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What's New On Netflix Streaming In June


brad pitt soldiers world war z

It's a new month, and that means a bunch of awesome new movies and television shows being added to the Netflix catalog.

This month's list has plenty of excellent movies and shows — and some not so excellent — but there's likely something here to satisfy any taste. Some of our favorites are "Apocalypse Now Redux"— the Francis Ford Coppola masterpiece which added much more in a re-release of the original 1979 Vietnam war classic — the inspirational film "Rudy," and the Tom Clancy spy-thriller "Clear and Present Danger."

Then of course, there are some newer flicks worth checking out, such as "World War Z" and "Lawless." Bottom line: Grab some popcorn, because there's plenty to choose from.

Here's the full list:

Available on June 1:

  • "Apocalypse Now Redux" (2001)
  • "Barbershop" (2002)
  • "Carrie" (1976)
  • "Clear and Present Danger" (1994)
  • "Cold Mountain" (2003)
  • "El Dorado" (1966)
  • "Ever After: A Cinderella Story" (1998)
  • "Funny Lady" (1975)
  • "Harriet the Spy" (1996)
  • "I.Q." (1994)
  • "Left Behind: The Movie" (2000)
  • "Reign Over Me" (2007)
  • "Rudy" (1993)
  • "Swept Away" (2002)
  • "The Adventures of Milo and Otis" (1989)
  • "The Craft" (1996)
  • "The Returned" (2013)
  • "The Stepford Wives" (2004)
  • "The Triplets of Belleville" (2003)
  • "Trailer Park Boys Live In F**kin' Dublin" (2014)
  • "Trailer Park Boys: Say Goodnight to the Bad Guys" (2010)

Available on June 2:

  • "Sherlock": Season 3

Available on June 3:

  • "Devil’s Knot" (2013)
  • "The Glades": Season 4

Available on June 4:

  • "Romeo & Juliet" (2013)

Available on June 6:

  • "Girl Most Likely" (2012)
  • "Luther": Season 3 (2011)
  • "Orange Is the New Black": Season 2 (2014)

Available on June 7:

  • "The Art of the Steal" (2013)

Available on June 10:

  • "Bonnie & Clyde" (2013)
  • "One Direction: Clevver's Ultimate Fan Guide" (2013)
  • "Pretty Little Liars": Season 4 (2013)

Available on June 13:

  • "World War Z" (2013)

Available on June 14:

  • "Toddlers & Tiaras": Season 7 (2012)

Available on June 15:

  • "Return to Nim's Island" (2013)
  • "The Pirate Fairy" (2014)

Available on June 16:

  • "Jane Eyre" (2011)

Available on June 17:

  • "Heartland": Season 5 (2011)
  • "Real Husbands of Hollywood": Season 2 (2014)
  • "Wilfred": Season 3 (2013)

Available on June 18:

  • "Oldboy" (2013)

Available on June 20:

  • "Comedy Bang! Bang!": Season 2 (2012)

Available on June 22:

  • "Copper": Season 2 (2013)

Available on June 23:

  • "Tarzan" (1999)
  • "Tarzan 2" (2005)

Available on June 24:

  • "Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me" (2013)
  • "Gambit" (2012)
  • "Wolf Creek 2" (2013)
  • "XXX: State of the Union" (2005)

Available on June 27:

  • "Turbo FAST": Season 1 (2013) – 5 additional episodes!

Available on June 29:

  • "Lawless" (2012)

Available on June 30:

  • "My Girl" (1991)
  • "My Girl 2" (1994)
  • "Sophie's Choice" (1982)

SEE ALSO: Chelsea Handler In Talks For A Show On Netflix

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'Maleficent' Destroyed Seth MacFarlane's Comedy At The Box Office This Weekend


angelina jolie maleficent

Seth MacFarlane's comedy was no match for Disney's "Maleficent" this weekend.

The reimagining of the 1959 animated picture "Sleeping Beauty" starring Angelina Jolie had a huge $70 million opening weekend at theaters.

Worldwide, it took in more than $170 million.

That's the largest opening weekend Jolie has ever had for a film. Previously, "The Wanted" and "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" held those records with more than $50 million.

The estimated $200 million movie needed a big opening weekend. "Maleficent" came from first time director Robert Stromberg.

It helped that the marketing for the film mirrored previous successes "Oz the Great and Powerful" and "Alice in Wonderland." Each went on to make $493.3 million and $1 billion respectively.

"Maleficent" may have only received decent reviews, but it felt a lot like Disney's current "Once Upon A Time" series on ABC. The show often tells the famous fairytale stories from a villain's point of view to humanize them.

Meanwhile, MacFarlane's "A Million Ways to Die in the West," made $17 million upon opening.

It was thought his comedy may perform a bit better granted "Ted" opened to $54.4 million in 2012. However, reviews did not take kindly to the Western comedy. 

SEE ALSO: Angelina Jolie is the best part of "Maleficent"

AND: How Jolie transformed into Maleficent for the movie

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Leaked 'Star Wars: Episode VII' Photos Show Off A Giant Monster


One of the biggest fears that "Star Wars" fans have for "Star Wars: Episode VII" is that it will follow in the footsteps of the CGI-heavy prequels.

However, new leaked set photos by TMZ have shown that the new film helmed by J.J. Abrams may be returning to the original trilogy's practical effects roots.

More than 40 photos put out by TMZ show different sets at the Abu Dhabi filming location for the film.

Most fans have concluded that the set stands in for Tatooine, Luke Skywalker's home planet.

Here are a few of the images below. You can check out all of the images on TMZ HERE.

According to TMZ, this monstrous puppet takes five men to operate showing that the production may be going more practical with effects rather than relying on CGI. For fans, this is the most telling leaked image. 

Monster puppet, Star Wars, set photo

Previously, J.J. Abrams' was seen on set with another giant puppet creature when he announced a chance for fans to be in the new film.JJ Abrams puppet, Star Wars Episode VII_edited 1

Below is what seems to be an engine like set piece. It looks vaguely familiar to an engine that powered the pod races from 1999's "Star Wars: Episode 1 -The Phantom Menace."

Star Wars, engine, set photo

Finally, this leaked photo shows a hooded cast member (a Jedi, perhaps?) standing in front of a giant building and what looks to be rusted out landspeeder, one similar to what Luke drove in "Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope."

Speeder, star wars, set photo

To see more of TMZ's leaked set photos from "Star Wars: Episode VII" click HERE.

More "Star Wars": Here's your chance to be in the movie

SEE ALSO: 'Star Wars: Episode VII' Starts Filming Today — Here's The First Photo From The Set

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Despite Rumors, Here's Why Adam McKay Is Not Directing 'Ant-Man'


Adam McKay, director

So how about this Ant-Man fiasco? Edgar Wright was doing it, then he wasn't. Then we all guessed who was doing it. We were wrong. The Wrap said that Rawson Thurber was the top candidate. Then it was Adam McKay announced as the new Ant-Man director. And we all rejoiced, because we love Adam McKay! 

... But then he wasn't. Our celebration was extremely short-lived, and suddenly everyone was asking about what happened. Now the situation has become much clearer, as McKay has revealed through Twitter why he won't be making Ant-Man: 

Adam McKay's other projects are considerable. The Anchorman director is likely hard at work putting together a script for The Big Short for producer Brad Pitt. Based on the Michael Lewis-authored nonfiction book, it tells the story of the crash of the housing crisis, and it would be a darkly comic shift for McKay to make in his career. Having Brad Pitt in his corner might be more beneficial that Marvel, given what Edgar Wright had to deal with. 

Perhaps he's also still trying to get Uptown Saturday Night going? That project was previously announced to star Denzel Washington and Will Smith - provided the Nick Stoller script was up to snuff. McKay is also attached to helm an adaptation of the popular Garth Ennis comic The Boys and the Will Ferrell-Adam Sandler comedy Three Mississippi. McKay's got no shortage of options, and it's sounding a lot like Marvel knew that going in, and that McKay was ultimately not that close to accepting the offer in the first place. 

So, does this mean The Wrap's previously released story about Rawson Thurber being the frontrunner is now true? The Wrap piece depressingly describes him as "more willing to accommodate producer's notes and serve a studio's vision." It's probably not as insidious as it sounds given Marvel's well-established track record, but it's still a bit disappointing that we went from the director of Shaun Of The Dead to - potentially - a guy who's known for "serving a studio's vision." Thurber's We're The Millers grossed $267 million worldwide, but no one came away thinking the guy had the chops for big budget filmmaking. 

Zombieland's Ruben Fleischer was the other suggested competitor, but as noted earlier, he may opt to stay home with his newborn child instead of launching into such a massive gig. This could mean that Marvel is considering some different voices we haven't heard about yet to handle this potential tentpole release. This thing has the whiff of desperation at this point, and you've got to think that maybe Marvel might think it isn't worth all the trouble, since Ant-Man is a lot less bankable than Black PantherDoctor StrangeCaptain Marvel or any of their other as-yet-unmade properties. 

SEE ALSO: A Few Of Marvel's Future Projects May Be In Trouble

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James Cameron Explains How He Wrote Three 'Avatar' Sequels Simultaneously


james cameron avatar

Ever since Avatar broke box office records during its theatrical release, fans have been looking forward to a follow-up for this adventure set in the fictional world of Pandora. Instead of one sequel, we're getting three, with Avatar 2 set for release in December 2016, followed by Avatar 3 and Avatar 4 in 2017 and 2018, all of which will be shot simultaneously.

Director James Cameron made an appearance at the Hero Complex Film Festival over the weekend, where he explained the "parallel process" of writing all three scripts at the same time, with co-writers Josh Friedman(War of the Worlds), the writing team of Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) and Shane Salerno (Savages) for these highly-anticipated follow-ups. Take a look at what he had to say about this unique writing process, which he compared to a television show's writers room.

"We tried an experiment. We set ourselves a challenge of writing three films at the same time. And I could certainly write any one of them but to write three in some reasonable amount of time - we wanted to shoot them together so we couldn't start one until all three scripts were done and approved. So I knew I was going to have to "parallel process" which meant I would have to work with other writers. And the best experience I had working with other writers was in television when I did Dark Angel. The television room is a highly collaborative, fun experience.

So we put together three teams, one for each script. The teams consist of me and another writer on each one of the three [films]. So I'm across all the films and then each one of them would have their own individual script they were responsible for. But what we did that was unique was we sat in the writing room for five months, eight hours a day, and we worked out every beat of the story across all three films so it all connects as one, sort of, three film saga. And I didn't tell them which one was going to be there's individually to write until the last day. So everyone was equally invested, story wise, in all three films.

So, for example, the guy that got movie three, which is middle one of this new trilogy, he now knows exactly what preceded and what follows out of what he's writing at any given moment. We all consider that to be a really exciting, creative and groundbreaking experiment in screenwriting. I don't know if that necessarily yields great scripts but it certainly worked for us as a process to get our minds around this kind of epic with all these new creatures, environments and characters and all that.

