Hollywood and the entertainment world in general seem to thrive on unsubstantiated rumors (or just plain lies) and every week we bring you the cream of the crop — from the latest leaked tidbits of information about upcoming movie releases, to the next big projects your favorite stars are rumored to be working on. We can’t guarantee the truth of these rumors, but we can promise you that you’ll at least be entertained reading about them. So grab a pinch of salt and check out five of the biggest rumors that came out of Hollywood this week.
1. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story: Character names and the trailer premiere date revealed?
Star Wars fans will have to wait until 2017 before they can see Episode VIII — the sequel to The Force Awakens — but in the meantime they have Rogue One: A Star Wars Story to look forward to in December. As part of Lucasfilm’s so-called Star Wars Anthology Series, Rogue One and the other anthology films will delve into various peripheral characters and events from the Star Wars universe that are only briefly mentioned in the main trilogy films. Rogue One will tell the story of the resistance fighters who stole the plans to the first Death Star that was destroyed in Episode IV. Much like they did with The Force Awakens, Lucasfilm is keeping most details about the film under wraps, having revealed only a brief story synopsis and a main cast listing so far.
However, it appears a few additional details may have leaked. According to MakingStarWars, a stunt double photo from a casting site revealed that there is a female character in the film named Lyra Erso. Based on the size and height of the stunt double, it appears that Lyra Erso may be the name of the character that Felicity Jones plays. MakingStarWars also noted that Riz Ahmed is playing a character named Bodhi Rook and Mads Mikkelsen is most likely playing a character named Galen.
Fortunately, it may not be long before we know if some of these rumors are true or not. According to an unnamed source cited by StarWarsTime, the first trailer for Rogue One will be shown with Captain America: Civil War, which hits theaters on May 6. Although Lucasfilm has not confirmed this rumor, it should be noted that The Force Awakens also made its debut with a Marvel film (Avengers: Age of Ultron), so it would not be without precedent.
2. Captain America: Civil War: Will Ant-Man become Giant-Man?
— Funko Pop Vinylz (@PopVinylz) January 5, 2016
Speaking of Marvel, it appears that there’s a good chance that everyone’s favorite insect-sized superhero won’t be so tiny in Captain America: Civil War. Funko Pop Vinylz recently revealed a toy figure that appears to be Ant-Man, but is labeled as Giant-Man. The toy box is also labeled with the Captain America: Civil War movie logo, so presumably this means that Ant-Man will be super-sizing himself at some point in the film. And while Ant-Man never turned into Giant-Man in last year’s standalone film about the superhero, the character has done it plenty of times in the Marvel comic books.
3. Will the upcoming Star Trek TV series use Gene Roddenberry’s story ideas?
As announced by CBS last November, a completely new Star Trek TV series will be launched in January 2017. And while a writer for the new Star Trek series has yet to be announced, a recent discovery could provide a treasure trove of material for the show. This week, data recovery company Drive Savers announced that it had recovered data from over 200 disks that belonged to legendary Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry. Although the company declined to reveal exactly what was on the disks, it is quite possible that it could include Star Trek story ideas, or even scripts, that might be used in the upcoming series. “2016 just happens to be the 50th anniversary of the original Star Trek, anything could happen, the world will have to wait and see,” said Drive Savers director of engineering Mike Cobb.
4. The Walking Dead creator reveals behind-the-scenes problems
More details about the firing of Frank Darabont — the creator and showrunner behind the hit TV show The Walking Dead – have emerged in a recently unsealed deposition he gave as part of his lawsuit against AMC. Darabont, who was fired in 2011, claimed that AMC executives concocted the reasons for his firing. “They accused me of not having directors tone meetings,” said Darabont in his deposition obtained by The Hollywood Reporter. “And I said, ‘That’s absolutely not true, I have had a directors tone meeting with every single director this season.’”
He also described AMC executives as out of touch with the difficulties that the cast and crew endured making the show. “When they did rarely show up on the [Georgia-based] set, [they] would … drive in from the airport in their air conditioned car, race into the air conditioned tent we had there so the actors could have a break and not pass out from the heat, poke their heads out on occasion, and half an hour later jump back in their car and fly back to their air conditioned office in New York,” said Darabont according to The Hollywood Reporter. “I had a tremendous lack of respect for them.”
The Walking Dead will return for the second half of its sixth season on February 14, 2016.
5. Is Beyoncé working on a new Oscar-worthy film?
Superstar singer and actress Beyoncé is working on a new movie that she hopes will win her an Oscar, according to an anonymous Hollywood source cited by The Sun. Per the source, Beyoncé is developing a film about Saartjie Baartman, a South African woman who was brought to London in the 1800s and displayed in freak shows due to her large buttocks. “Beyonce is desperate to be taken seriously as an actress,” said The Sun’s source. “Even though she’s had a string of well-received movies, she still feels her breakthrough role is yet to come. She now wants to write a screenplay that gains her respect — and hopefully awards — from the film industry, and thinks Saartjie’s story could be her ticket.”
While it’s unknown if there’s any truth to this rumor, it should be noted that it wouldn’t be a stretch for Beyoncé to win an Oscar. The actress previously earned a Golden Globes nomination for her role in 2006’s Dreamgirls, and the tragic story of Baartman’s life certainly sounds like it would garner the Academy’s attention.
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