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Super Heroes Assemble!
SUPER HEROES ASEMBLE!!!!!!!!!
Hollywood can't get enough of superhero movies. So much so that even the least popular characters like Ant Man and Iron Fist, to name a few, are actually being considered for their own movies. I mean I could understand why Hollywood would want to see a Superman or Spider-Man movie, as those are big name characters, but Ant Man? Seriously? Oh well, I guess like Westerns used to be, Hollywood wants to try to make as many of them as humanly possible until the genre dies. Not saying Westerns are dead by any means, but you'll notice there's not quite as many as there used to be though. It would seem superhero movies in general are following the rout. Sure, it seems like for now there's almost an overload of superhero movies, but I suspect that ratio will reduce significantly once Hollywood pretty much explores every possible original concept that a super hero film can reasonably offer.
Anyway, what you'll find in this hub is that I'll be basically telling you about all the allegedly planned super hero films in development, even as we speak. I'll pretty much be telling you the pros and cons to each film in development, as well as a brief synopsis with some rumored and confirmed information about the movies. Take in mind, this is five part series that I plan on writing so if I don't mention any superhero film that you might have heard of being released, then it's probably because it's being saved for one of the next chapters.
Another thing I would like to point out is that part 4 and 5 will be different from the other three. For you see, I plan on releasing a top ten list on both four and five that will tell you my top rated superhero movies and my top ten least favorite ones. Anyway, I hope you all enjoy reading this five part miniseries. Now let's get down to brass taxes here folks.
Take in mind, some of these films are still in production so release dates are subject to change or become terminated at anytime. Please check your local listings for more details.
The Marvel Comics Explosion!
If there's one comic book company that's reaping the benefits of this new craze in superhero movies, then it's certainly Marvel. Since their big corporate merger with Disney, Marvel seems be in full force with a plethora of superhero movies. Even going so far as to plan the very first superhero crossover movie, "The Avengers." However, is Marvel getting too carried with their attempt to capitalize on this new superhero genre being such a hot commodity right now? Or are they merely just striking now while the iron is still hot? Maybe a little bit of both.
When Marvel first released their characters onto the big screen, most of them didn't do that well. Ranging from the horrendous "Captain America (1990)" to the straight to video low budget "Fantastic Four" film (pre-Jessica Alba one). It wasn't until around the time when "Blade" came out, that fans were finally treated to a decent Marvel superhero film. Thus, getting the ball rolling for other Marvel characters to get their own cinematic debuts like "Spider-Man" and the "X-Men." Although not every Marvel film since then has always been well received through either via box office or critics, but some of them actually turned out to be some of the better films of the genre.
However, it wasn't until 2008 when Marvel decided to produce their own movies, instead of relying on third party studios like Sony and Fox to make their films. That's when audiences were treated to such films as "Iron Man" and "The Incredible Hulk." Although "The Incredible Hulk" had mixed reviews, "Iron Man" alone proved to be successful enough for Marvel to actually consider making more movies. Now, with Disney backing up Marvel financially, it seems like the possibilities are endless now for Marvel. As even one of Disney execs was quoted as to saying they wanted to help exploit the Marvel brand as much as possible. With the amount of movies Marvel has being planned, it looks like they're doing just that.
Captain America: The First Avenger
Captain America/Steve Rogers: Chris Evans
Red Skull/Johann Schmidt: Hugo Weaving
Peggy Carter: Hayley Atwell
Nick Fury: Samuel L. Jackson
James 'Bucky' Barnes: Sebastian Stan
Arnim Zola: Toby Jones
Synopsis: Based on the Marvel Comics character from World War II. A brave, yet mild-mannered young soldier named Steve Rogers, volunteers to undergo a series of experiments for a US army Super Soldier program. The military succeeds in transforming him into a human weapon, but quickly decide that their Super Soldier is far too expensive a creation to risk in combat. So, they decide to put him to use as an army celebrity and parade him across Europe to boost morale by performing in USO shows for American troops. He is even given a costume that bear the colors of Old Glory for the stage. Then, when a Nazi plot reveals itself Rogers must rise up and and become the First Avenger, in order to save his country. Steve Rogers becomes Captain America and he earns his way into the hearts and souls of every American, bringing hope and justice to a war-weary nation. Later, during a mission to Germany to stop his archenemy - The Red Skull, from launching rockets at the allies, Captain America sacrifices himself and winds up frozen in ice for almost six decades! Revived, Steve Rogers now must join forces with new heroes and become an Avenger of the modern age.
Pros: Ever since Marvel has been producing their own movies, it seems like they're on a pretty good roll thus far. Sure, they're sequels could have been a lot better (i.e. "The Incredible Hulk" being a quasi sequel to Ang's "Hulk, and "Iron Man 2"), but they've done excellent work when it comes to establishing marquee franchise type characters. Plus, I'm sure with Disney hyping the hell out of this movie, Captain America should be a huge hit at the box office.
On another bright note, having a guy like Hugo Weaving doesn't hurt their chances either, as he was perfectly cast as the villain, Red Skull. Sure, not all his films were that great like the last two "Matrix" films, but he still owned every part he ever played. Like Daniel Day-Lewis in "There Will Be Blood" and "Gangs of New York", Hugo Weaving just seems to make a natural bad guy in any movie he plays. Thus, I can't wait to see how he'll portray Red Skull in this film.
Cons: Although I could probably write entire hub pointing out every possible detail about why Captain America wouldn't make such a great movie, I'll try to be as brief as I can. One obviously being the costume of Captain America. Don't get me wrong, I understand they'll need to keep the movie costume as reasonably close as possible to the comic book, so fans won't b**** about it. However, looking at this from a logical standpoint and knowing that originally Captain America was sent in on routine missions, during WWII, to take on Nazis. Wouldn't his costume make him an easy target then? I understand he has an indestructible bullet proof shield, but come on. You can't expect that same said shield to cover him if a bomb were launched at him, can you? Seriously folks, there's a reason why real life soldiers wear camouflage. Therefore, do you honestly think any American soldier, back in WWII, would be stupid enough to want to follow some jerk in a brightly colored costume that resembles a flag? I mean would you follow a guy that was that big of a human target? Or would you rather follow a guy that wears camouflage too, and keep invisible to the enemy to give you a good strategic advantage. I'll let you be the judge of that one.
