Watch: Take a Look Back at the Films That Inspired ‘Baby Driver’ and ‘Drive’

The origins of these stoic getaway drivers can be traced back to the samurai. Seriously.

Most good stories have lineage, meaning that they come from much older stories. It’s not that there’s nothing new under the sun, it’s that solid storytelling always circles back to a handful of origins. Take Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver, for instance, and Nicholas Winding Refn’s Drive. The films are united by their cool, silent, good-looking, somewhat mysterious protagonists, played with great restraint by Ansel Elgort and Ryan Gosling, respectively, who do little but drive criminals from one place to another and yet somehow manage to be the icy nucleus at the center of each film’s respective atom.

As Patrick (H) Willems astutely shows us in his new video essay, these two films both have their origin in a Walter Hill film from the late ’70s called The Driver, about a strikingly similar character. And yet the lineage doesn’t stop there.

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‘Despicable Me 3’ #1; ‘Baby Driver’ Outperforms and ‘Wonder Woman’ Tops $700M Worldwide

Once again sequel fatigue appears to be having an impact as estimates have Despicable Me 3 coming in about $ 10 million shy of the opening weekend for Despicable Me 2 after a larger than anticipated dip on Saturday. That said, the film easily secured the weekend top spot in the domestic, international and worldwide marketplaces, leading the charge over the first three days of this long, five-day Fourth of July holiday weekend. Behind it, Sony’s Baby Driver out-performed the studio’s expecta…
Box Office Mojo – Top Stories

This airline gave a free lifetime pass to a baby born mid-flight


An Indian airline has given its youngest customer the ultimate birthday present.

Jet Airways on Sunday said it awarded a free lifetime travel pass to a baby boy born during a flight from Dammam, Saudi Arabia, to Kochi in southwest India.

The boy is the first baby to be born in-flight for Jet Airways, a spokesperson confirmed by email.

Pilots diverted flight 9W 569 to Mumbai on Sunday after a passenger went into premature labor during what would’ve been a five-hour flight. The airline’s crew members, along with a trained paramedic who was traveling that day, provided immediate medical assistance. Read more…

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‘Baby Driver’ Featurette: Real Cars, Real Locations, Real People and Real Driving

Baby Driver Stunt Driving

Nowadays it’s become easy for blockbusters to use visual effects to pull off insane stunts. It’s part of the reason some action movies have become surprisingly mundane. There’s just something that lacks excitement about a stunt you know wasn’t actually done by anything other than a computer. Even the Fast and Furious movies have taken to having more visual effects heavy action sequences when they used to rely on real stunt driving. But thankfully, this summer brings a cure for the common blockbuster.

Baby Driver is the latest film from writer/director Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, Scott Pilgrim vs the World), and a new featurette reveals that the action flick about a getaway driver trying to get away from his chosen profession is chock full of real stunt driving, with real cars, on real locations, with real people. For real.

Watch the Baby Driver stunt driving featurette after the jump.

One of the most exciting aspects of this movie is all the real stunt driving that was done. Reportedly all of the driving stunts in this movie are practical, and even the actors themselves (at least Ansel Elgort and Jon Hamm) had to go through some stunt driving training of their own, as seen in the video above. Some of the stunts featured in this video alone are extremely impressive, especially that 4×4 getting spun sideways under the semi-truck.

The rest of the Baby Driver cast includes Lily James, Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx, Jon Bernthal and Eiza González, but the real star of the movie is going to be the soundtrack that drives the entire movie. If you want to know more about just how important the film’s soundtrack is to the movie, read the rave review from our own Jacob Hall, who caught the film at SXSW earlier this year.

To see more from Baby Driver, watch the two trailers for the movie right here, and another featurette over here.

A talented, young getaway driver (Ansel Elgort) relies on the beat of his personal soundtrack to be the best in the game. When he meets the girl of his dreams (Lily James), Baby sees a chance to ditch his criminal life and make a clean getaway. But after being coerced into working for a crime boss (Kevin Spacey), he must face the music when a doomed heist threatens his life, love and freedom.

Baby Driver arrives in theaters on June 28.

