October 31, 2011

Katee Sackhoff Offered Role In Riddick 3?

BloodyDisgusting is reporting that casting is underway for Riddick 3: Dead Man Stalking and that a few offers have gone out. Offers were given to Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica), Bokeem Woodbine (Total Recall, The Big Hit) and a couple of unknowns. Sackhoff would play the role of Dahl a Nordic merc tracking Riddick. Vin Diesel and Karl Urban are currently the only confirmed cast members of the third installment.

Writer/director David Twohy and Diesel have been promising a gritty scaled down sequel that will end up with a hard R-rating. I enjoyed the world of criminals, off-world prisons, colonies and mercenaries setup in the first film. Hopefully the team ends up giving us a better effort than the last film.

Anthony LaPaglia Joins Django Unchained, Joseph Gordon-Levitt's Role Revealed

Deadline reports that Australian actor Anthony LaPaglia (The Client, Empire Records, Summer of Sam) has joined Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained. He'll play the leader of the Australian slave-trading gang who kidnap Django (Foxx) and his wife Broomhilda (Washington) selling them to Calvin Candie (DiCaprio). LaPaglia revealed that Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Inception, Dark Knight Rises, 50/50) will play his younger brother in the film. This is confirmation that Joseph has been indeed been cast. It will be interesting to see Gordon-Levitt adopt an Australian accent along with playing a villain.

Warner Bros. Adds Another Writer To Logan's Run

HeatVision reports that Warner Bros. has hired yet another writer to tinker with the Logan's Run script. Andrew Baldwin has been set to give his contribution previously writers Alex Garland (28 Days Later, Sunshine) and Will Beall (Gangster Squad) had worked on it. Baldwin recently sold the Yakuza film The Outsider to the studio and wrote Red Asphalt for Timur Bekmembatov (Wanted, Abe Lincoln Vampire Hunter).

The film starring Ryan Gosling has also gone through a few different directors. It first started out with Bryan Singer (X-Men) then went to James McTiegue (V For Vendetta) later to Carl Erik Rinsch (47 Ronin) and finally to Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive, Bronson, Pusher).

October 30, 2011

Shane Black Talks Villains & Casting For Iron Man 3

Shane Black (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Lethal Weapon) the director and co-writer of Iron Man 3 was speaking at the Long Beach Comic-Con (via ComicBookResources). He gave up brief details on the third installment which included one villain that won't be included along with who will be returning.

Mandarin is a villain Black doesn't want to see included as he's "a racist caricature". Which might be a shock to Jon Faverau who originally wanted to use him. Jon Favreau, Gwyneth Paltrow and Don Cheadle are expected to reprise their supporting roles. He also stated the film won't be focused on The Avengers or Easter eggs.

October 29, 2011

Olivia Wilde & Director Confirmed For Tomb Raider ?

CinePop (via MovieHole) is reporting that Olivia Wilde (Tron Legacy, Cowboys & Aliens) will play Lara Croft in the Tomb Raider reboot. Wilde has long been rumored for the role and was a fan favorite (including mine). Of course neither site is confirming with an official source so this might not turn out to be true. They go on to say that the film's director will be Mark Fergus who is best known as a screenwriter. Writing scripts for projects like Children of Men, Iron Man, Cowboys & Aliens along with the upcoming Akira. Fergus' only previous directing experience is from making the thriller First Snow. Mark along with his writing partner Hawk Ostby were hired earlier in the year by GK Films to write the script which was reported by Deadline.

October 28, 2011

Joel Kinnaman Cast As Lancelot In Arthur & Lancelot

HeatVision reports that Joel Kinnaman has landed the role of Lancelot in Warner Bros' Arthur & Lancelot. It had been reported that Joel and Kit Harrington (Game of Thrones) were the front-runners of the film. The studio will now have Joel do chemistry reads with other candidates that include Kit Harrington, Sam Claflin (On Stranger Tides, Snow White & The Huntsman), Dominic Cooper (Captain America, Devil's Double), Hans Matheson (Sherlock Holmes), Jim Sturgess, Ben Walker (Abe Lincoln Vampire Hunter, Paradise Lost) and Liam Hemsworth (Expendables 2). This very well means that Joel is now out of the running for Steven Soderbergh's The Man From UNCLE.

RUMOR: Fin Fang Foom In Avengers?

One of the most interesting things about the Avengers trailer is that we don't ever see what is causing all the destruction in New York City. During the Avengers' Cleavland shoot there was a mystery scene code named Leviathan. Could it refer to the space ship of Loki's army or an actual giant monster the reeks havoc on the city? We've been hearing lots of rumors that the Skrulls are in fact Loki's army in question but it has yet to be confirmed by the studio, director or the cast. There is also the possibility that the Atlantians (Namor the Sub-Mariner) could be involved as the Leviathan is a sea monster. A Leviathan monster doesn't sound out of the question considering the cosmic and magic themes used in previous films. Fin Fang Foom has been brought up by ComicBookMovie as the possible identity of the monstrous creature.

Foom is best known as the giant dragon-like villain of Iron Man. Hulk and Thor have also gone up against him in the comics. He was briefly spotted in Iron Man 2 on a billboard as an Easter egg. It's unlikely that we would see the character in Iron Man 3 since there's been talk that future films will be more grounded. Avengers on the other hand is a perfect place to bring in creatures like Foom into the picture. Since he could be called out of the other realms, outer space or with magic pulled out of the billboard into reality by Loki. While I think Avengers is a great film to use Foom Marvel Studios' isn't known for overloading their movies with villains. I also don't think Whedon is looking to have his own "Release The Kraken!" moment.

Hayley Atwell Joins The Sweeney

Vertigo Films' The Sweeney is getting a boost from a few recent additions to their cast. ThePlaylist (via TheDailyMail) reports that Captain America actress Hayley Atwell will play a female detective in the film. Atwell has also been in the running for Tom Cruise projects One Shot and the science fiction action film Oblivion/Horizons. Other additions include Damian Lewis (Band of Brothers, Homeland), Steven Mackintosh (Luther, The Escapist) and Paul Anderson (Sherlock Holmes 2).

