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News broke yesterday that Ben Affleck has been chosen to take on the mantle of Batman in Zack Snyder’s sequel to the Man of Steel (the first time the two characters have appeared in a movie together to boot) and today it was revealed that he signed a multi-picture deal. So of course the internet is at war about how much this will/will not suck (with the majority falling into the suck category). I agree that he was not the best choice for Daredevil (it SHOULD have been Matt Damon – SEE ALSO Bourne Identity and Matt Murdock’s appearance in comics).

 

That said, I find myself in the “cautiously optimistic” or “wait and see” camp. Let me explain, Ben Affleck has, I’ll admit, only been good at playing two roles. The first, is “guy form Boston”… this won’t help in a Batman role so let’s skip it. The second is “charming asshole guy in a suit”. This has Bruce Wayne written all over it. With that established, we just need him to be able to pull off Batman; I think he can do Batman action better than Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer OR George Clooney so we SHOULD be good…

 

Agree? Disagree? Let us know in the comments!

Nintendo is developing a new Zelda game for the 3DS. In Japanese, the game is called The Legend of Zelda: Kamigami no Triforce 2. You probably remember the first Kamigami no Triforce game’s English title, A Link to the Past.

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The game will feature a new storyline, new puzzles, and new dungeons. Link will also have the ability to turn into a drawing on the wall to make his way around corners.

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The game will be out this holiday season in the West, and it will be out in early 2014 for Japan.

According to Nintendo’s US branch, it is “set in the world of A Link to the Past.” It currently does not have an English language title.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past was originally released on the SNES in 1991. Many consider it one of the best Zelda games ever made.

 

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Perhaps most interesting – and of keen interest to the fans – was Lucas’ concern about creative control of the storyline for the next trilogy, even after the sale. That’s conveyed in the following excerpt from the piece:

“Lucas had paid close attention to how Disney had handled Pixar, which he still refers to as ‘my company.’ He founded it as the Lucasfilm Computer Division in 1979, and sold it to [Steve] Jobs six years later. He calls Disney’s decision not to meddle with Pixar ‘brilliant.’ If he sold Lucasfilm to Disney, he figured there might still be a way to retain some influence over his fictitious universe. Much would depend on who ran Lucasfilm after he retired.”

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That person, of course, was Kathleen Kennedy, who immediately accepted the offer. Details the story, “‘When Kathy came on, we started talking about starting up the whole franchise again,’ he [Lucas] says. ‘I was pulling away, and I said, “Well, I’ve got to build this company up so it functions without me, and we need to do something to make it attractive.” So I said, “Well, let’s just do these movies.”

“Lucas and Kennedy hired screenwriter Michael Arndt, who won an Oscar for Little Miss Sunshine, to begin work on the script for Episode VII. They enlisted Lawrence Kasdan, who wrote the screenplays for The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, to act as a consultant. Lucas started talking to members of the original Star Wars cast, such as Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford, about appearing in the films. In June 2012, he called Iger. In the five months of negotiations that followed, Lucas argued that the best people to make the next Star Wars trilogy would be his longtime Lucasfilm executives. ‘I had a group of very, very talented people that had worked for the company for many, many years and really knew how to market Star Wars, how to do the licensing and make the movies,’ Lucas explains. ‘I said, “I think it would be wise to keep some of this intact. We need a few people to oversee the property, you know, who are just dedicated to doing that, so we’re sure we get this right.”

“Iger understood Lucas’s concerns. ‘George said to me once that when he dies, it’s going to say “Star Wars creator George Lucas,”‘ he says. Still, Iger wanted to make sure that Lucas, who was used to controlling every aspect of Star Wars, from set design to lunchboxes, understood that Disney, not Lucasfilm, would have final say over any future movies. ‘We needed to have an understanding that if we acquire the company, despite tons of collegial conversations and collaboration, at the end of the day, we have to be the ones who sign off on whatever the plans are,’ says Alan Horn, chairman of Walt Disney Studios.

“…At first Lucas wouldn’t even turn over his rough sketches of the next three Star Wars films. When Disney executives asked to see them, he assured them they would be great and said they should just trust him. ‘Ultimately you have to say, “Look, I know what I’m doing. Buying my stories is part of what the deal is.” I’ve worked at this for 40 years, and I’ve been pretty successful,’ Lucas says. ‘I mean, I could have said, “Fine, well, I’ll just sell the company to somebody else.”‘

“Once Lucas got assurances from Disney in writing about the broad outlines of the deal, he agreed to turn over the treatments—but insisted they could only be read by Iger, Horn, and Kevin Mayer, Disney’s executive vice president for corporate strategy. ‘We promised,’ says Iger. ‘We had to sign an agreement.’

