Christian Bale in Talks to Play Steve Jobs for Director Danny Boyle; Will Delay DEEP BLUE GOOD-BY

by     Posted 9 days ago

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It appears that the first actor that was mentioned in connection with Sony’s Steve Jobs biopic may be the one that comes away with the role.  David Fincher was initially flirting with the idea of reteaming with screenwriter Aaron Sorkin on the project, but the filmmaker would reportedly only sign on if Christian Bale played the genius innovator.  Fincher’s deal with Sony never materialized and he walked away from the project, with Oscar-winning Slumdog Millionaire helmer Danny Boyle subsequently signing on to direct.  Another reteaming started to bubble as Leonardo DiCaprio considered signing on to the project, but we recently learned that he opted to depart due to the short amount of time he would have to prepare after wrapping The Revenant.

While names like Ben Affleck and Matt Damon were mentioned as possible replacements, things have come full circle as Bale is currently in negotiations to take on the role.  More after the jump.

Ron Howard’s INFERNO Release Date Pushed to October 14, 2016

by     Posted 15 days ago

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The popularity of a Dan Brown novel has nothing on Star Wars.  As Evan correctly predicted previously, Sony Pictures has opted to shift the Inferno release date from December 18, 2015—opposite Star Wars: Episode VII—back nearly a year to October 14, 2016.  Ron Howard returns to direct the third Dan Brown adaptation with Tom Hanks back in the starring role after 2006’s The Da Vinci Code and 2009’s Angels & Demons.  The initial 2015 Inferno release date was set quite a while ago, so in reality the shift probably had more to do with scheduling rather than going head-to-head with Star Wars.

Howard only recently completed post-production on his upcoming historical drama In the Heart of the Sea, and filming on Inferno won’t begin until next April after Hanks wraps his untitled Cold War thriller with Steven Spielberg.  Finishing Inferno by next Christmas would’ve been a very tight squeeze.  More after the jump, including what Inferno’s new competition looks like on its new release date.

The End Is Nigh: Sony Buys AVENGERS-Style Shared Universe ROBIN HOOD Pitch for $1 Million

by     Posted 18 days ago

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That’s it, we’ve reached peak “shared universe” stupidity.  Game over.  Thanks for playing.  Sony is poised to purchase a pitch for a Robin Hood riff called Hood for a whopping $1 million against $2 million.  Why so much for an adaptation of well-worn territory, you ask?  Heat Vision reports that the pitch involves positioning the film as a franchise starter with an Avengers-style universe revolving around Robin Hood’s band of Merry Men.  You read that correctly.  Sony is developing a rival to the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the form of a Merry Men Universe featuring Friar Tuck, Will Scarlett, and of course Little John.  More after the jump.

Leonardo DiCaprio Exits Steve Jobs Biopic; Wishlist Now Includes Ben Affleck and Matt Damon

by     Posted 22 days ago

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It appears that Leonardo DiCaprio and his The Beach director Danny Boyle won’t be reteaming after all.  It had looked like the duo might be working together again on Sony’s Steve Jobs biopic, as news broke earlier this year that DiCaprio was being eyed to star as Boyle entered the director’s chair.  The project has been a high priority for Sony since they received Aaron Sorkin’s script, and early on they entered preliminary conversations with David Fincher about taking the helm.  That prospect didn’t work out and Boyle subsequently signed on, and the hope was that this would be DiCaprio’s next project after he wraps The Revenant with director Alejandro González Iñárritu.  However, word comes today that DiCaprio has opted to bow out of the project altogether.  More after the jump.

ZOMBIELAND 2 Back from the Dead with New Writer; Ruben Fleischer Intends to Direct

by     Posted 24 days ago

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Could it be that Zombieland 2 might actually happen after all?  The 2009 comedy was a big hit with both audiences and critics, putting a smart spin on the zombie genre with an excellent ensemble and one of the best-used cameos in recent memory.  Sony Pictures was keen on making a sequel, as was some of the cast (most notably Woody Harrelson), but they were never able to come up with a script that everyone was happy with.  Last we heard—which was nearly two years ago—director Ruben Fleischer said there were no immediate plans for Zombieland 2, and Amazon even attempted a Zombieland TV series that was met with a resounding “no thank you.”

But now it appears that there’s life in the follow-up yet, as Sony has hired a new screenwriter to pen a script under the supervision of Fleischer, who intends to return as director.  More after the jump.

