Sci-Fi Saturday: Dark Knight, Punisher, GI Joe, Justice League, X-Files, Watchmen, Lost, BSG, Jericho + more

Sci-Fi Saturday brings news on a troublesome scene in The Dark Knight, problems with Justice League movie, a delay for the Punisher movie, and an explanation for no ‘mythology’ in the X-files move. But there’s lots of good stuff too, like lots of pictures (including Wolfman and Watchmen), more videos, possible new life for Jericho, a post BSG future for Tricia Helfer and more.

MOVIE NEWS

Ledger’s The Dark Knight Scenes Remain Intact?
[SPOILER]
Earlier in the week Cinema Blend reported that Warner Brothers were considering cutting a scene from "The Dark Knight" involving the late Heath Ledger’s Joker in a body bag pretending to be dead after it got negative reactions in test screenings. However, MovieHole.net cites an annonymous source saying nothing of Ledger’s performance will be cut from the movie. Speaking of those secret screenings, ComicBookMovie already has an early glowing review. Plus the viral campaign has released footage of Maggie Gylenhaal as Rachel Dawes (below), more updates at SuperHeroHype. "The Dark Knight" hits theaters on July 18.

Punisher: War Zone Delayed
"Punisher: War Zone" director Lexi Alexander revealed on her blog that the film has been pushed back from September to December 5th. Lexi also reported on a recent studio screening, saying it "went well and, although I’ll probably have to compromise on a few minor notes, it’s not nearly as bad as some of my filmmaker friends predicted it would be. I guess I got away with an actual okay studio experience (knocking on wood since it’s not quite over yet).” For more of the director’s thoughts, including her comments on Ray Stevenson, who plays Frank Castle, head here.

Ray Park on "G.I. Joe"
Ray Park (aka Darth Maul) told Geekscape! that he was determined to snag the role of Snake Eyes in the upcoming "G.I. Joe" for himself. "One of the reasons I always wanted to play Snake Eyes is because I played as him when I was a kid. Star Wars fans and the fans I’ve met at conventions have said ‘You’d be the best Snake Eyes ever if they did a GI Joe movie!’ So when I heard they were actually going to do it I did everything possible to try and get in a meeting or try and get an audition."  Park also assured fans that they’re going to love the movie: "Oh definitely. Yeah, definitely. You should be big time excited. I’m excited and I’m on set. The sets are unbelievable! The costumes, the wardrobe, the look is unbelievable and it’s such a nice, fun set to be on." G.I. Joe hits theaters on August 7, 2009.


Park…from Sith to Snake

Justice League Film Halted Again
Another week, yet another problem with the "Justice League" movie. Producer Barry Osborne told the New Zealand Dominion Post the film is on hold and that director George Miller is now looking to move production to New Zealand. If that fails, Osborne says they have two choices: "scale back the movie in some substantial way or you find another place to do the movie that you can do for the budget." In other "Justice League" news, "Juno" director Jason Reitman revealed on "The Howard Stern Show" that he turned down an offer to direct the film, saying the script was "fine" but he didn’t want to do a movie "not as good as X-Men" and prefers to do indie films.

Carter and Spotnitz Talk X-Files
Chris Carter and Frank Spotnitz explained to IGN why the "X Files" sequel is going to be a ‘standalone’: "We knew we wanted to do something that wasn’t a mythology episode. We’d kind of wrapped up the mythology, to a large extent, in the series. So I think, especially coming back a number of years later, the best thing to do would be to reintroduce The X-Files to its core audience, but also maybe introduce it to a lot of people who haven’t had a chance to see it before." They didn’t offer spoilers, beyond saying "It’s scary. It’s about Mulder and Scully, very much. It’s about them and their relationship and who they are and it’s a personal and emotional movie too, in a way that the series rarely could be, because we’re not doing 24 episodes – we’re just doing this one standalone movie."


