‘Booksmart’ Film Review: Olivia Wilde Makes a Splashy Directorial Debut With Witty Coming-of-Age Comedy

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How do you begin describing the movie you have been unknowingly waiting for your entire life? Do I start by telling you how incredibly hilarious “Booksmart” is? Or do I tell you how first-time feature film director Olivia Wilde created a resoundingly smart, inclusive, modern and revolutionary film for today’s teens?

How about this: “Booksmart” is, by far, one of the most perfect coming-of-age comedies I have ever seen.

Ride-or-die best friends and academic overachievers Amy (Kaitlyn Dever) and Molly (Beanie Feldstein) are a day shy of their high school graduation. Molly belatedly discovers that while she and Amy solely focused on homework, studying, and getting a fake ID solely for the purposes of using an all-night college library throughout high school, her partying peers are somehow also heading to Ivy League schools. Determined to have one last blast of hedonism before high school ends, she convinces Amy to go out with her for a night they will never forget.

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Feldstein and Dever have a natural ease with each other that creates the kind of intimacy only two best friends can share. They are both extraordinarily talented, but their comedic balance and chemistry with each other are essential to the film’s success. There is no Molly without Amy, and they both own their roles while complementing the other. There’s a core honesty in their performances, even in the wildest and raunchiest of scenes.

Every member of the ensemble is remarkable, but the stand-out is Billie Lourd. Many might still know Lourd only as the late Carrie Fisher’s daughter, despite her own success on shows like “Scream Queens” and “American Horror Story.” It’s in “Booksmart” that she truly comes into her own. As Gigi, the eccentric, ethereal girl who is just a tad too extra but has a very loving and generous heart, Lourd steals every scene she’s in, which is hard to do in a cast packed with talented actors.

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The story suggests”Can’t Hardly Wait” meets “American Pie” and, yes, “Superbad,” which launched the career of Feldstein’s older brother Jonah Hill,  But where those previous films were mainly about boys coming of age, with the plot around getting the girl or losing their virginity — and, let’s face it, some pretty misogynistic attitudes towards women and sex — “Booksmart” is just as raunchy and fun while also exploring the unique closeness and depth of a female friendship. Thanks in a large part to the all-woman writing team — which includes writer-producer Katie Silberman (“Isn’t It Romantic”), Emily Halpern (“Trophy Wife”), Sarah Haskins (“Celeste and Jesse Forever”) and Susanna Fogel (“The Spy Who Dumped Me”) — the script nails how two young women who have shared practically everything together talk, relate and even fight with each other.

That might not sound like a huge feat, but the movies have largely missed or misconstrued what a best friend means to a young girl. Throughout cinematic history, female friendships are largely facetious, concentrating on talking about only a handful of things — namely men, relationships and shopping (e.g., “Sex and the City”) — and when they do focus on issues facing young girls, like bullying and toxic concepts of beauty (e.g., “Mean Girls”), the defining emotional connection is left out. Wilde’s understanding of that connection and vulnerability, through her own experiences as an actress and as a woman, really shines through in her vision. There’s some uneven pacing in the middle of the film that perhaps needed a light edit, but it in no way hinders the narrative.

Teenage sexuality has also had a somewhat complicated history on the big screen. Women, particularly young women, are often subjected to the male gaze, and sex and sensuality are only viewed through a straight male lens. Now that we’re in an era with an increased awareness regarding consent versus coercion, we’re more aware of the problematic nature of some classic depictions of teenage sex lives. (For example, when dream boy Jake offers up his drunk soon-to-be-ex girlfriend to the geek to do whatever he wants to her in the John Hughes classic “Sixteen Candles.”)

Also Read: Jonah Hill’s Best Advice to Sister Beanie Feldstein on ‘Neighbors 2’: ‘No Joke Is Precious’

But that doesn’t mean films can’t address young lust, flirtation, or seduction, and Wilde doesn’t shy away from exploring these sensitive yet very normal teenage topics. My heart leapt when I heard Molly and Amy talking about how Amy might make a move on a girl she is crushing on, and Molly addresses masturbation without any shyness, proclaiming, “You just do what you do to yourself, and flip it.” Young women in the movies rarely get to discuss masturbation, much less demonstrate it, and if they ever do, it’s in hushed or shameful tones. In “Booksmart,” these two young women are allowed to be open, funny and completely comfortable discussing it.

The fact that the characters include a variety of ethnicities, and as well as LGTBQ+ and gender non-conforming teens –simply existing as adolescents without having their identities be their main character arc — is a beautiful thing to observe. Today’s high-schoolers seem far more advanced on matters of inclusion than older generations, which is why it was so important that although everyone in the film identifies differently, those identities are merely one aspect of their character rather than the sole driving point of their existence.

“Booksmart” has transformed the coming-of-age movie for a new generation, and Wilde immediately establishes herself not as the “next” John Hughes, Cameron Crowe or Judd Apatow but the first Olivia Wilde, the director who gave quick-witted, nerdy teenage girls their chance to shine.

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17 Buzziest Movies Heading to SXSW This Year, From ‘Us’ to ‘The Peanut Butter Falcon’ (Photos)

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SXSW Film Festival is known for its horror film debuts, and this year, Austin, Texas, will attract big talent and famed filmmakers. Click through the gallery to see TheWrap’s buzziest titles.
“Us”
It was announced in January that Jord…

Billie Lourd Honors Mom Carrie Fisher With Musical Tribute on Anniversary of Her Death (Video)

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It’s been two years since Carrie Fisher died, and her 26-year-old daughter, Billie Lourd, paid tribute to her mother by sharing a special musical performance in her honor.

The “American Horror Story” star posted a pair of videos to Instagram early on Thursday morning, showing her seated at a piano, playing her own rendition of Glen Campbell’s “These Days.”

She captioned the videos:

Also Read: ‘AHS Cult’: Here’s How Ryan Murphy Sold Billie Lourd on Playing a ‘Crazy Sociopath’ Babysitter (Exclusive Video)

“It has been two years since my Momby’s death and I still don’t know what the “right” thing to do on a death anniversary is (I’m sure a lot of you feel the same way about your loved ones). So I decided to do something a little vulnerable for me, but something we both loved to do together – sing. This is the piano her father gave her and this was one of her favorite songs. And as the song says, we must “keep on moving”. I’ve found that what keeps me moving is doing things that make me happy, working hard on the things that I’m passionate about and surrounding myself with people I love and making them smile. I hope this encourages anyone feeling a little low or lost to “keep on moving”. As my Momby once said, “take your broken heart and turn it into art” – whatever that art may be for you.”

