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.
The Scorpion King Getting Rebooted
Universal and Dwayne Johnson (through his and Dany Garcia’s Seven Bucks Productions) are rebooting The Scorpion King. They have set Jonathan Herman to pen the script. It is unlikely Johnson will star or make an appearance due to his busy schedule, but sources say there is always a chance that might change. Plot details are vague, but the reboot will reportedly be set in modern times.
Here’s what Johnson said on the announcement:
“The Scorpion King was my very first role ever on the silver screen and I’m honored and excited to reimagine and deliver this cool mythology to a whole new generation. I wouldn’t have had the career I’m lucky enough to have had it not been for The Scorpion King and I’m thrilled that we at Seven Bucks Productions can help create those same opportunities for other hardworking actors today. I believe Jonathan Herman will put in the hard work to deliver a fantastic script for our global audience.”
Steven Caple Jr. to Direct New Transformers Film
Paramount Pictures and Hasbro Studios have set Steven Caple Jr. to direct the next Transformers film. Apparently, negotiations have yet to begin, but he is their top choice. The film will reportedly be set in a revamped timeline and will not be connected to Michael Bay’s films. No word yet on if it will be a sequel to 2018’s Bumblebee.
Mel Gibson Gives a Lethal Finale Update
Mel Gibson was on Good Morning America recently promoting his latest film Fatman, and give an update on the fifth Lethal Weapon film. Here’s what he said:
“Yeah! No, absolutely. And the man who was behind all that, the man who brought it to the screen and gave it its, the goodies, is working on it right now: Richard Donner. He’s a legend.”
Last time we checked, the sequel was tentatively titled Lethal Finale, and would be the conclusion to the popular series that started back in 1987. No word yet if the film will ever actually get made, but every actor involved is definitely getting “too old for this shit”.
Dan Trachtenberg to Direct New Predator Film
Dan Trachtenberg has been announced as the director for Predator 5. Sources report that it will not pick up on the unresolved plot threads from 2018’s The Predator. Instead, the film “will follow a Comanche woman who goes against gender norms and traditions to become a warrior.” Patrick Aison will write the screenplay for the film.
Anthony Mackie to Star in The Ogun
Anthony Mackie (Altered Carbon) is set to star in and produce the action-thriller The Ogun for Netflix. Madison Turner (The Dark Knight Rises) wrote the script that has been described as “John Wick meets Dante’s Inferno.”
The film “centers on a man named Xavier Rhodes who brings his teenage daughter to Nigeria to find a cure for the rare genetic condition that he passed on to her. When his daughter is kidnapped, Rhodes goes on a rampage through the criminal underworld to find her before it’s too late, testing his powerful abilities to the limit.”
Channing Tatum, Phil Lord and Chris Miller Team For Monster Movie
Channing Tatum is set to star in an untitled monster project from creatives Phil Lord and Chris Miller for Universal. The film is being described as a modern-day, tongue-in-cheek thriller inspired by Universal’s classic monster legacy. Reid Carolin had the original idea for the project and wrote the treatment. Wes Tooke is writing the script.
Earlier this year, The Invisible Man opened to rave reviews and became a box office success prompting Universal to put a number of other monster movies in development.
Space Force Renewed for Season 2
Netflix has renewed Space Force starring Steve Carell for a second season. Production will move from Los Angeles to Vancouver in an effort to save costs. That is all at this time.
Jon M. Chu to Direct Live-Action Lilo & Stitch
Jon M. Chu (Crazy Rich Asians) is in negotiations to direct Disney’s live-action remake of Lilo & Stitch, The Hollywood Reporter has learned. The studio is still searching for a scribe to work with Chu. Mike Van Waes wrote the current draft for the project, which has not been greenlit and is still in development.
It is unclear whether the remake will be released theatrically or on Disney+. Chu is also signed on to direct the pilot for the Willow sequel series on Disney+. His next film, In the Heights, will be released in 2021 by Warner Bros.
Jake Gyllenhaal & Michael Bay Team for Ambulance
Jake Gyllenhaal is in talks to star in Ambulance, the latest from Michael Bay. The script was penned by Chris Fedak. No studio is attached yet.
The film is being described as in “the vein of the great action thrillers of the ’90s like Speed and Bay’s Bad Boys.” The project has been in development for a while now, so here’s some old plot details: “A vet just back from Afghanistan is drawn by his brother into a bank robbery in downtown Los Angeles. When the robbery goes horribly wrong, the brothers take hostages and hijack an ambulance. As the situation escalates, old wounds reopen in the relationship between the brothers as they fight to survive what seems like an impossible situation.”
Deadpool & Jump Street Sequels Hire Same Writers
Wendy Molyneux and Lizzie Molyneux-Logelin have just booked a couple of high-profile writing jobs. The sisters have signed on to write Deadpool 3 for Marvel Studios and a female-led Jump Street for Sony. The duo are best known for their work on Bob’s Burgers, where they are writers and executive producers. As for Jump Street, no additional details have been announced, but Tiffany Haddish and Awkwafina were being eyed for the starring roles.
