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RDJ Was the Only Avenger to Read the Entire Endgame Script

The Russo Brothers reveal that the only Avengers star to receive a full script for Endgame was Robert Downey Jr., the MCU’s original leading man. After nearly a year of waiting, next week will see Marvel Studios and Disney finally release Avengers: Endgame to theaters. To call Endgame the most widely anticipated movie of 2019 would be an understatement, as millions of fans can’t wait to find out just how the remaining Avengers members will manage to undo the effects of Thanos’ snap, and just who will make it out of the MCU’s third phase alive.

Thanks to circulated knowledge about various MCU actor contracts, many are wondering if Endgame will be the end of the road for original Avengers cornerstones Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor, at least as we currently know them. Putting aside the fact that much of what’s been reported online about MCU contracts has never officially been confirmed by the actors themselves or Marvel, if the contracts of Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, and Chris Hemsworth are in fact up after Endgame, that still doesn’t necessarily mean their characters will die. After all, they could always sign new deals if they so choose, or leave things open to return down the road.

Related: Last 8 Minutes Of Avengers: Endgame Are The Best In Entire MCU, Says RDJ

Whether or not Avengers: Endgame really will be the last time RDJ dons the Iron Man suit onscreen, he’s sure to play a pivotal role in defeating Thanos, just as he has for the entire MCU chronology. So trusted is Downey that during a recent interview with Rotten Tomatoes, the Russos revealed that he was the only actor to be allowed to read the full script for Endgame. As always, being Iron Man has its perks.

In the same interview, the Russos admit that Chris Evans might’ve also gotten a full script, but the only one they’re completely positive got the whole thing is Downey. This is of course the opposite approach to how the Russos treated Spider-Man actor Tom Holland, who’s become so notorious for letting spoilers slip that the directors felt forced to not even tell him the character he was acting opposite of in many cases. Other actors received partial copies of the script that included only scenes where they speak. The Russos clearly aren’t messing around when it comes to spoilers being revealed early.

One wonders if the fact that RDJ got the full script when other Endgame stars didn’t should be cause for concern about the fate of Tony Stark. That’s of course just speculation, but it’s not hard to imagine Downey being given the opportunity to read the entire script that contains the death of his now signature character. It’s fair to say that most MCU devotees are hoping against hope that Tony Stark makes it out of Avengers: Endgame with his life, and returns to settle down with Pepper Potts. We’ll all finally find out next week.

More: Every Avengers: Endgame Trailer, TV Spot & Clip

Source: Rotten Tomatoes


2019-04-18 03:04:41

Michael Kennedy

Star Wars 9: JJ Abrams Met With George Lucas Before Writing Script

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker director J.J. Abrams reveals he met with George Lucas prior to writing the script. Following Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm, Lucas is no longer officially involved with the development of any of the new Star Wars movies. He did spend some time working on an outline for a sequel trilogy, but those ideas were eventually discarded in favor of the current direction. Over time, several details about Lucas’ concepts have come out, and some of those (like Leia using the Force) were used in the actual movies.

Though Lucas isn’t writing, directing, or producing the films anymore, that doesn’t mean his input isn’t valued by those who are tasked with bringing the galaxy far, far away to life. The Rise of Skywalker, after all, serves as the culmination of a nine-movie arc that Lucas himself started more than 40 years ago, meaning it has to (at least partially) tie into those earlier films. And to make sure he kept Episode IX on the right track, Abrams decided to consult Lucas before he went to work.

Related: Would George Lucas’ Sequel Trilogy Have Been Better?

In an interview with MTV, Abrams talked about everything The Rise of Skywalker needs to accomplish in order to go down as a successful film. Understanding the magnitude of the undertaking, Abrams felt it would be a good thing to pick Lucas’ brain:

“I feel that the story we told, the goal for this movie, the job was to end not just this trilogy – and just to make a stand-alone film, of course it needs to work in that way too – but to end nine films, three trilogies. And so the job was to look at all of them, including [The Last Jedi], and ask ourselves, ‘What is the inevitability? Where is this going?’ There have been a lot of ideas since the beginning, since George [Lucas] first came up with this, of where things could go [in the last film]. We had a meeting with him before we even wrote the script about [The Rise of Skywalker].”

Of course, Abrams couldn’t get into any details about what he and Lucas discussed, but odds are Palpatine was part of the conversation. The overarching villain of the saga makes his surprise return in Episode IX, so Abrams might have wanted to see if Lucas had any input in regards to that story thread. After all, it was Lucas who came up with the story of Darth Plagueis, which was about dark side users obtaining the power to cheat death. Considering the plan all along was to make Palpatine the big bad for Episode IX, Abrams was doing his due diligence here to make sure his Rise of Skywalker script honored what Lucas had done on the previous installments. While there was a concentrated effort in Force Awakens marketing to distance the new films from the prequels, Lucasfilm definitely hasn’t had any qualms about integrating ideas from that maligned trilogy into the modern films. If this is the payoff for the entire Skywalker saga, Episode IX needs to pull from all corners of it.

This isn’t to say Lucas helped write the screenplay or had an overt hand in The Rise of Skywalker’s development. But it’s still nice to hear Abrams didn’t shut Lucas out entirely and made sure the creator of Star Wars was involved in some capacity. Specifics about their meeting likely won’t come until the film premieres, but perhaps by then, it’ll be confirmed Lucas had a key role in crafting a scene or two. After all, at least one of his ideas for Solo: A Star Wars Story made it into the finished movie.

