Lots of movies at Comic-Con over the weekend which had naff all to do with comics. And there were lots of movies that do. Falling into the latter category is Cowboys & Aliens, based on the graphic novel series created by Scott Mitchell Rosenberg for his own Platinum Studios imprint.
Okay, so it's hardly a fan fave to rank up with those other attractions at this year's event, Green Lantern, Captain America, Thor and The Avengers. But there are plenty of big-names attached to the movie version of Cowboys & Aliens; from director Jon Favreau; to screenwriters Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman (responsible for Star Trek – yay! - and Transformers – boo!); to producers Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard and Brian Grazer; to a cast including Paul Dano, Olivia Wilde and Sam Rockwell. Plus Harrison Ford puts in an appearance, and Daniel Craig fills the lead role of mystery man Jake Johnson (stepping in when Robert Downey Jr. had to drop out).
The first official image of Craig in his cowboy get-up has now been released, showing him wielding a fancy glowing bracelet which he apparently used to down an alien spaceship in the second of the two scenes screened to the Comic-Con crowd.
Collider carries pretty decent coverage of Saturday's Cowboys & Aliens panel, which seems to have passed without delivering an overwhelming spate of revelations (hardly surprising as the movie is still shooting). Favreau did confirm that his film would not be shot in 3D, nor would it be converted in post-production, suggesting that audiences might instead like to, “take the money you save and see it two times”. Craig expressed a desire to get back to his day job as 007 as soon as possible, but he had no further news as to when the presently-marooned Bond 23 might go before the cameras. And Harrison Ford showed up to delight the masses, apparently clad in handcuffs, in jokey reference to the 'stabbing' and subsequent arrest which occurred earlier that day.
An official synopsis for the film has since been released. But before you delve into it, here are a few things you might like to bear in mind as you read:
Is the the Cowboys & Aliens movie going to deliver a romance between Daniel Craig (born 1968) and Olivia Wilde (born 1984)? Because Jonah Hex - another comic book-derived fantasy western – only served up a two year greater age gap between its two leads, Josh Brolin and Megan Fox. And no-one liked that one, now did they? Not a bit of it.
And is Joss Whedon - present at Comic-Con 2010 in his capacity as director of The Avengers movie – mutating into Cowboys & Aliens producer Ron Howard?
Chew on those intellectual humdingers while you check out the synopsis:
'1873. Arizona territory. A stranger (Craig) with no memory of his past stumbles into the hard desert town of Absolution. The only hint to his history is a mysterious shackle that encircles one wrist. What he discovers is that the people of Absolution don't welcome strangers, and nobody makes a move on its streets unless ordered to do so by the iron-fisted Colonel Dolarhyde (Ford). It's a town that lives in fear.'
But Absolution is about to experience fear it can scarcely comprehend as the desolate city is attacked by marauders from the sky. Screaming down with breathtaking velocity and blinding lights to abduct the helpless one by one, these monsters challenge everything the residents have ever known.'
'Now, the stranger they rejected is their only hope for salvation. As this gunslinger slowly starts to remember who he is and where he's been, he realizes he holds a secret that could give the town a fighting chance against the alien force. With the help of elusive traveller Ella (Olivia Wilde), he pulls together a posse comprised of former opponents – townsfolk, Dolarhyde and his boys, outlaws and Apache warriors – all in danger of annihilation. United against a common enemy, they will prepare for an epic showdown for survival.'