Posts Tagged ‘Iron Man 2’

Hodgepodge

December 4, 2009

What happens when you cross this:

With this?:

Answer? You get this:

ANNNNNNNNND this:

Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow in Iron Man 2. Oh ho ho, that movie will be good based on the cast alone. Casting WIN! The above is payback for my recent unexcused absense. Though I will now try to further excuse it. It has been a BUUUUUUUUUUUUSY last two weeks, boys and girls. No excuse for blog-laziness, I know, but still, its been crazers these past few weeks. That being said, time for shway updates!  SHWAYDATES!  Copyright! Here is a quick list of randomness I have found around the internets that is incredibly wunderbar.

The /Filmcast: After Dark has a wonderful discussion about film criticism and whether it is a dead/dying/overtaken by noobs art. Spoiler alert for  Children of Men, American Psycho, and Blade Runner Blade Runner? Really?

/Filmcast After Dark Ep. 77

Cinematical has a pretty spiffy article about the ability of gay actors to openly come out of the closet and what it will mean to their career in the long run. The article focuses on Rupert Everett, which is a shame, because Everett is known in the community as a whiny, narcissistic, troublemaker and giving him any agency to represent the LGBT community is a bad idea. Make sure to read the comments below the article, as well.

Cinematical

Sundance is coming up and indieWire has a decent account of the action that is in the works.

indiWire

Though it was published over two years ago, I stumbled upon a pretty great little article on /Film that had an excellent little spiel about the proliferation of promising directors from the late 90’s and what the hell actually happened to them. Short, yet to the point, the article ponders what factors are contributing to this general content malaise and what can be done to prevent it. Funny that two years later we just now seem to be getting back to a formidable level of content across the board, rather than just waiting anxiously for the next Pixar or Superhero franchise.  Which I wouldn’t have a problem with if they each released 2 films a month.

Vintage /Film!

And finally, ANOTHER /Film article (I just love them so much) written by the always-well-versed Hunter Stephenson. A new futures trading market named the Cantor Exchange is attempting to soon go public. The Cantor Exchange will be the first system to trade futures on box office gross’. /Film has a very well written and interesting article on what this overt commoditization will have on the entertainment industry and the art of filmmaking itself.

/Film

ANNNNNNNNNNNDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD in smaller news…

_Zombieland 2 has been greenlit

_Justin Timberlake will star in the story of Facebook, The Social Network.

_Alec Baldwin insists that after 30 Rock he’s done acting. Personally? Not such a bad thing.

_Robert Duvall MAY be Don Quixote in Gilliam’s re-attempt at the tale.

_Spielberg drops his remake of Harvey.

_Oh, and did I mention that Comcast bought NBC Universal? No biggie, just wanted to put that out there…

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2009-2010 Must-See List

September 15, 2009

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After a lackluster-at-best summer movie season, we have all been (strangely) blessed with an incredible 09-10 season to look forward to.  I seriously haven’t been this jazzed about movie-going in a few years.  It seems that an amazing new debut is announced weekly at this point, which is really cutting in on my Hollywood bitching time.  Below, I’ve created a haphazard, make-shift rundown of what I am absolutely chomping at the bit to see in the upcoming season:

ROAD MCCARTHY FILM 2
The Road-Cormac McCarthy’s novel’s big screen adaptation was recently pushed back to Thanksgiving, frightening me all the more as I fear that studios are losing faith in its bankability.

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Sherlock Holmes-Robert. Downey. Jr.

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Alice in Wonderland-Tim Burton’s CGI-fest update of Lewis Carrol’s classic.  Though I am EXTREMELY skeptical, Depp as the Mad Hatter with Matt Lucas, Helena Bonham Carter, Anne Hathaway, Michael Sheen, Crispin Glover, Stephen Fry, and Alan Rickman are keeping my cries of “CGI-FOUL!” at bay.

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Iron Man 2-I’m intrigued to see Downey fight Mickey Rourke.  Intrigued enough to include this entry on this list.  Past that, to be honest, I don’t see this film panning out much differently than its predecessor, but, as long as they deliver on some great Downey/Rourke headbashing, I’ll be content.

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The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus-This is, hands down, the crown jewel of this list.  Terry Gilliam’s fantasy epic starring the late Heath Ledger had to improvise with its script as Ledger passed away during filming.  So what is one of the most revered directors in Hollywood to do when he loses his lead actor?  Simple, he calls in Johnny Depp, Jude Law, and Colin Ferrell to replace him.  All in one movie.  Johnny Depp, Jude Law, Colin Ferrell, and Heath Ledger all play the same role.  I was trying to come up with a new word to describe this event, but I simply can’t.

