Cinemacon 2016: Lionsgate presentation shows off John Wick 2, Nerve, & more!
Lionsgate brought a few goodies for the Cinemacon crowd today, including some first or extended looks at some of their most notable titles, while making a little magic at the same time - quite literally. It was a short batch of sneak peeks, but enough to make you mark your calendars for the best-looking ones. Here's what they showcased:
BOO! A MADEA HALLOWEEN
There is an audience for Tyler Perry's brand of comedy with these films and I hat tip his success in keeping that foothold, but the Madea series has always been a really bad variation on MRS. DOUBTFIRE that somehow got a free pass to keep making sequels until infinity. If you dig it, I don't begrudge you. I may question your taste, but hey, I love SAVING SILVERMAN, so there's that. BOO! A MADEA HALLOWEEN hits on October 21st, 2016.
POWER RANGERS, ROBIN HOOD, and MONOPOLY were all mentioned as projects in development and heading our way in 2017, but no footage was shown.
From the directors of CATFISH comes this new thriller that features an online truth-or-dare game where you can either be a player or a watcher. If you're a player then you basically complete tasks sent to you online for a cash award and the stakes keep going up the longer you play. The film stars Emma Roberts and Dave Franco as two strangers who start playing the game and are then drawn into it together. The trailer for the film showed a playfulness to it for a good while, which made it seem almost like a coming-of-age film, but then goes into thriller territory as the dares get more complex and dangerous and puts their lives at risk. Conceptually it's a great idea for a film and both Roberts and Franco seem to be up to task in selling it, so it shows some real promise that could easily take off or fall flat, depending on how they deliver on the concept in the end. NERVE opens on September 16th, 2016.
Next up, we got a look at director Peter Berg's take on the real-world disaster of the DEEPWATER HORIZON oil spill in 2010 that has gone down as the worst in U.S. history. Mark Wahlberg stars alongside Kurt Russell, Kate Hudson, Dylan O'Brien, Gina Rodriguez, John Malkovich, and Ethan Suplee in what looks to be one hell of a harrowing film. The first teaser didn't reveal much, but the full-lenth trailer we were shown takes the film deep into disaster pic territory with explosions, destruction, and heroics under duress. Berg knows his way not only around the camera, but how to tap into the emotional aspect for these real-world stories (see FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS and LONE SURVIVOR) and I'm looking forward to seeing them bring this to life. DEEPWATER HORIZON hits theaters on September 30th, 2016.
LA LA LAND
We got our first peek at LA LA LAND, the new "love letter to L.A." musical from WHIPLASH director Damien Chazelle, which stars Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling as a couple that fall in love in the City of Angels. Filled with dance numbers, songs, and non-musical scenes, the film looks to be a fun little trip for those that are looking for a modern-day musical with a pair of young, hot stars. Stone and Gosling have proven their chemistry before and this looks to capitalize on that, be it mostly through song and dance. While I loved Chazelle's WHIPLASH, I'm a little more leery of a straight musical, but I'm positive this will appeal strongly to its demographic. LA LA LAND dances into theaters on December 16th, 2016.
Ah, now this is what you want to hear about, am I right? It was certainly the one that pinged the most on my radar, especially after the first one kicked all forms of ass. Keanu Reeves stepped out to introduce our first peek at the film, which takes the titular badass assassin to Rome where he seems to find himself in trouble yet again, this time squaring off against the likes of Common and Ruby Rose with returning (surviving?) characters Lance Reddick, John Leguizamo, and Ian McShane popping up. We also have a MATRIX reunion with Reeves' former co-star from that franchise, Laurence Fishburne, showing up as an ally that helps arm John up to take out the trash.
We're treated to all the stuff we expect to see in the sequel, including explosions, gun battles, shattered glass, hand-to-hand battles, car chases, bike chases, and numerous sequences of JOHN WICK methodically taking out bad guys in his signature no-bullshit, hardcore style. And then some. At one point, Wick says "Whoever comes, I'll kill them. I'll kill them all." Ah, you gotta love it. This could easily turn into a continuing franchise and it's the closest thing we have to the old-school action flicks of the '80's but with a modern intensity in the action department.
"You owe me, John."
"You don't want me to owe you."
I love it. Can't wait for this flick. Well, I'll have to, but only until February 10, 2017.
And that's it for Lionsgate! Again, not a ton of titles showcased, but what was shown was certainly a good batch of worthwhile titles.
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