Covering Cinema From All Across The African Diaspora

Depp & Hoffman For Next Batman Movie?

Given the original source, I'd say this is just a rumor, or someone over there simply putting their wishlist in print. But, I definitely dig both choices; and if indeed this turns out to be fact, the next installment of the Dark Knight series could be quite a thrill!

From Showbiz Spy:

- JOHNNY DEPP is tipped to play BATMAN villain THE RIDDLER in the next installment of the comic book movie series. After the huge success of The Dark Knight, which has taken $440 million at the worldwide box office, producers are confident they can convince Depp to take on Christian Bale's Batman on the big screen. And, according to the National Enquirer, studio bosses also want Oscar winner Philip Seymour Hoffman onboard to play another of the Caped Crusader's arch-foe, the Penguin. A source tells the Enquirer, "(Producers) are convinced that the role of the Riddler is perfect for Depp. Johnny's a pro. He'll be able to take direction from director Chris Nolan and still make the character his own. And what better Penguin is there than Philip Seymour Hoffman."

Both the Riddler and the Penguin have seen life on the big screen - the Riddler played by Jim Carrey in the horrible, horrible, horrible Batman Forever in 1995, and Danny Devito as the Penguin in the so-so Batman Returns of 1992. A Depp, Hoffman combo under Nolan's direction, from a sound script, would (or should) put the previous 2 reincarnations to shame. So, I hope this rumor isn't just a rumor, or wishful thinking.


Coming Soon - Austin Powers 4

So what do you do when you sense that your once rising star is starting to quickly fall? Easy! You return to an old favorite. And that's exactly what Mike Myers is planning on doing.

His last outing, The Love Guru, was heavily critically panned and a box office failure. Thus, rather than make a successive attempt into new territory, the former SNL star is said to be reviving his mostly successful Austin Powers series.

While the news does nothing but elicit a big yawn out of me, I can't argue with the likely financial reasons Myers wants to bring Dr Evil and company back. All 3 previous films have grossed an average of about $225 Million each, worldwide, despite individual budgets in the $16 to $60 Million range. With numbers like that, and not even including DVD sales, it's safe to say each film was certainly very profitable for the responsible studio, and Myers.

According to Deadline Hollywood Daily, there's no deal in place yet with any studio, but New Line is reportedly heavily courting the project. Myers has started writing the script for Austin Powers 4 which is said to be an homage to his father, with this next installment focusing on the relationship between Dr. Evil and his son (introduced already as Scott Evil, played by Seth Green).

No word on whether Beyonce will be back as Foxy Cleopatra, who's apparently, "a whole lotta woman!"

Once again... Yawn...! Myers's career could start to resemble another SNL alum's seemingly downward spiral... Eddie Murphy.


Trailer - 'The Wolfman'

Well... more like the bootleg version of it. The trailer hasn't been officially unleashed for mass consumption, but some sneaky devil with a recording device captured it all for the rest of us to admire, at last weekends Comic-Con Convention in San Diego, CA, which was honored with a Wolfman panel that included the film's main cast, Benicio del Toro and Emily Blunt, along with visual effects master, Rick Baker. And during their conversation with the audience, a surprise trailer of the film was shown, which you can see below.

Despite the 3rd grade quality of the video (it's a recording after all), I must say, I like what I see there. I love the look and feel of it all - dark, gothic, rich, complex. And with such a talented cast, including Anthony Hopkins and Hugo Weaving, it should be a good show when it bows in theatres next spring!

See my original post about the film, including synopsis, HERE.

Here ya go:


And Here We Go Once Again...!

So, I just heard that lots of people are squirming at the newly released Ludacris tune that's essentially a battle cry for Obama's candidacy, and some are calling for Obama to denounce Ludacris as well as the track in which he calls Hillary a bitch, and says that McCain doesn't belong in any chair unless he's paralyzed, plus jabs at Jesse Jackson and George Bush, accompanied by the usual chest-pounding male bravado, etc, etc, etc... Hillary supporters of course are enraged, with her former campaign finance co-chair stating, "I hope Senator Obama has the presence of mind to denounce and distance himself from Ludacris."

As we all probably read previously, when Obama revealed his iTunes library to the world in Rolling Stone Magazine recently, Ludacris is one of his faves, calling both he and Jay-Z "great talents and great businessmen." I'm sure the Repubes will have a field day with this one, although Obama's camp quickly released the following statement: "As Barack Obama has said many, many times in the past, rap lyrics today too often perpetuate misogyny, materialism, and degrading images that he doesn't want his daughters or any children exposed to. This song is not only outrageously offensive to Senator Clinton, Reverend Jackson, Senator McCain, and President Bush, it is offensive to all of us who are trying to raise our children with the values we hold dear. While Ludacris is a talented individual he should be ashamed of these lyrics."

The Ludacris track is immediately below, followed by the printed lyrics at the very bottom of this post.


I'm back on it like I just signed my record deal Yeah the best is here, the Bentley Coup paint is dripping wet, it got sex appeal Never should have hated You never should've doubted him With a slot in the president's iPod Obama shattered 'em

Said I handled his biz and I'm one of his favorite rappers Well give Luda a special pardon if I'm ever in the slammer Better yet put him in office, make me your vice president Hillary hated on you, so that bitch is irrelevant

Jesse talking slick and apologizing for what? If you said it then you meant it how you want it have a gut! And all you other politicians trying to hate on my man, watch us win a majority vote in every state on my man

You can't stop what's bout to happen, we bout to make history The first black president is destined and it's meant to be The threats ain't fazing us, the nooses or the jokes So get off your ass, black people, it's time to get out and vote!

Paint the White House black and I'm sure that's got 'em terrified McCain don't belong in any chair unless he's paralyzed Yeah I said it cause Bush is mentally handicapped Ball up all of his speeches and I throw 'em like candy wrap 'cause what you talking I hear nothing even relevant and you the worst of all 43 presidents

Get out and vote or the end will be near The world is ready for change because Obama is here! 'cause Obama is here The world is ready for change because Obama is here!


Alicia Keys As Agent 355

Well, maybe... maybe not. But the producer of the adaptation wants her in the role, and given how meaty a role it is, it'll be hard for her to say no, if offered.

Yet another graphic novel adaptation is in the works, which certainly shouldn't be a surprise to any of you anymore. This time it's another critically acclaimed fanboy/fangirl classic titled, Y: The Last Man. In the comic book series, Yorick Brown, a young amateur escape artist, and his monkey, Ampersand, suddenly become the last two men on earth after something mysterious wipes out every mammal on the planet possessing a Y chromosome - including embryos, fertilized eggs, and even sperm. Society is plunged into chaos as infrastructures collapse and the surviving women everywhere try to cope with the loss of the men. Yorick goes on a mission to find his girlfriend Beth, who was on vacation in Australia, and we go along with him on that expedition, accompanied by his body guard, Agent 355, the role Alicia Keys would play
, who works for a secretive US government agency.

The character is listed 2nd in the list of credits, indicative of how substantial the role is. I haven't read the graphic novel, although I plan to, but every rendition I've seen of Agent 355 presents her as a black woman. Yorick is, naturally, a white man, who will be played by the current young "it" guy, Shia Labeouf, whose name seems to show up attached to every new project I read about.

From the little I've read about the character, I'm not so sure Alicia is right for the role. Agent 355 is pretty much a bad-ass chick! She kicks ass, confidently handling a variety of weapons. The closest Keys has come to a character like that in her fledgling acting career, was as Georgia Sykes in Smokin' Aces (2006), a film I didn't care for, although I don't recall her performance much. I'd rather see an ACTRESS in the role, like maybe Taraji P Henson, whom I think would be much more convincing. Or how about going with an unknown? Given the film's 2010 expected release date, I wouldn't be surprised to see Zoe Saldana thrown into the mix since her turn as Uhura in 2009's Star Trek movie might have increased awareness of her by the time Y: The Last Man comes around.

As long as it's not a white actress in blackface...


Queen Victoria's Undies Sell At Auction For $17,000

Whoa - just 5 feet tall, but with a 50-inch waist and 66-inch bust? Holy damn!

Suffice it to say that her royal highness was what we in contemporary American society would call THICK! Although, it's not obvious in all the images I've seen of her.

LONDON — A pair of Queen Victoria's bloomers, with a 50-inch waist, were snapped up for $9,000 by a Canadian buyer at a central England auction Wednesday. Auctioneer Charles Hanson said Queen Victoria's underpants belonged to "a very big lady of quite small stature with a very wide girth." She was said to be 5 feet tall. The handmade knickers, which date back to the 1890s, bear the monogram "VR" for Victoria Regina. They are open-crotch style, with separate legs joined by a drawstring at the waist, a popular style in the late Victorian era. The royal drawers belonged to a family in western England whose ancestor was a lady-in-waiting for the queen. Also up for auction was Queen Victoria's chemise, with a 66-inch bust, sold for $8,000. Her nightgown sold for $11,000.

