Warner Bros

Godzilla 1954

According to Variety, Godzilla making $93m (and $103m more outside the US)  in its opening weekend is enough for Warner Bros. and Legendary to partner up on a sequel. A franchise has officially been born, and since franchises no longer die (see: Spider-Man et al.), that means Godzilla is going to be staring hungrily at buildings and trains for years to come. Just look at that face. He’s practically drooling. Of course, another 60 years of movies is a nice present for the misunderstood monster’s 60th birthday. Fortunately, even though our reviewer wasn’t a big fan, most people seem happy with the latest outing, particularly the last 30 minutes. Particularly coming off the 1998 disaster, Gareth Edwards has crafted something impressive. Now, since we’re bound to see Godzilla 2 (hopefully versus Batman) in 2017, there’s a full range of older enemies for him to face, the small possibility of the filmmakers coming up with new enemies and the fan-favorite impossibility of a Pacific Rim crossover. Since we only know that the wheels are turning, there are plenty of questions for the franchise to face. Whether or not they’ll stick with Edwards or if he’ll move on to a movie that isn’t based on terrifying beasties being the first on the list. Second on the list is what will happen if Godzilla’s box office take drops the same way Amazing Spider-Man 2 did in its second weekend. Granted, we’re getting a sequel for it, too. It’s unlikely anyone will be angry about a new take on this […]

read more...

Newt Scamander in FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM

Because seven books and eight films were not enough to satiate the minds of millions of ungrateful little muggles around the world, JK Rowling has been put to work writing not one, but three spinoffs to the Harry Potter series. The already published Harry Potter extension/textbook Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will now be a trilogy and therefore three movies, according to the author who probably needs a break to luxuriate in her money pond. These aren’t just going to be any films, though; they’re going to be “megamovies,” if you’d care to listen to Warner Bros. Given the prolific stature of the Harry Potter franchise, the studio is probably right on the money with that designation. Do you hear the teens lining up to buy their tshirts at Hot Topic right now? Back in September when the Fantastic Beasts project was freshly announced, Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara was secretive about the nature of Rowling’s new baby, only revealing that his studio was hoping to build a film franchise out of the book. With three on the way, it’s time for Potter 2.0.

read more...

Fox

The above image is what might happen if an actor forgets his lines on the set of The Jungle Book. According to THR, Andy Serkis is making the jump from playing apes of all sizes and second unit directing for The Hobbit to making his first feature. Just to be clear, this is the Warners Bros. live-action version and not the Disney live-action version being directed by Jon Favreau. If a third studio decides they want to have a say in Rudyard Kipling’s classic, it’ll get confusing. Warners has a steady history of taking interesting risks, and this is a perfect example of something that’s yawn-worthy being transformed by a left-field hire. The sound you just heard is attention being piqued. Or created altogether. Before Serkis, the prospect of another version of the little boy lost story was more what-happened-to-creativity nonsense, but that doesn’t mean that the project gets a stamp of approval all the sudden. Still, Serkis is an inspired choice. The rare actor making the jump to directing who has not only trained with a great talent, but who has worked alongside one in Peter Jackson.

read more...

Man from UNCLE

Guy Ritchie’s take on NBC’s espionage series is arriving early next year, with a theatrical debut January 16, 2015, over Martin Luther King weekend. Starring Man of Steel’s Henry Cavill, this will be the first return of the property to mainstream audiences in over thirty years. The Man from U.N.C.L.E. ran from 1964 to 1968, and starred secret agents Illya Kuryakin (David McCallum) and, no joke, a guy named Napoleon Solo (Robert Vaughn), as a two-man team defending the free world from the nefarious organization, THRUSH. One of the unique aspects of the show was creator Sam Rolfe and producer Norman Felton’s narrative of international cooperation, with the two main agents hailing from North America and Russia, working for an international organization united under one cause.

read more...

Ron Howard

With director Alejandro González Iñárritu (21 Grams, Babel) dropping out of the project due to scheduling issues related to post-production duties on his latest film, Birdman, Warner Bros. has approached Ron Howard to take the helm on their live-action adaptation of The Jungle Book. The script, written by screenwriter Callie Kloves, is an adaptation from novelist and poet Rudyard Kipling’s short stories featuring feral jungle child, Mowgli, and his animal pals Bagheera and Baloo, and the ever awful Bengal tiger, Shere Khan.

read more...

