Expendables 4 gets a new title and teaser at CinemaCon, plus Judy Blume adaptation, Wonder prequel & more

The Expendables ride again! Lionsgate is in the midst of presenting at CinemaCon in Las Vegas and our own Chris Bumbray is on the scene. After taking a break following the release of The Expendables 3, the franchise is back with The Expendables 4, which promises more high-octane, ’80s-style action.

Comedian Sebastian Maniscalco is hosting the Lionsgate presentation and when the time came to focus on The Expendables, he joked that “this franchise is more violent than Will Smith at a comedy club.” As for the film itself, the title is now stylized as Expend4bles. I know, but it does look to be a return to the franchise’s roots. The teaser featured footage from the previous films before introducing the new blood, including Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Megan Fox and Andy Garcia (who is wearing an Expendables beret). Although Sylvester Stallone is back for the film, it seems that he’ll have a smaller role this time around as Jason Statham and 50 Cent have received top billing. Lots of action to be had, with the teaser stating that the past three installments have just been a “warmup” for this one.

The Expendables 4 will feature Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Megan Fox, Tony Jaa, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Tony Jaa, Iko Uwais, and Andy Garcia. The film was by Scott Waugh from a screenplay by Spenser Cohen with revisions by Max Adams and John Joseph Connolly. While production was still ongoing, Stallone announced that he had completed work on the film and was “ready to pass the baton on to Jason [Statham] and his capable hands.

Rachel McAdams and Abby Ryder Fortson then came on stage to introduce the big-screen adaptation of Jude Blume’s Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. The Edge of Seventeen‘s Kelly Fremon Craig directed the film and the teaser trailer highlighted just how many times the novel has been referenced in pop culture, from Deadpool to Lost to The Simpsons. Chris Bumbray said that it looks quite funny, with edgier humour than you might expect. Set during the ’70s, the teaser was scored to George Harrison’s What is Life as Margaret (Fortson) moves to a new town with her mother (McAdams) and struggles with coming of age.

Next up was White Bird: A Wonder Story, a follow-up to 2017’s Wonder starring Julia Roberts, Owen Wilson, and Jacob Trembley. Marc Forster (Quantum of Solace) takes the director’s chair this time around with the sequel focusing on Julian (Bryce Gheisar), the young boy who bullied Jacob Trembley’s character in the first movie. The teaser shows that he’s been sent to another school and winds up spending time with his grandmother (Helen Mirren) who tells him about growing up as a Jew during the Holocaust. She falls in love with a crippled boy who winds up rescuing her from the Nazis and giving her shelter. Bumbray said that it looks to be a pretty interesting Holocaust drama, but the connections to Wonder seem shoehorned in.

Sebastian Maniscalco then introduced About My Father, a comedy loosely based on his own life. Maniscalco plays a version of himself who marries a woman (Leslie Bibb) from a very wealthy family. After growing up working class, it’s wildly different from what he’s used to, but it’s his ultra-cheap father (Robert De Niro) who clashes with his future daughter-in-law’s parent’s (David Rasche and Kim Cattrall). The film looks to be in the same vein as Meet the Parents and the trailer ended with a great line where Maniscalco tells his dad that he “looks like the guy who killed John Wick’s dog.” Robert De Niro was brought out on stage, along with Leslie Bibb and Kim Cattrall, and praised Maniscalco with “telling the story from a real place,” but he did say he would have recast him with Leonardo DiCaprio if he could.

Source: CinemaCon

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Based in Canada, Kevin Fraser has been a news editor with JoBlo since 2015. When not writing for the site, you can find him indulging in his passion for baking and adding to his increasingly large collection of movies that he can never find the time to watch.