Jena Malone officially cast as Johanna Mason in ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’

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Jena Malone officially cast as Johanna Mason in ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’

Jena Malone has officially entered the Hunger Games arena. Lionsgate announced Monday morning that Malone would be playing the role of Johanna Mason in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.

Malone’s involvement was rumored weeks ago, when it was reported she’d been offered the role. Just last night at the 2012 Teen Choice Awards, actor Josh Hutcherson commented on how much he looked forward to working with Malone.

Johanna Mason is the surly and temperamental female tribute from District 7 in Catching Fire, who later becomes an important ally to Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta (Hutcherson). The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is set to begin filming in September and will be released November 22, 2013.

Malone’s past credits include Sucker Punch, The Messenger, and Into the Wild. She most recently appeared in the Emmy nominated History Channel miniseries Hatfields & McCoys.

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Z World Detroit: Turning abandoned city into a zombie theme park

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Credits: Z World Detroit

Z World Detroit: Turning abandoned city into a zombie theme park

Detroit doesn’t have a lot going for it these days. Despite the auto industry boom of last century, Eminem, and plenty of good people who still call Detroit their home, the city is rapidly becoming a ghost town, with whole neighborhoods abandoned and crumbling into disrepair. It looks almost… apocalyptic.

Which is why it’s the perfect place to set an interactive zombie apocalypse playground. Enter Z World Detroit.

View slideshow:The zombies of Denver

Think about it as a large-scale, overnight game of Humans vs. Zombies (the zombie drill popular on college campuses), set in an abandoned section of Detroit. Teams of players will have to run for their lives from an ever-expanding group of zombies, find shelter and supplies, and last the night in this spooky post-apocalyptic playground while hordes of the undead are moaning for their sweet and succulent flesh. If you get caught by the zombies, the fun isn’t over. Instead, you join their slavering, sadistic ranks and hunt down your friends for the remainder of the game.

Where do I get in line?

Detroit’s status as a ghost town is not news to its mayor, who recently encouraged citizens to come up with creative uses for the empty and abandoned spaces in the city. Z World Detroit is just one way that those forlorn and falling-apart areas could be used. Not only would it take Detroit’s misfortune and turn it into a fun and positive experience (yes, we know zombies are not everyone’s idea of “fun and positive,” but work with us here), but it would be a way to attract visitors to the area. And we all know what enthusiastic tourists can do to an economy.

Watch a video about the plans for Z World Detroit here.

You can support Z World Detroit by donating to the effort at Indiegogo.com. Think of this as the first (of hopefully many) zombie destination tourism spots.

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Graphic novel recommendations for summer reading 2012 part 4

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Credits: Dark Horse Comics

Graphic novel recommendations for summer reading 2012

As the days of summer begin to wind down and the presence of fall looms ever large on the horizon, taking advantage of vacation down time becomes priority one. But you’ve already taken that cross country road trip to visit the relatives you say? Already used the down time to make those home improvements around the house and your days are just empty hours filled with nothing to do? Well, that is why we are here to give you a few recommendations on how you can spend some time engaged with a good graphic novel that will transport you to the farthest reaches of your imagination. From capes to criminals, graphic novels offer something for every type of reader.

First up Marvel Comics offers up a crime driven melodrama from Harvey Award winning writer Ed Brubaker and Scream Award winning artist Sean Phillips called Criminal: Coward TPB Vol. 1 Fans of hard boiled/noir writing need look no further than this great entry to the first few issues of this series. Take a walk on the seedy underbelly of the underworld with the main character Leo, a man who can plan the perfect heist , but only if the risk is truly worth the reward. Written with a stylistic flourish and enhanced by charismatic art, this series delivers a gut punch with it’s gritty drama that will often have you strangely pulling for the underdog (who happens to be embroiled in criminal activity) Fans of crime fiction need look no further than this one for an engaging read.

Image Comics Age of Bronze: A Thousand Ships Vol. 1 TPB is a multiple Eisner Award nominee in the categories of Best New Series, Best Continuing Series, and Best Writer/Artist and it is easy to see why.  Witness this re-telling of the tale of Paris and Helen of Troy’s love story act as the spark that will ignite a war that is now legendary unfold in this prelude to tragedy. Filled with a level of such stirring emotion, it reminds readers of the humanity that lies behind historical events. History fans should check out this fictional retelling of the tragic events that led to the Trojan War. Creator Eric Shanower‘s crafting is top notch on this endeavor.

