Taylor Swift puts you in trance as Bombalurina in ‘Cats’

From cat lover to actual cat, superstar recording artist Taylor Swift becomes Bombalurina in Universal Pictures’ epic musical Cats (in Philippine cinemas January 8).

Bombalurina is trickster cat Macavity’s (Idris Elba) powerful and beautiful partner in crime. She is full of personality and attitude. She loves to be the center of attention and makes a grand entrance into any room she steps. She’s the leader of Macavity’s gang and puts all the other cats in a trance using her catnip.

Oscar®-winning director Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech, Les Misérables, The Danish Girl) transforms Andrew Lloyd Webber’s record-shattering stage musical Cats into a breakthrough cinematic event — a spectacular, fun, funny, moving, family-friendly film for all generations.

In the original show, the song “Macavity” is performed by two cats, but Hooper wanted to expand the role of Bombalurina as Macavity’s partner in crime, and the number was totally reconceived for one performer, which gives it a new and different impact for the film.

The role demands a performer who can hold the attention of the audience by sheer force of personality and with immense singing ability, as well as being able to act and dance, and the filmmakers couldn’t think of anyone better for the part than the multi-platinum, Grammy Award-winning, megastar Taylor Swift.

“There was only one name that we wanted for Bombalurina,” producer Eric Fellner says. “Tom had met Taylor during the casting process for Les Miserables and when this opportunity came up, he reached out to her and we were all so glad when she said, ‘yes.’”

Hooper was delighted that he and Swift had this second chance to work together. “I’ve always wanted to work with her,” Hooper says. “So, to be able to get in touch early on in this process and have this character in mind, and finally have the chance to work with and direct her as an actress, as well as a singer and a dancer, was such an amazing experience.”

Cats also stars James Corden as Bustopher Jones, Judi Dench as Old Deuteronomy, Jason Derulo as Rum Tum Tugger, Idris Elba as Macavity, Jennifer Hudson as Grizabella, Ian McKellen as Gus The Theatre Cat, Rebel Wilson as Jennyanydots and introduces Royal Ballet principal dancer Francesca Hayward in her feature film debut as Victoria.

Cats is distributed in the Philippines by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures. #CatsMovie 

WATCH: ‘A Quiet Place Part 2’ unveils trailer tease, poster

Step into a new unknown. Watch the trailer announcement clip for Paramount Pictures’ A Quiet Place Part II starring Emily Blunt.  

The official full trailer coming on January 1, 2020. Check out the teaser poster and first-look image below.

Paramount Pictures presents in association with Michael Bay, a Platinum Dunes / Sunday Night production, a John Krasinski film “A Quiet Place Part II.” Executive producers Allyson Seeger, Joann Perritano, Aaron Janus; produced by Michael Bay, Andrew Form, Brad Fuller, John Krasinski.

Based on characters created by Bryan Woods & Scott Beck, written and directed by John Krasinski.

A Quiet Place Part II stars Emily Blunt, Cillian Murphy, Millicent Simmonds, Noah Jupe and Djimon Hounsou.

Following the deadly events at home, the Abbott family (Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds, Noah Jupe) must now face the terrors of the outside world as they continue their fight for survival in silence. Forced to venture into the unknown, they quickly realize that the creatures that hunt by sound are not the only threats that lurk beyond the sand path.

In Philippine cinemas March 2020, A Quiet Place: Part II is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures. #AQuietPlace

James Wan’s original horror-thriller ‘Malignant’ wraps production

Shooting has wrapped in Los Angeles on Atomic Monster’s “Malignant,” the latest creation from “Conjuring” universe architect James Wan (“Aquaman,” “Furious 7”).  The film marks director Wan’s return to his roots with this new original horror thriller.

“Malignant” stars Annabelle Wallis (“The Loudest Voice,” “The Mummy,” “Annabelle”), Maddie Hasson (YouTube Originals’ “Impulse,” “Novitiate,” “I Saw the Light”), George Young (“A Bread Factory” Parts 1 & 2, “Containment,” HBO Asia’s horror mini-series “Grace”), Michole Briana White (“Lila and Eve,” “She Hate Me,” “Encino Man”), Jake Abel (“Another Life,” “Dirty John,” “Love & Mercy”), Jacqueline McKenzie (Netflix series “Pine Gap,” “Halifax: Retribution,” “Romper Stomper: Next Gen”), and Ingrid Bisu (“The Nun,” “Toni Erdmann”).

