The Dark Knight Rises unleashes new footage, new posters, and a closer look at Bane's and Catwoman's costumes. The Hobbit completes its unexpected journey... or, at least, its principal photography. Once Upon a Time casts its newest Disney princesses. Marc Webb discusses Gwen Stacy's long-term future. Plus a comprehensive previews of Alphas season two!
It's spoilers all the way down!
Top image from The Hobbit.
Here's a new international TV spot, which actually seems to feature some previously unseen footage. [/Film]
Global treasure Michael Caine discusses what it's been like playing Alfred, in the process offering a couple revealingly non-revealing hints about his role in Christopher Nolan's final Batman movie:
The butler is an essential character in the whole movie; he's not massive but that pleased me. I don't want to do massive.
But you get some great moments...
I get some great moments. I have a couple in this last one, too.
He also gives his take on what sets this series apart from other big event movies:
For me, it was incredible because the great thing about it was - and the secret of the success of this picture as opposed to those massive blockbusters out there - is the stunts and special effects are real. There is very, very little computer generated imaging in it. All these other ones you see a million people marching towards you, you know they've photographed ten and just kept doubling it up and up and up. In ours, when the stuntman falls off the roof, it's a real man falling off the roof and hitting the bottom. And I think that is very important. It's very human and I suppose the class of acting is a little better... For a start both Batman and the butler are Oscar-winners! (laughs). Gary Oldman, who's the chief of police, nearly became one himself, do you see what I mean? So it's a very high standard of acting, and a very high standard of reality. That's the secret of that series, for me.
Here are some more posters. [IGN]
And here are some close-up shots of the movie's costumes, from a recent exhibition. More pics at the link. [Comic Book Movie]
Director Marc Webb discusses the larger structure of the franchise, which is officially going to be at least a trilogy:
I wanted a universe that could sustain a larger story, and the broader arcs I worked out with Jamie Vanderbilt early on. Obviously you want the movie to work on its own, but because so many of these movies typically have sequels, I wanted us to do a little bit of groundwork that could pay off in later movies. The mystery that surrounds Peter Parker's parents is the long shadow that's cast over all of the story, and there's a relationship between Peter's parents and Norman Osborn, and Oscorp, all that stuff… so much of the story is in and around Oscorp; Oscorp is the place from which all crazy shit emerges in this universe, and I like that idea, that simple notion that this obelisk, this Tower of Babel, is like a splinter in the side of the universe. All of the stories come out of there.
He confirmed that he will honor Gwen Stacy's story as told in the comics, which of course means that, yes, she's eventually going to die. When asked if he "
out a trilogy for Gwen's character", he answered in the affirmative, which maybe implies Gwen will die in the third movie — but I wouldn't assume anything on that point. Finally, he offered some more highly cryptic thoughts on the mid-credits scene, in which an imprisoned Dr. Curt Connors is approached by someone identifying themselves as an Oscorp representative:
Well, I wanted to acknowledge that the mystery of the parents was ongoing. That's the long shadow that's cast over Peter's life. And I love Curt Connors and I love Rhys [Ifans], and I think it's important to acknowledge that there are a lot of things going on in this universe even if we're not aware of them or haven't seen them in this film. There's a bigger universe at hand.
Would you identify the shadowy figure we see visiting Connors in his jail cell?
Is it a familiar character to the Marvel universe?
I invite your speculation. [Laughs] How can I give that away? I'm sure the internet will provide a lot of interesting ideas. You can choose which one you want.
There's more at the link, including quite a bit of discussion about the current movie. [Movieline]
Peter Jackson sent out this note last night confirming he has completed principal photography on the two Hobbit movies:
We made it! Shoot day 266 and the end of principal photography on The Hobbit. Thanks to our fantastic cast and crew for getting us this far, and to all of you for your support! Next stop, the cutting room. Oh, and Comic Con!
Cheers, Peter J
Here are some brand new promo images. [Coming Soon]
Here's a pair of sneak peeks for this Sunday's episode, "Boot N' Rally Ally.'
