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Posts Tagged ‘Grant Morrison’

Bruce Wayne is heading back to the present day

Posted by LiveFor on May 6, 2010

For those who didn’t know, Bruce Wayne didn’t die he was simply sent back to caveman times by Darkseid’s Omega Beams. Don’t worry if that doesn’t make any sense. This is comic book excellence and you just go with it.

He has been rumoured to return and that finally begins to happen next week with issue 1 of Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne from Grant Morrison and Chris Sprouse.

This is the first of six time-hopping issues and starts in the caveman times.

Andy Kubert did the cover and it should be one hell of a journey.

CBR have a preview of the first image.

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UPDATED: Exclusive Interview – Paul McGuigan talks modern day Sherlock Holmes, Deathlok, Bond, Grant Morrison and more

Posted by LiveFor on February 22, 2010

Scottish director Paul McGuigan made his name with British gangster film, Gangster Number 1 before moving across to the States where he worked with big names such as Josh Hartnett, Bruce Willis and Morgan Freeman in Lucky Number Slevin. With his energetic and unique visual style, McGuigan is one of the biggest Scottish directors working in Hollywood today. We were lucky enough to catch up with Paul to discuss his previous films and his upcoming projects. Richard of LFF took the interview so without further ado over to Rich.

When I call, he is taking a break from editing his latest project; a modern day take on Sherlock Holmes for the BBC with Benedict Cumberbatch as Holmes and Martin Freeman as his loyal sidekick Watson. Three feature length episodes are planned; McGuigan will direct the first due out in the autumn.

(Noise)
PM: Sorry, I’m editing next to Dr Who, there was a big meeting today it’s a bit noisy

McGuigan eventually finds a quite spot in the corner and I open by trying to grab some information about the rumours surrounding his next film.

LFF: So I heard some news about a new project this morning, can you talk about it?

PM: Well I’m hoping to sign on in the next few days.

LFF: It’s written by the guys that did The Hangover, right?

PM: Yeah, it’s their next film.

LFF: Is it a flat out comedy?

PM: It’s a comedy thriller. But I’m waiting until the ink has been dried on the contract before I can really start talking about it.

The Acid House


LFF: Of course. So I was going to start by talking about some of your older films, The Acid House was your first feature, right?

PM: It was yeah, it was three short stories. I initially directed one short called The Granton Star Cause and it did pretty well on Channel 4 so they wanted to do all three. I’d only done documentaries before and was a photographer before that, so when Irvine Welsh asked me to do it, I initially turned it down because it wasn’t what I was used to doing. But then he told me about the story about the man having a bad day, meeting God in the pub and it was just crazy! I thought if it’s going to fail I may as well go out in a blaze of glory. It turned out to be such fun to do, Channel 4 wanted it to be a proper Irvine Welsh story and not filter it for an English audience. It was fun.

Paul Bettany in Gangster Number 1


LFF: So after that you made Little Angels (a docu-drama focusing on heroin addicts) and Gangster Number 1. Along with The Acid House, did you get the feeling you were marked as a controversial director?

PM: Aye, but I’d say life is pretty controversial, I mean you’re going to come cross times when you’re not in a good place. Sometime real life is not filtered through on to the screen in the way some people would like it to. Life imitates art whereas art never usually imitates life and art always imitates art if you will, so for a genre like gangster films the only reference points we have of gangsters are through the cinema, and we just keep copying ourselves which means we portray gangsters in a certain way. But that’s fine that’s a good way of getting to an audience because they are comfortable with that, it’s what they are used to, but then you have to start breaking down some of the barriers of it. The lifestyle isn’t always glamorous; it can be ugly and violent. I always think violence is a hard thing for a director to portray; I don’t want to advocate it’s like pornography where you get off on it because that’s not the case. Violence to me is always the sounds and the hatred in the person perpetrating the violence. So what I wanted to do (In Gangster) was kill the audience that were watching it, you don’t see much when Paul Bettany strips naked and butchers the guy with an axe, but it’s still a very violent scene. I didn’t want to let the audience off with that you know? I wanted to show that violence was not glamorous. It’s also hard trying to find new ways to shoot violence, give it an original point of view to all the others.

