Filmmaker Charles Kent was among Vitagraph's first directors. He primarily made films adapted from literature and occasionally starred in them. He was the first to employ creative close-ups and this c...
For the bulk of every Rocky and Bullwinkle episode, moose and squirrel would engage in high concept escapades that satirized geopolitics, contemporary cinema, and the very fabrics of the human condition. With all of that to work with, there's no excuse for why the pair and their Soviet nemeses haven't gotten a decent movie adaptation. But the ingenious Mr. Peabody and his faithful boy Sherman are another story, intercut between Rocky and Bullwinkle segments to teach kids brief history lessons and toss in a nearly lethal dose of puns. Their stories and relationship were much simpler, which means that bringing their shtick to the big screen would entail a lot more invention — always risky when you're dealing with precious material.
For the most part, Mr. Peabody & Sherman handles the regeneration of its heroes aptly, allowing for emotionally substance in their unique father-son relationship and all the difficulties inherent therein. The story is no subtle metaphor for the difficulties surrounding gay adoption, with society decreeing that a dog, no matter how hyper-intelligent, cannot be a suitable father. The central plot has Peabody hosting a party for a disapproving child services agent and the parents of a young girl with whom 7-year-old Sherman had a schoolyard spat, all in order to prove himself a suitable dad. Of course, the WABAC comes into play when the tots take it for a spin, forcing Peabody to rush to their rescue.
Getting down to personals, we also see the left brain-heavy Peabody struggle with being father Sherman deserves. The bulk of the emotional marks are hit as we learn just how much Peabody cares for Sherman, and just how hard it has been to accept that his only family is growing up and changing.
But more successful than the new is the film's handling of the old — the material that Peabody and Sherman purists will adore. They travel back in time via the WABAC Machine to Ancient Egypt, the Renaissance, and the Trojan War, and 18th Century France, explaining the cultural backdrop and historical significance of the settings and characters they happen upon, all with that irreverent (but no longer racist) flare that the old cartoons enjoyed. And oh... the puns.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman is a f**king treasure trove of some of the most amazingly bad puns in recent cinema. This effort alone will leave you in awe.
The film does unravel in its final act, bringing the science-fiction of time travel a little too close to the forefront and dropping the ball on a good deal of its emotional groundwork. What seemed to be substantial building blocks do not pay off in the way we might, as scholars of animated family cinema, have anticipated, leaving the movie with an unfinished feeling.
But all in all, it's a bright, compassionate, reasonably educational, and occasionally funny if not altogether worthy tribute to an old favorite. And since we don't have our own WABAC machine to return to a time of regularly scheduled Peabody and Sherman cartoons, this will do okay for now.
If nothing else, it's worth your time for the puns.
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The home where Charles Dickens wrote classics such as Great Expectations and A Tale of Two Cities is set to open to the public for the first time. The property in Kent, England, where the wordsmith lived until his death in 1870, has been used as a school since the 1920s but will now be a visitor attraction.
We aren't likely to see another movie come out this year that will stir up as much excitement as Man of Steel. As pumped as fans might be for Brad Pitt's forthcoming zombie epic World war z, the second chapter of Peter Jackson's The Hobbit trilogy, or Katniss' next go at survival in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Superman reigns supreme among fanboys worldwide. And it is this passion that not only results in devoted attention to and conversation about the new film, now in theaters, but also tons of half-cocked creative exploits and harebrained theories — you know, the fun stuff. The stuff that even the top bananas on the Man of Steel set love. Producer Charles Roven, for instance, is totally on board with all of the trailer mash-ups and off-the-wall predictions we can muster.
Responsible not only for Warner Bros' latest Clark Kent feature but also each of Christopher Nolan's Batman films, Roven is no stranger to an adamant fan base. And while some filmmakers might grow weary of the rumor mill that inevitably engulfs movies like these, Roven champions the passion. "I love the interest. Because of the interest, you have these fans who really make the film this big, huge cultural phenomenon," Roven tells Hollywood.com. "You need fans like that. You need fans who hang on all this stuff. I'm happy that they take our trailers and make their own. I love the fans."
