Catching you up on some of our favorite things to come out of CinemaCon this week:
NCM is on location at CinemaCon 2015 at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, and the film industry’s largest US gathering got off to a great start on Monday and Tuesday.
They’re back, Pitches! Universal Pictures and director, producer and co-star Elizabeth Banks hosted the industry premiere of “Pitch Perfect 2,” and the crowd went wild. Full of surprises and special guests, the evening was aca-mazing as CinemaCon kicks-off its fifth year celebrating the moviegoing experience. At the “Pitch Perfect 2” after party at the Omnia Nightclub, presented by Dolby Laboratories and Universal Pictures, guests enjoyed a music and dance-filled evening complete with drinks, food, a great view of the Las Vegas Strip, and special live entertainment from some of the a capella stars and groups from the film, including the Filharmonic.
Paramount kicked off the first of the studio presentations, and brought some big guns to the stage. First up was Arnold Schwarzenegger, who showcased a full 12 minutes of footage from Terminator Genysis. It was everything fans have come to love from the franchise, after which Ah-nold joked, “I told you it would kick a$$” and bid the audience “Hasta la vista, Exhibitors!” (Deadline)
Following next was a slate of other new films including Daddy’s Home (a hysterical comedy starring Mark Walberg and Will Farrell in dad vs. step-dad); Paranormal Activity: Ghost Dimension; an original horror comedy Scout’s Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse (formally Scouts vs. Zombies); a reboot of the horror franchise Rings; Thirteen Hours, a war movie set around a daring rescue mission in Benghazi; Ninja Turtles II featuring classic villains Beebop and Rocksteady; a new Ben-Hur (but not a remake!); Star Trek 3; a new Paramount Animation family film Monster Trucks; and The Big Short, now in production in New Orleans.
Then the one and only Derek Zoolander took to the stage with a special message for the crowd, promising his latest “documentary” film would reveal all the clothes he’s modeled, foods he’s stopped eating, and the new looks he’s been working on, including the special PSA (Per Screen Average), telling the crowd that it will “blow the multi right off your plexes.”
The grand finale was Tom Cruise, who along with along co-stars Simon Pegg and Rebecca Ferguson, showed some spectacular footage from the upcoming Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation. Cruise assured the crowd of theater owners that he will “always do everything I can to entertain an audience and put people in your theaters,” and he was not kidding — the latest jaw-dropping stunt where he is hanging off the side of a plane is no green screen, folks. The star and aerobatic pilot, who admitted to being “scared sh**less,” was attached to a plane with a small harness while wearing special contact lenses so he could keep his eyes open during the filming, climbing from take-off to 5000 feet before landing to do it all again and again — it took eight takes to get all the camera angles just right!
Warner Bros. Pictures
Warner Bros. was up next, with a literal parade of stars from a long list of their upcoming films including Charlize Theron, Tom Hardy, Henry Cavill, Michael B. Jordan, Sylvester Stallone, Sofia Vergara, Reese Witherspoon, Dwayne Johnson, Channing Tatum, Joe Manganiello, Ed Helms, Christina Applegate, Adrian Grenier and Luke Bracey.
WB showcased trailers and footage from a large upcoming film slate includes the female buddy comedy Hot Pursuit, the action-packed Mad Max: Fury Road, the global earthquake event San Andreas, Entourage, Magic Mike XXL, Vacation (a grown Rusty Grizwold returns to Wally World!), The Man from U.N.C.L.E., the visually lush Peter Pan origin story, Pan, The Intern, Point Break and of course, Batman vs. Superman.
A few of the movies especially stood out, including Black Mass, the chilling and compelling story of the most notorious criminal in Boston starring a virtually unrecognizable Johnny Depp as Whitey Bolger in what could be a performance for the ages. Another top pick is Creed, which Sylvester Stallone pointed out is not Rocky’s story, but really the story of Apollo Creed — what he stood for and what he passed on to his son, the next generation of fighter. On an epic scale, Ron Howard’s In the Heart of the Sea, the incredible true story that inspired Moby Dick, brings the dangers of whaling to life in striking 3D in this famous tale of the wreck of the ship Essex.
Advance Screening of 20th Century Fox’s Spy
The day ended with an advance screening of Melissa’s McCarthy’s new comedy, Spy. The action-comedy, also starring Jude Law, Rose Byrne and Jason Statham, will be a guaranteed good time at the theaters when it is released in early June. McCarthy shines as the mousey Susan Cooper, tasked with giving up her desk job to go into the field when the rest of the CIA operatives’ covers are blown. The film is written, produced and directed by Paul Feig, who also brought us The Heat and Bridesmaids. He has also been nominated for CinemaCon’s Comedy Filmmaker of the Year. After the screening, attendees were transported to ‘Club SPY with special performances by Ivy Levan and Bad Seed Rising, both featured on the film’s soundtrack.
Stay tuned for more CinemaCon news from our NCM team as we bring you the hottest news from Las Vegas this week!