James Cameron explains how his cast will prepare for Avatar 2. Plus Duncan Jones talks Source Code and his sci-fi future!

Gary Oldman reveals which villain he'll be sharing scenes with in The Dark Knight Rises. Captain America's Joe Johnston discusses the movie's debt to Raiders of the Lost Ark. Could a Justice League movie happen after all?

Spoilers from here on out!

Top image from Captain America.

Avatar 2

James Cameron explains some of the unusual steps he'll be taking in preparing his cast for the next film:

"'Avatar' is a film about the rain forest and its indigenous people. Before I start to shoot the two films, I want to bring my actors here [to Brazil], so I can better tell this story. Actors could learn about the natives and what real life in the jungle is like."

[The Hollywood Reporter]


The Dark Knight Rises

Gary Oldman continues to rave about Christopher Nolan's script, and he offered one additional tidbit - his Commissioner Gordon will "have quite a bit to do" with Tom Hardy's Bane. Check the link for a description of Nolan's insane levels of security, which can't really be considered a spoiler but is pretty entertaining in its own right. [MTV Splash Page]

Speaking of Gary Oldman saying stuff, he suggests Christopher Nolan's declaration that this is his final Batman movie might be more of a negotiating tactic than a firm stance. This obviously can't be entirely ruled out, but there doesn't seem much point on speculating on this topic until after the current movie is made and released, and probably even then not until after Nolan has made another, unrelated movie. [Digital Spy]


Superman Reboot

Here's the official confirmation from Zack Snyder that Amy Adams is playing Lois Lane:

"There was a big, giant search for Lois," Snyder said. "For us it was a big thing and obviously a really important role. We did a lot of auditioning but we had this meeting with Amy Adams and after that I just felt she was perfect for it. It goes back to what I've said about Superman and making him really understandable for today. What's important to us is making him relevant and real and making him empathetic to today's audience so that we understand the decisions he makes. That applies to Lois as well. She has to be in the same universe as him."

[Hero Complex]

Though there's not much reason to think Zack Snyder will be removed from this movie in the wake of Sucker Punch's failure - if nothing else, the rumored legal vagaries around Warner Bros's rightd to the character means they probably don't have time to find a new director - here's a good analysis of how Snyder's latest critical and commercial flop might affect the Superman reboot. [MTV]


Captain America

Director Joe Johnston explains that they drew on the Indiana Jones movies as a jumping-off point for the movie's look and feel:

We used ‘Raiders' as a template when we were developing the story, but we sort of moved away from it as time went on… This is futurism in the 1940s; if you went to 1942 and thought of what the future would be, that's what the approach was. The villain has a much more futuristic style and his science and his apparatus - he has a whole design motif that is beyond 1942 but it's what you might have perceived as futuristic from a 1942 vantage point… When you sit down to watch it, it's certainly not ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark,' which is a very different kind of film in the final analysis. But sometimes when we had questions and we were stuck we would say, ‘What would Indiana Jones do?

[Hero Complex]

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And here are some photos. [/Film]

Writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely offer a rather intriguing hint about the movie:

Cap wasn't the only superhero we got to see in the trailer. As we mentioned in our trailer analysis, we also get to see characters like Union Jack, who appears with the Howling Commandos.
McFEELY: Right, and since you know that's Union Jack, and you see that, can you also see that it's not just that we named him Montgomery Falsworth? As you watch the trailer and see more of the movie, ask yourself if there's something about the design of him or how he behaves or anything that makes him that character... Let me put it this way: Bucky's uniform is blue - there's a reason for that!
MARKUS: Yeah, there's a reason for everything. ["Captain America"] is endlessly packable with stuff with like that...

There's much more commentary at the link. [MTV Splash Page]


Thor

Here's a trio of fairly epic new TV spots.



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And here's a new photo. [Spinoff Online]


X-Men: First Class

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Here's a trio of Empire covers showing off various characters in costume, including Charles Xavier, Magneto, Emma Frost, Azazel, Beast, and Mystique. [Newsarama]


Star Trek 2

Screenwriter Bob Orci throws out the possibility that this movie will be set some time after the original. He called this a "significant" issue when he posed this question to the TrekMovie comment boards:

Q: By the time we reunite with the beloved crew of the USS Enterprise in the summer of 2012, what adventures from the original series should already be in their PAST?

