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Credit: Disney

The Week in Geek: Joker director says the movie will piss fans off, but Mulan looks cool

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Jul 12, 2019

Congratulations. You made it to the end of another week where it's too hot to think. But don't worry, SYFY WIRE did all the thinking for you. There were lots of things you could've paid attention to, but we've got you covered with the stories that actually matter.

Here we go again: it's the five biggest stories from... The Week in Geek!

Joaquin Phoenix Joker

Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures/DC Entertainment

JOKER DIRECTOR SAYS YOU'LL BE MAD

There are a lot of different ways you can go about promoting a movie starring a famous comic book character. You can talk about how you're a fan of the source material, you can put out a flashy trailer — lots of options here.

Joker director Todd Phillips decided to take a different tactic: He told an interviewer that he thought Joker fans will likely be angry about the direction he took.

"We didn’t follow anything from the comic books, which people are gonna be mad about," Phillips told Empire. "We just wrote our own version of where a guy like Joker might come from. That’s what was interesting to me. We’re not even doing Joker, but the story of becoming Joker. It’s about this man."

Points for honesty? People like seeing a new interpretation of a character if it's done well; Logan didn't bear much resemblance to the comic Old Man Logan, but most people agree it's the best X-Men movie, maybe the best comic book movie, period.

Phillips also promised that this Joker story will have a definitive origin for his take on the character. If anything, that's probably the only potential problem people would have in a Joker movie since the current common wisdom is that the Joker has no real origin. Of course, Jack Nicholson's Joker had a very specific one and people loved that.

Anyway, predictably fans didn't like being told they will be mad. In short, they were mad about being told they would be mad.

The Evil Dead

Credit: New Line Cinema

SAM RAIMI TALKS EVIL DEAD SEQUEL

This week sees the release of Crawl, a movie in which a woman tries to save her father from a Category 5 hurricane, only to have alligators show up.

Since Crawl was produced by Sam Raimi, naturally, talk turned to the franchise that made him famous: The Evil Dead. After the cancellation of the Starz series Ash vs. Evil Dead, we'd been made to understand by its star Bruce Campbell that he was done participating in any live-action continuations.

Raimi says different, though.

"I’d love to make another one. I don’t think TV is in its future but we’re talking about — Bruce [Campbell], Rob [Tapert] and myself — one or two different ways to go for the next movie," Raimi revealed to Bloody Disgusting. "We’d like to make another Evil Dead feature and in fact we’re working on some ideas right now."

Will Bruce Campbell actually star in it? Raimi wants him to, but doesn't think we should hold our breath, saying: "I would be thrilled if Bruce Campbell changed his mind about retirement, would come back for the original Evil Dead line."

In terms of a timeline, Raimi says, "I think you may see some action on the Evil Dead movie in the next six months."

The Evil Dead remake was generally well-received, and Campbell mostly attributes the failure of Ash vs. Evil Dead to it airing on Starz. So who knows! Maybe a feature film with new characters will be the thing that reignites the franchise for a whole new generation.

Screen Shot 2019-07-11 at 10.31.45 AM

Credit: Sony

SPIDER-MAN'S BILLION-DOLLAR RUMOR

Richard Rushfield over at The Ankler claims that there was a stipulation in the contract between Disney and Sony that said if Spider-Man: Far From Home doesn't gross $1 billion, control of the franchise will revert back to Sony.

Apparently, some people think Far From Home is a (relative to other Disney Marvel movies) box office bomb. Of course, that's nuts — it's made about $615 million in just a week, and it's going into a weekend where the big new releases are *checks notes* "Dave Bautista Takes An Uber: The Movie" (aka Stuber) and the aforementioned Crawl. So it'll probably still make a lot more money this weekend and continue to rake it in.

But will Far From Home make $1 billion? Spider-Man: Homecoming only made $880 million! Which, I guess, we're saying isn't a lot of money now?

Anyway, the interesting part of the story resides in the question of what happens if Spidey does go back to being a purely Sony joint. What does the MCU do without Iron Man's heir apparent? Will Spider-Man fight Eddie Brock and Eddie Brock's alien boyfriend who is also his costume, Venom? And which would people prefer?

Also, there's no word on whether this stipulation would actually come to pass if the movie doesn't hit $1 billion. Amy Pascal, who cut the deal with Disney when she ran Sony, is no longer in charge at the studio and is a producer on the movies through her own production shingle instead. Rushfield included the note almost as a passing aside in his piece, so it's unlikely to really come into play at this point.

Nintendo Switch LIte

Source: Nintendo

THE NINTENDO SWITCH GETS LITE

There have been rumors circling for a while that Nintendo's most recent console, The Switch, would be getting two new upgrades: A more affordable model and a hardcore gaming model. 

It turns out that the rumors were half correct. While there remains no announcement for a hardcore Switch (which, I realize, after typing it, sounds hella dirty), there will be a Nintendo Switch Lite that will cost $100 less than the standard model.

The Switch Lite is smaller, comes in more colors, and is purely portable. People are calling it the last nail in the coffin of Nintendo's handheld, the 3DS. And that's probably correct. The original flavor Switch was already completely portable and this new version seems even more so. Whether or not people will jump all over the new console when it's released on September 20 of this year is anyone's guess, but the cheaper model of the 3DS, the 2DS, was surprisingly successful, so good odds say the Lite will also do well.

IT'S MULAN'S FIRST TRAILER, BUT WHERE'S MUSHU?

So while the American women of the 2019 FIFA World Cup were defeating the Netherlands, a Mulan trailer dropped. It featured stunning visuals, a more realistic take on the animated classic, but no Mushu. That's right. If you go by internet standards, the only takeaway from the first glimpse of the new Mulan was: Where's the freakin' dragon?

Of course, there's more than that. On the plus side, people like the visuals, they appreciate the all-Chinese cast, and Yifei Liu, who plays Mulan, looks like she's going to be spellbinding.

On the other hand, the focus on honor and duty in the dialogue has a lot of people shaking their heads because it plays into a series of stereotypes. It also doesn't help that none of the writers on Mulan seem to be Chinese or Asian in any way.

But the trailer for Mulan is out there. It promises to be very different from the previous, animated film. If nothing else, that will probably please people who are less enthralled by the more beat-for-beat remakes like Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, and the forthcoming The Lion King.

And that's it. Your Week in Geek is over. Go in peace. Let us know what you thought of these stories and what was winning your week. Did you see that Jar Jar was trending? Twitter was down, I hear. Hopefully, you survived. Also: Picard has a dog now. How about that! Let us know all your good doggo thoughts.

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