Monday, July 16, 2012

Punisher Short: Dirty Laundry

In 2004 Lionsgate released "The Punisher" with Thomas Jane cast as the Marvel comic antihero. The film was poorly received by critics and had a poor showing at the box office. The film was a disappointment every way Lionsgate looked at it. So the studio figured why not try again. Reboot is in vogue, all the studios are doing it. Four years later with Ray Stevenson now wearing the iconic skull on his chest, they released "Punisher: War Zone." Unfortunately, the second attempt was a even bigger flop than the 2004 attempt. After two failed attempts, Lionsgate quietly allowed the rights of Frank Castle aka the Punisher to revert back to Marvel Studios. Fast forward to last weekend at San Diego Comic Con 2012 and Thomas Jane unveiled a new short he's put together with producer Adi Shankar, screenwriter Chad St.John, director Phil Joanou, and artist Tim Bradstreet. What is this short you ask? Well it appears to be Thomas Jane's message that he'd like to be Frank Castle again. Watch the NSFW short "Dirty Laundry" after the jump...

How brutally awesome is this short! Big thanks to all involved for making such a fun piece of Frank Castle.

I love the Punisher. Like any other comic book character you can throw any able actor in the suit and I will watch. I don't have a loyalty to either Thomas Jane, Ray Stevenson (or even Dolph Lundgren) as Punisher. I felt they both were solid as Frank Castle. Ask me which should be Punisher now, if Marvel were to reboot the character again, I'd say Jane. Biggest reason being that Stevenson is already Volstagg in the Thor films, no reason for him to be double-dipping. But honestly, three Punisher movies have released (all of which were rated R) and all three of them bombed. The Punisher will never be a hit at the box office. That said, I wouldn't be opposed to seeing more of him in a smaller format like this insanely cool short "Dirty Laundry."

Marvel has been talking about branching out into shorts. So far we've seen one, the not so enjoyable short about Agent Coulson "The Consultant." A second is on the way "Item 47" which will be included in "The Avengers" Blu-Ray, but it too seems lackluster. Marvel Studios should take a page from Pixar's book and start giving fans 10 to 15 minute shorts ahead of the blockbusters in the theater. Imagine seeing some of the Marvel characters receive small segments that both tied the universe together but also established some of the lesser known characters. There is potential for shorts to become full-length films with the right attention too but not all comic book characters need a 90 plus minutes. There are plenty of characters who could have small segments in front of future Marvel films. these characters could later show up in other Marvel movies with bit parts. Truthfully, there is a ton of day dreaming that can come from Marvel developing shorts to run in front of the tentpole films. Absolutely worlds of possibilities.

I love Thomas Jane and I think his short is ultimate Frank Castle but released to a wide audience it just wouldn't have the sell. If Marvel is fine with making some smaller films that don't have huge returns cool, but I doubt that very much. Either way, I'd like to see more shorts of Frank Castle (and other Marvel characters) like this and if they do want to decide to make another Punisher movie with Thomas Jane, I'll be there.

Source: YouTube