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With Fox renewing The Exorcist for a second season, fans have more spiritual showdowns to look forward to when the series returns on September 29th. Previous reports have revealed that the Rance family will not be the focus in the second season, and new plot details reveal that Father Tomas and Marcus are indeed going to set their sights on a new location, with John Cho (Star Trek Beyond) joining the cast to play a character the duo will encounter on the West Coast.
Opening an entirely new chapter in the iconic franchise, Season Two of The Exorcist finds Father Tomas Ortega (Alfonso Herrera) and a newly collarless Marcus Keane (Ben Daniels) out of Chicago and on the road, searching out evil. »
- Derek Anderson
We still have a few blessed months before we’re bombarded with Christmas-themed advertising, but here’s some holiday news worth celebrating in June: Melissa McCarthy is set to topline and produce “Margie Claus,” a holiday musical she co-wrote. The Hollywood Reporter writes that New Line has picked up the comedy project.
The Oscar winner will play the title character, Santa Claus’ wife Margie. After Santa goes missing while delivering presents on Christmas Eve, Margie swings into action. She puts together a rescue team and ventures away from the North Pole — for the first time in decades — to save Santa and Christmas.
Described as a “broad holiday family musical that New Line hopes will be in the same spirit (and have the same success) as another company Christmas movie, ‘Elf,’” “Margie Claus” will be directed by McCarthy’s frequent collaborator — and husband — Ben Falcone.
The film is scheduled for release on November 15, 2019.
McCarthy received an Oscar nomination in 2012 for smash hit “Bridesmaids.” “The Heat,” “Identity Thief,” “Spy,” and “Tammy” are among her biggest box office successes. Her upcoming projects include college-set comedy “Life of the Party” with “Love’s” Gillian Jacobs, R-rated puppet comedy “The Happytime Murders,” and Marielle Heller’s follow-up to “The Diary of a Teenage Girl,” “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”
Melissa McCarthy to Star in Christmas Musical “Margie Claus” was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »
- Laura Berger
The New York Observer has laid off longtime film critic Rex Reed, in addition to several other members of its entertainment staff, in the latest cutbacks to the newspaper since owner Jared Kushner divested from the paper after the 2016 presidential election.
Reed was notified of the decision last week, he said, concluding a career at the paper that lasted more than 25 years. His last reviews, for “Alien: Covenant” and “Wakefield,” ran May 19. Reed’s editor at the Observer did not return a request for comment.
“The shocking truth is that the Observer has been going down the drain financially for quite some time,” Reed said via email, adding that he felt the future of the paper was thrown into doubt after investment banker Arthur Carter sold it to 25-year-old Kushner in 2006. The young mogul left the paper after his father-in-law, Donald J. Trump, was elected President of the United States last fall. »
- Eric Kohn
21 Jump Street has a lot to answer for. Now, I know big screen remakes of old t.v. shows are nothing new, but the success of Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s R-Rated, meta comedy, has given rise to a number of imitators who have grabbed the wrong end of the stick, thinking incredibly blue language and gross out humour is the way to go. The latest movie up to bat is Baywatch, a show that people only remember because of David Hasselhoff, Pamela Anderson, and that one joke from Friends. While you never call it a t.v. classic, the original show was cheesy, fun camp about lifeguards whose main skill was slow motion running, but director Seth Gordon (Identity Thief, Horrible Bosses) forgoes all that, upping the raunch and saddling it with generic R-Rated humour that never manages to hit the mark. Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron share the spotlight as Mitch Buchannon, »
- email@example.com (Tom White)
It’s hard to believe this is the same guy who made King of Kong – although entirely believable that it comes from the director of Horrible Bosses and Identity Thief. Seth Gordon’s retro reboot of the ‘90s sandy soap opera strives for look-at-how-dumb-things-were irony but just comes off as mean-spirited and juvenile. It’s more Carry On than 21 Jump Street.
