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Exclusive : Backdraft II confirmed; Hannibal star to headline!

We have the scoop on a sequel to ’90s hit “Backdraft”

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UPDATE:

“Backdraft 2”, which Moviehole first told you about in March, has been confirmed by Universal. Shooting is now underway in Romania on the film (which will also utilise locations in Toronto and Chicago).

Joe Anderson (Mason Verger on “Hannibal”) is playing Brian’s nephew Sean McCaffrey in the long-awaited follow-up. William Baldwin reprises his role from the original. Gonzalo López-Gallego directs.

Alisha Bailey, Ross O’Hennessy, Sal Longbardo and Sia Alipour also among cast. Aside from Baldwin, Donald Sutherland is making an appearance as Ronald, the unhinged arsonist from the 1991 original.

Various set pics from the Romanian side of the shoot have started showing up online, here’s a few :

Previous exclusive (from March):

Spanish director Gonzalo López-Gallego, best known for 2011 sci-fi thriller “Apollo 18”, has been charged with the mission of reigniting one of the biggest titles in the Universal library.

The studio has tapped the filmmaker for its “Backdraft” sequel, tentatively titled “Backdraft II”, with filming set to begin in Romania and Toronto next month. William Baldwin is expected to reprise his role from the original 1991 blockbuster.

Film’s central character will be Sean McCaffrey, the grown son of Kurt Russell’s character from the first film (see below, pictured with on-screen mother Rebecca De Mornay in the original), an investigator with the Chicago F.D who still holds his uncle (Baldwin) responsible for the death of his pop.

The bad guys in this one are a group of agents sneaking a missile out of the country, using a series of deadly fires as a distraction.

Raffaella De Laurentiis produces.

Exciting news for fans of the original film, particularly with the character of Brian McCaffrey back, and a capable director in the helmer’s spot. Looking forward.

“Backdraft”, directed by Ron Howard and penned by Gregory Widen, starred Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, Scott Glenn, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rebecca De Mornay, Donald Sutherland, Robert De Niro, Jason Gedrick and J. T. Walsh. The film, made for 75 mill, didn’t spark a light with most critics but most did applaud it’s blazingly brilliant special effects and very impressive action sequences (with many of the actors performing their own stunts).

The film received three Academy Award nominations for Sound Effects Editing, Visual Effects and Best Sound.

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Exclusive : The Ewoks will return!

A small-screen series featuring the Empire-hating creatures could be on the way

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Is it the Endor or just the beginning?

Unless the wi-fi has been playing up in the Cantina, you’ll be aware that Disney’s streaming channel Disney + are about to ‘force’ a couple of new “Star Wars” related series on us – most notably, the recently wrapped “The Mandalorian” (which is apparently terrific), from EP Jon Favreau.

And it won’t end there, with the house of mouse and the house of Kennedy already secretly working on other “Star Wars” projects that’ll premiere on the small screen.
One of those upcoming may feature the return of the Ewoks.

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, the pint-sized moon creatures are one of the most recognizable species in the “Star Wars” universe. And with Disney+ not just in the business of making shows for us, older “Star Wars” fans, but also the excitable younglings, it should be no surprise to hear that a new Ewoks series is being discussed.

The news of the Empire-hating Ewoks’ return to the screen – which comes courtesy a reputable insider, someone who has also provided us with extra info on a scoop we ran last week on “The Quarry” to star Michael Shannon and Shea Whigham, which we’ll run soon – will no doubt be music to the ears of toy retailers, who’ll likely sell furballs in the millions once the show hits. It’s unlikely to be part of the first phase of “Star Wars” shows, which are rumored to kick off around Halloween, but could be part of the second run, rumored to launch in the next 12-18 months.

The Ewoks made their debut in “Return of the Jedi” on the bigscreen before getting their own solo outing in 1984 telemovie “The Ewok Adventure” (aka “Caravan of Courage”). A second telemovie “Battle for Endor” aired in 1985. That same year ABC premiered the popular animated series “Ewoks”, which ran for two seasons.

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Exclusive : Whigham, Shannon reunite for The Quarry

Duo previously co-starred in Paramount mini-series “Waco”

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Confirmation today on a solid-sounding project, headlined by two fantastic actors, I was tipped off to a few days back.

“Waco” and “Boardwalk Empire” co-stars Shea Whigham and Michael Shannon will reunite for “The Quarry”, scripted and directed by Scott Teems. This one is shooting later this month in New Orleans with the “To the Stars” team of Laura D. Smith and Kristin Mann producing.

Teems is one to watch out for. His work on “Rectify”, of which he’s written many episodes and directed a couple, are some of the best of the SundanceTV drama.

Film tells the ‘Banshee’-like account of a man, on the run from his own sins, who finds himself in a small border town in Texas, impersonating a reverend. The town are quickly drawn to the man’s unorthodox sermons – but so is the police chief (Shannon), who find’s the reverend’s presence interesting for a different reason.

Michael Shannon and Shea Whigham in “Waco” (2018)

Academy Award Nominee Catalina Sandino Moreno (“Maria Full of Grace”) and Bobby Soto (“Besties”) also star.

Floridian Whigham, who is currently filming limited series “Modern Love” for Amazon Studios, recently wrapped “Joker” for director Todd Phillips and Warner Bros. his upcoming credits include John Pollono’s “Small Engine Repair”, the comedy “Vampires Vs. The Bronx” and “Low Tide” for writer-director Kevin McMullin.

Shannon recently wrapped Rian Johnson’s “Knive’s Out”, and will next appear in Seth Savoy’s action-crime drama “Echo Boomers”.

These two were absolutely magic on screen together in Paramount’s “Waco” mini-series as Mitch Decker and Gary Noesner, respectively, so expect more fireworks here.

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Exclusive : Blood Moon set for May start ; casting update

A girl with unusual powers escapes from a mental asylum

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Ana Lily Amirpour fantasy “Blood Moon” is inching forward, with a mid-May shoot now locked in, Moviehole can confirm.

As reported during AFM in October, Kate Hudson, Zac Efron and Craig Robinson have signed the film, which tells of a girl with “unusual powers” who escapes from a mental asylum in New Orleans.

The film, produced by John Lesher (“Birdman”, “Fury”), begins its shoot in New Orleans on May 18.

The search is on for a fourth key player, a young actor to play the role of Hudson’s 10-year-old son. Described as a “cool rad weirdo hero. He’s grown up with a single mom, who’s gone a lot so he’s pretty self sufficient. He’s a creative kid with street smarts. Like his mom, he’s a survivor.”

One of the best new filmmakers on the circuit, Amirpour directed the ‘past perfect’ episode on the first season of “Castle Rock” last year.  Though I haven’t read it myself, the script for “Blood Moon” is apparently a “winner”.

No word on a release date.

 

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