Thursday, March 13, 2014

Bits Journal #8

Delayed sets, more cars and superhero stuff...

Jerry Beck on Stu's Show

Animation historian Jerry Beck appeared on Stu's Show again, and he updated us on the whole Warner Bros./Tom & Jerry Golden Collection Volume Two fiasco. He said that it's possible that we may get the set with those two controversial shorts (Mouse Cleaning and Casanova Cat), and he did state that the set was in fact completed. However, I wouldn't get my hopes up. Warner Bros.' legal department, or more specifically one lawyer there who has something against those two shorts, is the force blocking them from giving us the complete Volume Two. Always was from the start, so again… Probably a pipe dream.

At this rate, I'll just take the set without the two cartoons rather than nothing at all. I don't want to back down to censorship, neither do others, but I'm afraid we've all done our part by ranting, posting reviews on Amazon and getting the word out.

As for the Tex Avery collection, that may or may not come. Beck talked about the state of physical home media to Stu (if I can recall correctly, I think he said it may be released through The Archive), and also how many studios don't realize what they have on their hands. (Disney included, where are the classic shorts and TV shows??) Some of these distributors see those old cartoons as nothing more than babysitters, which is why they either don't go through the trouble of giving them a proper release or giving them a complete restoration.

No word on anything else other than the undetermined Looney Tunes Platinum Collection Volume 3. Beck only knows a couple of what shorts will included. Physical media, I believe, isn't leaving anytime soon, not with Sony/Panasonic's 300GB disc format coming. Hopefully we get these classics in some form, whether it's digital or physical. WB still ought to release what they have left…

Today, we got a little batch of animation news… First up…

More Cars Toons

At last summer's D23, Pixar announced the names of two upcoming Cars shorts: Radiator Springs 500 1/2 and To Protect and Serve. Well, we got some info on the former… And two images!

Radiator Springs 500 1/2 will be about the gang putting together an occasion for a day dedicated to Radiator Springs' founder (Stanley, of course), but a bunch of Baja racers - in a Western-like manner - crash into town and challenge Lighting McQueen to a race. Director Rob Gibbs said…

“We kind of played it up like a western. These off-road racers come to town, like gunslingers looking for the hottest gunslinger in Radiator Springs, Lightning McQueen. They challenge him to a race, like someone would challenge someone to a duel.”

Meanwhile, Mater takes the rest of the gang on a tour of the town. I'm happy to see that this one won't be a Mater Tall Tale, or completely Mater-centric. I was kind of hoping that this would be about McQueen racing with the World Grand Prix competitors from Cars 2, but new racers are fine. I like how they're gonna take on off-road racing with this one, so color me excited. This is the way to keep the franchise going, rather than another movie. (But you know they'll make it anyways, because… Money.)

This is meant to launch a series called Tales of Radiator Springs. The short, and subsequent episodes, will debut on Disney's new app Disney Movies Anywhere. I hope it's a fun one!

Speaking of TV shows being used to build franchises…

The Safety Net

DreamWorks continues to expand. They announced three new series for Netflix, probably due to the success of Turbo F.A.S.T. (Turbo itself premieres on Netflix tomorrow)…

We're getting King Julien, Puss in Boots and… Believe it or not, Veggie Tales.

The King Julien series should be funny, since he's one of the best things from the Madagascar franchise. Puss in Boots: The Series, I guess, will replace the announced Puss in Boots movie sequel. Or maybe they'll use it to see what the character's longevity outside of the Shrek films so they can make a sequel in the future. (Jeffrey Katzenberg hinted at Shrek 5, after all.)

DreamWorks owns the rights to Veggie Tales, and I guess that franchise still makes a lot money. I mean, why else would that be one of their upcoming Netflix series? What happened to the rumored Croods series? You'd think they would get to that first, but the fact that Veggie Tales is happening indicates that DreamWorks might be giving us a lot of shows based on what they own. (Classic Media stuff, etc.) That means we could see new shows based on stuff like Rocky & Bullwinkle, Voltron, Casper and several other things they happen to own.

As for the Rocky & Bullwinkle short not showing up before Mr. Peabody & Sherman, Jerry Beck talked about that on Stu's Show. Hopefully it's attached to something in theaters, or released on the Blu-ray/DVD.

Superhero Stuff

Rumors are making the rounds… Warner Bros. is looking to move Batman vs. Superman (give it a damn title already) out of its current spot: May 6, 2016.

Of course, as you may know, Marvel had picked that date first for a currently untitled Phase 3 film. Kevin Feige during the press junket for Captain America: The Winter Soldier said that Marvel is not going to move their film, so it makes sense that rumors are beginning to trickle out. Logically, Warner Bros. should move this big event to their usual mid-to-late July spot. July 22, 2016 would be great, but then Marvel would have to move their July 8, 2016 film. I can see this compromise happening, Marvel moves the second 2016 film to either August or November.

Who knows what will happen, but someone is backing down, and I think it's going to be Warner Bros.

As for what comes from Marvel in May 2016, well… Going by a recent Screen Rant post and some details… Captain America 3.

Apparently The Winter Soldier is that good (PJ, who saw it, tells me it's the best Marvel film to date), so maybe Marvel feels that it'll outgross Thor: The Dark World by a considerable margin. With that, they'd probably want Captain America 3 first, rather than Thor 3. The film's directors, Anthony and Joe Russo, have confirmed that they will direct Cap's third outing and that filming might begin next year. If Cap is indeed filmed in 2015, that means Captain America 3 might be that May 2016 release.

If Marvel were to announce that, that would make WB/DC quiver in their red and black boots.

Screen Rant's article suggests that the slate might look like this…

Captain America 3 - May 6, 2016
Doctor Strange - July 8, 2016
Thor 3 - May 5, 2017
The Inhumans - 2017

Update: So it's actually happening...

What do you think?

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