The basic plot is straight out of a Baywatch episode, albeit stretched graphene-thin across two punishing hours. Led by Mitch (Dwayne Johnson) and his righthand woman, Stephanie (Ilfenesh Hadera), the Baywatch team are conducting trials at Emerald Bay. Three lucky contenders will get to join the squad and be trained as hero lifeguards.
Those in contention include the plucky Summer Quinn (Alexandra Daddario »
- Rupert Harvey
MaryAnn’s quick take… A beach-slap to anyone with a brain. Embodies everything that is wrong with Hollywood today. It is proudly dumb. It is proudly sexist. It is proudly pointless. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing
I’m “biast” (con): nothing
(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
These are the shoals upon which critics are broken. Those gently susurrating waves? The bastard power of water to wear everything down. Those lovely soft grains of sand on the beach? Every one of them a thoughtful film lover who has dedicated her- or himself to considering cinema, now ground down into a tiny tiny pebble.
Baywatch is a beach-slap fuck-you to anyone with a brain. Your gonads may be engaged if you are a heterosexual man (or a homosexual woman, though that will be accidental) who has not graduated from a tween sexuality in which disembodied boobs »
- MaryAnn Johanson
The schedule’s changed. More of the top summer releases go for early May, and given that many studio blockbusters must divide their loyalties between the international and domestic calendars, the last weekend of May has lost some of its appeal.
Holding the record for the biggest-ever opening on Memorial Day weekend is “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” in 2007. This the first “Pirates” in six years; is the audience still there? (We’ve seen the pessimistic take on that question with “Alien: Covenant,” which came five years after its last.)
- Tom Brueggemann
Baywatch was the most popular internationally syndicated TV series of the 1990s. And even though the drama about Southern California lifeguards often unfolded like self-parody — its appeal rested mainly on a swimsuit-clad Pamela Anderson running down the beach in slow motion and David Hasselhoff’s questionable emoting — it took itself as seriously as a show based on eye candy could.
This year’s movie version of Baywatch knows better than to do that. It’s consciously a comedy (the director, Seth Gordon, has given us Identity Thief, Horrible Bosses and TV’s The Goldbergs). And according to Zac Efron, one of the film’s stars, there are numerous other improvements.
“The movie has a little more to it,” Efron, 29, says during a chat on the Universal Studios backlot just outside Los Angeles. »
- Bob Strauss - Cineplex Magazine
Scott Lang’s misfit band of loveable criminals will be fully reunited in 2018’s Ant-Man and the Wasp, now that Blackfilm has confirmed that actor and rapper T.I. (otherwise known as Tip Harris) will be returning as Dave for the Ant-Man sequel.
The outlet spoke to T.I. at a New York event for the third season of NBC’s The Carmichael Show, where he nodded ‘yes’ when asked if he’d be involved in the sequel. Shooting on the project will reportedly start in less than two months at Atlanta’s Pinewood Studios; in 2014, Ant-Man became the first production to film at the location, and ever since, Marvel Studios has returned.
While opinions obviously differ, most would agree that Ant-Man is one of the funnier Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, »
- Justin Cook
“Baywatch,” starring Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron, is a stupidly entertaining trash folly, the kind that could only be made today: an obscenity-and-insult-laced, aggressively “competent” adaptation of a 25-year-old TV show that manages to repackage every aspect of the series except, perhaps, the reason it was popular in the first place. And what was that reason? If Rodney Dangerfield were around, he might say, “There were two reasons!” But actually there’s a bit more to it.
“Baywatch,” which premiered at the tail-end of the 1980s (and stumbled out of the gate, becoming a hit in syndication the way “Star Trek” did), was a muscle-beach soap opera that anticipated the sexy-youth-kitsch-for-adults appeal of “Beverly Hills 90210.” It was also an L.A. crime series where the law enforcers wore spandex swimwear; a cheeseball star vehicle that revamped the camp-stud Ken-doll mystique of the former “Knight Rider” hero David Hasselhoff; and, yes, »
- Owen Gleiberman
TBS has announced that Tracy Morgan’s new comedy series is going by the title The Last O.G., and will see him starring alongside Cedric the Entertainer (The Soul Man), Tiffany Haddish (Keanu), Allen Maldonado (The Equalizer), Ryan Gaul (Identity Thief), Taylor Mosby (Criminal Minds) and Dante Hoagland (The New Edition Story).
