'Hulk' F/X. 'X2' Thefts.'Smallville,' 'Spidey' and 'Bulletproof Monk': Comics2Film Wrap for April 29th, 2003

Tue, April 29th, 2003 at 12:00am PDT

TV/Film
Rob Worley, Columnist

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HULK

Universal pictures presented a panel on "Hulk" at this weekend's

WonderCon. Occasional Comics2Film contributor Douggary Grant was on hand as CG

F/X gurus Paul Giacoppo and Glen McIntosh hosted the session. Here's Douggary's

recap of the panel:

"They opened up the panel by talking a little about the long process

this film took before actually being made. The producer (Gale Anne Hurd) has

been trying to get this film made for almost twelve years. She had been waiting

for the right combination of cast, crew, and technology to come together, so she

could make the film the way it needs to be made.

"They spoke about how Ang Lee picked up his life and moved to the Bay

Area just so he could be directly involved with the lengthy pre and post

production to insure his vision was carried out. Lee had very strong

feelings of exactly how the Hulk should look and how the film as a whole should

be handled.

"Giacoppo and McIntosh showed the new trailer which had a bunch of

awesome new scenes: it showed the accident that triggers Banner turning into the

Hulk, Hulk leaping, Hulk battling tanks, jets, and helicopters, and last but not

least the Hulk dogs (they actually looked pretty cool).

"The most important thing to note was that the CG imaging of the Hulk

was far improved from the last trailer. I asked and got confirmation that the

previous trailer had included effects scenes that were not 100% finished but

that they felt looked good enough to make it into the trailer. I have read about

people complaining that Hulk looked too much like a game sprite or too 'green.'

As far as looking like a video game character I can say its not even close, he

looks amazing!

"For being too green, that Ang Lee has the Hulk go through several

different types of transformations throughout the film. There are actually at

least three different sizes (ranging from 9ft to 15ft!) and depending on his

'mood' the shade of green can change.

"The panelists said Ang was VERY specific about what color he wanted in

which scenes and wanted the 'jade green' (the color he is when he swings the

tank around) to stay no matter what.

"They spoke about Ang being a long time fan of the comic and helping to

put together a style guide that was distributed to everyone working on the film.

It was a book containing actual panels taken from the comics. Many artists were

represented including John Byrne, Sal Buscema (who's scale for the Hulk was the

one used in the film, about 5x human mass. They compared it to the Troll in

'Lord of the Rings'), and Jack Kirby.

"There were a lot of test shots shown...test footage of body builders or

athletes doing various Hulk-like activities (like smashing faux office furniture

or leaping) they were very careful not to make Hulk look like Superman flying

when he took to the skies in one of his trademark 3 mile leaps.

"They had tons of character studies done so they could make sure hulk as

real as possible. Anatomy experts were asked to make sure that the muscles moved

and flexed correctly. To do this right they did extensive studies of every part

of the Hulk's body going through its entire range of motion. This footage was

then

gone over by experts and corrected where it didn't behave just right. I can't

imagine the amount of work that went into just these studies!"

X-MEN 2

Mutants all over the country are being hunted by frenetic fans according to a

write-up in USA

Today.

X-Fans are reportedly so excited about the upcoming "X2" that

they're stealing posters from bus stops, including the one right in front of Fox

Studios in Los Angeles.

The studio reports almost 200 of the large-size ads promoting the move are

missing from 15 cities. The one-sheet advertisements are said to carry a $40

price tag.

Thanks to Movie City

Geek for the lead.

SMALLVILLE

From

a press release:

America Online, Warner Bros. Television and The WB Television Network have

teamed up to create new AOL-exclusive original promotional programming

surrounding The WB's and Warner Bros. Television's hit series

"Smallville." This series of two- to four-minute episodic video

segments will focus on Clark Kent's friend Chloe Sullivan (played by Allison

Mack) as she investigates suspicious happenings around the town of Smallville.

Beginning April 29 and continuing through May 20, a new "Chloe

Chronicles" video will launch each week on Tuesdays at 10 p.m. (ET),

immediately following "Smallville" on The WB. These vignettes, best

viewed through AOL for Broadband, can only be seen on AOL Television at AOL

Keyword: Smallville.

The "Chloe Chronicles" video segments will follow the curious Chloe

as she tries to solve the mysteries of Smallville--featuring events that are

related to the show's plot line, including hidden messages and clues to upcoming

episodes. This "companion programming" is designed to give viewers

further insight into the plot and characters of "Smallville," adding

an additional layer to the mythology in each of the weekly episodes.

"We're delighted to team with Warner Bros. Television and The WB to

offer this 'Smallville' content to our members," said Patricia Karpas, Vice

President and General Manager, AOL Television. "This type of high-quality

companion programming is at the heart of our mission -- to offer AOL and AOL for

Broadband members unique and compelling ways to experience their favorite

television shows. This is also an exciting example of how AOL Television can

help networks tap into and build loyal audiences for their shows."

Added Lisa Gregorian, Senior Vice President, Television, Warner Bros.

Marketing Services, "The 'Chloe Chronicles' are a great way for Warner

Bros. Television to extend the 'Smallville' experience and to complement the

intriguing, compelling stories established by the series' executive producers Al

Gough and Miles Millar. Our goal is to create companion programming that offers

new and exciting ways to engage the audience, just as music videos did for

record promotion."

Suzanne Kolb, Executive Vice President, Marketing, The WB, said, "The WB

is always looking for new and innovative ways to promote our shows. The

partnership with Warner Bros. Television and AOL presents a great way to

increase viewer investment in 'Smallville.'"

This project represents the latest collaboration between AOL Television,

Warner Bros. Television and The WB supporting "Smallville." Most

recently, AOL Television celebrated Christopher Reeve's guest appearance on

"Smallville" with online companion features that provided added

insight into Reeve's character--including an exclusive sneak peek of the

fictional Time magazine cover and article seen in the show in which Reeve's

character was honored as "Man of the Year." The companies also teamed

up for a sweepstakes in which the winner would be "drawn in" to an

upcoming D.C. Comics "Smallville" comic book. In addition, AOL

Television offered an exclusive message from villain Lionel Luthor to the

residents of Smallville that couldn't be seen anywhere else.

BULLETPROOF MONK

Back in January, "Bulletproof

Monk" was plagued by pirates who were already distributing the movie on DVD

in Hong Kong after the film was captured on videotape at an L.A. screening. Now,

The

Hollywood Reporter says the sale of legitimate DVDs may be harming the

movie.

The film was released in China on almost the exact day that it was

released in theaters in the U.S. Overseas distributors fear that the release

will damage the movie's box office in the same region.

Guangdong Face is

distributing the video, dubbed in the national Chinese language of Putonghua.

SPIDER-MAN CLASSIC

Spidey fans in the UK will get to see remastered episodes of the 1967

"Spider-Man" animated show on Channel 4 soon, according to today's Variety.

Fox Kids Europe and Buena Vista International Television have renovated

prints of "Classic Spider-Man" from the original 35mm film negatives.

The C4 network has not yet announced an airdate for the restored show. Sony

has also expressed interest in the show, although they've got an all-new

animated "Spider-Man" due out this year.

 
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