New Look at Gal Gadot in ‘Wonder Woman’

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Last March, Gal Gadot stole the show with her incredible performance as Wonder Woman in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Next Summer, Gadot will be back as the amazonian warrior in her standalone feature debut in Wonder Woman. Warner Bros. has revealed a new image of Gadot alongside co-star Chris Pine who plays Steve Trevor in the film.

The image was released with an interview with the film’s director Patty Jenkins where she talked about harnessing male superhero tropes for women:

“We’ve spent years treating male heroes in certain ways. I just applied those same tropes to her, and all these incredible radical moments suddenly appear to an audience.”

Gadot also emphasized the importance of balancing those male tropes to empower feminism itself:

“We knew it was tricky. We wanted to find the balance between portraying her as confident and strong and feminine and warm. I didn’t want her to be a ball buster. I didn’t want her to be bossy. You can be powerful and also loving.”

As a white male, I find it incredibly refreshing to see women being empowered in film whether it be a superhero movie or epic science fantasies such as The Force Awakens and Rogue One. Female heroines in blockbuster movies are long overdue. Women deserve to be featured in the spotlight in these kinds of films whether it be solo or alongside male co-stars. These vehicles offer an entry point to women who would have otherwise been disinterested in action blockbusters because they either felt excluded or weren’t able to relate to the characters. We have a long way to go but I long for the day when we aren’t talking about these kinds of things anymore and boys and girls grow up playing with their action figures together.

Wonder Woman hit theaters June 9, 2017.

The film stars Gal Gadot in the titular role as Wonder Woman, Chris Pine as Steve Trevor, Robin Wright as General Antiope and Connie Nielson as Queen Hippolyta with a script penned by Alan Heinberg and Geoff Johns, directed by Patty Jenkins.

 “’Wonder Woman’ hits movie theaters around the world next summer when Gal Gadot returns as the title character in the epic action adventure from director Patty Jenkins. Before she was Wonder Woman, she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained to be an unconquerable warrior. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, when an American pilot crashes on their shores and tells of a massive conflict raging in the outside world, Diana leaves her home, convinced she can stop the threat. Fighting alongside man in a war to end all wars, Diana will discover her full powers…and her true destiny.



Former WB President of Creative Development Says Solo Batman Film Will Release in 2018

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Ben Affleck made headlines yesterday when he said he was taking his time writing the solo Batman feature, only to reassure the world today that the film was indeed on track telling Variety:

“We’re on the right track with that and everything is coming together. We’re still finishing up a script. I’m very excited.”

While Affleck said he wasn’t concerned with meeting a release date for the project, it seems the solo Batman feature may indeed have one after all.

Greg Silverman, Warner Bros. President of Creative Development since 2013 (right around the time things began to go downhill at the studio), has stepped down from his position at the studio. Toby Emmerich, President and Chief Operating Officer of New Line Cinema will assume Silverman’s responsibilities, becoming the Chief Content Officer for Warner Brothers. Going forward, Emmerich will oversee films produced by both Warner Brothers and New Line Cinemas.

Speaking to Deadline about his exit from the studio, Silverman addressed the studio’s upcoming slate of projects, casually dropping a major nugget of information regarding the Batman film in development starring Ben Affleck:

“Then in 2018, there is a second Fantastic Beasts film, and Ready Player One feels like an ambitious movie by the world’s best filmmaker, Steven Spielberg, that will set the world on fire. There is Aquaman with James Wan, and Scooby Doo will be a huge launch and then there is Lego Ninjago. And then there is Ben Affleck’s Batman.”

WB currently has a release date reserved for an untitled DC project in July of 2018. Given Silverman’s words, it does seem likely this could be the release of Affleck’s Batman or The Batman as Affleck called it before quickly backtracking on the title. While I do hope they aren’t rushing development of the script to meet the July 2018 release, that is kind of how it works today. Studios don’t just invest in talent and development hoping the film comes to fruition eventually.

