X-Men: Days Of Future Past: Halle Berry Is IN

It appears that next year's time-slicing sequel, X-Men: Days of Future Past will add yet another important mutant alumnus to its already-amazing cast. Halle Berry has confirmed that (at least, as far as she knows,) she will reprise her role as weather-wielding mutant and de facto leader of the X-Men, Ororo Munroe aka Storm.

In an interview with Access Hollywood, the Oscar-winning actress, in promoting her new kidnapping thriller, The Call, fielded the inevitable X-Men question with an answer in the positive.

“I’m in. I think I’m in.” Adding, “I am [excited], yeah. I love Storm. That’s one of my favorite characters that I’ve played. And people love that character as well.”

Berry would also echo those sentiments in an interview with BlackTree TV that seemingly solidifies the news:

"The fans really love Storm, and so I'm really happy that it's worked out that way. No matter what my part will be or won't be, to be a part of that is always a good thing. I love it.

Berry does seem to acknowledge the possibility that her role would (much like in the original Days of Future Past comic book story,) be limited, at best. However, it does seem that for her, and likely the others, reprising this role will be a labor of love. Indeed, Berry joins a crowded cast that includes heavies like Hugh Jackman, Jennifer Lawrence, and just about EVERYONE that has even a passing connection to the original X-Men trilogy and its rebooted 2011 prequel, X-Men: First Class. As a consequence of director, Bryan Singer "getting the band back together," pretty much ANY scene that contains even a speaking role will likely be considered prime real estate.

It will be interesting to see what's in store for Halle Berry's Storm when the Sentinel-centric X-Men: Days of Future Past hits theaters like a conjured tornado of awesomeness on July 18, 2014.


Justice League Movie Taken Over By Christopher Nolan?

Has the allegedly chaotic state of the Justice League live action movie lead to it getting a famous taskmaster? Well, according to a report by Latino Review, Warner Bros. studio has handed the reigns of their would-be franchise to the one and only Christopher Nolan.

As the story goes, Nolan would oversee the Justice League film as a producer armed with extreme discretion at his disposal. Possibly serving alongside him as co-producer could be Zack Snyder, director of this summer's Superman reboot, Man of Steel. Given how things fare at the box-office for the Blue Bomber's bounce-back, Snyder may even be given the okay to direct the ensuing mega-movie. However, the primary theme of the report is that Christopher Nolan, much like Joss Whedon with Marvel Studios' Avengers films and J.J. Abrams overseeing both Star Trek and Star Wars, would be a puppet master in his own right for Warner Bros.' ambitious plans to recreate the lucrative crossover magic that worked so swimmingly for Marvel.

What could be the most notable benefit of this proposed "Chris-tatorship," may come in the form of the renewed feasibility that Nolan's Batman, Christian Bale could reprise his role for the spinoff film, starting the team-up of DC Comics titans alongside Henry Cavill's Superman. While Bale has said that last year's The Dark Knight Rises would be his last grizzled-voiced outing in the black bat-suit, he also did indicate that a possible return depended solely upon Nolan's involvement.

How did things come to this? Apparently, through a bit of trial and error.

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Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes Gets Gary Oldman

It appears that next year's sequel, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes will be graced with the presence of one of the movie biz's premiere chameleons in Gary Oldman.

He's fought alongside Batman, taken on Soviet spies, broke up The Sex Pistols, and has even escaped from Azkaban. However, according to the report by Deadline, Oldman has been thrust into this ape apocalypse allegory as a character called "Dreyfus," described as a leader in the human resistance movement. Putting that into context, this film, a sequel to 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes, will reportedly take place some 15 years after the last film in a world that is overrun by the Adderall Apes. The focus will shift between a small group of San Francisco-based scientist survivors and a returning motion-captured Andy Serkis as principal of the primates, Caesar.  

With the recent announcement that Jason Clarke of Zero Dark Thirty was cast as the film's still-unnamed protagonist, we can assume that he heads the small ragtag group who eventually meet up with Oldman's larger, more formal resistance cell. However, it's still anyone's guess whether Oldman's character will be a friendly sage type or if he ends up being an unhinged megalomaniacal antagonist created by the unfavorable elements of the ape apocalypse.

Regardless, the addition of Oldman, just coming off his final go as James Gordon in The Dark Knight Rises and soon set for next year's RoboCop remake, is a great coup for this sequel which makes the somewhat risky move of not featuring its previous star, James Franco. A name like Oldman's attached to the film should alleviate some of that risk.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes flings bodily waste at paying onlookers at theaters on May 23, 2014.