Fisher died Dec. 27, 2016, at 60 after falling ill on a flight from London to Los Angeles a few days prior. A final autopsy report showed the “Star Wars” alum had a combination of drugs in her system at the time of her passing, but her official cause of death was ruled “sleep apnea and other undetermined factors.”

Also Read: Billie Lourd Responds to Mom Carrie Fisher’s Grammy Win: ‘I’m Beyond Proud’

Watch the videos in the post below.

View this post on Instagram

????????® ????????????It has been two years since my Momby’s death and I still don’t know what the “right” thing to do on a death anniversary is (I’m sure a lot of you feel the same way about your loved ones). So I decided to do something a little vulnerable for me, but something we both loved to do together – sing. This is the piano her father gave her and this was one of her favorite songs. And as the song says, we must “keep on moving”. I’ve found that what keeps me moving is doing things that make me happy, working hard on the things that I’m passionate about and surrounding myself with people I love and making them smile. I hope this encourages anyone feeling a little low or lost to “keep on moving”. As my Momby once said, “take your broken heart and turn it into art” – whatever that art may be for you.

A post shared by Billie Lourd (@praisethelourd) on

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6 Big Questions the ‘AHS: Apocalypse’ Finale Didn’t Answer

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(Warning: This post contains spoilers for the finale of “American Horror Story: Apocalypse.”)

We wondered last week how exactly Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk and the rest of the creative team on “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” could possibly finish up this whole thing in just one episode. And in Wednesday’s finale, we got our answer: not that well. The “AHS: Apocalypse” season finale speeds through the resolution to what was a pretty epic tale, leaving big plot threads dangling and not really paying off on so many points the show had set up early on.

So in order to work through our frustration with the finale, let’s take a look at the parts of the episode, and the season as a whole, that just don’t make sense now that it’s finally all over.

Also Read: The Ending of the ‘AHS: Apocalypse’ Finale Made Absolutely No Sense

1. What’s up with Emily and Timothy, the teenagers from Outpost 3?

It was always kind of a mystery why Emily (Ash Santos) and Timothy (Kyle Allen) were kidnapped and taken to the outpost when the nuclear apocalypse went down. They were told it was because of their DNA or whatever, but that always felt like a cover for something more nefarious, especially after it was discovered that it was Satanists who both caused the apocalypse and set up the outposts.

The end of the finale feels like it’s supposed to be an answer to that question of why they were chosen. After Mallory (Billie Lourd) successfully averts the apocalypse, the two meet by chance and then have a kid who ends up being a new Antichrist. So presumably, they were picked because Michael (Cody Fern) or somebody else knew about that potential.

But why? Michael Langdon was the Antichrist because he came to be under pretty specific circumstances — having been conceived through the union of a living woman and a dead man.

There’s no tangible evidence anywhere in “AHS: Apocalypse” that Emily and Timothy are special in a similar way. By all appearances they’re just regular people. And why would that potential matter in a world in which the Antichrist is already running around being evil? Seriously, nothing about this whole story really follows.

2. Why would Mallory need to go to the outpost to survive if the other witches survived without shelter?

Cordelia comments early in the finale that the safest place for Mallory is right under Michael’s nose while placed under an identity spell to suppress her magical abilities. Meanwhile, Cordelia (Sarah Paulson), Myrtle (Frances Conroy) and Madison (Emma Roberts) survive by, apparently, burying themselves alive and placing themselves in some kind of hibernation. It’s unclear why the outpost is a better option, because there’s no indication that Mallory would be able to break the spell on her own, should something happen to Cordelia.

Also Read: ‘AHS: Apocalypse’: Why Kathy Bates Refused to Pray to Satan While Playing a Satanist

The only possible explanation is that Cordelia knew that if she herself were to die in the apocalypse, that would allow Mallory to attain the full powers of the Supreme, which I guess could cause her to “wake up” from the identity spell and also allow her to pull off the time travel thing. That is, after all, how the whole thing ended up playing out anyway.

But if that was actually the plan, it seems as though Cordelia could have just killed herself before the apocalypse, granting Mallory the Supreme powers and doing the time travel thing earlier. There would have been no need for the apocalypse to ever happen, much less put Mallory in such a dangerous position.

3. Why did any of that crazy stuff that went down in Outpost 3 happen?

It’s easy to forget all that stuff, but narratively everything that happened in the first three episodes of “AHS: Apocalypse” was right before the big final battle. So you have Michael showing up talking about how outposts are being overrun and he needs to take some people to another safe place, then he does some tests to figure out who to take and the Rubber Man makes Mr. Gallant (Evan Peters) murder his grandma, Evie (Joan Collins) and some dead snakes come back to life and then Mead (Kathy Bates) and Venable (also Paulson) poison everybody.

None of those things are addressed in the finale. No explanation for why Michael was visiting the outpost. No info about who has been taking out the other outposts, or if Michael was lying about that. No mention of what Michael had been up to at all over the 18 months since the apocalypse happened. It’s as though the writers forgot about all that stuff just as quickly as many viewers did.

4. Who was the Rubber Man in the outpost?

I know I mentioned this above, but it bears repeating because it was such a huge thing at the time. The show demonstrated very clearly both that Michael was not the one wearing the suit, because he was present in his normal attire while the Rubber Man was having sex with Mr. Gallant. Maybe it was some kind of projection of Michael’s? The actual Rubber Man was his dad, after all, and in a flashback we saw that Michael dressed up as the Rubber Man as a teenager. But that’s just a guess because “AHS” declined to actually explain anything about it. Right now it just feels like a random reference.

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story’: Michael, Cordelia or Mallory? Adina Porter Picks a Side – Kinda (Video)

5. How even does the magic time travel spell work?

Last week, Mallory went back to 1918 Russia, clearly as some kind of projection since she faded out and returned to the present as her powers waned. But this time she went back in time, ran over teenaged Michael with a car… and then just stayed there in the past. These concepts do not line up at all, and there was so little explanation for what the tempes infinitum spell actually did that we can’t reconcile them.

