Iron Man and Captain America battle it out for superhero rights in the new Captain America: Civil War trailer. Whose side are you on?
Another year, another peak behind the curtain of the planet’s most beloved and most profitable mouse rights advocacy groups. The D23 Expo was always a promise of shock and awe, given Disney’s more recent acquisitions of Marvel and Star Wars. But even though we expected a lot, there was still more besides to surprise the sailor suits off us! Let’s revisit them shall we? Continue reading Check Out the 11 Best Bits of Disney Magic at the D23 Expo
It’s hard to believe that The Incredibles is over a decade old – a fact that has only really become prominent since Disney/Pixar announced that a sequel to the immensely popular superhero film was officially in the works.
A film that preceded Iron Man and the Marvel Cinematic Universe by four years, The Incredibles was Brad Bird‘s rousing call for the love that we can all feel for cinematic supers, as well as their potential versatility as a genre. So you can’t blame people for nearly leaping out of their Mr Incredible pyjamas we they found out Bird would be returning to pen the sequel script. Hopefully this won’t lead people to overlook Tomorrowland, Bird’s latest project, which looks to have all the originality and balls out creativity of The Incredibles and more to spare.
But that’s not the only problem Bird faces: with the gushing river of superhero films quickly readying to burst it’s banks and flood the industry, Bird must face a monster that he in part helped to create. How will the new landscape influence a franchise that’s as much about the modern family as it is about superheroes kicking ass? Fortunately Bird is ready for the challenge, according to a conversation he had with IGN recently, courtesy of Screenrant:
A lot of superhero films have been made since Incredibles and it is kind of like an athletic field that’s just kind of dried up dirt now, with a few clumps of grass. And I think what the challenge is how do you step outside of that and say, ‘Hey, there’s another place for our heroes to go.’ So that’s kind of the challenge. People make a lot of following some of road map and Damon and I can tell you from making this film that you’re just bumping into furniture. Hopefully if you’re on the right path you don’t actually know where you’re going completely. I love those characters in ‘Incredibles’, but I’m also a moviegoer and I want to be surprised by movies. I want them to zig when they should be zagging. That’s the goal with that one.”
Well it’s comforting to see that Bird has game plan, not to mention one that doesn’t require him to throw his hat into a ring filled with Iron helmets and webbed masks. At the centre of Bird’s intentions is a desire to be surprised by what happens to the power toting Parr family, which can only be good news.
One of the main strengths of The Incredibles is that it was never a straight superhero film, and that ability to skirt the traditional recipe has the potential to lead to another great animated film. And it’s not as though we don’t have current data to support this. Big Hero 6 was an unbridled success, and despite being a Marvel adaptation it still had that tang of family-turned-heroes sweetness.
It’ll be a long time before we see a hint of animated red spandex that doesn’t belong to Spiderman, but I’m happy to leave it in Brad Bird’s more than capable hands. In the meantime, Tomorrowland is out May 22. What would you like to see in an Incredibles sequel?
There’s been rumours flying all over the place about Daniel Bruhl and the part he will play in the Marvel Universe since his name was attached to the Studio late last year. Well the answer has finally revealed itself as io9 reports the Rush actor will play Captain America’s nemesis Baron Zemo in Captain America: Civil War.
What? You don’t know who Baron Zemo is? You think he sounds like the name of a disappointing brand of German wine? Relax – for a very important villain, he’s not that well known. He’s most commonly seen going toe to toe with the cap. An advanced weapons builder strongly connected with the Nazis in World War 2 and world domination by the master race, it would be very easy to confuse this dude with Captain America villain the Red Skull, played by Hugo Weaving. The main difference? Baron Zemo wears a hood. All the time. Seriously, it’s glued onto his face with a super-strong adhesive that he created and Captain America used against him.
But don’t worry, there doesn’t necessarily need to be a whole bunch of flash backs and cryo-freezing to bring this villain into the modern day. Like most comic book heroes and villains, Zemo has multiple incarnations including a son who succeeds his father. The son also has significant ties to the Marvel Civil War storyline, having recruited villains to fight for Iron Man and promote the registration of super-heroes. Whether or not this is the way the film is going to go is uncertain – despite the film having “Civil War” in the title, we can’t be sure how faithful it will be to the comics. In any case, Zemo would have a lot of information about Captain America’s past should Tony Stark want to use it against him. Also, Sebastian Stan is confirmed to be returning as the Winter Soldier, so could the two be working together?
This would be Daniel Bruhl’s second turn as a Nazi, having played a German war hero in Quentin Tarantino‘s Inglorious Basterds. Garnering critical acclaim for films like Rush, A Most Wanted Man and The Fifth Estate, this will be Bruhl’s first baby step into the Marvel universe. Let’s hope he pulls it off – it’s a big hood to fill. Captain America: Civil War is scheduled to be released on May 6, 2016.
Between all of the phases we have seen in Marvel’s universe and the 10 or so Marvel Studios movies we will be seeing in the next few years, it seems as though every hero with movie potential has been accounted for and is being accommodated into the ongoing continuity. But as can be the the case when parents have a large number of children, sometimes kids can be left out or forgotten from time to time. In the Marvel family, that child is The Incredible Hulk. Sure, he’s one of the older kids and he developed early, but one too many slip-ups and he’s just not a priority anymore when you’re picking where everyone’s going out to eat on Sunday night. Nowadays, the not-so-jolly green giant is one of the only characters in the Marvel Universe who has been deliberately demoted to an ensemble player.
