Monday, August 31, 2009

Disney Owns Marvel Entertainment


"A huge announcement this morning - Disney is going to acquire Marvel Entertainment for $4 billion!

Building on its strategy of delivering quality branded content to people around the world, The Walt Disney Company has agreed to acquire Marvel Entertainment, Inc. in a stock and cash transaction, the companies announced today.

Under the terms of the agreement and based on the closing price of Disney on August 28, 2009, Marvel shareholders would receive a total of $30 per share in cash plus approximately 0.745 Disney shares for each Marvel share they own. At closing, the amount of cash and stock will be adjusted if necessary so that the total value of the Disney stock issued as merger consideration based on its trading value at that time is not less than 40% of the total merger consideration.

Based on the closing price of Disney stock on Friday, August 28, the transaction value is $50 per Marvel share or approximately $4 billion.

'This transaction combines Marvel’s strong global brand and world-renowned library of characters including Iron Man, Spider-Man, X-Men, Captain America, Fantastic Four and Thor with Disney’s creative skills, unparalleled global portfolio of entertainment properties, and a business structure that maximizes the value of creative properties across multiple platforms and territories,' said Robert A. Iger, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company. 'Ike Perlmutter and his team have done an impressive job of nurturing these properties and have created significant value. We are pleased to bring this talent and these great assets to Disney.'

'We believe that adding Marvel to Disney’s unique portfolio of brands provides significant opportunities for long-term growth and value creation,' Iger said.

'Disney is the perfect home for Marvel’s fantastic library of characters given its proven ability to expand content creation and licensing businesses,' said Ike Perlmutter, Marvel’s Chief Executive Officer. 'This is an unparalleled opportunity for Marvel to build upon its vibrant brand and character properties by accessing Disney’s tremendous global organization and infrastructure around the world.'

Under the deal, Disney will acquire ownership of Marvel including its more than 5,000 Marvel characters. Mr. Perlmutter will oversee the Marvel properties, and will work directly with Disney’s global lines of business to build and further integrate Marvel’s properties.

The Boards of Directors of Disney and Marvel have each approved the transaction, which is subject to clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act, certain non-United States merger control regulations, effectiveness of a registration statement with respect to Disney shares issued in the transaction and other customary closing conditions. The agreement will require the approval of Marvel shareholders. Marvel was advised on the transaction by BofA Merrill Lynch.

UPDATE #1: In a conference call, the companies said that the deals for movies for characters at other studios (Spider-Man, X-Men, etc.) will stay in place under the terms set by Marvel and the other studios.

UPDATE #2: John Lasseter met with Marvel last week about a possible team-up between Marvel and Pixar and got 'pretty excited, pretty fast.' They say there's definitely an opportunity there.

UPDATE #3: The deal with Paramount Pictures to distribute Iron Man 2, Thor, The First Avenger: Captain America and The Avengers stays in place as well, but Disney would like to self-distribute down the line. 'When the time comes we'll take a closer look at it.' It was actually stated that the deal still included five films, so that is one more film after The Avengers."


Continuing information from FilmSchoolRejects:

"As you probably know by now, the big entertainment news of the day is The Walt Disney Company buying Marvel Entertainment. Shortly after the $4 billion dollar deal was announced, a shareholder conference call was held to explain some of the details. If you didn’t have a chance to sit through the call yourself, don’t worry, as we’ve got you covered. Below you will find our quick guide to what is going on — based on the information we have in front of us.

1. Disney has an 'If it ain’t broke…' viewpoint toward Marvel Studios. Walt Disney President Bob Iger said specifically that Disney will have an 'if it ain’t broke…' attitude when it comes to the future of Marvel films. All of the creative control — including use of 3D, which characters will get movies, etc — will remain in the hands of the people who know the Marvel Universe best: the people at Marvel. Sure, this might change down the road, but the initial sentiment is that Disney does not intend to come in and take control of Marvel’s creative world.

2. All previous deals are still in place. Paramount is still going to distribute up to five more Marvel Studios films, including Thor, The First Avenger: Captain America, Iron Man 2 and The Avengers. The also could still distribute an Ant-Man movie. As well, there are still existing deals in which other studios hold the cinematic rights to certain characters. Those are not changing. So Spider-Man is staying at Sony, X-Men is staying with Fox, and so on. Disney intends to bring those characters back in-house at some point, but there’s no indication that it will be happening anytime soon.

3. John Lasseter has met with Marvel about a Pixar team-up. Executives stated that not only has John Lasseter, the man behind Pixar and now Disney Animation, already met with the folks at Marvel, but that they were also so excited that they had to be told to calm down. The meaning here is simple: something is brewing between Marvel and Pixar, and there’s no way that can be a bad thing.

4. Disney is a brand machine. From a film marketing standpoint — and for that matter, a brand marketing standpoint — Disney is a powerhouse. Pirates of the Caribbean, the films of Pixar and all the way down to television with shows such as 'Lost' via their ownership of ABC, Disney knows how to sell a brand. And selling the Marvel brand means more Marvel fans, more recognition in the mainstream and for those of us keeping score, more money down the road to make Marvel movies.

5. Disney backing means Marvel budgets. Disney is a smart company. During the conference call they said, in effect, that their goal is to shine a brighter light on Marvel. Which likely means marketing dollars, added funding for development and (hopefully) increased marketshare. With big Daddy Disney backing them up financially, Marvel will be able to operate at a higher level. Assuming creative control stays the same (which appears to be the case), Marvel fans can only count on more of what they love from their favorite brand.

6. A lot of details are yet to be hashed out. One very important thing to keep in mind is that there will be a great gestation period here. Marvel Entertainment has a lot of existing deals — theme parks, movie distribution, etc. — and all of those contract will be honored by Disney. It will take them a long time to reign in the Marvel Universe and obtain full creative control.

As you can see, there are good intentions all around — Disney doesn’t want to screw up their $4 billion dollar purchase, so its likely that they will let the highly profitable Marvel Studios do their thing. The questions don’t arise until far down the line, when Disney begins to take back the rights to Marvel characters. How will they handle these franchises? How many movies will they release per year? All of these questions are yet to be answered, and may not be answered for a long time. At this point, all we can say is that this deal appears to be a good one for Marvel.

Update: Paramount Pictures had the following to say via press release today:

'Paramount Pictures has enjoyed a productive and fruitful relationship with Marvel Studios from the start of our distribution agreement in 2005,' the statement began. “So much so, we announced a five-picture slate distribution deal last year which includes worldwide distribution rights for upcoming films: Iron Man 2, Thor, The First Avenger: Captain America, Avengers, and Iron Man 3. This distribution deal will be unaffected by today’s transaction. We look forward to continuing to work with Marvel and, with today’s announcement, to working with Disney to replicate the incredible success of Iron Man on all our future collaborative projects.'

Looks like all is well in the love triangle of Marvel/Paramount/Disney. All three have nothing to lose and everything to gain by seeing Marvel’s movies churn out a profit, so I would suspect that they will all play nice until the contract is up."

