Hero Express: Ben Kingsley in ‘IM3’, ‘Powers’ Pilot Recast, and the Spidey/Avengers Clipshow Finale!

Welcome back to the Hero Express, your one-stop sometimes SPOILER filled shop through the top five stories in comic based Film & TV news!

Ben Kingsley To Play the Villain in Iron Man 3!

Shane Black’s Iron Man 3 is getting into full swing as Kingsley has signed on opposite RDJ. No word yet on who he will be playing, except the word is it won’t be the Mandarin. Splashpage reports, with a few interesting suggestions as to who Kingsley may be portraying. I’ll pick my two favorite of their selections and you can check out the link for the rest:

Rumors of the English Oscar-winner playing Stark’s greatest foe, The Mandarin, were quickly dismissed as the threequel is said to be loosely based on Warren Ellis’ run on “Invincible Iron Man” called “Extremis.” Be that as it may, there are still a ton of interesting Iron Man villains who would be awesome to see up on the big screen, villains whose shoes we could easily see Kingsley filling.

As if he’s not playing Mandarin…

» Ghost
This raving anticapitalist saboteur has gained much notoriety since his indunction into the Thunderbolts during 2009’s “Dark Reign.” Not much is known about this mysterious madman’s past, other than the fact that he used to be an engineer/programmer at an IT company called Omnisapient. In addition to being highly intelligent, Ghost’s battle suit grants him the ability to become intangible and hack/reprogram all matters of electronic systems in his immediate vicinity.

» Controller
Basil Sandhurst was an electro-mechanical/chemical research scientist until his obsession with control put him at odds with the rest of his coworkers. Fusing a strength-enhancing exoskeleton to his body and deeming himself “The Controller,” Basil drains the cerebral energy of those around him utilizing slave discs that are directly connected to the micro-circuitry in his helmet. Even without the discs, he can psionically control those who are “weak-willed” and has limited telekinetic abilities.

Both of these characters are totally plausible, especially with news that Iron Man 3 may have a lot  to do with nano-technology, but c’mon! No Mandarin? I mean, Iron Man’s most polar opposite evil arch-enemy ever, and there’s no room for him in a TRILOGY of movies?. Kind of a disappointment. Or it could just be a clever way of throwing us all off. Either way, if it is based loosely on Extremis, we could have some very cool armor action ahead of us.

Although probably not this cool…

Disney Planning An Animated Marvel Movie?

When Marvel was bought by Disney, a lot of speculation began about whether or not we would see some animated Marvel movies, knowing Disney (and Pixar’s) history. There’s been a lot of back and forth, with some saying it might not be Pixar, but nothing concrete has popped up. Then a couple of comments were put together that seem to tease a bit more on the possibility of a Marvel/Disney animated movie. /Film reports:

…the chatter centers on Animation filmmaker Don Hall’s secret project.

For those of you who don’t follow the Animation industry closely, Hall has been a staple at Walt Disney Animation for the last decade. He was a writer and story artist on Disney’s Tarzan and The Emperor’s New Grove, he worked as a character designer on Chicken Little, a writer on Meet the Robinsons, a writer/story supervisor on The Princess and the Frog, and finally made his directorial debut with the 2011 film Winnie The Pooh (which he also wrote).

In July, Blue Sky Disney was the first to report on his next project:

That project, once announced will generate a lot of buzz in certain geek communities, as it’s going to surprise a lot of people for what it is and what it’s not. But it’s in the very early embryonic stage and it depends on how well the project is received upon the presentation that is being prepared for John [Lasster] and Ed [Catmull].

We didn’t connect the dots at the time, but its now rumored that the project might be connected to the Marvel Universe. Last week Blue Sky teased the secret project yet again:

The projects competing for 2014/2015 are the uber-secret film from Don Hall, which will be a marvelously unexpected project if it ever gets the green light, and Nathan Greno and Byron Howard’s films which are deep in development.

So some very suggestive phrasing that could lead to something huge maybe? I for one think it might be the greatest thing to come from the Disney/Marvel merger. How much cooler would the Fantastic Four movie be with some of The Incredibles style brought to it?

