It's only been a few days since the Disney/Lucasfilm deal and a new Star Wars trilogy were announced - and already the rumors are twirling like Darth Maul's lightsabers. Also, will Guillermo del Toro direct a movie about a magical version of the Justice League? The next Terminator movie could be coming after all. The final two Hunger Games movies have a director. Dark City's Alex Proyas is signed up to direct a new TV pilot about superpowered mutants in a post-apocalyptic city. And Revolution could be giving us an explanation for the blackout - a scientifically accurate one! - sooner than you expect.
Tons and tons of spoilers below…
Star Wars Episode VII:
Now that this sequel is officially coming in 2015, it's way past time for the rumor mill to crank into action. First off: Ain't It Cool News passes along rumor/speculation that director Brad Bird and writer Damon Lindelof are actually hard at work on the Star Wars sequel - we already knew that Bird and Lindelof were working on a mystery "tentpole" project called 1952, which was vaguely compared to Close Encounters of the Third Kind - but what if that project is actually Star Wars Episode VII, and they've been working on it for a while already? That would be pretty cunning, right?
Lindelof (who was already making jokes about silly new Star Wars story ideas on Twitter) responded to this story obliquely, Tweeting: "If I ever need a suicide note, I'll just print out this comments section," and linking to the AICN article. Update: anonymous sources tell First Showing this isn't actually true. [AICN]
Separately, what if instead of episodes 7-9, it's actually episodes 7-12? That's right, two new trilogies. At least, Dale Pollock, who wrote a 1984 biography of George Lucas called Skywalking: The Life And Films Of George Lucas, recalls that Lucas had planned for Star Wars to have 12 installments in all, of which 7-9 would be the most exciting. Pollock tells The Wrap, "The three most exciting stories were 7, 8 and 9. They had propulsive action, really interesting new worlds, new characters. I remember thinking, ‘I want to see these 3 movies.'" And those films were supposed to involve Luke in his 30s and 40s, played by a different actor than Mark Hamill, whom Lucas was not impressed by.
Needless to say, it's likely that whatever ideas Lucas had in 1984, they're long since scrapped and probably have little to do with the treatments he just sold Disney. [The Wrap]
What about who's going to direct Episode VII? At this point, it's more speculation than rumor - although give it a few days, and "inside sources" will probably start coming forward with shortlists of directors under consideration. Pretty much every director with a pulse is being talked about as a possible new Star Wars helmer - including M. Night Shyamalan. (Who, it must be noted, already gave the world his own take on Star Wars with The Last Airbender.) [Huffington Post]
George Lucas made a point of telling Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill about the new sequels last summer, Hamill tells EW. Lucas invited Fisher and Hamill to lunch and revealed that three new Star Wars films were in the works, and swore them to secrecy. Does this mean that Hamill and Fisher have roles in the new films? Hamill says he doesn't know anything about that. [EW]
Speaking of rumors… the same source who originated the idea that the scrapped Locke & Key pilot would become a movie also claims that Guillermo del Toro is possibly in line to direct a team-up film featuring all of DC Comics' magical characters. Including Deadman, The Spectre, Swamp Thing, John Constantine, Phantom Stranger, Zatanna, Zatara, Sargon and Etrigan the Demon. The source says del Toro wowed Warner Bros. so much with Pacific Rim they'll let him do whatever he wants - but this project is a long way off because the lawyers have to clear the rights to all the characters. Obviously, grain of salt indicated here. [Latino Review via Slashfilm]
We've all been assuming this project is dead in the water. But Annapurna Pictures (which owns the rights currently), issued a cryptic tweet: ‘"The whole thing goes: The future's not set. There's no fate but what we make for ourselves." -John Connor, Terminator 2 (news is coming).' [via Giant Freakin Robot]
Yes, this classic computer game will really be a movie, with Roger Avary writing and directing. And it'll apparently be a "wild and cinematic" action-adventure film about a U.S. Army captain and a British Special Agent infiltrating the eponymous castle, where Hitler is unveiling a new secret weapon. (Showtunes?) [Coming Soon]
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Parts 1 & 2:
Francis Lawrence, who's already directing Catching Fire, will also direct the final two movies in the series. [Coming Soon]
Karl Urban and Willow Shields (The Hunger Games) will star in this fantasy movie about a 14-year-old girl who's transported by a magic rainbow to China, along with two of her classmates. They're pursued by the authorities as well as a "mysterious organization," but they're helped by Consul William Stanley (Urban.) But then it turns out their arrival has triggered a major natural disaster. With their new friend Cheng (Leehom Wang) they find a way home, but they still have to stop the global catastrophe. And even having just typed all of that, I still don't understand any of it. Oh, and this is going to be directed by Ron Underwood (Mighty Joe Young). [Hollywood Reporter]
This Irish-Portuguese production about six people who are transported to the post-apocalyptic world of 2018 (and have to survive long enough to figure out how they got there and get home) just entered post-production. It's directed by Jason Butler (Butchers) and features Iain Robertson, Bella Heesom, Jamie Maclachlan, Lucy Cudden, Teresa Tavares and Marco Costa. [ITFN]
ABC is developing a new series based on the Toxic City trilogy written by Tim Lebbon, in which there's a terrorist attack and the ruins of London are cordoned off by soldiers - but the people left inside the city start developing strange superpowers. For the TV version, London is going to be changed to L.A. (of course.) And the pilot will be directed by Alex Proyas (Dark City) and written/produced by Jaime Paglia (Eureka). This could actually be pretty great - fingers crossed. [Collider]
Creator Eric Kripke says the show is seriously considering revealing what caused the blackout before the end of the season. And this is an answer that has passed muster with a physicist who was consulted by the producers, so it's reasonably scientifically plausible. Kripke adds: "The sweet spot is to find an answer that's actually scarier than what you were thinking. Like, ‘Oh wait, this is not even just about electricity.' And that's what we're designing. I don't see any reason to withhold it much longer."
And Billy Burke, who plays Miles, says that the answer as to the cause of the blackout has reassured the show's actors, who have lots of questions about why different technologies wouldn't work. Says Burke, "There always seems to be a technologically sound answer for the questions." Would a scientifically plausible explanation for the blackout make you love this show more? [EW]
Here's the official description for episode eight, "Ties That Bind," via SpoilerTV: "When Nora (Daniella Alonso) encounters a close relative, she must make a difficult choice between family and a promise. Meanwhile, one of the most ruthless members of the Militia is tracking Miles (Billy Burke), Charlie (Tracy Spiridakos) and the gang and General Monroe (David Lyons) hands Captain Neville (Giancarlo Esposito) a stern warning."
American Horror Story: Asylum:
Don't assume that Leo and Teresa are actually dead, says creator Ryan Murphy. We will definitely see more of 2012 Briarcliff, and Satan will keep trying to corrupt and manipulate Sister Jude. And it sounds like things are only going to get worse for Chloe Sevigny: "Her dilemma and her pain and her trying to escape in the next couple of episodes is a really big plot point so I don't wanna say much. When you see the evolution of what Dr. Arden continues to do to her, it's pretty amazing." [EW]
Also, Sevigny told a conference call that Dr. Arden might be going Frankenstein - and that Shelley could be turning into one of those weird creatures. [SpoilerTV]
Once Upon a Time:
Here's a brand new sneak peek from Sunday's episode:
Despite somewhat lukewarm ratings, this sitcom about aliens has gotten a full season pickup. [TV Equals]
The Vampire Diaries:
Here's a first look at Gabby Douglas in episode seven, via SpoilerTV.
Next season we'll find out why some wolves have blue eyes, while others don't, in what's described as an important flashback. [Zap2It]
Episode 3x02 will be called "Chaos Rising," and we'll meet a new recurring character named Cora, a "beautiful raven-haired, mysterious woman with a secret tie to werewolves." [SpoilerTV]
Additional reporting by Rob H. Dawson.