Mulder and Scully together again…this time it’s personal

Star Wars Beats Lord of the Rings
Spike TV’s airing of Star Wars Episodes 1 through 3 last weekend out-rated the "Lord of the Rings" telecast on TNT. The average audience of all three "Star Wars" was 3.5 million viewers vs. the 2.7 million average for the "Lord of the Rings" movies. The highest rated movie was "Revenge of the Sith" which scored 4.2 million viewers. The "Star Wars" event on Spike TV continues this evening with the airing of "Empire Strikes Back", followed by "The Return of the Jedi" on Sunday night. Both movies begin airing at 8:00 p.m.

NEW IMAGES

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (MAD Magazine)

Untitled X-Files Sequel

The Spirit

Hancock

Iron Man (7-11 Slurpee Cups, details here)

The Wolf Man (set photos, more here)

Watchmen (more here)

Speed Racer (more here)

NEW VIDEOS

Pathology (Internet Spot)

Iron Man

Speed Racer (behind-the-scenes clip)

CASTING BITES

  • MGM has bought the rights to "Bobism", a SF comedy script about a shy collegian who discovers that life in 1,000 years will be based on his blog. [Variety]
  • "The Sword and the Sorcerer" sequel looks to be moving forward. Twitch reports that Lee Horsley will be returning and will be joined by Christopher Lambert, Kevin Sorbo and Victoria Maurette.
  • Universal Pictures is set to produce "Earth vs. Moon" from "Zombieland" writers Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese. Plot details are scarce, but the story is described as a space-set epic. [THR]
  • Rose McGowan told MTV that she’s still ‘Barbarella’ and that production is moving forward on the remake from "Grindhouse" director Robert Rodriguez. [MTV]
  • LatinoReview is reporting that an offer has been sent to Jake Gyllenhaal for the title role in "Prince of Persia: Sands of Time". Asked for comment, Disney responded with "you’ll see soon enough".
  • British actor Scott Adkins has landed the role of Weapon 11 in "X-Men Origins: Wolverine".
  • Brandon Routh may star as the lead in the supernatural "Dylan Dog" comic book adaptation, with Kevin Munroe set to direct. [Bloody-Disgusting]
  • "The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian" character guide is available to view at Moviefone.
  • Marvel has launched a new production blog for "Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li" and one of the updates reveals new cast: Moon Bloodgood as Maya, Pei Peei Cheng will play Zhilan and Edmund Chen will play Huang.
  • The soundtrack for "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" has been listed on Amazon, and the title tracks reveal some tiny spoilers.
  • Universal has launched Hetfet.org, a viral website for the upcoming film "Hellboy II: Curse of the Golden Army".
  • The production company for "Babylon A.D." (starring Vin Diesel) denied rumors the film had a 2 hours 40 minutes version that had 70 minutes cut from it. Apparently a joke made by the director got taken seriously.
  • George Lucas is suing a British prop designer over rights to the imperial storm trooper costumers from the "Star Wars" films. [SCI FI Wire]
  • Author Michael Chabon’s unused "Spider-Man 2" script has found its way online. You can download it here.


Yah…she’ll do for Barbarella

TV NEWS

Comcast to save Jericho?
According to a report in the New York Times, "Jericho’s" production arm CBS Paramount Network Television has held talks with the cable provider Comcast about keeping the canceled CBS series alive. The deal would allow CBS to keep the show on the air, but defer some of the cost of the show to Comcast in exchange for first broadcast rights to its 24 million subscribers. A similar deal has been struck with NBC and DirectTV for "Friday Night Lights."

