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Ahsoka Tano Disney Plus Series Adds Mary Elizabeth Winstead

Ahsoka Tano Disney Plus Series Adds Mary Elizabeth Winstead
Mary Elizabeth Winstead has signed on for a role in the upcoming Ahsoka Tano live-action series at Disney Plus, Variety has confirmed.

Rosario Dawson is set to star in the title role in “Ahsoka,” whom she first played in Season 2 of “The Mandalorian.” It was previously reported that Natasha Liu Bordizzo would star as Sabine Wren and that Ivanna Sakhno would play what is believed to be a new “Star Wars” character in the series. Details on Winstead’s character are currently being kept under wraps.

Winstead’s recent feature credits include projects such as “Birds of Prey,” “Gemini Man,” and “10 Cloverfield Lane.” She has also starred in numerous TV shows in recent years, including Season 3 of “Fargo” at FX opposite “Star Wars” alum Ewan McGregor, who will reprise the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi in his own Disney Plus series. Winstead has also starred in shows like “Mercy Street,
See full article at Variety »

Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra Welcome Baby Via Surrogate

Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra Welcome Baby Via Surrogate
Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra are walking into their biggest roles yet: The two are parents!   The White Tiger actress announced the happy news in an Instagram post on Jan. 21. "We are overjoyed to confirm that we have welcomed a baby via surrogate. We respectfully ask for privacy during this special time as we focus on our family," concluding the post, "Thank you so much." Immediately after sharing the news, the happy couple received an endless amount of well wishes from friends and family. Nick's brother Kevin Jonas was one of the first to add a few heart emojis in celebration of the good news, while actress Lilly Singh was also one of the first to share words of support,...
See full article at E! Online »

‘Mission: Impossible 7’ and ‘8’ Postponed Until 2023 and 2024 Due to Pandemic

‘Mission: Impossible 7’ and ‘8’ Postponed Until 2023 and 2024 Due to Pandemic
Mission: Impossible” fans will have to wait a little longer to watch Ethan Hunt save the world from imminent destruction.

Paramount Pictures will delay the release of the next two films in the long-running spy series. “Mission: Impossible 7,” which was previously supposed to premiere on Sept. 30, will now debut on July 14, 2023. That means that “Mission: Impossible 8,” most recently intended to open on July 7, 2023, will instead shift to June 28, 2024.

The seventh film, which is co-produced by Skydance, was originally slated to open on July 23, 2021 and has been postponed multiple times as the public health situation has changed. The movie’s globe-trotting production has also been delayed due to Covid-19. “Mission: Impossible” films tend to be complex to shoot as they have many stunts and effects, with the filmmaking team trying to do as little green screen work as possible. They also often jet from one foreign port of call to another,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Louie Anderson, Emmy-Winning Comedian, Dies at 68

Louie Anderson, Emmy-Winning Comedian, Dies at 68
Louie Anderson, the iconic Emmy-winning comedian, actor and game show host, died Friday in Las Vegas after battling cancer, his publicist confirmed to Variety. He was 68.

A seasoned stand-up with a career spanning over three decades, Anderson broke through as a comedian in 1984 when he performed a set on “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.” From there, he performed a comedy special on Showtime in 1987, made regular TV appearances on late-night shows and appeared in movies such as “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” in 1986 and “Coming to America” in 1988.

In 1995, Anderson produced, created and starred in the Fox original animated series “Life With Louie.” Like much of Anderson’s stand-up, “Life With Louie” was based heavily on his experiences growing up in Saint Paul, Minn., in a large family of 11 children. The comic voiced a fictionalized version of his eight-year-old self in the show, winning two Daytime Emmys for performer in an animated program.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Meat Loaf, ‘Bat Out of Hell’ Singer and Prolific Actor, Dies at 74

Meat Loaf, ‘Bat Out of Hell’ Singer and Prolific Actor, Dies at 74
Singer Meat Loaf, whose “Bat Out of Hell” album is among the best-selling and most enduring rock albums of the 1970s, died on Jan. 20 at the age of 74. A consummate performer, he also appeared as an actor in the cult classic “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” as well as “Crazy Alabama,” “Fight Club” and “Wayne’s World,” among dozens more film and television credits.

