Men in Black: International leads quiet North American box office

The new Men in Black sequel has climbed its way to the top of the North American box office. Men in Black: International, starring Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson, has debuted with a disappointing $28.5 million (£22.6 million), falling short of an…

The new Men in Black sequel has climbed its way to the top of the North American box office.

Men in Black: International, starring Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson, has debuted with a disappointing $28.5 million (£22.6 million), falling short of analysts’ $30 million (£23.8 million) expectations.

It also marks the lowest opening to date for a film in the sci-fi/action franchise – each of the first three movies, which originally starred Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, earned at least $50 million (£39.7 million) in its launch weekend.

The latest release, which was hurt by less-than-positive reviews, fared better outside of the North American market, picking up $74 million (£58.8 million) to take it to number one on the international box office chart.

Despite its slow start, the Men in Black 3 sequel grossed enough to take pole position in North America, forcing its closest competitor, the animated The Secret Life of Pets 2, to slip to number two with a second weekend take of $23.8 million (£18.9 million).

Aladdin, Dark Phoenix, and Elton John biopic Rocketman round out the new top five, respectively.

Men in Black: International wasn’t the only sequel to suffer from sluggish box office sales this weekend – Shaft, the sequel to Samuel L. Jackson’s 2000 movie of the same name, only managed to snag sixth place with a dismal $8.3 million (£6.6 million).

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Guy Ritchie only wants to make musicals after Aladdin

Guy Ritchie loved making Aladdin so much he now wants to direct musicals rather than his usual gangster fare.The Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels filmmaker was a left-field pick to direct Disney’s new live-action remake of their animated 1992 clas…

Guy Ritchie loved making Aladdin so much he now wants to direct musicals rather than his usual gangster fare.

The Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels filmmaker was a left-field pick to direct Disney’s new live-action remake of their animated 1992 classic, but he’s now in love with the genre.

“I’d be very happy if all I made was musicals now,” he told British movie magazine Empire. “I’m quite heavily led by music anyway, but it was refreshing to embark on something so unabashed in its musical ambition.”

One ambition the father of five had was to make a family blockbuster – and it’s an undertaking he relished wholeheartedly.

“I loved doing this,” the 50-year-old said. “There’s something about it being the tonality of a family film that made it incredibly pleasant. Also the scale of it was fun. The musical aspect was a new challenge for me. I had to think in a way I hadn’t thought before. All in all, it’s probably the most rewarding film I’ve ever made.”

In the movie, Will Smith takes on the role of the Genie, famously voiced by Robin Williams in the animated version.

The Men in Black star revealed that he was initially sceptical about remaking the movie, but Ritchie has won him over and he thinks cinemagoers are in for a treat.

“When I first heard Guy Ritchie was doing it, that seemed a really aggressive choice for a Disney movie,” he mused. “Once we’d met and we’d talked about it, I realised how brilliant it was. He gives a real edge to the Disney product. I think people will really notice the Guy Ritchie signature on it. He is creating a genre unto himself.”

Aladdin will debut in cinemas this month (May19).

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Men in Black and Jump Street crossover film no longer in development

A planned Men in Black and Jump Street crossover movie has been scrapped.Executives at Sony Pictures confirmed plans for the project in March (16), with rumours swirling that The Muppets director James Bobin was in talks to helm. Tentatively titled MIB…

A planned Men in Black and Jump Street crossover movie has been scrapped.

Executives at Sony Pictures confirmed plans for the project in March (16), with rumours swirling that The Muppets director James Bobin was in talks to helm.

Tentatively titled MIB 23, it was believed that 21 Jump Street actors Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum would reprise their roles as Schmidt and Jenko, though original Men in Black stars Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones would be replaced.

However, in an interview with Empire magazine, Men in Black producer Walter Parkes confirmed that the film is no longer being developed.

“We gave it a shot. It turned out to be an impossible match-up,” he said.

Jonah dreamed up the idea for the crossover between the alien movies and comedy cop franchise, with the possibility of the film first mooted in emails leaked after Sony Pictures, which owns the rights to both film series, was hacked in 2014.

But later in 2016, the Mid90s filmmaker explained in a chat with Postmedia Network that he doubted that the flick would get made.

“It’s too complicated. They’re trying to make all the deals, but it’s kind of impossible with all the Men in Black stuff. The Jump Street films were so fun to make and the whole joke of them was they were making fun of remakes and sequels and reboots and then now it’s become a giant sequel, reboot,” he said. “It’s almost become what we were making fun of and it’s hard to maintain that joke when it’s so high stakes.”