6. Why did the plane that flew Coco and Mallory to the outpost not have a pilot?

At the end of the cold open for the very first episode of “AHS: Apocalypse” we saw Coco (Leslie Grossman), Mallory, Mr. Gallant and Evie get on a plane that took them to Outpost 3. And as the scene ended, just before the opening credits started, they go into the cockpit and see that the plane is flying itself. And no mention was ever made of this phenomenon after that scene. Was there a reason? There had to be, right? It was a shocking point they made sure to include in the premiere, so why do they never come back to it or decide it was worth clearing up?

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Billie Lourd’s “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” character Mallory appeared at first glance just to be the weary assistant of spoiled socialite Coco (Leslie Grossman). But as episodes went on and the story flashed back in time to th…

‘AHS: Apocalypse’ – Did We Already Meet Evan Peters’ and Billy Eichner’s New Characters Earlier This Season?

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(Spoilers ahead for “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” through the Oct. 31 episode)

On the latest episode of “American Horror Story: Apocalypse,” the show introduced us to a pair of robotics engineers who had sold their souls to Satan in exchange for career success — played by Billy Eichner and Evan Peters sporting hilarious bowl cuts. And we have a feeling we may have already met these characters back at the beginning of the season.

It’s tempting to think these are just a pair of new characters for Peters and Eichner — the second “Apocalypse” character for Eichner and fourth for Peters. Eichner showed up in the early part of the season as Coco’s (Leslie Grossman) boyfriend Brock, who gets left behind when the nuclear devastation happens, and Peters has played Coco’s hairdresser Mr. Gallant, as well as reprising his “Hotel” and “Murder House” characters.

Obviously, it’s not unusual for actors to play different characters in “AHS,” because it’s an anthology series and a lot of the same people come back for each season. And since “Apocalypse” is a crossover between two previous seasons, there’s been a lot of folks playing multiple roles within this season as they bring back old characters and introduce new ones.

Also Read: ‘AHS: Apocalypse’ – The Biggest Questions We Have After That Insane Eighth Episode

But something interesting within “Apocalypse” is that we now have three actors — Peters, Eichner and Joan Collins, who is both Evie Gallant and Bubbles McGee — who have played multiple characters that are original to this season. It’s not the first time something like that has happened in “AHS” history, but the way these characters have popped up is pretty unusual. And it leads us to believe that the each of those actors is actually only playing one new character, not two. That Peters’ Jeff the robotics engineer and Mr. Gallant are the same person. That Colins’ Evie and Bubbles are the same person. And that Eichner’s Mutt and Brock are the same person.

Contrast this situation with the myriad of folks Peters played in “Cult” last years — he played Kai, the main protagonist, as well as a bunch of historical figures that Kai hallucinated. So not people who exist in the present, real narrative. These new folks in “Apocalypse,” meanwhile, are active participants in the overall story of the season.

If you think back to the third episode, which feels like a lifetime ago, you’ll recall that when the witches from “Coven” came to Outpost 3 after the robot Ms. Mead poisoned everyone, they resurrected three characters and revealed that they were actually witches who had been placed under an identity spell, which at minimum made them forget they were witches. Two of those characters were Coco and Mallory (Billie Lourd), who had been acting, under the spell, as Coco’s assistant prior to the apocalypse.

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story’: Michael, Cordelia or Mallory? Adina Porter Picks a Side – Kinda (Video)

Given that Coco and Mallory were living at least semi-fake lives prior to the apocalypse, it follows that the people closest to them could also have been placed under an identity spell. Considering the spell was apparently part of Cordelia’s (Sarah Paulson) plan to fight Michael Langdon (Cody Fern), it would useful to place people around Coco and Mallory who wouldn’t blow their cover.

And so it would be a very “AHS” twist to have a fourth witch, Bubbles, as backup. And to have another character, like Mr. Gallant to make sure Bubbles ends up where she needs to be. Plus, using an identity spell on other characters could give Coco and Mallory pre-existing relationships in the wild to bolster their cover.

It’s not a perfect theory, however, as there are a few issues that I can’t explain. One very big one is that Venable and Mead, who were running Outpost 3, knew Jeff already because Venable worked at his robotics lab and he actually made Ms. Mead. It would be pretty convenient for them not to recognize him even with his dramatic makeover.

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Likewise, Coco and Mallory were using their real names under the identity spell, and Coco has maintained her relationship with her real family up until the moment they’re incinerated in a nuclear blast. And Coco, at least, seems pretty much like the same person before and after the spell. Brock and Mr. Gallant, by contrast, are completely different than Mutt and Jeff — but for the spell to really work that change would be necessary considering Jeff and Mutt are devoted servants of Satan.

The differences between Evie and Bubbles fall somewhere in between — both characters are actors, but Evie is losing her faculties to age while Bubbles is still super sharp.

So this theory is a bit out there, and has lots of holes — but, honestly, that’s not any different than just watching the show itself given how it’s structured for maximum surprise. Even with only two episodes left, there’s a ton we don’t know about what’s going on in “AHS: Apocalypse,” so it’s hard to imagine any major theory about what’s coming could be airtight at this point.

Either way, we’ll find out very soon.

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Why Jared Goff, Matt Damoan and Mallory From ‘AHS’ Are TV’s Social Media MVPs of the Week

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

TheWrap has partnered with Canvs, the emotion measurement AI company, for a weekly look at some of the characters and personalities that have TV viewers the most worked up on social media. The data below covers Sept. 26 through Oct. 2 and is drawn from the most emotionally reacted-to television programs, including broadcast, cable, streaming and PPV.

The L.A. Rams quarterback, a surprise “SNL” guest and an assistant with special powers had viewers talking passionately on social media over the past seven days.

NFL Network’s broadcast of the Minnesota Vikings vs. Los Angeles Rams game prompted 70,753 Emotional Reactions (ERs), with Rams quarterback Jared Goff driving a lot of the emotional conversation. Goff threw for five touchdowns and had no interceptions, helping lead his team to victory. Viewers applauded his throws in particular, showering him with praise and expressing love for the athlete and his team.

