John McNaughton, the man who directed 1998 schlock noir masterpiece Wild Things, hasn't had a feature film come out since 2001, but it looks like he's going to make a return to the cinema (and I use the term loosely) with a spectacle that might even top the Neve Campbell/Denise Richards soaking wet pool makeout moment from the original.
McNaughton tells Hollywood.com that he and screenwriter Stephen Peters, who wrote the original as well as direct-to-DVD sequels Wild Things 2 and Wild Things: Diamonds in the Rough, are working on another Wild Things movie.
"It's not one of the sequels, but about their children," he says. OK, that sounds odd, but just wait. It gets real crazy. "Do you know the Amanda Knox case? It's something like that. Something that's like the child of Suzie Toller [Campbell's character], she claimed that Matt Dillon's [character] had raped her a long time ago and maybe there is a child and maybe Bill Murray's character had a child and they're exchange students and things get out of hand. We're calling it Wild Child Things."
OK, this movie needs to get made right away! It sounds so unbelievably outrageous that it has to be awesome. For those of you know don't know, Amanda Knox was an American college student studying in Italy who went to prison for murdering her roommate. She was later acquitted. There was S&M involved.
Wild Child Things doesn't have a studio or distributor or a cast (but, let's face it, Neve Campbell is super available as is Denise Richards), and is just starting to take shape. "Just about 3 weeks ago, Steven Peters' manager, sent me an email saying he had this idea and he sent me a one page outline and I think it's pretty fun. We're trying to see if there's any interest." Well, John, consider this your first bit of interest.
Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan
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Raise your hand if you thought that Daryl Dixon was going to die on last night's episode of The Walking Dead. Good. Now, take that same hand and smack yourself with it — because that was a really dumb prediction. The gang behind TWD doesn't know how to hold on to their showrunners, but they know to not kill the most popular character on their show. Also, biceps. Moving on.
Last night's episode, "The Suicide King," was all about trust, and family, and the various things that can tear a family apart, and really just how you shouldn't trust anybody at all, ever, because they'll beat you with a shovel or not kill the guy who sexually assaulted your girlfriend. Everybody but zombie-bait Beth and Hershel the Wise is now angry at and/or not trusting someone, and Rick Grimes, God bless him, has finally gone completely bananas — and without Daryl "Unlikely Voice of Reason" Dixon by his side, things are looking grim for the Gang of Grimes. (But wait, can't we say that every week?)
Before we get started on the Dixon showdown and the various new factions that exist within the show, I want to talk about how much I love Chad Coleman AKA Tyreese AKA Cutty from The Wire on this show, already. This may be because he's essentially playing a zombie apocalypse version of Cutty from The Wire, or because Carol said "Daryl has his code — this world needs men like that" and that had me thinking about Omar from The Wire with his code and his shotgun, and how Daryl's kind of like that with his cross-bow, only Daryl's not gay (I think) and he doesn't murder drug dealers. Okay, so maybe Daryl's not that much like Omar from The Wire, but he is one of the few characters on the show with an open heart and a firm moral code, so yeah. I guess the point is that I want to watch The Wire. Also, I'm tired.
The only thing that can get in the way of Daryl's good ol' moral code is his brother Merle, so it's unfortunate that both brothers walked away from the death match over in Woodbury. We never got to find out if either brother was capable of killing the other, though it didn't seem like it. Maybe Daryl would have fought harder if Merle had kept kicking him, but when Merle looked at him and said "just follow my lead, little brother," Daryl was relieved to do so. They fought with the zombies the Governor had added to the spectacle, giving in to the audience's thirst for blood for jusssstttt enough time for them to get rescued.
Then things got sort of weird. Back at the highway, everyone bickered over who should stay, and who should go. Everyone basically agreed that Michonne — who finally admitted via scowl that she knew Andrea — was untrustworthy and needed to go, eventually. Fine enough. But why would Merle — who was A, absolutely delighted to be there and B, the only person around who knew everything about their evil genius mortal enemy the Governor, be set free? Like, couldn't Rick have brought him back to the prison to torture him for information? Rick Grimes: good with a pistol, absolutely terrible at decision making. But more on that later. Let's talk about Daryl.
NEXT: Rick is totally losing it, and Daryl is Rihanna.
