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Doctor Strange 2 Recruits MCU Loki TV Show Writer | Screen Rant

Marvel’s Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness finds a new writer in Loki showrunner Michael Waldron. The Doctor Strange sequel found itself without a director last month, after original helmsman Scott Derrickson stepped down over creative differences. It’s been speculated the filmmaker, who was best known for his work in the horror genre before directing the original Doctor Strange, wanted to take the sequel further into the realm of horror than Marvel Studios was comfortable with.

For the past few weeks, Marvel has been actively searching for Derrickson’s replacement, in the hope of keeping Doctor Strange 2 moving on schedule to begin production this May for a theatrical release one year later. Currently up for the job is Sam Raimi, a director who’s known for his work in both the horror and superhero genres, with the Evil Dead franchise and Tobey Maguire-Kirsten Dunst Spider-Man trilogy under his belt. Derrickson has even come out and voiced his support for Raimi, calling him a “great choice” to take over Doctor Strange 2. Now, it appears Marvel has found a new writer to work on the film with (potentially) Raimi.

Related: Sam Raimi Could Direct Spider-Man Again (In Doctor Strange 2)

THR is reporting Waldron, who’s serving as showrunner on the upcoming Disney+ MCU Loki TV show, has boarded the Doctor Strange sequel, taking over from original Multiverse of Madness writer Jade Bartlett. This is the second time Marvel has turned to one of the writers of its Disney+ MCU series to work on a movie, having recently hired WandaVision writer Megan McDonnell to script Captain Marvel 2. It’s especially appropriate in this case since MCU head honcho Kevin Feige previously confirmed the Loki TV show will tie directly into Doctor Strange 2.

With Raimi in talks to take over as director, it only makes sense for Marvel to bring in a new writer to realize his vision for Doctor Strange 2. Thanks to his work on Loki (which doesn’t premiere until 2021), Waldron should already be well-versed in the MCU’s lore and have a firm grasp on how to connect the dots between Multiverse of Madness and the Disney+ shows. The plan is for the Phase 4 MCU movies and TV series to interconnect with and expand upon one another, much more than the now-defunct Marvel Television’s projects and the films did back in Phases 1-3. Of course, more casual viewers should still be able to enjoy Doctor Strange 2 and the rest of the Phase 4 movie slate without watching everything on Disney+.

Waldron’s hiring also has interesting implications for the larger connection between Doctor Strange 2 and the Loki TV show. It’s been speculated Loki, who possesses the Space Stone, will be the key to the Multiverse of Madness and have a role to play in either creating and/or saving it from Wanda Maximoff aka. Scarlet Witch. The latter is similarly said to be an important part of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, building off the events of WandaVision (which premieres on Disney+ in December). If so, the MCU may finally start to live up to its (in)famous “It’s all connected” tagline in Phase 4.

NEXT: Every Marvel Character Confirmed & Rumored for Doctor Strange 2

Source: THR


2020-02-07 02:02:05

Sandy Schaefer

Doctor Who’s Rejection Of American Writer Joe Hill Was Brutal

Doctor Who’s rejection of American writer Joe Hill was a brutal let down for the up and coming filmmaker. The legendary BBC series has been a cult favourite since 1963, attracting a wide range of talent as well as an extremely varied fan base. Unfortunately, it appears that not just anyone can join the fun.

As the son of horror fiction royalty Stephen King, Hill has been working to blaze his own trail as both a writer and a filmmaker. While some might say that having one of the most famous American authors of all time for a father couldn’t hurt your chances of finding success, Hill seems to have wanted to cut his own path straight from the start. Through numerous award-winning novels, Hill’s profile and fame grew, though eventually the public came to learn that the author’s real name was actually Joe Hillstrom King. Despite wanting to keep his family connections quiet, so far it hasn’t hurt Hill’s career in the least. And, as the 47-year-old Doctor Who fan recently found out, sometimes even having the best connections or help isn’t enough to land a highly coveted job. At least that seems to be the case with Doctor Who.

Related: 2019 Proved To Be A Mixed Year For Stephen King Movies

Bleeding Cool is now reporting that during a recent podcast interview, Hill revealed his love for the famed BBC series and how it had played a special role in his sons’ childhood. Calling himself “a huge Doctor Who geek”, Hill recounted a time in his career when he was fortunate enough to be able to pitch three different story ideas to the legendary sci-fi series. At one point, Hill also reveals that he even had world-renowned author Neil Gaiman helping him along, editing the pitches and offering suggestions on how to improve the work. It seemed a bulletproof approach to landing a job on the series, but as Hill recounts, things didn’t turn out that way:

HILL: “So…I’m a huge Doctor Who geek. Watching Doctor Who…watching the David Tennant Doctor Who with my boys was a really happy part of their childhood, and of me being a dad. And I had some ideas for Doctor Who, and I really wanted to write for that show. And my screen agent got me a chance to pitch on it. So, i spent a month and a half working on three pitches, and man, I have never imagined harder in my whole life. I mean, I just worked so hard on these things. And by chance, I actually wound up spending a weekend with Neil Gaiman. We were in the same place at the same time, and hanging out a lot, and he actually edited my pitches. He actually went through the pitches and was like, ‘Yes do this. Don’t do that. This is a good idea. Hate this idea.’ You know? And I’m like, you couldn’t ask for a better editor!”

GOLDEN: “Of course!”

HILL: “And so I, you know, with trepidation and my heart in my mouth, I sent in my pitches, and a couple weeks passed, and I got…the email I got back said, ‘We have never let an American write Doctor Who, and if we were going to, we wouldn’t start with you.”

