Latest Blog Posts

<p>It's easy to win an argument when your hat is staring at your opponent.</p>

It's easy to win an argument when your hat is staring at your opponent.

Credit: Walt Disney Pictures

The final 'Lone Ranger' trailer goes heavy on the myth and Johnny Depp

It's an Old West Batman that loves to smash up trains

Yep. That's a Gore Verbinski movie.

In the first weekly installation of our countdown to summer (you can see that here), I picked "The Lone Ranger" to write about because I just plain like the way Verbinski does what he does. I think sometimes it's that easy when it comes to this type of huge-canvass filmmaking. I've certainly had directors whose work did nothing for me who I've realized early on don't share any particular aesthetic common ground with me. And I've also seen plenty of filmmakers who prove early on that whatever secret version of film language they're speaking, it affects me, and I'm onboard, whatever the story or subject.

Verbinski shoots action I enjoy watching. I still think his most inspired moments came in "Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest," but there are things he does in the third "Pirates" and in "Rango" that are just preposterous, fun and frantic and impeccably staged. He is able to put all these things in motion and then catch them in the perfect way, and it's a gift that should not be discounted. Not everyone's capable of it, no matter what budget or support you give them.

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Listen to De La Soul's new song 'Get Away,' a comeback homage to Wu-Tang

Listen to De La Soul's new song 'Get Away,' a comeback homage to Wu-Tang

Wu meets weak MCs for a villainous re-entry

Irony included, De La Soul sampled Wu-Tang Clan's "Intro" to reintroduce themselves to the masses on new song "Get Away." As previously reported, it's the first time since 2004 that Kelvin Mercer (aka Posdnuos), David "Dave" Jolicoeur (aka Trugoy) and Vincent "Maseo" Mason all showed up in the same place at the same time to making an album, marking this tune a bonafide turn at a comeback.

The legendary hip-hop trio get dark on this “Get Away (feat. the Spirit of the Wu),” a good-will return to music-making in an uncharacteristic villainous tone. As the crew's DJ says, it takes square aim at today's watered-down MCs.

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<p>Nora Ephron</p>

Nora Ephron

Credit: AP Photo/Charles Sykes

Tribeca Film Festival introduces Nora Ephron Prize for female filmmakers

$25,000 prize will go to filmmaker who best embodies the spirit of Ephron

Nearly a year on from Nora Ephron's death, the caustic New York-based writer and filmmaker is still very much on the collective mind of her home city. Ephron's final play, "Lucky Guy" -- which Kris described as "perhaps the best thing [she] ever wrote" in his extensive appreciation last month -- is currently one of the hottest tickets on Broadway. Meanwhile, the Tribeca Film Festival, which kicks off today, is doing its own bit to honor her cinematic legacy.

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<p>Florence and the Machine at the 2012 Austin City Limits Festival.&nbsp;</p>

Florence and the Machine at the 2012 Austin City Limits Festival. 

Credit: AP Photo

Listen: Florence + The Machine's new song for 'The Great Gatsby' in full

Hear snippets of the other songs on the Jay-Z-curated soundtrack

If someone has to give Daisy Buchanan a musical voice, I’m not sure I’d choose Florence + The Machine for the gig, given “The Great Gatsby’s” quintessential Americanism, but the British group certainly brings Daisy’s intensity on  “Over The Love.”

[More after the jump...]

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Jeremy Sisto in "Suburgatory"

 Jeremy Sisto in "Suburgatory"

Credit: ABC

Interview: Jeremy Sisto talks 'Suburgatory,' being wacky and indie film

The on-screen and off-screen nice guy talks tone, Tessa

Jeremy Sisto seems to be one of those genuinely nice, normal guys who, while common in the real world, are like ridiculously rare in Hollywood. So it's fitting that he's been playing nice, normal George on "Suburgatory," which has a two-part season finale tonight (Wed. April 17 at 8:00 p.m.). A while back I had a chance to visit the set and talk to Sisto about the show, George's relationships with Tessa and Dallas, and why he's looking forward to playing something other than George for a while. 

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<p>Of course this means I get my Raymond Chandler inspired series of 'Dexter Jettster' mystery movies where he solves murders while preparing short-order dishes.</p>

Of course this means I get my Raymond Chandler inspired series of 'Dexter Jettster' mystery movies where he solves murders while preparing short-order dishes.

Credit: Lucasfilm Ltd.

Disney promises one new 'Star Wars' film every summer starting in 2015

Just how many filmmakers are they planning to throw at this?

Alan Horn, the new Chairman of Walt Disney Pictures, took the stage at CinemaCon in Las Vegas today to announce an incredibly aggressive timetable for the "Star Wars" franchise. If they manage to pull it off, it will be almost unparalleled for this sort of big-ticket filmmaking.

According to Horn, we will indeed see the JJ Abrams "Star Wars Episode VII" in the summer of 2015, just in time for Disney to completely dominate that summer since they're also releasing "The Avengers 2" that year. In the following years, we will see one new "Star Wars" film every year, every summer, alternating between the stand-alone films that Disney has mentioned previously and the official episodes in the main franchise.

We'll have more analysis on this later this afternoon, but for now, this has got to be one of the most unrelenting schedules I've ever seen, and it all but guarantees that there will always be a "Star Wars" film shooting somewhere.

What a crazy, crazy world.

