Posted on 14 May 2015 by Rich Drees
War Of The Planet On The Apes.
An unsurprising title as the trajectory of the relaunched Planet Of The Apes franchise has been towards an epic and global conflict between humans and the rising population of intelligent apes. It was even foreshadowed in the the closing moments of 2014’s Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes when Caesar (Andy Serkis), the first of the genetically modified apes and their leader who has tried to keep them isolated from the remains of a scared, plague-ravaged humanity, states “War has… already begun. Ape started war. And human… Human will not forgive.”
The news is coming from Collider, who are citing anonymous sources. But as they point out, Dawn and now War director Matthew Reeves told them in a previous interview that the third Apes film will continue to center on Caesar an will be “about him becoming the seminal figure for ape history. [It’s] like myth ascension, him becoming the ape Moses, for lack of a better sort of character to model him after.” An interesting hint, but we’ll have to wait until July 14, 2017 to find out how it okays out.
Posted on 13 May 2015 by William Gatevackes
Fox’s X-Men shared universe is going to get a little bigger as a long in development mutant property has come one step closer to reality.
The Hollywood Reporter tells us that The Fault In Our Stars director Josh Boone has been hired to direct Fox’s New Mutants adaptation.
The New Mutants were created in 1982 as sort of a way for Marvel to return the mutant franchise back to their roots. Much like the original team that first appeared twenty years prior, this batch of students were teenagers whose powers just developed and needed training in how to use them. However, this time the students were from all over the world, adding an international flavor reminiscent of the “All-New, All-Different” X-Men of the 1970s.
The series and team went through several tonal shifts over its history, from the more esoteric stories of the Bill Sienkiewicz era to the militaristic leanings of the Rob Liefeld era. It is not known which era Fox will pull the team from, or which member it will contain as of yet.
Posted on 13 May 2015 by Rich Drees
We know that Marvel Studios has been planning on diversifying the lead superheroes of their comic book adaptations for some time now, with solo big screen adventures for both Captain Marvel and Black Panther set for 2018. The studio is also looking to diversify the talent behind those films, with The Wrap reporting that Ava DuVernay, the director of last year’s Academy Award-nominated Selma, is being sought after by Marvel “to direct one of its diverse superhero movies.”
The Wrap further states that multiple sources are suggesting that the film in question could be Black Panther and that while the studio is also talking to other potential directors, the interest in her getting behind the camera for a Marvel movie is mutual. It is interesting, and a more than a bit encouraging, that the director of one of the more acclaimed films of last year who should be fielding a number of offers and projects would want to pursue a big superhero blockbuster as her follow up to a Civil Rights drama. Though I could see how the clout of having directed a Marvel film could translate into greasing the wheels to get financing for smaller, more serious fare that she may want to do.
Chadwick Boseman has already been signed to play Black Panther’s titular African prince/superhero, who will make his Marvel Cinematic Universe debut in next year’s Captain America: Civil War.
Additionally, The Wrap is reporting that insiders are telling them that the studio is definitely looking to hire an African-American director for Black Panther and a woman director for Captain Marvel. Landing DuVernay for either position would certainly be a seen as a win for the studio, not only for the talent she would bring to the job but also as some nice PR for the studio in a week where the ACLU has publically asked for investigations into the hiring practices at Hollywood studios which they claim are discriminatory towards women and minorities.
Marvel had previously hired Patty Jenkins to direct Thor: The Dark World, though she left the project before production began over creative differences. Jenkins has gone on to be tapped to direct Warner Brothers Wonder Woman, replacing Michelle MacLaren. If it were a race, Warners looks like it will win as Wonder Woman has a release date scheduled 13 months before Marvel will have Black Panther on the big screen.
Posted on 12 May 2015 by Rich Drees
Dr. Richard Kimble is going back on the run.
Deadline is reporting that Warner Brothers has put into development a new iteration of its classic The Fugitive property. The producers of the 1993 film version, Arnold and Anne Kopelson are returning to produce this new iteration. Deadline is stating that the Kopelsons did not state whether the film’s stars Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones would be returning, but I am guessing that the studio would rather a straight reboot of the property rather than a sequel 22 years after the original.
