Sin City: A Dame To Kill For Casts Its Evil Mastermind

It appears that this fall's film follow-up, Sin City: A Dame To Kill For has another formidable finagler to add to its ever-growing ensemble. Actor, Stacy Keach has been tapped to take the role of Wallenquist, aka "The Kraut."

Describing the character, the original comic creator and film's co-director, Frank Miller referred to Wallenquist as "the one man who can't be redeemed in Sin City. He is pure evil." While confirmed details about the film, based on Miller's original graphic novel of the same name were sporadic, it did seem likely to feature the rapacious racketeer, who, while rarely seen, maintains a presence throughout the various Sin City stories. Now, the on-screen representation of this pernicious puppet master behind most of Sin City's major marks of malfeasance will, ironically enough, be portrayed by Keach, an actor famously known for playing a heroic detective on television as Mike Hammer.

Likely to carry a German accent, Keach's Wallenquist will probably have his tentacles in most, if not all of the stories in this film. It also appears likely that he will be the main antagonist in an original story entitled "The Long Bad Night" in which a cocky gambler named Johnny, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, takes his swindling act a bit too far. According to co-director, Robert Rodriguez in a recent interview with MTV, the hopeless huckster "tries to beat the biggest villain in Sin City at his own game." So, Johnny's life is pretty much going to suck from that point on and it won't just be a dream within a dream.

With the gorgeous Eva Green recently cast as the film's sinister seductress, Ava Lord and now Keach as Wallenquist, it appears that Sin City: A Dame To Kill For will have no shortage of villains who are sure to be memorable for much different reasons when it hits theaters on October 4.


Star Wars To Spinoff With Yoda Solo Film?

According to Aint It Cool News, Yoda, the ancient, wise, and backward-speaking Jedi Master of Star Wars is heading back to the big screen. -- Whoa, hold on a second, NOT for the upcoming J.J. Abrams-directed Episode VII, but rather, for what would prospectively be the first Star Wars stand alone film.

Indeed, fans knew that last fall's acquisition of Lucasfilm by Disney would be the catalyst for some changes, but when rumors started to swirl about the possibility of spinoff films set in the Star Wars Universe, it was clear that we could be looking at a radical change in approach to how this movie canon manifested. Once previously held onto tightly by George Lucas, the proverbial Pandora's Box has been opened.

At this point, no details are available on exactly when in Yoda's long, long life the film is set to take place. There are numerous possibilities ranging from the story of a young Yoda getting his first lessons in the Jedi arts, to a bittersweet tale of how Yoda's apprentice, Count Dooku descended to the Dark Side, or even a post-Jedi Purge story documenting events taking place in Yoda's early days exiled on the "slimy mudhole" of Dagobah. There may even be some strategy to make the film more relevant to the new material by basing it on a storyline that will ultimately connect with the Abrams-christened sequel films.

Should the report prove true, it sets things up for other popular characters to get their own solo outings on the big screen like Boba Fett, Darth Maul, Jabba The Hutt...or maybe even the Rebellion's portly pilot, Jek Porkins. (jk) -- It's a Star Wars universe, we're just pretending to live in it.


Marvel's Phase Three: Where Does Hulk End Up?

According to a report from Latino Review, it appears that The Avengers' irascible, irradiated emerald brute could find himself the center of some major activity by the time Marvel's Movie Universe reaches its "Phase Three" era.

While Marvel has tried its hand multiple times in the last decade to get the box-office ball rolling for The Hulk to varying degrees of success, it took an ensemble performance in last year's The Avengers cast with Mark Ruffalo mixing solid rage action with plenty of comic relief to finally make things click for the gamma giant. Indeed, it appears that having finally bottled the right chemistry, Marvel Studios intends to target it effectively sometime late in the upcoming "Phase Two" era of the films, which officially kicks off with this May's Iron Man 3.

Once seemingly the odd man out with an impending cosmic crucible on deck against the powerful Titan, Thanos and the rise of the Guardians of the Galaxy next year, Hulk could be poised to steal the show to an even larger extent than he did in The Avengers. According to LR's report, this will manifest in the buildup to what will be a new solo film franchise for the scientist-turned-towering-troglodyte, who is "always angry."