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Zombieland-I’m not even a self-professed zombie-buff like many of my co-horts, but the trailers for this endeavor look too astounding to pass up.  Watching Woody Harrelson annihilate zombies while taking the less-than-menacing Jesse Eisenberg under his wing is all I wanted over the summer ’09 movie season.  Was that so much to ask?

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I Love You Philip Morris-Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor in a dark comedy about an inmate who breaks out of jail once his lover is released from the same prison.  I love Jim Carrey.  I love Ewan McGregor.  I love the premise.  I Love You, Philip Morris.  (I’m sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

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A Christmas Carol-Robert Zemeckis retells Dickens’ classic utilizing Jim Carrey as Scrooge and all three ghosts.  Need I say more?

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Fantastic Mr. Fox-Wes Anderson helms this Roald Dahl retelling with a cast the likes of Meryl Streep, George Clooney, Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, and Owen Wilson.  CAN. NOT. WAIT.

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Inception-Christopher Nolan’s first at-bat (no pun intended) since The Dark Knight.  A sci-fi/thriller starring Leo DiCaprio.  How many good things can we combine into a single movie? 

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Youth in Revolt-Michael Cera adopts an alternate persona all in the hopes of wooing a love interest.  My description doesn’t do the title nearly as much justice as images of Cera with a faux mustache. 

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Bronson-Having been called A Clockwork Orange of our time, Bronson chronicles the true story of Charles Bronson, the prisoner, who attained superstar status from simply being an unruly inmate.

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(Untitled)-An art flick commenting on the absurdity of art flicks and art in general.  Seems to be everything Art School Confidential promised to be but failed to deliver on.

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Gentlemen Broncos-Jared Hess’ latest directing forray is a surreal fantasy about a down-on-their-luck sci-fi writer who steals a young boy’s manuscript and profits greatly.  I was sold upon reading “A surreal fantasy.”

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The Box-Richard Kelly (who I’m STILL giving credit for Donnie Darko) directs James Marsden and Cameron Diaz in a thriller about a married couple who discover an obscure box left on their doorstep.  Try to forget Southland Tales for just a minute and remember: James Marsden.

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World’s Greatest Dad-This could very well be the role that brings poignancy back to Robin Williams’ career.  Williams plays a failed poet father who finds his son dead due to auto-erotic asphyxiation.  To lull his son’s unfortunate fate, he writes a beautiful suicide note that gets absurd publicity and paints his son as a genius.  Williams then must decide whether to out himself as the genius or maintain his son’s newfound celebrity.  Did I mention that Bobcat Goldthwait is helming the project?

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The Vampire’s Assistant-All production stills simply do not do this flick justice, you HAVE to check out the trailer.  Otherwise it just looks like John C. Reilly attempting a recreation of Nic Cage’s The Magician’s Apprentice, and that isn’t even out yet!  This quasi fantasy-quasi comedy-quasi drama seems to be perfect for John C. Reilly who stars in the lead role. After pulling schlock duty at the Apatow-Factory for the last few years, it will be good to see him be able to stretch again and actually play with something with some meat to it.

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Where the Wild Things Are-Spike Jonze’s adaptation of everyone’s favorite children’s book looks amazing and I’m very curious to see how good/bad it pans out.

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9-Back to John C. Reilly!  This voice cast is amongst the best I have seen in years.  Christopher Plummer is a catch in any medium. 

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The Lovely Bones-The trailers all look AMAZING and have kept my appetite satiated for this neo-fantasy thriller involving a young girl slain before her time and her attempt to reach out from beyond the grave.

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Big Fan-Patton Oswalt has put down a show-stopping dramatic performance that has stunned and stupefied most critics with its un-abashedly powerful and sincere dramatic intent.  Oswalt steps out of the image he has been stereotyped with and fully explodes on the scene with a (hopefully) attention grabbing portrayal.

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Not Quite Hollywood-A documentary (which I am usually a sucker for) about the explosion of the Australian film market in the ’70’s.  Pure.  Genius.

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Kick-Ass-Michael Cera and Nick Cage star in Mark Miller’s adaptation of his own graphic novel in which an everyday kid takes on the mantel of the superhero.  Miller’s graphic novel has a die-hard, monstrous fan base while being a relatively new title.  Plus, Nic Cage.

