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Coming Distractions: Level up with the first Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle trailer

12 minutes ago

The game is afoot now that the first trailer for the new Jumanji movie has arrived—and with nary a single die in sight. In accordance with its sequel format, the film has stepped up the gaming technology, ditching the old tabletop for an old console. And rather than have Kirsten Dunst open the gateway to that magical land, the game kicks off when four high school students in a Breakfast Club-like setting are transported to the jungle. Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, and Jack Black become stand-ins for the teens, and promptly start tearing through the jungle in search of... something. Maybe it’s Nick Jonas, who shows up at one point. But once the teens become aware of their avatars’ skills—namely, The Rock and Nebula’s ass-kicking abilities—they stop squandering them and start playing the game.

Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle is due out »

- Danette Chavez

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Newswire: Hannibal Buress sent an impostor to the Spider-Man: Homecoming premiere

9 hours ago

Hannibal Buress just initiated a little Clone Saga of his own, with the stand-up comic and Broad City co-star apparently sending a stand-in to walk the red carpet at the Spider-Man: Homecoming premiere tonight. Per Entertainment Weekly, Buress put out the call for a lookalike on social media earlier tonight, recruiting actor Joe Caroll to serve as his proxy at the big event.

I’m out here at the @SpiderManMovie premiere. In theaters July 8th. pic.twitter.com/ggEdqt5oDr

Hannibal Buress (@hannibalburess) June 29, 2017

Actually July 7th. But also July 8th too

Hannibal Buress (@hannibalburess) June 29, 2017

Buress—who appears in the film as Peter Parker’s gym coach, Coach Wilson—apparently offered Caroll $500 (and the chance to stand somewhat near Robert Downey Jr.) in order to serve as his doppelganger. Sony has yet to comment on the switcheroo. Marvel, meanwhile, quickly excised the “Buress” portion of »

- William Hughes

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Great Job, Internet!: Spider-Man drops in on some Starbucks customers

10 hours ago

Tonight marks the world premiere of Spider-Man: Homecoming, Sony’s latest shot at breathing new life into the Spider-Man movie franchise. But while stars like Tom Holland and the film’s director, Jon Watts, are all busy on the red (and blue, and gold) carpet tonight, fans in one particular New York City Starbucks got to get up-close-and-personal with their friendly neighborhood webslinger.

Put together by viral marketing firm Thinkmodo—who also organized a “telekinetic freak-out” in a similar venue to promote the 2013 Carrie remake—the prank saw customers waiting around for their drinks in the usual bored, phone-checking Starbucks fashion, only to be surprised when a drink comes up for “Spider-Man,” and the man himself comes down. As played by stuntman Chris Silcox, Spidey seems perfectly happy to chat with folks before grabbing his cold-brew, even if a few excited fans couldn’t help but blow up his »

- William Hughes

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Coming Distractions: Celebrities invade Equestria in the first My Little Pony movie trailer

11 hours ago

After years of anticipation, speeches about friendship, and long-promised Sia cameos, the first trailer for My Little Pony: The Movie has finally arrived. What do fans (young, and otherwise) get for their patience? If the trailer’s any indication, some flashier animation, the same lessons about friendship and self-reliance, and a more famous-than-usual set of voice actors on hand to deliver them.

The trailer plays up the role of Emily Blunt’s new villain Tempest, but we also get appearances from Liev Schreiber as her henchman, Kristin Chenoweth as a mer-pony, Zoe Saldana as a bird pirate, and Taye Diggs as some kind of shirtless cat man, for reasons that we have to assume can’t be as openly prurient as they seem. Luckily, the Mane 6—played, as always, by actors Ashleigh Ball, Tabitha St. Germain, Andrea Libman, and Tara Strong—are still on hand to save the day »

- William Hughes

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Newswire: Someone just bought R2-D2 for $2.7 million

12 hours ago

Paying significantly more than the paltry credits Luke Skywalker’s Uncle Owen handed over to the Jawas back on Tatooine, someone has bought a model of beloved Star Wars droid R2-D2 for $2.76 million. The model in question was part of a collection of Star Wars memorabilia up for sale, and was apparently “compiled from parts used throughout filming of the original trilogy.”

The R2-D2 Frankendroid (or Frankendroid’s monster, if you feel like being pedantic) was the most expensive item in the auction, operated by Profiles In History. Other items up on the block included Luke’s lightsaber and one of Darth Vader’s helmets, the perfect trinkets for fans who don’t want to have to bother waiting for the George Lucas Museum to open in L.A. to get up close and personal with their favorite Star Wars props.

[via The Hollywood Reporter] »

- William Hughes

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Newswire: Adidas actually made Life Aquatic shoes, but it’s probably too late to buy them

13 hours ago

Everybody loves those Nike Air Mags from Back To The Future Part II, especially since the company actually sells them from time to time, but they’re definitely not the only pair of badass kicks you can usually only find in a movie. There’s also the customized Team Zissou-branded Adidas Roms from Wes Anderson’s The Life Aquatic, which sneaker-loving film buffs have been pestering Adidas to make for years. Finally, the company came through earlier this month, but you may have already missed your chance to buy a pair of the custom blue and yellow Roms.

As reported by Sneaker News (via Vice), Adidas produced a limited run of 100 Team Zissou Roms and sold them exclusively at the We Love Green music festival in Paris in honor of an appearance from Seu Jorge, whose music was featured prominently in the film. Vice has reached out to Adidas »

- Sam Barsanti

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Newswire: Game Of Thrones’ Carice Van Houten lines up for Brian De Palma’s Domino

14 hours ago

Jaime Lannister and Melisandre don’t hang out much on Game Of Thrones, but at least the actors who play them get to be in a movie together. According to Deadline, Carice Van Houten (who plays Melisandre) has signed on to Brian De Palma’s Domino, joining previously cast star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (who plays Jaime). The film is about a pair of European police officers who “go rogue” while trying to find out who murdered a fellow police officer, and they eventually cross paths with a CIA operative who is trying to find a terrorist cell that is planning a number of attacks across Europe. Christina Hendricks was originally attached to play one of the cops, but she has since been replaced by Van Houten.

In a statement, Van Houten said it’s “a privilege” to work with “such an iconic director,” adding, “who knew that Jaime Lannister and Melisandre »

- Sam Barsanti

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Newswire: Kenya Barris is writing a Russell Simmons biopic

15 hours ago

Black-ish creator Kenya Barris is moving from upper-middle-class life to multi-million-dollar mogulhood, with Deadline reporting that Barris will soon be working on the script for a biopic about Def Jam founder Russell Simmons. Adapted from Simmons’ memoir, Life And Def: Sex Drugs Money + God will chronicle his rise from a childhood in Queens, up through his immersion in the nascent hip-hop scene, and eventual emergence as a label founder, film producer, fashion designer, and activist.

This isn’t the first time a biopic about the early days of Def Jam has been floated; in the wake of Straight Outta Compton’s success back in 2015, Universal also made some noises about adapting Life And Death, with Michael B. Jordan as a potential choice to play Simmons. The project is now over at Fox, though, with Barris—who recently signed a writing deal with the studio—attempting to present a New »

- William Hughes

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Coming Distractions: Get ready to dread the holidays with the trailer for A Bad Moms Christmas

16 hours ago

It may be the end of June, but it’s never too early to start thinking about the holidays. Actually, that’s definitely not true, but it’s never too early to start thinking about having another wacky adventure with the bad moms from the movie Bad Moms. This trailer for A Bad Moms Christmas raises the stakes by introducing the bad moms’ own bad moms, with Christine Baranski, Susan Sarandon, and Cheryl Hines joining original stars Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, and Kathryn Hahn this time around. The first movie mostly centered around the bad moms announcing that they would no longer be putting up with anyone’s bullshit, but this one seems like it will use its Christmastime setting for a larger story about a mom’s right to be happy and whether or not books of homemade coupons are just as good as real presents. (They definitely are »

- Sam Barsanti

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Newswire: Film Academy invites 774 new members, some of whom should’ve been in already

16 hours ago

The Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences is the organization behind the Academy Awards, and it consists of thousands of people who work in the movie industry—from actors and directors to hairstylists and PR people. That means The Academy is basically the not-so-shadowy cabal that runs Hollywood, breaking hearts and making dreams come true with a little bit of Oscar glory, and it’s also the group that takes the blame for things like the #OscarsSoWhite controversy. As a matter of fact, Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs announced after that whole mess that her organization would be making some changes in order to reflect the growing diversity of the filmmaking community, and now it looks like some of those changes are taking effect.

As reported by Deadline, The Academy has invited 774 new members to join, bringing the full roster to around 8,000 and increasing the numbers »

- Sam Barsanti

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Newswire: Hunt For The Wilderpeople’s Julian Dennison joins Deadpool 2

17 hours ago

The upcoming Deadpool 2 has added yet another weapon to its over-stuffed bag of comedic armaments, with The Wrap reporting that 14-year-old actor Julian Dennison has joined the foul-mouthed superhero sequel. Dennison made an international name for himself last year, starring opposite Sam Neill in Taika Waititi’s well-received Hunt For The Wilderpeople. Now he’s teaming up with the Merc With The Mouth, with Ryan Reynolds announcing the casting with a shot of Dennison clinging to his red-and-black-clad back.

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Normally, we’d roll our eyes at an R-rated action flick adding a kid sidekick to the mayhem. But Dennison has already proven himself in the Deadpool-friendly fields of violence, swearing, and accidental sexual innuendo, as Wilderpeople’s nigh-legendary Ricky Baker: »

- William Hughes

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For Our Consideration: What did Lgbtq movies look like before Stonewall?

18 hours ago

“Well, nobody’s perfect!”

Some Like It Hot, 1959

Queer themes wrote themselves into the history of film early on—a statistical inevitability, because even in those periods when explicitly Lgbtq characters and plots were kept out of the mainstream, there were bound to be a few gay or bisexual men behind the camera. Among these were some of the canonical greats of the first half-century of movies: F.W. Murnau, Jean Cocteau, George Cukor, James Whale, et al. Of course, they were all male. When it comes to American sound film before the 1950s, notable examples of bona fide sapphic ogling are pretty much limited to the giggly, touchy, silk-nightie-hung gal pals of The Wild Party (1929), directed by Dorothy Arzner, who was about as out as a woman could be at the time while pursuing a high-profile career. As for any expression of self that might be prefixed »

- Ignatiy Vishnevetsky

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Great Job, Internet!: Here’s that Rufio origin story starring the dude who played him in Hook

18 hours ago

Talks of a prequel to Steven Spielberg’s 1991 film Hook centering around bad boy Rufio have been bangaranging around the internet since 2012 or so. Earlier this year, however, some forward momentum was made on the project when Dante Basco, the actor who portrayed Rufio, announced a Kickstarter for a short film that would tell the story of the character’s arrival in Neverland. Despite only seeking $30,000, Basco and director Jonah Feingold raised nearly $70,000. Now, you can see just how they put that money to use.

Aptly titled Bangarang, the 17-minute short stars Sheaden Gabriel as Roofus and Basco as the boy’s principal. Despite its cheesiness, the short’s a sweet, good-natured tale that should please fans of the original, especially those with kids they’re hoping to convert into fans. Watch the whole thing below.

Sure, it won’t blow anyone’s minds »

- Randall Colburn

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Newswire: Neil Marshall says his Hellboy will be R-rated and full of practical effects

19 hours ago

Guillermo Del Toro’s two Hellboy movies weren’t exactly Phantom Menace-style showcases for the latest advancements in CG technology, but Hellboy reboot director Neil Marshall is still making it a point to reassure fans that his movie will have plenty of old-school practical effects. Marshall offered that tidbit on a recent episode of the Post Mortem podcast (via Bloody Disgusting), adding, “I love to do stuff in camera whenever I possibly can and use CG as the amazing tool that it is, to enhance or expand upon the world,” but he doesn’t like using CG to “replace reality.” Hopefully that means that new Hellboy star David Harbour will be covered in layers of bright red prosthetics like old Hellboy Ron Perlman, since that’s a much cooler look than simply using the actor as a stand-in for some cartoon monster. Who knows, maybe that was one of »

- Sam Barsanti

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Coming Distractions: Aubrey Plaza amps up the insanity in the trailer for Ingrid Goes West

19 hours ago

Aubrey Plaza has made a career—and a quite successful one, we might add—out of playing socially alienated weirdos, but she takes her outcast persona to new heights in the upcoming pitch-black stalker comedy Ingrid Goes West. Plaza stars as the title character, an emotionally unstable woman who, after a stint in a psychiatric hospital, moves to L.A. to get closer to the latest object of her obsession: a boho chic Instagram star named Taylor Sloane (Elizabeth Olsen). After stealing and then returning Taylor’s “lost” dog, Ingrid insinuates herself into Taylor’s picture-perfect life, a ruse that seems to work on everyone but aspiring actor Dan Pinto (O’Shea Jackson, Jr.).

Ingrid Goes West will begin stalking theaters on August 11. »

- Katie Rife

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Newswire: Michelle Rodriguez says she’s out unless Fast And Furious revs up female characters

21 hours ago

Over the course of the Fast & The Furious franchise’s evolution from a drag-racing crime drama to the most over-the-top display of mechanical excess this side of the Transformers movies, Michelle Rodriguez’s Letty Ortiz has remained a constant. First introduced in The Fast And The Furious as main man Dom’s (Vin Diesel) girlfriend, over the course of eight movies her character has evolved into, um, Dom’s wife. A skilled street racer in her own right, Letty is the only original female character left over from the first film, although she’s been relegated to the background for much of the past few films. And Rodriguez is getting bored with it.

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In a post on Instagram earlier this week, Rodriguez essentially threatened to hit the gas and drive away if Fast & Furious doesn’t “show some love to the women of the franchise »

- Katie Rife

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Movie Review: Despicable Me 3 is as tired as its ’80s duds

22 hours ago

Here’s one to distract the kids. Despicable Me 3 (styled Despicable M3), the latest animated adventure to feature the neckless, pick-nosed ex-villain Gru (Steve Carell) and his gibberishy, Twinkoid, banana-sucking Minions, finds our grumpy hero enlisting the help of his long-lost twin brother, Dru (Carell again), in order to foil Balthazar Bratt (Trey Parker), the former child star of the hit 1980s TV show Evil Bratt (catchphrase: “I’ve been a bad boy!”), who is now a moonwalking super-criminal armed with Rubik’s Cube bombs, thermic yo-yos, and a grappling Walkman. Those who have seen too many of these things may recall that “Gru” is supposed to be the character’s last name and might even point out that it doesn’t make any sense for his brother to be named “Dru,” but who really cares? The reunion is occasioned by a trip to Gru’s hitherto unmentioned homeland »

- Ignatiy Vishnevetsky

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Coming Distractions: Hugh Jackman becomes The Greatest Showman in new trailer

22 hours ago

Ladies and gentlemen, and anyone else interested in a biopic about circus founder P.T. Barnum: We have the first trailer for Michael Gracey’s The Greatest Showman, starring Hugh Jackman as the politician, businessman, and notorious hoaxster. The trailer for the film, which was written by Jenny Bicks and Bill Condon, is full of pluck, complete with a soaring ballad scoring the downtrodden Barnum’s rise from failed businessman to, well, greatest showman. Because of that heavy-handed tune, we don’t hear Jackman sing, but when he does, it will be with words from La La Land lyricists Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. Michelle Williams wordlessly and cheerfully supports her onscreen husband, who recruits Zac Efron as the resident hardbody, or strongman, or maybe trapeze artist—we can’t really tell from the trailer, but he does end up in the hospital. And Zendaya, who might now be contractually »

- Danette Chavez

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Newswire: You might not need glasses to watch Avatar 2 in 3-D

23 hours ago

Just like recreating the Titanic disaster or forcing millions of people to watch tall blue aliens have sex with their hair, the idea of a glasses-free 3-D experience might be moving from James Cameron’s fantasies to reality. Inside The Magic reports Cameron’s company Lightstorm Entertainment has renewed a five-year agreement with Christie Digital to “create high-tech, immersive cinema.” So far, so boring press release. But the real news here is that part of the agreement includes Christie supplying one of their Rgb projection systems to Cameron for the Avatar sequels. This provides massively bright and crisp images at a high frame rate—i.e. it pushes right up against the possibility of 3-D without those shitty plastic glasses.

This has been Cameron’s celluloid wet dream for a while now: He said last year that he wanted to develop the glasses-free 3-D experience for film, and this deal »

- Alex McLevy

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Interview: Okja’s Tilda Swinton and Bong Joon-Ho crafted their greedy capitalist tale long before Trump’s presidency

28 June 2017 7:00 AM, PDT

This interview contains plot points of the film Okja.

Before The A.V. Club settled down to speak to Tilda Swinton and Bong Joon-Ho about their new film Okja, there was cooing. That’s because Swinton had just given this reporter permission to “cuddle” a rotund, pink, stuffed version of the eponymous super-pig—or one of her brethren—while conducting the interview at a New York hotel earlier this month.

Indeed, Okja herself is a remarkable, sweet creature—with the demeanor of a hyper-intelligent puppy—but the movie is more than a huggable romp. Rather, it’s about the villainy of a corporation willing to do anything for a buck. Swinton plays Lucy Mirando—as well as her twin sister, Nancy. Upon taking over her nasty father’s company, Lucy announces a contest called the Super Pig Project whereby piggies are sent to farmers around the world and the best »

- Esther Zuckerman

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