“Ghostbusters: Afterlife is a movie about family, that’s being made by a family.” Sony has debuted a fun behind-the-scenes featurette for Jason Reitman’s Ghostbusters: Afterlife (remember this movie??). This was supposed to open in theaters LAST summer (watch the first trailer again), but was delayed for more than a year due to the pandemic, now opening in theaters THIS November. Afterlife is a direct sequel to the first two movies (from 1984 & 1989) and brings back the classic Ecto-1 and some of the original actors. The main cast includes Carrie Coon, Finn Wolfhard, Mckenna Grace, and Paul Rudd; also featuring Bill Murray, Annie Potts, Sigourney Weaver, Dan Aykroyd, Bokeem Woodbine, and Ernie Hudson. This featurette focuses on director Jason Reitman and his father Ivan Reitman, who directed the original two Ghostbusters movie, and their relationship making this sequel. Lots of awkward “my dad watching over my shoulder” moments in this. But it’s still charming. And it sounds like a new trailer is arriving very soon.
“Stick to the very first impulse, the reason why you wanted to do this.” Netflix has debuted a featurette for the acclaimed Indian musician film The Disciple, which premiered at the Venice Film Festival last year and won Best Screenplay there. This already debuted on Netflix (in the US) in April – we posted the trailer then and the film is available to watch now. Some critics complained that Netflix didn’t do any promotion and barely notified anyone that it was released. The film was executive produced by Alfonso Cuaron, so he hopped on Zoom to chat about why he supported this talented filmmaker, who is the same director of the underrated drama Court. Self-doubt, sacrifice and struggle converge into an existential crisis for a devoted classical vocalist as the mastery he strives for remains elusive. It’s based on the true story of singer Sharad Nerulkar. The Disciple stars Aditya Modak, Arun Dravid, Sumitra Bhave, Deepika Bhide Bhagwat, and Kiran Yadnyopavit, among others. If you’re interested, you can watch it on Netflix now. Take a look.
Unleash the zombie hordes! Now available to watch worldwide on Netflix is Zack Snyder’s epic new zombie movie Army of the Dead, set in a zombie-infested Las Vegas. In celebration of the release, Netflix has also debuted a 30-minute “behind the scenes” video called Creating an Army of the Dead. It’s only available to watch directly on Netflix – an extensive look at how they made this movie, not a short little promotional featurette. “Zack Snyder and his Army of the Dead team dive into the film’s wild stunts, groundbreaking effects and the evolution of the zombie genre.” After a zombie outbreak in Las Vegas, a group of mercenaries take the ultimate gamble, venturing into the quarantine zone to pull off the greatest heist ever attempted. The movie stars Dave Bautista, Ella Purnell, Omari Hardwick, Ana De La Reguera, Theo Rossi, Matthias Schweighöfer, Nora Arnezeder, Hiroyuki Sanada, Garret Dillahunt, and Tig Notaro. I’ve been on a few Zack Snyder sets in the past and I’m always impressed by how he manages the set. Enjoy.
“In all my years of doing press, I’ve been repeatedly asked about the white gaze. Rarely have I been set upon about the Black gaze; or the gaze distilled.” This is something. Filmmaker Barry Jenkins’ latest is now available to watch on Amazon Prime – The Underground Railroad, a series set in the antebellum South. Jenkins explains that he finally had this realization about “the gaze” while working on filming this series, and started to shoot these dialogue-less moments during the production. Jenkins explains: “None of these shots are planned. Occasionally, when the spirit moved us, we stopped making the planned thing and focused on making THIS thing.” He started filming background actors and extras perfectly posed, staring, gazing into the camera. Featuring gorgeous costumes by Caroline Eseline. And that magnificent score by Jenkins’ regular, Nicholas Britell. It’s hard to watch and not be consumed by emotions. It’s a stunning work of cinema of its own, alongside the real series they were making, which is an additional layer of magic on top of what Jenkins usually pulls off with his films. It runs almost an hour long but all of is breathtaking.
“Who drives like a bat out of hell?” “Torreto.” Whoa! This is badass, I will admit. As dumb as these movies are, it is still cool that they do so many practical stunts, and shoot car scenes for real – including crashes and explosions and more. Universal has debuted a “Total Car-Nage” behind-the-scenes featurette for Fast & Furious 9, aka F9, the latest installment in the never-ending “Fast Saga”. “The action hurtles around the globe—from London to Tokyo, from Central America to Edinburgh, and from a secret bunker in Azerbaijan to the teeming streets of Tbilisi. Along the way, old friends will be resurrected, old foes will return, history will be rewritten, and the true meaning of family will be tested like never before.” Featuring Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, Jordana Brewster, Nathalie Emmanuel, Helen Mirren, and Charlize Theron. We’ve posted two official trailers for this, including a new one last month, and they’re moving ahead with the final June 25 opening. Get ready for “car-nage” in theaters this summer.
