Is Dr Bravestone brave enough for Jumanji 2017?

Actor and comedian Kevin Hart has shared a first glimpse of Jumanji 2017, slated for release next year.

The photo reveals the main cast on their first day of shooting in Hawaii, wearing some ridiculously revealing kaki ‘safari’ clothes standing side by side in character. The picture depicts (from the far left), Kevin Hart, Dwayne Johnson as Dr. Bravestone, Karen Gillan as Martha, and finally Jack Black to the far right.

First Jumanji photo from Kevin Heart's Instagram
First Jumanji photo from Kevin Hart’s Instagram

Jumanji 2017 a continuation of the original

The 2017 rendition of Jumanji comes as a continuation of the original 1995 film starring the late Robin Williams and Kristen Dunst. Jumanji’s plot is based around a mystical board game that unleashes a world of adventure once players have their first roll of the dice. While exploring their new home, two curious children find the jungle-themed board game, but when they begin playing, they free a trapped man (Robin Williams) who’s been stuck in the game’s inner jungle world for decades. The children go on an adventure to free the man captured in this Jumanji world. Inadvertently, they have stumbled into a game that wreaks havoc with stampedes and menacing monkeys until one player wins.

Originally thought to be a reboot of yet another 90s adventure film, Johnson thankfully disclosed that the film would be in fact a “continuation”, following the rugged adventurer Dr. Bravestone. It does make more sense to continue the story in terms of the plot, as the board game was merely hidden after the last film, and continued to exist, pounding its lethal African drumming beat.

Jumanji 2017 character profiles

Kevin Hart

To any of you Jumanji fans like me, I am sorry to say that any high hopes I originally had for this film have unfortunately been set alight and disintegrated after witnessing Kevin Hart’s desecration of the Jumanji name in his photo. Like any of the 10,000 new Kevin Hart and Dwayne Johnson films these days, Hart will of course be playing a more cowardice and nervous character, typically seen dressed in over-sized clothing to emphasise the fact that he’s small. Yes, he’s small: cool, let’s move on from it.

Dwayne Johnson as Dr Bravestone

And Johnson of course will be playing the more heroic character who’s experienced some emotional wreckage in his past childhood, again with some unnecessarily tight clothing (none of which is actually suited for the jungle).

Karen Gillan

Oh gosh, and let’s not even get started on Karen Gillan’s costume. I mean, I thought Hollywood was trying to prove (or at least hide the fact) that they’re not misogynistic.

Jack Black

Finally we have Jack Black, who reminds me of going to a boring museum and seeing one small sculpture that looks exactly like a good friend, making an altogether terrible experience, a tad enjoyable. What I mean by this is that his character reminds me of Carl Denham, Black’s character in the 2005 film King Kong, whose familiar and loveable appearance gives me a dash of satisfaction.

Jack Black in King Kong, all wide wallpapers
Jack Black in King Kong, all wide wallpapers

Huh… that was good to get out my system.

Jumanji 2017 – a homage to great original cinema

What I do think this new film can bring to the table is that hopefully it will encourage the younger generation to go out and watch the 1995 Jumanji. Even better, it could start an entire trend towards inspiring people to go see other Robin William films, such as Aladdin, Mrs. Doubtfire, Patch Adams, Good Morning Vietnam, and eventually Good Will Hunting.

Robin Williams' freed Alan Parrish in the 1995 Jumanji, movie boom
Robin Williams’ freed Alan Parrish in the 1995 Jumanji. Source: Movie Boom

Jumanji will be out July 28, 2017 and is being directed by Jake Kasdan, staring Kevin Heart, Dwayne Johnson, Karen Gillan, Jack Black and Nick Jonas.

Grease up your heavy armoured rust collecting vehicles and get ready to fuel up for the upcoming prequel to Mad Max: Fury Road.

Upon getting up the other morning with my usual coffee and skim of the newspaper, I was thrilled to see an Australian article verifying the project.

Right off the bat, I can say any news of this film will have me gripped to the edge of my chair, all the way up to its release. After the cinematic success of the first reboot to the Mad Max franchise (Fury Road), I can’t imagine how they will again stun me with their all-up brilliance. But I am ready to find out.

Mad Max: Fury Road car chase scene, el agente cine
Mad Max: Fury Road car chase scene. Source: Al Agente Cine.

Australian director and 71-year-old veteran of the game George Miller is returning to the barren desert wasteland (or Broken Hill NSW at least) to step up to his admired directing role. And with pre-production gearing up, and Warner Bros. pumping in a mammoth budget, we could see the first shoot date as soon as December this year. But who knows if this scheduled date will hold up.

If you compare it to their luck in the past, I struggle to see how this film will keep within 6 months of its intended schedule.

Mad Max: Fury Road was blistered by delays when extended rain turned the Australian desert green, while the location scout relocated some 12,000kms away to Namibia. Fingers crossed Miller’s original plan holds up and the desert doesn’t turn neon pink.

