It's official: 'Hobbit' greenlighted

Fri Oct 15, 2010 @ 05:39PM PST

The announcement, made jointly by New Line president and COO Toby Emmerich, Warner Bros. president and COO Alan Horn, and MGM co-CEO Steve Cooper, says the "the two films based on 'The Hobbit' are now greenlit and will begin principal photography in February 2011, under the direction of Peter Jackson."

The announcement does not mean, however, that the labor issue acting as a hurdle for the production has been resolved. And it's the resolution of that dispute which will determine where the movie will shoot.

The dispute lies between Jackson and an array of unions, including New Zealand Actors’ Equity and SAG. A “do not work” order is in place on the production, which has refused to recognize union jurisdiction for local actors. Discussions in New Zealand are being facilitated by that country’s government, with little progress reported to date. SAG would not comment on whether it is involved in negotiations.

If the movie does not shoot in New Zealand, the country where Jackson made his "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, the filmmaker said Warners are looking at five different locales around the world to host the project.

 - Borys Kit

'Drive Angry 3D' trailer hits

Fri Oct 15, 2010 @ 01:41PM PST

Wow, I can't believe how bad this trailer is. And I'm someone who wants to see this movie, which is a Nicolas Cage action movie.

It's really the first half of the trailer that is the worst, with the voice-over making it seem like a parody trailer from "Grindhouse." Things get considerable better when Amber Heard comes into the picture, and it's got some not-bad end notes, but still.


'Hobbit' could start shooting as soon as February

Fri Oct 15, 2010 @ 11:41AM PST

Peter Jackson’s adaptation of “The Hobbit” will likely start shooting in February, if it can overcome one key hurdle. 

Warner Bros. and MGM, which is acting as co-financing partner, have reached a deal that will see the adaptation, which is being planned as two movies, finally go before cameras after months of wrangling over how financially beleaguered MGM would cover its half of the production, estimated to cost around $500 million and be shot in 3D.

Neither New Line nor MGM would comment, but sources said MGM is coming up with its half by talking to other money wells, with one option being getting another studio to handle foreign distribution for MGM. If that doesn’t work, Warners will loan MGM the money, but that would mean ceding some distribution rights to the Burbank studio. 

The one thing holding things up now is the labor dispute between Jackson on one side and the Screen Actors Guild and other acting unions on the other. Some members of the latter are telling its members not to work on the movie, claiming it’s a non-union production. SAG will not comment whether or not any negotiations are ongoing.

This hurdle, “a big, big deal,” according to “Hobbit” insiders could scrap the production or at least move it out of New Zealand, which would mean another delay.

Despite all the turmoil, pre-production on the movie has been going on for months, even before Jackson took over the directing reigns from Guillermo del Toro in June and has been meeting with actors since July. Martin Freeman is expected to play lead Hobbit Bilbo Baggins with Ian McKellen reprising his “Lord of the Rings” trilogy role as Gandalf.

- Borys Kit

Vanessa Hudgens strapping on for 'Journey 2' (exclusive)

Thu Oct 14, 2010 @ 08:27PM PST

Vanessa Hudgens is in final negotiations to play the female lead in New Line’s “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island,” the sequel to “Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D.”

Brad Peyton is on board to direct the film, in which Josh Hutcherson is reprising his role as burgeoning explorer Sean Anderson. Dwayne Johnson is also starring in the pic being produced by Beau Flynn and Tripp Vinson of Contrafilm. Charlotte Huggins is also producing.

Read More »

'Hulk' heading back to TV! 'Cloak and Dagger' TV show also being developed

Thu Oct 14, 2010 @ 07:00PM PST

Green_hulk_341x182 By Borys Kit and James Hibberd

Who’s ready for another Hulk TV series?

As DC Comics heroine Wonder Woman, who had a TV series during the 1970s, is being prepped for a return to the small screen, Marvel and ABC are developing a TV return for the Incredible Hulk. CBS produced a memorable series featuring the jade giant that ran from 1978-82 and starred Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno.

