www.cbr.com

Issue #96

SPIDER-MAN

Reports appearing on Ain't it Cool News late last week indicated Barry Sonnenfeld (Wild Wild West) may now be the front-runner to direct the Spider-Man movie. AICN followed up on their previous report which indicated that, along with Sonnenfeld, David Fincher (Fight Club), Michael Bay (Armageddon) and Chris Columbus (Mrs. Doubtfire) were all under heavy consideration for the job.

According to the most recent report, Fincher has passed on the job. Likewise, Bay is too busy with his Pearl Harbor and also didn't feel David Koepp's current Spidey script was up to par. Unnamed sources who have seen Koepp's told AICN that it was a "dud". AICN had no word from the Columbus' people.

An earlier report from AICN indicated that Sonnenfeld was eager to come on board and bring a new writer with him. That report indicated the director would create a new "mad scientist" villain for the movie.

Has Chris O'Donnell (Batman & Robin) been cast in the title role of the Spider-Man movie? A Thanksgiving report on Ted Casablanca's The Awful Truth column on the E! website suggests just that. Supposedly the actor was heard to shout, "I am Spider-Man!" while running down the halls at Sony (no doubt with scissors in hand). There have been no official casting announcements about the movie, so it's hard to say what to make of the former boy wonder's outburst.

In a related story Ain't it Cool News continues to catch buzz on the director choice for the movie. Although they'd previously reported that David Fincher (Fight Club) had bowed out of the running, the latest update indicates that the director is only now getting a formal offer from Sony. Regardless of who helms the picture AICN's sources tell them that the script needs a significant rewrite.

And speaking of the script, Corona Coming Attractions points readers to an online excerpt of James Cameron's treatment for the movie. David Koepp's screenplay is said to be based on Cameron's work.

X-MEN

Of the seemingly endless array of X-Men set reports, the latest comes from the most credible source yet: Sir Ian McKellen who plays Magneto in the movie. Reporting from the X-Men section of his official website, McKellen talks about his recent experiences shooting the movie.

In his November 10, update McKellen talks a bit weather conditions that effect the shooting, "The location filming in Hamilton has been through the night, for a week, from dusk 'til freezing dawn," The actor said. "Pity Rebecca Romijn-Stamos in her blue Mystique disguise, a makeup that takes four hours to apply and leaves her almost naked with no protection against the night cold. Never a word of complaint, though. In comparison I am molly-coddled, with warming tights under my outfit of grey sweater, black pants and knee-length boots."

The actor goes on to describe the costume he wears as the master of magnetism, "Magneto's work-uniform is a tight fit, inspired by the comic strip design but influenced by the latest catwalk fashion. It involves a maroon-lined cloak, a steel-grey tunic and pants and boots and a deep-red fiberglass helmet. I hope it looks as good as it feels to wear. And, yes, Magneto has a wide metallic belt as X-Men fans would expect."

Here's a bit about the makeup for Sabretooth and Toad, "Magneto's closest brethren are Sabretooth and Toad - hirsute Tyler Mane striding out at 7'4" and Ray Park, his complexion painted bright green. The makeup effects are achieved by a team led by AnnBrowdie, my compatriot whom I worked with on A Touch of Love, my first film. The makeup and hair trailer, specially designed to accommodate up to a dozen actors and technicians, is a nest amongst the jungle of vehicles that convey the film's support system. It is warm with efficient heating and good humour, melting early morning or late-night thespian grumps."

McKellen also talks about the rabid-fan interest in the movie and what a set visit might look like to a visitor. By the actor's description, watching the filming might well be very tedious. McKellen cautions eager fans, "Be content - keep away from the set and wait for the film to reach you onscreen. Then you will know where to look."

Corona Coming Attractions has learned that teaser trailers for the X-Men movie will be seen by moviegoers on December 17th. The trailers are set to run in front of Disney's Bicentennial Man.

The site also reports that URL for the official X-Men movie website is said to be, http://www.x-men-the-movie.com. The domain is currently inactive, but a domain registry query reveals that it is, in fact registered to Marvel (as are the variants http://www.x-men-themovie.com and http://www.xmen-themovie.com).