Cause the first thing I did was sat for a year and wrote 1500 pages of notes of the world and the cultures and the different clans and different animals and different biomes and so on. And had a lot of loose thematic stuff that ran through that but I didn't (have) a concrete story. I wanted to approach it more like, 'Guys we're going to adapt a novel or series of novels.' Because I felt that kind of detail, even if movies can't ever be that detailed - it can be visually detailed, it can't be that detailed in terms of character and culture. But you always get this tip of the iceberg kind of thing. You sense it's there off camera or in the past of the moment that you're seeing. So I felt that was the way to do it."

Production is scheduled to take place in New Zealand, with shooting set to begin in October.

Avatar was released December 18th, 2009 and stars Sam WorthingtonZoe Saldana,Sigourney WeaverStephen LangJoel MooreGiovanni RibisiMichelle Rodriguez,Laz Alonso. The film is directed by James Cameron.

Avatar 2 comes to theaters November 2016 and stars Stephen LangZoe Saldana,Sam Worthington. The film is directed by James Cameron.

Avatar 3 comes to theaters November 2017 and stars Stephen LangZoe Saldana,Sam Worthington. The film is directed by James Cameron.

Avatar 4 comes to theaters November 2018 and stars Zoe SaldanaSam WorthingtonStephen Lang. The film is directed by James Cameron.

SEE ALSO: James Cameron And Cirque du Soleil Team Up For Live 'Avatar' Tour

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Oscar Winner Lupita Nyong'o Cast In 'Star Wars: Episode VII'


lupita nyongo gwnedoline christie

If you were worried about a lack of actresses in "Star Wars: Episode VII," two female leads were just cast in the film.

Disney announced Oscar winner Lupita Nyong'o ("12 Years a Slave") and Gwendoline Christie ("Game of Thrones") will both star in the J.J. Abrams' directed sequel. 

You'll recognize Christie for her role on HBO's "Game of Thrones" as Brienne of Tarth.brienne of tarth

Now that the announcement is out, Nyong'o responded to the news on Instagram.

lupita nyongo star wars instagram

The two join a huge cast filled with returning actors Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford along with newcomer John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Adam Driver.

"Star Wars: Episode VII" is set for a Dec. 18, 2015 release.

SEE ALSO: Leaked "Star Wars: Episode VII" photos show off a giant monster

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Disney's 'Maleficent' Had One Really 'Dark And Unsettling' Scene


Maleficent horns

For the most part, Maleficent is totally family friendly. It's occasionally scary, but it's Disney™ Scary with gloomy forests, adventurous danger, and Angelina Jolie as an evil sorceress whom kids will find frightening in the funnest possible way.

But there is one scene that's dark in a way that will resonate differently for adult moviegoers than it will for children. [Minor spoilers follow.]

The way Maleficent loses her magnificent wings is unsettling. Stefan, the man who Maleficent thinks loves her, drugs her. While Maleficent is unconscious, incapacitated, Stefan tries to work himself up to the task of killing her. Instead he cuts off her wings (offscreen thankfully). The next morning Maleficent wakes up in pain, and soon realizes her wings have been taken, leaving nothing but bloody stumps on her back in their place. If you find yourself comparing the scene to a rape, well that might be intentional. Here's what Jolie said on the subject.

"What happened to [Maleficent] was more like a rape," she told HitFix during a roundtable interview recently. "It was something she had no choice in. It was done maliciously, with ill in tent. I think people will see it and see, for children, it's abuse, it's being bullied, it's being hurt. For anybody, everybody at this table, it hurt us. It changed us. I think children will identify with that in different ways. It will upset them, but then they'll also get angry with her hopefully and want her to grow past it, then go on that journey and understand how you can evolve past that."

While we're in no position to judge whether Jolie should be making that comparison, we have to assume it's an analogy she's thought about before speaking it out loud. Jolie is an outspoken advocate for victims of sexual abuse, even working with the U.N. to help fight the widespread use of rape as a weapon in the arsenal of rival warlords in the Congo.

Jolie's words cast the character in a different light. Even without her added context we see Maleficent as traumatized, but does this mean Jolie played the not-so-evil sorceress as a rape survivor? Those are some very dark undertones to be hidden beneath the surface of a film filled with silly CG fairy hi-jinks, but there they are, appropriate or not.

SEE ALSO: Angelina Jolie Is The Best Part Of ‘Maleficent’

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250,000 Movies Fans Voted 'The Empire Strikes Back' The Greatest Movie Of All Time


Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back poster

Empire Magazine has polled over 250,000 obsessive movie fans to come up with the 301 greatest movies ever made, a list that is led by the 1980 classic Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back.

This same poll was conducted back in 2008, which, at the time, found The Godfather taking top honors. It has now slipped into second place.

Here is a list of the top 20 movies to make the list in 2015.

To see the full list of 301 movies HERE.

Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back was released May 21st, 1980 and stars Mark HamillHarrison FordCarrie FisherBilly Dee WilliamsAnthony Daniels,David ProwsePeter MayhewKenny Baker. The film is directed by Irvin Kershner.

SEE ALSO: Leaked 'Star Wars: Episode VII' Photos Show Off A Giant Monster

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It Looks Like The Millennium Falcon Will Be In 'Star Wars: Episode VII'


star wars han solo chewbacca

It looks like the Millennium Falcon is going to be in "Star Wars: Episode VII."

After releasing more than 40 new photos yesterday, TMZ released a new group of photos showing off, what appears to be, the iconic ship used by Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Chewbacca in the original series.

More than 20 photos show off the ship, what appears to be an X-wing starfighter, one of the ships used to destroy Darth Vader's Death Star, and the giant creature seen yesterday.

According to TMZ, the photos were taken in the UK where the film's props and set pieces are being built.

The Millennium Falcon currently looks like it's under construction. 

Whether it will be operational and in use in the new film or rather just a throwback to Solo's days of flying is yet to be seen.

We've included a few of the images below. Check out the rest over at TMZ, HERE.

Here's the ship that looks like the Millennium Falcon:millennium falcon star wars episode 7

Here's a model of the Millennium Falcon.star wars millennium falcon

There's a shot of an X-wing starfighter.x wing star wars episode 7

Here's a group of them from the original "Star Wars":star wars x wing

And, finally, here's a better shot of the creature shown off yesterday.monster star wars episode 7

See all of the photos HERE.

SEE ALSO: Leaked "Star Wars" photos show off a giant monster

AND: Two more actresses join the cast of the "Star Wars" sequel

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The Success Of 'Maleficent' Could Open Up A Villains Franchise For Disney


angelina jolie maleficent

It won the box office over the weekend, but there’s no certainty that Maleficent will wind up with a sequel. Unlike Disney’s previous live-action retellings of its own animated classics — 101 Dalmatians and Alice in Wonderland — this movie may not earn enough in the long run to warrant bringing Angelina Jolie back as the redeemed Sleeping Beauty villainess.

The studio will instead focus on its other live-action remakes already in the pipeline, namely 2015′s Cinderella and The Jungle Book and the to-be-scheduled takes on Beauty and the Beast and, again, 101 Dalmatians. That last title will, like Maleficent, be focused on the baddie and has a tentative title of Cruella de Vil. Hopefully Glenn Close will reprise the lead role (making it another sequel to the 1996 hit), as she is currently credited as an executive producer on the project.

Given today’s trend of super franchises, though, it wouldn’t be surprising if Disney announced that all these movies were leading towards a mash-up of some sort. And because the public has a thing for antagonists, which Hollywood is already looking to exploit big time with a Sinister Six movie spun-off from the Amazing Spider-Man series, it also wouldn’t be surprising if that mash-up was going to be centered on Disney’s Villains merchandising franchise. It’d be a more fruitful effort than doing something with Princesses or Fairies, even though both of those are much more lucrative licensing-wise. Brands are not proven movie-worthy simply because of clothing and toy sales, especially with Disney products since the studio would prefer to target a wider audience than just the little girls who wear Tiana or Tinkerbell pajamas.

Think of the possibility: a movie teaming up Jolie, Close, Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen, Cate Blanchett as Lady Tremaine and a computer-generated Shere Khan voiced by Idris Elba. Maybe throw in some more male villains, because unfortunately there is a need for that, for demographics reasons. At least a Frollo, Jafar, Gaston or Captain Hook. There also must be Hades, who seems to be a good means of uniting his fellow evildoers. Yet it’d be hard to round out this movie without an Ursula or Evil Queen, too. Disney had previously planned to do a live-action version of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which could’ve included the latter, but they canceled the idea when Mirror Mirror and Snow White and the Huntsman pushed forth quicker.

Now we just need some kind of story that would bring all these characters together.

Disney doesn’t have any kind of backstory to the Villains merchandising, though there have been some cartoon specials and theme park attractions forcing a union. Those stories are sort of based on the idea that the characters are just “characters,” where their only shared context is that they’re part of properties owned by the same company. As if they’re conscious of the fact that they’re being lifted out of other pieces of media or the parks. That’s the only way they’d have a foundation where their common enemy is Disney heroes in general, or principally Mickey Mouse.

maleficent posterSo far, Disney has two ways to go with mashing up their characters, either they do something like the novel “The Kingdom Keepers” and the planned live-action movie Magic Kingdom, where the characters at the theme parks come to life, Night at the Museum-style, or they integrate them in a little world, a la TV’s Once Upon a Time, though even that deals with characters pulled out of their own stories.

Could there instead be the creation of an amalgamated fantasy universe that inhabits all the characters of these stories, sort of a generic Medieval world where these wonderlands and kingdoms are in the same world yet exist great distances apart? Many of Disney’s animated features involve similar settings, but how would Cruella fit in? She’s a 20th century woman. Shere Khan, meanwhile, is very much 19th century British empire. Other characters have specific periods, too.

However, there is a way to let the imagination accept a great land made up of more Middle-Age sections as well as modern urban areas, and everything in between. That’s basically just looking at the Disney theme parks as representations of an actual world in some other universe. Look at a Disneyland map as not a directory of rides and attractions but as a loose replica of a continent consisting of nations like Fantasyland, Frontierland, etc.

Next year, the Disney Channel will air a new TV movie from High School Musical‘s Kenny Ortega that seems to be making such a shared universe. Titled Descendants, it will feature Belle and Beast as queen and king of a kingdom where other heroes and heroines also reside happily ever after. All the villains, meanwhile, are collectively imprisoned in another realm. But their kids (however these were conceived) are allowed to commute from the dark place to the kingdom in order to attend school with the good characters’ offspring. The plot does follow a team-up of the adult villains for an evil mission, too. That might either be a sufficient platform for the premise or at least an effort that beats any movie pitch to the punch. Then again, the fact that there have been numerous Superman TV series hasn’t stopped there from being Superman movies, too.

Perhaps the studio can take some inspiration from the Disney Villains fan fiction, of which there is plenty. One in particular that seems to be popular is called “The Hellbound Hearts,” which involves the simple concept of bringing a bunch of villains together for a common evil — in this case, world domination, as suggested by Hades — only for them to end up divided and conquered as a result of their disagreements and egos. The value in the story, published to the web in 2010, is not so much in the plot, since that is clearly rather cliched and predictable, but in the fun of seeing all these villainous personalities bounce off one another. Author “Da Games Elite” has mostly been praised for how he or she captures the characters’ voices and behavior in order to see how they clash. The story also begins with a perfect neutral setting: the underworld.

It’s probably best to wait and see how Sinister Six turns out, because that is going to be the first real team-up movie focused on the villains. There’s a good chance that Descendants will be the more successful, but it just seems to be the case that – Maleficent‘s minor triumph at the box office notwithstanding – we like our bad guys and antiheroes on the small screen more than the big (unless it’s a fully conventional slasher horror movie perhaps). There just aren’t a lot of ways you can go when concentrated on villains that remain villainous — not retconned as good yet misunderstood as evil a la Maleficent.

My idea to keep a Disney Villains movie a worthwhile effort throughout: no major “good guy.” No Mickey or Prince Charming or even a team-up of heroes. Let the villains truly ruin their own plan and make their flaws as a team somewhat humorous. Make the division even funnier. I envision a movie like It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World but with Disney villains, where little team-ups break off and they’re all out to try to take over the world separately. Make it happen, Mouse House.

SEE ALSO: Disney's 'Maleficent' Had One Really 'Dark And Unsettling' Scene

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'X-Men: Days Of Future Past' Is Now The Highest Grossing X-Men Movie


Magneto, X Men, Baseball

When factoring in inflation, X-Men: Days of Future Past isn't really performing overly spectacular at the domestic box office, ranking fifth out of the seven films that have been released in the franchise. But when factoring in how well the movie is doing overseas, the reality is that Bryan Singer's return to the comic book movie series is actually the most profitable X-Men movie yet. 

The latest numbers are in over at Box Office Mojo, and when including the $32 million it made here in the States over the last three days and more totals from around the world, X-Men: Days of Future Past has made more than $500 million. Here in the US, the movie has made $162 million - accounting for about 32% of its total - but it's overseas where the film is really crushing, pulling in $338 million. Mexico, South Korea and the United Kingdom are all hot spots where the movie has made double-digit millions, but it's in China where the blockbuster is doing amazing abroad, making $39 million as of May 25th. 

So how exactly is X-Men: Days of Future Past doing against the previous X-Men and Wolverine films? Let's take a look at some charts! Discounting inflation, the latest sequel has made the fourth most in the series here in the USA - which you'll notice makes it the highest grossing post-2010: 

X-Men box office

Worldwide grosses are another story completely. X-Men: Days of Future Past is now far and away the biggest box office success, already making $40.8 million more than X-Men: The Last Stand - a.k.a. the silver medalist: 

X-Men days of future past box office

Not too shabby for a blockbuster with a $200 million budget! 

X-Men: Days of Future Past is based on the classic comic book arc of the same name and begins in an apocalyptic future where mutants have become nearly extinct due to the excessively dangerous Homo superior-hunting robots known as Sentinels. In order to prevent this time from ever coming to pass, the X-Men agree to send Wolverine's consciousness back in time to 1973 where he can hopefully stop an assassination that changes the world forever.

Bringing together casts from both the original trilogy and X-Men: First Class, the film stars Hugh Jackman, Sir Patrick Stewart, Sir Ian McKellen, Halle Berry, Anna Paquin, Shawn Ashmore, Ellen Page, Daniel Cudmore, Adan Canto, Omar Sy, Booboo Stewart, Fan Bing Bing, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Lucas Till, Peter Dinklage, Evan Peters, Josh Helman, and Evan Jonigkeit. 

SEE ALSO: The 3D Version Of 'X-Men' Is A Dizzying Waste Of Money

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Why 'X-Men: Days Of Future Past' Changed A Pivotal Storyline From The Comics


Wolverine, time travelWarning: Minor spoilers ahead!

"X-Men: Days of Future Past" is killing it at the box office.

The movie is now the highest-grossing "X-Men" movie to date

While the film's performing well at theaters, it's also receiving one big complaint from fans.

Based on the popular 1981 comic of the same name, the sequel sends Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) back in time to save the X-Men, and all of humanity, from a group of robot sentinels.

However, in the original comic's storyline it was Kitty Pryde (played by Ellen Page) who was sent back to change the future instead of Wolverine.

Pryde's consciousness is sent back thanks to a telekinetic mutant named Rachel Summers. It helped that Pryde's power is the ability to pass through objects, and in this scenario space and time. 

xmen Days of future past kitty power

"Days of Future Past" had a huge impact on the comic world — it's been considered one of the most influential storylines ever written— but its biggest impact may have been on the character of Kitty Pryde herself.

The story was one of the character's first big adventures, and helped make Pryde a fan favorite.

In the movie, Pryde is shown to have the telekinetic powers of Summers and sends Wolverine back in time. Many saw this as a nod to Pryde time travelling in the comic.

This is why so many X-Men fans were disappointed with the film's switch (even Jon Stewart questioned the choice).

Why send Wolverine back in time instead of Pryde?

The film's screenwriter Simon Kinberg claims the reasoning was about age. 

“The biggest place we diverged from the original books in who gets sent back in time," Kinberg told Empire. "We wanted someone’s consciousness sent back in time instead of their bodies, and if you send Ellen Page’s consciousness back... she’s negative-20 years old, so immediately we realized it wasn’t going to the pre-ghost of Ellen Page." 

Kinberg says production went through other X-men to send back, but ultimately landed on the series' most popular character, Wolverine (Hugh Jackman).Wolverine, Hugh Jackman, muscles, Days of future past“Somewhere in that process we realized we had a character that doesn’t age and happens to be the most popular character in the movie franchise," Kinberg added. "It then became Wolverine who was sent back in time.”

However, the big switcheroo may be more easily explained by each actor's popularity.