Even though the Men in Black and Jump Street crossover has officially been abandoned, Sony bosses have proceeded with other films in the respective franchises.

New spin-off film Men in Black: International, starring Tessa Thompson and Chris Hemsworth, is set to be released in June (19), while Tiffany Haddish is reportedly in talks to appear in a female-focused 21 Jump Street reboot.

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A Clockwork Orange title designer Pablo Ferro dies aged 83

Pablo Ferro, famed for his iconic title design work on movies such as A Clockwork Orange and Bullitt, has died at the age of 83.The Cuban-American award-winning designer died of complications from pneumonia on Friday (15Nov18) in Sedona, Arizona, his f…

Pablo Ferro, famed for his iconic title design work on movies such as A Clockwork Orange and Bullitt, has died at the age of 83.

The Cuban-American award-winning designer died of complications from pneumonia on Friday (15Nov18) in Sedona, Arizona, his family confirmed, according to editors at The Hollywood Reporter.

Ferro, a self-taught artist whose signature style incorporated montage-like title sequences, creative stylistic typefaces, and quick-cut editing, worked on over 100 films including Stanley Kubrick classics A Clockwork Orange and Dr. Strangelove, Steve McQueen’s Bullitt, Men In Black, and The Thomas Crown Affair (1968), and served as a supervising editor on the music video for Michael Jackson’s 1983 hit Beat It.

Ferro, who was raised on his grandfather’s farm in Cuba, moved to New York City with his family when he was 12. He began his career in design in the mid-’50s, working with Disney animator Vladimir ‘Bill’ Tytla, who became his mentor.

He was also a contemporary of late Marvel founder Stan Lee, working with him early in his career on a series of sci-fi and adventure comics.

In the ’60s he and fellow artists Fred Mogubgub and Lew Schwartz launched their own company, creating visuals for advertising campaigns, before he got the call from Kubrick which kick-started his career in Hollywood.

Ferro’s work in title design has appeared in a dozen Academy Award-winning movies including Philadelphia and Good Will Hunting, and has also won him numerous Clio awards for creative excellence in advertising, design and communication, and a DGA Excellence in Film Award.

He later went on to create Pablo Ferro Films, served as a creative consultant on Hal Ashby’s 1983 Rolling Stones concert film Let’s Spend the Night Together and directed his own 1992 feature Me Myself and I, starring George Segal and JoBeth Williams.

The designer is survived by his former wife, Susan, as well as his children Joy Ferro-Moore and Allen Ferro.

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Will Smith and Martin Lawrence officially back for Bad Boys 3

Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are celebrating after getting the green light to film Bad Boys 3. The actors have been trying to turn their dreams of a third instalment of the action comedy into a reality for years, and in early October (18), studio ch…

Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are celebrating after getting the green light to film Bad Boys 3.

The actors have been trying to turn their dreams of a third instalment of the action comedy into a reality for years, and in early October (18), studio chiefs at Sony Pictures were said to be close to signing off on the project, 15 years after Bad Boys II hit theatres.

On Thursday (01Nov18), Will and Martin teamed up to announce the sequel is now official.

“Yo, yo, I’m telling y’all… this is crazy. Wait, just wait…,” Will teased at the start of his Instagram video, which was shot on a beach.

Martin then stepped into the camera frame, as the Men in Black star excitedly declared, “It’s official, it’s official, baby! Bad Boys 3, it’s happening!”

“We’re making it happen,” smiled Martin.

The longtime pals didn’t share any further information about the movie, as Will cut short the clip before they could spill any secrets.

“Yo, that’s it, no more, y’all can’t handle no more of that (sic),” he quipped.

In the accompanying caption, Will wrote, “It’s been a LOOOONG (sic) time Coming. But now it’s Here! @BadBoys For Life. We back!! @martinlawrence”.

“#weridetogetherwedietogether,” commented Martin as he quoted a line from Bad Boys II.

The film, tentatively titled Bad Boys for Life, will feature Will reprising his role as Miami Police Department Detective Mike Lowrey, opposite Martin as his partner, Detective Marcus Burnett.

It’s not yet known if Gabrielle Union will be involved in the new movie, but she ‘liked’ the Instagram post.

The actress was introduced as Martin’s onscreen sister, Special Agent Sydney ‘Syd’ Burnett in 2003’s Bad Boys II. She is currently shooting a TV spin-off, set in Los Angeles.

