Sunday, January 31, 2016

Box Office: Why 'Finest Hours' and 'Jane Got a Gun' Fell Way Short This Weekend

The math doesn't add up.

This has been a surprisingly strong January at the box office, with Hollywood raking in more than $1 billion during a month that's traditionally a big post-holiday let-down at the multiplex. This weekend's take was 20 percent above last weekend's. So why do this weekend's four new releases seem like such box office disappointments?

Well, okay, two of them -- "Fifty Shades of Black" and "Jane Got a Gun," really are disappointments. The other two -- "Kung Fu Panda 3" and "The Finest Hours," may just be the victims of overinflated expectations. We have to keep remembering: this is still January, box office no-man's-land. Expecting too much of certain movies because other similar movies did okay at this time of year is foolish.
Really, the makers of "Panda 3" should be pretty happy with the movie's estimated $41.0 million take, even though that opening is on the lower-end of expectations. After all, it is a third installment and it comes nearly five years after the last one (an eternity for the kid-movie audience). That it did as well as it did -- debuting at No. 1, claiming the third-biggest January opening ever -- is a tribute to the strength of the franchise, the film's positive reviews, and the weakness of the competition. It's still the lowest opening of the three "Kung Fu Panda" movies, but the first two opened in the summer, not in the dead of January.

Similarly, hopes were overly high for "Finest Hours." Despite the seemingly crowd-pleasing storyline and period setting of this "Perfect Storm"-esque true story of a harrowing Coast Guard rescue at sea, "Hours" came in fourth place with $10.3 million. That total is well below expectations, and doesn't bode well for the film to recoup its estimated $70 million production budget.

So why did "Finest" sink? While Chris Pine is the lead in this ensemble, he is not a box office draw outside of playing Captain Kirk. And the actors surrounding him also lack the star wattage to put butts in seats. The movie got only middling reviews, which hurts when you're trying to attract an older audience. And the "Finest Hours" audience was definitely older, with Disney estimating that 82 percent of the viewers were over 25. It's pretty hard to generate a blockbuster without having some youth appeal.
Imitating the successes of Januaries past was also a problem for Marlon Wayans, whose horror spoof "A Haunted House" was a hit three years ago at this time. Still, despite predictions in the $10-11 million range, he couldn't duplicate that success with his latest spoof, "Fifty Shades of Black," which opened in ninth place with an estimated $6.2 million. It didn't help that Wayans was competing for the same audiences who are seeing holdovers "Ride Along 2" and "Dirty Grandpa." But what hurt the movie the most was probably its terrible reviews and weak word-of-mouth, as measured by a C grade at CinemaScore.

The saddest entry of the weekend is "Jane Got a Gun," the Natalie Portman western with a notoriously troubled production history. Portman, who co-produced and stars in the film, shepherded it through three years of cast and director changes, a distributor bankruptcy, and multiple release date delays. Still, no one thought the film would open higher than seven figures. But it didn't even reach that bar.

Despite opening on 1,210 screens, "Jane" debuted at No. 17 with just an estimated $803,000. Not that average moviegoers cared about or even knew about the movie's unfortunate backstory. But distributor The Weinstein Company, which attached trailers for "Jane" to "The Hateful Eight," should have known better than to release Portman's western so soon after Tarantino's, not to mention putting it up against the period Frontier piece "The Revenant." (Which, in its sixth weekend, still pulled in an estimated $12.4 million, good for second place.)
Plus, "Jane" is competing not just with other horse operas, but also with all the Oscar-nominated movies that are dominating the art-houses because -- all together now -- it's January. And those movies are doing reasonably well. In fact, none of the holdovers in the top 15 slots on the chart lost more than 39 percent of last week's business. The fact that there wasn't a huge East Coast blizzard or NFL playoffs this weekend certainly helped, but still, such strong legs are a sign of good health for the box office overall.

On the whole, domestic sales this January are 3 percent ahead of where they were at this time last year. We didn't have an "American Sniper" this January, but we did have "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," which more than made up for it. So, on balance, the month looks better than this weekend's new releases would suggest. Still, Hollywood will surely be happy to see January end and will cross its fingers for February's groundhogs to predict an early spring.

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Weekend Box Office: 'Kung Fu Panda 3' Wins Fight for No. 1

Kung Fu Panda 3 Opened Big With $10.5 Million
LOS ANGELES (AP) — "Kung Fu Panda 3" has kicked its way to the top of the North American box office with a respectable $41 million, according to Rentrak estimates Sunday.

The animated sequel fared much better than the weekend's other new openers, like Disney's Coast Guard adventure "The Finest Hours," which debuted in fourth place with $10.3 million.

The "Fifty Shades of Grey" parody "Fifty Shades of Black" earned around $6.2 million, but it only cost a reported $5 million to produce, while The Weinstein Company's Natalie Portman-led Western "Jane Got a Gun" misfired out of the gates, bringing in less than $1 million on a $25 million budget.

Holdovers "The Revenant" and "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" took second and third place with $12.4 million and $10.8 million, respectively.

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Saturday, January 30, 2016

Here Are the 2016 SAG Awards Winners

22nd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards - Red CarpetIt's time for the 22nd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards, where film and TV actors celebrate other film and TV actors, and the big screen winners cross their fingers that this means they'll be getting Oscars, too. Lookin' at you, Leo!

Here is the full list of SAG Awards winners from the Saturday, January 30 show (8 to 10 p.m. on TNT and TBS), along with the nominees they beat for the trophies:


Data curated by PrettyFamous

22nd Annual SAG Awards - Arrivals

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
BRYAN CRANSTON / Dalton Trumbo – "TRUMBO" (Bleecker Street)
JOHNNY DEPP / James "Whitey" Bulger – "BLACK MASS" (Warner Bros. Pictures)
LEONARDO DiCAPRIO / Hugh Glass – "THE REVENANT" (20th Century Fox)
MICHAEL FASSBENDER / Steve Jobs – "STEVE JOBS" (Universal Pictures)
EDDIE REDMAYNE / Einar Wegener/Lili Elbe – "THE DANISH GIRL" (Focus Features)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
CATE BLANCHETT / Carol Aird – "CAROL" (The Weinstein Company)
HELEN MIRREN / Maria Altmann – "WOMAN IN GOLD" (The Weinstein Company)
SAOIRSE RONAN / Eilis – "BROOKLYN" (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
SARAH SILVERMAN / Laney Brooks – "I SMILE BACK" (Broad Green Pictures)

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
CHRISTIAN BALE / Michael Burry – "THE BIG SHORT" (Paramount Pictures)
IDRIS ELBA / Commandant – "BEASTS OF NO NATION" (Netflix)
MARK RYLANCE / Abel Rudolph – "BRIDGE OF SPIES" (DreamWorks)
MICHAEL SHANNON / Rick Carver – "99 HOMES" (Broad Green Pictures)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
ROONEY MARA / Therese Belivet – "CAROL" (The Weinstein Company)
RACHEL McADAMS / Sacha Pfeiffer – "SPOTLIGHT" (Open Road Films)
HELEN MIRREN / Hedda Hopper – "TRUMBO" (Bleecker Street)
ALICIA VIKANDER / Gerda Wegener – "THE DANISH GIRL" (Focus Features)
KATE WINSLET / Joanna Hoffman – "STEVE JOBS" (Universal Pictures)

Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture

IDRIS ELBA / Commandant

THE BIG SHORT (Paramount Pictures)
CHRISTIAN BALE / Michael Burry
RYAN GOSLING / Jared Vennett
MELISSA LEO / Georgia Hale
JOHN MAGARO / Charlie Geller
BRAD PITT / Ben Rickert
RAFE SPALL / Danny Moses
JEREMY STRONG / Vinny Peters
MARISA TOMEI / Cynthia Baum
FINN WITTROCK / Jamie Shipley

