Studio News: Walt Disney Studios announces fall slate
Compiled by R. Kurt Osenlund, The Good Life film critic
Release Date: September 24, 2010
Cast: Kristen Bell, Jamie Lee Curtis, Sigourney Weaver, Odette Yustman, Kristin Chenoweth, Victor Garber and Betty White.
Director: Andy Fickman
Successful PR pro Marni (Kristen Bell) heads home for her older brother’s (Jimmy Wolk) wedding and discovers that he’s marrying her high school arch nemesis (Odette Yustman), who’s conveniently forgotten their problematic past. Then the bride’s jet-setting aunt (Sigourney Weaver) bursts in and Marni’s not-so-jet-setting mom (Jamie Lee Curtis) comes face to face with her own high school rival. The claws come out and old wounds are opened in this crazy comedy that proves that not all rivalries are forever.
Kristen Bell reteams with Director Andy Fickman—they previously worked together in New York in theater and later on the cult film and Emmy Award®-winning “Reefer Madness,” which premiered at Sundance, debuted on Showtime and won the Deauville Film Festival’s Audience Jury Award. Film veterans Jamie Lee Curtis (“Halloween” 1978) and Sigourney Weaver (“Alien” 1979) got their breakout movie roles within six months of each other. They have never worked together until now. Producer John J. Strauss penned the hit comedy “Something About Mary.”
Kristin Chenoweth recently won her first Emmy Award® for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy (“Pushing Daisies”).
WALT DISNEY PICTURES
Website and Mobile Site: Disney.com/Secretariat
Release Date: October 8, 2010
Cast: Diane Lane, John Malkovich, Dylan Walsh, James Cromwell, Kevin Connolly, Nelsan Ellis, Dylan Baker, Margo Martindale, Otto Thorwarth, Fred Thompson, AJ Michalka and Scott Glenn Director: Director: Randall Wallace
Based on the remarkable true story, “Secretariat” chronicles the spectacular journey of the 1973 Triple Crown winner. Housewife and mother Penny Chenery (Diane Lane) agrees to take over her ailing father’s Virginia-based Meadow Stables, despite her lack of horse-racing knowledge. Against all odds, Chenery—with the help of veteran trainer Lucien Laurin (John Malkovich)—manages to navigate the male-dominated business, ultimately fostering the first Triple Crown winner in 25 years and what may be the greatest racehorse of all time.
In 1973, Secretariat became the first U.S. Triple Crown champion in 25 years, setting race records that still stand today in the Kentucky Derby and the Belmont Stakes.
Penny Chenery, now 87, is an integral resource in the making of the film. She also appears as an extra in one of the film’s scenes. In 1973, Secretariat graced the covers of three magazines the same week: Time, Newsweek and Sports Illustrated. Director Randall Wallace, whose directorial credits include “We Were Soldiers,” is the Oscar®- and Golden Globe®-nominated screenwriter of “Braveheart.” In 1999, the U.S. Postal Service unveiled a 33-cent postage stamp with Secretariat’s image.
WALT DISNEY PICTURES
Release Date: November 24, 2010
Voice Cast: Mandy Moore, Zachary Levi, Donna Murphy, Ron Perlman, M.C. Gainey, Jeffrey Tambor, Brad Garrett, Paul F. Tompkins
Walt Disney Pictures presents “Tangled,” one of the most hilarious, hair-raising tales ever told. When the kingdom’s most wanted—and most charming—bandit Flynn Rider (voice of Zachary Levi) hides out in a mysterious tower, he’s taken hostage by Rapunzel (voice of Mandy Moore), a beautiful and feisty tower-bound teen with 70 feet of magical, golden hair. Flynn’s curious captor, who’s looking for her ticket out of the tower where she’s been locked away for years, strikes a deal with the handsome thief and the unlikely duo sets off on an action-packed escapade, complete with a super-cop horse, an over-protective chameleon and a gruff gang of pub thugs. In theaters this holiday season in Disney Digital 3D™, “Tangled” is a story of adventure, heart, humor and hair—lots of hair.
“Tangled” marks Walt Disney Pictures’ 50th full-length animated feature.
Byron Howard directed Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “Bolt,” the 2008 animated comedy adventure that grossed more than $300 million worldwide and earned two Golden Globe® nominations (Best Animated Film and Best Original Song), and an Oscar® nomination for Best Animated Feature. Nathan Greno, a 14-year Disney animation veteran, served as head of story on “Bolt,” and has animation and/or story credits on such other animated features as “Mulan,” “Brother Bear,” and “Meet the Robinsons.” “Tangled” features new songs and a score by eight-time Oscar®-winning composer/songwriter Alan Menken “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Aladdin,” “Pocahontas,” and, most recently, “Enchanted.” Lyrics are by Glenn Slater, a 2008 Tony® and Grammy® nominee for his work on “The Little Mermaid.”
WALT DISNEY PICTURES
Release Date: December 17, 2010
Cast: Jeff Bridges, Garrett Hedlund, Olivia Wilde, Bruce Boxleitner, James Frain, Beau Garrett and Michael Sheen
“TRON: Legacy” is a 3D high-tech adventure set in a digital world that’s unlike anything ever captured on the big screen. Sam Flynn (Garrett Hedlund), a rebellious 27-year-old, is haunted by the mysterious disappearance of his father Kevin Flynn (Oscar®- and Golden Globe®-winner Jeff Bridges), a man once known as the world’s leading video-game developer. When Sam investigates a strange signal sent from the old Flynn’s Arcade—a signal that could only come from his father—he finds himself pulled into a digital world where Kevin has been trapped for 20 years. With the help of the fearless warrior Quorra (Olivia Wilde), father and son embark on a life-or-death journey across a visually-stunning cyber universe—a universe created by Kevin himself that has become far more advanced with never-before-imagined vehicles, weapons, landscapes and a ruthless villain who will stop at nothing to prevent their escape. Presented in Disney Digital 3D™ and scored by Grammy Award®-winning electronic music duo Daft Punk, “TRON: Legacy” hits U.S. theaters on Dec. 17, 2010 in Disney Digital 3D™ and IMAX® 3D.
Producer Steve Lisberger co-wrote and directed the original “TRON” (1982).
Jeff Bridges, winner of both the Oscar® and Golden Globe® for his role in “Crazy Heart,” reprises the role of Kevin Flynn, which he originated in “TRON” (1982). Bruce Boxleitner reprises the roles of Alan Bradley and Tron, which he originated in “TRON” (1982). Grammy Award®-winning Daft Punk is composing the music for “TRON: Legacy.” “TRON: Legacy” truly embraces today’s available technology. Among other firsts, it is the first 3D movie to integrate a fully digital head and body based upon an existing actor, creating the younger version of Jeff Bridges' character; it’s the first movie to make extensive use self-illuminated costumes; it’s the first movie to create molded costumes using digital sculpture exclusively, creating molds directly from computer files using CNC (Computer Numerical Cutting) technology; it’s the first 3D movie shot with 35mm lenses and full-35mm chip cameras; and it’s the first movie to record uncompressed HD Video to Hard Drive.
TOUCHSTONE PICTURES/MIRAMAX FILMS
Release Date: December 17, 2010 (expansion)
Cast: Helen Mirren, Russell Brand, Alfred Molina, Djimon Hounsou, David Strathairn, Chris Cooper, Alan Cumming, Ben Whishaw, Reeve Carney, Felicity Jones, Tom Conti
Director: Julie Taymor
In her big-screen adaptation of Shakespeare's mystical thriller “The Tempest,” Academy Award®–nominated Julie Taymor (“Across the Universe,” “Frida,” “Titus”) brings an original dynamic to the story by changing the gender of the sorcerer Prospero into the sorceress Prospera, portrayed by Oscar® winner Helen Mirren (“The Queen”). Prospera’s journey spirals through vengeance to forgiveness as she reigns over a magical island, cares for her young daughter, Miranda, and unleashes her powers against shipwrecked enemies in this exciting, masterly mix of romance, tragicomedy and the supernatural.
Notes: Julie Taymor is an Academy Award®–nominated and Tony Award®–winning director. She won Tony Awards for Best Director and Costume Design for the Broadway version of “The Lion King.” “The Tempest” is Julie Taymor’s second big-screen Shakespeare film adaptation. “Titus Andronicus” was her first, which became her 1999 film “Titus,” starring Anthony Hopkins. Academy Award®–winner Helen Mirren is no stranger to Shakespearean film adaptations, having starred in many for both film and television, but, thanks to Julie Taymor’s vision, this is the first time Mirren will play a lead character whose gender was changed from the original play, allowing her to define the classic role from a whole new perspective.
2010 marks the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.”
Website and Mobile site: thedebtmovie.com
Release Date: December 29, 2010
Cast: Helen Mirren, Sam Worthington, Jessica Chastain, Jesper Christensen, Marton Csokas, with Ciaran Hinds and Tom Wilkinson
Director: John Madden
Helen Mirren and Sam Worthington star in “The Debt,” the powerful story of Rachel Singer, a former Mossad agent who endeavored to capture and bring to trial a notorious Nazi war criminal—the Surgeon of Birkenau—in a secret Israeli mission that ended with his death on the streets of East Berlin. Now, 30 years later, a man claiming to be the doctor has surfaced, and Rachel must go back to Eastern Europe to uncover the truth. Overwhelmed by haunting memories of her younger self and her two fellow agents, the still-celebrated heroine must relive the trauma of those events and confront the debt she has incurred.
“The Debt” is based on the 2007 Israeli film “Ha-Hov”. Actress Helen Mirren has received four Academy Award® nominations, winning the Oscar® for her performance in the 2006 film “The Queen.” For the same role, Mirren also won a Golden Globe®, BAFTA, Critic’s Choice Award and Screen Actors Guild Award®. Actor Sam Worthington portrays one of the agents at the time of the mission. Worthington’s recent credits include “Clash of the Titans” and “Avatar.”
Director John Madden’s credits include the Oscar®-winning “Shakespeare in Love,” as well as “Proof” and “Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.”