Tuesday, July 22, 2014

GOTHAM Season One Will Feature Hugo Strange, "Older" Harvey Dent And The Rise Of Arkham

Speaking with IGN at TCA 2014, Gotham showrunner Bruno Heller has dropped more exciting tidbits for the Batman prequel's first season. He reveals that Hugo Strange will be present, as he is a key figure in the creation of Arkham Asylum. The rise of the infamous institution will apparently play a big role in this season. Heller states, "Hugo Strange is going to pop up because we're going to start dealing with how Arkham was created and why Arkham was created in the way that it was so, yeah, absolutely. It's a Season One thing because in our telling of it the way Arkham was created and the why and how is one of the causes of the particular criminal climate in Gotham that allowed Batman to happen. The revolving door of Arkham is both a brilliant narrative device because it allows you to -- you don't have to kill people off, you can just put them in cold storage -- but if you're telling the story from the start you kind of have to explain, 'What the [bleep]? Why don't you make that place a place people don't escape from?' We're going to explain why it is the way it is and Hugo Strange is a big part of that." Gotham marks the live action debut of Strange, who for some time was rumored to be in 2012's The Dark Knight Rises.

Heller also confirms that we will be seeing Harvey Dent in the series, but his age will be closer to that of Jim Gordon than Bruce Wayne. "We're playing Harvey Dent slightly older. He's more Gordon's age in this telling. One of the things to avoid in order not to tell a high school story -- which would be great, but it''s a different show on a different network at a different time that I would not be a part of. But he will go back to school and villains will be part of that world." Dent has been heavily featured in past live action Batman incarnations. He was played by Billy Dee Williams in 1989's Batman, while Tommy Lee Jones took over as Two-Face in Batman Forever. Aaron Eckhart then played the character in The Dark Knight, and is inarguably the most memorable version to date.

Finally, Heller is asked about potentially bringing in Ra's al Ghul and the League of Assassins. The Demon's Head has been referenced several times on The CW's Arrow, with his daughter Nyssa and other League members being featured. Would this keep Gotham from possibly bringing in this part of Batman's mythology? "That's a good meta-physical, trans-network question. I don't think it would preclude anything, but I think it would be tough to do cross-overs because the worlds are so different. Like I said, there's so many rich, great characters that we can't get them all in there." Which other characters do you wish to see on Gotham?

Gotham premieres Monday, September 22nd on Fox.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Dwayne Johnson Strongly Implies That He Is Playing Shazam For Warner Bros. And DC

There has been much talk over which DC character Dwayne Johnson will play for Warner Bros. Originally linked to the roles of both Black Adam in a defunct Shazam film and Lobo in his own film, "The Rock" recently confirmed that he will play somebody in the DC Universe, but it was likely neither of those two. Speculation has ranged from Darkseid and Green Lantern to Aquaman and Shazam himself. Now, Johnson has offered a big hint that he will portray the Big Cheese himself.

Speaking with Total Film, Johnson is unsurprisingly asked about the DC rumors. He recounted the time he spent with DC Entertainment to decide on which character he should play and speaking with fanboys, before confirming that his role will be announced soon. This weekend's San Diego Comic-Con perhaps? "There’s a character out there that we’re going to announce very soon, that I’m going to play, and…I’ll just say this, he has the power of Superman, and it’s not Green Lantern, by the way. And believe me, John Stewart, he was a character I wanted to play, but there was already a version of Green Lantern, and so we’ve gone in a different direction. But this character has the power of Superman, he can throw down..." Interesting comment about Green Lantern there - contrary to rumors, it sounds like John Stewart will not be a part of the big-screen Justice League (yet). Perhaps the DCCU will go the New 52 route and have Hal Jordan?

Johnson concludes by giving the biggest hint: "Just say the word. That’s all I’m going say." As most DC fans know, Billy Batson is famous for uttering the word "Shazam!" when he transforms into the superhero Shazam, formerly Captain Marvel. So, it sounds like Johnson could very well be playing Shazam, who will reportedly headline his own film for a July 2016 release. This certainly adds even more credibility to the alleged leaked DC plans; if Johnson is doing his own movie and Shazam is out in a couple years, then it makes sense that they're one and the same, especially considering The Rock's involvement with a past incarnation.

