Wednesday, February 10, 2016

One for the Soldiers

Before she makes us laugh with Jennifer Lawrence and Goldie Hawn, Amy Schumer is going to take a turn to the serious. Er.

I mean, her comedy is serious. I dunno why people have to belittle her day job (just a tad...think about it) to say the woman’s doing a drama.

Which she is.

The Emmy winner is going to co-star in Thank You for Your Service, a Miles Teller-led new film from American Sniper screenwriter Jason Hall, who will be popping his cherry as a director with the project.

The plot will revolve around a group of U.S. soldiers coming home from Iraq, who struggle to reintegrate back into their regular civilian lives and with the memories of war.

Thank You for Your Service will be based on the 2013 David Finkel novel, and co-star It up-and-comer Haley Bennett, Secret In Their Eyes’ Joe Cole, The Last Saint’s Beulah Koale, Child of God’s Scott Haze, and Oscar nominee Keisha Casthle-Hughes (HBO’s Game of Thrones), among others.


A Buff Cavill Makes for a Happy World

The media blitz for the upcoming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice has begun, and it is so obvious.

Ergo the gratuitous shots of a shirtless Henry Cavill. You know, the Man of Steel, who has never looked the part more.

Cavill himself did his part by Instagramming the pic at right, as a sort of self-motivational tool to keep working out so all the fans can be happy when he suits up for the 147 other DC Comicsverse movies he still has coming down the pike.

So generous.

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is due out on March 25.

Photo: E! Online.

Time to Bounce, Biggity Bounce, Kids

#ICYMI (and how could you?), Missy Elliott debuted a new single titled Pep Rally” like a boss during one of the Super Bowl 50 commercials, which wasn’t even like, about her (the Amazon Echo one), because that’s.


She do.

Get it, girl!


Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Fast, Furious...and Theron?

Ooh, child. I luh this bit o potential casting news.

They want the villain in Fast and Furious 8 to be a woman – and they want that woman to be Charlize Theron.

Which has me kinda like, Yeah!, and sorta like, Don’t. Because Furiosa.

But, I mean, La Theron would – and slay with me he’ – bring it to the franchise.

Fully on.

F. Gary Gray, who directed The Italian Job, is set to helm, so figure that one out. Haha.

Oh yeah. Fast and Furious 8 is totally a thing. And so are the ninth and the 10th blockbuster that suddenly auteur Vin Diesel wants to make to complete the bestest series in film ever.

A tenthlogy? A decalogy. What?

So confused right now.


When Ewan Did Bowie (Again)

Back in the 2000s, Baz Luhrmann delivered the kinetic Moulin Rouge!, and one of its stars became a heartthrob of a rock star in my eyes.

That was Ewan McGregor, who won over the courtesan Satine (portrayed in an Academy Award-nominated turn by Nicole Kidman) as the penniless writer Christian, who, in turn, won us over by romantically singing his little longing heart out to the tune of Elton John, the Police, and David Bowie, among others.

The film’s show-stopping “Elephant Love Medley” included a tremendous, memorable take on the late Bowie’s Heroes,” which the Jane Got a Gun star reprised last night at the Roxy in West Hollywood at a tribute to Bowie. And, of course, it looks and sounds like McGregor  who also showcased his singing ability in the underappreciated 2003 title Down with Love  did the Thin White Duke proud.

Check it:


Life Builder

Good thing Matt LeBlanc dide make it to that so-called Friends reunion.

The Emmy-nominated and Golden Globe-winning actor is looking to come back to network TV, via CBS, once his Episodes on Showtime end, with legendary director James Burrows helming the pilot for his potential network comeback vehicle, which is sure to be ordered any day day now.

Titled I’m Not Your Friend (ha!), the show was written by a couple of That ’70s Show alumni, and would see LeBlanc as a contractor who learns that raising his kids ain’t as easy as he thought (see, his wife has decided to go back to work).

This could so work. America loves its old Friends.


Magdalene’s Turn

Here she comes!


Mary Magdalene, that’s who.

Academy Award nominee Rooney Mara (Carol) is circling an M2 biopic that is currently coming together with director Garth Davis (Sundance Channel’s Top of the Lake) at the helm and The Weinstein Company on board., y’all.

The project will take an authentic and humanistic approaching in telling the story of one of the most enigmatic (and polarizing) figures of Christianity.

Davis reportedly is keen on Mara taking the part given her “raw, brave approach to performances [and] her deeply magnetic inner life.

