Last Week(s) in Hollywood: ‘Billy the Kid,’ ‘Ship,’ ‘How to Train Your Dragon,’ & More

There’s a lot of breaking news in Hollywood happening every minute. In the age of the blockbuster, it’s easy for some smaller movie and television news to slip through the crack. Last Week in Hollywood is our new weekly series highlighting all the interesting news from the last week that we thought didn’t warrant its own post, but was still worth mentioning. It’s less personal opinions and more a hearty roundup of what you might have missed.

Barry Keoghan to Star in Passion Project Billy the Kid

Barry Keoghan (The Banshees of Inisherin) is set to star in a new feature retelling of the story of Billy the Kid. Keoghan’s American Animals director Bart Layton will helm the feature, which is being produced by Element Pictures and RAW with Film4. The project will reportedly “lean into the Kid’s Irish ancestry and complicated childhood.” Hunter Andrews wrote the latest version of the script, with production likely to commence in the early half of 2024.

“We’ve seen many versions of Billy the Kid on screen before,” stated Keoghan. “My interest was in trying to tell a version that breaks from the facade of that cool, calm, and collected gunslinger Billy the Kid that we’re all used to seeing. I wanted to humanize him in a way.” He added, “I wanted to step outside of the legend that was built up by the papers and tackle the pressure he must have felt from those early days. He was running his whole life.” | Source: Deadline

Plane Sequel Ship Sets Sail

Mike Colter is set to reprise his role from Plane as accused murderer Louis Gaspare in the film’s upcoming sequel, Ship. The follow-up will pick up where Gaspare’s storyline left off in Plane — with the legionnaire disappearing into the jungles of Jolo Island. No word yet on if Colter’s Plane co-star Gerard Butler will return. Discussions are now underway with writers and directors for Ship. Production is expected to begin in late 2023.

Here’s the synopsis for Ship: “Following a high-octane showdown with the local militia on Jolo’s shores, Gaspare manages to commandeer a fishing boat and escape the Philippines. But he’s not out of the woods yet: the media circus surrounding Flight 119 has elevated his public profile, making him the subject of an international manhunt. Hoping to stay under the radar and get far away from his last known location, Gaspare hops aboard a cargo ship in East Asia that’s bound for South Africa. But as he settles in for a long voyage, the stowaway discovers that the ocean vessel is transporting more than goods — it’s also being used as a ferry for a human trafficking ring.

“A strong moral code won’t allow Gaspare to simply stand by, so he once again puts his own freedom on hold. Together with the ship’s second mate, a last-minute addition to the crew who was unaware of its illicit activities, and a passenger with military experience and a bone to pick, Gaspare embarks on a mission to take down the ship’s corrupt captain, keep its innocent passengers safe, and liberate its captives.” | Source: Variety

Universal Developing Live-Action How to Train Your Dragon Film

Universal Pictures has announced a live-action How to Train Your Dragon movie, with Dean DeBlois, the filmmaker behind the original animated trilogy, back in the saddle as writer, director, and producer. The film will serve as DeBlois’ live-action directorial debut. The film will open in theaters on March 14, 2025. Casting is currently underway.

The upcoming live-action reboot will adapt the trilogy of movies that were made by DreamWorks Animation and released in the 2010s. All three animated films were nominated for Best Animated Film at their respective Academy Awards ceremonies. | Source: The Hollywood Reporter

Ishana Night Shyamalan to Make Feature Directorial Debut with The Watchers

New Line has acquired the thriller The Watchers, which will serve as the feature directorial debut for Ishana Night Shyamalan. The daughter of M. Night Shyamalan also wrote the screenplay, which is an adaptation of the A.M. Shine novel of the same name. Production is being fast-tracked, with cameras expected to begin rolling later this year. New Line has already dated the picture for June 7, 2024.

The Watchers follows “Mina, a 28-year-old artist who gets stranded in an expansive, untouched forest in western Ireland. When Mina finds shelter, she unknowingly becomes trapped alongside three strangers that are watched and stalked by mysterious creatures each night.” | Source: Deadline

Warner Bros. Discovery Shelved a Hex Girls Movie

Storyboard artist Carolyn Gair recently revealed that Warner Bros. Discovery secretly shelved another Scooby-Doo film, which would have featured the fan-favorite band Hex Girls. Titled, Scooby-Doo and the Haunted High Rise, the animated film would have seen the Hex Girls play a major role in the story as well as perform some new songs. Unfortunately, a “financial decision” led to the film being shelved. Give us more, Hex Girls, Warner Bros.! | Source: CBR

Geronimo Stilton Getting Animated Feature Film

Radar Pictures has acquired the feature film rights for Geronimo Stilton, the best-selling children’s book series about the crime-solving adventures of a mouse journalist and his eccentric gang of family and friends. David Soren (Turbo, Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie) is attached to adapt and direct the feature film.

“I’m excited to be working with Radar Pictures to bring this incredibly popular book series to life. Geronimo Stilton is beloved around the world and, it’s high time for his first hilarious, feature film adventure” said Soren. The upcoming film will see “Geronimo stumble on a conspiracy that is bigger than anything he and his collaborators have ever tackled before. But working together, they attempt to stay one step ahead of the enemy in a game of cat and mouse.” | Source: Deadline

More News to Know

  • Rhenzy Feliz (Marvel’s Runways), Michael Kelly (House of Cards), Shohreh Aghdashloo (The Expanse), and Deirdre O’Connell (Outer Range) have been added to the HBO Max original series The Penguin. (Deadline)
  • Rian Johnson‘s Poker Face has been renewed for a second season at Peacock. (Deadline)
  • Disney+ has canceled Big Shot and The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers, both after two seasons. (Deadline)
  • Emma Corrin (The Crown) has joined the cast of Robert Eggers‘ vampire movie Nosferatu. (Deadline)
  • Marvel Studios’ The Marvels has been pushed back from July 28, 2023, to November 10, 2023. Disney‘s Haunted Mansion will now open on July 28, 2023, moving up from August 11, 2023. (Deadline)
  • Steven Yeun will reportedly play a major character in Thunderbolts. He is also expected to return as the undisclosed character in future Marvel Cinematic Universe projects. (Variety)
  • Zach Galifianakis has closed a deal to star in Disney‘s live-action remake of Lilo & Stitch. (THR)

That’s it for the last couple of weeks. What projects mentioned are you interested in seeing once completed? Tell us in the comments!

Author: Marmaduke Karlston

"Wait a minute. Wait a minute Doc, uh, are you telling me you built a time machine... out of a DeLorean?"