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The Matrix Resurrections | Yahya Abdul-Mateen II Talks With Entertainment Weekly About His Iteration of Morpheus

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Yahya Abdul-Mateen II has certainly been on the rise, with his role as Dr. Manhattan in the HBO Max series ‘Watchmen.’ He’s also starred along side Jason Momoa in 2018’s ‘Aquaman’ and will be reprising his role as Black Manta in ‘Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom,’ set to hit theaters 2022. Mateen recently sat down with Entertainment Weekly and spoke more in depth about his current project, highly anticipated, ‘The Matrix: Resurrections.’

Mateen will be playing an “iteration” of the character Morpheus from the original trilogy, previously played by Laurence Fishburne. Though, Yahya says, its not safe to assume he’s playing the exact same character from the previous trilogy.

JESSICA HENWICK, KEANU REEVES ,YAHYA ABDUL-MATEEN II [credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]

“It’s not really my job to try to duplicate or try to challenge that history, if anything, I step into it because I appreciate the history.”

Mateen has nothing but respect for the role of Morpheus and what Laurence Fishburne brought to the characters in the previous trilogy.

“Laurence already did what had to be done,” he says. “I think what the script provided was a new narrative and some new opportunities that did make room within the Matrix universe for a new Morpheus.”

Abdul-Mateen has to remain tight lipped about exactly what’s going on in the upcoming film, he did let on that we will be witnessing a “Different iteration” of his character.

“This is definitely a different iteration of the character. I play a character who’s definitely aware of the history of the Matrix [and] the history of Morpheus. What the viewers will come to understand is that there are many rules of the Matrix. Age, appearance, the things we identify as real, can be manipulated in that world. The Matrix is where anything is possible.”

Keanu Reeves’ Neo and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II’s Morpheus train in ‘The Matrix Resurrections.’ [credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]

Mateen says the latest installment into the Matrix universe will also deliver a message. But the message will be slightly different than previous incarnations. Keanu Reeves was quoted saying, this film is another call to wake up.

“Our film is so much more driven by the hope of what the world can be that it grounds it all in reality. Everybody’s so plugged in these days. I think for a lot of reasons, it’ll be a mind trip.”

‘The Matrix Resurrections’ hits theaters and HBO Max December 22 

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Brandon started BCactionMR.com in 2012, with the intent of publishing news he found exciting about upcoming and current events in the world of comic book, action and sci-fi movies. A year later, "BC" became a Verified Creator (Paid Writer) for Movie Pilot, a large fan site, dedicated to all things pop culture. [2013-2018] After Movie Pilot closed its doors, Brandon decided he wanted to give others the opportunity to continue writing and sharing their passion and excitement for entertainment news. We now have evolved into an ever-growing community of bloggers, writers and gamers who love to share our opinions with the world. We cover everything from pop culture, indie, horror, television and the most recent trailers to hit the internet. BCactionMR.com is dedicated to J.S.W. Thank you for planting the seed all those years ago. RIP Brother

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Reel Recommendations: Possession – One Restoration You Do Not Want To Miss

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One of my favorite elements in the horror genre is taking a contemporary story and somehow implementing the genre’s core elements. Take the film Cure (1997) directed by Kiyoshi Kurosawa; the film is about a detective who is investigating a series of grizzly attacks by a serial killer. On the film’s surface, it is your simple crime-thriller ala David Fincher’s Se7en (1995) or his 2007, Zodiac. However, throughout the film, the viewer gets inside of the mind of his victims in a psychological battle between light and dark; understanding the killer’s motivations and way of attack. Enough talk about Cure (1997), that is for another time.

I hold this element of the genre close to my creative heart because the genre does not always need a monster or killer or the loose, the genre is about set-up, execution, and the atmosphere in which those two elements listed are contained. If you are looking for more horror films like that, that are not about unstable detectives, look no further than Andrzej Żuławski’s Possession.

This 40-year-old lost film has recently been gaining a cult following and the film distributor Metrograph has graced film fans with a restoration. My thoughts on that are listed below the review.

Isabelle Adjani, Sam Neill @ Possession (Andrzej Żuławski, 1981

Possession is a film about how division; division of two people who seem to be at odds and have fallen out of love for one another amidst the middle of the Berlin Wall, a division of communication between a couple and the affair that has brought them down as well as a division of body and state. Possession is about the breaking point between a couple as they’re in the very early stages of a divorce. They both have simply fallen out of love with one another and have started sleeping with other people, mainly Isabelle Adjani’s Anna. As Sam Neil’s Mark understands the situation unfolds, the more angry and sickly he becomes. There are points where he will look like he has not eaten in days and looks incredibly pale-skinned. There is a moment throughout the first 25 minutes where Neil is having a seizure in a cold sweat.

While Possession is a body horror in terms of visual effects, its a body horror from the performances given. We see both of the films leads reach sadistic and stomach-churning when it ocmes to range. The first half being dedicated to Sam Neil’s perspective of the situation and how he is treating himself during this change, where he goes from calm to physically abusive. Then as the story unfolds, Żuławski pays more attention to Adjani’s Anna, as an audiences we are opening the curtain to what she has been up to when the camera is not focused on her. The camera work works in one takes with very abrupt takes in its editing. Żuławski wants everything to feel like one fluid motion rather than have multiple takes for one single scene. The subway scene in particular roughly has about two-three takes and you do not evne notice because of how hypnotized you are to Adjani’s otherworldly performance. I am treading lightly on the plot due ot the genius of this film is to go in knowing nothing.

