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No Suprises On Sony’s Directors Short List For HE-MAN Film

Posted on 11 January 2014 by Rich Drees

MastersOfTheUniverse

Sony is continuing to move forward on getting a big screen adaptation of the old 1980s toyline He-Man And The Masters Of The Universe and the first thing they are working on is getting someone to fill the director’s chair left empty now that reportedly Jon M. Chu has left the project.

Reportedly, Sony has been meeting with a number of directors including Joe Cornish (Attack the Block), Rian Johnson (Looper), Andy Muschietti (Mama), Kirk DeMicco & Chris Sanders (The Croods) and Phil Lord and Chris Miller (21 Jump Street).

Honestly, none of these names are all that surprising. They still have yet to score a big hit so they don’t have a high price tag attached to their services just yet, but are well known for delivering the goods. The only outliers on the list would be the teams of DeMicco and Sanders and Lord and Miller, who have more of a comedy background than one in genre films. Hopefully it is not an indicator that screenplay currently being rewritten by Terry Rossio leans more towards comedy than adventure fantasy.

Via SchmoesKnow.

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Matt Reeves Signs For Third PLANET OF THE APES Prequel

Posted on 08 January 2014 by Rich Drees

MattReevesHe may still be working to finish off Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes for this coming summer but what Matt Reeves has already done has given Twentieth Century Fox the impetus to sign the director on to head up the next installment of the studio’s prequel franchise.

Returning with Reeves will be Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes co-screenwriter Mark Bomback. Deadline is reporting that the third film is a priority for the studio and Reeves and Bomback will probably be diving right into work once everything with Dawn is finished off.

This is definitely a vote of confidence from the studio and one that makes me even more excited to see Dawn when it opens on July 11. However, my excitement is tempered by the fact that it appears that screenwriters Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver are not returning for the new film. Jaffa and Silver were the ones who first interested Fox in relaunching the Apes franchise, pitching the studio the film that became 2011′s Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes. The writers planned the film to be the first in a trilogy, which they got to expand on by supplying the early drafts of the screenplay for Dawn. Granted, the pair are currently working with James Cameron on polishing the script for Avatar 3, but their lack of participation here is a bit of a buzzkill.

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It’s Official: Gordon-Levitt Signs Onto SANDMAN

Posted on 16 December 2013 by William Gatevackes

JosephGordon-LevittThe world of the comic book movie is become much more fast-paced. When the rumor hit a few weeks ago that David Goyer was pitching a Sandman film to Warners with Joseph Gordon-Levitt attached, we thought that it would be years before heard anything more about it. Not so.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt has appeared to confirmed that he has signed on via his Twitter feed.

 

Deadline is reported earlier today that Joseph Gordon-Levitt was in the final stages of signing on to do the project, definitely as an actor, most likely as director as well. But first a script has to be written from Goyer’s treatment and before that happens, as writer has to be hired. I’m sure we’ll find out what Gordon-Levitt’s job duties on the film will be in the coming days.

Gordon-Levitt recently made his feature debut as writer and director with Don Jon, and I think he did fairly well. However, if Sandman is to be done right, it will be a far bigger undertaking. However, the fact that Neil Gaiman (he’s the @neilhimself in Gordon-Levitt’s Tweet) will be involved in some fashion certainly is reassuring. And I can totally see Gordon-Levitt in the role.

The Sandman is still one of DC/Vertigo’s most popular properties, still selling load of trade paper back collection now even after 17 years since the last issue of the regular series was published. And the concept has a lot of mainstream crossover appeal, meaning it is either the gateway into comic books for new readers or the one comic book non-collectors will admit to be reading. So it’s pretty much a no-brainer that Warners would want to get it up on the silver screen as soon as possible.

More on this situation as it develops.

UPDATE: Gordon-Levitt has said that he has signed on only as a producer…for now.

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Freddie Mercury Biopic Gets Star, Director

Posted on 10 December 2013 by William Gatevackes

whishaw mercuryIt looks like the long-in-the-works Freddie Mercury biopic has finally gained some forward momentum. Deadline is reporting that Ben Whishaw has been cast to play Mercury, and actor/director Dexter Fletcher (Wild Bill, Sunshine on Leith) has been hired to helm the film.

Whishaw has apparently received the official blessing from the surviving members of Queen, lack of which was the reason why Sasha Baron Cohen backed away from taking the role.

The film will focus on Mercury as a member of Queen, starting with the early days of the band and stopping at the triumphant comeback concert at Live Aid in 1985. The band has authorized the use of many of its songs in the film.

Production is slated to begin next year.

