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Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling to star in movie about late-night TV host

57 minutes ago

The actors to topline a comedy written by Kaling that is described as cross between The Devil Wears Prada and Broadcast News

Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling are to co-star in a movie about a late night TV talk-show host.

According to Variety, the as-yet-untitled film will be written by Kaling and will star Thompson as a veteran broadcaster in danger of losing her long-running series after she hires her first female writer, played by Kaling. Sources told the magazine to expect a cross between Broadcast News and The Devil Wears Prada.

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- Catherine Shoard

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Tom Hanks crashes wedding photoshoot in Central Park – video

4 hours ago

The Oscar-winning actor was jogging through Central Park in New York, when he bumped into Elisabeth and Ryan who were having their wedding photos taken. Hanks happily posed for photos with the couple and later posted a picture to his own Instagram account congratulating the newlyweds. He joked that he could officiate the wedding “if the other guy cancels” because he is an ordained minister.

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- Guardian Staff

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Has Jj Abrams ruined plans to expand the Star Wars universe?

14 hours ago

Is it any wonder Rogue One lacks The Force Awakens hype when Abrams recently confirmed franchise isn’t the same without Skywalker and Solo clans?

You might think the worst Star Wars movie of all time has to be The Phantom Menace, the film that introduced Jar Jar Binks, midichloreans and the tedious galactic senate. But you’d be wrong, for there are far worse episodes of the long-running space saga lurking in the more fetid corners of a galaxy far, far away.

First up is the 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special, featuring an obviously wasted Carrie Fisher, what seems like hours of wookie grunting, and a deeply weird segue in which Chewbacca’s freaky-looking dad, Lumpy, has a private sexual moment with his brand-new virtual reality machine. But rivalling it for sheer, brazen awfulness, if only because the holiday special has something of that “so bad it’s good” vibe, »

- Ben Child

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Oscars 2017: best foreign language race stacked with auteurs and provocations

14 hours ago

In gunning for gold, many countries have opted to elect bold auteurs like Paul Verhoeven and Pedro Almodóvar as their mascots. Will the tactic pay off?

This year’s Academy award for best foreign language film went to Hungary’s daring Holocaust drama Son of Saul, the universally lauded yet undeniably difficult to watch debut from director László Nemes. Next year, it’s doubtful a newcomer will once again take gold.

Related: Elle review: Paul Verhoeven's brazen rape revenge comedy is a dangerous delight

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- Nigel M Smith

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Viola Davis to star in Steve McQueen's heist thriller Widows

14 hours ago

The 12 Years a Slave film-maker is making an adaptation of the popular 1983 British miniseries about four robbers’ widows who band together for a big score

Viola Davis has paired up with 12 Years a Slave director Steve McQueen for the film-maker’s forthcoming heist thriller Widows.

Based on the 1983 British miniseries of the same name, from Prime Suspect’s Lynda La Plante, the adaptation will boast a screenplay from Gone Girl writer Gillian Flynn, who is co-writing the film with McQueen.

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- Nigel M Smith

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20th Century Women trailer: Mike Mills' new film starring Greta Gerwig – video

17 hours ago

Greta Gerwig, Annette Bening and Elle Fanning star in the new movie from the director of Beginners, which premieres next week at the New York film festival. Set in Santa Barbara in 1979, the film is about three women from a different era of the last century, who come together to teach a teenage boy about life and love, sex and freedom.

20th Century Women will be released in the Us on 25 December and in the UK on 20 January 2017

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- Entertainment One

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Bobby Breen obituary

17 hours ago

Actor and singer who started out as a Hollywood child star

Bobby Breen, who has died aged 87, belongs on the long list of Hollywood child stars whose careers were terminated or blunted by adolescence. It was particularly poignant for the curly-haired, cherubic Breen because his fame resided mainly in his high, prepubescent singing voice. Rainbow on the River (1936) was perhaps his best-known film, the title song also becoming his greatest hit on Decca records.