Here's a promo poster for Comic Con, spotlighting new season three cast members Danai Gurira as Michonne and David Morrissey as the Governor. [Shock Till You Drop]
Sarah Bolger, best known for playing Queen Mary I on The Tudors, has reportedly been cast in the recurring role of Queen Aurora, better known as Sleeping Beauty, for season two. This may well mean the return of True Blood's Kristen Bauer van Straten as Malificent, considering how intertwined the two characters' stories are. There's also the question of whether this quashes those recent rumors that Bolger would be joining the third season of Game of Thrones — I'd think the Game of Thrones production schedule would be too intense to allow for cast members to have recurring roles on network shows, though I suppose it depends entirely on the size of Bolger's respective roles. Either way, I think we can officially consider the Game of Thrones rumor to be considerably less likely than it was before this news. [TV Line]
Meanwhile, Sucker Punch and The Hangover: Part II actress Jamie Chung has reportedly been cast in the recurring role of the Chinese warrior Mulan. Entertainment Weekly's website has these additional details on just what role the character, who seems like a potentially odd fit for Storybrooke but an excellent fit for selling some old Mulan DVDs, will play on the show:
She's described as having been trained in weaponry, tracking and riding, but "has a spirituality that enhances her tactical and strategic abilities. She has suffered past betrayals, so her trust is hard-won, but once she gives her oath of friendship her loyalty knows no boundaries." Also, "when she falls in love, she falls hard."
Syfy has released a ton of information about season two, including an overarching plot synopsis and an extensive list of guest stars. Let's start with the plot overview for the second season:
The new season picks up eight months after last year's stunning season finale with the stage set for an explosive turn of events at the Binghamton facility (the Guantanamo of the Alpha world) that could have devastating, far-reaching consequences. Dr. Lee Rosen, having exposed the existence of Alphas to the unsuspecting public, finds himself discredited and imprisoned by a government desperate to cover up his stunning revelation. Some of the team have disbanded and without Dr. Rosen's care and guidance, have regressed to their old, destructive ways. They must now battle their individual demons, reunite and try to save their own.
And now for the rundown of pretty much every major guest star this season:
Sean Astin (The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Rudy) plays Roland, an Alpha who has a bizarrely absorptive brain, which allows him to assume the memories of anyone close to him and then replay them like a tape recorder. C. Thomas Howell (Southland) portrays Eli Aquino, an intense Alpha with super-speed who is bent on revenge. Lauren Holly (NCIS) guests as Senator Charlotte Burton, a government official with mysterious ties to a member of the Alphas team. Summer Glau (Dollhouse, Firefly) reprises her season one role as Skylar Adams, an Alpha who possesses a 200+ IQ and is an electronics mastermind. Steve Byers (Immortals, Total Recall) plays John Bennett, a new member of the tactical team from the U.S. Department of Defense assigned to the Alphas team. Kandyse McClure (Battlestar Galactica) guests as Agnes, an attractive but distant Alpha with the ability to see into people's minds merely by touching them. John Pyper-Ferguson (Caprica, Brothers and Sisters) reprises his recurring role of Stanton Parish, the "Perfect Alpha." Kathleen Munroe (Haven, Stargate Universe) returns as Dr. Rosen's daughter, Dani, an empath Alpha who can transfer emotions from herself to others and is secretly a follower of Stanton Parish. Mahershala Ali (Treme, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) reprises his role as Nathan Clay the head of a tactical unit within the U.S. Department of Defense tasked with dealing with rogue Alphas. Noah Reid (Rookie Blue) portrays Adam Gordon a young man grief-stricken by the death of his young sister, Maggie. However, he becomes convinced she is alive and in need of his help.
Finally, here's a description of the new addition to the main cast:
Erin Way (Detroit 187, Private Practice) joins the cast this season as Kat, a mysterious young loner whose Alpha ability equips her with perfect muscle memory, making her a "quick study." But while her skills are permanent, her personal memories are short-lived.
Here's a super brief description of episode seven, "The Politics of Time":
Trust and loyalty become issues for Kiera as evidence points to Carlos in the death of a reporter.
Additional reporting by Rob H. Dawson and Charlie Jane Anders.