Screenwriters Alex Kurtzman and Chris Morgan to Create Crossover Universe for UNIVERSAL MONSTERS Starting with THE MUMMY

by     Posted 14 days ago

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Last year, we reported that Universal had hired Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman to create a crossover universe employing the studios famous monsters such as Frankenstein’s Monster, Dracula, The Mummy, et al.  But a few months ago, Orci and Kurtzman dissolved their long partnership, and have gone their separate ways.  However, Universal still wants their Avengers-style crossover world featuring the studio’s treasured creatures, and has now brought on Chris Morgan to team up with Kurtzman on the project.  Morgan is a favorite at the studio having written the scripts for every Fast & Furious movie since Tokyo Drift, which is good because when I go to a Fast & Furious movie, it’s because of the screenwriting.

Hit the jump for more on what Kurtzman, Morgan, and Universal have planned for the classic monsters.

Creator Chris Morgan and Director Allen Hughes Talk GANG RELATED, Developing the Idea, Making a Cinematic Show, FAST & FURIOUS 7, and More

by     Posted 61 days ago

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In the Fox action-drama Gang Related, Detective Ryan Lopez (Ramon Rodriguez) is struggling with his loyalty to the powerful Latino gang Los Angelicos, who raised him as if he were one of their own, and his cop family that makes up Los Angeles’ elite Gang Task Force.  In the war between law enforcement and gangs, Ryan’s increasing sense of loyalty to his profession will help him finally determine which side of the law he is really on.

During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, show creator/writer/executive producer Chris Morgan and pilot director Allen Hughes talked about how the idea for this show came about, wanting to push the envelope and make a cinematic show, establishing the look and tone, and the challenges in pulling of a show like this on a weekly basis.  Allen Hughes also talked about his desire to find a home, as a director, on television, and Chris Morgan talked about the tragic death of Paul Walker and trying to live up to his legacy in the rewriting of Fast & Furious 7.  Check out what they had to say after the jump.

Universal Will “Retire” Paul Walker’s Character in FAST & FURIOUS 7

by     Posted 208 days ago

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The seventh installment of the Fast & Furious franchise has been surrounded by an air of uncertainty for the past few weeks following the unfortunate passing of star Paul Walker.  Speculation has run rampant with regards to how Universal would move forward with Fast & Furious 7 after Walker’s death, given that the film was in the middle of production when the actor passed.  The studio officially pushed the James Wan-directed pic’s release date from this coming July to April 2015, and now it appears that all parties involved have settled on how to move forward with the pic: Walker’s character will be “retired” in Fast & Furious 7.  Hit the jump for more.

FAST & FURIOUS 7 Writer Might Try to Work in Scenes Shot Before Paul Walker’s Death; January Restart Date a Possibility

by     Posted 231 days ago

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Universal continues to inch forward on how to proceed on Fast & Furious 7 following the death of Paul Walker.  As we previously reported, Walker was only halfway finished with filming, and had yet to shoot some of his biggest scenes.  According to THR, screenwriter Chris Morgan is revising the script, and he might work in scenes Walker had already shot.  It’s an encouraging sign that the studio and director James Wan want to find some way to a satisfying good-bye for Walker’s character, Brian O’Conner, rather than cut him out of the film entirely.  If Morgan is about to weave in the material Walker shot before his death, then the delayed production might be able to resume by January.

Hit the jump for more.

Timur Bekmambetov to Direct HEATSEEKERS; Michael Bay Will Produce

by     Posted 1 year, 196 days ago

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Quite the action team-up is taking place for the upcoming film Heatseekers.  A couple of years ago, we reported that Michael Bay and his Platinum Dunes studio had acquired a spec script called Heatseekers for Paramount Pictures.  The story centered on aerial “pirates” and was likened to Fast & Furious and Point Break.  Now word comes that that Wanted and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter helmer Timur Bekmambetov has come aboard the action project to direct, with Bay maintaining his producer role.  Hit the jump for more details.

