Feb. 18, 2015 | 3:30 a.m.

‘Guardians of the Galaxy': The humans behind Rocket Raccoon

Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy" conceptual artwork showing Rocket Racoon, voiced by Bradley Cooper. (Marvel)
Early in the making of Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy,” visual effects supervisor Stephane Ceretti invited a raccoon named Oreo to spend a few hours in his London office. He was looking for inspiration for one of the movie’s central characters, the mouthy wiseguy Rocket Raccoon, and the natural world seemed like a productive starting place. “They touch everything. They’re very tactile animals,” Ceretti recalled in a phone interview last week. “We spent a lot of time filming the way he moved so the animators could reference that. Even though it’s a raccoon that can walk and talk, we just want to make him look as present in the image as possible so people don’t question it.” Ceretti’s intensive study sessions paid off. “Guardians” is one of five films vying for the Oscar for outstanding visual effects at Sunday’s 87th […]
Feb. 17, 2015 | 12:46 p.m.

‘Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1′ deleted scenes: Watch Peeta, Effie, Katniss

Two newly-released deleted scenes from “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1″ offer glimpses of Katniss Everdeen preparing to become the Mockingjay and Peeta Mellark in a tense conversation with President Snow. The scenes were released Tuesday in time for the film’s digital HD release. The film is due out on Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand on March 6. One deleted scene features Effie (Elizabeth Banks) intervening as Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) is primped before appearing as the Mockingjay. “This is the face of a revolution, not some cave painting,” Effie exclaims, chasing Katniss’ makeshift stylists from the room. “Don’t worry Katniss, we’re going to make this work. For you, and for me, and for Cinna.” In the other scene, President Snow (Donald Sutherland) orders Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) to appeal to the public’s sense of reason in an effort to quell […]
Feb. 17, 2015 | 7:00 a.m.

‘Infinity Gauntlet’ No. 1 preview: Gerry Duggan, Dustin Weaver get cosmic

'Infinity Gauntlet' No. 1 (featured image)
As Marvel kicks off its massive new Secret Wars event in May, it will be Gerry Duggan and Dustin Weaver teaming up to present a reimagined “Infinity Gauntlet.” Written by Duggan (“Deadpool”) and Weaver (“Edge of Spider-Verse”) with cover and pencils by Weaver, this “Infinity Gauntlet” will chronicle the adventures of a young woman named Anwen Bakian, who lives with her dad, sister and grandfather in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, searching for food and hiding from enormous insects. When Anwen discovers a mysterious stone that potentially holds considerable cosmic power, however, her circumstances change. Hero Complex readers can check out exclusive “Infinity Gauntlet” artwork, including Skottie Young’s homage to the original “Infinity Gauntlet” No. 4 cover and character sketches, in the gallery above or in the links below. ‘INFINITY GAUNTLET’ No. 1: Dustin Weaver’s cover | Skottie Young’s variant cover | […]
Feb. 16, 2015 | 5:00 a.m.

Nintendo finally gets the 3-D right with its new 3DS console

Nintendo has updated its 3DS hardware and released a revamped version of the game "The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask." (Nintendo of America)
THE PLAYER When Nintendo released its hand-held 3DS system in 2011, the tiny machine packed a neat trick. It allowed for 3-D — without the glasses. I was smitten on first use. There’s Mario and Luigi, with greater depth! There’s a starfighter flying through space, and you really do need to squint to see off into the distance! Sometime around Week 2 or 3, though, I started to wonder whether the 3DS was somehow breaking my brain. Although it’s never given me the headaches that forever have me avoiding live-action 3-D films — or the nausea I’ve experienced with the Oculus Rift headset and 3-D simulators such as Disneyland’s Star Tours ride — something still felt … off. Playing the device with the 3-D turned on became akin to toying with a modern autostereogram. You needed a moment to find […]
Feb. 13, 2015 | 1:28 p.m.

‘Deadpool’ casts Gina Carano opposite Ryan Reynolds’ Merc with a Mouth

Gina Carano is set to star opposite Ryan Reynolds in Fox’s upcoming “Deadpool,” which tracks the adventures of the mentally unstable mercenary, Hero Complex confirmed Friday. The actress and former MMA star, whose credits include the Steven Soderbergh action film “Haywire” and “Fast & Furious 6,” will play Angel Dust, a mutant created by Geoff Johns and Shawn Martinbrough who discovers she has the ability to increase her adrenaline to give her temporary bursts of superhuman strength. (Angel Dust first appeared in 2002’s “Morlocks” No. 1.) Carano’s casting was first reported by the Hollywood Reporter. Earlier this week, “Deadpool” star Reynolds gave comics fans a first look at the antihero’s mask and gloves, posting a picture of a prototype on Twitter. “Sepia tone disguises the fact the mask is ballerina pink. It’s early. 365 sleeps early,” Reynolds wrote in the […]
Feb. 13, 2015 | 12:34 p.m.

