Monthly Archives: June 2015

Ted 2. The Thunder Buddies are back

Seth MacFarlane’s Ted 2 is now in cinemas!

In 2012, Seth MacFarlane’s “Ted” came to life! After a wish upon a shooting star, an inanimate teddy bear stuffed toy came to life and became the anthropomorphic Ted. Anyone who had seen the movie can tell that this was no ordinary stuffed toy movie. It was a stuffed toy movie set in an adult world where a cuddly teddy bear behaved like humans do, formed a bond of friendship with his owner and friend John Bennett, coveted attention, drank beer, fell in love, and got into all sorts of mischief. And we thought this was the end of it.

Back in 2012, however, MacFarlane himself confessed that a Ted sequel would be possible. Back in January 2013, even “Ted” star Mark Wahlberg remarked that plans had been made for the sequel when he was guest on Anderson Live. Finally, plans to release the sequel on 26 June of this year had been announced.

And indeed! It’s 2015, and Ted is back in cinemas this week with his most-anticipated sequel Ted 2 DVD. Mark Wahlberg returns to the screen as John Bennett, and Seth MacFarlane is back with more laughs as the eponymous Ted in “Ted 2.” Other recurring casts include Jessica Barth as Ted’s love interest, Tami-Lynn, and Patrick Warburton as John’s colleague, Guy. Joining this sequel are Liam Neeson, Morgan Freeman, and Amanda Seyfried. Guess who found a sequel budget?

Ted and Tami-Lynn eventually marry in this sequel, and the couple in love want to have their own baby. But, what now? Being a living teddy bear isn’t always a life of rainbows and unicorns, and Ted has his fair share of troubles too. Real husband trouble. How can he be a parent? How can he prove in a court of law that he is human when he looks just like any other teddy bears in stores? Well, one thing’s for sure. Ted’s going to need some help from John. After all, they’re thunder buddies for life!

Well, if you don’t want to keep on guessing, you better watch “Ted 2” because it is surely going to crack you up! Catch “Ted 2” in cinemas out this week! If you and your like-minded friends have nothing to do this weekend, this is your weekend treat! So, plan your weekend agenda now and include this funny movie of the year!

We are sure that, after watching the film, the teddy experience for “Ted 2” will still hover above your heads and deliver laughter among you and your friends, but here’s another really great news! Why don’t you pre-order Ted 2 DVD and Blu Ray now? You don’t want to miss this! If you already have the first movie, complete it with Ted 2 DVD! You’ll get the movie and more when you purchase this DVD. Heaps of added features and yes you own it for life. It’s always way better than streaming this movie online.

So, what’s stopping you? Set the date and watch “Ted 2,” and pre-order your very own copy of Ted 2 DVD so you’ll receive it right at your doorstep on its official Aussie release.

Challenges of Filming on Location

Challenges of Filming on LocationThe 4 Biggest Challenges of Filming on Location

When it comes to shooting a film, one of the biggest challenges the production team faces is scouting, choosing, and securing locations. While some big budget films like “Pacific Rim” opt to construct sets on sound stages or use green-screen technology and CGI as an easier solution to their fantastical location needs, a number of films use actual locations for their movies.

In some cases, filming on location has the advantage of cutting down the hours needed in post-production. Yet, shooting outside also presents a number of challenges, including moving actors and crews to whichever part of the world you opt to shoot in, which has its own set of problems. Remember Johnny Depp and his smuggled dogs making headlines in Australia?

Filming on location leads to a lot of issues beyond a filmmaker’s control. When shooting outside you need to consider:

1. The Weather

Mother Nature is a force to be reckoned with. Not only can we not control the weather, we often don’t have the tools to accurately predict the weather conditions months, days, even hours ahead of schedule.Challenges of Filming on Location This makes choosing outdoor locations incredibly difficult for the production and location scouting team who must find the right locations and then put together budget breakdowns. The weather can truly mess up even the best-laid plans by filmmakers.