The Hobbit: There And Back Again Pushed To December 2014

The third and final installment of the current Middle Earth trilogy, The Hobbit: There and Back Again has been given a new release date. Originally scheduled to conclude at theaters on July 18, 2014, fans will now have to patiently wait five whole months for its new release date: December 17, 2014.

If anything, the move should satiate any potential OCD objectors since the new date falls more in line with the traditional December releases of The Lord of the Rings trilogy from 2001-2003, last year's The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (December 14) and this year's The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (December 13). However, speculation is attributing the reason for the move being primarily due to the Shire swan song sharing its previous July 18 release date with a little obscure art house movie called X-Men: Days of Future Past. (You know, the upcoming X-Men sequel that's essentially going to star EVERYONE, EVER?) Thus, the move was a wise choice, ensuring that this new trilogy does not sail off to Valinor with the narrative of a knock-down, drag-out box-office struggle dominating headlines.

For fans who have been waiting over a decade to get this live-action take on the iconic kick-off to J.R.R. Tolkien's literary universe, the five month delay shouldn't be too much of a struggle; especially with the second film, The Desolation of Smaug still being relatively fresh in their minds.

Likely containing heart-wrenching drama, a sublime take on "The Battle of Five Armies," and a tear-jerking conclusion on its menu, The Hobbit: There and Back Again will hopefully still prove itself to be an unforgettable conclusion to Peter Jackson's Middle Earth movies. -- Just five months later.


Ouya Ships To Backers On March 28

Posted February 28, 2013 - By Adam Rosenberg

Ouya Console To Support XBMC Media Player, TuneIn Radio Service

Ouya the company confirms on Kickstarter that Ouya the console will ship to backers on March 28, 2013. A wider launch follows in June, at which point you'll be able to grab it from Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, and Target for $99.99.

In related news, thatgamecompany co-founder Kellee Santiago is now taking point at Ouya on developer relations. She had this to say in a statement: "Ouya gets it. This is the first console company that really understands how important it is to remove the barriers to development. By freeing up the development process, Ouya is opening up new doors in console gaming."

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Hulk Solo Movie Rumors Now In Question?

As some may recall, Latino Review dropped a major bombshell back in the beginning of this month with what seemed to be a detailed run-down of where Mark Ruffalo's version of The Hulk from The Avengers winds up throughout Marvel Studios' continuity-connected Phase Two and Phase Three set of films. Well, according to a report from Ain't It Cool News, that whole thing may have been an illusion concocted by Loki, as their sources say it is "1,000% inaccurate."

To briefly recap, the LR rumor implied that Ruffalo's Hulk would start to lose control of his destructive rage, culminating in a moment in Marvel's Phase Two denouement, The Avengers 2 in 2015, where members of a movie version of Marvel's team of powerful super-thinkers, The Illuminati exile Hulk in space. He eventually lands on the war-torn planet, Sakaar, setting things up for a solo film that would be a take on the popular comic book storyline, "Planet Hulk." This would allegedly culminate in Phase Three with The Avengers 3 where Hulk, bitter over his exile, returns to Earth with an invading army of aliens; a take on the comic book storyline, "World War Hulk." -- So, all of that, at least, according to AICN, is NOT happening.

AICN's "debunking" (if you will) of the LR story also brings up the infeasibility of a "Planet Hulk" solo movie being rooted in the idea that the Bruce Banner character was not in the storyline. While it is true that you can't just have an all-CG Hulk movie without a human protagonist, it's an aspect that could easily be fixed by simply tweaking the story and having Hulk turn to Banner when he's not doing his "Alien Gladiator" thing in the arenas of Sakaar. (After all, The Avengers introduced the idea that Banner CAN change into Hulk at will, since he's "always angry.") While we don't know for sure what kind of Hulk solo movie could be in the works, it is all but inevitable that we are getting one, considering that Ruffalo signed a six-picture deal with Marvel. (And they can't all be cameos and Avengers sequels.)

Of course, Marvel Studios, who prefer to keep their secrets close, aren't likely to step in and settle the debate. That leaves these conflicting reports as fodder for a potential (albeit gentlemanly, given the AICN report's civil language) battle of Internet entertainment journalists. At this point, there's no substantive evidence leading one to conclude who is right or wrong.


PlayStation 4's User Interface Revealed In New Screens

Those who watched Sony's PlayStation Meeting 2013 no doubt spotted a handful of early looks at the fall 2013 console's user interface. Now there are some actual screens pulled from the presentation, shared by Sony. You'll see what appears to be the dashboard, a player's profile page, some looks at the Share interface, and a peek at what might show up on mobile platforms.