Then if that not be all, what about his fan base? As far as I know, Captain America has never had a huge fan base. Sure, you can argue that neither did "The Crow" or "Blade", but there's a few key differences there. One, even though both those films didn't have a huge comic book fan base either, that still doesn't diminish the broad appeal both characters have. For you see, "The Crow" and "Blade" are very dark characters entrenched with dark fantasy type mythology. Thus, you'd have folks like the goths, fantasy fans, monster movie fans, as well as comic book fans who were aching to see these films. In the case for "Blade", it didn't hurt to even cast a big name actor at the time for the lead in Wesley Snipes. As for "The Crow", well lets just say that Brandon Lee's death during the shooting gave the film that much more publicity than they ever could have hoped for. Now, let's take a look at Captain America again...what's his appeal outside his normal fan base?
What hurts Captain America even more is that they failed to land a big name for this character to play him. Don't get me wrong, I like Chris Evans and I think he did a great Johnny Storm in "Fantastic Four", but lets be real for a minute. He's not a marquee name out there and neither is his character, Captain America. Cap isn't like Superman or Spider-Man where they can reasonably get away with casting a less than marquee actor to get away with it. No, Captain America needed a big name to draw in the crowds outside of Disney's influence on the media.
I know some of you can argue about how "Iron Man" didn't need a big name, but again there's another difference. Iron Man has a cool armor, gadgets and hot chicks around him to go along with his unique personality. For you see, Tony Stark isn't your typical superhero where he's some dark and loathing, or even some angst ridden character. No, he's the first big screen superhero to be portrayed as one that's not only confident in who he is, but one that might actually be a lot cooler when he's not in costume. That in itself is highly original. What does Cap bring to the table? Well, he's essentially an all American boyscout like Superman, minus the awesome powers as Steve Rogers has none. Oh and he's rumored to have his famous teenage sidekick Bucky Barnes with him on this adventure as well. Gee, if I was an American soldier right now, I'd certainly follow some jerk in a brightly colored American flag costume along with his teenage sidekick, Bucky, wouldn't you? After all, Cap is a real American hero that fights for the good old American way! Of course, I'm being sarcastic when I say that.
Final Thoughts: I'm sure it'll do reasonably well at the box office providing Marvel doesn't try to bog down the plot with too many Avengers' references throughout the film (i.e. "Iron Man 2"), and just focus on developing the character. Although I do have serious doubts about this movie, I'm sure Marvel and Disney understand that if they want to make cinematic gold with the upcoming "Avengers" movie, then they can't possibly afford to drop the ball now.
Thor: Chris Hemsworth
Odin: Anthony Hopkins
Jane Foster: Natalie Portman
Loki: Tom Hiddleston
Synopsis: Marvel Studios expands its film universe with a new type of superhero: THOR. This epic adventure spans the Marvel Universe; from present day Earth to the realm of Asgard. At the center of the story is The Mighty Thor, a powerful but arrogant warrior whose reckless actions reignite an ancient war. Thor is cast down to Earth and forced to live among humans as punishment. Once here, Thor learns what it takes to be a true hero when the most dangerous villain of his world sends the darkest forces of Asgard to invade Earth. Kenneth Branagh directs this fantasy epic which stars Australian actor Chris Hemsworth as the ancient Norse god, Tom Hiddleston as his evil brother Loki, Natalie Portman as Jane Foster, a young woman who befriends Thor on Earth, and Anthony Hopkins as Odin, Thor's father and king of Asgard. Expect to see agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., previously seen in ''Iron Man,'' to make an appearance, further forshadowing the coming of The Avengers!
Pros: Although I will admit, I was highly skeptical about this film when I first heard about it. However, the more and more I read up about what exactly Marvel has planned for it, it gives me that much more hope that we might actually see something not only great but original, within a genre that's already starting to show it's flaws. Indeed, I think Thor's biggest attraction is that it seems to cleverly tie in Norse mythology into sci-fi and superhero genre into one so gradually, that it seems so incredibly unique.
Even the casting thus far seems to be in order. Although Chris Hemsworth is hardly a marquee name out there, but he doesn't have to be. Not when you have an all star cast supporting you like Natalie Portman and Anthony Hopkins, to name a few. Plus, the entire concept of Thor might actually do well among critics to it's originality content. Seriously, how many comic book characters do you know tie in ancient mythology into modern culture as well as Thor?
If that wasn't enough, can I honestly tell you how perfectly casted Anthony Hopkins is as Odin? Having a larger than life actor portray a Norse God is a great idea and a perfect fit. Almost similar to how Warner Bros. were lucky enough to get Marlon Brando to play Superman's father. Although he mispronounced Krypton, it was still worth every penny they paid him to be in the movie.
Cons: Although this film does show a lot of promise, like all blockbusters there's so many ways this could get screwed up. Even though I'm sure I have nothing to worry about with a Shakespearian type of director, in Kenneth Branagh, but they're still worth noting. One, being Marvel's obvious game plan to tie this into it's upcoming "Avengers" movie. Which is fine as long as they keep it subtle like the first Iron Man movie, then it should be fine. However, if it's overly obsessive like "Iron Man 2" was, then there's a strong chance Marvel could be shooting themselves in the foot on this one. As I could possibly see Thor turning out to be a trilogy if they play their cards right.
Another problem that this film could run into is how much special effects will it honestly need. I know that's a small gripe to consider, but it's not once you think about it. I always found stories that use a lot of special effects work extremely well, when the CGI serves and enhances elements within the story itself. However, if "Thor" relies too much on it and uses it as a cheap gimmick, then it might do well to impress the average movie goer to rake in at the box office. I just wouldn't expect it to get that many rave reviews.
Final Thoughts: Even though I could easily be wrong on this, I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that I think "Thor" is shaping up to possibly be one of the best superhero movies ever made.
The Wolverine (Updated 2)
Wolverine/Logan: Hugh Jackman
Synopsis: Wolverine travels to Japan to train with a samurai warrior.