As of now, July of 2018 is pretty open giving WB a good opportunity to do major business at the box office. By then, both the young Han Solo film and Avengers: Infinity War will have come and gone, leaving Ant-Man and The Wasp as Batman’s only competition. Ant-Man and The Wasp is not to be underestimated, though, Ant-Man at the time of his introduction into the MCU took home $519 million worldwide. Now that Ant-Man is not only known but loved by a worldwide audience, the sequel is going to be a much heavier hitter at the box office when he returns to theaters.


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David Ayer To Direct ‘Gotham City Sirens’ Movie

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After being shunned from the editing room before Warner Brothers sent Suicide Squad off to Trailer Park productions to put together what became the theatrical release of the film, David Ayer has been welcomed back into the DC fold. Rather than lay the foundation for the DCEU — building their rogue’s gallery up— featuring them individually as antagonists in solo hero led features, Warner Brothers yet again has decided to cut corners in an attempt to catch up to the Marvel cinematic universe by throwing a bunch of villains into another movie together, hoping they can match the box office numbers of films such as The Avengers or Captain America: Civil War.

THR reports Ayer will reteam with Suicide Squad’s diamond in the rough, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn is set to be joined by Catwoman and Poison Ivey in a team up movie based on the comic series Gotham City Sirens. No doubt even the most avid of Suicide Squad haters can’t deny that Robbie was absolutely fantastic in the role, even if she couldn’t decide on an accent. Geneva Robertson-Dworet, who wrote the script for the Tomb Raider reboot which is currently in development will pen the script with DC Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns and Justice League producer Jon Berg set to produce the film.


While the idea of seeing Harley Quinn bouncing off of Catwoman and Poison Ivy sounds fantastic, what is alarming is that the move is due only to the response to Robbie’s performance. Rather than focusing on building a foundation for the DCEU by telling the stories they think are the right to tell, Warner Brothers is simply deciding the direction of the DCEU based on the reaction to the characters introduced so far.

Warner Brothers has also tapped screenwriter Christina Hodson to pen the script for a Harley Quinn/Birds of Prey spinoff with a sequel for Suicide Squad and a Deadshot spinoff in development as well. Isn’t a spinoff supposed to be a spinoff from the main stories that flesh out your cinematic universe rather than serve as the tools to do so? Do we stop calling them spinoffs when there are just as many villain led spinoffs as there are hero led films in the franchise?



Ben Affleck is Taking His Time Writing Solo ‘Batman’ Feature

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The DCEU had a rough year in 2016. After Man of Steel got the cinematic universe off to a good start, Warner Brothers took a few steps backward when both Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad were met with a negative reception, deservedly so. The reaction to BvS caused some last minute changes being made to Justice League which was going under the lens right as BvS hit theaters. Rather than continuing with the doom and gloom tone crafted in BvS, Justice League was going to opt for a lighter tone, injecting some humor so that the audience could have a little more fun.

When it was recently announced that Zak Snyder would be taking a break from the DCEU to helm his passion project The Last Photograph, making way for Ben Affleck’s solo Batman feature to debut in between Justice League Part One and Two, the pressure seemed on to get the ball rolling on Affleck’s Batman which has been rumored to start shooting in the spring of 2017. But Affleck has revealed he is not phased as the actor, writer, director is more concerned with the quality of the film than he is the release date. While promoting his new film Live by Night, Affleck told The New York Times the movie will happen when and if they get the right script together:

I’m a real believer in not doing, not reverse engineering projects to meet a window or a date, but rather like when you get the right story or you get the right idea or you get the right thing, then you make the movie. And so that’s what we’re doing, and I’m hoping to get that done and spending a lot of time on that, but I’m also working on other stuff. And if I could, if I can find it right then there’s nothing I’d love more than to direct a standalone iconic great Batman movie.

It’s reassuring to hear Affleck is more concerned with having a good story than he is with the numbers at the box office but his words to little to inspire confidence if his attention is in fact divided between Batman and other projects. Warner Bros. has a lot riding on the film, Wonder Woman looks like it will help the cinematic universe get back on track, but Batman is the single most important character in the franchise and if his solo film isn’t up to snuff, which it will no doubt be under heavier scrutiny after BvS, it could significantly dilute the brand and leave the future of this cinematic universe in question.


