Sony Pictures’s CinemaCon 2016 presentation showcased upcoming films like Passengers, MIB 23 and more!
Sony Pictures kicked off its 2016 CinemaCon presentation with a look at Ang Lee’s upcoming drama, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. Featuring a cast that includes Kristen Stewart, Steve Martin, Vin Diesel, Garrett Hedlund and more, the film follows a young military private who returns to America after a harrowing experience in Iraq. A guest at a Thanksgiving football game, Billy (played by newcomer Joe Alwyn) reflects back on his experiences as he tries to grapple with what it all means. It was revealed that, when the film hits theaters on November 11, high frame rate footage will be used to differentiate the war footage from the football game narrative.
“It’s sort of weird being honored for the worst day of your life,” says Billy in the trailer, which is backed by a choir version of David Bowie’s “Heroes.”
“Your story no longer belongs to you,” Steve Martin’s character tells him later. “It’s America’s story now.”
“What really happened over there?” Kristen Stewart’s character asks at the very end. Billy can only stare in silence.
Sony Pictures then moved on to their upcoming original science fiction tale, Passengers. Stars Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence took the stage to introduce the project, which features Pratt as a man named Jim Preston who, no longer feeling like he has a place on Earth, decides to go instead to an Earth colony 120 years away. Although he’s supposed to sleep through the journey with the rest of the transport vessel Avalon’s 5,258 person crew, Preston winds up waking up only 30 years into his journey. Unable to return to the unconscious state needed to survive the journey, he instead explores the ship and, in the footage showcased, finds some faint companionship in a Shining-esque robot bartender, played by Michael Sheen. Even though he’s effectively the only person alive on the Avalon, Preston finds that he’s still considered a lower class member of society by the ship’s computer systems and he’s denied many of the luxuries that richer travelers would receive. Soon, however, Preston is no longer alone as another passenger awakens in Lawrence’s Aurora Dunn. She’s a much wealthier writer who is making the voyage so that she can write about her experiences.
Although the special effects were not entirely finished, the Morten Tyldum film promises some great sci-fi visuals, including one sequence where Aurora is swimming in the ship’s pool when the artificial gravity goes out, trapping Aurora without air in a giant floating sphere of water.
Although production on the film has not yet begun, the Sony Pictures presentation offered a tease of Danny Boyle’s long-awaited Trainspotting 2 with a video composed of footage from the 1996 original, set to Iggy Pop’s “Lust For Life.” Production on Trainspotting 2 should begin next month. There was also a very quick tease of Edgar Wright’s now-filming Baby Driver, flashing quick shots of a cast that includes Ansel Elgort, Jon Hamm, Lily James, Eiza Gonzalez, Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx and Jon Bernthal, set agains Golden Earring’s “Radar Love.” Rounding out Sony Pictures’ TriStar titles was an extended look at Money Monster, a high concept thriller directed by Jodie Foster and starring George Clooney, Julia Roberts and Jack O’Connell. You can check out the recent Money Monster trailer right here.
On the Sony Pictures Animation front, five different projects were brought up, including Smurfs: The Lost Village (4/7/17), The Emoji Movie (8/11/17), an untitled nativity story, told from the point of view of a donkey and his animal friends (12/8/17), Hotel Transylvania 3 (9/21/18) and the animated Spider-Man film written by Phil Lord and Chris Miller (12/21/18).
Describing The Emoji Movie as “a movie that’s about the power of self expression,” Sony Pictures Animation President Kristine Belson teased a storyline set inside an iPhone. The Emojis within live in a place called Emoji valley and wind up having to leave the village to head into the “world of wallpaper.” From there, every icon on a phone becomes its own distinct location.
“We’re going to bring in some really, really funny new monster recruits,” Belson then teased of the next Hotel Transylvania while keeping relatively mum on the animated Spider-Man film.
“This is a vision of Spider-Man that will take your breath away,” she said. “It will break new ground for both animation and the superhero genre.”
Moving into the Screen Gems portion of their presentation, Sony Pictures offered up a first trailer for Resident Evil: The Final Chapter. In classic Resident Evil style, the trailer begins as a cheerful Umbrella Corporation infomercial before static takes over the screen.
“My name is Alice,” says Milla Jovovich. “This is my final story.”
We see the cast assemble for some kind of offensive with the tagline appearing onscreen, “All evil things must end.”
The Sony Pictures Screen Gems portion then offered additional trailers for films like Underworld Blood Wars, which seems to take place in the wake of the arrival of a new Lycan leader, in turn bringing back Kate Beckinsale as the vampire Selene to bring him down. Other trailers included the found footage home invasion thriller Keep Watching, the psycho-surrogate thriller When the Bough Breaks (starring Morris Chestnut, Regina Hall and introducing Jaz Sinclair), and the latest from Evil Dead‘s Fede Alvarez, Don’t Breathe. Set for release on August 26, Don’t Breathe stars Jane Levy, Dylan Minnette and Daniel Zovatto as a trio of kids that break into a house hoping to rob a blind man. They wind up facing a blind Stephen Lang who, despite his disability, reveals that he’s a killer and has no intention of letting the kids leave the house alive.