SPOTLIGHT (Open Road Films)
BILLY CRUDUP / Eric MacLeish
BRIAN D'ARCY JAMES / Matty Carroll
MICHAEL KEATON / Walter "Robby" Robinson
RACHEL McADAMS / Sacha Pfeiffer
MARK RUFFALO / Michael Rezendes
JOHN SLATTERY / Ben Bradlee, Jr.
STANLEY TUCCI / Mitchell Garabedian

PAUL GIAMATTI / Jerry Heller

TRUMBO (Bleecker Street)
LOUIS C.K. / Arlen Hird
BRYAN CRANSTON / Dalton Trumbo
ELLE FANNING / Niki Trumbo
DIANE LANE / Cleo Trumbo
HELEN MIRREN / Hedda Hopper
MICHAEL STUHLBARG / Edward G. Robinson
ALAN TUDYK / Ian McLellan Hunter


Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries
IDRIS ELBA / DCI John Luther – "LUTHER" (BBC America)
BEN KINGSLEY / Grand Vizier Ay – "TUT" (Spike)
RAY LIOTTA / Lorca/Tom Mitchell – "TEXAS RISING" (History)
MARK RYLANCE / Thomas Cromwell – "WOLF HALL" (Masterpiece/PBS)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series
JON HAMM / Don Draper – "MAD MEN" (AMC)
RAMI MALEK / Elliot – "MR. ROBOT" (USA Network)
KEVIN SPACEY / Francis Underwood – "HOUSE OF CARDS" (Netflix)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series
CLAIRE DANES / Carrie Mathison – "HOMELAND" (Showtime)
MAGGIE SMITH / Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham – "DOWNTON ABBEY" (Masterpiece/PBS)
ROBIN WRIGHT / Claire Underwood – "HOUSE OF CARDS" (Netflix)

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
LOUIS C.K. / Louie – "LOUIE" (FX Networks)
WILLIAM H. MACY / Frank – "SHAMELESS" (Showtime)
JEFFREY TAMBOR / Maura Pfefferman – "TRANSPARENT" (Amazon)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series
UZO ADUBA / Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren – "ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK" (Netflix)
EDIE FALCO / Jackie Peyton – "NURSE JACKIE" (Showtime)
JULIA LOUIS-DREYFUS / President Selina Meyer – "VEEP" (HBO)

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series

HUGH BONNEVILLE / Robert, Earl of Grantham
LAURA CARMICHAEL / Lady Edith Crawley
JIM CARTER / Mr. Carson
TOM CULLEN / Anthony Gillingham
MICHELLE DOCKERY / Lady Mary Crawley
KEVIN DOYLE / Mr. Molesley
LILY JAMES / Lady Rose
ALLEN LEECH / Tom Branson
ELIZABETH McGOVERN / Cora, Countess of Grantham
LESLEY NICOL / Mrs. Patmore
JULIAN OVENDEN / Charles Blake
DAVID ROBB / Dr. Clarkson
MAGGIE SMITH / Violet, Dowager Countess of Grantham
PENELOPE WILTON / Isobel Crawley

ALFIE ALLEN / Theon Greyjoy
IAN BEATTIE / Ser Meryn Trant
JOHN BRADLEY / Samwell Tarly
EMILIA CLARKE / Daenerys Targaryen
BEN CROMPTON / Dolorous Edd
LIAM CUNNINGHAM / Ser Davos Seaworth
STEPHEN DILLANE / Stannis Baratheon
PETER DINKLAGE / Tyrion Lannister
TARA FITZGERALD / Selyse Baratheon
BRIAN FORTUNE / Othell Yarwyck
JOEL FRY / Hizdahr Zo Loraq
AIDAN GILLEN / Littlefinger Petyr Baelish
IAIN GLEN / Ser Jorah Mormont
LENA HEADEY / Cersei Lannister
MICHIEL HUISMAN / Daario Naharis
DANIEL PORTMAN / Podrick Payne
IWAN RHEON / Ramsay Snow
OWEN TEALE / Ser Alliser Thorne
TOM WLASCHIHA / Jaqen H'ghar

HOMELAND (Showtime)
CLAIRE DANES / Carrie Mathison
NINA HOSS / Astrid
MARK IVANIR / Ivan Krupin
MIRANDA OTTO / Allison Carr
MANDY PATINKIN / Saul Berenson

DEREK CECIL / Seth Grayson
NATHAN DARROW / Edward Meechum
MICHAEL KELLY / Doug Stamper
MOLLY PARKER / Jackie Sharp
KEVIN SPACEY / Francis Underwood
ROBIN WRIGHT / Claire Underwood

SOLA BAMIS / Shirley
JAY R. FERGUSON / Stan Rizzo
BRUCE GREENWOOD / Richard Burghoff
JON HAMM / Don Draper
JANUARY JONES / Betty Francis
KEVIN RAHM / Ted Chaough
JOHN SLATTERY / Roger Sterling
RICH SOMMER / Harry Crane
AARON STATON / Ken Cosgrove

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series

MAYIM BIALIK / Amy Farrah Fowler
JOHNNY GALECKI / Leonard Hofstadter
SIMON HELBERG / Howard Wolowitz
KUNAL NAYYAR / Rajesh Koothrappali
JIM PARSONS / Sheldon Cooper
MELISSA RAUCH / Bernadette Rostenkowski-Wolowitz

KEY & PEELE (Comedy Central)
KEEGAN-MICHAEL KEY / Various Characters
JORDAN PEELE / Various Characters

JULIE BOWEN / Claire Dunphy
TY BURRELL / Phil Dunphy
AUBREY ANDERSON EMMONS / Lily Tucker-Pritchett
JESSE TYLER FERGUSON / Mitchell Pritchett
NOLAN GOULD / Luke Dunphy
SARAH HYLAND / Haley Dunphy
ED O'NEILL / Jay Pritchett
RICO RODRIGUEZ / Manny Delgado
SOFIA VERGARA / Gloria Delgado-Pritchett
ARIEL WINTER / Alex Dunphy

UZO ADUBA / Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren
MIKE BIRBIGLIA / Danny Pearson
DANIELLE BROOKS / Tasha "Taystee" Jefferson
LAVERNE COX / Sophia Burset
JACKIE CRUZ / Marisol "Flaca" Gonzales
LEA DELARIA / Carrie "Big Boo" Black
BETH FOWLER / Sister Jane Ingalls
ANNIE GOLDEN / Norma Romano
DIANE GUERRERO / Maritza Ramos
VICKY JEUDY / Janae Watson
SELENIS LEYVA / Gloria Mendoza
TARYN MANNING / Tiffany "Pennsatucky" Doggett
KATE MULGREW / Galina "Red" Reznikov
EMMA MYLES / Leanne Taylor
MATT PETERS / Joel Luschek
LORI PETTY / Lolly Whitehill
DASCHA POLANCO / Dayanara Diaz
RUBY ROSE / Stella Carlin
NICK SANDOW / Joe Caputo
YAEL STONE / Lorna Morello
SAMIRA WILEY / Poussey Washington

JAY DUPLASS / Josh Pfefferman
KATHRYN HAHN / Raquel Fein
GABY HOFFMANN / Ali Pfefferman
CHERRY JONES / Leslie Mackinaw
AMY LANDECKER / Sarah Pfefferman
JUDITH LIGHT / Shelly Pfefferman
HARI NEF / Gittel/Gerson
EMILY ROBINSON / Rose Boymelgreen
JEFFREY TAMBOR / Maura Pfefferman

DIEDRICH BADER / Bill Ericsson
ANNA CHLUMSKY / Amy Brookheimer
GARY COLE / Kent Davidson
KEVIN DUNN / Ben Cafferty
TONY HALE / Gary Walsh
MATT WALSH / Mike McLintock


Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture
"EVEREST" (Universal Pictures)
"FURIOUS 7" (Universal Pictures)
"JURASSIC WORLD" (Universal Pictures)
"MAD MAX: FURY ROAD" (Warner Bros. Pictures)

Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Comedy or Drama Series
"HOMELAND" (Showtime)

52nd Annual SAG Life Achievement Award

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9 Perfect Olivia Pope Quotes for When You've Got It Handled

If there's one thing Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington) does better than drinking wine or crying over President Fitz, it is getting sh-t done. She's the resident lady boss on "Scandal," and for good reason.

