Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Who Watches the ProductionMen?

Unfortunately, here we are again. You never really know who will be the right team to bring these things you love to life, I was very scared when the unknown "Hugh Jackman" was brought in last minute to wear the honored adamantium claws. I was sure we had a winner when I read parts of the Marc Steven Johnson "Daredevil" script. I knew Aronofsky would do right by Batman and when he was fired it was surely the end of the Dark Knight. Well, you never know what may come around, you never can be sure, and even the best recipe and best ingredients can fail. Keep this in mind when thinking about the "Watchman" project. Here we are again, taunted by the possibility of Watchman as a serious, well scripted film project. It haunts our dreams ... okay my dreams. I loved the director, Paul Greengrass who saw it as a political thriller about fear and power. A very sensible, keen viewpoint! The script by David Hayter has been heralded by many as a miracle, that actually condenses a dense complex story into an exciting and cogent two hour movie. Terry Gillain, had once stated the story could never be told in under 12 hours. Even Alan Moore, himself, praised the script. (of course he also said he wouldn't see the movie) So the news that the whole project was canned was hard to bare. Is the news that its back at another studio a welcome move? Don't know, because they canned the Director and the script. So now we are back at the beginning. But we can take heart in a few things: One, that DC/Warner seems to be on the right track with "Batman Begins" and the new Superman film. They seem to want to create a higher standard of comic film and "Watchmen" can certainly do that for them. Two, the buzz on the upcoming Alan Moore related comic to film project, "V For Vendetta" is getting very positive. Maybe this means serious comic book movies are being taken, dare I say it, Seriously? Still, "Watchmen" is the finest of comic book epics and whenever it goes back to square one I become weary of all the choices that could go very wrong on the road to production. Cast John Cusack as the NightOwl and I'll start to relax.

Exclusive: Which Studio Is Watching Watchmen?
From http://filmforce.ign.com/articles/676/676592p1.html
Back from the dead and looking for new blood.
by Stax

FilmForce has confirmed that the long-in-development feature film version of Watchmen is not quite as dead as fans feared after Paramount put it into turnaround last summer, just months before it was slated to film.

Good news first. Producers Lloyd Levin and Larry Gordon have officially set up Watchmen at Warner Bros. (Entertainment Weekly reported a few months back that Gordon and Levin were in talks with Warners.) This studio makes sense as it belongs to the Time Warner empire, as does Watchmen's comic book publisher, DC Comics. Warners has revitalized the comic book movie genre with its gritty, A-list Batman Begins and looks to stay the course with next year's Superman Returns and V for Vendetta.

Like Vendetta, Watchmen is based on a work by lauded comics scribe Alan Moore. With the buzz beginning to turn positive for Vendetta, Warners is understood to want to have another Moore property on-hand should Vendetta prove a success.

Now for the not so good news. Politically charged filmmaker Paul Greengrass no longer appears attached to direct Watchmen, which is a shame considering how well he understood and respected the material. Furthermore, David Hayter's script also appears to have been set aside; Watchmen is now considered an open writing assigment, which means the development process begins anew. Hayter's screenplay adaptation was widely praised online (including by myself) for its fidelity to the complex source material.

IGN FilmForce contacted Mr. Hayter, who was surprisingly candid about these recent developments. "I believe that Paul's schedule dictated that he move on after Paramount was unable to meet their commitment to make the film on the previously set timetable, though I am not certain whether Warners still has Paul in mind for a later date, or if they are just starting again with a new director.

"As for the script going up as an open writing assignment, I have not heard that definitively, but it wouldn't particularly surprise me," Hayter advised IGN. "I would, of course, be disappointed, and do not personally feel that this is a necessary step, as the screenplay is pretty perfect as it is. However, the same concerns raised at other studios have been raised at the WB ( i.e., too complex, too dark, too many characters) and after five years of work on this project, I am no longer willing to continue messing with material that I have meticulously developed for the past half a decade just to please another timid studio. I believe that Watchmen must be embraced wholly for what it is – a complex, hyper-intelligent epic – rather than turned into something simpler for studio comfort. In the latter case, it should not be made at all.

