Dr. Strange movie coming after The Avengers

Mystic Update: Outspoken Doctor Strange fan Neil Gaiman (Beowulf) says he would love to write the movie.

Kevin Feige, president of production for Marvel Studios, has expressed his enthusiasm at the thought of a Dr. Strange movie.

“Very much so,” Feige said. “I’d say in the next year, year and a half, as we start putting together our film slate for 2012 and 2013, I would not be shocked if we saw Dr. Strange on those lists. I love the idea of tapping into the magical realm of the Marvel Universe, which is fairly significant and hasn’t yet seen life on screen.

I’ll admit to not knowing that much about the character, but Doctor Strange is the “Sorcerer Supreme” in the Marvel Universe and was created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko, who also co-created Spider-Man. Head over to his Wikipedia page to know more.

There has actually been a live-action adaptation of the comic book before, which was a TV-movie for CBS back in 1978 (trailer here) and was apparently relatively well received. Other than that the character has appeared on screen in a number of Marvel animated series and had his own straight-to-DVD animated film in 2007 (trailer here).

The mega-successes of Iron Man and The Dark Knight this year are a sure sign that comic book movies still attract moviegoers, and one can only appreciate the way Marvel is taking more control over its properties and making them share a same continuity, as they should. That being said, how do you feel about a Dr. Strange flick? Vote and tell me in the comments.

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Movie Of The Day: Mallrats (1995)

Note: This marks the second in a series of “Movies Of The Day” that covers writer/director/actor Kevin Smith’s View Askewniverse films. For the first films review, Clerks., click here.

Set the day before Clerks., Mallrats centers on Brodie Bruce and T.S. Quint, two best friends who’ve been dumped by their respective girlfriends on the same day. At Brodie’s urging, the pair decide to go hang out at the local mall where, as luck would have their exes are spending the day too. Amidst pop-culture-related debates, sex talk, and run-ins with  dealers/mischief makers Jay and Silent Bob, Brodie and T.S. will attempt to win back their significant others.

Mallrats stars Jason Lee (Alvin And The Chipmunks), Jeremy London (7th Heaven), Shannen Doherty (The CW’s 90210), Claire Forlani (Hallam Foe/Mister Foe), Ben Affleck (Hollywoodland), Joey Lauren Adams (The Break-Up), Ethan Suplee (Mr. Woodcock) and Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee. Jason Mewes and Kevin Smith reprise their Clerks. roles, and Brian O’Halloran makes an appearance as his Clerks. character’s cousin. Most of these actors have gone on to appear in subsequent Smith films in these and/or different roles. Trailer and review after the jump. Continue reading

Thor finally gets a director, maybe

After director Matthew Vaughn (Stardust) bailed out to helm Kick-Ass and D.J. Caruso (Eagle Eye) threw his name in the mix, another filmmaker is now attached to Marvel Studios’ forthcoming adaptation of the comic book Thor, one that is the most unusual and the most interesting.

Indeed it’s none other than Northern Irish actor/director Kenneth Branagh (Much Ado About Nothing), who is probably being sought for his strong affinity with shakespearean themes, which are apparently prominent in the comic. If this pans out, I’m convinced Branagh could churn out an amazing film.

Thor will be firmly set in the same continuity as Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk and other forthcoming Marvel films, and like those movies will lead into the planned 2011 The Avengers movie. Thor will be released in 2010. The screenplay was written by Mark Protosevich (I Am Legend).

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Eva Longoria for Wasp?

Overrated beauty Eva Longoria (ABC’s Desperate Housewives) has recently visited Marvel Studios’ offices, leaving with a bunch of comic books and a business card, and apparently many believe she’s in talks to play Wasp/Janet Van Dyne in the forthcoming Avengers movie planned for 2011 and set up by various other comic book films such as Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk.

