Links of the Week

The latest /Filmcast and /Filmcast: After Dark (I actually sort of appear in the After Dark, so check it out).

/Film‘s David Chen interviews Let The Right One In director Tomas Alfredson here.

Actor Seth Green (Sex Drive) will direct an adaptation of the comic book he co-created here.

Javier Bardem (Vicky Cristina Barcelona) will star in Biutiful from director Alejandro González Iñárritu (Babel) here.

McG (We Are Marshall) will direct the adaptation of the novel Dead Spy Running here.

Crispin Glover (Epic Movie), Christopher Lee (The Golden Compass) and Eleanor Tomlinson (Angus, Thongs And Perfect Snogging) have all joined the cast of the new Alice In Wonderland movie from director Tim Burton (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street) and Burton regular composer Danny Elfman has confirmed he’s doing the music here and here.

Chris Columbus (Rent) is in talks to direct Ripley’s Believe It Or Not here.

Ian McDiarmid, the guy who plays Palpatine in the Star Wars saga, is amazing here.

Ben Stiller goes dramatic?

Funnyman Ben Stiller (Tropic Thunder) is apparently in consideration to direct The Trial Of The Chicago 7, a court movie based on real events which Steven Spielberg (the Indiana Jones films) has been dragging along for a couple of years. Paul Greengrass, director of the last two Bourne films, was attached to the pic in August.

The script was written by Aaron Sorkin (Charlie Wilson’s War) and a few actors are already attached, namely Sacha Baron Cohen (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street), Will Smith (Hancock) and Philip Seymour Hoffman (Charlie Wilson’s War).

As far as I know, Stiller has never strayed, even slightly, from comedy, so if this confirms, will he pull it off? I find that comic actors are often of excellent dramatic performances, but what about comedy directors? On a side note, the events were also recently the subject of an animated documentary titled Chicago 10.

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New Trailer: Madagascar – Escape 2 Africa

The third and presumably final trailer for Madagascar 2 has popped up and it gives a lot more insight than the previous two. I wasn’t a big fan of the first Madagascar (I actually thought it sucked), but this looks potentially better, and though it’ll undoubtedly be incredibly stupid, there may be a few decent laughs.

Co-directed by original helmers Eric Darnell and Tom McGrath and written by Etan Cohen (Tropic Thunder), the sequel, whose title can be read as Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa or Madagascar 2: Escape Africa, has the four New York Zoo animals from the first film attempting to return to their home on a plane piloted by penguins only to crash in continental Africa.

In typical DreamWorks Animation fashion, the film features the voice talents of many notable people including Ben Stiller (Tropic Thunder), Chris Rock (I Think I Love My Wife), Jada Pinkett Smith (The Women), David Schwimmer (Friends), Sacha Baron Cohen (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street), Cedric The Entertainer (Street Kings), Bernie Mac (Transformers), Will.i.am (the band Black Eyed Peas) and Andy Richter (Semi-Pro), and will premiere on November 6th in Hungary and Russia (???). Will you go see it?

Disney announcements galore

The Walt Disney Company had a big presentation a couple of days ago where they announced a bunch of new movies, including three starring Johnny Depp (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street). These are a new adaptation of The Lone Ranger written by Ted Elliott & Terry Rossio (National Treasure: Book Of Secrets) where Depp will play Tonto and George Clooney (Burn After Reading) might play the titular character, a new part live-action/part CGI adaptation of Alice In Wonderland written by Linda Woolverton (Mulan) and directed by frequent collaborator Tim Burton (Sweeney Todd…) so yeah obviously, and as expected, a fourth Pirates Of The Caribbean film.

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It was also announced that Cars 2 would be released in 2011 instead of 2012 and that the story will have Mater joining Lightning McQueen on a world tour. Additionally several short films entitled Car-toons will be set between the two films and will air on the Disney Channel and perhaps before some theatrical films. Thus, the Disney/Pixar film originally planned for 2011, Newt, will instead be released in 2012.

