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June 02 2005

More speculations on X3 director. According to Moriarty at AICN, Joss is not really to be considered as the (next) X3 director.

"As our TalkBackers were happy to point out, Joss has said that unless he was writing the film, he wouldn’t be interested in stepping in, and I get that".

Many of us also noticed that fact, two days ago, when we learned that Vaughn was departing.

PS: I edited to change the category (from "cast&crew" to "Xmen"). Sorry, I'm a little newbie to this... this was my first story ;) .

I agree, I also don't think that it's an option.

Joss makes shiny bright new things and this project is 9 weeks (?) away from filming. It makes little sense, unless he wants to rewrite the script etc....which is really a no-go.

Joss should stick with the full and interesting list that he has a the moment and buff them up to perfection.

Interesting to see who might replace Vaughn though, I also hope the final product doesn't turn out to be a mess because of the reshuffles.
The more I hear about the X-men movie, the more I worry about it.

I mean, really. Brett Ratner? The guy who made Rush Hour?? Okaaaay. :/
In fact, whoever is the next director, I really can't understand how he'll manage to make the X3 he wants.

9 weeks from filming... the script is being revised (so the next director will have very few inputs in this script), the cast has been chosen (I doubt the next director will be allowed to make major changes), the pre-production - choosing the locations, etc... - must also be well advanced (so, here to, the director will not have his word), etc etc...

In my opinion, this director will be a puppet of the productors. This is not a chair I would like Joss to sit in!
"Three major characters that absolutely should not die, die. Really dead, too."

I bet they kill off Magneto.
bret ratner---------all together now
I'm kinda glad Bryan Singer is not heading the third picture. The first two films were a judicious compromise between the zany source material and what Hollywood formulae calculates as success. The two films together are a great coaster ride, and they were kind to the source material, but so many little things dramatically steer away from the source material that it makes it difficult to tell future stories without further losing focus.

It's like what they've done with Spider-Man. By introducing Mary Jane first, the entire storyline between Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy has been erased. Some would argue, perhaps successfully, that this is a good thing. Gwen Stacy was little more than a plot element in the comic books anyway, and less racy or provacative than MJ. However, as we approach the third film of that franchise, there's rumors that Kirsten Dunst plans for this to be her last Spider-Man film, which means they'd kill off MJ. To attempt to steer back towards the source material, she'd be killed off by The Goblin (which one?) and become the film franchise's Gwen Stacy. Then they'd bring in a new girl, call her Gwen, and she'd pose as the equivalent of the comic book's MJ. How this isn't going to become confusing by the sixth or seventh film is anyone's guess.

Unless X3 is about the Phoenix Saga, I won't expect much from it, and if it does turn out to be about Phoenix, I'll probably expect too much. If Whedon took the third film over, I imagine he'd disregard the first two films and try to bring the franchise closer to its source material. I haven't personally seen his own comic book work in this area, but I've read great things about it. He'd do the source material justice but he might not do the movie franchise justice, and the moneybags behind the films would not approve. So to put it bluntly, Whedon won't ever get an X-Men movie. The variables required to put him in the director's chair simply don't exist. He's got Wonder Woman though. If he pulls a rabbit out of that hat, the variables may change for X-Men 4. By then however, the film franchise could be so far removed from the source material that Whedon won't want to touch it anyway. Whedon has a chance at starting a film franchise off right. He's there at the beginning. If given the choice of starting from scratch or cleaning up someone else's mess, which would you choose?
Hated how Bryan Singer used and wrote his women. They were always more show pieces or after thoughts to the action. Both Rogue and Jean Grey were horribly dissected and made either cold or quite childish.
"Unless X3 is about the Phoenix Saga, I won't expect much from it" I personally think its going to be about the mutant massacre. The new info in this article leads me to believe more so.

And yeah I agree that they should've brought in Gwen Stacy first. Hell, Kristen Dunst is a blonde. Why didn't they cast her as Gwen? She was miscast as MJ.
ZM - some great points. I've been reading Joss' run on 'Astonishing' and I've seen an X-Men I've not seen since back before the first 'Age of Apocalypse' stuff. Good stuff and well worth checking out. I can only sit here rolling my eyes at the MJ/Gwen Switcheroo that almost has to happen now. Your points on the little things being a constant pull off track to the point where its nigh impossible to come back are well taken also. Such is Hollyweird.

edited because apparently I can't type.