FURTHER continuing information from Jim Hill Media:

"Mickey, meet Spidey. Spidey, Mickey. In a deal that (I’m sure) the Disneyana community will have trouble wrapping its head around, The Walt Disney Company announced plans today to acquire Marvel Entertainment, Inc. in a stock and cash transaction worth an estimated $4 billion.

As to what actually drove the Mouse to pursue Marvel & its library of over 5,000 characters … As Disney CEO Bob Iger explained in an investor’s conference call earlier this morning, this wasn’t a deal that either company really had to make. But from a creativity, technology and global reach point of view, Marvel & its stable of superheroes had a gain by joining forces with the Magic Kingdom.

Mind you, a lot of folks are now trying to draw parallels between The Walt Disney Company’s acquisition of Pixar Animation Studios back in 2006 and today’s deal with Marvel Entertainment, Inc. Though – to be honest – a more apt comparison would probably be Mickey purchasing the Muppets & the 'Bear in the Big Blue House' characters back in February of 2004.

You see, back when Disney hammered out that deal with The Jim Henson Company, they had to agree to honor all of Henson’s pre-existing licensing deals, film production & TV distribution agreements. Waiting – in a lot of cases – for years ‘til those rights ultimately reverted back to The Walt Disney Company’s control.

Only in the past year has the Mouse really had been in a position to start taking full advantage of Fozzie Bear & friends. Which is why you’ve only recently begun to see the Muppets enjoy a more elevated status within Disney’s world. With those characters now starring in the Disneyland Resort’s upcoming promotional campaign, and a new Halloween TV special as well as a Muppet theatrical release being in the works for 2010.

Such is the case with Marvel Entertainment, Inc. as well. Given that Marvel Studios already has deals in place with Sony (for Spider-Man), Paramount (for Iron Man), Fox (for the X-Men) and Universal (for The Incredible Hulk), it’s going to be the better part of a decade (if not longer) before The Walt Disney Company finally reclaims the film rights for most of these franchises.

Likewise when you factor the theme parks rights for many of these properties have already been farmed out (EX: The deal that Universal Studios has in place for use of these characters in the Marvel Super Hero Island section of its Islands of Adventure theme park. Not to mention that 'Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man' attraction that’s been wowing guests for years at IOA as well as at Universal Studios Japan) … Disney really has to be in this for the long haul in order to get maximum value out of this $4 billion acquisition.

But that’s exactly what The Walt Disney Company seems to be willing to do here. Take the long view. They’ve already seen the positive impact that running 20 hours of programming featuring the Marvel characters has had on the ratings over at Disney XD. And over the next 10 years or so, they hope to leverage Marvel Entertainment, Inc. stable of superheroes in ways that will make the Mouse far more competitive in the fields of video gaming, MMORPGs as well as with emerging technologies.

Getting back to the Pixar acquisition now … One important thing that Disney took away from its $7 billion deal to acquire Pixar is how important is not to meddle. To let an already-successful company keep its pre-existing corporate ure. And that’s just what the Mouse allegedly intends on doing with the Marvel Entertainment, Inc. acquisition deal. They’re just going to let Marvel be Marvel. More importantly, stay Marvel.

But – that said – Disney officials are planning on still using their Company’s global reach as well as their pre-existing relations with retail giants to super-charge Marvel’s earnings potential. I mean, this is Mickey that we're talking about here.

Speaking of potential … As part of today’s investors teleconference, Iger did mention that John Lasseter – prior to Disney formalizing this acquisition deal – sat down with the creative team at Marvel. And as John brought up the idea of Pixar making movies that featured the Marvel characters and the folks at Marvel brought up the idea of producing comic books that featured the Pixar characters, it was up to the Disney attorney in the room to put the brakes on. In essence say 'Slow down. We haven’t actually made this deal yet.'

Well, as of this morning, there is a deal in place for The Walt Disney Company to acquire Marvel Entertainment, Inc. And provided that Marvel shareholders do approve this deal (which would involve them receiving $30 in cash plus approximately 0.745 Disney shares for every Marvel share that they own), things could all be wrapped up before the holidays. Which makes for one [heck] of a present for all us pop ure fans out there.

I mean, imagine that: Donald Duck and Howard the Duck will soon be part of the same corporate family. Who’d have thunk it?"

Saturday, August 29, 2009

THE GREEN HORNET flies away to December 2010!


"Seth Rogen's movie based on the pulp and television hero The Green Hornet has been moved from its original date of July 7, 2010 to its new date of December 17, 2010 according to Box Office Mojo. No reason for the move was given but one can presumes it's to give the movie more time for post-production--principal photography hasn't begun yet--and to get it away from Robert Rodriguez's Predators relaunch. (Currently, Sony had set that date for the 3D Smurfs movie, which one assumes will be moved itself, since currently, it's up against Warner Bros' animated Yogi Bear movie.) "


Where is this movie going? Does Seth Rogen and Michel Gondry care anymore?

UPDATE: Apparently they do!

" has gotten in touch with Seth Rogen for a reaction/explanation of the delay, and Rogen told them that he and his creative partners Evan Goldberg and director Michel Gondry are 'relieved and psyched about the change' because it does give them more time to finish and promote the movie, including an appearance at next year's Comic-Con."

Friday, August 28, 2009

INCEPTION trailer gets inside the mind


"Warner Bros. Pictures has [released] the teaser trailer for The Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan's new film, Inception, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Marion Cotillard, Cillian Murphy, Ellen Page, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ken Watanabe, Tom Hardy and Michael Caine.

Opening in theaters on July 16, 2010, the film is described as a contemporary sci-fi actioner set within the architecture of the mind. Nolan also wrote the original screenplay."

Your Mind Is The Scene of the Crime.

Stare at a trailer for THE MEN WHO STARE AT GOATS


"...The trailer for director Grant Heslov's new comedy, The Men Who Stare at Goats, starring George Clooney, Ewan McGregor, Kevin Spacey and Jeff Bridges [has been released].

Based on true events described in Jon Ronson's 2004 book of the same title, the November 6 release involves a down-on-his-luck reporter (McGregor) who gets more than he bargains for when he meets a special forces agent (Clooney) who reveals the existence of a secret, psychic military unit whose goal is to use paranormal powers to end war as we know it."

I admit, I usually don't like war movies (except for ones made by big directors like Steven Spielberg, Michael Bay and Ben Stiller) but this one looks too funny to pass up.

