Stan Lee will executive produce a television adaptation of Hero for Showtime according to Variety. The novel was written by Perry Moore and was released in 2007, telling the story of an “up-and-coming super-hero who struggles to hide his secret identities.”
Moore is writing the script for the hour long series and will also serve as an executive producer along with Hunter Hill.
Hero joins a growing list of pilots announced by the premium cable network, including yesterday’sCamelot.
Lee last worked in television, producing and hosting two seasons of Who Wants to Be a Superhero? for the Sci Fi Channel.
When last we left Tintin, he and Snowy were facing an uncertain future as the famed directors Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson wanted to turn his graphic novel adventures into at least two live-action films. The forces of corporate evil, though, saw to it that DreamWorks and Paramount Pictures were split asunder, leaving financing for the films up in the air.
Sony, like a white knight, has ridden to the rescue. According to the scribes at Variety, Sony Pictures Entertainment and Paramount Pictures are now discussing terms to allow them to co-finance the digital 3-D films together.
The hero, created by Belgian artist Georges Remi (a.k.a. Herge), had first thought that Universal Studios, new home to DreamWorks would partner up to ensure audiences around the world got to thrill to his exploits. Instead, Universal balked so Paramount told Spielberg and Jackson they would front the full $135 million budget in exchange for better profit-sharing terms. Now it was the directors’ turn to balk forcing Paramount to seek assistance.
The Sony-Paramount deal would be the first film only and would grant Sony international distribution rights while Paramount would retain North American rights in addition to distribution deals in selected English-speaking countries.
While the cash has begun tof low once more, there remains concern over production commencing, as planned, in the fall. Thomas Sangster, the human selected to portray the teen hero, left the project. Spielberg remains optimistic they will recast, shoot and still make their 2010 release date. Jackson would then direct a second film.
Although DreamWorks is now no longer a participant, the principal players remain somewhat enmeshed in their lives. Jackson has delivered The Lovely Bones to DreamWorks which Paramount will release in 2009.
I know way too much about comics. Far more than is healthy. But there are, understandably, a few characters here and there that I either know very little about, either because I never really came across them or I did but found them terribly uninteresting and so dismissed them, soon forgetting what I had learned.
[[[Captain Action]]] happens to be such a character. I remembered he first appeared in the 1960s, wore a costume that resembled a futuristic police officer’s with a chest symbol that reminded me to recycle, and was based on an action figure. And that was it. I remembered nothing else. So when I was asked to review the first issue of the new Captain Action series, on sale today, I thought “Perfect. I can truly look at this as a first-time fan and objectively judge if this would be interesting to someone who has no previous knowledge of the character.”
I read it and found it to be a strange mix of too much information at once and not enough.
We begin with a [[[Superman]]]-like character called Savior. His narration explains who he is and reveals that he secretly blew up a place called A.C.T.I.O.N. Directorate. On page two, we find out that half of what we just read is a lie. This is not Savior, but a person disguised as Savior. This is our hero, Captain Action, who crashes into a statue of his father and proceeds to unleash a massive information dump on the readers in a very awkward monologue.
Apparently, there was once a hero called Captain Action (the original guy from the 1960s). The shape-shifter we’ve just met is his son, the new Captain Action, who has the ability to look like other people and copy their abilities, but only for a short time. Exactly how long he can disguise himself and how long afterward he has to wait before he mimics someone again is not made clear.
The new Captain Action wanted nothing to do with the life of a super-hero, despite his powers, but now feels forced to act since his father was killed by a group of super-heroes that an organization called A.C.T.I.O.N. had “created” to defend the Earth. What “created” means is not fully explained. The new Captain Action informs us that these heroes, Savior included, were somehow turned into sleeper agents, thus why they went rogue later. Exactly how they became sleeper agents is not explained, though a group called Red Crawl is blamed. Apparently, Red Crawl was defeated long ago and everyone believed they were dead, except for the original Captain Action. Now they’re back and causing trouble.
So, Woody Harrelson has discovered genre filmmaking. In addition to his super-hero film, Defendor, he is now making Zombieland, described as a horror/comedy by Columbia Pictures.
Actor Jesse Eisenberg (The Squid and the Whale) is said to be negotiating to appear opposite the actor. According toThe Hollywood Reporter,they would play “a mismatched pair of survivors who find friendship and redemption in a world overrun by zombies.”
Eisneberg’s character would be Flagstaff, described as “a terrified shut-in whose cowardice makes him an expert at surviving the zombies but who is forced out of his shell to join the band of survivors.
The movie is scheduled to be directed by Ruben Fleischer (Gumball 3000: Six Days in May) from a script by the Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick (The Joe Schmo Show)
Harrelson will first appear in Defendor, where he will be a normal guy who thinks he’s a super-hero complete with secret identity. Kat Dennings (Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist) just joined the cast last week, playing a street kid Harrelson’s Arthur befriends. Sandra Oh (Grey’s Anatomy) plays Arthur’s psychiatrist. The movie is written and helmed by Peter Stebbings (Across the River to Motor City) in his directorial debut.
