The Nexus of Pop-Culture Fandom

The Morning Roundup: SAG Craziness, Cool New Films, Geeky Delights

Written by: Phoebe Raven, CC2K Staff Writer

This morning we have confusing SAG strike updates, a first look at the Berlin Film Festival, various news of upcoming films and intricacies to delight a geek's heart.

ImageThe Super Bowl overshadowed everything this weekend (an estimated 95 million Americans watched according to Nielsen), but it is also time to start looking towards future projects in Hollywood, now that Award season is almost over.

The Box Office champion was Liam Neeson's

Taken, who finally dethroned that mall cop, who resides at No. 2. Since horror is considered a "female-driven genre" when it comes to box office numbers, it should come as no surprise The Uninvited opened at #3, driven by all the females not interested in football, perhaps.

Now, we try to keep you in the loop regarding that SAG strike that might still be coming, but it's getting ever more complicated. Last week national executive director Doug Allen was finally relieved of duty and kicked out after he failed to negotiate an acceptable deal. But now guild prexy Alen Rosenberg and first Vice President Anne-Marie Johnson are going to court to have him reinstated. Scheduled talks with the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers have been canceled until the issue is resolved. What in the world are they doing over there?

ImageThe Berlin Film Festival, or simply Berlinale as we call it, is kicking off this weekend and running for ten days (Feb 5th – Feb 15th), and the lineup looks to spark some heated debates. The opening film will be The International, starring Clive Owen and Naomi Watts, directed by German Tom Tykwer (he who made Run, Lola, Run). It's about an evil bank financing war. For complete coverage of the Festival, go here.

News from pre-production heaven/hell:

John Carpenter has reemerged to direct the indie flick The Ward. Apparently it's about ghosts and Amber Heard will be haunted by them, in a mental institution naturally.

Aaron Schneider's Get Low has added two more cast members to the alread signed Sissi Spacek and Robert Duvall. Bill Murray and Lucas Black have signed on to play gay partners attending the funeral of Felix "Bush" Breazeale, which he planned while still alive.

This bit is for Rob van Winkle especially: Aaron Sorkin has been tabbed to write The Challenge, the courtroom drama George Clooney is producing, maybe directing and hoping to star in. I think that's a good idea, because the film is about Navy lawyer Charles Swift and his efforts to ensure a fair trial for Osama bin Laden's driver, Salim Hamdan, who had been held at Guantanamo Bay for five years. Rob, are you getting excited yet?

Jason Bourne is coming to your X-Box, Playstation, PC, or whatever medium you use to play games. Electronic Arts has struck a deal with Ludlum Entertainment to create games based on the author's works, including the Bourne franchise. The first Bourne game is already underway, being created at Uppsala, Sweden. (Btw, that name sounds to Germans like someone saying "oops, sorry" after dropping something. Let's hope EA doesn't drop the ball on this.)

And there's also still plenty of talk about the Super Bowl ads and movie trailers and all their intricacies. I can't be bothered to write them all down, so here's some linkage:

– go here for speculation on how big Devastator in the new Transformers movie is and what else you haven't seen yet

-go here for something cool spotted in the StarTrek Super Bowl trailer

-go here to find out who directed that Alec Baldwin Hulu ad

And now go get a life.