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‘A Brief History of Hollywood Whitewashing’ Video Traces Controversy Before ‘Ghost in the Shell’ — Watch

1 hour ago

Scarlett Johansson’s role as The Major in “Ghost in the Shell” has faced nonstop controversy, as some fans have accused the film of whitewashing by casting a white actress to portray a previously Japanese character. A new Fandor video by Lj Frezza briefly explores the history of whitewashing prior to this film through some particularly egregious examples, including “Aloha,” “Speed Racer,” “Godzilla: King of the Monsters,” “Edge of Tomorrow,” “Doctor Strange,” “The Last Airbender,” and “Dragonball Evolution.” The video essay also compares and contrasts the different types of whitewashing exhibited through the variety of titles.

Read More: ‘Ghost in the Shell’: Original Anime Director Mamoru Oshii Defends Scarlett Johansson’s Casting

Ghost in the Shell” director Rupert Sanders has defended the role and dismissed the Johansson casting controversy.

“I think whenever you cast someone, someone’s going to be critical about it,” he said. “To me it was, »


- William Earl

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‘Wilson’ Flops for Fox Searchlight as ‘T2 Trainspotting’ Holds Strong

1 hour ago

This weekend, strong holdover “T2 Trainspotting” (Sony) outperformed Fox Searchlight” disappointment “Wilson” at the specialty box office. Jazz documentary “I Called Him Morgan” (Submarine Deluxe) is the bright spot among new specialty entries — at just one theater.

What a difference a year makes. During last year’s Oscar fall-off period, multiple major films opened well and a few expanded strongly, including “Eye in the Sky” and “Hello, My Name Is Doris.” This year so many well-reviewed wide releases are enjoying huge success with smart adults that a strong critical response is a necessity to compete for moviegoers.

Opening

Wilson (Fox Searchlight)  Metacritic: 50; Festivals include: Sundance 2017

$330,000 in 310 theaters; PTA (per theater average): $1,065

Wilson” did not make a splash at Sundance. Even a capable specialized distributor like Fox Searchlight can’t transform a film with mediocre reviews into a success. Despite its pedigree — Craig Johnson’s follow-up to “The Skeleton Twins »


- Tom Brueggemann

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‘Power Rangers’ Cast Members Want a Female Green Ranger for Sequel

2 hours ago

Power Rangers” had a respectable $40 million opening weekend, according to Deadline, and fans are already clamoring for a sequel. Luckily, the cast already has a bold new idea for a twist on the original story in case of a second installment.

Read More: ‘Power Rangers’ Makes Blockbuster History With First Gay Superhero

During a post-credits scene, the character Tommy Oliver is teased but never seen. In “Power Rangers” lore, Tommy is the Green Ranger, who starts as an enemy of the team, but later becomes an ally.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Dacre Montgomery, who plays Red Ranger Jason Scott, said there has been discussion amongst the cast of a Green Ranger gender swap.

“A lot of the cast and I have discussed that we think it should be a girl,” he said. “It makes it even: three girls, three boys. It’s left blank. It’s a cliff-hanger. »


- William Earl

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Studio Ghibli Easter Eggs: Video Shows Unique Connections Between Hayao Miyazaki Films — Watch

4 hours ago

Studio Ghibli films are known for their lush animation and attention to detail, and a new video from Ghibli Museum points out unique connections and easter eggs found in the work of co-founder Hayao Miyazaki. Similar to American animation studios such as Disney and Pixar, Ghibli animators find room to put fun flourishes in their work.

Read More: Hayao Miyazaki Calls Artificial Intelligence Animation ‘An Insult To Life Itself’

Including moments from “Kiki’s Delivery Service,” “Porco Rosso,” “Whisper of the Heart,” “Spirited Away,” “Howl’s Moving Castle,” “From Up on Poppy Hill,” and ” My Neighbor Totoro,” this video showcases parallel scenes, hidden characters and other gems for diehard fans.

