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FX’s "Fosse/Verdon" Sets Main Cast; Norbert Leo Butz, Margaret Qualley Join as Series Regulars

  • Variety
FX has set the main cast for the eight-episode limited series “Fosse/Verdon,” Variety has learned.

The series is based on the biography “Fosse” written by Sam Wasson and tells the story of the romantic and creative partnership between Bob Fosse (Sam Rockwell) and Gwen Verdon (Michelle Williams).

Norbert Leo Butz has been cast in the series regular role of Paddy Chayefsky, while Margaret Qually will appear in the series regular role of Ann Reinking.

In addition, the following people have been cast in recurring roles: Aya Cash as Joan Simon, Nate Corddry as Neil Simon, Susan Misner as Joan McCracken, Bianca Marroquin as Chita Rivera, Kelli Barrett as Liza Minnelli, Evan Handler as Hal Prince, Rick Holmes as Fred Weaver, Paul Reiser as Cy Feuer, Ethan Slater as Joel Grey, Byron Jennings as George Abbott, and Laura Osnes as Shirley MacLaine.

Butz is currently starring on Broadway in “My Fair Lady
See full article at Variety »

Spinal Tap to Reunite and Perform for 35th Anniversary Screening at Tribeca Film Festival

Spinal Tap to Reunite and Perform for 35th Anniversary Screening at Tribeca Film Festival
Spinal Tap, the loudest band in England, is reuniting for a 35th anniversary screening of their film This Is Spinal Tap at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival and will also perform following the screening.

Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer will turn it up to 11 again in a one-night-only concert in which they’ll perform as themselves in tribute to the fictional band Spinal Tap. So they won’t specifically be in character as Nigel Tufnel, David St. Hubbins and Derek Smalls. But they’ll further be joined by This is Spinal Tap director Rob Reiner for a conversation to follow.

“Spinal Tap proves there is definitely a fine line between stupid and clever,” director, co-writer and star Reiner said in a statement Monday.
See full article at The Wrap »

"True Blood" Creator Alan Ball Gives Details Of Musical Version In The Works

  • Deadline
True Blood fans rejoice. You may be getting a fix of the vampire fantasy story in musical form.

Speaking at a 10th anniversary screening of the pilot episode at Vulture Festival in Los Angeles on Sunday, creator Alan Ball gave details of the rumored musical version coming from composer Nathan Barr, which Ball says he’s heard is "pretty good."

"It tells the story of vampires coming out of the closet," Ball said.
See full article at Deadline »

John Bluthal obituary

John Bluthal obituary
Stage and screen actor who appeared in popular sitcoms including "Never Mind the Quality," "Feel the Width" and "The Vicar of Dibley."

The actor John Bluthal, who has died aged 89, forged a long and successful acting career in Britain that began in the golden age of television in the 1960s, when he provided a foil to the comedy legends Michael Bentine, Eric Sykes, Peter Cook and, over several decades, Spike Milligan.

Bluthal soared to the top of the bill when he starred alongside Joe Lynch in the sitcom "Never Mind the Quality", "Feel the Width" (1967-71), the pair playing respectively the Jewish jacket-maker Manny Cohen and the Irish trouser-maker Patrick Kelly running a business in the East End.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Can ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Survive Without Enchanting New Audiences?

Can ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Survive Without Enchanting New Audiences?
As J.K. Rowling continues to expand the “Harry Potter” universe, the generation that grew up watching onscreen adventures of the Boy Who Lived have remained a faithful bunch.

That much was clear from the opening weekend of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, the latest installment in the seemingly endless array of “Harry Potter” sequels, prequels, spinoffs and stage shows. The umpteenth return to the fantasy series launched with $62 million at the domestic box office, a sizable and potentially problematic drop from Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Like the first Fantastic Beasts installment, the audience breakdown was much older than the movies centering around the bespectacled boy wizard.

The lower than expected start displays that beyond die-hard fans, the Wizarding World has struggled to entice a new wave of Potterheads.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

The Original 'Frankenstein' Has Finally Been Restored After 108 Years

The Original 'Frankenstein' Has Finally Been Restored After 108 Years
Frankenstein isn’t the only Frankenstein. James Whale’s 1931 take on Mary Shelley’s iconic novel was beaten to the punch by the Edison Manufacturing, which in 1910 produced what a title card describes as a “liberal adaptation” of the story.

The Library of Congress purchased a collection of prints in 2014 that included a nitrate print of Frankenstein. Alois F. Dettlaff acquired it in the 1950s and brought it with him to film festivals and monster conventions for decades; a meeting with then-AMPAS president Robert Wise in 1986 failed to persuade him to let the Academy preserve and archive it.
See full article at Indiewire »

'Green Book' Has Successful Start at Indie Box Office Before Wide Release

  • The Wrap
'Green Book' Has Successful Start at Indie Box Office Before Wide Release
Before hitting the road on a nationwide release, Universal's awards contender Green Book got warmed up with a limited opening on 25 screens that earned $313,000 this weekend and a per screen average of $12,250.

