New Catching Fire Photo: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson Shine in Hunger Games Victor Poster

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

Only three more months until the games begin!

A new Catching Fire photo of Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen and Josh Hutcherson as Peeta Mellark has appeared on the official Hunger Games Facebook page, and the victor’s poster features the District 12 duo standing strong together while looking ready to fight.

“‘No one is a victor by chance.’ Which victor will join Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark next? Tweet your guess with #VictorsRevealed,” read the caption on the newly released pic.

Eager fans can use the hashtag to post their best guesses for the next fighter who will be unveiled on the poster (although we’ve already had some hints thanks to the cast photos), and there’s even a countdown on the site, where you can read fellow Hunger Games fans’ tweets.

VIDEO: Watch the latest Catching Fire trailer

In the poster, Katniss and Peeta appear to be standing in the arena while dressed in their Quarter Quell outfits, as the braided-haired beauty grips her bow and arrow.

The pair will have to face the dilemma of returning to the 75th Annual Hunger Games in theFrancis Lawrence-directed sequel, as seen in the new international trailer.

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, which also stars Liam HemsworthPhilip Seymour HoffmanSam ClaflinJena MaloneLenny KravitzDonald Sutherland and Elizabeth Banks, hits theaters November 22.


Ender’s Game Producer Bob Orci Talks Casting Harrison Ford and Believing In UFOs at Comic-Con 2013

from the Huffington post:


Shira Lazar



Ender’s Game producer Bob Orci chats with What’s Trending at Nerd HQ at San Diego Comic-Con 2013 about the buzz surrounding his upcoming sci-fi film, based on Orson Scott Card’s classic novel.

“Audiences have seen a lot of everything,” Orci says. “They’re pretty savvy. They’re pretty smart and this book was around for a long time, trying to get made into a movie. I think some studios were afraid that it was this young protagonist but it’s adult themes. It’s complicated. It’s challenging. It’s not the usual structure.” But he says that Comic-Con is the perfect place to market the film because Comic-Con celebrates fandom.

In terms of translating the novel for a modern audience, Orci says that the work was done for him in the book. “Interestingly enough, the book itself was very prescient in ’84,” he says. “It predicted war at a distance. It predicted blogging and elements of the Internet, devices you can touch. So we didn’t have to do a lot of updating.”

Orci reveals that while a lot of the cast emerged from just being fans of the book, choosing Harrison Ford was an exciting process. “Well, you think you’re deciding on him, but really he’s deciding on you,” Orci says. “What he said when he read the script actually was that he’s offered a lot of sci-fi. He’s read a lot of sci-fi. And that this was one of the rare ones where he felt that actually not only was it a spectacle but it also had something to say and had a lot of emotion and that’s why he did it.”

He also shares a funny moment in which he asked Ford if he would ever like to direct, and he quoted Bob Hoskins by replaying, “No. Directing is like getting pecked to death by a thousand penguins.”

Orci also shares some information about filming the movie with the young and talented lead, Asa Butterfield. “We shot it in sequence, funnily enough. So you actually do see Asa grow. He grew two inches during the filming of this movie.” He adds, “His experience in the movie sort of mirrors the character’s experience of […] eventually becoming this competent leader and simultanously in front of the camera becoming a more confident actor.”

For more exclusives from San Diego Comic-Con 2013, subscribe to What’s Trending!

Comic-Con: can Ender’s Game be saved by the incredible Orson Scott Card disappearing act?

As Lionsgate seeks to put distance between the anti-gay writer and its movie of his novel, the row underlines the need for film-makers to think more deeply about fans’ views


Per the UK Daily Guardian:



Comic-Con: Harrison Ford at the Ender's Game panel

Comic-Con: Harrison Ford at the Ender’s Game panel. Photograph: Denis Poroy/Invision/AP

They say all publicity is good publicity. If so, studio Lionsgate should be reaping the rewards from all the negative hype whirling around the repugnant views of Orson Scott Card, author of the novel upon which its upcoming science fiction movie Ender’s Game is based. Ever since gay rights group Geeks Out launched its campaign for a boycott of Gavin Hood’s film, whose stellar cast includes Harrison Ford, Britain’s brilliant Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld and Abigail Breslin, the noise surrounding the movie has been firmly about Card’s homophobic attitudes rather than the movie itself.