Meat Loaf, whose real name is Marvin Lee Aday, won a 1994 Grammy Award for best solo rock vocal performance for the song “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That).”

A cause of death was not given. An official statement from the Meat Loaf Facebook page reads:

Our hearts are broken to announce that the incomparable Meat Loaf passed away tonight with his wife Deborah by his side. Daughters Pearl and Amanda and close friends have been with him throughout the last 24 hours.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Kirsten Dunst to Star in Alex Garland’s Action Epic ‘Civil War’ at A24

  • Variety
Kirsten Dunst to Star in Alex Garland’s Action Epic ‘Civil War’ at A24
After teaming for Academy Award winner “Ex Machina” and the upcoming project “Men,” A24 has announced Alex Garland’s latest movie, “Civil War.”

Kirsten Dunst is set to star alongside Wagner Moura, Stephen McKinley Henderson and Cailee Spaeny in the action film written and directed by Garland. Aside from the fact that the film is set in a near future America, plot details are being kept under wraps.

In 2016, Garland received an Academy Award nomination for best original screenplay for “Ex Machina,” which also won an Oscar for achievement in visual effects. Garland followed the critically acclaimed movie with 2018’s “Annihilation” and the FX series “Devs.” His upcoming projects include “Men,” starring Jessie Buckley and Rory Kinnear, which A24 will release later this year.

A24 will handle the global release of the film and produce alongside Andrew Macdonald and Allon Reich of DNA and Gregory Goodman. DNA previously teamed with Garland for “Ex Machina,
See full article at Variety »

‘Knives Out 2’ Expected to Drop in Late 2022, Fall Festival Debut Likely (Exclusive)

‘Knives Out 2’ Expected to Drop in Late 2022, Fall Festival Debut Likely (Exclusive)
You can expect to see the next installment of Daniel Craig as Private Detective Benoit Blanc in “Knives Out 2” streaming on Netflix this fall. Variety has learned exclusively that writer and director Rian Johnson’s hotly-anticipated sequel is expected to release in theaters and the streaming platform in the last quarter of 2022.

In addition, the film is expected to also make a festival run before its release, although it’s unknown which ones it’s expected to debut at. With this added layer, we can expect the sequel to be a possible awards hopeful for Netflix next year. The streamer is expected to dominate the Oscar season once again this year, with Jane Campion’s “The Power of the Dog,” Adam McKay’s “Don’t Look Up” and Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “Tick, Tick … Boom!” being heavy favorites to receive best picture attention.

Details surrounding the film are still under wraps,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘A Christmas Story’ Sequel In The Works At Legendary And Warner Bros. With Peter Billingsley Set To Reprise Ralphie Role

‘A Christmas Story’ Sequel In The Works At Legendary And Warner Bros. With Peter Billingsley Set To Reprise Ralphie Role
While Christmas has come and gone, Legendary and Warner Bros. are looking to give a belated gift to us all as sources tell Deadline the two companies have closed a deal for Peter Billingsley to star in A Christmas Story Christmas, a sequel to the holiday classic A Christmas Story, which will premiere on HBO Max. While not confirmed, sources add Airplane star Julie Hagerty will play Billingsley’s mother. The script was written by Nick Schenk, who will also executive produce, and Clay Kaytis will direct. Billingsley will also produce along with his partner Vince Vaughn through their Wild West Picture Show productions. Cale Boyter and Jay Ashenfelter will oversee for Legendary. Production is set to start at the end of February in Bulgaria.

The film follows an adult Ralphie (Billingsley) in the 1970s, who returns to the house on Cleveland street to deliver his kids a magical Christmas
See full article at Deadline »

‘Watcher’ Review: Maika Monroe Makes a Fine Modern Everywoman in an Eerie Throwback Thriller

‘Watcher’ Review: Maika Monroe Makes a Fine Modern Everywoman in an Eerie Throwback Thriller
If the camera lingered just a little more lasciviously on the opening sex scene, or if we got to ogle the bondage-clad ladies writhing in their glass booths in the underground strip club sequence longer, Chloe Okuno’s smart little feature debut might be said to herald the longed-for return of the lost, lamented erotic thriller. Without that skeevy edge, into an understatedly stylish commentary on modern womanhood, #NotAllMen and the latest incarnation of the concept of gaslighting.

There’s a little bit of “Repulsion” here, a dash of “Rear Window,” obviously, and an airy nod to “Lost in Translation,” but mostly “Watcher” plays in a less exalted sandbox. Its most overt homage is to 1993’s “Sliver,” with the key disclaimer that “Sliver,” already a terrible movie, would without the hilarious sex stuff be borderline unwatchable, and “Watcher” is actually pretty damn good. That’s thanks in large part to a terrific Maika Monroe,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Nothing Compares’ Review: Looking Back at the Beautiful Fury of Sinéad O’Connor

‘Nothing Compares’ Review: Looking Back at the Beautiful Fury of Sinéad O’Connor
Album covers used to be mythically important — they could etch the image of a musician forever in your mind’s eye. In “Nothing Compares,” Kathryn Ferguson’s incisive and poignant documentary about the life and career of Sinéad O’Connor, we see the image that was chosen in 1987 for the cover of O’Connor’s first album, “The Lion and the Cobra,” made when she was 20 years old and pregnant: an extraordinary photograph of Sinéad in mid-scream. Talk about mythology! That’s how the album was released in Europe, but for us benighted souls in America, the image was deemed to edgy. It was replaced by that demure shot of Sinéad staring downward.

Sinéad O’Connor was far from the first pop star to scream (you can go back to the earliest rockers) or to scream in rage. But as “Nothing Compares” shows you, and — this was her artistry — she was going to make it beautiful.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Leonor Will Never Die’ Review: A Female Filmmaker Steers Her Own Story in a Kooky Filipino Meta-Film

‘Leonor Will Never Die’ Review: A Female Filmmaker Steers Her Own Story in a Kooky Filipino Meta-Film
From its opening minutes, Martika Ramirez Escobar’s meta-prank “Leonor Will Never Die” aims to scramble the viewers. Leonor Reyes (Sheila Francisco), an elderly retired action film director in Manila who, the title assures us, must have some claim to immortality, pads into view from the knees-down and steps onto a trunk – the universal film cliché for suicide. Not so fast, but it is true that awful things have happened to Leonor. Her ex-husband Valentin (Alan Bautista), a former movie star, has left. Her favorite son Ronwaldo (Anthony Falcon) is dead. And her least-favorite son Rudie (Bong Cabrera) is hounding her to pay the electric bill, which is three months past due and would have already been shut off if Leonor hadn’t helmed the meter reader’s mother’s favorite shoot-em-ups.

If life was one of Leonor’s films, she could write a happy ending. Instead, Leonor consoles herself
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Free Chol Soo Lee’ Review: Remembering a Cause Célèbre of Korean-American Activism

‘Free Chol Soo Lee’ Review: Remembering a Cause Célèbre of Korean-American Activism
“Free Chol Soo Lee” charts the complicated history of a wrongful-conviction victim who became a figurehead for both Asian-American and prisoners’-rights activists in the 1970s and beyond. Julie Ha and Eugene Yi’s film benefits from ample archival material, as well as latter-day input from surviving interviewees. Even so, it’s a tale ultimately more sad than inspiring, because Lee’s case embodies the odds stacked against even an exoneree adjusting successfully to civilian life after debilitating years in “the system.” With its focus on a fairly recent if little-remembered U.S. historical chapter and surrounding community activism, this involving documentary seems a natural fit for PBS and equivalent broadcast outlets.

