Tag Archive | "Marvel"

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International GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Trailer Shows A Film You Might Actually Want To See

Posted on 17 June 2014 by William Gatevackes

GuardiansoftheGalaxyLogoHumor has always been a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but always in measured doses and not in such a way that it takes away from the story. Guardians of the Galaxy appeared to change that trend, as every bit of promotional material they gave us seem to indicate that we’d be getting a film that more resembled Welcome Back, Kotter than The Avengers.

Thankfully, Marvel has released an international trailer for GotG, and this version seems more in line with their previous output:

Brendon Connolly over at Bleeding Cool thinks this trailer has a Firefly feel to it, which I can see.  And I also agree with him that this is a good thing.

I’m also tickled by there being more Rocket Raccoon in this version. It seems like Marvel realizes that Rocket is going to be the biggest thing to come out of this movie, and is playing that up.

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Peyton Reed Is Your New ANT-MAN Director

Posted on 07 June 2014 by William Gatevackes

Peyton ReedHis name was rumored to be in the running starting only yesterday, but apparently Peyton Reed wasn’t going to let another Marvel film slip through his fingers.

Entertainment Weekly is saying that Reed has signed on to direct the problematic Ant-Man, and that Marvel has brought on former directorial candidate Adam McKay to rewrite the script. Yes, the man whose best lines as a writer have come from the improvisations of his actors is reworking Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish’s script. Oh, joy!

While numerous news reports state that Reeds last two films made over $200 million at the box office, that was six and eight years ago and $200 million is often the budget for a Marvel. But the one thing we can say for absolute certainty is that considering both men’s resumes are almost exclusively made up of comedies, Ant-Man will be Marvel’s first full fledged comedy.

Since production was supposed to begin on June 2, even if McKay delivers a script on Monday, the production will be at least a week behind.  However that seems unlikely and odds are that McKay will not be writing the film on the fly as production goes on (which seems almost more labor and time  intensive than if he directed the film himself). This means either the July 17, 2015 release date will be bumped back, corners will be cut in post production, or the filming would be rushed. None of this lends itself to a quality film.

Welcome to Marvel, Peyton. I hope you survive the experience.

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Cumberbatch, Hardy Being Considered For DOCTOR STRANGE

Posted on 06 June 2014 by William Gatevackes

cumberbarch hardy dr, strangeWhile Ant-Man flounders in the wake of losing its director, Doctor Strange is pressing full steam ahead, even though it hasn’t been officially announced yet.

One had to expect that after Scott Derrickson was named director of the film, the casting rumors would stat coming fast and furious. And they have.

Deadline is reporting that Marvel has started a wish list of actors they’d like to play Stephen Strange and on the top of that list is Benedict Cumberbatch and Tom Hardy.

Now would be the time to mention that we at that “apple-pie-in-the-sky” period of casting rumors, where the actors named might actually be the ones Marvel wants, they might not actually be the actors Marvel gets.

That being said, if Marvel does cast Cumberbatch as Strange, they can just take my money now. I’ll camp out in the theater and wait for the film to arrive. However, Cumberbatch has been mentioned before in geek cred properties and not signed on (namely Star Wars). So, I’m not holding my breath.

Hardy is an interesting choice. Most people might only know him as the barely-audible Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, but he is definitely a skilled actor. I wouldn’t mind seeing him in the role.

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ANT-MAN Director Carousel Now Lands On Peyton Reed and David Wain

Posted on 06 June 2014 by William Gatevackes

AntManLogo

Have you started to smell the stink of desperation from Marvel yet? I haven’t, but I feel that it is not long coming.

We have two new names in the directorial pool to replace Edgar Wright on Marvel’s Ant-Man–Peyton Reed and David Wain.

The Wrap is the site that throws Reed’s name into the mix, saying he is the top contender. You might remember that Reed, fresh off the inventive Down With Love, had a cup of coffee as the director of the 2005 version of Fantastic Four, before Marvel eventually went with Tim Story. Reed went on to direct hits such as 2006′s The Break-Up and 2008′s Yes Man. That film was Reed’s last theatrical directing job, although he has another graphic novel adaptation, The Fifth Beatle, in pre-production.

