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“X-Men” producer talks “First Class” sequel, delaying “The Wolverine,” and redeeming “Deadpool”

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“X-Men: First Class” hits shelves on DVD and Blu-Ray this weekend, so it’s no surprise that “X-Men” franchise producer Lauren Shuler Donner was doing the media rounds to talk up the film’s arrival. Of course, as is the case with these types of press circuits, Donner ended up chatting quite a bit about the other upcoming films featuring Marvel’s famous mutants.

Here’s a quick breakdown of what was said about each film:

With regard to a potential “X-Men: First Class” sequel, Donner told HitFix they hope to bring director Matthew Vaughn back for a follow-up film, despite the first film’s less-than-expected returns at the box office.

The next X-Men film on her plate, however, is “The Wolverine” — a follow-up to the financially successful yet critically panned “X-Men Origins: Wolverine.” As has been indicated many times, Donner reiterated that the film will act as a standalone chapter in the franchise and not a traditional sequel.

“[We want] to distinguish it from the other one,” she explained to HitFix when asked about the title. “It’s much more of a standalone [movie].”

Originally expected to begin shooting this fall, “The Wolverine” is now likely to start filming in summer 2012 due to star Hugh Jackman’s busy schedule.

“I’m not sure when we’ll start,” she said. “Maybe summer 2012 we’ll start shooting. It’s based on Hugh’s schedule, frankly. When he’s available, we’ll film. …He’s doing ‘Les Miserables’, and then he has to come and train for us. So it’s all dependent on him.”

Spinning off of “X-Men Origins: Wolverine,” a solo film for Marvel’s mouthy mercenary Deadpool has long been in the works but often the subject of heated online discussion, given the uncertainty that Ryan Reynolds will reprise his role as the character.

“We’re working on getting it ready and presenting some things to the studio,” she indicated, “because we’re gonna give it a little bit of a different look. It’s a different kind of movie. If you know ‘Deadpool’ …it’s true to ‘Deadpool’. So you know, it’ll be violent, and outrageous, and funny, and all that.”

Still, Donner seemed sure that Reynolds will be back in action as Wade “Deadpool” Wilson.

“[We’re doing ‘Deadpool’] with Ryan absolutely,” she told IAmRogue. “Can you see anybody else in it?”

And just in case you’re concerned about the tone the film will take with the fan-favorite character, Donner offered up some comments to TotalFilm that should calm fans’ concerns a bit.

“[H]e was treated totally wrong in the Wolverine film and yes we will redeem him,” she said. “We have a few more things to do and then it’s up to the studio to decide whether we’re going to go forward or not.”

What do you think about Donner’s plans for the X-Men movie universe? Chime in below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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Comedy Bang Bang 7th Anniversary

7 Years in Heaven

Comedy Bang! Bang! Podcast Celebrates 7 Years With Fan Favorite Guests

Comedy Bang! Bang! returns to IFC with back-to-back episodes on Friday, June 3rd at 11P.

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Earwolf

It’s been (Barenaked Ladies style) seven years since Comedy Bang! Bang! premiered on Southern California’s Indie 103 radio station as a music and variety show, then known as Comedy Death-Ray. And in those seven years, host Scott Aukerman has evolved the radio show into a podcast, a TV series, and a comedy mainstay for fans of surreal, offbeat humor. To celebrate the special occasion, Scott invited fan favorites Jason Mantzoukas, Horatio Sanz and Paul F. Tompkins, as well as a slew of popular characters and segments, to CB!B!’s 7th Anniversary Show.

Click here to listen to the 7th anniversary show on Earwolf. And just a reminder, Comedy Bang! Bang! returns to IFC for a fifth season on June 3rd with back-to-back episodes on Fridays at 11P ET/PT and 11:30P ET/PT. Season Five will feature “Weird Al” Yankovic as the new bandleader and a bevy of guests like Kevin Bacon, Kristen Schaal, Tony Hale, Aubrey Plaza, T-Pain, and more.

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That 70s Show Cast Reunion

Hangin' Out

That ’70s Show Reunion Photo Proves the Kids Are Still Alright

Catch That '70s Show Mondays & Tuesdays starting at 6P on IFC.

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Laura Prepon / Instagram

The stars of That ’70s Show had their own throwback reunion as Fez, Jackie, Kelso, Donna, and Hyde recently got back together for a candid on-set photo. Posted to Laura Prepon‘s Instagram account, actors Wilmer Valderrama, Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher, Danny Masterson, and Prepon posed on the set of Netflix’s The Ranch — which stars Kutcher and Masterson as brothers who manage their family ranch. Older and wiser but no less striking, the cast seems to have weathered the ’80s (and the ’00s) very well.

Keeping this from being a complete That ’70s Show reunion is Topher Grace’s absence, but this photo works as a reunion of the cast from the post-Eric final season. With The Ranch renewed for a second season, we could be seeing more ’70s reunion moments. Maybe Tommy Chong will stop by?

Family #that70sshow 💓💓

A photo posted by Laura Prepon (@lauraprepon) on

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Fin Facts

Jason Alexander Is IFC’s Shark Expert For the Memorial Day Shark Half-a-Day Marathon

Catch IFC's Shark Half-a-Day marathon this Memorial Day starting at 6A.

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As we approach beach season, it’s important to remember some safety tips for dealing with our bloodthirsty friends from the deep. For instance, did you know there’s a breed of shark whose diet consists entirely of helicopters?

To celebrate IFC’s Memorial Day “Shark Half-a-Day,” a tasty, binge-worthy 12 hours or-so block (who needs an entire week?) airing of all of the Jaws franchise films, IFC’s “sharks-pert” Jason Alexander is sharing his possibly-not-entirely-accurate knowledge in all-new IFC promos. Who knew Jason was our nation’s foremost expert on shark-related trivia?

Check out some “fin facts” below, and be sure to catch the “Shark Half-a-Day” Memorial Day marathon on Monday, May 30th starting at 6AM. (See below for a complete movie rundown.)

Shark Half-A-Day: Monday, May 30th starting @ 6am
Jaws
Jaws 2
Jaws 3-D
Jaws: The Revenge

Additional Jaws marathons:
Thursday, May 5th starting @ 8pm
Friday, May 20th starting @ 8pm

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