Pros: Okay, the last Wolverine movie was kind of lame. The story line started off strong, but it kind of fell apart around the ending. Plus, I know not too many fans were too happy about how some their favorite Marvel mutants were portrayed through their cameos. Originally set to be directed by Bryan Singer, which was originally set a positive for this film. Now, it seems "X-Men Origins: Wolverine 2" may not even have that either. For you see, due to scheduling conflicts with Singer's Warner Bros. film, "Jack the Giant Killer", it turns out that he'll have to settle for a producing type role instead. Luckily though, Darren Aranofsky has just been hired to direct this movie. Therefore, there might be hope yet for this franchise.
Yep, as long Fox doesn't get too hands on with this guy, Darren should be able to give us a dark morbid story worthy of Wolverine's dark reputation.
Cons: Will fans support it? I know after the last movie, many fans weren't too happy with some of the changes to their favorite mutant cameo characters, so it'll be interesting to see if they support Wolverine this time. Plus, it seems in the last movie they literally threw everything but the kitchen sink at him, to peak fans interests. Therefore, what's left for them to be excited about?
Final Thoughts: With Darren Aranofsky directing this, along with Bryan Singer producing, we might have ourselves a winner here. Although a lot of fans weren't too happy about the last movie, so it'll be interesting if they come out and support this one....
Wade Wilson/Deadpool: Ryan Reynolds
Synopsis: Very little information is given out about this movie, but Fox and Marvel are shooting for a release sometime next year according to imdb. The story is essentially a reboot of the character, where this version Deadpool will have NOTHING to do with that one interpretation of the character back in "X-Men Origins: Wolverine." Confused? I'll gladly try to explain. No, Wolverine nor the other X-Men franchises are getting any kind of a reboot, just Deadpool. In fact, just pretend that this is entirely new character, and not the one you saw in "X-Men Origins: Wolverine." Where both just happen to have the EXACT same name. During the film, audiences will be introduced to Deadpool's full story about how he became the infamous Weapon XI, and how he became the deadly character that he is in the comics. Exploring his full origin story so to speak. As I said before, this is a reboot of Deadpool, and this time he'll be in his full on red and black costume. Saying smart a** remarks and talking off camera, where he'll literally talk to you, the audience during the movie.
Pros: Ryan Reynolds is a perfect fit for Deadpool, as his personality fits the character exactly. Plus, he did give us his word that he would hold Marvel and Fox to remain a hundred percent faithful to the comic book material. Sure, Jackman said the same thing about his Wolverine movie, but it's Ryan Reynolds we're talking about here. Not some one trick pony like Hugh Jackman is.
Cons: What really surprises me about fanboys sometimes is their inconsistency on their gripes and complaints. I see so many of them bicker over how it'll be confusing to see Chris Evans go from playing the Human Torch to Captain America in one film. Saying that fans and children will get confused, and claiming that each actor should only be allowed to play one superhero in a movie. Does that mean Stallone never should have made Rambo then after making Rocky? After all, what if movie fans get confused and wonder why the hell is a championship boxer fighting over in Vietnam? Won't fans get confused seeing Stallone portray two different characters? Seriously, it's freaking stupid. Yet I haven't heard one comic book fan complain about how confusing a reboot of Deadpool is. Won't that be a bit confusing? I know it won't be to comic book fans that go see the film. However, what about the average movie goer that doesn't keep track regularly of what comic book films are in production? Won't they be confused by it? After all, it's already been proven statistically that the majority of money superhero films make ARE NOT from comic book fans. Therefore, won't they be confused by this little reboot? Just a thought.
Final Thoughts: With very little information to go on, it's tough to say how well this film will do. I will say this though. If Marvel wants to stay true to the graphic nature of the character, my only advice to them is to go through the Kick-Ass method. Make a film for a reasonable amount of 50 million dollars, and that should allow for Fox to see not only a safe return on this, but a movie where they can also stay true to the character. If they do decide to spend any higher than that, then there going to have tone down the character to see a safe return. Something that I know most fans will not be too happy about.
X-Men: First Class (Updated 3)
Professor Charles Xavier: James McAvoy
Emma Frost: January Jones
Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto: Michael Fassbender
Hank McCoy/Beast: Nicholas Hoult
Mystique/Raven Darkholme: Jennifer Lawrence
Sean Cassidy/Banshee: Caleb Landry Jones
Alex Summers/Havoc: Lucas Till
Dr. Moira MacTaggert: Rose Byrne (rumored)
Azazel: Jason Flemyng
Sebastian Shaw: Kevin Bacon
Synopsis: Before Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr took the names Professor X and Magneto, they were two young men discovering their powers for the first time. Before they were archenemies, they were closest of friends, working together, with other Mutants (some familiar, some new), to stop the greatest threat the world has ever known. In the process, a rift between them opened, which began the eternal war between Magneto's Brotherhood and Professor X's X-MEN.
Pros: This could potentially go either way. Personally, I was skeptical when I first heard Bryan Singer wouldn't be directing this movie, due to scheduling conflicts, but after hearing that Mathew Vaughn would replace him, my faith was renewed in this film. Mathew Vaughn already proved he could do a great superhero film, when he made "Kick-Ass", so I can't wait to see how well he'll do directing "X-Men: First Class." Plus, it'll be kind of a relief to finally see an "X-Men" movie that isn't so heavily focused on Wolverine for once. As fans will finally be treated to a film that focuses more on the other characters instead.
Cons: No offense to Marvel and Fox, but how the hell are you going to base this movie off the first generation "X-Men" without screwing up the continuity established in the first "X-Men" film? For those that don't know, the original members of the X-Men in the comic books are as follows: Cyclops, Jean Grey/Marvel Girl, Beast, Iceman, and Angel. One big problem now, wasn't Iceman portrayed as a kid in the earlier "X-Men" movies? Therefore, that eliminates any possibility that he could be used in "X-Men: First Class", as he would be too young to be an X-Man around the time First Class takes place. Plus, Angel even admitted in the third movie that he was new to the X-Men, so that eliminates his character too. Thus, in order to keep from screwing up the continuity of the movies, they're going to have to come up with a whole new class of mutants to keep from contradicting themselves. Of course, will fans accept it though? Probably not. Although it will be fun to watch to see what Marvel does to remedy this problem.
