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Dazed and Confused

Annapurna to produce Richard Linklater's 'Dazed' spiritual sequel

'That’s What I’m Talking About' is a baseball dramedy set in the 1980s

Richard Linklater grew into one of North America's premiere filmmaking voices with films like "Slacker," "Dazed and Confused," "School of Rock," "Bernie" and the "Before" trilogy, but it took this year's "Boyhood" for full approval from auteur connoisseur Megan Ellison. Deadline reports that Ellison's artistically-inclined production company Annapurna Pictures will produce Linklater's next film, what he refers to as a "spiritual sequel" to "Dazed."

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<p>Manhattan Love Story and A to Z</p>

Manhattan Love Story and A to Z

Credit: ABC/NBC

Fall TV reviews: 'Manhattan Love Story' & 'A to Z'

Cliches, gender stereotypes, and some likeable actors who need better material

The hot trend in TV dramas this fall is comic book adaptations, as every broadcast network but CBS will have at least one show based on a Marvel or DC title (with CBS likely following next year with its "Supergirl" pilot). If there's a hot trend in the new sitcoms (of which there aren't a ton), it's with a genre that's often been used to counterprogram comic book movies: the romantic comedy.

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<p>David Tennant and Anna Gunn of &quot;Gracepoint&quot;</p>

David Tennant and Anna Gunn of "Gracepoint"

Credit: FOX

Talking with David Tennant and Anna Gunn on the set of FOX's 'Gracepoint'

American accents, uncertain whodunits and a Scottish 'Breaking Bad' are discussed

VICTORIA, BRITISH COLUMBIA. This past spring, my tour of Fake American Police Precincts took me from Bemidji, Minnesota in Calgary for FX's "Fargo" to Gracepoint, California in Victoria, BC for FOX's "Gracepoint."

After avoiding incarceration in Bemidji, I find myself with two other reporters, a publicist and at least three or four hair-and-makeup professionals in Gracepoint's not-uncomfortable lock-up.

Once they have us behind bars, there's a very real chance that one of us will turn out to be the murderer in "Gracepoint," since a consistent refrain from the entire cast is that none of them know know whodunnit and the person behind the death of young Danny Solano won't be the same character who killed Danny Latimer in the original "Broadchurch."

It's early May on the "Gracepoint" set and they're finishing up paired production on episodes seven and eight and moving on to the climactic ninth and 10th episodes, but nobody has seen a script for those last episodes and nobody is admitting to outside knowledge.

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Recap: 'Sleepy Hollow' - 'The Kindred' by any other name is Frankenstein's monster
Credit: FOX

Recap: 'Sleepy Hollow' - 'The Kindred' by any other name is Frankenstein's monster

Real talk: Witches are kind of powerless in this universe.

By the end of last week’s Season Two premiere, Abbie had been rescued, Jenny had been rescued, and Katrina was still ensnared by Headless. Well, two out of three damsels no longer in distress ain’t bad? Unless Captain Irving counts (he totally does), in which case the distressed damsel to rescue ratio drops to an abysmal 50% success rate.

Can our heroes get the team back together by the end of “The Kindred”?

*************

The world is upside-down, literally, as Headless and his horse canter across the moonlit night. Headless is riding towards a circle of fire, and sticks, and human skulls. Because he is nothing if not a stickler for evil traditionalism. Katrina is with him, and it doesn’t take long until she’s tied to the altar at the center of the circle, set to be sacrificed/married while her son officiates. 

Henry pricks his mom’s hand and she is blood-bound to Headless. Gross. But right before they can be pronounced husband and recently decapitated wife…Ichabod wakes up. IT WAS ALL A DREAM! 

Now we’ll never know who shot J.R.

But the dream was more of a premonition since Crane has been doing research. According to the codices of exposition, Headless is totally going to bind himself to Katrina in unholy matrimony. Abbie cracks a joke about the wedding industrial complex and Ichabod gets to be offended that the sacred right of marriage has been turned into a billion dollar industry and fodder for reality TV. Abbie declines to point out that in Crane’s heyday, most marriages were more business deals than love affairs. Because she’s a better person than me.

Instead she distracts Ichabod before he can get fired up into an apoplectic “Back in my day,” rant, by asking him where Headless might be keeping Katrina. After all, before he was the fourth Horseman, he was just plain old Abraham Van Brunt. Crane totally knew him as a person and should be able to figure out where his ex-buddy would be hiding. But Abbie can’t stick around to hold Crane’s hand through it, she has to go meet the new LADY sheriff.

WHERE THE EVER-LIVING HELL IS ORLANDO JONES!?

Abbie missed roll call on the first day of school but that’s okay because she knows Sheriff Leena Reyes. Or more specifically, the Sheriff knows Abbie. Mills was too small to remember, but back when Reyes was an officer, she responded a few times when Abbie’s mom called the police…or had the police called on her. The nature of the disturbances is left vague. If I were a bettin’ woman, I’d say they involved demons but nobody believed her.

Anyway, Sheriff Reyes is tough as nails. She’s dealt with border patrol and drug cartels who leave body parts behind as warnings, so she’s not about to be spooked by some lone serial cop killer who decapitates people. Unlike Captain Irving, Reyes is going to restore sanity to Sleepy Hollow.

Excuse me while I laugh until the end of time. Oh man, poor newbie!

While Abbie was introducing us to this season’s non-believer, Ichabod figured out where Headless took his wife. To the family estate. Wow, really? You didn’t IMMEDIATELY think of that? Worst. Detective. Ever. 

Anyway, we get a quick flashback to the emerald necklace Abraham gave Katrina when they were betrothed, in case you forgot that Ichabod stole his best friend’s girl. This is what happens when the wish from “Jessie’s Girl” is granted. Your ex-best friend makes a deal with Satan to be come an immortal warrior of Death to avenge getting cock-blocked.

On their way to the Van Brunt estate, Abbie hedges that maybe they’ve lost focus on the big picture here. Trying to get Crane laid isn’t exactly going to stop Moloch from heralding the end of times. Ichabod points out Katrina is a super powerful witch and they need her help, despite doing just fine without her up until this point.

Look, I’m just gonna say it. We’re all thinking it. If Katrina was that powerful, she wouldn’t be playing budget Princess Peach. Self-saving is kind of what powerful witches do, isn’t it?

By the time Crane and Mills find the old Van Brunt carriage house, it is the dead of night because time in Sleepy Hollow is wonky as hell. Death’s horse — whom I shall be referring to as Binky from here on out — is outside, so they know this is the right place. Crane catches sight of his wife and is ready to bullrush the place but Abbie is all, “Calm down kamikaze. Let’s go back to Cabin Control and get a plan that doesn’t involve instant death.”

Our heroes make a tactical retreat. Again, pointing out that Jenny…boring old non-magical human Jenny…would’ve escaped from the Horseman of War four times over by now. Get it together, Katrina.

Speaking of Jenny, she’s back at Cabin Control with the Scooby gang to figure out their plan. Turns out Katrina’s coven of witches had been in league with Ben Franklin to stitch together a creature powerful enough to match the Horseman of Death. They called it the Kindred, but it’s totally Frankenstein’s monster. Wait, no. It’s Franklinstein’s monster! Unfortunately, they were never able to turn on their abomination because they needed something from the Horsemen of Death to power it. Without magical batteries, it’s just a super disturbing doll.

Meanwhile, Henry has moved into the creepy house from last season. But he’s not there long before Moloch comes a calling and we’re back in Purgatory. Like any lenient parent, Moloch finally remembered he should punish failure, but the message is kind of diluted when you wait that long to dish out punishment. Rookie parent mistake. Moloch is all blah, blah, blah, I’ll find my own way the mortal realm. Blah, blah, blah, don’t fail me again.

Whatever, dad.

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Sexually unapologetic women are all over TV these days: From 'Outlander' to 'Orphan Black'
Credit: Starz

Sexually unapologetic women are all over TV these days: From 'Outlander' to 'Orphan Black'

Study: Tweeting while watching TV can leave you with fewer brain cells

Sexually unapologetic women are all over TV these days: From “Outlander” to “Orphan Black"
The Starz series, with its “revolutionary” wedding episode, joins a several recent shows "that treat the sexual activities of their leading ladies with refreshing matter-of-factness and genuine interest,” says Maureen Ryan. She adds: "But almost lost amid this welcome expansion of protagonists is a really important fact: In these narratives, sexual women are not shamed by the shows themselves for their desires. The women own their sexuality and the narratives are interested in exploring their desires -- and in judging their mistakes, carnal and otherwise, without stealthily blaming them for being sexual in the first place."


Study: Tweeting while watching TV can leave you with fewer brain cells
University of Sussex researchers found that "people who used a higher number of media devices concurrently also had  smaller grey matter density in the part of the brain known as the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), the region notably responsible for cognitive and emotional control functions.”


Report: Rosie O’Donnell and Whoopi Goldberg got into a shouting match in front of “The View” audience
Rosie apparently wasn’t happy when Whoopi interrupted her to go to a commercial break on last Thursday’s show.


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<p>Jada Pinkett Smith in Gotham</p>

Jada Pinkett Smith in Gotham

Credit: FOX

Review: 'Gotham' - 'Selina Kyle'

Gordon and Bullock hunt kidnappers who are targeting homeless kids — like the young Catwoman

A review of tonight's "Gotham" coming up just as soon as I'm a monkey riding a racehorse...

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Ben Affleck and Carrie Coon on keeping 'Gone Girl' and 'The Leftovers' secrets

Ben Affleck and Carrie Coon on keeping 'Gone Girl' and 'The Leftovers' secrets

Plus: Who knew David Fincher was such a lovely guy?

NEW YORK — Secrets are big business in Hollywood. Letting spoilers get out about your upcoming movie or a TV series can impact whether people actually watch and/or diminish interest in buying tickets. So it's no surprise that even with movies based on popular novels like "Gone Girl," where all the secrets can easily be found in print, everyone involved is trying to keep things quiet. Even if the film's plot might not be that different than the book.

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Maroon 5's music video for 'Animals' will be the most disturbing thing you'll watch all day

Maroon 5's music video for 'Animals' will be the most disturbing thing you'll watch all day

Think twice about your Top 40

Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine does a disgusting and disturbing acting turn in the band's new music video for "Animals," which could seriously cause you nightmares. Co-starring supermodel Behati Prinsloo (Levine's wife), the clip features Levine as a psychotic and literal butcher, who becomes obsessed with his beautiful customer and starts stalking her. He finds out where she lives, snaps pics without her consent, has grand delusions of bedding her and having the bestest, sexiest blood-soaked sex with her.

Unlike Maroon 5's horrendous "Misery" music video, this little ditty shoots for at least some gritty realism, with Levine's character trying to actually make a move on his -- as the song describes her -- "prey." She rejects him.

This is a character who owns a bunch of knives with an unhealthy relationship with meat, mind you. Sex and violence combine in what are ultimately these delusions, but hint at the possible rape and bloody murder for the characters after the tape stops rolling.

I can't say that Levine's willingness to appear as a mentally ill predator of unsuspecting women is "brave," per se; the video's gaze falls repeatedly on his and her stunning mostly naked bodies, a pretty cheesecake move, particularly with one's wife. I'm particularly stunned, though, at how game director Sameul Bayer is presenting (without preaching or commentary) very grotesque, gory cinematography along with the scenes of sexualization, an excessive pouring-out of blood over their unbelievable coitus. And how bad it makes Levine look.

It's an extremely confrontational, and purposefully provocative video, despite its most absurd, asshole-ish elements. While we crown our celebrities as -- say -- People's Sexiest Men Alive, or Victoria's Secret Angels, it's not like we really know them. Similarly, our biggest pop songs and stars use predatory lyrics and we accept them wholecloth or at least as part of the norm. Persona and person and character blend.

"But don't deny the animal / That comes alive when I'm inside you... Baby, I'm preying on you tonight / Hunt you down eat you alive / Just like animals / Maybe you think that you can hide / I can smell your scent from miles," Levine croons. This song is a Top 40 staple, right this minute. Give that a think, and how the conception of those lyrics gives way to this gross visualization.

It's tells a story, I'd argue, that has crossed the minds of many women, women even who are fans of Maroon 5: that the man with the neckbeard at the club whose flirtations you reject will come back and murder you.

This is to say, even the lightest, silliest, most exaggerated or heavy-handed pop music sometimes dares to challenge the status quo with something disgusting or heartbreaking. This song is very disturbing, and this promotional tool (the video) forces the viewer to just think about it. It is up to us -- fans, viewers, critics -- to accept or deny the turn. It makes pop music complicated, if you want it to be.

A video like this forces that challenge. Remarkably, even for a band like Maroon 5.

Samuel Bayer has directed other interesting -- if not iconic -- music videos for artists like Green Day, Nirvana, David Bowie, Garbage, Sheryl Crow, Marilyn Manson and more. "Animals" is off of Maroon 5's newest album "V."

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<p>Joaquin Phoenix in &quot;Inherent Vice&quot;</p>

Joaquin Phoenix in "Inherent Vice"

Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

Go ahead and laugh out loud during this 'Inherent Vice' trailer a few times

The film premieres at the New York Film Festival this weekend

Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice" is set to premiere at the New York Film Festival within the week. It might be a subversive addition to the race or, like some have been surmising, it might not be an awards season player at all. But who cares? The trailer just dropped and, uh, it looks awesome!

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Robots and Bay-hem loom large in 'Transformers: Age Of Extinction' concept art
Credit: Paramount Pictures

Robots and Bay-hem loom large in 'Transformers: Age Of Extinction' concept art

Want to see what Optimus Prime's packing under the hood?

One of my favorite parts of any filmmaking process, especially on big giant science-fiction or fantasy films, is the design process when illustrators work to figure out the visual signature of a film.

As Paramount gears up to release "Transformers: Age Of Extinction" on Blu-ray and DVD tomorrow, they sent over a fistful of the artwork that was created to help pin down the look of the movie. Sure, it's a sequel, but there were so many things that had to be redesigned and so many new characters that had to be introduced that they had as much work to do here as they would have on any original film.

You'll see a lot of environmental stuff in these images as they worked to find the look of the Knight Ship and some of the inhabitants of that ship, and you'll see studies on several of the new Transformers. I like the concept art of the Bumble-Bee battle in the streets of downtown Hong Kong a lot.

Say what you will about Michael Bay, but it's clear looking at this art that this is a guy who pushes his design team to dream as big as possible.

"Transformers: Age Of Extinction" is in stores tomorrow.

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Larry David: 'I haven’t given up the hope' for another 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' season
Credit: HBO

Larry David: 'I haven’t given up the hope' for another 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' season

Lena Dunham tweets she’ll compensate opening acts on her book tour

Larry David: “I haven’t given up the hope” for another “Curb Your Enthusiasm” season
The crowd erupted Sunday night when David made that comment about “Curb” in a Q&A session with David Steinberg. "If I don't get that kind of feedback, honestly, I wouldn't have thought of (bringing it back) any more," he added. "I actually feel badly I don't have shows for them."


George Zimmerman’s family wanted to get him a reality show to “rebrand” his image
Zimmerman’s family felt the Neighborhood Watch volunteer who shot and killed Trayvon Martin could have his image rehabilitated via reality television. "I learned a lot from watching 'Keeping up with the Kardashians,’” said his brother, Robert Zimmerman Jr., in an interview with GQ.


Lena Dunham tweets she’ll compensate opening acts on her book tour
"Some good points were raised,” she says of a Gawker report pointing out how much she was making from her book tour, "and I've ensured that all opening acts will be compensated for their time, their labor and their talents.”


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Steve Aoki talks 'Neon Future,' film work and that one time he was almost in 'Tropic Thunder'
Credit: AP Photo

Steve Aoki talks 'Neon Future,' film work and that one time he was almost in 'Tropic Thunder'

'Delirious (Boneless)' makes an impact on the charts for the DJ

Steve Aoki will celebrate the release of his new album "Neon Future I" tomorrow (Sept. 29), but has even more coming down the pike to get excited for

For the second time in his career, the star DJ and producer recently cracked the Hot 100 and the top 10 of Billboard's Dance/Electronic Songs tally as lead artist, with "Delirious (Boneless)" with Chris Lake and Tujamo featuring Kid Ink. You can check that out below.

Furthermore, his "Neon Future" will see its sequel in 2015, with all new club tracks and wall-to-wall bangers.

In Januaray, Aoki and his family story will be the spotlight of a new documentary premiering from David Gelb, ("Jiro Dreams of Sushi"), title to-be-announced, via Relativity. For two years, Aoki has kept his own cameraman in his employ, shooting night after night of sold out residencies, massive festival gigs, and, obviously, all of the cakings.

If you're confused about the latter, it's an Aoki gig trademark, where fans will suddenly find themselves covered in sheet cake, which the DJ himself throws into the crowds. It was introduced after Aoki had been literally riding an inflatable raft on top of his audiences.

"I needed something new," Aoki told me, of that shift in audience participation tactics.

The DJ spoke to HitFix and a small group of journalists from the set of the forthcoming "Point Break" remake earlier this month; he canceled a massive club gig to make his cameo in the film, which he said is representative of "the epicness of what 'Point Break' is to me."

Aoki also detailed why he didn't want to pass on this newest film gig: saying "no" had bit him in the butt before.

"In 2007, I got offered to play myself in a movie. [But] I had this gig, and it was paying me a lot of money at the time. The movie ended up being 'Tropic Thunder,'" he explained, saying it'd be for a scene when Tom Cruise's character Les Grossman hit "play" on his iPod, and the camera pans to an actual performer in his office. "I was supposed to be the slave DJ in the corner." Aoki, dejected, shook his head.

With all the cameramen that have actually been around lately, Aoki said "I feel pretty comfortable in front of a camera," that he's learned to "not get so stiff, just be myself." He said he's been inspired by what he's been seeing from teens at his own gigs, "You see these kids, going nuts, going ape-sh*t. Raging. That energy is so effective, you just want to always have that."

At some of his shows, he's seen other crowds or dissaffected club-goers "hanging, talking, socializing. At the festivals I'm playing now, these kids are so focused on the drop," he described, smiling. "This whole 'I don't give a f*ck about how I look, how I'm sweating, I just care about the music right now... I'm in my mid-30s, and I'm going nuts just like those little kids."

And, in case you were curious, Aoki has seen that Andy Samberg skit from "Saturday Night Live," the digital short "When Will The Bass Drop." And he loves it.

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