Then there's the question of how he fits into Justice League. A Wall Street Journal report claimed a while back that Shazam is one of the DC films in development that are not connected to the superhero ensemble, which is reportedly set for a May 2017 release. It doesn't clarify whether or not the two are separate universes, but it would be illogical if that were the case. Shazam has been frequently linked with the New 52 Justice League, with the character replacing Aquaman in this year's animated film Justice League: War. So, it wouldn't make sense to put out movies for Shazam and Justice League and not have the two at least share the same universe. Also, Johnson has talked frequently about fighting Superman, which would be odd if his DC role didn't even co-exist with the Man of Steel.

With Comic-Con this weekend, we can expect plenty of DC movie news. Stay tuned for more as we have it.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Dwayne Johnson Thinks His Hercules Can Defeat Henry Cavill's Superman In A Battle

Dwayne Johnson's latest film, Hercules, hits theaters this Friday. The wrestler-turned-actor has also recently confirmed that he will play an unspecified DC character, with the most recent speculation leading to Shazam. Comic-Con is this week, with Warner Bros. expected to announce its DC Cinematic Universe plans on Saturday. Could The Rock's character be revealed then? In the meantime, Johnson weighs in on who would win if his Hercules fought Superman.

Speaking with Digital Spy, the actor is asked for his thoughts on the outcome of a fight between his Hercules and Henry Cavill's Superman. Naturally, Johnson is confident that he would easily take out the Man of Steel. He also interestingly adds that Cavill is a "buddy" of his. A cool coincidence since the two may share the big screen in a DC movie in the near future. Johnson also has interesting things to say about Hercules being the first "superhero," which you can check out in the video interview below. Who do you think would win in a battle between Hercules and Superman?

LEGO Unveils THE DARK KNIGHT TRILOGY Set Featuring Batman, Joker And Tumbler For Comic-Con Debut

Among LEGO's exclusives at this year San Diego Comic-Con is one that will excite fans of The Dark Knight Trilogy. Via USA Today, LEGO incarnation of the Tumbler, the Batmobile of the Nolanverse, will be on display at the convention before being available to purchase in September. LEGO stores and the company's official website will sell the 1,869 piece set for a whopping $199. The LEGO Tumbler measures 15 inches tall and 9 inches wide, and includes "an armored exterior, adjustable wings, a detailed interior (with a console screen that reads "INTIMIDATE") and oversized rubber-tread tires. It also comes with a fact sheet about the vehicle from the movies."

But that's not all. The set will also include minifigures for Batman and The Joker, as seen in Christopher Nolan's acclaimed trilogy. The former features the Batman Begins suit in LEGO for the first time, while the latter marks the debut of Heath Ledger's Clown Prince of Crime. You can check out a slew of pictures courtesy of USA Today below. Are you planning to buy this fascinating LEGO set?

CONSTANTINE Series Will Not Be Connected To ARROW And THE FLASH Universe

It was recently confirmed that The CW's DC Universe consisting of Arrow and The Flash will be separate from Warner Bros.' movie universe, while it was previously affirmed that Fox's Gotham is also unrelated. Now, it looks like we can add NBC's Constantine to that list. In an interview with Green Arrow TV, Arrow executive producer Marc Guggenheim was asked about the Ivy University Easter egg that can be found in the Constantine pilot.

In the comics, Ivy University is connected to Ray Palmer, who will be played by Brandon Routh on Arrow. Guggenheim states that we may see Ivy pop up at some point in the CW-verse, but it won't be the same one referenced in Constantine. "When we do our Easter eggs, they’re never in conjunction with other DC Easter eggs." He adds that Arrow is "just in the Flash universe." 

