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<p>Rima Te Wiata and Morgana O&#39;Reilly are a very funny mother-daughter team in the clever haunted house movie &#39;Housebound&#39;</p>

Rima Te Wiata and Morgana O'Reilly are a very funny mother-daughter team in the clever haunted house movie 'Housebound'

Credit: SXSW 2014

Review: 'Housebound' is an above-average execution of the haunted house genre

Smart and funny, someone needs to snap this up

AUSTIN - Sometimes at the festival you walk into a room knowing nothing, sit down, and get your skull punched in by a movie that is calibrated perfectly, that knows exactly what it wants to do, and that seems almost unnaturally confident considering it was made by a first-time feature director.

"Housebound" is one of those movies.

There is something about the New Zealand sense of humor that I find enormously charming. It's very dry, very matter of fact, and "Housebound" is that rare film that manages to be funny without defusing any of its scares. What starts out as one genre of film turns out to be something entirely different, and instead of that feeling like one big cheat, it's actually handled in such a way that you can't help but admire the writing and the careful way in which things are revealed.

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Newsflash: 'Divergent's' Theo James is a bonafide movie star

Newsflash: 'Divergent's' Theo James is a bonafide movie star

'Golden Boy' finds it on the big screen

The Hollywood machine isn't the studio-based system that it was in the mid-20th Century.  An almost conspiratorial corporate entity that would spend years cultivating and curating movie stars. But, to some extent, it still exists in 2014.  Through publicists, agents and even studios, the industry still tries to "create" new stars. And, for better or worse (depending how you see it), it's mostly male actors that get this treatment today (although any leading lady in a Michael Bay film may qualify outside of Scarlett Johansson).  Some happen almost by accident (Robert Pattinson), some have delayed debuts (Chris Hemsworth), many aren't worthy of the hype (Alex Pettyfer) and a few may take decades before they are deliver on their potential (Matthew McConaughey).  Next weekend the big screen adaptation of "Divergent" is hitting theaters and, all of a sudden, people are going to start talking about Theo James.

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Luke Bryan

'Frozen' and Luke Bryan face off for top album in the country next week

Five new titles debut in the Top 10

As Spring nears, “Frozen” will spread one more cool blast over the Billboard 200 as the soundtrack is poised to return to the top spot one more time.  In its 16th week, the set will likely bounce up from No. 3 with projected sales of up to 80,000.

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<p>Rob Thomas was thrilled to get more money to play with for the &#39;Veronica Mars&#39; film, but it sounds like he made every dollar count.</p>

Rob Thomas was thrilled to get more money to play with for the 'Veronica Mars' film, but it sounds like he made every dollar count.

Credit: HitFix

Rob Thomas talks about creating a sense of scale for 'Veronica Mars'

Plus guess what part of the film he feels like he fumbled

Rob Thomas has a habit of creating television shows I love.

As habits go, that seems to be a good one, but for some reason, these shows that he creates that I love never seem to last long enough.

Take "Cupid," for example. The first incarnation of the show ran for fifteen episodes in 1998, starring Jeremy Piven and Paula Marshall, and it was charming and smart and featured a cast that had off-the-charts chemistry with each other.

Then there was "Veronica Mars," which managed a full 64 episodes over three seasons, starring Kristen Bell, and it was charming and smart and featured a cast that had off-the-charts chemistry with each other.

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<p>Friday&#39;s &quot;Grimm&quot;</p>

Friday's "Grimm"

Credit: NBC

TV Ratings: 'Grimm' lifts 'Hannibal,' 'Rake' lowers 'Enlisted' as CBS, ABC split Friday

'Blue Bloods' and 'Shark Tank' lead Friday as usual

Fast National ratings for Friday, March 14, 2014.

Stop me if you've heard this before: "Shark Tank" (and a strong "20/20") helped ABC win Friday night among young viewers, while "Blue Bloods" anchored CBS' commanding primetime sweep overall.

Pretty dull, right?

There were a couple little wrinkles.

Over on FOX, "Rake" moved to its new time period and showed that its dismal Thursday numbers were somehow still inflated by "Idol," as it predictably hit series lows and also send "Enlisted" down a hair.

The news was a bit better over on NBC, where "Grimm" had its best performance since its October premiere and gave "Hannibal" a small bump among young viewers.

On to the familiar numbers...

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<p>&quot;Orange Is The New Black&quot; stars Taylor Schilling and Laura Prepon</p>

"Orange Is The New Black" stars Taylor Schilling and Laura Prepon

Credit: Kevin Parry for Paley Center for Media

11 Things We Learned From the 'Orange Is The New Black' PaleyFest Panel

The mysterious Vee, the impact of binge-viewing and Jason Biggs' self-evaluation

Played out before an enthusiastic crowd on Friday (March 14) night, the PaleyFest debut for Netflix's "Orange Is The New Black" was a mixed-to-positive affair. 

Mostly positive.

The 70-minute panel, which proceeded by only a brief Season 1 clip reel, was a fantastic showcase for the chemistry of the deep ensemble cast, which was represented by 11 returning stars, one fresh face and one unannounced guest. Plenty of time was spent on the show's progressive stance for women, racial diversity and diversification of gender and sexual roles. Plenty of time was also spent buttering Netflix up, as seemingly the entire cast raved about the idea of binge-watching TV, but only referenced "House of Cards" as a show that might be binged. Paying near-religious tribute to series developer and showrunner Jenji Kohan, the "Orange" team celebrated their unique working environment and the freedom it gives them.

As a big fan of "Orange Is The New Black," I quite enjoyed the frequently overlapping conversations and, for the most part, I bought the affection shown by the stars.

What the panel weirdly skipped over was any specificity, which meant that as a journalist covering the panel, I don't have a huge amount to report on. For a show that isn't really about plot twists, representatives of "Orange" have always been weirdly spoiler-phobic, so there literally is nothing concrete I can tell you about the plot of the second season. There will be continuing tensions in the relationship between Piper (Taylor Schilling) and Larry (Jason Biggs). Duh. And a new character, Vee (Lorraine Toussaint) will shake things up. OK. A list of which characters we'll learn more about included nearly all of the characters, but Kohan wouldn't say who will be getting flashback episodes.

In addition, almost none of the major plotpoints from last season were even mentioned. We somehow waited til the audience questions to even mention the cliffhanger from the first season, if not to say how it will impact Piper and Pennsatucky (Taryn Manning) going forward, to talk about the character arcs that took them to that point. It was enough to say that the characters all changed in Season 1, but nobody wanted to dig deeply into how that change was orchestrated. 

Oh well. It didn't mean it was a bad panel. Not at all! It just means I may not have a lot to say. Click through for some things we learned from the PaleyFest panel. There are no meaningful Season 2 spoilers. 

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Kat Dennings slams an allegation that Lindsay Lohan was a trainwreck on '2 Broke Girls'

Kat Dennings slams an allegation that Lindsay Lohan was a trainwreck on “2 Broke Girls”
A blog post claimed Lohan had Botoxed lips that prevented her from reciting her lines during this week’s taping. "This article is complete bulls--t. Lindsay was prepared, sweet to everyone, & professional," Dennings tweeted. "Not nice to spread lies."


“Veronica Mars” creator addresses movie download problems
Some fans are upset that they can only download the movie via an unwieldy service like Flixster, instead of iTunes. “Unfortunately,” says Rob Thomas, "it just wasn’t possible. In the end, Flixster was the best option for getting the digital movie reward out to all of you, worldwide, at the same time.”


Spice Girl Mel B joins Rob Lowe on “The Pro”
The “America’s Got Talent” judge is the latest big name added to Lowe’s tennis-themed sitcom.


Lifetime is working on more movies based on “Flowers in the Attic” author V.C. Andrews’ books
“Attic” sequel "Petals on the Wind,” which is already filming, will be joined by movies based on "If There Be Thorns and Seeds of Yesterday” and "My Sweet Audrina.”


“American Pie’s” Eddie Kaye Thomas joins CBS’ “Scorpion”
He’ll play a member of the super-geniuses team in the drama from director Justin Lin.

