August 30, 2012
Columbia/Sony Pictures and producer Avi Arad (Spider-Man 1-3, Blade 1-3, X-Men 1-3) have announced (via SlashFilm) along with Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima that a film based on the iconic video game franchise is on the way. Metal Gear Solid follows Solid Snake, a retired soldier who infiltrates a nuclear weapons disposal facility to neutralize the terrorist threat from FOXHOUND, a renegade special forces unit. Avi's other current video game film projects include Mass Effect at Legendary Picutures/Warner Bros and Uncharted. Let's just hope this doesn't end up the next Resident Evil.
Hideo gave his wishlist of actors that included Matt Damon, Hugh Jackman and Ben Affleck. Not mention dropping the name of Christopher Nolan as his dream director. Nolan is unlikely as he's a loyal director for Warner Bros. and wouldn't jump ship to Sony. Affleck is in the same boat as he's making his mark as a director with WB as well. However, Nolan hasn't officially signed on to his next film . If he did make MSG he could develop Solid Snake into his own version of Bond set in a high-tech globetrotting action genre.
Previously, it had been rumored that Christian Bale had been wanted for the lead role of Snake.
August 29, 2012
Deadline reports that Michael Keaton (Batman, Jackie Brown) has landed the villain role in Robocop. The role originally had been linked to Hugh Laurie but has since gone to Keaton. The rest of the cast includes Joel Kinnaman (The Killing, Snabba Cash), Samuel L. Jackson, Gary Oldman, Abbie Cornish, Jennifer Ehle, Jay Baruchel and Michael K. Williams.
ShockTillYouDrop reports that Ryan Gosling will be making his directorial debut with a horror film titled How To Catch A Monster. The film will see his Drive co-star Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) as the lead character Billy. It will be interesting to see if working twice with Nicolas Winding Refn will have an influence on Ryan's shooting style.
"Elements of fantasy noir, and suspense into a modern day fairytale. Set against the surreal dreamscape of a vanishing city, Billy, a single mother of two, is swept into a macabre and dark fantasy underworld while her teenage son discovers a secret road leading to an underwater town. Both Billy and Bones must dive deep into the mystery, if their family is to survive."
ThinkMcflyThink (via CBM) tweeted a couple more names added to Warner Bros' list of possible directors for Justice League. We've previously heard names like Ben Affleck (Gone Baby Gone, The Town, Argo) and The Wachowskis (Cloud Atlas, Matrix 1-3) in the running. However, some uninspired directors such as Brett Ratner (Rush Hour, X3) and McG (Terminator Salvation) are being bunched into in the group. Some other interesting names include studio darling Zack Snyder (Man of Steel, Watchmen, 300) and Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland, Gangster Squad). The latter seemingly becoming a studio favourite in his own right. I feel The Wachowskis, Ruben and Zack have the best shot here. Zack is head of the pack in my opinion. As he was able to pull off Watchmen while the film could have been a total disaster it ended up a solid attempt.
Today, we learned that Joss Whedon would be putting together a television series based on Marvel's S.H.I.E.L.D. for ABC. The odd part of this announcement is that it's going straight to pilot while the Hulk pilot has yet to be greenlit. My opinion is, Marvel might have axed their plans for a Hulk series after the massive success of The Avengers. Along with the call from fans for another Hulk film. Mark Ruffalo and Joss Whedon have already teased plans already being in motion around the time of Avengers' release in May.
The Hulk series seemed to be a giant headache for both ABC and Marvel. Considering how difficult it is to develop a compelling/cost effective show that included a good amount of CGI. Effects, that aren't cheap to begin with and could end up looking terrible. I believe that Marvel could have pushed S.H.I.E.L.D. into production to cover their asses with ABC to fill the pilot slot left by Hulk. Plus, why throw away perfectly solid plot points that could be used for the film franchise in a TV series?
Guillermo del Toro (Hellboy 1-2, Blade 2, Pacific Rim) had been attached to direct the series pilot but is likely in talks to helm the film instead. The writer/director has had a long standing history with Marvel starting with making Blade 2 for New Line. He was also in talks for years to direct Doctor Strange. However, with recent talk from Marvel producers that a new Hulk film is being aimed for a 2015 release date (after Avengers 2?). This is all speculation on my part but I wouldn't doubt that a script from Joss Whedon (who mentioned interest in writing the film) with Guillermo del Toro directing enough to bring new life to the Hulk franchise. Del Toro has a bunch of projects in development but has dropped films before to focus on passion projects.