Created by Jordan Peele and John Carcieri, The Last O.G. sees Morgan as Tray, “an ex-con who is shocked to see just how much the world has changed when he is released on good behavior from a 15-year prison stint. Returning to his newly gentrified Brooklyn neighborhood, he discovers that his former girlfriend, Shay (Haddish), has married an affable, successful white man who is helping raise Tray’s twin sons who he never knew existed. Wanting nothing more than to connect with his kids, but having neither the money to support them nor himself, Tray falls »
- Gary Collinson
The film, about a group of hired killers who are trying to get rid of the world’s top hit man, is directed by Taran Killam. Currently in post-production, it is produced by Killam, Kim Leadford, Ash Sarohia and Steve Squillante, and financed by StarStream Media.
“This is a hilarious movie that left me in stitches. Everyone is perfectly cast and none more so than Arnold Schwarzengger,” said Bliss’ Wei Han. “We will make sure the movie gets the perfect distribution and marketing platform it deserves in China.”
With offices in Shanghai and Los Angeles, »
- Patrick Frater
After years in development, it looks like viewers will finally get to see a darkly comedic take on the world of puppets in The Happytime Murders. Taking place in a world where puppets and humans live together, the film will feature a grisly murder mystery that must be solved by a pair of detectives, one human and one puppet. The movie is now finally moving forward with Melissa McCarthy set to star and produce, Brian Henson (son of the legendary Jim Henson) on board as the director, and filming expected to begin this August.
Press Release: (Burbank, CA, May 2, 2017) — STXfilms, whose Bad Moms was 2016’s highest grossing R-rated comedy, teams with comedic genius Melissa McCarthy in The Happytime Murders, directed by Brian Henson. The announcement was made today by STXfilms Chairman Adam Fogelson and Sam Brown, President of Production for STXfilms, a division of Stx Entertainment.
The comedy is set »
- Derek Anderson
The path to comedy stardom is normally: 1) have a breakout role, 2) become wildly overexposed by signing up to every role going, and 3) see increasingly diminishing returns to your star vehicles. But Melissa McCarthy has so far defied those expectations. Since exploding with her Oscar-nominated turn in “Bridesmaids” six years ago, McCarthy’s box-office record has been stellar, helping to turn films like “Identity Thief” and “Spy” into smashes, and even making modest successes of lower-concept projects like “The Boss” and “Tammy,” films where the only real marketing hook was ‘Melissa McCarthy is in this movie.’
It’s telling that perhaps her biggest disappointment so far, “Ghostbusters,” still made $128 million domestically.
- Oliver Lyttelton
Ghostbusters star Melissa McCarthy has a new comedy in the works. Coming from STXfilms, she has taken the lead role of Brian Henson’s comedy The Happytime Murders, a film which sees a world where humans and puppets coexist with each other.
The film takes place in Los Angeles where McCarthy plays a detective who is forced to work with a puppet detective on a high-profile case. Someone has been murdering the cast of ‘The Happytime Gang’, a beloved puppet show, and its up to them to find the killer.
“Melissa McCarthy is the reigning queen of comedy and we believe she will make The Happytime Murders the kind of hysterical, edgy, viral event that audiences today crave,” said STXfilms Chairman Adam Fogelson. “This is the kind of script and material that was made for Melissa’s smart and boundary-pushing sensibilities. Having worked with her years ago on Bridesmaids and Identity Thief, »
- Ricky Church
The comedy, directed by Brian Henson, is set in the underbelly of Los Angeles where puppets and humans coexist. Two clashing detectives, one human and one puppet, are forced to work together to try and solve the mystery of who is brutally murdering the former cast of “The Happytime Gang,” a beloved classic puppet show.
“When a really good script combines puppet strippers, Los Angeles’ underbelly, and comedy, it’s like my fever dream has finally come true,” McCarthy said in a press release.
The film is set to begin production this August and will be produced by The Jim Henson Company’s Henson Alternative banner, On the Day Productions, and STXfilms. Producers are Brian Henson, Jeffrey Hayes, McCarthy, and Ben Falcone. Lisa Henson »
- Dave McNary
Comedy takes place in world where humans and puppets co-exist.
Two detectives – one from each species – must work together to solve the slaying of a former cast member on beloved puppet show The Happytime Gang.
The project hails from The Jim Henson Company’s Henson Alternative label, On The Day Productions, and Stx films. Brian Henson will direct and produces alongside Jeffrey Hayes, McCarthy and Falcone. Lisa Henson and John W. Hyde will serve as executive producers.
Todd Berger wrote the screenplay from a story he co-created with Dee Robertson.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeremy Kay)
At this point, Chris Pratt is essentially sitting at the very top of the Hollywood tree. Having successfully shed his Parks And Recreation character, the actor now has his fingers in many blockbuster pies. He’s currently working on Jurassic World 2, having seen the first Jurassic World take the box office by storm in 2015; he voiced the character of Emmet Brickowski in The Lego Movie, which means he’ll undoubtedly continue to have an endless stream of sequel opportunities, and he’s the lead in the Guardians Of The Galaxy franchise, forming part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe – which means he also gets to be in the next Avengers films, too. He really just needs a Star Wars movie and he’ll have the set. But, he’s aiming to create a franchise of his own, now. That project comes in the form of Cowboy Ninja Viking, and it’s definitely still happening. »
- Sarah Myles
Imagine if Pulp Fiction’s Jules Winnfield got older, and grumpier, and had to get to a specific location while under fire from potential assassins. Then imagine that any pre-Deadpool Ryan Reynolds character had to get him there. That’s basically what we have in The Hitman’s Bodyguard and, to great surprise, it looks to be exactly the film you’ll need to give your summer a boost.
Directed by Patrick Hughes (The Expendables 3), The Hitman’s Bodyguard is the second script from Tom O’Connor (Fire With Fire), and boasts a wider cast that includes Salma Hayek, Elodie Yung (Daredevil), Gary Oldman, and Joaquim de Almeida (Our Brand Is Crisis). The premise is simple – the world’s greatest hitman (Samuel L. Jackson) needs to get to the International Court Of Justice alive, and the world’s greatest bodyguard (Ryan Reynolds) has to get him there. Complications »
- Sarah Myles
Melissa McCarthy’s filmography includes roles such as a ghost-catcher, spy, and cop, so it comes as no surprise that the Oscar-nominated actress will be honored with the Powerhouse award by the Artemis Women in Action Film Festival. Variety broke the news.
“Melissa has epitomized female action heroes in countless films,” the festival commented. “She has always embraced characters who are physically empowered — even when they make us laugh.”
“Our film festival seeks to redefine the image of women, not just on screen, but in culture as well,” emphasized Melanie Wise, the festival’s founder. “Our official hashtag is #womenkickass, and we try to convey that sensibility in everything that we do.”
McCarthy will be presented with the honor on the fest’s opening night, April 20. Other women set to be honored at the third edition of the fest include McCarthy’s stuntwoman Luci Romberg, actress Nichelle Nichols (“Star Trek”), and former Mma star and actress Gina Carano (“Deadpool”).
McCarthy received an Oscar nomination in 2012 for her role in “Bridesmaids.” Her upcoming projects include Marielle Heller’s dark comedy “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” and the college-set comedy “Life of the Party.” She co-wrote the latter film, which co-stars “Love’s” Gillian Jacobs.
Check out our guest post explaining why McCarthy offers a better return on investment than Tom Cruise, one of the best-known action stars of all-time.
Artemis Women in Action Film Festival runs from April 20–23 in La.
Melissa McCarthy to Be Honored at Artemis Women in Action Film Fest was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »
- Laura Berger
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