VARIETY – Megan Fox, best known for “Transformers” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” is set to star in suspense thriller “Aurora.” Arclight Films will start worldwide sales for the movie at the European Film Market in Berlin.
“Aurora,” to be directed by Lazar Bodroža (“A.I. Rising”), tells the story of a female astronaut stationed in outer space to monitor solar storms that endanger earth. “She discovers shock waves from solar storms are bending time pushing her into an emotional and psychological struggle with her past and present,” according to a statement from Arclight.
Arclight, led by Gary Hamilton, has joined forces with Jordan Gertner (“Spring Breakers,” “The Virgin Suicides”) and Toby Gibson (“The Lego Movie” franchise) to produce and finance the pic. The script is written by Pete Bridges, Toby Gibson and Stuart Willis (“Restoration”). Tim Peternel will executive produce. Production is set to start in May in Serbia.
“’Aurora’ is a beautiful action-packed visual feast set in space and Megan is perfectly cast to play a character battling demons from her past,” said Hamilton.
Arclight’s “Possessor” premiered at Sundance in competition, and the company is screening four new films at EFM. In addition, Arclight’s “Escape From Pretoria,” starring Daniel Radcliffe and Daniel Webber, is releasing theatrically in March in the U.S. and U.K., and “Hotel Mumbai” has grossed $30 million at the box office to date. Arclight recently announced its new project, “The Portable Door,” starring Christoph Waltz and Guy Pearce.
Category: Movie News
— Steven Weintraub (@colliderfrosty) March 25, 2014
For the first time since 1993, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are making their return to the big screen in live action this summer. Produced by Michael Bay and directed by Jonathan Liebesman, the new movie promises to reintroduce the classic characters to a new generation, replacing foam rubber suits with fancy performance-capture technology. We have been patiently waiting for our first look at the new version of the turtles for months now, and tonight we finally got our first peek, as the premiere trailer was debuted during the Paramount Pictures presentation at CinemaCon.
The trailer begins with a camera soaring through skyscrapers and a voice over from Shredder (William Fichtner). He talks about how the city has become overrun with “crime, violence and fear,” and how a once great city has been destroyed. We see shots of a tower on top of a skyscraper come crashing down and hooligans wearing masks firing off guns. Shredder talks about justice being restored and the need for heroes.
Down in a subway we see flashes of action as criminals are getting their asses handed to them by the turtles, though they are moving too fast for us to get a good look at them. April O’Neil (Megan Fox) is on the scene and we see her recording the action on her phone. The voice-over continues, but there are also flashes of Shredder out of costume talking with April, and shots of the legendary ooze that will eventually transform the titular heroes. Shredder then drops the biggest bomb of all and perhaps the movie’s biggest change in TMNT mythos: knowing that heroes are not born but rather created, Shredder actually worked with April’s dad to create the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Paramount’s CGI/live-action hybrid originally was scheduled to open in early June, sandwiched between “The Good Dinosaur” and “How to Train Your Dragon 2.”
Steering clear of other family films, Paramount and Nickelodeon Films’ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will now hit theaters on Aug. 8, 2014, two months later than originally planned.
Paramount has good reason for moving the CGI/live-action hybrid, which Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes is producing. This summer, the box office saw a glut of family movies, resulting in diminished returns for a number of films.
Had it stuck to its original June 6, 2014 release date, Ninja Turtles would have opened only a week after Disney and Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur (May 30) and two weeks before Fox and DreamWorks Animation’s How to Train Your Dragon 2 (June 20). While Ninja Turtles has far more action than traditional animated movies and could even receive a PG-13 rating, it’s still making an aggressive family play.
Ninja Turtles also gets out of the way of Paramount and Michael Bay’s Transformers 4, which opens on June 27 (the previous Transformers films all have opened on a Wednesday, so it’s likely that Paramount will move up the release of the fourth installment by two days to June 25).
With Ninja Turtles, directed by Jonathan Liebesman, Paramount continues its bid to plant its own flag in the family arena now that it is no longer distributing titles from DreamWorks Animation.
There’s been a lot of fan controversy about the Michael Bay produced update, from Bay’s comments that the Turtles are aliens to Megan Fox going redhead as April O’Neil. Arnett plays Vernon Fenwick and explained how the comic book character was elaborated to give him a juicy role in the film.
“He’s a character who’s in the comic and in the Turtles mythology,” Arnett said. “He’s sort of a lesser character. He’s a cameraman who in the comics has a more adversarial relationship with April O’Neil, Megan Fox’s character, but for our purposes, Vernon is still a cameraman who’s helping April, works with her. He’s her cameraman and he’s kind of a solo artist. He does his own thing and as April starts to try to figure out who these vigilantes are, who these turtles are and gets involved in the story, she recruits Vernon.”
Vernon Fenwick fans, what do you think? Is Michael Bay raping your childhood by making Vernon a sidekick for April O’Neil? How about if Vernon ends up helping the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in the final battle?
“He’s reluctant at first,” Arnett continued. “He just wants to get his paycheck and do the easy job and eventually he comes through and starts helping her and goes along for the ride in helping the turtles vanquish the Shredder.”
Participating in big action scenes with turtle actors in performance capture suits doing martial arts was a thrill for Arnett. He described the style director Jonathan Liebesman is aiming for.
“The action is very real and feels [like] we’re used to seeing through the Bourne movies, action that feels really real and hard hitting, like ooh, that looks like it hurt type stuff, and we do that.”