So for a while there was a lot of talk about the anthology “A Star Wars Story” movies that were potentially in the works, that was until ‘SOLO’ bombed at the box office. An Obi Wan movie, a Boba Fett and even talk of a Lando solo adventure. However the one that interested me the most was the idea of a Yoda movie, where we follow the adventures of a younger Yoda. This for a while seemed like an actual possibility but besides Solo’s failure in theaters, Frank Oz had stated a Yoda movie would simply be too difficult to articulate the puppet for a feature length movie and would likely need to be fully CGI. I think it could be done, utilizing both old school puppetry blended with CGI. The more I’ve thought about it all the better the idea seems to me, that Yoda should indeed get his own movie though.
So in response to Frank Oz, I think doing incredible puppetry in 2018 with the Disney budget doesn’t seem all that impossible, especially with green screens, CGI being able to erase wires, strings & actors who’re controlling it’s actions. I think utilizing CGI as well to bring Yoda to life in full body shots / lightsaber duels is indeed a must but using puppetry for close ups is also a must. It would be the perfect mixture of both to make everyone’s green Jedi really come to life in an epic full length adventure. Doing it the way they did back in 70’s though? Yeah, I’m certain that’d be quite a headache, though in the 80’s they pulled it off beautifully in the ambitious Dark Crystal.
Which leads me to the next point, imagine a Yoda movie that was more of a modern mix of The Dark Crystal and Star Wars. A spin-off Star Wars Story that maximized the use of real Puppets, exotic locations/sets and a stronger blend of old school fx blended with todays modern tech. It’d definitely be something different for a Star Wars movie especially in this day and age of total overuse of CG in blockbusters. I imagine someone like Guillermo del Toro at the helm, or at least someone who truly loves practical fx work, epic fantasy and incredible monsters. Just the hype of the movie featuring heavy puppetry alone I think would bring something truly unique to the table for today’s young and old fans of the franchise. They could even add some animatronic modifications to the Yoda puppet, giving him more complex facial expressions & get help from The Jim Henson Company to bring it all to life. I bet you’d have a hit on your hands at the box office. Continue reading
Wow! So yesterday Mike Mignola made a stunning announcement that Hellboy will be returning to the big screen! BUT and there’s a big BUT here, without Ron Perlman & Guillermo del Toro’s involvement. This is a bit shocking to many as we’ve been waiting the third and final installment that’s been teased for years. I wish they’d have done it and I feel a bit bad for Ron Perlman as he gave the role his all and has been fighting for the fans for so long to complete the trilogy. With that being said, David Harbour, the cop from ‘Stranger Things’ will be stepping into the role of the big devil himself and he seems like an amazing choice for the role. I can already easily picture him as Hellboy just on his looks alone and the guy is a decent actor as well. So I think they’re off to a great start in terms of casting. I’m hoping that they’ll create Hellboy in the same way they did with Ron Perlman. His and the rest of the BPRD’s make up was incredible in del Toro’s movies and I’m hoping that they’re not going to simply CG Hellboy and the gang. One thing Guillermo did extremely well was the creation of incredible monsters using mainly practical fx and incorporating CGI only when truly necessary.
Also announced was director Neil Marshall, who I was immediately thrilled about, for the simple fact that he’s made easily two of the best horror movies of the last twenty years, Dog Soldiers & The Descent. Both of these movies are mind blowing-ly awesome and they’re 100% rock solid proof that this director just might bring us the best Hellboy movie possible. Heck, I go as far to put ‘Dog Soldiers’ right up there with ‘An American Werewolf in London’ and ‘The Howling’. As excited as I am at the possibility here I realized that ‘The Descent’ was released all the way back in 2005 and it got me thinking just what the hell has Neil Marshall really been up to the last twelve years? Lets find out as it may give us a better idea of exactly what we’re in store for with this new Hellboy flick.
After ‘The Descent’ Marshall went on to direct the lackluster ‘Mad Max’ influenced movie ‘Doomsday’ in 2008. The movie was a bit of a box office bomb and to me didn’t bring anything new or exciting to the table honestly in the post apocalyptic adventure genre. I guess I give him an ‘A’ for effort for giving it an honest shot but the movie was just too bland to make any real waves and has been largely forgotten for the most part.