More: Star Wars 9 Theory: Grey Jedi Exist, But They’re Called Skywalkers

Source: MTV


2019-04-18 01:04:36

Chris Agar

Bond 25 Reportedly Brings In Phoebe Waller-Bridge to Punch Up Script

Bond 25 is reportedly bringing in Phoebe Waller-Bridge to punch up the script. The latest entry in the 007 series is set for an April 2020 release date, with a recent report revealing that some filming on the as-of-yet titled latest Bond film took place in Norway at the start of this month.

The road to production has been a long one for Bond 25, with numerous headaches cropping up before Daniel Craig had even agreed to return as James Bond. No sooner had the uncertainty regarding Craig’s return quieted down, however, that Bond 25 lost director Danny Boyle. Sin Nombre director Cary Fukunaga eventually replaced Boyle and everything now seems to be back on track. Of course, it’s no easy task getting all the right elements together on any film production, but when it comes to James Bond, the sheer enormity of the franchise and the degree of expectation from fans and critics alike seems to make everything that much more challenging.

Related: James Bond Producers Want Scottish Actor As Next 007

The latest indication that Bond 25 still needs a little boost in getting off the ground comes to us courtesy of The Guardian. A new report indicates that Phoebe Waller-Bridge, creator of the stage play and TV series Fleabag, as well as the voice of L3-37 in last year’s Solo: A Star Wars Story, has been asked to “liven up” the current Bond 25 script. What’s more, this request apparently comes at the behest of Craig.

To date there has been no confirmation that Waller-Bridge is, in fact, getting to work on the script, but sources close to the film have said that Waller-Bridge and Craig met in New York while Waller-Bridge completed her off-Broadway run of Fleabag. As a fan of Fleabag and the work of Waller-Bridge, Craig is reportedly looking to inject a little more humor and edge into the script and Waller-Bridge seems to be just the person to do it. Should Waller-Bridge be confirmed as the next writer to polish the current script, she will become only the second woman in the illustrious franchise’s existence to work on a James Bond script. The only other woman to hold that honor is Johanna Harwood, who worked on the very first two films in the Bond franchise, 1962’s Dr. No and its 1963 follow-up, From Russia With Love.

There’s no need at this point for Bond fans to be concerned over the state of the upcoming film’s script or the production itself. Many films undergo somewhat last minute polishing or re-writes and turn out absolutely fine. In this case in particular, Waller-Bridge’s work on Fleabag has served to highlight her substantial talent and gift for drawing out the subtleties in human interaction and the impact those interactions can have as a result. With Bond becoming more aware of himself and the people around him in recent films, Waller-Bridge is definitely someone who can remove any stuffy, wooden characteristics that the script may have, ultimately lending it a more realistic and human quality – something that should suit Bond 25 very well indeed.

Related: The 6 Best James Bond Villains (And The 5 Worst)

Source: The Guardian


2019-04-14 05:04:04

Mike Jones

Robert Pattinson Read Christopher Nolan’s ‘Unreal’ Script in Locked Room

Director Christopher Nolan’s next movie is so top secret that when star Robert Pattison first read the script, he was actually locked in a room to ensure nobody else got a peek. Since Warner Bros. confirmed back in January that Nolan’s next movie would have a July 2020 release, the project has been cloaked in mystery. Apart from being drip-fed a few nuggets of intel regarding casting and shooting dates, things have been very hush-hush. Naturally, all the secrecy has had Nolan fans and the wider film community wondering just what the director has in store next.

Reportedly described by a production insider as “a massive, innovative action blockbuster,” the much-anticipated mystery movie will be Nolan’s first since the release of his critically acclaimed World War II drama Dunkirk in 2017. Just a few weeks ago it was reported that Pattinson would star in Nolan’s next movie, but it seems the actor will be keeping just as tight-lipped as everyone else involved with the project.

Related: Every Christopher Nolan Movie Ranked, From Worst To Best

According to USA Today, Pattinson has been “sworn to secrecy” with Nolan and the rest of the production team, even going so far as to lock him in a room while he was reading the movie’s script to prevent it from being leaked. The actor, whose recent credits include Claire Denis’ sci-fi film High Life and the crime film Good Time, stated, “I got locked in a room to read the script – I don’t have it myself.” Pattinson joins fellow cast members confirmed to star in the mystery film including Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’s Elizabeth Debicki and BlacKkKlansman’s John David Washington, who were presumably also locked in a room to read the top secret script and didn’t get to keep their own copy either.

Despite those extreme measures, Pattinson – who is also starring in a few forthcoming 2019 releases including Robert Eggers’ new horror The Lighthouse and historical Netflix drama The King – doesn’t seem put off. In fact, it looks like he’s very excited to start working with Nolan, a director it seems the actor admires greatly He said:

“I’ve been a little wary of doing big movies for years and years, but there’s just something about Chris Nolan’s stuff. He seems like the only director now who can do what is essentially a very personal, independent movie that has huge scale. I read the script and it’s unreal.”

