Carnage Is the Main Villain in Venom

Sony’s Spider-Man spin-offs continue to get more interesting by the minute. The studio is currently developing several movies, which will be centered on various characters from the Spider-Man universe, but may or may not actually include Spider-Man. The first of these movies is going to be a possibly R-rated Venom movie that is set for release next year and is to be directed by Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland). Now we know who the villain is, and this is a huge deal. Carnage, aka Cletus Kasady, is going to be introduced on the big screen in the Venom movie.

The news comes courtesy of The Hollywood Reporter, who recently spoke with Sony’s Tom Rothman about the Marvel Universe they are currently setting up. In the report, some new details about these movies were revealed and easily one of the biggest reveals is Carnage being in the Venom movie. That opens up a whole lot of possibilities and definitely lends credibility to the idea that this movie is going to be R-rated. Here’s what THR had to say about it.

“As for the expansion plans, Tom Hardy is starring in Venom, dated for Oct. 5, 2018, which will also feature the villain Carnage. A source says Holland is only contractually obligated to Spider-Man 2 and 3, but the intention is to bring him into the spinoffs and possibly other Marvel films (he is currently shooting Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War).”

It was hard to imagine a movie in which Venom was the good guy, but this is starting to make at least a little sense. Those who have read Marvel Comics over the years know that Carnage is one of the most ruthless and violent villains around. He makes Venom seem timid in some ways. In the beloved Maximum Carnage storyline, Venom actually teams up with Spider-Man, as well as Black Cat and Cloak and Dagger, in order to stop Carnage. So if there is one villain that could make Venom look a little less bad, it is Carnage. For those who may not be familiar, here is a brief character synopsis for Carnage.

“Cletus Kasady became a serial killer. He was then captured and sent to Ryker’s Island prison for 11 murders, though he bragged about killing a dozen more, where he shared a cell with Eddie Brock, the host of the alien symbiote that turns into the supervillain Venom. When Brock’s symbiote soon returned to be bonded again, allowing Venom to escape prison, the symbiote unknowingly left its offspring in the cell; due to its alien mindset, the symbiote felt no emotional attachment to its offspring, regarding it as insignificant, and thus never communicated its existence to Brock via their telepathic link. The new symbiote then bonded with Kasady, transforming him into Carnage.”

The THR report also mentions that the Sinister Six movie they were working on was scrapped. That said, by bringing in Venom and Carnage, and with Vulture and Shocker over in the MCU via Spider-Man: Homecoming, which was recently confirmed by Sony’s Amy Pascal to be in the same world as Venom, it is hard not to wonder if a Sinister Six movie is being bandied about. The report also mentions Kraven the Hunter and Mysterio, so that would more or less give us the six needed for that. We’ll have to wait and see, but for now, we can all just absorb the whole Carnage thing, which is, at least for Marvel fans, significant.


Saw 8: Legacy Gets Retitled Jigsaw, New Logo Unveiled

Oh, what a Halloween we’ll have this year. There are plenty of ghouls and goblins heading towards the local cinema. But perhaps more awaited is the return of Jigsaw! Yes, John Kramer will be back this October as the Saw legacy continues. The eighth movie in the series, this latest installment promises to rejuvenate the horror franchise after laying dormant for several years. Today, we have the official logo along with these words from Lionsgate.

“One of the highest grossing Horror franchises of all time is back, taking the Jigsaw killer’s signature brand of twisted scenarios to the next level.”

As previously reported, Jigsaw will be in theaters the weekend of Halloween, starting October 27, 2017. Lionsgate did not offer any more on the story, but we do have some ideas about where this particular installment is heading. The story takes place seven years after Saw: The Final Chapter. And it stars Laura Vandervoort (Bitten, Smallville) and Hannah Anderson (Shoot the Messenger, Lizzie Borden Took an Ax) in the leads.

It was previously reported that Tobin Bell will be back as the main villain John Kramer, albeit via flashbacks as he’s been dead since the third Saw movie, unless there is something sinister afoot that we don’t yet know. Michael and Peter Spierig of Daybreakers fame are helming this latest installment. Pete Goldfinger and Josh Stolberg are penning the screenplay with help from original creators James Wan and Leigh Whannell. Producers include Mark Burg, Gregg Hoffman, and Oren Koules.

As far as John Kramer is concerned, early reports on the film indicated that he’ll be back in a limited capacity. A glorified cameo. He is the Mickey Mouse of this saga, introduced 14 years ago, at a time when Saw was considered a breakthrough in the horror genre. It not only spawned 6 sequels and healthy filmmaking careers for James Wan and Leigh Whannell, but it also started a Halloween tradition that ran straight through for seven very successful years. For a couple of years, Paranormal Activity stood in its place while it hibernated. But now the iconic series is raring and ready to go, with its pig masks back in place.