Wasp is one of the first Avengers and a character I’ve surprisingly absolutely never heard of before. According to Wikipedia, Wasp’s abilities include size manipulation, flight, bio-electric energy blasts and telepathic insect control… Eva Longoria is certainly sexy enough (at least with makeup on) but what do you think? Are you looking forward to Eva floating like a butterfly, stinging like a bee?

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Fun Stuff: Which Marvel hero are you?

Ever wondered which Marvel hero you were most like? Well, now’s your lucky day thanks to this great quiz from Liquid Generation. With 26 possible outcomes, you’ll be able to find out whether you’re more of a wisecracking Spider-Man or a badass Wolverine. All I can say is, where’s the DC version?

Personally, my result is Hulk, which is surprisingly fitting…in other words, you wouldn’t like me when I’m angry. What Marvel character did you turn out to be?

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The Dark Tower to proceed once Lost finishes

Legendary author Stephen King (The Mist) is a big fan of ABC’s hit show Lost, to the extent of optioning the movie rights of his Dark Tower series to its creators for only nineteen dollars more than a year ago. In a recent interview, one of them, Damon Lindelof, states that they will only really start on the adaptation once Lost is over.

“The Dark Tower is to me every bit as daunting an adaptation as the Lord of the Rings trilogy must have been for Peter Jackson, except we’ve got seven books we’re looking at. And the idea of doing that at the same time Carlton and I are bringing Lost to a close is simply not viable. There are always Dark Tower conversations, but the figuring out of what this will look like as a movie has not begun. If The Dark Tower were in the right hands, I would love to see seven movies executed just right. But you have to get people to see the first one to get them to come and see the second one.”

Though I’ve seen quite a few movies inspired by his work, I’m not very familiar with Stephen King’s actual books, but from what I understand The Dark Tower is a series of seven books mixing the genres of fantasy, horror and western that tie virtually all of King’s other stories together. According to Wikipedia, the novels “describe a gunslinger’s quest toward a tower whose nature the books call both physical and metaphorical”. It is also to be noted that an ongoing series of original Dark Tower comic books is published by Marvel Comics under King’s personal supervision, but from Lindelof’s talk of “seven books” it seems they are unfortunately not part of the deal.

In any case, Lost will end in 2010 with its sixth season, so I guess we can expect a Dark Tower movie by 2012.

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Movie Of The Day: The Punisher (2004)

Blade, released in 1998, was the precursor of a movement X-Men confirmed in 2000: movies based on comic books are the next big thing. Sure, comic book movies have been continuously made for a long time, but never in such numbers and on such a high profile. The publishing company Marvel Comics can largely be credited for this, as while they’d been pretty careless with selling their movie rights in the past, they started to take more control in the mid-nineties, resulting in the first few films to come out of the trend, including the two previously mentioned. It’s been non-stop since then, with 2008 seeing at least seven films based on comic books released in the world. The Punisher is also based on a Marvel property, which had previously been brought to the screen in a fun 1989 B-movie starring Dolph Lundgren (Universal Soldier).

Frank Castle is an FBI agent undercover on an arms deal in Tampa, Florida. The deal is busted, and an unexpected participant is killed in the process: one of local mobster Howard Saint’s sons. Stricken by grief, Saint sends his men to kill Castle and his whole family in Puerto Rico, where they are having a reunion. Castle miraculously survives the massacre, if barely, and is nursed back to health by some witch doctor dude. Driven by rage, Frank Castle returns to Tampa, seeking to punish Howard Saint and his organization for the harm they have caused. He is now the Punisher.

The Punisher was the directing debut for action screenwriter extraordinaire Jonathan Hensleigh (Next), who co-wrote the flick with Michael France (Fantastic Four). It stars Thomas Jane (The Mist), John Travolta (Hairspray), Rebecca Romijn (the X-Men films), Ben Foster (30 Days Of Night), Roy Scheider (Jaws 1 & 2) in a small role, wrestler Kevin Nash (Dead Or Alive) and country singer Mark Collie (Fire Down Below) among others. Trailer and review after the jump.

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