King of Kong director Seth Gordon has signed on to direct Suicide Squad for Working Title Films and Universal Pictures. According to THR, the story follows a desperate con man, out on parole, who recruits a crew of amateur criminals to rip off the Kentucky Derby. Sounds kinda like if Oceans Eleven was made up of a team of losers and never-have-beens. Brother screenwriting team Matt and Billy Eddy penned the latest draft, based on an original script by Chris Johnson. Gordon makes his fictional feature film debut with the Reese Witherspoon/Vince Vaughn romantic comedy Four Christmases.
Meanwhile, our friends at FirstShowing were able to catch up with Gordon at the Four Christmases junket, and got an update on New Line’s fictional remake of The King of Kong. Last we heard, Scott Pilgrim screenwriter Michael Bacall was hired to pen the script. Gordon says that the remake will “be less of the talking heads” and will show moments they weren’t able to film in the process of making the documentary.
“But in terms of the story, it’s going to be a very similar story – about Wiebe losing his job, rediscovering Kong, thinking he’s the best in the world at something only to have it taken away by a guy who won’t let go of his title,” Gordon told FS. “We’re going to try, if we can, to really reference and use the documentary where possible. To me it’s about not compromising the original, if we can help it.”
New Line supposedly has “a really strong, aggressive commitment to it” and Gordon expects it to go into production “pretty soon”. But from the sound of the Suicide Squad announcement, probably not soon enough.
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We’ll take this sentence to offer the ongoing meme for Showbiz Pizza‘s house band an extended welcome and a thanks for making so many parents’ divorces and kids’ birthday parties that much more awkward, wacky and bipolar. This forthcoming documentary shines a light on the magic inner workings and fandom of The Rock-afire Explosion, the animatronic musical act and variety show that was a loud staple at Showbiz Pizza franchises in the ’80s.
From indie, Window Pictures, the flick centers on a 31-year-old Alabamian enviously named, Chris Thrash, who fulfilled his lifelong dream of purchasing and programming the band of robotic “artificial life forms.” Thrash now has the good fortune of being declared, “King of The Rock-afire Explosion World!” by a tan man in this trailer who wears exceedingly retro-patterned attire. Also, the Internetz already loves him: Thrash is on his way towards obtaining an invite to next year’s ROFLCon due to the popularity/badassness of his Rock-afire cover song requests, most recently Usher’s “Love in the Club.” Rock-afire also cameos in this obnoxious MGMT hipster dance off.
With its ominous suburban crime scene muzak, arcade montages, cheesy commercials (pun lalala) and telling geek confessions, the trailer will remind many of The King of Kong and Chasing Ghosts; and I really hope the hot lass seen here in a green shirt is an ’08 Rock-afire Explosion groupie. I will convert Slashfilm dollars, stalk in van and feed her bad pizza. When I was 4-feet-tall and wearing $200 Nike Pump hi-tops, if a stranger had informed me that adulthood would bring this wistful doc and The Two Coreys, I would have worn more black. But hey, times change! I now attribute these semi-customized entertainments to a lucky taxidermy collection.
[flv:http://bitcast-a.bitgravity.com/slashfilm/trailers/rockafire.flv 320 240]
The Rock-afire Explosion opens Fall 2008.
Discuss: Wouldn’t the catchphrase currently seen/loathed on Domino’s Pizza’s boxes for The Dark Knight—“Cloaked in Pepperoni, Deliciously Mysterious”—be better utlized for The Rock-afire Explosion?
The Pitch: In the future Steve Wiebe sets an unbeatable Donkey Kong World Record. Billy Mitchell sends a cybernetic version of himself to the past to kill Wiebe before he breaks the record.
Thanks to Jonny for passing this along.
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SplitReason has a cool new video game t-shirt which parodies the iconic image of King Kong on the Empire State Building. Instead of it being King Kong, it appears that Donkey Kong has escaped the elevator stage which is hidden inside that big skyscraper. Steve Wiebe must have somehow made it past the kill screen. Don’t worry Mario will save you the Princess, and Link is shooting arrows from the ground. But whose side is Bowser on?
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On Wednesday we told you that Steve Wiebe, noted Donkey Kong competitor and star of the 2007 documentary The King of Kong, was going to attempt to set the Donkey Kong World Record at Microsoft’s MIX08 event tonight in Las Vegas, with referee Walter Day in attendance. Many readers have commented and e-mailed me asking if Wiebe was able to defeat champion Billy Mitchell‘s score of 1,050,200 points. A few minutes ago we received the following unsolicited e-mail:
“Steve scored approx. 929,000 and reached the kill screen I believe… Great effort… Thanks, Billy Mitchell”
That’s right, THAT Billy Mitchell e-mailed us to brag that he is still the record holder. I’m sure anyone who has seen the fantastic documentary has something to say about this…
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Update: Did Steve Wiebe Reclaim His Title as The King of Kong?
/Film reader Joseph D sent word that Steve Wiebe, noted Donkey Kong competitor and star of the 2007 documentary The King of Kong, will attempt to set the Donkey Kong World Record later today at Microsoft’s MIX08 event tonight in Las Vegas, with referee Walter Day in attendance.
Video game champion Billy Mitchell beat Wiebe’s record in June of 2007, and currently is ranked #1 with 1,050,200 points to Steve’s 1,049,100 points (only 1,100 points separating them). The event takes place during Microsoft’s TAO NIGHTCLUB PARTY from 6:00pm to10:00pm in The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino.
/Film wishes Steve Wiebe good luck.
Picturehouse has released the theatrical movie trailer for The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters (poster). I, like many of you, grew up during the last few years of the so called Arcade revolution. Kids flocked to the local bowling alley or video arcade to play the latest and greatest video game machines. At Sundance we saw a great film on this era, and more specifically, the champions of this era, called Chasing Ghosts. Well it looks like The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters might be even better, video game champion turned hot sauce mogul as he must defend his title as Donkey Cong champion against a middle school teacher. This movie has everything that is needed to become the next geek cult classic. New Line has already greenlit a feature film adaptation based on this true story.
Check out the trailer after the jump. The movie hits theaters on August 17th 2007.
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One of the documentaries we really dug at this year’s Sundance Film Festival was Chasing Ghosts, about the masters of Pac-Man. It was a great trip back to the arcade era of the 1970’s and 1980’s. Well, Picturehouse has picked up a similar documentary (which even includes some of the same characters), which New Line has already purchased the rights to adapt into a feature film.
The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters follows a middle school science teacher as he struggles to win the Guinness World Record for the arcade classic Donkey Kong.
The film hits theaters on August 17th, and now we have a poster. Click on the image to the right to enlarge.
The 2007 South By South West Film Festival is in full force, and we have a round-up of the early buzz:
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