August 28, 2012
HeatVision reports that David Faison (Scrubs, Clueless) has joined Kick-Ass 2 as Doctor Gravity.
Andy Nyman (Severance) has also confirmed via his website that he will indeed play a villain The Tumor in Kick-Ass 2. The character is a member of the villain team The Toxic Mega-Cunts lead by Motherfucker formerly Red Mist.
It's good news for Whedon and Marvel fans as Disney/ABC announces via Deadline that Joss Whedon will write, produce and possibly direct a SHIELD pilot. The series will see his longtime writing collaborators Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen also involved with the project. No word if the likes of Samuel L. Jackson (cameos?) or the more TV friendly Cobie Smulders will be appearing on the series. This seemingly gives the impression that Marvel Studios won't be pursuing a SHIELD film and will likely be absorbed into the Captain America and Avengers franchises.
It's likely that actors such as Eliza Dushku (Buffy, Dollhouse), Summer Glau (Serenity, The Unit, Terminator) and Adam Baldwin (Firefly, Chuck) along with other loyal Joss Whedon cast members could be involved with the pilot.
I'm a little late on this news but French actress Stephanie Sozstak (R.I.P.D., We Bought A Zoo, Devil Wears Prada) has joined the stellar cast of Iron Man 3. It was announced at Comic-Con during the Marvel pannel. While her character hasn't been revealed it's possible that she's been cast Whitney Frost (Madame Masque). Emily Blunt had been linked for the role before the film begun it's casting so it's possible they've just cast another actress. However, there's a bit of a link between Frost and Pepper becoming Rescue so Marvel could be holding that back for Iron Man 4. Not to mention the two other large villains Killian (Guy Pearce) and The Mandarin (Ben Kingsley) already in place, it might be too crowded. That being said, it's also possible she might have been cast as Tony's quick witted secretary Kathleen Rennie. Other speculation place her as a possible candidate for Janet van Dyne (The Wasp) who could be introduced in the film.
Deleted scenes for Joss Whedon's Avengers are rolling out online and this alternative opening gives hints to Maria Hill taking over SHIELD. She basically throws Nick Fury under the bus to the World Counsel. While it was likely cut because the used introduction was more appropriate for the film. My impression is that this will be further explored in Captain America: The Winter Soldier with Fury possibly pushed out as SHIELD director by Maria Hill. Perhaps, starting to plant the seeds of Civil War.
August 27, 2012
So it's somewhat been confirmed that Guardians of The Galaxy will be the lead in for Avengers 2. Cosmic villain Thanos was teased at the end of Avengers and the Guardians have links to the Mad Titan sort of a lock that he'll be the baddie for that film first. Eventually, having Thanos and Mistress Death the main villains for Avengers 2. Fans had been upset that the less popular Chitauri were chosen over the Skrulls as Loki's army (thanks to Thanos pulling the strings). It's likely that Thanos could end up using the more dangerous Skrulls to conquer Earth if he needs a stronger force. Also, two possible additions to the Avengers lineup have links to the Skrulls.
The Mad Titan is planning on creating his own empire by conquering the universe. To do this he's going to need his own army which likely will see the Chitauri being replaced with a stronger group. Considering how easily they were defeated by the Avengers. Thanos has used the Skrulls for his own means in the past fuelling the Kree and Skrull war on Earth. It wouldn't be hard to imagine him using the shape-shifting Skrulls to obtain the infinity gems in Guardians and then have them infiltrate the Avengers and SHIELD to prepare his invasion of Earth and Asgard (for the infinity gauntlet/cosmic cube). Joss has been talking covertly about a smaller sequel. Perhaps he could end up making it more like a thriller ala Ten Little Indians/The Thing which could be interesting. Having the Skrull force in smaller numbers than the overboard amount of Chitauri in the first film.
The Skrulls main threats is their advanced technology which enables them to reproduce superpowers and abilities. This could be a very dangerous combo if they're able to make a group of super soldiers, iron men and godlike goliaths. Throw in the fact they can make themselves look like anyone at anytime and you've got a much superior force compared to the Chitauri. Not to mention a good way to lead into the war with the Kree or introducing them (along with Captain Marvel/Ms. Marvel) to begin with if they're not already mentioned in Guardians. This could also be a great way to have at the very least cameos from Wolverine and Spider-Man in the sequel.