UPDATE: Further information from Slashfilm:

"In this quirky dark comedy inspired by a real life story you will hardly believe is actually true, astonishing revelations about a top-secret wing of the U.S. military come to light when a reporter encounters an enigmatic Special Forces operator on a mind-boggling mission. Reporter Bob Wilton (Ewan McGregor) is in search of his next big story when he encounters Lyn Cassady (Academy Award®winner George Clooney), a shadowy figure who claims to be part of an experimental U.S. military unit. According to Cassady, the New Earth Army is changing the way wars are fought. A legion of 'Warrior Monks' with unparalleled psychic powers can read the enemy’s thoughts, pass through solid walls, and even kill a goat simply by staring at it. Now, the program’s founder, Bill Django (Oscar® nominee Jeff Bridges), has gone missing and Cassady’s mission is to find him. Intrigued by his new acquaintance’s far-fetched stories, Bob impulsively decides to accompany him on the search. When the pair tracks Django to a clandestine training camp run by renegade psychic Larry Hooper (two-time Oscar® winner Kevin Spacey), the reporter is trapped in the middle of a grudge match between the forces of Django’s New Earth Army and Hooper’s personal militia of super soldiers. In order to survive this wild adventure, Bob will have to outwit an enemy he never thought possible. The Men Who Stare at Goats was inspired by Jon Ronson’s non-fiction bestseller of the same name, an eye-opening and often hilarious exploration of the government’s attempts to harness paranormal abilities to combat its enemies."



Monday, August 24, 2009

Morton, West and Walker sign on to MARS


"Samantha Morton, Dominic West and Polly Walker have joined Disney's John Carter of Mars, director Andrew Stanton's adaptation of the Edgar Rice Burroughs book series.

The trio joins Taylor Kitsch, Lynn Collins and Willem Dafoe in the film, which centers on a Civil War veteran (Kitsch) who finds himself mysteriously transported to Mars, where he discovers a lush, wildly diverse planet whose main inhabitants are 12-foot tall green barbarians. Finding himself a prisoner of these creatures, he escapes, only to encounter Dejah Thoris (Collins), Princess of Helium, who is in desperate need of a savior and Tars Tarkas (Dafoe), a brutal and mirthless green Martian warrior, who possesses the unusual characteristic to feel love and empathy..

Morton plays Sola, the daughter of Dafoe's Tars Tarkas, who must hide her softer side from her warmongering race.

West plays Sab Than, prince of the Zodangans who believes he is entitled to rule Mars.

Walker plays Sarkoja, a merciless, tyrannical Thark."

Okay, let me see if I can see where these unknowns (at least to me come from) - Morton was in Steven Spielberg's Minority Report as Agatha, West was in Zach Snyder's 300 as Theron and in George Lucas' Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace as a palace guard (well, you gotta start somewhere) and Polly Walker was in Patriot Games.



" recently got a chance to talk to producer Mark Johnson about the third installment in the Narnia franchise, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, which Fox Walden will release in theaters on December 10, 2010 release.

'Andrew Adamson, who wrote and directed the first two, is a producer on it with me and Michael Apted is directing,' said Johnson. 'It's a whole new franchise, I think it's really benefiting from it. It's a slightly different look. This one is different from the others, it's in that [Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, old Harryhausen films] league and they go from island to island having adventures. I'm very excited about it.'

He added that 'Adamson said something that was so smart early on. I had just re-read the book and he said, I don't want to make a film based on The Lion, The and The Wardrobe, I want to make a movie based on my recollection of it. He took a 9-year-old boy's imagination. He saw things that are not even in the book. Lewis left, sometimes major battles, on a single page, so Adamson just re-imagined it.'

In the third film, Edmund and Lucy Pevensie, along with their pesky cousin Eustace Scrubb, find themselves swallowed into a painting and on to a fantastic Narnian ship headed for the very edges of the world.

Joining forces once again with their royal friend Prince Caspian and the warrior mouse Reepicheep, they are whisked away on a mysterious mission to the Lone Islands, and beyond. On this bewitching voyage that will test their hearts and spirits, the trio will face magical Dufflepuds, sinister slave traders, roaring dragons and enchanted merfolk. Only an entirely uncharted journey to Aslan's Country – a voyage of destiny and transformation for each of those aboard the Dawn Treader – can save Narnia, and all the astonishing creatures in it, from an unfathomable fate."

I still say that Disney made a stupid decision to sell the rights to Fox. Only one company in the world is synonymous with magic and that's Disney. Only Disney.

Saturday, August 22, 2009



"The new international trailer for Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, starring Heath Ledger and Christopher Plummer, and featuring Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell and Jude Law, is now online.

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus is a fantastical morality tale, set in the present day. It tells the story of Dr. Parnassus and his extraordinary 'Imaginarium', a traveling show where members of the audience get an irresistible opportunity to choose between light and joy or darkness and gloom. Blessed with the extraordinary gift of guiding the imaginations of others, Dr. Parnassus is cursed with a dark secret. Long ago he made a bet with the devil, Mr. Nick, in which he won immortality. Many centuries later, on meeting his one true love, Dr. Parnassus made another deal with the devil, trading his immortality for youth, on condition that when his first-born reached its 16th birthday he or she would become the property of Mr. Nick.

Valentina is now rapidly approaching this 'coming of age' milestone and Dr. Parnassus is desperate to protect her from her impending fate. Mr. Nick arrives to collect but, always keen to make a bet, renegotiates the wager. Now the winner of Valentina will be determined by whoever seduces the first five souls. Enlisting a series of wild, comical and compelling characters in his journey, Dr. Parnassus promises his daughter's hand in marriage to the man that helps him win. In this captivating, explosive and wonderfully imaginative race against time, Dr. Parnassus must fight to save his daughter in a never-ending landscape of surreal obstacles - and undo the mistakes of his past once and for all."

The film is scheduled to open in the US on Christmas Day. In my opinion, audiences will be glad to see Heath one last time. It took guts to keep the lines referring to death. And here I thought that Heath, Johnny, Colin and Jude would look differently. Oh, well.

It's interesting to me that now Jude Law has two movies coming out the same day - Imaginarium and Sherlock Holmes.

More info on THIS IS IT!


"Sony Pictures on Thursday released new information about its plans for Michael Jackson's This Is It!, the movie being pieced together from a reported 100 hours of rehearsal footage that was shot prior to the singer's death in June. The studio, which reportedly paid $60 million for the raw footage, pushed the opening up two days to October 28, announced that it would remain in theaters just two weeks, and set September 27 as the date it would make tickets available. The studio also said that it had closed a deal with Kenny Ortega to oversee the movie. Ortega, who directed the High School Musical movies, had been the choreographer of Jackson's concerts, which had been set to take place at London's O2 arena. In a statement, Ortega said that as he had begun assembling the footage, 'we realized we captured something extraordinary, unique, and very special. ... It is raw, emotional, moving, and powerful footage that captures his interactions with the This Is It collaborators that he had personally assembled for this once-in-a-lifetime project.' Despite earlier reports to the contrary, the film will not contain any 3D elements, the studio said."

AWW!! SHOOT!! And I was hoping for a 3D Thriller. Oh, well. At least tickets will be cheaper.

Friday, August 21, 2009

SHERLOCK HOLMES needs your help!


"Warner Bros. Pictures has kicked-off a viral campaign for the Guy Ritchie-directed Sherlock Holmes, starring Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Rachel McAdams, Mark Strong, Eddie Marsan and Kelly Reilly.