  1. Ender’s Game
  2. Production year: 2013
  3. Country: USA
  4. Directors: Gavin Hood
  5. Cast: Abigail Breslin, Asa Butterfield, Harrison Ford
  6. More on this film

Lionsgate’s reaction has been to pretend that Card is a figment of everybody else’s imagination, rather than the source of its own worst nightmares. As the Hollywood Reporter has pointed out, the science fiction writer’s name has been excised from pretty much all publicity surrounding the movie: he is no longer visible on Ender’s Game’s Facebook page, and barely gets a mention on the film’s trailer beyond a tiny two-second glimpse on the end title card.

Card was not present at the film’s appearance at Comic Con in San Diego last night, despite the panel for Lionsgate’s other teen-orientated sci-fi flick, Divergence, featuring source novel author Veronica Roth. Producer Robert Orci simply batted back questions about the controversy in the way Lionsgate has done since it erupted. “Rather than shy away from this, I would reiterate that we support LGBT rights, and human rights,” he said. The studio has promised to hold a fundraiser for gay causes and argued that its movie really has nothing to do with Card’s nasty views, which have been detailed by my colleague Andrew Wheeler over on Comment is Free.

Comic-Con: Harrison Ford and Asa Butterfield in Ender's GameHarrison Ford and Asa Butterfield in Ender’s GameThe problem here is that Card has been far from a hands-off figure in Ender’s Game’s gestation period. While the current screenplay, based on both Ender’s Game and parallel novel Ender’s Shadow, is credited to Hood alone, the Mormon author has written at least two scripts of his own over the past 15 years. He is listed as a producer on the film and is said to have refused Hollywood’s advances several times in the 1980s and 1990s due to creative differences. He even gets a voice cameo as a pilot in the movie.

That Lionsgate failed to pick up on Card’s increasing notoriety for all the wrong reasons over the couple of years in which it has been involved in the film ought to be a salutary lesson for Hollywood. In a universe in which fanboy cred seems to matter almost as much as box office results, making a movie based on the ideas of a guy who professes to hate a large portion of your key audience so much that he once said he wouldrather overthrow the United States government than tolerate gay marriage is a very bad call indeed.

Conversely, geek culture has always been notable for its tolerance. But Hollywood is fast learning that the fanboy brigade are not just a great slavering mass of wide-eyed chumps desperate to haemorrhage their hard-earned cash in the direction of the nearest multiplex. Sometimes, the geeks bite back, and woe betide those who are not prepared to listen.

It shows how far we have come that Card, who was arrogant enough to make that statement about gay marriage and the US government only four years ago, now mewls plaintively about “persecution” from “triumphant” proponents of equal rights in the wake of the US’s historic legal ruling last month. How irritating it must be for the author that his two-decade battle to bring his best known work to the big screen has been scuppered by the very people he finds most repugnant in this world – and how wonderfully ironic.

As a science fiction movie fan, I can’t help but feel a little disappointed that what might prove to be a rather decent example of the form is being overshadowed by the controversy surrounding Card. Should Lionsgate’s platitudes towards the LGBT community be accepted – the Oscar-winning writer of Milk, Dustin Lance Black, has proposed as much – I’d like to see the film do well. But if all that bad hype does doom the movie, and if studios take a little more care over who they choose to work with as a result, it may just have been worth it.

Box office disappointments ‘Lone Ranger,’ ‘White House Down,’ and ‘Pacific Rim’ have industry worried about future of blockbusters

Per the New York Daily News


FRIDAY, JULY 19, 2013, 6:20 PM

Crowded field at the multiplex this summer even hurt sure-thing ‘Hangover, Part III’ and threatens to turn ‘R.I.P.D.’ into another box office bust.



