Rajnikanth starrer "Robo" shooting begins on August 15th in US

Tamil superstar Rajnikant is likely to leave for the US shortly to join the US-based production team of his Rs.1.5 billion (approximately $35.5 million) venture 'Robot', said publicists. 'Robot' will be a sci-fi movie and stars Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai in the female lead. She has already reported for the photo-shoot schedule. It is being directed by Shankar whose last offering with Rajnikant 'Sivaji - The Boss' broke all box-office records, publicists added.
The movie will be simultaneously produced in Tamil, Telugu, Hindi and two other Indian languages besides being later dubbed into English, Japanese and Malay. After Rajnikant agrees to the final script, shooting will commence from August 15. The extravaganza is being jointly produced by London-based Ayngaran International and Eros Entertainment, said a statement. While Rajnikant's 'Kuselan' is schedule for July 31 release, he has almost completed his daughter Saundarya's Ocher Studios' Rs.2 billion (approximately $50 million) animated production which has live shots of the superstar.

"X-Files" - Film Review

An unjustified, unnecessary and frankly uninteresting coda to one of the great sci-fi franchises of modern times, the new 'X-Files' movie doesn't rekindle interest in a once loved property so much as punctuate the fact it ran out of steam long before it expired.

Despite a disjointed and mythology-heavy storyline making it impenetrable for newcomers, the first "X-Files" film ten years ago was still a decent piece of work. Coming off five seasons of brilliantly produced and always entertaining television which cleverly mixed serial sci-fi pathos with stand alone monster stories, the film was cinematic, well-paced, and engaging in all the ways any fan could demand. Yet it also proved a watershed moment as subsequent seasons of the show grew increasingly derivative, convoluted and tedious until it limped off the air six years ago with an unsatisfying finale.

Displaying many of the same problems that plague the most reviled of the odd-numbered "Star Trek" films (Insurrection or Final Frontier - take your pick), this second film plays like one of the weaker standalone episodes of the last few seasons stretched out to feature length. Cheaply shot, discernibly under-written, decently acted, unimaginatively directed, and ultimately pointless - it simply adds nothing to the franchise or characters in any way. When the most memorable moment of the film is a cheap George W. Bush joke, many fans will be shaking their fists with rage that even with six years and a lot of freedom on the filmmakers part - so little visible effort has been put into it.

Deliberately avoiding falling back on the show's mythology where possible (their fugitive status at the end of the series is just briefly dealt with), the story focuses on the setup that a female FBI agent has been kidnapped by a possible serial killer in North Virginia who is leaving body parts strewn around the region. Not only are Mulder and Scully brought in to consult by the new FBI kids on the block, so is a convicted pedophile priest with psychic visions (comedian Billy Connolly in the film's only decent supporting role). In spite of a comically strange twist that would have Mary Shelley rolling in her grave, the main plot adheres to all the banal formulaic hallmarks of a bad Ashley Judd thriller.

This predictable tomfoolery is still better than the secondary storyline dealing with Scully's attempts to save a kid stricken with a terminal illness. As she attempts radical treatment, the priest in charge of the hospital wants to kick him out which of course leads to some unenlightening verbal sparring more suited for a Lifetime Channel movie. Its cloying, redundant, and often awkwardly jammed together with the rest of the film which charges forward with its heavy-handed message of persistence despite the odds. That trite jingoism causes the more interesting topics of the abused becoming the abusers and even the black market in medical trafficking to be barely touched upon.

The blunt metaphor of Mulder and Scully's stubborn quests to save the agent and the kid compensating for the sister and child they respectively lost seems oddly crude for the generally more creative writer/director Chris Carter. It's not helped by the trademark long-winded monologues he gets Mulder and Scully to spout which ponders the usual issue of faith and science co-existing and clashing, though ultimately does little to resolve or even explore the issue.

More damning is the astonishingly flat direction. Carter makes decent use of his wintry outdoor Vancouver locations, but drops the ball on the film's reveals and big moments with uneven editing. Scenes of affection between our characters, always a key moment in the show and first film, are treated with no weight - making it feel almost disrespectful. The kidnapping scene which opens the film would have been tense without all the jarring intercutting.

