Archive for April, 2018
TidBits: Anime-style Star Wars series; YouTube’s Origin sets familiar cast; Tremors dead; Clarkson likely first in Star Trek director’s chair; Sackhoff returns to space in Another Life
I’m still getting caught up after some personal travel and a variety of various things related to the end of the school year, musicals, plays, etc. – so, so busy! So here is a quick recap of notables this past week!
Star Wars will get animated again, but this time it will have an anime-inspired style. Disney has ordered up and production started on Star Wars Resistance, which is set in the period preceding Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The show will follow young Kazuda Xiono, a pilot recruited to spy on the growing First Order. Familiar and new characters will be featured, including BB-8, Poe Dameron (voiced by Oscar Isaac) and Captain Phasma (voiced by Gwendoline Christie). It will premiere this Fall on the Disney Channel in the U.S., followed by regular airings on Disney XD worldwide.
YouTube has cast two familiar Harry Potter alums in its upcoming SF thriller series Origin. Tom Felton and Natalia Tena will join newcomer Sen Mitsuji to star in the series which follows a group of strangers who are stranded on a spacecraft bound for a distant planet and must work together to survive.
SYFY has elected not to pick up the Tremors series, which would have brought back Kevin Bacon. Bacon posted on Instagram, “#Tremors Sad to report that my dream of revisiting the world of Perfection will not become a reality. Although we made a fantastic pilot (IMHO) the network has decided not to move forward. Thanks to our killer cast and everyone behind the scenes who worked so hard. And always keep one eye out for GRABOIDS!”
Paramount apparently plans to move forward with two separate Star Trek films simultaneously. We already knew about the Tarantino-helmed R-rated production, but now it appears that Tarantino’s project is in some way independent of the current Kelvin-timeline movies, but it is very hazy what that means yet. It could be a different ship and crew, or it could be yet another timeline. Instead, a new Kelvin-timeline movie to follow up Star Trek Beyond is now getting started, with female British director S.J. Clarkson in negotiations to take point – which would make her the first female to head a film in the frachise’s history. This film would also bring back Chris Hemsworth as George Kirk, James Kirk’s father, who appeared in a cameo in 2009’s Star Trek.
Last but not least, Battlestar Galactica and Longmire star Katee Sackhoff will launch back into space aboard the Netflix series Another Life, about astronaut Niko Breckinridge (Sackhoff) on a mission to search for extraterrestrial intelligence and explore an alien artifact.
Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War is likely the biggest movie ever in a number of ways – including breaking opening weekend records. It is expected to gross $248-250 million domestically in its opening weekend, beating Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which opened just short of $248 million, keeping Disney atop the studio mountain with its two acquired mega-franchises.
Avengers: Infinity War is the culmination of over a decade’s work shepherding a story that started with 2008’s Iron Man, ushering in a new era of successful superhero films and the start of an interrelated universe of films building a story character by character. 2011’s Thor brought us the first of what we would learn to be Infinity Stones, a set of six unique gems of incredible power created at the birth of the universe. Each represented a unique aspect of the universe – Space, Reality, Power, Mind, Time, and Soul – and give the holder special powers. Possessing more than one makes the wielder incredibly powerful. Possessing all six – well, that’s what Thanos wants.
There is very little I can say about the movie that isn’t a spoiler, so I’ll limit myself to what little there is that isn’t. This movie is practically non-stop, with powerful action sequences and emotional points throughout. There are so many characters we know I’m amazed they were given the amount of time that they could! The visuals were superb – except there was one that just looked horribly fake. If you’ve seen it, you might know which one.
As for the ending (no spoilers) and the still unknown-titled Avengers 4 (the title itself would constitute a major spoiler for Infinity War, and will be released after sufficient time has passed, likely after the home release), I know what has to happen it I’m both happy and angry that it needs to happen…perhaps we should set up a special corner of the internet where those of us who have seen the movie can hang out and communicate, just so we can vent?
For the first time Nielsen is releasing viewer data on a streaming program – and for it they’ve chosen Netflix’s Lost In Space, released April 13th.
An estimated 6.3 million viewers watched the premiere within the first three days of release. In addition, since Netflix releases all episodes simultaneously, they reported that 1.2 million viewers watched the tenth and final episode in those same three days, showing the level of binge-watching. I’m sure that number will grow.
I can’t give a review yet as I was traveling when it was released and I’m only about 2.5 episodes in…but it is intriguing so far.
