Hero Express: Iron Man 3 Casting, Thor 2 Finds a Villain, & The Dark Knight Returns First Images!

Welcome back to the Hero Express, your one-stop sometimes SPOILER filled shop through the top five stories in comic based Film & TV news!

Iron Man 3 Casting Palooza!

One of the problems of most comic book movie sequels, at least the one talked about by rabid comic fans the most, is the inclusion of too many villains. Spider-Man 3 suffered from this, as did Schumacher’s Batman films to a certain degree. Even Iron Man 2 was claimed to crowd the movie with too many villains like  Justin Hammer, plus the weird combo of Whiplash and Crimson Dynamo. So you’d think they would steer clear of that and bring us a central villain for Iron Man 3. Apparently, that is not the case.

“You’re shitting me…”

It’s been rumored that a couple of villain roles may have been announced alongside Ben Kingsley’s “Not the Mandarin’ who is clearly going to be the Mandarin. It was even announced along with the casting negotiations of Andy Lau‘s character who:

“represents China’s technology sector – and will use China’s armored heroes to HELP Iron Man defeat “The Mandarin” who is seen as a terrorist against both the US and China.”

So let’s talk villains. Apparently James Badge Dale is in talks to play Lt. Col. Eric Savin AKA Coldblood, while Ashley Hamilton is up for the role of Jack Taggert AKA Firepower. No word yet on how these villains would factor into the story of Extremis, which the film is based upon.

A character who does fit in nicely with Extremis might be played by Rebecca Hall, who I love. Here is the description of the character:

The role is said to be that of a scientist that is the intellectual equal of Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark. Although it’s not confirmed, it’s possible that the part is Dr. Maya Hansen, a character responsible for the “Extremis” nanotechnology that is said to be a key part of the sequel’s focus.

And finally, some of the best casting is the rumored role for William Sadler, who is awesome. My best guess is he would play Sal Kennedy, a mentor figure to both Tony Stark and Maya Hansen in the Extremis series, although he was allegedly doing some costuming with Guy Pearce. Oh, and finally finally Jon Favreau will be returning as Harold ‘Happy’ Hogan, the role he placed himself in for the first 2 movies. This is fine with me.

Kick-Ass 2 Shaping Up!

Not a ton of news has been released except for the small matter of direction. Jeff Wadlow (Never Back Down, Cry_Wolf) will be directing from a script he wrote, and apparently has the full support of Mark Millar and Matthew Vaughn. Vaughn directed the first but due to his commitment to the X-Men: First Class sequel opted out of KA2. Wadlow explained a little about his take on the film, and adapting the comic:

“It’s been an interesting process because for those of you who know the property really well, the movie takes some significant liberties with the first comic book,” he said. “Then Mark did the sequel to the comic book which is ‘Kick-Ass 2.’ So I had sort of this movie and the comic book and I had to find the intersection. An adaptation was quite a challenge, but one that I really enjoyed and loved.”

“I think the most important thing that’s gonna change from the ‘Kick-Ass 2’ comic to ‘Kick-Ass 2’ the movie was just really finding an emotional story to tell. Because what I certainly loved about the first film, and what I think elevated it above most comic book adaptations, is the heart and the emotion in the film. It was sort of my challenge as the filmmaker and storyteller to find something as emotional in the second film and I think we have some stuff that people are gonna really respond to.”

And on the involvement of Chloe Moretz, who is kind of blowing up Hollywood right now:

“Well, nothing is official yet. But I had breakfast with Chloe two weeks ago and she’s read the script and she’s very excited about what we’re doing with Hit-Girl. If you’ve read the comic, you know, she gives up being Hit-Girl, which was a brilliant idea I thought on Mark’s part,” Wadlow said. “It’s something I explore quite deeply in the movie because what happens in the comic is she sort of steps away from the story in many ways and she’s sort of sidelined while [Kick-Ass] is working with Justice Forever and [Red Mist] is becoming the motherf—er.”

“But I was quite interested in what happens to her when she’s not being Hit-Girl. Her story is a major, major part of the film and she’s excited about the ideas and we’re in talks.”

Thor 2 Casts Unknown Villian!

It looks like Thor 2 might be welcoming Mads Mikkelsen to the sequel. I think he would make a mean villain alongside Tom Hiddleston’s Loki. Hiddleston has been pretty busy lately, but you can’t have a Thor movie without him. Come on. No word as to who he could be playing, but I think he would make a pretty great Malekith the Dark Elf.

Per Variety, Casino Royale baddie Mikkelsen is in talks to star as the main villain in Thor 2.  Though it’s unknown what role Mikkelsen will specifically play, Hiddelston’s Loki character is said to still have a big part in the film as an antagonist.  Mikkelsen is a Danish actor who is probably best known as the villain in Casino Royale, but also had a strong supporting role in 2010’s Clash of the Titans and starred in Nicholas Winding Refn’s Valhalla Rising.

And a little from Kevin Feige on the direction of the movie:

“[The heart of the movie is] Thor and Jane, to continue that dynamic.  Really they were only together for three days, and do they love each other? Do they like each other? Do they know each other?  We’re acknowledging that that love story in the first movie was sort of a quick crush, essentially, over the course of three quick days in the middle of the desert.  And [the heart of the movie is also] the relationship between Thor and Odin, which does change drastically as it did over the course of the first movie, and picks up and continues from there.”

This has nothing to do with the movie. I just felt like sharing.

Tons of Dark Knight Rises Images! Tons!

There are a lot of TDKR images. Pretty sure I already made my point about that.

From GeekSoulBrother:

A secret poster from Batman-News:

And finally banners from SuperHeroHype:

July is going to be one hell of a month.

Images from The Dark Knight Returns Animated Movies!

This is a moment that fans have been waiting for a few decades to experience. One of the most influential and greatest stories in Batman legend (brought to us by Frank Miller) is the next to join the already awesome DC Animated Features. And in what I believe to be the best decision ever, it will be released in 2 parts. That means we are getting the full story here people. Although I am curious as to whether or not they will be using anything from the less influential The Dark Knight Strikes Back. GeeksofDoom reports:

The Dark Knight Returns, the groundbreaking 1986 miniseries that took Batman in a bold and startling new direction and became one of the hallmarks of modern comic book storytelling, will provide the basis for the next animated Batman movie. The original series took place in the future where an aging Bruce Wayne, now 55 years old, emerges from retirement as Batman to rescue Gotham from the clutches of a rampaging street gang called the Mutants. Soon not only does he find himself battling crazed punks, but also the supposedly rehabilitated Harvey Dent, his oldest archenemy the Joker, and even his longtime ally Superman, now an agent for the U.S. government.

I’m crazy excited for this. Let’s look at some pictures as well as some of the voice cast announced:

Recently the studio made public the two-part movie’s voice cast, and while there are some interesting and familiar names among the cast list its the actor chosen to voice Gotham City’s masked vigilante that is sure to inspire the greatest confidence in this project from fans.

Peter Weller, best known for playing the cyborg policeman RoboCop in three movies (the later two were written by Frank Miller oddly enough, although his scripts were altered heavily during production) as well as The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai and the upcoming Star Trek 2, will be providing the raspy vocals for Bruce Wayne and his iconic alter ego.

Ariel Winter of the hit ABC comedy series Modern Family has been cast as the voice of Robin, who in this story is a 13-year-old girl named Carrie Kelley.

Wade Williams (Prison Break) is voicing Harvey Dent/Two-Face while comic actor Michael McKean (This is Spinal Tap) also joins the cast as Dr. Wolper, the psychiatrist who releases the Joker from Arkham Asylum to reign unholy havoc on a Gotham already on the verge of an apocalyptic collapse.

David Selby of the original Dark Shadows soap opera as well as well as David Fincher’s The Social Network has also signed on for an as yet-unspecified part, though it’s possible he could be playing Commissioner Gordon.

The part of the Joker has not yet been cast and it’s still unclear if the movies will feature appearances from Superman, Selina Kyle, and Oliver Queen, a.k.a. Green Arrow, all of whom play integral roles in the Dark Knight Returns miniseries.

Awesome. Can’t wait. Robocop as Batman? Somewhere inside me Nerd trolls are fighting over how cool this is.

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