A few bits and pieces from around the Interwebs…
1. Smaug gets a voice. Benedict Cumberbatch will voice and portray (via motion capture) the pivotal dragon Smaug in the upcoming adaptations of ‘The Hobbit.’ He’s actually already in the film, providing the voice of Necromancer.
Cumberbatch is already catching some buzz for his performances in the Steven Spielberg-directed ‘War Horse’ and ‘Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,’ starring opposite Gary Oldman, Tom Hardy and Colin Firth. All very cool, although I’m most enamored with his role as ‘[amazon_link id=”B004132HZS” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Sherlock Holmes[/amazon_link]’ on the BBC/PBS series. [Deadline New York]
2. J.J. Abrams goes dark. Mark Ruffalo and Zoe Saldana might be swinging into action-star mode with ‘The Avengers’ and ‘Colombiana,’ respectively, but together, they’ll be delving into some dark drama. The two are set to star in ‘Infinitely Polar Bear,’ produced by J.J. Abrams and written and directed by Maya Forbes.
Ruffalo will play a bipolar husband and father who goes off his meds and loses his sanity and job while struggling to hold onto his marriage. I can definitely see Ruffalo in the role, but I’m not sure about Saldana and Abrams. Maybe at the end, we’ll learn it all took place in an alternate universe. [Playlist]
3. Kate Winslet to star in ‘Labor Day’? The adaptation of the [amazon_link id=”B004MKLS00″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Joyce Maynard novel[/amazon_link] will be directed by Jason Reitman and will star Kate Winslet.This sounds like just the sort of dramatic role she loves to sink her teeth into. She’ll play a single mom who takes in a stranger with a dangerous past and falls in love with him over the course of Labor Day Weekend. Those holidays can be a nightmare, can’t they? [Deadline New York]
4. James Mangold to direct ‘Wolverine’? Darren Aranofsky had been set to direct the sequel to ‘[amazon_link id=”B001GCUO16″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]X-Men Origins: Wolverine[/amazon_link],’ but pulled out in March because he didn’t want to spend that much time away from his family. The filming in Japan was put on hold because of the earthquake and tsunami.
Now it looks like James Mangold is at the front of the line to direct. Let’s hope he can bring better reviews than the first ‘Wolverine’ movie, and with ‘3:10 to Yuma’ and ‘Walk the Line’ on his credits, I’m keeping a good thought. [The Wrap]
5. Will dinosaurs rule the earth for a fourth time? Rumor has it that Steven Spielberg is in discussions with writer Mark Protosevich about doing a fourth installment of the ‘Jurassic Park’ franchise. Well, we’ll see. We’ve been hearing these rumors since ‘Jurassic Park 3’ came out in 2001. There’s something about those movies that always sucks me right in, so I’m sure I’ll be excited if and when a sequel ever happens. [Next Movie]