A director for Bad Boys For Life has yet to be confirmed, but filming is expected to begin in early 2019.

The franchise, which began with Bad Boys in 1995, has been a big hit so far, grossing over $400 million (£307 million) at the global box office.

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Mission: Impossible star Rebecca Ferguson set for Men in Black, Doctor Sleep roles

Rebecca Ferguson has bulked up her resume by reportedly landing roles in two of the most highly-anticipated films. Sources tell Deadline the Mission: Impossible – Fallout star has booked the lead female role in the Men in Black spin-off, opposite Chri…

Rebecca Ferguson has bulked up her resume by reportedly landing roles in two of the most highly-anticipated films.

Sources tell Deadline the Mission: Impossible – Fallout star has booked the lead female role in the Men in Black spin-off, opposite Chris Hemsworth, while also lining up a role opposite Ewan McGregor in The Shining sequel, Doctor Sleep.

The Men in Black movie, to be directed by The Fate of the Furious’ F. Gary Gray, will be the fourth instalment of the alien-fighting franchise. Original stars Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, who played Agent J and Agent K respectively, reteamed for the third instalment back in 2012, but neither are expected back for the new movie.

Plot details about the new feature are being kept under wraps, although the story is believed to follow a London-based team of Men in Black secret agents, who become involved in a murder mystery that sends them travelling the globe.

Liam Neeson, Tessa Thompson, Rafe Spall, and Kumail Nanjiani, have also been cast in the movie, which began production in the U.K. last month (Jul18).

Meanwhile, Ferguson will also star as cult leader Rose the Hat in The Shining sequel Doctor Sleep. Ewan McGregor has already signed on to play the grown-up Danny Torrance in the adaptation of Stephen King’s novel, which will revisit the plot of director Stanley Kubrick’s horror classic, set in a spooky, remote hotel.

Mike Flanagan will direct the sequel after reworking Akiva Goldsman’s adapted screenplay for the project. Goldsman will serve as the film’s executive producer.

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Emma Thompson joins Men in Black spin-off movie

Emma Thompson is set to return to the Men in Black franchise.The British actress will reprise her role as Agent O from Men in Black 3 in the upcoming spin-off film, according to Variety. To be directed by The Fate of the Furious helmer F. Gary Gray, th…

Emma Thompson is set to return to the Men in Black franchise.

The British actress will reprise her role as Agent O from Men in Black 3 in the upcoming spin-off film, according to Variety.

To be directed by The Fate of the Furious helmer F. Gary Gray, the untitled movie is the fourth instalment of the alien-fighting franchise.

Original stars Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, who played Agent J and Agent K respectively, reteamed for the third movie back in 2012, tens years after the second film.

Plot details about the new feature are being kept under wraps, though the story is believed to follow a London-based team of Men in Black secret agents who become involved in a murder mystery that sends them travelling the globe.

Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson are set to have central roles in the flick, while it was previously reported that Liam Neeson will play the head of the Men in Black organisation in London.

Rafe Spall, Kumail Nanjiani and French dancers Les Twins, Laurent Nicolas and Larry Nicolas Bourgeois, have also been cast in unknown parts. Production is due to begin in the U.K. this month (Jul18).

Walter F. Parkes and Laurie MacDonald, who produced the original movies as well as the animated TV series, are back as producers and Steven Spielberg is returning as executive producer.

The script is being penned by Iron Man screenwriters Matt Holloway and Art Marcum, with the movie slated to hit cinemas from June 2019.

Double Oscar-winning actress Emma was most recently seen onscreen in Beauty and the Beast and The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected). She will soon begin promoting Rowan Atkinson spy flick Johnny English Strikes Again, in which she plays the Prime Minister, and drama The Children Act.

Emma is also wrapping work on The Voyage of Doctor Dolittle, where she voices the character of Polynesia, as well as comedy Late Night, Mindy Kaling’s feature about a late-night talk show host who suspects that she may soon be losing her long-running show.

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Liam Neeson linked to Men in Black spin-off

Liam Neeson is in talks to join the upcoming Men in Black spin-off.Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson have already signed on to the currently untitled film, which is being helmed by Straight Outta Compton director F. Gary Gray. According to The Hollyw…

Liam Neeson is in talks to join the upcoming Men in Black spin-off.

Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson have already signed on to the currently untitled film, which is being helmed by Straight Outta Compton director F. Gary Gray.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, 65-year-old Neeson is close to signing on to play the head of Men in Black, the organisation which monitors extraterrestrial interactions on Earth, in London.

