Simon Kinberg says the new Star Wars movies will totally disregard the Expanded Universe. Fantastic Four's going to be a mix of Sam Raimi's Spider-Man and Chronicle. Terminator: Genesis starts filming, and there are new X-Men: Apocalypse details. Plus more about Agents of SHIELDand Arrow. Spoilers now!
Top image: The Amazing Spider-Man 2
It looks like we have confirmation that the Expanded Universe is being tossed out, to make room for the new films. Speaking with IGN, Simon Kinberg said:
You know, it's not off-limits, and it's certainly inspiring — I'm working on an animated show for [Lucasfilm] as well, Star Wars: Rebels, that will take inspiration from everywhere, but — I know for the movies, the canon is the canon, and the canon is the six films that exist.
I'm definitely not allowed to talk about the content of the Star Wars stuff. I can say that I'm a ridiculously huge fan, I love Boba Fett and I love, obviously, all of the characters in that world. For me — and I know it was true for J.J [Abrams], and Larry Kasdan and Kathy Kennedy and Michael Arndt — it was all about honoring the original movies, and yet wanting to take a step forward, too, and tell a new story.
Emphasis mine. Also mine is personal sadness, not that I really expected anything else. While it would be nice to have the EU not be entirely contradicted by the new films, it was always more likely that Disney and Abrams would want to work with a clean slate. [IGN via The Hollywood Reporter]
The Amazing Spider-Man 2
We pretty much had guessed this from the photos of Emma Stone wearing the same clothes as she wore during that storyline in the comics — but the death of Gwen Stacy as the film's climax has been officially confirmed, now that this film is already out in the U.K. Director Marc Webb is already commenting on this tragic event in interviews, saying:
It was something that as a fan of the comic books had such a profound effect on the culture and me, even though I experienced it many years later.
.I think it's important to understand that there's consequence in this universe and that not everything always turns out well. Storytelling is there because it helps you deal with and conceive of things that are tragic in your own life, and that's something we wanted to acknowledge.
. . . [It's the idea that even a superhero can't stop time and that there's certain inevitable qualities to being a heroic character. In many ways, Gwen is as, if not more, heroic than Spider-Man.
Even though Patrick Stewart has said that he thinks he could return for Apocalypse, Simon Kinberg says that the next film will be focusing mostly on the newer cast:
It really follows the 'First Class' cast. Meaning it is a sequel that will feature McAvoy, Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nic Hoult and that cast. It is not a sequel that would necessarily feature Ian, Patrick, Halle and the original cast. It would take place roughly between the past of 'Days of Future Past' and when 'X-Men' first started.
As for whether the time travel of Days of Future Past could smooth the continuity from the previous films into something else (and maybe retcon out of existence the most egregious problems with The Last Stand), Kinberg answered:
Certainly things that take place in 'Days of Future Past' in the past have an impact on the future. That's the whole point of the plot and, I can say, in at least the vaguest of terms there are repercussions from what happens in 1973 that ripple all the way forward in time. Which means they would ripple through the time periods of the original 'X-Men' movies. That's a vague answer to your question.
The Fantastic Four
Along with X-Men: Days of Future Past, Kinberg is also working on the Fantastic Four reboot, which Kinberg said is gearing up for filming:
It's great! It's two weeks away from shooting. I was in Baton Rouge the day before yesterday. I'm going back tomorrow. The cast shows up this week. The script is in really good shape. I think it's going to be a really neat, special different movie.
As to the tone, Kinberg says director Josh Trank is looking for a mix of Sam Raimi and his own debut film, The Chronicle:
It's a much more grounded, gritty, realistic movie than the last couple movies. If I had to say, the tone of it would be somewhere on the spectrum between Spider-Man and Chronicle. The other movies were even further on the spectrum of being goofy and fun than Spider-Man.
Raimi Spider-Man, yeah, not Amazing Spider-Man. Josh Trank's instincts are to be as realistic and grounded and real with this stuff as possible. In many ways I would say it's definitely more of a drama than comedy.
Is that true to the comic books, because Fantastic Four is one of the lighter Marvel books?
