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    Monday
    Oct112010

    Deathly Hallows "The Hunt Begins" Banners Revealed

    We're just shy of six weeks away from the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 (in glorious non-3D), and The Leaky Cauldron has unveiled some terrific new character banners in a series called "The Hunt Begins." 

    Other character banners in the series (which you can see here) include images of Hermione and Ron, Bellatrix Lestrange and Lucius Malfoy, Fenrir Greyback and one of the Snatchers.

    This new series is really building up the chase aspect of Part 1 of the Potter finale, which has Harry, Ron and Hermione alone and on the run from all evil wizarding types while they search for the missing Horcruxes holding pieces of Voldemort's soul.

    In other Deathly Hallows news, Variety has an interesting article up today regarding WB's decision to scrap the 3D version of Part 1, which is scheduled to open on November 19.  While acknowledging that the studio will take a hit financially with 3D conversion costs that had been spent on the film so far and lost revenue from those pricey 3D tickets they won't be selling in November, it does appear that WB did actually give a damn how the 3D was going to look.  And it's Harry Potter...so, they'll make the money back anyway.

    But be rest assured, we will be getting a 3D version of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II next summer.

    Monday
    Oct112010

    WB Expecting Flash & Green Lantern 2 Drafts by Christmas 

    After years of seeing Marvel one-up them, Warner Brothers/DC Entertainment is slowly, but surely, getting the leg up – especially when you factor in Marvel starting to show they're far from bullet-proof in the eyes of fandom (i.e. Iron Man 2 sucking, the Edward Norton situation, the uncertainty of Captain America and Thor next summer, etc.)

    Fans will be treated to Martin Campbell's Green Lantern (deep in post-production) next June and 2012 will be their big nut with Christopher Nolan's Batman 3 for July 20, 2012 and the Zack Snyder-directed, Nolan-produced Superman: The Man of Steel for that Christmas.

    There have yet to be any concrete plans beyond 2012, although the studio is certainly getting the ball rolling with The Flash and a Green Lantern sequel being commissioned in the writing development stage of the game. "TOLDJA" reports the script for the Scarlet Speedster and a treatment for a potential Lantern follow-up are expected to be turned in by this Christmas at the latest. Both are concurrently being written by Lantern scribes Greg Berlanti, Michael Green and Marc Guggenheim.

    Meanwhile, our pals at Movie Hole report that although it's in the early days of The Flash. The studio is, not surprisingly, eyeing actors to potentially wear the red-and-gold suit. Word is through their spies that the front-runner for Barry Allen is none other than Bradley Cooper, star of the studio's mad-money printing comedy The Hangover and its currently-filming Memorial Day 2011 sequel. If you'll remember, Cooper was a leading contender for Hal Jordan before Ryan Reynolds nabbed it.

    Monday
    Oct112010

    Spider-Man Versus Rhys Ifans

    Within the next couple of hours, we're going to hear nothing but rumors from both the honest-to-Christ people in the know and losers dressed up in costumes from Grandma’s basement on this one.

    Sony has officially announced Rhys Ifans (best known as Spike, the idiot roommate of Hugh Grant in Notting Hill) has been cast as the villain in Marc Webb's Spider-Man reboot. Just what Spidey heavy will the actor (also set to appear in Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows) is the big question and the studio isn't planning on answering that anytime soon.

    Personally I have no idea, and there are honestly any number of baddies he could be portraying – yes, including Venom, as earlier rumored to be circled around Phillip Seymour Hoffman. I was particularly amused to see in their press release how it was his performance in Roland Emmerich's Anonymous that helped secure him the role.

    Monday
    Oct112010

    Martin Freeman Admits to Hobbit Candidacy

    It's a moot point, right now, but interesting to note.

    A couple of weeks back, The Sun reported an offer had been extended to Martin Freeman for the lead Bilbo Baggins role in The Hobbit, but was forced to turn it down. Few to none of us believed it on face value because the UK tabloids do have that "making shit up" reputation.