The script titled Mad Max: The Wasteland is expected to focus more on Charlize Theron’s character Furiosa, after many argued that she was the main protagonist over Tom Hardy’s Max Rockatansky. But Hardy fans have no fear, as the man whose world is fire and blood will definitely be making a very noticeable appearance.

Mad Max: The Wasteland artist's logo, taringa
Mad Max: The Wasteland artist’s logo. Source: Taringa

However, the duo (Hardy and Theron) will have to put their famous feud to one side and move on during their new project. During the Fury Road shoot,

Hardy’s intense method acting clashed with Theron’s high-maintenance, making the two a terror to deal with on set. Yet, for a film that racked in an immense $378,436,354.00 and walked away with 10 Academy Award nominations and six wins, I think they won’t have any problems putting up with each other for another couple of months.

My excitement levels surrounding this upcoming project are sky-rocketing. If anyone needs me, you can find me dancing in the streets (that’s me in the picture below, obviously).

Me singing in the street, win wallpapers
Me singing in the street. Source: Win Wallpapers.

1980s sci-fi action movies are traveling back to the future and into the 21st century. Now alongside Ghostbusters, Blade Runner and Tron, the 1987 film Predator is getting revamped and remade for a 2018 feature.

It’s almost as though Hollywood has finally realised that most of today’s films just don’t live up to, nor have the same abundant meaning and values as those a couple of decades ago.

Yet instead of re-inventing itself with purposeful stories and ideas, they have taken the easy way round by literally defibrillating such old-time classics just enough to keep them afloat and barely breathing. But FYI Hollywood, this is not necessarily a good thing. Haven’t you ever heard the saying ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’? I suggest leaving those films back where they belong or soon enough people will begin viewing timeless classics as cheap-humoured reboots.

The Predator, Youtube
The Predator. Source: YouTube.

Anyhow, as the production of Predator charged on, it picked up director slash writer Shane Black, whose work can be seen in Iron Man 3 and The Nice Guys – two fairly comedic scripts.

But will we see the same light comedy in his new sequel? I can’t confirm news on the light comedy front, but in terms of the 2018 film being a direct sequel to the first and foremost Predator, Black came out earlier this year to state that this is “an inventive sequel”. This doesn’t exactly disclose much about any plot or story details, but thanks anyway Mr Black.

While the original script saw Arnold Schwarzenegger rip apart some alien insides, this time round Benicio del Toro is likely to take the starring role. Del Toro can be most recently seen in the 2015 action film Sicario, so if you want to familiarise yourselves with some of his previous work before the release of what is currently titled ‘The Predator’, that will be your best bet. This is the fourth edition of the Predator series hopefully still featuring the invisible, bloodthirsty alien.

Benicia del Toro in Sicario, clture
Benicia del Toro in Sicario. Source: Culture.

When first asked about the film, Black went on to explain his approach as “an attempt to ‘event-ise’ the Predator again… [An attempt to] make it more mysterious.

The Predator has been so overdone. Every couple of years, there’s a knock-off churned out. Very low budget with a guaranteed return.”

Black continued by saying he hoped to achieve “the same sense of wonderment and newness that Close Encounters had when that came out. That’s what we want. It’s very impossible. But we’re gonna try.” He also spoke of keeping the relatively intimate scale of the original film: “It doesn’t have to be 50 Predators riding motorcycles. It just has to feel like a powerful story that has a lot of flavours and textures.”

Predator director Shane Black beside The Predator, joblo
Predator director Shane Black beside The Predator. Source: Joblo

And while Black did keep his ideas short and to the point, he did reveal one intriguing detail, that “the hero of the film, the name I’ve given the guy, is Quinn McKenna.”

Hmmm Quinn McKenna, I do like the sound of that! Very slick, isn’t it?

The film is slated for release on February 9 2018.

Remember the good old days when we actually wanted to pay extra to wear uncomfortable paper glasses and have fake images thrown at your head?

Ahhh, the good old days. But are those days really over? Are 3D movies actually dead? And does that mean we need to accept the fact that Shark Boy and Lava Girl might not actually be real?

Let’s Explore.

Avatar, hd wallpapers
Avatar. Source: HD Wallpapers

Ever since James Cameron’s Avatar exploded onto the big screen in fantastical fashion, 3D has never quite been the same.

Seven years on and studios are still investing in three dimensional films, exhausting a (what once was) amazing feat.

By now, most people have fathomed up some sense and realise that the latest 3D films are not worth the extra buck or two (or seven). Nor are most people nowadays willing to put on an uncomfortable, ill-fitting, pair of cheap 3D glasses – especially ones that fit over your regular prescriptions and ride all the way down to the tip of your shnoz, dipping in the hay-fever infested pool of snot. But surely when the movie starts this is all forgotten amongst the encapsulating array of visual brilliance? Well, not necessarily.

