Latest Blog Posts

<p>Bruce Springsteen</p>

Bruce Springsteen

Credit: AP Photo

Bruce Springsteen pays moving tribute to 'hero' Pete Seeger in concert

Who will fill Seeger's shoes?

Bruce Springsteen paid tribute to Pete Seeger during his concert in Cape Town last night.

Read Full Post
<p>Spike Jonze on the set of &quot;Her.&quot;</p>

Spike Jonze on the set of "Her."

Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

Get closer to 'Her' with new behind-the-scenes featurette

A nice insight into Spike Jonze's unique creatiuve process

"Gravity" may still be my favourite of the Best Picture nominees by a long chalk, but there's no film I'm happier to see in the mix than "Her" -- Spike Jonze's wistful 21st-century love story was perceived by many as being a little too cool for the Academy, but its healthy haul of five nominations suggests its bittersweet charms may not be quite as socially or generationally specific as you might think. Meanwhile, I'm glad voters also noticed what an immaculately crafted piece it is: those nominations for Best Production Design and Original Score are among my favorites of this year's field.

Read Full Post

A snowstorm has turned Atlanta into 'The Walking Dead'

A snowstorm has turned Atlanta into "The Walking Dead"
The city looks as barren as the AMC series, thanks to a few inches of snow.

Peyton Manning was "devastated" when "The Sopranos" ended -- he's now addicted to "Boardwalk Empire"

"I'm a ‘Sopranos' guy," the Denver Broncos QB said at this morning's Super Bowl press conference. He adds: "When 'Boardwalk' came out, that was a big deal for me... I wish it were a little longer. I'm having a hard time getting through the postseason without it. I don't think the ('Boardwalk') season is long enough. I've been struggling without Nucky and the guys."

Mark Wahlberg will host the Kids' Choice Awards

The 42-year-old "Lone Survivor" star will lead this year's ceremony airing on March 29.

Judge orders Nicollette Sheridan to get a new "Desperate Housewives" trial

Sheridan's lawsuit is getting new life.

South Africa is getting a 24-hour Oscar Pistorius murder trial channel
A cable provider is going all out in its coverage of the former Olympian.

Jerry Seinfeld's "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee" has been watched by more than 25 million

Jerry's reaction: "it's gotten completely out of hand."

Sean Hayes didn't get to film his "Will & Grace" reunion with Megan Mullally

Mulally's guest spot on "Sean Saves the World" was on the verge of being shot when NBC opted to shut down production.

Budweiser's Super Bowl ad will feature a puppy kissing a horse
Watch a preview of the heart-melting ad.

CBS shows will stay on Amazon
CBS has signed a deal to keep shows like "The Good Wife" and "Star Trek" on Amazon's streaming service.

Read Full Post
<p>Charlotte Gainsbourg in &quot;Nymphomaniac: Volume Two.&quot;</p>

Charlotte Gainsbourg in "Nymphomaniac: Volume Two."

Credit: Magnolia Pictures

New trailer for 'Nymphomaniac: Volume Two' offers more of the exciting same

No nudity in this one, but plenty of Talking Heads

[UPDATE: Unfortunately, this video has been removed at the distributor's request.]

You can't stop what's, er, coming. As I made clear in my review last week, the first part of Lars von Trier's "Nymphomaniac" was one of my highlights of the Sundance Film Festival, delivering all the brazen daring, operatic beauty and discomfiting hilarity any von Trier fan could want. Having not seen the entire beast like some of my colleagues, Volume Two is now top of my Most Anticipated list, and this new international trailer promises more of the same -- in the best possible way.

Read Full Post
<p>Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Ejiofor in &quot;12 Years a Slave.&quot;</p>

Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Ejiofor in "12 Years a Slave."

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures

'12 Years a Slave' tops UK Regional Critics' vote

Public vote 'Philomena' the year's best British film

A reader asked me the other day if the UK has county-divided critics' awards to match the multitude of local US groups. The answer is no -- the nation isn't quite big enough for such madness -- but while the London Critics' Circle (which hands out its awards on Sunday) remains the highest-profile British critics' award, other UK critics and bloggers have banded together to form the UK Regional Critics' Awards, also known as the Richard Attenborough Awards. Despite the "regional" remit, their awards were presented in London last night, and also included a number of public-voted categories. No big surprises, and more good news for "12 Years a Slave"; check out the list after the jump, and keep up with the season at The Circuit.

Read Full Post

ABC orders Henry Winkler's 'The Winklers,' from the creator of 'Everybody Loves Raymond'

ABC orders Henry Winkler's "The Winklers," from the creator of "Everybody Loves Raymond"
The "Happy Days" alum is expected to star in a comedy pilot based on his real-life relationship with his son-in-law. Winkler's son, Max, will serve as executive producer, along with "Raymond's" Phil Rosenthal and "New Girl's" Jake Johnson.

Read Full Post
<p>Sullivan Stapleton of &quot;300: Rise of an Empire&quot;</p>

Sullivan Stapleton of "300: Rise of an Empire"

Credit: Warner Brothers

Sullivan Stapleton and Eva Green get fierce on the '300: Rise of an Empire' set

'Strike Back' and 'Casino Royale' stars discuss their historical epic
SOFIA, BULGARIA. I've learned few things from my years of movie and TV set visits, but one thing I know for certain: Never dine at an all-you-can-eat buffet with the Greek army.
It's early September 2012 at the Nu Boyana film studio on the outskirts of Sofia, Bulgaria and the Greek army is massing upon a repast of stewed steak, heavily sauced meatballs and unadorned, flaky white fish. 
There are also potatoes, rolls and platters of deserts, but looking at the soldiers flanking me on all sides, I have my doubts that any carbohydrates are being consumed in the meal room for "300: Rise of an Empire."
Craft service tends to be the great equalizer on a movie set, bringing together the burly Teamsters, wiry technicians and all but the highest echelon of stars, but on the "300: Rise of an Empire" set, there are some people out to make a point and that point involves more sit-ups and push-ups than I can wrap my mind around. 
Apparently there was a very recent truce called on the set, because buff Greeks and buff Persians are dining side-by-side. All are covered with dirt and dramatically oozing wounds and many have backs marked with loud red whip-lashes. Humility plays no role in this feast, as the warriors chow down in outfits that would make an Olympic diver blush. Oddly, there's a gender divide when it comes to modesty as a stunning woman at the soda station fills her cup dressed in a small, tightly cinched bathrobe. 
Read Full Post
<p>Eva Green of &quot;300: Rise of an Empire&quot;</p>

Eva Green of "300: Rise of an Empire"

Credit: Warner Brothers

Set Visit: '300: Rise of an Empire' filmmakers hope to build on '300'

Director Noam Murro and producers talk from the movie's Bulgarian set
SOFIA, BULGARIA. "Show no mercy and give no quarter!" bellows Eva Green, as she strides confidently out of a ship's state room, through a sea of masked men. Wearing a badass, fringed leather tunic with metallic highlights in front and spikes poking out of her back, she paces towards the camera once, twice, three times.
"Today, the last Greek ships will be destroyed," she announces over and over again. That first line remains the same with every reading, but Green keeps varying the second line, barking the order in different directions, varying the clarity and the emphasis. 
After each take, Green returns to her character's state room. Director Noam Murro isn't making refinements to Green's performance, though. The Persian queen Artemisia is assertive, loud and sexy and she's not the problem. The problem appears to be the obscured men referred to as proto-samurais. They're clad in heavy, layered armor and they're wearing matching versions of what seems to be a more bellicose version of the famed masks of Melpomene, the muse of tragedy. The masks, which come in several complicated pieces, are bedecked with threatening metal dreadlocks, so we may be comparing them to samurai, but a better antecedent might be The Predator. 
It's hard in here for a proto-samurai. To begin with, they have to be giving expressive performances, even though their faces are completely covered and they're almost entirely immobile. They can't remove the masks wearing their gloves and they can't remove their gloves without the help of assistants. So between shots, some of the proto-samurai remain in full costume, while others get help from scurrying assistants so that they can get water or scratch an itch. 
It probably won't be the case when "300: Rise of an Empire" is released, but on this September day in 2012 at Sofia, Bulgaria's Nu Boyana Studios, the proto-samurai are the stars of the movie. 
Read Full Post

'Sons of Anarchy' vet Ron Perlman headed to Amazon

"Sons of Anarchy" vet Ron Perlman headed to Amazon

He's set to star in "Hand Of God," playing a hard-living judge who has a religious awakening.

Red Hot Chili Peppers' Flea deletes tweet threatening to expose his penis at Super Bowl halftime
"Anybody wanna see my c–k at the Super Bowl?" the 51-year-old bassist wrote in a tweet.

Jimmy Kimmel will reunite with Matt Damon and George Clooney for a "Monuments Men"-themed episode
Clooney hasn't been a guest on Kimmel since "Jimmy Kimmel Live's" launch night, while Damon will make his first appearance since hijacking the show last January. The Feb. 6 episode will also feature Bill Murray's Kimmel debut.

CNN will air a Jay Leno special

"Jay Leno: Mr. Comedy" will look back at "The Tonight Show" host's career. It's scheduled for Friday at 10 pm, the same timeslot CNN aired a Justin Bieber special last week.

Gene Simmons will play himself on "CSI"

The KISS rocker will be part of a rock-and-roll themed murder mystery.

"Supernatural" has its most-watched episode in 4 years
Last night's 2.8 million was the CW show's biggest audience since 2010.

The State of the Union Speech became "Duck Dynasty" vs. "Mad Men"

The dueling callouts, says James Poniewozik, "said a lot about the two dueling visions of America and its history."

Louis CK recalls getting $5,000 from Jon Stewart to make his 1998 movie
The black and white film, "Tomorrow Night," featuring Steve Carell, JB Smoove, Robert Smigel and Amy Poehler, is now available for download for $5 from Louis CK's website.

"Hannibal" books Jeremy Davies and Chris Diamantopoulos

They'll both guest in Season 2.

"The Walking Dead Escape" tour is traveling across the country

The Comic-Con hit will visit Houston, Miami, Louisiana and other cities.

Jennifer Lawrence is a huge fan of "TOWIE," the UK's "Jersey Shore"
"The Only Way Is Essex," she says," is "ridiculously amazing."

Check out Madonna & Miley filming "MTV Unplugged"

See them both stick out their tongues for tonight's special.

ALF is now starring in an '80s-themed Delta in-flight safety film
The film also features Atari, Teddy Ruxpin and Rubik's Cube.

"Full House" guys reunite on "GMA" to promote their Super Bowl ad
Uncle Jesse, Danny and Joey were also photobombed by Rhianna.

Read Full Post
<p>George&nbsp;Clooney and Bill Murray in &quot;The&nbsp;Monuments Men&quot;</p>

George Clooney and Bill Murray in "The Monuments Men"

Credit: Sony Pictures

George Clooney's 'Monuments Men' was smart to dodge the Oscar season

A movie like this that avoids the bait would have been devoured

As Oscar's phase one drew to a close and the nominations were set to be unveiled, the film press corps was getting its first look at one movie that dodged all of that commotion last year: George Clooney's "The Monuments Men." It's set for release next week and with its arrival, one can only ask: was Sony smart to move it out of the season?

The easy answer is "yes." This isn't the awards film it might have been. But that's not a value judgment or a criticism. Let me explain.

Read Full Post
<p>President Obama delivers his State of the Union address</p>

President Obama delivers his State of the Union address

Credit: Larry Downing/AP

TV Ratings: CBS, NBC lead State of the Union Tuesday, while 'Supernatural' rises

'NCIS' repeat, 'The Biggest Loser' are Tuesday's tops
Fast National ratings for Tuesday, January 28, 2014.
On a night all of the networks -- other than The CW, of course -- turned over much of their primetime blocks to President Obama's State of the Union address, a repeat of "NCIS" led CBS to an overall win, while "The Biggest Loser" put NBC on top with young viewers.
Network State of the Union numbers were low enough that The CW's "The Originals" and "Supernatural" were able to tie with FOX for third in the key demo for the night, with "Supernatural" posting gains. It was, in fact, the most watched "Supernatural" since 2010 and its best rated episode among teens since 2009.
On to the not-especially-interesting numbers, which will almost certainly change due to time zones and live numbers and other silliness.
Read Full Post
<p>&quot;Rick &amp;&nbsp;Morty.&quot;</p>

"Rick & Morty."

Credit: Adult Swim

Review: Dan Harmon has another winner with Adult Swim's 'Rick & Morty'

'Community' creator and Justin Roiland present a disturbing, hilarious mad scientist saga

"Rick & Morty," the Adult Swim series co-created by Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland, premiered back in December when I was otherwise occupied. And as unfortunately sometimes happens, once I miss the premiere of a series, I miss it altogether. One of the few advantages of nursing a broken leg is that it's given me slightly more viewing time, and I used some of that to catch up on the series, including the latest episode, which I've embedded below. (The series regularly airs Mondays at 10:30, and Adult Swim's video site allows authenticated users to watch previous episodes.) A few thoughts on the series so far coming up just as soon as you take two strokes off my golf game...

Read Full Post