Miyazaki is currently working to complete his next project, “Boro the Caterpillar,” which started as a short until he left retirement to expand it into a feature. Miyazaki has been developing this tale for 20 years, and described the project as “a story of a tiny, »


- William Earl

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‘Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich:’ This ‘New Take’ on the Horror Series Will Star Thomas Lennon and Udo Kier

5 hours ago

The twelfth (!) installment of the “Puppet Master” series, “Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich,” is set to start filming in Dallas next week, and an interesting cast has been revealed. The franchise, which has never previously featured notable acting talent, is bringing an interesting roster to the production: Thomas Lennon, Udo Kier, Jenny Pellicer, Nelson Franklin, Charlyne Yi, Alex Beh, Barbara Crampton, Tina Parker, Skeeta Jenkins, and Michael Pare are all set to tango with the devious dolls, Variety reports.

Read More: ‘Puppet Master’ Reboot: Straight-to-Video Horror Franchise to Return from the Dead With ‘The Littlest Reich’

This chapter will also be a “new take” on the horror series, which could definitely benefit from a fresh coat of paint. Sonny Laguna and Tommy Wiklund are set to direct the script, which was penned by “Bone Tomahawk” screenwriter S. Craig Zahler. “Reich” is set to amp up both the gore and comedy, »


- William Earl

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‘Queen of the Desert’ Trailer: Werner Herzog’s Biopic Starring Nicole Kidman is Finally Set for American Release

5 hours ago

Queen of the Desert,” Werner Herzog’s epic biographical film on the life of British journalist and adventurer Gertrude Bell, is finally set to hit American theaters and VOD on April 14, and a new trailer has dropped to promote the release. The starry feature, with a lead performance by Nicole Kidman and supporting turns from Robert Pattinson, James Franco, and Damian Lewis, first premiered at the 2015 Berlin International Film Festival to decidedly negative reviews.

Read More: Berlin: Werner Herzog on Why He Made ‘Queen of the Desert’ and Working With Nicole Kidman

Herzog spoke with IndieWire in 2015 about finding the right cast to tell Bell’s story.

“I think I’m good at casting and that’s a very decisive part of what I do,” he said. “And Nicole Kidman is the ideal. She gives a performance that is unprecedented. I have not seen anything like this at least in »


- William Earl

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‘Westworld’: Thandie Newton Rules PaleyFest Panel as Showrunners Confirm One Major Theory

12 hours ago

“Just fucking stonewall them. Nothing!”

These were the words of encouragement that “Westworld” executive producer Jonathan Nolan issued to co-showrunner Lisa Joy on stage Saturday night at the show’s PaleyFest panel, as the duo fought off a wide array of questions about Season 2. While he maintained the Nolan family mandate of secrecy at all costs, Joy was tempted time and time again to reveal show secrets — but to no avail.

“We’re writing right now, and we’re terribly excited about what we’re writing,” Nolan said, noting they would have all the episodes written before shooting begins. “Reddit has already figured it out. So, the third episode twist, we’re changing that.”

During the panel (which also featured executive producer Roberto Patino, and cast members Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, Ed Harris, Thandie Newton, and Jimmi Simpson), the creators and cast were peppered with questions about suspicions connected to Season 1 — Dr. »


- Ben Travers

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‘Beauty and the Beast’ Claymation Origins Story: Watch the Disney-Approved Short Created by a 12-Year-Old

23 hours ago

Disney’s ‘Beauty and the Beast’ has already taken in more than $500 million at the box office, but a much smaller project related to the French fairytale is also finding viewers all over the world. “LeFouston,” a two-minute claymation video conceived by a 12-year-old boy recently surfaced at THR and has already received more than 150,000 views.

