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UPCOMING SCI-FI MOVIE ROUNDUP - SEPTEMBER 2009


 

We take a look at some upcoming sci-fi movies. . .

Shrapnel
Die Hard 4 director Len Wiseman will adapt Nick Sagan and Mark Long’s sci-fi graphic novel Shrapnel for the big screen. (Wiseman will also direct the film for Radical Pictures.)

In the future, humans have colonized the solar system and formed a Solar Alliance to control all the planets. But a rebellion breaks out on Venus. Among the rebels fighting for freedom is a former Marine, a voluntary exile, who teaches the rebels all the tricks of the art of war . . .

“I am attracted to stories about people who are heroes despite themselves,” explains Wiseman, who will make the movie in 3D. Wiseman is also preparing Motorcade and Atlantis Rising for DreamWorks as well as Gears of War for Legendary Pictures and Warner, while producing the sci-fi thriller Nonstop for DreamWorks. Busy guy.

Assault Girls
After Avalon (2001), Japanese film animator and manga writer Mamoru Oshii (Ghost in the Shell) is making a new live-action film, Assault Girls. Rinko Kikucho, Meisa Kuroki and Hinako Saeki will play three seductive huntresses roaming a post-apocalyptic desert on the trail of giant metamorphic creatures called “sand whales” that are responsible for destroying the planet. It is worth noting that Oshii has already directed two short films that are set in this universe. namely Assault Girl: Kentucky no Hinako with Hinako Saecki and Assault Girl 2 with Rinko Kikuchi. The film combines splendid visuals with high-tech special effects and fight scenes.

The Flock
Television veteran John Wells and Don Murphy (Natural Born Killers, Transformers) are set to produce a movie based on James Robert Smith’s novel The Flock. This 2006 novel tells of the discovery of a flock of giant prehistoric birds living in the Florida Everglades. When a Disney-style company wants to build a theme park on the site, an environmentalist tries to protect the birds.

Oblivion
Following a court martial, a wounded soldier is assigned to patrol a ravaged planet. He must supervise a fleet of robots and droids charged with a mission to search and destroy the vestiges of a native extraterrestrial race that has long since disappeared. His new assignment is a real drag until one day when a spaceship crashes on the planet’s surface and the hero discovers a woman survivor. She had left on a scientific mission sixty years before. To her surprise, she somehow recognizes the soldier. Together, the two must discover the truth behind the strange set of circumstances into which they have been thrown.

This is the plot for Oblivion, a new project by Joseph Kosinski (Tron Legacy). “The story is similar to Twelve Monkeys and I’m currently seeking an illustrator to create a graphic novel to precede the film,” declares Kosinski. Kosinski will co-produce the film with Barry Levine and David Fincher.

World War Robot
Jerry Bruckheimer has acquired the rights to Ashley Wood’s graphic novel, World War Robot. The story, told in the form of a journal, recounts a war waged by a small group of humans against robots on Earth, the moon and even Mars!

RoboGeisha
Following Machine Girl, RoboGeisha marks the latest collaboration between director Noboru Iguchi and special effects supervisor Yoshihiro Nishimura, director of Tokyo Gore Police. It boasts their signature style: outrageous, extravagant special effects; aggressive, hilarious gore; mind-boggling weapons, etc. The heroine is of course a humanoid robot who wields a sword with which she dispatches her adversaries. She can also able modify her appearance like a Transformer. The film is currently in postproduction.

Discipline
The 2007 science fiction novel Discipline by Paco Ahlgren describes the psychological confrontation between a man and an unseen adversary. The past, present and future of humanity hinges on this fight, which will be brought to the screen by the producers David Permut and Steve Lee Jones.

Arena
Jeff Wadlow (Cry Wolf) has been selected by the production company Summit (Twilight) to direct Arena, a film about a group of modern soldiers that are whisked away to a place outside of time. Each of them must fight to the death against the best warriors from history. The omnipotent directors of the Arena eliminate any who refuse to fight.

Twilight Zone
Twenty-six years after Twilight Zone: The Movie, co-created by Joe Dante, John Landis, George Miller and Steven Spielberg, Warner is preparing a second big screen adaptation of Rod Serling’s famous television series. Rand Ravich, creator of NBC’s Life series, producer of Confessions of a Dangerous Man and screenwriter for both Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh and Intrusion, will write the script. Leonardo DiCaprio will star. DiCaprio is also producing a gothic version of Little Red Riding Hood with a screenplay by David Leslie Johnson (Orphan).

Alien prequel
Ridley Scott, who had proposed video artist Carl Erik Rinsch (who also happens to be his daughter’s boyfriend!) as director to revive the Alien franchise for Fox, is apparently going to direct the film himself. That is unless Fox drops the project of course. Screenwriter Jon Spaihts is writing the script for this prequel to the original 1979 movie, which coincidentally is also celebrating its 30th anniversary this year.

Scott Free, Ridley and Tony Scott’s company, will produce the film.

Captain Blood
Captain Blood, the famous Warner film by Michael Curtiz starring Errol Flynn and adapted from the novel by Rafael Sabatini (Scaramouche), will soon get a sci-fi makeover. The Australian twin brothers Michael and Peter Spierig (Undead and the upcoming Daybreakers) will direct this “remake.”

Produced by Bill Gerber, this futuristic version will be set in space.

In the 1935 classic, Doctor Peter Blood, arrested for a crime he didn’t commit and condemned to slavery, stages a mutiny. He and his fellow prisoners capture a Spanish ship and become pirates.

Harvey
Spielberg plans to direct a remake of Harvey, the much-beloved 1950 starring James Stewart and Josephine Hull. The remake has been in the works already for several years. Originally based on a play by Pulitzer Prize winner Mary Chase, Harvey has been adapted for television a few times. Best-selling author Jonathan Tropper wrote the screenplay this time, his first ever. Fox acquired the rights last year and will co-produce the movie with DreamWorks.

The story relates how an amiable eccentric named Elwood P. Dowd is persuaded he has a guardian angel in the form of a Pooka, a giant rabbit named Harvey, which he alone can see, and how that relationship affects each member of his family and community. His sister seeks the help of a lawyer in an attempt to institutionalize her troublesome brother. But the tables turn and it is she who winds up in an asylum.

Shooting will begin early 2010.

The Invisible Man sequel
David Goyer has written a sequel to James Whale’s classic film The Invisible Man which he plans to direct as well. He’s been working on for two years already. “I finished the first draft of the screenplay, and I’m in the process of revising”, he reports. “Universal seems very enthusiastic - it’s a movie they want to make.”

The story relates the adventures of a British nephew of the character played by Claude Rains in the 1933 version. After he discovers his uncle’s formula for becoming invisible, the Intelligence Service recruits him during the Second World War . . .

Asteroids
Universal has purchased the rights to the classic 1979 arcade video game Asteroids. The game has recently been given a 3D update by Michael Davies in which an Earth space fleet is too busy fighting the Martians while a giant asteroid threatens our planet. Matthew Lopez will write the screenplay for this big screen version produced by Lorenzo di Bonaventura.

Wanted 2
Timur Bekmambetov has announced that he has found a way to bring Angelina Jolie’s Wanted character back from the dead for Wanted 2. This sequel will also see the return of the character played by Konstantin Khabenskiy. Khabenskiy starred in Night Watch and Day Watch, the Russian director’s previous two films. “The film should be made this autumn or winter with scenes in the US, India and Russia,” says Bekmambetov. The budget is $150 million.


 



 

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