“One of the main story and design decisions is that it’s a spaceship that works with gravity.” Now playing on Netflix is the sci-fi thriller Stowaway, about a crew on a mission to Mars that discovers a surprise extra passenger on their voyage. I really enjoyed the film – the physics are real, the designs are real, it’s a story not so much about space as it is about how to deal with humanity. Directed by Joe Penna, most of the film takes place in the cramped quarters of their spaceship, along with a few perilous space walks. Netflix has debuted two behind-the-scenes videos about how they made the film – one with commentary / interviews, the other with only B-roll footage from the sound stages. They explain that this was filmed inside of the “tallest sound stage in the world” – at the Bavaria Studios near Munich, and also at MMC Studios in Cologne. And science communicator Scott Manley was a consultant to make sure the science was accurate. I’m a big fan of this film and these are fascinating videos showing how it was all made. The magic of movies! Always cool to see.
“I hope it’s both a reward for the fans, and a new experience.” Let the fight begin! Warner Bros has debuted a making of featurette for the new Mortal Kombat movie – watch the first trailer here. The video takes us through all of the main characters and actors who play them. This reboot based on the classic fighting video game has been in the works for years, ever since that short film Mortal Kombat: Rebirth shook up WB and got them to start working on it. The main cast: Lewis Tan as Cole Young, Jessica McNamee as Sonya Blade, Josh Lawson as Kano, Tadanobu Asano as Raiden, Ludi Lin as Liu Kang, Mehcad Brooks as Jax Briggs, Chin Han as Shang Tsung, Joe Taslim as Sub-Zero, Hiroyuki Sanada as Scorpion, Sisi Stringer as Mileena, and Max Huang as Kung Lao. This is looking SO good! Big action, big performances, big sets, epic fights. Can’t wait! The film’s opening is now set for April 23rd, despite what the posters say.
“Every film you’re trying to challenge yourself.” Dive into an intense, mind-expanding 10-minute featurette for Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, now playing in movie theaters around the world (but not yet in the US). This behind-the-scenes video originally played in front of the Inception re-release in theaters this month, before the world premiere of Tenet. Now it’s available to watch online! The extensive (but mostly spoiler-free) behind-the-scenes look covers everything from production locations like Tallinn and Mumbai, to working with the actors, to working with cinematographer Hoyte Van Hoytema – one of the coolest. John David Washington stars in Tenet as “The Protagonist”, with a big cast including Robert Pattinson, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Debicki, Kenneth Branagh, Clémence Poésy, and Dimple Kapadia. This featurette may not change your mind if you’re unsure about seeing this movie, but it’ll definitely make you fascinated by the hard work that goes into making massive blockbusters with intricate action set pieces.
“We wanted audiences to feel like they could reach through the screen and touch this world.” One of the best stop-motion animation studios is celebrating 15 years this year! Laika Animation originally opened in 2005 and worked on their first feature film Corpse Bride. The first film made entirely by the studio was Coraline, which opened in theaters in 2009. They followed up with four more outstanding stop-motion animated films: ParaNorman in 2012, The Boxtrolls in 2014, Kubo and the Two Strings in 2016, and Missing Link in 2019 – just last year. To celebrate the anniversary, Fandango released a 5-minute long behind-the-scenes celebratory featurette, looking back at their history and their work. I’m a big fan of Laika and almost always enjoy their movies (my personal favorite is still Kubo, also ParaNorman). This wonderful video shows how much work goes into each project and all the people crafting every piece of the production.
“What is that mission that will be he most challenging & most difficult?” Eon has released a new behind-the-scenes featurette for No Time to Die, the 25th Bond movie and the fifth movie starring Daniel Craig as 007. The focus in this video is on director Cary Joji Fukunaga, one of the most inspired filmmakers they’ve chosen in this era to deliver Craig’s final Bond movie. When No Time to Die begins, Bond has left active service. His peace is short-lived when his old friend Felix Leiter turns up asking for help, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology. The cast includes Jeffrey Wright as Felix, Ralph Fiennes as M, Naomie Harris as Moneypenny, Ben Whishaw as Q; plus Rami Malek, Ana de Armas, Léa Seydoux, Lashana Lynch, Billy Magnussen, Rory Kinnear, and David Dencik. This is a beautifully-edited, exciting featurette that should get you in the mood for this Bond finale.
“There are people out there… People worth saving.” Ready for some football monsters! Paramount Pics has released the “Big Game” TV spot for A Quiet Place: Part II, the sequel to John Krasinski & Emily Blunt’s sci-fi monster thriller A Quiet Place from 2018. They’ve also included a short behind-the-scenes featurette for the film, to give us a closer look at Krasinski’s work putting together this sequel. Following the traumatic events at home (seen in the first movie), the Abbott family now face the terrors of the outside world. Forced to venture into the unknown, they realize that the creatures that hunt by sound are not the only threats that lurk beyond the sand path. Starring Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds, and Noah Jupe as the Abbott family. Newcomers featured in this sequel include Cillian Murphy, Djimon Hounsou, Wayne Duvall, and Lauren-Ashley Cristiano. This full trailer was compelling, I’m excited to see what they’re cookin’ up.
It’s 11:11. Are you ready for a deep dive on Us? Our friend H. Nelson Tracey has unveiled another “Reading List” video for Jordan Peele’s horror movie Us, which opened in theaters almost a year ago. Nelson goes through the movie and points out books, other visual patterns, and the repetition of 11:11 throughout it. “For this video essay, I point out some of the hidden books, as well as other clues and details hidden in plain sight you may have missed when you saw the movie.” I always enjoy these hidden details video essays from Nelson. And this is a good compliment to other articles pointing out Peele’s influences & Easter Eggs in Us.