Read More: How ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Is Like Hybrid Disney Remakes ‘The Jungle Book’ and ‘The Lion King

The video is inspired by “Beauty and the Beast” and presents an origin story of how Gaston and LeFou met. It even has an original song. Disney worked with the 12-year-old Robert Nelson as part of a campaign with Tongal and Young Storytellers that gave kids the chance to develop their own shorts inspired by the new film. Nelson’s mentors on the project included director and animator Kevin Ulrich, with music and voices by Trevor Gomes. »


- Graham Winfrey

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Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher Memorial Service — Watch Live

23 hours ago

It’s a sad day for fans of Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, as the mother-daughter duo are remembered today with a public memorial service at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in the Hollywood Hills. The ceremony will be held in a 1,200 seat theater at the cemetery and will feature James Blunt and John Williams’ music.

Read More: Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia Remembered as a Symbol of Resistance at Women’s Marches

“We will be celebrating their lives with friends, family members, and the people who loved them, you,” Fisher’s brother Todd Fisher announced in a January statement. “The service will begin at 1:00 Pm and immediately afterwards, those who want to walk to their final resting place are welcome to do so. There are a limited number of seats available, and it will be on a first come first come, first seated basis. There will be room for »


- Graham Winfrey

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‘Twin Peaks’ Mysterious Cherry Pie Billboards Appear Across the Country

25 March 2017 11:22 AM, PDT

With just under two months to go until the May 21 return of “Twin Peaks,” mysterious billboards have popped up around the country with nothing but cherry pie on them. Some billboards have a single slice of pie, while others show a full pie, but missing one slice.

Read More: ‘Twin Peaks’: How David Lynch Kept Details of the Year’s Biggest Revival a Secret Even From His Own Cast

The billboards have been spotted in Seattle – where the show’s original pilot, movie and new series were filmed – with additional billboard sightings in Missoula, Mont. (birthplace of David Lynch), and Philadelphia, where Lynch attended the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

What is the hidden meaning of the billboards? Fans will have to wait until the series airs to find out.

“There are probably a couple more out there, so keep your eyes peeled.. and on the road!” a blog post reads on WelcomeToTwinPeaks. »


- Graham Winfrey

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Liam Neeson, Anna Kendrick and More Audition to Be Stephen Hawking’s New Voice in Hilarious Red Nose Day Sketch

25 March 2017 10:03 AM, PDT

Liam Neeson and Anna Kendrick recently auditioned for the voice role of a lifetime: Stephen Hawking. The pair are just two celebrities from a larger group that took part in a hilarious Comic Relief video in which they lobby the world renowned scientist who suffers from Als to pick them as the person to replace the computerized voice he’s used for more than 30 years.

Read More: ‘Love Actually’ Sequel: First Trailer for Short Film Asks Which Cast Members Have Aged the Best

“Stephen, it’s me. Surely it has to be me,” Neeson says in the video. “Listen to my voice. It’s deep, it’s sexy, it’s got a tinge of … physics?”

In Kendrick’s audition tape, the actress calls herself “the obvious choice,” ading, “I’m intelligent, kind of, and, I’m young and cool, kind of.”

The project is part of Red Nose Day, a »


- Graham Winfrey

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‘Attack on Titan’ Season 2 New Trailer: Humankind Faces Off Against Flesh-Eating Beasts

25 March 2017 8:47 AM, PDT

Death Note’ First Trailer: Adam Wingard Reimagines the Manga Series in Netflix Original Film

Funimation has released another trailer for Season 2 of the manga series, ‘Attack on Titan,’ in which giant beasts attack the city of Shinganshina and threaten to wipe out humankind. Here’s the official description of the series from IMDb.

After his hometown is destroyed and his mother is killed, young Eren Jaegar vows to cleanse the earth of the giant humanoid Titans that have brought humanity to the brink of extinction.

Protecting what’s left of humanity are three walls — Wall Maria, Wall Rose and Wall Sheena — and after breaking through the first wall in season one, it appears that the second wall will also be breached in season two.

