‘Shazam!’ Reaction: Zachary Levi’s Superhero Stint Is a Jolly Good Time (Video)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

[Spoiler alert: Do not read on or watch the video above if you are worried about “Shazam!” spoilers or teasers.]

Guys, DC has done it. We have an entertaining, lighthearted superhero movie that awakens the child in all of us, but also, at times, can give us a big fright.

David F. Sandberg directs Zachary Levi and Asher Angel in this superhero iteration that follows a kid who can transform into a muscular, good-looking superhero by simply saying “Shazam!”

Watch the video above.

Also Read: Why Warner Bros.’ Big Change Won’t Disrupt the DC Universe

Warner Bros./New Line’s “Shazam!” got its first round of opening weekend estimates, with independent trackers setting it at a $40 million launch.

Although that would be a drop from the $72.5 million launch “Aquaman” had in December en route to a $334 million domestic/$1.14 billion global gross, there’s still plenty of reason for optimism for this lighter, sillier DC film.

For starters, it was made on a smaller budget. While “Aquaman” was reported to have a budget well north of $150 million, individuals with knowledge of the production tell TheWrap that the budget for “Shazam!” was closer to $100 million, similar to what Sony spent on its 2018 comic book hit “Venom.”

Along with the lower price tag, “Shazam!” has enjoyed positive social media buzz since its first trailer debuted at San Diego Comic-Con last year. Telling the story of a teenage boy who gains the ability to transform into an adult superhero, “Shazam!” has won over fans with marketing that has promised a more humorous and lower-stakes movie than many of DC’s recent films.

Also Read: Why Warner Bros.’ Big Change Won’t Disrupt the DC Universe

“Shazam!” follows foster child Billy Batson (Angel), who is chosen as “Champion of Eternity” by an ancient wizard (Djimon Hounsou) and granted the ability to transform into the superhero Shazam (Levi). With the help of his foster brother and superhero fanatic Freddy (Jack Dylan Grazer), Billy learns to master his powers and takes them out for a joyride, But when his newfound abilities attract the interest of the twisted industrialist Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Mark Strong), Billy is forced to get serious.

“Shazam!” is directed by Sandberg from a script by Henry Gayden, with Peter Safran producing. It hits theaters April 5.

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‘Shazam!’ Film Review: DC Comics Gets a Bouncy Burst of Big-Screen Ebullience

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

If the “Wonder Woman” and “Aquaman” movies represented DC Comics’ first big-screen steps away from the austere color palette of the Zach Snyder movies, “Shazam!” takes us deeply into primary colors in a single bound. There’s still a touch of urban decay and kitchen-table warmth on display — this is by no means Warren Beatty’s “Dick Tracy” or a candy-colored Cartoon Network production — but this new DC entry has a lovely lightness, both in the visuals and in its tone.

Before the 1940s serials and the 1970s Saturday-morning TV show, “Shazam!” was born in a magazine called Whiz Comics, published by Fawcett and later acquired by the company that would be known as DC Comics. (Of course, the character used to be called Captain Marvel, but that’s a long story.) And to use a 1940s expression, there’s a gee-whiz ebullience to the movie that makes it stand out among the last several decades’ worth of caped crusaders.

Young Billy Batson (Asher Angel, “Andi Mack”) has spent most of his childhood escaping foster homes in the hopes of finding his mother (Caroline Palmer); as a 4-year-old, Billy got lost at a carnival and never found her again, although he’s sure she’s still looking for him. So when a new set of foster parents take him in, he’s got one eye on the door, even though everyone seems really nice, particularly Freddy (Jack Dylan Grazer, “It”), a Superman fan who’s never without a quip or the crutch that helps him walk. (“You look at me and you think, ‘Why so dark? Disabled foster kid, you got it all.’”)

Watch Video: ‘Shazam!’ Trailer: Zachary Levi Leaps Tall Buildings in a Single Bound – Almost

Everything changes when the wizard Shazam (Djimon Hounsou) summons Billy and gives him the power to transform into a superhero who will protect Earth against the Seven Deadly Sins. When Billy says, “Shazam!” he is transformed by a bolt of lightning, magically imbued with the wisdom of Solomon, the strength of Hercules, the stamina of Atlas, the power of Zeus, the courage of Achilles and the speed of Mercury. And while Billy and Freddy try to figure out how these powers work — even when he changes from little kid into strapping Zachary Levi, the new Shazam is still immature Billy inside, wisdom of Solomon or no — Shazam’s appearance stokes the fury of Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Mark Strong).

Sivana, as a young boy, was himself summoned by Shazam to the Rock of Eternity before the wizard rejected him as unworthy, leading Sivana to spend his life trying to return. Over the years, Sivana realizes that Shazam turned away hundreds of candidates, only finally selecting Billy out of desperation. But since Sivana is greedy and venal, and burdened with daddy issues of his own, he’s easy pickings for those Seven Deadly Sins, who possess him and force him to do their bidding.

Confronted by Sivana, who wants the Shazam powers for himself, Billy/Shazam’s first instinct is to hide and run away. But when Sivana comes after his new foster family, will Billy figure out how to be a hero and also how to depend on others for love and support? The answer to these questions won’t shock you, but “Shazam!” does offer some surprises along the way. Critics on Twitter have compared this movie to both “Shoplifters” and “Meet the Robinsons,” and they aren’t wrong. The way that Billy resolves his own issues regarding family as well as the larger crisis of the end of the world makes sense in the context of the script (by Henry Gayden, “Earth to Echo,” from a story by Gayden and Darren Lemke, “Goosebumps”) while also honoring the original comics by Bill Parker and C.C. Beck, who very quickly gave Billy a cadre of co-heroes known as the Marvel Family.

Also Read: ‘Shazam’ Set for $40 Million Opening in First Round of Box Office Tracking

Fans of those comics might not recognize this Sivana, much taller and more handsome than the creepy mad scientist of the original, and even though “Shazam!” doesn’t give us any talking tigers, there are some hints that one of the series’ most ridiculous yet most beloved villains will be popping up in future installments. (As always for movies like this, it’s a good idea to stay through the credits.) What’s most important is that the movie does capture the original comics’ combination of breezy heroism and nutty plotting, transferred from the 1940s to the modern era with great skill.

