Comic Con weekend brought big news on all the upcoming genre films. Below we have breakdowns, previews and more for Avatar, Tron, Iron Man, Avengers, Thor, Book of Eli, GI Joe and many more. Get your SDCC run-down below.
GENRE MOVIE NEWS FOR THE WEEK
SDCC ’09: "Avatar Day": Watch 15 Minutes of Avatar For Free on August 21st
Near the end of the panel for "Avatar" director James Cameron revealed that on August 21st, 15 minutes of footage from the film will be screened for Free in "as many" IMAX 3-D and Digital 3-D theaters Fox can get into. In addition to the free screenings, the worldwide launch of the first trailer for the movie will take place on same day on all screen formats and online. You can read the full press release at this link. In regards to the panel, six scenes were shown, equaling about 25 minutes of footage . A video from the panel has been uploaded and you can watch it below. For full text impressions, head on over to Collider, ComingSoon, FirstShowing, io9 and /Film (and here). Here are some various other bites:
- The official website for the film has gone live at AvatarMovie.com.
- James Cameron talks about how he fought with Fox to keep his aliens looking weird… [io9]
- …and here’s an interview with him touting 3-D technology. [SCI FI Wire]
Footage from the panel
SDCC ’09: Iron Man 2 Footage Impresses Crowds
The footage of "Iron Man 2" screened at Comic-Con, which featured our first look at War Machine (played by Don Cheadle), brought the audience to its feet. Cheadle was joined on stage by co-stars Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man/Tony Stark), Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow) and director Jon Favreau and producer Kevin Feige. Here are some highlights from the panel:
- Two clips were shown. You can read full summaries of each at /Film, io9 and SCI FI Wire.
- Favreau on the challenges of a making the sequel: "We wanted to make sure we got something together as a thank-you to all of you, and you’re the people we wanted to show this stuff to first," Favreau said. "We wanted to add characters, but not too many. To maintain the same tone and dynamic between the characters that you love while adding people that would further move us towards the eventual Avengers film that’s coming."
- Cheadle on stepping into the role: "I tried to do my performance based on what the script dictated," he explained. "That was something we obviously had to deal with, and I think we do it in kind of an elegant way in the movie. But I just tried to make it my own, but of course being the vampire that I am, I tried to siphon everything that I could off of his [Terrence Howard] performance."
- Speaking of "The Avengers", Favreau says its too early to think about him possibly directing: "I’ve still got a year to go on this one. But they’re getting ready to make Thor with Kenneth Branagh, and I’m watching the stuff come together…So I’ve been looking at some of the prep work and the artwork, and it’s looking really fantastic…What’s fortunate, though, is that it doesn’t shoot until we’re done with Iron Man 2, so hopefully the movies will continue to cross-pollinate with one another and inform one another, and I’m looking forward to being involved in that project in some way."
In a group interview, Favreau said "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan" and "The Empire Strikes Back" stand as the best examples of making a great sequel:
"There were so many others that didn’t feel as good as the first, but for those two, what we found was that it really gave room to explore the characters," Favreau said in a group interview. "The villain plotlines were very simple, but the stakes were very high. The less you get bogged down in complexity, the more you could really let the audience enjoy what they really like, which are the relationships. You go from Alien to Aliens, and then you want to show them the characters that they’ve invested in and how they’ve changed and change those dynamics by introducing new characters. Don’t just add to the action but throw the relationship into a little bit of a curveball."
Here’s some of what Favreau had to say about the film’s story:
"We’re dealing with an arms race," Favreau continued. "That’s what Iron Man has always been. The thing about an arms race is, when you stop, the world doesn’t. You have windows of opportunity to change the world in good ways while all the bad forces are paralyzed. What happens when those other superpowers emerge? It changes your tactics. Iron Man is dealing with as much as he can based on saying, ‘I am Iron Man.’ And what that has meant is to keep the world at bay with that new technology and who he was and how that changes now with the emergence of Mickey."
More from Favreau in an interview with IGN below.
And rounding out the coverage for "Iron Man 2" (in theaters on May 7, 2010), check out this interview with Sam Rockwell (Justin Hammer).
