Today is the first day of July and you know what that means; San Diego Comic Con is coming! With the big event less than two weeks away, the official schedules have been released and, as expected, SDCC 2012 is packed with some of the best of the best in upcoming theatrical releases. Even better? will be on site to bring you all the latest straight from San Diego!

But before we get to all the news that’ll likely pour out of that event, we’ve got a few new casting updates to announce. The Descendants’ Nick Krause just snagged a new gig, leading Tim McCann’s White Rabbit while model-actress Zoe Aggeliki is supposedly rather close to locking the role of Johanna Mason in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.

Former co-workers claiming that he stole their stripper moves is likely the last thing on Channing Tatum’s mind as his new release, Magic Mike, hit it big at the box office. However, even though Magic Mike did eat up a nice chunk of the pie, there was still more than enough left for Ted to earn the honor of being the 8th highest opening of 2012.

You think that’s some good stuff? Hold on because there’s so much more coming your way in your weekly Movie News Cheat Sheet!

1. White Rabbit Gets a Shape-Shifter and a Surfer Dude: Director Tim McCann just made two appealing casting choices. According to THR, he picked up True Blood’s Sam Trammell and The Descendants’ Nick Krause to star in his “dark drama with fantasy elements,” White Rabbit. Anthony Di Pietro penned the script about a high school student suffering from bullying who winds up having visions of a rabbit he killed back when he was nine-years-old. That rabbit, as well as a handful of other imaginary characters, turn out to be quite menacing as they strive to get him to retaliate. Krause is on board to lead as that student while Trammell will step in as his father. The plan is to start shooting in New Orleans at the end of July.

2. Zoe Aggeliki Might Be Johanna Mason: Our first confirmed Hunger Games: Catching Fire casting announcement could be right around the corner. As reported by Deadline, Jena Malone is still up for the role of District 7 victor Johanna Mason, but it looks as though Zoe Aggeliki might beat her for the part. The outlet notes that the model-actress “is the one in the most serious talks.” As a fan of Malone’s work, her missing out on the part is rather disappointing, but, then again, there’s really no judging Aggeliki’s ability as we haven’t seen her in much just yet. She’s got roles in R.I.P.D. and Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, but we’ve got to wait until June 28, 2013 for the former and until August 16, 2013 for the later.

3. San Diego Comic Con is Coming: The official schedule is live and there are a slew of hot properties hitting San Diego Comic Con this year! The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 kicks things off with a bang as the first movie panel to go down in Hall H followed by the Walt Disney Studios event which features Frankenweenie, Oz The Great and Powerful and Wreck-it Ralph. Terry Crews, Randy Couture, Dolph Lundgren, Jean Claude Van Damme, and Arnold Schwarzenegger will all be on hand to discuss The Expendables 2 on Thursday while Kodi Smit-McPhee, Anna Kendrick and Christopher Mintz-Plasse will be in the house on Friday morning for ParaNorman. Sony will be busy later in the afternoon hosting a two-hour panel for Total Recall, Looper and Elysium and Quentin Tarantino is set to show off his latest, Django Unchained, early the next morning. Warner Bros and Legendary Pictures join forces to present Pacific Rim, Man of Steel and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey after which Marvel Studios takes the stage for Iron Man 3. The team will be on the ground bringing you all the latest from Hall H, the press rooms, parties and more. Be sure to keep an eye on the site for all your SDCC news when we arrive in San Diego on July 11th.

4. RIP Nora Ephron: Six years ago, playwright and screenwriter Nora Ephron was diagnosed with a pre-leukemic condition known as myelodysplastic syndrome. On June 26th, the 71-year-old died of complications from the blood disorder. While Ephron may be gone her legacy undoubtedly lives on through acclaimed films including When Harry Met Sally…, Sleepless in Seattle, My Blue Heaven and so much more. There’s really no better way to frame Ephron’s career that with what movie scholar and historian Jeanne D. Basinger noted in the Washington Post, “Nora Ephron has quietly been one of the most significant women in film history.”

5. Channing Tatum and Will Arnett to Play Legos: The Dark Knight Rises and Man of Steel have some serious competition ahead of them – Lego-sized competition. According to Variety, Will Arnett is locked to voice Lego Batman while Channing Tatum is being courted to voice Lego Superman in Warner Bros’ Lego movie. Phil Lord and Christopher Miller are co-directing the live-action/Lego-based animation hybrid, which will feature the voice of Chris Pratt as the lead character, Emmet, an average guy, er, Lego guy, who’s mistakenly dubbed the extraordinary MasterBuilder. Thanks to his erroneous new title, Emmet is whisked away to join a fellowship working to put an end to an evil tyrant who’s trying to glue the universe together. The little Legos are due to hit the big screen on February 28, 2014.

