By now you’ve probably heard that there is a legal battle brewing over who has the rights to “Watchmen.” This New York Times article (ironically entitled “Scene Stealer” – obviously they know I’m excited for it) features an accurate timeline of the project and goes over the repercussions of a ruling. Can a judge actually block the release of the film (which director Kevin Smith claims to have seen already!) until the whole mess is sorted out? It happened with that cinematic masterpiece “The Dukes of Hazzard.”
In an unprecedented move for a movie studio (who by their very nature seem to resist future distribution models), Warner Bros. is allowing 85 of their best catalog movies to be shown on iTunes. It’s all part of the studio’s 85th Anniversary special, and it means that for $2.99 you can “rent” a virtual copy of “Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure” or “The Shining” for that long airplane trip on your iPhone or iPod. Or, for $9.99, you get to keep a digital copy of “Casablanca” or “All the President’s Men” on your Apple device for as long as you want (or until that damn bettery runs out and your warranty is gone and you have to get yourself another, cooler, newer model of whatever the device has morphed into anyway – a toaster perhaps?). They have made available a pretty varied selection, including “Cool Hand Luke,” “Dog Day Afternoon,” Hitchcock classics like “Strangers on a Train,” and…wait for it… “fear dot com.”
Speaking of iPods, I’ve been watching director Baz Luhrman’s (extremely well produced)production diaires on iTunes for free for a couple of months now. Even though they pretty much amount to nothing more than basic DVD extra-type behind-the-scenes shorts, it’s fun to look at the sets and massive scope of the “Moulin Rouge” filmmaker’s newest project “Australia,” starring Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman. The news today is that the feature has been pushed back to Nov. 26 to give Luhrmann more time to complete the movie. He’s reportedly shooting pick-up scenes with the stars now. However long it takes is cool with me, as long as the director is happy with the final cut.
Briefly: Christopher Nolan has yet to sign on to another Batman movie … Bryan Singer is still in for another Superman film, but only with a seriously more badass villain (I liked “Returns;” this is why) … oh goody! Another “Halloween” remake/reboot/rehash, this time without Rob Zombie … Screenwriter Roberto Orci has answered some fan-submitted questions about the upcoming “Transformers” sequel … Wanna see an Oscar-nominated doc on YouTube for free in its entirely? I thought you might. Starting next week: see “No End in Sight,” a probing, insider’s look what make sup a colossal failure … “The Muppet Show” is coming back to TV after 27 years off? … A trailer for “Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Animated Series”, featuring voices of the Joss Whedon TV show’s cast mysteriously popped up online, even though the show probably will never see the light of day. Watch it below: