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Freshly limbered up from the world's most elaborate pre-workout stretching routine, it looks like Jean-Claude Van Damme is ready for some movie making, and his newest flick, Welcome to the Jungle, shows the actor wanting to show of his comedy moves along with his trademark martial arts kicks.
In the comedy, an entire company of office drones, including the likes of Children's Hospital's Rob Huebel, the distinctly voiced Kristen Schaal, and Dennis Haysbert are sent on a mandatory leadership retreat headed by Van Damme. Things go all Lord of the Flies really fast after the group's only pilot dies in the jungle, eliminating their only means of escape. Soon, separate tribes are formed, sticks are sharpened, and easy-fit khakis are turned into jungle-ready leotards.
This has certainly been the year of the survival film, and while films like Gravity and All Is Lost ponder the serious emotional implications of surviving a harrowing near death experience, Welcome to the Jungle settles with jokes about cannibalism and tigers... and maybe that's not such bad thing after watching so many depressing movies about this sort of thing all year long.
Tlc star Rozonda 'Chilli' Thomas has become the latest celebrity to strip for animal rights group Peta. The Grammy Award-winning singer has bared all to raise awareness about the abuse of tigers in circuses.
Photographed crouched inside a cage and wearing nothing but striped bodypaint, Chilli is urging fans to 'Boycott the Circus' in the ad.
PETA officials have learned that many big cats used by circuses are beaten into submission, and when they're not performing, they are locked away in cramped, filthy cages.
Tiger lover Chilli says, "There's so much cruelty behind the scenes, which is a something that a lot of people don't get to see. They're (circus trainers) being mean to them to make them do this trick... and I think that everybody needs to be aware of what's really going on."
Asked why she decided to strip off for the provocative new campaign, the Waterfalls singer adds, "If you can raise awareness to something that's important, such as this, then you should. I know for a fact that I would never want to be in a cage."
She joins a growing list of celebrities, including Alec Baldwin, Jada Pinkett Smith, Olivia Munn and Edie Falco, who have teamed up with PETA to speak out against circuses that use animals.
Where we left off: The Langley crew set up a plan to draw the bomber out of hiding, Quinn shot Carrie to stop her from blowing their cover, and Saul took a trip down South to say hello to Brody.
"One Last Time" In this week's episode, Brody hogs all of the camera time with his withdrawal symptoms, while Carrie stands idly by, presumably waiting for the perfect moment to tell him that she’s pregnant with their maybe child. (Unfortunately, she never does tell Brody that little gem of information, even though the Downton Abbey lover in me kept on shouting at the TV: "Carrie, tell him he's probably the father of your unborn child. Do it, Carrie!" Oh well, I’m crossing my fingers for the next episode.)
After bringing Brody back to the states in a deathly state of health, Saul somehow manages to convince Carrie that the best scenario for everyone is for her to get Brody to once again be a double agent. Saul's dream plan to change the Middle East forever — nice, casual plan, Saul — is for Brody to head back to Iran, assassinate the head of the Revolutionary Guard (which will allow Javadi to move up the chain of command), and then get his U.S. Marine-al Qaeda ass the hell out of there. Because Carrie is just as crazy as Saul (and Homeland's writers), she agrees to the plan. Although she's probably only doing it so she can reach out to Brody in the hope that her gentle touch will evoke months of memories of passion, terror, and insanity — what every man wants while they’re going through withdrawal after months of being caged up in Venezuela.
While I was hoping that the return of Brody would help bring Homeland back to its roots, all it did was flop. Stacked up against last week's episode of espionage, shootings, and turning higher-ups in the Iranian government, the focus on Brody was barely entertaining, and, at some points, completely annoying. He spends over half the episode hitting his head and scratching his arms while he's going through withdrawal, and it gets boring after approximately five minutes. Additionally, Homeland seems to have not-so-successfully crammed four episodes worth of plot progression into one 60-minute chunk. At this point, we're all well aware that Saul is on a tight time schedule to advance his CIA agenda before he's ousted from the agency, but having Brody be re-turned in one episode is just too rushed. We need time to readjust to his return, and to his crazy eyes. (Also, using Brody as an agent in Iran seems like the dumbest idea ever. Saul might be losing it.) Hopefully, next episode will be a tad more realistic, a pinch less rushed, and totally filled to the brim with baby talk. Carrie, give us a ring when your baby registry is all set up.
