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'Murder Mystery' Is Most Popular Netflix Title in 2019, Company Says

'Murder Mystery' Is Most Popular Netflix Title in 2019, Company Says
As 2019 draws to a close, Netflix is offering its own taken on the "year-end list," unveiling its most popular releases to hit the steaming service in 2019 in the United States.

Taking the No. 1 spot on Netflix's overall "most popular" list — which includes film and TV — is Murder Mystery, the feature comedy that stars Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston as unwitting tourists who get wrapped up in a complicated murder plot. After the movie's June release, Netflix reported 30,869,863 accounts viewed Murder Mystery in its first three days, which represented ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter »

Tom Holland's 'Uncharted' Losing Director Travis Knight

Tom Holland's 'Uncharted' Losing Director Travis Knight
Uncharted is losing yet another director, with filmmaker Travis Knight likely exiting the video game adaptation. Knight, who made his directorial debut with last year's Bumblebee, would join a growing list of filmmakers to come and go on the project, including Shawn Levy and 10 Cloverfield Lane director Dan Trachtenberg.

Insiders blame scheduling issues for Knight's exit. Star Tom Holland will play Spider-Man in a Sony film due out July 16, 2021 — and the production of that movie may push Uncharted back from its current Dec. 18, 2020 date. Knight is unlikely to stick around.

Stars Holland and Mark Wahlberg are still ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter »

Steven Zaillian Eyes September 2020 Start for ‘Ripley’ Series Shoot in Italy (Exclusive)

  • Variety
Steven Zaillian Eyes September 2020 Start for ‘Ripley’ Series Shoot in Italy (Exclusive)
Steven Zaillian is getting ready to start shooting his “Ripley” TV series in September 2020 in Italy. The eight-episode Showtime series stars Andrew Scott in the titular role.

“Ripley” will mark the multi-hyphenate Zaillian’s return to television after creating HBO’s award-winning miniseries “The Night Of.” He is currently on the Italian island of Capri, where he is being honored by the Capri Hollywood International Film Festival as the author of the screenplay of Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” for which Zaillian is in the running for a Golden Globe.

Zaillian told Variety that he and his team are also in Italy to scout locations for “Ripley” in Capri and on the nearby island of Ischia, as well as on the Amalfi Coast and in Rome and Palermo. “The bulk of the show will be shot in Italy,” Zaillian said, noting that “there are several parts for Italian talents.”

After Italy,
See full article at Variety »

Syd Mead Dies: Visionary Futurist Who Worked On ‘Blade Runner’ & ‘Tron’ Was 86

  • Deadline
Syd Mead Dies: Visionary Futurist Who Worked On ‘Blade Runner’ & ‘Tron’ Was 86
Syd Mead, the visionary futurist who worked on such classic fantasy/sci-fi films as Tron, Blade Runner and Blade Runner 2049, died today in Pasadena. He was 86.

Roger Servick, his spouse and business partner of 40 years, told Deadline that Mead had been in failing health due to lymphoma cancer and he was undergoing treatment at City of Hope in Duarte, CA.

Servick, who was by Mead’s side when he died, said his last words were: “I’m done here. They’re coming to take me back.”

Mead’s art department credits include Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Aliens, Timecop, Mission: Impossible III, Elysium and Tomorrowland. He also appeared in numerous documentaries over the years.

Last month he was named the recipient of the William Cameron Menzies Award from the Art Directors Guild, for his innovative neo-futuristic concept artwork on numerous legendary movies. The Adg had planned
See full article at Deadline »

Netflix’s ‘Marriage Story’ Lands China Release With Road Pictures

  • Deadline
Netflix’s ‘Marriage Story’ Lands China Release With Road Pictures
Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story, a Netflix original feature, has secured theatrical release in China after the streamer cut a deal with Road Pictures.

Starring Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver, the pic chronicles a marriage breaking down. It premiered at Venice and Netflix gave the film an awards-qualifying release stateside. It’s up for six Golden Globes and is expected to be a contender at the Oscars.

The U.S. streaming outfit isn’t available in China and needs to find partners on the mainland for its releases.

Road Pictures is the distrib behind the enormously successful China releases of Capernaum, which grossed $54m, and Shoplifters, which took north of $14m. The release date for Marriage Story has not been confirmed but is expected to be after the Oscars in February.