Wan directed from a screenplay by Akela Cooper (“M3GAN,” “The Nun 2”) and JT Petty, story by James Wan & Ingrid Bisu.  Plot details are being kept under wraps.  The film is produced by Wan and Michael Clear, with Richard Brener, Eric McLeod, Bisu, Judson Scott and Starlight Media’s Peter Luo serving as executive producers.  The film is being independently financed through Starlight Media and Midas Innovation.  

Behind the scenes, Wan was joined by his frequent collaborators, director of photography Don Burgess and editor Kirk Morri (“Aquaman,” “The Conjuring 2”) and production designer Desma Murphy (art director, “Aquaman,” “Furious 7”), as well as costume designer Lisa Norcia (“Insidious: The Last Key”).

In Philippine cinemas August 12, 2020, “Malignant” is a presentation of Wan’s banner, Atomic Monster, Starlight Media and New Line Cinema, and will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures.

Kathy Bates wins acting honors for Clint Eastwood’s ‘Richard Jewell’

Legendary actress Kathy Bates (Misery, Dolores Claiborne) has been getting rave notices for her performance as the mother of real-life hero security guard-turned bombing suspect in Clint Eastwood’s “Richard Jewell.”

See a glimpse of Bates’ performance that critics are calling “a gutting centerpiece” in the clip below.

After winning the Best Supporting Actress prize from the National Board of Review (NBR), Bates has just received a Golden Globe Awards nomination in the same category.  

“Thank you HFPA for the recognition, I am so proud of this film and it was an honor to work with Mr. Eastwood on telling this important story,” Bates said in a statement after her nomination was announced by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) that hands out the Golden Globes. “I hope our film brings justice and peace to Richard and Bobi Jewell in telling their truth and honoring his heroism.”

Despite her long and respected career, this film marks Bates’ first at bat in an Eastwood movie.  “I have to say what really attracted me to the film was working with Clint, and the idea that I would finally get that opportunity was just amazing.”  

The actress reveals that the first thing she asked the storied director was, “‘Why did you want to make this movie?’  And the first thing he said to me was that it’s a movie he’d want to see.  He said he really felt it was a tragedy that this man was treated so badly by the FBI, that he was tricked when he went in to make this training film, which was all a ruse to get him to waive his Miranda rights.  That just astounded me.  I had known about the bombing, of course, but I had no idea how devastating it was for Richard Jewell and his mother.  And to read about that in the script was just absolutely horrifying.”

In Philippine cinemas January 15, “Richard Jewell” is distributed in the Philippines by Warner Bros. Pictures, a WarnerMedia Company. #RichardJewell

About “Richard Jewell”

“There is a bomb in Centennial Park.  You have thirty minutes.”  The world is first introduced to Richard Jewell as the security guard who reports finding the device at the 1996 Atlanta Games bombing—his quick thinking making him a hero whose swift actions save countless lives.  But within days, the law enforcement wannabe will become the FBI’s number one suspect, vilified in the court of public opinion, his life ripped apart.  

Directed by Clint Eastwood, the suspense drama “Richard Jewell” centers around the events that forever made his name synonymous with that terrible act.  The film stars Oscar winners Sam Rockwell (“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”) as attorney Watson Bryant and Kathy Bates (“Misery,” TV’s “American Horror Story”) as Richard’s mom, Bobi; Jon Hamm (“Baby Driver”) as lead FBI investigating agent Tom Shaw (a fictionalized character); Olivia Wilde (“Life Itself”) as reporter Kathy Scruggs; and Paul Walter Hauser (“I, Tonya”) as Richard Jewell.

Oscar winner Eastwood directed from a screenplay by Oscar nominee Billy Ray (“Captain Phillips”), based on true events and on the Vanity Fair article “American Nightmare—The Ballad of Richard Jewell” by Marie Brenner.  Eastwood also produced under his Malpaso banner, alongside Tim Moore, Jessica Meier, Kevin Misher, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Davisson and Jonah Hill.

Clint Eastwood and Kathy Bates.

‘Frozen II’ review: Beautiful musical sequel

Disney’s Frozen II brings us back to Arendelle with a great, magical adventure of Anna and Elsa.

