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Stephen Colbert’s Epic Speech About The Hobbit Will Thrill Any Tolkien Fan

The new trailer for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies may have gotten you excited to visit Middle-earth for the last time, but when it comes to the fantasy world created for the Lord of the Rings movies, nothing can beat Stephen Colbert's epic speech on the subject, which he delivered at Comic-Con this past weekend. A longtime J.R.R. Tolkien superfan, Colbert had a cameo as the Laketown Spy in the The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, and he reprised the character on Saturday while moderating the Hobbit panel. (Adorably, Colbert's young son came out onstage dressed as a Laketown spy, too.) But before Colbert introduced Peter Jackson and the film's cast, he delivered an epic, hilarious, emotional speech about his Lord of the Rings fandom and how much Jackson's six movies have meant to him. Give it a read, and we guarantee that your already-overstuffed heart will swell even more for The Hobbit (and for Colbert).

"If I could only go back in time and show this to my 13-year-old self!" »

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Trailer Is Here

The below trailer for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies ends with Thorin Oakenshield asking, "Will you follow me, one last time?" And in that moment, he sure sounds like Peter Jackson's surrogate, as the director, after around 800 hours of movie, is asking audiences to come out for one last epic. The film opens on December 17. Will you follow Oakenshield and Jackson? Knowing these films, at minimum, there'll probably be one hell of a spread.

Which Movies Scored (and Whiffed) at Comic-Con 2014?

It's time to put your Winter Soldier costume on ice until next year, because Comic-Con 2014 has concluded, and with it, the rush of movie announcements and tantalizing trailers must end. Which movie properties came out ahead this past week, and which big-budget blockbuster hopefuls couldn't quite connect with their captive audiences? Here's our rundown of what worked and what didn't at Comic-Con 2014.

The Avengers and Mad Max came out ahead. »

Karen Gillan on Guardians of the Galaxy, Selfies, and Putting Men in Headlocks

Scottish actress Karen Gillan is best known for playing leggy, headstrong Doctor Who companion Amy Pond. That could all change very soon. On Friday, she debuts in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy as the bald, blue assassin Nebula, and this fall, she’ll play a modern-day Eliza Doolittle in the ABC rom-com Selfie. The delightful Gillan was promoting the latter at the Television Critics Association summer press tour this month, so Vulture used it as an opportunity to get her thoughts about her supervillain turn and how studying superficial women at SoulCycle factored into her work on Selfie. But, of course, any conversation with a former companion must begin with Doctor Who.

“I laughed hysterically when they got rid of [my hair].” »

Leaked Test Footage for Deadpool Movie Is So Very Good

Talk of a Deadpool movie has been going around since Ryan Reynolds first played the character in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. However, at some point after visual-effects artist Tim Miller came onboard to direct, the project got put definitively on the back burner. Well, we now have an idea of what exactly we are missing, as Miller's test footage has leaked online. It features Deadpool in all his violent, wisecracking, fourth-wall-breaking glory. Also, he sings along to Gwen Stefani's "Hollaback Girl," as if Fox were the girl Deadpool wanted to holler back.

Horns Gets a Longer Trailer, Daniel Radcliffe Gets the Power of Persuasion

Along with everything else that debuted at ComicCon, here is a longer trailer for Horns — the movie where Daniel Radcliffe swears he didn't kill his girlfriend ... and then grows a pair of devilish horns. According to this new trailer, the horns apparently come with the power of persuasion, so finding his girlfriend's killer shouldn't be that difficult? Just ask around.

Here, Finally, Is the Hunger Games: Mockingjay Teaser Trailer

The first teaser trailer for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 debuted at Comic-Con this Friday, and now the cosplay-deficient masses get a chance to check it out as well. We don’t get to see too much of J.Law–Katniss in action — and no signs of Peeta or Johanna at all  but there's some nice footage of Philip Seymour Hoffman as former head game-maker Plutarch Heavensbee discussing matters of rebellion with District 13's silver-haired president, Alma Coin (series newcomer Julianne Moore), as well as a quick glimpse of Margaery Tyrell Natalie Dormer looking tough as nails with a half-shaved head. Have a look:

Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight Is Happening After All

When an early draft of the script for Quentin Tarantino's ensemble Western The Hateful Eight leaked earlier this year, a "very, very depressed" Tarantino declared that he was not planning to continue with the project. But at a live script reading in April, the director announced that he was working on a second draft of the screenplay, stirring hopes that the post–Civil War stagecoach drama might not be doomed after all. Now those suspicions have been confirmed: At a Comic-Con panel promoting his Django Unchained–Zorro crossover comic book on Sunday night, Tarantino was asked by an audience member whether The Hateful Eight would be his next feature, to which he responded, after a pause: “Yeah. We’re going to be doing The Hateful Eight at the beginning of the year." It's not clear exactly which actors will make up the cast — most of the participants from the live read are expected to reprise their roles — but whomever it is had better keep those new scripts locked up tight. We've got our eyes on you, Bruce Dern.

See Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron in the Pretty Incredible Mad Max Trailer

On Saturday, Vulture, on the ground at Comic-Con, attended the Mad Max panel, where director George Miller described his upcoming prequel, Fury Road, as "practically a feature-length chase scene." The trailer, first shown at yesterday's panel, is now available online. Tom Hardy plays a young Max in a rough-and-tumble chase as a band of marauders try to capture Charlize Theron, who sports a shaved head and gritty eye makeup and her band of dewy women. As you might expect, there are lots of spikes, explosions, and desert sand.

Watch it. »

Marvel Green-lights Guardians of the Galaxy 2

Marvel recently planted flags on a whole lot of release dates over the next few years, and today at Comic-Con, they were expected to announce several of those mystery projects. Rumors flew that the studio might reveal Black Panther or Ms. Marvel; they did not. They didn't even mention Dr. Strange, likely because Joaquin Phoenix hasn't finished negotiations. Instead, in a video message from Chris Pratt and James Gunn, the studio confirmed what almost everyone had suspected: Guardians of the Galaxy is getting a sequel, and it's coming July 28, 2017. That's how bullish Marvel is on the Gunn-directed, Pratt-starring franchise, especially with the first installment (out August 1) tracking strongly and earning stellar reviews. May Vin Diesel's continued employment as a tree continue!

Comic-Con: Did Joss Whedon Just Kill All the Avengers?

Long before shows like Game of Thrones and Lost taught us that anyone was expendable, Joss Whedon was the undisputed master at killing off your favorite characters. Whedon's tenure at the helm of shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel left behind a body count of the beloved, but you might have thought that Whedon's foray into directing superhero movies would curb his murderous tendencies: Yes, he snuck one surprise death into The Avengers, but the superhero-stuffed sequel Avengers: Age of Ultron wouldn't seem to have as many expendables. Who among these franchise-sporting superheroes could he kill, really?

The answer, it seems, is every goddamn last one of them. »

Guillermo del Toro Tells Shocked Comic-Con Crowd That Tom Hiddleston Is Great

Yes, the Comic-Con crowd was excited to see Benedict Cumberbatch this week. Yes, they were happy that Daniel Radcliffe made his first trek to San Diego. But for the fans huddled here in Hall H, there is one high truth far holier than any other: Thou shalt take no gods before Tom Hiddleston. The British actor has flitted through many a Marvel movie as the trickster villain Loki, and he brought the house down last year when performing in character at Comic-Con. Though Hiddleston wasn't present today, director Guillermo del Toro still had something to say about the actor, whom he cast in his new gothic thriller Crimson Peak.

"I must tell you girls, Tom Hiddleston is the nicest f**king guy on Earth." »

Comic-Con: They’re Making Another King Kong Movie

Here's something unexpected! At the end of today's Legendary Pictures panel at Comic-Con, producer Thomas Tull introduced a trailer for a brand-new mystery project ... that turned out to be a sequel of sorts to King Kong. Not that any of us knew that as the trailer began: All we saw was a stormy, primeval-looking island, accompanied by some ominous narration, and since director Guillermo del Toro had left the stage, many people in the audience figured we were watching some sort of announcement teaser for del Toro's long-in-development passion project At the Mountains of Madness. (Still others around me guessed Jurassic World.) Then, as we pressed in on the island, we saw a giant monster roaring — and hey, is that King Kong? Smash cut to the title: Skull Island, the place King Kong calls home. The panel ended right after that with nary a lick of information, and the audience was ... well, confused. There's no director attached to this project yet (although Legendary has dated it for November 4, 2016), but hey, why not make the trailer first, right?

