Tag Archive | "Comics And Film"

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A Peek At Odin’s Throne Room

Posted on 18 July 2010 by Rich Drees

A new picture from Marvel Studio’s upcoming superhero adaptation Thor has just popped up and this one features the throne room of Odin, king of the Norse Gods. Click on the picture for a much larger look.

Although it’s a wide shot of the room, you can definitely make a lot of detail and pick out a few things that haven’t been seen before. To the far left is what appears to be Tom Hiddleston as the god of mischief Loki, complete with his horned helmet. I’m not sure whom the woman in front of him is. Perhaps Jaimie Alexander as Sif?

In the center, kneeling with his back to us is of course Chris Hemsworth as the god of thunder, Thor and Anthony Hopkins as his father Odin. I love the ornateness of his throne. And notice Odin’s two ravens – Huginn and Muninn – perched there?

On the far right it looks like two of the Warriors Three – closer to Odin’s throne is Tadanobu Asano as Hogun and behind him is Joshua Dallas as Fandral. (No Volstagg?)

I have to admit that I am liking the epic scope that director Kenneth Branagh has brought to the film, or at least to the bits that we have seen so far. With the San Diego Comic Con kicking off later this week, expect more Thor news to turn up in the barrage of reportage from the show.

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Norton Weighs In On AVENGERS Casting Controversy

Posted on 12 July 2010 by Rich Drees

We’ve heard the original story that Marvel Studios wasn’t going to be bringing back Edward Norton to reprise his Incredible Hulk role of Dr. Bruce Banner. Then Marvel Studios released an official statement as to why they were going to recast the role. Norton’s agent wasn’t to thrilled with what Marvel had to say, and decided to tell the world about it.

But up until now, the one person who has been strangely silent on the whole controversy is Norton himself. That is, like I said, up until now.

Norton took to his Facebook page and released this statement –

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how you take the high road.

Of course, responding with a blistering attack could only be seen as reinforcing Feige’s assertion that Norton is not “an actor who embodies the creativity and collaborative spirit of our other talented cast members.”

Either way, I’m hoping that we have now put the whole story behind us except for seeing who Marvel ultimately casts in the vacated role. Will it be the rumored Joaquim Phoenix? With the San Diego Comic Con coming up next week, I don’t think we have to wait too long to find out.

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Joaquim Phoenix Replacing Norton In AVENGERS?

Posted on 12 July 2010 by Rich Drees

It seems like “Ed Norton is not playing Bruce Banner in The Avengers” is the story that just keeps on giving.

Friday, it was reported that Marvel Studios was not going to bring actor Ed Norton to reprise his Incredible Hulk role of Bruce Banner in their upcoming superhero team-up film The Avengers. The news caught fans off-guard and the expected uproar went up at the usual fan internet hangouts. Marvel Studios quickly swung in to damage control mode, stating “the need for an actor who embodies the creativity and collaborative spirit of our other talented cast members” was the key factor behind the decision. Norton’s agent quickly responded, calling Marvel Studios, and in particular studio chief Kevin Feige’s remarks “purposefully misleading, inappropriate,” “mean spirited, accusatory” and “unprofessional, disingenuous and clearly defamatory.”

The latest chapter of the story is unfolding today, as CHUD is reporting from unnamed sources that Marvel has put out an offer to actor Joaquim Phoenix to take the part left open by Norton’s dismissal.

If he is indeed mulling over the offer, there are a few factors he is probably considering. Many other actors currently involved with Marvel Studios’ overlapping superhero franchises have contracts for multiple films, so it is probable that options for future films, including a continuation of the Hulk franchise, are included here. Also, CHUD is stating that whomever takes on the role will be the low man on the pay scale totem pole.

Whomever Marvel casts in the role, they’ll have to hurry if they want to unveil the entire cast at the San Diego Comic Con in less than two weeks.

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CONAN Writers Tapped For DR. STRANGE Film

Posted on 22 June 2010 by William Gatevackes

Who will be the next Marvel character to hit the big screen? Which one will be the first to be produced under Marvel’s partnership with Disney? It looks like it will be Doctor Strange.

Deadline: New York is reporting that the writers of the Conan revamp, Thomas Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer, have been hired to develop the good doctor for the big screen. The pair also wrote a draft of another comic book adaptation, Cowboys and Aliens.

Dr. Strange is Stephen Strange, once an egotistical, high-profile surgeon whose practice was ruined when his hands were injured in a car accident. Losing the one thing that made him special, Strange descends a spiral of self-destruction. As a last ditch effort, he travels to a remote Himalayan village to visit a mystic to get his life back. The mystic instead train Strange to take his place as the world’s sorcerer supreme.

Of all the thousands of untapped Marvel characters, I always believed that Dr. Strange would be the best fit for the silver screen. Not only due to his origin, which I think is very interesting and cinematic in its own right, but his adventures can lead to so many different interpretations. They can be in horror–either psychological of “jump out and grab you”–or a trippy, psychedelic mind warp of a film like The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus or Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland. But the property would be best served as some combination of all the above.