To be fair, Hulk has had his fair share of chances. First there was Ang Lee’s Hulk, which with perfect hindsight was never going to work in the current continuity – if only for it’s soft and at times quiet intensity. There were teasers and posters and famous actors galore but in the end it didn’t wow the kids, and that matters. So Hulk peaked too soon, so what? That sort of thing can easily be remedied with a reboot. Dump damaged Eric Bana and morose Jennifer Connelly and give us Edward Norton and…Liv Tyler, as a physicist? Really? Ok, whatever. Well Louis Leterrier was directing with a few Transporter films under his belt, so balls-out action wouldn’t be a problem. No, the problem was once again timing. The Incredible Hulk hit theatres a month after Iron Man. In a direct comparison – and be honest, how could there not be in such a small time span? – Hulk just couldn’t cut it. Also, Liv Tyler was supposed to be a physicist. Just saying, it’s weird.
So we have one Hulk film that went for critical acclaim and lost popular appeal, and a second film that opted for action and lost to Iron Man. The continuity for the reboot could have been salvaged if talks hadn’t broken down with Norton. Don’t get me wrong, Mark Ruffalo is an impeccable Banner, but where does that leave our favourite gamma-giant?
Looking back on it, it’s not hard to see why Marvel would be more than a little gun-shy with the Hulk property. Whether they like it or not, a Hulk movie would always be in direct comparison with another Marvel movie a few months before or after. Well we know for a fact that the risk isn’t planned for the next four or five years since Hulk didn’t make an appearance in the run-down of upcoming Marvel films. The question becomes, is it worth taking the risk again in the future?
There is a lot more working in Hulk’s favour now. For one, we have the makings of a Robert Downey Jr. factor with Mark Ruffalo. Say what you will about the popularity of Iron Man, if an actor even 10% less charismatic than Downey was wearing the suit then the glaring flaws in Iron Man 2 and Iron Man 3 may not have been so compassionately overlooked. The character is as popular as the actor, and that balance is what we could see in mark Ruffalo. Sure, he was a little quiet at times in The Avengers, but he got his hands dirty when it was needed and a fair few scenes were based entirely around him. When you compare how much attention and plot was shared out between Hulk and, say, Thor, it’s pretty even – maybe even a little more for Hulk.
And everyone loved Ruffalo as Banner, in many ways because is anti-Iron Man. A soft spoken, fidgety, unstable man with unmatchable power that is completely out of his control – a destroyer to Stark’s creator. So what we see happening is a bedrock being established that may not have as much money, love or attention behind it from Marvel as Iron Man does, but whether intended or not there’s a popularity that’s getting some muscle to it.
So a Ruffalo/Hulk film is definitely something that the audience wants to see. the question becomes how feasible it is. For one, expectations from story-lines are not what they used to be, back in the day, you could just have a dude with superpowers figuring stuff out and end it with a huge testosterone-charged fight. But with more films comes more variations, and with more variations comes more expectations for something new and daring. Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy have a similar team-up premise, but could they be more structurally different? And despite being the classic action hero, Captain America: The Winter Soldier was as much an espionage film as an action flick. Bottom line, you can pick any number of early Hulk story-lines and throw a dart at one and you’ll come up with a big green dude not wanting to be a big green dude and fighting against another big green dude. Or a green dude with a big head. And as much as we’d like to see a Planet Hulk film, what are the chances without a heck of a lot more foundation that just isn’t there?
Maybe it’s stupidly simple. Maybe it’s just Hulk’s affiliation with war and the justification of wild violence that Marvel just doesn’t want to probe to closely – unless he’s a cartoon where it’s easier to write off destruction. The phrase “today’s political climate” is one that I’d like to punch repeatedly in the face, but it’s something that a big studio has to have a ten minute conversation about every month. So is Hulk only a hero when he’s around other heroes who can point him in the right direction and tell him what to smash?
Bottom line, Hulk is the kid that Marvel just can’t deal with right now. They have to make sure that the more well behaved kids are eating right and have the support they need to get onto college. Once all the other kids have flown the nest and can make it on their own, then they can turn their attention to Hulk. Maybe by that point the landscape will be more accepting of alternative, darker story-lines in the Marvel continuity. It’s definitely going in that direction, so perhaps 7 or 8 years down the line, we’ll want to see banner when he’s angry.
With the teaser still getting hit after hit and the official site up and running, you’d think we’d be content with all we’re getting in anticipation of Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron. Well, you’d be wrong! So it’s a good thing that some behind the scenes footage has been included in the Guardians of the Galaxy DVD of some behind the scenes footage for the superhero sequel. Just click on the link for a snippet of what you can see, as included on the Guardians Facebook page:
After its record for most viewed trailer of 2014 being blitzed by Star Wars: The Force Awakens, it’s no surprise that Avengers: Age Of Ultron is looking to gain back some of its hype. Well an Official Website can go some way to doing that. Well, I mean a full fifteen minutes of unseen footage could do the job a lot better, but hey I’m not greedy.
The site is really an offshoot of the Marvel website, so most of the links for videos, games and characters will take you out of Avengers territory and into general marvel-land. The teaser is up on the site, along with a decent enough synopsis for the film. It reads as follows:
Marvel Studios presents “Avengers: Age of Ultron”, the epic follow-up to the biggest super-hero movie of all time. When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as the fate of the planet hangs in the balance. As the villainous Ultron emerges, it is up to the Avengers to stop him from enacting his terrible plans, and soon uneasy alliances and unexpected action pave the way for an epic and unique global adventure.
Arguably the best new material that appears on the site is the soundtrack sample that plays in the background. It’s a far-cry from the Alan Silvestri orchestral flurries of Avengers Assemble , and is a handy nod to the techno-thriller edge of the sequel.
So what do you think of the site? What would you like to see on it next?