This week’s Ketchup brings you more headlines from the world of film development news, covering such titles as Cruella 2, The Munsters, the third Quiet Place, and a Bernie Mac biopic.
(Photo by ©Universal courtesy Everett Collection)
Universal Pictures had originally planned to release Jurassic World: Dominon this week, but the pandemic pushed the whole project back a year to June 10, 2022 instead. Universal is using that extra year to get fans and press alike excited about the dinosaur sequel, which this week included a press event in which an extended preview was revealed that will play exclusively before every IMAX screening of F9 when it’s released in two weeks on June 25, 2021. The preview starts with basically an “origin story” for one of the most iconic Jurassic Park dinosaurs (or rather, a dinosaur clone), and also shows off three new dinosaurs never before seen in a Jurassic Park or Jurassic World film. In the meantime, you can also see the first Jurassic World: Dominion poster right here, which basically shows where the DNA for one of the dinosaurs actually came from (though we already know this from Jurassic Park). Jurasic world: Dominion promises a huge ensemble cast made up not just of returning Jurassic World cast like Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, but also the three original Jurassic Park stars Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, and Sam Neill.
(Photo by Paramount Pictures)
The COVID-19 pandemic held some movies back just a few months, while others, like Black Widow, F9, and No Time to Die were delayed over a year. Another was the science fiction thriller sequel A Quiet Place Part II (Certified Fresh at 91%), which in the original plan would have debuted just two years after the first film. As it turns out, that shorter gap between films will come between A Quiet Place Part II and a third film, which is being described more as a spinoff than a direct sequel. The Quiet Place spinoff will be directed by Jeff Nichols, whose films to date have been a combination of both indie-flavored drama (Loving, Mud) and indie-flavored science fiction (Take Shelter, Midnight Special), with the argument to be made that Nichols’ films may have had some influence on A Quiet Place. Nichols and Paramount aren’t revealing what the spinoff will entail, exactly, but it’s already scheduled for March 31, 2023. In related news, Jeff Nichols is also developing a separate science fiction project for Paramount Pictures, though we don’t know much of anything about it yet.
(Photo by Laurie Sparham/©Disney+)
It was just a week ago that the live action 101 Dalmatians prequel Cruella (Fresh at 74%) debuted on Disney+ and in theaters, but Walt Disney Pictures has already revealed that the studio has begun development on a sequel, with Emma Stone expected to reprise her role. This sequel will effectively be the sixth feature film in Disney’s 101 Dalmatians franchise, following the original animated 1961 film, its 2003 sequel, two live action Glenn Close movies, and Cruella. Craig Gillepsie, who directed Cruella, and screenwriter Tony McNamara are both also expected to return. It’s also not yet known (for sure) if the Cruella sequel will directly reprise any of the story beats from any of those first four films.
(Photo by JA/Everett Collection)
Lionsgate is in the midst of a casting spree for their ambitious action sequel John Wick: Chapter 4 (5/27/2022), which started two weeks ago with the casting of pop star Rina Sawayama, and continued last week with the casting of Donnie Yen. The latter might have seemed not that out of left field (given Donnie Yen’s action pedigree), but this week’s news about Bill Skarsgård, aka Pennywise the Clown from the recent IT movies, might be a bit more unexpected. Shamier Anderson (Netflix’s Stowaway) also joined John Wick: Chapter 4 this week, and Laurence Fishburne also confirmed that he will reprising his role as the Bowery King from John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (Certified Fresh at 89%). Fishburne isn’t expected to return as Morpheus in The Matrix 4 (12/22/2021), but Warner Bros this week sort of “stealth announced” that Christina Ricci has been cast as… we don’t know.
(Photo by ©Universal Pictures)
Successful film directors tend to collaborate with the same actors frequently, and for Todd Haynes, that performer has most often been Julianne Moore, who starred or co-starred in Safe (Certified Fresh at 87%), Far from Heaven (Certified Fresh at 87%), I’m Not There (Certified Fresh at 77%), and Wonderstruck (Fresh at 68%). Moore and Haynes will soon team up for their fifth film, as Moore is now signed to co-star in a drama called May December with Natalie Portman. May December is described as being about a woman (Moore) “who 20 years earlier had a notorious tabloid romance with a man who was 23 years younger than her” who is approached by a Hollywood actress (Portman) who is about to portray her in a movie.