But who should play the doctor? Well, according to Bleeding Cool.com, Patrick Dempsey supposedly is interested in the role. The image to the right was created by Hollywood-based comic artist Arne Starr and presumably has been shown to Marvel execs to sell them on Dempsey as Doctor Strange.

Dempsey does have a relationship with Disney, having starred in their recent hit Enchanted, so his casting might not be that absurd if Disney takes a hands-on approach to Marvel’s film offerings. However, if I was the one casting, I’d go with another TV doctor. I think House‘s Hugh Laurie would be an excellent choice for the role. He is more of a physical match for the character and can definitely play that kind of role.

And where would Dr. Strange fit in with the Iron Man/Thor/Captain America: The First Avenger/Avengers shared universe thing? Well, he probably wouldn’t. Not that he couldn’t–those films are distributed by Paramount but controlled by Marvel so it’s assumed they will come over to Disney after their distribution agreement is finished. But Dr. Strange, until recently, was never a big part of the Avengers mythos in the comics. So, the best I’d think we could hope for would be a passing reference, if that.

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First Look: GREEN HORNET Pics And Footage

Posted on 21 June 2010 by Rich Drees

Over the weekend, I found myself reading an online article tracing the various looks that old time radio hero-turned comic book hero the Green Hornet had sported in his various four color incarnations over the decades. And as I was reading, I started to wonder when we would finally see some official pictures of Seth Rogen in the upcoming big screen adaption of the masked crimefighter’s adventures. (We saw a few unofficial looks when the film was in production last fall.) Well, today those first official pictures were released, along with about a minute of footage appearing on Entertainment Tonight.

Both photos feature stars Rogen as newspaper publisher Britt Reid/the Green Hornet and Jay Chou as his sidekick Kato. The second picture especially hints that the film could be fairly exciting and action-filled.

The Entertainment Tonight clip, on the other hand, leaves me a little worried as it gives the impression that Rogen may be playing yet another variation of his lovable doofus character. Of course, this could be impression created by some careful editing in order to sell the film to the large portion of his fan base who probably have never heard of the Green Hornet before. We’ll get more of a look at the film when the first trailer is unveiled tonight on Jimmy Kimmel Live.

The Green Hornet hits theaters in 3D next January.

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Warners Hires Writers For GREEN LANTERN 2 And FLASH

Posted on 10 June 2010 by Rich Drees

In what can only be a strong show of support for a movie that is still in production, Warner Brothers has hired three writers to begin developing a sequel to the upcoming comic book adaptation Green Lantern.

The studio has Greg Berlanti, Michael Green and Marc Guggenheim to begin developing a storyline for Green Lantern 2 while the first film is still a year away from hitting theaters. Additionally, the studio has also tasked the writers with developing a treatment for another potential comic book adaptation, The Flash. Depending on circumstances, the writers’ deals call for them to then turn one of the two treatments in to a full fledged script. Previously, all three writers had worked on the first Green Lantern screenplay.

Still in production in New Orleans, Green Lantern stars Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan, a fearless jet pilot who is recruited to be a member of an intergalactic police force known as the Green Lanterns. James Bond franchise veteran Martin Campbell is directing. The Flash also has a police connection, centering on a police forensic scientist who gains the ability to move at super speed.

This looks to be Warner Brothers first strong move in bringing the characters published by DC Comics to the big screen following a corporate restructure between the two Time Warner-owned companies last September that aimed to allow the comics publisher more creative input into the film adaptations of its characters. Fan favorite writer Geoff Johns was appointed DC’s Chief Creative Officer. (The adaptations of The Losers, released in April and Jonah Hex, due later this month, were in production before the restructure.)

This kind of forward thinking is hopefully the hallmark that Warners and DC have a bigger plan for their comic book adaptations. Marvel Studios has had more than a little success with their ongoing plans to crossover their individual superhero films Iron Man, Incredible Hulk, Thor and Captain America for the team film The Avengers coming in 2012. Could DC and Warner already be planning on creating a similar shared cinematic universe? I think that we may have actually already seen the first that this may be the case back in March when Angela Bassett was cast in Green Lantern as Amanda Waller, the head of the spy organization Checkmate and a character not usually associated with the Green Lantern books.

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Posted on 08 June 2010 by Rich Drees

Throughout the casting process for the upcoming Captain America: The First Avenger, the one role that has remained conspicuously vacant has been that of the scientist who helps to create the titular hero.

Now we know it will be Stanley Tucci who will be the government scientist Dr. Abraham Erskine, who injects the weakling Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) with the Super Soldier Serum, transforming him in to the patriotic-themed superhero. Unfortunately for those of us who are fans of the actor and know the origin of the comics character, we know that role won’t yield much screen time for the Academy Award nominated actor.

