Universal Pictures Releases First Trailer for Penelope Cruz’s Female-Fronted Espionage Thriller “The 355”

Penélope Cruz is ready to demonstrate her intelligence

Universal Pictures has released the official trailer for the espionage thriller The 355, starring the 46-year-old Spanish Oscar-winning actress..

Penelope Cruz

In addition to Cruz, the female-fronted globetrotting actioner stars Jessica Chastain, Lupita Nyong’o, Penélope Cruz, Diane Kruger, Fan Bingbing, Sebastian Stan and Edgar Ramírez.

Universal still has plans to release the film on January 15 in the United States.

Simon Kinberg directs the story that kicks off when a top-secret weapon falls into mercenary hands. Wild card CIA agent Mason “Mace” Brown (Chastain) will need to join forces with rival badass German agent Marie (Kruger), former MI6 ally and cutting-edge computer specialist Khadijah (Nyong’o) and skilled Colombian psychologist Graciela (Cruz) on a lethal, breakneck mission to retrieve it, while also staying one-step ahead of a mysterious woman, Lin Mi Sheng (Fan) who is tracking their every move.

The action-packed trailer sees Chastain recruit her team of international special agents, who must bond against a common enemy. If they don’t stop them, “they’ll start World War III,” says Chastain’s Mace.

The picture came together during the Cannes Film Festival in 2018, where it was the hottest project in the market. The hope is to launch a franchise based on an idea by Chastain of a Bourne Identity-like thriller revolving around female spies from agencies around the world.

Shooting took place last summer in locations like Paris, London and Morocco — each of which figures lushly in the trailer above.

Theresa Rebeck and Kinberg wrote the script.

MGM Moves Release Date of “No Time to Die,” Starring Ana de Armas, to Easter 2021

Ana de Armas’ big Bond moment will have to wait…

MGM’s latest James Bond film No Time to Die, starring the 32-year-old Cuban-Spanish actress, is officially moving to April 2, Easter weekend, and vacating its November 20 release date.

Ana de Armas, No Time to Die

This puts the Bond film starring Daniel Craig on the same weekend with Universal Pictures’ F9

“MGM, Universal and Bond producers, Michael G Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, today announced the release of No Time To Die, the 25th film in the James Bond series, will be delayed until 2 April in order to be seen by a worldwide theatrical audience. We understand the delay will be disappointing to our fans but we now look forward to sharing No Time To Die next year,” said the studio in a statement.

MGM was the first studio to foresee how the coronavirus pandemic was going to stall exhibition, and jumped No Time to Die from its Easter weekend release date of April 10-12 to the Thanksgiving frame.

No Time to Die stands to make $1 billion worldwide, so the studio has pushed back the release date several times now in hopes of having it come out in an optimum, vibrant global marketplace.

de Armas will be making her debut in the film, portraying the character of Paloma, a CIA agent assisting Bond.

Luis Jose Lopez to Appear on CBS’ Military Drama Series “SEAL Team”

Luis Jose Lopez is joining the Team

The Dominican actor has booked a recurring role on the third season of CBS’ military drama series SEAL Team.

Luis Jose Lopez

Starring David BoreanazSEAL Team follows the professional and personal lives of the most elite unit of Navy SEALsas they train, plan and execute the most dangerous missions that our country can ask of them. 

Lopez will play Carlos Ramos, a CIAagent operating under a NOC (Non-Official Cover) who has been discovered/captured by the Venezuelan government. He’s being held captive and risks being moved from South America to Middle East. His previous television credits include For the People and the miniseries When We Rise, and in film he was seen in Jungle and American Sniper.

Zoe Saldana to Star in Fact-Based Thriller “Sabaya”

Zoe Saldana is ready to thrill…

The 41-year-old Puerto Rican and Dominican American actress will star in Sabaya, a fact-based thriller that Reed Morano will direct based on a William Monahan script about the unlikely circumstances that made possible a 2015 U.S. Special Forces raid that killed a top ISIS leader and started the downfall of the radical Islamic State.

Zoë Saldaña

Saldana will play a female CIAofficer who befriended a recently escaped ISIS sex slave, or “sabaya.” The 15-year-old Yazidi girl can neither read nor write, but as she works with the teen to piece together her harrowing odyssey out of Syria, the CIA officer finds that the abused girl has pinpointed the nerve center of the Caliphate. The subsequent dramatic raid on the site of the young woman’s captivity results in the capture of intelligence that would spell the end of the Islamic State.

