M. Night Shyamalan says ‘Airbender’ rises above race issues: ‘That’s what’s so beautiful about anime’

by Geoff Boucher at The L.A. Times
M. Night Shyamalan has a massive plan in mind for “The Last Airbender” — a patient film trilogy that presents a fantasy epic and also grows progressively darker as its young characters (and actors) mature in front of moviegoers.

That brings to mind both “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy and the “Harry Potter” franchise, and, as you might imagine, that has stirred excitement among executives at Paramount Pictures who would love to have a magical franchise that pulls in billions of dollars at the box office. But because the stakes are so high, there has also been considerable behind-the-scenes hand-wringing because of a nasty fan backlash on a touchy subject — race and casting.

Here’s how one reader summed it up: “I am one of the many who is seriously disappointed that characters who are non-white have been cast with white actors. Only the villain is allowed to be played by a person of color. I expected better of Mr. Shyamalan.”

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First look: Hot new Resident Evil: Afterlife pics!

By Patrick Lee at Sci Fi Wire

MySpace has posted several new images from the upcoming 3-D sci-fi movie Resident Evil: Afterlife, featuring the smokin’ hot Milla Jovovich, below.


The images also show Ali Larter as Claire Redfield, as well as a taste of the upcoming high-tech look of the game-based movie. There’s a hint of the 3-D, which we can tell you from having been on set last year will be awesome.

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First look at Ridley Scott’s Forever War Movie

by Quiet Earth at io9
Is this really the first piece of concept art from Ridley Scott’s movie of Joe Haldeman’s The Forever War?

This piece of concept art comes to us from long-time movie illustrator Steve Simmons who has done art for a ton of movies including the upcoming Timeless and the Neil Marshall produced horror flick The Ghosts of Slaughterford.

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Stephenie Meyer’s ‘The Host’ Could Begin Filming Next Year

By Christoper Campbell at MTV News
With the film installments of her “Twilight” novels not yet fully completed, Stephenie Meyer is already well into the development of her next film franchise. According to, the adaptation of the author’s first adult novel, “The Host,” could go before cameras as early as next year.

Although financing is not yet in place and no definite shooting schedule is planned for the sci-fi/horror hybrid, producer Steve Schwartz divulged that “Truman Show” Oscar-nominee Andrew Niccol is currently working on his third draft of the screenplay, with the author’s close involvement. Niccol is also signed on to direct the film.

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Alex Pettyfer: I Am Number Four!

via Just Jared
Alex Pettyfer has landed the lead in I Am Number Four, a forthcoming adaptation of a sci-fi book by James Frey and Jobie Hughes!

The 19-year-old British actor will play the title character in the story of nine aliens “who have escaped their home planet just before it was annihilated by a rival species,” according to THR.

Michael Bay and Steven Spielberg are producing. This is Alex’s first major studio movie!!

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I’m  honestly not familiar with The Last Airbender anime, but I’m surprised they weren’t more picky about casting. I know it has a large fanbase, and with a movie like that you would think they would go for people as close to the original characters as they could. Shyamalan talks about making the characters ambiguous, and his daughter looks like one of the characters. But I would think that since people of color playing really awesome roles still isn’t the norm, that he would want to make sure he stays true to that for his daughter. It’s a really good message, but it’s hard to take him seriously with a mostly white cast. And I really hope the story about The Forever War movie isn’t an April Fool’s joke. I’d be really ticked off. Ridley Scott directing that would be awesome.

What do you think of the new Resident Evil pictures? Are you looking forward to The Host movie?