When Carrie Should Tell Brody She's Pregnant: - While he's propelling into Iran.- While he's being questioned about his loyalty.- When he's just about to shoot the head of the Revolutionary Guard.- While he's sleeping so he can’t really hear her.- When he (maybe) comes back to the U.S. (Hopefully as soon as he gets off of the plane.)
Highlight of the Episode: Mira's lover is in cahoots with Senator Lockhart and Saul calls Lockhart out on it so he can use the information as leverage and get a few more weeks of being director of the CIA. The only move that could have made the scene better was if Saul had karate-chopped Lockhart in the face like he did to Javadi.
Upset of the Episode: Dana reappeared as a motel maid. But on the positive side, she told daddy dearest that she never wants to see him again. Although we all know that angsty Dana doesn’t really mean that.
Miley Cyrus and former basketball star Dennis Rodman have been named two of the Least Influential Celebrities of 2013 by America's GQ magazine. Editors at the U.S publication have compiled a list of the 25 stars who they believe are uninspiring to the general public, noting that this year "has been a bad year for impotent megalomaniacs."
In the shameful number one spot on the list is the ex-basketball player, who has garnered attention for his controversial friendship with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Editors call Rodman a "Q-list celebrity willing to commit borderline treason just to hang out with a dictator who himself aspires to be a Q-list celebrity."
Embattled U.S. chef Paula Deen comes in at number two following her racial slur controversy this summer (13), and American politician Anthony Weiner rounds out the top three thanks to his 'sexting' scandal.
Meanwhile, pop star Cyrus, who turned 21 years old on Saturday (23Nov13), ranks sixth on the list for her provocative and racy performances over the past few months.
The magazine states, "Miley spent the entire year foam-finger-blasting herself, licking sledgehammers, and basically trying every inane strategy she could think of to rile up America's few remaining pearl clutchers. What's sad is that it totally worked."
Also making the list are Will Smith and his family, Justin Bieber, Ryan Reynolds and U.S. President Barack Obama at number 17.
BBC bosses have scored a mention in the Guinness World Record books after Doctor Who fans in almost 100 countries tuned in for the 50th anniversary special this weekend (23-24Nov13). The highly-anticipated episode, in which current Time Lord Matt Smith united onscreen with previous Doctors David Tennant and Tom Baker, and former star Billie Piper, was broadcast in the U.K. on Saturday night (23Nov13), attracting more than 10 million viewers alone.
It was simultaneously aired in 94 countries around the world so fans could all follow the story 'live', and millions more are estimated to have tuned in.
The one-off anniversary episode, titled The Day of the Doctors, also featured veteran actor John Hurt, and producers thrilled fans by including the Doctor's iconic enemies the Daleks and the Zygons.
It was screened at more than 1,500 cinemas and on TV networks around the world, earning the event the Guinness World Record for "the world's largest ever simulcast of a TV drama".
Doctor Who stars Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman thrilled fans of the sci-fi show by making a special appearance at a convention in London on Friday (22Nov13) to kick off a weekend of 50th anniversary celebrations. The outgoing Time Lord and his companion headed to London's ExCel centre to launch the 50th anniversary event, which runs until Sunday (24Nov13), and they met fans from all over the world who had travelled to the British capital for the convention.
Smith told reporters at the event, "We're very proud, it's a great privilege to be here. It's a great privileged to be the incumbent Time Lord... It's great fun and it's great fun for the fans."
Coleman adds, "We've got such an international crowd here... From Turkey, France, Brazil, Mexico, and meeting all these people who have travelled all this way just to be here for this weekend to say, 'Happy birthday', it's great."
Smith will bow out of the role in a special 50th anniversary episode of the popular show, which will air simultaneously in countries around the world on Saturday night (23Nov13), and he adds of his final appearance, "It's a celebration and we hope everyone is going to enjoy it."
Late music legend Lou Reed will be remembered at a tribute show in New York City on Sunday (24Nov13). The concert, which will be held at Manhattan's Bowery Electric, will feature members of The Vaccines, Patti Smith Band guitarist Lenny Kaye, Reed's former collaborator Shahzad Ismaily and rockers Hollis Brown, who will perform the Velvet Undergound's 1970 record Loaded in its entirety.
Proceeds from the gig, titled Last Great American Whale: A Concert in Memory of Lou Reed, will go to the Ali Forney Center, a charity which helps the homeless.
Reed died last month (Oct13) at the age of 71.
