Aug. 14, 2013 | 6:00 a.m.
In the three years since he first slipped into green Lycra to portray Kick-Ass — an awkward teen turned wannabe superhero — much has changed for English actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson. He jumped from British TV heartthrob to American movie stardom, became a father and began to pop up in casting conversations about one of Hollywood’s juiciest roles: Christian Grey in the adaptation of E.L. James’ erotic bestseller “Fifty Shades of Grey” (which, not incidentally, will be directed by his wife, Sam Taylor-Wood). When “Kick-Ass” was released in 2010, Taylor-Johnson was more indie film darling than caped crusader, having starred in the romantic drama “The Greatest” and “Nowhere Boy,” a John Lennon biopic, both of which played at Sundance. “Kick-Ass” initially didn’t look like a breakthrough role; the movie took in a fair $96 million worldwide on a $30-million production budget. […]
July 19, 2013 | 4:23 p.m.
The most striking thing about Friday’s panel on “Kick-Ass 2” was what wasn’t mentioned — specifically Jim Carrey’s decision after the Sandy Hook massacre to not support the R-rated comic-book action movie in which he plays Col. Stars and Stripes, a masked crime-fighting vigilante. Though there were cheers from the audience when Carrey’s movie showed up in the trailer, moderator Drew McWeeny never asked comic book creators Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. about the issue, nor did he take any questions from fans — who would have been likely to bring up the issue in similar fashion to Thursday’s “Ender’s Game” panel when the first question to the filmmakers was about controversial novelist Orson Scott Card’s involvement with that movie. Rather, the “Kick-Ass 2” panelists discussed the sequel, which tracks a self-made high school superhero who joins up with […]
March 13, 2013 | 1:12 p.m.
Kick-Ass and Hit-Girl are back. The teenager-turned-masked-crusader and his foul-mouthed young friend return to the big screen in “Kick-Ass 2” this August. And if the new red-band trailer for the film is any indication, the sequel is going to have just as much over-the-top violence as the first film. “Kick-Ass” raised eyebrows when it was released in 2010 for what some critics said was gratuitous violence, and for the steady stream of profanities uttered by Chloë Grace Moretz, who played the 12-year-old murderous vigilante Hit-Girl. “’Kick-Ass’ is the movie our parents warned us about, the movie you don’t want your children to see,” wrote Times film critic Kenneth Turan. “A highly seductive enterprise that’s equal parts disturbing and enticing, it will leave you speechless because its characters — especially a 12-year-old virtuoso of violence named Hit-Girl — are anything but. The sequel to […]
April 10, 2012 | 3:38 p.m.
The first issue of “The Secret Service” arrives Wednesday from the very intriguing tandem of writer Mark Millar (“Kick-Ass,” “Wanted”) and artist David Gibbons (“Watchmen,” “Give Me Liberty”), and we’ve got some preview pages in the gallery above (you can view larger versions below). We caught up with Gibbons in a transatlantic phone call to talk about the new work and the echoes of a certain 1980s masterpiece that is back in the news these days. HC: “The Secret Service” gets off to quite a start in this first issue. What are you finding most interesting about the project so far? DG: It’s slightly unusual in that it’s not a superhero book, and I’m really pleased it isn’t a superhero book, we’ve got enough of those. That isn’t to say that this is not a book about heroes or some larger-than-life situations. It […]
March 19, 2012 | 8:59 a.m.
If super-villains read as many comic books at Mark Millar they would be renewing their passports instead of stewing inside Arkham Asylum or Ryker’s Island. “Here is something I’ve wondered ever since I was a kid: Why do super-villains always commit crimes n Metropolis, Gotham and New York City when Batman, Superman and Spider-Man are there?” asked Millar, the Scottish writer of “Kick Ass” and “Wanted.” He added: “The entire cast of the Avengers live in New York so if I were a super-villain I’d go somewhere I’m less likely to bump into Captain America. That’s the basic conceit of ‘Supercrooks.'” “Supercrooks” arrives on comics shelves this Wednesday and, above, you’ll find an exclusive preview of the first 10 pages. For this tale of bad-guy tourism, Millar reteams with his “Superior” co-creator, Leinil Yu. “Just about the best artist in the business,” Millar said of his Phillipines-based collaborator. […]
Sept. 22, 2011 | 6:00 a.m.
