"Jen is a really nice person. I hope she and Justin do get married, but I don't have any dates or anything like that." British documentary-maker Louis Theroux is pleased his actor cousin Justin is engaged to Hollywood superstar Jennifer Aniston.
We hope you've fully recovered from the Red Wedding, because there's plenty more drama, action and death coming your way this spring. HBO has unveiled its spring premiere dates, with Game of Thrones set to pick back up on April 6 at 9 PM. And if you prefer your political power grabs to take place in the Oval Office rather than on the battlefield, never fear: Veep will premiere right afterwards, at 10 PM. The network has also announced the starts of several new shows and the tentative air dates of several new miniseries and movies that are sure to make a major impression on the Emmys committee.
First up is Silicon Valley, which will follow Veep on April 6 at 10:30, before the second season of Vice picks up later that week on Friday, April 14. Emily Mortimer will take a break from flirting with Jeff Daniels on The Newsroom on Wednesday, April 19, when her new sitcom Doll and Em premieres with two back-to-back episodes. Later in the spring will bring the premieres of The Leftovers, the new series from Damon Lindelof and Ryan Murphy's The Normal Heart, which will air sometime in May. Finally, Olive Kitteridge will make its debut at some point later this year, before HBO wraps things up with the fifth and final season of Boardwalk Empire.
Just in case you're having a hard time keeping all of that straight, we've created a handy rundown of HBO's new and returning shows, presented in the order we're most excited for. You can also check out the complete list of premiere dates and times here.
8. Vice Unfortunately, it seems like the second season of this news show will end up getting lost in the midst of all of the other big spring premieres. Sorry, Vice, but unless you've got a Red Wedding of your own up your sleeves, we're going to find it hard to tear our attention away from Game of Thrones.
7. The Normal HeartIt might be a little early to start making Emmy predictions, but you should consider putting your money on this one. Based on a Tony Award-winning play, The Normal Heart deals with the beginning of the HIV-AIDS epidemic of the 1980s, and with the politics and prejudices that came with being gay during that period of time. The cast includes Taylor Kitsch, Matt Bomer, Mark Ruffalo and Jim Parsons, and is bound to earn the network the same kind of ratings and accolades that Behind the Candelabra earned last year. Our only reservation is that it's directed by Ryan Murphy, who can be a bit inconsistent when it comes to the quality of his projects, but we're willing to ignore our hesitation for a story this intense and touching.
6. Olive KitteridgeBased on Elizabeth Strout's novel, this miniseries tells "the poignantly sweet, acerbically funny and devastatingly tragic story of a seemingly placid New England town wrought with illicit affairs, crime and tragedy, told through the lens of Olive whose wicked wit and harsh demeanor mask a warm but troubled heart and staunch moral center." You might not be hooked based on the description, but with a cast that includes Frances McDormand, Richard Jenkins and Bill Murray, this is definitely going to be a miniseries worth checking out. Oh, and did we mention that Tom Hanks is producing it? Sold.
5. Doll and EmCo-written by actress Emily Mortimer, Doll and Em is a semi-improvisational comedy about the effects of a Hollywood actress hiring her best friend to be her personal assistant. Doll will be played by Dolly Wells, the series' co-writer and Mortimer's real-life best friend. Not a lot of information has been released about the show, but we're imagining something along the lines of Extras or Flight of the Concords in tone, both of which were shows that dealt with friendship and showbusiness, in their own unique ways. The premise has us intrigued and we're hoping that the show itself manages to live up to it.
4. Silicon ValleyThis new sitcom, which comes from the mind of Office Space and King of the Hill creator Mike Judge, centers around tech billionaires in Silicon Valley, "the modern-day epicenter of the high-tech gold rush, where the people most qualified to succeed are the least capable of handling success." Judge has said that he hopes the show will be Entourage for the San Francisco set, and will focus on a similarly close group of friends, who are unprepared for the success that comes their way. With Veep as a lead-in, Silicon Valley should manage to do pretty well, as there is likely to be a good deal of overlap between audiences. There's still plenty more to find out about this show, but it's already go us intrigued, so Judge is off to a pretty good start.
