Pop culture roundup
Comics, series and films (including a delicious black comedy) coming soon
From Fan-Con Comic Con to Timothée Chalamet, these stories, and more, caught our eye from the various corners of pop culture this week.
Books & Comics
Events are back, and so too is FanCon, South Africa’s first convention properly dedicated to comics. In a surprising move, FanCon is joining forces with ex-rival, the first-ever Comic Con Cape Town, for a mega-event that will be held from 27 to 29 April 2023 at the DHL Stadium in Cape Town.
Comic Con Cape Town will also include StreetCon, centred on urban and pop culture; and StreamerCon, with a content creator and streaming focus. The event will take place alongside The Cape Town International Animation Festival, which is designed to support and grow the local industry. The debut Comic Con Cape Town, an offshoot of Johannesburg-centred Comic Con Africa, was originally scheduled for April 2020, before the pandemic derailed plans.
The Menu takes “Eat the Rich” to a whole new level, in an Us vs Them game with high stakes and Anya Taylor-Joy caught in the middle. Also starring Nicholas Hoult, Ralph Fiennes, John Leguizamo, Judith Light, Janet McTeer and Hong Chau, The Menu follows a couple (Taylor-Joy and Hoult) who travel to a coastal island to eat at an exclusive restaurant where the chef (Fiennes) has prepared a lavish menu, with some shocking surprises. It arrives in cinemas from 18 November.
Speaking of eating… things, Timothée Chalamet debuted a teaser for his next film with director Luca Guadagnino, Bones And All. Billed as a “cannibal road trip movie” and based on the novel of the same name by Camille DeAngelis, it reunites Chalamet and Guadagnino for the first time since the Oscar-winning Call Me By Your Name.
This unusual coming-of-age romance follows the first love between Maren (Taylor Russell – Escape Room), a young woman learning how to survive on the margins of society, and Lee (Chalamet), an intense and disenfranchised drifter, as they meet and join up for a thousand-mile odyssey which takes them through the back roads, hidden passages, and trap doors of Ronald Reagan’s America. But despite their best efforts, all roads lead back to their terrifying pasts and to a final stand that will determine whether their love can survive their otherness. Bones and All hits North American cinemas on 23 November.
LUCA GUADAGNINO’S BONES AND ALL 🩸🩸🩸 pic.twitter.com/Q1ErygQvGF
— Timothée Chalamet (@RealChalamet) August 10, 2022
If you have been missing high school revenge stories like Heathers and Mean Girls, then the upcoming Netflix film Do Revenge should be right up your alley. Starring Camila Mendes (Riverdale) and Maya Hawke (Stranger Things), Do Revenge is billed as is a subverted Hitchcockian dark comedy featuring the scariest protagonists of all: teenage girls. After a clandestine run-in, Drea (Mendes) and Eleanor (Hawke) team up to go after each other’s tormentors. Do Revenge airs on Netflix on 16 September 2022.
Comedy drama coming-of-age tales are a dime a dozen. But how many have you seen set in 13th-century medieval England?
Based on the award-winning novel by Karen Cushman, Catherine Called Birdy puts Girls’ Lena Dunham in the director’s chair for this tale of Lady Catherine (nicknamed Birdy), a spirited and clever teen who resolves to put off any suitor her parents have lined up for her. Game of Thrones, and future The Last of Us, star Bella Ramsey plays Birdy, while Andrew Scott and Billie Piper are her noble parents, who see their daughter’s marriage as a way to avoid financial ruin. Following a limited cinema release, Catherine Called Birdy is coming to Amazon Prime Video on 7 October.
Via a teaser video on her Twitter account, Lady Gaga has revealed that she is starring alongside Joaquin Phoenix in filmmaker Todd Phillips’ supervillain sequel Joker: Folie à Deux. Gaga will likely play Harley Quinn, a woman attracted to, and then sucked into, the Joker’s vortex of madness. Two other things about Folie à Deux: breaking from the Taxi Driver–esque tone of Joker, the sequel will be a musical. It is also set for release on 4 October 2024.
Speaking of movies and TV series based on DC Comics characters, the Warner Bros and Discovery merger means things are all a bit up in the air at the moment. Warner Bros Discovery CEO David Zaslav commented during last week’s earnings/shareholders’ call about their superhero slate, “We are going to focus on quality. We are not going to release any film before it’s ready.” He also revealed ambitions to create a 10-year integrated plan for the DC onscreen universe, similar to the Marvel model.
What does this mean? Still to be released, although possibly subjected to more reshoots and date shuffles because of the “quality” mandate, are films Shazam! Fury of the Gods, Black Adam, Aquaman 2, the Flash and Blue Beetle. The last one on that list features the DCEU’s first Latino hero.
Meanwhile, a-straight-to-streaming Black Canary movie (with Jurnee Smollett reprising her role from Birds of Prey) is still in development alongside an ambitious Green Lantern series. Likely on the chopping block, however, are the already announced POC takes on Superman and Supergirl, as well as a live-action Static Shock film.
Premiering on Disney+ on Thursday, 8 September is the first UK Original series for the platform, rom-com action thriller Wedding Season. The genre mashup series tells the story of Katie and Stefan who fall for each other at a wedding and begin an affair, despite Katie already having a fiancé. Two months later at Katie’s wedding, her new husband and his entire family are murdered. The police think Stefan did it. Stefan thinks Katie did it. And no one knows for sure what the truth is.
Historical crime tale The Devil in the White City looks to be a change in direction for Keanu Reeves, presenting the Matrix star with his first lead television role. Based on the bestseller by Erik Larson, Devil is set against the backdrop of the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, and offers a fictionalised retelling of real events. The plot sees architect Daniel H Burnham (Reeves) striving to make his mark with the fair’s construction, as America’s first modern serial killer Dr HH Holmes lurks in the shadows.
Devil in the White City will be executive produced by Leonardo DiCaprio (once set for the lead role), his production partner, Jennifer Davisson, and Martin Scorsese. More on the upcoming Hulu series (which means South Africans will be able to watch via Disney+) here.
Finally, one small piece of casting news is that Six Feet Under and Servant star Lauren Ambrose will be joining Season 2 of Yellowjackets, playing the grown-up version of Van. She joins the likes of Christina Ricci, Melanie Lynskey, Tawny Cypress and Juliette Lewis in this darkly comic, sometimes disturbing, survival series about a high school girls’ soccer team stranded in the wilderness in the mid-Nineties – and how their actions there return to haunt the survivors in our present day.
Yellowjackets was one of the breakout critical and commercial successes of 2021. DM/ML
This story was first published on Pfangirl.com