A key returning Captain America cast member is spotted on the sequel set. Do we already know the villains of Doctor Strange? Brad Bird's retro epic Tomorrowland is zeroing in on its female lead. How will Transformers 4 incorporate China into its story? And the BBC explains when they'll reveal the Twelfth Doctor. Spoilers below!
Hayley Atwell has been photographed on the present-day Cleveland set, reprising her role as Peggy Carter. Unsurprisingly, she appears to be wearing some old age makeup. Check out the photo and the latest set video below. [Cleveland Heights Patch]
When asked about the rumors that Kick-Ass star Aaron Taylor-Johnson might play Quicksilver in the sequel, Joss Whedon offered a diplomatic no comment. He did, however, offer some thoughts on how Man of Steel — which he hasn't yet seen — might end up influencing the film, albeit in a somewhat roundabout way:
"I have not had a chance to catch Man of Steel yet, but I'm going to. When you're making a large scale superhero film and a large scale superhero film comes out, you have to go and see it to make sure you're not imitating it. That you don't have a giant plot point or set piece that is exactly the same as yours. And it does happen a lot and we say, 'Oh, we better zig instead of zag.' You have to watch it for that, but also, to get a bit of inspiration. You either have a great time or you think, 'Well, I can top that', but I'm definitely going to have a great time."
Take this with a very generous heaping of salt, but there's a rumor out that the villains of the Doctor Strange movie — which hasn't even yet been confirmed as officially happening — will be Dormammu as the lead bad guy, Karl Mordo as a key supporting henchman, and a Giant Mindless One as the heavy muscle. You can check out the link for more details on these characters, but again, it's best to treat this with skepticism when this project is still so far down the pipeline. [Latino Review]
Here's a pair of official set photos from director Marc Webb. [Spinoff Online]
Hellboy star Ron Perlman describes his character, Hannibal Chau:
"He pretty much wears his heart, his wallet, on his sleeve, and he's adorned with the accoutrements of someone who puts his things that he owns and has managed to collect through his meanderings in bold display. He's rather garish, and larger than life, more style than substance."
Director Guillermo del Toro explains why Perlman is such perfect casting for the role:
"I think the moment you have a guy that is called Hannibal Chau and Ron shows up, and he's from Brooklyn and he's been selling black market organs, you know the whole story... That's all I need to know. If it's any other actor, there's a lot more explaining to do. But when Ron comes in with that look, you can make your own story and it'll be as compelling as anything I can invent. You do a little weightlifting with the audience."
There's more at the link. [IGN]
Brad Bird's live-action retro epic, which stars George Clooney and Hugh Laurie, is reportedly down to two final contenders for the female lead. Secret Circle's Britt Robertson and Terra Nova's Naomi Scott are both set to perform full hair and makeup tests for the role of Casey Newton, described as "a rebellious teenage girl who comes to Clooney's character, a disgruntled inventor, for help on a quest. Observers say the part has potential to be star-making." [Heat Vision]
The search is underway in China for at least four supporting actors to complement already announced cast member Li Bingbing. The characters, all of which require English proficiency, are referred to as "action guy," "tech nerd," "sexy goddess," and "cute girl," which collectively could pretty much double as the names of all possible characters in Michael Bay films, give or take an "asshole authority figure" or an "offensive comic relief." Producer Marc Ganis adds that the Chinese aspects of the movie's story are more than just a cynical way to ensure the film gains a coveted Chinese release slot, and that the film won't make a China-specific cut a la Looper or Iron Man 3:
"There are quite a few Chinese elements that are already in the film, but the four actors and actresses have not yet been selected. So we want to make sure the roles that they are given are roles that are best suited to their specific talents. There will be one version, the version Michael Bay wants the world to see. The American version will be the version that is shown here in China, a single version."
The movie will reportedly film in Beijing and Hong Kong as well as potentially some other Chinese cities, and there will be "significant product placement for Chinese brands, starting with a massive dragon-shaped hotel-apartment-and-mall complex called Pangu Plaza near the 2008 Beijing Olympics site." So, in case you were worried this fourth movie would forever alter this franchise's artistic integrity... nah, it's about the same as always. [Los Angeles Times]
MGM has now confirmed its long-rumored plans to update the original Poltergeist. Here are the key excerpts from the official announcement:
Gil Kenan ("Monster House") is set to direct from a screenplay by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer, David Lindsay-Abaire (whose recent credits include "Oz: The Great and Powerful"). The film is being produced by Sam Raimi ("Evil Dead") and Rob Tapert ("The Possession") via Ghost House Pictures, along with Roy Lee ("The Strangers"). Nathan Kahane ("The Grudge") will serve as executive producer.
In a revisionist take on the classic horror film, a family struggling to make ends meet relocates to an outdated suburban home and is confronted by an angry spirit who kidnaps their youngest daughter and challenges them to band together to rescue her from the clutches of evil. "Poltergeist" is scheduled to begin production this Fall. [Deadline]
The 2013 Christmas special — otherwise known as Matt Smith's final story — is due to begin filming this fall, and the word from the BBC is that the identity of the 12th Doctor will be announced before the start of production. As such, the timeline for the announcement of the new Doctor is likely sometime in either August or September. [Radio Times]
Here's a clip from the next episode, "The Sun."
FlashForward's Michael Ealy explains what drew him to the role of a synthetic police officer on the upcoming sci-fi show from former Fringe showrunner Joel Wyman:
I had a meeting with Joel [Wyman]. At first I was worried about playing a synthetic, a droid. Because I had never done that before, and was thinking about, "Well, where does this droid go? Can he have a love interest? Can he have sex?" Those kinds of things. You start thinking, "What is there left to do?" Especially over five or six years. What's he gonna do? It was sitting down with Joel and understanding – from the design to when he was in existence, and how his model was terminated. Then to see him come back and how his character views it as a second chance… But there was a challenge. I didn't want to do what other actors have done. I don't want to say certain names, but I wanted to avoid certain clichés as a droid.
So you didn't find inspiration in things like Blade Runner or Battlestar Galactica? I looked at Blade Runner, and definitely was inspired. But Dorian to me was Jason Bourne and Robert Patrick in Terminator 2. I tried to mix those two together, and just an ounce of Jeff Bridges in Starman. Just an ounce. Those are the three characters [with which] I tried to make Dorian work. So it was quite the challenge needless to say. Obviously acting opposite Karl [Urban] was when I really started to discover Dorian, because he's almost human as well [laughs].
Showrunner Brian K. Vaughan discusses the underlying appeal of Stephen King's novel:
Take something like "Under the Dome." It has a hooky, accessible, high-concept [premise]. But I think Stephen's books are always much more complex than that. Maybe on the surface, it looks like [the high-concept ideas] will translate easily, but they don't. There's a lot lurking underneath, and I think that's why Stephen King is so popular. He's much more than just plots or cool concepts. His novels are emotionally immersive in a way that I think everyone who reads him understands. But I think people who don't read Stephen King, they just think of horror and the scares. But there's a real, aggressive humanity to his work. He just loves people so much, and it really comes through.
Stephen King has talked about ecological themes and the political allegories he worked into "Under the Dome." Could you talk a little bit about how those elements work within the show?
Yeah, I hope that they're all in there and yet it will never feel preachy or heavy-handed. Again, one of the reasons I love Stephen King is because his stories let you talk about big, challenging concepts, like class structure, like distribution of resources, like the environment. But you're doing it in a really fun, fast-paced, exciting way. You get to talk about these ideas without feeling you're being preachy. If anything, [the feeling] was to push the ideas even further. [The writers have talked] about guns under the dome, and getting to do a thoughtful story about gun control in the confines of this otherworldly dome has been very exciting.
There's more at the link. [Huffington Post]
Star Stephen Amell discusses the future of Oliver and Laurel's relationship in the wake of the Undertaking and Tommy's death:
"Based on everything that happens in the finale, I think it's going to be difficult for Oliver and Laurel to just pick up and go on like nothing's happened. They had a wedge between them which was Sarah and all that Oliver did to her and now [everything] that's happened with Tommy and the aftermath of that, it's going to be extremely difficult for them to just pick up from where they were. In the comic books [Green Arrow and Black Canary] connect, but we're still dealing with 'Oliver and Laurel' and 'Oliver and Thea' and 'Oliver and Moira' and basically Oliver and everyone except Felicity and Diggle - they're not operating on a truthful level. So we're never really going to know what Oliver's relationship with Laurel can be until everything is on the table. And 'when' everything is on the table and 'if' that actually happens, I have no idea."
He also acknowledges another an alternative possibility, namely a relationship with Felicity Smoak:
"We just talked about how much Laurel doesn't know about Oliver but there's a history there. With Felicity, there's not necessarily a history but in terms of women in his life at present, she knows him better than anybody. Which is not saying a great deal but...I don't know, I'm very touched that the internet has such a fascination and the fanbase has such a fascination with Felicity and Oliver and I think it really speaks to Emily Bett Richards because when she first played the character in episode 3, I remember [Oliver] meeting her and coming around the corner — and we didn't really rehearse full speed — so when I came around the corner and she did her whole [Felicity thing] I cracked a smile which may have been the first time my character had smiled in the entire show. So I give all the credit to her. The writers will do what the writers will do."
Additional reporting by Amanda Yesilbas and Charlie Jane Anders.