None? Two seasons worth? Ten Episodes? Which ones?

Obviously, Orci doesn't answer this question, but it does offer an extra dimension to think about. Check the link for some fan analysis of what the various options might mean for the movie. [TrekMovie]

Script delays for the proposed Jack Ryan reboot, which will tentatively star Chris Pine (taking over for Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, and Ben Affleck), mean that there's no chance the new Captain Kirk will do the Ryan movie before the Star Trek sequel. Paramount is behind both projects, and reportedly the current feeling is it will be better for both franchises to have Pine focus on Star Trek 2 first, then move on to the new Jack Ryan movie.[Deadline]


Source Code

Director Duncan Jones explains that, while he understands the Groundhog Day comparisons, he actually sees the movie as being more like Quantum Leap:

There's a conceit at the heart of the film that is kind of out there, the idea of our hero, Jake's character, being able to re-experience an event to try and get it right. I get the "Groundhog's Day" reference. But I think there are quite a few other appropriate references. To me, when I was reading the script, one of the ones that immediately popped its head out was "Quantum Leap," the TV show with Scott Bakula.

And in fact, Jones managed to score a voice cameo by Bakula, who plays the voice of Gyllenhaal's character's father.

Jake Gyllenhaal explains his developing love for Michelle Monaghan's character is at the heart of the movie:

"In the end, it's romantic. The choice for this guy is not like, ‘Oh, am I really going to save the world?' The choice is that he starts as a guy essentially in someone else's body who is nervous to ask this girl to get a cup of coffee and then has to get blown up eight times to realize that maybe he's got to ask this girl out for a cup of coffee. So I do relate to that. Sometimes it feels like when you walk up to somebody and you're intrigued by them, to gather up the gumption, to ask someone a question like that, feels like you're blowing up inside eight times."

[BostonHerald.com]

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Here are some new photos. [IGN]


Mute

This actually isn't Duncan Jones's next science fiction project, but he explains why his futuristic film noir with a mute protagonist is having so much trouble attracting interest:

"I wont belabor the point but ‘Mute' is a very difficult sell. There's two main problems with ‘Mute' that make it a difficult film to get made: one it's a science fiction film that doesn't rely on a particular science fiction conceit or idea. It's a film noir that just happens to take place in the future. So for film investors its like, ‘Why are we setting this film in the future? Can't we just do it ‘now'?' But it's like, ‘No, that's not the point.' And secondly, and this one I completely understand. When you're trying to get a film made, especially these days at a budget, and by a budget I mean more than $5 million dollars like we did ‘Moon,' you need an actor of a certain level to bring in the financing to make the financiers feel confident the films going to make enough money to make it all back. To find an actor who is willing to put their career on the line, cause they're doing that every time they do a movie, for a main protagonist who doesn't talk at all, is difficult understandably."

And here's a lengthy video interview with the director. [FirstShowing.net]

In the meantime, he confirmed his plans to do the story as a graphic novel:

"So what we're going to try to do is make it as a graphic novel first, which seems to be the way to get things made these days. And also for those people who are interested in seeing ‘Mute,' even if I don't get a chance to make it until I'm in my 80's, at least people will get a chance to see it for themselves in one form. In the meantime I'm going to do another science fiction film anyways."

His actual next sci-fi movie is a "city-based" futuristic film that will take its inspiration from Blade Runner. [The Playlist]


The Hobbit

Costar James Nesbitt describes some of the training that he and his fellow actors are currently undergoing to play the movie's thirteen dwarves:

"We're doing lots of horse riding and stunts and stuff. We're basically playing! It's a very good way to earn a living, it's great. They're working us hard I have to say! But they're very down to earth. It has such a feeling of being a little company, it just happens to be a little company of thousands of people! But everyone is enjoying it. Every day's a little treat."