Mark Millar and John Romita Jr.’s “Kick-Ass” comic continues with the saga of high school geek Dave Lizewski and his transformation into the violent vigilante in the current seven-issue miniseries “Kick-Ass 2,” the second portion of the trilogy. The comic is nearly halfway through its run (No. 3 came out Aug. 24) and is still as popular as ever with five reprintings of issue No. 1 of the series alone. Hero Complex contributor Jevon Phillips caught up with writer Millar to find out what’s going on with the title and to get some answers about a movie sequel. JP: OK, first let’s get two things out of the way before we get to “Kick-Ass 2” and “Kick-Ass 3.” What did you think about “Super”? It came after “Kick-Ass” and was pretty similar in tone… MM: “Super” was an amazing movie. […]
Aug. 03, 2010 | 11:19 p.m.
Even over the phone — and across the Atlantic — you could hear the slump in Matthew Vaughn’s shoulders when he talked about the theatrical run of “Kick-Ass.” “It was disappointing to see that ‘Kick-Ass’ didn’t do the kind of box office we hoped for,” said Vaughn, who was director, producer and co-writer of the April release that pulled in $96 million worldwide, a number that felt like a letdown after so many industry observers had circled the film as a sensation-in-waiting. “Challenge and opportunity always go hand-in-hand, don’t they?” As he spoke, Vaughn was fresh from the set of “X-Men: First Class” in London, where he is immersed in his first big-budget studio production. That gives the 39-year-old filmmaker plenty of reason to look ahead instead of backward, but “Kick-Ass” has just arrived in stores on DVD and Blu-ray and he would love to see the movie become a home-video success story. “Sure, I […]
July 14, 2010 | 2:59 a.m.
“Kick-Ass” is going the home invasion route. The film hits Blu-ray on Aug. 3 with a two-hour documentary — yes, that’s right, a two-hour documentary — on the making of the film. Above is an exclusive peek at a segment from the epic “A New Kind of Superhero: The Making of Kick-Ass.” It just occurred to me that we should do an edgy/fun midnight screening for next year’s Hero Complex Film Festival. Maybe “Kick-Ass”? Thoughts, requests? — Geoff Boucher RECENT AND RELATED Matthew Vaughn: ‘Kick-Ass’ broke every rule Nic Cage baffled “Kick-Ass” cast with Adam West routine REVIEW: “Kick-Ass” hits the spot ‘Kick-Ass’ cheered in Austin, but one critic wonders why Adam West, back in the Batmobile 24 FRAMES: “Kick-Ass” may be a pop-culture moment VIDEO: “Kick-Ass” cast at Hero Complex screening Bryan Singer discusses his return to ‘X-Men’ Clicking on Green Links […]
April 18, 2010 | 8:02 p.m.
“Kick-Ass” has given Nicolas Cage one of the quirkier films roles of his career — and that’s saying something — but the 46-year-old actor brought plenty of his own to the part of Big Daddy, including the idea of imitating Adam West and his stiff, staccato version of superhero speak. Cage plays a revenge-crazed ex-cop whose life is destroyed when a local crime lord frames him for a crime that leads to hard time. After his release from the penitentiary, he dons a mask and costume and goes after the mob boss with a young sidekick — Hit Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz), a sweet-looking 11-year-old who talks like a longshoreman and fights like a ninja. Cage arrived on the set of “Kick-Ass” with a plan to imitate the kooky diction of West, the star of “Batman,” the ABC series that practically defined 1960s […]
April 16, 2010 | 1:50 a.m.
“Kick-Ass” is the movie our parents warned us about, the movie you don’t want your children to see. A highly seductive enterprise that’s equal parts disturbing and enticing, it will leave you speechless because its characters — especially a 12-year-old virtuoso of violence named Hit Girl — are anything but. This shrewd mixture of slick comic-book mayhem, unmistakable sweetness and ear-splitting profanity is poised to be a popular culture phenomenon because of its exact sense of the fantasies of the young male fanboy population. Directed by Matthew Vaughn and written by Jane Goldman and Vaughn, this comic-book-come-to-life was not just based on a book by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr., but made at the same time the original comic was being created. “I never understood why nobody did it before me,” says teenage protagonist Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson) […]