April 08, 2013 10:52pm EST
Mad Men Takes a Jump: And not in the way Draper's failed ad pitch was suggesting. Sunday’s two hour Season 6 premiere drew in 3.4 million viewers — a decent number for the AMC hit, but still down from the 3.5 million that tuned in for Season 5′s premiere last year. If creator Matt Weiner or his cast are upset at this news, they can go home and cry into their Emmys. [TVLine]
Judge Judy to Judge Forever: Judy Sheindlin will still be judging you when you're in the grave. Okay, so that's a bit morbid, but Judge Judy has been officially renewed until 2017, which is absolutely insane. The show is currently on its 17th season so that will make... 21 seasons? I don't know, this is not a site for math. [EW]
The Good Wife Gets Streeped: Well, they get her daughter, which is close enough. Mamie Gummer will return to CBS' hit drama on April 21, as Nancy Corzier, the occasional thorn in Alicia's side. Gummer will be up against Alicia for the case we reported on earlier this month — the software engineer contract dispute, which also features an appearance by Joss Whedon staple Fran Kranz. [TVLine]
American Ninjas Kick Back: Ninja Warrior is only like, the coolest show ever, so we're not surprised to hear that the impossible obstacle course from Hell will return this summer. The only difference is, this year host Jonny Moseley has been replaced by NFL Network sports analyst Akbar Gbaja Biamila and ESPN sports broadcaster Jenn Brown. [EW]
Don't Fear the Reaper: Fans of CW's cult comedy series Reaper have nothing to fear thanks to FearNet. The network is giving the show a one-night-only reunion to coincide with the network's first off-net rights purchase of the series two seasons. The special is slated to premiere on June 4, 2013. [Deadline]
Follow Shaunna on Twitter @HWShaunna
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April 06, 2013 10:08am EST
Crafting a horror remake is always a bit of a double-edged sword. On the one hand, there is an implied obligation to the fanbase of the original movie. These fans, most ardent when it comes to this particular genre, expect the spirit and, to a certain extent the content of the progenitor movie to be alive and well within the narrative of the remake. However, were the new film to be a shot-for-shot remake of the original, it would equally earn the rancorous bile of horror fans. The task is daunting and unenviable.
Evil Dead remake director Fede Alvarez, on the other hand, is dealing with a triple-edged sword…a glaive even. He has to remake a classic, showing reverence to its fans and finding new story avenues, all the while dealing with the fact that the film from which he is drawing inspiration is so iconic that it’s become a genre in-joke. More specifically, the standardization of its central conceit made it the ideal basis for the most self-aware horror film possibly ever made: The Cabin in the Woods.
With Cabin in the Woods, Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard constructed an Aristotelian deconstruction of horror that reduced decades’ worth of titles to its most basic, primal forms. The core of nearly every scary movie is the idea of isolation; of being severed from society and thereby more vulnerable to any number of interchangeable supernatural threats. Simultaneously we so often deal with youthful rejection of adult supervision. The cabin in the woods itself is a mythic representation of that isolation, that freedom from supervision. It was Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead that permanently forged this representation; canonizing campfire iconography into genre lore.
What this means for the Evil Dead remake is that it’s not just a return to the world of Raimi’s universe, but indeed a double-dip into redefinition. For crying out loud, the titular cabin in the woods in Goddard’s film is a near exact recreation of the cabin from The Evil Dead. Stepping over that threshold again therefore carries an added sense of déjà vu. The curtains have been pulled back, and audiences are now hyperaware of convention. Clever reinvention, of many benchmark horror films but Raimi’s Evil Dead in particular, has already been achieved, and places the Evil Dead remake well in danger of appearing redundant; or worse, as a step backwards. How can the wheel again be…reincarnated?
