With Marvel’s The Avengers already launching its assault upon the global box office and both Sony’s The Amazing Spider-Man and Warner Bros.’ The Dark Knight Rises sure to rake in the cash this summer, rivals Fox are naturally keen to capitalise on the superhero boom with their own stock of comic book properties and CEO Tom Rothman has taken the opportunity to discuss several of the studio’s potential projects this past week.
First up comes The Wolverine, which is finally set to begin filming this year under director James Mangold (3:10 to Yuma) ahead of a planned release date of July 26th, 2013. Speaking to MTV News, Rothman revealed that location shooting will still take place in Japan despite the recent announcement about the production being based in Australia, as well as commenting on star Hugh Jackman’s hopes for his next outing as the adamantium-clawed mutant: “I can just tell you on behalf of him, his goal is to make the ultimate, bad-ass, berserker rage Wolverine.”
The Wolverine isn’t the only X-Men project on the horizon; as well as the long-rumoured Deadpool solo movie, Rothman has hinted at the possibility of a spin-off centred on the New Mutants, while director Matthew Vaughn and stars James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and Jennifer Lawrence are also confirmed as returning for the as-yet-untitled sequel to X-Men: First Class. “We’re going to start shooting in January 2013 for either Christmas 2013, or Summer 2014,” said Rothman on the current plans for First Class 2. “The script is in development now. Matt [Vaughn], Simon Kinberg and Jane Goldman are working on it now.”
Looking beyond the X-Men universe, Fox are also busy developing a sequel to this year’s low-budget hit Chronicle, with Rothman telling Collider that “[Chronicle 2] is in very active development. I think you’ll see that sooner rather than later.” There had of course been plenty of speculation that director Josh Trank would follow up his found-footage debut by taking on the reins of the studio’s Fantastic Four reboot and now Rothman has announced that Trank is officially attached to Marvel’s first family: “Josh Trank who did Chronicle, I think this has been reported, is gonna come on and work on a take, or a vision, that he has for it, so we’re very excited about that… I think there’s a possibility of [him directing]. I mean he’s gonna develop it now, and then it depends on the script.”
Finally, although Rothman has stated that Fox’s Daredevil reboot is “in development”, it may be some time before we get to see the Man Without Fear on screen again. Just last week we heard that director David Slade (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse) is now focusing his energies on the upcoming Hannibal TV series, and according to Latino Review’s elmayimbe, the reason progress has stalled is down to severe problems with Brad Caleb Kane’s (Fringe) screenplay: “The script for Daredevil is wack. So wack that guess what kids, it’s now an open writing assignment! They’re looking for a new writer.”
UPDATE – According to Deadline, the studio has since found a new writer for Daredevil in David James Kelly (who previously worked on the abandoned live-action Akira), and have reportedly renewed their option on the character.