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Finding A Cure For Wellness

“Only when we know what ails us can we hope to find the cure”

From visionary director, Gore Verbinski, A CURE FOR WELLNESS is a chilling and mind-bending psychological thriller. Dane DeHaan stars as Lockhart, a driven Wall Street stockbroker who is sent by his firm to a remote alpine medical spa. Lockhart is on a mission to retrieve the company’s CEO, Pembroke (Harry Groener), a patient at the spa, who has told his staff that he has no intention of returning to New York.  Lockhart arrives at the tranquil sanitarium where the residents are supposedly receiving a miracle cure. In fact though, they seem to be getting sicker. As he investigates the dark and baffling secrets behind the spa, he meets a young woman, the hauntingly beautiful Hannah (Mia Goth), a patient herself. He also gets to know another patient, the eccentric Mrs. Watkins, played by Celia Imrie, who has done some detective work of her own. Soon, Lockhart is diagnosed with the same condition as the other patients by the institution’s director, the ominous Dr. Volmer (Jason Isaacs), and finds that he is trapped in the alpine retreat. Lockhart begins to lose his grip on reality and has to endure unimaginable ordeals during the course of his own ‘treatment’.

In the tradition of Verbinski’s indelible 2002 classic, THE RING, the Academy Award® winning filmmaker brings his inimitable style and vision to A CURE FOR WELLNESS. Atmospheric and visually breathtaking, the film is compelling and thought provoking, exploring the true meaning of wellness and the trappings of avarice and power, while asking what fulfillment really means.

Dane De Haan in A CURE FOR WELLNESS

Embarking on A CURE FOR WELLNESS, Verbinski wanted to make a thriller with the depth, insight and power of classics in the genre that he admired, such as THE SHINING (Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 film), DON’T LOOK NOW (Nicolas Roeg’s 1973 film) and ROSEMARY’S BABY (Roman Polanski’s 1968 film). The idea of a quick fix cure, together with society’s malaise and the obsession with perfect health were topics that fascinated Verbinski, whose films include the hugely successful PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN franchise and the Academy Award® winning animated film, RANGO. “We started exploring the notion of a health spa in the Alps, a wellness center that doesn’t actually make you well,” says Verbinski, “and it slowly evolved from there. It became pretty clear to us that this was going to be a genre piece, and we started playing around with the concept of inevitability. It’s the sense that there is a sickness, a sort of black spot on your x-ray that won’t go away!”

Verbinski sat down with screenwriter Justin Haythe (THE LONE RANGER, REVOLUTIONARY ROAD). “I had an idea bouncing around in my head for some time from various influences and preoccupations, but it mostly came from a suspicion of medicine,” says Haythe, who was inspired by the work of German writer Thomas Mann and by psychiatrist Carl Jung. “The film really concerns the pollution of our minds and bodies in the modern world and our obsession with purity as a result of that.”

 One of Hollywood’s most exciting young actors, the gifted and charismatic Dane DeHaan (KILL YOUR DARLINGS, THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2, LIFE) was thrilled about taking on the role of Lockhart and working with Verbinski. “To listen to Gore’s vision and hear how passionate he was about it, and then to read the script and understand what a challenging role it was—that was irresistible,” says DeHaan. “My character goes through so much in this film, it’s crazy. And this was an opportunity to work with a great filmmaker.”

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Han Solo – Smuggler. Scoundrel. Hero. A New Star Wars Story Begins.

The adventure-filled past of the iconic scoundrel and everyone’s favourite Wookie is going before cameras this month when principal photography on the untitled Han Solo Star Wars Story officially began February 20th at Pinewood Studios, London.

 The movie will explore the duo’s adventures before the events of Star Wars: A New Hope, including their early encounters with that other card-playing rogue from a galaxy far, far away, Lando Calrissian.

 Phil Lord and Christopher Miller are directors co-piloting the movie, with a cast that includes Alden Ehrenreich as Han Solo, Woody Harrelson, Emilia Clarke, Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian, Thandie Newton, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge, with Joonas Suotamo as Chewbacca.

 “Watching such inspired people from all over the world, with such unique voices, come together for the sole purpose of making art, is nothing short of miraculous,” Lord and Miller said. “We can’t think of anything funny to say, because we just feel really moved, and really lucky.”