An old hand at horror, director David F. Sandberg (“Annabelle: Creation,” “Lights Out”) does throw in a few scenes that are too dark for the otherwise amiable tone of “Shazam!” And when we finally see the Seven Deadly Sins, they look like the kind of bargain-basement CG creatures that you get when a game on your phone shows you an ad for a different game that you would never want to play. But neither of these problems inflicts much damage. The cast is consistently sharp, with Grazer in particular managing great chemistry with both versions of Billy. Levi’s body language is constantly inventive, as he plays a tween who still isn’t used to a grown man’s body, let alone a superhero’s. (And yes, Gayden even throws in a gag to acknowledge the fact that we’re all thinking about “Big.”)

Also Read: Why Warner Bros.’ Big Change Won’t Disrupt the DC Universe

It’s worth highlighting Leah Butler’s costume design; her Shazam costume is great — on paper, the character had one of the weirdest capes in all the comics, but she’s managed to turn it into something more along the lines of a hoodie — while the family of foster kids all wear outfits that convey distinct personalities but still look appropriately like they’ve been curated with love and care at a Goodwill.

One of the delights of DC Comics over the years is that the unlikeliest characters can bump up against each other; you can stick Batman on the same page with The Phantom Stranger, Amethyst of Gemworld, the Doom Patrol and Rip Hunter, Time Master, and somehow they all fit. As the company’s films move in the same direction, it will be interesting to see how well “Shazam!” will play with his super-peers.

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Alfonso Cuarón, Kenya Barris, Tina Fey and 750 More Sign Letter Backing WGA in Battle Against Agencies

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

More than 750 screenwriters and showrunners, including Alfonso Cuarón, Kenya Barris, Tina Fey and Adam McKay, have signed a letter supporting the Writers Guild of America in its battle against and the Association of Talent Agents over packaging fees and conflicts of interest.

“We are voting YES to support Guild implementation of an Agency Code of Conduct after the current AMBA expires on April 6th, if there is no negotiated settlement,” read the letter. “We agree a new agency agreement should 1) Confront practices that constitute a conflict of interest: agency packaging fees and agencies functioning as producers and 2) Require the agencies to work with the Guild to protect writers’ interests by providing writer contracts, invoices and other information.”

Fede Alvarez, Ike Barinholtz, Amy Berg, Greg Berlanti, Kay Cannon, Peter Farrelly, Simon Kinberg, Mindy Kaling, Barry Jenkins, Patton Oswalt, Amy Poehler, Issa Rae and Colin Trevorrow, among many more, signed the letter as well.

Also Read: ATA Sticks With Packaging Fees in Latest Counterproposal to Writers Guild

Over the past week, the WGA and one of the top agencies in Hollywood, United Talent Agency, have published dueling reports on the impact that packaging fees have had on how much writers get paid. UTA argues that by including writers in packaging deals instead of taking a 10 percent commission, they have been able to save their writer clients an average of $2,439.

But in its own report published Thursday, the WGA argued that TV writers with producer credits have not seen their pay increase in relation to inflation rates over the past 20 years.

For example, the WGA report notes that a supervising producer on a one-hour drama in the 1990s made an average $17,500 per episode, “That would be $27,300 in today’s dollars,” the report said. “But again, 17 years later, supervising producers at the median were making only $17,500 per episode.”

The WGA also said that while its members’ total earnings hit an all-time high of $1.4 billion in 2017, median wages are dropping. That is something the guild blames agencies for, claiming that agents “have not kept up their end of the bargain by fighting for increases in their clients’ over-scale payments.”

Also Read: Writers Guild Casts Doubt on UTA Report in Packaging Fee Dispute: ‘A False Premise’

ATA’s counterproposal, posted to its official site Thursday, doesn’t differ much from the informal counterproposal made public on March 12. Talent agencies aren’t backing down on their commitment to package deals. However, the latest document explains in greater detail how agencies would provide transparency and greater consent for writers when it comes to packaging.

Packaging fees, the guild argues, have allowed agencies to capitalize on the demand for more TV programming by increasing the fees they receive for packaging deals for shows that can run for years, rather than operate on a commission system that directly ties how much agents earn to how much money they secure for their writers.

The WGA has scheduled a four-day membership vote that will begin on March 27 to authorize the guild to enforce a new Code of Conduct requiring agencies to remove all package fees from their deals in order to represent writers. If the vote is approved, the Code will be enforced on April 7, with the WGA calling on its members to leave any agency that refuses to comply.

Related stories from TheWrap:

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Adele Plays Musical Shots at NYC Gay Bar, Jennifer Lawrence Tackles Her When She Loses (Video)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Adele and Jennifer Lawrence really lived it up on Friday night as they hit up New York City gay bar Pieces, where the “Hello” singer played a round of musical shots… and was promptly tackled by her bestie when she lost.

According to Entertainment Weekly, the duo went to the Greenwich Village bar during a drag show hosted by Brita Filter. Adele took part in musical shots (which, yes, is musical chairs but with shots), singing to Kylie Minogue’s “Can’t Get You Out of My Head.” When the music stopped, she didn’t get a glass, so JLaw pushed her to the ground and said, “How could you lose?!”

Someone in the crowd then told her, “Jennifer, this isn’t ‘The Hunger Games’!”

See Video: Jennifer Lawrence Taught Her ‘Hunger Games’ Co-Star Amandla Stenberg How to Pee in the Woods

Other videos have started circulating on Twitter and Instagram from their big night out. In one video, the Grammy winner is on stage with Brita Filter, telling the crowd, “Hi, I’m Adele!” and that she’s currently a stay-at-home mom.

Lawrence and Adele have been best buds for a while — in 2015, they had a big outing with pal Emma Stone in New York, as well.

Also Read: Anna Delvey Wants Jennifer Lawrence or Margot Robbie to Play Her in the Inevitable Movie

See below for videos from the BFF’s Friday night shenanigans (be sure to click right, as it’s a carousel).

Jennifer Lawrence literally got Adele down to the floor for losing at a musical shot game ???? pic.twitter.com/TuhLQbdurF

— adi ???? (@adeleoutdid) March 23, 2019

And @Adele is on stage at Pieces tonight. Oh boy, this is fun pic.twitter.com/e7fesvNIEI

— Papacito Bach (@papacitobach) March 23, 2019

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Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’ on Pace for $67 Million Opening, Double ‘Get Out’ Debut

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Universal/Monkeypaw’s “Us” is blowing by all analysts’ expectations. On the back of strong pre-release buzz and an opening day total of $29 million, Jordan Peele’s second film is estimated to gross $67 million from 3,741 screens this weekend.