Elements of the Raimi world, of the central setting, no longer belong solely to Evil Dead. In fact, Cabin in the Woods’ retroactive re-contextualizing can actually create an entirely new perception for contemporary viewers of Alvarez’s film. In tweaking the story construct from Raimi’s Evil Dead, just enough to establish its own identity and avoid the aforementioned shot-for-shot retread, Alvarez has made it possible for us to think of his Evil Dead as the last successful scenario executed by Hadley and Sitterson. Both the new Evil Dead and Cabin in the Woods, each nodding to the Raimi original, chart a bursting open cellar door and the reading of ancient words from a sinister book as their inciting actions. The young inhabitants of the cabin are then dispatched by a malevolent supernatural presence. The ancient ones are appeased; world keeps on spinning.
Is it fair to judge the Evil Dead remake against a satire that utilizes Raimi’s Evil Dead as part of a diverse arsenal of dissected mainstays? No, but that is precisely the connection that will be drawn in the minds of those who have seen both movies. So how does Alvarez’s film combat this inevitable comparison? Is the studio even aware or concerned about it?
When one views the new Evil Dead, apart from the correlation to Cabin in the Woods, the other major item of note is the film’s excessive violence. If the original Evil Dead was gory, and Cabin in the Woods a bloodbath, then the new incarnation of Evil Dead is a hellish parade of torment soaked in tanker trucks full of blood. Point of fact, it’s one of the goriest studio films in recent memory. Granted, the vast majority of these grisly effects are achieved practically so there is artistry at play that prevents the remake from being labeled as total exploitation. However it may be argued that the violence will create enough of a spectacle as to alleviate the remake feeling like white noise for the viewer in the wake of Cabin. Whether this is the studio’s intent, it will benefit them to no end.
There are also some gender role reversals at play in Alvarez’s Evil Dead that may aid in its distinction from Cabin in the Woods, but then Goddard’s film is also marked by significant turnabouts, so the carnival-like atmosphere the violence creates is still of vital importance.
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April 01, 2013 4:10pm EST
When Castle debuted in 2009, its cutesy take on the typical cop procedural was a little more grating than refreshing. Popular crime writer Richard Castle (Nathan Fillion) embedded with (read: annoyed) a team of homicide detectives to research his next novel, and the womanizing, smartass author clashed with lead detective Kate Beckett (Stana Katic), leading to plenty of opposites-attract chemistry and snappy comebacks.
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But somehow, a few episodes in, the pop culture-infused dramedy (leaning heavily toward the -edy part of the equation) gelled together, with just the right balance of tongue-in-cheek skewering of celebrity obsession, a legitimately creepy murder mystery surrounding the death of Beckett's mother, and a natural chemistry between the regular cast members (obvious sexual tension between Beckett and Castle overshadowing the heartwarming friendships between the supporting characters). Fillion's effortless charm probably had much to do with that, as fans of his quirky leading man from Joss Whedon's short-lived "space Western" Firefly followed him to the new series.
Now, 100 episodes later, Castle and Beckett are dating, Fillion continues to winkingly reference his Firefly past (much to the delight of fans), and the tone alternates between cutesy and serious in a not-at-all jarring way. A few weeks ago, a team member went undercover with the Irish mob for a very somber installment. But just two weeks later, the milestone 100th episode, "The Lives of Others," features one of the show's trademark pop culture-centric plots as Castle, laid up with a broken leg from a skiing accident, gets Hitchcockian as he spies on his neighbors, Rear Window-style, thinking he's witnessed a murder.
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Has he? Clearly you'll have to tune in to find out. But what we can tell you going in is that it's a perfect example of the pop culture homage Castle does so well (in recent years, the show has taken on everything from Dancing With the Stars to the Real Housewives franchise — not to mention steampunks, Ghost Hunters, and Comic-Con culture). There are a few great Castle/Alexis moments, but an even better Castle/Beckett one at the end. Just wait for it!
Castle airs Monday nights at 10 PM on ABC.
Were you a fan of Castle from the start, or did it take a few episodes for you to warm up to it?
