Star Wars: 21 Crazy Revelations About Luke And Leia



When it comes to onscreen pairings that are permanent fixtures in pop culture, no movie duo is more recognizable than Luke and Leia, the brother and sister team from the Star Wars franchise. They first appeared in 1977’s Star Wars: A New Hope and both characters are now among the most beloved in movie history, thanks to a franchise that includes countless movies, books, video games and comic books.

The tale of the twins separated at birth, only to have fate bring them back together to save the galaxy, is widely known, even by those who wouldn’t necessarily think of themselves as pop culture geeks.

There is also a lot of information out there about Luke and Leia, including background information that only appears in media other than the movies (or in deleted film scenes). Some of this comes from the expanded universe, which is no longer considered canon, but much of it is recent, meaning that Disney has already approved of those particular details for the new Star Wars canon.

They both also appear in the new trilogy of Star Wars movies, which will, ultimately, wrap up their family’s saga. Although their stories are almost over, they will remain part of popular nerd culture forever.

Fans keep making discoveries about Luke and Leia every day. Some of these will blow the minds of other fans, while some of these will make complete sense with what fans already know of the characters.

Here are Star Wars: 21 Crazy Revelations About Luke And Leia.

21 Leia is two years older than Luke, even though they are twins

Star Wars isn’t exactly known for its accurate science, but that doesn’t mean that scientists don’t spend time trying to explain specific details in the franchise.

Luke and Leia are twins, but it always seemed like Leia was a little older. She was more mature than Luke at the beginning of the franchise, but one might explain that as the fact that she was fighting the Empire for a lot longer than her brother.

Science explains that she is the older of the two, thanks to the theory of relativity.

It all has to do with their travels in space: how far they traveled and how fast.

It’s a lengthy explanation, but students at the University of Leicester came up with the math that explains why Leia is older than her twin brother.

20 Their Lost adventure between Episode 3 and 4

Although the novels that came before Disney took over Star Wars are no longer considered canon, they still offer some interesting information about other adventures of Luke and Leia.

Splinter of the Mind’s Eye was the first full-length Star Wars novel, published in 1978, that sought to fill in events between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. In that book, Luke and Leia go on an eventual that has them searching for a Kaiburr Crystal, an ancient artifact of the Force that would later get the name Kyber Crystal.

Initially, these crystals gave those who held them the power to heal others, as well as other powers of the Force. It is also in this book that Luke severs Darth Vader’s mechanical hand.

19 Luke asked Leia to be his first Padawan

Although Luke started his journey as a padawan, he eventually earned the title of Jedi Master. That meant that he could take on students to train in the ways of the Force.

The first student Luke wanted to train was his sister Leia.

In Star Wars: The Last Jedi – The Visual Dictionary, Lucasfilm Story Group head Pablo Hidalgo wrote:

“She ultimately decided that the best path for her to serve the galaxy left no room for the extended isolation of Jedi training. As Leia on her new family and senatorial politics, Luke began his travels, largely disappearing from galactic view. During his lengthy journey, Skywalker gathered disciples who would go on to become his first true students.”

18 There was an alternate kissing scene between them

One scene that makes most Star Wars fans cringe is the scene in A New Hope where Luke and Leia kiss. It’s definitely creepy, considering we later find out they are brother and sister and many fans will fast-forward through that part of the DVD.

Here’s another detail about that awkward kiss, though: there was an alternate version. Don’t worry, though, that alternate version was equally as cringe-worthy.

Although no one knew that the two were brother and sister when it was filmed, it even seems like Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher felt like something was off. Watch this scene at your own peril because it’s still as weird as what made it into the final cut of the film.

17 Leia was trained in the Force by Luke

Many fans tend to forget that Leia being Luke’s sister as well as Darth Vader’s daughter means that she was strong with the Force, like her brother and father.

Although she turned Luke down when he asked her to join his Jedi Academy, Leia still received some training from him on how to use the Force. In the novel Aftermath: Life Debt, author Chuck Wendig writes that Luke trained his sister in the ways of the Force and that she even used the Force to figure out that she was pregnant with Ben Solo, aka Kylo Ren.

Fans surprised by Leia’s power in the Force during The Last Jedi shouldn’t have been so shocked.

This sensitivity to the Force is hinted at in previous movies and books, too.

16 In the original script, they weren’t related

Let’s get back to that kiss between Luke and Leia. It’s likely that this was a scene that happened before George Lucas decided that Luke and Leia were brother and sister. That would make the most sense, right?

In the first draft of The Empire Strikes Back based on Lucas’ story treatment for that film, there is a scene where Luke receives a visit from the spirit of his father, Anakin Skywalker.

In the script, Luke learns that he has a sister, but her name is Nellith, not Leia.

The Nellith name was later crossed out.

This first script also suggests that Lucas didn’t originally intend for Darth Vader to be Luke and Leia’s father.

15 Yoda wanted to train Leia instead of Luke

Leia receives a lot more credit for her Force abilities in the novels than she ever does in the films. In one such book, a collection of short stories called Star Wars: From A Certain Point of View, Star Wars fans learned that Yoda wanted to train Leia before Luke became his Padawan.

In the short story “There is Another”, Yoda has a conversation with the spirit of Obi-Wan Kenobi. In that discussion, Obi-Wan asks Yoda to train a “young Skywalker.” Yoda accepts, believing that Obi-Wan is referring to Leia.

Yoda becomes disappointed when he learns that Obi-Wan means Luke. Obviously, Yoda still agrees, because he goes on to train Luke in the movies.