“When Iger finally got a look at the treatments, he was elated. ‘We thought from a storytelling perspective they had a lot of potential,’ he says.”

From previous interviews, we knew Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg) would be the lead of ABC’s S.H.I.E.L.D. show but we didn’t know how showrunners Maurissa Tancharoen, Joss,Jed, Jeffrey Bell and Jeph Loeb would accomplish this seeing as how Coulson died at the hands of Loki (Tom Hiddleston) in The Avengers. With the show taking place after the climatic battle with the Chituari in NYC many theorized that Coulson would be seen in flashback, that he was really a robot, a Skrull shape-shifter or something else equally outlandish. Well S.H.I.E.L.D. executive producer Joss Whedon told the crowd at SXSW that Coulson is in fact returning from the dead.

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“I’ll tell you guys this, Heimlich,” Whedon joked, before effectively clamming up about the show. “I can’t talk about it,” he admitted, but said that he did bring Coulson back from the dead for the ABC drama. “Yes. For realsies.”

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Now that it’s established that Coulson really did die in The Avengers and that Fury didn’t lie to the other Avengers, the question now is HOW does Coulson come back from the dead? There are a number of items and methods that this could be used to accomplish this in the pages of Marvel Comics but the vast majority of such devices have yet to be presented in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

No matter how they do it, it’s safe to say Agent Coulson is a badass at this point.

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Marvel’s “Phase Two” set of films will officially begin this year with Iron Man 3 on May 3 and it only gets bigger from there. Marvel Studios President of Production Kevin Feige is the man behind it all and he knows all the little secrets for the upcoming films. In an interview with SFX Magazine, he spoke about the scale and genres of all their upcoming films and says that the word “Cosmic” isn’t exactly how he’d describe the phase as a whole.

“The Thor film and the Guardians of the Galaxy film certainly are cosmic. Guardians and Thor will take the brunt of the cosmic side of the universe, particularly Guardians, which is 95% in space. I think Iron Man 3 shows the other side of Phase 2, which is delving deeper into the characters. Throwing them on a much more personal journey. And Captain America will showcase… What’s exciting to me about Cap – sort of about Iron Man 3 too if you look at it – is it’s tonally almost like a different genre. Shane Black’s described Iron Man 3 as a Tom Clancy sort of political thriller, which I like a lot. We hired our directors on Cap because they loved our explanation that we really want to make a ’70s political thriller masquerading as a big superhero movie. Just like with the first film – we got Joe Johnston because we said, ‘We want to do a ’40s World War Two movie masquerading as a big superhero movie.’ I love that we’re doing a sequel to a film that’s a completely different genre than the first film. I think that’s fun. And the comics do it all the time.”

Of all the films that Marvel will be making over the next few years, the one we probably know the least about is Guardians of the Galaxy which Feige says will be a standalone film to a degree and isn’t completely integral to The Avengers sequel as the other solo films are.

“It’s much more of a standalone film. It takes place in the same universe. And when we’ve been on the other side of that universe in other movies, you might see those characteristics in Guardians, but the Avengers are not involved with what’s happening out there at this time.”

Phase Two kicks off this year with Iron Man 3 on May 3,  Thor: The Dark World on November 8, 2013, Captain America: The Winter Soldier on April 4, 2014, Guardians of the Galaxy on August 1, 2014, and The Avengers 2 on May 1, 2015.

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Currently in the “pure speculation and rumor” category, Latino Review is reporting that Warner Bros. has approached Christopher Nolan to take over everything related to their DC Comics properties. They allege that Nolan will be involved in the development and will produce all of the DC superheroes. They also say they are working toward having Christian Bale reprise his role as Bruce Wayne from The Dark Knight series to join up with Henry Cavill in the Justice League film and that Man of Steel director Zack Snyder will also produce and may direct the project.


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This would certainly make sense as an approach after seeing the huge success with the Avengers movie. The real question is, is a dark and gritty JLA movie set in a more realistic universe what fans will want to see? Warner Brothers seems to be banking on a yes based on the numbers put up by the Dark Knight series as well as Arrow on the CW network.

 

-Chris Zaragoza