Hmm…a quite scary anti-hero…might not be for the younger kids…
Opens October 5th, 2018
SYFY has picked up graphic novel-based Deadly Class for a series. Number of episodes has not yet been mentioned.
“We’re committed to developing graphic novels for SYFY and have found a rich, compelling, truly unique world in Deadly Class,” said Bill McGoldrick, President, Scripted Content, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. “Our producing partners expertly combined high school angst, 80s nostalgia and comic flair into a beautifully realized, visually arresting pilot that truly brings Rick and Wes’ acclaimed comic series to life.”
Deadly Class follows a disillusioned teen recruited into a storied high school for assassins. Maintaining his moral code while surviving a ruthless curriculum, vicious social cliques, and his own adolescent uncertainties may prove fatal. Set against the backdrop of late 80s counter culture, Deadly Class is a coming of age journey unlike anything you’ve ever seen.
Benedict Wong (Dr. Strange), Benjamin Wadsworth (Teen Wolf), Lana Condor (X-Men: Apocalypse), Maria Gabriela de Faria (Yo Soy Franky), Luke Tennie, Liam James (The Family) and Michel Duval (Ultimo Año) star.
It appears to be the end of the road for Ash Williams after three movies (and a cameo in the 2013 soft remake/continuation, plus a prototype film), comics, video games and now three seasons on TV. Starz has elected not to renew Ash vs. Evil Dead, and as such the third season finale on April 29th will serve as the series finale.
The gory horror-comedy franchise was created by Sam Raimi, with longtime partner Rob Tapert producing. It follows Ash (played like no one else could by Bruce Campbell) as he encounters the Necronomicon Ex-Mortis, a Sumerian book which unleashes the undead upon the inhabitants of a cabin in the woods, and later transports him to middle-ages England to fight the forces of the dead again.
Ash Vs Evil Dead has been the ride of a lifetime. Ash Williams was the role of a lifetime.
I will always be grateful to Starz, Sam Raimi, Rob Tapert and our tireless fans for the opportunity to revisit the franchise that launched our careers. Thank you! 😎 pic.twitter.com/oNmTopS1Ab
— Bruce Campbell (@GroovyBruce) April 20, 2018
Actor Vern Troyer, best known for his portrayal of “Mini Me” in the Austin Powers films, passed away earlier today at the age of 49.
The diminutive actor, who was born with achondroplasia, a genetic disorder that is one of the causes of dwarfism, stood at a mere 2’8″ tall and was one of the smallest in the world. He started his career as a stunt double for Baby Bink in 1994’s Baby’s Day Out, and moved into acting in bit parts until he became Dr Evil’s miniature clone in Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me. He would reprise that role in Austin Powers in Goldmember, and appeared as the goblin Griphook in Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone. He also appeared in a number of reality programs and make frequent appearances at conventions and fan events.
His family released an official statement on his Facebook page:
It is with great sadness and incredibly heavy hearts to write that Verne passed away today.
Verne was an extremely caring individual. He wanted to make everyone smile, be happy, and laugh. Anybody in need, he would help to any extent possible. Verne hoped he made a positive change with the platform he had and worked towards spreading that message everyday.
He inspired people around the world with his drive, determination, and attitude. On film & television sets, commercial shoots, at comic-con’s & personal appearances, to his own YouTube videos, he was there to show everyone what he was capable of doing. Even though his stature was small and his parents often wondered if he’d be able to reach up and open doors on his own in his life, he went on to open more doors for himself and others than anyone could have imagined. He also touched more peoples hearts than he will ever know.
Verne was also a fighter when it came to his own battles. Over the years he’s struggled and won, struggled and won, struggled and fought some more, but unfortunately this time was too much.
During this recent time of adversity he was baptized while surrounded by his family. The family appreciates that they have this time to grieve privately.
Depression and Suicide are very serious issues. You never know what kind of battle someone is going through inside. Be kind to one another. And always know, it’s never too late to reach out to someone for help.
In lieu of flowers, please feel free to make a donation in Verne’s name to either of his two favorite charities; The Starkey Hearing Foundation and Best Buddies.
Actor Tim O’Connor, best known for playing the role of Elliott Carson on the original primetime soap opera Peyton Place, but also around here would be known for his role of Dr. Elias Huer in the first season of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, passed away on April 5th in his sleep at home in Nevada City. He was 90.
