February 6, 2015
Deadline reports that four actresses are in the mix for the female lead in Tim Miller's Deadpool. The film is the X-Men spin-off that has Ryan Reynolds reprising the role of Wade Wilson the sane alter-ego of the mutant mercenary Deadpool.
The they include Morena Baccarin (Serenity, V, Homeland, Firefly), Taylor Schilling (Orange Is The New Black, The Overnight), Crystal Reed (Teen Wolf, Crush) and Rebecca Rittenhouse (The Red Band Soceity). It was previously reported that T.J. Miller and Ed Skrien were in talks for roles as well.
I have to admit I'll be rooting for both Taylor and Rebecca for the unnamed role.
The role is either going to be mutant prostitute Vanessa Geraldine Carlysle aka Copycat who becomes romantically involved with Wilson or fellow mercenary Neena Thurman aka Domino.
In the original script, Copycat was the female lead but since the extensive rewrites they could have replaced her with the more fully formed character like Domino which of course could further help setup X-Force. Neena becoming an X-Men member on the X-Force team.
In a shocking twist Fox and Miller could try to include both mutant ladies.
Production is expected to startup soon in Vancouver Canada with a release date of February 12th, 2016.
Just a moment ago Variety reported that Sony was in early talks with Jennifer Lawrence to play the female lead in Passengers. Only for The Wrap to chime-in with their own scoop that Chris Pratt is also in the mix for the male lead.
Set in the future aboard a spacecraft, “Passengers” follows a man who awakens early from a cryogenic slumber and to spare himself from being lonely, decides to wake up a female passenger, which is the role Lawrence is circling.
Two high-profiled actors that were recently titled the biggest box office earners of 2014 in one film screams heat, something to consider during it's early casting days.
Pratt has been linked to a bunch of different films including a possible reboot of Indiana Jones. Lawrence was also mentioned as a desired addition for Sony's Ghostbusters reboot, so they've previously talked to the actress about projects.
Keanu Reeves was previously mentioned for the male lead a while back but Pratt seems a bit more age appropriate for lead like Lawrence.
SOURCE: THE WRAP
Variety is reporting that Jennifer Lawrence is early talks with Sony to star as the lead in their sci-fi romance drama Passengers. The film is a from a spec-script penned by Prometheus and Doctor Strange screenwriter Jon Spahits with Oscar nominated director Morten Tyldum (Intimidation Game, Headhunters) attached.
Set on a spacecraft in the future with thousands of passengers making an interstellar voyage to a distant new planet. One passenger awakens from cryogenic sleep 90 years before anyone else and decides to wake up a female passenger, sparking the beginning of a love story.
This would be a huge deal for both Sony and Lawrence, as it's possible the film could end-up being the next Gravity if handled properly. Jennifer is known for a balance of high-profile and indie project, it's possible Passengers could become a nice mix of both.
Actresses Reese Witherspoon and Rachel McAdams were previously linked for the project before Sony got involved.
Empire has posted the first official still image from Ben Wheatley's High-Rise which shows Tom Hiddleston's character Dr. Robert Laing.
Starring alongside Hiddleston in the film include Jeremy Irons (Batman v Superman), Sienna Miller (Layer Cake, American Sniper), Luke Evans (Hobbit, Fast 6), and Elizabeth Moss (Mad Men).
In London in 1975, on the eve of Margaret Thatcher's ascent to political power, Robert Laing (Tom Hiddleston) is a young doctor seduced by the lifestyle in a high-rise, an isolated community, cut off from the rest of society in their luxury tower block, and its creator, the architect Anthony Royal (Jeremy Irons). Taking up residence on the twenty-fifth floor, Laing discovers a world of complex loyalties, and also strikes up a relationship with Royal’s devoted aide Charlotte (Sienna Miller). After Laing befriends Richard Wilder (Luke Evans), a documentary filmmaker relegated to the second floor who is determined to provoke the class injustices inherent in the high-rise, a dangerous social situation develops and the high-rise eventually fragments into violent tribes
Wheatley is known for his odd dark films such as Sightseers, The Kill-List and the extremely trippy A Field In England.
Below is a set image that shows-off Luke Evans' look in the film which has him sporting a mighty-fine stache and chops.