The film is based on the popular gritty British series of the same name. Originally Michael Fassbender and Jason Statham had been linked for the role opposite Ray Winstone. Later Benjamin Drew better known as musician Plan B was put in the part. While director Nick Love has had moderate success his films are mostly messy pieces of visual exercises. His films The Business, The Firm and Football Factory were all let downs. However, Love did show some promise with Outlaw which in my opinion is his best film. The only real guiding light behind this project is that it's script is from screenwriter John Hodge. Hodge is best known for his scripts for Danny Boyle films Shallow Grave, Trainspotting, The Beach, A Life Less Ordinary and the upcoming Trance.

My concern is that The Sweeney could end up a B-film on the level of the recent British crime thriller Blitz. Strong casting with Adian Gillen (The Wire, Game of Thrones), Paddy Considine (Dead Man's Shoes, Red Riding) and newcomer Luke Evans (The Hobbit) wasn't enough to save the Jason Statham pedestrian cop thriller. Hopefully a solid script and cast will be enough to give Love enough incentive to give his best effort.

Albert Finney Joins Bond 23

Legendary actor Albert Finney (Miller's Crossing) has joined Sam Mendes' (Road To Perdition) Bond 23 (Skyfall?) according to ThePlaylist . He joins newcomers Ralph Fiennes, Javier Bardem, Ben Whishaw (Layer Cake, Purfume), Naomie Harris (Miami Vice, Pirates 2-3), Helen McCrory (Deathly Hallows 1-2) and Berenice Marlohe. Returners include Daniel Craig and Judi Dench along with Rory Kinnear who played M's assistant in Quantum.

Finney's role is unknown but there has been talk of bringing back the iconic role of Q. Who is the supplier and inventor of Bond's useful gadgets. Since Naomie Harris is playing Miss Moneypenny it might not be out of the question. There has been talk of the action scenes being scaled down in favor for Oscar contentions and to make it more thrilling/grounded.

October 27, 2011

Actresses In The Running To Star Alongside Jason Segel In Sex Tape

Deadline reports that Sony Pictures is trying to put together a comedy project for director Nicholas Stroller with Jason Segel in mind to star. Stroller has been gathering quite a bit of success with Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Get Him To The Greek and the upcoming The Five-Year Engagement. The project titled Sex Tape based on the script by Kate Angelo sounds like a raunchy version of Date Night were a couple looses their sex tape and tries to case it down. Reese Witherspoon was also mentioned as a potential actress for the lead. Variety adds names like Amy Adams (Enchanted, Leap Year, Talladega Nights), Emily Blunt (Devil Wears Prada, Wild Target), Rose Byrne (Bridesmaids, X-Men First Class) and Jennifer Garner (Aurthur, Juno).

Reese doesn't seems like a great fit but did give a decent performance in Legally Blonde and could be okay in This Means War. Emily Blunt has worked with Jason on three previous films playing his love interest in Stroller's Five-Year Engagement and Gulliver's Travels. Amy stars alongside Jason in The Muppets as the love interest,  so she seems like a solid candidate too. Rose worked with Stroller on Get Him To The Greek and while she was terrible in Bridesmaids is likely getting credit for it's success. I can't say I'd want to see Garner in the lead since I feel she has the personality of a wet paper bag in her movies.

Martin Scorsese Circling Serial Killer Film The Snowman

Variety reports Working Title who is best known for films like Love Actually, Atonement and the budding George Smiley franchise (Tinker, Tailor, Soldier Spy) is looking to pull in Martin Scorsese to direct their next project. They've got a hold of the rights to Jo Nesbø's The Snowman which involves a Norwegian serial killer and detective Harry Hole. They have screenwriter Matthew Michael Carnahan (State of Play, World War Z) tackling the script with Martin circling the director's chair.

It's just one installment in a series of novels. Considering how much play David Fincher's Swedish set Millennium Trilogy (Dragon Tattoo) and Ridley Scott's British set Red Riding Trilogy (remake) is getting. It seems like studios could be looking for the next European set serial killer thriller.

Scorsese has a couple projects coming up which includes The Irishman (I Heard You Paint Houses) and Silence. The Irishman currently has Al Pacino, Harvey Keitell, Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci attached and a script by Steve Zallian (Dragon Tattoo, Gangs of New York). I'd like to think Marty would focus first on The Irishman then go after this Norgweian set thriller.

Hayley Atwell, Kate Beckinsale & Diane Kruger Testing For Horizons

Deadline reports that actresses Hayley Atwell (Captain America), Diane Kruger (Inglourious Basterds) and Kate Beckinsale (Total Recall, Underworld 4) are currently testing for the second female role in Joseph Kosinski's (Tron Legacy) Horizons/Oblivion.

Tom Cruise and Jessica Chastain (The Debt) are already locked in as the leads. Oddly enough actresses who have been mentioned as possible options for the second role like Olivia Wilde, Brit Marling and Nooi Rapace aren't being listed.

October 26, 2011

Kerry Washington Officially Joins Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained

Deadline reports that actress Kerry Washington (Last King of Scotland, Ray) has finally been confirmed for the lead female role in Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained. It's been rumored since the summer that Kerry was up for the role of Django's wife Broomhilda who is being held captive by Calvin Candie (DiCaprio).

Could Zemo & Strucker Be The Villains In Captain America 2?

It's been long rumored that Captain America villain and leader of the Masters of Evil, Baron Zemo would be featured in Captain America: The First Avenger. Screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely confirmed to IFC that in early versions of the script Zemo and Baron Strucker indeed were involved. However, it seemed like a waste to use both so early in the franchise. It's likely that the two villains could show up in Captain America 2 or future Marvel films.