Crewing the ship will be some of the industry’s top talent, including Academy Award nominee for his work on Arrival, Bradford Young (Director of Photography), Chris Dickens (Editor), Dominic Tuohy (SFX Supervisor), Rob Bredow (VFX Supervisor) and Brad Allan (Action Designer).

 They will be joining returning Star Wars veteran crew members Neal Scanlan (Creature & Droid FX Creative Supervisor), Neil Lamont (Production Designer), Dave Crossman and Glyn Dillon (Co-Costume Designers), Jamie Wilkinson (Prop Master), Lisa Tomblin (Hair), Amanda Knight (Make-Up) and Nina Gold (UK Casting Director).

Written by Lawrence and Jon Kasdan, it will be produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Allison Shearmur, Simon Emanuel and co-produced by Kiri Hart, Susan Towner and Will Allegra. Lawrence Kasdan and Jason McGatlin will executive produce.

The untitled Han Solo Star Wars Story is slated for release in May, 2018.

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‘King Arthur: Legend of the Sword’ Gets New Trailer

Guy Ritchie takes on the ultimate tough guy in KING ARTHUR: LEGEND OF THE SWORD, lending his dynamic style to the new epic fantasy adventure, which stars Charlie Hunnam as the eponymous ruler of the Brits. The film is an iconoclastic take on the classic Excalibur myth, tracing Arthur’s journey from the streets to the throne.

When the child Arthur’s father is murdered, Vortigern (Jude Law), Arthur’s uncle, seizes the crown. Robbed of his birthright and with no idea who he truly is, Arthur comes up the hard way in the back alleys of the city. But once he pulls the sword from the stone, his life is turned upside down and he is forced to acknowledge his true legacy… whether he likes it or not.

The film also stars Astrid Bergès-Frisbey (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides) as Mage; Djimon Hounsou (Blood Diamond, In America) as Bedivere; Aidan Gillen (HBO’s “Game of Thrones”) as Goosefat Bill; and Eric Bana (Star Trek, Munich) as Arthur’s father, King Uther Pendragon.

In UK Cinemas Friday 12th May, 2017.

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‘Inferno’s Ron Howard & Tom Hanks Raise Hell

Following up on the worldwide successes of The Da Vinci Code (2006) and Angels & Demons (2009) is INFERNO, the third highly anticipated adaptation in Dan Brown’s Robert Langdon series of novels.

The film re-teams director Ron Howard, who most recently directed the acclaimed Beatles documentary Eight Days a Week: The Touring Years, with Tom Hanks, who returns in one of his signature roles playing the quick-thinking and resourceful Langdon.  Hanks explains the enduring attraction of the franchise.  “There is something Dan Brown has figured out – everybody likes a good puzzle, especially one you can actually figure out the clues to one at a time and solve,” he says.  “These movies give that to the audience – it is almost an interactive film, and it has been like that since The Da Vinci Code.”

Borrowing its title from Dante’s masterwork, the Latin word for Hell, INFERNO has the added component of a psychological thriller.  In the film, Dr. Robert Langdon wakes up to face his biggest challenge yet – he has lost his memory.  Haunted by feverish visions and intense headaches, he must find out what has happened to him, and why.

Hanks explains, “Hell for Langdon in the movie is both a state of mind and a very physical experience because he is wracked with pain in his head and he is tortured by the fact he is ignorant of the reasons why.”

“Without a doubt, Robert Langdon goes through his own personal hell at the opening of this movie,” says Dan Brown.  ”He wakes up in a hospital room in possession of a mysterious artifact for which people are trying to kill him. He must decipher the artifact and follow a trail of clues to find out who wants him dead and why.  At the end of the day, he realizes the stakes are far greater than his own personal drama – the future of the planet is at stake.”

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Hidden Figures: An Incredible True Story Revealed

HIDDEN FIGURES – in cinemas Friday, 17th February – uncovers the incredible, untold yet true story of a brilliant group of women who changed the foundations of the country for the better — by aiming for the stars. The film recounts the vital history of an elite team of black female mathematicians at NASA who helped win the all-out space race against America’s rivals in the Soviet Union and, at the same time, sent the quest for equal rights and opportunity rocketing forwards.

