Celine Dion to perform original song for Disney’s ‘Beauty and the Beast’

Five-time GRAMMY® winning and best-selling recording artist Celine Dion will perform an all-new original song, “How Does A Moment Last Forever,” for Disney’s live-action “Beauty and the Beast.” The song will also be included on the film’s soundtrack.

Written by eight-time Oscar®-winning composer Alan Menken (“The Little Mermaid,” “Aladdin”) and veteran lyricist and three-time Oscar winner Tim Rice (“The Lion King,” “Evita”), “How Does A Moment Last Forever” is an emotional ballad about holding onto life’s precious moments. Portions of the song are performed throughout the film and interpolated into the underscore before Dion’s full-length version debuts in the film’s custom main-on-end title design.

Says Dion, “Being a part of the original ‘Beauty and the Beast’ was such a magical experience in my life, and I’m truly honored to be a part of this film again.”
President of Music for Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Production, Mitchell Leib, approached the artist on behalf of the project with the idea of recording one of the three new songs written for the film. “Celine was the unanimous choice of the filmmakers and studio to perform this song,” says Leib, “And everyone involved with the film is thrilled she agreed to be part of this new live-action adaptation.”

Dion originally performed the duet “Beauty and the Beast” – featuring Menken’s haunting melody and two-time Oscar-winner Howard Ashman’s unforgettable lyrics – with Peabo Bryson for the animated film. The song became an instant classic and went on to receive an Academy Award®, Golden Globe® and three GRAMMY Awards.
Menken also provides the film score along with new recordings of the classic songs from the animated film written by himself and Ashman. The original motion picture soundtrack will be released by Walt Disney Records on March 10, 2017.

Belle (Emma Watson) comes to realize that underneath the hideous exterior of the Beast (Dan Stevens) there is the kind heart of a Prince in Disney's BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, a live-action adaptation of the studio's animated classic directed by Bill Condon.
Belle (Emma Watson) comes to realize that underneath the hideous exterior of the Beast (Dan Stevens) there is the kind heart of a Prince in Disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, a live-action adaptation of the studio’s animated classic directed by Bill Condon.

 

About the Film

The story and characters audiences know and love come to spectacular life in the live-action adaptation of Disney’s animated classic “Beauty and the Beast,” a stunning, cinematic event celebrating one of the most beloved tales ever told. “Beauty and the Beast” is the fantastic journey of Belle, a bright, beautiful and independent young woman who is taken prisoner by a Beast in his castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the Beast’s hideous exterior and realize the kind heart of the true Prince within. The film stars: Emma Watson as Belle; Dan Stevens as the Beast; Luke Evans as Gaston, the handsome, but shallow villager who woos Belle; Kevin Kline as Maurice, Belle’s father; Josh Gad as LeFou, Gaston’s long-suffering aide-de-camp; Ewan McGregor as Lumière, the candelabra; Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza, the harpsichord; Audra McDonald as Madame de Garderobe, the wardrobe; Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Plumette, the feather duster; Hattie Morahan as the enchantress; and Nathan Mack as Chip, the teacup; with Ian McKellen as Cogsworth, the mantel clock; and Emma Thompson as the teapot, Mrs. Potts.

Directed by Bill Condon based on the 1991 animated film “Beauty and the Beast,” the screenplay is written by Stephen Chbosky and Evan Spiliotopoulos and produced by Mandeville Films’ David Hoberman, p.g.a. and Todd Lieberman, p.g.a. with Jeffrey Silver, Thomas Schumacher and Don Hahn serving as executive producers.

“Beauty and the Beast” will be released in Philippine cinemas on March 16, 2017.

From ‘Ice Age’ director Chris Wedge comes family adventure ‘Monster Trucks’

From the director of Ice Age, Chris Wedge, comes Paramount Pictures’ new family adventure Monster Trucks starring Lucas Till (X-Men: First Class, X-Men: Apocalypse) and Jane Levy (Don’t Breathe).

Looking for any way to get away from the life and town he was born into, Tripp (Till), a high school senior, builds a Monster Truck from bits and pieces of scrapped cars. After an accident at a nearby oil-drilling site displaces a strange and subterranean creature with a taste and a talent for speed, Tripp may have just found the key to getting out of town and a most unlikely friend.

Melding cutting edge visual effects and state-of-the-art CGI, Monster Trucks is an action filled adventure for the whole family that will keep you on the edge of your seat and ultimately touch your heart.

