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 12:00 AM, 30-JUNE-08
 
Bender's Game Just A Pun

Futurama executive producer David X. Cohen told SCI FI Wire that the next DVD movie will be called Bender's Game--and Cohen admitted that he'd long wanted to use that title, a pun on Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card.

"We had an index card up on the wall for years," Cohen said in an interview while promoting The Beast With a Billion Backs. "Ender's Game is a classic sci-fi novel and probably one of my favorite sci-fi novels. So we've always wanted to use the title Bender's Game, but we never had the right episode before."

Despite the title, the third of four DVD movies is not a parody of Card's book, Cohen said. It "has very, very little to do with that subject matter, [but] it does involve Bender [John Di Maggio] and a game," he said. "So we thought, 'OK, it's now or never to use that title.' And we pounced on it."

Bender's Game is the Futurama team's first full-scale foray into the world of fantasy. It's an alternate-universe adventure, with Bender, Fry (Billy West) and the gang trying to determine why dark matter, which serves as fuel for starships in the 30th century, costs so damn much.

"We were all kind of shocked, when we started talking about the idea, that we hadn't done it before, really," Cohen said. "It almost seems obvious that it's something our fans would like. It has the overlap with SF while being something a little bit different. So we were very excited, because we felt like we'd just hit a treasure trove of material that we had not explored before."

The movie takes place in a "land of magic and dragons," Cohen said. "You'll get to see the fantasy versions of all of our characters. Visually, it's going to be very spectacular, I think." Beast With a Billion Backs is out now, and Bender's Game will be released later this year. --Ian Spelling
 


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To promote its upcoming fall J.J. Abrams SF series Fringe, Fox is running a campaign of stealth ads with the theme "Find the pattern" on radio and the Internet at such sites as Automobile.com and FamilyOven.com, with ads encouraging users to "Imagine the Impossibilities," according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Perth, late actor Heath Ledger's Australian hometown, named a theater in his honor July 1 for his commitment to acting, the Associated Press reported; the $87 million, 575-seat Heath Ledger Theater was named in honor of the actor who will next be seen as the Joker in The Dark Knight, opening July 18.

Will Smith's superhero movie Hancock will open an evening early, with most of the 3,965 theaters that have booked the film starting screenings at 7 p.m. on July 1, according to The Hollywood Reporter.


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Source: Amazon.com, 6/27/08