LEGEND OF CONAN Producer Chris Morgan Talks About Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Return as the Warrior King

by     Posted 1 year, 238 days ago

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We owe our thanks to screenwriter/producer Chris Morgan (Wanted), whose passion for bringing Conan the Barbarian back to the big screen also managed to convince Arnold Schwarzenegger to reprise the role. In the end, it was Morgan’s description of The Legend of Conan, as more of a “cultural catch-up” than a reboot, that got the 65-year-old Schwarzenegger interested in the project. The veteran action star has already appeared in both The Expendables films after leaving office and will next star in Kim Jee-woon’s actioner The Last Stand, followed by David Ayer’s drug enforcement flick, Ten; but The Legend of Conan offers something more than just a return to his former action-hero glory. Hit the jump to see what Morgan has in store for The Legend of Conan.

Arnold Schwarzenegger to Reprise Barbarian Role in THE LEGEND OF CONAN Reboot

by     Posted 1 year, 277 days ago

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Just minutes after we reported on Arnold Schwarzenegger’s new look in David Ayer’s Ten, we get word that the former Governor will return to his roots in The Legend of Conan.  The reboot comes from Universal, which has worldwide rights on the film.  The studio launched the original film in 1982 with Schwarzenegger as Robert E. Howard’s mythic barbarian.  The property hit a bit of a snag with the 2011 reboot Conan the Barbarian with Jason Momoa at Millenium Films, but Universal has high hopes for the new project.  Hit the jump for more including the expected storyline of The Legend of Conan.

GEARS OF WAR Feature Adaptation Grinds Forward

by     Posted 1 year, 293 days ago

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The last time we reported on the possible Gears of War adaptation, the picture was a mess, citing a search for a new writer and director, as well as toning down the lofty scale of the treatment and its resulting budget. New Line, which has had the project under its roof since 2007, recently put it into turnaround to focus on The Hobbit films. But with the video game franchise generating over $1 billion in sales and a fourth installment due out next year, Creative Artists Agency is reportedly enthusiastic about meeting with producers to find a new home for the feature adaptation.

Exclusive to the Microsoft 360 console, Gears of War is a military sci-fi third person shooter which centers on the soldiers of Delta Squad in their last-ditch efforts to save the human inhabitants of the planet Sera from unstoppable subterranean creatures known as the Locust Horde.  Hit the jump for more on the fate of the Gears of War movie adaptation.

Ryan Murphy Sells Two New Series; CBS Gives Script Orders on New Faith-Based Drama

by     Posted 1 year, 301 days ago

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If you’re not a fan of Ryan Murphy, avoiding him just got a little bit harder.  The ubiquitous show creator, whose current projects include GleeAmerican Horror Story and The New Normal has recently sold two new series, to Fox (a thriller) and NBC (a comedy).  Murphy will executive produce both projects, working with Dante Di Loreto who also serves as a producer on his three current series.  He will also be teaming up again with Brian Miller (Apollo 18), with whom he is working on a sci-fi feature for Sony.  Hit the jump for more details on the series in development, including the new potential CBS drama The Centurion.

Universal in Talks to Acquire Mark Millar’s WAR HEROES

by     Posted 2 years, 282 days ago

Universal is in negotiations to acquire War Heroes, based on the comic book by Mark Millar and Tony Harris. The book tells the story of a group of super soldiers who are created as part of an experimental program designed by the U.S. military to boost recruitment numbers and fight the war on terrorism. A group of the super soldiers goes rogue and forms a criminal enterprise, and one hero must rise to the occasion to prevent destruction. Heat Vision reports that Joshua Oppenheimer and Thomas Dean Donnelly, who are writing Marvel’s Doctor Strange, are in talks to handle script duties. Michael De Luca, Dana Brunetti (The Social Network) and Fast Five scribe Chris Morgan are producing. The project was originally set up at Columbia in 2008, but Universal has picked it up out of turnaround. Millar and Harris are onboard as executive producers.