KEENE: “Oh my god!

GOLDEN: “Oh come on! Are you f***ing kidding me?”

KEENE: “Oh my god!”

(Hill and Keene burst into laughter)

HILL: “Is that not the most smoking rejection of all time?”

KEENE: “Jesus…”

HILL: “I remain in awe. I remain in awe. It’s still my favorite rejection.”

It is certainly a rough way to be turned down for something that clearly meant so much to Hill. At the same time, however, it’s good to see that he took the rejection in stride and can even laugh about it today. Hill’s career is presently in a very comfortable place – after teaming with his father on the novella In the Tall Grass, the story was adapted into a feature film on Netflix late last year. Though the film divided critics and audiences, it gave viewers a taste of what Hill could offer Netflix. His upcoming Locke & Key series is set to debut on the streaming service and so far, it’s enjoying a high degree of anticipation from fans.

Hill’s rejection from Doctor Who doesn’t appear to have been delivered in the most sensitive manner possible. In fact, the way in which he was told that he would never write for the series might even lead some fans to view the production negatively. But Hill didn’t allow the rejection to slow him down. Instead he kept his head up and continued to work hard – a valuable life lesson if ever there was one.

Next: The Dark Tower Connects Everything In Stephen King’s Universe

Source: Bleeding Cool


2020-02-06 02:02:52

Mike Jones

GTA Writer & Rockstar Games Co-Founder Dan Houser Is Leaving

Dan Houser, one of the co-founders of Rockstar Games and an instrumental figure in the development of the long-running Grand Theft Auto franchise, is now departing the company, according to a new report. Houser was an integral part of many of Rockstar Games’ most popular franchises, including Grand Theft Auto, Red Dead Redemption, and Bully. He and his brother Sam Houser, Rockstar’s other co-founder, were both once featured as two of TIME Magazine’s most influential people in 2009, due largely to the mainstream success and popularity of the Grand Theft Auto series.

Although many of their games have both thrived on and been influenced by controversy surrounding things like the portrayal of violence in media, Sam & Dan Houser have seen nothing but success in their created properties. Grand Theft Auto V, on which Dan Houser worked as a writer, has become the most popular piece of entertainment media of all time since its release back in 2013, and ended up being the best-selling video game of the entire decade. Now, however, it seems like Dan Houser is ready to step away.

Related: Rockstar Stuntman Is Again Hinting At GTA 6 On Social Media

According to a report by Polygon, Take-Two Interactive released a statement earlier this afternoon which announced Dan Houser, the company’s current Vice President, would be leaving Rockstar Games entirely, and his last day will be on March 11th of this year. The statement goes on to say the company is “extremely grateful for his contributions,” and says that they have built “some of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful game world, a global community of passionate fans and an incredibly talent team, which remain focused on current and future projects.”

This final statement about “current and future projects” is likely in the hopes of not worrying fans or stockholders, as the departure of Dan Houser is surely to cause a change-up in the day-to-day machinations of Rockstar Games. Losing someone whose creative voice was so integral to so many of the franchise’s best titles would certainly be troubling for them, especially since, according to the report, this announcement arrived just two days before a company quarterly earnings analysis, which will likely come later this week.

The real question on many players’ minds likely relates to how this new departure inside Rockstar Games will affect the production of Grand Theft Auto 6, which has been heavily rumored to currently be in development. While companies as large as Rockstar likely lose and gain new employees all the time, the loss of such a prominent figure in both the company and the games industry as a whole is certainly surprising to many, and it will be intriguing to see how the Grand Theft Auto series, and Rockstar Games as a company, moves forward in the future.

Next: Red Dead Redemption PC Port Officially Shut Down By Take-Two Lawsuit

Source: Polygon


2020-02-04 03:02:03

Christopher Teuton

Mega Man Movie To Be Written By The Batman Co-Writer Matt Tomlin

The long-awaited live-action Mega Man movie has found a new writer in The Batman co-writer Matt Tomlin. There have been rumors of a Mega Man movie kicking around Hollywood since at least 2015 and as recently as 2017, but with a new writer attached it looks like development on the project has moved another inch forward. Now that the dust has settled in the wake of Disney’s acquisition of 20th Century Fox (and all its properties) it seems the project might finally see the light of day.

Mega Man was first introduced to the world in a 1980s Nintendo video game, which spawned numerous sequels, TV shows, and anime (the character is known in Japan as Rockman). 20th Century Fox had announced it was working with the game’s publisher, Capcom, to develop a feature film back in 2015. That version never materialized and the project seemed to be dead until two years ago, when it was announced that the team behind Paranormal Activity 3 & 4, Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, were attached to write and direct. This iteration of the film could have been derailed by Disney’s acquisition of Fox’s properties, but in an October shareholder update Capcom casually mentioned the film was still in development.

Related: Dredd Producer Wants To Make R-Rated Mega Man Movie

However, at the bottom of a recent report from The Hollywood Reporter it’s mentioned that Tomlin is writing Mega Man for Chernin Entertainment. With only a few short films under his belt, Tomlin was a surprise pick to write Warner Bros.’ upcoming The Batman from director Matt Reeves. Since the project has been stuck in the writing stage for some time now, no word on casting or a release date has been given. While nothing else regarding Mega Man is known at this time, Tomlin did seemingly confirm the news on Twitter via the use of an appropriate gif.

