Hollywood – With the launch of the JJ Abrams Project Management Course online, the blockbuster director tells us his secrets on how to plan mega-budget franchises like Star Wars.
JJ, how do you plan such a large project like Star Wars?
First of all, I ask myself, ‘What would Spielberg do?’ and then I just splurge it all out on the page in a big ol’ treatment. Don’t forget the lens flare. Then once the first draft of the first film is done it’s time to spend some major fucking studio money baby. Get the green screens up and let cameras roll.
So you just write a draft of the first film. What about planning all of the films in the franchise?
Why would I want to do that? Who gives a shit. It’s fucking Star Wars. I could film a dog taking a dump for two and a half hours. As long as I super impose a light saber in his little paw, it would still make $700million. I guarantee it.
So you never planned anything beyond The Force Awakens?
Neeeerd! Nah. Who’s got the time to fuck about with all that?
Is that what you recommend in the modules of your course?
Modules? Plural? There’s only one, man. Who can be bothered with writing more than one module? I got billions from what I made on Star Wars and Star Trek. And all that money won’t spend itself. Know what I mean?
Well, what about the art of storytelling, artistic integrity and appreciation for the craft?
Hahahahahahah, you’re a funny fucking guy. I should put you in my next movie as the comic relief. You’ll be much cheaper than that smart ass Brit, Simon Pegg. Look, it don’t matter what you plan. As long your name is pinned on the right franchise, nobody gives a shit.
But what about Kevin Feige at Marvel? He’s a meticulous planner.
That’s all well and good for those little Marvel B-movies where budgets are tight. That aint my jam. Ya dig?
The JJ Abrams Project Management School is now available online for a small fortune.
HOLLYWOOD – Justice League director Zack Snyder to take over Marvel Universe.
Following his success at releasing Zack Snyder‘s Justice League, the 300 director Zack Snyder is due to take over the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Kevin Feige today announced that he would step down from his position overseeing the MCU:
I know when I’m beat. I’ve watched what Zack has achieved over at DC and I know he’s the man to reverse our fortunes.
Although Zack won’t be the first director to move between the two universes – James Gunn went in the other direction – he will eb the most high profile director to have done so. In many ways, Snyder is as much the face of DC as Feige has represented for Marvel. However, the Snydster – as he insists on us calling him – seemed blithely dismissive of any objections.
Fans, you know, fuck ’em! The way I see it is that there aren’t any universes. There’s just one universe the Snyderverse. That’s what I’ll concentrate all my efforts to bring into existence. I mean let’s face it: there are so many things I can do. The DC Universe is kind of done. I don’t want to say I perfect it, but I kinda did. What else can I do? I mean, realistically?
With that Zack turned and walked away in slow motion as a thousand crows fell to his feet.
Batman Vs Superman Vs Spiderman starts filming in May.
HOLLYWOOD – Marvel big boss Kevin Feige revealed that Avengers 4 will kill off the entire cast.
Speaking EXCLUSIVELY with the Studio Exec, Marvel president Kevin Feige promised that the next Avengers film – Avengers 4 – will be a character blood bath.
First, we’ve looked at all the superhero films around and we’ve seen that audiences are getting tired of this stuff. There’s a point that comes where they want some kind of closure. So, for the next Avengers movie we’ve decided on a radical solution. A kind of WTF finale. Where everyone dies! Do you get it?
I know. I first got the idea from watching Game of Thrones. You see those guys came up with a brilliant idea. You have established characters everyone knows and loves and they seem to be on a journey. And then BHAM! They’re dead. Or squish, in the case of the guy who got his head caved in.
That’s the guy.
So you’re going to kill them all off?
Iron Man, Captain America, the Hulk Thor.
The Black Widow?
Oh yeah. Definitely.
Aren’t you worried that telling us this will spoil the movie?
Telling everybody? I’m only telling you SE. Hey, you’re not going to tell anyone are you?
Good. You got anymore shrimp. These are delicious.
Avengers 4 will be released in 2018.
HOLLYWOOD – As more stories pour in from the Sony email hack it appears that the studio is looking to dispense of the services of Andrew Garfield and replace him with another actor.
Producer Scott Rudin and Marvel President Kevin Feige have exchanged a number of messages on the subject:
We want Spider-Man back. What do you think the asking price will be?
We want an older Spider-Man. Audiences love that stuff so we’re thinking about Jon Hamm. It’s not official as yet but he’s been approached.
I had a word. They said 500 million but that piss ant Garfield is contracted for another so he’ll have to be paid off if you want rid.
You mean the guy from Mad Men? That’s a bold choice. I hear he’s into some wacky sex stuff. You better check that out before he signs.
I looked into Hamm. He’s into sandpaper tubes and soldering irons, nothing heavy and nobody is pressing any charges. We did find this picture though. Can you get one of your guys to confirm if it’s real or not?
Yep. It’s real. Apparently those sofas were made by a Mexican company that went out of business in 1997 but you can pick one up on ebay for around $300.
HOLLYWOOD – Former Apple chief and certified genius Steve Jobs will have role in Marvel’s Avengers Age of Ultron, Idris Elba revealed today.
