The Happytime Murders has been in the works since 2008, with STX Entertainment stepping in last summer to put Brian Henson’s R-rated puppet crime movie back in development. It’s been several months since the last update on the long-gestating project, but it looks as though things are finally picking up, as Jamie Foxx is in talks to star in the film — but is he a man, or is he a puppet?
Take the comedic talents of Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key, add an intensely adorable kitten, the musical stylings of George Michael, and a riff on John Wick, and you get Keanu — an action comedy that is mostly enjoyable, until it stretches its premise a little too thin and falls victim to the narrative demands of a feature-length film. Perhaps fittingly enough, Key and Peele’s first film outing is at its most lively when the titular kitten is on screen. Remove the kitten from the equation and you have a film that adheres a little too closely to the action flick formula it seeks to emulate, particularly during the lengthy third act.
Disney is really doubling down on its growing live-action reboot / remake empire, claiming five more release dates for its upcoming projects and officially confirming several previously reported films, including The Jungle Book 2, Maleficent 2, Tim Burton’s Dumbo and more. The studio now has a total of seven release dates set for various live-action projects, and though they have yet to formally attach specific titles to these dates, reports suggest that at least one of the new dates belongs to The Jungle Book sequel.
With the endless stream of reboots and re-adaptations and remakes and reimaginings and re-whatever-other-word-we’re-using-now (revivals!), news like this becomes inevitable. Chances are, if you even vaguely recall a classic television show, it’s going to come back, and the best you can hope for is something like 21 Jump Street. At worst? It will cinematically haunt your soul, revealing the true insidious nature of your nostalgia like no horror you have ever known before. And with that Herzog-ian thought, we move onto today’s news: New Line is developing a movie based on Three’s Company.
This week Amazon launched its standalone Instant Video streaming plan (a whole dollar cheaper than Netflix's monthly fee), which should entice those of you who put off by Amazon Prime's annual fees. If you need further convincing, there's plenty of great new content coming to the service next month, like HBO favorites Mr. Show With Bob and David and Boardwalk Empire, and lots of films both old and new. Read on for our guide to what's hitting Amazon Prime Instant Video in May.
By now you have the release date for Captain America: Civil War tattooed on your brain, but — shocker! — there are other movies hitting theaters next month, believe it or not. In addition to Marvel's latest, we also have a new film from Shane Black, the sequel to Neighbors and, lest you forget, X-Men: Apocalypse. There's plenty more in our guide to May's new movie releases.
Three days before Deadpool even hit theaters, word got around that Fox was already developing a sequel with screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick returning. Since then we’ve heard a lot about what to expect from the sequel (Cable, mostly) despite the fact that Fox had yet to make an official announcement. That changed today at CinemaCon, of course, where the studio made it all very officially official, confirming the return of both Ryan Reynolds and director Tim Miller for Deadpool 2.
One of Disney’s more curious live-action updates is their upcoming Winnie the Pooh film, scripted by Queen of Earth director Alex Ross Perry. In addition to that film, Fox Searchlight has a Hundred Acre Wood-adjacent project in the works exploring the life of Pooh creator and author A.A. Milne, giving audiences a chance to get to know the man who brought everyone’s favorite chubby little cubby all stuffed with fluff to life.
Yes, we’re getting another adaptation of Dr. Seuss’ holiday classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas, but like the better of the two previous versions, this one will be animated, the way the good cinema lords intended. And in another bit of optimistic news, Benedict Cumberbatch will lend his voice to the title character, a greedy, mean old grinch who has a very valuable lesson to learn about Christmas spirit.
Surprise! (Not really.) Disney is developing yet another live-action remake of one of their classic animated properties, this time setting their sights on Peter Pan — which sort of feels like a real shots-fired situation following the failure of Joe Wright’s Pan over at Warner Bros. David Lowery, who recently helmed the Pete’s Dragon remake for Disney, has been tapped to direct and script a new live-action Peter Pan movie.
Disney must feel pretty confident about The Jungle Book — Jon Favreau’s live-action / CGI retelling hits theaters on April 15, but early word-of-mouth is largely positive. And given Disney’s recent proven track record with live-action remakes of their popular classics, it sure does seem like The Jungle Book is on track to perform well at the box office. Just how well remains to be seen, but the studio is already developing a sequel with Favreau in talks to return.
Bill & Ted 3 has been in the works for years, and while that prolonged development time isn’t any worse than, say, waiting for a new Pixar sequel, keep in mind that it’s been 25 years since Bill S. Preston, Esquire and Ted Theodore Logan last graced the big screen. Over the last few years, both Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter have assured fans that they’re very much committed to making the sequel once they’ve perfected the script and budget (and cleared their respective schedules). The latest update comes from Winter, who says the duo could reunite later this year or early next year to film Bill & Ted 3 — which definitely sounds like progress, but don’t start holding your breath just yet.
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