Vertigo Comics: American Vampire Volume 1 TPB collects issues #1-5 of the creative series and offers up two stories told by two celebrated storytellers. The first, most recently known for his incredible run on DC Comics Batman titles with the “Court Of Owls” story arc, is Scott Snyder. Snyder’s story tells the tale of  a young woman brutally murdered by vampires in 920’s Los Angeles who comes back for revenge against the monsters who turned her into one of them. The second is created by the master of horror Stephen King and weaves a tale set against the back drop of the Wild West that introduces the first American vampire who happens to the deadliest of the species. These instances of genre bending storytelling is a lot like finding two great taste that go together and best illustrate this maxim. With art contributed by industry superstar Rafael Albuquerque, this one should find a spot into your reading queue.

Dark Horse Comics: Concrete Volume 1 Depths TPB brings to the table a different approach to the superhero genre. Whereas most “Capes” titles have heroes who are often larger than life and difficult to identify with, Concrete is of a different breed. Things From Another World beautifully captures the heart of this hero and sums him up with “Part man, part…rock? Over seven feet tall and weighing over a thousand pounds, he is known as Concrete but is in reality the mind of one Ronald Lithgow, trapped inside a shell of stone, a body that allows him to walk unaided on the ocean’s floor or survive the crush of a thousand tons of rubble in a collapsed mineshaft…but prevents him from feeling the touch of a human hand.” Created by the imagination of Paul Chadwick this series has won a total of five Eisner Awards, three Harvey Awards and earned a spot on GQ’s “The 20 Graphic Novels You Should Read” list.  Richly balanced panels filled with humor, heartbreak and humanity all coalesce into a saga that showcases a hero who is more human than most.

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Watch epic ‘Walking Dead’ season 3 preview from Comic-Con

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Credits: AMCTV.com

Watch epic ‘Walking Dead’ season 3 preview from Comic-Con

During the mobbed “The Walking Dead” panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2012, AMC screened an extended preview of the third season of their insanely popular comic-book-to-TV zombie drama.

The preview did not disappoint. In fact, it was the most epic, dramatic, exciting, jaw-dropping preview of the series so far, giving more than a hint of what is to come for Rick Grimes and the survivors of “The Walking Dead.”

Watch the epic preview of “The Walking Dead” season three.

The preview sets up two story-lines that will eventually intersect on the show. The first is of Rick, Hershel, and the other survivors who managed to meet up after escaping the walker-infested Greene farm. They find a high-security prison and systematically clear it of walkers so they can take advantage of its resources and live in relative safety.

The other story-line follows Andrea and Michonne, her sword-wielding rescuer from the season two finale, as they fight to survive on their own in the wasteland that was once Georgia. The pair is abducted and brought to a fortified town called Woodbury by a man who calls himself the Governor.

And thus is set up our major conflict for season three: The Governor and Woodbury vs. Rick Grimes and the prison. And somewhere along the line, Merle Dixon comes back with a fancy new zombie-killing arm attachments.

Watch the preview of “The Walking Dead” season three… and try to contain your exuberance.

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New comic book releases 7/18/12

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Credits: Marvel Comics

New comic book releases 7/18/12

New comic book releases for the week of 7/18/12. Here we are post SDCC 2012, one of the biggest and best for the annual event. Industry announcements were made regarding upcoming events in the comic industry and related popular culture. A few Con high-lights included the revelation that Neil Gaiman will return to produce a “prequel” of sorts to his seminal work on “The Sandman” is in the works was news that was well received. Also fans of Marvel ComicsThe Punisher” were treated to a surprise by actor Thomas Jane in the form of a fan film that captured the spirit of the character in aces. Cos-play was in full swing as fans dressed as their favorite characters and displayed a range of creative capabilities of attendees (check out the slide show for a sampling of some of the cool sights of this incredible event). Adventurous attendees participated in the “Walking Dead“obstacle course (check out the video to get a sense of the mayhem that unfolded at this popular activity) But, as always, the true heart of Comic Con is the opportunity to interact with comic industry creators/innovators such as Orlando Harding (writer and creator of Revolution Comics: NightStalker, which was reviewed here), Daniel Cooney (writer and creator of Red Eye Press: Atomic Yeti and the Valentine series), Tim Daniel (writer and creator of Image Comics: Enormous) and Michael Davis (Milestone Media co-founder and mediator of the Black Panel) It is the accessibility of these types of innovators that allows fans an opportunity to really connect with those who create some of popular cultures most enduring images and experiences.

