Good news for anyone who thinks Hollywood has milked superhero movies for all they're worth: They're about to start doing that with some other, way more specific genres! (While also continuing to do superhero movies, of course.) Fortunately, you know what they say -- you literally can never get too much of a good thing, and if they keep churning out endless iterations of that good thing, it'll keep being just as good forever! (We're paraphrasing.)
So who's ready to get definitely-not-tired of stuff?!
Murder-cult leader and forehead-carving enthusiast Charles Manson died in 2017, leaving the world with one fewer terrifying psycho and many, many more cinematic perspectives about that terrifying psycho on the way.
Quentin Tarantino has already set his Manson movie (starring Leonardo DiCaprio, if he can grow facial hair) to be released on the exact date of the 50th anniversary of the Tate murders. As a reminder, we're talking about the time eight-month-pregnant actress Sharon Tate and four of her friends were brutally murdered by Manson's followers. Sony also granted Tarantino "extraordinary creative controls," so we may soon witness the first movie in which the N-word is shouted seven times during the production company logos.
But that's not all! Matt Smith, the Eleventh Doctor turned Duke on The Crown, will play the titular Charlie in the forthcoming Charlie Says, the story of the three women who were sentenced to life imprisonment after carrying out Manson's horrifying instructions. On the lighter side of quintuple homicide, Hilary Duff will portray Tate herself in The Haunting Of Sharon Tate, an imagined psychological thriller wherein Tate magically foresees visions of her own murder. (Tate's sister is not a fan.)
If Hollywood learned any lessons from the unforgettable hit films Battleship and Ouija, it's that basing entire feature films on decades-old narrative-less toys that kids today barely have any attachment to always works.
Paramount initially planned to supplement Transformers and G.I. Joe by rolling out an entire Hasbro cinematic universe, with an all-star team of writers building movies around '80s action figure lines like Micronauts, M.A.S.K., and ROM. If you're a nerd and you're already saying "Who?", imagine how excited general audiences will be. M.A.S.K. has since reportedly been shelved, but the year 2020 will bring us a new G.I. Joe movie (daringly titled G.I. Joe), and a Micronauts one, followed by a Dungeons & Dragons reboot and Untitled Hasbro Project in 2021.
The question is, with four movies in 24 months, how can they possibly maintain the consistent quality of the $1.5 billion Transformers franchise?
As for ROM, the studio seemed to forget that the project existed for a few years there, but they recently hired the guy from Avengers and Ready Player One to figure out how to do the script. If that doesn't work out, they could always cobble together Chappie clips off the cutting room floor. But they better do it quickly, while teens are still constantly talking about the toy ROM.
Authors like Dr. Seuss, Roald Dahl, and Shel Silverstein have shaped millions of childhoods with their fantastical, captivating stories of unparalleled imagination that transcend age or era. These stories are so inspiring and timeless that Hollywood is about to unleash an avalanche of movies about them ... being written.
We're getting a Roald Dahl biopic starring Hugh Bonneville from Downton Abbey, a Dr. Seuss biopic from the director of The Perks Of Being A Wallflower, and a Shel Silverstein biopic starring and directed by none other than James Franco. (Presumably, Seth Rogen will play the tree that inspired The Giving Tree, who is a stoner.) There's also movie about the secret life of Astrid Lindgren, the Swedish author of Pippi Longstocking, even though there hasn't been an actual Pippi Longstocking movie in 30 years. There's even a J.K. Rowling biopic potentially on the way -- the script was featured on the Black List of best unproduced scripts in 2017 -- even though she's 52 and still very much alive and retroactively altering her characters' sexual histories.
Warner Bros. Pictures
Why are all these movies coming out now? Well, last year they released a film about Winnie The Pooh creator A. A. Milne, which ... didn't make much money or win any big prizes (probably because they left out the part about Milne's son making his own gun). So yeah, we got nothing. Still, let's all look forward to a bunch of scenes about sulky people whipping bottles at typewriters, followed by a final scene in which some of Dr. Suess' "magic" occurs in real life and all his relatives are like, "Whoa, was that real life or his book? In a way, his magic is real now ... or is it?" and stare into the camera. Awww, hell yeah. Open-ended magical realism is an HOV lane to PROFOUND CITY. Let's get eight of this exact movie.
Despite all odds and common sense, the 2015 Goosebumps movie starring Jack Black was generally positively reviewed and earned around $80 million at the box office. And we all know how movie studios respond when a generally fondly remembered property spawns a decent film that performs adequately at the box office: GREEN-LIGHT FOUR MORE R.L. STINE MOVIES, STAT! WE NEED ONE READY TO GO BY THE TIME I FINISH CHOMPING THIS COMICALLY HUGE "STUDIO PRODUCER" CIGAR AND SHOUTING "INSTRUCTIONS!" NOW.
A second 'Bumps film, Goosebumps: Horrorland, is already underway, and Stine's other kids' horror series, Fear Street, is potentially being made into three movies. There are about 200 Goosebumps books in total, and another 150 Fear Streets, so even if they churn out five movies a year, there's enough source material for seven decades' worth of PG thrillers ... after which point Stine's great-grandchildren will have written another 1,000 books about urban legend blobs that devour middle-school cafeterias, and the cycle will begin anew.
Oh, and for good measure, the screenwriter for It has been tapped to write a big-screen adaptation of the Nickelodeon Saturday night staple Are You Afraid of the Dark? It'll be interesting to see what that guy can do with a clown that's REALLY scary.
We all knew Heath Ledger's landmark portrayal of the Joker in The Dark Knight wasn't going to go undiluted forever. 2016's Suicide Squad featured a much-maligned reimagining of the iconic villain as the brother Ronald McDonald doesn't like to talk about but occasionally sends money.
Warner Bros. Pictures
But even this was a brief one-off appearance, and more noteworthy for everyone ripping on Jared Leto claiming he mailed the cast used condoms and anal beads to get into character as the Joker, the Batman villain known for always doing that.
Pretending the "new" Joker never happened is about to get way tougher, though. Warner Bros. is simultaneously developing three new Joker-centric movies. There's the Suicide Squad sequel (the first movie did make $745 million worldwide, despite its couple of faults), a standalone movie centered around the Joker's relationship with Harley Quinn, and a Joker "origin" story directed by Todd Phillips (yes, the Hangover Todd Phillips) and produced by Martin Scorsese (forgot what he directed ... Hangover 3?). The studio reportedly hopes to continue the Leto Joker as part of the connected universe, while the "origin" timeline will exist independently and allow for a different actor -- Joaquin Phoenix was "in talks" -- to DHL shit-covered sex toys to unsuspecting A-listers.
Warner Bros. Pictures
What happens when a disgruntled Leto flips out when the Phoenix Joker movies get more popular than his? Easy: They film him mailing Phoenix dead parakeets or whatever and release that as a Paranormal Activity-style "found footage" movie in a THIRD Joker timeline. Then they shoehorn the Joker into Tomb Raider 2, do two concurrent Lego Joker movies (one for each Joker), and release Ocean's 8 Jokers, a heist movie in which a ragtag group of Jokers teams up to pull off one last big joke. Then each of those eight Jokers gets their own Joker universe, and long story short, every single one of these movies is great.
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