Total Recall Director Interview: Len Wiseman On Remakes, Fan Expectations, And Action Scenes

Total Recall, director Len Wiseman’s 2012 remake of Paul Verhoeven’s memorable (I say classic) 1990 sci-fi actioner, is available on DVD and Blu-ray today. While there was certainly some fan outcry regarding the decision to remake Total Recall, Weisman’s movie turned out to be a fun, polished production that paid homage to the original film while putting a different spin on Philip K. Dick’s short story “We Can Remember It For You Wholesale."

This week we had an opportunity to sit down with Len Wiseman and discuss the daunting task of remaking a popular movie, managing fan expectations, his approach to directing action scenes, and some of the keys to balancing his personal relationship (he’s married to Total Recall star Kate Beckinsale) in a professional environment.

Initially Wiseman wanted no part of remaking Total Recall. “My first response was absolutely not” he said, “because the nostalgia of a movie like that. At a certain point you are remaking nostalgia which is very tough to do. When I read the script and found that the (remake) was not traveling to Mars, I was both shocked and extremely interested because it was going in a direction I couldn’t foresee and that was exciting. I became more aware of (the story) in a different kind of arena. A bit closer to how the original short story alluded to Mars but never went to Mars. That’s what Verhoeven did with his adaptation of it. They took it, set most of it on Mars. So the fact that it was different, that’s what really attracted me. But then you still have the nervousness, whether it goes to Mars or it doesn’t go to Mars; you’re still remaking nostalgia. Which is always nerve racking."

In order to create his own vision of Total Recall, early on Len distanced himself from the original movie. “The script was very different than the film that I remembered as a teenager. I wanted to absorb all that and get my ideas before I went back and watched the movie again. Later into the process I did watch it again and was kind of shocked at certain things I did not (originally) pick up on. I think as a teenager I was just going to watch the next Arnold (Schwarzeneger) movie. I wasn’t looking at it as the Phillip K. Dick story that it was. I wasn’t really looking for the sci-fi theme. It was interesting seeing it as an adult. But I really wanted to stay away. I watched it and then that was it. It wasn’t something that we went back to or that the writer’s went back to."

Check out an exclusive behind the scenes clip from Total Recall after the jump.

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Tonight On AOTS: Vinnie Jones From Company Of Heroes & Blair Butler's Top 7 Comics For Fresh Ink

Tonight on Attack of the Show, Michael Kosta and Candace Bailey bring you Vinnie Jones from Company of Heroes, Blair Butler's top seven comics of all time for Fresh Ink and a cooking lessons with Epic Meal Time. Chris Gore also reviews a slew of new Blu-ray releases for DVDuesday, including Looper, Total Recall and Premium Rush. Tune in tonight 7/6c!

The Expendables 3: Jackie Chan Jumps On Board

While plans are still in the early stages for The Expendables 3, it appears that the third entry in Sylvester Stallone's action all-stars franchise has nabbed yet another A-list entry in martial arts legend, Jackie Chan.

At the Kuala Lampur premiere press conference for his film, CZ12 (aka, Chinese Zodiac,) the actor confirmed that he will join Stallone in the next cavalcade of action icons. However, Chan's involvement in the third film will not be without a caveat. According to Chan:

"Sly had invited me to be in "Expendables 2" but I was too busy filming "CZ12" and couldn't make a commitment to the film. But he did extend his invitation to the third movie, which I agreed on the condition that I will be appearing as more than just a minor role with a few scenes."

While its doubtful Chan will make the same drastic turn that Jean-Claude Van Damme did when he played the villain in the last film, the signature chopsocky stylings and age-defying gymnastics of Chan will no doubt provide plenty of memorable highlights for the upcoming threequel of the unapologetic action series.

When asked of his own popular action franchise, Rush Hour, Chan's outlook was not quite as hopeful. Plans for another buddy action film series, Skip Tracer are in the works. While it's possible that film could still morph into Rush Hour 4, Chan seems keen on the idea of 2007's Rush Hour 3 being left as the final entry.


Star Trek Into Darkness Theatrical Trailer Hits

The second trailer for Star Trek Into Darkness, which premiered this past weekend with The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, has made its online debut.