There were a few classic villains that were planned for the first film, only to be removed in subsequent drafts. The pair previously revealed that evil despot Baron Zemo was in an early draft, but he wasn't the only sinister side character in those versions of the script.

"Baron Strucker was in there for a while, but he wasn't doing enough to justify wasting him in the film," said McFeely. "We certainly tried things, and ended up settling on the more useful Red Skull and Arnim Zola. But they're all still on the table," he teased. 

"There wasn't a sequence with Master Man that ended up on the cutting room floor or anything," laughed Markus. "But there was an endless array of scenes we could've drawn from, and may draw from in the future. I'm not being cryptic when I say that, either - I'm just being a comic book geek. For example, some day, whether it be in an 'Iron Man' movie or a 'Captain America' movie or any other Marvel movie, I want to see M.O.D.O.K. float down the hall." 

Zemo along with creating The Masters of Evil (a group of villains that fight The Avengers) is also responsible for putting together the original Thunderbolts group. The Thunderbolts were similar to the Dark Avengers as they are villains posing as heroes to gain the world's trust and plan to eventually take it over. Other incarnations of the group included villains released from super prisons to reduce their sentences working for SHIELD on different missions. I wouldn't be shocked to see Zemo become a baddie in Avengers 2.

Strucker on the other hand is heavily involved with both Hydra and A.I.M. which could mean that he might be a modern villain that could resurrect Hydra or bring A.I.M. into the forefront. Considering Modok a known member of A.I.M. has been mentioned a few times by the screenwriters. He seems a good bet for Captain America 2 or the Nick Fury film. Hopefully we'll see Madame Hydra ends up alongside Strucker.

Dum Dum Dugan In Captain America 2 & Nick Fury Film?

Recently Neal McDonough was speaking with IAmRogue (via CBM) about his future with Marvel Studios. He mentioned the possibility of showing up in Captain America 2. Being featured in either flashbacks or present day scenes. Neal goes even further and mentions possibilities to include him in the Nick Fury film which has been mentioned since the first Iron Man. Saying the film could be set in the 60's or 70's.

"Yeah the talk now is that they are going to flashback to WWII and without going to much into, because I’m not supposed to say too much at all, but whatever they do I guarantee you this … it’s going to be an awesome movie. The villain is going to be crazy, and it will be really terrific. The origin of Cap being in WWII is definitely paramount to the guys over at Marvel."

"In the origin with Dum Dum, he got a small portion of the super serum himself and he was actually the head of S.H.E.I.L.D. until four or five years ago. So he aged really slowly. He aged quicker than Nick and quicker than Steve Rogers did but he aged quite slowly. He was chronologically frozen him self for ten years. So there are all kinds of stuff that I’ve read in the comic books but who knows how they’re going to do it. I know they are going to go back to WWII in Cap 2. You know in flashbacks but past that I’m not sure. Also what would make me happier than a pig in poop would be to be part of and see Sam Jackson as a ‘60s or ‘70s version of Nick Fury. That would just be awesome. Hopefully we’ll get that one done soon. I know Sam is very excited about it."

In a separate interview with ABC News (via CBM) Neal stated that again he would be alongside Samuel L. Jackson in a Fury movie.

"Oh yeah, Cap 2 is in the works. The script is written and hopefully we will go into production fairly soon. I'm really looking forward to the Nick Fury films. Sam Jackson and myself will be partners in that one. And I know Sam is really excited about doing it. So fingers crossed we start that one up pretty soon."

His character does get exposed to a different super soldier formula known as the infinity formula. That ends up slowing down his aging along with Nick Fury and the Howling Commandos in the comics. If the studio wants more period pieces perhaps focusing on the Cold War in the Fury film or having flashbacks of the Howlers fighting a numerous amount of war campaigns the infinity formula is a good way to do it. It's unknown if Marvel is going to use this avenue but it would be a science fiction way to include the Howling Commandos in present day films.

October 25, 2011

Brad Pitt Joins Steve McQueen's 12 Years A Slave

ScreenDaily reports that Brad Pitt will have a role in Steve McQueen's (Hunger, Shame) 12 Years A Slave. Pitt's Plan B is producing the project that already stars Chiwetel Ejiofor and McQueen's golden boy Michael Fassbender.

Brad is currently having a great wave of projects that he's been choosing by director. I've been anticipating his upcoming projects World War Z, Cogan's Trade and 12 Years A Slave is no exception. This will also be his fourth straight project based on a novel. While his role in the film is unknown he previously worked alongside Fassbender in Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds.

Peter Jackson Confirms That He Will Direct Tintin Sequel, Script Is Done

Originally when it was announced that Peter Jackson and Steven Spielberg would be bringing Tintin to the screen it was envisioned as a trilogy. Spielberg would direct The Secret of The Unicorn while Jackson would handle the second film The Prisoners of The Sun. That was until Peter had to come in and replace Guillermo del Toro on the two Hobbit films. Leaving in question who would direct both sequels. Now there is word from Jackson (via ThePlaylist/THR) himself he will indeed start production on Prisoners when he wraps The Hobbit. He also adds that a script from Anthony Horowitz is done.

The sequel would combine the stories from both Prisoners of The Sun and The Seven Crystal Balls. It's unknown if either Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish would be contributing to the project's screenplay. It would mean that the earliest the film would start production is late 2013 or early 2014.

FIRST LOOK: Chuck Norris, Terry Crews & Dolph Lundgren On Expendables 2 Set

New Girl With The Dragon Tattoo Poster

October 24, 2011

Casey Affleck Joins Ben Affleck's Whitey Bulger Film

Deadline reports that Casey Affleck will have a supporting role in his brother Ben Affleck's Whitey Bulger movie. Casey previously starred in Ben's first directorial effort Gone Baby Gone giving a solid performance earning him credibility as a dramatic actor. The trio first worked together on Good Will Hunting which earned Matt and Ben an Oscar for their script. He also co-starred with Matt in the successful Ocean's trilogy directed by Steven Soderbergh. They confirm that Damon will play Whitey Bulger in the film.