Steve Canyon is a classic comic strip hero, created by Milton Caniff. Since his debut in 1947, the hero was a mainstay until Caniff’s death and the strip’s cancellation in 1988. Interestingly, there was little merchandising done with the character through the years with the notable exception of being part of the personas to be played by Captain Action in the 1960s and the short-lived NBC live action television series from 1958.
Being the series;’ 50th anniversary, the Caniff Estate has authorized a complete restoration and collection of the 34-episode series on DVD. The estate even established a blog to keep fans updated on progress.
According to TV Shows on DVD, work is nearing completion and the prototype package art was recently released. Plans now call for the series to be released in three volumes with the first due out on November 18 (same day as the 75th anniversary DVD collection of The Lone Ranger). Sales are limited to the website at present with no other retailers involved to date.
Volume one will contain the first 12 episodes starring Dean Fredericks as the Air Force plot and adventurer for $24.95. The second and third volumes will each follow some 60-to 90 days later and the blog says the episodes are being collected in their proper order for the very first time. The final volume will include as an extra the original unaired pilot plus a custom slipcase to hold all three sets.
The Superest by Matthew Sutter and Kevin Cornell will move from web to print in an illustrated book to be published by Kensington. The strip is described as a world of “colorful super-heroes, where each hero’s dominant (often quirky and humorous) power serves to supplant his nemesis, although the same power acts as his Achilles heel when battling the successive super-hero.” No publication has been announced.
Director Kevin Smith told Sci Fi Wire that he wants to cast Seth Rogen in an original superhero movie.
"First, I’m going to do a 180 turn and do a horror movie called Red State," Smith said while attending the Toronto International Film Festival. His latest film, Zack and Miri Make a Porno, screened their and stars Rogen along with Elizabeth Banks. "It’s going to be a total horror-political-psychological movie without a funny line in it. Then I’m going to do the science fiction super-hero movie. It’s going to be an original super-hero that I’ve created. It’s stewing right now. I want to do it, though, and, God willing, it will star Seth Rogen."
Rogen is also set to cowrite and star in Sony’s The Green Hornet film, coming in summer 2010.
The Wire report also quoted Smith as saying, "I haven’t written a comic book for about three years, but I am going to write a Batman soon." The project, Batman: Cacophony was a surprise announcement during the summer convention season and has already been solicited for release this November. Artwork is said to be from Walt Flanagan with covers from Adam Kubert and Andy Kubert. The story promises the return of Onomatopoeia, his villain from his run on Green Arrow along with Batman rogues Mr. Zsasz and the Joker. One can only hope he’s actually started writing by now.
Martin Luther King was never a prisoner of war like John McCain. Nelson Mandela never flew a combat mission over Viet Nam like John McCain. Gandhi was never a commanding officer like John McCain.
According to right wing rhetoric, none of these people would be able to lead in America for they would be attacked for their lack of experience. What all of these people share with Barack Obama is the ability to inspire other people.
I am not suggesting that Obama is in any way in the league of those above, but there is something to be said for inspiring people.
Some people like the Republicans don’t see that. This from The party of Lincoln, as they like to say. The “party of Lincoln.” Wow, that is saying something. They always bring that up when they want to make a point.
Lincoln was President in 1861. It’s now 2008. That party is over.
How over? Lincoln is known for one thing and one thing only to the masses: he freed the slaves. He gave black people their freedom in this country. Did you see the sea of faces at the Republican convention? There were thousands of people there, and I’m not kidding when I say this: it looked like you could count the black people on two hands. How is it possible that the Republican Party frees black people from bondage and black people stay away from the Republican Party like Stevie Wonder stays away from driving the Indy 500?
I watched the “Country first” video that the RNC produced and showed at the convention. When images of Ronald Regan, Barbara Bush and McCain were on the screen the crowd went wild. When images of Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks were seen… nothing.
Apparently, Japanese audiences are more interested in the works of Hayao Miyazaki than Bob Kane and Bill Finger. The Dark Knight is performing under expectations in Japan with just $8.7 million in box office receipts after three weeks based on figures at Filmjunk.com.
Compare that with the $93.2 million Miyazaki’s Ponyo on the Cliff has earned in just four weeks.
Film critic Chika Minagawa suggests, "The story is very pessimistic. It has a dark and gloomy texture that Japanese movie fans do not find appealing in a ‘comic hero’ film… Japanese movie fans expect such films to be fun and action packed, for the hero to be attractive, for the villain to be loud and outrageous, and for the movie itself to be easy to understand and light."
The Dark Knight will break the $900 million worldwide gross receipts benchmark over the weekend and is likely to break the $500 million domestic mark in September, although possibly fall short of the $550 million Warner Bros. estimated.