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New York City’s largest arts education organization celebrated its efforts Nov. 16 with one of the craziest artistic endeavors you’ve ever heard of: staging six fully produced short plays in just 24 hours. The 15th annual 24 Hour Plays on Broadway event harnessed dozens of talented artists, including directors Thomas Kail, Patricia McGregor, and Kathy Najimi, and a cast of performers that included Edie Falco, Taran Killam, John Krasinski, Jay Pharoah, Phylicia Rashad, Molly Ringwald, and Vanessa Williams. Held at the American Airlines Theatre with the set of Roundabout Theatre’s “Old Times” as a backdrop, the evening benefited Urban Arts Partnership (Uap), the organization dedicated to using the arts to close the achievement gap in some of the city’s most impoverished public schools. “We bring the arts back into schools in a way that can never be taken out again,” said CEO Phillip Courtney in his opening remarks onstage. »
Despite a very meager $5 million budget, Universal were putting a lot of promotion and hype behind their big screen adaptation of Jem and the Holograms. But after two very poor weeks at the domestic box office, Universal have pulled the plug.
The film opened to a sea of negative reviews and a mere $1.3 million from 2,400 screens, failing to crack the top 10. Its second week was even worse as it dropped 71% to just $387,925 from the same number of screens. With a total of $2.08 million to its name, Jem and the Holograms has been removed from theatres.
Jem and the Holograms is still set to be released in the UK in February 2016 and several other European territories this coming December.
- Luke Owen
In King Cobra, “Christian Slater plays a porno producer who discovers the next big star Brent Corrigan (Garrett Clayton), then finds himself the target of rival producer and former male escort (Franco) with a bad temper and a burning desire to become a porn kingpin, who’ll stop at nothing to steal his rival’s star. A notorious murder is the result.”
“James, Christian, Garrett, Keegan Allen, Molly Ringwald and Alicia Silverstone have consistently pushed the boundaries of film and culture at large with iconic performances,” states director Kelly. “It’s been amazing watching them transform into these unique, fascinating characters.”
- Gary Collinson
Actor-director-producer James Franco is fast becoming one of the most prolific performers currently working in Hollywood. His tendency to operate with a full plate often includes working with the same people on multiple projects, and his latest commitment is no exception. King Cobra is the second feature film from writer-director Justin Kelly – following on from his recent debut I Am Michael, which also starred Franco. Like that film, King Cobra is based on true events – this time, those that surrounded the brutal murder of a gay adult film studio owner in 2007.
The title King Cobra refers to Cobra Video – a gay pornography label founded by the late Bryan Kocis. Kocis was an entrepreneur who, in 2002, pleaded guilty to a charge of child abuse relating to a 15 year old. In 2004, Kocis began to hire a young man with the screen name Brent Corrigan to perform in his video productions, although it »
- Sarah Myles
Exclusive: Add another movie to the prolific dance card of James Franco. He just wrapped King Cobra, starring with Christian Slater, Garrett Clayton, Keegan Allen, Molly Ringwald and Alicia Silverstone. The film, by writer-director Justin Kelly (Franco starred in his debut I Am Michael), focuses on a murder that rocked the adult entertainment industry in the early 2000s. Jordan Yale Levine of Yale Productions, Scott Levenson, Franco, Vince Jolivette and Iris Torres of… »
The big screen adaptation of Jem and the Holograms didn’t go down well with fans of the original show – or movie goers in general – taking just $1.7 million on its opening weekend and failing to crack the top 10. The following day, director Jon M. Chu to deliver a keynote speech for Film Independent Forum, and shared the disappointments of the culmination of a decade-long adaptation, and the bile he received for it.
“I get fans sending me hate mail, I get death threats, I get racist remarks — it’s a really fun business,” he said. “Reviewers have been harsh, to say it lightly.”
Averaging just $570 across the 2,400 screens it was shown on, Jem and the Holograms is the worst opening ever for a major studio release playing in at least 2,000 theaters.
“Yes, we only made the movie for five [million dollars], but it doesn’t get easy when you hear those [box office] numbers, »
- Luke Owen
In 1960, Jean-Luc Godard’s first feature film, Breathless, would make him an icon of French cinema, inaugurating a career that has consistently expanded society’s definitions and expectations of cinema. That film alone would have reason enough to consider him an important filmmaker, but Godard went on to direct fourteen more features through 1967, culminating with his attack on bourgeois culture, Weekend.
