– The weekly news wrap starts with updates about Fox’s upcoming films revolving around the X-Men license. The studio released a teaser image of the poster to “THE WOLVERINE” set for release July 26th, 2013, which is pictured above. The film is directed by James Mangold and once again stars Hugh Jackman in the titular role; Jackman also co-produced the film loosely based on Frank Miller’s original WOLVERINE mini series from the 80’s. It is described as neither a sequel or a prequel to previous X-Men films and is its own beast. In larger FoX-Men news, Bryan Singer is officially slated to direct “X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST”, which is the direct sequel to “X-MEN: FIRST CLASS”. Singer directed “X-MEN” and “X-MEN 2” as well as produced the aforementioned “First Class”. Matthew Vaughan, who directed “First Class”, will co-produce this film; Mark Millar will have some consulting role on the film in his capacity as Fox’s Marvel license guru/paid loudmouth. The script is written by Simon Kinberg and is based on the comic book story of the same name written by Chris Claremont in 1981. Granted, “X-MEN 2” was supposedly based upon Claremont’s graphic novel GOD LOVES, MAN KILLS, which is accurate to the extent that the villain is named William Stryker and the climax involved Professor X’s mind used as a weapon. At any rate, the film is due out July 18th, 2014 and will feature most of the returning stars from “First Class”.
– With sources being tight lipped about what exactly is the pivotal twist of SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN, which is the incoming relaunch of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN from Dan Slott and artist Ryan Stegman, Humberto Ramos and Giuseppe Camuncoli. Rumors have swirled from anything to Spider-Man being mutated or mind-swapped with Dr. Octopus to possibly being replaced entirely (for a time). Comic Book Therapy has stumbled upon a Twitter post from Dan Slott (which has since been removed) between him and Stegman in regards to a character called “Miguel”. This could possibly be Miguel O’Hara, better known as Spider-Man 2099. Created by Peter David and Rick Leonardi in 1992, it launched an entire line of titles based on the 2099 timeline for roughly six years. Slott is no stranger to O’Hara, since the character was featured in the video game SPIDER-MAN: SHATTERED DIMENSIONS, which Slott also wrote. Miguel has met the Peter Parker counterpart at least twice in continuity. Newsarama theorizes this could be a red herring, but regardless, this will add extra buzz to the relaunch come January 2013.
– There are more updates for the second Captain America film, “CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER”. The biggest announcement was Frank Grillo (from “THE GREY”, “WARRIOR”, and “END OF WATCH”) being cast as the villain Crossbones. The character started out as a gang member and eventually become Red Skull’s key ally as well as disciple. Also stated in the Variety piece were that Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders and Scarlett Johansson will have cameos as Nick Fury, Maria Hill and Black Widow (respectively). Anthony Mackie has been cast as Sam Wilson/the Falcon, with Chris Evans and Sebastian Stan reprising their roles as Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes. The production title for the film, set to release April 4th, 2014, was also shown.