1-20 of 28 items from 2015 « Prev | Next »
I interviewed Takeshi Kitano, aka "Beat" Takeshi, in spring of 2001 regarding "Brother," his first film shot on American soil. Kitano is arguably, still, the biggest star in Japan, one whose influence crosscuts virtually all areas of media.
Memories: Kitano was surrounded by a small entourage of Japanese men, one of whom was his interpreter. He was formal and stoic in his interaction with me, but never unfriendly. As Sofia Coppola so deftly portrayed in "Lost in Translation," the English to Japanese process of translating can often be time-consuming for what amounts to seemingly little that's been said. Kitano rarely made eye contact or smiled, although when he would laugh softly, a crooked grin would form on one side of his mouth, the right. The other striking thing about Kitano's appearance was a tic, or slight tremor, that would appear on the left side of his face, the after-effect of a »
- The Hollywood Interview.com
While AMC gave it a run for its money for a few years with Mad Men and Breaking Bad, both of those series have now ended, and HBO is undoubtedly the most prestigious network on television. It’s not only host to one of the most popular series in the medium—Game of Thrones—but its content is as varied as it is impressive. Shows like True Detective, Veep, and Silicon Valley could not be more different from each other, and yet they’re all brilliant in their own ways. But HBO is not and has never been a one-hit network, and a lengthy profile in THR reveals some incredibly interesting prospects that are currently in development, chief of which being a play to nab former Espn personality Bill Simmons. The network has had conversations with Simmons about a TV show along with “heavy digital extensions” that play right into »
- Adam Chitwood
I am not going to step onto a soap box and preach to you about how some films have gone too far. Please, go further. I am not going to rant about how certain things should never be portrayed on film. Please, push the envelope and break boundaries. I will not call for censorship and restraint in exercising free speech. Please, by all means, shock and disgust us till the cows come home. However, what I will do, is to persistently and relentlessly call things as I see them.
This movie is garbage. Not because its vulgar or offensive, but because its a failure. I have seen the entire trilogy now, and while in all honesty I can admit that I am no big fan of the franchise as a whole, my disdain reaches its monumental peak »
- Travis Keune
Rarely has the word “final” been so welcome in a title as it is in “The Human Centipede III (Final Sequence).” Tom Six’s latest, largest-scaled and most lamentable entry yet in the gross-out horror series manages to be completely obnoxious even before the gross stuff kicks in. Of course, that will only heighten its curiosity value among the usual seekers of lowest-level genre excess. Pic opens May 22 in New York and Los Angeles, though as with its predecessors, primary fan access will be through simultaneous release to VOD.
The prior chapters’ leads return in new roles here as warden and accountant of the George H.W. Bush State Prison, a (presumably Texan) hellhole experiencing constant staff turnover and inmate violence. Only exacerbating those woes is cartoonishly maniacal Bill Boss (the original “Centipede’s” mad doctor, Dieter Laser), a chrome-domed German of a type that would seem over-the-top even in 1970s Italian Nazisploitation cinema. »
- Dennis Harvey
A former senior producer of ABC News’ “Nightline,” Richard Harris was in the middle of the storm in 2002 when ABC tried to woo David Letterman to take over the 11:30 p.m. slot that had long been home to “Nightline.” Letterman showed his character not long afterward when he agreed to sit for a rare one-on-one interview with Ted Koppel, which Harris produced. Here Harris shares his behind-the-scenes memories of that experience.
As the parade of celebrities has marched through the Ed Sullivan Theater during the past few months to pay respects to David Letterman, they’ve lavishing him with adulation, leaving him with a half-smile and looking slightly bemused and uncomfortable.
Getting inside the head of the gap-toothed goofball from Indiana to decipher what he’s truly thinking is no small feat. Famous for his Top Ten List and showcasing stupid pet and human tricks, Letterman’s self-deprecating, sometimes »
- Richard Harris
Dr. Mehmet Oz has come under fire from a group of fellow doctors who want him removed from the Columbia University’s medical school board. Oz currently serves as the vice chairman of the school’s department of surgery. The group took issue with claims he has made that they say lack scientific backing. Dr. Henry Miller, the Robert Wesson Fellow in scientific philosophy and public policy at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, wrote in the letter: “He’s a fake and a quack and a charlatan.” See Photos: 11 TV Shows Canceled by Controversy — From ‘Honey Boo Boo’ to ‘Politically Incorrect »
- Joe Otterson
By the time he opens the program with a monologue, he has spent every waking hour since getting up on Thursday preparing for the show, he said in an interview. He has little choice. Unlike most other talk shows, Maher’s program is live and he must pivot from standup comedy to serious encounters with authors and politicians, and then wrap everything up with the delivery of one of TV’s most barbed commentaries – all without a break.
