Shutting off news reports of the Iran-Contra affair, turning down the abrasive rock stylings of the Beastie Boys, and peering through the perpetual mist of airborne cocaine particles that was inherent to 1987 California, film and television director Jeff Franklin dreamed of a simpler time. A time riddled with milkmen and paperboys, a time wherein three grown imbeciles could band together to raise a triad of blonde, plucky sisters together without incurring questioning unto their judgmental capabilities. Even in a time as cynical as the late '80s and early '90s, Franklin's creation Full House managed to thrive on the simple, wholesome, drama-free bounties of pleasant West Coast tomfoolery. Back then, the Tanners and co. didn't need postmodern satire, sociopolitical undertones, sudden character deaths, love triangles, or overarching themes of any kind — they relied (and thrived) simply on being pleasant. But today would be a different story.
With John Stamos pushing to revive the highly successful ABC sitcom (via TV Guide) — in the wake of the Disney Channel's creation of Girl Meets World, no less — we are looking at the considerable, albeit presently quite tentative, possibility that such an entity might in time come to be. But we can't help but wonder how a show about three ceaselessly well-meaning kooks and their frighteningly saccharine communal daughters would fare amid today's TV slate: a community of shows where crooked and criminal, if not entirely amoral, heroes and heroine are the norm rather than the exception.
Cynicism is the life blood of today's TV. Even in our comedic fare — think of Community, Arrested Development, How I Met Your Mother, and even The Big Bang Theory — do we see the proclivity to mock and deconstruct, to tear apart the very fabric of shows like Full House (happy family bouncing from one typical sitcom plotline to the next week after week). Our characters aren't looking to reclaim the era of milkmen and paperboys the way Danny Tanner was, they're looking to shoot down the blind-eyed peurility upheld by this allegedly superior past. So far gone into the muck of irony is today's television viewer that Full House couldn't seem earnest no matter how hard it tried... or, better yet, how naturally earnestness came to it.
But even if we can accept the Tanner/Katsopolis/Gladstone/Gibbler tribe as impeccably genuine, what would be our motivation to watch week after week? Full House, so appropriately named after an immobile edifice, was a show that celebrated its static nature. Every time you set foot into that San Francisco dwelling, you were treated to the same consequence-free merriment that you caught episodes and seasons prior. Yes, this was a treat, not a relegation. But today, we yearn for that through-line momentum. We watch, if for no other reason, to find out what happens next in the chaotic and kinetic, oftentimes toxic, forward narratives of Walter White, Carrie Mathison, and Tyrion Lannister. Hell, one of the most popular shows on today is called Scandal. If that's not telling, then I don't know what is.
Without even a central romance into which to sink our teeth — could we really see Danny, Joey, or any of the girls upholding one half of a riveting will-they-won't-they? — we're hardly draw to "find out what happens on the next exciting episode of Full House," at least not with the same verve to which modern TV has fueled our communal addiction.
Lacking that intertwining drama, today's Full House could seem devoid of life force. Without the scathing bite of sarcasm, it could come off lazy and unclever. And with such an adherence to the traditional format — that which today's comedy routinely turns inside out for sport — it could render not nostalgic but wholly outdated. When Full House came to be in 1987, it was then a throwback, a revival of a simpler time. So what would it be now? A throwback to a throwback? A revival of a revival? A tribute to a time simpler than a time that was simpler? See, just trying to identify it feels like a lost cause.
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Full House star John Stamos is reportedly spearheading a reboot of the popular U.S. family sitcom, and has already recruited most of the cast to return. Stamos, who has an ownership stake in the programme, has been working with executives at Warner Bros. TV to bring back the beloved show, which ran from 1987 to 1995.
According to TVGuide.com, original executive producer Bob Boyett and creator Jeff Franklin are actively involved in developing a revival, with Franklin tapped to write the new version.
Reports suggest actresses Candace Cameron Bure, Jodie Sweetin and Andrea Barber are all on board to return, while Bob Saget and Dave Coulier are also involved in the project.
No word on whether Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, who doubled up as Michelle Tanner on the show, will be a part of the reboot.
The cast has remained tight-knit since the show ended, and the programme itself still earns solid ratings with nightly repeats on the Nickelodeon network.
Music icon Prince is set to serve up a double treat for fans by releasing two new albums on the same day next month (Sep14).
