Hey look, another week has passed, and more crazy news has happened. Ain’t that a kick in the head?
And I just found out from Variety online that Bruce Willis is going to star in a Death Wish remake! Negotiations to direct are the Israeli team that made Big Bad Wolves in 2013, Aharon Keshales and Navot Papushado. It is written by Joe Carnahan, Dan Gilroy, and Graham Yost. I’m not sure if this remake is a good idea or not, but at least it’s been over 40 years since the original, so maybe there will be something positive about it. If they go with a fun, retro, meat and potatoes revenge style film a la John Wick, I could be on board.
Zootopia grabs 1.7 million dollars of Thursday night box office money, while predictions are putting it at about 67 million for the weekend. And here I heard it was only OK, and not great. I’ll have to check it and see. Those sloths are funny, right? Because they work at the DMV, and they always seem to take forever there. See what they did there, with that waiting forever at the DMV and the it’s like sloths work there or something? Uh huh.
And speaking of Disney, they’re developing a film based on The Nutcracker called The Nutcracker and the Four Realms, and so far have Lasse Halstrom to direct. Ashleigh Powell is onboard to write the script, based on The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by E.T.A. Hoffmann.
Samuel Goldwyn Films has has acquired the North American rights to Bang Gang (A Modern Love Story), a sex drama that is the feature debut by French filmmaker Eva Husson. The film explores the sexual exploits and awakenings of a group of teenagers in Biarritz, France in the age of social media. Samuel Goldwyn Films is planning a limited theatrical release in late spring.
Peter Goldwyn of Samuel Goldwyn Films said, “The film captures contemporary, adolescent sexual exploration in an honest and seldom-portrayed manner. It’s both beautifully shot and acted and tackles a taboo subject matter head on without shying away from the realities of teenage sexuality in a world where any moment can be captured and shared instantaneously.”
So, MGM is going to make a film based on this toy company called KidRobot. MGM has signed director Robert Rugan to make it and producer Scott Averson (The Last Airbender) is producing. Matt Ember and Tom Astle, whose recent work consists of animated films Home and Epic, penned the script. None of this impresses me, or should it anyone else, I’d think. And it’s supposedly going to be live action. However, the director has several projects in development, among them Genies at Paramount and Chip ‘n’ Dale, Disney big-screen take on their snarky rodents. I’m still not impressed.
Oh look, Tyler Perry has a new Madea movie coming out. Boo! A Madea Halloween, releases October 21 of this year. I’m not sure how to feel about this.
Universal has an astronaut comedy coming out on Memorial Day weekend 2017, starring Seth Rogen, Zack Galifianakis, and Bill Hader. It will go up against – oh great – the fifith installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales. The story centers on astronauts who happen upon a mysterious craft and find that they are not equipped to represent humankind in a battle of intelligent life. I think I’ll still see this yet unnamed astronaut comedy before another torturously over-blown Captain Jack and the “let’s buy another island” movie with Johnny Depp.
Oh crap. Tony Dyson, the man who built R2 D2, was found dead in his home on the Maltese Island of Gozo (not to be insenstive here, but are we sure that isn’t the name of a place in the Star Wars Universe?). He wasn’t heard from for a few days so his freinds called the authorities. It appears to have been natural causes, as no foul play is apparent. Dyson was 68 years old.
A film called Russ and Roger Go Beyond is penned by Emmy-winner Christopher Cluess (“The Simpsons,” “SNL”), tells the true story of famed film critic Roger Ebert and schlock director Russ Meyer, who teamed up to make the out there Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls. Eyeing the project to direct is Once Director John Carney. Will Ferrell is to play Russ Meyer, and Josh Gad to be Roger Ebert. Sound like a hoot if you ask me. Color me intrigued.
Cowen and Co. analyst, DougCreutz says the outlook for film industry profitability “is looking increasingly dire,”. Indeed, “2016 could be a pivotally negative year in the economic fortunes of one of America’s highest-profile industries.”
The main problem is that too many studios make too many big-budget franchise films. This year studios will release 30 pics that cost $100 million or more to produce, up from 22 last year. The ones that succeed strike gold. But the increased competition lowers the odds for any one to break out. “Ultimately, we think many of these incremental blockbuster films are not going to work, and incur significant losses for their studios,” the analyst says.
Yeah, and most of the major studios’ operating income increased by 5.5 % to $ 5.2 Billion this past year. However, it was only Disney, Universal, and Dreamworks Animation that saw their film-related bottom lines grow from 2014. Warner Bros, Fox, Lionsgate, Sony and Paramount saw profits decline. And Disney and Universal accounted for 70.5% of the industry’s operating income, with Disney alone seeing 46.8%. That means the other six split less than 30%. I guess Disney buying Marvel was smart, right? The tent pole film explosion may implode before long.
Ah, the long-gestating Spider-Man spin-off film, Venom, has been revived, as Sony has hired Dante Harper to write the thing. The plot is being kept under wraps for now, but apparently they want to make this it’s own series of films. Okie dokie.
In this week’s “WTF is going on?” story, (and sorry if I’m behind on this – I missed the whole Sony hack thing), it turns out Sony Pictures is moving forward with a 21 Jump Street/Men In Black cross-over film! I’m sorry, WHAT? In what appears to me as a thoroughly vexing and mind-bogglingly fruitless endeavor, director James Bobin (The Muppets movie, and recently the Alice Through The Looking Glass film) is in talks to direct this dubious notion of a cross-over. Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum are set to reprise their roles, however, Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones will not be in this, because Sony wants to reboot the franchise with younger actors – and likely save a ton of money. Hell, they better save some money because I don’t see how this mash-up is justifiable in any context. How about just save your money and don’t make it at all?
~ Neil T Weakley, your average movie-goer, simply can’t believe a Jump Street/Men In Black movie is actually real.