Monday, November 30, 2015
CBS revealed the pickup on Monday morning, announcing that an additional seven episodes would be shot, bringing "Supergirl"'s first season to a total of 20 episodes. The drama stars Melissa Benoist as the titular heroine, who's struggling to adjust to her powers while also juggling a demanding day job working for a media mogul, played by Calista Flockhart.
The series has performed decently for the network, averaging 11.24 million viewers since its debut in October. While those aren't exactly blockbuster numbers, especially for the ratings powerhouse CBS, the show has gotten great buzz from critics and viewers alike, and Variety reports that the network is a fan of the show and is eager to support it. Ordering a full season is one way of doing that.
"Supergirl" joins fellow freshman shows "Limitless," "Life in Pieces," and "Code Black," which have all received either full-season or additional episode orders from CBS. Across all the networks, other new series getting full-season pickups include "Grandfathered," "The Grinder," "Rosewood," "Quantico," "Dr. Ken," "The Muppets," and "Blindspot."
"Supergirl" airs on Mondays on CBS.
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WARNING: This post contains SPOILERS about last night's "Walking Dead" midseason finale and storylines from the "Walking Dead" comics.
If you didn't tune into AMC's new show, "Into the Badlands," after "The Walking Dead" last night, you may have missed an important clue from the second half of "TWD"'s sixth season: The very first mention of Negan, the notorious villain from the "Walking Dead" comics who's set to join the show soon.
The clip, which AMC released online shortly after it aired last night, features Daryl, Sasha, and Abraham driving the abandoned fuel truck Daryl found in the woods, on their way back to Alexandria after getting jumped by a mysterious gang. That group returns to antagonize them once more in this scene, blocking the roadway with their motorcycles; one of them demands that they turn over everything they have -- including their truck -- because "Everything belongs to Negan now."
As for just who this mysterious Negan is, Jeffrey Dean Morgan was recently cast to play him, though word on the street is that he won't actually show up until the season six finale in May. So just what makes him so bad, anyway? Comics fans know him well, but for the uninitiated, it boils down to this: Negan leads with violence, and instills fear in those around him. He takes what he wants -- forcefully -- under the guise of providing security to surrounding communities. And he's also known to wield a barbed wire-bound bat, dubbed Lucille, which he uses in the comics to kill one of the original members of our Atlanta gang.
In the midseason finale, Alexandria is completely overrun by walkers, and its people are completely lost. They could be desperate -- and stupid -- enough to turn to Negan's group for help (a theory I posed in my finale preview), setting up yet another showdown between sheriff's deputy Grimes and a big bad guy.
We'll have to wait another 10 weeks until we know more. "The Walking Dead" returns for its midseason premiere on February 14.
Photo credit: Gene Page/AMC
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Peele and Peretti, who have been dating for two years, spent Turkey Day with Peretti's family, and it was there that Peele proposed. Peele announced the engagement on his Twitter page, tagging Peretti's name with an engagement ring emoji. Peretti filled in some of the details with her own tweet, writing that Peele popped the question "during the family talent show." Sounds about right for this hilarious couple.
Peele, star of the recently-wrapped Comedy Central sketch series "Key & Peele," later followed up the announcement with another tweet, this time of New York Giants footballer Odell Beckham Jr. pulling off a dazzling a one-handed catch during Sunday's game. "Had to snag my girl @chelseaperetti like..." Peele wrote of his engagement to the actress, who stars on Fox sitcom "Brooklyn Nine-Nine."
My fiancé (lololol) @JordanPeele proposed to me last night during the family talent show lolol 🌺❤️🌺— Chelsea Peretti (@chelseaperetti) November 28, 2015
[via: Jordan Peele, Chelsea Peretti]
Photo credit: Getty Images for TNT LA
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While you were busy stuffing your face this Thanksgiving weekend, Peter Jackson was in New Zealand whipping multiple fandoms into frenzies.
On his Facebook page, the "Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit" director posted a very cheeky video, with his daughter reading off his work e-mails while he polished his Oscars. (You know every winner does this every weekend. They must.) She said he got an e-mail from Steven Moffat, asking if he'll direct an episode of "Doctor Who"'; and while PJ was busy insulting Moffat's scripts, in walked another Peter, Peter Capaldi:
"I'm the Doctor."
Nice. The whole video is pretty clever, and includes a nod to "The Walking Dead" in the end, but what was the objective? Not only does it renew hopes that Peter Jackson, a "Doctor Who" fan, will direct an episode, no one missed that bookmarked copy of "The Silmarillion" on the director's desk:
What does THAT mean?! Most likely ... not much. As The Verge noted, that collection of stories was edited and published by J.R.R. Tolkien's son, Christopher, who is not a fan of the movies, and the rights are still held by the Tolkien family. So, as Peter has noted himself, it's unlikely that a movie will be made from "The Silmarillion" anytime soon.
What do you think this video means -- other than Peter maybe directing a "Doctor Who" episode -- and can you believe his daughter is all grown up now? Where did the time go?
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Will Ferrell plays the stepdad of wife Linda Cardellini's two children in "Daddy's Home," with Mark Wahlberg as the biological father. This forces Ferrell's mild-mannered executive Brad and Wahlberg's badass free spirit Dusty to compete for the affection of the kids, which already sounds like comedy gold. And now you can see some of that gold in action in this exclusive clip from the movie, which comes out on Christmas Day.
In the scene, all five extended family members -- wife Sarah, kids Megan and Dylan, and both dads -- are at a basketball game when Ferrell's Brad gets a chance to shoot from half-court and potentially win a family vacation to Disney World. All he has to do is sink a basket, and even though he slurs "Nothin' but net!" before shooting, you can see that he does hit something other than net. And she's probably not happy about it.