An action chase through Vancouver streets and abandoned buildings is confusingly shot, as is the almost torture porn style scenes of female victims harassed by men resembling both a Cylon and former New Line chief Bob Shaye. The score is also nicely off-kilter at times, but the film looks decidedly cheaper than its reported $35 million production budget and there's an oddly nasty homophobic streak to it as well that will upset the slash fic writers.

The reunion of David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson is a selling point here and it is good to see them together again, but the chemistry has visibly cooled - the once brooding and then loving energy between the two has gone. Instead we see something more along the lines of a long divorced couple - a touch affectionate, a lot of resentment, and reluctantly adjusted to the fact that they'll never be entirely rid of each other. Duchovny himself often seems bored and never invested in his various scenes.

Anderson on the other hand, though there's a tinge in her voice betraying obvious reluctance to return to a role she has moved on from, is the shining light here and does strong work in spite of her often arduous subplot. Xzibit and Amanda Peet are useless as the FBI agents in charge of the case, both given no personality or character other than serving as expository mouthpieces. Mitch Pileggi as Skinner pops up out of nowhere for ten minutes of the final act, but only to serve as Scully's 'muscle'.

The series remains amongst the most defining and influential genre shows of the past two decades, in spite of ending on a whimper. 'I Want to Believe' doesn't change that assessment - only extending that whimper into a longer and painful howl. It's neither good enough to rekindle interest nor so horrible as to foul memory of the show's strengths which is a shame as even then it would at least encourage opinion and passion about the franchise again. I want to believe they were trying with this, but like the series itself - I felt cheated out of a real answer in the end by this stale, lethargic and massively disappointing footnote.