SDCC ’09: Tron Legacy Teaser/Concept Trailer Released
In addition to the title reveal and logo for "Tron Legacy" (shown above via AICN), the teaser/concept trailer shown during last year’s Comic-Con has been officially released online. The test footage was shot by director Joseph Kosinski to prove his vision of the film to Disney. Just to note, none of this will be in the actual film (which is still dated TBA 2010). Watch it below. For impressions of the panel, head on over to ComingSoon.net, Collider and FirstShowing, io9, SCI FI Wire and /Film (and here).
Flynn’s Arcade (re-created at Comic-Con)
New Light Cycle Reveal
Concept Art [more at io9]
SDCC ’09: Wanted 2 Starts Shooting in Eight Weeks
The script for "Wanted 2" is complete and Mark Millar (who wrote the graphic novel) says the film will begin shooting in eight weeks. Millar revealed the news in an interview with Superhero Hype! and added that the sequel would revolve around the international group of assassins from issues 4 and 5 of his graphic novel. Timur Bekmambetov will return to direct and he spoke [SPOILERS AHEAD] about how Angelina Jolie’s character could return:
We are working hard to wake her up. She was deadly wounded. The bullet’s still there (in her head), and now it’s a process of how to wake her up. There has to be a reason for that. We survive if we have a reason to live. She decided [to shoot herself], it’s her decision. And now we are trying to figure out what’s the motivation for her to resurrect. It’s happening. I think we will make it happen.
SDCC ’09: Gary Oldman Says Next Batman Starts Shooting in 2010
During the panel for WB’s "The Book of Eli" Gary Oldman, who played Commissioner Gordon in "The Dark Knight", said that the next film in the series will begin shooting next year, with a release expected shortly thereafter: “The next batman is next year, so I think it is two years away. But you didn’t hear it from me.” Oldman later backtracked a bit on his comments in an interview with AICN, claiming: “well, I’m sure they want to do another one… it might 2 or 3 years…”
SDCC ’09: The Hobbit Script Due in Three Weeks + LOTR Blu-ray News
Peter Jackson revealed that the first draft of the script for "The Hobbit" is just three weeks away from being delivered to the studio. Jackson also debunked rumors surrounding casting, explaining that the films aren’t even officially green lit yet and they can’t begin the casting process until there is a budget and schedule in place. Plans are still in place for the first ‘Hobbit’ to hit theaters in December 2011 followed by its sequel in December 2012. In other news, Jackson confirmed that the first Blu-ray releases of the "LOTR" films will be the theatrical versions, with the extended version — perhaps including new bonus content — to follow the following year. Read more of Jackson’s thoughts on other films, including "The Lovely Bones", at the source links.
SDCC ’09: Marvel’s Kevin Feige Talks The Avengers Lineup, Thor and Captain America
We’re still a ways out before "The Avengers" gears into production, but Marvel is already beginning to shore up who they expect to be part of the film’s line-up:
Do you know what heroes are we going to be putting in The Avengers? How close are you to discovering who the core characters are?
Kevin Feige: I think we know. I think it’s going to be Iron Man and Thor, Captain America and Nick Fury. I think it’s safe to assume that there will be some members of the Hulk universe in the film as well. In terms of the additional I think Black Widow, sure. The SHIELD organization for sure. What’s exciting, for me, about The Avengers movie is seeing those four characters interact with each other. I think anywhere from the first issues of The Avengers to Civil War the dynamic between Steve Rogers and Tony Stark is just awesome, it’s fascinating. It brings out sides in others that won’t be brought out in the other franchises. Going forward with the mix is a whole other thing, I think it will be cool. So to pile on another 15 or 10, frankly more than four would be too many.
Feige also discussed more casting announcements for "Thor", saying that they’re "closing in on Odins and Heimdals and the Warriors Three," for the film, which begins filming in January. The next film expected to begin production after "Thor" is "The First Avenger: Captain America" but Feige says he doesn’t expect an announcement on who’ll play Captain America for "a few months." And finally, Feige described why they settled on Chris Hemsworth to play Thor:
"You know what, it’s one of those rare things that doesn’t happen often, but people like me always say it, so it probably sounds cliche," Feige said. "We auditioned a lot of people. We did a lot of screen tests. We put a lot of people on video, and one guy just kept popping out, and it was Chris. You realize, regardless of what he’s saying or how he’s saying it, you’re engaged with him. It’s that movie-star quality which I think he has, and, thankfully, looks like Thor, which is a good combination."