Even before doing ... that ... he says he's going to make it right, so we can expect something else to have gone wrong even before this pretty embarrassing moment. But dang it, he's trying, and he did say he loves the kids, so that's what counts, right?
"Daddy's Home" is in theaters December 25th, 2015.
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New Video on Demand, Rental Streaming, and Digital Only
"Imba Means Sing"
This heartwarming documentary follows the journey of 20 Ugandan children in the African Children's Choir who spent 500 days on tour singing their way to better lives. The doc debuts globally On Demand on December 4, with 100 percent of the filmmaker profits going back to the choir.
Here's an exclusive clip of the kids sharing what they want to be when they grow up: "Ted 2"
The foul-mouthed teddy bear is back! In this sequel, Ted marries his girlfriend, then they hit a snag with the birth of their child, since the law sees Ted as property, not a person. Cue Amanda Seyfried and Morgan Freeman as attorneys getting all "Legally Blonde" for Ted's cause. Mark Wahlberg returns as John, with Seth directing and voicing Ted. The digital release is this week, with the DVD/Blu-ray to come -- including several bonus features -- on December 15.
"The Transporter Refueled"
The fourth movie in the "Transporter" franchise loses Jason Statham as Frank Martin, but puts Ed Skrein (briefly Daario on "Game of Thrones") in the same role for another nonstop action ride. The critics didn't love this one, but it still has its defenders and you can check it out for yourself with the Digital HD release on December 1, and the Blu-ray/DVD to follow on December 8.
New on DVD and Blu-ray
"Fear the Walking Dead""The Walking Dead" spinoff that isn't technically a spinoff only had six episodes in its first season, but you can watch them all in a row -- with special features -- when Season 1 hits Blu-ray and DVD on December 1. The two-disc sets include character bios and "A Look at the Series."
The powerful Amy Winehouse documentary arrives on DVD/Blu-ray on December 1, complete with special features and 17 previously unseen scenes from Amy's personal archives.
Elijah Wood, Alison Pill, and Rainn Wilson star in this horror comedy about killer zombie children at an elementary school and the teachers who must work together to escape. The movie is out on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital HD on December 1 (it's already On Demand), with special features including deleted, extended, and alternate scenes, a gag reel, commentary, and a couple of featurettes.
New on Netflix
"A Very Murray Christmas"
Bill Murray + a dozen A-list stars + Sofia Coppola + Christmas = Must-See TV. Not that it's on TV, it's on Netflix. Either way, this Coppola-directed special is an "homage to the classic variety show" and it arrives December 4. The cast includes George Clooney, Miley Cyrus, Paul Shaffer, Amy Poehler, Julie White, Dimitri Dimitrov, Michael Cera, Chris Rock, David Johansen, Maya Rudolph, Jason Schwartzman, Jenny Lewis, Rashida Jones, and more. Set inside New York City's iconic Carlyle hotel, the story opens with Murray preparing to host a live, international holiday broadcast. After a blizzard shuts down the production, he makes the best of the situation by singing and celebrating with friends, hotel employees, and anyone else who drops by. Miley supposedly steals the show, so see it for that, if nothing else.
Here's another Netflix Original, starring Rob Schneider in a semi-autobiographical comedy series, kind of like Aziz Ansari's "Master of None." This scripted series is meant to be an exaggerated yet brutally honest depiction of Schneider's real life. Season 1 guest stars include George Lopez, David Spade, and Norm Macdonald. It hits Netflix December 1.
"I'm Brent Morin"
Comedian Brent Morin, of NBC's "Undateable," shot his first-ever one-hour comedy special back in August and it's coming to Netflix on December 1. Here's Netflix's tease: "In a witty solo, Brent Morin serves up infectious laughs on the agony of puberty, hot guy problems, and the time a girl dumped him for a magician."
TV Worth Watching
"America's Next Top Model" (Friday on The CW at 9 p.m.)This is it. The entire "ANTM" series ends with the finale of Cycle 22. Who will win, Nyle, Lacey, Mamé, Mikey, or Dammit It'd Better Be Nyle? We choose that last one.
"The Great Holiday Baking Show" (Monday on ABC at 10 p.m.)
An American version of the warm and delicious U.K. hit "The Great British Bake Off" is coming to ABC, complete with Mary Berry as a judge, and "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" star Nia Vardalos and her husband Ian Gomez as hosts. The November 30 premiere is focused on Christmas cookies, with "Cake Week" to follow on December 7, and so on.
"Top Chef" (Wednesday on Bravo at 10 p.m.)
Season 13, aka "Top Chef: California," has a two-night premiere December 2-3, with 17 chefs; a bunch of new locations; host Padma Lakshmi; and judges Tom Colicchio, Gail Simmons, Emeril Lagasse, and Richard Blais. Grayson Schmitz of "Top Chef: Texas" is one of the contestants, so wish her luck on her second course of competition!
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"I was petrified," Daisy told Glamour, in a cover story for the magazine's January 2016 issue. "I thought I was gonna have a panic attack on the first day. J.J. ... he probably doesn't remember telling me that my performance was wooden. This was my first day! And I honestly wanted to die. I thought I was gonna cry, I couldn't breathe."
Maybe that was part of J.J.'s hazing process? Just watching the trailers and clips and TV spots, you can already see a multi-dimensional performance from Daisy, so she can leave that "wooden" comment behind. Not that she has seen her full "Force Awakens" performance. She told Glamour, "I haven't seen the film yet - I kinda want to, and I kinda don't - Steven Spielberg's seen it three times, as he told me when I met him!" But did he say anything about her performance? If he said she was wooden too, she probably would've gone into hiding, so he must've liked what he saw (all three times).
"Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens" opens December 18th, 2015.
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In the trailer, poster Anthony Meadows notes, "Cap says hello to Tony from the other side." Here's the emotional missed connection:
Unlike most "mashups" videos, this one doesn't re-edit footage to fit the theme, it just rolls with Marvel's actual trailer. You could probably do the same thing for "Batman v Superman" and a bunch of other superhero and action movies. Maybe that's the next step -- take scenes from multiple superhero bromances and re-edit them into one supercut set to Adele's ... anything.
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It started innocently enough with a Twitter question about the name of one of Harry Potter's sons, and spiraled into what J.K. Rowling herself called an "unplanned debate: "Snape: Good, Evil or What?"
Here's the initial question, Patient Zero of this debate, which references the middle name of Harry's second son, Albus Severus Potter:
@jk_rowling Why did you pick Snape to name Harry's kid after? I'm genuinely curious as he was nothing but abusive towards everyone.— △⃒⃘Jasmine△⃒⃘ (@FrazzyJazzy7) November 27, 2015
That fan quickly got some heated responses from Severus Snape defenders, but here's what Rowling herself replied:
Snape died for Harry out of love for Lily. Harry paid him tribute in forgiveness and gratitude. https://t.co/MPXBgUApa3— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
And the debate just flew wild like a Snitch from there, with Rowling responding to various arguments and calling for peace on both sides:
I've got to say this: you lot have been arguing about Snape for years. My timeline just exploded with love & fury yet again. Never change x— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
That's not true, I'm afraid. Snape projected his hatred and jealousy of James onto Harry. https://t.co/5jzNHlfSe0— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
There's a whole essay in why Harry gave his son Snape's name, but the decision goes to the heart of who Harry was, post-war.— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
This morning I've been thinking a lot about the appeal of simple dichotomies in our messy world, then you raise Snape! Highly appropriate.— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
Snape is all grey. You can't make him a saint: he was vindictive & bullying. You can't make him a devil: he died to save the wizarding world— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
In honouring Snape, Harry hoped in his heart that he too would be forgiven. The deaths at the Battle of Hogwarts would haunt Harry forever.— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
No, not a rant; I'm thoughtful, not upset! Snape deserves both admiration and disapprobation, like most of us. https://t.co/okYVt9WFsf— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
See what you started, @FrazzyJazzy7? I need to get back to work. Have a good day, Snape-lovers, haters and in-betweeners all xxxx— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
Snape was a bully who loved the goodness he sensed in Lily without being able to emulate her. That was his tragedy. https://t.co/nzWhNrBxdH— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
(Just come back to Twitter to find the great Snape debate still raging)— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
Snape didn't die for 'ideals'. He died in an attempt to expiate his own guilt. He could have broken cover at any time to save himself 1/2— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
but he chose not to tell Voldemort that the latter was making a fatal error in targeting Harry. Snape's silence ensured Harry's victory. 2/2— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
Harry chose to perpetuate the names of the two who had nobody in their families to do so. https://t.co/uwQVA9Tz9O— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
Please could we all keep our discussion about this fictional character civil? There's enough rage on Twitter without Snape-related hate.— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
I love Twitter questions! But I don't like a character I love being used as a pretext to abuse other readers. https://t.co/jOn0L6N6HY— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
He stood to gain nothing personally but the triumph of the cause Lily had believed in. He was trying to do right. https://t.co/h00btgHwSI— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
Well, thanks to everyone who participated in today's unplanned debate: "Snape: Good, Evil or What?" People to dinner - got to go! xxx— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) November 27, 2015
Whew! Harry Potter defeated Voldemort a while ago, but the fan wars are still raging on. It's easy to see both sides of "the great Snape debate," and some fans may be salty about Rowling's defense of Snape when she regularly disses Draco Malfoy and chides fans for crushing on him. Either way, it is a darn good thing these Twitter detours keep happening to J.K. Rowling and not "A Song of Ice and Fire" author George R.R. Martin or he would NEVER finish Book 6 before "Game of Thrones" ends.
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"Gods of Egypt" is a fantasy film inspired by the classic mythology of Egypt, starring Gerard Butler, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Geoffrey Rush, and Brenton Thwaites. Here's how director Alex Proyas and Lionsgate responded to the calls of whitewashing (via Forbes):
"The process of casting a movie has many complicated variables, but it is clear that our casting choices should have been more diverse. I sincerely apologize to those who are offended by the decisions we made."
"We recognize that it is our responsibility to help ensure that casting decisions reflect the diversity and culture of the time periods portrayed. In this instance we failed to live up to our own standards of sensitivity and diversity, for which we sincerely apologize. Lionsgate is deeply committed to making films that reflect the diversity of our audiences. We have, can and will continue to do better."
Ridley Scott faced similar whitewashing calls when he cast Christian Bale and Joel Edgerton as Moses and Ramses in "Exodus: Gods and Kings." He took a different approach, though, arguing that he could never get funding for his $140 million epic without a major name in the lead role and there just aren't enough A-listers from the actual place where the story is set. "I can't mount a film of this budget, where I have to rely on tax rebates in Spain, and say that my lead actor is Mohammad so-and-so from such-and-such," Scott told Variety. "I'm just not going to get it financed. So the question doesn't even come up."
Variety noted that "The Passion of the Christ," "Noah," "The Ten Commandments," and "virtually any other big-budget Bible movies" also cast white Europeans, Americans, and Australians. But that sounds like less of a valid reason for casting white stars than a valid reason for casting more non-white people in roles that can give them a chance to build A-list level profiles, so the financiers who only care about money become more willing to back big-budget films led by people other colors than spray-tanned white.