Prior to hiring Joost and Schulman, 20th Century Fox has spent years trying to secure the rights to Mega Man, but have seemingly handed control (thanks to the merger) over to Disney. Outside of a recent Cartoon Network series, Mega Man: Fully Charged, which aired from 2018-2019 (no second season has been announced) there hasn’t been much movement on the franchise, although it’s possible this is due to the Disney/Fox merger. In the meantime, Capcom kept busy producing the upcoming Sonic The Hedgehog movie, due in theaters next month, but that film’s box office performance (good or bad) could influence the speed of Mega Man‘s development.

More: 12 Things You Need to Know About Mega Man

Source: THR


2020-01-23 01:01:37

Shawn DePasquale

Exclusive: WONDER WOMAN #750 Preview with Writer Steve Orlando

With the approach of the landmark Wonder Woman #750, fans of the Amazonian princess are preparing to celebrate her storied past. But the issue will also be setting the stage for Wonder Woman in 2020 and beyond… starting with a powerful conclusion to Diana’s longest-running rivalry, that her fans won’t soon forget.

For many of DC’s heroes, the Rebirth relaunch was a glorious return to form, and the creation of a new place in the modern DC Universe. For Wonder Woman, Rebirth was a return to Diana’s origins — revealing dark truths about her current world in the process. Since then she has turned to face the darkness, as always, losing friends, allies, her weapons, and her armor as her strongest and most tragic adversary, Cheetah, repays her debt to Diana. Their battle has been building to its conclusion, and will finally arrive in Wonder Woman‘s 750th issue. And we’ve got an exclusive look at the historic issue, and battle, direct from the writer himself.

RELATED: Wonder Woman #750 Cover Collects Diana’s Best Costumes

The special issue is calling on an all-star team of writers and artists to give Wonder Woman the sense of occasion she truly deserves. But fans can rest assured: it will be Steve Orlando and Jesús Merino’s “Wild Hunt” leading the charge, concluding Diana’s three-issue showdown with Cheetah. Having lost an old friend, and her iconic bracelets and golden lasso, even victory will leave Diana with some hard questions. And after speaking with Orlando, it sounds like those questions (and the answers Diana comes up with) are a chance to remind readers of the soul of her character. And use that conclusion to start a new beginning, too. Find our full interview, along with preview pages from the conclusion of “The Wild Hunt” below:

Well, you have returned to Diana and Themyscira, and you’re doing it on the cusp of the massive Wonder Woman #750. Some readers might think a ‘milestone’ issue is more about the past than the future, but it doesn’t sound like that’s going to be the case for your story – the conclusion of one, and start of another?

That’s exactly right! With our story in WONDER WOMAN 750, we wanted to offer a THANK YOU and a conclusion to the longrunning storyline between Wonder Woman and Cheetah, as well as take the opportunity to refocus, redefine, and rededicate Diana to her mission: truth, love, peace. Our CREDITS will say both “FINALE” as well as “A NEW BEGINNING.” And we mean that. If you’ve been following Wonder Woman for a long time, you’ll get the big blowoff you deserve between her and Cheetah, as well as her and the Gods. And if you’re new? You’ll watch Diana reset her life and rebuild herself and her mission, even her tools, armor and weapons, from the ground up after losing almost everything during G Willow Wilson’s breakneck and awesome run.

So in our case, this milestone issue is meant to both celebrate folks who’ve been on the journey with us for a while, and welcome in people who haven’t checked in on Diana in a minute and want to know, succinctly, exactly who she is, what she does, and what she stands for going forward.

This first arc with Cheetah really feels like a bookend, and a really satisfying payoff or callback to how Barbara Ann was re-introduced and written in Wonder Woman: Rebirth (even though she’s out for blood, it’s hard not to bring back all that sympathy for her). Was that the goal you were aiming for in your approach to her character in these first three issues?

Absolutely! When picking up this Wonder Woman and Cheetah story effectively mid-arc, we needed to look back at not just what groundwork had been laid by Willow, but also where the characters had gone since their reintroduction. Diana and Barbara Ann’s relationship is one of the most fascinating in the DCU, especially with how Rucka, Wilson, Sharp and Evely rebuilt it.  We wanted to offer a satisfying closing, emotionally at least, to that arc, spurned on by the DARK FATES who began appearing in Willow’s run, to drive Cheetah and Diana to an explosive confrontation where they could no longer avoid each other – and I’m glad to hear it sounds like we’ve succeeded!

People often say the best villains are the simplest, or ‘purest’ ones. Villains who are polar opposites of the hero. But Cheetah comes across as a raging storm of pain, hurt, resentment, anger, and vulnerability. In a certain story, that ‘messiness’ might be seen as a hindrance as an effective antagonist foil. As a writer, do you see that challenge or those characters differently?

I don’t think it’s a hindrance. You’re right, villains are often best when they’re simple, pure visions. But villains also work when they are dark reflections of a hero. And Wonder Woman is in of herself both very simple – she fights for love, truth, and peace, as well as very complex – those ideas in of themselves have ever-shifting, dynamic meanings on a personal and worldwide level.

So with Cheetah, I think the so called “messiness” is what makes her an effective foil for Wonder Woman who, herself, often embodies contradictions: a warrior for peace, as she’s often called. But again, Cheetah does still mirror Diana, because where Cheetah reacts to her life and the world with the emotions you note above, Diana reacts to the same situations with the opposite emotions. They contract each other, which is why Diana will always try to save Cheetah, and Cheetah will never allow that she could be saved. They work as foils because they’re doomed to repeat this tragic cycle forever, it’s in their core.

Keeping up the pattern of complicated, almost self-contradicting characters, your Wonder Woman quickly embraced the idea of power through submission. Love, trust, and compassion are always defining traits for Diana, but the way you depict submission isn’t shying away from the actual risk and danger. With Mayfly, and the Annual, it didn’t feel too dangerous, but with Cheetah it feels almost radical. Why is that important to your approach to Diana?