Take for example the recently released “Mad Max: Fury Road”. Director George Miller planned to shoot the film in Australia, in New South Wales, but had to move the entire film to Namibia. The reason? Australia’s usually bone-dry desert experienced record levels of rainfall, and the desolate landscape Miller and team had anticipated, was dotted with flowers and spots of greenery. The cost of moving the entire cast and crew from one outdoor location to the next was astronomical, but the film was better for it. There would have been no way to replicate the desert and vastness of the landscape in Miller’s film on a sound stage.

In 2007, Southern California suffered from intense wildfires, and approximately 970,977 acres were burned. Shooting of TV shows “24” and “Big Shots” had to be cancelled due to smoke drifting into the area from nearby blazes. In 2011, Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner, who were shooting “Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2” on Vancouver Island, had to be evacuated as a precaution due to tsunami warnings, majorly delaying production.

Sometimes even moving inside for film cannot save you from the weather. Take for example “Avengers: Age of Ultron” which was delayed because of flooding in the studio. Director Joss Whedon thought he could outsmart Mother Nature for his blockbuster. Touché Mother Nature!

2. Issues With Pedestrians and Audience

Filming outside usually requires a great deal of orchestration, technical equipment, and setup. Crews are on set for hours before the actors show up, prepping lights, camera, and audio equipment. When whole streets are shut down for filming, the people commuting, walking, and living in a city are affected. While some city inhabitants don’t care and push through extras, or resignedly take a detour, a live, outdoor set also has the potential to draw interested and curious onlookers, and controlling inhabitants of a city can be tricky.

Take for example the filming of BBC’s “Sherlock” in London, which has divided fans on whether or not it is appropriate to watch the shooting of an episode in action. Co-creator Mark Gatiss told interviewers that a fan gathering outside shooting locations changes the way the show is being filmed, as actors and crew alike feel they are on display.

More recently in Vancouver, Ryan Reynold’s upcoming movie “Deadpool” caused some major traffic issues in the city in April when they shut down lanes for the blockbuster and drew a curious crowd. Ryan Reynolds, ever the stand-up guy tweeted:

Ryan Reynolds Deadpool

3. Adapting a Stand-In Location’s Unique Features

Sometimes it is impossible to get filming permits in the cities you want to shoot in, either because of another production, or because it is just too expensive to shoot in your perfect location.

Some locations, like Toronto, are chosen because they are cheaper to film in than some bigger cities and the governments have set up tax breaks to lure productions into Canada and it works. During 2011 and 2012, 2,322 episodes of various television series were shot in Toronto, Ontario, injecting $707.3 million dollars into the city.

But Toronto in particular is popular because of its versatile “downtown core” which can stand in for various cities. While some of these TV series (like “Murdoch Mysteries”) deliberately referenced their Great White North location, many used the city as a backdrop that could easily be manipulated to look like other metropolitans, such as the television series “Suits,” which uses Toronto as a stand-in for New York, or “Psych” which takes place in Santa Barbara. Toronto also was New York in the 2008 blockbuster “The Incredible Hulk”, Chicago for “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”, and Boston for “Good Will Hunting”.

However people familiar with Toronto know that the city has some iconic monuments that viewers may recognize (like the CN tower and the Rogers Center). This means filmmakers must be careful to omit or carefully shoot when outside, to create a realistic view of the world.

4. Political Turmoil

Even the best laid plans cannot account for political turmoil in a city or country. With pre-production starting months and sometimes even years in advance, there is no way to foresee what the political landscape will look like down the road.

No one could have predicted the 9/11 terrorist attack on New York City. So many films referenced the iconic skyline and in particular the twin towers. In the wake of 9/11, filmmakers found themselves desperately circumventing portraying the towers on film. A teaser trailer for “Spider-Man” featuring the twin towers was canned, shots of the buildings were digitally removed from “Zoolander” and “Serendipity”, the terrorist thriller “Collateral Damage” was delayed, and a Jackie Chan comedy about a World Trade Center window washer who foils a terrorist plot was cancelled.

The Godfather” almost wasn’t released due to mob pressure in the 1970s. Paramount executive Robert Evans received menacing phone calls threatening his safety and that of his child, and producer Al Rudy was tailed and had his car destroyed.

