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LASERLINKS 10-28-11

Happy Halloween, everybody! If you don’t already know, LaserLinks is a collection of news bits, casting announcements, trailers, and other geekery that I didn’t get a chance to write about during the week. And away we go….

The Avengers

Director/Writer Joss Whedon wrote and directed an entire movie in secret while on a break from shooting on the massive superhero team-up movie. It’s an adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, and it features a ton of familiar nerd names like Amy Acker from Angel/Dollhouse, Sean Maher from Firefly, and self-proclaimed King of the Geeks, Nathan Fillion. There is no word on a distribution deal or release date as of yet. Source: Reuters.

Hunger Games

Here’s a new gallery of stills and posters from this upcoming adaptation of the hugely popular YA book series.

The Dark Knight Rises

Here’s a report on the upcoming New York City shooting.

Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance

Here’s a video clip of the directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor, discussing how they didn’t really do much research on the comic book version of the film’s villain, Blackout.

Beetlejuice 2

It looks like a sequel to the Tim Burton classic is finally moving forward, and it will be a true continuation of the story with Michael Keaton returning as the titular “ghost with the most.”

Independence Day 2 & 3

Yep, Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich are close to completing not one, but two screenplays that will continue the story of the monument-destroying aliens from the original ID4. They also really hope to get Will Smith to return and say, “Welcome back to Earff!”

Superman: The Man of Steel

Michael Shannon dishes some info on the fight scenes between Zod and Superman.

SHIRTLESS HOBO SUPERMAN SAVES THE DAY

Zack Snyder’s Superman reboot, The Man of Steel, isn’t due out for two years, but it’s been filming for months. Over that time, the Internet has been besieged by countless set pics from the film showing British actor Henry Cavill in various states of dress, ranging from full Superman gear to a deshevilled, bearded hobo look. Well today, the bearded bum Superman is back, and he looks to be saving some workers from certain doom by herding them onto a helicopter. The whole thing takes place on a green screen, so I’m sure when Snyder gets to the editing room, he’s going to have a hell of time restraining himself from sticking in all sorts of gaudy CGI chaos like fire, explosions, dragons, Nazi robots with jet-packs, scantily-clad babes riding unicorns, and steampunk vampires being dropped from Pterodactyl claws like bombs.

Anyway, here’s the latest gallery of set pics from The Man of Steel:

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RUSSELL CROWE’S JOR-EL IS GOING TO PUNCH PEOPLE

Because Russell Crowe can’t be in any movies where he doesn’t get to hit someone, it looks like his version of Jor-El won’t be a peace-loving, rational scientist, but a badass Kryptionian ass-kicker looking to stomp a mud-hole in General Zod before Krypton’s destruction. Here are some tweets that Crowe sent out on his Twitter account regarding the Jor-El ass-kickery in Zack Snyder’s Superman: The Man of Steel.

15km bike ride,umpteen hours fighting Michael Shannon. (General Zod) He’s very hard to put down.

@alanthomasdoyle Stay around for the Saturday. That really is the only day I can guarantee you any time . I’m trying to save a planet here.

@alanthomasdoyle Alas, I’m no superhero.Just related to one.

So far, Man of Steel has a chiseled British guy playing Superman in a knobby, rubbery costume; a red-headed Lois Lane played by an actress ten years older than the actor playing Superman; a black Perry White (Laurence Fishburne);  a yet-to-be-revealed CGI costume for General Zod; and now a Jor-El that gets into fisticuffs. Based on this information, I’m pretty sure Snyder is going to cast an Asian to play a Jimmy Olsen who is secretly a ninja that hides throwing stars in his camera.

OH LOOK, IT’S RUSSELL CROWE AS JOR-EL

Well, hmmm…oh boy. Here we have our first look at Russell Crowe decked out in a rather interesting take on Jor-El’s Kryptonian scientist garb. It’s obvious from the previously leaked photos of Superman’s costume that Zack Snyder’s production team is going for a regal,  retro-1930’s sci-fi design aesthetic for the costumes. Whether that is going to fly with modern audiences used to sleek, CGI suits of armor ala Iron Man remains to be seen, but my initial reaction is that Crowe looks like a jackass in a rubbery, bulky costume that wouldn’t look out of place on some random bad guy standing behind Rip Torn in The Beastmaster.

ZACK SNYDER LIES TO MICHAEL SHANNON; ZOD’S COSTUME WILL BE CGI

Because, you know, that worked out so well for this guy.

Basically what happened here is that Michael Shannon asked Snyder point-blank if he was going to have to wear a silly motion-capture suit, and Snyder lied to his face. Shannon spilled the details in a Moviefone interview:

“Yeah, it’s one of the most humiliating garments that exists in the known universe, yes. It’s very tight. It has a variety of different colors and shapes on it and it makes you feel like you’re the court jester. And it’s funny because when I met with Zack we were talking about it before it started and he mentioned that there was going to be a lot of CGI, or whatever. I said, ‘Just don’t make me wear one of those silly suits.’

He said, ‘Oh, yeah, don’t worry, I know exactly what you’re talking about.’

I was like, ‘It’s going to be really hard for me to be intimidating if I have to wear one of those silly suits.’ He said, ‘I totally understand.’

Then I showed up and he’s like, ‘Dude, I swear to God, it’s going to be so bad ass when we’re done. Trust me, it’s going to be wicked.’ And, you know, people understand and you get used to it. The first day, you feel like you’re getting rushed by a fraternity… and then it wears off the next day. Because I’m not the only one wearing one – there are other people wearing them, too.”

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