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You try and do what you can at film festivals, and sometimes scheduling sleeping/eating/screenings just doesn't work out. So this past January at Sundance, "Ping Pong Summer" just didn't make it onto our radar, but the buzz seemed to be good both there and at SXSW (where we missed it again), but the movie is coming to theaters so perhaps finally we'll see this thing. Written and directed by Michael Tully, and featuring Susan Sarandon, John Hannah, Lea Thompson, Amy Sedaris, Robert Longstreet and newcomer Marcello Conte, the 1985-set movie follows a shy 13-year-old white kid, obsessed with ping-pong and hip-hop, who comes of age during summer vacation in Ocean City, Maryland. The nostalgia/quirk meter is pretty off-the-charts with this one, but here's hoping the underlying story at least rings true, because we're always down for some old school jams. "Ping Pong Summer" arrives in theaters and on VOD June 6th. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Gravitas Ventures has released the first Ping Pong Summer trailer for writer/director Michael Tully’s 1980s-set indie comedy. The film takes place during the summer of 1985 and revolves around a shy 13-year-old kid (Marcello Conte) who, while on family vacation in Ocean City, strikes up new friendships, gets a crush, and becomes embroiled in the local ping pong scene. The pic looks to be a pretty funny take on the coming-of-age story, and it absolutely nails the ‘80s aesthetic without coming off as cliché or contrived. It actually feels a tad reminiscent of The Way, Way Back, and the ensemble cast is definitely promising. Hit the jump to watch the Ping Pong Summer trailer. The film also stars Susan Sarandon, Amy Sedaris, Lea Thompson, John Hannah, and Judah Friedlander. Ping Pong Summer will be released in theaters and VOD on June 6th. Click over to Apple to watch the »
- Adam Chitwood
Some celebrities have one charity they offer their name or their time to. Susan Sarandon is virtually awash in them. At any given time, she’s involved with Habitat for Humanity, City Harvest, the Aclu, Heifer Intl. and Artists for Peace and Justice.
And then there’s Hope North, an accredited secondary school founded in 1998 by former Ugandan child soldier-turned-artist Okello Sam. Amid her many other commitments, Sarandon has been especially dedicated to Hope North, which assists the youngest victims of Uganda’s civil war in getting an education. Sam has some Hollywood connections (he appeared in “The Last King of Scotland”) and was able to round up volunteers including Sarandon and Forest Whitaker for a New York City gala last September to raise funds for the school.
“We’re working to keep his school afloat,” says Sarandon. “The organizations I spend time with, or have worked with for a long period of time, »
- Randee Dawn
Chris Messina makes his directorial debut with Alex of Venice, a film that follows the gradual unraveling of a woman’s life after her husband suddenly leaves her with their ten-year-old son and her aging father – a slice-of-life story that triggered the similar stress levels Messina experienced while acting and directing the movie and filming The Mindy Project. Photos: Tribeca: Nas, Robert De Niro and Susan Sarandon Attend the Film Festival “That was maybe the dumbest thing – it was grueling, and I would never do that again,” Messina told The Hollywood Reporter at the film’s
- Ashley Lee
When she stepped onto the red carpet at the Tribeca Film Festival, Every Secret Thing director Amy Berg was already in the spotlight for reportedly working with Bryan Singer accuser Michael Egan III on a documentary about sex abuse in Hollywood. But Berg refused to answer questions about that or even her film premiering Sunday night, declining to speak to reporters ahead of the screening. Photos: Nas, Robert De Niro and Susan Sarandon Attend the Tribeca Film Festival Star Diane Lane told The Hollywood Reporter that she was impressed by the choices the Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker made in post-
- Hilary Lewis
Julia Louis-Dreyfus has already won a pair of Emmys for her cunning portrayal of self-consumed, marginalized Vice President Selina Meyer on Veep, and chew on this: She’s just entering Selina’s most dangerous, power-mongering, dangerous days. This season, our nation’s No. 2 is thinking big, and in Sunday night’s episode (HBO, 10:30 p.m.), she takes another uneven step in her run for Oval Office. “I’m so grateful that this part came my way,” says Louis-Dreyfus. “I mean, it’s the role of a lifetime.” That’s saying something, as she has, in said lifetime, also taken »
- Dan Snierson
For cannabis users across the world, April 20 marks a day of embracing marijuana culture. The origins of 4/20, as weed enthusiasts call it, reportedly dates back to the 1970s in California, when smokers started using it as code to gather and indulge. In the years since, the marijuana stigma has largely gone up in smoke. As efforts increase to legalize weed across the Us, public perception of ganja seems to evolve with each joint Miley Cyrus lights up. According to a recent Gallup poll, 58 percent of Americans favor legalization of marijuana, which is up 10 percent from 2012. It's far from a taboo topic in Hollywood, and more and more celebrities are getting candid about their recreational use of marijuana. Most recently, Susan Sarandon confessed to being stoned at "almost all" award shows, joining the likes of Jennifer Aniston, Justin Timberlake, Kristen Stewart, and others who have no qualms with Mary Jane. Keep »
- Nick Maslow
A quarter-century ago, Kevin Costner hit a double-play, following up "Bull Durham" with "Field of Dreams" and becoming king of the sports movie. Twenty-five years later, as "Field of Dreams" marks its 25th anniversary (it was released on April 21, 1989), Costner is back with "Draft Day." The movie's about football, not baseball, and Costner's character plays in the executive suite, not on the field, but his mere presence still offers a reminder of great sports movies past.
