As usual, this Movie News Cheat Sheet is packed with text, but this week, much of that text is geared towards describing the slew of brand new stills that dropped over the past seven days. Not only did we get seven new images from John Carter, but a bunch from The Dark Knight Rises and Prometheus, too.
In casting news, word just got out that Gary Oldman turned down the part of The Colonel in Akira and, in rather off-beat casting news, the industry is shocked to learn that a casting associate on Super 8 as well as a number of other child actor-heavy productions is a registered sex offender.
On a lighter note, Aaron Sorkin admits he’s “strongly considering” penning that Steve Jobs biopic while the Red Dawn remake is finally making its way out from under the MGM mess to debut in theaters on November 2nd, 2012.
Not enough? Understandable considering we’re all heading back to work or school after a long, and hopefully enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday. But don’t you worry; we’ve got more than enough of the latest out of Hollywood to keep the conversation buzzing all week.
1. John Carter Images: It’s been over four months since the debut of the John Carter teaser, but now with the full trailer on the horizon, Walt Disney Pictures is kicking the promotion effort, revealing seven brand new stills from the film. Over at SFX we’ve got six images, a number of which focus on John Carter’s non-human elements including a Star Wars-esque airship and a beast called Woola. The last image over at EW.com shows Taylor Kitsch as John Carter alongside something a little less friendly looking than Woola, a White Ape. Director Andrew Stanton describes the beast as, “sort of an oversized gorilla in the books.” He admits the creatures don’t have much of a “narrative function” in the novels, but in his film, “we made the White Apes a formidable creature that you kind of hear about throughout the movie, but you never really witness.” Clearly eventually we do get a taste of what these White Apes are capable of and that big moment comes when “Carter was going have to get out of his execution sentence in order to move the story forward, and we thought what better than having to go up against this formidable creature?”
2. Breaking Dawn Birthing Scene Makes Moviegoers Sick: Oddly enough, the birthing scene was the one moment in The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 that quite literally blew me away. And not just in comparison to the rest of the film; this sequence is genuinely incredibly well done. However, according to CBS’ Sacramento affiliate, it’s that very moment in the film that caused a man to have a seizure. Kelly Bauman recalls that while watching the birthing scene, her boyfriend Brandon Gephart began convulsing. Gephart claims he doesn’t remember a thing until he came to and realized he was on the theater floor. Gephart was taken to the emergency room and is awaiting the care of a specialist, but this wasn’t the only incident of supposed birthing-scene-induced symptoms. Dr. Michael G. Chez, suggests that the scene could be causing photosensitive epilepsy, a condition “triggered by flashing red lights in people who are genetically predisposed.” Dr. Chez explains that a single seizure most likely will not result in long-term damage and for those who want to take extra precaution, pick up a pair of sunglasses with blue lenses to filter the red light.
3. Gary Oldman Opts of Out Akira: When you’re aiming to cast a top-notch actor like Gary Oldman, you’ve got to have a back up. As reported by Twitch, Oldman turned down the offer to star in Akira as The Colonel, but director Jaume Collet-Serra simply went on his merry way and offered the role to Inception’s Ken Watanabe. As we’ve just learned, an offer most certainly doesn’t confirm anything, but it’s far less likely Watanabe will turn down the part. According to his IMDb page, the actor seems to be keeping rather busy in Japan, but he has solidified quite the name for himself in the states courtesy of Cirque du Freak, Inception and more, but has still yet to name his next stateside venture.
4. Prometheus Stills: A prequel to Ridley Scott’s Alien, Prometheus follows a team of explorers who find something that could reveal the origins of mankind on Earth. Now, courtesy of Entertainment Weekly (via Bloody Disgusting), it’s time to meet some of those explorers. We’ve got an image of Logan Marshall Green, Noomi Rapace and Michael Fassbender all suited up in the midst of their mission. Another shot shows Rapace and Kate Dickle examining what looks quite a bit like a certain alien egg we’ve seen before and then there’s yet another image of Charlize Theron and Idris Elba manning the controls of their spacecraft. Check them all out for yourself right here and we’ll keep an eye out for even more material from Prometheus as the film’s June 8th, 2012 release date approaches.
5. Super 8 Casting Director A Registered Sex Offender: It’s one thing to discover a casting associate is a registered offender, but the casting associate for Super 8? Apparently Jason James Murphy has been on the up and up in the industry, but not once during his climb to the top did anyone realize he once kidnapped and molested an 8-year-old and served five years in prison for the offense. Murphy worked under the professional name Jason James and helped cast the kid-packed films Bad News Bears, The School of Rock and Cheaper by the Dozen 2. After completing his prison sentence and going through counseling, Murphy opted to move to Los Angeles where he was forced to register as a sex offender. The problem is, he registered under the name Jason James Murphy and worked under the name Jason James. According to California law, all sex offenders with victims under the age of 16 are prohibited from “working directly and in an unaccompanied setting with minor children on more than an incidental and occasional basis or have supervision or disciplinary power over minor children.” According to the LATimes.com, “There are no known complaints that Murphy acted inappropriately with any minor in his casting business.”
6. Release Date Updates: Bust out those day planners; we’ve got some release date changes and announcements to reveal. In order to make room for Pixels, the feature version of Patrick Jean’s short, Sony bumped back Roland Emmerich’s Singularity from May 17th, 2013 to November 1st, 2013 to give Pixels the May 17th debut. Then, the Red Dawn remake finally managed to emerge from the MGM bankruptcy haze to lock a November 2nd, 2012 release courtesy of FilmDistrict. Last up, Star Trek will return to the big screen with the release of J.J. Abrams’ sequel on May 5th, 2013. (via Box Office Mojo)
7. The Dark Knight Rises Images: The latest issue of Empire Magazine is packed with The Dark Knight Rises goodies, and topped off with them, too. In addition to the Bane (Tom Hardy) and Batman (Christian Bale) covers, Comingsoon.net got their hands on some scans of the material inside. One image features Batman standing amidst a group of corpses while another shows Bane rocking a surprisingly stylish coat and standing on top of his very own tumbler, holding up Harvey Dent’s (Aaron Eckhart) photo. Then there’s also a back shot of a muscular Bane squaring off with Batman on a rather damp set. As for the print, Christopher Nolan tells Empire, “Perhaps surprisingly for some people, our story picks up quite a bit later, eight years after The Dark Knight. So he’s an older Bruce Wayne; he’s not in a great state. With Bane, we’re looking to give Batman a challenge he hasn’t had before. With our choice of villain and with our choice of story we’re testing Batman both physically as well as mentally.” Then, over at Inquirer Entertainment, Bale himself got chatty, dishing on all of his The Dark Knight Rises co-stars, and talking about the emotions that came up after removing the Batman mask for the very last time.
8. Aaron Sorkin Inches Closer to the Steve Jobs Biopic: Shortly after the news of the planned Steve Jobs biopic hit the web, word got out that Aaron Sorkin was Sony’s top choice to pen the script. The most recent update comes from E! Online and quotes Sorkin as saying, “Sony has asked me to write the movie and it’s something I’m strongly considering.” Sorkin further explained, “Right now I’m just in the thinking-about-it stages,” and added, “It’s a really big movie and it’s going to be a great movie no matter who writes it.” In the meantime, Sorkin is doing a little research, reading Walter Isaacson’s authorized biography, the one Sony snagged the rights to adapt. As you may recall, Sorkin also had a personal experience with Jobs, something he told Newsweek shortly after Jobs passed. He told the outlet about a phone call from back in 2007, when Jobs felt compelled to tell Sorkin to keep his chin up even after his show Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip was canceled. In addition, Jobs also suggested that Sorkin pen a Pixar script, but Sorkin declined, explaining, “I have a young kid who loves Pixar movies and she’ll turn cartwheels if I tell her I’m writing one and I don’t want to disappoint her by writing the only bad movie in the history of Pixar.”
9. Trailers: Chimpanzee, Beauty and the Beast 3D, Journey 2: The Mysterious Island: Disneynature is back with another wildlife exploration. We got Earth back in 2009 and then Oceans in 2010 followed by this year’s African Cats and for Earth Day 2012 it’s all about chimpanzees. Per usual, the trailer is packed with stellar scenery, adorable stars and, this time more so than ever, some rather heart wrenching material. In attempt to follow in the footsteps of the highly successful 3D re-release of The Lion King, Disney is gearing up for Beauty and the Beast’s return to the big screen with an extra dimension. Sure, I loved the film as a kid and still do, but there’s something rather uninspiring about seeing a trailer that’s really just more of the same other than the obligatory title cards. Last up we’ve got a new international trailer for Journey 2: The Mysterious Island and it seems as though the folks behind this film’s marketing campaign think Americans require more cheesy comedy than moviegoers abroad. I prefer the overseas version.
10. Box Office: The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 may have dominated the Thanksgiving weekend, but that doesn’t mean the other contenders didn’t nab a nice piece of the pie. The Muppets opened fairly strong with an $8,576 per theater average and a $29.5 million total while Happy Feet Two saw a mere 36.9% fall for a $13.4 million second weekend out. Arthur Christmas is really the only newcomer that had a tough time, posting just $12.7 million in 3,376 theaters on a $3,762 per theater average. On the other hand, Hugo managed to pull in $11.4 million in just 1,277 locations to snag the fifth position. Oh, and Breaking Dawn? Even after a 69.9% hit, the latest edition of The Twilight Saga still snagged another $42 million, bringing its domestic total to $221.3 million. (via Box Office Mojo)