While Mario and Luigi blew their shot at a decent movie back in '93, Sonic the Hedgehog capped at a brief cameo in Wreck-It Ralph, and Donkey Kong had that straight-to-VHS flick that you were always a bit too embarrassed to rent, there are a few lesser known video game heroes who look to be earning the cinematic spotlight.
Playstation junkies might recall Ratchet & Clank, the lombax-and-robot duo who sought to defend various galaxies from the clutches of the nefarious Chairman Drek. The Sony title, which features the voice talents of James A. Taylor, David Kaye, and Jim Ward (who delivers the innocuous oaf Captain Qwark), is being developed as a big screen feature by Rainmaker Entertainment and Blockade Entertainment.
The below video, in which a bumbling Qwark attempts to hog the spotlight from his far more heroic (yet also far more diminutive) titular companions, announces the news of a Ratchet & Clank movie... one that appears to be pleaing for all of the 3D, impressive CGI, and dubstep that can be packed into a 90 minute film:
While it's true that the Ratchet and his mechanical sidekick Clank might not rank among the superpowered video game names of Mario, Sonic, Link, or Fox McCloud, the 2002 franchise did spawn a pretty devoted fanbase — one that is sure to be excited over a feature adaptation, especially one staying faithful to the characters with their established voice cast. Variety reports that animator and cinematographer Jericca Cleland has been brought on to direct, with Insomniac Games writer TJ Fixman handling the script.
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Now that obnoxiously loud commercials are officially a thing of the past, the No. 1 worst thing about being a television fan is the long, arduous wait for a beloved series known for long hiatuses to return. Though, knowing that someone else has seen it long before you have is a close second. No one knows that pain quite like Stephen Colbert who was outraged — outraged I tell you! — when he discovered that First Lady Michelle Obama (or, as he hilariously quipped, Lady Michelle Antoinette) got her hands on the hotly anticipated Season 3 premiere of Downton Abbey before we all get to watch on January 6.
The First Lady may be making her fellow Americans awfully jealous, but Colbert is never one to let his nation down. The host upped the ante and combined Downton with an equally beloved and anticipated, albeit slightly different, drama series, Breaking Bad for the unbelievably awesome mashup Breaking Abbey. With Downton Abbey cast members (who are continually proving to be some delightful, good-humored people) Hugh Bonneville (Robert Crawley), Jim Carter (Mr. Carson), and Rob James-Collier (Thomas Barrow) on board and channeling their inner Heisenbergs and Jesse Pinkmans, the parody trades meth for tea leaves and gives the AMC series' rough-around-the-edges dialogue some British flair. ("Mo' money, mo' quandaries!")
If this doesn't curb your hankering for Downton Abbey and/or Breaking Bad, someone may have to pop a cap in one's ass. This sketch — which also features a thugged-out Mark Consuelos as a client ("I'll take that s**t with some milk!") — is more addictive for TV junkies than some sweet blue tea, not to mention yet another example of why The Colbert Report deserves to get their damn Emmy already. Watch the very funny, very NSFW Breaking Abbey clip here:
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Okay, Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul, your turn: Downton Bad. Make it happen, Colbert Nation.
[Photo credit: Comedy Central]
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Officially married since last year, Tom Green and Drew Barrymore tied the knot again this past weekend in a private, formal ceremony for friends and family in Malibu, according to Variety.
Hollywood icons Uma Thurman (Actor Award) and Robert De Niro (Bravo Lifetime Achievement Award) will receive "Gothams" at October's 2001 Independent Feature Project's Gotham Awards in Manhattan.
Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and longtime CMA critic Waylon Jennings will lead a lengthy list of inductees this fall into the Country Music Association Hall of Fame.
The Sopranos co-star Robert Iler, 16, has agreed to testify before a grand jury in regard to charges that he and two friends mugged two teenage Brazilian tourists, according to The Associated Press.
Dennis Hopper has agreed to star in TV's Flatland, which the Hollywood Reporter describes as The Matrix meets Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
Australia's animal rights group is seeking footage of last year's Survivor incident where a wild pig was killed to see if the event constituted a crime, reports The Associated Press.
Happy Trails: The Roy Rogers-Dale Evans museum will have to move from its California home due to tax assessments. The likely landing spot is Branson, Mo., according to The Associated Press.
Canadian secretary Sera Kirk won San Jose State's annual Bulwer-Lytton contest for the worst opening sentence of a novel with "A small assortment of astonishingly loud brass instruments raced each other lustily to the respective ends of their distinct musical choices as the gates flew open to release a torrent of tawny fur comprised of angry yapping bullets that nipped at Desdemona's ankles, causing her to reflect once again (as blood filled her sneakers and she fought her way through the panicking crowd) that the annual Running of the Pomeranians in Liechtenstein was a stupid idea."
NBC will proceed with plans to syndicate a daily version of the hit game show The Weakest Link starting in January, now that the show has been sold in the top five media markets--clearing Los Angeles Monday--Variety reports.
French film controversy
Ricky on stage
"Weakest Link" video game
Sharon Stone drops restraining order
Sharon Stone (The Quick and The Dead, Basic Instinct, The Muse) has dropped her request for a permanent restraining order against Italian visitor Agostino P'omato, according to reports by People magazine.
Stone was granted a temporary restraining order on March 19 to keep P'omato at least 100 yards away from her, her husband and their son. P'omato allegedly arrived at Stone's house in the Los Angeles area saying that he wanted to "take her and marry her."
P'omato's family convinced him to return to Italy, which prompted Stone to drop the request for a permanent restraining order, said her lawyer.
Redgrave honored at GLAAD media awards
Vanessa Redgrave received the Excellence in Media Award at Monday's 12th Annual Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) Media Awards in New York.
Redgrave's daughter, actress Natasha Richardson, made the presentation. In a report filed by People, Redgrave told the attendees, "If Anne Heche can play a lesbian, so can I. I think I have done my part for heterosexuality." The award honors a member of the entertainment community who has made a significant difference in promoting equal rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people.
Also at the ceremony, Kathleen Turner presented Liz Smith the Vito Russo Award, which honors a lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered member of the entertainment or media community for their outstanding contribution in combating homophobia.
Other guests and presenters included: host Mo Gaffney, Joan Collins, Gina Gershon, Sharon Gless, Florence Henderson, Jill Henessey, Michael Imperioli (The Sopranos), Susan Lucci and Eden Riegal (All My Children), Lou Reed, and John Ritter.
Splittsville for Gary Oldman
Gary Oldman's (Hannibal, The Fifth Element, Lost in Space) wife Donya Fiorentino filed papers to end their marriage due to irreconcilable differences. The AP reports that the couple of four years separated on Friday, the same day the papers were filed.
The Oscar-nominated Oldman (Best Supporting Actor for last year's The Contender) and Fiorentino have two sons together, Gulliver and Charlie. Oldman has had two prior marriages, with Lesley Manville and Uma Thurman (Gattaca, Pulp Fiction, The Avengers). Oldman has a third son with Manville.
Director Michael Ritchie dies
Director Michael Ritchie (Smile, Downhill Racer, The Golden Child) is dead of prostate cancer at the age of 62, says the New York Times.
Ritchie was often unconventional, as evidenced by the Holly Hunter feature The Positively True Adventures of the Alleged Texas Cheerleader-Murdering Mom, which aired on HBO in 1993. Ritchie also directed major flops, including The Island.
The last film Ritchie completed was last year's The Fantasticks.
French rape film sparks controversy upon arrival in U.S.
The controversial French film Baise-Moi (Rape Me) is set for release in New York and Los Angeles this June, reports Variety.
The film features two stars of the French adult film world, Raffaela Anderson and Karen Bach, and tells the tale of a prostitute and a rape victim who embark on a bloody, violent road trip. The film portrays a violent rape and its effect on the victim, who is spurred to acts of violence.
Censors, according to Variety, banned the film from mainstream movie theaters in France. In England, the film was screened only after the distributor cut 10 seconds of particularly objectionable footage.
The film is based on the novel of the same name, written by Virginie Despentes.
News blackout blankets resumption of WGA talks
No reporters, no cameras, no statements, no photo opportunities.
That is the "cone of silence" surrounding the negotiations between the Writers Guild of America and the movie and TV alliance, as talks resumed at 2:30 p.m. yesterday.
Designed to keep negotiators focused on reaching an agreement, the blackout, according to Variety, allows for only a bare bones account at the end of the day. The arrangement takes the negotiations out of the public arena, where they have been since they began on January 22.
With the May 2 expiration of the current writers' deal, it is imperative that the two sides reach an accord as soon as possible. The last round of talks broke off on March 1, with the parties more than $100 million apart and a strike looming on the horizon.
Ricky's role call
It's curtains for singer Ricky Martin: the Latin heartthrob is in talks to star in Zorro, a stage production to premiere in London's West End, according to Britain's Sun tabloid. The musical, produced by Adam Kenwright, is also attracting singer Robbie Williams, who has expressed an interest in writing some of the show's lyrics.
Country crooners to wed
Two of Nashville's biggest stars--Lorrie Morgan and Sammy Kershaw --announced on Tuesday's Live with Regis and Kelly that they plan to get hitched. The couple has set a wedding date of Sept. 29. Morgan, 41, and Kershaw, 43, have both had previous marriages.
"Weakest Link" video game?
The latest game-show sensation to sweep America could invade stores later this year. According to Variety, British phenomenon The Weakest Link is being converted into a video game by Activision, Inc. The only catch: they're scrambling to get it produced before the hype surrounding the show dies down. Though typical video games take 18 months to produce, Activision is aiming for an October release.