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ShowBuzz for 08/01

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Sony Eyeing Venom Spinoff 

Regardless of what you may have thought of Spider-Man 3, the film did introduce a wider audience to one of Spider-Man’s most fearsome foes…before unceremoniously killing him off during its climax. However, Sony Pictures, the studio behind the franchise, is seeking screenwriters for a forthcoming Venom spinoff film, according to The Hollywood Reporter (hollywoodreporter.com, 7/31).

The Venom film project is reportedly the result of a licensing deal between Marvel and Sony, which contained provisions allowing the film studio to develop spinoffs based on Spider-Man characters. 

A fourth Spider-Man film is slated for release in 2011.  

Footage Sheds New Light on Solo Wolverine Flick

At Comic-Con International in San Diego last weekend, fans were treated to an exclusive sneak peek of X-Men Origins: Wolverine, a prequel to Fox's  X-Men trilogy, movie website /film reports (slashfilm.com, 7/24).

Star Hugh Jackman was on hand to premiere never-before-seen clips from the anticipated film, which gave audiences a glimpse at some of the mutants that will be featured in the 2009 release. Deadpool, Blob, Gambit and Sabretooth will each appear in the film, which, according to /film, promises to be action packed.

“Out of the clips shown, there appears to be a lot going for and against this movie,” writes Adam Quigley of /film. “Towards the beginning of the footage, the cheese factor was through the roof, feeling more on par with [Brett] Ratner’s [X-Men: The Last Stand] than [Bryan] Singer’s [X-Men and X2: X-Men United]. Later on though, the mere presence of characters like Gambit and Deadpool immediately picked up the excitement factor several notches. What we got to see from the action sequences only furthered this excitement, confirming that even if the film doesn’t offer much in terms of emotional/dramatic tension or strong storytelling, it will at least amount to a whole lot of action-packed fun.”  

Watchmen Rules Comic-Con

In an interview with Time at San Diego’s Comic-Con International last weekend, Watchmen director Zack Snyder (300, Dawn of the Dead) admitted that he was never all that concerned about bringing the nihilistic nature of the Alan Moore graphic novel to the big screen (time.com, 7/26). 

“We never really thought, 'Oh, gosh, is the movie too dark? Are we gonna be plotting down this dark road so far that people slit their wrists and call it a day in the theater? You have these optimistic characters in the movie that are trying to muddle through. It is a reflection of us all,” he said. 

While anticipation for Watchmen was high on the convention floor—particularly when attendees were treated to exclusive footage of the film—Watchmen artist Dave Gibbons told Time that he was disappointed that Moore could not join in on the fun. The acclaimed writer takes no part in Hollywood adaptations of his work after a film version of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen bombed in 2003. “I see there is an elephant in the room,” said Gibbons. “I wish Alan could feel the same excitement and joy I’m feeling. I wish he hadn’t had such a bad experience in the past.”

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