Tarzan

Pre-production has officially begun on the Alexander Skarsgård-led Tarzan movie from Warner Bros., set to be filmed in 3D, and coming with a swath of big names attached. Due to arrive July 1, 2016, Harry Potter vet David Yates will direct the live-action film, with a screenplay based on the writings of Tarzan creator and author Egar Rice Burroughs, whom also created the much beloved John Carter. Yates’ film will be joining Zack Snyder’s 2016 untitled Man of Steel sequel as yet another big, summer tentpole for Warner Bros. What a difference a new year makes, as April of 2013, the project was considered mothballed due to budgetary and casting issues, the most noteworthy of which was a rumored difficulty in getting Academy Award-winning actor Jamie Foxx onboard. It appears now that Foxx may be out of the equation all the same, as the current cast includes The Wolf of Wall Street star Margot Robbie as Jane, Django Unchained actor Christoph Waltz, and Samuel L. Jackson (who is not Laurence Fishburne). Jessica Chastain was also a name attached to the project last year, but like Foxx, also appears to have moved on.

read more...

Hollywood

All this week, Film School Rejects presents a daily dose of our favorite articles from the archive. Originally published in September 2011, Ashe Cantrell pulls back the curtain on the Hollywood conspiracy machine… You may already be a film industry cynic. Maybe you think Hollywood is a barren wasteland, devoid of creativity and originality. Maybe you’re sick of seeing talented people get ignored and vapid hacks get splashed all over the trades. Maybe you’re tired of 3D everything and having to re-buy your movies every five to ten years. I’m not here to dissuade you of any of that. Hell no, I’m here to make it worse. Get ready, because this is some of the rottenest shit of which the film industry is capable. These are the things so terrible that Hollywood has to cover them up, lest God see their sin and smite them accordingly (and keep various government entities and lawyers off their backs, of course). If you still had any kind thoughts toward Hollywood, I suggest you prepare yourself for crushing disappointment. But first, I’d like to give a very huge shout out and thank you to writers C. Coville and Maxwell Yezpitelok for their help on this article. You guys are great! And now back to the shit storm, already in progress:

read more...

Man of Steel

When I was a kid, we went on a lot of road trips. When I say a lot, I mean a lot. Summers usually meant that we were gone nearly every weekend in the travel trailer my dad hauled behind his suburban, off for a new campground somewhere in Texas. He even drove that thing to Orlando one year, taking my mother, brother and me to DisneyWorld, staying at Disney’s rustic Fort Wilderness. Great trip, but that is a long trip from the DFW Metroplex. This was the day and age before iPods, iPads, and Kindles, so I usually relegated myself to the way, way back with a stack of comic books, or a science fiction novel. Thankfully, my mom encouraged my reading, and a trip meant that she would pick up a book for me (or sometimes, even let me pick one) from the spinner racks at the grocery store checkout. Speaking of those, do they even exist anymore? These days you never see books for sale at the checkout, and if you do, chances are it’s a Harlequin romance. Blurgh. At one point, my mom picked up a novelization of a movie for me, giving me a chance to read the story before I’d seen the film. I can’t remember exactly which movie it was… probably The Empire Strikes Back. But I readily recall reading novelizations for The Last Starfighter, Tron, The Goonies, Explorers, and even a couple of Knight Rider adaptations, including the classic “Trust Doesn’t Rust” episode, which […]

read more...

Scooby Doo

According to Variety, Warners is ready to answer the age-old question, “Scooby Doo, where are you?” The studio is prepping an animated feature for the world’s most famous sandwich-eating dog with the same producers that worked to bring the 2002 live-action/CGI hybrid to life. Charles Roven and Richard Suckle will be producing from a script from Matt Lieberman who recently wrote the Short Circuit reboot. The studio isn’t revealing the concept, but they won’t get away with it if the meddling internet has anything to say. The character has been through a ton of incarnations (the best, of course, involving the Harlem Globetrotters), but anytime someone plans new Scooby Doo, there’s a potential for goofy greatness. Naturally it’s difficult to see new stuff without Don Messick voicing Scoobs, but maybe there’s a great vocal talent that can do the character justice. Neil Fanning was passable in the live-action movies, and there’s a chance a CGI Doo was going to be alienating no matter what, but there might be someone even better out there. If they can nail that down and come up with a fun mystery, this could be a good one. Glad to see there’s still interest in the gang.

read more...