(Photo by ©Focus Features)
Even as it was actively happening, many people were quickly able to figure out that the Harvey Weinstein #MeToo revelations of 2018 were inevitably going to be the subject of at least one feature film. There are, no doubt, other projects in development, but it appears that the first project out in production will be a drama called She Said, about the New York Times journalists Megan Twohey and Jodi Kantor who first broke the earliest stories about allegations against film producer Harvey Weinstein. Universal Pictures is developing She Said, and this week the studio hired Carey Mulligan (Promising Young Woman) and Zoe Kazan (The Big Sick) to star as Twohey and Kantor, respectively.
(Photo by Elizabeth Goodenough, Kristin Callahan/Everett Collection)
Perhaps it’s her accent, but Saoirse Ronan has, to date, more often than not starred in “period piece” films like Brooklyn, On Chesil Beach, Mary Queen of Scots, Little Women, and Ammonite (heck, even Lady Bird was technically a period piece). That will soon change as Ronan is now signed, along with LaKeith Stanfield and Paul Mescal, to star in a sci-fi thriller called Foe for director Garth Davis (Lion, Certified Fresh at 84%). Ronan and Mescal will play a young rural married couple who find their lives upended when a stranger appears at their farm telling them that the husband is headed to a life aboard an orbiting space station.
(Photo by ©Paramount/courtesy Everett Collection)
It can sometimes take comedians decades to work their way up to fame (famous examples of this include Phyllis Diller, Larry David, and Ricky Gervais). This also happened to the late Bernie Mac, who didn’t star in The Original Kings of Comedy (Certified Fresh at 83%) until he was 42, and who died just eight years later at the age of 50 following years of struggling with sarcoidosis. This week, during a Tribeca Film Festival panel, John Legend’s producing partner revealed that Legend’s Get Lifted production company is now partnering with Bernie Mac’s estate to develop a biopic about his life. Legend and partner Mike Jackson did not reveal any details about who might be writing, directing, or starring in their Bernie Mac biopic.
(Photo by Warner Bros.)
Just two weeks ago, the news broke that Dwayne Johnson will be voicing the lead character of Krypto the Super-Dog in Warner Bros.’ animated DC League of Super-Pets (5/20/2022). This week, the studio revealed several more DC League of Super-Pets voice actors, although only Kevin Hart’s role as Batman’s sidekick Ace the Bat-Hound was specified. Other characters-yet-to-be-revealed will be voiced by Keanu Reeves, John Krasinski (A Quiet Place), Diego Luna (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), Natasha Lyonne (American Pie), and Saturday Night Live stars Vanessa Bayer and Kate McKinnon. In the comics, other members of the Legion of Super-Pets include Detective Chimp, Beppo the Super-Monkey, Comet the Super-Horse, and Streaky the Super-Cat, to give readers an idea of who else might show up. In related news, it now sounds like the Blue Beetle movie will now premiere exclusively on HBO Max. Director James Wan also revealed this week that his upcoming Aquaman sequel will be titled Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom (12/16/2022).
(Photo by MCA Television Entertainment courtesy Everett Collection)
Ever since The Addams Family (Fresh at 100%) and The Munsters (Fresh at 83%) both debuted as live-action TV shows within 8 days of each other (in September, 1964), the two spooky families have been intertwined in pop culture memory. It’s perhaps human nature to want to say one show is a copy of the other, but the evidence appears to suggest that the timing and similar concepts were mostly coincidental. With The Addams Family (Rotten at 45%) returning in 2019 as an animated feature, with a sequel coming out this October, it’s perhaps natural then that The Munsters also are getting revived as a feature film. This revival is in development at Universal Pictures, which is also an obvious studio home, as The Munsters characters are closely inspired by classic Universal monsters like Dracula (Grampa) and Frankenstein (Herman Munster). Rocker-turned-horror-director Rob Zombie (House of 1,000 Corpses, Halloween) took to Instagram to announce that he will be directing The Munsters, saying, “Attention Boils and Ghouls! The rumors are true! My next film project will be the one I’ve been chasing for 20 years! THE MUNSTERS!” (His post was also littered with skulls and bats, because, you know, horror.)