SDCC ’09: Zemeckis Wont’ Confirm Or Deny Roger Rabbit Rumors
During the ‘Christmas Carol’ portion of Disney’s 3-D panel, director Robert Zemeckis was asked to respond to rumors surrounding a possible sequel to "Who Framed Roger Rabbit". Zemeckis at first dodged the question, saying only that he could “neither confirm or deny" the rumors. But upon being pressed further, Zemeckis offered:
“I will tell you this, if that ever does happen, the 2D characters from the original movie will remain 2D. They will not be dimensionalized. Not to say there wont be 3D [in the movie].”
In an earlier interview with AICN, Zemeckis spoke about how committed he was to advancing performance capture, and seemed to suggest it was only a matter of time before we’d see a sequel to ‘Roger Rabbit’:
"I’m really committed to getting this art form [performance capture] off of the ground, but of course I would and I’m never going to say never to anything, but right now though I really want to make sure that we get this out there so that younger filmmakers have these absolutely breathtaking tools that they can use."
Bob Hoskins is also keen on making a return to the property, and confirmed that it’s been on his and Robert’s mind lately:
AICN: Did you have any discussions with him about returning as Eddie Valiant?
Hoskins: Oh yes, he always has them with me. He loves Eddie Valiant and he would love to do it. We talk about it and it’s something we are thinking about.
For coverage and impressions of Zemeckis’ upcoming 3-D performance-capture film "A Christmas Carol", head on over to /Film.
SDCC ’09: Alice in Wonderland Teaser Trailer
The teaser trailer for Tim Burton’s 3-D "Alice in Wonderland" was released during Comic-Con, watch it below.
During the Q&A session with Burton, he revealed that the film is based not just off of Lewis Caroll’s books, but really "all of his material," including his poem "Jaberwocky". Also revealed during the panel was that Stephen Fry is the voice of Cheshire the Cat. For more complete impressions of the panel, head on over to First Showing, SCI FI Wire, /Film, ComingSoon and Collider.
Sam Raimi Will Direct World of Warcraft
Sam Raimi will direct and supervise the development of a film adaptation of the hit video game "World of Warcraft", Variety and AICN report. Raimi will move into development of the project as soon as he completes work on "Spider-Man 4". “At its core, ‘Warcraft’ is a fantastic, action-packed story,” Raimi said in a statement.
Alice in Wonderland
Posters [more at SCI FI Wire]
Aliens in the Attic [more at IGN]
A Nightmare on Elm Street
First look at Jackie Earle Haley as Freddy Krueger [MySpace]
U.S. Poster [IGN]
Astro Boy [Wired]
The Cabin in the Woods
U.S. Posters [one more at ComingSoon]
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Unmasked Storm Shadow (played by Byung-hun Lee) [JoBlo]
How to Train Your Dragon
Concept art by art director Pierre-Olivier Vincent [/Film]
Jennifer’s Body [CinemaBlend]
U.S. Poster [MTV]
Prince of Persia
U.S. Poster [/Film]
First look at Jake Gyllenhaal as Prince Dastan [EW]
The Twilight Saga: New Moon
Aliens in the Attic
Clip: "The Revenge"
Kristen Bell discusses her role
The Book of Eli
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Two new clips [Yahoo! Movies]
Footage of the Green Hornet’s Black Beauty
Green Lantern: First Flight
Watch the first four minutes
Hot Tub Time Machine
Red band trailer
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus
The Time Traveler’s Wife
San Diego Comic-Con Zombie Walk
- SDCC ’09: Samuel L. Jackson and Charlize Theron are in talks to cameo in the animated feature "Astro Boy". Theron’s role is unknown, but Jackson is expected to have a special cameo as a robot. [ComingSoon]
- SDCC ’09: Nicolas Cage is in talks with Columbia Pictures to play a villain in "Green Hornet". Star and co-writer Seth Rogen talked about the possible addition at Comic-Con: “It’s not 100% closed yet by any means, but we’ve been talking to him and he seems enthusiastic and we’re great fans of his obviously, so it’s exciting that it could possibly happen. He would be one of the villains so that’s all I can say.” [Variety and ComingSoon]
- Zach Galifianakis, who was expected to star in the sci-fi family comedy "Man-Witch", says that he’s putting the project on hold for now. [SCI FI Wire]
- Lucas Cruikshank and Jaime King are attached to star in "Emo Boy", Vanguard Films’ live-action adaptation of the Stephen Emond graphic novels. [THR]
- SDCC ’09: "Jonah Hex" director Jimmy Hayward explains his comic book adaptation as a mixture of Spaghetti Western and action, with a dose of supernatural elements. [io9–more impressions at SCI FI Wire]
- SDCC ’09: Disney’s head of production Oren Aviv has revealed that plans are for filming on "Pirates of the Caribbean 4" to begin next year with a release as early as 2011. [ComingSoon]
- SDCC ’09: Panel impressions for "Legion". [/Film]
- SDCC ’09: Director Mathew Vaughn says that they’re still shooting for a first quarter 2010 release for "Kick-Ass", but a distributor is not yet in place. Panel impressions can be found at /Film, io9, SCI FI Wire and Superhero Hype!.