A few weeks after hazy hints from the first teaser trailer made us scratch our heads even more about the identity of the film's irascible enemy played by Benedict Cumberbatch, we're given a trailer that's seemingly more about the evolution of Chris Pine's Captain James T. Kirk.

Could the carnage caused by Cumberbatch's malevolent misanthrope, currently being referred to as "John Harrison," be the result of a cocky young captain's complacency? Check out the trailer below! 

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The Hobbit is finally in studios! So are you ready to watch this epic movie? Jeff Cannata and Devin Faraci join Alex Albrecht on Attack of the Show to discuss how this film will hold up to the original Lord of the Rings trilogy, the 48 fps controversy and more.

Everything You Need To Know For The Hobbit »

Tags: Movies, TV, Videos

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey has released the 10th and last of its traditional video production blogs.

Now that the first part of the Tolkien-inspired trilogy is at a theater near you, this video takes us behind the scenes of the most satisfying stage of the filmmaking process: the premiere event. (Although, according to Yogurt from Spaceballs, the satisfying step would be "merchandising, merchandising.")

Watch as director, Peter Jackson enjoyed the fruits of his labor at the film's big premiere in his home country of New Zealand back on November 28. Besides the overwhelming fanfare, it serves as visual evidence as to how much one film series has affected the economy of an entire country.

Kiwi national treasure, Neil Finn of Split Enz and Crowded House fame was also on hand to sing theme, "Misty Mountains (Cold)." From a financial standpoint, Jackson and company should hope that, unlike the title of one of Finn's signature songs, history WILL repeat.

A Good Day To Die Hard: Fiery New Poster

Upcoming sequel, A Good Day To Die Hard has released a new poster featuring heroes, John McClane (Bruce Willis) and his son, Jack McClane (Jai Courtney) looking armed and angry, surrounded by FLAMES!

Indeed, for a fifth time, NYPD's John McClane finds himself at the wrong place at the wrong time. In this instance, the wrong place is Moscow, Russia, and the wrong time is Valentine's Day 2013, when the film hits theaters.

However, he will have the help of his own flesh and blood in son, Jack; a CIA operative who happens to be in town investigating the theft of nuclear weapons, which either occurred at the hands of terrorists, or vodka-infused Russian farmers who wanted to film something unique to upload on YouTube.

Check out this badass new poster, exclusive to Entertainment Weekly, below as the McClane boys find themselves out of the pan and literally in the fire. They're clearly ready to show Mother Russia that "yippee-ki-yay" is not just an interjection, but a life philosophy.

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Star Wars: Episode 7 Could Have Its Director Next Month

It appears that as soon as January, we could know who will take the helm in the upcoming first film of the Star Wars sequel trilogy, which has already targeted a 2015 release date.

With the announcement of Disney's $4.05 billion acquisition of George Lucas' own Galactic Empire (also known as "The Ultimate October Surprise") still sinking in for fans, the spigot of news had seemingly shut for the holiday season. Well, come New Year, the news should start flowing faster than a certain Corellian freighter making the Kessel Run.

Lucasfilm President, Kathleen Kennedy briefly talked with ComicBook.com, and while she claimed to have "no immediate update," she did reveal that the script by Toy Story 3 and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire scribe, Michael Arndt is being worked on as we speak and pre-production for the film will kick-off in the spring.

However, she also concluded that "hopefully in January" there could be an official announcement of some kind to make. -- An announcement that, with two short years until the film's release, would likely regard the much-speculated identity of the director.

Names like Matthew Vaughn, Jon Favreau, David Fincher, and even Steven Spielberg seem to be in circulation for this directorial dream job of all dream jobs. However, only one will get to raise this proverbial X-Wing from the swamp.


It seems surreal that at the strike of midnight, the long-awaited release of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will finally be here. Because of that, it's a perfect time to go back, one decade removed, and reexamine the set of films that left fans desperately screaming for more, The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

The folks at Screen Junkies have done just that, giving us an analysis of the Rings films which remind us that heartfelt sacrifices lose some significance when they get reversed with a white wardrobe makeover and that the people of Middle Earth win wars with an unseen powerful weapon that annihilates stuff inconvenient to the plot.

