Producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura on G.I. Joe and Transformers 2 Delay
Our friends over at IESB caught up with producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura and spoke with him about all things G.I. Joe, Transformers 2, and more. The casting announcement, including Marlon Wayans and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, that Eli reported on just the other day has caused quite a stir amongst G.I. Joe fans and film fanatics alike. In addition, the writers strike has been rumored to be causing delays with Transformers 2. Di Bonaventura updates fans on both of these two issues.
With G.I. Joe, they're attempting to pull another Transformers and are going all out to revamp this 80's franchise into something spectacular. If you've followed all the casting announcements so far, you'll know that Sienna Miller, Rachel Nichols, Ray Park, Byung-hun Lee have already joined the cast. In the most recent announcement, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Marlon Wayans have also officially joined. Di Bonaventura replies to a question about Marlon Wayans and attempts to justify their decision.
"Well, let's talk about Marlon for a second. A lot of people are fans of his from the comedic point of view obviously for all the right reasons, but what I think everybody forgets about is how damn good he was in Requiem for a Dream as an actor. And, when we were trying to figure out who would be the right element to make this combination work of Duke as the leader and Ripcord as the best friend who sorta gets Duke in trouble all the time and Duke has to bail him out all the time and have fun with him, we needed a guy who's gonna be funny and we needed a guy who was going to be a good actor. And we went to Marlon and said, 'We'd love to talk to you.' And he's a gigantic GI Joe fan and immediately asked, 'is Cobra in it, is Destro in it?' I mean before he even got to read the script he was so much fun to talk to because he understood what it was. So he got it immediately, and when we did the test, you know, we all looked at each other and the studio and there isn't one person who didn't think it was a no-brainer. So, from our point of view, he's playing a military character who's got some real good quips but he's got to be good, he's got to be physical, and I mean Marlon is a strapping guy, he's got good size to him. So, I think the fans will feel, when they see him, that he is playing the solider that they anticipate anyone from the G.I. Joe group to be."
He also goes on to mention that Destro and Zartan will both be in the movie, but have yet to be 100% cast, although they're in negotations with a couple of actors. And also in regards to the character of Duke, he adds "Duke is absolutely the embodiment of what the pre-83 Joe is. And what the pre-83 Joe is The Real American Hero…" I'm still not 100% confident that this will be as good of an 80's revamp as Transformers, but it sounds like it's certainly coming together in a good way.
As for the Transformers sequel, a rumor has been floating around recently claiming that the film has been delayed from its mid-2009 release because of the writers strike. Although they're still aiming for a June start date, di Bonaventura does confirm that there isn't even a script yet.
"We're nowhere because of the strike, we won't know until we come back. We have a very fine outline and we know exactly where we want go with the movie but until this writers strike comes back, we'll find out exactly where we are. Michael is completely on top of every detail. He's designed a lot of great stuff already. He's got a lot of great sequences imagined but you know, he needs some writers to work with before he's ready to go, so I would say June 2nd is an unofficial start, it's the target date we'd like to go for but, you know, we've got to get some writers to help us."
From the sounds of it, as long as the writers strike doesn't last too much longer, this could still make its mid-2009 release date. However, putting both G.I. Joe and Transformers up against each other might not be a great idea.
Lots of juicy details for plenty of fans with this interview. I'd suggest if you're a big G.I. Joe fan at all, that you head over to IESB and read the complete interview, as he goes over even more details. We'll be back again to report on any more official updates for either of the movies when they arrive. Stay tuned!