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<p>Sony&#39;s planning to pile &#39;Spider-Man&#39; related movies into the theater at a startling pace, and Drew Goddard is close to signing his deal to direct &#39;The Sinister Six&#39;</p>

Sony's planning to pile 'Spider-Man' related movies into the theater at a startling pace, and Drew Goddard is close to signing his deal to direct 'The Sinister Six'

Credit: Marvel Comics

Drew Goddard nears a deal to direct the Spider-Man spinoff film 'The Sinister Six'

Is this really a good plan for Sony?

We've heard over and over now that Sony is planning to expand the "world of Spider-Man," and it seems to me to be one of the riskiest plans any studio in Hollywood has at the moment.

Sure, it sounds like a safe bet at first. After all, it's Spider-Man. He was one of the first of the true blockbuster superheroes of the modern age of superhero movies, and the reboot a few years ago went about as well as Sony could have hoped. They are notably light on homegrown franchises at Sony, so they're looking to make the most of Spider-Man while they can. The problem is that they may well be pushing the property to the breaking point in the process.

I think Drew Goddard is a tremendous choice for pretty much anything. The guy's a damn fine writer, and "Cabin In The Woods" is a film that I have enjoyed more each time I've seen it. There is something really interesting in a playful sort of way about trying to build a big giant movie around nothing but super-powered bad guys, and if they're not actually fighting Spider-Man, I'm not sure what "The Sinister Six" is going to be about. That's not necessarily a bad thing. We're at the point with these movies where filmmakers are going to have to start shattering formula and trying new things if they want to keep the films fresh and if they want to keep surprising audiences.

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"Dancing with the Stars"

"Dancing with the Stars"

Credit: ABC

'Dancing with the Stars' recap: The partner swap has unexpected results

Not everyone stumbles with a new pro dancer

Hey, guess who's on "Dancing with the Stars" this week? Julianne Hough! She'll be sitting in at the judges' table, and I fully expect her to be a great judge (sorry, Robin Roberts, but you were kinda useless). She's not only a dancer, she's been a dancer on this show -- so she's not going to pull any punches. Possibly. This week, the celebs will be getting a new partner -- just for the week, mind you -- so it could open the door to hot messes. Or greatness. Depends on the switch! If anything, this is sure to make some of the pros nervous. No one wants to think their star is circling the drain because of something they are or aren't doing.  

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Report: Jillian Michaels wants to quit 'The Biggest Loser' over its poor treatment of contestants

Report: Jillian Michaels wants to quit “The Biggest Loser" over its poor treatment of contestants
"She is deeply concerned about the direction the show has been taking," a source tells People magazine. "She is turned off by the mean-spirited story lines and poor care of the contestants."


Coming to NBC: “NBC’s Epic Funnies”
The “America’s Funniest Home Videos”-esque clip show will take funny online clips and put them on TV.


Ashley Tisdale & George Wendt team for TBS barbershop sitcom
The untitled comedy from the creators of “Will & Grace” will have Tisdale playing a barber and the former “Cheers” star taking on the role as the barbershop’s former owner.


NBC Universal boss confident Fallon will beat Letterman’s replacement — and it won’t be Leno or Tina Fey
Steve Burke says Fey seems happy making TV shows and movies for NBC Universal, while Jay Leno is on the verge of signing a deal to do occasional specials.


Is “Game of Thrones” a “chick show”?
"Think about it,” says Amanda Marcotte. "Nearly all the plots set in motion in (the Season 4 premiere) are the stuff of traditionally feminine narratives. Marital troubles, sexual jealousy, ungrateful children, and, of course, the intricacies of wedding planning. It's All My Children, just with more amputated limbs.” PLUS: Ranking the women from the season premiere, more questions answered from the premiere, a chart shows how the show lines up with the books, the 6-foot-6 The Hound talks about working with Maisie Williams, and meet the inventor of the Dothraki and Valyrian languages.


Jimmy Fallon is being touted for bashing both Democrats and Republicans
Is he the most centrist late-night host?


Doctor sues claiming he was assaulted by “Bar Rescue” host
Dr. Paul Wilkes claims he was asked by the show’s production company to hit on Jon Taffer’s wife, which resulted in him getting beat up by the Spike TV host.


Why Chelsea Handler is the wrong choice for CBS
The E! star shtick doesn't have mainstream appeal.


“Shameless” boss explains why he kept the cast in the dark
That season finale scene was shot separately from the entire cast.


“Silicon Valley” is an upscale "Big Bang Theory” — and a wasted opportunity
"Instead of pulling back the curtain on startup hype and eviscerating empty techie values, 'Silicon Valley' is an upscale 'Big Bang Theory' that gets its laughs from a mural of a Pakistani guy penetrating the Statue of Liberty,” argues David Auerbach, a former Google employee. PLUS: How “Silicon Valley” got those tech cameos and nailed tech culture, and “Silicon Valley” does have a women problem.


“Battlestar Galactica” rebooted movie will have nothing to do with the Syfy series
Ron Moore isn’t even involved, though original series creator Glen Larson is producing the film.


“Full House’s” Bob Saget picks his favorite TV dads
Ted Mosby isn't one of them.


Confessions of a Louis CK hater
Jonathan Heaf calls the “Louie” star a "sociopath with a microphone. The man is just not funny."


“Dollhouse’s” Enver Gjokaj lands on “Rizzoli & Isles”
He’ll play a professor over the course of three episodes.


“The Simpsons” honors Minecraft
Watch a creepy, animated version of the Springfield family.


Vice presidents are all the rage on TV
From “Veep” to “House of Cards” to “Scandal,” VPs are taking over the small screen.


Man sues BET after getting shot at the cable network’s BET Awards after-party
Antwon Black claims BET and Viacom should be blamed for the poor security.


Ranking TV shows with “house” in the title
No. 1: “House of Cards.”


Nicole Eggert’s 15-year-old daughter doesn’t want to watch “Charles in Charge”
"She's really not that interested in it,” says Eggert, who’s now 42.." Maybe it's weird for her, I don't know. But she never watches them.”


Cheryl Burke dropped 15 pounds before this “Dancing” season
“(I) tried every diet you could think of,” she says of striving to lose weight after she was dubbed fat by “Internet trolls” six years ago.


Which late-night host is the best-dressed?
Jimmy Fallon wears Ralph Lauren suits, Jimmy Kimmel wears black Nike socks.


“West Wing” VP Gary Cole hasn’t offered advice to the “Veep”
Cole talks about his role on the HBO series. PLUS: What it’s like being Jonah.


The 8 stages of watching a new TV show
From resistance to acceptance.


Watch a preview of “Devious Maids” Season 2
The Lifetime series returns April 20.


See the 1st episode of James Cameron’s Showtime doc series “Years of Living Dangerously”
The documentary series features reports from Harrison Ford, Matt Damon, Olivia Munn, Jessica Alba and Don Cheadle.

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10 MORE fun facts about the MTV Movie Awards: Jennifer Lawrence, Jaden Smith, Oscar crossover

10 MORE fun facts about the MTV Movie Awards: Jennifer Lawrence, Jaden Smith, Oscar crossover

The 23rd annual ceremony is just around the corner

Last year we dug through the often heart-breaking history of the MTV Movie Awards (which seem to be leaning slightly less…bad…lately) to come up with a list of 10 fun facts for your perusal pleasure. With the 23rd annual show on the horizon, we thought we'd do a bit more searching to see if there were any other interesting factoids, and sure enough, there were a couple. (I say "we," but really I'm the only one sick enough to have bothered with this.)

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<p>I can&#39;t wait to see the dramatic fall-out when Han Solo walks in on this during &#39;Star Wars Episode VII&#39;</p>

I can't wait to see the dramatic fall-out when Han Solo walks in on this during 'Star Wars Episode VII'

Credit: 20th Century Fox/Lucasfilm Ltd.

Peter Mayhew will suit up again as Chewbacca for 'Star Wars Episode 7'

Pretty sure this confirms that the Expanded Universe no longer matters

Okay, so can we finally stop asking how much of the Expanded Universe they're planning to use in "Star Wars: Episode VII"?

In 1999, "Vector Prime" was published as part of the "New Jedi Order" series of novels. In it, author R. A. Salvatore secured his place on my enemies list by killing Chewbacca as he tried to save Han Solo's son Anakin. I am a lifelong shameless fan of Han Solo's friend and business partner, and I've always felt like they treated Chewie badly. In the first film, I've never understood why he doesn't get a medal at the same time as Han Solo and Luke Skywalker. It's like they think he's Han Solo's dog instead of his co-pilot. Killing him made headlines, but it didn't make for a good book, and it seemed really short-sighted of them to eliminate the character.

Thankfully, those books no longer matter. If you're a fan who spent a lot of time and energy on the Expanded Universe novels, I sincerely hope you enjoyed them and that they were part of your personal "Star Wars" experience, but I think it's important that the films don't feel bound to adapt those stories or treat them as canon. These films have to be able to surprise us, and if it's just a matter of them creating a big-screen checklist of things that fans already know, what fun would that be?

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Ed Sheeran

Ed Sheeran shows off his funky side on new single 'Sing': Listen

Pharrell Williams produces first track from Sheeran's sophomore album

Ed Sheeran shows off a side of the British singer/songwriter that his fans have not seen before on new single, “Sing.”

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<p>Bruce Dern and Leonard Maltin at the 29th annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival in January.</p>

Bruce Dern and Leonard Maltin at the 29th annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival in January.

Credit: AP Photo

Santa Barbara fest extends schedule in honor of 30th annual event

Also announces 'Wave' summer film festival

In honor of its upcoming 30th anniversary, the Santa Barbara International Film Festival has extended its calendar by one day, just one of a number of ways the annual event will be celebrating as it enters its third decade.

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'Bates Motel' earns a 3rd season

“Bates Motel” earns a 3rd season
A&E has picked up “Bates” for a 10-episode Season 3.


Samuel L. Jackson films cameo for “Marvels Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."
Jackson says he reprised Nick Fury in the season finale.


“Conan” coming to Comic-Con
Conan O’Brien will broadcast an entire week of shows from Comic-Con in San Diego, starting July 8.


TCM will celebrate Mickey Rooney’s life on with a 13-episode marathon on Sunday
Turner Classic Movies will kick off the marathon honoring Rooney, who died yesterday at 93, with “Broadway to Hollywood."


“The Bachelor” creator marries a Miss America, with Chris Harrison officiating
Mike Fleiss, 49, married 26-year-old former Miss America Laura Kaeppeler on Sunday.

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<p>Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith are both expected back for the sequel to &#39;Karate Kid&#39;</p>

Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith are both expected back for the sequel to 'Karate Kid'

Credit: Sony Pictures

'Crazies' director Breck Eisner signs to direct Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith in 'Karate Kid' sequel

Took 'em long enough

My children reached a major milestone in their life recently, when I screened the new film "Chinese Zodiac" for them on Blu-ray. The film isn't one of Jackie Chan's best, but it has several fun set pieces, and the closing credits are like a giant overview of Jackie's whole career, along with footage of his stunts going wrong, a long-time tradition for his movies.

They have now both declared Jackie Chan The Coolest Person Alive and they're desperate to see more of his movies. I get it, because I know so many movie fans who have had that same lightning bolt moment with Jackie Chan movies over the years. You see him do something that defies logic and safety and the rules of physics, and next thing you know, you're in Chinatown trying to find an import Blu-ray of the uncut "Drunken Master 2."

What really blew their minds, though, was when I told them that "Chinese Zodiac" was not the first film they've seen him in. Toshi told me I was crazy and refused to believe me until I brought out the Blu-ray for the remake of "The Karate Kid," a movie that they both watched four or five times after it arrived at the house. They really enjoyed the film, but for some reason, they never connected the Jackie Chan who plays Mr. Miyagi in that film with the Jackie Chan from "Chinese Zodiac." Once Toshi finally got his head around it, he was even more impressed.

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<p>Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore of &quot;Bates Motel&quot;</p>

Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore of "Bates Motel"

Credit: A&E

A&E renews 'Bates Motel' for Season 3

'Psycho' prequel will get 10 more episodes in 2015

A&E is checking into The Bates Motel for a third season of... um... "Bates Motel."

The network formally announced on Monday (April 7) that "Bates Motel" will begin production this fall on a new run of 10 episodes. Presumably, they'll premiere in early 2015, following in the footsteps of the first two "Bates" seasons.