3. The LeftoversWe've still got a good deal of time to go before The Leftovers hits airwaves, but we're already pretty excited. Based on the novel by Tom Perotta, the story revolves around the people who were left behind on earth after a Rapture-type event caused a good deal of the population to simply disappear from the face of the earth. The compelling premise is compounded by a cast that includes Christopher Eccleston, Justin Theroux and Liv Tyler, and the series is being adapted by Damon Lindelof. Fans of Lost know that he knows how to create an addicting television show, but we are a little bit worried about how well he'll managed to pull the whole thing together. He'll have a difficult time making the show stand out from all of the other apocalyptic dramas currently on television, but we have faith that The Leftovers will become our newest addiction.
2. Game of ThronesWith a cast of thousands, and characters constantly dying, getting kidnapped and losing limbs, it can be a little hard to keep track of everything that's going down in Westeros. This season, Danerys has a ship, and army and her dragons, and she's more determined than ever to regain her throne. Sansa and Tyrion are living unhappily ever after, Jamie's lost his hand, but not his friendship with Brienne, Arya's still on the run and Joffrey's got a wedding of his own coming up. And since we know how well wedding tend to in this universe, it's bound to be entertaining. It's impossible to predict what will happen next on this show, which is what makes it so addicting, but at least we can always take comfort in the fact that no matter what happens, Jon Snow will continue to know nothing.
1. VeepWhen last we left Selina Meyers and her well-meaning but generally-incompetent staff, they had just found out that the President had decided not to run for re-election, which would put her at the top of the ticket, and bring her that much closer to her dream of a seat in the Oval Office. Of course, since this is Veep, there's no way that her presidential preparations will go smoothly, and that's just what we can't wait for. Julia Louis-Dreyfus is wonderful as Selina - and she's got the Emmys to prove it! - and there's very little we love more than watching her hurl insults at Jonah or embarass herself at a major press event. And since the last season of Veep predicted the government shutdown in the spring, it's probably best to tune in just in case they manage to foreshadow any more major political crises.
A homeless man has been sentenced for posing as British documentary maker Louis Theroux and tricking staff at a bar into letting him stay overnight. Allan Debenham booked two nights at the Duke of York in Somerset, England, claiming he was Theroux, who is best known for examining controversial subjects including porn stars and the controversial U.S. religious organisation Westboro Baptist Church.
Debenham insisted bosses at the BBC would cover his costs, but he aroused suspicion during his stay when he rang from his room to request cigarettes and bottles of wine.
The 39 year old, who suffers from a drinking problem, pleaded guilty earlier this month (Jun13) to making a false representation, and has been ordered to pay $256 (£165) to the pub. He was also slapped with a 12-month community sentence.
The real Theroux was clearly amused by the case, tweeting, "I love that it wasn't his appearance that tipped them off but the fact that he asked for 'fags' not 'cigarettes'... I am partial to a bottle of cava though."
In a post-Harry Potter Avatar and Lord of the Rings world the descriptors "sci-fi" and "fantasy" conjure up particular imagery and ideas. The Hunger Games abolishes those expectations rooting its alternate universe in a familiar reality filled with human characters tangible environments and terrifying consequences. Computer graphics are a rarity in writer/director Gary Ross' slow-burn thriller wisely setting aside effects and big action to focus on star Jennifer Lawrence's character's emotional struggle as she embarks on the unthinkable: a 24-person death match on display for the entire nation's viewing pleasure. The final product is a gut-wrenching mature young adult fiction adaptation diffused by occasional meandering but with enough unexpected choices to keep audiences on their toes.
Panem a reconfigured post-apocalyptic America is sectioned off into 12 unique districts and ruled under an iron thumb by the oppressive leaders of The Capitol. To keep the districts producing their specific resources and prevent them from rebelling The Capitol created The Hunger Games an annual competition pitting two 18-or-under "tributes" from each district in a battle to the death. During the ritual tribute "Reaping " teenage Katniss (Lawrence) watches as her 12-year-old sister Primrose is chosen for battle—and quickly jumps to her aid becoming the first District 12 citizen to volunteer for the games. Joined by Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) a meek baker's son and the second tribute Effie the resident designer and Haymitch a former Hunger Games winner-turned-alcoholic-turned-mentor Katniss rides off to The Capitol to train and compete in the 74th Annual Hunger Games.