The Fugitive started off as a popular 1960s TV series in which Dr. Richard Kimble (David Janssen), after being wrongly convicted of murdering his wife, goes on the run from the law, trying to find the mysterious one-armed man he saw at the scene of his wife’s death. In pursuit is Lt. Philip Gerard (Barry Morse), always one step behind Kimble. The series ran for four years before it, in a rarity for the time, provided a resolution to its storyline.
The feature film, which featured Jones in pursuit of Ford, was a runaway (sorry) hit, grossing $369 million worldwide. It spun off a sequel for Jones’ character, US Marshals, which featured him on the hunt for Wesley Snipes and Robert Downey Jr.
While it does seem as if a new Fugitive film seems like another sign of the lack of creativity in Hollywood, I dare say that given the surveillance state that we live in today, there is plenty of fertile new ground that could be covered in a story about a man on the run from the law.
Posted on 12 May 2015 by Rich Drees
Anne Hathaway will have giant monsters on her mind in the upcoming Colossal.
Voltage Pictures is currently at Cannes marketing the film to foreign distributors with the intriguing pitch “Godzilla meets Lost In Translation.” The Hollywood Reporter expands on that description –
Hathaway will play Gloria, an ordinary woman who, after losing her job and her fiancé, decides to leave her life in New York to move back to her hometown.
But when news reports surface that a giant lizard is destroying the city of Tokyo, Gloria gradually comes to realize that she is strangely connected to these far-off events via the power of her mind. In order to prevent further destruction, Gloria needs to determine why her seemingly insignificant existence has such a colossal effect on the fate of the world.
Although the idea of someone having a telepathic link to a giant monster is a new idea for an American film, it is a recurring theme in both the Godzilla and Gamera kaiju franchises.
What is exciting about this project is that is originating with writer/director Nacho Vigalondo, the man behind the twisty, turny Timecrimes. A very smart spin on some standard time travel tropes, the film established Vigalondo as a talent to watch and this next project for him sounds like he could once again be playing with some previously used ideas in hopefully a new and exciting way.
No release date has been set for the film.
Posted on 11 May 2015 by Rich Drees
As Kevin Smith begins prepping to shoot his sequel to 1995’s Mallrats – And it is going to be at the Granite Run Mall in suburban Philadelphia, right Kev? – the writer/director has been busy with many preproduction duties, including finalizing his shooting script. Earlier today, Smith posted to his Facebook page a screengrab of the title page to script dated just two days ago May 9, 2015. You’ll note that the film also has anew title – Mallbrats.
Smith also noted –
IT’S MALL OR NOTHING!
20 years in the making. 113 pages fulla old friends, new jokes and a bloody battle with Stan Lee! This is for you, Jim. Wish you were here… #MallBrats
Over the years, Smith has always described a potential Mallrats sequel as “Die Hard in a mall.” Recently, his search for a location for the film hinged on the fact that there is some destruction happening in the movie’s third act. And, from the gist of his post above, it sounds like Stan Lee may be taking a role in that destruction.
As to the name change, well, when Smith announced that Claire Forlani was returning for the film, he stated that her and Jeremy London’s characters had a child named P. S. Quint, which according to my math would be approximately 18 years old now. Old enough to be one of the titular mallbrats?
Posted on 11 May 2015 by Rich Drees
Last month, director Brad Bird teased that that he had been thinking about some possible ideas for a sequel to his 2003 hit animated film The Incredibles. As he is now making the publicity rounds for his upcoming live action adventure Tomorrowland, Bird is starting to divulge some more about the project.
Speaking with Collider, Bird stated that “it feels like it to me” that Incredibles 2 will be his next project. He went on to reconfirm what he said last month that he has already been working on the script for the film.
Oh yeah I have pages, a bunch of pages. I had a lot of ideas for the original Incredibles that I didn’t get a chance to use, that I like. I have ideas that I wanted to pursue a little bit and there wasn’t enough time in Incredibles. There are new ideas I have, and I think there are enough of those together to make an interesting movie. I’m just focusing on getting Tomorrowland out into the world and playing with the Incredibles sandbox again.
