New footage pops up in Australian THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN trailer

Gwen Stacey and Peter Parker in The Amazing Spider-Man

THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN is one of my most anticipated movies of this year. While I enjoyed Raimi's interpretation of the web slinger, Marc Webb's approach looks to be far more serious in tone and, I think, more appealing. Over the past several weeks, numerous trailers have popped up online, most of which feature the same recycled footage you've already seen a million times before. After awhile they just get old, and the newest trailer from Australia, which you can catch below, falls into the same camp, despite featuring a bit of extra footage not seen in the others.

While I still have my concerns over the appearance of The Lizard, Curt Connor's is a great villain with which to reboot the series, despite his alter ego looking very much like a Goomba from the dreadful(ly awesome) SUPER MARIO BROS. movie. It's easy to pass judgment without having seen the movie, but it will be hard to top the performance of Willem Dafoe as the Green Goblin, even if Raimi did give him a weird suit of armor.

As the film's release date of July 3 gets closer and closer, expect to see a lot more about it popping up all over the web.

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THE POLTERGEIST remake is being produced by Sam Raimi

THE POLTERGEIST is a film that came just before my time, but in my circle of friends was built up like a legend. We talked about it in the same way that many people talk about THE EXORCIST. We all ended up watching it, and it certainly spooked us out.

Now the film is looking to do the same to a new generation of movie-goer. Last time Steven Spielberg was on as producer, this time we have Sam Raimi.

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Abigail Spencer joins OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

Abigail Spencer is moving her way up the actor food chain, and after having a stint on AMC's hit show Mad Men, she seems to have projects lining up. Soon you'll see her appear in the action-packed COWBOYS & ALIENS, and she also has a part in McG's THIS MEANS WAR.

Now she is all set to join James Franco in Sam Raimi's OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL.

The film will follow Franco's character as he finds his way to Oz by flight in a hot air balloon, where he must deal with three powerful witches. Spencer will play a woman who allows herself to be a part of Oz's magic act while he is in Kansas. The part is likely to be small, but that stepping stone is a great early step for Spencer. Continue reading

Danny Elfman scoring OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

Having just sat down and re-watched the messy but solid SPIDER-MAN 2, it’s safe to say that one of the best marriages that came out of that film (and in the case of this duo, three other films), was the one sparked between director Sam Raimi and composer Danny Elfman.

Having worked on four films together, the pair seemed to have their friendship break after SPIDER-MAN 2, with an interview with CHUD revealing that Elfman thought that after the sequel he “wasn’t the same person” (thanks to Total Film for the archive of that interview).

However, according to Film Music Reporter (via The Playlist), that is now not the case. Continue reading

Rob Marshall not locked for fifth PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN film

Rob Marshall might not direct fifth PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN

Director Rob Marshall is some kind of lucky. His debut feature, the 2002 musical CHICAGO, won six Oscars including the prize for Best Picture and grossed over $100 million in the States alone. However, his follow-ups MEMOIRS OF A GEISHA and NINE, the latter returning him to the musical genre, didn’t fare quite as well.

Things did turn around, though, as he accepted Disney’s offer to direct PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGER TIDES, the fourth film in the popular action-adventure franchise. Within two weeks of release, it’s already become his highest grossing film internationally and will shortly surpass the domestic total set by CHICAGO, which is currently his biggest film stateside.

Even so, neither Marshall nor Depp is signed on for the upcoming fifth film just yet. It’d be difficult to imagine Depp not returning, but Marshall might be a different story. Disney’s offer to him to helm the fifth feature has been on the table since January, and he’s apparently made no response one way or the other. Continue reading

Zach Braff in final talks to join OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

Deadline is reporting that Zach Braff is in final negotiations to join Sam Raimi's OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL for Disney. Seeing as how the actor tweeted a link to the Deadline story earlier today, I'd say that pretty much confirms he's in.

Braff will play Frank, assistant to James Franco's Oz. In this prequel to the classic tale, Oz is a circus magician whose balloon blows off course and he finds himself in the land of Oz, where he is treated as a powerful wizard who the townsfolk believe is their savior against the evil Wicked Witch. Mila Kunis is set to play the witch Theodora with Michelle Williams playing Glinda and Rachel Weisz as Evanora. Continue reading

OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL hitting theaters on March 8, 2013

Sam Raimi The Great and Powerful Oz

Apparently this week is big for those keeping tabs on release dates. Following announcements revolving around release dates for such films as Relativity’s SNOW WHITE film, Disney has now jumped into the pool, so to speak.

The studio has announced that their upcoming WIZARD OF OZ prequel, OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL will see a release on Marc h 8, 2013, giving it just about 22 months to get its ass to the big screen.  The film stars James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams, and will follow a magician who flees his circus in a hot air balloon, only to land in an area that is controlled by two witches. Continue reading

Michelle Williams signs on to play Glinda the Good Witch in OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

It looks as if Sam Raimi's OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL is slowly coming together with a pretty top-notch cast. Despite rumors that Raimi was seeking to cast Hilary Swank as a witch in his new take on THE WIZARD OF OZ, it appears that he's lost out to the will of Disney, who wanted to cast Michelle Williams instead. Today comes the announcement that Williams has in fact landed the role for Raimi and Disney, and it will see her as Glinda the Good Witch, pitted against two evil sisters.

In Raimi's OZ, Rachel Weisz and Mila Kunis will playthose  two evil sisters who come up against Glinda and the Wizard, "a snake-oil salesman who lands in Oz and helps Glinda fight for control of the kingdom." Oz, of course, will be played by James Franco (seriously, of course). Continue reading

Trash or Treasure: SPIDER-MAN

“Trash or Treasure” is a new recurring feature at Gordon and the Whale in which I return to a film that holds a special place in my heart (for a multitude of possible reasons) - and see if it is still deserving of that place. Have I been holding on to a piece of trash, or are my beloved films still bonafide treasure?

SPIDER-MAN holds a special place in my movie geek heart. Back in the year 2000, when I was just a freshman in college scouring the Internet, I came across a news blurb about a new SPIDER-MAN movie being made. I couldn’t believe it. Spider-Man is my favorite superhero and, from that day on, I became more than someone who had a mild interest in movies, I became a full-fledged movie nerd.

I would search whatever movie sites were around (and, at the time, there weren’t many) to get updated news on the project. Most of my information would come from sites like IGN and MTV News. I even bought a theatrical one sheet of the now-banned “Twin Towers” poster that I will never get rid of. Continue reading


Despite having a rotating door of a lead actor, the upcoming Sam Raimi film, OZ, THE GREAT AND POWERFUL has not only apparently locked in the titular role, but has also found itself quite a witch.

Vulture is reporting that Mila Kunis has left the upcoming Hughes Brothers film take on AKIRA to star in OZ as Theodorah, who later becomes the Wicked Witch Of The West. Actor James Franco is apparently locked in as the titular character as well.

The film will see Theodorah as a love interest for Oz, and “tells the story of the origins of the Wizard, and of Oz's infamous witches like Glinda, who becomes the Good Witch of the North, and Evanorah, who becomes the Wicked Witch of the East (though best remembered as the new, ruby-slippered sub-basement of Dorothy’s farmhouse).” Continue reading