Fans had mixed responses to the "Gods of Egypt" apologies, but here's "Selma" director Ava DuVernay to leave things on a mostly positive note:
This kind of apology never happens - for something that happens all the time. An unusual occurrence worth noting. https://t.co/xRTEy7woWs— Ava DuVernay (@AVAETC) November 28, 2015
GODS OF EGYPT makes me value Abrams' STAR WARS choices more. Makes me cheer more for Coogler's CREED. We all deserve icons in our own image.— Ava DuVernay (@AVAETC) November 28, 2015
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What happens after the sunset sets, the passionate kiss commences, and the credits roll? Not every romantic comedy couple can live happily ever after -- it's statistically impossible. We're sure there are a handful of cinematic lovebirds that are sure to grow old together, but you have to admit that some pairings are just clearly not meant to be. Here are 8 rom-com couples who are definitely broken up by now.
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Sunday, November 29, 2015
Unfortunately for viewers, that moment was one of the most dramatic things to happen during this ho-hum hour, which didn't address nearly as many of the plotlines I'd hoped it would, and had incredibly low stakes, despite the loss of a (somewhat) major character, and the presence of all those zombies milling around outside – and now inside a few houses, too. It makes sense that the walkers' eradication will be a long, slow process, considering the strength of their ranks, and it also made sense to linger for a bit on our various survivors' reactions to their invasion, since for some (Jessie, Sam, Ron, Deanna), this is a brand new experience. But such a micro focus pulled attention away from other macro problems that I think could have – and should have – been better served. Tonight's episode felt less like a midseason finale, and more like a penultimate episode; the pieces were put in place, but not enough of them moved forward for my taste.
Consider the demise of Deanna, whose death was surprisingly emotional, considering what little time we've spent with this character. I was glad to see her come to terms with her eventual transition into zombiehood, and offer to off herself so that no one else would have to. And she officially made Rick HBIC, telling the constable that everyone in Alexandria was "his people" now. But did we really need two separate scenes of her ruminating about her life, "Start to finish"? (A phrase that also served as the episode's title.) Deanna seemed to be passing her idealism torch to Michonne, and that will no doubt be an important character arc for her moving into the second half of the season; but asking her several times "What do you want?" seemed a bit ill-timed. There's a walker invasion happening right outside – right downstairs, in fact. Surely, planning Alexandria's expansion can wait?
What can't wait is addressing the serious mental health problems of Sam and Ron, who both have separate breakdowns this week. Ron goes off the rails and finally attacks Carl, breaking a window tand attracting the walker horde, which eagerly comes to investigate. Rick rushes in to save them, and Carl lies about their argument, though he later confronts Ron, demanding the teen turn over his gun and getting in another good dig at his foe. "Look man, I get it – my dad killed your dad," Carl says of their mutual dislike. "But you need to know something:Your dad was an asshole." Look who's dropping truth bombs. Is Carl kind of awesome now? (I don't know who I am anymore.)
Not so awesome is Sam, who's still refusing to come out of his room, leaving his favorite food, cookies, unattended so long that a colony of ants has set upon a discarded dish in the corner. (The ants streaming in through his window represent the walkers streaming in through Alexandria's crumbled walls, in case that metaphor wasn't heavy-handed enough for you.) Setting aside the fact that his dad is dead and his house was just recently attacked by Wolves, what seems to be consuming Sam the most is his conversation with Carol last season, in which she threatened to lash him to a tree and let the walkers have him if he snitched on her stealing from the armory. Listening to a record playing "Tiptoe Through the Tulips" (every 11-year-old owns a portable turntable and a stack of vintage novelty singles, right?), Sam happily sketches himself in that exact scenario, as if he's completing an application for Ms. Peletier's Home for Peculiar Children. (Previous enrollees included Lizzie and Mika, and we all know how that worked out.) His mother seems to have completely forgotten that he's even in his room until it's time for them to leave, drenched in zombie guts, at which point she pleads with him to "just pretend you're brave." Way to shade your own kid, lady.
Turns out she had reason to worry about Sam's stiff upper lip, though, since he immediately starts freaking out as the group gingerly steps off the front steps and attempts to make its way through the walker horde undetected. Judith, a literal baby, isn't crying, but the tween can't stop whining for his mommy. What would Carol say?
Our resident badass continues her tradition of delivering tough love, confronting Morgan in an attempt to finally force his hand over his pacifist attitude. She fakes a concussion to seek out and slay the Wolf Morgan has hidden away, and finds the prisoner with Denise, who had been inspecting his nasty wound. (And also trying to talk him down from his monstrous machinations. Bless your heart, Denise, but your wide-eyed innocence here is concerning.) Carol and Morgan have a circuitous conversation in which they each argue their point (Morgan: "We can be better than them." Carol: "We are better than them." Morgan: "Not if we kill." Carol: "They made us kill."), before Carol lays down the (clumsily-worded) law. "I will kill you to kill him, because I don't want anyone else to die," she says, thrusting her knife at Mogan. Morgan snaps, batting the weapon away and wrestling with Carol before body-slamming her to the floor. The Wolf, sensing his moment, pounces on Morgan, taking him down and pulling a knife on Denise, who he then takes hostage as a horrified Tara, Rosita, and Eugene look on (after giving him all their weapons. Because that's not a stupid idea at all).
Sadly, Denise's potential death doesn't really hold any importance, no matter how much I like her as a character. Her presence on the show is still purely peripheral, and randomly entangling her in the Wolves' storyline doesn't suddenly change that. Instead of finding out if Glenn and Maggie ever reunite, or if Maggie survives her trip atop that wobbly platform, or whether or not Daryl, Abraham, and Sasha ever make it back from their mission, we're left with a lot of loose ends in desperate need of tying. Not everything can be solved in an hour, of course, and the whole point of a midseason finale is to built tension and anticipation for the next batch of episodes. Alas, the show's approach this time around has only made me shrug. I can certainly wait 11 weeks to find out how the storylines addressed this week shake out; the point is that I shouldn't be able to. The show would do well to remember that sense of urgency.
