Is Iron Man 3 the most divisive superhero film ever made? There are those that look at its third act reveal (the archly evil Mandarin exposed to be nothing more than a boorish struggling English actor) as a brilliant deconstruction of the superhero genre, whilst others will maintain it pisses on fifty years of Iron Man comic lore. The ‘Marvel One shot’ All Hail The King (which can be found as an extra on the Blu-ray of Thor: The Dark World) is very much a reaction to that angered subset of fandom. Trevor Slattery (Ben Kingsley) is now a “star” in prison – with his very own doting entourage, lavish prison room and his own exclusive documentary interview. But not all is as perfect as it seems. Slattery’s interviewer (Scoot McNairy) doesn’t have the slightest interest in getting any sort of story/scoop out of his subject – no, he has a far more sinister agenda: to confront Slattery on ruining the good name of the real Mandarin. McNairy’s character though ultimately serves as sounding board for every comic fan that bemoaned Iron Man 3’s twist.
It’s a nifty bit of satire – and on the red carpet for the World Premiere of All Hail the King, I had the opportunity to talk with writer/director Drew Pearce and Ben Kingsley briefly about fan reaction and the satirical undercurrents of the short. Their answers couldn’t have been more different. For the interviews, hit the jump.
We’re still well over a year away from the second superhero team-up in Joss Whedon’s The Avengers: Age of Ultron, but that doesn’t stop us from wondering about The Avengers 3. Before we get to worrying about who will star in it and which heroes will square off against which villains, we need to know just who will be writing and directing the damn thing. If a comment from screenwriter Drew Pearce during a recent interview is to be believed, Whedon might already be set to return for the third installment, possibly as both a writer and director. Hit the jump for more.
[Update: Pearce has taken to Twitter to clarify his comments, saying "Duh, I have NO IDEA whether Joss is actually coming back for Avengers 3." So, while likely, it's still not confirmed that Whedon will be directing the third Avengers film.]
The Marvel One-Shots have continued to increase in quality, and the latest one, All Hail the King, is the best yet. Written and directed by Iron Man 3 co-writer Drew Pearce, All Hail the King is funny, clever, has some exciting twists, and is probably best viewed with a group of friends. At the very least, it’s a welcome extra on the upcoming Blu-ray for Thor: The Dark World.
I recently spoke with Pearce about the short film, the process of creating a One-Shot, the “brutal” shooting schedule, the generous support from Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige and Co-President Louis D’Esposito, working with Ben Kingsley again, and more. We also talked about the possibility of his British sitcom No Heroics reaching a wider audience, his script and enthusiasm for Runaways, if he’s ever talked with Whedon about it since Whedon did a run on the comics, and more. Hit the jump to check out the interview. Thor: The Dark World will be released on Blu-ray and DVD on February 25th. Click here to pre-order.
I was a big fan of the Marvel Comics series Runaways. Created by Brian K. Vaughan, the series focused on a group of teenagers who runaway when they discover that their parents are a group of supervillains known as “The Pride”. As the kids try to find their way, they stumble upon surprising aspects of their birthrights. It’s a great story about adolescence intertwined with Marvel Universe staples such as aliens, mutants, and magic. Over three years ago, Drew Pearce was hired to write the screenplay based on the success of his superhero parody series, No Heroics. The project seemed like it was gearing up for production, but then it went into stasis as The Avengers became the studio’s big “team” movie.
Pearce went on to co-write Iron Man 3, and now he’s written and directed the latest Marvel One-Shot, All Hail the King. During our conversation, we geeked out a bit over Runaways, and he told me how his script compared to the comic, how it could be The Godfather of the Marvel Universe (in terms of families and a crime syndicate), how he would use Joss Whedon‘s run from the comics, and more. Hit the jump to check out the interview. All Hail the King will be available on the Blu-ray for Thor: The Dark World, which hits shelves on February 25th. Click here to pre-order.
Available via Netflix Watch Instantly as of late December, last weekend I finally got the chance to check out writer/director Joe Swanberg‘s romantic comedy Drinking Buddies. I should disclaim that it’s near impossible for me to be objective when talking about Swanberg given that he’s a fellow Southern Illinois University alum and few things make me prouder than a Saluki film student enjoying success in the industry. That out of the way, I enjoyed the heck out of Drinking Buddies. Much has been made of the film’s stellar cast and I won’t try and dispute those claims at all. As someone who has never watched a minute of Fox’s New Girl, I loved Jake Johnson‘s turn in the pic and I bought he and Olivia Wilde‘s romantic chemistry hook, line, and sinker. As for Anna Kendrick and Ron Livingston? Lets just say that I love each of them in almost everything and this is no exception. All in all, Buddies is a funny, sweet, realistic teetering on the verge of understated look at the universal concept of being just friends.
