Got any tips? Send them here

Get in Touch


Have a question or comment you'd like to send my way?

Send your e-mail here

I'll do my best to read and respond to your e-mails. Sci-Fi Movies: Superman, The Wolverine, Spider-Man, Dredd, Green Lantern, Cowboys & Aliens, Harry Potter 7 + more

Cross-posted at

In this week’s Sci-Fi Movies column we start off with casting news from both the Superman and Spider-man films. Plus the next Wolverine movie has a name.

Summary of Column Contents

  • Superman casting begins; Production set to begin in June
  • Denis Leary cast as George Stone in Spider-Man reboot
  • Darren Aronofsky’s Wolverine sequel will be called “The Wolverine”
  • New Trailers: Green Lantern and Battle: Los Angeles
  • Deathly Hallows: Part 1 breaking franchise records
  • First look at Karl Urban as Judge Dredd
  • First Look at teaser trailer for Cowboys & Aliens – Written by Orci, Kurtzman & Lindelof
  • Howard Shore returning to compose score to The Hobbit
  • Avatar sequel details
  • Robert Zemeckis won’t direct The Wizard of Oz remake
  • The Thing prequel loses release date

And there are lots of new trailers and previews including The Green Lantern, Battle: Los Angeles and more Check it all out below.


Superman casting begins; Production set to begin in June

Warner Brothers, producer Christopher Nolan and director Zack Snyder have officially begun the process of casting for the “Superman” remake. Deadline reports that they have cast a “wide net” for Clark Kent/Superman and the studio is open to someone who isn’t well known. We also know that the age range will be between 28-32. Some rumored names for the Man of Steel include Armie Hammer, Joe Manganiello and Ian Somerhalder:

The Superman search will likely take time to play out, as did the hunt for the new Spider-Man which went to Andrew Garfield. There will be inevitable buzz on actors like Armie Hammer, the strapping 6’5″ actor who played Cameron. And Tyler Winklevoss in The Social Network and who was eyed by the studio to play Batman in a Justice League movie that Mad Max helmer George Miller was poised to direct until the film got scrapped. But Hammer is only 24. The studio could go the TV route with True Blood’s Joe Manganiello, who claimed during a recent movie junket that he’s being considered and is certainly a strapping 34-year old. Or an actor like Ian Somerhalder of The Vampire Diaries, who is turning 32 and listed at 5’9+”.

Production is expected to begin next June and the film will be released in 2012.

Denis Leary cast as George Stone in Spider-Man reboot

Denis Leary is in negotiations to play George Stacy, the father of Emma Stone’s Gwen Stacy in Marc Webb’s 3D “Spider-Man” reboot. In the comics, Stacy is a police captain who comes in frequent contact with Spider-Man. Here’s an excerpt from the Wiki entry on the character:

He is Gwen Stacy’s father and he strongly approves of his daughter’s relationship with Peter Parker (Spider-Man). He is also a strong supporter of Spider-Man, often defending him when others accuse him.

During a fight between Spider-Man and Doctor Octopus, he is crushed by falling debris while saving a child, in the classic The Amazing Spider-Man (vol. 1) #90 (Nov. 1970). As he dies, he reveals to Peter that he had known his identity for some time (something Peter had suspected anyway), and asks Peter to take care of Gwen.

It’s unknown whether Webb and writer James Vanderbilt will remain faithful to the comics depicition of the character.

Darren Aronofsky’s Wolverine sequel will be called “The Wolverine”

Darren Aronofsky has revealed that the follow-up to 2009’s “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” will be called “The Wolverine”. Aronofsky also told HitFix that the film will be a “one-off”, with the site noting that the director “emphasized that the film isn’t a sequel in any conventional sense.” In other news, cinematographer Matthew Libatique has confirmed that he’ll be re-uniting with Aronofksy for “The Wolverine”.

New Trailers: Green Lantern and Battle: Los Angeles

It was a big week for trailer reveals. First up, we have the debut of the previously teased teaser trailer for Martin Campbell’s “Green Lantern”. The film stars Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan, Blake Lively as Carol Feris, Peter Sarsgaard as Hector Hammond and Mark Strong as Sinestro.

Green Lantern [via Trailer Addict]

In a universe as vast as it is mysterious, a small but powerful force has existed for centuries. Protectors of peace and justice, they are called the Green Lantern Corps. A brotherhood of warriors sworn to keep intergalactic order, each Green Lantern wears a ring that grants him superpowers. But when a new enemy called Parallax threatens to destroy the balance of power in the Universe, their fate and the fate of Earth lie in the hands of their newest recruit, the first human ever selected: Hal Jordan.

Next up is the teaser trailer for Jonathan Liebesman’s “Battle: Los Angeles”. The film stars Aaron Eckhart, Michell Rodriguez and Bridget Moynahan.