- Daryl, Abe, and Sasha did make an appearance, however, in what was dubbed a "prologue" for the midseason premiere, which aired during "Into the Badlands." (AMC is trying everything in its power to get people to watch that series, it seems, even delaying the massively popular "Talking Dead" for its sake.) The short clip featured the trio coming across a group of bikers – no doubt the same ones who gunned them down in episode 6 – who demand they turn over all their gear. "Everything belongs to Negan now," the lead baddie says, the first time the villain's name has been uttered on the series so far. Negan is a major antagonist from the comics (more background on him can be found here, though major SPOILERS abound), and now it seems his introduction is imminent. He and his group are particularly evil, and should make some big waves as season six continues.
- Eugene seems to be the one that Daryl, Sasha, and Abraham heard calling out for help on the walkie talkie.
- Maggie's harrowing escape from the walkers and climb onto the watch tower was almost an exact mirror of Glenn's scene on top of the dumpster, down to the overhead view of her perched above the frothing horde below. It should also be noted that there have been several similar shots this season of bodies splayed out like Maggie's (scenes involving Ron and Daryl come to mind), and I'm wondering if that's a significant, specific choice signaling a grim end for any or all of those characters.
- As they watch the wall crumble, Glenn and Enid have another conversation about how Enid shouldn't give up on the world. I just couldn't bring myself to care.
- Kudos to the makeup people for making that Wolf look as gross and clammy as you'd expect a murderous psycho with a gaping, infected wound to look.
- Deanna explains to Michonne the meaning of the Latin phrase, "Dolor hic tibi proderit olim," that she scrawled on her map of Alexandria. Sometimes I forget that they don't have Google in the zombie apocalypse.
- Jessie's penchant for creating elaborate metal sculptures comes back to bite her: The walkers knock it over, and the sound attracts more to her house. The unexpected melodrama caused by her craftiness tickled me.
- Loved the shot of Eugene reading a World History textbook by lighter light. Deanna would be proud that he made education a priority.
- Father Gabriel is supremely grossed out by the drenching-ourselves-in-zombie-guts-to-go-undetected plan, but later assures Rick that he will not bail on them. If you have to make that promise out loud, it's probably not one you're going to keep, dude. Way to continue to be a waste of time and space on this show.
- The shot of everyone standing shoulder-to-shoulder on Jessie's porch, wearing their walker innard ponchos, struck me as a family portrait of sorts – albeit an extremely strange, strained, and smelly one.
- The return of that innard device, by the way, once again begs the question: If this is such a surefire method of getting zombies to leave you alone, why on earth have they only deployed it a handful of times throughout the series's run? It seems that Rick and co. should keep a pile of zombies on hand at all times just for such occasions, right? Then again, that solution would just be too logical for this show.
And with that, we're wrapped until February 14. See you for the midseason premiere, everyone.
Photo credit: Gene Page/AMC
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"Inside Out" missed that brass ring this summer -- only due to the unexpected staying power of "Jurassic World." Now, "The Good Dinosaur" has underperformed over Thanksgiving weekend, a frame that Disney and Pixar have all but owned over the past two decades.
By most standards, the estimated $39.2 million opening weekend "Dinosaur" enjoyed would be cause for celebration. Indeed, Disney is touting the $55.6 million the film has earned since it premiered last Wednesday as the fourth-biggest five-day Thanksgiving weekend debut ever. ("Frozen" is tops, followed by "Toy Story 2" and "Tangled.")
But Pixar movies have traditionally done much better -- opening on average above $60 million. In fact, "Dinosaur" saw the lowest three-day wide-release debut for a Pixar picture since "A Bug's Life" earned $33.3 million back in 1998, when tickets were a lot cheaper.
Advance tracking for "Dinosaur" was already soft by Pixar standards, with most analysts expecting the movie to open between $50 and $53 million from Friday to Sunday, and from $60 to $75 million over the five-day holiday weekend. Why did the movie fail to reach even those relatively-modest expectations? Here are five possible reasons:
1. The Movie's Troubled Production History
"Dinosaur" was initially scheduled for release a year ago, but due to story problems, the studio replaced the film's director and pushed back its release date. "Dinosaur" is hardly the first Pixar film to have to go back to the drawing board -- even "Toy Story" ran into similar problems -- but it's possible this time that not everything that was wrong got fixed. For example:
2. Too family-oriented
Usually, this is a plus for an animated movie, but one key to Pixar's success has been its ability to appeal to adults as well as kids. By most accounts, however, "Dinosaur" has lots of kid appeal but little to interest grown-ups. In fact, Disney is reporting that only 17 percent of the "Dinosaur" audience was adults.
3. Less-than-stellar Reviews
A 77 percent "fresh" rating at Rotten Tomatoes isn't bad, but original-premise Pixar films and movies in the "Toy Story" franchise typically rate at a 96 or higher. At least the word-of-mouth has been top-notch, with viewers giving the movie an "A" CinemaScore, but you have to get them into theaters to see it first. The weaker-than-usual reviews may have kept adults away from this movie.
4. No Star Power
This shouldn't matter much when it comes to a film where you can't even see the stars, and where the target audience is kids too young to care much who's doing the voice work. In practice, however, most of Pixar's movies have relied upon big-name talent for at least the lead characters (think Tom Hanks for the "Toy Story" movies).
But the "Dinosaur" cast is led by unknowns Raymond Ochoa and Jack Bright. Arguably, the biggest names in the cast are Anna Paquin and Frances McDormand. None of these are box office draws.
5. Stronger-than-expected Competition
Last week saw the weakest-ever opening for a "Hunger Games" movie, but "Mockingjay -- Part 2" held on better than expected, losing just under 50 percent of its business to take in an estimated $51.6 million over the three-day weekend and remain in first place.
