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‘Sopranos’ Prequel Film Finds Young Tony: Michael Gandolfini Is Chip Off Old Block

  • Deadline
‘Sopranos’ Prequel Film Finds Young Tony: Michael Gandolfini Is Chip Off Old Block
Exclusive: The Sopranos creator David Chase has found his Tony Soprano. Michael Gandolfini has been set to play the future New Jersey organized crime family boss in The Many Saints of Newark, the feature prequel to Chase’s groundbreaking TV series The Sopranos that Alan Taylor is directing for New Line.

He is the son of James Gandolfini, who originated the iconic role of Tony Soprano and won multiple Emmys, SAG Awards and a Golden Globe in an anti-hero role that made possible later bad guy turns like Bryan Cranston’s in Breaking Bad and future HBO series including Deadwood, Westworld and Game of Thrones. He died in 2013.

The late actor’s son has been gaining experience and had a breakout turn on the HBO drama series The Deuce. His resemblance to Tony Soprano is uncanny. The filmmakers engaged in an extensive audition process to find the young Tony before Gandolfini won the role.
See full article at Deadline »

AMC and Regal Ban ‘Roma’ From Playing During Oscar Best Picture Showcase Screenings

AMC and Regal Ban ‘Roma’ From Playing During Oscar Best Picture Showcase Screenings
Per tradition, AMC Theaters and Regal Cinemas will be screening this year’s nominees for Best Picture back-to-back as part of their annual Oscar showcases (Regal has its Best Picture Film Festival and AMC has its Best Picture Showcase). However, one nominee that will not be playing during these events is Alfonso Cuarón’s “Roma,” which tied with “The Favourite” for earning the most nominations this year. Among “Roma’s” 10 Oscar nominations are Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress, and Best Supporting Actress. Deadline reports AMC and Regal are barring “Roma” from their Best Picture showcases because it is a Netflix release.

In a statement commenting on the decision, AMC said, “For more than a decade, movie-lovers have enjoyed the AMC Best Picture Showcase to catch up on the nominated films that played at AMC throughout the prior year. This year, Academy members nominated a film that was never licensed
See full article at Indiewire »

‘American Son’ Set for Netflix Adaptation With Kerry Washington, Original Broadway Cast

‘American Son’ Set for Netflix Adaptation With Kerry Washington, Original Broadway Cast
The Broadway play “American Son” is set to be adapted for Netflix.

Kerry Washington, Steven Pasquale, Jeremy Jordan, and Eugene Lee will reprise their roles in the Netflix production. Kenny Leon returns to direct and produce, with Jeffrey Richards and Rebecca Gold serving as producers. Washington and Pilar Savone of Washington’s Simpson Street banner will produce.

Washington made the announcement Monday on “The Tonight Show.” Hailing from playwright Christopher Demos-Brown, the story centers on interracial parents who reunite in a Florida police station to search for answers about their missing teenage son. Production is slated to begin in February in New York.
See full article at Variety - TV News »

What Netflix’s Official MPAA Membership Means – Update

  • Deadline
What Netflix’s Official MPAA Membership Means – Update
Updated with Netflix officially joining: It’s official, Netflix is a member of the MPAA. The Washington, DC-based organization just dropped the following release:

The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has added Netflix as a new member of the global trade association that advocates on behalf of the film and television industry.

“On behalf of the MPAA and its member companies, I am delighted to welcome Netflix as a partner,” said MPAA Chairman and CEO Charles Rivkin. “All of our members are committed to pushing the film and television industry forward, in both how we tell stories and how we reach audiences. Adding Netflix will allow us to even more effectively advocate for the global community of creative storytellers, and I look forward to seeing what we can all achieve together.”

Netflix joins other leading producers of film and television content that make up the MPAA, including Disney, Paramount,
See full article at Deadline »

Kevin Barnett, Comedian and ‘Rel’ Co-Creator, Dies at 32

Kevin Barnett, a stand-up comedian and co-creator of Fox sitcom “Rel” has died. According to the New York Post, Barnett was 32.

“It it with a heavy heart we inform you of the passing of Kevin Barnett,” Last Podcast Network, which hosts Barnett’s “The Roundtable of Gentleman” show, wrote in a statement posted on its website Tuesday. “The joy he brought to our lives is the greatest gift we have ever received. Remind your friends you love them because you never know when you’ll see them again. We love you KB.”