The greatest triumph of The Hunger Games is Ross' rich realization of the book's many worlds: District 12 is painted as a reminiscent Southern mining town haunting and vibrant; The Capitol is a utopian metropolis obsessed with design and flair; and The Hunger Games battleground is a sprawling forest peppered with Truman Show-esque additions that remind you it's all being controlled by overseers. The small-scale production value adds to the character-first approach and even when the story segues to larger arenas like a tickertape parade in The Capitol's grand Avenue of Tributes hall it's all about Katniss.
For fans the script hits every beat a nearly note-for-note interpretation of author Suzanne Collins' original novel—but those unfamiliar shouldn't worry about missing anything. Ross knows his way around a sharp screenplay (he's the writer of Big Pleasantville and Seabiscuit) and he's comfortable dropping us right into the action. His characters are equally as colorful as Panem Harrelson sticking out as the former tribute enlivened by the chance to coach winners. He's funny he's discreet he's shaded—a quality all the cast members share. As a director Ross employs a distinct often-grating perspective. His shaky cam style emphasizes the reality of the story but in fight scenarios—and even simple establishing shots of District 12's goings-on—the details are lost in motion blur.
But the dread of the scenario is enough to make Hunger Games an engrossing blockbuster. The lead-up to the actual competition is an uncomfortable and biting satire of reality television sports and everything that commands an audience in modern society. Katniss' brooding friend Gale tells her before she departs "What if nobody watched?" speculating that carnage might end if people could turn away. Unfortunately they can't—forcing Katniss and Peeta to become "stars" of the Hunger Games. The duo are pushed to gussy themselves up put on a show and play up their romance for better ratings. Lawrence channels her reserved Academy Award-nominated Winter's Bone character to inhabit Katniss' frustration with the system. She's great at hunting but she doesn't want to kill. She's compassionate and considerate but has no interest in bowing down to the system. She's a leader but she knows full well she's playing The Capitol's game. Even with 23 other contestants vying for the top spot—like American Idol with machetes complete with Ryan Seacrest stand-in Caesar Flickerman (the dazzling Stanley Tucci)—Katniss' greatest hurdle is internal. A brave move for a movie aimed at a young audience.
By the time the actual Games roll around (the movie clocks in at two and a half hours) there's a need to amp up the pace that never comes and The Hunger Games loses footing. Katniss' goal is to avoid the action hiding in trees and caves waiting patiently for the other tributes to off themselves—but the tactic isn't all that thrilling for those watching. Luckily Lawrence Hutcherson and the ensemble of young actors still deliver when they cross paths and particular beats pack all the punch an all-out deathwatch should. PG-13 be damned the film doesn't skimp on the bloodshed even when it comes to killing off children. The Hunger Games bites off a lot for the first film of a franchise and does so bravely and boldly. It may not make it to the end alive but it doesn't go down without a fight.
Looks like Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux continue to get closer and closer. Theroux introduced the Just Go With It actress to his documentarian cousin, Louis Theroux, while they were in London on Wednesday night. Right after hitting the red carpet premiere of Aniston's latest film, Horrible Bosses, the couple was spotted heading hand-in-hand to Shoreditch House, a swanky members-only club in London. A witness saw Justin's cousin join the pair half an hour after their arrival. The insider observed that "Louis obviously approved [of Jennifer]...it looked like they were having a great time, and they all seemed instantly at ease with each other. Justin looked proud of Jen and seemed quite manly and protective." Looks like Jen got two thumbs up! - US
Demi Lovato may be working her way back into the spotlight, but according to the star she's still on the road to recovery. Lovato recently completed treatment for "emotional and physical issues" involving bulimia, anorexia, self-mutilation, depression, and bipolar disorder. So you can imagine that it's a work in progress. Lovato is constantly work towards a complete recovery every day and claims her issues stem from her childhood stating, "They are issues that every girl deals with...cutting has become so common with so many girls, and in almost every family, people have tried it or experimented with it. And there is addiction all over the place." The singer also adds, "it doesn't make it easier being in front of cameras while I'm trying to be in recovery from an eating disorder." She may want to think about a career change if that's the case. - People
Amour is in the air for the newly married Reese Witherspoon and Jim Toth. Nearly four months after tying the knot in March, the newlyweds flew to Paris as part of their honeymoon. The couple touched down at the Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris on Thursday, after flying in from Los Angeles. This will be their second vacation as a married couple since they took a family trip in Belize with the kids Ava and Deacon in April. Now the duo can enjoy some quality alone time together in one of the most romantic cities in the world -- The City of Love! - People