“Live on tape means ‘not live,’ of course. It was live at some point. The difference with our show is it is ‘live’ live. As I’m saying it, you are seeing it,” he said. “It does add an extra, kind of tightrope element to it, »
- Brian Steinberg
“Top Gear” host Jeremy Clarkson had a few choice words for the BBC during a speech at a charity auction in London on Thursday. “The BBC have f–ked themselves,” Clarkson said in a speech the Guardian caught on camera. “ was a great show and they f–ked it up.” Clarkson was suspended from the popular show after a fight with a producer in which Clarkson allegedly tried to punch the man in the face. See Photos: 11 TV Shows Canceled by Controversy — From ‘Honey Boo Boo’ to ‘Politically Incorrect’ “I didn’t foresee my sacking, but I would like to do one. »
- Joe Otterson
The suspension of host Jeremy Clarkson prompted the withdrawal of “Top Gear” from BBC schedules on Tuesday, and the network is refusing to comment on whether the popular show will ever return. Clarkson, who is infamous for his politically incorrect remarks, reportedly got into a fight with a producer last week and tried to punch him in the face. See photos: 11 TV Shows Canceled by Controversy — From ‘Honey Boo Boo’ to ‘Politically Incorrect’ (Photos) The 54-year-old British host already received a “final warning” from the BBC for using a racist word during filming last year. His latest incident is “pending an investigation, »
- Debbie Emery
ABC Family’s “The Fosters” has ignited a sharply divide debate after featuring a gay kiss between two of the family drama’s 13-year-old male characters, marking the youngest same sex kiss in TV history. The intimate moment between Jude (Hayden Byerly) and Connor (Gavin MacIntosh) sparked a flurry of reactions from social media, with some praising the show for tackling such a hot-button issue in an elegant fashion and others critiquing the show’s creators and the network for airing a same-sex kiss between two underage actors. See Photos: 11 TV Shows Canceled by Controversy — From ‘Honey Boo Boo’ to ‘Politically Incorrect’ “So. »
- Travis Reilly
Jon Stewart said Tuesday that he would step down from Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” after 17 years, leaving a new hole in the ranks of latenight television and setting up another challenge for the Viacom-owned cable network, which recently bid farewell to popular timeslot host Stephen Colbert.
Stewart’s current contract is believed to end around the fall of 2015, but the time of his departure is uncertain. He told viewers on Tuesday night’s broadcast the he might leave as early as July or perhaps stay until sometime in December. “Daily Show” has run on Comedy Central longer than any other program except for the animated “South Park.”
The news is not entirely surprising. Stewart, 52, had discussed the possibility of leaving “The Daily Show” while promoting “Rosewater,” a film that marked his directorial debut. And yet, his departure means that the backbone of Comedy Central’s lineup is looser »
- Brian Steinberg
Inherent Vice, 2014.
Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson
In 1970, drug-fueled Los Angeles detective Larry “Doc” Sportello investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend.
Reviewer’s note: I have no interest in describing the plot of Inherent Vice in this review. If you want to know what it’s about, there are many places to get that information online.
Expectations are a baggage which, despite best efforts, you sometimes cannot help but bring to a first viewing, especially if that first viewing is for the latest film from Paul Thomas Anderson. He’s a director who has produced films of startling magnitude time after time, and as I sat down to watch this, his seventh film, I was guilty of having it all planned out in my »
- Gary Collinson
The upside-down map of the world and backwards-running clocks on the set on Larry Wilmore’s new “Nightly Show” aren’t the only things askew at Comedy Central. But on Wilmore’s program, that’s intentional.
“Nightly Show” is the noisiest in a series of recent launches on the Viacom-owned network — programs that send ripples across the popular culture. Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel and even Jon Stewart probably could not make the sorts of pointed asides about racial inequity, sexual politics and cultural oddities that Wilmore, a fiftysomething African-American man, can. During a recent taping, an opening line about the sexual-assault controversy raging around Bill Cosby — “The question will be, ‘Did he do it?’ The answer will be, ‘Yes’ ” — treads dangerous ground, but the crowd reacts so well that Wilmore cracks up and has to reshoot the segment’s start.
“This show is a little dangerous sometimes,” Wilmore confides »
- Brian Steinberg
The Parents Television Council is hot and bothered over We tv’s upcoming series “Sex Box” — but not in the way that the network had hoped for.