"If another writer wants to undertake that route, then I wish them the best, and fervently hope the film is not ruined as a result. As a fan, I did not revive interest in this project only to see it go the way of Daredevil. That said, I know that both Larry Gordon and Lloyd Levin's integrity and belief in this project is solid, and I wish them all the success in the world."

Ultimately, said Hayter, "Nobody wants to see Watchmen done right more than myself."

I sure hope this is good!! I would love to love this (yeech) Michael Bay project.
Spring! The Season for Transforming!!
From http://www.hollywoodnorthreport.com/article.php?Article=2288

HNR can now confirm that Michael Bay (Armageddon, The Rock) is set to roll into town to shoot his next mega flick, the live action version of Transformers! Set construction in North Vancouver is set to begin in February 2006 with a Spring start tipped.

Sorry Frank, the first one charmed us with creative style, you can't recreate the first time. Stop after Sin City 2. Please!

Frank Miller Talks Sin City 2, 3, 4, 5, 6?

Writer/Director is insane!

From http://www.empireonline.com/news/story.asp?NID=17745

We talked to Frank Miller recently and he told us a little about the development of Sin City 2, due out August 18 next year. Here's what he had to say:

"I'm finishing the script right now for Sin City 2 – I can't wait to get back behind the camera. If I have my way, there's going to be five [films] – but that's if I have my way! Five would take care of all the graphic novels – but there's new material that I'm writing for the second one. There'll probably also be a separate graphic novel that I'll do. It's a Nancy Callahan story that I've been wanting to do."

And on a Holiday Note...

From http://www.defamer.com

Hollywood Holiday Cards:

Brett Ratner's X-Mas


Yes, this latest installment in our Hollywood Holiday Cards feature is a little blurry, but no amount of rubbing your eyes will change what you're seeing: Brett Ratner, the famed fauxteur currently shooting the latest X-Men project, dressed as some kind of mini-Wolverine at the center of his cast of mutants. (Click the image for a larger version.) At first, we thought that Ratner had wastefully demanded that his wardrobe department make him his own "Wolverstein" (the name of his character as revealed on the inside of the card) costume, conjuring images of the leather-clad director nearly beheading his DP with his claws while trying to demonstrate a needlessly showy camera move. But then we noticed how bunchy the legs of his pants seem around the ankles and figured he's just playing dress-up in Hugh Jackman's clothes, hopefully sparing the cast and crew unnecessary lacerations by their excitable director.

The inside of the card is after the jump:


Oh, I get it ....Xmas...X-Men...Pure, Sweet Comedy!! Get Back to work Brett, you need all the time you don't have.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

The Mixed Bag of Stuff Before X-Mas

I've been really busy, soon I'll be in Maine for a few weeks and I'll have little access to the net. I'll try to do a few updates anyway.
Happy Holidays to all!
and to those who feel Christmas is being drowned out by secularism and want to keep things traditional, By All Means:
"Enjoy the Winter Solstice and Evergreen Worship"
(Whether you celebrate the traditional decorated evergreen tree inside your house from the Egyptian, Roman or Druid cultures)
Remember, Jesus was born in the month of Tishri (Late September/ early October).
So it's kind of a belated birthday. He won't mind at all. He was pretty chill.
On with the show.....

I just saw this 2nd "V for Vendetta" trailer. I know people think they went the wrong way with this, but the trailer looks amazing. I have to go see this to see if the Alan Moore curse is liftable. What do you think? (I love the dominos!!)


I just said something about this didn't I? I must have forgotten to knock on wood after. Well, it's my fault. Star Trek has to be buried for a decade and then unearthed. It really should learn to hibernate with dignity.
For the record, I love Shatner, he constantly survives and embraces "hasbeenery" like no one else. And "Boston Legal" is a very funny show. I'm soo glad he has an Emmy. No matter what he does "Star Trek", "TJ Hooker", "Rescue 911", "Boston Legal", his albumns "The Transformed Man", "Has Been" and especially "Free Enterprise" the indie movie where he plays himself with a passion for doing Julius Ceaser as a one man show in Rap verse, everything he does is funny!! Not always on purpose, but that's secondary! He is truly an original. Gotta love those wacky Canadians

Happy Chanukah KIRRRRK!!

