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A Goodbye to Craig Ferguson After a Decade as "The Late Late Show" Host

2 hours ago

Television late night has been the subject of a lot of talk over the past five years. There was the battle between Jay Leno and Conan O'Brien over who will host "The Tonight Show". There was the surge in popularity of Jimmy Fallon once he took over the position, creating viral video after viral video. There was the time change of "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" to compete with the primary late night shows. There was the announcement of the retirement of David Letterman, and the announcement of Stephen Colbert taking over the position. One talk show host, however, decided to keep a low profile and develop what has been the most entertaining (and strangest) late night talk show over the past ten years. Craig Ferguson is that man, who has helmed CBS's "The Late Late Show" since January 3, 2005 and will host his final episode tonight (December 19th) at the ripe time of 12:35 A. »

- Mike Shutt

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'Into the Woods' (2014) Movie Review

3 hours ago

I was both "excited and scared." These words, as sung by Little Red Riding Hood in the classic, Stephen Sondheim musical, echoed my sentiments as I walked into Disney's film adaptation of Into the Woods, a play I hold in very high regard and one of the seminal musicals that developed my love for the form. My cause for concern stemmed from director Rob Marshall (Chicago, Nine), whom, to this point, I don't believe has made a particularly good movie. Sitting down in the theater, my heart was pounding. Then, the fifteen-minute-long opening prologue started, and I began to settle. The show was in good hands, and the result is a successful entry into movie musical canon, even despite some issues. The film opens with a focus, primarily, on three separate fairy tales, two familiar to us all and one a new creation. First is Cinderella (Anna Kendrick) attending the king's festival, »

- Mike Shutt

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New Pictures from 'Star Wars 7', 'Insurgent', 'Furious 7', 'Ted 2', 'Jurassic World' and More

6 hours ago

Photo: Walt Disney Pictures Entertainment Weekly has released several new images from upcoming 2015 releases including the likes of some artwork from Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens as seen directly above as well as pics from Ted 2, The Divergent Series: Insurgent, Furious 7, Jurassic World and many more. Full disclosure, just from looking at these pictures I wouldn't have been able to figure out what some of them are from, but lucky for you this isn't a "Guess the Movies" installment. Here's a look at several of the new pictures along with a little commentary of my own over the course of the next couple pages. I would have guessed this first picture below was for a Baby Mama sequel I didn't yet know existed -- in which case I'd have yelled, "Whoop whoop!" -- but alas, it's for a film called Sisters (previously known as The Nest »

- Jordan Benesh

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Watch: First Trailer for 'Get Hard' Starring Kevin Hart and Will Ferrell

6 hours ago

At this point it makes more sense to put Kevin Hart's name in front of Will Ferrell's... rightc I would say Hart is the hotter ticket at the moment as his movies continue to do gang busters, though I'm not entirely sure about that The Wedding Ringer movie... though, quality isn't always dependent on success, just see the $134.9 million Ride Along made earlier this year. Perhaps Get Hard will be a different story as Hart teams with Ferrell for a new comedy in which Ferrell plays a rich bank manager who is wrongfully convicted and sentenced to time in a maximum security prison. To prepare himself for his incarceration, Ferrell's character hires the man who washes his car (Hart) to toughen him up in his final 30 days of freedom. Craig T. Nelson, Alison Brie and Tip Harris co-star. The pic is set for a March 27, 2015 release, watch the first trailer below. »

- Brad Brevet

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No Surprise Here, Mark Wahlberg Will Return for 'Transformers 5'

7 hours ago

Transformers: Age of Ultron -- er, wait that ain't right. Let's start over. Transformers: Age of Extinction -- ah, that's better -- is still the highest grossing movie of 2014, raking in nearly $1.1 billion at the worldwide box office, so of course there is going to be a fifth film in the series. Although it seems franchise helmer Michael Bay is looking to pass off the series to a new director, we now know one person intends to be back for the followup, and it's none other than star Mark Wahlberg. "I committed to doing a couple more," Wahlberg told MTV, before going on to say, "I can't speak for Mr. Bay but, you know, something tells me we'll be on the set soon." No word exactly on what he means by "soon", but Ehren Kruger is back writing the script, so I guess "soon" is basically however long it »