THE CONJURING

When Warner Bros. put The Hangover into production, they gave Todd Phillips $35M and a ton of creative freedom (they only seemed to intervene when the director wanted to use real Tasers on his actors). The idea was that if he stayed under that budget, he could cast who he wanted (those guys?) and make the comedy he envisioned with limited studio interference. It was an admirable move that became even easier to praise when the movie destroyed box office records and launched a franchise with three new stars. The Conjuring is a different beast, but its connection to The Hangover (not simply that they have the same distributor) is an interesting one for the sole reason of timing. Released months apart from each other, the final Hangover installment scored another $112M domestic from a budget of $103M (from humble beginnings…), and in less time, James Wan‘s haunted house movie will overtake that domestic amount for $15M less than the cost of the original Hangover. There’s a big lesson here, and hopefully Hollywood is paying attention (but they probably aren’t).

read more...

akira

By the time Orphan and Unknown director Jaume Collet-Serra was originally hired to helm the live-action adaptation of the legendary manga and anime property “Akira,” the project had already seen so many ups and downs and been forced into so many compromises that we reacted incredulously to the idea that he’d ever actually get the job done. Sure enough, a number of months later it was announced that, due to problems with budget, script, and casting, the entire production was being put on hold. It wasn’t long after this hiccup that Collet-Serra, an in-demand director, dropped off the project completely in order to head for greener pastures, thus rendering Akira delayed indefinitely Despite all of this, Akira has long proven to be a project that refuses to die, just about as fervently as it refuses to live, so of course there are reports that the whole thing is about to start up production all over again.

read more...

Batman Beyond

The heat of Comic-Con might already be getting to people because there’s a rumor going around that Warners is considering tapping into Batman Beyond for their post-Nolan reboot of the character. That’s according to Bill Ramey at Batman On Film, who is hearing “some whispers” that a movie version of the future-set animated show where Bruce Wayne passes the utility belt to teenager Terry McGinnis is “on the table” as a potential direction to take the character. The only problem is that there’s no way it’s going to happen. Full stop. It’s possible that it’s out there in a no-idea-is-a-bad-idea way, but if Warners is serious about Justice League, they’ll quickly shove Batman Beyond off the table. Ramey disagrees with that point, saying, “If you don’t think a solo Batman film series based on Batman Beyond would mesh with a [DC Universe] on film — if there ever is one — you’d be wrong. The ‘in his prime’ Bruce Wayne Batman could potentially be in a team-up film, while the aged and retired Bruce Wayne Batman would be the version of the same character in the Beyond solo films. Think ‘non-linear’ — same Batman, different time periods.” It’s not that the worlds don’t mesh; it’s that they don’t mesh easily. I love the wishful thinking, but there’s no chance a studio could (or would want to) sell “It’s Batman, but not Batman,” to general audiences.

read more...

Henry Cavill Clark Kent

In perhaps the first indication of level-headed thinking at the studio, Henry Cavill is claiming that Warners isn’t going to rush into Justice League. Until now, all public information (including rumors) indicated that the studio was testing the waters to see how much interest there would be in an attempt for them to have a delicious Avengers-style cake without following the slow cooker recipe. This was all before the litmus test of Man of Steel, but even though it’s been a big success, the star is indicating that the horses haven’t left the stable quite yet for a team-up flick. In an interview with ABC News (via Variety), Cavill said, “Justice League could be great if done correctly. It’s a very tough one to do because the DC comic heroes are all god-like in their power. So in this real world universe, real-world setting we’re telling our story in, it’s going to be tough to achieve that. It has to be done very delicately with a lot of thought. So, it won’t be right away. I hope it’s not, anyway. It may take some time of building up other movies and other characters and introducing them together in one way or another.” Imagine that. An actor who understands the nature of the narrative difficulty and the need to build things with purpose instead of throwing a mess of superheroes together and shouting, “Hey! We thought that’s what you people wanted!”.

read more...

