Justin Timberlake plays voice talent, music producer for ‘Trolls’

Multi-talented actor and musician, Justin Timberlake who has won nine Grammys and numerous other awards leads an impressive voice cast and serves as executive music producer in the movie for all ages – “Trolls.”

Timberlake is in charge of the upbeat music of “Trolls” and has combined classics from Earth Wind & Fire, Simon & Garfunkel, Gorillaz and Cyndi Lauper, with original songs he wrote for the film, including the number one hit song ‘Can’t Stop the Feeling!’. Also starring in the film are Anna Kendrick, James Corden, Gwen Stefani, Zooey Deschanel and Russell Brand.

“Trolls” can be enjoyed by youngsters as a unique world rich with unforgettable characters, music, humor, adventure and color; as well as by adults, for whom the film’s overarching theme of the search for happiness will resonate long after the end credits have rolled.

Indeed, the Trolls’ all-singing, all-dancing, all-hugging world is all about happiness, which infuses every frame of the film. “Trolls” explores how we treat others and, more importantly, how we treat ourselves. Its emotion-charged message is that happiness comes from within, and can be a powerful and infectious force when it’s spread.

With Justin’s Branch character, long after the Trolls’ liberation from Bergen captivity, he was the only one who continued to see the Bergens as a threat, but no one in town believed him. Branch lives a discontented existence and is constantly preparing for the worst. He’s lost his sense of joy and is flummoxed by the over-the-top positivity of the other Trolls. Branch often wonders if he is the only sane Troll left. Over the course of the film, he is challenged to let go of his past, even if that includes a dreaded burst of singing, dancing and hugging.

Branch represents our fears and how they can envelop us and prevent our inner happiness from blossoming. Ever vigilant, he is consumed with exploring potential dangers and spends his life bracing for the worst instead of enjoying the present. While some of his concerns are well-founded because there are very real dangers nearby, Branch must learn he has to keep living his life and not let fear win.

“Branch isn’t much of a people person,” notes Justin Timberlake. “He doesn’t sing, dance or hug, which makes him somewhat of an outcast—by his own choice—in the Troll community. He’s a hardcore survivalist and a huge contrast to all the other Trolls. He doesn’t connect with anybody,” Timberlake continues.

Citing the character’s relatability, despite—or maybe, thanks to—his persistent negativity, Timberlake jokes that, “Branch is going to be the voice of every dad who sees Trolls.”

“Can’t Stop the Feeling,” written by Timberlake, Martin and Shellback, is a celebratory anthem that brings the Trolls and Bergens together. The song is performed by Timberlake, Deschanel, Funches, Mintz-Plasse, Kendrick, Corden, Icona Pop, Stefani, Nayyar, and a chorus. “It’s full of optimism, which carried over to its creation,” notes Timberlake, adding, “Writing it actually made me feel happy.” Director Mike Mitchell adds that the song “sums up everything we wanted to do with the film. It creates happiness when you hear it.

“Trolls” opens November 2 in cinemas (also in 3D screens) nationwide from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.

‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ launches IMAX poster

Warner Bros. Pictures has just launched the IMAX poster for its new fantasy adventure “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” The film opens in IMAX theaters and regular cinemas across the Philippines on Thursday, Nov. 17th.

“Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” takes us to a new era in J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World, decades before Harry Potter and half a world away.

Academy Award winner Eddie Redmayne stars in the central role of Magizoologist Newt Scamander, under the direction of David Yates, who helmed the last four “Harry Potter” blockbusters.

There are growing dangers in the wizarding world of 1926 New York. Something mysterious is leaving a path of destruction in the streets, threatening to expose the wizarding community to the Second Salemers, a fanatical faction of No-Majs (American for Muggles) bent on eradicating them. And the powerful, dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald, after wreaking havoc in Europe, has slipped away…and is now nowhere to be found.

Unaware of the rising tensions, Newt Scamander arrives in the city nearing the end of a global excursion to research and rescue magical creatures, some of which are safeguarded in the magical hidden dimensions of his deceptively nondescript leather case. But potential disaster strikes when unsuspecting No-Maj Jacob Kowalski inadvertently lets some of Newt’s beasts loose in a city already on edge—a serious breach of the Statute of Secrecy that former Auror Tina Goldstein jumps on, seeing her chance to regain her post as an investigator. However, things take an ominous turn when Percival Graves, the enigmatic Director of Magical Security at MACUSA (Magical Congress of the United States of America), casts his suspicions on both Newt…and Tina.

