Renaissance News Vol. 2 Issue 23

It’s late! It’s late! No time for small talk! There’s news to be had!

  • Ving Rhames has joined Tom Cruise in returning for Mission: Impossible IV. The film is set to be Brad Bird’s (The Incredibles) first live-action directorial effort.
  • Robin Wright and Stelan Skarsgard are in talks to join Daniel Craig in David Fincher’s adaptation of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.
  • There is a new trailer for Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader attached to the Diary of a Wimpy Kid DVD/Blu Ray.
  • Amy Adams, Kristen Stewart, and Viggo Mortensen will star in an adaptation of Jack Keroac’s classic travel memoir On the Road.
  • Monster’s Inc 2 has an official release date. Mike and Sully will return November 2, 2012. Pixar’s project, long-rumored to be on the chopping blocki, newt, has been canceled.
  • Rumor is that Quentin Tarrantino is circling directing and co-writing a new version of The Shadow.
  • Filming for the Spider-Man reboot and Men in Black III will get underway before the end of the year.
  • Liam Neeson has been attached to Stephen Spielberg’s biopic of Lincoln since the mid 1990’s. Neeson has announced he’s leaving the project (has anyone ever committed to a project for longer that never happened?) and if Spielberg ever does get around to making the film, he’ll need a new Abe.
  • Robert Rodriguez (Sin City) is unofficially attached to direct the X-Men spinoff movie, Deadpool.
  • Guillermo del Toro, who is already attached to direct Haunted Mansion (don’t get me started again) and At the Mountains of Madness, debuted another project at Comicon called El Guerrero and featured a picture of a conquistador but no further details were offered.
  • Warner Bros. has announced plans to return their Looney Tunes characters both to the big screen as pre-film shorts and to the Cartoon Network in a new series.
  • Who’s replacing Ellen DeGeneres on American Idol? Jennifer Lopez. There are no words.
  • Warner Bros. is so confident in Green Lantern’s success next summer that they’re planning on shooting two sequels back to back with the first to hit theatres in 2013. Let’s hope that works out better than it did for the Matrix and Pirates franchises.
  • DVD Release Dates
    Babies, September 28th
    Family Guy: It’s a Trap, December 21st
    Get Him to the Greek, September 28th
    Hell’s Kitchen: The Complete Fourth Season, November 9th
    Marmaduke, August 31st
    Nightmare on Elm Street, October 5th
    Prince of Persia The Sands of Time, September 14th
    V: The Complete First Season, November 2nd
  • Blu Ray Release Dates
    Apocalypse Now, October 19th
    Babies, September 28th
    Family Guy: It’s a Trap, December 21st
    Get Him to the Greek, September 28th
    Marmaduke, August 31st
    Nightmare on Elm Street, October 5th
    Prince of Persia The Sands of Time, September 14th
    Robocop Trilogy, October 5th
    Rocky Horror Picture Show, October 19th
    Tremors, November 9th
    V: The Complete First Season, November 2nd
  • Box Office
    1. Inception $27.5 million
    2. Dinner for Schmucks, $23.5 million
    3. Salt, $19.5 million
    4. Despicable Me, $15.5 million
    5. Charlie St. Cloud, $12.4 million
  • Billboard Top Albums
    1. Nightmare by Avenged Sevenfold
    2. Recovery by Eminem
    3. Teflon Don by Rick Ross
    4. My World 2.0 by Justin Bieber
    5. Thank Me Later by Drake
  • Video Game Bestsellers
    1. Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty, PC
    2. Samurai Heroes, PS3
    3. Project Diva 2nd, PSP
    4. Wii Sports, Wii
    5. Super Mario Galaxy 2, Wii
  • New York Times Hardcover Fiction Bestsellers
    1. The Rembrandt Affair by Daniel Silva
    2. The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson
    3. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
    4. Fly Away Home by Jennifer Weiner
    5. Private by James Patterson

Killing Time – August 6, 2010

As I mentioned in my last Tweet (there was a time when I would have felt dumb…er writing that clause), this was going to be a busy week and there’s been no time for updates and I know the RN is delayed. It will be done! This week I’ve been a bit of a road warrior and killing time inbetween flights. With what?
Book: still working on The Passage by Justin Cronin
Music: Arcade Fire and Snow Patrol
Video Game: Red Dead Redemption
DVD/Blu Ray: Kick-Ass on BD (would probably bump it up to a 8.0 on second viewing)
Comics: Green Lantern Sinestro Corps War by Geoff Johns

