Disney/Pixar's "UP" to Open Cannes -- Disney Chairman Dick Cook and John Lasseter Speak Out! 

It's a joyful day at the house of Mouse! Their upcoming 3-D collaboration with Pixar, "UP," has been selected as the opening night film at this year's Cannes Film Festival.

This is a very prestigious honor in so many ways!

First, it's the first time ever an animated film has opened Cannes. Second, it's also the first 3-D film to ever open the Festival, and the first Disney film to kick off the Riviera extravaganza!

Opening night of the Cannes Film Festival is Wednesday, May 13th!

As expected, Disney and Pixar are both in jubilant mood!

Mr. Dick Cook, who is super-sweet in person (check out my interview with him for "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End" premiere) says:

"It’s a great honor for The Walt Disney Studios, and our incredibly talented cast members at Pixar Animation Studios, to have ‘UP’ selected as the first animated feature to ever open the Cannes Film Festival. Adding to this historic milestone, ‘UP’ is also the first digital 3D film, and the first Disney film selected for the coveted opening night slot at Cannes. We are so proud of this terrific movie, and can’t wait to share it with the filmmaking community and festival-goers on Wednesday, May 13, and the rest of the world starting on May 29th."

And John Lasseter, chief creative officer, Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios, adds,

“We are absolutely thrilled that the Cannes Film Festival has chosen ‘UP’ to be its prestigious opening night offering. This is a huge step for animation, and further supports our belief that a great animated film is simply a great film. Pete Docter, the director of 'UP,' and the amazing team of artists, animators, technicians, and storytellers at Pixar have worked so hard to create a great motion picture that is impressively fresh, funny, and powerfully emotional.”

I can't wait to see this film! By the way, "UP" is a comedy adventure in which 78-year-old Carl Fredricksen fulfils his dream of a great adventure when he ties thousands of balloons to his house and flies away to the wilds of South America, only to discover that he has brought with him his biggest nightmare, a 9-year-old Wilderness Explorer stowaway.

"UP" is directed by Pete Docter, director of "MONSTERS, INC." who also developed the story and characters for "TOY STORY," Pixar’s first full length animated feature film, for which he also served as supervising animator. He served as a storyboard artist on "A BUG’S LIFE," and wrote the initial story treatment for "TOY STORY 2." The film is co-directed by Bob Peterson, also a screenwriter and author of "FINDING NEMO."

With that pedigree, can this film go wrong? Well you know, so far, the Disney/Pixar team has never been wrong! :happy

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Natasha Richardson Dies at 45! 

The family of Natasha Richardson says the actress has died.

This is sad. I met her for the movie "Evening" in 2007 and she was a very sweet lady, a great interviewee, and a splendid actress!

Richardson starred in many thought-provoking films, and won a Tony for the stage revival of "Cabaret." She died after suffering an apparent head injury from a skiing accident. She was 45.

She's survived by her husband, Liam Neeson, their sons, and her mother, the great Vanessa Redgrave.

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"I Love You, Man" Movie Review -- The Bromantic Love Affair Between Paul Rudd and Jason Segel 

Male-bonding is the term du jour in pop culture. The word “bromance” even entered our lexicon. For the uninitiated, bromance pertains to the intense brotherly bond between two males. There’s even an MTV reality show called “Bromance” starring “The Hills’” hunk Brody Jenner picking his male best friend among the contestants.

The new comedy “I Love You, Man” has the same premise as “Bromance.” Paul Rudd (“Role Models”) and Jason Segel (“Forgetting Sarah Marshall”) shamelessly display male bonding on the big screen. And dare I say, the movie is pretty funny.

Rudd stars as Peter Klaven, a successful young L.A. real estate agent who proposes to his girlfriend, Zooey Rice (“The Office’s” Rashida Jones). Peter realizes that unlike his fiancé, who immediately calls her closest gal pals to share the news, he has no close buds. Read More...

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Director Michael Bay Says No "Transformers 3" for Him! 

So yesterday, Paramount and Dreamworks announced the release date of "Transformers 3" to be July 1, 2011.

When I went to the franchise director Michael Bay's website, he's saying there's just no way that can happen with him on the helm! Uh-oh...

Bay writes:

I said I was taking off a year from Transformers. Paramount made a mistake in dating Transformers 3 - they asked me on the phone - I said yes to July 4 - but for 2012 - whoops! Not 2011!!! That would mean I would have to start prep in September. No way. My brain needs a break from fighting robots.


That can be a blessing for the film! The "Harry Potter" franchise benefits from the ever-changing gallery of directors, not that I'm comparing the boy wizard with huge robots :happy

But I did enjoy the first "Transformers," looking forward to the sequel, then we'll talk threequel after.

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Say What? Bruno Offered Ron Paul Hot, Passionate Gay Sex!  

Oh the things Sacha Baron Cohen will do for the sake of art! And, oh the things a politician will do for the sake of getting elected!

When the two meet, well, gay sex galore! Well, not quite.

As you may have heard, Cohen is busy adapting another character from his HBO show, this time, it's the gay Austrian Bruno! Picture "Borat" as a gay Austrian and you'll get the drift.

So the 20 minutes of the film was screened at South by Southwest, and apparently, there was a five-minute scene where Bruno seduces Texas congressman and former Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul.

The premise of the film, which is being released July 10th of this year, tells the story of Bruno, a flamboyant TV host whose show gets canceled in Austria, so following his own version of the great American dream, he heads to the US to try to resurrect his career.

Sounds very "Borat-like" right? But I'm a big fan of Cohen, and his characters' misadventures, so I'm so there!

You want to read the scene-by-scene spoiler of what happened when Bruno meets Ron Paul? Take a lookie here.

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