"You dont need 'Deck the Halls' or 'Jingle Bell Rock'
cause you can spin the dradle with Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock (both jewish)"
-Adam Sandler, The Chanukah Song

Kirk Returns?

From http://canmag.com/news/4/3/2605

Long Time Reader, First Time Writer, Blahdey, Blah, Blah….

I just worked as a stuntman on a film called "Honor", by David Worth, starring Jason Barry and Roddy Piper. TV actress Linda Park was also in the film. She was in the TV show "Enterprise" playing Hoshi Sato.
Have I got some gossip for you? Potentially, 'encouraging' gossip. I was reading on a few sites that the plan for the next Star Trek movie is to do it as a prequel with young Starfleet commanders. I don't know if that's true, or was true, but it's not anymore. The latest is that the new film is more of a sequel than anything else. SO WHATEVER YOU'VE BEEN READING OR REPORTING – FORGET IT. IT'S ALL CHANGED.

The current script – I ASSUME 'ONE' OF MANY - apparently has events set in what is called a "Mirror" Universe. It will enable Trek actors past and present to play roles, including William Shatner. Apparently Shatner was in talks to do a guest role on Enterprise, but it didn't work out. Why? Apparently he wanted a) more money b) would rather do Trek films. Solution? The ideas for the episode of the "Enterprise" episode he was going to do will now be incorporated into a movie. Yep, Captain kirk's back - SOMEHOW. The actress wasn't unsure of her involvement or her show's cast's involvement but said she "thinks" it'll be Shatner, Captain Picard and maybe Archer.

This one is a funny, but not uncommon problem in the superhero game. After all, if you wear your underwear on the outside, and all that jazz, things can become embarrassing. Burt Ward, 1960's Television's "Robin" also had this problem. You'd think they'd come up with a better answer then turning it into a "special effect."
Maybe a new tailor? A Codpiece?
Imagine you own a CGI company.
I'm talking to you at a party and I ask you what project you just worked on.
"Superman Returns: We did CGI work" you answer.
I'm impressed, so I say "Wow! you worked on Superman!! What did you do?
Make him fly? Help him lift a car? Use his heat vision?"
"No," you say, "I erased his crotch."
Conversation over.
Is Superman's 'Bulge' a CGI Fabrication?

Brandon Routh is the Man of Steel in Superman Returns.
Did Warner Bros. order Bryan Singer to cover up the southern part of Brandon Routh's tights?

A UK tabloid claims Warner Bros. has ordered director Bryan Singer to digitally cover up the bulge in actor Brandon Routh's Superman briefs.

The studio reportedly thought it would be a distraction. The paper's source says "It's a major issue for the studio. Brandon is extremely well endowed and they don't want it up on the big screen. We may be forced to erase his package with digital effects.
Latino Review says costume designers admit "the bulge indeed was the most complicated issue in terms of the costuming, they worked out a practical solution involving a codpiece and special padding which ultimately negates the issue."

James Marsden (Richard White), Brandon Routh
(Clark Kent / Kal-El / Superman), Parker Posey
(Kitty Koslowski) and Kevin Spacey (Lex Luthor).
A similar story circulated about Ioan Gruffudd's Mr. Fantastic costume in Fantastic Four.

(add your "Mr. Fantastic" Joke here) ___________________

Bob Gough
Source: Latino Review

WHOOHOOOO! Madman is in my top ten,"Best Original Comics" list. I knew Rodriquez was a friend of Mike Allred (Madman's creator) and had the option for a Madman movie. So I have been waiting years to hear "GO!" on this colorful project. This movie would be everything that "SIN CITY" is not: visually, bright, vibrant and almost wholesome, yet on the verge of madness. This movie would be the Technicolor yin to SIN CITY's yang. Let's hope we get a movie about
"Frank Einstein, the Madman of Snap City!!"

