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AMC has renewed Halt and Catch Fire for another 10 episode series.  The second season will air next summer.

Halt and Catch Fire stars Lee Pace (Guardians of the Galaxy, The Hobbit), Scoot McNairy, MacKenzie Davis and Kerry Bishe.

Benny_hollywoodreporterBenedict Cumberbatch, who truly does threaten to be in just about everything now, is playing Khan again.  No, not that Khan!  Benny will be the voice of Shere Khan, the villainous tiger of Warner Bros.’ upcoming Jungle Book, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

And guess who will be directing?  None other than Benny’s Hobbit co-star (and second unit director) Andy Serkis!

Warner Bros., you say?  Isn’t The Jungle Book a Disney property?  Yes, indeed it is – and Disney is working on a remake its own self, with fellow Brit Idris Elba voicing Shere Khan.

Maybe that Jaguar ad with Tom Hiddleston is right – the best villains really are Brits?

We’ll also be able to hear Benny do his best secret agent wolf impression when Penguins of Madagascar hits theaters November 26th in the U.S., December 5th in the U.K.  Of course, he’ll also once again be terrorizing humans, elves and dwarves as Smaug and The Necromancer in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, out December 17th in the U.S., December 12th in the U.K.

His next film where he actually appears as a human is The Imitation Game, which will lead the Toronto International Film Festival.  He’s already receiving Oscar buzz for this one.

Image: Benedict Cumberbatch via The Hollywood Reporter

#The Jungle Book #Benedict Cumberbatch #Penguins of Madagascar

The Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix Vol. 1 soundtrack has hit #1 on the Billboard charts.  One of the most popular songs from the album is Redbone’s Come and Get Your Love from 1974.  It comes early on in the movie (in one of my favorite scenes).

So who is Redbone?  I happened across this interview with the only remaining Redbone member, bassist Pat Vegas, on IndianCountryTodayMediaNetwork.com, and I thought it was interesting.  Since I had only heard the song and hadn’t seen pictures of the band members themselves, I hadn’t realized that they were American Indian (dots now connected, duh).  Vegas talks about the band and the song, and how it ended up in GOTG which, by the way, is far from the first movie this song has been in.

In honor of the song’s 40th anniversary this year, Vegas will be receive a lifetime achievement award at the West Coast American Indian Awards on August 30th.

A related article is here, including a video of the band playing the song on the television show The Midnight Special (embedded below.)  At the beginning of the video there’s about 45 seconds of one of the band members doing a native dance in costume.  Enjoy.

#Come and Get Your Love #Guardians of the Galaxy #GOTG

Creative Arts Emmy Wins

Emmy_via_colliderThere’s a lot of behind-the-scenes work that goes on to create a television show or miniseries, and the Creative Arts Emmys are for those folks whose names are not of the household variety.  Here are a few of the awards given out last night:

The episode titled His Last Vow from the BBC’s Sherlock (starring, of course, Benedict I’m-In-Almost-Everything Cumberbatch and Martin So-Am-I Freeman), won four awards, Single Camera Picture Editing for a Miniseries or a Movie; Sound Editing for a Miniseries, Movie or Special; Music Composition for a Miniseries, Movie or Special (Original Dramatic Score); and Cinematography for a Miniseries or Movie.  Congratulations to Hartswood!

Martin Freeman’s FX series Fargo was nominated in 18 categories, but only won one, Casting in a Miniseries/Movie/Special (you can’t argue with that one).  The show has been renewed for a second season.

Downton Abbey won for Hairstyling for a Single-Camera Series.

NBC’s The Blacklist won Stunt Coordination for a Drama Series, Miniseries or Movie.

Game of Thrones, as usual, was a big winner.

Deadline has a full list of winners here.

The Primetime Emmy Awards takes place on August 25th, and airs live on NBC.  Seth Meyers will host.  The official website with a link to the list of nominees is here.  Cumberbatch and Freeman are competing against each other for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie, Benedict for Sherlock: His Last Vow and Freeman for Fargo.  Freeman is nominated in the supporting category for Sherlock, which is also up for the award for writing.  I’m surprised James Spader was not nominated for The Blacklist, but he would be up against, among others, Bryan Cranston for Breaking Bad, Kevin Spacey for House of Cards and Matthew McConaughey for True Detective, so the category is chock-full of excellent actors.

#Emmy Awards #Creative Arts Emmy Awards #Sherlock BBC

BOFTAChronicles_WetaFor those of you who are into the more aesthetic aspects of filmmaking, Weta Workshop has released for pre-order The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Chronicles: Art & Design.  The book will be shipped the same day as the film opens here in the U.S., December 17th.

TheOneRing.net (TORn) tweeted about the fact that several Hobbit vets have television series currently, including Martin Freeman, who’s playing around in Fargo, which has just been renewed for a second season.  At some point Freeman and Hobbit co-star Benedict Cumberbatch will be returning to duty on the BBC as Sherlock and Watson for a fourth season (and a Christmas special).  Graham McTavish (Dwalin) is in Starz’ Outlander, which has also been renewed.  And of course, we’re still waiting on a renewal decision from AMC about Lee Pace’s Halt and Catch Fire.

In the meantime, Sir Ian McKellen is also playing Sherlock, in a film titled Mr. Holmes.  The movie is based on a novel by Mitch Cullen, A Slight Trick of the Mind, and not one of Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories.  Cullen portrays Sherlock as elderly and forgetful, and yet he decides he must handle one last case.  The film will be out next year.

Business Insider (of all things) has the photos of Guardians of the Galaxy’s Lee Pace becoming Ronan.  Lee must have a lot of patience in the makeup chair.  He’s recently played a vampire, the Elvenking Thranduil in The Hobbit films, and was completely unrecognizable as Ronan.

GOTG_ronan_lee_via_hypable

Speaking of Guardians, Marvel has released the first of the two Easter eggs in the credits, you know if you’ve seen it that it’s the scene everybody’s been talking about.  Spoiler alert if you haven’t yet seen the film, although since it’s been out for two weeks I don’t really have a lot of sympathy for you if you haven’t gotten your butt to the theater!  But notice I was nice and just put the link in above instead embedding the video.  You’re welcome.

Speaking of Lee Pace, his latest role in Halt and Catch Fire saw him actually playing a human.  I keep checking, but despite a large end-of-season bump, there is no word yet on whether HACF will get a second season.  In the meantime, Lee has moved on to a starring role in Prisoner of War, and Kerry Bishe (Donna) is also working on a film.  Mackenzie Davis (Cameron) has a film coming out, What If, with Daniel Radcliffe.  So the stars of HACF aren’t sitting around on their butts, unlike The Powers That Be at AMC, apparently.

Image: Lee Pace via Hypable

Back In Black(list)

Red.  AC/DC.  Back In Black.  And a fedora.  A whole lotta cool in one promo.

NBC’s The Blacklist returns on September 22nd.

#TheBlacklist

Lauren Bacall 1924-2014

lauren-bacall_via_ign_dotcomI hope this is the last of the sad posts I have to do for some time.  Yesterday legendary actress Lauren Bacall passed away after suffering a massive stroke.  She was 89.

She was married for 12 years to film legend Humphrey Bogart, with whom she made several movies and had two children, a son and a daughter.  Her second husband was actor Jason Robards, with whom she had another son, actor Sam Robards.  She divorced Jason Robards in 1969 and never remarried.

Known for her smoky, sultry voice, and scenes like the famous “whistle” scene in her first film, To Have and Have Not (with Bogart), Bacall was a sex symbol from the time she stepped in front of a camera at the age of 19.

Bacall was active in movies during what is called The Golden Age of Cinema, the era generally defined as the late 1920’s to the early 1960’s.  We are rapidly losing film stars from that time.  To me what made that era so special was the sheer glamour of that period, the like of which we will never see again.  Long gone are the days when ladies wouldn’t leave the house without a hat and gloves, and gentlemen wouldn’t set foot outside without a fedora.  Edith Head was dressing Hollywood’s most beautiful women in gowns that would make the most fashionable women today green with envy.  I might have to revisit some of those old films and remind myself what we’re missing.

When her film career slowed, Bacall took Broadway by storm and in the process won two Tony awards, both for musicals (Applause and Woman of the Year).  The only Oscar she ever won was an honorary one, in 2009.

Bacall wrote two autobiographies, Lauren Bacall By Myself in 1978 (reprinted as By Myself and Then Some with additional material in 2006) and Now, published in 1994.  Both are still available on Amazon if you’d like to read them.

Here’s to Lauren Bacall, a true icon and a very talented lady.  Condolences to all who will miss her.

Image: Lauren Bacall via ign.com

#Lauren Bacall

Robin Williams 1951-2014

robin_by_reedsaxon_APRobin Williams has died at the age of 63 from an apparent suicide.  He had been dealing with severe depression.  He leaves his wife and three children.

His film Night At The Museum: Secret of the Tomb will be released in December.  His CBS television show co-starring Sarah Michelle Gellar, The Crazy Ones, did not get a second season pick-up.

Williams was trained at Julliard and won a supporting actor Oscar for Good Will Hunting.  From Mork and Mindy to Dead Poets Society to Good Morning, Vietnam, Williams was an extremely talented and versatile actor and comedian.

C&B sends condolences to Robin Williams’ fans, family and friends.  He will be missed.

Image: Reed Saxon, AP

#Robin Williams

Love It

tumblr_na0coqPIkv1tcw4lfo1_1280_PoM2

From Dreamworks’ Penguins of Madagascar website. 

#Penguins of Madagascar

ComicBookMovie.com got ahold of some cool Guardians of the Galaxy concept art by Anthony Francisco.  Be aware that if you click on this link you will see a spoiler for the first post-movie Easter egg.  If you haven’t seen the movie yet, what are you waiting for?  Because this weekend this happened:

Box Office: ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ Delivers $65 Million Debut, Sequel Announced (from Variety)

TMNT had a $65 million weekend in the U.S., $93.7 million including overseas.  (GOTG in its first weekend had $94 million in the U.S. and $66 million overseas for a total of $170 million.  Just sayin’.)  Guardians made another $41.5 million this past weekend in the U.S.  Overseas Guardians was #1 even where TMNT had debuted.  It’s looking like GOTG is on target for a total of over $313 million in its second weekend, while still rolling out in some overseas markets, reports Variety.

Apparently enough kids convinced their parents to take them to a Michael Bay movie because of the animated TMNT series (yeah, whatever kids – isn’t it time to get your butts back to school?), but I saw at least one little guy with better taste!  I was walking past the theater into the mall on Saturday when I saw a tyke running for all he was worth toward the poster of the movie he wanted.  He smacked his little hand right on Zoe Saldana’s Gamora.  Yeah, baby!  I see great things for that kid in the future.

As for Penguins of Madagascar, I have two words:  penguins Riverdancing.  That’s all you need to know.

OK, maybe not all.  The second trailer is below and as you will see contains some of the footage from the first one as well as some new scenes.  The movie comes out in November.

#PenguinsofMadagascar #GuardiansoftheGalaxy #GOTG

AwesomeMixVol1Vulture asked Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn how he chose the classic tunes on Peter Quill’s tape Awesome Mix Vol. 1.  Having the half-Earthling Quill carry around a Walkman with an old cassette tape from his late mother was genius; it not only gave the movie some cool tunes, but it gave the audience something to relate to in Gunn’s wacky outer-space opera of a film.

Plus, if you weren’t dancing in your seat a little bit when Redbone’s Come and Get Your Love (or that tune from The Jackson 5) came up, there’s something seriously wrong with you.

The first trailer had Blue Swede’s Hooked On A Feeling, causing the sales of that tune to skyrocket.  Gunn had originally planned to use that song for the scene on Morag (you know the one I’m talking about, I’m still not going to give spoilers yet), but ended up using Come and Get Your Love instead, which I think was perfect.

ELO (Electric Light Orchestra, for those that don’t know) were almost included in the soundtrack.  There was apparently a montage with Livin’ Thing, but it was cut.  Maybe it will show up in the extras on the DVD?  I hope so.  I love ELO.

I can’t wait to see what Gunn comes up with for GOTG2.  Here are some suggestions: The Gap Band’s You Dropped a Bomb On Me (1982); ELO’s Evil Woman (1975); AC/DC’s Back In Black — hey, Ronan! (1980); Van Halen’s Dance the Night Away (1979); The Bee Gee’s Stayin’ Alive (1977); Steve Miller Band’s Abracadabra (1982)… just to name a few off the top of my head.  But one song I sincerely hope makes it – the Footloose title tune.  Oh, yeah.

Speaking of Back in Black, NBC is currently using it for a promo for the second season of The Blacklist.

#Guardians of the Galaxy #GOTG

It’s World Cat Day!

My cats think every day is World Cat Day, but actually they’re only allotted one per year, and it’s today!

Where can we find some fun with felines today (or any day)?  Well, the internet wasn’t invented for nothing!  If you Google “cat video” you will get 720,000,000 results.

90% of those are probably funny, but we can always count on Henri, Le Chat Noir for the latest feline existential crisis.  Some “people” are just never happy!

EOnline has 22 .gifs to celebrate the day, including this one of Chris Pratt:
rs_500x255-140630102319-andycats

 

 

 

 

 

 

We can watch one of my personal all-time favorite internet cat videos, Jedi Kittens Strike Back by FinalCutKing (not to be confused with Jedi Squirrels):

Syracuse.com has some favorite internet cat videos, including Surprised Kitty, which gets my vote for cutest internet kitten video, maybe ever. (It’s been viewed over 74 million times.)

And happymedulla has a compilation of videos saluting a famous line from Gandalf, with cats showing those dogs who’s boss, just in case there was any doubt.

My cats?  They get a whole page on this blog to themselves (see “The Cats.”)  And probably extra treats.  Happy World Cat Day, Emily, Molly and Abigail!

If you’re in need of a cat (and who isn’t?) please consider rescue instead of going to a breeder.  You can find all kinds of fabulous felines at Petfinder.com, or visit your local shelter.  Be sure to spay or neuter, and keep them inside for safety.

#WorldCatDay

lee_pace_via_exposayHe’s been a very busy guy, that Lee Pace, the last couple of years.  Currently he’s Ronan in Guardians of the Galaxy, Joe MacMillan in the just-finished first series of AMC’s Halt and Catch Fire, and this December he reappears as Elvenking Thranduil in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.  Oh, and he also has a supporting role in an upcoming Lance Armstrong biopic, Icon.

With the exception of Halt and Catch Fire, these have been supporting or ensemble roles.  His next role will be in the sci-fi flick Prisoners of War, which co-stars Berenice Marlohe (the babe in Skyfall), according to Empire.  Pace’s previous movie starring role was in 2006’s The Fall, where he had dual roles.  It’s an odd flick in ways, but he gave an excellent performance as two very different characters.

In Prisoners of War, Pace will play an American soldier who with Marlohe’s French foreign aid worker try to save Earth from an alien invasion.

Image: Lee Pace via Exposay

#LeePace

Teaser_archersTheOneRing.net (TORn) has a shot-by-shot breakdown of the teaser trailer for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, as well as a slideshow of each shot.  Excellent job by TORn.

Also, there’s an extended edition version of The Desolation of Smaug out on Amazon now if you want to pre-order.  I think I will wait to see what other editions become available, especially since I don’t have a Blu-ray player.  Buying the Blu-ray will get you the regular DVD but right now they don’t have that listed separately.

Image: Elven archers in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

#TheHobbit #BOTFA

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