Top 5: Movie Trailers

A perfect trailer is many things. Essentially, it’s a short film. It needs to do a few things. It obviously has to sell the movie to you. It should NOT ruin the plot by telling you everything that will happen in the movie. It has to give you a taste of visual effects, powerful moments, enduring lines, etc. It should NOT include every one of those things that the movie has (however if your movie has about 2.5 minutes of memmorable moments, your movie is in trouble already). A truly amazing trailer will live on after the movie as something you revisit to remind you of the film. The five trailers I’ve selected as the best of all-time are all recent, but that’s because making a great trailer is a recent art. If you’ve seen trailers from the 80’s and before you’ll wonder how people ever got to the movies. Embedding video into the page is rough from my laptop, so I’ll provide links to http://www.movies-list.com/ (fantastic site that offers free trailer downloads and is responsible for my ipod being full of them).

1. The Dark Knight Trailer #2 (2008)
www.movie-list.com/trailers.php?id=darkknight
I was worried this gave too much away when I saw it the first time, but after the movie, you see what a masterpiece of misdirection this is. It gives you jaw dropping moments, pressages a performance in Heath Ledger’s Joker that will live on as long as there will be movies, and is set to Hans Zimmer’s adrenaline pumping score. The second trailer for Inception followed much the same formula to almost the same effect, but this is the best and most played video clip on my ipod.

2. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers Trailer #2 (2002)
http://www.movie-list.com/trailers.php?id=lordoftheringstrilogy
Returning us to the world of Middle-Earth after a year off, the trailer brilliantly reminds us of the status of the quest and highlights the increasing peril by showcasing the Battle of Helm’s Deep set to a remix of Clint Mansell’s theme to Requeim for a Dream that is the best use of music in a trailer I’ve ever experienced.

3. Road to Perdition Trailer (2002) http://www.roadtoperdition.com/trailer/RoadtoPerdition_qt_h.html
This trailer does a perfect job of letting the audience know the story and showcasing the two stars of Sam Mendes’ brilliant film: the actors and the cinematography. One of the most beautiful films ever shot, the trailer shows you a glimpse of what awaits you while some of the best actors of any generation deliver some of the most memorable lines of the film.

4. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Trailer (2004)
http://www.movie-list.com/trailers.php?id=harrypotter3
From the very instant it begins with Professor Snape slapping windows shut as he urges us to turn to page 394, we get sucked back into the world of Hogwarts. The trailer was our first glimpse of Michael Gambon as Dumbledore after the death of Richard Harris and showcased the dark tone and beautiful imagery that Alfonso Cuaron would bring to what is still the best of the Potter movies. Add in John Williams’ last score on the series (perhaps his last masterpiece) and you have magic (pardon the pun).

5. 300 Trailer #2 (2007)
http://www.movie-list.com/trailers.php?id=300
Pure visual candy from open to close. Whether you knew about the graphic novel or not, by the time the trailer ended the trailer had left an indelible impression on you (for good or ill, I’m not unaware Zack Snyder has his haters). 300 looks like no movie ever made and the trailer whacked you between the eyes with a visual feast.

Very very hard to narrow this to only five. If I had to include a few more, we’d have had Saving Private Ryan, Casino Royale, Star Wars Episode I (seriously, do you remember how you felt when you saw Darth Maul’s double lightsaber ignite?), Inception, and Tropic Thunder.

Killing TIme – July 30, 2010

How have you been slaying Father Time’s offspring this week? In our ongoing effort to involve the RN community (cough desparate cry for attention cough), check out how we’ve been wasting time (why am I writing in the collective?) and add your own!
Book: The Passage by Justin Cronin
Music: Podcasts this week, listenend to a slew of Murmur.com’s podcast. Good stuff.
Video Game: Limbo
DVD/Blu Ray: Amazing Race Asia Season Three, Serenity & Quantum of Solace on Blu Ray
Comics: Captain America Omnibus Vol. 1 by Ed Brubaker

Renaisance News Vol. 2, Issue 22

Change is blowing in the home offices of the RN here in overly sunny Southern California. Change has blown so hard the last week that it has knocked me clean off my production schedule, and this issue is a day late for which I apologize. We will probably be on Thursday next week as well, but I shall continue to brave the darkest corners of geekdom to bring you your bits of tid. Big week with news pouring forth from the San Diego Comicon, so let’s get to it.

