Category: The Mummy

Press: ‘The Mummy’ Brings a Crypt Full of Special Features With Its Blu-Ray Release

POP CULTURE – The first film in Universal Pictures’ “Dark Universe” slate of remakes, The Mummy, will be available for digital download on August 22 and on Blu-ray and DVD September 12. For those of you who are fans of a film’s special features, you’re in luck, because The Mummy will be packed with plenty of goodies.

 

 

The film’s special features are as follows:

  • Deleted and Extended Scenes
  • Cruise & Kurtzman: A Conversation Rooted in Reality – Tom Cruise and Alex Kurtzman discuss the making of The Mummy.
  • Rooted in Reality – Filmmakers and cast reveal how they broke away from old tropes and traditions to create a dynamic and realistic 21st century monster movie.
  • Life in Zero-G: Creating the Plane Crash – Watch Tom Cruise, Annabelle Wallis, and the crew shoot the incredible plane sequence.
  • Meet Ahmanet – Sofia Boutella shares the excitement of reinventing a monster icon.
  • Cruise in Action – A behind-the-scenes look at Tom Cruise’s most memorable Mummy stunts.
  • Becoming Jekyll and Hyde – Find out how the casting of Russell Crowe brought a bold new dimension to the roles of Jekyll and Hyde.
  • Choreographed Chaos – Watch as cast and filmmakers create an epic outdoors clash between ancient and modern worlds.
  • Nick Morton: In Search of a Soul – Tom Cruise describes what drew him to play a man seemingly without a soul.
  • Ahmanet Reborn Animated Graphic Novel – Witness Ahmanet’s descent into the monstrous underworld as she is reborn into the Goddess of Chaos and Wrath.
  • Feature Commentary with director and producer Alex Kurtzman and cast members Sofia Boutella, Annabelle Wallis, and Jake Johnson

 

Gallery: Missing “The Mummy” Press Tour Events

I missed these three events and I just got them.

 

   
 

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Press: ‘All Americans think they are Irish. Right?’

THE IRISH TIMESThe live-wire Algerian actor on dancing with Madonna and channelling Boris Karloff

 

 

“Ireland is beautiful. Though I suppose it rains all the time,” Sofia Boutella says. “I drove to Kerry on the wrong side of the road for the first time. I thought I was going to have an accident with the sheeps. I was terrified. Why the hell do sheeps go in the f***ing road like this? Aren’t they told?”

 

Today’s younger movie stars tend to be well-schooled. They know what to say and how to say it. But you don’t meet that many who swell with character and eccentricity. Boutella looks to be an exception. Born in 1982, the Algerian actor is, I suppose, not that young any more, but, after an initial career as a successful dancer, she is only now making louder noises in mainstream film. She was great as an alien scavenger in Star Trek Beyond. She was super in the recent Irish three-hander Tiger Raid. Now, opposite a breathless Tom Cruise, she plays the title character in Universal’s latest disinterment of The Mummy.

 

It’s a good role for an ex-dancer. There’s a lot of feline writhing and demonic glowering. Those hours hoofing with Madonna on the Confessions tour didn’t go to waste.

 

“Thank you. Yes, it was physical,” she says. “She’s never been pharaoh, but I think she’s carrying herself with some sort of pride that I wanted to find. I researched ancient mythology . . . ”

 

And she’s off. Boutella talks as if speaking is about to be abolished and she must enjoy the chatter while she can. She went back and watched the 1932 version of The Mummy with Boris Karloff to get a few tips. She initially turned down the role, but, after devising a more offbeat villain, talked herself back into it.

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Press: Sofia Boutella Talks Dressing for the Red Carpet and Working with Tom Cruise

 

VOGUE – Sofia Boutella may be the red carpet’s most exciting new face. Set to storm theaters this weekend in the blockbuster reboot of The Mummy franchise, Boutella has made waves during her first global press tour in designer looks that showcase her dancer’s physique and willingness to take a fashion risks. Whether arriving at the Madrid premiere in silver Miu Miu last month, stunning fans in a crimson Valentino in Mexico City on Monday, or taking to the red carpet in Taiwan wearing custom Prada, Boutella has pulled off a range of arresting looks in a short period of time.

