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Save Kermit! Why the Muppets debacle is so devastating

The fight between the Hensons and Steve Whitmire, who has long played Kermit the Frog, has got very ugly very quickly. Whatever happens, we must preserve this witty, genius puppet

The dispute between Steve Whitmire and the Hensons is starting to get ugly. If you’ve been out of the loop, perhaps because you’ve had the good sense to construct a childhood-protecting firewall, here are the basics.

When Jim Henson died in 1990, Whitmire inherited the role of Kermit the Frog. He was Kermit in highs like the Muppet Christmas Carol and the 2011 Muppets movie, as well as lows like Muppets from Space and the 2015 Muppets sitcom. However, it was recently revealed that Disney had fired Whitmire. Ostensibly, according to a blogpost written by Whitmire, Disney sacked him because he was a one-man barricade dedicated to preserving the spirit of Jim Henson’s creations in the face of a corporate monolith.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

The Bottom Shelf: Troll 2, Phantasm, The Entity

Nick Aldwinckle Jun 5, 2017

We round up the latest horror-tinged Blu-ray and DVD releases....

So, after a brief hiatus, it turns out a lot’s happened in the few months between these round ups. A snap general election has been called, terror has struck at the heart of Manchester and a scandal approaching Watergate levels has hit the U.S presidency. More importantly, Troll 2 has finally come to UK Netflix and is the cherry on the cake made entirely of a series of kind of wonderful, kind of… not films on DVD and Bluray.

So, 1990’s Troll 2, you may or may not be aware of, is generally regarded as one of the very greatest 'so bad it’s good' movies. There are many worse (The Rollerblade Seven or Gary Oldman little person rom-com Tiptoes come to mind), though it’s difficult to think of many other truly awful movies
See full article at Den of Geek »

On this day in pop culture history: the first ‘X-Men’ movie opened in theaters

  • Hitfix
16 years ago today was (arguably) the beginning of the modern superhero movie era. Even if you give that distinction to Spider-Man or Iron Man, it’s undeniable that the first X-Men movie paved the way for the proliferation of caped heroes in Hollywood today. In 2000, the only other superhero movies released were negatively received comedies The Specials and Citizen Toxie: The Toxic Avenger IV, and M. Night Shyamalan’s Unbreakable — a superhero movie in a time before they could be baldfaced superhero movies. Now, everyone wants in on the superhero genre, which is now producing the buzziest and most lucrative blockbusters of 2016. The ninth and most recent X-Men movie, Apocalypse, ultimately delivered disappointing numbers in the ever-more-crowded superhero line-up, but that didn’t stop Fox from ordering a pilot for what looks to be a series based in the X-Men world. Other notable July 14 happenings in pop culture history: • 1966:
See full article at Hitfix »

The Muppets Recap: Josh Groban Is a Douche

  • Vulture
The Muppets Recap: Josh Groban Is a Douche
The opening credits to The Muppets is just a title card — black text on a white background, underscored by a xylophone rendition of the “it’s time to get things started” from The Muppet Show theme song. It’s totally fine, but remember the Muppets Show theme song? How about Muppet Babies? Oh man, remember the music from the movies? Two episodes in, and that kind of disappointed nostalgia is where I stand on The Muppets in general. It’s fun. It’s watchable. But why watch anything else when you could rewatch The Muppet Movie for the gazillionth time instead?To be fair, it’s not The Muppets’ creators’ fault that, two episodes into a mockumentary-style network sitcom, they’ve been unable to capture the magic of “The Rainbow Connection.” And the Muppets haven’t been an unmitigated success on every outing. (Okay, I am just talking about Muppets From Space here.
See full article at Vulture »

Chevy Chase comedy Oh! Heavenly Dog set for a remake

20th Century Fox has announced that it is set to remake the Chevy Chase comedy Oh! Heavenly Dog, with Tim Hill signing on to direct as well as co-writing the script with Dave Johnson.

Released in 1980, Oh! Heavenly Dog starred Chase as a private investigator who is killed after discovering a dead body. Seeing as the afterlife is yet to decide whether he’s destined for Heaven or Hell, he’s given a shot at redemption by returning to Earth as a dog in order to crack the case and solve his own murder.

Hill’s previous credits include Muppets from Space, Alvin and the Chipmunks and Hop, while he was also announced as director on another 80s remake Short Circuit back in 2011, although that project seems to be stuck in development hell.
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Chevy Chase's Weirdest Film Is Getting Remade

The 1980s were a magical time, a time when you could make a movie about a private investigator reincarnated as a dog to avoid going to hell. And now it turns out that one of Chevy Chase.s most bizarre movies, Oh! Heavenly Dog, is getting remade. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox 2000 is ramping up development on a new version of Oh! Heavenly Dog. Tim Hill, who re-launched the Alvin and the Chipmunks franchise back in 2007, and helped develop SpongeBob Squarepants, is in line to direct the remake. Dave Johnson will handle the scripting duties, and Temple Hill, the production company behind The Maze Runner franchise, will handle that side of things. As Hill is also responsible for the likes of Muppets from Space, Garfield 2, and the Easter Bunny comedy Hop, so it feels like we.re in for a live-action/animation hybrid when the revamped Oh! Heavenly Dog
See full article at Cinema Blend »

'Oh Heavenly Dog' Remake Planned, Will Benji Return?

  • MovieWeb
'Oh Heavenly Dog' Remake Planned, Will Benji Return?
The 1980 Chevy Chase comedy Oh! Heavenly Dog is getting the remake treatment at Fox 2000, with the studio hiring Tim Hill (Hop) to direct. The filmmaker will also co-write the script with Dave Johnson. Temple Hill, the production company behind the young adult franchise The Maze Runner, are producing. The original movie was set up as a starring vehicle for Chevy Chase and his canine co-star Benji, who were equally popular back when the film was made, with the comedy existing solely on the box office draw of its marquee names.

The story centered on a private investigator (Chevy Chase) who is stabbed to death after discovering a dead body. It is decided that he won't go to Heaven or Hell, but instead is sent back to Earth as a dog, tasked with solving his own murder. The original comedy movie also starred Jane Seymour, Omar Sharif and Robert Morley. The dog was played by Benjean,
See full article at MovieWeb »

93 movie remakes and reboots currently in the works

  • Den of Geek
From The Craft and The Birds to The Fugitive and She's All That, the many film reboots and remakes currently in the works...

Over the years that Den Of Geek has been going, we've regularly been charting the assortment of reboots and remakes that are making their way through the Hollywood system. This, then, is the current state of play. We've removed a bunch of projects that seem utterly dead - the once mooted remakes of Videodrome and Timecrimes, for instance - but we'll keep this list up to date as and when we hear of more.

Without further ado, here's what's coming up...

Akira

One of Hollywood's most on and off projects, the current state of the live action Akira remake is that it's back in the works. Marco J Ramirez, the showrunner for season 2 of Netflix's Daredevil show, has been hired to pen a screenplay. Warner Bros is still backing the film,
See full article at Den of Geek »

Hulk Hogan Up For "Expendables 4" Villain

Though Lionsgate hasn't officially begun moving on a fourth "The Expendables" movie yet, franchise star Sylvester Stallone revealed back in March that he's already made initial plans with one of them being a return to the R rating of the first two films.

We know Stallone will be back as Barney Ross, but today comes word of a potential new cast member - pro wrestling legend Hulk Hogan. During a Q&A session at the Body Power Expo in Birmingham, Hogan dropped a tease that he and Stallone have been in touch about him potentially playing a villain in the film:

"We're trying to figure out a way to maybe turn me into the most evil man in the world. Y'know, Stallone gave me my first break and he's been a great friend. We had a great conversation, talking about the possibilities. Can I still run, can I still jump?
See full article at Dark Horizons »

Ranked: Every Summer Movie Season Since 1980 - Part 2

  • Cinelinx
We’ve reviewed every summer movie season since 1980 to find out which are the best, and which are the worst. Last week we posted our picks for the worst, and here we post our picks for the best.