So when you need to channel you're inner Olivia Pope, we've got some go-to quotes for you.

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Quiz: Which 'Grease' Character Are You?

Are you a beauty school dropout or the leader of the greasers? Find out which Rydell High teen you're the most like with this "Grease" personality quiz.

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Friday, January 29, 2016

It's Official: 'Gilmore Girls' Revival Is Coming to Netflix This Year

Oscars 2016: Can 'The Big Short' Upset 'The Revenant' for Best Picture?

At last, an Oscar shocker that has nothing to do with the racial makeup of the nominees.

This particular shocker happened outside of the televised media spotlight, but it could still change the direction of the Oscar race. It happened over the weekend at the Producers Guild Awards, when the Guild's top prize went to... "The Big Short."

Not "Spotlight," the movie about real-life crusading journalists that was long considered the Best Picture frontrunner. Not "The Revenant," the blockbuster Leonardo DiCaprio survival epic that's been the favorite for the last few weeks. No, it went to a comedy-drama from the guy who made "Anchorman," about a real-life financial crisis whose origins were so complicated that even a clever script and a cast of A-list actors in bad wigs could explain only a fraction of them.

Did anyone see that coming?
Well, maybe. The movie did win a number of Critics Choice Awards earlier this month. The Broadcast Film Critics Association gave "Big Short" Best Comedy, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Actor in a Comedy (for Christian Bale, who's up for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role). To the extent that the BFCA reflects conventional wisdom in Hollywood, that support meant a lot, even though the group ultimately gave Best Picture and Best Acting Ensemble to "Spotlight."

Still, the PGA award is a game-changer. In the nine years since the Producers Guild adopted a proportional voting system much like the one used by the Academy, the PGA winner has gone on to win the Best Picture Oscar every year. (Well, almost; two years ago, "12 Years a Slave" tied with "Gravity" at the PGA, while the Academy gave the prize only to "12 Years.")

The prizes "Short" is nominated for are all considered important precursors to a Best Picture win. And while McKay may be best known for unleashing some of Will Ferrell's most manic performances, he's earned a lot of praise for his "Short" screenplay (co-written with Charles Randolph) that not only explains the 2008 financial crisis but does so in an entertaining and even funny way.
The Academy does like movies that address serious topics of historical importance. It likes them even more when they're hits, and to date, "Short" has racked up a respectable $57.5 million. (That's less than half of what "Revenant" [above] has earned, but it's still about double the earnings of fellow nominees "Spotlight" and "Brooklyn," and eight times the earnings of "Room.")

The next big test of "Short" support will come this Saturday at the Screen Actors Guild awards. There, it's nominated for Supporting Actor (for Bale) and for the top prize, Best Ensemble, against "Spotlight" and three films that didn't make the Oscar cut: "Trumbo," "Straight Outta Compton," and "Beasts of No Nation."

The SAG awards are considered important because there's some overlap with the actors' branch of the Academy, the single biggest bloc of professionals voting for the Oscars. While Sylvester Stallone is favored to win the Supporting Actor Oscar, perhaps for sentimental reasons, for his artistic comeback role in "Creed," there's a school of thought that favors Bale. Why? Of the five nominees for Supporting Actor at SAG, only Bale and "Room" co-star Jacob Tremblay appeared in films whose distributors managed to get screener DVDs to SAG voters in a timely manner.

So "Short" and "Room" are the two candidates SAG voters are most likely to have seen, and rather than give the prize to a little boy whose performance might be a fluke, they'll give it to the veteran A-lister and previous Oscar-winner. That Bale momentum could carry forward to the Oscars.
Still, when the (blue) chips are down, is "The Big Short" really the kind of movie that the Academy wants to elevate above all others? After all, "Spotlight" is about heroic reporters taking on a powerful institution and uncovering terrible crimes. "Revenant," "The Martian," and "Room" are all about people surviving horrific situations against long odds. "Mad Max" (pictured above) and "Bridge of Spies" are about selfless men who fight for justice and civility in worlds that tend toward violence and suspicion. "Short," however, is about some rich white guys who predict an economic collapse that will bring misery to millions... and profit handsomely from their foresight.

Then again, last year's top picks, including winner "Birdman" and also-rans "Boyhood" and "The Grand Budapest Hotel," weren't about heroism, social issues, or historical events either. The two nominees that did fit the traditional Best Picture profile, "American Sniper" and "Selma," didn't stand a chance. If "Big Short" does follow the PGA precedent to take the Academy's top prize, it'll be another sign that the Oscars are becoming more about the merits of individual movies than about sending a political message -- or presenting a particular image of what an Academy honoree should look like.

Of course, the fact that this trend comes at a time when the Academy is desperate to present a more inclusive image means that even the effort to be apolitical is itself political.

But then, that's the kind of absurd paradox that "The Big Short" revels in. Maybe it really is the most apt movie of our time.

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Tom Hanks Is America's Favorite Movie Star

EE British Academy Film Awards 2014 - Red Carpet ArrivalsTom Hanks may have missed out on an Oscar nomination this year, but here's some consolation news: He's America's favorite movie star.

That's according to The Harris Poll, which revealed the 59-year-old "Bridge of Spies" actor topped the list after surveying more than 2,200 adults across the country. He rose from his previous position, No. 5.

Also rising in the ranks: Johnny Depp, who nabbed the No. 2 spot, despite being snubbed for his performance as Whitey Bulger in "Black Mass."

The rest of the top five was rounded out by Denzel Washington (last year's No. 1), John Wayne, and Harrison Ford. Sandra Bullock and Jennifer Lawrence were the top two female movie stars at No. 6 and 7, respectively.

Hanks will get a good chance to defend his spot this year, as he's next starring as heroic pilot Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger in a biopic directed by Clinton Eastwood.

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Olivia Munn, Jason Segel to Host Sci-Tech Oscars

2015 Film Independent Spirit Awards - ArrivalsOlivia Munn and Jason Segel will team up to host this year's Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation.

The "Ride Along 2" actress and "End of the Tour" actor will give out 11 awards to 33 recipients on on Saturday, January 13 at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills.

"The Sci-Tech Awards Presentation is one of our special events during Oscar season, and we're thrilled to have Olivia and Jason as this year's hosts," said Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs in a statement. "Their humor and charm will be terrific complements to the brilliance of our colleagues and their outstanding scientific and technical achievements."

The Sci-Tech Oscars reward innovations and discoveries that make significant and lasting impacts on motion pictures. This year, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers will be honored.

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There's a 'Deadpool' Director's Cut That's 'Even More Raw'

"Deadpool" has already landed itself an R rating from the MPAA, and has been banned in China for its graphic violence and nudity. But why stop there? According to one of the film's stars, there's also a director's cut of the flick, and it's even raunchier than what will be seen on the big screen next month.