The franchise has so far spawned three films, with original stars Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, who played Agent J and Agent K respectively, reteaming for the third instalment in 2012, 10 years after the last film.

Walter F. Parkes and Laurie MacDonald, who produced the original movies as well as the animated TV series, are back as producers and Steven Spielberg is returning as executive producer.

The script is being penned by Iron Man screenwriters Matt Holloway and Art Marcum, with the movie slated to hit cinemas from May 2019.

Since starring in Taken in 2008, Neeson has become the go-to actor for action flicks.

Earlier this year, while promoting The Commuter, the Northern Irish star dismissed rumours he was hanging up his action boots.

“I’m planning to do a couple more in this genre, one more with Jaume (Collet-Serra, director) next year, all being well,” he said. “I’d like to think that I know when an audience is going to look at me and go, ‘Oh come on! You can’t outrun a train! You can’t outrun a horse! Don’t be stupid.’ So, then I’ll get out of that genre, I think.

“But, at the moment, I’m fit and I keep healthy. We’ll see how it goes.”

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Tessa Thompson joining Chris Hemsworth in Men in Black spin-off

Tessa Thompson is set to appear alongside Chris Hemsworth in the upcoming Men in Black spin-off.The 34-year-old actress will reteam with her Thor: Ragnarok co-star in Sony Pictures’ reboot of the popular sci-fi franchise, according to The Hollywood Rep…

Tessa Thompson is set to appear alongside Chris Hemsworth in the upcoming Men in Black spin-off.

The 34-year-old actress will reteam with her Thor: Ragnarok co-star in Sony Pictures’ reboot of the popular sci-fi franchise, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Plot details about the flick are currently being kept under wraps, though it will be directed by Fate of the Furious filmmaker F. Gary Gray from a script by Punisher: War Zone screenwriters Matt Holloway and Art Macum.

No other casting details have been announced, but studio executives are looking to release the film in mid-2019.

Walter F. Parkes and Laurie MacDonald will produce, while Steven Spielberg is expected to act as an executive producer.

The original Men in Black was released in 1997 and followed the exploits of Agent J and Agent K, as played by Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, who were members of a top-secret organisation established to monitor and police alien activity on Earth.

Two further films were unveiled in 2002 and 2012, and it is not yet known if either Smith or Jones will reprise their roles in the new film.

However, it has been reported that the reboot will be in the same vein as the recent Jurassic Park revival, Jurassic World. The first instalment of the action-adventure films was launched in 2015 and introduced new characters, as portrayed by Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard.

Thompson most recently made her mark in Taika Waititi’s Thor: Ragnarok, in which she played Valkyrie, and as Josie Radek in Annihilation, appearing opposite Natalie Portman and Jennifer Jason Leigh.

She is currently shooting boxing movie Creed II and will next be seen on-screen in the next season of TV show Westworld, in which she plays Charlotte Hale.

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Chris Hemsworth in negotiations for Men in Black spin-off

Action man Chris Hemsworth has been tapped to lead a new Men in Black spin-off movie. The Thor star is in early talks to join the Sony Pictures franchise revamp, which will be directed by The Fate of the Furious filmmaker F. Gary Gray, according to Th…

Action man Chris Hemsworth has been tapped to lead a new Men in Black spin-off movie.

The Thor star is in early talks to join the Sony Pictures franchise revamp, which will be directed by The Fate of the Furious filmmaker F. Gary Gray, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Gray will work from a script written by Iron Man screenwriters Matt Holloway and Art Marcum.

The original Men in Black films starred Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith as unlikely alien-fighting sidekicks, with the first movie becoming a smash hit upon its release in 1997, raking in $589 million (£428 million) at the global box office.

It spawned a sequel in 2002 and third installment in 2012, which also featured Josh Brolin, with the trilogy banking more than $1.5 billion worldwide.

Neither Jones nor Smith are returning for the fresh take on the sci-fi franchise, which will instead centre on a new pair of agents working for the secretive government agency.

Steven Spielberg will executive produce the forthcoming Men in Black project, which is set to hit cinemas in June, 2019.

If Hemsworth signs on for the film, it won’t be his first blockbuster franchise – he is also a key member of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, reprising his role as superhero Thor for the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War, which opens in May (18).

He is also due to return to outer space for another Star Trek movie, in which he plays George Kirk, the father of Chris Pine’s character, Captain James T. Kirk.

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