Making a stop in New York last night at Saks Fifth Avenue’s party in honor of its window display featuring the movie’s costumes, Boutella continued her winning streak in a sequined Rodarte cocktail dress. Joined by co-star and recent Emmy-winner Courtney B. Vance and director Alex Kurtzman, she offered a preview of the dramatic looks she wore onscreen and shared her thoughts on getting glamorous with the whole world watching. Here, her take on why she’s a tomboy at heart and what it was like to work with her leading man, Tom Cruise.

 

On the creation of The Mummy’s costumes

 

“I love the process of how the costumes were made. I remember putting on the drapey mummy costume and being so impressed. It is basically just these squares of silk with different patterns and prints on them. There was a stylist on set with us who was just wrapping them around me, creating shapes as she went and trying things out. [Afterwards,] we decided which one we were going to use based on what she had done. It was interesting just to watch, to get into the costumes, and do the multiple makeup tests.”

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Press: How Sofia Boutella Became the Mummy, in 4 Not-So-Easy Steps

 

VULTURE – “We constantly transform ourselves emotionally, so why not do it physically?” asks Sofia Boutella, who has been making a recent habit of blockbuster metamorphoses. After a big-screen breakthrough in 2015’s Kingsman: The Secret Service, where she popped as a henchwoman with blades for legs, Boutella slathered herself in striking white makeup for last year’s Star Trek Beyond to play the curious alien Jaylah. She made herself over once again this week for the new big-screen reboot of The Mummy, where the 35-year-old Algerian actress has the title role opposite Tom Cruise. “It’s a part of the job, and I’m embracing it,” Boutella told Vulture. Here’s how she made her mummy come to undead life.

 

Look for the connection

 

When The Mummy director Alex Kurztman first sent Boutella the script for his reboot, she wasn’t convinced. “I remember reading it and I thought, Uh, no, I’m not doing this,” laughs Boutella. “The first script I read was a work in progress, a template just to start off preproduction, and I was afraid to just play a monster who walks around town scaring people.”

 

After Kurtzman sat down with Boutella to talk over the role, it started to expand. No longer just a mostly mute bogeywoman, this version of the mummy has royal lineage and a dark backstory: Born Princess Ahmanet in ancient Egypt, the character is supposed to inherit an entire kingdom until her father sires a son. Robbed of what she feels is her birthright, Ahmanet pacts with the god Set to kill her family and, once unleashed in the present day, rain down even more destruction.

 

“I had to empathize with her, and I wanted to humanize her,” says Boutella. “The beauty of the original monster movies is that you were able to relate to every single character, or even to treat their monstrosity as an emotional metaphor.” So even though Ahmanet chooses an evil path, Boutella sees those supernatural enhancements more like a protective shell: “It’s about closing yourself off from the people who were supposed to love you,” she says. “If you’ve ever been hurt to that extent, it’s hard to come back from.”

 

Move like a mummy

 

A former dancer, Boutella spends a lot of time pondering her character’s movement. “I think people can tell you a lot about themselves before they even start talking, just by how they sit or how they walk,” she says. “Finding the physicality with Ahmanet was very important. I want to show her strength and power through her body.”

 

So yes, Ahmanet may move with the same sort of stiff purpose you’d associate with other big-screen renditions of the mummy, but Boutella gives that deliberate pace a more regal bearing: “She carries herself as royalty, even more so after she’s been denied.”

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Press: What Are Those Letters On ‘The Mummy’?

 

HOLLYWOOD REPORTER – An undead monster is coming back to life this week.

 

The Mummy, set to bow Friday, has Nick Morton (Tom Cruise) finding what he believes is an ancient tomb, but later learns is actually a prison, and awakening an ancient princess, Ahmanet (Sofia Boutella), in the process. As the Mummy, Boutella is covered in an scroll’s worth of ancient runic letters from head to toe, a painstaking process that required hours to complete each time, according to makeup artist Lizzie Yianni-Georgiou.

 

“Her look took about three and a half hours,” Yianni-Georgiou, whose film credits include Guardians of the Galaxy and Notting Hill, tells The Hollywood Reporter. And that was an improvement. “When we first developed it, it was five and a half hours of makeup and hair with five people.”