[ edited by zeitgeist on 2005-06-02 15:01 ]
Surprised to hear Rush Hour bashing. That was one funny movie. I mean, damn funny. But maybe I thought so because I lived in Asia and had seen less than five films in a theater in two years when I saw it, and had been to Hong Kong and could figure out why Jackie Chan is an international movie star. Jeez... In addition, any movie that gets my dad laughing has merit in my book.
But the movie was funny because of Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker. Not the director. I heard "After The Sunset" was pretty crap.
April: yes, of course, but we're talking X3 here.

A X3 movie build as a Rush Hour movie, that makes the audience laugh and smile throughout the screening, would be a very bad XMen movie!

On the other hand, maby we should not only focus on Rush Hour. Ratner has also directed Red Dragon (which I have not seen yet, but I know it is quite different from Rush Hour ;) ).
They could do a whole lot worse than Ratner.

But really, how many Whedonesque posts are we going to get about X3 not being Whedon?
After the Sunset was ah, not so good. Not if you adored the first one. Was Red Dragon based on the novel? Because the original Red Dragon movie a long time ago was interesting, and I'm thinking the re-make was much better. Anthony Hopkins and all that.

But really, how many Whedonesque posts are we going to get about X3 not being Whedon?

As much as posts about X4 that might be Joss'. ;)

More seriously, I think it is interesting to notice that, though Joss has no experience (at least, none which has been released yet) as director on the big screen, there nevertheless is a big buzz (as it seems) on his name as a project leader. People think about him as a "great name" although he has not yet proved himself as a director.

To me, it seems quite exceptionnal.
eddy wrote:
And yeah I agree that they should've brought in Gwen Stacy first. Hell, Kristen Dunst is a blonde. Why didn't they cast her as Gwen? She was miscast as MJ.

i'd attibute that to the fact that they'de be trying to present a spiderman that is familiar to as broad an audience as possible and i think that more people are aware of mj than gwen hence she's the one we got.
The funny part about the switching between MJ and Gwen, is that Kirsten Dunst is actually a Blonde, it does take things to some perspective.

One of the worst facets of the the first two X-Men movies, were the characterization of women characters. Mystique only got some real spunk in the second movie, where Lady Deathstrike was just a mute killing machine. Jean, Ororo and Rogue who are all supposed to be some of the strongest women in Marvelverse, and relegated to some smaller parts. Can't really blame Halle Berry for complaining, that Storm wasn't being properly used and not wanting to come back for the sequels. Over using Wolverine was always expected, but they were doing a enssemle team movie not a character profile on Wolverine, which they seemed to be doing a lot of time.

A Joss script, would've probably resulted, at least a fairer portrayal of the women in the movie, with some really relevant roles, instead of just being a script accessories.
Agreed EvilTobz. MJ is the more recent of Parker's love interests. Gwen Stacy was about a generation ago in the source material. In the books, Gwen was the girl next door and MJ didn't show up until much later. Perhaps the writers of the movie purposefully combined the two and have no plans of bringing in Gwen Stacy at all. I have to disagree about Dunst being miscast. If the producers' purpose was to combine MJ and Gwen, Dunst was the obvious choice. She's got both the girl next door look as well as a bit of a wild streak in her eyes, so she encompasses both characters.

Admittedly, the source material doesn't give a lot to go on with Gwen Stacy. She's little more than a stereotype. A damsel in distress or the token girlfriend who gets upset whenever Parker misses a meeting because he was being Spider-Man. Most fans of the series remember her for little more than being the girlfriend who got killed, causing Parker to be even more depressed and guilt-ridden. When Marvel gave fans a chance to choose either Gwen or Mary Jane, the audience almost unanimously chose to keep MJ, so Gwen was written out of the series. IF they write MJ out of the films, they'll have to consider bringing in a new female love interest. Perhaps they'll bring the Black Cat into the picture and ignore Gwen entirely. They could also opt to bring Dunst back AS Gwen after they kill off MJ, just let her be blonde and give her glasses or something. Who knows? When they made Superman 3, they wrote out Lois Lane and introduced Lana Lang, thus introducing the love interests backwards, but it was ineffective. Who knows what they'll do. As ZeitGeist pointed out, it's HollyWEIRD we're talking about.

What I wish someone would do is take DC's Firestorm character and let Joss Whedon direct, then cast Anthony Stewart Head as Professor Martin Stein, Nicholas Brendan as Ronnie Raymond, and Mercedes McNabb as Killer Frost, but then Brendan may now be too old to play college student Raymond. Brendan's got the comic timing though and his face is ideal for the look of the character. I was always partial to FlameBrain. Even with today's digital technology, I don't know if it's possible to do Firestorm justice. In Whedon's hands though, you couldn't miss.
Hated how Bryan Singer used and wrote his women. They were always more show pieces or after thoughts to the action. Both Rogue and Jean Grey were horribly dissected and made either cold or quite childish.