Instant stream recommendations aside, this week’s Top 5 includes our Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit set visit coverage, the first look at the Marvel One-Shot All Hail the King starring Ben Kingsley, a set visit recap for Muppets Most Wanted, some villain rumors surrounding Batman vs. Superman, and Adam’s latest installment of Oscar Beat that breaks down the guild nods and what they could mean for Oscar season. Like you might expect, a brief recap and link to each of the above can be found after the jump.
Last fall, we learned that Ben Kingsley was shooting a “secret Marvel project”, and last week we reported that the upcoming Thor: The Dark World Blu-ray would contain the latest Marvel One-Shot, “All Hail the King”. Unsurprisingly, that’s the “secret Marvel project”, and now we have the first images and details regarding Kingsley reprising his role as delightful dupe Trevor Slattery. The short will be an epilogue to Iron Man 3 and see Trevor receiving the acclaim and adulation he’s always wanted albeit from within prison. However, not everyone is a fan, and writer-director Drew Pearce (who co-wrote Iron Man 3) says this short will actually provide some comfort to the comic book fans who were upset that Kingsley wasn’t actually the Mandarin.
Hit the jump for more including four images from the short. Click here to pre-order Thor: The Dark World, which will be released on February 25th.
Over three years ago, No Heroics creator Drew Pearce came on board to adapt Brian K. Vaughan’s excellent comic series, Runaways. The story centered on a group of kids who discover their parents are supervillains, and make a break for it only to discover they have powers and resources of their own (including a dinosaur). It’s the kind of strong material that could make a relatively easy move to film or television, and it looked like Marvel was aiming for the former. Production began to ramp up in 2011, but then the project started moving into stasis, and it’s remained stuck in development hell. Earlier this year, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige said the issue with Runaways was about the project being stuck between a swing-for-the-fences hit and a lower budget sleeper.
In a recent interview Pearce, who went on to co-write Iron Man 3 with director Shane Black, talked about Runaways, and explains that the problem went far beyond simply trying to slot the movie into a proper category. Hit the jump for more.
Drew Pearce’s latest screenwriting effort, Iron Man 3, was a little box office darling you may have heard of. Though Pearce co-wrote the Marvel movie with director Shane Black, it looks like Pearce alone will get the first crack at Paramount’s new Mission: Impossible film. It was recently reported that franchise star Tom Cruise is officially attached to produce and star in Mission: Impossible 5. Production on the film is is expected to start in the fall after Cruise wraps filming on Warner Bros.’ The Man From U.N.C.L.E. Plot details are being kept quiet, per THR, and the search for a director is currently underway. Christopher McQuarrie (Jack Reacher) is reportedly in talks, but recently signed on to write and direct a remake of Ice Station Zebra.
While Marvel and Disney have been trying to keep the buzz on Iron Man 3 on a low hum, that’s all about to change. With the film’s release date fast approaching (May 3), the studios have started unveiling the merchandise and they also recently held a long lead press day where they showed selected members of the press about 15 minutes of the movie. In addition, right after watching the awesome-looking footage, we got to interview Robert Downey Jr. as well as Iron Man 3 director Shane Black and Kevin Feige (President of Production at Marvel Studios).
During the interview with Black and Feige, the two talked about creating the film’s iteration of The Mandarin, how the film’s plot came together, the connective tissue between The Avengers and Iron Man 3, how Downey, Black and Drew Pearce worked together on the dialogue on set, the way Iron Patriot plays a role in the sequel, the stunt-heavy filming of the Air Force One attack sequence, and so much more. If you’re looking forward to Iron Man 3, I promise you’ll love this interview. Hit the jump to either read or listen to what they had to say.
Jason Segel and Drew Pearce have sold a high profile pitch to Fox. The duo will write and executive produce a narrative feature film adaptation of the documentary The Other F Word. The doc, which features interviews with rock artists like Flea, Mark Hoppus, and Tim McIlrath, focuses on aging rock stars trying to balance their punk rock views with the responsibilities of fatherhood. Segel and Pearce—the scribe behind Iron Man 3, Sherlock Holmes 3, and the upcoming Godzilla reboot—will write the script with Segel set to star in the film.
Segel is no stranger to screenwriting as he previously penned the fantastic Forgetting Sarah Marshall and co-wrote The Muppets and The Five-Year Engagement. The actor seems a tad young to take on a father role here, but I’m inclined to believe that he and Pearce have come up with an interesting take on the premise and will be able to craft a script filled with humor and heart. Hit the jump to watch the trailer for the documentary.
