Hrm. I wouldn’t have picked this grim direction for Superman — seems like a Captain America vibe would work better — but at least it’s different, I guess. Hopefully the presence of Chris Nolan will help rein in Snyder’s Sucker Punch sensibilities.
“I’m glad they took their time, and are trying to make the best zombie movie they can,” said Brooks. ‘I’m so glad they stayed with the project and so glad they found the right team.‘” In Comic-Con news, Brad Pitt will star in Marc Forster’s adaptation of World War Z, the zombie-apocalypse-by-way-of-Studs-Terkel novel by Max Brooks. Move over, True Blood and Team Edward: Between this and AMC’s version of The Walking Dead, zombie apocalypses are the new sparkly vampires.
“‘We are not returning Eddie Murphy’s calls,’ del Toro said, making a surprise appearance onstage, ‘…and we are not making it a comedy… We are making it scary and fun, but the scary will be scary.’” Also at Comic-Con, Guillermo del Toro announces he’s rebooting The Haunted Mansion for Disney. Uh, you dropped The Hobbit for this? I would’ve preferred Cthulhu.
As a result of the continuing fiasco at MGM (complicating any projects moving forward), Guillermo del Toro leaves The Hobbit. FWIW, the project is still moving forward, with Del Toro still writing the scripts with the LotR team and Peter Jackson saying he’ll direct if it comes down to it.
Del Toro’s leaving is unfortunate, but it sounds like the films are far enough along in pre-production already that they’ll carry some of his vision and ingenuity regardless. Still, this brings us back to 2007…Sam Raimi? Alfonso Cuaron? Peter Weir? Neil Blomkamp?
Guillermo Del Toro — director of Blade 2, Hellboy, Devil’s Backbone, and Pan’s Labyrinth — announces he’s working on a remake of Tarzan with Master and Commander scribe John Collee. “‘I’d love to create a new version that is still a family movie, but as edgy as I can make it,’ Del Toro said. ‘There are strong themes of survival of a defenseless child left behind in the most hostile environment.’”
Several items for the trailer bin:
* Diane Lane and Thomas Jane go on the lam to escape hitmen Mickey Rourke and Joseph Gordon-Leavitt in this glimpse at John Madden’s Tarantino’ed-up version of Elmore Leonard’s Killshot. (Johnny Knoxville and Rosario Dawson are involved in some fashion as well.)
* Nicole Kidman ventures through the photographic looking-glass as Diane Arbus in Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus, the new film by Secretary‘s Steven Shainberg, also with Robert Downey Jr. (Mirrored here.)
* Helen Mirren jumps from Elizabeth I to Elizabeth II in this look at Stephen Frears’ The Queen, concerning Buckingham Palace’s reaction to the death of Princess Diana. (I have zero interest in the subject matter, frankly, but I do like Mirren, Frears, and James Cromwell, and there’s an iffy Tony Blair impression here by Michael Sheen, to say nothing of the guy playing Prince Charles.)
* Finally, Guillermo del Toro returns to the faerie Spain of The Devil’s Backbone in this rapid-edit teaser for Pan’s Labyrinth. (Being on a lousy hotel connection, I couldn’t get this link to work, but I believe the same teaser is mirrored here.)
Who do? You do. The eerie new teaser for Guillermo Del Toro’s Pan’s Labyrinth, a sequel of sorts to Cronos and The Devil’s Backbone, is now online. (Click through the ad.)
AICN reports some (somewhat dubious) rumors on a slew of comic book sequels, including Hellboy 2, Spiderman 3, and X3/X4. Also in the sequel department, Episode 3 — now apparently titled Rise of the Empire — gets the Latham Film treatment. (They previously made the Hobbit and RotK fan teasers, although this one, frankly, isn’t quite up to snuff.)
Well, I’ve only read a handful of issues of the comic over the years, but I could tell Guillermo del Toro’s Hellboy looks and feels just about perfect. You can’t really ask for a better Big Red than Ron Perlman here, and John Hurt always brings class to the equation. The film’s got Rasputin, both post-dead Nazi ninjas and evil blonde Nazi temptresses (a.k.a Darth Maul and Indy 3‘s Ilsa Schneider respectively), and even heavy shades of the Cthulhu mythos. What more should a fanboy desire?