Justice League Alex Ross

If the development of Warner Bros.’ potential Justice League movie has been following the classic, serial storytelling structure, we’re now be at the point where the Joker and Lex Luthor have the League tied up and hanging precariously over a giant vat of acid. Will they be able to find a way to escape and triumph over the bad guys before their dastardly device dips them down into the deadly drum of despair? Tune in next week to find out! The basic timeline of The Justice League’s development goes like this: comic book competitor Marvel made the gross national product of a pretty respectable country by teaming up all of their biggest heroes for Joss Whedon’s The Avengers, so Warner Bros., who own the DC comics stable of characters, instantly became jealous. Over the past decade or so the only success they’ve had with comic book movies has come from Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight franchise, and they want a much bigger piece of that superhero pie. Their answer to this problem? Team up all of the DC characters like Marvel did and stick them in a Justice League movie, ASAP. The original plan was to have The Justice League be released in 2015, and instead of having a series of solo movies leading into the ensemble film like Marvel did, they were going to skip right to the money-making team-up thing first, and then try to spin solo franchises out of that. The film wouldn’t come completely without groundwork being […]

read more...

Bradley Cooper

After The Hangover made unheard of gobs of money, some of the sharper minds in Hollywood started to wonder if its appeal was just a fluke, or if one if its featured performers, Bradley Cooper, might be ready to step out of comedy ensembles and anchor his own films as a star. He got his shot with Limitless, and was largely successful, so after that things seemed to be full-speed ahead for Bradley Cooper: movie star. Now that he’s gotten an Oscar nomination for his work in Silver Linings Playbook, he sees his career reaching yet another crossroads, however. If he’s able to keep the momentum of this newfound respect and recognition going over the course of his next few film choices, we could see him become one of the premiere names in Hollywood: a George Clooney, Brad Pitt, or a Tom Cruise. So, what’s the first post-nomination job that he’s accepted? According to Deadline, Warner Bros. has just closed what’s being described as a “high six figure deal” to obtain the rights to the Howard Blum book “Dark Invasion,” which they intend on developing as the next big starring vehicle for Cooper. “Dark Invasion” is a new book that hasn’t hit shelves yet, so probably you’re wondering what it’s all about. Is it a sweeping sci-fi epic involving star ships and invading alien hordes? No, not at all. Turns out it’s a non-fiction thriller set back in 1915.

read more...

John McAfee

If you’ve read Joshua Davis’ shocking “Wired” article, “John McAfee’s Last Stand,” which chronicles the strange places anti-virus software creator John McAfee’s life has gone in recent years, then you know that he’s not the sort of person you typically envision when you think of someone who used to program for NASA. Instead what you get is a vision of a tattooed gun nut whose recent life has involved alleged murders, isolated compounds in Belize, police conspiracies, accusations of narcotics trafficking, escapes to Guatemala, fake heart attacks, and an eventual deportation back to the United States. Sounds like an interesting story, right? The kind that could make for a good movie? Yeah, you see where this is going. Variety has learned that Warner Bros. is in final negotiations to acquire the film rights to Davis’ article, and they’ve hired the Crazy, Stupid, Love team of John Requa and Glenn Ficarra to adapt it into a screenplay and direct it as a feature. Seeing as Requa and Ficarra have already done interesting work adapting somebody’s crazy real-life story into a feature film with 2009’s I Love You Phillip Morris, they’re likely to be a good fit to bring to life a character as eccentric and mysterious as McAfee.

read more...

news_brad pitt eating

Pontius Pilate, like Benedict Arnold after him, lived in a time of great political and social unrest. Big things were happening, many sides were battling against each other, feelings were running deep, and tempers were flaring. Each was faced with a fateful decision that forced them to choose which side to come down on, which warring faction to appease, and in the end the decisions they made were so poor that they didn’t just make them failures or losers, they made them into history’s most despised villains, the sorts of names who will never be forgotten due to their infamy. Bad for a guy like Pontius Pilate, sure, but a dissection of the political and religious turmoil that led to his decision of whether or not to authorize the crucifixion of Jesus Christ sounds like it could make for a really good movie. Or, at least, that’s what Warner Bros has been hoping ever since they bought Vera Blasi’s script for the period drama Pontius Pilate. By all accounts Blasi’s script is rich, complicated, and full of character, which would suggest the title role is going to require not a movie star like most big budget period pics, but a real actor capable of giving a rich, nuanced performance. The good news for Pontius Pilate is that it looks like it might be getting both.

read more...

