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"Salem," Wgn's first original scripted drama, is an unapologetic piece of trash, perhaps best summed up by the scene in the pilot where a naked Janet Montgomery — playing an actual Salem witch in a way that weirdly justifies all of the religion-fueled paranoia of the period — lets a toad suckle at a nipple on her thigh. While a channel's first scripted show isn't always representative of what follows, they tend to create expectations for what's to come, and it would have been easy to assume that Wgn's plan was to lean heavily on campy genre fare. But "Manhattan," Wgn's second original drama (it debuts Sunday night at 9), is as far in tone and ambition and quality from "Salem" as the New Mexico desert of 1943 is from 17th century Massachusetts. At a minimum, it suggests you shouldn't assume anything about whatever the channel's going to do next. Created Sam Shaw and »
- Alan Sepinwall
Rome — The Venice Film Festival’s independently run Venice Days, modeled on Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, has unveiled its lineup of 14 pics unspooling in the official selection which sees known names screening alongside emerging helmers, including U.S. writer-director Shawn Christensen whose “Before I Disappear” (pictured) is making its international bow.
As previously announced, the out-of-competition opener is prolific South Korean auteur Kim Ki-duk’s multiple murder thriller “One On One,” about the brutal rape and murder of a schoolgirl, which is launching internationally from the Lido after being released in South Korea.
The closer, also not competing, is “Messi,” a docu-feature portrait of hot Argentine soccer player Leo Messi, helmed by Spain’s Alex De La Iglesia and written by Jorge Valdano, a former prominent member of the Argentine team who went on to become a sports journalist as well as a manager and sports director of Spain’s Real Madrid club. »
- Nick Vivarelli
TNT gives us another entry in the long arc murder mystery with Murder in the First (a random title, by the way), which focuses on two detectives and the dot com stereotype who is too close to a couple of murders. Hildy Mulligan (Kathleen Robertson) and Terry English (Taye Diggs) stumble onto a case that seems very simple, but soon leads them to tech genius Erich Blunt (Tom Felton). If the show has a gimmick, it’s the depth to which we are exposed to the lives of Hildy and Terry. We enter our little world as Terry is trying to come to grips with the idea that his wife is going to succumb to the cancer she’s been fighting, and Hildy… well, she has her own problems, but mainly we just follow along as she tries to balance her life.
On the other hand, the gimmick could also »
- Marc Eastman
Earlier this spring, the complete run of "Hill Street Blues" was released on DVD, and it was remarkable to see just how well the groundbreaking cop drama held up three decades later. Some elements of it felt dated, but on the whole, you could find common DNA with many of this century's best dramas. That's because for a long stretch in the '80s and '90s, "Hill Street" co-creator Steven Bochco was way out ahead of the curve, experimenting with what was and wasn't possible within the confines of a broadcast network drama, and in the process paving the way for this cable golden age in which we live. "Hill Street" popularized multi-layered, morally complex serialized storytelling in primetime. "NYPD Blue" broke down the barriers between network and cable with its raw language, sexuality and criminal subject matter, and the popularity of Andy Sipowicz (who would've been a villain »
- Alan Sepinwall
When Steven Bochco created “Murder One” nearly 20 years ago, the concept — a series following a single murder trial over an entire season — seemed bold and ahead of its time. Today, TV is teeming with similar fare as TNT introduces “Murder in the First,” which traces a murder investigation over 10 episodes, and has the minor misfortune to follow HBO’s genre-invigorating “True Detective.” Stripped of those contextual concerns, the previewed hours establish the series as crisp and watchable, while perhaps shrewdly shifting and expanding the earlier show’s lens from defense attorneys to the detectives assigned the case.
Shepherded by Bochco and Eric Lodal, with a Thomas Schlamme-directed pilot, “Murder” also has the advantage of feeling quite compatible with TNT’s lineup in general, and the series with which it’s being paired (“Major Crimes”) in particular. Indeed, even if the Turner network’s roster tends to skew toward meat and potatoes, »
- Brian Lowry
In a deal brokered by CAA, Demarest Films and Kilburn Media have announced a partnership on an overall deal with The Combine, the production company founded by Jeremy Renner and writer-director Don Handfield. Originated in 2011, Renner and Handfield's film and television production company has already produced the upcoming film, “Kill the Messenger,” starring Renner, and has additional films in the works, including “The Throwaways,” slated for Crackle later this year. Also read: Richard Schiff Joins Jeremy Renner in CIA Tale ‘Kill the Messenger’ (Exclusive) As part of the deal, Demarest and Kilburn will cover The Combine's overhead costs, as well as providing. »
- Jason Hughes
The West Wing earned 26 Emmys and the respect of Washington’s elite. But there were several points early in the Aaron Sorkin series’ run when the drama about the personal and professional lives of those working in the White House could have taken a drastically different turn. Bradley Whitford as Sam Seaborn? Considered. Toby Ziegler, the widower? Richard Schiff was sure of it. And a director other than Tommy Schlamme? He wouldn’t have had a choice. The Hollywood Reporter conducted nearly two dozen interviews with actors, producers and executives affiliated with the series for a comprehensive oral history that sheds light on
- Lacey Rose, Michael O'Connell
Since Frank Underwood became president on Netflix’s House of Cards, I’ve had this geek fantasy of him debating Josiah Bartlet, Martin Sheen’s idealistic and professorial president from The West Wing. Bartlet’s Washington, D.C., was the proverbial shining city on a hill, a place where intelligent, well-intentioned people gravitated to do the peoples’ business. Underwood’s capital is the nasty underbelly of a trough coated by man’s craven pursuit of power for power’s sake. It’s practically Kennedy’s Camelot versus Nixononian realpolitik. To paraphrase Anthony Hopkins’ Nixon in Oliver Stone’s 1995 movie, “When look at The West Wing, »
- Jeff Labrecque
Opening in limited release on May 2nd, Decoding Annie Parker is a life affirming story told with grace and humor about two remarkable women who wage a courageous 15-year battle against breast cancer on both scientific and emotional fronts. Geneticist Mary-Claire King (Helen Hunt) is convinced there’s a link between DNA and cancer and makes one of the most important genetic discoveries of the 20th century, while irrepressible cancer survivor Annie Parker (Samantha Morton) struggles to hold her family and life together with dignity and courage even as her body betrays her. Directed by Steven Bernstein from a screenplay co-written with Adam Bernstein and Michael Moss, the inspiring indie drama based on true events also stars Aaron Paul, Maggie Grace, Alice Eve, Rashida Jones, Marley Shelton, Corey Stoll, Ben McKenzie and Richard Schiff. In an exclusive interview, Bernstein talked about why he believed deeply in the subject matter he »
- Sheila Roberts
Movie blogging is a curious thing, especially when you know a movie will attract pageviews, therefore more advertising impressions, therefore more money. Such a film is obviously Batman vs. Superman so the news yesterday that stage actor Ray Fisher will play a character named Cyborg in the upcoming film had bloggers scrambling to get the headline up, even though the character won't have a very large role in the upcoming film. Cyborg (aka Victor Stone), according to Variety who broke the story, is a member of the Justice League, and the role will become much more significant role as Warner and DC develop more films related to the Justice League universe. Apparently this character gets caught in an explosion at S.T.A.R. Labs, the workplace of Justice League characters Professor Hamilton (played by Richard Schiff in Man of Steel) and the superhero Rampage. The result of the explosion »
- Brad Brevet
Victor Stone or Cyborg, while not a major part in the Batman-Superman feature, is a member of the Justice League, and the role will become much more significant role as Warner and DC develop more films related to the Justice League universe, sources confirm.
Warner Bros. had no comment on this story.
- Justin Kroll
ComingSoon.net has your exclusive first look at a new clip from Decoding Annie Parker , the May 2 release starring Samantha Morton, Helen Hunt, Aaron Paul, Bradley Whitford, Rashida Jones, Richard Schiff, Alice Eve, Maggie Grace, Marley Shelton, Chris Mulkey and Corey Stoll. Based on true events, Decoding Annie Parker is the hopeful and touching story of two remarkable women and their 15-year battle against a cruel and insidious illness, breast cancer. Waged on both scientific and emotional fronts, they are drawn together not just by the disease but by their shared determination and unconventional approaches to their research and to their lives. Annie Parker (Samantha Morton) has a personal relationship with breast cancer. Her mother and her sister died of the disease and »
The announcement comes as sales agents scramble to assemble fresh line-ups for the Croisette at a time when new product is thin on the ground.
Before I Disappear director Shawn Christensen based the film on his 2013 Academy Award-winning live action short Curfew and stars alongside Fatima Ptacek, Emmy Rossum, Paul Wesley, Ron Perlman and Richard Schiff.
ICM Partners and Verve represent North American rights to the story of a man who must look after his niece on a night when he becomes embroiled in a fight between his two employers.