Universal Acquires CRIME OF THE CENTURY for PORTAL Short Film Director Dan Trachtenberg

by     Posted 2 years, 290 days ago

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Universal has acquired a pitch entitled Crime of the Century for Fast Five scribe Chris Morgan to produce. Per Deadline, the original film “revolves around a high-octane heist with a science fiction twist.” Dan Trachtenberg, who directed the short film based on the Portal video game that had the web abuzz a few months ago. Trachtenberg will write the script alongside Daniel Kunka. Morgan is currently scripting the sixth film in the Fast and Furious franchise, with Justin Lin back at the helm after the surprisingly successful Fast Five. I thought Trachtenberg’s short film was really well made, and after seeing it figured he’d make a pretty cool sci-fi film if given the chance. It looks like he’s got his chance, and with Universal behind the pic he’s likely to have a hefty effects budget at his disposal. Hit the jump to watch his short film, in case you missed it.

Keanu Reeves Talks 47 RONIN; First Synopsis Revealed

by     Posted 3 years, 67 days ago

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Can director Carl Erik Rinsch balance a fantastic epic featuring giants and witches with one of Japan’s legendary tale of loyalty and sacrifice?  That’s the question circling 47 Ronin but star Keanu Reeves explains how the film plans to honor the Japanese people who have grown up hearing this tale while still creating a widely-accessible tentpole flick.  Says Reeves,

“Japanese kids grow up with this story told to them. They hear it from family and they learn it in school, it’s part of the culture.  It’s been made into movies many times and on television. It’s like our westerns, the story keeps being told.  It’s been reworked in some ways [for this new film] but with great care and respect.”

Hit the jump for more details on the project including a synopsis.  The film also features Japanese stars Hiroyuki Sanada, Tadanobu Asano, Kô Shibasaki, and Rinko Kikuchi.  47 Ronin is set to open in 3D on November 11, 2012.

The Onion News Network Interviews 5-Year-Old FAST FIVE Screenwriter

by     Posted 3 years, 95 days ago

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If it seems like the script for Fast Five was written by someone who didn’t have an education level higher than kindergarten, there’s a reason for that.  As the Onion News Network shows on their morning news show, Today Now!, the screenwriter behind the series is 5-year-old Chris Morgan.  After the jump watch the adorable Chris talk about his process in crafting the rich and detailed story behind a Fast and Furious movie.  And the youngster is already at work on a sixth film which may ditch the racing and focus more on heists.  Adorable!

Fast Five stars Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, and cars going boom.  It opens this Friday.

Will the FAST AND FURIOUS Franchise Ditch the Street Racing for a Series of Heist Movies?

by     Posted 3 years, 96 days ago

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The Fast and the Furious series is one of the major gaps in my male cinematic knowledge.  I am too effeminate, too pretentious.  However, I have much respect for the continued success of the franchise after the 2009 surge to a series-best $353 million worldwide box office with Fast & FuriousFast Five opens this Friday, and the smart money is on “Major Hit.”  The producers wisely tapped into the core appeal of the films and secured virtually every major player in the series — including Vin Diesel, Paul Walker,  Jordana Brewster, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Tyrese Gibson, Sung Kang — and upped the ante by casting potential action god Dwayne Johnson.

Pretend you’re a studio executive for a second.  At this point, you wouldn’t reinvent the market’s premier car movie brand to cater to someone like this silly writer, right?  And yet, Universal chairman Adam Fogelson is discussing just such a shift.

Chris Morgan — screenwriter on Tokyo Drift, Fast & Furious, and Fast Five — was previously hired to start work on a sixth film.  Deadline reports the sequel is set up to revolve around a robbery: “Universal’s intent is to transform this street racing franchise into a series of heist films.”  More after the jump.

Official Synopsis for FAST FIVE

by     Posted 3 years, 319 days ago

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For the first time, the official synopsis for Fast Five is available for our viewing pleasure.  While you may be thinking to yourself, “What’s there to know?  Buff dudes drive amazingly sweet cars in cool locations,” the truth is that this synopsis is important for a couple of reasons:

  • It features what is (to the best of my knowledge) the first “official” full confirmed cast list for the film.
  • It seems to sure up any debate as to where Fast Five would fall in the time-line with regards to its predecessors.  It clearly tells us it takes place after the last film.

Officially, Fast Five stars Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Tyrese Gibson, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.  To check out the synopsis, hit the jump.  Fast Five is currently aiming for a June 10th, 2011 release.

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