Archive for March, 2017
Remember that lawsuit filed almost two years ago which claimed that Marvel Studios ripped off elements from a comic called Radix for their modern take on Iron Man? Well, it hasn’t gone away just yet – it’s just transformed.
Early last year the court in Massachusetts denied the case based on jurisdiction, but the plaintiffs, brothers Ben and Ray Lai, owners of Horizon Comics Productions, refiled on April 4th, 2016 in New York. On Monday, U.s District Court Judge J. Paul Oetken issued a ruling on Marvel’s motion to dismiss the suit, dismissing portions of the complaint but allowing others to proceed.
In the ruling, Judge Oetken notes that several parts of the complaint revolve around elements that Marvel called “unprotectable” under copyright, and the court agreed. A “highly mechanized suit of armor” was one, as it was too vague, as was the “three point landing” pose that was common between a poster for Iron Man 3 and some Radix promotional artwork. The pose, frankly, is so utterly common it’s now a cliché and is even referred to as “scènes à faire” or an obligatory scene in the ruling, and despite the plaintiffs assertions that Iron Man originally wore spandex and minimal armor, he wore power armor well before Radix existed, and even when he first debuted in 1963. As those elements are unprotectable, they cannot be considered as part of the test for “substantial similarity” for the case.
Some elements, however, may be protectable in comparing the images, notably things like hairstyles, style of the suit, the use of blue lights in the suit, etc. and Judge Oetken will allow the complaint to proceed “in part”. However, with what seems to remain in the complaint to press on, it still looks like an uphill battle that got even steeper for the plaintiffs.
ABC has pulled freshman series Time After Time after only five of seven completed episodes aired, after the show pulled dismal ratings, averaging only 2.2 million viewers.
The show was based on the novel by Karl Alexander and the 1979 movie adaptation, and featured Freddie Stroma as H.G. Wells and Josh Bowman as Jack the Ripper, brought to the present day via Wells’ time machine.
The show may have had a hard time finding viewers in a prime time landscape awash with time-bendy shows, but at the same time we didn’t see a lot of heat generating for the show in general. Although as fans of the original movie we had high hopes for the show, but due to a very busy second-half schedule it was being queued up for binge-watching on our TiVo.
There are currently no plans to air the remaining two episodes.
More action, less of the humor of the first trailer…
Opens July 7th, 2017
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is the visually spectacular new adventure film from Luc Besson, the legendary director of The Professional, The Fifth Element and Lucy, based on the ground-breaking comic book series which inspired a generation of artists, writers and filmmakers.
In the 28th century, Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Laureline (Cara Delevingne) are a team of special operatives charged with maintaining order throughout the human territories. Under assignment from the Minister of Defense, the two embark on a mission to the astonishing city of Alpha—an ever-expanding metropolis where species from all over the universe have converged over centuries to share knowledge, intelligence and cultures with each other. There is a mystery at the center of Alpha, a dark force which threatens the peaceful existence of the City of a Thousand Planets, and Valerian and Laureline must race to identify the marauding menace and safeguard not just Alpha, but the future of the universe.
Opens July 21st, 2017
Casting TidBits: Katie Cassidy returns to Arrow; Westworld promotes Herthum to regular; Anna Akana joins Stitchers
Death knows no bounds in the DC Multiverse – Katie Cassidy will once again return to Arrow – and it will be as a series regular again! She will return for the final two episodes of this season as Black Siren – the evil Earth-2 version of her original Black Canary, then will be a regular through Season 6. No word on if or how it will affect her regular status on Legends of Tomorrow.
Louis Herthum, who plays Peter Abernathy, father of Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood), will become a series regular on HBO’s Westworld after appearing in six episodes of the show’s debut season.
YouTube and go90 star Anna Akana (Miss 2059) will join the Stitchers team as a recurring character. Akana will play a medical examiner who hits it off with Camille (Allison Scagliotti). Stitchers Season 3 starts June 5th of Freeform.
Umm…Supes is…missing… 😉
Got some new casting moves announced this week…first, Syfy’s live-action/animated blend Happy!, based on the graphic novel from Grant Morrison and Darick Robertson, will get Saturday Night Live‘s Bobby Moynihan to voice the animated title character.
The show follows Nick Sax (Christopher Meloni, Law & Order: SVU), an intoxicated, corrupt ex-cop turned hit man, who is adrift in a world of casual murder, soulless sex and betrayal. After a hit gone wrong, his inebriated life is forever changed by a tiny, relentlessly positive, imaginary blue winged unicorn named Happy, making for a strange buddy act.
Meanwhile Katie McGrath, currently playing Lena Luthor – the little sister to Lex Luthor – on Supergirl has been upped to a series regular on the show. McGrath previously starred in BBC’s Merlin and has been a recurring character on Frontier for Netflix. She also had a co-starring role in Jurassic World.
