DC Comics on Film

Discuss films of the 21st century including current cinema, current filmmakers, and film festivals.
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Big Ben
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Re: Comic Books on Film

#451 Post by Big Ben » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:01 pm

From what I've been seeing on Twitter with critics first impressions it's probably going to be exactly what you can expect from this line of DC movies. That stuff involving Rotten Tomatoes should tell you all you need to know.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#452 Post by cdnchris » Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:37 am

That's really "conspiracy theory" stuff and I doubt Warner is telling them to delay it (that's along the lines of the fanboys who say Marvel/DC pay off critics), especially since the reviews I've seen so far haven't been scathing if not heaping praise. They seem to be saving its "unveiling" for their new weekly program called See It/Skip It, I assume to get a shit-ton of views, and this is a good film to do it with. If they unveil it sooner I doubt they will get much.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#453 Post by solaris72 » Wed Nov 15, 2017 12:41 pm

cdnchris wrote:That's really "conspiracy theory" stuff and I doubt Warner is telling them to delay it (that's along the lines of the fanboys who say Marvel/DC pay off critics), especially since the reviews I've seen so far haven't been scathing if not heaping praise. They seem to be saving its "unveiling" for their new weekly program called See It/Skip It, I assume to get a shit-ton of views, and this is a good film to do it with. If they unveil it sooner I doubt they will get much.
Given that Warner owns a 30% stake in RT's parent company I wouldn't call it a "conspiracy theory" to think that past DCEU RT ratings might've played some role in this decision.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#454 Post by cdnchris » Wed Nov 15, 2017 12:43 pm

I still seriously doubt that, though. If they didn't want it to get out they would either embargo the reviews or not screen it for critics. It makes more sense that RT just wants the views for what I'm sure will be the debut of really stupid weekly show they want to launch.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#455 Post by McCrutchy » Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:34 pm

So, it looks like Justice League is, financially, a total bust, looking at $96 million for the weekend, which, according to Forbes, is "$70 million less than Batman v Superman, $37m less than Suicide Squad, $32m less than Man of Steel and $7m less than Wonder Woman". This is on a reported $250-$300 million budget (albeit affected by reshoots), and the film, which made about $185.5 million overseas, is looking at $281.5 million worldwide come Monday, when it was tracked to be at $325 million worldwide. Supposedly, the film needs at least $700-$750 million to break even for WB, and I don't know if it will get there.

I saw it yesterday morning, with a grand total of about five people in an IMAX DMR showing, and it was an utter failure for me, mostly because despite it's reported budget, you don't see nearly that amount of money on the screen. I was surprised that there is very little obvious international location work in a film that requires disparate heroes to band together and engage in fighting. Most of the film takes place inside sets, or via shoddy CGI backgrounds, and there is very little sense of an epic adventure, even though there is one sequence blatantly in Northern Europe (it's Iceland), this is in service of Batfleck recruiting Aqua(lung)man, and you basically see everything they do with the location in the trailers. As a non-comics fan, none of the new heroes interested me enough to go see a solo film, though I've just found out Nicole Kidman will be in Aqua(lung)man next year, so depending on how big her role is (I imagine she'll do most of the Acting in the film) I may go see it.

It is also painfully obvious which sequences were originally shot by Zack Snyder, and which were reshoots done by Joss Whedon. I saw a list of changes online, and was totally stunned by how many were obvious to me as I remembered the film. There are sequences where actors (mostly Affleck) look uncomfortable, and scenes where hairstyles change from shot to shot due to the reshoots. Finally, there is a painfully bemusing issue with a mustache on Henry Cavill, which had to be digitally removed for the reshoots, rendering Cavill's mouth like a video game character. I genuinely feel bad for the effects houses on this film, because I'm sure some of the issues are down to studio interference (and again, reshoots), but there is still no excuse for a top-tier tentpole film to look this bad. The production also made the perilous decision to have an all-CGI villain, and the end result is as underwhelming as the character is. The soundtrack by Danny Elfman was all over the place, too.