If that estimate holds, not only will “Us” have doubled the opening weekend of Peele’s debut film “Get Out” ($33.3 million), it will set a new opening weekend record for original horror films, beating the $50.2 million of last year’s “A Quiet Place.” It’s also a record for any original film released in March.

Also Read: The Strange Story Behind ‘I Got 5 on It,’ the Secret Weapon of Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’

The one somewhat bad note for “Us” is that while critics have been raving about the film with a Rotten Tomatoes score of 95 percent, audiences aren’t quite as enthused as they were for “Get Out.” While that film earned an A on CinemaScore, “Us,” with its more opaque theming and twist ending, has received a B from opening night audiences, which is typical for what horror films tend to receive from the audience poll.

Postrak demographic data shows that Friday night’s audience was 31 percent African-American, compared to 34 percent Caucasians, 22 percent Hispanic/Latino, and 13 percent Asian/Other.

Also Read: Here’s All the Horror Movie References We Found in ‘Us’ So Far (Photos)

“Captain Marvel” will settle for the No. 2 spot in its third weekend, though it is still continuing its torrid pace, as it will pass the $315 million domestic total for “Thor: Ragnarok” by Sunday’s end. The Marvel movie is set to make $34.6 million in its third weekend, bringing its domestic total to $321 million and, depending on overseas results, possibly push its global total past the $1 billion mark.

CBS Films/Lionsgate’s “Five Feet Apart” takes third place with an estimated $8.6 million, dropping 34 percent from its $13.1 million opening. Paramount’s “Wonder Park” is fourth, dropping 50 percent for a $7.8 million opening. “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World” completes the top five with $6.7 million in its fifth weekend.

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Barbra Streisand on Michael Jackson’s Accusers: ‘It Didn’t Kill Them’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Barbra Streisand said in an interview that while she believes the two men who accused Michael Jackson of sexual abuse in the documentary “Leaving Neverland,” she also has some sympathy for Jackson.

In a wide-ranging Times of London interview published Friday, Streisand said of Jackson: “His sexual needs were his sexual needs, coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has.” She also said that on the few occasions they met, Jackson, who died at age 50 in 2009, was “very sweet, very childlike.”

Streisand told The Times that she “absolutely” believes the accounts of Wade Robson and James Safechuck, and said that watching “Leaving Neverland” was “too painful.”

But she added: “You can say ‘molested’, but those children, as you heard [the grown-up Robson and Safechuck] say, they were thrilled to be there. They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them.”

Also Read: Michael Jackson’s Molestation Trial: 10 Bizarre Details You Didn’t Know or Totally Forgot

Streisand also told the Times that she has “combination of feelings” about the accusations. “I feel bad for the children. I feel bad for him, ” she said. “I blame, I guess, the parents, who would allow their children to sleep with him? Why would Michael need these little children dressed like him and in the shoes and the dancing and the hats?”

In the documentary, Robson and Safechuck said Jackson spent years grooming both them and their families, gaining their trust so he could betray it.

Jackson’s estate has denied the accusations. Jackson also denied child molestation accusations for years, and was acquitted in a child molestation case in 2005.

Representatives for Streisand did not immediately respond to a request for comment from TheWrap.

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Jim Carrey Takes on Attorney General Barr in Post-Mueller Report Political Cartoon

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on possible Russian interference in the 2016 election is in — and so is Jim Carrey’s latest artistic assessment of the political landscape.

Shortly after Mueller submitted his report to attorney general William P. Barr, actor/artist Carrey unveiled his latest work, and it’s clear that he’s waiting to see what Barr will, or won’t, do with the report.

Carrey offered his rendering of Barr with the message, “The Mueller report is out! The question now is…how low will this Barr go?”

Also Read: Jim Carrey Digs Into ‘Crypt Keeper’ Kellyanne Conway’s Marriage in Latest Political Cartoon

Carrey wasn’t the only show business denizen to weigh in after Mueller submitted his report.

“Star Trek” alum and frequent Trump critic George Takei also offered his thoughts on Friday, tweeting, “No matter what Mueller’s report contains, we already know three things: Trump surrounded himself with felons, he obstructed justice on behalf of those felons, and he faces multiple federal and state investigations for other criminal activity … The wheel of justice has many spokes.”

See the latest product of Carrey’s artistic wheel-turning below.

The Mueller report is out! The question now is…how low will this Barr go? pic.twitter.com/IveGZzlcRo

– Jim Carrey (@JimCarrey) March 22, 2019

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Meet the Twins Who Cheated at the Olympics (Podcast)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

In 1984, twins Madeline and Margaret de Jesus pulled off one of the biggest (and funniest) cheats in the history of the Olympics. The whole story is on our latest “Shoot This Now” podcast, which you should check out on Apple or right here:

1984 was peak Los Angeles: Randy Newman had just released “I Love L.A.” Bret Easton Ellis was putting the finishing touches on “Less Than Zero.” Pasadena’s Van Halen released an album called “1984.” Glam rock was taking hold on the Sunset Strip. And the eyes of the world was on the city of freeways thanks to the Summer Games.

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Brooklyn-born track star Madeline de Jesus came to the City of Angels with dreams of winning Olympic gold for Puerto Rico. But something went wrong: She was injured in the long jump, and found herself unable to run in the 4×400-meter relay.

Fortunately, she had a secret weapon: Her identical twin sister, Margaret, who was also an excellent athlete. Do you see where this is going?

On every episode of “Shoot This Now,” Deirdre McCarrick and I talk about true stories we think should be made into TV shows and movies. Then we talk about who we’d love to see in the main roles, and who should direct. We also offer up some Hollywood pitch-meeting-style comps. This one is “Chariots of Fire” meets “Catch Me If You Can.”

The college admissions scandal and Jordan Peele’s “Us” have us thinking about cheating and duality, respectively. Madeline and Margaret de Jesus’ story has both.

Join us for this, our very special 50th episode. We talk about Madeline and Margaret de Jesus and their duplicitous (but very funny) ruse, but also about Lori Loughlin, Jordan Peele, Liam Neeson, and dystopian boy band Menudo.

If you enjoy this episode, check out one of our sources, Yara Simon’s story about the de Jesus twins for Remezcla.

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Fox Employees ‘Walking on Eggshells’ as Heavy Layoffs Continue Under Disney

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

When Disney executives visit the Fox lot in Century City, the home of their newly acquired TV and film studios, they’re greeted by a big new banner that says “Welcome to Fox” and doors newly painted with the word “FOX.”

