National Geographic Channel – Breakthrough is coming back. This week, National Geographic Channel announced season two of the TV series will debut in May.
From Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, the docuseries “shines a light on the world’s leading scientists and how their cutting-edge innovations and advancements will change our lives in the immediate future and beyond. Season two will feature Chris Pine, Aaron Eckhart, and JK Simmons as narrators.
The new season of Breakthrough is slated to premiere on May 2nd at 10 p.m. ET/PT.
Breakthrough: Predicting the Future Director: Shane Carruth and Kurt Sayenga || Narrator: Aaron Eckhart Premieres: Tuesday, May 30, at 10/9c One of mankind’s oldest fantasies is having the ability to see into the future. Once, we looked to seers like Nostradamus; now we look to statisticians like Nate Silver, editor-in-chief of FiveThirtyEight. Silver relies on data and a solid knowledge of probability – knowledge he gained from years of playing poker. But he may be the last of his breed. Increasingly, when we want to see the future, we turn to big data and computers powered by a new form of artificial intelligence called Deep Learning Neural Networks. This technology is quietly, but quickly, transforming how we live, work and think. To Bill Lapenta, the director of NOAA’s nine weather prediction centers, it’s a revolutionary tool in the never-ending quest to accurately forecast the weather. For Rutgers University, professor Joel Caplan and the Atlantic City Police Department, it’s the power behind “predictive policing” software that predicts what areas will become hot spots for crime. Deep Learning Neural Networks give Harvard University professor Pavlos Protopapas the ability to predict the path of every asteroid in space that could potentially hit the earth and wipe out the human race. But, warns Dr. Eric Siegel, for all of its potential for good, this technology can easily be turned against us, creating a world where your every move is calculated, and no mistake is forgiven.
Source: TV Series Finale
Miles Teller is proving to be an actor who specializes in roles that combine extreme effort and crippling excess. Aaron Eckhart, meanwhile, has become the kind of performer who can bring a well-worn specificity to grizzled supporting roles.
Combine those elements and you get “Bleed for This,” the latest film from Ben Younger (“Boiler Room”). Teller plays Vinny Pazienza, a boxer struggling to return to the ring after a debilitating neck injury. It’s a performance that showcases Teller’s physicality against the backdrop of a true-life story. As Pazienza’s coach, Kevin Rooney, Eckhart brings his ferocity to a role that requires a less obvious show of continual force.
Younger has said that “Bleed for This” is far from a movie solely for boxing purists; he also wanted to rope in audiences who don’t care about sports at all. It’s an admirable goal, but one that doesn’t work without the full commitment and contributions of the two men at the center.
Teller and Eckhart spoke with us at last year’s Toronto International Film Festival about letting Panzienza’s absurd recklessness and unrelenting drive inform each of their characters. For them, it was about protecting that spirit in the same way that Rooney looked out for his fighter.
AARON ECKHART PILOTING WAY INTO AWARDS RACE
Eckhart really knows what the word supporting is all about after this season. He has been justifiably praised for his work in two films in which he plays the quieter guy behind two remarkable men, in both Sully and Bleed For This.
In the former, he plays co-pilot Jeff Skiles who helped Sully Sullenberger steer to a safe landing on the Hudson River in that celebrated story of the hero pilot played by Tom Hanks. And in the latter he plays Kevin Rooney, the man behind the incredible, against-all-odds boxing comeback of Vinnie Pazienza played by Miles Teller.
In both he also plays real-life living people, but didn’t get the opportunity that the stars of those films did to spend much, if any, with the men he plays. Skiles was always on a transatlantic flight, so he only talked to him on the phone. Rooney has dementia, but Eckhart did talk with his son, as well as Pazienza himself, to get an idea of what he was like.
Whatever the levels of research, Eckhart is solid in both roles, the true definition if you ask me of what a supporting performance should be even if, as Eckhart notes, it can be “weird” doing movies about people who are actually living. It’s been an interesting experience for Eckhart to promote these two films simultaneously during the fall awards season, but a gratifying one. He launched both at the Telluride Film Festival over Labor Day weekend, where we first ran into each other and where he would jump from one film’s screening and Q&A to another one, running up and down Main Street.
Independent – Aaron Eckhart is recounting a tale that, you feel, he’ll be telling his grandchildren in years to come – the time he first met Clint Eastwood. He spotted the 86-year-old actor-director a few years ago at the Golden Globes. “He was surrounded by [Steven] Spielberg and Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie… I just made my way up to Clint, who doesn’t know me from a hole in the wall, and I said, ‘sir, I just hope to work with you one day.’ He looks at me, kinda like Dirty Harry, and he says, ‘yeah, we’ll see what’s shakin’.”
To be fair to Eckhart, he’s a tad more than “a hole in the wall”. His 20-year career has seen him directed by the likes of Sean Penn, in The Pledge (2001), Christopher Nolan in The Dark Knight (2008), and Brian De Palma The Black Dahlia (2006). But the 48-year-old can’t help but flush with the memory. “I was like, ‘oh fuck’. I was embarrassed, I was humiliated. I was in front of everybody. I walked away saying, ‘that’ll never happen’.” He takes a sip from his cup of tea. “And it happened.”
Eastwood’s Sully is one of two new movies Eckhart stars in. The other is Bleed For This, Ben Younger’s boxing drama. In both, he plays a real-life person. His character is Jeff Skiles, co-pilot on the infamous US Airways Flight 1549 – on 15 January 2009, the jet was forced to emergency-land on New York’s Hudson River after a flock of birds hit both engines shortly after take-off.
“Playing a real person, if they’re alive, is daunting – because they have to live with the results of your efforts,” says Eckhart, who stars alongside Tom Hanks – Hanks plays Chelsey ‘Sully’ Sullenberger, the pilot who heroically landed the plane. “There are some people on Earth who are only going to know Sully as Tom Hanks. And Jeff Skiles, certainly, as me. Now that’s a big responsibility. Jeff still flies. I want people to come up to Jeff and go, ‘hey, that was an awesome movie’.”