Just days ago co-directors Chad Stahelski and David Leitch revealed they were already developing a sequel to John Wick. The pair are currently in talks to direct Cowboy Viking Ninja next for Universal.
Today, the CEO of Lionsgate Jon Feltheimer made if official during a confrerence call via Variety. Feltheimer going even further proclaiming that “we see ‘John Wick’ as a multiple-title action franchise".
No details besides it's actually happening was announced, no word of a release date or if Reeves is expected to return as Wick.
This could likely leave their other stale franchises like The Expendables in the dust.
Keanu Reeves has been reluctant to sign-on to franchises or even sequels for that matter, but this could be another story considering the amount of detail and preparation that went into the first film. If that magic can be recreated for a franchise then I'm sure Reeves would be a bit more willing to do it.
Universal has been developing a new sequel to Conan The Barbarian with Arnold Schwarzenegger set to reprise the titular role. The film titled Legend of Conan is a direct sequel to the original film and is said to ignore the last two terrible films.
It's a new trend in Hollywood to scrap lesser films from canon and focus on the good ones, Paramount doing it the same with Terminator: Genisys which is another Arnold franchise getting resurrected.
In this case it's a good thing since Conan The Barbarian is easily the peek of the fantasy genre and having new material as it's direct offspring isn't a terrible thing. Barbarian's fingerprints can be seen in almost every fantasy film made since including Peter Jackson's Middle-Earth saga.
"Andrea Berloff [Straight Outta Compton] did a draft," Morgan reminds us, "and then we had Will step on. I approached him early on in the process, but at the time he was unavailable and couldn’t do it. But then a couple of weeks after he passed on the project I got this package from him in the mail, and I opened it and it was a Conan sword, and on the envelope it said, ‘This you can trust!’ So when he called back a while later said he’d had a slot open up, we slammed him in immediately. He’s just perfect for it; he loves it as much as I do and he has a great voice of Conan. It just makes you happy!"
"We look at all the source material and we love things that kind of speak to that tone. We’re incredibly respectful to Howard. I’m a huge fan of the stories and books, but I’m a super-huge fan of the first movie, because that crystallised and distilled it all for me. Milius just killed it. He did such a good job. And Legend Of Conan is really resonant and it really digs into the legacy of that original film. I'm already very proud of it."
This new update combined with talk that the studio is aiming for a production start in the spring could mean the sequel is indeed coming together. Arnold was saying they were possibly looking to shoot it in New Zealand with the help of the team at Weta, hopefully that isn't just cigar smoke he's blowing at us.
"[Universal] finally came forward and said, 'You're absolutely right. The previous regime has missed the boat here. We want to pick it up. We're going to buy the rights and we're going to be serious about it and make a quality film with an A-director and with A-writers and so on. And we want you to participate in this. We want you to star and you to play Conan. We're going to take a story where Conan is at that age so it's totally believable and you're not looking like a 30-year old action guy."
|Arnold and Paul taking a break on the set of Total Recall.|
As for a director there had been some interest from Paul Verhoeven (Black Book, Total Recall, Basic Instinct, Robocop) to make the project when asked about it back in early 2013 via Arnold Fans. At the time a script didn't exist to show the director but it's starting to sound like they might be able to at least meet with Veroheven.
"If they asked me, I’d certainly love to – let’s put it that way," he says. "But I don’t know what the script is. I don’t know what Arnold wants. I’m a big fan in fact of Conan. That’s a great movie and I found that the composer, Basil Poledouris, basically inspired many of my movies [the soundtracks] like Flesh and Blood, RoboCop, Starship Troopers and Total Recall. The score of Conan is great. The style of editing that Milius used was very beautiful, and Arnold does a great job. He was really the perfect choice."
Hollywood has since been remaking most of Paul's films including Recall and Robocop, there is even a Starship Troopers remake in the works he might as well return to show these fools hows it's really done.
Verhoeven is currently shooting the dark thriller Elle which could be finished principal photography in the next couple of months. I'm unsure what his post-production process is but if he does leave the film in the hands of an editor he could be able to start pre-production soon after. The film not really having special effects it's turn-around shouldn't be too time consuming.
