Bond 23 & Harry Potter 7, Part 2: CFQ Roundtable Podcast 2:43.2

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This week’s Round Table focuses on  “James Bond 23” (a.k.a., the 23rd 007 film, titled SKYFALL, which began production this week) and on HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS, PART 2, which makes it home video debut on Tuesday, November 8. As always, Cinefantastique Podcasters Lawrence French, Dan Persons, and Steve Biodrowski offer their perspicacious perspective on what’s happening in the worlds of Horror, Fantasy & Science Fiction film and television, including a look at the potential Oscar nominees for Best Animated Feature Film, and a sad farewell to producer Richard Gordon (FIEND WITHOUT A FACE), who passed away on November 1. Listen in, and have your Sense of Wonder expanded to celestial proportions!


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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1: November 19

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1The penultimate entry in the Harry Potter film series opens nationwide; advance screenings begin just after Thursday midnight (technically Friday morning.) The film will be available in standard engagements and in IMAX 3-D. Eying the approaching demise of their profitable franchise, Warner Brother has divided the final Harry Potter book into two films. Presumably this is the first time in cinematic history that the 7th installment in a franchise carried the designation “Part 1.” The plot: As Harry races against time and evil to destroy the Horcruxes, he uncovers the existence of three most powerful objects in the wizarding world: the Deathly Hallows.
Director: David Yates. Writers: Steve Kloves (screenplay), J.K. Rowling (novel). Stars: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Bill Nighy, Richard Griffiths, Julie Walters, Alan Rickman, Ralph Fiennes, Helena Bonham Carter.
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'Deathly Hallows' Won't Be 3-D

DeathlyHallowsPosterAccording to The Hollywood Reporter, Warner Brothers Pictures has abandoned its plans to release HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS Part I in 3-D.
In a statement released today, October 8th, the Warners said that when the New Harry Potter film  is released to  theaters on November 19th, it will be in 2-D,  and at IMAX venunes.

“We will not have a completed 3-D version of the film within our release date window. Despite everyone’s best efforts, we were unable to convert the film in its entirety and meet the highest standards of quality. We do not want to disappoint fans who have long-anticipated the conclusion of this extraordinary journey.”

DEATHLY HALLOWS directer David Yates is quoted as saying:  “This decision, which we completely support, underscores the fact that Warner Bros. has always put quality first.”
Seeing as the studio’s CRASH OF THE TITANS post-production 3-D conversion was judged as of varying and questionable quality by many fans and critics, this is probably a wise move on Warner’s part.
My opinion: 3-D films should be shot in 3-D, at least until the conversion process is perfected — and even so, it will probably never equal true 3-D production in quality, assuing that technology also progresses.
I’ve always seen 3-D as a gimmick, and a personal cause of eye strain. Kind of fun, but you wind up paying for it, in more ways than one, considering the additional charges for 3-D admissions now commonplace.

"Harry Potter" Alum Joins "Rise of the Apes"

Tom Felton as Draco Malfoy
Tom Felton as Draco Malfoy

Actor Tom Felton, who gained notoriety for his portrayal of the role of Draco Malfoy in the HARRY POTTER films, has signed on to 20th Century Fox’s RISE OF THE APES, a prequel to the beloved PLANET OF THE APES.
Felton’s character is said to be the co-owner of an ape facility along with his evil father (Brian Cox). Freida Pinto, John Lithgow, and James Franco make up a team of scientists whose work with an ape named Caesar spells doom for all of humanity.
It should be noted that the visual effects for RISE OF THE APES are being handled by Weta Digital, the some effects house that worked on AVATAR. You can expect photorealistic apes for the first time in the franchise’s history. RISE OF THE APES is slated for release on June 24, 2011.
Sources: ScreenRant, Twitter
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Radcliffe To Star In THE WOMAN IN BLACK

It seems that not everyone will be left in the dark once the lights go out at Hogwarts. Today it has been announced that HARRY POTTER star Daniel Radcliffe is set to play the role of Arthur Kipps in Hammer Film’s THE WOMAN IN BLACK.
Based on the novel by Susan Hill – as well as the subsequent stage play by Steven Mallatratt and successful 1989 TV movie – THE WOMAN IN BLACK tells the story of Arthur Kipps, a young lawyer who comes to Crythin Gifford, a small town in the English Countryside, to attend the funeral of an elderly widow. During his stay, he is witness to an evil specter that haunts the town and further investigations into the matter are met with fear and anger. The film is to be directed by James Watkins (EDEN LAKE) with the script being penned by Jane Goldman (KICK ASS, X-MEN:FIRST CLASS).
This is not the only film on Mr. Radcliffe’s plate as he is also slated to star in the remake of ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT and will play photographer Dan Eldon in the upcoming THE JOURNEY IS THE DESTINATION.
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Sense of Wonder: Sorcerer's Apprentice versus Harry Potter

The Sorcerer's Apprentice (2010)Over at the Kansas City Star, in a review of THE SORCERER’S APPRENTICE titled ‘The magic is lost to all but young viewers, Jason Heck asks the rhetorical question:

“Ever wonder what the ‘Harry Potter’ films would be like without an ounce of wit, grace or subtlety?”

To which I reply: We don’t need THE SORCERER’S APPRENTICE to tell us that!

Christmas Carol for DR. WHO

The BBC announced that production started Monday (July 12th) on the 2010 DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special for BBC One.
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The special will guest star Michael Gambon (Dumbledore in the HARRY POTTER films) Harry Potter, The Singing Detective) and opera singer Katherine Jenkins, in her first acting role.
Head writer and executive producer of DOCTOR WHO, Steven Moffat, gave the following information on the show:

“Oh, we’re going for broke with this one. It’s all your favourite Christmas movies at once, in an hour, with monsters and the Doctor and a honeymoon and — oh, you’ll see. I’ve honestly never been so excited about writing anything. I was laughing madly as I typed along to Christmas songs in April.
My neighbours loved it so much they all moved away and set up a website demanding my execution.
But I’m fairly sure they did it ironically.”

Ben Stephenson,the BBC Controller of Drama Commissioning, is quoted as saying:

“Matt Smith and Karen Gillan captivated audiences in their debut series and DOCTOR WHO’s clever twist on the much loved A Christmas Carol will thrill BBC One viewers this year with special guest stars Sir Michael Gambon and singing sensation Katherine Jenkins joining Amy and the Doctor for an unforgettable present!”

The DOCTOR WHO Christmas specials have become a yearly event, begining with tenth Doctor David Tennant’s debut on the revived series.

New 'Harry Potter' Trailer

Also premiering at the MTV MOVIE Awards was this new trailer for HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS, Part 1
Warner Brothers Pictures’ THE DEATHLY HALLOWS opens November 19th.
Directed by David Yates (THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE), with a screenplay by Steve Kloves (GOBLET OF FIRE), based on J.K. Rowling’s novel.
Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Allan Rickman, and Michael Gambon return on the side of good, with Helena Bonham Carter and Ralph Fiennes again embodying the darker forces.