The story comes from Spycraft Entertainment, a production company headed by Grant Verstandig and former CIA officers John Sipherand Jerry O’Shea, who work with retired members of the intelligence community to create and develop content based on their true stories. 

“It is an honor to be a part of the telling of this story,” said Saldana. “This young woman’s journey is one for the books, and I am beyond grateful we will get to immortalize it on the silver screen.”

Morano has called Sabaya “a larger than life epic but it’s also an intimate, raw portrait of a young girl’s determination and the bond that forms between these two women. I’ve not seen such a mind-blowing adventure that is simultaneously so emotionally transcendent, from these perspectives before. I’m thrilled to be telling this powerful story with the incredible Bill and Zoe.”

Monahan called Sabaya “the best material for an emotionally powerful theatrical war film that I have seen in ages and I don’t say that lightly. It’s a story of doing the right thing against desperate odds, and if you think about it, no film that’s any good is about anything else whatsoever. Sabaya is what the big screen is for, and this dream team we’ve got is all out for [it].”

Saldana’s previous credits include the Guardians of the Galaxy/ the Avengers franchise films, the Avatar franchise, and the Star Trek franchise films.

FX Renews Sergio Peris-Mencheta’s Drama “Snowfall” for Fourth Season

There’s more snowfall in Sergio Peris-Mencheta’s future… 

Nearly five episodes in to its third season, FX has ordered a fourth season of Snowfall, its acclaimed drama series about the start of the crack cocaine epidemic in Los Angeles, starring the 44-year-old Spanish actor. 

Sergio Peris-Mencheta

Created by John SingletonEric Amadioand Dave AndronSnowfall Season 4 will premiere on FX in 2020. 

The third season, currently airing, is set in the summer of 1984. Crack cocaine is spreading like wildfire through South Central Los Angeles, continuing its path of destruction and changing the culture forever. Police are waking up to this growing epidemic, and Sergeant Andre Wright (Marcus Henderson) has set his sights on budding Kingpin and next door neighbor Franklin Saint (Damson Idris) and his people. While local law enforcement fights to stem the tide, Teddy McDonald (Carter Hudson) and the CIA are working hard to make sure the flow of cocaine into LA doesn’t stop. To continue funding the war against communism in Central America, Teddy will need to find new routes into the United States using Gustavo “El Oso” Zapata (Peris-Mencheta) and what’s left of the Villanueva family. As the stakes and losses continue to mount our players truly begin to understand the destructive force they have set in motion and must reexamine their own motivations and the cost of continuing forward from here.

The series is produced by FX Productions.

Ana de Armas to Star in Bond 25 Film

There’s a special Bondin Ana de Armas’ future…

The producers of Bond 25 have revealed key cast and production details from Jamaica, the iconic location for previous Bond films including Dr. No and Live and Let Die.

Ana de Armas

Broadcasting live on Twitter, the production confirmed incoming cast including the 30-year-old Spanish/Cuban actress.

de Armas previously starred in another high-profile film, Blade Runner 2049, which earned her a Saturn Awardnomination for Best Supporting Actress.

In addition to de Armas, other cast members include Rami MalekLashana LynchBilly MagnussenDavid Dencik, and Dali Benssalah

Returning franchise cast members include Ralph FiennesLea Seydoux,Naomie HarrisJeffrey WrightRory Kinnearand Ben WhishawDaniel Craig returns as James Bond.

A title wasn’t revealed but producer Barbara Broccolisaid the film will start in Jamaica where “Bond is not on active service, he is enjoying himself. We’ve got quite a ride in store for him.” His peace is short-lived when his old friend Felix Leiter from theCIA turns up asking for help. The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist turns out to be far more treacherous than expected, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology.

The production has already shot in Norway and will head over to the UK’s Pinewood studio then onto Matera in Italy. The movie will be the first Bond to use IMAXcameras.

Cary Joji Fukunagais writer-director.  Malek is expected to portray the film’s villain. 

The film recently had a release date change from February 14 2020 to April 8 2020. Additional writers on the script were today confirmed as Neil PurvisRobert WadeScott Z Burnsand Fleabag‘s Phoebe Waller-Bridge.

MGM will release the film domestically through their United Artists Releasingbanner on April 8. It will go through Universal Pictures International and MGM in the UK and internationally from April 3, 2020.