ASTRO BOY/SCUD

A source at Henson Pictures told Comics 2 Film that Tim Burton (Sleepy Hollow) has not been approached to direct the upcoming Astro Boy. "We'd obviously love him to direct it, and maybe at some point we'd consider going to him," our source told us, "but right now we're just trying to work out the story."

Our source also told us that Rob Schrab (Scud: The Disposable Assassin) is still working on a "giant robot" movie screenplay for Henson. However, that work is unrelated to both Scud and the recently reported Robot Bastard.

SUPERMAN: THE MENACE OF METALLO

The latest in superman animated programming debuted this week but you won't see it on your TV screen. The first installment of Superman: The Menace of Metallo, a web-based animated serial, may now be seen on the newly launched Entertaindom website. The Superman serial is the first of many "Multi-Path Movies" which may will be seen on the website

The movie is populated by a 3D computer animated actors, much like the ones seen in popular video games like Tomb Raider or Quake. The Multi-Path Movies allow the viewer to select difference scenes as the story progresses, rather than watching the movie in a linear fashion. We found that most of the offshoot scenes featured different characters delivering soliloquies about their respective roles in the story.

BLADE 2

Ain't it Cool News ran what is said to be a review of David Goyer's screenplay for the Blade sequel. The screenplay is titled Blade 2: Bloodhunt. The reviewer gave the work high marks. The story centers around a creature which is as threatening to vampires as it is to humans. According the report, Blade teams up with a group of vampire warriors called the Bloodpack to oppose the deadly creature.

BRUCE WAYNE

Rob Allstetter of the The Comics Continuum reports that a live-action television pilot called Bruce Wayne is under consideration at the WB network. Unnamed sources claim such a show would feature young Wayne traveling the world and training for his role as a crime fighter. According to the report, the show may be tied in with plans for the much-rumored Batman: Year One feature.

DOC SAVAGE

Arnold Schwarzenegger is set to follow up his recently released End of Days with the Phoenix Picture's The Sixth Day according to the Hollywood Reporter. Sixth is slated to begin filming on December 8th. Following that, the actor has committed to star in the Warner Bros. thriller Collateral Damage, which lenses July 1 of next year. According to the article, the actor will follow that movie with either True Lies 2 or Doc Savage: Man of Bronze.

HELLHOLE/BALL AND CHAIN

Scott Lobdell spoke with Rob Allstetter of the The Comics Continuum about the movie version of his comic book Hellhole. The writer said that he had turned in the first draft of the script and was awaiting notes from Miramax.

Lobdell also said that his comic book Ball and Chain is being considered by Cruise-Wagner, Tom Cruise's production company. As a bit of trivia, the writer told The Continuum that the name of the lead male character in that comic was changed from Thomas to Edgar on the possibility that Cruise would be playing that role and would not want the character to have the same first name as the actor.

INVISIBLES

Corona Coming Attractions reports that an adaptation of Grant Morrison's The Invisibles may be back on. You may recall that Morrison was developing the concept as a BBC mini-series but that project reportedly ran aground.

However, a new scooper claims that an Invisibles feature film may be in the works and Artisan Entertainment (Blair Witch Project) may be involved. CCA was unable to verify this information, so lets consider it rumor for now.

KABUKI

David Mack spoke with Rob Allstetter of the The Comics Continuum about progress on the movie version of his Kabuki comic. Catherine Winder (Aeon Flux, Spawn animated show) will produce the movie which is set up at Fox Animation. Mack reports that he's turned in four drafts of the screenplay for the feature, which is based on the Skin Deep and Circle of Blood story lines. The animated feature may be released in 2002.

MAGE

Kevin Smith (Dogma) has long been attached to write, and possibly direct, a movie adaptation of Matt Wagner's Mage. Corona Coming Attractions recently spoke to Smith about the project. According to Smith, the producers Critical Mass Entertainment may have moved the film from Miramax and may be looking for a new home for it. "I think I'm still going to write it no matter where it lands," Smith told CCA. "And I think...they took it to another studio, and I guess they're finalizing their deal, and presumably I'll take a stab at adapting it, which isn't too tough, because it's a really well-written piece. So once it's final somewhere, once it's locked in somewhere, I guess then I'll come up and do what I was supposed to do."

The Rejected Todd McFarlane Version of a G.I. Joe Classic

More in CBR Exclusives