Today marks a milestone for fans of the Jurassic Park film series. With over a decade of no releases, Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow has taken to Twitter, letting fans know that the next installment has finished filming. Like J.J. Abrams with Star Wars, Trevorrow’s updates always contain overt teases. It seems that the final slate has found itself in the familiar jaws of a certain royal creature.
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The annual San Diego Comic-Con kicks off in a few days, and as always, film studios are eager to tease the surprises to come. Many know that Comic-Con is home to many exclusive collectables from every artist and franchise imaginable. Today, this was proven true for yet another famous film series. That’s right, after over a decade of no releases, Universal is beginning to open the advertising floodgates for the fourth installment in the Jurassic Park franchise, Jurassic World.
The Ape-pire Strikes Back
In 2011, audiences were shocked upon seeing the surprisingly-great re-imagining, Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Director Rupert Wyatt, and screenwriters/married couple Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, delivered a well-conceived story that paid homage to original five-film series throughout. Andy Serkis’ portrayal of Caesar, the leader of the apes, quickly garnered overwhelming praise for its subtlety and believability. By all means, no one expected such a great, modern film with an old, rather ridiculous premise. However, despite little marketing compared to other summer blockbusters, Rise surprised us all with its characters and heart.
Scheduled for release on May 6, 2016, Warner Bros.’ first major expansion into a shared cinematic universe will arrive in theaters. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will continue the story began in 2013’s Man of Steel. Unlike most superhero sequels, which seem to be stand-alone narratives with loose ties to one another, this chapter appears to be forming a single, long tale that will affect future films and result from the actions taken in its prequel. The primary title reveals the obvious: Batman and Superman, played by Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill, will appear. Not as readily noticeable for the less-informed is the fact that Wonder Woman, played by Gal Gadot, will also feature. The subtitle implies that the formation of the Justice League will be the culmination of this film’s plot. This may lead some to worry that the film’s ambition and large cast will weigh it down and not provide its individual characters with their fair due. However, this worry seems to only be present within superhero franchises. After the success of Marvel’s plan to introduce characters in their own individual films and then gather them together in one mega-blockbuster, the masses seem to say that DC has to take the exact same approach. Of course, if DC were to do this, many would decry them for unoriginality and “copying” Marvel. When non-superhero movies are announced with impressively-sized ensemble casts, no one ever hears, “This movie is too bloated, there is no way I will be able to learn about these characters and care about them before the final act.” Imagine this, “BvS” (as it is understandably being called) aims to tell a HUGE story with larger than life characters. This is just speculation now, but it seems entirely likely, based on the scale of the mythology and the amount of characters present, that this film could be longer than the standard 2-2.5 hour affair. When audiences sat down to watch The Fellowship of the Ring, they seemed to accept and attach themselves to its sprawling cast, even beyond the first nine characters denoted in the word “fellowship.” Before the movie even ends, two members of the fellowship are emotionally removed from the party. These sequences are well-known and beloved for their impact and performances. This duo, Gandalf and Boromir, are only two out of at least fifteen major characters that share screen time. Can the argument then not be made that, with good writing and performances, we might find ourselves attached to DC’s trinity and their supporting characters by the time the credits roll?