Queen Victoria lived from 1819 to 1901. She became queen at age 18 and was the U.K.'s longest-reigning monarch.


Let My Own Lack Of A Voice Be Heard

Damn! With the recent rash of self-detructive acts that I've read about involving men and women in some form of financial hardship (the man who cut off his own head to avoid losing his house, the woman who shot herself dead to avoid foreclosure on her home), I can only assume that M. Night Shyamalan's, The Happening may have actually been a foretelling... if that's a gust of wind I hear... something is indeed in the air...

And today, this happens:

- A Newark man frustrated with the volume of late payment notices and collection calls he received from a Bloomfield Rent-A-Center store, walked into the business Tuesday and set himself ablaze in front of several employees and customers. "He basically pulled out a bottle of lighter fluid, poured it all over his body, pulled out a cigarette lighter and lit himself on fire," Bloomfield Police Capt. Chris Goul said. Employees rushed to get water to extinguish the blaze. The 62-year-old man, Emilio Saladriagas, was taken to the burn unit at Saint Barnabas Medical Center and was listed in critical condition late Tuesday. Saladriagas arrived at the store and asked to speak with a manager about letters he'd received on late payments. When he was told a manager wasn't available he became upset and pulled out the lighter fluid...

Ok.. I see... maybe he had just watched Waking Life... you know what they say about life imitating art:


McCain: Obama = Britney Spears, Paris Hilton

Oh those dastardly Republicans and the "sleight of hand" shows they continue to wow us with... including the clip below - McCain's newest campaign ad, like all the others, doing all it can to throw some wrinkles into the international Obama love-fest... this time, comparing him to Britney Spears and Paris Hilton! As Huffingon Post's Ryan J. Davis puts it, "John McCain's newest ad shows Barack Obama being adored by 200,000 Germans during his recent trip abroad. In the ad... John McCain raises an important question: Is Barack Obama too well-liked and respected around the world to be president? Why would any American want their president to bring out the world's best feelings about America?! John McCain is hedging his bid for the presidency on the idea that Americans want a president who inspires all the world to burn American flags."

Ewan McGregor Finds African Trek Oddly Peaceful

Well, whoulda thunk it? You mean it's not all harum scarum, murder and mayhem over there? Are you serious. Wow, I had no idea...

From Yahoo News:

Actors Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman braved the specter of armed kidnappers and fierce hyenas when they set out on a motorcycle journey in Africa but what they encountered was quite different: little violence and curious kids. A documentary film, "Long Way Down," which shows just how peaceful their journey was, will enjoy a brief run in theaters starting on Thursday, then appear on television on the Fox Reality Channel beginning on Saturday. McGregor, 37... said the documentary of his three-month trek from Scotland to South Africa upends many past portrayals of Africa. "We are bombarded with two things, images of famine and wildlife, and we (McGregor and Boorman) always felt that there's a lot of other sides to that continent and I hope that we showed that," he told Reuters.

I'm reminded of Bill O'Reilly's comments last September on his radio show, relating his experience - apparently his first - in Sylvia's, a black-owned and operated restaurant in Harlem, stating, "I couldn't get over the fact that there was no difference between Sylvia's restaurant and any other restaurant in New York City. I mean, it was exactly the same, even though it's run by blacks, primarily black patronship... There wasn't one person in Sylvia's who was screaming, 'M-Fer, I want more iced tea.'"

Even though McGregor's response to his expedition doesn't come off as smug as O'Reilly's did, it's still a reminder of just how insular we really are, especially those of us in the west, pummelled by biased local media companies, from where the majority of us get the bulk of our news about the rest of the world, creating an unfortunate mass of rather xenophobic, uninformed citizens.

If only we could all be like Matt :o)

Business As Usual For The NYPD...

What a week it's been for New York's finest, huh? In both instances, the officers have been assigned to desk duty while each incident is being "investigated."

July 29th:

July 25th:

Take us out KRS-ONE:

Trailer - 'The Princess & The Frog'

After all the controversy that has accompanied the production of the animated feature notable for giving us Disney's first ever black princess, the studio has finally given us a peek at what The Princess And The Frog will look like, probably in an effort to counter all the criticism it's received for it's alleged insensitive characterizations - as if to say, "look, it's not as bad as people are saying it will be," even though the film doesn't open for another year-and-a-half!

This doesn't give us much, after all it's only a teaser, so I can't say a lot bout what I see here. In time, we will learn more. But if everything I've read about it thus far remains true by the time of the film's release in December 2009, then Disney's PR deparment should prepare for a hectic year ahead.

I'm Sorry... So Sorry... Please Accept My Apology

My immediate response to this was, "so the hell what?" What does it mean? Does this really change anything? It's about 150 years too late, isn't it. I certainly wasn't one of those people hoping for an eventual formal apology from any arm of the government.

If my mother were still alive, she'd smack my hand and remind me of the importance of knowing how to accept an apology. So, in her honor only, I say to the House of Representatives, I accept your apology...

*Rolling my eyes*

Now where are my freaking reparations :o)

From HuffPo:

- The House on Tuesday issued an unprecedented apology to black Americans for the wrongs committed against them and their ancestors who suffered under slavery and Jim Crow segregation laws.

"Today represents a milestone in our nation's efforts to remedy the ills of our past," said Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, D-Mich., chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus.

The resolution, passed by voice vote, was the work of Tennessee Democrat Steve Cohen, the only white lawmaker to represent a majority black district. Cohen faces a formidable black challenger in a primary face-off next week.

Congress has issued apologies before to Japanese-Americans for their internment during World War II and to native Hawaiians for the overthrow of the Hawaiian kingdom in 1893. In 2005, the Senate apologized for failing to pass anti-lynching laws.

Five states have issued apologies for slavery, but past proposals in Congress have stalled, partly over concerns that an apology would lead to demands for reparations payment for damages.

The Cohen resolution does not mention reparations. It does commit the House to rectifying "the lingering consequences of the misdeeds committed against African-Americans under slavery and Jim Crow."

The last sentence above carries much more weight than any apology ever will. What's that age-old aphorism... oh yeah... actions speak louder than words.

Take us away Brenda Lee:

The rest here: House Formally Apologizes For Slavery And Jim Crow

The Safe Sex License

I can't fathom this actually working as described below. Sex is such primal, instinctual, freeing act. While I applaud and support the company's safe sex mission statement, their Safe Sex License turns what would normally be a passionate, emotional act into something that feels rather mechanical, and that sucks (no pun intended)!

And besides that, will anyone actually use this thing? If a woman I was about to have sex with presented me with her very own Safe Sex License, I think I'd actually have a good laugh first, and then put on a freaking condom - which is what I would do anyway!

Also, might this actually be encouraging un-protected sex?


- Bklyn-based STF promotes responsible uglies-bumping via a Safe Sex License, a clinically backed, wallet-sized photo ID that says "I'm so clean, the condom should wear me". How it works: sign up online, download the clinic verification form, and get tested; mail the results to STF, and they'll send a card w/ your unique member ID and photo (remember: nothing says "trust me" like Blue Steel). Then simply hand the card to whomever, reveal your secret password and ID, and tell him/her to dial the card's 1-800 number; he/she will then be privy to the dates and results of your last two HIV/AIDS tests, irrefutable proof that you were disease-free on at least two specific occasions in the past. STF also provides accounts for herpes, gonorrhea, and other STDs that require more frequent testing.

If you're so inclined, you can Sign up to receive your own license at

Trailer - 'Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince'

Ok. I admit it. I've read one or two Harry Potter books since inception. I've even seen all the movie adaptations too. Yeah, I know... shameful, right?

No - not really, so sue me or get over it :o)

Below is the just released teaser trailer for the next film in the series, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, which hits theatres in November. Obviously, as Potter ages, each successive film grows darker in atmosphere. An R-rated Harry Potter movie might not be completely out of the question, sometime down the road... ok... probably not.

Watch Harry as he begins his sixth year at Hogwarts, while Lord Voldemort wreaks havoc throughout Britain!

GOP Compares Obama To Hasselhoff

sseOh man... it's obvious that the Republicans have completely run out of ideas, and have not much else to sting Obama's reputation with.

Altogether now... say it loud and say it proud... President Barack Obama!

From HuffPo:

- In the clearest sign yet that the Republicans have all but given up on even pretending that they have ideas worth selling to the American people, the Republican National Committee has sunk time and money into this ad, their "best guess" at what an "Obama ad in Berlin" might look like. Apparently, their best guess is founded on the twin precepts that Germans enjoy techno music and that in a crowd of 200,000 people, it's possible to find someone with "Marxist" friends. Even though it has nothing to do with Germans or Marxism or Berlin, the makers of this ad saw fit to include a woefully dated kicker of Obama yelling, "I'm king of the world!" Appropriately: a Titanic joke from a bunch of titanic jokes.


