20th Century Fox Film
Ever since Disney acquired the rights to Star Wars, the series has been in full franchise mode. But the sequel trilogy — headed by J.J. Abrams and beginning with 2015's Star Wars: Episode VII that endeavors to show how the heroes of the original tree films have been spending their time since saving the galaxy far far away — isn't the only thing planned for Star Wars. Disney is also working on producing spin-off films in conjunction with the main film series, and one of these films might center around our favorite bounty hunter Boba Fett. Jon Schnepp, director of Cartoon Network's Metalocalypse series has told AMC Movie News that Disney is planning a Boba Fett spin-off, and that original trilogy scribe, Lawrence Kasdan will be writing the project. Now, we sure do love Boba Fett (and who doesn't?), but we're not sure a character like him be at the center of his own stand-alone film.
In the original trilogy, Boba Fett was a nearly wordless bounty hunter hired by Jabba the Hutt to capture Han Solo. Even though he only speaks four lines in the Empire Strikes Back and just two words in Return of the Jedi before being launched into the maw of the Sarlaac pit, he's become a beloved figure in the Star Wars universe. But Boba's popularity isn't due to some detailed backstory or character depth. The less we knew about him the more badass he became. He was an enigma, a no-nonsense space desperado who let his actions do the talking for him. Simple storytelling let our imaginations run wild and craft him into the most dangerous man in the galaxy the way Darth Vader's exposition never could. We were told that he was the best at his job, and the scars on his armor were the best résumé. The simplicity of the character covers so much ground in characterizing him, and no matter how well they strip his armor and examine into the man inside, he will inevitably lose some of the spark and mystery that makes the character so special to begin with.
Mysteries are vital to stories. They help to make the universe intriguing and help to add texture to a fictional world, and stories are better served if they leave some things up to the audience, because if you explain away everything, then there's no room for speculation. We don't need to shine a light on every aspect of every character because some things are better left in the dark, hinted at but never confirmed. With Boba Fett, his enigmatic nature is part of his charm and is one of the best aspects of the character. Plus, anytime the Star Wars universe tries to demystify anything, it canonical answers up being way worse than the explanations already working their way around our imaginations.
For example, the Force used to be a mystical phenomenon that tied the Star Wars universe together. It was a sprawling faith-fueled energy that was one part religion, one part mythology, and one part magic. A big part of using the Force was having faith in its power without proof of its actual existence, and that faith is a big theme that informs much of the original trilogy. Much of Luke Skywalker's journey from gangly farm boy to revered Jedi involves him putting his full belief and faith into this intangible energy. In the prequels, however, the boundless energy that "surrounds us and penetrates us," this thing that "binds the galaxy together" is revealed to be just micro-organisms swimming around in everyone's blood. And, just like that, it's not special anymore. The grand ideas about faith and belief and myth are gone and are replaced with science and genetic dumb luck. Instead of telling him to believe in the force, Ben Kenobi might as well have pulled out an electron microscope and showed Luke a smear on a petri dish.
With all of this said, it's certainly possible to create a good or even a great movie with Boba Fett as the protagonist. If anyone could pull it off, it's certainly Lawrence Kasdan. But there are other characters who would be better suited for a stand-alone movie, ones who don't have as much to lose by having their backstory expanded. As I'm sure Boba Fett would agree: some things are better left unsaid.
Spanish actor Antonio Banderas is still waiting to receive the final script for his new film about the 2010 Chilean mining disaster, weeks before production is set to begin in South America. The Desperado star is set to join Martin Sheen and Rodrigo Santoro in The 33, which will document the 69 days 33 Chilean miners spent trapped underground after a shaft collapsed in 2010.
Director Patricia Riggen is expected to start shooting on location in late November (13), but Banderas suggests there may be a slight delay.
He tells Spanish news agency EFE, "Everything (for the project) started quite a while ago, more than a year-and-a-half, but so far, right now, despite having a commitment with the producers of the film, I still have not received the final script."
However, the actor can understand why screenwriters are taking their time to finish the script.
He says, "They're continuing to work on it, cleaning it up, having conversations with those people who experienced this event... Whenever you play a person who existed, along with the acting work, there's a sense of responsibility, because it's a living character."
Riggen is also still searching for a replacement to step in for Jennifer Lopez, who was reportedly forced to pull out of the drama in September (13) due to scheduling clashes with her upcoming return as a judge on reality show American Idol.
The 33 is currently scheduled for release next year (14).
May 30, 2008 5:09am EST
Jon Cryer, William H. Macy, Leslie Mann and James Spader will star in Robert Rodriguez's upcoming family comedy adventure Shorts. The film, written by Rodriguez, is set to shoot in Austin, Texas, report today’s trades.
The story is set in a fictional suburb where all the houses look the same and everyone works for Black Box, the manufacturer of the ultimate communication and do-it-all gadget.
When a young boy discovers a rainbow-colored rock that grants wishes to anyone who holds it, it causes havoc amongst the kids before turning up several notches when adults get their hands on it.
Cryer and Mann play the boy's parents while Kat Dennings is the boy's older sister. Spader is Mr. Black and Macy is the father of a germ-phobic genius.
The movie marks a big screen studio feature return for Cryer who has spent most of career in television after making a name for himself in movies like Pretty in Pink. He co-starred with Spader in Pink who has also made a name for himself on TV with his Emmy-winning turn in Boston Legal.
Cryer also recently joined the cast of the comedy Stay Cool with Winona Ryder, Sean Astin and Chevy Chase while Macy recently finished Lonely Maiden with Morgan Freeman and Christopher Walken.
Rodriguez has easily moved back and forth between action and genre films (Sin City, Planet Terror, Desperado) and family flicks (the Spy Kids films, The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D).
Director Robert Rodriguez and his favorite leading man Antonio Banderas, hot off the hit film Spy Kids, will reteam for Once Upon a Time in Mexico for Dimension Films. Continuing the trilogy that began with Rodriguez's El Mariachi and Desperado, the new film is loosely based on the spaghetti Western classic The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. Rodriguez told the Hollywood Reporter that he will return to a more "down and dirty, more experimental style of shooting" as he displayed in the first film El Mariachi. Quentin Tarantino and Salma Hayek are in talks to reprise their roles, with Mickey Rourke also joining the cast.
The second of NBC's "Desperado" westerns continues the adventures of roving cowboy Duell McCall. The television movie begins with McCall on the run, having been framed for murder. He finds his way to the town of Beauty. He ends up fighting on behalf of a group of black homesteaders who are being deprived of their property by a tyrannical landowner.