Dwayne Johnson’s ‘Jungle Cruise’ Disney Movie Is Official

If we’re going to have a movie based on a theme park ride, then at least it stars Dwayne Johnson. The Rock himself has been attached to a Jungle Cruise movie, based on the Disney adventure, since 2015, but the project has gone through a number of script rewrites and changes (which feels like a smart move). But Johnson is also a very busy actor, attached to so many projects it’s hard to keep up. Nevertheless, it looks like Jungle Cruise will get slotted into spring of 2018 to start production.

As THR reports, Johnson will again team up with Dany Garcia, his co-CEO of the production company Seven Bucks, which is also behind Ballers, Baywatch, the Jumanji remake. Now that a new Jungle Cruise script by J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay reportedly looks solid, it seems the Rock is ready,


James Cameron Regaining Rights To ‘Terminator’

The Terminator franchise is one of the most iconic action staples of all time, but it’s had a rough couple of decades. However, if you’ve been waiting for a time-travelling postapocalyptic killer robot return to form, now’s the time to start pricking up your ears. James Cameron regains the rights to the property in 2019 when his copyright reversion goes into effect and he’s already got his eye on a new iteration.

Per Deadline, Cameron is “godfathering” a new incarnation of the film with Deadpool director Tim Miller in early talks to helm what the report calls “a reboot and a conclusion of one of cinema’s great science fiction tales.” David Ellison, the Skydance boss who co-financed Terminator: Genisys, is working with top science fiction authors to “find the movie creatively”, which is a bit vague but sounds like it might be a writer’s room. There are no details yet on whether the new Terminator movie would be a reboot or a direct sequel.

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‘Sicario’ Sequel Story Details Teased

Director Denis Villeneuve’s thriller really felt like a satisfying, whole piece, and the film’s rich thematic subtext—from America’s foreign policy with regards to violence to what it’s like to be a woman in a man’s world—offered more than enough reason to return for repeating viewings. Regardless, the Sicario sequel Soldado materialized quite quickly, with screenwriter Taylor Sheridan (who also penned this year’s indie darling Hell or High Water) also returning to pen the screenplay.

But Soldado is missing a couple of big pieces of the Sicario puzzle: star Emily Bluntand Villeneuve. Indeed, the follow-up continues on without Blunt’s character, with Benicio Del Toro’s hitman and Josh Brolin’s CIA operative instead taking the lead, while Stefano Sollima—who helmed the TV series Gomorrah—takes over directing duties.

But with Blunt’s character absent, will Soldado feel like a true sequel or more of a spin-off?

“It’s more of a stand-alone spin-off. It’s not a sequel or a prequel. It really is yet another examination told from this male point of view, rather than from a female point of view. It’s pretty cool.”

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‘Green Hornet’ Reboot In The Works

Next to Disney and WB, Paramount Pictures is doing a superhero movie of its own, and the studio has nabbed a promising director to bring the project to life. Per Deadline, The Accountant and Warrior helmer Gavin O’Connor is attached to direct The Green Hornet for Paramount and Chernin Entertainment. The idea here is to put a serious twist on the crime fighter, with this new movie re-envisioning Britt Reid as “an edgy protagonist capable of being the catalyst for a new franchise.” Sean O’Keefe is penning the script and will work closely with O’Connor to develop the film, which O’Connor will also produce.

The Green Hornet made his debut as a radio serial and subsequently moved into the realm of comic books. The hero, Britt Reid, is a wealthy newspaper publisher who moonlights as a masked crime-fighting vigilante, working alongside his loyal partner and driver Kato. It’s basically Batman with a few minor tweaks, and while Green Hornet predates Batman by a couple of years (1936 vs. 1939), Batman clearly went more theatrical and, as a result, became more popular.

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Daniel Craig On Bond Return: “I Would Miss It Terribly”

One of the biggest questions is, will Daniel Craig return to play 007 one more time? He’s said multiple times Spectre would be his last go in the iconic role, but he’s also vaguely kept hope alive.

When you’re asked 20 feet from the end of a marathon whether you’d do another marathon, the answer is simple. It’s like, “No, I won’t.” But the things I get to do on a Bond movie and what the type of work it is, there is no other job like it, there is no other job like, and if I were to stop doing it, just say, I would miss it terribly because you are working with — I maybe disparagingly said the movie industry’s getting a little bit of, you know, of the focus group thing and the whole thing. A Bond movie doesn’t work like that, it’s literally from the skin of your teeth you get it out and then it’s released less than six months later after you finish it. There’s no time for focus groups. There’s no time for that. You make the movie, it gets out. It’s one of the most thrilling things as an actor you can do.

Producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson told reporters on the set of Spectre that Craig now has an “open-ended contract,” though executive producer Callum McDougall recently said he’s “absolutely” their “first choice.”

The first order of business, however, is finding a distribution home for Bond, as Spectre marked the end of EON’s deal with Sony Pictures. A bidding war is expected to ensue, with Sony keen on continuing the partnership while folks like Warner Bros. would love to bring Bond into their fold. Once that’s settled, the “Daniel Craig” question will likely be answered once and for all.

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‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ Synopsis Teases Epic Battle

It was announced today that the first footage from the sequel will be unveiled at New York Comic-Con, with director Matt Reeves, star Andy Serkis, and producer Dylan Clark sharing a first look at the film on Thursday, October 6th.

The first official synopsis for War for the Planet of the Apes has also been unveiled:

In War for the Planet of the Apes, the third chapter of the critically acclaimed blockbuster franchise, Caesar and his apes are forced into a deadly conflict with an army of humans led by a ruthless Colonel. After the apes suffer unimaginable losses, Caesar wrestles with his darker instincts and begins this own mythic quest to avenge his kind. As the journey finally brings them face to face, Caesar and the Colonel are pitted against each other in an epic battle that will determine the fate of both their species and the future of the planet.

Aided by absolutely stunning motion-capture technology, Rise of the Planet of the Apes offered up a compelling origin story for Caesar and the eventual rise of the Apes. And now with War for the Planet of the Apes, it appears we’ll get to see the turning point in the war that finally tips the apes in favor of the humans.

Be on the lookout for the first look at footage or imagery from the film soon as the NYCC panel kicks off next week. War for the Planet of the Apes opens in theaters on July 14, 2017.

Justin Lin to Direct a ‘Hot Wheels’ Movie

Mattel Entertainment and Legendary are now teaming up for a Hot Wheels movie in earnest. The toy car icon will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in the summer of 2018, so I’d be surprised if they weren’t aiming for a well-timed release date.

Since 2011, Legendary was in talks to acquire the movie rights from Mattel. Since then, the project has seen such names as McG and Simon Crane temporarily occupy the director’s chair, but Justin Lin is the name of the game today. Via THR, Lin “has closed a deal to develop, direct and produce, via his Perfect Storm Entertainment, a feature based on popular car toyline from Mattel.”

Lin just closed out Star Trek Beyond for Paramount earlier this year and is next looking forward to helming the possible Space Jam sequel to name just two. Lin has experience having directed the third through sixth installments of the Fast and Furious series, so he might actually be able to make a Hot Wheels film work where others like Need for Speed failed. Meanwhile, Mattel Entertainment also has the upcoming movie projects Masters of the Universe and Barbie at Sony, and Monster High set up at Universal.

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‘Jumanji’: New Details Reveal Video Game Theme

The movie, led by Kevin Hart and Dwayne Johnson, in the jungle, which spurred a few questions about Doctor Who breakout Karen Gillan‘s outfit in the movie.

Well, some of those questions should be answered by the revelations about the movie that have come to light. Younger cast members have been added to the cast – Alex WolffSer’Darius Blain, Madison Iseman, and the formerly announced Morgan Turner – and that the movie will focus on a video game of Jumanji that their characters are sucked into to become the avatars played by Johnson, Hart, Gillan, and Jack Black. If the Jumanji game is meant to be an amalgamation of cues from popular adventure games, Gillan looking like Lara Croft suddenly makes a little more sense, even if the good intentions still seem a bit dubious.

THR reports that Wolff’s character will be in control of Johnson’s Dr. Bravestone, but none of the other match-ups have been confirmed yet. Not for nothing does Dr. Bravestone also seem very similar to the lead hero of Uncharted, which ironically seems like it would be the perfect fit for a prime Dwayne Johnson performance.

‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ Prequel Reportedly Being Made

A new report from Australia’s Herald Sun states that a Mad Max: Fury Road prequel is not only in the works over at Warner Bros., it could start filming in Australia as soon as this year with George Miller returning at the helm. Now that is the kind of story I would love to believe, but there are a few odd bits that leave a lot of room for questions.

