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We knew it was coming, as George Miller is already confirmed for more Mad Max sequels along with Tom Hardy, but the title for the next Mad Max movie might have been revealed. Hidden in the George Miller episode of The Q&A with Jeff Goldsmith podcast (found via The Playlist), Miller discusses the plans for the expanded Mad Max universe now that Rockatansky is back in Fury Road. "We've got one screenplay and a novella. It happened because with the delays [on Fury Road] and writing all the backstories, they just expanded." So what's the next title? Mad Max: The Wasteland. Bring it on. Furiosa better be in it, too.
Now that you've seen it, what did you think? "What a lovely day!" Finally, after years and years of waiting, it's here. George Miller's long-awaited new entry into the Mad Max franchise titled Mad Max: Fury Road. This dusty new post-apocalyptic chase movie introduces a new Max, played by Tom Hardy, as well as another hero - Furiosa, played by Charlize Theron. These two unlikely partners lead a band of rebels on a chase across a desert run by deadly scavengers, driving vehicles like you've never seen. The cast also includes Nicholas Hoult, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Zoë Kravitz and Hugh Keays-Byrne as Immortan Joe. Once you've seen it, leave a comment with your thoughts on Miller's Mad Max: Fury Road.
Another day, another remake. Or this time a reboot. Or whatever the heck it will be. Deadline is reporting that Warner Bros is now in development on a new version of The Fugitive, working with producers Arnold and Anne Kopelson who helped make the first one. The Fugitive movie every knows, the one with Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones from 1993, was actually adapted from a TV series from the 1960s. The report mentions it'll be a movie, with Christina Hodson (The Eden Project, Shut In) writing the script, but that's about it as details are sparse on what exactly it is beyond a new take. Maybe they want Harrison Ford back?
What a lovely day! Warner Bros lifted the embargo on press reactions/reviews early on Monday this week before the release of George Miller's long-awaited, highly anticipated Mad Max: Fury Road in theaters this weekend. The film was screened for press a few weeks ago, and they all pretty much lost their minds, but had to wait and hold their tongues until today. My own effusive tweet is included in these, as I loved it too, and I wanted to collect a look at all of the great buzz the film is getting. As of writing this, it has a 97% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and I'm sure it'll stay fresh. Because it's so !@#$ing awesome! I've already got tickets to see it again on Thursday. This should be your cue to make plans for Fury Road this weekend.
Ever wondered why the PG-13 rating is such an annoying middle-ground? Do you know the full history of the PG-13 rating involving Gremlins and Temple of Doom? If not, or maybe if you do already, then dive in and check out this intriguing animated video essay about "[the] Brief History of [the] PG-13 Rating". Made by the folks at The Dissolve, this video explores why and how the rating came about, and how we got to the point today where one "f*ck" is acceptable, but most other language is not, and certain violence sets off red flags and so on. There's also a fun making-of featurette embedded below to go with the video. Enjoy!
Briefly: Marvel is following up with some big news they've been holding onto, waiting until Avengers: Age of Ultron has opened in theaters. The next movie they're making is Captain America: Civil War, which while is a sequel to Captain America: The Winter Soldier, it continues after Age of Ultron and seems to be more of a setup for Infinity War down the line. We've been writing about casting for months (including Martin Freeman this week) but now they've confirmed a complete synopsis and complete cast. And included in the cast is one Paul Rudd as Scott Lang/Ant-Man, along with Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther.
It's nothing major, but it is another official confirmation from Lucasfilm. This time the studio has confirmed to Vanity Fair that they definitely are developing another new Indiana Jones movie – it will "one day be made". Ever since Disney bought Lucasfilm, we've been hearing rumors and rumblings of another Indiana Jones that might continue where Kingdom of the Crystal Skull left off, or reboot the series altogether. Over the years we've heard names like Bradley Cooper and Chris Pratt mentioned as potential replacements, but again nothing is confirmed yet. In fact, Lucasfilm's Kathleen Kennedy went so far as to say that they haven't even started working on a script yet. Too early for anything to actually come together, only ideas for now.
Woot! Lionsgate has officially announced development on John Wick 2 via a press release sent to press on May 4th. The release contains very basic information, but confirms that everyone is back: Keanu Reeves as John Wick, along with directors David Leitch and Chad Stahelski as well as screenwriter Derek Kolstad all returning. The film is being sold at the Cannes Market coming up this month, which is why the news has arrived as a confirmation like this. No information about release timing is included in the press release, but it sounds like it might go quick if things go well in Cannes. As a huge fan of John Wick from last year (it was in my Top 10!) there's something particularly exciting about knowing more Wick is on the way.
Briefly: As much as I hate reporting on the non-news that someone is no longer working on a project they were originally attached to work on, if it involves Star Wars, it's still worth mentioning. StarWars.com and Variety are reporting that Lucasfilm has officially announced and confirmed that Josh Trank (director of Chronicle and this year's Fantastic Four reboot) will no longer be directing a Star Wars spin-off movie. Not long after Gareth Edwards got the first offer for Star Wars: Rogue One, due in theaters late 2016, Trank landed the gig to direct the next spin-off solo Star Wars movie due in 2018. However, he's been booted and Disney/Lucasfilm are going back to the drawing board - no replacements have been named yet. Interesting…
Now that you've seen it, what did you think? "There is only one path to peace… your extinction." Now playing around the world is Marvel Studio's Avengers: Age of Ultron, the highly-anticipated sequel to Joss Whedon's The Avengers from 2012. The whole cast is back for a superhero team-up unlike anything, but this time the villain is a creation of their own. Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner, Chris Evans as Cap, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, Don Cheadle as War Machine, Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Quicksilver, Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlet Witch and Paul Bettany as Vision. Directed by Joss Whedon. So how is it? Better than the first? Once you've seen it, leave a comment with your thoughts on Avengers: Age of Ultron.
More? Oh yes. Not only are they building Avatar land at Disney's Animal Kingdom, but they're working on no less than three Avatar sequels. We've known about these plans for a while. But wait, just how much of a story does James Cameron want to tell? Possibly even more than we imagined. Our friends at HeyUGuys recently sent us a tip from a talk with composer James Horner where he actually mentions another script, for a fifth Avatar movie. Yes, you read that right – five, but it's actually not five movies, rather – Cameron has four scripts he's trying to condense into three movies. So there's really four more? This is all a bit crazy.
Lasers. They're the future of cinema, so you better get used to it. I've been attending CinemaCon (formerly ShoWest), the movie theater owners' convention, for the last 9 years and have seen many fantastic technical demos. One year James Cameron came and showed us his first look at High Frame Rates; one year Dolby introduced their (now everywhere) Atmos sound system with a custom install in a big auditorium where we get to see screenings. This year, Dolby held a demo of their latest offering - a system called Dolby Vision (we've written about it recently). It runs on two 4K laser projectors and they claimed that the contrast ratio they were getting up to is 1,000,000:1. Most cinemas today are barely 2,000:1. It was mesmerizing to see.
Can it be done? Can (and will) a movie studio successfully market a major movie without any trailers or clips or actual footage from the movie? (And I don't mean a tiny indie that becomes a big hit.) That's the question bouncing around my head this week, augmented by all the marketing madness occurring at the CinemaCon convention (where movie studios go all out showing movie theater owners their slate for the upcoming year). With the release of the latest Tomorrowland trailer this week, the discussion has restarted on Twitter about not watching any trailers at all any more, a growing movement among dedicated movie lovers. So, that makes me wonder: is marketing a movie successfully without spoiling any footage possible?
"For more than a thousand generations, the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic. Before the dark times, before the Empire…" Plenty of new details about the expanded Star Wars universe revealed, as the Star Wars Celebration event in Anaheim ended with a panel featuring director Gareth Edwards. After bring us Godzilla, Gareth is next set to direct the first "spin-off" solo Star Wars movie after Disney bought Lucasfilm and brought back Star Wars. It was revealed recently that the title of the December 2016 film would be Rogue One, but during the panel they played a very early, brief teaser trailer for Rogue One that featured a different title. Star Wars Anthology: Rogue One is what the title card shows in that, but we also know more details about the plot - and it's not really about X-Wings.