That intel comes courtesy of actor T.J. Miller, who was chatting with fans alongside titular star Ryan Reynolds following a fan screening of "Deadpool" in London this week. During the Q&A session, Miller confirmed that director Tim Miller also had an unrated version of the controversial flick up his sleeve, presumably waiting for fans on home video. "When you see the full director's cut of it, that's gonna be even more raw," T.J. Miller promised fans at the screening. "It's pretty heavy duty."

It's interesting that the director wants to push the envelope even further, considering he was given pretty much endless freedom to depict all the sex and violence he wanted from the beginning (producers promised the flick would earn an R long before it went before the MPAA). But apparently, Tim Miller's vision for this "X-Men" spinoff really verged on the X-rated at times. Thankfully, if you're into that sort of thing, you can check it out on Blu-ray and DVD in a few months.

In the meantime, the much more tame, R-rated "Deadpool" is due in theaters on February 12.

[via: @jamesfromessex, h/t Screen Crush]

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Kim Basinger Joins 'Fifty Shades Darker' As Christian Grey's Ex

"Black November" New York City PremiereThe "Fifty Shades of Grey" sequel just got a major dose of star power: Oscar winner Kim Basinger has reportedly joined the flick in a steamy new role.

According to Variety, Basinger is poised to join the cast of "Fifty Shades Darker," where she will play the high-profile role of Elena Lincoln, Christian Grey's business partner -- who also happens to be his former flame, too. Basinger's character, who was briefly referenced in the first flick, is due for a major reveal in the follow-up, per Variety.

The sequel and the third installment in the trilogy, "Fifty Shades Freed," are set to shoot back-to-back beginning this spring. Director James Foley is taking the reins from previous helmer Sam Taylor-Johnson, who departed the franchise after reportedly clashing with E.L. James, the author behind the bestselling "Fifty Shades" book series. James's husband, Niall Leonard, is serving as screenwriter this time around.

Stars Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan are set to reprise their lead roles as Ana and Christian. Other returning cast members include Luke Grimes, Eloise Mumford, and Max Martini.

"Fifty Shades Darker" is due for release on February 10, 2017.

[via: Variety]

Photo credit: Dario Cantatore via Getty Images

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Netflix Exec May Have Confirmed the 'Gilmore Girls' Revival

New Warner Bros. TV StillsThere's been lots of talk over the past few months about the rumored "Gilmore Girls" revival allegedly happening at Netflix, though of course, no one involved with the show or the streaming service has said anything on the record yet. Still, there have been lots of clues floating around that point to this project totally happening, and the latest may have come from none other than a Netflix exec -- as official as it gets.

Netflix's chief content officer, Ted Sarandos, recently sat down for a long interview with HitFix critic Alan Sepinwall, where they chatted about what makes the streaming service tick. In addition to some insider-y details about how certain shows get greenlit (the success of Aziz Ansari's standup specials on Netflix made "Master of None" a no-brainer, for instance), Sarandos also talked briefly about the logic behind picking up shows that have been canceled by the traditional networks (or in the case of "Arrested Development" and "Full House," making new seasons/spinoffs of long-canceled shows).

Sarandos doesn't mention "Gilmore Girls" at all until the very end of the interview, when Sepinwall asks him whether or not he'd consider reviving a show that Netflix didn't already have the streaming rights to, using "Community" -- ripe for rescuing after getting cancelled by NBC, but streaming exclusively on rival Hulu -- as an example. Sarandos agreed that that wouldn't be in Netflix's best interest, and then made the slip-up of throwing out "Gilmore Girls" as an example of something the service does have sole possession of -- and perhaps is reviving at this very moment?

Here's the relevant exchange:

HitFix: Could you ever see yourself doing a revival of a show where you don't have the catalog rights? When NBC canceled "Community," you weren't going to pick it up, because it was streaming on Hulu.

Ted Sarandos: Yeah, it's unlikely, because it's such a weird experience to send our members somewhere else to watch something, or to get into the groove of a show. "Gilmore Girls" —I'm trying to think of the shows where people really love them and put them on Netflix that's really the thing that helps us.

Like, we didn't have much insight into how much people love "Community" outside of the Nielsen rating, which are not very dependable.

Does that mean that Netflix saw how much people loved "GG," and used that to influence its decision to bring it back? It certainly seems like that's what Sarandos was indicating, though it looks like he caught himself as soon as he mentioned the show by name, and stopped short of confirming the revival altogether.

Still, his words certainly strongly indicate that this project is happening, and from the set photos we've seen so far, it could be shooting right at this very second. Sarandos also acknowledged in his interview with Sepinwall that the streaming service usually waits a while before announcing its original series, and it appears that that will be the case here as well. But we're more encouraged than ever.

Stay tuned.

[via: HitFix]

Photo credit: Getty Images

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The 27 Best '90s Action Movies Ever Made, Ranked

The T-1000. "Face/Off" surgery. "Bullet Time."

These are just some of the many blessed things to come out of '90s action cinema. This decade had everything: From Michael Bay to John Woo, from "Speed" to "The Matrix." And explosions. Lots of glorious, fireball-y goodness.

In honor of the greatest genre in the history of human events, here are the 27 best '90s action movies ever made. How did we rank these uh-mah-zing films? Our criteria includes overall story quality, legacy, influence on the genre, level of action-ocity (that's a technical term) and, of course, editor's choice.

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David Schwimmer Says the 'Friends' Reunion Was 'Lovely'

Cast Members Of NBC's Comedy Series Friends Pictured (L) To R : David Schwimmer As RossAudiences only have to wait a few more weeks before they can watch the "Friends" cast reunion for themselves, and according to one star, the event was as wonderful as you're imagining.

David Schwimmer spoke to Entertainment Tonight about the gathering, which took place last week at a ceremony saluting legendary television director James Burrows, and featured the casts of several shows Burrows shepherded, including "The Big Bang Theory," "Frasier," and "Will & Grace." The event was taped, and will air on NBC next month.

According to Schwimmer, the experience of reuniting with almost the entire "Friends" crew (minus Matthew Perry, who's in London rehearsing for a play) couldn't have been better, and Schwimmer, Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, and Matt LeBlanc were all thrilled to be there for Burrows.

"It was just lovely to be in the same room and to honor Jimmy, who we all really love," Schwimmer told ET. "He is a prolific director and he really, really helped forge the cast as an ensemble, and really clarified all those relationships from the get go. So it was lovely to be there."

Burrows has directed 1,000 episodes of television since his career began back in the 1970s, including stints on classic sitcoms such as "Taxi," "Cheers," "The Mary Tyler Moore Show," "The Bob Newhart Show," and "Laverne & Shirley." He helmed the "Friends" pilot, as well as many more episodes throughout the show's first few seasons, including the infamous "The One Where Ross and Rachel Take a Break."

"Must See TV: A Tribute to James Burrows" premieres on NBC on February 21.

[via: Entertainment Tonight]

Photo credit: Getty Images

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16 Times Fez Was the Funniest Part of 'That '70s Show'

Everyone should have a Fez in their friend group. We may never know which country the "That '70's Show" foreign exchange student hails from, but we do know he's sassy, flirty, and he always tells it like it is. The candy-loving wannabe ladies man can get a little inappropriate (remember, he has "needs"), but he certainly possesses his fair share of quirky charm. Maybe it's the accent? Here are 16 times Wilmer Valderrama's legendary Fez cast his hilariously cheeky spell over "That '70s Show."

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Thursday, January 28, 2016

Academy Announces Diverse First Slate of Oscars Presenters, Performers

Pharrell Visits "The Elvis Duran Z100 Morning Show"It looks like the Academy is trying to make amends for the #OscarsSoWhite backlash, with its announcement of a diverse first slate of presenters and performers for next month's Oscars ceremony.