Casey's role is unknown but he's recently played dark characters so it would be easy to see him in the role of gangster or lawman. This could mean other actors that Ben has previously worked with in front and behind the camera could join the cast. I'm hoping names like Jeremy Renner are also in contentions for roles.

FIRST LOOK: Scarlett Johansson In Under The Skin

This project seems to have gone under the radar but Jonathan Glazer's (Sexy Beast, Birth) adaptation of Michael Faber's novel Under The Skin is currently shooting in Scotland. Surprisingly Scarlett Johansson is in the lead playing an alien who takes on an attractive female form to lure human prey in the Scottish Highlands. The rest of the cast is unknown at this point according to ThePlaylist but I wouldn't be surprised if Glazer was hiring local Scottish actors to fill the other roles.

Matt Damon & Ben Affleck Making A Whitey Bulger Bio-Pic

Warner Bros. is really coming out with some seriously interesting projects in the last couple of months. This new one that ThePlaylist (via GQ) mentions sounds like something that could have Oscar contender written all over it. Matt Damon and Ben Affleck are re-teaming for a bio-pic of Boston mobster Whitey Bulgar who was the head of the notorious Winter Hill gang. While there are a number of other Bulger films in development Damon hopes their project will scare off the other guys. The big weight behind their version is that Terence Winter the writer of HBO's Sopranos and Boardwalk Empire will be handling the script with Ben Affleck directing. Not to mention a major studio is backing them.

Damon and Affleck would star in the film but it's unknown if it will be a straight up period piece similar to Goodfellas. Bulger was a major influence on Jack Nicholson's character Frank Costello in Martin Scorsese's The Departed. I wouldn't be shocked to see Martin Scorsese attached as a producer down the line along with familiar faces in supporting roles. I'm beyond exicted to see another crime drama directed by Affleck and having it written by Winter is a giant bonus. I'm a massive fan of Ben as a director and I really wish he sticks to this sort of genre for at least a couple more films. He's been offered more commerical films like Man of Steel and Stephen King's The Stand but I'd prefer he'd stick to these type of movies.

If I had to come up with one actor that needs to be included in this film it's Alec Baldwin. Alec played such an amazing gangster in The Cooler and a ruthless salesman in Glenngary Glen Ross. It would be a shame for him to retire before going all out that a film like this could allow him to do. I felt he was short changed in The Departed since he plays such great villains.

October 23, 2011

Warner Bros. Looking To Hire Writer For Sherlock Holmes 3

It looks like Warner Bros. is hot on their Sherlock Holmes franchise as Deadline reports that they're moving forward with the third installment. The second film Game Of Shadows hasn't even hit theaters but the studio is looking to hire Drew Pearce to pen Sherlock Holmes 3. Pearce recently co-wrote the Iron Man 3 script with director Shane Black. Also, writing The Runaways script for Marvel Studios.

It seems like a good way to push forward a solid trilogy before the heat wears off and director Guy Ritchie looses interest. Ritchie's many other film projects [The Real RockNRolla, Lobo, Dirty Dozen, Sgt. Rock] have been put on hold because of the Holmes series. Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law have previously stated they'd both be on board for a trilogy. It's currently unknown if either Noomi Rapace or Rachel McAdams would be returning for the next installment.

Gary Oldman & Helena Bonham Carter Offered Roles For Akira?

Twitch is reporting that Warner Bros. have offered another two roles for Akira. This time is it's Gary Oldman for the role of the Colonel and Helena Bonham Carter as Lady Miyako. Neither are strangers to genre based projects and are darlings at the studio. Oldman and Carter previously worked together in the Harry Potter franchise. It's not out of the question that these heavy weight actors will end up in the film but it's simiply a rumor at this point. Morgan Freeman had long been rumored for the role that Oldman is being offered. Garrett Hedlund (Tron Legacy) apparently is the front-runner for one of the leads.

October 22, 2011

Universal In Talks To Make Mark Millar's War Heroes

HeatVision reports that Universal Pictures is in negotiations to develop Mark Millar's War Heroes into a film. Previously the project had been with Columbia Pictures but the rights lapsed. The studio is in talks with screenwriters Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer who wrote Conan The Barbarian (2011) and recently handed in a script for Doctor Strange to Marvel Studios. The premises is an alternate America where soldiers are given pills to unlock various superpowers to fight the country's enemies.

This is yet another boost for comic writer/creator Mark Millar who is starting to become the next Stan Lee in the world of comic book films. War Heroes will be his 7th comic book turned into a film. Two movies have already been completed [Kick-Ass, Wanted] and six others in development [Wanted 2, Kick-Ass 2, Nemesis, Superior, The Secret Service, Supercrooks]. It will be interesting to see who they'll get to direct the film.

I wouldn't be shocked to see Justin Lin in contention considering Fast Five/Fast Six writer Chris Morgan is producing. Lin has been rumored/attached previously to Terminator 5, Highlander, Oldboy, The Wolverine and Die Hard 5. Robert Schwentke (RED) also seems like a possbility since he walked away from directing RED 2 and is currently helming another high concept comic book adaptation R.I.P.D. (his second comic book film) for the studio.

Captain America Screenwriters Talk Sequel & Howling Commandos Spin-Off

 While talking with IFC (via ComicBookMovie) screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely talked about Captain America 2 confirming they've completed an outline for the the sequel. Along with seemingly colaberating with Joss Whedon to figure out where Cap's character should be in Captain America 2. Since a few things that likely were planned for the second film are now being included into The Avengers.