Newly-single teen model and aspiring singer Courtney Stodden appears to have moved on from her failed marriage to actor Doug Hutchison after she was photographed getting up close and personal with Anna Nicole Smith's ex-boyfriend Edward Lozzi at a party in Los Angeles on Thursday night (21Nov13). The busty blonde, 19, was snapped dancing with the 53-year-old former White House aide weeks after confirming her split from Lost star Hutchison, who is also 53.
DC Comics / Splash News
Ben Affleck is sure having a love affair with the comic books these days. After taking the role as the caped crusader in the upcoming Batman/Superman film, the actor/director is teaming up with his old buddy Matt Damon to bring another comic series to the big screen. The dynamic duo is producing a film version of Ed Brubraker’s comic book Sleeper. A couple of television writers, Shawn Ryan and David Wiener (from The Shield and The Killing respectively) will pen the screenplay.
Sleeper follows a secret operative who losses his sense of pain and gains a Wolverine-esque healing factor from an alien artifact that allows him to bounce back after otherwise grave injuries. He can also pass his powers on to other people.
However, it seems that Affleck will too busy backing this picture and zip-lining through Gotham to make time for other things, including a remake of the critically-acclaimed French thriller Tell No One. Affleck dropped his directorial position on the remake all the way back in August, but that project has just now found a new helmer in the form of Warrior director Gavin O'Connor. Tell No One's dense and layered thrills would have benefited from Affleck's deft directoral hand; it's doubly a shame that Affleck couldn't find the time for the film since it would have reunited him with Argo screenwriter Chris Terrio. But hopefully Terrio and O'Connor can do the film's remake justice.
Nineties fashion icon, home wrecker, Robert Rodriguez's muse and overall badass, Rose McGowan was ultimate bad girl of every cult film, horror movie and strangely enough, WB sitcom. Before Dita Von Tease slapped on her first pastie, McGowan was strutting along the MTV VMA Awards' red carpet wearing nothing but a chain link fence. She was the antithesis of Drew Barrymore's flower power vibes and we loved her for it. When the news of a Charmed reboot went around (in which McGowan starred as one of the witchy sisters) McGowan's response was " lame lame lame lamertons," further proving once more her refreshing attitude towards Hollywood. Despite her recent "facial transformations," this Charmed-inspired nostalgia had us thinking about McGowan's unusual body of work and what's she up to these days — besides getting married and showing up in a cape.
The Doom Generation (1995)
As part of the teen apocalypse trilogy from queer film auteur Gregg Araki, we first see the dark appeal of McGowan. Here she is playing a teenage speed freak on a road trip filled with violence, threesomes and one killer bob. It's a look that came to define her, giving Uma Thurman a run for her money.
McGowan traded in her pin-up dark locks to play a ditsy blonde named Tatum. While she doesn't get much screen time in the film, neither do most of the victims, and at least her death scene was memorable, making us terrified of garage doors for at least another ten years.
Devil In The Flesh (1998)
The nineties seemed to have a glut of movies and straight to tape releases about evil, young women whose seduction attempts ruin the lives of others and Devil in the Flesh is no exception. Not even her Christian fundamentalist grandma can stop McGowan's lusty attempts to get her high school English teacher into bed. This movie got a lot of airplay on late-night cable networks and sleepovers filled with impressionable young girls.
This dark comedy featured the role Rose was born to play and also starred the perpetual chick flick sidekick, Judy Greer. In the days of pre-bullying campaigns, the most popular clique in high school accidently offs the prom queen with a jawbreaker candy. Filled with satire, sweater sets and a sweet soundtrack, it was some of Rose's best work.
To be honest, we were initially skeptical when they killed off Prue (spoiler alert!) played by Shannen Doherty and brought McGowan in to play the long-lost sister, Paige, in season 3. But while her fellow witchy sisters were being overly dramatic about boys, Paige got to do her own thing and bring the fun back into the show. As the longest running hour-long television series featuring all female leads, Charmed is practicaly a feminist milestone in television. (Sidenote: Daryl from Walking Dead was on Charmed?)
Planet Terror (2007)
Serial teen dramas always seemed an odd fit for McGowan. It was B-movie territory with plenty of camp like the double feature, Grindhouse, where she truly thrived. An homage to the exploitation films of the '70s made by Roger Corman, McGowan appeared in both Death Proof and Planet Terror, but it was in Robert Rodriguez's zombie romp where she left the strongest impression — playing a stripper named Cherry who hunts down zombies with a machine gun for a leg. This lady knows how to pick her parts.