Now allied, Newt and Tina, together with Tina’s sister, Queenie, and their new No-Maj friend, Jacob, form a band of unlikely heroes, who must recover Newt’s missing beasts before they come to harm. But the stakes are higher than these four outsiders—now branded fugitives—ever imagined, as their mission puts them on a collision course with dark forces that could push the wizarding and No-Maj worlds to the brink of war.

“Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” also stars Katherine Waterston as Tina, Tony Award winner Dan Fogler as Jacob, Alison Sudol as Tina’s sister, Queenie, Ezra Miller as Credence, two-time Oscar nominee Samantha Morton as Mary Lou Barebone, Oscar winner Jon Voight as Henry Shaw, Sr., Carmen Ejogo as Seraphina Picquery, and Colin Farrell as Percival Graves.

The film marks the screenwriting debut of J.K. Rowling, whose seven beloved Harry Potter books were adapted into the top-grossing film franchise of all time. Her script was inspired by the Hogwarts textbook Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, written by her character Newt Scamander.

Warner Bros. Pictures presents a Heyday Films Production, a David Yates Film, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” The film will open nationwide November 17, 2016, in 2D and 3D in select theatres and IMAX, and will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

Liam Neeson voices monster in adaptation of children’s novel ‘A Monster Calls’

Liam Neeson, widely known for his role as Bryan Mills in the worldwide blockbuster “Taken” film franchise, will once again surprise the audience with his newfound skills in his latest film “A Monster Calls.”

Based on the award-winning novel of the same title by Patrick Ness, “A Monster Calls” is directed by highly celebrated director J.A. Bayona wherein Neeson stars in the titular role. As the monster, Neeson’s character is seen by 12-year-old Conor O’Malley (Lewis MacDougall) who escapes into a fantastical world of monsters and fairy tales. Dealing with his mother’s (Felicity Jones) illness has necessitated Conor’s spending time with his less-than-sympathetic grandmother (Sigourney Weaver). His daily existence at his U.K. school is one of academic disinterest and bullying by classmates. As Conor’s father (Toby Kebbell) has resettled thousands of miles away in the U.S., the boy yearns for guidance.

Connor unexpectedly summons a most unlikely ally, who bursts forth with terrifying grandeur from an ancient towering yew tree and the powerful earth below it: a 40-foot-high colossus of a creature. Portrayed in performance-capture and voiceover by Neeson, the monster appears at Conor’s bedroom window at the strike of 12:07 one night – and at the same time on nights thereafter. The Monster has stories to tell, and he insists that Conor hear them and powerfully visualize them. Conor’s fear gives way to feistiness and then to looking within; for, The Monster demands that once the tales are told it will be time for Conor to tell his own story in return. Ancient, wild, and relentless, the Monster guides Conor on a journey of courage, faith, and truth.

Director J.A. Bayona and Liam Neeson in A MONSTER CALLS.
Director J.A. Bayona and Liam Neeson in A MONSTER CALLS.

As an actor utterly distinct in personality, voice, and stature, Liam Neeson was everyone’s first choice to portray the Monster, in both voiceover and performance-capture. The Academy Award-nominated actor was drawn to the story immediately, seeing it as “a fable about the complexity of our emotions, and navigating that complexity as we grow up.”

“Bayona is a real cinema talent,” states Liam Neeson. “Occasionally you get to work with directors who are steeped in the love of what they do, and Bayona is one of those. He eats, sleeps, and drinks movies. He’s a walking film encyclopedia. He’s a bit like Martin Scorsese in that way. He’s also very sensitive. He takes care of, guides, and nurtures his actors and that’s what I always hope a director will do. He allows you to experiment, so you both can get at the truth of what a scene is – and he will try for as long as it takes. I love working with a director like that.”

As part of Bayona’s approach, Neeson worked alongside Lewis MacDougall so that both actors could share ownership of their scenes together. Neeson reflects, “I’ve worked with children who’ve been swamped by the industry, and they’ve lost a kind of childlike innocence. Lewis has all that intact. He’s still a real kid – but also a powerful young actor.”

“A Monster Calls” is a visually spectacular and stunning adventure that will open in cinemas on November 2, 2016 from Pioneer Films.