Who is the best and worst at the stunts, horseriding and so on?
"Richard Armitage is very good at the old horse riding because of course he did it in Robin Hood, so he's very good at that. Of course he's playing our leader, so it's right that he's good at that. Aidan Turner and Rob Kazinsky, they're fit young men. But we're all shapes and all sizes and we all have our own skills."

[Digital Spy]


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II

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Here's a poster. [IGN]


Tree of Life

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Here's a new poster for auteur Terrence Malick's mysterious new project, which is thought to be a human drama with cosmic overtones. Some of the images on the poster do seem to support that idea, what with the planets and the dinosaurs. [/Film]


Justice League

This is probably just old news - and garbled at that - but a profile on incoming Warner Bros. president Jeff Robinov suggests there are plans to team up DC's main superheroes in a Justice League movie in 2013. This doesn't really fit with what Warner Bros. has actually done in recent years - Christopher Nolan has been fairly definitive when asked that his Batman movies exist in their own separate continuity, and Green Lantern and Superman are the only other DC properties that have even made any substantial headway - but this is the first thing we've heard about the idea since George Miller's project collapsed, so...I guess it's not impossible. Maybe. But I wouldn't even bother taking this with a grain of salt just yet. [The L.A. Times via Collider]


Kick-Ass 2

Original movie screenwriter Jane Goldman says the project is not in active development, and everyone involved in the first movie are busy doing other things. Although she says people would still like to make a sequel, Goldman puts it in terms of that "maybe the moment will be right one day, hopefully", so I wouldn't hold your breath. Cue Mark Millar completely contradicting this in three, two, one... [/Film]


Theoretical James Gunn Superhero Project

This is pretty speculative, but Slither and Super director was asked if he would ever helm a big-budget superhero movie, and he offered an answer that suggested the idea has been discussed before:

"Yeah, I mean there's a lot of things that I would like to do and I've even talked to people about it. I've had discussions with Marvel, even from the beginning of the career. I remember being offered to write 'Fantastic Four' ten years ago or some that I didn't do. If something inspired me I would. A lot of things I'm attracted to may not be may not be the most popular superheroes in the world and so it's just a matter of finding the right project. But I would do it if it was something that inspired me...I don't think my next movie is going to be an ultra-low budget movie like 'Super,' but I don't think — I love doing it, I'm happy I did it, but if I do it again for another year I think it might kill me. So I think I'm going to do something with a little bit of a bigger budget, more of an entertaining pop-show and that's what I plan on doing next."

[Latino Review]


I, Frankenstein

Of all the ridiculous genre mash-ups currently in the works, this might be my new favorite. Apparently, the story concerns Frankenstein's monster, who is now "working as a private detective in a gothic sea-side city where he must contend with sundry classic monsters." I have no idea why he has to be by the sea, but I'm on board. Also reportedly on board is director Stuart Beattie, who recently helmed the Australian film Tomorrow, When the World Began and has helped write genre efforts like 30 Days of Night and G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. [The Hollywood Reporter]


Trylie Trilogy

District 9 writer Terri Tatchell is adapting Amanda Hocking's fantasy series Trylie Trilogy, which concerns "a girl who finds herself in a land of beautiful trolls", into a pair of movies. [Digital Spy]


War of Ages

The Strause brothers are working on their follow-up to Skyline, and judging by this description from Greg Strause, they aren't planning on adding understatement or subtlety to their repertoire:

'War of the Ages' is going to be the next news item. Basically, an ancient artifact is uncovered, time is shattered and the seven greatest war leaders in history have to battle each other out. It's sort of like 'The Lord of the Rings' meets 'Gladiator.' You have Napoleon vs. Julius Caesar vs. Attila the Hun vs. Genghis Khan vs. Alexander vs. Hannibal. So, there you go. It's going to be in 3D and it's a big sword-and-sandal epic."