Hit the jump for a couple more looks, or head over to All Games Beta for the full load of images.

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Tags: Videogames

Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Joins The Esquire Network Lineup On April 24th

Starting Wednesday, April 24th, episodes of the Emmy nominated Late Night with Jimmy Fallon will air on Esquire Network Monday through Friday at 7PM ET/PT, one week after they first premiere on NBC. Late Night marks the first talk show addition to the network's programming slate.

Late Night with Jimmy Fallon joins previously announced series originals Knife Fight and The Getway, along with acquired comedies Parks and Recreation and Party Down. It's all part of Esquire Network's new programming lineup beginning April 22.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Reboot Gets New Release Date

It appears that the upcoming Michael Bay-produced Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot film will be emerging further down the pipeline than previously scheduled. Last set for May 16, 2014, the yet-to-be-titled franchise film revival is now set to emerge from its proverbial manhole on June 6, 2014.

For a project that has been delayed several times and at one point was even marked for Christmas 2013, the three-week move is probably not a huge deal. However, it is noteworthy that the May 16 date would have put it in direct debut competition with the Warner Bros. Godzilla reboot project starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Bryan Cranston, and Elizabeth Olsen. At the moment, June 6 should leave the mutated...err, alien reptilian foursome relatively unopposed from the initial wave of summer movie heavy hitters like Captain America: The Winter Soldier (April 4), The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (May 2), and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (May 23).

Yet, at the same time, the June 6 move jeopardizes its potential box-office longevity, putting it in competition with second wave summer heavies like Jurassic Park 4 (June 13), How to Train Your Dragon 2 (June 20), and, ironically enough, Michael Bay's other baby, Transformers 4 (June 27). The move was certainly a calculated gamble by Paramount.

One thing is for sure, when Nickelodeon laid down a cool $60 million back in 2009 to purchase the TMNT franchise, they came up with a carefully planned strategy to gets this franchise back to its early 1990's glory days. With the current animated series renewed for a second AND third season, it's clear that they have a lot riding on this tent-pole. The acquisition of a name like Michael Bay (even in just a producer capacity) and now the recent addition of Megan Fox to the cast seems to telegraph their desire to use the monolithically successful Transformers formula of old-school franchise revival. (Explosions, hot chicks in slow motion, ubiquitous product placement, followed by more explosions.)

Will it work? Well, that all depends on how this whole "Teenage Alien Ninja Turtles" angle ultimately plays out.


Need For Speed Most Wanted's CloudCompete System Announced

Electronic Arts has spent the past year and a half developing an online framework that allows the publisher to track a single gamer's identity (in EA titles, natch) across multiple platforms, as chief technology officer Rajat Taneja revealed in an interview with GamesBeat. From consoles to mobile platforms to EA's own Origin service, your profile and game progress can be tracked and carried over.

"Our strategic vision at EA is to create a single backend system so that we can truly embrace the secular trends in our industry that are creating massive growth for games. And we will be able to embrace all of the new business models that come with that," Taneja told GamesBeat. There's no word on when this new initiative will go live, though planned features include cross-platform communication within your social network and cross-platform game saves.

EA has been moving in this direction for awhile, with 2012's Need for Speed: Most Wanted employing a CloudCompete system that allows players to earn the in-game equivalent of XP for their profile regardless of which platform they're playing on. Taneja offers up quite a bit of info, so be sure to check out the full interview on GamesBeat.

Tags: Videogames

The Last of Us "Development Series Episode 1: Hush" Video »

Dev diaries often fall somewhere between "mildly interesting" and "total fluff," but you might be interested in this behind-the-scenes clip from Naughty Dog for The Last of Us. Little is shown in the way of new gameplay, but the three-minute short takes a closer look at the origin of the game's infected.

The Last of Us is set in a post-apocalyptic world that's been torn apart by a global plague triggered by a deadly fungus. It spreads via spores released by the infected at their most advanced stage, a point at which the human form has become little more than a shell that houses the plague. Cheerful stuff, right?

The Last of Us comes to PlayStation 3 consoles on May 7, 2013.


Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag Confirmed By Ubisoft

The rumors are true: Ubisoft's next Assassin's Creed game is called Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag. The publisher confirmed the title and offered a first official look at title art on its Facebook page, promising a more complete reveal on Monday, March 4, 2013, at 12pm ET.

