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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 »

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

  • The Wrap
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 »

Covington Student Refuses to Apologize After Viral Video: ‘I Was Not Disrespectful’ (Video)

Covington Student Refuses to Apologize After Viral Video: ‘I Was Not Disrespectful’ (Video)
Covington Catholic student Nicholas Sandmann spoke out for the first time on Wednesday, defending himself after video of him seemingly taunting Native American tribal elder Nathan Phillips went viral over the weekend.

“As far as standing there, I had every right to do so. My position is that I was not disrespectful to Mr. Phillips. I respect him. I’d like to talk to him,” Sandmann told “Today” host Savannah Guthrie. “But I can’t say that I’m sorry for listening to him and standing there.”

Sandmann also denied that he or his classmates had said racist things, noting that such talk would have been forbidden by his school.

Also Read: Vulture Writer Who Wished Death on Covington Students Fired From Job at Ine Entertainment

“We’re a Catholic school, and it’s not tolerated. They don’t tolerate racism, and none of my classmates are racist people,” he said,
See full article at The Wrap »

Mindy Kaling Created Her Own Opportunities (and Doesn’t Plan on Stopping)

Mindy Kaling Created Her Own Opportunities (and Doesn’t Plan on Stopping)
Over the course of two hit sitcoms, a couple of best-selling books and some scene-stealing turns in Hollywood blockbusters such as “Ocean’s 8” and “Inside Out,” Mindy Kaling has cultivated an image as a kinder, gentler and more relatable star than most. On Instagram or Twitter, where she routinely shares parenting anecdotes and restaurant recommendations, she comes across as a celebrity you could easily spend a day with shopping at the mall or hanging out on the couch watching Netflix.

“I’ll never be this very glamorous person who people see from a distance … frosty and remote,” says Kaling. “I’ve never been demure or mysterious. People always tell me they feel like I could be their friend.”

That kind of relatability has its drawbacks. An hour before she was supposed to sit down for an interview with Variety, Kaling was involved in a car crash in Los Angeles’ Hancock Park.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

YouTube TV Expanding to Cover Entire U.S., No International Launch Plans Right Now

Soon, virtually anyone in the U.S. will be able to subscribe to YouTube TV, Google’s $40 monthly over-the-top internet television service aimed at cord-cutters.

First launched in five cities in April 2016, YouTube TV has been available in the top 100 markets in the U.S., covering around 85% of households, for about a year. Starting Wednesday (Jan. 23), the service will begin rolling out in an additional 95 markets, covering over 98% of Us households. The company said YouTube TV will be coming the remaining 15 of the U.S.’s 210 designated market areas will follow “shortly thereafter.”

For now, Google has no plans to
See full article at Variety - TV News »

YouTube TV Expands Nationwide Ahead of Super Bowl

YouTube TV, the video giant’s bid to topple its cable and satellite rivals, is expanding nationwide on Wednesday.

The service, which runs $40 a month and lets subscribers stream the four major networks and several cable channels, including ESPN, CNN and TNT, already reached the top 100 markets in the U.S. YouTube TV’s expansion add 95 markets — including Reno, Nevada, and Boise, Idaho — boosting coverage from about 85 percent to 98 percent of the country.

Since launching nearly two year ago, YouTube has touted its live TV service as a cheaper and better alternative to traditional TV providers. The service lets users watch on their television, mobile, desktop and tablet screens and offers unlimited recording. Each YouTube TV subscription comes with six accounts.

Also Read: Disney Has Already Lost $1 Billion on Streaming Behind Hulu, BAMTech Investments

The new markets come online just a week before the Super Bowl, which is set to
See full article at The Wrap »

Natpe: Turner Latin America, Dopamine Strike Three-Series Production Alliance (Exclusive)

Miami — Turner Latin America and Mexico’s Dopamine, a Salinas Group company, have struck a production alliance to develop and produce three original series: “Tu parte del trato,” “Amarres” and “Coyatl.”

The pact adds to the Natpe announcement on Monday of “Las Bravas F.C,” the first series in Turner Latin America’s five-year strategic production partnership with Mediapro.

In another deal, ITV Studios Global Entertainment and Turner Latin America announced Tuesday an exclusive non-scripted representation and formats production deal for Tla on ITV formats for Latin America.

The Dopamine, Mediapro and ITV partnerships give further force to the muscular
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Pol-ka at 25: Adrian Suar Sets New Era Agenda

Pol-ka at 25: Adrian Suar Sets New Era Agenda
Miami — Boldly taking on the challenges of TV’s future as it turns 25, Argentina’s Pol-ka Producciones, one of Latin America’s few historic independent TV companies, is turning to the past.