It’s not so much a welcome as a way of marking territory, one Fox insider told TheWrap Friday, three days after Disney closed its $71.3 billion acquisition of 21st Century Fox’s film and TV assets — and two days after it started layoffs that are expected to cost as many as 4,000 Fox employees their jobs.

The insider said the banner and “FOX” logos, which went up Thursday, were a way of reminding Disney that under the new deal, it is renting the Century City property from Fox: “This is still our lot.”

Also Read: Dana Walden Pumps Up New Disney Staff in Memo: ‘Overwhelmed By the Excitement’ for Future

The person said a “surreal” day of layoffs Thursday began with the unfamiliar sight of two black Teslas parked in front of Fox film’s Building 88 in spots that are not normally reserved.

To some Fox employees, they were harbingers of a dark day to come.

Among those let go were Fox head of distribution Chris Aronson and president of international distribution Andrew Cripps. The marketing team at the studio was also gutted and the Fox 2000 label, run by Elizabeth Gabler, will shut down after its films that are currently in production are done.

Now, those who still work beyond that big banner are in “wait and see” mode, one employee said.

“When you reached out to me this morning nothing had changed and about an hour ago everything changed,” a Fox film executive told TheWrap on Thursday.

The executive remembered scrambling to inform employees of the coming bad news via video conference, only to have a news story break it first.

“I give [Disney] credit for having our guys in HR make the call, rather than getting that call from some stranger, but that’s about all I give them credit for,” the executive said.

Also Read: Disney-Fox Layoffs Continue: 20th Century Fox TV Distribution Chief Mark Kaner Out

Though the layoffs on Thursday were particularly heavy on the film side, another Fox employee told TheWrap on Friday that many of these departures were expected and unavoidable, though the impending end of Fox 2000 seems “particularly unfair.”

“That really hurts,” the employee said.

People on the TV side feel “very much in the dark” about what will happen next, even as the film department was “licking its wounds” Friday, another employee said.

The biggest TV executives to lose their jobs so far were 20th Century Fox Television Distribution president Mark Kaner and Twentieth Television president Greg Meidel.

Also Read: Disney Keeps Key Leaders in Place After Day of Layoffs at Fox

The employee said 20th TV veterans were “walking on eggshells” trying to make a good impression on their new Disney bosses. But the employee was confident TV would be spared many more layoffs since Disney has already said senior Fox veterans Peter Rice and Dana Walden, will have leadership roles post-takeover.

Walden will serve as chairman of ABC Entertainment and the newly named Disney Television Studios, which encompasses ABC Studios, ABC Signature, 20th Century Fox TV and Fox 21. John Landgraf and Gary E. Knell, who serve as the chairs of FX and Nat Geo Partners, respectively, will report to Rice, who is chairman of Walt Disney Studios and co-chair of Disney Media Networks. Warner Bros. veteran Craig Hunegs was hired to run the newly-combined Disney Television Studios.

It was announced months ago that Ben Sherwood would exit as co-chair of Disney Media Networks and the president of the Disney-ABC Television Group.

Also Read: Twentieth Television President Greg Meidel Out as Disney-Fox Layoffs Continue

In a memo to staff on Friday, Hunegs called out individual studio heads — Patrick Moran at ABC Studios, Jonnie Davis and Howard Kurtzman at 20th Century Fox TV, and Bert Salke at Fox 21 — a strong sign they will remain in their posts.

“Disney brought over Dana and Peter to run the TV side and Dana and Peter brought over their people and intend to keep them,” the employee familiar with the TV changes told TheWrap. “Disney was interested in Fox more for TV to begin with because we were a missing piece, as their studio is smaller and 20th is very well established and brings so much to them. So there were always going to be fewer cuts on the TV side, with the bigger redundancies being a concern for the film studio.”

“Dana is assuring her direct reports they are safe and wants to keep them happy during this transition,” the person said.

On the film side, Emma Watts, as well as several other Fox film executives, will make the move to Disney’s studio entertainment management team. Watts will report directly to Disney studio head Alan Horn and will serve as vice chairman for 20th Century Fox Film and president of production at Fox. Nancy Utley and Stephen Gilula will stay on as co-chairs for Fox Searchlight and will also report directly to Horn.

Elizabeth Gabler will serve as president of production at Fox 2000 — for as long as there is a Fox 2000.

Umberto Gonzalez contributed to this story.

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What Bruce Lee’s Biographer Thinks of That ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Brad Pitt Fight Scene

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

A lot of people got mad this week about a brief fight between Bruce Lee and Brad Pitt’s character in the new teaser trailer for Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming “Once a Time in Hollywood.”

But Matthew Polly, the author of “Bruce Lee: A Life,” isn’t ready to fight anyone for Bruce Lee’s honor. Not yet.

“I find the ‘controversy’ fun,” he told TheWrap. “It’s a trailer. We have no idea what actually will happen between ‘Bruce’ and Brad Pitt or if they are even fighting for real or just acting a scene.”

Also Read: Why Bruce Lee Is All Over the Teaser for Tarantino’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’

The criticisms of the trailer footage ranged from the logistical (“So, we’re supposed to believe that Brad Pitt would stand a chance against Bruce Lee in a fight now?”) to the racial (“a white male power fantasy”). People took issue with Pitt’s character, Cliff Booth, disrespecting Lee (Mike Moh.)

The teaser features a scene that seems to take place on the set of “The Green Hornet,” a TV show on which Lee played Kato from 1966-67.

Lee issues a gentle warning to Pitt: “My hands are registered as lethal weapons. We get into a fight, I accidentally kill you, I go to jail.”

Also Read: Why Bruce Lee’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Costume Is an Intriguing Surprise

Pitt is unimpressed. “Anybody accidentally kills anybody in a fight they go to jail,” he says. “It’s called manslaughter.”

Violence ensues. Polly found a lot to like.