Isabelle Adjani, Sam Neill @ Possession (Andrzej Żuławski, 1981

Possession is one of those horror films that were lost in time but recently have been gaining a resurgence through word of mouth and many clamoring for a Criterion blu-ray release, and for good reason. Possession includes some of the best performances I have ever witnessed with direction that is unpredictable and keeps the audience on the edge of their seats. If there is one restoration you should have eyes on it is this one.

Restoration Review

Possession not only is a wonderful film but is also one of the best restorations I have seen recently. Metrograph elevates the horror film and at times looks like it was made from the last decade. The stark blue color pallette shines due to how cold and emotionally distant the characters are. The sound design is wonderful, every whisper is heard and understood, every scream feels like a scare, every tension-building moment plays like gangbusters. This is one restoration you do not want to miss especially for cult-genre fans.

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Jessica Henwick Talks ‘The Matrix Resurrections’ Training, Filming Style and Covid

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With our return to the Matrix rapidly approaching, details about the upcoming Lana Wachowski film have been kept tight. What we do know, is that we will have most of the central cast from the original trilogy, surrounded by fresh new faces. With the likes of Neil Patrick Harris, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Jessica Henwick rounding out the group.

In a recent interview with Christina Radish at Collider, the matrix star who will play a character named Bugs, will dawn the white rabbit tattoo and awesome blue hair, spoke about the pressures of working with Keanu Reeves and the creativity of Director Lana Wachowski.

“That’s somewhere I felt pressure because those fights are so seminal [to The Matrix]. Those moments from the original have stayed in my head, so many of those fight beats, [so] that was really where I was intimidated going into it. I knew I had to be performing up here. You’re performing with Keanu. It’s John Wick. He knows what he’s doing. You can’t hold him back, in any way. I had to give it my all. I devoted myself to it. We trained pretty hard in the run-up and we kept training all the way through filming. When we were shut down for COVID and we went off three months, I still was at home training every day, even though we didn’t know if we were going back. When we got shut down for COVID, Lana said, ‘Well, maybe that’s it. Maybe we won’t come back and film the rest of it. Maybe the new Matrix will go down as this legendary film which incomplete, and no one will ever be able to see it. Maybe that’s what this is meant to be.’ And we were all going, ‘No, you have to finish the film.’ But she really did toy with the idea of just calling it quits… For me, even though I didn’t know whether we would come back, I couldn’t think about that, and so I trained throughout the entire break because I just had to focus. I just had to be positive and go, ‘No, we’re gonna go finish the film. We have to. This can’t be how my Matrix journey ends.”

Jessica Henwick – The Matrix Resurrections [credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]

 

Henwick, who will also be starring in the Adult Swim anime series Blade Runner: Black Lotus, went into more detail about Lana’s shooting style on set and having to be present at all times.

Jessica Henwick

“[Wachowski is] very creative, and she has a very, very strong vision. She doesn’t work like any of the directors I’ve worked with. She loves running takes, so we’ll often go 20 minutes without a single cut. And she doesn’t do the normal thing, which is, ‘Okay, let’s set up for shooting A side, and we’ll shoot the wide, the medium, the closeup, and then we can all move the lights so that we can shoot B side.’ Everyone had to be aware that it was 360 [degrees of coverage] at all times. She would stand next to the operator and she would be shooting. Keanu is speaking and she’s shooting. She’s handling the camera, zooming in on him, and then she would just turn, and suddenly the camera will be on you, even though you’re on the other side of the line. That’s how she shoots. It’s very much how she feels in the moment. It’s very instinctive for her. It’s fascinating to watch. I’ve never worked with a director who is going so much on a gut feeling.”

“I auditioned with her, so by the time I got to set, I already knew, ‘Okay, she’s gonna be like this.’ She’s gonna talk in the middle of your line. The things which might annoy you on another project, you just have to accept with her. You may be in the middle of your line and she’ll just turn the camera off of you because she decides, ‘Actually, I don’t wanna film you. I wanna film this for a second.’ She was like that in my audition process; I think she even pushed it more in the audition process, to see how I would react. If you can’t be flexible with a director like that, then there’s no point working together. You’re not gonna enjoy working together. She really wanted to make sure that every actor was just present and there, at all times, and ready to go.”

‘The Matrix Resurrections,’ hits theaters December 22, 2021

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SCREAM: ‘Ghostface Is Back’ In First Featurette

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GHOSTFACE IS BACK

FEATURING NEW FILM FOOTAGE AND SOUNDBITES FROM THE CAST & EXECUTIVE PRODUCER KEVIN WILLIAMSON
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Paramount Pictures and Spyglass Media Group have released a new featurette for Scream which highlights the legacy of the iconic Ghostface and also new and returning cast. The Identity of the masked slasher has certainly changed over the series but still retains the iconic voice and mask, and as you see in the featurette below this ghostly figure has emerged once again and I for one am sure that blood will indeed be shed.

Twenty-five years after a streak of brutal murders shocked the quiet town of Woodsboro, a new killer has donned the Ghostface mask and begins targeting a group of teenagers to resurrect secrets from the town’s deadly past. Neve Campbell (“Sidney Prescott”), Courteney Cox (“Gale Weathers”) and David Arquette (“Dewey Riley”) return to their iconic roles in Scream alongside Melissa Barrera, Kyle Gallner, Mason Gooding, Mikey Madison, Dylan Minnette, Jenna Ortega, Jack Quaid, Marley Shelton, Jasmin Savoy Brown, and Sonia Ammar.

The film’s producers are William Sherak, James Vanderbilt, and Paul Neinstein. The executive producers are Kevin Williamson, Chad Villella, Gary Barber, Peter Oillataguerre, Ron Lynch, Cathy Konrad, and Marianne Maddalena. It is written by James Vanderbilt and Guy Busick. Scream (2022), directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, arrives in theatres on January 14, 2022.

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