Chris Wedge opens up what drew him to Monster Trucks. “What appealed to me about it was that it was just nothing but fun, big, gigantic, silly fun. The intention of the movie was always to make something gigantic and weird and fun. And it was never supposed to be anything but. Well, what the film does, I believe, is for kids just to see something fun, and for adults to remind us of the movies that we liked when we were kids.

Comparisons to iconic family films like E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial and the live-action Disney films of the ’60s and the ’70s, weren’t lost of the director. “Yeah, I get it. I grew up watching Herbie, the Love Bug and E.T. hit me at a formative time. And all of those Amblin movies, like Gremlins. They’re all movies where there are kids at the middle that happen to know more than the adults do, and they’re doing the right thing and the adults are trying to stop them. That’s basically where the fun of this comes. And then, there’s some completely unexpected relationship between a weird creature and a truck, and the kid that wants to help it. What I kept thinking it was, as we were making it, was E.T. meets Fast and Furious with trucks.

In addition to the high fun quotient, Monster Trucks boasts of an environmental subtext that doesn’t feel like heavy-handed. “I wanted just enough to get in the dramatic tension in the story, but not to make it a gigantic message film,” explains Wedge. “I just wanted to setup enough to make the story entertaining, and I happen to think that the guys that frack are the bad guys, and that the people that are trying to stop it are the good guys. And putting a little civilization of creatures under there that we hadn’t discovered, and so, we dug that deep down into shale rock. It seems like an appropriate way to bring some attention to it.”

Opening across the Philippines on February 1, 2017, Monster Trucks is distributed in the Philippines by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

Kristen Stewart hunts ghosts in psychological thriller ‘Personal Shopper’

Kristen Stewart stars in the hair-raising horror drama “Personal Shopper” as an American in Paris working as a model’s assistant while trying to contact the spirit of her dead twin brother.

The film’s director, Oliver Assayas won as Best Director for his work in the film in last year’s Cannes Film Festival. From the same festival within the same year that Philippines’ Jaclyn Jose also won as Best Actress for her role in “Ma’Rosa.”

From the acclaimed movie “Clouds of Sils Maria,” director Assayas and Stewart are reunited in “Personal Shopper” where Stewart displays a mysterious and darker character who struggles to repress grief while trying to move on after her brother’s death.

From his recent win at the film festival, Assayas shared his award with all of his crew, “To say that I’m moved is putting it mildly. Cannes has given me so much, and has rewarded me this year with a prize that I’m sharing with a filmmaker I admire: Cristian Mungiu. Directing a film is a collective endeavour. I feel I’ve created a group that is being awarded the prize; a whole family with whom I developed a cinematographic language.”

In a review by Guy Lodge (Time Out), the writer praised Stewart for her performance, “Amid all the shifting mirrored surfaces and hazy ambiguities of Olivier Assayas’s bewitching, brazenly unconventional ghost story, this much can be said with certainty: Kristen Stewart has become one hell of an actress.”

Along with Kristen Stewart, “Personal Shopper” also has an impressive supporting cast that includes Lars Eidinger, Sigrid Bouaziz, Anders Danielsen Lie, Ty Olwin, Hammou Graïa and Benjamin Biolay.

“Personal Shopper” opens February 15, 2016 in cinemas from Pioneer Films.

HK superstar Andy Lau plays war strategist in ‘The Great Wall’

After starring in Zhang Yimou’s dazzling, award-winning romantic adventure House of Flying Daggers in 2004, Hong Kong superstar Andy Lau now reunites with the director for Universal Pictures and Legendary Pictures’ epic fantasy The Great Wall.

Lau is one of Hong Kong’s most commercially successful film actors, performing in more than 140 projects since the 1980s. Voted the No. 1 box-office star of Hong Kong for decades, he truly deserves the moniker of superstar of the Chinese cinema.

In the filml, when a mercenary warrior (Matt Damon) is imprisoned within The Great Wall, he discovers the mystery behind one of the greatest wonders of our world. As wave after wave of marauding beasts, intent on devouring the world, besiege the massive structure, his quest for fortune turns into a journey toward heroism as he joins a huge army of elite warriors to confront this unimaginable and seemingly unstoppable force.