Final Thoughts: This potentially could either revitalize "X-Men" franchise and spawn another sequel, or it could end up damning it for years to come. Where we may not see another X-Men movie again until someone decides to reboot it a few decades down the road.
Kick-Ass 2: Balls to the Wall
Dave Lizewski/Kick-Ass: Aaron Johnson
Mindy Macready/Hit-Girl: Chloe Grace Moretz (rumored)
Katie Deauxma: Lyndsy Fonseca
Chris D' Amico/Red Mist: Christopher Mintz-Plasse
Synopsis: Scheduled to be released sometime in 2012, Matthew Vaughn is coming back to direct this movie about a kid who one day decides what life would be like if someone just put on a costume and became a superhero. For no other reason than doing the right thing, Dave sets out on adventure to fight crime as the newly formed hero, Kick-Ass. Along the way meeting a young and very skilled Hit-Girl, as a series of copycats start to follow Dave's idea obsessively. Like "Deadpool" very little information is out right now about what the sequel will be about, nor who the villain(s) will be. What is certain is that Mark Miller is promoting the hell off the idea, as he claims any fan of the movie can find out what happens before the sequel by picking up a copy of CLINT.
However, I'm sure more information will be available the closer the movie gets to being released, as pre-production doesn't officially start until 2011, and won't be released until the following year after that. If I had to take a wild shot in the dark about what the sequel will be about, I would say it must have something to do with Red Mist, as many fans will probably remember the ending where it gets left open for a sequel with his character being heavily involved. I won't say what happened at the end with Red Mist, as I wouldn't want to ruin the ending for those that have yet to see the first movie. However, to quote Red Mist: "As a great man once said........(puts on a mask)...wait until they get a load of me."
Pros: Seeing as how Matthew Vaughn is coming back along with most of the cast, then I can't see how this film might fail. As long as Lionsgate continues giving Matthew and his writers full creative freedom, then I'm sure we'll see another great movie that kicks major a**.
Cons: As of right now, it's not confirmed yet whether or not Chloe Moretz will return. Which will be very sad if she doesn't, as she was definitely my favorite character in that movie. She almost stole the whole show from Aaron Johnson. And what other girl in Hollywood can you imagine pulling off a sweet, innocent and cute look while cursing like a sailor and killing off bad guys with ease? I certainly can't think of any, which is why I'll be so freaking p***ed if she's not back for the sequel.
Another thing worth considering here is that the first film was heavily funded by Matthew Vaughn's own money. Lionsgate merely handled the distribution of the film, but it was Matthew Vaughn's own money that made the film a reality. I'm sure Lionsgate will undoubtedly put in their own money into this now that the first film did so well. However, will Matthew Vaughn still retain creative control if that happens? After all, one of the reasons why he had that much control over the project was because he didn't have to answer to anyone about the film's budget, whereas "Kick-Ass 2: Balls to the Wall" he probably will.
Final Thoughts: As long Matthew Vaughn retains full creative control like the last movie, then I'm sure fans of the first movie will be in for helluva a treat. Oh and please bring back Chloe Moretz, as she literally IS Hit-Girl. Anyone else would just be lame by comparison if they recast her part. Kind of like if you were to cast anyone else to play the Joker, after Heath Ledger did such a masterful job of playing him. Therefore, please bring back Chloe Moretz, as it just wouldn't be the same without her.
Synopsis: As of right now, there's no official word on what this upcoming Marvel Studios film based on the Black Panther could be about. However, what is confirmed that Mark Bailey, documentary film maker of such films like "Pandemic: Facing AIDS" and "Ghost of Abu Ghraib", is signed on to write to the script.
Pros: At the risk of sounding racist here, I think "Black Panther" would have the minority viewers intrigued, as there really hasn't been too many minority superheroes portrayed on the big screen. Therefore, that might actually generate sells for the Black Panther, as his history is rich enough to garner his own solo movie respectively.
Cons: Like my doubts with "Ant-Man" and "Luke Cage", how popular is "Black Panther" exactly? Hell, most people don't even know who he is, as the term, "Black Panther", is often associated with the terrorist group back in the sixties; which was sort of a answer to the controversial Ku Klux Klan group. However, I won't delve into that, as that's another story for another time.
Final Thoughts: First of all, I apologize to anyone that was offended during this short portion of this hub, as I'm actually a minority myself. Therefore, I hope nobody deems my skepticism of this movie's possibility of making it big in the box office as a racial bashing. Something that shouldn't be a problem even if I wasn't a minority. However, I honestly don't see how Black Panther would translate onto the big screen. Maybe as a cable show on HBO probably, but I don't know about a movie. Then again, we'll have to wait and see....
Synopsis: A subtly maimed surgeon finds a new life when a wizard trains him to become the new Sorcerer Supreme of Earth.
Pros: Although it'll be a while before Marvel will get a chance to make this movie, and how it falls into Marvel's plans of releasing lesser known characters onto the big screen after "The Avengers." I personally think this film offers a lot of promise. Some of you may question my logic behind this, but please hear me out on this one. Even though "Dr. Strange" has never been a big name comic book character, that still doesn't diminish the fact that he has a lot of things going for him that could make him stand out from the other superheroes we've seen thus far in movies.
For one he's not scientifically based, nor is he even a traditional type of superhero that fights crime. Even his personality is different from the ones we've seen, as the character originally starts off as being an egotistical jerk to becoming a man that realizes what his true values in life are, after a serious accident that disables him. Who wouldn't be able to relate to that? Plus, he's the first and only superhero that I know of that uses magic. That in itself makes him highly original.
Plus, if that's not enough to convince you of this character's potential, then what about his broad appeal? Not only would the fantasy based stories of Dr. Strange appeal to the fans that followed him over the years, but I could also see it appealing to all the Wiccans, goths, fantasy fans, monster and horror fans alike, as "Dr. Strange" has always carried a dark and mysterious element about him.
Cons: Seeing as how Marvel wants to keep this film on a reasonably low budget like around 50 million, there's always a possibility that the casting may not be right since most of the money would have to go to the special effects. I know that's a lot of money for most people (like me), but not when it comes to block buster films. However, I think so far Marvel has done a great job in their casting of the films that have already been released, so I guess we'll have to wait and see.
