watch most at a cable movie channel. I don’t download pirated or original because I still believe that watching a movie inside the cinema is still the best.
Even the main actor attended

Most of my movie invites are mostly from big U.S. distributors so most of my reviews are Hollywood movies and I rarely get invites for local movies even if I wanted to. That is why I get to watch HOOQ Hangouts because they not only show my favourite TV series but also Pinoy movies that I missed. Recently, I’ve seen Every Breath You Take starring Piolo Pascual and Angelica Panganiban.

It was in Pinoy movies like these that I am able to compare Rom-Coms (romantic comedies) to American movies because the writers nowadays have good materials for the local movies. EBYT is no exception. It has comedy and love story but it also have drama moments.

I can’t wait to watch another movie or series next month. For the next HOOQ Hangout, follow this blog and like L.E.N.S. blogs on Facebook. Thanks to HOOQ and Globe for hosting this event.

Sunday, September 25, 2016


Press release

  Enigmatic actress Eva Green who starred in blockbuster testosterone-filled movies such as “Kingdom of Heaven,” “300: Rise of an Empire” and “Casino Royale” takes lead role in “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.”
Photo courtesy of 20th Century Fox
                “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” is based upon the debut novel by Ransom Riggs, published in 2011,  an instant global hit and topped The New York Times best-seller list selling more than 3.1 million copies. A sequel, “Hollow City,” was published in 2014, followed by the final book in the trilogy, “Library of Souls.” 

                The book and movie’s heroine, Miss Peregrine is the protector of the Peculiars. Green, on her titular role calls her character “a kind of dark Mary Poppins-like figure who is rather eccentric and fearless, and who wields a deadly crossbow to protect her Peculiars.  Her peculiarity is being an ymbrine, meaning she can manipulate time and take the form of a bird.  Miss Peregrine, along with other ymbrines, uses this ability to create a time “loop,” in which she and the children live within a single day that repeats over and over again. This protects them from the evils of the world that exist outside the loop.

                Miss Peregrine is an intriguing and sometimes mysterious character, capable of being a maternal figure to her young charges, as well as a fearsome opponent to those who threaten them.  Her children are her life, and Miss Peregrine will do anything for them.  She’s a ballsy character and a warrior. 

                “Miss Peregrine runs the home for the peculiar children, and she protects them from the outside world, from those monsters that eat children – they’re called Hollowgasts in the movie – and she will do anything to protect them,” explains Eva Green. 

                “She will risk her life and she will kill. And she is peculiar herself. She can transform herself into a bird. It’s quite complicated! She has this peculiarity as well, to manipulate time, so that the last 24 hours can be lived again. So every night she has that ritual of resetting the time,” adds Green.

                Eva further says that at the heart of the film is a very powerful message. “I think in the outside world, these abilities would be seen as a handicap and these children would be persecuted because of that.   But on this island, they’re kind of celebrated for being so unique, and the message in the film, for children as well as adults, it’s just, ‘be yourself, no matter how strange you are.’”

                And Burton, she adds, is the perfect director to deliver that message in a stunningly original cinematic way. “That’s what Tim does best. I feel like he understands the hearts of outcasts, and he celebrates them. It’s beautiful.”

                For the director himself, the ‘peculiars’ are outcasts because of who they are – is a theme that he related to instantly. “Obviously the superhero genre is alive and well, but with this I never quite saw it that way. I always felt this was a more human version of that kind of thing, and I always saw it as less of a superpower and more of an affliction,” he says. “It was a much more down-to-earth human level to me that I was attracted to.

                “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” will open September 28 in cinemas nationwide (also in 3D) from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros. 

Saturday, September 24, 2016


Press release

 Ice Cube and Charlie Day star as high school teachers prepared to solve their differences the hard way in New Line Cinema’s comedy “Fist Fight,” directed by Richie Keen (“It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”).
            Watch “Fist Fight” when it opens across the Philippines on February 22, 2017.

On the last day of the year, mild-mannered high school English teacher Andy Campbell (Day) is trying his best to keep it together amidst senior pranks, a dysfunctional administration and budget cuts that put jobs on the line.  But things go from bad to worse when he accidentally crosses his much tougher and deeply feared colleague, Ron Strickland (Ice Cube), who challenges Campbell to an old-fashioned throw down after school.  News of the fight spreads like wildfire and ends up becoming the very thing this school, and Campbell, needed.

“Fist Fight” also stars Tracy Morgan (“30 Rock”), Jillian Bell (“22 Jump Street”), Dean Norris (“Breaking Bad”), Christina Hendricks (“Mad Men”), Dennis Haysbert (“The Unit”), JoAnna Garcia Swisher (“The Astronaut Wives Club”). 
Keen directs from a screenplay by Van Robichaux & Evan Susser (Funny or Die’s “What’s Going On? With Mike Mitchell”), story by Van Robichaux & Evan Susser and Max Greenfield.   “Fist Fight” is produced by Shawn Levy, Max Greenfield, John Rickard, and Dan Cohen.  Serving as executive producers are Toby Emmerich, Richard Brener, Samuel J. Brown, Dave Neustadter, Charlie Day, Ice Cube, Marty P. Ewing, Billy Rosenberg, and Bruce Berman.

            New Line Cinema presents, in association with Village Roadshow Pictures, a 21 Laps/Wrigley Pictures production: “Fist Fight.”  The film will be distributed in the Philippines by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

Friday, September 23, 2016

The Next HOOQ Hangout happens tonight

After enjoying my first HOOQ Hangout with Legends Of Tomorrow, I am now going tonight at the Amphitheater, High Street, BGC to view a local movie Every Breath U Take starring Piolo Pascual and Angelica Panganiban.

Tonight's Hangout is brought to you by HOOQ, Globe and Samsung. For more hangouts, follow this blog.

Thursday, September 22, 2016


Press release

Ayala Malls Cinemas opens its screens at Glorietta 4 and Trinoma for the first edition of German Film Week on September 22 – 27, presented by the Goethe-Institut Philippinen.

                The German Film Week 2016, marks the first all-German film event in the Philippines in recent years. Opening the event is the premiere of “Who Am I -- No System Is Safe” (Who Am I -- Kein System ist sicher) by director Baran bo Odar on September 21 at Glorietta 4 cinemas, Ayala Center, Makati City.  The film is about a gifted hacker who only feels at home in the virtual reality who finds an opportunity to demonstrate his talent to a wider audience.

                Regular screenings will follow from September 22 to 27 at Glorietta 4 and Trinoma cinemas. The Film Week is comprised of 13 hand-picked features released in Germany in the last two years. Tickets are priced at P100 and are available via or at the cinema counters.

                Also featured in the festival are the Emma Watson starrer “The Colony,” with other highly acclaimed films “24 Weeks,” “As We Were Dreaming,” “The Dark Side of the Moon,” “Head Full of Honey,” “Hördur: Between the Worlds,” “I’m Off Then,” “Labyrinth of Lies,” “Stations of the Cross,” “Meteor Street,” “Rough Road Ahead” and “Wild.”

                The German Film Week 2016 is made possible by the support of the Film Development Council of the Philippines and Ayala Malls Cinemas. For details, visit the Goethe Web site.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016


Press release


“Hidden Figures” tells the remarkable story of three brilliant women who accomplished the extraordinary against all odds. During the turbulent 60s, battling discrimination at home and in the workplace, Katherine Johnson, (Golden Globe winner and Emmy nominated Taraji P. Henson) Dorothy Vaughan (Oscar winner Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Grammy nominated Janelle Monáe), all stellar mathematicians, were undeterred in their pursuit of academic excellence. Instrumental in helping America to eventually win the space race, they broke down barriers, laying the groundwork for future generations.  
Photo credits: 20th Century Fox

                Oscar winner, Kevin Costner, plays their supervisor at NASA. The exciting and engrossing film was directed by Ted Melfi and features a strong supporting cast, including Kirsten Dunst and Jim Parsons. The movie’s powerful score from multiple Grammy winning musician/composer Pharrell Williams.

                Discover the inspiring story of the momentous impact of these women on rocket science during the explosive 60s in America when “Hidden Figures” opens January 2017 in cinemas nationwide from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016


Press release

Anna Kendrick, Zac Efron, Adam DeVine and Aubrey Plaza star as the troublesome quartet in the upcoming adult romantic comedy, “Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates” where boys meet girls by accident (literally!).
Photo credit: 20th Century Fox
                The R-rated movie “Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates,” where DeVine and Efron take on the titular roles, are warned by their family to smarten-up their hard-partying ways before their sister’s wedding in Hawaii, and to bring two respectable girls as dates. After posting an ad on Craigslist, they’re contacted by a cadre of prospective suitors, and they ultimately settle on Alice (Kendrick) and Tatiana (Plaza), whose interest in Adam and Dave extends to little more than the prospect of a free holiday on the islands.

                The film is based on a true story – though the real Mike and Dave sensibly decided not to bring dates from Craigslist in the end.  The motion picture takes the intriguing idea of two brothers finding dates for a wedding and runs with it, adding unexpected layers of heart and two outrageous new lead characters.  Mike and Dave have reassured their sister and parents that they’ve got the wedding wired.  There will be no craziness, stunts, mischief, trampolines (don’t ask!) or fireworks.   They’ve found the perfect dates to keep things under control.

                 “The dates, Tatiana and Alice, were fun to write because they’re balls-out,” says scribe Cohen.  “They’re pretty intense, crazy, down-on-their-luck, tough chicks who decide they need a break and, after hearing about Mike and Dave’s ad, they transform themselves into nice, sweet, respectable-looking women.  But as soon as they arrive in Hawaii, they go into extreme party-mode and start ruining things.”

                Mike and Dave certainly know how to rock a room, but they’re small-timers compared to their dates.  As background to Alice and Tatiana, Szymanski observes that they “have a history of misadventures that have taken them around the world.   They can travel around the globe with only a couple of backpacks, and have stories to tell for ages.”

                When we meet Alice, she is heartbroken, having been left at the altar.  “So a wedding is about the last place she should be,” says Anna Kendrick, “and her downward spiral continues.”  Alice’s coping mechanism:  alcohol.  At her core, Alice is somewhat innocent.   “It’s nice play such a naïve character,” adds Kendrick.  “And Zac’s character, Dave, is just as innocent.  A surprising kind of gentle comedy comes out of that double-naivety.”

                Aubrey Plaza describes Alice’s cohort Tatiana as a founding member of the Bad Girls Club.  She’s a tough bitch from Philadelphia who doesn’t take s*** from anyone.  Tatiana likes to party and go on adventures.  She is the Alpha in any group.”    Underneath that tough exterior, though, are some soft and chewy feelings about her pal Alice.  “Tatiana wants to help her best friend get her groove back after she’s gone through a really bad breakup,” offers Plaza.  “Mike and Dave’s ad for dates to their sister’s destination wedding is a chance for a free vacay, to party endlessly and get that groove back.”

                As for the brothers, whatever their differences, Mike and Dave are tight.  “They have a symbiotic relationship,” says Efron.  “They can’t exist without one another.  They’re as much best friends as they are brothers.”

Monday, September 19, 2016


Press release

 Evil is stronger in the latest hysteria movie “Blair Witch” – twenty years after the first movie of the same title erupted in cinemas and had the audience going home in fear.  Now, in this year’s “Blair Witch” movie that will open September 14 in cinemas (Phils.), after James’ sister disappeared into the forest in Maryland, James (played by Allen McCune) treks the same woods to uncover what lies in the thickness and darkness of the woods that took his sister.
Allen Mcune
                Along with James are his friends Peter (“Wreck-It-Ralph’s” Brandon Scott), Ashley (Corbin Reid of TV’s “Disney Star Darlings”) and film student Lisa (Callie Hernandez of upcoming “La La Land and Ridley Scott’s upcoming “Alien: Covenant) venture into the same woods each with a camera to uncover the mysteries surrounding their disappearance.

                To hold true to the Blair Witch mythos, screenwriter Simon Barrett familiarized himself with every hint of information the first film contains, from old message boards and Facebook groups to graphic novels and young adult books published only in Europe.

                “The mythology was a huge enticement for me because the first film never really explained anything,” says Barrett. “We wanted to take the mythos further and explore how outsiders approach the haunting and how locals see the legend.”

                Still, the first film is not required viewing to enjoy the sequel. “If you have seen the original, you’ll find even deeper layers and levels here to appreciate and debate once it’s over,” says producer Steven Schneider. “If you haven’t seen the original movie, this one will frighten the hell out of you regardless.”

                Shot over 32 days in Vancouver and British Columbia, the filmmakers strived to capture the authentic spirit of The Blair Witch Project, while again pushing the boundaries of found footage films.  While much of the fear behind the first Blair Witch relied on what wasn’t shown, the sequel terrifies audiences and excites hardcore fans by revealing more of what lurks after dark.

                To create a nonstop thrill ride, filmmakers swapped the first film’s 16-mm. black-and-white camera for discrete head cams and a drone. Directed by Adam Wingard, using photos from the original Blair Witch set, the filmmakers also painstakingly recreated the house in the first film, brick for brick.  “The original filmmakers were blown away by returning to that universe because we immaculately recreated the house and in particular the basement,” says producer Keith Calder.  “I don’t think they were expecting that level of detail.”

                For several years, Lionsgate had been searching for the right concept to reboot Blair Witch, as well as filmmakers who could satisfy the fans of the first film and reach a new generation of moviegoers.  Following the success of V/H/S and the company’s acquisition of Adam Wingard and Barrett’s independent horror movie “You’re Next,” Lionsgate set up a secret meeting with the duo to pitch the sequel.  

                “Adam and Simon have already proven beyond any doubt that they’re the real deal when it comes to delivering tension and scares — and overall compelling storytelling — making them ideal candidates to take on a project as ambitious and complex as this one,” says producer Roy Lee.

Sunday, September 18, 2016


 Based on true events, academy award nominee Mark Wahlberg stars in “Deepwater Horizon,” an edge-of-your-seat drama that chronicles the last few hours of the men and women working in the most technically advanced oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico.  

                The Deepwater Horizon is an ultra-deep-water, advanced oil rig owned by the Swiss company Transocean and leased by British Petroleum that exploded on April 20, 2010, making it one of the largest man-made disasters recorded in history.   The ultra deep-water drilling rig off the Louisiana coast – the Deepwater Horizon – riveted the world on that fateful day as it experienced a devastating blowout, fire and nearly unstoppable ocean floor oil leak. For 87 days millions watched, hearts in mouths, as more than 50,000 barrels of oil a day gushed from the sea floor into the Gulf of Mexico. It would become the largest accidental ocean oil spill in human history. The impact to marine life and the questions of what went wrong and why are ongoing.