The Hollywood Reporter’s Heat Vision blog also lists Reed as a contender, but adds David Wain’s name into contention. Wain is perhaps best known in some circles as a member of the legendary, if underrated, comedy troupe, The State. He has acted, written and directed a number of TV shows and features staring his State cast mates. One can’t help but think that Paul Rudd might have suggested Wain for the job, as the actor has worked with the director around 14 times, starting with 2001′s Wet Hot American Summer right up to this June’s They Came Together.

One thinks that eventually Marvel will find someone to pick up this accursed project. I’ll do it for them, for a lifetime supply of Marvel Comics. Call me, Marvel.

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Movement On DOCTOR STRANGE–Derrickson As Director, Leto Possibly As Lead

Posted on 03 June 2014 by William Gatevackes

scott-derrickson

Well, I guess this solves the mystery as to what another of Marvel’s mystery Phase Three films will be.

Variety is reporting that The Exorcism of Emily Rose and Sinister director Scott Derrickson is in has been hired to helm the long-rumored Doctor Strange film. The director confirmed the hiring via a Tweet.

Derrickson has a reputation as a low-cost, big return talent. The Exorcism of Emily Rose made seven times its budget back worldwide, and the $3 million dollar budgeted Sinister made over $77 million, worldwide. Even his remake of The Day The Earth Stood Still, which failed to make its budget back domestically, made over $233 million world wide. Surely this played a role in Marvel’s decision.

jared-letoBadass Digest’s Devin Faraci adds that Derrickson will also take a pass at the script, as he is wont to do on films he directs. Faraci also states that newly-minted Oscar winner Jared Leto is the latest name on Marvel’s wish list to play the good doctor, a move he doesn’t act kindly to.

I am not familiar with Derrickson work, but he seems to be a fan. And Leto is riding high on a lot of buzz right now, and even if he rubs you the wrong way, he’s an actor that takes every role he’s cast in seriously.

So far we know that Ant-Man is set for a July 31, 2015 release, with Captain America 3 following on May 6, 2016. As of now Marvel have July 8, 2016 and May 5, 2017 staked out for as yet unannounced films and conceivably Dr. Strange could slide into one of these berths easily. Judging by how their previous two phases have unfolded, I would guess that 2017 will see one more film and early 2018 will give us the third Avengers film. With Dr. Strange now slated for one of those three spots, speculation will begin as to what characters will take the other two spots, as they will probably be needed to help set elements involving intergalactic villain Thanos for his expected appearance in Avengers 3. Will it be sequels to Thor and Guardians Of The Galaxy, or new characters such as The Inhumans or Black Panther? I believe we’ll find out a lot in several weeks at San Diego Comic Con.

DrStrange

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Thurber, Fleischer, McKay In Running To Direct ANT-MAN

Posted on 30 May 2014 by William Gatevackes

Thurber Fleischer McKayWhoever takes over the reins from Edgar Wright on the Ant-Man film will have not only big shoes to film, but also have to have the fortitude to endure a constant Internet lambasting. It’s fitting then that, according to The Wrap, Marvel is looking at three veteran directors to step in and take over. Who are they? Let me tell you, from left to right above:

  • Rawson Marshall Thurber: The Wrap says that Thurber is the front runner for the job. He is best known for the comedies Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story and last year’s surprise hit We’re the Millers.
  • Ruben Fleischer: Best known for the inventive Zombieland, he is coming off the flops 30 Minutes or Less and The Gangster Squad.
  • Adam McKay: Certainly the most experienced of the group, with the most films on his resume. He is known for his improvisational style of directing and his frequent partnering with Will Ferrell. He has worked with Paul Rudd on both Anchorman films. He’s the less likely of the three to get the job because A) he has always directed stuff he himself wrote and B) while his improvisational style might work on the film that will be making up its script as it goes along, I doubt Marvel is going to let anyone have that kind of freedom.

Having three men known primarily for comedies in contention for the directorship lends us to believe that Marvel intends Ant-Man to be a comedy.  This flies in the face of a popular line of gossip that Marvel was upset and concern about Guardians of the Galaxy‘s humorous tone, and that played into the decision to part ways with Edgar Wright. Of course, the Russo Brothers were primarily known for sitcoms, and they delivered a fairly fine action film in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

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New GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Clip Shows Us…Nothing New

Posted on 08 April 2014 by William Gatevackes

GuardiansoftheGalaxyLogoI have to admit, I have serious reservations about Guardians of the Galaxy, and the latest exclusive footage released to MTV doesn’t quell these fears.