Lau plays Strategist Wang, perhaps the smartest guy in the movie. “He’s got these incredible inventions and is the brains behind The Nameless Order,” remarks co-star Matt Damon. “He’s somebody that my character, William, cottons to, and has a great deal of respect for.”

That respect was also evident between the two actors who had never met before the five-month shoot, but who had a professional connection in their prior work. Turns out that they played the same character in two different movies—Lau as the corrupt police inspector in the 2002 Hong Kong crime thriller Infernal Affairs, and Damon as the devious undercover cop in The Departed, the 2006 English-language adaptation. It was something the actors joked about during some of their casual chats on the set during breaks in filming.

“I told Matt that he was cleverer than me because he got paid more for his movie,” the veteran of more than 150 films jests. “Matt told me that I’m cleverer than he is because he dies in that, and I lived to do two sequel movies. I enjoyed working with Matt and feel he has become a good friend. I’m looking forward to working with him again.”

Lau describes Strategist Wang as “a scientist spending his life doing the research about the enemy and trying to fight against them. During the Song Dynasty, the society was quite open, so lots of Chinese culture was well developed and many great thinkers and inventions were founded. That’s why I think they (chose) Song Dynasty as the background for this movie.”

As for the challenge of the bilingual role, Lau confesses that “it’s really hard for me to practice speaking English. I got the script a month before shooting and it took me two weeks to fully understand the story. Then it took me another two weeks to remember all the lines. Luckily, we had dialogue coaches on set, who coached me in a very good way. I also have to say thank you to Matt and Willem [Dafoe] because they gave me very good suggestions while I was performing. Willem was like a teacher of mine, trying to polish my performing to make me feel great in front of camera. Matt was also a team player, always considerate to everyone’s place on the set.”

“Andy Lau is one of the best actors in China,” Zhang hails. “He has been popular in China for 40 years. There was a lot of English dialogue for him, even more than the foreign actors. Though he speaks English well, he wanted to tell the world Chinese actors speak English well, and he practiced hard.”

Opening across the Philippines in IMAX and regular cinemas on January 25, 2017, The Great Wall is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

Milla Jovovich summarizes ‘Resident Evil’ films in two minutes

As Alice and Umbrella Corporation’s battle is coming to an end with the release of Resident Evil: The Final Chapter in Philippine cinemas on February 1, Columbia Pictures has shared a “rewind” video featurette, explaining everything that’s happened so far.

The video recap features Milla Jovovich as she talks the viewer through every fun highlight of the last five Resident Evil films. Watch the featurette below.

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter picks up immediately after the events in Resident Evil: Retribution, in which Alice (Jovovich) is the only survivor of what was meant to be humanity’s final stand against the undead. Now, she must return to where the nightmare began – The Hive in Raccoon City, where the Umbrella Corporation is gathering its forces for a final strike against the only remaining survivors of the apocalypse.

The film also stars Ali Larter (Resident Evil: Afterlife) as Claire Redfield, Iain Glen (Game of Thrones, Resident Evil: Extinction) in the role of Dr. Alexander Isaacs, Shawn Roberts (Resident Evil: Afterlife) as Albert Wesker, Australian actress Ruby Rose (Orange is the New Black) as Abigail, Eoin Macken (The Night Shift) as Doc, Cuban-American actor William Levy, as Christian; Fraser James (Law & Order: UK) as Michael, and Japanese model and TV personality, Rola, as Cobalt.

Opening across the Philippines on February 1, 2017, Resident Evil: The Final Chapter is distributed by Columbia Pictures, the local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.

WATCH: ‘500 Days of Summer’ director helms Chris Evans-starrer ‘Gifted’

Chris Evans plays another kind of hero in the upcoming deeply touching family drama “Gifted” as a doting uncle to McKenna Grace.

“Gifted” trails the joyous journey of Frank Adler (Evans) and Mary Adler living peacefully on their own but is interrupted when Frank’s mother, Evelyn (Lindsay Duncan), discovers that Mary is a prodigy like her mother. Fighting against his mother for the custody of Mary, Frank is determined to give the child a normal upbringing as opposed to the plans of Evelyn.

Supported with an impressive cast, “Gifted” also includes Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer and Critics’ Choice Best Actress (Comedy) Jenny Slate directed by Marc Webb who also helmed blockbuster favourites such as “500 Days of Summer,” “The Amazing Spider-Man” and “The Amazing Spider-Man 2.”

