Movie News

Ron Howard steps aboard ‘Star Wars’ Han Solo spinoff

Star Wars is more popular now than ever. With the current trend of cinematic world building, moviegoers have been coming out in mass not only to see the main episodic installments but also to support the new standalone entries. If you don’t think so, see last year’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which grossed more than a billion dollars worldwide.

With that kind of financial support from fans, the answer is an easy “Yes” to the question “Will they make another one?” In fact, the next spinoff set in a galaxy far, far away will center around a young Han Solo and is currently deep into principal photography. That’s the actual filming part for you not in the know.

Also for those of you not in the know, dynamic directing duo Phil Lord and Chris Miller (The LEGO Movie, 21 & 22 Jump Street) were in the midst of shooting the bloody thing from a script they co-wrote with Star Wars veteran Lawrence Kasdan when President of LucasFilm Kathleen Kennedy fired them. That news came two days ago and almost immediately LucasFilm had a shortlist of replacement directors.

Rumor had it that atop this shortlist was none other than Ron Howard (A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13, Rush). Well, it appears those rumors are true. As of today, The Hollywood Reporter is– well, reporting– that Howard has indeed landed the job as the new pilot for the Millennium Falcon. Principal photography is scheduled to continue for three-and-a-half more weeks with five weeks of reshoots planned.

The young Han Solo film features Alden Ehrenreich as the iconic space outlaw, Donald Glover as frenemy Lando Calrissian, and Woody Harrelson as Solo’s mentor. The film also stars Emilia Clarke and Thandie Newton. So far the release date has not been pushed back and is still slated for a May 25, 2018 release.

Thoughts

Howard is a safe bet for LucasFilm. At this point in the game, it’s apparent Kathleen Kennedy and company’s goal is salvaging what they’ve built with Lord and Miller. Howard is veteran and a consummate professional. He’ll be able to come in and get the job done without ruffling any proverbial feathers. Howard’s spent most of his life in the studio system and even won himself a couple of Oscars on different sides of the camera so he knows how to play ball.

Also, there’s a lot of speculation and hoopla being made about how exactly LucasFilm will credit the direction of this film and understandably so. This is, after all, an unprecedented moment in movies. If I had to put money on it, I’d say that Ron Howard will get the directing credit while Lord and Miller will get the directing credit.

Obviously there isn’t an example I can point to as to why I think this will be the case, but it kind of makes sense. Lord and Miller were fired from the project after all and Howard could go back during reshoots and change a lot of the pair’s original vision.

That’s just us, though. What do you all think about this? How should LucasFilm credit the direction on this film and what do you think about Ron Howard taking over? Sound off in the comments below! We want to hear from you.

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LucasFilm Fires Directors of ‘Star Wars’ Han Solo Spinoff Mid-Production

In yet another gut punch, Variety is reporting that President of LucasFilm Kathleen Kennedy has fired Directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller during the production of the currently untitled Han Solo spinoff film. The project started filming back in January and still has a few weeks left to go. Kennedy has stated that a new director will be announced shortly but no names were mentioned as possible replacements.

Originally, both parties were citing “creative differences” as the source of the split. However, Variety is now reporting that “A person with knowledge of the production” has come forward, saying the “chemistry” between the directors and producer was “never right.”

The source goes on to say that Lord and Miller also clashed with Lawrence Kasdan, their co-writer and executive producer on the film. After apparently being hired for their “vision and distinctive brand of filmmaking,” it appears neither of the head honchos behind the project were fans of the pair’s shooting style or the way they interacted with the actors.

Lord and Miller have carved out a pretty good spot for themselves inside the studio system by writing and directing such hits as The LEGO Movie and the rebooted 21 Jump Street movies.

Daniel Day-Lewis Retires From Acting

This is neither a drill nor a joke. Oscar-winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis is retiring from acting. According to Variety, Day-Lewis’ spokesperson 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.

At the age of 60, Daniel Day-Lewis leaves behind an unparalleled legacy. Not only was he nominated for five best actor Oscars, but the performer is currently the only person to win three. He first won back in 1989 for My Left Foot. His second win came off the heels of Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood in 2007. He most recently won for his portrayal of the sixteenth President of the United States in Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln.

The actor recently wrapped production on Phantom Thread, his second collaboration with Paul Thomas Anderson. Not much is known about the film other than it is a drama set in the world of fashion amidst 1950’s London.

Thoughts

In our opinion, Daniel Day-Lewis is the single greatest actor of all time and after today movies will never be the same. Though no reason has been given for the actor’s departure, we hope all is well and wish him the best going forward. Thank you, Daniel Day-Lewis, for all you have given us as film fans and we look forward to seeing Phantom Thread!