Beowulf, wall alpha coders
Beowulf. Source: Wall Alpha Coders.

These days, 3D films do not even seem as though they are intended to be in 3D, incorporating merely the occasional effect and a lingering depth of field that seems more awkward than exciting. Movies have become more about looking genuine and real than an all hands on deck blown out of proportion effects performance. And there is reason for it.

A brief history of 3D movies

The early 2000s were home to some of the finest, yet most ridiculous 3D films in history. Leading up to Avatar, 3D films used to be all about excessive things being thrown at you and really unnecessary and extravagant use of props, making cinema-goers feel more like they were in a carnival showground than a movie theatre.

The wonders of 3D glasses...
The wonders of 3D glasses…

The cheesy effects and cheap gags made watching these hilarious and fun. I enjoyed occasionally paying an extra charge to come out of the cinema and say “what the hell was that? It didn’t even make sense!” only to realise in hindisight how much fun those 1 and a half hours actually were.

Do they still make 3D movies?

Today, the novelty of 3D is gone. The early 2000s thrived on new experiences. There was a childish thrill in putting on those crazy looking blue and red glasses and peering around at your friends laughing to deliver the over-used joke: “OMG you look 3D with these on!” Nowadays, anything remotely similar to this is just irritating, and the buzz of 3D is, sadly, tired and quickly disappearing.

So what do you think: are 3D movies well and truly dead? Maybe you can persuade me otherwise. Either comment or send me a message if you want to convince me that 3D movies are not a lost art.

With the second half of 2016 well underway, it’s obvious that movie-goers aren’t taking a strong liking to Hollywood’s gut-wrenching obsession with remakes. Compared to last year’s record high, ticket sales have dropped a harsh 15%.

Before I dive into some of the biggest Box Office flops of 2016 (so far), let’s first explore what actually makes a movie flop.

To simplify it, a film should be making between 3-4 times more than its production budget at the global box office before it can begin making any profit. So, for example, if a film only doubles its budget in the international box office, the chances of it becoming profitable even with DVD and streaming sales are extremely slim – unless of course there is a hidden treasure in the DVD cases causing a mass frenzy of sales. But I think I can safely say that’s pretty unlikely.

So to sum up, a film that loses its studio’s money, is in turn a flop.

Deadpool, cinema blend
Deadpool. Source: Cinema Blend

Ben-Hur

Ben-Hur has an established legacy and esteemed reputation… well, the 1959 Charlton Heston-led version does at least. While the original film smashed box office sales, as well as conquered a couple Academy Awards in its golden run, the 2016 remake has conquered little to nothing. The $100 million dollars spent on the new film has been comparable to lending your friend a book: they were never getting it back. Ben-Hur was predicted to be lucky if it could scrape the barrel with $10 million dollars on its opening weekend, which is a huge low-blow for almost any blockbuster. Even though MGM have a small amount left in the marketing budget, it’s very hard to imagine them breaking even on this one, let alone making any profit.

Ghostbusters

Ghostbusters
Ghostbusters. Source: Sony.

If I could first establish that this is not my opinion of the year’s worst flops, merely fact; hence this is not a plan to inflame the very very mixed emotions behind the reboot of Ghostbusters. Now, feelings aside, for the recent film to make any overall profit, it is estimated that it will have to make over $400 million. I know, I know, it seems like an absolute tone! However, if you crunch the numbers, it will take a total of $150-$200 million dollars out of Sony’s deep deep pockets. But how did we get to these numbers, right? Well I’m glad you asked. Production on the film was $144 million; marketing, adverting and distribution were another $150 million; all on top of the fact that the studios only make about ½ to 2/3 of the ticket sales from the box office.

So as it stands, with a total of $224 million dollars’ worth of box office sales, Sony are still only sitting at roughly $515 million. We then need to minus a legitimate estimate from merchandising and DVD sales, which would be around $100 million. This ultimately takes the box office sales required to break even to approximately $400 million dollars.

This bad loss for Sony gets worse, with the official Ghostbusters video game going bankrupt merely three days after its release in July. Well, I suppose its just another year doing chores around the house for Sony, trying to recuperate their losses one way or another.

The Finest Hour

The Finest Hours, shane the gamer
The Finest Hours. Source: Shane the Gamer.

Disney took a near $75 million backlash from The Finest Hours, a movie about heroism within the U.S. Coast Guard that generated a mediocre $52 million worldwide. Compare this to other Disney-Pixar flicks: on average, they have earned an astonishing $760 million each at the world box office. It isn’t too difficult to spot the irony in The Finest Hours. For the life of them, they couldn’t even muster nearly a fine hour of cinema in the one hour and fifty-seven minute movie. This was all made a little more embarrassing by the Disney CEO Bob Iger, who had only recently praised the 30% raise in average return profits from 2014 to 2015. He may have to change his figures now.