Because Wonder Woman is different. She comes from a culture fundamentally different from ours, one that we’d view as fundamentally radical. We also often think of Diana as strong, but with loving submission, a concept fundamental to the Amazons, she knows the key to understanding and real strength often includes risk, it includes vulnerability. In this battle with Cheetah, Diana knows that at her core, Cheetah wishes to be heard, even if Diana thinks she’s wrong. The only way to break that cycle isn’t by silencing her, or physically defeating her yet again while saying she cares about her. It is to step into the realm of vulnerability, to give Cheetah what she wants, to listen, and to prove Diana truly respects Cheetah, loves Cheetah, by opening herself up to her and trusting that, given the chance, given what she truly desires…Cheetah will be disarmed by Diana’s vulnerability. It’s the knowledge that Cheetah could harm her, but the trust that she will not.

Cheetah telling Diana “I know what’s best for you” is a really interesting idea to drop, especially since recent issues have shown Diana may not know that answer herself, or what her place in the world is going to look like going forward. Should readers take that as a sign you’re going to be addressing that question in Wonder Woman #750 (and beyond)?

I think so, I think you’ll get a solution to this problem in 750, if not the path to the solution. Cheetah’s latest quest to pay a debt to Diana she doesn’t see as a debt, to solve a problem Diana doesn’t see she has, makes Diana realize that Cheetah’s not the only one in her life acting like this. I’ve said 750 shows Wonder Woman rededicating herself and redefining herself, and these pressures, people thinking they know what’s best for Wonder Woman, and know better than Diana who she herself is…force her to make some changed, and take the first steps towards a renewed focus and self-empowerment.

Without spoiling anything too early, what else can you tease about the next slate of Wonder Woman stories fans have coming to them (whether it’s characters, story, artwork)?

The future is coming fast and furious for Diana once we get through 750. We know the Dark Fates set Cheetah on a collision course with Diana, we know that Paula Von Gunther is lurking in the shadows, looking to avenge her valkyrie ancestors on the Amazons, and avenge herself on Diana. Her arc, THE FOUR HORSEWOMEN, really challenges what Diana knows about the truth, and what she believes about compassion. Before that, we’ve got visits from the past in the form of VALDA, a Brienne of Tarth type stranded in the future thanks to a battle with a quantum beast, and a visit from space in the form of MAXIMA, a fellow princess with a secret that could shake her people to the core…and reunite her with the one she loves. Power and grace are coming to Wonder Woman, and if Diana can survive this clash of Amazons versus Valkyries… her next mission is for the soul of the future itself.

  • WONDER WOMAN #750 (2020)
  • Release Date: January 22nd, 2020
  • Written by: Vita Ayala, Marguerite Bennett, Kami Garcia, Dean Hale, Shannon Hale, Jeff Loveness, Steve Orlando, Greg Rucka, Gail Simone, Mariko Tamaki, and others.
  • Art by: Elena Casagrande, Colleen Doran, Jesús Merino, Gabriel Picolo, and others
  • Cover by: Joëlle Jones
  • An all-star 96-page celebration of the Amazon Princess by longtime favorites and acclaimed new voices! In the lead story, Wonder Woman’s epic “Year of the Villain” battle comes to a close, leading the way to new challenges ahead. Additionally, this oversized gem tells tales from Diana’s past, present and future by some of the greatest storytellers in the business— including Colleen Doran, Mariko Tamaki, the Teen Titans: Raven team of writer Kami Garcia and artist Gabriel Picolo, and legendary Wonder Woman creators returning to the character, including Gail Simone and Greg Rucka!

Wonder Woman #750 is a 96-page prestige format one-shot comic book, debuting in comic book stores and participating online retailers January 22, 2020, for $9.99.

MORE: Wonder Woman Delivers Her Most Brutal Attack (EVER?)


2020-01-20 01:01:01

Andrew Dyce

New BATMAN Writer is Bringing The Horror Back To Gotham

Writer James Tynion IV is no stranger to Gotham, having worked on such Batman titles as Detective Comics and Batman: Eternal. But in his new nine-issue story arc “Their Dark Designs,” Tynion is bringing an “action-horror” element to DC’s flagship book with gruesome new characters, and graphic death scenes.

Despite a long career writing stories within the Batman franchise, Batman #86 (on sale now) marks Tynion’s first time in the driver’s seat of DC’s flagship Batman comic. According to multiple interviews with Tynion as well the writer’s own newsletter, The Empire of the Tiny Onion, his “bat-book” will heavily feature the title character as an agent of fear, going as far as comparing Batman’s ferocious tenacity to that of horror icon Michael Myers.

Related: New Batman Game Teased By WB Montreal Again, Fans Put Together Full Logo

Tynion explained his overall plans for the book in a recent interview with DC Nation:

We’ve talked a lot about the tone we’re hoping to bring to Batman. I keep using the words ‘action-horror’ and I think that’s going to drive a lot of what we’re doing… Batman has always been a frightening character, and he uses his villains’ fear as a weapon to help him do his job. There are ways we’re going to push that and bring it into the world he’s helping rebuild around him after the last year.

Following Tom King’s gargantuan 85-issue run of Batman would be intimidating for many writers, but with nearly a decade of comic books under his belt (and legendary Batman scribe Scott Snyder as a former professor) Tynion seamlessly transitions from the aftermath of “City of Bane” into his own story. The Dark Knight’s life is that much darker with Gotham only beginning to recover from its occupation under Bane and his enforcers.

This wouldn’t be the first time Bruce Wayne has had to rebuild his city after a major cataclysm, but with his longtime butler/father figure Alfred Pennyworth now tragically deceased, Batman has to fight against unstoppable odds while missing a core piece of his support system. In one tear-inducing moment in issue #86, Bruce momentarily forgets Alfred’s passing and instinctively tries hailing him over his cowl communicator. In short, Bruce… isn’t doing too well. Right from the start of the series, and his emotional baggage is turning his crusade to fix Gotham into a manic obsession.

But Batman won’t be the only boogeyman in Tynion’s series. In his first issue alone, Tynion introduces two new assassin characters, one of whom looks like he walked right off the set of House of 1000 Corpses. The issue also features two slow and gruesome deaths that will give anyone with septophobia goosebumps. Tynion would hardly be the first writer to inject horror elements into a Batman story, but for the seasoned comic book writer it’s more than just a gimmick. With Bruce in such a poor state of mental health following the tragic events of Tom King’s 85-issue run, Tynion is using the horror genre to spotlight the character’s emotional turmoil. While Gotham’s villains might be scary by themselves, an emotionally shaken Batman driven to his breaking point is by far even scarier.

Batman #86 is available now at your local comic book shop.

More: Morbius and New Mutants Crossing Over Into Horror Is Smart For Superhero Movies

Source: DC Comics


2020-01-12 02:01:02

Dorian Black

Rise of Skywalker Writer Says Last Jedi’s Answers Were “Too Easy”

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker co-writer Chris Terrio believes The Last Jedi’s answers about Rey’s parentage were “too easy.” The young scavenger’s heritage was a topic that ran through the entirety of the sequel trilogy, with The Rise of Skywalker ultimately revealing Rey is the granddaughter of none other than Emperor Palpatine. As many have noted by now, that twist appears to be at odds with The Last Jedi, which posited Rey’s parents were two nobodies who sold her away for drinking money. The Rise of Skywalker attempts to “from a certain point of view” its way around things by saying Rey’s parents chose to live as nobodies in an effort to protect her from Palpatine’s watch.

Since The Rise of Skywalker premiered a few weeks ago, Terrio and director J.J. Abrams have defended their creative choice multiple times, arguing that Rey learning she’s a descendant of ultimate evil is more devastating than hearing she comes from nothing. While there is something interesting in the heir to the Sith throne rejecting her blood family and choosing to live as a Skywalker, a lot of fans (especially those that liked The Last Jedi) can’t help but feel The Rise of Skywalker blatantly retcons the tough “truths” Rey unpacked in the trilogy’s second installment. But as far as Terrio is concerned, The Last Jedi actually took the easy way out.

Related: The Rise of Skywalker’s Rey Parents Twist Was The Worst Option

Speaking with GQ, Terrio was inevitably asked about Rise of Skywalker’s Rey Palpatine reveal and once again provided an explanation. In his mind, The Last Jedi didn’t resolve the issue of Rey’s parentage and there was still more to explore in the third film:

Well, we weren’t convinced that it had been cleared up, because there’s still this highly troubling vision that Rey had in Episode VII, which is the shot with her parents leaving the planet. Also, the events of The Last Jedi are literally just after the events of Episode VII—within 48 hours, Rey has had a Force-back to her parents and then the very next day is told “your parents were no one and they were junk traders. None of that matters.” And we thought in a way that would be too easy because of the idea that Rey had been longing for her parents for so many years. We just felt like there was something more going on.

One of the reasons why The Last Jedi writer/director Rian Johnson chose to make Rey’s parents nameless junk traders was because he felt that would be the most difficult thing for her to hear in that moment. She had basically spent her entire life waiting for them to return and find her on Jakku, so to find out they’re dead and didn’t really care about her was a brutal revelation. When looked at it from that perspective, there’s nothing easy about The Last Jedi’s answers at all. As for Rey seeing her parents in the Force vision, that could simply be chalked up to a traumatic memory (being abandoned by family) boiling up to the surface. It wasn’t necessarily an indication Rey’s parents were people of great importance – especially since The Force Awakens doesn’t do much of anything to even vaguely establish Rey is related to Emperor Palpatine.

It’s a little amusing Terrio feels this way about The Last Jedi since an argument can be made he and Abrams used Palpatine as an easy explanation for everything from Supreme Leader Snoke’s origins to Rey’s controversial preternatural Force abilities. In some respects, having Palpatine pulling the strings from the shadows in the sequel trilogy made sense (the Emperor became the singular thread that tied the three trilogies together), but his role in The Rise of Skywalker suffered greatly from lack of development. Many of the Palpatine-centric twists in the film seemed to come out of left field and (sadly) made the universe feel smaller after Johnson attempted to help it grow. If the Emperor had been a part of the new films from the beginning, viewers probably would be more accepting of the reveals, but as it stands, The Last Jedi and The Rise of Skywalker don’t fully see eye-to-eye.

More: Rise of Skywalker’s Rey Parents Twist Isn’t A Last Jedi Plot Hole

Source: GQ


2020-01-10 02:01:20

Chris Agar

CAPTAIN MARVEL: THE END Preview with Writer Kelly Thompson

The cosmic Captain Marvel may be one of the company’s most recognizable heroes at the moment, but make no mistake: the final chapter of Carol Danvers’ story is coming. And to tell the tale in Captain Marvel: The End, the publisher is turning to two proven talents in writer Kelly Thompson and artist Carmen Carnero. But this voyage into the future may not be all sparkle and starlight.

