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I feel like I've been on the road nonstop for the last two months, and I'm leaving again for another trip on Saturday. Because of this, I'm hoping to spend most of August at home in Los Angeles, enjoying the end of the summer with my kids, especially since September means nearly a full month on the road at film festivals each year. There's the Toronto International Film Festival, and then there's Fantastic Fest.
For someone who doesn't go to festivals often, it would be hard to explain why Fantastic Fest remains my favorite film event each year even over Cannes or Sundance. I think every festival has a distinct identity, or at least the ones I attend do, and that's important. If you're just showing a bunch of movies, that's not a festival. If you're creating a curated experience that is designed to bombard an audience with awesome, that's a festival. And that's Fantastic Fest all over.
They typically announce their programming in waves, and today, we've got a look at the first batch of announced titles, with our thoughts punctuating the line-up.
"American Idol" sued by 10 black former contestants who claim producers are racist
The contestants include Corey Clark from Season 2 and Chris Golightly from Season 9. Their lawyer is seeking at least $25 million for each of his clients, alleging that producers were part of a "cruel and inhumane" scheme to dig up their arrest records and embarrass them on national TV.
Heidi Klum to play a mayor on "Parks and Rec"
The "America's Got Talent" judge will guest on the season premiere as the mayor of a small town in Denmark who meets Leslie Knope in London.
New dad Jimmy Fallon thanks fans, will return with a new show tonight
"Late Night" aired a repeat yesterday after Fallon's wife gave birth to a baby girl.
"The Biggest Loser's" Stephanie Anderson gives birth
The birth of baby boy Dillon comes after she split from fellow "Loser" husband Sam Poueu.
Jason Sudeikis confirms to Letterman he's leaving "SNL"
"I'm definitely done," he says on tonight's Letterman. "I'm not coming back in the fall."
"Sons of Anarchy" returns Sept. 10 with a 90-minute episode
Also, "Sons" director Peter Weller will act this season, playing a former cop who has a run in with SAMCRO.
Ving Rhames to play Whoopi Goldberg's husband on Lifetime
He's joining the cable channel's adaptation of "A Day Late and a Dollar Short."
"Revolution" adds Nicole Ari Parker
She'll play a "strong and smart leader."
Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” spends its seventh week at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, giving it the longest tenure in the top spot on the pop chart this year. The song, which features T.I. and Pharrell, bests Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’s “Thrift Shop,” featuring Wanz, which was No. 1 for six weeks. Remarkably, the song, which has spawned some fun covers, is also still gaining in airplay and it tops Billboard’s Digital Songs sales chart for the eighth week.
Not faring so well is Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky,” which had been stuck at No. 2, blocked out of the top spot by “Lines.” This week, “Lucky” falls 2-4, as Miley Cyrus’s “We Can’t Stop” climbs 3-2, and Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive” holds at No. 3.
Bruno Mars’ “Treasure” rises 7-5 to land Mars his 10th top 5 hit in slightly more than 3 years.
Rounding out the Top 10, Macklemore & Lewis’s “Can’t Hold Us,” featuring Ray Dalton, slips 5-6, pushing Florida Georgia Line’s “Cruise,” featuring Nelly, down 6-7. Don’t feel too back for the country crossover duo as “Cruise” celebrates its 21st week at No. 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart, according to Billboard. It is now tied with Eddy Arnold’s “I’ll Hold You In My Heart (Till I Can Hold You In My Arms),” which also spent 21 weeks in the top spot on the country chart, in 1948, Hank Snow’s “I’m Moving On” in 1950, and Webb Pierce’s Jimmie Rodgers’ cover of “In The Jailhouse Now” in 1955 (of course, back then the methodology was very different, with jukebox play, radio playlists and sales combining to come up with the chart numbers).
Jay-Z’s “Holy Grail,” featuring Justin Timberlake, is at No. 8. Anna Kendrick’s “Cups” lifts one spot to No 9, trading places with Timberlake’s “Mirrors.”
Phish will kick off a fall tour, its first autumn outing since 2010, with a three-night stand at Hampton (Va.) Coliseum, Oct. 18-20. Tickets go on sale Aug. 8.
The two-week outing is confined to the east coast, as the jam band is spending its five-week summer tour on the West Coast (sorry about that fly-over states).
Phish recently released two live sets: the six-CD set, “Ventura,” culled rom shows in 1997 and 1998, and “Live Bait Vol. 9,” nine tracks available for free here.
Phish front man Trey Anastasio recently revealed that the band is working on its first studio album since 2009's "Joy." In a piece that ran July 2, he told PBS NewsHour that the band was collaborating on the lyrics. Last year, keyboardist Page McConnell gave Rolling Stone a few details about the new project: "We're trying to create something that really comes from the four of us," he said, adding the band was going with spontaneity in an effort to "create something more in the moment." No release date has been announced.