FARGO Showrunner Noah Hawley Scripting One of the Universal Monster Movies

by     Posted 36 days ago

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Next to True Detective, FX’s miniseries adaptation of Fargo was one of the year’s biggest surprises in the TV realm.  The prospect of anyone touching the Coen brothers masterpiece was unthinkable, but Noah Hawley—who wrote all 10 episodes—crafted a unique take on the material that caught on with critics and audiences alike.  While he’s no doubt very busy putting together the second season of the show (which will feature a new cast, story, and setting), Hawley has understandably caught the eye of Hollywood, and buried in a report on Sony optioning his novel Before the Fall is the news that Hawley is also scripting one of Universal’s upcoming monster movies.  More after the jump.

Not a Joke: I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER Remake on the Way

by     Posted 39 days ago

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Trends come and go in Hollywood, but one of the most striking in my memory is the self-aware horror movie boom of the mid to late 1990s.  This was, of course, due to the massive success of Wes Craven’s excellent Scream in 1996, and spurred teen-centric, reference-heavy films like Urban Legend, Halloween H20: 20 Years Later, and of course I Know What You Did Last Summer (also written by Scream scribe Kevin Williamson).  These weren’t good movies per se, but they had their B movie-level charms.  Now Hollywood is keen on resurrecting one such property, and they’ve settled on an I Know What You Did Last Summer remake for some reason.  Sony Pictures has already hired Oculus writer/director Mike Flanagan to write and produce the slasher redo and alongside Fast & Furious producer Neal Moritz.  More after the jump.

George Clooney to Direct Phone Hacking Scandal Movie for Sony

by     Posted 51 days ago

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After tackling World War II with this past February’s The Monuments Men, the multi-talented George Clooney has settled on his next directorial feature.  THR reports that Clooney will produce and direct an adaptation of journalist Nick Davies’ book Hack Attack (great title or greatest title?) for Sony Pictures, which chronicles the recent British phone hacking scandal that surrounded Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation empire.  In 2011, the company was caught hacking into the voicemails of everyone from celebrities to politicians to families of soldiers who perished in the Iraq War.  The unveiling of the scandal led to News of the World closing its doors after 168 years and a subsequent government investigation that lead to the arrest of the publication’s former executive editor Neil Wallis and former editor Rebekah Brooks.

More on the film, and Clooney’s upcoming slate, after the jump.

IN FEAR Director Jeremy Lovering to Helm Haunted Hotel Film THE BRINGING

by     Posted 64 days ago

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Sony Pictures’ horror film The Bringing looked like an incredibly promising project earlier this year when Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn entered negotiations to take the helm.  Unfortunately, he subsequently left the project, but now Deadline reports that the studio is forging ahead with Jeremy Lovering now in talks to direct.  The idea for the film was spurred by the strange death of a woman at the Cecil Hotel in Los Angeles who was found in the water tanks.  Video surfaced of the woman acting erratically in the hotel elevator, and the Cecil has been home to a number of suicides over the years.  The script by Brandon and Philip Murphy revolves around a man investigating a strange death at the hotel who finds himself stumbling into a nightmare.

Lovering helmed the Sherlock Season 3 opener “The Empty Hearse” as well as the 2013 horror film In Fear.  I haven’t seen the latter, but his work on Sherlock was certainly swell.  If Refn saw something in The Bringing, hopefully Lovering can turn out a successful haunted house movie.

Shane Black to Direct Remo Williams Adaptation THE DESTROYER for Sony

by     Posted 64 days ago

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It was pretty much a given that Kiss Kiss Bang Bang helmer Shane Black would have some heat coming off of directing the $1.5 billion-grossing Iron Man 3, but the guy is amassing a seriously stacked docket of upcoming projects.  The latest one to be added is an adaptation of the long-running Warren Murphy book series The Destroyer.  Sony Pictures announced today that Black will direct a feature film adaptation of the adventure series, with Fight Club scribe Jim Uhls penning the screenplay alongside James Mullaney.  The story follows Newark cop Remo Williams, who is framed, sentenced to death, executed, and then resurrected in order to serve as the enforcement arm for a top-secret division of the US government called CURE.  The Dark Knight and Man of Steel producer Charles Roven will produce.

Hit the jump for more on The Destroyer movie and Black’s current slate of upcoming projects.

