Weekly Ketchup

Weekly Ketchup: Will Smith's Pet Project and Evil Dead... With Music!

Also, more Marvel, an Inside Man sequel, and Soderbergh's Liberace.

by | September 12, 2008 | Comments

This was another extremely busy week for movie news, mostly because of the Toronto International Film Festival, at which movie makers are pressed to come up with lots of quotes about their future plans. So, I had to really narrow things down a bit to come up with just ten stories, and I’m sure if you’re following movie news, you’ll notice some of what I left out (Iron Man 2 and Ghostbusters 3, for example), but I wanted to make sure I didn’t miss covering some really big and/or cool movies that were newly announced this week. Oh, and Duke Nukem.


America’s best movie buddy, Will Smith, has a pet project lined up called The Last Pharaoh, in which he will play Taharqa, an Egyptian pharaoh who defended his land from Assyrian invaders in the 7th century BC. The Last Pharaoh is being written by Randall Wallace (Braveheart) for Columbia Pictures, based upon a story idea that Smith has reportedly wanted to see made into a movie for a very long time. This project is the blockbuster equivalent of a Reese’s cup, combining Will Smith’s (amazing) box office record with the (mostly) reliable genre of historical war epics (see: 300, Gladiator, Troy). In similar news that I can’t ignore because I’m such a huge fan of the 1970s BBC miniseries, Relativity Media has acquired the rights to the Robert Graves novel, I, Claudius, with Jim Sheridan (In America) to cowrite and direct. The scope of I, Claudius is extremely broad, covering the reigns of four Roman caesars (Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula and Claudius himself, who narrates it all), and would seem too ambitious for a single film (although it was attempted, and abandoned, back in the 1930s). Both The Last Pharaoh and I, Claudius hold a lot of promise for fans of historical epics.


Producers Don Carmody and Sam Raimi are in talks to bring the stage play, Evil Dead: The Musical, to the big screen in full 3-D glory. Take a minute to absorb that sentence, in all of its awesomeness. The musical version of Raimi’s classic horror/comedy masterpiece has a quirky feel that calls to mind titles like Little Shop of Horrors and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, but with, you know… a lot more gore and creepy zombie action, and looks to be an ingenious concept for a big screen version. Check out YouTube for clips from the play, and you’ll see what I mean, I think. The movie will feature “some” of the original cast, which leaves room for Bruce Campbell to star as Ash (one can only hope).


After a really dreadful summer, 20th Century Fox is looking to the Marvel Comics properties that it has the rights to in hopes of coming up with hits for future years, which include plans for another X-Men movie, a Deadpool movie (spinning off of the character’s inclusion in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, played by Ryan Reynolds) and a new Daredevil movie. No details were given in the piece, but based on things already known, the X-Men movie is likely to focus on young characters (possibly an origin story for the classic original five characters: Cyclops, Jean Grey, Beast, Angel and Iceman), and the Daredevil movie is likely to be a reboot, similar to what was recently done with The Incredible Hulk (ie, no Ben Affleck). What’s curiously missing from this story is any mention of X-Men Origins: Magneto, and what isn’t so surprisingly missing is any mention of another Fantastic Four movie, or its at-one-time-planned spin off, Silver Surfer. As for the Daredevil movie, I think this is a pretty good idea, because the character has no lack of great comic stories to draw upon, including several by Sin City/300 creator Frank Miller. If they could get Miller to come aboard to make a Daredevil movie, fans would DROOL.


Johnny Depp and Pirates of the Carribean director Gore Verbinski are reteaming on an animated CGI project called Rango for Nickelodeon and Paramount, about a pet (of a curiously unspecified species) who goes on an “adventure to discover its true self”, with Industrial Lights & Magic handling the CGI, which will be using motion-capture so that Depp will be providing the face and expressions of the creature… whatever it is. This will be ILM’s first venture into the field of full animated movies, but the company obviously has a huge history of CGI, so they should be very capable.


Universal is moving forward with plans for a sequel to Inside Man, the bank heist thriller that gave director Spike Lee his biggest hit ever, with the director and two of his stars, Denzel Washington and Clive Owen, in talks to return. The new movie, which is expected to be written by Terry George (cowriter of Hotel Rwanda), will feature those two characters in a new story that focuses on a new situation that continues the relationship between Washington’s hostage negotiator and Owen’s bank robber characters. I have to admit that I’ve never gotten around to actually seeing Inside Man, so please don’t spoil me as to why Jodie Foster isn’t mentioned in this story.


