This is probably not news you're average movie goer is very interested in, but it's big, big, big news whether or not they are interested. MGM is officially up for sale, as reported by Variety. We're talking about a 4,000 film library that includes the James Bond Franchise, The Wizard of Oz, and so many more I'm not even going into it. We're talking about one of the cornerstones in film history. I can only hope the executives over there end up eating in soup kitchens for the next five years (but we all know there's a really big, very golden parachute for them), but the catalog of titles they own is important, and who it is that ends up owning the rights to those films determines what kind of access we have to them in the future, and the quality of the presentation we're offered. MGM has been the king of the half assed DVD release. The image quality is always passable (rarely stellar), but everything else is second rate, at best. They've got a vault full of classic film which deserves a really strong representation and has long term financial viability. The DVD releases of those classic films usually include the film, and if you're really lucky, an original trailer from that film. What they always contain is the trailer for MGM Home Entertainment, just to remind you of the number of other classic films you can see get the bargain basement treatment.
For all of my friends out there whom I know to be Cormac McCarthy fans, and who enjoyed the hell out of The Proposition, there are 10 new clips for The Road. I'm extremely excited about this one. Thanks to Bloody Disgusting for the clips. I haven't watched them, because I'd really like to go into this one having seen as little as possible, but they're here in case you want to.
Let me make something clear here. I am in no way inherently opposed to the big budget studio blockbuster. Iron Man and The Dark Knight are among my favorite films of the last few years. And no, it's not just because they're based on comic books (wise ass), it's because they are good movies. Roland Emmerich, director of such classsic films as Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow, Godzilla, Universal Soldier, and 10,000 BC, had his latest epic open yesterday. The latest in what has now been dubbed "disaster porn", 2012 is a film I've been thinking is going to not only be more of the same, but actually probably worse. "Hey Pony, I've seen that trick. Got any more?" Over at AICN, Massawyrm's posted a review basically confirming my suspicions. Since you more or less know where I stand on Roland Emmerich and his latest disaster, here's Capone's review from AICN as well. Decide for yourself whether or not to drop ten bones on this one.
Let's go on to something which is worth celebrating. Neither of those first two items really ring with happiness and excitement, do they? This should. Roger Corman is an icon of independent and cult film. He's the guy who gave people like Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorcese, Robert Deniro and Sylvester Stallone their first jobs in film. He's also the guy who produced countless drive-in classics like, well, see the three hundred film catalog for yourself. He's finally going to get some recognition for the part he's played in helping to shape the film industry, and inadvertently helping to create a market for independent and cult film. He's getting an honorary Oscar. Good for you Roger. A legion of geeks, freeks and tweakers are out here celebrating for you.
In other Oscar news, this is going to be the very first time the Best Animated Feature will have a full field of nominees to choose from. For a full five nominees to be chosen, sixteen films have to be submitted for nomination. This year, there are apparently twenty films submitted. /film had the original story, and has now posted a list of the submitted films as well. It's a list of twenty films alright. Does that make them all worthy of nomination? Not on your life, but see for yourself.
Are you over thirty? Are you a horror film fan? Do you remember an awesomely fun little film from the eighties about a teenager whose life gets turned upside down when he realizes his new neighbor is actually a vampire? You do? Well Fright Night fans, pay no attention to the large sharp object in my hand, and put yours right here on the table. Why, you ask? Because I know you've been thinking you'd give a finger to see a remake of this deeply loved favorite, and now I'm going to make your dreams come true. This is really like an arrow right in the heart for me. I've probably seen the original Fright Night almost one hundred times. I don't know that it even gives me any solace to have Marti Noxon, one of the former Buffy scribes working on the remake either. This is almost like seeing someone exhume my childhood pet, just to take the skull as a souvenir. I even loved the artwork for this one.
In more news of unnecessary remakes (the kind of news which isn't ending these days), there's a trailer for the A Nightmare On Elm Street remake. Jackie Earle Haley has done some really great work in the last few years. I can't for one second suggest otherwise, and if they were just going to have to go through with this, he is absolutely the best choice for a new Freddy Krueger. The trailer is kind of interesting. We'll see.
WOW. I'm just realizing how much of today's news is related to either sequels or remakes. They're really running out of ideas out there in the land of plastic and pollution aren't they? Well, here's the trailer for the Clash Of The Titans remake.
This is the last of the sequel/remake news for this installment, I promise. Is anyone interested in Scream 4? If you're one of the three people in the country raising your hand, here you go.
Over at Bloody Disgusting, Mr. Disgusting himself is raving about a film he's caught at the American Film Market. The Phillipino film, Slice, has apparently impressed him. I'll be keeping my eyes peeled for it, though I have a feeling it's going to be a straight to DVD release here in the States.
Good news for Stephen King fans, his latest book "Under The Dome" is headed to HBO as a mini-series. I've always been secretly disappointed that "The Stand" ended up on network television, because let's face it, the book was pretty graphic, and deserved to stay that way. I'm glad to hear HBO is picking up his latest book. Over at Dread Central, they've got that story, a video of one of his book signing's in which he provides an update on the progress of a film for his novel "Cell", and......................................................................
there's a new Dark Tower novel on the way. Here's the link. King is an interesting guy in general.
There's a Hansel and Gretel film on the way. I'm a long time fan of Grimm's fairy tales (I hated that damned Brother's Grimm movie), and I would like to see some more films based on them. This one is apparently going to be more in the tone of Shaun Of The Dead. They've got the story over at Bloody Disgusting.
Here's something that is just plain interesting. The American Film Institute hosts a variety of different programs, and apparently a number of them can be found and heard via podcast. I've been going through some of the older programs, and some of them are really interesting and really entertaining. Some of them are just not my thing, but I figured instead of just posting links to the one's I like, I'd post the link to where you can find whatever YOU might like. AFI PODCASTING is a pretty cool thing.