Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015: The Year in Review, Pt. 2

And here is my more serious list, dahling – my list of the actors and actresses and films I liked best in 2015 (click here for the fun list).

Here’s to an awesome new year!

10 Best Films of the Year (in alphabetical order):

Inside Out
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian

Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Straight Outta Compton

Honorable Mention: Furious Seven

Best Directors: Lenny Abrahamson (Room), J.J. Abrams (Star Wars: The Force Awakens), Pete Docter (Inside Out), George Miller (Mad Max: Fury Road), Ridley Scott (The Martian)

Best Supporting Actors: Benicio Del Toro (Sicario), Sam Elliott (I’ll See Your in My DreamsGrandma), Harrison Ford (The Age of AdalineStar Wars: The Force Awakens), Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury Road), Jacob Tremblay (Room)

Best Supporting Actresses: Joan Allen (Room), Helen Mirren (Trumbo), Phyllis Smith (Inside Out), Alicia Vikander (Ex Machina), Kate Winslet (Steve Jobs)

Best Actors: Bryan Cranston (Trumbo), Bill Hader (Trainwreck), Matt Damon (The Martian), Michael Fassbender (Macbeth), Eddie Redmayne (The Danish Girl)

Best Actresses: Emily Blunt (Sicario), Blythe Danner (I’ll See Your in My Dreams), Brie Larson (Room), Saoirse Ronan (Brooklyn), Lily Tomlin (Grandma), Charlize Theron (Mad Max: Fury Road)

Photos: BerlinFilmJournal (Tangerine); (Room); (Grandma).

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

They Will Rise

Milk, reunited.

Director Gus Van Sant and Oscar-winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black are set to collaborate yet again on an eight-hour series that ABC has commissioned.

Titled When We Rise, the project will chronicle the rise the LGBT rights movement, from a mere flicker of hope in San Francisco to the life-changing changer of the game it has become today.

Right on.


Friday, December 25, 2015

2015: The Year in Review, Pt. 1

Who knew!

Certainly not me, that 2015 was going to go down as the year in which I didn’t, in which I couldn’t.

I didn’t watch all the films and movies in a timely, efficient fashion – because I couldn’t. Madonna occupied more head space than ever, and rightfully so (long live the Queen!). The competition from live music (Taylor Swift! Janet Jackson!) was fierce, but not as fierce as that of TV, which offered a whopping 21,000 options, the lot of which did draw my curious attention (alright, so I am exaggerating on that number, but, then again, there was a heckuva lot of s--- to watch on the tube and beyond this past year...).

And I, honestly, had better, cuter, realer entertainment in my life this year, so there: No regrets at all that I haven’t yet seen Carol.

Here’s the first part of what I thought stood out in the year that almost was. Merry Christmas, everybody!

Best Duo: Mistress America’s Greta Gerwig and Lola Kirke

Best Hair: Rose Byrne’s in Spy

Best Line: “Chewie...were home,” said by Harrison Ford in Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Best Look: Blake Lively’s in The Age of Adaline

Best Presence: Sam Elliott in I’ll See Your in My Dreams and Grandma

Best Trend: Female directors doing it for themselves (Pitch Perfect 2’s Elizabeth Banks, By the Sea’s Angelina Jolie Pitt)

Worst Trend: Bypassing theatrical releases in favor of iTunes or On Demand. Hollywood, if a movie gets made, release it how it’s meant to be seen, at least for two weeks to give us ample opportunity to see it

Best Use of Amber Heard: The Danish Girl

Most Eh Use of Amber Heard: Magic Mike XXL

Cutest: BB-8 (#obvs)

Let’s: Keep featuring minorities in leading or featured roles!

Let’s Not: Have Emma Stone play a minority she has no business playing, like in Aloha

Most Cmon!: Biopics that skimp on the bio parts (Steve Jobs)

Most Confounding, Yet Eye-catching: The heels Bryce Dallas Howard wears in Jurassic World

Most Disappointing: Avengers: Age of Ultron

Most Surprising (tie): Room’s Jacob Tremblay and women of a certain age (I’ll See Your in My Dreams’ Blythe Danner, Grandma’s Lily Tomlin)

Most Ubiquitous: San Francisco (really, the City by the Bay was in just about every other movie this year – and last, if ya think about it)

Most Welcome to the A-List: Alicia Vikander (Ex Machina, The Danish Girl)

Most Welcome: Paul Rudd’s Ant-Man

Most Welcome Back: Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky Balboa

Most Come Back to Us, Honey: Jennifer Lopez (The Boy Next Door was totally beneath her)

Most Who Knew He Could Act: Trainwreck’s LeBron James

Most Who Knew He Was So Funny: John Cena (Trainwreck, Sisters)

Most Whoa!: Chris Hemsworth’s...big contribution to Vacation

Should’ve Had a Better Year: Chris Hemsworth (Blackhat, Vacation, and In the Heart of the Sea did not work)

Can’t Wait to See More of – Female (tie): Rebecca Ferguson (Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation) and Daisy Ridley, from Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Can’t Wait to See More of – Male: John Boyega, from Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Worst Movie (tie): Hot Pursuit (for being patently bad) and Aloha (for not being better)

Photos: (Mistress America); (Pitch Perfect 2); Universal Pictures (Steve Jobs); (Ant-Man); Sony Pictures (Aloha).

