It looks like Fox is starting to show its cards (sorry) for the upcoming Channing Tatum-starring Gambit. Also in today’s Movie Morsels, we have an enticing trailer tease for Chris Hemsworth‘s The Huntsman: Winter’s War, updates on Disney’s animated Zootopia and the Universal Monsters franchise, and more!
According to X-Men and Star Wars: The Force Awakens producer Simon Kinberg, Fox is following Marvel’s template for telling superhero stories on screen by finding the form that best follows the function of each film. The studio will startwith Deadpool and continue with its first solo movie starring the ever-popular mutant Gambit.
“I mean Deadpool obviously has a very different, almost antithetical tone to the mainline X-Men movies,” says the filmmaker. “The X-Men movies are dramatic and almost operatic, whereas Deadpool is irreverent and hysterical and sort of a dirty R-rated comedy in many ways. And Gambit will have its own different flavor and tone to it; it will be more of like a heist movie and a sexy thriller in a way.”
One can easily see star Channing Tatum handling this kind of material with wit and aplomb when Gambit arrives on October 7, 2016.
The Huntsman: Winter’s War
For all the CG effects and outrageous costume designs hinted at in the new trailer tease for the Cedric Nicolas-Troyan-directed follow-up to Universal’s Snow White and the Huntsman, the most enticing element in The Huntsman: Winter’s War may be Chris Hemsworth’s bemused grin.
After playing Thor in four Marvel movies, Hemsworth has nothing left to prove in this kind of role. But paired with Charlize Theron, Emily Blunt, and Jessica Chastian–three of the finest actresses working in films today — he’s well worth looking forward to in the April 22, 2016 release.
After scoring The Incredibles, Ratatouille, Up, and Inside Out, Michael Giacchino is a name today’s animation fans have come to adore. So it’s a positive sign for Disney’s Zootopia that the composer is on board the anthropomorphic buddy-comedy adventure, featuring the mismatched rookie cop Judy Hopps and con artist Nick Wilde. According to Disney, Giacchino is recording his score this week.
Director Byron Howard remarks, “In a world as vast as Zootopia, we needed someone who could deliver a score that can feel exotic and powerful, but also provide that same emotional intimacy. We tell stories with images, Michael tells stories with music. Zootopia is a massive film with deep emotional themes running throughout the story, and Michael was the perfect choice to bring the music of this extraordinary animal world to life.”
The composer adds, “There are flavors of world music sprinkled in everywhere. But at its core, the score always follows the emotional story of Hopps and Nick.”
Wondering what Universal has planned for its upcoming reboot of its venerable shared-universe monster franchises? In a new Variety feature, the folks in charge — executive producers Alex Kurtzman and Chris Morgan and Universal chair Donna Langley — unveil their plans. One film will be released each year starting with The Mummy, which starts shooting in 2016. Films featuring Dracula, Van Helsing, the Bride of Frankenstein, and the Wolfman will follow.
Kurtzman says, “We’re creating a mythology, so we’re looking at this canon and thinking, ‘What are the rules?’ What can we break and what are the ones that are untouchable? The idea is that we have a deep bench of brains to consult with about how their monster fits into our world as we go forward.”
Of the ten writers working on the mega-franchise, each “has been assigned a monster to oversee.”
Morgan describes the project as a dark alternative to Marvel’s superhero films: “Heroes tend to be perfect, but most people in an audience aren’t ever going to know what it’s like to be the smartest, strongest or fastest person alive. But there’s a darkness inside everybody. And everyone wants to be able to turn a curse into empowerment. The monsters have been in the shadows, and now it’s time to bring them out into the light.”
The Merlin Saga
No stranger to big-screen heroic fantasy, the Oscar-winning The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit screenwriter Philippa Boyens has just signed on to script Disney’s adaptation of author T.A. Barron’s twelve-volume young-adult novel series The Merlin Saga. About the early days of King Arthur’s right-hand wizard, the films will be produced by Life of Pi‘s Gil Netter. This marks the first time that Boyens has not worked with Peter Jackson, as she’s also scripted the director’s King Kong and The Lovely Bones.
Images Credits: Marvel, Universal, Penguin Group USA
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