Thursday, October 28, 2010

First View of Evans in Cap Costume

Entertainment Weekly's web site has posted the first image of Chris Evans in costume as Captain America, along with a preview of their upcoming article on the film. You can spy the pic below:

While Evans is a dead ringer for Steve rogers, the costume is a little modified from the comic book version, but in my opinion in a good way. It would be nice to see the head piece, but that may be in the article itself. All in all, the suit looks a lot more practical than the comic version ever has, and the shield looks like it has real heft and the scratches make it seem like it's really deflected machine gun fire.

With the solid comic-con trailer for Thor not too long ago, combined with how Cap looks to be shaping up, the next few years could be something truly exciting for comic fans. A live-action Marvel Universe. I'm jazzed.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Galifianakis Gets Ferned

In an awesome display of bravado, a Texas entertainment reporter named Gordon Keith went to a press junket for Zach Galifianakis' new film It's Kind of a Funny Story and did his interview in the same style of Galifianakis' hugely funny and uncomfortable series of shorts called Between Two Ferns.

What's awesome is watching it slowly dawn on Zach that this is what the guy is doing, and willingly going along. Watch the vid below.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander

The first pics of Rooney Mara in the role of Lisbeth Salander in David Fincher's upcoming adaptation of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo have been released. Now, for those of you who recall Mara in her small, but really solid turn in The Social Network, she looked like so:

And in the recently released pics, she looks like this:

So.....yeah. She looks pretty much exactly like the character. Here's a picture of Daniel Craig as Blomkvist, as well:

All of them look appropriate to the book. And while I have only watched the first one of the Swedish films, I have to say that I liked, but didn't love them. Noomi Rapace was very good, but I still think looked a little too old for the role. Mara's look seems to fit more with my idea of a solidly true outsider. Also, I thought some of the changes made to the story didn't make sense, or weren't as intriguing at the novel. So, I'm all for taking another stab at the story, and David Fincher is awesome, so I'll have faith he can pull it off.

The Doctor Visits the Colonies...

After decades of attempts to film an episode of Doctor Who in the US, it looks as if it is finally going to happen in this upcoming season. The classic series set a story or two in the US, but always filmed at the BBC. The show rather famously attempted to shoot on location in New Orleans in the 1980s, but never managed to make it happen. They did however, shoot in locales such as Paris, Lanzarote, Amsterdam and Spain. Then, the 1996 TV Movie filmed in Vancouver, BC, but was set in San Francisco. Since the series returned in 2005, episodes have been set in Utah and New York, but once again were filmed in the UK. The new series has gone on location in Rome, as well as other locales, but never the US.

Now the Beeb has announced that the two-part premiere of the new season will go on location in the US, for a story set in America in the 1960s. From their press release:

In the special two-parter co-produced with BBC AMERICA, key scenes will be filmed in Utah for a story set in the late '60s in which the Doctor, Amy and Rory find themselves on a secret summons that takes them on an adventure from the desert in Utah - right to the Oval Office itself.

The premiere will also feature the return of Alex Kingston as River Song, and will be written by show runner Steven Moffat.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Snyder Will Direct Superman

According to, well, pretty much everywhere, Zack Snyder has been confirmed as Warner Bros.' choice to direct their upcoming Superman film. It's been pretty much confirmed as well that the new Superman film will not follow on the latest movie, Superman Returns, but will instead be basically a reboot a la Batman Begins.

As previously reported, Christopher Nolan, the director and co-writer behind Batman Begins and The Dark Knight will act as producer and "creative overseer" of the Superman franchise. He is working on the story with his frequent collaborator David Goyer. Snyder is the director of such hits as Dawn of the Dead and 300, as well as the comic adaptation Watchmen. His next film is Sucker Punch.

While some people will meet this news with joy, other will react with dismay. My response is one of puzzlement, truthfully. If this decision was one made solely by the studio, it makes complete sense. Warner's was famously disappointed with Bryan Singer's more thoughtful take on the character, and Snyder is definitely much more visceral and confident with action. Watchmen is already legendary for how it divided fans. I myself thought it was probably the most faithful and effective a film version could be, while also finally admitting the material really doesn't work as a movie.

