Some days, there are bits and bobs of news that don’t have quite enough meat on the bone for a full article. Still, they’re cool tidbits worth getting some love. We round them up for you in our Quick Hits column.
First Trailer For ‘The Stand’ Limited Series Unveiled At New York Comic Con
One of the most-anticipated Stephen King adaptations is the upcoming limited series The Stand for CBS All Access. Created by The New Mutants‘ Josh Boone, it has an all-star cast including James Marsden, Whoopi Goldberg, Jovan Adepo, Amber Heard, Katherine McNamara, Brad William Henke, Henry Zaga, Nat Wolff and more. The Stand tells the story of a man-made plague wiping out most of the people on Earth. As America struggles to rebuild itself, a demonic messiah of many faces who calls himself Randall Flagg emerges, finding the dispossessed and twisted, building them into an army to rule over all. A small group of survivors led by the wise Mother Abigail realize they must stop him and an epic battle of good vs. evil erupts. The first trailer for the limited series dropped today at New York Comic Con and it has us hyped.
Tyra Banks Confirms ‘Coyote Ugly’ Sequel Is In The Works
Break out the crop tops and cowboy boots, a Coyote Ugly sequel is on the way. Supermodel, producer and host Tyra Banks has previously hinted that she’d love to return to the world of the 2000 movie, and now it’s official. In an interview on The Kelly Clarkson Show, Banks said it’s hopefully coming back – but whether in the form of a sequel movie or spinoff series, she can’t say. “I literally was supposed to be on a conference call today about bringing Coyote Ugly back,” she revealed to Clarkson. “We were supposed to be on a call today, and I’m talking to you and I can’t talk to them…. Yes, we are talking about trying to do Coyote Ugly 2 or a series. As far as whether or not she can still do the dance moves, Banks feels she still has it. “I feel like I do have the dance moves, as long as no one choreographs me and tells me exactly how to dance,” she said, before joking that she’ll ask her fellow Dancing With the Stars colleague Derek Hough to choreograph something for her. The original movie made $114 million worldwide on a $45 million budget.
‘Green Lantern’ Series Gets The Greenlight – But There’s A Catch
Good news for DC fans: HBO Max has announced a Green Lantern series spearheaded by Seth Grahame-Smith and Mark Guggenheim, with Grahame-Smith serving a showrunner. However, there’s a catch: It won’t feature the most popular Green Lantern iterations of Hal Jordan and John Stewart, who are ostensibly being saved for movies down the road. Yet it will include other favorite iterations like Jessica Cruz, Guy Gardner, Simon Baz and Alan Scott. It will also include Sinestro and Kilowog and introduce newcomers to the Green Lantern Corps. The series got a 10-episode order, being just the latest spinoff DC property to be greenlit for HBO Max, which has gone all-in on building out its DC streaming universe in recent months.
Sandra Oh To Star In Sam Raimi-Produced Horror Film ‘Umma’
Grey’s Anatomy and Killing Eve star Sandra Oh is set to star in her first horror film. Sony Pictures’ Stage 6 Films just snapped up the rights to Umma, the scripted feature film debut of documentary filmmaker Iris K. Shim. What’s more exciting is that Sam Raimi is on board as producer and André Øvredal as EP, along with a number of other producers. Umma, which is Korean for “mother,” tells the story of Amanda (Oh) and her daughter, who live a quiet life on a rural farm in America. However, when the remains of Amanda’s estranged mother arrive from Korea, Amanda becomes possessed by the fear she’s turning into her own mother. We don’t know much more than that but just knowing Sandra Oh is on board is more than enough for us to be interested.
A ‘Space Mountain’ Movie In Development By Disney
Adding to next year’s Jungle Cruise and following the relatively recent news of a Haunted Mansion reboot on the way, Disney is reportedly working on a Space Mountain movie from Obi-Wan Kenobi writer Joby Harold. Harold, who has had a short writing career resume of King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Zack Snyder Netflix movie Army of the Dead, an untitled future Transformers movie and the upcoming Obi-Wan Kenobi series for Disney+, will also produce alongside his wife and business partner Tory Tunnell. Not much is known about the plot of the movie based on the classic Disney World ride, but it’s being described as a family adventure with the ride merely serving as inspiration. Considering the ride has no iconic scenes or characters, it gives Harold room to create a wholly original story. We’re curious to see what that story is.
