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NEWS ARCHIVE

January 2002

'Back to the Future' on DVD in 2002
Posted Wednesday, January 30, 2002, 1:02PM CST by Franklin Harris
Bob Gale, producer of the "Back to the Future" films, confimred to BTTF.com that the time-travel trilogy will be released on DVD later this year.

New 'Wonder Woman' film scribe
Posted Wednesday, January 30, 2002, 12:56PM CST by Franklin Harris
According to Comics2Film, a new, unnamed writer is working on the "Wonder Woman" screenplay. This follows drafts by Todd Alcott ("13 Ghosts") and Jon Cohen ("Minority Report").

'Daredevil' casting almost complete
Posted Wednesday, January 30, 2002, 12:54PM CST by Franklin Harris
According to reports in Variety and The Hollywood Reporter, Jennifer Garner is indeed on board as Elektra in "Dardevil," starring Ben Affleck as the Marvel superhero. Michael Clarke Duncan has signed to play The Kingpin.

Indy 4 news keeps on coming
Posted Friday, January 25, 2002, 9:54AM CST by Franklin Harris
Various sources, including Fox News, report that Steven Spielberg, George Lucas and Harrison Ford are getting closer to making the long-awaited fourth "Indiana Jones" film. Reports are that there is a story but no actual script as yet. As always with these Indy 4 stories, don't get your hopes up until the cameras roll.

Connery to be an 'Extraordinary Gentlemen'?
Posted Friday, January 25, 2002, 9:51AM CST by Franklin Harris
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Sean Connery is in early talks to star in director Stephen Norrington's "League of Extraordinary Gentlemen," based on Alan Moore's comic book miniseries/

Negotiations have yet to begin, but Connery is reportedly eager to star in the film, wich features various Victorian-era literary characters, including Capt. Nemo, Dr. Jekyll, Allan Quatermain and Mina Harker.

(So, would Connery make an excellent Quatermain, or what?)

'Spider-Man' cartoon goes to MTV
Posted Wednesday, January 23, 2002, 8:12PM CST by Franklin Harris
Variety reports than MTV will be the home of an all-CGI "Spider-Man" cartoon to debut this fall.

'Birds of Prey' set for WB fall schedule
Posted Wednesday, January 23, 2002, 8:08PM CST by Franklin Harris
Cinescape reports that "Birds of Prey," a TV series based on the DC Comic book of the same name, will be part of The WB's fall 2002 TV schedule.

ADV Films acquires 'Genesis Climber Mospeada'
Posted Wednesday, January 23, 2002, 6:32PM CST by Franklin Harris
PRESS RELEASE: HOUSTON, Jan. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- ADV FILMS is proud to announce the acquisition of the rights for the home video release of the seminal anime series, Genesis Climber MOSPEADA, from Harmony Gold. MOSPEADA will be presented in a Japanese-language version with English subtitles only.

ADV's release of Genesis Climber MOSPEADA marks the first time ever all 25-episodes of this classic animated series have been made available to North American audiences in their original, uncut form. MOSPEADA was first seen in North America in an English-dubbed format as Robotech: New Generation, the third and final act of the groundbreaking 85-episode Robotech series. The series was modified to fit into Robotech continuity, with major revisions made to the original script and scene sequence. Building on the success of Robotech on DVD, ADV is currently planning a DVD release of this title.

"Taking a cue from the glut of giant transformable mecha as the linchpin for sustaining productions," Robotech producer Carl Macek said, "MOSPEADA chose to go against the norm and personalized the mecha in the form of transformable body armor. The result is a more intimate and believable storyline."

"Fans have been demanding to see MOSPEADA for years," ADV President John Ledford said. "Bringing it to the States is a big honor for us at ADV, and we're especially happy to be releasing it in the Japanese-language, which is the way it was intended to be seen."

It's the year 2083, and mysterious aliens known as the Inbit have ruled the Earth for a generation. A fleet of rebel fighters from humanity's outpost on Mars journeys to Earth to reclaim their homeworld, but they are tragically wiped out, leaving heroic young pilot Stig Bernard as the last survivor. Determined to succeed in his quest, Bernard sets out on a suicide mission to invade the Inbit headquarters. Along the way, he gathers a small group of freedom fighters, along with an assortment of powerful robotic weapons and fantastic transforming vehicles to help his cause. Can this valiant band of rebels stare down extinction and wrest their homeworld from the clutches of their violent oppressors? Or will the human race meet its end?

ADV Films acquires 'Southern Cross'
Posted Monday, January 21, 2002, 7:08PM CST by Franklin Harris
PRESS RELEASE: ADV FILMS is pleased to announce the acquisition of the home video distribution rights to the classic anime series, Southern Cross, from Harmony Gold. Southern Cross will be presented in a Japanese-language version with English subtitles only.

