Sequel Bits: First Look At Amber Heard In 'Machete Kills,' Plus More 'Alex Cross,' Trouble On 'Mad Max: Fury Road,' And 'Pirates 5,' 'Sex And The City 3'

The image you see above is the first look at Amber Heard as she appears in the Robert Rodriguez film Machete Kills. The movie is, as you likely know, the sequel to 2009's Machete, which was itself an expansion of the very entertaining "fake" trailer that appeared in the Rodriguez/Tarantino effort Grindhouse.

After the break, we've got more info on Machete Kills, as well as:

  • Tyler Perry will get another film as Alex Cross,
  • Warner Bros. sends a new corporate overseer down to keep tabs on Mad Max: Fury Road,
  • Keith Richards is ready for Pirates of the Caribbean 5,
  • and, in news that totally fits with everything mentioned above, Cynthia Nixon doesn't want to do more Sex and the City.
  • The photo above comes along with the news that Machete Kills has been picked up for distribution by Open Road for release in 2013.

    In this chapter, Machete is "recruited by the president of the United States for a mission which would be impossible for any mortal man: He must take down a madman revolutionary and an eccentric billionaire arms dealer who has hatched a plan to spread war and anarchy across the planet." The film also features Michelle Rodriguez, Sofia Vergara, Charlie Sheen, Lady Gaga, Antonio Banderas, Jessica Alba, Demian Bichir, Alexa Vega, Vanessa Hudgens, Cuba Gooding Jr., William Sadler, Marko Zaror and Mel Gibson. [THR]

    Alex Cross is getting savaged in reviews, but James Patterson's long-running character has quite a fan base, and so does Tyler Perry, the actor who plays him in this incarnation. And so Perry and Patteron are already in talks with financier QED to turn the novel Double Cross into another "Perry as Cross" movie.

    Whether current director Rob Cohen will return isn't yet reported, so there's room to surmise that Perry might end up directing the second film as well as starring in it. What a strange world. Double Cross, for what its worth, has a plot that goes like this:

    Just when Alex thought his life was calming down into a routine of patients and therapy sessions, he finds himself back in the game–this time to catch a criminal mastermind like no other. A spate of elaborate murders in Washington D.C. have the whole East Coast on edge. They are like nothing Alex Cross and his new girlfriend, Detective Brianna Stone, have ever seen. With each murder, the case becomes increasingly complex. There's only one thing Alex knows: the killer adores an audience. As victims are made into gruesome spectacles citywide, inducing a media hysteria, it becomes clear to Alex that the man he's after is a genius of terror–and he's after fame. The killer has the whole city by its strings–and he'll stop at nothing to become the most terrifying star that Washington D.C. has ever seen.


    It's difficult to tell just how much of an issue this next news bit really represents. Production on George Miller's Mad Max: Fury Road has reportedly gone over budget and fallen as much as five days behind schedule.Warner Bros. chief Jeff Robinov headed down to Namibia to check things out, and ended up sending experienced producer Denise DiNovi to hang out on set as a studio overseer. The idea is generally to keep tabs on things and make sure the production gets back on track and stays there.

    The return of Mad Max has already faced a series of delays, so this is just one more thing to add to the list of things small and large that have plagued the production. But films fall behind schedule on a fairly regular basis, and the idea of a studio sending someone down to make sure the ship sails straight isn't unusual at all. (There's a reason the "bond company stooge" was such a good joke in The Life Aquatic — that guy is a semi-regular on set.) Furthermore, making an action-heavy film like those in the Mad Max series isn't the sort of thing that is always going to go like clockwork.

    So, while this is attention-getting stuff, is it really that big a deal? Hard to say right now, but there's a good chance it isn't. We'll know when the film hits; if Fury Road works, everyone involved will shrug and say the trials and tribulations were all worth it. [THR]

    In the video below, Keith Richards discusses a wide range of topics that have to do with his career as the least-likely Rolling Stone to remain standing in 2012. Towards the end, however, he talks about getting back into costume for a fifth Pirates of the Caribbean film. If only Johnny Depp would give him a call.

    Here are the specific Pirates comments:

    So they say, you know, I've got the costume, and I'm waiting for [laughter] the heads up, but apparently there is.  I don't know if it'll be next year that we shoot it or whatever, but as I say, you know, I got the costume and the beard and the [laughter] shirt, and I'll wait for a call from Johnny.

    Finally, while I know you've been dying to see a third Sex and the City film, it's time to steel yourself for the difficult truth. Cynthia Nixon, ak Miranda, may turn out to be the Sex and the City version of Bill Murray, as she doesn't see a reason to go back to the well. Asked by THR about making a third film, she replied, "No, no. I think we had a wonderful ride. I think it's fine to let it go."

    That's despite Sarah Jessica Parker saying last year that she's got a "small story" in mind that she's ready to tell. Sorry about that.