Gods of Egypt

Gods of Egypt, alpha coders
Gods of Egypt. Source: Alpha Coders

This may come as a shock to you, but Gods of Egypt was originally predicted to open with box office numbers just under that of Deadpool. Correct, the same Deadpool that opened with a monstrous $132.7 million in its first weekend of release.

Gods of Egypt on the other hand struggled on its opening weekend with a lousy $14 million. That stat looks even worse when viewing it in light of its excessively big budget of $140 million. To put that in perspective for you, Deadpool cost $58 million to make and doubled its spending in the first weekend. Gods of Egypt lost approximately $126 million in the same time. We can be certain of one thing: that person who predicted Gods of Egypt would second Deadpool is definitely out of a job. But on the upside, Lionsgate did save quite a bit of money by shooting in Australia, protecting itself from an even more depressing loss through a 46% production incentive from the Australian government. Still, tens of millions of dollars down the drain.

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, so is it any good?
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. Source: Paramount.

Unlike many other films on this list with digits into the hundreds, Paramount Pictures only financed Whiskey Tango Foxtrot for $35 million. And it’s no wonder why. As history confirms, political war comedies are a difficult selling point. This certainly isn’t aided by ineffective trailers emphasising light comedy and very mixed reviews. However, despite such weak marketing material, Paramount did invest heavily into the film’s promotion, with over $13 million spent on TV spots before and after its release, plus millions on print, online, radio, billboard, booking fees and more. The film was pursuing an opening between $10 – $12 million. Although to no surprise, it came in below expectations with $7.5 million in the first week, and a low ball decline to $4.6 million, then $2.8 million in the weeks that followed.

The Chief Executive of Viacom, Philippe Dauman said that the box office failure of both Whiskey Tango Foxtrot and Zoolander 2 put the studio $136 million in debt. As it stands today, the films’ combined box office sit at $24.9 million USD. Far from the mark. Far from any mark, except the mark of a hefty cost.

Having a boring week? How about I spruce things up for you with Fifteen Fascinating Film Facts that’ll definitely get you thinking?

I’ve scouted through the hard covers, the soft covers and the vastness of the world wide web in order to bring you the top fifteen most captivatingly interesting film facts out there.

1: Duuuude

In The Big Lebowski, the word “Dude” is used 161 times. In fact, to be more precise, it’s uttered 160 times, as well as once in the credits during the second dream sequence titled ‘Gutterballs’. Jeff Bridges, whom you may also refer to as ‘The Dude’, says his catchphrase “man” 147 times, equating to nearly 1.5 times a minute. In addition to this, the ‘child-friendly’ flick includes 292 variations of the F-word. Now that’s a lot of F-n’ times. And this brings us to our next fascinating fact:

2: The F bomb

The F-word is used 265 times in Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, surprisingly not as much as The Big Lebowski, a far less-explicit film.

Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction, cinema blend
Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction: Source: Cinema Blend

3: The Return of the Ford

When the original Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope was made, both Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill signed on for a three-picture deal, while Harrison Ford refused. The writers hence came up with a plan to freeze Ford’s character Han Solo in carbonite, just in case he decided not to return for a third film. Luckily enough, as we all know, he came back for a third and fourth instalment.

4: 1999 Avatar?

James Cameron’s Avatar was put on hold for an additional eight years, after the director wanted the original release date to be set for 1999. The film, which consisted of 60% CGI and special effects, was way too expensive to make before the 2000s. At the time, all studios turned their backs on the project after crunching the numbers and estimating a total spending fee upwards of $400 million to produce his masterpiece. Wow, that’s a lot of pocket change.

5: Lord of the on-screen deaths

Lord of the Rings: Return of the King holds the record for the highest body count of any movie ever made, blowing smoke out the water with 836 on-screen deaths. This record tramples on any other film, with the number two spot going to Kingdom of Heaven (2005), 226 fewer deaths then the epic proportions of Lord of the Rings.

25 deadliest films by on-screen deaths graph, Randal Olson
25 deadliest films by on-screen deaths graph. Source: Randal Olson

6: Ryan Gosling as The Joker?

Ryan Gosling was sought after as the first choice for The Joker role in Suicide Squad. He reportedly turned down the role because he did not want to sign the multi-picture contract that Warner Bros. required.

7: Take your time

On average, 4.3 seconds of the new film Kubo and the Two Strings was created each week. As a whole, the stop motion film took a whopping 5 years to make, all for the total running time of 1 hour and 41 minutes. It takes number one spot in the record books for the longest stop-motion film to date, knocking out Coraline (2009) by a single minute. Which brings me to my next fascinating fact:

The making of Kubo and the Two Strings, aimag
The making of Kubo and the Two Strings. Source: Aimag

8: Take more time

The 1976 film Rocky was shot in merely 28 days. That’s about 1272 less days than Kubo and the Two Strings.

