Greetings and salutation, everyone! Welcome to another week of informative and vexing news stories in the world of film?
Hey, the Blade Runner sequel release date has been moved up to October 2017! We’ll be pleased or disappointed at an earlier date! so, Oct. 6, 2017 is the new date, as Alcon Entertainment pre-production in high gear. Cinematographer Roger Deakins is to return to shoot this sequel, which stars Harrison Ford back as Deckard, with Ryan Gosling and Robin Wright, and recently added to the cast is Ana de Armas (Knock Knock).
Warner Bros. is handling the U.S. distribution, with Sony doing the International part. Ridley Scott will Executive Produce with Sicario director Denis Villeneuve directing.
In this week’s “Does everything have to be a Universe now?” story, if you’re not sick of the whole Marvel Universe yet, then get ready for the Hasbro Universe! That’s right, Paramount Pictures and Hasbro, Inc. have teamed up to set up a writers room for the Hasbro Properties, with Akiva Goldsman overseeing the scribes.
The featured brands include G.I.Joe, Micronauts, Visionaries, M.A.S.K. (Mobile Armoured Strike Command) and ROM. So now there are going to be films that cross these properties in film projects. Ok, I have to admit, I was big on the Micronauts as a kid. And even ROM. I had all sorts of those toys. But a movie Universe of them? Might be a bit much.
In this week’s “China will eventually rule the world” story, China’s giant Dalan Wanda group has confirmed plans to absorb Legendary Entertainment into it’s Shenzhen-listed theaters subsidiary Wanda Cinema Line. Wanda unveiled these plans back in January of this year, a deal that will cost them up to $3.5 billion.
Robert Downey, Jr. will appear in Spiderman: Homecoming as Tony Stark. Last week, the word was that Michael Keaton may be on board as the villain, but THIS week the word is that may not work out, so the search for someone to play the antagonist is back on. A lot can change in a week in the entertainment industry, folks.
And speaking of Michael Keaton, he’ll be starring in the film The Founder, in theaters this Aug 4. Keaton plays Ray Kroc, milkshake-machine-salesman-turned-fast-food-empire-owner, who made McDonald’s into a billion dollar chain and one of the most powerful brands in the world.
Kroc began working for Mac and Dick McDonald (John Carroll Lynch and Nick Offerman) as a franchising agent in 1954. Impressed by the brothers’ speedy system of making food in the Southern California burger operation, he saw franchise potential and bought the chain for $2.7 million in 1961. People are already talking possible Oscar material. Well, I’ll always root for Michael Keaton.
In this week’s “Back to what works” story, Matt Damon is back with a vengeance in the full-length trailer for Jason Bourne. The sequel arrives in theater July 29, and re-teams Damon with director Paul Greengrass, who directed The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum. It looks like it could be pretty good, too.
In this week’s “superfluous remake” story, The Vampire Diaries alum Nina Dobrev is in talks to costar with Ellen Page in Sony’s Flatliner’s remake. Oh, and there’s going to be a Flatliner’s remake.
Diego Luna is also on board to star in the film from The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo helmer Niels Arden Oplev. Ben Ripley wrote the screenplay and Laurence Mark will produce with Michael Douglas. Production is expected to start in early July.
The original 1990 thriller followed a group of medical students who experimented with “near death” experiences that involved past tragedies until the dark consequences began to jeopardize their lives.
Is the original Flatliners really so important a film that we need an updated version? The answer you’re looking for is “No”.
In this week’s “Gee, I didn’t see THAT coming”, story, in a stunning stroke of genius, the new Baywatch remake film will feature an appearance by none other than the original C.J. Parker herself, Pamela Anderson. Ironically, Anderson will not be reprising her role, as actress Kelly Rohrbach is playing C.J. Parker in this reboot. Well, that’s confusing. Let’s just move on, shall we?
Here’s a story that leaves us with no real answers at all: Robert Downey, Jr. spoke up about the possibility of a Sherlock Holmes 3 film. He says that whenever he’s in London he tries to meet up with director Guy Ritchie and they apparently would like to attempt to make it this year. But there’s no word on if a script is done or even what the story would be. So, basically, we don’t know much of anything. guy Ritchie is just finishing up his King Arthur movie, but Downey, Jr. has a schedule chock full of Iron Man, so…we’re pretty much back at square one.