You can go here ( to check out the viral site. To access the site, type in 'IRENE' (for Rachel McAdams' character Irene Adler) in the boxes and you'll get taken to a video of a hooded man, followed by page where you can sign up your e-mail for further updates.

The mystery action adventure opens in theaters on Christmas Day."

Will this campaign be as sucessful as The Dark Knight's "Why So Serious?"? Not really, it's too late in the game. But maybe it'll be fun!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

AVATAR gets a big, blue trailer


"20th Century Fox has released the first trailer for James Cameron's Avatar, opening in 3D theaters and IMAX 3D on December 18. The sci-fi action-adventure stars Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, Michelle Rodriguez, Giovanni Ribisi, Joel David Moore, CCH Pounder, Peter Mensah, Laz Alonso, Wes Studi, Stephen Lang and Matt Gerald.

Avatar is the story of an ex-Marine who finds himself thrust into hostilities on an alien planet filled with exotic life forms. As an Avatar, a human mind in an alien body, he finds himself torn between two worlds, in a desperate fight for his own survival and that of the indigenous people."

"'The story of Avatar takes place on an alien moon called Pandora, which is home to the Na’vi race, and where humans are encroaching. Humans cannot breath the air, but they have created special Na’vi/human hybrids which can be controlled as ‘avatars’ by humans. Jake Sully, an injured marine played by Sam Worthington (Terminator Salvation), takes on an ‘avatar’ to act as a scout and he goes deep into Pandora and eventually joins up with Neytiri, a Na’vi female warrior played by Zoe Saldana (via motion capture technology and rendered in CGI).

Cameron conceived of the film back in the 90s, but couldn’t realize his vision until the CGI technology caught up to what he had in mind. Fox promises that Avatar is 'a fully immersive cinematic experience of a new kind, where the revolutionary technology invented to make the film, disappears into the emotion of the characters and the sweep of the story.'"




"Avatar, a live action film with a new generation of special effects, takes us to a spectacular world beyond imagination, where a reluctant hero embarks on a journey of redemption and discovery as he leads an epic battle to save a civilization. James Cameron, the Oscar-winning director of Titanic, first conceived the film years ago, when the means to realize his vision did not yet exist. Now, after four years of actual production work, Avatar delivers a fully immersive cinematic experience of a new kind, where the revolutionary technology invented to make the film disappears into the emotion of the characters and the sweep of the story.

The story's hero is Jake Sully, a former Marine confined to a wheelchair. Bitter and disillusioned, he's still a warrior at heart. All Jake ever wanted was something worth fighting for, and he finds it in the place he least expected: on a distant world. Jake has been recruited to join an expedition to the moon Pandora, which corporate interests are strip-mining for a mineral worth $20 million per kilogram on Earth. To facilitate their work, the humans use a link system that projects a person's consciousness into a hybrid of humans and Pandora's indigenous humanoids, the Na'vi. This human-Na'vi hybrid – a fully living, breathing body that resembles the Na'vi but possesses the individual human's thoughts, feelings and personality – is known as an 'avatar.'

In his new avatar form, Jake can once again walk. His mission is to interact with and infiltrate the Na'vi with the hope of enlisting their help – or at least their acquiescence – in mining the ore. A beautiful Na'vi female, Neytiri, saves Jake's life, albeit reluctantly, because even in his avatar body, Jake represents to her the human encroachment on the Na'vi's unspoiled world.

As Jake's relationship with Neytiri deepens, along with his respect for the Na'vi, he faces the ultimate test as he leads an epic conflict that will decide nothing less than the fate of an entire world."


NEW TV SPOT (courtesy of Nickelodeon)

THE WOLFMAN howls for a trailer


"Universal Pictures has revealed the new trailer for director Joe Johnston's The Wolfman, opening in theaters on February 12.

In the film, Benicio Del Toro stars as Lawrence Talbot, a haunted nobleman lured back to his family estate after his brother vanishes. Reunited with his estranged father (Anthony Hopkins), Talbot sets out to find his brother... and discovers a horrifying destiny for himself.

Lawrence Talbot's childhood ended the night his mother died. After he left the sleepy Victorian hamlet of Blackmoor, he spent decades recovering and trying to forget. But when his brother's fiancée, Gwen Conliffe (Emily Blunt), tracks him down to help find her missing love, Talbot returns home to join the search. He learns that something with brute strength and insatiable bloodlust has been killing the villagers, and that a suspicious Scotland Yard inspector named Aberline (Hugo Weaving) has come to investigate.

As he pieces together the gory puzzle, he hears of an ancient curse that turns the afflicted into werewolves when the moon is full. Now, if he has any chance at ending the slaughter and protecting the woman he has grown to love, Talbot must destroy the vicious creature in the woods surrounding Blackmoor. But as he hunts for the nightmarish beast, a simple man with a tortured past will uncover a primal side to himself... one he never imagined existed."



"Paramount Home Entertainment has announced that Michael Bay's Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is hitting Blu-ray and DVD on October 20. The full specs... can be found below:

'With more action and more thrills, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen captivated audiences to earn over $820 million at the box office and become the #1 movie of the year in North America and throughout the world. The latest spectacular adventure in the wildly popular Transformers franchise will make its highly-anticipated DVD... debut on October 20, 2009 in immersive, two-disc Special Editions, as well as on a single disc DVD, from DreamWorks Pictures and Paramount Pictures in association with Hasbro; distributed by Paramount Home Entertainment. The eagerly-awaited home entertainment premiere will be accompanied by one of the division's biggest marketing campaigns ever, generating awareness and excitement of galactic proportions.

From director Michael Bay and executive producer Steven Spielberg, in association with Hasbro, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen delivers non-stop action and fun in an all-new adventure that the whole family can enjoy. Featuring out-of-this-world heroes in the form of the mighty Autobots and a malevolent and powerful villain known as The Fallen, the film boasts some of the most sensational--and complex--visual effects in film history set against the backdrop of spectacular locations around the world. In addition to audience favorites Optimus Prime and Bumblebee, the film's human stars have returned to help save the world including Shia LaBeouf (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull), Megan Fox (How to Lose Friends & Alienate People), Josh Duhamel ('Las Vegas'), Tyrese Gibson (Four Brothers) and John Turturro (The Good Shepherd).

The Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen two-disc... DVD feature over three hours of in-depth, immersive special features that let viewers further explore the world of the legendary Robots in Disguise. Among the engrossing content is a multi-chapter documentary, including interviews with the cast and crew, that chronicles the entire making of the film from development and design to filming in locations around the globe, working with the U.S. military, creating the groundbreaking visual effects and putting it all together to produce the biggest film of the year. The discs also include an all-access featurette following renowned director Michael Bay through an entire day, a comprehensive exploration of the 'confidential files' on a dozen of the Transformers characters featured in the film, multi-angle breakdowns of some of the most sensational action sequences and much, much more.

