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DoorQ.Com | Cruise out, Cavill in for ‘U.N.C.L.E’; NBC renews ‘Hannibal’; Mendes back for Bond & RIP Jack Vance
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Cruise out, Cavill in for ‘U.N.C.L.E’; NBC renews ‘Hannibal’; Mendes back for Bond & RIP Jack Vance

While the idea of director Steven Soderbergh and long-time collaborator George Clooney doing an adaptation of the 1964-68 TV spy series The Man From U.N.C.L.E. sounded like a potentially good idea, once Clooney dropped out for medical reasons and Soderbergh flew the coop soon after, perhaps  Warner Brothers should have just acknowledged that a reboot of the show should’ve been put into turnaround, where it could eventually pass from executives thoughts. But that seemed not to enter the WB’s mind, so they shuffled the movie to British director Guy Ritchie, who has successfully made two Sherlock Holmes films for the studio, so I’m guessing they thought he could do the same to what is, though, a distinctly American TV series. Sherlock Holmes has wide appeal, yet the U.N.C.L.E. franchise ran its course before the end of the 1960s and has spent very little time in syndication since. But the studio soldiered on, casting Tom Cruise as Napoleon Solo –first played by the legendary Robert Vaughn (Armie Hammer was already set to play the David McCallum role of Illya Kuryakin). But soon after, however, Paramount announced that they were fast-tracking Mission: Impossible 5 to begin production towards the end of the year, which would’ve put Cruise in a bind as the tail end of U.N.C.L.E.’s production would have left Cruise little time to prepare for M:I-5. So Cruise decided to drop out of U.N.C.L.E. to focus all his energy on the fifth film in that “other” classic 1960s spy series.  Now, what is becoming increasingly an everyday thing for studios looking to promote unique American productions, they’ll farm out the lead role of Napoleon Solo to British actor Henry Cavill, who is donning an American accent to play the All-American super hero, Superman, in the upcoming WB film Man of Steel.Hannibal - Season 1

NBC has finally announced the fate of Bryan Fuller’s Hannibal, nearly two weeks after announcing their fall slate. The series, while not the break-out they hoped for, none the less settled in nicely in its Thursday slot. While critically lauded, with most saying the show was creatively better than FOX’s The Following (which catered to the same audience and trampled over the same ground), it was criticized (much like The Following was) for being too violent and gory (The series made headlines in April when an episode featuring children-turned-murderers was pulled upon Fuller’s request and the NBC affiliate in Salt Lake City dropped the series). The show will return at midseason, with a 13 episode order (though Fuller said he sold the show to NBC as a 13 episode seasons, culminating in a five year run).

With the huge success of the JamSkyfall_Sam_Mendes_Daniel_Craig-300x199es Bond film Skyfall, it was only natural that producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson would want Sam Mendes to return and helm the 24th Bond film. But Mendes, who’s first love is the theatre, told them that he had two projects in the pipeline -the West End production of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and King Lear– that would be done first. While Bond 24 had no release date, it was assumed that it bow in November 2014, which meant production would need to start in January. So the producers, understanding his commitment to the theatre, decided to search for a new director. That started the rumor mill of who could do the film, with Christopher Nolan being the frontrunner. But Nolan (who has made it known he would love to direct a Bond film) is deep in pre-production on Interstellar, which begins filming towards the end of summer, so that means he was out as well. Now it looks like the Bond producers will wait for Mendes, which would effectively delay the next film for a year. So now  James Bond 24 will bow in November of 2015.

Locus Online takes a look at SF Grand Master Jack Vance, an influential science fiction author of the post World War II era, who passed away on May 26 at the age of 96.

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  1. Marc L. says
    May 31, 2013, 4:59 pm

    Napoleon Solo was played by Robert Vaughn in the original U.N.C.L.E. series, not Robert Culp. Culp was in I, Spy. Oh btw, Vaughn is still pretty much alive and well. 🙂


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