The Chicago-born O’Connor’s long career spanned stage and screen. His first on-screen appearance was an uncredited role in 1949’s Master Minds. Over his career he made many guest appearances, including Star Trek: The Next Generation, M*A*S*H, The Streets of San Francisco,Wonder Woman, Dynasty, All in the Family and more.
USA Network’s Colony has added four cast members for the upcoming third season, which starts May 2nd.
Peyton List (Gotham) will play Amy Leonard, a doctor and member of the San Fernando cell, who embarks on a dangerous journey with Eric Broussard (Tory Kittles) to deliver valuable secrets to Resistance fighters combating the Occupation.
A Boston native, List studied at the School of American Ballet in New York City and began her career as a model and actress at the age of eight. Since then, she had various modeling jobs for Dooney & Bourke, as well as Clean & Clear, and belongs to the Eileen Ford modeling agency in New York. At the start of her acting career, List played the role of Lucy Montgomery on As the World Turns and went on to guest star on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Sex and the City and Smallville. List can also be seen in films including The Greatest Game Ever Played and Conjuring Aurora.
Graham McTavish (Preacher) will play Andrew MacGregor, the leader of the most successful Resistance camp in what used to be the western United States. He’s held the camp together through a combination of discipline and charisma but is forced to adjust his plans once Will and Katie Bowman (Josh Holloway and Sarah Wayne Callies) arrive with vital information that could forever change the Resistance’s outlook.
Originally a Scottish television and film actor, McTavish is best known for his roles in Outlander, The Hobbit trilogy for Peter Jackson and Preacher, based on Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s cult comic book series. McTavish has also starred alongside Sylvester Stallone in Rambo and Creed, making him the only actor to perform opposite Rocky and Rambo. Additional credits include Red Dwarf, 24, Rome, The Finest Hour and Colombiana. McTavish has also lent his voice work to games and animated TV, including Uncharted 2, 3 and 4, Call of Duty, Dante’s Inferno, Hulk v Thor, The Avengers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Kung Fu Panda.
Wayne Brady (Sofia The First) will play Everett Kynes, a highly successful tech entrepreneur who has risen in this new world to become the head of the rebuilt Seattle Colony. Kynes’ technology was used – and misused – by the human collaborators before the Arrival, leaving him with a chip on his shoulder… and a unique relationship with the invaders. Kynes is both brilliant and has a messianic belief in his own vision for the future.
Born in Columbus, Georgia, Brady began his career performing in numerous stage productions including A Chorus Line, Fences, A Raisin in the Sun, Jesus Christ Superstar and I’m Not Rappaport. Upon moving to Los Angeles in 1996, he performed at the prestigious Mark Taper Forum in its production of Blade to the Heat and garnered guest starring roles on television series as I’ll Fly Away, The Home Court and In the Heat of the Night. Brady has since lent his voice to multiple TV series including TripTank, Phineas and Ferb and, most recently, Sofia The First. Additional credits include The Loud House, Real Husbands of Hollywood, How I Met Your Mother and American Dad!
Waleed Zuwaiter (Altered Carbon) will play Vincent, a moral man who finds himself caught in an impossible position while working for a powerful Resistance group. He will ultimately have to choose between supporting the Bowmans and holding on to old loyalties.
Currently starring alongside Sarah Jessica Parker in the indie Unfollow The Rules, as well as The Angel, Zuwaiter recently wrapped the indie Saint Judy and Altered Carbon. He will next be seen in William, directed by Tim Disney, and Billionaire Boys Club. Additional credits include 20th Century Woman, The Free World and Prison Break. TV guest star roles include Masters of Sex, The Blacklist, House of Cards, Homeland, Madam Secretary and The Good Wife.
In the wake of a mysterious alien invasion, a family fights to stay together in a new world order. The third season of COLONY begins six months after the Bowmans’ escape from the Los Angeles bloc as Will (Josh Holloway) and Katie (Sarah Wayne Callies) struggle to rebuild their family in the world beyond the walls. When their peaceful existence is shattered, they are sent on an odyssey that will finally reveal the horrifying truth behind Earth’s mysterious occupiers and once again force our heroes to choose sides.
Created by executive producers Carlton Cuse (The Strain, Bates Motel, Lost) and Ryan Condal (Rampage), the critically acclaimed drama is co-produced by Legendary Television and Universal Cable Productions. Colony also stars Holloway, Callies, Tory Kittles, Peter Jacobson and Alex Neustaedter.
Starting to get excited…but am I the only one sensing this could just as easily be a prequel to Guardians of the Galaxy if you just swapped some characters around?
In Theaters May 25th!