“We are absolutely thrilled to be representing Before I Disappear,” said Electric’s head of international distribution Sonia Mehandjiyska. “It’s a crowd-pleasing film with a great cast and wonderful performances and we at Electric look forward to bringing this award-winning »
- email@example.com (Jeremy Kay)
Months after the end of "Breaking Bad," Aaron Paul is dealing with cancer again, but this time there won't be any meth, guns or chemistry. But there will be plenty of hair care products. With Paul starring alongside Helen Hunt and Samantha Morton, "Decoding Annie Parker" looks to be an eccentric, inspirational true story about conquering disease. Morton plays a free spirit diagnosed with breast cancer, who works with a radical geneticist (Hunt) to prove that the disease can be inherited. But, honestly, the plot takes a backseat to Paul's luscious locks. Throughout the video, he sports several different 'dos, including a very long, very soft-looking hippie hair. In another scene, Paul models a short, punky coiffure that looks borrowed from Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong. Watch the trailer here: "Annie" also stars Rashida Jones, Bradley Whitford, Alice Eve, Richard Schiff, Maggie Grace, Chris Mulkey and Corey Stoll. It »
- Dave Lewis
The film focuses on two incredible women who battle to understand the genetic links to breast cancer. Loosely based on the story of cancer survivor Annie Parker and geneticist Mary-Claire King, the film focuses on the journey of these two women in discovering the BRCA1 gene mutation, which transforms understanding and treatment of certain types of breast cancer. It was the understanding of this gene mutation which led Angelina Jolie to release a heartfelt letter in the New York Times, which confessed her personal battle with the gene.
The film has already received positive reviews and awards, Samantha Morton won Best Actress at The Seattle International Film Festival and Bernstein also won The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Feature Film Award at The Hamptons International Film Festival. »
- Ciham Messouki
Decoding Annie Parker has debuted a new trailer.
The film is based on the true story of geneticist Mary Claire King (Hunt), who discovered a genetic link to breast cancer.
Morton plays cancer survivor Parker, who becomes involved in the attempt to better understand the disease.
The movie is cinematographer Bernstein's feature directorial debut.
Decoding Annie Parker will arrive in Us cinemas on May 2. A UK release date is yet to be confirmed. »
Entertainment One Films Us has released, via Yahoo! Movies , the trailer for director Steven Bernstein's Decoding Annie Parker , the upcoming drama starring Samantha Morton, Helen Hunt and Aaron Paul. Check it out in the player below! The May 2 release also stars Bradley Whitford, Rashida Jones, Richard Schiff, Alice Eve, Maggie Grace, Marley Shelton, Chris Mulkey and Corey Stoll. The film is cinematographer Steven Bernstein.s feature directorial debut from a script he wrote with Adam Bernstein and Michael Moss. Loosely based on the life of cancer survivor Annie Parker and the groundbreaking career of geneticist Mary-Claire King, the film tells the dramatic story of two women whose force of spirit defies the odds. Armed with a wicked sense of humor, Parker (Morton) faces »
With the movie hotting cinemas in 2016, the cast is still coming together for Superman vs. Batman, and Warner Bros. have announced a trio of new cast members, with Holly Hunter, Callan Mulvey (300: Rise of an Empire, Captain America: The Winter Soldier), and Tao Okamoto (The Wolverine) signing on for the long awaited meeting of The Dark Knight and The Man of Steel. But don't start speculating on which DC Comics characters they could be playing, as they have been revealed to be playing roles created specially for the movie. Now, I don't see Warner Bros. creating new super heroes for the movie, especially considering they have an entire back catalogue of comics characters they are doing nothing with, so I wouldn't be surprised if they have ties to the army, The Daily Planet, Lex Corp, or, heck, even Wayne Enterprises. I can't shake the feeling Hunter will take over »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Tom White)
The West Wing “Pilot”
Written by Aaron Sorkin
Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Originally aired September 22nd 1999 on NBC
It’s hard to argue that The West Wing isn’t Aaron Sorkin’s most successful television show. It ran for eight seasons (five more than his second longest series), outlasting even Sorkin himself (who left after the fourth season), on network TV at a time when the bar for ratings success was much higher than it is now. It racked up 26 Emmy wins in that time, including four consecutive Outstanding Drama Series awards from 2000-2003. And it arguably represents the last great drama of the pre-Sopranos era (even though it ran concurrently with The Sopranos for most of its run). Most importantly, in terms of its success, its setting proved the perfect vehicle for Sorkin’s writing. He consistently fills his shows with smart people, extremely dedicated to their jobs, who »
- Austin Gorton
I managed to screen 14 movies in four days at the South By Southwest film festival this year. Two were fantastic. Most were great. Some were below average. And only one of the bunch was downright unwatchable. Somehow, the worst film I screened managed to win the top Audience Award, which was announced Saturday afternoon in Austin. That would be Shawn Christensen.s Before I Disappear, an insufferable redemption drama written by, directed by and starring Christensen. A triple threat in every sense of the word, Christensen plays a suicidal loser roped into helping his alienated sister (Emmy Rossum) as she deals with her own legal problems. The feature length film is an expansion of Christensen.s Oscar-winning short, Curfew. I have no idea what people see in this concept. Richard Schiff, Fatima Ptacek and the usually great Ron Perlman . who also snoozed through the similarly disappointing 13 Sins at SXSW . co-star. »
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