Will Paul Greengrass be the guy to finally make The Stand into the epic motion picture event that Warner Bros. and CBS Films are dreaming of?
Too early to say with any authority.
Apparently, though, he's at the top of the directorial wishlist to tackle Stephen King's humdinger of a novel.
Only last week, it emerged that David Yates, the director behind the last four Harry Potter movies, decided to make a Tarzan movie for Warner Bros. Immediately, the big question was just which hunk of muscle would don a loincloth to play Edgar Rice Burroughs' jungle hero. The answer may already be forthcoming, as it looks like Alexander Skarsgard has emerged as the frontrunner to star in Tarzan.
Earlier this year, Disney attempted to make a big blockbuster following John Carter, the Edgar Rice Burroughs hero who has influenced science-fiction stories for a century. The result was not a commercial success, but Carter isn't exactly a household name, and Warner Bros. is proceeding with a movie for a far more well-known Burroughs creation: Tarzan.
Now, it looks like the studio has found a director to bring the Ape Man back to life in live-action: David Yates.
Just how much does the movie industry like awards? So much so that lists must be compiled of favorite movies that don't actually exist. That's not exactly true, but we're talking about the Black List, an annual compilation of the finest unproduced screenplays of the year (not a McCarthyist list of suspected Communists whose lives are now ruined). To put it in perspective, the 2008 list included both 50/50 and The Descendants. The seventh list was released today by Black List founder Franklin Leonard, and it's topped by The Imitation Game, a biopic of Alan Turing, the mathematician who developing the Turing Test and had a strange, strange existence. That film will probably get made at Warner Bros, possibly with David Yates directing.
The West Coast is finally going to get punch drunk on Butterbeer. Warner Bros and Universal Studios have formally announced that The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, the theme park attraction which has been doing gangbusters business in Orlando, Florida, will be getting a counterpart at Universal Studios in Hollywood. That's right, just because the theatrical franchise concluded with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 doesn't mean that JK Rowling's world of the Boy Who Lived can't continue to be a cash cow with golden teats. Not only will Hogwarts and Hogsmeade show in Los Angeles, but the original location is also set for an expansion. The space previously occupied by the Jaws Amity Island attraction at Universal Studios Orlando will soon be home to Harry Potter's London, Diagon Alley, and The Hogwarts Express.
The British series Doctor Who is probably more popular than ever before, moving beyond sci-fi die hards into the pop cultural mainstream, even here in America, where it was previously relegated to niche nerd property. The series follows a hyper intelligent alien in different human forms, a Time Lord who travels through space and time in the TARDIS, an old-fashioned police box with a deceptively roomy interior, and the BBC has made several attempts to get the good doctor his own big screen feature, but it looks as though a new cinematic Doctor Who, separated from the series' continuity, is in development under the watchful eye of David Yates, fresh off his tenure on the Harry Potter franchise.
Prior to Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix in 2007, British director David Yates had never made a big international blockbuster, but with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 having come and gone, Yates has been responsible for half of the films in the biggest franchise of all time. After four consecutive Potter adventures, his next project is a big question mark. Back in August, he and Potter franchise screenwriter* Steve Kloves were reportedly in talks with Warner Bros, which distributed the Potter films, to direct and write, respectively, The Stand, an adaptation of Stephen King's massive apocalyptic tale. Then, in October, it was revealed that the studio wanted Ben Affleck to take on the huge property. So what happened with Yates? Apparently he and Kloves voluntarily opted out of The Stand, and he's now explained for the first time just why.
A new 35-second "For Your Consideration" trailer for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 makes it absolutely clear that Warner Bros would very much like to win a few awards for the Boy Wizard's final adventure, and they've got an Oscar campaign up and running to make that happen. Since its release over the summer, the final adaptation of JK Rowling's phenomenally popular novel series has grossed well over a billion dollars globally, earning accolades from critics and audiences while cementing Harry Potter as the biggest franchise of all time (not adjusted for inflation, of course). A Best Picture nomination and a few acting nods would no doubt make for a big-ass peacock feather in that already stylish cap.
The release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 on Blu-ray and DVD is just around the corner on November 11th. With its release, fans will finally be able to own all eight films adapting the novel series by JK Rowling, and in time for the holiday season, no less. When Warner Bros first announced the Blu-ray release date over a month ago, the press release included the news that, as of December 29, 2011, the studio would cease shipping not only Deathly Hallows, but all eight films, from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone on back. Though the news has been floating around for over a month, Warner Bros has reiterated that its serious: the Harry Potter franchise will disappear from Blu-ray and DVD for an unspecified amount of time at the end of this year.
With recognizable properties at an all-time premium amongst movie studios, it is in no way surprising that Warner Bros is looking to get a new theatrical The Twilight Zone up and running. The would be revival of Rod Serling's classic television series that ran from 1959 to 1964 and featured fiercely intelligent, top-notch storytelling that often ended with a surprising conclusion upending the audience's notions of everything that preceded it. For the new would-be movie, Warner Bros has sight their sights pretty high, as their wishlist for a potential The Twilight Zone director includes Christopher Nolan, Alfonso Cuaran, Rupert Wyatt, and Michael Bay.