As most of you know, I don’t do a lot of regurgitation of entertainment news. I try to bring my own brand of news to you on a local level as opposed to what I read on the interwebs that doesn’t much pertain to us here. Interviews and reviews that we all can get into. Well while doing my daily entertainment news checking for stuff on a local level I came across to National stories that I’m giddy with excitement for. Two things that I have fallen in love with one since before I can remember and one from the last few years are going to be once again gracing the big screen and the small screen respectively.
First up the announcement I read this morning from Warner Bros., Legendary Pictures and Toho Studios that my all time favorite monster of the silver screen is coming back to theatres in 2012! So those of you in the know recognize Toho Studios and you should know by now that that means… GODZILLA! Here’s the news release I read this morning:
Legendary Pictures announced today they are ready to start developing a new movie based on the legendary Toho Studios monster Godzilla, having acquired the rights to the character Toho created over fifty years ago in the 1954 film, which has since become a genre classic. Legendary is producing the movie through their deal with Warner Bros. with hopes to announce a director soon to helm the movie with the intention of having it ready for a 2012 release.
Toho has kept Godzilla alive through two generations of movies, many of which were only released in Japan. The last time Godzilla arrived on these shores, it was for a 50th Anniversary re-release of the original movie. Before that, Toho released one of the Japanese films in the United States as Godzilla 2000, and in 1998, director Roland Emmerich and his partner Dean Devlin tackled a reinvention of Godzilla for Sony, a summer blockbuster that grossed $379 million worldwide despite generally tepid reviews and disfavor from the long-time fans of the character.
The official press release from Legendary includes quotes from the three key players in the deal.
Thomas Tull, Chairman and CEO of Legendary:
“Godzilla is one of the world’s most powerful pop culture icons, and we at Legendary are thrilled to be able to create a modern epic based on this long-loved Toho franchise. Our plans are to produce the Godzilla that we, as fans, would want to see. We intend to do justice to those essential elements that have allowed this character to remain as pop-culturally relevant for as long as it has.”
Hideyuki Takai, President of Toho Co., Ltd.:
“Godzilla is a signature Japanese character which we have nurtured over the years. It is a great honor to reach an agreement with Legendary Pictures, the parent to many a blockbuster film, and we are delighted in rebooting the character together to realize its much anticipated return by fans from all over the world. We are anxious to find out where Godzilla’s new stomping will take us.”
Jeff Robinov, President, Warner Bros. Pictures Group:
“Godzilla is emblematic of the kind of branded, event films for which Warner Bros. and our partners at Legendary are best known. We have enjoyed a great deal of success together to date and this newest opportunity represents yet another chance for us to collaborate on a property that is very clearly in their wheelhouse.”
Source: Coming Soon
Since I can remember I have been a Godzilla fanatic. I even had that awesome Godzilla toy in the late 70′s early 80′s with the shooting fists! I’m really hoping they can do the big guy justice since Roland Emmerich did such a terrible job with it in the 90′s. Even the soundtrack was a real bummer. If anyone has seen the Godzilla’s made in Japan in the 2000′s you know that Godzilla can be done in a modern age and done REALLY well with good stories and great use of rubber, models and CGI! I’m also excited to see a studio like Legendary getting on board with this. I’ve been impressed with their output and I think they have the right team to make this happen. I would love Godzilla to remain an icon long into my children’s lives as well!
The second piece of news to cross my desk this morning and amp up my nerd quotient to 11 is the announcement that AMC has greenlit Frank Darabont’s adaptation of one of the best ongoing comic book series of ALL TIME; The Walking Dead. If you haven’t read this comic book you are missing out, it is hands down the best comic in print today (which reminds me Rob I think we need to add The Walking Dead to my pull list buddy!). Here is the news I read this morning:
AMC announced today it has greenlit “The Walking Dead” as a six-episode series based on the comic book series written by Robert Kirkman and published by Image Comics. Kirkman serves as an executive producer on the project and three-time Academy Award-nominee Frank Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile) serves as writer, director and executive producer. Gale Anne Hurd (The Terminator, Aliens, Armageddon, The Incredible Hulk), chairman of Valhalla Motion Pictures, serves as Executive Producer. David Alpert from Circle of Confusion serves as Executive Producer. Today’s announcement also includes the addition of Charles “Chic” Eglee (“Dexter,” “The Shield,” “Dark Angel”) as Executive Producer, and actor Jon Bernthal (“The Pacific,” The Ghost Writer) who will portray the character Shane.
“The Walking Dead” begins production in June in Atlanta with six, one-hour episodes for season one. The series is set to premiere in October 2010 during AMC’s Fearfest, the network’s annual blockbuster marathon of thriller and horror films. Fearfest (formerly known as MonsterFest) is celebrating its 14th year by airing 14 consecutive days of themed programming with more than 50 films. AMC announced development of “The Walking Dead” in August 2009 and announced the pilot in January of this year.
“AMC strives to make original shows that play like movies and ‘The Walking Dead’ is a perfect complement to the network’s celebrated movie franchise, Fearfest, which has always been an important destination for our audience,” said Charlie Collier, AMC President. “With its depth of story and the remarkable talent attached, ‘The Walking Dead’ gives us an opportunity to raise the bar significantly within this popular genre, and continue our commitment to being the home of premium programming on basic cable.”
“‘The Walking Dead’ is that rare piece of material that plays on many levels,” says Joel Stillerman, Senior Vice President of Programming, Production and Digital Content. “Kirkman’s series brilliantly captures the social commentary and ongoing human drama of the zombie apocalypse; and let’s us kick a little zombie you-know-what from time to time.”
“The Walking Dead” tells the story of the months and years that follow after a zombie apocalypse. It follows a group of survivors, led by police officer Rick Grimes, who travel in search of a safe and secure home. The comic goes on to explore the challenges of life in a world overrun by zombies who take a toll on the survivors, and sometimes the interpersonal conflicts present a greater danger to their continuing survival than the zombies that roam the country. Over time, the characters are changed by the constant exposure to death and some grow willing to do anything to survive.
AMC’s Joel Stillerman, senior vice president of original programming, production and digital content, Susie Fitzgerald, senior vice president scripted development and current programming, and Vlad Wolynetz, vice president of production, series and movies, oversee the development and production of the new drama.
Source: Coming Soon
Seriously folks, if you haven’t read The Walking Dead, run don’t walk to your nearest comic retailer and start getting them now. They are easily the best written comics out there. With emotional human stories of life, death, love, struggles and relationships made even more difficult in a world over run with zombies. In all honesty the zombie story which seems like the central antagonist of the story really is only the spring board to catapult our beloved survivors into a world of human relationships and the extremes of our society. The BEST COMIC GOING!
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This post was written by Gabe Wilkinson on March 30, 2010