From the age of eight to 11, from 1936 to 1939, Breen, under contract to Rko Pictures, starred in eight hit movies, almost rivalling Shirley Temple and Freddie Bartholomew in popularity. The modest semi-musicals were cleverly constructed vehicles that highlighted his clear, boy soprano tones and natural acting ability. Although all the characters he played had one parent or were orphans, Breen was a cheerful, spunky child, who avoided the saccharine elements usual in such portrayals (like, for example, »

- Ronald Bergan

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Hollywood’s most ageist casting decisions – from witches to ‘impossible’ mums

17 hours ago

A new California law allows actors to remove their age from the Internet Movie Database to stop discrimination. Will it be enough to stop ludicrous roles such as these?

How to combat the age-old problem of ageism in Hollywood? More female directors? Less of a gender pay gap? A special taskforce led by Meryl Streep, Helen Mirren and Jennifer Lawrence to persuade the industry that there is more to womanhood after 40 than being a grandmother or a witch?

It appears the answer is a landmark law, effective from next year in California only, that permits actors to request the removal of their age from professional entertainment sites such as IMDb. Which, you might say, compounds rather than solves the problem by encouraging actors to hide their age if they want more work. But never mind.

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- Chitra Ramaswamy

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Fences trailer: Denzel Washington and Viola Davis face off in Oscar-tipped film

19 hours ago

A charged adaptation of August Wilson’s Pulitzer prize-winning play about a dysfunctional family dynamic is being pushed as an awards contender

Denzel Washington and Viola Davis appear in fiery form in the first trailer for Fences, reprising their Tony award-winning performances from August Wilson’s Pulitzer-winning play of the same name.

Related: Oscars 2017: five things we've learned about this year's race from Toronto

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- Guardian Staff

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Tim Burton: 'When I first came to England I thought, Wow! I'm home!' – video interview

20 hours ago

Director Tim Burton talks about his new movie, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, and how the ‘texture, weather, seasons and age’ of the UK struck him as sympathetic after the sun and colour of a childhood in California. He also speaks about his background in animation and the appeal of the freaky narrative

• Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children opens on 29 September

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- Andrew Pulver and Gary Marshall

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Bridget Jones's Baby still the daddy in UK as Finding Dory hits motherlode

21 hours ago

Third big-screen outing for Helen Fielding’s much-loved comic creation holds on to the top spot thanks to rapturous word of mouth, with Disney’s animation continued to get tills ringing

The residual affection for endearingly self-sabotaging singleton Bridget Jones meant it was always likely that a large audience would show up on opening weekend, which it did, resulting in an impressive UK debut of £8.11m. What happened next was always going to be harder to call – word-of-mouth would play a big factor in Bridget Jones’s Baby’s continued fortunes.

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- Charles Gant

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Sarah Jessica Parker: new Sex and the City movie 'a possibility'

23 hours ago

The star has said the return of hit HBO show, either on small screen or as a third film, remains under discussion

Sarah Jessica Parker says the return of Sex and the city remains a “possibility”.

The actor, who played Carrie Bradshaw in the hit television comedy and two films, said she and her cast-mates from the series had not ruled out reprising their roles.

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- Press Association

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Alan Bennett's Diaries Live trailer: 'I long for a donkey' – video

27 September 2016 2:51 AM, PDT

Adam Low’s new documentary, Alan Bennett’s Diaries, follows the writer around the UK and to New York over the course of a year, reflecting on the importance of music in his life, his relationship with partner Rupert Thomas – and his desire to own a donkey

• The film will be broadcast across the UK on 16 November, followed by a live Q&A with Bennett from his local library in Primrose Hill

• Bennett’s new collection of diaries, Keeping On, Keeping On, is published on 20 October by Faber & Faber and Profile Books

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- Picturehouse Entertainment

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Snowden movie 'preposterous', says former Nsa deputy director

27 September 2016 2:39 AM, PDT

Chris Inglis claims Oliver Stone’s film wildly misrepresents agency and says Edward Snowden’s ‘Jason Bourne-style’ role is grossly exaggerated

The former deputy director of the National Security Agency has taken issue with Oliver Stone’s biopic of one-time Nsa employee Edward Snowden.

Speaking to National Public Radio, Chris Inglis, who retired in 2014 after 28 years at the agency, said the film’s narrative “was a gross mischaracterisation of what Nsa’s purposes are. And a gross exaggeration of Edward Snowden’s own particular role in that. To the point where you could come away from looking at that movie, saying, ‘Why are 50,000 people at the Nsa dead wrong? And one is absolutely correct?’”