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Cold Souls-Paul Giamatti plays himself in a Being John Malkovich sort of drama, in which Paul, a successful actor, takes part in a breakthrough soul-removal-procedure.

This entire effort seems fairly frivolous, because, while this is all I can think of now, as soon as I finish writing this article, fourteen more trailers will be released and will stupify me.  I’m FAR from complaining, however, as it has been years since I’ve been anywhere near this excited about anything Hollywood has done. Happy movie-going everyone!

Shameless self-promotion, everyone!
Bears With Sparklers

Hope in Cinema

May 20, 2009

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While not too long ago I wrote a page about the overwhelming dearth of sequels, prequels, reboots and remakes that are currently cropping up and strangling the grape vine of creativity in Hollywood, there recently has been a mini-revolution forming just under the surface of Hollywood’s cold, icy exterior of titles that have actually inspired hope in the face of a crippling wave of lifeless franchise flicks.

mystery

First off, Derrick Comedy’s Mystery Team.  Described as a mixture of Scooby-Doo and Super Troopers, the ingenious sketch groups first foray into the feature length market premiered at Sundance to rave reviews, yet, failed to inspire enough faith in its marketability to secure a distributor; until now.  Just recently, Lionsgate’s Roadside Attractions monicker picked up the film for distribution, giving the film a second chance at life.

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I Love You, Philip Morris was stuck in much the same state.  The comedy which sees Jim Carrey play a homosexual in prison who falls in love with his cell mate and attempts to break out of jail once his cell mate is released.  Being a HUGE Jim Carrey fan, the premise sounds wonderfully original yet distributors had cold feet about the project’s homosexual undertones.  Finally, Consolidated Pictures Group picked up the piece and will be releasing it shortly.

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Another title that has been mired by release issues but just recently broke through to see the light of day is The Road.  Set in a post-apocalyptic dystopia where cannibalism abounds, The Road follows a boy and his father on their quest to find food while avoiding peril at every junction.  While the Cormac McCarthy novel-inspired film never had a problem securing distribution in the way of the Weinsteins, the film has been sitting in limbo for quite a while as it was supposed to be released to be a contender last Oscar season due to “Visual effects issues.”  Many speculated that this ambiguous heading spelled doubt and a lack in confidense from the Weinsteins themselves, however, sure enough, The Road has been re-slated for an October 2009 release, just in time to play a role in the upcoming Oscar season. 

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Out of troubled film news and into films yet to be completed, Christopher Nolan’s Bat-sandwiched Inception looks to be another classic work by the director who can seemingly do no wrong.  Little is known about Nolan’s next work other than it is described as “a contemporary sci-fi actioner set within the architecture of the mind,” and it stars Ken Watanabe, Michael Caine, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Cillian Murphy.  The director alone would bring me to my seat, not to mention the bevy of acting heavy hitters.

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And of course, behind Inception, Nolan is expected to follow up with a third Batman that I will see even if he does cast Cher as Catwoman (at one time an ACTUAL rumor).  Rounding out the other superhero themed could-be-goods are Iron Man 2, Thor (Kenneth Branagh is attached to direct), and Spider-Man 4 as Sam Raimi has gone on record to say that he wants to patch up the errors he made in Spidey 3 and produce “the best [“Spider-Man” movie] of the bunch.”

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And since it seems that you can never have too much Robert Downey Jr. anymore, I am also immensely excited for the Guy Richie-helmed Sherlock Holmes slated for release in December of ’09. 

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Judd Apatow’s Funny People looks to be an immense winner as it will tie the Apatow family and the Happy Madison behemoth together to (hopefully) produce one superstar of a comedic drama.  As much of a Adam Sandler fan as I am, his comedic work as of recent has seemed lackluster at best (while his dramatic work has soared to levels that NO ONE thought him capable of) and gone seem to be the days of his comedic classics such as Happy Gilmore, Billy Madison and The Waterboy.  Perhaps pairing with a certified juggernaut in the form of Apatow’s production team will be enough to kickstart the funnyman’s comedy muscle again and get him back to helming the quality comedy that I know he is capable of. 