Filming Locations MapStill Worth the Hassle

While shooting on location may have its challenges, there is no escaping the fact that the authenticity of an outdoor location adds to a production, and what audiences should expect more and more of, is a blend of location shooting and CGI/soundstage. While “Mad Max: Fury Road” was shot mostly on location in Namibia, modern filmmaking techniques and post-production effects were also used extensively.

CGI can take an audience to more exotic and imagined places (think “Avatar” and “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus”), and yet, it is debatable that what makes some of the most memorable movie moments is the feel of an authentic, real location. The vast and unending deserts of “Lawrence of Arabia” today could be recreated in a studio, but would it give the audience the same effect? Would we have felt the same way about Amity Island, the town from “Jaws” if it had been filmed on a soundstage? Or was the true, beachside feel of the community at Martha’s Vineyard (the real location) what gave the film an edge?

While there may be challenges of filming on location, it is clear that there are also distinct advantages. More and more filmmakers are divided between the challenging work of shooting on location versus shooting indoors and losing the reality of an outdoor location, but until technology can replicate the realism of actual places, great filmmakers will choose to brave these challenges in order to create a better movie.

Inside Out by Disney Pixar

The new Disney Pixar movie Inside Out DVD movie is now in theatres available to pre-order on DVD and Blu Ray.

Is this story line is most likely familiar to you:

“Hey mate.”
“How are you?”
“I’m pretty well. And you?”
“I’m good. But wait, you seem so… sad. What’s wrong?”
“Really, I’m fine… It’s just…”

And your friend will begin to share to you his or her troubles. And when you peruse your friend, you will probably see the emotions he or she is conveying.

Emotions. Emotions are complicated. We often talk about emotions, but because emotions are subjective in nature, we cannot quantify them. We cannot put into numbers that Mr. Pettyfer is more dolorous than Mrs. Jones over the former’s loss of limb secondary to a diabetic gangrene than the latter’s loss of her car keys. We can only compare them utilizing words like “less” or “more,” but never in numbers or in percentage. We cannot also say that my feeling of happiness is the same as your feeling of happiness. We can only perceive them as they are manifested in verbal and nonverbal cues, but we can never know exactly how they look like.

Scientists can only describe what occurs inside the mind during some emotions, but they can never describe emotions exactly as they are. They found out that dopamine can make one feel good and keep the mood up. They found out that a neurotransmitter called serotonin could keep your mood in check, and, during deficit, will cause depression. Scientists could only give an account on what bodily chemicals can affect our mood and emotions, and that is the only thing that they can quantify. Oh, if only we can put numbers in emotions, and if only we can personify them, then we can objectively say what they truly are.

The personification of emotions is the topic of Disney Pixar’s newest and most-awaited movie of the year. There has never been something like this before! “Inside Out” tells the story of a girl named Riley, who must move away from her life at the Midwest to a new setting in California after her father gets occupied in San Francisco. Moving out of the comfort zone and being thrown into the new world will surely give one a mix of emotions, does it not? And yes, Riley’s five emotions are battling inside her mind as they try to gain control. Meet Joy, Sadness, Disgust, Fear, and Anger—Riley’s personified emotions in her head. How can Riley manage through a new house and a new school? How can the five emotions manage inside Headquarters?

You are sure to enjoy as you watch Riley be the captain of her own ship in this new life, and you will enjoy the interaction of the five emotions as they make their way inside the mental geography.

“Inside Out” is a animation cinematic masterpiece created by the makers of “Up.” If you have wondered how an old widower like Carl Fredricksen could manage through life in “Up,” then you’ll also get to wonder how the mind works inside an 11-year-old girl. You might have a different idea about how your emotions work, but this movie might even widen your perspective and make you think, “Hey, why not?” “Inside Out” is out in Aussie cinemas now and available to preorder on DVD and Blu Ray now. This is the perfect movie to watch with the whole family with school holidays coming up.