McFeely: "We needed to read Joss' 'Avengers' before we could go on and do 'Captain America 2.' We needed to see if he did anything different, character-wise - and he hadn't, he's an excellent writer - but we also needed to see what he had done in terms of Steve poking around the modern day and dealing with it." 

Markus: "So much of Captain America's adventures occur in the present day, so there are a lot of things I'd like to touch on. That said, we did leave the center section of 'Captain America' baggy enough to let him have adventures you didn't see [in the first film]. So, we kind of have enough room to play with [for the sequel]." 

McFeely: "Still, if he had another adventure entirely set in World War II, the stakes are kind of lessened, because you know he survives and you know what happens to Bucky and you know the Howling Commandos survive long enough to have a toast in a bar." 

Markus: "You know Cap wins and you know that whoever he was fighting didn't destroy the world, because you've already seen things that happen after it. So the stakes are, well... But then again, did that bother anyone with the second 'Indiana Jones' movie?" 

I'm a big fan of the first film so I'm excited to see that they're going forward with the sequel with Joe Johnston still expected at the helm. My only concern is that Joss Whedon had added things to the last film's script to incorporate the Avengers and I assume to add humor as well. Whedon is well known for his whitty oneliners which seemed all over The First Avenger. So hopefully Joss is still going to be apart of the screenwriting side along with Markus and McFeely. There also seems a rich story to be told with Winter Soldier whether it's in a sequel or the Howling Commando spin-off.

The pair also mentioned the potential Howling Commandos spin-off that has been rumored for a while now. Which they're open to making and could end up being very similar to Kelly's Heroes and Inglourious Basterds. The latter isn't surprising as Quentin Tarantino took inspiration for The Basterds from The Howling Commandos comics.

McFeely: "They're certainly cool, and in a different movie, we would've certainly had a little more 'Kelly Heroes' or 'Magnificent Seven". thing going on. (Talking about if they had more screen time) 

Markus: "It would've been like 'Inglourious Commandos." 

McFeely: "Personally, I'm a big fan of that type of movie - the ne'er-do-wells banding together to fight a common cause. So I'm open to it, but... well... I'll just say I'm open to it."

I have to admit that I almost enjoyed the scenes with the Howlers more than the solo Cap scenes. So I'd be on board with a Howling Commandos spin-off. Yet, I'm concerned with the amount of spin-off talk considering the laundry list of other original projects at Marvel that have yet to get off the ground. Their has already been talk of spin-offs for Nick Fury, Black Widow, War Machine, Hawkeye and The Warriors Three. I assume it's just way for Marvel to pump up audiences/fans to root for the supporting characters.

Joel Kinnaman & Kit Harington Front-Runners For Arthur & Lancelot

It was surprising when Warner Bros. axed potential remakes of Excalibur from both Bryan Singer (X-Men 1-2, Jack The Giant Killer, Usual Suspects) and Guy Ritchie (Sherlock Holmes 1-2, Snatch) to more forward with Arthur & Lancelot. A new "grounded" take on the classical tale from Wedding Crashers director David Dobkin was chosen instead with a budget around $90 million. It seemed a bit brash considering the talent behind the Excalibur projects but you never know with these things. I never thought comedy director Ruben Fleischer would end up making Gangster Squad. Since Ruben's credits only include Zombieland and 30 Minutes Or Less but it seems like the studio is giving chances to let directors branch out.

There is finally some interesting news casting-wise as ThePlaylist reports that Joel Kinnaman (Snabba Cash, The Killing) and Kit Harington (Game of Thrones) have come out as front-runners for the leads. It's unknown who is expected in what part but there is also a list of other candidates that includes names like Sam Claflin (Pirates 4, Snow White & The Huntsman, Dominic Cooper (Devil's Double, Captain America), Hans Matheson (Sherlock Holmes, Clash of The Titans), Jim Sturgess (50 Dead Men Walking, Cloud Atlas), Ben Walker (Paradise Lost, Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter) and Liam Hemsworth (Hunger Games, Expendables 2). Joel Kinnaman was recently toted as Steven Soderbergh's choice for the second lead in The Man From UNCLE which is being produced by David Dobkin. I expect Kit's rather large international following from Game of Thrones doesn't hurt his chances either.

October 21, 2011

Joseph Gordon-Levitt In Talks For Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained

Variety reports that Joseph Gordon-Levitt is currently in talks to join Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained. The role is unknown but he's previously worked with Leonardo DiCaprio who plays the film's villain Calvin Candie in Christopher Nolan's Inception. Joe has been carefully choosing his directors since Inception with high profile roles in films like The Dark Knight Rises, Rian Johnson's Looper, Jonathan Levine's cancer comedy 50/50 and Steven Spielberg's Lincoln. I've become a big fan of Joseph's performances and the thought of him working with Tarantino is beyond exciting.

The stellar cast already includes Dicaprio, Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, Don Johnson, Laura Cayouette, Dennis Christopher, Gerald McRaney, Michael K. Williams, Tom Savini and M.C. Gainey. Django Unchained is aimed for a December 25th 2012 release date.

Could Joe Cornish Direct Ant-Man?

We've been hearing lots of updates concerning the script of Marvel Studios' Ant-Man which is being written by Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish. The pair previously worked together on Steven Spielberg's The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of The Unicorn that's being produced by Peter Jackson. Last thing we heard is that the duo handed in a second draft which the studio seemed thrilled about. Now word from HitFix is that they're aren't finished the script leading us to believe that a third draft is currently being worked on. Joe also stated Edgar hasn't been announced as the official director and that he would leave all the announcements about the film to him [Wright]. Marvel Studios has neither announced a release date or even a director for the film.

I'm getting the feeling that Joe might be in a better position to direct Ant-Man than Edgar. Cornish is slowly gathering steam as a director with his cult film Attack The Block and unlike Wright doesn't have his plate full of projects. Marvel is notoriously cheap and would likely lock a director into a two picture deal. Something I feel could be too much for Wright who does as much producing as he does directing. Likely wanting the breathing room to make his passion projects such as Baby Driver, Them and World's End along with producing other things. Cornish was recently linked as a candidate to direct A Good Day To Die Hard the fifth film in the Die Hard franchise before John Moore was hired.

