That’s a Wrap: The Week in Movies

Here’s a sequel over 30 years in the making. Tom Cruise revealed to Aussie talk show Sunrise that there will be a sequel to Top Gun. The actor stated, “I’m gonna start filming it probably in the next year. I know, it’s happening. It’s definitely happening.”

Javier Bardem as a literal movie monster? Yeah, that’s going to happen, as the actor is reportedly in line to take on the role of Frankenstein’s monster in the Bill Condon-directed Bride of Frankenstein, which was announced for a Valentine’s Day release in 2019.

Jack Kesy has reportedly landed the role of a major villain in the upcoming Deadpool 2. Deadline reports that it’s believed Kesy will play a character named Black Tom. In the X-Men comics, his character is a mutant who can manipulate, bond with and project energy through plant life.

Universal has revealed that there will be a sequel for the recent animated hit Boss Baby, with Boss Baby 2 now set for March 26, 2021. Alec Baldwin will return to voice the titular character, but no other casting details have been announced.

Mamma Mia, there’s more?! Nearly a decade after Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth and Stellan Skarsgard wooed Meryl Streep in a film version of the musical Mamma Mia, there’s talk of a sequel. Dark Horizons reports that The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel writer Ol Parker will pen a film titled Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again that’s expected to feature some of the first film’s cast with some ABBA songs not featured in the original expected to make their debut in the franchise. Look for the film to arrive July 20, 2018.

Sony Pictures is getting in business with Charlie. According to Variety, Elizabeth Banks will direct a reboot of Charlie’s Angels that is set for a June 7, 2019 release. No casting news for the film has been revealed as of yet.

Willem Dafoe is set to take on the role of acclaimed artist Vincent van Gogh in the upcoming film At Eternity’s Gate. Deadline reports that Julian Schnabel is co-writing the script with Jean-Claude Carriere and he’ll also direct. The film centers on Van Gogh’s time in Arles and Auvers-sur-Oise, France.

Speaking of well-known figures in history, Variety reports that Jessica Chastain has been cast as movie icon Ingrid Bergman in the upcoming film Seducing Ingrid Bergman. The film centers on Bergman’s romance with photo journalist Robert Capa and is set in the aftermath of World War II.

Deadline reports that Spider-Man Homecoming star Tom Holland has been cast in Uncharted, a prequel to the Naughty Dog video game for PlayStation. The treasure-hunting film will be directed by Shawn Levy and features the young thief Drake (Holland) and his first encounter with the professional rogue Sullivan.

Annabelle Wallis has joined the cast of Tag. Wallis, who also stars in the upcoming film The Mummy, will play a reporter who looks into the story of the lifelong friends who have been playing a game of tag for the last 30 years. Jeremy Renner, Ed Helms, Jake Johnson and Hannibal Buress also star in the film.

Screenwriter Taylor Sheridan will reportedly get his film directorial debut with the upcoming film Wind River. The film stars Jeremy Renner as a local lawman who teams with a federal agent (Elizabeth Olsen) to investigate the death of a murdered girl whose body was discovered on a barren stretch of land in a Wyoming reservation. The movie is on target for an Aug. 4 release.

That’s a Wrap: The Week in TV News

Congrats to NBC, as the peacock network has come out on top of all broadcast networks with an overall 2.1 demo rating. This marks the first time in five years that any network has won the overall ratings race without the benefit of having the Super Bowl or the Olympics. Fox finished second for the year, followed by CBS, ABC and the CW.

So with ABC announcing a Roseanne return, how will they address the original series’ finale where it was revealed that John Goodman‘s Dan had died of a heart attack? A source tells TV Line, “They’re going to pretend like it never even happened.” The source went on to add that most of everything that happened in the finale will be ignored when the show returns in the spring of 2018.

Saturday nights will no longer be live for a trio of “not ready for prime time players.” It’s been revealed that Bobby Moynihan, Vanessa Bayer and Sasheer Zamata are all leaving Saturday Night Live, which opens the door for new talent to be added to the show.

NBC has renewed the John Lithgow-starring court comedy Trial & Error for a second season. The show also stars Nicholas D’Agosto as a New York lawyer who relocates to a small southern town where he defends Lithgow’s character of the murder of his wife.

Will Selena Meyer sniff the presidency once again? That remains to be seen, but HBO will keep viewers following her fate as they’ve renewed the Julia Louis-Dreyfus-starring series Veep for a seventh season.

Also over at HBO, the premium cable channel has picked up Silicon Valley for a fifth season. However, it was revealed that original cast member TJ Miller, who plays Incubator honcho Erlich Bachman, is exiting ahead of the new season.

Netflix has decided not to pick up the Baz Lurhmann backed music drama The Get Down for a second season. Though receiving decent reviews, the series was among Netflix’s most expensive shows with the first season costing around $120 million to make.

TNT has revealed the return date for The Last Ship, which comes back for Season 4 with a two-hour premiere Aug. 20 at 9PM ET/PT.

