This Week:

Gravity is headed back to theaters; Paul Blart: Mall Cop is getting a sequel; Joe Johnston may take on an alien invasion film; Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu will not direct WB’s The Jungle Book; and Universal acquires the rights to a Nazi-fighting werewolf movie.

One of last year’s biggest hits, Gravity, is headed back to theaters for a limited-time, awards season run starting on January 17th.

Although the details of the re-release (theater count, duration, etc.) are not known, The Wrap claims it will be more robust than your average limited run. This re-release is likely a response to Gravity‘s growing awards show buzz, especially with regards to its technical achievements. Just how technically impressive is the film? Well, take a look at the recently released “From Script to Screen” featurette and see for yourself:

Although the re-release was announced prior to the Golden Globes, the Best Director win for Cuaron last night will help encourage box office sales. The film should also nab a few Oscar nominations this Thursday, which will be further incentive to make a trip to the movies next weekend.

And while these limited runs are typically focused on bumping up revenue, in Gravity‘s case the situation is a little different. This is a film that’s best experienced on the biggest screen possible, a sentiment you’ve likely heard the Screen Rant Underground team say time and time again.

Source: The Wrap

Sony has announced Paul Blart: Mall Cop will return for a forthcoming sequel.

The 2009 comedy was a surprise hit with audiences, pulling in $146 million during its theatrical run. We say surprise hit because most critics panned the film, but general audiences didn’t seem to mind.

Details regarding the sequel are relatively slim at this point, but we know Kevin James is on-board. The film’s original director Steve Carr, however, will not return. Andy Fickman (Parental Guidance, You Again) will take his place.

Source: THR

Captain America: The First Avenger director Joe Johnston is in talks to direct the forthcoming action film Extinction.

Although the film’s plot is a closely guarded secret, it reportedly follows a father’s attempts to survive an alien invasion. It’s certainly not a unique premise by any means, but one that could work in the right hands.

As far as Johnston is concerned, the director has helmed his fair share of cult hits over the years, including Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, Jumanji, and The Rocketeer, and has shown a keen eye for spectacle. His career hit a bit of a speed bump after the turn of the century, but the success of Captain America helped get things back on track for Johnson. Since then, there has been talk of him helming everything from Jurassic Park 4 to a Boba Fett spin-off.

Source: THR

Not long after Warner Bros. announced his involvement, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu has decided he will not direct the forthcoming adaptation of The Jungle Book.

There was no official reason given as to why Inarritu dropped the project, but Deadline‘s insiders suggest scheduling is to blame. The director is currently in post-production on his latest film Birdman and also has several other projects lined up.

Inarritu’s departure puts Warner Brothers in a tight spot as their Jungle Book film is in direct competition with an adaptation from Disney. The Mouse House’s project has Jon Favreau on-board as director and is scheduled for theatrical release in Fall 2015, so for now Disney has the advantage in this race.

Source: Deadline

Universal Pictures has bought the rights to The Wolf’s Hour, an alternate history/fantasy novel written by Robert McCammon.

Screenwriting brothers Kevin and Bradley Marcus optioned The Wolf’s Hour in the late ’80s, and wrote the current draft of the script. However, considering Universal has put production duties in the hands of Chris Morgan (Fast & Furious 6) and his partner Emile Gladstone, we wouldn’t be surprised if Morgan took a pass at the script as well.

The novel centers on a man with the ability to turn into a werewolf at-will who tries to stop a Nazi plot to poison England. Yes, it’s a story set during WWII about a werewolf who fights Nazis. Sounds…interesting.

Source: Deadline