Marvel

July 25, 2014 | 5:00 a.m.

‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ director James Gunn prepares for liftoff

"Guardians of the Galaxy" director James Gunn. (Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times )
About midway through Marvel’s new interstellar adventure “Guardians of the Galaxy,” David Bowie’s “Moonage Daydream” plays over a shot of a ramshackle spaceship traveling toward a mining colony called Knowhere. The planet is actually the severed head of a fallen titan (or deity) where workers of alien races, some with candy-colored skin, collect valuable bone and fluid to ship to the outer reaches of the cosmos. The sequence could have been cribbed from the imagination of surrealist trickster Alejandro Jodorowsky, perhaps as part of his unrealized cinematic adaptation of Frank Herbert’s sci-fi novel “Dune.” Yet it’s far from the only over-the-top landscape in the film, which arrives in theaters Friday as Marvel’s riskiest venture. Based on a fairly obscure comics series, “Guardians of the Galaxy” is the first major studio film to be directed by James Gunn, a subversive stalwart […]
July 24, 2014 | 4:46 p.m.

Comic-Con 2014: Stan Lee bows out of San Diego signings due to illness

Fans hoping for a chance to meet Stan Lee at Comic-Con International in San Diego were disappointed to learn Thursday that the Marvel icon was forced to bow out of his scheduled appearances at the pop culture expo. The culprit? A case of laryngitis. In a statement released Thursday, the first full day of Comic-Con 2014, a spokesman for Lee said, “Unfortunately, Stan Lee has lost his voice due to laryngitis and is unable to attend this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, and has regrettably had to cancel his appearances. Stan is otherwise well and in good health, though he is disappointed to miss the event and wishes everyone a great time.” FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 Lee, 91, had been set to attend the convention on Friday and Saturday. Marvel enthusiasts will, however, be able to catch a glimpse of the […]
July 18, 2014 | 5:57 p.m.

Marvel reveals release dates for five films, but no titles for now

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is continuing to expand. The blockbuster comic book movie studio announced on its website late Friday release dates for five upcoming films, though the specific titles were not identified. According to Marvel.com, new movies will open on July 28 and November 3, 2017; July 6 and November 2, 2018; and May 3, 2019. Up next for Marvel, of course, will be “Guardians of the Galaxy,” James Gunn’s wild cosmic adventure. Due to arrive in theaters Aug. 1, “Guardians” follows Pratt’s roguish antihero, who’s on the run from a villain known as Ronan the Accuser (Lee Pace) after coming into possession of a mysterious orb. Before long, Quill is allied with a rogues’ gallery that includes Bradley’s gun-toting critter, Saldana’s green alien assassin, Bautista’s vengeful bruiser, and Diesel’s tree-like humanoid. In addition to the five guardians who […]
July 17, 2014 | 8:10 a.m.

New Captain America is revealed as Sam Wilson on ‘Colbert Report’

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When Steve Rogers can’t continue as Captain America, his longtime ally Sam Wilson, a.k.a. Falcon, will pick up the iconic shield – and, heavier still, the heroic name. Marvel Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada announced the comic-book news Wednesday night to Cap fan Stephen Colbert on Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report,” continuing a shakeup of some of the House of Ideas’ most successful concepts. “Steve Rogers saved the world again, but not without personal sacrifice,” Quesada told the arch comic host before naming the World War II veteran’s replacement (which, to Colbert’s disappointment wasn’t him) and unveiling the new Cap’s look. “But let me ask you something,” Colbert’s mock-reactionary pundit began. “This guy’s, this guy’s, this new guy is black — doesn’t that make him Captain African America?” Quesada shook his head and replied, “I don’t see colors.” (This being […]
July 17, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.

‘Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon': Dan Abnett talks game

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When Disney Interactive wanted to make sure Star-Lord and the gang seemed like themselves in “Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon,” it got Dan Abnett. Few, if any, know more about the truly out there outer-space superteam: The prolific Englishman co-wrote the 2008-2010 comic book series that inspired the lineup found in the mobile game, out Thursday, and the upcoming Marvel cosmic adventure film, out Aug. 1 — as well as this spring’s “Guardians of the Galaxy Prelude” comics that tie in to the movie, and penned, on his own, the just-released novel “Rocket Raccoon and Groot: Steal the Universe.” Abnett worked with art director Yehudi Mercado on the game’s story line, advising on characters’ behavior and distinct voices. So how consistent are the roguish Star-Lord, assassin Gamora, rampaging Drax, well-armed critter Rocket and tree-like tough guy Groot across […]
July 16, 2014 | 9:00 a.m.

‘Guardians of the Galaxy': Rhomann Dey, Nova Prime posters revealed

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“Guardians of the Galaxy” has released two new character posters, featuring John C. Reilly as Nova Corpsman Rhomann Dey and Glenn Close as intergalactic police chief Nova Prime. Hero Complex readers can check out the new images at right and below. Marvel previously unveiled similar posters of the five Guardians — Star-Lord/Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista) and the duo of Rocket Raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper) and Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel). View the earlier character posters by clicking the links below. Star-Lord | Gamora | Rocket and Groot | Drax Due to arrive in theaters Aug. 1, “Guardians” follows Pratt’s roguish antihero, who’s on the run from a villain known as Ronan the Accuser (Lee Pace) after coming into possession of a mysterious orb. Before long, Quill is allied with a rogues’ […]
July 15, 2014 | 2:09 p.m.

‘Big Hero 6’: New trailer spotlights adorable robot action, humor

Hiro Hamada leads BayMax by the hand in a scene from "Big Hero 6." (Disney)
“All right, let me get this straight: a man in a kabuki mask attacked you with an army of miniature flying robots?” So goes the promising opening scene of the new trailer for “Big Hero 6,” which marks the first Disney animated movie to use Marvel comic characters since the company acquired Marvel Entertainment in 2009. The clip sets the tone for the film, slated to hit theaters on Nov. 7, showcasing the relationship between a robotics prodigy named Hiro Hamada and his robot companion BayMax. Judging by the preview, the pair still have a lot of work to do before they go about stopping Mr. Kabuki and saving the world. For starters? Some “upgrades” for BayMax. You can check out the trailer below. Disney this week announced the voice cast for the film, including Ryan Potter as Hamada and Scott […]
July 15, 2014 | 11:12 a.m.

Marvel’s new Thor is a woman — and is ‘Thor,’ not ‘She-Thor’

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Who says a woman can’t be the God of Thunder? In October, a new, female Thor will rise to replace the Odinson that Marvel readers have known since “Journey Into Mystery” No. 83 in 1962, the company announced Tuesday morning on ABC’s “The View” talk show. It’s a major shake-up of a Marvel bedrock character, and the company is hammering home that the change is no gimmick. “This is not She-Thor,” said Jason Aaron, who will write the new series, in a statement. “This is not Lady Thor. This is not Thorita. This is Thor. This is the Thor of the Marvel Universe. But it’s unlike any Thor we’ve ever seen before.” And the one-word title bears that out: “Thor.” Aaron, writer of the current, acclaimed “Thor, God of Thunder,” will be joined by artist Russell Dauterman (“Cyclops,” “Supurbia”) in […]
July 15, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.

Animation pioneer Jerry Rees to direct Marvel Experience

Concept art for the touring attraction The Marvel Experience. (Hero Ventures / Marvel)
Animation pioneer Jerry Rees will lead the creative team developing the Marvel Experience, a theme-park attraction expected to tour the U.S. and Canada later this year. A film director and producer known for his animation work in “Tron” and his 1987 milestone short film “The Brave Little Toaster,” Rees has directed 16 Disney theme park attractions around the world in California, Hong Kong, Florida and Paris. Rick Licht, the CEO of Hero Ventures, the live entertainment company that partnered with Marvel to create the touring attraction, said in a news release issued Tuesday that “Jerry Rees brought a lifetime of creativity to the table and took the Marvel Experience to places well beyond our imagination.” The touring dome complex, which will span two acres and reach more than six stories high, will offer superhero fans a 4D motion-based ride featuring an […]
July 14, 2014 | 2:59 p.m.

‘Big Hero 6′ voice cast set: Ryan Potter, Scott Adsit, Maya Rudolph, more

Pictured in concept art, the  San Fransokyo in "Big Hero 6." Credit: Disney
Walt Disney Animation Studios has announced the voices who will be behind the action heroes of “Big Hero 6,” the first Disney animated movie based on a Marvel comic. Ryan Potter will play the robotics prodigy named Hiro Hamada, and his robot friend BayMax will be played by Scott Adsit. The rest of the cast includes Maya Rudolph, James Cromwell, Damon Wayans Jr., T.J. Miller, Alan Tudyk, Jamie Chung, Genesis Rodriguez and Daniel Henney. The team of superheroes will do battle in a high-tech city called San Fransokyo, a fantastical mash-up of Tokyo and San Francisco. Speaking to Hero Complex in June, director Don Hall said that the absence of a detail-obsessed fan base for the lesser-known series was part of its appeal, as it left every character and setting open to interpretation. “I was looking for something on the obscure side, something that would […]
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