Sony to Digitally Alter THE INTERVIEW to Remove Military Buttons; May also Cut Face-Melting Scene

by     Posted 72 days ago

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Last week, Sony moved Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg‘s comedy The Interview from October 10th to December 25th.  It seemed like a savvy bit of counter-programming where the R-rated comedy, which is about a TV interviewer (James Franco) and his producer (Rogen) being tasked with assassinating Kim Jong Un, would play against family films and dramas.  However, it now looks like the delay is due to technical reasons.  According to THR, Sony “is digitally altering thousands of buttons worn by characters in the film because they depict the actual hardware worn by the North Korean military to honor the country’s leader, Kim Jong Un, 31, and his late father, Kim Jong Il (showcasing military decorations would be considered blasphemous to the nuclear-armed nation).”  That’s how crazy you can be when you have nukes: You can make people spend time and money in order to hide buttons.

There’s also concern over a face-melting scene, which is a bit more understandable.  Hit the jump for more.

PIXELS Release Date Pushed to July 24, 2015

by     Posted 73 days ago

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Earlier today, Sony Pictures moved up the release date for its Brad Pitt-fronted WWII drama Fury, but now the studio’s Pixels release date is being pushed back.  Originally scheduled for May 15, 2015, director Chris Columbus’ action-adventure pic will now open on July 24, 2015.  The film stars Adam Sandler and revolves around a group of 80s arcade game champions who are called upon to help defend earth from alien invaders who have misinterpreted our classic arcade games as a declaration of war.  The cast includes Josh Gad, Kevin James, Michelle Monaghan, Brian Cox, and a mullet-sporting Peter Dinklage, and while we haven’t seen any footage just yet, it actually sounds like one of the most promising Adam Sandler movies in some time.  Hit the jump for more on the film and its new release date.

Sony Planning Female SPIDER-MAN Spinoff for 2017 Release

by     Posted 81 days ago

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Though the studio is certainly celebrating the success of Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel Studios was once again called out this weekend for its lack of a female superhero movie, and rightfully so.  The superhero genre is bigger than ever, but even in the midst of numerous $200 million plus tentpoles from various studios, we have yet to see a female-led franchise pic.  All of this despite the fact that female moviegoers make up a hefty portion of audiences (the Guardians opening weekend was 44% female—the biggest yet for a Marvel movie), and yet are massively underrepresented at the marketplace.  When studios do decide to make quality female-led features, the results speak for themselves.  Just look at the grosses of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Frozen.

And so now it looks like the time has finally come for one of the majors to move forward with a female-led superhero pic, but it’s actually coming from the least likely of sources: Sony Pictures.  The studio holds the rights to just one comic-book franchise, Spider-Man, but now it appears that they’re keen on breaking new ground with a female Spider-Man spinoff movie, which could hit theaters as soon as 2017.  Much more on this film after the jump.

Paul Feig Eyed to Direct GHOSTBUSTERS 3; May Be Total Reboot with Female-Led Cast

by     Posted 83 days ago

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The Ghostbusters 3 saga continues.  It seems like we’ve been reading about/reporting on a third Ghostbusters film or reboot for close to a decade now, with Dan Aykroyd promising every few months that a new Ghostbusters film is “really close” to happening/shooting/being released.  Some solid movement actually occurred earlier this year, as Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II director Ivan Reitman decided to step back and simply produce the next Ghostbusters film while working closely with Sony to find a new director for the project.

At that time, we heard that Sony was hoping to start production on Ghostbusters 3 in early 2015, and while 21 Jump Street and The LEGO Movie helmers Phil Lord and Chris Miller quickly emerged as favorites to direct, subsequent reports suggested they turned the project down (indeed, they seemed to imply that they had some sort of discussions with Sony about the project in our interview from June). But now there’s some forward momentum on the project, as Bridesmaids and The Heat director Paul Feig is apparently being courted as the new Ghostbusters 3 director.  However, instead of a sequel, sources indicate that Feig might actually be spearheading a new Ghostbusters reboot with a female cast.  More after the jump.

SINISTER SIX Release Date Set for November 11, 2016; THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 3 Pushed to 2018

by     Posted 93 days ago

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Two Sony superhero projects that seemed to be very much in doubt over the past few months (ever since The Amazing Spider-Man 2 failed to match expectations at the box office) are now back on the map in a major way.  Sony has just announced firm release dates for both the villain spinoff The Sinister Six and The Amazing Spider-Man 3.  It’s not all confetti though, since this means The Amazing Spider-Man 3 will be pushed one year beyond the already rumored release date shift to 2017.

All of this means that The Sinister Six release date will be November 11th, 2016 while The Amazing Spider-Man 3 has to wait all the way until May 4th, 2018.  That last date might not be such a bad thing, as it gives Sony and director Marc Webb (if he stays attached) more time to course correct a franchise that has been sinking at an alarming rate.  Hit the jump for more on The Amazing Spider-Man 3 and Sinister Six release dates.

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