ADV's release of Southern Cross marks the first time all 23-episodes of this seminal anime series have ever been made available to North America in their original, uncut form. Southern Cross was originally released in Japan as a Japanese-language series, and was first seen in North America in an English-dubbed format as Robotech: Robotech Masters, the second act in the 85-episode Robotech series. The series was modified to fit into Robotech continuity, with several script and scene changes made to the original Japanese episodes, including changes to various characters' names and relationships. Building on the success of Robotech on DVD, ADV FILMS is currently planning a DVD only release of this title.

"Tatsunoko is one of Japan's leading animation studios," Robotech producer Carl Macek said. "Their ambitious production of Southern Cross in 1984 shows just how much their writers and producers were influenced by Western pop culture. It is a mature storyline that pulls away from typical anime conventions to tell a story acceptable for a global market."

"Southern Cross is a major part of anime history," ADV President John Ledford said. "Bringing it to the States in its Japanese-language version is a major coup for ADV."

When the Zor -- a warlike alien species -- attacks the human colony world of Grolier, the task of saving humanity from extinction falls on the shoulders of hot-headed Jeanne Francaix and the 15th Squadron of the Southern Cross army. But to save their world from extinction, they will have to rely on members of the Zor themselves.

Cartoon Network to save 'Invader Zim'?
Posted Saturday, January 19, 2002, 7:03PM CST by Franklin Harris
There is now an unconfirmed report circulating on Usenet that Cartoon Network is negotiating to purchase the rights to "Invader Zim" from Nickelodeon.

Developing...

4 Kids gets Fox Kids slots
Posted Saturday, January 19, 2002, 4:33PM CST by Franklin Harris
4 Kids Entertainment, the company that brought "Pokemon" and "Yu-Gi-Oh!" to the U.S., has sealed a deal to take over programming the Fox Network's Saturday morning schedule. 4 Kids will pay Fox $25.3 million per season and will take over beginning in September.

See Toon Zone for the full story.

Lucas loses battle against 'Star Wars' porn parody
Posted Saturday, January 19, 2002, 10:10AM CST by Franklin Harris
A federal judge ruled against George Lucas and Lucasfilm last week, saying that a company producing and selling an animated "Star Wars" parody could continue to do so, for now.

Media Market Group makes and sells "Star Ballz," a pornographic cartoon parody of "Star Wars" and other sci-fi movies and TV series, via a Web site, www.starballz.com.

"The Star Wars films are so famous that is extremely unlikely that consumers would believe that Star Ballz is associated with Star Wars or Lucasfilm," the judge wrote in her decision.

While this leaves MMG free to sell its videos for the time being, Lucasfilm will continue its lawsuit.

Source: E! Online

Marvel's 'Mangaverse' to go monthly
Posted Saturday, January 19, 2002, 9:50AM CST by Franklin Harris
Amid reports that Marvel Comics' first "Mangaverse" special is rapidly selling out across the country, Marvel has announced that it will public a monthly "Mangaverse" comic, written and illustrated by Ben Dunn, in April. The Mangaverse concept reinterprets classic Marvel superheroes as Japanese anime character archetypes.

See Newsarama for the full story.

CN adds Saturday 'Adult Swim Action' bloc
Posted Friday, January 18, 2002, 11:53AM CST by Franklin Harris
Changes are coming to Cartoon Network, but it's all good, as they say.

First, CN is dropping the Thursday repeats of its Adult Swim programs, currently airing Sunday nights (9 to 12, Central). Toonami Midnight Run will return to its Thursday slot.

Now the big news: CN is adding a second Adult Swim block, which will air on Saturdays. This new bloc, "Adult Swim Action," will, as its name suggests, feature action cartoons aimed at an adult (18-24) audience. So far, it looks to be an anime-heavy bloc.

"Cowboy Bebop" will move from Sunday to Saturday in order to join the new lineup. The rest of the inaugural schedule, to begin Feb. 23 (10 p.m. to 1 a.m., Central) is as follows:


  • 10:00 PM - Yu Yu Hakusho
  • 10:30 PM - Cowboy Bebop
  • 11:00 PM - Pilot Candidate
  • 11:30 PM - Gundam 0083
  • 12:00 AM - Outlaw Star
  • 12:30 AM - Tenchi Muyo

Source: Toon Zone

Batman, Superman, JL and X-Men video news
Posted Friday, January 18, 2002, 7:36AM CST by Franklin Harris
PRESS RELEASE: On April 23, the World's Greatest Super Heroes -- including Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Green Lantern, Hawkgirl and Martian Manhunter -- join forces for the feature-length VHS and DVD debut of "Justice League" from Warner Home Video (WHV). "Justice League" is available on VHS for $14.95 SRP and on DVD for $19.98 SRP.