Coral Peña Lands Recurring Role on NBC’s “The Enemy Within”

Coral Peña has found an Enemy

The Latina actress and 24: Legacy alumna has landeda recurring role opposite Morris Chestnutand Jennifer Carpenterin NBC’s The Enemy Within.

Coral Peña

From Gotham executive producer Ken Woodruff, Matt Corman, Chris Ordand Universal Television, the project was written and executive produced by Woodruff and with a pilot directed by Mark Pellington.

The Enemy Within is a fast-paced thriller set in the world of counterintelligence.

Peña will play Anna Cruz, an ambitiousCIAanalyst enlisted by FBISpecial Agent, Will Keaton (Chestnut) to assist in the hunt for a former Russian SVR agent turned rogue operative who’s responsible for the deaths of her fellow CIA officers. Cruz’s arrival tests the limits of the unprecedented partnership between Keaton and former CIA Deputy Director turned traitor, Erica Shepherd (Carpenter).

Peña was a series regular on Fox’s 24: Legacy opposite Corey Hawkinsand Miranda Otto and appeared recently in Steven Spielberg’s Oscar-nominated film The Post.

The Enemy Within is set for a midseason debut on NBC.

del Toro to Star in “Sicario” sequel, “Soldado”

Benicio del Toro is ready to soldier on…

The 49-year-old Puerto Rican actor will star in Soldado, the second installment of the drug war thriller that began with 2015’s Sicario.

Benicio del Toro

Hailing from Lionsgate and Black Label Media, the sequel focuses on Alejandro Gillick, the shadowy protagonist played by del Toro, and Josh Brolin’s CIA agent Matt Graver, who in the first film established themselves as hell bent on hunting down cartel kingpins, no matter what.

Soldado, which was scripted by Taylor Sheridan, does not include the FBI agent character played by Emily Blunt in Sicario.

In the film, Gillick and Graver concern themselves with what is being smuggled across the border between Mexico and the U.S. in the tunnels used to move drugs and illegal immigrants. Those tunnels also can be used to bring terrorists into the U.S.

Italian director Stefano Sollima is the front-runner to direct the second installment. Denis Villenueve directed the first film.

del Toro to Star in Cuban Mafia-Themed Film “The Corporation”

Benicio del Toro is joining the Cuban mafia…

The 49-year-old Puerto Rican-American actor will star in The Corporation, which takes place over the decades between the 1950s and 1980s in Miami and New York.

Benicio del Toro

Based on T.J. English’s yet-to-be-published book The Corporation: An Epic Story of the Cuban American Underworld, del Toro will play Jose Miguel Battle Sr., who leads the eponymous and hugely powerful Cuban mafia. Born in Havana, Battle escaped to the U.S. following the rise of Fidel Castro. Alongside his team of fellow Cubans, Battle was trained by the CIA so that he could fight in the 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion.

Despite his name, things didn’t go so well for Battle during the attempted invasion, as he was captured, which led to him being imprisoned inside a Cuban prison. Battle failed to find the light side during his incarceration, and, when he was released, he headed straight back to the U.S. where he set off to build a huge criminal empire alongside the same posse of men that he fought with. His empire revolved around drug trafficking, gambling, and, even murder, and made him one of the most powerful crime bosses in the US until his death in 2007.

The nonfiction book will be published in winter 2017 by William Morrow. It’s being called a Cuban version of The Godfather and American Gangster.

del Toro is coming off a sizzling performance in Sicario, and this is an opportunity to play another badass character.

Paramount Studios and Appian Way have the film rights.

Cuesta to Direct the Drama “Code Name Veil”

Michael Cuesta is ready to break the code…

The 51-year-old Latino film and television director will direct the drama Code Name Veil.

Michael Cuesta

The Matt Billingsly-scripted film is inspired by true events. It follows a rookie CIA agent who investigates the first terrorist attacks against America—the Embassy and Marine barracks bombings in Beirut in 1983. When his station chief and mentor is taken hostage, he must resort to desperate measures, unwittingly becoming part of the scandal that would become known as Iran-Contra. That subject played into Kill The Messenger, about how a newspaper journalist was smeared for reporting on the CIA’s role in the infiltration of crack cocaine into the U.S.

Cuesta most recently directed the Jeremy Renner-scripted Kill the Messenger. He also directed the pilot of Showtime’s Homeland and serves as the series’ executive producer.