At the end of the decade, ABC followed up with three TV movies that featured incarnations of Marvel heroes Daredevil and Thor.

Hulk is one of two projects that are priorities at Marvel Television, Marvel Studio’s TV division, which has been operating under the radar since Jeph Loeb took the reins at the end of June. The second hot property is Cloak and Dagger, which is being developed as a possible show for ABC Family.

Both are in the early stages of development; Hulk has a “showrunner wanted” placard around its neck, meanwhile, Loeb is meeting with writers to hear ideas for Cloak and Dagger.

Read More »

Amy Adams, Chris Cooper, Rashida Jones joining Muppet movie (exclusive)

Thu Oct 14, 2010 @ 04:37PM PST

Adams_cooper_jones_2010_341x172 Amy Adams, Chris Cooper and  Rashida Jones are in negotiations to join Disney’s untitled Muppet movie.

Jason Segel is the human lead in the movie, being directed by James Bobin and eyeing a November start in Los Angeles. 

The story, by Segel and Nicholas Stoller, sees those wacky Muppets reunite to put on a show in order to save a movie studio.

Adams will play Segel’s girlfriend, who joins him in the quest to gather the Muppets.

Cooper is the greedy villain, who wants to buys the studio to dig for the oil hiding underneath it and who never thought the Muppets were funny to begin with.

Jones would play an ABC exec.

Mandeville’s David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman are producing.

Secret Origin: How 'Red' escaped Warner Bros.

Wed Oct 13, 2010 @ 10:49PM PST

Red_freeman_willis_malkovich_341x182 If Summit’s new action movie, starring seasoned performers Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren and John Malkovich, scores with audiences this weekend, Warners likely will be seeing “RED.”

That’s because the studio repeatedly passed on the project, which was developed from a DC Comics title.

Tracking suggests that “RED” will post a solid opening — in the low- to mid-$20 million range. The movie had its first test screening prior to Comic-Con, which it passed with flying colors.

Read More »

In other comic book movie news...

Wed Oct 13, 2010 @ 06:43PM PST

1) Tom Hardy has been offered a role in the third Christopher Nolan-directed Batman movie is the word on Hollywood Blvd. Deadline has the deal as done, although both Warners and CAA, which reps Hardy, have no comment.

Most insiders have him pegged to play Batman villain the Riddler, although a month ago Joseph Gordon-Levitt's name was associated with the role.

Read More »

Evans, Eve join Cusack in 'The Raven' (exclusive)

Tue Oct 12, 2010 @ 08:29PM PST

Alice_eve_luke_evans_101210_341x172 Luke Evans and Alice Eve are in negotiations to star opposite John Cusack in “The Raven,” the Edgar Allen Poe-centered period thriller being directed by James McTeigue.

Evans steps into the shoes vacated by Jeremy Renner, who was slated to star in the pic but segued to “Mission: Impossible 4” in late August.

Read More »

Who wants to see Guillermo del Toro and Edgar Wright talk about 'Scott Pilgrim'?

Tue Oct 12, 2010 @ 07:01PM PST

With "Scott Pigrim vs. the World" coming out on DVD and Blu-ray Nov. 9, Universal Studios Home Entertainment is putting on a special screening of the movie that will see Guillermo del Toro host a Q&A with director Edgar Wright and "Pilgrim" creator Bryan Lee O'Malley.

Here are the particulars:

Read More »


  • Heat Vision sets its sights on what’s hot in the world of fanboy entertainment, from blockbuster films to the comic books that inspire them. Its author is Borys Kit of The Hollywood Reporter.



Recent Comments


Heat Vision recommends

The Hollywood Reporter is Your Complete Film Resource

The columnists and bloggers who write for The Hollywood Reporter have their collective finger on the pulse of the boxoffice. THR columnists deliver their thoughts on the film industry in an uncompromised style. Subscribe to THR today and get the latest views from these film experts and get the latest movie reviews as well.