Bradley Cooper Front-Runner For Soderbergh's Man From UNCLE

ShowBlitz reports Bradley Cooper (Limitless, Hangover) is now Steven Soderbergh's choice to play Napoleon Solo in The Man From Uncle. It's a big change from previous wanted names for the role like George Clooney who dropped out along with hopefuls Matt Damon, Johnny Depp and Michael Fassbender. It was previously mentioned was that Warner Bros. was keen on bringing in Ryan Gosling for the role of Russian Agent Illya Kuryakin. While Soderbergh wanted up and coming Swedish actor Joel Kinnaman (Dragon Tattoo, Snabba Cash 1-3, Safe House, Killing, Darkest Hour) for the part of Illya. I think since they're hoping to go with Cooper, Gosling seems a better bet as both actors have a rather decent sized following.

Jane Goldman & Matthew Vaughn Writing Script For The Secret Service

HeatVision reports that Matthew Vaughn is indeed developing Mark Millar/Dave Gibbon's future comic release The Secret Service into a film. They also mention that Vaughn along with longtime writing partner Jane Goldman (Woman In Black, The Debt) will be working on the film's script. However, they do say that Vaughn is only supervising the scripwriting on Superior. Goldman and Vaughn have previously worked together on Stardust, Kick-Ass and X-Men First Class. Knowing they'll be writing together again on this project makes me believe that Secret Service could be Vaughn's next film. There has also been talk of Matthew developing Jonathan Ross' comics Golden Age and Turf into films as well, Ross of course is Jane's husband.

October 20, 2011

John Orloff To Write Bryan Singer's Battlestar Galactica

Deadline reports that Jeff Orloff is closing a deal to write the script for Bryan Singer's Battlestar Galactica based on the 70's movie and TV series. Singer recently noted that Battlestar would be his next film after he's done with Jack The Giant Killer. Orloff doesn't have a history with large films but wrote episodes for Band Of Brothers, Zack Snyder's Legend of The Guardians and Anonymous. It will be interesting which take they'll go with and I'm dying to see Singer jump into a full force science fiction action film. I'm also curious to see if they'll be taking inspiration from the recent reboot series.

Trailer For The Flowers Of War Starring Christian Bale

Wachowskis' New Sci-Fi Film Jupiter Ascending Shooting In 2012?

It looks like the Wachowskis are heading back to the world of science fiction with Warner Bros. The directing silbings created the franchise which turned out one the biggest box office successes for an R-rated series. They're currently shooting segments for Cloud Atlas but haven't announced their next full length film. There had been talk of a futuristic version of Robin Hood with Will Smith and a mystery project involving an unappealing story which wasn't getting interest from studios. Deadline reports their next project is titled Jupiter Ascending which is a return to science fiction for the duo. Details are unknown at this point but hopefully like Matrix they'll be thinking outside of the box giving us another classic.

Forest Whitaker Joins The Last Stand

HollywoodReporter says that Kim Jee-Woon's (I Saw The Devil) The Last Stand starring Arnold Schwarzenegger has gained more actors. They report that Oscar winner Forest Whitaker, Johnny Knoxville (Jackass 1-3), Luiz Guzman (Carlito's Way, Out of Sight, Boogie Nights) and Harry Dean Stanton (Alien, Escape From New York) have rounded out the cast. The film's supporting cast already includes Eduardo Noriega, Jaimie Alexander, Zach Gilford, Rodrigo Santoro and Peter Stormare.

Matthew Vaughn Buys Film Rights To Mark Millar's Secret Service

CBM has a press release for a charity auction for Mark Millar's upcoming comic The Secret Service. Similar to Kick Ass and Superior, Millar is giving people who bid the chance to have the characters in the new comic named after them. It's for a great cause so please check it out. Details on the comic are currently unknown but I'm sure they will be announced eventually.

Also, within the press release is the fact that Matthew Vaughn's Marv films have bought the comic's film rights. Vaughn is attached to direct Superior sometime down the line. The legendary comic artist Dave Gibbons will be handling the artwork on Secret Service. Gibbons is best known for his work on Alan Moore's Watchmen and Frank Miller's Martha Washington.

Akira Gets The Greenlight, Garrett Hedlund Front-Runner

Variety reports Warner Bros. have decided to move forward with the adaptation of Akira with a new budget of $90 million. It's a big change from the projected $200 million when Albert Hughes was involved. Jaume Collet-Serra the Spanish director best known for Unknown will be helming the project with Garrett Hedlund (Tron Legacy, Troy) as the front-runner.

Jaume Collet-Serra doesn't instill excitement but Garrett could be interesting. Otherwise my expectations for Akira have dropped tenfold. The only good thing seems like the digital effects will be very limited with a budget like this which could mean they'll go more practical. Let's just hope they end up pursing solid actors to fill out other roles.

October 17, 2011

Battlestar Galactica Next For Bryan Singer?

SFX (via ThePlaylist) spoke to Bryan Singer who is currently in post-production with Jack The Giant Killer for Warner Bros. which I'm dying to see a trailer for. Singer confirmed again that his Excalibur remake setup at Warner Bros. has indeed been axed. This might be a good thing for fans of cylons as Singer is now focusing on his Battlestar Galactica film for Universal. This gives further fuel that Singer won't be directing X4 or New Mutants anytime soon for Fox.

“Yeah, unfortunately [‘Exalibur’] is no longer going to happen,” Singer said. “I was really enthused to do it. I’m a fan of John Boorman’s movie and it was my intention to get it going after ‘Jack The Giant Killer’ was completed. The project was with Warner Bros and what happened is that another King Arthur project was brought to them during that time. Basically, it was just more ready to go into production than ours was. That is why our version of ‘Excalibur’ ended up being negated. But, when that happened, it allowed me to go straight into developing ‘Battlestar Galactica’ – which I think will be really exciting.”

