The Increasing Role Of Social Media In The World Of Online Casinos

Whether the business is big or small, social media networks can play a huge role in helping them develop. This is thanks to them being excellent for attracting new customers, keeping existing customers entertained and informed, marketing new products and services and providing the vital link between a business and its customer base. With billions of people regularly using platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, it’s no surprise businesses such as online casino brands are taking advantage of what social media has to offer.

For a start, engaging with customers these days is huge, especially on platforms such as Facebook. People who visit online casino sites they want to feel appreciated and not only that but they want the services on offer to be kept updated with fresh content. Through social media, it’s remarkably easy to inform customers and potential customers of the latest games, services and promotions on offer. Social media also allows reactions to be gauged accurately too through the use of likes and comments; which is invaluable to any successful service. It’s the ideal link between customers, both new and existing, and the business.

So apart from social media being great for marketing purposes it’s also a great way to actually get to know the customers too. When an online casino operator knows what a large part of their fan base wants from a slot game for example, they can set about ensuring that it accurately reflects their tastes as much as possible. It reduces a lot of risk involved when bringing fresh content to the table. Knowing what somebody likes beforehand is a great advantage and social media can help make this possible.

Keeping customers happy and interested is vital in the success of any business, be it online or offline. Online casinos, Unibet being a perfect example, are renowned for having promotions on for both new and existing customers and what better way to get the message out there than through the use of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram? It won’t just be members who take note either as special offers such as a triple deposit bonus will spread like wildfire on social media from person to person remarkably quickly.

Social media also allows for promotions, special offers and information to be presented to people in much more engaging ways through images and videos. Online casinos often utilize these methods well in order to communicate directly to people and as they will also attract more feedback than a generic Facebook post for example, they’re great tools to ascertain what customers like and dislike.

The role of social media has never been more important, especially for highly competitive businesses, as per seen in the online casino industry. It’s vital that customers are kept happy and are regularly engaged in the right ways and the likes of Facebook and Twitter make this a whole lot easier. With social media also being a hub for accurate feedback on the latest services and products, it’s a crucial tool when it comes to delivering the fresh content that people want and need.

Get Your Vote in For The 2016 Media Mikes Awards and Win Some Great Swag

2016 is coming to a close and you know what that means. It’s time to vote for the 4th Annual Media Mikes Awards. Once again you, the readers, help choose our winners in six categories, with the staff of Media Mikes deciding on others. And, once again, (10) lucky entrants will be randomly chosen to win some great swag.

All you have to do is pick your favorites in the following categories: Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress and Animated Feature. When you have your choices, just email them to MikeS@Mediamikes.com That’s all there is to it. Last year over 3,000 readers submitted their choices.

The voting period runs through Sunday, January 8th, with the winners being announced on January 15th.

Good luck!

Get Your Vote in For The 2015 Media Mikes Awards and Win a 2015 Movie Prize Package

2015 is almost over and once again it’s up to our staff and readers to decide who did it best in the world of film this year. And, once again, (10) lucky readers will win a nice selection of movie swag – T-shirts, DVDs, CDs, whatever we have in closet. This year readers can send in nominations for the following: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress and Best Animated Feature. Other awards will be decided by the staff of MediaMikes.com.

All you have to do is list your choices below. Or, if you prefer, you can send them to MikeS@mediamikes.com. One nominee per category, please. Voting ends on Sunday, January 3, with the winners announced on Monday, January 11. Good luck!

“Birdman” Dominates 2014 Media Mikes Awards

After two weeks of email and on-line submissions by the staff and readers of Media Mikes.com the winners of the 3rd Annual Media Mikes Awards have been announced.

“Birdman” led all films with four awards, including (2) for director and co-writer Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu. “The Grand Budapest Hotel” was chosen as the Best Film of the Year. Michael Keaton edged out Jake Gyllenhaal to win the Best Actor Award for his work in “Birdman” while Reese Witherspoon out-dueled Julianne Moore to take the Best Actress prize for “Wild.” Another tight battle saw “Big Hero 6” narrowly out-point “The Lego Movie” for the year’s Best Animated Feature.

In the supporting categories, the races were not even close, with Mark Ruffalo running away with the Best Supporting Actor prize for his work in “Foxcatcher” and Emma Stone doing the same in the Best Supporting Actress category for her role in “Birdman.”

In awards voted on by the staff, “Birdman” took home the Best Original Screenplay Award while “The Imitation Game” was honored as the year’s Best Adapted Screenplay. “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me” was chosen the year’s Best Documentary Feature. Composer Alexandre Desplat won the Best Original Score Award for his work on “The Imitation Game.”

THE COMPLETE LIST OF WINNERS:

BEST FILM – “The Grand Budapest Hotel”

BEST DIRECTOR – Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu – “Birdman”

BEST ACTOR – Michael Keaton – “Birdman”

BEST ACTRESS – Reese Witherspoon – “Wild”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR – Mark Ruffalo – “Foxcatcher”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS – Emma Stone – “Birdman”

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE – “Big Hero 6”

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY – Armando Bo, Alexander Dinelaris, Nicolas Giocabone and Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu – “Birdman”

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY – Graham Moore – “The Imitation Game”

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE – “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me”

BEST ORIGINAL MOTION PICTURE SCORE- Alexandre Desplat – “The Imitation Game”

The Nominees for the 2014 Media Mikes Awards are in!

After hundreds of on-line and email nominations from readers, the finalists
for the 3rd Annual Media Mikes Awards are in. The nominees are:

BEST PICTURE
“Birdman”
“Gone Girl”
“The Grand Budapest Hotel”
“Guardians of the Galaxy”
“The Imitation Game”

BEST DIRECTOR
Wes Anderson – “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu – “Birdman”
“Angelina Jolie – “Unbroken”
Richard Linklater – “Boyhood”
Rob Marshall – “Into theWoods”

BEST ACTOR
Bradley Cooper – “American Sniper”
Benedict Cumberbatch – “The Imitation Game”
Ralph Fiennes – “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
Jake Gyllenhaal – “Nightcrawler”
Michael Keaton – “Birdman”

BEST ACTRESS
Felicity Jones – “Theory of Everything”
Julianne Moore – “Still Alice”
Chloe Grace-Moritz – “If I Stay”
Rosamund Pike – “Gone Girl”
Reese Witherspoon – “Wild”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Robert Duvall – “The Judge”
Ethan Hawke – “Boyhood”
Edward Norton – “Birdman”
Mark Ruffalo – “Foxcatcher”
J.K. Simmons – “Whiplash”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Patricia Arquette – “Boyhood”
Keira Knightley – “The Imitation Game”
Emma Stone – “Birdman”
Tilda Swinton – “Snowpiercer”
Meryl Streep – “Into the Woods”

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE
“Big Hero 6”
“Book of Life”
“Boxtrolls”
“How to Train Your Dragon 2”
“The Lego Movie”

The winners will be announced during this coming week’s episode of our “Behind the Mikes” Podcast – available this Monday, January 26 – and will be posted here the next day. Thank you for everyone that sent in their nominations!

Media Mikes’ Music Wrap-Up for 2014

Another year in music has come and gone here at Media Mikes and that can really only mean one thing. It’s time for our annual year end wrap up where the writers here at the site get together to present our top 5 album releases of the year. We also like to take this time to thank all of our dedicated readers, press outlets and artists who make this site possible. Without all of your continued support we would not be able to do what we do. Here is to a safe and happy 2015. Now without further a due we present to you Media Mikes top 2014 music releases.

Mike Gencarelli: Site Owner
1.) The Amity Affliction- “Let the Ocean Take Me”
2.) Kontrust- “Explositive”
3.) Marketa Irglova- “Muna”
4.) Pink Floyd- “The Endless River”
5.) You+Me- “Rose Ave”

Adam Lawton: Music Editor
1.) Against Me!- “Transgender Dysphoria Blues”
2.) The Gaslight Anthem- “Get Hurt”
3.) Judas Priest- “Redeemer of Souls”
4.) Foo Fighters- “Sonic Highways”
5.) CJ Ramone- “Last Chance to Dance”

Jeremy Werner: Staff Writer
1.) Dog Fashion Disco- “Sweet Nothings”
2.) Mastadon- “Once More Round the Sun”
3.) Skindred- “Kill the Power”
4.) Weird Al Yankovic- “Mandatory Fun”
5.) Slipknot- “.5: The Gray Chapter”

Media Mikes’ 2014 Holiday Film Preview

As you just spent the last few days fighting those “Black Friday” crowds, making sure that for years to come your children will know that you paid $10.00 less than anyone else for their JAWS Lego set, why not set aside some family time and take in a movie?

This time of year not only brings jolly Saint Nick around but also a lot of what the studios deem their “prestige” films – the ones to remember come award time.  Of course, they occasionally sneak in a couple of stinkers as well.  Here is a list of both for you to plan your next cinema visit.  As usual, thanks to our friends at the Internet Movie Database for some synopsis information and, as always, remember that this list is not all-inclusive and that the opening dates are subject to change depending on the whims of the studios and where you live.  Enjoy!

 

DECEMBER 

ESCOBAR:  PARADISE LOST

Starring:  Benicio Del Toro, Josh Hutcherson

Directed by:  Andrea Di Stefano

While vacationing in Columbia, a young man meets the woman of his dreams and soon finds himself introduced to her uncle, the infamous drug dealer Pablo Escobar.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Not a lot of buzz on this film but Del Toro did win an Oscar for his Supporting work in “Traffic.”

 

STILL ALICE

Starring:  Julianne Moore, Kate Bosworth and Kristen Stewart

Directed by:  Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland

When Alice Howland (Moore), a noted linguistics professor, begins forgetting words she learns she is in the early stages of Alzheimer.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Moore, a four time nominee, is generating great word of mouth for a fifth nod.

 

TOP FIVE

Starring:  Chris Rock and Rosario Dawson

Directed by:  Chris Rock

A comedian tries to make it as a serious actor when his reality-TV star fiancé talks him into broadcasting their wedding on her TV show.  Rock, who also wrote the film, promises this film to carry the edge of his stand up.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Adam Sandler also appears but who am I to dream?

 

WILD

Starring:  Reese Witherspoon and Gaby Hoffman

Directed by:  Jean-Marc Vallee

A chronicle of one woman’s 1,100-mile solo hike undertaken as a way to recover from a recent catastrophe.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Like Julianne Moore, Witherspoon, who already has a Best Actress Oscar for her work in “Walk the Line,” is getting great word of mouth.  Director Vallee guided both Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto to Oscars last year in “Dallas Buyers Club” and earned a nomination himself for his editing of the film.

 

DECEMBER 12

DEMONIC

Starring:  Maria Bello and Frank Grillo

Directed by:  Will Canon

A police officer and a psychologist investigate the deaths of five people who were killed while trying to summon ghosts.  The story comes from James Wan (“Saw,” “Insidious,” “The Conjuring”) so hopefully this will be on the plus side of horror.

OSCAR CHANCES:  “Horror,” asks the Academy, “what is that?”

 

EXODUS:  GODS AND KINGS

Starring:  Christian Bale and Joel Edgerton

Directed by:  Ridley Scott

The defiant leader Moses (Bale) rises up against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses (Edgerton), setting 600,000 slaves on a monumental journey of escape from Egypt and its terrifying cycle of deadly plagues.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Bale has one Oscar (Best Supporting Actor for “The Fighter”) and a second nomination while director Scott has been nominated three times, including for “Gladiator.”  Look for a lot of technical nods.

 

INHERENT VICE

Starring:  Joaquin Phoenix and Josh Brolin

Directed by:  Paul Thomas Anderson

In 1970, drug-fueled Los Angeles detective Larry “Doc” Sportello (Phoenix) investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend.  Here’s a little trivia for you:  writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson’s production company is named Ghoulardi after the late night horror host his father, Ernie Anderson, used to portray on Cleveland television.  As a boy I loved Ghoulardi!

OSCAR CHANCES:  If Paul Thomas Anderson has made a bad film I’ve never seen it.  He and his casts are nomination magnets so look for plenty.

 

DECEMBER 17

THE HOBBIT:  THE BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES

Starring:  Martin Freeman and Cate Blanchett

Directed by:  Peter Jackson

The final episode of director Jackson’s “Hobbit” trilogy.  As he proved with the “Lord of the Rings” films, Jackson is a master storyteller and this last chapter should be amazing!

OSCAR CHANCES:  Technical across the board.

 

DECEMBER 19

ANNIE

Starring:  Quvenzhane Wallis and Jamie Foxx

Directed by:  Will Gluck

OK, the synopsis really has nothing to do with the Broadway musical except that Annie (Wallis) is an orphan and eventually she will sing “Tomorrow.”  This is the one film that I’m torn on.  I loved the original show – at one time it was so popular that when you went to audition for a musical you were told that you COULDN’T perform “Tomorrow” – so I’m trying to go in with blinders.  That fact that director Gluck only has a few PG-13 teen comedies on his resume, and that he helped produce the still horrible memory “About Last Night” remake makes me sad.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Young Miss Wallis remains the youngest Best Actress nominee EVER for her work in “Beasts of the Southern Wild” while Foxx not only has an Oscar for “Ray” but kicked ass in “Dreamgirls.”  I’m not looking for any here but hopefully I’ll be surprised.

 

THE GAMBLER

Starring:  Mark Walberg and Brie Larson

Directed by:  Rupert Wyatt

A literature college professor and high stakes gambler runs afoul of a loan shark and his bodyguard-like gangsters while he has an affair with one of his students.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Can’t see any.

 

TURNER

Starring:  Timothy Spall and Paul Jesson

Directed by:  Mike Leigh

An exploration of the last quarter century of the great, if eccentric, British painter J.M.W. Turner’s life.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Spall (probably best known as the band manager in “Rock Star” and Peter Pettigrew in the “Harry Potter” series, is getting huge word of mouth for his work here.  Writer/director Mike Leigh has seven previous nominations.

 

NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM:  SECRET OF THE TOMB

Starring:  Ben Stiller and Rebel Wilson

Directed by:  Shawn Levy

Larry (Stiller) spans the globe, uniting favorite and new characters while embarking on an epic quest to save the magic before it is gone forever.  The final film in the series sadly features the final performance of the great Mickey Rooney and one of the final performances of the beloved Robin Williams.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Technical?

 

DECEMBER 24

TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT

Starring:  Marion Cotillard

Directed by:  Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenn

Sandra, a young Belgian mother, discovers that her workmates have opted for a significant pay bonus, in exchange for her dismissal. She has only one weekend to convince her colleagues to give up their bonuses so that she can keep her job.

 

OSCAR CHANCES:  Cotillard is a past winner for “La Vie en Rose” and is always a threat to earn a nomination.

 

DECEMBER 25

AMERICAN SNIPER

Starring:  Bradley Cooper

Directed by:  Clint Eastwood

A Navy S.E.A.L. recounts his military career, which includes more than 150 confirmed kills.  Based on the life of the late Chris Kyle.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Everyone I’ve spoken to who has seen this predicts nods for Cooper, which would be his third year in a row, and Eastwood, who already has two directing Oscars on the shelf (“Unforgiven” and “Million Dollar Baby”).

 

BIG EYES

Starring:  Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz

Directed by:  Tim Burton

A drama centered on the awakening of the painter Margaret Keane, her phenomenal success in the 1950s, and the subsequent legal difficulties she had with her husband, who claimed credit for her works in the 1960s.  A true change of pace film for director Burton.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Waltz has two Supporting Actor awards (“Inglorious Basterds” and “Django Unchained”) while Adams has been nominated five times previously.

 

THE INTERVIEW

Starring:  Seth Rogen and James Franco

Directed by:  Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen

Dave Skylark (Franco) and his producer Aaron Rapoport (Rogen) run the popular celebrity tabloid TV show “Skylark Tonight.” When they discover that North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un is a fan of the show, they land an interview with him in an attempt to legitimize themselves as journalists.  This is the second film co-directed by Rogen and his writing partner Goldberg, after the very funny “This is the End.”

OSCAR CHANCES:  “Comedy,” asks the Academy, “what is that?”

 

INTO THE WOODS

Starring:  Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt and Johnny Depp

Directed by:  Rob Marshall

A witch (Streep) conspires to teach important lessons to various characters of popular children’s stories including Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk and Rapunzel.  Based on the Tony Award winning musical by the legendary Stephen Sondheim.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Did I mention Meryl Streep is in it?  Director Marshall helmed “Chicago” to the Best Picture Oscar in 2003.

 

SELMA

Starring:  David Oyelowo and Carmen Ejogo

Directed by:  Ava DuVernay

The film looks at the lives of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and President Lyndon B. Johnson as well as the turbulent civil rights marches of the 1960s.

OSCAR CHANCES:  A supporting cast of previous nominees (Tim Roth, Oprah Winfrey and Tom Wilkinson) and winner (Cuba Gooding, Jr) bode well for a possible nod.  Oyelowo was brilliant last year in “Lee Daniels’ The Butler.”

 

UNBROKEN

Starring:  Jack O’Connell and Jai Courtney

Directed by:  Angelina Jolie

A chronicle of the life of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner who was taken prisoner by Japanese forces during World War II.  As a long time follower of Lou Zamperini’s story this is one of my most anticipated films of the year.

OSCAR CHANCES:  The academy loves a good bio-film!

 

 

DECEMBER 31

A MOST VIOLENT YEAR

Starring:  Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain

Directed by:  J.C. Chandor

In New York City 1981, an ambitious immigrant fights to protect his business and family during the most dangerous year in the city’s history.

OSCAR CHANCES:  Both Isaac and Chastain are bright new stars in Hollywood.

Oscar Nominated, Composer of “Gravity”, Steven Price Thanks Media Mikes Readers for Honoring Him

Steven Price, whose original score for the film “Gravity” was voted the Best of 2013 by the staff and readers of Media Mikes.com wanted to share these comments with his fans:

“Thank you so much for this honour! I’m thrilled, especially as it comes from this site. I had such fun talking to your colleague earlier in the year, and am an avid reader of the site. Thank you so much for supporting the film, and my score. It’s truly appreciated.”

Next stop for Steven Price…the Oscars on March 2nd!

Media Mikes to Co-Sponsor Kansas City Sneak Peek at Upcoming Film “Swan Song”

Media Mikes has teamed up with CinemaKC and The Kansas City Film Critics Circle to present a special test screening of “Swan Song,” the newest film by Academy Award nominated filmmaker John D. Hancock.

Hancock, a Kansas City native, is best known for such films as “Bang the Drum Slowly,” “Let’s Scare Jessica to Death,” “Weeds” and “Prancer.”

The screening will take place on Thursday, January 30, beginning at 7:00 pm, with a Q&A with Hancock and screenwriter/co-star Dorothy Tristan afterwards.

Synopsis: Julie is a 13-year-old girl who comes to La Porte County, Indiana to live with her grandmother, Karen. Karen, a former star of stage and screen, wants desperately to connect with her granddaughter in a meaningful way and share her history. But the two of them—each stubborn in her own way—butt heads at every turn. Soon, Karen makes a remarkable discovery: Julie’s powerful, unique singing voice. Will the sudden discovery of Julie’s talent be enough to bring the two together and allow Karen to pass on her legacy?

SCREENLAND CROWN CENTER THEATRE,
Kansas City, Missouri

THURSDAY, JANUARY 30, 2014

PRE-SCREENING MIXER: 6PM

SCREENING: 7PM

ADMISSION: YOUR $10 DONATION SUPPORTS CINEMAKC

FOR TICKET INFORMATION CONTACT:
STEVEN FULLER 816-500-9498

Media Mikes Critics Choose the Years Best Films (and the Worse)

With voting almost over for the 2013 Media Mikes.com awards, the site’s main critics got together and chose their favorite films of the past year. And a few that weren’t anyone’s favorite. As always, it’s a rather diverse grouping of movies. Agree? Disagree? Let us know below!

Mike Gencarelli’s Top 5

FROZE
GRAVITY
THE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG
PACIFIC RIM
THE CONJURING

and

Worse 5
MOVIE 43
BYZANTIUM
AFTERSHOCK
BEAUTIFUL CREATURES
THE HOST

Lauren Damon’s Top 4
Lauren’s original list contained a film that she actually saw this year but will not be released until some time in 2014. Rather than possibly give a look at next year’s list, here are her top four:

12 YEARS A SLAVE
THE WORLD’S END
AMERICAN HUSTLE
INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS

Phillip Smith’s Top 5
CAPTAIN PHILLIPS
MANDELA
12 YEARS A SLAVE
AMERICAN HUSTLE
DALLAS BUYERS CLUB

Jeremy Werner’s Top 5
12 YEARS A SLAVE
THE WORLD’S END
GRAVITY
THE SPECTACULAR NOW
FRUITVALE STATION

and

Worse 5
MORTAL INSTRUMENTS: THE CITY OF BONES
WALKING WITH DINOSAURS
PERCY JACKSON: SEA OF MONSTERS
A GOOD DAY TO DIE HARD
ONLY GOD FORGIVES

Michael Smith’s Top 8
I couldn’t stop at five so I thought I’d do my five favorite mainstream titles as well as three more independent features.

THE WOLF OF WALL STREET
AMERICAN HUSTLE
THE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG
PRISONERS
THE CONJURING
AIN’T THEM BODIES SAINTS
THE WAY, WAY BACK
THE SAPPHIRES

and

Worse 5
THE HOST
CARRIE
OUT OF THE FURNACE
A PLACE BEYOND THE PINES
21 AND OVER

Media Mikes’ 25 Most Anticipated Films of 2014

Happy New Year movie lovers!! Who is excited for a great year of movies? We here at Media Mikes are very excited about the upcoming movies of 2014. We have complied a list of our 25 most anticipated films this year. They are listed alphabetical and include posters and trailers when available. Please feel free to chime in below in the comments and let us know what movies you looking forward to most this year.

“BIG EYES” is directed by Tim Burton and stars Amy Adams, Christoph Waltz, Danny Huston, Krysten Ritter, Jason Schwartzman and Terence Stamp. It is currently scheduled to be released in Late 2014.

Premise: A drama centered on the awakening of the painter Margaret Keane, her phenomenal success in the 1950s, and the subsequent legal difficulties she had with her husband, who claimed credit for her works in the 1960s.

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“BIG HERO 6” is a 3D computer-animated superhero film produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios and based on the Marvel Comics superhero team of the same name. The film will be directed by Don Hall and Chris Williams. “Big Hero 6” will also be the first Disney animated feature to feature Marvel characters since Disney acquired Marvel. It is currently scheduled to be released on November 7, 2014.

Premise: Set in a fictional metropolis called San Fransokyo (a portmanteau of San Francisco and Tokyo), Big Hero 6 will be centered on a young prodigy named Hiro Hamada and his self-created robot Baymax, both of whom uncover a criminal plot and must join a team of inexperienced crime fighters, including Wasabi No-Ginger, Honey Lemon, GoGo Tomago, and Fred.

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“THE BOXTROLLS” is the latest film from LAIKA, the company that has made wonderful stop-motion animated films like “Coraline”. It is based on the novel “Here Be Monsters!” by Alan Snow. The film is being directed by Graham Annable and Anthony Stacchi and stars Ben Kingsley, Simon Pegg, Elle Fanning, Isaac Hempstead-Wright, Toni Collette and Jared Harris. It is currently scheduled to be released on September 26, 2014.

Premise: The film tells the story of an orphaned boy named Eggs (Isaac Hempstead-Wright) who was raised by underground cave-dwelling trash collectors called the Boxtrolls. The Boxtrolls are targeted by an evil exterminator named Archibald Snatcher (Ben Kingsley), and Eggs has to save his friends from that evil exterminator.

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“CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER” is the sequel to 2011’s “Captain America: The First Avenger” and the ninth installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film was directed by Anthony and Joe Russo and features returning cast of Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Cobie Smulders, Hayley Atwell and Samuel L. Jackson, also on board Robert Redford and Emily VanCamp.

Premise: Two years after the events of The Avengers, Steve Rogers resides peacefully in Washington, D.C., struggling to adapt to contemporary society. However, after a S.H.I.E.L.D. compatriot is assailed, Steve becomes entangled in a mystery that may endanger the globe. Together with Natasha Romanoff, Captain America attempts to uncover the growing machination while fending off hired hit men. When the entire scheme is discovered, Captain America and the Black Widow must recruit the aid of the Falcon and soon encounter an unanticipated and powerful adversary — the Winter Soldier.

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“DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES” is the sequel to the 2011 film “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” picking up eight years after the events of the first film. It is directed by Matt Reeves and stars Andy Serkis, Gary Oldman, Jason Clarke, and Keri Russell. It is currently scheduled to be released on July 11, 2014.

Premise: Eight years after the events of the first film, a growing nation of genetically evolved apes led by Caesar is threatened by a band of human survivors of the devastating virus unleashed a decade earlier. They reach a fragile peace, but it proves short-lived, as both sides are brought to the brink of a war that will determine who will emerge as Earth’s dominant species.

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“DUMB AND DUMBER TO” is a sequel to the 1994 film “Dumb and Dumber” taking place 20 years after the film film. The film stars Jim Carrey, Jeff Daniels, Laurie Holden and Kathleen Turner and is again directed by Bobby Farrelly and Peter Farrelly. It is currently scheduled to be released on November 14, 2014.

Premise: Twenty years after their last adventure, good-hearted yet dimwitted best friends, Harry and Lloyd, head out in search for one of their long lost children in the hope of gaining a new kidney.

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“EDGE OF TOMORROW” is a science-fiction action film directed by Doug Liman and based on the Japanese light novel “All You Need Is Kill” by Hiroshi Sakurazaka, the film stars Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt. It is currently scheduled to be released in 3D and IMAX 3D on June 6, 2014.

Premise: Lt. Col. Bill Cage is an officer who has never seen a day of combat when he is unceremoniously dropped into what amounts to a suicide mission. Killed within minutes, Cage now finds himself inexplicably thrown into a time loop – forcing him to live out the same brutal combat over and over, fighting and dying again – and again. But with each battle, Cage becomes able to engage the adversaries with increasing skill, alongside Special Forces warrior Rita Vrataski. And, as Cage and Rita take the fight to the aliens, each repeated encounter gets them one step closer to defeating the enemy.

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“THE EXPENDABLES 3” is the third installment in “The Expendables” film series. It features returning cast members Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, and Arnold Schwarzenegger and new additions to the cast include Wesley Snipes, Antonio Banderas, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Kellan Lutz, Ronda Rousey, Victor Ortiz, and Glen Powell. It is currently scheduled to be released on August 15, 2014.

Premise: The mercenary group, The Expendables, led by Barney Ross, come face to face with the team’s co-founder Conrad Stonebanks. Ross was forced to kill Stonebanks after he became a ruthless arms trader, but Stonebanks survived and has now made it his mission to destroy The Expendables. Ross resorts to recruiting a new and younger generation of Expendables to help the team overcome his old adversary.

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“GODZILLA” a reboot of the Godzilla film franchise and timed to hit the 60th anniversary of the series. The film retells the origin of Godzilla in contemporary times as a “terrifying force of nature”. The film is directed by Gareth Edwards and stars Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Bryan Cranston, Juliette Binoche, David Strathairn, Sally Hawkins, and Ken Watanabe. It is currently scheduled to be released on May 16, 2014 in 2D and 3D.

Premise: An epic rebirth to Toho’s iconic Godzilla, this spectacular adventure pits the world’s most famous monster against malevolent creatures who, bolstered by humanity’s scientific arrogance, threaten our very existence

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“THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL” is directed by Wes Anderson and stars Ralph Fiennes as a hotel concierge who strikes up a friendship with a young employee at the hotel at which they work. Along with Fiennes, the film has an all-star cast including F. Murray Abraham, Mathieu Amalric, Adrien Brody, Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum, Jude Law, Harvey Keitel, Bill Murray, Edward Norton, Saoirse Ronan, Léa Seydoux, Jason Schwartzman, Tilda Swinton, Tom Wilkinson and Owen Wilson. It is currently scheduled to be released on March 7, 2014.

Premise: In 1920s Europe, a famed hotel concierge by the name of Gustave H. is bequeathed a painting called Boy With Apple after his one night stand, Madame D, is killed. Madame D’s son, Dmitri, vows revenge on Gustave by framing him for Madame D’s murder. Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy, and his love interest, Agatha, help Gustave hide Boy with Apple from Dmitri and the authorities

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“THE GREEN INFERNO” is a cannibal horror-thriller directed by Eli Roth and stars Lorenza Izzo, Ariel Levy, Sky Ferreira and Daryl Sabara. It is currently scheduled to be released on September 5, 2014

Premise: A group of student activists travel from New York City to the Amazon to save a dying tribe but crash in the jungle and are taken hostage by the very natives they protected.

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“GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY” is based on the Marvel Comics superhero team of the same name and is the tenth installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film is written and directed by James Gunn and stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Lee Pace, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Djimon Hounsou, John C. Reilly, Glenn Close and Benicio del Toro. It is currently scheduled to be released on August 1, 2014 in 3D.

Premise: In the far reaches of space, an American pilot named Peter Quill finds himself the object of a manhunt after stealing an orb coveted by the villainous Ronan. Quill is forced into an uneasy truce with a group of futuristic ex-cons including Gamora, Rocket Raccoon, Drax the Destroyer and Groot. But when Quill discovers the true power of the orb and the menace it poses to the cosmos, he must rally his ragtag rivals for a last, desperate stand — with the galaxy’s fate in the balance

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“THE HOBBIT: THERE AND BACK AGAIN” is the final film in the new trilogy from Peter Jackson.
Returning cast includes Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Benedict Cumberbatch,
James Nesbitt, Ken Stott, Evangeline Lilly, Lee Pace, Luke Evans and Orlando Bloom. It is currently scheduled to be released on December 17 2014.

Premise: The Company of Thorin has reached Smaug’s lair; but, can Bilbo and the Dwarves reclaim Erebor and the treasure? And, if so, can they hold on to it?

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“HOW TO CATCH A MONSTER” is a fantasy-neo-noir film written, produced and directed by Ryan Gosling, in his directorial debut. The film stars Christina Hendricks, Matt Smith (aka Doctor Who), Saoirse Ronan and Eva Mendes.

Premise: “How to Catch a Monster” weaves elements of fantasy noir, and suspense into a modern day fairytale. Set against the surreal dreamscape of a vanishing city, Billy, a single mother of two, is swept into a macabre and dark fantasy underworld while her teenage son, Bones, discovers a secret road leading to an underwater town. Both Billy and Bones must dive deep into the mystery, if their family is to survive.

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“HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2” is the sequel to the 2010 computer-animated film “How to Train Your Dragon” and the second in the trilogy. It stars the voices of Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, T.J. Miller, Kristen Wiig and Christopher Mintz-Plasse. It is currently scheduled to be released on June 13, 2014.

Premise: The thrilling second chapter of the epic How to Train Your Dragon” trilogy brings us back to the fantastical world of Hiccup and Toothless five years after the two have successfully united dragons and vikings on the island of Berk. While Astrid, Snoutlout and the rest of the gang are challenging each other to dragon races (the island’s new favorite contact sport), the now inseparable pair journey through the skies, charting unmapped territories and exploring new worlds. When one of their adventures leads to the discovery of a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace. Now, Hiccup and Toothless must unite to stand up for what they believe while recognizing that only together do they have the power to change the future of both men and dragons.


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“INTERSTELLAR” is a science fiction film directed by Christopher Nolan. It follows a team of space travelers who travel through a wormhole. It stars Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Bill Irwin, Ellen Burstyn and Michael Caine. It is currently scheduled to be released on November 7, 2014.

Premise: When a wormhole (which hypothetically can connect widely-separated regions of spacetime) is newly discovered, a team of explorers and scientists embark on a voyage through it to transcend previous limitations on human space travel

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“INTO THE WOODS” is a musical fantasy film produced by Walt Disney Pictures and directed by Rob Marshall, which is based on the Broadway musical by James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim. The film stars Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, James Corden, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine, Johnny Depp and Tracey Ullman. It is currently scheduled to be released on December 25, 2014.

Premise: Set in an intertwined world of various Grimm fables, when a Baker and his Wife learn they’ve been cursed childless by a Witch, they must embark into the woods to find the objects required to break the spell. What begins a lively irreverent fantasy musical eventually becomes a meaningful tale about responsibility, the problems that come
from wishes, and the legacy that we leave our children.

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“JUPITER ASCENDING” is an original science fiction epic adventure from filmmakers Lana and Andy Wachowski (The Matrix) and stars Channing Tatum, Mila Kunis and Sean Bean. It is currently scheduled to be released on July 18, 2014.

Premise: Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis) is an unlucky Russian immigrant who cleans toilets for a living. She encounters Caine (Channing Tatum), an interplanetary warrior whom the Queen of the Universe sent to kill Jupiter. Caine tells Jupiter that the stars were pointing to an extraordinary event on the night she was born, and that her DNA could mark her as the universe’s next leader.

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“MALEFICENT” is a dark fantasy film directed by Robert Stromberg and produced by Walt Disney Pictures. The film stars Angelina Jolie as the well-known Disney Villain character and Elle Fanning as Princess Aurora/Briar Rose aka the Sleeping Beauty. The film is both a prequel and a re-imagining of Walt Disney’s 1959 animated adaptation of “Sleeping Beauty” and tells the story from the perspective of the antagonist, Maleficent. It is currently scheduled to be released on May 30, 2014.

Premise: The “Sleeping Beauty” tale is told from the perspective of the villainous Maleficent and looks at the events that hardened her heart and drove her to curse young Princess Aurora.

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“MUPPETS MOST WANTED” is the sequel to 2011’s The Muppets and stars Ricky Gervais, Tina Fey and Ty Burrell along with the whole Muppets gang. The Muppets find themselves unwillingly involved in an international crime caper while on tour in Europe. It is currently scheduled to be released on March 21, 2014.

Premise: Disney’s “Muppets Most Wanted” takes the entire Muppets gang on a global tour, selling out grand theaters in some of Europe’s most exciting destinations, including Berlin, Madrid and London. But mayhem follows the Muppets overseas, as they find themselves unwittingly entangled in an international crime caper headed by Constantine—the World’s Number One Criminal and a dead ringer for Kermit—and his dastardly sidekick Dominic, aka Number Two.

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“SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR” is the sequel to the 2005 film “Sin City”. Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller are sharing the duty of directing.The film stars an ensemble cast including returning castmembers Jessica Alba, Rosario Dawson, Jaime King, Powers Boothe, Mickey Rourke, and Bruce Willis. Newcomers to the series include Eva Green, Josh Brolin, Jamie Chung, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Dennis Haysbert, Marton Csokas, Julia Garner, Juno Temple, Ray Liotta, Stacy Keach, Christopher Meloni, Lady Gaga, Jeremy Piven, and Crystal McCahill. It is currently scheduled to be released on August 22, 2014.

Premise: “A Dame to Kill For” is a mixture of two of Frank Miller’s Sin City stories. Dwight, this time played by Josh Brolin, is being hunted by Ava Lord, the only woman he’s ever loved.

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“TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES” is a reboot of the “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film series”, directed by Jonathan Liebesman and stars Megan Fox, Pete Ploszek, Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard, Alan Ritchson, Danny Woodburn, William Fichtner, Will Arnett and Whoopi Goldberg. It is currently scheduled to be released on August 8, 2014.

Premise: Aliens invade Earth and inadvertently spawn a quartet of mutated reptile warriors, the Ninja Turtles, who rise up against them to defend the world.

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“TRANSCENDENCE” is a science fiction thriller film that will mark the directorial debut of long-time cinematographer Wally Pfister. The film stars Johnny Depp, Morgan Freeman, Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Cillian Murphy, Cole Hauser, and Paul Bettany. It is currently scheduled to be released on April 17, 2014.

Premise: Dr. Will Caster is an artificial intelligence researcher who strives to create a machine that possesses sentience and collective intelligence. Extremists who oppose technological advancement target him, but their actions drive him toward his goal. Caster also wants to become part of the new technology, and his wife Evelyn and his best friend Max Waters, also researchers, question the wisdom of this drive. Caster’s goal to acquire knowledge becomes one to acquire power, and he seems to be unstoppable

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“THE WIND RISES” is a Japanese animated film written and directed by Studio Ghibli’s Hayao Miyazaki. In fact, this is his last film ever that he will be directing. I have seen this film already and it is no question one of my favorite Studio Ghibli films. The U.S. dub voice cast includes Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Martin Short, Stanley Tucci, Mandy Patinkin, William H. Macy, Werner Herzog, Mae Whitman, Jennifer Grey, Darren Criss and Elijah Wood. It is currently scheduled to be released on February 21, 2014.

Premise: A look at the life of Jiro Horikoshi, the man who designed Japanese fighter planes during World War II.

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“X-MEN: DAYS OF THE FUTURE PAST” is the seventh film in the X-Men film series and follows the 1981 “Uncanny X-Men” storyline “Days of Future Past” by Chris Claremont and John Byrne. It is Directed by Bryan Singer and stars an ensemble cast including Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Halle Berry, Ellen Page, Peter Dinklage, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Shawn Ashmore, Daniel Cudmore, Nicholas Hoult, Omar Sy, Booboo Stewart, Fan Bingbing, Adan Canto, Evan Peters, Josh Helman and Lucas Till. “Days of Future Past” acts as a sequel to both 2006’s X-Men: The Last Stand and 2011’s X-Men: First Class, as well as a follow-up to 2013’s The Wolverine. It is currently scheduled to be released on May 23, 2014 in 3D.

Premise: The X-Men ensemble fights a war for the survival of the species across two time periods in X-Men: Days of Future Past. The characters from the original X-Men film trilogy join forces with their younger selves from X-Men: First Class in a battle that must change the past – to save their future.

Media Mikes Heads to Radio in Kansas City and Florida

With the overwhelming success of the weekly “Behind the Mikes” Podcast, it’s only fitting that Media Mikes now represent themselves over the airwaves. This week listeners in Kansas City will get a chance to hear “Movie” Mike Smith as he discusses current and future trends in movie-going on the KMBZ Business Channel (1660 AM). He will appear on The Kansas City Power Lunch program, hosted by Krista Klaus, beginning at 11:45 a.m. (CST) this coming Wednesday, July 3rd.

On Saturday morning, July 6th, he’ll be heard on the inaugural broadcast of Dispatch Radio, which will be broadcast on the following stations in Central Florida: WTAN 1340 AM, WDCF 1350 AM and WZHR 1400 AM in the Clearwater, Lakeland, Zephyrhills and greater Tampa Bay area on the Tan Talk Radio Network. The program begins at 8:00 a.m. (EST). Smith will be a regular contributor to the program, offering reviews and commentary on new film releases.

Media Mikes to Co-Sponsor Kansas City Oscar Charity Benefit

It will be a movie lover’s dream come true when the Screenland Crossroads Theatre, ReelSmart Trivia, and MediaMikes.com present a benefit presentation of the 85th Annual Academy Awards on Sunday, February 24, 2013 at the Screenland Crossroads Theatre (1656 Washington Street, KCMO).

The event, which will feature a live presentation of the 85th Annual Academy Awards on the Big Screen, will benefit The Parent Project, an organization working to find a cure for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, the most common and fatal genetic disorder diagnosed in children.

Cost for the event is $20.00 per person, which includes hors d’oeuvres, popcorn & soda, and chances to win great prizes and celebrity autographed memorabilia. A cash bar will also be available. Doors open at 6:00 P.M.

For more information, call (816) 421-9700 or visit the following web sites: www.screenland.com, or www.reelsmarttrivia.com. For more information on The Parent Project, visit www.parentprojectmd.org.

Media Mikes' Most Anticipated Films of 2013

Happy New Year everyone! With the start of 2013 brings a whole new wave of amazing films coming out. There are some many great films in the cards this year, I had a very hard time picking out just 10.  So I don’t get yelled out for having “Star Trek Into the Darkness” on the bottom, these are in alphabetical order. With all the great movies arriving this year any movie fan is bound to be excited. I have posted a trailer for each film as well, if available.  Let me know what you think and what are your most anticipated films as well?! Enjoy!

UPDATE: 1-14-13 – “The Muppets 2” has been postponed till March 2014, so we have removed it from this list.

1. “Anchorman: The Legend Continues”
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Release Date: December 20, 2013
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The film is a sequel to the 2004 film “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy”. All original cast is returning including Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate, Paul Rudd, David Koechner, Steve Carell.

This film is being released perfectly for the holiday season next year.  The original has become a cult classic over the years and it is going to be EPIC!

2. “The Evil Dead”
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Release Date: April 12, 2013
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This is a remake of the 1981 cult-hit horror film that made the careers of actor Bruce Campbell and director Sam Raimi, who are also producing this. The film is written by Diablo Cody & Sam Raimi. It is being directed by first-timer Fede Alvarez picked out specifically by Raimi.

“Evil Dead” is a beloved film amongst its fans and many are nervous about this being made. But Bruce Campbell has stood behind this film saying “The remake’s gonna kick ass — you have my word”. Watch the trailer below and tell me this movie doesn’t look kick-ass.

3. “Frozen”
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Release Date: November 27, 2013
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“Frozen” is a new animated musical adaptation of “The Snow Queen”. It is being released by Walt Disney Animation Studios.

Original songs are being written and composed by Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez. The film stars the voices of Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel.

4. “Man of Steel”
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Release Date: June 14, 2013
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After “Superman Returns” didn’t really deliver, I am sure people were finished with the Kryptonian superhero. But with the vision of one of my favorite director’s Zack Snyder, this film has some real potential.

This is going to be reboot of the “Superman” film series and going back to the character’s origin story. The film stars Henry Cavill as Superman, Amy Adams as Lois Lane, and Michael Shannon as General Zod. Count me in for the IMAX 3D release!

5. “Monsters University”
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Release Date: June 21, 2013
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This prequel is set about ten years before the events of “Monsters, Inc.”. John Goodman returns as James P. “Sulley” Sullivan as does Billy Crystal as Mike Wazowski.

After the failure of the 3D release of the original “Monsters Inc.” this Christmas, I hope that fans are going to back this film because it looks amazing!

6. “Oblivion”
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Release Date: April 12, 2013
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This film is your to be quite amazing. It is from the director of “TRON: Legacy” and the producer of “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” and stars Tom Cruise.

“Oblivion” opens exclusively in IMAX on April 12, 2013, followed by its traditional release on April 19th.

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7. Oz: The Great And Powerful
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Release Date: March 8, 2013
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This is a prequel to both the L. Frank Baum’s 1900 novel “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” and the 1939 film “The Wizard of Oz”. It stars James Franco as Oscar Diggs aka The Wizard of Oz. It also stars Mila Kunis as Theodora, Michelle Williams as Glinda, and Rachel Weisz as Evanora.

It Sam Raimi beyond the helm, a $200 million dollar budget and Walt Disney behind them…count me in for this sure to be stunning adapation. I will be first in line an IMAX 3D screening!

8. Pacific Rim
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Release Date: July 12, 2013
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Guillermo del Toro directing a $200 million dollar film about giant robots battling against giant monsters. Holy Shit! Where do I sign up!? This will be the first film del Toro is directing since “Hellboy II” and it has been way too long!

The film stars Charlie Hunnam (“Sons of Anarchy”), Idris Elba (“Thor”) and Rinko Kikuchi (“Babel”). Also reunites Ron Perlman again for the seventh time, I believe, with del Toro. It is sure to be a big summer hit! Be sure to check it out in IMAX 3D!

9. Star Trek Into Darkness
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Release Date:  May 17, 2013
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Before 2012, I was not a big fan of “Star Trek” but I have become quite a big Trekkie over the last year. I thought at J.J. Abrams did an amazing job rebooting the series in 2009 with “Star Trek”.

“Star Trek Into Darkness” looks to amp everything up in a major way. Have you seen the trailer below. Oh boy! Can May come any sooner. This is sure to be one of the biggest grossing films of the year!

10. World War Z
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Release Date: June 21, 2013

Fans of AMC’s “The Walking Dead”? Can’t get enough of it? Well then “World War Z” is the answer for it.  It is going to be the ultimate zombie movie.  It is a huge $125+ million dollar budgeted post-apocalyptic horror film starring Brad Pitt.

It is based on Max Brooks’ best-selling novel “World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War”. If you are a fan of the book then you should be counting down the days for this, which had a long and hard road to the big-screen.

 

Media Mikes Names The Best of 2012

“Cloud Atlas” and “Lincoln” each took home two awards when the staff and readers of Meda Mikes.com held their end of the year voting. “Cloud Atlas” was named Best Film of 2012 while composers Reinhold Heil, Johnny Klimek and Tom Tykwer shared the award for Best Original Score for the same film. Tykwer also served as a co-writer and co-director of the film.

Steven Spielberg earned Best Director honors for his work on “Lincoln,” as did Daniel Day Lewis, who was named Best Actor for his portrayal of the title role. The winners are:

BEST FILM – “Cloud Atlas”

BEST DIRECTOR – Steven Spielberg, “Lincoln”

BEST ACTOR – Daniel Day Lewis, “Lincoln”

BEST ACTRESS – Helen Mirren, “Hitchcock”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR – Leonardo DiCaprio, “Django Unchained”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS – Anne Hathaway, “Les Miserables”

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM – “Wreck It Ralph”

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE – “Cloud Atlas”