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Disney Finds New Director and Writer for Musical ‘Oliver Twist’ Starring Ice Cube

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Danny Strong, co-creator of Fox’s Empire, has been tapped to pen Disney’s modern and musical take on Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed.

Thomas Kail, the Tony-winning director of Hamilton, is attached to helm the project, which has Ice Cube on board to star and produce.

Also producing are Marc Platt, the veteran movie producer who was behind Broadway’s hit musical Wicked, and Jeff Kwatinetz of The Firm.

Oliver Twist is one of Dickens’ most famous works and tells of an orphan boy who moves from a life as an exploited child laborer to being under the wings of Fagin, a leader of a gang of London pickpockets. Hardship, murder and secrets waiting to be revealed follow the boy. (Cube is attached to play Fagin.)

Disney already took a stab of adapting it when it produced the 1988 animated movie Oliver and Company.

Strong is an actor who had key roles on TV’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Mad Men, but is also known for his acclaimed script writing. He won an Emmy for penning Game Change, the HBO movie about the 2008 presidential election that starred Julianne Morris and Ed Harris, and drew praise for Recount, HBO’s take on the controversial 2000 election.

Strong also worked on the last two installments of the Hunger Games franchise, while his most recent work was directing and writing Rebel in the Rye, which starred Nicholas Hoult and Kevin Spacey

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Zachary Levi Is ‘Shazam!’ In Official Teaser Trailer

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Not content with seeing Jason Momoa’s ‘Aquaman’ steal all of the DC glory at Comic-Con this weekend. Zachary Levi is taking a much lighter approach to this often brooding universe with ‘Shazam!’, working like a charm in the fun-filled teaser trailer released by Warner Bros.

Directed by David F. Sandberg, the initial footage focuses on foster kid Billy Batson (Asher Angel), who is chosen to channel superpowers through an ancient wizard, ultimately turning into the titular character with the childish sensibilities intact. Super strength? Flying? He seems more concerned on how he’s meant to pee in his red suit. Yet he’s soon having to use his abilities for good, when faced with Mark Strong’s big bad Dr. Thaddeus Sivana.

‘Shazam!’ swoops into UK cinemas in April 2019.

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Fantastical Debut Trailer For ‘Aquaman’ Welcomes You To Atlantis

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Still reeling from the critical reception which greeted ‘Justice League’ last year. Director James Wan and leading man Jason Momoa are tasked with keeping Warner Bros’ DCEU above water this December with ‘Aquaman’ and after seeing the action-packed first footage straight from Comic-Con, they seem up for the challenge.

Billed as the origin story of the half-human half -Atlantean. We catch glimpses of Arthur Curry’s (Momoa) family unit, most notably Nicole Kidman’s Queen Atlanna and his feisty red-haired ally Mera (Amber Heard), merely teasing his potential king status as he clashes with half-brother Orm (Patrick Wilson), allowing Wan to dial up the underwater spectacle and throw in a goat for good measure.

We’re positively drowning in excitement already. Here’s the trailer…

 

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First ‘Godzilla: King Of The Monsters’ Trailer Is An Atomic Blast

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Well. If you thought there wasn’t enough monster mayhem in Gareth Edwards’ 2014 effort.

Michael Dougherty’s (Krampus) 2018 film seems awfully keen to amend this with the epic debut trailer for ‘Godzilla: King Of The Monsters’, pitting the iconic creature against some of his greatest adversaries. Expect stunning money shots of Mothra, Rodan and a certain three-headed titan by the name King Ghidorah, whilst the human heroics are left to the Russell family consisting of Millie Bobby Brown, Vera Farmiga and Kyle Chandler.

The film roars into cinemas next May.

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