Julian Assange is Australian, and his former right-hand man Daniel Domscheit-Berg is German, but it seems both will be portrayed by UK citizens in the movies. Bill Condon‘s developing WikiLeaks movie cast white-hot Sherlock actor Benedict Cumberbatch as WikiLeaks founder Assange last month, and now James McAvoy looks likely to take the role of disillusioned WikiLeaks spokesperson Domscheit-Berg.

The film is based on two books, Domscheit-Berg’s tell-all Inside WikiLeaks: My Time With Julian Assange At The World’s Most Dangerous Website and journalists David Leigh and Luke Harding‘s WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange’s War On Secrecy. More after the jump.

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As Christopher Nolan‘s longtime cinematographer Wally Pfister prepares his directorial debut, he’s looking to join forces with another Nolan favorite. Christian Bale is said to be on Pfister’s radar for Transcendence, potentially joining rumored stars Johnny Depp, Noomi Rapace, Christoph Waltz, and others. If those names actually pan out, Pfister could end up with a star-studded ensemble to rival any of Nolan’s. Read more after the jump.

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For a few months we’ve known that Wally Pfister, the cinematographer who has shot all of Christopher Nolan‘s major work from Memento on, would be making his directorial debut with a top-secret film. We’ve known that Nolan and Emma Thomas are producing, and Pfister said not long ago that “it’s a present-day science fiction film, a fairly big concept. It’s bigger budget — not as big as “Batman,” but not independent.”

Other than those tidbits we’ve known nothing, not even a title. Now we know the film is called Transcendence, and that Johhny Depp is in talks to star.

Edit: While the original news break called the film “Transendence,” as originally spelled here, it appears that was wrong, and the title uses the standard spelling Transcendence.

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Universal’s been taking their good sweet time on the sequel to 2008′s Wanted, but fans needn’t fret just yet. The studio (re)hired Derek Haas and Michael Brandt to write the script last year, and the former now says they’re readying the second draft.

As for big changes from the last film, Haas reveals the unsurprising news that Angelina Jolie will not reprise her role as Fox. Instead, Wesley (James McAvoy) will be hanging out with a new female pal. Read more after the jump.

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Let’s do a little update on Mark Millar movies. First up, while we were doubtful for months about the chances of Kick-Ass 2 actually shooting and bringing the cast of the original film back together, turns out we were too pessimistic. Looks like the film will in fact go before cameras this year, with Jeff Wadlow directing and most of the original cast returning.

After the break, Kick-Ass star Aaron Johnson provides a little update on the film. Then Timur Bekmambetov has a couple things to say about the sequel to Wanted, another film based on a Mark Millar comic. Read More »

When last we checked in with the film adaptation of Irvine Welsh‘s novel Filth, which is being directed by Jon S. Baird, the days were still long and warm. That August update revealed that the film about an evil Edinburgh cop would feature James McAvoy, Jamie Bell and Alan Cumming in the key roles.

The film is about to shoot, with a start date set for next week, and it has added a few people. Jim Broadbent, Eddie Marsan, Joanne Froggatt and Imogen Poots are on board now, all of which is good news. But it seems like Alan Cumming might have fallen away. More details on that below. Read More »

Aardman Animation’s Arthur Christmas opens with a scene that suggests it is not your parents’ holiday movie. In response to one little girl’s query about how Santa manages to deliver all of those gifts around the world in just one night, we’re treated to a thrilling sequence of hundreds of elves jumping out of a giant sleigh-shaped spaceship and delivering the gifts with a high-tech precision that wouldn’t be out of place in a futuristic action thriller.

Spearheading that massive operation is alpha-male Steve (Hugh Laurie), heir apparent to the cushy Santa position currently held by his father Malcolm (Jim Broadbent). Steve and Malcolm, it turns out, are just two members of a long line of Santas that stretch back centuries and also includes Malcolm’s father (Bill Nighy) “Grandsanta,” and Steve’s younger brother Arthur (James McAvoy).

But holiday movies are a decidedly traditional genre, and Arthur Christmas quickly falls into the familiar themes about the magic of Christmas and finding your place in the world and whatnot. Happily, it does so with enough wit and enough feeling to be a cut above some of the more cynical entries in the genre, though it’s not on the level of the best holiday classics.

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What does James McAvoy have to say about a sequel to X-Men: First Class? Did Michael Shannon reveal any General Zod details from Man of Steel? Want to hear what Rhys Ifans‘ The Lizard might sound like in The Amazing Spider-Man? Can we finally put the question of Captain America 2‘s timeline to bed? How can you win a trip to the Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance world premiere? Read about this and much more in today’s Superhero Bits. Read More »

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