Weekly Round Up: Downton Abbey, ACME, Dhaka

Downton Abbey

Shhhh. Everyone keep it down, because Paramount have announced that the sequel to this years box-office smash, A Quiet Place, directed by John Karsinski and starring Krasinshi and Emily Blunt as a husband and wife who must protect their family in a post-apocalyptic world overrun by monsters who are attracted to the slightest sound, is officially in works.

Inventively titled A Quiet Place 2, sequel is set for a May 15, 2020 release date, seeing the film going up against Warner Bros. Godzilla Vs Kong (which is out the week before and I’m really excited for. Hey! Both Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island were good movies, fight me!), which is released the week before, and their Scooby Doo reboot, titled Scooby (yay?).

The studio has also, perhaps somewhat surprisingly given the buzz around this one (apparently people still have figured out that sequels to films nobody wanted from well over a decade ago aren’t that great an idea), bumped Top Gun sequel, Top Gun: Maverick, back to a 2020 release. 

Apparently this is to do with the film’s “complex flight sequences” needing more time to be produced, but if you ask me (and I don’t really know anything so I don’t know why you are), it’s more likely because the film is a bad idea and they’re just not sure how they can get the whole thing to work.

Speaking of movies based on popular past media that no one really wanted (and yes, I like Top Gun as much as the next one but are we really in need of sequel here?), the Downton Abbey movie has added a whole roster of new people to its cast. Perhaps this most recognisable is Imelda Staunton, who most people will know as the evil Dolores Umbridge in some franchise called Harry Potter (never heard of it personally, sounds like the story of a put-upon builder just trying to do right by his estranged family), but joining Staunton is Simon Jones, David Haig, Geraldine James, Stephen Campbell Moore and Kate Phillips.

In Star Wars news this week we learned that the J J Abrams directed Episode IX has added none other than the Doctor himself, Matt Smith to the cast, who will be playing a “key role”, whatever that means. Chances are it’ll be something totally unrelated that never really gets explained, but everyone will just go along with it because, hey, at least it’s just exactly like all the other Star Wars movies and not trying to do anything new.

Joining Smith will be Dominic Monaghan, who worked with J J Abrams before on the TV show Lost. If Abrams’ work on Lost proved anything it’s that he’s definitely the guy you wanted tying up all the loose and to your franchise…

Chris Hemsworth, God of Thunder, has signed on to star in a Netflix produced production called Dhaka, an action thriller written and directed by Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War directors Joe and Anthony Russo. The Russo Brothers are also production the film, which will be directed by Sam Hargarve, who was the stun co-ordinator acting as Hemsworth’s stunt double on the MCU films. This makes Dhaka a kind of mini-MCU reunion, I suppose. Which is nice. Isn’t it nice? I’m glad they all get along.

Meanwhile, everyone’s favourite Baldwin, Alec Baldwin, announced his involvement in Warner Bros. and DC’s upcoming standalone Joker movie. Baldwin will be playing Thomas Wayne, leading many to speculate that Bruce Wayne and the Joker may very well turn out to be brothers in the movie (which is an absolutely awful idea! Don’t do that!).

Baldwin then announced that actually he’s not in the movie, citing scheduling issues. So, we’re not sure what’s happening with this one anymore. Apparently the role has now been offered to Viggo Mortenson.

Is it just me, or are all of these standalone DC movies starting to get a little confusing now? I don’t even know which one they’re talking about. Is the DCEU still a thing? Can someone answer these questions please? None of it seems to make a lick of sense anymore. I’m pleading with you! Please! I don’t understand! My brain hurts.

While we’re on the subject of Batman, the director of the (surprisingly good) The LEGO Batman movie, Chris McKay, has announced that he’ll be producing a movie based on the fictional company Acme Corportation, as seen in the Looney Tunes cartoons.

As a fan of the Looney Tunes I’m always down for more cartoonish hijinks, and the last time we got a feature length Looney Tunes film it was 14 years ago with Looney Tunes: Back in Action. This new film is titled Coyote vs Acme, which seems to suggest the film will centre upon Wile E. Coyote from the Roadrunner shorts. And, as if that didn’t already sound intriguing enough, the film will be written by Jon and Josh Silberman, who are known for their work on It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia. So, awesome. I’m down.

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Alex Secker is a writer/director/editor. His debut feature film, the micro-budget thriller Follow the Crows, won Best Independent Film at the Global Film Festival Awards, while his stage-play, The Door, won the People’s Choice Award at the 2017 Swinge Festival.


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