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Entertainment minute: ‘Fast & Furious’, ‘Men In Black’ spinoff, ‘Rush Hour 4’ in development

We’ve got a jam-packed entertainment minute for today, so let’s get started without any further delays…
LOS ANGELES — Rumors regarding another film in the Fast and the Furious series have been confirmed as true, according to reports from The Hollywood Reporter and IGN.

The Hollywood Reporter states that the new film, which is a spinoff from the original series, is set to hit theaters July 26, 2019. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Jason Statham are expected to star in the film and will be written by series scriptwriter Chris Morgan. The story focuses on Security Service agent Luke Hobbs (played by Johnson) and reformed villain Deckard Shaw (played by Statham).

Fast & Furious is one of Universal’s most beloved properties, and we handle every decision we make surrounding this franchise with great care,” Universal Pictures chairman Donna Langley told THR. “The global brand of Fast & Furious is strong and full of iconic characters, and we look forward to continuing to build on the film that started it all, as well as expanding into different narratives beginning with our first spinoff.”

The announcement comes as there has been an official delay for Fast and The Furious 9, which was scheduled for opening in 2019, but series regular Tyrese Gibson had recently aired his grievances about the delay on Instagram, making some sarcastic quips about Johnson. The film will not be out in theaters until 2020.

Justin Lin may return to helm the ninth entry in the series, having taken a break following Fast and the Furious 6.

Series star Michelle Rodriguez said last month that the series must “evolve or die” in regards to its poor treatment of female characters.

Part of this report was submitted by IGN games and entertainment editor Lucy O’Brien from Sydney and The Hollywood Reporter writer Borys Kit. Their articles have been linked in this report.


LOS ANGELES — Sony Pictures is not only developing a Men in Black spinoff, but they have sold the rights to iconic video game character Sonic the Hedgehog.

The MiB spinoff will focus on new characters, as franchise stars Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, who starred in the first three films, are not expected to appear in the spinoff.

Based on reports from The Hollywood Reporter and Deadline, the project is currently being scripted by Iron Man and Transformers: The Last Knight writers Matt Holloway and Art Marcum and Steven Spielberg has been pegged as executive producer with Walter F. Parkes and Laurie MacDonald named as associate producers.

“It’s so rare to get to the end of the script and know you’re holding a movie in your hands, but Art and Matt have written a spinoff that somehow is true to the core of the MiB world and yet expands the franchise to a fresh new place,” Parkes said while speaking with Deadline.

The project, MiB 23, involves a crossover between the Men in Black and 21 Jump Street film franchises, with 21JS stars Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill expected to star in the film.

The film is expected to release the same day as Lionsgate’s John Wick: Chapter 3 on May 17, 2019.

Sony Pictures recently sold the rights to iconic video game character Sonic the Hedgehog to Paramount Studios, which in the process of developing a film based on the character.

Variety confirms that Jeff Fowler will be directing the film, with Deadpool director Tim Miller serving as executive producer and Neal H. Moritz as associate producer.

The film was originally announced in June 2016 by video gaming company Sega, who handles the video game series, as the franchise celebrates the 25th anniversary of the blue speedster.

The first title, Sonic the Hedgehog, was released by Sega in 1991 for the Sega Genesis and the overall series has sold more than 360 million copies across various gaming platforms. Sega’s most recent game, Sonic Mania, was released for Xbox One, Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch and PC in August.

Part of this report was submitted by UPI entertainment writer Wade Sheridan. Complete articles regarding both stories can be viewed here and here.


LOS ANGELES — Jackie Chan confirmed that there will be a fourth installment in production of the Rush Hour franchise, with co-star Chris Tucker also returning.

An interview with Power 106 Los Angeles on Thursday revealed several scripts for Rush Hour 4 were rejected in the past seven years before reaching to an agreement Wednesday.

When asked on when development will begin, Chan stated there will “…be a second draft” by the end of the month and begin development and production next year “if Chris Tucker agrees.”

It has been nearly a decade since Rush Hour 3 debuted in theaters in 1998 and Chan felt it was important for him and Tucker to make the fourth film while they still can.

Chan also noted that it is “not about the money,” but the fourth film is something that “it’s about time to make.”

Chan, 63, joked about the stars’ ages, as Tucker turned 46 in August: “Otherwise, Rush Hour 4, we’re old men.”

Part of this report was submitted by UPI writer Daniel Uria. The link to the original article has been included.

About the Author

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Jake Leonard is the editor-in-chief of Heartland Newsfeed. He is general manager of Heartland Internet Media Networks, an active contributor to the Nokomis Free Press-Progress/The Morrisonville Times and serves as website administrator for Pana News, Inc. He also serves as chairman of Tri-Counties Libertarian Party, deputy communications director for the Libertarian Party of Illinois and as chairman/co-founder of the Libertarian Party Millennial Caucus.

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Entertainment minute: ‘Fast & Furious’, ‘Men In Black’ spinoff, ‘Rush Hour 4’ in development