When The End line of one-shots was announced, it was a bittersweet proposition. Fans would love to see the kind of poetic prose and poignant portrayals inevitable in the ‘final stories’ of Captain America, Miles Morales, Doctor Strange, Captain Marvel, and more. But goodbyes are never easy. Once the official details about the books were released, Carol’s story stood apart. While other Avengers remained on Earth to age as they fought the good fight, Carol’s mission took her towards a more… cosmic destiny. Screen Rant got the chance to speak with Thompson about Captain Marvel: The End, and offer readers a preview of Carol’s ‘homecoming’ this January. Find the full interview and pages below.

RELATED: How Marvel Turned an Infinity Stone Into a New Superhero

Captain Marvel: The End is coming along at a really exciting time for you as a writer on the main Captain Marvel book, with the introduction of Star (and her coming story), and a darker chapter in Carol’s life that you knew ahead of time was going to be a bit of a shock to readers. Was it a no-brainer to also tackle ‘the final Captain Marvel story’?

Kelly Thompson: I low-key would have been fuming if Marvel hadn’t given me a chance to write this Carol story!  That said, I was hesitant as we began, it was almost like there was too much flexibility. But as soon as I started getting into what it could be and the emotional impact, I knew we had something special, particularly since we had Carmen Carnero drawing it. It’s so emotional and so much of that is down to Carmen. I ended up just loving the world we built here, I honestly wish I could do a whole series set in 2051 with those characters. Y’know what? Everyone buy ten copies so Marvel lets me do that!

Your current run of Captain Marvel isn’t lacking in twists, trials, and standout moments. But how do you even begin to tell a story that is literally ‘The End’ of a character you love?

KT: I just tried to go back to the things I believe are the core of Carol Danvers – the cosmic exploration, the never give up spirit of her, the deep and abiding love she has for her friends, the self-sacrifice that comes so naturally to her. When you add all of that to the way I knew she could and should level up over time in a story like this — it all just fell together really naturally

Can you speak about that process, of taking all of the character work and exploration of Carol that I’m sure you had already been doing, but then projecting that out almost half a century? Was it a case of tracking the Carol you’re writing now, or trying to tell a story that can stand entirely on its own?

KT: Well, it’s not half a century, that was a mistake in the solicit, it’s set in 2051. So for readers it’s not 50 years in the future but 31 years in the future. I think Carol in “The End” is certainly consistent with the character I’m writing in Captain Marvel now…but a lot has happened to her in those intervening years – both good and bad. When we first see her she’s in another galaxy, still fighting for justice, and she’s basically left earth, and almost her humanity itself behind. She’s magnificent but more closed off and lonely than the Carol we knew. More thoughtful and melancholy…more distant. And then something changes that.

RELATED: Captain Marvel Has Killed Thor, and IRON MAN is Next

The first details offered are obviously tantalizing for Carol’s fans, with talk of her in “the deepest reaches of the cosmos to spread peace and justice,” now returning for a final chapter. What can fans expect, without spoiling any specific plot points?

KT: Well, as mentioned, the solicit is a bit misleading. I would say that she has already BEEN into the deepest reaches of the cosmos to spread peace and justice, and now, something mysterious is bringing her home.

This series is also a reunion for yourself and Carmen Carnero, so was that partnership just as you had left it? I know fans of your work are going to have their excitement for ‘The End’ boosted a bit higher, so what can you tell us about working with Carmen, and what’s in store for the visuals?

KT: The great thing was that Carmen started this very soon after she wrapped her Captain Marvel arc, so I didn’t have time to miss her…but as we wrap this story up I am very aware of how much I’m going to miss her. Especially because, no exaggeration, I am certain this is the best work of her career. It’s a very demanding script with a ton of emotion and some big action, and a bunch of world building and character cameos — and the design work that comes with that. She always blows me away with her work, but this was next level. I was tearing up when looking at her inked pages as I did a lettering pass on the script.

I think the idea of Carol ‘evolving’ into a new kind of character comes across in the cover art immediately, with a new, more cosmic Captain Marvel uniform and design. Can you speak about the process of creating this really breathtaking look for Carol? What is the message readers should take from the new design?

KT: This version of Carol has very much leveled up. She has evolved into a form that is sort of beyond just being Carol. For design we wanted something that still felt like Carol and had her Hala Star because it’s so core to the character, but we wanted her to present more as a cosmic being…a goddess even. Mostly I sent text to describe what we were aiming for, but I did include a lot of the more wild older Binary designs. These days when we show Carol super powered up and “going Binary” it’s just presented as flames, but I love the old Binary stuff – the sort of white hot glowing form – that feeling that she’s beyond just human now, y’know?

I think the only message I can say that isn’t too much of a spoiler – is that the design and Carol’s overall look definitely has meaning to the story.

Captain Marvel: The End #1 will arrive in your local comic book shop on January 29th, 2020.

MORE: Captain Marvel Has Betrayed Iron Man… By Spoiling Game of Thrones


2019-12-22 11:12:10

Andrew Dyce

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Writer Defends Rey’s Lineage Reveal

Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker ahead.

One of the co-writers of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has defended the decision to change Rey’s lineage from what had been established in The Last Jedi. The biggest question that fans were asking going into The Force Awakens involved Rey’s true identity, as many people speculated that she was the daughter of Luke Skywalker, a descendant of Obi-Wan Kenobi, or related to any number of Jedi or Sith who appeared in the extended Star Wars universe.

