Spinning Headlines – Week 21: Battle Angel Alita, Star Wars, Westworld, Denis Villeneuve, Alien: Covenant, Blade, Sergio Leone…
Well, will you look at that – I got meself back to the normal schedule. As always, check out the “news”-section for other news-bits of the week. This week we got a couple: the first being that John Carpenter is back in the creative team for the next “Halloween”-movie; at least in some shape(see what I did there?) of form, and there’s a new supernatural thiller called “Morgan” coming.
“ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL” CAST?
Remember a couple weeks ago when it was reported that there were three final contenders for the lead role in the Robert Rodriguez/James Cameron-adaptation of the Manga “Battle Angel Alita“? Looks like they picked the winner. Multiple sources have reported today that Rosa Salazar(“Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials”) got the part.
STAR WARS CELEBRATION: EUROPE GOT A PRETTY COOL AD POSTER
Star Wars Celebration: Europe event, that will take place in London from July 15th to July 17th got this fine piece of promotional artwork.
Well, it looks like a Todd Solonz movie, alright. Here’s the official synopsis:
“From director Todd Solondz (WELCOME TO THE DOLLHOUSE, HAPPINESS), WIENER-DOG is a dark, starkly funny story of a single dog and the many different people she touches over her short lifetime. Man’s best friend starts out teaching a young boy some contorted life lessons before being taken in by a compassionate vet tech named Dawn Wiener. Dawn reunites with someone from her past and sets off on a road trip. After leaving Dawn, Wiener-Dog encounters a floundering film professor, as well as an embittered elderly woman and her needy granddaughter—all longing for something more. Solondz’s perversely dark comedy offers an appallingly honest look at the American experience, brought to life by its all-star cast.”
HBO’S TROUBLED “WESTWORLD” NEARING PREMIERE
HBO’s reboot of “Westworld” looked good, when the first teaser pictures and the teaser trailer came out – a grittier, darker, more violent take on the 1973 Michael Crichton-directed film, a kick-ass cast, including Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, Evan Rachel Wood, and James Marsden… But then came trouble; production was halted for several months and the word was that the final four episodes underwent basically a page one-rewrite. And for a while, there was no news. Until now. HBO announced their new shows for the fall and “Westworld” is definitely there. Here’s the HBO’s full fall-lineup of new programming:
Westworld – The one-hour drama series WESTWORLD (ten episodes) is a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the evolution of sin. Set at the intersection of the near future and the reimagined past, it explores a world in which every human appetite, no matter how noble or depraved, can be indulged. The cast includes Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, Thandie Newton, Jeffrey Wright, Tessa Thompson, Sidse Babett Knudsen, Jimmi Simpson, Rodrigo Santoro, Shannon Woodward, Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Ben Barnes, Simon Quarterman, Angela Sarafyan, Luke Hemsworth and Clifton Collins, Jr. Inspired by the motion picture “Westworld,” written and directed by Michael Crichton. Production companies, Bad Robot Productions, Jerry Weintraub Productions and Kilter Films in association with Warner Bros. Television. Executive producer/writer/director, Jonathan Nolan; executive producer/writer, Lisa Joy; executive producers, J.J. Abrams, Jerry Weintraub, Bryan Burk.
Divorce – The half-hour comedy series DIVORCE (ten episodes) stars Sarah Jessica Parker, who also serves as an executive producer, as Frances, a woman who suddenly begins to reassess her life and her marriage, and finds that making a clean break and a fresh start is harder than she thought. The show also stars Thomas Haden Church, Molly Shannon, Talia Balsam, Tracy Letts, Sterling Jerins and Charlie Kilgore. Pilot episode written by Sharon Horgan; directed by Jesse Peretz. Series created by Sharon Horgan; executive produced by Paul Simms, Sarah Jessica Parker, Sharon Horgan, Alison Benson and Aaron Kaplan.
Insecure – The half-hour comedy series INSECURE (eight episodes), starring Issa Rae, Yvonne Orji, Jay Ellis and Lisa Joyce, looks at the friendship of two black women and their uncomfortable experiences and racy tribulations. Created and executive produced by Issa Rae, the show is also executive produced by Prentice Penny, Melina Matsoukas, Michael Rotenberg, Dave Becky and Jonathan Berry. Larry Wilmore serves as a consultant.
High Maintenance – The half-hour comedy series HIGH MAINTENANCE (six episodes) follows a Brooklyn pot dealer who delivers to clients with neuroses as diverse as the city. The show stars Ben Sinclair as “The Guy,” a friendly pot dealer whose clients include an eccentric group of characters, revealing the dynamics of their lives. From the unexpected and offbeat to the predictable and mundane, the series provides a glimpse into the daily routines of the customers and how they light things up. Created and written by the married duo of Katja Blichfeld and Ben Sinclair, and executive produced by Katja Blichfeld, Russell Gregory and Ben Sinclair.
Some other HBO-related news of late have been that the network’s Programming President Michael Lombardo left his post after 33 years and was followed by the networks former comedy executive(now THERE’S a title!) Casey Bloys. And “True Detective” may be done after two seasons and the creator Nic Pizzolatto will likely focus on developing entirely new material.
Whatever may come, HBO is definitely under a shake-up.
JAKE GYLLENHAAL TO REUNITE WITH DENIS VILLENEUVE
Granted, director Denis Villeneuve(“Prisoners”, “Enemy”) is pretty busy right now, working on the Ridley Scott-produced sequel to “Blade Runner“, but the news came out that after this he will once again join up with actor Jake Gyllenhaal for a movie. That movie is to be an adaptation of Norwgian writer Jo Nesbo‘s suspense novel, “The Son”. The book follows a long-imprisoned drug addict who stages a breakout on a mission of vengeance when he discovers the surprising truths behind his father’s suicide.
