Cinemacon 2015: Paramount's presentation featuring Terminator, MI5, & more
Cinemacon in Las Vegas is underway and today Paramount Pictures kicked things off with their presentation, which focused on what they have for upcoming releases, both throughout the year and into 2016. They presented some clips for TERMINATOR: GENISYS, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE ROGUE NATION, and presentations for upcoming flicks, including DADDY'S HOME, TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES 2, ZOOLANDER 2, and more. Check out the highlights below, but please be aware of potential SPOILERS for some of the clips, as I do go into detail for them.
Arnold himself introduced the TERMINATOR GENISYS presentation, walking out on stage to the tune of some Guns n Roses, rocking a leather jacket and shades. He made note of his "promise" to "be back" in another TERMINATOR film, expressing how the first three were the only one's that mattered (jokingly...kind of) since he was in them (another dig at TERMINATOR: SALVATION, which they continue to distance themselves from in terms of the overall franchise) and how excited he is to be a part of "the next trilogy" of TERMINATOR films. This lines up with what we've been hearing for a while and confirms that the studio is indeed pushing forward in the series and with Schwarzenegger's involvement.
We saw 12 minutes of footage, which consisted of some out-of-sequence bits that really brought the film into full view, while still leaving me perplexed as to what's going on (and in a good way). We see brief glimpses of the initial nuclear war (including a cool shot of the missiles flying through the air from the perspective of a boy on a plane in flight) and the fallout. All of this is narrated by Jai Courtney, who plays Kyle Reese, and we see him as a young boy, very reminiscent of Anton Yelchin's portrayal in SALVATION, and then as a soldier fighting alongside John Connor, as played by Jason Clarke. We see Connor rallying the troops in a "final battle" that storms a Skynet facility just as the original T-800 is sent back to kill Connor's mom. There, we see the discussion of what they should do, when Reese volunteers to go.
From there, we see Reese arrive in (presumably) 1984 where things line up with James Cameron's original. However, things take a slight turn when the cop that starts chasing Reese is revealed to be a T-1000 (played by Byung-hun Lee) who attempts to kill Reese. Shocked by what he sees after shooting the T-1000 we see Emilia Clarke's Sarah Connor crash into the department store and rescue him as they head out on a high speed chase away from the T-1000 in pursuit. Reese is confused as hell and when he sees that the T-800 (Schwarzenegger) is in the truck he freaks out and starts shooting at him, only to have the T-800 knock him out, saying to Connor "I didn't kill him." When Reese awakens, the T-800 is driving and they have a brief conversation in which Sarah reveals her plan, saying something along the lines of "if we can go back and change the past then we can go forward and change the future."
From there, we jump forward and see where Reese and Connor are captured and J.K. Simmons character bursts into a their room, announcing that he wants to help. Not much more on how he plays into the film. We then see the sudden arrival of John Connor as he appears in the future, but in what looks like a present-day timeline. Reese and Connor seem to trust him, but the T-800 (now with white hair) arrives and attacks "John Connor" in which he's revealed to be the skeleton-esque Terminator. We get glimpses of the helicoptor chase, a big battle between the T-800 and Termi-Connor in what appears to be Skynet's Time Travel location, and then some more of the big chase on the bridge, which has a truly bad ass shot of the T-800 stepping out of a moving/skidding cop car and walking in slow motion toward the action.
My overall impression of what we saw was the feeling that this was going to be a totally solid flick, whereas I felt that it would be completely devisive beforehand. The latest trailer worked hard to show us a lot and seemingly reveal more than we should know, but apparantly that's nowhere near the case and the studio still has some cards in the deck they're not ready to reveal (to note there was no footage of Matt Smith's character). Director Alan Taylor looks to have handled the action with a deft touch and I think, more than anything, this is going ot deliver on the "popcorn factor" of a summer movie and I love the fact that I really have no idea what's going on. Everything looks familiar and you think you can predict all that you're about to see, but in reality, it's a total guessing game (and yes, there are rumors abound as to what is happening) and that makes it much more enticing than what seemed initially to be a fairly by the numbers reboot-quel. However, I still dig TERMINATOR: SALVATION, no matter how much they try to make me forget about it.
MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE ROGUE NATION
Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, and Simon Pegg stepped out to promote MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE ROGUE NATION, bringing two extended clips and a montage that really delivered on what we expect from the M:I franchise. Let's be honest here; they really don't have much work to do in selling this thing. If that first trailer didn't do it's job then I don't know what to tell you. It's one of the most consistently great franchises out there and after the initial trailer and the clips we saw today, it appears that director Christopher McQuarrie and co. have delivered another great sequel that can match if not surpass the latest (and arguably greatest) of the series, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - GHOST PROTOCOL.