14 Why Leia never became a Jedi

Although Luke wanted Leia to become his first student at the Jedi Academy, Leia refused. That leaves fans wondering what might have happened had she agreed. They will never know because Leia had an excellent reason to turn that offer down. In

Star Wars #40, Leia explains the reasoning behind her decision to her brother. Leia speaks about her father tasking her with getting the Death Star plans to Obi-Wan Kenobi– the most important thing she was ever asked to do. That moment defined her and made her realize that her duties were always with the Resistance first, and not with the Jedi.

In that comic, she tells Luke: “You know what I feel most? Duty. And knowing that I have to live up to it. We don’t all get to be dreamers.”

13 Leia felt when Luke perished in The Last Jedi

The novelization of The Last Jedi holds a lot of revealing information about Luke and Leia, as well as Luke’s final moments. In that book, it is evident that Leia knows that Luke has passed away.

As she sits in the Millennium Falcon with Chewbacca, the two characters have a very emotional moment. Leia finds herself overcome with emotion and the two embrace.

Her words to Chewbacca are: “It’s just us now, but we’ll find a way.”

The two are obviously still reeling from the passing of Han, but this also indicates that Leia is aware that Luke is gone now, too. This suggests that Leia felt it when Luke’s spirit moved on to become one with the Force.

12 Luke, Leia, and Han once hijacked a Star Destroyer

Luke, Leia, and Han were an essential part of the Rebellion fighting against the Empire. They had a lot of adventures in books and movies that never made it on film, but that doesn’t mean that they didn’t happen — unless, of course, those adventures were part of the expanded universe, which Disney retconned.

In Star Wars #22, the three got together to do something big: they formulated a plan to steal a massive Imperial weapon, the Star Destroyer Harbinger.

That story was so exciting that it’s a shame it’s something that fans will never get to see on film. For those who haven’t read the comic, though, find it now: it’s an issue worth reading.

11 They were stranded on a island together

The Star Wars comics do an excellent job of filling in some of the blanks of things that happened to Luke and Leia between movies. Star Wars #33 was one of those stories that happened between events of A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back. That means that Luke and Leia did not know that they were brother and sister.

In that issue, the two were stranded on an island, trying desperately to get a message to the Rebellion to find them.

While stranded, they, fortunately, did not kiss again, but spent a lot of time bonding in other ways.

Leia spoke about losing her home planet, and they shared stories about their childhoods.

10 Luke spent more time with Ben/Kylo than Leia did

It is typical for a child strong in the Force to leave their family at an early age to train at the Jedi Academy. When Leia and Han realized that their son, Ben (who would later become Kylo Ren), had inherited the Skywalker talent for the Force, they decided to send him to the Jedi Academy run by his uncle, Luke.

This means that Leia spent very little time with her son while he was growing up. Instead, Ben grew up on the island under his uncle’s tutelage.

The novel Bloodline has Leia sending messages to her son from time to time, and also reveals that much of her relationship with Han is also long-distance.

9 Luke and Leia spent time grieving the passing of Han

The problem with movies is that so much of the good stuff ends up on the editing room floor to make room for more vital scenes scenes. Deleted scenes that fans wanted to see might turn up later on a DVD release or the Internet, and often, these are scenes that flesh out the story told in the movie.

One deleted scene from The Last Jedi had Leia and Luke grieving for the loss of Han. The scene showed Luke having learned about Han’s passing from Rey: he sits in his hut alone with tears in his eyes. The scene then shifts to one of Leia in a similar pose, also grieving for the passing of Han.

8 They know who their real mother was

The novel Bloodline revealed a lot of details about Leia, but also some relevant information about Luke, too. By the time the novel takes place, slightly before The Force Awakens, Luke and Leia both know about their birth mother, Padme Amidala.

Leia knew she was adopted in the novel Leia, Princess of Alderaan, which focuses on Leia’s life before she joined the Rebellion, so it makes sense that she would eventually learn the truth of her real mother and share that information with her brother.

Bloodline reveals that Leia found inspiration in her mother.

Part of the reason that Leia chose a career in politics, rather than become a Jedi, was because of her mother’s work in the Senate.

7 They also hid their father’s identity from the world

Bloodline also reveals that no one outside of Luke and Leia’s small circle of friends knew who their birth father was. Having Darth Vader for a father certainly could do damage to their reputation, especially since they had become the heroes of the galaxy and had helped save their world from the evil Empire, under Vader’s leadership.

This was a secret that the twins held very dearly, but in the novel Bloodline, that secret gets out.

A Senator comes across the truth about Luke and Leia’s parentage and makes it public.

This puts Leia at a disadvantage in the Senate and destroys her reputation, in spite of her previous work to save the galaxy.

6 They went to Crait long before The Last Jedi

Before the Resistance set up their headquarters on Crait, Luke and Leia had traveled there to check out the planet as a potential post for the Resistance.

This happens in the comic book Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Storms of Crait #1, a prequel to The Last Jedi. Crait was once a Rebel outpost, mentioned in previous Star Wars novels, with white sands and red soil.

That Rebel outpost was initially set up by Leia’s adoptive father, Bail Organa. The Rebels abandoned the post before the Battle of Scarif (as seen in Rogue One), but it later became a Resistance outpost, as seen in The Last Jedi, when the Resistance fought the First Order.

5 They were both supposed to survive until Episode 9

Although the Star Wars franchise has already seen the loss of two major characters, Han and Luke, the original plan for all three characters was to keep them alive until Episode 9.