    So it was a surprise to hear Entertainment Weekly not only confirm the news-item as truth, but state a second offer was sent to the British actor to accommodate both the epic Hobbit shoot (reported to be around 13-14 months long) and a second season of the BBC hit Sherlock next year.

    No word on how it was received by Freeman and his representation. But it must not have worked out as the actor confirms to Empire that he did indeed have to reject the initial deal from Warner Brothers, MGM and the key Hobbit decision-makers like Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh. Although he remains upbeat something can be arranged, the fact that he's come out and publicly acknowledged any of this suggests it fell through and we won't see him follow in the foot-steps of Sir Ian Holm.

    That is once the dust settles and The Hobbit actually gets made. That isn't exactly a sure-thing at the moment, anyway.

    Monday
    Oct112010

    Mad Max: Fury Road Delayed Indefinitely

    George Miller's two planned Mad Max sequels (Fury Road and Furiosa) won't be ramping for production anytime in the near-future. According to The Australian (via Movie Hole), filming has been delayed for a second time and the soonest cameras will roll won't be until early 2012.

    This comes despite hundred of vehicles having been designed and built, a full cast locked down (headlined by Inception's Tom Hardy as Max and Charlize Theron) and second-unit photography already underway. No explanation for the hold-up was given.

    I can only assume financing fell through – I believe they were being independently funded with a distribution lined up with Warner Brothers. If they're not expecting to get up and rolling again until two years from now, I can't honestly expect these Mad Max films to happen at all. That's one Helluva long wait, and it's only a matter of time before people like Hardy and Theron throw in the towel.

    Monday
    Oct112010

    The Bourne Vacation

    When it was announced a few days ago Tony Gilroy would step into the director's chair for The Bourne Legacy (he was first commissioned to write the script), it still didn't answer the big question on everyone's mind. Will Matt Damon return as Jason Bourne?

    He's made it crystal-clear (on several occasions) he won’t return without director Paul Greengrass. But it appears the filmmakers and Universal has found a suitable route to go on the fourth installment: just don't include the Bourne character at all and have an entirely new character as the lead.

    Gilroy confirms that's the plan to Hollywood Elsewhere:

    "The easiest way to think of it is an expansion or a reveal. Jason Bourne will not be in this film, but he's very much alive. What happened in the first three films is the trigger for what happens. I'm building a legend and an environment and a wider conspiracy...the world we're making enhances and advances and invites Jason Bourne's return [down the road].

    Everything you saw in the first three films actually happened, and everyone who got into will be rewarded for paying attention. We're going to show you the bigger picture, the bigger canvas. When you see what we're going and see what we're doing it'll be pretty obvious....but Jason Bourne's activities in the first three films is the immediate trigger."

    Creatively speaking, I'm quite intrigued. Can't say audiences will be nearly as interested though. I can already imagine angry movie-goers wanting to know where Jason Bourne is when his name is clearly on the title of the film.

    Sunday
    Oct102010

    Weekend Box Office: October 8-10

     Courtesy of Box Office Mojo:

    1.  The Social Network - $15.5 million

    2.  Life as We Know It - $14.6 million

    3.  Secretariat - $12.6 million

    4.  Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole - $7 million

    5.  My Soul to Take - $6.9 million

    6.  The Town - $6.3 million

    7.  Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps - $4.6 million

    8.  Easy A - $4.2 million

    9.  Case 39 - $2.6 million

    10.  You Again - $2.4 million

    David Fincher's The Social Network survived this weekend's new releases to hold on to the top spot, dropping only 31% from its opening last weekend to earn $15.5 million.  The film has grossed $46 million in just under ten days.

    Life as We Know It, starring Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel, opened slightly lower than expected, landing in second place with $14.6 million, although that's still a healthy opening weekend for a romantic comedy.  While it didn't have a spectacular opening weekend, Disney's Secretariat opened decently with $12.6 million. 

