Here’s how thoroughly Batman’s influence has permeated the mainstream: he’s claimed tacit ownership of the very notion of shining a light into the sky. The Bat-Signal, introduced in the comics as Gotham City’s method of summoning the Dark Knight, has been endlessly parodied in the annals of pop-culture — just earlier this month, the poster for Captain Underpants paid homage to the iconic (a word I mean here literally, and not in the ‘a photo of the Kardashians’ sense) design of the skyward spotlight. And all too appropriately, the Bat-Signal will now be used to give one former Batman, the dearly departed Adam West, a proper send-off.
Johnny Depp needs some public image rehabilitation, and badly. When it came out last year that he had physically abused former spouse Amber Heard, a dark and sickly pallor was cast over the heretofore beloved actor’s profile. It isn’t helping that he hasn’t been in a good movie since 2011 (Rango, though Verbinski’s follow-up The Lone Ranger has its supporters), and hasn’t been in a really profitable one since 2014’s Into the Woods. The guy has to save a little face if he wants to secure his future in this business, and what better way to do that than to play to the only demographic unaware of his unsavory personal life: the youth!
The sequel to 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy is fast approaching, only two short weeks out from today. But of course the media blitz has long since begun, wallpapering major cities with colorful posters depicting the main lineup of intergalactic crimefighters/occasional crime-doers. Sharp-eyed fans will notice some shifting personnel, too — blue-faced gun-for-hire Yondu (Michael Rooker) earned a lot of fans with his magical floating murder-arrow in the first film, and has been accordingly bumped up to main-cast status through sheer fan demand. As for new faces, Kurt Russell and Pom Klementieff bring some fresh blood to the franchise as Star-Lord’s long-lost father Ego and empath servant girl Mantis, respectively.
Did you know that they apparently made another Terminator movie in 2015? Despite having seen it in theaters back during its original run, this still strikes me as new, hard-to-believe information. If there was really a new installment of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s popular sci-fi/action franchise as recently as two years ago, wouldn’t someone remember that? Wikipedia claims that the film (subtitled Genisys, which sounds fake but okay) attempted to launch Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke’s big-screen phase of her career, included a clutch starring role from Ahnuld himself, and earned the second-most of any entry in the series. Call me crazy, but that seems like a pretty major occurrence to have entirely fled the public‘s collective pop-cultural memory. I’m skeptical — does this look like a real movie to you?
Transformers and the Super Bowl are a match made in heaven. Is the NFL’s biggest night not, in its own way, the Michael Bay of televised sporting events? Massive budget, fetish for pyrotechnics, close-up shots of muscle-bound men glistening with hard-earned sweat, oodles of American patriotism, very few women, an overall roiling undercurrent of homoerotic tension — when the new TV spot for Transformers: The Last Knight runs on Sunday night during the big game, it’ll be difficult to tell where the football ends and the gigantic alien robot battles begin.
Good news: fans are finally getting their shot to lay claim to two highly sought-after pieces of comic book memorabilia, with George Reeves’ original Superman costume and the Batsuit worn by Michael Keaton during his stint as the Batman both up at auction until January 26. The bad news: you’re going to have to part with at least tens of thousands of dollars if you want to get your mitts on that spandex.
The most widely recognized iterations of Batman’s constant foe the Joker would probably have to be Heath Ledger as the unchained mad-dog of The Dark Knight, Jack Nicholson as an urbane creep in Tim Burton’s 1989 film, and to a lesser extent, Cesar Romero’s campy turn in the goofy TV series from the ’60s. But Mark Hamill logged more hours as the Clown Prince of Crime than the rest of them put together, voicing the Joker in the long-running animated series and its many spin-offs. The man with the greatest claim to the Joker persona dusted off his special crazy-voice this week for a more pointedly political purpose than the usual cocktail-party entertainment.
We were all so busy scrambling to avert one apocalypse today, we didn’t even see another one rearing its head in the distance. SlashFilm recently spoke to power-producer David Heyman at the junket for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and questioned the Hollywood player about the plans for Warner Bros.’ impending Willy Wonka film. Without making any concrete announcements about what to expect from the early-in-development project, Heyman did drop one rather ominous prophecy when asked whether the script would be a remake of the popular Gene Wilder-starring film or the Tim Burton-directed version.
Come Christmastime, there’s nothing quite like sharing in the generous Yuletide spirit by singing a few carols, trading presents, and getting completely wasteycakes-drunk with all your favorite coworkers. Unrestrained bacchanalian debauchery is the reason for the season this year in the Office Christmas Party trailer, picking up where the drug-fueled shenanigans of last year's The Night Before left off. Pour yourself a glass of eggnog, spike it with some additional alcohol, pop a tab of Ecstasy in there if you're feeling particularly merry, and buckle up for the bumpiest sleigh ride of the year.
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