• More pictures of Hugh Jackman as Wolverine! That’s great, because we were starting to get bored.

• Oh boy, a new Planet of the Apes film! This one will be based on #4 — CONQUEST, in which we see just how those damned monkeys took over.

• Remember what we were saying about nerdlebrities who are real comics fans and not just poseurs? Samuel L. Jackson passes the test:

THR: With all this producing, you’re still active as an actor. Tell us a little about “The Spirit.”

Jackson: I’ve been trying to work with Frank Miller for a while — and trying to acquire one of his properties. I spent a lot of time in comic book stores, always have, since I was a kid, and I was never able to contact him, but he knew of my interest. When they did “Sin City,” I was talking to Quentin (Tarantino) and I told him, “How can you do this thing and I’m not in it?” And he told Frank, and Frank was impressed that I even, you know, knew what it was and wanted to be a part of it. So when “The Spirit” came up, he said I was the person that he thought of to play the Octopus.

• Could it be…? Another problematic DC superhero movie? Yes it seems that director George Miller isn’t making that JLA movie after all, and the world will be deprived of Armie Hammer as Batman:

In an appearance on Sydney-based morning show Sunrise today, Miller confirmed that he’s no longer involved “in any capacity.” Also, he says that if Warner Bros. does eventually decide to shoot a JLA movie, it will likely be recast since “the studios seem to want bigger stars in their superhero movies now.”

• Much turmoil at Midway Games, which just released “Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe,” as Viacom head Sumner Redstone has sold off his interest in the red ink-spewing company . Redstone sold his 87 percent stake — which cost him some $500 million — to private investor Mark Thomas for $100,000. Thomas gets a bonus: more than $150 million in debt.

However, Midway has consistently lost money since Redstone took control as investments in new technology didn’t yield benefits and major game releases were delayed and often sold poorly. A management shakeup earlier this year, after Redstone’s daughter Shari was named chair, has resulted in major cost cutting but no other benefits for the company’s bottom line.

Thomas, who is unknown in the videogame biz and couldn’t be reached, is taking on a major challenge in Midway despite having bought the company for almost no cash.


  1. Re: Midway… National Amusements gets to claim the tax loss not just this year, but previous years as well. The Wall Street Journal reported something to the tune of $800 million. And I think this helps Mr. Redstone renegotiate his crushing debt load. (Yup, even multimillionaires are suffering during this recession.)

    I’m not a gamer, but the press says Midway (once one of the great video game companies, AKA Bally/Midway) hasn’t had much success lately.

  2. If they don’t shoot the new CONQUEST OF THE PLANET OF THE APES at my alma mater (UC Irvine), then I’m going to be very very disappointed and promise that I won’t go see it.

    Of course, after Burton’s APES, that was pretty much a sure thing.

  3. Back in the Stone Age (right after the Bronze Age and before the Dark Age), my brothers and I were convinced that, after seeing “The Road Warrior”, George Miller was THE MAN to direct a Batman movie. This was way before Tim Burton’s “Batman” and some time after “Superman II”. A George Miller JLA movie would’ve been pretty darned close… :(

  4. One of the guys I worked with asked me yesteryday, “what have you heard about the Punisher movie?”

    I said, “not much, when does it come out?”

    he said, “this week.”

    talk about flying under teh comics radar.

  5. Matt – why would they shoot Conquest of Planet of the Apes in Irvine? What the hell is so special about Irvine when the original was shot in Century City?

    I don’t see any signs of Hollywood plastered on the city of Irvine. That’s a rather silly thing to say, don’t you think?

    I hate runaway production.