As part of MTV Movie Awards Takeover: Captain America: The Winter Soldier, we were privy to a new GotG extended trailer(which is embedded below). What we got was essentially the trailer you already saw, but with the opening sequence of it expanded a little bit.

While MTV is trying to play the new footage up as being like Raiders of the Lost Ark (which others have parroted), outside of both protagonists stealing something off a pedestal, there isn’t much similarity between the two. The added footage gives us a look at Star-Lord’s boot rockets and mask (which were already on display during last year’s San Diego Comic Con), put on display during the character’s goofy escape from Korath (Djimon Hounsou). Then there is some footage of Star-Lord leaping across an alien landscape, then the rest of the trailer hits.

This is all well and good, but we still have no idea what the film is about. The GotG trailer ran before Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Joining it was the trailer for Lucy, the new Scarlett Johannson film which will arrive in theaters a week after GotG. That trailer told you enough about what was going on (ScarJo play an unwilling drug mule who gets superpowers when the experimental drug leaks into her system) that you can make a judgement about the film. The GotG trailer is basically exposition about the team members, a few random action scenes and explosions, and tells you nothing about the story. Is there a reason why Marvel is keeping it a secret?

Anyway, Guardians of the Galaxy opens up on August 1, 2014.

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Review: CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER

Posted on 05 April 2014 by William Gatevackes

captainamericawintersoldierposterSteve Rogers (Chris Evans) is having a hard time adjusting to the modern world. Not socially. He has a list of pop culture touchstones, the Internet and a new friend in PSTD Counselor Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) to help him adjust. No, his problem is with his job. He has a hard time with S.H.I.E.L.D. and their proactive stance towards world security. Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) considers the organization’s latest initiative, a new brand of super Helicarriers that can identify terrorists DNA and exterminate them from miles away, to be the natural response to the changing world situation. Cap feels that it is just fear mongering.

Things come to a head after a mission to free a S.H.I.E.L.D. ship from pirates starts a chain reaction that causes Cap to be hunted by not only S.H.I.E.L.D., but also a new mercenary called the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan), an operative that Cap finds awfully familiar.

Captain_America _The_Winter_Soldier_1After two stumbles with Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier marks not just a return to form for Marvel, but also a film that raises the bar for the studio. This is not just a great Marvel film, nor is it just a great comic book film, nor is it just a great sequel. Don’t get me wrong, it is all those things,  but it’s also a great film period. It is a wonderful mix of script, directing and acting to make a complete package.

There are so many good things I can say about this film that it’s hard to know where to begin. The movie is a tense political conspiracy thriller with many twists, turns and “everything is not what it seems” moments. It is a complex film, yet it is presented in a straightforward manner. It doesn’t make the viewer feel stupid, either by dumbing down the plot so it becomes too obvious or having the story be so obtuse that it is impossible to understand.

cap and widowAnd unlike Iron Man 3, which shoehorned Tony Stark into the role of a amateur detective, a role he was ill-fitted for and went totally against character, this film nails what makes the Captain America character great. Captain America gets knocked for being too much of a Boy Scout. But his ability to see only right and wrong where the rest of the world works in shades of grey is exactly what a film like this needs. And credit to Chris Evans to never letting this characterization seem hokey or corny. To be honest, this film made me respect Evans’ acting ability much more than I did going in. Pay attention to him during the nursing home scene (you’ll know which one when you see it). That’s a great piece of acting there.

Big kudos need to go to the Russo Brothers. Even though they are most known for directing TV comedies, they have an innate talent for directing films of this sort. While the film runs two hours and 16 minutes, it never feels that long. The film’s pacing is excellent. It just breezes by. But that’s not to say that the film feels rushed. There’s a lot of characters, concepts and plot elements introduced, and all all are allowed to blossom into full development at their own pace. Unlike Thor: The Dark World, the villains here are not one note. Their villainy is totally reprehensible yet totally logical. It’s now obvious to see why Marvel signed the duo up so early to direct the next sequel.

wintersoldier with shield - CopyI feel I have to comment on the action scenes. Often, action scenes feel like they are presented  after a spate of exposition to keep audiences awake. Here, the action is stitched seamlessly into the narrative. And the action scenes are expertly choreographed and completely inventive. It’s refreshing to see this in a film.

cap and alexCaptain America: The Winter Soldier also is a great follow up to Captain America: The First Avenger and fits in better with the shared Marvel Cinematic Universe than the last two MCU films. Even though the tone and style of the films are radically different, this film is a definite follow up to the first film in the best way possible. And while I sat through Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World wondering why more of the other heroes stopped by to help out, I didn’t get that feeling here. Perhaps this is because efforts were made, mostly through creative namedropping, to let us know that Tony Stark and Bruce Banner still exist. Another reason is that the action is rather compartmentalized and took place over a rather short period of time.

