Monday movie news

The movie side of the show biz world might not have anything of the magnitude of the big news from Team Coco to talk about today, but there’s plenty of interesting borderline-almost-news to mention in an ironic way…

* I don’t know whether there’s some sort of game of managing expectations going on or if interest really is limited to younger males and no one else, but I’m starting to hear rumblings that “Kick-Ass” is not expected to kick ass do hugely well at the box office this Friday. If so, then Matthew Vaughn has got to be one of the least lucky talented mainstream directors ever after generating so much excitement with his film, at least in the fanboy realms.

Kick-Ass

My main rumbling comes via this Playlist piece which alleges that nothing has been done to expand the interest in the film beyond those who’ve never heard of the comic book.  Literally speaking, that’s not true because I’d never heard of the comic book before hearing about Vaughn’s film of it, though I am certainly a member of the Geek American community. The main thrust of the piece itself is actually on the possibly stronger hopes for “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” which, as a commenter offers, does seem to have more cross-gender appeal. It also has a well known star and the comic genius Edgar Wright going for it. We’ll see.

In any case, Vaughn appears to be doing what all prudent directors do before their next big film comes out, lining up the next gig just in case the current film really does tank. This story is a glorified rumor, but it does look possible that Vaughn’s next gig might involve a gangster/science fiction vampire comic book written by, of all people, controversial English talk show host and film geek, Jonathan Ross who is leaving the BBC because of a scandal caused, I kid you not, by tasteless prank phone calls. Here, he’d get a promotion. In any case, I’ll always remember him for “The Incredibly Strange Film Show.”

* Never fear, however, “Iron Man 2” will be here in 26 days. Of course it’ll do ridiculously well, but I remember some naysayers just before the first movie came out. Seems all those good reviews were a bit worrisome and even smart people like Michael Phillips and A.O. Scott, if memory serves, were worried the movie was a little too good to make monster bucks.

Myrna Loy* The biggest news in my personal movie world is word via the Los Angeles Times of the resurrection of the statue that classic-era superstar Myrna Loy (“The Thin Man,” “The Best Years of Our Lives”) posed for when she was just a young student and which graced the front of my alma mater for decades. As the News Editor of the Venice High Oarsman (“Rowing, Not Drifting”) back in the pre-pre-pre-pre MySpace era, I was on the Myrna-vandalism beat. This gladdens my heart. A picture, however, would have been nice. Maybe I’ll get to work on that a bit later.

* If you were already fantasizing about someday buying Ryan Reynolds’ Green Lantern get-up via E-bay, you’re out of luck unless you were playing on buying some software. It’s going to be a CGI suit.

* Sharon Waxman thinks the Weinstein brothers may be in the lead to buy back their old company.

* Merrick at AICN has some details on the new Jack Ryan non-novel-based reboot or prequel or whatever it is. It’s plot, we’re told, will involve terrorists and a plan to destroy the economy. Cyber-terrorism? If so, they’ll have their work cut out for them making it cinematic. I guess they’ll just wind up nuking another American city half-way through the film and then expect us to buy a happy ending when it’s all over.

* I thought for sure the story/rumor/probable b.s. about Quentin Tarantino reviving Lindsay Lohan’s career would turn out to be today’s weirdest item. Then I came across the one about what we’re told is Chris Rock‘s latest writing gig. The first weird bit is that he’s purportedly taking over a script last worked on by David Mamet. Now, I’m a pretty big Rock fan — I even kinda sorta liked “Head of State” — but I’m also a Mamet fan, and let’s just say that I don’t often mention them in the same breath.

It gets weirder still because the movie in question is a remake of Akira Kurosawa’s classic, “High and Low,” which was originally going to be directed by Martin Scorsese but is now going in a very different and less promising directorial direction with Mike Nichols. Kurosawa and Chris Rock, also not people I would ordinarily put together. As Beaks points out, however, this whole business of making ridiculous comparisons could be avoiding by simply going back to the original source material of “High and Low,” Ed McBain’s police procedural/business thriller, “King’s Ransom.” It’s similar but also very different than the Kurosawa movie in a way that tells you something about the differences between the Japanese and American cultures, and in some respects more relevant now than it’s been in some time.

I still can’t quite imagine Rock writing it, but you never know, I guess. Also, I give him credit for having interesting taste, assuming there’s a word of truth in any of this.

Liam Neeson in * The weekend box office “actuals” are finally in after the weekend confusion about which film came out on top. “Clash of the Titans” earned $26.6 miillion while “Date Night” was over-estimated by nearly $2 million and got a still very healthy $25.2 million.

* I don’t think there’s any way you can make me care about who’s writing the He-Man movie.

* If you’re in the mood for some real critical inside baseball and controversy. Glenn Kenny picks another fight, this time over age and ethics in this post and the ensuing comments. Personally, I like it better when Kenny writes about movies. I get enough meta at the DailyKos diaries. On the other hand, the Gang of Four clip is way cool.

  

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