Marvel Studios

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What’s the fun of a shared, multi-film universe if you aren’t going to use it? In the case of Marvel Studios, they’ve been very much enjoying the benefits of having characters from one movie series pop up in another. Clark Gregg took Agent Coulson from Iron Man to Thor; Robert Downey Jr. popped up at the end of The Incredible Hulk; and Hayley Atwell is rumored to be turning up as Peggy Carter in a flashback in the upcoming Ant-Man. Of course, nearly everyone from the Marvel Cinematic Universe so far showed up in Avengers: Age of Ultron, with the notable exception of last summer’s space-faring heroes of Guardians of the Galaxy. But you know it’s only a matter of time that they turn up in other places, and Star Lord himself, Chris Pratt, confirmed that he has room in his contract for Marvel adventures outside of Guardians. (more…)

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Way back in 1989, when Jack Nicholson was cast as The Joker in Tim Burton’s Batman, the idea of a seriously huge Hollywood star playing a comic book villain in some silly comic book movie seemed a bit out there. Of course, it had been done before. Marlon Brando played Jor-El in Superman the Movie, which also featured another established star, Gene Hackman, as Lex Luthor, but Nicholson was something else altogether: Hollywood royalty. Now it’s not so uncommon. You had Robert Redford in Captain America: The Winter Soldier and up next you’ll have Michael Douglas in Ant-Man. But is the comic book movie business perhaps due for a McConaissance? According to the actor, it’s not outside the realm of possibility. (more…)

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Shooting on Captain America: Civil War is now underway in Atlanta, and it promises to be an adventure packed to the brim with callbacks, Easter eggs and surprise appearances. In fact, something this big, and with all the attention that a multi-billion dollar franchise brings to a project, it’s going to be hard to keep some of the details under wraps till opening day. To wit, some exterior scenes revealed our first look at Frank Grillo as Crossbones, the next level iteration of his Captain America: The Winter Soldier character Brock Rumlow, whose comic book visage is posted above. So is it everything you hoped it would be? (more…)

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They say it’s never better than the first time, and it turns out that that’s kind of true for Joss Whedon and his foray into blockbuster filmmaking. Not for the first time, Whedon is talking about the difficulties in making Avengers: Age of Ultron, and the difficulties in trying to top himself while improving himself after the smash hit that was 2012’s The Avengers. With then one movie under his belt, Whedon became the second most successful director in terms of box office take of a single movie of all time. For his encore, he took on the hotly anticipated sequel to the superhero movie, which wasn’t just facing the crush of expectation left over from The Avengers, but of the other four Marvel Studios movies released in-between Avengers adventures too. In that case, it’s pretty understandable then that in Whedon’s case, two was enough. (more…)

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A lot of people think that Ava DuVernay was robbed when, earlier this year, she did not receive a nomination for Best Director at the Academy Awards. A nom for DuVernay would have been historic, as she could have been the first African-American woman ever nominated for Best Director, along with becoming one of just a handful of female filmmakers who have gotten the distinction at all. So what’s a good runner-up prize? Maybe getting a film franchise? It’s a possibility as reports are leaking that DuVernay is on the short list to direct one of two potantial, future Marvel Studios movies. So which would be a better fit: Black Panther or Captain Marvel? (more…)

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In a world where the machines have risen up, spellchecks are useless and autocorrect walks against wombat pinball. Internet word slinger Mason Fabulous and satin voiced flim-flam artist and brand expert Hermes “Bear” Brunson must band together to save the world the only way they now how. By watching trailers on YouTube and talking over them.

Other than watching videos on the radio (which is as exciting as it sounds) this week on the show: (more…)

Agent-Carter

It’s that time of year when fans learn whether their investment in a year’s worth of a TV show will pay off in a second season or whether it was time well wasted. TV upfronts are next week, the annual announcement by the networks of what they’ll be showing next year and on what day of the week you’ll be able to watch it, but since news goes better in several doses and not just a single big dose, we’re getting some early renewal and cancellation notices going into the weekend. ABC, for instance, has been playing its cards pretty close to the chest, but Marvel fans can breath easier today because not only will Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. be back next year, but so will Agent Carter. (more…)

Shortlist of Future ‘Spider-Man’ Directors Leaked

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It is an experience that is both thrilling and daunting, getting the chance to make a Spider-Man movie. We know that another Spider-Man movie is coming, that part is inevitable, but the question of who will get to make, that’s a truly compelling point of interest. Sam Raimi made three, and despite whatever reservations you hold about that third one, he had one TKO in Spider-Man 2. Marc Webb, meanwhile, did a decent enough job on two Amazing Spider-Man films to at least make some bank for Sony, but it’s agreed all around that they were creative duds. Webb, of course, had a cool spider-centric last name, but as to his background, his previous claim to fame was the indie rom-com (500) Days of Summer. They wouldn’t go to that well again for a Spidey movie, would they? (more…)

By now the mid-credits scene has been firmly established as a trademark of the Marvel Studios series of films, and even though Avengers: Age of Ultron didn’t have a funny little shwarma-like scene at the end, it did feature at least a little something that teases… Something. Featuring a character… Well, you know. Obviously, to discuss the implications, you have to know what it is and that’s a spoiler, but for those of you who have already seen Age of Ultron, and according to the box office numbers there were a lot of you, I’m sure you’re wondering about the thing that guy had and the other thing that he said, and Marvel producer Kevin Feige is here to explain. (more…)

AgeofUltron

Even this age of consistent big event movies, it’s hard to think of anything as big as Avengers: Age of Ultron. The first blockbuster Avengers was a minor miracle of form and function, taking three characters with their own film series, as well as a myriad of supporting characters, and brought them all together in a fun, action-packed and character-driven adventure that also reflected the specific voice of its filmmaker. Looking back, watching The Avengers unfold, Joss Whedon made it look too easy, which is why Ultron seems all the more susceptible to “sequelitis.” Age of Ultron is bigger, louder and even more stuffed with characters, references and action than the first, but while the endeavor seems at times to be getting away from Whedon, he does seem to achieve everything the movie needed, and wanted to do. (more…)