But this doesn't mean that Roven is participating in every Internet conversation about the comic book characters, like Batman and Lex Luthor, suspected of making appearances in Man of Steel. "Quite frankly, if you responded to every rumor, you'd be non-stop responding. The one thing we didn't want to do, we didn't want the rumors to influence what we were doing. So we responded to none." Roven also considers this closed-mouth approach a service to the fans. "I want them to be happy. But part of them being happy is them not knowing everything that's going to happen before they walk into the movie theater. That makes it easy, also, to not respond."
Despite his stoic attitude, it can't be easy for Roven to face the sea of fervor that surrounds Man of Steel. After the mixed reception of Bryan Singer's Superman Returns in 2006, Man of Steel has a pretty big weight on its shoulders: the recreation of Superman for the modern era. "My interpretation of Superman Returns ... is that it was really an homage to Superman: The Movie, the Dick Donner picture." Roven adds, "[Singer is] a really smart filmmaker ... But that did leave the door open to reimagining the character, which we felt that the character needed. And that's how we approached the movie. We talked about it amongst ourselves, and said that if we were going to do this, we'd just need to play it like there's never been another Superman movie. Even though we were all raised on Dick Donner, and love the Dick Donner movie."
According to the producer, the Superman of today needs to serve a different purpose than that of eras past. "The '50s were a rather calm period in the world. Things were really black and white, and relatively simple. So the character Superman could be that and still be relatable," Roven says.
He continues on this theme: "Things are more complicated [today]. So you have to have a character, if he's going to be relatable to the broad range that you want, he has to not necessarily have everything clear cut for him. He needs to get there. He needs to have choices that he has to make. He needs to have emotional ground that he has to cover. At least that's what we felt."
Those unsure of how Superman's evolution will translate have looked to Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy, which revamped Batman for sophisticated modern audiences. But Roven promises there will be a distinction between his Bruce Wayne movies and what we'll see with Clark Kent. "We tried to make sure that we didn't take the character in the Bruce Wayne dark direction. Because Bruce Wayne is completely different from a character standpoint," says Roven. "Even if you're talking about the comic genre, he's a completely different character." Roven continues, "With Bruce Wayne, Chris focused on having the character develop from that personal tragedy that happened in his life. Clark really didn't understand the personal tragedy that happened in his life. He was trying to figure out where he came from. That's also completely different."
"But still, being true to the character, we wanted his choices to be emanating from whatever life experience he had," Roven says. "It was only natural that he would want to know who he was. And go on a trip, soul searching to discover who he was, what his purpose was. And then we loved the fact that he had a very complex decision to make. Because who he was and what he needed to be were in conflict."
So to tally up all of Man of Steel's goals, as elucidated by Roven, we have: the illustration of this internal turmoil, the evolution of an iconic American character, and the preservation of all the passions inhabited by countless fans? No defecit of marks to hit. But with creative forces like the passionate, fan-loving producer, Batman mastermind Christopher Nolan, and comic aficionado director Zack Snyder, Superman might have that fighting chance in his newest go at the big screen.
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The Vampire Diaries spinoff The Originals — which will air on April 25 as a backdoor pilot — is almost here, and Hollywood.com has your first look into the dark, intense, drama-filled hour.
Written by TVD co-creator/executive producer Julie Plec, The Originals centers on the Original family of vampires, as Klaus (Joseph Morgan) returns to the supernatural melting pot that is the French Quarter of New Orleans — a town he helped build centuries ago — and is reunited with his diabolical former protégé Marcel (Charles Michael Davis). Naturally, chaos will ensue.
RELATED: Claire Holt Joins 'The Originals'
Check out a sneak peek of the episode in our gallery below to get the inside scoop about what's going down in the Big Easy:
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[Photo Credit: Skip Bolen/The CW]
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While the cast of Nashville didn't give acoustic performances of any of their original hit country songs (boo!), they did gather onstage together for a PaleyFest panel Saturday afternoon to tease some major relationship changes in the next few episodes (yay!). When the country-music show returns with all new episodes March 27, we'll finally get to see the outcome of Scarlett (Clare Bowen) and Gunnar's (Sam Palladio) grief-induced hookup.
"It’s getting freaky right now," Palladio says. "What a crazy situation to be in. They’re in a phase right that’s bringing them to a new level. Gunnar’s in a really traumatic place [after the death of his brother] and Scarlett is being that emotional bedrock for him. Bed rock, hey!"
