16 items from 2015
“Annie Hall” has been named the funniest screenplay in voting by the members of the Writers Guild of America.
The script by Woody Allen and Marshall Brickman topped “Some Like it Hot,” “Groundhog Day,” “Airplane!” and “Tootsie,” which make up the rest of the top five. “Young Frankenstein,” “Dr. Strangelove,” “Blazing Saddles,” “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” and “National Lampoon’s Animal House” rounded out the top 10.
The awards for the 101 funniest screenplays were announced at the Arclight Cinerama Dome in Hollywood at the conclusion of two hours of panel discussions and clips, hosted by Rob Reiner. He noted that his “This Is Spinal Tap” script had finished at the No. 11 spot — a coincidence that recalled the “go to 11” amplifier joke in the film.
- Dave McNary
Over the weekend, Spectre, the fourth James Bond film in the Daniel Craig era of the legendary spy franchise, earned the top spot at the box office with a $70 million bow, making it the second highest grossing film in the series just behind 2012’s Skyfall (which earned $88 million in its opening weekend).
Despite its success with audiences, the Spectre has been less well received by critics, with a 63% on review aggregate site, Rotten Tomatoes (by contrast, Skyfall holds a 93%). Yet, the film may still earn nominations from the Academy, as many previous Bond films have done. In fact, eight of the 23 films in the franchise that has spanned the course of five decades.
Here’s a look back at how previous 007 films have fared with Oscar and what that history may mean for Spectre:
Skyfall was not only the most successful outing Bond had at the box office, »
- Patrick Shanley
We’ve got questions, and you’ve (maybe) got answers! With another week of TV gone by, we’re lobbing queries left and right about shows including Gotham, The Flash, American Horror Story: Hotel and Sleepy Hollow!
1 | Did Hawaii Five-0‘s reveal that Catherine is actually off of some super-secret mission soothe the sting of her jilting Steve, at all?
2 | What’s the consensus, Fear the Walking Dead fans — was the seaweed at the end of the finale toxic, or did it just happen to float into the shot? And is anyone not assuming that the plane we saw in “The Dog” is the web »
Brand: A Second Coming, 2015
Directed by Ondi Timoner
Starring Russell Brand
Brand – A Second Coming follows comedian Russell Brand’s spiritual journey from addict and Hollywood star to self-proclaimed revolutionary and explores our relationship to the consumerism and individualism that drives our society and distracts us at a time when it’s vital for all of us to wake up and take action.
If ever a public figure who was the epitome of “marmite”, someone so divisive that they split the opinion in two, then Russell Brand is probably such a figure. Ever since he burst onto the scene in the early 2000’s, gracing the stand-up circuit in and around London, Brand has been synonymous with mischief and rascality, using his own personal dramas and embarrassments (some shown in-depth here) to bring humour to the masses. For many he was an overly-confident sex tornado who blew through the world »
- Scott J. Davis
The well-liked Brezner entered the hospital for treatment in July after he was diagnosed with the disease, according to longtime business partner David Steinberg.
Brezner played a key role in developing the careers of Billy Crystal, Robin Williams, Martin Short and Bette Midler and was credited with working effectively behind the scenes to set up movie projects. He produced Crystal’s “Throw Momma From the Train” and Williams’ “Good Morning, Vietnam” along with “The Burbs,” “The Vanishing,” “Freddie Got Fingered,” “Coupe de Ville,” “The Greatest Game Ever Played,” the Russell Brand remake of “Arthur” and “Ride Along.”
“He had a great eye for comedy talent and was the funniest person I ever met,” Steinberg said. “He was truly one of a kind. »
- Dave McNary
Can you believe it's been seven years since Colin Morgan's boy wizard first strode onto our screens?
The series premiere of Merlin on September 20, 2008 set us off on a magical five-year journey - one with mythical monsters, wicked warlocks and excessive amounts of bromantic banter.
Millions tuned in each Saturday night for the show's blend of fun, fantasy and friendship - because Merlin and Arthur (Bradley James) were definitely just friends, Ok? - but what's happened to Camelot's finest since that epic final episode?
The aged Emrys might still be waiting for King Arthur to revive, but Merlin lead Colin Morgan hasn't lain dormant these past few years. He appeared opposite fellow Irish legend Gabriel Byrne in BBC One's moody detective drama Quirke in 2014, was seduced by Gillian Anderson as mercurial copper Tom Anderson in The Fall and played cyborg Leo in Channel 4's smash hit Humans. »
Project Name: Burp Girl
Asking For: $35,000 on Indiegogo
Amount Raised Thus Far (At Time Of Post): $3,645
Days Remaining In Campaign (At Time Of Post): 22
Description: Burp Girl is seeking funds to tell the eight-episode story of the titular female superhero who defeats villains through her ultimate superpower: burping. She’s joined by a host of other crazy characters who also have repulsive powers and titles, like Fire Crotch, Dandruff, Fatman, Nose Picker, The Urinator, and Upchuck. Burp Girl already has a pilot episode, thanks to Stan Lee’s Pow! Entertainment and YouTube Space La’s “World of Superheroes” contest from earlier this year.
Creator Bio: Burp Girl creator, director, and star Christina Jacquelyn Calph is the brains behind the comedy YouTube channel Bad Girl’s Ball. Calph originally started acting in New York City and landed roles in feature films like Arthur (with Russell Brand and Helen Mirren »
- Bree Brouwer
Chicago – Greta Gerwig’s persona as a character actress has blossomed in the last three years, as she has taken on three women in their twenties at the crossroads of life, in that life decade of consequence. In addition to her title roles in “Lola Versus” and “Francis Ha,” her latest is “Mistress America,” which she also co-wrote.
