There's no escaping James Franco. In little more than a decade, the 30-something actor has risen up from relative obscurity to become a worldwide sex symbol and Hollywood leading man with tremendous star power, despite making some career choices — after receiving critical acclaim for his performance in Milk (2008), Franco returned to TV in 2009 with recurring roles on 30 Rock and the soap opera General Hospital — that would have derailed the careers of other actors.
Passed over for several major roles earlier in his career, Franco was chosen to bring Fox's Planet of the Apes franchise back to life and to headline Disney's Oz the Great and Powerful, which is currently the highest grossing movie of the year by a wide margin. How did Franco go from being a TV "geek" to the Be conversant in James Franco >> Posted 04.09.13 by BrentJS
king wizard of the box office? Just watch the movies on the list we've put together for you and, in under eight hours, you'll be able to dazzle your friends and co-workers with your understanding of the ascension of Franco.
Comic book legend Stan Lee first started working for Marvel Comics in 1939, back when it was still known Timely Comics, eventually co-creating Marvel's most enduring characters, including the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man and the Avengers, to name a few. Still going strong at 90 years old, many might be surprised to know that Lee hasn't worked at Marvel Comics for years, as he is still seen as a figurehead for the comic book company. Lee continues to field questions and comments on Twitter, where he has a huge following, and continues his association with Marvel through his many cameos in Marvel movies.
Lee made his first onscreen cameo in the 1989 TV movie The Trial of the Incredible Hulk, and would go on to appear in 2000's X-Men, all four Spider-Man, 2003's Daredevil and Hulk, both Fantastic Four movies, 2006's X-Men: The Last Stand, both Iron Man movies as well as 2011's Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger and last year's The Avengers (but not, inexplicably, 2003's X2: X-Men United or X-Men: First Class). Lee's entire, chronological cameo history has been compiled into a single video (via Mary Sue), including most of our ten favorites (sorry, Mallrats doesn't count) and excluding Lee's voice over work from Marvel's animated series. watch the video >> Posted 01.09.13 by Ryan
So far, not much has been revealed about how director The Amazing Spider-Man different from the trilogy of movies that Sam Raimi directed. With no trailer released yet, anxious fans were recently treated to the first official photos outside of January's first official look at Andrew Garfield in his Spider-Man costume and February's look of Spidey about to use his webshooters.
Of course, there have been plenty of "spy pics" from the Amazing Spider-Man set, some of which just show Spidey running across the street, while others were more revealing. Some May spy photos confirmed that Rhys Ifans was going to play Dr. Curt Connors, a.k.a. the Lizard, a fact that Sony was trying to keep very close to the vest.
Both The Amazing Spider-Man and 2002's Spider-Man cover the character's origin story, which is how the movies will be similar, though Amazing Spider-Man has Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) as Peter Parker's love interest and not Mary Jane, which is more in keeping with the comic book origin. In an interview with The LA Times, Webb says that another difference between his and Raimi's Spider-Man movies is that being a nerd is much different than when the character was first created in 1962. what did webb say? >> Posted 07.19.11 by Ryan
With Spider-Man 3 expectations were high because ... well, why shouldn't they have been? The first movie was good, the second one was great, and assuming that a pattern was forming it looked like the franchise's third movie was going to be awesome. Yeah. Let's just say the actual Spider-Man 3 didn't meet our expectations — hell, it didn't meet our expectations for the Chipmunks movie. Our hopes are still high for the Spider-Man reboot. But just in case, we've charted out the problems with the last movie in hopes that Marc Webb and Co. are paying attention.
See Rewind: Spider-Man 3 >> Posted 01.19.11 by reelz
Even though director James Cameron said only a month ago that he would not direct the rebooted Spider-Man movie because it would be "a little bit sloppy seconds," apparently he is willing to discuss the movie with the director ultimately chosen for the job, Marc Webb. According to MTV, Cameron's producing partner, Jon Landau, confirmed that the two directors met and that the topic of discussion was shooting the Spider-Man reboot in 3-D, a technique Cameron mastered in directing Avatar.
