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News Shotgun 1/18

Posted on January 18, 2020 by

  • Animated Mortal Kombat movie on the way: The new live-action Mortal Kombat is in production right now but Warner Bros developing an animated film as well in the vein of the recent DC Animated films.  Titled Mortal Kombat: Scorpion’s Revenge, the movie will star Joel McHale as Johnny Cage and Jennifer Carpenter as Sonya Blade along with Patrick Seitz as Scorpion, Steve Blum as Sub-Zero and Jordan Rodrigues as Liu Kang.  The movie is expected to arrive sometime in the first half of this year.
  • Bad Boys 4 in development: Bad Boys for Life is crushing the box office currently with an expected opening of around $70 million and Sony is already developing a fourth film in the series.  Bad Boys for Life screenwriter Chris Bremmer is working on a sequel script and Sony hopes Will Smith and Martin Lawrence will return as Mike and Marcus.
  • National Treasure 3 gets a screenwriter: Fans have been waiting 13 years for any news of a new movie in the National Treasure series and now it seems like it might finally be happening as the aforementioned Chris Bremmer is working on a script for the sequel.  Producer Jerry Bruckheimer has been trying to get a third movie greenlit for years.
  • Oscar Isaac starring in Ex Machina adaptation: Oscar Isaac is going from one Ex Machina to another as he’ll star in the upcoming adaptation of Brian K. Vaughn’s comic that was announced last week.  The movie will be titled The Great Machine to avoid confusion with that other Ex Machina and Isaac will star as Mitchell Hundred, a former superhero with the ability to communicate and control machines who becomes the mayor of New York City.
  • Disney kills the Fox name for movie studios: The Fox name is no more, at least on the movie side of things.  Disney announced that 20th Century Fox studios will be 20th Century Studios and Fox Searchlight will become Searchlight Pictures.  Both studios were part of the merger between Disney and Fox.
  • Hank Azaria will no longer voice Apu on The Simpsons: Hank Azaria confirmed at a recent TCA panel for Brockmire that he was going to be retiring the Apu voice he has done for the last 30 years.  It’s not 100% known what will happen with the character as far as not appearing at all anymore or possibly shifting to a more “appropriate” voice actor to do a more realistic Indian accent.
  • Better Call Saul renewed for a final season: Better Call Saul will be back for a sixth and final season.  AMC renewed and confirmed the news ahead of the premiere of the fifth season on February 23rd.  There was also news that Dean Norris and Steven Michael Quezada will return as Hank Schrader and Steve Gomez in this upcoming season.
  • Disney wants Taika Waititi to develop a Star Wars movie: Currently working on Thor: Love and Thunder, Disney is very interested in having Taika Waititi develop a Star Wars movie.  Taika guest-starred as IG-11 on The Mandalorian and directed the season finale.  It’s not clear if this is something that Kevin Feige would be involved with, as Disney wanted him to help develop new Star Wars films along with continuing to shepherd the MCU.
  • Peacock launch details: NBC’s new streaming service Peacock has revealed release date and pricing info.  The service will be available to select Comcast customers on April 15th and then will roll out nationwide on July 15th, right before the Tokyo Olympics.  There will be a free version that will feature ads and only have a curated selection of the content available, a $5 ad-supported version that will have all available content and a $10 no ads premium version.  The service will feature next-day broadcasts of NBC network shows, movies, and original shows.  One of the major reveals this week is that there will be a MacGruber series exclusive to Peacock with Will Forte returning as the ridiculous action hero.
  • Aquaman animated miniseries coming to HBO Max: WB/DC is continuing to expand the world of Aquaman, which includes a sequel and potential spin-off and now will have an animated miniseries on HBO Max.  James Wan is producing Aquaman: King of Atlantis, a three-part animated series that will debut on both HBO Max and DC Universe.  It will pick up after the movie and follow Aquaman’s first day on the job as King of Atlantis.  It’s not clear if any of the cast from the film will return to do voices for the miniseries.
  • Video Game Delays: A few big early 2020 games have been pushed back for more development.  Cyberpunk 2077, the latest massive RPG from CD Projekt Red, has been pushed from April to September 17th.  Square Enix’s Marvel’s Avengers has been delayed to September as well, arriving on September 4th.  It was originally going to be out on May 15th.
  • Mindhunter on indefinite hold: Critically acclaimed David Fincher series Mindhunter on Netflix is in a weird limbo state after news this week that the casts’ contracts ran out and Netflix declined to renew them.  The show is not officially canceled but this is not a good sign for a third season of the series.  Fincher is still very much in on Netflix, working on an original movie called Mank and producing season two of Love, Death, and Robots.
  • Amazon not going forward with The Dark Tower series: Amazon has decided to not go forward with their series adapting The Dark Tower.  The show was going to be separate from the movie adaptation and be a prequel following the origins of The Gunslinger, Roland Deschain.  Amazon had ordered a pilot instead of their usual straight to series order and apparently did not think the show was at the same level as their upcoming Lord of the Rings and Wheel of Time shows.
  • Game of Thrones prequel arrives in 2022: The Targaryen focused Game of Thrones prequel, House of the Dragon, is arriving in 2022 according to HBO.  The show is based on George RR Martin’s side book Fire & Blood, which detailed how the Targaryens took over Westeros three centuries before the start of the Song of Ice and Fire saga.
  • Amazon developing spy series Citadel: Amazon is developing a spy thriller from the Russo Brothers called Citadel that will star Richard Madden and Priyanka Chopra.  The interesting thing is that Amazon is developing different versions of the same show for different countries, so there will be an Italian, Indian and Mexican version of the series as well.
  • The CW orders full seasons of new shows: The CW has given two of their new shows series orders.  Superman & Lois, starring Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch, who have been involved in Supergirl and the crossovers, and a reboot of Walker, Texas Ranger with Jared Padalecki both skipped the normal pilot process and will be getting full seasons.
  • Amazon announces casting for Lord of the Rings series: Amazon has announced fifteen cast members for it’s upcoming Lord of the Rings prequel series that will be set in the Second Age of Middle Earth.  Robert Aramayo, Owain Arthur, Nazanin Boniadi, Tom Budge, Morfydd Clark, Ismael Cruz Córdova, Ema Horvath, Markella Kavenagh, Joseph Mawle, Tyroe Muhafidin, Sophia Nomvete, Megan Richards, Dylan Smith, Charlie Vickers, and Daniel Weyman are the announced cast, although there are no character details about who any of them might be.
  • Billie Eilish performing the next Bond theme: Billie Eilish has been officially confirmed to be the performer of the No Time to Die theme song, working with composer Hans Zimmer and her brother Finneas O’Connell.  Eilish will be the youngest person to ever perform a Bond theme.
  • Westworld back in March on HBO: Westworld’s third season will begin on March 15th on HBO.  The third season adds Aaron Paul to the cast and follows Dolores as she begins her plans for host domination in the real world.  Thandie Newton is also back as Maeve, who is continuing her tour of Westworld parks and seemingly ends up in a World War II-themed area.  Jeffrey Wright, Tessa Thompson and Ed Harris are also returning and Vincent Cassel, Michael Ealy, and Marshawn Lynch are joining the cast with Paul.
  • The Rock developing a sitcom about his childhood: Dwayne Johnson is developing a sitcom for NBC that will be based on his childhood and follow his younger self.  The Rock will appear in every episode but it will most likely have to be some sort of quick intro or voiceover, it seems inconceivable that he would have time to co-star in a sitcom along with all of his other projects.  NBC has ordered 11 episodes of the series.
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