You would think that coming off such a packed week, the comic industry might slow down to catch its breath, but this is not the case. We’ve got some incredible reads this week in the form of titles from some of the industries’ best. Over at Marvel Comics, we have the release of Captain Marvel #1 (creative team Kelly Sue DeConnick, Dexter Soy, and Ed McGuinness). DC Comics hits Wednesday hard with one of its staple titles Justice League #11 and the continuation of the origin of SHAZAM! (creative team: Geoff Johns and Jim Lee) Image Comics contributes with the next issue in the ongoing title Saga #5 (creative team of Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples) Lastly, Valiant Entertainment strong showing continues with X-O Manowar #3 (creative team: Robert Venditti, Cary Nord, Jelena Kevic-Djurdjevic). So until next week stack them high and enjoy the read!

 

DC/VERTIGO

BATMAN BEYOND UNLIMITED #6 $3.99
BATWING TP VOL 01 THE LOST KINGDOM $14.99
BATWOMAN #11 $2.99
BEFORE WATCHMEN SILK SPECTRE #2 $3.99
BIRDS OF PREY #11 $2.99
BLUE BEETLE #11 $2.99
CAPTAIN ATOM #11 $2.99
CATWOMAN #11 $2.99
DC UNIVERSE PRESENTS #11 $2.99
DOMINIQUE LAVEAU VOODOO CHILD #5 $2.99
FABLES #119 $2.99
GREEN LANTERN CORPS #11 $2.99
HELLBLAZER #293 $2.99
JUSTICE LEAGUE #11 $3.99
LEGION OF SUPER HEROES #11 $2.99
MEN OF WAR TP VOL 01 UNEASY COMPANY $19.99
NIGHTWING #11 $2.99
RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS #11 $2.99
SHOWCASE PRESENTS RIP HUNTER TIME MASTER TP VOL 01 $19.99
SUPERGIRL #11 $2.99
UNWRITTEN #39 $2.99
WONDER WOMAN #11 $2.99
YOUNG JUSTICE #18 $2.99

MARVEL/ICON

AVENGERS ACADEMY #33 AVX $2.99
AVENGERS VS X-MEN #8 AVX $3.99
CAPTAIN AMERICA AND BUCKY TP LIFE OF BUCKY BARNES $14.99
CAPTAIN MARVEL #1 $2.99
COUNTER X TP X-FORCE RAGE WAR $19.99
DAREDEVIL #15 $2.99
DARK TOWER GUNSLINGER MAN IN BLACK #2 $3.99
ENDERS GAME FORMIC WARS SILENT STRIKE PREM HC $24.99
FANTASTIC FOUR #608 $2.99
FF BY JONATHAN HICKMAN TP VOL 02 $19.99
GHOST RIDER TP COMPLETE SERIES BY ROB WILLIAMS $29.99
HERC TP COMPLETE SERIES BY PAK AND LENTE $29.99
INFERNAL MAN-THING #2 $3.99
INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #521 $3.99
JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #641 $2.99
MARVEL ZOMBIES DESTROY #5 $3.99
MMW GOLDEN AGE MARVEL COMICS HC VOL 07 $74.99
MMW GOLDEN AGE MARVEL COMICS HC VOL 07 DM VAR ED 183 $74.99
NEW MUTANTS #46 $2.99
SECRET SERVICE #3 $2.99
SPIDER-MAN COMPLETE BEN REILLY EPIC TP BOOK 05 $39.99
SPIDER-MAN ENDS OF EARTH HC $29.99
UNCANNY X-MEN #16 AVX $3.99
UNTOLD TALES OF PUNISHER MAX #2 $3.99
WOLVERINE #309 $4.99
X-FACTOR #240 $2.99
X-MEN #32 $3.99