Uggggh Daryl — but we've worked so hard! Carol's face said it all, later in the episode, when she learned that Daryl had chosen to go off with Merle. Carol had also been abused and belittled and made to feel like she was nothing, and though she wanted to think that she'd walk away from her husband if he magically came a'knockin, she knew that facing an abuser wasn't easy. Daryl had been tested, and he did not walk away from his abuser. See, even studly guys with crossbows and biceps — just like multi-millionaire popstars with scandalous Instagram accounts — have their weaknesses. The strong, capable, baby-holding leader is (temporarily, I hope) gone, replaced with the wounded little brother of yesteryear. Maybe it was the simple fact that Merle didn't kill him that put Daryl firmly back in his big brother's corner, but, like, again — we weren't given enough time to find out if Merle would have killed him if they weren't given such an easy way out. I'm so so grateful that Daryl is alive and all, but I wish we'd had a few more minutes to see what might have happened before Maggie and Rick came in with their sniper rifles. Dramatic sigh.
But, I guess, screw me and my love of instant gratification. Because now that the Dixon bros — #TheWalkingDixons — are alone in the woods, yet again, their issues are going to rise to the surface like Neve Campbell and Denise Richards on the poster for the film Wild Things. One brother will inevitably kill the other, and by this I mean that Daryl is totally going to kill Merle because I can't imagine a reality without Daryl in it. I refuse. The death ring in Woodbury may have been a short-lived, cliffhanger-friendly ruse, but the metaphorical death ring is just beginning. I mean, it won't be long before they inevitably meet up with the Grimes Gang and Woodbury again anways, because — just like how in the Tom Hooper film Les Misérables the entire city of Paris is like five blocks and everybody knows each other — in The Walking Dead the entire American South is the size of my hometown of Collingswood, NJ (two square miles, I think) and everyone just bumps into each other during hunts and formula runs.
Now, let's talk about Rick. Here is your current list of people whom Rick is refusing to trust — Cutty from The Wire. (Okay, fine, Tyreese.) Merle Dixon. Michonne. The Governor, but that one's a given. I mean, he's pretty justified on all of the ones except for the first, but it's become clear that the death of Lori and all of the human-on-human violence he's had to enact over the last few seasons has finally taken a toll on the man. Michael Raymond James in the bar last year. Tomas in the prison. Everyone, at Woodbury. Rick, our steadfast hero, is being driven mad not only by his wife's death, but by the crushing weight of having to make all of the decisions on who lives, and who dies. Yes, if he lets Tyreese and co. go free he's not technically murdering them, but he's sealing their death warrant. But if they stay, of course, they could hurt one of his people. It's happened before.
Before all of this zombie stuff went down, Rick had a firm set of laws he could easily live with. He didn't make the rules; they were written out for him. The small town "bad guys" were locked away, and what made someone a bad guy was not so ambiguous. It's impossible for a man like Rick to live in this world. Rick is not a Daryl. He can't suddenly create his own code of what's right and wrong, stick to his gut, and move on with it. He can't pull a Shane/The Governor — becoming a no-rules, Wild Wild West gunslinger, and still sleep at night. Rick needs to be the hero, and needs to know that he was in the right. And now, he no longer has a Shane to be the shoulder-devil to his angel, and he no longer has Lori to tell him what a good person he is (because she was killed, as a result of one of Rick's decisions). When Shane was around to play the role of bad cop, it gave Rick the opportunity to always play good cop. For viewers, it was boring. But now, for Rick, it's maddening. He has to be both cops. He has to accept moral ambiguities. And letting Merle back to the prison would have led to more death and more torture and more things that Rick just does not want to deal with, so he set him free. And that, my friends, was a terrible decision.
So, basically what I'm trying to say is that the situation with Tyreese is impossible, and that someone like Hershel or Maggie or baby Asskicker should start making more decisions for the Gang. Rick has to either trust Tyreese completely, or send him to his death. (A viable option, being that we learned that half of Tyreese's gang — the white half— are douchebags.) Then, move forward and stop thinking about it. The more Rick tortures himself about his own decisions, the less likely it becomes that he can actually defeat someone like the Governor. Like, now Rick is seeing Dead Lori in a wedding dress, which, I mean — please let this be a one-time occurance. Lori is dead. Gone. The Grimes Gang is better for it. Let's move on. Also, it's really hard to come up with an effective war strategy when you're having imaginary phone conversations and seeing dead people. I know this, because I've played Risk on mushrooms. (No, I have not.)