It’s been three years since we’ve heard of any movement on an English-language live action Star Blazers movie. Good news is that it’s still with Skydance, and Christopher McQuarrie is still set to direct. However, since McQuarrie has been busy with Mission: Impossible 6, Skydance has hired Zach Dean to write a new draft of the script. Dean wrote 2012’s Deadfall starring Eric Bana and Olivia Wilde, and also has Voyagers (about Carl Sagan and his wife, Anne Druyan) and World War II drama Atlantic Wall in pre-production. Skydance hopes to have it ready for McQuarrie to direct as soon as he’s done with M:I6.
The original late-70s Star Blazers (original Japanese Space Battleship Yamato) follows the crew of the Yamato (redubbed Argo in the English version, after the ship of Greek mythology and similar story), a rebuilt relic equipped for space flight to travel from Earth, slowly dying after an alien bombardment, across the galaxy following a message from a mysterious source promising a cure for the Earth. 2010 saw a live-action Japanese version that was true to the styles of the original.
Syfy today announced that it has renewed critically-acclaimed original series 12 Monkeys for a fourth and final chapter ahead of its Season 3 premiere. The network also announced that the series’ entire 10-episode third season will premiere over three consecutive nights, from Friday, May 19 to Sunday, May 21 from 8-11PM ET/PT. The first four episodes will premiere on Friday, with three episodes airing each night on both Saturday and Sunday.
Produced by Universal Cable Productions in association with Atlas Entertainment, the beloved drama, developed by Terry Matalas and Travis Fickett (Nikita), is based on the 1995 Golden Globe® award-winning film of the same name. Said co-developer, showrunner and executive producer Matalas: “Universal Cable Productions and Syfy have given us the opportunity to tell an ambitious, emotional story with a beginning, middle and an end – if not always in that order. I couldn’t be more grateful for their faith and support. Like our fans who may want to turn their clocks ahead to see what we’ve got in store, I only wish I could turn mine back to relive this incredible experience over again.”
“12 Monkeys has a dedicated and enthusiastic fan-base thanks to the epic storytelling by Terry Matalas, and the stellar cast and crew,” said Jeff Wachtel, President, Chief Content Officer, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. “We are thrilled to be able to offer fans an opportunity to binge the third season as a reward for their lasting support, and we couldn’t be more excited to see where Terry takes us with the final chapter of this fabulous story in the fourth season.”
“With its time-twisting themes and edge-of-your-seat storyline, 12 Monkeys is the perfect show to air this way,” said Chris McCumber, President, Entertainment Networks, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. “It’s grown into a world well beyond the original film, and after seeing the creative strength of Season 3, we couldn’t wait to pick it up for a fourth season.”
Upon its premiere in May, Season 3 will continue the journey of James Cole (Aaron Stanford), a man sent back in time to eradicate the source of a deadly plague, and his partner, brilliant virologist Dr. Cassandra Railly (Amanda Schull). While attempting to untangle an insidious conspiracy that’s been spun throughout centuries, the duo embark on a desperate search across time to find the man responsible for the apocalypse – a time traveler who calls himself the Witness. Killing the Witness will save the world, but the journey will come at tremendous personal stakes for the pair. 12 Monkeys also stars Kirk Acevedo (Ramse), Emily Hampshire (Jennifer Goines), Barbara Sukowa (Katarina Jones) and Todd Stashwick (Deacon).
Joining the cast as recurring guest stars in Season 3 are Hannah Waddingham (Game of Thrones), Faran Tahir (Iron Man) and James Callis (Battlestar Galactica). Emmy® award-winner Christopher Lloyd (Back to the Future) is set to appear in a memorable guest-starring role as a deadly cult leader with sinister motives.
Matalas, who also has an overall deal with UCP, will make his directorial debut with the Season 3 premiere episode. Original film producer Charles Roven (Suicide Squad, The Dark Knight Trilogy) and Richard Suckle (Suicide Squad, American Hustle) of Atlas Entertainment, as well as David Grossman (Desperate Housewives, Buffy the Vampire Slayer), serve as executive producers.
Syfy today announced a Season 3 pickup of The Expanse, the drama series called the “best sci-fi show on TV” by io9 and recognized for “transforming TV” by Wired. The 13-episode third season will premiere on Syfy in 2018. From Alcon Television Group, The Expanse is currently airing new Season 2 episodes every Wednesday at 10/9c on Syfy.
“The Expanse is a gorgeous, thrilling, emotional series that has quite simply raised the bar for science fiction on television,” said Chris McCumber, President, Entertainment Networks for NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. “We, along with the fans, are looking forward to continuing the journey with our partners at Alcon Television Group and the series’ brilliant cast and crew.”
The Expanse unfolds across a colonized galaxy 200 years in the future, when two strangers become unwittingly swept up in a vast conspiracy. Based on the New York Times bestselling book series collectively known as “The Expanse,” written by Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck (under the pen name James S. A. Corey), The Expanse stars Steven Strait, Shohreh Aghdashloo, Dominique Tipper, Cas Anvar, Wes Chatham and Frankie Adams.
Academy Award®-nominated screenwriting duo Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby (Children of Men, Iron Man) serve as executive producers and showrunners, alongside Naren Shankar (CSI, Farscape).
The Expanse is financed and produced by Alcon Television Group (ATG), a division of Alcon Entertainment.