In the wake of this weekend’s successful opening of the ‘real Navy SEALs’ movie Act of Valor, expect to see other similar movies go into action. While we wait to hear that Kathryn Bigelow is actually rolling on her movie about the SEAL Team 6 hunt for Osama Bin Laden, we’ve got word of another Naval special-ops adventure.

Over the past couple years Universal has developed Lone Survivor, based on the memoir of the same name by Marcus Luttrell. The author was one member of a SEAL team ambushed in Afghanistan, and the book tells of the team’s struggle to survive.

Peter Berg has been part of the project since the beginning, and now it looks like Berg will direct the film this fall as his follow-up to Battleship. He’s got Mark Wahlberg in talks to play Marcus Luttrell, and Ben Foster in talks to join Taylor Kitsch as other men on Luttrell’s team. Read More »

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With exactly ten days left until the opening of John Carter, Disney has released what I’m assuming is the final trailer for the film. And while I haven’t loved all of the previous marketing, it appears the team has learned from its mistakes because this is probably the best one they’ve released so far. The new trailer is heavier on menacing Mark Strong, eye-popping action, and plot, and lighter on Taylor Kitsch‘s stilted readings of generic dialogue. Watch the video after the jump.

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Last year, before The Dark Knight Rises had fully shot, there was a lot of speculation about what Christian Bale would do after his tenure as Batman ended. Turns out he planned a couple films with Terrence Malick, but another project that was mentioned as a possible one for Bale has reared its head once more.

We’d heard that Scott Cooper, who directed Crazy Heart, was courting Bale last year to star in The Low Dweller, a revenge drama that Brad Ingelsby wrote and Cooper had latched on to as director. Cooper was also rewriting, and the project got a new title: Out of the Furnace. Bale had fallen away from the project late last year, but now he’s back in talks to take the lead role. Read More »

We’ve seen what seems like a fair amount of footage from John Carter already, between its various teasers, trailers and TV spots, but today we’ve got a somewhat longer two-and-a-half minute clip to show you — plus another two minutes from a new sizzle reel. The scene sees the titular hero (Taylor Kitsch) and Tars Tarkas (Willem Dafoe) battling white apes in a huge arena, while the reel that includes some new bits we haven’t seen yet. Check it out after the jump.

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John Carter hasn’t even been released yet, but a lot of early talk has already focused on potential sequels. Which makes a certain sort of sense. The film, directed by Andrew Stanton, is based on the first in a huge series of books by Edgar Rice Burroughs. While this film serves as an origin, once that’s established the real fun can begin. (See Spider-Man 2, The Dark Knight, The Empire Strikes Back, etc.)

However, Stanton and his team have been working on this film for almost six years and though he’s started outlining the potential sequel, nothing is set in stone. Will Stanton direct? Does he want to? Will Disney pony up the cash? Can John Carter make enough money to warrant such an expenditure?

In a recent interview I conducted with Taylor Kitsch, aka John Carter on screen, he flat-out said he wouldn’t do a sequel unless Stanton directs. I’m sure the Disney lawyers might say otherwise but you can read his quote, and Stanton’s response, after the jump. Read More »

Disney’s John Carter has had a rough go of it on the marketing front — a tracking report leaked last week showed “shockingly” low public interest in the film, and you don’t need statistics to know that the trailers and teasers so far have been kind of a mess. Such a mess, in fact, that one particularly devoted fan was able to create the movie’s best trailer yet using clips that had already been released.

But their latest tactic actually seems like a clever way of attracting the attention of the cool-geek crowd. The studio has teamed up with Mondo for a gorgeous new poster, which will be handed out for free to moviegoers who attend the midnight IMAX screening of Andrew Stanton‘s sci-fi adventure when it opens on March 9. Check out the full image after the jump.

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This may or may not be good news, depending on whether or not you think the Friday Night Lights television series finale was the best possible end to the show’s story. Just as the finale was about to air, we heard that the show could find new life on the big screen, and a short time later producer Peter Berg confirmed the development of a film featuring the series’ characters.

During a recent event for Battleship, the film he directed for a summer release this year, Berg gave a fairly substantial status update on the FNL film project. The script is coming together, he says, and one plotline will be based in part on former Texas Tech football coach Mike Leach. Read More »

/Film Visits The Set of ‘John Carter’

I visited Mars almost two years ago. It was April 2010 and the film set was in the middle of nowhere. Finding Nemo/WALL-E director Andrew Stanton was making his live-action debut John Carter, a big screen adaptation of Edgar Rice Burroughs‘s novel A Princess of Mars. There had been many failed attempts to bring the material to the big screen, but somehow Stanton was able to convince the studio heads to let him be the one to make the adaptation at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars.

Disney flew a group of journalists into the Las Vegas airport, where we boarded a shuttle bus to a location five hours away. A location so far away that we were no longer in Nevada. Located at the center of the Grand Circle, Big Water Utah has a population of only 417 people (which probably explains why you didn’t see many John Carter set photos). The set was located out in the middle of a desert.

You wouldn’t have any idea a big Hollywood production was being shot in town, aside from small yellow signs that read “BARSOOM” which help crew members find the small dirt road which leads to the set. And by set, I mean a few structures which have been constructed on the grey dirt in the middle of these large brown hills made of sandstone. Barsoom, of course, is what the Martians in the books call their home planet.

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