NEXT: The Friday Night Lights defense.
Now, let's discuss someone who is undergoing a much different transformation: Glenn. Glenn has always been naive and relatively innocent for a kid living in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, and the hard things he's had to do — mainly, with that kid from the bar last year — have been extremely rough on him. He's been fine with not doing the decision-making. He's brave, and he'll go along on the most dangerous of missions, but it's not up to him when it comes to who lives and who dies. Well, not anymore. Glenn's going to go after that Governor, whether Rick wants him to or not. Yes, it was Maggie's innocence that was ripped away when the Governor assaulted her at Woodbury, but Glenn's the one who is going to let his own rage get the better of him. He's already pulling away from Maggie, and he was ready to turn that car around and go after the Governor even though that would have been the stupidest thing ever. Think about your life, Glenn. Think about your choices. Obviously, since — as Rick said — they had "started something" last night, a big battle with Woodbury is a'brewin. But with their lack of troops and resources, it would have been stupid for them to go back, even though the Governor did something that, to Glenn, demanded an immediate execution.
So Glenn is like, super intense now. And I enjoy this Glenn. It's going to cause a division between him and Maggie — who just wants to get over it, and keep living — but I dig the passion, and the lack of wishy-washiness (read: boringness) that has defined his character for so long. "My blood, my family, is waiting for us back at the prison," he said definitively, as Daryl tried to justify keeping Merle. Glenn is like a freaking Soprano now. If you mess with his crew, his speedy little ass is coming after you with a glock, and he also might just kick your head in in a state of blind rage JUST FOR THE FUN OF IT.
Finally, there's Woodbury. The Governor has now pulled a complete 180 re: his leadership tactics — a fact which was thrown in our face with neon lights when he slowly, nonchalantly, walked through the death pit/shoot-out madness with a single gun, and then later shot a bitten townsfolk in the head with no grand speech or even explanation. All he cares about at this point is killing the Grimes Gang, who are currently a hot mess so hey, maybe he'll win and Season 4 will just be David Morrissey walking alone with his daughter's zombie corpse through a burnt desolate wasteland a la The Road. Either way, he's no longer a leader — he's just sitting in his apartment, quietly plotting Rick's demise like Cartman did with Scott Tenorman after Scott sold him his pubes for ten dollars.
But you know what? There's a new sheriff in town, and her name is Andrea. Andrea wasn't happy to see Woodbury falling apart after the raid, so she decided to pull her best Barack Obama (or Coach Taylor?) and muster up some Americana-style enthusiasm. "Years from now, when they write about this plague in the history books, they will write about Woodbury," she said to the panicking people. And you know what? It worked! They calmed down, and then Beyonce sang the National Anthem as Landry Clarke of the East Dillon Lions scored the touchdown that would win the game. And the whole time, the Governor just glared. He glared at Andrea from up high in his seclusion, watching as she stole his people — the people he never actually cared about. He would no longer have them, because he didn't want them. But that doesn't mean that Andrea could have him. No, the Governor is going to kill the folks of Woodbury, methinks. Some men just want to watch the world burn.
And with that, I go to bed. What did you think of the episode, friends? Are you excited for the Dixon bros. road trip? Do you care at all about Michonne? Is Rick really actually a good leader and I'm just a big ol' meanie? Let me know in the comments. Thanks.
Follow Shaunna on Twitter @HWShaunna
[PHOTO CREDIT: Gene Page/AMC]
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The first and most important thing you should know about Paramount Pictures’ Thor is that it’s not a laughably corny comic book adaptation. Though you might find it hokey to hear a bunch of muscled heroes talk like British royalty while walking around the American Southwest in LARP garb director Kenneth Branagh has condensed vast Marvel mythology to make an accessible straightforward fantasy epic. Like most films of its ilk I’ve got some issues with its internal logic aesthetic and dialogue but the flaws didn’t keep me from having fun with this extra dimensional adventure.