‘Suicide Squad': Joel Kinnaman in early talks to replace Tom Hardy

Joel Kinnaman
Joel Kinnaman is in early talks to replace Tom Hardy in “Suicide Squad,” director David Ayer’s upcoming film based on the DC Comics title about a group of villains who act as mercenaries, Hero Complex has confirmed. Hardy, who brought to the screen the Batman villain Bane in “The Dark Knight Rises,” had been set to star as Rick Flagg, but scheduling commitments forced him to leave the film, which is set for release Aug. 5, 2016. David Ayer, who most recently helmed the Brad Pitt World War II tank drama “Fury,” will write and direct “Suicide Squad.” The ensemble cast includes Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Jared Leto as the Joker, Jai Courtney as Boomerang and Cara Delevingne as Enchantress. Oscar winner Leto will be the first actor to play the Joker on the big […]
Feb. 13, 2015 | 12:00 p.m.

Exclusive: Harry Potter characters get Pop! vinyl figures

Funko and Warner Bros. are introducing a line of Harry Potter-themed Pop! vinyl figures. (Warner Bros. / Funko)
Accio new toys! Funko and Warner Bros. are reimagining Harry Potter and his Hogwarts pals for the Pop! vinyl figures toy line. Hero Complex readers get a first look at renderings of the Dumbledore and Hagrid figures. Concept art for the complete toy line is debuting at the New York Toy Fair this weekend. This is the first time J.K. Rowling’s wizarding-world characters are being featured in Funko’s popular collectible toy line, which already includes fan-favorite characters from franchises such as “Game of Thrones,” “The Walking Dead,” “Star Wars” and the DC and Marvel universes. The toy line will include Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Voldemort, Albus Dumbledore, Severus Snape and Rubeus Hagrid. Check them out in the gallery above. What are you most looking forward to at the New York Toy Fair? Let us know in the comments. […]
Feb. 13, 2015 | 11:07 a.m.

‘Crimson Peak’ trailer: Guillermo del Toro unveils gothic horror show

Mia Wasikowska in a scene from "Crimson Peak." (Legendary/Universal)
Guillermo del Toro has described his new big-screen Gothic romance “Crimson Peak” as a movie that comes very close to a living painting — and the new teaser trailer for the film showcases its colors and shadows in ominous fashion, not to mention playing up the movie’s portentous atmosphere. Mia Wasikowska, Jessica Chastain, Charlie Hunnam and Tom Hiddleston star in the film, which the director co-wrote with Matthew Robbins and Lucinda Coxon. He has promised a “perverse” period ghost story for adults set in an elaborate haunted mansion, and the film’s official synopsis certainly suggests plenty of tension and intrigue: “In the aftermath of a family tragedy, an aspiring author is torn between love for her childhood friend and the temptation of a mysterious outsider. Trying to escape the ghosts of her past, she is swept away to a house […]
Feb. 12, 2015 | 4:41 p.m.

‘Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero’ creators flash back to ’80s on Disney XD

Sashi (Tania Gunadi), Penn (Thomas Middleditch) and Boone (Adam DeVine) make up the central trio in the new series, "Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero." (Disney XD)
Jared Bush and Sam Levine, the creators of Disney XD’s “Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero,” drew inspiration from childhood memories to craft the new animated series. At the age of 12, Bush discovered that his parents worked for the Central Intelligence Agency, while Levine, the child of a New York City film projectionist, would routinely sit beside his father to watch classic movies and new releases. ———— FOR THE RECORD In an earlier version of this article, it was stated that Alfred Molina and Larry Wilmore were either guest stars or recurring actors. They are both regular cast members on the show. ———— “One of my favorites was ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark,'” Levine said in a recent interview. “I remember watching it four times back to back, and covering my eyes every time the faces melted off at the end.” Those […]
Feb. 12, 2015 | 1:21 p.m.

‘Deadpool': Ryan Reynolds offers first look at Marvel hero’s mask

Ryan Reynolds is starring in Fox's "Deadpool." (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
“Deadpool” star Ryan Reynolds gave comics fans a first look at the antihero’s mask and gloves, posting a picture of a prototype on Twitter. “Sepia tone disguises the fact the mask is ballerina pink. It’s early. 365 sleeps early,” Reynolds wrote in the Tweet, referring to the film’s release date, slated for Feb. 12, 2016, exactly one year from now. The film, from 20th Century Fox, is based on the Marvel character Wade Winston Wilson, a mentally unstable mercenary known for his wisecracking dialogue and tendency to break the fourth wall, speaking directly to comic book readers. Reynolds (“Green Lantern”) played a version of Deadpool in 2009’s “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” and has long been expected to headline a film based on Marvel’s Merc with a Mouth. Test footage for the project that leaked last year was met with praise and […]
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