Gyllenhaal will also produce the film under his Nine Stories-banner(the first movie produced through this banner: “Nightcrawler”), with his co-producer Riva Marker. Marker commented on “The Son” as follows: “Denis is one of the most inspiring filmmakers working today, and partnering with him on The Son represents everything that Jake and I strived for when we launched the company. Provocative and edgy material in collaboration with a visionary storyteller. We were attracted to The Son because beneath its dark and violent exterior is a universal story about a man who seeks the truth.”
FIRST STILL FROM “ALIEN: COVENANT”
Yup, it’s a corridor from an “Alien“-movie allright…
ANOTHER TRAILER FOR “DEEPWATER HORIZON”
(Not sponsored by BP, I imagine)
WESLEY SNIPES STILL LOBBYING FOR MORE “BLADE”
When it comes to another BLADE, there's always a possibility. 😁#SharpeningMyTeeth
— Wesley Snipes (@wesleysnipes) May 24, 2016
Balls in Marvels court…
— Wesley Snipes (@wesleysnipes) May 24, 2016
Well, Snipes Tweeted those two tweets this week. He is trying his damnest to get “Blade” back in some way, be it a movie OR a Netflix-show. Maybe they should go with a “DOFP”-style solution and attempt to wipe “Blade: Trinity” from the canon first?
“WOLVERINE”-ACTRESS RILA FUKUSHIMA CAST IN “GHOST IN THE SHELL”
Yup. Rila Fukushima, who played Yukio in “The Wolverine“, has joined Scarlett Johansson in DreamWorks’ “Ghost in the Shell”. No word yet, what character she will play. Anyways – I imagine another fanboy-rage about the studio trying to this time cover their own ass from whitewashing-accusations starts in 3…2…1…
SERGIO LEONE’S TV-IDEA RESURRECTED BY LEONE HEIRS
This is pretty cool. It seems that the late director maestro Sergio Leone had an idea around 1987 to make a television series. The concept of the show would be akin to something like Anthony Mann‘s “Winchester ’73,” which traces the journey of a prized rifle from one ill-fated owner to another; Only Leone’s show – titled simply “Colt” – would’ve followed the story of the revolver used by Clint Eastwood in “For a Fistful of Dollars.” Now it seems that The Leone Film Group, ran by Leone’s children Raffaella and Andrea Leone, is trying to resurrect this idea, based on a story treatment Leone made with his writing partner Sergio Donati back in the day.
“It’s from my father’s idea in which the gun was the main character and the device through which the tale is told. We are thinking of six episodes, each one connected to a single gun shot. But we could do more,” said Raffaella. Director Stefano Sollima(“Gomorra”) is set to direct the first two episodes and act as showrunner.
CHRISTOPHER NOLAN’S “DUNKIRK” BEGINS SHOOTING
— pierre volot (@pierrevolot) May 20, 2016
— pierre volot (@pierrevolot) May 23, 2016
First on set-photos from Dunkirk arrived via Twitter and it’s nice to see that Nolan is using very old-school filmmaking techniques instead of going all grenscreen. The first proper plot synopsis was also released:
Warner Bros. Pictures announced today that principal photography on the epic action thriller “Dunkirk” is underway in Dunkirk, France. Christopher Nolan (“Interstellar,” “Inception,” “The Dark Knight” Trilogy) is directing “Dunkirk” from his own original screenplay, utilizing a mixture of IMAX® and 65mm film to bring the story to the screen. The production will shoot in France, Holland, the UK and Los Angeles.
“Dunkirk” opens as hundreds of thousands of British and Allied troops are surrounded by enemy forces. Trapped on the beach with their backs to the sea they face an impossible situation as the enemy closes in.
“Dunkirk” features a prestigious cast, including Tom Hardy (“The Revenant,” “Mad Max: Fury Road,” “Inception”), Mark Rylance (“Bridge of Spies,” “Wolf Hall”), Kenneth Branagh (“My Week with Marilyn,” “Hamlet,” “Henry V”) and Cillian Murphy (“Inception,” “The Dark Knight” Trilogy), as well as newcomer Fionn Whitehead. The ensemble cast also includes Aneurin Barnard, Harry Styles, James D’Arcy, Jack Lowden, Barry Keoghan and Tom Glynn-Carney.
The film is being produced by Nolan and Emma Thomas (“Interstellar,” “Inception,” “The Dark Knight” Trilogy). Jake Myers (“The Revenant,” “Interstellar,” “Jack Reacher”) is serving as executive producer.
The behind-the-scenes creative team includes director of photography Hoyte van Hoytema (“Interstellar,” “Spectre,” “The Fighter”), production designer Nathan Crowley (“Interstellar,” “The Dark Knight” Trilogy), editor Lee Smith (“The Dark Knight” Trilogy, “Elysium”), costume designer Jeffrey Kurland (“Inception,” “Bullets Over Broadway”), and visual effects supervisor Andrew Jackson (“Mad Max: Fury Road”).
Warner Bros. Pictures is distributing “Dunkirk” worldwide and has slated the film for a July 21, 2017 release.
SPIT-TAKE OF THE WEEK
Well, it’s the statement by Nicholas Cage, that the script of the third “National Treasure“-movie is currently in the process of “Fact-checking”… Really? Because the first two movies were TOTALLY historically accurate?
That is all.