• 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.