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And finally, in classic comedic muscle news, there’s Ghostbusters 3.  Now, normally I am COMPLETELY against junctures like this one where a classic, beloved franchise is unearthed an inappropriately amount of time after the series has CLEARLY run its course (see: Indiana Jones).  However, I cannot help but become giddy over the prospect of this film.  And here’s why.  ALL the original cast members (sans Rick Moranis) are back to reprise their role.  And while Reitman seems to be too busy to pick up at the director’s chair, Ramis has been rumored to be willing to step up to the plate and assume the role!  Of course, I will be the very first to come out and say how easily this jaunt into nostalgia could turn out awful (it’s been over twenty years, people) but at the same time, for reasons I can only partially explain, I really want to see this title succeed.  Which is proof that I don’t instantly start to froth at the mouth once I hear the word ‘sequel.’  Only when I hear the words, ‘George Lucas.’

And You Thought Indiana Jones 4 Was Egregious…

April 29, 2009

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This is insane. Absolutely insane. I have been bitching about the dearth of creativity in Hollywood for years now, blubbering about the black hole of originality that the studios seem content to simply stew in. Unfortunately, the viewing public doesn’t seem to mind. Box office sales for that trainwreck Indiana Jones 4 hit $700 million worldwide. I got news for ya, people, studios see a number such as 700 million and instinctively go, “WE NEED MORE!”

To prove my point further that there really and truly is a glut of unoriginal, hack writers, producers and directors owning Hollywood right now, take a look at this incredibly long, sad, and pathetic list of upcoming sequels:

Predator sequel entitled: “Predators”
Alien prequel
Drop Dead Fred remake
Wall Street 2 starring Shia LeBeauf
Clueless sequel
Who Framed Roger Rabbit sequel
Adventures in Babysitting remake
Indiana Jones 5
Fast and the Furious sequel
Tron reboot
Robin Hood reboot
Terminator: Salvation
Transformers 2
DaVinci Code prequel: Angels and Demons
Clash of the Titans reboot
Odysseus reboot
Night at the Museum reboot
Twilight sequel
2 Harry Potter sequels
Wanted sequel
The Mechanic remake
Star Trek reboot
S. Darko: the Donnie Darko sequel
H2: Halloween remake
Crank 2
Nightmare on Elm Street remake
Videodrome remake
Tintin sequel
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot
Toy Story 3
G.I. Joe remake
Sin City 2
Spider-Man 4
Sherlock Holmes remake
X-Men: First Class
Batman 3
Iron Man 2
Ghostbusters 3

Now granted, some of these films I am EXTREMELY excited for. Ghostbusters 3, Batman 3, Sherlock Holmes, TMNT, and a few others (most of the bottom of the list), but it only further serves my point that all we have to look forward to are reboots and revamps of previous franchises. Where’s the new material? Other than Humpty Dumpty and Sucker Punch there is absolutely nothing up-and-coming and original that has me excited. How in the world can this many people involved in “the art of film” come up with this mega-list of repackaged material? A good remake or sequel here and there is wonderful. I loved The Dark Knight. But this? Yikes.

Turtles, Toys, Tintin, and Terrence (Howard)

April 23, 2009

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It’s been a weird conglomeration of news over the best couple of days, but most of it has been PHENOM!!!

toystory

First and foremost, Toy Story 3 is done.  The movie that you will see in theatres is completed…accept for the dialogue.  /Film reports that Tom Hanks was shown a finished screener of the film before he had even begun recording.  And his response?  “Let’s get to work!”  Personally, I’m excited.  Because Pixar has an incredibly stellar track record (especially with their baby, the Toy Story franchise) and Tom Hanks has this strange propensity to choose incredamazing scripts/films.  Somebody poisoned the waterin’ hole!

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Peter Laird, the original creator of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, is helming a new, live-action recreation of the quartet’s adventures and he has announced that the production will feature a sort of hybrid of live-action and animation, with stuntmen in suits being enhanced by a healthy dose of CGI.  I’m not a huge fan of CGI at all, so I am a little skeptical of this, however, with the Turtles original creator at the helm, at least the story shouldn’t suck.  Right?

 tintin

Spielberg and Peter Jackson have been working on Tintin for some time now, but Empire just broke the news that Tintin’s sequel is already in pre-production.  Apparently, Spielberg has been the main man at the helm for the first episode, while Jackson plans to take over most of the directing duties for the second one.  The complete article is here.

