At last, we know whom Chris O'Dowd is playing in Thor 2... and it's not whom we thought. Will Harrison Ford join the Blade Runner sequel? Another Star Wars casting rumor gets shot down. Daniel Radcliffe talks Frankenstein. And a Tomorrow People producer warns not to expect a lot of science fiction in the show. Spoilers now!
Batman Vs. Superman
Take this for the wild, unlikely rumor that it is, but Ben Affleck is reportedly campaigning for Larry David to have a role in the film, with even more speculation putting him in the role of fifth-dimensional super-being Mister Mxyzptlk. [Comic Book Movie]
Thor: The Dark World
There are finally pictures of Chris O'Dowd's part in the film, showing him dining with Natalie Portman's Jane Foster (and, at one point, Kat Dennings' Darcy Lewis). There was some speculation that O'Dowd is playing Dr. Donald Blake, the human alter-ego of Thor, but with the release of these photos came an end to that rumor. His character's name is Richard, and he's just there to have a date with Jane. [Comic Book Movie]
Star Wars casting rumors are beginning to resemble the Hokey Pokey: You put the one name in, you put the one name out, you put the one name in and you shake it all about. Today, take out Ben Kingsley, who denied the recent rumors that he'd auditioned for a role:
Oh, what a shame that I wasn't awake during the audition. It's passed me by entirely... I have no recollection of it whatsoever! I do apologize to the producers and director, but I'm afraid that I have no recall of this.
Blade Runner 2
Kingsley's Ender's Game co-star, on the other hand, is confirming some casting rumors. Harrison Ford told IGN that he's been in talks to return for Ridley Scott's sequel:
Yeah, we've been chatting about it... I truly admire Ridley as a man and as a director, and I would be very happy to engage again with him in the further telling of this story.
To the Stars
James Gray's next film is officially titled To the Stars, a near-future science fiction story about a group of astronauts who go on a journey through the solar system while tracking down a rogue colonist. The script was co-written with Fringe's Ethan Gross. While the plan is to start filming in 2014, it's not entirely clear if there's a studio attached to it right now. [Collider]
Here's a video of Daniel Radcliffe discussing the new project, including the fact that his Igor is going to have a whole new backstory. [MTV]
Executive producers Marc Guggenheim and Andrews Kreisberg said that we'll be seeing a lot of fall-out from season one this season:
How is Starling City dealing in the aftermath of the Undertaking?
Kreisberg: Not well. It took it on the chin in the finale. As bad as the city was in Season 1, it's even worse now. That's part of Oliver's journey this season. We always say, "So goes Oliver, so goes the city." He's in a very dark place and he really realizes in the premiere episode that he can't be the vigilante anymore. It's not enough to cross names off the list and target the one percent. That didn't work. He failed last year. This season really needs to be about something else. The city needs a hero. It needs a symbol of hope. That's why we titled Episode 1 "City of Heroes." That's our title for the season in an odd way, because it's really about heroes coming out of the woodwork like Oliver. Even the villains this season are going to view themselves as the hero.
Will Moira Queen (Susanna Thompson) stand trial for her involvement in the Undertaking?
Kreisberg: Yes. There will be some courtroom scenes. Moira behaved very badly last year. Everybody is really dealing with the repercussions of that. This season, for Moira, a lot of it is about redemption. Oliver wasn't the only one who failed last year. Moira really failed. As much as this season is about Oliver stepping into the light, it's about Moira trying to find her way back and how that impacts her children and the company and herself is so much of her journey.
Let's talk about the introduction of Isabel Rochev (Summer Glau), whose name was actually on Oliver's list last season. Did you know then that we'd meet her in Season 2?
Kreisberg: I'm so proud of the things that we thought of in the pilot that we knew we were going to do in the season, like the Deathstroke mask, and in Episode 2, the glyph, we knew all that. But I really cannot say with a good conscience that we knew we would get to Isabel Rochev. We just filled up that first page with names. Now, it's turned into a bit of a happy coincidence because we're so excited to have her on the show. Summer owns the screen. Oliver has a lot of antagonists this year. Last season, Oliver didn't care about being Oliver Queen. This season, since he's taking a leadership position in the company, he's going to find that that's very difficult. As much as he's saving everyone anonymously at night as the Arrow, people are throwing tomatoes at Oliver Queen during the day. A lot of his antagonists, including Sebastian Blood (Kevin Alejandro) and Isabel Rochev, they're really enemies for Oliver to overcome more than the Arrow. That's a brand new dynamic that the show has this season.
Will it be addressed that she was on the list?
Kresiberg: Oh yeah! We're not morons! [Laughs] Sometimes these things happen by accident and they turn out to be the best thing for us. As much as we had planned, some of what happened last year was completely by surprise. None of us had any conception of Felicity before Episode 3 and now you can't imagine the series without her.
They also talked about what it means to have Black Canary and the Suicide Squad this season:
How will the introduction of Black Canary (Caity Lotz) push Laurel in a new direction?
Guggenheim: You'll get your first glimpse of Black Canary in the premiere. Laurel needed a bit of a makeover. Last year, as a result of her job at CNRI and her relationship with Tommy, it sometimes felt like she was in a different show. One of our main goals this year was to really bring her into the fold in a way that made her an integral part of the stories we were telling. Black Canary's appearance is going to coincide with Laurel really struggling with a great number of things. We're throwing a lot of things at Laurel this year.
Roy seems to be coming into contact with Black Canary.
Kreisberg: Roy has not given up his night job of going out and looking for trouble. He actually connects with the Arrow very early on in the season, who sets him on a new mission. When we find Roy in the first episode, he's floundering a little bit. He's trying to find his way and he really gets his purpose set for him, which is exciting. He and Thea (Willa Holland) are still dating. For everybody who found themselves in a bad place after the events last season, Thea is actually in a really good place. She's running the nightclub. Roy is working as a busboy at the club and she says to him, "I control both your paycheck and your sex life." Thea has really grown up during these five months. No more Catholic School girl outfits for her.
How did the decision to bring the Suicide Squad on come together?
Guggenheim: We introduced A.R.G.U.S. in Season 1. We also introduced Deadshot (Michael Rowe). We're thinking about how to expand the Arrow's Rogues Gallery, and Bronze Tiger (Michael Jai White) felt like he really fit into our world. We took a step back and realized that we were in spitting distance of the Suicide Squad. As with all things, we always have to be really careful not to let our geek selves drive everything. It has to be at the right pace for the show. We've got some really cool ideas for how to bring Deadshot back into the show. You're going to see that around Episode 6. We're hoping to get some new viewers in Season 2, so we want to repopulate our world. The hope is that we're moving in the right direction towards the Suicide Squad.
Kreisberg: Right now, we're taking it on a person-by-person basis. We have Deadshot as the leader of the Suicide Squad. We don't have any definitive plans to bring them all together. But, as always with these things, we see what people like and don't like.
There's a ton more at the link. [TV Guide]
Agents of SHIELD
Executive producer Jeffrey Bell says that, while he's aware of the show's slide in the ratings, after just a few weeks, the creative team's not worrying about it:
And I can't worry about that. On the creative side, all we go is, "Can we make a really good show?" I think we've done that. I think the second episode was very entertaining, and all the ones we've built, I feel really good about. That's the part I can control. Those were crazy numbers the first week. I just don't see that happening in today's world on a weekly basis.
And he wants everyone to know that they should be adding minutes to their DVR recordings every week:
Part of our storytelling on this show is going to be a tag every week. We need people to know about that. The show ends, the S.H.I.E.L.D. eagle comes up, there are nine hours of commercials because it's TV, and then before we go to the next show, we're almost always going to have another minute, minute and a half of something, and those will be different from week to week.
One of the things we want people to know is, "Stick around for the tag." Having a special one like we did early is also to tell you, "Pay attention to that." I know when "Iron Man" did that after all the credits, a lot of the people left and didn't know they should have stayed. Now you watch a Marvel movie, and everybody stays until the end. We're going to be doing that, and we want people to know. Sometimes it'll be funny, sometimes it'll be a mythology thing, sometimes it'll be a self-contained thing, or an extra little reveal about something that was in the episode.
He also explained how they incorporate the greater Marvel mythology into the show:
Then we also try and mine the Marvel comic universe. If we're looking for a doctor, we might say, "Is there a doctor in the Marvel Universe, who would be fun if the fans hear that character's name? Can we make it that person and bring that quality to it? Is there a weapon or a cool tech thing from that universe that we could use that is cool on its own, but if you're a Marvel fan, you go, "Oh my god, they did that!" So we're trying to do it that way. [. . .]
We're in contact with Marvel Studios; we pitch them the stories we're telling, and they'll give us feedback from that. "Here might be a cool thing," or "We'd rather you not do that, because that's the plot of our next movie." It's a relationship, and Marvel's been very cool about that. Going forward, we'd love to keep finding little things to bring to people, but keeping it so everyone can enjoy it.
David Lyons says that Monroe and Charlie are going to spend a lot of this season working towards an understanding:
I mean, this is the guy who's been responsible for the death of her father and her brother and the destruction of her life as she knows it. He understands completely what Charlie's perspective is and understands that she wants to kill him and to an extent he probably has a death wish himself... and now [he's going to] fight hard and as well as he can to try and bring her into the fold and make her understand.
I think we share some moments together in which they start to talk about their grievances and there's a reticent mutual understanding that they can possibly come to.
He also reveled that Monroe's meeting with Miles will happen pretty quickly and that there's a "psychological shift" that happens in Monroe as a result of working for the good guys. But creator Eric Kripke hints that this may not be enough to save the character:
He is the continent's most wanted man and so we play that and we ultimately pay that off. That ultimately the law catches up to him.
Giancarlo Esposito also explained what his character's going to be up to for much of the season:
The plan is to go undercover, all the way to the top. He’s on a mission now, because all he can think about is his beloved [wife] Julia and her skin melting off her bones. And he is hateful. He knows that a big organization was responsible [for launching the nukes], and he wants to avenge her death. It is going to be a ride this season, my friend. Oh my goodness….
And more from Kripke, who says we'll learn all about Titus and what the death of all those rats meant:
You’ll learn more about who Titus is, what he wants and what he’s been doing.
It’s all part of the mystery of what happened with the nanotech, what happened in the tower and ‘How did our heroes in effect change the laws of physics?’ Fireflies are a part of it, rats are a part of it, and the vision that Aaron saw of Ben is a part of it.
More at the link. [TV Line]
The Tomorrow People
Executive producer Danny Cannon says that this version is distinguished from the original by being less of a science fiction show:
Our version of it is very different. It takes the premise of ordinary people with exceptional abilities and then we run with it a little further. [What makes it different is] the stakes. We’re a little less sci-fi. We’re a little more grounded. But it’s a larger show with a larger scope.
And producer Julie Plec says to get ready for a love triangle between Stephen, Cara, and John that could turn into a quadrangle with the introduction of Astrid:
As Cara’s point of view gets more and more human [and] grounded in humanity as a result of Stephen’s heroism, John is going to notice the bond between them and maybe not like it so much.
Astrid is that person that you have in your life that you want to be able to be open with and tell everything to, like the Joey to his Dawson, [It's that time where they] lay on the bed and open up and tell [their] whole life stories before things even turn sexual or romantic. [And] the first thing [Stephen has] got to start doing is telling [Astrid] lies, blowing her off and missing their hangout dates.
More at the link. [TV Line]
And here are some very blue cast posters. [Up and Comers]
Here's a poster. [Spoiler TV]