Photo: Comic-Con 2022
Comic-Con, the annual convention for every pop culture fandom in the universe, has officially come to a close. Multiple announcements, numerous film and TV show release dates, and a handful of noteworthy trailers have made relatively substantive splashes in the world of entertainment and pop culture. Some have lived up to their expectations, others have exceeded them, and a few may not have necessarily lived up to them. One thing is certain: there is a lot from this past weekend to unpack.
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Rings of Power Trailer
As we know, Tolkein fans will get a chance to return to Middle Earth this September with the release of Amazon Prime’s new ‘Lord of the Rings’ series, ‘The Rings of Power.’ This marks the first time audiences will return to the land of Middle Earth since 2014’s ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.’ Now, Amazon intends to bring fans back to this mystical world with what will surely be a multi-season series. Along with a panel, fans were also given another trailer immediately afterwards.
The trailer contained a multitude of goodies that Tolkein aficionados will surely recognize. The trailer also gave us hints as to what the overall story will be in this first season. We were also shown some of the most breathtakingly gorgeous locations that will be featured in the show, something that Middle Earth has no shortage of. The trailer also gave glimpses of young Galadriel and Elrond, being played by Morfydd Clark and Robert Aramayo respectively. At the very end, we were also given a tease of another returning character from the original trilogy, the Balrog. The series takes place in the Second Age of Middle Earth, years before the events of ‘The Hobbit’ or ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogies, and likely set up many of the events that unfold in those films.
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Comic-Con 2022 – Marvel Presentation
The panel from Marvel Studios was much larger in scale. Kevin Feige, head of Marvel Studios, came out on stage to announce the official slate of MCU for the next few years. Many of these projects we already knew were coming and around when they would be. Feige confirmed the production and release dates of upcoming films such as ‘Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantamania’ (of which they also premiered some unreleased footage of), ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.3,’ ‘The Marvels,’ ‘Blade,’ ‘Thunderbolts,’ and ‘Fantastic Four.’ New films, such as ‘Captain America: New World Order,’ as well as two upcoming ‘Avengers’ films releasing the same year, ‘Avengers: The Kang Dynasty’ and ‘Avengers: Secret Wars,’ were also announced. The line up of multiple Disney+ shows included ‘Secret Invasion,’ ‘Echo,’ ‘Loki Season 2,’ ‘Iron Heart,’ and ‘Agatha: Coven of Chaos.’ But perhaps the biggest announcement to come out of the Marvel Studios panel was something that was already suspected to be coming.
There have already been reports that Disney+ was working on a new ‘Daredevil’ series. Now we have official confirmation with Feige’s announcement of ‘Daredevil: Born Again,’ which will see Charlie Cox and Vincent D’ Onofrio reprise their roles as Matt Murdock and Wilson Fisk respectively. What especially stands out about this project is that it will not be a limited miniseries, but a season of TV eighteen episodes long. And with their upcoming animated series, ‘Marvel Zombies,’ being given a TV-MA rating, fans can only hope that this new Daredevil project will maintain the gritty nature of the iconic Netflix series. Whether this series is a continuation of the Netflix show or a soft reboot with the same cast is still unknown.
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Marvel also released trailers online for the remaining projects to be released this year. These include the two upcoming Disney+ shows, ‘I Am Groot’ and ‘She-Hulk.’ The trailer for the former was delightful enough for what it was, but the latter’s made more headlines, likely due to the tease at the very end of Charlie Cox’s Daredevil. The first official trailer for ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’ was also released. We got glimpses as to what the story of the film might be given that Chadwick Boseman is no longer with us. We also got some looks at Namor and a new Black Panther teased at the very end. Who is in that suit will likely remain a secret until the release of the film.
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Warner Bros. and DC’s film panel primarily focused on the two major tentpole films releasing later this year (not including ‘DC’s League of Super-Pets,’ releasing this week), those films being ‘Shazam! Fury of the Gods’ and ‘Black Adam.’ The panel started by highlighting the former. This film is a sequel to 2019’s ‘Shazam!’, one of the best DC films ever made. The trailer shown for this film did not disappoint as it retained much of Zachary Levi’s charm from the first film while also expanding on the mythology surrounding the character. The panel then moved on to ‘Black Adam,’ which started out with Dwayne Johnson descending onto the stage in costume. A superb trailer for this film was also released, though it was not the topic of conversation as much as some of the other trailers released.
Of course, it is worth acknowledging the elephant in the room or in this case, the Kryptonian that was not in the room. The big story surrounding DC going into Comic-Con weekend were multiple reports claiming that Henry Cavill was going to appear on stage to ultimately confirm his return as Superman. Some were claiming that it was merely going to be an appearance in ‘Black Adam’ or ‘Shazam! Fury of the Gods.’ Others were claiming that it was to anchor the announcement of a proper ‘Man of Steel’ sequel. Obviously, neither were true as Cavill was nowhere to be seen during DC’s Hall H panel. What does this mean for the future of the Man of Steel? Is this another sign that Warner Bros. is moving away from DC’s Snyderverse?
By Nader Chamas
Click here to read The Hollywood Insider’s CEO Pritan Ambroase’s love letter to Cinema, TV and Media. An excerpt from the love letter: The Hollywood Insider’s CEO/editor-in-chief Pritan Ambroase affirms, “We have the space and time for all your stories, no matter who/what/where you are. Media/Cinema/TV have a responsibility to better the world and The Hollywood Insider will continue to do so. Talent, diversity and authenticity matter in Cinema/TV, media and storytelling. In fact, I reckon that we should announce “talent-diversity-authenticity-storytelling-Cinema-Oscars-Academy-Awards” as synonyms of each other. We show respect to talent and stories regardless of their skin color, race, gender, sexuality, religion, nationality, etc., thus allowing authenticity into this system just by something as simple as accepting and showing respect to the human species’ factual diversity. We become greater just by respecting and appreciating talent in all its shapes, sizes, and forms. Award winners, which includes nominees, must be chosen on the greatness of their talent ALONE.
I am sure I am speaking for a multitude of Cinema lovers all over the world when I speak of the following sentiments that this medium of art has blessed me with. Cinema taught me about our world, at times in English and at times through the beautiful one-inch bar of subtitles. I learned from the stories in the global movies that we are all alike across all borders. Remember that one of the best symbols of many great civilizations and their prosperity has been the art they have left behind. This art can be in the form of paintings, sculptures, architecture, writings, inventions, etc. For our modern society, Cinema happens to be one of them. Cinema is more than just a form of entertainment, it is an integral part of society. I love the world uniting, be it for Cinema, TV, media, art, fashion, sport, etc. Please keep this going full speed.”
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Nader Chamas is an aspiring television writer who seeks to fuse thought provoking progressive ideals into the films, shows, and stories that he loves. Having graduated from Loyola Marymount University with a degree in Screenwriting, Nader seeks to use his writing to advance causes that do not get enough attention or input across mainstream media. Like most, Nader has his own share of his favorite franchises and stories across pop culture. However, he seeks to contribute timely and relevant topics into these stories as well as in his own original material. This is why Nader’s analysis of popular films and tv shows matches The Hollywood Insider’s practice of discussing entertainment from a socially cognizant and critical perspective.