There wasn't a whole lot of exciting news this week, just a bunch of casting stuff and things I already knew:
Peter Jackson most likely to direct THE HOBBIT -
This is something I already knew. There have been a ton of reports about potential replacements for Guillermo del Toro since he's left the project (ranging from Sam Raimi to Brett Ratner), but nothing stuck. All along, even though he seemed reluctant, I assumed Peter Jackson would opt to step back into the director's chair. I really enjoyed the LOTR films, but I would have liked a fresh take on Middle-Earth in Del Toro, but If I can't have that, I will settle for Jackson, someone who likely won't screw it up.
The SPIDER-MAN reboot gets its Peter Parker -
It's official, Andrew Garfield will play the web-slinging superhero in the reboot of the franchise. This casting process has gone on for a while now, with a new frontrunner appearing every week. I, for one, am glad it's finally over because I guess I don't really care all that much. Garfield appeared in Gilliam's DR. PARNASSUS and will next be featured in Fincher's THE SOCIAL NETWORK. He's a bit older than some of the previous contenders, which should mean that they can't go too young with the Parker character, which is good because then they can't be planning on making the teen drama that some reports have suggested.
X-MEN: FIRST CLASS casting rumors -
Amber Heard (PINEAPPLE EXPRESS, THE INFORMERS) might play a young Mystique. I'm not sure why this character would be necessary, but I guess Magneto is supposed to start building his Brotherhood in this film. I think she'd do a fine job though.
Alice Eve (SHE OUT OF MY LEAGUE) might be up for the role of Emma Frost aka The White Queen. I don't know much about the character except that she has an enormous amount of telepathic energy, is at one time a foe and then later a friend to the X-Men, and also that the character was voted one of the "Hottest Comic Book Characters" by a bunch of nerds.
Andy Serkis will play Caesar the ape in RISE OF THE APES -
I like this. I will continue to trash this movie until I inevitably see it, but each bit of casting news brings a little more light to the project. Serkis is a talented and unique actor who can also do some great CG work (see Gollum). He'll be re-teaming with WETA for this, so I expect his performance will be wonderfully captured.
The cast list for this film now includes: James Franco, John Lithgow, Freida Pinto and maybe Don Cheadle.
Timothy Olyphant might take on the role of Snake Plissken -
The remake of ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK is now a certainty with Breck Eisner at the helm, so people are just going to have to get used to the idea of there being a new Snake Plissken. Timothy Olyphant, who also starred in Eisner's THE CRAZIES seems likely for the job. I like this a lot actually, certainly more than the Gerard Butler rumors from years ago.