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Flying Exactly As Bricks Don't...


Brendan Fraser and Matthew Bomer are out. And so is director Brett Ratner, who announced yesterday that rather than renew his option to direct Superman (which, a while ago, was a life-long dream), he would be starting pre-production work on...

Rush Hour 3.

What kind of a world is it when we can get another Rush Hour film before we can get a decent Superman?

Kal-El, my son...
Actually, like the loss of Josh Hartnett for the role, this could be a blessing in disguise. As a director, Ratner has proven himself to be a competent face in the crowd, nothing more. But as the successful Marvel films have proven, audiences respond to superhero films driven by men with vision, not just the ability to shoot a cool video.

Right now, the entire project is up in the air. The only consistent player remains producer Jon Peters, the one guy every fan would like to see quietly walk away. At various times in the troubled project's history, he has insisted on a costume with no cape, no actual flying in the film ("it's been done"), Nicolas Cage, polar bears guarding the Fortress of Solitude, shaolin monks using super kung-fu, and Don Knotts as Jor-El. I'm only kidding about one of those.

Say, original Superman director Richard Donner is still around, why not use him? Wait, that's right, he's too busy producing the X-Men franchise...


Perhaps the most disturbing casting rumor (emphasis on rumor) flying around this week involves our favorite wall-crawler.

Allegedly, Tobey Maguire has injured his back from riding too hard in his role as a jockey in Seabiscuit. Save the snickering. Though his people have said that he will recover in time for the April 15 start date of Amazing Spider-Man, someone has flown the story that Sony is talking replacement.

Who would don the ridged spandex of Spider-Man?

Brooding, intense, and just a little bit disturbing...
If Maguire and Rob Schneider had a love-child, Jake Gyllenhaal would be the man. The Spider-Man.

He has a similar laidback delivery to Maguire, and he has a nice edge, as anyone who saw Donnie Darko (recommended) will attest. However, Gyllenhaal also has a creepiness to him that Maguire does not, which could translate into a Peter Parker who is scarier than his costumed identity.

Again, it's all conjecture at this point. We can't stress this enough. But it is flying around the internet with more force than Halle Berry telling Bryan Singer to kiss her black ass. Keep those grains of salt handy.

The Punisher

Just a small follow-up on a rumor: Artisan Entertainment officially green-lighted The Punisher last month, in the hands of writer/director Jonathan Hensleigh. Though they have not made an official announcement as to who will play Frank Castle, actor Thomas Jane claims it's him.

If you want to check out how suitable he is for the role, Jane has one of the leads in Dreamcatcher, where yes, he handles weaponry with grim-faced determination.

Derek McCaw

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