Directed by Noah Baumbach, the film is essentially a buddy comedy, if the buddies are two women – one a Freshman in college and aspiring writer named Tracy (Lola Kirke), and the other (Gerwig) a overwrought urban survivalist named Brooke – living with uncertainty, guile and pomposity in New York City. Like the Greta Gerwig characters of Lola and Francis, Brooke is an achiever in a different way, as they all learn to understand what their purpose is, when challenged with life altering change that is not necessarily what they wanted.
Greta Gerwig and »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
A never-before-seen member of the Rizzoli & Isles family will finally make his debut this summer.
Arthur is the only one of Maura’s parents not yet seen on the show; John Doman and Sharon Lawrence have previously appeared as Maura’s biological parents, and Jacqueline Bisset has guest-starred as her adoptive mother, Constance.
Box office winner and Golden Globe nominee Will Ferrell (Get Hard, Anchorman 1 and 2) will star in the comedy Tom’S Dad to be directed by Oscar nominated director Lasse Hallström (The Cider House Rules, The Hundred-foot Journey).
Principal photography on the feature film is slated to begin early next year, with further casting underway.
Set in 1960s Nevada, Arthur (Ferrell) is a struggling nightclub performer hoping to make it big with his stage act involving circus animals. He is forced to reconnect with his estranged 12-year old son, Tom, when his ex-wife departs on a three week trip, leaving the pair to rekindle their father-son relationship.
It was announced today by producers Joni Levin and Keith Clarke (The Way Back, upcoming Ben Hur) of Point Blank Productions, Christi Dembrowski and Johnny Depp of Infinitum Nihil (Hugo, Rum Diary, Dark Shadows) and Arsenal’s John Ptak (Let Me In, »
- Michelle McCue
Will Ferrell has added a new comedy movie to his name.
The Hollywood funnyman will star in Lasse Hallström's Tom's Dad, reports Deadline.
Set in 1960s Nevada, Ferrell plays nightclub performer Arthur who hopes to make it big with his stage act involving circus animals, but he is forced to rekindle his relationship with his estranged 12-year-old son after his ex-wife leaves for a three-week trip.
The Spoils Before Dying will air on three consecutive nights beginning Wednesday, July 8 at 9pm Et
Watch a red band trailer for Get Hard below: »
Love him or hate him, there’s no ignoring Russell Brand. The louche, shaggy-haired, former druggie/current author/actor/raconteur made his first impression with the American public as the fabulously named Aldous Snow in Nicholas Stoller’s “Forgetting Sarah Marshall.” A slew of film roles followed, some promising, others less so (“Arthur,” anyone?). In the last couple of years, however, Brand has consciously moved away from the bad-boy image that defined his early career trajectory, moving towards a very public sort of political activism. In 2013, for instance, Brand encouraged British citizens to not vote and called for a “massive re-distribution of wealth,” although he was a bit hazy on exactly what that meant. He published a book titled "Revolution," and now Brand, ever the firestarter, has teamed up with director Michael Winterbottom (“24 Hour Party People,” “The Trip”) for “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” an incendiary comic documentary that looks »
- Nicholas Laskin
Some movie remakes and reboots are actually good , but many are cringeworthy—and Radar runs down 20 of the worst offenders: The 2011 remake of Arthur was called a "career killer" for leading man Russell Brand—especially bad news since it was Brand's first film in the lead role. The 2004 remake of Alfie , starring Jude Law in the lead, cost $60 million to make ... and grossed just $35 million at the worldwide box office. The film version of The A-Team performed so poorly with both critics and audiences that a seemingly inevitable sequel never came about. Even star Liam »
- Evann Gastaldo
Russell Brand created some high-profile drama at the last minute by choosing not to attend the world premiere of Ondi Timoner’s documentary about him (or give his scheduled keynote speech) at SXSW — probably getting more press than he would have by showing up as planned. The suspicion that this might be a clever ruse is underlined by “Brand: A Second Coming” itself, which, despite the subject’s excuses that it was too revealingly “uncomfortable” for his stomach, reveals little that many fans and detractors don’t already know. It’s also quite a flattering, as well as entertaining and (natch) funny, portrait of a comic talent remaking himself from pop-tart celebrity to (still funny) political commentator/agitator. Brand’s large, loyal constituency should eat this up in various formats; it won’t alter the opinions of those who don’t like him, but then they’re unlikely to be queueing up anyway. »
- Dennis Harvey
The 87th Academy Award nominations for 2015 were recently released on January 15, 2015 representing the excellence in film for the previous year. Naturally there was the standard controversy regarding those films and performances that got unfairly overlooked. Unfortunately, the perceived snubs do happen from year to year so this goes along with the territory. Nevertheless, the lucky selections that do manage to grab Oscar’s attention are understandably grateful and psyched to see if the golden statuette will in fact go home with them on the film industry’s biggest and most elegant evening.
With the obvious crankiness of Oscar omissions aside and the injustices that go with these “reel” deals has anyone ever considered the Academy Award nominees that are surprisingly recognized that could have gone unnoticed for whatever reasoning? After all there are films and exceptional performances that get lost in the shuffle but manage to get the accolades it »
- Frank Ochieng
16 items from 2015
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