Shooting from Jan. 2, but set in Buenos Aires from 1936 to 1945, “Argentina, Land of Passion and Revenge,” intertwines the contrasting fates of three emigrants who flee Europe for Argentina. Torcuato mixes in high-society; Bruno, his brother in arms in Spain¡s Civil War before an act of extraordinary treachery on Torquato’s past, suffers far worse luck; and Raquel, a Polish ingenue, even worse, ending up in a brothel.
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Pol-ka at 25: 2019’s Production Slate Highlights

Madrid — Pol-ka’s banner titles straddle telenovelas and international-length series. Here are highlights, projects, productions and shows now screening packing one of the most ambitious slates of any Latin American company:

‘Argentina, Land Of Passion And Revenge’ (Pol-ka)

The big one, at least for free-to-air. A period piece, so far more expensive to shoot, so rarer as a production, and a potential event series. A portrait of Spain’s diaspora to Argentina after its Civil War, the tawdry ethics of the new (and old) homeland, betrayal, passion, poverty and ill-gotten gains. A big play by Pol-ka to snatch Telefe’s ratings crown for El Trece.
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Bryan Singer Faces New Accusations of Sexual Misconduct With Underage Boys

Bryan Singer Faces New Accusations of Sexual Misconduct With Underage Boys
Bryan Singer faces new accusations of sexual misconduct involving underage boys in an exposé published Wednesday by The Atlantic, in which multiple men accuse the Hollywood director of either seducing them when they were underage or of rape.

One young man said that he had sex with Singer during a 1997 at the filmmaker’s house when he was 17; another said he was 15 when he had sex that same year in a Beverly Hills mansion. Both said that Singer, who was then in his 30s, knew they were under the age of consent in California.

The Atlantic said that it interviewed more than 50 people for its story, including four previously unidentified accusers.

Singer’s attorney, Andrew B. Brettler, did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but he told The Atlantic that Singer vehemently denies that he ever had sex with underage men and noted that Singer had never been arrested for any crime.
See full article at The Wrap »

Natpe Briefs: ‘Judge Jerry’ Sets Ep, Sony Pictures Pacts With ‘Ugly Betty’ Creator

NBCUniversal’s “Judge Jerry” has set its production team and reached 90% clearance across the U.S. for its fall launch. The court show hosted by longtime talk show host Jerry Springer will be exec produced by Kerry Shannon, previously a producer on “Jerry Springer Show.” Leah Ponce and Joe Scott, alums of “Judge Judy” and other court shows, are on board as co-exec producers. “The combination of Jerry’s proven experience in broadcast television and his legal mind will make ‘Judge Jerry’ like no other courtroom show on TV,” Shannon said. New stations lined up for the gaveler include Tribune
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Tamron Hall Brings Her Truth and TV Training to Daytime Talk Show

Miami — Tamron Hall is proud of her TV trifecta.

For a few years, the former “Today” anchor could be found most weekdays airing on three networks at the same time.

During her 2010-2016 tenure as a co-anchor of “Today’s” 9 a.m. hour, Hall would follow that show by switching to an anchor slot on MSNBC. And she also hosted the NBC-produced series “Deadline: Crime with Tamron Hall” for Investigation Discovery. There were many days when the 9 a.m. hour of “Today” would air on the West Coast while she was anchoring live on MSNBC and ID would run
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Meredith Vieira Back in Syndication Game With ’25 Words or Less’

Meredith Vieira Back in Syndication Game With ’25 Words or Less’
Miami — Meredith Vieira is stocking up on stationary.

The former “Today” anchor and panelist on “The View” is set to return to daytime TV in the fall as host of the syndicated game show “25 Words or Less,” from Fox Television Stations and Twentieth Television. Vieira is a 15-time Emmy winner who has worked all over the dial as a host, news anchor, producer and editor. But she is unabashed in her love of watching and hosting game shows.

“I like a challenge and I love game,” Vieira told Variety as she made the rounds of TV station general managers here
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Univision and Story House Alums Launch Production Banner Dubbed Immigrant

Former Story House Entertainment CEO Camila Jiménez-Villa and Silvana Aguirre, creator and showrunner of “El Chapo,” have joined forces to launch a production company dubbed the Immigrant.

Based in Los Angeles and Miami, Immigrant will develop and produce premium content in the U.S., Latin America and Spain. The shingle will focus on multicultural stories and talent in the United States, while sourcing stories with international appeal from Latin America and Spain.

New company has up to seven English-language and Spanish-language scripted projects in development, including a co-production with Italian production house Wildside to be helmed by Argentine award-winning writer-director
See full article at Variety - TV News »
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