Having the Skrulls could also be a way to introduce audiences to Black Panther and Wakanda. Panther fans and Marvel fans alike were shocked Panther wasn't added to the Phase Two lineup. T'Challa was rumored for an introduction in Captain America: The Winter Soldier but nothing has been confirmed. However, if the Skrulls end up in Avengers 2 they could show up in Wakanda first to steal their advanced technology and vibranium for their own means. Recently the Skrulls tried to go up against Black Panther and the Wakanda army, having their asses handed to them. It could be a great way to have Black Panther join the Avengers team.
Another possible addition could be Hydra spy turned SHIELD Agent/Avenger Jessica Drew (Spider-Woman) joining the group only to be found as being Veranke the leader of the Skrulls in disguise. It would be an obvious one but her inclusion would make a great complex female character with powers which the franchise is currently lacking. While it's likely the female lead (Anna Kendrick) in Captain America: The Winter Soldier is Sharon Carter, another possibility is Jessica. That could be a great setup if Steve's fellow soldier (love interest?) turns out to be the enemy the entire time.
August 26, 2012
According to MovieHole Ben Affleck isn't the only high profiled director Warner Bros. is pursuing to direct Justice League. They name The Wachowskis (Matrix) as possible candidates to make DC's answer to The Avengers. Apparently, the studio loves their experimental film Cloud Atlas and believe the duo have what it takes to make a summer spectacle while developing the characters properly. The Wachowskis are an inspired choice considering The Matrix was a massive ode to anime and manga material. I can only imagine what they could do within the DC Universe and given the time/freedom to make their own vision. I assume that they would end up with creative control and a complete re-casting of the entire hero lineup will happen. Meaning, JL won't have any direct links to the Nolan Batman films, Man of Steel or even Green Lantern.
What do you think of this directing rumor? Is it a mistake or could the Wachowskis use their skills to create the next Avengers?
August 25, 2012
At the moment casting is in full swing for both Thor: The Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier. However, we haven't heard anything on Guardians of The Galaxy since they're still trying to wrangle James Gunn as it's director. I've come up with a few of my own casting choices for the game-changing superhero project that will see Marvel enter the off-world (also set in future?) science fiction epic genre. Guardians has the potential to be the next Star Wars for the studio as it would open the door to the cosmic world which has only been hinted to in previous films.
NATHAN FILLION AS STARLORD
BOB HOSKINS AS ROCKET RACCOON
GEMMA ARTERTON AS GAMORA
TERRY CREWS AS DRAX
JEFFREY WRIGHT AS GROOT
STEPHEN DILLANE AS THANOS
CHARLIE HUNNAM AS ADAM WARLOCK
JASON MOMA AS RONAN
CAREY MULLIGAN AS PHYLA (QUASAR/CAPTAIN MARVEL)
Do you like these choices? Are they inspired casting or way-off the mark? Feel free to add your own thoughts in the comments below.
August 24, 2012
Deadline reports that talks with Hugh Laurie to play the villain in Robocop have broken down. It was expected Hugh would play Dick Jones an evil corrupt company executive who is slighted by the creation of Robocop who threatens his side businesses. A group of backup actors will likely now be contacted they name Clive Owen (Sin City, Children of Men) as one of the possible people. The current cast includes Joel Kinnaman, Gary Oldman, Samuel L. Jackson, Abbie Cornish, Jay Baruchel, and Jackie Earle Haley. Other possible additions include Jennifer Ehle and Michael K. Williams.
August 23, 2012
Eli Roth has given an update to BehindTheThrills about the current status of his horror project Thanksgiving. Roth has hired the writing duo of Christopher D. Ford and Jeff Watts to finish the script Eli and his writing partner Jeff Rendell had been working on. The pair have worked together for The Onion before putting together a faux trailer of their own for Clown, which had Roth's name attached to it (he was never involved). It got his attention and the two have been tasked to round out the Thanksgiving script. Ford recently wrote Frank And Robot while Watts is gearing up to direct Clown with Eli as it's newly appointed producer.
