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Hugh Jackman's The Wolverine teases 'epic battle that will leave him forever changed'

19 August 2012 7:24 AM, PDT

If you're wondering what we can we expect from The Wolverine, star Hugh Jackman has already explained that it's a standalone, character-driven piece that won't be overloaded with mutants.

Adding to that comes a tantalising - albeit brief - new synopsis, revealed via the film's freshly-created Facebook page.

Twentieth Century Fox's plot description for Jackman's second solo X-Men spin-off says: "Based on the celebrated comic book arc, The Wolverine finds Logan, the eternal warrior and outsider, in Japan.

"There, samurai steel will clash with adamantium claw as Logan confronts a mysterious figure from his past in an epic battle that will leave him forever changed."

Casting information on the Facebook page had listed Svetlana Khodchenkova, who was rumoured to be replacing Jessica Biel in the role of Viper.

But her name appears to have been removed, even though the Russian actress has been clearly visible in some of the »

- David Bentley

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Marvel eyes Super and Slither director James Gunn for Guardians of the Galaxy

18 August 2012 5:29 PM, PDT

Marvel Studios has set its sights on James Gunn to direct its intergalactic comic book adventure Guardians of the Galaxy.

Gunn is in talks to helm the superhero film and is the studio's top choice, says The Hollywood Reporter.

Marvel is said to want Gunn (pictured) because of "his ability to mix comedy elements with action and horror, a quality he shares with Avengers director Joss Whedon."

His credits including writing and directing crimefighting satire Super and writing and acting in superhero team comedy The Specials.

Also in the running are Peyton Reed and directing duo Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden. Reed had once been set to direct Fox's Fantastic Four before Tim Story came on board.

A brief plot description for Guardians of the Galaxy described it as being "about a Us pilot who ends up in space in the middle of a universal conflict and goes on the »

- David Bentley

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Exclusive: Colin Cunningham talks Falling Skies season three, says Ridley Scott's Alien and Nolan's Dark Knight films elevated genre

18 August 2012 11:48 AM, PDT

Commonly known as the Chicago Comic-Con, Wizard World Chicago has just enjoyed its 30th gathering celebrating the American Mid-West's love for all things geek.

Among the guests was film and television veteran Colin Cunningham. While he may not be a household name, Colin has credits in works that sci-fi/fantasy fans will consider mandatory viewing, such as The X-Files, The Outer Limits, Dark Angel, Smallville, The 4400, Andromeda, The Crow: Stairway to Heaven and Arnie-starring The 6th Day, just to name a few.

Best recognised as Major Davis in Stargate Sg-1, Cunningham is re-establishing himself with his latest outing as the bad guy on TNT's hit series Falling Skies, as part of a cast also including Noah Wyle, Moon Bloodgood, Will Patton, Drew Roy and Connor Jessup. Not to mention writing, directing and starring in his award-winning short film, Centigrade, which brought home hardware from multiple award shows.

Though time was tight, »

- Michael Pellegrini

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Jeremy Renner on Bourne Legacy role and where new film fits in franchise, reveals fight training and script secrecy

17 August 2012 11:46 AM, PDT

When Matt Damon and director Paul Greengrass decided to step down from the successful Bourne series, the question on everyone's lips was: Is this the end of Hollywood's coolest spy franchise?

The espionage films began a decade ago with Bourne being pulled unconscious from the sea in The Bourne Identity.

Over the course of two more films, The Bourne Supremacy in 2004 and The Bourne Ultimatum in 2007, audiences followed Bourne's journey as he discovered his own identity and the CIA mounted an increasingly desperate manhunt for their super-spy.

The trilogy earned almost $1 billion at the global box office with $443 million alone hauled from the last chapter but, while there was a thirst for more, the filmmakers faced a conundrum if they wanted the story to move forward.

Bourne had gone public about the Us government's intelligence programmes before disappearing off the radar at the end of the last film, so there »

- David Bentley

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Avengers 2 release date announced, Guardians of the Galaxy plot summary surfaces

17 August 2012 11:21 AM, PDT

The good news tonight is that Avengers 2 has a release date set. And the bad news is that you'll have to wait nearly three years.

Marvel's owner Disney staked a claim on the calendar that was very much in line with previous rumours.

A statement said: "Joss Whedon returns to write and direct the untitled Marvel's Avengers sequel, set for release on May 1, 2015."

In the meantime, Marvel will release Iron Man 3 on May 3, 2013, Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: The Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, Guardians of the Galaxy on August 1, 2014 and is also planning an Ant-Man film, which doesn't yet have a date attached.