    The weekend's other new release, Wes Craven's My Soul To Take, didn't have such a great weekend, despite opening in 3D at most theaters.  In fact, the horror film's $6.9 million opening couldn't even beat out Piranha 3D's $10.1 million opening a few weeks ago.

    Zack Snyder's animated Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole earned another $7 million, bringing its total to an okay, but not great $39 million.  Better news for holdovers The Town and Easy A, which have brought their domestica totals up to $73 million and $48 million, respectively. 

    Fading steadily from the top ten are Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, which dropped 53% to earn $4.6 million, the much-delayed horror film Case 39, which has yet to cross the $10 million mark after two weeks of release (the same could be said for Let Me In, which fell out of the top ten completely in its second weekend), and Disney's comedy You Again, which even Betty White couldn't save from a tenth place finish with only $2.4 million. 

    Next weekend should bring some excitement back to the box office, with the sequel Jackass 3D and the geezer action film Red opening in theaters.

    Saturday
    Oct092010

    New Red Band Trailer "Faster"

    IGN has released the new red band trailer for the Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson action thriller Faster which opens November 24.

    The film is a straight up revenge shoot em' up action flick with The Rock at the center of it kicking ass and takin' names, killing anyone who gets in his way. This is a nice change of pace for the once wrestling stars film career, as of lately he's been feratured predominantly only family friendly Disney flicks as opposed to the kick ass action we really wanted to see him in.

    Here's the synopsis:

    A stint in prison usually has one of two effects on a man – it either breaks him down or makes him stronger. For Driver (Dwayne Johnson), a 10-year sentence proved the latter. His strength was not just fueled by time, but also by a hunger to avenge the murder of his brother during the botched bank robbery that led to his own imprisonment. Untouchable on the 'inside,' he made plenty of enemies in prison - men who were counting the days until his release so they could exact their own revenge on the outside. Now, on the day of his release, he is hell-bent on reaping vengeance upon the four men responsible for his brother's murder. With a list of names and addresses in hand, he sprints out of the prison gates and is immediately on his mission.

    No regard for witnesses. No finesse to the acts. One down. Check. Within hours of Driver eliminating the first name on the list, two men are on his trail – Cop (Billy Bob Thornton), a veteran police officer just days from retirement, and Killer (Oliver Jackson-Cohen), a young egocentric hitman with a flair for the art of killing. The hunter is now also the hunted.

    Without hesitation, Driver methodically continues down his list while the mystery deepens surrounding his brother's murder and who might have tipped off those responsible to their robbery plans. With each killing, Driver finds himself face to face with Cop or Killer and he evades them every time. Killer wants Driver now more than ever – he's finally met a worthy opponent. Thus begins a do or die race to the list's finish with new details in the decade old murder emerging along the way...hinting that Driver's list may be incomplete and his life in further danger.

    Friday
    Oct082010

    DC Comic Films To Take Place of Harry Potter Franchise

    After what seems to be eons after Marvel found the right formula to successful film franchises WB is finally trying their hand at one or two DC Comic related properties to be released each year in the absence of the Harry Potter franchise. DC Comics Creative Chief Officer, Geoff Johns, announced the news at  this years New York Comic Con.

    No doubt WB is banking on Green Lantern to be a pretty big property in the same way Iron Man was for Marvel. They have had great success with the Batman franchise but other works like Superman Returns and especially Jonah Hex have fallen way below expectations. Expect to see characters like Flash, Wonder Woman, and possibly even Aquaman to follow the recent Green Lantern boom of interest. 

    I assume the ultimate goal is to eventually produce a Justice League film much like Marvel has done for The Avengers and has an avid DC Comics fan, this news has me pumped for the potential future of these properties. 

    Friday
    Oct082010

    Green Lantern Trailer Confirmed for Potter

    It was only rumored earlier, but now official from Geoff Johns own Twitter account.

    The Green Lantern trailer will indeed be debuted with Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 1.  Its not really a huge bit of news more so than an official confirmation.

    Potter is in theatres November 19th this year, while Green Lantern bursts onto screens June 17th 2011.