You can add Vera Farmiga as the latest name to join the anthology series Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams. Variety reports that Farmiga will star in an episode titled “Kill All Others” as a politician who makes a shocking statement endorsing violence, while The Last Man on Earth‘s Mel Rodriguez finds himself an instant target after questioning her comments. Other actors already cast for installments in the series include Bryan Cranston, Steve Buscemi, Anna Paquin, Terrence Howard, Greg Kinnear, Mireille Enos, Jack Reynor, Benedict Wong and more.

Actor John Barrowman has revealed that he won’t be returning to Arrow for Season 6. The actor, who portrayed Malcolm Merlyn, revealed the news in an Instagram posting.

Deadline is reporting that Sophia Bush will be exiting the NBC series Chicago P.D. The show recently wrapped its fourth season with her character being faced with a decision of whether to accept a job with the FBI in New York.

Meanwhile, Chicago is not big enough for all of us! NBC has announced that freshman drama Chicago Justice will not be renewed for a second season. There are already three “Chicago” series for the network. It is not known if Jon Seda, who carried over from Chicago P.D., will return to the series that spawned the spinoff.

Netflix has announced a new eight-episode series titled Friends From College with a promising cast. The show features a group of Harvard friends approaching their forties. The series stars Colbie Smulders, Keegan-Michael Key, Annie Parisse, Nat Faxon, Fred Savage and Jae Suh Park.

No Lie: Lucy Hale Can Get ‘Pretty’ Confused!

For seven seasons, Pretty Little Liars has been a mainstay of the Freeform (formerly ABC Family) lineup. Over the course of its 150+ episodes, it’s provided plenty of shocking moments as the storyline’s taken numerous turns. If you find yourself needing a scorecard to keep track of all the plot twists, you’re not alone. Even one of the show’s stars, Lucy Hale, has had trouble keeping up with all of the changes! (Click on the media bar below to hear Lucy Hale)

Pretty Little Liars will air its series finale on June 27; you can catch the remaining episodes Tuesday nights at 8/7c on Freeform.

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Posted by: AC

Blake Lively Signs On To CBS Films Thriller ‘The Husband’s Secret’


Blake Lively uncovered (and hid) her share of secrets on the CW series Gossip Girl, and now she’s executive producing and starring in The Husband’s Secret. The thriller, based on the best selling novel by Liane Moriarty (Big Little Lies), is also being produced by filmmakers Chris and Paul Weitz (via their production company Depth of Field).

The story centers on Cecilia Fitzpatrick (Lively), a perfectionist wife and mother who discovers a devastating secret that her husband has hid from her for years.

Liane Moriarty has established herself as one of the defining voices of the modern woman and Blake Lively’s unique combination of vulnerability, strength and extraordinary talent makes her the perfect actress to realize Moriarty’s creation,” said CBS Films president Terry Press.

Lively’s previous film credits include The Town, The Age of Adaline, and The Shallows.

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi

Sci-Fi Indie ’96 Souls’ Captures Sights (And Smells) of Los Angeles

96soulsThe new feature 96 Souls centers on Jack Sutree (Grinnell Morris) who is able to visualize the fragrances from various substances. It’s a weird “superpower” to have (Suttree attains the skill after a lab accident), and it’s put to the test after a chance encounter with a homeless musician (Toyin Moses) who’s in search of her mother.

Though the movie’s premise of seeing smells and fragrances is fantastical, writer-director Stanley Jacobs grounded much of his story in reality. “With every thing that happened, I tried to have some type of scientific basis. Even though (96 Souls has) sci-fi (elements), there was some type of relationship to science so it’s not too inconceivable,” said Jacobs. “That was one of the reasons I took a classic approach to shooting the film. There’s not a lot of handheld shots – we wanted to create a real world so this maybe this stuff could be somewhat believable and pull viewers into the film a little more.”

Shooting an indie film has its share of challenges, and Jacobs upped the difficulty level by shooting 96 Souls all throughout Los Angeles (he had 20 locations in a 23 day shoot) to give his project visual breadth. Having tons of set-ups with little time, however, doesn’t compare with finding a suitable home for his movie.

“I had made to go with the distributor (Gravitas Ventures) that I went with because they’re an aggregator and they had instant access to a lot of places and I really want the film to be seen,” said Jacobs, whose love for movies began at an early age after watching Journey to the Center of the Earth and The 7th Voyage of Sinbad. “But the big challenge on a film like this without a big name in it or a subject matter doesn’t set the world on fire, is it’s working against you because everyone is looking for a name to exploit and that hot topic. That’s where all the eyes are with the festivals and the distributors. I understand that, to some extent, because it makes their marketing easier. When you have something that’s different from the norm, and it’s original and has unknowns, that’s a much more difficult thing to market.”

Jacobs knows that his passion for cinema doesn’t mean a 100% fidelity to shooting on film. He shot 96 Souls on the RED DRAGON camera and was more than happy with the result. “As much as I love film, and I’m the first one to love the look of film, you’re life is much better with digital,”said Jacobs who also helmed the documentary Pitch People. “Things are much easier plus you can get a film look with it – I don’t care what anyone says. Almost every digital film that comes out now has incredible mastery to it as long as the people in charge have that eye and they use the right tools. There’s so many more things you can do (with filmmaking).

96 Souls opens in select theaters today and will be available on VOD and all other digital platforms on May 30.

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi