‘THOR 2’ TO BRING BOX-OFFICE THUNDER IN SUMMER 2013


THORWhen a superhero film makes over $437 million worldwide, the popular choice is to immediately green light a sequel, and that bit of good news has fallen on Thor’s doorstep, as Deadline reports that Marvel Studios has given the thumbs up for Thor 2. However, Kenneth Branagh is not returning to direct the second installment, and a source tells Deadline that the split was “mutual and amicable.”

Although I didn’t completely buy the chemistry between Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman, Hemsworth proved more than capable as the God of Thunder, and his sibling rivalry with Tom Hiddleston (Loki) and daddy issues with Anthony Hopkins (Odin) elevated the feature beyond standard comic book fare.  Thor 2 is set for a Summer 2013 release. (Click on the media bar below to hear Hemsworth talk about preparing for the role of Thor)

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‘THE GUARD’S’ DON CHEADLE OFFERS UP SOBERING SHOWBIZ ADVICE

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Don Cheadle’s career continues to flourish, as his latest feature, The Guard, opens in limited release July 29th.  Earlier this week, the actor’s production company (Crescendo Productions) signed a one year, first look deal with Showtime, and next month he starts work on the freshman Showtime series House of Lies, which co-stars Kristen Bell.  To top it all off, Cheadle is tentatively set to start work on Iron Man 3 in February (the picture comes out May 3rd, 2013) and there is even discussions of a War Machine spin-off.

With such a first rate body of work and more material in the pipeline, one would expect Cheadle to give encouraging advice to newbies eager to see their name in lights (or in these days, a home theater flat screen).  However, Cheadle believes it’s tougher to succeed these days thanks to the “corporate mentality” of the studio system and the financial crisis.  (Click on the media bar below to hear Cheadle give some sobering thoughts on the state of the entertainment industry)

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MICHAEL BAY LOVED WORKING WITH 3D FOR ‘DARK OF THE MOON’

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Michael Bay was initially hesitant to shoot Transformers: Dark of the Moon on 3D, but he made the leap after a bit of urging from James Cameron and Steven Spielberg.  It was a creative gamble which paid of for the filmmaker, as Bay believes his latest film is the strongest installment of the franchise.  (Click on the media bar below to hear Bay talk about shooting the picture in 3D).

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In its opening day, Transformers: Dark of the Moon made $37.2 million.

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MISSY PEREGRYM AND GREGORY SMITH TALK ‘ROOKIE BLUE’

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Gregory Smith (Everwood) and Missy Peregrym (Reaper) play cops who face various challenges on the job in the series Rookie Blue. Smith, who describes the show as an optimistic and character driven program, says he now has a different attitude towards police officers.  (Click on the media bar bar to hear Smith and Peregrym talk about police officers).

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A new episode of Rookie Blue airs tonight (ABC, 10 pm et/pt), as Andy (Peregrym) and Gail (Gail Sullivan) go undercover at a club.  Meanwhile, a complaint is filed against Dov (Smith).

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MELISSA JOAN HART LOVES “BEING SILLY” WITH ‘MELISSA & JOEY’

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New episodes of the first season of Melissa & Joey resume tonight (ABC Family 8 pm et/pt), and one of the program’s biggest assets is the innate chemistry between its leads, Melissa Joan Hart and Joey Lawrence. Both stars have been working on television since the 1980s, and after their success on the ABC Family Movie My Fake Fiance, a series seemed inevitable.

The show features Hart as a local politician who hires a male nanny (Lawrence) to help her raise her two kids.  Melissa & Joey marks Hart’s first TV series since Sabrina, The Teenage Witch, and she recently talked about what she missed most about working on a TV set.  (Click on the media bar below and listen to Hart)

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