                The film, “Deepwater Horizon” follows a vital story that many have not seen: the story of the 126 crew members working aboard the Deepwater Horizon that day, caught in the most harrowing circumstances imaginable. They were skilled working men and women putting in a grueling shift in the hopes of getting back soon to families and lives ashore. In an instant, they were faced with their darkest hour, pushed to summon the courage to battle an unstoppable inferno blaze in the middle of the ocean, and when all seemed lost, to save one another.
                Wahlberg takes on the role of real-life Transocean chief electronics technician Mike Williams, a devoted family man who was overseeing the rig’s computers and electrical systems on April 20th, when everything he imagined could go wrong … did. Oil rig workers are a notoriously tough and gritty breed. The work is physically punishing and ultra high-pressure – as workers grapple with complex equipment approximately 60-feet above remote seas. Yet even for Williams, what happened that day was unprecedented. Williams knew the work was desperately behind schedule, but he also knew the Deepwater Horizon had sophisticated defenses said to be able to prevent even the worst blowouts. Nevertheless at 10 p.m. that night, volatile methane shot up into the rig, and all the rig’s defenses failed. The result was a sudden, deadly explosion and a series of fireballs, as the shattered rig and its crew were shaken, hurtled and drenched in combustible gas.  From that moment on, Williams was in a race to save his own life and those of his crewmates – each driven by the hope of making it home -- in an escape that seemed to defy all the odds.
                Wahlberg hopes that unforgettably tense and triumphant moment reminds people of what the costs were that night, for those who made it home and those who didn’t. He concludes: “Like most people at the time this happened, I was only aware of the fact that the Deepwater Horizon was a huge manmade environmental disaster, there is so much people are not aware of about this story and it is so important that it be told.”

                Discover the real earth-shaking story of the “Deepwater Horizon” when it opens on October 5 in cinemas from Pioneer Films. 

                “Deepwater Horizon” also stars a powerhouse cast including Dylan O’ Brien, Kate Hudson, Kurt Russell, John Malkovich and Gina Rodriguez.

Saturday, September 17, 2016


Press release

Best known for his portrayal of Dr. Derek Shepherd on the hit series “Grey’s Anatomy,” Patrick Dempsey now stars as the dashing American internet mogul Jack Qwant in Universal Pictures' new romantic comedy “Bridget Jones's Baby (see review here).
Photo courtesy of UIP

Also starring Renee Zellweger and Colin Firth, the new film in the beloved comedy series finds Bridget Jones (Zellweger) unexpectedly expecting, but with one hitch: Bridget’s uncertain if the baby’s father is her longtime love Mark Darcy (Firth)…or the newfound one Jack Qwant from just across the pond.

The pattern of the last two Bridget Jones films followed the premise that in love there is a choice between a good guy and bad guy disguised as a good guy, with Bridget invariably making the wrong choice. “We invented Jack as an American in a very English setting. He’s charming, funny and very American,” says director Sharon Maguire. “He’s found the algorithm for love, and thinks he knows what works when it comes to love. He and Bridget match up 97 percent, so they should be together, whereas Bridget and Mark match up only 8 percent.”

“Whatever we think about either of these guys, Jack’s actually a lovely guy,” offers Firth. “We may not like algorithms for love and the way he goes about what he does, but he’s charming, adores Bridget and he seems to like Mark. This is quite infuriating: to have as an adversary someone that you can’t bust on having terrible ulterior motives.”

Dempsey’s name had always been in the mix for Jack, having first come to the producer’s attention as Dr Derek Shepherd on “Grey’s Anatomy.” “Patrick was the choice very early on, because he’s a credible alternative,” says producer Debra Hayward. “He’s the right age, devastatingly handsome and he’s American, all of which rings the changes from Daniel. We wanted it to be someone different but somebody equally gorgeous, and he’s a great actor. He’s an American equivalent to Colin.”

So, all roads led to Dempsey for Jack, but it was the race track that potentially jeopardized his being able to board the project, because Dempsey was in the middle of a racing season (his other job is racing driver). “I was right in the middle of a season racing,” explains Dempsey. “So we had to work around the race dates to make it possible for me to do the film. It’s the first production that’s ever worked around my race dates! The first race with this contract, I ended up winning in Japan, so it was a good omen.”

In much the same way that Jack is the new character on an established scene, similarly Dempsey was coming into a dynamic that was long established. “I’m the new kid on the block. I was very nervous because they’ve had all this experience together and have a dialogue and a relationship that works well. That’s what Jack brings into this dynamic; he’s stirring it all up in many ways.”

