News Column

Comic Con offers sneak peek at upcoming films

July 26, 2013

YellowBrix

July 26--Last weekend's San Diego Comic Con offered a lot of surprises for comics and movie fans.

I watched live feeds of the events online (I'm a comic geek -- went to the New York Comic Con last October) and am most excited about these five upcoming projects.

Man of Steel & Batman

"Man of Steel" director Zack Snyder came on stage in Hall H to talk about the "Man of Steel" sequel and to introduce Harry Lennix, who plays General Swanwick in the movie.

Lennix read off a quote from Frank Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns," which pits a 55-year-old Batman and government-sanctioned Superman against each other in a dystopian future of Gotham City.

"I want you to remember Clark in all the years to come. In all your private moments, my hand at your throat. I want you to remember, the one man who beat you." The S-shield then showed up on the screen, followed by a bat coming up behind it and thunderous applause from the crowd.

Two iconic heroes battling each other? This will probably be one of the biggest movies of 2015.

The Marvel panel

Joss Whedon came on stage to introduce the sequel to his 2012 film "The Avengers," titled "The Avengers: Age of Ultron."

This is another team-up movie that's got everyone excited. Not many details have been released yet, but Whedon says there will be new characters such as Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, who are important to the plot of the film. The first movie's cast will also return.

They also showed footage of "Thor: The Dark World," and "Captain America: The Winter Soldier." These movies, along with May's release of "Iron Man 3," set up phase two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

'Guardians of the Galaxy'

This movie is also part of the MCU, but is much more interesting because it is a team-up movie set in the universe of a team-up movie.

Producer Kevin Feige says that they pitched the idea because they wanted to explore the side of the Marvel Universe that's further into space.

The comic is about a half-alien, half-human man named Star-Lord who brings together a group of ex-cons to help protect the galaxy.

The biggest question now is who is going to play CGI character Rocket Raccoon, who is arguably the most iconic character of the group? Director James Gunn took the helm on movies such as "Super" and "Slither," both of which were great cult hits.

'X-Men: Days of Future Past'

Director Bryan Singer has dubbed this movie an "inbetweequel," finding a place in the storyline chronology after "X-Men 3: The Last Stand," but due to a time-travel element, also takes place after "X-Men: First Class." The story is based on the comic arc of the same name that sends Hugh Jackman's Wolverine into the 1970s to prevent the apocalyptic future he lives in. There he meets a young Professor X, played by James McAvoy, and his then-team of mutants.

This film brings back most of the original cast from the first three movies, such as Halle Berry, Patrick Stewart, and Ian McKellen.

The panel of actors was certainly one of the biggest, and they also showed footage of the new movie, due out in 2014. I was a fan of the X-Men way before Marvel started their cinematic universe, so it makes me very happy to basically get two movies in one.

Robocop remake

Paul Verhoeven's 1987 classic solidified itself in science fiction pop culture. People have been wary of the remake after seeing photos of the new Robocop suit, and remakes have been pretty dull lately.

But I'm willing to give the movie the benefit of the doubt, mainly because of the cast, which includes Joel Kinnaman from "The Killing," Gary Oldman and Michael Keaton.

The film is said to humanize Robocop more by turning him into a cop that gets burned in a car explosion instead of one who gets blown to pieces by a bunch of bad guys. They've even left his right hand attached so he can actually shake hands with people.

Any other things you liked from the San Diego convention? Let me know on my Twitter account @honestten.

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(c)2013 The Roanoke Times (Roanoke, Va.)

Visit The Roanoke Times (Roanoke, Va.) at www.roanoke.com

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