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Thank God! There's Gonna Be A PUNISHER 2!!! Plus 30 DAYS OF NIGHT on fast track at last!!!

Hey folks, Harry here... When I came out of the theater for THE PUNISHER, I was roaring pissed at the movie. When I caught it on DVD - with my expectations obviously realistic - I found the film nowhere near as horrifying as my first experience. It was just a film with some serious tonal inconsistencies that still drive me crazy. In a PUNISHER 2 - if they can get the tone right - and abandon the whole ridiculous "neighbors" thing and harden the Punisher to, at the very least Bronson levels - then they might have something. However, the better news here is regarding 30 DAYS OF NIGHT. I'm hoping that fast track isn't another word for cheap, ill-prepared script and half-assed. If that film is anything short of brilliant - I'll be really really angry. Here ya go...

Hey Guys-  

Love the site, been a big fan for years, but this is my first contribution....so enjoy :)  

Today I attened the Dallas Comic Con Convention which featured Sean Astin, Thomas Jane and Steve Niles (Writer of the comics 30 Days of Night, Fused)  

All three held Question and Answer sessions.  Sean was by himself and Jane and Niles appeared together.  Nothing big from the Astin session, except that every time he talks to Steven Spielberg, Spielberg always starts the conversation with, "You are still up for Goonies 2, right?" which Sean always answers with a "yes!"  

The Jane/Niles session had some really juicy tidbits thought:  

1. Niles said that Columbia has put a rush on the movies version of 30 Days of Night.  Based on the success of The Grudge and Boogeyman, the rush was just put out this week and it is now second in line in production for them behind, he believes, is Scarecrow.  

2. Niles has pitched five of his comics, and all five have been picked up for production recently, including 30 Days of Night, Fused, Hyde and Aleister Arcane (The 5th one slips my mind).  

And here is the big news of the day.......  

3. The moderator asked Thomas Jane about there being rumors of a possible Punisher 2.  Thomas' respone was....."Oh, is that still just a rumor?"  We all perked up, Niles asked Jane if he could talk about this, and Thomas said "Why Not."  Jane let the cat out of the bag and told the room that yesterday at a studio in north Dallas (he dropped the name, but I don't remember it), they filmed the teaser for Punisher 2.  Tom O'Brien, the cover art model of Frank Castle for the Punisher comics who was also at the Con, was also at the shoot yesterday in full costume.  Jane said that on his phone, he owns the only picture of himself and the "real" Punisher, both in full costume, standing next to each other.  No word on when or where we will see this trailer though.  

4. Jane said that while the script is not finished, he is working closely with the team.  He said that he is doing EVERYTHING he can do to get the setting moved to the borroughs of New York and that Jigsaw is "more than likely" going to be the villian in the movie.  

It was a great Con, Thomas Jane was freaking amazing, very down to earth, very personable.  As you can tell from above, he had no problem talking about anything and everything, unlike Sean Astin, who was cool, but answered most of his questions with "I have to be careful about what I talk about because it will start rumors on the internet."  

Keep up the great work guys!!!  

If you use this, call me "Skipper Ben"

Readers Talkback
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  • Feb. 13, 2005, 2:13 a.m. CST

    Good to hear

    by bryce

    good to hear that jane knows enough about the comic to want it moved to New York where it belongs. hopefully the dvd made enough so that they have the budget this time to shoot it in ny or in Vancouver pretending to be nyc at the very least.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 2:14 a.m. CST

    Wow

    by jsm1978

    This is the first time I've ever been the first one here. And I didn't think the Punisher was that bad. Although I will admit to never having been a fan of the comic. Guess that means my opinion doesn't hold much weight.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 2:28 a.m. CST

