Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Females are invading The Big Screen

It seems that the status quo in popular culture is shifting. Within the last five or so years, we have seen a black Spiderman, a gay Green Lantern, a female Thor, a black Captain America and perhaps other developments I can’t think of right now. I love it, I don’t mind taking some old pop culture icons and tweaking them a bit, but I know some people do. I would say get over it because it is not going to change. It is not like the black Spiderman in the Ultimate Marvel Universe right now is Peter Parker, his name is Miles Morales and there is a specific reason for why he is Spiderman in that universe currently.

But this is all another argument for another day. What I really wanted to discuss were the two movies announced yesterday, two soon-to-be major blockbusters being forwarded by all-female casts. It was announced yesterday that an all-female “Ghostbusters” movie was in the works. Not only that, but there will also be a all-female superhero movie set in the shared universe of “The Amazing Spiderman.” I think if these ideas are anything, they are highly ambitious, but I think we need films to be more ambitious, even if they are Hollywood system films.

The film I am most excited about is the all-female “Ghostbusters” film. I have been a fan of “Ghostbusters” all my life, it is a movie that has defined my life. It is a film that has a very sentimental value for me, so anything “Ghostbusters” related forces me to raise an eyebrow automatically. I have been burned by “Ghostbusters 3” news that went absolutely nowhere over the years. If Sigourney Weaver returned as Dana Barrett to lead an all-female Ghostbusters team, I’d be totally ecstatic, but that doesn't seem in the cards. The studio wants a reboot it seems. It’s okay, because it seems not a lot of people see the potential in this idea. If the film is headlined by Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens or any other Disney stars, then I am not interested. They need to be smart with their casting, and if they are then the film has potential to be awesome. I am sure that Melissa McCarthy is an obvious choice, but what about a cast which includes Tina Fey, Kristen Wiig, Rashida Jones and Maya Rudolf? Or how about Christina Applegate, Ellen Page, Aubrey Plaza, Allison Pill, Amy Poehler, Amber Stevens, Brie Larson, Rebel Wilson, Regina Hall and Isla Fisher? If you want some more left-field casting ideas, how about Maggie Gyllenhaal, Anne Hathaway or Keira Knightly? The possibilities are endless, and they should be indulged and I am curious to see how this pans out.

I am not so sure how I feel about the female superhero movie set in the current Spiderman movie universe. I have nothing against seeing female superheroes, in fact, I believe there are a ton of great female superheroes that have not popped up in any movie yet, and I find that sad. My issue is with Sony and Paramount, they seem to have no idea what to do with their properties. After two “Amazing Spiderman” movies I am convinced that Sony has no understanding of Spiderman, but they desperately want to hold on to him because they want all the money they can from him. Sony wants a “Sinister Six” movie, a kind of anti-Avengers that revolve around the villains teaming up against Spiderman, and they also want this all-female superhero movie. Andrew Garfield doesn’t have many movies left on his contract though, and the characters introduced into the Spiderman movies that would show up in either of these films are so flatly examined that I fear films with them would not work. Sony has proven that they don’t know how to handle their characters. It seems that they look over at Disney and DC and they think “shared universe,” forgetting what makes these characters work in that fashion to begin with.

I am curious for “Ghostbusters” and I am nervous about Spiderman. One thing I will say though, is that I appreciate the effort.


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