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Justin Timberlake Pays Tribute to ‘Master of Humanity’ Jonathan Demme

9 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

Justin Timberlake paid tribute to Jonathan Demme following the Oscar-winning director’s death on Wednesday. The singer shared a black and white photo of himself and Demme, with a lengthy caption honoring the director. Demme directed last year’s concert documentary “Justin Timberlake + The Tennessee Kids,” which chronicled the final days of Timberlake’s most recent tour. “Where do I begin..? Words just aren’t enough with heartache like this,” Timberlake wrote. “You, master of humanity. You, genius of storytelling. You, generous and warm man. You, special soul.” Also Read: Meryl Streep Remembers 'Big Hearted,' 'Compassionate' Jonathan Demme “You »


- Reid Nakamura

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Veteran Executive Geneva Wasserman Joins the Whitener Company

9 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The Whitener Company has tapped industry veteran Geneva Wasserman as its president, Variety has learned exclusively.

Wasserman will be based in Los Angeles. She will also be a partner in the company alongside Brett Thomason and Gordon Whitener and oversee all operations including development, acquisition, production, and marketing for the studio. Wasserman will be in charge of executing an aggressive growth strategy for the production arm.

Whitener Entertainment Group’s first feature film, “Dog Years,” starring Burt Reynolds and Ariel Winter, is premiering as a featured selection at the Tribeca Film Festival this week. Reynolds portrays an aging movie star invited to a low-rent film festival. Whitener is a producer on the film, directed by Adam Rifkin.

Wasserman has served in numerous executive and legal roles focused on content development, licensing, technology, and business affairs while working with Dr. Seuss Enterprises, Starz Animation, Arc Animation, the Hub, Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox, »


- Dave McNary

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‘Bandstand’ Broadway Review: Dance, Soldiers, Dance! Singing Is Another Story

9 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

It has not been a spectacular season for dance on Broadway — until now. A year ago, Andy Blankenbuehler won the Tony Award for choreographing “Hamilton,” against such stiff competition as Savion Glover and his superb work on “Shuffle Along.” This year, there’s almost no competition for Blankenbuehler’s arresting choreography in the new musical “Bandstand,” which opened Wednesday at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre. Set in post-World War II America, the show almost never stops dancing, and when it does Blankenbuehler keeps the motion going with a few steps here, a few steps there, that in a later scene will. »


- Robert Hofler

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Bonnie Aarons to Return as the Demon Sister in ‘The Nun’

9 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

New Line has hired Bonnie Aarons to reprise her role as the demonic sister for the horror-thriller “The Nun,” its spinoff of “The Conjuring 2.”

Demian Bichir and Taissa Farmiga are starring, with shooting starting in May in Romania. Corin Hardy is directing. Bechir will portray a priest and Farmiga will play the titular nun.

The studio began developing “The Nun” last June, shortly after “The Conjuring 2” opened. Producers are James Wan, who directed the two “Conjuring” movies and produced the sequel, and Peter Safran, who produced both movies.

Related

Taissa Farmiga to Play Titular Role in Horror Movie ‘The Nun

The current script for “The Nun,” written by Gary Dauberman and Wan, centers on Bichir’s character traveling to Rome to investigate the killing of a nun.

The demon nun, a manifestation of the evil spirit Valak, came to life in “The Conjuring 2” from a painting by »


- Dave McNary

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Lady Gaga Invites Fans to Be 'A Star Is Born' Extras at L.A. Concert

9 hours ago | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Lady Gaga is calling on her fans to be a part of her new film with Bradley Cooper, A Star is Born.

The superstar musician tweeted out an invite to all her Little Monsters on Wednesday to attend a filming event at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles on May 2 and 3. According to a posting on the Greek website, tickets are $12 per day to be a member of the audience in a scene portraying a country western music concert.

"All you Monsters that can attend should get decked out in your most comfortable denim & boots, throw »


- Colin Stutz, Billboard

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Writers Guild Talks Going Down to the Wire as Hollywood Wonders Why

9 hours ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Indications are strong that industry negotiators will need be working down to the wire during the next five days to avoid a writers strike.

Sources tell Variety that there have been mixed results from the past two days of contract negotiations Tuesday and Wednesday. There were no public comments from either side at the headquarters of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers as both camps are observing a media blackout.

On Tuesday, sources said the AMPTP made some adjustments to the previous offer extended to the WGA on April 13. The studio side was awaiting a detailed response from WGA on Wednesday. One person noted that on Tuesday WGA negotiators came into the room toting papers with “96.3%” printed out in large type — a reference to the record percentage of eligible guild members who supported the strike authorization vote.

