Matt Reeves to reboot 'Batman' without Ben Affleck - Silver Screen Beat
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Ben Affleck’s future in the DCEU in limbo as new report reveals Matt Reeves’ plan for Batman

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Affleck Batman
WARNER BROS.

Rumors have been swirling around for more than a year now that Ben Affleck is looking to step away from his role as Batman in the DC Extended Universe once and for all after starring in just two movies, including 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and last year’s Justice League, the latter grossing just $229 million in its entire domestic run.

Buried deep within Deadline’s report about Geoff Johns stepping down DC’s chief creative officer yesterday is the mention of Matt Reeves and his plans to reboot Batman for what is being described as a “new standalone franchise,” which will likely feature a new actor in the role of the iconic DC superhero.

Affleck was previously attached to direct the standalone Batman movie but later stepped away from the project last January after it became clear that he could not “do both jobs to the level they require,” meaning handling both directorial and lead actor duties. Warner Bros. also decided to scrap Affleck’s script, which he had co-written with Johns and Chris Terrio.

In an interview last December, Affleck didn’t seem so sure about his future in the DC Extended Universe himself after being asked if he planned on coming back for another movie as Batman or if he would rather prefer to focus his attention on other projects outside the superhero realm.

“I think a lot of different possibilities I think for the way the DC Universe could go, and I will just follow my interests in pursuing that,” Affleck told the Daily Sabah. “And I know that I love working with this group of people, and it was a real joy for me to make [Justice League],” adding that he always evaluates “this stuff on the merit of the material.”

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Amid an intense wave of backlash, the Academy has decided to air all Oscar categories live

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MATT SAYLES/INVISION

In the wake of an intense wave of backlash, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Friday that they will be reversing their controversial decision to present four technical categories their awards during commercial breaks at the 91st Oscars ceremony next Sunday.

“The Academy has heard the feedback from its membership regarding the Oscar presentation of four awards – Cinematography, Film Editing, Live Action Short, and Makeup and Hairstyling,” the AMPAS board of governors said in a statement. “All Academy Awards will be presented without edits, in our traditional format.”

Sources familiar with the matter tell Silver Screen Beat that the Academy’s change of heart came after AMPAS president John Bailey and CEO Dawn Hudson met with members of the group’s cinematography branch Thursday evening to discuss the decision, which did not go over well with many Hollywood filmmakers and craftspeople.

“Relegating these essential cinematic crafts to lesser status in this 91st Academy Awards ceremony is nothing less than an insult to those of us who have devoted our lives and passions to our chosen profession,” read an open letter to the Academy signed by dozens of industry figures, including directors Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee and cinematographers Roger Deakins and Rachel Morrison.

The letter ends with a quote from Academy member Seth Rogen, who tweeted earlier this week, “What better way to celebrate achievements in film than to NOT publicly honour the people whose job it is to film things.”

The 91st Oscars will air live from the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, February 24 on ABC.

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‘Star Wars: Episode IX’ officially wraps principal photography with an emotional cast photo

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Star Wars: Episode IX
LUCASFILM LTD.

Star Wars: Episode IX director J.J. Abrams announced today via Twitter that the highly anticipated final chapter in the Skywalker saga has officially wrapped principal photography, leading us to believe that our first look at the film could be just around the corner.

“It feels impossible, but today wrapped photography on Episode IX. There is no adequate way to thank this truly magical crew and cast. I’m forever indebted to you all,” Abrams wrote in his tweet this afternoon.

Abrams’ tweet also includes an emotional set photo featuring cast members Daisy Ridley, who plays Rey, John Boyega, who plays Finn, and Oscar Isaac, who plays Poe Dameron, embracing on their final day of shooting.

“That’s a wrap on Star Wars episode 9 and the end to a chapter of my life that I couldn’t be more thankful for,” Boyega wrote in a tweet of is own. “What a process! It really has been a joy to be in these movies surrounded by amazing people. JJ, thank you for making my dreams come true.”

Abrams, who launched a new era of Star Wars with The Force Awakens in 2015, will now take Episode IX to the editing bay, where it will remain in post-production for the next 10 months or so until its December 20 release date.

You can check out the tweets from Abrams and Boyega below.

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Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron strike up a hilarious romance in the first ‘Long Shot’ trailer

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Long Shot
LIONSGATE

Ahead of the film’s world premiere at the South by Southwest Film Festival next month, Lionsgate has released the first trailer for Long Shot, the eagerly awaited romantic comedy starring Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen from The Night Before and 50/50 director Jonathan Levine.

Long Shot follows Fred Flarsky (Rogen), an unemployed journalist who reunites with his first crush (and former babysitter) Charlotte Field (Theron), one of the most influential women in the world. As she begins eyeing a run for the Presidency, she hires Fred as her speechwriter, making him a fish out of water on her elite team.

However, despite Fred’s unpreparedness for her glamorous lifestyle in the limelight, sparks begin to fly as their unmistakable chemistry leads to a round-the-world romance and a serious of unexpected (and somewhat dangerous) incidents.

In addition to the dynamic duo that is Rogen and Theron, Long Shot‘s incredible ensemble cast also includes the likes of O’Shea Jackson Jr., Alexander Skarsgård, Andy Serkis, Ravi Patel, Randall Park, and June Diane Raphael.

Long Shot will have its world premiere at South by Southwest on March 9 before opening in theaters nationwide on May 3.

You can check out the newly released trailer for the film below.

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