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1. ‘Iron Giant: Signature Edition’ Has An Amazing New Trailer, Blu-ray Release Confirmed

The signature edition of "Iron Giant" will have its world premiere next month at the Toronto International Film Festival.

0 Comments on ‘Iron Giant: Signature Edition’ Has An Amazing New Trailer, Blu-ray Release Confirmed as of 8/27/2015 3:39:00 PM
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2. Michael Shannon reveals an odd detail about Batman v Superman

I might get a little spoiler-y here, perhaps, so steer clear if you want to see Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice with fresh eyes. If you saw the trailer for the film that was released at SDCC, you’ll notice one detail that caught some by surprise was the inclusion of Michael Shannon‘s Zod being […]

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3. UPDATE: Coverage of ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Casting Call in London

Today, thousands of girls aged 8-12 years flocked to the Excel Centre in London to audition for the role of ‘Modesty’ in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, due for release in November 2016.

J.K. Rowling also tweeted about her excitement to find the girl perfect girl to play the ‘haunted young girl with an inner strength and stillness’:

Screen Shot 2015-07-18 at 21.05.20

Various Potter stars also gave their best wishes to the girls in the queue, including Evanna Lynch, who posted an encouraging message on her Facebook earlier this week, urging people to audition:

Screen Shot 2015-07-18 at 21.56.40

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Here’s a first-hand breakdown of the day:

9:00am: Word around the HUGE queue was that people started to gather at around 5am, so by the time 9:00am hit (the time the queues opened), 4000 people were already raring to go.

10:00am-12:30pm: Temperatures were running high, and patience among the young hopefuls running thin. Security guards passed round water, suncream and umbrellas, with water tanks, an ice cream van and a snack bar nearer the front of the outside portion of the queue.

News reporters and various camera crew members were circling the crowds from all angles, and interviewing those in line – as in this video from BBC’s Newsround, and this video from Sky News. Others tweeted their photos of the queues:

Screen Shot 2015-07-18 at 21.26.45Screen Shot 2015-07-18 at 21.15.55Screen Shot 2015-07-18 at 21.27.27

13:00pm: 9:00am arrivals reached the section (inside and air-conditioned!) portion of the queue. An absolute blessing. Casting Information Forms were handed out and filled in.

Screen Shot 2015-07-18 at 21.48.24

14:30pm-15:00pm: After around six hours of queueing, 9:00am arrivals were finally taken in for their audition, which went as follows:

Staff took groups of ten children aside at a time, telling them not to be nervous. Girls were then broken into smaller groups to have their photos taken.

For their head-shots, girls were lined up in front of whiteboard and told what face to pull (e.g: straight face, smiley face, ‘eyes shut’ face). A casting crew member then took the groups aside to stand in a circle and take it in turns to tell the others their name, age and birthday. They were then asked a few questions (e.g: ‘If you had one superpower, what would it be?’)

Children then handed in their Casting Information Forms, and received a certificate to say they had taken part.

The audition was a 30-50 minute process on average. RadioTimes said that an estimated 14,000 children queued up outside the Excel Exhibition Centre.

We are all very excited at The Leaky Cauldron to see who’s going to be cast as Modesty. Join us in wishing good luck to those who auditioned!

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4. Wonder Woman and Justice League now have filming start dates

Per the big cover story in the latest issue of Empire Magazine, we now know just when Wonder Woman and Justice League, the two 2017 entries that will follow Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad will begin filming. According to the magazine, Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins is currently in London prepping […]

6 Comments on Wonder Woman and Justice League now have filming start dates, last added: 8/3/2015
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5. Nike’s New Marvin the Martian Spot Is All Action, No Comedy

What would a Looney Tunes cartoon look like without any comedy? Watch this to find out.

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6. Tom Hardy is developing 100 Bullets for New Line

It was just a few months back that Tom Hardy had hinted that he was working on a DC Comics adaptation, with all kinds of guesses flying around as to what he could have been referring to. Planetary? The Invisibles? Hitman? Per THR, we now have an answer, as they report that Hardy is set […]

2 Comments on Tom Hardy is developing 100 Bullets for New Line, last added: 8/12/2015
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7. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice synopsis reveals more about the upcoming clash

batman-v-superman-imax-poster-superman-406x600

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, for such a massive movie, is surprisingly something we don’t know that much about. We’ve gotten teaser photos, a trailer, and posters; but strangely we’ve yet to actually get a synopsis detailing what’s going to happen on screen.

Until today that is, per Collider just ahead of this year’s Licensing Expo:

Fearing the actions of a god-like super hero left unchecked, Gotham City’s own formidable, forceful vigilante takes on Metropolis’s most revered, modern-day savior, while the world wrestles with what sort of hero it really needs.  And with Batman and Superman at war with one another, a new threat quickly arises, putting mankind in greater danger than it’s ever known before.   