Hollywood’s decade long infatuation with the concept of a Liberace biopic, about the flamboyant pianist, appears to be coming to fruition with news that director Steven Soderbergh is working with Warner Bros on just such a project, with Richard LaGravenese (The Fisher King) working on the script. Although the trade notes that Liberace will not be Soderbergh’s next project (“or even the one after that”), casting is already underway, with Michael Douglas (who does actually bear a resemblance) to star, and one of Soderbergh’s frequent stars, Matt Damon, in talks to play Scott Thorson, Liberace’s longtime companion. Liberace has to wait in line a bit, as Soderbergh’s always busy slate currently includes his two Che Guevara movies coming out this fall, The Informant with Matt Damon in post-production, and his low-budget prostitute project, The Girlfriend Experience, which is set to be the next film to actually shoot.


George Clooney, in his producer role, is in negotiations with a few big names (Kevin Spacey, Ewan McGregor and Jeff Bridges) to costar with him in The Men Who Stare at Goats, based upon a non-fiction book the U.S. Army’s (reported) efforts in Iraq to utilize soldiers with paranormal ESP abilities. Filming starts early next month, with Clooney collaborator Grant Heslov making his directorial debut from a script by Peter Straughan (How to Lose Friends and Alienate People).


Beat poet Allen Ginsberg is getting the anecdotal biopic treatment via an independent production called Howl (the name of his most famous poem), focusing on the 1956 obscenity trial following its publication. The movie has an impressive cast, which includes James Franco (starring as Ginsberg), frequent Apatowiverse costar Paul Rudd, Alan Alda as the judge overseeing the case, David Strathairn as the prosecutor and Mary Louise Parker as a witness. What’s missing from the cast are all the famous people and literary peers that Ginsberg knew, but given the limited scope of the story, perhaps they will just be name checked.


Blue Man Group, the long running theatrical trio who wear bright face paint and bang around on stuff and force music out from unusual sources, have firmed up plans to bring their entertaining stylings to 3-D IMAX screens in June, 2010. The movie is being produced by the same person behind the recent Journey to the Center of the Earth (also 3-D), and filming is expected to start in June, 2009.


One of the producers of next month’s Max Payne movie revealed that he has active plans to focus on Duke Nukem next. Popular in the 1990s for mixing first person shooter gameplay with a cocky macho character, Duke Nukem has become more notorious in this decade for the length of time that the latest game, Duke Nukem Forever has taken to be developed (since 1997!). In the same piece, the producer mentions high hopes for a Max Payne sequel if the first one does well.

For past installments of Weekly Ketchup move your mouse HERE and click!

You can contact Greg Dean Schmitz via a message at the RT Forums, the thread there devoted to him, or his MySpace page.

Tag Cloud

CBS All Access DC Universe GoT psycho Trivia hollywood Pop TV Spectrum Originals Paramount Plus 2020 Hallmark Dark Horse Comics HBO target scene in color Discovery Channel Universal Pictures Summer superman stand-up comedy royal family sports what to watch mission: impossible interviews CNN dc Star Wars Celebration USA scary movies transformers Ghostbusters 007 rt labs Acorn TV laika Sony Pictures scorecard Starz robots breaking bad romance 2018 aapi CBS child's play comic books emmy awards historical drama YouTube Red BET Awards CW Seed Toys HFPA cars Martial Arts summer preview Endgame nature superhero APB reviews scene in color 72 Emmy Awards rotten disaster dark Apple MCU toronto cooking streaming movies Biopics psychological thriller TNT Rocketman Disney Channel History American Society of Cinematographers Valentine's Day Black Mirror spanish language olympics The CW Calendar comic book movie Apple TV Plus blaxploitation Television Academy 71st Emmy Awards Year in Review Family gangster Food Network political drama IMDb TV ESPN Teen wonder woman critic resources spider-verse NBC Instagram Live Elton John Ovation Animation prank politics chucky zombies sequels zero dark thirty obituary 2017 book HBO Max 2015 slasher Trophy Talk worst Sundance spy thriller mob biography name the review jurassic park Oscars Academy Awards Song of Ice and Fire LGBTQ 79th Golden Globes Awards Comic-Con@Home 2021 YouTube Comics on TV 90s Classic Film razzies Sneak Peek black Awards SDCC hidden camera 45 satire VH1 die hard cops debate award winner BBC HBO Go docudrama President deadpool RT21 mutant cancelled television Shudder best Emmys Arrowverse FXX Sci-Fi BET mcc telelvision kong BBC One 21st Century Fox Pride Month crossover Trailer Emmy Nominations television YouTube Premium witnail DGA 20th Century Fox Tomatazos ghosts medical drama DC streaming service documentary golden globes doctor who summer TV harry potter Epix mockumentary monster movies posters criterion WGN comedies latino Countdown Showtime screenings know your critic Lifetime Christmas movies A24 ITV social media women Alien SXSW Binge Guide news Interview comic book movies dreamworks kids ABC Signature Marathons BAFTA Premiere Dates obi wan Amazon Prime Video Kids & Family Cannes Best Actress Marvel Television Television Critics Association renewed TV shows Schedule Superheroe Star Trek streaming popular Universal comics Shondaland The Academy teaser halloween Disney+ Disney Plus saw Comic Book Best Picture worst movies Pop 99% cancelled TV series new zealand Comedy Photos king arthur FOX Stephen King war TV Land E3 TCA TV movies action-comedy live event Country sequel PaleyFest Masterpiece TCA Awards revenge festivals Adult Swim Britbox sopranos Horror serial killer venice The Purge international Fall TV trailers joker Warner Bros. adenture VICE DirecTV Fargo Netflix Christmas movies singing competition Musicals Western TCM children's TV The Walt Disney Company critics parents South by Southwest Film Festival game show basketball supernatural 2016 technology free movies classics all-time hist Nickelodeon cats high school Black History Month Red Carpet unscripted Oscar Lucasfilm scary Crackle Creative Arts Emmys broadcast universal monsters concert IFC Films Marvel Studios AMC Music Cosplay tv talk Holiday The Arrangement BBC America casting Lifetime GLAAD Rocky Paramount Thanksgiving NYCC Image Comics zombie 2019 marvel cinematic universe Broadway Indigenous streamig TBS Turner Character Guide 4/20 Pet Sematary MSNBC MTV Rock period drama Mystery FX on Hulu Best Director IFC blockbuster independent Chernobyl Certified Fresh Syfy black comedy Reality south america Mary Tyler Moore X-Men docuseries scene in color film series fast and furious TV renewals theme song video movies ABC sitcom comic 73rd Emmy Awards indiana jones E! Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Tokyo Olympics Native Pacific Islander Avengers binge Pirates Drama films Cartoon Network boxoffice Opinion DC Comics quibi cults Infographic Box Office YA LGBT feel good 2021 facebook Heroines Winter TV police drama Podcast 24 frames The Walking Dead TIFF Rom-Com genre Ellie Kemper Fox News remakes dramedy a nightmare on elm street Sony italian true crime TCA Winter 2020 Hallmark Christmas movies Wes Anderson diversity First Reviews Disney Video Games asian-american National Geographic foreign Logo ABC Family ID Best Actor Paramount Pictures A&E 1990s franchise anthology Super Bowl japanese Brie Larson travel Travel Channel stop motion Spike canceled Hollywood Foreign Press Association Disney Plus book adaptation werewolf Sundance Now Mudbound CMT OneApp crime lord of the rings Amazon Anna Paquin 94th Oscars game of thrones Writers Guild of America Polls and Games anime El Rey Tubi japan Winners dexter USA Network biopic nbcuniversal Awards Tour adaptation slashers young adult sag awards Mary Poppins Returns Amazon Studios GIFs finale Tarantino Mary poppins comiccon crime thriller hispanic Marvel justice league movie 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards directors Spring TV Captain marvel dragons boxing Columbia Pictures Grammys trophy Quiz Mindy Kaling rotten movies we love Nominations The Witch Baby Yoda 93rd Oscars thriller godzilla See It Skip It Set visit Netflix OWN elevated horror richard e. Grant stoner leaderboard Action Walt Disney Pictures dogs Holidays Hulu live action video on demand ratings VOD king kong TV Exclusive Video dceu heist movie cartoon PBS halloween tv based on movie Prime Video australia james bond Turner Classic Movies Esquire festival fresh Fantasy hispanic heritage month NBA science fiction Best and Worst Vudu jamie lee curtis adventure Funimation Hear Us Out spanish Focus Features reboot christmas movies art house Peacock natural history pirates of the caribbean Extras rt labs critics edition marvel comics talk show versus Reality Competition Disney streaming service football Bravo Amazon Prime archives batman Lionsgate Sundance TV green book TV One AMC Plus crime drama Film summer TV preview kaiju Comedy Central toy story spinoff suspense Apple TV+ Neflix Tumblr Paramount Network TruTV scene in color series blockbusters new star wars movies MGM FX SundanceTV TCA 2017 Tags: Comedy WarnerMedia golden globe awards New York Comic Con ViacomCBS cancelled TV shows First Look animated rt archives San Diego Comic-Con Election spain twilight spider-man cancelled Film Festival SXSW 2022 strong female leads documentaries Women's History Month TLC Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Pixar aliens screen actors guild rom-coms Christmas nfl Watching Series romantic comedy Geeked Week target Legendary vampires miniseries Musical canceled TV shows Nat Geo Star Wars space vs. series french Freeform indie RT History discovery Fox Searchlight legend Superheroes new york Crunchyroll composers PlayStation cinemax