Dwayne Johnson Is Now The Most-Followed American Man On Instagram
This week, the internet smelled what The Rock was cooking: Dwayne Johnson has now surpassed 200 million people on Instagram, making him the most-followed man in America on IG. (Soccer star Ronaldo is the most-followed man in the world at 238 million followers, while Ariana Grande is the most-followed woman and American celebrity at 203 million.) He posted a video to commemorate the milestone, thanking his fans while urging them to “speak your truth” (the milestone was crossed shortly after Johnson spoke out and endorsed a presidential candidate in Joe Biden for the first time in his career). Check it out:
What a dude.
Viola Davis Is Getting Absolutely Ripped For ‘The Woman King’
Viola Davis is soon to tackle the role of a lifetime in The Woman King, where she’ll play Nanisca, the general of an all-female military unit in Africa who fought the French and other neighboring tribes that threatened to enslave them and destroy their culture. It’s based on the real-life Dahomey Amazons, a female group of fighters in Dahomey, Africa, who fought in the 18th century. To prepare for the role as general, Davis is getting in the best shape of her life. She shared her progress photos and damn, girl:
She is arms goals.
Bill Hader Joins ‘The Addams Family 2’ Voice Cast
MGM announced this week that the sequel to hit animated movie The Addams Family is coming on Halloween 2021. The Addams Family 2 in the middle of production, and a few more actors have been added to the voice cast, notably Bill Hader, who will be voicing an entirely new character named Cyrus. Meanwhile, Samaritan actor Javon “Wanna” Walton is replacing Finn Wolfhard as the voice of Pugsley Addams. They join a returning cast that includes Charlize Theron as Morticia Addams, Oscar Isaac as Gomez Addams, Chloë Grace Moretz as Wednesday Addams, Nick Kroll as Uncle Fester, Bette Midler as Grandma and Snoop Dogg as Cousin It. The production is also offering fans the chance to voice a new character in The Addams Family Voice Challenge, which runs from October 8th – November 4th.
First Trailer For David Fincher’s Black-And-White ‘Mank’ Is Released
Over on Netflix, David Fincher is going old, old school with Mank. The project is something of a passion project for Fincher, whose father, Jack, wrote the script in 2003. The 1930s-set film stars Gary Oldman as screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz, the co-writer of Orson Welles’ groundbreaking Citizen Kane. The story follows “Mank,” as he was called by friends and family, as he struggles with alcoholism and a race against time to finish the script for the movie that would change Hollywood forever. The stacked cast also includes Amanda Seyfried, Lily Collins, Charles Dance, Tom Pelphrey, Tuppence Middleton, Sam Troughton and Ferdinand Kinglsey. As it’s set in the 30s, Fincher shot it in black-and-white and even the first trailer is a throwback to the trailers of yesteryear:
Count me in.
Gemma Chan & Kiki Layne Join Olivia Wilde’s ‘Don’t Worry Darling’
For her sophomore directorial effort, Olivia Wilde is tackling New Line’s thriller Don’t Worry Darling. Already, she’s building herself quite the ensemble cast. It was reported this week that Gemma Chan (Crazy Rich Asians, Captain Marvel, Eternals) and Kiki Layne (If Beale Street Could Talk, The Old Guard) have signed onto a cast that already includes Harry Styles, Florence Pugh and Chris Pine. Wilde also has a role in her film. Not much is known about the plot, but the movie is set in an isolated, utopian community in the California desert in the 1950s. Wilde’s Booksmart co-writer Katie Silberman penned the script from a spec script by Carey and Shane Van Dyke. It must be a great premise, however: No less than 18 different studios and platforms put in a bid to win the project before New Line nabbed it.