I guess Zod and his fellow Kryptonians invading and tearing up a huge hole in Metropolis was just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the danger that the DC Universe is about to face. There have been rumors about what this will entail, but I’m not going to relay them here for fear of spoiling something. I’m sure Jesse Eisenberg‘s Lex Luthor will probably be at the center of it.

Though I can’t help but wonder: where does Gal Gadot‘s Wonder Woman fit into all of this? Or how about the expected appearances of Aquaman, The Flash, and Cyborg? Quick cameos at best for the latter three?

I remain intrigued, mainly due to the fact that I have no idea what to really expect out of Oscar-winner Chris Terrio‘s take on the DC universe and what Zack Snyder will produce without the Christopher Nolan-factor.

T-minus 9 months (and some change) and counting. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice releases on March 26, 2016.

1 Comments on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice synopsis reveals more about the upcoming clash, last added: 6/9/2015
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8. SDCC’15: WB Television reveals panel line-up including DC’s Legends of Tomorrow on-stage and a Supergirl premiere

legends of tomorrow

Warner Bros. television has just announced its full line-up for this year’s San Diego Comic Con, and it’s looking quite packed. With the Supergirl pilot premiering on Wednesday, July 8th during the vaunted “Preview Night” along with a screening of Lucifer‘s pilot, as well as the pilots for Containment, Blindspot, and a new episode of Teen Titans Go!, their programming is opening up in a cracking fashion.

All of that excitement will then be followed by panel programming over the next few days that will surely be attention grabbing, particularly the Saturday night 8 pm slot in Hall H that sees what they refer to as “Superhero Saturday Night” which, among other features, will includes Q&A’s with the stars of Gotham, The Flash, Arrow, and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow.

You know I’ll be trying to fight my way in there! Wish me luck!

Here’s the full schedule that was released today:

FRIDAY, JULY 10

 

  • 10:00–11:00 a.m. The Big Bang Theory (Season 9 Premieres September 21, Mondays 8/7c on CBS): The Big Bang Theory writers are returning to San Diego, to once again solve the comedy equation and take you behind the scenes of TV’s #1 comedy! Ballroom 20

 

  • 11:30 a.m.12:30 p.m. Lucifer (Midseason on FOX): Sexy, dark and irreverent, Lucifer makes its Comic-Con debut with a screening of the complete pilot episode, followed by a Q&A with series stars Tom Ellis, Lauren German, Lesley-Ann Brandt and DB Woodside and executive producers. Room 6BCF

 

  • Time TBA Mike Tyson Mysteries (New Episodes Fall 2015 on Adult Swim): With a knockout appearance last year,Iron Mike Tyson is taking on Comic-Con again and this rematch is sure to live up to the hype. After a hilarious season of solving mysteries, the Mike Tyson Mystery Team will be back in the ring with all-new episodes on Adult Swim this fall. Join voice cast Mike Tyson and Rachel Ramras (MAD), and producer Hugh Davidson (The Looney Tunes Show) for a first look at the upcoming season and a Q&A discussion.  Location TBA

 

  • 12:30–1:30 p.m. The 100 (Midseason on The CW): Following the lethal events of the season finale, join The 100 stars along with executive producer Jason Rothenberg as they return to San Diego for their third appearance at Comic-Con.Ballroom 20

 

  • 1:00–2:00 p.m. Teen Titans Go! (Thursdays 6/5c Cartoon Network): No trip to Comic-Con is complete without spending some time with the liveliest and craziest super hero team on television. Find out what new adventures, food fights and staring contests await Robin, Starfire, Beast Boy, Cyborg and Raven in season three of this hit animated series.  Join producers Michael Jelenic (Batman: The Brave and The Bold) and Aaron Horvath (MAD) and members of the voice cast as they screen a brand-new episode, as well as take questions on all things Titans! Room 6A

 

  • 4:30–5:30 p.m. The Originals (Thursdays 9/8c on The CW): The Originals will be returning for more sexy, supernatural intrigue, romance, alliances, betrayals and bloodshed in New Orleans this fall. Join executive producers Julie Plec and Michael Narducci along with series stars Joseph Morgan, Daniel Gillies, Phoebe Tonkin, Leah Pipes, Danielle Campbell and Charles Michael Davis for a special video presentation followed by a Q&A. Ballroom 20

 

  • 5:45–6:45 p.m. iZOMBIE (Tuesdays 9/8c on The CW): The brainy hit iZOMBIE returns to San Diego for its sophomore appearance at Comic-Con. After the shocking events in the season finale, be among the first to get the scoop on what’s in store for season two with executive producers Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero-Wright, along with series stars Rose McIver, Malcolm Goodwin, Rahul Kohli, Robert Buckley and David Anders. Ballroom 20

 

SATURDAY, JULY 11

 

  • 11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m. Blindspot (Mondays 10/9c on NBC): The new one-hour action-thriller Blindspot makes its Comic-Con debut with a screening of the complete pilot episode, followed by a Q&A with star Jaimie Alexander (Thor films) and executive producers Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter and Martin Gero. Room 6A

 

  • 5:15 p.m.–6:15 p.m. Person of Interest (Midseason on CBS): Person of Interest returns to San Diego for the fifth year! Join the discussion, as the science “fiction” of Person of Interest stays one step ahead of real-world events. Find out highly confidential intel when executive producers Jonathan Nolan, Greg Plageman and Denise Thé join series stars Jim Caviezel, Michael Emerson, Kevin Chapman and Amy Acker undergo a Comic-Con interrogation with a special video presentation and Q&A. Room 6BCF

 

  • 6:15–7:15 p.m.  Containment (Midseason on The CW): When a mysterious and deadly epidemic breaks out in Atlanta, a vast urban quarantine is quickly enforced, forcing those stuck on the inside to fight for their lives while local and federal officials desperately search for a cure. Containment makes its Comic-Con debut with a special screening of the entire pilot episode, followed by a Q&A with series stars David Gyasi, Christina Moses, Chris Wood, Claudia Black and Kristen Gutoskie, along with executive producers Julie Plec, Matt Corman and Chris Ord. Room 6BCF

 

  • 8:00–11:00 p.m.  Warner Bros. Television & DC Entertainment Present: Super Hero Saturday Night Offers Fans a Look Inside the Worlds of Arrow, The Flash and Gotham, plus a Pilot Screening of Supergirl and Video Presentations of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow and Vixen: DC fans … get ready for another Super Hero Saturday Night! Warner Bros. Television and DC Entertainment will again welcome fans into the worlds of some of DC Comics’ greatest characters during a three-hour super-experience in Hall H. The exclusive evening will feature a pilot screening of the highly anticipated new action series Supergirl, followed by a Q&A with stars and producers; plus, individual special video presentations and Q&As with stars and producers from Arrow, The Flash and Gotham. Also, don’t miss a special Q&A with cast and producers of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow and a peek at the new digital series Vixen. Hall H

 

SUNDAY, JULY 12

 

  • 10:00–11:00 a.m. The Vampire Diaries (Thursdays 8/7c on The CW): The cast and creative team behind The Vampire Diaries return to San Diego — for the first time in Hall H — for a sizzling seventh appearance at Comic-Con. Series stars Ian Somerhalder, Paul Wesley, Kat Graham, Candice Accola and Michael Malarkey will join executive producers Julie Plec and Caroline Dries on stage for a video screening and Q&A session. Hall H

 

  • 11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m. Supernatural (Wednesdays 9/8c The CW): Join series stars Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, Misha Collins and Mark A. Sheppard, along with executive producer Jeremy Carver, as they return to answer questions from the audience about what’s in store for the eleventh season of this exciting series! Fans will also be treated to an exclusive video presentation featuring series highlights, as well as special features from the upcoming Supernatural: The Complete Tenth Season DVD and Blu-ray™ release on September 8. Hall H

 

  • 1:00–2:00 p.m. Childrens Hospital (New Episodes in 2016 on Adult Swim): Adult Swim’s two-time Emmy®-winning live-action comedy returns to Comic-Con for a sixth year! Creator and star Rob Corddry and executive producer David Wain will be joined onstage by select cast for a lively (and medically accurate!) Q&A.  Room 25ABC

 

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9. Jesse Eisenberg confirms he’ll be at Hall H

 

jesse-eisenberg-lex-luthor2

Toss this into the “no duh” pile, but it’s good to get confirmation about Warner Bros’ plans for SDCC.

Speaking to the folks at Collider regarding his upcoming road-trip drama The End of the Tour (which looks promising, by the way), our newest Lex Luthor, Jesse Eisenberg confirmed that he will indeed be at the mega-event in just a few weeks, and he plans to spend a significant amount of time in Hall H:

I’ll be there…I think I’m there for the hour I’m on the stage.

Eisenberg also had further praise for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice screenwriter Chris Terrio, who jumped onto the project after Ben Affleck was cast as Batman and completely rewrote the existing script:

I like what this writer does, this guy Chris Terrio. He wrote this movie we did and I just think he’s so great. He’s such a good writer. I like what he does with characters, I like what he does with wordplay and cleverness. I like anything he writes.

I’m certain that given Marvel Studios not appearing in San Diego this year, that the Warner Bros panel will indeed be the talk of the entire Con. Here’s hoping whatever they show, a full trailer seems almost a certainty, gets released online right away and not in some lower quality bootleg form first.

We’re only a few weeks away, it should be a madhouse!

3 Comments on Jesse Eisenberg confirms he’ll be at Hall H, last added: 6/19/2015
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10. Rumor: Green Lantern Reboot to focus on multiple Lanterns?

green-lantern_610

Up to this point we at least have some idea for what the majority of DC’s future cinematic output is going to look like. While the 2016 films (Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad) are totally on the books and are either done filming or getting there, later year films like Wonder Woman, Justice League Parts 1 and 2, Aquaman, Shazam, and The Flash all have stars attached, and writers or directors. Even Cyborg already has its lead.

The one wild card here in the rebooted Green Lantern. Nary a peep has been whispered about it in recent months other than a casting rumor here and there, and Tyrese Gibson going on a promotional crusade to get the part.

But now, thanks to Collider, we finally at least have a rumor to chew on.

According to their report, they’ve heard that the new Green Lantern film will not just star Hal Jordan or John Stewart, but both of them, and potentially Guy Gardner as well. Going further, they state that the Green Lantern franchise from that point will never focus on just one Green Lantern, but the entire Corps. Matt over at Collider also surmises that we may end up meeting the new Green Lanterns (at least John and Hal) at SDCC during Warner Bros’ sure to be massive Hall H presentation.

Collider isn’t generally in the business of breaking unfounded rumors, and Latino-Review is hearing basically the same thing. So while it’s still a rumor, and even they admit things could still change for a film that’s years down the line in the production cycle (2020), it’s probably the most promising idea I’ve heard regarding this franchise in some time.

2 Comments on Rumor: Green Lantern Reboot to focus on multiple Lanterns?, last added: 6/25/2015
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11. New Line to take over Vertigo adaptations

Morpheus," god of Sleep

Creating a shared universe on-screen is tough work, especially if you’re starting at the ground-level like Warner Bros is doing with their DC Comics properties.

Currently the studio has nine films currently either in production or in pre-production stages, which are slated to establish the DC Cinematic Universe (The Flash, Green Lantern, Cyborg, etc…).

With all that in mind, it left many to wonder about the status of films like Sandman and Guillermo Del Toro‘s long simmering Dark Universe. According to THR, the former, and most other Vertigo adaptations, will now be handled by WB’s sister arm New Line, which they absorbed many a moon ago.

Strangely, Dark Universe will remain at Warner Bros, and will conceivably continue to be attached to the DC properties that surround it. The bad news? Del Toro is off the project, which sadly, is not a new feeling where he’s concerned. On the other hand, Shazam! will continue to be developed by New Line, meaning much like the Vertigo properties they’re working on, Shazam! may very well not be connected to the DC Cinematic Universe either.

You get all that? In summary: all of Warner Bros. superhero movies except Shazam! will be developed by WB, all Vertigo movies except Dark Universe will be developed by New Line. I’m getting a headache just thinking about it.

1 Comments on New Line to take over Vertigo adaptations, last added: 6/30/2015
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12. ‘The Iron Giant’ Will (Finally) Return to Theaters in September [UPDATED]

Remastered with two new scenes, Brad Bird's animated masterpiece of war and peace is returning for a very limited engagement.

0 Comments on ‘The Iron Giant’ Will (Finally) Return to Theaters in September [UPDATED] as of 7/8/2015 3:38:00 PM
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13. Suicide Squad’s Sizzle Reel in Glorious 1080p!

With a huge frown on their collective entity’s face and a couple of stiletto-wearing foot stomps to boot, Warner Bros. has released an official copy of the Suicide Squad sizzle reel that leaked after being shown at a panel during SDCC.  The trailer comes with a statement:

“Warner Bros. Pictures and our anti-piracy team have worked tirelessly over the last 48 hours to contain the Suicide Squad footage that was pirated from Hall H on Saturday. We have been unable to achieve that goal. Today we will release the same footage that has been illegally circulating on the web, in the form it was created and high quality with which it was intended to be enjoyed. We regret this decision as it was our intention to keep the footage as a unique experience for the Comic Con crowd, but we cannot continue to allow the film to be represented by the poor quality of the pirated footage stolen from our presentation.”
– Sue Kroll, President Worldwide Marketing and International Distribution, Warner Bros. Pictures

Deadline and a few other outlets have speculated that the leak of Suicide Squad and Deadpool footage meant exclusively for SDCC attendees could mean the end of the media practice.  Deadline characterizes this type of footage as a “gift,” and it is.  However, the reality of the internet is that information can be disseminated far and wide at increasingly rapid speeds.  There’s no way to stop this sort of thing from happening in the future, and not showing any promotional material at all seems like an emotionally driven reaction that ultimately hurts all parties, movie studios like Warner Bros. included.

It doesn’t make sense for companies to fight the future.  There’s plenty of room for innovation left in the internet.  Corporations simply need to embrace that.

3 Comments on Suicide Squad’s Sizzle Reel in Glorious 1080p!, last added: 7/16/2015
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14. Unveiling of expansion to Warner Bros. Hollywood Studio Tour

SnitchSeeker recently made an early visit to the brand new exhibit (opened July 16th) at the Warner Bros. Hollywood Studio Tour – Stage 48: Script to Screen.

This is a $13 million addition to the tour, which takes about two hours to complete, moving from set to set on the archetypal navigator of the Hollywood film industry: a golf cart. Giving guests a deep and interactive look into the film-making process, the Stage 48 exhibit shows the different stages involved in production, casting, costume design and script writing through a variety of interactive stations. Key moments of the tour are given by Deadline:

‘Highlights include the Central Perk coffeehouse from Friends and a green-screen setup that let guests fly on Harry Potter’s broomstick. Other enhancements include recorded messages from the stars of 2 Broke GirlsPretty Little Liars, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show. There’s also newly assembled video montages of scenes from productions filmed on the Warner Bros backlot.’