In other words, girlfriend has that air of mystery that the role will require.


The New Goldie Era

Goldie Hawn is back, y’all.

The Oscar-winning actress with The Smile already has a Divanation, a First Wives Club reunion of sorts also featuring Diane Keaton and Better Midler in the works at Netflix, and now comes word that she is also eyeing a part in a new Amy Schumer-led big-screen project to be helmed by Jonathan Levine (The Night Before).

The movie will revolve around a mother-daughter duo that gets caught up in a crime during a vacation gone wrong.

This has to happen. Like, it just has to now.


Monday, February 08, 2016

The Right Frequency

It’s from TV’s Nashville to communicating across time and space for Riley Smith.

The actor has been cast on The CW’s upcoming reboot of Frequency, the 2000 Jim Caviezel vehicle. He will play Frank Sullivan, the character that Dennis Quaid portrayed in the movie.

In a twist, the show will not see him communicating with a son but with a daughter (how progressive). Smith’s character’s daughter, a police detective, living in the now will discover that she can reach her estranged father, also a detective, who died in 1996 – during a period of deep undercover, which is why he was never around before he kicked the bucket.

Can someone from the now talk to the someones from the past to make them forget about the concepts of remaking or rebooting s---, please!


Coldplay & Co. Slay Super Bowl 50

Well that was a genius Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show.

Brought on to help celebrate the 50th edition of the big game, Coldplay may have initially seemed like an odd choice for such a piece of Americana entertainment, but the British band proved once and for all that they are, indeed, so universally well-liked (and ragged on because haters are gon’ hate) because they are quite simply that good. There isn’t an arena, nay, a stadium on the planet that those Chris Martin-fronted Brits cannot rock, and Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., on the day it would have the most eyes on it ever, was not going to be the exception. Just like it won’t be in September when Coldplay rolls back into town on its A Head Full of Dreams Tour.

What Coldplay & Co. – including the National Football League and the band’s special guests, Bruno Mars (with Mark Ronson) and Beyoncé, not to mention Lady GaGa early on  delivered yesterday was a master lesson in brand rebranding. Marketing at its very bestest.

Coldplay are (now) fun! And the world’s harbinger-of-a-very-special-message band (more on that later).

Bruno Mars is your next King of Pop  unless President of Pop Justin Timberlake decides he still wants the title, in which case I give JT six months to make a new move. I would live happy seeing those two challenge each other for life, btw.

Beyoncé’s the new and improved Madonna, near-flawless art as matter of fact (because when you Yoncé, you don’t need to peacock like Kanye), while the NFL is an American institution dead-set on showing that it cares by allowing its acts du year to move many conversations forward (again, more on that later).

Oh, and Lady GaGa is now Céline Dion.

Headliners Martin, lead guitarist Jonny Buckland, bassist Guy Berryman, and drummer Will Champion acknowledged the bull before em and took it by the horns, alright, sticking to their Coldplay guns by staying true to themselves and singing the songs that made them Coldplay in the first place. They reminded everyone, albeit momentarily, of the reasons why their music is so effective, and they did so by simultaneously displaying a lot of generosity toward their peers and their audience.

See, Coldplay is often mocked by the tug-at-your-heartstrings-ness and Gwyneth-ness of “Fix You,” a song believed to have been written for Martin’s now ex-wife, Gwyneth Paltrow, in the wake of her father’s death early into his relationship with the actress-turned-GOOPer, and by the, I dunno, earnestness of their true-introduction-to-world-domination single “Yellow,” a ditty that’s almost 16 years old. On paper, the Coldplays have no right being as big as they are, but, much like Adele, they connect with folks in ways folks sometimes folks don’t even want to accept, much less own, and their shows are pretty f---in’ magical. They make fans outta non-fans.

It’s really hard to resist Coldplay, and it’s comical to see people try.

“Viva La Vida,” a massive-hit anthem performed during the Halftime Show, is the encapsulation of Coldplay, a band who has expertly combined Olympics-quality pageantry with beautiful, effective songwriting forever. “Viva La Vida” is an honest offering, and much derided. And yet, it was a spectacular way in which to kick off things yesterday, especially because, as Martin put it, “We’re in this together. Let’s go!

That included the game’s eventual winners, the Broncos, as well as the Panthers, the thousands gathered at Levis Stadium, those millions of us watching at home...and Beyoncé and Bruno Mars.