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<p>On &quot;Hannibal,&quot; Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) has his day in court.</p>

On "Hannibal," Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) has his day in court.

Credit: NBC

Review: 'Hannibal' - 'Hassun'

Will gets his day in court, while new murders may be his way to freedom

A quick review of tonight's "Hannibal" coming up just as soon as it occurs to me to send you an ear...

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<p>Somehow I don&#39;t think there&#39;s going to be a lot of time to sit around looking pensive as we play our first full evening of Respawn Entertainment&#39;s amazing new game &#39;Titanfall&#39;</p>

Somehow I don't think there's going to be a lot of time to sit around looking pensive as we play our first full evening of Respawn Entertainment's amazing new game 'Titanfall'

Credit: EA/Respawn Entertainment

HitFix kicks off its first Twitch TV channel with a live 'Titanfall' broadcast

You're welcome to play along, but go easy on me

It's opening weekend for the year's first giant-scale blockbuster.

It's just not happening at a theater near you.

At this point, I think it's safe to say that the launch of a AAA-title in the gaming world is just as big a cultural moment as the release of any movie, and if you want to argue it purely on an economic level, then many game releases are bigger than their movie counterparts at this point.

Monday night at midnight, I was smack dab in the middle of seeing "Among The Living" at the SXSW Film Festival, a completely lunatic new horror film from the French filmmakers behind "Inside" and "Livid." When I travel to Austin, I stay with my favorite married couple, Aaron and Kaela, and it's become a home away from home for me. Aaron's a filmmaker, but he is also a rabid gamer, and while he was having a great time seeing films at SXSW, he had made arrangements months earlier to be busy with something else while I was watching that midnight movie. By the time I got back to his house, he had already gotten "Titanfall" up and running, and he was neck-deep in the campaign mode.

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<p>Leandra Leal and Milhem Cortaz in &quot;A Wolf at the Door.&quot;</p>

Leandra Leal and Milhem Cortaz in "A Wolf at the Door."

Credit: Mundial

Miami Film Festival Diary: Brazil comes on strong in 'A Wolf at the Door' and 'Man of the Crowd'

Latin American cinema continues to impress at the fest

MIAMI - One of the pleasures of smaller film festivals, where one's viewing is less dutifully structured around competitions and mandatory big-name premieres, is pick-and-mix scheduling -- selecting the day's viewing on a mixture of gut instinct and chance convenience, and seeing what unexpected patterns and conflicts emerge.

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<p>Veronica Mars</p>

Veronica Mars

Credit: Warner Bros.

'Veronica Mars' movie is an extended TV-episode in movie form — just what fans wanted

“Veronica Mars” movie is an extended TV-episode in movie form — just what fans wanted
The Kickstarter-funded film doesn’t aspire to be anything else or to appeal to new viewers.
As Willa Paskin notes, "'Veronica Mars' movie is an object lesson in what TV can do that movies can’t: give its audience 60-plus hours of intimate knowledge of a huge cast of characters and their various interpersonal relationships. If you put in the time with the show, watching all of those dynamics pay-off in the movie is a high-order treat. And from the looks of things, there’s no reason it has to be the last: 'Veronica Mars' is now poised to become as many movies as TV watchers are willing to pay for.” PLUS: How “Marshmallows” reacted at last night’s midnight screening, the film's technology is impressively up to date, “Veronica” disappoints with its digital download service, in defense of Season 3, and Rob Thomas says, "if we lose money, then it will be a failure."


“Workaholics” star Anders Holm joins “How I Met Your Dad”
He’ll play Greta Gerwig’s future ex-husband. PLUS: "HIMYD" also casts "Masters of Sex" star Nick D’Agosto and "Mixology‘s" Andrew Santino.


Wendell Pierce will co-star with Matthew Perry on CBS's “The Odd Couple”
“The Wire,” “Treme” and “Michael J. Fox Show” vet will play Oscar’s cop buddy.