Follow Jean on Twitter @hijean
[Photo Credit: Richard Cartwright/ABC]
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March 20, 2013 4:20pm EST
Sometimes I’m totally fine with letting shows collect dust on my DVR. I know that like Sour Patch Kids or my little black dress, those shows will never let me down and they’ll wait patiently until I have time to enjoy them. Unfortunately yesterday in my haste to make sure I could record the Pretty Little Liars finale, I did the unthinkable: I deleted my entire DVR library. My world is in shambles, I literally called my mom and cried, and I’m pretty sure I put a straw directly in my wine bottle last night. Can we please have a moment of silence for all the precious episodes of Gilmore Girls, Veronica Mars, Glee, and Chopped that I lost? … Thank you.
On a happier note, this week’s edition of Leanne’s Spoiler List features five phenomenal shows that will make you twirl with excitement. I chatted with Shameless star Shanola Hampton to bring you updates on the year’s most important, yet bizarre, baby-watch, and gushed with the Mayim Bialik and creators of The Big Bang Theory about taking Sheldon and Amy’s relationship to the next level. Plus, you’ll find delightful details on upcoming episodes of The Good Wife, Grey’s Anatomy and The Mindy Project. Read on for all the TV wonder below!
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1. Shameless: Baby Maybe?Whenever some one asks me what my favorite shows are — and believe me when you’re a TV reporter that happens a lot! — Shameless is always in my top three. This season has featured the most jaw-dropping, mind-blowing, heart-pounding episodes that have ever graced my TV screen so naturally I needed someone to discuss all the chaos with.
Last week I giggled with the incredible Shanola Hampton as she filled me in on all the baby mama-drama that V and Kev are currently dealing with — namely, the fact that since V can't conceive, her mom and hubby are doin' it so her mom can be the surrogate for their child. Hampton explains that even though V is using a rather twisted method to get a baby, she understands how her desire to be a mom clouded her logic. “The options were limited for her and that’s what she chose to do. For a woman like V who is determined to always get what she wants when she sets her mind to it, I get it,” she says.
But Hampton says Kev and V's mother’s last baby-making session officially snapped V out of her crazed pregnancy plan. The actress says, “Once she saw her mother getting into it with the music and stuff she’s like, ‘Okay no! This has gone to a whole new level!’” In fact, the Shameless star was so in tune with V’s horror and digust that she almost got sick on set filming that day! “The episode that you saw with the final sex scene where V finally stopped it and said, ‘No no no no no!’ By that point I was nauseous, literally threw up in my mouth a little bit shooting,” she says with a laugh.
We saw at the tail end of “Where There’s a Will” that Kev received a sexy text from Carol, so could this intimate event come back to into play? Hampton teases, “There will be some other craziness that comes out about my mother by the end of the season and Veronica will flip her lid, but it wont be that message.” As we all so clearly know, if there’s one girl in Chicago you don’t want to eff with, it’s Veronica. Isn’t that right, Cheryl?
Potential ass-kicking aside, will all this craziness finally let V get her “little punk” with Kev’s pretty eyes and smile? Not to brag or anything, but I’ve already seen this Sunday’s episode, “Civil Wrongs,” and I can tell you that there will be a pregnancy test involved. I can’t tell you whether it’s positive or negative but I can tell you that my girl Shanola is truly a master at sprinting in heels.
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2. Grey’s Anatomy: Practically Perfect in Every WayDr. April Kepner finally found some luck in the love department last week when her hot new EMT boyfriend revealed he was a virgin and was waiting until marriage to have sex, just like she was! (Well, minus her little dalliance with Jackson, of course.) And according to April's lovely portrayer, Sarah Drew, he's only going to get more perfect when we see him again.
"He’s not actually in this week’s episode but I talk – quite a lot – about him in the episode, and he shows up in two weeks where he gets injured in a gas explosion trying to shield a child from the blast," Drew reveals to Hollywood.com. Risking his life to save a child? Yeah, we agree with Drew: "He’s just perfect in every way."
Too bad April didn't tell him the whole truth about her brief sexual past with Jackson. We have a feeling that won't end well for one of our favorite Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital doctors. "She has lied to him and she is stuck in this in-between where she doesn’t know how she feels about Jackson," Drew says. "I don’t think she can fully articulate that she is in the middle of a love triangle but she is, whether she believes it or not."