“Patrick is lovely as Jack,” enthuses Zellweger. “He is dashing and handsome and charming and he’s funny and naughty and fun, like the Daniel Cleaver character. Still, he is the polar opposite of Daniel in so many other respects.”

“Darcy’s the quintessential English one, and Jack is the quintessential American,” says Dempsey. “It’s been fun trying to find that. How we make these characters sympathetic, vulnerable, but yet strong at the same time, and what their wants and aspirations are for Bridget and for the baby. While the other characters are much more established, for Jack it’s been a case of finding that out as we go along.”

“Bridget Jones' Baby” (now showing only in cinemas) is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

Friday, September 16, 2016


Press release

Emmy Award-winners Jennifer Aniston (“We're the Millers”) and Ty Burrell (TV's “Modern Family”) lend their voices to Sarah and Henry Gardner, loving but workaholic parents, in Warner Bros. Pictures' new comedy adventure “Storks” (in cinemas Thursday, Sept. 22).
Photos courtesy of Warner Bros.

Ty Burrell says of their characters, “They’ve kind of lost touch with their young son, Nate. They’re so consumed with their careers, trying to make hay while the sun shines, that they’re missing out on his childhood.”
“The story is so original and moving, but funny at the same time,” adds Aniston.

In the film, young Nate wants a little brother. So, being the smart, self-motivated type, he finds an old brochure from the days when storks still delivered babies, and submits a formal request. “In our movie, getting a baby is a lot like writing a letter to Santa Claus, except that you send it to Stork Mountain,” says director Doug Sweetland.

As luck would have it, Nate’s order reaches the facility – and he just might get his cherished wish.

Sarah and Henry Gardner are devoted and protective parents who run a real estate business from their kitchen table. Like lots of working couples trying to make a comfortable home for their child, their hearts are in the right place. But their eyes and ears are usually welded to mobile devices so they never miss a call, never lose a client. It’s a competitive world.
This leaves Nate, voiced by young actor Anton Starkman, pretty much alone most of the time. Says director Doug Sweetland, “Nate is a cute, bright, very imaginative boy, the only child of parents who maybe work too much. They work from home so in theory they’re right there all the time, yet they’re not really there for him.”

“I have kids, so animated films are always a draw for me, especially smart ones that you want your kids to watch, and you know are going to make you laugh,” says Burrell. “I think ‘Storks’ carries on the tradition of really good animated features by telling a meaningful story that’s genuinely funny. I really love it.”

As for getting into his role, the actor jokes, “I think that for better or worse, and however unflattering that might be, I just sound like a dad. So, no, I didn’t get a lot of notes on that.”

If some moviegoers see a little bit of themselves in the Gardners, they may also see themselves in the transformation Sarah and Henry undergo after they realize Nate has taken matters into his own hands by posting his request to Stork Mountain. Though they don’t believe for a minute that his order for a sibling will be processed, they can’t resist being drawn into Nate’s excitement as he begins retrofitting the house for the big delivery.

Concludes Burrell, “It’s impossible to describe how deeply you fall in love with your kids and how much of a sense of responsibility you have for them. But also how you can pretty regularly screw up. And I think that’s also what the story is getting at, a little – that they’re not perfect parents, but that it’s not too late. There’s still time to reverse course.”

“Storks” is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

Thursday, September 15, 2016


Press release

Ayala Malls Cinemas brings the prestigious Asia On Screen Film Festival at Greenbelt 3 from September 15 – 18. Asia On Screen is Manila’s premier Asian film festival featuring award-wining and critically-acclaimed films. Now on its 3rd year, Asia On Screen 2016 will showcase 13 films representing 11 Asian countries. With the burgeoning of the film industries across Asia, the world of arts and cinema and entertainment in Asia has never been more exciting.

                Participating countries include: Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

                The festival brings the best of a broad selection of Asia Pacific cinema in order to draw greater recognition to the region's wealth of talented actors and filmmakers. Moviegoers will be transported around the region through stories of forbidden love, to coming of age teenage dramas, to incredible stories of survival and epic historical tales.