The art jives with leaked materials that were shared by Kotaku earlier this week. One poster offered a look at an Assassin-hooded fellow fighting with what appear to be pirates (a Jolly Roger flag is clearly visible in the background). The reverse side of the poster shows what appears to be a map of the game's world. In related news, All Games Beta shared a trio of box art images that suggest the game is headed to PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Wii U; the PS3 version apparently includes 60 minutes of exclusive content as well.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Has Its Norman Osborn

It appears that next year's sequel, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 has just procured yet another iconic baddie to tangle with 'ole Web-Head. It is being reported that actor, Chris Cooper has landed the role of Norman Osborn, the influential industrialist who's also been known to covort above the skies of New York as the maniacal Green Goblin.

In what is already becoming a cast stacked with big name stars portraying big name characters, the 61 year-old Cooper, known for roles in The Bourne Identity, American Beauty, and The Town will fill the role of one of the most important characters in the Spider-Man mythos with Osborn; a role played by Willem Dafoe in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man film trilogy.

Interestingly enough, Cooper's version of the character may be more nuanced than Dafoe's. Osborn's name and presence were certainly felt in last year's The Amazing Spider-Man, especially with the idea of his company, Oscorp, in looking for a cure for Norman's terminal illness, being responsible for the experiment which accidentally gave Andrew Garfield's Peter Parker his spider-powers. However, the report indicates that Cooper's Norman Osborn, who will juggle a role as father to Peter's friend, Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan), may actually start out as a mentor of sorts to the clandestine Wall-Crawler before his eventual "heel turn" into the demented emerald air-gliding pumpkin-bomb-pusher. (Which, in the comics, was the result of a chemical accident, leaving him with multiple personalities.)

What might affirm the idea of the character not stepping into the Goblin costume just yet, is the fact the film already has two major villains lined up with Jamie Foxx as Electro and Paul Giamatti as Rhino. However, the last film implied that Osborn was as a shadowy puppet master behind the scenes of the film's events and we'll certainly see that aspect explored in this sequel. Also, the relationships he establishes with Peter Parker and his girlfriend, Oscorp lab intern, Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) will also prove pivotal since Gwen famously meets her death at the Goblin's hands in a 1973 issue of The Amazing Spider-Man that is widely considered to be the culmination of the Silver Age of comic books. (A fate that will most likely be echoed at some point in this film series.)

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 remotely pilots its goblin glider to hit theaters on May 2, 2014.


THQ Starts

Folding publisher THQ sold off its biggest and most valuable assets in a January 2013 auction, and now it's been confirmed that the rest of its holdings will be sold off in a second auction. Initial bids must be submitted by April 1 and final bids must follow two weeks later, on April 15. The entire process is expected to conclude in mid-May.

THQ's remaining properties are being divided into six separate lots. Four of those lots connect to a single franchise: Darksiders, Red Faction, Homeworld, and MX. The other two lots amount to "Other Owned Software" and "Other Licensed Software." The former includes titles like Destroy All Humans!, de Blob, and Titan Quest; the latter's highlights include Supreme Commander, Worms, and Costume Quest.

Read more about the auction and see a full breakdown of the assets to be sold in the official press release.

Tags: Videogames

Fantastic Four Reboot Gets Polished


Posted February 27, 2013 - By Joseph Baxter

Fantastic Four Reboot Gets Polished

It appears that the long-discussed Fantastic Four reboot project is still on deck over at Twentieth Century Fox. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Seth Grahame-Smith has been brought on board for what is being referred to as some "polish screenwriting." (And that's "polish," the verb, rather than a setup for a potential ethnic joke.)

There was plenty of movement on this project last summer when Josh Trank of Chronicle was brought on board to occupy the director's chair. However, half a year later, we find that very little has progressed with the project, which has been in the works since early 2009 in the more immediate aftermath of the last Fantastic Four film franchise which starred, among others, Jessica Alba and future Captain America, Chris Evans. -- That was, until the recent news that Kick-Ass and X-Men: First Class director, Matthew Vaughn was brought on board the film as producer.

Now, it seems that the inertia may have been attributed to issues with the script which was picked up from a relatively unknown commodity in scribe, Jeremy Slater. As a result, the novelist/satirist/screenwriter, Grahame-Smith of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and Dark Shadows fame has been brought in to perform a bit of literary feng shui to the existing script by Slater. It does now appear that the studio is providing experienced guidance for the new creative team.

What could this mean for the live action revival of Marvel Comics' radiation-riddled warriors of right?

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