- Jordan Benesh

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2015 Oscars: Nine Foreign Language Films Advance

7 hours ago

The Academy has announced the nine films that will advance for consideration for the Best Foreign Language category at the 2015 Oscars and among them is what I believe to be the #1 favorite, Pawel Pawlikowski's Ida out of Poland. I'm happy to see Damian Szifron's hilarious Wild Tales also among the contenders and sad to see Xavier Dolan's Mommy didn't make the cut. Of the lot, and outside of the films I've already mentioned, I've only also seen Force Majeure and Leviathan. Some may be surprised the Dardennes' Two Days, One Night out of Belgium missing the cut considering it's been nominated several times elsewhere, not only for Foreign Language, but also star Marion Cotillard. Zaza Urushadze's Tangerines out of Estonia was also nominated for a Golden Globe Award in the same category while Abderrahmane Sissako's Timbuktu was a hit at Cannes taking the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury and Fran? »

- Brad Brevet

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Podcast: Reviewing 'The Hobbit' and 'The Gambler' & Sony Cancels Release of 'The Interview'

8 hours ago

Hey there Lizard People, only one more episode of the podcast for 2014 is left after today's as we review The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies and The Gambler, discuss our Critics Choice Award nominations, explore the Oscar field, discuss Sony's decision to cancel the release of The Interview, play a couple of voice mails and much, much more. Hope you enjoy! Only a few more episodes until our final episode of the year, thanks to all of your support this year, hopefully it was worth it! If you are on Twitter, we have a Twitter account dedicated to the podcast at @bnlpod. Give us a follow won'tchac I want to remind you that you can call in and leave us your comments, thoughts, questions, etc. directly on our Google Voice account, which you can call and leave a message for us at (925) 526-5763, which may be even easier to remember at (925) 5-bnl-pod. »

- Brad Brevet

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Details on Fincher's Multiple HBO Series, DuVernay Taking the Leap To Television

9 hours ago

In September we learned David Fincher would helm the entire first season of HBO's upcoming series "Utopia", and in addition to that we have previously been made aware of two other untitled television projects from the Gone Girl director: the first a 1950s-set crime-noir series Fincher was developing with writer James Ellroy (L.A. Confidential), and the second a series about "music videos in the 1980s and the crew members who worked on them." Yesterday both untitled projects were officially titled, and we learned a few other small details about each. The Fincher-Ellroy noir series is called "Shakedown", and it centers on a private detective working in the murky underbelly of Los Angeles in the 1950s. The project was previously in development at FX in 2012, and is inspired by the career of real-life private eye Fred Otash, about whom Ellroy also based his fictional novella "Shakedown", though the HBO »

- Jordan Benesh

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Watch: New Trailer for Alan Rickman's 'A Little Chaos', Starring Kate Winslet

18 December 2014 1:50 PM, PST

I honestly do now know what to make of this new trailer for A Little Chaos, which premiered at this year's Toronto International Film Festival. This is Alan Rickman's first film as a director in seventeen years, and it looks like a tonal mess. I could not tell when they were trying to be funny or serious. When that is the question in your head, something is not coming through. The film does sport a very impressive cast, including its director, Kate Winslet, Matthias Schoenaerts, Jennifer Ehle, and Stanley Tucci is a comical wig. If that cast was placed in any film, I would buy a ticket to see it. That is just too much talent to ignore. But this is what they come together onc I may end up being totally wrong, and the film, which is set to be released March 27, 2015, may turn out terrific. But this »

- Mike Shutt

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'A Most Violent Year' (2014) Movie Review

18 December 2014 11:29 AM, PST

A Most Violent Year explores the question of how dirty you'll allow your hands to get in your effort to achieve the success you desire with a clear conscience. Center stage, soiling his hands and yet not entirely ready to admit it, is Abel Morales (Oscar Isaac), a small-time heating oil distributor facing issues with his competitors, the district attorney (David Oyelowo) and the banks. A little more comfortable with dealing with reality is Abel's wife, Anna (Jessica Chastain), the two having worked side-by-side for years, taking over the business from her father and finally looking to turn the small family business into something much bigger as the film opens with Abel making a deal to purchase an oil holding facility along the water. Abel's mounting troubles, however, are likely to make finalizing that deal a little harder. Where the film's ominous title comes into play is in its setting. »

- Brad Brevet

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Get Your Snipe On with a New Trailer, Clip, and Poster for 'American Sniper'

18 December 2014 10:25 AM, PST

Clint Eastwood is in need of something good. Desperately. I want it to be American Sniper, but talk about it so far, including Brad's review, has been mediocre at best and terrible at worst. I will still see the movie, starring Bradley Cooper as "The Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. History" (so the poster poses), but I am not getting my hopes up. For those eagerly awaiting this film, or people who just like movie marketing, below you will find a new trailer, a new clip, and a new poster for the film. So much promotion! #AmericanSniper, amiritec I hope when I see this I am pleasantly surprised by what I see. I cannot think of a film of Eastwood's I have liked since 2008's Changeling, and even that had a lot of issues. Is this the age thing Quentin Tarantino is talking about and why he will retire »

- Mike Shutt

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Watch: Oscar Producers Roundtable on Tough Decisions, Film Franchises and Budget Concerns

18 December 2014 9:58 AM, PST

I have another Oscar contender roundtable for you lovely people out there. This one concerns the producers of some of the most talked about films this year. Unfortunately, this roundtable is moderated by Stephen Galloway, so you will have to deal with that. But the things they talk about are still interesting. This roundtable includes Peter Chernin (St. Vincent, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes), Cathleen Sutherland (Boyhood), Marc Platt (Into the Woods), Emma Thomas (Interstellar), John Lesher (Birdman, Fury), and Eric Fellner (The Theory of Everything). It would have been interesting for this conversation to be filmed after the hack at Sony. It obviously would have come up, especially due to the e-mails from Scott Rudin and Amy Pascal. Alas, you can tell this has been in the can for quite a bit, so we will not get to enjoy that bit of talking. I thought Emma Thomas, »

- Mike Shutt

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First Picture of Jessica Chastain in Guillermo del Toro's 'Crimson Peak'

18 December 2014 9:28 AM, PST

The picture below featuring Jessica Chastain in Guillemo del Toro's upcoming gothic horror Crimson Peak comes from the pages of "Entertainment Weekly". As for an idea of what we're looking at, the official synopsis sets the mood: In the aftermath of a family tragedy, an aspiring author is torn between love for her childhood friend and the temptation of a mysterious outsider. Trying to escape the ghosts of her past, she is swept away to a house that breathes, bleeds... and remembers. Starring alongside Chastain are Charlie Hunnam (Pacific Rim, "Sons of Anarchy"), Mia Wasikowska and Tom Hiddleston with the film set to hit theaters October 16, 2015. »

- Brad Brevet

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Audra McDonald to Reprise Tony-Winning Performance in 'Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill' for HBO

18 December 2014 9:17 AM, PST

I had the great pleasure to see six-time Tony winner (six, people, six!) Audra McDonald play the legend that is Billie Holliday in Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill back in June. I do not like hyperbole, sensationalism, or anything like that, but there is a strong possibility she delivered the most impressive performance I have ever seen. From the moment she walked on stage to when the lights blacked out at the end, I never once saw Audra McDonald. I saw Billie Holliday in front of me. It was jarring when the curtain call was happening because Audra showed up for the first time. Because the stage brings in a limited audience, HBO has decided to showcase Lady Day with Audra McDonald reprising the role that earned her the sixth Tony. Lonny Price, who directed the stage version, will return to direct this version. The film will shoot »

- Mike Shutt

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Box Office Predictions: 'The Hobbit: Battle of The Five Armies' Will Battle to the Top

18 December 2014 7:00 AM, PST

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies will open weaker than the first two in the franchise. My reasoning is based on the trend-line from Unexpected Journey to Smaug, I really think this fandom is down to the diehards. There will be plenty of drive-by traffic, but this is no longer an "event" movie. The flaw in this logic is that Five Armies had a bigger Wednesday than the second film, $11.2 million vs $8.8 million - but couldn't that also be the last of the "real" fansc Probably wise to go well over my prediction of $54.3 million, but how much higher can you stomach with this lemonc Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb is headed the other way, getting stronger with each Ben Stiller commercial. $39 million is nothing to scoff at, and this will bring in more family dollars in a big way. I can't go higher than $13k per theater though, »