Truly, it is a mess of a franken-film, and that it is at all watchable is down to some surprisingly serviceable acting. Still, to me, this is proof that only a small contingent of fans appreciate what DC, WB and Zack Snyder did for three of the previous four "DCEU" films, and that most people got so burned by the horrorshow that was Batman v Superman that not even DCs answer to Marvel's Avengers could save the series.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#456 Post by Luke M » Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:25 am

Saw Justice League today and it’s really as bad as everyone says it is. Pretty much agree with everything McCrutchy wrote above. God, the cgi mouth on Henry Cavill was incredibly distracting to the point where nothing else in a scene matters. The all CG villain was a terrible decision. Marvel is out there getting Cate Blanchett to play their villain and DC responds with a cartoon. I did like some of the supporting cast and there’s some potential there for fun standalone Flash or Cyborg movies.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#457 Post by cdnchris » Wed Nov 22, 2017 2:17 am

Luke M wrote:Marvel is out there getting Cate Blanchett to play their villain and DC responds with a cartoon. I did like some of the supporting cast and there’s some potential there for fun standalone Flash or Cyborg movies.
It was pretty shitty for a number of reasons, but the endless cartoon look may have been the biggest reason. Hearing that Hinds was playing the villain seemed promising but it's just a voice performance sadly because, like you said, he's a cartoon. Even my kids commented the film looked like a video game.

Worst of all it was dull. It rushed through everything with one lazily written scene after another, never building up much, and it feels like they're just trying to get through the film as quickly as possible (which is a bit of a blessing, thank God the film is under 2 hours).

I come back to the last Guardians movie and think about how that film was essentially all CGI but there was a life to it, an actual world/universe. That CGI raccoon has more personality (and a surprisingly complex one at that) than all of the characters in this movie combined. And the villain was a planet and yet they didn't go the cartoon route with him.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#458 Post by dx23 » Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:42 pm

Agree completely on the Justice League assessment. And Chris, it looks like a video game because the powers that be at WB saw how much the Injustice video game series sold and they wanted the DCCU to replicate that. That has been how most of the DC staff that I know told me firsthand during conventions. After the negative reaction for everything they had done pre-Wonder Woman, and the box office and critical success that WW got, they decided to change the course and be more like Marvel. Again, the main problem besides the bad CGI, miscasts (I'm looking at you Affleck and Ezra), and bad direction by Snyder, is the fact that they deviate so much from the rich source material. It pains me to see this as I'm as big or more of a DC Comics fan than Marvel. Wonder Woman was so great because Gadot did an amazing job, the direction was great and the source was use heavily on the story. I heavily suspect that DC is going to do a in-story reboot for their universes soon as Affleck seems kin on leaving the role and the other films are having issues getting off the ground.

Infinity War on the other hand seems very interesting, not only because of all the heroes appearing in the film(s) but because it's bringing closure to this 10 year story arc. The fanboy in me would love to see these films bring back the red-headed stepchild, Agents of SHIELD, back to the main story and be part of the movies, even if it is just a cameo. Ditto for the Defenders and Punisher.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#459 Post by McCrutchy » Wed Nov 29, 2017 10:13 pm

As someone who is no big fan of comics, if there must be more movies, then really all I am interested in is getting more Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman (I think they're colloquially known as the Trinity) movies, until DC can show me a solid standalone feature with somebody else. While I actually thought Watchmen was very good, I think WB were outright foolish to stick with Zack Snyder for three straight disappointing blockbuster films, when, in most situations, directors are lucky to even make one such film, let alone be allowed to compound their failures twice over.

I really wish all traces of these films not related to this "Trinity" would be wiped off the face of the planet, but the problem is that WB continued to show poor judgment by overlapping the production and release of Justice League with the production of Auqaman. In Justice League, Aquaman was fairly uninteresting, and basically existed to be shirtless, and to remain on land 90% of the time, so I'm not really enthused for a follow up film. While Nicole Kidman (!) being in it may convince me to see the film, I'm going to have to be impressed by the tone, visuals and the rest of the cast list before I decide to see it, and even then, I'm concerned about WB not making a proper effort to reset themselves if the Aquaman film does well, so that my desire to not add to its box office take may outweigh my desire to see it, regardless.

But honestly, right now, the only comic book movie I am excited for is Deadpool 2. I'm sure I'll end up seeing Avengers: Infinity Pool as well, because the Marvel movies aren't going away, and I did really enjoy Thor: Ragnarok (at least as much as Logan), as well as a few of the other bigger ones. But the Disney Marvel movies really are starting to run together now, and unfortunately, Black Panther is probably the best example of that--a film that looks incredibly generic, based on a hero that has only a cult following, and is probably being made now, only to shoehorn more diversity into the Marvel Universe right before Infinity Pool.

At least with Deadpool 2, the R-rating, comedy genre and larger budget could allow the film to go off in new, inventive directions. Add to that the fact that I found Ryan Reynolds' performance in the first film to be great, and you have a film that is exciting in its possibilities. The only thing that has me nervous is the "sequelitis" that is so common in films, and the issue with Tim Miller departing, and being replaced by David Leitch, but my hope is that with Reynolds and the holdover cast returning, Leitch won't be able to alter the successes of the first film in any damaging way.