‘Aquaman’ Adds Patrick Wilson as Ocean Master

Warner Bros. is continuing to bulk up the DCEU with A-list talent. Deadline reports Patrick Wilson will play the villainous Ocean Master in James Wan’s upcoming swashbuckling action adventure Aquaman.


In the comics, Orm Marius A.K.A. Ocean Master was fully human half-brother of Arthur Curry A.K.A. Aquaman. He turned nemesis after growing up in Arthur’s shadow, resenting him and turning to technology as a high-tech pirate first attacking ships at sea and later moving on to causing natural disasters in an attempt to hold the world ransom.

The choice to cast Wilson in the role is a safe move for Wan and Warner Brothers. The director and the studio has a long history working with Wilson as he has starred in both installments of the on-going Insidious and Conjuring franchises.

Aquaman, starring Jason Momoa, will be the fifth outing in the DCEU. The character was first introduced in this year’s Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and will also be featured as a main character in the upcoming Justice League. Wilson joins the cast which in addition to Momoa currently includes Amber Heard as Mera, and Willem Dafoe as Nuidis Vulko. An official synopsis for the film has yet to be released.

Warner Bros. has deemed October 5, 2018, as a day worthy for the King of Atlantis to make his big splash in theaters. The film will be debut in both IMAX and 3D.

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‘Justice League: Part Two’ Delayed to Make Room for Solo Batman Flick

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Instead of moving right into production on Justice League: Part Two after completing Justice League, THR reports Zack Snyder will instead take a breather from the DCEU to helm The Last Photograph in order to make room for Ben Affleck to direct and star in the solo Batman film that is currently in development. Details on the plot of Ben Affleck’s solo Batman film are scarce. Joseph Manganiello will co-star as the film’s villain in the role the superhuman mercenary Slade Wilson A.K.A. Deathstroke. Whether Affleck’s Batman will take place before or after the events of the first Justice League is unclear.

This move will also give Warner Bros. an opportunity to make some adjustments to Justice League: Part Two if it needs to do so based on the reaction to Justice League when it hits theaters on November 17, 2017.

The Last Photograph follows a war correspondent in Afghanistan who finds himself the sole survivor of an attack on a group of Americans. The correspondent teams up with a special ops soldier searching for his family, hoping to score the story of his life.



‘Arrow’: “What We Leave Behind” Clip; Producers Preview

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Coming off the heels of the alien invasion by The Dominators, Oliver has been reinvigorated in his crusade to make Star City a better place.

The first half of Arrow season five has been a bit of a rollercoaster in terms of quality. The series has delivered good episodes that seem to be taking the series back to its roots but are then followed by episodes full of implausible plots told with sloppy storytelling reminiscent of the atrocious fourth season. What has been ultimately the most frustrating component of season five is this year’s big bag, Prometheus. The mystery of Prometheus’ true identity is rather dull and leaves Arrow without a compelling narrative. The producers expect us to be interested in the villain without actually giving us a reason to be. The reveal of Evelyn Sharpe (Madison Mclaughlin) as a traitor in Team Arrow’s midst, working in cahoots with Prometheus is the most interesting factor related to his character.

Executive producer Wendy Mericle takes us inside the episode, teasing what essentially sounds like a move to retcon Prometheus into the first season during Oliver’s first year as a vigilante when he was a ruthless, cold-blooded killer. Although the show has not offered any context, it has been teased by the producers that Prometheus is the consequence of choices made by Oliver in the past.

The clip released offers a curious shot featuring a crossed-out photo of Lance. The last we saw he was headed to rehab but could Prometheus have captured him and killed him already? Will tonight’s midseason finale finally reveal the identity of Prometheus?

Arrow airs tonight at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.

PROMETHEUS MAKES A DEADLY MOVE AGAINST OLIVER AND THE TEAM — After Prometheus attacks Curtis (Echo Kellum), Oliver (Stephen Amell) realizes Prometheus knows all of Team Arrow’s secret identities and is planning to come for them one by one. Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) and Detective Malone (guest star Tyler Ritter) discover a clue that links Prometheus to Oliver’s past.


