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Merger Mayhem: Media Companies Scramble to Bulk Up in Order to Survive

Hollywood hasn’t been this on edge since the advent of talking pictures nearly a century ago.

Across every studio lot, in the halls of every network, production company and talent agency, there’s a level of angst that has spiked far beyond the usual panic over opening-weekend box office numbers or the ratings of a big-budget series.

The cause of all the tumult and tsuris? The threat to traditional film and TV businesses posed by the five horsemen of the digital apocalypse: Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google. Their internet-fueled growth over the past decade has left Hollywood scrambling
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Merger Mayhem: Media Companies Scramble to Bulk Up in Order to Survive

Hollywood hasn’t been this on edge since the advent of talking pictures nearly a century ago.

Across every studio lot, in the halls of every network, production company and talent agency, there’s a level of angst that has spiked far beyond the usual panic over opening-weekend box office numbers or the ratings of a big-budget series.

The cause of all the tumult and tsuris? The threat to traditional film and TV businesses posed by the five horsemen of the digital apocalypse: Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google. Their internet-fueled growth over the past decade has left Hollywood scrambling to overhaul core business models to reach consumers directly — instead of indirectly, through distributors. The dread is that the menace posed by the so-called Faang posse will get worse: Many speculate that the infidels have only just begun to storm the castle, and have yet to tap their formidable balance
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Tuesday Blus: Anguished Oppressors in Fleischer’s The New Centurions Richard Fleischer

While he maintained a curiously uneven track record throughout his five decades as a director, Richard Fleischer’s career was speckled with as many underrated gems as camp misfires, which perhaps explains why he’s probably best remembered today for the latter portion of his career, which included the B-grade bombast of Soylent Green (1973) and a couple mid-80s Schwarzenegger vehicles (Conan the Destroyer; Red Sonja). Worse, he was also responsible for that 1980 revamp of The Jazz Singer, a shameless franchise entry with Amityville 3D (1983), and the cringey distinction of adapting Ken Onstott’s controversial Mandingo (1975). Still, he’s an Oscar… Read the rest

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See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Honorary Oscars: A look back at 90 years, from Charlie Chaplin to Bob Hope to Donald Sutherland

Honorary Oscars: A look back at 90 years, from Charlie Chaplin to Bob Hope to Donald Sutherland
Over the decades, special or honorary Oscars have gone to everything from a film series to animated shorts to innovators to a ventriloquist to child performers to foreign films. Tour our photo galleries for a look back featuring every performer honored (above) and every non-performer honored (below).

Two special awards were handed out at the first Academy Awards on May 16, 1929:

Charlie Chaplin, who had originally been nominated for lead actor and for comedy direction for his 1928 masterpiece “The Circus,” was withdrawn from those nominations when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences’ Board of Governors gave him a special award for his “versatility in writing, acting, directing and producing” the comedy.

Warner Brothers also picked up a special honorary for producing 1927’s “The Jazz Singer”-“the pioneer outstanding talking picture, which has revolutionized the industry”.

Now called honorary Oscars, Donald Sutherland, cinematographer Owen Roizman (“The French Connection,” “The Exorcist
See full article at Gold Derby »

Mary J. Blige Talks ‘Mudbound,’ Divorce and ‘Messing Up in Front of the World’

Mary J. Blige Talks ‘Mudbound,’ Divorce and ‘Messing Up in Front of the World’
The transition from music to acting has been a bridge too far for many musicians, but Mary J. Blige isn’t just any singer. She brought multiple talents and skills to the daunting role of Florence Jackson in Dee Rees’ “Mudbound,” the story of a sharecropper’s wife trying to raise her family in the Jim Crow-era South.

Blige had acted professionally before, appearing opposite Tom Cruise in the hair-metal musical “Rock of Ages” in 2012, channeling the Wicked Witch of the West as Evillene in a live production of “The Wiz,” and even played Dr. Betty Shabazz, Malcolm X’s wife, opposite Angela Bassett in the TV movie “Betty & Coretta.”

Of course, channeling emotion is an essential element of singing, and as a vocalist, Blige, who is receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Jan. 11, is practically without peer: For more than a quarter-century, over a dozen-odd studio albums, nine Grammy Awards,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

15 Actors Almost Cast as Superman

  • MovieWeb
15 Actors Almost Cast as Superman
"It's a bird, it's a plane, it's... Sylvester Stallone?!" Christopher Reeve cast such a long shadow after his incredible portrayal of Superman it took years to get another actor into the cape. (And lookalike actor Brandon Routh's performance in Superman Returns was nothing short of homage.) But before Christopher Reeve, and in many developmental stages along the way, under the guidance of directors like Tim Burton, Brett Ratner, and McG, a handful of major movie stars came close to securing the role of DC's Last Son of Krypton. Here, we're looking at 15 actors who were almost Superman.