A ‘Nightmare Before Christmas’ Benefit Concert Is Happening
For one night only, Tim Burton, Danny Elfman, and Disney Music Group are teaming up with Broadway star James Monroe Inglehart are teaming up for a Halloween benefit concert featuring the music of The Nightmare Before Christmas. Inglehart, who won a Tony for his turn as Genie in Broadway’s Aladdin, will present and sing, leading a stellar cast of Broadway stars Adrienne Warren (Tina: The Tina Turner Musical), Danny Burstein (Moulin Rouge!) Rob McClure (Beetlejuice), Rafael Casal (Blindspotting), Nik Walker (Ain’t Too Proud), Lesli Margherita (Matilda) and more to be announced. Using only clothes and props from around their homes, the cast will act out scenes from Burton’s 1993 classic movie with Elfman’s iconic soundtrack. The pay-per-view concert will benefit The Actors Fund and the Lymphoma Research Foundation with tickets available for just $4.99. It will stream live on The Actors Fund Vimeo channel on Saturday, October 31st at 7pm EST/4pm PST. Tickets are available here.
‘Free Guy’ Trailer Generates 55 Million Views In First 24 Hours
It may feel like movies and theaters are dead right now, but that’s not due to lack of interest on the part of moviegoers if the performance of Free Guy‘s most recent trailer is any indication. Disney reported the second trailer for the Ryan Reynolds action-comedy directed by Shawn Levy generated an eye-popping 55 million views in its first 24 hours, well up from the 40 million the first trailer for the movie earned in its first day. That’s more than Ready Player One (44.5 million), which Levy also directed, and Marvel’s Ant-Man and the Wasp (50 million). The Free Guy trailer boasted an impressive 12 million views on Instagram alone, this despite the onslaught of crazy news we’ve had in the past few weeks. The story of Free Guy follows Guy (Reynolds) a mild-mannered guy who discovers he’s an NPC in a violent video game and sets out to free himself and his world, and is being described as a “joyball” of a movie.
Aaron Sorkin Wants To Write A Sequel To ‘The Social Network’
A decade ago, writer Aaron Sorkin and director David Fincher collaborated to give the world The Social Network, based on the founding and launch of Facebook. It won three Oscars, one of which went to Sorkin for Best Adapted Screenplay. Now Sorkin says he would love to write a sequel, explaining he and producer Scott Rudin are on board. On MTV’s Happy.Sad.Confused podcast with Josh Horowitz, Sorkin said the last decade of us discovering how dangerous and insidious Facebook and social media can be inspired the desire to pen a sequel script. “I do want to see it. And Scott wants to see it,” said Sorkin. “People have been talking to me about it. What we’ve discovered is the dark side of Facebook.” However, Sorkin says, he’ll only do it if Fincher agrees to direct again. They made magic with the first movie so it makes sense he’d only want to do a sequel if he and Fincher can reteam on the project. I, for one, would like to see it happen. Imagine what they could do together knowing everything we know now.
‘Sister Act 3’ Is In The Works
After years of speculation, Whoopi Goldberg has confirmed it: Sister Act 3 is in the works. Speaking to James Corden on The Late Late Show, she said that they’re actively having discussions about a third movie. “For a long time, they kept saying no one wanted to see it. And then quite recently, it turns out, that that may not be true. People may want to see it,” she said. “So we’re working diligently to try to figure out how to get the gang together and come back.” Both Sister Act and Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit are ’90s comedy classics. Goldberg plays the girlfriend of a mobster who goes undercover and into witness protection as a nun in order to escape the Mafia. While she’s there, she transforms the struggling church into the talk of the town by leading the choir of nuns in an updated routine. Could a third Sister Act movie work so many years later? Hey, Eddie Murphy is doing Coming 2 America decades after the first, so anything is possible.
