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Stuff: Send Some Birthday Love to Uncle Ray

Ray Bradbury

  • Uncle Ray Bradbury is celebrating his 89th birthday and there’s apparently a party taking place on August 22nd at Mystery and Imagination in Glendale. Sadly, I won’t be able to make the shindig, but here’s the cool bit: the bookstore will pass any birthday cards off to the man himself. So if you owe him some snippets of imagination that he inspired or if he helped shaped your writing (his Zen in the Art of Writing is an invaluable resource), then shoot him a card, why don’t you? I’m sure you can still find a meatspace mailbox somewhere near where you are. Found via.
  • An Alien prequel? Ugh. I know. It just makes your head hurt. But when you tell me that Ridley Scott is attached to direct? Then I’m just…terribly confused. The way you revitalize the franchise is to go backwards? When all you need to do is make an actual Aliens vs. Predator film based on the comic? But later in the article, it’s referred to as a “reboot.” So are people learning the wrong lesson from the latest Star Trek film? No idea. I just know the script hasn’t been written yet and it’s a long, long road between pre-script and hitting the cinema. And Ridley’s a busy guy, as has been discussed before. So I’ll believe this when it starts shooting.
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  • Atlas Shrugged again? Perhaps, but again, it’s a believe it when you see it thing. Partly because the word is Charlize Theron will come on board to play Dagny but only if the thing is a miniseries instead of a single film–which is the smartest way to adapt the book, as we’ve put forward before. The thing would end up on Epix, an upcoming cable network from Lionsgate, MGM and Paramount. The fact that this is a smart idea means that it’s in serious jeopardy of never happening. So. Found via.
  • Coca-Cola has introduced their own URL shortener. You can see the full story about it–and why it may or may not be a good idea for other companies to follow suit here.

  • Leonardo DiCaprio‘s company has snagged Orphan scribe David Leslie Johnson to put a gothic twist on Little Red Riding Hood. What title do you think they’ll go for? Little Red? Or just Hood? Source.
  • When I tell you that Mountain Dew is launching a new diet-only limited edition flavor called “Ultraviolet,” then you, being a reader of this site, would probably be reminded of the unfortunate Milla Jovovich starring vehicle. But fear not. I haven’t tasted it myself, but it must be an improvement, I’m sure. The flavoring? “A refreshing juicy rush of mixed berries without the calories.” Twelve weeks starting August 10th. That’s all you got. If you try it, let us know what you think. I don’t drink diet drinks (obviously) so I’ll have to pass–I depend on all of you.
  • The trailer for A Serious Man is out, the latest from The Brothers Coen. And it looks just as sick as you would hope:

    It goes into limited release on October 2nd. Direct link for the feedreaders.

  • The U.S. government is considering a soda tax to help pay for health care reform. The reasons why this is a terrible idea are too numerous to go over here, but you can easily Google up some articles on it. Like this one, for example. I will say this, though: if you actually expect money from any such soda tax to actually go to health care reform, then I have a bridge I’d like to sell you.
  • Unknown White Male Liam Neeson is negotiating to star in “Unknown White Male,” the Dark Castle thriller that will be directed by Jaume Collet-Serra (who brought you the unfortunate House of Wax remake). Oliver Butcher and Stephen Cornwell (who wrote the aforementioned Diesel/Singleton film The Wheelman). Production starts in January. “Neeson will play a doctor who goes to Berlin for a medical conference and gets into a car accident. When he awakens from a coma, he discovers that his wife doesn’t recognize him — and she’s living with another man who has assumed his identity.” Neeson will make this his followup project when he completes The A-Team which means obviously that the TV adaptation will be done by year’s end. Source.

    • The wrong lesson from the latest Star Trek film? If you mean a reboot isn’t suited to the Alien franchise then I agree. I really like the Alien vs. Predator films. I’m hoping they’ll make another. Ridley Scott is attached to so many films that it’s doubtful if this will ever happen. Monopoly? Robin Hood? AvP 3 & 4 will be out before Ridley Scott’s reboot comes off.