Those who are uninitiated with director, Peter Jackson's Tolkien films should not expect a 90 minute tour de force of disposable action. Instead, these films require a love for fake languages and mythology, artful shots of people walking in grandiose landscapes all over Kiwi country, and, most importantly, a strong bladder. The Hobbit should be no different, so sip those giant sodas at a reasonable pace.

Let us all not forget that in this holiday season, every time a bell rings, Sean Bean dies in something again.

The Wolverine Releases New Motion Poster

There's still quite some time before Hugh Jackman unleashes his adamantium instruments once again in next summer's The Wolverine. However, a new international motion poster has been released showing a somber, sword-wielding Logan who clearly isn't afraid of catching a cold in the Japanese night rain.

Despite its high profile, The Wolverine has been rather secretive when it comes to footage and photos. That may soon change, since director, James Mangold is looking to drop the first teaser trailer sometime in February 2013, which seems like a long time down the road, but in actuality is only about a month and a half away.

Until then, fans barely containing their beserker rage and end all sentences in "bub," can check below for the motion poster below, as well as some non-animated versions of it.

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When Guillermo del Toro makes a movie about giants robots duking it out with giant monsters, you get interested real quick. If that sentence wasn't somehow enough to sell you, then you should really take a look at Pacific Rim's debut trailer right now.

Giant robots with rocket-propelled elbows? Check. Fearsome, skyscraping monsters with rows of redwood-sized teeth? Check. Ellen McLain's digitized voice filling geeks with warm and fuzzy memories of GLaDOS? A big 'ol check right there too. Del Toro gets geeks, because he is one. See him prove it (not that he needed to!) next year in Pacific Rim.

Tags: Movies, Videos

It's that time again. Film expert Chris Gore joins Candace Bailey on Attack of the Show to discuss this week's hits and misses in DVD and Blu-ray releases for DVDuesday, like Ted, the first season of HBO's Girls and The Bourne Legacy.

Ted, The Bourne Legacy, Girls Season One DVD Review »

Which one would you buy, rent or pass?

Tags: Movies, TV, Videos

Angry Birds Movie Slings Forward


Posted December 12, 2012 - By Joseph Baxter

Angry Birds Movie Slings Forward

It appears that the Angry Birds phenomena will take its war against the hideous army of stationary green pigs to a theater near you. The game's creators, Rovio Entertainment have hired producers for what will be a 3D computer-generated full-length film.

After an explosion of merchandise and even a union with the monolithic Star Wars brand, Rovio's app-attacking avians will have the summer of 2016 targeted for their inevitable collision with the big screen. The Finland-based company has reportedly brought Despicable Me producer, John Cohen on board and executive producer, David Maisel, who has worked on Marvel's Avengers solo films like Iron Man 1 & 2, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, and Captain America: The First Avenger.

While your touchscreen finger will thankfully get a rest, what could Angry Birds bring to the box-office? (Without smashing it.)

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G.I. Joe Retaliation Reenlists With New Trailer

The hype machine for the delayed release of sequel, G.I. Joe: Retaliation is slowly powering back up.

A week after a new poster touting its 3D-converted status appeared, a new trailer has now emerged with minor (and I stress "minor") bits of new footage from the film as Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's Roadblock and company get ready to take Cobra's plot for world domination, shine it up real nice, turn it sideways, and stick it straight up their candy asses.

Check out the trailer below to see Die Hard, The Tooth Fairy, and Magic Mike decimating bad guys with extreme prejudice.

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Superman: Man Of Steel Unleashes New Trailer

A new trailer for Man of Steel has hit faster than a speeding bullet. Next summer's big screen return of the baddie-beating blue bomber who can't help being mistaken for either a bird or plane appears even more intense and drama-packed than we thought, which is always a good thing.

Director, Zack Snyder seemed to have no other choice than to take us through the motions of the many-times-told origin story of the super-powered space orphan who grew up on Earth in the sparsely-populated Smallville. However, the conflict and pure pathos that's being exuded by Henry Cavill as the new Clark Kent/Superman is quite in line with the tone of superhero films one would expect to find in a post-Nolan-Batman kind of world.

While the set of teaser trailers we got back at Comic-Con in July seemed to hint a film more centered around the struggles of young Kent coming to terms with his powers and what place he has in the world, this trailer sets that into the broader context. -- The broader context of becoming a world class yellow-sun-soaked ass beater!

Check it out below and see if the world is ready!

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