Judge Judy Cameras Capture California Earthquake

Incase you haven't heard, a massive earthquake hit Southern California earlier today, and the Judge Judy show cameras provided us with a straw's view of the event. Rumor is that none of the Dark Knight screenings in the area saw any similar activity as in the clip below :o)

Tuesday Funnies - Forrest Love?

Those wild and crazy environmentalists over at GreenPeace... what will they ever think of next to get our attention? Tut-tut-tut...

Asimov's 'Foundation' Getting Celluloid Treatment

I'm an Isaac Asimov fan. I've read several of his novels - some, many times over.

The last time an attempt was made on the celluloid life of one of his ideas, it starred Will Smith, along with a shitload of sub-par CGI effects, and the results left a sour taste in my mouth.

That episode is nowhere nearly as ambitious as the next Asimov work I just learned is set to come to a theatre near you soon - his epic masterwork titled, Foundation.

Asimov wrote the Foundation Series over a forty-year period, between the 1940s and 1980s. It's made up of seven connected volumes, although each can be read individually. The volume is highly acclaimed, winning the one-time Hugo Award for "Best All-Time Series" in 1966.

Foundation centers on a society that has learned how to predict its future based on a method called psychohistory, and sets up a foundation devoted to scientific research to protect itself and ensure its survival.

It's infused with political and philosophical themes, spans hundreds of years, essentially tracking the rise and fall of entire civilizations, and each book contains a new set of characters, all of which pose a multitude of challenges for a big-screen adaptation.

So to Bob Shaye and Michael Lynne, both formely of the now defunct New Line Cinema, I wish you lots of luck! Foundation has millions of devout fans across the globe who wouldn't hesitate to string you both up by your testicles if you fail in your attempt.

I'm just saying...


Los Angeles To Vote On Fast Food Ban

Big brother at work... with attempts like these, I think it's only a matter of time before socialized healthcare becomes de jure.

From HuffPo:

- In the impoverished neighborhood of South Los Angeles, fast food is the easiest cuisine to find - and that's a problem for elected officials who see it as an unhealthy source of calories and cholesterol.

The City Council was poised to vote Tuesday on a moratorium on new fast-food restaurants in a swath of the city where a proliferation of such eateries goes hand-in-hand with obesity.

"Our communities have an extreme shortage of quality foods," City Councilman Bernard Parks said.

The aim of the yearlong moratorium, which was approved last week in committee, is to give the city time to try to attract restaurants that serve healthier food.

The California Restaurant Association says the moratorium, which could be extended up to two years, is misguided.

Fast food "is the only industry that wants to be in South LA," said association spokesman Andrew Casana. "Sit-down restaurants don't want to go in. If they did, they'd be there. This moratorium isn't going to help them relocate."

The rest here: L.A. FAST FOOD BAN

One Cannot Cheat Fate, Said The Fatalist

Busy, busy, busy... but not in the Bokononist sense, of course...

Sorry folks! Busy day today for me. I'm all over the place. So, posting probably won't happen until sometime later in the day. Although, from the bits and pieces of news and views I've skimmed through so far, there isn't a lot of substance to report on, other than the usual Obama/McCain inanity (November, where are you?), and ridiculously excessive coverage of the current tribulations of Amy Whinehouse, Lindsay Lohan, and a few others (yawn... do readers actually demand coverage of this kind of frivolity? It's overkill!).

Anywho... break time is over... back to being busy again.
I'll be back later!

Harvey Weinstein Blog Entry #2

Harvey responds to commenters who read his first entry (which I posted HERE), revealing his "softer" side.

From Porfolio:

- When Bob and I first decided to try and bring art-house and foreign films to mainstream theaters, we knew we were going to have to come up with some fresh and innovative marketing techniques to convince people that a film like Cinema Paradiso could be as accessible and enjoyable as a film like E.T. We quickly learned that one way to get people into the seats was by making them feel a part of the film - whether that meant encouraging everyone to do their part and keep the shocking secret in The Crying Game or more recently holding a contest with MySpace to give fans a chance to appear in the credits of Clerks II. So with that in mind, I just wanted to engage some of our readers and address some of the questions and comments that came through.

