Things to Come by Ian Calcutt Starburst always has the latest Sci-Fi news. Here's a quick burst of this month's stories
selected from Starburst #259

Raimi Swings In

Even those with the most tingly spider-sense couldn’t have foreseen Sam Raimi’s dramatic entrance into the scramble to direct the long-awaited movie version of Spider-Man. He's a popular, non-controversial choice but, on the face of it, almost ideal. With Raimi all but sitting in the Spider-Man director’s chair, thoughts are turning to casting.

Sam Raimi and some mooted contenders for the webslinger The various names (with varying degrees of believability) being tipped to play Peter Parker include:
Buffy’s Nicholas Brendon
Rushmore’s Jason Schwartzman
American Beauty’s Wes Bentley.
Alternatively, up the age range a little:

Brendan Fraser (The Mummy) and
John C Reilly (Boogie Nights, The Thin Red Line).

So, what next for two of the Spider-Man also-rans? With the about-turn on the webslinger, David Fincher is set to film Passengers, a kind of ‘Fight Club meets Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ based on a novel by Robert Silverberg. In the story, non-corporeal aliens take over the bodies of humans for three-day ‘joy rides’ of sex, violence and thrills. If there are any Jan De Bont fans left, don’t fret, his next project is likely to be Dust, an apocalyptic disaster movie based on a novel by Charles Pelligrino – the scientist whose cloning theories are said to have inspired Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park. The plot concerns clouds of dust that wipe out whole towns and may signify a worldwide ‘extinction cycle’.

Matrix Goes Animé?

Any Matrix fans who were expecting at least one of the two new films to fill in more of the backstory were undoubtedly surprised to hear that the new productions are both sequels. However, producer Joel Silver revealed recently that an animated prequel is possible. This could detail the story of what happened between 1999 and the events in the first film. Given that the Wachowski brothers are self-confessed admirers of Japanese animation, notably Akira, expect any such film to follow that style.

Princess of Darkness

Bedazzling: Liz HurleyHarold Ramis’s “wild, broad” re-make of the devilish 1960s comedy Bedazzled (see last issue’s news) will now star Elizabeth Hurley – as well as the previously announced Brendan Fraser – in Peter Cook and Dudley Moore’s old roles. Yes, you read that correctly, Hurley (of Austin Powers fame), will portray the Devil (as brought to life by Cook in the 1967 Stanley Donen movie).

Ramis told the Toronto Sun, “I thought it was a good image for the turn of the century, what with the empowerment of women. It was actually my wife’s idea. She said, ‘Could the Devil be a woman?’ And I thought it makes total sense. It’s an oddly romantic role. A lot of powerful women wanted to play the Devil.”

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Feature © Visual Imagination 2000. Not for reproduction
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