Tommy Lee Jones stars in Columbia Pictures' action adventure comedy MEN IN BLACK 3. Photo By: Imageworks. Copyright: © 2012 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All rights reserved.
* Most external filmography links go to The Internet Movie Database.Home/Social Media Links
Men In Black III (2012)
Opened: 05/25/2012 Wide
|AMC Empire 25||05/25/2012 - 08/02/2012||70 days|
|AMC Deer Valley||05/25/2012 - 07/19/2012||56 days|
|Georgetown 14||05/25/2012 - 07/12/2012||49 days|
|AMC Loews Meth...||05/25/2012 - 07/12/2012||49 days|
|Showcase Cinem...||05/25/2012 - 07/02/2012||39 days|
|Columbia Park ...||05/25/2012 - 06/21/2012||28 days|
|Clearview Chel...||05/25/2012 - 06/21/2012||28 days|
|Arclight/Holly...||05/25/2012 - 06/21/2012||28 days|
|Embassy Cinema||05/25/2012 - 06/21/2012||28 days|
|CGV Cinemas||05/25/2012 - 06/21/2012||28 days|
|Fallbrook 7||05/25/2012 - 06/14/2012||21 days|
|NoHo 7||05/25/2012 - 06/14/2012||21 days|
|Claremont 5||05/25/2012 - 06/14/2012||21 days|
|The Landmark||05/25/2012 - 06/14/2012||21 days|
Trailer: Click for trailer
Rated: PG-13 for for sci-fi action violence, and brief suggestive content.
In Men in Black™ 3, Agents J (Will Smith) and K (Tommy Lee Jones) are back... in time. J has seen some inexplicable things in his 15 years with the Men in Black, but nothing, not even aliens, perplexes him as much as his wry, reticent partner. But when K's life and the fate of the planet are put at stake, Agent J will have to travel back in time to put things right. J discovers that there are secrets to the universe that K never told him -- secrets that will reveal themselves as he teams up with the young Agent K (Josh Brolin) to save his partner, the agency, and the future of humankind.
About the Film
"The Men in Black movies are about the relationship between J and K," says Will Smith, who returns to one of his signature and favorite roles, Agent J, in Columbia Pictures' Men in Black 3. "This movie brings that home -- it's about the power and origin of their relationship. It's actually an idea we've had for years -- we had the concept before the second movie -- but it needed time to mature. What we had to do was elevate the story, and the only way to do that is to go deeper, deeper into the characters, deeper into the revelations that the movie would reveal."
"The relationship between J and K has been both contentious and affectionate at the same time throughout the movies," says Tommy Lee Jones, who again dons the suit and shades to play Agent K.
It has been ten years since the Men in Black were last seen protecting the Earth from the scum of the universe, and since then, there has been rampant speculation about a third film -- but Smith says that it was always a given that there would be a third film. "We came to a point where we all felt that we had a fresh and compelling story that took the audience to a time and place they had not seen in this franchise," says Smith.
For his part, Will Smith was excited to put the black suit and shades on again. Agent J is one of his favorite characters and as he made his long-awaited return to the role there was nothing quite like getting into costume. "You can't beat the black suit," he says. "It's such powerful, iconic imagery. You put on the suit and the shades and it throws you into the mental space of the Men in Black. It's like a childhood fantasy -- you know things that the other people don't know and you've got the most important job in the world. The seven-year-old boy in me comes running out when I put the black suit on."
Tommy Lee Jones was similarly enthusiastic about playing the gruff Agent K. He says, "Any time you go to work with Will Smith is going to be a happy day, and Will and Barry together make it an even happier day. They are wonderful people to work with."
The story of Men In Black 3 takes the filmmakers back -- back to the characters' origins, back to the key moments of their relationship, to focus on the key elements that have kept them at arms' length from each other for 15 years -- and looked for ways to resolve the conflict. The answer came in sending Agent J back -- back in time.
"We wanted the movie to be both familiar and different," says Barry Sonnenfeld, who has taken the helm of all three Men In Black films. "What's familiar is the characters and premise of the Men in Black and who they are. We wanted to bring Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones back together again. But we also wanted something new and inventive, and that came in the time travel element."
"At the beginning of the movie, J and K are still partners -- but they haven't learned much about each other in all their time together," says producer Walter F. Parkes. "In fact, at the very beginning of the story, the character of Zed has recently died and K gives a eulogy that provides no information whatsoever about him. This despite the fact that Zed was supposedly his best friend for 45 years. It makes J think, after all these years, what do I really know about the guy sitting next to me? That is the foundation for our story, and it coincides with the escape of an alien, Boris the Animal, that K put away 40 years earlier, in 1969 -- and he's coming back for some kind of payback on K."