Stars Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali are expected to be awards contenders for their performances as Italian-American bodyguard Tony Lip and jazz icon Dr. Don Shirley. Green Book follows the friendship that grew between the two men as Tony escorted Shirley on his tour through the Jim Crow South, using the titular Green Book to find hotels that African-Americans were allowed to stay in.
See full article at The Wrap »

Janelle Monae Signs First-Look Deal With Universal Pictures

Universal Pictures has entered into a first-look production agreement with Janelle Monae’s Wondaland Pictures, the film division of Wondaland.

Under the deal, Wondaland and Universal Pictures will aim at developing “multi-genre content with an emphasis on championing underrepresented voices and groundbreaking perspectives.”

The studio announced the deal Monday and noted that Monae stars in Universal’s “Welcome to Marwen,” which opens Dec. 21, and Harriet Tubman biopic “Harriet,” with an anticipated release in 2019 via Universal’s affiliate Focus Features.

“There is an exciting, artistic revolution taking place in our industry, and Janelle and the talented team at Wondaland are at the forefront,” said studio chairman Donna Langley. “Their forward-thinking, inclusive approach to content and storytelling make them a perfect fit for our studio.”

Monae is also starring in the Stx animated movie “UglyDolls” and is expected to perform original songs for the film. Her previous acting credits include “Moonlight” and
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Meredith Ahr Promoted to Lead NBC’s Alternative and Reality Group, Backfilling Paul Telegdy Role

  • The Wrap
In the continued restructuring at NBC Entertainment — recent exit of longtime network head Bob Greenblatt and subsequent promotions of George Cheeks and Paul TelegdyUniversal Television Alternative Studio head Meredith Ahr has been promoted to President, Alternative and Reality Group, NBC Entertainment, the company announced Monday.

She will report directly to recently-promoted NBC Co-Chairmen Cheeks and Telegdy (the previous head of alternative) in her new role, which encompasses development, production, business affairs, sales strategy, casting and talent development for the group.

Ahr, a 17-year NBC veteran, will now oversee all aspects of unscripted programming for the network, Universal Television Alternative Studio and first-run syndication, which includes “Access Hollywood” and the recently announced daytime series, “The Kelly Clarkson Show.”

Also Read: NBC Entertainment Chair Bob Greenblatt Steps Down, George Cheeks and Paul Telegdy to Share Role

Now with oversight over both the network and studio, Ahr will have “greater purview” over
See full article at The Wrap »

NBC Promotes Meredith Ahr to President, Alternative and Reality Group

Universal Television Alternative Studio head Meredith Ahr has been promoted to president of NBC Entertainment’s Alternative and Reality Group.

This marks the first major executive move at NBC since it was announced that George Cheeks and Paul Telegdy would become co-chairmen of the network, succeeding Bob Greenblatt. Telegdy was previously the president of the Alternative and Reality Group.

“In just two short years, Meredith has built a studio from the ground up and expanded her already indelible impact on NBCUniversal via the genre-defining alternative content she has personally overseen,” said Cheeks and Telegdy said. “There is no one better
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Viggo Mortensen to Receive American Riviera Award From Santa Barbara Film Festival

Viggo Mortensen to Receive American Riviera Award From Santa Barbara Film Festival
Green Book” star Viggo Mortensen will receive the American Riviera Award at the 2019 Santa Barbara International Film Festival, Sbiff organizers announced on Monday.

In the film, Mortensen stars as Anthony “Tony Lip” Vallelonga, a real-life bouncer from a New York City nightclub who in 1962 served as the driver and road manager for black pianist Dr. Don Shirley (Mahershala Ali) in a concert tour of the Deep South.

The film was directed by Peter Farrelly and has won 14 audience awards at film festivals around the world since its premiere in Toronto in September.

Also Read: 'Green Book' Film Review: Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali Take a Perilous Road Trip Through the Deep South

Mortensen’s previous roles include Oscar-nominated performances in “Captain Fantastic” and “Eastern Promises,” as well as “Witness,” “A History of Violence,” “A Dangerous Method” and the three “Lord of the Rings” movies, in which he starred as Aragorn.
See full article at The Wrap »

‘Spinal Tap,’ ‘Reality Bites’ Reunions Highlight 2019 Tribeca Film Festival

‘Spinal Tap,’ ‘Reality Bites’ Reunions Highlight 2019 Tribeca Film Festival
A full-band reunion of the This Is Spinal Tap cast and a 25th anniversary celebration of Reality Bites will headline the special programming at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival, which runs from April 24th to May 5th.