But despite her feelings for Jackson, April's lie is the biggest obstacle in her new relationship right now. "She’s so excited that she’s met someone that’s exactly on the same page about sex that she is that she didn’t want to screw it up," Drew explains. "In that moment she felt like it would be such a disappointment to try to explain, 'I was a virgin and then I wasn’t and now I am again.' Who understands that? That’s absurd. I think she should have told him, and if she told him right off the bat he would have been fine. But she didn’t want to screw with it. It’s going to come back and bite her in the ass." Yikes!
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3. The Big Bang Theory: Mother May I?There are certain things in this world that I love with all my heart: the teeny-tiny meows of a kitten, the first cup of coffee in the morning, the word “adore,” and last but certainly not least: The Big Bang Theory! So you can imagine my delight when I caught up with the scientifically gifted cast and creators on the PaleyFest red carpet last week.
Those who follow me on Twitter know that I one of my goals in life is to be besties with Amy Farrah Fowler and that I consider this moment to be one of the greatest 43 seconds ever created on television. So of course I had to talk about one of my all-time favorite couples: Shamy!
“We are constantly amazed that Amy is able to make progress with Sheldon in the relationship,” creator Bill Prady reveals. “It’s actually fought when it happens in the writers room because someone will say, ‘Amy wants this.’ and someone else will say, ‘Sheldon would never do that. Then the work is what could Amy do to make him do that? She’s a strong and smart, character so it usually works out.”
So what should the next step in their relationship be? Go on a scientific retreat together? Write a thesis together? Or maybe (gasp!) coitus? Well I have an idea that I’ve been wanting to see for months: Amy meeting Sheldon’s mom! Prady agrees that this would be the perfect next step for the couple. “That a good idea! We’ll talk about that.” Executive producer Steven Molaro agrees, saying, “We would love to see that as well, so do not be surprised if in the future that occurs.”
Just thinking about Sheldon’s Christ-loving Texan mother talking with our Sheldon-obsessed Amy makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. When I pitched the idea to Mayim Bialik she was equally excited. “Oh I think that would be really clever!” she smiles. “I mean Laurie Metcalf is just so amazing, so anybody with her would be incredible.” Squee! So keep in mind Big Bang Theory lovers, whenever we see this amazing interaction it was my hypothesis that started it all!
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4. The Good Wife: Best Episode Ever!I kind of feel a little like Saturday Night Live's Stefon trying to describe the next episode of The Good Wife, "The Death of a Client." While I can't tell you exactly what happens, just know that It. Has. Everything! Murder, lawsuits, fistfights, life-changing job opportunities, ball gowns, Fringe star John Noble, drunk Stockard Channing, and some steamy Alicia/Will makeouts.
Yes, that's right — Will and Alicia totally make out. I know. OMG! But before you freak out, know that much of the episode is told through flashbacks after Noble's character, Alicia's eccentric and extremely litigious client, is murdered and the police enlist her help to figure out who killed him. Things only get scarier when we find out Alicia may be the next target. Dun dun duuuuun!
But despite the serious premise, don't expect non-stop drama — although they're trying to find a killer, the episode is pretty funny! What you should prepare yourself for is plot development after plot development. That too vague for you? Okay, fine. Here are some more teases: Someone gets decked in the face, Diane gets a very intriguing career opportunity, Channing's character (Alicia's mom) reveals some secrets about her daughter's marriage to Peter, and there's a well-timed "go f*** yourself."
Of course, as always, Juliana Margulies looks gorgeous, but especially so in a red gown as she heads to an important political event with Peter. (Did I mention the sexy Will/Alicia scenes? Because they're pretty damn hot.)
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5. The Mindy Project: Romance and Bromance The Mindy Project has explored the love lives of two of its main stars, but we haven't seen much of the action the sexy yet womanizing Dr. Jeremy Reed has presumably been getting (aside from the pilot, where he and Mindy ended their ongoing fling).