"[Thanksgiving] is gonna happen. I’m working with the Clown writers on it. We have a call scheduled tomorrow afternoon. Jeff Rendell, my co-writer on it, we have a very extensive treatment. We finally cracked the story and figured out how to really make it scary, and the reason to do it. I’m really excited about it. The Clown writers wrote one of the best scripts I’ve ever read, and before Jon Watts starts shooting Clown he’s got a window, and Chris Ford, his movie Robot & Frank just opened, Chris and John are going to write the screenplay with me and my writing partner Jeff. So we’ll have a draft soon."
The faux trailer for Thanksgiving was originally meant as a one-off favor to Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez to give their Grindhouse double feature some classic cheesy trailers to go with it. Along with Machete, Thanksgiving became the favorite of the group. A majority of the cast was made of background actors from Europe that were featured in Hostel II. Roth currently has the Dracula flick Harker coming up next for Warner Bros. and along with his South American set horror film The Green Inferno afterwards. It's possible he could end up directing sometime after Harker is completed in late 2013.
Deadline also says that Paramount is pursuing Tom Hardy (Inception, Lawless, Dark Knight Rises) for their Jack Ryan spinoff Without Remorse. Hardy is about to begin production on George Miller's Mad Max: Fury Road alongside Charlize Theron for Warner Bros. Hardy is likely getting lots of franchise offers so we'll see if this one pans out. Kevin Costner is also wanted for a part in the film.
Keira Knightley has now been confirmed by Deadline for the female lead in the Jack Ryan reboot which stars Chris Pine (Star Trek 1-2) and directed by Kenneth Branagh (Thor, Hamlet). Kenneth will also be playing the film's villain with Kevin Costner also wanted for a key part. Kevin's role would also include his own spinoff franchise Without Remorse.
Showblitz reports that British television actress Charlotte Riley has joined Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt in All You Need Is Kill.
A Vietnamese newspaper (via CBM) has what appears to be possible confirmation that Oscar nominated actress Anna Kendrick (50/50, Up In The Air) just might be the front-runner for the female lead in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. They seemingly have an interview with co-director Anthony Russo praising the young actor. Kendrick had been linked along with Felicity Jones and Imogen Poots as candidates for the role that could end being that of SHIELD Agent Sharon Carter. Chris Evans had previously worked with Kendrick on Edgar Wright's Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World, Wright is also tied up with Marvel to make Ant-Man. Anna is mostly known for her quirky roles which began with the high school debating indie Rocket Science. She would later earn a Best Supporting Actress nomination for her performance in Up In The Air. It will be interesting to see her take on a more action driven project like Winter Soldier.
The sequel has been dubbed a political thriller that follows the events of The Avengers likely focusing on the tention between SHIELD and The World Counsel. Along with seeing how Cap is adapting to life in the 21st Century. We know that Winter Solider (Bucky) will end up one of the villains and that The Falcon (Anthony Mackie) will be added to the supporting lineup. There had been talk of Black Widow and Hawkeye also being involved but that hasn't been officially announced yet. However, Samuel L. Jackson has been confirmed to reprise the role of Nick Fury.
August 22, 2012
Variety has announced that Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Oz, Lost, Bourne Identity) has finally landed a Marvel role as he's joined the cast of Thor: The Dark World. Adewale will play dark elf Algrim The Strong better known as Kurse. The character works with and wants to kill Malekith The Accursed, the villain of the film played by Christopher Eccleston. It's a solid sounding confirmation that the dark elves will likely be the only villains of the sequel with Loki on the sidelines. Previously, Adewale had been campaigning for the role of Black Panther.
Variety reports that Japanese actor Ken Watanabe (Batman Begins, Inception, Last Samurai) will star in Warner Bros. Japan's remake of Clint Eastwood's Oscar winning western epic Unforgiven titled Yurusarezaru Mono. The film will be re-envisioned with samurai instead of grizzled cowboys. The original dealt with a retired gun fighter/killer hired for one last bloody job. Ken will be in the lead with Lee Sang-il directing. Everyone should keep an eye out for this one as it will likely end up becoming awards bait when it's released.
For as long as Japanese cinema has been around Hollywood has been remaking classic samurai films as western adaptations. It's going to be very interesting to see how this one will turn out as it comes from the same Japanese studio that gave us Outrage.
Lionsgate (via ThePlaylist) has finally confirmed that British actor Sam Claflin (Pirates 4, Snow White And The Huntsman) has landed the role of Finnick Odair in Hunger Games: Catching Fire.