 

The writing on Ahmanet’s body comes from the ancient Egyptian funerary text Book of the Dead and “the incantation asking the dead to come and help her,” explains the makeup artist of the lines of symbols running from Ahmanet’s face down to her legs and feet. Yianni-Georgiou used the MAC Penultimate Eye Liner as a stylus to create the prominent black writing, marks and lines.

 

For inspiration, the makeup artist studied mummies in museums and followed the backstories included in the script. “I had to take into consideration the stories that [director] Alex Kurtzman and the other guys had written to develop her and bring her to life.” (Or undeath, as the case may be.)

 

Boutella’s character doesn’t always look so terrifying in the film, however.

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Press: Sofia Boutella says her ‘Mummy’ is ‘the definition of a feminist’

 

USA TODAY – Sofia Boutella had a nightmare day shooting scenes for The Mummy in which her Princess Ahmanet is dealt tough justice, ancient Egypt-style, for killing her pharaoh dad and baby brother. She’s entombed alive in a sarcophagus.

 

Boutella’s eyes popped wide through holes in the head-to-toe mummification bandages as she was placed into the stone coffin.

 

“There was a lot of fear, I didn’t need much acting to look frightened,” recalls Boutella, whose first language is French, speaking by phone. “It was weird, I felt really dispowered. I don’t know if that word exists, did I just make that up?”

 

“Dispower” is not a concept the 35-year-old Algerian-born actress dwells on as the title star of The Mummy (in theaters Thursday night). Boutella’s Ahmanet is the force putting fear into London and Tom Cruise’s soldier of fortune Nick Morton when he accidentally awakens her after 5,000 years.

 

Ahmanet’s impressive arrival thrusts Boutella’s Mummy into a mighty woman weekend at the box office along with Gal Gadot’s blockbuster Wonder Woman, which dominated with $100 million-plus last weekend. Both characters follow wildly different screen paths, but are owned entirely by powerful female performances.

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Video: “The Mummy” Cast at AOL Build in NYC

Gallery: “The Mummy” Premiere – New York City

Here’s the first batch of pictures from this event. I’ll add more as they appear!

 

 
 

 

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Press: Sofia Boutella on breathing new life into a classic monster

She stars alongside Tom Cruise in the first instalment of Universal’s planned Dark Universe, revisiting the studio’s litany of iconic creatures of the night

 

INDEPENDENT – A monster is never just that, a monster.

 

Dracula, Frankenstein, The Wolf Man; whatever ghouls or goblins may stalk the pages of books or the edges of silver screens, they represent a nightmare far more primitive and deep-stirring than their initial frights.

 

The fear that death is only illusionary, the fear of science and the perils of playing God, or of the beast that dwells within all mankind; each of them distilled into mythical beings who give those terrors a name and a face.

 

“It’s not just a monster walking around,” Sofia Boutella states. “If you look at the original ones, they’re interesting, profound metaphors.” She plays the titular creature of Universal’s new take on The Mummy, now transformed from the lovesick priest Boris Karloff played in the 1932 original and into the vengeful princess Ahmanet, battling against Tom Cruise’s hero Nick Morton.

 

Boutella describes a distinctly cinephilic childhood, one that saw her readily absorb the original Mummy and other monster offerings, and her love for and knowledge of this world is deeply self-evident.

 

She recounts to me how early cinematic versions of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, namely the 1931 film starring Fredric March and its 1941 remake, saw the character’s ape-like transformation driven by an inability to consume his feelings towards the woman he loved due to the limitations of his era’s moralistic society. “Isn’t that brilliant?” she concludes with. “Every single one of them has an identity that’s special to them.”

 

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde make their return in 2017’s The Mummy, as played by Russell Crowe. He may no longer be lusting over unattainable women, but that primitive drive still remains; it’s a respect for the original material that Boutella, as a fan, was ardent to keep intact.

 

“When I sat down with Alex [Kurtzman, the film’s director], I told him, how are you going to do this? What are your feelings and thoughts? He wanted to give homage to the original ones, and still adapt it to modern times and adapt it to the technology we have now. That’s what made me fall the most in love with it, because I love the original ones.”

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