The Purple Rain hitmaker has unveiled plans to release solo album Art Official Age, the follow up to 2010's 20Ten, and a collaborative project, Plectrum Electrum, with his all female band, 3rdEyeGirl.
A statement from Cameron Strang, Warner Bros Records Chairman and CEO, reads, "Prince is one of just a handful of visionary artists who have truly reshaped and redefined modern music and culture. "For the past 35 years, he has never stopped evolving, challenging himself, reinventing his sound, and pushing boundaries. In true Prince fashion, he has just given us not one, but two extraordinary albums that express the incredible range and depth of his talent."
Art Official Age and Plectrum Electrum will hit retailers on 30 September (14).
Actors Mia Farrow and Dylan Mcdermott have led the tributes to their former co-star Lord Richard Attenborough, following the British movie icon's death on Sunday (24Aug14). The exact cause of death has yet to be revealed, but Attenborough had been living in a nursing home with his wife, Sheila Sim, and was confined to a wheelchair after suffering a serious fall in 2008.
McDermott, who starred alongside Attenborough in the 1994 reboot of Christmas film Miracle on 34th Street, took to Twitter.com to pay tribute to the man who played Kris Kringle, and wrote, "Rest in peace Richard Attenborough. U (sic) were the best Santa ever."
Their co-star and former child actress Mara Wilson also added, "Sir Richard Attenborough was the only Santa Claus I ever believed in. A wonderful man. Still in shock right now. May he rest in peace."
News of Attenborough's death comes almost two weeks after Wilson's Mrs. Doubtfire co-star, Robin Williams passed away after committing suicide.
Mia Farrow, who worked with Attenborough in 1964's Guns at Batasi, also added her own tribute to her friend, and wrote, "Richard Attenborough was the kindest man I have ever had the privilege of working with. A Prince. RIP 'Pa' - and thank you," as well as comedian Ricky Gervais, who added, "RIP Richard Attenborough. One of the true greats of the silver screen."
Other Twitter tributes have come from Edgar Wright, former 007 star Samantha Bond, Rob Schneider, Stephen Amell, and British Prime Minister David Cameron, who noted that Attenborough's "acting in 'Brighton Rock' was brilliant, his directing of 'Gandhi' was stunning," and adding, "Richard Attenborough was one of the greats of cinema."
Born in Cambridge, England, he studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and served in the Royal Air Force during World War II before pursuing an acting career.
He made his debut as a sailor in the 1942 film In Which We Serve and gained popular acclaim playing ruthless young thug Pinkie Brown in Brighton Rock in 1947, eventually becoming a staple of countless British films over the next 30 years.
An accomplished stage actor, Attenborough was one of the original cast members of The Mousetrap, which went on to become the longest-running play in London's West End.
In the 1960s, he expanded his range of acting, taking on a variety of roles that exposed him to a wider audience - most notably as Squadron Leader Roger Bartlett in 1963's The Great Escape.
Hitting his stride, Attenborough won back-to-back Golden Globe Awards for Best Supporting Actor in 1967 and 1968 - for The Sand Pebbles and Doctor Dolittle.
But he'll be most fondly remembered for his behind-the-camera skills. In the late 1950s, he formed a production company, Beaver Films, and directed his first picture, Oh! What A Lovely War, in 1969.
He later scooped the Best Director and Best Picture Oscars in 1982 for his epic Gandhi, which also won him another Golden Globe Award the following year.
Other directorial credits followed - notably the 1992 biopic Chaplin, and classic 1993 movie Shadowlands - before Attenborough made a welcome return to the screen in 1993 as eccentric John Hammond in Jurassic Park.
Attenborough won a total of eight Oscars during his career. He was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1967, and a knighthood came in 1976. In 1993, he was bestowed the honour of life peer, becoming Baron Attenborough, of Richmond upon Thames, London.
And in 2006, Attenborough and his brother David, a popular broadcaster and beloved nature expert, were awarded the title of Distinguished Honorary Fellows of the University of Leicester in recognition of their services to the university.
Attenborough was also later awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Drama from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow, and was an Honorary Fellow of Bangor University.
On Boxing Day 2004, tragedy struck Attenborough's family when his eldest daughter Jane, her daughter Lucy, and her mother-in-law, also named Jane, died in the devastating Asian tsunami.
His family is expected to make a full statement about his death on Monday (25Aug14).