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<p>RZA</p>

RZA

Credit: HitFix

RZA on Wu-Tang's $5 million-plus secret album, and why 'Tomorrow' won't be easy

Preparation on 'A Better Tomorrow' is 'a stumbling block'

LOS ANGELES - RZA may be out and about promoting his film "Brick Mansions" co-starring the late Paul Walker, but it's clear that the rapper/director/actor/producer is also in full-promo mode for the couple of projects Wu-Tang Clan has in the hopper.

Most recently, RZA announced that the hip-hop group had spent the last six years secretly recording the album "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin," of which only a single copy will be released, and to the highest bidder. The album will be encased in original silver-and-nickel box designed by artist Yahya and is intended -- in RZA's words -- as a work of art; whoever ends up purchasing it can do with it whatever he or she wants, whether hold it in a private collection or release it somehow for public consumption or otherwise. Curious fans will hopefully be able to listen to "Shaolin" like they would view a touring piece of art or artifacts: in museums and galleries, and for a price.

In the meantime, the MC admitted the Wu's 20th anniversary album "A Better Tomorrow" has undergone a number of delays, and it's currently (and very tentatively) slated for release this summer. RZA's mentioned in other reports that the participation of Raekwon among other members has been dodgy.

But, yes, the whole crew is present and accounted for on "Once Upon a Time..." RZA told me in our video interview, though recording it was a vastly different experience than laying down "A Better Tomorrow."

Below is an abridged transcription of RZA's response to what Wu-Tang Clan's participation was like for "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin," and what he hopes to achieve with its rare release:

I think the secrecy of that project allowed it to be fulfilled. I think the openness of "A Better Tomorrow" is gonna be a stumbling block. Which is weird, but it is part of the dynamic of my crew.

Most people, if you offer them medicine, they won't take it. You gotta put it in their food. And "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin" was like the medicine was put into the food. "A Better Tomorrow is like, "Yo, you need this" and "Nah, I don't need it." That's the analogy I will give it.

I will say "A Better Tomorrow" isn't only for us, it's for the people, for the world... that's what that concept is. "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin" is a dream of a fan. People always ask me "How did it feel to make 'The Man with the Iron Fists,' to have Gordon Liu in your movie and T-Kwan [Thomas Chow Wai Kwan] and Quentin Tarantino all around you?' I'm fan of these people. That's the greatest feeling, [as] a fan to finally realize his dream and to meet the people he admired become his peers.

"Once Upon a Time in Shaolin" is that story ... more than anything, it ain't that people gotta raise money. The price of something is because of the rarity of it. But the idea of music being art, of music being a work of art, and a piece of art... people are responding more to the artistic value of it more than the number value.

Of course the number value is gonna be whatever. I've sold an album for $5 million before. I sold "Bobby Digital," I had a $5 million budget. "Wu-Tang Forever" is nothing new, getting a lot of money. It's about now appreciating art for what it is. That's what's been missing. We've become entitled.

Here we have a movie, "Brick Mansions." It took years to make, and for actors, you're talking 60 to 70 days schedule, some away from your families. Guys risking their lives jumping of roof. Millions of dollars spent, thousands of hours... and a person now gets to enjoy all this for $10 to $12. Why try to get it for free? If you keep getting it for free, how can we make another one? You don't want music, then say that. And we'll stop. That's something I'm really adamant about, fans of music and film will realize that as they legally consume, it's gonna bring back the output.

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<p>If I were the director of &#39;X-Men: Days Of Future Past,&#39; I can&#39;t imagine this would make me happy.</p>

If I were the director of 'X-Men: Days Of Future Past,' I can't imagine this would make me happy.

Credit: Carl's Jr.

Why is our first view of Quicksilver from 'X-Men' in a Carl's Jr. TV commercial?

This feels like a huge tactical mistake

We must be getting close to the release of "X-Men: Days Of Future Past" if the fast-food tie-in commercials are already airing.

Here's what I don't understand. Quicksilver, played in Bryan Singer's movie by Evan Peters, is one of the main new characters in the series, and he plays a key role in securing Magneto's escape from an impossible prison in the film. We've seen photos of Peters in his costume from the film, but he hasn't featured in any significant way in the trailers so far.

That means that our visual introduction to Quicksilver in motion comes in the form of 30 seconds of him eating an X-tra Bacon, Egg & Cheese biscuit. If they were hoping to make him seem interesting or intimidating or cool, this is pretty much the opposite of the way they should have handled things.

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