Lucas’ initial plan for the Star Wars franchise was to have Luke pass away at the end of Episode 9.

This would have happened after Luke trained Leia.

Obviously, none of this happened in the movies, as Luke passed away in The Last Jedi.

Granted, the general consensus is that the Skywalker story will come to an end with Episode 9, which goes along with Lucas’ original plans.

4 Leia felt their mother Padme in the Force

Although the novels and newer movies have shown that Leia has a sensitivity to the Force, that wasn’t always the case with the original trilogy. There is one scene that showed that Leia was as sensitive to the Force as her brother.

In Return of the Jedi, Luke asks Leia about their real mother and if she remembered her. Leia responds in the affirmative, mentioning that her mother passed when she was very young.

Although many thought she was referring to her adoptive mother, that is likely not the case. Instead, Leia referred to Padme Amidala, her birth mother. This means that Leia knew that she was adopted, a detail later confirmed in the novel Bloodline.

3 The Last Jedi proved that Leia was as tapped into the Force as Luke

One of the most controversial scenes from The Last Jedi is when Leia ends up blasted out to space, and she’s floating out there unconscious, but somehow uses the Force to bring herself back to her ship.

Many fans argued that Leia could not do this and that she didn’t know how to use the Force in a way that would make this possible. Looking at all the material that Disney considers as canon, that scene was just additional proof that Leia knew how to use the Force.

The Force is part of her very being.

Fans can continue to argue about that scene being unrealistic, but given all the evidence to the contrary, it’s as believable as anything Luke ever did with the Force.

2 Leia knew that Luke was a Force Projection the entire time

One of the biggest surprises at the end of The Last Jedi involved the big battle scene between Luke and Kylo Ren. The reveal that Luke was merely projecting himself to Crait to give the Resistance time to flee the First Order left many fans with their jaws dropped, shaking their heads.

Then Luke appears to Leia one final time.

But here’s something that The Last Jedi novelization makes clear: Leia knew that Luke was a projection all along. For those who go back and rewatch that scene, keep an eye on Leia’s expressions. There is knowledge in her eyes about precisely what’s going on.

1 Their circular stories

In A New Hope, Luke comes across R2-D2, a robot that holds a message from Princess Leia for Obi-Wan Kenobi. That message plays as a hologram, or a projection, that asks for help, beginning Luke’s story in the franchise.

Because of that hologram, Luke’s life changes forever: he goes on to become a Jedi and help Leia. So it makes sense that Luke’s story would end in a similar fashion.

In The Last Jedi, Luke’s last act is as a projection, which buys the Resistance time in the battle against the First Order. It is Luke’s projection that helps Leia and her team.

Cracked writer JM McNab explained the significance: “Just realized that Luke Skywalker’s story begins with Leia sending a projection of herself asking for help, and ends with Luke sending a projection to help Leia.”

Are there any other important details about Luke and Leia’s bond in Star Wars? Let us know in the comments!





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The Predator’s Opening Weekend Box Office May Not Top AvP



The Predator movie is currently projected to make $25-$30 million in its opening weekend, less than the opening weekend tally for 2004’s Alien Vs. Predator. However, The Predator should still do well enough to win its opening weekend against relatively soft competition. Concerns about the film have been raised after director Shane Black decided to reshoot the entire third act, having decided the original ending simply didn’t work.

The newest attempt at reviving the Predator franchise has ties to the first movie through writer-director Black, who co-wrote and acted in the 1987 Arnold Schwarzenegger original. The new movie features several twists on the classic Predator premise, including Predators who have enhanced themselves using the DNA of their vanquished foes. This time around, the stakes are higher as the Predators are interested in more than just big-game hunting.

Related: The Predator: Shane Black Doubts There Will Be Alternate Cut

20th Century Fox is hoping the newest Predator movie will prove to be a big hit for them when it opens in three weeks, but right now, tracking is indicating the movie will be at best a modest success. As Variety reports, early projections suggest an opening somewhere in the $25-$30 million range for Black’s reboot. That should be enough to top the other new openers on that same weekend, including the Blake Lively-Anna Kendrick thriller A Simple Favor (projected to make between $12-$15 million) and Matthew McConaughey’s White Boy Rick ($5-$9 million).

The Predator’s toughest competition may come from the second weekend of The Nun, which is projected to make $32-$40 million in its opening, though The Nun would have to hold a lot of its audience in its second weekend to again challenge for the top spot. Compared to earlier Predator films, the current projections for The Predator are on the somewhat disappointing end. Alien Vs. Predator, a spinoff film that doesn’t even qualify as canon in many people’s eyes, opened to $38 million when it came out in August 2004. That film went on to make just $80 million domestically despite the big opening.

Alien Vs. Predator’s $38 million bow actually represents the biggest first weekend ever for a Predator film. The original movie, modestly budgeted at just $15 million, opened to $12 million at a time when studios didn’t necessarily aim for huge openings. That film went on to gross $59 million domestically, which translates to $141 million when adjusted for ticket-price inflation. Of course, the first Predator would go on to become a classic, with a healthy post-theatrical life on home video and cable.

Subsequent Predator films have failed to achieve the same iconic status as the first movie, despite various efforts to freshen up the formula. The last reboot/sequel attempt, 2010’s Predators, opened with just $24 million its first weekend on the way to a limp $52 million domestic gross. Black’s The Predator should do slightly better than Predators did in its first weekend, but that might not reassure Fox very much. In terms of overseas prospects, the movie looks weak given its lack of bankable stars. It remains to be seen if The Predator ultimately performs well enough to warrant sequels, or if Black’s movie will once-and-for-all spell the end of the venerable sci-fi/horror series.