Two-Disc Special Edition DVD:

The Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen two-disc Special Edition DVD is presented in widescreen enhanced for 16:9 televisions with Dolby Digital English 5.1 Surround, French 5.1 Surround and Spanish 5.1 Surround with English, French and Spanish subtitles.... The disc breakdown is as follows:

Disc 1:

* Commentary by Michael Bay, Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman

Disc 2:

* The Human Factor: Exacting Revenge of the Fallen--This multi-chapter documentary chronicles the entire creation of the film and includes interviews with the cast and crew:
o Seeds of Vengeance - Development and Design - After the overwhelming success of 2007's Transformers, how do the filmmakers top themselves for the sequel?
o Domestic Destruction - Production: United States - Michael Bay believes in going big: Big action and big explosions. Cast and crew are pushed to the limit as they traverse the U.S. from New Mexico to Pennsylvania.
o Joint Operations - Production: Military - No other filmmaker in the world enjoys the kind of military access and cooperation Michael Bay has. Here we see just how efficient our armed forces are and the awe and respect shown by the cast.
o Wonders of the World - Production: Middle East - You can't really reproduce Egypt anywhere but Egypt so off we go to Giza and Luxor.
o Start Making Sense - Editing - In order to turn over the massive amount of film as quickly as possible to VFX, four editors work tirelessly in a unique tag-team approach to shape the film.
o Under the - Visual Effects - Revenge of the Fallen features the most complicated VFX in film history. So complicated in fact that the filmmakers were unsure they would make the line. The Devastator VFX alone required 83% of ILM's total render farm capacity.
o Running the Gauntlet - Post-Production and Release - Working seven days a week, Michael Bay and company usher the film through sound design, Digital Intermediate color-timing and a globe-trotting whirlwind of premieres.
* A Day with Bay: Tokyo--An intimate and fun all-access journey with Michael Bay as he travels to Tokyo, Japan for the world premiere of the biggest film of the year.
* 25 Years of Transformers--Access an all-new featurette celebrating a monumental milestone for one of Hasbro's most successful and popular franchises.
* NEST: Transformer Data-Hub--Explore conceptual artwork created by the production for 12 of the most popular Autobots and Decepticons from the film.
* Deconstructing Visual Bayhem with Commentary by Pre-Vis Supervisor Steve Yamamoto-- A series of multi-angle pre-visualization sequences allowing viewers to learn how some of the film's most spectacular scenes were created with an introduction by Michael Bay.
* Extended Scenes
* Music Video: Linkin Park's 'New Divide'"


Zemeckis boards YELLOW SUBMARINE


"Robert Zemeckis is negotiations to direct a remake of Yellow Submarine for Disney.

Yellow Submarine was a 1968 animated feature based on music by the Beatles. It was produced by United Artists and King Features Syndicate.

Like all Zemeckis productions [beginning with The Polar Express up to his latest film A Christmas Carol], the film would be done in performance capture and would also be a digital 3D endeavor.

The original is about a soldier called Old Fred who meets up with the Beatles and travels in a yellow submersible to Pepperland. Among the group's encounters are the Blue Meanies, music-hating creatures."

A lot of my fellow movie buffs, myself included are asking "How?" and "Why?". I know one half of the question, how - performance capture can make anybody in the world look like anybody else. They can make a five-year-old look like he's 80 and vice-versa.

Does Disney care (I'm sure they know) that the original was extraordinarily weird? I'm actually interested in playing The Beatles: Rock Band.

Also, Robert Zemeckis' first theatrical film was titled I Wanna Hold Your Hand after a Beatles song. Coincidence? Or am I watching Back to the Future way too much? Don't answer that.

For more information on the movie, visit:

For more information on The Beatles: Rock Band, visit:

Captain Marvel says, "SHAZAM! Again!"


"Warner Bros. Pictures has hired actor-turned-writer Bill Birch and Geoff Johns to write Shazam!, the adaptation of the DC Comics series featuring Captain Marvel.

Get Smart helmer Peter Segal remains on board to direct and he'll also produce with his Callahan Filmworks partner Michael Ewing. Johns will also consult on the project.

Shazam! centers on teenaged Billy Batson, who transforms into the superhero when he says the word 'Shazam!' The studio is now looking to go back to the original DC Comics source material for inspiration.

Previous drafts have been written by John August, William Goldman, Bryan Goluboff and the team of Joel Cohen and Alec Sokolow."

I could see how this would work in sort of a teen superhero movie. Let's hope they give Captain Marvel the SHAZAM! he needs!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

HANCOCK getting a sequel?


"SCI FI Wire talked to Hancock director Peter Berg about the possible sequel that would see the return of Will Smith and Charlize Theron. Here's an excerpt, which does contain spoilers:

'At the end of last year's Hancock, it was revealed that Will Smith's superpowered character was actually an immortal god who became vulnerable only when in the presence of his goddess companion (Charlize Theron). Berg confirmed that a sequel would elaborate on the film's mythology.

'There might be another god out there,' Berg said in an exclusive interview last month in Pasadena, Calif. 'Might be another one.'

If two gods render each other mortal, imagine what kind of wrench a third would throw into the mix."

The only flaw in Hancock was it stopped being funny. It needs more humor, people!!

Gene Simmons is THE WOLFMAN?


"Gene Simmons is fulfilling a childhood dream, by providing the voice for the Wolfman in Sir Anthony Hopkins and Benicio Del Toro's new movie.

Simmons was asked by The Wolfman director Joe Johnston to record the creature's 'howling voice' for the movie, scheduled for release next year.

The invitation was a dream come true for the Kiss rocker and film fanatic.

Simmons explains, 'The original Wolfman starred Lon Chaney Jr., son of the legendary Lon Chaney Sr. Chaney Sr. was called Man Of 1,000 Faces, and for me was a pivotal figure in my childhood. So much so, that I wrote a song called Man of 1,000 Faces on my 1978 solo album, and my production company was also called Man of 1,000 Faces… in homage to Chaney.'

The rocker's trademark tones are currently in demand in Tinseltown - he's already landed another voice-over job. The bassist adds, 'I was asked to do the voice of the Dragon Spirit in M. Night Shyamalan’s forthcoming Airbender movie. This may or may not come to fruition. We’ll see.'"

Talk about coming out of left field!! I mean, I buy it, though it's just weird.

Ryan Reynolds gets BURIED


"Aullidos has your first look at Ryan Reynolds in Buried, director by Rodrigo Cortes and written by Chris Sparling. Reynolds plays a civilian contractor who's kidnapped in Iraq and awakens buried in a coffin in the desert, armed only with a cell phone, a candle and a knife."

BATTLE and FOCKERS get dates!


"Columbia Pictures has set a February 18, 2011 release date for director Jonathan Liebesman's sci-fi action-adventure Battle: Los Angeles.

The film revolves around a Marine staff sergeant (Aaron Eckhart) and his new platoon's battle against an alien invasion on the streets of Los Angeles. Michelle Rodriguez will play Crpl. Adriana Santos, a member of a radio battalion. Michael Pena plays the father of a boy the Marines find along the way, and Bridget Moynahan plays a veterinarian.

Chris Bertolini and Scott Silver wrote the script."

and who can forget the long-awaited third installment of the Meet the Parents series?

"Universal Pictures.... has set a July 30, 2010 release date for the third installment of the Meet the Parents franchise, Little Fockers. Directed by Paul Weitz, the comedy stars Ben Stiller, Robert De Niro, Owen Wilson, Teri Polo and Blythe Danner.

Other films scheduled for that date are Beastly, Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore and Morning Glory. We'll have to see if they want to compete with the Fockers."

Monday, August 17, 2009

What tangled webs these writers weave...


"Sony Pictures has engaged screenwriter James Vanderbilt to write Spider-Man 5 and Spider-Man 6.

Production on Spider-Man 4 will begin early next year for a May 6, 2011 release. Vanderbilt wrote the first draft of the script for the fourth installment. David Lindsay-Abaire was brought on board to do a rewrite, and Gary Ross is now rewriting that script.

Director Sam Raimi didn't embrace all of Vanderbilt's ideas, but executives at Columbia Pictures and Marvel Studios have. Vanderbilt has been hired to pen the fifth and sixth movies, which have an interconnected storyline.

It's unclear whether Raimi, Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst will be back for #5 & 6, but if they aren't, Vanderbilt's script would be the blueprint for a franchise reboot."

Well, I'm excited to hear about more Spider-Man movies but I'm not excited that Sam Raimi s Vanderbilt's scripts. Everybody d Spider-Man 3 but me so I'm really looking forward to any more of Spidey's adventures

Will Ferrell gets an OOBERMIND


"DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. announced today that Will Ferrell, Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill will star alongside Tina Fey in its upcoming theatrical release, Oobermind, which is scheduled to hit theaters on November 5, 2010. Will Ferrell assumes the leading role of Oobermind, replacing Robert Downey, Jr., who has left the production due to scheduling conflicts.

When super villain Oobermind (Ferrell) defeats his archrival Metro Man (Pitt), the world should be his oyster. But instead, Oobermind falls into total despair. It turns out that life without a rival is life without a point for him. So, he creates a new superhero rival, Titan (Hill). Unfortunately, the new hero wants to be a super villain, too. Caught in the middle, star reporter Roxanne Ritchi (Fey) asks the tough questions: Who can we turn to? Who has what it takes to stand up to this menace? Who will defend the ? Oobermind! That's who.

'We are thrilled to welcome Will, Brad and Jonah to Oobermind,' said Bill Damaschke, Co-President of Production & President of Live Theatrical for DreamWorks Animation. 'Together, our all-star cast will set the comedic tone for this exciting new twist on the superhero genre.'

Oobermind is being directed by Tom McGrath (Madagascar, Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa) and produced by Lara Breay and Denise Nolan Cascino."

Ah! And here I thought we were going to get Robert Downey Jr. in an animated movie! Oh, well, maybe someday.

Will Ferrell seriously needs to do more animated movies. I know he did Curious George but that's for a specific audience - 5 year olds.

Brad Pitt, I'm really surprised to hear about. He must be wanting to do more comedy in his career - Mr. and Mrs. Smith and Inglorious Basterds (I'm not taking him seriously in that accent!)

Jonah Hill as a supervillain? I dunno. I'll wait and see.

WHITE CHICKS gets a sequel!


"The Wayans Brothers and Sony are developing a sequel to the 2004 comedy White Chicks, which will see Marlon and Shawn Wayans reprise their roles as sibling FBI agents posing as a pair of white ladies.

Keenen Ivory Wayans is on board to direct the sequel, which all three Wayans are writing. The logline for the new entry is being kept under wraps.

The original grossed almost $70 million domestically from a budget of around $37 million."

Okay, seriously? I'm pretty optimistic on this site but I mean, really?! Come on! I mean, yes, I've seen the movie, it does have funny moments but not enough to make a sequel.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Jon Heder says, "BUDDY HOLLY IS ALIVE"


"Jon Heder is set to star in Buddy Holly Is Alive and Well on Ganymede, an adaptation of the Bradley Denton comic sci-fi novel, says Variety.

In the film, Heder will play Oliver Vale, an average geek whose uneventful life changes when Buddy Holly turns up on every TV channel and declares that Vale is the only one who understands why this is happening -- which causes Vale to be pursued by a mob of disguised aliens.

Robert Rugan wrote the script and will direct."

Well, can't blame them for being original. Just the thing Hollywood needs - originality. Plus, I've missed Jon Heder since Napoleon Dynamite.

WHEN IN ROME, watch the trailer!


"Yahoo! Movies has debuted the trailer for director Mark Steven Johnson's new comedy, When in Rome, starring Kristen Bell, Josh Duhamel, Will Arnett, Alexis Dziena, Jon Heder, Dax Shepard, Kate Micucci, Bobby Moynihan, Danny DeVito and Anjelica Huston.

In the film, opening January 29, an ambitious young New Yorker (Bell), disillusioned with romance, takes a whirlwind trip to Rome where she defiantly plucks magic coins from a 'foolish' fountain of love, inexplicably igniting the passion of an odd group of suitors: a sausage magnate (DeVito), a street magician (Heder), an adoring painter (Will Arnett) and a self-admiring model (Shepard). But when a charming reporter (Duhamel) pursues her with equal zest, how will she know if his love is the real thing?"

Superman is back in control with his origins


"A judge on Wednesday ruled that the family of Superman's co-creator, Jerry Siegel, has 'successfully recaptured' rights to additional works, including the first two weeks of the daily Superman newspaper comic-strips, as well as portions of early Action Comics and Superman comic-books. The trade explains:

The ruling is based on the court's finding that these were not 'works-made-for-hire' under the Copyright Act.

This means the Siegels -- repped by Marc Toberoff of Toberoff & Associates -- now control depictions of Superman's origins from the planet Krypton, his parents Jor-El and Lara, Superman as the infant Kal-El, the launching of the infant Superman into space by his parents as Krypton explodes and his landing on Earth in a fiery crash.

The article again mentioned that the studio and DC will have to start production by 2011 if they want to make a new Superman or Justice League movie."

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

THIS IS IT goes theatrical!


"Beginning October 30th, the world will have a front-row seat for Michael Jackson's final concert, as Sony Pictures Entertainment and Sony Music Entertainment release Michael Jackson's This Is It.

This Is It is being produced with the full support of The Estate of Michael Jackson and will be drawn from hundreds of hours of rehearsal and behind-the-scenes footage, captured in high definition with state-of-the-art digital sound as the late singer was preparing for his concert series in London. The film, which will also offer select sequences in 3-D, will provide a unique career retrospective and feature interviews with some of Jackson's closest friends and creative collaborators.