All puns aside, Bowen tried to rationalize what made Scarlett finally take their relationship to the next level at such an inopportune time. "Grief makes people do very odd things," Bowen says. "The person you’re supposed to be with may not turn up at the most convenient, appropriate time. So you’ll have to wait and see what the aftermath is like."
And while Gunnar and Scarlett's relationship is being taken to new levels, the relationship at the core of Nashville is as complicated as ever. Rayna (Connie Britton) and Deacon (Charles Esten) have a long history, and things haven't gotten any easier with the announcement of Rayna's upcoming divorce and their heated elevator kiss. But Britton and Esten aren't optimistic that they can get a happily ever after. "She’s the one for me, but does that always work out, is that always the best?" Esten says. "That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to work out but we’re always trying."
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Britton agrees that their journey won't be an easy one. "It’s a very grown up relationship," Britton says. "We can go in so many different directions and we have. We can just rip each other apart in so many ways. But there’s always this foundation between the two of them."
While Britton and Esten couldn't reveal details about their relationship, we did get some scoop on what's coming up for Juliette (Hayden Panettiere) in the wake of her marriage annulment. "One marriage under my belt, a few 'carcasses,'" Panettiere says. "She’s mostly trying to rekindle the relationship with her mother and she loves to take two steps forward and one step back. Her life is a roller coaster."
But Panettiere did tease that someone new may be coming into Juliette's life. "A new character is going to come in and try to help this relationship, but whether or not that comes to fruition is questionable," Panettiere says. "Some clothes might come off in the meantime." She also revealed that one episode in particular will feature a lot of naked Juliette!
Interestingly enough, creator Callie Khouri also teased that the moment where Avery (Jonathon Jackson) bumps into Juliette (and tries to turn it into a pick up line) in the pilot might be a good foreshadowing of things to come. Could we possibly be seing an Avery/Juliette romance?
We'll find out when Nashville returns on Wednesday, March 27 at 10 PM ET/PT on ABC.
Follow Sydney on Twitter: @SydneyBucksbaum
[Photo Credit: Katherine Bomboy-Thorton/ABC]
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It's official: The entire surviving family of Original vampires will star in The Vampire Diaries spin-off series, The Originals. Claire Holt has just been cast as the fourth lead in the potential new series. She will reprise her TVD role Rebekah, the vampire sister of Elijah (Daniel Gillies) and Klaus (Joseph Morgan), as well as werewolf Haley (Phoebe Tonkin). These three Originals siblings are the only Originals left alive in present day.
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Written by TVD co-creator/executive producer Julie Plec, The Originals centers on the Original family of vampires, as Klaus returns to the supernatural melting pot that is the French Quarter of New Orleans — a town he helped build centuries ago — and is reunited with his diabolical former protégé Marcel (Charles Michael Davis). The backdoor pilot will air as an episode of TVD on April 25.
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Now that Holt is set for the spin-off, does that mean she's leaving TVD for good, along with the entire Original family? What does that mean for Stefan (Paul Wesley), who just recently resumed a relationship with her? And will Rebekah be a vampire on the spin-off series, or will the search for the cure for vampirism succeed on TVD, making her human? One thing is for sure: Things have suddenly become even more unsettled in Mystic Falls.
