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Welcome back to the Weekend Warrior, your weekly look at the new movies hitting theaters this weekend, as well as other cool events and things to check out.
This Past Weekend:
While the new movies reigned at the box office this past weekend, both Antoine Fuqua’s The Magnificent Seven (Sony) and the animated Storks (Warner Bros.) didn’t fare nearly as well as our projections, both falling short by about $10 million. The Magnificent Seven, starring Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt, fared decently with $34.7million, which is about the average for Washington’s films, but the fourth highest opening for a Western after last year’s The Revenant, the animated Rango, and Cowboys and Aliens. Storks’ $21.3 million opening wasn’t great compared to other animated September releases with Sony still holding the September opening record with Hotel Transylvania 2, but it should continue to do well with no other animated movies opening for another month. »
- Edward Douglas
Storks takes the old myth of storks delivering babies as a starting point for an animated action/adventure comedy, where the storks have gone corporate and gotten out of the baby delivery business. Now, storks deliver merchandise for Cornerstore.com, a giant Amazon-like internet retailer, because now there are so many options if you want a baby. Or at least they thought they were out of the baby business, until a little boy uses an old form to place an order for a baby brother- an order that would never have been filled except for a glitch in the system that activates the long-shuttered Baby Factory.
A baby is in no way part of the company’s new business model, so an ambitious, efficient stork named Junior (Andy Samberg), who is in line to become the next CEO, has to deal with the problem – and quickly, before his boss Hunter »
- Cate Marquis
It's the most wonderful time of year: Fall TV season. Our favorite shows are all returning, plus a whole new crop of hopeful pilots. Some are better than others, but hey, there's something for everyone! Before you get attached to what you will and won't be watching, here's what you need to know about one of Fox's new offerings, a sports drama named Pitch! 1. The Cast Kylie Bunbury is starring as Ginny Baker, the first woman to play Major League Baseball. You may recognize her as Dawn from Under the Dome or Lacey from Twisted. Perennial sexy person Mark-Paul Gosselaar is playing teammate Mike Lawson, and Ali Larter is Amelia Slater, her PR guru. 2. The Plot Ginny has been a baseball whiz ever since she picked up the ball that her brother threw down. Her father fosters her talent until she lands in the Major Leagues, but despite her success, »
- Maggie Pehanick
If only a show could believe in the shtick it has, and not decide that it not only needs two, but needs one to be a clever twist. Pitch has enough going on without throwing out a last-minute zinger. Worse, the show doesn’t need it, it doesn’t help anything, and it runs the risk of leaving a bad taste in your mouth. I’m tempted to tell you the point at which you should stop watching, and await the next episode.
As I said, Pitch has enough going on, and somewhat surprisingly, what with the overblown cliches that are tricky to avoid, it’s a refreshing joyride. It may seem like damning with faint praise, but the show’s best attribute is just that it adeptly dodges turning into something laughable. That isn’t because it’s doing anything wrong, but because the subject matter simply means that »
- Marc Eastman
“Storks,” the new digital cartoon about a crew of sharp-beaked, flamingo-legged birds who deliver babies (or used to; they now deliver consumer packages — but we’ll get to that in a minute), is a strenuously unfunny animated comedy. These days, that’s a relatively rare bird to encounter, since animated filmmaking right now tends to hit certain baseline slick levels of amiable generic cleverness. In “Storks,” the jokes fall flat, but the pace is relentless, and those two things seem somehow intertwined, as if the filmmakers had convinced themselves that comedy that whips by fast enough won’t go thud. Even if you watch “Storks” and think, four-year-olds will really dig it (and perhaps they will), frenetic and witless is not a great combination. At least, not for anyone over four. The movie will probably enjoy a respectable opening weekend, but after that the situation looks dicier. In the animated marketplace, »
- Owen Gleiberman
The cast of black-ish filmed their third season premiere at Walt Disney World in August - "our big family vacation episode" as executive producer Jonathan Groff describes it - but one star is already a Disney Mvp. Jenifer Lewis, who plays outspoken Grandma Ruby on the ABC hit sitcom, also voices the role of Flo in the Cars movies. And she stole scenes in 2009's The Princess and the Frog as wise Mama Odie.(Lewis, 59, is a former Broadway performer with powerhouse pipes - for proof, watch the clip above!) Shooting at the Florida theme park gave the cast new »
- Michelle Tauber, @michelletauber
FilmNation will fully finance, produce and handle international sales for the film while Wme handles U.S. rights. Temple Hill’s Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey, whose credits include “The Fault in Our Stars” and the Maze Runner franchise, will produce with FilmNation.