Comic-Con: Godzilla 2 Teases Mothra, Rodan, Ghidorah

After this summer's reboot of Godzilla scared up an impressive $491 million worldwide, a sequel seemed assured … until Star Wars came calling. "Unfortunately, our director Gareth Edwards is locked up in a galaxy far, far away," said Legendary Pictures chief Thomas Tull today at Comic-Con. Indeed, after Edwards was selected to helm one of the coming Star Wars spinoffs, Hollywood wondered whether Legendary would press on with a new Godzilla film without him … but in a special video message from Edwards that just played at Hall H, the director thanked fans for their support and revealed, "It means we get to make another one. I'll be back to do Godzilla 2."

Read More  »

The Trailer for Kevin Smith’s Tusk Is Kind of Terrifying

Kevin Smith has pulled himself out of the doldrums not just to make Clerks 3, but also Tusk, a horror film about a mad scientist who wants to answer the question, "Is man, indeed, a walrus at heart?!" Originally conceived of as a podcast, Smith wrote the whole thing in 20 days. In a guest column for The Hollywood Reporter, Smith said that the movie got his creative juices flowing again: "As stoned as I always am, this walrus picture was starting to sound like a worthy endeavor — or at the very least, a movie I'd like to see." (The piece was taken down because it had too many spoilers, but was cached here. Thanks, internet!) Justin Long plays an intrepid podcaster whose interest in weird adventure tales takes him to the backwoods of Canada and to the home of Howard Howe (played by Michael Parks), the man who tells tall tales. It's Misery meets a Hammer Horror film.

Comic-Con: Yes, Mel Gibson Came Up During the Mad Max Panel

Warner Bros. showed off a whole lot of footage from its long-gestating Mad Max reboot today at Comic-Con, and the thing looked relentless. We first meet Tom Hardy's young Max, bearded and dirty, as he's stomping and chewing a lizard; it's not long, though, before he's the one who's being kicked and tortured by a roving gang of marauders that shave his scruff and tattoo his back. He's then masked and placed on the front of their car like a very unusual hood ornament, but as the villains pursue Charlize Theron (who's spiriting away three young women including Zoe Kravitz and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley) across a desert landscape and through lightning-laden dust storms, Hardy eventually frees himself and allies with Theron.

"Who knew that Mel Gibson would literally turn into Mad Max at some point?" »

Here’s Your First Look at Gal Gadot As Wonder Woman

Just now at Comic-Con, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice director Zack Snyder showed a teaser from his 2016 movie, featuring Ben Affleck as Batman and Henry Cavill as Superman ... but what of Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman? Eagle-eyed Comic-Con attendees briefly glimpsed a poster of Gadot in costume on one of Hall H's side screens, and now Snyder's taken the liberty of uploading that picture to Twitter. What do you think of the costume? Are you psyched to see Wonder Woman wielding a sword? Sound off!

Comic-Con: We Just Saw Ben Affleck As Batman

After a sleepy two days at Comic-Con, Warner Bros. just opened its Hall H panel by playing its biggest hit right off the bat: The studio screened the very first footage from Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. "We were shooting last night, [we] jumped on a plane and came here this morning," said director Zack Snyder, who brought stars Ben Affleck (leather-jacketed and uncomfortable-looking), Henry Cavill, and Gal Gadot. "I'm not giving them a microphone because I'm afraid you guys are gonna ask them some questions," said Snyder.

Read More  »

Comic-Con: Channing Tatum Is More Than Just His Looks

The actresses at Comic-Con are used to being treated as mere eye candy, but today, turnabout was fair play at the Fox panel for Book of Life. The Day of the Dead–inspired animated film has a heavily Latino cast that's toplined by Diego Luna and Zoe Saldana, but Channing Tatum also has a significant role as Luna's romantic rival, and when the actor took the stage in Hall H for Book of Life's Q&A, one fan asked Tatum why he'd make any movie that didn't rely on his handsome mug or chiseled torso.

"Um." »

  • Posted 7/25/14 at 5:15 PM

Best of Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu Streaming: Ass-Kicking Women

This weekend, as you search for a movie to watch, you can either see Lucy or pick one of approximately 14 billion options available on streaming over a variety of services, be it Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, On Demand, or other sites. Every Friday, Vulture tries to make life easier by narrowing it down to a handful of heartily recommended options. This week, a quartet of films about strong female protagonists.

The movies were desperate for Pam Grier. »