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News Roundup: Norton confirmed for ''Hulk'' sequel

Plus: Evangeline Lilly to make feature debut alongside John Malkovich, analysts predict record year at U.S. box office, Ted Danson tapped for feature comedy, and more…

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Norton to star as Bruce Banner
Edward Norton will play Bruce Banner in The Incredible Hulk, taking over the role played by Eric Bana in the first Hulk movie. Louis Leterrier (Transporter 2) will direct with an eye on a June 13, 2008 release. The movie begins with Banner on the run, trying to avoid capture long enough to cure the condition that turns him into the Hulk. The script was written by Zak Penn, who helped write the two X-Men films, Fantastic Four, and Elektra for Marvel Studios. Marvel reportedly wants the Hulk sequel to be less self-serious and more in line with the comic book and TV series than the Ang Lee-directed first movie. (Variety)

Malkovich, Lilly set for Afterwards
Lost‘s Evangeline Lilly is set to make her feature debut alongside John Malkovich in French director Gilles Bourdos’ supernatural thriller Afterwards. The story is about a workaholic lawyer (Romain Duris), drifting away from his ex-wife (Lilly) and daughter, who meets a mysterious doctor (Malkovich) who claims to have the power to predict people’s deaths. A co-production of France’s Fidelite Films and Canada’s Christal Film Prods., Afterwards will start shooting June 4 for a 2008 release. (Hollywood Reporter)

Analyst group predicts record box office sales for 2007
Domestic box office sales will bring in a record $10 billion this year, according to Wedbush Morgan Securities’ 40-page report on the state of the movie theater business. Last year, the U.S. box office grew 5.5 percent to $9.5 billion, reversing a downtrend. This year, Wedbush expects it to rise 5.2 percent to $9.98 billion, surpassing the record $9.54 billion set in 2004. This year will see new installments of lucrative franchises such as Spider-Man, Shrek, Harry Potter, and The Bourne Ultimatum, all of which had predecessors last seen in 2004. (Hollywood Reporter)

Ted Danson cast in feature comedy
Ted Danson has been cast in Mad Money, a comedy that Callie Khouri (Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood) will direct from her own script. The movie also stars Queen Latifah, Diane Keaton, and Katie Holmes. The story is about three co-workers, each with their own agenda, who team up to steal money scheduled to be destroyed at the Federal Reserve Bank. Production is scheduled to start this week. (Hollywood Reporter)

Kasdan to write Clash of the Titans remake
Warner Bros. has tapped writer Lawrence Kasdan (Return of the Jedi, The Empire Strikes Back, Raiders of the Lost Ark) to pen a remake of the 1981 cult classic Clash of the Titans. The story revolves around Zeus’ son, Perseus, and his journey to save Princess Andromeda. Zeus forces his son to face various trials along the way, including capturing Pegasus and slaying Medusa. Titans is Kasdan’s first fantasy project since the early 1980s. Since then, he’s written 1992’s The Bodyguard, 1994’s Wyatt Earp, and 1999’s Mumford. (Hollywood Reporter)

Eric Red tapped for 100 Feet
Eric Red will write and direct the thriller 100 Feet, starring Famke Janssen (X-Men) and Bobby Cannavale (Snakes on a Plane, Will & Grace). Red previously wrote the cult horror movie The Hitcher. This will be Red’s first major project since he crashed his car into a Los Angeles pool hall in 2000, killing two people. After a six-month investigation, Red was found liable for damages in civil court, but he was never brought up on criminal charges. (Variety)

Fox launching music trivia show
Fox greenlit the pilot Off the Charts, a music trivia show that will challenge contestants to recite lines from pop songs. After the contestant selects a particular decade, the house band will begin to play a song, and when it stops, the contestant has to fill in the next line of the song verbatim or be eliminated. Prize money escalates as the songs become more obscure. Earlier this month, NBC committed to The Great American Singing Bee, which challenges contestants to ”sing in the blanks” when presented with partial song lyrics, and CBS is working on a new rendition of Name That Tune. (Variety)

Gosnell to direct Disney comedy
Raja Gosnell (Scooby Doo, Big Momma’s House) will direct South of the Border, a live action Disney comedy featuring talking animals. The story is about a pampered Beverly Hills Chihuahua who gets lost while on vacation in Mexico and must rely on her friends to get back home. (Hollywood Reporter)

Don Ho dies at 76
Hawaiian crooner Don Ho died Saturday (April 14) of heart failure at the age of 76. The singer was known for wearing raspberry-tinted sunglasses and singing his signature tune, ”Tiny Bubbles.” He also hosted The Don Ho Show on ABC from 1976-77, and had a memorable 1972 cameo on an episode of The Brady Bunch. (Variety)

Frasier cast may reunite on stage
David Hyde Pierce said that he met Kelsey Grammer and John Mahoney recently and talked about doing a stage production together. Mahoney has returned to Broadway after a 20-year absence to appear in the play Prelude to a Kiss and Grammer recently starred in a concert version of My Fair Lady staged by the New York Philharmonic. Pierce, who is starring in a new Broadway musical Curtains, suggested that the trio would most likely do a play, not a musical. (Reuters)

Reznor joined QOTSA in the studio
Trent Reznor joined Queens of the Stone Age in the studio during their recording of upcoming album Era Vulgaris, and although his contribution did not make the final cut, frontman Josh Homme suggests that the band will release the song somewhere else. One collaboration that did make the album, which is due out June 12, is the song ”Sick, Sick, Sick,” which features Strokes’ Julian Casablancas singing and playing a digital guitar. (Billboard)

IN THE GOSSIPS

Page Six: Harvey Weinstein is said to be setting up a movie adaptation of the Tony-winning musical Nine with Gwyneth Paltrow, Anne Hathaway, Nicole Kidman, Judi Dench, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Renée Zellweger playing the female leads and George Clooney, Javier Bardem, Antonio Banderas, and Johnny Depp being considered for the male roles.

New York Daily News: He wanted to play the field; she was fed up with his partying: just two of the theories attempting to explain Prince William’s split with girlfriend Kate Middleton.