Some kind of payback, indeed: Boris jumps back in time to 1969 and kills K. No one in 2012 has any memory that K wasn't murdered 40 years earlier -- no one except J, who is wondering what happened to his partner. To save K, J follows Boris back into the past -- and as he does, he sees an opportunity to learn more about his partner. "J sees saving K as a great opportunity to learn secrets about K -- he thinks he'll find out why K is so grumpy and reserved," says Sonnenfeld. "But as it turns out, the young Agent K is open, friendly, and interested."
In 1969, Agent K is played by Josh Brolin, who gives a sly, smart performance as Young K that channels Jones' mannerisms and characterizations while also making the character his own.
"We shot the acts sequentially -- we had Tommy playing K in the first act, then Josh came in playing K for the second act and almost all of the third act, and then in the last week of shooting we got Tommy back," says Sonnenfeld. "What I found amazing was that I kept thinking I was directing one actor; the performances were so consistent that it was hard for me to tell where Tommy Lee Jones ended and Josh Brolin began. For me, it's not about Tommy playing K or Josh playing K. It's just K."
"I've seen the first film 45 or 50 times -- I'm not exaggerating," says Brolin. "I'm a huge fan of the chemistry between Tommy and Will. Tommy's voice has a cadence to it that's very specific to Men In Black -- it's very different from the way he speaks in life. I just listened to it and listened to it and listened to it until I started dreaming about it. I don't know if I got it, but my friends would tell me that I sounded like him. I'd go out to dinner, and I'd hear, 'You're ordering like Tommy.'"
Of course, even as the movie explores the characters' relationships, it isn't a heavy drama. It's Men In Black, and that meant it would deliver trippy Rick Baker aliens, cool gadgets, and big laughs. All of that adds up to an irresistible tone that isn't quite like any other film. Sonnenfeld says that the key to the tone -- the only way to make the movie really funny -- is for everyone to play it entirely straight. "I want the situations to be funny, but the performances to be real, so I don't want the actors trying to be funny," he explains. "I don't want the composer to think 'comedy,' because then the music will be comedy music. I don't even want the cinematographer or the lab that develops the film to think it's a comedy, because the next thing I know, it'll look too bright. If I can surround the absurd situation with something real, it'll be a great comedy."
The team behind the scenes includes seven-time Oscar®-winner (including one for his work on Men In Black) Rick Baker designing the aliens; five-time Oscar®-winner Ken Ralston and Jay Redd supervising the visual effects; Director of Photography Bill Pope, who shot the Matrix movies and Spider-Man™ 2 and 3; production designer Bo Welch, who creates not only the futuristic world of the Men in Black in 2012 but also the retro-futuristic world of 1969; Editor Don Zimmerman; music by Danny Elfman, the film's composer; and costume designer Mary Vogt, who dressed Messrs. Smith and Jones in their iconic black suits the first two times around as well.
According to Parkes, it was Baker's idea to have a little fun in his alien designs. "He came in one day and said, 'What if the aliens in 1969 were 1960s aliens, retro-futuristic aliens that reflected our collective memory of that time and a more innocent approach to sci-fi?' It was just such a charming idea, and everyone went for it."
"The aliens capture a texture, a wonderful sense of humor, and a clever inventiveness that lends itself to this world," says Smith.
The demands of the film required close coordination between Baker and Ralston -- each legends in their respective fields of make-up and visual effects who have known each other since their teenage years. "I was excited to be working with Ken," says Baker. "I thought, 'Now we can really do a nice marriage of our techniques.'" Knowing each other as well as they do, Baker and Ralston could work out whether make-up, animatronics, or CG provided the best solution to each design challenge on a case-by-case basis.
Bringing it all together is director Barry Sonnenfeld. Josh Brolin says, "You couldn't have Men In Black without Barry. He brings a style and energy to what he does that makes this franchise what it is. You couldn't ask for a more perfect choice to direct these movies. You watch him as he's directing a scene and he is so into it, viscerally into it."
"Barry has a very, very good visual sense -- I think because he used to be a DP," says Rick Baker. "But maybe his greatest skill as a director is to be open to the ideas of the people around him. He hires people that he believes in and knows are good, talented people -- and he genuinely wants their opinions about the work they are doing."