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<p>I&#39;m almost sure we won&#39;t see this in &#39;Episode VIII,&#39; but it&#39;s still awesome.</p>

I'm almost sure we won't see this in 'Episode VIII,' but it's still awesome.

Credit: 20th Century Fox/Lucasfilm Ltd.

Rian Johnson directing 'Episode VIII' is a sign of the thinking behind the 'Star Wars' series

So who should end up in the chair for 'Episode IX'

The announcement of Rian Johnson as the writer/director of "Star Wars Episode VIII" is exciting for a number of reasons, not least of which is because it indicates something about the way Lucasfilm views the sequel trilogy.

If I were to guess, I would say Marvel isn't going to hire many more writer/directors in the future, even if James Gunn and Joss Whedon both crush it with "Guardians Of The Galaxy" and "Avengers: Age Of Ultron." The fall-out from the "Ant-Man" situation has been fairly brutal, and while I'm curious to see what Peyton Reed and Adam McKay make of the project they're inheriting, the loss of the Edgar Wright version is just plain going to sting.

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<p>Well, that can&#39;t be good.</p>

Well, that can't be good.

Credit: 20th Century Fox

New 'Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes' trailer is emotional and terrifying

But if you're already sold, you may not want to see how much this gives away

We often talk about movies that are game-changers, or we talk about the cutting edge of visual effects, but jumps forward are often marked in tiny baby steps.

That does not appear to be the case with "Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes."

I just recently re-watched "Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes," and the way they incorporated performance into the character animation for Caesar was remarkable. Andy Serkis and Weta Digital brought that character to life in a way that didn't just push the envelope… it shredded it. And in the new film, it looks like they've had to do that on a massive scale, bringing dozens of characters to life with that same degree of finesse.

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'Jurassic World' director teases his dinosaurs on Twitter
Credit: Universal Pictures

'Jurassic World' director teases his dinosaurs on Twitter

Looks like we'll see some old-school full-sized puppets in this one

Only time will tell if Colin Trevorrow gets "Jurassic World" right, but I think at this point it's safe to say that he gets Twitter right.

I'm impressed by the way he handled the leak of the early story details. Instead of going into defensive mode, he steered right into it, and he seemed happy to confirm some things while denying others. More than anything, it felt like he was clarifying because he knows what it's like to be a fan who is soaking up every little tiny bit of information that comes out about something.

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New 'Guardians Of The Galaxy' international trailer features more Rocket Raccoon
Credit: Marvel Studios

New 'Guardians Of The Galaxy' international trailer features more Rocket Raccoon

Disney keeps cutting better and better trailers for this one

It seems appropriate that the first thing I'd post from Hong Kong would be an international trailer for an upcoming movie.

There is no question that "Guardians Of The Galaxy" mania has gripped my home these days, and each new clip or poster seems to whip my kids into a frenzy. That culminated this weekend in a lovely moment when we ran into Bradley Cooper at the Los Angeles premiere of "Earth To Echo." He posed for a photo with the two of them, and my six-year-old got a chance to tell Cooper how much he loves it in the last trailer where Rocket Raccoon fixes his balls in his spacesuit. I'm not sure I've ever been more proud.

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<p>Hiccup and Toothless in &quot;How To Train Your Dragon 2.&quot;</p>

Hiccup and Toothless in "How To Train Your Dragon 2."

Best and Worst of 'How To Train Your Dragon 2'

Wait, there was a worst in this movie?

Audiences are finally getting a chance to see "How To Train Your Dragon 2" this weekend, and pretty much every parent I know is excited about that news.

Why? Well, the first one was an underdog hit for Dreamworks Animation, and it's the sort of film that people walk out of feeling surprised. If you can do that, then you'll get an audience to show up for a sequel because they are actually excited, rather than just bludgeoned into submission by marketing muscle. The flip side to the enormous expectations people have for the sequel is that it makes it that much harder for the filmmakers.

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<p>&#39;22 jump Street&#39;</p>

'22 jump Street'

Credit: Sony Pictures

Best and Worst of '22 Jump Street'

Is the Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill sequel better than the 2012 remake?

One of the first conversations I had on Twitter after arriving home from London on Thursday evening was about whether or not "22 Jump Street" is a good comedy. I really enjoyed the movie, and I think it's got a lot going on just below the surface. It's like the world's most insane subversion of the "Beverly Hills Cop" model ever attempted, and it made me laugh like a maniac.

It's clear, though, that some of us at HitFix laughed harder at the film than others, and that's fine. That's how comedies normally are. There are any number of comedies that I adore that people hate, and I would never try to argue the point with them. For me, laughter is an involuntary thing, and when I spend pretty much the entire running time of a film laughing, I'd call that a successful comedy. It was true of the first "21 Jump Street," and it's equally true of the sequel.