After that he did ‘Centurion’ in 2010, with Michael Fassbender starring. It was a an ok attempt at a historical hack and slash war movie about the disappearance of the Roman empire’s ninth legion. This was also a bit of a bomb at the box office and largely went under the radar of movie goers. Once again this movie didn’t bring anything to the table that hadn’t really already been done before. One thing though I’ll say are that his movies look great and even Doomsday visually was at least effective in that area. Still ‘Centurion’ is one time viewing and it doesn’t have much to differentiate it from anything else that was being cranked out in the genre at the time.
After that Marshall disappeared from the movie scene directing 2 excellent episodes of ‘Game of Thrones’ as well as episodes of ‘Black Sails’, ‘Constantine’, ‘Hannibal’, ‘Timeless’ & ‘Westworld’. In 2015 he was one of the directors in the horror anthology movie ‘Tales of Halloween’ and directed the excellent installment “Bad Seed” about the killer GMO pumpkin! Loved it…
So what we’ve got here for Marshall is a big return to the silver screen on a big budget flick. I don’t have any reason to believe that he’s going to fuck it up, in fact with a great script which I’m certain Mignola will be part of and the supposed “R” rating the movie’s rumored to get we just might see a more true to the comic version of the character. I think it’ll be much darker, bloody and quite possibly a much bigger hit this time around. I’ve always thought cinematic Hellboy was ahead of it’s time and that the strange Mignola-verse would fare far better in today’s landscape than that of 2008 to movie goers. Hellboy & The BPRD are easily my favorites of the current comic book franchises out there, so this next movie means a lot to me.
If they lift the amazing feel of the del Toro movies and add a bit darker tone (don’t lose all the comedy though) we’ll be in for one helluva Hellboy flick. I’m also hoping that the movie might make a role for Ron Perlman, Doug Jones & Selma Blair (perhaps as villains?) because we all know how badly they wanted a third film. How cool would Ron & Doug be starring as some crazy creatures? Let’s let Neil Marshall return to his true roots and give the Hellboy movies the lethal does of horror they need today. The guy is super talented and his two incredible horror movies he made are proof that Marshall is exactly where he needs to be. I’m hoping this will begin many more Mignola-verse based movies or a BPRD tv series dammit!! So don’t fret I think Hellboy’s indeed in good hands…
Oh man, how many damn times do we have to go back an forth about ‘Hellboy 3’? The news came out recently that Guillermo del Toro was having a sit down with Mike Mignola, Ron Perlman and Co. about the serious possibility of finally getting started on the third and final chapter of the Hellboy movie franchise. I’ve gotta admit I was pretty excited. I really enjoyed the two Hellboy movies, not as much as I love the comic books as they’ve got two very different tones but still they were a totally solid attempt at bringing the Mignola-verse to life. Apparently though the general public wasn’t as taken with the movies, perhaps because of the truly bizarre nature of the characters or the occult horror undertones of a “superhero” movie. Whatever the case I’ve stated before that I simply think the movies were a bit ahead of their time and if released in the current climate they’d have fared far better.
Well it seems the whole ‘Hellboy 3’ thing fell completely apart in the last few days with Guillermo del Toro tweeting “Hellboy 3 Sorry to report: Spoke w all parties. Must report that 100% the sequel will not happen. And that is to be the final thing about it”. Damn. That’s pretty harsh coming from the usually jovial Guillermo. Soon after Ron Perlman tweeted “Superhero seeks employment. Likes, pizza, cats, and the Marx bros.” Sounds like a tragic end to the whole debacle doesn’t it? It makes me really wonder just what the hell (no pun intended) happened in this “meeting” and what led to such a dramatic end to the film’s future? Well amidst my disappointment on the whole thing I found Hellboy creator Mike Mignola’s response extremely interesting as he tweeted “No GDT Hellboy 3 does not mean there is no future to the Hellboy franchise…” Continue reading
Hellboy 3 has from nowhere, suddenly become a real possibility and I’m pretty damn excited about it! I’ve been ranting about getting a third movie made here for a long ass time and with Guillermo del Toro’s recent fan fueled poll bringing the movie back into the limelight it seems it now has a real chance of happening. The movie has been talked about now for almost a decade and because it didn’t make a killing at the box office, making a third movie has been a tough sell for those big greedy Hollywood Studios. Over the years however the popularity of the unique oddball superhero franchise and comic book have gained quite a bigger following than they had back in 2008. So it could it finally be time for Hellboy to get the praise he deserves? I’d certainly say so!
