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Interview: Tom Petty is ready to rock with new album, 'Hypnotic Eye'

4 hours ago

Tom Petty received the Founders Award Wednesday night from performing rights organization Ascap for the contributions he’s made to songwriting, but when Petty talked with HitFix, he was much more interested in talking about his songs to come rather than the ones in his past, especially the tunes on his forthcoming album, “Hypnotic Eye,” tentatively scheduled for release this summer. I asked the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer what made him decide to make a rock record again, one that heralds back to his ‘70s work. “I just kind of go where the wind blows me musically,” he said. “I think it’s a very special record and it’s certainly rock and roll, it’s very electric. No ballads, it’s a rocker." He joked that he only brought  his longtime band, The Heartbreakers, into his Malibu studio two weeks ago. In reality, the album has been »


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Luc Besson on casting Scarlett Johansson as 'Lucy' and his philosophy of action

6 hours ago

My favorite moment during the Saturday afternoon panel I moderated for Universal's upcoming movie "Lucy" was when an audience member asked director Luc Besson if he'd be interested in directing a Marvel Studios movie about "Black Widow" starring Scarlett Johansson. "I am afraid of spiders," he answered, and then just looked at me, ready to move on to the next question. If you've seen the first trailer for the movie, you get the general idea. Besson says he started noodling with the idea a decade ago, the first time he heard someone mention that "we only use 10% of our brains" idea. "I know it is wrong," he said, "but I liked the idea and I just wanted to start there. What happens if we take a character from that 10% to 100%?" When Universal asked if I'd like to moderate the panel, it was an easy yes. After all, this isn't just »


- Drew McWeeny

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Recap: 'Survivor: Cagayan' - 'Sitting in my Spy Shack'

6 hours ago

Pre-credit sequence. Jefra is still trying to piece together what went down at the last Tribal. This could take a while. She asks Tony for his reasons. "You guys wouldn't understand where I'm coming from," Tony says. This works for Trish, who insists she isn't mad about being totally in the dark. "I still trust Tony and he still trusts me," Trish insists. Spencer knows that Tony is unpredictable and that he may not be useful for long. "The sooner we make a move against Tony, the better," Spencer says. Tony Hopkins? Tony correctly suspects that he'll be in trouble after the last vote. So, for the second time this season, he constructs a spy shack, this one next to the water well. In no time, Tony's shack pays dividends. Jefra and Trish go to get water and Jefra laments that their alliance may be gone and she doesn't know where she stands. »


- Daniel Fienberg

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14 ‘Daily Show’ correspondents who rock our world

7 hours ago

Thank god for Jon Stewart. Over his 16 years as host of Comedy Central's "The Daily Show," America's favorite pundit has helped launch the careers of a slew of talented comedians, from now-established A-list stars like Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert to promising up-and-comers like Kristen Schaal and Josh Gad. So which of these Lol-worthy men and women are our favorites of the bunch? Check out our 14 picks in the gallery below, then vote for your favorites in the poll further down. »


- Louis Virtel, Katie Hasty, Chris Eggertsen, Donna Dickens, Dave Lewis, Daniel Fienberg

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Review: 'The Americans' - 'Martial Eagle'

8 hours ago

A review of tonight's "The Americans" coming up just as soon as I wake up up to clean the fridge... "I'm not here to be saved." -Philip The driving question of "The Americans" season 1 was "How real is this marriage?" And at different points in the season, Philip and Elizabeth would have each given you very different answers. That tension hasn't entirely gone away in season 2 — witness the mess caused when Elizabeth hears about Clark and Martha's sex life — but for now they are treating each other as a genuine spouse, and instead the question they keep asking themselves is an even harder one: "What kind of a person am I becoming?" It's not that they are questioning the mission itself. Elizabeth never has, and when Philip has at times, it's been more about wanting to protect his family than about believing they are on the wrong side of things. »


- Alan Sepinwall

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Is Stephen Colbert secretly a Hydra sleeper agent?

9 hours ago

(Cbr) Much like Hydra, the subversive organization set on world domination, Stephen Colbert is a master deception, and of the long game. For the past eight and a half years, we’ve been fooled by the talk-show host, who’s so adept at the art of subterfuge that, in the wake of Steve Rogers’ “death” in 2007, he was bequeathed Captain America’s shield, which to this day is displayed — like a trophy! — on the set of "The Colbert Report". Heck, he was so bold, so self-assured, that he even made a run for the White House in the Marvel Universe (a bid that was unsuccessful, thankfully). But this week, Colbert finally revealed his true colors: As Marvel notes, one eagle-eyed fan spotted the phrase “Hail Hydra” was inserted into the opening of Monday’s show, making it all too clear where Colbert’s allegiances lie. Our eyes now are open »


- Kevin Melrose, Comic Book Resources

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'Edge of Tomorrow' director punches ticket for 'Railhead'

9 hours ago

(Cbr) After killing Tom Cruise then killing him again (and again) in "Edge of Tomorrow", director Doug Liman plans to stick around the sci-fi genre. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the filmmaker has been hired to adapt Philip Reeve’s upcoming children’s book "Railhead" for Warner Bros. and Di Novi Pictures. It takes place in a future world where travelers get around space via trains that pass through portals. The protagonist is a thief who’s hired to steal an object that turns out to be of a higher value and significance than he ever imagined, leading to a great adventure with galaxy-spanning consequences. There’s no word on when "Railhead" will enter production. The book hits shelves in fall 2015. »


- Josh Wigler, Comic Book Resources

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NBC: Sochi Olympics prove hipsters aren't the only ones addicted to their smartphones

9 hours ago

New York (AP) — Slightly more than half of the people who watched the Sochi Olympics on NBC also used a computer, tablet or smartphone to get information about the games while the TV was on, the network said Wednesday. NBC closely studies how Americans follow the action partly because the Olympics are a huge investment, but also to get a peek at how media habits are changing. This year's takeaway: the multiscreen experience is rapidly taking hold and is doing so across all age groups. "It's not 25-year-olds who wear black and live in Williamsburg," said Alan Wurtzel, NBC's chief researcher. "This is America." NBC and its cable networks televised 541 hours of Sochi action and made all Olympic competition available online. The flood of material only increased the appetite; NBC said 49 percent of viewers said they watched more Olympics action simply because it was more available, and that number shot »


- David Bauder (AP)

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10 Actors Who Kicked Thine Ass in Shakespearean Roles

11 hours ago

Look, it's Shakespeare's 450th birthday. We at Riot are generally concerned with internet memes and Zac Efron's musculature, but let's give credit where its due: These are real celebs kicking real ass in real Shakesperean roles and no one's worthy. And we can't contain ourselves.  So, here are 10 people kicking thine ass in Shakespearean roles and leaving you in the mortal, pathetic dust. 1. Meryl Streep Serving You Death Sass In "The Taming Of The Shrew'2 Judi Dench With Gunpowder Eyes And A Kevlar Heart In "Twelfth Night" 3. Ralph Fiennes Is A Hotheaded Traitor Bad-ass In "Coriolanus," So Just Deal With It. 4. Kate Winslet Has A Song For You Losers, And It's A Heartbreak And A Goddamn Treasure In "Hamlet" 5. Now Is The Winter Of You Melting At The Computer, Because Kevin Spacey Is A Hunchbacked Hellraiser In "Richard III" 6. This Is CNN? Close, Moron, It's James Earl Jones »


- Louis Virtel

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Oh, hello, 1997: AOL is going to start streaming Miramax movies for free

11 hours ago

New York (AP) — Web portal AOL Inc. says it will license full-length movies from Miramax for free viewing with advertisements by its U.S. visitors. AOL didn't say which movies it would offer but said they would be refreshed monthly and span a range of genres. They will play on its AOL On Network, the website operator's destination for online video. AOL says it is one of the top three video destinations in the U.S. with 1.31 billion views and 3.8 billion online ads in March. Miramax has a library of more than 700 films including "Pulp Fiction," ''Chicago," ''Good Will Hunting," and "The English Patient." Copyright © 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.   »


- AP Staff

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Recap: 'American Idol' Season 13 - Top 6 Performances - Country & Rock Night