Boxing drama "Creed" (above) was widely expected to open in the low-to-mid twenties, but it slugged its way to an estimated $30.0 million from Friday to Sunday and $42.6 million over the five-day holiday. Strong reviews, excellent word-of-mouth, and the "Rocky" nostalgia factor all helped "Creed" attract an older, predominantly male audience. By contrast, "Dinosaur" not only skewed young, but also female, with 53 percent of the audience. To the extent that it was trying to appeal to all ages and to equal numbers of men and women, both "Mockingjay" and "Creed" bit into the potential "Dinosaur" audience.
Disney and Pixar have held themselves to lofty standards. Not only have Pixar's movies typically done better, but so has Disney at Thanksgiving, where eight of the top-10 turkey holiday five-day weekend debuts of all time belong to the Mouse House.
Given how good Disney's marketing machine is at selling original-premise cartoons at this time of year, especially Pixar offerings, it seems that someone is badly off their game.
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"The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2" held on to its first-place spot in its second weekend in theaters, earning $51.6 million to top "The Good Dinosaur" and "Creed," which both debuted Wednesday, according to Rentrak estimates on Sunday.
The fourth and final installment in Lionsgate's highly successful series has grossed $198.3 million to date.
Audiences had their pick of genres over the crowded Thanksgiving weekend. Disney and Pixar's animated dinosaur movie took second place, bringing in $39.2 million Friday through Sunday, while "Creed," a new entry into the Rocky Balboa canon, came in third with $30.1 million.
Families accounted for 79 percent of "The Good Dinosaur's" audience. The film, which cost a reported $175 million to $200 million to produce, grossed $55.6 million in its first five days in theaters.
"This Pixar group has just been so consistent with high-quality storytelling that appeals to all audiences. This weekend's result is another testament to the way they do things," said Dave Hollis, executive vice president of distribution for Disney. "We are off and running in a great way and also set up for a very, very long run."
"Creed," meanwhile, came out swinging. The critically acclaimed Ryan Coogler-directed film focuses on the character of Apollo Creed's son, Adonis (Michael B. Jordan) who wants his own shot in the ring with the help of Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone). The film cost $35 million to make and has earned $42.6 million over five days.
Its audience has been largely male and over age 25, according to exit polls.
"This is a movie that played broadly everywhere. You expect it to do well in the big markets and even the medium-size markets, but the small markets were just fantastic," said Jeffrey Goldstein, executive vice president of domestic distribution for Warner Bros. "The boxing element really resonates."
Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for Rentrak, said the indie sensibilities, critical response and stellar cast has made "Creed" the movie to see right now.
"This is a movie that's going to go the distance," Dergarabedian said.
James Bond film "Spectre," with $12.8 million, and "The Peanuts Movie," with $9.7 million, rounded out the top five.
"Victor Frankenstein" was not so lucky. The $40 million revival of Mary Shelley's monster classic, starring James McAvoy and Daniel Radcliffe, proved lifeless in theaters, earning just $2.35 million from Friday to Sunday.
Awards hopeful "The Danish Girl," starring Eddie Redmayne as the transgender artist Lili Elbe, also opened in four theaters with a solid $185,000.
No records were broken this Thanksgiving weekend, but that's more of a sign of a crowded slate than the health of the box office, Dergarabedian said.
"Rankings are not as important this weekend as how these films can play for the long haul," he said. "I haven't seen this crowded of a marketplace in years. ... I don't know how anyone would have time to see everything."
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The Alexandrians Need to Prove Themselves
This is the most obvious obstacle currently facing our survivors: Last week's episode ended with the church tower crumbling down, taking out the community's wall with it. Now, dozens of walkers are streaming in, and Alexandria is once again under attack. How will its residents handle this new, undead challenge? The Wolves' assault left the community broken and battered, both physically and emotionally. Can they rise above that anguish, and put their newly-acquired training into use? These people have proven themselves inept to just about every challenge thrown their way; there's a good chance that that will still be true tonight, and the results could, once again, be devastating.
Wolves May Pounce Again (With an Assist From Enid)
All those zombies milling around could mean another Wolf attack, since the Alexandrians will be distracted as they try to fend off this fresh threat, paving the way for the Wolves to once again infiltrate the community and finish what they started. They also have to rescue their friend, who Morgan has hidden away in a cell. And they may have another accomplice on the inside: Enid. Based on her previous actions, we're pretty sure she's a Wolf, though her recent run-in with Glenn suggests she's trying to turn over a new leaf. But as the saying goes, you can't teach an old
Glenn and Maggie Still Need to Reunite
As for Mr. Rhee, miraculously surviving what should have been certain death is just one the latest amazing feats he's accomplished. He's also been traveling alone with a teenage girl, too, and that's gotta test anyone's sanity. Will we finally see his long-awaited reunion with Maggie? His poor, pregnant wife has been worried sick about him, and now that he's finally given her a sign that he's alive, it would be cruel to further drag out their separation. Then again, this is "The Walking Dead," and cruel character developments seem to be the name of the game. (See: Faking Glenn's death in the first place. Still not over that.) The fact that the wall came down only moments after Glenn sent up those balloons may mean that this story has to remain unresolved until the show returns in February, serving as a dramatic cliffhanger to stew over in the months ahead.
Morgan's Morality Is in Jeopardy
Morgan has been determined to stick to his "All life is precious" routine, even in the face of the Wolves' pure evil (and despite Rick, Carol, and Michonne's best efforts to convince him of his foolishness). He kidnapped a member of the pack in an effort to get him to see the error of his ways, and eventually change, just like Morgan did. But also like Morgan, this Wolf is obstinate, too, and tells his captor that even if he dies, the Alexandrians won't win this fight. So will Morgan be forced to change his tune, and kill this man before he kills him (and the rest of the community, including its children)? Morgan's trajectory has been building toward a big moment like this, and he's been questioning his moral code for a few episodes now; will he break that code, or will he simply break?
