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Drew McWeeny at HitFix is reporting that no fewer than five sources have told him that Warner Bros. has a strict “No jokes” rule for all DC superhero movies in development. McWeeny posits that the rule is likely a reaction to the failure of Green Lantern, a terrible movie that was chock-full of jokes. It seems likely that the huge success of the very, very serious Dark Knight Trilogy also played a role in the formulation of the No Jokes rule, but I think they have learned the wrong lesson from their failures and successes.
Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy took itself very seriously, exploring fear and pain and chaos. Batman Begins was an exciting departure from the lighter, brighter superhero movies we were used to, and the sequels plunged us even deeper into the darkness. The Dark Knight was probably the best, most important superhero movie that has ever been made, »
- Mily Dunbar
Tentpole movies get kind of a rough ride in terms of public perception. In the realm of cinematic releases, the term has become synonymous with the Big Bad Movie Studios sucking all the air out of the box office, and suffocating smaller, independent fare. They are associated with a bland, focus-group tested, homogenized type of filmmaking that blindly draws in the masses and force-feeds them pointless narrative junk food. Everything that’s wrong with the modern film industry can be blamed on the over-inflated budgets of the tentpole movie – isn’t that right?
Well, not really. First of all, tentpole movies serve a purpose. In theory, it is the job of a tentpole movie to hold up, balance out and support the financial performance of a studio in any given year. The tentpole movie is supposed to give the smaller productions breathing space by giving the studio the financial confidence »
- Sarah Myles
Our weekly round-up of all the latest superhero news and talking points, including Ant-Man, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Doctor Strange, Ms. Marvel, Black Panther, Guardians of the Galaxy, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Luke Cage, Big Hero 6, The Sinister Six, The Fantastic Four, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Superman Lives, Shazam, Arrow, The Flash, Gotham, Constantine, Powers and more….
Marvel Studios kicked off production on the Phase Three launching Ant-Man this week in San Francisco, with director Peyton Reed taking to Twitter to officially announce the start of filming, which was followed by the first official shot of Paul Rudd as Scott Lang, a couple of behind-the-scenes images of Evangeline Lilly as Hope Van Dyne, and a few FM exclusive set photos and a scene description of the first day’s shoot [see here]. And to coincide with the start of production, Marvel released an updated cast list – which also includes Michael Douglas »
- Gary Collinson
However, the actress looks set to change all of that as she takes on a very different role in Miss Meadows. The movie will see Holmes play a sweet and inspirational school teacher…who just so happens to spend her evenings as a ruthless vigilante wiping out her small town’s scum, particularly those who harm children.
It’s a strange looking film in some ways, but one which has the potential to be something truly special. Based on some of her past roles, Holmes seems like an unexpected choice, but that too should help to separate Miss Meadows from any other similar normal person by day, vigilante by night type of releases.
Miss Meadows was »
- Josh Wilding
While her most well-known role to date has been on the long-running tv series Dawson’s Creek, actress Katie Holmes is no stranger to the big screen, having been seen in movies such as Go, The Gift, Batman Begins, and Mad Money. While her last movie appearance was in 2011′s Jack and Jill, the actress has been busy, and one of her upcoming features is Miss Meadows. Focusing on a schoolteacher who spends her nights as a vigilante, the film is written and directed by Karen Leigh Hopkins, and James Badge Dale and Callan Mulvey join Holmes onscreen. The first trailer for the movie has now arrived, giving the audience a look at what makes the titular character tick. The trailer for the film, which doesn’t have an official Us release date yet, can be seen below.
The post Katie Holmes dishes out her own brand of justice in »
- Deepayan Sengupta
Is Katie Holmes the most unlikely vigilante yet? In Miss Meadows, which premiered at Tribeca earlier this year and will be arriving in theaters this November, the Batman Begins actress steps up to fight some crime herself – albeit while clad in tap shoes and garishly flowery dresses. The first trailer for the pic paints it as a bizarre cross between Mary Poppins and Hobo with a Shotgun – though the thriller doesn’t totally appear to have mastered that tonally bizarre combo.
The brief trailer shows Miss Meadows as a prim and proper elementary school teacher who enjoys teaching manners to her pupils… when she’s not blowing out the brains of her town’s miscreants. It’s a one-joke premise (how’s that for a split personality?!), but with James Badge Dale and Callan Mulvery in the supporting cast, perhaps Miss Meadows will be enjoyable from an acting standpoint. Then again, »
- Isaac Feldberg
Every once in a while we writers are fortunate to discover a story of determination and passion that inspires us, and reminds us of why we wanted to write about film.
For that reason is to bring experiences and stories such as the one behind the making of Shockwave Darkside 3D to the forefront so that they don’t go untold.
