Getty Images/Kevin Winter
San Diego Comic-Con: the annual gathering of comic book nerds, blockbuster action movie fans and the slightly terrifying people who still watch Supernatural religiously. It's the biggest pop culture event of the year, a time when studios bring the biggest and most shriek-inducing stars together to unveil new projects and showcase the exciting things fans will eventually be camped out all night for. And even though not all of us are lucky enough to experience Comic-Con in person, that doesn't mean we don't deserve to get all the up-to-the-minute news, reports and surprises. Since we here at Hollywood.com don't want you to miss out on all the excitement happening in Hall H or the surprises being unveiled over the weekend, we're running down the biggest news to come out of San Diego during the convention to ensure you can stay on top of everything, whether you're stuck in the office or waiting in line for another sold out panel.
Dr. Strange? More Like Dr. Nope Sure, there are other panels happening at Comic-Con this year, but all anyone really cares about are the new films and casts that Marvel is set to unveil on Saturday. And since Dr. Strange just happens to be one of those films and Benedict Cumberbatch is rumored to be the frontrunner for the role, MTV just happened to ask him to reveal whether he will indeed be playing the super-powered sorcerer. His answer? “As far as I’m aware, even if that was the case, it couldn’t work out because I’m doing a little play called ‘Hamlet’ in London, so I don’t think I could even if that was in the cards. It sounds like a fantastic project. It’s a shame if I miss out, but who knows?” So, it’s not an outright “no,” but it seems like Marvel might have to look elsewhere for their Dr. Strange.
There’s No Stan Lee Cameo This Time A living legend in the comic book world, Stan Lee has basically become the face of Comic-Con, attending all but a select few since its inception over forty years ago. Unfortunately, we’re going to have to add 2014 to the absentee list; according to The Hollywood Reporter, Lee has cancelled his appearance after losing his voice to a bad bout of laryngitis, and he certainly can’t command a convention center without a voice. Don’t get too upset, though: his cameo in the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy has already been filmed, so no illness will keep you from seeing him then.
A 24 Movie May Be In the Works The key word there is “maybe.” According to Deadline, star Kiefer Sutherland and executive producer/director John Cassar mentioned during the 24 panel that officially kicked off this year’s con that they were “still talking” about a movie now that the series’ reboot has been so successful. Of course, that didn’t stop fans from freaking out about the mere possibility of it, but Comic-Con’s a place for overwhelming enthusiasm. They could announce another Ryan Reynolds Green Lantern film and people would be excited.
Twenty Hours to Cumberbatch Waiting in absurdly long lines are a time-honored tradition of Comic-Con, but some of them are redefining the word “dedication,” like the ones who lined up to see Cumberbatch on the Dreamworks Animation panel a whole 20 hours early (via CinemaBlend). That’s right: they waited almost an entire day to watch Cumberbatch talk about voicing a cartoon wolf in the new Penguins of Madagascar movie. Not Sherlock, not The Hobbit, not Star Trek. Penguins.
Na na na na na na na… Batsuit! If you thought the set picture of Ben Affleck in the latest incarnation of the Batsuit was too dark to actually see anything – seriously, has Zach Snyder ever met a shadow he didn’t feel the need to add in? – then DC has answered your prayers. The studio unveiled Affleck’s redesigned cape and cowl for Comic-Con visitors to compare against the ones in the comics live and in-person, and /Film has plenty of pictures for those of us who prefer to critique costume choices from our own homes.
Avengers Assemble (Literally) In anticipation of their no doubt world-shattering panel this weekend, Marvel has released several exclusive posters for the Avengers: Age of Ultron featuring concept art from the film. But like Beyonce’s visual album, all of the individually exciting parts come together to make an even more exciting whole. In this case, it’s a bigger group image that sees the team fighting side-by-side. The Dissolve has already started putting it together for you, so as long as you find that last corner piece, you should be all set.
Australian singers Troy Cassar-Daley and Adam Harvey have withdrawn their nominations for the upcoming Country Music Association of Australia (CMAA) awards after veteran John Williamson declared them undeserving of the show's top honour. The duo landed six nods, including a nomination for Album of the Year, for their Great Country Songbook collaboration, but the achievement was soured this week (beg09Dec13) when Williamson resigned as president of the CMAA over claims the organisation's annual awards show has become too American.
