October 23, 2016
        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                Tom Hanks to receive Hollywood Actor Award for "Sully" @ Hollywood Film Awards                "Certain Women" showcases Laura Dern, Kristen Stewart, and Michelle Williams                Ben Affleck is perhaps Hollywood's biggest and most diverse superstar                "The Birth of a Nation" looks to survive controversy and contend for awards                "The Girl on the Train" hopes to transport Emily Blunt to the Oscar race        

Jon Favreau enters “Magic Kingdom;” What does this mean for “Iron Man 3?”

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Now that his “Cowboys & Aliens” shoot has drawn to a close (he Tweeted the other day that the film’s first teaser trailer is locked and loaded), director Jon Favreau is looking ahead to his next picture. And to my surprise, it doesn’t have the words “Iron” or “Man” in it.

Favreau, instead, will helm the family feature “Magic Kingdom” for Disney. It reportedly takes place in a fictional version of Disneyland, and resembles – in theory – Fox’s grand “Night at the Museum,” according to Variety.

But there’s no script yet, allegedly. Just a first-pass treatment from screenwriter Ronald Moore that Favreau likely will polish with his team.

Favreau knows how to do family adventure. I’m already hoping his take on “Magic Kingdom” sticks close to the zippy, cool tone of “Zathura,” which Favreau filmed before stepping into Iron Man’s massive boots.

Speaking of, I wonder what this announcement means for “Iron Man 3,” which already has been announced for a 2013 release date. Is Favreau passing the torch to another director? Is he going to edit and mix “Aliens,” then film and release “Magic Kingdom,” before diving into the “Iron Man” universe again? That seems like a short amount of time for a project that tends to drain one’s personal resources. I hope Favreau plans to return for a third “Iron Man.” I appreciate his vision of the character, and I’d love to see him bring a trilogy to its close. We’ll see what happens.

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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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