Bob Odenkirk got a kick out of playing a punch-throwing, weapon-wielding action hero.
Known for his decades of comedy and leading role in the drama series “Better Call Saul,” the actor is excited for the world to see him star as a suburban dad with a suppressed set of skills in the new thriller “Nobody.”
There really was another cut of “Justice League.” Everyone knew it: the studio, the director, the actors and, most importantly, the fans who bore witness to the 2017 film. They all knew it. But for a while, no one involved would officially acknowledge its existence.
There’s much more to Tom Holland behind the mask.
The actor, who rose to fame playing Spider-Man, embraced an entirely different type of character in the addiction drama “Cherry,” which reunited him with “Avengers” directors Joe and Anthony Russo.
When Eddie Murphy made the original "Coming to America," he was, almost indisputably, the funniest man in America.
Murphy was at the very height of his fame, coming off "Beverly Hills Cop II" and the stand-up special "Raw." They were heady times. Arsenio Hall, Murphy's longtime friend and co-star in "Coming to America," remembers them sneaking out during the shoot to a Hollywood nightclub while still dressed as Prince Akeem and his loyal aide Semmi. "We were insane," says Hall.
The '80s, Murphy says, are "all a blur."
Who among us would count “Coming to America” as a great movie? The 1988 comedy, which featured Eddie Murphy at the height of his stardom, was far from a cinematic masterpiece: The silly, slapstick fairy tale of an African prince who travels to Queens to find the love of his life was pure ‘80s schlock, from its plastic production values to a plot that felt cobbled together from a library shelf of So You Think You Can Write a Screenplay guides. It wasn’t even a grand showcase for Murphy, who with the exception of playing some amusing secondary characters in disguise, delivered a performance far more subdued than he was capable of.
It was the fall of 2017, and Keanu Reeves had been carrying around a character in his head. The actor so associated with portraying a phalanx of dark-clad fighters kept envisioning a world-weary warrior whose birth predated even human language. Who knows, he thought, this character just might be a future film role.
With homebound nominees appearing by remote video and hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler on different sides of the country, a very socially distanced 78th Golden Globe Awards trudged on in the midst of the pandemic and amid a storm of criticism for the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, with top awards going to "Nomadland," "Borat Subsequent Moviefilm," "The Crown" and "Schitt's Creek."
As a musician, Nicky Jam has received accolades including a Latin Grammy and a Billboard Music Award, but nothing would make the reggaeton star happier than having a star with his name in the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
For Tahar Rahim, “The Mauritanian” was about prisons — at Guantanamo Bay, and of the mind.
“It’s about the horrors he has been through, but also there’s a light inside of this character,” French-born Rahim says of playing longtime detainee and now bestselling author Mohamedou Ould Slahi. “The way he was able to go through this ... he became so wise to be able to not hold a grudge against anybody after all of this. It’s almost incredible for a human being.”
Marsha Stephanie Blake logs onto the Zoom call looking like a million bucks. It’s noon on a weekday in December and the “I’m Your Woman” actress is calling from New York, where among other things this year she’s celebrated virtual movie premieres, attended protests, sewed masks for essential workers, campaigned to get out the vote and filmed a Netflix show inside her home with her family during the pandemic.
Set in the year 2049, in the immediate aftermath of an unspecified global calamity that appears, based on scant but at times scary evidence, to be both environmental and technological — perhaps even financial, political and cultural — “The Midnight Sky” only looks like a disaster film. Slyly, and by misdirection that cleverly conceals its true intent until the poignant end, it reveals itself to be a story of regret over a lost opportunity for connection.
The resulting film, "76 Days," offers an alternately harrowing and inspiring look inside four hospitals in Wuhan during the country's two-and-a-half-month lockdown as it became the world's first COVID-19 epicenter. Co-directed by Wu and two Chinese filmmakers — Weixi Chen and a state-run-media reporter who is remaining anonymous so as not to run afoul of the government — the film premiered in September at the Toronto International Film Festival and will be released Friday in more than 50 virtual cinemas nationwide.
In a journey that takes us from the grassy hills of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, to the urban landscape of Chicago to the deserts of El Paso, Texas, “Half Brothers” is a film that breaks studio barriers and shatters stereotypes of Latino characters. It’s the story of Renato, a successful Mexican aviation executive, who is shocked to discover he has an American half brother named Asher.