But I do miss the days before all these comic book and fantasy films came out. I often wish we could return to the 80s when the box office used to be topped for weeks on end by films like Beverly Hills Cop, and there weren't nearly as many mediocre films being pushed out for a month and then tossed out onto video weeks later. I guess I just wish that studios would go back to taking more time on these projects, and allowing for success over greater periods of time, rather than forcing out a ton of family-friendly films to attract heavy opening weekend crowds at virtually all costs.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#460 Post by Big Ben » Wed Nov 29, 2017 10:26 pm

So yeah about Justice League. Here's an article from The Wrap with some real explanations as to why it's as bad as it is.

Here's why the film was shoved out the door. Hilarious!
One executive told TheWrap Tsujihara and Emmerich “wanted to preserve their bonuses they would be paid before the merger,” and were worried that “if they pushed the movie, then their bonuses would have been pushed to the following year and they might not still be at the studio.”
That's incredible. Take a loss over the film for personal benefit in the short term. Incredible.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#461 Post by dx23 » Wed Nov 29, 2017 11:46 pm

Big Ben wrote:So yeah about Justice League. Here's an article from The Wrap with some real explanations as to why it's as bad as it is.

Here's why the film was shoved out the door. Hilarious!
One executive told TheWrap Tsujihara and Emmerich “wanted to preserve their bonuses they would be paid before the merger,” and were worried that “if they pushed the movie, then their bonuses would have been pushed to the following year and they might not still be at the studio.”
That's incredible. Take a loss over the film for personal benefit in the short term. Incredible.
I find amusing that they are now depending on Aquaman to continue this cinematic universe. Seriously, do they expect Wan, a guy who directs horror films, to provide a light, fun tone that the studio is now looking for? Even worse, do they really think that Jason Momoa can carry a whole film by himself the way Gal Gadot did with Wonder Woman? WB pushed themselves into a corner by rushing films without seeing the results first. Instead of regrouping, they keep digging a hole on this franchise. I'm not saying that the Arrowverse and its actors are the greatest, but man, those shows have been fun watching, something that these films, except Wonder Woman, lack. The CW DC shows just had a 4 part, 2-day crossover event with almost every hero from each show, and it blows away most of what WB has done in their cinematic universe.

WB reminds me of Fox and their continued quest to do a Fantastic Four film. If they don't like the source material, then give it to someone who does and will do a great job bringing it to the big screen.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#462 Post by McCrutchy » Thu Nov 30, 2017 1:00 am

This is precisely why I'm hoping Aquaman fails, because, unless it's somehow amazing, with a sort of Deadpool-like-effect, it's not going to change the DC formula. And, for all the hype that Wonder Woman got, it was simply above-average, and even that couldn't do enough to save Justice League.

In fact, I think Wonder Woman 2 may not be as sure a bet as people think, because if the script and story aren't great, I wonder if it will have the legs of the first film. Remember, a lot of people (myself included) were fans of the Wonder Woman TV series, and therefore, even some non-comic fans had waited for a Wonder Woman film for 40+ years, so I wouldn't be surprised to learn a lot of people went out of sheer curiosity, and a desire to see something different. And remember, DC were in the unique position of having Wonder Woman's extended cameo in Batman v Superman be the highlight of that film, so that boosted the promise of her solo film quite a bit, too. But, the sequel won't have any of that built-in hype, so I think it may need to actually be better than the first one to make a ton of money, especially after opening weekend. Plus, Gadot sure as hell ain't gonna be workin' for no $300,000 salary on the sequel, and Jenkins is probably making more for the follow-up, too.

And consider how much responsibility would fall on Wonder Woman 2 if Aquaman (f**king Aquaman!) shits the bed next year? I mean, if Jenkins/Gadot somehow pull a Nolan/Bale and deliver a sequel that is The Dark Knight to their Batman Begins, then that would be fabulous, but we all know how rare such successes are, especially with blockbuster films.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#463 Post by tenia » Thu Nov 30, 2017 2:45 am

Still amazed on how the DC movies are mostly perceived as mediocre but somehow, WW and the Marvel movies arent.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#464 Post by McCrutchy » Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:04 am

tenia wrote:Still amazed on how the DC movies are mostly perceived as mediocre but somehow, WW and the Marvel movies arent.
Honestly, it's about like more than anything else, and it helps a lot if you like the actors and/or characters a lot. None of these films are honestly that great, but they are sometimes fun or moderately thrilling popcorn adventures. Of the major superhero movies released since 2005, there is maybe one bonafide amazing film, and that is The Dark Knight. After that, the other two Nolan films are very, very good, but from there, you get into very good "for a comic book movie", which is probably where Logan, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, any or all of the Iron Man films, Thor: Ragnarok and Captain America: Civil War would be (in that order) for me.