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‘Boss Baby’ Dethrones ‘Beauty and the Beast’ as ‘Ghost in the Shell’ Underperforms

It’s close, but Fox and DreamWorks Animation’s The Boss Baby narrowly beat Disney’s Beauty and the Beast and delivered a #1 finish this weekend as it vastly over performed pre-release industry expectations. Meanwhile, Paramount’s Ghost in the Shell debuted with the opposite result, finishing in third position and well below expectations. Elsewhere, Lionsgate’s Power Rangers dropped over 60% in its second weekend while WB’s Kong: Skull Island, Fox’s Logan and Universal’s Get Out delivered t…
Box Office Mojo – Top Stories

‘Boss Baby’ Repeats at #1 While ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Closes in on $1 Billion Worldwide

Fox and DreamWorks Animation’s The Boss Baby topped the weekend box office for a second week in a row, once again leading Disney’s Beauty and the Beast over the course of what felt like a placeholder weekend as far as new releases are concerned. While Sony’s Smurfs: The Lost Village performed mostly as expected and New Line’s Going in Style over performed based on expectations, it seems most moviegoers are merely waiting for the next weekend’s release of The Fate of the Furious as it looks…
Box Office Mojo – Top Stories

Baby ‘Moana’ Almost Didn’t Make It Into the Movie

baby moana

One of the most magical parts of Moana is the very first scene, in which an infant Moana waddles up to the shore and discovers that the Ocean is actually alive. Wordlessly, she coos and plays with the waves, and the waves playfully toss her about as well, leading her observing grandmother to realize that Moana is the Chosen One.

But that gorgeously rendered and enchanting scene almost didn’t make it into the movie. In fact, it was never meant to be in the final film at all, according to directors Ron Clements and John Musker. The scene was originally created as test footage, to see if they had the technology to render a sentient, alive Ocean. But test audiences loved the footage so much that the filmmakers had to find a way to put it in the movie.

Musker told the Huffington Post they wanted to explore the idea of a sentient Ocean before they even settled on the idea of making Moana. “And this test was the very first footage to be animated for this film,” Musker said.

Clements and Musker tapped story-artist-turned-director Chris Williams (who would go on to co-direct the Oscar-winning movie Big Hero 6) to create the sequence. Williams drew from his own personal experience of taking his two-year-old daughter to the ocean for the first time and watching her play with the waves, and a magical scene was born.

Williams boarded the test scene and — with the assistance of Moana art director/production designer Bill Schwab, who came up with the adorable toddler version of this film’s title character – put together just what Clements and Musker asked for. In fact, he did it a little too well. The original test footage (in the video clip below) was so popular with test audiences that Clements and Musker were constantly asked “Where does it fit in the movie?”

Hank Driskell, a technical supervisor on Moana, remembered the overwhelming success of the footage:

“At this point, that Baby-Moana-meets-the-Ocean test footage had kind of taken on a life of its own. It wound up being shown at the D23 EXPO. And even though it wasn’t even part of this film’s storyline at that time, it was so adorable and so many people had fallen in love with it that the story team eventually decided that they had to find a way to integrate this test footage into the story.”

But the scene didn’t fit with Clements and Musker’s original storyline for the film, which had Moana meeting the Ocean when she was a teenager. Musker recounted:

“For a long time while we were working on this movie, Moana didn’t actually ‘meet’ the Ocean, realize that it was a living thing until she was a 16 year-old. But the only problem with that Moana-meets-the-Ocean scene was that it wasn’t nearly as charming or powerful as that test footage that Chris had put together. We tried multiple versions of this introductory scene with Moana as a 16 year-old. But none of them were as good or as strong as what Chris had done.”

The filmmakers and crew struggled to organically fit the Baby Moana sequence into the movie. When they finally did, “there was this audible sigh of relief in the building,” David Pimental, Moana’s Head of Story said. “People here were saying things like ‘She’s in!,’ “It worked!’ It was such a good day.”

And we were blessed with an wonderful scene — in a year filled with adorable baby versions of beloved characters (Hey Dory!) — that elevated the film to become one of the best Disney animated films of the past decade.

Here’s the scene — in the international trailer for Moana — as it was shown in the final movie:

The post Baby ‘Moana’ Almost Didn’t Make It Into the Movie appeared first on /Film.


The Boss Baby and Beauty and the Beast Continue Their Box Office Domination

Joe Manganiello talks about playing Hefty Smurf in the upcoming Smurfs: The Lost Village.


The Boss Baby and Beauty and the Beast Continue Their Box Office Domination

April, the last month of spring box office before the summer movie season, kicked off rather meekly with three new movies in wide release that weren’t able to dethrone the PG-rated powerhouses of DreamWorks Animation‘s The Boss Baby in its second weekend and Walt Disney Pictures‘ Beauty and the Beast in its fourth.

Despite the release of a slew of new movies in wide and limited release, The Boss Baby, featuring the voices of Alec Baldwin, Miles Bakshi, Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow, and Tobey Maguire, remained in the #1 spot for a second weekend in a row. Released by 20th Century Fox, the film directed by Tom McGrath (Madagascar) dropped 48% from its opening weekend, but still brought in $ 26.3 million to bring its 10-day domestic total to $ 89.3 million.