"Lost" Season Four Expands to 14 Hours
Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse have come to terms with ABC over adding an additional hour of "Lost." As reported by E! Online’s Kristin, the extra hour will be used for the show’s 4th season finale, which will now air three hours over two nights.  The first hour will air May 15th at 10:00 p.m., with the final two hours to air on May 29, beginning at 9:00 p.m..  "Lost" returns with the first of five new episodes on April 24 in its new timeslot, Thursday’s at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Galactica Gets Big Ratings + Helfer Inks TV Deal
The fourth season premiere of "Battlestar Galactica" bounced back from a poor season three finale performance, notching 2.14M viewers and a 1.1 rating among adults 18-49. That’s up 41 and 38 percent, respectively from the season three finale. Time will tell if the audience will stick around for the show’s final season, but this is a respectable start. In other BSG news, actress Tricia Helfer who plays Six in the series, has inked a FOX TV deal.


Galactica may be gone, but Helfer will be back

Gay Character on Pushing Daisies Revealed
[SPOILERS] Bryan Fuller, creator of ABC’s "Pushing Daisies", told AfterElton that in upcoming episodes one character will be outed. The character will be the coroner, played by Sy Richardson. "We were going to slowly expand his character and kind of reveal that he has a little crush on Emerson, Fuller, who himself is openly gay, said. "I didn’t want to just do another, like, pretty gay person. I thought it would be interesting to have an older character be gay." Click here for the rest of the interview.

Early review of Stargate Continuum
GateWorld editors recently attended a screening of the upcoming DVD movie "Stargate Continuum", and give it high praise, "We walked away as reborn ‘Stargate’ fans."GateWorld owner Darren Sumner was particularly amazed by the film, calling it "the best movie or episode he has seen in years, easily in the top five for all 12 years of ‘Stargate’ history". The film features the return of Richard Dean Anderson and Gateworld notes "Hardcore fans of the show will appreciate the fine-toothed attention to detail (in both story and a decade of character development), and the extra effort exerted to bring almost a dozen well-known characters from SG-1 back for one more romp."

TV BITES

  • Actress Nicole de Boer ("Deep Space Nine", "Dead Zone") has been cast in an upcoming season five episode of "Stargate Atlantis". [Joseph Mallozzi]
  • According to TV Guide’s Michael Ausielo, money and their inability to make movies while tied up with the series, were the reasons why "Smallville" co-creators Al Gough and Miles Millar wont return for the 8th season.
  • Jewel Staite, who played Kalyee on the Fox series "Firefly", told convention goers in Australia that a special edition Blu-ray release of the short-lived series is coming soon. [TV Guide]
  • For a limited time, Amazon.com is offering free downloads of four "Stargate SG-1" episodes. The episodes are "The Torment of Tantalus", "Window of Opportunity", "Lost City, Part 1" and "Lost City, Part 2".
  • Bobby Cannavale ("Third Watch") will play the title role in ABC’s comedy pilot Cupid, [THR]
  • "Pushing Daisies" begins airing on ITV 1 in the UK this evening. [ITV]
  • The complete DVD specs for the second "Futurama" movie "The Beast with a Billion Backs" have been released.
  • The third season of "Venture Bros." begins June 1st on AdultSwim.
  • "Lost" executive producer Jeff Pinker has been tapped to run J.J. Abrams’ Fox SF drama "Fringe". [THR]


deBoer…headed to the Atlantis Galaxy

 

SCI-FI RATINGS

Top 10 SF&F Broadcast Shows HH Rating/Share
1) Lost 7.0/11
2) Medium 6.4/11
3) Eli Stone 4.7/8
4) New Amsterdam 4.5/7
5) Jericho 3.5/6
6) Smallville 2.3/4
7) Reaper 1.9/3


3/17/2008 to
3/23/2008
– Source: Nielsen Media Research

Top 10 SF&F Syndicated Shows Rating
NOT AVAILABLE THIS WEEK  
   
   
   


3/17/2008 to
3/23/2008
– Source: Nielsen Galaxy Report via SCI FI Wire

Top 10 SCI FI CHANNEL Shows Rating
1) Ghost Hunters 1.4
2) Rock Monster 1.3
3) ECW 1.3
4) Earthstorm 1.1
5) Destination Truth 1.1
6) Atomic Twister 1.0
7) Beyond Loch Ness 1.0
8) Leprechaun 3 0.9
9) Storm of the Century, Part 3 0.9
10)
Scorcher
0.9


3/17/2008 to
3/23/2008
– Source: Nielsen Galaxy Report via SCI FI Wire

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I’m glad they won’t be cutting any of Heath’s performance from the movie. I think that’s the last thing he would have wanted.