Vince Vaughn has been starring in movies for a quarter of a century, ever since his breakout as a swaggering wannabe actor in the 1996 indie comedy "Swingers." But in these strange and stressful times in which we find ourselves, his life is perhaps not as different from yours as you might imagine.
Kaley Cuoco kicked off her last birthday in a rooftop pool with Michiel Huisman, surrounded by floating candles, champagne flutes and a sweeping view of Bangkok, Thailand. She was on location for the pilot episode of "The Flight Attendant," her first live-action role since "The Big Bang Theory" ended and the project that launched her production company.
So you’re Tim Scott, the Republican senator from South Carolina who opposes Roe v. Wade and wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act, and you get a call from Chris Evans, a Hollywood star and lifelong Democrat who has been blasting President Donald Trump for years. He wants to meet. And film it. And share it on his online platform.
What makes a good slave movie?
The very question can feel too light considering the two-ton subject matter, but it’s top of mind this week with the release of “Antebellum,” a thriller by the producers of “Get Out” that uses the horrors of slavery as an allegory for America’s long-overdue racial reckoning.
It’s a lot — and yet, not enough.
"The Ballad of Mulan," a poem about a woman who pretends to be a man to take her ailing father’s place in a military draft, dates back more than a thousand years. The Chinese folk story has also been adapted for the screen numerous times throughout the past century. But the retelling most familiar to Americans is just over two decades old, and therefore a staple of many millennials’ childhoods.
A further complication for those deciding if they feel safe returning to movie theaters for Christopher Nolan’s blockbuster "Tenet": Like many of his movies, you probably need to see this one twice.
With a ridiculously complicated scavenger hunt of a plot, multiple villains and a globe-hopping narrative that journeys to half a dozen countries, "Tenet" is like a James Bond movie, except less coherent.
Auli’i Cravalho’s life changed forever at age 14 when she was cast as the voice of Disney’s “Moana.” The Hawaiian native loved singing and acting, but they were just hobbies to her. So were horseback riding, swimming and microbiology, for that matter. A career in Hollywood seemed implausible at best.
In a public address to “Jeopardy!” viewers last week, Alex Trebek assured fans that he was fine. “Feeling great,” in fact. The treatment for Stage IV pancreatic cancer was “paying off,” he said, and his numbers were good. Wearing one of his well-pressed blazers, his voice steady as ever, he playfully showed off the goatee he’d grown since the pandemic halted production in March.
The year in television brought a crop of compelling limited series centered on the female experience, including “Mrs. America,” “Little Fires Everywhere,” “Unbelievable” and “Unorthodox” — and with it a rich array of parts for women.
Ellie Goulding’s fourth album is a perfectly crafted artsy pop record full of songs built with epic production and layered vocals. But underneath the beats are gems of lyrics: dark, poetic one-liners with a heaviness that might raise your eyebrow.
The saga of "Tenet" took another turn Monday as Warner Bros. said it was taking the anticipated Christopher Nolan thriller off its planned mid-August release date, confirming what many in the movie industry believe: with covid-19 cases surging in California and other large states, no major new films will be released in the U.S. until at least September.
He’s Forrest Gump. He’s Mr. Rogers. He’s Woody.
But with all the famous titles Tom Hanks has owned, few have fit as snugly and as smoothly as “captain” — whether it’s fending off Somali pirates in “Captain Phillips,” landing a plane on the Hudson in “Sully,” finding his way back to Earth in “Apollo 13” or commanding World War II troops in “Saving Private Ryan.”
NBCUniversal’s Peacock streaming service debuted nationwide Wednesday, betting that weary consumers will tolerate a few commercials in exchange for a low-priced offering that includes news, sports and thousands of hours of TV shows.
The Chicks didn’t need to drop the "Dixie" from their name to raise suspicions about their reverence for American tradition.
Announced late last month — just weeks before the July 17 release of "Gaslighter," the trio’s first studio album in 14 years — the name change was framed as part of a widespread racial reckoning that’s led many to reconsider words and symbols from the Civil War-era South.
We’ve probably all been to a wedding that felt like it would never end. For Sarah (Cristin Milioti), that wedding is her younger sister’s, where she’s drowning herself in red wine and extremely unprepared to give a speech. Now imagine living that nightmarish day again, and again, and again.