In this week’s “Surprise! People actually saw our movie!” story, the Will Ferrel/Mark Wahlberg comedy, Daddy’s Home, came out a week after the new Star Wars film. I didn’t think anybody even saw it, and I heard nothing about it. I just assumed it came and went unnoticed by EVERYone. Well, apparently not, because Paramount has signed them both on to do a sequel. Yep. Turns out Daddy’s Home made about $150 million in the states and $ 90 million more overseas. That’s crazy. I mean, Ferrell and Wahlberg actually make a good pair on film, I liked The Other Guys, but this thing just went under the radar.
In this week’s “Didn’t I just write a review of this?” story, it seems Warner Bros. has it’s own Jungle Book movie coming out. And it’s directed by Andy Serkis. They’ve signed filmmaker Alfonso Cuaron (Gravity) to lend a hand on this version of it, too. They just finished production but recently delayed it’s release date from October 6, 2017 to October 19, 2018. Cuaron will “give notes on the project and see if there are ways to take the extra time to improve the picture.” Serkis has already stated that he’s “absolutely thrilled” with the delay. Gee, I don’t know if I’d be so thrilled. Unless it really needs that much help. Maybe NONE of us should be thrilled.
In this week’s “Good for you!” story, Emilia Clarke has turned down any involvement in future Terminator projects. When asked about it being in any more Terminator films, she said, “No. Can I say that? It’s okay. No. Uh-uh. But I have some very different roles coming up.” Oh, stop, Emilia, I already love you, no need to prove anything by making smart decisions just for me. 😉
In this week’s “Oh, this could go very wrong” story, a big screen adaptation of Three’s Company is on its’ way. The original TV series was adapted from a British TV show, and it starred the great John Ritter, Joyce DeWitt, and Suzanne Somers. They were roommates in an apartment and had to pretend Ritter’s character was gay in order to live there because the owner of the building wouldn’t let a guy live with two women. My two problems? One, John Ritter was perfect and I don’t know how you find someone to measure up. Two: isn’t this kind of an archaic notion? You’d have to set this in a really backwards-thinking state, which, sadly, we still have in this country. It just seems like a dated idea. And even if you got this made, wouldn’t you offend a lot of gay people? This just seems like a bad idea all around.
Hey, actor Willem DeFoe has joined the cast of the Justice League movies. He will play an unspecified “good guy”. Production began last week on the part one, under the direction of Zack Snyder. Damn. So, I guess that means Warner Bros. couldn’t back out of keeping Snyder in the directors chair. Yikes.
In this week’s “Is this another one of his pranks?” story, Joaquin Phoenix is being considered as a leading contender to play Jesus in Garth Davis’ Mary Magdalene film, joining Rooney Mara. The film’s production company See-Saw Films, which is teaming with Universal Pictures Intl. Productions on the project, is in early talks with the actor’s representatives, WME and Sloane Offer. Yeah, ok, I guess I can see Joaquin as Jesus. Kinda makes me chuckle, though.
And in this week’s “You talkin’ to me?” story, Robert De Niro wasted no time in giving his fans what they wanted at Thursday night’s 40th anniversary screening of Taxi Driver at the Tribeca film festival in New York.
“Every day for 40 fucking years,” he said in introducing the film, “at least one of you has come up to me and said – what do you think – ‘You talkin’ to me?’” The two-time Oscar winner then led a group chant of Taxi Driver’s most famous line before the screening got under way, followed by a discussion that reunited De Niro with director Martin Scorsese, writer Paul Schrader and co-stars Jodie Foster, Cybill Shepherd and Harvey Keitel.
Here’s something I didn’t know: the mohawk sported by DeNiro at the end of Taxi Driver was not real. It was a scalp prosthetic piece. I always thought DeNiro shaved his head, but he couldn’t – he was to shoot his next film The Last Tycoon and needed all his hair. Go figure.
Ok, that’s the dope on this week’s film news shenanigans! See you next week!
~ Neil T Weakley, your average movie-goer, reporting all the film news that’s fit – or not fit – to print.