Simply Irresistible, Pt. 98

OMG, you guys. Rey.

It is all about Rey now.

Yes, I just finally saw J.J. Abrams’ winning Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and all I gotta say is long live Daisy Ridley and long live her Rey!


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Beauty Lady

A Trumbo star and a Concussion star.

Yeah, that sounds kinda good.

Helen Mirren is joining Will Smith in Collateral Beauty, a project once meant to star Hugh Jackman as a New York City ad exec who suffers a terrible tragedy and finds himself slipping into a dark, dark depression, only to see his co-workers devise a plan to break him out of his blue that does not quite work they way they envisioned.

The Devil Wears Prada’s David Frankel is helming.

No word on whether Rooney Mara is still on board to co-star.


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Going Deep

Charlize Theron may have missed out on having David Fincher helm her adaptation of a Gillian Flynn novel – and on having it hit the way his Gone Girl did – but that don’t mean gf isn’t gonna work with the Academy Award-nominated director.

Oh no it don’t.

The Oscar-winning actress is all set to Netflix (and chill) now that she has signed on to star on produce the streamer’s Mindhunter.

An adaptation of the 1996 John Douglas and Mark Olshaker novel Mind Hunter: Inside the FBIs Elite Serial Crime Unit, the show will probably go behind the covered-in-the-book scenes of some of Douglas’ highest-profile cases  like that of a man who hunted prostitutes in Alaska, an Atlanta child murderer, and Seattle’s Green River killer – and delve into the investigators immersive profiling methods.

It would be kinda cool if La Theron starred in this, too, no? After all, she and Fincher have been trying to set this one up for years (HBO reportedly was in the mix at one point)....


Michelle! Yeoh!

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny is premiering on Netflix in February, and star Michelle Yeoh is sticking close to the streamer, don’t you know, don’t you know.

The actress is joining the second season of Netflix’s Marco Polo, which I bet is coming in the new year.

Yeoh will recur as a mysterious figure from the past of Hundred Eyes (Tom Wu), and, as you can see here, she will mean business.


He Will Be Rocky

Boxing movies are having a moment.

Jake Gyllenhaal recently starred in Southpaw. Creed is a blockbuster. Miles Teller and Édgar Ramírez are about to enter the ring.

And now comes word that Jeremy Renner is fixin’ to star in Undefeated: The Rocky Marciano Story, an authorized telling of the story of the heavyweight champ who held the title from 1952 to 1956, retiring undefeated, 49-0, at 32, and dying in a plane crash in 1969.

This one...could be the awards bait knockout that Renner has been looking for.


Sunday, December 20, 2015

A Friend at the West End

Break a leg, Matthew Perry!

The erstwhile Chandler Bing is going to take London in the new year, as the star of the West End production of The End of Longing, his playwriting debut.

A dark comedy centering on four lost souls entering their forties hungry for meaning that develop an irreversibly intertwined bond, The End of Longing will have a limited run beginning in early February through middle of May.

Cue up the photo opps for his old Friends, who one would think will definitely be there for him.


A Survivor to Rule the Land

It’s from protecting the president to being the president for Kiefer Sutherland.

The Emmy-winning star of TV’s 24 is eyeing a return to the tube via ABC’s new in-the-works conspiracy thriller drama show thing.

Titled Designated Survivor, the Simon (The Martian) Kinberg-produced show will center POTUS Sutherland, but only after his lower level Cabinet member-character gets promoted to the job following an attack that claims everyone above his station and pay grade.

Well that’s one way to get ahead....

We probably will get to meet the Designated Survivor – btw, that is a thing (GTS) – next fall.


Friday, December 18, 2015

Towering Idris

And speaking of Idris Elba....

The actor is looking to succeed where many before him, including Javier Bardem and Christian Bale, have not. Elba is going to star in the adaptation of Stephen Kings The Dark Tower, as Gunslinger Roland Deschain.

Matthew McConaughey is already set to portray the Man in Black, Walter Padick.

Plans are underway for The Dark Tower to come at us via the big screen and the small screen. Because multimedia.


Beyond Packed with Action

OMGwyneth, nerds. It’s the day you’ve been waiting for.

It’s the day...I finally share the first teaser for the upcoming Justin Lin-directed, Simon Pegg-co-written threequel, Star Trek Beyond. Which is beyond-packed with action.

What? Were you expecting somin else? (I havent seen it yet!)