A brief description of the story of Guardians of the Galaxy has emerged via It's On The Grid which said the film was "about a Us pilot who ends up in space in the middle of a universal conflict and goes on the »

- David Bentley

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Joseph Gordon-Levitt addresses Dark Knight Rises sequel talk, tie-in novel explains what happened to the Joker

17 August 2012 7:03 AM, PDT

Christopher Nolan has made it clear that he is finished with the Dark Knight and has no plans for any further films - including Warner Bros' Justice League movie whose line-up is set to include the caped crusader.

He's aware, though, that there are bound to be more Batman movies in the future and says the character has "thrived on reinterpretation."

The events of Nolan's epic finale The Dark Knight Rises have led to much speculation on what might come next - and whether we could see a sequel. Such is the acclaim and impact of the trilogy that many fans are clinging to possibilities, not wanting it to be all over.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt, whose role as cop John Blake was pivotal in The Dark Knight Rises, told The Hollywood Reporter he has "no idea" on the status of the franchise but seemed open to possibilities, saying: "I always choose scripts the same way. »

- David Bentley

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Ultimate Spider-Man climbs to record ratings as Marvel Universe launched on TV

17 August 2012 4:49 AM, PDT

New animated series Marvel's Ultimate Spider-Man has climbed to record ratings on Disney Xd UK.

The show launched in the UK on May 31, 2012, and became the top-rated animated title on the channel, reaching an audience of 1.2 million including 683,000 children aged 4 to 15 and 265,000 boys aged 8 to12 in its first six weeks on air.

The premiere episode of Ultimate Spider-Man was the best performing show in its timeslot with boys aged 8 to 12 on any kids TV channel in the UK, including those available in twice as many homes.

Over the first six weeks, the series also boosted year-on-year Disney Xd ratings for its timeslot by 77 per cent.

"The success of Ultimate Spider-Man demonstrates the demand for Marvel content from a new generation," said Boel Ferguson, general manager of Disney Channels UK & Ireland.

"Following the incredible success of Marvel's Avengers Assemble in theatres across the UK we wanted to give our viewers a »

- David Bentley

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Marvel Avengers Assemble Blu-ray and DVD breaking pre-order records

17 August 2012 2:20 AM, PDT

Superhero blockbuster Marvel Avengers Assemble is heading to Blu-ray and DVD in the UK on September 17 - with pre-orders already breaking records.

On top of box office takings that exceeded $1 billion globally after just 19 days - making it the third biggest movie of all time - Marvel Avengers Assemble is already becoming a must-own Blu-ray and DVD.

Disney/Marvel today announced that the comic book blockbuster has already racked up enough sales in three days of pre-orders to put it on track to be the second biggest week one in advance sales ever in the UK.

Exclusive to the Blu-ray edition is the all-new short film Marvel One Shot: Item 47. New York City is in ruins following the epic climax to Marvel's Avengers Assemble and some alien technology has been left behind. S.H.I.E.L.D. recovered all but one - a Chitauri weapon, aka Item 47. Fans will only be able to »

- David Bentley

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Comic Book Bites: Vin Diesel wants Vision role in Avengers 2; Robert Downey Jr injury hits Iron Man 3

16 August 2012 5:20 PM, PDT

Vin Diesel has sparked rumours he will play the Vision in the Avengers sequel, after he posted images of the character on his Facebook page.

In what seems more likely to be a campaign to appear in Joss Whedon's follow-up, the actor added several Vision images (one is featured below) - but later removed a picture showing just his eyes that was captioned 'true Vision.'

Vision joined the Avengers comic book roster in 1968 and is an android with human brain patterns. He can fire energy from his eyes and manipulate his density to achieve a diamond-hard strength and invulnerability or a ghostly intangibility that also allows flight.

There had been rumours that Clark Gregg's Agent Coulson from the Avengers movie would become the Vision. Gossip said secret scenes - supposedly filmed at the same time as Avengers - showed the consciousness of the dead S.H.I. »

- David Bentley

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Comic Book Bites: Kick-Ass 2 has release date and new cast; Joe Carnahan reveals Daredevil vision and says 'time simply ran out'

16 August 2012 3:57 AM, PDT

With director Jeff Wadlow's Kick-Ass 2 set to start filming next month, a release date of June 28, 2013, has now been announced.

Joining returning actors Aaron Johnson (Kick-Ass), Chloe Moretz (Hit-Girl), Christopher Mintz-Plasse (villain Red Mist) and Nicolas Cage (Big Daddy) will be several newcomers.

Deadline reports that Morris Chestnut (V, American Horror Story) is set to play Hit-Girl's guardian Marcus Williams, Robert Emms (War Horse, Mirror Mirror) will play Insect Man, Donald Faison (Scrubs, Skyline) has been cast as Doctor Gravity and John Leguizamo (Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge) will portray Red Mist's bodyguard Javier.

