Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Abrams' Bad Robot Released iPhone App

J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot has entered the iPhone app business with Action Movie FX. The free app comes with missile attack and car smash effects that can be added to a video shot from within the app. The profit comes from letting you buy additional effects at the cost of $.99 in packs of two. The current affects you can buy are chopper down/tornado action and airstrike/fire fight bundles. The app can be used on any camera enabled iOS device. More details can be found here, demo video below.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Abrams' Alcatraz Premiere Scheduled

After teasing a January premiere for JJ Abrams next television series, Fox has finally announced when the show will air. The pilot episode will are on Monday January 16th from 8-10pm. After that the show will start airing in its regular Mondays at 9PM time slot.

Monday, November 28, 2011

New Alcatraz Trailer

A new trailer for Alcatraz has debuted that hints a little bit more about the series which is executive produced by JJ Abrams. There still isn't a set date and time for the series debut but the trailer at least narrows it down to January.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Super 8's Star Trek Contest

Paramount is a new contest to promote the release of JJ Abrams' Super 8 on Blu-ray and DVD tomorrow called "Super 8: Watch It & Walk-On" sweepstakes. Two lucky winners will get walk-on roles in Star Trek 2 that JJ Abrams is directing and begins principle photography in January. Usually "walk-on" tends to be literal as essentially an extra what will "walk" in the background of whatever scene be it a street or the bridge of the Enterprise to help sell the scene. To win, go to and answer the Super 8 trivia test. The contest runs from November 20th to December 4th and open only to US residents that are 18 and up in age.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

JJ Abram's Alcatraz Showrunner Exit

It seems JJ Abrams' produced TV series Alcatraz has experienced a bit of a bump with the co-creator of show stepping down as executive producer. No reason has have been given nor any indication if it was her choice or Fox's. She will be replaced by Jennifer Johnson (Cold Case) and Daniel Pyne (Fracture). The series is expected to premiere sometime early 2012 but no date has been set.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

JJ Abrams Talks Revolution

In an interview with Hero Complex, JJ Abrams puts on his producer hat to talk about his upteenth show he is developing for television. Called "Revolution, the potential TV series is from the mind of Eric Kripke (Supernatural). In typical fashion, absolutely nothing is known about the pilot except the concept is an "epic adventure thriller". The very brief interview is basically Abrams talking about how much he likes working with Kripke and what a great writer he is. You can find the article here.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol Trailer

The official trailer for JJ Abrams' Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol has been released. I assume it will be attached to Puss N Boots and other new films s this weekend. The HD version can be found at Yahoo! Movies.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Mission: Impossible 4 Burj Khalifa Featurette

MSN UK has posted a brief featurette that shows Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol as it filmed at the world's tallest building, the Burj Khalifa. While Tom Cruise hung from the outside of the building, the director and crew where inside filming.

<a href='' target='_new' title='Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol: Burj Khalifa sizzle'>Video: Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol: Burj Khalifa sizzle</a>

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Person of Interest Gets Full Season Order

TV Line reports that JJ Abrams' Person of Interest has recieved a full season pick-up from CBS. The show has been averaging an outstanding near 14 million viewers each week. Not sure what the total episode count will be for the season but likely in the 20-24 ballpark.

New Mission Impossible IV Poster

Below is a new poster for Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, produced by JJ Abrams, that highlights core cast of the film.

Alcatraz Series Promo

Below is the first promo for the premiere episode of the JJ Abrams produced Alcatraz TV series that is coming to Fox in January. For now its just a teaser of what is to come and in typical Abrams' fashion reveals absolutely nothing.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Mission: Impossible Gifted Dark Knight Sales Boost

The IMAX screenings of Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol has been given a gift that will surely boost the sales. AMC Theatres has confirmed that the movie will get an IMAX only six minute prologue from The Dark Knight Rises. The chain further confirmed that the prologue is only for "real" IMAX theatres that take the 70mm film, not the digital IMAX that have popped up of late in modified theatres. The exact locations have not been worked out. Ghost Protocol hits IMAX on December 16th with widespread release on December 21st. The Dark Knight doesn't come out until next summer.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Writers Hired for Abrams' Micronauts

JJ Abrams has found his writers for Micronauts, the movie he is executive producing with Hasbro. The property is based on an 80s toy line about heroes in a microverse. The writers tapped for the project are Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese who wrote Zombieland and next year's G.I. Joe 2.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Mission: Impossible 4 With IMAX Footage

A new press release reveals that Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol will have about 30 minutes of footage shot specifically with IMAX cameras. The result will be the effect used in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen where the screen will expand to fill the entire IMAX screen to display the footage in real IMAX. Revenge was the last film to use real IMAX cameras to film scenes as all "IMAX Experience" movies since then were really the standard films just made bigger. Press release below. The IMAX film is getting an early release of December 16th, 2011.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

New Mission Impossible IV IMAX Poster

A new poster has been released for the JJ Abrams produced Mission Impossible - Ghost Protocol. The IMAX poster features Tom Cruise hanging off the side of the Burj Khalifa skyscraper as seen in the trails. The movie is set for "limited" release on December 16th with widespread release on December 21st.

Monday, October 3, 2011

JJ Abrams Prepping Adventure Movie

Deadline is reporting that JJ Abrams has sold a mystery adventure project to Paramount. The untitled project is written by Bill Ray (A Captain's Duty, Pan). No details on release date, cast or anything else. All this means is Paramout is interested in the movie but probably months away before the greenlight that provides the funding to move to the pre-production phase.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Mission: Impossible 4 Release Date Change

The release date for Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol has changed from Wednesday, December 21st to Friday, December 16th. The change is being called a "preview" in select theaters but the number of theatres was not provided. Considering the release date of Friday, I doubt anyone will have a problem seeing the film. The move seems to be a response to a crowded Christmas slate that includes The Girl with the Golden Tattoo and Steven Spielberg's War Horse.

