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Here’s what the nerds were talking about this week…
1) Comic Book Movies, We Got Comic Book Movies
While Christopher Nolan seems to have a lock on DC Entertainment’s big guns – Batman and Superman – there has finally been some movement on movies based on other DC heroes. Brad Peyton, the director of Journey 2: The Mysterious Island has been selected by Warner Bros. to rewrite and direct Lobo.
Lobo, if you’ll remember, is DC’s blue-skinned, intergalactic bounty hunter. Guy Ritchie was previously attached to direct but he has spent the last few years in Sherlock Holmes-land. If all goes well, Peyton could be launching a new anti-hero franchise.
On the other side of town, Marvel is casting Iron Man 3. Guy Pearce is in negotiations to join the threequel playing Aldrich Killian. The more we hear about this project, the more it looks like the movie will use elements from Warren Ellis sci-fi heavy Extremis run in the comics.
And while most franchises are looking long in the tooth at this stage, having interesting thespians like Pearce in the cast will keep things fresh. Marvel owner Disney also announced that Iron Man 3 will be shot in China and co-produced by China-based DMG Entertainment.
2) Before Watchmen Gets Serious
DC’s all-star comics prequel to the Alan Moore-Dave Gibbons mini-series Watchmen was always going to cause some controversy. But with the hype and the high-profile talent involved, it looked like things were in the plus column. Not so after this week.
In a thought-provoking editorial on the website Comics Alliance, David Brothers laid out his reasons why he would not be supporting Before Watchmen, taking DC to task for allegedly mistreating the creators and noting his distaste with how the company is handling the new books. (He also writes about his boycott of Marvel Studios’ The Avengers for the company’s alleged lack of respect towards creators.)
Following the treatise, DC Comics writer Chris Robertson quit DC, citing creator treatment and Before Watchmen as reasons, although his ethical stance was marred by the timing of his book iZombie being cancelled. (He still had a contract to write some other comics but the situation quickly became one of “I quit” and “You can’t quit, we fire you.”)
Will other creators and voices speak out against Before Watchmen? How effective would a boycott be?
3) Speaking of Mistreated Creators…
The check that DC Comics (then Detective Comics) gave to Superman creators Joe Siegel and Jerry Schuster, then two young artists from Cleveland, to buy the rights to their new creation for $130, sold for $160,000 this week at an online auction conducted by ComicConnect.com.
It’s considered one of the most historical artifacts in comic book history. I hope the new owner gives it a good home, even though I think it belongs in a museum.
4) Putting the Ego in Lego
Want to make your own Lego DC superhero movie? There’s an app for that.
Lego, DC and Warner Bros. Conusmer Products this week launched the LEGO DC Super Heroes Movie Maker app, which can be had for free on iTunes. It allows you to use your iPhone to make stop-motion movies with tools that are said to make it easy to shoot, edit and score your little piece de resistance, save it and share it. It’s got color filters and music and everything.
Here’s the trailer:
5) Major Suckage.
So you’re an actor. You starred in a cult TV series playing a vampire. You were a childhood hero of Johnny Depp. And now, while in your 80s, Depp is making a big-screen remake of your TV show, and Tim Burton is directing it, and everyone is talking about you and your old show. And you even have a cameo in the movie, which is opening in three weeks.
And then you die.
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