I spent last week burning through The Great, Hulu’s new-ish series that has Elle Fanning playing a very fictionalized version of a young Catherine the Great. The first season is about Catherine (not yet the Great) preparing to overthrow her husband, the emperor, and take power, which is a pretty amazing conflict to center on.
The show is very reminiscent of The Favourite (it shares both a writer and a very identifiable shooting location), infusing this period drama with modern absurdity and some very over-the-top characters. Nicholas Hoult plays the amazingly pompous and bro-y emperor in a way that almost makes him feel like a tech CEO at times — at one point, he’s even wearing what looks a lot like a hoodie.
I don’t know if the show can thrive once Catherine is no longer the underdog and — spoiler alert, per Peter III’s Wikipedia page — Hoult’s levity is gone. But for now, it’s a wonderful series, and I wish there were three more seasons to speed through.
Check out 11 trailers from this week below.
Bill & Ted Face the Music
Bill & Ted are returning at long last, and the pandemic isn’t going to put a hold on our already long wait. It was announced this week that rather than being delayed, the film is going to head on-demand the same day it hits theaters (whatever theaters are open, that is). It comes out on September 1st.
Black is King
After Hamilton, Black is King is the next big reason to sign up for Disney Plus: a new visual album from Beyoncé, supposed to be tied back to her work on last year’s Lion King remake. It looks every bit as visually magnificent as the others in Beyoncé’s discography. It comes out July 31st.
His Dark Materials
I didn’t hear a ton about His Dark Materials when its first season debuted last year, but the show really looks like it’s hit a stride in this trailer for season 2. The series returns some time this fall.
Gillian Flynn is behind the adaptation of Utopia, a show about fans of a comic book digging into the surprisingly real events depicted in its stories. The show is based on a British series of the same name. John Cusack, Sasha Lane, and Rainn Wilson star in the remake. It debuts on Amazon this fall.
Don’t Look Deeper
Twilight director Catherine Hardwicke has a new sci-fi thriller about a high school student who starts to uncover lost memories that suggest she isn’t human. It comes to Quibi on July 27th.
Netflix has a new documentary coming up that looks at America’s immigration system through the eyes of immigrants facing deportation and the federal agents tasked with removing them. It appears to offer a sad, difficult view into a broken and contentious system responsible for tearing families apart. The film comes out August 3rd.
Nick Frost and Simon Pegg are back together again in Truth Seekers, a new series that has them playing members of a group of clearly unprepared paranormal investigators who get tied up in some big conspiracy. The show is coming to Amazon, but it doesn’t appear to have a premiere date yet.
Bad Ideas with Adam Devine
Quibi already brought back Punk’d, and now it’s adding a Jackass-esque show that has Adam Devine messing with celebrity friends. It comes out on July 27th.
Netflix has picked up a German series about a student who starts diving into an increasingly twisted community of biohackers. I don’t know how accurate the series’ science will be, but the questionable decisions of the biohacking scene don’t seem entirely unfair. The show debuts August 20th.
Stranger Things star Joe Keery takes on a very weird role in Spree, which has him playing a twisted, fame-hungry cab driver who live streams himself torturing the riders he picks up. This film is far from the first to offer a twisted critique of social media, but it stands out by filming everything to look more or less like a YouTube video. It comes out August 14th.
Creepy stuff happening to astronauts is a classically winning recipe for a sci-fi film, and the latest to use that formula is Sputnik, which seems to be about a cosmonaut who returns to Earth with an alien parasite inside him. The film seems to start out as a thriller and eventually gets a lot more action packed. It comes out August 14th.
Correction July 25th, 12:30PM ET: Utopia is on Amazon, not HBO, as originally stated.
In She Dies Tomorrow, figuring out how to spend your last day is really damn hard
A woman jolts awake and gasps for air in a nondescript living room. She can’t explain why, but she’s certain of one thing: she only has one more day to live. So she tells her friend, Jane, and something horrifying happens: Jane also becomes certain the next day will be her last. This strange conviction, it turns out, is contagious. And it’ll infect many more before tomorrow actually comes.
Written and directed by Amy Seimetz, She Dies Tomorrow is a new film with a title and a premise that suggests something propulsive — a thriller, perhaps, or a nightmarish horror film. Instead, it is contemplative, a psychodrama that introduces a simple unsettling idea to each of its characters and lets us watch as they become unmoored. It doesn’t give definite answers to anything, but it is absolutely clear about one thing: everyone who says they are going to die tomorrow absolutely believes it.
She Dies Tomorrow is a house of mirrors, a film much more interested in the reflections it offers you than in conjuring anything overly specific for you to ruminate. Its characters all process the revelation at the heart of the film in strikingly mundane ways. Amy (Kate Lyn Sheil), the protagonist, mills about aimlessly, seemingly overwhelmed by the number of ways she could spend her last day, ends up whiling away the hours with morbidly mundane stuff like looking up urns or wondering if her skin could be made into a leather jacket.
Others, like Brian (Tunde Adebimpe) and Tilly (Jennifer Kim) immediately lose interest in the charade they’ve each been maintaining for the other’s benefit, agreeing that they were never going to work out as a couple and that they were going to leave each other as soon as it didn’t seem callous. She Dies Tomorrow dances from existential dread to compressed breakup story to withering comedy from scene to scene. The film takes the gravity of its premise and juxtaposes it with mundanity, and in doing so its characters all feel so silly and self-absorbed. Then the idea infects me, and I feel silly and self-absorbed.
Incomprehensibly big, destabilizing events have a way of warping everything around them, forcing everything into a new context. She Dies Tomorrow arriving in the midst of a global pandemic that, among other things, inspires a general feeling of mundane helplessness gives the film a recursive quality: we are all surrounded by our own doom and the temptation of that doom is narcissism, to spend all of our time stunned by how our world is being rearranged.
She Dies Tomorrow isn’t interested in resolution, but if you lean forward, you can find interrogation. As each character is infected with the idea that their end is coming, they stare at the camera as barely discernible voices fade in and red and blue lights change the contours of their face. We don’t know what’s going through their minds, but we can imagine: how are you living right now, and how is it different from the ways you’ve always lived? Is there a good reason for that? Who put the idea in your head that it has to be this way?
“Do you want to make out?” a man (Adam Wingard) asks Amy as they get high together and she tries to figure out what to do next on her last day. She consents, but they eventually call it off before anything really happens. It doesn’t feel right. Nothing feels right. And whether there’s an answer to the question of how right Amy or her friends are about their fate, nothing ever will again.
AMC Theaters is learning to embrace the streaming era, not fight it
AMC Theaters faced its “most challenging quarter in the company’s 100-year history,” but CEO Adam Aron is trying to look forward, using the company’s second quarter earnings call today to address how AMC is going to compete in a streaming-focused world.
AMC announced last week that it struck a groundbreaking deal with Universal Pictures that would let the studio place films on digital rental services like iTunes or Amazon just 17 days after they hit theaters. Aron confirmed on the call that if Universal decides to take advantage of the shorter window, those movies will continue to play in theaters. There was confusion last week as to whether AMC would pull its films completely after 17 days or just offer people both options. Prior to the deal, studios were forced to either keep their films in theaters for months at a time, or forego a theatrical release entirely. As part of the deal, AMC will receive some payment for movies that are rented at home.
“Some of our competitors are anxious about this change,” Aron said on the call, as reported by Deadline. “Change is difficult for some to cope with.”
Although Aron is embracing the rapid shift to streaming now, he was singing a different tune a few months ago. After Universal Pictures decided to pull its animated film Trolls World Tour from theaters because of the pandemic in March — which would kick off a chain of events that saw studios like Warner Bros. and Disney do the same — Aron originally said AMC would ban Universal movies in its theaters.
The threat drew eye rolls as people quickly pointed out that AMC wasn’t going to sit out on two of Universal’s biggest upcoming films, including the ninth Fast and Furious movie — F9 — and Jurassic World: Dominion. Fate of the Furious, the eighth installment in the Fast and Furious franchise, grossed more than $1.2 billion worldwide, with both the first two Jurassic World movies also grossing more than $1 billion worldwide. AMC, whose earnings this quarter were down 98 percent year over year, couldn’t afford to refuse movies from any one studio. That’s especially true when it’s Universal.
What became clear is that Aron and AMC Theaters couldn’t afford to ignore how big a business premium streaming has become; the pandemic accelerated a reality that was going to arrive either way. Studios want their films in theaters, but also want to be able to sell titles to audiences at home. The new rules are trying to keep one from cannibalizing the other, like how trailers for an upcoming movie can’t promote that it’ll be available to stream at home. That’s because Universal can’t market a movie hitting digital retailers until 10 days after the movie’s initial release, according to the new rules.
To be clear: AMC is learning to accept streaming as long as it can also profit from the situation. We don’t know how the revenue breakdown for AMC looks, although Aron said “the company would be compensated for every rental,” according to Variety. How the exact deal is structured remains unclear, Variety added. This is different from a situation where AMC is left out completely, like a studio bypassing a theatrical release entirely to stream exclusively on a platform like HBO Max or Disney Plus, for example.
“I’m expecting that this is going to become an industry standard,” Aron said, as reported by Variety. “I expect that some of our competitors will do this, if not all.”
Universal isn’t the only studio AMC’s eyeing, Aron also confirmed. The CEO spoke about Disney’s recent decision to bring Mulan, one of the company’s most anticipated tentpole films, to its Disney Plus streaming service where it could, but still release it in theaters where Disney Plus doesn’t operate. Instead of calling out Disney, Aron noted that “just like AMC is under duress, Disney’s under pressure too,” adding that “at some point they’ve got to monetize their movie product.” Still, he added that he hopes Disney will agree to similar terms as those in the company’s deal with Universal. (Disney CEO Bob Chapek called Mulan’s move to Disney Plus — where it will be available for an extra $30 — a one-time deal.)
Considering that AMC Theaters lost more than half a billion dollars this quarter, Aron is looking to the future positively. The CEO has acknowledged that the theatrical window (a period of exclusivity) is gone. Aron seems to think the way forward for AMC, and the industry, is to embrace that streaming isn’t going away, but it is a business they can get in on. Plus, people are always going to want to go see certain movies in a theater, he argued. That includes movies like Warner Bros. Tenet, which will play exclusively in theaters instead of being released digitally — a decision that Aron commended.
“There are certain advantages to watching a film on a 40-foot screen to watching it on a 40-inch screen,” Aron said. “If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that people will do anything to get out of their house or their apartment. If you told me right now I could go spend three hours at a hardware store, I would tell you that’s an exciting afternoon.”
Cameron Diaz Says Walking Away From Acting ‘Was Like a Cleansing’
Being true to herself. Cameron Diaz opened up about her decision to retire from acting in 2018, after losing part of who she was through the work.
“A peace. I got a peace in my soul because I finally was taking care of myself,” Diaz, 47, told Gwyneth Paltrow in the Wednesday, August 5, episode of “In Goop Health: The Sessions” video series. “I feel grounded and light.”
The Charlie’s Angels actress, who hasn’t starred in a movie since 2014, noted that “it’s a strange thing to say” and that a “lot of people won’t understand” why she announced her retirement two years ago.
“It’s so intense to work at that level and be that public and put yourself out there,” Diaz explained. “There’s a lot of energy coming at you at all times when you’re really visible as an actor. I’m sensitive to some energy and not others. I do get the overwhelming energy of the attention that’s being put toward me.”
At one point, the California native, who married Good Charlotte rocker Benji Madden in 2015, said she paused and examined what her world outside of acting included and she wasn’t happy with what she saw.
“I really looked at my life and I saw what I had been — when you’re making a movie, it’s the perfect excuse, they own you — and I realized I handed off parts of my life to all these other people,” she said. “They took it. I basically had to take it back and take responsibility for my life.”
The new mom, who welcomed daughter Raddix in December 2019 via surrogate with husband Madden, 41, doesn’t regret her choice. “It was like a cleansing,” she noted.
The Avaline wine cofounder further explained that because actors are “infantilized” and taken care of constantly she had to break free.
“Overwhelming your life becomes so narrow. Everybody’s doing things for you and you’re catered around,” the Mask star told Paltrow, 47. “I never felt really, truly comfortable with that. I understood it was part of the job, and for me, I needed to become self-sufficient again.”
She added: “I really needed to know that I could take care of myself [and to learn] that I knew how to be an adult.”
After switching her life course, Diaz leaned on her husband and had to really figure out how she wanted to function moving forward.
“I learned a lot about myself. It’s painful. It hurts. It’s scary,” she revealed. “I credit Benj a lot. I broke that mirror about a thousand times when he put it up to me.”
Diaz first described herself as “actually retired” during an Entertainment Weekly interview in March 2018 alongside her The Sweetest Thing costars, Christina Applegate and Selma Blair. The Bad Teacher actress told fans during an Instagram Live chat in May 2020 that she’s “not going to do more films at the moment.”
Listen to Us Weekly’s Hot Hollywood as each week the editors of Us break down the hottest entertainment news stories! Source: US Magazine
Sports6 days ago
NYFC vs PT Dream11 Team Prediction Major League Soccer 2020: Captain, Vice-captain And Fantasy Tips For Today’s New York City FC vs Portland Timbers Football Match, Predicted XIs at Yankee Stadium 8 AM IST August 2
Music5 days ago
Watch Jane’s Addiciton reunite to perform for Lollapalooza
Tech5 days ago
Samsung Galaxy S10 Lite, Galaxy A50 get August 2020 security update
Sports4 days ago
England vs Paksitan 2020: Azhar Ali, Babar Azam Aim to Make Progress in ICC Test Rankings
Music5 days ago
BTS share title of upcoming English single
Music5 days ago
The 1975, Yungblud and many more UK artists unite to fight racism and intolerance
Music7 days ago
Hoops have split up following sex abuse claims against former member
Tech5 days ago
Apple products have a new ‘unpatchable’ security flaw in the Secure Enclave Chip: Report