Guardians of the Galaxy is closing in on its Star Lord. Check out the first photo from Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, and Nick Frost's apocalyptic World's End. Hugh Jackman reveals that The Wolverine is a sequel to a surprising movie. Plus a couple more Doctor Who previews!
Spoilers from here on out!
Top image from Star Trek Into Darkness
Benedict Cumberbatch offers some more insight into his role as the villainous John Harrison:
"When J.J. described the role to me… he described someone who was, in movie terms, a mixture of Hannibal Lecter, Jack in The Shining, and the Joker in Batman... He's someone who has enormous physical strength. He's someone who is incredibly dangerous, both as a physical entity and through the use of various technologies and weapons and who performs acts of what I would describe as terrorism. He's also a psychological master. He manipulates the minds of those around him to do his bidding in a very, very subtle way."
J.J. Abrams also weighs in on how Harrison's presence shapes the sequel:
So this movie doesn't require you have seen the first movie. The characters are a group of people who have recently come together and find themselves up against this incredibly terrifying force. His name is John Harrison and he is sort of an average –- that is what makes him so scary –- he is just an average guy who works in an organization called Starfleet, and he turns against the group because he has got this back-story and this kind of amazing secret agenda. After two very violent attacks, one in London and one in the US, our characters have to go after this guy and apprehend him. And it is a far more complicated and difficult thing then they ever anticipated. "Into Darkness" is very much about how intense it gets and really what they are up against.
But Abrams also hints strongly that this film has an unabashedly happy ending:
I don't like going to the movies to feel bad. I don't like going to the movies to feel depressed and feel diminished. The reason you go to the movies is to feel bigger and stronger and happier. So this is a movie that they certainly go ‘Into Darkness,' but I would be the wrong director if it was about characters staying there. This is very much a movie about hope, about love, about romance, and about facing something that is truly terrifying and finding a way through the connection of your family and surviving and being stronger afterwards.
Marvel Studios is reportedly down to two choices for the part of Star Lord, the leader of the movie's titular cosmic superhero team. Writer-director James Gunn's two choices are reportedly onetime Chuck star Zachary Levi and Cloud Atlas and Across the Universe actor Jim Sturgess. Levi is a particularly intriguing option inasmuch as he's already playing Warriors Three member Fandral in Thor: The Dark World, making him potentially the first actor to do double duty within the Marvel Cinematic Universe (Chris Evans and Idris Elba have both played multiple Marvel roles, but each played one of their roles for a different studio). Anyway, though Levi and Sturgess would appear to be the finalists, there are also reports that Marvel will screen-test an unnamed third actor sometime this week. [Variety]
While numerous reports have suggested the new Wolverine movie would exist in a murky place outside the other movies' increasingly tangled continuity, star Hugh Jackman now confirms the movie actually explores the fallout of a previous film:
Okay, the movie takes place after X-Men: The Last Stand. My character is at his lowest. He is supposed to be able to heal himself, but he may encounter someone who has worked out a way to really hurt him. And there is a cameo from one of the past X-Men in it.
Here's the first image from Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz makers Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, and Nick Frost's new film, which follows a bunch of fortysomething friends attempting an epic pub crawl that just happens to be on the same night as the apocalypse. Here's a first look at Pegg, Frost, their Hot Fuzz costar Paddy Considine, Sherlock and The Hobbit's Martin Freeman, and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides actor Eddy Marsan. [Shock Till You Drop]
Our long national nightmare is over, people, assuming our long national nightmare centered on whether Kristen Stewart was coming back for the Snow White and the Huntsman sequel. Here's her Cicero-worthy oratory on the subject:
"Oh, it's gonna be fuckin' amazing. No, I'm so excited about it, it's crazy. I'm not allowed [to talk about it]. The other day I said that there was a strong possibility that we're going to make a sequel, and that's very true, but everyone was like, 'Whoa, stop talking about it.' So no, I'm totally not allowed to talk about it. Oh my God. Fuck, yeah. Absolutely. And we've got a really amazing... [smiles] So, yeah. It's all good. [laughs]"
I think we're all better people for having read... whatever the hell that was. [ET Online]
Here's a sneak peek at tomorrow's Christmas special, "The Snowmen", featuring interviews with showrunner Steven Moffat and stars Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman. [Blogtor Who]
And here's another preview clip. [Life, Doctor Who, and Combom]
Here's a promo for the next episode and the final one before the two-hour finale, "The Boy Must Live", which airs January 11. [Fringe Television]
Here's the description for the episode:
TIME TO SAVE THE WORLD IS RUNNING OUT ON AN ALL-NEW FRINGE FRIDAY, JANUARY 11, ON FOX — As time dramatically ticks down toward the end of this acclaimed series, Peter, Olivia and Walter stop at nothing to save the universe from Observer rule. Walter enters the infamous deprivation tank in an attempt to uncover a key piece of information about the mysterious figure, Donald. Meanwhile, Captain Windmark sets out on a revealing mission of his own as long-standing questions are answered
And here's the first promo photo for the episode. [SpoilerTV]
Here are some promo photos for episode eleven, "2πR", which is due to air January 3. [SpoilerTV]
And here's a short synopsis for the following episode twelve, "Prisoner's Dilemma", which airs January 10:
CARTER PLAYS A DANGEROUS GAME WITH THE FBI AS REESE IS CONFRONTED BY FOES BOTH OLD AND NEW AND FUSCO RACES TO SAVE THE TEAM'S LATEST POI: SUPERMODEL KAROLINA KURKOVA – While Carter engages in mental warfare with the FBI to help Reese evade Agent Donnelly's narrowing focus, Reese crosses paths with foes both old and new. Meanwhile, Det. Fusco is forced to fly solo to help the team's newest POI: supermodel Karolina Kurkova.