Captain America, which is scheduled to go in front of the cameras this summer, is shaping up to have a stellar cast. In addition to Tucci, the film will also feature Tommy Lee Jones, Toby Jones, Hugo Weaving, Sebastian Stan, Hayley Atwell and Neal McDonough.

Via Hollywood Reporter.

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THOR Costume Concept Art Leaks

Posted on 03 June 2010 by William Gatevackes

Hot on the heels of the leaked Captain America: The First Avenger concept art, comes some art of Chris Hemsworth as Thor. These pictures give us a full body look at the costume, whereas the previously leaked photos only showed his torso.

The costume is remarkably like the one in the comics. It looks like they are going to jettison the helmet, which would be hard to pull off on screen, the chestplate is a little more “busy” and the chainmail on the legs has been replaced by leather pants, but this is essentially the costume you’d find on Thor in his comics on stands right now.

Having the hammer appear to be lit up from within is a nice touch. It’s an effect I haven’t really seen before (at least not to my knowledge) and adds to the image of power of the weapon.

Via Collider.

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First Look: CAPTAIN AMERICA’s Costume

Posted on 02 June 2010 by Rich Drees

The last week or so has seen some descriptions of the costume Chris Evans will be wearing in the upcoming Captain America comic book adaptation floating around. A couple of sites have run fan art based on those descriptions, but earlier today, Aint It Cool actually got a hold of production art for of the costume. (JoBlo.com has confirmed that these are the pieces that they saw last week but were unable to post.) Click on each image for a much larger version.

This design is the second of two Cap costumes that will appear in the film, this being the one he wears into battle against the Nazis and the Red Skull (Hugo Weaving) during World War Two. It definitely draws interest from the iteration of Captain America that appears in Marvel Comics’ “Ultimates” line of books, as you can see by comparing the art work at left with the production art below. This is not that surprising. The look of the Ultimates version of spy master Nick Fury was based on actor Samuel Jackson, whom Marvel Studios then went and signed to a nine picture deal to appear in the studios various comic book adaptations.

Captain America: The First Avenger will be in theaters July 22, 2011 and Cap will go on to appear in the superhero team-up The Avengers with Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and others in May 2012.

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Is This The SPIDER-MAN Shortlist?

Posted on 27 May 2010 by Rich Drees

Almost immediately after Sony Pictures squeezed Sam Raimi out of the Spider-Man franchise that the director launched for the studio at the beginning of the year, speculation began as to whom would replace star Toby Maguire in the title roll of a mild-mannered high school student who must learn to handle great responsibility after he receives great power from a radioactive spider bite.

The Hollywood Reporter has learned that the studio and incoming director Marc Webb have been meeting with many candidates. None of them have advanced to the screen test stage yet, but there certainly seem to be some front- runners in the pack. They are –

Jamie Bell – The British-born actor first burst on to screens at the age of 14 as the titular Billy Elliot in 2000. Since then, he has appeared in such indie fare as The Chumscruber (2005) and more Hollywood projects like Jumper (2008). Next year, he’ll be starring in Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson’s motion-capture CG animated The Adventures Of Tintin.

Alden Ehrenreich – According to the IMDb, Ehrenreich was “discovered” by Spielberg when he saw the young actor in a comedy video playing at his daughter’s friend bat mitzvah. Ehrenreich has parlayed that in to a couple of television appearances and a lead role in last year’s Frances Ford Coppola film Tetro.

Frank Dillane – This 19 year old actor has just two film credits on his resume – 1997’s Welcome To Sarajevo and last year’s Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince in which he played a young Tom Riddle.

Andrew Garfield – Garfield made a good impression on me earlier this year in Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium Of Dr. Parnassus. But he has been steadily building up an impressive resume over the last few years with appearances in the British television series Sugar Rush, the British Red Riding crime trilogy and landing a part in Aaron Sorkin’s upcoming movie about Facebook, The Social Network.

Josh Hutcherson – Although barely 18 years old, Hutcherson has the most impressive resume of this bunch with lead roles in Zathura, Bridge To Terabithia, Journey To The Center Of The Earth, the much buzzed about Sundance  film The Kids Are Alright and the upcoming Red Dawn remake.

Out of these five, I would say that Hutcherson and Ehrenreich are the two strongest contenders in my book. Being in their mid-20s, Bell and Garfield are both a bit old to fit in to the studio’s mandate that this new Spider-Man film moves the character back to his high school student roots. While Dillane fits the age range for the character, I just don’t remember him making much of an impression in his Harry Potter role. Ehrenreich doesn’t have much more of a profile, but he has the cache of Spielberg and Coppola behind him. Hutcherson has the most experience out of the group. While he is signed to do the upcoming Journey To The Center Of The Earth sequel, I am sure that the two productions can work out a schedule to allow him to appear in both.

Currently Webb is readying the Spider-Man reboot to start shooting by the end of the year. Writer Alvin Sargent is currently putting a polish on the screenplay.

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