|THE JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICATHE JUSTICE SOCIETYDWAYNE JOHNSONBLACK ADAMAMERICA|
Upon its release last summer, Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw made $759 million worldwide on a reported budget of around $200 million. Those kinds of numbers usually mean that a sequel won’t be too far behind, and now star Dwayne Johnson has confirmed that Hobbs and Shaw 2 is officially in development. Flex so hard that your cast explodes and read his comment below.
Yesterday, Johnson hosted a Q&A on his Instagram Live, and the topic of a Hobbs and Shaw sequel came up. “We are developing now the next film, the next [Hobbs & Shaw] movie, and I’m pretty excited about it…Just gotta figure out the creative right now, and the direction we’re going to go,” he said h/t Collider.
I don’t think anyone actually expected Universal to only make one Hobbs and Shaw film, especially since the first movie was pretty blatant about laying the groundwork for additional stories for those characters. Plus, the main Fast & Furious “Saga” only has two films left before it crosses the final finish line. This year’s F9 was bumped to 2021 due to COVID-19, and it’s currently unclear exactly when Fast 10 will be released. So while “yep, we’re making a sequel to a movie that everyone thought would get a sequel” may not be the most exciting news, I’m choosing to read his comments as a subtle admission that the first Hobbs and Shaw wasn’t as good as it could have been, and an announcement that they’re looking to raise the bar in the sequel – possibly by bringing new blood in on the creative side.
Hobbs and Shaw should have been a home run, but it traded the heart of the Fast and Furious movies for criminally unfunny banter between Johnson and Jason Statham. Sure, it had a few solid action moments, and Ryan Reynolds who’s reuniting with Johnson for the Netflix action film Red Notice may prove to be an entertaining third wheel in a follow-up if his character has a larger role to play. But nearly eight months after Hobbs and Shaw‘s release, my biggest memory of the movie is the disappointment I felt when watching it. Hopefully a re-energized or completely different creative team can course-correct in a sequel, answering the big question left by the first movie’s ending who is running Eteon? and bringing in some electrifying actors to face off against the muscle-bound heroes.
Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson is once again teasing the brute size and strength he will be bringing to the role of comic book villain/anti-hero Black Adam for Warner Bros. and DC. The actor has been on board to play the comic book character for a very, very long time, and now, after years of waiting and wondering, audiences are finally going to get to see The Rock suit-up as the beloved supervillain. Johnson has taken to social media again to display the hard work he has been putting in to look the part, as well as once again stating that big change is coming to the DC Universe.'The hierarchy of power in the DC Universe is about to change. Training and prep for #BlackAdam has been a grind but this passion project outweighs the sacrifices.Truth, justice and the Black Adam way. #eyeforaneye #antihero #blackadam @jonbrandoncruz. Shooting begins this summer.'
Despite him having said this before, it is still not entirely clear what the hierarchy of power changing actually means, but looking at the sheer size of Dwayne Johnson in this image that accompanies the caption it surely means something quite scary for the rest of the DC Universe roster. When Black Adam does make his debut, it certainly sounds like Johnson believes he will be the biggest, mightiest super-powered being we have seen in the franchise so far. Simply the fact he is being played by The Rock suggests that this will likely be the case.
It is interesting to note that Johnson is referencing the DC Universe at all, as well as putting a little twist on Superman's catchphrase of 'truth, justice, and the American way'. The DC Universe has been a confusing beast for the last few years, with many movies paying no attention to the wider goings-on, though Black Adam arch-enemy Shazam! did feature a small cameo from The Man of Steel suggesting that the three characters do inhabit the same world despite the franchise stepping away from the Marvel Cinematic Universe's strategy.
While we still don't really even know what the Black Adam movie will be about, it is likely that it will act as an origin story for the character and how he obtained his powers. There are also expectations that the movie will be a sort of prequel to Shazam!, as the characters share many similarities and, of course, become enemies later on down the line. There are many who are hoping that Black Adam will become the DC Universe's new big-bad, and will cross paths not only with Billy Batson, but with the likes of Superman, Wonder Woman, and The Flash as well.
Seeing The Rock as a superhero seems to perfect that it is quite ridiculous that it has taken this long to come to fruition, but thankfully Black Adam is finally going before cameras this summer after years of waiting, with the movie scheduled to hit theaters in December of 2021. This comes to us from Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson's official Instagram account.
Though “The Plot Against America” took its time to get going, it’s full steam ahead for David Simon’s Philip Roth adaptation by Episode 4 — but to what end? With just two episodes to go, the drama has certainly flared up: The Levin familial bonds are being pushed to the brink as Sandy falls increasingly under Lindbergh’s spell, with the help of Aunt Evelyn and her new boyfriend Rabbi Bengelsdorf. The lines have been drawn, and it’s not looking good for either side. While this was by far the most exciting episode so far, it still feels as though Simon is obligingly following Roth’s outline rather than forging his own path.
In both the novel and the series “The Plot Against America,” there’s an unmentioned but implicit rhetorical question reaching out from beyond the page and screen. To borrow from the musical “Cabaret,” one of the only pieces of pop culture to artfully grapple with this unthinkable dilemma: What would you do? If a fascist were elected president of your country, if your sister started dating one of his shills, if your son was secretly sketching his visage by flashlight — how would you behave? Would you flee to Canada, organize the resistance, or stick your head in the sand and hope for the best?
The fourth episode hones in on these questions with laser-like precision, enjoying the fruits of the preceding three episodes that felt, both in retrospect and in real time, mostly like set-up. Having returned from his “Just Folks” adventure in Kentucky, a Hitler Youth-esque recruiting tool of Rabbi Bengelsdorf’s John Turturro design, Sandy has quite literally become the poster child for assimilationist Jews. Evelyn Winona Ryder proudly features him in a brochure for the program, against Bess’ Zoe Kazan wishes.
Sandy’s transformation has been building since the pilot episode, which ended with him surreptitiously sketching Charles Lindbergh from of a newspaper clipping. Having planted the seeds deliberately, the show earns its most uncomfortable moment so far when Sandy spits at his parents, calling them “ghetto Jews — narrow-minded ghetto Jews.” His transformation is complete. When Bess slaps him across the face, it’s hard not to let out a silent cheer. Your Jewish firstborn becoming a Nazi sympathizer may be the rare instance when a kid deserves a good wallop.
Less effective is a Shabbas dinner argument between Herman Morgan Spector and Bengelsdorf, where Herman puts aside any last shred of civility to tell the Rabbi what he really thinks of his man Lindbergh. Maybe it’s the fact that only the men are talking while the women make sidelong glances of...