‘John Wick’ to expand to TV with prequel series ‘The Continental’

Wherever John Wick goes, things explode. That includes the box office. In fact, John Wick: Chapter 2 did so much damage in theaters that Lionsgate is now looking to expand the IP beyond the flaming hot film franchise starring Keanu Reeves.

Recently, IndieWire learned that co-creator Chad Stahelski, along with screenwriting cohort David Kolstad, will be bringing John Wick to television, or at least the world of John Wick. Under the name The Continental, the series will explore the fascinating, mythological world of assassins and the various franchises of the titular hotel found all around the globe.

It’s also being reported that the series will serve as a prequel to the original John Wick film. Stahelski has also stated that there are plans for Wick himself to make an appearance on the show but clarified that the show will not center around him.

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A writer for the show has not been announced nor are there currently any scheduled production or premiere dates.

What do you all think of a John Wick TV series centered around the Continental? Are you like us and completely stoked about this news? Or could you care less? Let us know in the comments below!

‘The Conjuring 2’ gets second spinoff in ‘The Crooked Man’

Just like the demons of its namesake, The Conjuring cinematic universe grows stronger the more fear it spreads. It just keeps growing and growing, this time adding a film that fans have actually been clamoring for.

THR reports that, along with The Nun, The Conjuring 2 will also be spinning off into The Crooked Man. Mike Van Waes (whose only other IMDb credit includes an upcoming Wizard of Oz horror project) will pen the script for a story by James Wan, though no release date has officially been announced.

The Crooked Man character has roots in an English nursery rhyme:

There was a crooked man, and he walked a crooked mile.

He found a crooked sixpence upon a crooked stile.

He bought a crooked cat, which caught a crooked mouse.

And they all lived together in a little crooked house.

The first spinoff of the series came out in 2014 and went to the possessed doll Annabelle with a film of the same name. A prequel to Annabelle (aptly titled Annabelle: Creation) is currently in the works and scheduled to hit theaters August 11th this year. It is directed by David F. Sandberg, who wrote and directed the surprise horror hit Lights Out last year.

The next entry in The Conjuring universe, The Nun, is slated to drop Friday, July 13th of 2018. The film stars Demian Bichir as a priest who investigates the mysterious death of a nun.

As of now, the films of The Conjuring universe have scared up a worldwide total nearing $900 million.

What do you guys think of this news? Are you excited for The Crooked Man? Do you enjoy these spinoffs? Let us know in the comments below!

Adam Wingard will direct ‘Godzilla vs. Kong’

Adam Wingard is the new King of Monsters. Per The Hollywood Reporter, the filmmaker has officially signed on to spearhead the forthcoming Godzilla vs. Kong for Warner Bros. and Legendary Entertainment.

If the title is anything to go by, the film promises to pit against one another the two movie monstrosities, paw-on-claw. One from Gareth Edwards’ 2014 Godzilla and the other from this year’s Kong: Skull Island (catch our review here).

Wingard himself is a busy guy. So far he’s established a cult fandom with B-list horror flicks like You’re Next and The Guest (starring Dan Stevens). He’s also been recognized for his standout entries in the two anthology horror series V/H/S and The ABC’s of Death. The filmmaker’s last directorial effort came in the form of last year’s surprise sequel Blair Witch and he’s currently wrapping up an American-ized Death Note film for Netflix.

Godzilla vs. Kong will start tearing up theaters May 22, 2020. If you can’t wait that long to sink your teeth back into this shared monster-verse, don’t fret. Godzilla: King of Monsters, a sequel to the 2014 film, is slated for release on March 22, 2019.

So what do you think of this news? Does Wingard’s involvement make you more or less excited for this film? Sound off in the comments below with your thoughts and let us know!

Sony’s ‘Venom’ finds its star in Tom Hardy

You read that correctly.

The in demand actor Tom Hardy is set to star in Sony’s standalone Venom movie, which will feature the titular Spider-Man villain from space. Zombieland‘s Ruben Fleischer will direct from a script written by Scott Rosenberg (Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle) and Jeff Pinkner (The Dark Tower).

Venom will be the first entry in Sony’s planned Spider-Man extended cinematic universe. Ironically, there are currently no plans to include the web-head in this cinematic universe (at least not the current Tom Holland version). Sony has also announced a standalone Black Cat and Silver Sable film.

Venom swings into theaters on Oct. 5th, 2018.

*Opinion*

This is a bold move on Sony’s part. It’s smart casting and a strong foundation for a Spider-Man movieverse without Spider-Man. Initially, I wasn’t excited by the idea. Now, I’m dying to see this movie!

What do you think of this news? Does this excite you for Sony’s Spider-Man-less Spider-Man universe? Let us know in the comments below!