    The Punisher was an excellent movie. i don't know why fanboys bi

    by SirBiatchReturns

    It was true the comics. The annoying neighbors were in the comics. It was r-rated with some very brutal action. The director gave you, the so-called fans, what you wanted. Yet, it shows that you can never really please fanboys. they will bitch about everything. if the movie is perfect, they'll bitch about a vase in the Frank Castle's room. "Why the fuck does Frank have a vase?" "Does it come in black?" "Who shot first?" and all sorts of basement ramblings. If Punisher 2 is anything like the first, i will be checking it out. The Punisher is by no means a masterpiece, but it was very enjoyable. The way the 'bad guys' are taken down is interesting and i did not feel dumb after watching it in theater. A cool, somewhat retro flick.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 2:32 a.m. CST

    The Punisher strolling down the street carrying a fire hydrant i

    by Dented Helmet

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 2:41 a.m. CST

    Punisher is off to a good start

    by The Game Master

    I for one liked the first Punisher film, and I'm looking forward to the second, not to "correct" anything, but to kick it into overdrive. With comic book films, the first film is usually a set-up, like an "Issue #1" origins story. The first Punisher film did that, albeit rearranging history (yes, I know the comics very, very well, back to 1974). Personally, I'd love to see the 1985 mini-series by Mike Zeck be used as the basis for a film, so maybe for Punisher 3? I also read a nice interview with Thomas Jane, who made a valid point--a movie doesn't have to make a hundred million dollars to be good, even if that's how Hollywood judges success. Frankly (pun-isher intended), I'm surprised that a studio is giving a green light to a Punisher sequel, given that the first only did "moderately well" (what the hell did they expect, releasing it in April, anyway?) Let's all be thankful that the origins are done and now Punisher and get really down and dirty, using screen time for dark, gritty action. And, since trilogies seem to be Hollywood's formula these days, maybe Punisher 2 will follow the "second film is darkest" formula. And now, the big question: Who should be cast as Jigsaw? A few thoughts: Bruce Campbell? And, if they use another wrestler (I may not be a fan of Nash but he did good as The Russian in P1), how about using Batista? He's on a huge roll right now, has that Italian look for being maffia muscle, and he's freakin' huge! Anyway, I hope someone who is working on that movie is reading this . . .

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 3:02 a.m. CST

    See, I liked the idea of putting Frank Castle in Tampa

    by Ribbons

    "What?! He's wearing a black fucking trenchcoat in Florida! Helloooo!!! This gettin' through, dummy?" While I certainly condone the move to NYC for a sequel, I just dug it. I don't think I can really articulate why, but it seemed to complement his state of depression well. Does that make sense? Probably not, but I don't really care. I actually think it did more for the character than putting him in a New York setting would have. While my knowledge of psychology is about as deep as a birdbath, I have heard of case studies where clients admit to feeling angry at the sun or themselves for good weather during a state of depression. Frank's morose attitude in a somewhat brighter locale underscores his incurable state of unhappiness, I think, which helped add depth to the movie. Or maybe it's just because I like Florida, I don't know.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 3:13 a.m. CST

    Punisher was better than the last 2 starwars movies

    by iamarayya

    Bump

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 3:41 a.m. CST

    Never Read The Comic, but The Movie Was Good To Me.

    by The Founder

    So I'm all for a sequel.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 4:14 a.m. CST

    Tom Jane is going to do a Splinter Cell movie too, no?

    by MaxCalifornia.

    Am I nuts, or has anyone else heard that? Anyway I didn't like the Punisher movie at all, but Tom Jane was good in it, everything around him just stunk. So if they can get a decent director this time rather than a first timer, I'll undoubtedly show up. TJ was freakin' cool in STANDER too which I rented this week. Why the frig didn't that get a decent release in the US? Pah.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 4:26 a.m. CST

    I personally hated the punisher movie...

    by kdog69

    and just so you all know, it is nothing like the comics except for a few characters introduced in it. The punisher was an ex- vietnam captain. His family was caught in the crossfire of a mob hit, they weren't the target. Also, having the punisher in florida ruined most of the movie. Also, the punisher didn't even earn the R rating. If you read the comics, or even play the new game, you will know what the punisher should have been like. That being said, I think that this sequel could possibly fix some of the problems with the first. I though Tom Jane was a good punisher in the first one, but everything else sucked. Hopefully he will actually go up against the police instead of them just letting him kill people.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 5:10 a.m. CST

    punisher sucked. doubt the sequel will be much better.