Think you've seen that movie before? Well think again. Keep going below for what may be some spoileriffic details regarding the Phase Three fate of The Hulk.

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Captain America: The Winter Soldier Lands Its Leading Lady

It looks like next year's sequel, Captain America: The Winter Soldier won't have our hero going stag for long. Kicking off the weekend with a bit of news, it is being reported that Revenge star, Emily VanCamp is in talks to land the role of S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, Sharon Carter.

Beating out an array of some of the hottest up and coming starlets in the business, VanCamp will be playing a critical part of the new life of Chris Evans' unfrozen 1940's super soldier, Steve Rogers. However, with familial connection to his old love interest, Peggy Carter (played by Hayley Atwell in Captain America: The First Avenger), things could get awkward.

In the original comic storyline which had Cap revived in the early 1960's, Sharon Carter was the younger sister of Peggy Carter. Growing up inspired by Peggy's stories of Cap's heroic exploits, Sharon eventually joined S.H.I.E.L.D. under the code name, "Agent 13." Of course, with comic book canons enduring far longer than what's believable, that relationship over the years has been retconned, turning Sharon into Peggy's niece. However, for the film, Sharon will need to be a few generations removed from Peggy who, in a deleted scene in The Avengers, was confirmed to still be alive. Therefore, in all likelihood, VanCamp's Sharon Carter could very well be the granddaughter of Peggy.

Now with a potential romance with a fetching blonde femme fatale (albeit one whose ancestor is his old girlfriend,) Captain America will also ready himself for a bittersweet reunion with a friend he once thought was deceased in James "Bucky" Barnes (Sebastian Stan), now also unfrozen and brainwashed by sinister forces as the titular Winter Soldier.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier looks to make a cross-generational score at theaters on April 4, 2014.


X-Men: Days Of Future Past: Sentinels And Other Plot Details

In a tidbit that will probably come as no huge surprise to those who familiar with the X-Men canon, 20th Century Fox creative consultant, Mark Millar has confirmed that next year's time-bending bonanza of badassery, X-Men: Days of Future Past will be riddled with the team's signature antagonists in the giant robotic ravagers of all things mutant, The Sentinels.

While the comic book creative guru, Millar has been known to drop the occasional big fish story to the fans, this one certainly has a ring of truth. Yet, in an interview with SFX, Millar's revelations, seemingly confirming the obvious, consequently may have also shed light on some previously-unknown things about the film's plot. (Which was recently revealed to center in 1973; ten whole years after X-Men: First Class.)

Regarding the Sentinels, who will prospectively arrive on the big screen not too long in the wake of another "Big Robot" movie in Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim, Millar comments:

“I hadn't actually thought about that [laughs]. Yeah, that is true isn't it? You will have a couple of big movies with giant robots in them. I don't really want to give too much away but the Sentinels are a big feature of this story. They will be cool and this will deliver on all of the teasers. We've all been waiting for this ever since X-Men: The Last Stand showed us one of their heads. Now it is finally coming, and we only have to pay ten quid to see it in the cinema whereas they're having to pay $100 million to deliver it. So I'm delighted [laughs].”

It certainly wouldn't be Days of Future Past without time travel and Sentinels, so Millar may not have dropped any bombshells on that one. Yet, it is noteworthy that we're talking about the X-Men films, specifically, Fox's X-Men films, so a confirmation of an aspect as basic as this is probably worth a victory of some sort for the fan community.

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The Wolverine: New Image Shows Logan Looking Sharp

This summer's big screen return of Hugh Jackman as Marvel's beserker-rage-racked wrecking ball in The Wolverine has officially released a new image showing a more suave side of the stoic claw-swinger.

Exclusive to Empire, the image shows our hero, Logan carrying is usual intense demeanor while decked out in a smooth black suit; a look that will certainly be vogue in downtown Tokyo, Japan with the criminal elements with whom he'll be dealing. Of course, Logan's apparent stop at the Men's Warehouse was not without special purpose, seeing as he was summoned to the Land of the Rising Sun on behalf of an old flame named Mariko (Tao Okamoto) who has been bartered for marriage by her corrupt father like livestock.