More: The Predator: Every Update You Need To Know

Source: Variety



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Academy Members Already Discussing Scrapping Controversial Popular Movie Oscar



According to a recent report, Academy members have said that they wouldn’t be surprised if the Oscars Popular Filmcategory gets scrapped completely. In early August, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed their plans to instate a new category that would honor “popular films” at the 2019 Oscars. The Academy has been tight-lipped regarding specific details about the new category, but it seems to be tailored for big summer blockbusters and superhero films.

Though the Academy might have had good intentions, the “Popular Film” category wasn’t well received by the public. Many outlets and people on social media have called the “Popular Film” award an insult, while others claim it’s simply the Academy’s a feeble attempt to boost dwindling ratings. Whatever the case, the category has become extremely controversial. The Academy hasn’t officially responded to the backlash; however, several Academy members recently shared that they wouldn’t be surprised if the new award gets scrapped.

Related: We Break Down Black Panther’s Oscars 2019 Chances

The LA Times recently released an article detailing Black Panther’s hunt for a Best Picture nomination at the 2019 Oscars. In the article, they reference the new Popular Film category as a wildcard that could hurt the film’s hopes for a Best Picture nod. However, many Academy members that they spoke to shared their opinion on whether or not the new award would even be included in future ceremonies. The excerpt from the article reads as follows: “Several academy members say they wouldn’t be surprised if the academy backtracks and delays presenting the award this year or scraps it altogether.”

While the Academy hasn’t officially commented on the matter, the above excerpt is very intriguing. By now, the Academy has certainly  heard all the complaints surrounding the new category and seem to be debating whether to move forward as planned. Which makes complete sense, since the idea of a Popular Film category is completely divisive and problematic. On one hand, it would be a nice change of pace to see more mainstream films included in future Oscar ceremonies. On the other hand, the whole award could be seen as a consolation prize. If genuinely award worthy films like Black Panther get snubbed for Best Picture, but get placed in the popular film category, it seems like the Academy is just judging films based on genre rather than content.

Apart from the new Popular Film category, the Academy has struggled to understand the current status of film culture. A few years ago, the Oscars were slammed for not being inclusive; however, they have taken steps to rectify that by including more films starring and directed by people of color. Now they face the issue of genre bias by excluding horror, science fiction and superhero films – with a few exceptions. The two problems aren’t comparative when it comes to social importance, though it does speak to how the Academy needs to evolve. Hopefully, the Academy will act accordingly in the face of public concern and start judging the content and importance of a film regardless of what genre it happens to be in.

More: New Oscar Rules: How We Think The Academy Will Decide If A Film Is “Popular”

Source: LA Times



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Graphic Novel My Boyfriend Is A Bear Is Getting A Movie Adaptation



The graphic novel My Boyfriend is a Bear, created by author Pamela Ribon and illustrator Cat Farris, is being adapted into a movie. Published earlier this year by Oni Press, My Boyfriend is a Bear follows a girl named Nora who has terrible taste in men. While on a hike in the hills of Los Angeles, Nora meets a 500-pound American Black Bear, who turns out to be the best boyfriend she’s ever had. However, between Nora’s judgemental friends and family, as well as the bear’s need to hibernate during the winter, it remains to be seen if Nora can make the relationship work.

The quirky graphic novel romance has received praise since hitting shelves in April and now it will find a whole new audience as it’s set on the track to becoming a movie. It seems that Hollywood’s recent interest in romantic comedies, paired with the industry’s love of adapting comics and graphic novels to film, will help bring Ribon and Farris’ work to the big screen as the film rights to My Boyfriend is a Bear have been attained.

Related: Every Female-Driven DC Comics Movie in Development

Variety reports that Legendary Entertainment has acquired the worldwide movie rights to My Boyfriend is a Bear. Additionally, Legendary has set Ribon to executive produce and pen the script of the movie, a rare if not unprecedented move for a film adaptation (I Kill Giants‘ writer Joe Kelly wrote both the graphic novel and the 2018 movie adaptation). The My Boyfriend is a Bear movie will also be executive produced by Alex Hertzberg.

In addition to writing My Boyfriend is a Bear, Ribon has also worked on a number of comics titles, including Rick and Morty comics for Oni Press and the comic series SLAM! at BOOM! Studios, which she co-created with artist Veronica Fish. Further, Ribon has experience in the realm of animated movie writing, having co-written Disney’s upcoming Wreck-It Ralph sequel, Ralph Breaks the Internet, as well as working on Moana and Smurfs: The Lost Village.

Currently, it’s unclear if the My Boyfriend is a Bear movie will be adapted as a live-action or animated property. Ribon’s screenwriting experience seems to be mostly in the realm of animated fare, which positions her perfectly to adapt her own graphic novel for the medium. However, the concept could also work in live-action with the bear created through CGI. Hollywood has seen a rise in movies that blend live-action with a great deal of CGI effects, like Disney’s 2016 hit The Jungle Book and upcoming video game movies, Legendary’s own Detective Pikachu and Paramount’s Sonic the Hedgehog.

No matter whether it’s animated or features a combination of live-action and CGI, My Boyfriend is a Bear has an incredibly unique premise for a romantic comedy that’s sure to gain the attention of moviegoers. With Ribon on board to write the adaptation, it’s sure to capture the heart of the graphic novel. Now, fans will have to wait and see to learn more about My Boyfriend is a Bear.

