The Rock Says He’s Definitely in ‘Shazam,’ But Hasn’t Decided Whether to Be the Good Guy or the Bad Guy

Back in January, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson-Hercules got on Twitter and announced that he was "partnering" up with WB for an upcoming DC Comics superhero flick. And while "partnering up" seemed like a bit of a stretch—in my experience it's the studios, not the actors, who tend to do most of the heavy lifting when it comes to getting movies made—after months of rampant speculation and eager anticipation (okay, I honestly forgot all about it), we know which project Herc will be in. And as you know from reading and clicking on the title of this post, it's Shazam.

Here's the interesting part, though. We still don't know who Johnson is going to play. It could be the titular good guy, Shazam, a.k.a. Captain Marvel (yes, I know that's confusing, which is why Marvel sued DC Comics to make them stop officially calling him that). Or it could be his arch enemy, Black Adam.

Long ago, before Batfleck and the Justice League, when Man of Steel was just a glint in Zack Snyder's eye, Dwayne Johnson was in talks to appear in a Shazam movie. And at that time, it was Black Adam he wanted to play.

Now, word on the street is that Johnson would still prefer the challenge of playing the bad guy. However, with the DC heroes universe in development, playing the good guy in multiple pictures would make him a hell of a lot more money. So it's understandable why the guy would reconsider.

Personally, I'd love to see The Rock play the good guy. But I highly doubt anyone is going to ask me for my opinion.

[via Screen Rant]

Ivan Reitman Elaborates on Why He Won’t Direct ‘Ghostbusters 3′

We learned back in March that the folks trying to make Ghostbusters 3, a film that's been in the works for decades, hope to begin filming in 2015, despite the fact that Harold Ramis (Egon Spangler) has passed away and Bill Murray (Peter Vankman) simply has no interest. We also learned, not coincidentally, that it will basically be a kind of reboot, and that Ivan Reitman, who directed the first two instalments of the franchise, would not be returning for numero tres.

At that time, Reitman said the passing of Ramis was a major factor in his decision. Now, however, in an interview with SuperHeroHype, he's elaborated on his thought process, and it turns out that it's not just because his longtime collaborator is gone.

I suddenly felt that Ghostbusters didn’t necessarily need me as a director, at least I didn’t need to direct Ghostbusters, let me put it that way... I thought it was better for me just to produce it and to make sure we’re going to have the quality and style of what is appropriate for another version of that film. But the franchise could benefit from somebody else’s point of view. I’ve done it twice before and it will be great to get somebody else to lend a hand as well.

Reitman hasn't directed a hit movie in a long time, but he's still a successful producer and a very smart guy. So he understands that the franchise would actually be better off getting a completely fresh start with a more relevant director, just like Star Wars is better off with J.J. Abrams over George Lucas. And the latest directing rumor, in case you were wondering, has him looking at Paul Feig (Bridesmaids).

Stay tuned.

[via Screen Rant]

Piracy Could Take a Big Bite Out of ‘Expendables 3′ Box Office Returns

I wasn't being cute with that headline. There's no pirate movie coming out this weekend, though I certainly wish there were, because I love pirate movies.

No, the piracy I am talking about here is of the video variety, where people download illegal copies of movies off the interwebs.

You probably don't know anything about that, of course, because video piracy is wrong and you're a good person. But not everyone is as nice as you, and over the last few weeks about 2.2 million not-nice people have downloaded a relatively finished copy of The Expendables 3.

Some industry analysts don't think this will be a huge problem for the film, because the same thing happened with X-Men Origins: Wolverine back in 2009, and that ended up being one of the most successful openings of the year.

However, other industry analysts say the advanced leak of the film most certainly could have an affect on its box office take. The thing is getting pretty poor reviews, and people might just decided to download it for free (which, again, would be wrong) rather than pay $20 for a ticket, popcorn, and gallon of cherry Pepsi.

So who is right? I have no idea. But we're about to find out. The Expendables 3, starring Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Harrison Ford, and every action star from the Kelsey Grammer...hits theaters today, August 15, 2014.

