Movie News Wrap Up: MPAA Ratings Changes, 'Croods' & 'Pitch Perfect' Sequels and More

This week:

An image of Eva Green from 300: Rise of an Empire arrives; Clifton Collins joins Transcendence; Pitch Perfect 2 targets a 2015 release; a sequel to The Croods is in development; David Lowery signs on to direct Torso; Nathan Fillion would like to play Spider-Man villain The Scorpion; and the MPAA plans to change their ratings system.


Hot on the heels of the first images and poster for 300: Rise of an Empire comes a new image featuring one of the film's stars, Eva Green, in action.

300 Rise of an Empire Image - Eva Green

In the follow-up (although it's actually a prequel) to Zack Snyder's film, Eva Green plays the character of Artemesia, a Persian commander with a serious bone to pick with the Greeks. And, as the image shows, she isn't afraid of thrusting herself right into battle.

Rise of an Empire's story runs concurrent to the story in the original 300, so don't expect to see too much crossover as far as characters are concerned. There will be plenty of action sequences to go around, though, as this tale focuses on the Battle of Artemisium, wherein the Greeks fought off a sea assault by the Persian army.

If nothing else, the film (which is under the direction of Noam Murro) has the visual palette down. Whether it will be able to capture the magic of the original is another question.

300: Rise of an Empire hits theaters on August 2, 2013.

Source: EW


Well-known character actor Clifton Collins Jr. has joined the cast of Wally Pfister's Transcendence.

Transcendence Casts Clifton Collins

The news comes less than a week after Kate Mara (House of Cards) joined the cast, which also includes Johnny Depp, Cillian Murphy, and Morgan Freeman. Unfortunately, since a lot of the plot's key details are being kept tightly under wraps, it's hard to speculate as to whom Collins might be playing.

Apparently, Pfister – the long-time cinematographer for Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan – has learned a thing or two about keeping his projects shrouded in mystery.

Source: Variety


Even though they aren't exactly striking while the iron is hot, Universal has announced Pitch Perfect 2 will release in 2015.

Pitch Perfect 2 Releasing 2015

The news comes straight from CinemaCon, where Universal confirmed Pitch Perfect writer Kay Cannon would script the sequel. The first film, which starred Anna Kendrick and 2013 MTV Movie Awards host Rebel Wilson, went on to gross over $100 million worldwide and was considered a breakout hit. Moreover, the film's soundtrack became the best-selling soundtrack of last year, thanks to its acapella riffs on popular hits.

Since then, the film has attained somewhat of a cult following, which makes talk of a sequel understandable. However, it's unclear which cast members might be returning.

Source: Deadline


DreamWorks Animation announced they have started development on a sequel to The Croods.

The Croods Sequel in Development

The news doesn't come as any sort of surprise, considering The Croods has grossed over $400 million worldwide. It's also this year's second highest-grossing movie, behind Oz the Great and Powerful.

It seems like a no-brainer that when an animated film does well, talk of a sequel surfaces. And with DreamWorks now using Fox for distribution, who's to say an Ice Age and Croods crossover isn't in our future?

Source: Coming Soon


David Lowery has signed on to direct a feature-film adaptation of Marc Andreyko and Brian Michael Bendis' graphic novel, Torso.

David Lowery Directing Torso

Torso follows famed Prohibition agent Eliot Ness after his time hunting Al Capone. While working in Cleveland, Ness was on the trail of a serial killer who would leave only a mutilated torso behind.

Bendis and Andreyko plan go very small with Torso, and are financing the film themselves, alongside the production company Circle of Confusion. A period cop drama based on a graphic novel is apparently very hard to pull off - people like David Fincher and Todd McFarlane have tried their hand at Torso before - but apparently Lowery is the man for the job. His film Ain't Them Bodies Saints premiered at Sundance earlier this year, and he has signed on to write and direct the Pete's Dragon remake.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter


Although it's usually fans that partake of wish-casting Nathan Fillion, now the Castle actor is getting in on the action himself. When asked (through Twitter) which Marvel character he would like to play, Fillion responded by saying:

“@andyemcadam: @nathanfillionif you could play any character in an up and coming marvel film?”The Scorpion. Boom.

— Nathan Fillion (@NathanFillion) April 12, 2013

While Amazing Spider-Man 2 has already found its villain in Jamie Foxx's Electro, there's no reason why Scorpion couldn't be the third film's antagonist. However, whether or not Sony would pick Fillion for the role is another issue.

Even though this is all a "what if" scenario, it's still interesting to think that of all the Marvel characters out there Fillion chose The Scorpion. Maybe after playing the hero for so long, he's ready to try his hand at a villain?

Which Marvel Comics hero or villain would you like to see Nathan Fillion  play?


The MPAA has announced plans to change their ratings system to help better understand why a certain film received its rating.

MPAA Rating System Changes

At this year's CinemaCon, MPAA CEO Christopher Dodd made the announcement, saying that a film's rating will now feature a clearer explanation. As the image above showcases, most ratings feature a brief blurb from the MPAA regarding the film's content, but those aren't always to read on a poster or in a 30-second TV spot.

These new rating explanations will be in larger text right alongside the actual rating letter. The end goal of the MPAA's new campaign, called 'Check the Box,' is to better inform parents as to a film's content.

Source: Fox News

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