John Romita Jr, artist on the Kick-Ass comic and Hit-Girl spin-off title, recently told us the film adaptation is to shoot in September..

And there's been more news on Twentieth Century Fox's seemingly doomed reboot of Daredevil, which director Joe Carnahan recently tweeted "went up in smoke."

Carnahan took to Twitter once again to clarify »

- David Bentley

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James Cameron's Avatar travels to next dimension for Blu-ray 3D edition

14 August 2012 5:12 PM, PDT

James Cameron's otherworldly blockbuster Avatar is going to the next dimension with the announcement today of a 3D version hitting stores later this year.

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment will release Avatar Blu-ray 3D Collector's Edition in the UK on October 15.

Cameron said: "3D television is the future of home entertainment. I'm a huge proponent of the technology and very pleased that Avatar can be viewed in the living room the way it is meant to be seen."

Producer Jon Landau said: "As the number of homes with 3D televisions continues to grow, we thought it was important to bring the biggest 3D film ever right into your living room.

"This is the only way fans should experience the world of Pandora and this release offers the highest picture quality possible."

Previously only available to consumers through an exclusive deal with Panasonic, the two-disc Avatar 3D Blu-ray Collector's Edition »

- David Bentley

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Days of Future Past inspires launch of All-New X-Men comic as well as First Class film sequel

14 August 2012 5:09 PM, PDT

It was recently confirmed that classic comic book story Days of Future Past will be the basis for the sequel to X-Men: First Class - but it doesn't end there.

The time-spanning tale, originally published in 1981, has also sparked a new comic book series called All-New X-Men, by Brian Michael Bendis and Stuart Immonen. The cover for the first issue, due out in November, has now been revealed via Newsarama and is featured above.

As you can see, it shows Marvel's 'original five' line-up (as per the comics, not the movie continuity) of Angel, Marvel Girl (Jean Grey's early codename), Cyclops, Iceman and a pre-furry Beast amid rubble and not looking too pleased about what they can see.

Bendis had earlier explained the thinking behind the project to Newsarama, saying: "I'm a big fan of Days of Future Past. I think it's one of the greatest imagination-inspiring storylines - the »

- David Bentley

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Desires defy boundaries as Iran's youth culture fights free in Circumstance

14 August 2012 5:06 PM, PDT

Winner of the audience award at the Sundance Film Festival, Maryam Keshavarz's directorial debut Circumstance is to be released in the UK by Peccadillo Pictures on August 24.

Rated 15, the 107-minute drama follows a wealthy Iranian family's struggles to contain a teenager's growing sexual rebellion and her brother's dangerous obsession.

Sarah Kazemy, Nikohl Boosheri and Reza Rixo Safai star in the production, also penned by Keshavarz (right).

The UK poster and a selection of stills are included here, along with the official description.

Official description

Set in contemporary Iran in the unseen world of Iranian youth culture, filled with underground parties, sex, drugs and defiance, Circumstance is the story of two vivacious young girls - Atafeh and Shireen - discovering their burgeoning sexuality, struggling with their desires and the boundaries placed upon them by the world they were born into.

Winner of the Sundance Audience Award, Circumstance is a thrilling »

- David Bentley

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Comic Book Bites: Daredevil reboot 'goes up in smoke'; Dandy faces closure over sales slump

14 August 2012 7:41 AM, PDT

Blind crimefighter Daredevil looks set to be reclaimed by Marvel Studios following reports that Fox has dropped ideas for a new film before the rights expire.

Twentieth Century Fox must get its planned reboot of Daredevil into production by October 10, and had been in talks with director Joe Carnahan (The Grey, The A-Team remake).

But Carnahan today tweeted: "Think my idea for a certain retro, red-suited, Serpico-styled superhero went up in smoke today kids. We shall see. Time is Not on anyone's side."

Of course, there's still a chance Fox will find a way to get a reboot into production but it's looking doubtful with the deadline just eight weeks away.

There have been suggestions that Marvel would not take back Daredevil if it could be allowed access to use Galactus and Silver Surfer from Fox's Fantastic Four franchise.

But later reports said Fox wanted to keep all elements of Fantastic Four, »

- David Bentley

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Supernatural thriller Blood Fare starring Buck Rogers legend Gil Gerard to hold world premiere at Dragon*Con 2012

14 August 2012 6:29 AM, PDT

The world premiere of supernatural thriller Blood Fare, starring Buck Rogers legend Gil Gerard, will take place at Dragon*Con 2012, it has been announced.

The screening is scheduled for 8.30pm on Friday, August 31, at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta.

A Q&A will follow with the film's star Gil Gerard, famous for his lead role in the classic sci-fi movie and series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, and award-winning writer-director J.A. Steel.

Blood Fare is a Civil War ghost story with a modern twist, by J.A. Steel and co-producer Christian K. Koch. This is Steel's fourth feature film.

It tells the tale of Corporal Henry Trout (S. Edward Meek - Wild Stallion), who in 1861 fought valiantly in a forgotten skirmish after the first battle of Bull Run. Then, 150 years later, he comes face to face with his descendants as the battle for blood continues on a haunted battlefield.

Tyler (Brandi »

- David Bentley

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Russell Crowe's Noah and his ark revealed for Darren Aronofsky's Biblical epic

13 August 2012 6:20 PM, PDT

After starring in Ridley Scott's epic Gladiator and oddly off-key Robin Hood, Russell Crowe is going further back in time to play Noah - and we now have a first look at him in character.

A new picture shows Crowe gazing into the distance, perhaps as baffled by what 'gopher wood' actually is as the rest of the us. The Biblical reference to that unknown type of wood, used to construct the boat, has been the subject of discussion among scholars for centuries.

The new image follows recent pictures tweeted by director Darren Aronofsky that showed the ark under construction. All are included here.

While the shot of Crowe as Noah is nothing out of the ordinary, the film is shaping up to be much more than you might expect. After all, we have only recently seen an impressively-depicted deluge (as well as several arks, though of a modern »

- David Bentley

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Thor star Chris Hemsworth nearly turned down Snow White and the Huntsman

13 August 2012 3:36 PM, PDT

The fairy tale reimagining Snow White and the Huntsman has become overshadowed by the scandal of the alleged affair between director Rupert Sanders and star Kristen Stewart.

It reportedly led to Stewart quitting her role in romantic drama Cali so that she can sort out her personal life and lie low for a while.

And there is talk that Sanders may not direct the planned Snow White sequel because of pressure from his wife to stay away from Stewart.

It was Thor star Chris Hemsworth who played the huntsman - and in a recent interview he revealed he had doubts about appearing in the film in the first place.

Speaking in the Sunday Times, Hemsworth said: "My initial reaction was 'I don't want to do another fantastical film with a weapon that's not too far from a hammer.'"

He's referring, of course, to the similarity between Thor's Mjolnir and the huntsman's axe. »

- David Bentley

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Billion Dollar Batman: An essential look at caped crusader's journey to The Dark Knight Rises

13 August 2012 11:33 AM, PDT

Batman may have reached the end of his current journey on the big screen in The Dark Knight Rises but he was around a long time before Christopher Nolan's trilogy and he will no doubt return to cinemas at some point in the future.

Charting the character's journey in film, radio and television since he was conceived by Bob Kane in 1939 is the book Billion Dollar Batman.

It's an in-depth study of the caped crusader by Bruce Scivally, who examined Superman and James Bond in previous publications.

Scivally, a media expert and professor at the Illinois Institute of Art in Chicago, goes behind the cape and cowl for an exhaustive look at the character and how he has been interpreted over the decades.

With occasional black-and-white photographs of the various iterations of the character, this 446-page paperback is jam-packed with information and revealing insights.

We discover how Batman first »

- David Bentley

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Hugh Jackman confirms The Wolverine is standalone film not a sequel and won't be 'overloaded' with mutants

13 August 2012 9:08 AM, PDT

Filming is now under way in Australia on The Wolverine, Hugh Jackman's second solo adventure as the metal-laced antihero.

It's based largely on a comic book series in which the character travels to Japan and finds his claws clashing with samurai swords after he begins a forbidden romance.

As has been hinted during the long journey towards production getting started, it will not directly connect with 2009's X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Jackman told Total Film magazine: "We've deliberately not called it Wolverine 2 because we want it to be placed and feel like a standalone picture.

"With an all-new cast and setting it in Japan, it's going to give us a whole new visual aesthetic."

And in what must be seen as an acknowledgement of the unnecessary characters added to X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Jackman adds: "The approach to character means we won't be overloaded with mutants and teams and the like, »

- David Bentley

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John Williams' classic Superman score will not feature in Zack Snyder's Man of Steel

13 August 2012 9:02 AM, PDT

The classic Superman theme music by John Williams will not feature in the hero's new film Man of Steel, says director Zack Snyder.

You might well expect a reboot to go down a new path musically as well as in every other sense. But, nonetheless, there has been an expectation that Williams' iconic score would reappear in some form in the new film starring Henry Cavill.

The music for Man of Steel won't be added until the film is finished and so the first teaser trailers (see below) made temporary use of Howard Shore's score from The Lord of the Rings.

Many Superman enthusiasts were not too happy about that and one fan even went as far as replacing Shore's music with the John Williams theme (below).

But Snyder insists he won't be reusing any music from the previous movies.

He told Total Film: "We decided to act as »

- David Bentley

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