    by krims0nknite

    the first should have been a much better film than what it was. it should have just been a very dark film about some guy turned psyho who loves inflicting pain and suffering upon every semi-bad guy near him. see a henchman? throw a fucking knife into his eyeball. plug his nose, grab his tongue, and cut it off so he can't scream. that was the type of film i was expecting. what i got was some pussy stupid no-purpose neighbours and maybe 1 good scene of the punisher alone when there should have been much more. pretty sure it was an r-film wasn't it? they should take advantage of it. make it a dark depressing brutal extreme non-necessary violent revenge flick. hopefully they'll at least come closer to that in #2. but in #1 the guy did not need any goddamn supporting cast of neighbours, it should have been only about him and the guy who killed his family.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 5:58 a.m. CST

    i actually quite liked the punisher...

    by satansteve

    sure i would have liked an extra 10 minutes or so watching frank come to terms with his loss whilst he healed, but it wasnt bad. i cant wait for the sequel.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 6:01 a.m. CST

    fast track- as in ...

    by dr.bulber

    bloodrayne. as far as punisher 2, marvel doesnt care if their movies aren't hits. you'll still buy the games.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 6:18 a.m. CST

    Punisher? More like Utter ballshit...er.

    by kiddae

    Yes, the neighbours were in the comic, but not particularly good issues of the comic. Apparently Garth Ennis has started taking the character more seriously and is doing some great stuff, but that initial run was awful. The re-writing of the origin was idiotic. Having Castle and his family the target of the hit stretches credulity well beyond breaking point - especially when you have hit men NOT shooting him in the face, and being at pains not to get any petrol on him when setting fire to the pier. But it was at a family reunion! Literally his WHOLE FAMILY got killed! Doesn't that make it sadder? This was clearly their logic behind it, which is so retarded it makes my balls ache. The scenes with him moping around his apartment with a bottle of whiskey show a complete lack of understanding for the character. Being the Punisher IS his drinking the pain away. He's not gonna be sitting around drinking because that's not his coping mechanism - going out and killing baddies is. As for the Batman Forever-style "a happy memory can save your life, being the Punisher is strawberries and sunshine" bit - FAAAAAWWWK. (Punisher 2 might have a chance though, because Thomas Jane was pretty good.)

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 7:08 a.m. CST

    Punisher takes it in the ass daily

    by LargoJr

    The movie was terrible, not even RRS was able to generate interest in it. The only redeaming factor of it was the popsicle interogation scene... that WAS pretty godamn funny, but for the rest, was a train wreck. It reminds me of how evryone was sooo hasitant to pan Daredevil at first, but go their courage up after everyone was in agreement it sucked donkeyballs. Then they were Sooo forgiving of the potential problems of the upcoming Electra, only to be a bit squiemish when it came to calling a turd, a turd. Now its all over and done with, adn even Jennifer Garner HERSELF said it was simply terribl, but she had to due to contract. And ehre we are again.. "Oh boy, maybe they can fix the problems with Punisher 2, maybe they can learn from their mistakes, maybe they will ge tit right this time.." Would you FUCKING WAKE UP ALLREADY??? If they didnt learn from Hulk, DD, Electra, then they never will. PUNNISHER 2 WILL SUCK

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 7:11 a.m. CST

    Punisher STILL takes it in the ass daily

    by LargoJr

    Wow, that looked simply aweful. Friends don't let friends post drunk

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 7:32 a.m. CST

    There's also a "White Noise 2" and a "Saw 2" in the works. It h

    by FrankDrebin

    Revenge fantasies and horror flicks are so cheap to make that the studios can turn a profit just on what Blockbuster and Wal-Mart order for their shelves, plus the global cable sales. Heck, I'm sure there'll be a "Punisher 3: Frankie Goes To Hollywood", with or without Jane.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 8:22 a.m. CST

