Undoubtedly the biggest story of CinemaCon week was the debut of footage from "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" screened with the 48fps method that director Peter Jackson believes is the future of film. Things didn't quite go to plan, however, with many of the reactions suggesting that the technique looked more like a television soap opera rather than a movie, even if the actual content was well-received. Jackson's since gone on the defensive, saying that he thinks it's something you get used to over time: "At first it's unusual because you've never seen a movie like this before. It's literally a new experience, but you know, that doesn't last the entire experience of the film -- not by any stretch, [just] 10 minutes or so. That's a different experience than if you see a fast-cutting montage at a technical presentation." We're certainly prepared to give it a try, but it sounds like Jackson & co have a lot of work to convince cinemagoers that 48fps are the future.
7. Pixar Unveiled A New Movie, And Gave One More A Title
Between 2010 and 2013, Pixar will have released only one original movie, this summer's "Brave," with sequels "Toy Story 3," "Cars 2" and "Monsters University" making up the rest of their slate in that time period. But the good news is that there's plenty of original fare on the way from the animation giants. The company confirmed release dates for two already announced projects that will follow "Monsters University." The first, from "Up" co-director Bob Peterson, is set for May 30, 2014, and has a brand new title -- "The Good Dinosaur," appropriate for a film set in a world where the asteroids never wiped out the dinosaurs, and the creatures live side-by-side with humans. Meanwhile, Peterson's colleague Pete Docter has his own film, currently known only as "The Untitled Pixar Movie That Takes You Inside The Mind," and that'll follow on a little over a year later, on June 19, 2015. Meanwhile, we discovered a whole new project, with "Toy Story 3" director Lee Unkrich currently beavering away on "The Untitled Pixar Movie About The Dia De Los Muertos," which focuses around the Mexican holiday. A movie equivalent to video-game classic "Grim Fandango?" We'll be there.
We're still months from seeing Peter Parker reboot "The Amazing Spider-Man," and even further from the latest James Bond movie, "Skyfall," but that hasn't stopped Sony from planning for the next installments of their biggest franchises. "The Amazing Spider-Man 2" has long been set for release on May 2nd, 2014, but Sony demonstrated what a priority the film is by this week hiring Alex Kurtzman and Bob Orci, the writers of "Transformers" and "Star Trek," to take a pass at James Vanderbilt's sequel script. And they've got no intention of letting the four-year gap between "Quantum of Solace" and "Skyfall" pass -- Sony's President of Worldwide Distribution, Rory Bruer, announced that the 24th Bond was aiming for a release in the holiday season of 2014, two years after "Skyfall."
9. If/When Robert Downey Jr. Leaves The Franchise, 'Iron Man' Movies Will Continue
Speaking of Bond, it seems that another massive franchise is looking to 007 as to how to keep it going indefinitely. With "The Avengers" hitting theaters, and "Iron Man 3" about to get before cameras, Robert Downey Jr's multi-film Marvel contract is starting to run down, and the studio are aware that the megastar is unlikely to want to stick around for long. And Marvel head Kevin Feige is prepared for the possibility, saying that "I think Bond is a good example. Let’s put it this way: I hope Downey makes a lot of movies for us as Stark. If and when he doesn’t, and I’m still here making these movies, we don’t take him to Afghanistan and have him wounded again. I think we James Bond it." Time to start placing your bets on the next Tony Stark, ladies and gentlemen...
Ok, so technically not from CinemaCon, but from a presentation by an exec at a big studio, and newsworthy nonetheless: CEO of once-troubled, now firmly-in-recovery studio MGM, Roger Birnbaum, spoke at the University of Denver, letting slip some reports on some key properties, including the since confirmed news that Sam Raimi would produce a remake of "Poltergeist." He also suggested that Kimberley Peirce's remake of "Carrie" would contain some found-footage elements, via interviews with survivors of the prom disaster, possibly an incorporation of Stephen King's use of fake documents in the source material. But perhaps the most interesting was his update on the future installments in the 'Dragon Tattoo' movies which the studio co-financed with Sony. "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo," the first in the series, underwhelmed at the box-office, and Birnbaum acnowledged that that's changed their plans for the sequels, with the studio considering shooting "The Girl Who Played With Fire" and "The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest" back-to-back, to save on production costs. Steve Zaillian's scripts are seemingly complete, and Birnbaum does, it would seem, want to keep David Fincher around for future installments, but will the director's pricetag and meticulous methods turn out to make him financially unviable? We'll soon see. [Movies.com]