And after all, isn't nostalgia a key element of sports movies? "Field of Dreams" makes this explicit -- we long for the sports heroes of our childhood, for a supposed long-gone golden age of our preferred sport, as a way of connecting with our past and bridging the generational divide that separates us as adults from our parents. Sports movies offer more than just the drama of winners and losers, or the journey from dream to achievement, »
- Gary Susman
waterworks all month long... this one's from the vaults
Tonight's shower is provided by mother nature rather than traditional indoor plumbing. That's appropriate since Thelma & Louise (1991) is elemental: all wide open spaces, blazing sun, dusty earth and women as hard driving forces of nature.
While the film belongs to Susan Sarandon's Louise, Geena Davis's Thelma is the maddening/adorable one. Among her many exasperating yet endearing qualities is her uninhibited horniness for one J.D. (early Brad Pitt). In the still above, Louise has booted the caddish hitchhiker out of their car since the friends are getting hotel rooms for the night. J.D. struts away into the rain shower, fully confident that Thelma's eyes are still on him. He even kicks up a boot heel, a private little show for her, as the car drives away.
There he goes. I love watching him go.
Wrangler butts drive her nuts. »
- NATHANIEL R
The indie drama About Alex features a number of well-known TV actors, including Parks and Recreation's Aubrey Plaza, New Girl's Max Greenfield and Parenthood's Jason Ritter. The movie's writer-director, Jesse Zwick, who makes his feature film debut with the project, also has a TV background, not only writing for Parenthood but also being the son of legendary producer Ed Zwick (Thirtysomething, My So-Called Life, Once and Again). Photos: Nas, Robert De Niro and Susan Sarandon Attend the Tribeca Film Festival The elder Zwick executive produced the project, but his writer-director son is quick to clarify his
- Hilary Lewis
New York — In his first film as a director, Junebug screenwriter Angus MacLachlan goes back to North Carolina for the story of a man blindsided by divorce. Paul Schneider shines in the role, stumbling through a dating world that has changed since his character got hitched, thanks mostly to social media. His turn is a fine fit for the seriocomic spirit of a picture that, while less distinctive than the earlier film, should have little trouble connecting with viewers beyond the fest circuit. Photos: Nas, Robert De Niro and Susan Sarandon Attend the Tribeca Film Festival Schneider's Otto Wall is
- John DeFore
Warner Bros. has unveiled a few new images from some of its upcoming Summer 2014 films. Briefly: Jupiter Ascending – A new Jupiter Ascending image from writers/directors Lana and Andy Wachowski’s sci-fi epic shows that Channing Tatum’s half-werewolf/half-albino character has himself a pair of rocket boots, which come in handy when saving Mila Kunis’ queen character. The film opens in 2D, 3D, and IMAX 3D on July 18th. Tammy – A pair of new Tammy images from the upcoming comedy highlight Melissa McCarthy and Susan Sarandon, with McCarthy playing a down-and-out woman who takes a road trip with her foul-mouthed, alcoholic grandmother (Sarandon). Directed by Ben Falcone, the film opens on July 2nd. Jersey Boys – Two new Jersey Boys images from director Clint Eastwood’s feature film adaptation of the stage musical show the titular characters, played by newcomers John Lloyd Young, Erich Bergen, Michael Lomenda, and Vincent Piazza. »
- Adam Chitwood
April 14 is Ex-Spouse Day, a special time to reminisce about the one person you're probably sick of thinking about. Here's another option: Instead of ruminating on personal relationship pitfalls, reflect on the wild world of celebrity breakups. From conscious uncouplings to legal brawls, stars' separations are often dramatic. There are various ways for a celeb to turn a main squeeze into a former fling - the dreaded text message send-off included. In remembrance of Hollywood's exes, here are six recurring types of celebrity splits. Where do you and your ex fit? The "Uncool"The Breakup: Taken from Jennifer Aniston's post-split dig at Angelina Jolie, »
- Kelli Bender
Warner Bros. has released their 2013 Summer Movie Preview , which showcases their slate of movies from May to August. The studio's new releases include Godzilla, Blended, Edge of Tomorrow, Jersey Boys, Tammy, Jupiter Ascending, Into the Storm, and If I Stay.
