This Week in Film: The Hateful Eight Trailer, Scorsese/DiCaprio Reunite, Episode IX, Straight Outta Compton Opens Big

Posted: August 18, 2015 by Daniel Simpson (PG Cooper) in News

Much of this week’s film news was dominated by Disney’s “D23” event, with interviews and photos from Disney, Pixar, Lucasfilm, and Marvel all being released. As far as news, the biggest item is the announcement that Episode IX of the Star Wars saga will be directed by Colin Trevorrow, fresh off the success of Jurassic World. I only had a middling reaction to Jurassic World, but most of those problems stem from the script, not Trevorrow’s choices. He is a logical choice to take the reigns of the epic space opera. The film is set for a 2019 release. Also in Star Wars news; the cast of the spin-off film Rogue One, due in 2016, has been revealed. Focusing on the rebels who stole the Death Star plans R2-D2 carried in the original film, Rogue One‘s eclectic cast includes Felicity Jones, Forest  Whitaker, and Mads Mikkelson, among many others. You can see the full cast here.

New poster for The Force Awakens, designed by Drew Struzan.

New poster for The Force Awakens, designed by Drew Struzan.

Also at D23, Pixar teased several of their new movies, including Finding Dory and The Incredibles II. It has also been revealed that Toy Story 4 will focus on the love story between Woody and Bo Peep. Toy Story 4 is scheduled to be released June 16th, 2017. Disney also announced a new animated film titled Gigantic. Based on Jack and the Beanstalk, the film follows a Spanish explorer who meets a 60-foot tall eleven year old, in the process discovering a world of giants. Directed by Nathan Greno (Tangled) and with the songs written by Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez (Frozen), the film is due out in 2018.

For myself, the highlight of the week was the first trailer for Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight. The trailer has the energy and style one expects from a Tarantino production, along with some glorious music, beautiful imagery, and a colourful cast. If you haven’t seen it yet, here’s a link. The film hits theaters December 25th and I can’t wait. Between this and Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s The Revenant, it’s going to be an awesome Christmas. Bryan Cranton’s biopic of blacklisted Hollywood screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, simple titled Trumbo, also received it’s first trailer. The film looks very Oscar-baity, but the cast is really strong so I’ll give it a chance. Directed by Jay Roach, the film is due for a Oscar season release of November 6th. Rounding out our trailer news is the new Bradley Cooper vehicle Burnt (October 23rd), the Anton Corbijn directed James Dean biopic Life (Fall 2015), and the action thriller The Keeping Room (September 25th).

Acclaimed team Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio will be reuniting for an adaptation of The Devil in the White City, the true story of American serial killer H.H. Holmes, who will be played by DiCaprio. The pair’s last collaboration, The Wolf of Wall Street earned both men Oscar nominations along with a Best Picture nomination. In other casting news; Naomi Watts will lead Collin Trevorrow’s Book of Henry, from an original screenplay by Gregg Hurwitz. No release date is set, but it is reasonable to believe the film will be out before Trevorrow’s Episode IX. Aaron Eckhart has joined Clint Eastwood’s yet untitled biopic of Captain Sully. Eckhart will play co-pilot to Tom Hanks’ Captain Sully. Patrick Stewart has also confirmed he will have a substantial role in the upcoming Wolverine film, and not merely a cameo. The film, set to be Hugh Jackman’s last outing as famous mutant Wolverine, will be released March 3rd, 2017.

Closing out the week is the weekend Box-Office. NWA biopic opened to a highly impressive $60.2 million gross. This is another major financial win for Universal studios this year, whose other victories include Furious 7Minions, and Jurassic WorldThe Man from U.N.C.L.E, by contrast, opened to a disappointing $13.5 million, far less than expected. Perhaps people are still riding high on comparable spy movie Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation. In it’s third week, the Tom Cruise action film scored another $17 million for a domestic total of 138.1 million thus far. However perhaps most notable is Fantastic Four‘s continuing failure. After opening to an underwhelming $25 million it’s first week, the Superhero movie has dropped a whopping 69%, grossing just $8 million. It seems unlikely the film will earn back it’s $120 million budget domestically.

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