By Michael Lynderey
May 24, 2010
Don't worry. The regular dose of sequel news you've been accustomed to is certainly coming, right there on the second page. In concocting this page, however, I was torn between:
1. Covering random if just slightly interesting film newsbits of the past two weeks.
2. Replacing roughly half the column with a series of particularly unclever "Why did the chicken cross the road?" jokes.
I chose the newsbits, though I'm saving the chicken joke collection for later. That was especially true because my attention, and space, were required for yet another of a seemingly endless collection of rants about current film trends that I find particularly innutritious. You see, the dastardly creature known only as 3D has really been spreading its pus-soaked tentacles as of late, grabbing in lethal chokehold 2D film after unsuspecting 2D film, and forcing them to convert to its format, or die! (This also more or less happened during the Spanish Inquisition, and it didn't quite work out so well back then, either). Aside from the constant announcements of new titles that appear to have been envisioned in 3D from conception - Paul W. S. Anderson's The Three Musketeers, or the upcoming Judge Dredd remake - we're also seeing innocent, helpless, nice little movies initially planned as 2D being captured and turned over to the dark side: Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Wes Craven's horror flick My Soul to Take are getting the conversion treatment, as is Steven Soderbergh's next, Contagion. No film is safe.
Speaking of unpleasant trends, remember those spoofs that used to haunt our dreams, and worse - our movie theaters - just a few years back? Experts assured us we'd seen the last of them with Disaster Movie, or, certainly, with Dance Flick. Scientists everywhere agreed we'd be safe, at least for a few more years - long enough for us to settle back, relax, and enjoy the day-to-day existence of a world in which cinema was taken seriously enough to avoid being subjected to unfunny jokes about itself. Well, my friends, that time has now been cut short.
Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer - makers of not only the aforementioned Disaster Movie, but also Meet the Spartans, Epic Movie, and yes, even Date Movie - will collaborate once more, this time on a spoof of that vampire genre that's apparently so beloved by all of us right now. Not much else has been announced, except for the first and only thing you need to know about this as-of-yet-untitled excursion into nosferatic parody: it already has a release date - August 18, 2010 - though filming has yet to begin. I know we ought to keep an open mind, but c'mon...
In other news, New Line seems apt to turn TV stalwart MacGyver into a film version - having been inspired, I suppose, by the runaway success of MacGruber at the box office this weekend. Speaking of adopting oldies, that looks to be a growing trend - Gidget, that old Sally Field thing about shenanigans on the Malibu surf, is now in development for a cinematic comeback, while Disney is gearing up a live-action version of Cinderella, and Michelle Williams and Naomi Watts have both been lined up to play Marilyn Monroe (no, not in the same film, unfortunately).
Going back even further, old books are getting in on the action, too, with a new version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea being developed not only by Fox, but Disney, too, with David Fincher lined up to direct the latter one (and Fincher's a busy guy; aside from Leagues, he's been attached to helm new versions of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Reincarnation of Peter Proud, Heavy Metal, and Mary Poppins - or at the very least, he's lined up to remake at least three of these four). But not all news is quite as mundane - Evan Rachel Wood and Marilyn Manson will be teaming up to star in the endearingly-named Splatter Sisters, a horror-road trip-slasher film, and one that's apparently going to be directed by indie legend David Gordon Green, to boot! Hey, that's news I like, especially considering the alternatives.