Robert Rodriguez DVD FANATIC Chat Highlights

From http://www.filmrot.com/articles/news/006611.php

Director Robert Rodriquez dropped in on DVDFanatic for a live web-chat to promote his newest release Sin City: Uncut, Extended, Unrated .....
On what other comic-book series he'd like to adapt...
I've always been a fan of Mike Allred's MADMAN series. he's a great guy too. he's actually who I first called to get me in touch with Frank Miller.
On the rumored Sin City TV series...
As for a TV Series, I think that was just miramax talk. we havent' discussed actually doing that.
I can't tell you how happy this news makes me. More films first, then TV! And not network or basic cable!
On why Sin City 2 will be based on Miller's A Dame To Kill ...
What I like about DAME TO KILL FOR is that it has a lot of characters from SIN CITY in it... Marv is still alive, Dwight doesnt have his new face yet, Gail is in it, Goldie AND Wendy are in it as twin sisters... Miho... new characters as well. it felt like if we could expand on that story and make it bigger overall, that'd be our best choice for a sequel.

A Second Look At The X-men Trailer

A good team:
Wolvie, Storm, Colossus, Icemen, Rogue and Kitty Pryde. That's my kind of XTeam!

Juggernaut- ehhh, why the fake skin. looks like a halloween costune. I do like the helmet, being just like Magneto's and being especially made to protect him from his stepbrother.

The Brotherhood of Muntants? no. The Hellfire Club!! Why?
Just to put the name in the Movie? Poopy! Omega Red is supposed to be in there somewhere.

Again, Frazier looks awesome!!! I need to hear him talk. I need a real trailer!!
Here's Action Beast!!

And here's "refined thoughtful pause" Beast!
Collect them all!!

Good old Petey Rasputin. The real "man of steel". Here's hoping he has at least a slight Russian accent in X3.

'Arrested Development' Alive?
Ratings-challenged show may move to ABC or Showtime
Ratings-challenged critical darling 'Arrested Development,' in limbo at Fox, has drawn interest from both ABC and Showtime.

Fox still hasn't officially canceled "Arrested Development," but if it does, other networks are interested in the show.
Both ABC and Showtime have had conversations with 20th Century Fox TV and indicated they're open to making a deal for new episodes of the critically beloved, Emmy-winning comedy from creator Mitch Hurwitz. No formal negotiations have taken place, and there are still numerous hurdles that might prevent such a move -- including the show's hefty pricetag.
That said, those familiar with the talks described them as serious, with Showtime said to be in particularly hot pursuit of the ratings-challenged laffer, now on life support at Fox. SkeinSkein's third-season order was recently cut to 13 episodes.
Showtime could be a good place for "Arrested." Skein's subversive humor and heavily serialized storylines always made it a tough sell as a mass-appeal broadcast series. What's more, Showtime already has a potential companion for "Arrested" in "Weeds," which just received a second-season pickup. That show is a suburban satire centered on a drug-dealing soccer mom played by Mary-Louise ParkerMary-Louise Parker.
ABC, meanwhile, is also looking to make its mark in comedy, having already established itself as the home of TV's most buzzworthy dramas ("Lost," "Desperate Housewives," "Grey's Anatomy"). Net has high hopes for upcoming laffers, such as "Emily's Reason's Why Not," "Crumbs" and "Sons and Daughters," as well as a sophomore contender, "Jake in Progress."
Since Fox has yet to officially cop to canceling "Arrested," 20th can't formally make any deals with another net. There are other barriers to setting the show up elsewhere, however.
Studio has already deficited millions in order to produce the show, which costs about $1. 6 million per half-hour to produce. It's believed 20th deficits about $400,000 per episode.

Even if ABC or Showtime stepped up with the same license fee Fox now forks over for the show, 20th execs will have to decide whether it's worth it to sink more money into a show that isn't a proven ratings winner. That's one reason the studio might push for at least a 22-episode (or greater) commitment from a net.
Studio needs 36 episodes to get "Arrested" to the magic number of 88 episodes required for syndication. But even if it gets to syndication, there's no guarantee of a rich payday in the off-netoff-net market.
On the other hand, "Arrested" is a winner in the DVD market, and more episodes mean more DVD sales. Skein could also take off if given mass exposure on a cablercabler such as Showtime -- particularly now that the feeveefeevee cabler is part of Leslie Moonves' CBS Corp. family.
Studio, Showtime and ABC declined comment.