2015 and 2016 may just be the most overthetop summer movie seasons yet. It seems like nearly every movie slated for a summer 2015 or 2016 release is heavily anticipated. Because of these impending summers of movie awesomeness, we’ve decided to take a look back at summer movie seasons of years past. The idea of the summer movie season is currently in full swing, but it didn’t catch on immediately. Hollywood had to do its fair share of experimenting to determine what types of films would be most successful. As a result, some summer movie seasons have been better than others. We’ve reviewed them all for you and ranked them from worst to best.
See full article at Cinelinx »

Summer Movies Flashback 1999: 'South Park' surprise and scathing 'Star Wars' reactions

  • Hitfix
Summer Movies Flashback 1999: 'South Park' surprise and scathing 'Star Wars' reactions
Our continuing look back at some of the biggest summers we've lived through takes us back 15 years to one of the best recent movie seasons overall. In honor of the 2014 summer movie season, Team HitFix will be delivering a mini-series of articles flashing back to key summers from years past. There will be one each month, diving into the marquee events of the era, their impact on the writer and their implications on today's multiplex culture. We continue today with a look back at the summer of 1999. It was the summer I became Moriarty. To be fair, I had been contributing to Ain't It Cool for a little while already by that point, and I had been slowly but surely embracing the potential of the website and the audience that I was reaching. I had already taken a few trips to Austin, including a memorable stay at the third Quentin Tarantino Film Festival,
See full article at Hitfix »

Why The Muppets Will Live Forever

  • HeyUGuys
This past Friday saw the UK cinema release of Muppets Most Wanted, directed by James Bobin and starring Ricky Gervais, Tina Fey and, of course, those lovable Muppets. This movie marks the 8th theatrical released Muppet movie in the last 35 years, and their creation dates back over half a century. Despite this, The Muppets seem to be as popular as ever, with 2011’s The Muppets drawing $165M at the worldwide box office.

How, after so many years, and numerous ups and downs, are the Muppets still seeing such success? What is it about The Muppets that has made them the most enduring ensemble cast in cinematic history?

The first, and maybe most important, element of The Muppets’ continuing success has to be their creator, Jim Henson. When Henson created these lovable characters, he imbued them with perhaps his most valuable trait. Positivity. In a world where negative emotions and opinions
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Who's your favourite Muppet? Kermit, Piggy, Swedish Chef?

Who's your favourite Muppet? Kermit, Piggy, Swedish Chef?
The Muppets make their triumphant big screen return this week in Muppets Most Wanted, a continental caper that sees Ricky Gervais's villainous Dominic Badguy (it's pronounced Bad-gee!) and Kermit's evil doppelgänger Constantine use the gang as cover for a series of elaborate heists.

With that in mind, Digital Spy staff reminisce about their favourite Muppets below. Scroll down further to cast your vote in our poll and have a say in the comments thread.

Statler and Waldorf - Catriona Wightman, Entertainment Editor

Inside, we're all grumpy old men - which is why Statler and Waldorf are the best thing about the Muppets. Their balcony-based banter never fails to amuse, even when their jokes are pretty much terrible ("They aren't half bad", "Nope, they're all bad").

Statler and Waldorf - and Waldorf's wife Astoria, who's basically Statler in a dress - say what we're all thinking, never fail to be terribly rude,
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

Box office report: 'Divergent' heads straight for $56 million win; 'God's Not Dead' inspires $8.6 million

Box office report: 'Divergent' heads straight for $56 million win; 'God's Not Dead' inspires $8.6 million
Divergent was dauntless at the box office this weekend, easily winning the top spot with an estimated $56 million. Meanwhile, the Muppets failed to take multiplexes in Muppets Most Wanted, earning $16.5 million, and the faith-based indie God’s Not Dead inspired an awesome $8.6 million from just 780 theaters.

Starring Shailene Woodley and Theo James as rebels in a dystopian future, the PG-13 action film Divergent aimed for the same moviegoers who gave The Hunger Games a surprise $152.5 million opening weekend in March, 2012. With a $56 million debut, Divergent didn’t reach those heights — and even fell slightly below the predictions of some analysts,
See full article at EW.com - Inside Movies »

Muppets Facts: 19 Things You (Probably) Don't Know About Jim Henson's Creations

  • Moviefone
It's been decades since visionary Jim Henson first created the Muppets, yet today his lovable creations are as popular as ever.

But for as much time as the Muppets have spent in the spotlight, there's still a lot you don't know about Henson's clever creations. From the first national Muppet "star" to the materials that created the Kermit prototype, here are 19 things you probably don't know about The Muppets.

1. Jim Henson created The Muppets in 1955, making them nearly 60 years old!

2. Henson coined the term "Muppet," but it is not a combination of the words "marionette" and "puppet" -- a belief that was once supported by Henson himself. Rather, it has been reported that Henson just liked the sound of the word.

3. A key factor for the Muppets success is that Henson's realization that TV would allow him to put the puppets front and center, while still hiding the puppeteers. With
See full article at Moviefone »

Ranking the Muppet Movies from Worst to Best

  • Movies.com
If you want to make a grown man cry, all you have to do is bring up "Rainbow Connection." Few characters carry the cultural cache of the Muppets, who have been delighting children and moving adults for nearly 40 years. Jim Henson's genius creations made it okay to love talking animals made out of cloth and, more importantly, they starred in countless hours of entertainment that bridges the entertainment gap between kids and their parents. With the gang returning in Muppets Most Wanted, it's time to do what any Muppet fan worth his salt is probably doing already: obsessively rank all of their theatrical adventures from worst to best. (Note: Muppets Most Wanted will be added to the ranking on Friday.)   7. Muppets from Space (1999) Although not nearly...

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See full article at Movies.com »

We Ranked Every Muppet Movie, Ever: Which Is The Most Fuzzworthy?

The Muppets are back, and if early reviews are any indication "Muppets Most Wanted" ranks up there with the best from those lovable, Jim Henson created fuzzy puppets. But just where will "Most Wanted" fall when all is said and done? Here's the definitive ranking of every Muppet movie, ever: 7. "Muppets From Space" The first entirely original Muppet movie after the unfortunate death of Henson, "Muppets From Space" isn't bad — it's just forgettable. ...

By Alex Zalben
See full article at MTV Movie News »

Review: Kermit & Co. bring the fun (and the fuzz) in delightful 'Muppets Most Wanted'

  • Hitfix
Review: Kermit & Co. bring the fun (and the fuzz) in delightful 'Muppets Most Wanted'
As a professional film critic -- whatever that may be -- I have a handful of concrete rules by which I ply my ostensible trade, and not reviewing films by or heavily involving close friends is one of them. Which presents a bit of a problem when tasked with writing about any given Muppet movie. No, I can't claim I've ever knocked back a beer with Kermit the Frog, gone shopping with Miss Piggy or got close to any of the cloth-skinned crowd without the dividing wall of a television screen between us, but damn it if I don't feel closer to them than I do to any number of human names in my address book. Growing up, I knew their vaudeville numbers inside out. I'd record the umpteenth rerun of even the Crystal Gayle episode with completist's excitement. And I treasured my Kermit toothbrush until the bristles began falling out,
See full article at Hitfix »

John Henson, Son of Muppets Creator Jim Henson, Dead at 48

John Henson, the son of the late Muppets creator Jim Henson, died of a sudden massive heart attack on Friday while at home with his daughter. He was only 48 years old. Henson, like his parents, was a puppeteer. He served as a board member of The Jim Henson Company and was behind the ogre character Sweetums. His credits include "Muppets From Space," "Muppet Treasure Island" and "It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie." The Muppets have recently returned to the spotlight, thanks to the "The Muppets" and "Muppets Most Wanted" films and a series of Super Bowl commercials. Henson's father, Jim, also died at a young age. He was only 53 when he passed away from pneumonia in 1990.
See full article at Worst Previews »

John Henson Dead: Son of Muppets Creator Jim Henson Dies of 'Massive Sudden' Heart Attack at 48

  • Moviefone
John Henson, the 48-year-old son of late Muppets genius Jim Henson, died of a "sudden massive heart attack" on Friday.

Henson's death was confirmed by The Jim Henson Company on Saturday, which posted the news of his passing to the company's official Facebook page.

Henson, like his father, Jim, and mother, Jane, was a puppeteer. His credits include work on "The Muppets' Wizard of Oz," "It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie," "Muppets From Space," and "Muppet Treasure Island." He was best known for being puppeteer behind the larger-than-life character "Sweetums."

Henson is survived by daughters Katrina and Sydney, and wife Gyongyi, as well as siblings Lisa, Cheryl, Brian, and Heather. A private service is currently being planned.
See full article at Moviefone »
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