Sources characterized the mood in the room at AMPTP headquarters in Sherman Oaks, California »


- Dave McNary and Cynthia Littleton

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Writers Guild Talks Going Down to the Wire as Hollywood Wonders Why

9 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Indications are strong that industry negotiators will need be working down to the wire during the next five days to avoid a writers strike.

Sources tell Variety that there have been mixed results from the past two days of contract negotiations Tuesday and Wednesday. There were no public comments from either side at the headquarters of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers as both camps are observing a media blackout.

On Tuesday, sources said the AMPTP made some adjustments to the previous offer extended to the WGA on April 13. The studio side was awaiting a detailed response from WGA on Wednesday. One person noted that on Tuesday WGA negotiators came into the room toting papers with “96.3%” printed out in large type — a reference to the record percentage of eligible guild members who supported the strike authorization vote.

Sources characterized the mood in the room at AMPTP headquarters in Sherman Oaks, »


- Dave McNary and Cynthia Littleton

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‘Survivor: Game Changers’ episode 10 recap: Did Sarah Lacina play like a criminal in ‘A Line Drawn in Concrete’?

10 hours ago | Gold Derby | See recent Gold Derby news »

Wednesday’s episode of “Survivor: Game Changers,” titled “A Line Drawn in Concrete,” presented police officer Sarah Lacina with her first major chance to play like a criminal and make a big move. Did Sarah take advantage of the opportunity and break up her dominant alliance of six, or did she go along with their plans as the lowest-ranking member […] »


- Marcus James Dixon

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Nicolas Cage Breaks Ankle on the Set of Heist Movie ‘#211’ in Bulgaria

10 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

Nicolas Cage has broken his ankle on the set of upcoming heist movie “#211,” according to media reports. The 53-year-old action star was initially hospitalized in Sofia, Bulgaria, near where the film is shooting, but has since been transported back to Los Angeles for treatment. While it is not currently known how Cage’s injury will affect the production, he reportedly hopes to return to set in about two weeks. Also Read: 'Dog Eat Dog' Review: Nicolas Cage, Paul Schrader Reteam for Empty Crime Drama Millennium Films and Nu Image, the production companies behind “#211” have not yet announced how »


- Umberto Gonzalez

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Former ‘Bachelor’ Chris Soules Called 911 Before Fleeing Scene of Deadly Crash (Audio)

10 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

Former “Bachelor” star Chris Soules called 911 and checked the pulse of the man killed in the deadly car crash he fled from, according to newly released audio recordings. Soules, 35, was taken into custody by the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office in Iowa after the truck he was driving rear-ended a tractor at around 8 p.m. Monday night. According to local station Kwwl, both vehicles went into a ditch. Kenneth Mosher, 66, who was driving the tractor died and Soules fled the scene, leaving his truck behind. On the newly released audio of the 911 call Soules placed before leaving the »


- Linda Ge

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John Knoll "Tinkering" With A New 'Star Wars' Story Idea

10 hours ago | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Industrial Light & Magic’s John Knoll, who served as visual effects supervisor on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, also conceived the film's original story — and now he's at it again, telling The Hollywood Reporter that he’s “tinkering” with another Star Wars-related idea.

“I have another idea I’ve been tinkering with,” he said after participating on a Rogue One Super Session during the National Association of Broadcasters Show. “It’s maybe 75 percent there. I haven’t pitched it to [Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy]. It’s another Star Wars thing.”

Upcoming Star Wars films already in the works include Star Wars: The Last Jedi, opening in December; a »


- Carolyn Giardina

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UTA Signs Peabody-Winning Director Eugene Jarecki (Exclusive)

10 hours ago | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Filmmaker Eugene Jarecki has signed with UTA, The Hollywood Reporter has exclusively learned. He previously was with CAA.

Both of his documentaries — Why We Fight, about the rise of the military-industrial complex, and The House I Live In, about the war on drugs — won Sundance Grand Jury Prizes and Peabody Awards. His other credits include the Emmy-winning HBO documentary Reagan and The Trials of Henry Kissinger, which won an award from Amnesty International and was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award.

