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WIRE Buzz: Szechuan Sauce returning to McDonald's; NBC cracks Langdon casting; and more

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Mar 2, 2020

The prophecy was true! McDonald's is bringing back its famous Szechuan Sauce for an official tie-in promotion with Adult Swim's Rick and Morty. The iconic restaurant franchise teased the product's return in a Facebook post from yesterday. Ironically, this is not a brand partnership for Disney's upcoming Mulan remake (in theaters March 27), even though the entire joke came about from the limited edition sauce created for the 1998 animated film.

McDonald's brought the sauce back for a limited time back in 2017, but received fan backlash for not being able to keep up with the insane demand.

Since this promotion was not done in conjunction with Adult Swim, Rick and Morty co-creator Dan Harmon voiced his displeasure over the brand trying to piggyback off the success of the show without permission. Harmon's fellow creator, Justin Roiland (who also voices the two main characters), took to Twitter to say that they had nothing to do with the fiasco.

During this turbulent time, SYFY WIRE got an exclusive Szechuan Sauce recipe from one of New York's most respected restaurateurs, Ed Schoenfeld. In February of 2018, the chain brought the good stuff back...again for another limited event.

The entire phenomenon stems from the series' Season 3 premiere ("The Rickshank Redemption") in which Rick, trapped inside his own mind and memories, revisits McDonald's for a nostalgic taste of Mulan-inspired Szechuan Sauce. Even his interrogator from the Galactic Federation (voiced by Nathan Fillion) comes to understand why Rick is so obsessed with the stuff.


NBC's forthcoming pilot based on Dan Brown's best-selling Robert Langdon novels has cast Succession's Ashley Zuckerman as its swashbuckling symbology professor, the network confirmed to SYFY WIRE today. Zuckerman will become the second actor after Tom Hanks to portray the character in the live-action space. 

Inspired by 2009's The Lost Symbol, the pilot (simply titled Langdon) finds the famed Harvard educator in one of his earliest adventures. Using his extensive knowledge of semiotics (aka the study of symbols), Robert works to solve a bunch of deadly puzzles in order to save his kidnapped mentor and thwart a global conspiracy. 

Dan Trachtenberg (10 Cloverfield Lane) is on board to direct and executive produce.

Credit: Ben Mark Holzberg/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images & Sony Pictures

Dan Dworkin and Jay Beattie (MTV's Scream) are writing and executive producing the project. Ron Howard, who helmed three Langdon-centric adaptations for the big screen, is executive producing alongside Brian Grazer, Samie Falvey, and Anna Culp.

No other casting news was confirmed at this time. Langdon is a co-production between CBS Television Studios, Universal Television, and Imagine Television Studios.


Warner Bros. has decided to cancel its New York premiere for Superman: Red Son in the wake of the growing Coronavirus issue.

"As the impact and spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to evolve, Warner Bros. is placing added emphasis on the health and welfare of its employees, talent and fans," the studio said in a statement. "To help minimize risk of exposure, Warner Bros. has opted to take preventative measures and cancel the New York premiere of Superman: Red Son on March 16, 2020. We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused, and we look forward to seeing you at future events."

Credit: Warner Bros. Animation/DC Entertainment

Based on the influential Elseworlds comic of the same name by Mark Millar and Dave Johnson, Red Son imagines an alternate reality where Kal-El's baby ship crash-landed in the Soviet Union instead of the United States. The movie is currently available on digital platforms. It hits 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, and DVD Friday, April 17.

Watch an exclusive clip from the film right here.


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