UPDATE: After setting psychological thriller The Loft for a summer 2014 debut, Universal’s also slotted its Zac Efron starrer Towniesfor a 2014 debut. The comedy stars Efron, Seth Rogen, and Rose Byrne in the tale of a young couple forced to move in with their newborn baby right next to a frat house. Nick Stoller (Get Him To The Greek, Forgetting Sarah Marshall) directs. Townies will hit theaters May 9.
PREVIOUSLY: Universal says it will release psychological thriller The Loft on August 29, 2014. Karl Urban (Star Trek Into Darkness) and James Marsden (2 Guns) star in the story of five married guys who conspire to secretly share a penthouse loft in the city – a place where they can carry out hidden affairs and indulge in their deepest fantasies. But the fantasy becomes a nightmare when they discover the dead body of an unknown woman in the loft and each begins to suspect the other. So far The Loft has the August 29, 2014 date all to itself.
After very lengthy negotiations, Karl Urban has closed a deal to star opposite Michael Ealy in Fox‘s untitled J.H. Wyman/J.J. Abrams drama pilot (formerly Inhuman). The project reunites Urban, who plays Bones in the Star Trek movie franchise, with the franchise’s helmer Abrams. The action-packed buddy cop show, from Warner Bros TV and Bad Robot, is set in the near future when all LAPD officers are partnered with highly evolved human-like androids. It centers on one such pairing, cop John Kennex (Urban) and his android partner Dorian (Ealy). Kennex is described as a respected police officer who has shut down emotionally after a tragic mission left him critically injured. The cast of the pilot also includes Lili Taylor and Minka Kelly. This marks the first series regular role for Urban, who recently played the title character in another futuristic cop project, feature Dredd 3D.
Luke Y. Thompson is contributing to Deadline’s coverage of Comic-con.
The good news for Lionsgate is that Comic-Con fans of the pen-and-ink Judge Dredd accept this new Dredd as the real deal, unlike the Stallone version. Karl Urban, standing with costar Olivia Thirlby, introduced the screening by asking, “I hope you like your films dark and gritty. Do ya?” After that, he took a slight dig at Stallone by saying that fans of lycra and gold codpieces would be disappointed.
The not so good news may be that wider audiences won’t be in on the joke. Dredd in the comics was a British parody of what the typical American action hero was perceived to be, and Urban’s exaggerated Clint Eastwood-style line readings fit that mold perfectly, but it may not be obviously satirical enough to those who won’t see past Dredd melting a guy’s head from inside, machine-gunning perps in super-bloody slo-mo, and casually dropping one villain off a balcony (this audience cheered and laughed at each one, which is the intended response).
Considerably lower-budget than the Stallone film directed by Danny Cannon, Dredd jettisons the Blade Runner-esque heavy sci-fi, creating a futuristic mega-city (stretching from Boston to L.A. with a radioactive desert outside) that’s more like … Read More »
Luke Y. Thompson is contributing to Deadline’s coverage of Comic-Com, which runs July 12-15 in San Diego.
We previously mentioned Lionsgate‘s Comic-Con dilemma with promoting Dredd — how to present footage when the star of your panel is The Expendables 2‘s Sylvester Stallone, who starred in the oft-derided previous adaptation Judge Dredd? Now we have their solution — on Wednesday, preview night, they’ll be showing the entire movie, in which Karl Urban (who’ll be introducing the screening in person) plays the title role previously undertaken by Sly, two months ahead of its opening.
Sometimes this strategy can backfire – Universal screened Scott Pilgrim vs. The World so many times at Comic-Con one year that by the time it came anyone who wanted to see it already had. But Dredd is looking for good word of mouth, as fans who’ve seen the trailer have been comparing it unfavorably to The Raid: Redemption, though this was somewhat defused when that film’s director Gareth Evans tweeted “Dredd looks great, not concerned about similarities. That film was in production around the same time we finished The Raid.” Read More »
Here’s a trailer for Lionsgate’s Dredd. Directed by Peter Travis and written by Alex Garland and based on the Judge Dredd comic books, it stars Karl Urban as the title character (played by Sylvester Stallone in the 1995 version) plus Olivia Thrilby and Lena Headey. Slated to open September 21st:
Lionsgate has acquired US distribution rights for three films backed by Stuart Ford’s IM Global. Each film has a one word title and falls into the hard core action genre. The first in the deal is Safe, a $30 million film that stars Jason Statham and is directed by Boaz Yakin, who wrote the action/thriller. The deal also included Dredd, the 3D adaptation of Judge Dredd that Deadline told you about last Cannes. Pete Travis is directing an Alex Garland script and Karl Urban plays Judge Dredd. The third film in the deal is Protection, a Simon West-directed action thriller that stars Dwayne Johnson. IM Global has been stepping it up since selling a majority stake to Reliance Big, and hiring former CAA independent sales agent Brian Kavanaugh Jones to launch Automatik, IM Global’s production joint venture with Alliance Pictures.
PRIEST, based on the Tokyopop-published graphic novel, is brought to you by the folks behind the agreeable B-movie LEGION. While many of the original Manga take place in the past, the movie serves as a sequel, set in a post-apocalyptic world. We’re shown a clip that is “not MPAA approved.” It begins with a dark, BLADE RUNNER-style cityscape. A hooded figure carrying a rosary walks through. It’s Paul Bettany, and he has a red cross tattooed on his face. A vampire attacks – this vampire is like a wild, wet beast, with no eyes, no pigment – think the demons in CONSTANTINE, on the offchance you actually saw that. Read More »
Summit Entertainment joins the phalanx of studios bringing film footage and star casts to the geek altar that is Comic-Con. Summit, which for the past two years has brought its Twilight Saga cast to the event, this time herds the cast of its two upcoming action offerings, Red and Drive Angry 3D. Red stars Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren, Karl Urban and Mary Louise Parker, director Robert Schwentke and graphic novel writer Warren Ellis will debut the film’s trailer and appear on a panel on July 22. The following day, Summit will assemble the Drive Angry 3D cast of Nicolas Cage, Amber Heard, William Fichtner and director Patrick Lussier will debut footage from the 3D shot film about a vengeful father who hunts down the people who killed his family.
Among the other studios that are planning big events at Comic-Con, Disney is highlighting Tron Legacy, and is expected to mount a big spectacle (last year they recreated Flynn’s Arcade, which figured in the original film and the sequel); Sony will make a fuss about The Green Hornet; Warner Bros is expected to vamp the Zack Snyder-directed Sucker Punch and Harry Potter; Universal will be pressing the case for Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World; Paramount has the Marvel Studios pic Thor. DreamWorks Animation is expected to show something from Megamind, and other studios are still making last minute plans for the San Diego event that begins July 21.