That's about to change, Ed Weeks promises Hollywood.com. Score! Jeremy is about to spark up a relationship with Mindy's old college friend, Maggie (Mary Grill), and the "fun mismatch" will heat up quickly. "He normally goes for models and 10s and bimbos, and she is slightly more rough hewn," Weeks spills. "She’s a gym teacher, unreconstructed, doesn’t give a s**t about all of Jeremy’s bulls**t, isn’t seduced by his accent or his hair or his clothes. I think Jeremy finds that really intriguing, like a challenge."
While Weeks stayed quiet on how long the relationship will last, you should know that the couple just filmed their first screen kiss. "It was pretty good. My action was bad but I tasted fine," Weeks jokes after popping a piece of gum.
But a new fling isn't all we'll see of Jeremy in the second half of Season 1. "We might meet some of his family," Weeks teases. "We might learn a little bit about his past, how he got to America from England, which will be really fun. We’ll see his bromance with Morgan develop. We’ve shot a few really fun stories of recently."
Like what? Prepare yourselves: "There’s an amazing scene in a sweat lodge where Morgan and Jeremy are topless and are embracing — and are arguing. Buckle up."
Follow Leanne on Twitter @LeanneAguilera
—Additional Reporting by Jean Bentley and Sydney Bucksbaum
[Photo Credit: Showtime, CBS, FOX, ABC]
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March 13, 2013 4:52pm EST
Swoon. It's the word and overall feeling that will be most associated with Joss Whedon's sexy and cleverly updated take on William Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. Fans of the Bard will swoon that Whedon has miraculously given the tale new life while staying faithful to the classic text. The Whedonverse followers will swoon at the terrific performances from familiar faces, particularly Amy Ackers' lovely, quick-witted as Beatrice and Alexis Denisof's hilariously smug Benedick. (That said, the Whedonverse ruling king Nathan Fillion may earn the biggest laughs as comic relief police chief Dogberry).
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Critics will swoon, newcomers who feared they might not understand Shakespeare will swoon, and filmmakers will swoon at the proof that — even in this day and age — you can quite literally make a movie in your backyard, over the course of a few days with your closest friends, and turn out something truly special.
Perhaps that's why Much Ado About Nothing has played so well on the festival circuit, including SXSW where it premiered over the weekend and has been showing through the week in Austin. When audiences are filled with filmmakers and film enthusiasts, it's hard not to get caught up in something as magical as this movie. (One fan in the audience of the screening I attended could simply muster "Wow!" when the end credits began to roll).
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But the real beauty that lies in Whedon's vision of Much Ado About Nothing isn't just the way it's shot (a sleek black and white), but that it makes something old feel so new. The core of the characters and the story of matchmaker Don Pedro (Reed Diamond) bringing together, against quite a few odds, the stubborn Beatrice and Benedick and the naive Claudio (Fran Kranz) and Hero (Jillan Morgese) sounds so familiar, but looks and feels entirely refreshingly different.
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Sometimes it can be jarring to see an iPhone on a table, or a car driving by on the street as top-notch actors like Clark Gregg (brilliant, as head of the household Leonato) recite Shakespeare, but unlike Baz Luhrmann's rapid-fire MTV take on the Bard in 1996 with Romeo + Juliet, the dialogue settles in and eventually feels natural in the modern settings. Of course, it's no surprise, really, that this text works so well with Joss Whedon: after all, it's smart, damn funny, and an all-around lovely experience.
[Photo credit: Bellwether Pictures]
March 12, 2013 2:54pm EST
Good news, fans of Joss Whedon, Cabin in the Woods, Dollhouse... and, well, Fran Kranz — the scene-stealing actor has been cast in a guest role on CBS' hit drama The Good Wife.
CBS confirmed to Hollywood.com exclusively that Fran will play Eugene, "a creative-yet-overworked software coder." Alicia (Julianna Margulies) will represent Eugene's company when his colleague dies in a car accident — due in part to his exhaustion from working long hours (been there). Their employer then demands that the programmers sign "a strict new contract which prohibits, among other things, their ability to bring suit against the company."
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Sounds pretty lame, right, my fellow working (wo)men? Alicia takes on their case as a favor to her mother, but of course, things are revealed to be more complicated than they seem.