Fall PHISH dates:
10/18 Hampton, VA Hampton Coliseum
10/19 Hampton, VA Hampton Coliseum
10/20 Hampton, VA Hampton Coliseum
10/22 Rochester, NY Blue Cross Arena
10/23 Glens Falls, NY Glens Falls Civic Center
10/25 Worcester, MA DCU Center
10/26 Worcester, MA DCU Center
10/27 Hartford, CT XL Center
10/29 Reading, PA Sovereign Center
10/31 Atlantic City, NJ Boardwalk Hall
11/01 Atlantic City, NJ Boardwalk Hall
11/02 Atlantic City, NJ Boardwalk Hall
"Sons of Anarchy" has traditionally debuted in the fall on FX, and that pattern will continue this year with the sixth season premiering on Tuesday, September 10 at 10 p.m.
It'll be another 90-minute episode for the motorcycle club drama; FX gives a lot of creative leeway in general with its shows, and especially to its most popular one, which last year did several 90-minute installments.
Fienberg covered the show's recent Comic-Con appearance, which included creator Kurt Sutter discussing the endgame for a series that at least tentatively is set to end with its seventh season, as well as talk about what happens now that Jax has ascended to the throne, what happens now for Gemma, Tara, Clay and company, and more.
When I moderated Universal's Comic-Con panel this year, we covered two films. "Kick-Ass 2" and "Riddick" were perfect fits for that crowd, and I can tell you that we didn't have a spare minute up on that stage. Just giving those two films their time was frantic, so there wasn't room for Universal to bring and showcase anything else in that hour.
If there was any other film I would have been interested in having up there, it would have been "47 Ronin." This is, by most published accounts so far, a deeply troubled movie. This was supposed to be in theaters in November of 2012, but instead, that's right around the time Universal took the film away from director Carl Erik Rinsch. Some people are reporting the film's budget as high as $225 million, with Universal officially stating it's $175 million, which is still GIGANTIC.
Will the first Lady Gaga single from “ARTPOP” be “Applause?” That’s the hint we seem to be getting from Momma Monster.
A photo posted to LittleMonsters by LG’s make-up artist Tara Savelo, features Lady Gaga, with her hand purposefully obscuring the artwork, sitting at an easel, painting what could be the single cover. At the top is the word “Applause.” A caption says “26 days,” which, as her fans know, is when the first single will drop. That would lead us right up to Aug. 19 for this royal birth.
[More after the jump...]
"Killing Kennedy," based on the book by Bill O'Reilly, is set to premiere in November to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Kennedy. It's an important anniversary, of course, and one that seemed to be front of mind for the talent appearing to promote the move at the 2013 TCAs. Rob Lowe (President Kennedy), Ginnifer Goodwin (Jacqueline Kennedy), Will Rothhaar (Lee Harvey Oswald), Michelle Trachtenberg (Marina Oswald), Jack Noseworthy (Bobby Kennedy) and director Nelson McCormick and writer Kelly Masterson talked mastering iconic characters, Bill O'Reilly and "weird, bizarre details."
Ex-NBC boss thinks Jay Leno is hiding his sadness over leaving "The Tonight Show"
This time, Leno is said to be perfectly content with his exit. To which Don Ohlmeyer, NBC's West Coast boss in the '90s, says: "Oh, bullsh*t. I'm sure Jay says that to everybody who asks him, but for the Jay that I know, his heart has to be breaking about this."
Bravo orders "Game of Crowns" -- a beauty pageant reality show
Will Bravo be able to keep the "Game of Crowns" title?
Cary Elwes signs on for USA's "Horizon"
He'll play a mysterious man in World War II-era Washington, D.C.
Discovery hopes "Porter Ridge" is its "Duck Dynasty"
Discovery Channel is entering the rural reality TV field with a show about an isolated Indiana community that features a guy named "The Bear Man."
Rob Lowe likens playing JFK to playing Hamlet
"Actors play Hamlet all of the time," the "Killing Kennedys" star told reporters at TCA. "A lot of people will play JFK in the future. He's one of our great American icons... You just look at what you can bring individually as an actor."
Donald Trump joins Vine
"The Apprentice" star made his debut on the six-second video service to urge Anthony Weiner to stay off Vine.
Google unveils Chromecast -- is this the future of TV?
The tiny $35 device plugs into your TV's HDMI port, allowing you to stream content from your computer or mobile device.
CBS unveils key art for its fall comedies
Check out "The Millers" in the bathroom.
Seth Meyers' 30 Rock ID photo is from 2001 when he joined "SNL"
"I'm really desperate to try to keep it until I'm, like, 65 years old," says Meyers whose new "Late Night" show will originate from 30 Rock.
Aubrey Plaza talks to Conan about masturbating on her new movie
The "Parks and Rec" star talks about her "nice scene." PLUS: GQ puts Plaza in a bikini.
Honestly, "Hot Knife" was my least favorite cut from Fiona Apple's last album "The Idler Wheel..." -- though that whole set was my favorite from 2012. But Apple has reunited with director Paul Thomas Anderson for her latest music video, and now I like the song a little bit more than I did.
All the vocal parts and the kettledrum were filmed individually and then laid out like a round, which is essentially all the minimalist track is. Footage of Apple's gorgeous (lip-synced) delivery unwinds in black and white and an area of sepia and color tones. I like how, in her main melody clips, you can't see her hands, for some reason. It's kind of mesmerizing.