•November 3, 2015 • Leave a Comment
So here I am in Italy, checking out stage space at fabled Cinecittà Studios outside of Rome, this for a project I expect to shoot next year. They have over 20 stages here, but the most impressive – for a few reasons – is “Teatro 5.” Not only it is massive in size, but it’s also known as “Fellini’s Stage,” since the master shot “La Dolce Vita” and “8 ½” and “Casanova” and many other movies here. It’s good to commune with the ghosts of greats once in awhile.
The backlot is impressive, too, with a permanent Rome set. Unfortunately, no real sets remain from “Ben Hur,” shot on this very ground in 1958. But this wasn’t a bad proxy.
Had dinner down on Via Margutta one night while in Rome, then took a stroll afterwards. Ran unexpectedly into this on the side of a building. It seems to mark Fellini’s home residence. I took a whack at translating the script below but came up short. Maybe some of you can do better.
•June 11, 2014 • 3 Comments
The good folks at Activision invited me over to E3 yesterday to check out their latest and greatest. Saw the trailer for DESTINY, publicly available, but then on the DL they showed me some gameplay footage for the upcoming CALL OF DUTY, ADVANCED WARFARE. While DESTINY impressed, the CODAW footage rocked hard. Count me in for that one. Maybe both. Gina Ramirez was nice enough to show me around.
•January 2, 2014 • 8 Comments
Some of you have been asking for dish on this new cut of RIDDICK, available now on iTunes and dropping January 14 on DVD. Well, the Director’s Cut is probably 8-9 minutes longer than the theatrical version. The bulk of that time comes in two areas — several new scenes in the flashback sequence that shows how Riddick’s tenure on the Necromonger throne was a troubled and dangerous one (this includes a lot more of Karl Urban), and a new coda that sees Riddick returning to the Necro armada to seek out Vaako, the man he believes double-crossed him. All told, we probably created 50 new VFX shots just for this extended cut.
BTW, I hate the cover art for RIDDICK: THE COMPLETE COLLECTION. Someone should’ve run it by me first.
•September 7, 2013 • 8 Comments
Just a quick but heartfelt shout-out to all those who helped make RIDDICK the #1 movie in the US and UK this week. I’m talking about my cast who came to play…my stalwart crew heads who ventured into battle beside me…to the rank-and-file in Montreal who pulled it all together and shared their city with us. To all I say “A thousand thanks.”
The view from the summit may be fleeting but it is memorable.
•July 24, 2013 • 6 Comments
So it was a crazy day. Which made it a fairly typical day at Com-Con.
I hit SD about 10:30 in the morning. Got an hour or so to walk the auditorium floor, and was heartened to see the comic book stands…the concept artists working away at their stalls…the smaller vendors hawking their fantasy figurines. I was last at Com-Con 13 years ago, and I was glad to see that it hadn’t been completely co-opted by the studios and networks.
Then it was time to get down to business. “H” Hall business.
Vin, Katee, and I strode into the hall before 6,500 pairs of eager eyes. Last time here, I showed clips from a small movie called PITCH BLACK, and today I was showing scenes from RIDDICK, third in the same series. It played about as well as I could’ve imagined. I’ve actually seen the movie with precious few people because I chose not to test the movie, chose not to focus-group it to death. Hey, I figure I know our audience by now. They were right here in “H” hall, eating up the new RIDDICK red-band trailer.
“H” Hall done, the three of us broke up for our individual interviews. It’s a blur now, but I do recall spending time in the Entertainment Weekly suite and with Drew McWeeney of Hitflix and with the IGN folks among many, many others. I probably did a solid seven hours of interviews and poster-signing. There comes a point when you start to tire of your own answers – the same answers which seemed fresh and inspired just hours before. Charlie Sheen once told me that, on particularly long press junkets, he just started making shit up to keep himself amused.
Well, Charlie can do that. But I hew closer to reality than Charlie does. (No huge badge of honor, that.)
Anyway, great day and mission accomplished. RIDDICK comes out September 6 in the U.S. and Canada. Try to see it in a digital IMAX theater – that’ll be the best presentation.
•June 26, 2013 • 3 Comments
I’ll be there on Friday, July 19, Hall H. How ’bout you?
Poster by Charles Ratteray
•May 12, 2013 • 6 Comments
I’ve been working over at IMAX in Santa Monica the last few weeks, overseeing the conversion of RIDDICK into its giant-ass supersize-me format. Hasn’t always been an easy task: David Eggby and I shot the movie widescreen (2.40:1), yet the native aspect ratio of IMAX is much taller (1.90:1). That’s no small difference to reconcile.
My solution was to adopt different aspect ratios within the same movie – something that was never done 10 years ago when film was still king. But now that we use an entirely digital pipeline, we can vary the size of the image on the screen – on a shot-by-shot basis. So that’s what I opted to do for the IMAX version. (RIDDICK will have about 300 IMAX screens.)
And don’t confuse IMAX with 3D as some do. They’re distinct things, and a movie can be one…can be the other…can be both. So RIDDICK will be big – but not extra-dimensional. I think straight IMAX yields a superior viewing experience and is here for good. But 3D? Not sure it’s so much more immersive than a screen 70 feet high. That said…
The good folks at IMAX did run IRON MAN 3 for me in both large format and 3D. And let me tell you, it was quite a spectacle. So I’ll keep my mind open for awhile longer on the ultimate utility and fate of 3D.
RIDDICK is set for release in the US and Canada September 6. Next post, I’ll try to include international release dates since some of you who live overseas have been asking.