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Is Joe Cornish Still In Contention To Direct STAR TREK 3?

Posted on 09 December 2013 by Rich Drees

Joe-CornishAt the end of last week came news that Paramount had hired neophyte writers J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay to work with Roberto Orci on the screenplay for the studio’s third Star Trek film. Part of that story was the fact that JJ Abrams, who had successfully rebooted the franchise, would be unavailable to direct the third film as he would be busy with his duties on reviving the Star Wars franchise for Disney. But what seems to be not so clear is who will be directing the film.

Some sources, such as the Hollywood Reporter, stated that Attack The Block director would probably be the man behind the camera as he was “high on the wish list” of the studio.

But Variety reported that something different, that Cornish is no longer involved.

So what is the case? Both have decent sources, to the point where I am not really able to rank one of them over the other in terms of veracity. I think that we have to look at how quickly each outlet got their post online. The Reporter had it up exactly at 4 pm Pacific time on Friday while Variety had it 49 minutes later. Did Variety‘s reporter take the extra time to check on Cornish’s standing with the project? Perhaps. And with that slightly later publication time I suppose we can take Cornish’s non-involvement with the film as the current state of affairs. Which is a shame.

Paramount is hoping to get Star Trek 3 into theaters for the franchise’s 50th anniversary in 2016.

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Abrams Regrets Level Of Secrecy Around STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS

Posted on 02 December 2013 by Rich Drees

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In the lead up to last summer’s Star Trek Into Darkness, director J J Abrams was determined to keep much of the movie’s plot under wraps, even to the point where there was an active campaign to obscure information about the villain that Benedict Cumberbatch would be playing. But in hindsight, Abrams is thinking that all that secrecy was a bit too much and may have hurt the film and the audience’s reactions to it. As he explains to MTV -

The truth is I think it probably would have been smarter just to say upfront ‘This is who it is.’ It was only trying to preserve the fun of it, and it might have given more time to acclimate and accept that’s what the thing was… The truth is because it was so important to the studio that we not angle this thing for existing fans. If we said it was Khan, it would feel like you’ve really got to know what ‘Star Trek’ is about to see this movie. That would have been limiting. I can understand their argument to try to keep that quiet, but I do wonder if it would have seemed a little bit less like an attempt at deception if we had just come out with it.

Here is the entire video from MTV’s interview.

Personally, I regret Abrams’s choice to use Khan at all, seeing it as a mistake to go back to such an iconic Star Trek villain right after having given himself a blank slate to explore whole new stories in the just rebooted Star Trek universe. But he does have a point that trying to keep too much of a mystery around aspects of the film’s central plot will only have a short-term payoff during the first time that someone watches the film. For repeated viewings, it does nothing.

Additionally, though, keeping things too much under wraps may build expectations in fans, but those expectations may become too big to properly fill. And there were many hardcore fans who found themselves disappointed with Into Darkness.

Going forward I am sure we will see if Abrams has taken what he has learned here and will apply it to his next project, the upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII.

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Tarantino’s Next Film Will Be A Western

Posted on 27 November 2013 by Rich Drees

TarantinoWestern

Just earlier this week, I was thinking that we hadn’t heard much from Quentin Tarantino recently. It has been almost a year since the release of his last film, Django Unchained, and it struck me as a bit odd that we haven’t heard any news on what his next project might be.

The director broke that silence last night on NBC’s The Tonight Show while pimping the release of the graphic novel adaptation of Django Unchained. He revealed that the film he is currently writing will be another western. The video of the reveal is below, but here is the text of what he said –

I can’t talk that much about it, but I will say one thing. I haven’t told anyone about this publicly, but I will say the genre. It’s a western. It’s not a Django sequel, but it’s another Western. I had so much fun doing Django and I love westerns so much, that after I taught myself how to make one, it’s like “OK, now let me make another one now that I know what I’m doing.”

Previously, Tarantino has mentioned other projects he had been entertaining doing, such as the story of abolitionist John Brown or a sequel to his Inglorious Basterds which follows a group of black soldiers in World War Two called Killer Crow. However, this sounds more in line with a vague idea he mentioned of a western set in Australia.

Also in the interview, Tarantino touched on how his writing process has changed over the years.

It’s funny, in the last, like, five years, it’s kind of developed into something else. Before, what I would do is, normally if I had to write during the day I’d go out to a restaurant or to a bar, kinda write out in public and get the juices flowing that way. But at home I’d write at home all night long. That kind of changed around the time of Inglourious Basterds.

I started writing at home, starting at around ten in the morning, something like that, and I’d write until five or six or seven, whenever the muses leave you. That would be the work that I did for that day. Then afterwards, I’d go into my pool, and I keep my pool warm. You can take drugs, or you heat your pool — I heat my pool. I kinda soak, I do swim, I do laps, but in this case it’s more soaking. And so what I’m doing is, if I’ve just finished a scene, then I’m thinking about how I can make it better. Or if I’ve finished it, and it’s on to the next thing, then it’s on to what happens next. And I sit there and I think about it, and all these ideas come to me, dialogue, and I kinda work it out a little bit. Then I get out of the pool, and I make notes. But then I don’t do them. The next day, that’s my work.

I am intrigues by what Tarantino says about now knowing what he is doing in regards to making westerns. We’ll be following this one closely.

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Joe Wright To Direct New “Peter Pan” Adaptation

Posted on 11 November 2013 by Rich Drees

Joe-WrightHannah director Joe Wright has signed to direct Pan, a new variation on J. M. Barrie’s classic story.

Actor/writer (Ice Age: Continental Drift) Jason Fuchs is providing the screenplay, which Deadline states will center on “[a]n orphan… taken to the magical world of Neverland, where he becomes the savoir of the natives and leads a rebellion against the evil pirates.”

Wright’s an interesting choice, as during the press rounds for Hannah he stated that he was shooting for a fairy tale-type feel for the film. Your mileage may vary on his result, but this does feel as if it is definitely within his wheelhouse.

There’s no word as to whether this will definitely be Wright’s next project or if it will come after his previously mentioned adaptations of the fairy tale The Little Mermaid and Neil Gaiman’s novel The Ocean At The End Of The Lane currently in development.

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Are Mangold And Jackman Back For Another WOLVERINE?

Posted on 05 November 2013 by William Gatevackes

the-wolverine-james-mangold-hugh-jackmanRumors about Hugh Jackman being done with playing Wolverine might be just that, rumors, despite the fact it was Jackman himself spreading them.

Deadline is reporting that Fox is negotiating with The Wolverine director James Mangold to rejoin Jackman on another Wolverine film. The deal supposedly pertains to having Mangold work on the treatment for the next film, but one assumes that he’ll be invited back to direct if he’s still interested.

The article treats Jackman’s involvement as a fait accompli, but Jackman was doubting in involvement as the character past X-Men: Days of Future Past at this year’s Toronto Film Festival:

“It may be the last. By the way, it didn’t hit me until three weeks before the end [of shooting 'X-Men: Days of Future Past], because we promoted ‘The Wolverine’ and I came back on set with three weeks to go, and that’s when I went, ‘Well, who knows? Maybe there’s no more Wolverine. Maybe this is it. Who knows? Maybe. So I really made the most of those last few weeks. I enjoyed every time I put the claws on. I nicked everything off the set, so Halloween, come to me and I’ll hook you up. I keep saying it’s like two movies in one, but with the size of it it’s really three in one. It really is going to blow people away because of the story.”

While The Wolverine‘s $132 million and counting domestic gross looks quite underwhelming comparison to the film’s $120 million budget, it has made over $281 million overseas, making it the second highest grossing X-film to date. No wonder Fox wants another one.

No word on what the storyline will be, but I hope Mangold’s treatment for the sequel is more like the first 2/3  of The Wolverine and less like the final third.

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EVIL DEAD Remake Writer And Director No Longer Working On Sequel

Posted on 30 October 2013 by Rich Drees

Olds-Evil-Dead-Remake

Director Fede Alvarez and and his writing partner Rodo Sayagues had a monumental task in front of them when they signed on to remake Sam Raimi’s classic horror film Evil Dead. With a vocal fan base and a tagline that promised the original was the “ultimate experience in grueling horror,” they had a lot to live up to and for the most part they succeeded. Unfortunately, despite the film doing well enough at the box office to warrant a sequel, it looks as if these two won’t be the ones telling that next story.

Speaking with Gorosito TV (via DesdeHollywood and Bleeding Cool), Sayagues has confirmed that he and Alvarez are no longer working on the sequel. They still have plenty of other projects in the work, it is just the further struggles of Mia (Jane Levy) against the deadites isn’t going to be one of them.

I have to say that I am a disappointed by this news. Despite my initial misgivings, I found myself really liking the Evil Dead remake, and when I talked to Alvarez about the film at the time of its release, he seemed really stoked about doing more.

This does raise the question as to whether an Evil Dead remake sequel is still an active concern or has it been sidelined by Raimi’s reported return to the franchise for Army Of Darkness 2? We’ll see.

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