Of course, SnitchSeeker‘s main concern on their visit was to explore the Potter sections! Much alike the Warner Bros. Studio Tour – The Making of Harry Potter in Leavesden, Stage 48’s special effects area features green screen booths where visitors can ride a broomstick. SnitchSeeker writes:

‘Guests don a Hogwarts robe and are seated on a broomstick. Then they’re able to watch themselves – via a monitor – as they fly through various parts of London and the English countryside on their way to Hogwarts Castle. Souvenir photos of the experience are available for purchase.’

normal_rider

This interactive experience also allows you to place yourself within film scenes from The Dark Knight and Gravity.

Other stations explored by SnitchSeeker involve a motion capture station, featuring Dobby the House Elf, who copies your actions on a screen. This is reportedly much alike the ‘moving skeleton’ spell involving the interactive wands in Knockturn Alley at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando.

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Emma Watson and Daniel Radcliffe’s audition tapes are also included in the casting section, and Mr Weasley’s enchanted Ford Anglia is ‘flying’ (or hanging from the ceiling) in the sound stage. SnitchSeeker also writes that there is a video by set designer for the Potter films, Stuart Craig.

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Last but not least, SnitchSeeker explored the gift shop for the Hollywood tour, selling loads of Harry Potter merchandise. They say:

‘We spotted some new Potter goodies there, including Pigwidgeon plushes, Gryffindor Quidditch duffle bags and light up Swords of Gryffindor.’

You can read more, see more photos of the exhibit, and watch videos of the interactive stations in SnitchSeeker’s article here, and take a look at their  photo gallery including loads more photos here.

Thanks to SnitchSeeker for such an in-depth look inside the new Stage 48: Script to Screen!

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15. Let Jared Leto’s Joker wish you a happy Friday night!

For weeks and weeks, we kept getting teases about Jared Leto‘s hair, his voice, and any other scrap of information that the internet could pull together about what his Joker looks like in David Ayer‘s upcoming Suicide Squad.

The wait is over folks, as Ayer has tweeted out the first official Joker photo in honor of the Joker’s 75th anniversary:

Jared Leto Joker

Not sure how I feel about the grille, and some of the tattoos (though they line up pretty well with the rumors that this Joker would look a bit like Jim Lee‘s from All Star Batman and Robin), but there’s something really unsettling about Leto’s appearance here…dare I say, it captures the kind of manic energy I was hoping we’d see in our next on-screen Joker. I’m rather creeped out looking at him, and that may be just the desired effect that Ayer and his team are going for.

Also, while I know that’s a riff on the whole “tear on the face” prison tattoo bit he has going on there…is that maybe a “J” for Jason Todd? Possibly a stretch, but we did apparently see a Robin costume in that Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice trailer.

I’m sure this totally won’t dominate the weekend at all.

2 Comments on Let Jared Leto’s Joker wish you a happy Friday night!, last added: 4/25/2015
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16. Netflix and Warners Will Serve Up ‘Green Eggs and Ham’

The next Dr. Seuss screen adaptation may be the most expensive animated television program ever.

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17. First look at the entire Suicide Squad in costume

Tweeted out by director David Ayer this evening, here’s your full cast photo of the Suicide Squad (in costume)…

Suicide-Squad-Cast-Photo

From the photo, you have your first glimpse of Margot Robbie‘s Harley Quinn, Will Smith‘s Deadshot, Karen Fukuhara‘s Katana (there’s a surprise development!), Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje‘s Killer Croc, Jai Courtney‘s Captain Boomerang, Joel Kinnaman‘s Rick Flagg and more that we haven’t gotten confirmation on.

Hit me with your thoughts!

Suicide Squad releases on August 5, 2016.

12 Comments on First look at the entire Suicide Squad in costume, last added: 5/6/2015
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18. Review: Mad Max: Fury Road is the feminist blockbuster we need right now

Doof Warrior

Oh my…

That’s a decent way to start a review, right? After walking out of tonight’s screening of Mad Max: Fury Road, I had so much built up energy inside of me, I literally had to jump around outside of the theater. Quite a few critics have been hailing George Miller‘s return to his seminal franchise as a “masterpiece”. As far as movies that live and die on their action spectacle go, you can consider me one of the converted.