“It’s a pretty good representation of the fighting style of Lee’s character Kato on ‘The Green Hornet,’” he said. “Lee himself didn’t fight like Kato in real life — he invented a new style for the series. Tarantino is riffing on the Kato character.”
After closer study of the teaser, Polly added: “The jump side kick at the end to Pitt’s chest is a pure Kato move. The initial series of punches that ‘Bruce’ throws and Pitt blocks, ending with Pitt trapping ‘Bruce’s’ arm is more like traditional Hong Kong kung-fu movie choreography, but Bruce is wearing the black gloves from Kato. So more or less, it’s Kato — a homage rather than a pure imitation.”
And, in case you were wondering: “There’s no record of Lee ever saying that his hands were registered as lethal weapons, and I doubt he ever did. But Lee was a big talker and liked to brag, so Tarantino is not too far off base riffing on Lee’s tough guy legend. Plus, it’s a great setup for Pitt’s punchline.”
Polly, a martial arts master himself, was impressed not just with Moh’s fighting style, but also his acting. “Probably the best part of the Mike Moh’s version of Lee is the accent. He has the intonations almost the same,” he said.
As we’ve written before, there’s a lot we can pull from the teaser. The “Green Hornet” scene is one of several indications that the film won’t take place close to the date of the Charles Manson slayings, but will rather cover an entire era. The Lee scene seems to take place at least two years before the killings.
As Polly recounts in his book, Lee played a strange and nearly forgotten role in the investigation of the Manson murders. At one point, slain actress Sharon Tate’s widower, Roman Polanski, considered Lee a suspect in the killings.
You can hear Polly tell that story — and many others — on the “Shoot This Now” podcast, available on Apple and right here:
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Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’: Yes, Hands Across America Was a Real Thing in the ’80s

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

For those of you who just saw Jordan Peele’s “Us” and wondered where the writer-director got that ingeniously insane idea for Hands Across America in the 1980s-set portion of the film, wonder no more.

It came from history. Hands Across America was a real thing that totally actually happened in 1986. Like, for real.

The idea was hatched in 1985 by Ken Kragen, a music manager and film and TV producer. Kragen was a founding member of USA for Africa, of which Hands Across America was a part. It followed the famed charity single “We Are the World” that featured artists such as Michael Jackson, Lionel Ritchie, Stevie Wonder, Tina Turner and a host of other popular musicians during that era.

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USA for Africa, as the name suggests, was established to ease the pain of poverty in Africa and the U.S.. The idea behind Hands Across America was that by gathering roughly 6 million people to join hands across the continental United States — across four time zones through 16 states and Washington, D.C., from Long Beach, Calif., to New York City — they could raise awareness for poverty and homelessness.

Participants donated money to reserve spaces in the line, which stretched 4,124 miles from coast to coast, and the benefit raised $15 million for the cause, after costs, according to the New York Times.

President Ronald Reagan, then-Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton and a host of celebrities from Michael Jackson to Robin Williams to Kathleen Turner all took part.

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Peele’s film begins with a commercial from 1986 promoting Hands Across America — and the idea resurfaces later in the film as well as a brutally poignant metaphor about poverty, homelessness and the discarded.

“Us” isn’t the first film or TV show to mention the event, which has been referenced in movies like the 1989 Shelley Long comedy “Troop Beverly Hills” and on shows like “Cheers,” “The Golden Girls,” “Seinfeld” and “30 Rock.”

The point is, Hands Across America really did happen.

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Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’: Are There Really Thousand of Miles of Hidden Tunnels All Across the Country?

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Jordan Peele’s “Us” opens with an unusual piece of trivia: Across the U.S., there are thousands of miles of underground tunnels that have been long forgotten. The film says they include abandoned subway tunnels, unused sewers or old mine shafts — and many have no clear purpose at all.

If you haven’t seen “Us,” we won’t spoil why exactly that’s significant. But it’ll immediately make you wonder whether there’s a factual basis to the claim. Are there really a whole network of tunnels that people have just forgotten? Peele has had an answer for just about every other seemingly innocuous reference or image in the film, so where did he get this detail?

One person who knows first-hand that Peele isn’t just making something up is Will Hunt, the author of the just-published book “Underground: A Human History of the Worlds Beneath Our Feet.” He’s explored many of the caves, tunnels and underground passageways that do exist across the U.S. along with many urban explorers, and he said the scope of these tunnels would surprise you.

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“There are way more tunnels underground wherever you are in the United States than you would imagine. There are just crazy layers of infrastructure, whether they be active or abandoned transportation tunnels, sewer lines, aqueducts or even military or government infrastructure hidden underground,” Hunt said. “Wherever you go, there’s something under your feet that people don’t think about.”

However, Peele imagines quite a universe in these underground tunnels — no spoilery details here. While Hunt didn’t consult with Peele and hasn’t seen “Us,” he knows the idea of the underground as a metaphor is ripe for a screenplay.

“The underground has always been the unconscious,” Hunt said. “When we’re talking about the unconscious of a culture, of the United States, a good place to explore those forces is beneath the surface.”

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Hunt noted that there’s substantial evidence that hundreds of people live in tunnels, just out view of regular society, in places ranging from Las Vegas to Moscow to Bucharest to New York City.

“In the deeper strata of New York City, you find mole people, you find people who have made homes for themselves in deep hidden nooks and alcoves under the city,” he said. “They’re these marginalized, forgotten people who are living completely out of sight in essentially a separate reality.”

He mentioned a “massive community” that was found underneath the Upper West Side of Manhattan between the ’80s and ’90s where people had “literally built homes out of wares salvaged from the surface.” Hunt said these people had water sources, generators and had siphoned electricity to get by.

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“Basically, any city of any size that has like a stratified society where there are people who are struggling, you’re going to find these communities who have gathered in hidden places,” Hunt said. “And they say something about the society on the surface. They’re a reflection of our darknesses, the injustices of our society on the surface.”

Hunt is a journalist who earned the trust of the many urban explorers who document such tunnels and communities, but he said they typically pass along information only through oral tradition, and very few of these tunnels have ever been formally mapped or quantified.

For a real-life account of mole people and the homeless who live in New York City, Hunt recommends the 2000 documentary “Dark Days.” But he said the idea of the underground representing the other and the unconscious of society is something that goes back generations and one that is great for fiction.

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“From a fiction writer’s perspective or a screenwriter’s perspective, to have this dark territory inhabited by these forgotten people directly beneath this neon cityscape is insane,” Hunt said. “When you’re not super-conscious of the world and you’re not thinking hard about reality, you’re in your own space. You’re thinking about what’s in front of you, and you’re not thinking deeper. You can’t talk about this without going into these silly underground puns.”

“But you’re not thinking deep. You’re not looking inside of yourself or not probing or inquiring or investigating,” he continued. “You’re just sort of complacent, and you’re moving through the world comfortable in your own reality. But when you start to question things, and are starting to look beneath the surface of reality, you’re starting to think deeper about the hidden aspects of the world.”

Peele’s “Us” is in theaters now. Hunt’s book “Underground” is available now.

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Issa Rae-led ‘The Photograph’ Adds Chante Adams, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Y’lan Noel and Kelvin Harrison Jr

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Universal Pictures is spreading the love, announcing on Friday that the studio has added Chante Adams, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Y’lan Noel and Kelvin Harrison Jr. to the cast of its upcoming film “The Photograph.”

The film, which stars “Insecure” creator Issa Rae alongside Lakeith Stanfield (“Sorry to Bother You”), is a romantic drama centered on intertwining love stories in the past and present.

“The Photograph” was written, and will be directed by “Everything, Everything” director Stella Meghie, who has worked with Rae in the past, directing the season three “Insecure” episode “Fresh Like.”

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Rae has also worked before with new “The Photographer” cast member Y’lan Noel, who plays Daniel on HBO’s “Insecure.” Noel also starred in 2018’s “The First Purge.”

Chante Adams recently starred in “Monsters and Men” along with John David Washington, and she’s most known for her role as ’80s and ’90s rapper  Roxanne Shante in Netflix’s “Roxanne Roxanne.” Fellow “Monsters and Men” co-stars Kelvin Harrison Jr. and Jasmine Cephas Jones, of “Hamilton” fame, also joined the cast.

What roles they will play wasn’t revealed.

“The Photograph” is based on an original spec script that Meghie wrote. Will Packer will produce the film along with James Lopez under his company Will Packer Productions.

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Universal’s senior vice president of production Sara Scott and creative executive Mika Pryce will oversee production for the studio. Rae will serve as executive producer.

Adams is represented by WME and Brillstein Entertainment Partners. Jones is represented by ICM, Ryan LeVine at Jackoway Austen Tyerman and Andrew Tetenbaum at ATA Management.

Harrison Jr. is represented by WME, Stride Management and Del, Shaw, Moonves, Tanaka, Finkelstein & Lezcano, and Noel is represented by WME, Stride Management and Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush & Kaller.

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The Long, Twisted Story Behind ‘I Got 5 on It,’ the Secret Weapon of Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

In most movies, a fight with red-robed doppelgängers to the tune of N.W.A.’s “F— the Police” would be the showstopper. But Jordan Peele’s “Us” has an even better musical trick up its sleeve — its deft dissection of the 1995 Luniz hit “I Got 5 on It.”

“I Got 5 on It” comes from an underrated school of hip-hop that discusses low-stakes and even trivial problems with high-level musicality. The “5” refers to a five-dollar bill kicked in toward the purchase of marijuana. The song basically says, if you want to smoke some of my weed, please kick in some cash. It’s a gripe everyone’s had at some point about weed, gas, or french fries.

But the song remains such an earworm 24 years after its debut because nothing about its music sounds trivial. The music has overtones of hurt and betrayal, and may owe those qualities to its surprising and contentious origin story. Needless to say, the song’s complexity serves “Us” very well.

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We’re introduced to the song as the Wilson family tries to relax on a trip to the beach. (Spoilers follow.) It’s a fraught trip because mom Adelaide Wilson (Lupita Nyong’o) doesn’t really want to go. She has bad memories of the beach from childhood.

(Story continues after the song):

When “I Got 5 On It” comes on the radio, dad Gabe Wilson (Winston Duke) sees it as a fun throwback. (It was the 13th biggest single of 1995). It’s also a bit of a guilty pleasure, since his kids, Zora and Jason, figure out pretty quickly that the song is about drugs. The parents make the requisite denials before the family tries to bond over a ’90s banger.

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But even once they get past the drug issue, there’s still something wrong: Adelaide tries to get Jason to snap along to the beat, but she’s clearly off beat herself. This is foreshadowing how she doesn’t really fit in, to her family or her world.

Later, as it becomes apparent that the family’s apparent happiness came at a terrible price, and is built on a terrible deception, the once-fun song transmogrifies into something grotesque. The movie’s “Tethered Mix” slows things down, and fully indulges the ominous quality hinted at in the original “I Got 5 on It.”

Just listen:

The producer of “I Got 5 on it,” Tone Capone, worked with intense care to create such a layered musical atmosphere. The song contains an almost-ridiculous juxtaposition of complex sound and straightforward subject matter, but it works beautifully because producer Capone, the Luniz (rappers Yukmouth and Numskull), and vocalist Michael Marshall totally commit. It’s striking how passionately Marshall sings the line: “Partner, let’s go half on a sack.”

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Marshall had a good reason to take the song very personally.

There’s a widespread impression that “I Got 5 on It” is built around a sample of the 1987 Club Nouveau song “Why You Treat Me So Bad.” (On one “I Got 5 on it” remix, guest rapper E-40 begins his verse by rapping, “Why ya treat me so bad?/40 makes it happen.”)

But the notion that Club Nouveau originated the music is bitterly disputed.

Tone Capone, aka Anthony Gilmour, said in an interview with WhoSampled writer Chris Read that the Luniz brought “the idea and the hook to me.” Capone was working at the time with Marshall, a high school friend.

As Marshall explained in a 2014 interview with Trayze TV, “the Luniz wanted to sample the song ‘Why You Treat Me So Bad.’”

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As it happened, he knew the song well. Very well.

He told Trayze TV: “‘Why You Treat Me So Bad’ is a melody that was stolen from me from a song called ‘Thinking About You,’ so I had an opportunity to be able to create over the beat that I had first.”

Yes, that’s right: As Marshall described it, at the time the Luniz brought the “Why You Treat Me So Bad” hook to Capone, he just happened to be working with Marshall, who just happened to the real author of the hook.

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A Medium post by Gino Sorcinelli concluded that “Thinking About You” did indeed precede “Why You Treat Me So Bad.” Sorcinelli wrote last year that Jay King, the former executive producer of Timex Social Club’s hit song “Rumors,” created Club Nouveau after a falling out with Marshall. Sorcinelli said that when King exited, he had several demos from Timex Social Club, including “Thinking About You.”

King, who is now a respected on-air personality on Sacramento radio station KDEE 97.5, did not immediately respond to requests for comment through the station.