Kranz' episode will air sometime in April. New episodes of The Good Wife air Sunday nights at 9PM on CBS.
But here's what we really want to know — when will Kranz be cast on S.H.I.E.L.D.?
Follow Shaunna on Twitter @HWShaunna
[PHOTO CREDIT: Joseph Marzullo/WENN]
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March 08, 2013 12:34pm EST
The 2013 SXSW festival kicks off today in Austin, and if you're a movie buff heading down to Texas to park in the festivities, well, you better learn how to be in a lot of places at once. This year's film lineup is as big as the Lone Star state itself. From headliners like The Incredible Burt Wonderstone and Spring Breakers, to buzzy premieres that include the Josh Duhamel-starrer Americana road trip gone wrong Scenic Route and the British ensemble marriage comedy I Give It A Year, to such already-bona fide festival favorites as Before Midnight and Much Ado About Nothing, there's no shortage of flicks to check out.
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So which flicks are can't miss? We picked 5 SXSW movies we're looking forward to seeing this week and think you should, too.
Short Term 12: Based loosely on director Destin Cretton's real-life experiences working at a group home for troubled teens, Short Term 12 will not only serve as the launching pad for Brie Larson's (pictured) breakout performance, the indie drama about the kids and counselors at a housing facility also looks to be one of the fest's most effective tearjerkers.
Drinking Buddies: Can't get enough of New Girl star Jake Johnson? Neither can we. But he's just one of the reasons why we'll be checking out the can-men-and-women-be-friends (especially when there's alcohol involved) comedy which also stars Olivia Wilde, Anna Kendrick, and Ron Livingston.
Kelly & Victor: On the other end of the romance spectrum, there's Kelly & Victor. The indie drama about an affair between a Liverpool couple looks like it has the potential to be the UK's version of Blue Valentine.
evil Dead: Last year's eagerly anticipated horror flick The Cabin in the Woods did not disappoint at SXSW, so hopes are high that yet another flick about a doomed trip to a cabin in the woods will be a hit. Expectations are sky-high for the grisly remake of Sam Raimi's 1981 classic, so you bet your mangled tongue we'll be there to see if it brings the goods. Sleep is overrated anyway.
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Broadway Idiot: There's a bevy of must-see documentaries playing at the festival this year (I Am Divine, Hawking, Downloaded, The Punk Singer are all on our docket) but we're most intrigued by how Green Day went from punk trio to Broadway babies. Plus, the band will be on hand for the premiere and we have no doubt Billie Joe Armstrong will have some interesting things to say.
Be sure to have these on your radar, too: Burma, Coldwater, Good Vibrations, Gus, Loves Her Gun, Milo, Some Girl(s), When Angels Sing, You're Next
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Check in with Hollywood.com all week for all of our SXSW coverage, including reviews, interviews, and so much more.
[Photo credit: Facebook]
March 08, 2013 12:27pm EST
In 1994, Kevin Smith treated the world to a pack of cigarettes and a few bars of "Berserker," not knowing then that the mega-low-budget film in question — his cult phenomenon Clerks. — would transcend into a longstanding film career. Not only would Clerks. kick off Smith's string of tenuously connected View Askewniverse movies, it would come to earn two direct sequels: Clerks II, which released in 2006, and the forthcoming Clerks III, on which Smith has just begun working, as the writer/director announced on Facebook, accompanying the following image:
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"THE BEGINNING OF THE END," Smith writes alongside the image of the script. "20 years ago today, we started shooting CLERKS. 20 years later, with no plan or provocation, I jumped out of bed at 4:20 this morning and started writing CLERKS III.It's been like hanging out with old friends. And after 2 hours of tapping the keys and giggling, I have come to a conclusion... CLERKS III will be the best film I'll ever make."
Quite the proclamation.