Jason Statham To Headline Transformers 4 & 5?

Variety reports that Michael Bay and producer Steven Spielberg are in talks to make more installments to the Transformers franchise. They also state that Transformers 4 and Transformers 5 could very well shoot at the same time. Considering how much money these movies make the studio it would make sense they would want to release two films soon. While the quality of the films are suspect in my opinion having the worst voice/acting and overall dialog in a blockbuster series. There is a glimmer of hope that a new direction could be in the cards. British action star Jason Statham has been rumored to be taking over the franchise from Shia.

It seems like a similar move made by studios to bring in Dwayne Johnson to boost the action-creditability of G.I. Joe 2 and Fast Five. Shia is a man in a boy's body at this point and hasn't really ever been believable as the film's leading man, none of the male actors have. The studio would be wise to go more full on action. So that Sam's side stories don't effect the pacing and the less comic relief the better. It would be nice if they hired a professional to run and jump around while being able to fire off guns.

I can't say that I'll ever be looking forward to more Transformers films but that might light a fire under the studio, since I'm not the only hater of the franchise. There are also people who enjoyed the first film but got burned by the terrible sequels. If Bay is able to make a "serious" Transformers film pumping in new blood with actual action stars it might turn my opinion around. However, with the last installment it didn't seem that Bay actually listened to what fans and critics alike hated about the first sequel. So they very well could continue what's been dragging down the quality.

Full Trailer For The Divide

October 16, 2011

Doctor Strange Part Of Marvel's Phase 2?

Recently during the New York Comic-Con Marvel Studios' Kevin Feige confirmed that Iron Man 3 would be the first step in moving forward with Marvel's phase two leading to Avengers 2. Feige gave a brief statement to IGN which might give fans hope that Doctor Strange could be involved in the new phase as well. There have been rumors of Benedict Cumberbatch (War Horse, Sherlock Holmes) and Javier Bardem (Bond 23, No Country For Old Men) being linked for the film.

" I love Doc Strange, I think I can finally say sooner than later....I would love to see him part of phase two."

Hemsworth, Hiddleston, Dallas & Branagh Comment On Patty Jenkins

Tom Hiddleston (Loki), Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Joshua Dallas (Fandral), even producer and former director Kenneth Branagh weigh in on new director Patty Jenkins.  It seems like an overwhelming wave of positivity coming from the cast and it sounds Marvel is excited by her take on the material. Thor 2 which is slated for a November 15th 2013 release.

Tom Hiddleston: "[She is] an absolutely amazing director" and that 'Monster' is "one of my favorite films. I'm so excited that Marvel has given the reigns to a director who has such of an incredible grasp of story, performance and complexity. I think her handling of the characters and the arc of the story in 'Monster' and what the story is about on the whole is really, really fascinating. I'm sure it's going to take us on another adventure somewhere that's entertaining and funny in some capacity, and the fact that Patty is at the helm is really, really exciting."

Chris Hemsworth:  “She has a great take on the story and a solid grasp on that kind of universe,” Hemsworth said in his meeting with Jenkins she seemed like a filmmaker worthy of picking up the franchise’s cinematic hammer “Branagh read every comic book he could get his hands on,” Hemsworth said. “She also looked like she had done her homework.”

 Kenneth Branagh: "Monster was, I think, an absolutely sensational film. I think that she’s a great talent. As a possibility in the mix, I think that’s a tremendous idea."

Joshua Dallas: "We are! We are planning a return to Asgard, next year. Thor 2 is happening. A great director called Patty Jenkins is directing the sequel. Ken [Branagh] is not directing, which is obviously a huge shame, because he came in and created that world and created the language and the look of the whole thing. But he's kind of set it all up for us and I think he's staying on as a producer. But yeah, there's going to be some more adventures in the Nine Realms."

"I haven't yet, no. But apparently Marvel are in love with her and I'm sure she is going to be a really exciting and interesting choice. She's done some great work before. Marvel always have a really good idea for those directors that are going to come in and they may seem out of left field, but they always have a plan and they're always really smart. And that's what's so great about working for Marvel, because not only are they movie producers and they make these great movies, but they're comic book guys and they love it and they love the characters and they love the stories."

Edgar Wright's Ant-Man A Team Spy Film?

We've been getting a few hints on what we can expect from Marvel Studios' Ant-Man which is being written by Edgar Wright (Scott Pilgrim, Hot Fuzz) and Joe Cornish (Attack The Block, Tintin). From what is known we could be seeing a group of Ant-Men in a high-tech spy heist film. This makes a lot of sense considering neither Pym or Wasp won't be showing up in Avengers.

It will include at least two of the Ant-Men including Dr. Hank Pym and burglar turned-hero Scott Lang (2nd Ant-Man) which was confirmed by MTV. Also the film's leading lady Janet van Dyne wears a similar suit and is known as the Wasp. It would be nice to see another heroine in the film perhaps Lang's daughter Cassie. She becomes a Young Avenger known as Stature who shares the same powers as her father.
ThePlaylist was able to speak with Joe Cornish which he became coy when the question of Ant-Men was raised again. However, they mention several "Ant-Men" are rumored which could mean SHIELD Agent Eric O'Grady (3rd Ant-Man) could be in the film as well.

"We had heard that at one point Cornish and Wright were going to put several of the Ant-Men (meaning people that had put on superhero scientist Hank Pym’s suit) into the script, meaning that they could have thrown in our personal favorite Ant-Man – Eric O’Grady, low-level S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent turned shadily “Irredeemable” Ant Man. "

Cornish smiled at our implication and said, slyly, “No comment.” He then started to say something, “Well, you know…” before shutting himself off with another “No comment.”