Next: Fall 2018 Movie Preview – The 30 Films to See

Source: Variety



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Big Bang Theory’s Mayim Bialik Not Happy About Show Ending



It’s been less than a day since it was announced that The Big Bang Theory will come to an end after its upcoming 12th season, and not everyone is happy with the news, specifically star Mayim Bialik. The hit CBS sitcom will end its 12-season run as the longest-running multi-cam sitcom in TV history, but given how strong the ratings still are (14 million viewers per episode last season), and the fact that there is already a successful spin-off (Sheldon), some may wonder why the end is coming now. There are already rumors circulating about why the show is ending now, and while those may or may not be true, they will not change the fact that the end is near.

Shortly after the official announcement was made, a rumor surfaced that claimed the show is ending because series star Jim Parsons refused to return. CBS was reportedly trying to negotiate a deal with the show’s primary stars – Jim Parsons, Kaley Cuoco, Johnny Galecki, Kunal Nayyar, and Simon Helberg – where each of them could have earned upwards of $50 million for two more seasons of the show, earning $1 million per episode plus other profits. Parsons reportedly wouldn’t agree to those terms, which lead to the decision to end The Big Bang Theory after the upcoming 12th season. Still, that report has yet to be confirmed, and neither Parsons nor his reps have commented on that report.

Related: CBS Having Discussions About The Big Bang Theory Season 13 

Bialik took to her website Grok Nation to address the show coming to an end, and she’s not too pleased about it. The actress started her blog post by revealing that yesterday was a big day, because she received an undeserved parking ticket, had an intense therapy session, her son tried soccer for the first time, and she also found out that she would be out of a job after this season. Here’s an excerpt from her full blog post below, where she doesn’t pull any punches about The Big Bang Theory going off the air.

“Am I happy? Of course not. This has been my job since Melissa Rauch and I joined the cast as regulars in season 4. I love my job. I love my castmates, and I feel such appreciation for our incredible crew, our brave writers, our entire staff, and our amazing fans. So many people are a part of our Big Bang family. This is hard. I love coming to work and pretending to be Amy. She’s a riot. She’s me, and I am her. And soon she will not be mine to create.”

Bialik didn’t address the rumors that Parsons may or may not be responsible for the show coming to an end, but she did add that the show coming to an end is “very sad,” and that she thinks it will be difficult “not to cry every day for the next 23 episodes.” Bialik’s blog post also comes after Cuoco addressed the show’s ending in an Instagram post, while also sharing a new photo of the cast. The final season is slated to debut Monday, September 24 (before moving to its regular Thursday time slot on September 27), and it was also revealed at Comic-Con that season 12 will feature a connection to the Sheldon spinoff.

It’s certainly understandable that Bialik would be upset about The Big Bang Theory going off the air, especially since the viewership is still quite strong. Bialik doesn’t exactly have the same big-money deal in place like the five main stars do, and while it remains to be seen what the future holds for the actress, she does seem optimistic and thankful for the opportunity to star in the biggest comedy series in America.

More: Macaulay Culkin Explains Why He Turned Down a Starring Role on The Big Bang Theory

The Big Bang Theory season 12 premieres on Monday, September 24 on CBS.

Source: Grok Nation



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Suspiria’s Main Cast: Then and Now



Luca Guadagnino’s remake of Suspiria looks to be just as stylized and abstract as Dario Argento’s original horror classic, but it’s not without some subtle differences – specifically with the main cast. A year after earning critical acclaim for his adaptation of André Aciman’s novel Call Me By Your Name, Guadagnino is delving into vastly different genre territory with Suspiria, a hellish dive into death, darkness, and desperation.

In Suspiria, an American dance student from New York named Susie Bannion (played by Dakota Johnson) travels to Berlin’s Markos Dance Academy to study under the tutelage of Madame Blanc (played by Tilda Swinton), among other instructors. However, after the death of a former student, Susie is quick to realize that something sinister exists within the heart of the academy, thrusting her deeper and deeper into a web of horrors from which she may not come out alive. With a screenplay penned by David Kajganich (who also penned the upcoming adaptation of Stephen King’s Pet Sematary), Suspiria also stars Tilda Swinton, Mia Goth, and Chloë Grace Moretz.

Related: Suspiria: The Three Mothers Explained

While this remake appears to be staying relatively true to the source material (though Guadagnino and Argento obviously have different styles), there are some curious changes that specifically revolve around the cast. With a larger roster of instructors from the academy (including Renée Soutendijk as Miss Huller and Ingrid Caven as Miss Vendegast, who may or may not be an updated take on the original movie’s Professor Verdegast, played by Renato Scarpa) and notable characters who aren’t credited, but appear to show up in the trailer, like Daniel, the academy’s blind piano player, Guadagnino appears to be taking some artistic liberties with his remake, which may end up leading to unexpected results.

Jessica Harper and Dakota Johnson as Suzy/Susie Bannion

The audience’s window into Suspiria’s diabolic province is Susie Bannion (or Suzy in the original), an American dance student who quickly discovers that nothing is as it seems at Berlin’s Markos Dance Academy. Played by Jessica Harper in the original and Dakota Johnson in the remake, one noticeable difference between the two interpretations – at least from what the trailers convey – is that Johnson’s Susie seems far less suspicious, and significantly more fearless, than Harper’s portrayal. Incidentally, Harper also cameos in the remake as a character named Anke.

Stefania Casini and Mia Goth as Sara

Susie’s roommate and fellow Markos Dance Academy skeptic, Sara (played by Stefania Casini in the original and Mia Goth in the remake) is confident that there is foul play surrounding the academy, though she isn’t certain of the cause. She offers Susie some narrative breadcrumbs with which the two might unravel the academy’s dark secrets, but might be in more danger than Susie herself, given that she’s been a student for a longer period of time.