“Yes, they let women do some things at NASA….”

Everyone knows about the Apollo missions. We can all immediately list the bold male astronauts who took those first giant steps for humankind in space: John Glenn, Alan Shepard and Neil Armstrong. Yet, remarkably, Katherine G. Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson‘s are names not taught in school or even known to most people — even though their daring, smarts and powerful roles as NASA’s ingenious “human computers” were indispensable to advances that allowed for human space flight.

At last, the story of a visionary trio of women who crossed gender, race and professional lines on their way to pioneering cosmic travel comes to the screen starring Oscar-nominee Taraji P. Henson (Empire, Benjamin Button, Hustle And Flow), Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer (Allegiant, Fruitvale Station, The Help), singer Janelle Monae making her motion picture debut and two time Oscar winner Kevin Costner (Black Or White, Field Of Dreams, Dances With Wolves).

Director Theodore Melfi (St. Vincent) brings the women’s rise to the top ranks of aerospace in the thrilling early days of NASA to life via a fast-moving, humour-filled, inspiring entertainment that illuminates both the gutsy quest for Earth’s first, seemingly impossible orbital flight and also the powerful things that can result when women unite.

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John Wick: Chapter 2 Goes Deeper Underground

A surprise hit in 2014, John Wick struck a chord with audiences who yearned to see Keanu Reeves return to full-blown action mode. Earning cult status for its hyper-kinetic take on classic martial arts and gunplay, the film’s global success presented the producers with an inevitable question: What to do for an encore? For Reeves, the answer was clear: more action, a bigger scope and a deeper dive into the title character’s internal struggle.

“In the second film,” says Reeves, “we wanted to expand the underworld, so we’ve introduced a new element. In the original we had the assassins guild known as The Continental, now we have added an association called the High Table, where all of the different organized crime groups from around the world have a seat.”

Producers took pains to stay away from an obvious regurgitation of the first movie’s premise.

“We didn’t want to do some generic thing and go back to the same emotional well,” says producer Basil Iwanyk. “At the same time, we needed to satisfy both male and female fans, as well as audience members who don’t usually watch action movies, by giving them all an emotional way into this movie without repeating ourselves.”

JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 2 was written by Derek Kolstad, who burst on the scene with the original John Wick, his first produced spec screenplay. “When Keanu signed on to play John Wick, it was literally a dream come true,” says the Wisconsin native, who named the title character after his grandfather.

“That the film was such a success and we’ve now made a sequel is even more unbelievable.”

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Find Your Happy With ‘Trolls’

This half-term, as the most smart, funny, irreverent animated comedy of the year, DreamWorks’ TROLLS arrives on DVD and Blu-ray, enter a colourful, wondrous world populated by hilariously unforgettable characters and discover the story of the overly optimistic Trolls, with a constant song on their lips, and the comically pessimistic Bergens, who are only happy when they have trolls in their stomach. Featuring original music from Justin Timberlake, and soon-to-be classic mash-ups of songs from other popular artists, the film stars the voice talents of Anna Kendrick, Justin Timberlake, Russell Brand, James Corden, Kunal Nayyar, Ron Funches, Icona Pop, Gwen Stefani, and many more. DreamWorks’ TROLLS is a fresh, broad comedy filled with music, heart and hair-raising adventures.

TROLLS can be enjoyed by youngsters as a unique world rich with unforgettable characters, music, humour, adventure and colour; 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.

That’s a potent and relevant idea, especially in today’s world, which has largely given way to negativity, fear and imbalance. The story of TROLLS suggests that each of us can bring change through positive thinking and actions, while highlighting the importance of doing the right thing, even-or especially-when facing formidable challenges.

Happiness was foremost in the minds of TROLLS director Mike Mitchell and co-director Walt Dohrn, even during the earliest stages of story discussions with screenwriters/co-producers Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger and producer Gina Shay.

The two filmmakers had worked together on DreamWorks Animation’s blockbuster Shrek franchise, and their familiarity with the beloved ogres of that world led them to their distant cousins, the Trolls.

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