The story is a multi-generational love story, weaving together a number of characters whose lives intersect over the course of decades from the streets of New York to the Spanish countryside and back. Producers are currently casting but no actors have been attached.
- Dave McNary
Chicago – After he reigned as the father in the classic 1979 film “Breaking Away,” actor Paul Dooley suddenly became everyone’s Dad – and by everyone that meant Molly Ringwald (“Sixteen Candles”), Julia Roberts (“Runaway Bride”) and Helen Hunt (“Mad About You”). He tells all in Part Two of a comprehensive interview.
The former “Paul Brown’ was born in West Virginia, and studied acting at West Virginia University, before heading to New York City and a new career as Paul Dooley. He did stage work, stand-up comedy and the New York City version of The Second City. He got his big break in the original stage version of “The Odd Couple” in 1965, directed by the legendary Mike Nichols. While working the stage, he appeared in a number of commercials, eventually moving to Los Angeles to “be where the action is.”
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Chicago – If there ever was a quintessential “Dad” in movies of the last generation, it would have to be Paul Dooley. The comedian and character actor is best known for portraying the patriarch in “Breaking Away” (1979) and “Sixteen Candles” (1984), but was also in director’s Robert Altman’s ‘ensemble’ and has had a stellar career.
The former “Paul Brown” was born in West Virginia, and studied acting at West Virginia University, before heading to New York City and a new career as Paul Dooley. He did stage work, stand-up comedy and the New York City version of The Second City (story below), before getting his big break in the original stage version of “The Odd Couple” in 1965, directed by the legendary Mike Nichols. While working the stage, he appeared in a number of commercials, eventually moving to Los Angeles to “be where the action is.”
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
BBC America series will see presenter get behind the wheel of the ‘newest, fastest and coolest cars on the road’
Harris, a motoring journalist and presenter who was one of Evans’ first hires when he took over Top Gear from Jeremy Clarkson, will front a new show called Chris Harris on Cars, based on his popular YouTube series.
Continue reading »
- John Plunkett and Mark Sweney
Andrew Stanton’s Finding Dory has jump-started a string of Pixar sequels that will welcome moviegoers back to the worlds of Toy Story, Cars and The Incredibles through 2019. But beyond that, the animation wizards have plans in place for four original movies, which ought to offset any cries of sequelitis.
That’s according to Pixar President Jim Morris, who told Entertainment Weekly that the studio’s blueprint has and always will place originality first; but there are times when a key creator such as Andrew Stanton (Dory) or Brad Bird (Incredibles) pitches an idea worthy of a sequel.
“Our plan had been to make an original every year and a sequel every other year, if the idea came forth to do it,” says Morris. “If we add the next films after the current ones, it actually comes out to exactly that: seven sequels in a spate of 21 originals, from the »
- Michael Briers
I am too big a fan of Pixar to be reasonably objective at this point. On this very website I wrote a rave review of The Good Dinosaur, a movie I seem to be almost completely alone on the island of people who think that was an unqualified masterpiece. I’ve given more than one passionate defense of Cars as a well-intentioned movie with a nice message about the virtue of small town America. I’m even polite enough to pretend that Cars 2 never existed. I’m a Pixar team player all the way. But I’m just not sure I’m a big fan of Finding Dory.
It’s not a bad movie, that’s not what’s wrong here, not by a long shot. It’s funny, it’s momentarily very moving, and the design work is exciting and dynamic. What it doesn’t feel is particularly original. »
- Arthur Tebbel
Wouldn’t it be amazing to travel by private jet, skipping all of those airport lines, or to have a collection of fancy sports cars? Well, while most of us can keep dreaming, those are just two of the high-class ways our favorite celebrities get around.
As they all flit off on fabulous summer vacations, we may catch a peak at some of these seven beauties shuttling down the runway or pulling up to the fanciest hotel in town.
On The Sporty Side
Sports cars are the bread and butter transport – they all own a few, filling out multi-car garages attached to Beverly Hills’ homes. But anyone can buy a Fiat or a Ferrari off the lot, so how special could these speedsters really be? Well, if you’re talking about Jay-z’s Maybach Exelero, the answer is very special. Price at a sweet $8 million, the car is entirely one »
- Jennifer Gretson
“Finding Dory” shattered box office records this weekend, setting a new high-water mark for an animated film debut with its $136.2 million opening.
The sequel to 2003’s “Finding Nemo” succeeded where many followups this summer have failed, nearly doubling the original film’s $70.2 million launch. Its impressive results come amidst fears that the movie business is suffering from “sequelitis,” as one by one spinoffs and fresh installments such as “Alice Through the Looking Glass” and “X-Men: Apocalypse” sputter at the box office.
Here are five reasons that Disney and Pixar were able to make a big splash with “Finding Dory.”
1.) Pixar is the Movie Business’ Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval
Over the course of 17 films, Pixar has established a reputation for excellence that is nearly unparalleled. Perhaps only Miramax during its ’90s heyday rivals the Pixar association with quality films, and its run of “Pulp Fiction,” “The English Patient” and “The Crying Game »
- Brent Lang
In what may be the most adorable animated short yet, Piper is a simple, heartwarming story. There is such attention to detail when looking at the ruffled feathers of our titular character. Growing up takes courage, and we watch this little guy discover how to feed himself. It's difficult to say more without robbing you of a reason to watch, but try hard to fight the urge to say "aww" out loud. But, don't hold it against yourself if one sneaks out.
Synopsis: Written and directed by Andrew Stanton, Dory (Ellen DeGeneres) is a wide-eyed, blue tang fish who suffers from memory loss every 10 seconds or so. The one thing she can remember is that she somehow became separated from her parents as a child. With help from her friends Nemo and Marlin, »
- Tyler Richardson
Pixar films are known for their sublime character voices — just look at Tom Hanks in “Toy Story” or Paul Newman in “Cars.” But as the title heroine in “Finding Dory,” Ellen DeGeneres goes to even greater acting depths to channel a memory-challenged Blue Tang fish. It’s a portrait that’s far more nuanced than her turn as a lovable sidekick in the original 2003 movie “Finding Nemo.” In the sequel, as Dory’s childhood recollections slowly return, DeGeneres combines the kind of slapstick lines that would make “Aladdin’s” Genie jealous with heartbreaking drama (a la “Still Alice” under the sea). Even though we never see DeGeneres’ face, it could still be called one of her strongest performances, and one that audiences won’t soon forget.
But don’t expect her to get any awards recognition at the end of the year. That’s because Oscars have never once nominated »
- Ramin Setoodeh
Anyone who watched The Good Wife will be willing to indulge Robert and Michelle King, that now-retired show's creators, as they launch their conceptually bizarre new summer series on CBS. BrainDead - even the inelegant title probably won't put off Good Wife fans - is a satire of Washington politics based on a horror premise borrowed from Invasion of the Body Snatchers. But at a certain point in the premiere you may decide that this isn't going to work. In my case, that point arrives when Tony Shalhoub, playing Senator Red Wheatus, tilts his head to the side and seems »
- Tom Gliatto, @gliattoT
Out talking up this coming weekend's launch of "Finding Dory" at the film's premiere, Pixar's Cco John Lassetter has also spoken about the next film in the "Cars" film series which sees Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) return to cinemas next Summer.
While the second film took on a spy thriller feel, Lassetter tells EW that the third focuses heavily on McQueen's past relationship with Doc Hudson (Paul Newman), his mentor from the original film:
"We've got some great new characters, some great racing in it. It's a very emotional story. It's a little bit more akin to Cars 1, where you get into a deep emotion with him. It's really a special story. It's very emotional and his relationship with Doc Hudson, and his memory of Doc Hudson."
The film will also reportedly show McQueen trying to adapt to the world of racing, as bigger, faster, and younger cars begin to dominate the sport. A yellow car named Cruz Ramirez starts to train McQueen – a central relationship in the sequel.
"Cars 3" opens in cinemas June 16th 2017. »
- Garth Franklin
Over the past two decades, Pixar has left an indelible mark on film history. At its peak, it was hitting home run after home run, creating classic films with memorable characters. Now they are returning to their past glory with sequels to films like “Finding Dory” and “The Incredibles,” which leads us to ask: who is Pixar’s greatest character? Read on to find out who we picked. 39.) Fillmore — A bit character in “Cars” elevated by George Carlin, who brought back his famous hippie routine one last time to play the character. 38.) Anger — Sometimes, typecasting can do wonders »
- Jeremy Fuster
“Finding Dory,” the ingeniously pleasing sequel to “Finding Nemo,” opens with a scene that merges our affection for a beloved character with a bit of a jolt. We see Dory, the friendly blue tang fish from the first film, back when she was a big-eyed toddler with a babyish gurgle, getting trained by her parents, Charlie (Eugene Levy) and Jenny (Diane Keaton), to tell a stranger (any stranger), “I suffer from short-term memory loss.” The thing is, poor Dory really does — she can’t even remember the phrase! It’s no wonder that her parents are aghast with anxiety. In a flash, a character with a singular and beguilingly funny trait — the inability to remember almost anything for more than 10 seconds — comes at us in a whole new way. She’s no longer a daffy amnesiac. She’s a child fish with a serious disability.
Have the creators of “Finding Dory »
- Owen Gleiberman
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