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July 24, 2008 |

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | July 24, 2008 |


It’s funny about Internet rumors. They are often created, I suspect, out of thin air, but after the Internet trades — ourselves, Slashfilm, Cinematical, AICN, JoBlo, MovieWeb, FirstShowing, etc. — get finished hashing out the rumors, more times than not, it seems, the same item will reappear a few months later, fully confirmed. An industry friend once told me that this is exactly how it works: Float the idea as rumor, deny it while seeing if the rumor sticks, and if it does, seal the deal. I can’t count the number of comic book films, remakes, and video and board game movies we’ve speculated upon, only to see them become sad realities (I’m still waiting for that “Punky Brewster” movie, though. It’s coming. Mark my word).

Anyway, this week’s biggest scuttlebutt is a doozy; every headline about it has come with a question mark attached, but I want to y’all to mark it in your minds, so that — in a few months — we can see whether or not that rumor theory holds true. In this particular case, I’m terrified it will. The headline? Tom Cruise set to reprise Maverick in Top Gun sequel? It has gotten that bad for the guy, and if the offer is made, my money is on him accepting it. At this point in his career, dude couldn’t open a Twinkie’s wrapper. The premise of Top Gun II: Ramrodders, so it is rumored, will be that it will take place 20 years later, Maverick will be a flight trainer, and he’s going to have to deal with an uppity chick with a rebellious streak. Welcome to the B-list, Tom.

(Update: Reports have come out denying the rumor. Step II completed.)

Also: Can we just get a remake sabbatical? Maybe not all remakes, just of movies made since 1980. I think legislation should be passed. Please write your congressmen.

And speaking of sweaty men, Peter Berg (Hancock, Friday Night Lights) is set to direct Hercules: The Thracian Wars, based on a five-issue comic series from Steve Moore. Ryan Condal has been hired to write the script. He has absolutely no credits to his name. Only the select few who have bothered to read the comics know anything about premise, but I’m pretty sure he eats Disney’s Little Mermaid in the final act. Meanwhile, what the fuck, Berg? You go from the under-appreciated Very Bad Things to Friday Night Lights to Hancock to fucking Hercules. Not to mention this: He’s already set to direct Dune (yeah, that Dune; the Frank Herbert one). Plus he’s still doing “FNL” the TV show and creating another one, “Virtuality,” due out this fall. Man Alive. Berg used to have some meat and potatoes on that full plate. Now it’s strange meat and beefcake. You’re gonna get fat, dude. Like, Michael Bay fat. Well, maybe not Michael Bay fat — I understand, at the end of his career, he wants to go out in style by gorging himself until he personally explodes onto the screen, which will elicit the sort of ovation that can destroy small towns. Helluva swan song. Can’t wait!

Hey y’all! Remember Valley Girl? No. Of course you don’t. It’s a 25-year-old movie and it sucked, unless you were 12 and caught it on HBO at 3 a.m. after Dragonslayer. And the only thing it had going for it, really, was Modern English’s “I’ll Stop the World and Melt with You.” Well guess what? MGM is remaking it. As a musical! Hot diggity dogshit! Better still, it’ll be a musical with 80’s numbers. Maybe great songs like, “Ricky Don’t Lose that Number” or “Pump up the Jams” and then close that fucker with Chicago’s “You’re the Inspiration.” (Mini-diversion: Worst 80s song?) I suspect they’ll keep the original premise intact, which was about a valley girl in high school who dumps her boyfriend (via the old “here’s your ID bracelet back” trick) to date a Hollywood punk, played by Nicolas Cage in his first role not using the name Nicolas Coppola. The Valley Girl was played by Deborah Foreman, who looks like someone born to star in an aerobic fitness infomercial (she would later star in April Fool’s Day and Lobster Man from Mars, a.k.a. “The Biggest Lobster Tail Ever.” *groan*). Shit. Where was I? Oh yeah: Since punks no longer exist in the real world (thanks blink-182, you broke punk), I’m sure it’ll be about an emo kid and a prom queen — think Pete Wentz and Ashlee Simpson, then take a bottle of Xanax and swallow your pain away.

In other movie news, iF Magazine learned from Doug Liman, the director of The Bourne Identity and the producer of the superior sequels, that a script is being written for a fourth, and the hope is that Damon will be back as Jason Bourne. However, Liman admits that it could go on without him:

“Jason Bourne is a movie star. I think Matt Damon is not as big a movie star as Jason Bourne is. Daniel Craig is a movie star, but James Bond is more of a movie star.”

You’re so wrong, Liman. Matt Damon is Jason Bourne, and if you try to run the show with some two-bit generic actor with nice pecs you’ll find out just how quickly the franchise will sink. On the other hand, as I think he’s probably learned, especially after Jumper, “Doug Liman is a director. I think Doug Liman is not as big a movie director as Paul Greengrass is.”

Elsewhere, Louis Leterrier, who directed The Incredible Hulk, revealed that Edward Norton will appear in The Avengers movie, along with another Avengers character that will be introduced in Iron Man 2. Sam Jackson is also set to appear in The Avengers as Nick Fury, along with whoever is ultimately cast as Thor and Captain America. Then again, what the fuck does Louis Leterrier know?


Finally, if you haven’t heard already, “At the Movies with Ebert and Roeper” will no longer exist in its current incarnation come this fall. Both Ebert and Roeper have left the show, and apparently they are revising the format to make it more Access Hollywoody. They’ve hired a couple of talking douche heads, Ben Lyons (who does red carpet coverage) and Ben Mankiewics (who does a TMZ television show) — to replace them. I’m sure it’ll be nothing but quick edits, puff pieces, and digitally enhanced thumbs now. I admit I was never a huge fan of the show, ironically enough because I always felt that Ebert was too mean (it’s one thing in print, but it feels so personal on television), but I’m nevertheless bummed that the one respectable television show devoted to movie reviews will be turned into a Seacrest-like dog and pony show. Man — the kids aren’t just walking across our lawns these days, they’re stopping to piss in our grass. *shakes fist*

The Trailer Watch

In our first trailer, hey! Guess who is an absolutely lousy romantic lead opposite Zooey Deschanel? Jim Carrey. Oy. Yes Man looks like an unfunny sequel to Liar Liar. Come on, Jim. You can do better (and Zooey! Shame on you.)

Next up, Surfer Dude. You know, McConaughey has made some awful movies in his career — in fact, most of them are. But this is the first time I’ve ever actually felt embarrassed for him. Try watching this trailer without wincing. It hurts my soul to watch.

Finally, here’s a second trailer for Twilight. The verdict? I still don’t get it? People are excited about this movie? Show them to me. I don’t believe you.

Finally, after the five minutes it took you to blow through today’s round-up, is “Kokomo” still caught in your head? Yeah?


Keep it going: We’ll get there fast and then we’ll take it slow. That’s where we wanna go. Way down in Kokomo.

You can thank me this afternoon, when it’s still caught in your head.

The Daily Trade Round-Up / Dustin Rowles

Industry | July 24, 2008 |

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here or follow him on Twitter.

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