Sorcinelli’s entire post is highly recommended. It gives the date of “Thinking About You” as 1986, the year before the release of “Why You Treat Me So Bad.” (Interestingly, 1986 is also the year when “Us” begins. It’s fun to wonder if Gabe became fixated on the music the same year that Adelaide fixated on a Michael Jackson shirt that may or may not have inspired the entire look of the red-garbed, gloved doppelgängers who pervade the film.)

Here’s “Thinking About You”:

So which version did Tone Capone sample? Neither.

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As he explained to WhoSampled, Capone played the song himself in order to get the perfect sound we hear on “I Got 5 On It.”

“I looped the Club Nouveau record first and it was too fast,” he explained. “I slowed it down and it sounded good but after I analyzed it more I felt like I could replay it and control the breaks of the song better.”

As Capone further told WhoSampled, that started him down a prolific and lucrative path of replaying hooks instead of sampling them, so he could squeeze out exactly what he needed from each hook without the extra percussive sounds, vocals, or whatever else that he didn’t need.

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Of course, “I Got 5 on It” isn’t built on just one hook: Tone Capone also borrows from Audio Two’s frequently sampled “Top Billin’” and Kool and the Gang’s “Jungle Boogie,” which got a popularity boost in 1994, the year before “I Got 5 on It,” from its inclusion in Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction.”

But no one disputes those samples the way they do the main hook.

So yes, “I Got 5 on It” is about drugs. But it’s also about duality, and second chances, and perhaps betrayal.

Just like “Us.”

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Joaquin Phoenix Is Watching Closely in Intense New ‘Joker’ Image (Photo)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Didn’t anyone ever tell the Joker he’ll hurt his eyes by sitting too close to the TV?

That isn’t stopping Joaquin Phoenix, in a new image from “Joker” teased by director Todd Phillips, from leaning into his old fashioned TV set. It’s a fairly solemn new look. Why so serious?

“Editing #Joker,” Phillips said on Friday via Instagram. The black and white still shows Phoenix hunched over while sitting on a coffee table and getting up close to an old TV and what looks like a VCR player. The retro living space and Phoenix’s formal attire continue to make “Joker” look unlike any other superhero movie we’ve seen. Fittingly, TheWrap previously reported that the origin story for the Joker will be more of a mid-budget crime thriller than a superhero blockbuster.

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“Joker” has been described as a character study and a “cautionary tale,” depicting how Phoenix’s Arthur — as he is named in this super-villain origin tale — is so beaten and neglected by the brutal world of Gotham City that his mind breaks, transforming him into Batman’s most infamous nemesis. The plot for the film is being kept under wraps, but it’s a safe bet that audiences can expect a dark tone.

Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, Shea Whigham, Frances Conroy, Marc Maron, Douglas Hodge and Brett Cullen co-star in the film that Phillips co-wrote with Scott Silver.

Fans are still awaiting a trailer for the film that arrives on Oct. 4. See the new image below.

View this post on Instagram

Editing #Joker

A post shared by Todd Phillips (@toddphillips1) on

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Zac Efron, Amanda Seyfried Join Animated Scooby-Doo Film ‘Scoob’ at Warner Bros

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Zac Efron and Amanda Seyfried have joined the cast of Warner Bros.’ Scooby-Doo animated feature “Scoob,” an individual with knowledge of the project told TheWrap.

Efron will voice Fred, while Seyfried will play Daphne. Tony Cervone is directing, while Chris Columbus, Charles Roven, Pam Coats and Allison Abbate are serving as producers.

Gina Rodriguez will voice Velma, while Will Forte will play Shaggy and Tracy Morgan will voice Captain Caveman — not part of the Scooby-Doo universe but a Hanna-Barbera character like the Scooby gang. Frank Welker will be voicing Scooby.

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In the film, the Mystery Inc. group will team up with other members of the Hanna-Barbera universe to save the world from Dick Dastardly.

The last “Scooby” film to hit theaters was “Scooby-Doo: Monsters Unleashed” in 2004. That film made $84.2 million at the box office. It served as a sequel to 2002’s “Scooby-Doo,” which earned $153.3 million. The originally television series debuted in 1969, and many spin-off series have been produced since due to its success.

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Efron most recently starred in “Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile” and “The Greatest Showman,” and will next be seen opposite Matthew McConaughey in “The Beach Bum.” He is represented by CAA, Alchemy Entertainment and Viewpoint.

Seyfried was last seen in “Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again” and will next appear in “The Art of Racing in the Rain” and “You Should Have Left.” She is represented by Innovative Artists and Relevant.

Deadline first reported the news.

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With the release of “Us,” Jordan Peele has cemented his status as the next can’t-miss horror filmmaker. He’s also proven himself to be quite the horror expert, as he’s sprinkled in the most references to fright flicks we&#…

Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’: What Does the Bible Passage ‘Jeremiah 11:11’ Say?

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

If you’ve just stepped out of Jordan Peele’s “Us,” your head is probably spinning with questions.

While we can’t explain the existential meaning of its themes like identity, free will and the fear of The Other that Peele poses throughout, we can help with one detail left unanswered by the film: What does the Bible passage “Jeremiah 11:11” say?

If you haven’t seen “Us,” yet, some SPOILERS!!!! follow.

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In the opening scene of “Us,” we see Lupita Nyong’o’s character Adelaide as a young girl in 1986. While walking through a carnival on a boardwalk by the beach, she sees a homeless man with a piece of cardboard that reads “Jeremiah 11:11.” When she returns to the beach as an adult, she sees the same homeless man with the same cardboard sign, only now he’s being carted into an ambulance as a bloody corpse.

Here’s “Jeremiah 11:11,” as translated into English in the King James Bible:

Therefore thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will bring evil upon them, which they shall not be able to escape; and though they shall cry unto me, I will not hearken unto them.

Pretty doom and gloom! Although it’s certainly appropriate for a horror movie like “Us,” it’s not among the more common verses used in the movies.

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The book of Jeremiah is part of the Bible’s Old Testament, and Jeremiah is the second of the Latter Prophets in the Hebrew Bible and the second of the prophets in the Christian Bible. The passage in particular is part of a covenant between God and the people of Israel. God says through Jeremiah that he would protect the people of Israel in exchange for worshipping Him exclusively. But he warns of a “conspiracy” among the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

“They are turned back to the iniquities of their forefathers, which refused to hear my words; and they went after other gods to serve them,” the passage reads. “The house of Israel and the house of Judah have broken my covenant which I made with their fathers.”