There's a New Sheriff in Town -- and Not Everyone Is Happy
As we mentioned in our season six preview, a major power struggle has been brewing in Alexandria, and it's set to boil over at any minute. Rick, with Deanna's blessing, has asserted himself as the de facto leader of the community, and while there have been a few loudmouths who questioned this decision (Carter, who's dead; Blue Shirt Guy from episode 3, who's dead -- sensing a pattern here?), it's been an unspoken rule that the constable is pretty much in charge now. But Spencer isn't a fan of this turn of events (his daring -- and dumb -- attempt to climb over the walkers without Rick's consent proved that), and will likely continue to butt heads with Mr. Grimes. He almost got himself killed last week; could his hotheadedness finish the job tonight (and take down some bystanders, too)? And then there's Jessie's son Ron, who stole some bullets and seems determined to kill a cocky Carl (and he's not a big fan of Rick, his mom's new boyfriend, either). His possession of a now-loaded weapon could spell serious trouble for our original survivors.
Another Mysterious Group Is Nearby
Yet another potential danger is the mysterious sect that Daryl discovered in episode 6, which promised safety to those around them at a high price (and also tried to kill him, Sasha, and Abraham). He helped a trio of defectors evade its search party, though the surviving duo eventually double-crossed him and returned to the fold, lamely explaining that even the illusion of security in this inherently dangerous world was good enough for them. Their gang seems poised for a return (was it them crying out on the walkie talkie?), especially if they happen to show up just as the walkers (or the Wolves) are streaming into Alexandria. What will they ask – or take – in exchange for help? Or maybe they won't help at all, but let our survivors dangle until they're desperate enough to need assistance, no matter the cost? That could be prime time to swoop in and appear to save the day – and some of the weaker-minded members of the community (pretty much all of them, save our core group) may be more than eager to give up anything to get back some of their recently-lost peace of mind.
"The Walking Dead" midseason finale airs tonight at 9 p.m. on AMC.
Photo credit: Gene Page/AMC
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Saturday, November 28, 2015
These are the 12 times we saw ourselves in Kevin Malone.
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Friday, November 27, 2015
TheWrap reports that the "Boy Meets World" spinoff will begin production on season three starting in January, and the new episodes will start airing sometime early next year.
"[Creator] Michael Jacobs has one of the most authentic voices in television today," said Adam Bonnett, executive vice president of programming at Disney Channel, in a statement. "He and the entire 'Girl Meets World' team will not only continue to entertain families but also help kids discover who they are and who they want to be in this world."
"Girl"'s high school trajectory follows that forged by titular character Riley's (Rowan Blanchard) parents, Cory (Ben Savage) and Topanga (Danielle Fishel), on original ABC series "Boy Meets World." The current season of "Girl" has revolved around middle schooler Riley's adventures with her BFF Maya (Sabrina Carpenter), and a love triangle that has developed between the girls and Riley's first suitor, Lucas (Peyton Meyer).
Season three of "Girl Meets World" debuts sometime during spring 2016 on the Disney Channel.
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What Your Scottsdale Car Mechanic Wants You to Know What Your Scottsdale Car Mechanic Wants You to Know! Here are a few things that your auto mechanic wishes you knew! Scottsdale, Arizona As your car mechanic, I understands that whenever … Continue reading →
The post What Your Scottsdale Car Mechanic Wants You to Know appeared first on scottsdalemuffler.com.
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Married producing team Laurie MacDonald and Walter Parkes revealed in an interview with BBC Newsbeat that they were looking to add some estrogen to the hit sci-fi/comedy franchise.
"There will be a prominent woman in black in the fourth [film]," MacDonald told Newsbeat.
The producers added that they consider the first three "MIB" films to be a complete trilogy that focused on the relationship between Smith's Agent J and Tommy Lee Jones's Agent K. With the fourth flick, they say, they're looking to tell a new story in the "Men in Black" universe.
"Now we are looking at a reinvention," Parkes told Newsbeat. "But it's a wonderful world to get back into."
As for Smith, there's no official word yet from the actor's camp about his potential involvement in the new film, and such a commitment is probably still a long way off. But according to Parkes and MacDonald, there's a possibility he could still be involved, if he's open to the idea.
"Never count Will out," Parkes told Newsbeat.
Sounds like good advice to us.
[via: BBC Newsbeat]
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In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Lawrence revealed that she's already lined up her next project, and instead of acting in front of the camera, the Oscar winner will be calling the shots from behind the lens.
"I've signed on to direct something called 'Project Delirium' — it's based on this article about mental warfare in the '60s, like an acid experiment gone terribly wrong," Lawrence told EW.
According to the magazine, the flick is based on a 2012 article from The New Yorker called "Operation Delirium," which "focused on military doctors running experiments on soldiers throughout the Cold War." There's no word yet on when Lawrence is set to get to work, but according to the actress, she's had the directing bug for her entire career.
"I have wanted to direct as long as I've wanted to act. I just don't talk about it because I'd rather just do it," Lawrence explained to EW. " ... I've wanted to direct since I was 16 and always thought I should start making steps towards that. If I had tried to do it earlier, I wouldn't have been ready. Now I actually feel ready."
The actress also said she'd love to direct a comedy someday. Maybe she can helm her upcoming flick that she's writing with Amy Schumer?
[via: Entertainment Weekly]
Photo credit: Getty Images
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Word spread online this week that Coca-Cola, Hi-C's parent company, had filed an application to renew the trademark for the Ecto Cooler name, prompting speculation that the drink is due for a revival. The new "Ghostbusters," starring Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones, is slated for release on July 15, 2016.