Pattinson calling the script “unreal” is certainly encouraging news, but we’re all still largely in the dark about Nolan’s new film. A couple of years ago, Nolan said he was done with superhero movies, so a film in a similar vein to his much-loved Dark Knight trilogy can probably be ruled out. Recently, it was revealed the movie would feature a globe-spanning adventure involving the time continuum, which had fans wondering if it might be more along the lines of Nolan’s Inception or Interstellar, minus the outer space setting. We’ll find out when it’s released summer 2020, but until then the speculation continues.

Next: Christopher Nolan Is The Reason For Modern Hollywood’s Problems

Source: USA Today


2019-04-07 06:04:31

Helen Armitage

WB May Recast Flash, Ezra Miller Writing His Own Script in Attempt to Keep Role

Ezra Miller may be recast as the star of The Flash unless the darker script he’s writing can change Warner Bros. and DC Films’ minds. Miller joined the DC fold a few years back as part of Zack Snyder’s vision for a larger DC universe when he first cameoed in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. As his role in the world grew, though, plans for a solo movie had trouble settling into place.

The project went through several different directors before Game Night’s John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein were hired last year. Despite the promise of their addition, The Flash has not found it any easier to get off the ground. The multiple delays have frustrated those eager to see Miller’s take on Barry Allen given star treatment instead of a supporting role like he had in Justice League. Now, we may know why the film has taken so long to get off the ground, as Miller may be recast in the role.

Related: Every Superhero Movie That Was Supposed To Release In 2018 (But Didn’t)

The news comes from THR who report that Miller’s days as Barry Allen may be numbered. The star reportedly does not see eye-to-eye with the take that Daley and Goldstein have, which has resulted in him teaming up with comic book writer Grant Morrison to write a new script for the Scarlet Speedster’s solo film. Warner Bros. agreed to let Miller write his own draft of the script that could be done by next week, but if they don’t take to Miller’s script, they will likely recast the role – unless he then agrees to stay on for Daley and Goldstein’s approach.

This last ditch effort by Miller to see his “darker” vision for Flash make it to the big screen will likely force WB to choose if they’d rather have Miller or Daley and Goldstein attached. They are now staring at the possibility of having to recast a third member of their original Justice League lineup, after Ben Affleck left as Batman and Henry Cavill’s days as Superman are reportedly over too. With Miller’s contract hold on The Flash expiring in May, it has put a countdown clock on resolving this matter. They just recast Will Smith’s Deadshot so that Idris Elba can take over the role, so Miller will need to deliver a can’t-miss script if he is going to stay on.

Since Daley and Goldstein’s reported light-hearted approach fits better with their plans for the future, it would appear that a recasting is the most likely outcome here. DC Films president Walter Hamada has not been afraid to stick to his guns and move the DC universe in a particular direction even if it means losing established stars. Since he’s been willing to let Affleck, Cavill, and Smith walk, it is difficult to see Miller being the one who gets his way when everything is said and done. Plus, if they did choose his script, then Daley and Goldstien would likely depart the project themselves.

While one does have to admire Miller’s own passion for the character and the project, this appears to simply be a case of him wanting to take the character one way and the studio looking the other way. With recent reports pointing to a late 2019 start to production on The Flash, it will be much easier for the studio to recast Barry Allen than find new directors who can bring Miller’s script to life. Should the role become available, it will quickly become one of the biggest available gigs for a young actor in the superhero movie landscape.

MORE: Removing The Snyder Movies From Canon Solves The DCEU’s Problems

Source: THR


2019-03-15 06:03:31

Cooper Hood

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween Interview – R.L. Stine

Halloween is just around the corner, and to celebrate the spookiest holiday of the year there’s a new Goosebumps movie arriving in theaters – Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween. The movie features a new cast of kids – played by Jeremy Ray Taylor (IT), Caleel Harris (Castle Rock), and Madison Iseman (Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle) – who discover a lost Goosebumps book in a hidden room and unwittingly unleash a new season of terror, as Slappy the Dummy brings Halloween costumes to life and wreaks havoc on the city.

Jack Black reprises his role as Goosebumps author R.L. Stine in Haunted Halloween , so to celebrate the movie’s release, Screen Rant spoke to the real R.L. Stine to find out about the new monsters on parade, and ask whether Black’s curmudgeonly portrayal of the author is accurate.

Related: Watch the Trailer For Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween

I have to ask, because the movie’s about a secret Goosebumps book hidden in a box – is there actually a secret Goosebumps book somewhere out there?

R.L. Stine: No. I wish [laughs]. I wish there were some extra ones somewhere that I could pull out. No, no secret book… But it’s kind of creepy, these two boys go into this house and knock over something and find this book and it’s locked, and they unlock it. And that starts all the action. All the horrible action.

Are there any Goosebumps monsters in this movie that we didn’t see in the last one?

Stine: Well, there are gummy bears [laughs]. They didn’t have gummy bears. After the first one I said, “How will we ever do a sequel? You used every single monster in the first movie!” There was nothing left. But yes, there are some. There’s an ogre, for one thing. We didn’t have an ogre in the first one. And my very favorite scene is the one with the gummy bears. Cute little gummy bears and then they turn into monsters.

But they’re so cute, what harm could they possibly do?

Stine: Well, they grow teeth for one thing. And then they all stick together and become a huge blob and attack people. It’s a wonderful scene [laughs]. Very proud of that!

It seems like there aren’t a lot of scary movies aimed at kids, since so many horror movies involve blood and gore. Is there a special trick to terrifying kids?

