Tonight continued the Slayer’s return to television, playing both sides of a coin that equally flawed on either end. Bridget the ex-drug addict on the run from the law, and Siobhan is the socialite turned to the dark side after the loss of her son (we assume).
When I first heard about Ringer, I wasn’t sure what to make of it. Sarah Michelle Gellar is, of course, TV’s Sweetheart after her epic portrayal of Buffy; but I had some reservations about her small screen comeback. First of which, the fact that this show is airing on the CW. Any network that will give Tyra Banks her own show should be burned to the ground, but I digress.
So last winter we learned that Warner Brothers was planning to reboot the 1992 film Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The reboot was not based of the original’s success, but instead the cult following created by the TV show that started in 1997, 5 years after the movies. The creator – Joss Whedon – was offered a chance to get involved and passed. So let’s start off by saying this: Without Joss Whedon this shouldn’t even be made.
Whedon created the characters, wrote, produced, and directed the movie, wrote, produced, and directed the show, and writes the comics. This is his baby, it is why we know his name. Along with the spin-off show Angel, the world of Buffy is vast, and after the Twilight craze, in today’s Hollywood, it was only a matter of time till some intrepid studio head decided this needed a re-boot. It just doesn’t seem right without Joss at the head.
BUT, it’s getting made anyhow, and as ‘Buffy Fans’, Michelle and I have decided to take a look at the upcoming project and let you know who we think could fill the shoes once worn by Kristy Swanson and more recently, Sarah Michelle Geller…
So first, Michelle’s thoughts…
Buffy Can Do The Single Ladies Dance!
A rumor recently surfaced about who might play ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ in the new Warner Bros. movie reboot. The rumor named Glee star Heather Morris as the top pick for the new Ms. Summers.
According to the magical internet machine in my living room, she was singled out because of her background in gymnastics and dance, making her athletic. She also would be a pretty damn good-looking Buffy… in my opinion. Although Warner Brothers sent a statement saying that the Heather Morris rumor is untrue, and that discussions about casting won’t occur until after the script is completely done, it got me to thinking about who would make a good on-screen Buffy.
Which brings me to my next point:
Michelle’s TOP 3 PICKS FOR BUFFY (other than Heather Morris):
Eliza played Faith on the original Buffy TV series. I think not only did she do a great job, but she would know the role better than anyone. She is athletic and attractive, but has an incredible fierce attitude that would be necessary by a badass such as Buffy. The only problem? Trying to get her to dye her hair.
Meester has had guest roles on shows such as Veronica Mars, 24 and Entourage, as well as starring in the new thriller The Roommate, where she played… well… a psycho. She did an amazing job, and has had experience being weird, yet totally together. She would be a great choice. She is fit and young and is very professional. She would fit more into the type of character that Kristy Swanson played in the movie… a tad ditzy and cutesy, but she gets her slay on.
Stone has impressed me greatly in her somewhat short career. She has proven herself time and time again… she doesn’t do shitty movies. She showed her athleticism off in Zombieland which is one of my favorite movies. She would bring a new funny modern twist to Buffy because she has a ‘tude, and we know she can kick some ass. Her brassy demeanor and gorgeous presence makes me think that she would be a prime candidate for such a remake.
All of this being said, if Joss Whedon isn’t involved, I know that a lot of fans will not see this remake. It will be hard to get over that detail, but I do believe that no matter what, if they cast it properly it will be great. Buffy is a great character.
Ok, so I like Heather Morris as much as the next red-blooded male, and I’d actually be behind her casting – HOWEVER, with no formal training from an acting stand point, and only minimal experience as a secondary character on Glee, I see her as a long shot. And I’m fairly certain the only reason she’s even being talked about, is this:
So, anyhow, as much flack as the show took from non-fans, though out it’s course there actually was some pretty heavy drama from time to time, so bit of acting aptitude should be taken into account for what could turn into a whole series of movies…
Kronner’s Top 3 Picks…
Now, I know what you’re thinking – “Kronner is gonna say Kristen Bell“, but once, you’re wrong. Her name has been thrown around a few places, but she already owned the High School scene for 2 seasons worth of Veronica Mars and I doubt that now, come up on 30, she’d want back down that road. I’ve also heard Summer Glau‘s name, but again, I think she’s past the point of play a teenager. And of course there were the rumors about Megan Fox, but I think her career is headed no where but down from here…
#1. Emily Browning
Sucker Punch was nothing great, but you can’t knock Emily’s performance in it, nor can you say it doesn’t at least qualify her for some consideration here. At only 22 years old, she could easily pass as a High Schooler, and she has both the acting chops and body to meet the demands of the movie. She, as of now, would be my first choice. (Plus ‘Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events’ was throughly entertaining…)
#2. Lyndsy Fonseca
My 2nd choice would have to be the star of the CW show Nikita. Based (obviously) of the French movie La Femme Nikita, Lyndsy plays a kick-ass spy on the show, and I’m sure she could play a kick-ass Slayer in the movies. Not to mention her choice of roles over the last few years (Heroes, Kick-Ass, Hot Tub Time Machine) give the impression she’d be all about killings some vamps…
#3. Evan Rachel Wood
Wood has plenty of experience with vampires playing the Queen of Louisiana on True Blood, but as her schedule has just cleared up, this is a 23-year-old who could easily pass for 16, especially when you consider that Swanson was 23 when the original movie came out. Wood can act, looks the part, and would no doubt be available.
The role of ‘Buffy’s Watcher’ is an important one, as he is not only the man who trains her, but a father figure as well. Sean Bean, the 52-year-old, recently unemployed star of HBO’s Game of Thrones could be a great fit as the man who must train this generation’s slayer. Maybe ‘dork’ him up a bit, but this would give you an established star with over-lapping fanbases. Most Buffy fans aren’t known for hating on Lord of the Rings afterall…
And while the following characters weren’t in the movie, they made the show work and it’d be strange to not include them…
Xander – Jeremy Allen White: The 19-year-old White plays Lip Gallagher on Showtime’s Shameless, and is easily my favorite character (outside of Emmy Rossum’s boobs), and could no doubt pull off the role of the dorky friend who is infatuated with the Slayer. This results in a truly identifiable character for the guys watching…
Willow – Molly C. Quinn: Quinn, 18, plays Nathan Fillion’s daughter on the ABC show Castle. She’s a brainy redhead who seems almost molded after the original Willow character…you know before all the lesbian Wiccan stuff anyway.
So those are our suggestions, what’d you think? Who is your pick for Sunnydale’s next protector?
Call of Duty – Three words almost universally despised by wives and girlfriends everywhere. Well ladies, things are about to get worse. If it seems your man has been picking the controller up less frequently as of late, I hope you enjoy it while it lasts. Coming May 3rd is the newest expansion for the latest Call of Duty game, Black Ops. This is the second such expansion released for the game, as First Strike is almost 3 months old already. I know a few people I play online with still haven’t bought the First Strike expansion, but personally I’m happy I did, as ‘Discovery’ has become my favorite map in the game. The new add-on is called Escalation.
Here is a quick synopsis:
As indicated by the retailer leak, the DLC will include four multiplayer maps: Hotel, set “on the roof of a Cuban luxury hotel and casino against the vivid backdrop of old Havana”; Convoy, which offers up “intense, close-quarters combat at the scene of an ambushed US military convoy”; Zoo, set in a derelict Soviet-era animal park; and Stockpile, which is set in a small Russian town that contains secret facilities housing weapons of mass destruction.
Also included in the Escalation pack is a new level for Black Ops’ zombie mode. Today’s announcement gave no details on the mode, other than that it will provide a “unique Zombies experience.” However, the previous retailer leak referred to the level as “Call of the Dead.”
Ok, so new maps are always nice, but what’s really grabbing me here is the “Call of the Dead” aspect of the game. Long has the Zombie section of the game been a favorite of mine, and it is in fact the reason I bought both Call of Duty: World at War and Call of Duty: Black Ops. And while it was fun, it was obviously never a real focus for the designers. That’s about to change. Here is the trailer for the ‘Call of the Dead’ section of the expansion…
As our esteemed Technical Editor likes to say: Holy crap.
Not bad at all. Here are 4 luminaries in the Horror/Sci-Fi genre, brought together to voice characters not for a full game, but just a downloadable expansion to the game. That is throwing your budget around. Just look at this cast:
– Michael Rooker made his name with a lot of geeks in Mallrats, however was already established in the horror community for a decade prior with the title role in Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. And for the Zombie connection – he was in the first season of AMC’s The Walking Dead.
– Danny Trejo is one Mexican you don’t want to f–k with, or so he told us in Machete. Machete was of course a spin-off of Grindhouse, and Trejo has been in such classics as Maniac Cop 2, the From Dusk Till Dawn trilogy, and Rob Zombie remake of Halloween.
– Sarah Michelle Gellar is of course best known as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but has also appeared in horror movies like I Know What You Did Last Summer, The Grudge and Scream 2.
– Robert Englund has played Freddy Kruger over 50 times between the Nightmare on Elm Street movies and the TV show they inspired. Plus he has been in other movies like Wishmaster, Urban Legend, 2001 Maniacs, and Zombie Strippers! He is a horror icon.
And all of them helmed by the man most synonymous with Zombies – George A. Romero. If you somehow don’t know who Romero is…well, you’re just not a zombie fan. He is responsible for Night of the Living Dead and all of it’s seemingly thousands of sequels.
You have to think about the landscape of the horror genre in 1996. Several years removed from its last smash hit and fading, Horror fans wanted a reason to go to the theater. The genre was in trouble, and the most successful horror movies of the decade to that point were Silence of the Lambs, Misery, and Flatliners. All released in 1990, and none of which are traditional ‘Horror’ movies. It seemed the old school ‘slasher flick’ had been all but killed the in the late 1980s. Done in by endless sub-par sequels to movies like Halloween, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and Friday the 13th. Audiences had become fed up and the box office reflected it. So when Scream came out, and grossed over $100 million, it was a big deal.
I think it’s easy to forget how big a deal it was now, 15 years removed from its release, because of what came after. Scream fell victim to the same formula that killed its predecessors: Too many mediocre (if not downright terrible) sequels and copycats. In recent years I’ve been involved in discussions where this movie will be brought up and someone will lump it in with the garbage that followed. That however, is simply not fair. Scream was a head above anything that followed through the rest of the decade. From I Know What You Did Last Summer (& it’s own sequel) to Urban Legend (& it’s terrible sequel) to Scream 2 & 3, no movie I can think of has been so copied so quickly.
Scream set a standard for a while. It wasn’t just another teenage slasher flick, it was self-aware. It was a satire of the entire genre that it unintentionally revitalized. They did everything from straight out referencing movies like Halloween and Nightmare on Elm Street by name, to talking about the director of their own movie in a fictional manner. All the while, more subtly throwing nods back to the classics. Skeet Ulrich’s character, ‘Billy Loomis’ should sound familiar to Hitchcock fans who will remember the boyfriend ‘Sam Loomis’ from Psycho. You might also remember one ‘Dr. Loomis’ in the Halloween movies. We get a cameo from The Exorcist star Linda Blair as a reporter, and Sheriff Burke was played by Joseph Whipp. Mr. Whipp doesn’t have much luck protecting kids apparently, as he was also a cop on Elm Street 12 years earlier.
This also came out at a time when it was rare to get A-List cast in a horror flick. I mean, this is what you did to start a career, not once you were established. And make no mistake, in 1996, Drew Barrymore was a bona fide A-List actress and I don’t think she gets credit enough for the success of this movie either. Scream catapulted almost the entire cast into furthering their careers. Neve Campbell and Courtney Cox were already TV stars, but this made them house hold names. Plus David Arquette, Jamie Kennedy, Matthew Lillard, and Rose McGowan all went on to have success after this.
The story was simple enough, small town high school students are being terrorized by a serial killer. He wears a mask and calls to taunt his victims on the phone. That aspect is what has been most played up in spoofs and re-imaginings. So much so that phone companies reported the orders for ‘Caller ID’ tripled after the release of the movie. As the movie progressed and we learn who the killer is (are) we are regaled by the lack of motives. Sidney (Campbell) survives and we’re actually given a pretty satisfying end to the movie. So much so that a sequel really doesn’t make sense. Of course that didn’t stop them from making one.
In fact the movie became watered down by not 1, but 2 sequels. A watchable, but not good sequel in Scream 2, and then the abortion of a movie that was Scream 3. The second movie followed Sidney (Campbell) and Randy (Kennedy) off to college where the movie was once again packed with a good cast and similar formula. In this fictional universe there is a movie based on a book by Gale Weathers (Cox) about Sidney and the events from the original film. This movie with-in a movie is called Stab. Stab inspires a copycat killer to start stalking Sidney and recreating kills from the original killer.
This one has a cast that including Jerry O’Connell, Rebecca Gayheart, Jada Pinkett (Smith), Omar Epps, Heather Graham, and ‘Charlie’ from The Mighty Ducks. It also featured Buffy herself – Sarah Michelle Gellar, and future Arrested Development star Portia de Rossi. But the best parts of the cast were the 2 actors who weren’t yet widely known. First Liev Schreiber, who reprised his role (of about 10 seconds) from the first movie as Cotton Weary, and most importantly, my favorite actor on television – from Justified
Raylan Givens Timothy Olyphant.
In the 3rd movie we were heavy on cameos and big names, like on substance. At the time I did enjoy the presence of Jenny McCarthy and the cameos Carrie Fisher and by Jay and Silent Bob, but I don’t remember enjoying much else. Scream 3 was so bad it not only killed the franchise for the next decade, but the whole genre for a couple of years. After the ware-out provided by all the copies, it wasn’t till the Japanese Horror Invasion started in 2002 with The Ring that the genre felt fresh again.
That quickly faded however, and they went back to the well. This time with a gluttony of remakes. Texas Chainsaw Massacre (& horrible sequel), The Amityville Horror, Friday the 13th, The Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes, Nightmare on Elm Street, and an entire franchise reboot of Halloween.
Now, here we are in 2011, just a few days from the release of Scream 4. The first chapter of the franchise in over a decade, and just as before we’re not short on names. From Sookie to the Cheerleader to Annie Edison, this looks to be full of beautiful women in precarious situations. The most important one of course being my Uber-Crush: Kristen Bell.
I can’t really predict any true level of quality here, but I will say I’m expecting it to be better than the 3rd one was. As long as they’ve worked on it for, they must have learned something from the 3rd movie.
Have a look:
Well I can already say that I hate these new ‘movie geek’ kids. Lame ripoff of my favorite character in the series Randy. They just seem to convoluted to be likable, but I guess we’ll find out Friday.
Anyhow, I’m going to see this opening night because of my attachment to the franchise. I’ll be doing so in hopes it’s not terrible, because I’ve already committed to seeing it a 2nd time with my Secret Agent/G-Man buddy Dave. We watched all the other ones together back in High School, so it only seems fitting that we do this one as well.