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6 items from 2017

A modern space opera: has Star Wars escaped the George Lucas worldview?

20 February 2017 8:58 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Disney’s takeover of the Star Wars has seen bigger roles for women and people of colour, in a sophisticated cinematic universe that looks more like the one we live in

It’s pretty obvious that George Lucas, for all his statements to the contrary, does not particularly enjoy watching from the sidelines while other film-makers lead Star Wars into a brave new era. In the wake of The Force Awakens taking the global box office by storm in December 2015, the saga’s creator unwisely quipped to Us talk show host Charlie Rose that he had sold his “kids … to the white slavers that take these things” – referring to Disney’s October 2012 purchase of all rights to the long-running space opera – and criticised Jj Abrams’s film as a “retro” effort. It felt like a low blow from a film-maker whose own efforts to reinvent Star Wars, the execrable prequel trilogy, »

- Ben Child

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Sundance Review: ‘Give Me Future’ is an Illuminating and Rousing Geopolitical Documentary

1 February 2017 1:57 PM, PST | The Film Stage | See recent The Film Stage news »

A modern-day cultural Berlin wall, Cuba may not be receptive to commerce, but it remains open to the art and culture from its neighbor 90 miles north. As such, images of the country remain illusive and seductive to an American viewer. It’s this kinder, gentler world of “normalized” relations that serves as a jumping-off point for Give Me Future, as Edm trio Major Lazer dream of adding a Cuba show to their tour of conflict zones. Known for summer bangers “Lean On” and “Light It Up,” they group has an easier time playing in Pakistan and Venezuela, despite the Caribbean vibes of their most popular hits.

Diplo, Walshy Fire, and Jillionaire have a simple goal: making the world smaller by making the world bigger. Their goal is to find a Cuban-American promotor to work for fourteen months before the announcement of new diplomatic relations between the two countries. Once found, »

- John Fink

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Oprah Winfrey Lands New Gig as Special Contributor to '60 Minutes'

31 January 2017 7:39 AM, PST | Entertainment Tonight | See recent Entertainment Tonight news »

Oprah Winfrey is adding another big accomplishment to her already legendary television resume.

The 63-year-old media mogul will become a special contributor to CBS News' 60 Minutes, the beloved program's executive producer, Jeff Fager, announced on Tuesday. Winfrey will make her first appearance on the Sunday night broadcast this fall, and already has a vision for the types of stories she wants to report on.

"I've been a big admirer of 60 Minutes since my days as a young reporter," Winfrey said in a statement. "I'm so excited and proud to join forces with this historic news program, which for me represents the bastion of journalistic storytelling. At a time when people are so divided, my intention is to bring relevant insight and perspective, to look at what separates us, and help facilitate real conversations between people from different backgrounds."

Watch: Oprah Reveals She's Lost Over 40 Pounds Since Joining Weight Watchers -- 'I Struggle No More'

Fager also expressed »

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Mary Tyler Moore’s Past Struggles and Triumphs: From Finding Sobriety to Her Battle with Diabetes

25 January 2017 12:25 PM, PST | | See recent news »

While her most iconic onscreen persona seemed to handle challenges effortlessly, life wasn’t quite as kind to beloved actress Mary Tyler Moore, who died at age 80 on Wednesday.

Despite achieving sobriety after a battle with alcoholism, and finding peace decades after her only son’s accidental death, Moore’s later years were filled with health woes – struggles she faced publicly and candidly.

Married at only 18 to Richard Meeker in 1955, Moore welcomed her first and only child, Richie, a year later. By 1961, she was starring as the titular character’s wife on The Dick Van Dyke show, but her marriage was over. »

- Lindsay Kimble

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TV Anchors Take Wary View of Trump Inauguration Speech

20 January 2017 12:27 PM, PST | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

From Fox News to CBS, a bevy of popular TV-news anchors expressed surprise and even discomfort after hearing President Donald J. Trump’s forceful inaugural speech on Friday.

Speaking on MSNBC, Rachel Maddow said the address was “militant” and “dark,” while Charlie Rose, holding forth on CBS noted, “I thought this speech was call to arms rather than an appeal for unity.” Anchors speaking on Fox News Channel engaged in discussion pronounced the address “radical,” and then proceeded to parse out what the new President really meant. “It was a dark, even pessimistic view of where we are at the moment,” said John King on CNN.

Trump’s address was a short and fiery, and aimed to evoke the populist sentiment that carried him into office. “January 20th, 2017, will be remembered as the day the people became the rulers of this nation again,” Trump said, adding, “From this day forward, it »

- Brian Steinberg

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Media Pundits Call Out President Trump for "Divisive," "Militant" and "Dark" Speech

20 January 2017 10:08 AM, PST | The Hollywood Reporter - TV News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - TV News news »

Chuck Todd, Rachel Maddow and Charlie Rose were among the media figures who had a few critiques of Donald Trump's Inauguration Day speech on Friday. On CBS, CNN and MSNBC, a number of hosts and pundits commented on the "dark" tone of the speech, criticizing Trump for not calling for unity in his first speech as president.

"I have to say, it was surprisingly divisive for an inaugural address," said Todd, adding that it was a challenge for Trump who was elected "as an outsider."  Todd added, "It is tough to be both a unifier and that populace »

- THR Staff

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