Stine: No, it’s the same as for grown-ups, I think. I think it’s surprise, it’s travelling into the unknown where you don’t really know what’s next and you can’t see what’s coming up, and it’s a lot of twists and turns. I think it’s the same as doing horror for adults.

There’s a whole new cast of kids in this movie. Can you tell us a bit about them?

Stine: Well, there’s a delightful boy who’s building a replicas of Tesla’s lab, because Tesla’s real lab is actually in their town. And he’s fiddling with the electricity and he keeps blowing out all the electricity in the house, but he’s determined to do it. And his doing this leads to an amazing scene near the end at Tesla’s real lab. It’s a real Frankenstein type lab. I went to Atlanta, where we filmed the film… and they showed me these sets. These guys are geniuses! They built this amazing Frankenstein’s lab… I couldn’t believe what these guys could build. It was incredible.

So Slappy the Dummy is the ringleader in this movie again. What is it about Slappy that people love so much?

Stine: I don’t really get it [laughs]. I don’t know why a dummy coming to life is so scary. But people are really frightened of him, and he’s so popular now that every other Goosebumps book has to be a Slappy book. I think I’ve written about fourteen of them [laughs]. It doesn’t get any easier to think of plots about a dummy coming to life.

Maybe it’s also because he likes to insult people. People like comedy roasts, so maybe that’s why they like Slappy.

Stine: Well that’s why I like to write him – he’s really an insult comedian. That’s why I love writing him, because he’s so rude!

Do you think kids are easier to scare than adults, or harder?

Stine: Probably easier. Probably don’t have to work as hard to scare them. But you know, my audience – seven to twelve year-olds – I get them the last time in their lives they’ll ever be enthusiastic. And then when they turn twelve, they have to be cool… and they’re gone. But before then they love writing to an author, they love reading, they love hearing from you, they love going to things… it’s just the best audience.

Was Jack Black’s portrayal of you in the first movie accurate?

Stine: I love Jack. Not accurate at all! Nothing accurate. But he’s a great guy, I thought he was wonderful. He flew to New York in a blizzard to meet me, to try to figure out how he was going to play the character. And we had lunch and he was like, looking at me, right? [Laughs] And then he said, “Bob… what about the script is true about you?” And I said, “Nothing, not one thing, none of it’s true!” And he said, “I’m going to be a sinister version of you.” And that’s what he decided to do.. And then when it started filming he started talking like Orson Welles, right? He does, in that first film, and I said, “Jack, I’m from Ohio, I don’t sound like that!” But I thought it was really fun. What a weird thing, to be a character in a movie.

Seeing as, unlike Jack’s version of you, you don’t hate kids – is there a favorite interaction with a young fan that you’ve had?

Stine: I’ve had way too many. I’m just so lucky. Because I go out, I really talk to kids, I go to schools, and I really do like kids. And you know, I have a son and I have a grandson, who’s four and hilarious. And he’s taking after my son, he won’t read my books. That’s my son’s claim to fame, he never read one. Isn’t that horrible?

Does he tell you that all the time?

Stine: He bragged about it, how he never read one!

You should write him into a book so that he has to read it.

Stine: I did! I made him the star of a Fear Street book, it was a vampire book, and he was the star and he didn’t read that one either. In the very last paragraph of the book he gets bit in the neck. [Laughs] I got my revenge!

More: Read Screen Rant’s Review of Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween arrives in theaters this weekend.



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2018-10-11 04:10:45 – Hannah Shaw-Williams

Hobbs & Shaw Photo: Idris Elba’s Fast & Furious Villain Revealed

Dwayne Johnson has posted the first photo of Idris Elba as the villainous Brixton in the Fast & Furious spinoff, Hobbs and Shaw. The Rock has arguably become as central to the illegal street racing series-turned international juggernaut that is Fast & Furious as Vin Diesel, following his debut as Luke Hobbs from 2011’s Fast Five… and he has the box office receipts to prove it. Hence, it’s not surprising that Universal has decided to prioritize a spinoff movie that centers around Johnson’s character and pairs him opposite Jason Statham’s Deckard Shaw, especially after the two actors discovered they have crackling onscreen chemistry while filming last year’s Fate of the Furious.

Hobbs and Shaw officially began shooting last month, with David Leitch (Atomic Blonde, Deadpool 2) calling the shots from a script by Fast & Furious franchise writer/producer Chris Morgan. Not much is known about the film’s actual narrative, admittedly, but it’s probably fair to assume that Elba’s character is a suave British mercenary of sorts (Is there any other kind of British mercenary in the movies?) who’s out to profit from his terrorist ways. And of course, the only ones who stand in his way are Hobbs, Shaw, and Mission: Impossible – Fallout‘s Vanessa Kirby as (reportedly) Shaw’s sister, an MI-5 agent.

Related: Vanessa Kirby’s Hobbs & Shaw Character is ‘Absolutely the Boss’

Johnson published the first photo of Elba in character for Hobbs and Shaw on his Instagram account and, in doing so, confirmed the mysterious baddie’s name. Take a look in the space below:

Hobbs and Shaw‘s Brixton will be but the latest villain role in a major franchise movie that Elba adds to his belt, to go along with his voice work as the tiger Shere Khan in Disney’s live-action The Jungle Book remake and his performance as the antagonist Krall in Star Trek Beyond. As compelling as the actor can be when he’s playing the nobler type onscreen (even an extremely flawed hero like the DCI John Luther on the TV series Luther), he generally makes for an equally charismatic and engaging threat to the good guys in his big screen appearances.