Lee was born in Seoul in 1952, his mother moving alone to the U.S. soon thereafter, having been ostracized by her family for falling pregnant out of wedlock. (It is suggested that she was raped.) Fourteen years later she returned to retrieve him,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Arnold Schwarzenegger Unhurt, Woman Injured After Car Crash in Brentwood

Arnold Schwarzenegger Unhurt, Woman Injured After Car Crash in Brentwood
Arnold Schwarzenegger was involved in an auto accident Friday afternoon in Brentwood that sent a woman to the hospital with minor injuries.

The actor and former California governor was driving his Gmc Yukon when it was involved in a crash with a Toyota Prius at the intersection of Sunset Boulevard and Allenford Avenue, near the Riveria Country Club. Two other cars in the intersection were also struck as a result of the collision. A woman was transported to the hospital with what was described as minor injuries, according to the Los Angeles Times.

A spokesman for Schwarzenegger confirmed the actor
See full article at Variety - TV News »

‘Call Jane’ Review: An Inspiring if Simplified History of Chicago’s Underground Abortion Network

‘Call Jane’ Review: An Inspiring if Simplified History of Chicago’s Underground Abortion Network
There are a whole lot of cigarettes in “Call Jane,” a detail — along with flip bob hairstyles and polyester pantsuits — that demonstrates director Phyllis Nagy’s commitment to the late-’60s period, even as it shows that the movie isn’t trying to tell women what to do with their bodies. Inspired by true events, this Sundance-blessed abortion drama takes place more than 50 years ago, but it could hardly be more timely today, as the Supreme Court considers several cases with the potential to roll back the freedoms granted by Roe v. Wade. Set in 1968, half a decade before that decision, the movie tells the story of the Chicago-based network of activists who called themselves the Jane Collective — a clandestine group of women committed to helping other women find a safe way to get illegal abortions. As the tagline goes, “You’ve come a long way, baby.”

Who were the Janes?
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Chak De! India,’ ‘Bunty Aur Babli’ Writer Jaideep Sahni Set for Yrf Entertainment’s Next Streaming Series (Exclusive)

‘Chak De! India,’ ‘Bunty Aur Babli’ Writer Jaideep Sahni Set for Yrf Entertainment’s Next Streaming Series (Exclusive)
Jaideep Sahni, screenwriter on acclaimed films “Chak De! India,” “Khosla Ka Ghosla,” “Company,” “Rocket Singh: Salesman of the Year” and “Bunty Aur Babli” will create the next series from Yrf Entertainment, Variety understands.

Yrf Entertainment is leading Indian studio Yash Raj Films’ streaming business, which was set up in 2021 with an initial investment of $67.1 million. As revealed by Variety, Yrf Entertainment launched in Dec. 2021 with Bhopal gas tragedy series “The Railway Men,” created by Shiv Rawail.

Like Rawail, Sahni has had a long association with the studio. Besides “Chak De! India,” starring Shah Rukh Khan, “Rocket Singh: Salesman of the Year” starring Ranbir Singh,
See full article at Variety - TV News »

‘Master’ Review: Echoes of Historical Crimes Permeate a Haunted College in This Stylish Horror Film

‘Master’ Review: Echoes of Historical Crimes Permeate a Haunted College in This Stylish Horror Film
There is something inherently unsettling about an elite university’s aura of vanity. Few other contemporary locations summon such a sense of reverence, exclusivity and historical angst — especially if the college is somewhere in brisk New England and adorned with the Ivy League distinction. Through an unnerving blend of supernatural horror and psychological drama, fiercely talented writer-director Mariama Diallo’s debut feature “Master” reflects on the roots and customs of one such illustrious school of eerily beautiful stone buildings and handsomely dim, wood-heavy chambers. It’s a fictional prototype called Ancaster, erected near where the Salem witch trials were once carried out. Diallo knows exactly what makes the grounds and hallways of these often lily-white institutions spine-tingling as she dissects their historical footprint, real and imagined, through the ghosts of those who left it.

