Exclusive: BLADE spin-off in the works (Mania.com)

By:Rob M. Worley
Date: Monday, July 06, 2009
Source: Various

We've got the exclusive word on the planned 'Blade' spin-off. PLUS: 'Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen' box office and 'Watchmen' Blu-Ray. Easing in, after the long weekend, it's your Comics2Film 9.7.6!





TRANSFORMERS Box Office Update

Elsewhere on Mania.com you'll find news of an improbable scenario at the box office over the long holiday weekend: a tie! 

Paramount/DreamWork's Returning champ 'Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen' earned pretty much the same money as Fox's newly opening 'Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs'. Both studios are claiming an estimated earnings of $42.5 million. A slight edge has to be given to the Fox sequel, as it ran on 200 fewer screens.

Of course those are studio estimates. We'll see how the actual figures look later today.

The tally for 'Transformers' represents a 61% drop in audience share, which is fairly typical for a blockbuster that did a massive opening week.

Below are some milestones 'Transformers' reached (courtesy of Box Office Mojo). The movie now ranks...

...#31 on the All-Time Domestic
...#46 on the All-Time Worldwisde
...#10 on the Best Independence Day weekend
...#1 on the list of 2009 (topping 'Up' by about $30 million)



Snyder talks WATCHMEN Blu-Ray

SCI FI Wire had an exclusive chat with 'Watchmen' director Zack Snyder, who talked about the upcoming Blu-Ray release of his comic epic on July 21st.

Included on the new version are cut scenes (like the death of Hollis Mason, the newstand kid reading 'Tales of the Black Freighter', and Snyder's cameo), as well as the recently previewed Maximum Movie Mode in which Snyder will appear on-screen at 12 points in the movie to illustrate points while the film runs behind him.

However, Snyder's 3:10 minute cut of the film isn't the final cut that will be released. This version does not integrate the animated 'Tales of the Black Freighter' movie as previously expected. That cut of the movie will be held for a future release.



Norrtngton, Dorff plan BLADE Spin-Off

1998's 'Blade' holds an important place in the history books of comic-based movies. The movie, which starred Wesley Snipes as the half-vampire hero,  was the movie that put Marvel on the map as a viable player in Hollywood by demonstrating that a movie based on one of their comics needn't be terrible. It also put director Stephen Norringon on the radar as a mainstream director.

Well, in the 11 years since its release, the 'Blade' franchise has cooled with a poor third installment fizzling in 2004 and a made-for-cable TV series that failed to find an audience in 2006.

Likewise, Norrington's rep has diminished. He followed the breakout Marvel movie with an obscure foreign film 'The Last Minute' and then the critically-panned Hollywood misfire 'The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen' in 2003. As a director he's been quiet since after an experience which reportedly demoralized him.

Now Norrington  told Comics2Film at Mania.com exclusively that he is planning a return to the 'Blade' franchise following his work on the new reinvention of 'The Crow'.

His leading man of choice is Stephen Dorff, who co-starred as the megalomaniacal Deacon Frost in the film. Of course, Frost apparently died at the end of the first movie as Blade cut him down just as he was about to transform into a vampire god.

Dorff told UK's The Sunday Mail that the new movie would be "a prequel to the Blade movies, Deacon's story. It's a new trilogy the director has created. It will [be] cool."

Norrington confirmed the news although said the movie is "not exactly how the article describes but close."

The director credits Dorff with coming up with the idea for the new project, which "has evolved into a very interesting story." 

While that evolution may have carried it away from the source material, Norrington tells us the film is definitely envisioned as part of the existing mythology. "The linkage to 'Blade' is still big in the equation."

Presently Dorff is occupied filming Sofia Coppola's 'Somewhere'. Earlier this year, the actor starred in the comic-based TV mini-series 'XIII'. He can be seen on screen now in 'Public Enemies'.

Norrington's attention is focused on 'The Crow', so the purported 'Blade' spinoff would be several years away.

Thanks to "M" for putting us on the trail.



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Series: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Watchmen, Blade 4, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Watchmen: Tales of the Black Freighter