Set photos revealed that there will be some grave robbing going down in the opening moments of this next installment. And these bodies turn up all over the city. Each corpse has met their own unique demise. An investigation gets underway. And all fingers point to John Kramer, aka Jigsaw. But how can this be? Jigsaw has been dead for more than a decade. The belief is that an apprentice has stepped in to pick up the mantle left behind by Kramer. And the clues may lead to someone embedded within the investigation. Neither Costas Mandylor nor Cary Elwes, both exposed as Kramer apprentices in past installments, are returning in Jigsaw, unless their appearance is planned as a surprise for fans. Though not officially confirmed by Lionsgate, the rest of the cast is believed to include Mandela Van Peebles, Brittany Allen, Callum Keith Rennie, Matt Passmore, Hannah Emily Anderson, Josiah Black, Shaquan Lewis, Michael Bolsvert, and James Gomez.

Jon Cor’s Ryan from the last installment, 2010′s Saw 3D, is rumored to be back in this sequel. Though it isn’t known how much time he gets in the overall plot. Ryan was seen in the opening trap with Sebastian Pigot’s Brad in Saw 7. Writers Patrick Melton and Marcus Dunstan previously revealed in that film’s commentary track for the Blu-ray and DVD release, that it was Ryan and Brad who were wearing the pig masks at the end of the film, leading to speculation they may be the ones who unearth Jigsaw‘s grave in this new installment. Jigsaw died in Saw III, but he has been featured through flashbacks in ever subsequent Saw movie. With Tobin Bell returning here, it sounds like Saw fans are in for an old school treat that will terrorize their soul. While we await the first teaser trailer, take a look at the official logo.

<em>Jigsaw</em> logo Poster


Han Solo Directors Were Fired, Will Ron Howard Take Over?

After more than four months of production, Lucasfilm officially announced that directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller left the Han Solo: A Star Wars Story project in the midst of shooting, citing creative differences. As it turns out, Lord and Miller were fired by Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy. And on Monday, Kennedy released a statement stating that a replacement will be announced soon. The news came during a short hiatus, to review what had been shot so far, and to reportedly clear the air.

An inside source close to the Han Solo movie has told The Hollywood Reporter that the directors were let go for attempting to add too much humor into the character of Han Solo. Lord and Miller (21 Jumpstreet, The Lego Movie) come from a comedic background and seemed like an odd choice from the get go. The inside source added that “people need to understand that Han Solo is not a comedic personality. He’s sarcastic and selfish.” Something the two directors apparently didn’t understand.

The inside source claims that Christopher Miller and Phil Lord were “blindsided” by their firing. The directors had relocated their families to London for the initial production of the project all the way through until now. But another anonymous source is disputing that bit of intel. It has been reported that the friction between the directors and Lucasfilm began almost immediately. But it was assumed that whatever differences there were, could be worked out over time. It has also been reported that Lord and Miller did not feel like they had total support from producer Allison Shearmur, Lucasfilm’s acting representative on set for the project. In addition, the visions of the directors reportedly clashed with Lawrence Kasdan who wrote The Empire Strikes Back as well as the script for the Han Solo movie with his son, Joe Kasdan.

Apparently, Disney and Lucasfilm have already chosen a replacement and according to the sources, Ron Howard’s name has come up a number of times, which could be an intriguing idea. Ron Howard has a history with Lucasfilm, and in 1988 he directed the fantasy adventure Willow for creator George Lucas, which many complained was a Star Wars rip-off. The other name that has popped up is Kasdan, which would make more sense, since he is so close to the project already. And he already has a rich history within the Star Wars universe. Not to mention he’s directed a number of classic movies. It’s clear that whoever steps in and takes over has quite a lot of work to do in order to keep the project moving forward.

Most of this information comes from anonymous sources, so the information should be taken as such. This is all current speculation as the news is still fresh. But it does not appear that Lucasfilm is intent on shutting down production for too much longer. Lucasfilm and Disney were in a similar situation, but a lot further down the line, when they took Gareth Edwards out from Rogue One at the last minute. They brought Tony Gilroy into rewrite and direct a large amount of reshoots to get the movie to fit in line with Lucasfilm’s vision. The decision paid off well for both Disney and Lucasfilm since the movie went on to be a hit that was praised both by critics and most fans. The current news is not expected to affect the release of the movie on May 25th, 2018. More updates coming soon.


