BIZZ BUZZ 02-05-13
STORIES FROM BEHIND THE SILVER SCREEN
Michelle Yeoh is scheduled to receive the Excellence in Asian Cinema Award. The award will be presented at this year’s Asian Film Festival. I despise awards of this nature. Recognize Michelle for her talents. She has produced a fine body of work; I would expect nothing less from one of Jackie Chan’s top students. To give her an award with the Asian stipulation demeans her talents; as if saying she didn’t deserve it without the Asian designation. Give her an award for Excellence in Cinema. Period.
My fellow critics were amused when I selected “The Raid: Redemption” as both one of the year’s best action films and one of the best foreign films. So I will throw their smirks back in their faces by asking: what do we have in production, “Amour 2”, “Rust and Bone 2”, “A Royal Affair 2”? No, but we do have “The Raid 2: Berandal” currently shooting in Jakarta, though. I hate to be smug, but, I told you so.
The sequel to one of 2012’s better films is scheduled for 100 days of shooting. The movie picks up right were the original ended. Rama, again played by Iko Uwais, will go undercover and join the Jakarta crime syndicate in order to keep his family safe. Gareth Huw Evans will once again write and direct. Now this one should be worth waiting for, wouldn’t you say, comrades.
There is, for some inexplicable reason, a Hollywood fascination with all things Russian. They are appearing as protagonists, antagonists and all parts in between in myriad movies and television shows. It’s almost as if producers are trying to divert our attention from Muslims. Now, Ridley Scott is getting into the act. He’ll be behind “Child 44”, a thriller starring Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace. It centers on a Soviet agent investigating a serial child killer who discovers the Soviet government has him under the microscope.
Well, I’m sure I’ll anger a horde by saying I’ve never really been a fan of “Doctor Who”, which in my day was called “Dr. Who and the Daleks”. Nevertheless, the Doctor’s fans are more loyally ravenous than Drs. House, Kildaire and Casey combined.
The goodly Doctor is prepping for his first TV movie, dubbed “An Adventure in Space and Time.” It’s a 90 minute affair, set to coincide with the Doctor’s 50th Anniversary.
David Bradley, who played Argus Filch in the Harry Potter series, has secured a role in the film. He will play William Hartnell, the first actor to play Doctor Who (1963- 66).
Try as they may, female superheroes simply do not capture the imagination, nor box office dollars, of their male counterparts. Supergirl, Cat Woman, Sheena and Wonder Woman have all given it a go, but fallen incredibly short. Still, the CW Network, on the success of its interpretation of The Green Arrow, is determined to present its viewers with “Amazon”, a prequel to the Wonder Woman saga. The Warrior Amazon has been on the CW’s table for a few years. The network was not happy with the original script for the pilot and has ordered a revision. If the new script proves favorable, “Amazon” will launch in the fall of 2013, with “Arrow” as a strong lead-in.
It seems a modified version of the Sinister Six is scheduled for the sequel to “The Amazing Spider-Man”. Paul Giamatti has signed to play The Rhino, Jamie Foxx is playing Electro and Dane De Haan will play Harry Osborne, aka, The Green Goblin. Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone are also reprising their roles. Look for Electro to be some type of sympathetic villain. Foxx’s current contract states he cannot be a “bad guy”.
Vince McMahon, head of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) is having fits. His “Monday Night Raw” began experiencing ratings dips. Frantic, the WWE pulled off two publicity coups: First, they brought back, and gave the Championship Belt to Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, assuring his presence through the Wrestlemania pay-per-view; then they presented the Heavyweight Title to Alberto Del Rio, making a play for the ever growing Latino audience. To complete the promotional hattrick, WWE superstar John Cena won the Royal Rumble, giving him a slot in the main event of Wrestlemania.
Despite the maneuvers, the ratings for “Monday Night Raw” weren’t enough to beat out “Sponge Bob Squarepants”. The retarded looking soggy sponge garnered 50,000 more viewers than “Raw”. If Vince is still losing the ratings to a cartoon, can the return of The Undertaker be far behind?
The Bizz Buzz is a weekly posting of the latest news from behind the Silver Screen, culled from wire services, trade publications and top secret studio informers, all mixed with my keen deductive reasoning and sinister, snarky statements.