Friday, May 28, 2010

News - 05/28/10...

Cartoon Net planning 'Green Lantern' series

Cartoon Network is planning a Green Lantern animated series.

Phil Kent, chairman and CEO of Time Warner's Turner networks unit, showed a slide with some of Cartoon Network's original programming here Thursday at TW's investor day.

It included the title "Green Lantern: The Animated Series."

Warner Bros. chairman and CEO Barry Meyer later in the day mentioned this as an example of increasing collaboration and coordination between his unit and Turner. He said the Cartoon Network show is based on the DC Comics character and Warner's "Green Lantern" movie, scheduled for a June 17, 2011 release.

The TV series is expected to launch in the second year after the film release.

(Thanks Heat Vision)

Prince of Persia, Sex and the City Seek Shrek’s Crown

It’s gals vs. gamers at the box office as the Memorial Day weekend kicks off the summer movie season in style.

On the gamer side of things is Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, the Disney-distributed action film based on the popular video game series. The film is set to open in about 3,500 cinemas.

Directed by Harry Potter alumnus Mike Newell and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Ben Kingsley and Alfred Molina, Prince of Persia also features extensive visual effects from Cinesite – London, The Moving Picture Co., Double Negative, Framestor, LipSync Post, NVisage, Cube Effects and Nvisible.

Released Thursday, Warner Bros.’ Sex and the City 2 opened in just under 3,500 cinemas. The film grossed $3 million in midnight screenings on Wednesday and looks to be a challenger for the weekend’s top spot.

DreamWorks Animation’s Shrek Forever After enters its second weekend and will be tested on its staying power after it opened with $71 million last weekend. That number was less than the previous two installments in the series, but the film could follow the trend set this year by other stereoscopic 3D movies and hang on to more of its audience than non-3D films.

Other films still in play for the holiday weekend are Iron Man 2, Robin Hood and DreamWorks Animation’s other 3D feature How to Train Your Dragon.

(Thanks Animation Magazine)

Art Linkletter (1912-2010)

When I heard the news that Art Linkletter had passed away, I didn’t think that was something to mention on Cartoon Brew. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized I was wrong. Mr. Linkletter was one of the most popular TV hosts of the 1950s and 60s. He was a personal friend of Walt Disney’s, and co-hosted the opening ceremonies of Disneyland on live TV in 1955. His celebrity was such that he was caricatured in Warner Bros. cartoons, and Universal Pictures used him to introduce the Russian animated feature The Snow Queen in a live action prologue for their 1959 U.S. theatrical release (btw, does this footage still exist?). Charles Schulz illustrated and Walt Disney contributed an introduction to his best-selling book, Kids Say The Darnest Things (click thumbnails below).

So here’s to you, Art Linkletter. Rest in peace. You entertained the public and made many (especially us baby-boomer kids) very happy with all you did.

(Thanks Cartoon Brew)

Cartoon Brew TV: Building Friends for Business

It’s time for another episode in our special film series “The Modern Art of Gene Deitch.” This week, we’re presenting Building Friends for Business, an industrial film for Swift & Company. The 1949 film is among the first projects that Deitch ever directed and an example of his early modernist approach to animation design and filmmaking. Click over to Brew TV to watch Gene Deitch’s Building Friends for Business.

(Thanks Cartoon Brew)

Geriatric Panther

This is what I’ve always imagined living in a retirement community would be like.

(Thanks Cartoon Brew)

Joe Murray’s Kickstarter Success

I wrote last month about the plan of Rocko’s Modern Life creator Joe Murray to raise $16,800 in 45 days to complete his animation project Frog in a Suit. Using the crowd-funding site Kickstarter, Murray reached that goal yesterday, with nine fundraising days to spare.

Murray’s success is significant because he’s the first creator from the established world of TV animation to appeal directly to his fanbase through crowd-funding. The money he raised will be used to produce two three-minute episodes of Frog in a Suit. He then plans to use these shorts to persuade mainstream advertisers to fund a full series on his as yet to be launched online cartoon channel called In other words, crowd-funding still isn’t a viable solution for funding an entire series if you intend to create the series using a traditional TV production pipeline; it is enough only to make a pilot.

