We know very little about the follow up to the epic Bioware series, Mass Effect. We know that the main character is unlikely to return and that the 4th game in the series won't be a direct follow up sequel. Today, developers released a photo of early concept art for the citadel and you can see how it changed from it's early concept art. While Bioware is stating they're in the middle of completion, it leaves the rest of us with a lot of questions. Hopefully we end up hearing more about the next incredible title by the team this June at E3.
Natasha Romanoff, a classic comic book hero who has been portrayed by Scarlett Johansson in the 2nd Iron Man film, The Avengers movie and played a huge role in the latest marvel success, Captain America: Winter Soldier has been one of the most popular and dynamic characters in the Marvel universe. Aside from that, Scarlett Johansson is no small name actress. Coming off of a strong 2013 where she played such roles as Babara Sugman along side Joseph Gordon Levitt in "Don Johnson" and an artificial intelligence unit in the Academy Award winning movie "Her." She doesn't seem to be slowing down either, with some early award season buzz for her eerie role in "Under the skin," Johansson will also hit the big screen late this year for her films, "Chef" and "Lucy." With a such a big name actresses, a popular character and a strong universe built around her, we really only have on question left. Why, on earth, have we not gotten a confirmation for a black widow movie? It's been talked about, for years, and still nothing.
It's no question that there is a large double standard for super hero films. It's mainly a male dominated genre, being that the only two female led super hero films were 2004's "Catwoman" and 2005's "Elektra," which were lackluster films at best and even earned Halle Berry a razzie award but, since neither of these films were career ending roles for Halle Berry or Jennifer Garner, I believe the films suffered largely due to the generic scripts. The largely underwhelming films have been used as an example why a film with a female lead, such as a Black Widow film, just wouldn't work but, there's one huge difference and that's the popularity of the Avengers franchise.
Johansson has come out in support of the film and the studio has heard from the fans about it for years. Most importantly, it seems like Marvel is willing to bet that any film, even for lesser known characters like Doctor Strange, Ant Man, and Guardians of the Galaxy, will still reel in the big bucks as other movies have in their franchises simply because they will tie in ultimately with the Avengers and will have the Marvel brand attached to them. Black Widow is one of the most physical and witty characters out of any of the marvel heroes and the best part about her having the possibility of a solo film is it opens the door to explore her past as a assassin, which has been teased in various scenes but never gone into detail. Of course, since Scarlett Johansson will once again reprise Black Widow in Avengers: Age of Ultron, it only makes sense to announce a sequel after the events in that film in order to keep with continuity. Hopefully, Marvel will step up to the plate and give this character the attention she truly deserves.
No one does console exclusives the way Nintendo does. Nintendo has just announced a new 32 GB Wii U for the highly anticipated Mario Kart 8 that includes a red steering wheel and red and blue controller. You'll also have a limited offer on downloading one of four free games for the Wii U virtual console if you register your copy of Mario Kart by July 31st of this year. The games being offered include, New Super Mario Bros. U, Wii Party U, Pikmin 3 or The Legend of Zelda: HD. The Mario Kart 8 Wii U bundle will be released May 30th for 330$.
One of cinemas greatest and most beloved franchises is set to make its return to theaters in December 2015 with it's 7th installment in the series. After months of rumors and Disney/Lucas Films officially dismantling the expanded Star Wars Universe, we finally got the news we were waiting for, the cast.
Returning to Star Wars episode 7 will be the big 6 from the original trilogy, Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia), Harrison Ford (Han Solo), Anthony Daniels (C-3P0), Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca) and Kenny Baker (R2D2) are returning to the sequel. Some of the new comes on the list are "Attack the Block's" John Boyega, Daisey Ridley, from the movie "Scrawl0," HBO "Girl's" Adam Driver, Golden Globe nominated actor, Oscar Issac from "Inside Llewyn Davis", Domhall Gleeson who portrayed Bill Weasley in the later Harry Potter films as well as starred along side Rachel McAdams in 2014's "About time," Max von Sydow known for the iconic role of Father Merrin in the Exorcist movie and finally Andy Serkis, accomplished motion capture artist and actor known for such roles as Golum in the Lord of the Rings/Hobbit films and Ceasar in "Rise of the Planet of the Apes." One can only speculate the rumor of the plot and whether this film will deal with the solo twins and what roles the new comers to the series will play. I'm sure we'll see more people being added to this already amazing cast as well as some surprises along the way. All in all, an exciting and surprising day in the Star Wars universe.