X-tra crime-fighting thrills with Wolverine, Cyclops, Professor X and the rest of the X-men are also available as "X-men: Evolution -- X Marks The Spot" debuts on a "Marvel-ous" VHS for $12.95 SRP. The mutant mania continues, as previously released favorites "Xplosive Days" and "UnXpected Changes" are available on VHS for a new, low $12.94 SRP.

Additionally, everyone's favorite Caped Crusader swoops onto shelves with four new DVDs including "Batman: The Animated Series -- The Legend Begins," available on DVD for $19.98 SRP and for the first time on VHS for $14.95 SRP. "Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero" and "The Batman Superman Movie" chill the competition with their DVD debuts priced at $19.98 SRP and $14.93 SRP on VHS. Batman's most notorious nemesis has another trick up his sleeve as "Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker -- The Original, Uncut Version" allows fans to see the film like never before on DVD for $19.98 SRP.

The Joker gets the last laugh as WHV re-prices the original version of "Batman Beyond: Return of The Joker" (winner of the 2001 Annie Award for outstanding achievement in an animated home video production) to a new, low $14.94 SRP on VHS and $19.98 SRP on DVD.

Repriced Super Hero favorites include the originally released version of "Batman Beyond: Return of The Joker" for $14.94 SRP on VHS and $19.98 SRP on DVD and "X-men: Evolution" titles "Xplosive Days" and "UnXpected Changes" for $12.94 SRP on VHS.

Fans will enjoy extra savings with a $5 rebate for consumers who purchase "Justice League" and any two new "Batman" or "X-men" videos.

Nick cancels 'Invader Zim'
Posted Friday, January 18, 2002, 6:19AM CST by Franklin Harris
According to an unconfirmed report on Ain't It Cool News, Nickelodeon has cancelled "Invader Zim." The cable channel had picked up the series for a second season, but according to the report, Nick has cut its 20-episode order back to only six. "Invader Zim" was created by Jhonen Vasquez, creator of the "Johnny the Homicidal Maniac" comic book.
UPDATE: A story at Toon Zone seems to confirm the bad news.

Scott to produce new 'Blade Runner' cut
Posted Thursday, January 17, 2002, 6:32AM CST by Franklin Harris
In an interview with The Sci-Fi Wire, Ridley Scott confirmed that he is overseeing production of a definitive director's-cut DVD of his SF classic, "Blade Runner," which will be released later this year by Warner Bros. Home Video.

'Buffy' cartoon in limbo
Posted Thursday, January 17, 2002, 6:30AM CST by Franklin Harris
A cartoon version of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" is in limbo following the demise of the Fox Kids bloc, according to The Sci-Fi Wire. (Fox is looking to sub-let its Saturday morning bloc to a third party.)

Tarsem drops 'Constantine'
Posted Thursday, January 17, 2002, 6:27AM CST by Franklin Harris
Director Tarsem Singh ("The Cell") has left "Constantine," according to The Hollywood Reporter. Based on the DC comic book series "Hellblazer," "Constantine" was to star Nicolas Cage, but The Reporter went on to say it is unclear Cage is still attached to the project.

WB renews 'Smallville'
Posted Thursday, January 17, 2002, 6:23AM CST by Franklin Harris
The WB has renewed "Smallville" for a second season, according to The Sci-Fi Wire.

UPN extends 'Roswell'
Posted Thursday, January 17, 2002, 6:20AM CST by Franklin Harris
UPN has ordered at total of 20 episodes of "Roswell" for this season, so the show will survive through the end of its third year. But there is still no word on whether UPN will pick up the struggling series for a fourth season.

Fox closes 'The X-Files'
Posted Thursday, January 17, 2002, 6:15AM CST by Franklin Harris
Variety and The Hollywood Reporter are both reporting today that this season will be the last for "The X-Files."

Fox squashes 'The Tick'
Posted Thursday, January 10, 2002, 8:37AM CST by Franklin Harris
It was good while it lasted. According to numerous sources, Fox has officially announed that "The Tick" is cancelled following the show's January 24th episode.

Sommers to direct 'Argonauts'
Posted Wednesday, January 9, 2002, 8:51PM CST by Franklin Harris
Stephen Sommers ("The Mummy Returns") will direct "The Argonauts," a fantasy film that is on the fast track at DreamWorks and Universal, according to Variety columnist Michael Fleming. The film is about 20th Century explorers who encounter mythological beasts while searching for the legendary ship of Jason and the Argonauts.



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