Happy holiday, Shockya.com readers! As you’ve still got a few hours until the fireworks and BBQs begin, why not catch up on your week of movie news?
This week’s Movie News Cheat Sheet is absolutely brimming with sequels. Not only is the Toy Story franchise likely to continue, but Thor and Red are poised for seconds, too. As for the sequels already in production, we’ve got a roundup of the latest out of the The Dark Knight Rises set as well as an update on Paramount’s casting effort for G.I. Joe 2: Cobra Strikes. Justifying all of this sequel buzz, Transformers: Dark of the Moon proves that franchises do pack the power as its $97.4 million three-day haul helped it demolish box office records.
As for original material, there isn’t much, but what we do have is prime with promise. Drew Barrymore is about to lock down her second directing venture and Tarsem Singh shows off his top-notch visuals in the new trailer for Immortals.
While many had the opportunity to wrap up their workweek early courtesy of Independence Day, the movie industry’s as busy as ever. Check out the details of all the aforementioned stories and more in this week’s Movie News Cheat Sheet.
1. The Toy Story Franchise Continues: Wrapping up the series with a wildly critically and financially successful film would have been a great way to go out, right? Sure, but this is Hollywood we’re talking about and that would mean the end of a lucrative franchise. Regardless of director Lee Unkrich insisting that Toy Story 3 would wrap up the saga, Woody himself, Tom Hanks, said the show will go on and Toy Story 4 is imminent. In fact, while promoting Larry Crowne, Hanks said, “They’re working on it now. There you go.” While it was hard to say goodbye to Woody and the gang, it was nice to know they were going out with such a bang whereas now, the thought of them potentially stumbling across the finish line is rather concerning and entirely unnecessary. (via Bleeding Cool)
2. The Dark Knight Rises Roundup: We’ve yet to go a week without The Dark Knight Rises news or rumors and, at this rate, likely won’t until the film arrives next summer. First up, we’ve got some set photos of the brand new Wayne Manor, courtesy of Batman-News.com. There’s also been a little word on Anne Hathaway’s Catwoman costume via a Hollywood Life insider. Apparently the getup will include goggles and “it’s going to be less sexy than Halle Berry and Michelle Pfeiffer’s Catwoman costumes. She’s going to look more like a robber.” Some footage also surfaced on YouTube (via Cinemablend) showing Hathaway and Christian Bale on set filming a scene during which the two ditch an unanswered door in the rain. Lastly, according to sound recordist Frederick Z. Roche, Batman is adding “2 Attack Helicopters in the same design as the Bat Mobile from The Dark Knight” to his vehicle collection.
3. G.I. Joe Gets Some Fresh Faces For Round 2: Even though NBC gave the TV show Wonder Woman a thumbs down, star Adrianne Palicki will still get her opportunity to play a superhero. Palicki joins G.I. Joe 2: Cobra Strikes as leading lady, Lady Jane. Channing Tatum is a go to return while both Ray Park and Lee Byung-hun are expected to follow suit. Dwayne Johnson recently signed to play Roadblock and, according to THR, both RZA and D.J. Cotrona are on board as well, set to star as Blind Master and Flint, respectively. According to Deadline, Paramount’s out to cast fast as they’ll need a potential summer blockbuster for 2012 and Star Trek 2 won’t be ready to go, making G.I. Joe and World War Z the studio’s top options. Apparently there are rumblings that Paramount’s eyeing Bruce Willis for the coveted role of the original G.I. Joe, Joe Colton.
4. Drew Barrymore to Get Back Behind the Lens for Heist Society: After a successful first go at directing bringing Shauna Cross’ Derby Girl to the big screen with Whip It, Drew Barrymore is back for more. She’ll be sticking with the book-to-film process with Ally Carter’s Heist Society to be penned by Whip It scribe, Cross. The book focuses on a young woman named Kat Bishop, born into a family of thieves. After ditching her life of crime for a more noble existence, her father gets into a life-threatening mess and Kat has no choice but to use her duplicitous skills to clear his name and save his life. Warner Bros. is the studio behind this one and is opting to up the ages of the main characters, putting them in their early 20s rather than their teens, a smart choice as while reading the book, the characters’ youth is the sole element that doesn’t sit quite right. (via THR)
5. Roland Emmerich has a New Project in the Works: The king of demolishing the globe via CGI is back. After Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow and 2012 Roland Emmerich is reportedly going sci-fi for Sony. The piece’s working title is Singularity and the studio is aiming to unleash it on May 17th, 2013. In the meantime, it should be interesting to see how one of Emmerich’s few non-CGI drenched projects does when the period piece hits theaters on October 28th. Anonymous focuses on the theory that Shakespeare (Rafe Spall) never penned his plays, rather Edward De Vere, Earl of Oxford (Rhys Ifans). (via Deadline)
6. Twilight Snags 12 Teen Choice Nomination: Forget the fact that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is the superior movie; The Twilight Saga: Eclipse earned 12 Teen Choice nominations as compared to Potter’s mere five. On the bright side, there are a few categories packed with some very worthy contenders namely Scott Pilgrim in the action categories and Bridesmaids in the comedy sections. But, of course, we’ve also got some absolutely absurd options up for honors like The Roommate, Take Me Home Tonight and Little Fockers. Fingers crossed that come Sunday, August 7th, all the 13 to 19-year-olds out there will award their votes to the worthy opponents, perhaps Super 8’s Riley Griffiths for the “Scene Stealer Male” category and Let Me In for best horror film. (via Teen Choice Awards Website)
7. Sequel Alert: Wolverine, Thor, Red Whether you like it or not, when movies make money, sequels follow. However, we’ve got a trio of #2s on the way and two of the three actually have some promise. Of the lot, Wolverine 2 is the one I could do without and, unfortunately, that’s the first one out of the gate. As reported by the Toronto radio station 98.1 CHFI, star Hugh Jackman revealed, “We shoot in October, so it will probably come out a year after that.” Onto brighter things; Thor 2 is heading towards a July 26th, 2013 release date, but without the first film’s director, Kenneth Branagh. However, according to Deadline, Branagh isn’t out completely as he’ll “be involved in some producing capacity.” Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer scribe, Don Payne, was recently hired to pen the Thor 2 script. The more surprising of the bunch is the return of the action comedy Red. Producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura told MTV, “We just got a script and it’s really good. We’re all just now discussing how to put it all back together again.” He added, “We want to go back and play with those characters, because it was so much fun to do it.”
8. Official Prometheus Synopsis Revealed: Perhaps in an effort to clear the air of the wrath of rumors, 20th Century Fox released the official synopsis for Ridley Scott’s Prometheus. Of the portion that actually speaks to what this film is about, we get very little concerning the plot and none of it speaks to the statements made by Damon Lindelof who had a hand on the script:
“But I also do feel that this movie is the movie I would want to see as a fanboy, take place in that Alien universe, which precedes the events of the original Alien, but is not necessarily burdened by all the tropes of that franchise with Facehuggers and Chestbursters, and all that stuff that I love … but it’s sorta like, we’ve seen it before, can we do something different this time?”
And that’s the movie that Ridley wanted to make.
Then there’s Michael Fassbender’s recent words on the production: “The thing is, it’s not a prequel. It definitely is separate. It is a separate story, but there are threads that connect the stories.” So what is Prometheus? Apparently we’re not getting our answer now as this synopsis doesn’t shed light on any of our questions in the least. One thing we do know is that Ben Foster has officially joined the cast, which includes Fassbender, Idris Elba, Charlize Theron, Noomi Rapace and Guy Pearce. (via JoBlo)
9. Trailers: Immortals, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, War Horse: How about a slew of incredibly stimulating visuals to kick off your week? Immortals continues to impress in the promotional department, adding a trailer packed with astonishing imagery to its pristine collection of posters. The first trailer for the fourth Mission: Impossible film also dropped and, sure enough, it’s packed with material featuring Tom Cruise in the midst of explosions and gunfire. However, on top of the riveting action powered to the tune of Eminem and Pink’s “Won’t Back Down” is an excellent amount of exposition letting even the non-franchise fans join in on the fun. On the other hand, the Wars Horse trailer is lacking in the story department, so regardless of how rousing the footage is, it’s tough to care when all you know is that it’s a movie about a horse.
10. Box Office: The three-day weekend numbers are in and it should come as no surprise that the Transformers franchise hit it big yet again with film #3. Dark of the Moon is off to a strong start with a $24,271 per theater average and a whopping $97.4 million to show for it, making it the top grossing Independence Day weekend opener ever. Sure enough, Cars 2 fell hard in week two, losing 62% of its week one profits and coming in with $25.1 million. The third position went to Bad Teacher, which dropped 55.4% to take in another $14.1 million. A-listers Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts weren’t enough for Larry Crowne to gain traction. The $30 million-budget film finished its first three days with a rather weak $13 million. Speaking of poor week one performers, Monte Carlo is off to a lackluster start, taking in just $7.6 million in just under 2,500 theaters. (via Box Office Mojo)
By Perri Nemiroff