BREAKING NEWS: SPIDER MAN 4 HAS BEEN CANCELED BY SONY/COLUMBIA PICTURES. ENTIRE SERIES TO BE REBOOTED. READ ALL ABOUT THIS GAME CHANGING NEWS STORY HERE.
Happy Late 2010 Folks! I thought that I’d be able to ease into the new year with a light week where I’d be able to embrace a calm before the storm of labor that the new year was sure to bring. Hollywood can be so unaccommodating to one’s wishes! Business is hot in Tinsel Town and it’s not all good news (depending on how you look at it). There’s a lot to talk about, so let’s start off with the headline that brightened my week up…
The Green Lantern is finally set to take flight
We became privy to the knowledge that Green Lantern will finally begin principal photography in March thanks to Visual Effects Supervisor Karen Goulekas and though I’ve got no reason to doubt the word of someone on the inside, I’d feel a whole lot more comfortable if the announcement came from Warner Bros. Tentpoles are becoming more and more expensive, with studio’s taking substantial financial risks. There have been numerous big-budget projects that have been canned in recent months, so I won’t be totally sold until the camera’s are rolling.
Secondly, there’s been lots of talk and serious debate throughout Spill’s message boards about Ryan Reynold’s ability to take on Hal Jordan. I’d like to address this head on. I think that everyone involved in this production knows that comedy and GL don't really go together. That’s why they hired Martin Campbell – a filmmaker known for action and suspense. As with his Zorro films or even his work on the Bond franchise, HUMOR can be injected into the film in tolerable doses, but comic "schtick" will only debilitate the character. Reynolds is not known for his dramatic abilities but I think he's demonstrated a bit of range in films like The Amityville Horror and The Nines while balancing out his normal routine – a process which he will likely employ on this film.
WB is taking this seriously, as it's the first non Superman/Batman DC Superhero feature they've put together (not counting Watchmen, which doesn’t coincide with the larger DCU anyway) and it's going to be THE starting off point for building franchises with the other core characters. In my opinion, Reynolds was a solid casting choice and I think he recognizes the responsibility that comes with the role (based on recent interviews I’ve seen of him in which he discusses the project). I do not think he will disappoint. If there are any gripes to have with the developing production, it's the lack of overall casting thus far, but I'm sure those cards will begin to fall into place by the end of the month.
Next up is the bombshell: With Spider Man 4’s production delayed, Paramount and Marvel have decided to take advantage of its presently vacant date of May 6th, 2011 to unveil Thor. I was always hoping for two superhero movies in May 11’ and I think that the producers of Thor are going to feel really stupid if team Spidey can indeed get moving. I wouldn’t be opposed to Spider Man 4 moving to Memorial Day 11’ to keep things more or less on track, but that would put it up against The Hangover 2, creating severe competition for the male demographic and cutting into both films returns.
Which hero will end up wowing audiences on May 6th 2011?
The real question that remains is whether or not Spider Man 4 will get moving at all in time for next year. There’s been serious contention between Sony and Sam Raimi (and the fans) over the villains that will appear in the next chapter of the franchise. I think I can speak for all of us in saying that tolerating a “Vulturess” will be unacceptable. As big a fan as I am of the web-slinger, I’d rather not see another film than suffer through that.
In development news, Fox has hired the wonderfully comic writers of Zombieland, Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, to script Deadpool. I don’t think you could have asked for a better match of talent & material than this. The amusing narration they fed Jesse Eisenberg in their hit zom-com can almost be viewed as a foundation for “breaking the fourth wall” in the superhero spin-off. Add star Ryan Reynold’s tested comedic tone and timing to the fold and I think we’ve got a winner!
Finally, power producer Michael De Luca (American History X, Brothers) spilled some beans on his follow up to the 2007 Superhero stinker Ghost Rider and it’s already sounding more in line with the Spirit of Vengeance that we love from the comics. Some notable details include:
- Mark Steven Johnson will not be directing. Hallelujah!
- David Goyer, whose decade old screenplay will serve as the basis of the story, has just delivered a fresh polish on the script and may settle into the directors chair. Meh.
- Eva Mendes will not be sexing up the screen this time around. ☹
- Film will be set in Europe
- They are shooting for a “Hard PG-13” Rating in the vein of The Dark Knight
- The film may be done in 3D and it camera’s could be rolling as early as this year
As you can tell, studios who have film rights to Marvel characters are aggressively developing new films so they can retain those rights, so expect news on other properties (such as Fantastic Four and all the Mutants) coming your way soon...