Follow Sydney on Twitter: @SydneyBucksbaum
[Photo Credit: Bob Mahoney/The CW]
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Friends Turned Lovers... Twice? The NBC comedy Go On is reuniting a couple of Friends when Courteney Cox guest stars on an episode of Matthew Perry's show. Cox will join Perry, her former onscreen husband Chandler Bing, for an episode airing in April. She will play a woman whom Anne (Julie White) tries to set up with Perry's Ryan. It marks the duo's first small-screen reunion since the Emmy-winning NBC comedy ended its 10-season run in 2004. [THR]
Malibu is Getting a Lot More Country: Blake Shelton will play Reba McEntire's brother on the ABC comedy Malibu Country. The Voice coach will appear in the Friday, March 1 episode. Back in October, McEntire said she was courting Shelton for a guest role. "I've already talked to Blake and Kelly [Clarkson] and they said ... that they would appear, so we just got to get the script right when we need 'em in here," she said. [Huffington Post]
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Vampire Diaries Spinoff Finds Its Big Bad: Charles Michael Davis has just been cast as the big villain Marcel in The Vampire Diaries spinoff, The Originals. Co-starring opposite Joseph Morgan, Daniel Gillies and Phoebe Tonkin, the potential spinoff will be introduced in the April 25 episode of the CW drama. Written by TVD co-creator/executive producer Julie Plec, the show centers on the Original family of vampires, as Klaus (Morgan) returns to the supernatural melting pot that is the French Quarter of New Orleans — a town he helped build centuries ago — and is reunited with his diabolical former protégé Marcel (Davis). Wicked, wild and charismatic, Marcel is a former kicked-around street rat who now calls the shots in the supernatural playground of New Orleans. As a modern-day vampire, he’s fierce and bold, able to accomplish as much with his charm as he is with his strength. Elijah (Gillies), intent on helping his self-destructive brother find redemption, must side with Marcel’s enemies in order to keep Klaus in line. [Deadline]
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Arrow's Throwing a Party! DJ and producer Steve Aoki will make a cameo appearance as himself in an upcoming episode of The CW’s hit action series Arrow. Airing Wednesday, March 20 at 8 PM ET/PT, the episode features the long-awaited opening of Oliver Queen’s Starling City nightclub. Since money is no object for a billionaire like Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell), he hires the world’s most in-demand DJ — Aoki — to play opening night at his new club. Tracks from Aoki’s recently released EP, It’s the End of the World As We Know It, will be included in the episode, in addition to tracks from affiliated artists on Aoki’s Dim Mak music label. [The CW]
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Game of Contracts: Game of Thrones creator George R.R. Martin just signed a two-year overall deal with HBO. Martin will continue as co-executive producer on GOT, whose Season 3 premieres March 31. Additionally, he will develop and produce new series projects for the network. [Deadline]
Extra Castle, It's What You Crave: ABC has just ordered an additional episode of Castle, making its season 5 a total of 24 episodes. The extra episode will air in April instead of a repeat. This is very good news for fans of the series who are waiting on an early Season 6 pickup. [EW]
[Photo Credit: Getty Images; WENN]
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Yes, everyone, Lady Sybil is still dead. Unlike Matthew's fickle paralysis and the waddle below the Dowager Countess' neck there is not going to be any changing that. And everyone continues to be so, so very sad now that she's gone. There were more pale faces on the show than in a consumption ward in a Charles Dickens novel. There were just as many jails too. God, can we just get Bates out of jail already? I continue to not care one lick about this storyline at all. I mean a vital young woman can have a baby and die in half an episode and they can't even figure out how to get one poor loser out of the clink in over four? Seriously!
Well, there were plenty of things to love and hate in this episode, so let's get right down to it, shall we?
Ethel Can't Cook: It's so sweet that Isobel gave Old Pro Ethel a job as her maid and I love that she's a terrible cook. Poor Isobel, always the Christian martyr can't admit to herself or others when she's made a terrible mistake. It's when that annoying friend of yours in college went vegan and the first time her birthday rolled around and she got a vegan cupcake and you watch the pained expression on her face as she tries to get that congealed sawdust with too much sugar down her gob. I love that face.
The Way Mrs. Hughes Says Ethel: I'm not quite sure how it's different but it's like the combination of a sneer and a vocal twirl. Like she wants to disparage her and herald her arrival at the same time. Mostly it's the drawn out "lllllll" at the end of her voice.
Edith's Seat at the Table: For whatever stupid antiquated reason Edith, my heroine in journalistic integrity, is not allowed to eat breakfast in bed because she's not married, but when all the men are sitting around at breakfast discussing the fate of Sybil's child, she's the only woman in the house with a voice in the discussions. Funny how my darling Edith is more powerful than ever.
William's Father Loves a Lady: Isn't it so nice that William, the footman who died in WW I and was so idiotic that he was obsessed with Daisy (and how many times did we have to hear her annoying Cockney say, "But Aye don't luv 'im!"), hooked his beloved blushing bride up with his father? Isn't it so nice that this working man has figured out that Downton and all the great houses are just waiting to be scrapped for bricks or turned into museums once PBS shows make them famous and fat Americans journey hours by plane and light rail to see them? Don't you love that he wants to leave his farm to a woman to run? Don't you love how modern he is? Don't you wish he'd be more modern with a woman we love and not, you know, stupid Daisy?