Frozen II is considered as one of the most anticipated sequels this year. Following the blockbuster success of the previous installment, Frozen II brings us back to Arendelle and continues the adventures of its magical Queen Elsa (Idina Menzel); her kind sister, Anna (Kristen Bell) and her boyfriend Kristoff (Jonathan Groff); and everyone’s favorite snowman, Olaf (Josh Gad). This time around, the characters undertake a dangerous journey to a mysterious enchanted forest, hoping to discover the source of Elsa’s powers. The sisters learn more about their parents’ deaths and backgrounds; thanks to several flashbacks, viewers may feel even sadder about the orphans’ loss. There’s a lot of humor (thanks, Olaf!) and of course big musical numbers.

The film may still be considered as a great musical piece from Disney. There are new songs like ‘Into the Unknown’, ‘Show Yourself’ and ‘Lost in the Woods’ that will hit you right in every way as these songs will surely be on your playlist. Yes, the sequel is ultimately a bit more intense than the original and a bit more like an add-on because of its hype but there’s a lot more to look forward to seeing in this one. Everything about the story, even though simple, successfully puts positive messages about sisterhood, empowerment, acceptance, and true love. It’s still a heartwarming tale that everyone would enjoy. There’s this one song entitled ‘When I am Older’ that would really move our hearts even whether you are young or an adult viewer. There’s just so much feels in it.

It’s a beautiful musical sequel. Frozen II may have enhanced the story of Anna and Elsa by bringing up flashbacks about their parents but it didn’t just focus on them all the way. It includes Kristoff and Olaf which adds up to the color of what it wanted to tell. Both of them have a solo part that would make everyone happy and entertained along the film. It’s fun seeing them together with Anna and Elsa. Olaf almost steals the show because of his heartwarming messages to other characters. He totally reflects on everyone as he shows how things may change while we grow up in life.

Overall, the film is so good because it does not just stick to it’s musical and funny tropes, but also provides plenty heartwarming life lessons about sisterhood, friendship, true love and acceptance. Also, there’s Anna and Elsa’s being good examples of being strong women who lead, communicate and support each other with confidence. It’s just worth your time!

Furthermore, Frozen II is magically a beautiful musical film that you and your family would enjoy. This is the sequel that brings us into the unknown to create and see the best version of our self.


Directed by Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee voiced by Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Jonathan Groff, Josh Gad, Sterling K. Brown, and Evan Rachel Wood

WATCH: ‘In the Heights’ trailer turns up the volume of your dreams

The creator of “Hamilton” and the director of “Crazy Rich Asians” invite you to the event of the summer, where the streets are made of music and little dreams become big… “In the Heights.”

Check out the film’s official trailer and watch “In the Heights” in Philippine cinemas July 2020.

Lights up on Washington Heights…The scent of a cafecito caliente hangs in the air just outside of the 181st Street subway stop, where a kaleidoscope of dreams rallies this vibrant and tight-knit community.  At the intersection of it all is the likeable, magnetic bodega owner Usnavi (Anthony Ramos), who saves every penny from his daily grind as he hopes, imagines and sings about a better life.

“In the Heights” fuses Lin-Manuel Miranda’s kinetic music and lyrics with director John M. Chu’s lively and authentic eye for storytelling to capture a world very much of its place, but universal in its experience.

“In the Heights” stars Anthony Ramos (“A Star is Born,” Broadway’s “Hamilton”), Corey Hawkins (“Straight Outta Compton,” “BlacKkKlansman”), singer/songwriter Leslie Grace, Melissa Barerra (TV’s “Vida”), Olga Merediz (Broadway’s “In the Heights”), Daphne Rubin-Vega (Broadway’s “Rent”), Gregory Diaz IV (Broadway’s “Matilda the Musical”), Stephanie Beatriz (TV’s “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”), Dascha Polanco (TV’s “Orange is the New Black”) and Jimmy Smits (the “Star Wars” films).

Chu is directing the film from a screenplay by Quiara Alegría Hudes; it is based on the musical stage play, with music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, book by Quiara Alegría Hudes and concept by Miranda. “In the Heights” is produced by Miranda and Hudes, together with Scott Sanders, Anthony Bregman and Mara Jacobs. David Nicksay and Kevin McCormick served as executive producers.

Behind the camera, Chu is reuniting with his “Crazy Rich Asians” production designer, Nelson Coates, and editor, Myron Kerstein. He is also collaborating with director of photography Alice Brooks (TV’s “The Walking Dead”) and costume designer Mitchell Travers (“Eighth Grade”).  The choreography is by Christopher Scott, who previously teamed with Chu on the award-winning “The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers.”

“In the Heights” was filmed in New York, primarily on location in the dynamic community of Washington Heights.  