Actress Gwyneth Paltrow took the plunge for charity on Wednesday (20Aug14) after nominating her estranged husband Chris Martin to also endure the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. The Oscar winner was given the task of pouring freezing water over her head to raise cash and awareness for the ALS Association by three celebrities, including her personal trainer Tracy Anderson, chef Jose Andres and lifestyle expert Martha Stewart.
In a video posted on Instagram.com, Paltrow, clad in a bikini, tells her followers she is donating money to the charity and then nominates Martin, Cameron Diaz, and her fashion designer pal Stella McCartney for the stunt.
A friend then pours the ice cold water over the actress, and she runs out of frame screaming from the shock.
Paltrow and the Coldplay frontman announced their separation in March (14), and both are rumoured to have moved on from the marriage - the actress has been linked to Glee producer Brad Falchuk, while Martin has reportedly been romancing newly-single Jennifer Lawrence.
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is raising funds to battle ALS, also known as motor neurone disease and Lou Gehrig's disease.
Filmmaker James Cameron has reportedly cancelled his upcoming appearance at the Deauville Film Festival in France. The Avatar director was set to be honoured with the 40th Anniversary Award and present his new film, Deepsea Challenge 3D, at the event in September (14), but he has dropped out of appearing at the ceremony due to undisclosed reasons, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The Deauville Film Festival will kick-off on 5 September (14) and run until 14 September (14).
Will Ferrell, Jessica Chastain and Ray Liotta will also be honoured at the French festival. Organisers are also planning a special tribute to the late Robin Williams.
Disney bosses have paid a touching tribute to their Genie, Robin Williams, by painting an image of his animated Aladdin character in the stars.
The late actor's friends at the Walt Disney Company have released a photo of his magical character cleverly crafted from stars in the night sky. Disney chairman Robert Iger has also offered up a statement about Williams, which was released as the caption for the image.
It reads: "We're deeply saddened by the loss of Robin Williams, a wonderfully gifted man who touched our hearts and never failed to make us laugh. An incredible actor and a comedic genius, Robin will always be remembered for bringing some of the world's favorite characters to life, from his zany alien on ABC's Mork & Mindy to the irascible genie in Disney's Aladdin. He was a true Disney Legend, a beloved member of our family, and he will be sorely missed. We join Robin's friends and fans everywhere in mourning, and offer our thoughts and condolences to his family during this difficult time."
Meanwhile, the organisers of the annual Deauville American Film Festival in France have announced they will pay homage to Williams, who visited the event in 1988 and 1999. Calling the tragic star "an old friend", festival bosses have posted photos of the late actor at the event on Deauville's Twitter.com page. Will Ferrell, Jessica Chastain and James Cameron will he honoured with career awards at the festival, which begins on 5 September (14).
Dame Helen Mirren is to return to the Broadway stage after more than a decade to reprise her role as Queen Elizabeth II in The Audience. The actress won an Olivier Award for her portrayal of the British monarch in the play in London's West End last year (13) and now she has joined Stephen Daldry's production at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre, which is slated to begin on 8 March (15).
The show centres on the Queen's weekly meetings with British prime ministers, including Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher and David Cameron.
The play marked Mirren's second turn as Elizabeth II - she won an Oscar and a Golden Globe Award, among other accolades, for her portrayal of the royal in The Queen.
The actress last appeared on the Broadway stage in 2001's Dance of Death with Ian McKellen.
Director James Cameron brought his submarine to the American Museum of History in New York City on Monday (04Aug14) for a special screening of his new movie Deepsea Challenge 3D, about his solo journey to the ocean's deepest point. His custom-made submarine Deepsea Challenger was put on display and the Titanic moviemaker participated in a Q&A session after the screening.
Broadway producer Karen Walter Goodwin has died at the age of 66. She passed away on 30 June (14) after suffering complications from colon cancer surgery.
Goodwin was known for her financial savvy and began her career in the arts in the 1980s, helping to raise funds for a Royal Shakespeare Company production of All's Well That Ends Well in New York.
She went on to help cover costs for the original West End production of Les Miserables in 1985 and built up a close working relationship with theatre producer Cameron Mackintosh, collaborating with him on his subsequent successes Phantom of the Opera and Miss Saigon.
Her other credits include Stephen Sondheim's 1987 Broadway musical Into the Woods and Off Broadway shows Annie Warbucks, a 1993 sequel to Annie, and The Ark, a 2005 musical based on the biblical tale of Noah.