    What 'The Punisher' sequle needs...

    by mbaker

    Is a story that improves on the original. The first one was a pretty good start, and it should continue with him in New York since he was standing on either The Broklyn Bridge, or The George Washington Bridge at the end. I also find it interesting that the new console game faired even better when it came out.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 9:21 a.m. CST

    Punisher rocked, Punisher 2 will rock harder still

    by Psycho_Kenshin

    PUNISHER kicked ass. It had the right attitude, an oldschool feel, and Tom Jane rocks. Plus, the comedy that I admit messed with the tone a bit, was pretty damn hilarious. Oh no, not vengeance. PUNISHMENT.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 10:10 a.m. CST

    John Travolta was NOT in the Punisher

    by Mr_Furious

    Here's a little known fact. His role was entirely composed on outtakes from "Swordfish." www.letterd.blogspot.com

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 10:21 a.m. CST

    mbaker

    by Ribbons

    Have you ever seen the Brooklyn and GW Bridge? 'Cause they don't look anything like that. That bridge that Frank Castle was standing on at the end of the movie is in St. Petersburg, Florida.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 10:36 a.m. CST

    Isn't Dolph Lundgren too old for the sequel?

    by Gilkuliehe

    And get Michael Bay to direct it. His evolving sensibility may be good for catching the true spirit of Miami. Ergo I'm gone again.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 11:09 a.m. CST

    Holy amphibious basement dwellers with the Streets of Fire vinyl

    by Neosamurai85

    I Liked the first Punisher. It had room for improvement, but it was all very fixable stuff. A second movie with more gore and maybe a tab more Crazy Jane would be nice. That whole bit about the Rules at the ending... that gave me hope. Oh, and a tasteful Dolph Lundgren cameo would be nice. Peace.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 11:19 a.m. CST

    by crackerfarmboy

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 11:19 a.m. CST

    "the whole ridiculous neighbors thing"

    by Macstone

    was part of the best written storyline that the Punisher has had.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 11:22 a.m. CST

    I liked the Punisher too

    by crackerfarmboy

    The Punisher worked for me. I would have preferred to have seen it set in New York though. Also I would have added a quick scene of Frank killing some RANDOM mobsters at the end. I'd do this just as a way of showing that he's waging war on ALL criminals not just those who have killed his family. Finally I'd have him at some point in the movie cut up, fry, grind, and mangle some "pretty boy" mobster's face but leave him alive for some reason. This would be a good set up for Jigsaw in the second flick.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 11:33 a.m. CST

    Could the last Niles comic property to be pitched by "The Nail?"

    by ProzacMorris

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 12:13 p.m. CST

    "Jennifer Garner even said it was simply terrible"?

    by jinX

    Where did that come from? When did she say that? referring to DD or Elektra?

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 12:19 p.m. CST

    Another bad sequel coming down the line

    by AlwaysThere

    Will it ever end?

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 12:49 p.m. CST

    30 DAYS: cheap, ill-prepared script and half-assed??

    by godoffireinhell

    Um, they've only been working on the script for two years now! There've been dozens of drafts. The only danger I see is that it may have been re-written to death but last I heard (from Niles) it was supposedly very faitful to the source material. Now all they need is a talented director and a non-teen cast.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 12:50 p.m. CST

    Direct to DVD?

    by Wormie

    Will Punisher 2 go straight to DVD? The first one felt like a cheapo 80s flick. It was the worst of the recent Marvel movies. Oh, and Daredevil was great, but Elektra was mediocre (though not as bad as The Punisher).

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 2:42 p.m. CST

    PUNISHER WORST MOVIE IN LAST YEARS.

    by uberman

    I simply cannot believe any of you think the punisher was any good. IT was a horrible horrible horrible horrible horrible horrible movie. Please, dont encourage these guys .

  • The film got off to a terrific start, but right around the time he has that silly,fake fight with Kevin Nash as the Russian hitman it lost focus and got stupid.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 3:34 p.m. CST

    Skull of Cars.

    by RainJacket

    The final scene involving Castle making that dumb "Skull made out of Cars" was perhaps the dumbest, most retarded thing I've ever seen. I hated this movie. It was perhaps the worst comic-to-screen adaptation since, well, probably Daredevil. I thought at least it would be better than the Dolph Lundgren piece of crap. I was shocked when it wasn't. It was just made poorly and directed badly. Unlike "Hulk", which failed for so many other reasons, "The Punisher" looked like it was made by people who had never made a movie before in their lives. And that final sequence. God. What did Castle do? Spend hours upon hours placing those cars into the perfect position? Did he have GPS? I could spend all afternoon putting cars in a straight line and it still would be crooked. Did not one of Travolta's men notice him driving around in the parking lot across the street? I wanted to throw something at the screen, it made me so angry. It's the same reason why Daredevil pouring gasoline perfectly on a subway platform to form his logo makes little sense. We do not need a sequel to this. Unless it's a movie with a different cast, and a different crew, and that it ISN'T a sequel at all but a correction, we simply do not need this.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 3:38 p.m. CST

    Maybe the Punisher would have worked better...

    by SoupDragon

    If it was set in the late 80's. That way they could have kept the Vietnam background for the character, and maybe could have done some interesting retro stuff with the soundtrack, sets, lighting etc. Also the fact that the killing of Castle's family was indiscriminate needed to be kept in there. (What motivation does he have to carry on in the movie after he kills Travolta?)

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 4:55 p.m. CST

    "...at the very least Bronson levels..."

    by where_are_quints_hobbit_set_reports

    Never in a million years will Jane or ANYONE harden himself or any character to Bronson levels, not in Hollywood cinema. BLASPHEMY.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 5:54 p.m. CST

    The Punisher could be a great franchise one day.

    by Darksider

    Keep Tom Jane, but give it a bigger studio budget,story and a real villain. The first director had style, but it seemed like a western to me and it didn't work. The location needs be bigger. I live in Tampa and I still couldn't believe it. Oh, and leave out anything remotely resembling Garth Ennis.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 6:19 p.m. CST

    To "jinX" -- Here's a link to Garner's comment about "Elektra" (

    by FrankDrebin

    http://www.imdb.com/news/wenn/2005-01-27

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 6:21 p.m. CST

    RainJacket

    by Ribbons

    True that. Even worse considering Daredevil is blind ("But his super sonar senses allowed him to hear the gasoline splashing off of the concrete and his super heightened sense of touch allowed him to form the perfect logo") Yadda yadda yadda. Just another dumb vignette in a movie full of dumb vignettes.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 10:41 p.m. CST

    30 Days of Night is a rip off of a Tales From the Crypt episode

    by KongMonkey

    Same basic premise, only its revealed at the end with the typical unhappy turnout. of Ironside disappearing among a mass of Vampires.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 10:46 p.m. CST

    "Skull made out of cars" scene...

    by Osmosis Jones

    Thank you, RainJacket, for the biggest laugh I've had all day. That scene was dumb and anticlimactic as it was, but when we got the exact same "fire forms the hero's logo" gag from The Crow (where it sorta worked) and Daredevil (where it sorta didn't), I was howling with laughter. Realizing the logistical impossibility of it just made be laugh even harder. It's just like those serial killer movies where pushpins on a map marking murder sites turn into the shape of a pentagram, or something. Reminds me of that Simpsons episode where Chief Wiggum starts rearranging the pushpins on a map of Springfield (during a crime spree), and says "Hey...it *almost* looks like an arrow!", and one of the other cops says, "Hey, it's pointed right at this police station!", and everyone runs out of the building screaming.

  • Feb. 13, 2005, 11:48 p.m. CST

    Screw you,i liked the punisher

    by liljuniorbrown

    I really did,there were parts like the singing Hitman and the fat guy that pissed me off but other than that it was an alright movie.The reason it didn't make that much money was that it opened against Kill Bill 2 and it opened in April. The Hulk sucked there is no comparing it to the Punisher.I'm with the idea of moving the Punisher to New York,he's through with the Saints,don't bring them back in any form. Make Mickey Rourke Jigsaw and don't make him the main bad guy.Can you imagine the movie starting out with the police going to the scene to investigate someone thrown out of a plate glass window face first,and one of the cops holding up a picture of Mickey Rourke from like 1985 and saying oh well that bastard will never look this good again ,that is if he lives.Then the Director can use some good prosthetics to fuck his face up even more and have him and Thomas Jane kicking the shit out of each other the rest of the movie.On a final note i watched Death Wish 3 the other day,that movie was about old people in an apartment building getting harassed but Bronson still kicked an insane amount of ass and it was awesome.HAVE THOMAS JANE BLOWING NAMELESS THUGS TO HELL WITH BIG ASS GUNS AND YOU'VE GOT MOVIE GOLD.

  • Feb. 14, 2005, 7:48 p.m. CST

    You've been PUNISHED!

    by Chaka

    The cast of the Punisher wasn't bad ... thought they all acted well. The script needed love. What's up with the Punisher lugging around fire hydrants and getting people tickets? Is that how he punishes folks? What's next ... he switches someone's diet coke with a regular coke to punish them?

  • Feb. 14, 2005, 9:01 p.m. CST

    "Screw you (?!), I liked The Punisher?"

    by Ribbons

    So this is what it's come to? If people don't share the same opinion as you it's "screw you?" And I thought I had a fragile ego.

  • Feb. 15, 2005, 7:57 a.m. CST

    Fragile ego? nope just a sense of humor.

    by liljuniorbrown

    Get one . If i was really upset over the fact that some of the people on this site didn't like a movie that i liked,then i would have some serious issues.But thanks for wasting your subject line and talkback space to make a slam at me.My fragile ego appreciates it.

  • Feb. 15, 2005, 11:23 a.m. CST

    Thanks FrankDrebin

    by jinX

    Weird that Vartan would repeat disparaging remarks made by an ex-girlfriend regarding her movie that was still in release. Garner couldnt have liked that.

  • Feb. 15, 2005, 12:31 p.m. CST

    Why don't they just pretend the first one never happened and jus

    by TimBenzedrine

    Many years ago ABC TV made a Wonder Woman film with a blonde Kathy Lee Crosby in a jumpsuit as the title character. Practically a year later they went back to the classic look of the original, in the form of Lynda Carter and her amazing spangled tights. Although it was cheezy, it ran on TV for years while the other film is long forgotten. The lesson learned here? Stop trying to reinvent the wheel Hollywood. do the characters the way they were written.

  • Feb. 15, 2005, 5:57 p.m. CST

    The Punisher stunk. But we don't need a sequel. We already had

    by JohnnyTremaine

    it was called MAN ON FIRE with Denzel. The movie rocked.

  • Feb. 15, 2005, 11:29 p.m. CST

    Uh-huh

    by Ribbons

    Well, I suppose I stand corrected. For the record, I wasn't trying to "slam" you (that would be something closer to "It's called a sense of humor. Get one."), I genuinely thought that your response to negativity was to cuss us out. And I have to admit, that does piss me off a little bit, because this is (ostensibly) supposed to be for the discourse of ideas, which a heartfelt "screw you" would seem to be counterproductive to. I apologize for calling your allegedly healthy ego fragile, but if you think no one on this site is capable of typing something like that and meaning it, then you don't pay enough attention.

  • Feb. 16, 2005, 9:20 a.m. CST

    The Only Actor who could play Jigsaw

    by Lilium

    Al Pacino. 'Nuff said.