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Newsbites: The sequels and remakes edition!

Newsbites: The sequels and remakes edition! July 24, 2008

Time for another batch of newsbitey goodness.

1. The Hollywood Reporter says Darren Aronofsky has signed on to direct the “reinvention” of RoboCop (1987; my comments).

Variety reports that “MGM is keeping the logline under wraps”. However, last week, Bloody-Disgusting claimed that it had learned the new film would be more of a sequel than a remake; supposedly, it will take place about two decades after the earlier films and be kind of a next-generation thing, similar perhaps to the Dan Aykroyd version of Dragnet (1987) or the Samuel L. Jackson version of Shaft (2000).

2. MTV Movies Blog, Risky Biz Blog and ComingSoon.net report that Disney surprised Comic-Con audiences today by showing some test footage from the upcoming sequel to Tron (1982; my review) — featuring Jeff Bridges as not one but two different characters, at least one of whom might be a villain! Oh, and they’re calling it Tr2n. Because it’s the second movie, see.

3. Variety and the Hollywood Reporter say Philip Noyce is attached to direct a remake of Captain Blood (1935).

Personally, I have always thought that The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938), one of my official ten favorite films of all time, was sort of a remake of Captain Blood — it, too, features Errol Flynn as an outlaw who woos Olivia de Havilland and crosses swords with Basil Rathbone, and it even features an improved version of one of the earlier film’s bits of dialogue. If memory serves, both films include a scene where de Havilland says to Flynn, “You speak treason!” In Captain Blood, Flynn replies, “I hope I’m not obscure.” But in Robin Hood, he simply replies, “Fluently.” Classic.

4. Victor Morton lists several reasons why the new big-screen version of Brideshead Revisited will probably “suck pretty hard.”

5. Patrick Goldstein says Peter Morgan, the Oscar-nominated writer of The Deal (2003) and The Queen (2006) — both of which were directed by Stephen Frears and starred Michael Sheen as British Prime Minister Tony Blair — is planning a third film, currently called The Special Relationship, which will look at Blair’s friendship with Bill Clinton.

6. The Associated Press reports that the new video game Star Wars: The Force Unleashed will take place between the prequels and the original trilogy — and will even include new “pivotal” story elements:

In the game, players become Darth Vader’s secret apprentice and use The Force to hunt the remaining Jedi.

“Force Unleashed” allows gamers use supercharged Force powers to bust through objects, wield a lightsaber, blast lighting bolts and fling around foes. The game will also change the way fans view “Episode IV” through “Episode VI _ Return of the Jedi,” LucasArts project lead Haden Blackman told The Associated Press at the E3 Business and Media Summit.

“There’s a couple of big twists and turns in the story,” said Blackman. “One revelation in particular really impacts the rest of the saga as a whole. It goes way beyond filling in gaps. We try to make a bridge on every level. The story has a real implications on ‘Episode IV.’ In some ways, without the apprentice, ‘Episode IV’ couldn’t happen.”

7. The Associated Press says Wallace & Gromit will also be getting a video-game tie-in:

“We’re certainly going for the clay look with this,” Telltale Games CEO Dan Connors told The Associated Press. “Clay presents a challenge if you really get into the detail of it. For example, adding fingerprints in a medium where there aren’t any is one of the discussions of how far we should go with the game’s detail.”

8. The Hollywood Reporter says Leonardo DiCaprio is partnering with Warner Brothers to make a feature film based on Twilight Zone (1959-1964), the famous anthology series that was previously turned into a film in 1983.

9. Variety says New Line and John Waters have agreed to develop a sequel to the musical version of Hairspray (2007).

10. Variety says MTV is developing a remake of The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975) that “will use the original screenplay by Jim Sharman and Richard O’Brien but may also include music not featured in the original.”

11. Variety says a third Harold & Kumar film is in the works.

12. The Hollywood Reporter says Tim Burton has hired an Australian actress named Mia Wasikowska to play the lead in his 3-D adaptation of Alice in Wonderland for Disney.

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