Monday, September 26, 2011

J.J. Producing TV Adventure Series for NBC

It seems that J.J. Abrams just can't get enough of producing as he has signed on for yet another TV series (joining Fringe, Person of Interest and Alcatraz). The show, called Revolution, is a "one-hour NBC drama described as "an epic adventure thiller" according to Deadline. The show was created by Eric Kripke (Supernatural) who also is working on a Deadman series based on the DC comics ghost character. No idea if this means the show is being prepped as a possible mid-season replacement or just early groundwork for the 2012-2013 season.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Super 8 Home Video Details

The details for the home video release of Super 8 on DVD and Blu-ray have been revealed via a press release. The movie is set for a November 22, 2011 release with a Combo Pack of Blu-ray, DVD, Digital Copy. There will probably also be seperate copies of Blu-ray and DVD discs. As for the special features, there will be commentaries, 9 behind the scenes videos and deleted scenes. Full details below. Hopefully this isn't the final cover as the large yellow box with quotes is truly ugly.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Abrams Commits to Directing Star Trek 2 (Updated)

Vulture is reporting that J.J. Abrams has decided to direct Star Trek 2. Their sources indicate that pre-production has started and the script is expected by the end of the month. Star Trek 2's extended delay due to various film projects from Abrams (Super 8), Roberto Orci (Cowboys vs. Aliens) and Alex Kurtzman (Welcome to People) is the primary reasons why the film was forced to abandon its intended June 2012 release date. A new date has not been scheduled but I would not be surprised if it’s not bumped to May 2013 even though I think Thanksgiving 2012 is a better release time. Keep in mind that Abrams choosing the direct the film and Paramount agreeing to meet his price are two separate things but I would be surprised if things don't get worked out after the studio delayed the film in hopes of getting him back as director. (via TrekMovie)

Update: Entertainment Weekly has independently confirmed Vulture's story saying "EW has confirmed that the insatiable media multi-hyphenate has signed on to direct the sequel to his 2009 hit Star Trek."

Thursday, August 4, 2011

JJ Abrams Briefly Talks IM4

While promoting the upcoming CBS TV series Person of Interest, show executive producer JJ Abrams briefly discussed Star Trek (delayed, not signed on as directory) and Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol with Collider.
As producer, what are your thoughts on Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol and Brad Bird as the director? Is it the best one in the series?
ABRAMS: I think it’s the best one of the series. I do. First of all, you’ve never seen a live action Brad Bird movie, and yet when you watch it, you go, “This is a Brad Bird movie.” You realize you’ve been watching Brad Bird films that just happen to be animated. It’s really fun. It’s got a fun intensity to it, and that’s Brad. It’s the biggest one, by far, in terms of the stuff that happens in it. Also, there are other things like a portion of it was shot in IMAX and there’s a sequence on the tallest building in the world, the Burj in Dubai, where Tom Cruise did five days worth of wire work outside the building that is so insane, you cannot believe the insurance company let him do it. When you see it on IMAX, it’s terrifying. It’s crazy, what he did. It really is unbelievable. It’s weird to be in meetings with him and think, “That dude was running down the outside of the building!” I’m talking to him, he’s in my office, and he did that. It’s weird. It’s like talking to Buzz Aldrin. You’re like, “That dude was on the moon!”

You could have been the guy who killed Tom Cruise.
ABRAMS: Well, you’re always afraid of that ‘cause Tom wants to do every stunt. But then, when he does it, you realize he can.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Mission: Impossible 4 Bumped Back

Deadline reports that Paramount has bumped the release of the JJ Abrams' produced Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol back five days from December 16th to December 21, 2011. The change does nothing the lesson the competition in the Christmas two week period. Instead of competing directly against Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, it will now have to deal with that movie's second week and the release of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Other movies are also getting release then but these three are the big ones.

Monday, July 25, 2011

SDCC Alcatraz Panel Summary

A panel was held at the San Diego Comic-Con to introduce fans to Alcatraz, the new show for Fox coming next January that is executive produced by JJ Abrams. The panel revealed a little bit more about the show which involves 256 inmates of 1963 Alcatraz suddenly arriving in the present. Below is the summary of the panel from Collider.
“Certainly there’s no better show” than “Lost,” Sarnoff said after screening the “Alcatraz” pilot episode Saturday evening in Ballroom 20. But “we’re our own show. We want to do our own thing…. We’re thrilled to be doing something else that will hopefully be somewhere near as entertaining.”

Fringe's Peter Bishop "Audition" Tape

As part of the just concluded San Diego Comic-Con, the Fringe panel showed a tongue-in-cheek video with many familiar faces from the world of JJ Abrams auditioning for the role of Peter Bishop. In what could be a tease image for the upcoming season Joshua Jackson appears at the end looking a whole lot like a Watcher.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Person of Interest Promo

Below is the promo for JJ Abrams next series called Person of Interest. In addition IO9 has posted a mini review of the pilot episode that you can find here. Overall the sci-fi website was pleased with the premise of the team of Michael Emerson (Lost) and Jim Caviezel (Watchmen) stopping crimes before they happen. The series premieres this Fall on CBS.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

A Conversation with Abrams and Giacchino Video

Below is a 90 minute video with director/producer/writer J.J. Abrams and composer Michael Giacchino that was recorded on June 12th at the Hammer Museum at UCLA. The two have been working together for a while on with Giacchino composing Alias, Star Trek, Mission: Impossible, Lost and more for JJ Abrams. Full description and video below. (via TrekMovie)
J.J. Abrams is the Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning co-creator of the television series Lost. The producer, screenwriter, director, and composer is also creator of the TV series Alias, co-creator of Felicity and Fringe, and director of several films, including Mission: Impossible III (2006) and Star Trek (2009). Michael Giacchino is the composer of scores for the films Up, Ratatouille, and the television series Lost, among many others. He has received numerous awards for his work, including an Emmy, multiple Grammys, and an Academy Award. (Run Time 1 hour, 26 min.)