Seen in the clip are Eren, Mikasa and Armin fighting back and taking on the beasts, while a handful on new titans attack various Survey Corps. »


- Graham Winfrey

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‘Justice League’ Trailer: Zack Snyder Gets Another Chance to Save the Dceu, And It Looks Crazy Epic

25 March 2017 8:15 AM, PDT

The gang is all here! The new trailer for “Justice League” has arrived, and it features some pretty badass new footage of Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and The Flash teaming up to stop the latest CGI threat bent on destroying the world.

Read More: ‘Justice League’ Behind the Scenes Video: Zack Snyder Celebrates Wrap With 90-Second Clip

Justice League” follows the events of “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” with Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) and Diana Prince (“Gal Gadot”) rallying up a crew of metahumans to fight Steppenwolf (Ciarán Hinds) in the wake of Superman’s death. Of course Superman won’t be gone for too long, but just how he returns and factors into the plot remains to be seen.

While fans are no doubt curious about how the Dceu will progress in the first big meet-up of its many heroes, the industry is watching “Justice League” even »


- Zack Sharf

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‘Phillauri’ Review: Anushka Sharma Produces a Bollywood Ghost Story That Falls Short of Its Potential

25 March 2017 7:38 AM, PDT

Anushka Sharma has, over her nine years in Bollywood, proven herself with powerful roles reflecting both exceptional talent and maturity that have heightened our expectations from her as an actress. The chilling thriller “NH10,” the 2015 maiden feature from her production house Clean Slate Films — one of the few in Bollywood companies helmed by a female actor — more than lived up to the company’s mission to tell risky, non-clichéd stories. Setting all that aside, while Clean Slate’s second release, “Phillauri,” has a promising premise, it’s disappointing to see first-time director Anshai Lal’s primarily play-it-safe treatment and lethargic pacing make it an underwhelming watch.

The story opens with Kanan (Suraj Sharma, of “Life of Pi” fame), who, after a three-year stint making music in Canada, has reluctantly returned home to Amritsar, Punjab to wed his high school sweetheart, Anu (Mehreen Pirzada). His trepidation towards the marriage is only »


- Anisha Jhaveri

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Robert Rodriguez Will Direct ‘Escape From New York’

25 March 2017 7:35 AM, PDT

Robert Rodriguez will direct “Escape From New York,” 20th Century Fox’s remake of John Carpenter’s 1981 film, Deadline reports. Fox won a bidding war for rights to the project in 2015. Studiocanal owned the rights to the original, which was released by Avco Embassy.

Read More: Watch: Robert Rodriguez’ 1991 Short ‘Bedhead’ Displays Director’s Early Genius

Andrew Rona and Alex Heineman’s The Picture Company will produce. “Luther” writer Neil Cross is writing the script. Carpenter will executive produce the project. Fox aims to breathe new life into the property, with the intention of launching a franchise.

Rodriguez just finished working with Fox on “Alita: Battle Angel,” an action-adventure film based on Yukito Kishiro’s manga graphic novels. The script for the film was written by James Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis. Set in the 26th century, the story follows a female cyborg who’s rescued from the scrap heap by a scientist. »


- Graham Winfrey

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‘Into the Badlands’: The Hong Kong Secret That Makes the Show’s Amazing Martial Arts Possible

25 March 2017 7:00 AM, PDT

The “Into the Badlands” set is a fascinating aural environment when the show’s epic fights are being filmed.

That’s thanks to the blend of accents amongst the crew — American, English, Irish — as well as the Cantonese instructions being barked out as The Widow (Emily Beecham), Tilda (Ally Ioannides), and their many stunt doubles spin about and spar with each other, filming action so in-your-face that before certain shots, cameramen have to put on lacrosse helmets.

Read More: ‘Into the Badlands’ Review: Season 2 Will Cure Your ‘Iron Fist’-Induced Martial Arts Blues

It’s a blend of sounds that echoes the show’s own eclectic nature. “Badlands” has stood out since its premiere in November 2015 as a show that blends genres and boasts one of the most bonkers narratives on television. Set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland where fighting ability might be the only thing that keeps you from a »


- Liz Shannon Miller

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Joseph Gordon-Levitt Nears Deal to Direct, Star in Channing Tatum Musical

25 March 2017 6:48 AM, PDT

Joseph Gordon-Levitt is in talks to direct and star in a musical comedy for Universal, Variety reports. Gordon-Levitt and Channing Tatum are already attached to star in the R-rated film, currently titled “Wingmen.”