Jarecki, the brother of fellow filmmakers Andrew Jarecki (The Jinx) and Nicholas Jarecki (Arbitrage), will »


- Rebecca Sun

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Serena Williams Says She Accidentally Announced Her Pregnancy on Snapchat

10 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

It turns out Snapchat is just for Millennials … After the world celebrated Serena Williams’ pregnancy announcement last week, the 23 Grand Slam singles titles-holder admitted that she hadn’t intended to share the good news just yet, but committed a social media faux pas. “Well, actually it was an accident. I was on vacation just taking some time for myself and I have this thing where I’ve been checking my status and taking pictures every week to see how far along I’m going,” Williams, 35, said at the 2017 Ted Talks conference at the Vancouver Convention Centre in Canada Tuesday night. »


- Debbie Emery

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‘Downton Abbey’ Immersive Exhibit to Embark on Multi-Year World Tour

10 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

Downton Abbey” fans will soon be able to take an immersive trip into the hit series. NBCUniversal International Studios and Imagine Exhibitions announced on Wednesday that the two companies would be teaming up on “Downton Abbey: The Exhibition,” which will explore the world of Carnival Films’ series as well as its post-Edwardian era. The exhibit will embark on a multi-year tour beginning at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore on June 17, continuing into other cities around the world, including the U.S., through 2018. Also Read: 'Downton Abbey' Star Maggie Smith Throws Shade Back at Jimmy Kimmel After Emmys »


- Reid Nakamura

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'Whitney: Can I Be Me': Film Review | Tribeca 2017

10 hours ago | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

The phenomenal rise and tragic demise of Whitney Houston is an almost archetypal saga of success, excess and the scarcity of second acts in American lives. But it becomes a little too archetypal in the hands of British director Nick Broomfield, whose new bio-documentary on the late singer is heavy on glib generalizations but light on sharp insights or juicy revelations.

That said, Houston’s enduring superstar glow and a vault full of superlative, previously unseen footage should ensure healthy interest in Can I Be Me, which world premieres at the Tribeca Film Festival this week ahead of its Showtime TV »


- Stephen Dalton

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Dish, Hearst Reach New Retrans Agreement

10 hours ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Dish Network and Hearst Television have reached a new retransmission consent agreement covering the broadcaster’s 31 local stations.

Terms of the multi-year deal were not disclosed. The deal ends a blackout of Hearst stations on Dish services that began in early March, affecting stations in 26 markets, including Boston, Baltimore, Milwaukee, New Orleans and Orlando, Fla.

Dish has, in recent years, engaged in frequent retrans standoffs with broadcast groups including Sinclair Broadcast Group, Tribune Media, Tegna Media and CBS Corp. Hearst, for its part, saw its stations go dark on DirecTV for six days in January while a retrans deal was hammered out.

Tensions between programmers and distributors are rising at a time when both sides are feeling the effects of heightened competition for viewers and new entrants in the pay-tv eco-system, including a number of so-called “skinny bundles,” broadband-delivered channel packages.

Dish and other MVPDs have pushed for the overhaul of FCC rules governing retransmission consent agreements »


- Daniel Holloway

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Eva Longoria on Her ‘Empire’ Role, Directing and Possible ‘Desperate Housewives’ Reunion

10 hours ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Eva Longoria is the latest star to board “Empire,” making her debut on the Fox juggernaut Wednesday night, playing the powerful character Charlotte Frost.

Longoria’s three-episode stint on “Empire” is one of many projects she’s currently juggling, along with a Fox comedy pilot, “Type A,” which is in contention for the 2017-2018 season, and the upcoming film “Lowriders,” which hits theaters next month. Since her hit show “Desperate Housewives” went off the air, the multi-hyphenate has focused primarily on her jam-packed production company, UnbeliEVAble Entertainment, and directing, with credits including episodes of “Black-ish” and “Jane the Virgin.”

Here, Longoria talks to Variety about her special guest role on “Empire” — plus, would she ever consider a “Desperate Housewives” revival?

Why did you want to join “Empire” and how did it come about?

I’ve been a fan of Danny Strong and of course Lee [Daniels] for a long time, and Terrence [Howard] and I have been friends for »


- Elizabeth Wagmeister

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TV Industry Braces for Disruption From Possible WGA Strike

10 hours ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

In an internal letter this week, WGA leaders told members who have volunteered to serve as strike captains to be prepared for immediate action should a work stoppage be triggered after the guild’s contract with producers expires at midnight Pt out May 1.

“If it happens, we will be out there on May 2 with signs,” a union insider told Variety.

That dispels any notion that the writers would delay picketing at the start of a strike, a move that had been considered. It also raises the possibility that media buyers and others will have to pass picket lines on their way into the major networks’ upfront presentations in New York.

Contract talks between the guild and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers resumed on Tuesday after a weeklong break. The clock is ticking for negotiators as the contract expires in five days. Sources close to the situation said there were lengthy discussions at the bargaining »

- Daniel Holloway

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