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In Clerks., Smith introduced Dante (Brian O'Halloran), a self-loathing sad sack with an odd proclivity for earning the eyes of women far more ambitious than he, and Randal (Jeff Anderson), his acerbic, misanthropic, but eternally devoted best friend, not to mention omnipresent clowns Jay and Silent Bob (Jason Mewes and Smith himself), revisiting the lot 12 years later to see where their adult lives have taken them. Now plucking away at their 40s, the lot will return for a third chapter, suggesting more poetic waxing and comic book conversations for the devoted fan base.
But where are the characters now? Are they still working at Quick Stop? Is Dante still married to Rosario Dawson? Have Jay and Silent Bob stayed clean? What do you think will (and should) happen in Clerks III?
Follow Michael Arbeiter on Twitter @MichaelArbeiter
[Photo Credit: Miramax]
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March 08, 2013 11:40am EST
Ang Lee couldn't do it. Edward Norton couldn't do it. We're not sure if there is a creative force in Hollywood capable of delivering a Hulk movie that people will respond to. And although Mark Ruffalo's recent declaration that we won't be seeing the Hulk pop up in any new Marvel movies until The Avengers 2 was a no-brainer, it still made us wonder if Dr. Bruce Banner or his behemoth alter ego will ever earn the central spotlight in another feature. And it seems like Avengers director Joss Whedon is wondering the same thing.
At this point, Ruffalo is signed on to play the Hulk in six more movies (including Avengers 2). Now that Ruffalo's new remark counts out appearances in Captain America and Thor sequels, we can predict a Hulk-heavy Marvel Universe following the second group assembly. Could one of these appearances take form as the rumored Planet Hulk/World War Hulk film adaptation?
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"I didn’t actually read World War Hulk," Whedon said of the comic book property, as reported by Deadline, "so I’m not sure how I’d adapt it." The director, who is quickly becoming a mainstay behind the Marvel curtain, has more of an affinity for the antihero than others might. "Mark [Ruffalo] and I loved the Hulk and went over and over the concept of rage and how it should manifest, and that part of it was fascinating to both of us."
Still, Whedon recognizes the hurdles in crafting a standalone Hulk movie: "The Hulk is the most difficult Marvel property because it’s always about balance. Is he a monster? Is he a hero? Are you going to root for a protagonist who spends all his time trying to stop the reason you came to the movie from happening? It’s always a dance. I don’t think the first two movies nailed it, but I don’t envy them the task. It was easier to have him in a group than to build everything around him."
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Whedon thinks there's a key to a Hulk movie that works, and it's actually less Hulk. "The real heart of the experience ultimately becomes playing Banner, and the thing that people fell in love with was Banner because I think Mark has you from the first time he shows up ... I don’t think there would be any problem getting a movie together that had enough Banner, even if there was also Hulk. But if he was only Hulk for the entire movie I think Mark at some point would go, why am I here? I would be less inclined to pursue a storyline where the Hulk is only ever the Hulk."
There is no official slate at this point for the Hulk's big screen future. But Ruffalo's six-picture deal, Marvel's ambitious expansion, and the optimism of grand wizard Whedon give us hope for the complicated character.
Follow Michael Arbeiter on Twitter @MichaelArbeiter
[Photo Credit: Disney]
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March 07, 2013 5:24pm EST
The trailer for Joss Whedon's take on William Shakespeare's classic comic tale Much Ado About Nothing is everything you'd hoped it would be: chock full of Whedonverse stars (including Alexis Denisof, Amy Acker, Nathan Fillion, and Clark Gregg), less manic than Baz Luhrmann's modern retelling of Romeo + Juliet so you'll actually be able to keep up it, and it looks every bit as romantic and bitingly funny as the text that it is based off of. (Jeez, Whedon, is there anything you can't do at this point?!)
The movie, which was a hit with audiences when it premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in 2012 and will attempt woo festival goers at SXSW, will give audiences everywhere an English lesson on June 21. But, the satisfying trailer for the flick (which is done in the oh-so-trendy black-and-white) should tide the Whedonverse over until then. Watch it here and mouth along with all your Cliff Notes favorites. "By this hand, I love thee."
Art thou excited for Whedon's Much Ado About Nothing?
[Photo credit: Bellwether Pictures]