Battle: Los Angeles [via Trailer Addict–watch the international teaser trailer here]

For years, there have been documented cases of UFO sightings around the world – Buenos Aires, Seoul, France, Germany, China. But in 2011, what were once just sightings will become a terrifying reality when Earth is attacked by unknown forces. As people everywhere watch the world’s great cities fall, Los Angeles becomes the last stand for mankind in a battle no one expected. It’s up to a Marine staff sergeant (Aaron Eckhart) and his new platoon to draw a line in the sand as they take on an enemy unlike any they’ve ever encountered before.

Battle: Los Angeles is scheduled to hit theaters on March 11, 2011. “Green Lantern” hits theaters in 3D on June 17, 2011.

Promotional artwork/posters for “Green Lantern” [IGN, (2)]

Deathly Hallows: Part 1 breaking franchise records

“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1”, the first half of the final part of the “Harry Potter” saga, opened nationwide this week and took in $24M in estimated box office from a record 3,700 theaters in the U.S. and Canada in midnight-Thursday screenings. That’s a new high for the franchise — topping the $22.2M for HP6. And on Friday night the film brought in another $61M, another franchise high and the fifth highest single-day of all time.  According to early numbers, the film looks headed for an opening weekend of $140M.

Previously on First look at Karl Urban as Judge Dredd

Karl Urban, Star Trek’s new Dr. McCoy, is currently shooting “Dredd”, where he plays the title character in the “Judge Dredd” comic adaptation. Today the first image of Karl as Dredd has emerged, click to enlarge:

“Dredd” is expected to release in 3D in 2012. Click here to read the rest of the story

Previously on First Look at teaser trailer for Cowboys & Aliens – Written by Orci, Kurtzman & Lindelof

Another trailer release was for the sci-fi western “Cowboys & Aliens”. Before Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, and Damon Lindelof started working on the script for the Star Trek sequel, the movie that was taking up much of their time for the last year was “Cowboys & Aliens”. Watch the teaser trailer and a few more images below.

Here’s the film’s synopsis (click here to read the rest of the story which includes more images, a look at the teaser poster and more):

Blockbuster filmmaker Jon Favreau directs Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford in an event film for summer 2011 that crosses the classic Western with the alien-invasion movie in a blazingly original way: Cowboys & Aliens. Joined by an arsenal of top moviemakers—Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci—he brings an all-new action thriller that will take audiences into the Old West, where a lone cowboy leads an uprising against a terror from beyond our world.

1873. Arizona Territory. A stranger (Craig) with no memory of his past stumbles into the hard desert town of Absolution. The only hint to his history is a mysterious shackle that encircles one wrist. What he discovers is that the people of Absolution don’t welcome strangers, and nobody makes a move on its streets unless ordered to do so by the iron-fisted Colonel Dolarhyde (Ford). It’s a town that lives in fear.

But Absolution is about to experience fear it can scarcely comprehend as the desolate city is attacked by marauders from the sky. Screaming down with breathtaking velocity and blinding lights to abduct the helpless one by one, these monsters challenge everything the residents have ever known.

Now, the stranger they rejected is their only hope for salvation. As this gunslinger slowly starts to remember who he is and where he’s been, he realizes he holds a secret that could give the town a fighting chance against the alien force. With the help of the elusive traveler Ella (Olivia Wilde), he pulls together a posse comprised of former opponents—townsfolk, Dolarhyde and his boys, outlaws and Apache warriors—all in danger of annihilation. United against a common enemy, they will prepare for an epic showdown for survival.

“Cowboys & Aliens” is scheduled to hit theaters on July 29, 2011

PREVIEW Videos & Images

Black Swan

Poster [IMP Awards]

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

International trailer [YouTube]

Watch four new clips here

Green Hornet

Trailer [Yahoo! Movies]

Gulliver’s Travels

Promotional stills [more at IGN]

I Am Number Four

Featurette [YouTube]

Mars Needs Moms

Promotional still [AceShowBiz]

Men in Black 3

Set images [more at Daily Mail & Splash News Online]


Poster [Empire]

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

Teaser poster [IMP Awards]

Red Riding Hood

Teaser poster [Trailer Addict]

Teaser trailer [Trailer Addict]

Scream 4

Promotional stills [more at Shock Till You Drop]

Season of the Witch

Trailer [Trailer Addict]

Source Code

Teaser trailer [YouTube]

TRON: Legacy

International trailer [YouTube via Cinema Blend]

Watch another trailer here

Interview with cast and crew [Underwire | Wired]

Wonka: Legacy (Tron/Willa Wonka trailer mash-up) [YouTube via BuzzFeed]