On October 3, 2009, a group of soldiers stationed at an isolated base in the Hindu Kush endured what would become one of the bloodiest confrontations in the U.S. war in Afghanistan: the Battle of Kamdesh, a punishing 12-hour assault from hundreds of Taliban forces that wound up costing several American lives and becoming a particularly grievous example of poor military judgment, and its most dire consequences for the people forced to carry it out.
The day marking the celebration of our national story is almost upon us. An occasion sure to spread joy throughout the land as Americans reflect on the sacrifices of the Founding Fathers and consider what their labors on behalf of democratic government have wrought.
I speak, of course, of that special date, the Third of July. Otherwise known as "Hamilton" Day.
June 21 is Father’s Day, and some of us might be looking for some movies about fatherhood, in all its complexities -- so here are 10 of my favorites from the past couple of decades. Here’s to all of our dads, on screen and off.
Just before the coronavirus became a global pandemic, Maude Apatow was planning on finally moving out of her parents’ house. She’d found a few apartments that piqued her interest and scheduled times to tour them. But when the city went on lockdown, she put her plans on hold, instead hunkering down in Brentwood, Calif., with her mom, dad and 17-year-old sister.
When Spike Lee phoned in for an interview last week, New York was still in the throes of demonstrations against police brutality, a lockdown brought on by COVID-19 and the civic unrest and economic crisis that have ensued.
When the coronavirus pandemic hit, Disney quickly scrambled to cancel or postpone the theatrical releases of their highest profile titles. But with Kenneth Branagh’s "Artemis Fowl," an adaptation of Irish author Eoin Colfer’s fantasy novels, the mouse house decided to dump it onto Disney+ two weeks after it was slated for release. It’s a good decision, offering up some fresh content for kids just out of school, but it’s also wise because "Artemis Fowl" wouldn’t have been worth the wait for the big screen. It’s barely worth the time to stream.
Indie music artists are joining in the chorus of voices decrying police brutality on the black community.
Phantogram, Jesse Malin, Jay Watts, Matthew Caws of Nada Surf, Bartees Strange, Lonemoon, Rogue Wave, Lateef the Truthspeaker, Crashing Hotels, Nick Andre, Worriers, Sulene, Superchunk and Damon & Naomi are among the acts who have contributed to “Talk - Action = Zero,” a compilation album of previously unreleased music, demos, live recordings and other material now available on bandcamp.com.
Before Ben Schwartz and Thomas Middleditch stride onstage to do long-form improv, the comedy duo, at Schwartz’s behest, always share a hug. “I love you,” Schwartz utters every time. “OK,” Middleditch often responds, not exactly saying “yes, and” to the gesture but sheepishly acknowledging his affection, nonetheless.
The last time bassist Jon Jones played a concert with his country group Eli Young Band was March 8. He hopes to hit the stage again in June to launch a new drive-in concert series in his first return to live music with fans since the devastating coronavirus.
NEW YORK — With masks over their mouths and gloves on their hands, country superstar Luke Combs and his band went to a music studio — in separate rooms — and recorded a new song reflecting the mood of a world dramatically altered by the spreading coronavirus.
Stephen King’s affinity for the novella form goes back to the early stages of his long, prolific career. In 1982, King published “Different Seasons,” a quartet of long stories that contained some of his finest work, and eventually led to some memorable film adaptations, among them “The Shawshank Redemption” and “Stand by Me.” Since then, at roughly 10-year intervals, King has produced three similar volumes that have allowed him to play with a wide variety of themes, scenes and settings. The latest of these, “If It Bleeds,” contains four new, exceptionally compelling novellas that reaffirm his mastery of the form.
“Mom and I are both fans of podcasts, and we had been planning to do one for quite some time,” says Emma Walton Hamilton, Andrews’ eldest daughter and longtime cowriter-collaborator. “It’s a lovely extension of what we’ve already been doing with our own children’s books and children’s programming. And because of the virus, American Public Media was kind enough to fast-track the podcast. It’s kept us very busy.”
They all know Thundercat here: the weathered, seen-it-all counterman who reserves the lanes, the acne-ridden teenager handing out floppy and slick leather shoes, the waiter bringing heaping platters of fruit and bowls of matzo ball soup. To them, the interstellar jazz bassist is practically family. But don't mistake this for "Cheers." The Pinz Bowling Center in Studio City is no insular neighborhood tavern, but rather one of the most popular social nexuses in Los Angeles (at least in pre-pandemic days). It attracts everyone from stoned Valley high schoolers to the Los Angeles Lakers, young working-class families to those old enough to remember when bowling was televised every Saturday afternoon on ABC. And one regular is Thundercat, née Stephen Bruner, who never fails to abide.
There was a time not too long ago when Mandy Moore thought the best part of her life might be behind her. Though she once had dreams of being a serious singer-songwriter, she hadn’t made music in years. Her acting career, once thriving, had been left for dead. The unending rejection of an actor’s life had annihilated much of her spirit, and an unhappy marriage had taken care of the rest. She felt unseen. Disposable. She was past 30. She figured her time was up.
For decades, films and TV series have served up countless imaginary catastrophes that have brought the planet to its knees, from natural disasters to alien invasions to, yes, rampaging pandemics. But as the world grapples with the rapidly growing coronavirus crisis, Hollywood is finding that reality is far more frightening.
In "Bloodshot," former elite U.S. commando Ray Garrison, played by Vin Diesel, dies before the opening credits. He then wakes up on a hospital gurney inside a gleaming skyscraper to find that his body has been donated by the military to science -- specifically the firm Rising Spirit Technologies, whose founder Dr. Emil Harting (Guy Pearce, sporting a bionic arm, two-day stubble and an untrustworthy twinkle in his eye) has resuscitated Ray, turning him into a cybernetically enhanced super-soldier.
Michael W. Smith has posted some eye-popping stats over the years. His many accomplishments include releasing 30-plus top 10 albums.
That certainly qualifies him as one of the genre’s most successful artists. Yet, he has also triumphed as a crossover act on the pop charts during a solo career that extends back to the early ’80s.
Although Pixar does not lean on parental death as storytelling device to the degree that classic animated Disney films do ("Bambi" and "Cinderella" lead a long list), the studio has often disappeared a mom or dad -- either temporarily or permanently -- to further the narrative.
Chris Pratt and Tom Holland, who have also shared the screen in the box office juggernauts "Avengers: Infinity War" and "Avengers: Endgame," spoke to The Los Angeles Times about delving into the "Onward's" emotional depths, embracing nerdy fantasy pursuits and pressing onward through the ups and downs of Marvel superstardom.
Streaming network Vet Tv is marketed directly to members and veterans of the armed forces. The staff says its crude sense of humor is reflective of a large portion of the military — whether civilians would understand it or not.
“This isn’t any signal of the Night Sweats being over,” the Denver-based singer/songwriter assured fans of his regular band, who count the Twin Cities among their top markets. “I just needed to do something for myself for a little while.”
To reinvent H.G. Wells’ 1897 story, which is best known as the 1933 James Whale classic horror film, director Leigh Whannell has flipped the notion of invisibility. In this take, invisibility is no superpower, and no affliction, like the bandage-wrapped Claude Rains, but rather, it’s a threat.
Much like our furry friends, movies about man's best friend come in all shapes and sizes: lost dog movies, talking dog movies, military dog movies, reincarnated dog movies. "The Call of the Wild," directed by Chris Sanders and based on the classic novella by Jack London, is what one might call a literary dog movie, even if there is technically no actual dog in it. The star of "The Call of the Wild," Buck, is a CGI creation. And it's only through the technology that his dangerous and harrowing adventures in the Alaskan wilderness during the Gold Rush, as outlined by London, could be realistically brought to the big screen, for better or for worse.
Sooner or later, everything old is new again. Especially when you’re in Hollywood.
Across television and film, remakes, reboots and revivals have dominated popular culture over the last decade, most noticeably across the horror genre. The latest reimagining (but surely not the last) is Blumhouse’s "Fantasy Island," a PG-13 thriller that transforms the comparatively tame 1970s series into an ensemble horror movie.
"Sonic the Hedgehog," the adaptation of the popular '90s Sega video game, is actually good. Expectations have been low since the movie's rocky rollout, but it is legitimately funny, heartwarming and entertaining.