LFF: Even though a lot of people really like Gangster Number 1, do you think it’s a bit underrated?

PM: I think a lot of my films are. Any director will tell you that about their movies. It seems to take time for people to find my movies. It’s like Lucky Number Slevin, it didn’t make millions at box office but then went on to make a ton on DVD. It’s almost like people found it and went “oh I’ve found this cool movie” and then claim it for themselves. It was the same with The Acid house.

LFF: I think I know what you mean. I stumbled across Wicker Park in Blockbuster, had never heard of it but I went on to enjoy it.

PM: Yeah It’s strange. I don’t think my style is as palatable to a mainstream audience marketable and it is to certain people. Production companies always seem to find them hard to market. Its like, “is Wicker Park a love story? Is it a thriller?” Well no, it’s not a love story because if it was a love story I would have shot it differently, so yeah it’s a thriller. So they always seem to have a problem marketing it.

The Reckoning


LFF: I was reading up on a film called The Reckoning but I had never heard of it.

PM: Well the reckoning is a prime example of bad marketing. I’m working with the likes of Martin Freeman and Benedict and they have never heard of it, it’s about the birth of modern day theatre you’d have thought they might have seen it! (laughs) It’s not bad, beautiful looking film, but it’s quite an art house movie, I wasn’t trying to make a mainstream film I just wanted to make a film about something I thought was interesting.

LFF: It boasts a great cast too.

PM: Yeah it’s got Paul Bettany, Vincent Cassell is in it, Wilem Defoe, Brian Cox.

LFF: I can’t seem to find it anywhere!

PM: (laughs) well there you go! But essentially it’s an expensive art house film lets put it that way, ill hold my hands up and say that’s what it is. But after that I realised I just needed to concentrate on what I’m best at and try and make films people want to see.

LFF: So after that you moved to the US, was it Gangster that brought you attention from America?

PM: Yeah it definitely was, it was a great calling card. I got a call from Robert Newman and he said it was getting a great reaction. After that I got the chance to meet Bruce Willis and some other big actors who said they wanted to work with me, and later on they came true to their word and worked with me on different projects over the years. But it still is a great calling card, people really like it.

McGuigan and Freeman - Lucky Number Slevin


LFF: After you completed Wicker Park in the US, would you say Slevin cemented you over there?

PM: To be honest it’s all indie companies I’ve worked for so I’ve always been on that side of the fence. Even with Push, I’ve never a studio movie.

LFF: I assume the next one will be for a studio?

PM: It’s not like I go out of my way to avoid it. I have been attached to various Marvel projects to James Bond.

LFF: Really?

PM: Yeah for Casino Royale. I was down to the last two, it would have been great and I haven’t given that one up just yet. Not like playing for Glasgow Celtic or playing in front of a crowd at the Barrowlands, some things you have to give up (laughs) but that’s not one of them.

LFF: Who would you cast as Bond?

PM: I think James McAvoy would be great. Daniel Craig is very good though. The thing that I didn’t like about Quantum of Solace is it took itself too god damn seriously. There’s a great sense of fun attached to Bond films and that has to be embraced, you can be serious when it’s required, but you just have to relax a bit.

Deathlok

LFF: Another project you were linked to was Deathlok

PM: Deathlok was just taking too long in development. David Self wrote it and it was a great script, the hardest thing bout Deathlok and this sounds crazy but was to get the idea of Knight Rider out of my head! Just couldn’t get over that. I really wanted to do that film but I had to put on the backburner.

LFF: But you got to kind of make a ‘superhero’ film with Push.

PM: I suppose so, yeah, but I never really approached it that way. Push was me wanting to do an action film, you know? Before the Acid House I never watched Trainspotting, so I never watched X Men or anything like that which might have influenced the way I do things, I just like to do my own thing. But obviously certain people and studios always want certain things in there.

LFF: Push isn’t as glossy, if you will, compared to other ‘superhero’ films

PM: I would have made it grittier if I could have! But what you have to remember is with these ‘superhero’ films if you want to call them, is that you’re up against these big budget pieces with the greatest technologies available. Push was made for $25m, which is a lot of money, but that’s not much compared to those films which are up to £100m now. But that shouldn’t put off and I think it’s a pretty cool movie.

McGuigan with Chris Evans - Push


LFF: So let’s talk about Sherlock again, is it anything with Guy Ritchie’s recent film?

PM: No. It’s written by Steven Moffat who does Doctor Who and Mark Gatiss from League of Gentlemen. They are big fans and wanted to do an updated version, he has to be smarter now he’s up against all this new technology. I think it’s harder to make him modern and immediate being set in the present day rather than back in the olden days. I thought Guy Ritchie’s film was entertaining, but that’s what it has to be as a lot of people see it as a bit of a romp. But we want to bring it back to the clever detective side. The BBC are putting a bit of a wedge behind it so hopefully it will do well.

LFF: So no pipes and hats then?

PM: (laughs) No, no hats, but I thought that might be cool. He’s covered in nicotine patches and that kinda stuff. It pays homage to the originals, it still feels like Baker Street but with plasmas televisions.

Grant Morrison


LFF: The Acid House is still the only thing you have filmed in Scotland, would you be interested in making something else there?

PM: Yeah Grant Morrison and myself are working on, I wouldn’t call it a secret project, but a project with Stephen Fry and it’s a thriller set in Scotland. Me and Grant have been friends for a while and we wanted to do something together and Grant went off and wrote a treatment, so it’s at the treatment stage at the moment.

UPDATE: The show is going to be called Bonnyroad according to Bleeding Cool. END OF LINE

LFF: Is it a full series?

PM: It’s seven episodes. It takes place over seven days around an event that happens in Scotland. It’s a modern take on an old fable or fairy story. If you know Grants work you might have an idea of what it will be like. It’s like Twin Peaks meets Brigadoon! It’s off the wall and smart but in a watchable commercial way. It’s still in the early stages but I’m very excited about it.

LFF: There’s still not a large amount of ‘big’ Scottish directors out there at the moment.

PM: I think we quietly work away, you’ve got MacKenzie and Peter Mullan who I think is great, he has a story to tell. So not quite a full squad yet, we’ve probably got a five a side.

LFF: Do you think more could be done to help develop talent?

PM: There has to be grassroots. Eighteen year olds will look at it and think, “I can’t see a career for me here”, so they make it creating video games and things like that. We need to change that mindset and get back into it. I read some stats the other day and it said film and television in Scotland work an average of seven days a year, that’s no career it’s almost a hobby. It’s sad. But the BBC seem to be keen in putting some money in and hopefully it’s just a bump in the road. There’s some great talent up here, it just needs to be harvested.

LFF: Mark Millar is rumoured to be writing a Scottish superhero tale. Would a film version interest you?

PM: Mark’s a talented boy, but I don’t think he will work with me after I slagged off his last film, Wanted. I never insulted him directly because he didn’t even write the screenplay and I wouldn’t intentionally slag off someone else’s work but certain people stirred it up. The funniest part was when Morgan Freeman, who I adore, started talking about the weavers or something. I just wanted to pause it and rewind it in the cinema and say, “sorry, are they trying to tell us this makes any sense?!” But good luck and good power to the man.

Check out the other LFF interviews including Duncan Jones, Mike Sizemore, Johnny Depp, Tony Grisoni, Michael Marshall Smith, Neal Asher, Leslie Simpson and more.

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Pirate and Caveman Batman? The Return of Bruce Wayne

Posted by LiveFor on December 9, 2009

Last we saw of Bruce Wayne he was hit by an energy beam from Darkseid and was sent tumbling way back into the past.

The DC Universe at large thing he’s dead and Dick Grayson has taken on the mantle of the Bat. All of this was the brainchild of Grant Morrison.

Next year DC Comics will launch a new six issue series by Morrison called Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne. In it we will see Bruce trying to reclaim his memory, his identity and his proper place in time and space.