For independent artists who use less traditional and more efficient pipelines, crowd-funding an entire series remains a distinct possibility, especially as more viewers become accustomed to directly supporting the content they want to watch. And there is plenty of room for indies in the crowd-funded marketplace. Even right now, lesser-known artists are reaching their fundraising goals, like Kymia Nawabi who raised $3,000 to make a stop-motion music video for the band Future Islands, and Chris Bishop and Evan Viera who drummed up $11,500 to make their hybrid drawn and CG-short Caldera.

(Thanks, Kelly McNutt)

(Thanks Cartoon Brew)

Marmaduke ready to play games

With Fox’s latest CG/live-action hybrid feature about to open, Marmaduke’s official website has added a number of new interactive games to its pages. Starring the voices of Owen Wilson, William H. Macy, Steve Coogan, Sam Elliott, Fergie, Kiefer Sutherland and others, Marmaduke opens June 4th.

"Ain't That a Kick In the Head?"

…writing action for kids –6-11.

Tuesday night, The Animation Guild hosted a panel of animation writers discussing the world of action heroes in Toonland.

Writer and story editor Matt Wayne (who is also a TAG executive board member) moderated a panel which featured Stan Berkowitz, Alan Burnett, Nicole Dubuc, Charlotte Fullerton, Rob Hoegee, Marty Isenberg, Dwayne McDuffie, Jim Krieg, Eugene Son, Dean Stefan, Greg Weisman, Amy Wolfram and Christopher Yost.

The hour-plus discussion was wide-ranging and lively, and encapsulated the challenges of writing for Superman, Spiderman, Wonder Woman and all the other citizens of the action hero universe. What follows are some of the highlights of what was said.. (My note-taking is too slow and the back-and-forth moved too fast for me to reference which of the above speakers said what. Apologies for that.) …

The Panel Discussion

Q: When does action become violence?

-- In our experience, when blood turns from green to red.

-- Whether or not an action in a show is violent, the question is do you show the consequence of the action? I’m all for violence, but I want to show the consequences.

-- I don’t think, with a lot of action super-hero shows, we show the consequences of action much at all.

Q: Does action in these entertainment shows beget violence?

-- I’ve seen little kids act out in the ways I did as a kid, playing cowboys and Indians or cops and robbers.

-- My 7-year-old played “freeze breath” when he was out on a cold playing field one morning. He and another kid could see the steam from their mouths, and we’re huffing steam out and saying “I freeze you …”. I don’t worry that that kind of thing is going to be imitable violence.

-- When a writer is flagging action or violence in a script, a lot of times Broadcast Standards and Practices will call them on it. But if a writer keeps the violence vaguer on the page, and let’s the board artists pick up the specifics, often times the board artists can get away with the action and violence [that a writer can’t.] Standards and Practices reads script carefully, but don’t pay as much attention to boards.

-- I remember on Teen Titans, we couldn’t get away with a character saying “gun,” but it’s changed now. Today you can say gun … or blaster … and I’m so used to not being able to say it that it freaks me out.

-- The people who review your scripts, the people in Standards and Pracices, have objections to violence. The main thing is, they don’t want to horrify children.

-- They don’t care so much about children, they care about imitable behavior and lawsuits.

-- When the toy company has a toy with battle damage, then the violence is okay.

-- The standards for violence change. The biggest note I’ve gotten from Disney XD [for violence] was criticism of the sound effects of the laser blasts.

-- Once upon a time, S & P were adament you couldn’t leave characters in jeopardy just before the commercial break.

-- Saying the word “kill” is sometimes a trade-off. They tell you, “You can say it four times but not five."

Q: What were you surprised that you got through [in your scripts]?

-- We’re contrarians. As soon as they [Standard and Practices] say you can’t do somethijg, we try and want to do it.

-- Action shows are about fights. It’s going to happen. There will be a fight..

-- Standards and Practices doesn’t want action to have consequences.

-- We don’t want to make war look fun, but with no consequences.

-- For years you couldn’t show anybody killed, but now you can again.

The 99, a comic book property from Europe, you could have a character step on a land mine and have a limb blown off, but you couldn’t show a hint of sex.

Q: Does Standards and Practices’ standards change with the age of a character?

-- Recently I had to age up a kid to show him in jeopardy,. It’s a no-no to show an 11-year-old in danger, but 16? That’s okay.

-- Generally, Standards and Practices people lay out the norms they want you to follow, and when you work with the same people awhile, you get a feel for it, for what they want.