- SDCC ’09: The makers of "A Nightmare on Elm Street" say the film is not an origin story: "We’re creating our own mythology based on Wes Craven’s story. There’s a little bit of it, but I wouldn’t say we’re bogged down in it."…
- …Also, the original Freddy (Robert Englund) will not be making a cameo. [/Film]
- Paul W.S. Anderson is returning to direct "Resident Evil: Afterlife" and the director says the film will be released in 3-D and could be the start of a new trilogy. [Shock Till You Drop]
- SDCC ’09: The sci-fi film "Gamer" has a game within the movie described as a "fetishistic ‘society’ game," according to writer/directors Brian Taylor and Mark Neveldine. [io9]
- SDCC ’09: Tim Burton has confirmed that "Dark Shadows" will be his next project. The film is based on the classic 1966-1971 supernatural TV show by Dan Curtis. Johnny Depp will star. [ComingSoon–originally reported by Collider]
- SDCC ’09: "Legion" director and star Paul Bettany have already planned their next film. The two will reunited for "Priest", which will be based on the TokyoPop Korean manga. [SCI FI Wire]
- SDCC ’09: About 15 minutes of footage from the Diablo Cody-scripted dark horror comedy "Jennifer’s Body", starring Megan Fox, was screened during Comic-Con. Check out some impressions of the footage at /Film and io9.
- SDCC ’09: Although the enemy is different in MGM’s remake of "Red Dawn", star Adrianne Palicki (Toni) says that the film will still recapture famous scenes from the original. [SCI FI Wire]
- SDCC ’09: During the panel for "The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus" director Terry Gilliam discussed how he made the decision to use other actors to finish the work of the late Heath Ledger: "I think it works with Johnny [Depp], Colin [Farrell] and Jude [Law] taking over. It created so many ways of looking at his character, you know? His voice changed and that sort of thing, so he could be many things, and that seems to help." [SCI FI Wire]
- SDCC ’09: A red band trailer and two clips were shown at the panel for "Zombieland". Read some impressions at io9 and /Film and check out some interviews with the cast at Cinematical.
- SDCC ’09: Director Zack Snyder re-iterated his interest in directing a "300" sequel, and has read some of Miller’s recently completed draft of the graphic novel: "I’ve seen a little teeny bit of it, and it’s, I’m like, ‘OK. Wow.’ It kind of, yeah. It’s cool. It’s smart. He did a smart thing." [SCI FI Wire]
- SDCC ’09: "2012" director Roland Emmerich says that the film will be his last disaster movie. [io9]
- SDCC: ’09: Oscar-nominated writer Robert Rodat will script Roland Emmerich’s adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s sci-fi novel "Foundation". [ComingSoon]
- SDCC: ’09: 10 Minutes of Spike Jonze’s "Where The Wild Things Are" was screened during the film’s panel. Check out some impressions of the footage at /Film, Collider, SCI FI Wire and ComingSoon.net.