Final Thoughts: As long as they can cast a decent enough actor to play Dr. Strange, then the film should be a surprise hit with many average movie goers.
Henry Pym/Ant-Man: Nathan Fillion (rumored)
Synopsis: Biochemist Dr. Hank Pym uses his latest discovery, a group of subatomic particles, to create a size-altering formula. Though his first self-test goes awry, he develops an instrument that helps him communicate with and control insects.
Pros: Well seeing as how Edgar Wright is already penned to direct this, I say that's one good thing going for this film. After all, he did do a great job directing "Shaun of the Dead" and "Hot Fuzz." However, unless the rumors about how Pixar might be involved in the production are true, after the Disney buyout of Marvel, then I can't really think of anything else that "Ant-Man" might have going for it.
Cons: Like Captain America, I can literally turn this into another hub by itself to tell you why "Ant-Man" is going to bomb, but I won't. Besides, "Ant-Man" isn't really worth the effort to me, but I will say this. How can you expect to make a great film out a character that's most famous for beating his wife? Seriously, outside of "The Avengers", Ant-Man is most known for his spousal abuse in the comics, so what possible appeal do you honestly think he has? Obviously, someone at Marvel does, but I sure as hell don't.
Final Thoughts: Although Edgar Wright is directing this, I still have my doubts. I just hope Marvel changes their mind and not even bother making this film. Ant-Man was always kind of lame anyway, so I'm sure not many fans out there wouldn't mind if Marvel scrapped this idea.
Fantastic Four Reboot
Synopsis: Since Fox and Marvel didn't make the kind of money they were hoping for with the last "Fantastic Four" movie, they opted to reboot it. Promising a somewhat darker take on the series. Like the one that came out back in 2005, this film promises to be an origin story where four people go up into space and get infused with super powers. Whether or not Dr. Doom will be the villain again is unknown, at this time.
Pros: On the one hand, it means they finally have a chance to get it right and not screw it up again. Don't get me wrong, I actually liked the first "Fantastic Four (2005)" movie, but the "Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer" was just so depressing and boring that I almost wanted to kill myself at the end of the movie. Seriously, over two thirds of the movie often involves the four bickering amongst each other like children.
Cons: If by dark Marvel means more action and less camp when it comes to the villains, then I'm all for it. However, if we're talking like "Batman" type dark, then I think they should quit now while they're ahead.
Final Thoughts: I'm a firm believer that not all comic books, cartoons, and/or T.V. shows would make great movies, and I'm afraid "Fantastic Four" might be one of them. Sure, the first movie was pretty good, but I'd hardly put it up there with "The Dark Knight" or any of the first two "Superman" films. Therefore, I don't think there is a way they could make a better origin story than what they did back in 2005, but I could be wrong though.
Synopsis: Scheduled for release around 2012, the film is set to retell the origin story of how Matt Murdock lost his sight, due to a chemical accident as a child. Leaving him blind, but gaining sonar vision that allows him to see things like a bat. After the murder of his father, he dons the disguise of Daredevil as he punishes criminals that dare to start trouble in New York City; otherwise known to him as "Hell's Kitchen."
Pros: To be perfectly honest, I think the reason why the last movie didn't so well was because it wasn't anywhere near as dark as it should have been. Seriously, unlike "Fantastic Four", "Daredevil" is a very dark character. Therefore, if anyone needs a dark treatment, it's Daredevil. Don't get me wrong, I'm not suggesting the next film should be rated "R" or anything like that. A hard "pg-13" approach can work just as well, as "The Dark Knight" proved. Thus, if Fox was serious about making the reboot a lot darker and grittier, then I'm all for it, as it sounds like we'll finally see a Daredevil film that the character richly deserves.
Cons: Well seeing as how the last film was so freaking bad, I don't see how the reboot could possibly be any worse. However, if the new director and writers fall into the same trap as the last movie with cheesy dialogue and unrealistic story developments, then it's going to epically fail again.
Final Thoughts: Although I love Ben Affleck as an actor, he wasn't right for the role of Daredevil to quite honest. No, for this part they need an actor that can portray Daredevil right. Someone like Gerard Butler or Sam Worthington might do, but we'll have to wait and see.
Iron Fist/Daniel Rand: Ray Park (rumored)
Synopsis: This basically serves as an origin story behind the famous Marvel legend, Iron Fist. Unlike most super heroes who's powers come from some mystical arts, some sci-fi based origin, or they're just freaking born with them. No, Iron Fist's powers generate from his advanced studies in Ki and Martial Arts.
Daniel Rand was born in New York City, the son of American businessman Wendell Rand, a wealthy entrepreneur who discovered the mystical city of K'un-L'un as a young boy. During his time in K'un L'un, Wendell saved the life of the city's ruler, Lord Tuan, and was adopted as Tuan's son. However, Wendell eventually left K'un L'un and became a wealthy entrepreneur in the United States. He married socialite Heather Duncan and had a child, Daniel. When Daniel was nine, Wendell organized an expedition to again seek out K'un L'un, taking his wife Heather, his business partner Harold Meachum, and Daniel. During the journey up the mountain, Daniel slipped off the path, his tie-rope taking his mother and father with him. Meachum, who also loved Heather, forced Wendell to plunge to his death but offered to rescue Heather and Daniel. She rejected his help, preferring to journey without him or die.
Heather and Daniel come across a makeshift bridge that appears out of nowhere and are attacked by a pack of wolves. Heather throws herself on the wolves to save Daniel and is killed even as archers from K'un L'un attempt to save her. The archers take the grieving Daniel to see Yü-Ti, the hooded ruler of K'un L'un. When Daniel expresses his desire for vengeance, Yü-Ti apprentices him to Lei Kung, the Thunderer, who teaches him the martial arts.
Daniel proves to be the most gifted of Lei Kung's students. Rand conditions his fists by plunging them into buckets of sand, gravel and rock to toughen them. At 19, Daniel is given the chance to attain the power of the Iron Fist by fighting and defeating the dragon known as Shou-Lao the Undying, which guarded the molten heart that had been torn from its body. During the battle, Daniel throws himself against the scar of Shou-Lao, which burns a dragon tattoo into his chest. Having killed Shou-Lao, he enters its cave and plunges his fists into a brazier containing the creature's molten heart, emerging with the power of the Iron Fist. It is later revealed that there have been many Iron Fists before Daniel, making him the modern member of a long lineage of Iron Fists.