“Marriage Story’s subtle and realistic and sometimes humorous (or life-affirming) portrayal of love, marriage and family in all
See full article at Deadline »

USA’s ‘Dare Me’ and Netflix’s ‘Spinning Out’: TV Review

When your job entails watching several new shows a week, overlapping themes are inevitable. Still, similarities between shows are rarely as stark as those between the first seasons of Netflix’s “Spinning Out” (out Jan. 2) and USA’s “Dare Me” (which premiered Dec. 20). Both dramas focus on teen girls as restless as they are talented, a combination that serves them well in their respective competitive sports — figure skating for “Spinning Out,” cheerleading for “Dare Me” — and have them scrambling to survive in their daily lives. Both examine motherhood, and how adults can blur the lines in their relationships to the
See full article at Variety - TV News »

‘Family Members’: Film Review

There are many shades of loneliness, but the tatty gray isolation of a seaside town in the off-season provides a peculiarly perfect background hue for two bereaved late-teenage siblings in Argentinian director Mateo Bendesky’s elusively offbeat “Family Members.” Only Bendesky’s second feature, its contemplative remove — despite the humor inherent in many of its observations — is both a boon and a pitfall, providing plenty of room for unusually accurate insights into the strange workings of grief for those on the cusp of adulthood. But it also keeps us at a distance, and sells short some of its punchier ideas in favor of a precise, but slightly enervating portrait of two people struggling to regain some sense of connection while being trapped in about six different layers of limbo.

Following the death of their mother, the circumstances of which we learn about only gradually and elliptically, Gilda (Laila Maltz) and
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘The Perfection’: Film Review

‘The Perfection’: Film Review
It’s punishment more than practice that makes “The Perfection,” which is less a horror film per se than a grisly yet upscale grand guignol melodrama. Richard Shepard’s very tricky suspense film, co-written with the TV writing-producing team of Eric Charmelo and Nicole Snyder, has been a success for Netflix. The streaming service released the film earlier this year, picking it up after it made a stir at Fantastic Fest 2018.

The tale of classical musicianship and elaborate revenge is easier to admire than actually like, given somewhat repellent content grounded in character psychology that does not bear close scrutiny after these terse 90 minutes are over. Still, the icily well-crafted gamesmanship Shepard and company have devised certainly makes that time pass quickly, if uncomfortably.

The director has turned mostly to small-screen work since his last theatrical feature, “Dom Hemingway” (2013), including a dozen episodes of “Girls,” whose Allison Williams plays the lead here.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Old Crow Medicine Show Part Ways With Founding Member Critter Fuqua

Old Crow Medicine Show Part Ways With Founding Member Critter Fuqua
Christopher “Critter” Fuqua has played his last official concert with Old Crow Medicine Show. Fuqua, a vocalist and multi-instrumentalist, co-founded the country string band in 1998 with singer and fiddle player Ketch Secor. His final show was the band’s annual New Year’s Eve concert at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.

Fuqua’s exit caps a year of lineup changes for Old Crow Medicine Show. Guitarist Chance McCoy left the group earlier in 2019, and solo artist Charlie Worsham joined as an adjunct member. Respected Nashville drummer Jerry Pentecost, who played with
See full article at Rolling Stone »

Bts Rocks New Year’s Eve With Times Square Performance

Bts Rocks New Year’s Eve With Times Square Performance
Ryan Seacrest predicted that half of Times Square would be fans of South Korean boyband Bts, and judging by the volume of screams heard throughout ABC’s broadcast of “Dick Clark’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest,” the Bts Army was in full force.

Loyal fans came early to cheer on the group — comprised of members Jimin, Jin, Rm, Suga, Jungkook, J Hope, and V — and patiently waited with handmade signs and light sticks to cheer the occasion. All day, the group was prominently displayed on billboards in Times Square as diehards secured spots for the group’s early afternoon rehearsal.
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Jack Sheldon, Jazz Trumpeter and ‘Schoolhouse Rock’ Singer, Dies at 88

  • The Wrap
Jack Sheldon, Jazz Trumpeter and ‘Schoolhouse Rock’ Singer, Dies at 88
Jack Sheldon, a jazz trumpeter who had a career as a TV performer in the 1960s and ’70s and sang classic “Schoolhouse Rock” tunes, died on Dec. 27 at age 88, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Long recognized for his trumpet playing, Sheldon was also a singer and TV performer. He lent his gentle voice to classic “Schoolhouse Rock” animated shorts such as “Conjunction Junction” and “I’m Just a Bill.”