Great to her Nicole’s getting more work after Dead Zone’s demise.

Another great roundup, Rosario! :)

Mmmm Barbarella.

And I’m looking forward to Iron Man.

Jason

Firefly on Blu-ray? That’s just awesome.

boJac

I’m glad the Justice League movie is running into trouble. I really, really don’t want to see it made.

I also can’t wait until The Dark Knight comes out.

*Holds for innapropriate “Batman is gay” response*

brant

Gay Character on Pushing Daisies Revealed
[SPOILERS] Bryan Fuller, creator of ABC’s “Pushing Daisies”, told AfterElton that in upcoming episodes one character will be outed. The character will be the coroner, played by Sy Richardson. “We were going to slowly expand his character and kind of reveal that he has a little crush on Emerson, Fuller, who himself is openly gay, said. “I didn’t want to just do another, like, pretty gay person. I thought it would be interesting to have an older character be gay.” Click here for the rest of the interview

Does this guy have a one track mind or what? Ok Fuller, I think we got it by now. Gay,Gay,Gay—move on already

Boborci

So curious about R-Rated Watchmen…

[The] TOS Purist aka The Purolator

GAH why is the Justice League movie delayed AGAIN?!? Honestly, Hollywood sure can crank out trash pretty fast, but when it comes to a movie that would actually be COOL if done right, they plod along like they’ve got their feet stuck in molasses.

I can’t wait to see “Wolfman,” though…it’ll be awesome to see a movie done with the modern level of special effects while having NO CG in it at all!! It’ll be a great example of just how awesome photographic effects are, and how far they’ve come.

#7 — Justice League seems to be hitting nothing but snags. The writers strike preventing much-needed script rewrites, the death of their costume designer (Marit Allen), the search for a new filming location… just to name a few. Any more problems and this movie may go the way of Terry Gilliam’s Man Who Killed Don Quixote.

The Angry Klingon

Looking forward to continuum…I enjoyed Ark of Truth. Whats with teh Scientologists advertising here? It wont help Cruise get a part in the movie lol.

Cranston

#6 Boborci — don’t you have a wee bit of inside info on that?

Hurm.

Boborci

10. Cranston – April 13, 2008
#6 Boborci — don’t you have a wee bit of inside info on that?

Hurm.

A: true, but I mean I’m curious to see how a subtly ironic R rated superhero movie fares in the market. I have no inside info on that question.

So much good stuff.

the Dark Knight, X-Files Deuce, GI Jones ;)

I cannot wait.

boborci – where ya been? take a breather, dude. chillax.

Mr Lerpa

I’ve got to say, Ironman is looking amazing…. looking forward to tht movie a lot!

Cranston

#11 – Ah, I see. I agree — I wonder a lot about the public reaction to this — not only the rating issue, but the degree to which people’s expectations of “super hero movies” will (or won’t) be satisfied.

I’m especially thinking of the ending. That is, depending on how closely the filmmakers kept to Moore’s ending … but I won’t press you for details there. :)

(But if you wanted to make even a cryptic, veiled comment about such things, I wouldn’t try to stop you).

Anyway, really looking forward to the movie.

demon barber of starfleet

I certainly hope they do NOT cut anything of Heath’s from the movie. Though even if they haven’t cut it yet, they might before the release. For example, I saw reviews of early screenings of Sweeney Todd that included critiques on things that were most definitely not in the final theatrical version of the film, presumably cut at the last minute.

…so let’s hope they don’t do that with The Dark Knight. Heath wouldn’t want that.