Pros: As long as Marvel stays true to their word to keep this movie under their project 50 million dollar price tag, then I don't see how this can be too big of a risk. As I'm sure with Disney backing up the advertising, then "Iron Fist" should be able to break even, at least.
Cons: I don't care what anyone says about Ray Park, but he's so over rated as an actor. Seriously, what has that guy done exactly? Did a few stunts in movies and that's it? You'll notice he never said a freaking word in all the films he's most known for. Hell, I think the most lines I saw that guy have were like two in the first "X-Men" movie. Therefore, is Marvel actually serious about giving this guy a chance to star in his own movie? I hope not, as I'd rather they got someone who can act verbally first, then worry about training him in the martial arts; versus the other way around.
Final Thoughts: As long as Marvel keeps this film within their fifty million dollar budget range, then "Iron Fist" should do alright. Anything more than that will be an awfully big risk on such a low level unknown character.
The Amazing Spider-Man (Updated 8)
Spider-Man/Peter Parker: Andrew Garfield
Gwen Stacy: Emma Stone
Dr. Curt Connors/The Lizard: Rhys Ifans
Uncle Ben: Martin Sheen
May Parker: Sally Field
George Stacy: Denis Leary
Nels Van Adder/Proto-Goblin: Irrfan Khan
Flash Thompson: Chris Zylka
Synopsis: This is essentially a reboot of the character, as it retells Peter Parker's story of how he was bitten by a radioactive spider, and given the powers of a man size spider. What at first seems like a dream come true for him, Peter soon learns that with great power comes great responsibility; when he neglectfully decides not to help to stop a burglar from robbing a fight promoter, out of spite since the promoter cheated him. Unfortunately, this ultimately leads to the untimely demise of his Uncle Ben, as Peter's lack of responsibility cost's him his Uncle's life. Hence, out of guilt for his Uncle Ben's death, Peter takes up the identity of Spider-Man to fight crime in the mean streets of New York City. A city where he is both loved and revered, but he's also hated and despised by others.
New director Marc Webb promises this to be a more contemporary reboot of the character, where Peter won't be growing up and graduating off into college in this film. No, Marvel and Sony plan on keeping Spidey in high school this time for an entire trilogy, where they promise to explore more of the human factor in Spider-Man. Oh and the reboot is also geared to be filmed in 3-D too for good measure.
Pros: I won't go into too much detail, since I've been over this reboot before. However, I'll try to summarize my thoughts the best I can. With this reboot it's a chance to get it right this time. To create a Spider-Man movie that's a hundred percent faithful to the original comics. No more organic web shooters, as now Sony has a chance to portray a scientific side to Peter Parker where it shows him inventing his own web fluids in a lab. Something that wasn't in the previous trilogy.
Hopefully, with Sony announcing that they'll do a reboot of Spider-Man, it'll also mean the end of the so called Venom movie that was in production. As Marvel and Sony royally messed up that character in "Spider-Man 3" so much, that any kind of movie about that character would bomb unless it was damn near perfect. However, now that Spider-Man gets a reboot, maybe that means in a future sequel, we'll finally be treated to the sinister villain portrayal of Venom the way he was always meant to be.
Cons: Say what you want about Sam Raimi's version of Spider-Man, but I actually thought he did a damn good job with it. Sure, he made quite a few changes to some of the mythology of the character, but they weren't enough to change completely who the character was. Plus, I honestly can't see too many young actors that can pull off Peter Parker and Spider-Man anywhere near as well as Tobey Maguire did.
Final Thoughts: For more on my thoughts on this reboot, then please refer to my "Sony is rebooting Spider-Man" hub. I guess we'll have to wait and see how well this movie turns out. Personally, I don't see how a franchise that earns over a few billion dollars needs a reboot, but it's their call.
Nick Fury: Samuel L. Jackson
Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow: Scarlett Johansson (rumored)
Agent Phil Coulson: Clark Gregg (rumored)
Synopsis: A daring amateur boxer from Hells Kitchen is recruited by the Army for some top-secret assignments. He soon is promoted to captain, where he puts together the First Attack Squad, a group of elite soldiers who carry out elite missions.
Pros: Seeing as how this movie isn't scheduled to be in production until after "The Avengers" movie, and how Marvel plans to conveniently tie in SHIELDS name with almost all their in house production movies, then it looks like this film is bound to be a success due to the hype around it.
Cons: As much of a fan I am of Samuel L. Jackson's work, the sad reality is that he's not a great lead actor. A great supporting actor, but not a lead one. As he's shown in other films such as "Shaft" and "Snakes on the Plane", he tends to overact a lot when casted as the lead in any movie he's starring in.
Don't get me wrong, Samuel's "in your face" type of attitude works great in small doses, where he's the supporting actor like in "Pulp Fiction" or "Iron Man 2." However, when your forced to watch him carry a movie on his own with the same attitude, it often comes off as cliché and annoying.
Final Thoughts: Even though imdb has this listed to come out in 2012, I seriously doubt it will. Considering the fact, that I can imagine Marvel wouldn't want to release this film during the same year as "The Avengers" movie. Plus, since it sounds like this film takes place before "The Avengers" and "Iron Man", then I don't see why Marvel wouldn't want to try to sell it the following year as a spin off/prequel to "The Avengers."
Luke Cage (Update 1)
Luke Cage: Tyrese Gibson
Synopsis: A wrongly convicted man, escaping from prison after gaining superhuman strength and endurance, becomes a superhero mercenary.
Pros: Well Marvel does plan on keep this film under budget on a strict fifty million dollar tag, so I'm sure it won't be too big of a risk.
Cons: Why is Marvel making this? I mean I could understand Dr. Strange or even the thought of bringing Iron Fist to the big screen. But Luke Cage? He's never been a big name within the Marvel world and to quite honest unless they changed his look since I stopped reading comics, then he looks like a freaking reject out of a bad seventies movie.