Especially Rogue. From the feisty, powerful Faith-like southern gal to a little crying child who has to be rescued the whole time. Not quite what I'd hoped...

I do like how Moriarty is saying that Joss writing the actual X-Men comics now is probably doing more for him to get the X-bug out of his system than directing a movie in an existing franchise that he'd have to stick to. Love the line of 'doing the movie would be taking a step back for him now', hehe. And I can totally see what he means.

As for Spiderman, just because Kirsten Dunst is leaving doesn't mean that it's certain they're going to kill Mary Jane. Like she did in the comics, she could just leave. (Or be recast as they do all the time in franchises) And it also doesn't mean they automatically 'have' to introduce Gwen then. There's plenty of other romantic interests to choose from. One of them being Felicia Hardy who (as is rumored) might be played by Eliza Dushku in III.

i think that more people are aware of mj than gwen hence she's the one we got.

Exactly. And you can't start a movie franchise like that, which you also want to hook the kids with (most of whom only know Spiderman through cartoons anyway) by having the first chapter end with the death of the girlfriend.

That's the kind of fathfulness that doesn't translate. This is a movie. It took years for the comic to work up to Gwen's death. You can't do that here, not like that. To toss that tragedy into a 2 hour movie, right a long with uncle Ben's death would've been a very bad decision. You basically end the story with the same type of traumatizing loss as you start with. It would have been a far less successful movie and deservedly so.

This way they still had Peter's decision that his loved ones shouldn't be in danger as well as his failure to really live up to it (he looks up MJ in SM2 again) and you have MJ who, like in the comics, finds out who he is on her own.

What Mori said here about the controversies of the X-Men script does sound intriguing though. I'm not that dead-set on the Phoenix story since without the Hellfire Club, the Shi'Ar or the end battle on the moon, the story is already so changed it's almost unrecognizable. And no, the water flood is not a good substitute for a space capsule and a solar flare. Jean should've been able to hold the water off from inside the Blackbird and simply fly off with the rest of them. I don't know, maybe they'll still make it work, but...
For me, Vaughn would worked. I think he had passion for the movie.

I really want Joss to do the movie, so i hope they will give him more time, and will let him to write his own script.

X3 looks like a good movie, it has potential, but it looks like they´re destroying it.

I loved Zack Snyder's Dawn of the Dead.

But... Brett Ratner? Come on! NO, please!

[ edited by Angel TheVampire on 2005-06-02 20:03 ]
Yes, yes, *loved* Moriarty's comments about how making the movie would be a step back for Joss. I find it hard to believe, even with the excellent cast and big-budget effects, that Joss stepping in at this point would result in a film that could even approach the quality of his run on Astonishing X-Men.

On a different note, I'm actually a pretty big fan of Singer's X-Men films, especially the first. Granted, I'm less attached to the source material (I have trade paperbacks of the early-80s Claremont/Byrne run, and of Grant Morrison's stint, but that's about it), but Singer's "Let's treat this as a science fiction movie, not a superhero movie" really worked for me. Yeah, the female characters could have been treated better, but I thought that was more a case of them not getting dealt with enough, rather than being dealt with badly. Which is annoying but, you know, less offensive.
I liked the look of the first couple of X-men movies, but I felt that some of the acting and dialogue was lame. I actually loved both of the Joss lines that stayed in (despite the flubbed delivery on the toad one). But yeah, the women in the movies ended up being pretty underused.

This whole movie is looking more and more like a trainwreck, which is disappointing. Note to Execs: Scrap your stupid friggin' schedule, and either let Joss write/direct, or wait for Singer to come back. You are KILLING your franchise.

Also: Anyone here remember when a movie was just a damn MOVIE, and a sequel or a trilogy was relatively rare? Now it seems like every stupid romcom has to have a trilogy prospect. Yeesh.

My problem with the Ratner choice is that he seems to depend on his actors to drive the film. He'd be LOST with an ensemble cast.
It's someone who studios like, who is considered an A-list director, but sort of by default.

Oh, dear God.

Chris Columbus?
Heidi MacDonald over at The Beat has this to say about Vaughn leaving:

A highly placed Hollywood-type writes to tell us that Matthew Vaughn was NOT "fired" from X-MEN 3. The real reason for his leaving the production was that he and his crew didn't feel they had the time or the budget to make the kind of movie people were expecting.

If this is in fact the case, that trouble smell you sniff is not going away any time soon.

It really seems like 20th Century Fox is rushing this movie and I'm glad Joss isn't involved.

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