This fourth entry in a series that hasn’t seen a new film in 30 years is basically a reboot, though you could also see it as a sequel to Beyond Thunderdome in a sort of James Bond sense. Tom Hardy steps into the role originally inhabited by Mel Gibson, and his version of Max Rockatansky basically picks up where his predecessor left off. The world has continued to devolve into a hellish landscape in a way that would make George Romero jealous, but any newcomer to Miller’s post-apocalyptic fever dream will find themselves easily able to grasp the central details: Max is a former cop whose family was murdered, and he now wanders this scorched earth attempting to survive. Max gets caught by the minions of Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne), a sort of steampunk Darth Vader/Papal-figure, who is treated like a savior by his men and farms women for their wombs and breast milk. While Max is imprisoned, Joe’s leading lady, Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron) makes a break for it with his prized concubines, which sets off a chain of events that finds Max, Furiosa, the neurotic yet redeemable Nux (Nicholas Hoult), and a set of kick-ass ladies (Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Zoe Kravitz, Riley Keough, Abbey Lee, and Courtney Eaton) on a wild chase as they attempt to lose Joe’s rolling army in dusty desert.

Allow me to emphasize the word chase, as this activity is what makes up literally 99% of Fury Road‘s running time. This is a film that is pretty thin on plot, but bustling with sheer momentum, action set-pieces, intricate design work, and the most rocking score I’ve heard in a film of this type in some time. Through the mostly desert surface, Max and company are pursued by white painted men with explosive muskets, pirates with spiked cars, mercenaries wearing clothes made of bullets, and of course Joe himself. On display is literally every deathrace cliche reinvented for the screen and taken to the next logical extreme. It’s a film so high octane, that Miller even speeds up the action, and envelops it in biting humor, in a move reminiscent of the work of Jean-Pierre Jeunet; and it goes to show that Miller, even at 70, is a filmmaker is still willing to learn and adapt to new influences. Mad Max: Fury Road feels like the work of a much younger and hungrier director, and his collaboration with comics giant Brendan McCarthy (who both co-wrote the screenplay and provided much of the design work, and boy does it ever show!) may have done much to reinvigorate Miller post-films like Happy Feet.

However, despite the onslaught of Michael Bay style pyrotechnics, Miller still takes the time to give focus to the character dynamics of this rag-tag bunch that’s formed by circumstance. Rather than cardboard cut-outs, each character feels like a fully-fleshed individual via sparse dialogue and taut performances. The script is the definition of “show, don’t tell”, as exposition is kept to an absolute minimum. Perhaps the biggest and most welcome surprise is that Max isn’t even really the star of the show, though Hardy is quite good in the role, as that honor goes to Furiosa. Theron’s shaved head, mechanically-armed warrior may very well be the closest thing we’ve had to a new Ripley, and I think you can easily argue that this is Theron’s Aliens. I doubt she’ll be up for Oscar consideration, as this is  the kind of film that voters almost never go for (Sigourney Weaver‘s nomination came when the field for actresses was relatively slim), but I would wholeheartedly support a Best Actress campaign in this case. She’s that good.

This added focus on Furiosa also underscores an important point; it’s one of the most feminist action films in recent memory. Fury Road centers on a group of women taking their own agency and pushing against patriarchal rule. While this franchise has always had an undercurrent of pacifist themes, Miller has laser-focused his message, to a point where one interaction at the midway point of the film ends up stating the obvious: this is what happens when old white men run the world unchecked. That may rankle some feathers in the audience, but this is an action movie that isn’t just empty spectacle or aiming for the lowest common denominator. This is a motion picture that’s actually about something with a strong point of view, and that’s worth standing up and applauding for. It’s basically the film equivalent of an album by The Clash dropping in the middle of a sea of bad arena rock.

Mad Max: Fury Road began filming in 2012, and had to undergo reshoots in 2013 (and this of course follows the 25 years of development hell that the film underwent just to get to there). We often take issue with productions that have to undergo that dreaded process, but Mad Max: Fury Road is a diamond of an exception and proves that as an audience, it behooves us to trust in auteur vision, especially in the action arena which so sorely needs it. Much like Bong Joon-ho‘s Snowpiercer last year, Miller paves the way for what these films should look like and the level of care that needs to go into them. This effort proves that, sometimes, you really can go home again.

To every other movie releasing this Summer: good luck!

6 Comments on Review: Mad Max: Fury Road is the feminist blockbuster we need right now, last added: 5/16/2015
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19. CBS has released the first trailer for Supergirl

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Supergirl, the new CBS drama that will debut this Fall in the same timeslot as Gotham (8 pm on Mondays), got its first trailer at CBS’ Upfronts presentation today as well as a new synopsis:

Twelve-year-old Kara escaped the doomed planet Krypton with her parents’ help at the same time as the infant Kal-El. Protected and raised on Earth by her foster family, the Danvers, Kara grew up in the shadow of her foster sister, Alex (Chyler Leigh), and learned to conceal the phenomenal powers she shares with her famous cousin in order to keep her identity a secret. Years later at 24, Kara lives in National City assisting media mogul and fierce taskmaster Cat Grant (Golden Globe Award winner Calista Flockhart), who just hired the Daily Planet’s former photographer, James Olsen (Mehcad Brooks), as her new art director. However, Kara’s days of keeping her talents a secret are over when Hank Henshaw (David Harewood), head of a super-secret agency where her sister also works, enlists her to help them protect the citizens of National City from sinister threats.