DARK HORSE

ALABASTER WOLVES #4 $3.50
BALTIMORE DR LESKOVARS REMEDY #2 $3.50
BLACKSAD SILENT HELL HC $19.99
BPRD HELL ON EARTH DEVILS ENGINE #3 $3.50
CONCRETE THREE UNEASY PIECES ONE SHOT $2.99
DARK HORSE PRESENTS #14 $7.99
FATIMA THE BLOOD SPINNERS #2 $3.99
RESET #4 $3.50
STAR WARS DARTH VADER GHOST PRISON #3 $3.50
ACTIVITY #7 $3.50

IMAGE

CARBON GREY VOL 2 #1 CVR A EVANS & LOH $3.99
CARBON GREY VOL 2 #1 CVR B NGUYEN $3.99
DARKNESS #105 $2.99
GLORY #28 $2.99
SAGA #2 3RD PTG $2.99
SAGA #5 $2.99
SUNSET HC $19.99

MISCELLANEOUS PUBLISHERS

ADVENTURE TIME #6 $3.99
ADVENTURES OF VENUS HC $9.99
AMERICAN ELF VOL 04 SKETCHBOOK DIARIES JAMES KOCHALKA $24.95
BLOODY CHESTER GN $18.99
COBRA ONGOING #15 $3.99
DANGER GIRL GI JOE #1 $3.99
ELRIC THE BALANCE LOST #11 $3.99
HELLRAISER TP VOL 03 $14.99
JACK DAVIS DRAWING AMERICAN POP CULTURE HC $49.99
JACK KIRBY COLLECTOR #59 $10.95
JENNIFER BLOOD ANNUAL #1 $4.99
KISS #2 $3.99
MARS ATTACKS #2 $3.99
MARVEL SUPER HEROES VS VILLAINS EXPLOSIVE POP UP RIVALRIES $29.95
NIGHT OF 1000 WOLVES #3 $3.99
NOT THE ISRAEL MY PARENTS PROMISED ME GN $24.95
PROPHECY #2 $3.99
RACHEL RISING #9 $3.99
RADIOACTIVE MAN HC VOL 01 RADIOACTIVE REPOSITORY $25.99
RED SONJA #67 $3.99
SECRET HISTORY OF DB COOPER #5 $3.99
SHADOW SHOW ALL NEW STORIES CELEBRATION OF RAY BRADBURY SC $15.99
SIMPSONS COMICS #192 $2.99
SPIKE COMPLETE SERIES TP $29.99
STAR TREK ONGOING #11 $3.99
STAR TREK TNG DOCTOR WHO ASSIMILATION #2 2ND PTG $3.99
STAR TREK TNG DOCTOR WHO ASSIMILATION #3 $3.99
STUFF OF LEGEND OMNIBUS HC VOL 01 $29.99

SUPERNATURALIST SC $9.99
THE SPIDER #3 $3.99
VAMPIRELLA #19 $3.99
WAREHOUSE 13 TP VOL 01 $19.99
WARLORD OF MARS DEJAH THORIS #13 $3.99
X-O MANOWAR (ONGOING) #1 3RD PTG $3.99
X-O MANOWAR (ONGOING) #3 $3.99

KIDS COMICS

ARCHIE DOUBLE DIGEST #231 $3.99
JUGHEAD #214 $2.99
JUGHEADS DOUBLE DIGEST #183 $3.99
SONIC UNIVERSE #42 $2.99

MANGA

AFTERSCHOOL CHARISMA TP VOL 06 $12.99
CASE CLOSED GN VOL 43 $9.99
OOKU INNER CHAMBERS GN VOL 07 $12.99
WANDERING SON HC VOL 03 $19.99

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Recap of the ‘Firefly’ 10th anniversary panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2012

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Credits: EW.com

Recap of the ‘Firefly’ 10th anniversary panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2012

On Friday Comic-Con attendees were treated to a panel in honor of the ten year anniversary of Joss Whedon‘s “Firefly.” Fans camped outside of Hall H the night before, eagerly awaiting their chance to see the cast and crew of the beloved Space Western, and were rewarded with a visit from Joss Whedon himself during the wee hours of the morning.