The cause of death is not known at this time. Representatives for Barnett did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment.
See full article at The Wrap »

Oscars: ‘Black Panther’ Leads Best Picture Nominees to Near-Record Box Office Grosses

Oscars: ‘Black Panther’ Leads Best Picture Nominees to Near-Record Box Office Grosses
This year’s Academy Award nominees proved the Oscars don’t need a popular film category to recognize movies with huge box office grosses. The 2019 crop of best picture hopefuls have generated an impressive $1.26 billion so far in North America alone.

That bounty is led by “Black Panther,” which earned a sensational $700 million at the domestic box office. “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “A Star Is Born” both contributed in a big way with $202 million and $205 million, respectively in the States. “BlacKkKlansman,” “The Favourite,” “Green Book,” and “Vice” have combined for another $153 million. There is one glaring omission from this year’s best picture hopefuls — Netflix hasn’t reported any theatrical grosses for Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma.”

Even so, the current tally for the eight best picture nominees dwarfs the total from last year’s nine contenders, which carried the ignominious distinction as having the lowest grosses in six years. This year
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Kaye Ballard, Star of ‘The Mothers-in-Law,’ Dies at 93

  • Variety
Kaye Ballard, Star of ‘The Mothers-in-Law,’ Dies at 93
Singer-comedienne Kaye Ballard, who starred alongside Eve Arden in the 1960s sitcom “The Mothers-in-Law” and was among the stars of the 1976 feature based on Terrence McNally’s farce “The Ritz,” died Monday in Rancho Mirage, Calif. She was 93.

She had recently attended a screening of a documentary about her life, “Kaye Ballard: The Show Goes On,” at the Palm Springs Film Festival, according to the Desert Sun, and became ill soon after.

Ballard’s career spanned stage and screen, and she was a star on Broadway when she was paired with Arden as neighbors whose kids get married on “The Mothers-in-Law,” which ran on NBC from 1967-69 and later in syndication.

On the show Ballard played Katherine “Kaye” Josephina Buell, the overly emotional wife of Roger Buell (played by Roger C. Carmel) and overprotective mother of Jerry Buell (Jerry Fogel). She was an unenthusiastic housewife, frequently spoke in Italian, and
See full article at Variety »

‘Our Cartoon President’ Renewed for Season 2 at Showtime (Exclusive)

  • Variety
‘Our Cartoon President’ Renewed for Season 2 at Showtime (Exclusive)
Showtime has renewed the animated comedy “Our Cartoon President” for a second season, Variety has learned exclusively.

The 10-episode second season is slated to debut later this year. Stephen Colbert executive produces along with Chris Licht and showrunner R.J. Fried. Tim Luecke serves as lead animator and co-executive producer. Matt Lappin serves as consulting producer. The series is produced by CBS Television Studios.

The series offers a satirical look at a “normal day” inside the presidential administration of Donald Trump. In addition to Trump, administration officials like Betsy DeVos, Jared Kushner, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Mike Pence, and Ivanka Trump have all been parodied on the show in addition to many others.

The first season showed the cartoon president’s attempts at “winning” the State of the Union address, comforting disaster victims, rolling back President Obama’s accomplishments, and highlighted his relationship with the media

The show was originally picked up
See full article at Variety »

Amazon Launching ‘The Expanse’ Seasons 1-3 Worldwide Ahead of Season 4 Premiere

Amazon Launching ‘The Expanse’ Seasons 1-3 Worldwide Ahead of Season 4 Premiere
Amazon has acquired worldwide subscription-streaming rights to the first three seasons of “The Expanse,” the space thriller that originally aired on Syfy, leading up to Prime Video’s debut of season 4 later in 2019.

Seasons 1-2 of “The Expanse” are currently available in the U.S. on Prime Video. All three seasons, comprising 36 episodes in all, will become available on the service in over 200 countries and territories starting Feb. 8.