6. The Case of Channing Tatum and the Stolen Dance Movies: In other Channing Tatum news, via THR, the Magic Mike star is busy refuting accusations that he used his former stripper colleagues’ stories in the movie. Thomas “Awesome” Austin and London Steele claim that they worked with Tatum in Tampa, Florida and that they see a likeness between their own stories and some of the Magic Mike characters. The duo also isolated certain stripper moves that they once taught Tatum including one called “The Hot Seat.” While promoting the film at a junket, Tatum explained, “Those guys have been trying to make money off of me since I got into this business,” and insists the characters aren’t based on anyone. “Look, there’s nothing that’s factual in this whole movie other than that I was an 18-year-old kid and went into this world and I dropped out of college from playing football and was living on my sister’s couch.” Want to get a taste of the pre-Hollywood heartthrob Tatum? THR also has a photo and video of the actor in action back in the late 90s.

7. Rose Byrne Might Join The Internship: Finally! After a handful of unmemorable performances in films like Knowing and Adam, Byrne is finally opting to stick with a genre that works quite well for her – comedy. (However, I must note that I do give her two very enthusiastic thumbs up for Insidious as well.) After surprising us all with a hysterical performance as Jackie Q in Get Him to the Greek and starring as Kristen Wiig’s hilarious adversary in Bridesmaids, Byrne looks to take on another comedy role, starring opposite Owen Wilson in The Internship. According to EW, Byrne is in final talks to take the role of a member of upper management of a Silicon Valley tech firm who commits a major human resources no-no by going after Wilson’s 40-something intern. Director Shawn Levy is due to get behind the lens for this one on July 9th.

8. Paperman Makes Wreck-It Ralph Even More Appealing: Psyched to catch Wreck-It Ralph in November? Disney’s got a little something else to raise anticipation further, a short film called Paperman. Now, Disney has gotten into the habit of showing shorts before its features, especially when it comes to Pixar films, so what makes Paperman so special? It’s fusing the new with the old, using a brand new technique that combines computer-generated animation with hand-drawn animation, and the results are absolutely stunning. Disney recently revealed a trio of stills from the John Kahrs-directed black and white film, which takes place in mid-century New York City and focuses on a lonely office worker who tries to win the girl of his dreams with a stack of papers. Click here to check out all the images over at EW and get an in-depth look at the production process via Kahrs himself.

9. Trailers: The Man with the Iron Fists, The Silver Linings Playbook, Frankenweenie, Alex Cross: Need to let off some steam? Why not let RZA do it for you? The red band trailer for his directorial debut, The Man with the Iron Fists, is jam packed with some of the most brutal big screen violence we’ve seen in quite a while. Jumping over to the more comedic/dramatic side, we’ve got the first trailer for the Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence-starrer The Silver Linings Playbook. The trailer has a charming light feel to it and also suggests that both Cooper and Lawrence benefit from particularly well-developed characters, characters that they give themselves to completely. We get some typical Tim Burton kid-friendly eeriness from the new trailer for Frankenweenie. Going a step beyond the previous promo, this one offers a peek at what happens after Bob brings Sparky back to life. As there was just one too many trailer unveilings this week to keep this section to just three pieces, I bring you a bonus – the trailer for Alex Cross. After Madea’s Witness Protection, not only is a thrill to see Tyler Perry on screen wearing something other than a fat suit, but his showdown with Matthew Fox’s Picasso is fantastically vicious.

10. Box Office: Wow. Ted and Magic Mike. Just, wow. Excuse the lack of eloquence, but these two films not only exceeded expectations, but they absolutely demolished them. Ted is officially the 8th highest opening of the year with $54.1 million on a stellar $16,703 per theater average. While Magic Mike might not have claimed the top spot, a $39.2 million start on a $7 million budget is certainly something to be proud of. Even with Ted and Magic Mike pulling in an incredible amount of cash, Brave still managed to take another $34 million to the bank while Madea’s Witness Protection got off to a Tyler Perry-appropriate start with about $26.4 million. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted even managed to hold on rather strong, only losing 40.1% for another $11.8 million. (via Box Office Mojo)

By Perri Nemiroff


By Perri Nemiroff

Film producer and director best known for her work in movies such as FaceTime, Trevor, and The Professor. She has worked as an online movie blogger and reporter for sites such as,, Shockya, and MTV's Movies Blog.

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