Paul Newman

Paul Newman, the late screen legend who starred opposite Robert Redford in the cinematic classic Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, among other notable roles, turned down Superman not once, not twice, but three different times. He was offered the lead role, as well as the roles of Lex Luthor and Superman's dad,
See full article at MovieWeb »

Celebrate Neil Diamond's 50th Anniversary Tour with These 7 Fascinating Stories Behind His Biggest Hits

Celebrate Neil Diamond's 50th Anniversary Tour with These 7 Fascinating Stories Behind His Biggest Hits
Neil Diamond will always be a classic gem in the rock business.

With over 130 million albums sold, multiple Grammy wins and a spot in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame, the 76-year old singer is currently celebrating more than half a century in the music industry with his 50th Anniversary tour. To join in his festivities, here are the stories behind some of Diamond’s biggest hits.

1. “Red Red Wine” (1967)

Though the song was first recorded by Diamond, UB40 recorded this song as a cover of the Tony Tribe 1969 reggae version.

UB40 didn’t realize until after it topped
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

Horror Highlights: Exhumed Films’ 35mm Marathon, Escape Room, Paperbacks From Hell, Godzilla Faq, Ghastlies, Mountain Fever

Exhumed Films is resurrecting some beloved horror favorites from the 1970s and ’80s and projecting them onto the big screen at Alamo Drafthouse Yonkers, including Friday the 13th Part III, starring my original horror crush and maybe yours, too, Jason Voorhees! And also, we have release details for Escape Room, Paperbacks From Hell, Ghastlies, and Mountain Fever, as well as information on the new book Godzilla Faq.

Exhumed Films' Guilty Pleasures IV Marathon: Press Release: "Exhumed Films Presents: Guilty Pleasures IV--in 3-D!

Exhumed Films is pleased to return to the Alamo Drafthouse Yonkers to present the fourth edition of The Guilty Pleasures Marathon, our annual assault of cinematic insanity. For this year’s marathon, we present some of the greatest 3-D films of all time, projected from original 35mm prints using state of the art technology! The 1970’s and 1980’s saw a resurgence of three-dimensional movies, particularly in the realm of genre cinema.
See full article at DailyDead »

Remembering Forgotten Early Female Documentarian and That Talkies Began Long Before 'The Jazz Singer'

'Amazing Tales from the Archives': Pioneering female documentarian Aloha Wanderwell Baker remembered at the San Francisco Silent Film Festival – along with the largely forgotten sound-on-cylinder technology and the Jean Desmet Collection. 'Amazing Tales from the Archives': San Francisco Silent Film Festival & the 'sound-on-cylinder' system Fans of the earliest sound films would have enjoyed the first presentation at the 2017 San Francisco Silent Film Festival, held June 1–4: “Amazing Tales from the Archives,” during which Library of Congress' Nitrate Film Vault Manager George Willeman used a wealth of enjoyable film clips to examine the Thomas Edison Kinetophone process. In the years 1913–1914, long before The Jazz Singer and Warner Bros.' sound-on-disc technology, the sound-on-cylinder system invaded the nascent film industry with a collection of “talkies.” The sound was scratchy and muffled, but “recognizable.” Notably, this system focused on dialogue, rather than music or sound effects. As with the making of other recordings at the time, the
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Prom-Themed 40th Anniversary Carrie Reunion/Charity Event Heading to La’s Ace Hotel; October 14th Sees Reunion/Screening

With Scream Factory’s upcoming 40th Anniversary Bluray release of Brian de Palma’s 1976 classic Carrie on its way, what better way to not only celebrate the release, the legacy and the film that brought so many of us into either discovering or rediscovering the work of Stephen King, than with an all out 40th Anniversary reunion/screening/charity event?

Going down on Friday, October 14, 2016, the event is taking place not only to celebrate the release, but also as an effort to raise critical funds for the weSPARK Cancer Support Center (which sees Carrie star Nancy Allen as its Executive Director). The Ace Theater will be transformed head to tow with prom-themed decorations, and attendees are encouraged to dress in their best ’70s formal attire (or favorite character from the film for an opportunity to pose for a photo in a special photo booth and win Best Dressed “Carrie” character
See full article at Icons of Fright »

Carrie Reunion Screening & Prom-Themed After Party to Raise Money for weSPARK’s Cancer Support Center

  • DailyDead
Scream Factory is already celebrating the 40th anniversary of Carrie with a Collector's Edition Blu-ray release of the iconic film, and now they are taking the prom party one step further with a cast and crew reunion screening in Los Angeles to raise money for the weSPARK Cancer Support Center.