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<p>Wynona and Chuck of &quot;The Amazing Race&quot;</p>

Wynona and Chuck of "The Amazing Race"

Credit: CBS

Interview: Chuck & Wynona talk 'The Amazing Race'

Alabama team discusses their bickering Race experience
It was a roller-coaster end for "Amazing Race" Cardiac Kids Chuck & Wynona on Sunday (April 14) night's episode. 
After an early season run escaping elimination due to misadventures or injuries to other teams, the Alabama couple seemed destined to finally head home after a physically arduous Leg in Switzerland. Then a weird thing happened and YouTubers Meghan & Joey, working with a comfortable cushion, couldn't find a cab to the next Pit Stop and ended up walking. Chuck & Wynona, finished a cheese transportation task well behind, but successfully secured a cab and made it to Phil Keoghan in next-to-last. But then a sad thing happened and Chuck & Wynona were assessed a 30-minute penalty for the way they chose to transport that cheese. Ooops. That was all the time Joey & Meghan needed to stumble to the mat and send Chuck & Wynona packing.
As often happens, Chuck & Wynona left the Race in an episode that began with them both agreeing that they'd finally gotten comfortable and found a way to have fun on the show. 
In their exit interview, Chuck and Wynona discuss their bickering relationship both in real life and on "Amazing Race." Wynona talks about the injury we never saw, while they both explained what they got out of the "Amazing Race" experience.
Click through for the full Q&A...
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<p>Octavia Spencer in &quot;Fruitvale Station.&quot;</p>

Octavia Spencer in "Fruitvale Station."

Credit: The Weinstein Company

'Fruitvale' gets a new title: 'Fruitvale Station'

Sundance grand jury and audience award winner arrives in July

In somewhat surprising news, The Weinstein Company has modified the title to Sundance grand jury and audience award winner "Fruitvale."  The crowd-pleasing drama will now be known as "Fruitvale Station."

The feature film directorial debut of Ryan Coogler, "Fruitvale" follows the last day in the life of Oscar Grant (MIchael B. Jordan), a 22-year-old San Francisco area resident who was fatally shot by BART police officers the morning of Jan. 1, 2009.  Oscar winner Octavia Spencer, Chad Michael Murray, Kevin Durand, Melonie Diaz and Ahna O'Reilly also star and Spencer and Forest Whitaker are two of the film's producers.

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Watch: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis take over the world in 'Can't Hold Us' video

Watch: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis take over the world in 'Can't Hold Us' video

They've got a flag and they aren't afraid to plant it...anywhere

Today the “Thrift Shop,” tomorrow the world! In the new video for “Can't Hold Us," by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis featuring Ray Dalton, the rappers have left the surplus store far behind and are galavanting around the globe.

[More after the jump...]

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Emilie de Ravin on "Once Upon A Time"

 Emilie de Ravin on "Once Upon A Time"

Credit: ABC

Interview: Emilie de Ravin talks Belle going dark on 'Once Upon A Time'

The former "Lost" star says her new character isn't a bad girl

As Belle on "Once Upon A Time," Emilie de Ravin captured the smart, bookish but good-hearted essence of the familiar Disney character. Since Belle lost her memory, though, the actress gets to stretch a little. This Sunday we'll get to see more of Belle's new personality (created by Regina) after she leaves the hospital and is free to pursue her own interests. Her first stop isn't a library, either. I spoke to de Ravin about Lacey, why this barfly character isn't bad herself but is drawn to bad boys, and why she never wanted to be a Disney princess as a kid. 

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<p>&quot;Breaking Bad&quot;&nbsp;will return in August.</p>

"Breaking Bad" will return in August.

Credit: AMC

AMC announces 'Breaking Bad' will return in August

Final 8 episodes will be paired with 'Low Winter Sun' and 'Talking Bad' talk show

The final 8 episodes of "Breaking Bad" will debut on Sunday, August 11 at 9 p.m., one of many announcements made today at AMC's upfront presentation for advertisers.

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<p>Patton Oswalt guest stars on &quot;Parks and Recreation&quot;&nbsp;tomorrow night.</p>

Patton Oswalt guest stars on "Parks and Recreation" tomorrow night.

Credit: NBC

On 'Parks and Recreation,' Patton Oswalt gets his 'Star Wars' nerd on

In an extended outtake from tomorrow night's first episode, comedian riffs for 8 minutes about Luke Skywalker and... Thanos?

Tomorrow night, NBC is airing back-to-back episodes of "Parks and Recreation" at 9 and 9:30 ("The Office" gets the week off), and they're two of my favorite installments of the season. And yet the funniest part of either one isn't going to air at all.

In the first episode, titled "Article Two," Patton Oswalt guest stars as another Pawnee crackpot who gets upset at Leslie's proposal to eliminate some of the more outdated/racist/sexist laws on the town charter. Taking advantage of the laws still on the books, he launches into a citizen filibuster discussing his proposal for the J.J. Abrams-directed "Star Wars" sequel, which somehow turns into a "Star Wars"/Marvel Comics mash-up halfway through.

In the episode itself, you hear a few lines of dialogue from it, but when the episode was filmed, "Parks" producer Dan Goor told Oswalt to just improvise something and they would edit it down as needed in the final cut. Oswald launched into an eight-minute rant that you can watch below. It's remarkable for the absolutely hardcore nerditry of it, for Oswalt's commitment to a bit that he knew would likely never air, and also for veteran improv comic Amy Poehler's gift for interrupting at just the right moments and with just the right observations. It's really remarkable. Enjoy, and I look forward to discussing both "Article Two" and "Jerry's Scrapbook" with you after they air tomorrow night.

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