Justice League Alex Ross

Development has really been heating up the over that Justice League movie. A few months ago, Gangster Squad writer Will Beall was hired to handle script duties, there was word Warner Bros. was eying Ben Affleck to direct, and then we got a director short list including the Wachowskis, Ruben Fleischer, and, who could forget, Brett Ratner. Today the project became even more real, thanks to a resolved legal dispute. The Los Angeles Times is reporting the studio is gearing up fast for a 2013 shoot and a 2015 release, which would pit the film up against The Avengers 2. After that, mostly depending on whether the film’s a hit or not, Warners would then follow up the film with a reboot of Batman and solo films following whatever heroes they decide to put in the movie. So if any of you have been holding your breath for a Hawkman movie, then perhaps your big dream may finally come true.

read more...

Looney Tunes

Given the shoddy treatment Jim Henson’s Muppets characters got through much of the ’90s and the ’00s, last year’s refresher of their property, The Muppets, was welcomed as a huge breath of fresh air. Finally somebody with true affection for these beloved characters gave them a big screen vehicle that skillfully treated them with the respect they deserve. Things are arguably looking worse for Warner Bros.’ Looney Tunes franchise than they ever did for the Muppets though. The last time these characters hit the big screen was in 2003’s already-forgotten Looney Tunes: Back in Action, and the last time they felt remotely relevant was when they appeared in Space Jam in 1996. Here is a stable of characters that was beloved for decades, whose earliest animated works are still held up in knowledgeable circles as being enduring pieces of modern art, and we can’t even get them a decent Space Jam sequel? What gives? Hopefully all this is about to change, because the brothers Warner are putting together a new feature for Bugs, Daffy, and crew, and it sounds like they’re taking the The Muppets approach that resulted in that property enjoying newfound relevance. What are the similarities here? Well, according to THR [via Slashfilm], the studio is looking outside the insular animated world and giving the job of putting this film together to people who are known for doing other things, but still have a deep, abiding affection for animated weirdness.

read more...

Tom Hardy, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Tobey Maguire are primarily known for being three of the most famous actors in the world, but did you also know that they’re all animal lovers? Well, they are. Or, at least, they’re looking to market a new movie to animal lovers. THR is reporting that the trio has teamed up to produce a new (still untitled) feature for Warner Bros. that will detail the horrific world of animal trafficking. Reportedly the film will look at the grizzly business from all the different angles, from the poaching of the animal out of the wild, to the way it gets chopped up and turned into boots or whatever (See my loafers? Former gophers). It’s going to be kind of like how Steven Soderbergh took an extensive look at drug trafficking in Traffic, or how The Wire looked at how Baltimore street crime affected every aspect of the city, only more horrific because of the inclusion of cuddly things that get mistreated. Why are these three guys the ones who are involved? Well, apparently the idea for the film comes from Hardy, who has friends who are former Special Forces operatives turned anti-poaching mercenaries in South Africa. And Maguire and DiCaprio? They’re just best buds who have done a lot of animal rights stuff in the past. Combine all three and you don’t quite get Captain Planet, but it’s close.

read more...
NEXT PAGE  
Some movie websites serve the consumer. Some serve the industry. At Film School Rejects, we serve at the pleasure of the connoisseur. We provide the best reviews, interviews and features to millions of dedicated movie fans who know what they love and love what they know. Because we, like you, simply love the art of the moving picture.
Comic-Con 2014
Summer Box Office Prediction Challenge
Got a Tip? Send it here:
editors@filmschoolrejects.com
Publisher:
Neil Miller
Managing Editor:
Scott Beggs
Associate Editors:
Rob Hunter
Kate Erbland
Christopher Campbell
All Rights Reserved © 2006-2014 Reject Media, LLC | Privacy Policy | Design & Development by Face3