The list was revealed in alphabetical order and without designating exactly who's performing and who's presenting, though it appears that the performers will most likely be nominees Lady Gaga (up for Best Original Song for "Til It Happens to You" from "The Hunting Ground"), The Weeknd ("Fifty Shades of Grey" tune "Earned It"), and Sam Smith ("Spectre" theme "The Writing's On the Wall").

Presenters will include past Oscar winners Benicio Del Toro, Whoopi Goldberg, and Charlize Theron, as well as Tina Fey, Ryan Gosling (a 2007 nominee for "Half Nelson"), Kevin Hart, Jacob Tremblay, and Pharrell Williams (a nominee and performer in 2014 for "Despicable Me 2"'s ubiquitous "Happy"). Many more names are expected where those came from.

The Academy has pledged to increase diversity among its ranks by doubling its number of women and minority members by 2020. It appears that inviting a more diverse slate of presenters to this year's ceremony is also part of its inclusiveness plan.

The Oscars, hosted by Chris Rock (who's likely to address the controversy head-on), will take place on Sunday, February 28 on ABC.

[via: The Academy]

Photo credit: Getty Images

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Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard 'Honor Toto' in 'Africa' Music Video

kristen bell, dax shepard, africa, totoKristen Bell and Dax Shepard have once again proven that they're one of the cutest celeb couples ever with a new music video they made in celebration of '80s band Toto and their tune "Africa." Oh yeah, and they actually shot it in Africa.

Bell shared the video on social media this week, telling followers that she and Shepard made the clip because "nobody really wants to see the album of your vacation photos." According to the couple, the video was shot on their last vacation before the birth of their first daughter, Lincoln, in 2013.

"Our sole objective was to rage hard and honor Toto properly," the couple wrote on YouTube.

Based on the final product, we have to say they succeeded. The goofy clip is interspersed with lots of gorgeous shots of scenery and wildlife from their trip, including close encounters with hippos, lions, giraffes, zebras, and gorillas, among other beasts. The couple also cameo, lip-syncing to the song and dancing their hearts out -- and yes, there's plenty of rain, which they (appropriately) bless.

According to SFGate, Shepard and Bell were actually fined while filming the clip back in 2012, since they apparently were dancing with animals where they shouldn't have been.

"We wanted to see the wildebeest migrate so we had driven five hours in the car, we finally got to them on the Serengeti, we got out of the car (and) we started doing a dance for this music video," Shepard explained at the time. "We weren't paying attention and then the Serengeti police showed up and they fined us $50 for dancing at the Serengeti."

Luckily, they were able to keep the footage, and the rest is history. Check out the fun, goofy video above, and plan on having "Africa" stuck in your head for the rest of the day.

[via: Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard, SFGate]

Photo credit: YouTube

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Leonardo DiCaprio Met Pope Francis to Discuss Climate Change

The Revenant Press Conference in MexicoLeonardo DiCaprio just took Oscar campaigning to a whole -- and holy -- new level: The "Revenant" star had an audience with Pope Francis at the Vatican on Thursday morning.

Okay, Leo didn't go solely in support of his recent push for a little gold guy. Instead, he met with His Holiness to discuss climate change, and brought along his father, George DiCaprio, and the fundraising chairman of his namesake foundation, Milutin Gatsby. Still, you don't see any other Oscar nominees visiting the Vatican this awards season.

According to E!, DiCaprio is a longtime admirer of the pope and his support of environmental causes. During DiCaprio's private 15-minute meeting with the pontiff, the pair "discussed Leonardo's charitable foundation and how they can work together on climate change."

The actor greeted the pope by kissing his ring, and saying in Italian, "Your Holiness, thank you for granting me this private audience with you." The pair also exchanged gifts, with DiCaprio presenting the pontiff with a book of paintings by 15th century Dutch artist Hieronymus Bosch, whose work "Garden of Earthly Delights" hung above DiCaprio's crib when the actor was a baby.

DiCaprio tied the triptych to the environment, telling Pope Francis of the painting, "As a child I didn't quite understand what it all meant, but through my child's eyes it represented a planet, the utopia we had been given. And [in] the third panel, we see a blackened sky that represents so much to me of what's going on in the environment today."

In addition to the book, the actor also presented Francis with a check from his foundation, which he asked the pope to give to a charity "close to your heart." Pope Francis gave DiCaprio a leatherbound copy of his 2015 statement on the environmental crisis, "Laudato Si," as well as his 2013 work, "Evangelii Gaudium."

[via: E! News]

Photo credit: LatinContent/Getty Images

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'Back to the Future' Fans, Rejoice! The DeLorean Is Going Back Into Production

Back To The Future 30th Anniversary CelebrationIf you're a diehard "Back to the Future" fan with money to burn, we've got some great news: The DeLorean is going back into production for the first time in more than 30 years.

Stephen Wynne, CEO of the DeLorean Motor Company, announced the plans this week in an interview with the Houston NBC affiliate, near the company's Humble, Texas headquarters. The car, which became famous thanks to its role as the time machine in the "Back to the Future" series, was once synonymous with '80s opulence. But the company went bankrupt in 1982, and since the late '80s has operated purely as a repair and refurbishment outlet, restoring existing models of the vehicle.

The company had been unable to produce new versions of the kitschy car because the design rights were owned by the estate of the vehicle's namesake, the late John DeLorean, and not the company itself. Now, Wynne says, they have the official greenlight to start new production, the first time the car will be manufactured on American soil.

Wynne estimates that the company has enough existing parts to make about 300 new cars, which will be replicas of the 1982 model DeLoreans. Refurbished models retail for between $45,000 and $55,000; the new models are expected to run significantly higher, though Wynne hopes to sell them for less than $100,000.

The first new DeLorean is expected to roll off the line in early 2017. We can't wait for the future.

[via: NBC Houston, CNBC]

Photo credit: Getty Images for Universal Pictures Home Entertainment

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Tyra Banks Welcomes Baby Boy Via Gestational Surrogate

'Conan' Shows How No Animals Were Harmed in 'The Revenant'

"The Revenant" is up for 12 Academy Awards this year, with Leonardo DiCaprio considered *thisclose* to a lock for Best Actor. Conan O'Brien addressed the film in his "Conan" monologue, and mentioned the "pretty intense scenes with animals, particularly bears and horses." He added, "A lot of animal rights groups would normally be concerned about this, but the director went pretty far out of his way to show that no animals were harmed during the making of 'The Revenant.' You can tell when you watch the movie."

He then posted a clip from the movie, which includes a shot you probably don't recall seeing in the theater, where a horse that looks like it's about to fall off a cliff magically flies away, then tells the audience, "See? I'm fine, everybody! I die peacefully in my sleep eight years from now. So long!"

Here's the clip:

It is kind of funny that audiences are much, much more concerned about what happens to film animals than their human counterparts. Maybe it's easier to imagine it's real when it happens to an animal, whereas we know Leo is alive and well and probably romancing a new supermodel as you read this.

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Jesse Owens Has Nazis on the Run in This Exclusive 'Race' Trailer

As Jesse Owens puts it in this exclusive new trailer for the biopic "Race," "On that track, there ain't no black and white, there's only fast and slow." Jesse was fast. In the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, he was faster than anyone, winning four gold track-and-field medals. Guess who was slow? It's you, Hitler. It's YOU!

Hitler didn't actually run in those games himself, but the Germany-set stage was his big opportunity to show off the superiority of the Aryan race. That did not work out, thanks in large part to an American hero who happened to be black.

"Race" stars Stephan James ("Selma") as Jesse Owens, with Jason Sudeikis, Jeremy Irons, Carice van Houten, William Hurt, and Shanice Banton in supporting roles. If you weren't already aware of the historical context, this trailer starts with a documentary-feel to put you in the moment, then confronts the realities of race and racing head-on. The trailer is inspiring enough to make you proud, but it also serves as a reminder that this powerful moral victory against the racist Nazis came at the hands of a guy who faced discrimination by his own fellow Americans for the same reason of race.