And yet, perhaps it was due to a post-orals energy slump, but I found the movie kinda slow and uninvolving. The curse of any first comic movie is the origin stuff (although in Spiderman at least, that turned out to be the best part of the film), and here I thought all of the backstory and character introductions took just a little too long. Then we have Hellboy beating up Sammael the Hellhound over and over again for an hour, followed by a rather cheesy and nonsensical third act in Russia (with heavy borrowing from the Temple of Doom this time, and particularly when Agent Myers has his rosary moment…soon Kali Ma will rule the world!) I probably enjoyed Hellboy most when it was pushing the unfathomable evils of Lovecraft angle, but tuned out slightly whenever it was time to punch out another hellhound, which, sadly, was most of the movie.
Perhaps I’m being too hard on Hellboy. The acting was good all around, and, really, it’s undoubtedly going to be better than 4 out of 5 comic movies this year (Case in point: The Punisher.) Still, while I wasn’t expecting as lyrical as The Devil’s Backbone, I was expecting a popcorn film as fun as Blade II…and in that category, I thought Hellboy was somewhat wanting. Then again, it took a second go for Bryan Singer to get the X-Men popping, so perhaps Del Toro can cut to the chase in a Hellboy 2.
Emptying out the trailer bin today, we’ve got the new Prisoner of Azkaban teaser (not appreciably different than the last preview, but still looks better than the Chris Columbus movies), a second look at Tony Scott’s Man on Fire (Denzel + little girl + slo-mo explosions = ?), the new clip for The Punisher (Much better than the last one, but I still doubt I’ll see it), and a new TV spot for The Passion of the Hellboy (Nobody likes robot Nazis.)
In the trailer bin this morning, a quicktime version of Hellboy (still looks intriguing but possibly LXG-ish) and a first look at Thunderbirds. Farscape is my sci-fi puppet show of choice, so I can’t say this much appeals to me…but then again, the original is way before my time.
The trailer for Guillermo del Toro’s adaptation of Hellboy, one of the more eagerly awaited fanboy projects out there, is now online. I’m actually not all that familiar with the comic, so to my mind this could go either way. It’s hard to go wrong with John Hurt against souped-up Nazi evil, but some of the effects look mighty CGI. We’ll see.
“The God that holds you over the pit of hell, much as one holds a spider or some loathsome insect over the fire, abhors you, and is dreadfully provoked.” Non-sequiturs aside, the Hellboy site goes live. I don’t know much about the comic, to be honest, but so far, this still looks intriguing. Also in comic film news, Sony releases the Spiderman 2 poster…note the mini-Alfred Molina in Spidey’s eye.
AICN gets their grubby hands on publicity stills of Hellboy and Abe Sapien. To be honest, I’m not very familiar with the comic, but Ron Perlman looks like every Mike Mignola sketch of the character I’ve ever seen. Good to see the art of make-up is still alive and well in the era of CGI characters.
The comic book takeover of Hollywood continues with the first picture of Ron Perlman as Guillermo del Toro’s Hellboy. Looks decent enough.
Speaking of cinema, making my top 20 films list the other day has encouraged me to get back in the habit of renting (the lousy weather the past four days has helped.) Over the past few days, I’ve perused Bill Paxton’s Frailty (Interesting, but I think The Rapture does this better), Guillermo Del Toro’s The Devil’s Backbone (I quite liked it, although the Spanish Civil War allegory gets a bit heavy), Wes Andersons’ The Royal Tenenbaums (I liked this as well. It’s a bit too self-consciously quirky, perhaps, but Gene Hackman is great, and there are sight gags aplenty. Far better than anything by the other Anderson.) and David Fincher’s Panic Room (Disappointing and strangely dull. The floating camera shots, which worked so well when used sparingly in Fight Club, seem unnecessary and distracting here. And Jared Leto seems out of his depth.) K-19: The Widowmaker will be this evening’s presentation, and if it ever comes back in I’d like to see Donnie Darko sometime this weekend as well.