Both previous halftime headliners came back to the Super Bowl turf as special guests and helped the NFL and Coldplay celebrate the annual tradition’s past, present, and future. Mars went first, capping a winning year by serving an electric performance of his and Mark Ronson’s huge, Grammy-nominated “Uptown Funk.” His charismatic, unreal dance moves were the thing dreams are made of, and prove that he has a right to the throne the late Michael Jackson once occupied.

And then there was Queen B.

As she showed us once before, Beyoncé is the real deal. An artist and a badass bitch through and through. An amazing example of womanhood, blackhood, and feminism, all wrapped up into a vessel-like artiste that has learned from the best (M) and will progressively continue to set the bar higher and move the conversations we need to be having forward through the sheer power of art. Through her own sheer power. She gives what we need while giving what we want, all the while letting her message speak for itself and for herself (because we may crave Beyoncé, but we don’t need or get to have all of Beyoncé, ergo the rare public appearances and via-email-only interviews).

That she performed her then-surprise new single Formation (Dirty),” a song barely 24 hours old, should come as zero a surprise. Gf didn’t to just play. She can to slay (pardon the clichéd use of her latest chanson de guerre). Beyoncé is a disciplined student of the School of Queen of Pop Madonna; her savvy is incredible, so, of course, she would trot out “Formation (Dirty).” The world already knew it; it was beyond-familiar with its commentaries on identity and current sociopolitical matters. Also not a surprise? That she would announce a new tour immediately following the Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show.

Do not insult or, worse, discount Beyoncé’s intelligence ever again, world. And remember, she doesn’t want to be Queen of Pop. Bitch she’s Beyoncé!

Which brings me back to Coldplay.

Everything came back full circle for the band after it gracefully relinquished the spotlight to two other acts because those guys knew people would love it. And those guys, they’re not going to withhold from their fans. Their move to share was smart, and it proved that you can be a person who enjoys many things. You can love many things. You can believe in love. Which means you can peace.

Yes, even peace got a rebrand (thanks, #BelieveInLove!).

Coldplay was brought on, by the NFL, to help celebrate the 50th edition of its big football game. They shared the spotlight with two true individuals who each had something important to say (they, too, are the face of America...they like to have unapologetic fun and form meaningful opinions on the state of the nation – deal with it because it’s a good thing, and it’s a very good and American thing that it’s happening; and you could say that Coldplay, Brits that they are making their way stateside, represented the face of immigration).

Everybody won (alright, maybe, not the Panthers).


Update: Since the show celebrated past performers with two big returns and some clips, what gives? Why was Madonna not shown on TV?

I am pretty sure it has nothing to do with anything other than she probably was shown at the stadium, just not on the televised show. Some cutaway more than likely cut away from her and others.

Oh. What. Do you think it has something to do with the beef M supposedly has with...Gwyneth Paltrow? That G.P. put the kibosh on showing M, telling her consciously uncoupled ex and her BFF Beyoncé to diss the Queen?


It would not be on brand.

Sunday, February 07, 2016

The Good Wife Wraps It Up

Forget all the other Super Bowl 50 commercials. There was one that was perfectly suspenseful and a total surprise.

I’m talking about the ad for TV’s The Good Wife...and its final nine episodes!

I know, right!

CBS confirmed tonight that the end of Alicia Florrick’s (Emmy winner Julianna Margulies) story is nigh. Quite nigh:

The Good Wife will wrap it on May 8.

And I can and can’t deal right now.

Has this show been about loneliness and isolation all along – the loneliness and isolation of a humiliated-by-her-politician husband (hey, Chris Noth, hey)? Will this end with Alicia’s death (perhaps, by her own hand, given what happened on the last ep we got)? Or has all of this taken place in her head as she mustered the will to go up to that first podium and pledged her Good Wife-ness to her beloved scoundrel?

Or, as someone quite smart and handsome put it to me, Robert and Michelle King, the show’s masterminds, are going to give us the ending we all want: Alicia, happily married to Will (Josh Charles), daydreaming about a major what-if situation while watching a Peter Florrick-for-POTUS commercial on TV?

What if is and has been a recurring theme on The Good Wife, and the show has flirted with the absurdly surreal and memory recollections before, especially during recent seasons.

In that scenario, Archie Panjabi’s Kalinda and Alicia are neighbors even – Margulies and Panjabi simply have been playing a very long tabloid-friendly con.