It looks like this film is confirmed to come out next year after all, and it stars over hyped actor, Tyrese Gibson. (shivers)
Final Thoughts: Well I would tell Marvel not to bother making this film at all, as they already have enough to worry about with "Thor" and "Captain America: First Avenger" coming out next year. However, as I stated earlier, it looks like they're striking while iron is hot....sad.
Iron Man 3 (Update 1)
Tony Stark/Iron Man: Robert Downey Jr.
Pepper Potts: Gwyneth Paltrow (rumored)
Synopsis: Although there's no official word as of yet about there being a possible "Iron Man 3", it's said that Jon Favreau will not be coming back to helm the third movie. This was just recently confirmed, according to various sources. It's undetermined whether or not if Jon is leaving due to financial reasons or creative differences with Marvel Studios, or perhaps both, but what is certain is that he will not be coming back to direct another sequel.
Pros: If Robert Downey Jr. and the rest of the cast comeback, then I'm sure the next "Iron Man" movie will be a smashing success.
Cons: Without Jon Favreau directing this, I don't see how the third movie will be any good unless they get another top notch director. For those of you, who say that a director is irrelevant when it comes to a movie, I dare you to say that after watching the first two Terminator films under James Cameron, then watch the third movie, "Terminator: Rise of the Machines", and you tell me you can't see a difference in quality of a story line. Seriously, an actor can really do so much for a movie but unless your Johnny Depp, then your movie is doomed for failure if you have a director that doesn't know what he/she is doing.
Final Thoughts: I honestly lost all hope for the third movie after hearing about the loss of Jon Favreau, as I can't see any reason why Marvel Studios should make a movie without him. However, I've been wrong before, so I guess we'll have to wait and see.
Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (Updated 2)
Ghost Rider/Johnny Blaze: Nicolas Cage
Blackout: Johnny Whitworth
Nadya: Violante Placido
The Devil: Ciarán Hinds
Synopsis: Set ten years after the events of the first movie, Ghost Rider continues riding along the road to punish those that dare to hurt others for their own desires and needs. While battling the dark creatures of the underworld.
Pros: Even though little is yet confirmed or denied about this movie, Marvel promises that this new sequel will be considerably darker than the previous film. Which fits perfectly with the nature of the character, as I felt that was one of the weaker points about the first movie.
Plus, having a seasoned actor like Nicolas Cage coming back is always a good thing. Originally it was thought that he wouldn't be returning for this movie, due to scheduling conflicts involving his next "National Treasure" movie. However, it seems Mr. Cage was able to clear up just enough of his schedule to somehow make it work, and I couldn't be happier.
Cons: There's a lot of ways this movie could get screwed up. Either through bad casting, a bad choice in director, or even the script could be bad.
Final Thoughts: As long as they stay true to the nature of the character, then the movie should be fine. Besides, "The Dark Knight" already proved you can make a dark "pg-13" movie, so I see no problems with why "Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance" can't do the same.
Synopsis: Nothing is confirmed or denied yet about what this film could possibly be about. Other than the fact that Avi Arad has agreed to produce the film, and that Stan Lee will make his trademark cameo appearance in it. Although some rumors suggest that the film takes place sometime after "Spider-Man 3", as sort of a spin off of the character. While others suggest it's a reboot of Venom entirely, showing viewers his full origin story.
Pros: To be honest, I think with the Spider-Man reboot currently in production, I doubt seriously this film gets made. However, just for the sake of argument, we'll assume they are going to go through with it. The only way I could see this film working is if it were played off as a complete reboot of the character. Hell, they're rebooting Spidey anyway, so why not? Maybe, show how Spider-Man gets the symbiotic suit in more elaborate detail this time, than the crappy meteor falling out of the sky bit that happened in "Spider-Man 3." And have the entire film played through Venom's point of view where he stalks Spider-Man in "Predator" like fashion. Although I doubt seriously Sony and Marvel would go for this idea, but I think it would work. Plus, it would give it a unique feel that would make it stand out within the genre itself.
Cons: I honestly don't see how Venom would work on the big screen. Sure, if Sony/Marvel portrayed him correctly in "Spider-Man 3", then I would say it has a very good chance. However, since they literally destroyed Venom in the last Spidey flick, most average movie fans will probably ask why are they making a film about such a weak villain? Even most critics felt Venom was a weak villain.
Final Thoughts: However to those true comic books fans or ex ones like me, we all know
that's not true. Venom wasn't a weak villain in the comics. Venom essentially had all of Spider-Man's powers enhanced, without any of his morals. Plus, he even had powers that Spidey didn't have like his ability to camouflage himself, form razor sharp blades with the symbiote, and shape shifting abilities as well. If that wasn't bad enough, he was the only villain that could block out Spider-Man's spider senses. Hence, that's one of the many reasons why Venom was such a deadly enemy in the comics. However, most critics and fans didn't see that, so I doubt any kind of movie will be well received. As I'm sure many critics and average movie fans would bash it without even giving it a chance to breath. That's why I think if Marvel really wants to reboot the character, they need to do it in this new Spider-Man reboot series. Not necessarily in the first movie, but a sequel perhaps to the planned Spider-Man reboot?
Cloak and Dagger
Synopsis: As it turns out, Marvel Studios plans on not only launching some of their characters onto the big screen, but they also plan on using their less popular characters for TV shows. Set to be released on ABC Family, the series will be based on Marvel Comics' "Cloak and Dagger." A story of two runaway teens, whom have their latent mutants powers awaken when a heroine dealer experimented on them. Cloak has the ability enshroud criminals inside his cloak, where they're banished inside another dimension full of darkness and despair, within himself. Dagger, on the other hand, has the unique ability forming and controlling blades of light.
Marvel Studios has claimed that the continuity of their TV series will be completely separate from their film continuity, so don't expect to hear or see any cameos from any characters you might have seen in any of the Marvel big budget movies.
Pros: Believe it or not, I think this show has a lot of untapped potential. After seeing the success of "Smallville", this show might be just as good if not better. I know some comic book fans may condemn me for saying that, but lets go over the facts of this first. One the show will feature a very young duo of teenagers, where Dagger is a privileged girl that's sixteen, and Cloak is a poor street kid who's seventeen. That right there might appeal to a lot of younger audiences, as they'll not only be young superheros, but they'll also have to deal with everyday normal teen problems like peer pressure, drugs, hormones and growing up. Something that might be highly relatable to a lot of teenagers. Think "Buffy the Vampire Slayer", as they did a wonderful job making her character having to deal with the typical high school drama along with the supernatural slaying. Who's to say "Cloak and Dagger" might not have that same potential.