Interestingly enough, the Empire article provides some new insight into the film's plot regarding the reasons for Wolverine's abrupt plane ticket purchase. Upon arriving in Japan, Logan will apparently reconnect with an old friend; an unnamed character who owes a great debt to him, wishing to repay it before he passes away.

"What you'll come to find is that this is someone he spent prison-time with in Nagasaki. And the legacy of that experience - effectively Logan saved him - is that this man is on his deathbed, and is looking to give him a gift, to thank him for the life he's had.

"But this gift draws Logan into a very complex and very unexpected world within both contemporary Japan and, to some extent, the feudal history of Japan. He's so in isolation, so out of his element. It's a much more powerful distillation of his character than you've seen before."

The film will ravage its way to theaters on July 26. Check out the poster below to see a handsomely-hair-trigger mutant who seems to clean up well when he's not busy disemboweling the diabolical.

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Iron Man 3 Reveals Super Bowl Spot And New Poster

It appears that Iron Man 3 will not go unnoticed during this Sunday's big game. A new teaser spot has made its debut which will air during the broadcast and a new poster has been unveiled showing Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark in a rather gravity-centric predicament.

Seeing as Super Bowl ads are now running at about $4 million, this spot clocks in at a hot 13 seconds. Consequently, the teaser spot is not be a marathon of new material, but it does contain a few sporadic tidbits of new images; specifically, a good look at Jon Favreau returning a Happy Hogan, Guy Pierce as Extremis nanovirus developer, Aldrich Killian, and another quick glimpse of the gorgeous Rebecca Hall as scientist, Maya Hansen, who seemed to pick the WORST possible time to visit Tony and Pepper at their home.

However, the most substantive revelation may come from the new poster which accompanies the spot. We've known for a while that at some point in the film, Tony gets his ass handed to him by something, leaving his armor in shambles. Yet, this poster seems to imply that Tony will once again learn the hard way that reentry is a bitch.

Check below to see the new teaser spot, as well as a poster showing what happens when cutbacks force Tony to use Chinese-made replacement parts for his armors. (Well, that's one theory, anyway.)

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Sin City: A Dame To Kill For Casts Eva Green For Lead

Upcoming follow-up, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For has finally found the titular "dame" in question: Eva Green has been brought on board to play the sexy, sinister Ava Lord.

Now, co-directors, Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez's violent, scuzzy, neo-noir pulp film has a gorgeous face to put on its posters. In this instance, that face will be Eva as Ava. Perhaps the most important character in the film, she will be introduced as a doting damsel in distress who reaches out to her ex, Dwight McCarthy (Josh Brolin) seemingly fearing for her life from her abusive gangster of a husband. However, we soon find out that the only things in distress are the hapless helping of men enchanted by her beauty who she uses, abuses, and kicks to the curb. After getting his heart broken by Ava years earlier, Dwight, despite his better judgment, is about to  prove that no good deed goes unpunished as he is thrust into a web of sex, lies, and murder. -- Although, the sex might make it worthwhile.

According to Miller and Rodriguez in a joint statement:

"We've been wanting to tell this story for a very long time. Ava Lord is one of the most deadly and fascinating residents of Sin City." From the start, we knew that the actor would need to be able to embody the multifaceted characteristics of this femme fatale and we found that in Eva Green. We are ecstatic that Eva is joining us."

For Green, the role is a perfect fit as the raven-haired beauty with sharp blue eyes has played strong, manipulative women in the past with her career-making role as Bond Girl, Vesper Lynd in Casino Royale, as woeful witch, Angelique in last year's Dark Shadows, and as Persian general, Artemisia in this summer's 300: Rise of an Empire. This role, however, may end up being both her sexiest and most wicked, yet.

Sin City: A Dame to Kill For goes homicidal for love at theaters..in 3D on October 4.


The Amazing Spider-Man Sequel Gets Paul Giamatti As Rhino?

It appears that the upcoming sequel to last year's The Amazing Spider-Man could have another iconic antagonist to add to its rogues gallery. According to The Hollywood Reporter, actor, Paul Giamatti has been in talks to play the immense, unstoppable, super-powered assassin, Rhino.

If the news indeed pans out, the Sideways and John Adams star, Giamatti will be the second belligerent baddie set for film, presumably joining Jaime Foxx as spark-shooting sinner, "Electro." Additionally, the report indicates that actress, Felicity Jones has joined the cast for a role that has yet to be specified. Although, given her age, look, and resume, the role could very well be for "Betty Brant," the beleaguered secretary of the Spider-Man-hating Daily Bugle boss, J. Jonah Jameson. (Played by Elizabeth Banks in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy.) If it is the case that Jones plays Betty, it would create an opening for Jameson, which would also be a critical new casting decision.

It will certainly be interesting to see where Rhino fits into the puzzle of this film. In the comics, the character was previously a low-level thug in the Russian Mob named Aleksei Sytsevich who, looking to line his pockets, gets the opportunity to be a guinea pig in an experiment to create a sinister super-soldier on the behalf of some shady benefactors. Exposed to extensive radiation and chemicals (the true hallmark of super-power origins,) Aleksei's body becomes bonded with a crafted super-durable armor made to look like a rhinoceros. 

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Marvel Kicks Off Phase Three With Ant-Man And Doctor Strange

It appears that upcoming film adaptations for Ant-Man and Doctor Strange are in the works over at Marvel Studios for what is being referred to as "Phase Three" of their release planning. What does that mean exactly?

Well, just to drop a clue, we are now exiting what is considered the Phase One era, which culminated with The Avengers last year and ready to begin Phase Two, which will kick off with Iron Man 3 in May, continuing with Thor: The Dark World this fall, Guardians of the Galaxy in 2014, and The Avengers 2 in 2015. Indeed, it appears that the studio is watching over the pacing of their comic book film releases diligently and cautiously. In a recent interview with MTV, studio head, Kevin Feige discusses details about this phase-centric release strategy:

"'Ant-Man' is definitely part of Phase Three," Marvel's Kevin Feige told MTV News during our recent interview. "Like 'Iron Man 3,' it's certainly set in the Marvel Universe, but it's also through the lens of Edgar Wright — which is the only reason we're making the movie."  Adding: It's very much an 'Ant-Man' origin movie from the perspective of Edgar Wright and his co-writer Joe Cornish. It will of course be firmly planted in the MCU, (Marvel Comics Universe) but a different corner than we've seen before."

Regarding Doctor Strange: "'Doctor Strange,' which I've been talking about for years, is definitely one of them," he confirmed. "He's a great, original character, and he checks the box off this criteria that I have: he's totally different from anything else we have, just like 'Guardians of the Galaxy.' He's totally different from anything we've done before, as is 'Ant-Man,' which keeps us excited."

We've known for some time that the film debut of would-be Avengers member, Ant-Man will come on November 6, 2015, just six months after The Avengers 2 hits theaters. However, this latest revelation, besides confirming the Doctor Strange project, reveals that the story of the size-shaping Hank Pym (which will be directed by Edgar Wright) is considered an important watershed project for the studio, who will use it as their Phase Three kickoff. -- A far cry from the low-tier side project it was once dismissed as being.


X-Men: Days Of Future Past Gets 3 More

The cast of upcoming franchise follow-up, X-Men: Days of Future Past continues to be growing into a family reunion returning of former residents of the X-Mansion. This time joining the plethora of powerful mutants are, Anna Paquin, Shawn Ashmore, and Ellen Page!

Over the weekend, director, Bryan Singer tweeted the identity of this latest trio of acquisitions. Of course, fans of Singer's previous trilogy of films (the last of which was directed by Brett Ratner,) know the players, respectively as Rogue, Bobby "Iceman" Drake, and Kitty "Shadowcat" Pryde. According to Singer:

Very excited to welcome #annapaquin, @ellenpage & @shawnrashmore to #XMen #DaysofFuturePast - thank you @BrettRatner for letting them live!