Then again, they could easily push the production start a couple of months to allow Paul to finish post before jumping into pre-production on Legend.
|Schwarzenegger and Milius on Conan set.|
We should point-out that John hasn't made a film since 1997 and recently suffered a stroke. Aspects that could make Universal a bit nervous about hiring the director for such a large and costly production.
It's looking very likely that Felicity Jones indeed will be our female lead in Gareth Edwards' Star Wars spin-off. Although, she wasn't the only actress in the mix with Lucasfilm for that role. We know about names like Rooney Mara, Kate Mara and Tatiana Maslany.
A new name has popped-up thanks to The Wrap's Jeff Sneider, who revealed on Meet The Movie Press another Canadian actresses was in the mix. That would be Mackenzie Davis (That Awkward Moment) who is best known from her AMC series Halt And Catch Fire and is apart of the massive cast of Ridley Scott's next sci-fi film The Martian which stars Matt Damon.
It's unlikely there is a role for Davis now that Jones is now in serious talks with the studio but there is hope that there could be more than just one female role in the film. Since it's Star Wars we won't hold our breath but Force Awakens has shown fans that this new Lucasfilm isn't afraid to add multiple women to the cast.
We've previously talked about the many actresses apart of Episode VII some even playing stormtroopers and how that could branch-out to the other films seeing a greater female presence.
SOURCE: MEET THE MOVIE PRESS
Universal has announced that a sequel to Neighbors is indeed on it's way from director Nicholas Stoller. The film is coming out and will see the return of most of it's cast with breakout Rose Byrne, Seth Rogen, and Zac Efron. There is no word if people like Dave Franco will be back in supporting roles.
It's release date is currently set for May 13th, 2016.
I'm on fence about seeing a sequel I liked it but it wasn't super amazing for me.
However, Rose was the best thing about the film and I'm hoping to see it centre around her slightly more than Seth. Imagine having her going-up against a female rival who moves into the neighborhood played by someone like Alexandra Daddario (Percy Jackson, True Detective) who maybe just happens to be also dating Zac's character.
February 5, 2015
According to The Tracking Board, Disney is looking for their male lead in Beauty And The Beast. They are claiming that the studio has offered the lead role of Beast to Ryan Gosling who would be starring alongside Emma Watson who is confirmed for the role of Belle.
I'm labelling it as a rumor because every studio offers roles to Ryan Gosling and most of them never come together, recently he was linked for lead roles in Doctor Strange, Suicide Squad and even Sinister Six seemingly turning them all down. This could also be a case of they want him but he has zero clue the offer is even happening.
I find it hard Gosling would cave-into a Disney production while trying his best to remove himself from his Mickey Mouse Club days by taking serious indie projects, he's also been very cautious to stay clear of these types of movies.
This couldn happen but you'd think Disney would want an actor closer to Watson's age, even if it's Gosling it would be a bit creepy.
SOURCE: TRACKING BOARD
In a world of where Avatar is the highest grossing film of all-time, Star Wars is making a huge comeback with five officially slated films, Guardians of The Galaxy being the breakout hit of 2014 and a fifth Transformers film on the horizon I think it's safe to say that audiences are embracing sci-fi fantasy material more than ever.
Upcoming films such as Neill Blomkamp's Chappie and Alex Garland's (28 Days Later, Sunshine, Dredd) directorial debut Ex Machina are already heavily buzzed about projects coming in 2015.
It's crazy to think that studios have some really interesting science fiction material in their laps and aren't putting them into production right this minute.
There are three projects currently stuck in development limbo that could easily find audiences and make huge impacts on the genre itself.
Paramount had been trying for ages to develop a new feature film version of Frank Herbert's Dune. It seemed to get rolling when directors like Peter Berg (Lone Survivor) and Pierre Morrel (Taken) got involved, both would eventually exit the director's chair. The project would eventually disappear and we haven't had an update in a long time, until the studio admitted it was dead.
The amazing documentary Jodorowsky's Dune follows the original failed attempt to make the film in the 70's. In the documentary the filmmaker makes a good case to actually use his material as is but with an updated cast of course (many are now long dead).
It should make fans furious that someone hasn't optioned his work to turn that into a film or at the very least try to improve on the mess of a film David Lynch made, even though I still enjoy that movie a lot I can agree it's not great.
Even the television mini-series proved the material was solid and just needed a better story teller or someone who could work on that scale.
Jodorowsky's huge artbook included a majority of it's hand-drawn storyboards and most of it's production design (costumes, sets and vehicles) were sent out to studios and shockingly rejected, only to see a bunch of the sci-fi film community stealing his ideas including George Lucas and many of his concept artists for Star Wars.
H.R. Giger's work on the failed film also caught the attention of the people putting together Ridley Scott's Alien. Giger's work for the film is batshit crazy and I'd love to see on the screen someday.
This material still hasn't been adapted to the standard it deserves and it could even rival something like Star Wars if put in the right hands, the world is so rich and worth exploring on a grand scale. I'm kind of hoping Paramount wakes-up from their Transformers and Ninja Turtles coma to get this fucking made.
Here's some of the concept art Paramount had put together for the remake by artist Jock (Dredd).
Check out this extra concept artwork from Feng Zhu and Eduardo Pena posted by i09.
20th Century Fox tried to get a live-action film based on the anime series back in 2008-2010 hiring Peter Craig (The Town, Bad Boys 3, Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1) to pen a script, it would undergo many rewrites but ultimately was shelved by the studio.
Considering films like Guardians of The Galaxy and the return of Star Wars I'm shocked that talk of bringing back Cowboy Bebop into development hasn't been making the rounds. The project was widely supported by it's rather large fanbase and even had Keanu Reeves attached to play the lead role of .
Apparently, the reason like with Dune came down to budgetary restrictions and Reeves even said the film would end-up costing huge amounts of money even by Hollywood standards. After costly gambles like John Carter and Green Lantern losing studios hundreds of millions in loses due to their skyrocketing budgets you can understand why the priority might be to keep a manageable budget as these studio people want to keep their jobs.
Then again, if you can find a director able to keep effects costs down like a Neill Blomkamp or Gareth Edwards who have digital effects background then the film might not need a bloated amount of money to pull-off an ambitious script.
I think this material is going to be a hot commodity very soon, let's hope Fox comes to their senses and figures things out to get it into production.
Evangelion has a bit of a tricky backstory since it had a live-action film in development but the people originally developing it didn't have full film rights to it. Hence the project never saw the light of day even though a bunch of concept artwork had been commissioned by Weta Workshop in New Zealand. The rights have seemingly been cleared-up but hasn't found a home.
Hollywood is starting-up it's obsession with anime/manga material and it sort of started with Edge of Tomorrow (based on book that was turned into manga) making waves last year. Along with studio projects that include Ghost In The Shell, Akira, Robotech and even Astro Boy in the works.
It's also hard to ignore that Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim was greatly inspired by material like Evangelion. That film is spawning sequels and it didn't have an existing fanbase supporting it just audiences hungry for this type of genre to be shown on screens.
We've seen that Warner Bros. is open to this kind of material originally partnering with Legendary Pictures to make Rim, only for it's sequel to go off to Universal. This could easily be it's replacement franchise becoming a giant-fuck-up to Legendary.
Since the comic book genre is almost picked-clean Hollywood is already looking into developing video games, anime and manga source material into live-action film franchises. I expect we'll start seeing studios scrambling to get the rights to the bigger anime and manga projects, like Evangelion.
AICN posted a bunch of concept artwork Weta Workshop had been developing for the live-action adaptation. Weta of course already having a strong connection with Warner Bros. thanks to both the Lord of The Rings and Hobbit trilogies. The company is also said to be greatly involved with Batman v Superman, continuing the relationship with a project like this seems like an excellent parring.
Will these films ever see the light of day?
That remains to be seen and I'm sure once studios start backtracking at the projects they laying-around they'll start rethinking their previously decisions.
Some big names have joined Nicolas Winding Refn's female-led horror film The Neon Demon.
Variety reports that Keanu Reeves (John Wick, Speed, Bram Stoker's Dracula), Christina Hendricks (Drive, Mad Men) and Jena Malone (Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Inherent Vice, Batman v Superman) have joined the cast.
Aussie actress Bella Heathcote (Dark Shadows) is also joining the film but might be lesser known to audiences.
The four additions join Elle Fanning and Abbey Lee who were previously cast in the film.
Details are slim but the film will be set within the world of modelling in L.A.
Variety has a casting update for Disney's Pirates of The Caribeean: Dead Men Tell No Tales which sees actors Adam Brown, Delroy Atkinson and Danny Kirrane joining the cast.
Brown, being the most noteworthy actor of the bunch playing the dwarf Ori in Peter Jackson's Hobbit trilogy. Not to mention working with Orlando Bloom in two of those films. Bloom is expected to reprise the role of Will Turner in the film.
The other new cast members include Javier Bardem, Kaya Scodelario, and Brenton Thwaites.
A new full trailer for Furious 7 has arrived thanks to Universal, the trailer giving a bit more information on Jason Statham's character along with even more new footage. When you didn't think they could get crazier with the action set pieces they do.
New additions to the cast include Djimon Hounsou, Tony Jaa, Ronda Rousey and Kurt Russell. I'm dying to see real fighters like Tony Jaa and Rousey getting into the mix.
The seventh film in the franchise directed by James Wan will be released on April 3rd, 2015.
Director Adam Wingard is returning to the horror genre according to The Hollywood Reporter. Wingard previously helming films such as the thriller The Guest and horror flick You're Next.
Adam will be re-teaming with writer Simon Barrett (The Guest, You're Next) on the Lionsgate project The Woods. Details on the movie are scarce but will focus on a group of college kids who go camping only to find out they aren't alone.
Hollywood Reporter has news of another anime series getting turned into a live-action film that being the iconic Japanese series Astro Boy.
You might remember that Hollywood already tried to make an Astro Boy movie in 2009 with disastrous results.
The animated film barely made $40M worldwide while costing $65M to make this of course doesn't include all the money spent to promote which would likely mean the film ended-up costing that studio at the very least $100M in losses.
Making a live-action film based on these numbers actually sounds insane to me unless this film is going to be made for the Japanese market. The biggest hurtle would be that the show hasn't aired in North America in over a decade and the character would likely be unknown to the aimed demographic. We already saw in 2009 what happens when kids aren't aware of the source material or don't embrace it.
This is also coming from someone who grew-up watching the anime series in the 80s and reruns in the 90s. The material works best in it's animated form and it's live-action counterpart would be super expensive to put together.
It would honestly come down to the creative team that puts the film together as THR reveals a search for writers is about to begin.
Hollywood Reporter is revealing that the Stargate remake is finally getting writers as Nicolas Wright and James A. Woods are in final talks to pen the script. The pair of writers recently wrote the sequel to Independence Day for 20th Century Fox.
The original film from 1994 starring Kurt Russell and James Spader, is actually one of the more coherent movies directed by Roland Emmerich. Also, one of the better science fiction films of that decade I'm excited to see what they end-up doing with the franchise.
Fans of the show might be holding-out hope those actors will be reprising their roles which is extremely unlikely considering the film is indeed a relaunch. Plus, when it comes to movies costing studios $100M+ they tend to hire film actors who can help sell the film internationally on larger scale than television.
February 4, 2015
Deadline is reporting that Warner Bros. is resurrecting the live-action Robotech film with 300 screenwriter Michael Gordon set to pen a new script. The project is based on the widely beloved anime series which has been circling Hollywood for ages.
It's possible that the renewed interest could stem from a mix of the success of Pacific Rim, which has since moved to Universal after Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros. splitting-up.
Along with the largely positive reaction to Edge of Tomorrow which is also adapted from Japanese sci-fi source material. I'm curious if they'll put the amount of effort into the project as they did with Edge.
Not to mention Fox's amping-up the huge sci-fi genre with James Cameron's Avatar sequels that could feed the demand for more of these types of films to be made.
I've been hearing about a Robotech movie as long as I've been blogging which is almost a decade and this might be more of the same since every couple of years there's a new creative team announced. The team never getting too far and each time would go back into limbo.
Writers Akiva Goldsman (I Am Legend, A Beautiful Mind) and Lawarence Kasdan (Raiders of The Lost Ark, Empire Strikes Back, Force Awakens) trying to develop the film previously without anything to show for it.
I'll be trying my best to keep optimistic about this new development but we've been down this road many times before.
There's a bit of hope on my part to see Warner Bros. possibly turning these anime/manga films into one single cinematic universe which could include Edge, Robotech and even Akira. Of course, certain things would need to be tweaked to allow this to happen but might give the studio a strong reason to keep the Japanese roots to something like Akira instead of Americanizing it and whitewashing it's casting.