The 355 Delayed to 2022
Universal released the first trailer for The 355 two months ago, and now the film has been delayed. It was originally set to open on MLK weekend next year, but has now been pushed to MLK weekend in 2022 (or January 14, 2022).
As studios continue to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, I’d be expecting to hear more delays in the coming weeks. Warner Bros. is apparently toying with the possibility of releasing a number of its films on HBO Max.
New Pink Panther Movie in the Works
MGM is currently developing a live-action/CGI hybrid Pink Panther film. The film will be directed by Jeff Fowler, who is coming off of the successful Sonic the Hedgehog adaptation. Chris Bremmer (Bad Boys For Life) will write the script. Also, the pink panther will actually be a pink panther, and not a diamond. He will be a hallucination Clouseau sees.
David Fincher Signs Exclusive Deal with Netflix
David Fincher has a good relationship with Netflix that is about to get great. The director has signed a four-year exclusive deal with the streaming service that will see any project he develops end up on the service. Fincher served as executive producer on previous Netflix series Mindhunter and House of Cards (arguably the show that launched the current Netflix empire). His upcoming film Mank for the streaming service also looks like an awards contender.
Here’s what Fincher said on the deal (via The Playlist):
“Yes, I have an exclusivity deal with [Netflix] for another four years. And depending on Mank’s reception, I’ll either go see them sheepishly asking them what I can do to redeem myself or take the attitude of the arrogant asshole who’ll require making other films in black and white. [Laughs] No, I’m here to deliver them ‘content’ — whatever it means— likely to bring them spectators, in my small sphere of influence.”
The deal is reportedly worth over nine-figures. Fincher continued:
“Now [because] I signed this Netflix deal it’s also because I’d like to work like Picasso painted, to try very different things, to try to break the shape or change the operating mode. I like the idea of having a body of work. And yes, I admit that it feels strange, after forty years in this profession, to only have ten films under my belt. Well, eleven, but ten that I can say are mine. Yes, objectively, it is a pretty terrifying observation.”
Apple TV+ Scoops Up Tetris
Apple TV+ has picked up the distribution rights to Tetris, an upcoming biographical film on the creation of the game and its licensing around the world. Taron Egerton is set to star as Henk Rogers, the Dutch video game designer who was the first to secure the rights to distribute Tetris on consoles.
Jon S. Baird is directing the movie, which will follow the true story of Henk Rogers, who is known for “securing the rights to distribute Tetris on video game consoles where the game found popularity, and as the founder of Bullet-Proof Software (now called Blue Planet Software) and The Tetris Company, which licenses the Tetris trademark.” Noah Pink penned the screenplay.
Boss Level Heads to Hulu
Boss Level, the latest from director Joe Carnahan, has finally secured a distributor. Hulu will release sci-fi action flick that stars Frank Grillo and Mel Gibson in 2021. The streaming service signed an eight-figure deal for United States distribution rights to the film.
In Boss Level, Grillo plays “former special forces agent Roy Pulver, who is trapped in a time loop that constantly repeats the day of his murder. Pulver manages to uncover clues about a secret government project that could unlock the mystery behind his death but must find Colonel Ventor (Gibson), the head of the government program, while outrunning assassins determined to keep him from the truth, and save his wife (Watts).”
There’s a good chance the success of Palm Springs, another time loop film that Hulu released this year, led to the acquisition. Carnahan screened the film for an audience in Hollywood earlier this February, where it generated some positive buzz. There’s a good chance Hulu might just strike time loop gold again.
Schwarzenegger TV Series Lands at Netflix
Netflix has picked up Skydance TV‘s hourlong spy drama set to star Arnold Schwarzenegger. The deal will reportedly head into development with a script-to-series commitment. The series is said to be a “global spy adventure with a father (Schwarzenegger) and daughter (Monica Barbaro) at the center of the story.”
Darkwing Duck Reboot in Development for Disney+
After appearing in the rebooted DuckTales series, Darkwing Duck is getting his own show. Disney is reportedly eyeing a full reboot of the classic ’90s afternoon animated series Darkwing Duck for its streaming platform Disney+, according to Variety. Point Grey’s Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, James Weaver and Alex McAtee are set to develop and executive produce the reboot with the latter overseeing it for the company.
The original series premiered in September 1991 and ran for three seasons. It shared a loose continuity with the original DuckTales show (both featured pilot Launchpad McQuack). Darkwing Duck has had a recurring role in the most recent seasons of the new DuckTales. It is unknown at this time if the upcoming reboot will be a spin-off or a new take on the character.
Universal Developing New Van Helsing Movie
The failure of Dark Universe was only a minor setback for Universal. The studio has moved full steam ahead on new adaptations of its popular Universal Monsters characters. James Wan is set to produce a new film featuring legendary monster hunter Van Helsing. Julius Avery, who helmed Overlord, is set to direct. Avery will also re-write a script previously written by Eric Pearson. Helsing was most recently played by Hugh Jackman in a cheesy, but not that bad 2004 film.
That’s it for the last few weeks. What news above has you the most interested? Let’s hear those thoughts, screenagers!