One of the great surprises at Comic-Con this summer was an unannounced look at director Gareth Edwards’ reboot of Godzilla. Legendary unveiled a teaser reel of footage that Edwards put together to pitch his vision for the film, and the result was a chilling, grounded, destruction-filled world in which the monstrous beast had wreaked havoc on everything in sight. The overwhelmingly positive response put the project on the fast track, and just a few weeks ago a May 2014 release date was announced.
Though the project has three credited screenwriters—David Callaham (The Expendables films), David S. Goyer (Batman Begins) and Max Borenstein (The Seventh Son)—word now comes that Legendary has brought in Iron Man 3 scribe Drew Pearce for yet another rewrite. Hit the jump for more.
Sony Pictures has acquired a spec script for an action-comedy called Secretaries Day, and Will Gluck is set to direct and produce. Deadline reports that Sony acquired the spec from Drew Pearce, a scribe who’s becoming more prolific by the day. The writer has been busy working on Iron Man 3 for director Shane Black and was recently tapped to pen Sherlock Holmes 3—which is all but guaranteed to go into production if tracking for A Game of Shadows holds up. The report has no plot details regarding Secretaries Day other than to say it’s an action-comedy, though I’m assuming it involves secretaries in some action-y way (fingers crosses for ninja secretaries). I was a huge fan of Gluck’s past two movies (Friends with Benefits and Easy A) so I’m interested to see what he does with the action-comedy genre.
Aside from Iron Man 3 and Sherlock Holmes 3, Pearce also did some work on Guillermo del Toro’s directorial project Pacific Rim (which is now finally filming), and wrote an adaptation of Marvel’s Runaways and DC’s The Mighty. The scribe first came to prominence with his ITV2 superhero sitcom No Heroics.
It’s not much of a surprise that regardless of the success of Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Warner Bros. is ordering a script for Sherlock Holmes 3. Getting a sequel script into development has become standard practice for major franchises so if the upcoming film is a success, the studio can hit the ground running with the next one. According to Deadline, Iron Man 3 screenwriter Drew Pearce will handle the screenplay for the next adventure of Sherlock Holmes and his boy Watson. Unsurprisingly, there are no details about Sherlock Holmes 3. I assume it will involve a mystery, crazy deductive-reasoning skills, and lots of speed-ramping.
Pearce has been on a hot streak lately. He was the co-writer of British superhero comedy series No Heroics and then was hired as a go-to guy for superhero movies including Iron Man 3, Runaways, and The Mighty plus he also did some work for the script for Guillermo del Toro’s upcoming monster movie, Pacific Rim. This latest gig serves as a reminder that I really need to get around to seeing No Heroics.
Paramount acquired the feature rights to the DC comic The Mighty earlier this summer. Variety reports the studio has hired Drew Pearce to adapt the screenplay. The comic, written by Peter J. Tomasi and Keith Champagne, centers on America’s first and only superhero, Alpha One: “a cop whose life was saved by Alpha One as a child has uncovered his hero’s dark plan that will put them on a collision course of an ordinary man versus a super-man.” BenderSpink partners Chris Bender and JC Spink (Arthur) will produce with Jake Weiner (Leap Year).
Pearce is also working on two Marvel properties at the moment in Iron Man 3 and Runaways. This all can be traced back to No Heroics, the superhero sitcom he created for ITV2. Read the synopsis for The Mighty issue #1 after the break.
Ever since Shane Black (Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang) signed on to direct Iron Man 3 last February, there’s been some confusion on whether or not he would write the script. It seemed like a no-brainer that Black, who broke into Hollywood with his screenplays for films such as Lethal Weapon and The Last Boy Scout, would also get to handle the script for IM3. But then we learned that Marvel had hired Drew Pearce (the British TV series No Heroics, the upcoming Marvel movie Runaways) to handle the screenplay, but would also “work closely with Black”. Now CinemaBlend is reporting that Black is co-writing the script with Pearce. CinemaBlend also reports that Pearce was brought in to keep the script family-friendly since Black is known for his R-rated work. I find that slightly difficult to believe since I’m pretty sure Black is talented enough to write a PG-13 script.
The real question in all of this isn’t about how the credits will shake out, but Black’s level of involvement. If he’s heavily involved with the screenplay, that’s terrific, but I seriously doubt he would be shut out of the process. Iron Man 3, starring Robert Downey Jr., is set to open May 3, 2013.