The panel was moderated by Jeff Jensen of Entertainment Weekly, and featured “Firefly” writer Jose Molina, showrunner Tim Minear, cast members Nathan Fillion (Malcolm Reynolds), Alan Tudyk (Hoban Washburn), Summer Glau (River Tam), Sean Maher (Simon Tam), and Adam Baldwin (Jayne Cobb), and “Firefly” creator Joss Whedon.

The panel had many laughs, many “truthsome” moments, and some genuine heart-warming sentimentality. During the panel, several clips from the show were screened. You can watch video of the panel here.

During the panel, Whedon explained his inspiration for the show. “I just wanted to make something that felt real like a piece of history,” as opposed to the stereotypical science fiction story, Whedon said. “I wanted to tell an American immigrant story.”

One of the highlights of the panel were Nathan Fillion and Alan Tudyk performing a hypothetical scene from “Firefly” as a radio show. Another was when Whedon revealed that there would be more of the bestselling “Firefly” comic books from Dark Horse, including stories from both the characters’ past (like “The Shepherd’s Tale”) and their future (like “Those Left Behind”).

At one point Sean Maher told Whedon, “I think you might have a fever.” To which Nathan Fillion responded, “And the only cure is more ‘Firefly.'” Raucous hilarity ensued.

There were also touching moments of genuine emotion during the panel. Nathan Fillion told the audience, “When ‘Firefly’ died I thought it was the worst thing that could possibly happen, but what I realize now, ten years later looking out at this room, is that the worst thing that could have happened is if it had stayed dead.”

Both Whedon and Fillion teared up during the questions from fans, especially when one fan asked how season one would have ended. But it was the standing ovation Whedon received at the end of the panel that really got the tears flowing.

Whedon was asked what the fans of “Firefly” mean to him. He struggled to put his thoughts into words, and as he struggled, the audience rose to their feet and cheered him on. Finally, after the standing ovation died down, Whedon left the audience with this:

“Only an idiot would try to follow that with a sentence. When you come out of a great movie, you feel like you’re in that world. When you’re telling a story, you’re trying to connect to people in a particular way. It’s about inviting them into a world. The way you’ve inhabited this world, this universe, you have become part of it. When I see you guys, I don’t think the show is off the air. I think there’s spaceships and horses — the story is alive.”

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SDCC ‘Twilight’ fans get sneak peek of both ‘Breaking Dawn 2’ and ‘The Host’

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Credits: Summit Films promo at SDCC

SDCC ‘Twilight’ fans get sneak peek of both ‘Breaking Dawn 2’ and ‘The Host’

[Thursday] night at the San Diego Comic Con,Twilight” Fans were in for a double dose of sneak peak and surprises. They not only got to see the first seven minutes of the new “Twilight: Breaking Dawn 2” movie but also a new clip of Stephenie Meyer’s new science fiction book to movie adaptation “The Host”.

The panel included Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, Nikki Reed, Kellan Lutz, Elizabeth Reaser, Mackenzie Foy, and Stephenie Meyer.

The panel opened with the first seven minutes of the final installment of the “Twilight” series, “Breaking Dawn part 2“.

According to fans that were there, the movie clip picks up where “Breaking Dawn, part 1” left off. Simply, Bella awakes as a vampire and begins to realize her powers.

The clip included the one clip that has been shown about Bella and Edward talking about the fact that they are now the same temperature. They then realize that she needs to feed and of course there is a snag in the fact that as she is chasing a deer, a man rock climbing falls and cuts himself. She then sniffs the blood and turns towards him only to have Edward stop her and then chase on after the deer.

It then flips to Jacob meeting the new Bella and Bella mentioning that he stinks and then he asks her if she wants to meet her daughter.

The clip then ended with the Cullens trying to show Bella how to look human before she meets her father again.

After this clip, Meyer entered the stage and began to show a clip of her other movie based on her other book series, “The Host”. A great way to get her already established fan base to pick up this new movie after “Twilight” ends in November. “The Host” is set to release in March of 2013.

Are you excited about the last “Twilight” movie?

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