Last [week] we met [with Webb. He] wants to do the next one in 3-D, which they've announced that they want to do. So, we want to try to support that as much as possible.
What's interesting about this meeting is less the fact that Webb sought out Cameron for his 3-D knowledge than that Cameron has long been associated with Spider-Man as a movie property. Cameron drafted a script for a big-screen Spider-Man adaptation for Carolco back in 1991, more than a decade before Sam Raimi's Spider-Man broke box-office records and helped to entrench superhero movies as a summer box-office staple. Cameron's plans were crushed beneath the weight of legal actions over character rights and contract disputes. Carolco and Marvel Comics both declared bankruptcy in 1996 and the rights to Spider-Man, including Carmeron's script, went to MGM, who later traded them to Columbia Pictures for the exclusive rights to 007.
In light of Cameron's history with Spider-Man, it's easier to understand the underlying bitterness in his "sloppy seconds" remark, but it only makes his decision to meet with Webb all the more surprising. But, Landau said that Cameron agreed to the meeting because he "loved" Webb's latest movie, (500) Days of Summer, and because of their shared belief that the right way to release a movie in 3-D is to shoot it in 3-D, rather than to have it converted to 3-D in post-production.
Other movies are turning to [3-D] now, some of which I agree with, some of which I don't agree with. Clash of The Titans is coming out in 3-D; they're converting it very hastily into 3-D. I'm not in favor if that. If you want to shoot a 3-D movie, shoot it in 3-D.
The currently untitled Spider-Man reboot is being written by James Vanderbilt and produced by Avi Arad and Laura Ziskin for Columbia Pictures and Marvel Studios. Though no cast announcements have been made yet, Sony Pictures has already announced that the movie will be released in 3-D on July 3, 2012. Posted 02.17.10 by BrentJS
Only one day after Logan Lerman, the star of the upcoming movie Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, told Billy Bush of Access Hollywood that he was in talks for the lead role of Peter Parker, aka Spider-Man, in the rebooted franchise, the 18-year-old actor appears to be going back on his words. Or, perhaps, his earlier statements were true, but he's been asked to "zip it" by Sony's reps.
Either way, his latest comments to MTV about the subject make the news of his involvement with the movie far less intriguing. In the previous interview, he spoke of having a "few discussions" with the studio about playing the role, now he simply says that he is "hoping to be considered" along with "millions of actors out there." And, his comment about wanting to "focus on the human element a little bit more," has been replaced with the very bland statement, "I'm just a huge fan, that's all I can say."
Can say? Does that mean that Lerman actually does knows more than he's telling, but the studio execs have put the clamp down on him? Watch the video below and decide for yourself. Posted 02.06.10 by BrentJS
Who will wear the mask?
The January 11th news that Sony was scrapping Spider-Man 4 and rebooting the franchise following the departure of director Sam Raimi took nearly everyone by surprise. Even the title star of all three movies, Tobey Maguire, had updated the status of Spider-Man 4 only a few days before saying, "It's all happening right now. It's all sort of coming together."
In the wake of the news, numerous casting rumors have come bubbling up from the depths of the Internet. So far, none of them have proven to be credible. The latest news, coming out of an interview Billy Bush conducted with Logan Lerman for Access Hollywood, has the star of the upcoming movie Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief in talks for the lead role of Peter Parker, aka Spider-Man, in the rebooted franchise.
There have been a few discussions, it's definitely something I'm looking into.
It's just, you know, conversations are starting. It's a long process with the studio and the producers and everything. But it's definitely a project that I'm really interested in, of course. I'd love to focus on the human element a little bit more. It'd be such a fun experience.
Casting the 18-year-old in the lead seems to fit with Sony's decision to take the franchise back to Spider-Man's origin as a geeky high school student who initially abuses his new powers. However, no sooner had the Lerman story broke than popular comic book movie blog HeatVision attempted to debunk the news.
While a "wide net" is being cast, according to a studio spokesman, "No offers have been made, nor have any business discussions been made with Lerman."
The actor's camp also confirms no business discussions are being held at this time.