Focus Features is releasing "Race" on February 19th.Want more stuff like this? Like us on Facebook.

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Watch Alison Brie Sell Jimmy Kimmel 400 Boxes of Girl Scout Cookies

'Tis the season for your kids, and your neighbor's kids, and your co-worker's kids, to ask you to sign your life savings away to buy cookies so addictive they should be kept behind a pharmacist's counter. Everyone seems to be selling Girl Scout cookies right about now, even Alison Brie. The star of the new movie "How to Be Single" was a guest on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" Wednesday night, and she showed up a bit early to pressure Jimmy into buying cookies.

Alison: "All the talk show hosts are buying them. Ellen bought 400 boxes."

Jimmy pointed out that Alison (age 33) is a bit old to be in the Girl Scouts. She said it's for her kids, then trotted out two "daughters" she claimed were her own, even though one of them is male and Alison doesn't actually have any children.

Eventually, Alison told Jimmy to stop f--king around and just buy the damn cookies. Not wanting to be outdone by Ellen, Jimmy signed up for 400 boxes (which is $2,000?!) and made Guillermo pay for them. (The best part of the video is Guillermo muttering "sonofab-tch" under his breath.) You're not supposed to pay until the cookies arrive, though, so clearly Alison is running a talk show scam. She should keep all the cookies for herself -- especially any Thin Mints. Dang, those things are good.

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The Most Unforgettable 'Friends' Love Interests, Ranked From Worst to Best

It's no surprise that, during its 10-season run, "Friends" had (nearly) countless love interests. Some of them were awesome, while others... well, they pretty much sucked -- and they can make re-watching classic episodes feel like you're entering the seventh level of hell.

Here, then, is our ranking of the most memorable "Friends" love interests, all the way from "ugh" to "he's her lobster."

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'Trolls' Movie Teaser Trailer: Watch Them Whip, Nae Nae ... and Get Eaten

No childhood is safe! And no toy is safe from being gobbled up, even in its own movie. Earlier this week, a new "Angry Birds Movie" trailer came out, and now we have an official international teaser trailer for the "Trolls" movie coming later this year.

The trailer is ... interesting, starting with what sounds like a serious political speech to the masses:

"Here, right here, this is where we rebuild our civilization. It has everything we need: Fresh air, clean water ... and sweet acoustics!"

Then we see animated trolls dancing to "Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)," which immediately feels dated. But maybe that's appropriate for a movie about troll dolls.

Voice-over: "Meet the trolls! They sing, they dance and have lots of fun. But these creatures aren't just delightful ..."

At that, we see a giant hand reach down to pluck one of them.

Voice-over: "...they're delicious." Gulp. That escalated quickly.

The teaser doesn't tell us much about the plot, but it does mention it's from the creators of "Shrek," and features Anna Kendrick and Justin Timberlake. Many trailer viewers picked up a "Smurfs" movie vibe, for better or worse. So if you have kids who like the "Smurfs" movies, they may love this.

Here's the synopsis:

"DreamWorks' TROLLS is a hair-raising comedy filled with unbelievable adventure and incredible music. Known for their crazy, colourful, and magical hair, Trolls are the happiest, most joyous creatures ever to burst into song. But their world of rainbows and cupcakes is changed forever, when their leader Poppy (Anna Kendrick,) must embark on a rescue mission that takes her far beyond the only world she's ever known."

"Trolls" is currently scheduled for release on November 4, 2016.

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The 12 Best Animated Movie Sequels Ever Made

You know what's weird about sequels to animated features? There aren't that many of them.

Maybe that's because kids are happy enough to watch "Frozen" for the 487th time that they don't really need a sequel. Nonetheless, we'll be getting a whole bunch of them this year, including "Finding Dory" and this week's "Kung Fu Panda 3" (opening Jan. 29).

And that's not necessarily a bad thing. Some animated sequels have actually been very good, amplifying the original story and finding new depth in the characters, in ways fans might not have imagined. Here are 12 of the best Toons Part II (and beyond).

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Dominic Monaghan on David Bowie's 'Lord of the Rings' Audition, LOTR Reunions

No disrespect to the great Hugo Weaving, but David Bowie would've been an awesome Elrond. Bowie was already the Goblin King in "Labyrinth," and would've fit right into the world of "The Lord of the Rings." But, in one of Hollywood's many "what ifs," he wasn't cast in the franchise at all.

Dominic Monaghan, who played Merry, is now promoting Season 3 of his Travel Channel show, "Wild Things With Dominic Monaghan," and he talked to the Huffington Post about Bowie's LOTR audition:

"I was at the Hubbard's, which is a pretty notorious casting agency office in London, doing an audition for 'Lord of the Rings,' and when it ended I went over and talked to John Hubbard, who was running the audition, and he said, 'Hey, it went really well. You should wait around for 5 or 10 mins. We'll give you some feedback.' I thought, 'Oh, OK, cool, and I sat in the reception office. As I was reading a magazine waiting, David Bowie came in and signed his little list and went in. And I'm assuming he read for Gandalf. I can't think of anything else he would've read for. He may have read for something else, but I'm a huge David Bowie fan, and I was lucky enough to know his son now so just seeing him in person was pretty special to me."

According to HuffPost, online rumors suggested Bowie was gunning for Elrond, not Ian McKellen's Gandalf, but either way. You never know who's going to walk into a casting agency!

Speaking of LOTR, though, Dom was asked about any future cast reunions on "Wild Things." Billy Boyd, who played Merry's Hobbit BFF Pippin, was on the show, and HuffPost asked if any other "Lord of the Rings" reunions might be coming up. Here's how Dom answered:

"I've been chatting to Elijah [Wood] and Viggo [Mortensen] recently about whether they'd come with me for an episode for Season 4. I'm still very close with all those guys, Orlando [Bloom] and Sean Bean. Elijah and Viggo jump out for me a little more just because I've had more history with those guys, and they seem more inclined to get their hands dirty. [...] So that's something that could very easily happen in the future."

Sounds good, but what are you saying there, man? Orlando Bloom and Sean Bean don't like to get their tea-pouring hands dirty?

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Megan Mullally Describes the 'Panic' Over Her New Character's Swastika Tattoo

Megan Mullally is one of the stars of NBC's new comedy "You, Me and the Apocalypse," but even Karen Walker of "Will & Grace" might need a minute to recognize her. In the new series, which starts tonight (January 28), Megan plays a white supremacist named Leanne, whom Jenna Fischer's wrongfully imprisoned character Rhonda meets in a New Mexico prison; the two then meet other characters and try to wait out the oncoming apocalypse together.

It won't take long for viewers to see that Leanne is a white supremacist, since she has a swastika tattooed right on her forehead. In an interview with TV Guide, Megan said everyone was "freaking out" about the tattoo. "I don't want to in any way give the impression I think that's OK. We were all in a panic like, 'We've got to cover it up! We've got to cover it!' I'm like 'How? What am I covering it with? I'm in a prison cell, would I wear a blanket on my head?'"

She said there wasn't much they could do about it, until later episodes when you'll notice Leanne suddenly has a hat that comes out of nowhere. "The good news about the character," Megan added, "is that she ultimately will learn that's not maybe the greatest approach to life, but it's going to take a while."

"You, Me and the Apocalypse" -- which also stars Rob Lowe as a priest -- premieres Thursday, January 28 at 8 p.m. on NBC.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Jeffrey Dean Morgan Calls His 'Walking Dead' Character the 'Biggest A-- in the World'

2015 Toronto International Film Festival - "Desierto" PremiereFans of "The Walking Dead" may be excited about Jeffrey Dean Morgan playing uber-villain Negan on the zombie drama, but there's one person who isn't thrilled — his mother!

