20th July 2012

It's The Dark Knight Rises week, as the most anticipated movie of the year arrives in cinemas. Nolan's final Batman movie is also thunderously complex and entertaining. The cast and crew paraded up 'red carpets' in New York and London, including Christian Bale and Morgan Freeman; Christopher Nolan and Joseph Gordon-Levitt; Anne Hathaway; Gary Oldman and Tom Hardy; plus Michael Caine, Marion Cotillard and Liam Neeson.

Joseph Gordon Levitt at the London Premiere of Dark Knight Rises

As a result, distributors are giving the next few weeks a wide berth at the box office, so look for records to fall. Batman's only competition will be documentaries (like Revenge of the Electric Car) and French films (Kristin Scott Thomas' thriller In Your Hands in the UK and Daniel Auteuil's gem The Well-digger's Daughter in the US).

But there are some intriguing films on their way. The comedy Goats launched its trailer this week, showing David Duchovny as a beardy mountain man who imparts fatherly wisdom to a 15-year-old. Originally shown at Sundance in January, it looks a bit silly. But the cast includes Vera Farmiga, Keri Russell and Ty Burrell, and it's made by the producers of The Kids Are All Right.

We also had our first teaser this week for Sam Raimi's Oz the Great and Powerful, starring James Franco as the young wizard. This gorgeous trailer is structured like the classic Wizard of Oz, with a black and white prologue and tornado, then a transition to vivid colour in Oz. The film opens next spring.

James Franco in Oz The Great and Powerful


There's more Wizard of Oz prequel action on the way, with news that Stephen Daldry will direct a big screen version of the Broadway musical Wicked, which recounts the early life of the story's various good and evil witches. Expect lots of casting rumours about this one, with Lea Michelle probably leading the charge after belting a few Wicked themes on Glee.

In other movie news, Chris Hemsworth has just signed on to star in Steven Spielberg's next film Robopocalypse, a sci-fi thriller set in the aftermath of a technology uprising. The script by Drew Goddard is based on Daniel H. Wilson's epic novel, which Spielberg was so excited about that he agreed to direct the film before the book was even published this June.

And finally, Daniel Radcliffe landed roles this week in two rather odd movies. First he'll star in the Canadian sex-romp comedy The F Word with Zoe Kazan, and then he'll play a rape-murder suspect who sprouts horns on his head in the cleverly titled supernatural thriller Horns.

Rich Cline

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