The announcement was made by Michael Lynton, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Sony Pictures Entertainment, Amy Pascal, Co-Chairman of the studio, Rolf Schmidt-Holtz, Chief Executive Officer of Sony Music Entertainment, and Rob Stringer, Chairman of Columbia/Epic Label Group, a subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment. The companies serve as the principal entertainment divisions of Sony Corporation.

Joining Sony in the announcement was The Estate of Michael Jackson, administered by his longtime attorney John Branca and veteran music executive John McClain, a Jackson family friend for more than 40 years. Proceeds the Estate earns from the film's release will benefit the Michael Jackson Family Trust, the entity that Mr. Jackson specified in his will is to receive all of his assets.

The rights to the exclusive footage were acquired from AEG Live and The Estate of Michael Jackson. Sony Pictures and Sony Music will co-produce with AEG Live and the Estate, and Sony Pictures will distribute the film worldwide. Randy Phillips and Paul Gongaware of AEG Live will serve as producers of the film.

The majority of the film's footage was shot in June, 2009 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California and The Forum in Inglewood, California, as Jackson prepared for 'This Is It,' the series of fifty concerts Jackson planned to present at the O2 Arena in London.

This Is It will offer Jackson fans and music lovers worldwide a rare, behind-the-scenes look at the performer, his career, and the stage spectacular that would have been. The film will provide moviegoers with an unforgettable front row experience compiled from extensive footage that shows Jackson's meticulous preparation for his 2009 London shows.

Said Branca, 'Our goal is to work with partners who treat Michael's legacy with dignity and respect, while allowing us to substantially build the value of his estate for the benefit of Mrs. Katherine Jackson, Michael's three children and the charitable causes that meant so much to him during his life. We are confident we found the right partners for this project in Sony Pictures Entertainment and Sony Music Entertainment. Sony and Michael enjoyed a long and mutually beneficial history together, and it's only fitting that the relationship continues.'

Said McClain, 'This film is not only a tribute to an artist who created excitement every moment he was on stage, but also is a fitting gift to the millions of fans worldwide who loved him and who he devoted his professional life to entertaining. John and I are thrilled to be working with Sony to build on Michael's musical legacy in a way that will generate significant proceeds for his family and for children in need.'

'People who have seen this footage are astounded by the amazing quality of Michael Jackson's performance,' said Lynton. 'This historic recording of the last time he sang and danced on stage shows the legendary artist in an incredibly powerful way, with crystal clear images and sound. We understand the importance of producing a film that pays tribute to Michael as an artist, and are honored to work with The Estate of Michael Jackson to give audiences the gift of his final performances. I know this film will serve as further proof that Michael Jackson is one of the greatest entertainers who ever graced a stage.'

'Michael lives on through his songs, his creative genius, his body of work and his passion for his art,' said Rob Stringer. 'He was a perfectionist on stage and through this unique film, audiences will be able to see, many for the first time, how much Michael poured into making his performances as special as they were perfect.'

Said Kenny Ortega, director of and Jackson's creative partner on the This Is It concert, 'The world will see what our team was so fortunate to experience, which was the full commitment, passion and creativity that Michael put into this project. He was the architect of This Is It, and we were his builders. The footage that was captured from the early stages of the production to our technical rehearsals at the STAPLES Center in L.A. will show Michael as he truly was, creatively involved with every aspect of the production, from the staging and choreography, to the music, lighting, production design and conception of the original short films and video backdrops. It will also show Michael as one of the greatest entertainers in the world and one of the industry's most creative minds. This Is It was Michael's last theatrical work and although it was still a work in progress, I think the footage will show that the process was something that Michael deeply enjoyed and that it was clear that he was on his way to another theatrical triumph.'

Michael Jackson, one of the most widely beloved entertainers and profoundly influential artists of all-time, leaves an indelible imprint on popular music and culture.

Five of Jackson's solo albums - 'Off the Wall,' 'Thriller,' 'Bad,' 'Dangerous' and 'HIStory,' all with Epic Records, a Sony Music label - are among the top-sellers of all time and 'Thriller' holds the distinction as the largest selling album worldwide in the history of the recording industry with more than 70 million units sold. Additionally, singles released from the 'Thriller' album sold more than 100 million copies worldwide, another all time record.

During his extraordinary career, he sold an estimated 750 million records worldwide, released 13 No.1 singles and became one of a handful of artists to be inducted twice into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Guinness Book of World Records recognized Jackson as the Most Successful Entertainer of All Time and 'Thriller' as the Biggest Selling Album of All Time. Jackson won 13 Grammy Awards and received the American Music Award's Artist of the Century Award.

Michael Jackson started in the music business at the age of 11 with his brothers as a member of the Jackson 5. In the early 1980s, he defined the art form of music video with such ground-breaking videos as 'Billie Jean,' 'Beat It' and the epic 'Thriller.' Jackson's sound, style and dance moves inspired subsequent generations of pop, soul, R&B and hip-hop artists."

Saturday, August 8, 2009

From Jackson to Spielberg


"IESB has posted an interesting scoop saying that Steven Spielberg is in talks to produce Halo: The Fall of Reach, screenwriter Stuart Beattie's adaptation of the Eric Nylund novel that is based on the series of video games. Here's an excerpt from their article:

'IESB has learned exclusively (believe me this is solid and I've confirmed it three times over with studio executives and our close ties to CAA) that one of the biggest producers in Hollywood history is currently in active negotiations to develop the feature film adaptation and no it's not Jerry Bruckheimer or Peter Jackson. It's the man behind Jaws, E.T., Indiana Jones and Transformers, Mr. Steven Spielberg.

Spielberg is blown away by writer Stuart Beattie's take on the game in his script entitled Halo: The Fall of Reach. This coupled with the fact that his Dreamworks umbrella is looking for a big tent pole to help launch their newly independant studio with distribution over at Walt Disney Pictures after losing Transformers to Paramount in the separation, it's the perfect combination.'

20th Century Fox and Universal's previous attempt at bringing the game to the big screen fell apart. District 9 producer Peter Jackson and director Neill Blomkamp were attached to that version."

This sounds awesome!! Can't wait to see what Spielberg will bring to the project!! Spielberg is a self-professed fan of video games.

For more info on the book, visit

Thursday, August 6, 2009

John Hughes has passed...


"Writer/director/producer John Hughes died suddenly today of a heart attack while taking a morning walk during a trip to Manhattan to visit family. He was 59.

Hughes directed the films Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Weird Science, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Planes, Trains & Automobiles, She's Having a Baby, Uncle Buck and Curly Sue.

Born on February 18th, 1950 in Michigan, Hughes in the last decade stepped back from the legacy he created to enjoy time with his family, maintain a functioning farm in northern Illinois and support independent arts.

Hughes is survived by his wife of 39 years, Nancy, two sons, John and James, and four grandchildren."

This truly saddens me. John Hughes movies are always on my mind whenever I'm writing a screenplay. They are true legends in '80s comedy. This man will truly be missed.

In my opinion, John Hughes had the perfect audience.