11 hours ago

We're down to six on "American Idol" and the singers are doing double-duty on Wednesday (April 23) night. Alex, Jena, Caleb, Cj, Jessica and Sam will each sing one song dubbed "Country" and another song deemed "Rock."  Two quick thoughts: 1) Dexter Roberts picked the wrong week to go home. If ever a theme would have helped ease Dexter along in his "Idol" genre, this would have been it. 2) For all of the Judges' Save thing, this week's theme seems to doom Sam Woolf, doesn't it? I continue to suspect that Jena, Caleb and Alex are in their own voting class. And of the remaining three singers, who can pretty much go home in any order as far as I'm concerned, two of them can be comfortably classed in a country-rock niche and the other one is Sam Woolf. Either we're about to see some impressive theme cheating from Sam, or else he's doomed before he begins. »


- Daniel Fienberg

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Pharrell Williams' 'Happy' makes it a fine nine at the top

12 hours ago

“Happy” remains atop the Billboard Hot 100 for a ninth week, making Pharrell Williams one of only six solo male artists to spend a cumulative half year at No. 1, according to Billboard. It’s been quite a time for Williams, especially when you consider that one of his biggest hits as a featured artist, Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky,” did reach No. 1.  However, the following songs did: Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines,” featuring Pharrell and T.I. (12 weeks), Snoop Dogg’s “Drop It Like It’s Hot” (3 weeks) and Ludacris’ “Money Maker,” (2 weeks). Usher holds the record for solo males at 47 acts, while Mariah Carey leads all artists with 70 weeks total at No. 1. Back to this week, after three static weeks, there’s a little movement afoot now. John Legend’s “All of Me” stays at No. 2, but Jason Derulo’s “Talk Dirty,” featuring 2 Chainz moves 4-3, trading places with Katy Perry’s “Dark Horse, »


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Second episode of 'Ask Drew' digs into 'Terminator Genesis' rumors and more

12 hours ago

This week's "Ask Drew" covered some ground, which is exactly how we want to do it. You guys hit the video team with a ton of questions, and every single one got read by someone. I was worried that after the first episode, this was going to turn into some sort of oddball game of "Truth Or Dare" each time. I should have trusted the awesome video team here, though. They selected the questions, and I saw them for the first time as we began recording the episode. You gave us some great valuable feedback last time, and we've made some small adjustments to the format and the staging this time. No more sealed envelopes. We let things run a little longer. I love that you guys sent in "Movie God" options. It makes me so happy that you enjoy playing it, and then it makes me suffer when I »


- Drew McWeeny

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Lorde, The National and more to headline fall Boston Calling

12 hours ago

Boston Calling has announced the lineup for its fall festival, held at City Hall Plaza in Boston, Mass. from Sept. 5–7. Check out the festival’s promo video below. The fall lineup includes The National, Lorde, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Replacements, Nas with The Roots, Spoon, Childish Gambino, Girl Talk, The War on Drugs, The Hold Steady, Future Islands, Volcano Choir, Sky Ferreira, White Denim, and The 1975. The previously announced spring festival, which runs from May 23–25, features Jack Johnson, Death Cab For Cutie, Modest Mouse, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros and The Decemberists. The festival, which enters its second year, is co-curated by The National’s Aaron Dessner. Tickets go on sale Thursday, April 24. »


- Whitney Phaneuf

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5 Steps Avril Lavigne needs to take to get her career back on track

12 hours ago

Avril Lavigne has been all over the press the past two days for all the wrong reasons. Her tone-deaf video for new single, “Hello Kitty,” is already a leading contender for worst video of the year… so bad that YouTube yanked it (although it is still up on Lavigne’s website; you can watch it here while you chuck cupcakes and roll around in your underwear. The nearly unlistenable Edm track is meant for Hello Kitty aficionados only (Lavigne, herself, being one), and the video features Lavigne awkwardly lip-syncing through the song backed by robot-like, expressionless Asian women. Didn’t she learn from Gwen Stefani’s Harajuku Girls experience that even if you mean their inclusion as an homage (perhaps in this case, to Lavigne’s massive Asian following), it’s going to backfire? The truth is that Lavigne has been on a bit of a downward slope even before “Hello Kitty. »


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'Star Trek' and 'Spider-Man' in question as Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman split

13 hours ago

Here's the thing: whatever the next "Star Trek" film is, it needs to be special since it will be released (most likely) during the 50th anniversary of the original series first making its television premiere. I'm not a Trekkie who believes that the series has to be done one particular way or it's wrong, but I think it's an important overall property for the studio, and I would like to see it treated with a certain degree of respect. I am an unabashed fan of the 2009 film, and the more I've seen it, the more convinced I am that it's pretty close to a perfect way to kick off a brand-new version of a very familiar property. They nod to the original series in a nice way, they reinvent familiar characters, and they made something that had a new flavor that was all its own. The sequel is a problematic »