Sony Pictures then teased The Dark Tower with a teaser featuring production art and images from the book covers. Starring Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey, the massive Stephen King adaptation officially began production this week and is heading for a February 17, 2017 release.
Also revealed were new trailers for The Shallows, which features Blake Lively as a surfer stranded on a rock 200 feet from the shore. The tide is rapidly rising, but somewhere in the water around her, she’s being stalked by an enormous great white shark. From Orphan and Non-Stop director Jaume Collet-Serra, The Shallows arrives on June 24.
Ron Howard’s third Dan Brown adaptation also got a trailer. Inferno features the return of Tom Hanks as his Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons character, Robert Langdon. The trailer sees Langdon pulled into a new mystery that revolves around a map of Dante’s Inferno and the poet’s depiction of a nine-circled Hell. Look for it to arrive on the big screen October 28.
Director Paul Feig then introduced his Ghostbusters cast with Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones taking the stage (apparently it was their first reunion since production wrapped) to introduce what was said to be the film’s first scene. Opening outside the “Aldrige Mansion Museum,” we’re introduced to a trio that includes Abby Yates (McCarthy), Jillian Holtzmann (McKinnon) and Erin Gilbert (Wiig). They’re investigating some kind of paranormal report and Gilbert turns to a man outside the museum (played by Zach Woods).
“We’re looking for a man named Ed Mulgrave,” says Gilbert.
“Ed Mulgrave?” says Woods’ character. “He died 15 years ago!”
The trio turn to see another man arriving.
“Who is this, then?” Gilbert asks.
“That’s his son, Edward Mulgrave, Jr.”
“That’s obviously who I meant,” Gilbert sighs.
Entering the library, Yates pulls out the new PKE Meter and explains to the team what it is. Yates and Holtzmann consistently joke back and forth, but Gilbert is far more reserved. When she steps in a small patch of slime, her first thought is that her friends are pulling a prank. She confronts them about it, but then all three turn to see that a blue glowing light is coming up from a just-opened basement door. This is the female ghost featured in the trailer and we see it vomit slime all over Yates (to the delight of Holtzmann, who continues to eat Pringles throughout the scene).
Running from the library, terrified, the trio suddenly stop and realize that they’ve finally seen a ghost and overjoyed at what that means for them moving forward.
From there, the footage turned into the trailer with an extended scene at the end of Dan Aykroyd’s cameo. In it, Gilbert is trying to hail a cab but the cabbie, played by Aykroyd, refuses to drive to Chinatown, despite ghost activity in the area.
“Look,” says Aykroyd. “I don’t drive to Chinatown, I don’t give rides to crazies and I ain’t afraid of no ghost!”
“I’m not afraid of ANY ghosts!” Gilbert corrects as he speeds off.
Next up was an extended trailer for Sausage Party, the R-rated animated film from Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg about the secret life of food items. That led directly into a short presentation on Antoine Fuqua’s upcoming western, The Magnificent Seven with Fuqua joining star Chris Pratt to introduce the very first footage that has been revealed anywhere. The project reteams Fuqua with Denzel Washington and boasts a cast that also includes Ethan Hawke, Vincent D’Onofrio, Haley Bennett, Byung Hun Lee, Jason Momoa, Matt Bomer, Peter Sarsgaard and Billy Slaughter.
“He’s a gambler,” said Pratt of his character, a cowboy by the name of Joshua Farraday, “and somebody you don’t want to cross.”
The footage began with Washington dressed in black, coming into a saloon and having a confrontation with the bartender, who he ultimately shoots.
“Man carries a gun,” says Washington’s Sam Chisolm. “He tends to use it.”
“Pity,” says Farraday when he sees the dead bartender. “I just ordered a drink from him.”
We see Chisolm hire Farraday as the first of his group. They’re ultimately working for Haley Bennett’s character.
“You seek revenge?” Chisolm asks her.
“I seek righteousness,” she shoots back. “But I’ll take revenge.”
The footage then takes off with a montage of action set to Dr. Dre’s “One Shot One Kill.”
“Take off that badge!” Chisolm screams to a crooked lawman at the end of the footage.
“I’m still sheriff!” he shouts.
“Consider this a recall,” Chisolm glares.
Before Tom Holland took the stage (read about his appearance and the title reveal of Spider-Man: Homecoming right here), Sony Pictures offered a rapid fire look at logos for films extending quite a bit into their upcoming slate. Among the titles that flashed on the screen were The Girl Who Played With Fire (the sequel to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo), a CGI take on Beatrix Potter’s Peter Rabbit, the upcoming Elizabeth Banks-directed Charlie’s Angels reboot, James Wan’s big screen Robotech movie, the Jumanji reboot, Blade Runner 2, Insidious: The Next Chapter, Zombieland 2, the Men in Black/21 Jump Street sequel, officially titled MIB 23, Bad Boys III, The Equalizer 2, Flatliners, Barbie, and, from the creators of Broad City, a film starring Scarlett Johansson called Rock Yhat Body.
Let us know which of these Sony Pictures projects you’re most looking forward to in the comments below and check back for more from CinemaCon 2016 all week long.