As a kid you could go see Home Alone (which he wrote).
As a teen you could go see Ferris Bueller's Day Off (which he wrote and directed).
As an adult you could go see Planes, Trains & Automobiles (which he wrote and directed).

RIP John Hughes. We won't won't won't forget about you!

PONYO washes up with trailers!


"Walt Disney Pictures has debuted the new trailer for Hayao Miyazaki's Ponyo, opening in theaters on August 14.

The film's story was inspired by Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tale 'The Little Mermaid'. Already a box-office success in Japan, the story of a young and overeager goldfish named Ponyo (voiced by Noah Cyrus) and her quest to become human features the voices of Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon, Tina Fey, Cloris Leachman, Liam Neeson, Lily Tomlin, Betty White and Frankie Jonas as Sosuke, a young boy who befriends Ponyo."

Okay, I'll admit these trailers has been out for a while and the release is a week away but just in ya didn't catch it - I got 'em both for you:



THE LOVELY BONES gets a lovely trailer


"DreamWorks Pictures has now revealed the full trailer for Peter Jackson's The Lovely Bones, opening in theaters on December 11.

Based on the critically acclaimed best-selling novel by Alice Sebold, the film centers on a young girl who has been murdered and watches over her family - and her killer - from heaven. She must weigh her desire for vengeance against her desire for her family to heal. Oscar® nominee Mark Wahlberg and Oscar® winners Rachel Weisz and Susan Surandon star along with Stanley Tucci, Michael Imperioli and Oscar® nominee Saoirse Ronan.

Unusual follow-up from The Lord of the Rings and King Kong but nevertheless it shows Peter Jackson's enormous versitilty. It walks a great fine line from fantasy to murder-mystery/thriller. I'm already looking forward to this movie. Are you?

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

GUNSMOKE wrangles up a movie!


"CBS Films is developing a feature reboot of 'Gunsmoke' and has hired National Treasure: Book of Secrets writer Gregory Poirier to pen the screenplay.

Craig Baumgarten (Shattered Glass, Never Back Down) will produce the new take.

The action-adventure will re-imagine Marshal Matt Dillon, the hero of the classic Western, for modern audiences. The story will be set in the same American West as the original but will feature a contemporary look and modern action twists.

Poirier is said to be close to completing a first draft of the script."

Well, my parents and grandparents will be happy to hear this!

Here's the original Gunsmoke opening:

Tuesday, August 4, 2009



"20th Century Fox has attached Hugh Jackman to play American showman P.T. Barnum in The Greatest Showman on Earth, an original contemporary musical to be written by Jenny Bicks.

The film will be produced by Laurence Mark (Dreamgirls), Jackman and his Seed partner John Palermo.

Jackman will play the showman with a penchant for hoaxing a gullible public as he creates the three-ring circus that made him famous. The musical also focuses on his infatuation with singer Jenny Lind -- the so-called Swedish Nightingale.

The film will have a contemporary musical score, and the studio is in talks with British singer-songwriter Mike to write music and lyrics.

The Lind role is being scripted for Anne Hathaway, who teamed with Jackman in his opening Oscars number."

Cool! Hugh Jackman! Anne Hathaway! P.T. Barnum! But, a musical?

Monday, August 3, 2009

Steven Spielberg sees invisible rabbits!


"Steven Spielberg will direct as his next film a contemporary adaptation of Mary Chase's Pulitzer Prize winning play 'Harvey', a co-production between Twentieth Century Fox and DreamWorks Studios. The announcement was made today by Fox Chairmen Jim Gianopulos and Tom Rothman and DreamWorks partners Stacey Snider and Spielberg.

Harvey is the first screenplay by the best-selling novelist Jonathan Tropper.

The film will be produced by Spielberg and Don Gregory, with Elizabeth Gabler and Carla Hacken overseeing the project for Fox 2000, which acquired the rights to the original play in 2008.

'I am very happy to be working again with my friend Tom Rothman who shepherded us through Minority Report, and with Elizabeth and Carla, who I'm looking forward to collaborating with,' said Spielberg. 'DreamWorks has experienced a creative and profitable relationship with Twentieth Century Fox in the past, and I look forward to renewing that time together.'

'Don Gregory entrusted us with these precious rights, Beth Gabler and Carla Hacken developed an exceptional screenplay and Jim and I had the easy part: Deciding to go first, before anyone else, to a filmmaker who combines the mastery of craft, tone, wit and insight that Harvey embodies," said Rothman. 'Steven Spielberg is film's greatest humanist. And we feel blessed as Elwood himself to be collaborating with him, Stacey, and everyone at DreamWorks.'

Harvey is the story of an amiable eccentric, Elwood P. Dowd, and his friendship with a six and a half feet tall invisible rabbit and how this affects every member of his family and his community. It won the Pulitzer Prize in 1944, and played on Broadway for 1,775 performances between 1944 and 1949. It later was adapted for the 1950 Universal film that starred Jimmy Stewart and Josephine Hull.

Added Stacey Snider: 'This is a story relevant for all times, perhaps more so than ever before. We are so pleased to be able, with Fox, to be bringing this to today's audiences.'

Casting and pre-production will begin immediately with cameras turning right after the first of the year as a joint venture between the two studios."

Never thought I'd see the day when Steven Spielberg would do a remake. But I'm not worried. My big question is, who's gonna play the Jimmy Stewart role?

Here's the trailer to the Jimmy Stewart version:

From the creators of TRUE LIES...


"While James Cameron is working on finishing December-opener Avatar, actor/comedian Tom Arnold has been talking to The New York Times, saying that he will be reuniting with the True Lies director and co-star Arnold Schwarzenegger for a movie next year:

Still, the future project Mr. Arnold said he's most excited about is a movie with a still-to-be-determined plot and script. 'All I know is Jim Cameron's making it and Arnold' — Mr. Schwarzenegger — 'and I are going to be in it, and it starts in 14 months, the day after Arnold stops being governor of California,' he said. 'It's not going to be called True Lies II, but it might as well be. I can live with that.'

Wishful thinking or is something really brewing? True Lies, which was released in July of 1994 (has it really been 15 years already?), earned $378.9 million worldwide."

I would love to see a True Lies II! And, as I've said before, it'll be good to see Arnold back on the big screen. If it's a comedy, all the better!

Here's the trailer to True Lies:

FUTURAMA gets its cast back!


"Futurama will return with its original voice cast.

After a standoff with 20th Century Fox TV over salary, the five Futurama actors on Friday reached an agreement with the producing studio to reprise their parts on the show, set to come back with new episodes on Comedy Central in mid-2010.

The deals for Katey Sagal, Maurice LaMarche, Tress MacNeille, John DiMaggio and Billy West all closed with 20th TV on Friday.

'We are thrilled to have our incredible cast back,' Futurama creators Matt Groening and David X. Cohen said in a statement. 'The call has already gone out to the animators to put the mouths back on the characters.'"

"GOOD NEWS, EVERYONE!!" as Prof. Farnsworth would say. Now, just when are those new episodes coming?