Nintendo is gearing up for a strong presence at this years E3. Having had one of the most anticipated games of the year, Nintendo will be showcasing the newest installment in the Super Smash Bros series along with a tournament for the new title. Expect to see both the Wii U and 3DS versions as well as a handful of other titles and game demos. There will also be a Nintendo Direct June 10th, which I hope gives us some information as to when we can expect to get our hands on the 3DS version of Super Smash Bros.
Gal Gadot had a few small movie roles before landing the character Gisele Yashar in the Fast and Furious franchise. After a failed attempt at creating a Wonder Woman series, (starring Adrianne Palicki) a cloud of doubt fell over the character making her big screen debut anytime soon but, Gadot, actress and model was confirmed in December 2013 to play the coveted role of Wonder Woman as well as being signed to a three picture deal which most likely includes Batman vs. Superman, The Justice League film and has left the question of her receiving a solo film for the character.
Note: The last female lead super hero film to feature a major release was Elektra in 2005 so it's long over due.
A relatively unknown actor who's name was also attached to the up-coming Star Wars films, Ray Fisher, has been cast as the role of Cyborg in Batman vs. Superman and the JL film. The teen titan regular is certainly an interesting choice for the team and it will be interesting to see what this newcomer will bring to the character and the movie.
Which brings us to our leads of the Man of Steel Sequel. Henry Cavill will be reprising his role as Superman while Batman will be played by Ben Affleck, which was met by a lot of criticism. While I have strong faith in Zack Snyder's abilities to direct, it certainly was interesting but we can only wait and see how he's going to stack up compared to the recent batman's prolific film run by Christian Bale.
So now that brings us to the final question, who's left? The role of aquaman seems to be most likely in the final Justice League roster. Will we see other famous characters like the Flash, Green Lantern or even Martian Man Hunter or maybe even more vintage heroes like Green Arrow and Hawkman? I'm sure there will be plenty of more news, rumors and casting details to come.
My earlier speculations were all but completely confirmed this morning when Warner Bro's Studios announced over the weekend that Zack Snyder (director of Man of Steel, Watchmen) would not only be directing the sequel to Man of Steel but the Justice League movie it self as well as the films being shot back to back. So it looks like a full fleshed Superman trilogy will be out of the picture and they're going to get as close to the Marvel powerhouse, The Avengers, as humanly possible. The Latino Review first broke the news of the a tentative release date in 2017, just a year after the Batman vs. Superman vs. Captain America 3 showdown in May 2016. The benefit of The Justice League movie being released in 2017 is it also won't have to compete with the Avengers 2 by a long shot, the currently rumored date of release for Avengers 3 however is 2019 but that may change. So now comes the fun part, who's going to make the final line up, who are we not going to see and who's going to be the main villain of what DC is hoping to be their biggest superhero movie.
One of the most popular new anime series is getting it's US debut on Toonami, May 3rd at 11:30. Attack on titan, which had been released in an on going manga format since 2010, received its anime in April, 2013 to rave reviews and a lot of praise. It's popularity quickly skyrocketed due to the series content, the memorable characters, larger than life titans and of course, the many many parodies of the very popular theme song. (seriously, they're quite a few fan videos) This is a series you don't want to miss and Attack on Titan is also available to stream on Netflix.
The Zack Snyder Superman reboot, Man of Steel, finally gave us the Superman film we deserved. With stylish graphics and a controversial ending, 2013's Man of Steel proved to be one of the most successful films that year, and one of the most successful super hero films of all time, also boasting the title of the second highest reboot ever. As we patiently wait for the forthcoming sequel, Batman vs. Superman, more and more news from the set leaks onto the internet and the movie sounds like it's moving in the direction of the Justice League but is it a little to soon?
In 2007, before the Amazing Spider-man Reboot, the original Spider-man trilogy ended it's run with Spider-man 3. The box office juggernaut was the highest selling movie of the trilogy and the highest grossing film for Sony/Columbia until Skyfall's release in 2012. Spider-man 3 was a largely popular film and end of Sam Rami's Spider-man Era, but it's still largely argued amongst fans as being the worst of the three films. In the end, it's down fall was ultimately led by the introduction of several villains, some that felt nearly unnecessary and crammed into the over the top action film, not to mention the now iconic evil Peter Parker dance sequence. The movie suffered from it's trio of antagonist, the new Green Goblin (Harry Osbourne played by James Franco played in the earlier films,) Flint Marko a.k.a. the Sandman and Venom infect both Peter and Eddie Brock, Peters rival journalist at the Daily Bugle. On paper, this sounds like a lot to juggle and unfortunately it was. Venom, a beloved comic book villain hardly got the screen time he deserved, basically being used as a fuel to set up Peter in this less than favorable and often laughable scenarios, Harry Osbourne is knocked unconscious early into the film and spends part of the movie in a amnesiac state until he later regains his memory and forces Mary Jane, who's relationship with Peter was strained by his change in behavior, to break up with Peter. The movie, while being financially successful, still received generally positive reviews but was ultimately held back from being a fantastic ending to a great franchise because of the introduction of too many villains.
It's no secret where DC wants to take the Super man film franchise and that leads to a potential problem. In Batman vs. Superman's case, we are being introduced to too many heroes. It was a shock when the sequel was announced featuring Ben Affleck as a re-cast Batman, after the finish of Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy only two years ago, but the addition of Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman and Ray Fisher as Cyborg leads a lot of fans to believe that DC is going to use the success of the Man of Steel to spring board their way to a Justice League movie in time for a the next Avengers sequel. The big difference is that Marvel has nearly a decade worth of films under their belt and Man of Steel was really the first major step towards building a strong DC presence after the lack luster Green Lantern film. With all of these additional characters, as well as Batman being in the title (which I'm sure will mean he will play a pivotal role) and Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor, we can only imagine just how influential the roles of Wonder Woman and Cyborg will be in the film. Will they be mere plot devices or secondary characters who will be stripped of their potential development?
The biggest potential threat however, comes from one soldier. The sequel to one of Marvels best reviewed and strongest franchises, Captain America 3, is set to open the same day as Batman vs. Superman. While this is still under dispute, I have no doubt in my mind both movies will make money, coming off of the record breaking debut that Captain America: The Winter Soldier had on April 4th, 2014, it's hard to imagine that the 3rd installment won't do equally as well if not even better. DC is playing a hard game and Marvel has been ahead of the curve for years now. The real question is, will the Man of Steel sequel receive the same praise as the first movie did or will it fall victim to the curse of too many characters?
With the first year of a brand new console cycle upon us, having both the PS4 and Xbox one out, we're looking forward to a slew of great and innovative new games being release this year, none more exciting than Watch Dogs, that debuted at E3 2012. The hyper futuristic story features a main character who's job is to hack the CtOS, a super computer that controls the entire city of Chicago and bring in questions of morality and who's watching who? Watch Dogs will be released on May 27th for both the PS 3 and 4, Xbox 360 and one and PC with a Wii U version announced and in development for later this year. A look at the game here.
Turtle Rock Studios, the game development team behind the wildly popular and addicting Left 4 Dead franchise return with their next title, Evolve. Evolve pits 4 co-op players against a 5th who controls an enormous monster who's abilities, and appearance, can change by devouring smaller creatures. Set in a jungle, Evolve teases twice the mayhem and thrill the Left 4 Dead games had. Evolve will be out this fall for the Ps4, Xbox One and PC. It also has one heck of a fun trailer.
On paper, Daylight sounds like a classic Stephen King novel. On a console, it sounds genius. Daylight is an upcoming zombie horror title that places you in a hospital armed with only a cell phone as your source of light and a map. The real mystery comes in with the fact that your only weapons in the game are flares and glow sticks. Daylight is out April 29th, for the PS4 and PC. To give you more of an idea of how the game play works, here is a video, courtesy of IGN, from 2013's E3.
Murdered Soul Suspect is another game thriller title being released this year. Published by Square enix, the game focuses on you playing a slain detective who's soul will not be at ease until you unravel the mystery behind your own murder. The game did find itself in a bit of hot water, being compared to an earlier release title in 2010 but the game looks incredible none the less. You can watch the trailer here. Murdered: Soul Suspect will be released on PS 3 and 4, Xbox 360 and Xbox one and the PC on June 3rd, 2014.