If you are fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, then this film is a must see. Not just because it is good, but because it is a major game changer for the Marvel films from here on out (and if you watch Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., you might want to let the episodes pile up in your DVR until you catch this film ). However, if you are the person who has to drag a non-comic loving friend or loved one to these types of film, this might be a film they will like on their own terms. It’s that good.

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New Releases: April 4, 2014

Posted on 03 April 2014 by William Gatevackes

captainamericawintersoldierposter1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier (Disney, 3,938 Theaters, 136 Minutes, Rated PG-13): After what I thought were disappointing efforts in Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World, I felt that chinks in Marvel’s cinematic armor were beginning to show. That led me to have serious doubts about this film. Cap is my second favorite Marvel character, and to have his next movie be directed by a pair of brothers with little big screen or action movie experience didn’t help matters any.

But the advance buzz for the film has been overwhelmingly positive. The film has an 89% positive rating at Rotten Tomatoes, rarefied air for comic book film. And people have been saying that the film is the best Marvel film to date.

So, yeah, my doubts have been replaced by a giddy, childlike anticipation for the film. I’ll be seeing the first showing tomorrow. FilmBuffOnline Head Honcho Rich Drees has already seen the film, and I’m sure his thoughts will be up on the site soon. And, if Rich lets me, my thoughts will be published not long after.

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Bloomberg Business Week Article Gives Hints To Marvel Studios’ Future

Posted on 03 April 2014 by William Gatevackes

BBWMarvelCoverIt’s not often that you find film scoop and spoilers from a financial magazine, but that is what you get from Bloomberg Business Week’s profile on Marvel Studios in their latest issue. Yes, you do get facts and figures illustrating how Marvel’s film arm benefited the comic book company financially from the Devin Leonard article, but you also get some information on the what the future of their film franchises.

For instance:

  • Marvel has a slate for their film output mapped out until 2028: Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they know what characters will be hitting the big screen between now and 2028. I’m sure that there are some films penciled in here and there, but I think that what they are talking about is merely a release framework. And, even if they did have characters inked in up to 2028, I wouldn’t count anything being cast in stone. Who knows if comic book films will still be popular in 14 years?
  • There is a mystery villain in Guardians of the Galaxy: As an example of Kevin Feige’s hands-on approach to the Marvel films, the article describes a conversation between Feige and Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn about a certain scene from the film. The scene involves “an imposing-looking villain any serious comic book fan would recognize instantly” who ” sits on a rocket-powered throne.” Feige swears Leonard to secrecy, stating the reveal would be a big spoiler. However, this does not stop Leonard from suggesting that it might be Dr. Doom (whose rights are owned by Fox, not Marvel, so it can’t be him), MODOK (whose trippy visual appearance would fit in with the alien world of outer space, but would be too big of a break from his comic book origin), and Odin (which, if you’ve seen the Thor: The Dark World, is not that much of a stretch). Of course, the much more likely candidate is Thanos, a character everyone suspected would be in the film anyway.
  • The characters in Guardians of the Galaxy might be spun off into their own movies: This might be a case of putting the cart before the horse, as GotG is Marvel’s riskiest venture to date and its success is anything but guaranteed. But I think it would be at the very least prudent to put a Rocket Raccoon film into early development.
  • There might be more characters introduced in The Avengers: Age of Ultron than we have been told, and they might be getting films too: Leonard relates a meeting of Disney head honchos Bob Iger and Alan Horn with the Marvel brain trust about characters being introduced  in the Avengers sequel who might be good candidates for their own film. Iger refuses to name the characters. Now, by now we know that Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch and Vision have already been named as being in the film. Could this mean there could be more Avengers added to the roll call? Well, that depends on when the leg work for the article was done. James Gunn is doing preliminary work on a scene from GotG in the article. Now, if this is a scene that is going to be tacked on the already finished film, then the spinoff character(s) might be someone new, like the oft rumored Black Panther or Ms. Marvel. If Leonard did the legwork while GotG was in preproduction, I don’t believe that Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch or the Vision were announced at that time, so Iger could be referring to them.

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