Read More: Tiff 2016: ‘Snowden’ Star Joseph Gordon-Levitt Supports Edward Snowden’s ‘Patriotism’

Gordon-Levitt and “21 Jump Street” writer Michael Bacall reportedly pitched the idea in 2016, starting a heated bidding war among several studios.

The story centers on two pilots who crash-land in Las Vegas. Sources told Variety the movie will be in the vein of “Pitch Perfect” and “The Book of Mormon.” Other filmmakers who were considered to direct the project included James Bobin, Seth Gordon and “The Book of Mormon” director Casey Nicholaw.

Marc Platt ProductionsMarc Platt and Adam Siegel will produce alongside Tatum’s Free Association and Gordon-Levitt’s HitRecord Films. Universal senior VP of production Kristin Lowe will oversee the project for the studio. »


- Graham Winfrey

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‘Bob’s Burgers’: The Most Optimistic Show on TV? Cast and Creator Champion Positivity at PaleyFest

25 March 2017 1:22 AM, PDT

Fans feed off television for different reasons. You might watch “The Americans” for the thrills or “Veep” to learn a few new insults, but the cast and creator of “Bob’s Burgers” made a compelling case for finding compassion through TV while speaking at PaleyFest Friday night.

“We’re in a moment when you have to make a choice to be optimistic,” creator Loren Bouchard said. “We made that choice with this show. The family itself is optimistic.”

“It’s not a part of the show that we set out explicitly to include,” he said. “But, in this day and age, I find myself thinking it’s an essential element of the show.”

“It’s one of the best parts of ‘Bob’s Burgers,’ that they’re in tough straits.” star H. Jon Benjamin added. “I think that’s the heart of the show: They’re a struggling family that »


- Ben Travers

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Writers’ Guild Negotiations Stall, as Leaders Call for Strike Authorization Vote

24 March 2017 8:05 PM, PDT

The Writers Guild of America is inching a step closer toward a potential writers’ strike.

The WGA’s negotiating committee sent a letter to members on Friday, recommending that the guild’s 12,000 members take a vote on strike authorization. It did not give a timetable for such a vote, however, and such a vote would not automatically lead to a strike.

Negotiations between the WGA and the Alliance of Motion Pictures & Television Producers started March 13, but without any movement, the guild is looking to take the next step.

Read More: Another Writers’ Strike May Be Looming — Report

On the last day of these two weeks, the companies’ proposal has barely a single hard-dollar gain for writers,” the letter said. “$51 billion in profits and barely a penny for those of us who make the product that makes the companies rich. But that’s not all. In response to our proposal to »


- Michael Schneider

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Jason Segel Shares Childhood Superhero Dream in Austin Film Festival’s ‘On Story’ — Watch

24 March 2017 2:58 PM, PDT

The Austin Film Festival’s original series “On Story” is known for giving viewers an inside look at the creative process of film and TV, featuring intimate conversations with stars and behind-the-scenes talent. Season seven will have 20 all-new episodes featuring visitors to Aff like Jason Segel, who last year explained his childhood obsession with being a superhero.

Read More: ‘The Discovery’ Trailer: The Secrets of Charlie McDowell’s New Mind-Bender Begin to Unfold

“What we’ve always wanted to do with ‘On Story’ is give a peek behind the magic of filmmaking,” series co-producer and filmmaker Miguel Alvarez said in a statement. “Every week we’re bringing the writers, directors, and actors from our favorite films and television shows to our viewers and we think that’s something special.” The series won a Lone Star Emmy Award for Best Arts/Entertainment Program in 2014.

Aff’s “On Story” will air on »


- Graham Winfrey

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