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Posted on December 8th, 2017 with No Comments

Taboo collaborators Steven Knight, Tom Hardy and Ridley Scott are to re-team for a series of Charles Dickens adaptations for the BBC, starting with A Christmas Carol.

A 3 x 60-minute version on the festive classic will form part of BBC1’s 2019 Christmas schedule, with other titles set to form a ‘boxset’ of dramas based on Dickens’ most iconic novels.

Knight, who also created Peaky Blinders, will adapt the stories for Scott’s company Scott Free London and Hardy’s indie Hardy Son and Baker.

A Christmas Carol is one of Dickens’ most adapted works, in both its traditional form and variants and parodies ranging from Blackadder to the Muppets.

The BBC’s last traditional adaptation was in 1977 with Michael Holden taking the lead role of Ebeneezer Scrooge.

The BBC has yet to confirm which other stories will follow, nor how many.

Knight promised that the adaptations would respect the spirit of Dickens’ writing, while offering a fresh spin on their timeless themes.

“Any question about narrative storytelling is answered by Dickens,” he said. To have the chance to revisit the text and interpret in a new way is the greatest privilege. We need luck and wisdom to do this justice.”

Hardy added: “A Christmas Carol is a fabulous, magical piece of theatre and an embarrassment of riches for our creative team – from character all the way through to design. Here’s to having a lot of intricate and wonderful fun. We feel very lucky.”

The adaptations were ordered by BBC Drama controller Piers Wenger, who said: “Steven’s unique ability to reimagine the past and to turn it in to must-see drama makes him the perfect writer to reimagine Dickens’ most famous works for a new generation.”

The multi-year deal echoes last year’s commission of seven Agatha Christie dramas to be co-produced by Agatha Christie Ltd’s production arm, which built on three Mammoth Screen adaptations penned by Sarah Phelps.

BBC1 was due to air the first of the adaptations, Ordeal by Innocence, this Christmas but has pulled it following sexual assault and rape allegations against cast member Ed Westwick.

Posted on November 7th, 2017 with No Comments

The actor is hitting the gym five days a week to prepare for his upcoming role

One byproduct of the modern era of superhero films is that pretty much every A-list actor, at some point, becomes a hulking beast. Tom Hardy is no stranger to looking like a giant sculpture made of meat, but his latest role as Venom, a comic-book antihero spun off from the Spider-Man universe, has required a particularly martial training regimen.

So what’s Hardy been up to in preparation for his foray into the Sony-Marvel-Disney wilderness of Spider-Man? Mostly, he’s been boxing.

Hardy has been working out with Nathan Jones, a professional MMA fighter, and trainer Mark Mene, according to Metro UK. Venom just started filming in Atlanta, but Metro reports that Hardy is working out five days a week. While Hardy has certainly had fight training before, it looks like he’s back in the ring as a core activity for this film, which will undoubtedly feature a few super-powered brawls.

There are non-boxing superhero workouts you could try, but it’s no mistake that many action movie stars figure in martial arts as a part of bulking up aesthetically for a role. Several of the stars of Blade Runner 2049 boxed or grappled to get set for Denis Villanueve’s continuation of the Ridley Scott sci-fi action classic, and Ryan Gosling in particular focuses on Muay Thai to stay in shape for active roles. Boxing is an intense, full-body workout that blasts through calories and builds strength at the same time. Some superhero workouts, like Josh Brolin’s jacked-up routine to play Cable in Deadpool 2 will focus on lifting heavy, but it’s a given that for most action roles you’re going to have to step in the ring.

Venom just started filming, so don’t expect to see Hardy’s ripped bod in a super-suit anytime soon. Riz Ahmed, Michelle Williams, and Jenny Slate are all co-starring, but some of their roles aren’t clear. We’ll have to wait and see what kind of weights they’re throwing around to get in character. Although to be fair, Hardy’s always had a head start in the bulk category.

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Posted on June 16th, 2017 with No Comments

Sony may have given Marvel Studios the right to use Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, a seemingly very good decision for everyone involved, but that doesn’t mean the studio is getting out of the comic book movie game. They are going to make use of the other Spider-Man characters they have, starting with an R-rated Venom movie that will star Tom Hardy in the lead role. Now we have word that the studio is plowing forward with the first of several Spidey spin-off movies, as Venom is reportedly going to be starting production in September.