Joan Bennett and Tilda Swinton as Madame Blanc

The lead dance instructor/director at Markos Dance Academy, Madame Blanc (played by Joan Bennett in the original and Tilda Swinton in the remake) takes her work very seriously. So seriously, in fact, that her darker, secret agenda isn’t exactly difficult to point out. She has sinister ambitions, and she’s not the shining example of a role model Susie might have been expecting.

Related: Halloween 2018 Director Reflects on Almost Remaking Suspiria

Alida Valli and Angela Winkler as Miss Tanner

Another one of Markos’ dance instructors is Miss Tanner (played by Alida Valli in the original and Angela Winkler in the remake). She is one of several members of staff who, like Madame Blanc, are not entirely who they appear. In fact, her strict demeanor plays into the darker role she inhabits, which is revealed later on in the movie.

Eva Axén and Chloe Grace-Moretz as Patricia Hingle

A student dancer at Markos, Pat Hingle (or Patricia Hingle in the remake) offers the first overt sign in Suspiria that something is wrong within the academy. After discovering the school’s dark secret, Patricia (played by Eva Axén in the original and Chloe Grace-Moretz in the remake) attempts to flee. Unfortunately, the odds are against her from the get-go.

Udo Kier and Lutz Ebersdorf as Dr. Frank Mandel/Dr. Jozef Klemperer

One of the more curious character changes in the Suspiria remake is based on the role of Dr. Frank Mandel, originally played by Udo Kier. He plays a pivotal role in Suzy’s hunt to uncover the truth about the dance academy. However, even though Mandel isn’t featured in the remake, there is a different character named Dr. Jozef Klemperer (played by Lutz Ebersdorf) who appears to serve a similar purpose, attempting to help uncover the school’s secret. The main difference, aside from age, is that Klemperer appears to have been personally affected by the school’s dark secret.

Goblin and Thom Yorke as Composers

In the original Suspiria, the music is easily as much of a character as the actors themselves. The Italian rock group Goblin supplied an original composition to Argento’s movie, crafting the movie’s trademark haunting score – so it’s only right to acknowledge the differences between their work and the score from Radiohead’s Thom Yorke for the remake. Judging by the latest trailer, which features some of Yorke’s score, the remake’s composition has a similarly dreamy and eerie sound to that of Goblin’s, but subtler, and with less synth (so far, at least).

More: 2018 Fall Movie Preview: The 30 Films to See



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Twitch Will Stream Every Pokemon Episode & Movie Starting Next Week



Twitch announces that, starting next week, they are going to stream every single episode of Pokemon, as well as all of the movies. The Pokemon anime series first aired way back in 1997; over 1,000 episodes, as well as 16 movies and a hugely successful video game franchise, have been released since Ash overslept on the day he was supposed to collect his very first Pokemon.

Pokemon has enjoyed success across several platforms ever since Satoshi Tajiri came up with the idea for the franchise’s first two video games – Pokemon Blue and Pokemon Red. Now, 23 years since the first game was released, Twitch has decided to pay their respects to the franchise by streaming every Pokemon episode and movie as part of what they are calling their “biggest marathon yet.”

Related: Pokémon the Movie: The Power of Us Getting Theatrical Release

On their official blog, Twitch revealed that the marathon will start airing over at twitchpresents/ at 10am PT on August 27. They’re planning on running the first 19 seasons of the show, as well as all 16 movies. The marathon will be accessible to people all over the world, as it will be streamed in six different languages: English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, and Brazilian Portuguese.

To make things even more interesting, Twitch has decided to add an interesting and unique feature to the marathon, which they have called, “Twitch Presents: Pokemon Badge Collector”. This feature invites the viewer to partake in a competition, in which the objective is to catch as many on-screen Pokemon as possible. In order to stand a chance, viewers will have to tune in to as much of the marathon as possible, as there will definitely be some dedicated fans out there trying their luck at becoming a Pokemon Master. Twitch has also announced that there may be a few rare Pokemon up for grabs, too – but they should be pretty easy to catch, if you know what you’re doing.

Each week will feature a run of episodes airing from Monday to Thursday, which will run again each Friday and Saturday for anybody who missed out. Every Sunday, Twitch will stream one of the 16 movies at 10am PT. Twitch plans to run this marathon for a gargantuan 10 months, which Pokemon fans all over the world will be delighted to hear. Also, don’t forget that the developers of Pokemon: GO! are working on an animated Netflix series, and that the upcoming Detective Pikachu movie is set to release in 2019.

If you’re interested in watching the marathon, or partaking in the Pokemon Badge Collector tournament, tune in from August 27 at 10am PT, and prepare for 10 months of Pokemania!

More: You Won’t Believe How Much Money Pokémon GO Has Made

Source: Twitch



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Joaquin Phoenix Doesn’t Care About Expectations for the Joker Movie



Joaquin Phoenix says he isn’t worried about fan expectations for her performance as the Clown Prince of Crime in the Joker movie. The actor has further emphasized that he isn’t approaching Joker as a superhero comic book film, but rather as a compelling study of a character who just happens to be an iconic Batman villain.

While he’s been approached for comic book film roles in the past, Phoenix has typically steered clear of franchise movies to date and instead stuck with primarily offbeat and/or director-driven projects (see his role in next month’s quirky western The Sisters Brothers, for example). As such, most everyone was surprised when Phoenix was reported to be circling Joker, an origin movie for the titular supervillain that Todd Phillips (The Hangover trilogy, War Dogs) is directing and cowriting. The Oscar-nominee has officially signed on for the project since then and will be joined by a big-name ensemble that already includes Robert De Niro, Deadpool 2‘s Zazie Beetz, and GLOW‘s Marc Maron in prominent roles.

Related: Zazie Beetz’s Joker Movie Role Revealed

In an interview with IndieWire to promote The Sisters Brothers, Phoenix was (naturally) asked about Joker and how he’s handling the expectations that come with playing a comic book villain that was previously brought to life in live-action by names like Jack Nicholson, Jared Leto, and Heath Ledger in an Oscar-winning turn. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the actor is far from concerned with what fans think about him taking on the Joker role to begin with:

“I could care less. I don’t really think that much about what people think. Who cares, who cares? My approach to every movie is the same. What I’m interested in is the filmmaker and the idea of the character.”

All things considered, Phoenix’s response in this interview is in keeping with his previous comments about Joker. By his own admittance, the actor has wanted to make a relatively lower-budgeted comic book movie like Joker for years, but always envisioned it as being closer to a character study along the lines of Lynne Ramsay’s grimly meditative You Were Never Really Here (which hit theaters earlier this year, with Phoenix starring), rather than a colorful supervillain feature. In other words: Phoenix has clearly never been particularly concerned about the expectations that fans have for any film adaptation of a comic book character (be it Joker or a comparatively obscure villain), so it would arguably be odd for him to start worrying about that now.

Then again, Joker doesn’t have to deal with the same kind of expectations that other upcoming DC movies are facing, anyway. Since the film isn’t part of the Justice League continuity that started with Man of Steel in 2013, there’s greater room for Phoenix and Phillips to experiment and push the boundaries of the comic book movie genre through their film, without having to be concerned about how its reception could impact other DC adaptations in the future. That’s all the more reason for Phoenix especially to “not care” about what people think – and instead, focus on delivering a Joker performance that he feels is worthwhile and satisfying, standing on its own.

MORE: Every Joker Movie Update You Need to Know

Source: IndieWire



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Capcom Reveals Aliens Inspiration For Resident Evil 2 Remake’s Sherry



Capcom’s upcoming Resident Evil 2 takes influence from James Cameron’s Aliens for an updated twist on the character of Sherry Birkin. While both Resident Evil and Fox’s Alien franchise have become synonymous with horror movies and gaming, the two now have a bigger connection.

The recent Resident Evil 2 screenshots showed off a revamped Claire Redfield and a new look for Sherry, too. It turns out that there is a deliberate homage to Aliens hiding in plain sight. Remembering back to 1986, Cameron’s action-packed sequel saw Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley marooned with a group of Colonial Marines on the LV-426 mining colony. Alongside the hard-faced grunts, actress Carrie Henn played a young girl called Newt.

Related: Capcom Worried Fans Wouldn’t Like Resident Evil 2 Remake Changes

Speaking to Eurogamer at this year’s Gamescom, Resident Evil 2 director Kazunori Kadoi revealed how he wanted a more developed version of Sherry and used Newt as the game’s blueprint, “Newt from Aliens was something of a reference point. The first time you meet her and seeing, yeah, she’s seen some serious stuff!” He continued on how the reimagined game needed an older Sherry who has experienced more of the zombie apocalypse:

“She’s definitely someone now who feels a bit more like she has her own personality. She’s thinking in her mind and she’s got her own motivations. We’re trying to take some of that stuff that was slightly unnatural and add depth to it.”

The 1998 game turned Sherry into a plot device that helped drive the game forward and she is largely remembered for being a child in distress. With Resident Evil 2‘s update following Claire as she finds Sherry behind a pile of boxes, it also echoes the scene from Aliens where Ripley finds Newt hiding in a ventilation system. Aliens added a more human side to Ripley and it sounds like this bond is something Claire and Sherry will share in Resident Evil 2.

Capcom has asked gamers not to call Resident Evil 2 a remake and has dubbed it more of a reimagining. This wording makes sense for why developers are creating a different version of Sherry instead of a straight rehash of her old stereotype. Even though developers have clearly put more thought into 2019’s Sherry, only time will tell what classic Resident Evil fandom thinks of her changes.

Sherry isn’t the only character undergoing an overhaul, but Kadoi says that Capcom is keeping its cards close to its chest when it comes to who else has been changed and how. While the crux of the story will focus on the campaigns of Leon S. Kennedy and Claire, fan-favorite characters like Ada Wong, William Birkin, and a revamped Martin Branagh will all be back for more.

With Capcom teasing that Resident Evil 2 could be the start of a reimagined franchise, the latest iteration of Sherry could be back for more Resident Evil games in the future. Check out the new Leon, Claire, Sherry, and the rest of the gang when Resident Evil 2 returns to consoles in 2019.

More: Resident Evil 2 Remake WON’T Draw Inspiration From Resident Evil 1.5

Source: Eurogamer



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The Happytime Murders Review: A Muppet Movie Misfire



The Happytime Murders mines all its comedy from R-rated puppet antics and Melissa McCarthy’s typical schtick, but the jokes quickly wear thin.

Jim Henson and his puppets have had a lasting and undeniable impact on the entertainment industry. From staples of children’s television like Sesame Street and The Muppet Show to darker fare like The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth, generations of young viewers grew up watching Henson-style puppets and content created by the man himself. His legacy lives on with the continuation of Sesame Street and other Muppet properties, and now with the feature-length film The Happytime Murders. Produced by Henson Alternative, a banner that creates media for adults within the larger Jim Henson Company, The Happytime Murders draws on noir-style detective mysteries for an adult comedic take on Henson’s puppets. The Happytime Murders mines all its comedy from R-rated puppet antics and Melissa McCarthy’s typical schtick, but the jokes quickly wear thin.

The Happytime Murders follows former police detective – and first puppet cop – Phil Phillips (Bill Barretta), who works as a private investigator in Los Angeles, California. However, while investigating an extortion threat, Phil stumbles into a murder scene. Soon after, his own brother Larry Shenanigans (Victor Yerrid) is murdered, and Phil makes the connection that the murderer is targeting cast members of the ’80s television show The Happytime Gang. To solve the case, Phil must work with his former partner, Detective Connie Edwards (Melissa McCarthy), but the two haven’t gotten along since Phil left the department in disgrace 12 years prior.

However, when more cast members of The Happytime Gang are murdered, Phil and Connie resolve to work together. Unfortunately, Phil’s ex-girlfriend Jenny (Elizabeth Banks) is next on the list and he’s determined to protect her. As Phil and Connie get closer to discovering the serial killer responsible for the murders, they dive deeper into the world of sugar addiction that plagues puppets, all while being forced to confront the realities of a world in which puppets are second-class citizens to humans. The investigation takes a turn for the worse when FBI Agent Campbell (Joel McHale) starts interfering, and Phil and Connie find they need all the help they can get – including from Phil’s secretary, Bubbles (Maya Rudolph). Still, it remains to be seen if they’ll be able to solve the case of the Happytime Murders before it’s too late.

Directed by Jim Henson’s son Brian Henson (The Muppet Christmas Carol), the movie’s logistics greatly benefit from having a director who’s familiar with puppeteering. The Happytime Murders is, for the most part, effective in portraying the puppets of its world as sentient beings – even if the actual details of the mythology don’t hold up to much scrutiny. Still, it’s clear that The Happytime Murders wanted to portray a version of L.A. where humans and puppets coexist side by side and that world believably comes to life thanks to the work of Henson and the film’s team of puppeteers. However, The Happytime Murders script by Todd Berger (Kung Fu Panda: Secrets of the Masters, It’s A Disaster), from a story by Burger and Dee Austin Robertson (I Kill Flowers to Save the World), leaves something to be desired.

While the story of The Happytime Murders is structured like a classic noir detective mystery, complete with a voiceover performed by Phil narrating the events of the film, the crime investigation aspect of the movie is pretty standard. It hits all the usual beats of a murder mystery and even the third act twist is predictable enough that it feels less surprising and more like a another story beat to check off. The Happytime Murders also clumsily tries to use its puppet-filled world as a metaphor for classism, racism and sexism in modern America, as puppets are persecuted and made to be the butt of offensive jokes. However, those themes aren’t really developed and are largely forgotten once the murder mystery storyline kicks into gear. Instead, positioning the puppets as a race that has been historically persecuted is more offensive and ridiculous than the smart social commentary The Happytime Murders clearly wants its audience to believe it is.

Perhaps the most successful aspect of the movie is the odd couple pairing of Barretta’s Phil and McCarthy’s Connie. Their dynamic works well during the brief glimpses of a funnier movie, but it’s heavily weighed down by The Happytime Murders insisting the funniest joke is a puppet at the center of R-rated antics – swearing, doing drugs, being murdered or having sex – and McCarthy’s usual schtick. She yells shrilly, partakes in some of the R-rated shenanigans, and is the butt of many jokes about how she looks like a man. (What is it with McCarthy’s movies always trying to make jokes about her looking like a man, anyway?) Still, beyond McCarthy and Barretta, the cast has some strong hitters. Both Elizabeth Banks and Maya Rudolph are so earnest and hilarious it feels as if they’re in a different movie; though they have much smaller roles, they nail their performances as Jenny and Bubbles, respectively. Additionally, as previously stated, the puppeteers excel in bringing the individual puppet characters to life in The Happytime Murders.

Ultimately, The Happytime Murders comes across as if someone cracked the joke, “What if we made an R-rated Muppet movie?” and the entire story, script and cast was created from there. Throughout the entire film, the characters are put into various situations that would be crude or violent if depicted with humans, but are meant to be funny for the sole reason that they’re depicted with puppets. To the film’s credit, the trailers for The Happytime Murders made it seem as though that’s exactly what to expect from the puppet murder mystery. So The Happytime Murders will likely be exactly what moviegoers are expecting based on the trailers for the film, but that also means the movie doesn’t try to do anything truly revolutionary – beyond, perhaps, the technical skill of bringing the puppets in the movie to life.

As such, those who were intrigued by the trailers for The Happytime Murders or the concept of an R-rated puppet comedy may find the movie entertaining enough through its one and a half hour runtime. Or, for fans of McCarthy’s brand of humor, she brings plenty of the comedy that viewers would expect from her based on the films she’s done in the last decade. However, The Happytime Murders offers little else, so anyone not already interested in seeing the movie is perfectly fine skipping this late-summer release. Jim Henson may have secured a lasting legacy in Hollywood, but The Happytime Murders seems destined to be a more forgettable release from The Jim Henson Company.

Trailer

The Happytime Murders starts playing in U.S. theaters Thursday evening August 23. It runs 91 minutes and is rated R for strong crude and sexual content and language throughout, and some drug material.

Let us know what you thought of the film in the comments section!



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