Taking notes from fellow Avenger Iron Man the story begins with an enthralling event that takes place in a remote desert but quickly jumps back in time to tell the prologue which introduces the audience to the shining kingdom of Asgard and its various champions. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) son of Odin is heir to the throne but is an arrogant overeager and ill-tempered rogue whose aggressive antics threaten a shaky truce between his people and the frost giants of Jotunheim one of the universe’s many realms. Odin (played with aristocratic boldness by Anthony Hopkins) enraged by his son’s blatant disregard of his orders to forgo an assault on their enemies after they attempt to reclaim a powerful artifact banishes the boy to a life among the mortals of Earth leaving Asgard defenseless against the treachery of Loki his mischievous “other son” who’s always felt inferior to Thor. Powerless and confused the disgraced Prince finds unlikely allies in a trio of scientists (Natalie Portman Stellan Skarsgard and Kat Dennings) who help him reclaim his former glory and defend our world from total destruction.
Individually the make-up visual effects CGI production design and art direction are all wondrous to behold but when fused together to create larger-than-life set pieces and action sequences the collaborative result is often unharmonious. I’m not knocking the 3D presentation; unlike 2010’s genre counterpart Clash of the Titans the filmmakers had plenty of time to perfect the third dimension and there are only a few moments that make the decision to convert look like it was a bad one. It’s the unavoidable overload of visual trickery that’s to blame for the frost giants’ icy weaponized constructs and other hybrids of the production looking noticeably artificial. Though there’s some imagery to nitpick the same can’t be said of Thor’s thunderous sound design which is amped with enough wattage to power The Avengers’ headquarters for a century.
Chock full of nods to the comics the screenplay is both a strength and weakness for the film. The story is well sequenced giving the audience enough time between action scenes to grasp the characters motivations and the plot but there are tangential narrative threads that disrupt the focus of the film. Chief amongst them is the frost giants’ fore mentioned relic which is given lots of attention in the first act but has little effect on the outcome. In addition I felt that S.H.I.E.L.D. was nearly irrelevant this time around; other than introducing Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye the secret security faction just gets in the way of the movie’s momentum.
While most of the comedy crashes and burns there are a few laughs to be found in the film. Most come from star Hemsworth’s charismatic portrayal of the God of Thunder. He plays up the stranger-in-a-strange-land aspect of the story with his cavalier but charming attitude and by breaking all rules of diner etiquette in a particularly funny scene with the scientists whose respective roles as love interest (Portman) friendly father figure (Skarsgaard) and POV character (Dennings) are ripped right out of a screenwriters handbook.
Though he handles the humorous moments without a problem Hemsworth struggles with some of the more dramatic scenes in the movie; the result of over-acting and too much time spent on the Australian soap opera Home and Away. Luckily he’s surrounded by a stellar supporting cast that fills the void. Most impressive is Tom Hiddleston who gives a truly humanistic performance as the jealous Loki. His arc steeped in Shakespearean tragedy (like Thor’s) drums up genuine sympathy that one rarely has for a comic book movie villain.
My grievances with the technical aspects of the production aside Branagh has succeeded in further exploring the Marvel Universe with a film that works both as a standalone superhero flick and as the next chapter in the story of The Avengers. Thor is very much a comic book film and doesn’t hide from the reputation that its predecessors have given the sub-genre or the tropes that define it. Balanced pretty evenly between “serious” and “silly ” its scope is large enough to please fans well versed in the source material but its tone is light enough to make it a mainstream hit.
The God of Legion secular Hollywood’s latest Biblically-inspired action flick is old-school an angry spiteful Almighty with a penchant for Old Testament theatrics. Fed up with humanity’s decadent warmongering ways He’s decided to pull the plug on the whole crazy experiment and start over from scratch.
Fortunately for us the God of Legion is also a rather lazy fellow. Instead of doing the apocalyptic work himself and wiping us out with a giant flood which worked perfectly well last time He opts to delegate the task to His army of angels — a questionable strategy that starts to fall apart when the archangel charged with leading the planned extermination Michael (Paul Bettany) refuses to comply.
Michael who unlike his boss still harbors affection for our sorry species abandons his post and descends to earth where inside the swollen belly of Charlie (Adrianne Palicki) an unwed mother-to-be working as a waitress in an out-of-the-way diner sits humanity’s lone hope for survival. Why is this particular baby so important? Is it the one destined to lead us to victory over Skynet? Heaven knows — Legion reveals little details its script devoid of actual scripture. What is clear is that God’s celestial hitmen want the kid whacked before it’s born.
But Michael won’t let humanity fall without a fight. Armed with a Waco-sized arsenal of assault weapons he hunkers down with the diner’s patrons a largely superfluous collection of thinly-sketched caricatures from various demographic groups led by Dennis Quaid as the diner’s grizzled owner Tyrese Gibson as a hip-hop hustler and Lucas Black as a simple-minded country boy.
Together they mount a heroic final stand against hordes of angels who’ve taken possession of “weak-willed” humans turning kindly old grandmas and mild-mannered ice cream vendors into snarling ravenous foul-mouthed beasts. They descend upon the ramshackle diner in a series of full-frontal assaults commanded by the archangel Gabriel (Kevin Durand) the George Pickett of End of Days generals.
Beneath its superficial religious facade Legion is really just a run-of-the-mill zombie flick a Biblical I Am Legend. Bettany an actor accustomed to smaller dramatic roles in films like A Beautiful Mind and The Da Vinci Code looks perfectly at ease in his first major action role wielding machine guns and bowie knives with equal aplomb. Conversely first-time director Scott Stewart a former visual effects artist does little to prove himself worthy of such a promotion serving up some impressive CGI work but not much else worthy of note.
Denise Richards and Neve Campbell are set to re-team for another steamy installment of hit film Wild Things.
The 1998 thriller also starred Matt Dillon, Kevin Bacon and Bill Murray.
Producers are currently working to recruit other former cast members for the new film, called Backstabbers.
The new movie will focus on a rich New York man who masterminds his wife's kidnapping, unaware that his mistress and bodyguard are going to double-cross him.
Although Backstabbers reunites the cast from Wild Things, it's not being billed as a sequel because Wild Things 2 has already been made as a straight-to-video production without any cast members from the original.
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Five years ago, “Waterworld” threatened to destroy Kevin Costner’s career, what with all the negative press surrounding its budget overruns, logistical filming problems and on-set rifts. And the film reportedly did destroy Costner’s working relationship with Kevin Reynolds, the director who had previously worked with the star on "Fandango" and "Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves." (Remember that, after Reynolds finished shooting "Waterworld," Costner fired him and edited the picture himself -- and threw in some CGI effects to enhance his own receding hairline.)
But now that’s all water under the bridge (pardon the pun). According to Variety, Costner and Reynolds are seriously thinking about working together again and -- get this -- the movie they want to make takes place mostly at sea.
Reynolds and Costner would reteam for "Okracoke," a historical drama written by "Shakespeare in Love" co-screenwriter Marc Norman. It’s the story of a disgraced British naval captain who redeems himself by hunting down the pirate Blackbeard.
MORE MOORE: The classiest 007 is back! Roger Moore will return to the big screen playing a spy in “The Enemy,” according to Reuters. “I need to make a film occasionally, otherwise people say, 'He must be retired,'” the 72-year-old erstwhile James Bond said.
SEAFOOD DIET: John Travolta will play the villain in "Swordfish," a new movie by "Kalifornia" director Dominic Sena, which starts shooting in July, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
ON THE VERGE: The Reporter also notes that Faye Dunaway plans to make a movie with Oscar-winning director Pedro Almodovar. Nothing is lined up yet, but Dunaway likes the Spaniard’s way with women. "He’s one of the few directors with the sensitivity to direct actresses," she says.
NOT SO CONGENIAL: Matt Dillon has backed out of a starring role in "Miss Congeniality," in which he was set to play an FBI agent opposite Sandra Bullock. Variety says that Dillon was attached to the film for a mere four days, from April 11 to April 14.
SUMMER STOCK: As a warm-up to his upcoming stint on "Spin City," Variety reports that Charlie Sheen will star in a romantic comedy "Good Advice," which shoots this summer.
SEE YOU ON CABLE: Nick Nolte, Neve Campbell and Robin Tunney have signed to star in the low-budget comedy-drama “Investigating Sex.” Nolte will play a researcher leading a sex study, while Campbell and Tunney will play stenographers transcribing "erotically charged discussions," according to the Reporter. One thing leads to another and, you guessed it, the researchers and the stenographers soon have more than a working relationship.