George R.R. Martin is willing to split a “Game of Thrones” season in half or do a prequel
If he’s not done with the books, Martin says there are options to postpone the series finale. But he worries that the younger actresses are growing up too fast. "Time is passing very slowly in the books and very fast in real life,” he says. PLUS: Is the Iron Throne constructed from a “Lord of the Rings” sword?, and how many Targaryen dragons would one Stark dire wolf need to eat to survive?


“Banshee” boss: Cinemax doesn’t mandate all that sex and nudity
“They want to make kind of pulpy noir dramas where sex and violence come into play,” says showrunner Greg Yaitanes “We're just honoring those kinds of scenes. And if we're going to do them, we're going to go all out.”


Here’s your 1st look at the “HIMYM” series finale
Are any of these pics from the future?


Odette Annable joins “Astronaut Wives Club”
The “House” alum will play the youngest of the astronaut wives, who happens to be a licensed pilot. PLUS: Melissa George joining ABC’s Katie Holmes pilot, and “Justified’s” Damon Herriman joins Starz’s “Flesh and Bone."


Scott Bakula: "There was some insanity going on” shooting the “NCIS: New Orleans” backdoor pilot
Bakula recalls a bus full of tourists passing by8 him and Mark Harmon shooting a scene, shouting “Hey Gibbs!”


After 1 month, Jimmy Fallon has greatly improved “The Tonight Show,” becoming late-night's Tom Hanks
Believe it or not, Sunday is Fallon’s one-month anniversary at the helm of "The Tonight Show." And so far, so spectacular. As Mary McNamara notes, "Unlike, say, Conan O’Brien or even Jimmy Kimmel, Fallon’s shtick is his everyman quality. He is the Tom Hanks of hosting, able to project endearing uncertainty even as he clearly runs the show.” PLUS: Fallon is still dominating Kimmel and Letterman.


Honey Boo Boo’s mom likens herself to Kim Kardashian
“We have kids out of wedlock,” she says as her family dresses up as the Kardashians for Halloween on Sunday’s episode.


It was 5 years ago that President Obama made his 1st controversial talk show visit -- to Jay Leno
Obama was accused of "diminishing his presidency" with his March 19, 2009 visit to “The Tonight Show," the first time a sitting U.S. president visited a late-night show. Five years later, the same is being said about Obama's visit to Zach Galifianakis' “Between Two Ferns.” But as U.S. News points out, the president’s way of communicating with the American people has constantly evolved with the revolution in media. FDR did it with radio. JFK did it with TV. Presidents have to find new ways to get their message across, says U.S. News, which is what Obama was doing by going on "Between Two Ferns." PLUS: More "Between Two Ferns" discusson from Stephen Colbert, and Letterman & Bill O'Reilly.


“The Simpsons” inspires a Lego opening couch gag
Check out what one fan of both the TV series and “The Lego Movie” did. PLUS: See images from the “Family Guy” mobile game, and Fox’s animated comedies celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in a special video.


Jessica Capshaw shows how “Grey’s Anatomy” shoots her with a stump
Capshaw tweeted a series of before and after pics here, here, here, here and here.


Lea Michele may have broken the “Glee” pop music star curse
“Glee” alums like Matthew Morrison, Darren Criss and Naya Rivera have attempted solo careers. But Michele actually has a Top 5 release.


Why do network midseason sitcoms often fail?
Few midseason comedies have survived in recent years.


“True Detective” vs. “Twin Peaks”
Why both mystery crime shows are the same. “The Oldest."


Is TV seeing a new age of powerful women?
Olivia Pope, Selina Meyer, Claire Underwood and even Leslie Knope could be part of a new television trend.


How “SNL’s” Cecily Strong stays happy
“Don’t underestimate the feel-good power of lashes,” she writes in Glamour magazine.


Scott Foley addresses last night’s “Scandal” shocker
“Will Shonda Rhimes do it?” he wonders. PLUS: Joshua Malina’s pharmacist wants to know what happened.


“Sons of Anarchy’s” Kurt Sutter pens an article slamming Google’s copyright stance
“The big G doesn’t contribute anything to the work of creatives,” he writes in Slate. "Not a minute of effort or a dime of financing. Yet Google wants to take our content, devalue it, and make it available for criminals to pirate for profit.”


Watch the trailer for TNT's “Murder in the First"
The Steven Bochco drama premieres in June.


“Real World: Ex-Plosion” stars visited the original San Francisco “Real World” house
One of the housemates was an infant in 1994 when MTV filmed the third “Real World” season in the Bay Area.


Lily Allen: MTV is trying to ban my new music video from the daytime
The singer claims the cable network wants her to censor her video for showing antisocial behavior.


Here are the last glimpses of NBC Burbank
MSNBC's Lawrence O’Donnell, after doing the final broadcast from NBC Burbank, tweeted paintings of Jay Leno and Johnny Carson that are featured on the NBC Burbank walls.


Here are the 10 best movies based on TV shows
From “Borat” to “21 Jump Street.”


What was Billy Eichner like before he was “On the Street”?
Eichner’s early work includes "Projeckt Runwausen,” a German expressionist version of
"Project Runway.”


TV is all the rage among playwrights
“SVU” is run by a playwright, “House of Cards” was created by one and, of course, Aaron Sorkin is a playwright.


“Enlisted” creator: How my heart attack, at age 32, influenced tonight’s PTSD episode
Kevin Biegel says almost dying five years ago helped him in creating the military comedy.


Fred Armisen teaches how to play the “Late Night” theme song
Armisen and a fellow band member made a special video with his guitar.


Presenting the 7 most annoying people to watch TV with
From The Talker to The Nitpicker.


Why television needs “Hannibal”
One of the most original shows on broadcast TV in years is on a network where it’s chances of survival aren’t great.


“Idol” champ Candice Glover to star in a Hallmark Channel movie
She’ll star in “Northpole,” as part of the cable network’s “Countdown to Christmas” in November.


Julianna Margulies: My worst-ever audition was for “ER”
She originally didn’t read for Carol Hathaway. PLUS: Carrie Preston talks about her “Good Wife” return.


“Boy Meets World’s” Eric Matthews has lunch with Mr. Feeny
Will Friedle and William Daniels are still close.


Happy 40th birthday, Grace Park!
The “Hawaii Five-0” star and “Battlestar Galactica” alum is thankful for the birthday wishes.


Syfy channel wants to go back to traditional sci-fi
Does that mean the end of “Sharknado”?


Booted “Idol” contestant Ben Briley criticizes the judges for being inconsistent
Briley also says: "It really bothers me when people say, ‘You need to stay in your vein,’ because that is the biggest load of crap I’ve ever heard in my life."


NBC’s “Crisis” is for those who found CBS’ “Hostages” too believable
“Crisis,” says Hank Stuever, "is a prime example of just how much spaghetti a new drama is required to throw at the wall these days in order to get anything to stick; it’s as if no one will watch a new TV drama unless there is a heightened degree of the ludicrous in every frame.” PLUS: “Crisis” needs more craziness, “Crisis” was a pleasant surprise, and it does give viewers a reason to care.

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<p>Gareth Edwards seemed exhausted but excited when we sat down to talk about his vision for the new &#39;Godzilla&#39;</p>

Gareth Edwards seemed exhausted but excited when we sat down to talk about his vision for the new 'Godzilla'

Credit: HitFix

Gareth Edwards talks about the responsibility of bringing 'Godzilla' into the 21st century

Just how hard is it to design an icon that's endured for 60 years?

My kids are growing up movie crazy, but for the most part, they don't really get the whole idea of a film festival. They just see the trips I take as "those things that make Daddy busy." For the first time ever, Toshi was very jealous and annoyed by something I did at a festival thanks to the special "Godzilla" event that was held at SXSW this week.

Little wonder. Godzilla has been part of their imaginary life as long as they've been watching movies, and Toshi in particular has been head over heels in love with Godzilla from the first moment he saw him. We've watched at least a dozen of the Toho films, we've seen the "Mystery Science Theater" versions, we've been reading the "Godzilla Rules Of Earth" comics together, and there are tons of toys of not just Godzilla but the other Toho icons as well all over the house. There's only one movie poster in their room, and it's for the 1954 "Godzilla."

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