Following this extraordinary run of films, Godard found himself at a moment of great change. His romantic and artistic partnership with Anna Karina had ended, to be replaced with a new (but short-lived) marriage to Anne Wiazemsky, who would serve as a bridge to the current youth culture. Godard’s politics had also changed considerably since the 1950s. His conservatism, a relic of his parents’s politics, had been replaced with an interest in Maoism and an increasing distaste for anything evoking America. (Classic Hollywood cinema initially got a pass, »
- Brian Marks
Another iconic ‘80s title to add to the list! Molly Ringwald opens up about reviving the decade that helped shape her career in the live-action remake of Jem and the Holograms in the new issue of Us Weekly. “I feel like I really connect with young people well because of my movies,” the 47-year-old, who starred in iconic films such as Sixteen Candles, explains to Us. “They feel like they grew up with me. They trust me, in a way, which is really nice." Jem and the Holograms [...] »
Here are the films opening theatrically in the U.S. the week of Friday, October 23. All synopses provided by distributor unless listed otherwise. Wide Jem and the Holograms Director: John M. Chu Cast: Aubrey Peeples, Stefanie Scott, Aurora Perrineau, Hayley Kiyoko, Ryan Guzman, Molly Ringwald, Juliette Lewis, Nicholas Braun, Isabella Kai Rice, Samantha Newark, Britta Phillips, Nathan Moore, Barnaby Carpenter, Robin Lynn Synopsis: "In a hyper-linked social media age, an orphaned teenage girl, Jerrica Jem Benton, becomes an online recording sensation, and she and her sisters embark on a music-driven scavenger hunt - one that sends them on an adventure across Los Angeles - in an attempt to unlock a final message left by her father." The Last Witch Hunter Director: Breck Eisner Cast: Vin Diesel, Rose Leslie, Elijah Wood, Michael Caine, Lotte Verbeek, Bex Taylor-Klaus, Allegra Carpenter, Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Aimee Carrero, Isaach de Bankolé, »
- Steve Greene
Why do we still care about "The Breakfast Club"?
Thirty years after its release, it remains the definitive movie about the American high school experience. In his tale of five diverse kids bonding during a Saturday in detention, writer/director John Hughes captured some eternal elements of being a teenager -- the awkwardness, the alienation, the casual cruelty, the social hierarchies, the longing for connection, and most of all, the penchant for self-dramatization.
Of course, none of this would have worked without the sensitive performances of the five stars, the nucleus of what the adult press quickly and derisively dubbed "The Brat Pack." One of its members, Molly Ringwald, has a new movie hitting theaters - "Jem and the Holograms." In honor of its release, here is what we would learn if we got "The Breakfast Club" cast together for a high school reunion.
- Gary Susman
No one else is the same… Em is her name! But, does the new Jem live up to her 80’s legend? Now you have two ways to find out! Not only will you find my written review below, but I also shot and edited a review just for you! (Go easy on me since I’ve never shot myself before!) It’s a ‘choose you’re own adventure’ kind of review!
Jerrica Benton, a small town girl is thrust into the spotlight after being discovered on YouTube, and is on the ride of her life with her sisters. The problem is that her video was posted under the alias ‘Jem,’ and now that’s who the world wants. Jerrica is now on a mission to find her voice in the world, and getting into mischief along the way.
I’m not going to lie. I was worried about this when I saw the trailer. »
- Melissa Howland
With no nostalgic bias or any real affinity for Jem’s totally tubular television show, my first true interaction with Jerrica Benton is Blumhouse’s (assuredly budget-controlled) adaptation, this year’s Jem And The Holograms. You know, the version where Google Maps substitute for overhead views, musical interludes are comprised of existing YouTube videos edited together, and where fan-submitted videos make up entire scenes of footage – yup, it’s all Blumhouse-d to hell. Poor Jon M. Chu was most certainly handcuffed monetarily on certain decisions, but even so, that doesn’t excuse a blasé coming-of-age story that should have been “outta sight” given Jem’s (originally) holographic disguise – which is totally changed. Here’s the watered-down, Blumhouse version of Jem that fans certainly weren’t asking for, built on healthy doses of believing in yourself, misty-eyed hugs, and utterly mundane generics.
Aubrey Peeples stars as Jerrica, a small-town girl who »
- Matt Donato
Horror fans can travel back in time this Halloween season to an era when it was kind to rewind, as Shout! Factory TV is now streaming the VHS versions of select horror films, including Day of the Dead, Sleepaway Camp, Night of the Demons, and more.
To watch Shout! Factory TV's special VHS presentations, visit TheVHSVault.com. We also have the official press release with full details:
Press Release: Shout! Factory TV proudly presents a #ThrowbackThursday of epic proportions! Sit back, relax and return to your retro roots with the VHS Vault. Shout! Factory TV is being kind to rewind you all the way back to the days of VHS, just in time to revisit your favorite Halloween flicks—five cult classics in their VHS pan and scan full-screen ratios, to be exact. Forget about high definition, and relive the style that gives these films the character that cult fans all over yearn for. »
- Derek Anderson
A ‘throw everything against the wall’ quality and downright catchy songs lift this sunny adaptation of the 80s cartoon despite a fairly ridiculous story
Based on the 1980s cartoon produced by toy manufacturer Hasbro, Jon M Chu’s updated, live-action film adaptation is by no means anything you’d call a great film. The moralizing is omnipresent, the script is desultory and its understanding of the way business and media work is positively jejune. But those are all big words that have no impact on its intended audiences. The music is catchy, the costumes are dazzling, the friendships are sweet and Rio (Ryan Guzman), the protective older boy who eventually falls in love with our lead character, is soooooo cuuuuuuute. This movie sure means well, and it’s just entertaining enough to (slightly) slip off the shackles of the great cultural conformity factory it ultimately represents. “Truly Outrageous” is a stretch, »
- Jordan Hoffman in New York
A campy cartoon encapsulating ‘80s excess transforms into an earnest live-action ode to the navel-gazing YouTube generation in “Jem and the Holograms.” Considerably less fun than any paper-thin “Star Is Born” ripoff has any right to be, this low-budget collaboration between “Step Up” sequel director Jon M. Chu, horror producer Jason Blum and Justin Bieber manager Scooter Braun exists only because of nostalgia for the animated source material. And yet the film seems inexplicably embarrassed by its roots, instead serving up half-baked and self-consciously contemporary drama that no one in the sure-to-be minimal theatrical audience will remember quite so fondly some 30 years on.
Similarities between the live-action and animated “Jem” pretty much begin and end with character names, but both revolve around talented young singer Jerrica Benton (played here by Aubrey Peeples), who becomes a pop superstar under the stage name Jem. In the film, YouTube is her ticket to »
- Geoff Berkshire
Plot: Jerrica Benton (Aubrey Peeples) is a young orphan who, along with her younger sister Kimber (Stefanie Scott), lives with her Aunt Bailey (Molly Ringwald) and Bailey's two foster kids, Aja (Hayley Kiyoko) and Shana (Aurora Perrineau). When the family home winds-up in danger of foreclosure, Jerrica adopts an alter-ego named Jem, who promptly becomes a viral sensation when footage of her singing... Read More »
- Chris Bumbray
As a small-town girl catapults from underground video sensation to global superstar, she and her three sisters begin a one-in-a-million journey of discovering that some talents are too special to keep hidden. In Universal Pictures’ Jem And The Holograms, four aspiring musicians will take the world by storm when they see that the key to creating your own destiny lies in finding your own voice.
Last week, Wamg got to sit down with stars Aubrey Peeples (Jem) and Ryan Guzman (Rio) in a small press conference to talk about their experience working on the film. Check out some of the highlights below!
Jon Chu said you were a very analog girl but also very modern. Can you talk a little about the process you went through to get the role and were you familiar with Jem beforehand?
Aubrey Peeples: I was not familiar with Jem beforehand. As soon as »
- Melissa Howland
With four new movies opening nationwide on October 23, and another expanding into a national release, it's shaping up to be quite a unique weekend at the box office. The new arrivals are Universal's Jem and the Holograms, starring Juliette Lewis, Lionsgate's The Last Witch Hunter, starring Vin Diesel, Paramount's Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension, the final installment in the long-running Paranormal Activity franchise, and Open Road Films' Rock the Kasbah. Universal's Steve Jobs will also be expanding nationwide on Friday, after posting incredible grosses over the last two weeks in limited release. According to the projections from BoxOffice.com, The Last Witch Hunter is expected to take the top spot with $18 million, which will be more than enough to unseat current box office champion Goosebumps.
There's nothing little about this "Pretty Little Liars" star! James Franco took to Instagram to share a shirtless snapshot with Keegan Allen on the set of their upcoming gay porn drama "King Cobra," which the "Spring Breakers" star is directing. While James is no stranger to showing off his bod on social media, we can't stop staring at Allen's six-pack abs ... and what he's packing below them. Both actors flaunt their goods in the pic, sporting nothing but briefs and, in Franco's case, sweat pants. "King Cobra" will chronicle the murder of gay porn director Bryan Kocis, who was found dead on January 24, 2007, after police were called to a fire at his Pennsylvania home. According to the coroner, Kocis was stabbed 28 times and his throat was cut before the house was set on fire. Two male escorts, Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes, were later found guilty for the murder. Prosecutors »
- tooFab Staff
The story deals with the real life murder of gay adult film producer Bryan Kocis (Slater) who owned Cobra Video. Clayton will play gay adult film star Brent Corrigan who, at the time, was both underage and the company's biggest star.
In 2007, 25-year-old Harlow Raymond Cuadra and 33-year-old Joseph Manuel Kerekes killed Kocis in what's been described as a "misguided attempt to make it big" and to lure Corrigan away from the company. No word on what role Ringwald will play.
New movie brother! @ChristianSlater @JamesFrancoTV #kingcobra pic.twitter.com/yr95Ziu6C3
— Molly Ringwald (@MollyRingwald) October 13, 2015 »
- Garth Franklin
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