Much, much cooler than this was.

Powers TV Pilot May Have Been Completely Recast!

This pilot has been underway for a while, and is something the studio apparently really wants to see made and made right. So when news of a reshoot came along I was worried but still anticipating something great. I love Powers, but it certainly isn’t the easiest property to bring to TV. Now (uncomfirmed) reports are saying the studio wants to go ‘back to formula’ and start all over again. Splashpage reports:

(I)n a video interview shot at WonderCon, actor Khary Payton, who played Cutter in the pilot, indicated that FX is going back to square one.

“The higher ups want to do this so badly because they know it’s going to be the coolest thing on television,” he said. “But it’s hard. It’s a hard concept, I think, to get. And they had to step back and start over again. From what I hear, the plan is still moving forward.”

“Unfortunately, we – all of the actors – got released,” he continued. “They’re literally starting over. They want to do it again. And fortunately and unfortunately, I’m doing another show, and I still hope beyond hope that I can be a part of ‘Powers.’ But I’m happy to be working. But things are happening with ‘Powers’ absolutely. There are scripts being turned out. They just want more material to hear that they’re getting it right.”

With only one actor’s word to show for it, the exact details were a little fuzzy. CBR didn’t get a comment from Jason Patric, previously cast as series protagonist Christian Walker, and the network was expectedly vague. “I won’t comment on any of the actors contracts, but I’ll tell you this project is not dead, and it is still to be determined if we’ll move forward with reshoots on the pilot,” a representative from FX told CBR. “There is currently no timetable on when to move forward.”

Not the most reassuring news, but clearly the studio is behind it. With The Walking Dead killing ratings its no surprise FX wants to get in on the action. Here’s hoping Powers makes it to screening, because I would love to see it.

The Amazing Spider-Man Clipshow Finale!

I got clips for ya. Lot’s of clips. In between the clips we’ll talk about Marc Webb‘s thought on the possibly different origin of Spider-Man? From SuperHeroHype (clips from GammaSquad):

Fans worried that his upcoming The Amazing Spider-Man will re-tread familiar origin territory need not fret, says director Marc Webb in an interview today with MTV. His take on the origins of Peter Parker’s spectacular spider-powers will be a significant departure from the ground covered in Sam Raimi’s 2002 original film. In fact, Webb reveals, the origin story will even span multiple installments.

“I wanted to give the audience something new,” Webb tells the outlet, “so that started off with getting underneath the parents’ story, which will unfold over probably a few movies. We don’t totally wrap up that story in this first movie. It’s sort of an ongoing mystery.”

“[There are] obligations to the canon,” Webb explains, “in terms of Uncle Ben and the spider-bite, but the conditions under which those things happen are very different… The character is evolving in a different way. It’s about finding a balance between iconic elements of the ‘Spider-Man’ mythology—like how Uncle Ben’s death transforms him emotionally — but it happens in a different way.”

“He’s bitten by a spider,” Webb says, “but maybe it’s not a radioactive spider. Or maybe it is! You’ll have to see.”

At a time when the origin story has been played out and doesn’t totally work as well as it used to, I think its a great idea to keep it fresh and carry it through a movie or two instead of cramming it all into one film. Especially having already seen a version of the origin in Raimi’s trilogy.  The Clipshow Finale carries on!

The Avengers Clipshow Finale!

More clips. I’m sure you already saw the new TV spot as well as the bouncy clip featuring Black Widow, and if not you can check them here. Marvel certainly is pulling out all the marketing stops as I have 2 TV Spots, a new clip, and a Dr. pepper commercial for you. There’s a lot of footage we’ve already seen, but its good to see the work being put into promotion of the film. Enjoy!


`And over at SuperHeroHype they have a brand new clip featuring Tony Stark & Loki squaring off (I’ll post once I find an embeddable copy) plus a behind-the scenes featurette!

Whew, that is a lot of TV spots. And that’s it for this edition of the Hero Express!

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