by Dave Trumbore Posted: November 22nd, 2010
With the script expected in January and shooting set to start in May of 2011, the rumor mill for The Dark Knight Rises is cranking up. The latest speculation has the movie based on Prey, a story arc in the Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight graphic novel series. As the rumor spread like wildfire across the Internet, the frenzy has driven prices way up and flooded the market with copies of the previously commonplace series.
Prey, written by Doug Moench, is an unofficial follow-up to Frank Miller’s Batman: Year One (which influenced Batman Begins and The Dark Knight). It features prominent Gotham psychiatrist Dr. Hugo Strange (rumored to be played by Tom Hardy), who uses his influence on the mayor to form a task force to capture the vigilante Batman, the object of Strange’s obsession. Heading this task force is the newly promoted Commissioner Gordon, who must weigh his responsibilities to Gotham against his loyalties to Batman. Meanwhile, Dr. Strange deduces Batman’s true identity and plays mind games with him, finally attempting to kill the Dark Knight in order to become him.
While this assumption remains wildly speculative, hit the jump to see why it might have a leg to stand on.
Here’s what we know so far about all things surrounding The Dark Knight Rises:
- Director Christopher Nolan has made it clear through his previous two installments in the Batman franchise that he prefers gritty, realistic and psychologically driven storylines and villains to over-the-top schlock (see Batman Forever and Batman and Robin).
- Batman Begins and The Dark Knight have both taken influences from existing source material (the previously mentioned Batman: Year One, as well as The Killing Joke, and The Long Halloween) so it’s not a stretch to think they’ll do it again
- The Dark Knight ends (spoiler, but honestly who hasn’t seen this yet?) with Batman running from the law and the citizens of Gotham believing that he killed Harvey Dent. Commissioner Gordon tells his son that they now have to chase Batman.
Not only does Dr. Hugo Strange fit in well with Nolan’s preferred villains, he’s one of Batman’s oldest nemeses, predating both the Joker and Catwoman (more on her in a minute). Strange originally was portrayed as more of a mad scientist, but recently has taken on a psychological and manipulative role, preferring to pull strings from behind the scenes. This would be a fantastic contrast to the in-your-face mayhem of The Joker in The Dark Knight.
Heck, even Catwoman shows up in the graphic novel series. The Dark Knight gave a nod to her inclusion in the next film when Lucius Fox (Morgan Freeman) quips that Batman’s armor “Should do fine against cats.” We all know how much we love speculating about who will play her! Maybe one of these lovely ladies will get the role of Catwoman while the other portrays the damsel in distress? We’ll have to wait and find out.
So for right now, we’ll call this “educated speculation” since it’s far from being a solid fact. Yes, the storyline meshes well with the end of The Dark Knight. Yes, the villain matches Nolan’s tastes. But I have a couple of issues with this line of thought.
The previous installments of this series have been loosely based on graphic novels, but have put forward an original story. While this doesn’t preclude Prey from being source material, I caution that it might only serve to introduce Dr. Hugo Strange as the villain. And how exactly would it jibe with the title, The Dark Knight Rises?
With that being said, Nolan has mentioned that this will be his last involvement with the franchise and plans on closing out the trilogy. I don’t see Prey providing that final act without tying off storylines that were started in Batman Begins. I, for one, fully expect Talia al Ghul to make not only an appearance, but feature prominently in the plot. Her involvement would refer back to the first movie and could tie up the trilogy quite nicely.
But with Nolan wanting to close out the series with the seeming inclusion of villains smarter than Bruce Wayne, there is the possibility that his secret identity may not stay so secret. Could Nolan do the unthinkable? Will the Batman be publicly unmasked in The Dark Knight Rises? Sacrilege, I know. But what a profound way it would be for Nolan to stamp his claim on the final act of this trilogy.
by Matt Goldberg Posted: November 22nd, 2010
Some interesting new info has come to light regarding Angelina Jolie’s untitled directorial debut. As we previously reported, the film is a love story set during the Bosnian War. In an extensive interview with Vasarnapi Hirek [via The Playlist], Jolie says that while she shot the film in color, she’s considering having it transferred to black and white. Said Jolie:
“It’s shot in color but it could transfer to black and white. We haven’t decided that. I can show you… we put a series of pictures together in black and white and it was beautiful. But the important thing is I want to make sure that we make a film for people who just want to go to the movies to watch a love story. To not be put off by anything that seems too heavy. So we want to walk that fine line to make it accessible to everybody because it’s important for as many people to see it.”Hit the jump for the first image from the film as well as Jolie shooting it in two different languages.
Jolie has also been shooting the film twice, once in English and once in the native language of the actors involved:
“We actually shot a full version in their native language and we shot a full version in English. We shot two complete films. I was only able to do it because the actors were so fluent in English so they were willing to work hard and do the scenes in two languages.”She adds that different territories will have the option of which version they want to hit theaters. It’s interesting to see Jolie relinquish a level of creative control in exchange for accessibility.
The cast includes Zana Majonovic (Snow) in the lead role and Rade Šerbedžija (Snatch) as well as cameo by Brad Pitt. There’s currently no word on a release date but Jolie is currently in L.A. editing the film. The Playlist assumes (and we agree) that the film will likely hit the festival circuit sometime next year and be distributed in the fall through producer Graham King’s new distribution arm, Film District. Here’s the synopsis of the film provided by Šerbedžija:
A love story about a young Serb and a Muslim woman who fell in love several evenings before beginning of war in Bosnia. The action follows war events with the young Muslim woman ending up in a Serbian concentration camp from where she is somehow saved by the young Serb. Their love becomes passionate but impossible.http://www.collider.com/2010/11/22/angelina-jolie-untitled-bosnian-movie-image/
by Ben Garman Posted: November 22nd, 2010
The first trailer is online for writer-director Rowan Joffé’s Brighton Rock, the second silver screen adaptation of the acclaimed novel by Graham Greene. Brighton Rock is Joffé’s first feature film as director, although he is already renowned as a screenwriter for 28 Weeks Later and The American, and is said to be a re-imagining of the book rather than a remake of the 1947 film. Brighton Rock depicts the curious relationship between a young British gangster and a tea room waitress who witnessed a crime he committed. Sam Riley, whose last big feature was his breakout role as Ian Curtis in Control, stars as main character, Pinkie, alongside Andrea Riseborough (Made In Dagenham) as his love interest, Rose. Andy Serkis, Helen Mirren and John Hurt also star.
Hit the jump for the trailer. Brighton Rock is to be released in the UK on February 4, 2011, but there’s no word yet on when it opens in the US.
Trailer via The Guardian, who praise the film as “A Masterpiece”. For more images from the film, click here.
Brighton Rock is a novel that has been visited time and again for adaptations, for radio, theatre and film, most famously in the iconic 1947 British film noir starring Richard Attenborough. Joffé has tweaked the story somewhat, for instance moving era from the 1930s setting of the novel to 1964, a period when working class gangsters like the Kray Twins were on the rise, and the death penalty in Britain was in it’s final year.
The trailer seems to pitch the film as more of a love story than an all out crime thriller per say, although Riley previously stated that there would be “more violence, more religious confusion” and more “sexual anxiety” than in the original movie. That doesn’t exactly come across, but we’ll have to wait and see. Nonetheless, it’s a decent enough trailer, conjuring an intriguing dark atmosphere against an ominous musical score (by Martin Phipps).