‘Game Of Thrones’ Spinoff Series Finds One Of Its Leading Men
After an extensive search, HBO’s Game of Thrones spinoff, House of the Dragon, has found its leading man – or at least one of them. The Outsider‘s Paddy Considine has been tapped to star as King Viserys Targaryen, a good man who just wants to do right by his grandfather, the Old King, Jaehaerys Targaryen, and his grandfather’s legacy. House of the Dragon is set 300 years before the events of Game of Thrones and according to that universe’s history, Viserys I’s reign was largely peaceful and prosperous, but the seeds of the civil war that would later erupt were planted while he ruled. Considine is a fantastic character actor who did great work as Claude Bolton in The Outsider, so we’re looking forward to seeing what he brings to the table.
Robert Downey Jr. Is Developing A Sherlock Holmes Cinematic Universe
Robert Downey Jr. and his wife and producing partner Susan Downey are apparently developing a whole Sherlock Holmes cinematic universe, not just a third movie. Said Susan Downey during a panel at Fast Company’s recent Innovation Festival, “Doing a one-off third movie, we could do, but we do think there’s opportunity to build it out more, to spin off some characters from the third movie,” noting there’s a lot happening in the realm of TV and streaming right now. Downey Jr. spoke of the lack of a universe quite like the one Sherlock Holmes’ world could offer, saying, “At this point, we really feel there’s not a mystery-verse built out anywhere, and Conan Doyle is the definitive voice in that arena to this day, so to me, why do a third movie if you’re not going to be able to spin off into some real gems of diversity, and other times and elements?” The Guy Ritchie-directed, Downey Jr.-led first two Sherlock Holmes films have made over a billion dollars at the box office. Sherlock Holmes 3 is currently scheduled for release next December, but with the comments above and the fact that the project hasn’t yet started filming makes one wonder if it will turn into a TV series instead.
James McAvoy Will Improv An Entire Movie With No Script
After various interviews and his masterful work in movies Split and Glass, it’s well-known by now that James McAvoy is a master chameleon and good with improv. But he’s set to take on potentially his most challenging role yet. He’s starring opposite Claire Foy in ErosSTX’s My Son, a remake of French thriller Mon Garçon. My Son will find McAvoy playing a father whose son goes missing, soon traveling to the town where his ex (Foy) lives to track his boy down. However, there’s a catch: Just like in the original French film, McAvoy will not be given a script and will improv the entire movie to truly capture a man who does not know what lies ahead of him or which way to turn. The cast and crew will be aware of the scenes, but McAvoy will be left to improv as each scene unfolds. “James will be doing the detective work of the film in real time, on camera, to create real tension for this thriller. We like to support bold and innovative storytelling like My Son, and Claire could not be a more spectacular or exciting choice for this film which is certain to thrill audiences,” said Adam Fogelson, chairman of the STXfilms Motion Picture Group. It’s a daunting challenge, but if any actor can pull it off, it’s McAvoy.
Dwayne Johnson Nerds Out Over The Cameras For ‘Red Notice’
Dwayne Johnson, Ryan Reynolds and Gal Gadot are currently busy filming Netflix’s action-thriller Red Notice. For the cinematography and technical nerds out there, Johnson recently geeked out on his Instagram about the techniques they’re using to film the movie, a combination of old, classic Hollywood lenses and leading digital technology. Check out his fascinating IG post:
My technical nerd heart is happy.
UCLA Report Says Tentpoles Lacking Diversity Are Set To Lose Big Money
More evidence that studio execs and producers need to get on the inclusion bandwagon: A new study from UCLA says big- and medium-sized Hollywood movies are on track to lose millions if they don’t have a diverse and inclusive cast and/or behind camera crew. Their latest diversity report has found that movies face a significant opening weekend box office loss if there is little racial, cultural, or gender diversity among the cast and crew, predicting a movie with a $159 million budget will lose $32.2 million, or 20% of its budget, in the first weekend, with a potential overall loss of $130 million, or 81% of its budget. For a mid-sized film of $78 million, the losses translate to $13.8 million (18%) in opening weekend box office and $55.2 million (71%) overall. The researchers conducting the UCLA-based Center for Scholars and Storytellers’ study based their analysis on 109 Hollywood films released between 2016 to 2019.