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Terrence Howard is PISSED.  After being brutally snubbed by the re-casting of War Machine in the second Iron Man flick, Howard has finally verbally lashed out at Marvel.  And, strangely, Howard actually directs some choice words towards Robert Downy Jr.  For being one of the few members of the cast to receive a bonus for the film’s box office breakthrough.  While I am incredibly far from perfect and, in fact, quite vindictive myself, I must say, Terrence…Jealous much?  Story found here.

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And to end my news-ramble, Mick Foley just recently won the TNA World Championship.  My reaction is the same reaction I’ve had for years now.  Mick…please stop.  You are an incredible talent and a definite living legend in the ring.  But you have a family who needs you and I simply don’t think that bedtime stories with Daddy will be any better if you can’t remember the happy ending.  Please, from a true fan of yours, stop, live off of your residuals, and continue to write.  You have such a literary talent and I am certain that it will become completely squandered if you take approximately three more well-placed chair shots to the head.  I’m no doctor, but I know brain hemorrhage when I see it.

My Forecast: Superheroes are Screwed

April 21, 2009

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Interesting developments in LA-LA Land…Zach Snyder’s latest project, Sucker Punch, has lost half of its cast due to “scheduling conflicts.”  The boys over at slashfilm (who I grifted this story from) seem to think that Snyder’s inability to deliver with Watchmen at the box office may be a component as to why half his cast is ebbing away.  Evan Rachel Wood, Emma Stone, and Amanda Seyfried have all dropped and have been replaced by less expensive actresses, such as, Emily Browning, Jamie Chung, and Jenna Malone (The only validated one out of the bunch for her work in Donnie Darko).  Apart from the news about Jenna Malone (who I think is actually an upgrade) it’s very disheartening to see Snyder’s project falling apart.  The Alice in Wonderland-esque story description found in the above link to /film sounds incredamazing.  Hopefully, it won’t be daunted by Warner’s downgrading of its budget/cast.

So, in my usual way, I’d like to take this opportunity to explore a barely-related tangent.  I am a self-professed nerd.  I ADORE comic books, superheroes and the like and have been especially pleased with the revitalization of the cape and cowl at the box office.  However, I’m becoming more and more afraid.  The only reason that superhero flicks have obtained the adequate funding that they need to be fully relized on the silver screen, is because Hollywood is banking off of the profits established by the Spider-man franchise, Iron Man, and The Dark Knight, to name a few.  As soon as profits start slipping and the genre becomes financially undesirable, the age of heroics onscreen will be as quickly abandoned as it was picked up.  After Watchmen’s flaccid delivery after a WAY hyped pre-release and with the upcoming Wolverine flick’s ginormous propensity to equally suck, it looks as though we may be headed for some rough cinematic seas in the comic realm. 

Of course, all of these noted films are in the present, whereas the future is what we can look to for an indication as to whether or not we comic-lovers are able to breathe easy for the future of our beloved franchise films or if we’re officially screwed.  And my verdict is that we are officially, without a shadow of a doubt, screwed.  The upcoming crop of hero franchises in pre-producition are as follows: Thor, The Avengers, Iron Man 2, The Green Lantern, Magneto, X-men: First Class, Sin City II, Ant-man, and G.I. Joe among others rumored to be in talks.  When you step back and look at this list, you release the absolute breadth of the storys involved.  All of these franchises are big, sweeping, epic stories(sans Ant-Man), incaple of being produced for anything short of The Dark Knight’s production value.  Thor is a mystical Norse thunder god, The Green Lantern is a space odyssey, X-men simply needs to up its value after seeing some of the screens from Wolverine, and The Avengers is the franchise where all these heroes converge.  What I’m trying to say is that there is a HUGE margin for error in the production of theses up-and-comers.  As I have stated before, we have barely mastered the approach to comic books steeped mostly in reality (i.e. Spider-man and batman), we are NOT ready to take on mystical outer space warfare and the greatest collection of spandex-covered heroes in history.  We simply aren’t ready to produce these kinds of work, from both a production standpoint and from a treatment, or a writer’s standpoint.

Hollywood is a fickle beast, to say the very least (Hey, that rhymed).  Once these films start bombing in succession (and believe you, me, they probably will) Hollywood will see the gaping wound it has produced, stop the bleeding, and then routinely move on to some other manner of business (fire up High School Musical 8, boys!).  We have to take our time and step away from certain super hero franchises before we prematurely explore them all in the form of sub-par cinema.  (See The Hulk and The Punisher for, not two, but FOUR perfect examples of this.)