Martin Lawrence Says ‘Bad Boys 3′ Is Officially Maybe Happening

With all due respect to the three instalments of the Big Momma franchise, everyone knows that the greatest success Martin Lawrence has enjoyed on the big screen has come alongside Will Smith in the Jerry Bruckheimer-produced, Michael Bay-directed Bad Boys and Bad Boys II. Unfortunately, after the original body cop classic came out back in 1995, Smith turned into a megastar. And as a megastar, it's been very difficult to find time to make more Bad Boys movies, even though everyone supposedly wants to do them.

However, things are a little bit different now. In case you haven't noticed, Will Smith has been in a bunch of bad movies over the last few years. So he might be willing to make Bad Boys 3—pretty much a guaranteed hit—a priority. And that might in turn explain why Martin Lawrence (and presumably Jerry Bruckheimer) decided to announce that the threequel is in the works on Conan last night.

Skip to 3:15 in the video below for the announcement.

It should be noted, however, that "working on a script" does not mean the movie is a go just yet. One would have to assume that Will Smith and maybe even Michael Bay would have to sign on for the project to get the green light. And that will take some work.

But hey, it's a start, right?

[via /Film]

Harrison Ford Is All Better Now, So Filming of ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ Will Resume This Month

As you probably know, Harrison Ford broke his leg on the set of Star Wars: Episode VII back in June. For a while J.J. Abrams and company fed us a line of bull about how production would totally stay on schedule once they made a few minor tweaks. Earlier this month, however, the inevitable happened. The production finally succumbed to Han Solo's injury and went on a two-week hiatus. (You probably noticed when the earth stopped spinning and the sky turned crimson red.)

Well, on Monday Harrison Ford was out strutting his stuff on the red carpet at the premier of Expendables 3, and while the rest of the film's stars were using canes and walkers ('cause they're all so old), Indiana Jones was walking around all fit and limber and ready to go. Now The Hollywood Reporter is saying a source told them that  J.J. and the gang will resume filming in London later this month.

Will Ford be joining them right away? That remains unclear. But it won't be too long, and the main takeaway here is that Star Wars fans can take a big sigh of relief. Episode VII will probably still hit theaters December 18, 2015.


The World Mourns the Loss of Robin Williams

There aren't many actors in Hollywood to whom I would apply the genius label, because on the whole I think acting is a vastly overrated profession. But Robin Williams? That guy was a fucking genius.

Unfortunately, like so many creative geniuses throughout history, Robin Williams also suffered from addiction and depression. And yesterday the world lost him forever, which is terribly, terribly sad.

Of course, as is always the case now when somebody important or famous dies, people around the world took to social media to express their sorrow. And while I usually find myself unaffected by these virtual, electronic professions, I'll be damned if I didn't get something in my eye while browsing the Twittersphere this morning.

In case you don't do Twitter yourself, here are some of the most notable celebrity reactions, starting with one from the Commander and Chief himself:

Of course, my personal favorite tribute to Robin Williams came, surprisingly enough, from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. And it wasn't even on Twitter. It was on Facebook:

Rest in peace, Robin Williams.

‘Batman v Superman’ Producer Says Batfleck Will Be in His 40s, Not His 50s

Last Monday, a photo of a gray-haired Ben Affleck on the set of Batman v Superman emerged. Then some sort of inside source talked about a batcave with a tattered Robin outfit and claimed this version of Batman has been fightin' crime for 30 years, putting him in his mid 50s. All of that jibed with what director Zach Snyder had previous said about the character—that he'd be older and more grizzled—and everyone immediately started speculating that Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice would draw heavily from Frank Miller's seminal The Dark Knight Returns comic book miniseries.

Well I hate to rain on the nerd parade, but it turns out the film isn't going to follow The Dark Knight Returns quite as closely as some were starting to believe. Sure, Batman will still be older. But rather than a Batman who comes out of retirement in his 50s to fight crime again, in Batman v Superman we're getting a Batman who's about a decade younger than Miller's Dark Knight. And this comes straight from the mouth of film producer Michael Uslan in a recent interview with Asbury Park Press.

So, this [controversial superhero casting] has happened time and again, and it happened with Affleck. To go back to the original thought of Bruce Wayne in his mid-40s, I think he’s going to be extraordinary.

The lesson here? Everyone just chill out with the speculation. They'll eventually finish the movie, and then we can all watch it and explain how terrible it is in 2,000-world essays, just like we always do.