How the West Was Lost: Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer in ‘The Lone Ranger,’ a $200 million disappointment.

The heat has been turned up on Hollywood studios this summer.

After several high-profile tentpole movies in a row — “White House Down,” “The Lone Ranger” and “Pacific Rim” — tanked at the box office, industry watchers are nervous that the blockbuster model is nearing a tipping point.

“These are films are fall into formulas that have been successful in other iterations,” says Ira Deutchman, chair of the film program at Columbia University.

“I think that it is a sign that the formula that Hollywood thought was going to always work for them is reaching its limitations.

“Too many studios, too many filmmakers are chasing the same audience with same formula — tons of effects and explosions — and people are getting burned out.”

This summer has also been chock full of movies that critics and moviegoers have agreed are not worth the price of the popcorn.

Take “The Lone Ranger,” a $200 million adaptation of a Western character last relevant in pop culture in the ‘50s from the television series starring Clayton Moore.

“Even before ‘The Lone Ranger’ came out, it’s not exactly like the entire culture has been clamoring for a new ‘Lone Ranger’ movie,” says Robert Thompson, director of Syracuse University’s Bleier Center for Television and Popular Culture. “ I’m 54 and Lone Ranger seems stodgy to me . I don’t know that we should draw too many conclusions from these particular failures.”

But what’s particularly damning is that the three straight busts over the past three weeks were all non-sequels, including attempts to start new franchises with “original” stories with “Lone Ranger” and “Pacific Rim.”

“What high profile failures do is chip away at the confidence of studios,” says Paul Dergarabedian, box office analyst for

“Every summer people decry the fact that there are too many sequels, when Hollywood tried to go the original route, it came back to bite them.”

Part of the problem is that its been a “traffic jam,” in Dergarabedian’s words, at the multiplex this summer. In May, “The Hangover Part III,” finished a distant second behind “Fast & Furious 6” — a box office battle between two movies that were chasing more or less the same demographic.

Had the R-rated comedy opened on a less crowded weekend, it likely would have enjoyed the same No. 1 bragging rights as the two previous installments in the franchise.

But during the 18-week summer season that kicked off with “Iron Man 3,” there weren’t any open slots. This Friday, Warner Brothers’ scarer “The Conjuring” is opening against Summit’s “Red 2” and Universal’s big budget “R.I.P.D.” — and a fourth major film, the animated feature “Turbo,” debuted two days earlier. There isn’t enough ticket money to go around and the $130 million “R.I.P.D.” looks to be dead on arrival, according to tracking data from

“It’s one thing to budget for a blockbuster, it’s another thing to market for it, and its another thing to actually bust the block,” says Thompson. “It’s not science, it’s showbiz.”

Hollywood studios, however, are not likely to panic just yet. Even though “The Lone Ranger” will end up costing Disney a projected $100 to $200 in losses, the studio is still basking in the glow of “The Avengers,” which earned $1.5 billion worldwide last year. “Iron Man 3,” which opened in May, has already added $1.2 billion in global box office to the studio coffers.

“From the first weekend in May through this past Sunday, the box office is at 12.95% ahead of last year.” says Dergarabedian. “That’s the irony in all this, emotionally it feels like this summer is a bust, but on paper its not bad at all.”

Audiences elected to stay away from ‘White House Down,’ starring Channing Tatum.


Audiences elected to stay away from ‘White House Down,’ starring Channing Tatum.

‘Pacific Rim’ debuted in third place last weekend with $37.2 million, hardly a monster hit.


‘Pacific Rim’ debuted in third place last weekend with $37.2 million, hardly a monster hit.

‘The Hangover Part III’ may have been a bigger hit if it hadn't opened up against ‘Fast & Furious 6’ on a crowded Memorial Day Weekend at the multiplex.


‘The Hangover Part III’ may have been a bigger hit if it hadn’t opened up against ‘Fast & Furious 6’ on a crowded Memorial Day Weekend at the multiplex.

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