I know McVay is a genius but Goff has been brilliant this year. Has made some elite throws and is making the smart/correct reads

— Daniel Gomes (@RealDealGomes) September 28, 2018

What a Throw….
People saying Goff is a system QB need to watch this game. The system is great but the ball still needs be thrown.

— Joooooorge (@ValleJ25) September 28, 2018

That touch from Goff on the TD pass to Kupp was soooo good. He never had to adjust his speed, the ball was perfect.

— Devin Nylander (@DevinNylander) September 28, 2018

Nice pass there Goff. As soon as LB turned his head……..boom…..perfect timing.

— Bopp (@BamaBopp) September 28, 2018

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The 44th season premiere of “Saturday Night Live” on NBC sparked 48,770 ERs, with special guest Matt Damon driving much of the emotional conversation. Damon’s starring role in the cold open, in which he parodied Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s recent testimony in front of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, had people laughing up a storm and expressing love towards the actor — although some viewers took a different view, expressing disgust at how the show made light of the serious issue of sexual assault.

LMFAOOOOOOO. Matt Damon harvesting Brett Kavanaugh’s soul on #SNL tonight. pic.twitter.com/sfa1mdGFsz

— Vasu Kulkarni (@Vasu) September 30, 2018

Literally, this is probably Matt Damons greatest role & I couldn’t be happier with this opening. https://t.co/hEe1uteUCp

— M Fogerty Magpie (@fogertymagpie) September 30, 2018

I don’t know. I just don’t think rape and putting a rapist on the Supreme Court is funny. This is just normalizing all this crazy ass bullshit. #SNL @nbcsnl And Matt Damon as Kavanaugh, sounds about right since he’s Damon has his own white privileged nonsense

— HRCSuperVol1 (@hrcsupervol01) September 30, 2018

Great casting. I don’t think Matt Damon realized how apt he is for the part as the liberal mirror of white male entitlement. kudos snl https://t.co/1CmEMA3MdS

— D’s Dais (@ddaise) September 30, 2018

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An episode of “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” on FX generated 20,684 ERs, and a key driver of viewer emotion was the character Mallory (portrayed by Billie Lourd). Her actions during the interrogation with Langdon (including making flames dance and throwing him around with her mind) had many wondering if she’s actually a witch. Fans didn’t bother to conceal their shock, and then excitement, at the prospect.

7 minuets into AHS and Mallory has me SHOOK

— kaBOOsa (@killjoykarisa) September 27, 2018

Holy crap! Next time Mallory says ‘Let me go!’, you better listen! ????‍#AHSApocalypse

— Brian J Nethercott (@Lavidar666) September 27, 2018

HOLY CRAP MALLORY HAS POWERS ALSO WE JUST SAW THE FIRST LOOK AT MICHAEL AS FULL ANTI-CHRIST #AHSApocalypse

— oscar (@_ozzyoz) September 27, 2018

Mallory is a witch!! YAAASSSSS! #AHSApocalypse

— ♡ Ivana ♡ (@IvanaSymone) September 27, 2018

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We Have No Idea What’s Going On in ‘American Horror Story: Apocalypse’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Spoilers ahead for the premiere of “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” on FX)

It’s “American Horror Story,” so I guess we should have expected the first episode of “Apocalypse” to be weird and confusing, but this one feels particularly obtuse. That’s not a criticism — just a note about how extra-weird this season is shaping up to be.

Here’s what we know about the situation in “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” so far:

1. There was an actual nuclear apocalypse that went down to kick things off. This doesn’t appear to be some kind of con to trick people into locking themselves in the outposts. There were news reports, and we even saw one of the bombs go off in Los Angeles.

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story: Apocalypse’: Yes, Michael Langdon Is THAT ‘Murder House’ Character

2. A group called “The Cooperative” orchestrated a series of shelters to protect small groups of people from the nuclear fallout. We haven’t seen many people inside Outpost 3, where we spend most of the episode — just the two kids who were forcibly saved, the six rich people who bought their way in, the two women in charge, the tall enforcer woman and a couple of servants. Some of those rich folks got to the outpost using a plane that had no pilot. Hmm.

They don’t use any kind of technology in the outpost, and everybody has to wear old-timey clothes and they’re not allowed to have sex. What the point of that is, who knows?

3. The women in charge, Wilhemina Venable (Sarah Paulson) and Miriam Mead (Kathy Bates), seem to have some kind of plan that is not aligned with that of The Cooperative, though it’s tough to guess what that plan is just yet. But we do know it involved murdering one of the guests and cooking his corpse for dinner, and playing the same song over and over again for 18 months.

Also Read: Here’s How Many Episodes ‘American Horror Story: Apocalypse’ Will Have (Exclusive)

4. After 18 months in the outpost, there still appears to be plenty of fallout outside, but at the end of the episode they do finally seem to have some contact with the rest of The Cooperative when Michael Langdon (Cody Fern) pays Outpost 3 a visit. Langdon says he’s there to take those most worthy of survival to yet another secret, and more secure, outpost, as several other main outposts have been taken and overrun by means unknown.

5. In the last scene of the premiere, the horses Langdon rode in on were put down apparently due to damage they’d suffered from being outside — those cute gas masks they were wearing didn’t help all that much apparently. Then, in the final shot, something in the woods drags one of the horse corpses out of sight.

6. “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” is a continuation of both the “Murder House” and “Coven” seasons, but the only tie to those seasons that we’ve definitely seen so far is Langdon, who was born of the union between a real woman and a ghost man. Allegedly, Michael Langdon would grow up to be the Antichrist, but for now all we know is that it looks like he’s a middle manager of sorts within The Cooperative.

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story: Apocalypse’ Refresher: Here’s How ‘Coven’ and ‘Murder House’ Ended

We’re left after the premiere with about nine billion questions because everything about this story is just so weird and lacks any sort of clarifying detail. That’s definitely on purpose — “American Horror Story” is usually like that, and then the pieces come together later. But with “Apocalypse” we don’t even really get to settle in with a mundane beginning that features weird stuff happening around the periphery, because as soon as everybody gets to the outpost it goes straight into full-on wacky mode.