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol Trailer

The first trailer for the J.J. Abrams executive produced film Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol was released with Transformers: Dark of the Moon and online. It continues the story of Ethan Hunt and is IMF crew.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

JJ Abrams on Daily Show and Jimmy Kimmel for Super 8

At this point there isn't really anything new to be said about Super 8 but if interested below are embeds J.J. Abrams on the Daily Show June 14th and Jimmy Kimmel Live. If you are interested in his NPR and MTV interviews hed over to TrekMovie.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Bruce Greenwood Is The Super 8 Monster

In an interview with the Montreal Gazette, Bruce Greenwood (Star Trek) revealed that he was Cooper in Super 8. Cooper is the name J.J. Abrams gave to the alien creature in the film. Greenwood wasn't actually in the film but his motion capture work (like was done for Gollum in the Lord of the Rings movies) was used for the creature.
“It’s not your typical acting exercise at all, because you’re really the only person in this room with all these cameras in it. It was a very weird thing to offer up all this big emotion while ...the rest of the people in the room are picking away at the craft services table. And you never really how it will turn out because it’s all left in the hands of the artists and animators who are putting your work together."
So far Super 8 is doing pretty good at the box office with an opening weekend of $35.5 million especially considering the movie was made for less than $100 million (cheap for a summer movie). It will likely do just fine profit wise but not break any records. Like many summer movies nowadays, its success (or failure) will not be determined until the international sales add to the total since more and more the non-US audiences are accounting for the greater percentage of a movies' sales. (via TrekMovie)

Friday, June 10, 2011

Abrams Interview on Super 8 and Other Projects

In an interview with Collider, J.J. Abrams discusses many of the projects he is currently working on. He is about the wrap up promoting his latest movie Super 8, move into possibly directing Star Trek and executive produce new shows Alcatraz and Person of Interest. In the interview he discusses each of these projects. Below are a few highlights about each with the full interview here.

Super 8
Was that part of the connection you had with Steven Spielberg, who also began by making 8mm movies?
ABRAMS: When I had this thought to go back and do a movie about that period of time, the first thing I did was call him because I knew that he had made movies as well, at that time. Luckily, he said yes.
A lot of your projects have had a monster element or plot to them, and you said you experimented with monster movies when you were a kid. What do you like about the monster factor, and tweaking it for a modern audience?
ABRAMS: It depends on what it is. There are situations where it’s great for a scene or sequence, but not the whole movie. And then, there are times when it’s a fun idea and that’s the premise. In this case, the idea of a creature was cool for me, but just because the idea was that it would be a way to externalize and make physical this thing that this kid was going through internally – the idea of the loss of his mother. This creature represented the thing that was the most frightening to him, which was the idea of never getting past the loss of this person to him. To me, I’m more interested in the idea of why there’s something there. What does it represent? What does it mean for a character?

Super 8 Two Minute Featurette

Apple Trailers has added a 2 minute featurette that shows a little behind the scenes with a mix of interviews with J.J. Abrams, Steven Spielberg and the cast of Super 8 as they give mini sales pitches on why you should see Super 8. Sadly it looks like I will not get a chance to see it this weekend so be sure to post what you thought of the movie in the comments. Thanks to Feris Othman for the link.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Super 8 Viral Video Prequel

A few months ago pieces of Super 8 was distributed to media sites that where seconds of a larger film. The pieces were occasionally made available online but the full video was never available. Until now. Below is the complete viral video that provides a brief glimpse at the monster as a kind of prequel to the movie.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Super 8 Poster, 3 Clips and Sneak Preview

Super 8 are just days away from release and with it a new poster, movie clips and a twitter related opportunity to see the movie a day early. The poster is fan made to invoke the look of classic posters created by Drew Struzan for Indiana Jones, Back to the Future and other movies but looks so darn good that it should be official.

Paramount is offering a sneak preview of the movie on tomorrow June 9th through 300 or so theaters (and IMAX locations). They are using twitter to promote this with the hashtag #Super8Secret. If go to here, you can find out a theatre near you that will be showing the movie on Thursday, June 9th. As part of this sneak preview promotion, participating theaters are offering free popcorn with concession purchase. With the preview twitter promotion is a six minute video from the movie that includes part of the train crash. There are also two shorter clips below.

Train Crash

Monday, June 6, 2011

Abrams Talks Super 8 Monster, Kids

In an interview with io9, the director J.J. Abrams discusses the Super 8 monster, working with kids and more. Below are a full segments, the full interview can be found here.
The monster is a tricky thing from the story [perspective] to make work. The reason it's in the movie is that it's a physical manifestation of the struggle going on inside this boy who has lost his mother. The idea of confronting this thing, the inevitability of having to confront this thing, really maps the inevitability of having to deal with that loss and figure out a way to get past it. And so having to see and confront this thing that's the scariest thing in the world, by definition, this creature has to be terrible.

Super 8 JJ Abrams Video Interview

Collider has posted a video inteview with JJ Abrams as he discussed Super 8. A few highlights is talking about effort put into keeping things secret, the viral marketing campaign, the use of the Amblin logo that often preceeded some of Steven Spielberg's greatest films, and that there is an Easter Egg involving Leonard Nimoy.

MTV Movie Awards Super 8 TV Spot

A new TV spot aired as part of the preview for the MTV Movie Awards 2011. The spot includes a lot of new footage with an emphasis on the action. Super 8 hits theatres this Friday. In addition a new Harry Potter trailer was revealed. Thanks to Feris Othman for the link.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Super 8 Cast Interviews

Shock Till You Drop has posted a nearly 10 minute interview with the cast of Super 8. It is an edited piece from 3 seperate interview segments Kyle Chandler, Elle Fanning, and a group interview with the remaining group of child actors. In a weird way it is interesting to watch because Kyle is the most experienced actor of the group so was in full sales mode, Elle is in charm mode and the group just seemed to be having fun and enjoying the experience. Thanks to Feris Othman for the link.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Story Behind Super 8

Hero Complex has written a long article that gets into the origins of Steven Spielberg and JJ Abrams and them coming together to work on Super 8. It turns out this ideas for this movie started back in their childhood. The full article is here but below are segments of interest.
The finished film is, in a way, three stories projected on one screen — the history of Spielberg, the childhood of Abrams and of the characters from the script. The huge train crash in the film, for instance, takes on different shadings when you find out that the first movie Spielberg remembers watching in a theater was Cecil B. DeMille’s “The Greatest Show on Earth,” which featured a spectacular collision of trains. It was later that the youngster carefully set up his Lionel train set so he could film his own wreck. In a moment of epiphany, the boy realized that with three cuts (train going left to right; train going right to left; trains crashing) he was telling a story with moving pictures.

“It was more than seeing someone’s movie and saying, ‘You know, I bet I’d get along with him.’ It was more than seeing a painting and thinking, ‘I bet I know what matters to that artist.’ This was an oddly personal thing never intended for viewing at least not in the context I was seeing it in. I always kept that in my heart and head.”

New TV Spot, Viral Comic

Super 8 is just a touch over a week away from release and the TV spots keep coming. Below is another one to enjoy as they start to incorporate some of the early very positive reviews the movie has received. In addition, if you hit your local comic book store and read current "Flashpoint" story arc, you will find a comic short story that explains some of the back-story behind the discovery of the alien in the film. Turns out it began with Sputnik. Of note is the use of a classic 1960's look and DC logo. Thanks to Feris Othman for the links.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Five Clips from Super 8

Thanks to Coming Soon, below are five clips that show some of the scenes before and during the train crash that has been teased in the Super 8 trailers and TV spots. Thanks to Feris Othman for the link.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

New Super 8 TV Spot

A new Super 8 TV Spot has been leaked online, not sure when it will start being aired on TV. This one is called "Secret 30." (via Super8News)

Update: Not sure how but managed to post the wrong video that has now been corrected. Thanks to Feris for pointing out the error.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Super 8: Abrams and Spielberg Video Interview

As part of the promotion for Super 8, J.J. Abrams and Steven Spielberg sat down for a 13 minute video interview (below) with Empire. Among the highlights of the interview:

- The film was a result of the pair’s love of 8mm film as children and conceived as children accidently shooting a big secret.
- Was going to be a heist movie but Abrams combined it with his monster movie idea.
- Set movie in 70s because amateur filmmaking was more difficult and required great deal more effort. Also Abrams knew that children wanting to be filmmakers than tended to be outcasts versus today.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Japanese Super 8 Poster & New Clip

First Showing brings us the first look at the Japan poster for Super 8 that is very cool looking and different from what normally see in posters with all the close-up head shots and the like. These are the kind of posters I hope Hollywood PR machines produce more often. In addition, here is another new TV spot for the movie. Thanks to Feris Othman for the links.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Person of Interest Preview

J.J. Abrams executive produced show Person of Interest has joined the CBS schedule for the Fall 2011-2012 TV season. The just announced schedule puts it on Thursday at 9PM replacing the long time slot of CSI which moved to Wednesday. The show stars Michael Emerson, James Caviezel, Taraji P. Henson, Kevin Chapman. Below is a preview of the season with cast interviews.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Super 8 Clips and TV Spots

Below are 2 new clips and 1 TV spot for Super 8 which will hit theatres in a few weeks on June 8th. This is in addition to the ones released the other day. (via SciFi Mafia)

Clip #1

Alcatraz Teaser Trailer

J.J. Abrams' next television show was recently picked up as a mid-season replace by Fox for the 2011-2012 season. The show is executive produced by Abrams and Elizabeth Sarnoff. The current cast is Sarah Jones, Jeffrey Pierce, Robert Forster, Sam Neill, Jorge Garcia, Jonny Coyne, and Jason Butler Harner. Below is a teaser trailer and after that a description of the show from

Friday, May 13, 2011

Abrams' Person of Interest Picked Up

J.J. Abrams is on a small hot streak has he has another show make it to 2011-2012 television season. The show "Person of Interest" has been picked up by CBS joining his Alcatraz from Fox. Person "centers on an ex-CIA agent, presumed dead, who teams up with a mysterious billionaire to prevent violent crimes in NYC. It stars Michael Emerson and James Caviezel."

Three New Super 8 TV Spots

The release of Super 8 is just three weeks away and that means the arrival of many TV spots. Three new ones were release yesterday and as usual for a JJ Abrams production, they are light on revealing anything about the story. Thanks to Feris Othman for link. Note the third video auto-starts.

"It Arrives" (via Yahoo! Movies)

"Jersey" (via /Film)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

J.J. Abrams' Alcatraz Goes To Series

I lost track of how many television shows that J.J. Abrams' and his Bad Robots production was shooting to hit the fall schedule. So far he is 1 for 1 with Alcatraz getting a order from Fox for the 2011-2012 televison season. The show is one of four new shows already getting orders before the upfronts start. Few details are known about the show and likely more changes will be made between the pilot episode and the what occurs now that the show has been picked up. Exactly how many episodes have not been revealed but I imagine it is in the norma l3 range with potential for more if ratings go well. Also were on the schedule it will go will be released at Fox's upfronts which I think take place next week.

Sadly this and other orders a favorite of mine, Human Target, is official cancelled. Joining it are three shows I have been enjoying - The Chicago Code, Lie To Me and Breaking In which were both very well done and could have become something great if given the opportunity.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Super 8 iPhone App

As part of the marketing for Super 8, a new app has been released for the iPhone 4.0. The app adds effects and filters to video recordings so can mimic the look and feel of a Super 8 recording. Like the best marketing campaigns this is free. Click here to learn more or just download it.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Abrams About Super 8 Kids

In an interview with MTV, JJ Abrams briefly discussed casting and kids for his film Super 8 that is coming in June.
MTV News: Obviously the kids are key to this one, and we think about Spielberg working with kids. Were you naturally always comfortable working with kids. Did you rely on Steven in terms of working with younger actors?
Abrams: I don't think working with actors, young or old, is ever very easy or a given. Everyone's different. There are some actors with whom I feel I have this crazy psychic connection and I don't feel like I have to say anything and they get what it is. When you're casting, the most important thing is casting people who don't necessarily have to be told what to do at every turn but will inspire you by coming up with things you never would have thought of. Working with kids is something I had done only sparingly. In "Star Trek," there was a young Kirk and a young Spock. But never really like this, and frankly I was terrified. I was dealing with two main actors who had never been cast before and never been on a set before. They didn't know the most fundamental things about how a crew works. Everything was an alien experience for them. The fun of working with them, partly, is they weren't professional kids. And then there was Elle Fanning, who's from another planet herself. There's a kind of innate brilliance and sophistication, the likes of which I've never seen in an actor, especially an actor who when I worked with her was 12.

MTV News: Do you test screen something like this for audiences?
Abrams: On the films that I've directed, including this one, I've done friends and family screenings, where we'll bring people in who are either friends with or part of the family of people working on the movie or know people working on the movie, just so we know they won't go out and tweet or post or blog. Hopefully people who can be brutally honest about what they're seeing. You don't want populate it with people who are on the movie's payroll.

MTV News: Has anyone given you one note in particular that has really helped you?
Abrams: Oh my god! I could not be more grateful and reliant on those notes. Everything from things they didn't understand or didn't ring true to sequences that felt confusing or too slow. You do the first cut and you go, "There's no way we can lose any more time." And then you show it to people and you realize you were wrong about a number of things. This is just a process you go through all the time. You go, "I've been through this before, next time I'll just know." Then you do it again and you get a response where you realize all your work's ahead of you. It's a wonderful process to show the movie and then discuss it.

Friday, April 22, 2011

"7 Films That Shaped Super 8"

JJ Abrams, director and writer of Super 8, discusses with Hero Complex the 7 films that influenced the film. The list is Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Jaws, The Thing, Alien, Slumber Party Massacre, Scanners, and ET. To find out example why, click here.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Fringe Duo Partners with Abrams

It seems that JJ Abrams just cannot find too many shows and movies to produce as Deadline reports he might have found another project. Fringe co-producers Monica Breen and Alison Schapker have re-upped with Abrams' Bad Robot to develop another TV series and write a movie.
I've learned they've been hired to do a rewrite on one of J.J.'s top-secret projects at Paramount. With a working title of Zanbato, the script involves Japanese history and robotics: "swashbuckling robots with swords" is how one insider describes it to me. (That's the project which Francis Lawrence is no longer attached to direct.) The female writing team will continue to develop original material with J.J. and Bad Robot. Their "heightened reality" crime drama Pulp was written under their deal last year, and now it may turn into a graphic novel or potential comic book series for Warner's DC Comics.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Super 8 Interactive Teaser

Portal 2 video game contains an interesting extra feature that allows "players" to briefly interact inside the train car that is seen crashing in the trailers up to the point that the creature escape. The video below shows off this teaser but from what I can tell no real secrets are revealed. It is mostly just an interesting way to promote a movie. Knowing Abrams, the codes on the documents probably work in whatever online viral-marketing campaign that goes with the movie but so far I have not found any details.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

JJ Abrams Signs Novel Deal

JJ Abrams is adding yet another hat to his long list of job titles. Now he can add published novelist to the list. It was announced that the writer/director/producer etc has signed a deal with publisher Little, Brown and Co. to write a thriller novel. The book will be written with Doug Dorst. The target release date is fall of 2012.

It sounds like the case with a lot of writers nowadays where one comes up with a story idea and outline than another writer steps in and fills out the details with a little back and forth to tweak it. It is almost ghost writing like used by the rich and famous for their books but with the writer actually getting credit for their efforts. Examples of this include John Patterson and Tom Clancy where they get the writer credit but it doesn't necessarily mean they did all the heavy lifting. Since this is collaboration, it is unlikely to interfere with any of his existing projects and not factor in decision to direct Star Trek 2.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

New Super 8 TV Spot

A new TV spot for Super 8 apparently aired sometime this weekend. About a minute long, it shows a lot more of the children that lead the cast of this film and includes a lot of new scenes not seen in previous trailers. Thanks to Super8News for the heads-up.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Super 8 Mystery Film

JJ Abrams has shown with pretty much all his films that he likes to use the internet in some form or fashion to tease his films and introduce a little back-story. Super 8 is no different has there have been a few sites that might be related to the movie but not confirmed. However, an update to the official website leaves no doubt and was supported by a package that was sent to Entertainment Weekly.
...a mysterious package arrived at EW HQ containing a small, slightly-weathered, so-very-seventies orange box of Kodak Kodachrome 40 super 8 film. Outside the box: An expiration date of “08/1988″ and the numbers “761 7820″. Inside the box: A white plastic cartridge, holding a short reel of film offering about 30 frames of footage – a literal little tease of film. Holding the film strip up to our window, we can see a presidential-looking dude sitting at a desk with a U.S. flag behind him and talks directly to camera. The box also contained an instruction to send an email with a separate code to an address at After doing so, we headed over to the website, clicked on the feature labeled “Editing Room,” and there was our strip of film, dangling from a dark room hook.
If you go to the Editing Room, there are options to scroll through the available strips of film (not really a whole lot) but if you click the "Open/Close" toggle on the right hand side and choose "Play" you can view what little there is to see. From what little is available (only 5 strips out of 100) it seems to be a video brief of some science experiment for the US government but the specific details, what it is for, did it end well or not and so forth are part of what isn't available. No idea what how more will get added but something to check out now and then.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Super 8, Mission Impossible Footage Previewed

Paramount Pictures held a sneak peak of their summer 2011 for the press yesterday that included a look at 20 minutes of JJ Abram's directed film Super 8 and Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol that he is executive producing. While incomplete, the report indicates two films that should be very entertaining. As far as spoilers go, it seems I:M might have at least a portion of the film take place between the first and second films while Abrams continues to keep his secrets with Super 8 but the shown scene reinforces his desire to keep things practical as much as possible rather then relying on CGI. Below are descriptions of the shown scenes from Collider.

Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol
Then we got a quick-cut barrage of footage from Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, which features Tom Cruise back as Ethan Hunt, with hair length somewhere between movies one and two (yes, that’s important). The montage flew by at lightning speed, but we did catch plenty of glimpses of Cruise jumping off moving cars, unleashing weaponry fire and doing his spy thing. We also saw Simon Pegg dressed in a Soviet-like outfit, Paula Patton looking stunning while stepping out of a car , Josh Holloway making his usual angry face and Jeremy Renner in full out action mode. In fact, Renner is eerily reminiscent of original M:I Tom Cruise — obviously ready to take over the mantle.

The audience let out a welcome gasp when the footage went full-on IMAX scope a la Dark Knight for the much talked about stunt in which Cruise actually dangled from the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa in Duabi. The scene features Renner and Patton egging Cruise on as he attempts to swing into a window…which might be a little bit out of his reach. Fun stuff.
Super 8
Before the lights dimmed and the footage played, Abrams warned us that these were completely unfinished scenes. Incomplete SFX, incomplete sound, incomplete color. This was rough, and frankly, he didn’t want to show us. He also didn’t want to let the cat out of the bag on any spoilers, so for the sake of the mystery (because it’s more fun that way), you won’t find anything too shocking here.

Abrams played two scenes for us: a lengthier version of the train wreck scene featured in the trailer and a brief scene at a gas station post-train wreck. In the trailer we see the boys setting up camera before everything derails and that’s what plays out at length in the opening. The vibe is very Goonies in all the right ways — these kids Abrams have found are pitch perfect. They talk like 14-year-olds, they act like 14-year-olds. They’re dynamic is fun loving and they’re having a ball making this zombie movie.

That is, until a truck zips past them, pulls on to the train tracks and takes the locomotive off the tracks. The kids run for cover (as seen in the trailer) and the scene in full is miraculous. You don’t get a sense from the trailer, but the wreck scene is almost entirely practical. At one point a train car barrels through the station and the entire building explodes, wooden panels, metal beams, debris and all. Burning train parts fly through the air as the kids run through the warzone. The main character Joe, a loner kid who recently lost his Mom in a mill accident, witnesses something banging around in one of the cars, but loses focus when his friends call for him. Saying too much would spoil, but Joe and his friends do encounter the man who deliberately drove head on into the train — a man that they know, but we don’t. Creepy!

The shorter scene was a glimpse at an attack on the gas station by the “thing.” A cop and a station attendee mill about in the middle of the night only to cross paths with “it,” which we know from the trailers has some serious powers. In the trailer, we see the attendant being pulled across the floor of the convenience store. From the footage, we just know that he takes quite a walloping before then. Even in this scene, Abrams isn’t giving anything up — who or what was trapped in that train is very much a mystery. To the viral campaign!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Cloverfield 2 Still Possible

Matt Reeves, director of Cloverfield, has indicated that a sequel could still occur to Total Film. The movie, executive produced by JJ Abrams, was a monster movie that didn't really explain a darn thing about the monster. With JJ Abrams multiple TV series (5 I believe), Super 8, possibly Star Trek 2 and more I seriousily doubt there will be any movement on Cloverfield 2 until mid-2012.
"At the moment we are talking about the story quite a lot. Drew Goddard, who wrote the original, is going to pen the sequel and JJ Abrams is very much involved.

"However, the three of us have been so busy that getting the right idea together has been taking a long time."

But will the sequel shoot in real-time again? "You see, that's a difficult part: we want it to be shot like the first but how can you continue that idea successfully for a second time?

"We have a lot of affection for the original and the sequel can't just be the same thing. But that is tricky when you need to have a monster destroying stuff once again."

Friday, March 11, 2011

First Official Super 8 Poster

With a new trailer, comes the first official poster for the movie. Hit Apple Trailers for the full size poster and the horizontal look (as site background) of the image.

Super 8 Theatrical Trailer

The first theatrical trailer for Super 8 has finally been released. Below is the trailer which is also attached to Battle: Los Angeles. The movie, written and directed by JJ Abrams will be released in theaters on June 10th. Click here if interested in screenshots from the trailer. Update: Changed embed to 1080p HD one. Can also view at Apple Trailers.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Super 8 Trailer Rumor

/Film is reporting that a new trailer for Super 8 is attached to Battle: Los Angeles which hit theatres Friday. If true, then it will likely hit the web shortly afterwards since theatres don't always follow studio instructions on what trailers to play with movies. The article also mentions a synopsis but that is old news from the Super Bowl TV spot which was probably derived from the longer theatrical trailer.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Update on Super 8 Trailer

While at the Vanity Fair part after the Oscars, JJ Abrams provided an update on the next trailer for Super 8 to MTV News.
"There will be a trailer out pretty soon," Abrams promised, quickly adding that he doesn't "know anything" when it comes to whether or not the trailer would reveal what exactly is going on with Kyle Chandler, Elle Fanning, and some other concerned-looking citizens.

Still, Abrams -- who revealed last month that the movie is equal parts science fiction, love story, comedy and special-effects spectacle -- left us with some good news about the upcoming trailer: "You'll get more of a flavor of what you're in for this spring."

Friday, February 25, 2011

Leonard Nimoy Returns to Fringe Again

Despite repeated assertions that he is retiring, Leonard Nimoy just can't quit the acting biz. Today the Star Trek and Fringe actors tweeted "Coming to Fringe. William's bell rings soon. LLAP". The LLAP is shorthand for Live Long and Prosper. Since Fringe is on the fence for being renewed for a third season, I assume he is returning to the role of William Bell for the season finale, much like he did for last year's finale.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Emerson Joins Person of Interest

JJ Abrams joins forces with a Lost cast member has Michael Emerson joins the cast of Person of Interest. The CBS show is currently casting for the pilot episode that will decide if the show will join the Fall schedule as a new TV series. From TVLine:
The project, directed by Heroes‘ David Semel, is a crime drama centered on an ex-CIA agent, presumed dead, who teams up with a mysterious billionaire (Emerson) to prevent violent crimes in New York City.

An Emmy winner during his run on Lost, Emerson originally reunited with Abrams for a different project this development season: the action drama Odd Jobs, which was to star Emerson and fellow Lost alum Terry O’Quinn, with Abrams producing and Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec writing. That project landed at NBC in September, but was recently pushed to a later development timetable.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

CBS Orders Person of Interest Pilot

CBS has ordered the pilot episode of "Person of Interest" one of many television projects that JJ Abrams has been shopping to networks for next season as an executive producer. If the pilot grabs the interest of CBS executives, it could lead to a season order for Fall 2011 season. From Deadline:
The project, from Warner Bros. TV and Abrams' Bad Robot, is a crime drama centered on a CIA agent, presumed dead, who is recruited by a reclusive billionaire to wage war against violent criminals in New York City. Nolan, who shared a writing Oscar nomination with his brother Christopher for Memento, is executive producing with Abrams and Burk. This marks the TV debut for Nolan. Person of Interest is the second pilot order for Bad Robot this year, following the early pickup for Alcatraz at Fox.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Super 8 Superbowl Trailer, Movie Description, Abrams Interview

Today is a big day for the promotion of JJ Abrams directed movie Super 8. Not only do we have a new trailer thanks to the Superbowl ad but also an actual description of the movie as a result of an interview JJ Abrams had with Hero Complex.

Trailer links: YouTube (HD) | Apple Trailers

Movie Description:
“Super 8″ takes its name from the Eastman Kodak film format that became a sensation with amateur movie-makers in the late 1960s and represented a rite of passage for several generations of aspiring directors, among them Spielberg and Abrams. The Paramount Pictures release is set in Ohio in 1979 and introduces a troupe of six youngsters who are using a Super 8 camera to make their own zombie movie. One fateful night, their project takes them to a lonely stretch of rural railroad tracks and, as the camera rolls, calamity strikes — a truck collides with an oncoming locomotive and a hellacious derailment fills the night with screaming metal and raining fire. Then something emerges from the wreckage, something decidedly inhuman.

Here are highlights of the Hero Complex interview:

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Cloverfield 2 Years Away

In an interview with MovieWeb, director Matt Reeves tells the site that a sequel to Cloverfield is probably years away.
"Cloverfield 2 will most likely not be the next movie because that's still in the really nascent stages. We haven't really had time to get together and talk about what that would be. That journey will probably be a bit longer, when we find that idea that we really get excited about. We're still hatching the story. It has yet to be hatched. It was funny. Someone said to me the other day, 'Yeah, we hear you're going to get the band back together.' I said, 'Yeah, but at this stage, we're just talking about getting the band back together. We actually haven't gotten the band back together.'

I really want to continue to press and try to make this smaller project that I've been trying to make since before Cloverfield. It's a project called The Invisible Woman. It's sort of a character thriller. It's the anatomy of this woman's desperation. It's the same sort of storytelling that I did in Let Me In. It's an intimate character story, so I'm excited to do that to. Probably what I would do is find the next project and find a way to marry that schedule to the bigger project. So, hopefully, we could do two in a row and then maybe Cloverfield 2."
Cloverfield was really a self contained movie that doesn't necessarily require a sequel unless the goal is to explain the creature which is 50/50 if Abrams is involved. The more time that passes, the less likely a sequel will be made. I would be really shocked if a sequel is ever made as I get the feeling that creatively Reeves, Abrams and the others are simply not interested and all have moved on in such a way that financially they don't have too make a sequel even if the studio wants it.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Super 8 Super Bowl Trailer Set

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Super 8 will have a TV trailer that will air during the Super Bowl XLV on February 6th. The movie will join trailers from Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Thor, Captain American, Pirates of the Caribbean, Cowboys & Aliens and others. Rates for this year's Super Bowl ads are around $3 million per 30-second spot.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Super 8 Trailer Coming March 25th?

A list of trailer release dates through May on suggests that the first theatrical trailer (vs. the previous teaser trailer) will be released on March 25th, with Sucker Punch. This date falls within the month that JJ Abrams said he expected the trailer to be out so while unconfirmed it does seem very plausible. The list as a whole is realistic in its pairing.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

JJ Abrams on Future Projects

In an interview with Collider, JJ Abrams spoke a little bit about the many projects he has in the pipeline. To talks briefly about the move of Fringe to Fridays (not exactly happy about it), the cancellation of Undercovers (audiences felt a bit lacking"), Alcatraz (shooting starts on Jan 19th), Super 8 (trailer in March), and directing Star Trek 2 (waiting on the script to decide). The full interview is here, below are snippets.
How do you feel about the move to Friday nights for Fringe?
ABRAMS: Oh, I’m horrified beyond belief, but as a fan of the genre and the show, I’m hoping that fans will tune in. I certainly can promise that it will be worth their while. The episodes that are coming up are spectacular. I guess you can just be hopeful and say that, if the work is good enough, it will find the audience. I think they’re doing better work now, even in the second half of Season 3, than they’ve ever done on the series. I’m just crossing my fingers that fans of the show, show up.

Do you have anything else in development for network television right now?
ABRAMS: We do. We have a few projects. We have a show for Fox called Alcatraz, that starts shooting on the 19th, which I could not be more excited about. And, we have a show for CBS called Person of Interest, that Jonah Nolan wrote. We have Odd Jobs for NBC. And we have a new script called Pulp, that was written by Alison Schapker and Monica Breen. That’s a spectacular script. We’re about to go out with that.

What is the status of Odd Jobs, with Terry O’Quinn and Michael Emerson? Where is that, in the process?
ABRAMS: A script is being written right now. The intent would be to make the pilot for this season.

Do you have a date by which you have to decide whether you’re going to direct Star Trek 2?
ABRAMS: That’s a good question. I probably do. I don’t know. There’s a script that should be coming in, hopefully by the time there’s a trailer for Super 8, and then we’ll know.

What’s the biggest proponent of that decision for you?ABRAMS: I guess the idea of not wanting to choose to direct a film, for which I’ve not read a script. It’s a tough decision to make without seeing any pages. That’s not to say that I don’t have all the faith in the world in the spectacular writers. Damon Lindelof, Bob Orci and Alex Kurtzman are awesome. My hope is that they’ll write the script, it will be great and we can make a fun, exciting sequel to Star Trek.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

M:I4, Super 8 Hitting IMAX Theaters

JJ Abrams' Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol and Super 8 will be released in IMAX theatres when the movies officially debut later this year. The films are part of a 4 picture agreement that Paramount Pictures announced today. From the Hollywood Reporter:
Imax Corp. has booked four upcoming Paramount tentpole pics for its 2011 slate. The pact with Paramount Pictures will see Toronto-based Imax screen super-sized versions of Super 8, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol and The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn.

Each movie will bow worldwide on Imax screens day-and-date with its traditional 35mm release. Super 8 will be released on June 10, 2011, with Transformers: Dark of the Moon bowing on July 1, 2011. Paramount will also release Mission: Impossible -- Ghost Protocol on Dec. 16, 2011, while The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn will debut on Dec. 28, 2011 in the U.S. market.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Super 8 Will Not Be Renamed

Paramount Pictures has denied the recent report that the international title of Super 8 may have changed to Darlings. From Cinema Blend:
We checked in with the folks at Paramount who tell us that not only will Super 8 not be retitled in the United States, it’ll still go by Super 8 in Brazil as well. Apparently the title Darlings was something they only used for security purposes, and they’re still calling it what they’ve always called it.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Abrams Developing Pulp TV Series

JJ Abrams may have struck out with Undercovers (and possibly Fringe if the Friday "death slot" lives up to its name) but that isn't stopping him from adding more TV shows to his Bad Robot production slate.

The latest addition is "Pulp", "an hour-long crime drama set in a slightly heigtened reality, a-la Pulp Fiction" according to TV Line. Monica Breen and Alison Schapker (Alias, Brothers & Sisters) will be write the pilot script and exec produce the potential series.

The goal seem to have it ready for pilot season later this yearm joining Abrams other TV projects of Odd Jobs (NBC), Alcatraz (Fox) and Person of Interset (CBS). Sounds like this one should go to ABC for the full network set.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Super 8 Renamed Darlings?

It seems that Super 8 is going to experience a name change, at least based on the release of the teaser trailer in Brazil. MovieWeb has posted that trailer and if noticed at the end, where it normally says "Super 8", it instead says "Darlings", and no that is not the Spanish translation of the movie. The website tried to verify the name change with Paramount. It isn't known if this is a worldwide, Brazil only or international title change. My guess is Paramount is assuming that most international audiences will not know what a Super 8 camera and film is and chose a name that might be less confusing. Then again a name of "Darlings" for a film with a trailer of a dramatic train derailment and sudden attack is confusing too.

Monday, January 3, 2011

JJ Abrams' Neighborhood Kindness

An article from gossip blog Crazy Days and Nights, a story was revealed that involved JJ Abrams showing an extra effort for a Los Angeles neighborhood one of his movies was performing pick up shots for. It’s a nice change of pace in a time when most of the stories from Hollywood seem to be mostly about ego and making sure every little act is seen by cameras. While its truth may never be 100% known, it’s still makes for a good story.
Is this the biggest kindness in the history of the world? Nope. Not by a long shot, but it is pretty big to show you what happens when people take time to do the little things. This initialed A++ list producer/writer/director and creator was filming in a local Los Angeles neighborhood recently. It is not a street that usually sees a lot of filming and took place on a quiet street. It was just some pick up shots for a movie, but our producer/director was there to supervise. When the residents discovered who was shooting and for what movie, they of course came out to gawk. Not a problem for our producer who took pictures, signed autographs and even let all the kids come out and listen on headsets and explained each shot in advance. Many of the residents baked cookies or brought out food for the crew and the producer got all their names and addresses and sent a personalized, signed note mentioning each item of food to each person. Definitely a nice touch and left everyone with some great holiday spirit and lots of love for our producer.

J.J. Abrams