RELATED: 'Downton Abbey' Recap: Shocking Death Shocks Everyone
The Luck of the Irish: Of course Branson, like a good Irish man, only wants to farm sheep on his little farm that Matthew offers to give him. (And seriously, Branson, for the good of future seasons and your muscles stretching out undershirts and work shirts and filling out a pair of overalls, you should really take the damn farm.) Have you ever been to Ireland? The only think you'll see more of than green, rain, and drunk driving PSAs are freaking sheep. There are no real crops, other than potatoes, shamrocks, and some sort of grain that they use to make the most delicous brown bread in the entire world. (Note to my Irish readers: If you send me a loaf of brown bread, I will drive all the snakes out of your country.) And then, as if to make himself sound even more Irish, he says that he's just going to get a cousin of his to help him take care of his daughter. If there is one thing that the Irish have more than sheep it's layabout cousins.
The Lord of Nothing: Oh god, how awful is Lord Grantham this season? He's just so awful and old fashioned and no one is listening to him and everything he says is just stupid and wrong-headed and gets Mary's panties in a wad more than Edith spitting in her split pea soup. Cora won't forgive him for what he did to Sybil, he won't relinquish any control of the estate to Matthew even though he realizes he's the fool who put them in this position in the first place, and he has a total conniption when Branson says he wants his daughter to be Catholic. I know it's hard to change, but he needs an attitude adjustment like Jimmy Kent needs a lesson on how to wind the clocks. The one good part came when he accused Mary of being against him and (that spoiled brat) Mary says "I"m never against you, but you've lost on this one." It's not that she's against him it's that she, and everyone else, it seems, is against everything he believes in. If he's going to keep behaving like this, I'm glad everyone is treating him like crap.
No One Cares About Ethel: The only two people who care that Ethel was a whore are Carson and Lord Grantham and all the other women and whatnot are like, "Whatever, she sold it and now she's getting her life together. That's no crime. But you should taste her Salmon Mousse. They should lock her away with Bates for serving that." It's probably just that Carson and Our Lord are the only two that have hired hookers in the past so they're feeling some sort of projected guilt.
Violet's Quip of the Week: "She has an appropriate costume for every activity"
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Branson's Attire: This was the guy who refused to wear anything but his ratty tweed suit to his sister-in-law (and former employer's) wedding and now he's wearing some fancy mourning jacket (not to be confused with a morning jacket or My Morning Jacket) without any sort of fuss. Come on now. That's just crazy.
Ethel Gets Help: Mrs. Pattmore, I expected more of you. I know you're a nice lady, but should you really go down there helping Ethel to learn how to cook? No, you should not. You should be at home in your kitchen shoving Daisy's hands on one of the burners.
Salmon Mousse: Who would ever want to eat something called Salmon Mousse?! It sounds like that pink slime that fast food restaurants make hamburgers out of that caused a national scandal recently.
Lady Mary's Gossip: How is it that Lady Mary always knows some key bit of information that she deploys at just the right moment and things always go her way. She finds out about Lavinia's letter so that Matthew gives all her money to save Downton. She finds out Sybil wanted her daughter to be Catholic and then tells everyone about that. I don't know about you, but if I was in that Crawley family I would begin to get suspicious of Mary's well-timed pronouncements, wouldn't you?
Chef Edith: Don't make Edith learn how to cook. That's just cruel for the poor girl.
Jimmy's Gay Panic: I don't know that I like where this Jimmy and Thomas storyline is going. I love that O'Brien is clamly instigating Thomas' demise because of what he did to (her son?) Alfred, because I am a bitch and I think plotting like that is fun to watch. However, as an American homosexual, I don't enjoy that Jimmy is getting all creeped out whenever Thomas touches him. I also don't like that Thomas is being so handsy with this young man when he's shown no indication that he wants to be touched. This is going to end either one of two ways. Either we're going to find out that Jimmy, like Thomas, is gay and the reason he's so uncomfortable is because he's working out some issues of his own or, like O'Brien hopes, Thomas is going to go too far and Jimmy is going to bludgeon Thomas to death with a poker. I hope it's the former and not the latter. And if it is the latter, can we forget about him to rot in jail so that it's not all dragged out and awful like the whole Bates storyline?