And how could it not be a deep-space-set action extravaganza? Lin steered the Fast & Furious franchise for years, delivering four outta seven increasingly blockbustin hits so far.

Star Trek Beyond  starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoë Saldana, Idris Elba, and Sofia Boutella. among others – is due out end of next July.


Thursday, December 17, 2015

Khloé’s Koming

Don’t worry, kids: Khloé’s making the drinks.

The kountdown is officially beyond-on for Khloé Kardashian’s upkoming FIY Network – yes, that is a thing – proposition, Kocktails with Khloé.

Koko’s new solo show – solo, Kim! – is set to premiere on Jan. 20. Check your local listing and, of kourse,

Kidding! (Kinda.)

Check out this behind the scenes now.

Now! (You know you wanna.)

Oh, and girlfriend is also working on a new show for E! titled Revenge Body with Khloé Kardashian, which is not about reading or pursuing higher ed.


Covenant Woman

Being in Steve Jobs was a lonely situation for up-and-comer Katherine Waterston (if you saw the film then you know what I mean).

And things are about to get potentially lonelier for the actress.

Waterston has landed the lead in the forthcoming sequel to Prometheus, Alien: Covenant. She will play Daniels opposite her most recent leading man, Michael Fassbender (he headlined Steve Jobs – get it?), in the Ridley Scott-directed follow-up.

The Fass will reprise his role as David the robot and the sole survivor of the Prometheus expedition (R.I.P, Noomi Rapace’s character, whose name I forget?). Daniels and her crew – all on board a new ship, the aptly named Covenant – will encounter him on a remote planet that looks all idyllic and s--- but that actually belies darkness and danger.

Alien: Covenant will be the first of three new blockbusters (oh jeez) that will strive to link Prometheus with the original Alien. The movie is due out in October 2017.


The Song of 2015

When it came to picking a song for the year, the song of 2015, the one record that came to mind from which to choose, really, was Rebel Heart.

Yes, Madonna’s best and most underappreciated album in forever and a half.

And how could it not: The Grammy-snubbed Rebel Heart’s gotten the heavy-rotation treatment from me all year long, at home and at work (thank goodness for earbuds!), in the car, on my phone.... Wherever I went I found a Rebel Heart moment to be had.

And I loved it. Still do.

My affection for Ghosttown” – the No. 1 Best Song of 2015, according to Rolling Stone readers – is strong and clear (sooo bummed the Queen of Pop skipped the love-at-the-end-of-the-world ballad at the San Jose stop of her beautiful “Rebel Heart Tour in October), and I wanna move any gosh darn time I hear “Living for Love.” It was the record’s title track, however, that best encompassed the complexity of Madonna and, by proxy, mine and, heck, even that of the world.

Lyrically, it is a throwback-y kind of ditty that still sounds quite fresh and reflects not only a forward sonic development for M but a personal growth as well. It’s a song about confidence without ever saying it is so, melancholy sans schmaltz, and, possibly, Madonna’s quieter triumph ever.

Bitches she is Madonna, but, for my money, “Rebel Heart” is the song of the year. Absolutely is is. Enjoy!

Long live the Queen! Nobody does it better.

She Is Jackie

Looks like Natalie Portman will become Jackie Kennedy before she does RBG.

The Oscar-winning is currently filming Jackie, a Darren Aronofsky-produced, Pablo Larraín-helmed biopic of JKF’s first lady. This much became obvious this week once the Chilean-born director shared this first pic of Portman in costume and on set.

Looking the part, girl! Looking the part.


Papa Quill, Is That You?

Kurt Russell is going from the snowy wilderness of the Tarantinoverse to...quite the Marvelicious outer space?

Indeed, he might be.

It was revealed this week, that the Hateful Eight star was in negotiations to play Peter Quill’s long-lost alien father in director James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Peter Quill, of course, is the earthbound a.k.a. of one Star-Lord, the rascally hero role that catapulted Chris Pratt deep into that sweet, sweet A List of Hollywood.

Papa Quill reportedly will play a pivotal part in the sequels shenanigans.


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

A Different Sort of Dinner Hostess

Cate Blanchett has vacated her hosting duties.

The actress was once attached to direct the adaptation of Herman Koch’s The Dinner, you see, but it looks like she isn’t and like the project is being retooled.

Mr. HolmesLaura Linney is circling the movie, which will center on two families coming together to decide, over one dinner, how far they will go to protect their teenage sons.

Oren Moverman (The Messenger) is handling the writing of the screenplay and the helming of the production.

What happened, Cate Blanchett?


They Ain’t Afraid a No Ghost

Alright, new Ghostbusters movie. We get it. You movie stars an all-female cast.

I see you Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, Kristen Wiig, and Leslie Jones. And you look quite badass.

Now. May we get a pic of Chris Hemsworth as your new receptionist, please? Especially because I understand that constant shirtlessness was required of him for the role.

Come on...give a little.