The first clip we saw featured a sequence where Cruise's Ethan Hunt is captured and must escape imminent torture with the help of Rebecca Ferguson's Ilsa, who appears to be a villain at first. Cruise, handcuffed to a metal bar, is interrogated by a brutish thug (Jens Hultén) who is known as the "Bone Doctor" (or something to that effect) gets the signal from Ilsa that she is going to help him and thus begins a beautifully orchestrated fight/escape sequence in which Ethan and Ilsa work together to take out the bad guys in the room, while attempting to unlock Ethan's handcuffs. It's fun, cool, and with those "Oh shit" moves that are commonly featured in the M:I franchise.
The second clip features Cruise and Benji (Simon Pegg) jumping into a car to chase after Ilsa, who is on a motorcycle. The sequence picks up just after Ethan was "dead" but obviously revivied (second time in the series after MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 3), with Benji asking if he's okay to drive. They hop in the vehicle and give chase with a flock of bad guys on motorcycles giving chase as well. What follows is the same kind of car-eography that we saw McQuarrie put on display in JACK REACHER, and it looks tremendous here. Taking place in Morocco, it was emphasized that Cruise and Pegg were both in the vehicle for all the driving stunts and the close-ups sure to indicate it (Pegg commented that he was "not acting" in those scenes). It's fast, flashy, and pulsing with high-speed car chase energy that kind of defines "edge of your seat" entertainment with actioners like this.
The montage that followed was essentially the trailer and bookended with the clips just makes it that much more clear that MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE ROGUE NATION is going to be another solid win, both for the studio and the franchise. Hey, it's nice to have some flicks to count on, so I have no complaints. After the footage, Cruise stepped out and showed the actual footage taken of the scene in which he's tethered to the A400 plane, which shows the star from the moment the plane takes off on the runway to take off with no editing. Always upping his game for the franchise, it was cool to see Cruise talk over the footage as we watched it unfold and proves once again that he's one of the hardest working guys in Hollywood.
In the end, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE ROGUE NATION is one of the easiest sells of the summer and it's great to see that it's got all the trimmings we've come to know and love from the franchise and maybe with a few surprises to boot.
We got a trailer for the new Will Ferrell/Mark Wahlberg comedy, DADDY'S HOME, which looks to be a lot of fun. Will Ferrell stars as a man that loves being a father to his step kids, but once their real dad, played by Wahlberg, steps back into the picture an intense rivalry to win their affections begins, with both "dad's" going to war with each other. Wahlberg looks every bit the sleazy bad boy, while Ferrell relies on his "vanilla" schtick and it works just as well as it did with THE OTHER GUYS. There's a number of gags that play out, including the sequence where Ferrell beams a basketball at a cheerleader that we saw being filmed a while back. Lots of laugh out loud moments and it looks to be a good step forward for Ferrell after the not-so-well received GET HARD.
This was one of the coolest suprises of the presentation. Ben Stiller, in character as Derek Zoolander, addressed the attendees at Cinemacon (calling it Comic Con) and discussed what the sequel to ZOOLANDER 2 would be (calling the first film a documentary). What followed was a serious of hilariously idiotic ramblings about the film, delivered to perfection by Stiller, showing that he hasn't lost his step with portraying the egotistic male model. Billy Zane stepped in briefly for an awkward moment and Derek revealed another of his trademark looks, this one called PSA (pronounced P-saaa). As a big fan of the first ZOOLANDER, just seeing Stiller in character again was more than enough to fan the flames of excitement to see him back on the big screen. He left it off, saying he hopes that ZOOLANDER 2 "drops like a bomb" then backtracked, saying, "But, y'know, like a good bomb where nobody gets hurt and where money comes out of it and we get to keep it." Funny stuff.
TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES 2
They briefly covered TMNT2, saying that it was currently underway and that we could expect to see some new villains, including Rocksteady and Bebop, which we already knew, but they showed some concept art of both characters and they look ripped right from the old cartoon, rather than the newer versions in the current Nickelodeon version.
Paramount trumpeted their win at the box office last year with TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION, the highest global box office winner of 2014, and reconfirmed the plans to continue the franchise and that Michael Bay was involved (although they did not say if he was directing or not). With that kind of box office win, despite the critical backlash, it's not surprise that there will be an onslaught of Transformers films to follow AOE.
The only other new announcement was that SCOUTS VS. ZOMBIES has been retitled THE SCOUTS GUIDE TO THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE. And that's the goods from Paramount here at Cinemacon.
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|Extra Tidbit:||What upcoming Paramount release are you most anticipating?|