After last week’s mad onslaught of trailers, it has been a quieter week in the movie news world, with a much lighter selection of stuff to consume. However, there has been plenty to get excited about, from a pair of very solid teaser trailers to our first glimpse of Gal Gadot and, surprisingly, Chris Pine in the highly anticipated sequel to Wonder Woman.
Elsewhere, Gadot has landed herself another prime leading role and there’s an unlikely remake in the pipeline for a campy 90s horror movie about giant spiders. That might be one to turn away from if you can’t stand things with eight legs.
Here’s your movie news round-up…
Tim Burton takes flight for Dumbo teaser
First up, the constantly churning machine of Disney remakes has landed upon Dumbo, with Hollywood oddball director Tim Burton assigned to create the new take on the flying elephant. Burton has assembled an impressive cast, with Colin Farrell, Eva Green and Danny DeVito among the big names who have signed up to appear, with Michael Keaton also set to pop up in his latest villainous turn. This week’s teaser trailer gave us our first chance to have a look at the main attraction – the live action take on the elephant himself.
It’s a fun teaser that allows us to see the decidedly Burtonesque take on the circus world, which seems to fit the director like a glove. The CGI is typically brilliant, as we have come to expect with these live action Disney movies, and there’s every indication that this will be another home run for the studio, which hasn’t really put a foot wrong with new adaptations of its classics. Dumbo is due to arrive in UK cinemas in March 2019.
Jenkins and Gadot tease Wonder Woman 1984
There’s still the best part of 18 months until the Wonder Woman sequel will make its way into cinemas all over the world, but the marketing got moving this week, with Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot both sharing stills from the film on their social media accounts. Jenkins caused the biggest stir when she shared a picture of Chris Pine as Steve Trevor, who seems to be back despite the fact that the character died in the first film. Even beyond that, the first movie had a First World War setting whereas, based on this week’s tweets, this movie is set to be called Wonder Woman 1984, hinting at a time jump in excess of 60 years.
Gadot’s pictures were more standard shots of her character, with Pine’s appearance sparking most of the discussion. I’m actually left somewhat concerned by this, given the fact that 90% of popular culture at the moment seems to be 1980s nostalgia. With that in mind, I don’t see why the Wonder Woman movies have to go that way. Jenkins, however, produced a terrific film last time around and I hope she pull off the same trick again. Wonder Woman 1984 is due to be released in November 2019.
McGregor set to lead The Shining sequel
It’s weird to even think that there’s a sequel to The Shining, but there is and it’s due for a film adaptation in the immediate future. The man making Doctor Sleep is horror maestro Mike Flanagan, who showed his King prowess last year at the helm of the fantastic Gerald’s Game. This week, Variety revealed that Ewan McGregor is set to take the lead in the movie, playing the iconic role of Danny Torrance. The story focuses around the connection Torrance forms with a young girl in a hospice, who is being targeted by a sinister group.
There’s no surprise that, given the success of It last year, any King-related IP on the books is being fired straight into production. McGregor is an odd choice for this role, but he’ll give the project a shot of A-list star power. Anyone playing this part would seem a little weird, so they may as well use the casting to get themselves a multiplex push. There’s no word yet on a release date for Doctor Sleep, though we’ll likely be seeing it sooner rather than later.
The Nun is revealed in terrifying teaser
The Conjuring universe has been steadily expanding, under the careful stewardship of genre vet James Wan. Next up is The Nun, directed by The Hallow‘s Corin Hardy and focusing on the malevolent woman featured in The Conjuring 2. This week, we got our first look at the film in the shape of a very creepy teaser trailer that features a genuinely excellent jump scare. The movie will follow a Vatican team set to investigate a suicide at a Romanian abbey.
This is a very good trailer that hints at an even darker movie than previous Conjuring stories. That jump scare alone is enough to make me considerably more excited for the film than I already was. With the exception of Annabelle, this is a franchise that has shown real consistency and it seems to be going from strength to strength. The Nun is set for release in September 2018.
Gal Gadot to join The Rock for Red Notice
She’s currently busy single-handedly keeping the DC Universe above water, but Gal Gadot apparently has time for other things as well. This week, Deadline reported that Gadot has signed on to star alongside Dwayne Johnson in Rawson Marshall Thurber‘s Red Notice, which is being described as a globe-trotting action comedy with heist elements. Gadot’s character will be one of the three leads – the third is yet to be cast – and she will play a mysterious figure in the world of art. Thurber apparently flew all the way to London just for a day in order to meet with Gadot for the role.
This sounds like a really fun project and the prospect of seeing Johnson and Gadot in a movie together is a mouth-watering one. It’s another massive project for Gadot and, if it turns out to be as good as its cast list, it’s worth betting on as a major box office success story. The film is a little way off, though, with shooting set to take place in April 2019 ahead of a June 2020 global release.
James Wan to produce Arachnophobia remake
If you were to put together a list of horror films that would produce a fruitful remake, I doubt that 1990’s Arachnophobia would be near the top of that list. The original film features a breed of South American spider crossing the border into the USA and becoming a terrifying killer once it breeds and becomes a dangerous hybrid. According to Deadline, the remake is set to be produced by James Wan – who will not direct – and the Amblin studio, which suggests we might be looking at something in the PG-13 family horror area.
It’s tough to see why Arachnophobia has been chosen for the remake treatment as it’s not a property that screams out for a second go round. The original film is not remembered particularly fondly and there’s not much appetite to see the story told again. With that said, though, Wan has marshalled the Conjuring franchise to great success and so could well pull off the same trick with his involvement in this film. Hopefully there will be more announcements soon regarding this one.
Francis Lawrence to take on Hogan/Gawker trial
He split critics and audiences with Red Sparrow this year and now Francis Lawrence is lining up a sensational true story for his next project. The Hollywood Reporter has revealed Lawrence will direct one of two major movies currently being developed based around the trial involving WWE legend Hulk Hogan that led to the downfall of gossip site Gawker. Lawrence’s take will be written by The Big Short scribe Charles Randolph based on Ryan Holiday’s book Conspiracy: Peter Thiel, Hulk Hogan, Gawker, and the Anatomy of Intrigue.
This is an interesting project, particularly as someone is going to have to play Hulk Hogan, which is a very intriguing casting process for them to carry out. The story of the trial is a scandalous and compelling one that was hugely entertaining as a news story and will presumably have the same intrigue in feature form. Attention now turns to which of the competing projects will get into cinemas first. The other might have a serious struggle ahead.
Are you intrigued by Tim Burton’s take on Dumbo or Corin Hardy’s The Nun? What are your thoughts on the return of Steve Trevor in Wonder Woman 1984? Let me know in the comments section and come back next Sunday for another news round-up.