We’ve got a nuclear apocalypse, folks hiding out in a shelter looking like they walked straight out of like a Baz Lurhman period movie, a touch of cannibalism, some kind of monster or something in the woods and maybe the Antichrist. If you know know what to make of all that, you might be the only one.

Again, this is not a criticism. It’s just an observation.

But at least we know that now that “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” has finally kicked off, we won’t have to wait too terribly long before we start to get answers in the coming weeks.

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‘American Horror Story: Apocalypse’ Trailer: It’s The End Of The World As We Know It

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As the title of the new installment suggests, it’s the end …

Kevin Spacey’s ‘Billionaire Boys Club’ Bottoms Out With Measly $618 Box Office Debut

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Kevin Spacey’s “Billionaire Boy’s Club” grossed an abysmal $618 its opening weekend from 11 theaters in select states.

It’s by far the worst opening of Spacey’s career, which peaked in 2006 with the $52.5 million debut of “Superman Returns.” His new crime drama earned just $126 on opening day from eight locations, and grossed $287 from 10 screens in its first two days in theaters.

Filmed in 2015 and released with no publicity following a VOD release last month, “Billionaire Boys Club” was one of Spacey’s final projects before he was hit with more than two dozen sexual misconduct accusations last fall.

Also Read: Kevin Spacey’s ‘Billionaire Boys Club’ Bombs With $287 in First Two Days at Box Office

Actor Anthony Rapp was the first to come forward, others followed, including members of the crew of the Netflix show “House of Cards” and by anonymous accusers who called a hotline set up by London’s Old Vic Theatre, where Spacey was artistic director for 11 years. Spacey is now under investigation by Scotland Yard for six of those accusations.

As for “Billionaire Boys Club,” Vertical Entertainment said in a statement in June that it would move forward with the film’s release, noting that Spacey had only a supporting role. The film also stars Ansel Elgort, Taron Egerton, Billie Lourd and Emma Roberts.

As TheWrap exclusively reported, Vertical sent up “Boys Club” as an iTunes exclusive on July 14, with limited theatrical to follow on August 17. There were glimmers of hope, as the ensemble drama about prep school boys executing a ponzi scheme sat in the iTunes store top 30 for weeks, charts revealed, alongside titles like “The Greatest Showman” and “A Quiet Place.”

Also Read: Kevin Spacey’s ‘Billionaire Boys Club’ Dumped on Just 10 Screens – Probably Not at a Theater Near You

The film, directed by James Cox, tells the true story of a group of trust fund boys in ’80s Los Angeles who run a Ponzi scheme to make their own money and create a lavish lifestyle for themselves. But when a con artist named Ron Levin — played by Spacey — swindles them out of $4 million, the club soon turns to murder to get their money back.

The film has been panned by critics with a 11 percent Rotten Tomatoes score.

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‘American Horror Story’ Season 8: Here’s Who (Almost) Everyone Is Playing on ‘Apocalypse’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

The “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” cast wasn’t allowed to say much during the show’s panel at the Television Critics Association press tour Friday — other than telling TheWrap that Jessica Lange is coming back.

But they were given permission by creator Ryan Murphy to at least reveal the names of their characters for the upcoming eighth season. And that’s actually a lot of info, seeing as the next installment is the “Murder House”-“Coven” crossover, which means some of the returning actors have multiple roles they could play.

“Cult” star Leslie Grossman said she’s going to be taking on new character Coco St. Pierre Vanderbilt. Billie Lourd revealed she’s playing Mallory — “just Mallory.” Adina Porter (who made her “AHS” debut with “Cult,” for which she just received an Emmy nod) will be Dinah Stevens. Emma Roberts confirmed she’s coming back from the dead as her “Coven” character, Madison Montgomery. Kathy Bates is playing brand new persona Miss Meade (so no resurrection for her “Coven” alter ego).

Also Read: Jessica Lange Will Return for ‘American Horror Story’ Season 8

And longtime franchise star Sarah Paulson (also nominated for her role in “Cult”) says she is playing three characters this season: Venable, Supreme witch Cordelia Goode (“Coven”) and psychic Billie Dean (“Murder House”).

Paulson was the one who told TheWrap during the panel that Lange will be returning for Season 8.

“I do have the great pleasure of letting you all know that, yes, she will be back,” Paulson told TheWrap. “Jessica will be returning as Constance in an episode I’m going to direct.”

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story’ Renewed for Season 10 at FX

Fans were hoping against hope that the franchise alum would be coming back for the crossover (following her exit after Season 4 aka “Freak Show”), as she had prominent roles in both Season 1 and 3, playing the creepy next door neighbor Constance Langdon in “Murder House” and former Supreme witch Fiona Goode in “Coven.”

The season is already in production, which means the actors are either getting into character or back into character, with Roberts teasing what it’s been like to play Madison once more (who was most certainly dead, as of the end of “Coven,” in case you didn’t remember).

“I actually was told by the director yesterday to be bitchier, which I did not think was possible,” Roberts said.

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story: Apocalypse’ Casts Cody Fern as Michael Langdon

“AHS” has already been renewed for a 10th season, FX chief John Landgraf told TheWrap Friday during the network’s day at the Television Critics Association press tour. Yes, Season 10, because the Murphy series was previously renewed by FX for eight and nine at the same time.

The renewal comes as a bit of a surprise, amid Murphy’s upcoming move to Netflix in the wake of a giant $300 million overall deal with the streamer and his exit from the cable network’s sister studio 20th Century Fox.

“American Horror Story: Apocalypse” will star Paulson, Bates, Lourd, Roberts, Grossman, Porter, along with Evan Peters, Cody Fern, Cheyenne Jackson, Billy Eichner, and newcomer Joan Collins. And Lange, of course.

“American Horror Story: Apocalypse” will premiere Wednesday, Sept. 12 at 10/9c on FX.

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‘American Horror Story’ Season 8: Here’s the Official Title for ‘Murder House’-‘Coven’ Crossover

‘American Horror Story’ Season 8: Here’s the Official Title for ‘Murder House’-‘Coven’ Crossover

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Good news in Murphyland! You don’t have to keep calling “American Horror Story” Season 8 the Murder House”-“Coven” crossover, because we finally have an official title.