I actually hadn't seen any Marvel films since The Incredible Hulk and the first Iron Man film back in 2008, when in early 2014, I happened to notice a trailer for Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and discovered that Robert Redford was in it. That spurred me to get the intervening films on Blu-ray, so I could watch Winter Soldier in the theater, and since then, I've kept up with the series, mainly because they often cast actors I like (Jenny Agutter, Cate Blanchett, Glenn Close, Jeff Goldblum, Anthony Hopkins, Ben Kingsley, Robert Redford, Rene Russo, etc.) in smaller roles and I like seeing them on big screens again. I also like Robert Downey, Jr., and I feel he has elevated the Iron Man movies a lot, to where he can even make a movie like Captain America: Civil War much better than it would have been without him.

I am not nearly the fan of The Avengers or Guardians of the Galaxy films that everyone else seems to be, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was childish garbage, in my opinion. I will see Avengers: Infinity Pool (and likely the second one), mainly to watch it/them wrap up this "phase", and then I think I will be done, unless they give a major role to another actor I really enjoy in the future, which seems unlikely as most of those actors are now in their 40s and older.

Since Logan seems to really mean that Hugh Jackman is done with Wolverine, the obvious other exception is Deadpool, which doesn't fit with the others, and was just a damn fun movie, which was a bit naughty, and so refreshing. I will definitely see the sequel, and if that somehow maintains the quality of the first film, who knows from there.

I would also be up for any other interesting superhero films that are released, but the Marvel films aren't that, and while they are entertaining, I really wonder where they will go after 2019, and not in a way that suggests I want to see any other films, either.

In fact, like many people in the past thirty/forty years, I am much more of a Batman/Superman fan than any other hero(es), but it's just that the Snyder films, while visually interesting, have odd characterizations, and take the characters in bizarrely dark directions without just cause.

That's why I really can't wait for this era of superhero films to be over. With few exceptions, all we've had are films that are entertaining, but not that interesting, or re-watchable. Though I will admit, I do want to keep re-watching the Snyder films every once in a while, to try and understand what happened.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#465 Post by tenia » Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:18 am

I haven't seen all the very latest Marvel movies (Ragnarok and Civil War), but have in the end seen pretty much all of the other ones, and whether it's Age of Ultron, Iron Man 2 & 3, Captain America 2 or Doctor Strange, I found them all to range from mediocre to sometimes absolutely unbearable.
Even when fast-forwarding through it, I thought Age of Ultron would never end. Sadly, I don't expect Infinity War to be much better, because seemingly, the team behind these movies don't know how to make so many characters alive simultaneously.

Contrary to you, I liked a lot Guardians of the Galaxy 2, because it felt in a long time that Marvel wasn't just trying to have a "hub" movie for their next crossover but instead was trying to buff up their characters which, too often, simply aren't interestingly written. I didn't like so much what they tried to do with Raccoon because it felt to ham-fisted, but I liked a lot with they did with Star Lord, and even more Rondu.

Logan ? It felt like a R-rated movie that didn't have anything else to offer than, well, being R-rated. It's been a long time since I having the movie trying so hard to focus on something so pointless. In a way, I'm happy they didn't go the Deadpool route, meaning a dumb movie but hey it's gross and vulgar so it must be adult oriented ! But Logan didn't feel mature at all, it just felt like the usual super hero movie, except vaguely darker and gorier, but there was none of the emotional depth I expected to find.

The talents involved in these movies actually make things look even worse for me, because they feel wasted and very gimmicky. Redford in The Winter Soldier ? Oh sure that's an obvious wink-wink to 3 Days of the Condor, but The Winter Soldier is a dumb take on espionnage movie which is a massive misfire on this (on top of being awfully directed and shot).


So as a whole, if I had to grade all these, whether it's Marvel or DC, most of them would get grades between 3 and 6 out of 10, with only a handful faring better. That's why I never understand how some are perceived as so good and others so poor.

To me (and many others, at least in France), they're really all different shades of mediocrity, and that's including stuff like Wonder Woman.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#466 Post by McCrutchy » Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:13 am

That's why it's so unfortunate that they are where all the time, money and investment end up going.

For me, I'd much rather see quality actors in quality films, but the dumbing down of cinema has meant that even if great actors get significant roles in quality films, most of the time, those films get small budgets, and consequently, end up on the smaller screens in the cinema, or worse, never end up at your cinema at all, unless you're lucky enough to live in New York City or Los Angeles.

