Movie Talk: ‘Ghost in the Shell’ Producer Defends Scarlett Johansson Casting; Pixar Sequels Will End After 2019

     July 5, 2016

On this episode of Collider Movie Talk (July 5, 2016) Mark Ellis, Kristian Harloff, Jon Schnepp and Ashley Mova discuss the following:

  • Box office report (Brought to you by AMC theatres)
  • Pixar sequels will end in 2019
  • Opening this week (Brought to you by AMC theatres)
  • Mail Bag

finding-dory-final-posterAfter the long holiday weekend, it’s time for the weekend box office report brought to you by our friends at AMC theatres. Finding Dory dominated the Independence Day Box Office, overcoming 3 new releases to claim the No 1 spot for the third consecutive weekend and picking up $50.2 million. This brings its domestic total to $380.5 million. The follow-up to Finding Nemo is on pace to surpass Toy Story 3 and its $415 million haul as the highest-grossing Pixar film in domestic history. The Legend of Tarzan did better than projected, swinging to $45.6 million dollars over the long weekend for the No 2 spot at the box office. Though it could be looked at as a hit for Warner Bros., the Edgar Rice Burroughs’ jungle story was made for a reported $180 million, with millions more to market. Another new release, The Purge Election Year took the No 3 spot with $34.8 million dollars over the four-day weekend, on a cost of only $10 million to produce representing another summer success for Blumhouse Production. In the No 4 spot was the last new release, Disney and Steven Spielberg’s The BFG – which many are calling a flop. It opened at $22.3 million over the four-day weekend, ranking as one of the lowest openings for Spielberg in his career. And in the No 5 spot, Fox’s Independence Day: Resurgence, taking in $20.2 million.

With Finding Dory performing well at the box office, and dates set for Cars 3, Toy Story 4, and The Incredibles 2, Entertainment Weekly spoke to Pixar president Jim Morris about the studio’s development process and why certain sequels make the cut and whether or not that trend will continue in the future. Speaking about the process of making a sequel, Morris said they don’t make a sequel unless the director of the original film has an idea that they like and are willing to go forward on. On making more original movies in the future, Morris said that no other sequels are planned at the moment. So for fans hoping to get sequels to Up, Ratatouille, and WALL-E or even Inside Out will have to wait a lot longer it seems.

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Image via Paramount Pictures

Ever since Scarlett Johansson was first cast as Major in the film version of the manga Ghost in the Shell, there have been shouts of white-washing in Hollywood, with the issue made even worse when rumors surfaced stating that CGI was tested to make Johansson appear more Asian. Many fans of the source material also say that the issue is that the story is inherently Japanese. Now, for the first time, someone involved in the Ghost in the Shell production is speaking out against all of these claims. Buzzfeed spoke with producer Steven Paul about the casting of Johansson. In the interview, Paul suggests that Ghost in the Shell is not a Japanese-specific story so much as an international one, saying he doesn’t think it’s just a Japanese story but a very international story. There’s Japanese in it. There’s Chinese in it. There’s English in it. There’s Americans in it.

BUY OR SELL

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Image via Idris Elba

A number of images have been revealed from the New York set of the highly anticipated adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower, revealing first looks at Matthew McConaughey as the villain Randall Flagg and Idris Elba as Roland Deschain, aka The Gunslinger. Elba and McConaughey are joined in The Dark Tower by Abbey Lee as the female lead Tirana, and Fran Kranz as Pimli, the right hand man of Flagg. The film also features Jackie Earle Haley, Katheryn Winnick and Claudia Kiim. The Dark Tower tells the story of Roland Deschain, Mid-World’s last gunslinger, who is traveling across Mid-World’s post-apocalyptic landscape, searching for the powerful but elusive magical edifice known as The Dark Tower. The film is directed by Nikolaj Arcel and written by Akiva Goldsman and Jeff Pinkner. It is scheduled for release on February 17, 2017.


Lionsgate has unveiled the official poster for the upcoming film Hacksaw Ridge, which marks Mel Gibson’s first directorial effort since 2006’s Apocalypto. Based on a true story, the film stars Andrew Garfield as Desmond Doss, a conscientious collaborator and Army medic who refused to bear arms during World War II, but ended up saving 75 men during the bloodiest battle of the war without firing a single bullet. Lionsgate is releasing Hacksaw Ridge in the middle of Oscar season on November 4th. It is written by Robert Schenkkan, Andrew Knight, and Braveheart scribe Randall Wallace, and also stars Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Teresa Palmer, Hugo Weaving, Rachel Griffiths, and Vince Vaughn.

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Image via Sony Pictures

Sony Pictures has released the first clip from their upcoming reboot of Ghostbusters featuring the team trying out the Ghost Chipper and Proton Glove. From Bridesmaids and Spy director Paul Feig, the film stars Melissa McCarthy as Abby, Kristen Wiig as Erin, Leslie Jones as Patty, and Kate McKinnon as Holtzmann, about a team of women attempting to oust an infestation of ghosts in New York City that starts getting wildly out of hand when those ghost begin possessing human bodies. The film opens July 15th and also stars Charles Dance, Michael Kenneth Williams, and Chris Hemsworth. 

OPENING THIS WEEK (Brought to you by AMC theatres) 

The Secret Life of Pets – Max (Louis C.K.) is a spoiled terrier who enjoys a comfortable life in a New York building until his owner adopts Duke, a giant and unruly canine. During their walk outside, they encounter a group of ferocious alley cats and wind up in a truck that’s bound for the pound. Luckily, a rebellious rabbit named Snowball swoops in to save the doggy duo from captivity. In exchange, Snowball demands that Max and Duke join his gang of abandoned pets on a mission against the humans who’ve done them wrong.

Captain Fantastic – Raised in the forest and living off the grid, six children venture into the outside world for the first time when their recently widowed father (Viggo Mortensen) takes them on a road trip.

MAIL BAG

Soph Jeeves writes:

Hi everyone,

A few days ago I was thinking about the Golden Compass film and how the original ending got cut because it was viewed by some people to be controversial and too risky for a blockbuster movie. I think its a shame that the studio chose a ‘happier’ ending, hoping the film would be more successful. I think it was a wasted opportunity to create a more mature fantasy film for children.

Are there any films that you wish had ended differently? Or that you preferred the alternative ending not used in the theatrical cut?

AJ writes

Hello, name is AJ. Love your show. I watch it every week. I was wondering which movie characters do you like the most that redeemed themselves from being a villain like Darth Vader or a character who simply did his/her best not to be a hero but ended being like a hero in the end (Han Solo)?

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