Amazon picked up the fourth season of “The Expanse” after NBCUniversal’s Syfy cancelled the show last year. Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, announced that deal in May 2018 at the
See full article at Variety - TV News »

‘The Daily Show': Ronny Chieng Disses ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ Oscars Snub, Sam Elliot’s Mustache (Video)

  • The Wrap
‘The Daily Show': Ronny Chieng Disses ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ Oscars Snub, Sam Elliot’s Mustache (Video)
In a fun gag on Tuesday’s “The Daily Show,” correspondent Ronny Chieng had some unkind words for the Best Supporting Actor Oscar nominees — mainly because he himself wasn’t nominated.

Plenty of fans were taken by surprise Tuesday morning when “Crazy Rich Asians” didn’t receive a single Oscar nomination, and so was Chieng, who played supporting character Eddie Cheng in the hit romantic comedy.

“Who gives a s— about Best Picture,” Chieng asked when he came out to discuss the matter with Trevor Noah. “The story this year is all about the deserving nominees who were snubbed…. especially in the only category that anyone actually cares about: Best Supporting Actor.”

Also Read: Oscar's Longest Losing Streaks: 12 People With 10-Plus Nominations and No Wins (Photos)

Chieng laid into the “no-name hacks” who were nominated, starting with Sam Elliott (“A Star Is Born”).

“Everyone in the business knows his mustache is doing all the acting.
See full article at The Wrap »

Chinese Celebrities Pay $1.7 Billion in Back Taxes Following Fan Bingbing Scandal

Chinese film and TV stars have paid some $1.7 billion (RMB11.7 billion) of additional taxes, following the mid-2018 scandal surrounding actress Fan Bingbing. The figure was announced Tuesday by China’s State Tax Administration.

Chinese authorities launched a probe into the taxation affairs of the entertainment sector in October. Companies and individuals were asked to examine and self correct their post-2016 tax affairs, by the end of December last year. Those that complied would be exempt from further penalties for tax evasion, the Tax Administration said.

In July last year, Fan was accused of hiding a proportion of her income on a film production through use of multiple contracts, only some of which would be declared to the tax authorities. It also emerged that she had set up companies in the regions in order to made use of lower tax regimes offered by some of China’s provinces.

In October, after
See full article at Variety - Film News »

HBO Asia and Catchplay Team up for ‘The World Between Us’

Pan-regional pay-tv group HBO Asia and Taiwan-based streaming video company Catchplay are to jointly distribute Taiwanese crime drama “The World Between Us.” The 10-part series will air from March.

Directed by award-winning filmmaker Lin Chun-Yang (“The Soul If Bread”) and written by the Lu Shih-Yuan (“Dear Ex”), “World” plunges into the aftermath of a mass shooting. The fate of the killer, the victims, the victims’ families, the media and the defense teams are all intertwined. Production is by Taiwanese broadcaster, Public Television Service (Pts).

The show features an all-star ensemble cast from Taiwan including Alyssa Chia, James Wen and Wu Kang-Jen.
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Edwin Birdsong, Keyboardist Sampled by Daft Punk, Gang Starr, Dead at 77

Edwin Birdsong, the jazz and funk keyboardist whose music has been sampled by artists like Daft Punk and Gang Starr, died Monday. He was 77. The musician’s son, Singh Birdsong, and his ex-wife, Angela Birdsong, confirmed his death on Instagram and Facebook, respectively.

Birdsong was an accomplished solo artist, as well as a prolific session musician and producer who worked with like Stevie Wonder and Roy Ayers. Years later, his music would be sampled by an array of artists, most notably Daft Punk, who tweaked Birdsong’s 1979 cut “Cola Bottle Baby” for their 2001 song,
See full article at Rolling Stone »

‘This Is Us': Milo Ventimiglia on Jack’s Decision to Hide Nicky After ‘Unspeakable’ Vietnam Twist

‘This Is Us': Milo Ventimiglia on Jack’s Decision to Hide Nicky After ‘Unspeakable’ Vietnam Twist
(Warning: This post contains spoilers for Tuesday’s episode of “This Is Us,” titled “Songbird Road: Part One”)

Last week, “This Is Us” fans found out Jack Pearson (Milo Ventimiglia) — America’s favorite dad and the world’s perfect husband — definitely lied to his family about the fact his little brother Nicky (played in the present day by Griffin Dunne and in the past timeline by Michael Angarano) did not die in Vietnam. And tonight, Kevin (Justin Hartley), Randall (Sterling K. Brown), and Kate (Chrissy Metz) go to find out why.