The Fast & Furious movies have stepped up their own villain game over the past five years by bringing in top-tier talent like Luke Evans, Charlize Theron and – once upon a time – even Statham to take on the franchise’s heroes. However, with Elba stepping into Brixton’s (fancy) shoes, there’s a pretty good chance that Hobbs and Shaw will end up delivering the most memorable bad guy that the series has seen to date.

MORE: First Look at The Rock’s Fast & Furious Spinoff

Source: Dwayne Johnson





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2018-10-11 03:10:10 – Sandy Schaefer

Black Panther 2 Moving Forward With Ryan Coogler Set to Write & Direct

Ryan Coogler is confirmed to return to write and direct Black Panther 2. Marvel Studios found massive success earlier this year with the launch of Black Panther. It was the first MCU movie to star a person of color in Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa. The movie featured almost an entirely black cast and wound up receiving rave reviews, in addition to earning over $1 billion at the box office.

Due to the success, there’s been heavy speculation about the status of a sequel. There’s been no official word from Marvel Studios about where the movie stood, let alone the status of the film’s cast. However, the biggest focus for many was whether or not writer-director Ryan Coogler would return.

Related: Michael B. Jordan Open to Black Panther 2 Return

THR has now confirmed that Ryan Coogler is indeed returning to Wakanda. They’ve confirmed that he’ll write and direct Black Panther 2 for Marvel Studios. Production is currently expected to get started in late 2019 or early 2020.

Coogler returning to direct Black Panther 2 has been expected for some time, but now it is nice to finally have the confirmation that he’s returning. He’d signed up for other projects since Black Panther hit theaters, so he took his time deciding to return to Wakanda. Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige previously said he wanted Coogler to make the sequel. They’re doing just that with this announcement, as they may have wanted to get the sequel moving even quicker because of just how big of a hit the original was.

Now that Coogler is locked in for Black Panther 2, the hope to shoot the sequel in late 2019 or early 2020 will depend on a few things. The first will be Coogler finishing the script and getting it into the proper place to actually start production. Feige previously said they have a “pretty solid direction” for the sequel’s story, so this may just be a matter of Coogler putting pen to paper. The other major step that will need to be completed is actually aligning the franchise’s multiple stars’ busy schedules. Boseman is continuing to take on new projects, while breakout cast members like Winston Duke, Lupita Nyong’o, and Danai Gurira have also continued to book future movies.

Although Marvel has yet to confirm Coogler’s return or even that they’re making Black Panther 2, the longterm planning on their part clued many in on this timetable for the sequel. They previously dated untitled Marvel movies into 2022, and the February 2021 release date was quickly pointed to by many as Black Panther 2‘s likely landing spot. This reported production schedule should only reaffirm that belief. Of course, Marvel doesn’t plan on announcing any of their future projects officially until after Avengers 4 hits theaters, so it may still be several months before Coogler’s involvement and Black Panther 2‘s release date become officially official. But for now, his involvement has been confirmed by several sources and is a great step forward for the sequel.

MORE: Letitia Wright Wants Shuri to Become Black Panther

Source: THR



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2018-10-11 01:10:10 – Cooper Hood

Suicide Squad 2: Smallville Star Also Wants to Join James Gunn’s Sequel

Now that Warner Bros.’ Suicide Squad 2 has a surprising new writer in James Gunn, another one of his MCU stars, Michael Rosenbaum, wants to join him. Dave Bautista expressed interest in joining Suicide Squad 2 after Gunn came aboard to write and possibly direct, which isn’t too surprising since Bautista vehemently defended Gunn on social media after he was unceremoniously fired from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Whether or not more Marvel stars will throw their hat in the ring to join him remains to be seen, but considering how beloved the filmmaker is, it wouldn’t be so surprising.

After writing and directing both Guardians of the Galaxy and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 for Marvel, Gunn was slated to return for Guardians 3, but he was fired in July, after offensive tweets from a decade ago resurfaced online. Despite a number of people quickly jumping to his defense, Disney stood by their removal of Gunn, with the director’s longtime collaborator, Michael Rooker, even quitting Twitter after the firing. Disney hasn’t announced a replacement to take over Guardians 3 yet, but it seems several of the director’s stars are ready to jump ship and be a part of Warner Bros.’ DC Extended Universe (DCEU).

Related: Here’s What Happened To WB’s Original Suicide Squad 2 Plans

Rosenbaum took to Twitter last night to express his interest in signing on for Suicide Squad 2, stating, “Sign me up too.” The actor, who played Martinex in last year’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, was responding to a tweet by Bautista, who was the first to say he wanted to join Gunn’s movie. Bautista was also among the first to come to Gunn’s defense after his firing in July, and he even threatened to quit Guardians 3 in August, if Marvel didn’t at least use Gunn’s already-completed script for the film.

Sean Gunn, James’ brother, who plays Kraglin in the Guardians movies, confirmed in September that Marvel will use James Gunn’s Guardians 3 script, but his directorial replacement remains to be seen. There was hope, at one point, that the director and studio may be able to resolve their differences and bring Gunn back into the fold, but Disney CEO Bob Iger stood behind the firing in a statement he released in late September. There had even been talk before Gunn came aboard for Suicide Squad 2 that Warner Bros. was interested in Gunn, continuing what is becoming a bit of a tradition, with Warner Bros. snatching up talent from Marvel.

The DCEU’s biggest hit, Wonder Woman, was directed by Patty Jenkins, who was once set to direct Thor: The Dark World. Warner Bros. brought Joss Whedon over from the MCU to rewrite parts of the script and direct reshoots for Justice League, stepping in for Zack Snyder. And now, WB has poached Gunn. While the first Suicide Squad wasn’t well-received by many critics, this new project is said to be a much different take than David Ayer’s original. Whether or not Gunn can turn this franchise around remains to be seen, but it will be interesting to see if Gunn will try to bring over MCU actors like Bautista and Rosenbaum once the project moves further in development.

More: Suicide Squad Characters James Gunn Already Wanted To Work With

Source: Michael Rosenbaum





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2018-10-10 07:10:00 – Brian Gallagher

18 Best Sequels, According To Rotten Tomatoes (And 8 Stuck With 0%)

We live in an age where sequels are all the rage. Every major studio is chasing those franchises that can keep their cash flow healthy for years to come. Sometimes, they’re exhausting. Other times, they can be our most anticipated movies. Maybe we could do without more Transformers movies, but Marvel and Mission: Impossible sequels are event movies that drive us to the theater in droves.

Sequels are tricky and unpredictable, though. On one hand, they’re often necessary for expanding stories and the good ones continue sagas we want to see progress. On the other, some are soulless cash grabs that shouldn’t exist. In the worst cases, some of them completely derail promising franchises by failing to deliver the goods. Then again, in some instances, sequels can get a series back up and running after they’ve experienced setbacks.

This list will look at those rare sequels that are considered worthy — and even superior — follow-ups. Those rare beasts that make us grateful for multiple movies in a series. Furthermore, we’ll also be discussing the most maligned sequels that brought no critical good will to their respective franchises whatsoever. It’s more fun this way. In order to fully appreciate the best of the best, we also must acknowledge the worst of the worst. Without evil, we wouldn’t be able to understand all that’s good and pure. Without terrible movies, we wouldn’t be grateful for the good ones.

With this in mind, here are 18 Best Sequels According To Rotten Tomatoes (And 8 Stuck With 0%).

26 Best: Captain America: Civil War (91%)

The decision to keep the same team of writers for all three Captain America films paid off in the end. The trilogy just went from strength to strength with each passing entry, though some would argue that The Winter Soldier is equally as good — if not better — than Civil War. Either way, they’re both prime examples of how to do sequels right.

Civil War tackles the same themes you’d expect from a movie about a do-gooder like Cap, but where the film truly soars is during its wild third act. The airport showdown is the best action showdown in the MCU, and that’s saying something.

25 Worst: The Bad News Bears Go To Japan (0%)

If you didn’t know that sequels to The Bad News Bears exist then no one would think any less of you. While the first movie is a cult classic about an underdog baseball team, the sequels have faded from the collective memory with the passing of time, lost like tears in the rain. That’s for good reason.

None of the sequels are good, but The Bad News Bears Go To Japan is especially bad.

While the idea to relocate to Japan for a big game is good on paper, the sequel is just bland, forgettable, and was made to cash in on the brand name.

24 Best: Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens (93%)

Some fans argue that The Force Awakens is essentially a retread of A New Hope in many ways. However, clearly the critics and audiences didn’t necessarily agree, given its stellar Rotten Tomatoes score and its audience score of 87%, not to mention its impressive box office haul.

As far as Star Wars movies go, it hits the spot. The new characters are great, the return of some old faces is a trip down memory lane, and the story still made significant effort to push the franchise forward. In those regards, the film definitely succeeded.

23 Best: War for the Planet of the Apes (93%)

Anyone who has a problem with classics being rebooted needs to watch the most recent Planet of the Apes trilogy.  The finale pits the apes in a brutal battle against the humans, which leads to an epic confrontation between the Caesar the Ape and humanity’s ruthless colonel (played by an utterly wicked Woody Harrelson). As far as concluding trilogies goes, War for the Planet of the Apes has everything.

By no means is this a pleasant movie, but it is rewarding. And not only does it wrap up an epic story, but the film boasts some of the great CGI wizardry out there. The action is also ridiculously impressive and compelling, which is crazy considering it’s a movie about people versus monkeys.

22 Best: Logan (93%)

James Mangold’s Logan, the gloriously violent and heartbreaking farewell to Patrick Stewart’s Professor X and Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, is an all-timer. Taking cues from the Old Man Logan comics, the movie has just as much in common with neo-westerns as it does with superhero yarns, which makes for a gritty, character-driven elegy to characters many of us grew up with.

Logan deserves praise for going R-rated and taking some stylistic risks.

The movie is proof that audiences will still flock to see superhero movies with some edge. If you’re going to send off some icons, this is the way to do it.

21 Worst: Return to the Blue Lagoon (0%)

Considering that no one liked The Blue Lagoon (it currently holds a 9% rating on RT), why anyone would want to return to the franchise is beyond comprehension. Of course, every sequel is a perfect opportunity to right some old wrongs if handled with care. Unfortunately, this was not. The story follows two children who are marooned on a tropical island as the grow up and fall in love, etc. The characters don’t wear enough clothes either, which makes for some weird, uncomfortable viewing.

