It’s always exciting when Comic-Con touches down in a major city. For the New York iteration this last weekend, we were treated to a host of exciting news, trailers, and everything in between. Major studios used the New York Comic-Con (NYCC) as a proving ground for tons of new releases arriving in the next year. The sum total was an exciting few days for all involved, leaving us chomping at the bit for more. So what went down over the long NYCC weekend? We gathered together everything we could find, so let’s jump in and revel in our Comic-Con spoils.
1. John Wick: Chapter 2
Few of us could have predicted just how good John Wick would be leading into its 2014 release. Regardless, the Keanu Reeves-led action film shocked audiences everywhere, opening to the tune of an 85% Rotten Tomatoes score and a surprisingly hefty $86 million box office take (on a shoestring, $20 million budget to boot).
That run of success punched its ticket for a full-on franchising, leading us straight to John Wick: Chapter 2. The trailer released at NYCC gives us a good look at the ass-kicking quasi-retired hitman we grew to love in the first film, who once again appears to be out for blood. With a new dog by his side and a whole lot of guns in tow, Wick will once again take to the warpath for reasons that are currently unclear. Still, if it’s anywhere close to the quality of the original, we’ll be in for yet another instant action classic.
2. Kate Beckinsale teases at Blade‘s entry into the MCU
It’s been over a decade since we last had a Blade movie, but that doesn’t mean everyone’s favorite killer is finished. Marvel, who recently reacquired the rights to the character, may very well have designs for an Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) crossover. This was hinted at by Kate Beckinsale at NYCC. Speaking at Comic-Con to promote the release of Underworld: Blood Wars, Beckinsale was asked whether her own vampire-centric franchise would ever crossover with Blade‘s.
While her answer was a resounding “no,” what came after that was more than a little intriguing. “They’re busy. They’re doing something with Blade,” she continued, essentially confirming that Marvel currently has something in the works. With Ghost Rider and Doctor Strange already opening up the door to the occult in the MCU, it wouldn’t be a huge leap to justify Blade’s presence in the near future.
3. Our first look at the Power Rangers reboot
Dark and gritty reboots are an all too common trend in Hollywood right now. Even more common is watching as a studio takes a beloved property from the ’80s or ’90s and retools it for a modern audience. Power Rangers fits the mold for both, and we got our first real peek at the project, courtesy of NYCC.
Helmed by Project Almanac director, Dean Israelite, the debut trailer introduces a veritable superhero Breakfast Club: Our teen heroes first meet in weekend detention at their high school, later stumbling on an alien artifact in the woods that grants them their powers. Taking the cheesy action-oriented story from the original TV series and converting it into a palatable blockbuster will be a tall order all told, but we’ve at least already seen it done once before.
4. Tons of new information on NBC’s Emerald City series
NBC’s Emerald City had a huge presence at NYCC, hosting a panel jam-packed with updates on what’s to come for the series’ debut in January 2017. Based on L. Frank Baum’s original The Wonderful Wizard of Oz novel, the show will feature an ethnically diverse cast of characters, from an Hispanic Dorothy to an African-American wicked witch. Showrunner Tarsem Singh will direct all 10 episodes of the debut season, citing a massive scope that requires a single creative presence at the helm throughout the initial run.
According to those who were at the panel, NBC screened 40 minutes of the two hour pilot, showing the audience an Oz that’s “much bloodier, darker, and more complex than the original.” All in all, it makes for a huge investment on the part of NBC, who clearly sees Emerald City as a potential flagship series for their network.
5. Iron Fist
We’re still buzzing from the recent release of Luke Cage, but Marvel already has its next series on tap for us. Iron Fist will arrive on Netflix March 17, 2017. Once it does, it will continue the MCU’s plunge into the supernatural, with its titular hero’s powers rooted in Eastern mysticism.
Finn Jones plays Danny Rand, a man chosen to hold the power of the Iron Fist, giving him enhanced physical abilities that turn him into the equivalent of a human weapon. His comic book persona typically paints him as one of Luke Cage’s closest friends, but for now, his standalone Netflix series will focus entirely on his own origin story. Marvel’s first trailer shows us all that and more, including a brief cameo from Daredevil villain Madame Gao.
6. The first poster for Valerian
If the collection of new fall TV shows has taught us anything, it’s that time travel is the new “in” concept for science-fiction. Series across almost all the major networks use time travel as the focal point for a larger conflict, pointing toward a full-blown trend for the genre. And while you could accuse Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets of trying to capitalize on that, it’s worth noting that the upcoming film is based on a French comic series that predates that trend by half a century.
It stars an A-list Hollywood cast, featuring Cara Delevingne, Ethan Hawke, Clive Owen, John Goodman, and Rihanna. Factor in the creative presence of Fifth Element director Luc Besson, and we have a recipe for a sci-fi classic. The story itself follows “time-traveling agent Valerian … sent to investigate a galactic empire, along with his partner Laureline.” It’s not much, but with 50 years of source comics to dig through, it won’t be short on material.
7. Marvel adds Sigourney Weaver to the cast of The Defenders
Iron Fist wasn’t the only Marvel Netflix series with a presence at the NYCC. The studio gathered together all four of its main heroes, using that opportunity to introduce Sigourney Weaver as the primary villain for The Defenders. Details are scarce as to what villain Weaver will be playing, but there’s already been plenty of speculation as to her Defenders identity. What we do know is that Marvel has tagged a world-class actor to challenge the Defenders. The only shame is that we’ll have to wait until late-2017 to see that decision come to fruition.
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