- SDCC: ’09: "Where The Wild Things Are" and "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs" will both be released in IMAX. [IMAX News]
- SDCC: ’09: James Cameron revealed that his next project after "Avatar" may be "Battle Angel Alita": "Battle Angel’s definitely something that I still love, and that’s something we’re looking at very seriously." [SCI FI Wire]
- SDCC: ’09: Robert Pattinson explains how filmmakers came up with a way to include his character Edward in the film: "It’s Edward’s voice in the book, so I guess it would probably look pretty cheesy if it were just my voice," Pattinson told reporters. "They’ve done these hallucinations, kind of semi-visible apparitions." [SCI FI Wire–more impressions at io9 (here and here) and SCI FI Wire (here and here).
- SDCC: ’09: If offered, "District 9" director Neill Blomkamp says he would likely pass on the opportunity to direct a "Halo" film. [/Film]
- SDCC: ’09: Speaking of "District 9", the film was screened in its entirety and it looks like it may be one of the year’s best: Collider: "…the quick info is that it’s f***ing great…suffice it to say it’s unlike anything I’ve seen and you will not believe what they managed to do with $30 million dollars. ComingSoon: "I have to tell you this film was awesome. Every once in a while a great sci-fi film comes along that turns the genre on its a head. This felt like one of those films."…
- …Check out an interview with Blomkamp at /Film. And Blomkamp says he has plans to follow-up "District 9" with another sci-fi film: "It’s totally original, it’s my own story…It’s set on another planet, but it’s cool. It’s violent, very violent, and very unique hopefully. We’ll see." [/Film]
- Convergence Entertainment has closed deals to develop live-action features based on two properties: "Gungrave" and "Lone Wolf". [Variety]
- Producer Gal Anne Hurd’s Valhalla Motion Pictures ("The Incredible Hulk") and Platinum Studios have tapped Ryuhei Kitamura to direct and Holly Brix to write a live-action adaptation of Top Cow’s comic book "The Magdalena". [Variety]
- Len Wiseman has been signed to develop and direct a film adaptation of the graphic novel "Shrapnel": "I am really drawn to the reluctant-hero story," Wiseman said. [THR]
- The live-action "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" re-launch has a writer. John Fusco has been hired to pen the script for the film which is being planned as an origin story for release in 2011. [Variety]
- Eric Bana, star of the upcoming "The Time Traveler’s Wife", talks about how he tried to make the character (Henry DeTamble) his own without irritating fans of the Audrey Niffenegger novel. [SCI FI Wire]
- In addition to voicing the alien Paul in the upcoming sci-fi comedy "Paul", Seth Rogen will also be doing motion capture work. [Collider]
- "Watchmen" producer Lloyd Levin has acquired the screen rights to Terry Moore’s comic book series "Echo". [Variety]
- Atlas Entertainment’s Charles Roven, Richard Suckle and Steve Alexander have acquired the rights to a live-action film based on "Voltron". Atlas has an overall production deal with Sony, but no distributor has been lined up for the project yet. [Risky Biz Blog]
- The newly formed production company Next Films is developing "Black Sabbath", a horror movie franchise. [THR]
- Matthew Gratzner will direct an adaptation of the ’70s TV series "UFO" from a script penned by Ryan Guadet and Joseph Kanarek. The film will mark Gratzner’s directorial debut. [Variety]
- Sony Pictures have picked up the rights to the prequel book "Kong: King of Skull Island". The film will be based on a script by Andy Briggs and will be filmed using motion-capture technology. [Variety]
Iron Man 2 [Video Game]
Nobody Watches the Watchmen
Rorschach meets his maker — Alan Moore!
- SEGA has announced that comic book author Matt Fraction will be writing an all-new story for the video game based on Jon Favreau’s "Iron Man 2". The game will be available on the Xbox 360, PS3, PSP, Wii and DS. [CBR]
- In other gaming news, Warner Bros. Interactive has confirmed that they are making a video game based on the big-screen adaptation of "Where The Wild Things Are".The game will be released on the Wii, PS3, Xbox 360 and DS this November. [Digital Spy]
- Here’s a bit of what’s in store for the Wonder Woman comics, according to writer Gail Simone: "Wonder Woman is going to renounce the gods and declare that she is no longer an Amazon. We’re going to see her as more of a superhero than she’s been in quite some time." That’ll take place in the new storyline "Warkiller". [io9]