Okay, I'm not really doing a big news essay today. Nothing much exciting to report. I'll do a big review of Borat! on Wednesday to make up for today's slim pickings. Now, that isn't to say today's stuff ain't nifty. In fact, if you're into comic-book movies (Hark! The sound of multiple users exiting the browser...) there are goodies galore! I'm going to start with a big Spider-Man 3 leak and then move on to some other news bits.
Now, what's the Spidey story, you demand to know? Well, I can't supply a link cuz this one's been pulled off the net really quickly. It seems that photos leaked out today which were concept art for the Spidey 3 video-game which will be tied into the movie. Now, this time we get a clear, detailed look at Venom (as opposed to the vague one a week or so back), but we also get a great Sandman photo and a groovy lil' photo of Harry Osborn in his Green Goblin gear. Plus, since they are for the game, this would mean they are based of the finalized movie designs, so these are pretty dead on to what we'll be seeing in May! I know, I know! Shut up already and make the photos! Okay, here they are:
First up, to your glorious left is the new Sandman pic. It's a little blurry here, so I recommend clicking on it for a clearer, larger display.
Getting to the point, however, it's consistent with the previously released Sandman photos. I gotta say that the resemblance between Thomas Haden Church & his digital counterpart to the classic comic character is staggering. This is a role Church was born to play and I eagerly await a deeper take on the often one-note character. I'm really lovin' the sand-hammer pictured here and hope there's lots of variety to Sandman's shape-shifting abilities in the film. Hopefully they'll leave the Hydroman/Sandman beast out though. That was just lame.
Next here, we have the Harry Osborn in Green Goblin gear. I'm pretty confident that unlike the comics, Harry won't actually become the Green Goblin. It looks like he'll just flirt with the gear and powers a bit without fully taking over the mantle.
This one I'm not so crazy about. It looks like a snowboarding paintballer (Or would that be a paintballing snowboarder...). The mask is a cheap paintball mask, and the armor is a little too Mortal Kombat-like (What's with the short sword on his back?). I know that there was huge fan outcry over the Goblin costume in the first film, but is this the answer? He looks disturbingly like a modernized version of the cheesy 70's villain Rocket Racer! Sadly, there's no chance of this one improving either, as it appeared exactly like this in the first trailer. I dunno, was it really necessary to turn the glider from the first film into a snowboard? It's like their trying to make him "cool" for the teenage crowd or something... Ugh.
But who cares, right? None of you do! You want the big enchilada! The hot tamale! The... Well, I can't think of any more Mexican food metaphors... The long and short is, you want Venom! Well, here he is! Bask in his effervescence!
Now, I had a feeling Venom would come out all right. Once I saw that sculpt I was confident that he'd come out at least as good as Sandman. But I never realized he would look as good as this! I mean, damn!
Now to most of you this is slobbering geek-talk. I'm not going to disagree. But if you were a young male in the early-mid 90's, this is huge! This is an icon made flesh. I know this photo is going to make my friend Gabe giggle like a schoolgirl on the first day of horse camp!
This, my friends, is what will unite us all when Spider-Man 3 hits theatres in May. I just have to say thank you Sam Raimi! You can't make a Green Goblin to save your life, but you've created the best Venom possible! Now, let's see him tear sh*t up!!! ...Starting with the Snowboarding bandit!
Now, if you think I've expelled all my Spidey enthusiasm here, you're sadly mistaken: on Thursday Sony will be releasing the brand new Spider-Man 3 trailer online and I'll have a full write-up on it, with a link and an assortment of pointless speculation and gushing praise.
And if you don't care about Spider-Man 3, just wait till more stuff is released regarding the next Batman film The Dark Knight! Oh, there will be plenty on that one too! MUHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHHAHAHAAAAAAAAAA!
Okay, moving on to another comic-book franchise with big news today, it's The Incredible Hulk! It was officially announced that the next chapter in the series no-one wanted to see continue will be released on June 27th, 2008.
Hands up, everyone who loved that mopey 2003 Ang Lee directed Hulk movie? The one with the overwrought drama and grating performance by Nick Nolte? The one that drained any potential fun out of the character? Huh, nobody, huh? Well, Marvel is aiming to fix that!
They've canned everyone involved with the 2003 film and are calling Incredible a "restart". It'll have a new cast (None announced thus far) and it'll be more action-oriented with bigger villains (The Abomination, apparently - pictured), and less of the dense drama to drag it down!
Now, how does one make sure the same thing doesn't happen again? Well, for starters, you hire the director of The Transporter 2! That's right ya'll, technically proficient hack, Louis Leterrier (Transporter 1 et 2, Unleashed) is on Hulk-duty and he wants to smash stuff up! Leterrier has said he wants to get away from the tragedy of the character and just go nuts.
While I was no fan of the dull 2003 film, this one seems like it may suck for the exact opposite reason! So far, all I've heard about is how much "HULK SMASH!" I'm going to be seeing. Now, I'm all for a little more action (God, you know it's sad when half the action of the first Hulk was in that stupid mutant dog fight!), but not at the expense of character. Raimi and Nolan have had no problem balancing the action and drama with the Spider-Man and Batman franchises! The X-Men films too! Is it too much to hope for a balanced Hulk film?
Yeah, Abomination may be cool, I just don't want to see a pointless CG monster battle. Van Helsing cured me of that need for a lifetime! So, let's pray for a little more subtlety than what was on display in The Transporter! We don't need another Elektra, Mr. Leterrier!
_____________________________________________________________________________________ Finally, a small news item that puts to rest any chance of Ben Affleck reprising his Daredevil role for a sequel.
According to IGN movies (read the story at Rotten Tomatoes: http://www.rottentomatoes.com/news/comments/?entryid=377595) Affleck said "By playing a superhero in Daredevil, I have inoculated myself from ever playing another superhero. ... Wearing a costume was a source of humiliation for me and something I wouldn't want to do again soon."
A source of humiliation? Come on Ben! What about Reindeer Games? Paycheck? Armageddon? Pearl Harbor? (I'm not gonna go the Gigli/Surviving Christmas route since I haven't seen them.) Frankly, Daredevil was your best movie of the last few years, along with the underrated Jersey Girl. I can understand not wanting to do a sequel, but to call it a source of humiliation? Pretty harsh, man, pretty harsh!
For those of you who want to take me to task for saying Daredevil was good, go rent the director's cut. It far exceeds the theatrical cut, restoring an entire sub-plot and injecting a little more drama and character development. I was kinda bummed by this news, as I thought Affleck did a really good job at portraying Matt Murdock. Ah well, c'est la vie.
That's it for me today! I'll be back on Wednesday with a Borat! bonanza!
In the meantime, I'm gonna get started on my letter campaign for a director's cut of the 1990 masterpiece, Captain America, starring Matt Salinger and Ronny Cox! You'll all support me, right? Guys?
EDIT: Wow, this was my longest post yet! Huh, talk about spinning gold from hay, huh?
EDIT 2: I don't know why, but Blogger.com has erased my Kung Fu: The Movie piece. It's been wiped from my records. Sorry to anyone who hadn't read it. Leave a comment if you missed it and want to know more and maybe I'll replace the lost info. Damn you Blogger, damn you to hell!