He publicly criticised artists including Keith Urban for their American-style sound, and slammed Cassar-Daley and Harvey's inclusion in the Best Album nominations as the record is made up of U.S. song covers.
In an open letter, he writes, "The fact that it (Great Country Songbook) was even nominated blows me away. I feel that the organisation has got the wrong message and I don't want to be a part of it."
He adds of Urban, who is nominated in the Best Male Artist category, "There should be an award for international artists who do the American thing. He gets awards over there. Maybe we could give him an international award, but I don't think that should be recognised as Australian country music."
The rant has now prompted Cassar-Daley and Harvey to withdraw their nominations.
Harvey says of the decision, "It would have been awkward. I don't want the Golden Guitars to be about who didn't deserve to win or who shouldn't be there... To be honest, I have been hurt by some of the comments, not only from Willo (Williamson), but from others I thought were really good friends as more people weighed in on this debate. Our intentions in making this record were good and still are."
The singer also insists he is especially saddened by Williamson's stance as they previously earned a CMAA nomination together for their cover of an American classic, Roger Miller's King Of The Road.
He adds, "John Williamson did ring me himself, so I'll give him that, and said he hoped he hadn't lost a friend over this but I had to tell him I was pretty disappointed. It was his idea for us to do King Of The Road and he was happy for that to be nominated. He told me he now regrets that."
Harvey concluded by defending Urban: "Keith Urban is proudly Australian and should be celebrated. Australia has a fantastic country music industry and I think there's plenty of room for all of us."
You might recall, if you think back to the age-old era of 2011, the REELZ Network miniseries The Kennedys, the Greg Kinnear and Katie Holmes starrer that chronicled the former First Family of the United States, strangers neither to glory nor tragedy. If you do remember the series, you'll likely also remember the none too favorable reviews it received from television critics. They weren't Guy Fieri bad, but they were nothing to write home about, either. Still, the family perseveres — REELZ is planning a sequel to The Kennedys, as announced by network President Stan E. Hubbard.
The second series will find source material in the book After Camelot: A Personal History of the Kennedy Family, written by J. Randy Taraborrelli. In a press release, Hubbard states, "With The Kennedys miniseries we saw tremendous response to powerful storytelling along with an intense interest in this remarkable family. In his book, J. Randy Taraborrelli tells the incredible true story of the Kennedys from 1968 to today."
Hubbard continues: "The Kennedy family continued to make an indelible mark on the life of America and the world after Robert Kennedy’s assassination, including universal healthcare and the creation of the Special Olympics."
As with the first series, the forthcoming sequel is being produced by Muse Entertainment.
[Photo Credit: Kennedys Productions (Ontario) Inc. and Zak Cassar/Reelz]
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The 2012 Producer's Guild of America Awards are approaching, celebrating both Theatrical Motion Pictures and Long-Form Television with a new batch of nominees that the PGA has just released. Many of the films are no surprise—crossovers with the upcoming Golden Globes nominees abound. For theatrical motion picture include The Artist, The Descendants and Midnight in Paris; nominees for animated theatrical motion picture include Rango and The Adventures of Tintin.
The television nominees also offer some unsurprising names, including Mildred Pierce, Downton Abbey, Parks and Recreation, Boardwalk Empire,Game of Thrones, Mad Men and The Colbert Report.
Darryl F. Zanuck Producer of the Year Award in Theatrical Motion Pictures
Producer: Thomas Langmann
Producers: Judd Apatow, Barry Mendel, Clayton Townsend
Producers: Jim Burke, Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor
THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO
Producers: Ceán Chaffin, Scott Rudin
Producers: Michael Barnathan, Chris Columbus, Brunson Green
Producers: Graham King, Martin Scorsese
THE IDES OF MARCH
Producers: George Clooney, Grant Heslov, Brian Oliver
MIDNIGHT IN PARIS
Producers: Letty Aronson, Stephen Tenenbaum
Producers: Michael De Luca, Rachael Horovitz, Brad Pitt
Producers: Kathleen Kennedy, Steven Spielberg
The Producers Guild of America Producer of the Year Award in Animated Theatrical Motion Pictures
THE ADVENTURES OF TINTIN
Producers: Peter Jackson, Kathleen Kennedy, Steven Spielberg
Producer: Denise Ream
KUNG FU PANDA 2
Producer: Melissa Cobb
PUSS IN BOOTS
Producers: Joe M. Aguilar, Latifa Ouaou
Producers: John B. Carls, Gore Verbinski
The Producers Guild of America Producer of the Year Award in Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures
BEATS, RHYMES & LIFE: THE TRAVELS OF A TRIBE CALLED QUEST
Producers: Michael Rapaport, Edward Parks (*additional producers eligibility pending arbitration completion)
BILL CUNNINGHAM NEW YORK
Producer: Philip Gefter
Producer: Simon Chinn
Producer: James Gay-Rees
Producers: Cameron Crowe, Michelle Panek
The David L. Wolper Producer of the Year Award in Long-Form Television (Movies of the Week and Miniseries)
CINEMA VERITE (HBO)
Producers: Zanne Devine, Karyn McCarthy
DOWNTON ABBEY (Masterpiece) (PBS)
Producers: Julian Fellowes, Nigel Marchant, Gareth Neame
THE KENNEDYS (ReelzChannel)
Producers: Jon Cassar, Jonathan Koch, Stephen Kronish, Steve Michaels, Michael Prupas, Jamie Paul Rock, Joel Surnow
MILDRED PIERCE (HBO)
Producers: Todd Haynes, Pamela Koffler, Ilene S. Landress, Christine Vachon
TOO BIG TO FAIL (HBO)
Producers: Carol Fenelon, Jeffrey Levine, Paula Weinstein
The Danny Thomas Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Comedy:
30 ROCK (NBC)
Producers: Robert Carlock, Tina Fey, Marci Klein, Jerry Kupfer, Lorne Michaels, David Miner, Jeff Richmond, John Riggi, Don Scardino
THE BIG BANG THEORY (CBS)
Producers: Chuck Lorre, Steve Molaro, Faye Oshima, Bill Prady
Producers: Ian Brennan, Dante Di Loreto, Brad Falchuk, Ryan Murphy, Kenneth Silverstein
MODERN FAMILY (ABC)
Producers: Paul Corrigan, Abraham Higginbotham, Steven Levitan, Christopher Lloyd, Jeff Morton, Jeffrey Richman, Dan O’Shannon, Brad Walsh, Bill Wrubel, Danny Zuker
PARKS AND RECREATION (NBC)
Producers: Greg Daniels, Dan Goor, Howard Klein, Amy Poehler, Morgan Sackett, Michael Schur
The Norman Felton Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Drama
BOARDWALK EMPIRE (HBO)
Producers: Eugene Kelly, Howard Korder, Stephen Levinson, Martin Scorsese, Rudd Simmons, Tim Van Patten, Terence Winter
Producers: Sara Colleton, John Goldwyn, Chip Johannessen, Robert Lloyd Lewis
GAME OF THRONES (HBO)
Producers: David Benioff, Frank Doelger, Mark Huffam, Carolyn Strauss, D.B. Weiss
THE GOOD WIFE (CBS)
Producers: Brooke Kennedy, Michelle King, Robert King, Ridley Scott, Tony Scott, David W. Zucker
MAD MEN (AMC)
Producers: Jonathan Abrahams, Scott Hornbacher, Andre Jacquemetton, Maria Jacquemetton, Blake McCormick, Dwayne Shattuck, Dahvi Waller, Matthew Weiner
The Award for Outstanding Producer of Live Entertainment & Talk Television
THE COLBERT REPORT (Comedy Central)
Producers: Meredith Bennett, Stephen T. Colbert, Richard Dahm, Tanya Michnevich Bracco, Tom Purcell, Jon Stewart (*additional producers eligibility pending arbitration completion)
THE ELLEN DEGENERES SHOW (Syndicated)
Producers: Mary Connelly, Ellen DeGeneres, Melissa Geiger Schrift, Ed Glavin, Andy Lassner, Kevin A. Leman II, Jonathan Norman, Derek Westervelt
REAL TIME WITH BILL MAHER (HBO)
Producers: Scott Carter, Sheila Griffiths, Marc Gurvitz, Dean Johnsen, Bill Maher, Billy Martin
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE (NBC)
Producers: Ken Aymong, Steve Higgins, Erik Kenward, Lorne Michaels, John Mulaney
THE 64TH ANNUAL TONY AWARDS (CBS)
Producers: Ricky Kirshner, Glenn Weiss
The Award for Outstanding Producer of Competition Television
THE AMAZING RACE (CBS)
Producers: Jerry Bruckheimer, Elise Doganieri, Jonathan Littman, Bertram van Munster, Mark Vertullo
AMERICAN IDOL (FOX)
Producers: Charles Boyd, Cecile Frot-Coutaz, Simon Fuller, Patrick Lynn, Nigel Lythgoe, Megan Michaels, Ken Warwick
DANCING WITH THE STARS (ABC)
Producers: Ashley Edens Shaffer, Conrad Green, Joe Sungkur, Rob Wade
PROJECT RUNWAY (Lifetime)
Producers: Jane Cha Cutler, Desiree Gruber, Tim Gunn, Heidi Klum, Jonathan Murray, Sara Rea, Colleen Sands
TOP CHEF (Bravo)
Producers: Daniel Cutforth, Casey Kriley, Jane Lipsitz, Dan Murphy, Nan Strait
The Award for Outstanding Producer of Non-Fiction Television:
30 FOR 30 (ESPN)
Producers: John Dahl, Connor Schell, Bill Simmons
AMERICAN MASTERS (PBS)
Producers: Susan Lacy, Julie Sacks
ANTHONY BOURDAIN: NO RESERVATIONS (Travel Channel)
Producers: Christopher Collins, Julie Lei, Lydia Tenaglia, Tom Vitale
DEADLIEST CATCH (Discovery Channel)
Producers: Thom Beers, Jeff Conroy, John Gray, Sheila McCormack, Ethan Prochnik, Bill Pruitt, Matt Renner
UNDERCOVER BOSS (CBS)
Producers: Chris Carlson, Susan Hoenig, Eli Holzman, Sandi Johnson, Stephen Lambert, Allison Schermerhorn
ANDERSON COOPER 360º (CNN)
BBC WORLD NEWS AMERICA (BBC)
NBC NEWS WITH BRIAN WILLIAMS (NBC)
THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW (MSNBC)
60 MINUTES (CBS)
MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL (ESPN)
REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL (HBO)
SPORTS CENTER (ESPN)
30 FOR 30 (ESPN)
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP (ABC / ESPN / ESPN2)
U.S. OPEN TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIP (CBS / ESPN2 / Tennis Channel)
DORA THE EXPLORER (Nickelodeon)
PHINEAS AND FERB (Disney Channel)
SESAME STREET (PBS)
SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS (Nickelodeon)
ASK A NINJA (blip.tv)
THE GUILD (WatchTheGuild.com)
PARKS AND RECREATION PRESENTS: "APRIL AND ANDY'S ROAD TRIP" (NBC.com)
30 ROCK PRESENTS JACK DONAGHY, EXECUTIVE SUPERHERO (NBC.com)
WEB THERAPY (LStudio.com)
*These programs were not vetted for producer eligibility this year but winners in these categories will be announced at the official ceremony on January 21st.
Source: Producer's Guild
The highly-anticipated miniseries, starring Holmes as Jackie Kennedy, was cancelled last week (ends09Jan11) after History Channel executives decided the final product was "not a fit" for the network.
Subsequent reports suggested it was scrapped following "intense" pressure from the clan, including Caroline Kennedy - the only surviving child of John F. Kennedy and Jackie Kennedy - and Arnold Schwarzenegger's wife Maria Shriver, daughter of Eunice Kennedy Shriver.
Director Jon Cassar has now admitted he faced pressure from the real life Kennedys before the show went into production, but he still can't understand why History Channel chiefs decided to drop the show.
He tells Reuters, "We were very surprised. The actual product takes no political stance one way or the other...
"I doubt they've (the Kennedys) even seen it. They were objecting to it before it started. They were objecting to the idea of it."