Daniel Day-Lewis Retires from Acting Once Again

Oscar Award winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis has decided to quit acting. Again. The highly selective British born method actor has taken less roles over the years, but has remained in high demand. Day-Lewis has gained praise for his chameleon like versatility and intense acting chops, often not leaving character, even off-screen. During the filming of Lincoln, cast and crew had to refer to Day-Lewis as Mr. Lincoln while on set. His stage career came to an end in 1990 when he walked out of a performance of Hamlet, claiming that he had seen the ghost of his late father and quit acting in the early 2000s, disillusioned with Hollywood.

Variety reports that Daniel Day-Lewis has not given a reason for his statement. Day-Lewis’ representative, Leslee Dart had this to say.

“Daniel Day-Lewis will no longer be working as an actor. He is immensely grateful to all of his collaborators and audiences over the many years. This is a private decision and neither he nor his representatives will make any further comment on this subject.”

The 60-year old Day-Lewis has one final movie, Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread set to hit theaters on December 25th, 2017 and according to an inside source, Day-Lewis will be on hand to do press for the upcoming movie. Phantom Thread is a drama that takes place in the world of high fashion and marks a reunion for Thomas Anderson and Day-Lewis who had previously worked on 2007′s There Will Be Blood, which earned the actor an Oscar for best actor.

Daniel Day-Lewis is the first male actor to have won three Oscars for the lead actor category. He won for Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln, Anderson’s There Will Be Blood, and Jim Sheridan’s My Left Foot while also being nominated for The Gangs of New York. In addition to Oscars, Day-Lewis has also won four BAFTA awards for best actor, three Screen Actors Guild awards, and two Golden Globes as well as earning knighthood at Buckingham Palace in June of 2014.

Daniel Day-Lewis returned to acting after a 5-year absence in 2002 for Scorsese’s Gangs of New York. For his role, Day-Lewis took lessons as an apprentice butcher, hiring a butcher from South London to teach him how to carve up carcasses. In addition, the actor also hired a circus performer to teach him how to throw knives. While filming he was never out of character, even when he developed pneumonia. The performance earned him his third Academy Award nomination and his second BAFTA award for Best Actor in a Leading Role.

Though it looks as if Daniel Day-Lewis is done acting for now, maybe he’ll make a return to the craft at some point. He’s only 60 years old and he’s one of the most celebrated actors of his generation. Those left wanting more Day-Lewis can check him out in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread in December. Hopefully by then the actor will have an update on his decision to walk away from it all.


Twilight Zone Movie Gets MonsterVerse Writer Christine Lavaf

The Twilight Zone movie is finally starting to see some forward motion with the announcement of Christine Lavaf coming on board to write the screenplay. The project has been in development since 2009 at Warner Bros. and has had Rand Ravich, Anthony Peckham, and Joby Harlold as previous writers attached, but this is the first major development for the movie since 2013 when it was announced that Joseph Kosinski (Oblivion) was in talks to direct and that Anthony Peckham would be writing the screenplay.

Variety reports that Christine Lavaf will take over the reigns and write the newest screenplay for the “in development hell” Twilight Zone movie. Lavaf has recently sold three original pilots to FX, including I’Human with Nina Jacobsen’s Color Force producing. In addition she was also in the writing room for Legendary’s next Monsterverse movie Godzilla 2. She has also written or co-written Fringe: Tales From the Fringe for DC Comics. It is unclear in what manner the movie will be presented, but it has been rumored that it could be based off of classic television from the 1960s.

The Twilight Zone is being produced by Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way Productions with his partner Jennifer Davisson Killoran. The production company started in 2004 with The Assassination of Richard Nixon and has gone on to produce The Aviator, The Revenant, The Wolf of Wall Street, and the 2016 documentary Before the Flood among other projects. It was announced in 2016 that Appian would be producing The Twilight Zone adaptation, but not much has been shared about the project since then.

The Twilight Zone is an anthology TV series created by Rod Serling and originally aired from 1959 to 1964. The show was revived in the mid eighties as well as 2002 to a mixed response. In 1983 John Landis, Steven Spielberg, Joe Dante, and George Miller directed a big screen adaptation of the anthology style show to mixed reviews. The movie gained negative attention before its release because of a stunt helicopter accident during filming that took the lives of actor Vic Morrow and two child actors, Myca Dinh and Shin-Yi Chen. The child actors were hired illegally in violation of a law stating that children could not work late at night and a legal battle ensued where nobody was found to be criminally liable for the accident.

Hopefully Christine Lavaf stays on board to finish the screenplay and we get to see The Twilight Zone sometime in the near future. There have been plenty of false starts since 2009, but it appears that Appian Way Productions is intent on getting the project off of the ground. DiCaprio has said in the past that his favorite TV series is the Twilight Zone, so that has to count for something, right? It has been rumored that some of the 92 scripts that Serling wrote could be used for upcoming movie since Warner Bros. owns all of the rights to the completed scripts.