Selma Blair in Hell Boy - 2

Selma Blair walks in to our interview with a half smile, short-cropped Audrey Hepburn-style hairdo, as she busily promotes Hellboy II, in which she once again reprises her fiery role Liz Sherman in the comic book sequel.For Selma, it was important to develop her relationship with the Red heroic Hellboy in part 2 of director Guillermo del Toro's proposed trilogy. "I knew that when we left Hellboy I, Liz obviously had taken some control of her power. I mean after all, she saved the day at the end of Hellboy I, and did embrace Red at the end of that movie, so there was only one way to go, which was to move forward and leave her sad sack of a life behind her, and become a more functioning, stable woman," Blair explains in a Beverly Hills hotel conference room. "So it was interesting to go and move forward with Liz, and play her differently and I kept wanting to play her as the Liz I knew. It was difficult for me to play her as a more stable girl, because the Liz I thought I knew was really so much more hesitant and afraid. But it was great to play her as a more engaged woman in life."Throughout the film, Blair confronts an array of mythical creatures, but was gratified when she realized she would be working less with CGI than in most fantasy films of this type. "The thing about Guillermo that's so wonderful, is, these are real monsters that were created. I mean, they were puppets that were there, everything in the troll market was really there, so you don't have to deal with very much CGI. I mean, just the Golden Army was the main CGI thing, so that was the only thing that wasn't really there. And thank God, because once you create the Golden Army, you're doomed," she adds laughingly. As for a Hellboy III, "Guillermo will be very busy with The Hobbit, but Hellboy II does set up Hellboy III as a very, very sad piece of material."The 36-year old actress says that it's challenging to find the kind of work that interests you, especially having worked for the likes of Guillermo del Toro. "Guillermo spoils you so much, so everything is going to seem pretty mundane after you walk off a Guillermo Del Toro set. I mean how do you then go to, like, sitting in a living room, reciting regular lines, after you've been on the set of The Golden Army, or walking through Bethmora, or something." But her next project is different: the US TV series remake of the hit Australian satiric sitcom, Kath and Kim, which she says will have marked differences from its Aussie counterpart. "We're actually adapting it to a US version. I play Kim the daughter and Molly Shannon plays the mother and no, it doesn't have to make sense mathematically. In the original version, Gina and Jane are the same age. It's like a satire, they're comedians and it doesn't have to be accurate."As with the original Kim, "I play this very self-absorbed daughter who is obsessed with tabloids and celebrities, and it takes place in Florida. I'm married to a great actor, Mikey Day who works at the Best Buy. I think I'm a trophy wife. I still wear my clothes from when I was 13, I think I'm a really big deal which I'm not. everything is too tight on me, I think I'm gorgeous and I'm not, so it's similar to the Australian one, but definitely just middle class America."Though Blair just shot the pilot, she describes the tone of the new Kath and Kim as "like almost documentary style and kind of shot like The Office, or Arrested Development. But it's funny and strange and I think it'll take a couple episodes for people to catch on to the tone. I don't know if you're going to get it the first episode, because it's a little dry and a little weird." And she insists it's as satiric as the Australian original. "It's like the Australian one. It's not sitcom-y which is why I think it might take a minute for people to get it and it's not so in your face, but there's a lot of love. The mother and daughter really love each other, they're really close, but my character's a bit demented, I have to say, not to mention very whiny very loud and based on two people that I know very well."Blair says she was looking for a different direction in her career. "I was in Budapest shooting Hellboy II, and I kind of thought, 'You know, I think I've had it with locations for a while.' It was pretty lonely being away, even though I loved everyone on the movie so much, but it's like, 'God. I'd like to kind of lay some roots down in one place for a while.' I've been traveling so much, I feel like such a gypsy, and kind of just wanted to get settled, so I was kind of looking for a TV show."And she says that she is comfortable doing comedy. "I really love comedy, though ironically I'm not very good with sitcoms, because I get really nervous in front of big crowds, I'm always a bit uncensored, and I say the wrong things too often. I'm just going to get in trouble on a sitcom. Things are going to end very badly, so it's best I just don't put myself out there every week in that way, which means this, was perfect. I had heard about it, and I really fought for it. I really had wanted to do it, they didn't want me for it and no one thought I was right for it."The actress recalls that the show's producers "had a different idea of what Kim was going to be. I don't know exactly, but I just don't think I was anyone's idea of it, so I just really fought for it. I thought it was amazing writing and I think Ben Silverman picks amazing projects that he adapts. There are so few roles that are amazing women character-driven pieces that I just wanted to grab that one. This was kind of the first time that I really went after something, because I just don't usually have that kind of drive," the actress says, laughingly. "But it paid off. I was really happy to get it, I kind of made myself a little sloppier, because it was important that Kim thinks that she's such a big deal and has the confidence, but she's not, really." Blair even put on weight to land the role. "I don't want to make this such a weight issue thing, but it was an issue that a lot of people had. 'Oh, God, Selma can't play this, because she's a skinny Hollywood girl, and it's so important that Kim doesn't have those qualities, because middle America's not like that.' So, we just played it a little more middle of the road, but now I'm back at the gym, and the weight's not coming off," she says amidst peels of laughter.

Kandaswamy film roles damaged

Almost 30 out of 120 Kanthaswamy film rolls shoot in the exotic locations of Mexico have been found damaged. According to director Susi Ganesan and the cameraman Eka accusing the airport staffs for the damage. They say have mishandling the rolls at the airport scanner caused it. The whole Kandaswamy movie crew is in a great shock.

Kuselan Bus ready for journey

The makers of the movie Kuselan starring Rainikanth has created a new kind of advertisement. They have painted a bus with Kuselan movie images that will be seen across Chennai. This bus is specially designed for this purpose. Actress Nayantara also was there to see the Bus on Monday, which was also a commercial activity. This bus will stop for all Rajini’s fans out there. The Regional Censor Board in Chennai has given the movie Kuselan a U certificate. This movie with Rajinkanth, Nayanthara, Meena, Pasupathy and Vadivelu will be releasing worldwide on July 31st.

Cheran harsh on Priyamani

Actor and director Cheran stated that actress Priyamani did not deserve the National Award because she is not a committed actress. At first Cheran wanted to rope Priyamani for his movie Pokkisham but she has turned it down. In return she has said that it wasn’t Cheran who came with the offer it was his assistant and the reason she turned it down is because simply she was over booked. This is why she couldn’t give him any dates

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