It’s another Friday morning, and that means another edition of the News Bites. Last week was a bit on the light side. This week, not so much. There’s a bit of Pixar, some Marvel Comics movie news, news of TV series and a TV special, and of course, yet more remake discussion. There’s also some rumor-mongering about Star Wars and James Bond, and a double dose of Keanu Reeves news. Because apparently there’s no such thing as too much Keanu.
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For those who can’t get enough Toy Story, Pixar has announced on their Twitter account that this Halloween will bring Toy Story of Terror, a new animated short, to ABC.
Lots of news has been flying around about the next generation of video game consoles, and the Xbox One in particular. Most of that’s outside Morgan on Media’s normal coverage, but there is an interesting tidbit regarding a TV series that is planned for Xbox Live. Steven Spielberg is teaming up with Microsoft to produce a series based on the Halo video game franchise, apparently in the belief that a TV series based on a video game will be more successful than a movie based on a video game (a notion which, historically, has also not borne out particularly well). Bonnie Ross, while announcing the series, stated “Halo has always been more than a game”, which I’m pretty sure is untrue, but best of luck to them in their venture.
Timecop is getting a second chance at the big screen. Universal Pictures is working on a reboot of the Dark Horse Comics property, to be produced by Marc Shmuger and Tom McNulty.
Keanu Reeves’ directorial debut, Man of Tai Chi, was picked up at Cannes by Radius-TWC. The film’s release is planned for the fourth quarter of 2013.
In more Keanu news, the Weinstein Company will distribute the sci-fi romance Passengers, starring Reeves along with Reese Witherspoon. In the story, Reeves is a passenger on a spacecraft traveling to a distant planet, with all the ship’s passengers in suspended animation. When he is accidentally awoken prematurely, he awakens Witherspoon in order to avoid living the rest of his days alone. A release date for the film is not yet known.
The Spike Lee remake of Oldboy has been delayed by two weeks. It is now set for release on October 25, 2013.
Speaking of remakes, the latest Hollywood classic to be the target of a prospective remake is The Wild Bunch. Will Smith is expected to star in the film, which won’t be a direct remake, but a modernization of the film, which was originally a western. The new take will involve a former DEA agent who assembles a team to take on a Mexican drug cartel. Given that the setting and purpose is merely inspired by the original rather than remaking it directly, one wonders why they don’t just change the name and let it stand on its own.
Warehouse 13 is getting one last season, but not a very big one. Syfy has renewed the series for a final season of only six episodes, which will air in 2014.
The 2016 Pixar feature briefly had a name: Día de los Muertos. The film will be inspired by the Mexican holiday, which falls on November 1st and has similar themes to Halloween, but different traditions. There was some flak directed at Disney for filing a trademark on the name, and they have withdrawn the claim, saying they have changed the name of the film. Personally, I think any upset over the trademark claim is silly; trademarks are context-specific, and only meant to protect the use within that context. Trademarking Día de los Muertos in the context of movies does not, in any way, impact a person’s ability to use it in other contexts (such as the holiday or anything else), just like we can still talk about the holiday Halloween in a post-John-Carpenter era. A new name for the film has not yet been announced, but it is known to be directed by Lee Unkrich.
Brian Singer has revealed on his Twitter account that Evan Peters, who has starred in American Horror Story and Kick-Ass, will be joining the cast of X-Men: Days of Future Past as Quicksilver. With news from Joss Whedon a short while back confirming that Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver would be in The Avengers 2, this is the first confirmation that the characters would also be in the X-Men film franchise. Though the franchises are put out by different studios, this oddity is made possible due to the characters having a history with both franchises in the comics, and the studios have already agreed that each can use them, so long as they don’t explicitly mention the other franchise (i.e., in X-Men, they can’t mention the Avengers, and in The Avengers, they can’t mention Magneto). It is not yet known if they’ll be using the same actors or different ones, but given the prequel/time-travel nature of Days of Future Past, it’s likely they’ll take advantage of that to avoid cross-promotion and scheduling conflicts.
Speaking of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, there’s been a rumor that Saoirse Ronan is being considered for the latter role in The Avengers 2. There is no confirmation this yet, but Ronan has said in an interview that she would love to be a part of it.
Who will direct the 24th James Bond film? Reportedly, an approach has been made to Christopher Nolan, but no official word has been announced yet.
It’s been a while since we’ve had an unsourced Star Wars rumor, but has a new one for those who have been waiting. They report that Jonathan Rhys Meyers, who has starred in Mission: Impossible III and the upcoming The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones is in talks for a role in the seventh Star Wars film.