Latest Blog Posts

<p>Olivia Wilde:&nbsp;Nature girl.</p>

Olivia Wilde: Nature girl.

Watch: Olivia Wilde discusses westerns and streaking for 'Cowboys and Aliens'

Some lighthearted moments in Montana

Yes, she's talking about streaking.

To answer a question a few of you had about the Harrison Ford interview yesterday, no, that's not a green screen behind us with stock footage of cows and cowboys playing in the background. The press event was held on a ranch in Montana just outside of Missoula, and those are real cows, that's a real field.

Usually these interviews are held in cramped and hot hotel rooms, and it's not always the most pleasant experience for the actors who must sit there and give interview after interview all day long.

Here, instead of hotel rooms they had set up a row of tents that held all the lights and the equipment, with the back wall open to the field you see behind us. The ranch sent some cows and some cowboys to hang out back there as set dressing and the result is what you see in this interview.

Needless to say this was a nice change of pace, and a very relaxed atmosphere prevailed, which is probably why the subject of streaking came up.

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<p>OK Go</p>

OK Go

Watch: OK Go contort into funny shapes for 'All Is Not Lost' video

Innovative group wears revealing green outfits with Pilobolus dance company

I’m convinced that in the years to come, college courses will be taught on OK Go’s innovation. It’s not just their videos —although those are the most obvious example— but the group’s use of technology, interaction with their fans, and their ability to reinvent themselves are non-paralleled. Now that they are on their own following their split with EMI last year, the only constraints are time and money and they seem to have found ways to work around both.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>A scene from Glen Mazzara's episode from &quot;The Walking Dead&quot;&nbsp;season one.</p>
<br />

A scene from Glen Mazzara's episode from "The Walking Dead" season one.


Credit: AMC

'The Walking Dead': Glen Mazzara takes over as showrunner

'The Shield' veteran ran seasons of 'Crash' and 'Hawthorne'

The bizarre behind-the-scenes shuffle at "The Walking Dead" seems to have settled down, with Glen Mazzara named to succeed Frank Darabont as showrunner.

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<p>Oh, Riggins, you sank my battleship</p>

Oh, Riggins, you sank my battleship

Credit: Universal Pictures

Watch: Taylor Kitsch and Liam Neeson aren't playing in first trailer for 'Battleship'

How does Peter Berg turn a board game into a big summer event?

Yep.  That's exactly what I'd expect a Peter Berg "Battleship" to look like.

It's funny… Berg is one of those guys who has definitely made enough films now that we can get a handle on him as a filmmaker, and between his writing, his producing, and his directing, he seems to be a mass of fascinating contradictions.  The rancid, curdled laughs of "Very Bad Things," the heartfelt sincerity of "Friday Night Lights," and the balls-out macho of "The Rundown" all feel like the work of different people, but I get the feeling that's Berg in a nutshell.  Here's a guy who is capable of great sensitivity, but who has an inner musclehead that will not be denied.

"Battleship" looks, frankly, hilarious.  Berg is smart enough to know that there is something inherently ridiculous about making a film based on that game, and so he's embraced that and made a movie that looks, based on this first trailer, to be blatantly aware of what it is.  That Brooklyn Decker/Taylor Kitsch stuff on the beach is straight out of the "Armageddon" playbook… all we need are some animal crackers.  And the dynamic between Kitsch and Liam Neeson looks awfully familiar as well for fans of Michael Bay's movie about the meteor the size of Texas.

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"Chuck" co-star Adam Baldwin.
"Chuck" co-star Adam Baldwin.

Watch: 'Chuck' co-star Adam Baldwin at Comic-Con

Has John Casey gone soft in the show's old age?

We saved a fan favorite for last with these "Chuckvideo interviews from Comic-Con: the hero of Canton, the man they call Adam Baldwin.

Baldwin is the one member of the "Chuck" cast who refuses (publicly, at least) to believe that these 13 episodes will be the end of the show. Regardless of when "Chuck" concludes, John Casey has definitely evolved over the last four seasons, and we talked about how Baldwin has tried to keep the character's edge while letting him grow, about the Casey/Morgan friendship, and more.

