We break down a pair of Avengers rumors — one superhero might be joining the team for the sequel, and another might be leaving. Check out the latest behind-the-scenes look at Pacific Rim. Stephen Amell drops hints about Arrow's future. The Walking Dead will never, ever die if AMC has anything to do with it. Spoilers away!
Top image from Man of Steel.
Man of Steel
Zack Snyder discusses the movie's approach to Superman, starting with its traditional take on the Superman costume (give or take the darker blue tones and the absence of red briefs, but I feel like that's forgivable):
When they try to dress him up, put him in jeans and a T-shirt or a leather jacket with an S on it, I go: ‘What? Guys, it’s O.K. It’s Superman. He’s the king daddy. You should all be bowing down to him.' [Man of Steel will] respect the S... He’s a really cool mythological contradiction. He’s incredibly familiar Americana and alien, exotic, bizarroland, but beautifully woven together. All of us, in a weird way, are that same kind of contradiction — no one’s that simple. If you follow him back logically and try to understand him you end up at a scifi solution."
And producer Christopher Nolan acknowledges the irony that Snyder is making a movie about the original superhero after making a movie adaptation of the ultimate superhero deconstruction in Watchmen:
It’s ironic but it’s a very productive irony. You’re dealing with a filmmaker who has deconstructed this mythology and now has to reconstruct it. That’s a fascinating challenge for him... [Zack has an] innate aptitude for dealing with superheroes as real characters. That was what a new approach to Superman required. He understands the power of iconic images, but he also understands the people behind them."
There's a bit more at the link. [Comic Book Movie]
The Avengers 2
There's been a bunch of rumors going around over the past week that Black Panther will appear in the Avengers sequel, potentially as a new team member alongside the already confirmed Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver. Various reports from the Cleveland set of Captain America: The Winter Soldier suggest that this is basically just common knowledge among the film's crew, which seems kind of unlikely but isn't totally impossible. There was also a recent radio interview with the Chairman of Cape Town Film Studios in which said chairman indicated that Marvel Studios wanted to film at least portions of The Avengers 2 in the South African city.
This has in turn been used as evidence that the next film will feature Black Panther and Wakanda, although it should be pointed out that, even if all this is true, Cape Town may not be portraying any part of Africa — after all, Chronicle was shot entirely in and around Cape Town for budgetary reasons, and that was set in Seattle. Oh, and there was also a random report a week or so ago that Black Panther was on some briefly glimpsed production grid of Marvel Studios's upcoming projects, with a supposed release date of 2015. Make of all this what you will, although I'd probably say that if you hear three insubstantial, implausible rumors all about the same thing, that still doesn't add up to a single believable rumor. So yeah, grains of salt all around. [Comic Book Movie]
Then there are wild, hard-to-believe rumors that exist only to contradict even wilder, even harder-to-believe rumors. Case in point: there have been some rumblings recently that Jeremy Renner would not be returning as Hawkeye and that the role would be recast, supposedly due to his mildly critical (and more or less accurate) comments about his role in The Avengers. Now there's a counter rumor — from Perez Hilton, of all people — that quotes an inside source as saying these rumors are entirely false and that Renner is still "very much a part of the Marvel family.” None of this involves a single on-the-record source, and while Marvel is certainly not above the occasional recasting (accompanied by, in Edward Norton's case, some less than classy public comments about their former employee), it's probably best to just assume that Renner will be back in the Avengers sequels until we hear something concrete to contradict that.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Toby Jones offers this vague hint about his returning character, Dr. Armin Zola:
"All I can say about it is that I was pleased to be brought back. I thought I might be—because you'd know better than I do—but Zola finds a way to defeat time and you won't be disappointed with the way that's been treated in the film, that's what I would say."
Here's a behind-the-scenes featurette, entitled "Drift Space."
Mockingjay Parts 1 and 2
Summit Entertainment has released this brief synopsis for the final two films in the Hunger Games franchise, which are set to be directed by Catching Fire's Francis Lawrence and written by erstwhile Buffy the Vampire Slayer actor Danny Strong:
In MOCKINGJAY PARTS 1 & 2, we follow heroine Katniss Everdeen’s journey as she leads the districts of Panem in a rebellion against the tyrannical and corrupt Capitol. Ars s the war that will determine the fate of Panem escalates, Katniss must decipher for herself who she can trust and what needs to be done, with everything she cares for in the balance.
Glenn Morshower recently revealed at the Texas Frightmare Weekend that he would not be returning to Transformers 4, despite the fact that Paramount included him in a recent official press release on the movie's cast. Morshower's announcement, in which he cited scheduling conflicts as the reason for his absence, actually seems to predate Paramount's most recent update, so it's possible it's since been resolved. We will of course bring you all the latest, up-to-the-minute updates on this most important of questions, unless we totally forget to do so like the time we promised we'd do the same with Josh Duhamel's casting. [TFLAMB]
The wonderful Bernard Cribbins says he actually contacted the production team about a possible return in the 50th anniversary special, but he says it's not to be:
"No, I'm not. I rang Cardiff [where the Doctor Who production unit is based] a little while ago and said, 'Am I going to be involved?' and they said, 'Well no. We're shooting at the moment and maybe something later on but at the moment, no.' I would love to get back into it. It would be nice."
The most interesting part of that is "maybe something later on," which is probably just the production team being polite — or Cribbins softening their response — but it could conceivably be a hint that brief cameos from Doctor Who luminaries are still on the cards. Admittedly, that's a rather, shall we say optimistic interpretation, and Cribbins himself recognizes the inherent logistical challenges:
"I think it's impossible. They can't even think of including everybody who's taken part in Doctor Who from the beginning up until now. There'd be hundreds and hundreds, they'd all get twelve and a half seconds each [laughs]."
Here's an interview with Chris Chibnall, who most recently wrote "Dinosaurs on a Spaceship" and "The Power of Three," in which he discusses the possibility of returning for season eight. [Blogtor Who]
The Walking Dead
AMC CEO Josh Sapan says the show will run and run until it's no longer profitable, and possibly even a bit beyond that:
“We hope that zombies live forever and we’ve just begun to find out what the post-apocalyptic world is like, so that we’ll be sitting here at the Barclays conference in 2022 discussing the fact that Walking Dead is not over."
Once Upon a Time
Co-creator Adam Horowitz says the show will still explore Storybrooke in the third season, even though the season two ended with almost every main character leaving town:
“Some people got on a ship, some stayed behind. And what happened to those who stayed behind is just as important as what’s happening to those on the ship. What’s going to happen to [Belle]? Who’s left with her? Who might she meet in Storybrooke?” Horowitz poses. “Those are all things that we intend to explore.”
Star Stephen Amell says there's still a long way to go before Oliver can claim the name Green Arrow:
There’s a reason why we don’t call [Oliver] Arrow, Green Arrow yet — because he’s not that person. He was a vengeful, stubborn myopic individual this year, and he has to grow, because his way didn’t work. He had moments of success but ultimately failed, so he’s got to become a better version of himself.”
He also suggests that Tommy's death will represent a serious challenge to Oliver and Laurel's recently rekindled romance, which, yeah, it really ought to:
“I would think that a gigantic caution flag has been thrown up, for him having any type of meaningful relationship with anybody. If Sara was a big wedge between [Laurel] and Oliver, I can only imagine what would happen because of Tommy.”
On the assumption that there's really no logical way that this could refer to the Justice League, I invite you to figure out what Roy Harper actor Colton Haynes means by the following statement:
"A few of the most important DC characters are going to be coming to 'Arrow.' And quite possibly working in a team together."
The Vampire Diaries
Showrunner Julie Plec says it still hasn't been completely decided how Claire Holt's Rebekah will divide her time between The Vampire Diaries and The Originals:
"We do have the ability to use Rebekah on either show in the beginning. We will see when we start writing how much of her we’ll see before she heads off to New Orleans. When we get back, we might see [Matt and Rebekah] still on their trip. When Matt gets back to Mystic Falls, his whole world will have changed. I can’t wait to see what comes out of that adventure and how he re-adapts to life at Mystic Grill."
She also says nobody in Mystic Falls will know that Bonnie sacrificed her life to bring Jeremy back to life:
"Nobody knows the truth. There’s going to be some explaining to do and it’s not necessarily going to make his return to his old life very easy."
American Horror Story: Coven
Scream 4 actress Emma Roberts has reportedly joined the cast for American Horror Story's witch-centric third season, in which she will play "a self-involved party girl by the name of Madison." Her costars include returning players Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Lily Rabe, Frances Conroy, and Taissa Farmiga plus new additions Kathy Bates, Angela Bassett, Patti LuPone, and Gabourey Sidibe. Just about the only male currently cast is actually Roberts' real-life boyfriend, returning cast member Evan Peters. [TV Line]
Here's a sneak peek at the next episode, "Instinct," which airs June 3.
Additional reporting by Katharine Trendacosta and Charlie Jane Anders.