                It will showcase a vibrant line-up which includes Tanna (Australia), A Tale of Three Cities (China), Airlift (India), In the Absence of the Sun (Indonesia), Miss Hokusai (Japan), Frontline (Korea), The Journey (Malaysia), Above the Clouds (Philippines), Taklub (Philippines), 7 Letters (Singapore), Teacher’s Diary (Thailand), Heart Attack (Thailand), and On the Peaceful Peak (Vietnam).

                This year, the film fest opened with Above the Clouds. Capturing the breath-taking highlands of the Ifugao region, the film is an emotional journey towards transformation and deliverance.

                According to Asia Society Philippines Executive Director, Suyin Liu Lee, “Asia Society Philippines presents Asia on Screen as a creative and visceral form of fulfilling its mission of fostering relationships among peoples and countries. To quote famed Asian Director, Ang Lee. “I see a movie as a way of learning about the world, about myself, and learning about my relationship with people and art.”

                Tickets will be available on-site at the Greenbelt 3 Cinemas at PHP 100 per screening.  For more information on the schedule of Asia On Screen featured films, go to Ayala Malls Cinemas’ .

Wednesday, September 14, 2016


Press release

 Unapologetically wild and based on a true-to-life ad gone viral, “Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates” hits theatres on September 14 nationwide starring Zac Efron, Adam Devine, Aubrey Plaza and Anna Kendrick.            
Photo courtesy of 20th Century Fox

                In “Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates,” Mike and Dave are brothers (played by Devine and Efron),  warned by their family to smarten-up their hard-partying ways before their sister’s wedding in Hawaii, and to bring two respectable girls as dates. After posting an ad on Craigslist, they’re contacted by a cadre of prospective suitors, and they ultimately settle on Alice (Kendrick) and Tatiana (Plaza), whose interest in Adam and Dave extends to little more than the prospect of a free holiday on the islands.  But the girls they finally chose, aren’t quite as wholesome as they expect. And as the real Stangles explain, some artistic license has been taken to turn the film into this year’s hottest comedy.

                The other woman in the boys’ life is, of course, their sister Jeanie (Sugar Lyn Beard), whose Hawaiian wedding provides the backdrop for the unexpected girls-gone wild / dates-gone-horribly-wrong hijinks.   But Jeanie’s big day is also ground zero for the guys’ determination that Jeanie be happy—no matter how crazy things get. 

                “Mike and Dave are party boys with good intentions,” Beard shares of her onscreen brothers.  “Jeanie was like that, too, when she was growing up with them.  They’ve protected Jeanie her entire life, but now there’s a new man in her life, her fiancé Eric, and he brings out her sweeter side.”

                A special massage brings out yet another side of Jeanie.  Having been accidently mauled by an ATV driven by…who else?...Mike,  Jeanie is ready for some serious rest and relaxation.  A nice massage seems like the perfect idea, but Alice has something a little more potent in mind for Jeanie.  She makes arrangements with the masseur, Keanu, for him to go the extra mile. 

                Beard says filming the scene was a highlight for her—not only of the film, “but of my life!” she exclaims with a laugh.  “My bare butt was exposed for almost an entire day’s shooting, and I was being used like a slip ‘n slide.  The scene was a little sweaty, a little oily, but all great.   I was laughing so hard, which was interesting because Jeanie is getting so much pleasure out of the massage, that all the shaking of my body from laughter kind of worked for the scene.”

                The brothers are determined not to screw up their sister Jeanie’s destination wedding.  “Mike and Dave love Jeanie and Jeanie loves them, as well,” director Jake Szymanski continues.  “She just wants her special day to go without a hitch.”

                “Mike and Dave adore their sister,” confirms Efron.  “Their mantra is: ‘We’re doin’ it for Jeanie!  Everything we do is for Jeanie!’  They protect and love her and have put her on a pedestal.  She forgives them for all the mischief they do.”

                “Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates” is now showing in cinemas nationwide from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.