The rest here: Harvey Blog 2

The Way We Were - Interview: Spike Lee

Spike, then... for comparison...

From the UK Guardian:

In early 1993 the Spike Lee's Malcolm X bio-pic was released in Britain. Novelist Howard Jacobson warily interviews Spike, but determined to tackle him on accusations of anti-semitism - and the 'd.i.c.k. thang.'

Malcolm X opens so spiritedly you think it's going to be a musical. A mock-up of Boston's Roxbury district in the Forties. Cats in zoot suits. And Spike Lee himself shuckin' and jivin' so hard he's almost horizontal to the sidewalk.

Our interview is more muted. We're in a bedroom of the St James's Club, Mayfair. Neutral territory. Neutered territory. And the only one shuckin' and jivin' is me. How do you talk to a black man? How do you talk to a politicised black man? How do you talk to a politicised black man if you're a politicised Jew? Actually, I'm not a politicised Jew, but I am when I'm talking to a politicised black man. The method I hit on is to swear. Street-talk. I say 'shit' three times before he's had the chance to sit down. Soon I'll be dropping in 'motherfucker'. Spike'll like that.

Spike Lee comes with a bad reputation. He loses his temper with journalists. Advises them on what they ought to read. Gives monosyllabic answers. Or no answers. When he's bored with you, they say, he yawns in your face. What will I do if he yawns in my face? Will I take it racially? A black/Jewish thing? Over and above the universal feud that all blacks are having with all Jews at the moment, he's been caught up in one of his own. After he was accused of peddling anti-semitism in Mo' Better Blues he announced his intention of beginning his next film, Jungle Fever, with a personal address to the camera: 'All you enlightened beings who feel I'm anti-semitic can kiss my black ass.' I take that to have been a joke, whatever the hat says. The scene never appeared in the Jungle Fever I saw, however. Spike must have thought better of it.

We have a soft spot for blacks, we Jews. It may not always show, but we have it. Don't be fooled by all the schwarze talk. Forget about who owns the stores and what we say we'll do to our sisters if we ever catch them crossing the colour line. In our souls we thirst for something like approval, something at least like recognition, from black people. We're in the exile business together.

The rest here: Interview: Spike Lee

The Audacity Of Hope... Or Something Like That

The latest pro-Obama ad, making its debut today, courtesy of, targetting younger voters... I assume.

Apparently, "hope" is akin to a venereal disease. Do you have it?

Film Recommendation - 'The Order Of Myths'

Titled The Order Of Myths, the film examines the time-honored tradition of Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama, where celebrations remain segregated between white and black residents. It opened in NYC this past weekend at the IFC Center, but I haven't seen it yet. However, everything I've heard and read about it since its Sundance debut in January has been overwhelmingly positive, scoring a 100% fresh rating on, and I plan on checking it out before it leaves NYC. Look for it in your neck of the woods!

From the New York Times: The documentary that left the strongest impression is “The Order of Myths,” Margaret Brown’s examination of the history and present-day reality of the segregated worlds of Mardi Gras in Mobile, Ala. Handsomely shot and intelligently edited, with none of the maddening sloppiness that distorts too many nonfiction projects, the film explores the secret societies, the fancy-dress balls and the celebratory parades for a story that is at once very site-specific and seemingly simple and as big and richly complex as the United States itself.

The film's website -

Here's the trailer:

Snoop In Bollywood!

Well... if Stallone and Schwarzeneger can do it, why not Snoop D-O-double gizzle... for shizzle!

From the New York Times:

- The rapper... makes his debut in India this summer, with a guest appearance on the title track of a highly anticipated Bollywood movie, “Singh Is Kinng.” The movie is set to open in August, but the title song is already in heavy rotation on some radio stations in India.

A fusion of hip-hop and bhangra with a simple chorus... it features Snoop Dogg giving “what up to all the ladies hanging out in Mumbai” and rapping about “Ferraris, Bugattis and Maseratis.”

“I really dig how much music is infused with the movies” in Bollywood, Snoop Dogg said in an e-mailed response to questions. “Lots of hip-hop tracks sample Indian music, and a lot of their music sounds like it was influenced by hip-hop... We’re putting together something real big in India... more movies with some of my Bollywood homies.”

“I’m coming to take over Bollywood,” Snoop Dogg promised during the video shoot. “I’ve never been able to come over there and do shows for you all, but now I’m going to come and do shows... This is just the beginning.”

Uhhhh... woof, woof?


So, I Saw 'Medicine For Melancholy' Yesterday...