Director Len Wiseman (Total Recall, Underworld 1-2) talked to CBM about leaving Iron Man and reveals he's still in contact with Marvel. This gives the impression that Len could be able to make an action film like Die Hard 4 without massive amounts of blood and gore, could end up getting at one of their budding franchises in development. So, what Marvel films could Wiseman be a perfect fit for?
"Oh man, superheroes... You know, I think a lot of the superheroes that I would be interested in, a lot of them have been done. I was involved with Iron Man for about seven months after Underworld 2. I was involved with Marvel and Iron Man, and I was really excited about that one and honestly, I think at that time, there was a concern that I was too dark of a director because I had only directed a few movies, and at that time, I'd only directed Underworld and Underworld 2. And Underworld 2 was very violent, very gory, very dark and I think it freaked them out a little bit that I was too dark of a director. It wasn't until after Die Hard 4.0 came out, which is a much lighter tone, much more fun, that Marvel called me up again..."
BLACK WIDOW: Wiseman's Underworld franchise which he co-created has cranked four successful installments with no end in sight. All of his films feature strong female characters that aren't just eye candy but can kick some ass and take a punch. A perfect combo for a Black Widow solo movie since a script has been in place for years which was recently re-written by Nicole Perlman (Guardians of The Galaxy). Considering they have a lead and a script in place, adding a director for a possible 2015 release date following Avengers 2 isn't hard to imagine. We already got a hint to Natasha's violent past with Loki's speech about her. It could be interesting to see her past coming back to haunt her or just have her going on smaller scaled adventures. 2014 is looking to be become the first year that Marvel might just be able to start rolling out three films a year. Phase Three will likely involve Widow, Panther, Strange and Inhumans.
SHIELD: This one has been in development for a while as well. The only thing is that the events concerning SHIELD in Avengers would be continued in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. It's possible that that they might shelve the project completely and just keep it the connective tissue of the Marvel Cinematic Universe having SHIELD as a background player in the films.
HAWKEYE: Jeremy Renner is on the minds of audiences thanks to the successes of Avengers, Mission Impossible and Bourne Legacy. A Hawkeye film seems more likely than SHIELD as Renner could bring out audiences. Not to mention the character was only slightly explored in Avengers as he was a supporting villain for the majority of the movie. Barton is also a master in most weapons and highly skilled fighter leading up to him to take on the persona of Ronin. It could be interesting to see him partner up with Mockingbird, who becomes something of a love interest as well.
August 21, 2012
South African actress Alice Krige (Chariots of Fire) best known for her performance as the Borg Queen in the Star Trek franchise has revealed during a Trek panel (via CBM) that she'll have a small part in Thor: The Dark World. The role is unknown but speculation has moved towards Alflyse the queen of the dark elves. My personal belief is that she could be making an appearance/cameo as Hela. It would be interesting to see Marvel introduce Hela as the real mother of Loki and explore that dynamic.
Deadline reports that Marvel Studios has officially confirmed that Kat Dennings will be reprising the role of Darcy Lewis for Thor: The Dark World. The role is apparently going to be expanded this time. Originally, it was up in the air if Darcy would be back as the actress hadn't been contacted or even listed on early credits for the next installment. I wouldn't be shocked to see her develop a relationship with Fandral (Zachary Levi) at some point in the sequel. Nothing is really known about the sequel besides Scottish actor Christopher Eccelson will be playing dark elf villain Malekith The Accursed in the film.
THR reports that actress Lindy Booth (Cry Wolf, Dawn of The Dead) is set to play Justice Forever member Night-Bitch in Kick-Ass 2.
August 20, 2012
Deadline reports that Jim Carrey has been offered the role of The Colonel in Kick-Ass 2. The character is a former gangster turned vigilante that creates the superhero group Justice Forever. Jim hasn't taken the offer but it would likely boost his credibility with audiences. Plus he could tons of fun as did Nic Cage playing an Adam West inspired Big Daddy.
An an interesting casting rumor has begun to spread. It supposes that Canadian actor Nathan Fillon (Firefly, Castle) could be already cast as Star-Lord in Guardians of The Galaxy. Fillon is no stranger to either Joss Whedon and possible director James Gunn. Starring in Whedon's first feature Serenity and Gunn's Slither. There had been fan casting linking Nathan for Ant-Man but it's possible that Fillon could be heading into space again instead. The actor previously stated he wanted no part of Ant-Man, was this the first hint?