Cons: The only way I can see this series failing is if Disney/ABC Family somehow turns it into another "Hanna Montana" version of superheros, where every episodes tries to have a happy ending. That would be the kiss of death on this series.
Final Thoughts: It could do very well if this series is handled correctly, and it might even open the door for Marvel's other lesser tier set of characters to have their own shows if it's a hit. In fact, Marvel has been looking into having "The Punisher" have his own cable show for quite sometime. Therefore, if this show becomes a hit, then we might get a cable "Punisher" show soon along with others...
The Incredible Hulk 2
Synopsis: As of right now, there's no official word on a sequel for this franchise. The only thing that's been confirmed thus far, it's that Marvel Studios would love to make a sequel to the last movie, "The Incredible Hulk", someday but since the last movie didn't make as much money as they hoped, it looks like it might be a while before anything is confirmed about this one. Sure, many fans blame it on the fact that they believe the poorly received "Hulk" movie cast a shroud of doubt over it's quasi sequel, resulting in poor box office revenue. Sadly, the reality is that unless "The Avengers" film becomes a huge hit, then I doubt seriously we'll see another sequel to this franchise.
However, this isn't loss for you "Hulk" fans out there, as it seems Marvel Studios not only plans to launch a lot of their properties on the big screen, but the television screen as well. The Hulk being one of those properties, as ABC plans on launching a live action TV series based on the jolly green behemoth. No official word is out yet whether or not ABC will incorporate the CGI method to animate the Hulk in the TV series, as it's been done in the previous feature big screen films. Nor is there any word if the show will be similar to how the original TV show was back in the day.
Unfortunately, the only official word I have right now, it's that the continuity between the films and the TV show will be completely separate. Meaning that if they ever decide to make another sequel to the Hulk franchise, after "The Avengers", then anything that happens in the films will not affect the continuity of ABC's live action TV show, nor will anything that happens in the show affect what goes on in any future "Hulk" film.
Cons: I think if they did make another "Hulk" film, then it might be a huge mistake. One hubber (Satomko) had this to say:
"I think Norton was done wrong by this switch,and it makes The Hulk look the most troubled of all the Marvel franchises because they're changing leads (both male and female) every time along with directors. That doesn't give fans, casual movie-goers, or investors much confidence that all things Hulk are being handled rightly."
I couldn't agree with this statement more. What makes this even worse though is that they're even going to change the CGI look AGAIN for "The Avengers." I'm sorry...but isn't "The Incredible Hulk" supposed to be in the same continuity as the rest of the Marvel films? Therefore, why change the look of the actual Hulk character himself? I mean he's a CGI character anyway, so what difference does it make to change his appearance every time you get a new Bruce Banner? Oh well, I guess we'll have to wait and see how it turns out.
Pros: Well if "The Avengers" movie becomes a huge hit.....emphasize the word..IF, and fans demand another Hulk movie bad enough, then I'm sure we might just see another Hulk movie. Who knows, they did leave room for a sequel involving The Leader, around the end of the last movie. Therefore, that might be an interesting premise alone for any director or actor to try to follow up on.
Final Thoughts: After the mild success of the last two movies, I doubt seriously we'll see another Hulk movie again, as the TV show might have to do for now. Will the new TV series be anywhere near as good as the original? I don't know. Only time will tell on that one.
The Avengers (Updated 1)
Tony Stark/Iron Man: Robert Downey Jr.
Steve Rogers/Captain America: Chris Evans
Thor: Chris Hemsworth
Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow: Scarlett Johansson
Nick Fury: Samuel L. Jackson
Bruce Banner: Mark Ruffalo
Hawkeye/Clint Barton: Jeremy Renner
Hulk (voice): Lou Ferrigno (rumored)
Col. James 'Rhodey' Rhodes/War Machine: Don Cheadle (rumored)
Agent Phil Coulson: Clark Gregg (rumored)
Loki: Tom Hiddleston
Synopsis: So far very little is known about the plot for the Avengers story, or even who the villain might be that's strong enough for them to warrant a secret government agency like SHIELD to recruit all these superheroes. However, we'll have to wait and see. Some fans might be happy to know that Joss Whedon is not only directing this film, but he's also one of the writers of it as well.
Some rumors are that Hulk might be used as a villain for the Avengers to try and stop, while Hulk goes off on his rampage through the city. While others suggest Hulk will actually be a member of the Avengers teaming up with the likes of Thor, Captain America, Iron Man and others to stop an even greater threat. What that threat is, I'm not exactly sure. Although according to imdb, the infamous Thor villain, Loki, is attached to this film as well. Maybe he might be the devious mastermind that takes on the Avengers. Or perhaps use Hulk as a puppet to battle the Avengers, then have the Hulk realize he's being used and helps them attack Loki. I could be wrong, but it's possible. I know one thing for sure, it'll be interesting to see what they do with this film.
Pros: One thing going for this movie will obviously be the hype surrounding it, as it's the first big budget superhero movie that will have various characters team up from different franchises. If this succeeds, Marvel will look like freaking geniuses. Reaping the awards of the latest superhero craze, while leaving D.C. Comics in the dust as they try to imitate their success if this works.
Cons: As much as Marvel has to gain if this movie ends up being a hit, it has just as much if not more to lose on this movie as well. As this movie could still potentially be a flop too if it's not handled correctly and if it does, then how will that affect the other characters that were established in solo movies? Sure, it's easy to speculate how there will be sequels to Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, and Hulk if this film works out. However, what if it doesn't? Will audiences even be willing to see solo sequels of these movies again if the Avengers movie bombs? It's a pretty big risk if you ask me. One I'm glad I don't have to worry about but then again, that's probably why I'm not a director in Hollywood. As anyone in show business will tell you, every movie is a gamble to some degree.
Final Thoughts: This movie is either going to be a huge hit or it's going to be an epic bomb. There will be no in between status for this film.