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Bates' Lost Statement: Speaking of the awful Bates storyline, I said I wasn't going to talk about it anymore because it bores me so much, but I have to bring it up for a second to talk about a pattern of behavior on the show that I absolutely loathe. Mr. Murray, the lawyer, goes to see that mean old lady who saw the dead Mrs. Bates baking a pie and somehow proves that Bates is innocent (we don't care how just so that this will stop). We see Mr. Murray go to talk to her and she is especially uncooperative. Then we see him come to Anna and say, "I got her to make a statement. Bates will be freed." Say what? How did you do it? How did she change her mind? When is this going to happen? Why can't you show us! Yes, this is a television show. On a television show we all watch things. Do you know what someone telling you about something that happened is? It is not watching, it is hearing. Do you know where you hear things? On the radio. We aren't listening to the radio. It's time that Downton starts with more showing and less telling. They had the same problem when Mary was like, "Matthew, I opened your secret letter and I read it," and we never got to see it. That is ridiculous. Save all these stupid things for the audiobook. In the meantime, why not show us the key events that drive along the plot, no matter how ludicrous or tedious those plots may be.
Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan
[Photo Credit: Masterpiece]
If you were holding out hope that The LA Complex was going to get a last-minute save from The CW, sorry to disappoint: the network has decided against ordering a third season of the Canadian drama.
A spokesperson for The CW announced the official cancelation on Thursday of the steamy soap about Canadians chasing the Hollywood dream in Los Angeles. This decision comes as expected – though still disappointing – after Canada’s MuchMusic channel decided weeks ago not to order a third season.
Fans of the soapy drama had hoped that indie producer Epitome Pictures would be able to keep The LA Complex afloat, but losing its key North American distributors might be the final straw that breaks the Canadian series’ back. To be fair, the show had little chance of surviving after debuting as TV’s lowest-rated drama premiere of all time back in April.
Executive produced by Stephen Stohn and Linda Schuyler of Epitome Pictures, The LA Complex was centered around a Melrose Place-like apartment building, filled to bursting with entertainment industry hopefuls. The series tackled heavy subjects, like self-mutilation, alcoholism, homosexuality in the rap industry, a dancer’s foray into the porn industry, a Church of Scientology-like religious cult, and even murder. Unfortunately, even the flashiest of cliffhangers and OMG moments couldn’t attract a large enough audience to make The LA Complex a success ratings-wise.
The LA Complex starred Cassie Steele (Degrassi), Jonathan Patrick Moore (ABC Family’s The Mistle-Tones), Andra Fuller, Joe Dinicol (Disney Channel’s My Babysitter’s a Vampire), Georgina Reilly, Jewel Staite (Firefly), Chelan Simmons, and Benjamin Charles Watson.
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[Photo Credit: Stephen Scott/The CW]
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Gossip Girl is known for the many schemes, hoaxes, and scandals that pepper every single episode. But the other important component that makes this show what it is? The fashion. And no one on the Upper East Side is more fashionable than Charles Bartholomew “Chuck” Bass.
Over the last six seasons of Gossip Girl, we’ve seen Chuck wear some pretty out-there fashions, taking some daring risks when it comes to colors and prints, and watched him make even the most casual of days a walk down the runway. From his high school days as a preppy stoner to now, when you can't catch him in anything but a suave suit, his fashion sense has matured along with his character.
When we say goodbye to Gossip Girl once and for all tonight when the two-hour series finale airs, we will get our last glimpse of Chuck’s weirdly awesome style, and his most fashionable look as he finally heads to the altar with longtime love, Blair. Before that happens, take a trip down memory lane and check out all the crazy fashions of Chuck Bass!
THE CRAZY FASHIONS OF CHUCK BASS!
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[Photo Credit: The CW]
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Filmmaker Charles Kent was among Vitagraph's first directors. He primarily made films adapted from literature and occasionally starred in them. He was the first to employ creative close-ups and this caused him to suffer considerable criticism. When not making and acting in his own films, Kent frequently appeared in other films. After 1913, he became a full-time actor.