The Boss Baby also added another $ 37.5 million internationally this weekend to bring its overseas total to $ 110 million. Russia accounted for $ 24 million, while Mexico did $ 12 million, and it grossed $ 10 million in the United Kingdom and slightly less in France.

Meanwhile, Beauty and the Beast, starring Emma Watson, crossed the $ 400 million mark domestically earlier in the week, and then it added another $ 25 million (down 45%) over the weekend, remaining in second place to The Boss Baby. With its $ 432.3 million grossed domestically so far, Beauty and the Beast is now in the Top 15 of highest grossing films domestically of all time, just behind Steven Spielberg’s E.T: the Extra-Terrestrial (not accounting for 35 years of inflation).

The box office beast also added another $ 36 million overseas this weekend to bring its international total to $ 545 million, putting it just $ 23 million away from hitting the $ 1 billion global benchmark.

Sony Pictures Animation–in an attempt to retain the rights to the popular cartoon and comic faves The Smurfs–released an all-animated  Smurfs: The Lost Village, featuring a voice cast including Demi Lovato, Rainn Wilson, Julia Roberts, Joe Manganiello, Jack McBrayer, Mandy Patinkin, Michelle Rodriguez, Gabriel Iglesias, Ellie Kemper and Ariel Winter, on Friday.  It opened with $ 4.1 million on Friday, including $ 375,000 from Thursday previews, and ended up with an estimated $ 14 million for the weekend in 3,610 theaters and around $ 3,900 per theater.

That’s significantly less than the $ 35.6 million opening for 2011’s The Smurfs and also less than the $ 17.5 million opening of 2013’s The Smurfs 2, although both of those opened in the middle of summer.

New Line and Warner Bros. Pictures’ ensemble comedy Going in Style, starring Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, Alan Arkin, Christopher Lloyd and Ann-Margret, opened in fourth place with $ 12.5 million in 3,061 theaters, scoring a better per-theater average than The Smurfs movie.

After a rather mediocre opening last weekend, Paramount’s Ghost in the Shell, starring Scarlett Johansson and directed by Rupert Sanders, took a major tumble of 61% down from that opening weekend, falling to fifth place with $ 7.3 million and $ 31 million total.

Lionsgate’s Power Rangers took sixth place with $ 6.2 million, down another 57% from last week, as its domestic total reached $ 75 million.  Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures’ Kong: Skull Island followed with $ 5.8 million (down 33%), bringing its own domestic total to $ 156.5 million. Kong: Skull Island has also grossed $ 377 million internationally with $ 161 million in China alone.

PureFlix’s faith-based drama The Case for Christ, starring Mike Vogel, Erika Christensen, Robert Forster and Faye Dunaway, opened in eighth place with an estimated $ 3.9 million in 1,176 theaters, with a $ 3,300 per-theater average.

Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine movie, Logan (20th Century Fox), directed by James Mangold, and Jordan Peele’s directorial debut Get Out, closed out the Top 10 with around $ 4 million each. The former has grossed $ 218 million so far nationwide, while the latter is sitting pretty with $ 162.8 million.

Focus Features’ The Zookeeper’s Wife, starring Jessica Chastain, Johan Heldenbergh, and Daniel Brühl, expanded into over 800 theaters on Friday where it grossed $ 2.9 million, down 12% from its opening weekend. It has grossed $ 7.6 million so far.

Makoto Shinkai’s hit Japanese anime Your Name. (Funimation Films) opened in 303 theaters across the nation on Friday where it grossed a solid $ 1.6 million with a $ 5,200 per-theater average that was better than the three new wide releases.

Opening in limited release, director Marc (The Amazing Spider-Man) Webb’s Gifted (Fox Searchlight), starring Chris Evans, Jenny Slate and Octavia Spencer, brought in $ 476,000 in 56 theaters, an average of $ 8,500 per theater. The well-reviewed film will expand into nearly 1,000 theaters nationwide on Friday.

The debut release from fledgling distributor Neon, Nacho Vigalondo’s twisted giant monster film Colossal (A24), starring Anne Hathaway and Jason Sudeikis, opened in four theaters in New York and L.A. where it grossed $ 125,000 or $ 31,452 per theater, the best average of all films currently in release.

Also opening in four theaters in New York and L.A., Lone Scherfig’s Their Finest (STX Entertainment), starring Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin and Bill Nighy, brought in around $ 77,000 over the weekend, about $ 19,250 per location. It will also expand to more cities on April 14.

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