October 27, 2016
        "The Circle" and "The Lost City of Z": Which potential 2016 contenders got bumped to 2017?                Natalie Portman, Janelle Monáe, Matthew McConaughey, Bryce Dallas Howard, Edgar Ramirez, Stacy Keach at Hollywood Film Awards                Viola Davis will be campaigned in Best Supporting Actress for "Fences"                Mel Gibson to be Honored with the Hollywood Director Award at the 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Michael Moore drops a surprise new film with "Michael Moore in TrumpLand"                Hollywood Contenders: New Oscar Predictions for October                Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, Naomie Harris, Lily Collins get Honors at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                "Manchester by the Sea" leads the Gotham Award nominations                Tom Ford, Marc Platt and Kenneth Lonergan to be Honored at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Tom Cruise is in his action hero comfort zone with "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back"                "Moonlight" could be A24's big Oscar horse this year                Ewan McGregor steps behind the camera with "American Pastoral"                Hollywood Contenders: A second crack at Golden Globe predictions for 2016                "The Accountant" seeks to help give Ben Affleck another blockbuster                85 countries will be competing for Best Foreign Language Feature nominations at the Oscars        

Darren Aronofsky helming the “Wolverine” sequel?

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Is another innovative, high-profile filmmaker about to board a successful superhero franchise?

Shortly after it was revealed that “Watchmen” director Zack Snyder would helm a “Superman” film conceived and produced by Christopher Nolan (“The Dark Knight”), Vulture is now reporting that Darren Aronofsky “entered into negotiations” to direct a “Wolverine” sequel for 20th Century Fox.

Though Aronofsky has yet to attempt a mainstream blockbuster, the move makes sense when you consider the big picture. He collaborated with “Wolverine” star Hugh Jackman on the criminally underrated “The Fountain” in 2006, and the two reportedly have been looking for an opportunity to work together again. Aronofsky also is in the Fox fold, having helmed the Oscar-nominated “The Wrestler” and his current drama, “Black Swan,” for Fox Searchlight.

But it’s not set in stone. Vulture reports that Warner Bros. is prepared to offer Aronofsky “Tales From the Gangster Squad,” a period thriller that recently was offered to Ben Affleck (he passed).

It will be interesting to see which direction Aronofsky goes as “Black Swan” continues to generate Oscar buzz. Both potential projects on his radar seem larger in scope than the films Aronofsky has tried to date. And while I’m not thrilled about him taking over a sequel to a film that was born from an “X-Men” franchise that already has three installments, the story tapped for “Wolverine 2” – which has Logan engaged in a forbidden romance with a Japanese woman – is one of the most beloved from Wolvie’s comic archive and would produce plenty of rich material for Aronofsky to explore.

More on “Wolverine 2,” which is rumored to reach theaters in 2011, as it develops.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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