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February 2003

Garner confirmed for 'Elektra'
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2003, 7:04PM CST by Franklin Harris
The Associated Press confirms that "Alias" star Jennifer Garner has signed on to star in "Elektra," a spin-off of the current hit film "Daredevil."

Rob Lowe to star in new 'Salem's Lot' mini
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2003, 6:59PM CST by Franklin Harris
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Rob Lowe will star in a new miniseries adaptation of Stephen King's "Salem's Lot" for TNT. It will air in 2004.

Marvel's 'Werewolf by Night' gets screenwriter
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2003, 6:55PM CST by Franklin Harris
Another third-string Marvel Comics character is headed to the big screen. According to Variety, Oscar-nominated screenwriter Robert Nelson Jacobs is writing the script for "Werewolf by Night," based on the '70s horror comic.

Rumor debunked: Pixar not teaming up with Miyazaki
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2003, 6:50PM CST by Franklin Harris
File under "Just a Rumor," but Dark Horizons reports that after Pixar parts ways with Disney -- assuming it does at the end of its current contract -- it will team up with Japanese animation legend Hayao Miyazaki ("Spirited Away") to produce Miyazaki's first CGI, English-language feature. Frankly, I doubt Miyazaki is interested in directing a fully CGI film, and he has said he isn't really interested in non-Japanese audiences, but we'll see.

UPDATE: Dark Horizons debunked this rumor on Friday, Feb. 28, 2003. See, I told you so.

Live-action 'Thundercats', 'He-Man' in development?
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2003, 6:44PM CST by Franklin Harris
Don't pre-order tickets yet, but Dark Horizons reports that live-action film versions of "Thundercats" and "He-Man and the Masters of the Universe," both popular '80s cartoons/toys now enjoying renewed popularity, are in early stages of development. (And, in the case of "Thundercats," even "development" is too strong a word.)

Of the two, "He-Man" seems more likely to happen.

UPDATE (Feb. 28, 2003): Dark Horizons now disowns the "He-Man" half of the story, and I disown the whole thing.

'M:I 3' gets new director
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2003, 6:38PM CST by Franklin Harris
Dark Horizons reports that "Mission: Impossible 3" is on its way to having a new director. Paramount is looking to have Joe Carnahan helm the third film in the series, taking the place of David Fincher, who withdrew to direct another movie.

Live-action 'Lupin III' to film this year
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2003, 6:24AM CST by Franklin Harris
A live-action film version of "Lupin III," based on the popular anime and manga series, will begin production this year, reports ICv2.com. The movie will feature a cast of Hollywood and international stars in order to capitalize on the manga's worldwide appeal.

'Buffy' sings her swan song
Posted Thursday, February 27, 2003, 6:15AM CST by Franklin Harris
It's official. The current season is the last for "Buffy: The Vampire Slayer." Sarah Michelle Gellar tells Entertainment Weekly that it's time to move on.

"This is how I want to go out -- on top, at our best," she said.

The series will end with a five-episode story arc.

Source: Cinescape Online

'Cowboy Bebop' movie screens in April
Posted Saturday, February 22, 2003, 10:10AM CST by Franklin Harris
"Cowboy Bebop: The Movie" (known in Japan as "Cowboy Bebop: Knockin' on Heaven's Door") will be released in U.S. theaters on April 4, reports Anime News Network. Details about the movie's release will be available on its official Web site.

'Star Wars' cartoon coming to Cartoon Network
Posted Friday, February 21, 2003, 1:10PM CST by Franklin Harris
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Cartoon Network will produce 20 three-minute animated shorts depicting events during the Clone War era of the "Star Wars" saga. These "Clone Wars" cartoons will air in November.

"Samurai Jack" creator Genndy Tartakovsky and Lucasfilm Ltd. will produce the shorts.

Doc Ock is cast for 'Amazing Spider-Man'
Posted Thursday, February 20, 2003, 9:15AM CST by Franklin Harris
Dark Horizons reports that Alfred Molina has officially been cast as Dr. Octopus in the "Spider-Man" sequel, "The Amazing Spider-Man." Also, producer Avi Arad says the film will feature only one major villain.

More classic Gundam coming to Cartoon Network
Posted Thursday, February 20, 2003, 5:42AM CST by Franklin Harris
Anime News Network reports that two Gundam series are coming to Cartoon Network.

Cartoon Network will air "Gundam F-91" and both edited and unedited versions of "Zeta Gundam," the first sequel to the original "Mobile Suit Gundam."

Neither series has a scheduled air date.

Stan Lee to produce 'Forever Man' movie
Posted Thursday, February 20, 2003, 5:35AM CST by Franklin Harris
So what if Stan Lee hasn't created a successful superhero in 30 years? Hollywood doesn't care. According to The Hollywood Reporter (via ICv2.com), Lee is producing an original superhero movie called "Forever Man" through his POW! Films company.

PR: 'X-Files' writer takes on 'The Night Stalker'
Posted Wednesday, February 19, 2003, 8:06PM CST by Franklin Harris
PRESS RELEASE: If Kolchak: The Night Stalker's creator Jeff Rice is any judge, Kolchak fans will be in for a real treat come this June. That's when DEVIL IN THE DETAILS, fifth in Moonstone's Kolchak series, has been slated to appear in comic stores, with a riveting script by former X-Files comic book scribe, Stefan Petrucha and art by Batman's Trevor Von Eeden.