For nearly two decades on “The Merv Griffin Show,” he not only performed in the band but served as an on-camera foil to the host.

He even co-starred in the mid-’60s CBS sitcom “The Cara Williams Show” and then headlined his own series, “Run, Buddy Run,” which lasted just a single season in the late ’60s.

As a trumpeter, he may be best remembered for his work on “The Shadow of Your Smile,” the theme to the 1965 Elizabeth Taylor-
See full article at The Wrap »

Remembering Celebrities Who Died in 2019

The man inside the yellow Big Bird suit; TV’s Rhoda; and a “Beverly Hills 90210” heartthrob are just a few of the beloved entertainment figures who died in 2019. Here are some of the unforgettable stars and creators of movies, TV and music who we lost this year.

Movies

Several notable directors died in 2019, including pioneering French New Wave director Agnes Varda, who died March 29 at 90. “Singin’ in the Rain” director Stanley Donen died Feb. 21 at 94, while cult movie director Larry Cohen, who helmed “It’s Alive,” died March 23 at 77. “Boyz N the Hood” director John Singleton suffered a stroke and died
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Remembering Celebrities Who Died in 2019

The man inside the yellow Big Bird suit; TV’s Rhoda; and a “Beverly Hills 90210” heartthrob are just a few of the beloved entertainment figures who died in 2019. Here are some of the unforgettable stars and creators of movies, TV and music who we lost this year.

Movies

Several notable directors died in 2019, including pioneering French New Wave director Agnes Varda, who died March 29 at 90. “Singin’ in the Rain” director Stanley Donen died Feb. 21 at 94, while cult movie director Larry Cohen, who helmed “It’s Alive,” died March 23 at 77. “Boyz N the Hood” director John Singleton suffered a stroke and died April 29 at 51, and renowned documentarian D.A. Pennebaker, who made “Don’t Look Back,” died Aug. 1 at 94. “Romeo and Juliet” director Franco Zeffirelli died June 15 at 96. The colorful studio executive and producer of “Chinatown” and many other films, Robert Evans, died Oct. 26 at 89.

Movie stars who died in 2019 included Doris Day,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Jack Sheldon, ‘Schoolhouse Rock’ Singer and ‘Merv Griffin’ Trumpeter, Dies at 88

Jack Sheldon, ‘Schoolhouse Rock’ Singer and ‘Merv Griffin’ Trumpeter,  Dies at 88
Jack Sheldon, known to children as one of the voices of “Schoolhouse Rocks” and adults as a master trumpeter who served as music director on “The Merv Griffin Show,” has died at age 88.

Sheldon was the sidekick as well as MD on Griffin’s talk show for 18 years. But his own discography as a band leader added up to more than 20 albums, starting in the late ’50s, when he was part of the west coast bebop movement, continuing through his last release in 2007.

“To all Jack Sheldon fans,” Cynthia Jimenez wrote on the musician’s Facebook page, “on behalf of my sister Dianne Jimenez [his longtime manager], sadly,
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Variety’s Sun Valley Film Festival Screenings Attract More Than 200 Oscar Voters

Variety’s Sun Valley Film Festival Screenings Attract More Than 200 Oscar Voters
Sun Valley, Idaho has been a holiday haven for members of the entertainment industry since the golden era of Hollywood, when the likes of Gary Cooper and Clark Gable flocked to the affluent ski resort. Today, the area remains a favored vacation getaway for such actors and filmmakers as Tom Hanks, Clint Eastwood and Chelsea Handler.

With a bounty of fir trees bedecked with twinkling lights and a blanket of pristine powdery snow, Sun Valley also marked the perfect spot for Variety and Sun Valley Film Festival’s Screening Series on Dec. 27 and 29, where more than 200 voting members of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences gathered at the Argyros Performing Arts Center for each of the two screenings—Clint Eastwood’s “Richard Jewell” and “The Cave,” the latest documentary from Oscar-nominated Syriran filmmaker Feras Fayyad.

Teddy Grennan, founder of the Sun Valley Film Festival, and Candice Pate, the fest’s director,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

How to Watch the 2020 Rose Parade Live Online on New Year’s Day

  • The Wrap
How to Watch the 2020 Rose Parade Live Online on New Year’s Day
The new decade will kick off on Wednesday with the Oregon Ducks facing off against the Wisconsin Badgers in the 2020 Rose Bowl game, but before the annual college football tradition gets underway, fans can tune in to the 131st annual Tournament of Roses Parade.

