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WIRE Buzz: Priyanka Chopra plugs into Matrix 4; Marvel met with Farewell & Bad Boys directors

By Josh Weiss
Priyanka Chopra

The cast for Lana Wachowski's fourth Matrix film gets better and better every week. According to Variety, Priyanka Chopra Jonas (Quantico) is the latest big name to be circling the sci-fi project.

If the actress closes the deal, she'll be all set to star alongside Matrix vets Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss, who are returning to play Neo and Trinity, respectively. Newcomers include: Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (Watchmen), Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother), Jada Pinkett Smith (Gotham), Jessica Henwick (Marvel's Iron Fist), and Jonathan Groff (Mindhunter).

Production on the film is expected to begin very soon in Northern California.

Priyanka Chopra

The Matrix 4 (it'll probably get a better and catchier title as we get closer to release) hits theaters everywhere on May 21, 2021. Aleksandar Hemon, David Mitchell, and Wachowski penned the screenplay.

Chopra recently boarded We Can Be Heroes, which Robert Rodriguez is directing for Netflix.

As the MCU heads into fresh new territory with Phase 4 and beyond, Marvel Studios is reportedly meeting with up-and-coming directors to helm future projects. Both Lulu Wang (The Farewell) and the duo of Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah (Bad Boys for Life) have gone on the record to say that they have met with the Disney-owned comic book-oriented movie studio.

"I don't know if I'm supposed to say that," said Wang during a director's roundtable hosted by The Hollywood Reporter. This was in reference to a question of whether anyone at the table had been asked to direct a Marvel movie.

Wang went on to talk about Martin Scorsese's description of superhero movies as "theme parks," stating that while she's a fan of those films, she's not quite ready to make one herself.

Lulu Wang

"I think you're making the distinction between cinema [and] the bigger entertainment thing, which is really made by committee," she said to Scorsese, who was present. "And that's one of the reasons I don't wanna do it right now, because I haven't figured out my voice yet as a filmmaker."

As for Arbi and Fallah, their meeting with Marvel was revealed during a chat with

"Well there's nothing concrete. They just met us," said El Arbi. "They said they liked the movie and they just told us, 'Yo, what do you wanna do? Let's find something to work together on.' So there's nothing really planned yet, it was just like a meeting. But yeah, we'll see if we find something cool ... Now with Disney+, [it] has all evolved so much that there's so much you can do."

 Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah

Marvel does have a pretty great track record of taking chances on little-known and small-scale directors like Taika Waititi, Ryan Coogler, Jon Watts, Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck, and even the Russo brothers. Looking toward the future, you've got Cate Shortland (Black Widow), Chloé Zhao (Eternals), and Destin Daniel Cretton (Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings).

Riverdale's 2020 musical episode is being modeled after 1998's Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Deadline has confirmed.

With songs by Stephen Trask and a book by John Cameron Mitchell, Hedwig follows the genderqueer member of an East Berlin rock band, who has her songs stolen by an ex-lover. As it happens, the stars were aligned for this pseudo-crossover, since Trask is a big fan of Riverdale and the producers of Riverdale are big fans of Hedwig.

“Musical episodes have become a yearly tradition on Riverdale, but this year we wanted to try something different,” showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa told Deadline. “When we heard that Stephen Trask was a fan of Riverdale, we thought, 'Is there a way we can do Hedwig and still have it tie into the stories we’re telling?' Doing a deep dive, we figured out a cool way to use classic songs like 'Wicked Little Town' and 'Midnight Radio' that made total sense and are just amazing and iconic. And bonus, Hedwig is literally Cole’s favorite musical!”

Hedwig and the Angry Inch & Riverdale

Per Deadline's synopsis of it, the episode will follow Kevin Keller's attempt to revive a variety show at Riverdale High, only to get shot down for trying to mount a number from Hedwig and the Angry Inch. In protest, the students end up performing songs from the musical, eventually setting the stage for a blossoming romance within the cast.

The citizens of Riverdale will rock out to Hedwig on April 8.