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Filmism.net Dispatch March 4, 2010

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They say a Speedy Gonzales movie has been floating around the pre-production ether in Hollywood for years, a victim of the politically correct times we lived in for years. Now, someone's decided the world's ready for a stereotypical portrayal of Latin-Americans, and we're going to see the world's fastest Mexican mouse on screen, CGI- Garfield style.

While scooping up bucketful of critical kudos, Mickey Rourke is continuing on the comeback trail. After playing Whiplash in Iron Man 2 and a part in Stallone's The Expendables, he's signed to play Conan's father in Lionsgate's remake of the Schwarzenegger classic Conan the Barbarian .

The long-awaited Zoolander sequel has been announced, but bigger news in movies in development is that arcade videogames of the 70s and 80s are the new comic books. We've talked about the upcoming Asteroids movie before, but I learned this week there's a Missile Command film and now Warner Bros has secured the rights to Space Invaders from Japanese rightsholder Taito. Let's hope they do a better job of them than the Tetris movie (no, I don't know if it's a prank).

Shrek Goes Forth is opening the Tribeca film festival this year, which I found very surprising. I thought Robert De Niro's NY-based festival was far less commercial. Maybe Dreamworks is paying for the after parties. In more De Niro news though, Everybody's Fine is the second time a film of his has been released straight to DVD in Australia. Is the era that gave us everything from Wag the Dog over? Yes, I checked - the latter seriously was his last really good movie.

Two slaps in the face have been the only stumbling blocks for The Hurt Locker's seemingly-unstoppable dream run. A US army bomb disposal specialist has sued the producers, saying it was based on him and he didn't get any money. Of course, it's almost due process that you'll get a lawsuit if your entertainment property gets popular (read: wealthy) enough, as everyone from JK Rowling and Dan Brown to James Cameron can attest. But you don't expect your producer to be barred from the Oscars ceremony after allegedly spamming Academy voters, as Nicholas Chartier was when he sent hundreds of emails urging people to vote for him film instead of that '$500m movie'.

In casting news, Neil Patrick Harris is the lead in the Smurfs movie. How he'll fit into Gargamel's robe I have no idea, but I loved his self-satricial turns in the Undercover Brother. Russell Brand is pissed-up playboy Arthur in the remake that made Dudley Moore famous, and Justin Timberlake has been cast in Bad Teacher. Nothing unusual with that, except his ex squeeze Cameron Diaz is headlining it. They must be talking again.

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