Featuring the theme “The Power of Hope,” the parade will be hosted by Grand Marshals Rita Moreno, Gina Torres and Laurie Hernandez. It is set begin at 8 a.m. Pt.

Those who can’t make it to Pasadena to watch the parade in person (but somehow have managed to wake up that early on New Year’s day and aren’t dying) can watch broadcasts on ABC, NBC, Hallmark Channel, Ktla 5, Rfd TV and Univision.

Also Read: 115 Cable Channels Ranked by 2019 Viewership - Yes, Comedy.TV Is Still Dead Last

This year, the parade will feature marching bands, equestrian units and a total of 39 floats competing
See full article at The Wrap »

‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ – We Need to Talk About This Rose Tico Situation

  • The Wrap
‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ – We Need to Talk About This Rose Tico Situation
(This article contains some spoilers for Rose Tico’s role, such that it is, in “Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker.” I would say these are not major spoilers.)

One of the weirder things that happened in the wake of “The Last Jedi,” which sparked endless online arguments about its merits, is that a group of nerds who disliked the film decided to take their anger out specifically on Kelly Marie Tran, the actress who plays Rose Tico.

It was a bad time caused by bad people. And yet “The Rise of Skywalker” nonetheless feels very much like parts of the film were constructed specifically to cater to those harassers — and the way it takes Rose, who was a main character in the last movie, and dumps her into a minor background role is Exhibit A.

Now, when Rose was first introduced back in “The Last Jedi,” it
See full article at The Wrap »

Does ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ Have a Post-Credits Scene?

  • The Wrap
Does ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ Have a Post-Credits Scene?
Since “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” more than held its own against “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” back in 2017, it’s safe to say that this franchise is going to be around for a while. Though “Jumanji: The Next Level” has thus far not quite matched its predecessor’s take at the box office, it’s certainly been successful in its own right. So I hope you’re ready for more in a couple years.

This time around, the new “Jumanji” flick got a head start by opening a week ahead of its “Star Wars” competition — this is actually why it’s pacing behind the last movie, because it hasn’t gotten as much of its holiday bump as the last movie did at this point in its run. It’s off to a good start, having taken the box office crown from “Frozen 2” for a week before “Star Wars:
See full article at The Wrap »

Box Office Year In Review: Disney Conquers, But Who Else Had a Good 2019?

  • The Wrap
Box Office Year In Review: Disney Conquers, But Who Else Had a Good 2019?
If two other studios in Hollywood had even half the success that Disney had this year, the 2019 box office would have broken last year’s record $11.8 billion take, and may have even topped the $12 billion mark in North America. Instead, 2019 was a year where a single studio stoked fears of a monopoly over the entertainment industry while the rest were left fighting for a distant second.

For the first time in Hollywood history, the five highest-grossing films of the year all came from one studio, with Disney striking gold over and over with “Frozen II,” “Captain Marvel,” “Toy Story 4,” ” The Lion King” and the film that became an unprecedented global phenomenon and the new all-time box office record holder, “Avengers: Endgame.”

Also Read: 2019 Movie Franchise Tracker: Which Blockbusters Are Getting Sequels? (Photos)

Meanwhile, only four non-Disney films from two studios have managed to gross more than $200 million, leaving Disney
See full article at The Wrap »

At 93, Roger Corman Has No Intention of Retiring

At 93, Roger Corman Has No Intention of Retiring
Roger Corman is alive and well and up to his old tricks.

At 93, the prodigiously prolific director, producer and mini-major mogul has been in the business long enough to receive scores of lifetime achievement awards — he’ll be getting another one this week in Houston, courtesy of the Houston Film Critics Society — and solidify his status as equal parts living legend and eminence grise.

He has more than 400 films to his credit, including the no-budget B-movies, darkly comical cult-faves and stylishly gothic Edgar Allen Poe adaptations he made in the 1950s and ‘60s, and the dozens of films he produced for American-International and his own companies, New World and Concorde Pictures, that provided major career boosts for such up-and-comers as Martin Scorsese, Francis Coppola, Ron Howard, Peter Bogdanovich, James Cameron, Jonathan Demme, Gale Anne Hurd and on and on and on.

In 2009, the Motion Picture Academy’s Board of Governors
See full article at Variety - Film News »
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