According to Omega Underground, Sony will start shooting Venom on September 1 in both Atlanta, Georgia and New York City. Since the movie is currently slated to hit theaters on October 5, 2018, that timetable seems to make a lot of sense. There is no word yet on how long production is expected to last, but shoots for these kinds of movies often last several months, leaving plenty of time for post-production and reshoots, if need be. In rare cases, movies like Avengers: Infinity War, which are truly massive in scale, will have much longer shoots, but this probably isn’t going to be one of those cases. Especially since Tom Hardy is quite the busy dude.

A lot of productions have been shooting in Atlanta Lately. Marvel Studios has been shooting a ton of movies there, such as a very good chunk of Spider-Man: Homecoming, which also shot in New York City as well, since that is where the webslinger resides. Venom, aka Eddie Brock, also calls NYC his home, which would explain why they will be shooting there, but it also presents some potential issues. How are they going to explain why Spider-Man is nowhere to be found if the Venom movie takes place in New York City? Will they even bother? Fans will surely want some kind of explanation. Granted, the general public may not care all that much, but it is a pretty glaring elephant in the room that will need to be addressed.

In addition to Venom, which is going to be directed by Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland), Sony is also working on a Black Cat and Silver Sable movie. There is no word on a release date for that, or what other characters may be looking at getting their own movies, but Sony is planning on making use of what Marvel characters they have and is creating their own universe of movies, currently called Sony’s Marvel Universe. It has been reiterated by both sides several times that these movies and characters will not crossover with the MCU, which presents all kinds of questions and, given Sony’s track record with superhero movies over the last ten years, might make fans nervous.

As much as people may feel trepidation about a Venom movie that won’t feature Spider-Man, there are reasons to feel good about this. For one, Tom Hardy is one of the best actors working today and he chooses his projects carefully. The fact that he signed on for this is a big deal. Also, even if the movie winds up tanking, it won’t affect anything over in the MCU, so there’s really nothing to lose from the fan’s perspective. Only some money for Sony to possibly lose.

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Posted on June 14th, 2017 with 1 Comment

Tom Hardy has moved quickly to quash reports that he is set to play Jafar in Guy Ritchie’s live-action remake of Disney’s Aladdin.

There had been rumours that the 39-year-old actor would be taking the role, stirring accusations of whitewashing on social media.

The Sun was the first to report that Hardy was Ritchie’s “first choice” and had held “conversations” about the role, despite producer Dan Lin’s promise to “make a movie that’s authentic to that world”.

Will Smith is apparently being lined up to play the Genie, but apart from that the project is firmly under wraps.

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Posted on March 22nd, 2017 with 2 Comments

The 39-year-old is back in Liverpool to film series four of the hit BBC drama

Hollywood star Tom Hardy was spotted on set in Liverpool as filming for series four of Peaky Blinders begins.

The actor was seen in period dress on Dublin Street in Vauxhall as he returned to his role as Londoner Alfie Solomons.

Hardy, 39, a fan favourite in the 1920s set BBC2 gangster drama, was whisked away from the set at just after 8pm on Tuesday.

Despite the hit show being set in Birmingham, much of the filming takes place in Liverpool.

Actor Cillian Murphy, who plays Thomas Shelby, was also in action this week for scenes filmed in Toxteth.

Kinmel Street, South Street, and Powis Street have been transformed into 1920s Birmingham, with retro-looking adverts placed on the side of buildings, and classic cars, horses and carts on the road.

The new series of Peaky Blinders, which follows the Shelby family as they expand their empire across the country, was confirmed last autumn.

Star Murphy revealed earlier this year that filming would begin this month.

He said at the time: “The success of it is down to really great writing.

“People in America love it, people in Australia love it, people in Poland love it – it’s mad.”

Series one to three included locations such as Seacombe Ferry Terminal in Wirral, Croxteth Hall and Stanley Dock.

Mad Dog Casting, the firm who provide extras for Peaky Blinders and other North West productions, has put out a casting call for anyone wanting to be an extra in similar programmes.

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