The film will be an adaptation of the popular time-travel-infused "Days of Future Past" comic book storyline from Chirs Claremont and John Byrne published back in 1981. In that story, the assassination of an anti-mutant senator alters the timeline, subjecting mutantkind to a future where they are hunted to near extinction by the giant robot Sentinels. Obviously, there are stark differences between the film canon and the comics and the specifics about how the storyline deviates are still unknown. (For example, Kitty Pryde was the main protagonist in the original comic book storyline. While Ellen Page is returning to play her, it's doubtful the film will focus on her character in the same way.)

However, what is clear, is that the younger "First Class" cast of James McAvoy's Charles Xavier and Michael Fassbender's Magneto in the 1960's [*] will still remain the primary players, while the previous trilogy cast led by Patrick Stewart's Charles Xavier, Ian McKellen's Magneto, joined by Hugh Jackman's Wolverine, will be set presumably in the present, battling the implications of the timeline disruption.

*Update: It has since been revealed that the timeline for the First Class cast will be set in 1973; ten years after the last film.

X-Men: Days of Future Past alters the space-time continuum without the benefit of a souped-up sports car to hit theaters on July 18, 2014.


2013 Movie Preview: Thor: The Dark World

Release Date: November 8
Director: Alan Taylor
Rating: Not Yet Rated

Thor returns to battle a powerful enemy who has emerged from a dark realm with a plot to plunge the nine realms, including Earth into a shadowy oblivion. 

What We Know:

It appears that after the ordeal on Earth in The Avengers, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is still unable to rest on his laurels. Having escaped (again) from the custody of Asgard, the mischievous machinations of his half-brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) have reached a stunning new level of inconsiderateness, stirring the malevolent intentions of a race of dark elves in the realm of Svartalfheim, lead by its cruel, megalomaniacal master, Malekith the Accursed (Christopher Eccleston).

A conniving collaboration between Loki and Malekith is in the works designed to help Malekith gain a powerful relic kept in Asgard which the domineering dark elf will use to thrust all nine realms into a darkness more suitable to his aesthetically-unpleasing empire. The cruel conspiracy escalates to a scale too large for even King Odin of Asgard (Anthony Hopkins) to handle. However, the plot also seems to involve a more personally-vengeful aspect designed to destroy Odin's son, Thor. That feat will be accomplished by exploiting the one thing he loves the most: Earth woman, Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), luring him into a battle with a brutal, powerful dark elf warrior named Kurse (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje) whose mission from Malekith involves bad, bad things for the Asgardian prince.

The fate of the universe hangs in the balance and Thor's reunion with Jane will have to put love-struck sentiment on the back-burner as a grand battle is at hand between the armies of Asgard and the dark elves of Svartalfheim that threatens to shatter their respective mystical lands forever. For our hammer-hurling hero, mitigating this madness could ultimately require that he make what is being officially described as a sacrifice of "everything."

Filling the cast, are returnees, Idris Elba, Kat Dennings, Jaimie Alexander, Ray Stevenson, Stellan Skarsgård, Renee Russo, and Tadanobu Asano. Additionally, Zachary Levi joins the cast, replacing Josh Dallas as "Fandral."

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2013 Movie Preview: Oldboy


Posted January 24, 2013 - By Joseph Baxter

2013 Movie Preview: Oldboy

Release Date: October 11
Director: Spike Lee
Rating: Not Yet Rated

A man who was kidnapped and stuck into a hotel-like prison in isolation for 15 years, is suddenly released for unknown reasons. Seeking revenge, his investigation unfolds a bizarre and personal plot.

What We Know:

The 2003 South Korean cult classic film by director, Park Chan-wook (based on a late-90's Japanese manga series) is reinvented and westernized. Following the basic framework of the the manga and film, a man named Joe Doucett (Josh Brolin) seems to prefer the sip of a booze bottle to familial obligations, specifically when it comes to being home for his young daughter's birthday. It would be a date he'd never make as he is apprehended in the streets and shuttled away.

