The CW might as well just be renamed DC TV with all the shows and DC universe things they’ve got going on. Not that I am complaining at all. The best part about the abundance of the DC universe on the CW is that we get a time slot in advance for the new trailer of Suicide Squad set to release in August of 2016.
That’s right, boys and girls, we’re going back to the mall.
Kevin Smith has announced that a sequel to his cult hit Mallrats is in the works. Smith first hinted at the project on Twitter with the mere mention of a rat.
As you may know, Kevin Smith is a huge Batman fan and weekly presents a podcast called Fatman on Batman as part of his SModcast empire. Each week Kevin Smith invites a creator who is involved (sometime tenuously) with Batman. This week Smith was again joined by famed writer and spiritualist, Grant Morrison for issue #44. Morrison was invited to discuss his favorite Batman stories, and as part of the podcast discussed Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s seminal Batman story The Killing Joke.
Morrison explains to Smith that one of the reasons he loves The Killing Joke is because of the end, where Batman kills the Joker, making it the ultimate Batman/Joker story.
[quote]“No one gets the end, because Batman kills The Joker. … That’s why it’s called The Killing Joke. The Joker tells the ‘Killing Joke’ at the end, Batman reaches out and breaks his neck, and that’s why the laughter stops and the light goes out, ’cause that was the last chance at crossing that bridge. And Alan Moore wrote the ultimate Batman/Joker story — he finished it.”[/quote]
Alan Moore has said in the past that did not intend The Killing Joke to be part of DC comics continuity but at the time it was released, DC did recognize The Killing Joke as canon. Since the DC re-launch of The New 52, DC has played a little fast and loose with what is continuity or not, and there is not yet any definitive answer as to how much of The Killing Joke is part of The New 52, outside of Joker shooting Barbara.
Since the podcast went up late last week there has been plenty of discussion as to whether it was Alan Moore’s intention to have the Batman kill the Joker or, whether there is a subtlety in the ambiguity. Some sites, most notably Bleeding Cool, have gone as far as referencing back Moore’s original scripts and highlighting the fact that there is no reference to the Joker dying in there.
Personally I think everyone is missing the point. Morrison has always stated that he looks at Batman differently from most people. In a past interview with Smith, Fatman on Batman episode #27 Morrison explained that he looks at each period of Batman continuity as a different year in Batman’s life and fits this to how he views the character…
Part of The Killing Joke’s joy is that everyone can draw their own conclusion from the final panels. It is not spelled out in black and white, and it can quite easily fit into most people’s idea of continuity. I look at each arc as a continuity in its own right. You can then take what you want to make the story work for you. If not you can run your head around in circles trying to make it fit.
Whatever your views on The Killing Joke, it still stands today as one of the best, most deftly written Batman stories. Certainly a must have for any comics fan.
Last year Kevin Smith announced his retirement from writing and directing movies following the completion of Clerks III, bringing his career full circle. However, this no longer seems to be the case with Smith recently announcing via his Facebook page that Tusk, a film based on a Gumtree listing. Tusk will go into production in September in LA through Blumhouse Productions, with the intention of having it ready for Sundance 2014.
So what is Tusk?
On the 25th of June 2013, Kevin Smith and Scott Mosier sat down to record episode 259 of their weekly podcast, SModcast, titled ‘The Walrus and the Carpenter’. During the episode Smith highlighted an article he had read regarding a listing on Gumtree from Brighton, UK. A landlord was offering one lucky applicant the opportunity to board with him free of charge with only one small caveat. While living in Alaska the man had befriended a walrus called Gregory and created a “realistic walrus costume” which should fit “people of average proportions”. The tenant would be required to dress in full Walrus get up and act like a Walrus for an hour a day.
The listing seemed to strike a cord with both Kevin and Scott, as for the next hour they indulged in an entertaining flight of fancy revolving around how that premise could make for a truly disturbing ‘Human Centipede’ style movie. By the end of the Podcast Smith and Mosier had named said hypothetical film ‘The Walrus and the Carpenter’. Smith also posed that the film could easily be made by a company such as Blumhouse Productions, the studio that brought us the Paranormal Activity series and more recently The Purge, for $3 million.
Now this is where most of us would stick a pin in it. Not Kevin Smith though. Smith asked his millions of followers to post #WalrusYes or #WalrusNo to get their thoughts on whether people would be interested in seeing the as then fictional film. The answer was a resounding #WalrusYes.
With that in mind, and Clerks III having hit a Harvey Weinstein shaped brick wall, Smith decided to stretch his writing muscles. By the 16th of July Smith had completed the first draft of ‘The Walrus and the Carpenter’, which was now renamed the much creepier Tusk. Smith recently posted on his Facebook page:
“The listing got my creative juices flowing and I began reconstructing the whole thing as an old British Hammer horror film, in which a mad scientist intends to sew some hapless lodger into counterfeit blubber, creating a chimera in an effort to answer the ultimate riddle.”
Eager to share his new script, Smith sent it to Red State star Michael Parks. Parks loved the script and came on board as the character who had evolved from that of the carpenter.
More importantly, Smith also sent the script to Jason Blum at Blumhouse Productions as he had suggested he would during the SModcast. Jason loved the script and agreed to meet with Smith and tour the studios. Within an hour of meeting with Blumhouse, they had agreed to make Tusk with a budget of $3 million. Smith posted the below pic on his Facebook page as inspiration for what will become the Walrus’ lair.
So on the 25th of July, a mere month after first discussing the concept, Kevin Smith officially announced Tusk via his Facebook page. This concept really excites me. I am a huge fan of Kevin Smith movies and I honestly thought that Red State was one of his best so far. It will be great to see him enter the horror territory again with Tusk.
What do you think of Tusk? Thoughts on Smith’s constantly changing retirement status? Sound off in the comments below!
The annual San Diego Comic-Con is one of the most popular and most attended events in the world. Boasting more celebrities than the Oscars, what used to be a place for aspiring artists and vendors has now become home to the most valuable press in the world; grass-roots marketing. By packing all these movie stars in one place, promoting a franchise, and getting the masses to attend, Comic-Con has found a way to garner even more buzz for a film than what was originally thought possible.
Granted, these star-studded events have kind of replaced the entire reason Comic-Con was created in the first place. Still, thousands of adoring and loyal fans make their way to San Diego every year for the much-anticipated event that never seems to disappoint. But for those of us who don’t get to go to the Con every year, we’ve always wondered, right? I mean, it’s hard to not even think about going when it seems so damn enticing.
Leave it to Morgan Spurlock, the Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker known for his near single-handed assault on McDonald’s that resulted in the eventual disappearance of their “Super-Size” option. I actually got to meet and interview Mr. Spurlock last year during promotion for another fantastic film he made, The Greatest Movie Ever Sold. In an attempt to better understand product placement in films, Spurlock learned about selling out by selling out.
Spurlock has always had a knack for taking seemingly normal subjects and creating fascinating stories with them that almost always directly affect his real life. Liver problems in Super Size Me, piles of contracts in The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, and the safety of his ow life in Where in the World is Osama Bin Laden? But for, Comic-Con: Episode IV- A Fan’s Hope, he decides to take a step back and let his subjects do all the talking. It’s an interesting and definitely unfamiliar dynamic for him to take, with all of his previous films anchored by his charismatic personality.
But somehow, in some strange way, he makes it work. By telling the stories of eight Comic-Conners, Spurlock presents us with a truly diverse view of the Con itself, giving the viewer a chance to peek into many aspects of what the Con has to offer. He also intercuts the film with fascinating celebrity interviews from the likes of Kevin Smith to Joss Whedon to Seth Green and many more. By explaining their passion for comics and film, Spurlock really does prove that celebrities are just like us. Maybe even more than we think.
In my opinion, Comic-Con: Episode IV, with its clever and instant homage to Star Wars, is simply a passion project for Spurlock. With an extremely small release that serves mainly online and home providers like iTunes and onDemand, Comic-Con: Episode IV is definitely a step-back for Spurlock, but in a good way. At only 87 minutes, the film is definitely not overlong or boring, and the stories that he sets up are quite interesting. He also doesn’t take the easy way out by giving us a do-or-die situation that forces us to feel sympathetic for the character. As if everyone going to Comic-Con needs to get signed to a label or they won’t be able to pay their rent.
Of course, some more interaction from Spurlock would have been appreciated, but to be honest, this is a film for the fans. It’s fascinating to hear comic geeks just nerd out about movies they love, writers they love, artists they admire, and what influenced their love for certain comics and artists. The film works as a love letter to the fans, but is welcoming enough to invite the casual reader. It lets them know that it’s okay to join the club. We don’t bite, I promise.
Having awoken from their spring break extravaganza at Lake Victoria, the swarm heads upstream where they look to make a meal out of Big Wet, a local water park where when it comes to fun, nobody does it wetter! Thought they came to get wet, get loaded and get some, the staff and patrons get more than they bargained for when they must face the fiercest, most bloodthirsty piranhas yet.
Release Date: TBA 2012
Mind the gap and avoid the shadows; This stop is the Dark Knight Station for January 11th, 2012.
Rumors of a Clearer Bane Voice are False – (FilmDrunk)
In the wake of the DKR prologue, reports sprouted up claiming that Christopher Nolan was already working to clean up Bane’s muffled voice, and theaters would soon be getting the new, clearer audio versions to play for audiences. However, Collider recently went to Warner Bros. and IMAX for confirmation, and both have officially stated that no altered versions of the prologue have been sent.
In the trailer that quickly followed the 8-minute preview Bane was a lot easier to understand, with the majority of viewers issuing a pretty vocal sigh of relief. Personally, I’m still not entirely clear on what Bane is saying in the trailer but I’m not desperately worried. As I’ve mentioned earlier, this isn’t something the entire production team would have missed – dozens of people worked on Bane’s character, not to mention the time and energy spent on audio and editing. It would be impossible for this to be an oversight.
It’s difficult to do with a film as wildly anticipated as The Dark Knight Rises but we all have to sit back and resist judgment for now. We’re picking apart a minor piece of the puzzle that will likely be inconsequential by the time everything comes together. Have a little faith.
Unreleased Footage from The Dark Knight – (/Film)
Here’s a little change of pace: Kevin Smith, of all people, recently sent out a tweet featuring several minutes of unused and alternate footage from everyone’s favorite Batman movie. It includes some clips of Heath Ledger‘s Joker that you might not have seen before.
The few seconds of Ledger that debut here are just as striking as the footage that made it into the final film. It’s a brief reminder of how memorable the character is, and how talented an actor Ledger was. It’s the long shot of The Joker exiting the hospital that does it for me, rekindling the chilling sensation I had when I first saw The Dark Knight‘s Clown Prince of Crime.