Category Archives: Cast

There’s Still Time To Fix the Dark Universe

The Mummy is a very problematic film. It’s trying to be way too many things, and none of those things are what the film needs to be or should be. I get that Universal is trying to set up a Cinematic Universe, so they’re building a world, and using this film to do it. But the one thing they don’t get is that these Monsters aren’t superheroes.

When it was first announced that they were working on resurrecting their stable of classic monster films, with big names attached no less, I was excited. I grew up on the classics. Then trailers started rolling out and they looked exactly like the big budget action films they’re patterning the cinematic universe after. That’s not a knock on the MCU or the DCEU or Fox’s X-MenCU. They’re great, and they usually work for what they are. But that’s because the films fit the genre. The topics fit the genre. But we don’t need another big, loud, action-packed franchise/cinematic universe. We’ve got Avengers, Justice League, Star Wars, Transformers, Fast & Furious, and a handful of others.

What the audiance needs, what The Mummy needed to be, what the Dark Universe needs to be… is a horror franchise. A horror universe. These are monster/horror films. They don’t need to be action blockbuster tentpoles. They can be high budget horror films (which in that genre is really anything north of $5 million). These monsters, The Mummy, Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, Dracula, Wolfman, Creature From The Black Lagoon… they are the genesis for horror cinema. Don’t remove them from horror, and don’t remove horror from them.

What could Universal do with that? Dominate the fall. Just own October. Disney’s releasing a Star War every Christmas. Marvel & DC are duking it out in the summer. Just release a monster movie every Halloween. That could be THEIR thing.

Hell… follow in the Marvel/Lucasfilm footsteps of bringing in an indie/auteur director who made some waves to bring a unique eye to your films. Indie horror is huge right now. Get a horror filmmaker, one who’s had a hit over the past few years, have them conceive your film. Jennifer Kent (The Babadook), Robert Eggers (The Witch), Trey Edward Shults (It Comes At Night), David Robert Mitchell (It Follows), Mike Flanagan (Hush), Fede Alvaraz (Don’t Breathe), Adam Winegard (You’re Next, The Guest), Anne Billar (The Love Witch), or go foreign for some added flare, like Julia Ducournau (Raw) from France or Sang-Ho Yeon (Train to Busan) from South Korea. All of them could bring something to the table to make these insanely good films that people would want to watch. Get them all together, say “This is our grand design for the franchise, drive your films toward it, but how you get there is up to you.” Then let the artists work.

Treat it like a horror franchise. Not an action franchise. Universal already has one in Fast & Furious. Horror is notoriously low risk/high reward (for studios, anyway). They could easily spend a modest $50 million (modest for studios), get a good cast and crew together, make some bank at the box office. And have themselves a nice tidy franchise on your hands.

Back to The Mummy, I felt like Sofia Boutella was the only one who understood that it was a horror film. She was operating and performing at a different level. She got it. It’s just too bad no one else did. Everyone was making a boring action movie with no discernable sense of direction. She made a monster-horror film. So Universal… please, I beg you… take a cue from Boutella. Make these as horror films. You’ll make some money, and the audience will dig it.

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Casting the Lost Movie

As some of you know, I’m a big fan of the television program Lost. I love it, watch it religiously blah blah blah. Recently I began rewatching the first two seasons in prep for the fourth season premiere in February (the third season DVD release is something I’m eagerly awaiting). And with recent news that they are ending it after the 6th season, with the next three seasons being shortened to 16 episode seasons (as opposed to the standard 22 episodes in a season), I got to thinking how they would end it. I was thinking maybe leave the series finale open ended, and then wrap it up with a movie, just to milk it a little longer. It could happen.

And that got me even more curious. What if they made a Lost movie? Well, obviously they’d cast the TV actors, which would make this blog posting absolutely no fun. So, I specified it. What if in the Lost universe, they made a movie about the castaways? A film with in a show. Sort of like in the second two Scream flicks they had the Stab movies where Luke Wilson was Skeet Ulrich. Anyway… Who would play the Lost castaways in the Lost universe story of the castaways.

Now keep in mind, the flashbacks would not come into play. That’s something we as an audience are privy to, but not the other castaways, and not the producers of said movie. Plus it’s just the story of them on the island, not their lives before it. So the whole, Boone/Shannon thing, they wouldn’t know about that. So my casting for those roles isn’t that crazy, considering they wouldn’t play it like Boone and Shannon we know.

So here it is, my cast list for the Lost movie within the show…

Jack Shepard- Robert Downey, Jr.- He’s been experiencing a career renaissance lately, and a good juicy dramatic role would be the perfect role for him to take. Plus he tends to play characters with alcohol problems, what with his personal experiences to draw from.

Kate Austin- Rosario Dawson- Has been a go-to leading lady for former indie directors (Quentin Tarantino, Kevin Smith, Robert Rodriguez and Spike Lee have all used her), and could use this as a springboard into full-time leading lady status. Plus her combination girl next door charm and sexy edge would make her right for Kate, if she can pull off that air of mystery.

James “Sawyer” Ford- Ryan Gosling- After playing mostly good guys, or generally likable characters, he would definitely mix it up by playing an anti-hero.

John Locke- David Morse- He’s intense. And he’s got that, wise older man aura about him.

Charlie Pace- Ben Foster- Ben Foster has made a name for himself for picking his scripts and playing unconventional characters, so a drugged out fading rockstar would be right up his alley. Plus he can show off an accent.

Hugo “Hurley” Reyes- Horatio Sanz- Let’s face it, he’s comic relief. And they’d go with a comic for him.

Sayid Jarrah- Omar Metwally- He’s an intense, serious looking actor of Middle Eastern descent, and would be good to play a jaded war vet.

Claire Littleton- Bryce Dallas Howard- You want a young damsel in distress? Look no further than Howard.

Jin Kwon- Daniel Day Kim

Sun Kwon- Yunjin Kim- These two, I just had to go with the actors from the show, because quite frankly it was hard enough to find Korean-American actors who speak fluent Korean when they were casting the show in real life, do you think they’re gonna have it any easier in fictional Hollywood that’s still somewhat grounded in reality? Of course not. So it makes sense they’d pick two, and it’s entirely within the realm of possibility they’d cast these two.

Michael Dawson-Courtney B. Vance- I think he’s got the right intensity to him to play the role of a distraught father.

Shannon Rutherford- Maggie Gyllenhaal

Boone Carlyle- Jake Gyllenhaal- Brother/Sister acting duo playing brother/sister on screen. Makes sense. Again, the flashback scenes would not be part of the castaway’s movie, so that subplot would not be known to anyone.

Ben Linus- Paul Giamatti- He can do the evil genius.

Mr. Eko- Djimon Hunsou- Do I really need to explain this one? African character, meet African actor.

Desmond Hume- Gerard Butler- It’s certainly different than any character he’s played in the past. I think Gerard Butler would take it.

Ana-Lucia Cortez- Michelle Rodriguez- Again went with the show’s casting on this one, but Michelle Rodriguez has long been Hollywood’s go-to tough chick.

Tom Friendly- M.C. Gainey- Again it’s the show’s actor, but he’s such a prolific character actor, and I can’t think of anyone else for the role.

Juliet Burke- Sabrina Lloyd- I can’t think of a good reason why I went with her. But she just seems to fit, to me anyway.

Danielle Rousseau- Juliette Binoche- Hey, she’s French. That’s good enough for a casting director.