It's not in theatres yet, but thanks to Sujewa Ekanayake of DIY Filmmaker, part of the indieWIRE Blog Network, I had the privilege of screening a DVD copy of the film yesterday afternoon, accompanied by Sujewa, as well as Brandon Harris of Cinema Echo Chamber and Filmmaker Magazine.

The three of us assembled at Brandon's Brooklyn bachelor pad, eager to take a trip that only Barry Jenkins, writer/director of Medicine For Melancholy, could navigate. And a worthwhile expedition it certainly was, despite a few potholes along the way.

The conversation that followed almost lead to fisticuffs, but the 3 of us are grown men, so we were able to resolve our disagreements without throwing any punches!

Of course, I'm kidding!!!!!

Although, a healthy discussion did follow, which I'll elaborate on, in my eventual review of the film.

So, no, this is not a review; consider it a preview - a teaser, if you will :o) I'll post my full review later on this week. I just have to set aside time to produce it, which I will.

Right now, I'm celebrating Stanley Kubrick's 80th birthday with an in-house retrospective, even though it's time for me to go to bed; The over-looked and under-appreciated Eyes Wide Shut, a favorite of mine, is up next!

Cheers! And to all, a haunting night...

Random Casting News

Ving Rhames just signed on to co-star in an independent film titled Rogues Gallery, described as a spy comedy which takes place in an underground government intelligence agency. Not much else has been revealed. The film will co-star Ellen Barkin, Maggie Q and others, and will be co-produced by Richard Kelly (Donny Darko, Southland Tales).

And former NYPD Blue star, Henry Simmons, has signed on to star opposite Robin Williams in World's Greatest Dad. Synopsis: Lance is a high school teacher who protects his family from shame following the embarrassing accidental death of his son. Lance writes a fake suicide note to cover up the death, but without permission the note is published and becomes an unexpected hit. Keen to be a successful author, Lance produces an entire journal which he passes off as his son's. The film will be directed by... Bob Goldthwait... yup, he's still around!


Benicio Del Toro Is 'The Wolf Man'

Speaking of wolves (See my previous post to catch up), Oscar winner Benicio Del Toro will also showcase his set of fangs and claws next year in a reimagining of the 1941 film titled, simply, The Wolf Man. That's him above in make-up, by the way.

The film is set in the late 1880s, maintaining the plotline of the original. Lawrence Talbot (Del Toro) was traumatized by his mother's death as a child. Following his brother's disappearance, Talbot hunts a murderer, which turns out to be a werewolf, and a curse is passed on, revealing a horrifying destiny for himself.

It's listed as a horror/thriller, and everything I've seen and heard so far about this excites me. Not only is the cast full of talented actors (Del Toro, Anthony Hopkins, Hugo Weaving), the original screenplay was written by the same dude who wrote other dark thrillers like Seven and 8MM, Andrew Kevin Walker.

A trailer was screened at the Comic-Con Convention this weekend, but, to my knowledge, it hasn't shown up online anywhere... yet. But every review I've read from those who were present has been very enthusiastic.On the surface, the film feels appropriately atmospheric, and I can't wait to see some footage.

The film opens in April 2009, about a month before Hugh Jackman's Wolverine bio-pic. You can check out its website here: Wolf Man Movie.

Trailer - 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine'

Below is leaked trailer footage from the Comic-Con Convention in San Diego, CA, which ended today, for next year's highly anticipated Wolverine bio-pic, X-Men Origins: Wolverine; essentially, a film about how Wolverine became Wolverine.

X-Men fans will know exactly what I'm talking about. As for the rest of you... well... you can always skip this post.

The film stars Aussie hunk, Hugh Jackman, Liev Schreiber, from the Black Eyed Peas, in his first big screen role, and many others.

The official trailer probably isn't scheduled to show up online for a little while... although now that it's been leaked, Marvel Entertainment will probably be forced to release the official version. But I'm sure they knew that. However, I won't be surprised if the leaked trailer disappears shortly.

For now, here's the bootleg, broken up into 2 parts:



Trailer - 'W.' (Josh Brolin, Jeffrey Wright, Thandie Newton)

Thandie Newton as Condie

Here it is folks - the first teaser trailer for W., Oliver Stone's bio-pic of our outgoing president, George W. Bush, starring Josh Brolin as W, Jeffrey Wright as Colin Powell, Thandie Newton as Condie Rice, and a host of other intriguing character choices...