-- Sometimes you write a good line of dialogue, and it goes through. The trick with double entendres is, they have to be double. For instance, a female character saying to Spider-Man shooting his web: “Don’t you get your goop in my hair,” went through, because for kids it’s obviously the web goop that she’s talking about, but for adults it can be something else. You can also alibi with S & P and say: “Hey! I was talking about his web.”

-- Lately, Standard and Practices have had a real hard on for healthy snacks. You can’t have a character on death row eating a candy bar, he’s got to be eating something healthy, like fruit.

-- On Duck Tales years ago, we got an angry letter about the magic and witch craft in an episode. It went, “How DARE you show witch craft! Walt Disney would be spinning in his grave!” And our response was: “Hey, have you seen Snow White?”

-- In the last year or so, shows have trended toward the more serious.

-- I’ve never had a problem putting humor in serious show. Sometimes, execs want it.

-- When you’re using humor and jokes, you never want to undercut the tension or cliffhanger that you’re building to. You know the jeopardy is coming from real terror, and you need not to undermine it.

-- I was a Disney TVA executive for five years, and we got three letters about problems parents had with our shows. But that was before e-mail was common

-- We got lots of letters on Power Rangers. It was no accident that kids on the show were just striking poses and not hitting anybody.

-- On Disney’s Gargoyles we thought that we would get lots of anti-Satan letters, but the only two we got wre from people who admitted that they hadn’t seen the episodes.

Q: What about gender issues on action shows? What about male-female fights? What about drugs?

-- I wrote on a show where the producers and Standards and Practices wouldn’t accept a female villains. I pitched a female villain [and I’m a female writer] and they said no. I didn’t get that.

-- Standards and Practices don’t want people with needles or drinking liquids that changes them, they always steer clear of imitable behavior.

-- Once with Spider-Man, the Standards and Practices people allowed us to how Harry being addicted to a steroid type liquid because we showed the negative consequences.

-- You can’t have men and women fighting and whomping each other, but often that rule is thrown out with super heroes, where it’s equal. Then fighting is okay.

Q: What about character arcs for characters on action shows? Do super heroes always have to stay the same?

-- On Young Justice League we put characters through changes. We tried it with Spider-Man, but he was still Spider-Man.

-- When you have lots of characters who are second bananas you can more easily change them, but Spidey is always Spidey.

-- Broadcast Standards and Practices wanted Ben [on Ben 10] to go back to the character we’d started with, because that was the franchise as far as they were concerned.

-- You learn that when executives feel strongly that something is wrong in your script, it's usually hard to convince them otherwise.

-- Execs' jobs are not to legislate morality but not to alienate advertisers.

Q: Would you like to write adult animation for adults? Pitch action shows to grownups?

-- In the U.S., adult animation means comedy shows. All of us action writers would like to do animation for other adults, but that isn’t the reality now. Now it’s fart jokes for 7-year-olds.

From left to right: Dean Stefan, Alan Burnett, Nicole Dubuc, Charlotte Fullerton, Stan Berkowitz, Jim Krieg.

(Thanks Animation Guild Blog)


Scott Shaw! sends this appeal:

I need about three dozen SoCal pro cartoonists to volunteer for an all-day charity event on Saturday, June 5 in Griffith Park.

We will be doing free drawings (caricatures, comic and cartoon characters, animals, special requests, etc.) for the City Of Hope hospital's fun-fair for cancer-afflicted kids and their families.

You need to be friendly, confident, flexible and tireless. We'll be drawing for about six hours (with short breaks) for hundreds of young kids who will be testing our abilities to quickly draw things and characters we've never been asked to draw before, so it's important be able to think (and draw) on your feet to interact with children comfortably.

If you're interested, please email me at for more information.


-- Scott Shaw!

(Thanks Animation Guild Blog)

Disney Junior Preschooler Channel To Debut in 2012

The Walt Disney Co. and ABC Television Group have announced a new 24-hour basic cable and satellite channel for preschoolers called Disney Junior.

Disney Junior will feature animated and live-action programming aimed at children ages 2-7 and their families. The channel will air 200 new episodes a year of new series such as Jake and the Never Land Pirates, current hits like Special Agent Oso, and Disney feature films including 101 Dalmatians and The Little Mermaid.

The network will include a video-on-demand offering, an HD feed and Spanish SAP audio. In the United States, Disney Junior will replace ABC’s SOAPnet channel and is expected to launch in 2012. SOAPnet currently reaches about 75 million homes.

Disney Junior will be introduced on the Disney Channel’s daily Playhouse Disney block for preschoolers prior to the launch of the full channel.