What better way to hear the stories and experience than through the personal reflections of writer-director Jay Weisman and producer Christian Arnold-Beutel and their own creative war that mirrors the last great war raging on the moon in their contribution to a grand genre.
Right now I’m looking at my Marvel Comics passport holder that I found in the Super Hero Island gift shop at Universal Studios’ Islands of Adventure in Orlando, Florida. My wife and I had just rode the Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man 3D ride for probably the thirtieth time, »
- Jon Lyus
Oh you read that that right! Today we’ve got our first look at Miss Meadows that debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival and stars Katie Holmes as a kind kindergarten teacher, who’s also (seemingly) some kind of vigilant as well!
Written and directed by Karen Leigh Hopkins, it’s probably about time that Holmes took something different on and surely this leap will garner her a little more respect in the field. She’s considered to lack a little conviction with her roles but I actually didn’t mind her at all in Batman Begins, but it’s been a long time since Go (1999), when all that raw talent bubbled to the surface.
In Miss Meadows, Holmes plays the title role, an elementary school teacher (Primary School for the UK) who helps the community and loves her garden. However, at night she’s seeking retribution and keeping the »
- Dan Bullock
Hello again, dear readers. There are only two weeks left in August, and the summer movie season has started winding down. With that in mind, it’s time to start looking ahead to what’s coming out in the fall and winter. And this week’s Trailer Trashin’ examines what looks like a very promising November release – Christopher Nolan’s upcoming sci-fi film Interstellar.
Premise: When a wormhole – which theoretically can connect widely-separated regions of space – is discovered, explorers and scientists unite to embark on a voyage through it, transcending the limits of human space travel. Among the travelers is Cooper (Matthew McConaughey), a widowed engineer who decides to leave behind his two children to join the voyage with the goal of saving humanity.
- Timothy Monforton
Written by Frank Miller
Art by David Mazzucchelli
Colored by Richmond Lewis
Lettered by Todd Klein
Batman Year One was the first Batman (and DC) comic I read back in 2010. The things that stood out to me were the poetic nature of Frank Miller’s writing (mainly the caption boxes), the parts that Batman Begins homaged, and how Jim Gordon seemed to have more page time than Batman. After rereading this story a few times over the year, I realized that Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli could have named this story “Jim Gordon Year One” and his ups and downs as he goes from a do-gooder cop from Chicago to an overworked Gotham policeman who has an affair with one of his co-workers to an ally of Batman. His character arc is just as compelling and more down to earth than Batman’s. Letterer Todd Klein shows this »
- Logan Dalton
We've seen Katie Holmes smirk her way through many performances like Batman Begins, Thank You for Smoking, Don't Be Afraid of the Dark and Jack & Jill. But now she's entering a whole new realm with Miss Meadows. The film debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival, and now the first trailer has arrived showing Holmes as a sweet, inspirational grade school teacher by day, who totes a cute little gun as a ruthless vigilante outside of the school yard. She goes from trimming roses to cutting down the scum of her small town. This looks so weird, especially with someone like Holmes in the lead, but you can see for yourself. Here's the first trailer for Karen Leigh Hopkins' Miss Meadows, originally from E! Online: Miss Meadows is written and directed by Karen Leigh Hopkins (writer of Because I Said So). Katie Holmes (Batman Begins, Don't Be Afraid of the Dark) plays the titular character, »
- Ethan Anderton
Last night, a Playboy interview with Frank Miller was brought to my attention as he discusses his new film, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, as well as his interpretation of Batman as seen in his graphic novels "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns" and "Batman: Year One". He also doesn't shy away from giving his impression of movies based on characters he's worked on, up to and including Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises, but let's take this one step at a time. As far as his approach to Batman, whom he portrayed as older and more grizzled, he says, "Well, you do get crabbier as you get older. laughs Also, I never believed that a guy who tortured people and dressed like Dracula was the most pleasant person to have over for dinner." Zack Snyder appears to be taking this approach »
- Brad Brevet
For almost 50 years, Batman has graced the silver screen. Whether working solo or accompanied by sidekicks and associates, Gotham City is continually saved by his enduring presence. Even though the eight theatrical live-action films featuring the Caped Crusader have had their ups and downs, there is no denying his appeal as a lead character.
With that in mind, these are all theatrical Batman releases, ranked from worst to best:
8. Batman and Robin (1997)
The dark cloud over a struggling franchise, Joel Schumacher’s second directorial outing in the Batman franchise hammered the last nail in the coffin and became known as one of the worst sequels, nay films, of all time. From the garish set design, poor character development, uninspired casting and hideously unfunny pun-filled script, Batman and Robin was a mistake from the moment it went into production.