However, if Nolan was the final word on who would direct, then I'm really scratching my head, as I wouldn't have thought that Snyder was the type of the director Nolan would connect with. Nolan has always been about precision, both in his film making and his story telling. He's been concerned with giving audiences a complex, intricate experience. Say what you want about Snyder, but you could not call his film making intricate. But, maybe this is what the Superman franchise needs in order to kick it off. So, I'll wait. I've got lots of faith in Nolan and Goyer's abilities, and while Snyder seems to me to be a pretty shallow film maker, I can't say I've out and out hated anything he's done.

There better not be any slow motion or "ramping" fights. Seriously, that's getting old.

Friday, October 1, 2010

RIP - Stephen J. Cannell

Stephen Cannell, the prolific writer and television producer whose greatest successes became part of a generation's pop cultural memory, has passed away from melanoma. He was 69.

In his early years, Cannell struggled with dyslexia, and eventually overcame the disorder well enough to become a sought after television writer in the late 1960s. After stints writing for Ironside and Columbo, he became the story editor for Jack Webb's police procedural series Adam-12.

While he had been working steadily, in 1974 he co-created what would be only the first of many mega-successful television series when The Rockford Files debuted. A charming series about affable if long-suffering ex-con turned PI Jim Rockford (James Garner), the series was a critical and popular favourite, buoyed by a central character that seemed to be the antithesis of the cliched hard-boiled cool PI. Rockford had the tried and true noble code, and he was definitely world weary, but he took far more punches than he gave, and lived in a trailer on the beach and was constantly getting a raw deal. The series became a beloved classic for its wit and reliably artifice-free style, combined with Garner's immense charm.

But it was by no means Cannell's sole hit, nor was it his sole hit big enough to indelibly leave its mark on pop culture. The Greatest American Hero was another successful series, less so during its original run, but in the year since it has acquired a powerful cult status, and is fondly remembered by people who watched the series in reruns as kids.

The A-Team was a phenomenon, becoming one of the signature series of the 1980s, and running for five seasons. Following the adventures of four Vietnam war vets falsely accused of a crime they didn't commit, the series was juvenile and campy, but its high action quotient and infectious sense of fun connected with a generation of kids, quickly becoming a classic. It made a super-star of Mr. T and reignited the somewhat stagnant careers of George Peppard and Dirk Benedict. A recent big-screen remake tried but failed to capture the spirit of the original.

Following the end of The A-Team in 1987, Cannell began his long association with the Vancouver film community by shooting his next two projects there. One, Wiseguy, was a dark and complex series following an FBI agent's (Ken Wahl) journey as an undercover operative. The series was not a huge hit, but its dark theme of the loss of identity, and its adult approach to the subject matter was miles away from his previous, campier fare, and it was a major critical success. The other series debuting in 1987 was 21 Jump Street, and once again, Cannell successfully captured lightning in a bottle. The show was a huge hit, and launched the career of a young actor named Johnny Depp. Although Jump Street was more light-hearted than Wiseguy, it also dealt with more serious subject matter and experimented with longer story arcs.

Throughout the 1980s, Cannell created show after show that resonated in some way; Hunter, Hardcastle and McCormick, Stingray and Riptide. He also created some series, that although they were not successful, are now seen as years ahead of their time; Unsub, Tenspeed and Brown Shoe and Profit. In the 1990s, Cannell moved away from network television and embraced syndication, with one of his series, Renegade, becoming the most watched syndicated series of its time after Baywatch. But Cannell moved away from television now, choosing to focus on another type of writing.

Cannell began to write mystery novels, many featuring detective Shane Scully. He found great success as a mystery writer, and even returned to television as an actor in Castle, playing himself as one of the eponymous character's poker buddies, all of whom were famous writers. Cannell is survived by his wife of 46 years, Marcia, and their three children and three grandchildren.