It’s been a tragic end to 2016, so as we contemplate the sorrowful loss of Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, among others, let’s try to look forward to 2017.
In this week’s “So what happens to Princess Leia?” story, director Colin Trevorrow and producer Kathleen Kennedy have had a sit-down to discuss what is to happen to Princess Leia in the next two Star Wars trilogy films, VIII and IX. Turns out Carrie Fisher had already filmed all her scenes for Episode VIII, but was supposed to have an even larger role in IX. So what now?
The possibility of using a CG Carrie Fisher isn’t impossible, though it isn’t ideal. That technology is lots better than it used to be, but still isn’t perfect. Maybe some other kind of digital enhancement? I don’t know, but at least there’s plenty of time to figure it out. There is some information about what her scenes are in the next two Star Wars films, but I don’t want to spoil them. Frankly, I didn’t want to know yet, either.
In this week’s “Seems pointless” story, director of The Losers, Sylvain White, is slated to direct Screen Gems production of Slender Man, a horror film based on the internet creation of said character. Google Slender Man, furrow your brow, and wonder along with me why that’s happening. Well, you know, other than money.
In this week’s “Gilmore Girl to Handmaid’s Tale” story, actress Alexis Bledel is now cast as a recurring character on Hulu’s upcoming series The Handmaid’s Tale, based on the book of the same name by Margaret Atwood’s book of a dystopian drama.
Bledel will star as Ofglen, Offred’s (Elisabeth Moss) fellow Handmaid and companion. Her character description is as follows: “At first, Ofglen seems like a pious rule-follower, loyal to the oppressive Gilead system, but she turns out to be daring and subversive.”
Set in the dystopia of Gilead, a totalitarian society that was formerly part of the US and one that faces environmental disasters and plunging birthrates, the place is ruled by a twisted fundamentalism regime that treats women as property of the state. Moss stars as Offred, one of the few remaining fertile women who is forced into sexual servitude as an attempt to repopulate the world. The series will follow her as she goes from one miserable situation to the next, with hopes of finding the daughter that was taken from her.
Joseph Fiennes, Yvonne Strahovski, Samira Wiley, Max Minghella, Madeline Brewer, Ann Dowd, and O-T Fagbenle co-star.
In this week’s “Just don’t care” story, the Cars 3 trailer came out a while back – and I missed it. And frankly, I feel like I DIDN’T miss anything. I didn’t see the second Cars movie, and this one doesn’t really pique my interest either. Here’s the premise:
“McQueen is not the young hotshot anymore, the kid he was back then in Cars 1. He’s in the middle of his life, and as an athlete, that’s getting up there. You have your whole life ahead of you, yet your career is starting to show its age. He’s looking in the mirror and realizing, “I’m 40 years old,” and dealing with the fact that the thing that you love more than anything else, you might not be able to do forever.”
I don’t need any reminders of my age, thanks.
In this week’s “Ok, it’s a Netflix show, BUT…” story, Drew Barrymore will be starring in a new comedy series on Netflix called The Santa Clarita Diet, and it’s a special new diet that will make you look younger, have more energy and feel sexy. The meal plan also includes an added bonus that you might not expect.
Barrymore plays California realtor Sheila Hammond, but the major twist is that… she eats people. Good times! Her husband will be played by the awesome Timothy Olyphant.
This sounds fun! Netflix really does have great shows.
In this week’s “Why must we always find different names for zombies” story, Gemma Arterton stars in what is being touted as one of the best horror films of 2017 already. The film, The Girl With All the Gifts, stars Arterton, Paddy Considine, and Glenn Close. And it actually does sound like a different take on the zombie genre, which is the only way I’ll watch more zombie stuff. The Walking Dead gives me all the zombies I need right now. But here is the synopsis:
“The near future: humanity has been all but destroyed by a fungal disease that eradicates free will and turns its victims into flesh eating “hungries.” Only a small group of children seem immune to its effects. At an army base in rural England, this group of unique children are being studied and subjected to cruel experiments. But one little girl, Melanie, stands out from the rest.”
Ok, I’m in, even though they insist on using the term “hungries”. Ugh.