Hope you liked these. As with almost everything at Comic-Con, there wasn't much time, but I tried to get a sense of what these people will miss about the show.

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<p>Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone take in the spectacle of Steve Carell and Julianne Moore's marriage in free-fall in 'Crazy, Stupid, Love'</p>

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone take in the spectacle of Steve Carell and Julianne Moore's marriage in free-fall in 'Crazy, Stupid, Love'

Credit: Warner Bros.

Review: Gosling, Stone, Carell excel in smart, adult 'Crazy, Stupid, Love'

Romantic comedy plays both to and against convention to strong effect

Romantic comedy is a difficult genre to get right, and I think that's because audiences are so painfully undemanding when it comes to what they'll pay to see.  As long as producers and writers and directors are rewarded for just maintaining the status quo and making the same thing over and over, there's no reason for anyone to try any harder.  In the case of "Crazy Stupid Love," it is obvious that everyone involved is aware of the cliches they're up against, and they seem determined to avoid the traps that are inherent to this kind of material.  They are more successful than not, thanks in large part to a great cast, and overall, the film is an above-average example of how to do this.

Although next to no one saw "I Love You, Philip Morris," the last film directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, but it was a smart, wicked, impressive take on the romantic comedy that pretty much exploded all the conventions of the genre, not least because the story dealt with two men as the central couple.  The two of them worked together as a writing team first on the films "Cats & Dogs," "Bad Santa," and the remake of "The Bad News Bears."  Oddly, they did not write "Crazy Stupid Love," which was instead written by Dan Fogelman, whose credits include "Cars," "Bolt," and "Tangled."  From that list of credits, I wouldn't really imagine a film like "Crazy Stupid Love" to result from the collision between them all, but it seems like their sensibilities are a nice mesh, and the result is something that definitely has a very mainstream sensibility, but punctuated with some genuine observation, some honest insight into the way we all struggle towards what we think we want, and how we often lie to ourselves about what that is.

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<p>For the first time in his career, Jason Reitman will not screen his latest project at the Toronto Film Festival.</p>

For the first time in his career, Jason Reitman will not screen his latest project at the Toronto Film Festival.

Credit: AP Photo/Pete Kramer

What films are surprisingly not at the Toronto Film Festival this year?

'Young Adult,' 'Tinker, Tailor' and 'Iron Lady' won't cross the border

The announcement of this year's Toronto Film Festival line up included a number of pictures expected to premiere or screen north of the border. Award season contenders such as Alexander Payne's "The Descendants," Bennett Miller's "Moneyball," Sarah Polley's "Take this Waltz" and Jonathan Levine's "50/50" seemed destined for Toronto months ago.  There were three films, however, that didn't make the initial cut which raised some eyebrows.

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<p>Harrison Ford: outstanding in a field.</p>

Harrison Ford: outstanding in a field.

Watch: Harrison Ford talks craft in Montana for 'Cowboys and Aliens'

"It's fun to play a character the audience doesn't find an instant sympathy for."

Harrison Ford was kind enough to set-a-spell with me in Montana a few days back to talk about "Cowboys and Aliens," Jon Favreau's genre mash-up of sci fi film and western that opens this Friday. Set in the late 1800's, the movie answers the ageless question: 'what would happen if aliens invaded the old west?'

Ford's Character is Colonel Dolarhyde, a rich and rather bitter rancher. Dolarhyde is forced to team up with an amnesia stricken bandit (Daniel Craig) as well as the Indians he despises in order to fend off the invading horde of aliens and retrieve his kidnapped son and the rest of the townspeople.

I have to admit that I was pretty nervous about talking to the man. A feeling I shared with seemingly everyone else from the press. He's scary to us. He can be a man of few words and he does not suffer fools gladly. It's not hard to imagine how many "fools" become entertainment reporters, so you can see how he may build a reputation of being "difficult" among them.