We decided to look at the best and worst things about "22 Jump Street" here, and the whole HitFix editorial team took a shot at it.

For me, the one thing I can't decide if I liked or disliked is a pretty big spoiler so I didn't mention it in my first review. I guess I liked this one thing, but disliked the way it was resolved in the film. As they work undercover to find a new drug being sold to college students, Jenko (Channing Tatum) tries to get close to a football player named Zook (Wyatt Russell). From the moment Jenko and Zook meet, they've got a relationship right out of a romantic comedy, and they play it over the entire film. I wish they would have had Jenko realize at some point in the film that he's actually gay, because I think it would have been a fascinating way to twist the buddy comedy norms. Tatum's such a super-cop in the film that revealing he's gay would challenge expectations in a big way.

What are the things the rest of Team HitFix liked and disliked? Open the gallery below, and let's see how many you agree and disagree with.

"22 Jump Street" is in theaters now.

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Jason Momoa will play Aquaman in 'Dawn Of Justice,' and we know how it will happen
Credit: DC Comics

Jason Momoa will play Aquaman in 'Dawn Of Justice,' and we know how it will happen

Somewhere, Vincent Chase is cursing his agent over this turn of events

So remember a few weeks ago when Jason Momoa made headlines because he said he was tired of being asked if he was going to play Aquaman in "Batman Vs Superman: Dawn Of Justice"?

Well, he's totally playing Aquaman in "Batman Vs Superman: Dawn Of Justice."

While Warner Bros. hasn't made that announcement officially yet, HitFix can confirm that he will be playing the part, and that Zack Snyder has already finalized his designs for the character so shooting can take place soon.

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See the entire Alejandro Jodorowsky conversation with Drew McWeeny from SXSW
Credit: Sony Pictures Classics

See the entire Alejandro Jodorowsky conversation with Drew McWeeny from SXSW

Turns out one of the professional highlights of this year is online in its entirety

While it's not exactly breaking news (this has been online much longer than I realized), I thought I'd round off my Friday night by sharing with you the full panel I moderated at this year's SXSW Film Festival.

I love that they made this available. One of the worst parts of moderating a panel that seems to go well is the ephemeral nature of these things. You do it for the people in the room, and then it's gone. It is particularly sad when you get a chance to talk to someone who is an outright legend, and I can think of no other word that more perfectly applies to Alejandro Jodorowsky.

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Review: 'The Signal' is a thrillingly rendered but familiar science-fiction story
Credit: Focus Features

Review: 'The Signal' is a thrillingly rendered but familiar science-fiction story

Director William Eubank is ready for his blockbuster, Hollywood

When William Eubank made his first film "LOVE," it was a personal obsession filmed in a set that he built on his family's property and left standing for years. It was funded by the band Angels & Airwaves, and their score was also their third album, a big double-album release. When I saw the film, I thought it was remarkable mainly as an example of just what is possible when someone sets their mind to it. The film didn't really work on a script level, but it suggested that Eubank is capable of great things visually, and that he could stretch a dollar well past the breaking point.

His new film "The Signal" made its premiere as a midnight entry at Sundance this year, and I've been chewing on it since seeing it. I have some issues with the film as a narrative, but I am fairly sure at this point that Eubank is a guy who is going to be making big studio event films in the very near future. He creates some remarkable images and moments in this movie, and his sensibility leans towards a sort of painterly love of quiet and sustained imagery. He juggles some pretty big shifts in tone here, and doesn't always pull it off, but it's really interesting to watch him try.

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We dig deeper into the rumored schedule of Warner Bros' 'Justice League' films
Credit: DC Comics

We dig deeper into the rumored schedule of Warner Bros' 'Justice League' films

From 'Batman Vs Superman' to 'Green Lantern and Flash,' is this what we'll be seeing?

Yesterday was a long travel day for me, featuring an eleven-hour flight from London to Los Angeles, and the most memorable part of the day was when we touched down at LAX last night, turned on our phones, and saw that Nikki Finke had blown up the internet with a rumor about the schedule that Warner Bros. will be following for the next few years as they try to ramp up their own DC Films division with as many as seven films between now and 2017.

We'll know at Comic-Con if Nikki's report was right. Let's assume it is for the time being, and break down the plan that she laid out, film by film. It sounds extraordinarily ambitious by any standards, and I'm fascinated by the idea of three DC movies a year. Even Marvel must look at that and think, "Hey, slow your roll there, Warner."

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