“Gifted” opens May 3, 2017 in Philippine cinemas from 20th Century Fox and to be distributed by Warner Bros.

WATCH: Hugh Jackman is back in action in new ‘Logan: The Wolverine’ trailer

20th Century Fox has just released Trailer #2 of the most anticipated movie this year “Logan: The Wolverine” featuring a thrilling series of action-packed scenes and intense moments introducing a young mutant girl, Laura (played by Dafne Keen), who possesses the same powerful claw and strength like The Wolverine. Laura, as seen in the trailer is being protected by Logan (Hugh Jackman) and Professor X (Patrick Stewart) from groups of armed men wanting to take her.

Directed by James Mangold, “Logan: The Wolverine” will open in Philippine cinemas nationwide on March 1 (Wednesday) from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.

Hitmaker Jason Blum produces new suspense thriller ‘Split’

Following last year’s breakout hit The Visit, producer Jason Blum (The Purge and Insidious series) reunites with filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan for the critically acclaimed suspense thriller Split from Universal Pictures.

Starring James McAvoy and Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch), Split is an original film that delves into the mysterious recesses of one man’s fractured, gifted mind.

In Split, though Kevin (McAvoy) has evidenced 23 personalities—each with unique physical attributes—to his trusted psychiatrist, Dr. Fletcher (Buckley), there remains one still submerged who is set to materialize and dominate all the others. Compelled to abduct three teenage girls led by the willful, observant Casey (Taylor-Joy), Kevin reaches a war for survival among all of those contained within him—as well as everyone around him—as the walls between his compartments shatter apart.

Blum, known for his industry innovation in helping to shepherd small-budget films into worldwide blockbusters, discusses the partnership with Shyamalan: “Night can tell these extraordinarily character-driven stories against a backdrop of a larger subject matter. Split isn’t a typical small-budget film; it’s a large vision on a limited budget. It is not CGI or hundreds of millions of dollars that makes Split feel so epic—it’s Night’s incredibly provocative story.”

Jason Blum is an Academy Award®-nominated and two-time Primetime Emmy Award- and Peabody Award-winning producer. His multi-media company, Blumhouse Productions, pioneered a new model of studio filmmaking: producing high-quality, micro-budget films.

Blumhouse, which is in the midst of a 10-year first-look deal with Universal Pictures, has produced the highly profitable The Purge, Insidious, Ouija and Paranormal Activity franchises, which have grossed more than $2 billion worldwide. Blumhouse’s model began with the original Paranormal Activity, which was made for $15,000 and was released by Paramount Pictures, grossing approximately $200 million worldwide, making it the most profitable film in the history of Hollywood.

Blum, who was nominated for an Academy Award® for producing Whiplash, was added to Vanity Fair’s “New Establishment List 2015” and received the Producer of the Year Award at 2016’s CinemaCon.

Now playing across the Philippines, Split is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

Vin Diesel is back to break every rule in ‘xXx: Return of Xander Cage’

In 2002, then emerging actor Vin Diesel starred in the action-thriller xXx which became a blockbuster, grossing over $350M worldwide. Diesel played Xander Cage, the first recruit to the ultra-secret xXx spy program, alongside Samuel L. Jackson as Gibbons, the program’s leader. Now, Diesel breathes new life into the franchise with xXx: Return of Xander Cage — a project fans have been demanding for nearly a decade.

For the action superstar, it was a nothing short of a homecoming. “There’s a need to re-visit this type of hero archetype,” says Diesel. “Xander is, in some ways, the reluctant hero, the anti-hero. It’s something that I’ve always felt like I owned. I always felt like, sooner or later, I’ll have to return to this character and right the wrongs of the past,” he says.

The xXx concept has always been and still is, about one bad-ass hero, able to handle everything in his way with a charm and humor no other secret agent has ever possessed. “We were very conscious of the status quo of spy films at the time of the first xXx. We had all the log lines that said, ‘It’s not your daddy’s secret agent’ or ‘a new breed of secret agent,’” Diesel says. “The shaping of xXx at its time, was that the heroes were white males who have a military background and they weren’t necessarily representative of the global audience. All of a sudden along came Xander Cage, who was anti-establishment and looked nothing like James Bond or Jason Bourne. He really was something wholly new and fresh,” says Diesel.