First off, Tuesday’s episode, titled “Songbird Road: Part One,” revealed what happened when viewers heard that off-screen explosion at the end of the midseason finale last November.

It turns out Nicky was “fishing” with a little Vietnamese boy by throwing grenades over the side of a small rowboat and when one landed inside the boat rather than in the water,
See full article at The Wrap »

‘This Is Us’ EPs on Big Three’s Introduction to Nicky, Rebecca’s Reaction to Jack’s ‘Pretty Major Lie’

‘This Is Us’ EPs on Big Three’s Introduction to Nicky, Rebecca’s Reaction to Jack’s ‘Pretty Major Lie’
(Warning: This post contains spoilers for Tuesday’s episode of “This Is Us,” titled, “Songbird Road: Part One.”)

This Is Us” offered up a seriously dark family reunion during Tuesday’s episode, “Songbird Road: Part One,” when the Big Three were introduced to their Uncle Nicky (played in the present by Griffin Dunne and in the past by Michael Angarano) — Jack’s younger brother who they definitely all thought died in Vietnam, because that’s what Jack told them their whole lives.

It turns out that explosion we heard at the end of the midseason finale in November was the result of Nicky “fishing” with a little Vietnamese boy, by throwing grenades over the side of a small rowboat. When one landed inside the boat rather than in the water, Jack’s little brother was unable to get the child out in time — but did dive out to save himself.
See full article at The Wrap »

‘This Is Us’ Star Milo Ventimiglia on Jack’s Post-Vietnam Lie: ‘Not Talking to His Brother Definitely Upset Me’

‘This Is Us’ Star Milo Ventimiglia on Jack’s Post-Vietnam Lie: ‘Not Talking to His Brother Definitely Upset Me’
Spoiler Alert: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Songbird Road, Part One,” the 11th episode of the third season of “This Is Us.”

This Is Us” patriarch Jack Pearson (Milo Ventimiglia) may have kept a big secret from his family — that his brother Nicky (Michael Angarano) did not actually die in the Vietnam War — but it turns out Nicky kept quite a secret from him, as well.

The boat explosion in Vietnam that caused Jack to dive in the water after his brother left Nicky unscathed physically, but because it claimed the life of a local boy,
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Natpe: Btf Media, Vince Gerardis Pact for Six Projects (Exclusive)

Miami — Btf Media, producer of breakout series “Hasta Que te Conocí” and “El Secreto de Selena,” is teaming with Vince Gerardis, a co-executive producer with George Martin on “Game of Thrones,” on a six-project co-production alliance.

Spearheaded at Btf Media by founder-partner Ricardo Coeto, the agreement takes in the development and co-production of the exclusive projects which the partners describe as having a “Latin-facing content.”

“This will be the beginning of a great relationship between Gerardis and Btf. We are very happy to announce this new venture for six titles, said Coeto who runs Btf Media with fellow founder Francisco Cordero.
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Nile Rodgers, Chic Offer Free Concert Tickets to Furloughed Government Workers

Nile Rodgers, Chic Offer Free Concert Tickets to Furloughed Government Workers
Nile Rodgers and Chic are giving away free tickets to their upcoming show in Washington D.C. to federal government employees that are either furloughed or working without pay during the ongoing government shutdown.

Chic are set to play the MGM National Harbor, just outside D.C., January 26th. The group has put aside 600 tickets for furloughed government workers, who can apply via a request form. The first 300 applicants will each receive two tickets to the show.

“Like many people, I’m frustrated by what’s happening and my heart
See full article at Rolling Stone »

Late-Night Hosts Weigh in on the 2019 Oscar Nominations

Late-Night Hosts Weigh in on the 2019 Oscar Nominations
Team Roma or The Favourite? Hours after Kumail Nanjiani and Tracee Ellis Ross announced the 2019 Academy Award nominees, late-night hosts weighed in on the anointed titles on their Tuesday night shows.

Favorites of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences this year included the aforementioned Roma and The Favourite, which led with 10 nods each, while A Star Is Born and Vice were also triumphant, earning eight nominations. Notable snubs included a lack of any nods for documentaries Won't You Be My Neighbor? and Three Identical Strangers, as well as fiction titles Crazy Rich Asians, Ben Is Back, Boy Erased, Eighth Grade, The Rider, Sorry to Bother ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »
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