The DVD and Blu Ray release is stuffed full of bonus features on DVD, which you cannot get from a streamed version so you’ve just got to own this Disney Pixar DVD. We know you will love this. Check out “Inside Out” in theatres near you. And don’t forget to order Inside Out DVD and Inside Out Blu Ray now. These Pixar goodies will be delivered to you on its official release.

Australian Invasion: Australians in Hollywood


Australian Invasion: Australians in Hollywood

Australia has always had a rich cultural voice in the arts. From well-known novels like “Picnic at Hanging Rock” and plays like “Cosi”, Australia as a nation has always been fairly vocal about its identity and has had no trouble expressing itself creatively. The same can be said for film and television.

Early Australian Cinema began with films such as “The Story of the Kelly Gang” and moved on to unique films such as “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert”, “Strictly Ballroom”, and “Muriel’s Wedding”. And while Australia has always had a cult following for its films and television (like widely acclaimed series “Underbelly”), it could be said that in the world of film, Australia has never been considered much of a contender in the international film industry.

Although a number of big budget films are shot in the Land Down Under each year, and in fact the spending in Australia rose 25 percent in 2011, these are not necessarily Australian stories starring Australians or featuring their production teams. While this means more revenue for Australia, it also means that key locations are unavailable for homegrown productions, and resources are stretched thinner for local filmmakers, which draws away from the quality of content produced in Australia.

Australian_timelineSouthern Cross Stars on the Avenue of Stars

If you look at the entertainment industry today, and particularly focus in on Hollywood, which is still considered the mecca of film and television, you will notice something interesting. Australians are dominating. Australians are no longer relegated to playing the “Crocodile Dundee”, True Blue, or Fair-dinkum characters of entertainers past.

Australians are landing bigger and better parts and competing with international talent for leading roles. Look at new actors like Margot Robbie and the Hemsworth brothers, and established actors like Hugh Jackman, Cate Blanchett, and Nicole Kidman who are all over film and television. And that is just in front of the screen.

Behind the scenes Australians are also making their presence known. Just look at Australian writing duo James Wan and Leigh Whannel who wrote the original “Saw” (which has spanned into a multi-million dollar franchise), and Australian directors like Baz Luhrmann (“Romeo and Juliet”, “Great Gatsby”), Greg McLean (“Wolf Creek”), and George Miller (“Mad Max”), who are representing strongly behind the scenes. 

Australians Abroad

So why is it that we find more Australians in the international film scene? It boils down to two related elements: money and audience. Australia is a small country compared to the U.S., with only 23 million people versus 320 million in the United States. The audience numbers of each country are significant, due to the amount of money a film or television series can gross. With a limited audience (as in Australia) the amount of money a locally produced film can gross domestically is reduced, and therefore affects the salaries of cast and crew and the quality of the overall content.

Therefore, it is not necessarily an option for our homegrown talent to stay under the Southern Cross to perfect their art in today’s competitive market. Cassandra Magrath wrote that being an actor in Australia is a struggle and detailed her experiences on Like many performers before they get their big break, Cassandra discusses having to have more than just film and television in her wheelhouse due to the limited opportunities in Australia.

Unfortunately the market for talented Australians is not as full of potential as it is in the international market. What we find is that Australians in the entertainment world feel the need to test their talent and ambition in an overseas marketplace to be taken seriously, not only at an international level but also at home.

On a positive note, those entertainers who have left Australia to make a name for themselves overseas often come back to Australia to find many more doors opened to them because of their overseas exposure. They can choose projects that they are passionate about because they are not relying solely on the Australian film markets to support them. This is why you find top-tier Australian actors like Guy Pierce in smaller indie projects based in Australia like “The Rover” (12 Million dollar budget, only grossed $2.2 Million Worldwide)

Australia Is a Hard Market For Filmmakers


Australia is a hard market for more than just the actors. Producers and directors have a hard time here, too. That’s why many of them look to the international market instead.

Bringing a film into the world is a lot like bringing a human being into the world. There is a lot of blood, sweat, and tears and when you finally have the finished product, you want to show it off to the world; you’re proud of your baby. That’s why international film festivals are so important as an avenue for garnering more support for the Australian film scene. This year, six Australian films were screened at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival.