The watchdog group has thrust itself into the controversy over the show, which will feature couples — duh — having sex in a box, and then talking about it with relationship experts.
See photos: 11 TV Shows Canceled by Controversy — From ‘Honey Boo Boo’ to ‘Politically Incorrect’ (Photos)
The PTC specifically objects to the fact that the show will be aired on a channel that’s bundled with outlets providing more wholesome fare.
“In order for »
- Tim Kenneally
It has been confirmed today that Fox are moving ahead with a live-action X-Men TV series. There were rumours (with the P.I. X-Factor team mentioned as likely candidates for their own show), but this is the first time its development has been made official.
24 producers Evan Katz and Manny Coto will serve as showrunners, while original Star Trek 3 writers Patrick McKay and Jd Payne are set to pen the pilot episode. All four of them will ultimately be given a “Created By” credit when and if it launches.
If? Well, while 20th Century Fox own the film rights to the X-Men, they will need permission from the Disney owned Marvel to move ahead with a small screen adaptation featuring the characters! However, it seems unlikely that they will give it when Marvel appear to be doing all they can to distance themselves from the properties they don’t hold the rights to. »
- Josh Wilding
Bill Maher, 59, fills Us in. 1. I play basketball every day. 2. I have been a PETA board member since 1997. 3. I’ve never missed a taping of either Politically Incorrect or Real Time. 4. The only time I missed a stand-up show was when fog closed an airport! 5. I’m a minority owner of the New York Mets. 6. I jump on a trampoline every day. I believe it is good for my lymph system. Photos: Celebrity Workout Buddies 7. My choice in spirits: tequila and tonic over ice. 8. My favorite movie [...] »
Discovery’s hosts look at what happens to motorists and nearby pedestrians when blasted with powerful explosives
If you’ve ever wondered what nine sticks of dynamite will do to a car, “MythBusters” has finally put the mystery to rest.
In TheWrap‘s exclusive sneak peek from Saturday night’s upcoming episode of the Discovery science show, the “MythBusters” team tapes explosives to a car floor to see just how lethal they can be.
“I’m no ammunition expert, but I don’t think that car is going to be there when the smoke clears,” says host Adam Savage right »
- Itay Hod
“Backstrom,” it turns out, is just 2015-ese for “House,” with Rainn Wilson’s Dwight Schrute elevated to the leading-man role the character always thought he deserved in “The Office.” A mildly defective detective (sorry, Monk) with a bad attitude, Wilson’s title player is prone to offensive and outlandish utterances, while going about the business of deciphering quirky yet banal crimes in the tree-lined, rainy environs of Portland (actually Vancouver). Shepherded along by “Bones’” Hart Hanson, this is the sort of meat-and-potatoes drama that doesn’t feel distinctive enough to do much more than tread water on Fox, even with “American Idol’s” kick-start.
Granted, there’s symmetry in putting this series (adapted from a Swedish book series, with almost nothing except the name to suggest those literary origins) in “The Office’s” old timeslot; and something very specific about the gloomy Northwest setting, where Backstrom is introduced at a crime scene, »
- Brian Lowry
The Colbert Report’s replacement has an old-fashioned format with intelligent content and a distinct lack of middle-aged white men
From the outset, Larry Wilmore’s new show does not seem particularly new. Sure, The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore debuted on 19 January on Comedy Central in The Colbert Report’s old timeslot, but the set looks like an almost exact replication of The Daily Show’s set, down to the red and blue colour scheme.
The format of the show isn’t anything we haven’t seen before, either. It starts with a monologue (which show airing after 11pm doesn’t?) that seems like it could be delivered by Jon Stewart, fellow Daily Show graduate John Oliver, or any of the other sharp-tongued guys named John on cable. Then it turns into a panel show where Wilmore talks to a combination of politicians, activists and entertainers. It’s basically »
- Brian Moylan
Rather than stock its 11:30 p.m. slot with a knockoff of its previous occupant, “The Colbert Report,” in which the host played a bloviating opinion-monger, Comedy Central leased the space out to an entirely new inhabitant. Wilmore’s “Nightly Show” goes where most other talk-show hosts – except perhaps Bill Maher – fear to tread. Wilmore, now the only African-American hosting a major late-night talk show, threw darts at Al Sharpton, Oprah Winfrey, and U.S. race relations, proclaiming an effort to make sure a Harry Potter line of candy bars used free-trade chocolate “the only chocolate that got justice in 2014.”
That’s not a joke you’d expect Jimmy Fallon to be able to make.
It’s not clear that the show’s producers want to make people laugh, »
- Brian Steinberg
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