Just in case you missed it, here at CBR we have a review of the film from our own executive producer Jonah Weiland. He calls it “the best Marvel film release yet,” and points to its fantasy and world building aspects that set it apart from the traditional superhero yarn. He also praises Tom Hiddleston’s performance as Loki. “While he may appear almost half the size of Hemsworth, at no point do you doubt his power when he goes up against Heimdall or battles his brother in the final action sequence. His deviousness and duplicity make him an instantly memorable villain,” he writes. Meanwhile, The Hollywood Reporter rounded up a few more reviews of the film, including their own. “The ultimate accessibility of Thor’s fantastical world is due in no smallÂ measure to the good-humored direction of Kenneth Branagh, a man with a highbrow history who knows his way around an epic tale, and a star-making turn from Chris Hemsworth,” they write. Finally, MTV News‘s Rick Marshall poses with a toy Mjolnir sent to his office in anticipation of the film and Toy Fair 2011:
Starring Chris Hemsworth, release date: May 6th, 2011
THE DARK KNIGHT RISES
As our pals at Spinoff Online reported, actor Nestor Carbonell is in talks to reprise his role as the Mayor of Gotham in the next Batman flick. Being one of the few public officials not corrupt or dead by the end of “The Dark Knight,” let’s hope his character survives the film.
Release date: July 20th, 2012
THE LONE RANGER
According to The Wrap, actor Ryan Gosling is in talks to take on the domino mask of the wild west’s own costumed hero. Johnny Depp has already been cast as Tonto in the film which will be directed by Gore Verbinski of “Pirates of the Caribbean” fame. Completing the troika of talent from that film series is producer Jerry Bruckheimer. The Wrap notes Gosling’s commitment to “Logan’s Run” may prevent him from becoming the Ranger.
Release date: TBA
Director Joss Whedon jokingly tells The New York Times that, “We’re just a hardscrabble bunch. Guerrilla filmmaking. I start production a week from Monday. I’m going to get started on the script now. Apparently that’s a thing. I don’t get it. Improv stunts are always way more exciting-looking.” Meanwhile, Superhero Hype caught up with Zak Penn, one of the writers involved with the project. “Do you believe in Joss Whedon? Do you believe in him? I believe in him! That’s my comment,” he says. “If you believe in Joss you should be excited. Actually Joss and I went to the same college so we have a long history. I’m very excited. I can’t wait to see what happens with it, you know.”
Directed by Joss Whedon & starring everybody, release date: May 4th, 2012
MAN OF STEEL
According to Bleeding Cool, a synopsis for the film appeared on The Baseline Studio System, a repository of film data that has proved accurate over time. Here’s the plot BC’s Brendon Connelly found there: “A young reporter named Clark Kent roams the world covering various news stories. When he is compelled to use his secret powers to intervene in a crisis in West Africa, he returns to Smallville to learn more about his origins and the hero he was born to be.” Of course, Studio System is a pay website, so the data is not publicly available — and the “West Africa” part appeared in a rumor last year — but Connelly is willing to bet that this is the real deal. Time will tell, I suppose.
Release date: 2012?
Variety reports that actor Jason Statham is in negotiations to play Donald Westlake’s Parker for director Taylor Hackford. While it is unclear if this will be another adaptation of the first Parker novel (made into “Point Blank” with Lee Marvin in the late 60s and “Payback” with Mel Gibson in the late 90s) or one his later outings, Variety describes the script as centering on a “thief who, though at times is forced to be a killer, still lives by a code of honor that includes never stealing money from people who need it. His word is his bond, and if he is crossed he will strike back relentlessly.” If you’ve read Darwyn Cooke’s superb comic book adaptations of the first three Parker novels, you know that pretty much works for any of the stories. Personally, I’m hoping they start from “The Outfit.”
Release date: TBA
JOHN CARTER OF MARS
Taylor Kitsch tells MTV News that he’s seen the trailer for the film.
Interesting sales pitch, don’t you think?
Directed by Andrew Stanton, release date: March 9th, 2012
According to Blastr, Syfy’s new superhero show will premiere on July 11th at 10 PM. Here’s the official description: “‘Alphas’ follows a team of ordinary citizens with extraordinary mental and physical abilities. Taking the law into their own hands, the unlikely team, led by Dr. Leigh Rosen (Emmy Award-winner and Oscar nominee David Strathairn) investigates cases that suggest other Alpha activity to uncover what the CIA, FBI and Pentagon have not been able, or willing, to solve. These gifted individuals must balance their quirky personalities and disparate backgrounds with their not always visible powers as they work to solve crimes, stop the ticking time bomb and catch the enemy.” In that Superhero Hype article I linked to up top, Zak Penn (an executive producer on the series) offered a few comments about the show. “[It’s] probably closer to ‘The Mentalist’ or ‘The X-Files’ in its pitch. Seriously, that’s where we started from,” he said. “And then I kind of got in some of the stuff I always wanted to do in superhero genre. I managed to find the real world equivalent of it. So as opposed to ‘Heroes’ which is completely serialized–I haven’t watched the whole series but it is a lot like ‘X-Men.’ We purposely started from the totally other direction in terms of what the show is actually like. In the same way that ‘Law & Order’ is nothing like ‘Heat.’ They’re two opposite ends of the genre. I think for me I was less worried about that than I was about other procedural type shows that had some overlap with us. But luckily they all got canceled.” A superhero procedural. Now that’s an interesting idea.
Airdate: July 11th, 2011
A TOY STORY
This might be a controversial opinion, but I don’t care for the “Toy Story” films with the possible exception of the third one. I finally saw it over the weekend and it crystallized my problem with the series: Woody’s devotion to his master is really, really, creepy. Each film supports his viewpoint and he never really learns anything. Well, maybe he learned to let his master go in “Toy Story 3.” I’m still debating that. Meanwhile, if any of you in the great, wide Internet discover something awesome, disheartening, or just plain weird, let us know! Take credit, come up with a clever nickname, or go anonymous. The choice is yours. Fresh rumors and movie news every weekday morning. I am Erik Amaya, bracing for the future threat of further Pixar sequels.