Paul Martin

Ahhhhhh Gillian Anderson…………………… :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)

Garovorkin

Heath Ledger, It would be ironic and sad if the Joker turned out to be his best acting job of all, Ledger was very good actor and he died way to young as so many have in Hollywood over the years. In his case imagine what might have been and imagine what will never be be. Its just not fair, not at all.

Holger

I’d strongly prefer a mythology-based X-files movie. I always thought that the mytharc TV episodes were the strongest.

Garovorkin

I was fan of the X files until Chris Carter and fox basically kept ti on the air way past it’s shelf life. The first 5 seasons great , the rest forgettable. X files Fight for the Future was little more then a television episode masquerading as a big budget movie. It was not very good, maybe being a continuation of the series hurt it , I don’t know. I don’t have any pressing desire to see X files 2.and i think time has definitely passed this franchise by. By the way other X files Chris Carter has not had a lot of success beyond X files, Does anyone remember, Strange Luck,Harsh Realms,The Lone Gunmen. Millennium was a near miss. Carter would have been better of to have ended the series a 5 years while it was at the top of it’s game and then do the movies. The way they ended up handling it, they may haved amaged the longterm viability of the X files franchise.

weeharry

boborci?

how close are trek XI and watchmen’s release dates? i’ve heard it said that the new wolverine is trek’s main ‘oppsition’ upon release, but i must admit that after new trek this is, by a considerable distance, my most anticipated forthcoming movie.

watchmen is quite simply IMO, the best comic book i have ever read – as a child i grew up on 2000AD with the long continuing story arcs of judge dredd, strontium dog etc. but watchmen was the first that i read that could be defined as a ‘novel’. (I’m sure it wasn’t the first ever, but the first that i became aware of). I continue to rank watchmen now some 20 years hence as one of my favourite novels – the only comic book to which i afford that honour. i really hope they don’t screw it up (i mentioned dredd earlier – if ever there was a chance wasted that was it – i doubt any studio would touch that with a barge pole since sly stallone butchered it)

brady

I really cant understand how shows with only a couple million viewers i.e smallville, BSG, can be on for multiple seasons. Yet, a show like Jericho which averaged between 6 and 10 million can be considered poor ratings? And if thats the case, why a CW or sci-fi doesn’t snap it up? It would be there highest rated show.

Lord Garth, Formerly of Izar

Watchmen Watchmen Watchmen !!!!!!!!!!!!

SPB

FUN QUESTION FOR BOB ORCI…

It’s a given I suppose that you’ll be inundated with TREK XI questions now that your name has popped up again on these boards, so I’m gonna go a different route…

If you had a chance to script a particular superhero film, who would you choose to tackle and why?

Paul B.

Is it just me, or do the previews of “Speed Racer” look just about as horrible as anything ever done on film? I loved SR as a kid, and I still have the urge to grab every Mach 5 toy I see, but this film looks terrible! (Or am I alone on this?)

On a more optimistic note, I’m eagerly awaiting the new X-Files film, and I was only a borderline viewer for the show. Same for Stargate: I’ve gradually grown to like the shows after hating the original movie, and I have more fun watching any random hour of SG: Atlantis than watching any Trek show since the original. I’m looking forward to the SG movies immensely.

Dr. Image

So… there’s a Scientology banner on the site now.
NO comment.

Jack from Lost is Racer X?
Interesting. What next??

Garovorkin

#24 No your not alone the speed racer movie looks and sounds really bad,it would be nice if Hollywood would start doing original productions with original material again instead of recycling old tv shows. Speed racer in the cartoon series was a one dimensional character and it looks like in the movie he has even less dimension. It looks like a cartoon masquerading as a big budget film.

Hat Rick

Tricia Helfer — niiiice pic….

Garovorkin

Tricia, Rose and Nicole a really gorgeous trio. Rose McGowan would make a truly spectacular and beautiful Barberella. I really want that bit of casting to take place and a movie about Barbarella is a priority number one must see movie on my list. oh yeah.

#21 I always wondered the same thing, good point. Anthony, do you have any insights on why, how, who etc on this topic?

colonyearth

21 – brady,

Because of two reasons: 1) Smallville is on a small and struggling network (that even recently went through a major merger) and is its highest rated show, 2) Stargate is on a cable network and cable’s ratings work differently than free-aired network ratings. Could Sci-Fi pick up Jericho? Yes, but they won’t. They’ve only saved one show before and that was the terrible POS called Andromeda. And that “save” was only for one season so the show-runners could end it.

There have been numerous chances for Sci-Fi to save great shows, but every time they’ve passed. CW could as well, but if you look at Smallville and their other shows, they’re “smaller” in their approach. Jericho might well be a bit out of their budget range, especially when you consider that after Smallville’s next and final season, Paramount is talking about pulling out of the CW, leaving WB holding the bag. That network’s entire future hangs in the balance.

CE

Hat Rick

About Speed Racer: I was never into it. Never saw it on TV. Hardly knew it existed except for isolated references. The movie’s style, however, strikes me as kind of neat, and here’s why: It’s obviously intended to invoke the garish colors of a cartoon, and for good reason, since the franchise started out as one. But instead of truly bizarre cartoonishness in the tradition of the Flintstones live-action movies (the first one starring John Goodman as Fred Flintstone), we have in this Speed Racer movie a slightly tone-down version of the world given to us in the animation. In other words, instead of thinking of this movie as a over-bright version of reality, think of it as a toned-down version of the cartoon. Way toned down, if you compare it with the live-action Flintstones movies.

Who knows? It could be the surprise blockbuster sleeper hit of the decade. Stranger things have happened….

loengard

30 – colonyearth

Sci-Fi also “saved” Sliders but the plots went down hill fast after that save.

Garovorkin

#32 it would have been nice if the scif channel could have saved the show Odyseey 5.

boJac

Rose McGowan is WAY overrated.

FREAKAZOID

I am glad they are not going to change any of Heath Ledger’s film footage. To do so would be an insult. I can’t imagine any actor wanting a movie changed because of their own death.

Dierna

Squeee!!!! Nikkie’s gonna be on SGA!! And from that blog it looks like her characters gonna be reacurring since she’s a member of a SG team!! :D

MidMoElMarko

Does seem a shame that SciFi doesn’t pick up some of the good-but-dropped shows. Dropping “Dresden Files” while keeping low-overhead drek like “Ghost Hunters” ought to be a crime. Fox had the same short-sightedness when they dropped “Firefly” because it might actually cost them a few dollars…..and a LITTLE bit of marketing for the series wouldn’t have hurt either.

ll

#37 who can fathom the will or the stupidity of the scif channel, They could have had Firefly, Odessy5, Babylon 5 Crusade and other series. Waht they do instead by a dying series like the Outer Limits and Andromeda, rather then take a chance on good shows with potential. The Dresden Files was a very good series which was doing fairly well in the ratings and the did not pick it up? They would rather spend money on such loser shows like Flash Gordon and the Abysmal Pain killer Jane With the Dramatically challenged Christina Loken and the rest of the forgettable cast. But on the plus side or should I say minus side they cancel both of those tragic excuses for television series so Sci Fi Fridays got better not through addition but subtraction.

Garovorkin

Of G I Joe God I still cannot believe that they are doing a movie version of this piece of drek.GI joe has no purpose other then to seel toy to kids and they are actually making a movie. Hollywood has truly gone into creative Bankruptcy if they think that this travesty is a good Idea. Tell me does anybody else have a problem with what the slackbrains running the studios are trowling out to the audiences. Is most of this crap truly worth plunking down you 10 dollars for a ticket?

Garovorkin

#34 Disagree I think Rose Mcgowan is just the right actress for the part of Barbarella. I would not at all consider her to be over rated.