‘The Flash’: “The Present” Clip; Producers Preview

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The first half of season three has been jam packed with metahumans, a holographic monster, aliens, and even a God and it’s all about to come to a head on tonight’s midseason finale of The Flash.

Executive producer Todd Helbing takes inside the episode that will see Barry (Grant Gustin) seek out all the advice he can get from Jay Garrick (John Wesley Shipp) and even Dr. Alechemy himself, Julian Albert (Tom Felton) in order to stand toe to toe with the self-proclaimed God of speed, Savitar.

The Flash airs tonight at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.

With Alchemy and Savitar still looming threats, Barry is unable to focus on the Christmas holiday, and especially his relationship with Iris. Determined to stop Savitar, Barry goes to Earth-3 to get advice from Jay Garrick (guest star John Wesley Shipp). Wally wants to help Barry fight Savitar and reveals that he’s been training with H.R., which doesn’t go over well with Barry. As Cisco faces his first Christmas without his brother Dante (guest star Nicholas Gonzalez), old wounds are reopened.


‘Arrow’ EP Reveals Season 5 Finale Details

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Coming as no great surprise, executive producer Marc Guggenheim has revealed that the season five finale of Arrow will take the flashbacks all the way up to the moment the show began: when Oliver (Stephen Amell) is rescued from the island of Lian Yu by a group of Chinese fisherman.

When the series began, Oliver returned to Star(ling) City after what we then thought was five years of being in exile after he was shipwrecked on the island. But at the end of season two, the head of A.R.G.U.S., Amanda Waller (Cynthia Addai-Robinson), took Oliver to Hong Kong to train him as an assassin. Oliver eventually made his way back to the island for season four but then left again for Russia after defeating Baron Reiter (Jimmy Akingbola).

The series was originally intended to last five years and structured so that in its fifth year, the series finale would deliver its final scene with Oliver being rescued from the island. But the show became a massive hit on The CW, spawning the spinoffs The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl. And even with the last few seasons being rocky, ending the show does not seem to be the plan at this point.

While speaking with TV Line, Guggenheim revealed the plan for how they are going to handle Oliver’s rescue from the island at the end of this season:

“Spoiler alert. That’s going to end up being the Season 5 finale. It was really just a hope at that point [in 2012] that the show would run five years, and we always thought that we would intercut the final moment of the series with the first moment of the series, that it would form one big Moebius strip. There’s still a part of me that wishes we could do that but I wouldn’t want to artificially extend the flashbacks, and I also wouldn’t want to artificially cut the show short. It would’ve been a beautifully elegant thing, and five years ago me would’ve loved it. But things change, and I do think it’ll make the Season 5 finale pretty awesome.”

The flashbacks of the first two seasons were great and told a powerful story of survival and a friendship that was torn apart by Slade Wilson’s (Manu Bennett) love for Shado (Celina Jade). The finale for season two culminated with Oliver dueling with Slade both in the past and present and served to close that chapter of the story. Since then the flashbacks have been rather half-baked as they have stretched out arc’s that should only last a few episodes at best across the entire season. The flashbacks have lacked compelling plots and seem to have no focus whatsoever. They come off like a chore the producers want to be done with.

With the end of the flashbacks in sight, one thing is clear: the writers have botched Oliver’s journey toward becoming a vigilante. Oliver’s time in Hong Kong taught him to be a cold-blooded assassin but his combat skills have not improved since he was trained by Slade Wilson in the first two seasons. Oliver is still just as sloppy and as clumsy as ever. Making his skills and abilities at the opening of season one completely implausible.

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‘Aquaman’ Gets A Release Date

The swashbuckling action adventure Aquaman from director James Wan has officially gotten a release date. Deadline reports the joint committee at Warner Bros. and DC Comics has deemed October 5, 2018, as a day worthy for the King of Atlantis to make his big splash in theaters. The film will be debut in both IMAX and 3D.

Aquaman stars Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry/Aquaman and Amber Heard as Mera, Queen of Atlantis. Details on the plot are still unavailable as an official synopsis has yet to be released.