“The launch of Disney Junior in the U.S. is the next step in our global preschool strategy, which began 10 years ago with the premiere of our first dedicated preschool channel in the U.K.,” says Anne Sweeney, co-chairwoman of Disney Media Networks and president of the Disney/ABC Television Group.

(Thanks Animation Magazine)

4Kids Sells Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s to Germany, Italy and Latin America

4Kids Entertainment has signed distribution deals that will bring Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s: Road to Destiny to Germany, Italy and Latin America.

In Germany, RTL2 has signed on for all 90 episodes of the new series, while in Italy, Mediaset has pacted for the follow-up skein of the popular property.

In Latin America, the series has been acquired for distribution by Televix Entertainment.

With plans for a 10th anniversary celebration in the works, the Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise has achieved tremendous international broadcast success since its launch in 2000.

In the United States, Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s will return to TheCW4Kids Saturday morning block on The CW Television Network on May 29, and continues to air daily on Cartoon Network. The series also is available for VOD viewing on the Comcast, Cox and Bresnan cable systems.

(Thanks Animation Magazine)

Classic Bugs, Daffy Looney Tunes DVDs Out Aug. 10

As Warner Bros. prepares to roll out new versions of its iconic Looney Tunes characters, the studio also is delving into their past to release some classic shorts newly re-mastered and released for the first time on DVD.

The studio has announced the release Aug. 10 of two new sets: Looney Tunes Super Stars: Bugs Bunny, Hare Extraordinaire and Looney Tunes Super Stars: Daffy Duck Frustrated Fowl.

The DVDs each include 15 shorts newly re-mastered from the original film elements and are the first releases in a new series of Looney Tunes releases. The DVDs will carry a suggested retail price of $19.98.

The Bugs Bunny DVD includes Chuck Jones’ Lumber Jack-Rabbit, the only Warner Bros. cartoon produced in 3D.

“Cartoon fans won’t want to miss these two collections filled with un-edited and re-mastered versions of classic Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck shorts that were originally released theatrically during animation’s golden age,” said Amit Desai, WHV VP of family, animation and partner brands marketing. “Our goal is to continue searching our vaults for animated gems such as these to surprise and please even the most experienced of cartoon connoisseurs.”

The episodes included on Looney Tunes Super Stars: Bugs Bunny Hare Extraordinaire are:

• Mutiny on the Bunny
• Bushy Hare
• Hare We Go
• Foxy by Proxy
• Hare Trimmed
• Lumber Jack-Rabbit
• Napoleon Bunny-Part
• Bedevilled Rabbit
• Apes of Wrath
• From Hare to Heir
• Lighter than Hare
• The Million Hare
• Mad as a Mars Hare
• Dr. Devil and Mr. Hare
• False Hare

The episodes included on Looney Tunes Superstars: Daffy Duck Frustrated Fowl are:

• Tick Tock Tuckered
• Nasty Quacks
• Daffy Dilly
• Wise Quackers
• The Prize Pest
• Design for Leaving
• Stork Naked
• This Is a Life?
• Dime to Retire
• Ducking the Devil
• People Are Bunny
• Person to Bunny
• Daffy’s Inn Trouble
• The Iceman Ducketh
• Suppressed Duck

(Thanks Animation Magazine)

Wisconsin Festival to Honor Betty Boop, Animator Natwick

The city of Wisconsin Rapids, Wis., has announced plans for a Betty Boop Festival Wisconsin festival Aug. 5-8 in honor of hometown hero, the late animator Myron “Grim” Natwick.

Natwick (1890-1990) was the original top animator on the iconic character, who debuted Aug. 9, 1930 in a cartoon short produced by the famous Fleischer Studios. Boop was created by Max Fleischer as a competitor to Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse, and became an icon of animation in her own right, known today to millions around the world.

Natwick’s career in animation began in 1921 Hearst’s International Film Services, which he left for Fleischer Studios in 1929. After two years of working at the top animator on Betty Boop as well as on Popeye, he moved to the Ub Iwerks Studio and then to Disney 1934, where he was the primary animator on Snow White. He returned to Fleischer in 1938 to work on the feature film Gulliver’s Travels.

In addition to Betty Boop events, organizers are planning many other artistic and entertainment activities, such as an expanded Grim Natwick animation exhibit; scenic motorcycle tours; an animated film festival; visual art gallery; animation art collectors show; a dance, and other activities.

