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Movie News, May 2012

In my continuing quest to track down interesting movie news, I found some stuff about The Avengers, some cool new trailers, a strange apocalyptic movie where actors play themselves, and a casting spoiler that is really cool. Welcome to the second installment of J.D.'s Movie News!

Dark Shadows opens this week, and I will be putting up a review of it this weekend. Here is the goofy, yet appealing trailer. This feels like a return to form for Tim Burton, and I'm not ashamed to admit I'm looking forward to seeing this one.

The Avengers opened last week, and it was simply marvelous. I won't go into details, because Mark Grieg wrote a similarly marvelous review. But speaking of The Avengers, Mark Ruffalo (Bruce Banner/Hulk) has signed a deal to be in six Marvel movies. I imagine this is to counter the fallout from the loud issues with Edward Norton. Norton had some infamous fights with the producers of The Incredible Hulk, and gave them a hard time with negotiations when the studio tried to get him back for The Avengers. They haven't said if there will be a standalone Hulk movie, and just because Ruffalo has signed doesn't mean we'll see the big green guy in those six movies. But it's good news, continuity-wise.

Also last week, there was some public quibbling about how long Robert Downey Jr. would be willing to continue as Iron Man, and he responded with a vague but positive "a lot more!". The Avengers had an 18 million dollar midnight and an 80 million dollar first day, second only to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. It has now already grossed over 200 million at the box office domestically, so it will go into the record books as having the #1 opening weekend of all time (so far). For those of us that have seen the film already and want more, Joss Whedon has revealed there will be close to 30 minutes of extra deleted scenes on the DVD. Personally, I'm not much for deleted scenes, but that has me kinda excited.

The final Prometheus trailer shows a bit more monster and a lot more grue. It doesn't add much to what has already been shown, but I'm a little conflicted. Creating a new monster when the original Alien was so iconic is a bold direction to take. In the end though, this trailer has me both excited and little worried.

In more trailer news; we finally get a good one for The Dark Knight Rises. It is dark (no pun intended), and evokes the feeling of the last movie. It uses silence and menace to bring about tension, and still manages to not tell us a single thing about the plot. I did get the impression they might be doing a truncated version of Knightfall, which was a huge multiple issue/title Batman story arc from the 90's. It was also the big story that brought the villain Bane to the forefront, who is the main villain in The Dark Knight Rises.

The new Amazing Spider-man trailer gives us a better feel for the differences between this one and the last incarnation. In a lot of ways, it looks a little too similar to the original. However, the overall tone and story choices make it seem less like just a rehash, and more like a completely new direction. To illustrate the point, here is a link to the original Spider-man trailer.

Emma Watson (Harry Potter series) was just cast as herself in Seth Rogen's The End of the World. Yes she will be playing a Meta version of herself, along with Jason Segal, David Krumholtz, James Fanco, Jonah Hill, Jay Baruchel, and Danny McBride. Seth Rogen will also be acting in it as himself. It's about the end of the world, but that's about all I know except that the actors will be playing versions of themselves. It seems fascinating, and really weird. I hadn't heard about this movie before, and I almost didn't check out the article. But I'm not looking forward to finding out more.

In Hunger Games sequel news; things didn't work out with Gary Ross, the director of Hunger Games, for the impending sequels. So they have decided to re-write the scripts? This isn't exactly strange for the industry, but it is likely due to the fact that the studio (Lionsgate) wanted Ross to do a revision script, which he obviously won't be doing. The new director is Francis Lawrence (who directed I Am Legend, Constantine, and Water for Elephants). And along with hiring him, the studio is also looking for new screenwriter. The name at the top of the list is interesting. It's Michael Arndt who did the screen play for Little Miss Sunshine, and Toy Story 3.

Did you all know there is a Total Recall remake coming? Why should we care? I'm honestly not sure, but the trailer looks interesting. Colin Farrell leads the cast as Quaid. In fact it looks like they are doing the exact same story, except without Mars. That's right, they are not using the Mars setting at all. Still, I am looking forward to this. The Arnold version was fun, but ultimately not all that great. There is definitely room for improvement.

They are remaking Little Shop of Horrors again, but this time they are going in a completely different direction from either the Roger Corman 1960's version or the musical version. It's welcome news, but I'm not sure how I feel about yet another remake. Still, the story could conceivably be taken in all sorts of directions.

Battleship (which opens next week in the U.S.) has been out for three weeks in some countries. That's the second movie recently that has done that. I understand there might be some marketing reason, yet I'm a little upset that there is another big tent pole movie that has been released worldwide before it was released domestically. Honestly, I couldn't care less about this particular movie, but this trend is bugging me. There has always been a bit of an unfair release system in place, and that's odd, because worldwide simultaneous releases are very possible with today's technology, especially with more and more theaters transitioning to digital projection. So why are there staggered release dates? Why do some countries have to wait months for American movies? And why are movies produced outside the U.S. rarely shown in American theaters? I honestly don't have an answer, but I'd like one.

Spoilers Ahead for Star Trek 2!

There is a major rumor going around about the identity of Benedict Cumberbatch's character in the new Star Trek movie releasing next year. This is all but officially confirmed, and it doesn't come as much of a surprise since the rumor about the character being in the movie has been circulating for a while. So who is it? (Bail out now if you don't want to be spoiled...


It's strange... I can almost hear Shatner's (ahem Kirk's) scream echoing all the way from Ceti Alpha V. KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!

Samantha M. Quinn spends most of her time in front of a computer typing away at one thing or another; when she has free time, she enjoys pretty much anything science fiction or fantasy-related.


  1. I seriously love that photo of Johnny Depp. Every time I see a trailer for Dark Shadows, I laugh out loud.

    Good job, J.D.

  2. Last paragraph :


    I will never forget that 1982 scene with the Shat. Never.

    I wasn't happy with a reboot of Total Recall, but the trailers available made me....say yes...

    And finally, once again, very eager to see Prometheus...

  3. While I agree that staggered release dates are annoying, particularly of the "have-to-wait-months" (or just plain not available) type, I have a halfbaked but plausible-sounding theory that it has to do with timing. The US/Canada release dates are picked based on the "shape" of the year, when holidays are, what people are likely to be doing, etc. (and to spread out the big movies, to some extent). Change to some other part of the world, e.g. Europe, and you get a different positioning of holidays and other activities so a different release date may make a lot more sense, especially for big movies where there's so much emphasis on a huge opening weekend. For example, Battleship seems to have opened in the UK in mid-April near the end of their two-week Easter school holidays, which wouldn't suit a US release, while the later US release date wouldn't suit the UK.

    It's less about whether the movie is available than what they want to use the cinemas for on different dates, and how they can make a big impact.

  4. "Why do some countries have to wait months for American movies? And why are movies produced outside the U.S. rarely shown in American theaters?"

    Excellent question! As someone who has no idea when (or if!) Cabin in the Woods will show up in Spain, this is something which has been bugging me for years! :o(

  5. Well I don't know why the US gets it later, but I'm pretty sure some countries get it earlier so that the people don't pirate the movies impatiently :P

    Oh and as for Dark Knight Rises, it's apparently drawing from other storylines too - you mentioned Knightfall, and it also takes from The Dark Knight Returns and No Man's Land, apparently.


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