A couple of months ago Neill Blomkamp starting posting concept artwork for an Alien movie project on his Instagram and Twitter accounts. The project using the working title of Alien: Xenomorph and was completely under the radar of the people at 20th Century Fox, who would end-up greenlighting such a film.
The premise being this film would take place sometime after Aliens, I assume with the aged-up cast returning to their roles and ignoring that the two previous films ever happened.
Something that is already going on at Paramount with their Terminator franchise as Terminator Genisys coming this summer is a reboot of sorts. That film is systematically pretending that the last two films aren't canon and is seeming going back to 1984 (other time periods as well). If Arnold's coming back they might as well do the same for Ripley.
Alien Resurrection didn't really leave much room for this to be an option for Alien 5 unless Hicks is still alive somehow. They'd have to do a lot of explaining to bring Hick back in that timeline.
Rebooting the franchise entirely has always been a taboo subject at the studio, even though fans assumed that Prometheus was going to be exactly that. Of course, if they had followed the production process they would know the film was always going to focus on the origins of the Space Jockey aka the Engineers.
Now let's consider where Blomkamp got this idea to bring back Dwayne Hicks and the derelict ship.
It actually might have been inspired by the video game Aliens: Colonial Marines which for most was a massive disappointment. The game was terrible in almost every aspect and had huge potential because it's developer Gearbox had access to all the materials from the Aliens production. Colonial Marines was expected to actually become a semi-sequel to Aliens and would even attempt to bring back characters including Hicks reprised by Michael Biehn.
In the game's downloadable expansion single-player mission titled Stasis Interrupted, it's revealed that Hicks wasn't in the cryo-tube when the escape pod crashed in Alien 3. This allowing Hicks to have had an unseen storyline explored in the game. Some fans have actually embraced this expansion but it's unlikely any have really heard of it.
|Michael Bishop Weyland|
Weyland gets ahold of the derelict ship and starts experiments on both LV-426 at the Origin Facility and his own ship using unsuspecting colonists as hosts for the xenomorphs. This base of operations was also teased in the production artwork posted by Blomkamp.
Check out the comparisons between the Weyland facility from the game and the one posted by Neill Blomkamp.
|Origin Facility on LV-426 from Stasis Interrupted|
|Derelict Ship at Weyland Facility posted by Blomkamp|
The expanded mission's story was seemingly being pulled from old Fox scripts that had Dwayne Hicks as the lead of the third film, a precaution at the time as the studio and producers kept finding ways to exclude Weaver from returning. There were indeed versions that did have Hicks taking-over as protagonist of the series but that never did end-up happening.
This of course wasn't James Cameron's idea for the third film as he had envisioned that family dynamic created at the end of Aliens being further explored. He was gutted when Fox killed both Newt and Hicks in the third film, and would eventually turn his back to the franchise once they passed on his Alien 5 pitch to make AVP instead.
Having a video game inspire his direction for an Alien movie pitch wouldn't be crazy for Blomkamp, remember was once set to direct the live-action Halo movie and previously made live-action ads for the game as well.
Let's not also ignore that Sledgehammer Games took direct designs from his film Elysium for a lot of the design work on Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. To the point I'm shocked there wasn't a lawsuit.
Honestly, it couldn't be any less ridiculous than producers pulling story elements from The Hobbit for most of the Alien 3 script. Trying watching the film now after seeing Desolation of Smaug, the producers obviously scrambling for material were writing scenes just before they were shot.
Fox getting on board might be a tough sell since they did take a huge hit from Aliens: Colonial Marines turning out to be a huge clusterfuck, having a film slightly connected to the game might be a reason why they could turn it down.
Then again, with Blomkamp involved it could see more interested parties include Sigourney Weaver who just worked with the director on Chappie. Weaver has been vocal since the 90s and even up until recently to finally give Ripley another shot in fifth Alien film. I'm also sure that Michael and Lance would jump at the chance to reprise their roles as well.
Neill Blomkamp hasn't announced his next film but it's expected his next film could be based on his short film Yellow which focuses on cyborgs. However, he did sound like he was interested in returning the Alien project at some point in the future with studio backing it could be enough to push him into serious development.