  • Lionsgate has signed Mike White to direct the big screen adaptation of Seth Grahame-Smith’s novel “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies”. David O. Russell was originally attached to direct, but pulled out earlier this month. [Variety]
  • Composer Howard Shore has revealed that he’s returning to score both parts of “The Hobbit”: “I’ll be working on it for the next three years — it’s going to consume a lot of my time and work now.” [The Province via]
  • Director Pierre Morel is eying “EDF” (Earth Defense Force) as one of his next projects. The director has been in talks to direct both “EDF” and “Ouija”, the adaptation of the Hasbro board game, but Universal execs passed on his presentation for “Ouija”. [Heat Vision | THR]
  • Joss Whedon’s “The Avengers” was expected to shoot mainly in Manhattan, but word has it Marvel is moving production to LA to save on cost. [Bleeding Cool]
  • “Avatar” producer Jon Landau reveals that water will play a large part for the sequel, but it won’t be all of the movie, as was previously rumored: “There’s been a lot of rumours that it’s an underwater movie – it’s not. Just like the Floating Mountains, and the Na’vi’s interaction with the mountains, were a part of Avatar, it’ll be the same type of thing.” [Empire]
  • …Landau also said that “Avatar 2” will pick up where the first left off, but won’t end with a cliffhanger: “…just like Avatar resolved itself and doesn’t feel like a set-up to another movie, you don’t want Avatar 2 to feel like a set up for 3.” [Empire]
  • …After 11 months, “Avatar” has officially exited theaters. The final domestic gross was $760.5M ($10.7M from the re-release). The worldwide figure is $2.8B. [Gitesh Pandya / Box Office Guru | Twitter]
  • “Inception” cinematographer / long-time Christopher Nolan collaborator Wally Pfister says “The Dark Knight Rises” will shoot with IMAX cameras, but they won’t shoot the entire film for IMAX. Pfister cites cost and inability to capture sound as two of the main issues. [The Wrap]
  • Check out a script review for the upcoming Hughes-bros.-directed “Akira” movie over at Screen Rant.
  • Swedish directors Mans Marlind and Bjorn Stein have been hired by Screen Gems and Lakeshore Entertainment to direct “Underworld 4”. Kate Beckinsale is slated to reprise her role as Selene. [Heat Vision | THR]
  • Brett Ratner says they are still in the scripting process on the adaptation of the comic book series “Youngblood”. [Splash Page | MTV]
  • Commercial director Fredrik Bond is attached to direct “Year 12”, a sci-fi action movie that takes place 12 years after aliens have invaded Earth. [Deal Central | The Wrap]
  • Phillip Noyce is in negotiations to direct “Timeless”. The time-travel themed project centers on a “recently wed man [who] loses his wife and discovers after the fact she has left him a fortune. Haunted by an unresolved issue between himself and his wife, the man invests the money to build a time travel device, just to see her one last time.” [Deadline]
  • Alan Ritchson, who plays Aquaman in The CW series “Smallville”, says he has heard rumblings of a big screen adaptation of “Aquaman”: “I think [a movie] is very much a reality. In fact, I think there’s one in the works. Some people in LA are starting to get the ball rolling on that. I don’t know what my involvement would ever be in that…But it’s just so expensive to do. It’s hard to say if it’s really going to happen.” [Comic Book Resources]
  • Robert Zemeckis did take a meeting with Disney to direct a remake of “The Wizard Of Oz” — to be directed by using the original 1939 script — but sources say Zemeckis won’t be directing the project: “The reports that Robert Zemeckis is doing The Wizard of Oz are absolutely false.” [PopWatch | EW & Deadline]
  • Universal Pictures has scrubbed the release of “The Thing”. The prequel was scheduled to hit theaters on April 29, 2011. The project no longer has a release date but it will hit theaters eventually. Producer Marc Abraham says the filmmakers plan to use the extra time to do some re-shoots to enhance existing sequeences and clear up some of the story. [HitFix]


  • Joss Whedon says he envisioned Angelina Jolie as Dianna in now defunt “Wonder Woman” movie. [Inside Movies | EW]
  • George Clooney is reportedly eying the lead role in director Steven Soderbergh’s big screen version of “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.”. [The Playlist]
  • Robert Downey Jr. has officially exited the Alfonso Cuaron-directed space survival thriller “Gravity”. The character, who was only expected to appear in the first act of the movie, will likely be recast. In related news, Sandra Bullock is still in negotiations to star in the project. [Heat Vision | THR]
  • Collin Farrell has been offered the lead role in Sony’s remake of “Total Recall” and is currently in negotiations. Tom Hardy and Michael Fassbender were also considered for the part. Len Wiseman is directing the remake. [Variety]
  • Casting has begun on the big screen adaptation of Seth Grahame-Smith’s novel “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter”. Tom Hardy, one of the rumored names for the lead role, will not, contrary to prior rumors, be cast in the project… [What’s Playing]
  • …There is other news on Hardy, however. There’s a report that Hardy will be playing the villain Hugo Strange in Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight Rises”. [Batman-News] Sci-Fi TV and Movies will be off next week. Have a Happy Thanksgiving holiday!

Follow Russ on his website: Your Entertainment Now and on Twitter: