July 29, 2008 | Comments ()

By Daniel Carlson | Trade News | July 29, 2008 |


The list of 1980s artifacts that should be left to die in that hollow decade is long; off the top of my head, I can think of leg warmers, “Jem,” and Tommy Stowe, the kid who bullied me off and on for a while in elementary school and who once tripped me in the bathroom, knocking me face first into a garbage can that chipped my front tooth. But of all the pop culture detritus from the era that’s better left alone, RoboCop is especially moronic. Paul Verhoeven’s film, which wields satire with all the subtlety and precision of Zack Snyder on Red Bull, is an awesome symbol of the era’s worst moviemaking: stiff, bloody, and completely stupid. But damn it all if MGM doesn’t want to plow the ground over one more time to see if there’s anything left. Darren Aronofsky — yes, the same guy who did Pi and Requiem for a Dream — has signed on to direct David Self’s script. The movie is being fast-tracked for a 2010 release, so in two short years, we’ll have gone from The Dark Knight to a new RoboCop. Good grief. The studio is keeping the logline under wraps for now, though it’s safe to assume RoboCop will shoot someone with a gun pulled from his thigh, and that some dude will be doused in toxic waste before getting plowed into a splattery mess by a car.

Well, while Prisco was braving the trade floor and throwing himself into Hall H all weekend at Comic-Con, I went to a comedy show and watched “The Wire.” The thing is, I like what I like, and part of me doesn’t want to spend the weekend in a windowless room listening to Joel Silver tell me what movies I have to see, you know? Anyway, one of the trillion bits of news to trickle out of San Diego over the weekend is that director Francis Lawrence is “trying to figure out some ideas” for a prequel to I Am Legend. “But Dan,” one might ask, “I’m not at all an informed moviegoer, and in fact am so challenged that I require live-in care around the clock, and even I know that the film was a postapocalyptic journey into cartoony vampire madness. Why would a prequel be necessary?” To which I would reply, after patting you on the head, that the original movie has made close to $600 million worldwide, which is just ridiculous, so talk of a sequel is all but inevitable. And since the world had pretty much ended in the last one, you have to go backward, regardless of the fact that no one will really care what happened just before the movie we already saw. Welcome to Hollywood.

Also, seriously, if the new Tron movie really winds up being called Tr2n, I will light someone up.

Here’s one for the fantasy kids in the audience: Relativity Media announced this week that it has acquired the film rights to David Anothony Durham’s fantasy novel Acacia: The War With the Mein. My favorite thing about books like these is how they all seem to have similarly outlandish and dumb titles. They’re so easy to make up, too. Come up with a vaguely militaristic title, a suitably “epic” subhead, slap them on either side of a colon, and you’re done. Bloodmoon Warriors: The Harrowing. I just made that up. Treewind’s First Song: Book 1 of the Krelnar Battles. Really, you can do it all day. Anyway, Acacia, which will be adapted by Andrew Grant, involves the assassination of King Akaran, his kingdom’s ensuing war with the Mein, and what the hell, a series of maps at the front of the book. Eat up.

Onward to the trailer watch. First up is the teaser for Oliver Stone’s W., due out this fall. I’m still trying to reconcile the awkward sexual feelings I now have for Laura Bush after seeing Elizabeth Banks in the role:

Here’s a teaser for Disney/Pixar’s Up, and “teaser” is definitely the word since it’s only 45 seconds long. The film is about an old widower who sails his house to Venezuela to explore the wilderness and live out a dream he shared with a long-lost love. The film comes out next summer; you will probably cry.

Finally, let me leave you with the clip for The Brothers Bloom, the new one from writer-director Rian Johnson, who was also responsible for the awesome Brick. His new one looks different, but still promising:

Daniel Carlson is the managing editor of Pajiba and a low-level employee at a Hollywood industry magazine. You can visit his blog, Slowly Going Bald.

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The Daily Trade Round-Up / Daniel Carlson

Trade News | July 29, 2008 | Comments ()



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