Update: Speaking of Josh Charles, check out what he had to tweet about the surprise announcement.

Rose’s Little Flower Dude

Congratulations go out to gorgeaussie Rose Byrne and her Emmy-winning love, Bobby Cannavale (HBO’s Vinyl).

The longterm couple welcomed their first son together last week.

Cannavale made the news legit on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert a couple of nights ago, and the baby is named Rocco.

Photo: E! Online.

Saturday, February 06, 2016

Fully Formed

Because Beyoncé hadn’t pulled enough focus from Coldplay this week, Queen B has gone and pulled a, well...a Beyoncé.

Girlfriend has dropped a new single (an homage to her southern roots) and a powerful new video set in post-Katrina New Orleans that doubles as commentary on #BlackLivesMatter, just in time for maximum exposure. Titled Formation (Dirty),” the single is a total slay.

Check it out:


You know what this means, right? More new music from Beyoncé is imminent.

Update: OMG, how aggroying: B just took down the video. Probably because TIDAL has to have the exclusive for a while.

You can still watch the video on – but hurry up. Dem ranks are closing.

Friday, February 05, 2016

Gone to Guernsey?

That Guernsey (aka The Guernsey Literary Society and Potato Peel Pie Society movie is proving tough to cast!

Kate Winslet was once attached to the project, as was 2015 breakout Rebecca Ferguson (as of last fall), but now it looks like the part is going the way of the Gone Girl herself, Academy Award nominee Rosamund Pike.

Mike Newell is being courted for the directing job, which was once earmarked for Kenneth Branagh.

Guernsey will tell the story of a British writer who travels to the remote island of Guernsey after World War II to learn about how a book club helped those living there cope with the embattled times.


Designated Investigator

Kiefer Sutherland is going to keep good company on ABC’s upcoming new straight-to-series conspiracy thriller drama, Designated Survivor.

Maggie Q (The Divergent Series, TV’s Nikita) has been cast as the lead FBI agent investigating the attack that claims everyone above the station and pay grade of Sutherland’s lower level Cabinet member-character, which leads to his becoming the acting POTUS on the show.

Joining them will be Natascha McElhone (Showtime’s Californication) as Sutherland’s wife, Kal Penn as his speech writer, and Italia Ricci (ABC Family’s Chasing Life) as his chief of staff.

This is sounding good to me, you guys.


Zola’s Storyteller

He gets props for consistency.

See, James Franco keeps finding dem in’erestin stories to tell.

The multi-hyphenate has set up Zola Tells All: The Real Story Behind the Greatest Stripper Saga Ever Tweeted, an adaptation of a Rolling Stone article about a woman who traveled to Florida with a friend and her bf, and her own violent pimp because why not.

I wonder who Franco will cast to star....


Thursday, February 04, 2016


Dan Stevens is headed back to TV. And he’s entering the Xverse.

Indeed, the erstwhile Downtoner has landed the lead on FX’s upcoming Legion, playing David Heller, the mentally ill son of Professor X.

Jean Smart (FX’s Fargo) will play his therapist, while Dirty Grandpa’s Aubrey Plaza has been tapped for the role of David’s upbeat pal Lenny.

Xverse overlords Bryan Singer and Simon Kinberg are also on board, as executive producers.


Soderbergh (Maybe) Coming Back

Channing Tatum and Steven Soderbergh are teaming up again.

But, wait. Didn’t S2 retire from making films after delivering the Tatum-co-starring Side Effects?

Guess Chan-Chan will not be denied because the Oscar-winning director, evidently, is going to retire from retirement to helm a new project reportedly titled Hillbilly Heist that will start Tatum and Matt Damon. Or Michael Shannon.

See, Variety says Damon, while Deadline insists Shannon’s the one invovled....

Oh, and the movie might be, in fact, titled Logan Lucky.

Wonder how this one will shape up in the end.


Sioux Ally

A Woman Walks Ahead, and that woman just might be Jessica Chastain.

The Snow White & the Huntsman: Winter’s War star is thisclose to signing on to headline a film by that title that director Susanna White (Generation Kill) is getting ready to helm. Ed Zwick will be producing.

Based on the true story of Catherine Weldon, a widowed artist from Brooklyn who, in 1889, journeyed to the Standing Rock Reservation in Dakota Territory to help Sitting Bull hold onto land that the government was trying to take away from his people, the Sioux.

Awards bait much?