In this week’s “Battle of the Ages” story, Thor: Ragnarok arrives November 3, 2017. And it’s going to showcase some Thor vs Hulk action. BOOM. But here’s the synopsis to make you salivate:
“In Marvel Studios’ Thor: Ragnarok, Thor is imprisoned on the other side of the universe without his mighty hammer and finds himself in a race against time to get back to Asgard to stop Ragnarok — the destruction of his homeworld and the end of Asgardian civilization — at the hands of an all-powerful new threat, the ruthless Hela. But first he must survive a deadly gladiatorial contest that pits him against his former ally and fellow Avenger — the Incredible Hulk!”
The excellent director Taika Waititi (Hunt For the Wilder People, What We Do In the Shadows) says he’s bringing “a very “Taika-esque tone” for Thor: Ragnarok, with a “’70s / ’80s sci-fi fantasy” vibe and plenty of opportunities for Hemsworth to show off his comedy chops.”
Sounds super fun!
In this week’s “More Marvel fun” story, actor Sterling K. Brown, who recently garnered a Golden Globe nomination for his work on This Is Us, has joined the cast of Marvel’s Black Panther. He will play N’Jobu, a figure from T’Challa’s (Black Panther) past.
Angela Bassett, Michael B. Jordan, Forest Whitaker, Lupita Nyong’o, and Danai Gurira are also on board. Creed helmer Ryan Coogler will direct.
In this week’s “Another passenger on the Orient Express” story, actor Willem Dafoe has joined the cast of 20th Century Fox’s Murder On the Orient Express. He’ll be starring with a fine ensemble: Kenneth Branagh, Johnny Depp, Daisy Ridley, Michelle Pfeiffer, Penelope Cruz, Josh Gad, Judi Dench, Michael Pena, Leslie Odom and Lucy Boynton. The newly imagined film is, of course, based on the iconic 1934 book by Agatha Christie. Dafoe will play undercover detective Gerhard Hardman in the hotly anticipated film being directed by Branagh.
In this week’s “Forever Chucky” story, if you love Chucky, the sinister doll from Child’s Play, well, we have more of him for you. The film, Cult of Chucky, has been officially announced, and will start filming next week. Universal thinks it knows what you want to see.
Cult of Chucky will see the return of Don Mancini (the writer of all seven movies and the director of the past two) in the director’s chair, but he won’t be the only familiar name in the credits. Brad Dourif will once again play the voice of Chucky, the doll possessed by the soul of a maniacal criminal, and Jennifer Tilly will return as his bride, Tiffany. On the human side of the equation, Fiona Dourif will return as Nica Pierce, one of the survivors of Curse of Chucky, while Alex Vincent reprises the role of original Chucky owner Andy Barclay for the the fifth time.
Wow. 30 years and counting, people. Chucky ain’t going anywhere soon.
In this week’s “New Mutants, young Professor X” story, the New Mutants film which is supposed to start shooting in the next few months, will include James McAvoy as Professor X. So, that’s neat.
New Mutants will focus on the traditional lineup of Mirage, Magik, Cannonball, Sunspot, and Wolfsbane. Taylor-Joy is reportedly being eyed for Magik, and Game of Thrones‘ Maisie Williams is said to be up for Wolfsbane. Paper Towns‘ Nat Wolff is rumored to be in the running for Cannonball. There was also a story going around that Alexandra Shipp might reprise her X-Men: Apocalypse role as Storm, but that part has yet to be confirmed.
New Mutants is aiming to shoot in spring 2017 for release sometime in 2018.
In this week’s “Predator gets funny” story, Keegan-Michael Key joins the cast of the Shane Black-directed reboot of Predator. He’ll be joining actors Trevante Rhodes, Boyd Holbrook and Olivia Munn. Fox has slotting the film for a February 9, 2018 release.
In this week’s “Directing has it’s privileges” story, Rogue One director Gareth Edwards put himself in a scene of the film, because, hey, why the Hell not? He plays the rebel soldier who disengages the Tantive IV from Admiral Raddus’ s ship. It’s a minor role, but a rather important one: he saves Pincess Leia, C-3PO, R2-D2, and the Death Star plans.
Well, if you’re going to give yourself a cameo, make it a good one.
~ Neil T Weakley, your average movie-goer, signing off. See you next week for more shenanigans!