- Drew McWeeny

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Fox finally gets its hands on 'Flash Gordon'

13 hours ago

(Cbr) Look out Ming the Merciles, because Fox has officially planted its flag on Mongo. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the studio has finally nailed down the rights to a "Flash Gordon" film following a year of work by producer John Davis. The script will be written by "Star Trek 3" writers J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay, based on a treatment by George Nolfi of "Bourne Ultimatum" fame. The broad strokes of the story are well-established by now (it has been 80 years after all): a half-mad scientist named Dr. Hans Zasrkov kidnaps handsome polo player (or, later, football player) Flash Gordon and his companion Dale Arden and takes them by rocket ship to the planet Mongo, where the villainous Ming has been hurling asteroids at Earth. Gordon adapts to the new world and quickly becomes Ming’s adversary. Created by famed cartoonist Alex Raymond to compete with "Buck Rogers »


- TJ Dietsch, Comic Book Resources

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Meg Ryan lending her voice to 'How I Met Your Dad' pilot

14 hours ago

Meg Ryan is ready to tell the story of "How I Met Your Dad." The romantic comedy legend has been cast as the narrator for the pilot of the "How I Met Your Mother" spin-off, according to Entertainment Weekly. Although we don't know for sure yet, the pilot is likely to be picked up for series order by CBS based on the long-running success of "Mother" and the pilot's pedigree.  Ryan will play the unseen future version of Sally, who will narrate the flashbacks in which Greta Gerwig will play a younger version of the character. Bob Saget provided a similar service in "Himym." Best known for such big screen rom-coms as "When Harry Met Sally...," "Sleepless in Seattle" and "You've Got Mail," Ryan got her start on the small screen, starring on the CBS soap "As the World Turns" in 1982. She recently appeared on Showtime's "Web Therapy." »


- HitFix Staff

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'Frozen' soundtrack rules albums chart with best sales week yet

14 hours ago

It’s official: Disney's "Frozen" is the longest-running No. 1 soundtrack by an animated film. "Frozen" had its biggest sales week to date — thanks to Easter shopping — selling 259,000 copies (+ 94%), according to Nielsen SoundScan. The album has spent 11 nonconsecutive weeks in the top spot of the Billboard 200, beating the previous record holder, Disney's "The Lion King," which reigned for 10. "Frozen" has sold 2.3 million copies since it came out in November. A No. 2 is hip-hop singer August Alsina’s debut album, "Testimony,” with 190,000.  Rock band Needtobreathe enters at No. 3 with “Rivers In the Wasteland" (49,000), earning its highest-charting effort to date. Its 2011 album, "The Reckoning,” debuted and and peaked at No. 6. Jason Derulo’s "Talk Dirty” scores his first-ever top 10 album, starting at No. 4 with 44,000. His 2010 self-titled debut sold 42,000 copies in its first week. The title track off "Talk Dirty” hit No. 1 on the pop songs airplay chart this week. Singer-songwriter Ingrid Michaelson’s "Lights Out" bows at No. »


- Whitney Phaneuf

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Courteney Cox makes directorial debut at Tribeca

14 hours ago

New York (AP) — Courteney Cox's directorial debut is uniquely personal. It features a cameo from her daughter, Coco, songs by her boyfriend, Snow Patrol's Johnny McDaid, and a scene with her ex-husband, David Arquette. The film opens with 9-year-old Coco singing a song of McDaid's. Later, she briefly appears to spray her father, Arquette, with a hose. As a proud mother, it's Cox's favorite scene. "I couldn't have cut that out," said Cox, who acknowledges their family dynamics are unusually friendly. "If I needed four seconds, that would be the last four seconds to go." Cox will premiere the film, "Just Before I Go," on Thursday at the Tribeca Film Festival. It's the first stab at feature-film directing for the 49-year-old TV star, who readied herself for the opportunity by directing a short, a Lifetime movie and 10 episodes of her TBS sitcom "Cougar Town." "Just Before I Go »


- AP

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