The question of Rey’s parentage was answered in The Last Jedi when Kylo Ren told her that her parents were nobodies who sold her for drinking money. This turned out to be one of the more interesting aspects of The Last Jedi, as it meant that the power of the Force wasn’t restricted to a few different families and the potential to be a powerful Jedi or Sith wasn’t restricted to the Skywalker bloodline. It soon became clear that J.J. Abrams was throwing this plot twist out of the window in The Rise of Skywalker, as Kylo Ren was claiming that he knew Rey’s true story in promos for the film.

Related: Rey’s Parents & REAL Last Name Revealed In Star Wars: Rise Of Skywalker

It has now been revealed in The Rise of Skywalker that Rey is descended from Emperor Palpatine, completely throwing out the many fan theories about Rey’s parentage. On Twitter, user Kaila Spencer has uploaded videos from an Academy screening of The Rise of Skywalker that included a sitdown Q&A with J.J. Abrams and co-writer Chris Terrio. The question of why Rey’s backstory was changed to make her a Palpatine was answered by Terrio, who claimed that Rey needed a present problem to deal with, which took the form of the Emperor and his role in the story. Terrio also described the previous decision to make Rey a nobody as part of Rey discovering herself, with The Rise of Skywalker giving Rey the chance to recreate herself.

The Rise of Skywalker has been accused of purposely retconning or removing elements from The Last Jedi that the creative team didn’t like, including the way in which Holdo sacrificed herself, pushing Rose into the background, and Kylo Ren fixing his helmet after discarding it. The whole movie feels like a course correction on the part of the creative team, following the polarizing response to The Last Jedi and the way it changed the series.

The decision to make Rey a descendant of Emperor Palpatine is something that could have worked if it had been built up over the course of the sequel trilogy, but adding it to the last movie after telling the audience that Rey’s parents were meaningless in the previous film feels forced. Terrio claimed that Rey needed a present-tense threat to deal with, but surely Kylo Ren and the First Order could easily have filled that role on their own?

Next: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Confirmed Palpatine Was [SPOILER]

Source: kaila ren/Twitter



2019-12-21 02:12:20

Scott Baird

Writer/Director Wes Miller Interview: Hell on the Border

The life of Bass Reeves is truly the stuff of legend. One of the most important lawmen who ever lived, Reeves was born into slavery before eventually becoming the first black marshal in the untamed Wild West. His story is said to be the inspiration for The Lone Ranger, and he’s influenced the Western genre for over 100 years following his death in 1910.

This year has been an exciting one for Reeves scholars, with his life and deeds playing a tremendous role in HBO’s Watchmen series. Following up on this boost of awareness, a chapter of the man’s life has been adapted in the form of a feature film, Hell on the Border. David Gyasi stars as Bass Reeves, and Ron Perlman plays the sole member of his posse. Together, the two men are hunting notorious outlaw Bob Dozier, the real-life killer played by Frank Grillo.

Related: 10 Western Masterpieces You’ve Probably Never Seen

While promoting the release of Hell on the Border, writer/director Wes Miller spoke with Screen Rant about working on the movie. He discusses his fondness for the storied history of Bass Reeves and getting the opportunity to tell his story in a highly cinematic fashion. He discusses the racial tensions that permeate the film, Reeves’ life, and today’s America, and muses about the idea of making sequels that dramatize more of Bass Reeves’ real-life adventures.

Hell on the Border is out now in theaters, On Digital, and On Demand.

First of all, thanks for making a cool movie about Bass Reeves!

I appreciate it, man! Thanks so much!

Bass Reeves is a true legend, and really someone that has inspired everyone who came after him, whether they know it or not.

So many people don’t know about him, outside of us who truly enjoy the Western genre, but he was such an amazing character.

I’m particularly excited to share his story with the Screen Rant reader, who may only know him from his recent appearance in Watchmen. He’s definitely having a moment right now!

Yes, absolutely!

So, I think you will probably say it better than I ever could, so could you explain why this man was so important, and why his story still matters, well over 100 years later?

I think he was important for a few reasons. But primarily, he came along at a time where African Americans were just coming out of slavery and looking for their place in the world. He was born a slave, but made the decision to join law enforcement and enforce the rule of the law and dedicated himself to that. I think it’s so important, primarily because, even today, you have a divide between the outlaws and the law, and he understood, at a time when a lot of people didn’t, that the way for us to advance as a society is to have a fair justice system and to be dedicated to that. Doing it at a time where blacks didn’t even have the opportunity to vote and weren’t considered full citizens. Despite those obstacles, he said, this is what I believe in, this is what I’m gonna fight for, and this is what I’m gonna do. He accomplished that.

One of my favorite things about this movie is that it lures you in with the idea of a Western action movie, but some of my favorite scenes are just David and Ron on horseback, and he’s telling him his story.

I’m glad you appreciate that! I think there’s always a tension between having to market a movie and us telling the story. It does have its action moments, but it’s a character piece. I, as a filmmaker, wanted to respect the Western genre. It’s for the Western fans. That’s who I made it for. So having those moments… Westerns are about exploration. It’s about brotherhood, it’s about manhood, friendship, learning your place in the world. Ron and David, the chemistry they shared, those moments… There were a couple of touching moments that for me, as a filmmaker, watching them work, I was like, “Yeah, this is why we’re here.”

Filmmakers really have to work to find ways to distill their stories when dealing with modern settings. But in a Western, there are no phones, no TV, no distractions. When you’re riding a horse with a guy next to you, the only thing you can do is talk to that guy while looking at beautiful American scenery. And you shot in Alabama, right?

Yes, correct. And you’re 100% on that reflection.

Tell me a bit about shooting in Alabama, in the American South, which definitely has a massive history in the Civil Rights Movement.