Here’s what the Herald Sun is saying:

The prequel to Mad Max: Fury Road starring TOM HARDY will be filmed in and around Broken Hill…

Pre-production is gearing up on the multi-million-dollar action-packed Warner Bros franchise, with NSW’s Broken Hill Studios Miller’s first choice for shooting, which could start as soon as later this year. Mad Max 4 was plagued by delays when extended rain turned the desert green and the uber director had to move location to Namibia…

The script is said to focus on the backstory of Furiosa, played by Oscar winner CHARLIZE THERON.

‘G.I. Joe 3’ Delayed Due to The Rock’s Schedule

Back in 2009, Paramount Pictures and Hasbro rolled out their live-action G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra adaptation, hoping for a repeat of the 2007 live-action Transformers success.

Unfortunately, building your franchise on the a busy actor like Dwayne Johnson means that continuing your franchise is now dependent on his schedule. That fact was confirmed by co-star Byung-hun Lee during a recent chat with LRM (via ScreenRant) during TIFF.

“I heard from the studio that there’s a possibility to do the third one, but I think they’re waiting for the actors’ schedules. They’re arranging the schedules for the actors, especially Dwayne Johnson.”

Lee and co-star Ray Park have been in contact:

“Him and I always talk about those kinds of ideas and some other projects and what if we do some things. We always talk, but it’s just talk.”

Johnson will lend his voice to the Disney film Moana and will star in the anticipated 2017 films Fast 8BaywatchJourney 3, and Jumanji. As if that all wasn’t enough already, he’s poised to enter Warner Bros.’ DC Extended Universe as Black Adam, antagonist to Captain Marvel in Shazam!, scheduled for 2019. 

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Tomb Raider Star Alicia Vikander On Lara Croft And Her Origins

The Tomb Raider video game franchise began in 1996, and in the two decades since there have been many sequels and iterations of the adventure game series featuring heroine Lara Croft, as well as two major motion pictures starring Angelina Jolie. After the well-received reboot of the video game series from 2013, now Hollywood is looking to revamp the film version of this franchise by going a similar route.

As previously announced, Oscar winner Alicia Vikander is the new Lara Croft, with Roar Uthaug behind the director’s chair. Vikander now had more to say about that and what it could mean for her character.

During an interview with Collider concerning her upcoming film The Light Between Oceans, Vikander spoke about the prospect of signing on to lead a big franchise:

“With these big films… for me it’s really all about the filmmaker, and then of course the character and the story. I find that — big blockbuster movies, I grew up with, and… I think the thrill of being part of making one myself would be extraordinary. But it also comes down to, I met Roar and I’d seen The Wave and a few of his other Norwegian films and it’s with the kind of chance to make this story now, based on the rebooted game which is more of an origin story.

“You could intervene hopefully a great story and a great arc and then within that, have a very entertaining adventure film, which I loved  growing up. And I played the game when I was a kid [laughs]. It was really the real first protagonist I had seen in a video game at that point. And of course Angelina Jolie made her into an icon. So it’s cool to try to step into the shoes and we’re hoping to make something that will hopefully will be fresh and new.”

As poor as the track record with video game movies is, it is promising to know there is good thought going into this upcoming reboot of the film series and solid talent attached. It’s encouraging to see a major studio putting a big budget behind an adventure film in the hope of creating something comparable to Indiana Jones for a franchise with a female lead.

Of course, this is still a video game movie. 2016 has already seen a couple of attempts to break the curse,with Warcraft and The Angry Birds Movie, and hope currently seems to lie with the upcoming Assassin’s Creed, starring Vikander’s Light Between Oceans co-star Michael Fassbender.

Time will tell, and surely fans will have to eventually get a video game movie that is truly great.

Tomb Raider will arrive in theaters on March 16, 2018.

Dwayne Johnson Wraps Filming on ‘Fast 8’

After having beef with Vin Diesel on the set of Fast 8, Dwayne Johnson has finally wrapped filming on the action sequel, but there’s no slowing down the Rock when it comes to upcoming projects. The actor has already shot Baywatch this year, he’s done with Fast 8, and now he’s moving on to Jumanji in two weeks. Johnson will co-star with Kevin Hart and Jack Black in the upcoming film, which will be directed by Jake Kasdan (Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story). The actor said that the movie is “a continuation of the awesome JUMANJI story” (i.e. a legacyquel).

Check out Johnson’s Instagram post. Fast 8 opens April 14, 2017 and Jumanjiopens July 28, 2017.

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