There are some unintentional laughs to be had at the poor script and performances.

Otherwise the Blue Lagoon isn’t a scenic cinematic paradise worth spending time in unless you want to punish yourself for some reason.

20 Best: The Dark Knight (94%)

Few superhero movies are ever regarded as anything more than popcorn fare. However, if there were ever a superhero movie that proved the genre could be prestige cinema, it would be The Dark Knight. Christopher Nolan’s take on Batman is an exploration of chaos and just how far people are willing to go to achieve their goal.

The Dark Knight — for better or worse when you consider how devoid of fun some DC movies have been since — also brought a gritty, realistic touch to the genre. The movie feels more like a Michael Mann crime saga than it does a story about superheroes versus their outlandishly evil counterparts.

19 Best: Finding Dory (94%)

In recent times, Pixar has been criticized for relying too heavily on sequels, but if it ain’t broke… Finding Dory was released 13 years after Finding Nemo, and it was a smash with critics and audiences alike.

Its 94% on Rotten Tomatoes is complemented by an 84% audience score.

Upon release Finding Dory was praised for being as funny and thought-provoking as the first movie, while also adding a new dimension to the story. As with any Pixar movie, Finding Dory can be appreciated by audiences of all ages. 

18 Worst: Staying Alive (0%)

No other actor on the planet has experienced a career of ups and downs like John Travolta has. When he broke out he had the world at his dancing feet. After that, his career experienced a downturn until it was resurrected briefly following Pulp Fiction until it ultimately plummeted when he started starring in movies like Battlefield Earth. Staying Alive was released in 1983 when Travolta was experiencing his first fall from grace. Following up a classic like Saturday Night Fever was never going to be easy, but it shouldn’t have been this difficult, either.

The sequel lacks the gritty realism of its predecessor, and instead tries to get by on dance sequences. What’s the point in dancing when we don’t care about who’s doing it?

17 Best: Creed (95%)

No franchise tends to remain compelling seven sequels in, but Creed is proof that the Rocky franchise is the rare exception. Granted, some Rocky movies aren’t exactly knockouts, but Creed got things back on track and showed that it’s game for a few more rounds.

By serving as both a sequel and a spin-off/soft reboot, Creed gave the franchise a breath of new life.

It passed the gloves on to Michael B. Jordan as the eponymous character.  Creed 2 is right around the corner. Let’s see if it can do what the original saga failed to do and deliver a second outing that’s as good as the inaugural entry.

16 Worst: Leprechaun 2 (0%)

The first Leprechaun movie doesn’t come close to being certified fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, so it should come as no surprise that the sequels didn’t receive any critical acclaim. Especially not the second movie, which no critic seemed to enjoy at all.

Here, the infamous critter resurfaces in Los Angeles to find a bride, which leads to him abducting a young woman and trying to claim her as his own. This isn’t high art by any means, nor does it try to be.

15 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (96%)

The Harry Potter books were an emotional roller coaster that affected millions of readers worldwide. Reliving those adventures on the big screen was also a great time to be alive, and the grand finale lived up to expectations. In the final installment of the saga about the Boy Who Lived and his fight against the forces of darkness, the ultimate showdown finally happens as our hero and his pals face off against Voldemort in Hogwarts castle.

It’s a true epic in every sense of the word.

As far as wrapping up the story goes, Death Hallows: Part 2 delivered the goods and gave us cinematic closure in style.

14 Worst: Looking Who’s Talking Now (0%)

Look Who’s Talking is a perfectly serviceable comedy that should never have received any sequels. In a bid to end to the trilogy on a high following the disappointing previous sequel, Look Who’s Talking Too, someone thought it would be a good idea to introduce talking dogs to the mix for the series’ swan song. 

Needless to say, Look Who’s Talking Now wasn’t the glorious goodbye the series was looking for, but at least the film did cast some cute dogs.

13 Best: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (97%)

The third installment of Sergio Leone’s influential Dollars trilogy, The Good, The Bad and the Ugly is the creme de la creme of spaghetti westerns. 

The story centers around two men who form an uneasy alliance following a scam.

This leads them on a quest as it turns out there’s money buried in the desert and they want to find it. However, they have to compete against another who won’t hesitate to put a bullet in them to claim the prize. On top of being one of the most acclaimed movies out there, the film has been hailed as a major influence on directors like Quentin Tarantino.

12 Best: The Godfather: Part II (97%)

The continuation of Francis Ford Coppola’s Best Picture-winning 1972 crime saga, The Godfather: Part II chronicles Michael Corleone’s further ascendency in organized crime while simultaneously taking us back to the past to explore his dad’s humble beginnings.

Like its predecessor, the sequel also won Best Picture and is hailed by many a critic and film buff as one of the best movies ever made. Whether it’s better than the original is up for debate, but they’re like two sides of the same coin. These movies set the bar for mob pictures, and to this day, other directors are still trying to recreate the formula.

11 Mad Max: Fury Road (97%)

Director George Miller was in his seventies when he unleashed Mad Max: Fury Road, but the energy and madness imbued in every frame of this extravaganza suggest a man half his age.

Maybe we’ll never see another Mad Max movie, but the world needs a Furiosa spin-off eventually.

Fury Road is essentially one non-stop chase that barely lets up from the get-go all the way to the climactic ending. Furthermore, it’s a movie that defied expectation by taking the focus away from the titular character and making Charlize Theron’s Furiosa the real hero of the adventure. 

