Transcendence (2014)

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Transcendence wrote:
riddick-danish wrote:
Vader182 wrote:Do we know how well this is tracking?

While the lofty sci-fi premise is generating some curiosity, Transcendence is lacking the kind of buzz one would expect from a major release like this. It doesn't help that Depp's brand has taken a hit in recent years due to his involvement in a number of critical flops like The Lone Ranger, Dark Shadows and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. Ultimately, it would be surprising if this came close to last April's Oblivion ($89.1 million).
If it does Oblivion level in US then it won't be a big loss because this will certainly make big money in China and other regions so hopefully will make money.
People were not as excited about Oblivion as they are about Transcendence and it's got no big competition around the time it comes out so why wouldn't it do well? I think it will actually make its budget back domestically. It's gonna be huge overseas for sure, Esp in China.
Captain America opens tomorrow, and Spiderman a few weeks after. Audiences might just see those instead of running out to see what they view as a curiosity. You're wrong about Oblivion. There wasn't much buzz, but the marketing was everywhere. It was a tentpole release, and it was inescapable here in Chicago. I've seen barely anything for Transcendence anywhere. It'll do well overseas though, hopefully.


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Captain America is the kind of movie that all the people who want to see it are gonna see it in its opening weekend. Spidey opens 14 days after Transcendence gets released so there's enough time for it to do well.

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Then I hope the film will have a good word of mouth. That can certainly help.

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I saw trailer of this before Noah. It does look good and interesting. Some effects were nice too.

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Inside Johnny Depp's 'Transcendence' Trip to China

On a hectic, culturally rich swing through the Chinese capital, the global superstar plays guitar, does some sculpting, meets local artists and hypes his upcoming sci-fi thriller.

Earlier this week, actor Johnny Depp made his first trip to China, a busy and culturally rich two-day promotional tour of Beijing for his upcoming sci-fi thriller, Transcendence.

Depp's visit was hosted by Beijing-based film studio DMG Entertainment, which co-produced Transcendence with Alcon Entertainment. To introduce China to Depp and Depp to China, the Chinese studio arranged a slew of events tailored to the actor's idiosyncratic counter-culture persona, including a concert and jam session with Chinese rock star David Tao, a visit to Beijing's historic 798 arts district, where he did some sculpting with Chinese artist Ren Zhe, and a casual roundtable discussion with Chinese actors, fashion designers and DMG CEO Dan Mintz, held before an audience of students from the Beijing Film Academy. The studio also hosted a press conference for Chinese and international media at the Grand Hyatt in Beijing's Wangfujing district.

Some of the events were filmed and are being edited into a 30-minute TV special that will be broadcast across China by Zhejiang TV in the lead-up to simultaneous U.S. and China release of Transcendence on April 18.

"Much of the content was geared towards the audience understanding more of what the film is about and the science and technology behind it, as well as creating more relevancy for the film in China," said DMG president Chris Fenton. "Johnny had a personal agenda of learning and understanding more about China and its culture, and that was integrated into the program; but it was sincere -- he didn’t come to China just to say, 'I’m a star, look at me.' Chinese fans responded to that.

Transcendence stars Depp as a terminally ill scientist who downloads his mind into a computer, gaining powers beyond his wildest dreams. The film is said to explore the perhaps not-too-distant moment when computer intelligence surpasses the power of the human mind. It co-stars Rebecca Hall, Morgan Freeman, Kate Mara and Paul Bettany.

"My expectations were very high," Depp said at his first meet and greet event in Beijing, where he seemed to hug every Chinese person he came into contact with. "From the very first second, I was impressed. It's beautiful, the foliage is different, the styles of architecture are different."
Depp also let some personal news slip while in China, confirming his engagement to actress Amber Heard after months of speculation. The actor was spotted wearing a diamond engagement ring throughout most of his stay in Beijing, and referred to it on one occasion as a "chick's ring."
Asked by THR how he felt about his performance in Transcendence, he said “I don’t like to watch myself in my films and I stopped that a long time ago. And I don’t read anything about myself. I don’t want to be influenced by anything.”

On his first night in Beijing, Depp attended a red carpet event at a restored former factory in the 798 arts district. The party was hosted by popular TV personality Wu Zong Xian – occasionally described as China's version of Ryan Seacrest -- and attended by Chinese stars Ge You (Farewell My Concubine, Let the Bullets Fly) and Wu Xiu Bo (Finding Mr. Right). Chinese rockstar David Tao headlined the event and Depp joined him on guitar for a cover of the 90's Chinese rock classic "Yi Wu Suo You" ("Nothing to My Name" – a powerful anthem for China's younger generations, with some political overtones). Singaporean pop star JJ Lin also performed. The event was invite-only but Chinese fans swarmed the entrances.

The following day Mintz took Depp on a tour through the hutongs (the warren-like alleyways between Beijing's traditional low-slung courtyard residences) of the arts district, where they stopped at galleries and a record shop, and visited the studio of sculptor Ren Zhe, where Depp took in the artist's work and did some clay modeling. Later that evening he took part in a "House of Creativity" roundtable event, discussing the role of art, acting and craft in U.S. and Chinese society with veteran actor and director Zhang Guang Bei, fashion designer Guo Pei, singer Liu Jia, photographer Chen Man, and DMG's Mintz. The event took place before a live audience of Beijing Film Academy students and was taped for later broadcast in China.

While Depp's visit was more substantive than most Hollywood stopovers, he is just the latest in a line of top Hollywood celebrities to recently touch down in the world's second-largest movie market. Last week, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson and Samuel L. Jackson promoted Captain America: The Winter Soldier at a shopping mall in Beijing, followed the next day by The Amazing Spider-Man 2 stars Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone and Jamie Foxx.
As China's box office continues to boom – it expanded 30 percent in the first quarter of 2014 and is expected to reach $4.64 billion by year's end – Beijing is replacing London and Tokyo as the most important promotional destination for Hollywood talent.

When asked about the financial upside the Chinese market offers international stars such as himself, Depp shrugged off interest in the business side of filmmaking, saying: "China has a lot to offer Hollywood. There is a level of art, eons of culture here. We can learn a lot from each other."

“Thank you so much for the warm welcome to this amazing place," he later told the crowds. "You never get enough time." ... rip-693223

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Depp is on Letterman tonight, I'd say expect the first clip.

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He's also going to be on The Today Show tomrrow and Ellen and Jimmy Kimmel next week!

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Set in a not-too-distant future, TRANSCENDENCE explores the very real possibility that humans—in our attempts to create a better, more efficient, more self-sustaining world through technology—can go too far. For emotions are not always positive: doesn’t a machine that has the capacity for kindness also have the capacity for menace?

Wally Pfister, a renowned cinematographer making his feature directorial debut on the film, states, “I was struck by the power and the weight of the ideas in this story, which I think are very much on people’s minds right now.”

“Transcendence” proposes that we can achieve what’s been called singularity. Pfister comments, “As we define it for the film, singularity is basically the uploading of the human brain into a super computer: the duplication of every synapse, every neuron…every bit of activity in the brain goes into a machine, which then becomes sentient.”

The film seeks to exemplify the coercive nature of the machines we create and how they control us as a culture. It is a path one could argue we are already on, and the film endeavors to project where we could be in 10 or 20 years as revolutionary, exciting…and equally troubling.

Johnny Depp stars as the scientist who not only provides the breakthroughs to make singularity—transcendence—possible, but whose brain becomes its first test subject.

“What I really found intriguing about this story was the idea that one man with a brilliant mind, a simple guy who adores his wife and does the crossword puzzle every morning, is able to take his expertise to the point where ego, power and passion could ultimately evolve him into something of a mechanical god.”

“Imagine your brain suddenly being able to connect to the Internet, to have access to every bit of information there—financial, medical, political…” Pfister posits. “What would you do with that kind of knowledge, that kind of ultimate power? Would you use it for the greater good, or your own gain, or something else entirely? This film gives moviegoers a chance to see the possibilities and wonder if it’s a choice they’ll ever have to face.”

The filmmakers and cast reflect that the movie poses some profound questions within its sci-fi storyline, and raises some thought-provoking scenarios about the effects that advancing, evolving technologies might have on our culture and on us as individuals.

“People have been fighting wars over ‘my god is better than your god’ for thousands of years,” Depp says. “In the 21st century, I think it’s appropriate to look at the way human beings worship technology and what that could mean for our future. Whether you’re on the side of technology or ecology, a pacifist or an extremist, most people have very definite opinions, and the question of how far we should allow our dependence on computers to go is a question that needs to be asked.”

Pfister summarizes, “According to the experts, artificial intelligence of the sort we present in ‘Transcendence’ is coming, like it or not. What I wanted to do with the film is give people a peek into one direction our world could take in the coming decades, and engage them in an emotional, moral and intellectual debate about this very timely topic in a way that is both thought-provoking and entertaining.” ... hnny-depp/

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They showed a new clip in Depp's Letterman interview

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