9: Captain America: Actor War

In Captain America: Civil War, actor Sebastian Stan (Bucky) sent a message to Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man), which read: “Looking forward to our scene tomorrow Robert”, alongside a video of himself performing high-intensity bicep curls beside a decapitated Iron Man head. This was in preparation for a fight scene the following day.

10: Spielberg > God

And the award for most mentioned name in Oscar history goes to… Steven Spielberg! (tremendous applause). According to a study on Academy Award speeches, Spielberg has been thanked more times than God. With a mention in 42 out of 1396 acceptance speeches, the winning director tops the table, followed by Harvey Weinstein at 34 and James Cameron at 28.

11: Paranormal banking activity

Paranormal Activity stands as the most profitable movie ever made. It cost less than $15,000 to produce and grossed over $193 million, with $22 million of that made on the opening weekend.

12: Sean Bean has nine lives

Actor Sean Bean has been dying over and over again for more than 20 years now. From being dropped off a satellite dish in Goldeneye, to having his head decapitated in Game of Thrones (sorry for the spoiler, but if you’re not up to date by now, you had this coming), Bean has died in 32% of all his movies. Congratulations Mr Bean, you have the highest on-screen death percentage of any living actor of note. On the other hand, actor John Hurt holds the record for dying in more than 40 different films, including Alien and V for Vendetta.

movie/tv on-screen deaths, econsultancy
Movie/TV on-screen deaths tally. Source: Econsultancy

13: Coppola vs. The Mafia

Have you ever noticed that ‘the mafia’ is never mentioned in Francis Coppola’s The Godfather? Coppola was nearly swimming with the fishes after real-life mobster Joseph Colombo declared war on the picture, fearing additional spotlight on his ‘organisation’. Ultimately, Coppola and his producers put their cards on the table and the film was allowed to proceed, of course not without minor changes to the script. However, after becoming so involved with the film’s production, poor Colombo’s own family called in a favour and knocked the mafiosa’s off (had him killed).

14: Fight Club fights Starbucks

Director David Fincher has made claims that there is at least one Starbucks coffee cup visible in every scene of his movie Fight Club. And although this Easter-egg coffee cup hunt may seem completely random, this isn’t just some arbitrary joke. The notion that big brands such as Starbucks have the marketing power to influence world culture is actually included in the script, which states: “When deep space exploration ramps us, it’ll be the corporations that name everything, the IBM Stellar Sphere, the Microsoft Galaxy, Planet Starbucks.”

There is even a blog dedicated to locating every cup of Starbucks coffee in frame, which can be seen in this link here.

15: Sneaky Will Hunting

Not many people know this, but the original Good Will Hunting script included a fairly graphic sex scene between two of the main male characters. Rookie writers Ben Affleck and Matt Damon intentionally put a random sex scene in the original script in order to see which production company actually took the time to properly read their draft. One of the main reasons Harvey Weinstein landed the job as executive producer for this highly successful movie is because he was one of the only ones who noticed the seemingly out of place scene. On The Graham Norton Show earlier this year, Weinstein accepted that he got the job when both Affleck and Damon explained that they included the scene “because every studio executive (they) went to… no one brought that scene up… maybe no body read it themselves.” He continued to say he was “the only guy that brought it up”, thus scoring him the esteemed job of a lifetime.

The untitled Wolverine sequel is the X-men franchise’s ninth instalment, and will unfortunately mark the end of Hugh Jackman’s highly successful 17-year era as the iconic mutant character.

Jackman’s career truly took off in 2000 when he made his first large-scale blockbuster appearance as Logan, shredding the movie scene ever since.

And while the Jackman legacy may be drawing to an end, X-men is breaking new grounds, becoming the first R-rated Wolverine film. This means that we can expect some seriously graphic stuff, with Logan’s Adamantium claws lashing everywhere, leaving nothing but blood and brilliance.

Alongside Jackman, Patrick Stewart’s long-standing character, ‘Professor X’, may also see the last light of day in the upcoming Wolverine.

In an interview with ITV’s Adam Fowler, Stewart sadly stated: “I would imagine this is probably the end of this franchise for me.” However, if, like me, you’re an enthusiast who’s unwilling to accept the end and thinks it’s always important to be a bearer of hope, Stewart positively continued to say that “the thing about science fiction and fantasy is that you can never, ever say it’s the end.”

Professor X and Wolverine, obsev
Professor X and Wolverine. Source: Obsev.

While official plot details remain undisclosed for the time being, there have been many rumours indicating the film will take place in a distant future, following both Logan and Professor X on an unknown quest.

Stewart added in his interview that we can expect to see a “very different Charles Xavier… nothing like the Charles Xavier you’ve seen in the past.” What this actually means remains a mystery. Speculations have also raised the idea that the two could join forces with a young mutant known as ‘X-23’, a female Wolverine clone who may be introduced to assume the missing role in future X-Men films.

