Sunday, August 25, 2013

NEWS UPDATE: The Expendables 3, Stephen King's The Stand, Rambo, Act of Valor 2

The Expendables Sylvester Stallone

Lionsgate has announced that "The Expendables 3" has commenced principal photography in Bulgaria through an official press release which also offers some definitive details about the production. As previously announced, Mel Gibson will star as the villain, an old partner of Barney Ross' (Sylvester Stallone) who seeks revenge. The press release also confirms the presence of franchise newcomers Wesley Snipes, Antonio Banderas, Harrison Ford, Kellan Lutz, Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz and Ronda Rousey. But, there's no mention of other big names like Nicolas Cage, Jackie Chan, Milla Jovovich and Mickey Rourke, who were reported to be on board. Anyway, "The Expendables 3" opens on August 15, 2014. Until then, here is the official press release:
"SANTA MONICA, CA (August 19, 2013) – Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF) and Millennium Films will begin principal photography today on THE EXPENDABLES 3, the third installment of THE EXPENDABLES action-thriller franchise, with production shooting on location in Bulgaria and at Nu Boyana Studios in Sofia.

THE EXPENDABLES 3 will feature Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews and Arnold Schwarzenegger returning to their roles in the first two films with Wesley Snipes, Antonio Banderas, Mel Gibson and Harrison Ford joining the all-star cast along with Kellan Lutz, MMA star Ronda Rousey, welterweight boxing champion Victor Ortiz and Glen Powell.

Patrick Hughes (RED HILL) will direct the film, with veteran Dan Bradley (The BOURNE franchise; MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL, QUANTUM OF SOLACE) directing the second unit. THE EXPENDABLES 3 is written by Creighton Rothenberger & Katrin Benedikt, who previously teamed on OLYMPUS HAS FALLEN, and Sylvester Stallone. Avi Lerner, Kevin King-Templeton, Danny Lerner and Les Weldon are producing THE EXPENDABLES 3. Trevor Short, Boaz Davidson and John Thompson are executive producing. Lionsgate will release THE EXPENDABLES 3 in North America and the UK on August 15, 2014.

In THE EXPENDABLES 3, Barney (Stallone), Christmas (Statham) and the rest of the team comes face-to-face with Conrad Stonebanks (Gibson), who years ago co-founded The Expendables with Barney. Stonebanks subsequently became a ruthless arms trader and someone who Barney was forced to kill… or so he thought. Stonebanks, who eluded death once before, now is making it his mission to end The Expendables — but Barney has other plans. Barney decides that he has to fight old blood with new blood, and brings in a new era of Expendables team members, recruiting individuals who are younger, faster and more tech-savvy. The latest mission becomes a clash of classic old-school style versus high-tech expertise in the Expendables’ most personal battle yet.

The production will be overseen by Lionsgate’s Jason Constantine and Eda Kowan.

The first two installments of THE EXPENDABLES have grossed nearly $600 million in combined global box office."

"Crazy Heart" director Scott Cooper will replace Ben Affleck as the writer and director of the big screen adaptation of Stephen King's "The Stand". Affleck was forced to drop out after Warner Bros. announced that he would star as Batman in the upcoming "Man of Steel" sequel. The feature film adaptation has been in production for over two years. At one point, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" director David Yates was interested in taking over the project. King's novel has been adapted once before in 1994 as a TV mini-series. This is probably one of the major issues that the big screen version must overcome: the length. Read a review of the TV movie here.

Rambo lives again. Although rumors about a fifth movie in the franchise have been floating around since 2008's "Rambo", it seems that the fierce warrior will return in a TV series which will be produced by Entertainment One and Nu Image. Sylvester Stallone will not be involved in this new series according to his reps:
"While a television series based on the Rambo property is in development with Entertainment One and Nu Image, contrary to reports, Sylvester Stallone will certainly not reprise his role as the iconic John Rambo for the small screen."

Last year's surprise-hit action film "Act of Valor" will get a sequel. The new film will focus on a team of elite SWAT officers. Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh will return to produce the sequel and Scott Wiper ("The Condemned") will write and direct. It's safe to assume that "Act of Valor 2" will continue the trend set by the first film of casting real-life operatives and shoot in a realistic manner.


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