Betty Boop Festival Wisconsin is a not-for-profit community group, and proceeds from the Festival will be used to support future Betty Boop Festivals in Wisconsin Rapids.

Organizers include Arts & Heritage Cluster, a volunteer group of community members dedicated to “engaging, uniting and illuminating their local arts and heritage for a vibrant community,” and the Wisconsin Rapids Area Convention & Visitors Bureau.

More information on the festival can be found at its official website, located at

(Thanks Animation Magazine)

HIT Block to Air Throughout Latin America on Albavision

HIT Entertainment has scored a deal to air a 90-minute block of children’s programs with the Latin American free TV network Albavision.

The block will feature more that 600 episodes from HIT’s library, which includes such hit series as Barney & Friends, Thomas & Friends, Bob the Builder and Angelina Ballerina: The Next Steps. The programs will air in Spanish.

The block is set to start airing this spring in Chile, Guatemala, Paraguay, Costa Rica and Argentina, with Ecuador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Peru following this summer.

“HIT characters have enjoyed immense popularity in the region, and we are very excited to bring our award-winning programming to even more children in Latin America with such a highly regarded partner as Albavision," said Gabriela Arenas, senior VP of Latin America for HIT Entertainment.

(Thanks Animation Magazine)

Indian company starts work on mocap "Prodigies"

DQE, an animation, gaming, live-action entertainment production and distribution company based in Hyderabad, India, announced Monday the start of production of the 3D motion-capture feature film The Prodigies, co-produced with Onyx Films and Fidelite Films of France.

The Prodigies is being produced at a budget of $28 million as a stereoscopic animated feature film -- similar in technology to Avatar -- by Onyx Films and Fidelite Films at DQE. It's set to be released next March.

Warner Bros Pictures, Studio37 from Orange Group and Kinology are responsible for distribution and sales.

The project is fully funded and in fast-track production at DQE to complete all animation processes and visual effects in time for release.

The Prodigies is an adaptation by Matthieu Delaporte and Alexandre de la Patelliere of the novel written by Bernard Lenteric in 1982. The director is Antoine Charreyon.

Artistic director Victor Antonov, created the visuals for the famous video game "Half-Life 2." Character design is by Marvel Comics designers Humberto Ramos and Francesco Herreira.

In The Prodigies, five young teenagers are violently assaulted. But they're not your average teenagers... they're prodigies. The trauma of the assault incites them to lash out against the world in a cold and calculating way. The five chillingly brilliant minds come together to concoct a perfect revenge. The only person aware of the impending doom is Jimbo Farrar, a sixth prodigy, who has gathered them. As long as he fights against his five counterparts with all his might, there's hope for the world. But should he turn over to their side, it's only a matter of time before a disaster of apocalyptic proportions ensues...

"After Renaissance, we wanted to bring a new form of visual entertainment to teenagers and young adults," said Onyx Films chairman and CEO Aton Soumache.

"The 3D stereoscopic technology offers an immersive experience combined with the ambitious and visually challenging graphic designs and a compelling storyline. The skilled team at DQE is doing great justice to this challenging theatrical production."

Said Fidelite Films president Marc Missonnier: "This film is our first experience in animation, and we are very excited at the prospect of bringing our experience and expertise in live-action films to this project. The combined skills of Onyx and DQE are a key element of the success of The Prodigies."

Joss Whedon Has 'Tentatively Agreed' To Direct 'The Avengers,' Says Zack Whedon

Back in April, word broke that "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and "Firefly" creator Joss Whedon was in final negotiations to direct "The Avengers" adaptation that will bring Captain America, Iron Man and Thor together on the big screen for the first time.

And while there is still no official word from Marvel Studios or Whedon himself, Zack Whedon — Joss Whedon's brother and collaborator on "Dr Horrible's Sing-Along Blog" — may have confirmed Whedon's involvement during a recent interview.

"Speaking of the ['Doctor Horrible'] sequel, we are all anxious to work on it, but some of us — and I'm not pointing any fingers here — but some of us have tentatively agreed to helm an all-star mega-blockbuster summer tent-pole extravaganza movie to be released in 2012," Zack Whedon told Comic Book Resources. "That could possibly, maybe, interfere with the production of our internet musical. Hopefully we will have time for all of us to do everything we want to do."

"Those of us who aren't helming ASMBSTPEMs are writing TV shows, so everyone is very happily busy at the moment," added Whedon. "I'm hoping that when my TV duties are done for the season I can sit down with the gang and we can get this thing going. We want to do it badly."