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- Catherine Shoard

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Harry Potter again tops poll of best book-to-film adaptations

27 September 2016 1:55 AM, PDT

Jk Rowling’s series remains cinemagoers’ favourite ahead of multiple works by Stephen King and Jrr Tolkien

Harry Potter has again topped a poll by Odeon to find the best-loved book-to-film adaptations, with 32% of 2,000 cinemagoers placing the series in their top 10. The result echoes a similar survey in March 2015.

However, Charles DickensA Christmas Carol was a surprise entry at No 2 (it didn’t feature last year), with 30% of respondents citing it in their top 10. The Shawshank Redemption, meanwhile, took third place, with 28%.

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- Catherine Shoard

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Split review – James McAvoy is 23 shades of creepy in M Night Shyamalan chiller

27 September 2016 1:50 AM, PDT

Surprise! The Sixth Sense director’s shock-twist kidnap thriller premiered in a secret screening at Austin’s Fantastic Fest – a masterful blend of Hitchcock, horror and therapy session

M Night Shyamalan achieved his final form this week at Fantastic Fest, the annual genre film bonanza in Austin, Texas. The king of twists and surprises brought next January’s release, Split, as a “secret screening” early premiere. We in the audience had no clue what we’d be seeing until the opening credits, which didn’t arrive until after a prologue. It was the first in a series of “aha!” moments.

Casey (Anya Taylor-Joy) is left without a ride after a pity invite to a classmate’s party. A helpful dad is willing to give her a lift home, but the two giggly friends in the back (Haley Lu Richardson and Jessica Sula) are too busy looking at their phones to »

- Jordan Hoffman

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Herschell Gordon Lewis: low-brow schlock horror director with a kind of horrible genius

26 September 2016 11:00 AM, PDT

Lewis was the master of bargain-basement splatter without whom we would not have the likes of Robert Rodriguez or Quentin Tarantino

One of the most extraordinary figures in the history of popular American moviegoing has departed the stage: film director Herschell Gordon Lewis was the “godfather of gore” and the “sultan of splatter” who in the 1960s energetically pushed the envelope of bad taste with low-cost, low-brow schlock-horror exploitation pictures. Lots of blood, lots of screaming, lots of nudity – and lots of money.

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- Peter Bradshaw

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Splatter king Herschell Gordon Lewis dies aged 87

26 September 2016 10:43 AM, PDT

Horror film pioneer broke ground with films such as Blood Feast and Two Thousand Maniacs! before returning to advertising in the mid-1970s

Exploitation legend and “godfather of gore” Herschell Gordon Lewis has died aged 87. His longtime distributors Something Weird Video (named after Lewis’ 1967 feature) broke the news in a Facebook post.

With his 1963 film Blood Feast, Lewis is widely credited with pioneering the splatter genre, despite it being considered “an insult even to the most puerile and salacious of audiences” in a Variety review. A later critique described it as “one of the important releases in film history, ushering in a new acceptance of explicit violence that was obviously just waiting to be exploited”.

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- Andrew Pulver

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Law passed enabling actors to remove age from IMDb

26 September 2016 9:36 AM, PDT

California’s Customer Records bill has been welcomed by actors’ union SAG-aftra as a welcome challenge to age discrimination in the film industry

The state of California has passed legislation that will enable actors and other film industry workers to remove their ages from the Internet Movie Database and other publicly accessible websites.

The Customer Records bill, numbered Ab-1687, was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown on 24 September and specifies that subscribers to a “commercial online entertainment employment service provider” can demand that age information be removed. The rationale is to “ensure that information … regarding an individual’s age will not be used in furtherance of employment or age discrimination.”

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- Andrew Pulver

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The Birth of a Nation launches in-theater voter registration initiative

26 September 2016 9:19 AM, PDT

Fox Searchlight, which distributes Nate Parker’s slavery drama, said giving filmgoers the opportunity to register ‘encourages everyone to be part of Us history’

In honor of Tuesday’s National Voter Registration day in the Us, distribution company Fox Searchlight has launched an in-theater registration initiative tied to Nate Parker’s slavery drama The Birth of a Nation.

Related: Nate Parker: director with a back story | Observer profile

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- Nigel M Smith

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