While I really love the world that Bird created for The Incredibles, it was such a well executed film that I never really felt the need for a sequel. And if anything, the lesson that Anchorman 2 taught is that it is very difficult to capture lightening in a bottle twice. Now Bird has shown some amazing chops as a director, crossing over from animation to live action with Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol being perhaps the best installment in that franchise’s run. We’ll see whether that was a fluke or not in a couple of weeks when Tomorrowland comes out, but everything I have seen so far looks promising. If there was anyone right now that could do a really strong sequel to one of the earlier works that is a strong as the original Incredibles is, right now I feel it would be Bird himself.
Posted on 08 May 2015 by Rich Drees
Kill Your Darlings director John Krokidas will be reuniting with his two stars Daniel Radcliffe and Dane DeHaan for Young Americans. The film, whose script landed on the Black List back in 2010 under the title College Republicans, centers on future Republican strategists Lee Atwater and Karl Rove in 1973 when Rove was making a run for national president of the College Republicans organization. Radcliffe will be playing Atwater and DeHaan will be Rove.
Atwater and Rove have carved themselves a legacy for having engineered political campaigns that used tactics that could be considered legally and ethically questionable. Atwater ultimately rose to become chairman of the Republican National Committee and campaign manager for President George Herbert Walker Bush. Rove would manage George W. Bush’s presidential campaign. By becoming a key advisor to the president during his eight years in office, he earned the nickname “Bush’s Brain.”
In 1990, after being diagnosed with brain cancer, Atwater converted to Catholicism and sent apologizes to many of the politicians he felt he wronged with his tactics over the years.
Rove has previously been depicted on film by Toby Jones in Oliver Stone’s W.
Radcliffe is of course perhaps best known for the Harry Potter franchise, but post-Potter he has taken on a variety of roles that have shown a flexibility that he didn’t get a chance to display in that franchise. DeHaan has previously gained experience playing villains in both Chronicle and The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
Previously the script had been set to go with director Richard Linklater attached and Shia LaBeouf and Paul Dano set to star as Lee Atwater and Karl Rove.
Posted on 08 May 2015 by Rich Drees
Joss Whedon had been seen as one of the chief architects of the Marvel Cinematic Universe through its Phase Two set of films. But quietly toiling behind the scenes have been Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely. As the screenwriters of all three Captain America films, as well as having worked on Thor: The Dark World, the two have been involved in some of the key moments of Marvel’s interlocking franchises that aren’t called Avengers. But that is about to change as the pair have been announced as writing the upcoming two-film The Avengers: Infinity War.
Given that Infinity War will be directed by Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Captain America: Civil War directors Joe and Anthony Russo, it is not much of a surprise that Markus and McFeely are taking on the writing chores for the project. Based just on Winter Soldier, the two pair seem to work well together and given the large cast that will be making up Civil War, the studio must be happy with how the writers have managed all the characters and are confident that they will do good work on the equally if not more so crowded Infinity Wars films.
Independent of the Marvel Universe, Markus and McFeely have also written Pain & Gain, You Kill Me and The Life and Death of Peter Sellers.
The first part of Infinity War hits theaters on May 4, 2018 with Part 2 arriving May 3, 2019.
Posted on 08 May 2015 by Rich Drees
It may have been savaged by the critics – It currently has a 51% on Rotten Tomatoes – and did poorly at the box office, but the Farrelly Brothers 2012 comedy The Three Stooges is currently having a sequel developed.
The Hollywood Reporter is stating that Cameron Fay, writer of Paramount’s upcoming comedy Brothers In Law, has the script assignment and the film “is being envisioned as an action-comedy rather than a straight comedy. The producers are looking to add a major action star to the cast.”
Sean Hayes (Larry), Chris Diamantopoulos (Moe) and Will Sass (Curly) are all set to return. Interestingly, the Reporter doesn’t state if the Farrelly Brothers are attached to the film.
If I had to compile a list of films that would be making news today, the Farrelly’s Three Stooges wouldn’t even be anywhere near consideration for such a list. The original only made a worldwide box office intake of $55 million from a budget of $30 million. Toss in advertising costs and I can’t see how the film made any money that would trigger sequel discussion, if it made any money at all.