Ecto Cooler was initially created as a cross-promotional product tied to "The Real Ghostbusters" animated series, and first hit shelves in 1987. The bright green, citrus-flavored juice featured green ghost Slimer on the packaging, and has become a staple of '90s nostalgia. It was so popular that it long out-lived the show, finally getting discontinued in 2001.
The drink's return isn't a certainty just yet -- the trademark documents show that the last action on the application was filed earlier this month -- but based on other nostalgia-tied products' recent returns, it seems like a good bet that we'll all be sipping Ecto Cooler next summer. Stay tuned.
[via: Justia, h/t Distractify]
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Penny might be the only member of her squad that doesn't have an advanced degree or a firm grasp of string theory and microbiology, but that doesn't mean we should show her any less love. The first lady of "The Big Bang Theory," played by the lovely Kaley Cuoco, is witty, adorable, and chock full of epic Sheldon burns. We're all for watching nerds do their hilarious nerd things on TV, but let's give it up for the always-endearing Penny too. Here are 18 times she was the best part of "The Big Bang Theory."
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In the holiday spirit, here's a list of the all-time best Christmas movies ever made, the ones that acknowledge the joy and exuberance of the holiday season and its anxiety and stress.
These are films we turn to over and over each December because they remind us, at a time of year when expectations are lofty, of both who we are and of who we aspire to be.
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Thursday, November 26, 2015
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In most films depicting the November holiday, Thanksgiving is a disaster. From travel nightmares to squabbling relatives to kitchen catastrophes, almost no one in the movies is able to stage a Thanksgiving that looks even remotely like a Rockwell painting or a Stewart magazine spread. Of course, since most of us fall similarly short of perfection at our real-life Thanksgivings, we can identify with both the frazzled hosts and irked guests we see on the big screen.
So, if you need to feel better about your own thankless Thanksgiving, here are 11 terrible Turkey Days you can watch. Have a little schadenfreude with your candied yams.
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Wednesday, November 25, 2015
On the Hollywood Reporter's Awards Chatter podcast, Smith talked about how the character he plays in his upcoming movie "Concussion" made a real difference in the world. Dr. Bennet Omalu took on the National Football League for covering up concerns that concussions could have long-term negative effets on players. And Smith wants to do make a difference, too — perhaps by getting into politics.
"I think that that's what my grandmother always hoped, that I would make myself useful to people in this lifetime," he said, adding, "And, you know, as I look at the political landscape, I think that there might be a future out there for me. They might need me out there. This is the first year that I've been incensed to a level that I can't sleep, you know?"
Years ago, Smith joked about wanting to become the first black president. Too late for that, but there's always second, Will!
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PG-13 wasn't even a thing until 1984, with "Red Dawn" as the first movie with that rating from the MPAA. That was after the original releases of "Episode IV - A New Hope (1977), "Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back" (1980), and "Episode VI - Return of the Jedi" (1983).
Last year, Forbes wrote a whole piece titled "Why 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Should Be Rated PG," but apparently their arguments were not strong enough. It may not make parents happy, but a PG-13 rating shouldn't hurt the movie at the box office. As Entertainment Weekly noted, "Revenge of the Sith" grossed $380 million, which was $70 million more than its PG-rated predecessor, "Attack of the Clones." Plus, they noted, the top five movies in box-office history are all rated PG-13: "Avatar," "Titanic," "Jurassic World," "The Avengers," and "The Dark Knight."
Are you surprised/disappointed/glad/apathetic about the PG-13 rating for "The Force Awakens"?
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Everyone has his or her holiday traditions and, from here, Thanksgiving would not be the same without "The National Dog Show Presented By Purina." It airs Thursday at noon on NBC, right after the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
John O'Hurley returns to host the 14th annual Best in Show-case, with David Frei offering analysis, and Olympians Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir as reporters. Seven new American Kennel Club breeds will be introduced on the show this year — the Bergamasco, Spanish Water Dog, Miniature American Shepherd, Lagotto Romagnolo, Berger Picard, Cirneco dell'Etna, and Boerboel.
Here are descriptions for each new breed, from a National Dog Show media release:
Bergamasco - Sheepdog whose most unique characteristic is its coat, which contains "dog hair," "goat hair" and "wool" combining to form felt-like mats. The mats grow over the course of the dog's life, reaching the ground at approximately 6 years of age.
Spanish Water Dog - A rustic, multi-purpose breed, it was developed in Spain many centuries ago for a variety of purposes including herding, hunting, water work and companionship.
Miniature American Shepherd - Small herding dog developed in the U.S. It is a highly versatile, energetic dog with superior intelligence and a willingness to please.
Lagotto Romagnolo - An ancient breed of retrieving water dogs from Italy. It is excellent at for searching for truffles, a job it performs with passion and efficiency. Powerfully built, it has a dense, curly coat of woolly texture.
Berger Picard - A medium-sized, active and athletic herding dog, it is bred to be a working companion. It has a shaggy, wiry topcoat with a short, dense undercoat.
Cirneco dell'Etna - Present in Sicily for over 2,500 years, it shares a common origin with the Pharaoh Hound. As a hunter of small mammals and fowl, it is a hardy, compact dog that was successful in hunting under adverse conditions.
Boerboel - A large dog that is strong, confident and muscular with a distinctive, blocky head. It is the most agile of the mastiff-type breeds. It serves as a capable working dog as well as a loyal companion.
The Bergamasco -- shown above in an AKC photo -- looks like one of those lovable "mop" dogs, kind of like the Puli or the Komondor. (The photo at the top is from the 2008 show, not of a new breed; that's adorable Noodles the Basset Hound, when he won the Hound Group.)
Will you be tuning in to welcome the new dogs, or cheer on some old favorites?
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