The Shining Girls: Time Travelling Serial Killer Novel To Get TV Series Treatment

The Shining Girls
Well, here’s one hell of an idea: why not take time travel and marry it to a serial killer story? [*coughcoughTime After Timecough* – Ed.] That’s exactly what Lauren Beukes’ new novel The Shining Girls does. And if you don’t feel like reading the book when it hits bookstore shelves tomorrow, you may be able to watch it on television before too long.

According to the Hollywood Reporter Leonardo DiCarprio’s Appian Way and MRC are teaming up to develop the book into an episodic series. The story mixes historical fiction and sci-fi, telling the tale of a serial killer by the name of Harper Curtis.

In depression era Chicago, Curtis stumbles across as house that allows him to travel through time. How it does this remains to be seen — Does the house itself move from time to time? Are there various portals to the future and the past? — but in order to keep up the time jaunts, he is compelled to murder “shining girls,” young women full of talent, potential, and life. When one of his victims, Kirby Mazrachi, survives, she teams up with an ex-homicide reporter to track the killer down. You can’t help but imagine that there will be at least one scene of confusion as the intrepid sleuths discover seemingly identical murders decades apart.


Does It Matter If After Earth Is Or Isn’t A Scientology Film?

This past weekend drove yet another theoretical nail into the coffin of M. Night Shyamalan’s career, as his sci-fi adventure After Earth drew the ire of critics everywhere and took in only $27 million, which is the lowest opening for a Will Smith summer blockbuster in 20 years. There’s no doubt Shyamalan will keep on making movies, but I have serious doubts that his budgets are going to remain above $100 million. Unless of course the Scientologists are paying for it.

The Hollywood Reporter is responsible for one of the strangest film reviews I’ve seen in a while, allowing former Scientologist Mark Headley to give his take on After Earth. And guess what, you guys? He found a lot of Scientology in it! Holy shit! Now, I’ve read some of Headley’s stuff in the past, and he’s a highly intelligent guy who got roped into a strange group of believers, and he’s admirably spent his post-Scientology life trying to inform others of its bullshittiness. That said, why is this guy writing a movie review for a major publication that shouldn’t have any agendas behind anything it puts out to the public? Moreover, does what he says even matter?


Kevin Eastman Says Michael Bay Has Been Respectful With TMNT

Turtle Power!
With the Michael Bay-produced Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles currently in production in New York City, TMNT co-creator Kevin Eastman took the opportunity to address the fans’ concerns about the reboot film. One of the most controversial movies among fans, TMNT has seen its share of highs and lows since commencing development last year. TMNT fans are concerned that Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes production team are not taking the original source material as seriously as they should. Eastman says they shouldn’t be worried.

While at this year’s Phoenix Comicon in Arizona last weekend, Kevin Eastman said that the Turtles reboot will be something TMNT fans will love. Eastman continued to describe how Michael Bay and director Jonathan Liebesman are handling the TMNT mythology in the new film:

He’s (Michael Bay) been nothing but amazingly respectful, and Jonathan Liebesman’s been the director… I’ve seen the script. I’ve seen the design of the characters. It’s fantastic. The story has all the right turtle-isms. They’re in the sewers. I’m very excited to see the movie.


Ron Moore’s Outlander Adaptation Gets Series Order From Starz

OutlanderIt’s been quite a few years since Ron Moore (Battlestar Galactica) was able to bring sci-fi fans more than one project at a time. Being busy with two of the biggest franchises in the genre will do that. His quest to adapt Diana Gabaldon’s epic Outlander series for television has come to fruition, which I’m sure will rile some people up just as it will excite others. Moore’s work tends to polarize the population for some reason.

Starz showed interest in the project last year, and they have indeed given the Sony Pictures TV project the greenlight, with an order for 16 episodes. Apparently it was the award-winning Gabaldon herself who let the news slip at the Book Expo America 2013.

The Outlander series is far from just regular old science fiction, though, as the series mixes in elements of mystery, historical romance, and adventure as well. The story begins (for lack of a better word when dealing with time travel) with Claire, a married WWII combat nurse who is thrown back to the year 1743, stuck in the middle of the unknown, where her life is in danger. She is forced to marry Jamie, a young Scottish warrior, and Claire is torn between lovers from different ages, not knowing how her story will end. With the eighth novel in the series on the way — there was also a graphic novel, a couple of short stories, and The Outlandish Companion — Claire’s story has quite a way to go before it ends.


Will Smith Is Not Interested In Men In Black 4

Agent J

While Sony is currently developing Men in Black 4, it appears that one of the franchise’s stars doesn’t want to return for another installment. Will Smith, one-half of the Men in Black duo, recently said that he has no plans to reprise his role as Agent J in Men in Black 4.

In an interview with Collider, Will Smith said that it might be time for a younger cast to take up the mantle for the forthcoming Men in Black film. Smith says, “I think three is enough for me. Three of anything is enough for me. We’ll look at it and we’ll consider it, but it feels like that it might be time to let someone else do that.”

Of course, Will Smith made these statements before the release of After Earth, which is considered a box office bomb domestically. There’s no telling how well After Earth might do overseas, but if it underperforms internationally, I’m sure Will Smith might change his tune about appearing in a surefire hit like Men in Black 4.


Benicio Del Toro Joins Guardians Of The Galaxy

Benicio del Toro

As we creep closer to a late June production start on Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, it looks like the comic book movie studio and director James Gunn have landed another high-profile actor for the cosmic superhero movie. It’s been announced that Benicio Del Toro is joining the cast of Guardians of the Galaxy, although we don’t know who he’ll play just yet. Del Toro is the second major, award-winning actor to join the fourth installment in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe Phase Two. (He’ll join Glenn Close, who was confirmed for the movie last week.)

As reported on Deadline, Benicio Del Toro has signed a multi-picture deal with Marvel Studios, which means, whatever his role, it will stretch beyond just Guardians. Thanos maybe?

Benicio Del Toro won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Steven Soderbergh’s Traffic in the year 2000. Since the win, del Toro has appeared in Sin City, 21 Grams, and reunited with director Steven Soderbergh for the two-part film epic Che in 2008. Del Toro also famously turned down the role of John Harrison in J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek Into Darkness.