Taking place at the Ace Theater in Los Angeles on Friday, October 14th, the 40th anniversary screening of Carrie will reunite cast members Piper Laurie, Nancy Allen, William Katt, and P.J. Soles, as well as editor Paul Hirsch and casting director Harriett B. Helberg.

The 1970s prom-themed evening will feature a screening of Scream Factory's new 4k transfer of Carrie and a cast and crew Q&A moderated by Bryan Fuller (NBC's Hannibal). The money raised through the event will go to weSPARK's cancer support programs. To learn more, we have the official press release with full details:

Press Release: Los Angeles,
See full article at DailyDead »

‘Pray For Death’ Blu-ray Review (101 Films)

Stars: Shô Kosugi, James Booth, Donna Kei Benz, Norman Burton, Kane Kosugi, Shane Kosugi, Matthew Faison, Parley Baer, Robert Ito, Michael Constantine, Alan Amiel, Woody Watson | Written by James Booth | Directed by Gordon Hessler

Pray For Death was the second film – outside of the Ninja Trilogy – to feature Sho Kosugi in a lead role and is easily one of, if not the, best film Kosugi has ever made. The film sees Shô Kosugi star as Akira, a Japanese businessman who, jaded by his job and looking for a better life for his family, moves to America. He opens a restaurant with his wife and kids but his world is shattered when he stumbles upon the headquarters of a sinister gang, led by crime lord Limehouse Willie. Wrongfully accused of stealing a precious necklace, the gangsters begin a rampage of murder that takes the life of Akira’s wife and threatens
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

Every Best Picture Oscar Winner, Ranked From Worst to Best

This week marks the 10th anniversary of the release of "Crash" (on May 6, 2005), an all-star movie whose controversy came not from its provocative treatment of racial issues but from its Best Picture Oscar victory a few months later, against what many critics felt was a much more deserving movie, "Brokeback Mountain."

The "Crash" vs. "Brokeback" battle is one of those lingering disputes that makes the Academy Awards so fascinating, year after year. Moviegoers and critics who revisit older movies are constantly judging the Academy's judgment. Even decades of hindsight may not always be enough to tell whether the Oscar voters of a particular year got it right or wrong. Whether it's "Birdman" vs. "Boyhood," "The King's Speech" vs. "The Social Network," "Saving Private Ryan" vs. "Shakespeare in Love" or even "An American in Paris" vs. "A Streetcar Named Desire," we're still confirming the Academy's taste or dismissing it as hopelessly off-base years later.
See full article at Moviefone »

‘Selma’ Star Wendell Pierce to Make Film Producing Debut With Racial Drama ‘Billy’ (Exclusive)

  • The Wrap
‘Selma’ Star Wendell Pierce to Make Film Producing Debut With Racial Drama ‘Billy’ (Exclusive)
In his first foray in producing since winning a Tony Award for producing “Clybourne Park” on Broadway, “Selma” star Wendell Pierce has come on to produce the racial drama “Billy” with Jerry Leider (“The Jazz Singer”), TheWrap has learned. Writer-director Martin Davidson is behind the adaptation of author Albert French’s debut novel, which was published in 1995. Davidson is the filmmaker behind the cult classics “Eddie and the Cruisers” and “The Lords of Flatbush.” A “To Kill a Mockingbird”-esque drama set in 1947, “Billy” is an emotional roller-coaster that tells the story of how a small segregated town in Mississippi reacts.
See full article at The Wrap »

Past Oscar Nominees Could Dominate Costume Design Category

By Anjelica Oswald

Managing Editor

The 87th Academy Awards could see a collection of familiar names in the costume design category, from Oscar winner and 10-time nominee Colleen Atwood to one-time nominee Michael Wilkinson. When It comes down to securing nominations for costumes, it doesn’t matter how well the film has fared in other Oscar categories. Films such as Jane Eyre (2011), Mirror Mirror (2012) and The Invisible Woman (2013) were only nominated for costume design.