Calling a wrap after finishing shoots in New Mexico, producer Simon Kinberg compared the film to the likes of a western – something very different to the original Wolverine’s Japanese counterpart. However, this is far from reason to be alarmed. Director James Mangold’s previous work on 3:10 to Yuma heavily reassures us that an outstanding R-rated western can be transcended upon our screens.

Although uncommon for celebrities to film themselves at the barber, in honour of his farewell to Logan and the character’s quintessential mutton chops, Jackman shared a video of himself shaving off the dazzling Wolverine sideburns for the last time, via social media. Sadly, this is further proof that it will indeed be his last X-Men appearance.

Jackman has good reason to leave the X-men cast.

In an interview last year, the Aussie revealed the amount of time and effort it takes to maintain the Wolverine’s peak physique, teasing: “it was a gut feeling… I don’t know how many more egg white omelettes I can eat.”

But in all seriousness, the 47-year-old has been keeping a strict and strenuous diet and workout routine for close to two decades now. After the release of X-Men: Days of Future Past, Jackman explained how “it’s absolutely physically demanding”, performing 2.5 hours of hard training each day alongside a strict diet in preparation for the role. And here I am, lounging in my snug armchair with a packet of chips and a soda, writing away. Maybe I’ll change. Maybe I’ll stop eating junk food. Maybe I’ll go workout. I can be as ripped as Hugh! Actually, nah, these chips are just too good.

Hugh Jackman at pre-Wolverine gym workout, bodybuilding
Hugh Jackman at pre-Wolverine gym workout. Source: Bodybuilding

The next chapter of The Wolverine will be released on March 3, 2017 in 3D, 2D and IMAX 3D.

Dude, a Big Lebowski spinoff? No, not The Dude, or His Dudess, or Duder, or El Duderino, but ‘The Jesus’. Let me explain.

John Turturro is reprising his role as Jesus Quintana, better known as ‘The Jesus’, from the Coen Brothers’ 1998 classic, The Big Lebowski.

Screen veteran Turturro has taken on board tenacious triple task of writing, directing and starring in his so-called ‘Lebowski spinoff’, titled Going Places.

The Jesus bowling, imgur
The Jesus bowling. Source: Gramercy Pictures.

‘The Jesus’, a sexually inclined, egotistic purple-suited bowler, is being resurrected in a comedy inspired by the 1974 French film Les Valseuses (Going Places).

As per French slang for “the testicles”, the film’s title already underlines the type of sexually charged, mis-fitting characters and comedy we will be expecting to see in this upcoming project.

Turturro’s ‘The Jesus’ will be taken along a journey, united with a trio of oddball petty-criminals whose obnoxious and erogenous behaviour somehow springs into a story of love. The film will feature the dynamic duo of Turturro and Bobby Cannavale (Vinyl) as the main protagonists, who become heavily involved with a beautiful woman (played by French actress Audrey Tautou) seeking to achieve her first orgasm. Yes, that’s what I said… her first orgasm. The film will also see the likes of Susan Sarandon, who plays an ex-convict, recently released from prison, promising for some really down-right hilarious circumstances.

Les Valseuses (Going Places) 1974 film poster, film affinity
Les Valseuses (Going Places) 1974 film poster. Source: Film Affinity

The prospect of an official Big Lebowski 2 was swiftly shut down by Ethan and Joel Coen, stating earlier this year that if there was a push for a Lebowski sequel, they “don’t think (they’ll) oblige”.

Despite this, it’s unclear if the brothers will be in any part associated with the forthcoming film, but i remain hopeful that their involvement is present in some way or another.

While rumours have arisen that the project is currently being filmed in New York, it remains unclear whether or not the Coen brothers have given Turturro their signed tick of approval to preach the follow-up story of ‘The Jesus’. Nevertheless, Turturro has repeatedly expressed enthusiasm in reprising his role, stating that “if I can get the permission I need, I’d like to return to that role.”

I strongly believe we will see the likes of Jesus Quintana in Turturro’s Going Places.

The upcoming action-RPG from Square Enix will be making its way to Steam on PC, as well as PlayStation 4 in the early months of 2017.

The new NieR installment is the follow-up to its 2010 predecessor, which was released for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

Despite receiving fairly mixed reviews, gamers seemed to agree that behind the weak graphics, NieR was, for the most part, a commendable effort, made interesting by its detailed story and epic audio.

After diverse responses, Square Enix announced last October that a sequel entitled NieR: Automata is under development and to be launched exclusively for Play Station 4, from developer Platinum Games and series wonder-kid Taro Yoko. A year later and ‘exclusively’ has changed its mind, as publishers recently disclosed that the new game is on track for PC as well.

The announcement of NieR: Automata’s PC version was revealed during Gamescom, which kicked off earlier this week.