Earlier this week, Felicia Day — the female lead of "Doctor Horrible" and the creator of "The Guild"offered her endorsement of Joss Whedon's potential turn at "The Avengers."

“Nobody else knows comics better than Joss,” Day told MTV News. “He loves them with a passion and to throw that many comic book characters in a movie? I don’t know who else could handle it.”

"Iron Man 2" director Jon Favreau has also spoken out in favor of Whedon taking the helm of "The Avengers."

"The Avengers" is expected to begin filming early next year for a summer 2012 release.

Warner Bros. sets 'Sherlock' sequel date; 'Flash' close to greenlight

Warner Bros. has scheduled "Sherlock Holmes 2" for a mid-December 2011 release and is getting close to giving the go-ahead for a movie about beloved DC Comics superhero "Flash."

The Dec. 16 release date next year for the "Sherlock" sequel was shown on a slide during a presentation here Thursday by Warner chairman and CEO Barry Meyer. His appearance was part of TW's investor day.

The first "Sherlock" was released this past December.

Meyer said the 2011 film slate will have roughly 25 movies.

As other big releases already set, he mentioned:
-- Red Riding Hood: April 22, 2011
-- The Hangover 2: May 26
-- Green Lantern (3D): June 17
-- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II (3D): July 15
-- Journey to the Center of the Earth 2 (3D): Sept. 23
-- Happy Feet 2 (3D): Nov. 18
-- New Year's Eve: Dec. 9

Given that 2011 will be the last year with a "Potter" release, Meyer said he guesses that the most successful franchise in motion picture history will have exceeded $7.5 billion in worldwide boxoffice once the final installment ends its theatrical run.

And he said his team has been preparing for the franchise's end.

Meyer particularly highlighted that DC Comics characters are key parts of Warner's future, mentioning a July 20, 2012 release date for the latest "Batman" film by Christopher Nolan and a holiday season 2012 "Superman" film.

He added that the studio is also "nearing" a greenlight for a "Flash" movie, with films featuring Wonder Woman, Aquaman and Mad magazine characters also in development.

(Thanks Heat Vision)

Hayley Atwell Confirms Tommy Lee Jones To Co-Star In 'Captain America'

Earlier this year, Hayley Atwell joined the cast of director Joe Johnston's "The First Avenger: Captain America" as Peggy Carter, a resistance fighter and Cap's first love.

While the majority of the film's cast has already been locked down, Atwell inadvertently confirmed that veteran actor Tommy Lee Jones will also play a part within the movie during a recent event.

"I've yet to meet Tommy Lee Jones, although I think I have a scene with him, which I'm really looking forward to doing," revealed Atwell during an interview with Leicester Square TV. According to, Jones is rumored to portray the man who recruited Steve Rogers into the super soldier program, General Chester Phillips.

Atwell also stated that she has already met two of her other co-stars, Chris Evans and Sebastian Stan.

"I've met up with Sebastian Stan and Chris Evans who play Bucky and Captain America," related Atwell. "And they're lovely and absolutely charming boys. We went to see 'Iron Man 2' together and just get a sense of what Marvel is about. That was great fun."

With filming scheduled to begin next month, Atwell also revealed that she is currently in training for her role.

"I'm training at the moment, six days a week to make her a little more military," said Atwell. "And [to] make it convincing that I could kick butt. But it's great fun and I'm really looking forward to doing it."

"The First Avenger: Captain America" will invade theaters on July 22, 2011.

Tommy Lee Jones Confirmed For 'Captain America,' But Who Is He Playing?

The cast of "The First Avenger: Captain America" has truly come together with Chris Evans as Steve Rogers, Hugo Weaving as Red Skull, Hayley Atwell as Peggy Carter, Sebastian Stan as Bucky and Toby Jones as Arnim Zola. But there's another new addition that's potentially the most exciting casting news so far: Tommy Lee Jones is on board.

It's still unclear who Jones is playing in the film, and while we'll likely find that out soon enough, it's worth speculating on some of the possibilities in the meantime.

After the jump, check out five characters we think Jones could play in the "Captain America" movie!