As Morgan told Seth Meyers on "Late Night," his mom is a teensy bit annoyed that his new role could affect the one he had on "The Good Wife," as an investigator and possible love interest for Julianna Margulies. "When I took the show, she was like, 'What does this mean with 'The Good Wife?' She was devastated that this could be the end. I was like, 'Mom, keep your pants on.'"
On "The Good Wife," Morgan's character was a (mostly reformed) bad boy with a soft side for Alicia Florrick. That doesn't even come close to describing the evil guy he'll play on "The Walking Dead."

Negan is "a game-changer. It's a complete 180 from what I'm doing on 'The Good Wife,' which for an actor is a dream come true," he said. "I get to be the biggest a-- in the world."

Guess Rick Grimes is getting some competition for that title!

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'Carol,' 'Transparent' Lead 2016 GLAAD Media Award Nominations

GLAAD announced the nominations for its annual awards, and the organization announced that for the first time, more than 50 percent of its English-language nominees are trans-inclusive.

The GLAAD Media Awards honor "fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and the issues that affect their lives."

On the movie side, acclaimed films "Carol" and "The Danish Girl" led the pack. On the TV side, the Emmy-winning "Transparent" continued to bask in awards love.

Here is the list of 2016 GLAAD nominees:

Outstanding Film — Wide Release
The Danish Girl

Outstanding Film — Limited Release
52 Tuesdays
Appropriate Behavior
Boy Meets Girl
Drunktown's Finest

Outstanding Comedy Series
Brooklyn 99
Faking It
Grace and Frankie
Master of None
Modern Family
Orange Is the New Black
Please Like Me

Outstanding Drama Series
Black Sails
The Fosters
Grey's Anatomy
How to Get Away With Murder
Orphan Black

Outstanding Individual Episode (in a Series Without an LGBT Character)
"Gender," The Carmichael Show
"Please Don't Ask, Please Don't Tell," Black-ish
"The Prince of Nucleotides," Royal Pains
"Rock-a-Bye-Baby," NCIS: New Orleans
"We Build, We Fight," NCIS

Outstanding TV Movie or Limited Series

Outstanding Documentary
Kumu Hina
Limited Partnership
Mala Mala
Tab Hunter Confidential

Outstanding Reality Program
I Am Cait
I Am Jazz
New Girls on the Block
The Prancing Elites

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Watch Lauren Cohan Destroy Jack Black in Wild Game of 'Name That Thing'

You'd think Jack Black would recognize a sitar, but apparently they skipped that in "School of Rock." The "Kung Fu Panda 3" star joined "The Walking Dead" star Lauren Cohan on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" Tuesday night, and they played a little game called "Name That Thing." The two stars were shown some kind of ... thing ... and had to write down its exact title.

It's harder than it sounds! And it did not go well, especially for Jack.

Here's the game:

Maggie slays, once again! Glenn would be proud.

That said, Lauren got a gift with those 10 points for "small fruit." And did anyone really know "auger"? But shame on Jack for writing "Djiree Don't" instead of "sitar." Lauren went one better and even wrote "Ravi Shakar's sitar," even though it wasn't Ravi Shakar's. And she is now, officially, The Queen of Soups. Jack, on the other hand, tried to sell Jimmy on "Pee" soup. Thankfully, he crossed off "Poop" soup, but you know someone out there has tried that.

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Josh Brolin Uses Kleenex Box for Hilariously Wrong Kim Kardashian Impression

Oh, Josh Brolin. He had an interesting time on "The Tonight Show." First, Jimmy Fallon helped shave off Brolin's "'70s porn stache" for a movie he just finished. Then, a clean-shaven Josh joined Jimmy and Kate McKinnon for a round of "First Impressions." In the game, the trio were each assigned celebrities to impersonate on the spot, and the others had to guess the celebs.

Josh started with a truly lame Regis Philbin impression, followed by Kate's meh Christopher Walken impression. Then Jimmy got Mike Tyson, which seemed tough, but he nailed it.

After that, Josh was given Kim Kardashian, and that's when things got weird. He started looking around for props ("I need something big") and picked up a box of Kleenex and put it on his butt. "Imagine this is in my pants." (!) He paced around with that box on his butt, then repeated, in his own normal voice, "I could play checkers for hours and never get bored." Kate and Jimmy were not guessing it, so Josh flipped his hair as he paced, and Jimmy finally guessed, tentatively, "Kim Kardashian?" Kate thanked Jimmy for guessing right, since she never would've gotten that.

Here are both the shaving and tissue butt Kardashian videos:

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Joseph Fiennes Was Seriously Cast as Michael Jackson in 9/11 Comedy

Admit it, when you watched "Shakespeare in Love," you thought "That Will Shakespeare actor should play Michael Jackson some day." Congrats, 'cause that day is here!

Believe it or not, British actor Joseph Fiennes will play Michael Jackson -- opposite Stockard Channing as Elizabeth Taylor and Brian Cox as Marlon Brando -- in a road trip comedy called "Elizabeth, Michael & Marlon," following the celebrity trio's rumored cross-country trip after the 9/11 attacks in New York City.

Joseph Fiennes recently described (and defended) the project to WENN:

"I got the script the other day. It's a challenge. It's a comedy. It doesn't poke mean fun but it's a story, possibly urban legend, whereby Michael, Marlon Brando, and Liz Taylor were all together the day before 9/11 doing a concert. Airspace was shut down and they couldn't get out and Michael had the bright idea to go to hire a car and drive. So the three of them got in a car and drove 500 miles to Los Angeles. It took them a while because they had to stop at a lot of Burger Kings for Marlon; but they got out! It's a lovely thing about Michael's relationship with Liz Taylor and Marlon Brando. It's a fun, light-hearted tongue in cheek road trip of what celebrity of that kind is like. But also it's rather beautiful and poignant about their relationships as well."

Sky Arts issued a statement (via Entertainment Weekly) on the half-hour comedy, which is meant to air sometime later this year:

"'Elizabeth, Michael & Marlon' is a Sky Arts comedy which takes a light hearted look at a reportedly true event; Joseph Fiennes is cast as Michael Jackson. It is part of a series of comedies about unlikely stories from arts and cultural history. Sky Arts puts the integrity of the creative vision at the heart of all its original commissions and we believe in giving producers the creative freedom to cast roles as they wish, within the diversity framework which we have set."

That sounds like a pre-emptive strike against anyone threatening to be offended by the white Joseph Fiennes (brother of Ralph Fiennes) taking on the role of Michael Jackson. And, in fact, HitFix has already posted the news under its "Outrage Watch," sharing reaction tweets from critics.

Orlando Jones had a good take:

That would've been great. But it's not happening. And it follows Charlie Hunnam's casting as a Mexican-American drug lord. Needless to say, this is not the diversity many viewers were hoping to see on screen.

Do you think it's in bad taste for Fiennes (and Hunnam) to take roles like this, or should fans just wait and see before judging? Maybe we should be most "offended" by the idea of a comedy set around the September 11 attacks.

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Tom Cruise Teases 'Top Gun 2' With New Photo

It looks like the wheels are finally up on "Top Gun 2." The looooong-awaited sequel to Tom Cruise's 1986 movie got itself a solid script last year, and now there's photographic proof of progress.

Producer Jerry Bruckheimer just posted this photo with Cruise, and Cruise -- who rarely tweets anything -- retweeted the shot:

Someone needs to find the Fountain of Youth that Tom Cruise and Keanu Reeves have hidden somewhere, 'cause 53-year-old Tommy does not look much older than he did in the '80s.

