1. It’s that time of year, folks…
Welcome to another edition of Gambit-chat. The all-too-regular column where we recap all the latest news about Gambit, a film that is definitely happening and definitely doesn’t star Colin Firth. This week, Variety reports that Lizzy Caplan is the latest actor to join the project. It’s not known who the Now You See Me 2 and The Night Before actor will play but it certainly isn’t Gambit, himself. Channing Tatum remains attached in the lead role somehow. Plus Gore Verbinski is all set to direct from a script by RoboCop and Patriots Day writer Josh Zetumer ahead of a February 14, 2019 release.
2. Full steam ahead for Murder On The Orient Express sequel
While Murder On The Orient Express hasn’t exactly set the world on fire – it’s currently sitting pretty at $156million from a $55million budget – it seems it’s done enough for Fox to greenlight a sequel. Screenwriter Michael Green will return for Death On The Nile and Kenneth Branagh (plus moustache) is expected to follow. A DOTN film was, of course, hinted at at the close of Orient Express and the speed of it being greenlit suggests Fox is eager to get into the Poirot business. Who knows what stories they’ll adapt between now and the time the series becomes unprofitable? At least, having done the whole train thing, Fox are ready to change things up. Death On The Nile sees some hot riverboat-based action and, if the Orient Express was anything to go by, another relatively wasted cast. [via Variety]
3. The Incredibles 2 trailer is all good
It’s a bit of a mixed bag for Pixar at the moment. On the one hand Coco, their latest release – due in UK cinemas January 19 – is hoovering up acclaim. Phrases like “return to form” are being plastered everywhere as if it has been longer than two years since Inside Out. On the other hand John Lasseter, Pixar’s chief creative officer, has taken a leave of absence over sexual assault. What he’s deemed “unwanted hugs” others, speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, have termed “grabbing, kissing, [and] making comments about physical attributes.”
Still, there’s nothing like a teaser trailer to get our minds off things! And here it is – the long-awaited return of The Incredibles. Director Brad Bird revealed earlier this year that the whole family would be returning, as well as Samuel L. Jackson’s Frozone and Bird’s Edna Mode, but this glimpse just whets our appetite ahead of its release on June 15, 2018. Surely nothing bad will happen between now and then.
4. Paddington team continue their raid on childhood
Not content with perfectly adapting one classic British children’s tale, the team behind Paddington and Paddington 2 are ready to take on Enid Blyton. Variety reports that Paddington writer Simon Farnaby is attached to adapt Blyton’s Magic Faraway Tree while Neal Street Productions and StudioCanal are ready to finance and produce. This would mark the first time that Blyton’s novel has been adapted for film, despite the prolific author’s significant caché. It’s possible that, buried amongst all the Famous Five, Secret Seven and Noddy adaptations, no one noticed there was other stuff.
Magic Faraway Tree is the second of four Faraway Tree books and sees the titular tree providing all manner of adventures for the child heroes that discover it. “Enid Blyton’s work is timeless” said Hilary Murray Hill of rights holders Hachette Children’s Group – cheerfully ignoring her book The Three Golliwogs – “we can’t wait to see it realised on the big screen.” After Paddington, we’re of the same mind.
5. Star Wars: The Last Jedi will probably make a lot of money
It may come as no surprise but Rian Johnson’s upcoming Star Wars picture is eagerly awaited. According to tracking services, as reported in Deadline, the picture is on course to score a US launch of around $200 million. That’s a lot. For context, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story scored $155.1 million, while The Force Awakens nabbed $248 million. Only three other films have debuted with a bigger-than-$200-million release: Jurassic World, The Avengers, and the aforementioned Force Awakens. Esteemed company. Esteemed, rich, company.
6. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom rises
— Colin Trevorrow (@colintrevorrow) November 22, 2017
Colin Trevorrow, he of The Book Of Henry and Jurassic World, has teased us with the first footage from Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. The six second clip shows Chris Pratt being charmingly disarming as he pets a cuddly raptor. Sure, it’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye. The sequel to the 2015 megahit stars Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard and fresh, young blood like James Cromwell, Toby Jones and Jeff Goldblum. Goldblum, of course, will be reinhabiting the role of Ian Malcolm, the esteemed mathematician from Jurassic Park and The Lost World. A Monster Calls director J.A. Bayona wears the puffy directing pants for this one, while Trevorrow, alongside Derek Connolly, wrote the script. It’s set for a US release of June 22, 2018.
7. Captain Marvel says “Hey Jude”
Marvel at Marvel’s upcoming Captain Marvel and its possible Mar-Vell! Yes, that sentence does somehow make sense. According to Variety, Jude Law is in advanced negotiations to play the male lead, Doctor Walter Lawson, in the the Brie-Larson superhero flick, Captain Marvel. According our extensive research, Lawson has his identity assumed by Captain Mar-Vell at some point, but is usually a run-of-the-mill “genius, expert in missiles, robotics and explosives.” He’s also “considered secluded and eccentric” so it’ll be fun to see Law do his thing. We’ll see Larson, Lawson, and that villainous Ben Mendelsohn – who’s also on board as the chief antagonist – do all their things when Captain Marvel is expected to release in March, 2019.