It's still in the direction of Spider-Man. It's not like Dark Knight. And even Chronicle has a lot of fun in it. We're treating this as the origin of the Fantastic Four so in future movies you'd have them on sort of splashier adventures to some extent but in this one we tried to ground the science as much as possible and make it feel like it could take place in our world before it cantilevers into other worlds.
Slashfilm has a reaction and description of some footage that was shown this weekend. Here's how they described the scenes they saw:
The first was a clip from the party for the birth of baby Aurora. Maleficent enters and curses the baby to fall into a deep sleep after her 16th birthday. The interesting thing in the subtext though, are the glances exchanged between she and the King, played by Sharlto Copley. It's almost like these two used to be together. She makes him beg to save the child, which is when the provision is put in about true love's kiss.
The second scene is Aurora walking in the woods. Maleficent casts a whimsical spell and gently floats her to a more secluded, darker section of the woods. The princess then wakes up to discover a lively, dark, but beautiful area that looks much like Pandora in Avatar.
See their reactions, and more details, at the link. [Slashfilm]
Parts Per Billion
Millenium has nabbed the United States distribution rights to this film. It stars Rosario Dawson, Josh Hartnett, Teresa Palmer, Penn Badgley, Frank Langella and Gena Rowlands as three couples forced to make "life-defining" decisions as a pandemic spreads and throws humanity into chaos. [Deadline]
Rising Resident Evil
At the Beijing International Film Festival, Paul W.S. Anderson said that the next sequel will "definitely" be in 3-D. He also said:
I have to go home tomorrow for 'Rising Resident Evil'. That's what I'm going to do. As you know, [Li] Bingbing is in the last movie and she will be there again... After 'Resident Evil' I want to come to China and shoot film again.
Filming began in New Orleans yesterday, and The Times-Picayune has a nice round-up of what's already been revealed. [The Times-Picayune]
Agents of SHIELD
Executive producer Jeffrey Bell talked about the season finale, which sounds like it'll be a mess no matter who comes out on top:
We think the audience is waiting for a showdown between Coulson's team and Garrett's team and they're going to get a satisfying payoff to that epic conclusion. If they win, it comes at a price.
Amy Acker previewed what's up with her character in tonight's episode:
Well, she has someone after her from her past. And you find out that Coulson has been watching over her and is trying to protect her. I think that once he found out about Hydra and everything kind of dissolved as far as S.H.I.E.L.D., he knew the ramifications of what that meant as far as who is out there. He realized that she could be in trouble, and so that became a priority.
TVLINE | Is there any indication of what she's been up to since fate tore them apart?
Yeah, I have a really nice, pretty speech that they wrote about just how hard it was to get over him, trying to kind of put my life back together since I lost him.
Once Upon a Time
The season finale will have a wedding, and will reveal why Zelena's after the Charming baby. As for everything else, well, executive producers Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz say:
Hearts will be broken. Hearts will be healed. There will be surprise returns and new arrivals.
Speaking of the baby, here are some photos from the arrival of the baby, scheduled for May 4th's episode. [Entertainment Weekly]
Here's a promo for this Sunday's "A Curious Thing." [K Site TV]
The finale is really a three-parter, with the last episode taking place in real time. As for what's in store, EP Andrew Kreisberg calls it "some of the darkest stuff we've ever done." And it will not be confined to Starling:
There's a couple of massive surprises for the island. The gloves are off and anybody can die at any minute.
Under the Dome
Here's how executive producer Neal Bear describes season 2:
This is a season of transformation. Last year was a season of secrets being revealed about our characters. Now, they really have to cope with the ramifications of what this all means, since it doesn't look like they're getting out any time soon.
In the premiere, two characters will die. But they'll be replaced by an expanding cast: Eddie Cahill's Sam Verdreaux, the reclusive brother-in-law of Big Jim; Karla Crome's Rebecca Pine, a teacher who works with Big Jim; and Grace Victoria Cox's Melanie, who is pulled from the lake by Julia Shumway just after the events of the season 1 finale. Go here for photos from season 2. [USA Today]
Game of Thrones
Here's the promo for episode 4.04, "Oathkeeper." [via SpoilerTV]
Here's a new trailer. [Shock Till You Drop]
Additional reporting by Charlie Jane Anders and Madeleine Monson-Rosen