“In the Heights” is distributed worldwide and in the Philippines by Warner Bros. Pictures, a WarnerMedia Company. #InTheHeightsMovie

‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ gets limited release Dec 20-22 ahead of Jan 8 opening

The Force is strong with Filipino fans and the countdown to Star Wars Weekend has officially begun! In just less than IX days, Star Wars enthusiasts will be able to witness years of the epic Skywalker saga reach its riveting conclusion and the excitement has reached intergalactic highs.   

On December 20 to 22, 2019, Star Wars Weekend goes on full light speed as this special, early release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker grants Filipino fans of the franchise to celebrate the much-awaited final installment in the Star Wars saga alongside the whole world. 

Just days away, Star Wars devotees will be reunited with their favorite characters portrayed by an impressive cast including Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Daniels, Naomi Ackie, Domhnall Gleeson, Richard E. Grant, Lupita Nyong’o, Keri Russell, Joonas Suotamo, Kelly Marie Tran, with Ian McDiarmid and Billy Dee Williams.

Check the cinemas near you for tickets to the limited early release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker happening on December 20 to 22, 2019 available in 2D, IMAX 3D, IMAX with Laser, 4DX and MX4D formats. The film returns in cinemas on January 8, 2020.

About Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

Lucasfilm and director J.J. Abrams join forces once again to take viewers on an epic journey to a galaxy far, far away with Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, the riveting conclusion of the seminal Skywalker saga, where new legends will be born and the final battle for freedom is yet to come. 

The film stars Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Daniels, Naomi Ackie, Domhnall Gleeson, Richard E. Grant, Lupita Nyong’o, Keri Russell, Joonas Suotamo, Kelly Marie Tran, with Ian McDiarmid and Billy Dee Williams

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is directed by J.J. Abrams and produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Abrams and Michelle Rejwan. Callum Greene, Tommy Gormley and Jason McGatlin serve as executive producers. The screenplay was written by Chris Terrio & J.J. Abrams and the story is by Derek Connolly & Colin Trevorrow and J.J. Abrams & Chris Terrio, based on characters created by George Lucas. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker will be released for a limited time in the Philippines from December 20 to 22, 2019, and will be widely released starting January 8, 2020.

Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart bicker to ‘The Next Level’ in ‘Jumanji’ sequel

Today’s funniest screen tandem Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart are back as in-game avatars Dr. Smolder Bravestone and Mouse Finbar, respectively, in Columbia Pictures’ epic action-adventure Jumanji: The Next Level (now showing in Philippine cinemas).

But there are twists! Because the game was smashed at the end of the previous film, it’s not functioning normally, which means anything can happen.

Dr. Smolder Bravestone (Johnson), the intrepid archeological adventurer and muscle-bound action hero is back in the game, complete with his laundry list of strengths: fearlessness, climbing, speed, boomerang, and his trademark smoldering intensity. However, this time, he serves as the avatar for Eddie (Danny DeVito), Spencer’s grandfather. In the previous film, he got to play a neurotic teenager, and now he gets to play the opposite end of the spectrum. The juxtaposition of Bravestone’s heroic abilities, and Dwayne Johnson’s physicality inhabited by a cantankerous elderly man recovering from hip surgery, results in a slew of comedic moments. Especially hilarious is seeing Bravestone inhabited by an irritable guy from Asbury Park, New Jersey.

“Capturing the essence and nuances of Danny DeVito was the best time as an actor. I had a chance to study him, going back and watching a lot of his old movies and TV shows, all the way back to Taxi. His work is just so brilliant,” says Dwayne Johnson. “There’s just a wit and a way about him. I was able to spend time with Danny and embody him as best I could. And he was very gracious. It was a blast becoming Danny DeVito.”

Meanwhile, diminutive zoologist and weapons valet, Mouse Finbar (Hart) is back sporting his trademark red bandana and huge backpack of weapons. In this level of the game, his new skill of linguistics proves especially helpful in getting the gang over some serious humps. Finbar’s weaknesses include a lack of speed, inferior strength, and a penchant for cake. This time, he becomes an avatar for Eddie’s estranged friend and former business partner, Milo (Danny Glover).

Kevin Hart’s trademark rapid-fire style of comedic delivery is replaced by the meandering, lackadaisical narrative style of Milo, resulting in major laughs as he embodies Danny Glover’s mannerisms and speech cadence. His zoological explanations of various animals provide comedic footnotes throughout the story, even if he is constantly bewildered as to how he knows this information. He doesn’t grasp that he’s been dropped into a video game, prompting him to continually ask questions, such (“Did I die and turn into a small, muscular Boy Scout?”) and is constantly misunderstanding the circumstances of their predicament.

“You see Mouse Finbar take on the persona of an older gentleman, with me being Danny Glover,” shares Hart. “The older version of Danny Glover in movies just makes me laugh because he’s so calm. Everything he says is just happy. I thought that could be a very funny place to play with. Like that older man that’s a little more at ease, because I’m very ‘Aahhh!’ all the time!”

Jumanji: The Next Level is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International. #Jumanji

Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart

About Jumanji: The Next Level

In Jumanji: The Next Level, the gang is back but the game has changed. As they return to Jumanji to rescue one of their own, they discover that nothing is as they expect. The players will have to brave parts unknown and unexplored, from the arid deserts to the snowy mountains, in order to escape the world’s most dangerous game.

The film stars Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, Nick Jonas, Awkwafina, Ser’Darius Blain, Madison Iseman, Morgan Turner, Alex Wolff with Danny Glover and Danny DeVito.

Directed by Jake Kasdan, the sequel is written by Jake Kasdan & Jeff Pinker & Scott Rosenberg, based on the book Jumanji by Chris Van Allsburg. The film is produced by Matt Tolmach, Jake Kasdan, Dwayne Johnson and Dany Garcia.

Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart star in Jumanji: The Next Level

Action-comedy ‘Extreme Job,’ second biggest all-time hit in Korea, opens in Philippine cinemas

Going undercover to investigate a big-time drug syndicate while… frying chicken?! It doesn’t get more extreme than this!

This December, VIVA International Pictures and MVP Entertainment bring you the blockbuster Korean comedy film EXTREME JOB. To investigate a drug syndicate and its operation, five detectives start running a chicken restaurant located across the syndicate’s base. But they find themselves busier frying chicken than investigating, when their restaurant start to become famous for its accidental delicious food. And things turn out for the worst when they find out that their chicken chain is actually distributing drugs. 

The hardworking chicken restaurant crew a.k.a detectives is led by Chief Go (Ryu-Seung-yong, MIRACLE IN CELL NO. 7). A determined but poorly performing cop, he invests his retirement fund into the fried chicken business. His team consists of the unreliable Detective Jang (Lee Hanee), the determined goal-setter Detective Young-ho (Lee Dong-hwi), the youngest, enthusiastic team member Detective Jae-hoon (Gong-Myoung), and Detective Ma (Jin Sun-kyu) who used his parents’ chicken recipe, making their restaurant famous. Together, the five of them fry chicken in the morning and fight crime in the evening.

EXTREME JOB was released in Korea January this year, and just started setting box office records. Three days after its release, EXTREME JOB surpassed 1 million viewers, setting a record of exceeding 1 million views in the shortest period of time for a January comedy film in Korea. On its fourth day, it reached a total of 2 million viewers, breaking the record of fastest comedy film to hit the 2 million mark. Previous record holders Miracle in Cell No. 7 and Miss Granny took six days to hit the 2 million mark. 

19 days after its release, EXTREME JOB became the highest-grossing Korean comedy film of all-time, setting a new record of 12,835,396 moviegoers. And according to statistics released by the Korean Film Council, EXTREME JOB now holds the record for the second most-watched film in Korea of all time, with a record of 14,536,378 moviegoers. 

‘Extreme Job’ now second biggest all-time hit in South Korea …Find out what makes these detectives’ fried chicken a hit dine-in, take-out and on-screen when it hits cinemas nationwide on December 11. 

WATCH: Next chapter in ‘Ghostbusters’ saga reveals first official trailer

From director Jason Reitman and producer Ivan Reitman, comes Columbia Pictures’ Ghostbusters: Afterlife, the next chapter in the original Ghostbusters universe.

Check out the film’s official trailer #1 below and watch Ghostbusters: Afterlife in Philippine cinemas soon.

In Ghostbusters: Afterlife, when a single mom and her two kids arrive in a small town, they begin to discover their connection to the original ghostbusters and the secret legacy their grandfather left behind. The film is written by Jason Reitman & Gil Kenan. Based on the 1984 film “Ghostbusters,” an Ivan Reitman film written by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis.

Starring Carrie Coon, Finn Wolfhard, Mckenna Grace and Paul Rudd, Ghostbusters: Afterlife’s executive producers are Dan Aykroyd, Gil Kenan, Jason Blumenfeld, Michael Beugg.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife will be distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International. #Ghostbusters