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Ken Watanabe, who has been stationed at the HTG armory for the past few years under the pseudonym General Kuribayashi, will be leaving his post to be in the new movie Society of Thieves, for producer Anonemuss of Lightning Films and Lake Hope Features. This role, which marks Watanabe’s first part since 2011’s Split Paths, reunites Watanabe with his Gunz: The Duel co-star Tony Leung Chui Wai. The part is said to be that of Chen Fan, a high ranking member of the gang Andy Lau heads.

“This is a great little action flick that Anonemuss cooked up and I’m very glad to be apart of it,” Watanabe commented at a recent press conference promoting the film. “It has heart, action, drama and all the other right ingredients to make for a film that is truly enjoyable.” This film marks what looks to be a long and prosperous film venture for new producer Anonemuss who, after booking this film, already has several other films lined up including a remake of the Chinese classic A World Without Thieves at 21CC.

“What we have here is someone who is eager to work and somebody who has talent to be nurtured,” said Quantum, CEO and founder of Lake Hope Features. “I’ve worked with a lot of new producers and Anonemuss sticks out as one of the most eager newcomers I’ve seen in a while. I hope he can keep it up.”

Rumor has it that Ken Watanabe will not be replaced at the Armory as new recruits are currently not being looked for at this time. Though, he is apparently circling a part in a new Rogue Net series, which has yet to be officially announced. If that is true, Ken Watanabe could be seeing one of his busiest years in, well, years. Watanabe ended the press conference by stating “Though I will miss being a general for HTG’s fine Town, I’m glad I get to go back doing what I love and that is being in the movies.”

John Woo directs an all star cast that also includes Liam Neeson, Joe Flanigan, Damian Lewis, Rick Yune, and Chloe Moretz.

Society of Thieves opens in theaters this Friday.

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After the success of Even If The World Ends, The Simpsons Presidential Movie and Toy Story: World Tour, unbb24 Productions is producing another film, Being Stan Martin. The movie is a romantic comedy directed by Harold Ramis. It is the story of Stan Martin (played by Jesse Eisenberg), a 20-something nerdy guy, who is in a journey to find the perfect love for a perfect life. The movie is set in New York and Eisenberg’s leading lady will be Mary Elizabeth Winstead. Now, The Hollywood Times had a chance to interview some of the movie’s cast and the producer of the film on their current press tour.

In part one we’ll showcase our talk with the two leads…

Jesse Eisenberg

TIMES: Hello, Jesse. It is nice to meet you. Now, you are known for different roles mostly in drama, comedy and romance. Why did you choose to play this role?

JESSE: The role of Stan Martin is very special for me. Stan and I are very much related in personality. We are both nerds, dorky and pathetic. Now, he knows that now is a perfect time for love… so he finds love. My leading lady in this film is Mary Elizabeth Winstead who plays Wendy, the female protagonist of the film.

TIMES: Do you find the film admirable? Did you take pleasure in filming this movie?

JESSE: Yeah. This is one of the most enjoyable films that I’ve worked on. The set was very nice. The cast were great because there is Steve Martin and Melissa McCarthy. Suck great talents.  Rom-coms are not new to me. I know how I can make this film good. It was fun to work on this one.

TIMES: Are you recommending this film to be watch by everyone?

JESSE: Yes. Of course! This film is for everyone, even rated PG. This film is for the those who are dorks and those pathetic with love. For those who are not in a committed relationship, this film is for you.

Mary Elizabeth Winstead

TIMES: Good afternoon, Mary Elizabeth. Now, let’s talk about your role in this film. How did you get the part?

MARY: My role in this film is Wendy. She is the leading lady opposite Stan. She is a DJ in a radio station and is a dork like Stan. I actually replaced Emma Stone in the role. They already started shooting, and after the casting change, we had to reshoot the first few Wendy scenes.

TIMES: We all know that you worked mostly on horror films. I think that this rom-com is new to you.

MARY: Yeah. I work mostly on horror or suspense films, having been in Third Day and Battle Royal. I just wanted to work on a fun romantic comedy and I loved working on Being Stan Martin.It was great not being covered in fake blood for once. I hope that critics can feel the Eisenberg/Winstead chemistry. It was great working with unbb24 and his awesome crew. unbb24 has a little Toy Story figure that he’ll sometimes sneak into the background of shots. The whole shoot was a lot of fun. Maybe we can even do a sequel down the line?

A big thank you to both Jesse and Mary for fitting us into their very busy schedule. Come back later in the week for part 2 of our Being Stan Martin interview series. The movie hits theaters on August 10th, 2012.

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In three days, Lake Hope Features and debut producer Anonemuss are looking to woo audiences with their action film Society of Thieves. Thanks to the living legend and visionary action director John Woo, they might do just that.

It has been three years to the day of Woo’s last film, the action adaptation Gunz: Lost Salvation, which grossed more than 270 million dollars world wide. Before that it had been a three year break since 2006’s Wireless, which was nominated for two Golden Yodas. Wireless was released hot on the heals of Woo’s two 2005 releases, the video game adaptation of True Crime: Streets of LA and Swaine. Woo has a distinct honor of having worked with five different studios and five different producers on his five releases (counting his new film). Because of this each film has had its own voice and vibe.

John Woo guides a very talented cast that includes Liam Neeson, Andy Lau, Tony Leung Chiu Wi, and Damien Lewis in the top four roles, with Jean Dujardin, Ken Watanabe, Takeshi Kaneshiro, Olivia Williams, and Joe Flanigan in supporting roles.

The film takes place during a “brutal gang war in 19th century Sacramento” where “2 rival gangs, the Axe Gang and the Crocodile Gang, are going after each other after the death of one of the axe gang’s leaders. Its a battle for supremacy.” A Times reporter sat down with writer/producer Anonemuss last week to discuss the film and its Asian influence [See: A Chat with Anonemuss]. The movie was actually shot on location in China with production support provided by the Hollywood Meditation Garden, whose goal is to promote co-productions with China to unite our two countries through film.

Society of Thieves heads to theaters this Friday, August 3rd, 2012.

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We have come to the final month of Bingo or in long and full words, HTG’S 2012 SUMMER REVIEW EXTRAVAGANZA!!! [Click for the event thread] Some of the limited prizes are off the shelves but there are still many things to grab, not to mention many of the grand prizes are still there, ranging from free mansion 100M to make a film independently. One might feel like they don’t have enough time to do it all but still, one can finish a few lines and still grab some of the prizes.

To make the journey much easier for you all, Mr. G has compiled a little guide on the bingo:

Color: Slot Tier
First, let’s talk about tiers. While there are 25 slots in a bingo, not every slot has the same amount of usage. If you are not sure which slot to fill, consider filling the higher tiers first. Some explanation on the tiers:

Tier 1: Red
Tier 1 consists of slots that can chain up to three lines – horizontal, vertical and diagonal. Since they can chain up to the most lines so you have more branches to expand on later on.

Tier 2: Yellow
Since the center slot of this one is a free slot, one can fill up a complete line (that is supposed to take 5 slots) by doing the work of 4 slots.

Tier 3: Green
Green is the last tier, they are the least useful of all slots but still, they are needed to complete some lines.

If you only plan to complete a few lines, consider the lines with red and yellow first since the complete lines are easier to complete and it allows you to have more branches if you still have time to play on.

Star: Slot Difficulty
Some tiers are more challenging than others so I use a star system to represent the difficulty in my own opinion. I do understand that everyone probably has their own opinions, but this is just a generic difficulty for reference. The stars are rated based largely on time to review (longer film = more time), availability/rarity of the eligible films and difficulty to search:

1 Star

  • Original film – Any original film will do. Plenty of choices, no extra brain juice needed.
  • Franchise film – Similar to original film.
  • Less than 40 pages – If you can’t even bother to complete this, don’t play this Bingo.
  • Out of Theaters – Tons of film to choose from. Not all are available but still, a wide range of choice.

2 Stars

  • In Theaters – Still plenty of choices but limited at the same time.
  • Opening Week (1st slot) – Easy to find but limited choices.
  • Female Lead – Thanks to Kaitlynn (Halliwell Productions) there are plenty of choices out there.
  • Two Reviews 24 Hours – The good thing is any film is fine, the bad thing is you need to review 2 instead of 1. You can hold up your reviews and submit them at the same time so the 24 hours isn’t that much of a problem.
  • Longer Than 90 Pages – Easy, a lot of choices but take some time to read.

3 Stars

  • Release before 2010 – A little harder to find those still available and ones that you are really interested in. The forum do have a few threads of recommendation for this.
  • Sequel – Limited and not all are available.
  • Has cameo – Need to find out yourself which film has cameo.
  • Female director – Not as many as “Female Lead”. Here’s a list to help you out: Kathryn Bigelow, Lexi Alexander, Sofia Coppola, Amy Heckerling, Christine Jeffs, Miranda July, Hettie MacDonald, Julie Taymor.
  • Producer’s First film – Not hard to find out by searching through the filmography of each producer, but not all are available and their first film might not be something you are very interested in.
  • 2 or fewer reviews (in theater) – A rarer/harder version of the two star’s “In Theaters” slot.
  • Opening Week (2nd slot) – You need one more for this slot, so I guess it’s more limited amount of choices, especially consider that there’s only 4 weeks of release to go.

4 Stars

  • First Review – Not easy to find. You might as well bank on a new release rathe than looking for old one. Although I can say that there are some out there, try Pedro (Baseball Mogul Productions)’s films first.
  • 2 or Fewer Reviews (Out of Theater) – A much rarer/harder version of the one star’s “Out of Theater”. Why the huge jump of difficulty? The main reason is that most of the films out of theaters already have more than 3 reviews. Again, try Pedro’s films first.
  • Has Soundtrack – It’s similar to “Has Cameo” except it’s rarer from what I see so far. Much easier if you are a musical fan though.

5 stars

  • Top 20 on Critic Corner – Many are not available, leaving you with only a few choices. Majority of them are full releases so you need more time to read. The good thing is that they are freaking good.
  • Yoda Best Picture Winner – Similar to “Top 20”, lack of choices (I think only 3 or 4 scripts are still available) and takes time to read.
  • Five Point Review – Not very easy to get 5 points in a review, I can assure you this. Also, only films still in theater can get you five points so this is like the nightmare mode of “In Theater”. I think you can ask the critic rating judges whether one particular review of yours is 5 stars or not. CzarTim did help me on this one.
  • Pre-screen A Film – Opportunity to pre-screen doesn’t come too much. Also, limited choice. You can ask producers to pre-screen their films.


  • If you have a film review that can be used on multiple slots, always go for the harder one first.
  • If you are aiming only for a few lines, pre-plan a few films to review. Set a target and achieve it.
  • Consider what slots a film can fill instead of simply putting it in an easy slot.
  • If you are confident that you can complete many lines, my personal way is to just read like 10+ films first without thinking about the slots, and then plan where to put each one when you are done. After that, fill in the remaining fields.
  • Try to save 1 or 2 of your best reviews for the 5 point review slot before putting them into another slot.
  • The easiest line is probably the left-to-right diagonal line, consists of Original Film, In Theaters, 2 or Fewer Reviews (In Theater) and Longer Than 90 Pages.

Without player’s contribution in the form of reviews, this game would not be as much fun, so please consider reviewing some films and earn extra prizes at the same time. It is a win-win situation. Here’s hoping that we can have more Bingo players before the end of the event and more importantly, have fun!

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Rogue Net is in the process of some big casting changes for its hit returning series. Session 13 is coming up quickly and Rogue Net is pleased to announce that production has begun on returning favorite Monster and the show will be featuring some new cast members.

Monster, the acclaimed series from drejr29 (Hybrid, Stop Kiss) and based on the manga of the same name, is radically retooling its cast as it prepares to go into its second season. A personal favorite series of Rogue Net chief Quantum, the show struggled to find its footing initially, but saw ratings growth that landed it a second season order. The show is dumping a lot of its first season cast which included Michael Ealy, Chris Pratt, Devon Sawa, Richard Schiff, Chase Wright Vanek, and Amy Walton; however, though a few managed to find there way to death’s door in the first season, it is rumored that some will be returning in guest/recurring capacity. However, as those cast members are being let go they’re making way for new additions. Performing alongside stars Will Estes (who picked up a Best Actor Sully nomination) and Bryce Dallas Howard will be:

Saoirse Ronan (Atonement) will be taking over the role of Rebecca Ashford, who was portrayed in the first season by Amy Walton, the show is making a bit of a time jump, jumping ahead several years from the first season finale. Her character is being described as “dark and complex” as she deals with the trauma that she experienced when she was younger. Saoirse Ronan beat out a lot of actresses for the role, including Dakota Fanning (X) and Jodelle Ferland (The Suicide Hand Guide) for the part.

Joining Ronan is Jack Gleeson who will be making his HTG debut as an older Daniel Ashford. He is taking over the role from Chase Wright Vanek, who played the part during season 1. The older Daniel Ashford, much like his twin sister, is still dealing with the trauma he experienced. However, unlike his sister, Daniel has fallen into sinister territory as he begins to show signs of sociopathic behavior which could pose a danger to those around him. The part, like that of Rebecca Ashford, was also highly coveted for younger actors as Gleeson, the son of legendary actor Brendan Gleeson beat out the likes of Anton Yelchin (Sheriff Pro Tempore) and Alexander Gould (Beyond Redemption) for the role.

The final new cast member to join the production of Monster‘s second season in a regular role is Matthew Del Negro (LA Noire 3) who is being upped from his guest appearance in the season finale episode “Consequences: Part II” in the role of Special Agent David Holcomb. Initially believed to be a recurring part, drejr29 and Rogue Net believed his character’s storyline would take up more screen time then expected and the decision was made to promote him. When that decision was made, there were rumors circulating that the part may be recast with a more known name, and rumored actors considered for the recast included Jon Bernthal (Reunion), Gabriel Macht (Bad Hare), and Dominic West (Atlantis), but it was ultimately decided that Matthew Del Negro had done an adequate enough job not to be recast.

The cast is being led by series director James Wan who will be taking the helm of the show during the second season. The first season saw a series of guest directors which included Walter Hill (Marty Robins Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs) and James Wan himself. It was rumored initially that DJ Caruso had been selected for the job but those rumors were proven false as DJ Caruso is rumored to be circling the director’s gig of an unnamed Lake Hope Features film.

The second season of Monster premieres during Session 13 which is rumored to begin in September. Stay tuned for more information as more casting information is unveiled about Rogue Net TV shows.

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