Marvel has had a pretty big presence at CCI for the last few years, and this year was no different. While the Marvel Studios panel pretty much blew me away this year, that wasn’t the only crop of news the company delivered. We’ve got a few short films, and some new details on Marvel’s Animation slate.
Item 47 First Clip!
First I want to talk about Item 47, a Marvel One-Shot that will be released with The Avengers Blu-Ray. Item 47 stars Grizzly Girl Lizzy Caplan and Jesse Bradford, that guy from those movies.
The film centers on a pair who find a leftover weapon from the Chitauri invasion of New York in The Avengers. They manage to get it working and decide to do the sensible thing. Go on a crime spree. Not much else was known about the short film besides this picture that was released soon after it was announced, featuring the always awesome Lizzy Caplan holding the weapon.
We knew there would be more on the short coming to us at Comic-Con, and we weren’t disappointed at all. Here’s the first clip from Item 47, courtesy of Collider:
I’m even more excited for The Avengers Blu-Ray now. Producers hope the characters will remain part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but at least the short film gives as a glimpse at life after The Avengers, at least until Iron Man 3 comes out.
Marvel Animation Discusses Upcoming Slate of Shows!
I haven’t been very impressed with Marvel Animation over the last few years. First they cancel The Spectacular Spider-Man in order to bring us the underwhelming Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon on DisneyXD. Then they cancel one of the greatest Marvel cartoons ever; The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest H, and replace it with another DisneyXD program.
Avengers Assemble will more closely follow the style of The Avengers film and looks to have some decent character designs, but I will forever miss Avengers: EMH and that is unforgivable. I digress. Also previewed were Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H., Which is sure to be a kid friendly look at a group of characters who shouldn’t be kid friendly.They also talk a little bit about Ultimate Spider-Man, which I won’t discuss, and some of the planned motion comic projects coming from Marvel Knights. SuperHeroHype reports:
The first thing shown off is a series they’re billing as “Marvel Mash-up.” This series will serve as short form cartoons to air between shows wherein Marvel animations from the 1980s will be taken and dubbed over with new voices. The video shown at the panel was of a Fantastic Four-centric episode.
Next, [Jeph] Loeb switched gears to their Hulk centric cartoon, “Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H.” He confirmed that the team will be made up of Hulk, Red Hulk, She-Hulk, Skaar, and A-Bomb, and the pilot script was written by none other than Paul Dini. Again, expect the test footage of this that was shown to appear online later today.
Another area touched on by Loeb is the upcoming “Avengers Assemble” cartoon. He confirmed that “Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes” was NOT cancelled and that it was always envisioned to end and be bridged together with the new cartoon.
“The cast has a lot of similarities to the Avengers movie, as they want to reach and appeal to the broadest audience possible.”
Jumping gears from television, Loeb started to talk about their Marvel Knights Animation brand. He confirmed that the remainder of Joss Whedon’s “Astonishing X-Men” will be coming out later this year (which broke earlier this week). They also announced what the next projects are for the motion comics: Inhumans by Paul Jenkins and Jae Lee; Wolverine: Origins by Joe Quesada, Paul Jenkins and Andy Kubert; Eternals by Neil Gaiman and John Romita, Jr.; Wolverine: Weapon X by Jason Aaron, Esad Ribic, and Ron Garney; and Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk by Damon Lindelof and Leinil Francis Yu.
The new motion comics that were announced are pretty much the only thing I’m looking forward too. The fact that they are calling Avengers Assemble a sequel to Avengers: EMH might just give it a passing grade, but we will have to see. Let’s move on.
Thomas Jane Not Done With The Punisher!
An interesting treat came out of Comic-Con when fans were treated to a short film that featured Thomas Jane stepping back into a familiar role. FilmSchoolRejects reports:
In what was a combination reveal of a short film and Tim Bradstreet’s new design for The Punisher skull, we got to see something awesome that may never be shown again.
The short starts with a man, played by Tom Jane, asleep in a van on dirty street. While attempting to do his laundry, he witnesses several acts of brutality by a street gang. First, they rough up a working girl and then they start beating up a kid who refuses to sell drugs for them. The man heads into a liquor store where he buys a Yoo-Hoo, informing the clerk he’s sober now. The clerk, played excellently by Ron Perlman, notes the look in the man’s eyes and, from his wheelchair, tells of how he tried to intervene once, but that it wasn’t worth it. Take five punks off the street and soon five more will take his place.
The man sips his Yoo-Hoo and then decides to do something about – he buys a bottle of Jack Daniels. He doesn’t take a single sip, rather, he uses it to beat the thugs half to death. When the guns come out, the man displays an awesome awareness of ass kicking, smashing faces, shooting faces, and otherwise just destroying anyone who gets in his way. Finally face to face with the gang leader, he roughs him up something fierce – breaking his leg in two or three different places, before dousing him in bourbon. He asks “What’s the difference between justice and punishment?” He sets down a lit Zippo style lighter and walks away, leaving the bloody man laying in a puddle of booze.
The man returns to the laundromat to gather his belongings while the roughed up prostitute stands over the downed gangster – and lights him ablaze as the man walks out like a badass in front of the flames. The kid calls out to him – “You dropped this” – a piece of laundry. He tells the kid to keep it, “It’s got a hole in it.” The kid examines the black article of clothing, unfolding it to reveal: The Punisher.
The audiences ate it up, loving every bit of violence, every broken bone, every smashed face. It was a true hard-R short film experience, showing The Punisher we know from the comics and the one we long to see on the screen.
That sounds awesome, and I really hope we do get a chance to see it.
[UPDATED] Well, look at that. Looks like we will get a chance to see it.
Marvel has the rights back to the Punisher, so time will tell if we see any cinematic movement from the character, but its clear Thomas Jane isn’t quite done with him.