Baron Zemo: Although Red Skull and Arnim Zola are already confirmed for villainous roles in "Captain America," there's always room for Baron Zemo. He could join Cap's aforementioned foes to form a triumvirate of evil posing a threat to the allied forces. Jones isn't necessarily the closest fit to a character like Dr. Heinrich Zemo, but it would present the Oscar-winning actor with a unique opportunity to chew up scenery opposite Evans, Weaving and Toby Jones. Just as long as he doesn't dig too deeply into his Two-Face persona of old, of course.

General Chester Phillips: Let's face it — of all the characters that Jones might play, the most obvious choice is Chester Phillips, the United States Army General who oversees the 1940 Operation Reborn experiment that converts Steve Rogers from scrawny nobody into a brawny superhero. Phillips presents a character with all of Jones' strengths: authoritative, gruff, intolerant of stupidity. Sounds like a match made in heaven, doesn't it?

Dum Dum Dugan: In "The First Avenger," Captain America is certain to interact with members of the Howling Commandos, the elite squadron of U.S. forces that join Rogers in the fight against the Nazis. This could be a great opportunity to utilize an old school Dum Dum Dugan as a World War II operative rather than a modern day S.H.I.E.L.D. agent. Besides, seeing Jones with a big red mustache, a cigar and a bowler cap while fighting the bad guys is something we all deserve to see at least once in our lifetimes.

Nick Fury: Yes, Samuel L. Jackson has his mitts on the character's modern day persona, but what if "The First Avenger" reveals that the S.H.I.E.L.D. director is a legacy character? In other words, the mantle of "Nick Fury" is passed down from director to director. The WWII-era Fury could be played by Jones, someone who is admittedly a bit older than the traditional version of the character but is a perfect fit in terms of attitude. Could be a nice little nod to the original Fury and an intriguing layer to the Marvel movie universe's mythology.

Joseph Rogers: It's always possible that Jones is simply filming a quick cameo role for "The First Avenger," ala John Slattery as Howard Stark in "Iron Man 2." Following that thought, perhaps Jones will briefly grace the screen as Joseph Rogers, Steve's immigrant father who dies early on in the future superhero's childhood. It's not a particularly glamorous role, but as Marvel has a tendency to hire high-profile actors for even the most minor of roles, it's not the most far-fetched casting idea imaginable.

Heidi Montag's embarrassing Transformers 3 audition tape

Heidi Montag has transformed herself so much through plastic surgery recently—to the point that the star of The Hills even finds it difficult to jog or hug people—that we guess it makes sense that she'd want to appear in Transformers 3.

But imagine our surprise when we learned she wasn't looking to appear as one of the new Decepticons, but rather to replace Megan Fox (who was either fired or quit, depending on whom you believe).

Montag wants the role so badly she visited a firing range to put together an audition tape, which she then posted on her Facebook page, Just Jared reported. Check it out below as she turns to the camera and says, "This is for you, Michael Bay."

We have no idea what what Bay will make of the following clip, but we sure wish we could watch him watching it!

So what do you make of Montag's plea?

It'll be back—new Terminator movie one step closer

A new movie in the Terminator series, which last came to the screen in 2009's Terminator Salvation, may be one step closer to happening. According to Variety, the current owners of the rights to the franchise, a hedge fund called Pacificor LLC, announced today that it has hired the Hollywood talent agency William Morris Endeavor (WME) to help sell the rights to a studio or production company.

That's a smart move, since Pacificor has no prior experience making movies. The fund picked up the Terminator rights for $29.5 million in an auction last February after the previous owners, a company called Halcyon, went bankrupt. Pacificor had some post-auction talks with Sony and Lionsgate, who were also bidding for the rights, but nothing came of that.

The now-defunct Halcyon itself bought the rights in 2007 for $30 million from original producer Mario Kassar, with financial help from Pacificor. The package include the rights to all future movies, TV series, DVDs and merchandise. Not a bad deal for a franchise that has made $1.4 billion worldwide.

So far there have been four Terminator feature films and the short-lived TV series Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. Terminator Salvation, which starred Christian Bale and Sam Worthington, was not liked very much by critics or fans, with the movie taking in only $125 million in the U.S. while costing $200 million to make (it made about $246 million overseas).

The movie was supposed to launch a new trilogy, and supposedly there is a script for a fifth film floating around and even an outline for a sixth. Salvation director McG has expressed interest in coming back, although that's probably not in the cards at this point. However, the original series star, Arnold Schwarzenegger, will step down as governor of California at the end of this year. Are you thinking what we're thinking?

Would you like to see Terminator come back? Where should they take the story?

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