- Laremy Legel

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New 'The Last Five Years' Poster is a Mosaic of a Relationship

17 December 2014 2:34 PM, PST

I am very curious as to how the marketing for The Last 5 Years is working for people. As someone who loves the show and this film adaptation (read my review here), I think they are doing a good job of selling the stuff that will get people to buy tickets, even if it is a bit of a misrepresentation of the what the film is. The latest piece of marketing is a new poster, which you can see below. I do like the mosaic approach to the poster. It illustrates the fragmented nature of the story, although whether people know that or not when they see it is something I am unaware of. I know it is difficult to illustrate the two different timelines on a poster, but I think this is a worthy substitute. I do find it a little weird that they choose only smily, happy moments in the relationship to show, »

- Mike Shutt

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So What's Nextc What else Can the Hackers Ask for before We Stop Giving Inc

17 December 2014 1:53 PM, PST

So the hacker group known as the "Guardians of Peace" (Gop) threatened a 9/11-like attack on movie theaters that showed the Seth Rogen and James Franco comedy The Interview, which was to open on Christmas day, but has just been canceled altogether after the five major theater chains decided not to show it. Add to that, Fox decided not to move forward on a North Korean-set thriller from director Gore Verbinski with Steve Carell expect to star... and the Gop didn't even have to ask for that to happen... What's nextc Will Paramount retroactively go back and wipe Team America: World Police from our collective consciencec This sets a horrible precedent and as much as I can understand the thinking behind it, I can't say it seems like a good idea unless Hollywood knows something we don't. With the decision that's been made it seems the Gop can now ask for anything. »

- Brad Brevet

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Fox Now Cancels Gore Verbinski & Steve Carell North Korean Set Thriller

17 December 2014 1:16 PM, PST

We are living in a state of fear as we've learned today Sony has pulled plans to release the Seth Rogen and James Franco comedy The Interview as a result of threats from the hacker group "Guardians of Peace" and now Fox has decided to not even let things get that far. Deadline reports Fox and New Regency have scrapped an untitled North Korean-set thriller that was being developed by director Gore Verbinski with Steve Carell to star. The pic was set up in October with plans to begin shooting March 2015. The studio has decided to drop the pic altogether rather than change the setting. Personally, I don't know what to make of all this. To simply give in is to simply give up, but can I really blame these companies for making a decision based on what are actually some serious threatsc Is Hollywood being overly paranoidc Clearly we're »

- Brad Brevet

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Watch: 'Into the Woods' Mti Conversation Piece with Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine

17 December 2014 1:05 PM, PST

Music Theatre International (Mti) is typically the place one goes in order to license a particular show to perform regionally, communally, etc. Among the shows they handle is Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Into the Woods, which is gearing up for its release next week (and I will be seeing tomorrow). In preparing for my viewing, I have, of course, been doing a little refresher of the original show, such as watching the new Blu-ray of the original production starring Bernadette Peters, Joanna Gleason, and Chip Zien over and over and over again. I also have been re-reading Sondheim's notes on the show's lyrics in his book Look, I Made a Hat, which is volume two of his collected, annotated lyrics. Another thing I have watched in my preparation is this terrific video produced by Mti back when the show was first getting licensed. The video consists of Stephen Sondheim »

- Mike Shutt

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Update: Sony Cancels the Release of 'The Interview'

17 December 2014 12:41 PM, PST

Update: Following word the five major theater chains had decided not to release The Interview, Sony has officially decided not to release the film, issuing the following statement: "In light of the decision by the majority of our exhibitors not to show the film The Interview, we have decided not to move forward with the planned December 25 theatrical release. We respect and understand our partners' decision and, of course, completely share their paramount interest in the safety of employees and theater-goers. Sony Pictures has been the victim of an unprecedented criminal assault against our employees, our customers, and our business. Those who attacked us stole our intellectual property, private emails, and sensitive and proprietary material, and sought to destroy our spirit and our morale - all apparently to thwart the release of a movie they did not like. We are deeply saddened at this brazen effort to suppress the distribution of a movie, »

- Jordan Benesh

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