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News Shotgun 2/23

  • Working Title for Bond 25 revealed: It was reported this week that the working title for the upcoming Bond 25 is Shatterhand, which was an alias of Blofeld in Ian Fleming’s novel You Only Live Twice.  Shatterhand is apparently in contention to also be the movie’s official title and seems to imply that Christoph Waltz’s villain will return from Spectre.  Cary Fukunaga is directing the movie that is expected next April.
  • Natalie Dormer joins Penny Dreadful: City of Angels: The former queen of Westeros is heading to Showtime for the next chapter of Penny Dreadful, City of Angels.  Dormer will play Magda, a shapeshifting demon who appears in many forms in 1938 Los Angeles.  Showrunner John Logan is back for City of Angels and Daniel Zovatto, Jessica Garza and Johnathan Nieves have been cast so far.  The show is debuting sometime next year on Showtime.
  • Space Jam 2 gets a release date: The long in development Space Jam sequel is finally arriving on July 16th, 2021 with Lebron James joining the Looney Tunes for another game of b-ball.  Ryan Coogler is producing the movie and Terence Nance is directing.
  • Stallone starring in superhero movie Samaritan: MGM has picked up a dark superhero movie called Samaritan that will star Sylvester Stallone.  Stallone is also producing the movie with his newly formed Balboa Productions and Escape Room and Season of the Witch screenwriter Bragi F. Schut is writing the script.
  • Haunting of Hill House follow-up is Haunting of Bly Manor: Netflix’s excellent and highly popular The Haunting of Hill House is getting a second season but it’s going the route of American Horror Story or Channel Zero by becoming an anthology horror series.  The next season will be The Haunting of Bly Manor and feature a completely new cast of characters and is an adaptation of The Turn of the Screw by Henry James. Showrunners Mike Flanagan and Trevor Macy are back for season 2, which will debut sometime next year on Netflix.
  • Halo series gets a director: Showtime’s adaptation of Halo has gotten a new executive producer and director for multiple episodes in Otto Bathurst.  Bathurst most recently directed the critically and commercially panned Robin Hood movie but also has worked on Peaky Blinders and Black Mirror.  The show is supposed to start production sometime this year.
  • New roller coaster in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Islands of Adventure in Universal Orlando is getting a new ride this summer with Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure.  The new ride is a full roller coaster that will let visitors travel with Hagrid as they encounter various magical beasts.  The ride opens on June 13th.
  • Netflix buys The Wandering Earth: If you follow international box office at all, you know that The Wandering Earth out of China is a massive juggernaut, making over $603 million in only two weeks of release and now Netflix has bought the rights to release the movie internationally.  The movie is based on a sci-fi novella and is about humanity joining together to create massive thrusters that will push the Earth away from the dying Sun and find a new home somewhere else in the universe.
  • Chris Hemsworth playing Hulk Hogan in a new Netflix movie: Netflix is developing a Hulk Hogan biopic and Chris Hemsworth has signed on as the Hulkster.  Todd Phillips is directing the movie and it will focus mainly on Hogan’s early years and his rise to superstardom.  Michael Sugar, Bradley Cooper, and Eric Bischoff, the former head of WCW, will be producing the movie.
  • The Lonely Island going on tour for the first time: Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, and Akiva Shaffer are going on tour for the first time ever this year.  The Lonely Island will perform in eight cities starting in June and tickets will go on sale March 1st unless you are a “verified fan” on Ticketmaster, which will allow you to purchase tickets on February 26th.
  • Nightflyers canceled by SyFy: George RR Martin’s Nightflyers has been canceled by SyFy after one season.  The show was released in binge watching style on SyFy On Demand and aired across ten straight nights at the end of last year but did not generate much buzz or viewership, which was not good for SyFy as all reports say that it was by far the most expensive show they’ve ever produced.
  • The Storyteller coming back with Neil Gaiman: A cult classic by Jim Henson, The Storyteller was an anthology series that adapted classic European folklore and Neil Gaiman has signed on to lead a reimagining of the show that will expand to folklore from around the world.  The Jim Henson Company is also involved and this will be their second major upcoming series along with Netflix’s sequel series to The Dark Crystal.
  • DC Comics putting out zombie book DCeased: Slightly late to the party, especially since Marvel Zombies is over a decade old, DC is throwing zombies against their iconic heroes in a new limited series called DCeased.  The setup is that some sort of techno-organic virus from Darkseid infects Earth’s technology and causes anyone who looks at a screen to start tearing off their own skin and turning into 28 Days Later-style rage zombies.  Tom Taylor is writing the book, and previously wrote DC’s Injustice series, with artists Trevor Hairsine, Stefan Gaudiano, James Harren, and Rain Beredo.  The first issue is out on May 1st.
  • The Banana Splits coming back as SyFy horror movie: Hanna-Barbera’s live-action variety show from 1968, The Banana-Splits, is coming back to SyFy but as a new original horror movie that seems almost certainly inspired by Five Nights at Freddy’s.  The new movie follows a young boy, Harley (Finlay Wojtak-Hissong), whose mother is a producer on The Banana-Splits TV show.  The family attends a taping of the show for Harley’s birthday but things go horribly wrong.  Bingo, Fleegle, Snorky and Drooper, the original Banana-Splots characters, will appear and the movie is directed by Danishka Esterhazy. The movie will arrive on DVD/Blu-Ray from Warner Brothers before airing on SyFy channel.
  • Obi-Wan series rumored for Disney+: As the launch of Disney+ draws closer, there are rumors that one of the original shows on the streaming service could be an Obi-Wan show.  There have been rumors of some sort of spin-off featuring Obi-Wan, possibly with Ewan McGregor returning, since Disney announced they were doing spin-off movies, like the ill-fated Solo.  Disney+ has The Mandalorian and a Rogue One spin-off series featuring Cassian Andor officially confirmed for the service and there is also a slew of MCU shows that will feature the actors from the films, like Tom Hiddleston and Elizabeth Olsen.
  • Blumhouse possibly developing new Scream and Hellraiser movies: After their successful reboot of Halloween and becoming the new home of the Universal Monsters, Blumhouse is apparently looking to expand even more and Jason Blum confirmed that they’ve had talks about getting the rights to Scream and Hellraiser to make new films based on those series.  A remake of Hellraiser has been in development hell for years, with Dimension, the current rights holder, having to put out shitty, direct to video sequels just to maintain their rights.
  • Man in the High Castle ending in Season 4: Amazon confirmed that the upcoming fourth season of The Man in the High Castle will be its final season.  The show is based on the Phillip K. Dick novel that follows an alternate history where the Allies lost World War II and Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan divided the world in half, including sharing control of North America.
  • Ghostbusters/Transformers crossover arriving in June: Coinciding with a figure that debuted at Toy Fair (and also had a cameo in this past week’s episode of The Goldbergs), IDW announced a Ghostbusters/Transformers cross-over comic mini-series that will begin in June.  Erik Burnham, Dan Schoening, and Luis Antonio Delgado, the team behind IDW’s Transformers comics, will be behind the cross-over and it features the Transformers tracking a mysterious Cybertronian signal to Earth and discovering that it’s coming from something supernatural that requires the expertise of the Ghostbusters.  Also at some point, Ecto-1 becomes a Transformer named Ectotron.
  • Netflix cancels The Punisher and Jessica Jones: The final two Marvel shows on Netflix fell this week as the company officially canceled The Punisher and Jessica Jones.  The Punisher just had its second season and Jessica Jones has its third and final season later this year.  The move seems to mainly be a tactical move against Disney and their Disney+ service.  By canceling all of their Marvel shows, Netflix apparently had a non-compete clause in the deal that keeps the characters from being used for 2 years and Netflix is also losing all Disney content and didn’t want to keep paying them for licensing Marvel characters or in any way advertise for a new and powerful rival.

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