You know, it was interesting. The choice to shoot in Alabama was a producer decision. When we got on the ground and started meeting people and everything, I felt like… The south… Let me say it this way: There were still a lot of Confederate re-enactors there, and you come in with a perception of who they are, what they are, what they believe. Although we had different beliefs on certain aspects of history, they were cool and nice guys. I think, like, it really exemplifies the divide that exists, but also the common ground that’s available. The south, even in modern times, still exemplifies that dichotomy, of the divide, but with possibilities that aren’t yet fully realized. That’s part of what Bass Reeves was fighting for, to heal those divides, to find those common grounds. He pursued justice equally, no matter who you were.

That was an incredible way of putting it. You nailed it. Okay, so David and Ron are fantastic, but Frank is the third pillar of acting in this movie, and he’s so vicious. He’s terrifying. Do you have any moments on set where you’re like, “Hey, pull it back,” or “Hey, give us more.” What’s it like when you’re working with a character who is so intense?

Frank is an amazing actor. For us, for Bob Dozier, we didn’t want to bring in just a cookie-cutter bad guy. We wanted somebody with some emotional complexity. And Frank has an intensity, but also a softness that I believe he brought to Bob Dozier. Frank is so experienced, and was so in tune with the character, directing him was more of an adjustment, as opposed to having to completely redirect him. We met and talked about the character, who he was, what we wanted. 98% of Frank’s choices were spot-on. It was really, like I said, small adjustments. But yeah, he’s amazing! I think he brought a gravitas to the screen. When the camera turns on and we hit record, he just brings a level of presence in a scene and on a set that is very difficult to articulate, but was definitely felt by myself, the crew, and the cast.

I don’t want to put the cart before the horse, but would you be on board for more Bass Reeves movies?

You know, absolutely! I think that’s a really good question. The thing about Bass’s life is, it can’t be contained to a two-hour movie. There’s so many different facets to him. This one, for us, was more of an introduction to the man, and looking at a point in his life where he made the choice and became the Marshall, which began his journey in law enforcement. There’s so many aspects, during that journey, that are very cinematic, very informative, and really explore his character. I hope we have an opportunity, and that brings us back to what we were talking about: there are a lot of people who didn’t know who Bass was, and we’re hoping that seeing this, there will be an appetite for his story and for similar stories. We want Lionsgate to come back and say, “Alright, we know the audience wants this, so let’s give them what they want, so let’s make another one, and another.” Until we can really get his story fleshed out. There’s decades of material there to work with.

There really is. His life was so incredible. Was there anything you wanted to put in this movie but decided to hold back on? I know filmmakers don’t like to bank on a sequel that they might never get, but was there anything where you were like, “This just doesn’t fit here, but maybe next time…?”

Not really. Not past the development stage. I think, when I first began, it was looking at his life and I started collating all my research, my big points were really long! So I realized, if you try to tell a full biopic in two hours, you’ll wind up short-changing. So I kind of took a little from the playbook of The Equalizer. You know, the first one, they introduce a character without going into a lot of his backstory. You kind of saw him where he was, brought back into the world. And I kind of looked at that as a successful introduction. We’re not answering every question. We’re not explaining everything. But we’re dropping you into this man’s life at a critical point. And we’re hoping that, in the end, you’ll say, “What’s next?”

I’m glad you mentioned The Equalizer; my first-ever Screen Rant interviews were with Antoine Fuqua and Ashton Sanders for part two! Two of my favorite movies, absolutely, and I can definitely see the connection here! Okay, so you’re doing all this research on Bass. I assume you had a general idea of who he was before then, but was there anything you learned that surprised you?

There were two pieces of his life that I found very fascinating, that I think are definitely worthy to explore later. One, his son was charged with murder and he was tasked with executing a warrant to bring him in. I think a father having to bring his own son to justice is very difficult for a father. There’s a lot of material there to explore. And another one was, we found out that Bass was charged with murder, himself. Later in his life. The witnesses who were against him were basically the outlaws he was capturing, so I was able to read the transcript and see his own words and testifying on his own behalf. Those were two of the bigger pieces that I think are very compelling character studies.

Boy oh boy, I know we’re not supposed to get political or whatever, but if that were to happen today, Fox News would be all over it, you know what I mean?

(Laughs) You’re absolutely correct. 100%.

It’s so fascinating. That story, in particular, of Bass getting accused of murder. It’s one of those things where, he is born into the greatest injustice in American history and then dedicates his life to the pursuit of justice, and then they still try to turn it all around on him. It was not, is not, and I wonder if it will ever be, easier to be a black American.

That was very well said. The answer to that is, you know, hopefully. Hopefully. But it still exists. As a black American, I have been witness to, and also maybe subjected to some of those types of disparities. One thing about cinema that I really love, is I believe film does fill the gap in giving that hope. We just have to continue to make these kinds of movies that spawn these types of conversations so you can ask those kinds of questions and hopefully open other hearts and ears to ask those questions and continuing, every day, just to make this place a little bit better.

There’s always hope that you can make a piece of art that can make things better, change people’s minds. Do you also consider it personally therapeutic? To your own experiences? Does channeling your own life and turning it into art have a purifying effect?

I think, I would say yes, generally. For me, writing is that. That spiritual place where that occurs. Something happens when transferring words from your heart and mind onto the screenplay, and watching it come to life as characters. Oftentimes, when I finish a writing session on the screenplay, I do feel a little bit more fulfilled, or a little bit rejuvenated or refreshed. Hopefully, we’re able to continue bringing those screenplays to the screen and give that same hope and refreshment to the audience.

More: Sean Patrick Flanery Interview: The Outsider


2019-12-20 02:12:54

Zak Wojnar