In his notes on the script, Rice raved about Petrucha's work, with such superlatives as "Wonderfully Grotesque!" among many others. Rice was so pleased with the script, he felt it should be used as the template for all future Kolchak comics scripts, and at one point enthused, "This scene is? well? literature. It has genuine substance very neatly handled. Take care. This kind of thing could spread and, ohmigawd, "elevate" the comic novel a rung or two."

Scripting the X-Files paranormal progenitor puts Petrucha on familiar territory, a place he's particularly delighted to be, since he considers the original Night Stalker TV movie the best vampire film of all time.

Add to that the moody art of Trevor Von Eeden and a picture perfect cover by Doug Kaluba (pictured above) and you've got a surefire hit.

Once again, Kolchak: The Devil In the Details will be on sale this June from Moonstone Books (http://www.moonstonebooks.com). Order now, order early, order often!

'Smallville' creators get 'Iron Man' movie
Posted Friday, February 14, 2003, 5:31AM CST by Franklin Harris
Variety reports (via Cinescape) that "Smallville" creators Alfred Gough and Miles Millar will script New Line Cinema's "Iron Man" feature, based on the Marvel comic. The film is tentatively slated for a 2005 release.

'Snake Plissken' anime feature due in 2005
Posted Wednesday, February 12, 2003, 6:38AM CST by Franklin Harris
Japanese animation studio Production I.G. tells Anime News Network that it is at work on an animated feature about Snake Plissken, the anti-hero protagonist of John Carpenter's "Escape from New York" and "Escape from L.A." Kurt Russell, who starred in the "Escape" films, will provide the animated Plissken's voice, and Carpenter will provide the musical score. The anime, which should be 80 to 90 minutes in length, is scheduled for release in late 2004 or early 2005. A 30-second teaser for the film will be included on the upcoming "Escape from New York" special edition DVD.

Four more Marvel movies in 2004
Posted Tuesday, February 11, 2003, 6:48AM CST by Franklin Harris
Marvel Entertainment's Avi Arad tells the Chicago Sun-Times that there are four Marvel Comics movies on tap for 2004: "The Amazing Spider-Man," "Namor: The Sub-Mariner," "The Punisher" and either "The Fantastic Four" or "Ghost Rider."

Source: Comics2Film

Lucas: No non-'special' original trilogy on DVD
Posted Tuesday, February 11, 2003, 6:39AM CST by Franklin Harris
The Digital Bits confirms what many of us already suspected: George Lucas says the original (non-"Special Edition") versions of the original "Star Wars" trilogy will not be released on DVD. Lucas repeated his statement that the Special Editions reflect his true vision of the films. So, unless you think Greedo should shoot first, you're out of luck.

'Aquaman' cartoon dead in the water
Posted Wednesday, February 5, 2003, 5:52AM CST by Franklin Harris
Comics2Film passes along an insider report claiming that the previously announced "Aquaman" cartoon series for Cartoon Network and Kids WB is now "dead in the water." An animated series starring some other DC Comics heroes, however, is in the works: "Metal Men."

The WB finds its Tarzan
Posted Wednesday, February 5, 2003, 5:48AM CST by Franklin Harris
According to The Hollywood Reporter, The WB has cast a 22-year-old Calvin Klein model from Australia as Tarzan in a pilot that places Edgar Rice Burroughs' jungle lord in a modern setting.

New 'Battle of the Planets' coming?
Posted Wednesday, February 5, 2003, 5:27AM CST by Franklin Harris
ICv2.com has a sketchy report that a new, 52-episode "Battle of the Planets" series will air on American television this fall. Like the original, the new series, "Battle of the Planets: The New Exploits of G-Force," will combine new animation with animation culled from the 105-episode "Gatchaman" series from Japan.

Also, Toon Zone reports that the new series will feature "Gatchaman" episodes not previously dubbed into English, including the dramatic final episodes.

UPDATE: Speaking with a representative of Sandy Frank Productions, the company that produces "Battle of the Planets," Anime News Network confirmed that no new footage is being animated for the new series. Also, Sandy Frank Productions has no set number of episodes for the new series but expects 26 to be complete by September. In addition to these episodes, Sandy Frank is producing eight 90-minute features based on the same "Gatchaman" footage.

B-movie actress Lana Clarkson dead in Spector case
Posted Tuesday, February 4, 2003, 7:13PM CST by Franklin Harris
LOS ANGELES - Record producer Phil Spector, 62, was arrested Monday and charged with murder in the death of actress Lana Clarkson. Clarkson, 40, was best known for starring in several B movies, notably "Barbarian Queen," "Barbarian Queen II: The Empress Strikes Back," "Deathstalker" and "The Haunting of Morella."

Cult horror actors join forces for new movie
Posted Sunday, February 2, 2003, 2:48PM CST by Franklin Harris
Creature Corner reports that scream queen Brinke Stevens and screenwriter Sean O'Bannon have formed Unholy Alliance Entertainment, a production company geared toward making modestly budgeted horror and sci-fi films. The company's first project is "Blood Of My Blood," a vampire epic pitting modern-day bloodsuckers against a group of elite vampire slayers backed by a descendant of Abraham van Helsing ("Dracula"). Tom Savini, Barbara Crampton, Debbie Rochon, David Hess and Reggie Bannister are all attached to the project, which is still seeking funding. According to the Brinke Stevens Fan Club Web site, the Sci-Fi Channel is considering "Blood of My Blood" as a Sci-Fi original movie.


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