As Kinberg noted, Wolverine is the most recognizable X-Men to audiences. Jackman not only appeared in every single "X-Men" film to date since 2000, including two spin-offmovies of his own, but he has also become a huge star in his own right in the past 14 years.

Jackman has gone on to conquer Broadway, host the Academy Awards, and also starred in Oscar-nominated "Les Miserables" along with last year's hit mystery thriller "Prisoners."

Meanwhile, Page appeared in two "X-Men" movies in a supporting role. The actress is best known for roles in "Juno" and "Inception," the latter of which was her last big hit in 2010.

Her movies have made a collective $1.7 billion worldwide (thanks to a big bump from "Inception"). Jackman's movies? $5.1 billion.

The Mary Sue suggested Pryde's lack of popularity was a fault of the writers.

"Falling back on Wolverine yet again is a mixture of kowtowing to audience familiarity and plain old writing laziness touched with sexism."

It's hard to disagree with that argument, but regardless of the reasoning many fans still found the change disappointing. 

MORE X-MEN: Why 'X-Men: Days Of Future Past' Changed The Iconic Look Of The Mutant-Hunting Sentinels

AND: Here's what happens in Anna Paquin's deleted "X-Men: Days of Future Past" scene

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Director Jon Favreau Explains How Difficult It Was To Cast Robert Downey Jr. As Iron Man


tony stark iron man 3

While Robert Downey Jr. is now easily one of the most beloved movie stars in the world, prior to taking on the role of Tony Stark in 2008's Iron Man the actor had a very different public image. Despite years and years of putting on fantastic performances in great films, the star was much better known for his drug and alcohol habits and as a result was considered by many in the studio system to be an extreme risk. Despite Downey Jr. cleaning up his act, this behavior continued all the way up until Marvel Studios began carving out plans for their Marvel Cinematic Universe - which is why Jon Favreau really had to go to bat for him in the casting process for Iron Man

Favreau opened up about casting Robert Downey Jr. during a recent interview with the Texas radio station 100.3 Jack FM, and revealed to the hosts that while Iron Man he brought up the idea of casting Downey Jr. in the lead role and was rejected multiple times. Despite all the negativity and wariness surrounding the suggestion, however, the director didn't take "no" for an answer and instead made it his responsibility to show the people at Marvel Studios that he knew exactly which actor he wanted to play the starring role. Said Favreau, "It was my job as a director to show that it was the best choice creatively…and now the Marvel Universe is the biggest franchise in film history." 

So why exactly did Favreau insist on having Downey Jr. as his Iron Man? The answer to that question has two parts. One half of it was what Favreau says is his "really special ability" to see talent in other people. The other half, though, was the fact that the director simply saw far too many similarities between the journey the character takes in the film and what his actor friend had gone through during his time on the big screen. 

“Everybody knew he was talented… Certainly by studying the Iron Man role and developing that script I realized that the character seemed to line-up with Robert in all the good and bad ways. And the story of Iron Man was really the story of Robert’s career.”

Of course, Jon Favreau was eventually able to convince the folks at Marvel Studios that Robert Downey Jr. was the perfect Tony Stark, and it turned out to be one of the greatest decisions in blockbuster history. Not including The Avengers, the Iron Man franchise has made over $2.4 billion at the global box office, and there's no denying that a great deal of that success comes from the magnetism and charisma of the franchise's main star. Explained Favreau in summation, "That was a big gamble on whether or not he was really serious about it… and now history has definitely proven that he was dead serious about it and now he is the biggest star in the world." 

SEE ALSO: Before 'Ant-Man' Drama: 4 Messy Marvel Studios Conflicts

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Warner Bros. Abruptly Just Delayed One Of Its Biggest Movies Of The Summer Until Next Year


mila kunis jupiter ascendingThis is really unexpected.

Warner Bros. just delayed one of its biggest movies of the summer, “Jupiter Ascending,” until next year.

The big-budget sci-fi movie, starring Channing Tatum and Mila Kunis, was set to be the next movie from the Wachowski siblings — the duo behind “The Matrix” series.

How abrupt is this change in schedule? 

Well, the movie was due for release in about seven weeks on July 18. 

Instead, the movie will now be released February 6. That's the same weekend WB released "The Lego Movie" this year and it turned into a break-out hit dominating the box office for four weeks.

batman spaceman lego movieWhile it’s smart to put a big movie out when there's little competition, the unexpected move raises some serious questions about the Wachowski picture.

According to Variety, the move was made to finish "more than 2,000 special effects shots in the film."

“With the July release date, they were just not going to make it on time,” said domestic distribution chief Dan Fellman. 

While that may be the case, there may be other concerns about the $150 million movie.

There hasn't been a lot of buzz about the original sci-fi flick at all. 

Tatum's last summer movie "White House Down" ended up underperforming for Sony (granted it was overshadowed by the very similar"Olympus Has Fallen").

And the last time the Wachowskis tried their hands at another sci-fi flick for Warner Bros. we ended up with Tom Hanks and Halle Berry's "Cloud Atlas." The $100 million film made $130 million at theaters.

You would think Warner Bros. would want to keep a movie in the July 18 weekend slot. It's one of the best performing weekends for the studio producing two "Dark Knight" and "Harry Potter" hits.

This is the second time Warner Bros. has recently removed a film from this weekend. The "Batman V Superman" movie was originally slated for July 17, 2015 before being pushed back to April 2016.

The other factor to consider is that Warner Bros. has no shortage of movies coming out. That’s both a good and a bad thing because none of them are surefire hits for the studio.

There’s “Tammy” starring Melissa McCarthy. While the actress has been a box-office hit, the trailers haven’t offered much past a fast food robbery for viewers to latch onto. Then there’s  Clint Eastwood’s “Jersey Boys” adaptation out later this month and a tornado thriller “Into the Storm” on the way this August. 

Tom Cruise’s “Edge of Tomorrow,” out Friday, is getting favorable reviews— as it should, it’s pretty good — but the $175+ million film already isn’t performing well overseas. That’s where Cruise’s movies usually make a lot of their money. So far it’s made $23.8 million.

Either WB didn't see this movie performing as well and the studio is doing some pre-damage control to offset other potential misfires or they wanted to save it for early next year to have the first big hit of 2015. 

Since the track record for February releases isn't stellar, the latter doesn't seem the case.

If "Jupiter Ascending" underperforms in the February slot the good news for WB is that there should still be money rolling in from the final installment of "The Hobbit" out this holiday.

SEE ALSO: The 12 most sought-after stunt doubles in Hollywood

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Marvel's 'Doctor Strange' Hires 'Sinister' Director


Doctor Strange

While Marvel is still busy trying to find someone to make Ant-Man, they’re not wasting any time moving full-force forward on their next venture, Dr. Strange. Although talks are still early, Variety has confirmed that Scott Derrickson, director of many a horror great (plus the remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still), will be the man to bring the next Marvel character to life.

Stephen Strange is one of the odder Marvel entities, a former neurosurgeon (yeah, that title isn’t just for show) who became Sorcerer Supreme, protector of Earth against all things mystical and magical and fantastically evil. Have you seen his cape? You don’t get to wear something that grandiose just because you feel like it. It’s earned.

The character first appeared in Marvel’s “Strange Tales” alongside the Human Torch in 1963, then he began his grand tour of becoming every college student’s favorite comic book character — nobody with a substantial amount of time on their hands and access to a few or maybe a lot of potent drugs in the 1960s was going to pass up reading about the adventures of a whimsical, cape-wearing sorcerer who leaps through surreal landscapes and surrounds himself in psychedelic visuals rife with Egyptian and Sumerian mythology.

Scott DerricksonLike any Marvel property, the seeds for this one have long been planted. His place in line was asserted years ago as part of their mysterious, all-knowing, multi-phased plan for taking over the world mapping out their universe on film and television. It was just a matter of time before he officially showed up on the roster.

Most recently, a single utterance of the name Stephen Strange was rattled off in a laundry list of other characters in danger during Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Did you hear a few gasps during this round of dialogue during the film? It was the shrill cry of your theatre’s geeks figuring out that Dr. Strange would probably be getting his own movie soon, if not just making an appearance in whatever was next.

Derrickson is a talented filmmaker known for such gruesome flicks as Sinister and The Exorcism of Emily Rose (and Deliver Us from Evil, out next month) — beautifully shot films with hide-behind-your-hands worthy imagery. His films aren’t shy about gore and occult terror. With that darkness and dreariness, could Dr. Strange‘s psychedelia be curbed in favor of some kind of twisted mind trip?

Of course, with a director all but pegged down, focus will now shift to who will play the good doctor himself. While there are absolutely no frontrunners at this time, one can’t help but remember Nathan Fillion’s little slip that we should look out for him in a post-credits scene after Guardians of the Galaxy. Is this our man?

SEE ALSO: Marvel Begins Director Search For 'Doctor Strange' Movie

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The 'Fantastic Four' Director Is Making A 'Star Wars' Spinoff Movie


josh trank star wars spinoff directorAdd another name to the growing "Star Wars" list.

Disney and Lucasfilm announced Josh Trank ("Chronicle") will direct a "Star Wars" spinoff film.

Trank is currently working on a new "Fantastic Four" movie for 20th Century Fox. Most recently, he brought teen superhero film "Chronicle" to theaters. 

The news comes after two days of leaked images from the set by TMZ showing off creatures and the Millennium Falcon.

It was previously announced "Godzilla" director Gareth Edwards will take the lead on another standalone "Star Wars" movie due out Dec. 2016.

At least three "Star Wars"spinoff movies are expected.

"Star Wars: Episode VII" will be released December 18, 2015.

SEE ALSO: "Godzilla" director to make a "Star Wars" spinoff

SEE ALSO: How you can be in "Star Wars: Episode VII"

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J.J. Abrams Responds To 'Star Wars: Episode VII' Leaks With His Own 'Leaked' Photo


Now that production is finally under way on Star Wars: Episode VII, a number of photos have been leaked from the set, including yesterday's images that indicated the Millennium Falcon will have a presence in this highly-anticipated sequel. Today, director J.J. Abrams responded with a carefully-placed letter of his own, where he "denies" the "ridiculous claims" that the Millennium Falcon will be in the movie. Take a look at the image, then read on for more information.

Of course, most fans will realize that the hand-written letter from J.J. Abrams is placed on the Dejarik board, the hologram chess game that Chewbacca played with R2-D2 in the original Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope while aboard the Millennium Falcon. The scene included the famous line, "Let the Wookie win." Given the content of this seemingly tongue-in-cheek letter, and its placement, it's safe to say that fans can expect the Millennium Falcon to be featured in Star Wars: Episode VII, one way or another. But who's the Wookie in this situation? J.J. Abrams or the photo hungry Paparazzi?

Star Wars: Episode VII comes to theaters December 18th, 2015 and stars Gwendoline ChristieHarrison FordCarrie FisherDomhnall GleesonMark Hamill,Andy SerkisLupita Nyong'oOscar Isaac. The film is directed by J.J. Abrams.

