Oh my god you guys! Disney totally asked me to go to prom!!!
Most comic-book movies set their virtuous heroes and dastardly villains loose in the present day. But there are also quite a few that rewind the clock and transport audiences back to another time and place. Case in point: the latest Marvel movie Captain America: The First Avenger, which takes place almost entirely during the early years of World War II and pits Cap against a squad of Nazi-affiliated soldiers led by a Hitler-esque bad guy, Johann Schmidt a.k.a. The Red Skull. Here are some of the other comics-inspired features that double as period pieces. (One note: We're looking at outings involving colorfully clad heroes only, so more serious comic-to-film translations like From Hell and Road to Perdition have been left on the cutting room floor.)
The Super Bowl is known for its commercials, but while a new Doritos ad can be hilarious, it isn't exactly news. What is news are the latest movie trailers for some of this year's biggest movies -- sometimes the first trailers ever released! We watched the whole game to make sure we didn't miss a movie (Mindy covers all the regular commercials here), and rated the best and worst -- read on for video and commentary!
This week Marvel Studios is releasing Captain America: The First Avenger, a period superhero adventure starring one of their most recognizable characters. But it's also a prelude to the company's next feature, which will be a kind of comic-book movie that hasn't been attempted on the big-screen before: a team-up adventure that unites some of Marvel's biggest heroes -- including Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Captain America (Chris Evans) and The Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo, taking over from Ed Norton and Eric Bana) -- to combat a global threat. The title, of course, is The Avengers, the same name of the Marvel supergroup that's been battling bad guys in the four-color pages of the company's comics since 1963. Geek icon (and part-time comics scribe) Joss Whedon is writing and directing the film, which also stars Samuel L. Jackson as the group's leader, Nick Fury, Scarlett Johansson as the leather-jumpsuit clad spy, the Black Widow and Jeremy Renner as the ace archer, Hawkeye. Naturally, a project as ambitious as The Avengers didn't come together overnight. Marvel has been laying the groundwork for this film since the first Iron Man hit theaters in 2008, slipping in visual and verbal references to Avengers-lore in all their standalone superhero features. Here's a film-by-film guide to some of the Easter Eggs that have pointed the way to The Avengers
Today's Round-Up is a mixed bag. Sometimes you reach in and pull out a nugget of gold, and sometimes you pull out a cow pie. Sometimes you end up with a little of both. Let's just start with what is potentially the biggest pile to come out of the bag: Brett Ratner (Rush Hour 3, X-Men: The Last Stand) is close to signing a deal to direct the half-anticipated, half-dreaded Conan update. On the plus side, the writers reportedly looked to Robert E. Howard's original pulp stories of the 1930s to create their version of the sword-wielding barbarian. On the minus side for Ratner detractors, they're now "doing a quick polish" to work in some of the would-be director's ideas. What those ideas might be is left to your imagination. Perhaps Ratner will work all the crap out of his system on Beverly Hills Cop 4, which he's likely to complete before starting any other project.
Marvel Studios is getting ready to move on their Captain America movie, but first they need to figure out who'll play Steve Rogers, the 98-pound weakling who gets injected with a super-soldier serum that turns him into an American hero during World War II. A list of young American actors who will be screen-tested for the role has been leaked, and it's an interesting mix of square-jawed heartthrobs, teen-playing pretty-boys and Jim Halpert. Two other actors, Jensen Ackles (Supernatural) and Garret Hedlund (Friday Night Lights film), have been removed from consideration due to scheduling conflicts, but these remaining seven all have the potential to be punching Nazis by fall. Or do they? We broke down the pros and cons of having each of them play the First Avenger.
From the perspective of someone who works in an industry where most of the professionals couldn't tell you where their next job is coming from, most people in Hollywood are probably sitting around the dinner table tonight discussing how Robert Downey Jr. is like, totally set for life. The Iron Man actor has signed on to play Tony Stark in three more films. With Iron Man being, well, let's face it, the second-biggest movie of the summer, Marvel Studios nevertheless has about five hundred and seventy eight million ($!) reasons to get him back for a sequel. And while reports aren't out yet as to just how much of that juicy box-office gross they used to lure RDJ back, they got him, and not just for one sequel, but two. Oh, and also what could technically be called a spinoff.
Comic book movie casting news changes faster than Clark Kent in a phone booth. Just a few days ago, Michael Caine (better known as Alfred to some, and as Alfie to others) was telling MTV News that he'd heard it from a Warner Bros. executive that the studio wanted Johnny Depp as the Riddler and Philip Seymour Hoffman as the Penguin. It seemed all but confirmed that Hoffman would waddle onto the big screen as the Bat's next nemesis. When asked about it the next day, though, Hoffman himself denied the long-standing rumor, saying: "No one has talked to me about it, ever -- never." He added that he's "such a fan of those [comic book] movies," but explained that he'd rather watch them than be in them.
For a man who is notoriously the biggest part whore in all of Hollywood, it seems that Samuel L. Jackson may in fact not be playing a role that came his way. It's being reported that Jackson won't be returning as Nick Fury, Director of SHIELD, for any upcoming Marvel Comics movies. The actor, who had a small but no less cool cameo as Fury in an after-credit scene of this spring's smash Iron Man told the Los Angeles Times that he won't be appearing again as Nick Fury in any future Marvel Studios features. According to the actor, negotiations for his return broke down because "there seems to be an economic crisis in the Marvel Comics world." Psst, Sam. It's not just the Marvel Comics world, buddy. You may want to put down that Snakes on a Plane II script and pick up a newspaper.
When The Incredible Hulk arrives on DVD and Blu-ray this October 21, home movie enthusiasts and will have several options to choose from. Collider has reported details about the extra footage that will be available. For those living in the past with mere DVD players (that would be me), there's the standard release, which will contain a little over 13 minutes of scenes deleted from the theatrical release. You can also choose to shell out the extra bucks for a three-disc collection that has almost 30 minutes of deleted footage. But if you've upgraded to a Blu-ray player, an incredible 44 extra minutes will be available to you.