You could make the connection that, with this passage, Peele is referring to the bond between men and the other “tethered,” or the clones that reside in tunnels underneath the surface. And it also teases how Adelaide’s clone Red is so driven to revenge with no chance for redemption or salvation for those living above ground.

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Even if the passage itself doesn’t have the strongest narrative tie, “11:11” pops up again in the film. The numbers are a mirrored image, which fits perfectly with the doppelgänger themes of “Us.” And it’s also the time that’s stuck on the clock when the power in the family’s home goes out and when the copycat families in red first appear.

Didn’t expect Jordan Peele to get all Biblical on you, huh? Hope that clears up at least one question. As to whether you have a clone controlling your every move and slowly awaiting to murder you, you’re on your own with that one.

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‘Skid Row Marathon’ Film Review: Documentary Puts Homeless Runners in Soft Focus

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Los Angeles’ Skid Row is rarely a place filmmakers go looking for inspirational stories. It has been home to the city’s homeless population since the 1930s and has only grown in size thanks to the housing crisis. In “Skid Row Marathon,” director Mark Hayes decides to explore not Skid Row in particular, but a judge who has formed a running club with some Skid Row residents to train for marathons, and offers insights into this unique group of people who have struggled in life.

Though some of the stories are inspirational, Hayes takes on a “white savior” view too often, making the documentary feel misguided and detached.

It’s always a little bit strange for me to see how a writer or director who isn’t from L.A. or has only lived here a few years, takes on a subject that is very much an L.A. thing. Over the years, Skid Row has become the homeless capital of America. I can recall being about six years old and driving through Skid Row to get to my mom’s favorite seafood market and seeing sidewalks full of shopping carts, tents and cardboard boxes surrounding the Los Angeles Mission, as people came in and out of the mission, in dirty clothes, looking weary and heading to wherever they would be laying their heads for the night.

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As a child, I was optimistic, thinking eventually everyone would get a home and a happy ending because there is no way we couldn’t help them, right? Instead, Skid Row has become a piece of pop culture: It’s been a location in music videos (like Michael Jackson’s “Beat It”) had a rock band named after it, and even inspiring a song in the New York-based musical “Little Shop of Horrors.” And yet, Skid Row itself remains covered in poverty and despair. That’s a bit what “Skid Row Marathon” feels like — just another addition to pop culture.

The central subject of the film is criminal court Judge Craig Mitchell, a man whose mother used to take him to Watts instead of Disneyland and who, at one point, was about to join the priesthood before deciding on a law career. A former defendant contacted him after his release from prison and asked the judge to meet him at the Midnight Mission homeless shelter, where he was living. Mitchell felt inspired to start a running club for some of its residents, which include a former gang member (Rafael Cabrera), a single mother (Rebecca Hayes), a musician (Ben Shirley), a painter (David Askew), and a former college athlete (Mody Diop).

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The film cuts to and from each runner’s story back to the judge’s, as well as to footage of the group running and their journeys to and from marathons in Ghana and Rome. It details each person’s struggle, largely with addiction, and does touch a bit on a darker moment when one of the runners relapses and returns to living on the streets. The footage, shot internationally by Hayes and cinematographer James Stolz, made those specific scenes feel like a travelogue and enhanced those particular stories, but when it comes to Skid Row, it all feels a bit light.

Wanting to be simply a positive story took away from the realism of what that area is and what it represents in one of the wealthiest cities in the United States, which strips away the elements of what would make this documentary feel more vital.

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The group of runners is diverse, but four out of the six are men of color, and the optics are uneven when deciding who is doing the actual work here: Is it the judge for putting together the club, or is it the group for working to overcome their individual struggles? I understand what the filmmakers were trying to do in returning to the judge, over and over, as he is the one who leads the club, but tonally, it feels as if the film were praising him for his efforts for giving this group a chance of redemption when it’s really the people in the group themselves who deserve that recognition.

“Skid Row Marathon” is a light-hearted attempt to show a softer side of a pressing issue. While the film will no doubt inspire some, it lacks an understanding of the real issues that exist in that environment. It becomes part of the system that proclaims that homelessness is a problem, but it does nothing to say why.

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STX Entertainment Chief Brand Officer Patti Röckenwagner Exits Company

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Patti Röckenwagner is leaving STX Entertainment as the company’s chief brand officer, CEO Robert Simmonds wrote in a memo to staff on Friday.

“While I support her decision, personally I will miss her expansive worldview, strategic counsel and deep connections in the global media and business worlds,” Simmonds wrote in the email. “Those of you who have worked closely with Patti can no doubt attest to her insightful professional advice, expert leadership, and her effective oversight of our brand strategy and positioning.”

Röckenwagner joined STX in 2016 as the media and entertainment company’s chief communications officer before being promoted to her latest role in 2018.

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Simmonds said in the memo that Röckenwagner is leaving to pursue “another opportunity,” though where she’s heading now was not announced.

Röckenwagner will stay with STX through a transitional phase. Simmonds said the company will have more to announce soon.

“It has been a fun, intense and rewarding time for STX and our industry, and there’s no other team I’d want to be on the ride with than with you,” Röckenwagner said in a statement. “I’m excited for your continued success and will be rooting for you.”

More to come…

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Brie Larson Buys a Unicorn From Samuel L Jackson in Trailer for Netflix’s ‘Unicorn Store’ (Video)

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Where would one hope to find a unicorn? At the Unicorn Store, of course.

That’s what Brie Larson says in the trailer for her upcoming Netflix film, “Unicorn Store,” which she also directed. And who better to purchase a unicorn from than Larson’s “Captain Marvel” co-star, Samuel L. Jackson, dressed all in pink and with a massive afro?

“You need to love yourself,” Jackson tells Larson’s character, Kit. “Get out there and show us what you can do.”

Also Read: Even Brie Larson Can’t Go on Samuel L Jackson and Magic Johnson’s Italy Vacation (Video)

Larson made her directorial debut on the comedy-fantasy about a lonely 20-something who is kicked out of school and forced to take a boring temp job and move back in with her parents. But her life changes when she discovers a mysterious store that offers to give her childlike heart its greatest desire. In her case, that’s a unicorn.

Samantha McIntyre wrote the screenplay, and “Unicorn Store” also stars Joan Cusack and Bradley Whitford. The film first premiered at Toronto in 2017, and it was acquired recently by Netflix, who will now release it globally on their streaming service on April 5.

Watch the first trailer for “Unicorn Store” above.

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