SEE ALSO: It Looks Like The Millennium Falcon Will Be In 'Star Wars: Episode VII'

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The Actors From 'Shawshank Redemption' Still Make A 'Steady' Income Off TV Residual Checks


Bob Gunton Shawshank RedemptionWhen "The Shawshank Redemption" hit theaters in 1994, it opened to little box office success but much critical acclaim.

Since then, the prison drama has gone one to become the most re-run movie on television (tying with "Scarface"), accounting for 151 hours of basic cable air time last year alone, according to research firm IHS.

After initially bringing in just $18 million at the box office, "Shawshank" gained popularity when it was nominated for seven Academy Awards in 1995, but didn't win one.

After the Oscars, Warner Bros. re-released the film and it grossed an additional $10 million, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The re-release primed the movie for a video release  which at the time, was still a big business. People discovered it on video, making it the most rented movie of 1995. 

After all of the video rentals and TV air time, the film's actors are still earning a healthy residual income from the movie they shot two decades ago.

Bob Gunton, who played the mean prison warden, told WSJ's Russell Adams that the film is still generating a very substantial income for him. 

Gunton told Adams that he still gets residual payments — "not huge, but steady, close to six figures by the film's 10th anniversary in 2004." Since then, he has continued to get "a very substantial income," which is highly unusual for so many years later.

"I suspect my daughter, years from now, will still be getting checks," he said.

The film's bigger name stars, such as Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman, likely make far more than Gunton, who says he still gets recognized almost daily from the role.

"It's an incredible moneymaking asset that continues to resonate with viewers," Jeff Baker, executive vice president and general manager of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment theatrical catalog, told WSJ.

The turning point for the film's run on TV first came in 1997, when Ted Turner's TNT channel got the cable-broadcast rights to the film and made "Shawshank" an anchor of its "New Classics" campaign.

After grossing $28 million domestically and another $30 million overseas around the time of its 1994 release, "Shawshank" went on to make around $80 million in sales on the video rental market, Warner Bros' Mr. Baker told WSJ.

Warner Bros. wouldn't say how much money it has earned from the movie, but did reveal it's one of the top movies that drive much of their library's value, current and former Warner Bros. executives revealed to WSJ.

But as Russell interestingly points out in his WSJ article, the slow-to-grow "Shawshank" strategy may be worth it after all.

The movie's profits to date may sound small in a world where some films gross $100 million in a single weekend. But such figures only begin to show a movie like "Shawshank"'s long-term importance for a studio's financial picture. That's why there are six big studios: Smaller ventures that lack a reservoir of films have trouble surviving flops.

SEE ALSO: 'The Shawshank Redemption' Accounted For A Huge Amount Of Cable Air Time In 2013

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New Trailer For Best-Selling Novel 'The Giver' Shows An Eerie World Without Color


the giver brenton thwaites

A new trailer for best-selling novel "The Giver" is out and it looks more true to the book than the first trailer we watched a few months ago.

The 1993 young-adult novel from Lois Lowry showcases a dystopian world devoid of color where everyone is given a specific role to play.

One day a one young boy, Jonas (Brenton Thwaites), meets The Giver (Jeff Bridges), a man in charge of the community's memories. Soon afterward he slowly starts seeing the world as it really is.

Fans of the novel may have been bummed the first trailer showed a world in color since the world is seen in black and white through the main character's eyes for a period of the book.

This second trailer for The Weinstein Company movie stays true to that showing Jonas as he starts to see the world in color.

It looks pretty cool.the giver color black and white

Thwaites and Bridges star alongside Meryl Streep, Katie Holmes, and Alexander Skarsgard.

"The Giver" is due out in theaters August 15.

Check out the trailer below:

SEE ALSO: The only 10 shows you should watch this summer

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11 Classic Movies That Were Originally Box-Office Bombs


wizard of oz

How much money a movie makes at the box office isn't always an indicator of whether it will become a classic.

Some of Hollywood's greatest films were financial flops that took years before they were fully embraced by audiences.

From arguably the greatest film ever made, "Citizen Kane," to the cult hit "The Big Lebowski," these are the classic films that bombed at theaters.

"Donnie Darko" (2001)

"Donnie Darko" may have helped launch the career of Jake Gyllenhaal, but it was a huge flop when it came out in theaters.

The indie film, which cost an estimated $6 million to make, debuted to $110,494It didn't help that the film — which features a plane crash — opened not long after the Sept. 11 attacks. The movie wasn't released internationally for another year.

Theatrically, "Donnie Darko" went on to make $1.2 million. After its DVD release in 2002, it started playing as a midnight movie for over two years at New York's Pioneer Theater and became enough of a cult classic to release a "director's cut."

"Fight Club" (1999)

When "Fight Club" first hit theaters in 1999, it didn't just perform poorly — the film made just $37 million domestically— but also received mixed reviews.

Entertainment Weekly gave it a "D" calling it a "dumb and brutal shock show" while according to the film's commentary Rosie O'Donnell hated it so much that she went as far to ruin the film's twist ending on national television.

It wasn't until the DVD release that the film took off (it sold over 6 million copies) allowing a wider audience to catch the hidden details that made it a dark classic.

"Office Space" (1999)

1999's "Office Space" may have understood office life, but it failed to understand the box office.

After weak reviews and a poor marketing campaign, the film failed to reach an audience making only $10.8 million in theaters.

Director Mike Judge chalked it up to the movie being a tough sell.

"Office Space isn't like American Pie,"Judge told Entertainment Weekly. "It doesn't have the kind of jokes you put in a 15-second television spot of somebody getting hit on the head with a frying pan. It's sly. And let me tell you, sly is hard to sell."

The film eventually found its niche on DVD becoming a top rental, and was later ranked fifth by EW in its list of the greatest comedies of the last 25 years.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider