Tagged: DVD

Interview: Jamie Bamber on the End of “Battlestar Galactica” and “Pulse 2”

Interview: Jamie Bamber on the End of “Battlestar Galactica” and “Pulse 2”

Actor Jamie Bamber has had a diverse and successful career, gaining noteriety playing Lt. Archie Kennedy in the Hornblower series of TV movies, working in HBO’s Band of Brothers and guest appearances on the series Cold Case and Ghost Whisperer. However, Bamber’s career rocketed into the spotlight when he took the role of Lee "Apollo" Adama in the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica television series — which is soon to broadcast its final season on the Sci-Fi Channel.

During the recent San Diego Comic-Con, I had a chance to speak to Bamber about his upcoming direct-to-DVD feature film Pulse 2: Afterlife and Battlestar Galactica. We discussed what made him interested in Pulse 2, how he feels about the end of Battlestar Galactica and what moments from the show were his favorites.

COMICMIX: Jamie, what can you tell us about Pulse 2: Afterlife?

JAMIE BAMBER: It’s like Kramer vs. Kramer in an armageddon backdrop, featuring a dad who is trying to put his life back together. He’s working on his relationships and putting them back together in the aftermath of an Internet-fueled apocolypse zombie scenario.

CMix: What made you take on this film?

JB: I had time. I liked the character and I could relate to what he’s going through. I can understand and empathize with a dad and his fear for his child in a dangerous world.

CMix: Having been on such a strong ensemble show like BSG, playing the lead in a film must have been appealing…

JB: I liked the idea of fronting a movie on the quiet, which as an actor is quite a useful thing to do without it being everywhere. This is also a straight-to-DVD project, which also appealed to me.

CMix: You’ve finished shooting on Battlestar now, right?


SDCC: Jeph Loeb Presents ‘Heroes’ Panel

The NBC show Heroes went from fan-favorite to afterthought very quickly during last year’s strike-impaired season two. The cast and producer Jeph Loeb set about rebuilding momentum with an energetic panel at Comic-Con.

From the L.A. Times comes word that a full episode was shown and it did the trick:

Tim Kring came in with a briefcase handcuffed to his wrist. He held aloft a DVD, the DVD for the premiere of season three’s villains-themed offerings.

Then we got to see "The Second Coming."

It’s a great episode, and it should draw back those who’ve dropped off. It may even bring in new viewers. And if not, maybe you’ll want to watch simply because, as the guy in my row said, "Hayden is hotter than ever!"

If you’re inclined, there are some spoilers in the link.

Del Toro’s ‘Hellboy 2’ Diary

Del Toro’s ‘Hellboy 2’ Diary

Over at the New York Times, reviewer A.O. Scott takes an almost apologetically positive stance on Hellboy 2: The Golden Army. Among the many things he compliments is director Guillermo del Toro’s extensive use of puppets in lieu of CGI.

It’s one of the things I’ve long loved about del Toro’s movies, an appreciation driven into overdrive by the extra DVD wih the first Hellboy movie that explained how the puppets were made.

As part of the Times’ coverage of the new flick, they have extensive excerpts from del Toro’s production diary, as well as audio of del Toro himself explaining the entries.

And of course, don’t forget to check out the multitude of Hellboy 2 coverage right here at ComicMix.

WWC Interview: Brian Azzarello on ‘Batman: Gotham Knight’

WWC Interview: Brian Azzarello on ‘Batman: Gotham Knight’

On his way to becoming one of the most sought-after writers in comics today, Brian Azzarello has achieved a great deal of success and notoriety with his series 100 Bullets, which garnered him multiple Eisner Awards. In addition, his work on Hellblazer, Johnny Double, Batman/Deathblow and Lex Luthor: Man of Steel continues to cement his reputation as a writer and creator of comics.

Along with Brian’s many accomplishiments in comics, he’s also one of the six writers contributing stories to the upcoming animated feature film Batman: Gotham Knight. Brian’s segment, "Working through Pain," shows us a somewhat non-violent side of the Dark Knight and showcases a story in which Bruce Wayne learns techniques from a mysterous woman that will serve him well and help him deal with the physical toll exacted upon him during his years as Batman.

I caught up with Azzarello at Wizard World Chicago to ask him a few questions about writing his segment, how he feels about Batman as a character and how he thought the film turned out.

COMIX MIX: Brian, what is it that makes Batman such an endearing character?

BRIAN AZARELLO: Well, he’s not realy endearing to me.

CMix: You don’t like him?

BA: I think he’s a tragic character. Maybe that’s why he’s more compelling than endearing. He’s all about his flaws.

CMix: But you’re a fan?

BA: Oh, yeah, but I like his villains a lot, too. Almost more than I like him. I think his villiains are all different pieces of him. That’s something that makes him really interesting.

CMix: How did you get involved in the Batman: Gotham Knight film?

BA: I was asked. They explained the film to me, how it would be structured with six stories, and asked me to come up with an idea. I chose to focus more on Bruce Wayne, and they liked my pitch. That’s pretty much it.

CMix: Is there a difference between writing something for print and for a movie?

BA: Not for me. My comic scripts are pretty sparse in terms of art direction, the blocking and such. I don’t get into a ton of detail and more leave it up to the artist in a lot of ways. So it was a pretty easy transition for me to make.

CMix: How do you think the film turned out?

BA: I liked it. I thought it turned out well considering it was six different stories. I thought it held together very, very well. As a writer, I really try to trust the people I work with. I try to leave them plenty of room so they can bring their strengths to the work.

I think that happened in this film, and definitely for my segment – the animation is just amazing.

Batman: Gotham Knight is scheduled for a July 8 release on DVD.

Editing Challenges Trouble ‘Watchmen’ and Other Movie News

Editing Challenges Trouble ‘Watchmen’ and Other Movie News

Fans have long wondered how any director could condense Watchmen into a feature-length film (I always liked the suggestion of doing it as an HBO miniseries), and now director Zack Snyder is feeling that pinch.

The Geek Files blog has a comprehensive entry about Snyder’s difficult editing task. The current length sits at an epic three hours, and this is already after the Black Freighter storyline and other material has been excised into a wholly separate film that will come out as a companion DVD.

[Snyder] added: "I’ve lost perspective on that now, because to me, the honest truth is I geek out on little stuff now as much as anybody. Like, people will go, ‘We’ve got to cut. You don’t need that shot of Hollis Mason’s garage sign.’ And I’m like, ‘What are you talking about? Of course you do. Are you crazy? How will people enjoy the movie without s**t like that in it?’

"And we had Dave Gibbons in there, too, and he would draw on our books, and it was just sick cool.

"And so then you come back from that experience, and you go to the studio, and the studio’s cool, don’t get me wrong, but they don’t love it like we do. Right? It’s like just a movie, like, ‘Oh, we have this movie, Watchmen, and it’s ****ing long.’ Like, ‘What are these superheroes? They look crazy.’ So you have that experience. So for me, right now, I’m in the middle of that."

Snyder has already said he is planning a 4hrs 30mins Director’s Cut DVD edition of the movie. There will also be a companion DVD called Tales of the Black Freighter, based on a background story depicted within the panels of Watchmen.

There’s also some other comics movie news:

The New Jersey Star-Ledger reports some anecdotal evidence that successful films are boosting sales of actual comics at shops.

And the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette offers an early look at Wanted and another article on the best and worst comic-to-film adaptations.

Viral Marketing and ‘Futurama: Beast With a Billion Backs’

Viral Marketing and ‘Futurama: Beast With a Billion Backs’

The Earth is being invaded!… sort of. While Futurama: The Beast with a Billion Backs hit DVD shelves this week, the giant titular beast, Yivo, (pictured here) has been making his way across America all this week with "invasions" in various cities.

From ilovebender.com:

CENTURY CITY, CA – The Yivo invasion has arrived! Crash landing in key markets nationwide, Yivo has a tentacle span of 20 feet, and will be in constant tentacle motion! In Boston, Detroit, San Diego, Minneapolis and Chicago, each Yivo inflatable will be accompanied by “Space Babes” who will be distributing out-of-this-world promotional items, including T-shirts, tattoos and signed DVDs.

A “Mega-Invasion” is approaching Philadelphia when a 30-foot-tall Yivo takes over Love Park. In addition to “Space Babes” and giveaways, visitors will have a chance to meet Bender himself and get “Yivo-ized” via green screen!

According to various reports, Yivo’s next big invasion is planned for Wizard World Chicago this weekend. You can find out more about Yivo, shlis or shler lovers, check out shlis or shler (trust me, I’m typing that correctly) on MySpace and Facebook. You can also check out my ComicMix review of Futurama: The Beast with a Billion Backs.


‘Incredible Hulk’ Director Discusses Deleted Captain America Cameo

‘Incredible Hulk’ Director Discusses Deleted Captain America Cameo

Many rumors have been spreading since the release of the latest Incredible Hulk television spot, in which the Robert Downey Jr. (as Iron Man‘s Tony Stark) cameo is revealed. But was this the big cameo we were all waiting for?

One of the big rumors was that a Captain America scene was more than definite after an interview with Incredible Hulk director Louis Letierrer on G4’s Attack of the Show, where Leterrier stated, “You will see Captain America in this movie."

Later at a press event, Leterrier was questioned by Collider.com about the quote and said, "That’s crazy.  Did I say that?"

"I threw [an Easter Egg into the movie] like this [and] I was like, ‘Let’s see how many pick it up,’" he added, confirming that any Captain America appearance in the movie is more an Easter Egg than a true cameo.

Collider then asked the director to get more specific, to which Leterrier replied, "No, I can’t.  Otherwise it’s not fun. Are you crazy?  It’s an Easter Egg."

He eventually offered, "It’s not like ‘Oh, it’s Captain America and it changes everything.’ It’s still a Hulk movie, but it’s really Captain America and it’s there, you’ll see. It’s the real deal. You have to look for it."

Finally, at the same press event, Brazilian news website SOS Hollywood asked Leterrier the same question, and got a very different response:

There’s a point when Bruce Banner gives up on his quest for the cure and decides to kill himself. So he travels far North and reaches the Arctic Circle. You might have seen bits of it in some of the promos. The result was a very dark and strong scene, which Marvel, me and everyone else’s considered to be too hard [for] young audiences to take, so we’ve cut it. Having that said, when Bruce arrives at his destination he meets up with Captain America! At some point this week, we will make it available on the Internet – but I cannot tell you where or when – and the material will definitely be on the DVD.

Other sources state that the DVD is now slated to have an extra 70 minutes of deleted footage (which will no doubt be where we can find the missing Doc Sampson footage as well). So will we have to wait for the DVD to get a glimpse at Marvel’s American Eagle? Or is this all part of a bad viral marketing plan to get more DVD or ticket sales?

You can also read a bit more about the alleged Captain America cameo at Cinematical.

Review: ‘Popeye’ on DVD

Next January, E.C. Segar’s cartoon creation Popeye turns 80. That’s a good run, especially for a character who still wasn’t showing many signs of his age in the 2004 TV special Popeye’s Voyage: The Quest for Pappy.

While Popeye might not have aged over the years, he certainly has changed, which is clearly evident in the contrast between two new DVD collections of [[[Popeye]]] cartoons recently released from Warner Bros. Video.

The first, as mentioned in Michael H. Price’s latest column here at ComicMix is Popeye the Sailor 1938-1940 Vol. 2 ($34.98), which contains 31 remastered theater shorts. Created by the Fleischer family’s studio, these are some of the earliest animated Popeye adventures.

One can quickly see why the shorts became a phenomenon, as big or bigger than Disney’s toons (pointed out in an excellent documentary on the Fleischers that’s included). Popeye and the gang are essentially Vaudevillians, pinwheeling through one pratfall after another.

While that means there’s not much narrative richness and little language-based humor (most the characters are unintelligible), the Fleischers were masters of the gags, setting them up as curvaceous rows of dominoes, one slapping down another in orchestrated patterns.


‘Tales of the Black Freighter’ Sails onto DVD

One of the big looming questions with the Zack Snyder adaptation of Alan Moore and Dave Gibbon’s Watchmen was how they would handle the Black Freighter side story.

Now we have an answer: It’s going straight to DVD, says The New York Times (via Cinematical). For those unfamiliar, the story of the Black Freighter is contained within a comic book that’s being read by a character in Watchmen. It features a man who had been captured by undead pirates and escapes, only to meet an even worse fate.

Instead of filming the Black Freighter story and splicing it into the Watchmen film (as Moore does in the graphic novel), Snyder decided to break it out into a separate film. The Times, which doesn’t usually cover such Hollywood business, uses the news as an example of efforts to drive up DVD sales, which have been stagnant:

The second film, tentatively called “Tales of the Black Freighter,” follows a side “Watchmen” storyline about a shipwreck and will arrive in stores five days after the main movie rolls out in theaters. The DVD will also include a documentary-style film called “Under the Hood” that will delve into the characters’ backstories.

Warner, the No. 1 distributor of DVDs, bills the effort as a way to renew retail excitement for little silver discs now that the once-booming market has matured.

After years of blistering growth, domestic DVD sales fell 3.2 percent last year to $15.9 billion, according to Adams Media Research, the first annual drop in the medium’s history. While it is still a blockbuster business, any decline is cause for concern because DVD sales can account for as much as 70 percent of revenue for a new film. Results for the first quarter this year were mixed, with overall sales flat but notable softness for some new releases like Warner’s box office hit “I Am Legend.”

‘Batman: Gotham Knight’ Trailer Posted

‘Batman: Gotham Knight’ Trailer Posted

A trailer just came online for this summer’s Batman: Gotham Knight, the animated DVD accompanying the Dark Knight release. It’ll be released on July 8.

In short, it looks amazing, with some intense action and very slick animation. But don’t take my word for it, watch for yourself.

(via Blog@)