1. Ken Loach wins his second Palme d’Or at Cannes

Festival de Cannes 2016 is over and it offered a wide display of talent from some of the best filmmakers in the world. Beside out-of-competition heavyweights such as Woody Allen’s Café Society and Steven Spielberg’s BFG, the festival boasted an array of cinematic treats from across the globe.

Veteren director Ken Loach took home the coveted Palme d’Or for the second time in his career (after winning for The Wind That Shakes The Barley in 2006) for his topical drama I, Daniel Blake. Second prize went, somewhat controversially, to Xavier Dolan for his latest It’s Only the End of the World; the film was divisive among critics but that didn’t stop George Miller & co. awarding Dolan with the Grand Prix.

Best director was shared between Cristian Mungiu and Olivier Assayas for Graduation and Personal Shopper respectively, while Asghar Farhadi took home best screenplay for The Salesman. British directing extraordinaire Andrea Arnold also won the Jury Prize for American Honey.   

2. Thor: Ragnarok promises Goldblum, Urban, a “Hulkier Hulk”

Everybody loves a buddy road movie. Whether it’s Midnight Run, Planes Trains and Automobiles or Identity Thie-err, Thelma and Louise, it’s a near-surefire hit. So, Mark Ruffalo’s description of the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok as an “intergalactic buddy road movie with Banner and Thor” is welcome news. Speaking to Entertainment Tonight, Ruffalo confessed that Thor’s next outing will feature a “Hulkier Hulk” and Cate Blanchett as Hela, The Death Queen. He also stated that “she is going to kill us” but that’s probably exaggeration, otherwise someone should really stop Ruffalo from doing press conferences. Joining Ruffalo and Hemsworth will be the recently announced Jeff Goldblum as the eccentric Grandmaster, Karl Urban as the villainous Skurge, and Tessa Thompson as the mysterious (read: no adjective available) Valkyrie. Thor: Ragnarok is due in UK cinemas on October 27 next year.

Chris Hemsworth Thor

Courtesy of: Disney.

3. John Sayles to write and direct Django Lives!

In what must undoubtedly be viewed as one of more unusual projects currently in production, elusive independent filmmaker John Sayles has agreed to write and direct a sequel to Sergio Corbucci’s iconic, cult western Django (via Indiewire). Not only that, after an on the nose cameo in Tarantino’s Django Unchained, Sayles’ film will star Django himself, Franco Nero, reprising his title role. Sayles’ film will have nothing to do with Tarantino’s hit and, while plot details still remain scarce, it is believed that the film will pick up some fifty years after the plot of the original film to coincide with that Django‘s 50th anniversary this year. Intriguing.

4. X-Men: Apocalypse draws big numbers overseas

The initial reaction to X-Men: Apocalypse has been less than ecstatic; boasting a bloated cast, haphazard plotting, and an underused villain, it is generally being considered the weakest of Bryan Singer’s four x-capades. But that hasn’t stopped it from proving a big hit in Europe where it has taken over $130million ahead of its domestic release this weekend (via Variety). It will be interesting to see how the numbers look at the end of the weekend as Apocalypse goes head-to-head with two other poorly received blockbusters, Alice Through The Looking Glass and Warcraft.

5. Teaser for Beauty And The Beast breaks record, expectations

Proving that people really, really like live-action adaptations of previously animated Disney films (so long as they don’t involve Snow White and/or any of its peripheral characters) the teaser for the Emma Watson-starring Beauty And The Beast has broken the record for highest view count in 24 hours – with 91.8 million views. Really, it’s no wonder Disney is now looking into making a live action The Little Mermaid as well [via Deadline]. Of course, this record only applies to teasers 90 seconds and under; Star Wars: The Force Awakens can still walk around cocksure with the record of 112 million views in 24 hours holding steady, at least until Beauty And The Beast calls in some of that hardcore feather duster / candelabra action that youngsters are crying out for.

6. Denis Villeneuve and Jake Gyllenhaal to reunite for The Son

Prisoners and Enemy’s Denis Villeneuve and Enemy and Prisoners’ Jake Gyllenhaal are to team up for a third time – with Jo Nesbø’s crime novel The Son earmarked for their involvement, reports Variety. No cast has yet been announced, and Gyllenhaal is set to produce through his company Nine Stories rather than star, but Villeneuve is attached to direct the drama which follows a teenage wrestler whose life has fallen apart in the wake of a number of tragedies. Whilst in prison, the boy discovers the truth about his father’s death and begins tracking down those he believes responsible. Jake Gyllenhaal may well be the best working actor in Hollywood today, but it’s doubtful he could still pass for 15 – though don’t be surprised if he does feature at some point.

7. Another Finding Dory trailer floats in

Given the universal adoration of Finding Nemo, the approach of its sequels has been relatively understated. Then again, it’s not like Disney are desperate for a hit or anything. While it appears to move very much to the beats of its parent film, there is no denying that it is nice to be back in Pixar’s ocean once again.

8. Daniel Craig and Katherine Heigl on board for Soderbergh’s Logan Lucky

The fantastic news of American indie master Steven Soderbergh’s return from “retirement” is met by more great news regarding the cast of his upcoming film Logan Lucky. Daniel Craig and Katherine Heigl are set to join Channing Tatum, Adam Driver, Riley Keough, and Seth MacFarlane in what has been described as a crime thriller featuring a NASCAR race (via Empire). While few took his retirement all that seriously, the news of Soderbergh’s return is very welcome; at his best, he still remains one of America’s finest living directors.

9. Star Trek boldly goes and gets itself a new trailer

The first trailer for Star Trek Beyond was not particularly well-received, not least by the film’s writer Simon Pegg who implored fans to “hang in there” for the next one – as well as the film itself. Well, now the newest trailer has found itself online. Showing off a little more of the Star Trek that fans presumably wanted the first time around – questions about humanity, ruminations on death, a whole lorra explosions and phasers and ass kicking and John Cho – Trailer #2 should do the job. Justin Lin’s first time in the Trekkie director’s chair, Star Trek Beyond is set for a UK release date of July 22 this year.

10. Fruit Ninja movie in the works

Video games, baby! They’re hothothot! After the unmitigated recent releases of Angry Birds and Ratchet and Clank, not to mention some level of anticipation for Duncan Jones’s upcoming Warcraft: The Beginning, it’s no wonder several existing IPs are getting snapped up. Accordingly, in the wake of last week’s announcement that Tetris was set to spawn a trilogy of sci-fi thrillers (news that may carry a sense of déjà vu), comes word from The Hollywood Reporter that Fruit Ninja is next on the block. Seeing an opportunity in the second highest selling iOS game of all time – with over 1 billion downloads – Vinson Films have partnered with Halfbrick Studios in order to produce the definitive game about ninjas slashing fruit into multiple pieces, at least until Metal Gear: Revengeance gets its own adaptation.

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