Co-productions are another incredible way Australians have taken advantage of expanding into an international market and gathering a wider audience. The new film “Strangerland” (starring Australian darlings Nicole Kidman and Hugo Weaving) played at Sundance this year and was an Irish/Australian co-pro. While many filmmakers start out making films in an effort to tell a story, there is no denying that to make real money a filmmaker needs to find a bigger fish than just one market, in this case, Australia.

It is for these reasons that you find much of Australia’s talent leaving home to find work in bigger markets, be that the U.S., the U.K., or Canada. As Australians, we are fortunate to speak the same language as other major film and television havens. And people seem to love Australians.

Increased Australian Presence in Hollywood Is Good for Australia

The Australian invasion of Hollywood (or Europe, or Canada, or Asia), cannot be viewed as a bad thing. Although perhaps driven by the desire to seek bigger markets, the result of our talent moving abroad for opportunities is that Australians are using their networks and experience overseas to funnel more money and investment back into Australian film and television and to continue to bring passion projects to light.

Australians are known to be easygoing and hardworking, and amongst Australian international entertainment professionals there is a culture of helping one another out. In Los Angeles, for example, there are often networking events held for Australians to find one another and form mutually beneficial relationships, and there are social media groups and events geared towards fostering Australian relationships abroad.

The talented, creative individuals, who leave Australia to pursue their careers, are shining a light on our diverse and versatile industry and as a result, films like the recent “Strangerland” or 2010’s critically acclaimed “Animal Kingdom” are garnering attention. We can only hope that as the population of Australia grows, so too will the domestic Australian film and television industry, allowing our best and brightest to choose to stay home for their creative careers, rather than moving away.

CSI End Date Announced

The date for the end of CSI has been announced so now’s the time to order the CSI Season 14 DVD.

What’s cooler than ice block? It’s a series where brilliant sleuths scientifically and systematically gather pieces of evidence, and critically process them to solve murder of different faces, no matter how organized and well-planned. Best of all, these forensic investigators put their expertise to very good use to catch criminals.

If you still think that forensic dramas only survive until a seventh or eighth season, here’s good news for you. Here’s one series that reaches its fifteenth season. And that series is no other than CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

Because of its great scripting, great storyline, great acting, great casts, and great directing, CSI is one of the longest running primetime TV series in the United States, currently being the seventh. It is recognized internationally, has millions of viewers, and has been nominated for awards in the industry many times already. In fact, the show received nine awards! Fantastic!

The fifteenth season ended last February in the US, and instead of a sixteenth season, the show will conclude with a two-hour movie special this September before finally bidding the airwaves goodbye. But what if you had missed previous seasons? What if you had missed parts of the fourteenth season? There’s no need to fret! More plot twists are going on in Season 14, and we can’t help but give you some bits of teasers in here.

So, what exciting thing should you expect from CSI Season 14? Well, there’s more drama, more complicated plots, and more mysteries to be solved. Last season saw the abduction of Morgan Brody and Jim Brass’s daughter Ellie by a serial killer, and this season, the whole team, headed by D.B. Russell, must race with time to save them. The team must also use their smarts and science to hunt down serial killers and arsonists, unriddle a cannibalistic crime, recall past events to solve present ones, gather pieces of evidence in casinos, hotels, spas, airport runways, brothels, and any other scenes where crime had been committed, and solve seemingly unrelated crimes. Most of the episodes in the series show us how the CSI team put their crime-fighting sleuthing skills to the test, but what happens when D. B. Russell himself is held hostage? This season also paves the way to the pilot episode of the spin-off CSI: Cyber, and also closes the curtain for Jim Brass in his last appearance.

So many events and twists occur in CSI Season 14. Excited? If you are, then pre-order CSI Season 14 DVD now. While waiting for the concluding TV movie, pre-order CSI Season 14 DVD now from DVDLand! This part will have its official Aussie DVD release on 30 July 2015, but you can put your order now to be sure to be the first to own on it’s release date. Be the first in your street to place an order so that you will receive CSI Season 14 DVD straight to your door on its official release! You won’t regret it.