Speaking EXCLUSIVELY to the Studio Exec, Elba confided:
I can’t say too much because I’m already in hot water with Joss Whedon and Kevin Feige for shooting my mouth off. However, if you promise not to tell anyone I can tell you about the surprise star of the film, Steve Jobs.
Yeah. Steve has been taken up by Ultron (James Spader) and his death faked and he’s been helping Ultron and his plans for world and indeed inter-galactic domination.
Who plays Jobs?
What do you mean who plays Jobs? Jobs. It’s Steve Jobs. The actual guy.
I don’t understand.
Just the same way Ultron faked Steve’s death, so Kevin Feige and the cats at Marvel did the exact same thing for the real Jobs and now he’s paying them back by appearing in the latest Avengers. This will be the best resurrection since Jesus or at least Bobby Ewing.
I know. But Marvel is now an all powerful organisation.
So Jobs is like an evil henchman?
At the beginning yes. He’s like the brainy guy, but what he really does is take all of Ultron’s original ideas and spins them from a design point of view and then takes all the credit. Like in the trailer when Ultron says ‘No strings on me’, Steve gives him that line. He is a branding genius.
How does Steve feel about Christian Bale pulling out of the Aaron Sorkin scripted biopic?
That was all Steve’s doing. You see he has always wanted to play himself in the film, so he would appear at Christian’s bedside every night growling and cursing until Bale gave in. Now Steve will appear, but for the sake of secrecy they’ll say it’s Daniel Day Lewis or Michael Fassbender. Steve’s psyched about the movie because he loves Seth Rogen.
Avengers Age of Ultron will be released in 2015.
HOLLYWOOD – British film director Edgar Wright has revealed for the first time the real reason he left the Marvel project Ant-Man: his commitment to practical effects.
Speaking exclusively to the Studio Exec, the Sean of the Dead director spoke for the first time of his differences with Marvel producer Kevin Feige:
[quote]Marvel has become a very well oiled machine. You have to remember I was working on the Ant-Man script long before Iron Man and The Avengers had come out. Before Thor and Captain America too. So Marvel were very open to the direction I was taking, which was going to rely on practical effects exclusively. I hate CGI and would never use it in a film of mine. Of course that meant I had to construct huge sets and film Paul Rudd from a distance with a long lens so that he’d look small. I also had him on a diet and made him sleep in this contraption, kind of the opposite of those medieval torture machines, you know the rack, the opposite of that. [/quote]
Yeah, instead of stretching him, it would crush him into a smaller version of Paul Rudd. If you watch Prince Avalanche you’ll actually see his size shifts as the film progresses. Worse than Kate Winslett in Titanic. Ha ha. Well, he complained a little and Marvel began to talk about using CGI. I said no and our arguments got progressively more heated. I suppose the straw that broke the camel’s back was when I fired Rudd.
You fired Paul Rudd?
Yeah. I wasn’t satisfied with his performance. I thought instead of having a man with the powers of an ant, I could more easily train an ant to act convincingly as a man. And for once my option would have been cheaper. But we, me and Marvel, disagreed. It became obvious that Marvel wanted Ant-MAN, whereas I was making ANT-man. So in the end we had two incompatible visions, but there should be no hard feelings. I wish them luck. Although I wish they hadn’t replaced me with that hack Haneke.
Michael Haneke’s Ant-Man will be released in 2015.
HOLLYWOOD – Following the successes of Captain America: Winter Soldier and The Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel revealed yesterday that Phase 3 of the plan to take over the Movie universe will lack one ingredient most audiences would have thought essential: superheroes.
Continue reading “KEVIN FEIGE ON MARVEL PHASE 3: ‘NO SUPERHEROES’”
HOLLYWOOD – In a shock move that has brought cries of almost physical pain from the geek-i-verse, Marvel Studios have said that once they’ve released Thor: the Dark World ‘that’s your lot’.
The sequels to The Avengers, Hulk and Captain America have already halted pre-production, or production and the film that had already been shot has been deleted and/or burnt.
Kevin Feige explaining Marvel’s decision tried to put a positive spin on it:
The fact is we’re kind of grown up adult men and we were walking around the production offices looking at all these drawings of people in costumes and all these scripts of inflated power fantasies, and we just thought Jesus Christ, I think it’s time we all grew up.
News comes only seconds after Disney said that they were abandoning plans to release any Star Wars pictures ‘because – really? – does the world need another Star Wars product? Really? I mean, are you shitting me.’
A psychiatrist who works seven days a week in the film industry, Dr. Habberon Stykes has argued that a problem of ‘franchise fatigue’ is striking down executives and producers at the highest level of the production process:
What we have is these often very intelligent men and women – who am I kidding? – men. Anyway. They get to be in their forties and they look back and they just see all they’ve been doing for their adult lives is exactly what they were doing as children, but much more expensively.
So what are the plans for Marvel Studios now? Kevin Feige said, ‘We’re currently working on a series of documentaries that are going to go into the corrosion of worker’s rights in America. We want to bring this out at Christmas where we’ll be going head to head with Disney’s new film The Syrian Civil War: Why You Should Care?‘