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Maggie Grace takes role from Mischa Barton

Maggie Grace (The Jane Austen Book Club) has replaced Mischa Barton (FOX’s The O.C.) in the lead of Malice In Wonderland, a British re-telling of Lewis Carroll’s famous book. Since both girls are very pretty, this probably means that the American Maggie is more convincing in an English accent than the British Mischa… Anyway, the movie will probably be the better for it, since even though Maggie Grace hasn’t really proven herself as an actress yet, she’s miles ahead of the incredibly wooden Mischa Barton, who couldn’t emote if her life depended on it.

Described as an action movie, Malice In Wonderland co-stars  Nathaniel Parker (St. Trinian’s, amovie ironically starring Mischa Barton). It is directed by Simon Fellows and written by Jayson Rothwell (who already worked together on Second In Command). The film is now currently shooting.

In the meantime, you can catch (sooner or later, depending of where you live) Maggie Grace is the amazingly badass actioner Taken, co-starring Liam Neeson (Seraphim Falls) kicking ass and Famke Janssen (the X-Men films) moping around. I caught the flick at the beginning of the year, and if you hadn’t guessed, I strongly recommend it. Taken is directed by Pierre Morel (District B13) and written by the Luc Besson/Robert Mark Kamen team (the Transporter films).

Meanwhile Mischa Barton, whose career is fading faster than you can say “hey!”, is resorting to staged paparazzi outings to keep her name in the papers (true story) and is seeing all her post-O.C. efforts go straight-to-DVD in the States. In fact, her latest turd, Virgin Territory, was released last week. The film co-stars Hayden Christensen (Jumper) and Tim Roth (The Incredible Hulk) and was written and directed by David Leland (The Land Girls). Also, don’t buy it (more about that here).

Other Alice In Wonderland movies to be released in the next few years include the adaptation of American McGee’s Alice video game (which has been gestating forever it seems) and a new Disney film by Tim Burton (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street). Both of these movies will give a darker spin to the tale.

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Schwarzenegger’s face won’t appear in new Terminator movie. Voice still a possibility.

Everyone pretty much agrees that Terminator simply isn’t Terminator without Arnold Schwarzenegger. The current Governor of California has expressed interest and enthusiasm over the franchise’s fourth installment, and has even been open to the possibility of making a small appearance in the film. Turns out he won’t, but his voice might. Terminator producer Moritz Borman told Wired.com:

“I’m not going to answer the question about what we’re trying, or what we want, or what we’re toying with. It’s really up to what fits in the film or not. Maybe his voice, or maybe not.  It’s really not settled.”

In other words, expect robots to say “I’ll be back” throughout the movie. Still, it’s better than nothing. Terminator Salvation has been filming in New Mexico under the direction of McG (the Charlie’s Angels movies) and is due for release on May 22nd, 2009 in the USA, South Korea and Iceland. In an effort to reinvigorate the formula, it will be the first Terminator film set entirely in the future and will initiate a story arc that will continue in two further installments.

The film stars Christian Bale (The Dark Knight), Anton Yelchin (J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek), Sam Worthington (Rogue), Moon Bloodgood (Pathfinder), rapper Common (Wanted), Bryce Dallas Howard (Spider-Man 3) and Helena Bonham Carter (Sweeney Todd) and was written by John D. Brancato & Michael Ferris (Terminator 3) with David C. Wilson (Supernova) and polished by Paul Haggis (Casino Royale), Jonathan Nolan (The Dark Knight) and Shawn Ryan (FX’s The Shield). McG has cited 2006 apocalyptic masterpiece Children Of Men and the novel The Road as influences

Hey, here’s an idea! Why not get Robert Patrick to reprise his T-1000 character? Not in this movie, but in one of the next ones. They could show Skynet creating him or something, that’d be pretty neat wouldn’t it?

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