Atwood could receive nominations for Disney’s Into the Woods and Tim Burton’s Big Eyes during the upcoming awards cycle. Of her 10 nominations to date, she’s won three: best picture winner Chicago (2002), Memoirs of a Geisha (2005) and Burton’s Alice in Wonderland (2010). Atwood has designed the costumes for nine of Burton’s films: Edward Scissorhands (1990), Ed Wood (1994), Sleepy Hollow (1999), Planet of the Apes (2001), Big Fish (2003), Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007), Alice in Wonderland
See full article at Scott Feinberg »

To Date, Academy Has Had Only 3 Female Presidents; Today, Stronger Female Presence in Board of Governors

Women presidents at the Academy: Cheryl Boone Isaacs is only the third one (photo: Angelina Jolie, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, Brad Pitt) (See previous post: "Honorary Award Non-Winners: Too Late for Gloria Swanson, Rita Hayworth, Marlene Dietrich.") Wrapping up this four-part "Honorary Oscars Bypass Women" article, let it be noted that in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' 85-year history there have been only two women presidents: two-time Oscar-winning actress Bette Davis (for two months in 1941, before the Dangerous and Jezebel star was forced to resign) and screenwriter Fay Kanin (1979-1983), whose best-known screen credit is the 1958 Doris Day-Clark Gable comedy Teacher's Pet. Additionally, following some top-level restructuring in April 2011, the Academy created the positions of Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer, with the CEO post currently held by a woman, former Film Independent executive director and sometime actress Dawn Hudson. The COO post is held
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Neil Diamond is engaged; 'I'm lovestruck' he says

  • Pop2it
Legendary singer Neil Diamond has found his "Sweet Caroline." The crooner announced on Twitter on a "September Morn" (Wednesday, Sept. 7) he is engaged to Katie McNeil.

"Good news coming from sunny La ... and you're the first I want to tell ... Katie & I just got engaged ... I'm lovestruck," writes "The Jazz Singer" star.

McNeil is Diamond's manager and was the executive producer for the 2009 documentary "Neil Diamond: Hot August Night/NYC."

It's been a good year for the 70-year-old Diamond. In addition to the engagement, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Game in March. It was also announced Wednesday that he will receive a Kennedy Center Honor, recognizing his contributions to American culture.

This will be his third marriage.
See full article at Pop2it »

Happy 70th birthday, Neil Diamond!

Happy 70th birthday, Neil Diamond!
Neil Diamond turns 70 today, and even though the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee seems to have deserted us on Twitter — his last tweet was on New Year’s Eve and linked to funny animal voiceovers — we’re still going to celebrate him. We can’t write “Happy Birthday Neil Diamond!” in the sky like someone did Sunday over the Bel-Air hills, but perhaps we can take a moment to each write a sentence describing our love for the man. I’ll give you a few ideas:

• My key chain is a silver guitar with the words “Neil Diamond World Tour 2008″ on it.
See full article at EW.com - PopWatch »

Neil Diamond in the Rock Hall of Fame...Really?!

Neil Diamond in the Rock Hall of Fame...Really?!
The Jazz Singer is getting some rock recognition. Neil Diamond—yes, that Neil Diamond—is atop today's list of first-time nominees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, alongside the likes of Bon Jovi and Alice Cooper. We get Bon Jovi, with the '80s hair and riff-driven hits like "Livin' On a Prayer," "You Give Love a Bad Name," and "Wanted Dead or Alive." And Cooper was the original shock-rocker, with his bad mascara and parent-scaring cuts "School's Out" and "No More Mr. Nice Guy." But the guy who sings "Sweet Caroline?" What kind of rock cred does he have? Plenty, it turns out. While Diamond might be best known for his...
See full article at E! Online »

'Glee' Premiere Recap: The Gleeks Say 'Hell-o'

The hit show returns with a few surprises.

By Jean Bentley

Matthew Morrison and Lea Michele in Tuesday's "Glee"

Photo: Carin Baer/ Fox

Ladies and gentlemen, "Glee" is back. And with it, the seemingly impossible task of living up to the already sky-high levels of hype leveled upon it during the show's ultra-long hiatus. Well, you can rest easy knowing that in "Hell-o," creator Ryan Murphy and his writers crafted a well-paced, clever episode of their Golden Globe-winning comedy that culminated in a musical number set to the Beatles' "Hello Goodbye."

What's changed at McKinley High since New Directions won regionals in December? Well, although Kurt, Mercedes and Rachel had hoped everything would be different, three slurpees to the face on their first day back proved otherwise. Sue Sylvester regained control of the Cheerios, thanks to a well-timed roofie that allowed her to take some very compromising photos of her in bed with Principal Figgins.
See full article at MTV Music News »
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