Comic-Con is just days away and the studios with big plans are busy making sure they all go off without a hitch. There isn’t so much going on in terms of big casting announcements since some of the bigger ones are likely being saved for Hall H.

There’s still a lot of buzz from last week’s announcement of WarnerMedia’s new streaming service HBO Max and what that will mean for other streaming services like Netflix (which is losing Friendsonce the current deal is up) and DC Universe, the streaming service that hasn’t done so well with its original series but does include lots of DC Comics worth reading. It doesn’t seem like HBO Max will use a similar model, and DC Universe might eventually go bye-bye, but there’s also the question of what will happen to HBO GO (for cable subscribers) and HBO NOW (for those who don’t have HBO via cable). HBO Max already promises a fairly robust line-up that will include Looney Tunes, The Big Bang Theory, Gossip Girl and more as far as television shows and the likes of the Harry Potter movies, Lord of the Rings and DC’s Extended Universe in terms of movies. What it won’t have is all of the exclusive stuff that will be on Apple+, Disney+, Netflix and countless other streaming services.

We’ll look at what’s been going on after a quick recap of some stories you might have missed…

  • John Carpenter is co-writing a Batman comic
    It’s great seeing Carpenter remaining creative, even though he hasn’t directed a movie in nearly ten years. Last year’s Halloween remake helped revive interest in the master of horror, and it’s going to be interesting to see him take on one of DC Comics’ iconic villains.
  • Blumhouse has found its Invisible Man
    Similarly, I’m curious to see how Saw and Insidious co-creator Leigh Whannell takes on this classic Universal movie “monster.” Since I haven’t watched Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House, I really don’t know Oliver Jackson-Cohen at all, but I have confidence in Jason Blum with his casting choices, especially after seeing a new trailer mentioned below.
  • Brian K. Vaughn’s Paper Girls is coming to Amazon!
    Good for Brian K. Vaughn if this happens, because he’s responsible for some great comics that deserve to be adapted to other media and only Runawayshas made that transition (and that one was owned by Marvel). Paper Girls makes sense as a series when you realize that it predated the similar Stranger Things by a full year.

Now onto newer bits of entertainment news.

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Lashana Lynch taking on the 007 role? 

After years of fans clamoring for Idris Elba to become the next James Bond, much to the actor’s chagrin and lack of interest, rumors are now circulating that British actor Lashana Lynch aka Monica Rambeau from Captain Marvel, who was playing someone named “Nomi” in the 25th James Bond movie actually might become the next 007 post-Daniel Craig. The story comes from The Daily Mail, so grains of salt must be applied liberally to this story, but apparently, writer Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Killing Eve), who was brought in for rewrites, is leading the charge for the next 007 to be black and female. The movie is currently being filmed in the UK and Italy with director Cary Joji Fukunaga (True Detective).


Mattel’s Barbie movie gets a new creative team

Barbie

Mattel has been trying to make a movie based on its popular Barbie line of dolls seemingly forever, and now it seems like the project might be moving forward over at Warner Bros. Various trades are reporting that filmmaking power couple Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig have now stepped up to co-write the movie, which is being produced by Australian actor Margot Robbie, presumably to star in it. Gerwig, whose follow-up to the Oscar-nominated Lady Bird, an adaptation of Little Women, comes out this fall.

Baumbach and Gerwig have had quite a run with two great collaborations in Frances Haand Mistress America, co-written by the duo and directed by Baumbach. Gerwig really turned heads when she wrote and directed Lady Bird, and Little Womenis already getting possible awards buzz.

Of course, the question on most minds is what is this movie going to be?When we think of movies based on dolls, we immediately think of the Toy Story movies that had fairly blatant versions of Barbie and Ken.

The “perfection” of Barbie brings us to a movie that could be semi-related…


The Paradise Hills trailer and poster gives a sci-fi spin on achieving said “perfection”…

Samuel Goldwyn

Over the weekend, Alice Waddington’s debut Paradise Hills premiered at the Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, as did the first trailer and poster for the November 1 sci-fi release.

For the sake of transparency, I did a bit of PR work on the movie earlier this year. Although I haven’t actually seen the movie yet,  I’ve read the script co-written by Nacho Vigalondo (Colossal) and Brian DeLeeuw, and it’s a very timely Black Mirror-like parable about trying to be the best that you can be In this case, it stars Emma Robertsas Uma, a woman sent to “Paradise Hills” where Milla Jovovich’s Duchess helps mold young women to be their “best”… but who decides what that “best” is?

The amazing cast includes Aqwafina, Danielle MacDonald, Eiza Gonzalez (Baby Driver) and Jeremy Irvine, and hopefully, the whole movie looks as pretty as the trailer and poster. (You can view a larger version of the poster by clicking on the image above.)


20th Century Fox

Over the weekend, 20th Century Fox also debuted the first image of Ariane DeBose, who plays the role of “Anita” in Steven Spielberg’s 2020 holiday release West Side Story. I’m really curious to see what Spielberg can do with a musical, and the cast so far is impressive, including having original cast member Rita Moreno playing the role of “Valentina.” The movie also stars Ansel Elgort  — good thing he has some singing/dancing experience from Baby Driver — Rachel Zegleras as “Maria,” Rachel Zegler, Ana Isabelle, Corey Stoll, Brian d’Arcy James and Curtiss Cook, and I’m sure we’ll see the first teaser for the movie before year’s end. I know this is not the usual cuppa Beat tea, but hey, it’s Spielberg, and maybe this movie will get him back into the Oscar race before he returns to Indiana Jones.


Jason Reitman gives us a taste of the Ghostbusters Ecto-1

Speaking of neat pictures, second-gen filmmaker Jason Reitman, who has taken on the lofty job of reviving his father’s classic comedy Ghostbusters, gave us a quick taster of what the group’s vehicle, the Ecto-1 , is looking like for the 2020 revival.

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The Hunt could be another killer Blumhouse thriller

On Friday, when I went to see Crawl to review, I was surprised to see a trailer for a movie called The Huntthat wasn’t really on my radar. Essentially, it’s the latest high-concept thriller from Universal Pictures and Blumhouse, and it involves a group of people who are brought together to be hunted by a bunch of rich people, not too dissimilar to an idea usedin the Purge franchise. (The movie is not to be confused with Thomas Vinterberg’s excellent drama of the same name, starring Mads Mikkelsen, although I’m sure it will be.)

The movie is directed by Craig Zobel (Z for Zachariah) from a script by Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof and his Leftovers collaborator Nick Cuse.  Oddly, instead of putting that trailer I saw online, which features star Betty Gilpin (GLOW) being captured to be hunted, Universal has gone for something a little more creative, like an advertisement for those wanting to get involved in the hunting part of The Hunt, which I’m sure is going to pique quite a bit of interest in the September 27 release.


Speaking of Rob Zombie…

Actually, no one was speaking of Rob Zombie, but that doesn’t mean he’ll go away. Even so, the rocker-turned-filmmaker has finally released the first trailer for his oft-threatened threequel to the franchise that began with 2003’s The House of 1,000 Corpses and then was followed by 2005’s The Devil Rejects. Since then, Zombie went on to remake Halloween and direct a sequel as well as making some odder

Finally, the threequel to his initial series, called Three from Hell, will be coming out in a special three-night only Fathom Events release starting Sept. 16, and the first trailer has hit, which you can watch below.

That’s it for this installment of “Studio Coffee Run” but let us know what you think and even what you might like to see in the comments.