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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Disney Announces Upcoming Films, Tron, Prince of Persia, and the Lone Ranger Starring Johnny Depp

Posted by Jenna Busch on 09/25 at 08:27 AM

Mickey Mouse

Just got back from “Disney Day” at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood where we got a preview of the upcoming films for the next thousand years or so.  It was quite the production, actually.  Miley Cyrus sang and read off a teleprompter, Robin Williams made fun of the teleprompter, Tim Allen told William H. Macy that he had a large package and we saw the footage from the new Tron film...Tr2n!!!  (I’m clapping my hands and squealing like a 12 year old girl right now...so glad you can’t see that)

Read on for the wrap-up

So here’s what we learned:

George Lopez needs glasses.  He popped onstage for a second (after an actual Chihuahua) and had trouble reading the teleprompter to promote his new film, Beverly Hills Chihuahua.  I believe he called it the best movie ever.  Yeah.

High School Musical 3 is coming out and we saw the trailer.  These are very, very peppy high school students but when they brought the stars out on stage, they didn’t let them speak.  Perhaps they were afraid someone else has a sex tape.

We were shown the trailer for the newest Adam Sandler vehicle, Bedtime Stories in which the stories he’s telling his sister’s kids start coming true.  It actually looks funny.  Well, not as funny as the semi-faux-hawk that Sandler is sporting, but still, I like the idea of gumballs raining from the sky and Russell Brand dressed in a gladiator outfit.  And one of our favorite cylons is in this:  Lucy “don’t ask me why one of the cylons has an Australian accent...I couldn’t pull off American in Zena: Warrior Princess” Lawless. 

Dwayne Johnson came out to promote his new film, Race to Witch Mountain and show us the brand new trailer.  If you don’t remember the other films, it’s about a couple of alien children that need to get to witch mountain to save their world and ours.  The effects looked pretty cool and the film seems more adult than the previous ones.  The alien girl had an egg looking thing that was sort of a GPS unit.  I wonder if hers has an annoying chick’s voice on it too.  There was a car chase, a UFO and a few good explosions.  You know how I love those.  Did you know the director was born in Roswell?

And the comic relief for the day.  Robin Williams and John Travolta (and his gut) came on to talk about Old Dogs also starring Seth Green.  Williams and Travolta are rich business partners living the high life when Williams finds out he has kids.  Kelly Preston (Travolta’s real-life wife) and Travolta’s daughter play the wife and daughter of Williams.  Don’t try to follow that.  Just think about the large number of shots to the crotch that I saw poor Seth Green endure.  He’s also cradled by a gorilla.  Don’t ask.  I’ll see it for that alone.

Disney (along with all the other studios) are pushing their 3D offerings.  Personally, I doubt it’s the future of film.  Feel free to disagree and leave me your opinions, ok?  I’m open to discussion on this.  Anyway, their first offering is Hannah Montana in 3D.  Miley Cyrus came out to perform.  I’m more of a heavy metal chick myself, but the kid has talent.  I don’t know why they scripted her whole conversation before the clip.  They’re also doing both the Toy Story films.  And Toy Story 3 is coming out in 3D as well.  Andy’s going away to college.  Sniff.

Next we have Up, a 3D adventure with an old man and a boyscout who travel in a house attached to a pile of helium balloons.  I’m quite sure the Mythbusters have already tackled that.

The Princess and the Frog is a return to 2D, hand drawn animations for all of you who are sick of the CG animation we’ve all been subjected to.  Set in New Orleans and starring Anika Noni Rose from Dreamgirls and Oprah. 

Cars 2, in 3D of course, was next on the list, slated for summer 2011.  That’s a year ahead of what Disney had previously stated.  In the meantime, they’re releasing a series of short cartoons called “cars-toons”.  Yeah, I know.  Groan.  They showed us the first one starring “Mader” and it was pretty cute.  They’ll be running on the Disney channel. 

Then we watched the upcoming animated 3D film Bolt, and though the review is embargoed for now, I’ll just say that it made me go home and hug my dog.  I left the room with a bit of a headache from the 3D glasses though.

After lunch, we took a tour through an exhibit on Robert Zemekis’s upcoming “performance capture” film A Christmas Carol (think Beowulf) where we saw what looked like oil paintings of the film’s sets and scenes, and the stars.  Rubber-faced Jim Carrey stars as, well, a few versions of Scrooge, all the ghosts and the kitchen sink...sorry.  Robin Wright Penn is Bell and Gary Oldman as Fezziwig.  The face changes in each character were unnerving.  Should be pretty interesting.  We saw models of each set and one had a tiny camera we could move around inside to see what they did.  I wish I could have taken picture for you, but the guards kept giving me the skunk-eye.  Zemekis came out on stage and when asked why he decided to do yet another version of this story, he explained that he believes this is “the greatest time travel story ever”.  Jim Carrey came out and, after joking that he will have to be paid for each of the seven characters and how he was making the studio a billion dollars (it sounded less obnoxious in person), he told us that he doesn’t get too confused switching roles.  Pointing at his melon, he said, “There’s a lot going on up here anyway.  It’s a party and everyone’s invited.”

It was announced that Tim Burton will be doing a version of Alice in Wonderland and we saw some really cool concept art.  As we announced in an earlier post, Johnny Depp will be playing The Mad Hatter.  I’m assuming that means Helena Bonham Carter will be the Queen of Hearts, since the two of them seem incapable of doing a Burton film alone.

On the Touchstone side, we have The Proposal starring Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds.  Sandra is a Canadian businesswoman in the US who must marry to avoid being deported and losing her job.  Of course, she hates the guy.  If you’ve read any of my posts, you know I’m not a fam of rom-coms, but they’re two very funny pretty people so it might not be too bad.  It pulled Bullock out of rom-com retirement, right?  Bullock also mentioned that the special effects guys were doing something to make her look good in her nude scenes.  Cause she needs help?

Surrogates starring Bruce Willis, looks pretty damn cool.  A la Second Life, we have avatars, but in the future, they’re robots.  You can be whoever you want and do whatever you please, feel what they feel and see what they see.  If your avatar gets whacked, you get another, while you sit in a chair and live through them.  But when people start dying in the chair, Mr. Moonlighting has to go solve the crime.

The newly created Disneynature will put out Earth, a very pretty film following a family of whales, polar bears and elephants.  Imagine the cuteness.  On the not-quite-as-cute side, we have Wild Dogs 2.  Yes, John Travolta, Tim Allen, William H. Macy and Martin Lawrence are back on the hogs.  And Tim Allen told us that William H. Macy is hung like a horse.  Mazel Tov.

Helen Mirren, she of The Queen fame will be playing an Israeli operative in The Dead for Miramax and Amy Adams, Meryl Streep and Philip Seymour Hoffman will star in a film that seemed reminiscent of Oleanna to me called Doubt.  A priest is accused of sexual abuse by a nun who may or may not be lying to get back at him for his reforms in a Catholic school.  I believe this is their Oscar bait film for the year.

Nicolas Cage came out to announce National Treasure 3, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, and G-Force in which he voices a genetically altered guinea pig.  I’ll just give you a moment to let that sink in.  Guinea pig.  I got nothin’.

We saw a few clips of Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time.  (During my trip to London for Quantum of Solace, I saw a glimpse of a few sets at Pinewood studios.  Check back for my coverage.) It looked really cool!  Not sure how I feel about Jake Gyllanhall playing the lead, but I’ll reserve judgement.  I’ve never been impressed by video game ports.  They always disappoint me, but here’s hoping!

I won’t torture you with Confessions of a Shopaholic.  Nor will I torture myself by seeing it.  We did, however, see the trailer for Tron and it looked amazing!  It was the same footage shown at Comic Con in San Diego, but damn I’m excited for this one.  Anyone else?  Oh, and it’s in 3D!  Now this one would be cool with an extra dimension!

And, whew, last but not least, as I mentioned in an earlier post, the prolific Johnny Depp will star in Bruckheimer’s The Lone Ranger.  And now the theme song is in my head.  Damn it! 

What are you excited for?  What are you dreading the commercials for?  Let us know!

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