  • Your new Hulk is Mark Ruffalo (Zodiac)! Of course, had you read the last issue, you already knew that, but director Joss Whedon unveiled the official Avengers cast at Comicon, introducing Ruffalo who will be replacing Edward Norton. Also announced was Jeremy Renner (Hurt Locker) as archer Hawkeye.
  • The sinking ship that is American Idol continues to plunge further into obscurity. Ellen DeGeneres has announced she is leaving the show after only one season. Simon Cowell has already departed for his new show, X-Factor, and that leaves us with Randy Jackson and She-Who-Will-Not-Be-Named (whose contract has yet to be renewed). No word on possible replacements.
  • So…ok. Guillermo del Toro left The Hobbit. I’m still coming to terms with that. Is he going to do his Frankenstein next? Is he going to do his adaptation of HP Lovecraft’s At The Mountains of Madness? Well yes and it looks like James Cameron will produce, but that’s not what he’s doing first. First he’s REBOOTING the Disney’s Haunted Mansion movie. I love the ride; do not get me wrong; however, this is like Monet painting street signs. Sigh.
  • The SyFy Channel is exploring doing an online Battlestar Galactica series that would focus on a young William Adama during the First Cylon War.
  • Linda Hamilton is joing the cast of Chuck for its upcoming fourth season.
  • Does Total Recall require a remake? No, but they’re making one and Len Wiseman is directing it. He’s also going forward with Underworld 4, which will be a sequel to Underworld 2 with Kate Beckinsale and filmed in a format I no longer report on because I’m so sick of it (it may or may not be 3D).
  • Lost co-creator Damon Lindeloff is doing rewrites on the script for Ridley Scott’s Alien prequel.
  • Steve Carrell will produce and star in a comedy called Raised by Wolfs….which should speak for itself.
  • Edi Gathegi (Twilight) has joined the cast of X-Men: First Class as the mutant Darwin.
  • Officially announced, but reported here weeks ago (I can’t help but brag when we’re right), Daniel Craig has signed on to play the lead in all three adaptations of Stieg Larssons Milennium Series.
  • Go online and watch the trailer for Zack Snyder’s Sucker Punch. Do it now. Have you done it? I KNOW, RIGHT???
  • Saw 3D (aka Saw VII) will be the last in the horror series.
  • Brad Pitt has signed on to star in the Marc Forster directed adaptation of World War Z, the coolest zombie book ever written. Go read it now. NOW. I’m impatient, sorry, but zombies won’t wait.
  • DVD Release Dates:
    CSI: Miami: The Complete Eighth Season, October 12th
    Goonies 25th Anniversary Ed, November 2nd
    Killers, September 7th
    The Larry Sanders Show: Complete Second Season, November 2nd
    The League: Complete First Season, September 14th
    Lost Boys: The Thirst, October 26th
    Medium: The Complete Sixth Season, October 5th
    Pee Wee’s Playhouse Complete Collection, October 19th
    Robin Hood, September 21st
  • Blu Ray Release Dates:
    Ali, August 3rd
    Carrie, September 14th
    The Deer Hunter, August 10th
  • Goonies 25th Anniversary Ed., November 2nd
    Killers, September 7th
    The League: The Complete First Season, September 14th
    Lost Boys: The Thirst, October 26th
    Magnificent Seven, August 10th
    Misery, September 14th
    Robin Hood, September 21st
    The Silence of the Lambs, September 14th
    Species, September 14th

  • Box Office
    1. Inception, $42.7 million
    2. Salt, $36.0 million
    3. Despicable Me, $23.7 million
    4. The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, $9.7 million
    5. Toy Story 3, $8.9
  • Billboard Top Albums
    1. Recovery by Eminem
    2. Teflon Don by Rick Ross
    3. 100 Miles from Memphis by Sheryl Crow
    4. Thank Me Later by Drake
    5. Kidz Bop 18 by Kidz Bop Kidz (what…..IS this?)
  • Video Games Bestsellers
    1. NCAA Football 11, XBOX 360
    2. NCAA Football 11, PS3
    3. Fire Emblem, DS
    4. Dragon Quest Monsters: Battle Road Victory, Wii
    5. Wii Sports, Wii
  • New York Times Hardcover Fiction Bestsellers
    1. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson
    2. Fly Away Home by Jennifer Weiner
    3. The Secret by Nora Roberts
    4. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
    5. Private by James Patterson

Movie Reviews, Trailers, Polls, Lists, and More!!!

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