Over the summer, Skydance CEO David Ellison talked to Collider about "Top Gun 2," saying "Justin Marks is writing the screenplay right now. He has a phenomenal take to really update that world for what fighter pilots in the Navy has turned into today. There is an amazing role for Maverick in the movie and there is no Top Gun without Maverick, and it is going to be Maverick playing Maverick."

Shortly after that, while in London for the premiere of "Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation," Cruise addressed the "Top Gun 2" talk with Reuters, saying, "It would be fun. I would like to get back into those jets." However, he said, "It would have to be practical. I don't want any CGI jets. I want to shoot it like how we shot the first one."

So he still wants to do his own stunts, and that may have been part of the weekend conversation between the producer and the star. If they are not only talking about the movie, but sharing a photo from the discussion, that is a solid hint that this puppy will actually fly sometime soon -- like, within the next 30 years.

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Watch Josh Gad and Johnny Galecki Make Out (as Donald Trump) on 'Lip Sync Battle'

Look at LL Cool J's reaction -- it's huuuuuge!

This Thursday, January 28, "Frozen" star Josh Gad is taking on "The Big Bang Theory" star Kaley Cuoco on Spike's "Lip Sync Battle." Spike just posted a couple of teasers for the showdown, including Josh as Donald Trump, performing The Divinyls' "I Touch Myself."

The clip takes a random turn at the end when Kaley's TBBT co-star Johnny Galecki shows up, also wearing a Trump wig, and makes out with Gad's Trump. As one fan put it in the YouTube comments, "Oh my gosh I just saw Leonard make out with Olaf..." Yep, while dressed as Trump! Things you don't see every day.

Kaley laughs, but LL clearly wishes he could unsee it. Megyn Kelly should put that one on repeat.

Here's a preview of Kaley getting dirty to Ludacris's "Move Bitch":

Watch the full battles play out on Thursday. Do you think Trump will tune in?

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10 Animals That Deserved to Win an Oscar

Sometimes the standout star of a movie isn't even human.

In tribute to those animals who gave us all the feels, we decided to compile a list of award-worthy animalistic performances. From "The Wizard of Oz" to "Jaws," here are the 10 non-human thespians who should've taken home Oscar gold.

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Cersei Lannister Reading Insults From 'The Bachelor' Is Perfect

"Game of Thrones" Queen Cersei Lannister would actually be a perfect contestant on "The Bachelor." She's drunk. She's mean. She's jealous. And she has a secret boyfriend back home (who happens to be her brother).

"The Bachelor" is like the War of the Roses with no real winners, except maybe viewers who watch to feel better about themselves. Jimmy Kimmel has to promote the show, 'cause it's on ABC, but he likes to poke fun of it whenever possible. Lena Headey was recently on "Jimmy Kimmel Live," and since she plays Cersei Lannister -- who is basically a walking Mean Tweet -- Jimmy put her to use to read real insults from this season of "The Bachelor" in the voice of Queen C.

Here's the result:

Again, those are real quotes. And she NAILED them. If only the video went on for two hours, like "The Bachelor."

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Urine Luck, Kids: The Official 'Angry Birds' Trailer Is Here

Yep, there's an "Angry Birds" movie coming this May -- taking the birds vs. pigs game, giving it a loose plot, and selling it to kids, their parents, and any other adults who like underdog stories and pee jokes.

A teaser trailer came out last September, but the first official trailer just dropped, focusing on a bird with anger issues named Red (voiced by Jason Sudeikis). Red is the only one who recognizes that the new pigs in town are up to no good. And Red seems to be angry because he's bullied for his eyebrows and treated like an outcast -- like Rudolph if Rudolph just snapped one day.

The trailer takes us through the basics of the story, as Red and his fellow outsider buddies Chuck (Josh Gad) and Bomb (Danny McBride) try to figure out what the green pigs are up to. Along the way, they visit the awe-inspiring Mighty Eagle and learn the truth about his "lake of wisdom." Let's just say it's a good reminder on why you don't want to go around drinking from random fountains and streams. You don't know what's really in there.

This thing has an all-star voice cast, from the three main guys to Maya Rudolph, Kate McKinnon, Tony Hale, Keegan-Michael Key, Bill Hader, and even Peter Dinklage. It's scheduled for release on May 20th.

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15 Times Alex Dunphy Was the Best Dunphy on 'Modern Family'

What would "Modern Family" be without Alex Dunphy? She may be a self-proclaimed nerd and a total overachiever, but that's kinda what makes her so awesome. Alex, played by the hilarious Ariel Winter, brings much needed intelligence, reason, and wit to the Dunphy household and beyond. Plus, she's sassy and snarky when she needs to be and her Haley burns are always on point. Here are 15 times she was the Dunphy we all loved the most.

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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

'Pretty Little Liars' Season 6 Episode 13 Recap: -A Is Back, and Is Now a Devil Emoji

First of all, slow-claps, Freeform. "Pretty Little Liars" continues to be the best show on television, despite the fact that ABC Family has mutated into some vague version of The CW.
This week, everyone's favorite drama-fest served up a plate of good times — aside from whatever is going on with Ezra's facial hair. That is a distinctly bad time. Find out what happened with Spencer and Caleb's blossoming relationship below, plus details on the reemergence of -A.

Spencer and Caleb Are Totally Making Out, It's All Happening, etc
Look, we're all trying to pretend like this isn't a thing, but Spencer appears to have some sort of weird crush on Caleb — despite the fact that he's obviously in love with Hanna and the fact that hdjsahdjsak, what is even happening, PLL writers?!

For some insane reason, Spencer decides to tell Hanna about her Caleb Feels (terrible idea, nope), and for an even more insane reason, Hanna gives her seal of approval. But wait, it gets more painful: Caleb is totally crushing on Spencer, and they definitely make out after he sensually strokes her hand for a solid ten seconds. Are we kinda into it? Do we hate it? Not sure, too many emotions to process.

Don't Worry, Emily Isn't Dying

Curious to know what's wrong with Emily? Turns out she's so broke that she decided to donate her eggs, a fact that Hanna finds out when she discovers Em shooting a giant needle into her leg. Just some casual hormones, don't worry about it!
Meanwhile, Sarah Harvey literally won't leave Emily alone, and Spencer reveals that she hates the liars due to the fact that they accidentally electrocuted her the night A was captured. Apparently Sarah can't use her hands due to said electrocution, so perhaps her grudge is understandable? Either way, the struggle.

Ezra Is Not a Killer, Or So He Wants Us to Think

Pray for Ezra. This tragic man has taken to day drinking because his girlfriend was abducted and killed (seriously, what, someone explain), and he just can't get it together to write his book. The good news? Aria's basically writing it for him. We're not sure if this is plagiarism, but it's definitely weird. What else is new?

Meanwhile, the liars are still convinced that Ezra murdered Cece due to the major serial killer vibes he's projecting, and he's super offended. Who knows what to believe, but Ezra's in a very dark place. All we really know at this time is that Aria uttered the sentence, "Ezra likes small women" in utter seriousness in this week's episode. Do with that information what you will.

Hi, Lucas!

Remember when Hanna deleted footage of Aria leaving her hotel so she wouldn't be implicated in Cece's murder? Well, now Ashley Marin is taking the blame due to being said hotel's owner. Ugh, kids, right?

Fortunately, Lucas shows up (LOL, oh right, him) and after announcing that he's a tech genius living in Palo Alto, he agrees to give the girls an alibi for the night Cece was murdered. Said alibi is hugely unconvincing, but you know, at least he tried.

Most importantly, there appears to be a new A in town, only now he's signing texts with a devil emoji face. Is this a "Scream Queens" cross over that no one told us about...?

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