He awakens in a somewhat aesthetically normal hotel room of sorts, except at this resort, checkout is sometime around...NEVER, and the concierge is more of a warden. Nevertheless, he's fed on a daily basis and still able to keep up with current events through the medium of television. Unfortunately, it's also through that medium which he learns that his wife has been murdered. 15 years go by and an older Joe, grizzled and unbalanced from a decade and a half of isolation suddenly finds himself freed in circumstances as mysterious as his initial capture.

After a rough period of readjustment with the outside world, he befriends a young woman named Marie (Elizabeth Olsen) and begins an investigation into the motives behind his long ordeal. -- And by "investigation" we mean a bit of sleuthing followed by a one-man marathon of brutal, bloody, cringe-inducing violence, against his former captors, including what promises to be a horrendous torture sequence with his former "warden," Chaney (Samuel L. Jackson), inspired by a famous scene in the original film involving a hammer.

Soon, enough, the mastermind of the machinations reveals himself as billionaire, Adrian Pryce (Sharlto Copley), who gives Joe five short days to continue his investigation and find out the true motives behind his imprisonment. If successful, Pryce will end his own life. However, failure will result in the death of his potential new flame, Marie.

Michael Imperioli, Lance Reddick, Max Casella, and Caitlin Dulany round out the cast.

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Guardians Of The Galaxy Looks To Sandler Or Carrey?

The colossal cavalcade of casting rumors for Marvel's upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy has taken a surprising, comedic turn. It seems that the galactic super-team could very well find itself with the addition of either Adam Sandler OR Jim Carrey.

According to a report from Latino Review, Marvel Studios apparently inquired about the availability of the two comedy icons, Sandler and Carrey. -- That, is pretty much the extent of the rumor at this time. For what role, you may ask? It's a good question for which no definite answer exists just yet.

The dominant subject when it comes to the vast array of Guardians casting rumors has surrounded who will play the lead character, "Star-Lord." In fact, the LR report throws the names of Wes Bentley, Chris Lowell, and Cam Gigandet into that already heavy mix. One might conclude that, given the names that have been thrown out there, that the Star-Lord role will go to an actor in his late-20's to early-30's, which makes it unlikely that Sandler and Carrey are up for that particular role.

However, Guardians has two notable slots for the more...let's just say, "exotic" members of the team. In fact, given their eccentric nature, it may be the case that the spot in question is more for voice work for an animated character.

Keep reading below, to see where we're going.

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Man Of Steel Lands Two More Villains

This summer's superhero revival, Man of Steel will apparently sport a larger rogues gallery than we originally thought. It looks like Michael Shannon's Kryptonian refugee war criminal, General Zod will have plenty of super-powered backup when he tangles with Henry Cavill's Superman.

According to ComicBook.com, Richard Cetrone (pictured left) has joined the cast as Kryptonian militant Zod loyalist named "Tor-An." Revard Dufrense (pictured right) has also jumped on board as "Dev-Em," an escaped Kryptonian criminal who has found himself with Zod's group. This ups the tally of "evil escaped Kryptonians" to a lopsided four-on-one affair, taking into account Zod and his female conspirator, Faora played by Antje Traue. Indeed, this new Superman is going to need better tricks than tossing "Super Saran Wrap" and taking out his aggression on hapless big-mouth yokels in local greasy spoons.

Both of these new acquisitions are relative unknowns, but may be recognizable to genre fans. Cetrone, a longtime stuntman, has been the "nameless bad guy" in numerous major films, such as The Book of Eli, Sucker Punch, and the Underworld films. Plus, he had a notable role as the Frost Giant Captain in Thor. Dufrense, on the other hand, has a significantly shorter resume, with roles in Sucker Punch, on TV with Supernatural, Eureka, and previous Superman property, Smallville. However, he was also one half of a memorable, "creepy-sexy" moment from TV's revival of V where he, playing a stoic super-soldier, conceives children with Morena Baccarin's evil lady lizard leader.

On another note, the film has been officially given a PG-13 rating by the MPAA, rendering it family-friendly, but intense enough.

Man of Steel takes karate classes anticipating many opponents at theaters on June 14. Also, check out our preview write-up.


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