It certainly looks like the film is leaning towards the humorous side of the man's life, although it is just a trailer. And I barely recognized Thandie Newton for the few seconds she appears in the teaser.

The film bows October 17th!

Break Time!

I'm outta here until much later on tonight... places to go, people to see, etc... It's a lovely day outside, as it was yesterday, which I thoroughly enjoyed, and plan on doing today as well!

Until then... C-ya later kiddies!

Box Office - 7/25/08 To 7/27/08

As expected, The Dark Knight stumped the competition at the box office for a second weekend in a row, with a $75.6 million take, shooting past the $300 million mark, to $314.2 million, which is said to be a 10 day record!

With numbers like those, Warner Bros. (the studio responsible for the film) already has its sights set on the next record target - $400 million, which took Shrek 2 forty-three days to reach in 2004 - predicting that The Dark Knight would take less than half that time, 18 days, to reach that number!Holy cow Batman!

At number 2 was the Columbia Pictures comedy Step Brothers, starring Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly as perpetual adolescents, which opened at a surprisingly strong $30 million! I certainly didn't expect it to do so well. I guess, unlike me, there are still a lot of people out there who haven't grown weary of Will Ferrell's man/boy schtick.

In 3rd place the ABBA-inspired musical romance Mamma Mia! slipped one place to No. 3 with $17.8 million while its 10-day total rose to $62.7 million.

And at a disappointing 4th place - 20th Century Fox's The X-Files: I Want to Believe, with a paltry $10.2 million, a figure that is much lower than studio expectations. I could have saved Fox a lot of money and energy by telling them how late, and unnecessary an idea this was. Not that they would have listened to little old me anyway...

And rounding out the top 5 - Warner Bros' Journey To The Center Of The Earth, which finished the weekend with $9.2 million, for a cummulative total $60M.

The rest of the story:

6 - Hancock, $8 million7 - Wall-E, $6.1 million
8 - Hellboy II: The Golden Army, $4.8M
9 - Space Chimps, $4.2M
10 - Wanted, $2.6M

Opening wide next weekend: The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (Might this be The Dark Knight's killer?)


Happy Birthday Stanley Kubrick!

It really was yesterday, July 26th, but since I was out most of the day, I didn't post anything.

But yes, if the man was still alive today, he would have turned 80 years old - a milestone, certainly!

He's one of my all-time favorite auteurs - easily making my top 5 list.

In memoriam... here are the sublime final 9 minutes to his sci-fi masterpiece, 2001: A Space Odyssey, the very first Kubrick film I ever saw, which happened when I was still quite young, but it left an indelible impression on me, and it still haunts me when I watch it:

'I Am Legend' Prequel

Looks like all the rumors about a Prequel to last falls Will Smith blockbuster, I Am Legend, are no longer just rumors. The project is definitely in the works, with Will returning to assume his role as U.S. Army virologist, Lieutenant Colonel Robert Neville, (no relation to Aaron, of course) also known as the last man on earth!

I Am Legend was one of 2007's top grossers, with $584 million worldwide, so a prequel (or sequel) should be no surprise.

Director Francis Lawrence spoke at the ongoing Comic-Con International Convention in San Diego, where he confirmed rumors that he is working on the project.

Yes, yes, absolutely, we’re actually trying to crack that. We’re trying to figure out some ideas for it, but yes, it would be a prequel... In the prequel, it’s slightly different because it’s earlier. We were three years later so we did a lot of research into the way nature would have sort of overtaken the city, with the cracks in the streets and the weeds, so if it’s just back earlier, it’ll be slightly different so the approach will be different. We’re not positive of the time of the year, because if you go in winter, you can do some entirely different kinds of things.”

Good idea/bad idea? Who knows! When the film is released, we'll find out.


Grace Jones Returns!

This is probably one of the coolest things I've seen and heard in awhile. It's simple yet, quite seductive and haunting in a way only Grace Jones can deliver. The song is called Corporate Cannibal, and it's the first track from her upcoming new album titled Hurricane which is scheduled for release in October this year! You can guarantee that I'll be checking it out! I'm no Grace Jones afficionado. She always seemed a little too esoteric for me, especially in my youth. But now, as an adult, I'm much more drawn to the bizarre than I ever was... maybe because I can be a little idiosyncratic myself :o)

By the way, the woman is 60 years old! And this is her first studio album in almost 20 years!

"Pleased to meet you... pleased to have you on my plate... your meat is sweet... your life is my sport..."