Monthly Archives: July 2011

Just Released: New Batman, New Spider-Man Trailers

I’m locked into Comic Con right now. With so much material and glam I just can’t get enough.

Starting with some top Hollywood talent in 2011 discussing their favorite moments (Jon Favreau).

And, now the studios fighting each other to get out the best trailer. Check out these two and let me know which one wets your pants..

The Dark Knight Rises

The Amazing Spider-Man

Movie Posters

You know me, I love to reward those who hit the bottom of the page. Check out these just released movie posters!

Comic-Con Turns Geeks into Hollywood Kingmakers

“Everything I learned about the movie business I learned at Comic-Con.”

Jon Favreau

Walking around San Diego for the 2011 Comic Con is an experience like no other. It combines the crowds and energy of SXSW with the geekiness of opening night at Harry Potter.

There are costumes galore with (my favorite) girls as sexy evil villains, stormtroopers, ghostbusters, goths, and geeks — and it’s, in a word, awesome.

You can buy comic book art, comic books, legendary toys, video games, and mingle like it’s nerd cocktail hour.

The big deal, though, is Hollywood. The industry has taken over the event. Every celebrity actor, director, agent, and writer shows up. This year Steven Speilberg and Peter Jackson wowed a Con audience with a dual-appearance. They spend millions on everything from sneak peek trailers, to gigantic booths and exclusive parties.

And, we love it.

If you’re at all intrigued you must read the article below.

It’s a personal account from Jon Favreau, the actor (Swingers, PCU) and writer/director (Elf, Iron Man, Cowboys & Aliens), on his experiences of both bombing and killing it.

He gives some insight into how movies have intersected with this Con and turned the geeks into king-makers.

“The energy hit me in the sternum like a wrecking ball. The feeling in that room created a flood of endorphins that took hours to dissipate from my brainpan. After showing the clip a second time, I ran off the stage, and a year before that movie ever made it into theaters, Iron Man was a hit. Any misgivings about the new studio, the director or the casting of Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark seemed to evaporate in those few, precious moments. By the time Downey took the stage on Saturday during the Marvel panel, he was welcomed as one of their own.”

read the full article at The Hollywood Reporter

Weta: servicing the world’s creative industries

I’m a movie geek and can’t get enough movie magic especially when it comes to Special FX.

I buy DVD’s just for the special features. The Lord of the Rings set, which is 16 or so discs, is amazing with it’s 26+ hours of behind the scenes features on special FX.

Which is where I first heard of the Weta Workshop, based in New Zealand, with the motto: servicing the world’s creative industries.

In addition to LOTR, the company has worked on District 9, The Chronicles of Narnia, Avatar, Fantastic Four, Master and Commander, and more. An impressive line-up.

Weta works on weapons, creatures, armour, vehicles, miniatures, make-up, and props. Awesomeness.

Their latest film, currently in production, is The Hobbit with Peter Jackson, and just released is a 12-minute behind the scenes featurette. All about these 13 dwarves…short, bearded, and armoured.

The video, which gets really good once the weird Peter Jackson intro is done.

If you can’t get enough of that here are some awesome photos of Weta’s work:

13 dwarves photo by James Fisher – All other photos from Weta

Weta: servicing the world's creative industries

I’m a movie geek and can’t get enough movie magic especially when it comes to Visual FX.

I buy DVD’s just for the special features. The Lord of the Rings set, which is 16 or so discs, is amazing with it’s 26+ hours of behind the scenes features on special FX.

Which is where I first heard of the Weta Workshop, based in New Zealand, with the motto: servicing the world’s creative industries.

In addition to LOTR, the company has worked on District 9, The Chronicles of Narnia, Avatar, Fantastic Four, Master and Commander, and more. An impressive line-up.

Weta works on weapons, creatures, armour, vehicles, miniatures, make-up, and props. Awesomeness.

Their latest film, currently in production, is The Hobbit with Peter Jackson, and just released is a 12-minute behind the scenes featurette. All about these 13 dwarves…short, bearded, and armoured.

The video, which gets really good once the weird Peter Jackson intro is done.

If you can’t get enough of that here are some awesome photos of Weta’s work:

More on The Hobbit is available – see production video #6

 

// 13 dwarves photo by James Fisher – All other photos from Weta

Milk, it does a body…BAD?

This is a re-post of a piece I wrote last year on Posterous about milk and breaking my addiction to it. I’m reposting it because I’m writing a piece in response to the recent controversy over a PMS milk campaign.

A habit is a behavior pattern acquired by frequent repetition or physiologic exposure that shows itself in regularity or increased facility of performance. An addiction is an excessive habit or behavior. I’ve recently come to the conclusion that I’m a milk addict.

Ever since college, I’ve been a huge milk consumer – a milk junkie really. One night my freshman year, I drank eight single serving milk cartons in one sitting – which didn’t bode too well for me since I discovered I’m lactose intolerant. Then I switched to lactose-free and soy milk and it only fueled my love affair with milk further. I love it in my morning coffee and I love the sugar-free caramel iced soy lattes the baristas at Starbucks create for me. I love it on the rocks. I love it from a box. On average I go through a 32oz carton (4 cups) a day which prompted @robotchampion to challenge me to examine my milk consumption habits as well as milk and the dairy industry. Upon doing so, I discovered some interesting facts.

First, the now famous “Got Milk?” campaign launched in 1993 was done so to compete with beverage titans like PepsiCo and Coca-Cola who were taking away market-share with the emergence of new juices, fruit drinks, iced teas, coffee drinks, bottled waters, and soft drinks. The advertising firm responsible for this campaign concluded that the best way to increase milk consumption was to not focus on the 30% of Americans who didn’t consume milk but instead convince the 70% of milk-drinkers to use milk more frequently or to drink it in larger amounts. And it worked. Between 1994 and 1995 alone, milk consumption increased almost 40%.

Second, in 2005, the USDA and HHS recommended an increase in non-fat or low-fat  milk and milk products as one its nine adjustments to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. However, to meet the dairy guidelines, consumption of milk and milk products would have to increase by 66 percent, even though approximately 70% of our population cannot tolerate lactose as adults – we lack of the required enzyme in our digestive system to metabolize the key ingredient in milk.

Third, non-drinking eastern cultures actually have lower incidents of maladies such as osteoporosis. In fact, hip fractures, associated with bone density loss, are more frequent in populations where dairy products are commonly consumed and calcium intakes are relatively high. Why? Many scientists and researchers believe that animal-based diets are the culpritA 20-year study of the health and dietary habits of rural Chinese found that:

[They] consume less than half the calcium we`re told is necessary, virtually all of it from plant sources, in particular leafy green vegetables. They have one-fifth the incidence of hip fracture of Americans. Although they consume more calories per day than we do, only about 10 percent of their diet is from animal sources. On average, American diets are 70 percent animal-based.

Furthermore it reveals:

Early in life, American girls consume higher amounts of animal-based foods than Asian girls, which leads to relatively dense bones, high levels of estrogen, and early sexual maturation. The age of menarche has been dropping for decades in this country and now often occurs as early as age 10. In rural China, girls don`t usually begin menstruation until age 15. Chinese women have only about two-thirds of the amount of circulating estrogen that American women do, which helps account for their far lower rate of breast cancer.

Finally, it’s been found that caffeine found in coffee and soda acts as a diuretic in the body and increases the amount of calcium we excrete in our urine for several hours after we drink it. Translation: the more soda and coffee we drink, the more calcium we need.

In giving up milk, I’m forgoing soy milk. I’m a little skeptical of something that’s so engineered. And it’s tough for me to support industries like dairy and soy that do so much harm to the environment. Thank god for Milkaholics Anonymous.

 *NOTE: As an update, I still drink Starbucks iced soy lattes but I no longer buy milk and consume it at home.

New music, surf film: Billabong Blowup (plus soundtrack)

Surfers know the best place to find new music is in a surf film. We would probably watch surfing for hours but it definitely helps to have great music.

The latest surf film from Billabong, Blowup, has it all. Great shots, editing that flows, and amazing music. Surprisingly the majority of the songs are form girl bands, and they rock!

The movie is free to download and here are the songs from it. I found a video for each one which you can see on the YouTube playlist. Plus, below is the full set list (soundtrack) and a video playlist of all at once.

My new favorite bands :)

  • Holly Golightly – “Nothing you can say”
  • Cassete Kids – “Lying Around”
  • Stiff Little Fingers – “Suspect Device”
  • The Pandoras – “Hot Generation” (song from the film, “I want him”, can’t find online)
  • The Spinnerette – “Ghetto Love”
  • French Films – “Dropout Jr.”
  • Hundred in the Hands – “Commotion”
  • Black Lips – “Modern Art” – Arabia Mountain
  • Gypsy and the Cat – “Time to Wander”
  • Jay Reatard – “My Shadow”
  • The Dolly Rocker Movement – “Memory Layne”

King for a day: The internet finally takes down books, cd’s, and dvd’s

Rumors are swirling that Borders bookstores is shutting down 400 stores and laying off 11,000 employees. Which may be the kill shot from the internet we have been talking about for years.

First, it stinks that several thousand folks are going to be out of work. I always liked bookstore employees because they are the friendliest in the retail world.

If you look to Barnes and Noble, the titan of bookstores, they too are on the chopping block. Up for sale with a potential buyer, the company is losing money every quarter. The strongest segment of the business is their e-book reader, the Nook, and the corresponding e-book sales.

This all means that book superstores are going the way of the Dodo bird.

The movie business is already done. Blockbuster is in the process of closing 1,000+ stores. Hollywood Video is in bankruptcy and, for me, they even tore down the building at the one I used to work at in Westwood!

The sales of DVD’s also plummeted 20% in the first quarter of 2011.

I can’t remember the last time I bought a DVD.

Music and CD sales have been done for a while. The stores that used to sell CD’s: Wharehouse, Virgin Megastores, Tower Records, and others are now just fading memories. The empty stores they left behind only show a passing resemblance to the hotspots they once were.

Here is a chart that shows 2009 sales of CD’s lowering back down to 1985 levels.

King for a day.

The internet has finally overcome and I say it’s for the better. Music is not dead, movies are still alive, and I’m reading more books than ever.

Perhaps the megastores, big boxes, and local DVD stores are gone. But, in their place I think we can expect more mom/pop used book stores, cult favorite CD stores (Amoeba music), and on-demand movies.

It’s a plus for all of us!

Right?

King for a day: The internet finally takes down books, cd's, and dvd's

Rumors are swirling that Borders bookstores is shutting down 400 stores and laying off 11,000 employees. Which may be the kill shot from the internet we have been talking about for years.

First, it stinks that several thousand folks are going to be out of work. I always liked bookstore employees because they are the friendliest in the retail world.

If you look to Barnes and Noble, the titan of bookstores, they too are on the chopping block. Up for sale with a potential buyer, the company is losing money every quarter. The strongest segment of the business is their e-book reader, the Nook, and the corresponding e-book sales.

This all means that book superstores are going the way of the Dodo bird.

The movie business is already done. Blockbuster is in the process of closing 1,000+ stores. Hollywood Video is in bankruptcy and, for me, they even tore down the building at the one I used to work at in Westwood!

The sales of DVD’s also plummeted 20% in the first quarter of 2011.

I can’t remember the last time I bought a DVD.

Music and CD sales have been done for a while. The stores that used to sell CD’s: Wharehouse, Virgin Megastores, Tower Records, and others are now just fading memories. The empty stores they left behind only show a passing resemblance to the hotspots they once were.

Here is a chart that shows 2009 sales of CD’s lowering back down to 1985 levels.

King for a day.

The internet has finally overcome and I say it’s for the better. Music is not dead, movies are still alive, and I’m reading more books than ever.

Perhaps the megastores, big boxes, and local DVD stores are gone. But, in their place I think we can expect more mom/pop used book stores, cult favorite CD stores (Amoeba music), and on-demand movies.

It’s a plus for all of us!

Right?