Every week we tap into Hollywood’s psyche, or give it our best shot, to give readers an in-depth look at the latest rumors, casting updates, and other entertainment beats. Everything you read has been incubating in the Hollywood world, and now it’s time to share it with you, Cheat Sheet readers. So, at long last, here is what’s been bouncing around the Internet this week.
1. Christopher Nolan to direct WWII film Dunkirk
According to a recent Cosmic Book News article, Christopher Nolan has been named the director of the soon-to-be Warner Bros. picture, Dunkirk, an “epic” story about the historic evacuation in Dunkirk, France in spring of 1940. Allied forces were stranded there, surrounded by German troops, during the Battle of France. Winston Churchill later called the evacuation — of over 300,000 soldiers — a “miracle.”
Nolan, whose last film was the space adventure Interstellar, also wrote the screenplay for Dunkirk. Cosmic Book News writes that “the large scale film will be shot on a combination of IMAX 65mm and 65mm large format film photography for maximum image quality and high impact immersion. Shooting will begin in May using many of the real locations of the true-life events, which form the background for the story.”
The cast is still largely unknown, but the same report asserts that Mark Rylance, Kenneth Branagh, and Tom Hardy are currently in talks to appear in Dunkirk.
The announcement was made by Greg Silverman, president, Creative Development and Worldwide Production.
2. Alien: Covenant director, Ridley Scott, striving for ‘pretty hard R’ rating
According to comingsoon.net, work is already underway for Ridley Scott’s next project, Alien: Covenant, the second in a proposed trilogy of Alien sequels. The 1979 film was an instrumental work for Scott, who of course has created some of the most frightening, compelling, and visceral films of the past few decades. The Alien series continued on, too, with Aliens, Alien 3, Alien: Resurrection, and Alien vs. Predator. (They were not directed by Scott.)
Scott, however, is fresh off his victories at the Golden Globes for The Martian: he won for Best Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical. The Martian has also earned seven Oscar nominations. On Alien: Covenant, Scott has said that he is “shooting for a pretty hard R rating.” Comingsoon.net writes that “(Scott) even teases that he’s got something ‘much worse’ than the iconic chestbuster scene in store.”
The same article also reveals some plot-related detail for Alien: Covenant. Michael Fassbender and Noomi Rapace will reprise their roles as android David and Elizabeth Shaw, respectively. Katherine Waterston has also been cast to play Daniels. In the film, according to comingsoon.net, a colony ship is on its way to a remote planet; here, the crew finds an “uncharted paradise,” which is really a hellhole inhabited only by David (Fassbender), who survived (or whose head survived?) the Prometheus expedition.
20th Century Fox will release the film, on a tentative date of October 6, 2017. Jack Paglen and Michael Green wrote the screenplay.
3. World War Z 2 loses its director
Following the box office success of 2013’s World War Z, Hollywood was quick to look for a sequel. The project was making some headway, too, behind director Juan Antonio Bayona. However, as CinemaBlend.com reports, Bayona “has literally just left the project.”
CinemaBlend.com cites a Deadline article asserting that Bayona backed out of the project “in order to allegedly fulfill commitments to his currently wrapping film, A Monster Calls.” Paramount released a statement saying that Bayona is no longer able to make World War Z 2 this year, and that it is poised to do so.
The article continues, citing the report again, and mentioning that Bayona may be a possible candidate to helm the next Jurassic World film.
CinemaBlend.com also mentions that it may be hard for the next World War Z film to meet its production deadline, unless a director is found, quickly. Mike Reyes, in the same article, provides three names he’d like to see: David Robert Mitchell (It Follows), Joe Carnahan (The Grey), and Marc Forster (who directed the first World War Z film).
4. X-Men spin-off, Gambit, to begin production in March
Gamespot.com is reporting that the X-Men spin-off film, Gambit, is set to begin production in March. The project was originally delayed after losing its director, Rupert Wyatt (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), last year. Now, Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman has signed on to direct this next film set to broaden the X-Men universe.
Gamespot.com cites WGNO, saying that the film will begin shooting in New Orleans. Fox intended an October release, but with the production delay, it seems unlikely.
5. Who will be cast to play the young Han Solo?
Marco Legaspi of MNR Daily is reporting that several candidates are in contention to play a young Han Solo in one of Disney’s Star Wars anthology films. Legaspi cites an Entertainment Weekly article, which has the short list of candidates to portray the uniquely sardonic space smuggler Han Solo. The actors are: Miles Teller (Whiplash), Ansel Elgort (The Fault in our Stars), Dave Franco (Now You See Me), Scott Eastwood (The Longest Ride), Logan Lerman (Fury), and Jack Reynor (Transformers: Age of Extinction).
The MNR article mentions a Variety piece that has a “longer” list of prospects. Two additional names are: Emory Cohen and Blake Jenner.
The film is set for release in May 2018 (but the first step is finding the perfect young Han).
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