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Gene Simmons and Shannon Tweed of "Gene Simmons Family Jewels"

Gene Simmons and Shannon Tweed of "Gene Simmons Family Jewels"

Credit: A&E

Recap 'Gene Simmons Family Jewels': Is the ending really a cliffhanger?

The sitcom-ready plot of the season finale is fun, but it skips over the deeper issues

In the midst of the season finale of “Gene Simmons Family Jewels,” son Nick teases his rock star dad, saying, “You are a sitcom. Who writes you?” It’s a question that could be asked of the entire episode, which hits every sitcom beat (and sometimes better than a lot of the actual sitcoms in prime time, but still). Gene orders a custom ring. It doesn't arrive when it's supposed to! He wants to propose at the top of a Mayan ruin but gets too winded to do it! He tries to pop the question during a biplane ride, but she can't hear him over the engine! Wacky, wacky hijinks abound!

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<p>Frank Darabont, seen here with &quot;The Walking Dead&quot;&nbsp;co-star Jon Bernthal, has stepped down as showrunner.</p>

Frank Darabont, seen here with "The Walking Dead" co-star Jon Bernthal, has stepped down as showrunner.

Credit: AMC

Frank Darabont stepping down as 'Walking Dead' showrunner

Was the weekly grind too much for the movie veteran?

In what's become a strange annual tradition, the eve of the Television Critics Association press tour has been marked by a surprise resignation. Two years ago, Ben Silverman bailed on NBC. A year ago, Steve McPherson bolted from ABC. Today, Frank Darabont stepped down as showrunner on AMC's "The Walking Dead."

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<p>Lady Gaga</p>

Lady Gaga

Credit: AP Photo

Listen: Lady Gaga talks Amy Winehouse and her new video for 'You and I'

Singer sounds remarkably sweet and relaxed during radio interview

Lady Gaga stopped by Omaha radio station, KQCH 94.1, yesterday after shooting the video for new single “You & I,” and had very sweet things to say about Amy Winehouse.

“I never got to meet here,” Lady Gaga says. “I think sometimes we were in the same place. Gosh, I’m real devastated about it... I really remember being in New York. I was with Lady Starlight. She and I were in Duane Reade shopping for eyelashes and glue and I just remember I saw her on the cover of Rolling Stone. It was [her] first cover. I always felt like an outsider.. [Lady Starlight] looked over at me and said, ‘If she can do it, you can do it.’ I always felt like Amy opened a door for girls like me, who didn’t fit that exact, real pop, real wholesome...she was really special and she’ll be greatly missed.” The comments about Winehouse come in around the 7-minute mark.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Summer Glau, Ryan Kwanten, and Steve Zahn are all part of the LARPing comedy-adventure 'Knights Of Badassdom,' one of the highlights of Comic-Con 2011.</p>

Summer Glau, Ryan Kwanten, and Steve Zahn are all part of the LARPing comedy-adventure 'Knights Of Badassdom,' one of the highlights of Comic-Con 2011.

Credit: Indie Vest Pictures

`Comic-Con: 'Knights Of Badassdom' conquers Hall H with 'True Blood,' 'Firefly,' and 'Community' cast

Plus all the Dinklage you could ever need

SAN DIEGO - Saturday was a strange and sort of wonderful day in Hall H, and it felt like panel after panel had somehow slipped one by the programmers.  I love it when the films that play in Hall H are the things that need attention, not the things that have already had more than a little hype ahead of time.  For many people, the "what the heck was THAT?!" discovery of this year's Comic-Con was Joe Lynch's "Knights Of Badassdom."  I thought the entire panel was entertaining and funny and confident, and it seemed to convince the tough audience sitting around me as well.

There's no denying the high concept of "Knights" is pretty much as niche nerd specific as possible, and that can be tricky when a distributor is thinking about how to sell something, but the film benefits from having a cast that is suddenly very high-profile and easier to sell.  You're looking at a lot of overlap from different types of fandom, plus a sort of cumulative marketability that comes from the sort of cross-platform buzz you can generate with these people involved.  If there's one thing I learned from this year's convention, it is that television draws huge crowds, bigger than the movie panels this year, and should not be underestimated as a commercial force.

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