For example, the other day, I had to watch Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri on one of the smallest screens at my local 24-screen multiplex, despite me seeing it on its first day in the theater. And why? Well, because all the major screens were taken up by Justice League or Coco (or occasionally, possibly Wonder), with the tanking comic book movie still spending at least most of each day on all the biggest screens, in spite of it opening ten days before.

The only brilliant and/or challenging films I've been able to see on the best screens have been the ones that get IMAX releases, or otherwise happen to be thought of as "commercial", which means it was Blade Runner 2049 in IMAX DMR on opening day, Coco at a Tuesday night "preview", and of course, the glorious Dunkirk, opening day in IMAX 15/70 (twice in a row, because it was a day long trip) and then again in standard 70mm at a theater closer to home. Otherwise, I'm stuck with the smaller screens, even on opening day, and at that point, with a 2K DCP for most of these films, a Blu-ray in my home theater setup gets uncomfortably close to the same quality, with a lot less hassle, and significantly more convenience.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#467 Post by tenia » Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:01 am

McCrutchy wrote:That's why it's so unfortunate that they are where all the time, money and investment end up going.
It's hard to blame studios for trying to give what seemingly the audience is craving.
If people would definitely stop making these movies so profitable in most of the cases, studios would stop doing them, or at least slow down.
What seems extremely silly to me though is the absurd budget given to these. Can't they really be done for a bit cheaper ?

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#468 Post by Big Ben » Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:12 am

They can most certainly be done for cheaper. Deadpool had such a limited budget they turned it into a self aware gag involving the X-Men Academy. Note, NSFW. Deadpool was made for 58 million and grossed 783 million. They can certainly make these films without a colossal budget and turn in a massive profit.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#469 Post by dx23 » Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:40 pm

Big Ben wrote:They can most certainly be done for cheaper. Deadpool had such a limited budget they turned it into a self aware gag involving the X-Men Academy. Note, NSFW. Deadpool was made for 58 million and grossed 783 million. They can certainly make these films without a colossal budget and turn in a massive profit.
The first Iron Man also had a modest budget and it made a massive profit. Still, I don't mind huge budgets that provides us with good effects, like Guardians of the Galaxy, as long as the film is good. While I agree that there are several of the Marvel films that are mediocre, like Iron Man 2, Thor 2, and Age of Ultron, most of the other ones are really good films, with some excellent ones like Winter Soldier, GotG 1 & 2 and Doctor Strange.

Hollywood will always be Hollywood and studios will imitate what is successful somewhere else and sometimes prevent from good, original projects coming out, but I've always said, there are good movies, of all genres, still being produced. Directors like Nolan have leveraged themselves into being able to do the films they want by doing superhero films and being successful at it. The same way buddy cop/reckeless cop/big guns action/comedy films dominated the 80's, now we have the era of the comic book film. It translate well from the medium it's sourced and as long as Marvel keeps doing it well, it will continue.
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Re: Comic Books on Film

#470 Post by Big Ben » Thu Nov 30, 2017 10:05 pm

I agree with your sentiments for the most part. Hollywood is going to be Hollywood regardless of what anyone posts on this forum. And now that they've made those big bucks they're not going to stop anytime soon (At least Marvel.)

I'm more than willing to admit that I don't consider many of them "great". I think a majority of them are simple popcorn flicks that are worth their run-time if you're out on a date or with the kids. Aside from Logan (Which I really liked) I don't think I've seen a single one of these films that I legitimately thought was particularly interesting to me in the long term on any level. In fact in the time since this craze started I really only consider Logan and The Dark Knight to something that's really stuck in my brain.

I do however see one very interesting prospect for them and that's minority representation. Black Panther is going to be a big deal for my black friends and that cultural milestone is important. It's important to remember that superheroes are really popular with kids and in this current political climate (At least here in the US) having a black hero up on screen is really great for them.


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DC Comics on Film

#472 Post by cantinflas » Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:34 am


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Re: Comic Books on Film

#473 Post by Professor Wagstaff » Thu Mar 15, 2018 9:11 pm


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Re: Comic Books on Film

#474 Post by The Fanciful Norwegian » Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:01 pm

The latest unlikely director for a superhero project: Cathy Yan, whose sole feature to date is the Jia Zhangke-produced black comedy Dead Pigs, is being tapped to direct Birds of Prey.

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Re: Comic Books on Film

#475 Post by Ribs » Tue Apr 17, 2018 6:10 pm


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