This news isn't terribly surprising, considering the fact that Constantine looks to be an entirely different beast from either of The CW's shows. Also, it is difficult and uncommon for different television networks to work together and crossover two or more of their series'. For Green Arrow TV's full interview with Guggenheim, in which he discusses Olicity and casting Routh, click the link above.

The Flash premieres on The CW October 7th, while Arrow returns on October 8th. Constantine premieres on NBC October 24th.

Friday, July 18, 2014

THE FLASH Casts Wentworth Miller As Captain Cold; ARROW Crossovers Set

We have some more exciting news from The Flash's panel at TCA today. It has been announced that Prison Break actor Wentworth Miller has been cast as iconic Flash villain Leonard Snart, aka Captain Cold. "We'll be seeing his origin [story] and the origin of the Rogues," says executive producer Greg Berlanti. The character will make his debut in the series' fourth episode. Speaking of Flash villains, there is a neat Gorilla Grodd Easter egg in the Arrow spin-off's pilot. Andrew Kreisberg says that they hope to introduce the primate on the series eventually.

Geoff Johns weighs in with much praise for The Flash, stating, "It's probably the most faithful DC Comics adaptation ever. We've incorporated almost everything of the mythology into it and added a new backstory with S.T.A.R. Labs." This should surely please fans of the Flash comics. Additionally, the crew discussed the inclusion of Robbie Amell's Ronnie Raymond. Berlanti said that Firestorm's other half in the comics, Martin Stein, will be introduced later on. "Between [Arrow and Flash], we'll have half the Justice League on our two shows this year," he says.

Arguably the most exciting announcement revealed that Arrow and The Flash will have start off with smaller crossovers - including Felicity visiting Central City in episode four of the latter - before a bigger event featuring both series. "Episodes 8 of both shows, Arrow and Flash, are going to be a two-hour crossover event," announced Kreisberg. These episodes will debut just before both shows premiere their mid-season premieres. Stay tuned for more news on this as we have it.

The Flash premieres on The CW October 7th, while Arrow returns on October 8th.

Geoff Johns Confirms ARROW And THE FLASH Are Separate From DC Cinematic Universe; Wants To See Shazam On Screen Next

For a long time, fans have wanted to see Arrow and its spin-off series The Flash linked to the growing DC Cinematic Universe. After Man of Steel created a world where other DC heroes can exist, the universe is being fully expanded with 2016's Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and 2017's Justice League, with many more DC films in the pipeline. But will the CW shows fit in somewhere? According to Geoff Johns, no.

Appearing at TCA today (via IGN), the DC Chief Creative Director definitively ruled out a crossover between these two worlds. "You'll see a lot of DC universe characters [on The Flash and Arrow]. You won't see Batman or Superman. We're on production on Batman V Superman now. So you'll see characters like The Atom or Firestorm, but no not Batman or Superman right now [on TV]." Johns continues, "It's a separate universe than film so that the filmmakers can tell the story that's best for film. While we explore something different in a different corner of the DC universe. We will not be integrating the film and television universes." 

This is sure to be disappointing for many fans hoping to see a unified DC Movie/TV Universe. But, as Johns states, it makes sense to keep them separate so that each side can tell the best stories possible. We will still see a different version of Flash on the big screen, however - in addition to a rumored cameo in Batman v. Superman and a bigger role in Justice League, the Fastest Man Alive is allegedly co-headlining a team-up film with Green Lantern, which is reportedly targeting a Christmas 2017 release.

Talk then turned to other DC characters. Despite Gal Gadot playing Wonder Woman on the big screen, Johns and CW president Mark Pedowitz expressed interest in utilizing the heroine for television - as long as the script is right and not repetitive. Johns is then asked which character he'd like to see adapted next, and he namedropped Shazam. Interestingly enough, a Shazam film is rumored to be releasing July 2016, shortly after Batman v. Superman. Could Johns' mention of the former Captain Marvel be more than a coincidence?

Stay tuned for more DC movie and television news as we have it, especially as we go into San Diego Comic-Con next week.

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