For me the comic book series and all of it’s offshoot titles that Mike Mignola has produced over the years remain to me the most solid superhero comics of the past decade. Though the movies and the Hellboy comic series differ in many ways, mainly in terms of comedy, I think the movies did a great job delivering the heroic demon to the masses. The characters look absolutely amazing and del Torro is likely the one responsible for that. Ron Perlman fits the part like no other could and the rest of the crew like Abe Sapien, Johann Krauss & Liz Sherman couldn’t be represented any better in my opinion. The movies perhaps give us a bit of a lighter side of things than what you will see in the comics and added some romance into the story (which I actually kind of like as the Mignola comics rarely touch on that aspect of things) while visually making the seemingly impossible come vibrantly to life. I don’t think there’s a director I would have trusted more with Hellboy. Continue reading
Well it looks as if Netflix has done it again with the totally awesome new ‘Stranger Things’ series! I’ve gotta say thus far being on episode six it’s easily one of my favorite shows ever. I’m hoping these last three episodes will totally deliver the goods. A lot of new movies have tried to replicate the classic 80’s adventure, movies like Super 8 & even the X-men: Apocalypse. None of these movies have really been able to fully channel the vibes of what it was like to be a kid back then but then comes along this series and they NAIL it. It’s thus far the perfect blend of movies like E.T., Firestarter, Poltergeist & The Goonies all wrapped up neatly in a box. Everything down to the wardrobe, the music and the sheer adventure captures that old Amblin/Speilberg vibe perfectly. It’s not a carbon copy tho they’re also bringing the scares in a big way.
Also awesome is to have Winona Ryder back front and center, she of course is a big 80’s crush of mine (duh right?) AND Matthew Modine too, so that definitely adds to the 80’s authenticity of the show. I’m curious what Netflix’s plan is for the series? Is it a one off or are they looking at more seasons? I guess I need to finish it and see where it’s left off. Here’s what The series creators and directors The Duffer Brothers had to say at this time about a possible second season:
“We wanted to do a couple things with this [first] season. We didn’t want to do The Killing thing. We wanted it to resolve that main thing of Will going missing in the first season. So in that sense, it is like an eight-hour movie. Now, we don’t answer all the questions by the end of the season — there are definitely some dangling threads. The hope is that it feels satisfying but that we left room and that if people respond to it we can go back into this world. But if we do get to go back, it’s not a second season as much as a sequel.”
A sequel season sounds great to me, perhaps they could find a few other 80’s icons to flesh it out? Hmmm..Molly Ringwald or Ralph Macchio anyone?! The possibilities are pretty amazing if you think about it. Continue reading
I’m super happy that Ron Perlman is taking matters into his own hands recently with Hellboy 3!! To me it’s absoutely ridiculous that this franchise remains with out it’s final chapter! I’m a HUGE fan of the movies and HUGE fan of the Hellboy/BPRD Mignolaverse and while the movie took a bit of a different take on the character in many ways I still think Del Toro nailed the look and vibe of the whole comic book world they exist in. I don’t think it was humanly possible to cast a better Hellboy (Ron Perlman) and all of the FX work was 100%! I mean how amazing was Doug Jones as Abe Sapien too?!
Well apparently not quite amazing enough for the masses as we never got the third chapter of Guillermo’s planned trilogy. Perhaps the Hellboy universe is just too dang bizarre for the people who yearn for ultra chiseled male models in costume? But for some odd reason we are getting a sequel to the rather unimpressive forgettable Pacific Rim? What gives? Well Perlman and the rest of the cast are pretty damn excited to finish the story. Good ol’ Ron has been speaking out about getting the third film made saying:
“I don’t have any news for you, but there’s always a chance, I’m getting to that age where, if I waited much longer, ‘Hellboy 3’ will be performed out of a wheelchair. So I was basically trying to say, if there’s going to be this thing, it should be sooner rather than later. I wouldn’t want to be involved in a crowdfunding. I don’t think it’s the fans’ job to fund a movie; I think it’s up to the people who do it professionally. I think it’s the fans’ job to sit back and buy popcorn and Coke and watch a movie and enjoy it.”
So here at Universal Dork I wanna use my voice (what little one it may be) to get more of the word out about making Hellboy 3 finally happen! Let’s not get a rebooted Hellboy just yet, let’s finish the story we started and see what Hellboy’s fate really is. Will he bring about the destruction of mankind bringing Hell on earth? Or will he somehow fight the creatures from deep down in the firey pits? Imagine some of the other BPRD agents added to the cast like Panya, Roger the homunculus, Benjamin Daimio, Howards or how’s about Lobster Johnson?!
And also how about a B.P.R.D. movie?! Or a Netflix series? Give us something dammit! I have honestly been slowly becoming totally burnt out on The Avengers movies, I think that Ant-man looks like a bland 2008 Marvel movie with another boring villain and the same tired formula as most Marvel flicks being churned out. Highly forgettable shit in the end. I really believe the Hellboy movie universe holds a lot more intrigue, horror and mystery at the moment. To me Marvel movies are starting to feel like a bit like a shiny boring Pepsi commercial. But in this day and age that’s what most people seem to dig, and if a film isn’t going to make massive amounts of cash then Hollywood just ain’t interested. The first two films didn’t make an obscene amount of money, so the idea of a third movie being made today I guess is kinda unfathomable.
To me the movies always seemed a little too unique and smart for the mainstream. Crowdfunding may indeed be the only way to get this one off the ground at this point. Or perhaps they could re-cast some male supermodels in the roles of Abe Sapien and Hellboy and make them all sexy? Ugghhh…Despite all of that I still think Ron Perlman’s Hellboy could be the guy who saves the superhero flick….let’s get the word out there!
I love that people these days are using online avenues to make cool movies. Nothing satisfies me more than knowing people are getting things done with the help of true fans. In the end it means that most often times people are really getting what they want rather than a big studio pushing its influence on directors and turning a good idea into a load of bullshit. So we’ve got to take some time out from covering the glossy, over hyped, fully bloated flicks that Marvel & DC are cranking out and give some smaller projects some hype here. One such project is called “The Void” which you can help fund directly on Indiegogo if you’re a fan of old school monster movies, the kind we used to get back in the 1980’s back when life was a little more simplistic and the movies were a bit more of an art form. It’s pretty clear just by this amazing poster for the project that these guys are on to something awesome!
Here’s a little more info on the pitch:
“Cult indie directors Steven Kostanski and Jeremy Gillespie (Manborg, “W Is for WISH” from ABCs of Death 2) and producer Casey Walker of Cave Painting Pictures (A Little Bit Zombie) have launched an Indiegogo campaign to get a head start on pre-production for THE VOID, an original horror film that pits a small-town police officer against all manner of otherworldly creatures in a derelict, rural hospital.
“We’re launching this campaign early in order ensure that the film’s special effects are achieved practically. It’s important to start building our film’s creatures immediately to ensure we can realize them on set and in-camera,” said Kostanski and Gillespie.”
This sounds like my kinda movie, the type I’m always hunting down, whether it be a lost 80’s flick or a new one this is the kind of stuff I want to talking about here at Universal Dork. This trailer looks like a damn fine time and the effects look quite impressive already-so imagine what could be done with a little more funding. Check this shit out and if you have a few bucks to spare throw it their way! I’ll be watching out for this one!
I’ve raved here before about The Power Lords action figures from the 1980’s, they were probably some of the most bizarre action figures of that decade and that’s exactly why I needed them all!! Finally someone thankfully uploaded one of the vintage TV commercials that got me all revved up as a kid and I’m starting to think I need to hunt all these down again for myself! The Power Lords weren’t very well known and that’s probably because these action figures were creepy as fuck!
As a kid even I was a little off put by them in the best way possible-I mean the hero of the power lords is Adam Power a decent looking gentleman until he turns into a blue skinned, black eyed, veiny super powered weirdo!! Check out these classic adds, I’ve gotta say I love that animated sequence it opens with, if only they had a full on animated show back then!! Damn!
Now THAT’S what I call some cool action figures!! I must admit I had He-man go up against the Power Lords many times and Adam Power always won, then of course they teamed up and took on Skeletor & Griptogg!! Check out this awesome video to get a full on look at how cool the Power Lords mythos really was!!
It’s really no surprise that The Power Lords were created by Wayne Barlowe who gained a cult following for his book “Barlow’s Guide to Extraterrestrials” way back in 1979. It contains his visualizations of different extraterrestrial life forms from various works of science fiction, with information on their planetary location or range, biology, and behaviors, in the style of a real field guide for animals, such as Roger Tory Peterson’s guide to birds of North America. I may have to hunt down this book too while I am at it!! Barlow has also worked on creature designs for movies like Pacific Rim, Blade II, Both Hellboy movies, Avatar & The Hobbit!
Ho Ho Ho & the horror of it all! I just finished the novel “Krampus: The Yule Lord” by Brom the other evening and it was an awesome holiday journey! Now this could in fact be old news to a lot of you out there, but I was only recently turned on to Brom by way of this here book. Even though I LOVE the Krampus mythology to death I wasn’t quite sure about delving into the book until I read one of the endorsements on the back cover by easily one of my favorite comic book writers and artists of all time, Mike Mignola. Yeah the man most well known for Hellboy was quoted saying “Terrific. A wild ride–the idea sounded like a stretch and I’m not sure how many guys could have really pulled it off, but Brom sure has. I loved it. It hooked me and I couldn’t put it down. Plus, the illustrations are amazing.”
At that moment I knew I was going to love this book to death. Turns out Mignola was dead on (of course), the book is simply an incredible epic ride. It reads more like a comic book and in my mind I had grand visions of Guillermo Del Toro adapting this one to film. It tells a the story of a man named Jesse who’s a down on his luck, boozin’ musician in West Virginia who lives in a trailer and longs to win the love of his ex-wife and daughter back. On Christmas eve though this year, after a night of drinking he spots something quite strange in the sky above, what appears to be “Santa” flying in his sleigh trying to fight off some sort of demonic men. As Jesse is no believer in Santa, he’s downright perplexed until this sleigh from the sky crashes nearby and he’s face to face in the dead of a cold winter’s night with the creatures himself. As he fights for his life he also stumbles upon something else that has fallen from the mysterious sleigh, an odd bag that seemingly has no bottom to it.
This begins a tale full of mystery, monsters, folklore and grand adventure. Don’t be fooled by the whole “Santa Claus” aspect of it though, this isn’t a kid’s book by any means. This story is filled to the brim with gore, scares, suspense and foul backwoods language. It’s also got a some great twists and turns in the plot that will have you guessing ’til the very end. And it doesn’t hurt that Brom has a truly unique way with words that puts you right there in all of the creepy action as he paints the perfect picture quite literally. Yes, Brom is also quite an amazing artist getting his start with Dungeons & Dragons way back in the day(yeah how cool is that!), this book has some truly breathtaking art within. I’m eagerly awaiting checking out more of this guy’s work.
I’ve gotta say it- now is the time to pick this book up it’s a must read this holiday season and appeared first back in 2012. Once you jump into the first chapter you won’t be able to stop reading, especially if you’re a fan of Christmas horror and Krampus mythos. The story is huge, Brom did his homework on the vast Krampus folklore but it’s kept to a very personal level following Jesse (who I picture in my head as kind of like Nick Stahl in Carnivale every time the character opens his mouth). I hope Mignola adapts this to comic book form or someone picks this up as a movie. I’d love to say more about this book but alas I wouldn’t dare want to spoil all of the surprises-Pick this up now, grab some spiked egg nog, a candy cane and curl up by the fire this season you won’t be disappointed! The Krampus is on the move this holiday season!! Here’s a cool interview with Brom:
December can’t come quick enough! The new series from Dark Horse called Hellboy & The B.P.R.D. is on the top of my list for comic books I’m totally pumped about! It’s cool already to know that Hellboy’s early adventures with the B.P.R.D. will finally be told in detail, it’s great news to know John Arcudi will be joining Mignola as writer on the series, but what’s got me even more pumped is Alex Maleev joining as the series artist! Maleev has been a favorite of mine ever since the amazing Bendis run on Daredevil-if you’ve never read that stuff you are missing out bigtime. I love the current run of B.P.R.D. but I often wish for the return of Hellboy & Abe Sapien to the team. It looks like my wish is coming true, here’s a few pic’s that have me excited about this book!
Here’s some panels from the only other Maleev Hellboy, a short story called “Still Born”
And the synopsis for the new series first arc sounds top notch…
“A bizarre series of murders and rumors of something worse lead Professor Bruttenholm to send a young Hellboy to a Brazilian village on his first mission. Hellboy and a small group of agents uncover something terrible in the shadows of a sixteenth-century Portuguese fortress . . .”