It looks like an adaptation of one of crime novelist Jo Nesbø’s books is coming close to fruition. A few years ago, Working Title purchased Nesbø’s The Snowman and Summit acquired the rights to Headhunters, but neither project has materialized in the ensuing time. Last year, Warner Bros. acquired the rights to the upcoming novel Blood on Snow as a potential starring vehicle for Leonardo DiCaprio, and now Deadline reports that Safe House director Daniel Espinosa is in talks to develop to direct the adaptation. Now, “develop to direct” isn’t the same as “direct in the next few months” so we still may be a ways off from the Blood on Snow film, but this is certainly a step forward. Hit the jump for more.
We live in a box office climate dominated by sequels, reboots, and remakes. A known property is a much safer bet for a studio than an original film, and even when one original idea somehow makes it through the pipeline and proves to be a massive success (eg. Inception), it’s singled out as an anomaly rather than incentive to generate more original properties. As such, the major studios are always on the hunt for ways to reboot or extend franchises, and if a new report is to be believed, one such property destined for a kickstart just might be a new trilogy of The Matrix films. Hit the jump to read on.
One of the most popular video game franchises of the past few years is on track to potentially become a movie. Deadline reports that Warner Bros. has acquired the rights to Minecraft, an open world-style game from Swedish indie developer Mojang AB. The game was initially released to the public in 2009 as a developmental version, followed by the official full release in November 2011. It’s a creative game in which players are able to build practically anything they want out of textured cubes in a 3D environment, with multiple modes allowing the player to either fight for survival or let their imagination run wild by simply creating. Hit the jump for more on the project.
A few months ago, Joseph Gordon-Levitt signed on to produce an adaptation of Neil Gaiman‘s Sandman alongside Warner Bros.’ go-to comic-book-guy, David Goyer (Batman Begins, Man of Steel). For those unfamiliar with Gaiman’s comic, it centers on Morpheus (a.k.a. Dream), the Lord of Dreams but also expands to follow his six siblings Death, Desire, Destruction, Delirium (formerly Delight), Despair, and Destiny. It’s a wonderful comic book, and it’s not easy to translate beyond its tame first arc (“Preludes and Nocturnes”), which has Dream escaping from a prison and trying to reclaim his objects of power.
This story will probably be the basis for the film, and Deadline reports that Jack Thorne will write the screenplay based on a pitch from Goyer. Thorne wrote the script for How I Live Now (a film I didn’t particularly care for) and the adaptation of Nick Hornby‘s novel A Long Way Down. Personally, I don’t think Sandman needs to go into another medium, but hopefully Thorne, Goyer, and Gordon-Levitt (who the studio hopes will also direct and star in the picture) have found an interesting way to translate it to the big screen.
The 2013 awards race will finally come to a close on Sunday with the Academy Awards, so naturally there’s no time to waste when it comes to looking at Awards Season 2014. Paul Thomas Anderson‘s last two films, There Will Be Blood and The Master, both racked up multiple nominations, and Warner Bros. is angling for his next movie, an adaptation of Thomas Pynchon‘s detective novel Inherent Vice, to do the same. The studio has set Inherent Vice to open on December 12th. Currently, its competition will be Ridley Scott‘s biblical epic Exodus and the family movie Paddington. I’m curious to see if Warners plans to run Vice through the festival circuit before its theatrical release.
Hit the jump for more on Inherent Vice and release dates for Entourage and The Intern.
Warner Bros. has announced early 2015 release dates for a pair of upcoming films. The studio will release the comedy Get Hard on March 27, 2015, where it will square off against Neill Blomkamp’s (Elysium) sci-fi comedy Chappie and the animated spinoff The Penguins of Madagascar. Get Hard stars Will Ferrell as a wealthy investment banker who enlists the man who washes his car (Kevin Hart) to help prepare him for a maximum security prison sentence. Tropic Thunder and Men in Black 3 screenwriter Etan Cohen makes his directorial debut on the pic, which starts production this spring.
Additionally, the studio will release director Jaume Collet-Serra’s (Unknown) actioner Run All Night on February 6, 2015 directly opposite the long-delayed fantasy film Seventh Son. Run All Night stars Liam Neeson as an aging hitman who, in order to protect his wife and son, must take on his former boss in a single night. The film also stars Joel Kinnaman and Ed Harris and marks the third collaboration between Neeson and Collet-Serra, who most recently teamed up on Non-Stop.
Bradley Cooper is apparently going for the trifecta for starring in films whose titles begin with the word “American.” He’s nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for American Hustle, his next film is the real-life drama American Sniper, and now he’s attached to star in the crime thriller American Blood. THR reports that Warner Bros. has acquired the rights to the Ben Sanders novel of the same name, which revolves around a NYPD officer-turned-mob-informant who gets involved with a dangerous investigation concerning a missing woman while living in witness protection in New Mexico. Cooper is attached to star in the potentially franchise-igniting pic with Andrew Sodroski (Holland, Michigan) penning the screenplay. A director has not yet been as it’s still early days on the project; the book doesn’t even hit shelves until Fall 2015.
Hit the jump for more on Cooper’s upcoming slate.
Everything will continue to be awesome. With the incredibly impressive box office hold of The LEGO Movie, it was inevitable that Warner Bros. would be moving forward with a sequel. The studio began developing a follow-up with screenwriter Jared Stern (Mr. Popper’s Penguins) weeks before the film’s release, and now Box Office Mojo reports that Warner Bros. has slated the untitled sequel for release on May 26, 2017. It’s unclear who will be spearheading the film behind the scenes, but LEGO Movie writers/directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller previously said that they would probably produce the follow-up, so one imagines they won’t be returning as directors; they’re no doubt fielding a flood of offers for other projects at the moment.
After opening to $69 million and overwhelmingly positive reviews, The LEGO Movie’s current worldwide gross already stands at $202 million after just two weeks in release, and it’s expected to maintain its hold on the box office again this weekend. WB is also developing a Ninjago movie and a recent report suggested that it might hit theaters before a LEGO Movie sequel, but it appears that the further adventures of Emmet and Co. will instead come first.
Amazon’s Gold Box Deal of the Day is a doozy if you want to beef up your Blu-ray collection with classics. For today only, Amazon is selling Best of Warner Bros 50 Film Collection on Blu-ray for 70% off. The set is loaded with classic films from 1932 to 2010 including Casablanca, The Wizard of Oz, Singin’ in the Rain, Bullitt, Dirty Harry, Superman, Unforgiven, Goodfellas, The Shining, and The Lord of the Rings trilogy. At $179, you’re basically getting each movie for less than four dollars. For the number of must-own films in this collection, that’s a pretty great deal. The set also includes two documentaries about Warner Bros.
Click here to buy the set, and hit the jump for a full list of the titles. [Note: Collider earns a small referral fee when our readers purchase something on Amazon through one of our links. The money generated helps pay our staff and keep the site running. Thank you for reading and supporting Collider.]
It appears that filmmaker Ron Howard may soon be heading back into family friendly territory. A month after director Alejandro González Iñárritu fell off the project, Heat Vision reports that Howard is currently in talks to take the helm of Warner Bros.’ live-action The Jungle Book adaptation. The studio is in a bit of a race to get the project off the ground, as Jon Favreau is helming another live-action adaptation of the Rudyard Kipling book for Disney with an October 2015 release date already set. Warner Bros.’ picture is being produced by Steve Kloves, who wrote all but one of the Harry Potter films for the studio, and his daughter Callie Kloves wrote the screenplay for this new Jungle Book film. Should Howard sign on, he would also produce this new adaptation. Hit the jump for more on the project and Howard’s very busy slate.
Warner Bros. has staked out a July 1, 2016 release date for its big-budget adaptation of Tarzan, in 3D no less. The film has been in development for over a year and at one point was put on hold due to budget concerns, but it’s been picking up steam once again over the past few months. David Yates is onboard to direct, making this his first feature since helming the final four Harry Potter films back-to-back, and True Blood actor Alexander Skarsgard is set in the titular role as Tarzan. Margot Robbie—who shined as the female lead in The Wolf of Wall Street—will make the leap to franchise films playing Jane, and Samuel L. Jackson and Christoph Waltz are confirmed to co-star.
Currently, Independence Day 2 is also scheduled to open on that 4th of July weekend in 2016 alongside the Angry Birds movie, but either ID4 or Tarzan will likely shift to another weekend to avoid cannibalizing each other. With this new date for Tarzan, 2016 is shaping up to be a big year for Warner Bros., as the studio will also launch Batman vs. Superman in May. Read the full press release for Tarzan after the jump.
It’s become commonplace for studios to start working on sequels to potential franchise films before they’ve been released in theaters, and it appears that Warner Bros. is taking that route on the fantastic-looking The LEGO Movie, which will finally be unleashed in theaters this weekend. Per The Wrap, Jared Stern (Mr. Popper’s Penguins) is currently working on the script for a LEGO Movie sequel with another unspecified writer. Phil Lord and Chris Miller—who directed The LEGO Movie among other awesomely delightful films like 21 Jump Street and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs—also penned the script for The LEGO Movie, but they are currently deep in post-production on this summer’s 22 Jump Street. Hit the jump for more.
With an Oscar nod for Best Documentary under its belt and Matt having named it his favorite film of 2013, the last thing Joshua Oppenheimer‘s The Act of Killing needs is an endorsement from me. And yet, here it is. I watched the film on Netflix several weeks ago and, to be honest, I’m still having trouble coming to grips with it. It’s the most the surreal and disturbing look at human atrocity I’ve seen and the more I think about its subjects and overall approach, the more I’m in awe of the fact that it exists. I drown in hyperbole when thinking of words to describe it because it’s so profound that calling it a “good film” seems not like an understatement but a complete inaccuracy. The Act of Killing is not a “good film”, it’s a stunning work of humanity that makes awards, critical reception, the sentence I’m typing at this very moment, etc., seem absolutely trivial.
Speaking of trivial, in what may go down as one of the worst segues in Collider history, I’ll now attempt to jump into this week’s Top 5. Highlighted today is Jesse Eisenberg and Jeremy Irons joining Zack Snyder‘s Batman vs. Superman, Steve’s Neighbors set visit coverage, the first trailer for The Fault in Our Stars, Christopher Nolan‘s Interstellar being exempt from Paramount’s digital mandate, and the first trailer for Seth MacFarlane‘s A Million Ways to Die in the West. Keep reading for a brief recap and link to each of the above.
300: Rise of an Empire is scheduled for release on March 7. To whet fans’ appetites, Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures have planned screenings of the original 300 February 4 in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, Boston, Dallas, Washington DC, Phoenix, Toronto, and Montreal. To make it extra special, the first 13 minutes of 300: Rise of an Empire will screen in 3D IMAX prior to the screening. It’s a neat and logical promotion.
Hit the jump for the press release with all the details. Sullivan Stapleton, Eva Green, Lena Headey, Hans Matheson, Rodrigo Santoro, David Wenham, Igal Nao, Callan Mulvey, Jack O’Connell, and Andrew Tiernan star in 300: Rise of an Empire, directed by Noam Murro.
Director Guy Ritchie is looking to kick off another franchise at Warner Bros., and this is one that the studio has been trying to get off the ground for years. If you’ll remember, Warner Bros. developed a take on the King Arthur legend called Arthur & Lancelot a couple of years ago with David Dobkin (The Change-Up) attached to direct. The project went so far as to cast Kit Harington (Game of Thrones) and Joel Kinnaman (RoboCop) in the lead roles, but WB pulled the plug when the budget got two high. It looked as if things might pick up when Colin Farrell then entered talks to take on a lead role, but that casting didn’t work out and Dobkin went on to direct Robert Downey Jr. in the upcoming drama The Judge.
Now Sherlock Holmes director Guy Ritchie is looking to revive a King Arthur film at the studio, this time as part of an ambitious six-film franchise. Hit the jump to read on.