Hollywood scion and “Notebook” director Nick Cassavetes will bring the armored Avenger to the silver screen, according to the Hollywood Reporter. Cassavetes will be working from a script by David Hayter (with touches of the old Al Gough/Miles Millar draft) “will reflect modern technological, political and societal trends. Cassavetes, also a screenwriter, will do a polish.” On the choice, Marvel’s Avi Arad said, “Do you remember what Bryan Singer did before ‘X-Men?’ That was considered an odd choice. Sam Raimi directed ‘A Simple Plan’ and ‘The Gift’ before ‘Spider-Man.’ We have a good track record of getting directors that get the material. (‘Iron Man’) is a huge movie, with big action and incredible technology, but without understanding and loving Tony Stark, then all the money in the world isn’t going to get you where you want to go. It all starts with the emotional mix.”
Screenwriter John Roger has recently started his own blog (and thanks to Warren Ellis for noting it on his own blog). He has yet to drop any tidbits about the upcooming giant robot film, but we’ll keep an eye on it.
Multi-hyphenated comics creator Jimmy Palmiotti talked to Comics Continuum about plans to adapt the Event Comics character, created by Palmiotti and Marvel E-I-C Joe Quesada. “The character is being developed for a live-action pilot for Sci Fi Channel by NBC Universal TV Studios in association with MGM TV.” Palmiotti said, “Well, certain people at the Sci Fi network have been interested in the property for a long time now, and like a tennis ball, it got bounced back and forth for a while until someone finally decided to commit to the project. Joe and I just let them do their thing; we obviously had better and more pressing things to do for the past couple of years.”
Speaking of the web-spinning sequel, there’s news on that front as well. First, director Sam Raimi talked to USA Today talking about villain possibilities: “the Green Goblin — possibly resurrected by Harry Osborn (James Franco) — the Vulture and Kraven the Hunter. ‘I’m trying to figure out what (Peter Parker) is going to be learning on this next adventure,’ Raimi says. ‘Once I know this journey and the conflicts to put in, I would choose the villain that best represents those conflicts.'”
He then talked to Sci Fi Wire about his progress in writing the next film. “We’ve finished a 50-page document and now I’m working with my storyboard artist to work out some of the visuals,” Raimi said in an interview while promoting the DVD release of Spider-Man 2. “And I’m about to start working with Alvin Sargent [who received the ‘Screenplay by’ credit on Spider-Man 2] on the first draft of the screenplay. I’m still not quite there in determining the villain.”
Backstage.com published a new article on what kinds of cool super special effects we’ll be seeing in upcoming films like the Bryan Singer-helmed DC adaptation. “Culver City, Calif.-based Sony Pictures Imageworks also announced refinements in its digital human R&D. During the same panel, Sony Pictures Imageworks president Tim Sarnoff reported that the company’s work in this area is ‘so far advanced beyond ‘Spider-Man 2,’ which is now two-year-old technology.’ He said that moviegoers will see far more complex digital actors in future superhero movies, including a third ‘Spider-Man’ film and ‘Superman.'”
Comics Continuum also talked to special effects supervisor Kurt Williams about bringing that fantastic world to life. “I thought long and hard before I jumped in on this movie,” Williams said. “Because it really is one of the more challenging Marvel comics. It’s not that you have two characters, but in this movie we have five characters to bring off the Marvel page into a live-action film and try to make believe them. Despite all the technology hurdles to be overcome, I needed to give him a skillset with each character that could develop throughout the movie and relate to the characters’ emotions and things like, that will allow us to develop the characters from the first time their hit with the cosmic rays to the end of the movie as they become the Fantastic Four, as they develop their powers and refine them. Obviously, the very first thing we did was go. back to the comic book. And our job was to find images in the comic book that could translate to a live-action, photo-real. So we went to great lengths to find through all of the Marvel work, with the help of Marvel’s Kevin Feige and Avi (Arad), to come up with the types of images they wanted to see as these characters develop. One of our edicts, one of the things we think about every time we work on a shot is, is that character organic? Does it have attributes from our world that have true physics to it.”
IESB has some screen captures from the upcoming video game based on the Christopher Nolan-helmed DC adaptation, which may contain some spoilers … from a certain point of view.
Comics Continuum also has some quotes from Australian actor and “John Doe” veteran Dominic Purcell, who plays the film’s lead antagonist. “Ever since I was a kid I always wanted to do action movies,” Purcell said. “This is one of the biggest action franchises out there, and it’s really exciting to be involved in it and learn how to do stuff you wouldn’t normally do — like jumping over buildings and blowing up cars. It’s just a lot of fun.”
Meanwhile, Jessica Biel talked to Sci Fi Wire about the action in the upcoming action film. “The fight scene … took, I think, … two days to shoot, because we shot it in one long master, basically,” she said. “And it was 13 guys, and it was one after another after another after another. … It worked much better for me to keep doing it in one big whole … sequence than to chop it up, because … you lose your momentum coming from one person to the next. I was also working with the best stunt people ever. I mean, they sold everything. … If I gave kind of a crappy punch, they still sold it like I knocked them out. So it was really half our stunt people’s fault that it looked so great. … It was 14, 15 hours one day of just fighting all day long, and after the day, I was just wiped, every muscle. So I almost threw out my back. I mean, you get to a point where you’re like, ‘Holy crap, I don’t know if I’m going to survive it.’ But it was awesome. It was so much fun.”
Moviefone has posted a fourth “fight” featurette (QuickTime only) from the February-bowing “Daredevil” spin-off.
An anonymoous source emailed us with this link and this one, which seems to imply that the movie will go direct-to-video in Brazil, if not everywhere. Our source said, “it doesn’t mean the movie won’t be show in theaters above the Equator line. ‘THE PUNISHER’ was cancelled here and is going straight to video in Feb. 05, so distribution here is different — usually done after the [projected] US box office is analysed.”
MORE COWBELL …
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