Morrison spoke to USA Today about the series and here are some of the highlights.

Return is a fairly intricate time-travel story in which the world’s greatest hero, the optimum man, is up against the supreme challenge to his ingenuity and skill. How does Batman get out of the ultimate trap? It has a mystery and an apocalyptic countdown going on, there are some major twists and reveals, and it sets up big changes to the Batman universe status quo.

The first episode is set in the Late-Paleolithic Era, the second is in Pilgrim-era Gotham Village, and we also get to see Gotham in Western or noir style.

Each of the stories is a twist on a different “pulp hero” genre — so there’s the caveman story, the witchhunter/Puritan adventurer thing, the pirate Batman, the cowboy, the P.I. — as a nod toward those mad old 1950s comics with Caveman Batman and Viking Batman adventures. It’s Bruce Wayne’s ultimate challenge — Batman vs. history itself!

I’ve tried to thoroughly research each time period so that the stories work not only as at least fairly plausible reconstructions of life in the real 17th or 19th centuries but also as romanticized “pulp” versions too, while at the same time referencing the more extravagant history of the fictional DC Comics Universe in the background.

This is more for me about putting Batman/Bruce Wayne through my own, and my collaborators’ version, of the ultimate test of who and what he is. So far I’ve had him overcome the Devil, Madness and Death; now we see him, truly lost, amnesiac, and stripped down to basic human survival mode in some extremely hostile environments and unfamiliar situations. He’s the best fighter in his world, he’s one of the smartest and most driven men who ever lived, but we’ve seen him outwit the Joker 10,000 times. This was a way of taking the character off the grid, as they say, and reminding readers what kind of man he is and what he’s capable of. If you wonder why Batman is so cool — here’s why Batman is so cool.

This is an attempt to look at a very familiar character from some unusual angles. And it’s about Bruce and who he is — I want to remind people how the man and the mask are inseparable parts of a terrifying whole.

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Grant Morrison: Talking with Gods – Trailer for Biopic about the comic book writer

Posted by LiveFor on December 7, 2009

The film is directed by Patrick Meaney, who’s been chronicling the life of Grant Morrison – writer of We3, The Invisibles, Animal Man, Doom Patrol and many more – for quite a while now, and interviewing various personalities in and around the comics scene. Among the many notable comic creators that appear in the trailer are Jason Aaron (“Ghost Rider”), Matt Fraction (“Invincible Iron Man”), Geoff Johns (“Blackest Night”), and Mark Waid (“The Flash,” “Incorruptible”).

Vodpod videos no longer available.


Source: MTV

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Grant Morrison and Stephen Fry working on a Doctor Who type thing

Posted by LiveFor on November 3, 2009

grant_morrisonThe always excellent Bleeding Cool had this extremely interesting story.

Director Paul McGuigan twittered earlier;

Pitching meeting today. Grant Morrison out-dressed me with his purple suit. I need to up my game.

McGuigan and Morrison are back in Scotland right now. We don’t know what they are pitching, in what medium, who for, who to, indeed we have no other information available whatsoever.

But if anyone sees a bald thin middle aged guy in a purple suit somewhere in Scotland today, do please report in…

UPDATE: It’s BBC Scotland. I’ve been told for a while that certain people at BBC Scotland are very jealous at BBC Wales for getting Doctor Who and Torchwood. Grant Morrison has talked about wanting to write for the Doctor Who TV show but that he hadn’t been approached. Maybe this is his way of getting his own sci-fi TV show off the ground.

Hell, maybe it is The Invisibles.

UPDATE UPDATE: Whatever it is I understand it will involve national twittertreasure Stephen Fry.

Grant Morrison and Stephen Fry are both polymaths of the highest order. This is where it gets interesting.

God if it was an Invisibles TV show that would be amazing.

Grant Morrison (We3, Batman, Batman and Robin, The Invisibles and so much more) working on a TV show is so cool.

What are your thoughts and what could it be?

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Batman and Robin face The Flamingo!

Posted by LiveFor on October 29, 2009

flamingo
Here is the latest cover by Frank Quitely for Grant Morrison’s next issue of Batman and Robin.

Apparantly Dick Grayson and Damien Wayne (That’s the original Robin who is now Batman and Bruce Wayne’s son as the new Robin – Bruce is back in the past somewhere…come on keep up) most face The Flamingo.

What do you think of the Batman and Robin comic book and what about that Flamingo?

Source: Topless Robot

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Justice League: Crisis On Two Earths Preview

Posted by LiveFor on October 3, 2009

dccrisisI posted some pics and news on this new animated film a while back and now we have some footage.

Written by Justice League alumni Dwayne McDuffie and Bruce Timm serving as executive producer, the feature borrows themes from DC’s “Crisis On Infinite Earths” and Grant Morrison’s “JLA: Earth 2″ storylines with a heroic version of Lex Luthor traveling from a parallel Earth to enlist the aid of the Justice League in thwarting their evil counterparts, The Crime Syndicate. Owlman stands out as the most notable foe, apparently putting “the balance of all existence in peril” according to Warner Bros.

The Cast is as follows:
Mark Harmon – Clark Kent/Kal-El/Superman
James Woods – Owlman
Chris Noth – Lex Luthor
William Baldwin – Bruce Wayne/Batman
Gina Torres – Super Woman
Bruce Davison – The President

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Justice League: Crisis On Two Earths – New DC Comics animated feature

Posted by LiveFor on September 16, 2009

dccrisis
I have still not got hold of the new Green Lantern: First Flight or seen any of the Superman / Batman: Public Enemies animated films that DC have recently released (if any PR people reading this have any screener copies they want to send me to review then send them my way – hey that’s one of the perks of running this site).

However, I do love cartoons, comics and superheroes so anything like this is immediately cool in my book.

MTV had this first look at the new film and it is based on some classic stories from the DC universe – some footage has now been released.

Written by Justice League alumni Dwayne McDuffie and Bruce Timm serving as executive producer, the feature borrows themes from DC’s “Crisis On Infinite Earths” and Grant Morrison’s “JLA: Earth 2” storylines with a heroic version of Lex Luthor traveling from a parallel Earth to enlist the aid of the Justice League in thwarting their evil counterparts, The Crime Syndicate. Owlman stands out as the most notable foe, apparently putting “the balance of all existence in peril” according to Warner Bros.
dccrisisowlman
Earth 2 featured an alternate Earth where all the Justice League heroes had their evil counterparts (see the pic below) and was a very cool tale from the man who brought us The Invisibles, We3, Animal Man and so many more good things.
JLAearth2
Crisis on Infinite Earths is a true classic and featured the DC multiverse being obliterated one Universe at a time. It also featured the death of Supergirl and Barry Allen who was the first Flash to don the full red suit. Since then Barry has returned and a new version of Supergirl has since appeared. That is the trouble with comics. No one stays Bucky dead anymore…not even Bucky although I don’t mind that so much as his time as the Winter Soldier and the new Captain America have been very cool.

Any way I digress and apparantly switched comic book universes in that last paragraph.

The feature’s voice cast will include stars Mark Harmon (“NCIS”) as Superman, James Woods (“Ghosts of Mississippi”) as Owlman, Chris Noth (“Sex and the City, Law & Order”) as Lex Luthor, William Baldwin (“Dirty Sexy Money”) as Batman, Gina Torres (“Serenity,” “Firefly”) as Super Woman and Bruce Davison (“X-Men”) as the President.

All in all this is shaping up to pretty darn tasty. Anyone else excited about it?

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DC Comic characters heading to the big screen – Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison and Marv Wolfman are the Trinity in control

Posted by LiveFor on July 20, 2009

DC Comics have got a few films in the works – The Losers, Jonah Hex, Green Lantern and Warren Ellis’ Red. However, a recent article in THR shows there are a few lesser known characters being developed for the big screen, plus it also explains how DC are going about getting the characters and stories ready for the big screen.