 

While Gotham isn’t quite a ratings juggernaut for FOX, it does very well in its timeslot, so I’ll be curious to see if this splits the audience at all. Either way, this is a whole new kind of Batman vs Superman showdown.

15 Comments on CBS has released the first trailer for Supergirl, last added: 5/14/2015
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20. New set pictures from Suicide Squad showcase the Joker and his car

Via JustJared, here are a whole bunch of pictures from the set of Suicide Squad, featuring Jared Leto‘s Joker and Margot Robbie as an either in disguise or pre-“Harley Quinn” Harleen Quinzel.

It looks like the Joker is wearing some pretty typical mobster clothing, and while some fans thought perhaps those tattoos were just for the promotional picture from last month, you can see that they are indeed present on Leto here.

Suicide Squad opens on August 5, 2016.

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2 Comments on New set pictures from Suicide Squad showcase the Joker and his car, last added: 5/18/2015
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21. Phil Lord confirms that Ezra Miller will be playing Barry Allen in The Flash

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Phil Lord and Chris Miller, after having a number of smash hits like The Lego Movie and the 21 Jump Street franchise under their belts, have become among the most desired screenwriters in Hollywood. Currently, they’re working on both a Spider-Man animated feature for Sony and Warner Bros’ big screen version of The Flash, starring Ezra Miller (The Perks of Being A Wallflower).

Given that there’s already a pretty popular television series starring Grant Gustin on The CW as the Barry Allen version of The Flash, there’s been some question as to which iteration Miller might play, even though the movies will not be connected to the television series as part of any shared universe.

Lord was recently a guest on the Hippojuice podcast (via /Film) where he gave an update on the film:

We’re trying to break a story. It’s interesting, because there’s a really popular TV show out there, and we’re trying to carve out space for the movie that’s apart from that. I think we’re doing alright. … I believe [our Flash] is going to be Barry Allen. … It’s going to be its own [thing, apart from the TV show] — we’re more trying to stick with the cinematic universe… it really is its own thing, and kind of a stand-alone movie. We’re just trying to think of the best story. I think you guys will like it, it’s kind of a different take on superhero stuff.

This basically confirms that we’ll have both a television and film version of the same character. Honestly though, I don’t see this as a terribly big deal. On average about 3-4 million viewers watch The Flash, and I’m willing to give the benefit of the doubt that any confusion for that relatively modest audience (in comparison to the audience that will reach a feature film) will be limited.

More importantly, in a somewhat chaotic DC film slate that reportedly has five screenwriters assigned to Wonder Woman and at least three on Aquaman, the fact that The Flash‘s script situation is being approached in a much more stable manner is reassuring.

But only time will tell. The Flash is expected to see release in 2018.

4 Comments on Phil Lord confirms that Ezra Miller will be playing Barry Allen in The Flash, last added: 5/19/2015
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22. George Miller’s Justice League gets a “why didn’t this get made?” documentary

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George Miller‘s Mad Max: Fury Road has been a nice moderate hit, accumulating 95 million over the past 11 days, with word of mouth continuing to be strong and rightfully so.

One of the big social discussion points I’ve seen floating around since its release are articles with titles like: “We could have had a George Miller Justice League!”, and it’s true, the auteur behind the Mad Max series was indeed in place to direct the big DC team-up, entitled Justice League: Mortal, that would have seen release just a year after Christopher Nolan‘s The Dark Knight.

Even a few of his cast members from that film appear in Fury Road such as Megan Gale who was signed up for Wonder Woman, and Hugh Keays-Byrne who was intended to play Martian Manhunter. The rest of the cast, which included Armie Hammer (Batman), Common (Green Lantern), Adam Brody (The Flash), DJ Cotrona (Superman), Jay Baruchel (Max Lord), and Santiago Cabrera (Aquaman) contained varying levels of inspiration and exasperation. A number of factors have been cited for why the film wasn’t able to beat Marvel’s The Avengers to the box office, including Nolan not wanting competing, unconnected Dark Knights on the big screen at the same time, a rising budget, and the writer’s strike of 2007-2008.

The biggest problem though? The script just wasn’t very good. At least not the draft I read, which was presumably the final one before production was scrapped. It was basically The OMAC Project combined with Tower of Babel combined with Crisis on Infinite Earths #8, along with an ill-advised fast food plot and some strikingly bad dialogue. This thing would have likely killed your Justice League dreams quicker than you could say “Ryan ReynoldsGreen Lantern“.

But, much like the documentary feature that will cover the disastrous production cycle that marked Tim Burton‘s Superman Lives, another team is looking to do the same for Justice League: Mortal.

Australian director Ryan Unicomb, along with producers Aaron Cater and Steven Caldwell, are aiming to cover what might have been with a documentary entitled, appropriately enough, Miller’s Justice League: Mortal. According to Unicomb, they have investors in place already and may turn to crowdfunding as well.