[The Moviefone Blog]


The Plantation

The Highland Film Group and RKO are reportedly working on a remake of the film I Walked With A Zombie under the new title The Plantation, and the Highland website claims that Gary Oldman and Liv Tyler are interested in getting involved. I'm guessing that doesn't necessarily have much connection to reality, but you can check the link for a synopsis of the movie. [ShockTillYouDrop]


Doctor Who

This rumor was just wild speculation yesterday, and now it's officially confirmed. Neil Gaiman's episode will indeed be titled "The Doctor's Wife," and the title character appears to be Suranne Jones's character Idris. Here's a roundup of various official hints about the episode:

Steven Moffat: [It's] a beautiful poem of an episode. [Suranne Jones] will change the way you see Doctor Who forever forever – and that's a hand-on-heart promise.
Neil Gaiman: Idris is someone who is beautiful, and who bites, and who might just turn out to be an old acquaintance with a new face... [adding] it starts in void-space, with something – or someone – we have not seen since The War Games, and a knock on the TARDIS door...
Marcus Wilson (episode producer): It's an episode that involves quite a big sprawl, huge alien world locations and a new take on a familiar character, which required a lot of work. It's a big episode, but I think it'll be one the fans will love. It's a real love letter to the fans.

Of course, the question with all this is just who the Doctor's wife actually is - while the series has recently implied marriages to the likes of Queen Elizabeth I and Marilyn Monroe (not to mention River Song, depending on how you read that whole thing), the series has otherwise never introduced us to any characters that could be considered the Doctor's wife, so who is this "familiar character"/"old acquaintance"? The most interesting speculation we've heard so far is this character is actually the TARDIS, which does fit most of the details we've heard, and so the Doctor's dear old thing gets transformed into a sentient humanoid for this episode. (There's also rumors that the episode was originally called "Bigger on the Inside", which would seem to lend credence to that idea) And hey...Idris does sound a bit like TARDIS, doesn't it? Doesn't it!? Anyway, color us excited.

[The Doctor Who News Page, Doctor Who Online, and Doctor Who Spoilers]


Fringe

Here's a short description for the upcoming episode "Lysergic Acid Diethylamide": "The team makes a desperate attempt to remove William Bell's consciousness from Olivia's body before she's lost forever." [Fringe Spoilers]


Supernatural

Jensen Ackles talks up the upcoming Western episode:

"The guys find a formula to battle Eve, the mother of all monsters, but the problem is the only record of this formula ever existing happened over a 100 years ago. So they call upon their angel friends to give them a time-travel experience. I sent a picture to my father [from this episode], and he wrote back, ‘You've been rehearsing this scene since you were six.' I get to have, like, a high noon shootout, we get to see a hanging...We packed a lot into a 42-minute episode. It's really good."

[TV Line]


Locke & Key

Show runner Josh Friedman has confirmed the pilot has wrapped shooting and is now in the editing stage. [@Josh_Friedman]


The Voyage

More details on the pilot that John Shiban, who has written for the insanely amazing Breaking Bad (and also The Vampire Diaries, which is insane in a slightly different way), is developing for AMC. The show would reportedly involve "a realistic take on First Contact with an ambitious female scientist who works with a team at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory as the lead character." [EW]


Smallville

Days Of Our Lives star Eric Martsolf discusses Booster Gold, who he plays in an upcoming episode that teams him up with Blue Beetle:

"[Booster is] a glory-seeking showboat from the future. The episode takes place in Booster's very early stages where he's at his conceited best, where he believes he can do whatever he wants. He's gonna stay for the photo op and bask in the glory of his heroic efforts. [Clark Kent] wants to stand in the back and not be a glory hound. They are completely opposites of one another."

Episode writer Geoff Johns also offers this take on what Booster has to teach Clark:

"The one thing Booster does prove to Clark is that people want to look up to this guy. They want to be inspired, and no one's doing it for them."

He also reveals Booster has a strange - and perhaps not entirely legitimate - knack for always showing up at disasters at the perfect moment to save the day, which I suspect might mean that the episode draws on parts of his story-line from the acclaimed 52.

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And here's a photo of Booster in action, along with Jaime Reyes' Blue Beetle.
[TV Guide]


Additional reporting by Gordon Jackson, Charlie Jane Anders, and Michael Ann Dobbs.