In the past, Warners optioned a property, paying DC a fee comparable to what a property could command on the open market. But while the projects ostensibly were being developed under one roof, many were spread out over a host of producers, each with different visions for how to approach each adaptation.

To bring competing approaches into sync, DC Comics president Paul Levitz and DC’s Los Angeles-based film exec Gregory Noveck have overseen a reorganization of the development slate. While Warners execs still drive the creative side, DC now has more input, making it an actual participant in the shaping of material.

“The creative process is by and large a true partnership,” Noveck said. “They’ll ask us a ton of questions, and we’ll give a ton of answers. We will talk back and forth. We’ll discuss writers and talent, but ultimately it’s their decision.”

Warners quietly hired three of DC’s biggest writers — Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison and Marv Wolfman — to act as consultants and writers for its superhero line of movies. The move involved taking back the reins on projects being handled by such producers as Charles Roven (“The Flash”) and Akiva Goldsman (“Teen Titans”).

Some agents and scribes grumbled about being forced to work with the consultants, never mind that Johns started his career as a assistant to “Superman” director Richard Donner or that Wolfman has worked in animation since the 1980s.

Johns worked up a new treatment for a “Flash” script, being written by Dan Mazeau; Johns will act in a producer capacity on the project, which has not attached a director.

The projects Morrison and Wolfman are working on are in the early stages at Warners, whose execs declined to comment.

The process involves one writer taking point, though the trio do collaborate on projects, reading one another’s materials while hashing out a story that will be at once accessible to nonfans yet still adhere to each character’s long history. The writers also work in tandem with producers, writers and the Warners execs overseeing the projects, showing them treatments and providing notes on scripts.

Meanwhile, other superhero projects are moving forward at Warners.

The studio is taking pitches on sci-fi hero Adam Strange and the underwater hero “Aquaman,” to be produced by Leonardo DiCaprio and his Appian Way shingle.

Also in the pipeline: “Bizarro Superman” being written by “Galaxy Quest” scribes David Howard and Robert Gordon; a sequel to “Constantine,” with Goldsman and Erwin Stoff producing; two concurrent Green Arrow projects, an origin story and a prison-set one titled “Super Max“; and “Shazam,” which was set up at New Line but has moved to Warners, with Pete Segal attached to direct.

However, it will be a while before we see DC’s Trinity of main characters back on the big screen.

Warners and DC still haven’t figured out how to translate “Wonder Woman” to the big screen. In part, that failure reflects the difficulties DC has had turning out a popular Wonder Women comic. Morrison, during a recent Q&A with Clive Barker at Los Angeles’ Meltdown Comics, admitted he didn’t have a complete handle on the character when he was writing the comic “Final Crisis.”

Also, ever since Bryan Singer’s 2006’s “Superman Returns,” a new Superman has been in limbo.

“Our hope is to develop a Superman property and to try again,” Warner Bros. Entertainment president Alan Horn said in April. “What hurt us is that the reviews and so on for the Superman movie did not get the kind of critical acclaim that Batman got, and we have other issues with Superman that concern us.”

On the Batman front, a sequel to “Dark Knight” also is quite a way off. Nolan is open to doing a third installment, but his next movie is “Inception,” an original script he penned and is shooting for Warners.

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What does Grant Morrison have to say about an Invisibles movie?

Posted by LiveFor on July 17, 2009

Comic master Grant Morrison has been talking to MTV. Amongst other things he mentioned the possibility of his classic series, The Invisibles, heading to the big screen.

“Yeah, I’d love to see it, but it’s not happening anytime soon,” said Morrison. “I kind of want to do a different take on it, because obviously when ‘The Matrix’ came out, it was covering a lot of similar areas. There were bald guys in fetish amounts doing kung-fu.”

“We’ve kind of seen that, so I don’t want to go down that road,” continued Morrison. “But I came up with a take on ‘The Invisibles’ that I think is really new, so yeah, it’s something I’d like to see done. I’d like to see it as a video game as well, if anything.”

Now what on Earth would an Invisibles video game entail?

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