Admittedly, it does seem unlikely that the star of one burgeoning franchise would be offered the lead role in another. Then again, if it works for Ryan Reynolds with his Deadpool and Green Lantern roles, perhaps Lerman could do the same with Percy Jackson and Spider-Man. Posted 02.05.10 by BrentJS
The recent news that the release of Spider-Man 4 might be pushed back or even cancelled because of problems with the script generated a plethora of forum posts and blogs speculating about the problems in question. It also prompted Marvel Studios and Disney to move up the releases of Thor and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, respectively, to take advantage of the plum early summer slot.
If a recent MovieLine article can be believed, the problems with the Spider-Man 4 script are numerous. The article purports to contain excerpts of a leaked email sent by Sony Pictures co-chairman Amy Pascal to director Sam Raimi, in which she shreds the script apart, especially some of the racier elements.
pg. 25. Have we not explored "accidental web-slinging as obvious premature ejac" metaphor enough in three movies? Feeling a bit hack now. Esp when Aunt May walks in on him watching the YouTube clip of the Vulture attack. We get it, web = semen. Wrists = penises. Aunt = Oedipal mother figure. Ick. Not even sexy.
pg. 37. PG-13! PG-13! No nudity! Where is this coming from? And full-frontal? Maguire has total nevernude rider, he's not even working out this time (he's really porked up since starving himself for Brothers), we're CGI on everything below first chin. Definitely definitely no d*ck. CAA will f'cking kill me if they even ever see this page. TEAR OUT AND BURN.
In another, Pascal warns against using plot devices that are too similar to those inJames Cameron's Avatar.
pg. 56. OK. I KNOW we all had a conf call about how important Avatar is to our business. I GET it. But we're gonna get KILLED on the blogs with this Vulture nonsense. [John] Malkovich can't — CAN NOT — lie down in a pod, have his brain shoot thru a psychedelic tunnel, and then FLY out of his lair in the ten-foot-tall body of a blue vulture. NO. First of all, Isn't Vulture color scheme usually green? Second of all, NO. DERIVATIVE. Still think Iron Man-style armor with wings is way to go. Or Goblin gliders strapped to arms. Either/or. Both art concepts were solid.
If the email turns out to be true, then the script problems may prove insurmountable, no matter how many writers are brought in to tinker with it. Posted 01.08.10 by BrentJS
It was revealed in October that plans for a Venom movie spinning off of the Marvel Comics villain featured in Spider-Man 3 were moving forward, with Spider-Man 4 screenwriter Gary Ross doing rewrites and possibly directing the picture. Apparently, the spin-off will not involve the only actor to ever portray the popular comic book villain on the big screen, Topher Grace.
In a recent interview with MovieWeb, Grace seemed unsure of how to answer questions about the Venom movie. When asked if he was interested in returning to the role (even though his character apparently died at the end of Spider-Man 3), Grace said, "You know, I guess." He went on to say that he hadn't "heard anything" from Sony about the project. When asked to clarify whether or not he had any current plans to appear in a Venom spin-off, Grace conceded, "No, I don't think so." Posted 12.21.09 by BrentJS
Appearing on the final day of the 37th annual UBS Global Media & Communications Conference, Disney Co. president and CEO Bob Iger confidently defended Disney's recent acquisitions of Pixar and Marvel. While he admitted that the movie business "is more challenging" than it has been "in a long time," Iger cited Jon Favreau's success with the little-known character of Iron Man as an example of one of the "potential surprises" awaiting Disney in Marvel's huge collection of characters.
Iger said that Disney will be able to test market the appeal of characters through its Disney XD channel before committing vast amounts of money to the development of its next potential franchise. Iger also said that Disney is"just fine" with allowing Sony to keep the rights to produce Spider-Man movies, even though the character is Marvel's premiere superhero, citing Marvel's right to handle the licensing of the films.
Spider-Man 4 is currently slated to begin shooting in March. Director Sam Raimi is back at the helm, with Tobey Maguire reprising the role of Peter Parker/Spider-Man. Posted 12.12.09 by BrentJS