10 Worst: Jaws: The Revenge (0%)

Is Jaws: the Revenge a good movie? Definitely not. Is it an entertaining movie, though? Definitely yes.

How many other movies have sharks that make a conscious decision to get revenge on the humans that wronged them? Not only that, but the shark here followed its target to the Bahamas from Massachusetts. And why would someone who wants to avoid sharks go to an island surrounded by ocean? The movie is illogical, silly, nonsense, but it does offer sheer entertainment value for bad movie buffs.

9 Best: Aliens (98%)

Alien and Aliens are quite different in some regards, but they complement each other perfectly. The first is an exercise in pure suspense and terror. The sequel, on the other hand, retains the horror elements but adds a lot more action to proceedings.

Aliens shows how to make a successful sequel: acknowledge what came before but don’t be afraid to bring some fresh ideas to the table.

James Cameron was on fire in the ’80s and he wasn’t afraid to make Ridley Scott’s baby his own.

8 Best: Mad Max 2: Road Warrior (98%)

While George Miller’s inaugural Mad Max caper is a cult classic, most film buffs would agree that a couple of the sequels are slightly superior. Taking nothing away from the first movie, Road Warrior is a vast improvement when it comes to world building and sheer action spectacle. The story follows the eponymous character as he helps a group of people steal oil from a tyrannical madman and his band of goons.

As far as cinematic thrill rides go, few movies are on par with Road Warrior. Here, Miller turned up the volume significantly by making the post-apocalyptic terrains feel more dangerous and the action sequences more gung-ho and grander in scale.

7 Best: Evil Dead 2 (98%)

Sam Raimi’s first Evil Dead movie was a huge achievement for independent filmmaking when it was released back in 1981. The movie still holds up to this day with its innovative camera work, effective scares, and excellent cast as well.

The sequel is a triumph in its own right.

While the first movie contained moments of dark comedy, the sequel amps up the zaniness to become what is essentially the splatter flick equivalent of a Laurel and Hardy flick. For 90 minutes, Bruce Campbell is tormented by laughing ornaments and his own severed hand. As silly as that sounds, Evil Dead 2 still manages to pack more punch than your average MMA fighter.

6 Worst: Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol (0%)

In the third installment of the Police Academy franchise, the cops are understaffed and in need of some help. Naturally, the force turns to America’s civilians to help aid in their mission. Things don’t go smoothly, for the characters in the film and the movie itself.

Rotten Tomatoes describes Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol as “Utterly, completely, thoroughly and astonishingly unfunny” and  a movie which sent “a once-innocuous franchise plummeting to agonizing new depths.” That sounds about right.

5 Toy Story 3 (99%)

Few franchises manage to strike three home runs in a row. Even The Godfather stuttered when it came to the third outing. Toy Story, on the other hand, never ceases to replicate the magic time and time again.

This emotional installment sees Andy get ready to leave for college and neglect his old toys.

He’s all grown up and has no use for them anymore, and what ensues is what is by far the most heartfelt movie in the series.

4 Worst: Highlander II: The Quickening (0%)

As far as pure entertaining action-fantasy goes, the first Highlander movie is a fun slice of popcorn entertainment that aficionados of cult cinema lose their head over. The sequel, meanwhile, is an incomprehensible mess.

Highlander II is too overplotted to explain, but the cusp of the story revolves around the hero from the first movie taking on a corporation after being led to believe that they don’t have the world’s best interests in mind. In this one, our hero is a defender of the ozone as well. What makes Highlander II so awful is that it completely retcons everything good about the original film and the mythology it introduced.

3 Best: The Bride of Frankenstein (100%)

We all desire to be loved by someone special– even bolt-head monsters made up of the remains of other people. But to find them a mate, one must dig up some more corpses and create a suitable partner that’s similar in genetic make-up. This is also the storyline behind James Whale’s 1935 masterpiece, Bride of Frankenstein.

There are too many Frankenstein movies to keep track of at this point, but this sequel remains the pinnacle of the original series.

The movie is a masterpiece that successfully blends campy fun with Gothic beauty and genuine chills that’s stood the test of time as a result.

2 Paddington 2 (100%)

No one expected the the first Paddington to be as good as it is. That movie is a bona fide classic in the making in its own right, but the sequel is some next-next level brilliance.

Paddington 2 sees the lovable bear go to prison and, unsurprisingly, all the mean criminals fall in love with him as well. Critics, like the fictional convicts, were also full of praise for the titular bear and his second big onscreen adventure as well. At one point, Paddington 2 was even the best reviewed movie in history.

1 Best: Toy Story 2 (100%)

Following up a movie like Toy Story was never going to be easy, but that didn’t stop Pixar from trying and succeeding. In this one, we find out that Woody is a collectible when he’s discovered and stolen by a greedy museum owner. Naturally this prompts Buzz Lightyear, Mr. Potato, and the rest of the gang into action and they set out to save their friend.

General consensus on Rotten Tomatoes states that Toy Story 2 is that rare sequel that improves upon its predecessor.

The sequel raises the stakes and ups the element of adventure while retaining the humor and heart that made audiences fall in love with the franchise in the first place.

What’s your favorite sequel? Let us know in the comments!



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2018-10-10 04:10:39 – Kieran Fisher