Here are some promo photos from the midseason premiere, "The Cricket Game", which airs January 6. The official synopsis is below. [KSiteTV]
EMMA THINKS REGINA MAY BE INNOCENT OF MURDERING ONE OF THE TOWN'S MOST BELOVED FAIRYTALE CHARACTERS, AND SNOW WHITE AND PRINCE CHARMING SET ABOUT PLANNING THE EVIL QUEEN'S PUBLIC EXECUTION, ON ABC'S "ONCE UPON A TIME" – Regina is accused of murdering one of the town's most beloved fairytale characters - but only Emma senses that she may be innocent. Meanwhile, back in the fairytale land that was, after capturing the Evil Queen, Snow White and Prince Charming set about planning her public execution in order to rid the land of her murderous tyranny.
ABC has also released these behind-the-scenes photos from the filming of the episode. [SpoilerTV]
Here are full descriptions for the two subsequent episodes, "The Outsider" and "In the Name of the Brother":
MR. GOLD ATTEMPTS TO DISCOVER IF HIS SPELL WILL ALLOW HIM TO CROSS THE STORYBROOKE BORDER AND GO IN SEARCH OF HIS SON, AND BELLE MEETS UP WITH MULAN TO SLAY A FEARSOME YAOGUAI, ON ABC'S "ONCE UPON A TIME" – Mr. Gold finds an unwilling test subject to see if a spell he has concocted will allow him to cross the border of Storybrooke - without losing his memory - and go in search of his son, Bae; Belle stumbles upon a vengeful Hook in the Storybrooke harbor whose main goal is to eradicate Rumplestiltskin; and Mary Margaret and David go house hunting in search of a bigger place to live. Meanwhile, in the fairytale land that was, Belle meets Mulan as the two set out to slay a fearsome beast called the Yaoguai, who has been ravaging the land.
In the Name of the Brother
AFRAID THAT THE STRANGER MAY HAVE SEEN MAGIC BEFORE HIS ACCIDENT, SOME OF THE STORYBROOKE RESIDENTS WANT DR. WHALE TO LET HIM DIE SO THAT HE CANNOT EXPOSE THEIR TRUE IDENTITIES TO THE WORLD, AND VICTOR TRIES TO PROVE TO HIS FATHER THAT HE CAN BRING BACK THE DEAD, ON ABC'S "ONCE UPON A TIME" – Dr. Whale is tasked with mending Hook's wounds and performing surgery on the stranger whose car crashed upon entering Storybrooke. But some of the townspeople fear that the stranger may have seen magic - which could expose their true identities to the world - and think that leaving him to die would be the best solution. Meanwhile, as Mr. Gold tries to reunite with a despondent Belle, Cora attempts to reunite with daughter Regina; and in the land that was, Victor desperately wants to prove to his disapproving father that he can, indeed, bring back the dead.
Here's the description for episode twelve, "Cold War", which airs January 16:
THE COMMON COLD INFECTS HIDDEN HILLS, PUTTING THE WEAVERS UNDER QUARANTINE — When the entire Weaver family gets sick, it forces the Bird-Kersees to confront something new and terrifying — the common cold. The Bird-Kersees — especially Larry — can't understand why Debbie takes care of her family even though she is exposing herself to their cold. Having learned there is no cure for colds, Larry makes the community quarantine the Weaver house, but Reggie has other plans.
Here's the complete description for the tenth episode, "After School Special", which kicks off the second half of season four on January 17:
REBEKAH IS BACK WITH A VENGEANCE - Appearing unexpectedly at Mystic Falls High, Rebekah (Claire Holt) wastes no time trying to force Stefan (Paul Wesley), Elena (Nina Dobrev) and Caroline (Candice Accola) to answer her questions about the search for a cure, leading to a bombshell piece of information from Elena. When Bonnie's (Kat Graham) father, Rudy Owens (guest star Rick Worthy, 'Supernatural'), accepts the role of Interim Mayor, he makes it a priority to protect his daughter, who isn't at all comfortable with the role he suddenly wants to play in her life. Professor Shane (guest star David Alpay) continues to encourage Bonnie to believe in her powers, but he soon finds himself in danger when he reveals too much to the wrong person. Later, Caroline does her best to comfort Tyler (Michael Trevino) after a violent confrontation. Meanwhile, at the lake house, Damon and Matt (Zach Roerig) train Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen), trying to raise his game as a hunter, but Klaus (Joseph Morgan) is impatient with their progress and intervenes to speed up the process.
Additional reporting by Amanda Yesilbas. Morning Spoilers will return on December 27.