Han Solo Movie Directors Quit in the Middle of Shooting

Almost exactly four months after the first Han Solo cast photo was revealed on the first day of production, directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller have parted ways with Han Solo: A Star Wars Story. The directors are leaving after four months of shooting, with creative differences being cited as the reason. Here’s what the filmmaker had to say in a brief statement below.

“Unfortunately, our vision and process weren’t aligned with our partners on this project. We normally aren’t fans of the phrase ‘creative differences’ but for once this cliché is true. We are really proud of the amazing and world-class work of our cast and crew.” also confirms that, despite the directors parting ways with this project, the May 25, 2018 release date will still be intact. This news also comes just a few months after the filmmakers participated in a Han Solo Omaze video with Warwick Davis, where they revealed a mysterious new creature that was seen hanging around the set. LucasFilm president Kathleen Kennedy also issued her own brief statement about the directors parting ways, while hinting that their replacement will be revealed soon.

“Phil Lord and Christopher Miller are talented filmmakers who have assembled an incredible cast and crew, but it’s become clear that we had different creative visions on this film, and we’ve decided to part ways. A new director will be announced soon.”

Before Phil Lord and Chris Miller were announced as the Han Solo: A Star Wars Story directors in July 2015, there had been rumors that the studio was seeking Jon Favreau, Matthew Vaughn and Joss Whedon to direct, although it remains unclear if the studio will circle back to them, now that Phil Lord and Chris Miller have backed out. Still, it seems unlikely that any of those filmmakers would board the project, with Joss Whedon currently set to write and direct Warner Bros.’ Batgirl, Matthew Vaughn in post-production on Kingsman: The Golden Circle and Jon Favreau working on The Jungle Book 2 and The Lion King remake for Disney.

Earlier this month, new Han Solo set photos leaked from the island of Fuerteventura, part of the Canary Islands, which has been rumored to be used for scenes set in the iconic Tattoine, while other rumors claim that this location is being used for Han Solo’s (Alden Ehrenreich) homeland of Corellia, which has been referenced in the movies before, although the actual planet has never been seen before. Disney and LucasFilm haven’t confirmed if production will fully be shut down or not, but with the directors backing out, it seems likely. Hopefully we’ll have more updates on Han Solo: A Star Wars Story soon, following this huge bombshell.


Fox-Sky Deal Review Submitted To UK Government

Britain’s media regulator Ofcom has formally submitted the findings of its review of 21st Century Fox’s proposed £11.7B (($14.7B) takeover of pay-TV giant Sky as planned. The report, which was conducted to assess issues of media plurality, was received by UK Culture Secretary Karen Bradley on Tuesday and, as expected, contents of the report have not been disclosed.

In March, Ofcom was instructed to investigate Fox’s bid to acquire the 61% share of Sky which it did not already own as a matter of public interest. Bradley issued a European intervention notice requesting Ofcom to report by May 16 to the department with regard to both plurality and commitment to broadcast standards. (That date was shifted to today after British Prime Minister Theresa May called a snap general election on June 8).

In a statement on Tuesday, Ofcom confirmed the submission of the “public interest report” saying that “the Secretary of State will now decide whether to refer the proposed deal to the Competition and Markets Authority for a ‘phase’ two inquiry.” It said a decision on this was expected to be made by June 29.

Ofcom has an ongoing duty to be satisfied that the holders of broadcast licenses are fit and proper to hold such licenses. The public interest test that Ofcom had been asked to make and the fit and proper test are separate legal processes.

In April, the European Commission gave Rupert Murdoch’s company the approval for the takeover of the Euro pay-TV giant.

This isn’t the first time the Murdochs have been down the fit and proper path. In 2011, the UK phone-hacking scandal forced the then-News Corp to scrap a deal to acquire the rest of Sky, a takeover long-coveted by Murdoch Sr.


‘American Assassin’ Red Band Trailer: Launch Of New Action Franchise?

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CBS and Lionsgate are sure starting to look like they’ve got the ingredients to launch an action hero franchise. American Assassin, built on a deep well of bestselling novels by the late Vince Flynn, has an appealing young protagonist in Dylan O’Brien, a strong veteran actor in Michael Keaton, and all the inherent action director Michael Cuesta could put on the screen in a revenge tale that could be the start of a Jack Ryan-like journey for O’Brien’s Mitch Rapp character. Here is the Red Band trailer. The CBS Films/Lionsgate thriller bows Sept 15.

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