The result is a stylish, sometimes terrifying genre film that shares DNA with Nia DaCosta’s “Candyman,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ Choreographer Breaks Down Andrew Garfield and Robin de Jesús’ ‘No More’ Dance Sequence

‘Tick, Tick… Boom!’ Choreographer Breaks Down Andrew Garfield and Robin de Jesús’ ‘No More’ Dance Sequence
For “Tick, Tick… Boom!” choreographer Ryan Heffington, coming up with the steps for “No More” — the musical’s duet between Jonathan (Andrew Garfield) and Michael (Robin de Jesús) — was a collaborative process.

“It was about what felt good on their bodies,” Heffington tells Variety of Garfield and de Jesús, adding that the two are “great movers.”

“No More” comes early in the Lin-Manuel Miranda-directed film, as Jonathan is workshopping his new show “Superbia,” but still hasn’t had a breakthrough. Meanwhile, his best friend Michael, a research executive, is zooming around town in a BMW and has a new apartment with a doorkeeper. Through the song, Michael suggests that it might be time for Jonathan to consider a new career.

“Lin wanted the effect of floaty and moving through space,” explains Heffington. But the seasoned choreographer, who has also worked on “Baby Driver” and “Pose,” says the song’s
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Oscar’s Foreign Accent Dates Back to the Birth of Cinema

Oscar’s Foreign Accent Dates Back to the Birth of Cinema
The public considers the Academy Awards as a Hollywood event. True, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences is headquartered in Southern California, and most of the best pic contenders are American and/or in the English language. But Oscar history proves they have been an international event from the beginning.

In the first year (1927-28), there were nominations for directors Herbert Brenon (born in Ireland) and Lewis Milestone (born in Moldova), plus a special award to Charlie Chaplin (from the U.K.).

The next five years saw two noms apiece for directors Ernst Lubitsch (Germany) and Josef von Sternberg (Austria). And the second best actress Academy Award was given to Canadian Mary Pickford.

The early years of Oscar featured a slew of non-Americans. Aside from mega-star Chaplin, the list of early Academy Award winners includes Emil Jannings, George Arliss (U.K.), Claudette Colbert (raised in the U.S. but
See full article at Variety - Film News »

From ‘Zombieland’ to Sundance: Jesse Eisenberg on Teaming With Emma Stone for ‘When You Finish Saving the World’

From ‘Zombieland’ to Sundance: Jesse Eisenberg on Teaming With Emma Stone for ‘When You Finish Saving the World’
For Jesse Eisenberg’s feature directorial debut, “When You Finish Saving the World,” he crafted a quirky family dramedy about a woman Evelyn (Julianne Moore) and her “oblivious” son Ziggy (Finn Wolfhard) as they struggle to connect.

The movie debuted Thursday as an opening day selection for Sundance 2022 nearly one year to the day after Eisenberg sat down with Variety to discuss the Audible originals drama on which this script was based. Joining the Variety Virtual Sundance Studio presented by Audible, the emerging filmmaker looked back on the project’s journey from audio production to A24 release.

“I feel so fortunate to have been able to work on something during this time, because I know so many people who would normally be working who just were not able to,” Eisenberg said, taking in the full circle moment. “I feel very fortunate that we were able to finish it and that the movie is coming out,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Ana de Armas Fans Sue Because She Was Cut Out of ‘Yesterday’

Ana de Armas Fans Sue Because She Was Cut Out of ‘Yesterday’
Two fans filed a federal class action lawsuit on Friday alleging they were duped into renting the 2019 film “Yesterday” because Ana de Armas appeared in the trailer.

Conor Woulfe, 38, of Maryland, and Peter Michael Rosza, 44, of San Diego County, Calif., say they each paid $3.99 to rent the movie on Amazon Prime, only to discover that de Armas was removed from the final cut of the film.

The suit accuses Universal of engaging in deceptive marketing, and seeks to recoup at least $5 million on behalf of affected consumers.

“Because consumers were promised a movie with Ana De Armas by the trailer for ‘Yesterday,’ but did not receive a movie with any appearance of Ana de Armas at all, such consumers were not provided with any value for their rental or purchase,” the lawsuit states.

Yesterday” stars Himesh Patel as Jack Malik, a singer-songwriter who, through a supernatural occurrence, is the only
See full article at Variety - Film News »
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