Things to Come by Ian Calcutt Starburst always has the hottest Sci-Fi news from around the world. Here's a dip into this month's stories
Compiled by Ian Calcutt Taken from Starburst #271

Ang Lee’s green destiny

Taiwanese director Ang Lee, who has amazed the world with the Oscar-bound Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, is the latest name to be connected with The Hulk movie.

Ang Lee on-set: Tai Chi not includedThe comicbook adaptation spent several months in limbo because Universal Pictures was concerned at its proposed $100m-plus budget. The script was revised and a slightly smaller budget fixed. Nevertheless, the script is still being tinkered with by David Hayter (X-Men).

If Ang Lee accepts the offer to direct, it will be his first big-budget Hollywood production and in sharp contrast to his usual low key fare such as Ice Storm and Sense and Sensibility. Ang is as mild-mannered as The Hulk’s own Bruce Banner (before the irradiated scientist turns green with anger) and the director confessed last year that he found the action scenes in Crouching Tiger arduous to shoot.

Hopeful producer Gale Anne Hurd (Terminator 2) told the Hollywood Reporter, “If you were to think who could bring this franchise to life and make it the best possible movie, I don’t think you could find a better director than Ang Lee...” According to Variety, The Hulk still has no-one to play Bruce Banner and no start date, so don’t get angry if it doesn’t burst out into cinemas until well into 2003.

Gish is new X-Files dish

Annabeth Gish and Robert PatrickAnnabeth Gish is to join The X–Files in a three-episode story arc which also sees the return of the missing Mulder and further revelations about Scully’s pregnancy.

This Isn’t Happening opens the arc on February 25 as Mulder’s return leads to Scully’s worst nightmare – in the form of Mulder’s funeral. To further drag out the tension, The X-Files then goes off the air for a month to make room for a high-profile launch for The Lone Gunmen spin-off, leaving fans facing a cliffhanger which is guaranteed to keep them on the edge of their seats until April 1 episode Deadalive reveals the horrific truth.

New recruit Gish’s character, finally dubbed Agent Monica Reyes as shooting began, is said to have a ‘history’ with Doggett who brings her onto the case... Unlike the other agents seen on the show, she is fairly open minded about the paranormal. The 29-year-old actress appeared in such films as Mystic Pizza, Nixon, The Last Supper, Beautiful Girls and Double Jeopardy. Gish may even return in Season Nine, although The X-Files’ future and whether a ninth season would star Duchovny and/or Gillian Anderson (or Patrick and Gish) is still to be decided...

The webmaster speaks

Spider-Man movie director Sam Raimi has succumbed to fan wishes (to an extent) by using a costume design - by Oscar-winner James Acheson - for Spidey which broadly matches the classic comicbook look. For a while there was talk of a bolder, contemporary reinvention of the outfit along the lines of The Matrix or X-Men movie.

“I’m not trying to put my mark on Spider-Man,” Raimi admitted to an LA press conference in January. “I’m just trying to bring Spider-Man to the screen. The audience has a great deal of expectations already in mind.”

Raimi has also acquired his supporting cast, who join Tobey Maguire’s lead, Kirsten Dunst’s Mary Jane, Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin and James Franco’s Harry Osborne... Among them, Raimi regular Bruce (Evil Dead) Campbell cameos as a ringmaster during Parker’s money-spinning fight with a wrestler.

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