While the world has changed dramatically since the first film, undertones present in the original xXx, from the post 9/11 era, are still relevant today. “Production talks began for the first film pre-9/11,” says Diesel. “After 9/11 we realized that there could be a time or circumstance that would force a seemingly uncaring person to be patriotic. Our film was a call to action was born out of that.” Xander Cage was your rebel with a cause and that theme is echoed in his return.

“Xander is a person that society could write off as unimportant or of no value because of the type of music he listens to and we were saying that any of us could be heroic and patriotic if something feels as unjust as the plot proposed in the first xXx,” says Diesel. The xXx franchise is proving to be even more relevant to today’s market because of what’s going on globally. It’s taken a serious issue – government conspiracy and global destruction – and made it into a fun, save-the-world type of film.

The third explosive chapter of the blockbuster franchise that redefined the spy thriller, xXx: Return of Xander Cage finds extreme athlete turned government operative Xander Cage coming out of self-imposed exile and on a collision course with deadly alpha warrior Xiang (Donnie Yen) and his team in a race to recover a sinister and seemingly unstoppable weapon known as Pandora’s Box. Recruiting an all-new group of thrill-seeking cohorts, Xander finds himself enmeshed in a deadly conspiracy that points to collusion at the highest levels of world governments.

Directed by D.J. Caruso (Disturbia), xXx: The Return of Xander Cage is packed with the series’ signature deadpan wit and bad-ass attitude, raising the bar on extreme action with some of the most mind-blowing stunts to ever be caught on film.

Now playing across the Philippines, xXx: The Return of Xander Cage is distributed in the Philippines by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

Jackie Chan-starrer ‘Kung Fu Yoga’ hits Philippine cinemas

Gear up for a high-octane, adrenaline-pumping action-adventure for the whole family as Star Cinema releases Kung Fu Yoga starring legendary Asian action superstar Jackie Chan.

Directed by renowned Hong Kong film director, producer, action choreographer, screenwriter, and philanthropist Stanley Tong, who first directed Jackie Chan in Police Story 3: Super Cop in 1992, Kung Fu Yoga marks the much-awaited reunion between Chan and Tong since their mega-blockbuster collaboration in Chinese Zodiac 12 (CZ12) back in 2012.

Kung Fu Yoga is centered on the exploits of Chinese archeology professor Jack (Chan) who teams up with beautiful Indian professor Ashmita and assistant Kyra to locate lost Magadha treasure. The team travel across Asia, Europe and the Middle East as they dodge one obstacle after the other until they are ultimately led to a remote mountain temple in India where they will use a rare diamond as a key to unlock the real treasure that will culminate their quest.

During their Dubai press conference, director Stanley Tong revealed that they employed 70 super sports car during the car chase in the streets of Dubai, amounting to US $30M. The said scenes feature luxury brands including Bugatti Veyron, Lamborghini, Bentley, and Ferrari.

It is also director Tong who has always been interested to India’s culture. He integrated traditional Indian magic tricks, including the rope trick and the levitation into the action choreography.

A scene in Iceland made Jackie Chan dived into the water beneath the ice cave, he then stayed underwater for hours at a sub-zero temperature to achieve the best effect of the scene.

With an illustrious career that spans more than five decades, Chan was honored by the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences an honorary Oscar for his extraordinary achievements in film at the 8th Annual Governors Awards ceremony last November 2016 and Kung Fu Yoga marks his very first full-length feature film this 2017.

The movie features an international cast that highlights some of Asia’s most talented and accomplished actors led by Hong Kong actor and singer Aarif Rahman, who was catapulted to stardom after winning Best New Performer and Best Original Song at the 29th Hong Kong Film Awards in 2010, for his superb performance in the critically acclaimed drama Echoes Of The Rainbow; and three of Bollywood’s biggest stars: Amyra Dastur, who is considered today as the fresh face of Bollywood; former Indian beauty queen and now rising Bollywood star Disha Patani; and character actor Sonu Sood. Who is a household name in India who has done 70 movies, Chinese multi-media star and Korean pop band “EXO” member Zhang Yixing and China’s “Most Beautiful Yoga Instructor” MuQi MiYa are also featured in the movie in unforgettable supporting roles.

Follow the journey Jack and his incredible team and discover what dangers and treasures await them in this gargantuan action movie that will open 2017.

Distributed by Star Cinema, Kung Fu Yoga hits Philippine cinemas nationwide starting February 1, 2017.