This week:

Kevin Smith is waiting on the Weinsteins for the green light on Clerks 3; The Giver has found its young lead; Steven Spielberg vies for the rights to The Grapes of Wrath; James Franco prepares to direct The Sound and the Fury; and Stan Lee says a Silver Surfer movie will eventually happen.

While Kevin Smith already has a Clerks 3 script, shooting schedule, and 3 budget options ready to go, there is one thing still standing in the sequel’s way: The Weinstein Company.

According to Smith, TWC has the right of first refusal on the picture before the director can actually go ahead and start shooting. Although this tiny roadblock is in the way, Smith not only believes the Weinstein Company will say yes, but he hopes to have the film ready for a Sundance 2014 debut. However, if that’s going to happen, the Weinsteins are going to need to sign off on Clerks 3 soon.

And, while we’re intrigued to see what Smith has cooked up for Clerks 3, which he describes as his “Cinema Paradiso,” we’re even more curious to find out whether Smith will commit to his retirement plan.

Source: KCRW via The Playlist

Speaking of The Weinstein Company, it looks like they have found the young lead for their upcoming adaptation of The Giver.

Newcomer Brenton Thwaites will play Jonas, who in the book is selected to become the next “Receiver of Memory” in Lois Lowry’s award-winning YA novel. Jonas receives the past memories from the eponymous “Giver”, who will be played by Jeff Bridges in the film.

Although few will recognize Thwaites based on name and photo alone, he just finished filming Maleficent, in which he plays the character of Prince Philip. He was also at one point rumored for Transformers 4, but nothing become of that.

Source: Deadline

DreamWorks, the production company founded by director Steven Spielberg (among others), is reportedly in talks for the film rights to The Grapes of Wrath, the seminal novel from John Steinbeck.

Steinbeck’s novel follows the Joad family as they make a cross-country trek from Oklahoma to California at the height of the Depression. It also won Steinbeck a Pulitzer Prize and a National Book Award.

Although Spielberg is very interested in the property, DreamWorks PR reports he will only produce. Spielberg is plenty busy with an adaptation of his own: American Sniper with Bradley Cooper.

If DreamWorks does end up securing the rights, though, we’re sure plenty of directors will jump at the opportunity to helm an updated version of The Grapes of Wrath. After all, the 1940s adaptation of The Grapes of Wrath helped John Ford win an Oscar.

Source: Deadline

Actor/writer/director James Franco is reportedly pushing hard to direct the cinematic adaptation of William Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury.

Franco has revealed to LA Times that he hopes to cast Mad Men star Jon Hamm in the role of Mr. Compson and his brother, Dave Franco, as Quentin Compson. Franco’s frequent collaborator and close friend Danny McBride (This is the End) is also being considered for a role.

As some might know, Franco just recently debuted his other Faulkner adaptation, As I Lay Dying, at the Cannes Film Festival. If we were to guess we might say Franco is a fan of the author’s work.

Source: LA Times

While attending Wizard World Comic Con, prolific comic book writer Stan Lee offered up his thoughts on all things Marvel, including whether or not he thinks a Silver Surfer movie is in the cards.

According to Lee, who is quite partial to the Silver Surfer, Marvel will eventually get around to a Surfer movie, but they’re plate is very full at the moment. With characters like Ant-Man, the Guardians of the Galaxy, Black Panther, and Doctor Strange all vying for screen time it’s hard to imagine when Marvel might squeeze the Silver Surfer in. Yet, Lee thinks it will happen.

“Well, let me put it to you this way: Back at Marvel, they are frantically looking for what is the next one they’re going to do. There is no way they won’t eventually do a Silver Surfer movie. It may not be for a few years because they’re thinking and working on Doctor Strange, Black Panther, Ant-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy. Everything we have. And the fans seem to want all of them. But they’ll get around to a Silver Surfer feature because he’s a wonderful character.”

Obviously, since Lee has no official say in the matter, it’s hard to take his comments as anything more than rumor. At the same time, that doesn’t mean he can’t put in a good word or two for Silver Surfer.

Source: MTV Geek