Edgar Wright talked to VanityFair about his vision for the film which will be a "high-tech spy heist film". The espionage angle gives further fuel that a team could be put together. Wright had been in contention to direct Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol which has a similar theme minus superpowers. I wouldn't be shocked to see Ant-Man closer to Bond or Mission Impossible than any of the other Marvel films.

"I think it's a really interesting high-concept idea. [...] I know there's a big stigma attached to it, mostly because every movie about shrinking has been about people in peril. I think it'd be great to do a shrinking film about a bad-ass secret agent. [...] Even something like The Incredible Shrinking Man, which is a fantastic film, is about a guy in trouble. But this is going to be nothing like that. It's essentially a high-tech spy heist film with somebody with a very particular power."

Christopher McQuarrie To Direct Rubicon Based On Seven Samurai

Deadline reports that screenwriter Christopher McQuarrie is setting up a deal for his third directorial effort Rubicon. The project is based on his graphic novel which is largely inspired by Akira Kurosawa's Seven Samurai. Instead of samurais and bandits the heroes are Navy SEALS while the villains are the Taliban.

McQuarrie is no stranger to this type of genre he won an Oscar for his work on The Usual Suspects and did a decent writing job on Valkyrie. He's currently shooting his second film One Shot with Tom Cruise in the lead. Also writing scripts for Jack The Giant Killer, The Wolverine and Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol. While I'm on board for his writing abilites and this project's concept. I'll have to see One Shot before getting my hopes up since his first film had major pacing issues.

Matt Reeves In Talks To Direct Twilight Zone For Warner Bros.

Deadline reports that Matt Reeves (Let Me In, Cloverfield) is Warner Bros' pick to direct their new Twilight Zone film. Previously names like Christopher Nolan, Michael Bay, Alfonso Cuaron (Prisoner of Azkaban, Children of Men, Gravity) and Rupert Wyatt (Rise of The Planet of The Apes) had been in the mix. 

Reeves had been a contender to helm both Man of Steel and The Wolverine. He's currently also attached to direct a film based on 8 O'Clock In The Morning which inspired John Carpenter's They Live. The new Zone film will tell one single story unlike the previous movie which had segments made by different directors. They also mention it will be science fiction in nature with the feel of being from the world of the Twilight Zone. So I'm expecting a lot of bizarre twists in the story and a large reveal in the end.

Warner Bros. To Decide On The Fate Of Akira Soon

ShowBlitz reports that the studio is going to be making to decision to greenlight their Akira adaptation or not. The project has had a long history of problems loosing two of it's directors and testing many actors but nothing came from it. Names like Michael Fassbender (First Class, Prometheus, 300), James McAvoy (First Class, Wanted), Andrew Garfield (Amazing Spider-Man, Social Network), Keanu Reeves (Matrix Trilogy, Point Break, Speed), Garrett Hedlund (Tron Legacy), Chris Pine (Star Trek 1-2, This Means War), Justin Timberlake (Social Network) and Joaquin Phoenix have been linked for testing.

Fans had been angry over the whitewash casting along with moving the location from Tokyo to Manhattan. It's budget was also too large likely since the whole movie is a gamble at this point. The studio wouldn't want to spend too much money if the fanbase isn't there. Last summer they gambled with high-concept Green Lantern which turned out to be a critical and financial blunder.

Marvel's Kevin Feige Gives Brief Update At New York Comic-Con

During The Avengers pannel at New York Comic-Con Marvel Studios' president Kevin Feige gave a brief update on future films. CinemaBlend who was there live-blogging and Feige stated that Iron Man 3 would be the first step toward Avengers 2. Hopefully this will be done a little more quieter than in the second film which got it's story ruined by too many hints for upcoming films.

"We're in pre-production on a movie called Iron Man 3 right now. We've got a great director called Shane Black who's taking the reins. Iron Man 3 will be the first in what we're calling phase 2 that will hopefully results in an Avengers 2."

October 15, 2011

William Monahan Writing/Directing Remake Of Becket

This news is almost a year old but it's still worth mentioning. Deadline reports that William Monahan's next directorial effort will be Becket based on the play by Jean Anouilh which he'll also write. Monahan is best known for writing the Departed which earned him an Oscar. I loved Ridley Scott's Kingdom of Heaven which William wrote to see him revisit this genre is exciting. That being said Monahan's first film London Boulevard had a star-studded cast but was disappointing overall.

Better Look At Cobie Smulders As Maria Hill In Avengers

Steve McQueen's 12 Years A Slave Adds Fassbender

ShowBlitz originally reported that Steve McQueen's next film would be 12 Years A Slave. It tells the true story of Solomon Northrup, a New York citizen who’s kidnapped in Washington in 1841 and rescued from a cotton plantation in Louisiana in 1853. Chiwetel Ejiofor (Children Of Men) is playing the lead role and is slowly developing a serious acting presence similar to Michael Fassbender. McQueen is looking to add his good luck charm as Variety reports Fassbender is going to have a role in the film.

Steve McQueen came out of nowhere for me when his stunning film Hunger was released a few years ago. It was a excellent debut film for the new writer/director and it showed off Michael Fassbender's serious dramatic acting chops. Their latest film Shame is looking like it could be the film to beat during award season. The paring of McQueen and Fassbender is being compared to the early relationship of Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro, which is fair to say.

October 13, 2011

Tom Savini Joins Django Unchained

ThePlaylist has picked up a on report that special effects guru and genre character actor Tom Savini has joined Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained. Savini is a regular in Robert Rodriguez's films with roles in Planet Terror, Machete and From Dusk Till Dawn written/co-starring Quentin. The film already stars Jamie Foxx, Leonardo DiCaprio, Christoph Waltz, Samuel L. Jackson, Dennis Christopher, Kurt Russell, Laura Cayouette,  M.C. Gainey, Don Johnson and Michael K. Williams.