7. Batman: The Movie (1966)
Occasionally forgotten as the first theatrical Batman film, this »
- Katie Wong
Before he would attract Hollywood's attention with "Sin City" and "300" —both graphic novels adapted into feature films, the former seeing a sequel released this year ("Sin City: A Dame To Kill For" opens on Friday)— Frank Miller had spent 20 years as a blue-chip comic book creator. Given the keys to the Batman franchise in the '80s, Miller's "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns" and "Batman: Year One" were widely believed to have reinvented the character, with those works undoubtedly serving as the template for Christopher Nolan's take on the comic hero. (Darren Aronofsky tried to make 'Year One' before "Batman Begins" but couldn't get it moving, and in 2011 an animated version of the graphic novel was released on home video). And speaking recently with Playboy, Miller revealed his inspiration for making Bruce Wayne older, more grizzled and more vengeful. "Well, you do get crabbier as you get older. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Everyone seems to be talking about a solo female superhero movie lately. And sure, I think it has a lot of potential, but there is one sentiment that makes me cringe every time it gets mentioned. People keep saying how we, as a society, are finally ready for a solo female superhero film. Guess what! We aren’t finally ready for a solo female on the big screen. We’ve been ready for a good, long while now, and the reason we haven’t had a successful female superhero flick has nothing to do with the gender of the hero.
Now, prepare yourselves. Take some deep breaths. Count to ten. Whatever you need... Because we're going to look at some history.
There is no doubt that women, both real and fictional, have not always been treated as well as they should have been. It’s been a long road to »
- Douglass Poulsen
Out of Marvel Studios’ ten films, five are origin stories (six, if you count Avengers, which is technically an origin of the team). In fact, most superhero films are origin stories, as the first film in a franchise is usually dedicated to showcasing how the titular character donned their cape, cowl, spandex, or armored suit (45 minutes in) and became the hero we went to the theater to see in the first place. There are a few exceptions, of course, like Tim Burton’s Batman, but by and large most superheroes are given an origin story to set the stage and lay the groundwork for the sequel.
According to Devin Faraci of Badass Digest though, Marvel is done making origin stories. When speaking on the Meet The Movie Press Podcast late last week, Faraci spoke specifically about Marvel’s upcoming Doctor Strange film, and broke the news that the film would not be an origin, »
- James Garcia
25 years ago, Tim Burton showed people how it was done. His Batman, unlike almost every superhero movie that’s been released since, started with the character already in action. It was not an origin story. Sure it briefly explained how Bruce Wayne became Batman, but he’s Batman the entire movie. That’s radically different from Batman Begins, […]
- Germain Lussier
According to Badass Digest’s Devin Faraci, who recently appeared on the “Meet the Movie Press” podcast, Marvel’s upcoming Doctor Strange film will not be an origin story. Instead the film is supposedly “not going to be twenty-minutes of [Stephen Strange] being a doctor,” and will jump right into the character being the fully-formed Sorcerer Supreme.
Faraci states that at one point, the film was a traditional superhero origin story, but that’s all changed now that Prometheus scribe Jon Spaihts is on board to rewrite the script previously penned by Sahara and Conan the Barbarian writer Joshua Oppenheimer.
“So, for Doctor Strange they’ve had a script in-house forever. It is a pretty standard origin story for Doctor Strange. It’s got Baron Mordo as the bad guy. That’s all gone. Marvel’s new thing is no more origin stories. So, Doctor Strange movie no longer has an origin. »
- James Garcia
We’ve all been there. A group of friends or perhaps colleagues, at a bar around the block from a cinema or in your office rec room, chewing the cud about movies. One particular film comes up in the discussion, most likely a big release. Conversation turns to debate, since one of your group loves said picture and another loathes it. The more the fan sings its praises, the stauncher the naysayer’s protest becomes. With debate coming close to evolving into an argument, the critic goes for the home run strike by throwing out the gamechanging claim. “It’s full of plot holes” they declare.
Sometimes the fan will be silenced, the other members of the group may nod in agreement or realization. The idea has been planted in their heads, and they would have to go watch the film to disprove the critic. Even if they did, they »
- Scott Patterson
Bruce Wayne and his alter ego Batman have been one of the most complex characters in pop culture, endlessly analyzed, since his first appearance 75 years ago. From comics, to television and to film, Batman and his creators have designed a layered, flawed and fascinating character. Never was this truer than in director Christopher Nolan’s brilliant Dark Knight Trilogy, beginning with 2005’s Batman Begins, continuing with 2008’s The Dark Knight and ending with 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises. Nolan essentially stripped Batman and it’s themes to their bare bones and created a world that both honored and challenged what we knew of this character. Nolan’s trilogy examines ideas of integrity, morality, chaos, heroism and faith.
**Obvious spoilers ahead for the entire Nolan series**
“Because he’s the hero Gotham deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So we’ll hunt him. Because he can take it. »
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