Series creator Yoko Taro made the announcement in the unique style that has become expected from him. Seen wearing his iconic helmet, fidgeting with a valve, Taro announced that NieR: Automata is coming to Steam in a laid back approach, before holding the valve up to the eye of his mask.

NieR: Automata tells the story of androids 2B, 9S and A2 and their battle to reclaim a machine-driven dystopia overrun by powerful weapons known as machine lifeforms.

Invaders from another world attack without warning, unleashing their secret weapon: ‘the machines’. In the face of this insurmountable threat, the human race is driven from the earth and takes refuge on the moon.

The humans develop an army of android soldiers to fight back against the mechanical horde, but succeed only in slowing its advance. To break the deadlock, a new breed of android infantry is sent into the fray: The YoRHa squad.

“In the forsaken wasteland below, the war between the machines and the androids rages on”, the broadcast announces. “A war that is soon to unveil the long-forgotten truth of this world…”

I suspect that the ‘long-forgotten truth’ will be the linking factor between NieR and NieR: Automata, alongside a clear-cut thematic message concerning what influences change the nature of man.

Nier, gamer headlines
Nier, gamer headlines

All will be revealed soon enough, as NeiR: Automata will be officially released on both Steam and Play Station 4 within the early stages of next year.

For more information you can hit up the NeiR Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/NieRGame, or the official website http://nier-automata.com/

The high-octane racing experience of nine time world champion Valentino Rossi is now available for all players.

Square Enix and Milestone officially released Valentino Rossi The Game for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC on August 16.

Players can engage and race in the exciting world of MotoGP with all-new expanded game modes dedicated to the career of Valentino Rossi, including special 2-wheel and 4-wheel drift, rally, flat track and R1M-only challenges.

Valentino Rossi The Game will feature more than 90 riders from the official 2016 MotoGP, with 18 official tracks and 5 historical tracks from previous seasons.

Riders will be able to relive Rossi’s legendary career in a series of challenges from his debut in 1996 up until 2015.

Players can also start their own career by entering the VR|46 Academy to become the next MotoGP world champion. Through the dream of becoming an Academy rider, players can train and perfect their skills alongside Rossi and his VR|46 Academy Riders at Valentino’s exclusive Rossi Motor Ranch, joining the ranks among one of the world’s greatest riders.

Valentino Rossi ,sports maza
Valentino Rossi. Source: Sports Maza.

The Italian rider is considered to be one of the greatest motorcycle racers of all time. At 37 years of age, Rossi has 9 Grand Prix World Championships under his belt, 7 of which are in the premier class. Now you can join him in the history books. Kinda.

Here’s a list of actors who turned down some huge roles.

Who: Al Pacino

Movie: Star Wars

Turned Down Role: Han Solo

Tough-guy, Italian mobster, hard-core… space explorer? Al Pacino, best known for playing senseless criminals and cops, could have had a very different career path, fighting to destroy the Imperial army rather than the Barzini and Tattaglia families. “There is a museum of mistakes, all the movies I rejected”, said Pacino, who famously tuned down the George Lucas offer that consequently kick started Harrison Ford’s career.

Had Pacino been able to rap his head around the sci-fi script and warm to the Star Wars franchise, who knows what would’ve happened? Not only would Star Wars have been completely unimaginable in the way we know it today, but a butterfly effect could have prompted the demise of Indiana Jones, Scarface or even the world as we know it! Okay, maybe not the world, that’s a bit extreme. In hindsight, although Pacino may have described his decision as a “missed opportunity”, we’re thankful of the way it all panned out.

Han Solo Harrison Ford, ew
Han Solo as Harrison Ford. Source: 20th Century Fox.

Who: Jack Nicholson

Movie: The Godfather

Turned Down Role: Michael Corleone

Another close encounter almost saw Pacino miss out on yet another legendary role. Before Pacino was offered to be the main man in the now timeless mafia classic, the position of Michael Corleone, the Don’s son, was offered to Jack Nicholson, Warren Beatty, Robert Redford, Ryan O’Neal, and Dustin Hoffman. Needless to say, Pacino was not their first pick. But just like a new kid at school being picked last for lunchtime football, Paramount Pictures misjudged how perfect Pacino was for the role, ultimately surprising everyone.

Paramount originally called upon the experienced Nicholson, scared that it would be too risky to bring in some small time up-and-coming actor. Nicholson however declined the role in a true artist manner, rejecting the money and fame because he believed he could not contribute to the film’s true potential: “I knew The Godfather was going to be a great film, but at that time I believed Indians should play roles written for Indians and Italians should do the same.”

Al Pacino Godfather, cineset
Al Pacino in ‘The Godfather’. Source: Paramount.

Who: Matthew Broderick

TV Series: Breaking Bad

Turned Down Role: Walter White

It’s hard to imagine anyone other than Bryan Cranston embodying the high school chemistry teacher/methamphetamine ‘cook’, Walter White. But just as the TV series nearly didn’t make it to air (it was passed on by FX), Cranston’s acclaimed role almost went to Matthew Broderick. According to rumours, Broderick was given an initial script with the idea that if they liked it, the part was his for the taking. However, after hearing Cranston’s name being mentioned, creator Vince Gilligan began to dither over Broderick. Gilligan was reminded of the time he and Cranston collaborated on The X-Files, and ultimately (with the help of persuasion) Cranston was able to seal the tick of approval from the network too.

Another amusing Breaking Bad fact is that Aaron Paul was seemingly “too good-looking” to play Heisenberg’s partner in crime, Jesse Pinkman. Yet as we all know, he turned out to be the bread to Cranston’s butter as a perfect on-screen match.

Matthew Broderick (left) Bryan Cranston (right), purewow
Matthew Broderick (left) Bryan Cranston (right). Source: Purewow.

Who: Will Smith

Movie: The Matrix

Turned Down Role: Neo

Ironically, after choosing to walk away from both star roles in Django Unchained and The Matrix, Will Smith finally gave into Suicide Squad, which (unlike the other two films) was a huge cinematic disappointment. Seventeen years have passed, and I bet Smith is still kicking himself for turning down what would’ve been the role of a lifetime, in one of the most spectacular displays of visual effects and action to date. While Keanu Reeves was walking on walls and dodging bullets, Smith was ‘shining’ in Wild Wild West, a far less successful film… to put it nicely.

Neo's role was nearly given to Will Smith. Source: Warner Bros. Pictures.
Neo’s role was nearly given to Will Smith. Source: Warner Bros. Pictures.

Who: Matt Damon

Movie: Avatar and The Dark Knight

Turned Down Role: Jake Sully and Harvey Dent

Jason Bourne is arguably Matt Damon’s most famous movie character. Yet that may not have been the case if he didn’t decide to back away from some other high-profile roles. James Cameron’s first choice as the lead role in Avatar was Damon, who madly declined due to a scheduling conflict with The Bourne Ultimatum. Instead, as we all know, the job went to Sam Worthington, who I can almost grantee did not regret putting his name to one of the highest grossing movies ever.

Alongside this unfortunate stroke of bad luck, Damon again turned down the role of Harvey Dent (Two-Face) in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight, wishing away his opportunity to act alongside the great Heath Ledger. Damon again stricken with an unlucky scheduling clash. Seriously, how full is this guy’s calendar?

Matt Damon as Jason Bourne, bacon bits
Matt Damon as Jason Bourne. Source: Universal Pictures.

It’s hard to imagine where some of these actors would be today had they not turned down such roles. What impact could we have seen in film if such actors didn’t turn down their roles? And who do you think would’ve played them better?

 

Twenty-three years on and the boys will continue to ride.

The bad boy Miami cops Mike Lowrey (Will Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence) will be arriving back on our screens in 2018 to do what they do best: cause Schwarzenegger-esque collateral damage, smash-up cars and, ultimately, handcuff the bad guys.

Aghh I’m so excited for this I’m gonna explode! ‘Woosah. Woosah’… phew, much better.

Marcus Burnett Woosah, quotes gram
Marcus Burnett Woosah, Source: Quotes Gram.

While Smith and Lawrence have both been confirmed as on board with the project, it fills me with great sadness to say that Michael Bay will not be reprising his role in the director’s chair.

However, all his fans will be pleased to know that the big man himself will still be a major part of production. Bay is making his return as an executive producer, which means that his creative action charm and originality should still shine vibrantly throughout. And although it cannot be 100% confirmed at this point, it’s expected that Joe Carnahan, known for his work in The Grey and The A-Team, will take over as director.

Although the skepticism in me cannot diminish my excitement, I still question the amount of confidence Sony has in the Bad Boys‘ third film.

Its original release date was set to be scheduled for February 2017, but that anticipation was shortly stifled after a decision to set back the release date to June 2017, and yet again to January 12, 2018, where it stands for the time being. I suppose the fact that it was (although briefly) scheduled for a primetime summer slot in June means that the studio must have seen some big potential from this action-comedy. But with three prolonged and unexplained releases? Hmm, that doesn’t seem too confident to me.

Bad Boys for life, screen rant
Bad Boys for life. Source: Screen Rant.

Alongside the most recent date shift comes a new and improved title, Bad Boys For Life (unless they’re planning to change it another couple of times).

Bad boys for life: a notorious quote from the prior series, and one that screams ‘bad ass, narcotic investigating, Miami-destroying, crazy-funny, bad-guy whooping dudes’.

And while fans have been praying for another instalment for a while now (myself included), they will be pleased… no, delighted… no, THRILLED to hear that not one, but two more Bad Boys are in the making, with a fourth chapter being given a (probably indefinite) release date for 2019.