Godzilla - May 16
In Summer 2014, the world's most revered monster is reborn as Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures unleash the epic action adventure Godzilla. From visionary new director Gareth Edwards (Monsters) comes a powerful story of human courage and reconciliation in the face of titanic forces of nature, when the awe-inspiring Godzilla rises to restore balance as humanity stands defenseless.
Blended - May 23
After a disastrous blind date, single parents Lauren and Jim agree on only one thing: they never want to see each other again. But when they each sign up separately for a fabulous family vacation with their kids, they are all stuck sharing a suite at »
Morgan, an investment banker, became involved after the event as his daughter and a friend were discussing a play date. “I said, well, you can go to her house or she can come to our house.” The two girls became quiet, and his daughter said: “Dad, she lives in the Walmart parking lot with her family. I can’t go to her house.”
Later, in N.Y. on business, Morgan was attending a party at a restaurant part-owned by Sarandon. Talking with a guest who turned out to be “Super Size Me” director Morgan Spurlock, he brought up the idea of a documentary on homelessness. Spurlock announced the notion to Sarandon, who said, “How do I help you?” Says Morgan: “I went home, »
- Nikara Johns
waterworks each night at 11. Here's Andrew on Carey Mulligan's breakthrough
Carey Mulligan will be back headlining a new version of Far From the Madding Crowd later this year and it's now been five years since she won the world's attention. 2009 was the year Carey grew up from youngest Bennett sister to an actress worth following. She'd previously had slight but efficient turns in Brothers and Public Enemies, and a lovely performance opposite Susan Sarandon in the unremembered The Greatest but it was with Jenny Mellor in An Education that she made us fall in love.
The film has only recently begun and Oxford hopeful, Jenny Mellor, is making her way home from band practice. A thunderclap in the preceding scene signals bad weather ahead and we cut to:
- Andrew Kendall
The 2014 Maryland Film Festival, now in its 16th year, announces its first lineup today. The festival, which is set to take place from May 7th-11th, has begun its unveiling with a list of 10 feature film titles. The festival includes an approximate total of 50 feature films and 10 short film programs from around the world. Among the films listed are Lawrence Michael Levine's star-studded "Wild Canaries," Michael Tully’s Maryland-set "Ping Pong Summer" starring Susan Sarandon, and the Lena Dunham/Anna Kendrick comedy "Happy Christmas," which recently premiered at Sundance. Lineup announcements will continue over the next two weeks. Below are the first 10 films announced for Mff 2014 (synopses courtesy of Maryland Film Festival): "Club Sandwich" (Fernando Eimbcke): Poignant drama, gentle comedy, and a hint of transgression mix brilliantly as we observe the coming of age of a 15-year-old teen vacationing with his single mother in a sleepy Mexican beachfront. »
- Ziyad Saadi
Nick Nolte and an Oscar-nominated Susan Sarandon play the couple fighting to save their young son from a rare, degenerative brain disease in this fact-based drama. Peter Ustinov is among the many doctors who say there's no cure for Lorenzo, but that doesn't stop his parents from trying to find one. After Mad Max and The Witches of Eastwick, director George Miller shows his versatility with a heartfelt but clear-eyed telling of an extraordinary true tale. »
Filmmaker tandem Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland know a thing or two about being on opposite ends of luck. It wasn’t for a lack of trying, but after breaking out with Quinceañera at Sundance back in 2006 (it got picked up by Spc and generated good box-office numbers), the pair had difficulties setting up their sophomore feature. They got their groove back when they dug into Hollywood folklore and sifted thru silver screen legend Errol Flynn‘s timeline – the lucky actor who hit jackpot and had a life that mimicked the notion of rags to riches to rags. An example of a film that might have got lost in the abyss of films presented at Tiff last September, but that might nudge out an afterlife theatrically, The Wrap reports that Samuel Goldwyn Films have picked up The Last of Robin Hood. A fall release is expected.
Gist: This revolves around »
- Eric Lavallee
Goldwyn plans an autumn release for Lifetime Films’ The Last Of Robin Hood, which stars Kevin Kline as Errol Flynn in a twilight years romance with starlet Beverly Aadland played by Dakota Fanning. Susan Sarandon also stars.
Vertical Entertainment has acquired all Us rights from Voltage Pictures and Preferred Content to Behaving Badly from Tim Garrick. Nat Wolff, Selena Gomez, Mary-Louise Parker, Elisabeth Shue, Dylan McDermott, Jason Lee, [link »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy Kay)
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