On Friday, Ryan Murphy’s hit FX anthology series released the name of its upcoming eighth installment — and some wild key art — via its social media accounts during San Diego Comic-Con 2018. And no, it isn’t that much-buzzed-about “Radioactive,” moniker.

The next season of the freak show is officially called “Apocalypse.” This shocking revelation came alongside the creepiest images associated with a season yet: a blood-red baby being toyed with by a scary, jet-black hand with some killer nails.

Also Read: Emma Roberts Pretty Much Confirms Madison Is Back for the Big ‘AHS’ Crossover (Video)

We’re all in agreement that the red and black is a perfect choice for a “Coven”/”Murder House” combo and that creepy latex-y baby is the “Murder” side of the coin and the spooky black hand is the witchy part, right?

Last month, Murphy took to Twitter to reveal the eagerly-anticipated crossover installment will arrive on FX this September. The news came as a shock to fans, as the series’ creator previously said the mashup was slated for Season 9.

“The Coven/Murder House AHS crossover season won’t be happening next year…because it’s happening THIS YEAR. AHS #8 WITCHES RULE THIS SEPTEMBER,” he said.

Also Read: Evan Peters Watches Himself Strangle ‘AHS’ Co-Star to Death: ‘Annnd Crack’ (Exclusive Video)

“American Horror Story: Apocalypse” will star Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, Kathy Bates, Billie Lourd, Emma Roberts, Billy Eichner, Leslie Grossman, Adina Porter, Cheyenne Jackson and newcomer Joan Collins.

See the title reveal/creepy key art below.

“American Horror Story: Season 8” will premiere Wednesday, Sept. 12 on FX.

”Also: ”‘American

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(Spoiler alert: Please do not read ahead unless you’ve seen all of “American Horror Story: Cult.”)

If you were shocked watching Kai (Evan Peters) strangle the life out of his sister Winter (Billie Lourd) toward the end of “American Horror Story: Cult,” so was he. Well, Peters was. In fact, TheWrap got to watch the “AHS” alum react to himself choking his co-star in a recent interview for our Emmy Rewind series.

Peters chose this particular scene to screen with us, as it was a hard one for him to act out — and harder to view. “She’s my sister, my family, and it’s sort of taken this turn because it’s been planted by Sarah [Paulson]’s character that she’s the mole,” he says in the video above. “And I’m so crazed and gone and this point and so obsessed with this goal I mean, I’m willing to kill my family.”

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story’ Season 8: Here’s Everything We Know Right Now

“Annnd, crack,” he added when we heard Lourd’s neck “snap” in the clip.

In the most recent installment of Ryan Murphy FX anthology series, Peters played a cult leader who slowly slips into madness while continuing to amass more followers. So mad, in fact, he, well, murders Lourd’s character.

“It’s rough watching [this] cause, like I said, it was the end of the season and just complete exhaustion and mental breakdown. I learned a lot from this season in that, I basically went too far — almost similar to what Kai is doing, which was just, you know he has this goal of world dominance.”

Also Read: Joan Collins in Final Talks to Star on ‘American Horror Story’ Season 8

“And I’m like, ‘Well, I really want to do a great job for this character and for this season, it was a current season,” he added. “And I really cared about it. I was really proud of this season and this role. So I wanted to do a great job. But I also was completely neglecting my family and friends and fiancee. And it was just really — in a way I felt like I was killing my own family. Not that way, obviously. But it was dark. It’s a crazy parallel to see it’s me actually losing it in a weird way.”

Watch the full interview above.

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Billie Lourd To Return To ‘American Horror Story’ For Season 8, Joins ‘Booksmart’ Movie

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EXCLUSIVE: Billie Lourd is set to return to American Horror Story for the upcoming eighth installment of Ryan Murphy’s FX anthology series. Additionally, Lourd has been cast opposite Kaitlyn Dever and Beanie Feldstein in the Annapurna/Gloria Sanc…

Billie Lourd Responds to Mom Carrie Fisher’s Grammy Win: ‘I’m Beyond Proud’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Carrie Fisher’s daughter, Billie Lourd, said in a touching Instagram post that she was “beyond proud” of her mother’s first Grammy award on Sunday, which Fisher won just over a year after her death.

Fisher won best spoken word album for the audiobook of her memoir “The Princess Diarist.” The win was widely celebrated on social media.

“Princess Diarist was the last profesh(ish) thing my momby and I got to do together,” Lourd said in her post. “I wish she was here to carry me down the red carpet in some bizarre floral ensemble but instead we’ll celebrate in true Carrie style: in bed in front of the TV over cold Coca Colas and warm e cigs. I’m beyond proud.”

Also Read: Here’s What Bruno Mars Sang That the Grammys Censored (Video)

The 2018 Grammy Awards marked the second time Fisher was nominated for a Grammy. She previously was nominated for the audiobook version of her memoir “Wishful Drinking,” which was published in 2008.

On Sunday, the “Star Wars” icon beat out Bruce Springsteen, songwriter Shelly Peiken, astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, actor Mark Ruffalo, and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders to win the award.

Read Billie Lourd’s whole post below:

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Billie Lourd Honors Mom Carrie Fisher on Anniversary of Her Death: ‘I Love You Times Infinity’

Read on: Variety.

Billie Lourd paid tribute to her late mother, Carrie Fisher, with a trip to see the Northern Lights. “My momby had an otherworldly obsession with the northern lights, but I never got to see them with her,” she posted on Instagram Wednesday, the one-year anniversary of Fisher’s death. “We journeyed to northern Norway to see […]

Carrie Fisher’s Dog Gary Recognized His Late ‘Mom’ in ‘The Last Jedi’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Carrie Fisher is gone, but not forgotten — especially by her beloved dog Gary.

Fisher’s longtime canine companion was taken to see a screening of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” and recognized his late “mother” when he saw her on screen as General Leia Organa, according to a tweet from Veronica Miracle, an ABC reporter.

Gary reportedly watched the recently released “Star Wars” film on Fisher’s former assistant’s lap. Miracle wrote that every time Leia appeared on screen, the pup’s ears perked up.

Also Read: Mark Hamill Recalls ‘Making Out Like Teenagers’ With Carrie Fisher

Yeah, go ahead and pretend that didn’t just shake you more than the first time you heard Darth Vader say, “No, I am your father.”

Gary previously posted a picture of him checking out a teaser for the film with the caption, “Just watched the new trailer of ‘The Last Jedi’ and my mom looks more beautiful than ever. #garymisseshismom#garyloveshismom #garyloveshisfans.”

If you’ve been following along with “The Last Jedi” news (or have already rushed out to see the latest chapter in the saga) you know that Gary is also in the movie. An alien creature inspired by Fisher’s dog appears in the film as a tribute to the late actress, who died on Dec. 27, 2016.

Also Read: Carrie Fisher’s Beloved Dog, Gary, Will Appear in ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ (Photo)

Gary now lives with his “sister,” Fisher’s daughter Billie Lourd.

Watch a video of Gary at the screening below.

The late @carrieffisher‘s dog Gary just watched #TheLastJedi! He sat on Fisher’s former assistant’s lap during the film. She said his ears perked up every time she was on screen @starwars @ABC7 pic.twitter.com/2rCCGIi6Al

— Veronica Miracle (@ABC7Veronica) December 15, 2017

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24 Actors You Probably Didn’t Know Were in ‘Star Wars’ Movies (Photos)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

The “Star Wars” films are full of secret cameos, soon-to-be-famous actors in small bit parts, and well-known faces behind alien masks and makeups. Here are 23 big names hidden throughout the franchise you might not have known about.

For more features and deep dives into the world of “Star Wars” and the culture surrounding it, be sure to check out IMDb’s “Star Wars” hub.

Daniel Craig (“The Force Awakens”)
It was something of a news item at the time, but James Bond slipped in a secret cameo in the first “Star Wars” film in a decade — as a stormtrooper. He’s the guard that Rei manages to Jedi mind trick into releasing her.

Bill Hader and Ben Schwartz (“The Force Awakens”)
You’d think the last thing a droid like BB-8 would require is a voice, given that he’s a robot and speaks in bleeps and bloops. But to get the sound and personality just right, director J.J. Abrams enlisted comedians Bill Hader (formerly of “SNL”) and Ben Schwartz (well-known for playing Jean-Ralphio on “Parks and Rec”).

Thomas Brodie-Sangster (“The Force Awakens”)
“Game of Thrones” might have noticed a familiar First Order officer during shots of the bridge of the Starkiller Base. It was Jojen Reed, Bran Stark’s loyal friend, who also plays Newt in the “Maze Runner” franchise..

Rose Byrne (“Attack of the Clones”)
Before she was a mainstay of the “Insidious” movies alongside Patrick Wilson or had joined the “X-Men” franchise as CIA Agent Moira MacTaggert, Rose Byrne was one of the handmaidens serving Queen Amidala (Natalie Portman) in the “Star Wars” prequels. Specifically, she was Dormé, who accompanied Padmé to Coruscant to do government things.

Keira Knightley (“The Phantom Menace”)
Knightley wasn’t just any handmaiden in “The Phantom Menace” — she was the handmaiden. Serving as the decoy for the real queen, Knightley was the actress people thought was Amidala for half the movie, before Natalie Portman’s Padmé revealed her true identity.

Sofia Coppola (“The Phantom Menace”)
There really were a mess of these handmaidens. Before she was a full-time director, Sofia Coppola picked up a few small acting gigs, including the handmaiden Saché in “The Phantom Menace.” Just a few years after the 1999 movie, in 2003, Coppola would pick up a Best Director Academy Award nomination for “Lost in Translation.”

Joel Edgerton (“Attack of the Clones,” “Revenge of the Sith”)
Luke’s moisture-farming, humorless uncle Owen Lars was young once, but he was never not a guy who stood around a crappy homestead on Tatooine. In the prequel movies, the role was picked up by Joel Edgerton of “Loving” and “The Great Gatsby.”

Billie Lourd (“The Force Awakens”)
Billie Lourd sneaked into Lucasfilm’s revival of “Star Wars” as Lt. Connix, one of the Resistance fighters running tactical machinery in the base of General Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher). Known for her hilarious turn as Chanel No. 3 on the horror-comedy series “Scream Queens,” she’s also Fisher’s daughter.

John Ratzenberger (“The Empire Strikes Back”)
Ratzenberger is best remembered as know-it-all postman Cliff Clavin from “Cheers,” or maybe his numerous voice roles in Pixar movies. In “The Empire Strikes Back,” Ratzenberger is one of the Rebel officers hanging around Echo Base on Hoth with Princess Leia and C-3PO (Anthony Daniels).

Tony Cox (“Return of the Jedi”)
In an Ewok suit, you’d never know Tony Cox appeared in “Return of the Jedi.” He wouldn’t really show off his acting chops until comedies like “Bad Santa,” where he was Billy Bob Thornton’s much-smarter mall-robbing accomplice and Christmas elf, and “Me, Myself and Irene.”

Dominic West (“The Phantom Menace”)
The prequel trilogy was filled with actors who would go on to do great things, but who were mostly filling small or background roles in the “Star Wars” universe. Dominic West‘s character in “The Phantom Menace” was an otherwise nondescript member of Queen Amidala’s palace guard — nothing so interesting as his later turn as Jimmy McNulty on HBO’s “The Wire.”

Julian Glover (“The Empire Strikes Back”)
Julian Glover‘s General Veers is probably the most competent officer available to Darth Vader as wanders the galaxy looking for the Rebels and Luke Skywalker. He’d be decidedly less competent as Grand Maester Pycelle on “Game of Thrones,” but decidedly more evil as Nazi collaborator Walter Donovan in “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.”

Richard Armitage (“The Phantom Menace”)
Blink and you’d miss Richard Armitage‘s small background role among the guards on Naboo. Although, it’s tough to recognize him without the lustrous locks Armitage sported in “The Hobbit” as Thorin Oakenshield, or the creepy teeth from his turn as killer Francis Dolarhyde in “Hannibal” Season 3 on NBC.

Deep Roy (“Return of the Jedi”)
It’s easiest to remember Deep Roy in the Johnny Depp-starring “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” since Roy played every orange oompa-loompa in that movie. In “Return of the Jedi,” he was both an Ewok and the puffy alien band member Droopy McCool in Jabba’s Palace. Deep Roy also worked on “The Empire Strikes Back,” acting as a stand-in for the muppet Yoda.

Simon Pegg (“The Force Awakens”)
Another secret cameo, Simon Pegg is covered in alien costume work as the junk dealer Unkar Plutt on Jakku. He’s the guy who gives Rei less than what her salvage is probably worth.

Bai Ling (“Revenge of the Sith”)
Bai Ling actually doesn’t appear in “Revenge of the Sith,” but she was supposed to. Her scene as Senator Bana Breemu was cut from the film. But there are things you definitely have seen her in, including “Crank: High Voltage,” “The Crow” and “Entourage.”

Peter Serafinowicz (“The Phantom Menace”)
Marvel Cinematic Universe fans will recognize Peter Seafinowicz for his turn as untrusting Nova Corps officer Garthan Saal in “Guardians of the Galaxy.” He didn’t appear in “The Phantom Menace,” but provided the gravely, frightening voice of Darth Maul (the rest of whom was played by Ray Park), as well as for a gungan warrior and a battle droid.

Harriet Walter (“The Force Awakens”)
Playing a Resistance medic who helps out Chewbacca, “Downton Abbey” alumna Harriet Walter gets a short but sweet cameo in “The Force Awakens.” She actually has one of the movie’s funnier moments as she talks to Chewie about how scary his ordeal must have been.

Treat Williams (“The Empire Strikes Back”)
When you’re Treat Williams, you can wander onto the set of “The Empire Strikes Back” and find yourself in the movie. Williams reportedly dropped by England’s Elstree Studios set, where the movie was being filmed, to visit Carrie Fisher. Apparently one thing led to another, and now Williams plays one of the Rebel troops running around Echo Base on Hoth.

Sally Hawkins (“The Phantom Menace”)
Before she was an Academy Award-nominated actress for her role in “Blue Jasmine,” Sally Hawkins was an extra in the giant celebration scene in “The Phantom Menace.” She admitted in an interview with Conan O’Brien that she’d never actually seen the movie, despite being in it.

Martin Csokas (“Attack of the Clones”)
The “Star Wars” movies have slipped a few notable actors into the voice roles of aliens. Martin Csokas is one — he provided the voice of the Geonosian alien Poggle the Lesser in “Attack of the Clones.” Fantasy fans probably know him better as the elf Celeborn, husband to Cate Blanchett’s Galadriel in “The Lord of the Rings.”

Keisha Castle-Hughes (“Revenge of the Sith”)
Sometime after Padmé’s term as queen had ended by “Revenge of the Sith,” the wise people of Naboo apparently elected another teenager queen: Queen Apailana, played by Keisha Castle-Hughes. Apailana is seen at Padmé’s funeral, and Castle-Hughes is known for “The Whale Rider” and appearing on “The Walking Dead.”

For more features and deep dives into the world of “Star Wars” and the culture surrounding it, be sure to check out IMDb’s “Star Wars” hub.

‘American Horror Story: Cult’ – Here’s What That Ending Means

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Note: This post contains spoilers for the “American Horror Story: Cult” finale.)

“American Horror Story: Cult” has been one of the twistier seasons of the show, and it saves one of the biggest bombshells for last.

The final episode of the show sees the conflict between cult leader Kai Anderson (Evan Peters) and Ally Mayfair-Richards (Sarah Paulson) come to a head. After turning Kai in to the FBI, Ally decided to make a Senate bid by leveraging her celebrity for surviving the cult. But an enraged Kai managed to escape prison to threaten Ally live at a senatorial debate.

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story: Cult’: Yep, Charles Manson Is Still Alive

As it turns out, Ally was springing a trap on Kai. She’d convinced Kai’s guard at the prison to help him escape, but leave him vulnerable. Then, on live TV, Ally showed her strength by mocking Kai, before Beverly (Adina Porter) got her revenge and killed him. The move solidified Ally’s Senate win.

The final moments of the episode close on Ally looking in a mirror as she pulls a black hood over her head. It’s a reference to what “American Horror Story: Cult” revealed in Episode 7 — Ally is a member of SCUM, the Society for Cutting Up Men. The cult, started by Valerie Solanas in the 1960s, was actually responsible for the Zodiac killings in San Francisco.

The reveal recontextualizes a huge amount of what we’ve seen in “American Horror Story: Cult” so far. We found out in Episode 10, “Charles (Manson) in Charge,” that Bebe Babbitt (Frances Conroy), one of Valerie’s cult members, was actually responsible for starting Kai on the path to starting his cult. She served as his therapist, and convinced him to use his charisma to gather a group of people, working toward eventually igniting the fury of women around the world to rise up against men.

Also Read: ‘American Horror Story: Cult’: Those Cults Kai Talked About Are Real

As part of Bebe’s plan, Kai turned against the women in his cult, ostracizing them and getting them to fight back. Bebe met up with Beverly, Ivy (Alison Pill) and Winter (Billie Lourd) and told them all about SCUM, trying to get them to turn on Kai. But instead of following through on what Bebe wanted, Kai turned against Bebe and the other women, raising a small army of men to help him take over the country.

Meanwhile, Ally, who was committed to a mental hospital in the aftermath of the shooting at Kai’s rally, was recruited by the FBI to spy on Kai’s cult. She got in with Kai by claiming he was her son’s father. When Bebe showed up to kill Kai after he betrayed her, it was Ally who shot Bebe and saved his life.

The reveal at the end of the show suggests that at some point, Ally joined up with Bebe’s cause. It’s possible that after Ally and Beverly escaped Kai’s cult, Beverly brought her into the SCUM fold. But given that Bebe tried to execute an elaborate plan using Kai’s cult and the women already in it to take SCUM nationwide, it seems more likely that the intended read of “American Horror Story: Cult” that Ally was part of Bebe’s plot from much earlier. Maybe most or all of what we’ve seen of Ally dealing with Kai’s cult has been Bebe’s plan all along, to catapult a woman to the national stage who could destroy the two-party electoral system and, finally, lead a revolt against men.

Also Read: Every ‘American Horror Story: Cult’ Character, Ranked by How Likely It Is That They’re a Murderous Clown (Photos)

Some elements of the ending of “American Horror Story: Cult” is open to interpretation, but it’s clear that Ally is now a U.S. Senator — and she’s ready to lead a cult of her own.

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