This Is Spinal Tap stars and creators Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Harry Shearer and director Rob Reiner will be in attendance for a 35th anniversary screening of the groundbreaking rock mockumentary, with “a special musical performance” and conversation to follow after the screening. “Spinal Tap proves there is definitely a fine line between stupid and clever,
See full article at Rolling Stone »

Olivia Colman: All Hail ‘The Favourite’ Queen

Olivia Colman: All Hail ‘The Favourite’ Queen
There’s a remarkable moment early on in The Favourite, the spiky palace-intrigue comedy from the Greek filmmaker Yorgos Lanthimos (and begins hitting theaters on November 23rd). It’s the early 18th century in England, and there’s a festive ball taking place at the court of Queen Anne. Revelers gather in lines, bowing and curtsying in their period-appropriate finery as they prepare to dance — the same scene we’ve witnessed dozens of times in stiff, stuffy costume dramas. Then, inexplicably, a few of the elite (including Anne’s secret lover Sarah Churchill,
See full article at Rolling Stone »

TV Shows to Watch the Week of Nov. 19, 2018: ‘Mystery Science Theater 3000,’ ‘Dirty John’

Welcome back to Tune In: our weekly newsletter offering a guide to the best of the week’s TV.

Each week, Variety’s TV team combs through the week’s schedule, selecting our picks of what to watch and when/how to watch them. This week, “Mystery Science Theater 3000” returns on Netflix and “Dirty John” debuts on Bravo.

The Last Kingdom,” Netflix, Monday

In the third season of the historical epic, King Alfred considers his legacy, as his dream of uniting the kingdoms of England is jeopardized by incessant Danish attacks. Alfred knows that the only man with the
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Indie Songwriter Dawn Landes Talks Fred Foster, Branson on Chris Shiflett Podcast

Years before recording her latest album Meet Me at the River with countrypolitan monolith Fred Foster, Dawn Landes cut her teeth in Louisville, New York City and Branson, Missouri. It was an unusual country-music education, shaped by the towns she called home and the local music that filled her stereo. Now based in Nashville, Landes puts an indie spin on the classic country tradition, reimagining a retro sound for the modern age.

We’ve rounded up our favorite segments of Dawn Landes’ new appearance on Chris Shiflett’s Walking the Floor,
See full article at Rolling Stone »

‘Aquaman’ Dons His Classic Outfit in Final Trailer (Video)

Warner Bros. has released the final trailer for DC’s “Aquaman,” which features Arthur Curry preparing to rise as King of Atlantis.

The trailer for the film, which will be released in December, shows Arthur (Jason Momoa) being raised from infancy on the tales and prophecies of his mother’s undersea home before undergoing rigorous training by his Atlantean mentor, Nuidis Vulko (Willem Dafoe). Then, as an adult, the seafaring member of the Justice League must take up his trident and stop his brother (Patrick Wilson) from declaring war on humanity while also fending off the human mercenary Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II).

Also Read: 'Aquaman,' 'Venom' and - Surprisingly - 'Crazy Rich Asians' Head to China

Amber Heard, Dolph Lundgren, and Nicole Kidman also star, with James Wan directing from a script co-written by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick and Will Beall. It’s one
See full article at The Wrap »

Marrakech Film Festival Unveils Full Lineup, Jury for 17th Edition

Marrakech Film Festival Unveils Full Lineup, Jury for 17th Edition
Kent Jones’ “Diane,” Eva Trobisch’s “All Good” and Lila Aviles’ “The Chambermaid” are among the 14 features set to compete at the revamped Marrakech Film Festival, which will host its 17th edition Nov. 30 to Dec. 8.

“Diane,” which world premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and won three awards, stars Mary Kay Place (“The Big Chill”) as a mother desperately trying to bond with her son, who suffers from drug addiction. The movie was executive produced by Martin Scorsese.

“All Good,” Trobisch’s debut, revolves around a young woman who is raped but refuses to be victim. The movie was a standout at Locarno, where it won the first-feature competition.

The Chambermaid,” from Mexican theater actress-turned-helmer Aviles, premiered in Toronto’s Discovery section and won two awards at the Morelia Film Festival. The movie portrays Eve, a young chambermaid working at Mexico City’s classy Hotel Presidente Internacional. Trobisch and Aviles
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘House of Cards': Robin Wright-Led Final Season Draws Fewer Viewers, But Skews More Female

Netflix drew fewer viewers for the final run of “House of Cards,” but the audience was more female for the Robin Wright-led sixth season.

According to Nielsen’s Subscription Video On Demand (Svod) Content Ratings, which measures streaming viewership, the audience makeup for the final season of “House of Cards” skewed 54 percent female, after the last season that starred Kevin Spacey was made up of 56 percent men.

But overall, viewership for the first seven days since the show’s Season 6 premiere on Nov. 2 was down compared to season five. “House of Cards” truncated eight-episode season drew an average minute audience of 1.5 million, down 21 percent from the 1.9 million that season 5 averaged for its 13 episodes within the same time frame.

Also Read: Here's How 'House of Cards' Wrote Out Kevin Spacey's Frank Underwood

Netflix doesn’t publicly release viewership figures for its shows, but Nielsen last year partnered with
See full article at The Wrap »
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