The filmmaker briefly spoke with Inside Film about the project:

We wanted to get the story out there to help us to gauge interest. I have always been fascinated with project, which would be in the same vein as 2013’s Jodorowsky’s Dune and this year’s The Death of Superman Lives: What Happened?

There’s no current timetable for release, and they’ve yet to approach Miller about the project. Hopefully they’ll be able to secure his participation, as I’m sure the story behind this initial Justice League attempt would prove fascinating.

Warner Bros, for their part, will be finally releasing a Justice League film in 2017, directed by Zack Snyder.

 

5 Comments on George Miller’s Justice League gets a “why didn’t this get made?” documentary, last added: 5/29/2015
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23. Robert Rodriguez set to helm Jonny Quest

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A film that’s been in development hell for a number of years may have finally found its ticket to the screen. Sin City and Desperado helmer Robert Rodriguez has signed on-board the long gestating live action adaptation of Jonny Quest for Warner Bros per THR.

Rodriguez will be teaming with Terry Rossio (The Pirates of the Carribean series) on the script, and will also direct in his first outing since the poorly received Sin City: A Dame To Kill For.

Jonny Quest, the 1964 Hanna-Barbera adventure series, centered on the title character and his globe-trotting missions with his father, side-kick Hadji, and bodyguard Race Bannon, lasted only one season, but it made a big mark on pop-culture via syndication and a few revival attempts.

Without Jonny Quest, we’d have no Venture Brothers, and what a sad, sad world that would be.

Previous attempts to adapt Quest for the big screen included a Zac Efron-Dwayne Johnson starring film, directed by Peter Segal. So, at the very least, one massive bullet was dodged. We’ll see what Rodriguez, who is needs a bounce-back in a big way, can bring to the table. Given that his Spy Kids series was a big hit, this may be just what the doctor ordered.

3 Comments on Robert Rodriguez set to helm Jonny Quest, last added: 5/27/2015
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24. And in further casting news, Chris Pine is probably playing Steve Trevor in Wonder Woman

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Variety just broke the news, and it looks as though the new Captain Kirk is about to suit up for a DC Comics based role.

According to their report, Chris Pine (Star Trek, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit) has entered negotiations with Warner Bros to play Steve Trevor in Wonder Woman, directed by Patty Jenkins (Monster).

Trevor is the long-time love interest of the title character, played by Gal Gadot. His current iteration in the New 52 relaunched DC Universe posits him as Wonder Woman’s U.S. Government liaison and the head of A.R.G.U.S. where he was seen in titles like Team 7 and Justice League of America.

Originally, there were rumors that Scott Eastwood would be taking on the role, but the trade also addressed that issue, stating that Eastwood had to choose between testing for Trevor or taking a guaranteed supporting role in David Ayer‘s Suicide Squad. Obviously, he ended up taking the latter option, though what role he landed on is unknown.

It seems likely that Warner Bros scoring an actor of Pine’s profile means that he’ll be signing on for a multiple picture appearance, which will surely include the first part of Zack Snyder‘s Justice League, set to release in 2017 along with Wonder Woman.

 

1 Comments on And in further casting news, Chris Pine is probably playing Steve Trevor in Wonder Woman, last added: 5/28/2015
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25. James Wan will direct Aquaman

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Making the announcement today, Warner Bros has unveiled that James Wan, whose Furious 7 has grossed over a billion and a half dollars worldwide, will be directing the Jason Momoa starring Aquaman.

Warner’s film chief Greg Silverman, who was the focus of Heidi’s post on DC films just a bit earlier today, had this to say about the new addition to the DC Cinematic line-up:

We’ve been so lucky to have worked with James, first on New Line’s ‘The Conjuring’ and now on their upcoming ‘The Conjuring 2 and are thrilled to have him on board as we continue to expand our DC slate. The ‘Aquaman’ film will be a major tentpole picture for us and James’s span of work has proven him able to take on any manner of project, bringing his incredible creative talent and unique voice to the material.

Producer Charles Roven added:

James is not only a great storyteller but can make action truly explode on the big screen and Jason has a dynamic presence that commands your attention. Together, they will bring an undeniable vitality and energy to this character as he headlines his first feature film.

Roven will produce alongside Deborah Snyder and Zack Snyder from a script by Kurt Johnstad (300: Rise of an Empire), which means that, sadly, the Jeff Nichols script won’t see the light of day; but Wan is a terrific addition to a group of filmmakers that thus far includes: the above mentioned Snyder (Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Justice League), David Ayer (Suicide Squad), Patty Jenkins (Wonder Woman), and some writing involvement at the very least by Phil Lord and Chris Miller (The Flash).

Momoa’s Aquaman will first appear in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice next year. Here’s how the press release describes the upcoming Aquaman:

An icon for over 70 years, Aquaman is the King of the Seven Seas. This reluctant ruler of Atlantis, caught between a surface world constantly ravaging the sea and Atlanteans looking to lash out in revolt, is committed to protecting the entire globe.

0 Comments on James Wan will direct Aquaman as of 6/3/2015 7:09:00 PM
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