10 Things I Learned This Week

Another “Scream” remake, an OSCAR FOR “NEW MOON”?

Last Updated: November 27, 2009 @ 6:04 PM

1. Wasteland Warriors … for a Weekend
Everyone knows an oil-shortage-and-nuclear-war apocalypse is for keeps, not just three days, but that didn’t stop a bunch of rabid “Mad Max” fans from donning the leather and chains and revving up their motley machines over three days in the Californian desert recently. The LA Weekly story and photos are fantastic, although I’m a little disappointed these faux-barbarians from Down Under flew the New Zealand flag instead of the Australian standard. But, hey, when society has crumbled and the crossbow bolts are flying, you make do, right?

2. What’s the Question?
Ever have those dreams where you’re back at school, unprepared for a crucial exam? Well “Exam," the new British movie by Stuart Hazeldine starring Luke Mably and Jimi Mistry, could be your worst nightmare. I’ve always enjoyed watching filmmakers try to rise to the challenge of a single-set story and this one, about eight high-fliers taking a sinister corporate exam, looks like it could be up there with “Saw” and “Cube” in the mind-scrambling stakes.

 
3. Kat for Thor Eyes
Kat Dennings, who I’ve praised here before, is to join the cast of “Thor." The beautiful 23-year-old, so good in “Nick And Nora’s Infinite Playlist," “Shorts” and “Charlie Bartlett,” is to play Darcy, sidekick to Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster character. With this and “Defendor," I’m again saying it’s only a matter of time before fanboys catch on and turn Ka-Den into the next Scar-Jo.
4. Mr T for "Star Trek"
According to Cinematical, original “A-Team” cast member Dirk Benedict is to join Dwight Schultz in filming a cameo for Joe Carnahan’s big-screen adaptation of the hit 1980s show. Mr. T, though, still isn’t on board, although it is worth noting that his very amusing denunciation of the cameo idea came over two years ago. Who knows where he’s at now? But if he still doesn’t want to play B.A. Baracus Snr, perhaps he could sign up for “Star Trek 2”? I pity the Klingon, etc…
5. "Scream" and Scream Again
According to S. Freud, horror was all about “the uncanny," or the return of the repressed. These days it’s about returning to the last thing that gave you a box-office hit, no matter how wrung out the concept may be. Thus there now, according to U.K. site Black Book, would appear to be confirmation that Wes Craven will be back directing Neve Campbell, Courtney Cox and David Arquette in the Kevin Williamson-written “Scream 4." I liked the “Scream” trilogy, but the interview with Ms Campbell suggests that script and characterization are even less important than we thought.
Q: So you haven’t been sent a script yet, then? 

A: No. Not yet. They had to wait for us all to sign on. I suppose that’s the way these days!”
Ms Campbell then, in all seriousness, claims that getting her black bob right is the key to playing her character Sidney. She then rhapsodizes about the properties of a particular hair care goo before suggesting all readers should try it. So nowadays actors not only sign on before a script is written but they also start doing product placements before cameras roll?
6. "Amityville": Horror
Want something even more depressing than “Scream 4” news? Bloody Disgusting is reporting that the Weinstein Company and Dimension are considering a remake of “The Amityville Horror." No, not a continuation of the 2005 remake that starred Ryan Reynolds and Melissa George, but a brand-spanking “new” remake of the same-old-same-old. How long will it be before movies that premiere in January have their remakes released December of the same year?
7. What Katie Said Next?
Man, I’d give anything to hear what Katie Holmes was talking about non-stop during a screening of “New Moon." “Sources said she kept talking about the film and everything else,” reads the report. Everything else? I’m guessing that the following comments passed the lips of Suri’s mom.
“Tom was such a better vampire in Interview…”
“Ewww, there’s an engram in my popcorn!”
“Hurry up, girls, the tunnel to freedom needs to be finished by the end credits.”
Your suggestions welcome in comments below!
8. New Moon Oscar?
Movieline made great sport of “New Moon” being a strong contender for the Oscars this week. Now they’re running what’re supposedly full-page color “For Your Consideration” ads that’re going to be in the trades next week. Please, no.
9. "Tingler" Turns 50
It was a half-century ago that William Castle released “The Tingler," his most famous gimmick-flick, which gained its notoriety because he had cinema seats wired up to give patrons a mild electric buzz that’d replicate the effect of the feature’s creature.
To celebrate the audacious schlockmeister, Sony has released an eight-film collection, which includes other B-classics “Strait-Jacket,", “Homicidal," “13 Ghosts” and “Mr Sardonicus," along with the documentary “Spine Tingler: The William Castle Story," in which fans like John Landis, Joe Dante and Roger Corman pay tribute to the pioneer.
10. "The Wolfman"
I know it goes against the whole anti-remake thing but I can’t help but be excited still for “The Wolfman,” and the one-sheet posters don’t diminish that. Here’s hoping it’s really something to howl about.