Review Category : Entertainment

Texas Theater Showing “Team America” After Sony Pulls “The Interview”

Kevin Winter/Getty Images(DALLAS) — What do you do when threats force Sony and all the major movie chains across the country to pull the movie The Interview?

One theater in Texas knows just what to do: show 2004’s Team America, another satire involving North Korea, written by the creators of South Park.

On the Facebook page for the Alamo Drafthouse theater in Dallas-Fort Worth, the message reads, “For the record, our plan was to still show The Interview…unfortunately these decisions aren’t always ours to make. But in light of these recent events, we only have one thing to say: ‘AMERICA F*** YEAH!'”

The “America…Yeah!” statement refers to the theme song of the old film.

It continues, “Join us for a special showing of the TEAM AMERICA QUOTE-ALONG” with subtitles for the film’s songs on Dec. 27 at 7 p.m.”

“This show is FREE, because you can’t spell ‘FREEDOM’ without ‘FREE,'” the message concludes.

For those who have never seen the decade-old movie, Team America’s plot involves Kim Jong-il, the late father of current North Korea Leader Kim Jong-un. It’s another satire much like The Interview, but more violent as American forces battle terrorists led by the World Police. It’s also filmed using puppets.

The IMDB summary reads, “Popular Broadway actor Gary Johnston is recruited by the elite counter-terrorism organization Team America: World Police. As the world begins to crumble around him, he must battle with terrorists, celebrities and falling in love.”

Franco and Rogen’s The Interview is based on their characters trying to take out the current North Korea leader.

“We’re just trying to make the best of an unfortunate situation,” James Wallace, creative manager and programmer for the Texas theater, told The Hollywood Reporter about swapping out the films.

The Alamo Drafthouse did not immediately return ABC News’ request for comment.

Sony pulled the plug on The Interview release date of Dec. 25 after major movie chains like AMC and Regal all chose not to show the movie because of hacker threats.

“In light of the decision by the majority of our exhibitors not to show the film The Interview, we have decided not to move forward with the planned December 25 theatrical release,” Sony said in a statement Wednesday. “We respect and understand our partners’ decision and, of course, completely share their paramount interest in the safety of employees and theater-goers.”

The company added that it stands by the filmmakers and “their right to free expression.”

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Angelina Jolie on Bucking the Hollywood Establishment: ‘I Do What I Want to Do’

ABC/Lorenzo Bevilaqua(NEW YORK) — Angelina Jolie has never played by Hollywood’s rules, and she doesn’t plan on changing that anytime soon

“I never had a plan in my life,” the 39-year-old actress-turned-director tells The Hollywood Reporter. “I do what I want to do. And if suddenly tomorrow I couldn’t do anything, I could deal with that.”

“I’d be happy at home being a mom,” she adds.

These days, Jolie is most interested in directing, and so far she seems to be one of the few women to earn a place among the A-list stars who have made the transition.

Her third directorial effort, By the Sea, seems a bit of an odd choice for the Maleficent star. The film, which she also wrote and stars in with husband Brad Pitt was shot in Malta, right after the famous couple tied the knot. It centers around a husband and wife trying to rekindle their dying marriage during a trip to Europe.

“Yes, we spent our honeymoon playing two people in a terrible marriage,” Jolie tells the industry trade publication, admitting, “I’m sure a therapist would have a field day analyzing the films I choose to do.”

“But it’s been 10 years since Brad and I have worked together, she explains. “It felt like it was time.”

By the Sea is expected to hit theaters in 2015. Jolie’s directing credits also include the documentary A Place in Time, the 2011 film In the Land of Blood and Honey and her latest, Unbroken, which opens Christmas Day.

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Charlie Sheen to Reprise “Ferris Bueller” Role for “The Goldbergs”

Frank Ockenfels/FX(NEW YORK) — Charlie Sheen will reprise one of his early roles for a guest appearance on ABC’s 1980s-centric comedy The Goldbergs.

The Anger Management star will channel his Ferris Bueller’s Day Off character — the unnamed bad boy in the police station — for an episode airing in early 2015, according to People magazine.

Sheen’s character in the 1986 movie had a flirtatious conversation with Jennifer Grey’s Jeanie, the sister of Ferris Bueller. In the episode of The Goldbergs featuring Sheen, Hayley Orrantia’s Erica will essentially fill the Jeanie role.

There’s been speculation that Sheen will return to the CBS sitcom from which he was fired a few years ago, Two and a Half Men, for its series finale on Feb. 19, but nothing’s been confirmed.

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North Korea-Set Thriller Starring Steve Carell Cancelled

NBC Photo: Mitchell Haaseth(LOS ANGELES) — The hack attack on Sony not only altered plans for its comedy The Interview, it also resulted in the cancellation of a movie from a different company that was to have starred Steve Carell.

Deadline reports New Regency has pulled the plug on the untitled thriller, which would have been set in North Korea and helmed by Pirates of the Caribbean director Gore Verbinski. Production would have started in March.

Fox had declined to distribute the film, and Deadline’s sources say that given the current situation with Sony, it didn’t make sense to move forward with it.

Verbinski reacted with a statement to Deadline that reads in part, “My thoughts: I find it ironic that fear is eliminating the possibility to tell stories that depict our ability to overcome fear.”

Sony Pictures announced Wednesday it has cancelled the Christmas Day release date of The Interview, after hackers threatened theaters that planned to show the film. Several movie chains pulled The Interview from its schedule prior to Sony’s decision.

Carell tweeted on Wednesday that it was a “sad day for creative expression.”

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“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” Opens One Year from Today

LucasFilm(NEW YORK) — Dec. 18, 2015 — one year from today — will be a day long remembered for Star Wars fans: it’s when Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits theaters. The film, the first Star Wars movie released since ABC’s parent company Disney purchased George Lucas’ galaxy far, far away, is the first chapter in a new trilogy.

For now, not much is known about the plot of J.J. Abrams’ film, so fans the world over have resorted to poring over every frame of the 88-second teaser that was released on Black Friday.

Dan Casey, associate editor of the geek culture website Nerdist, says fans are excited about the fact that Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher, the stars of the original Star Wars films, are returning for this one.

“I think that people were honestly…quite surprised that the original cast was going to be returning, because it didn’t seem like something they wanted to do,” he said. “It felt like something that they were trying to distance themselves from, actually. So…that was just sort of like icing on the cake. It was — you know, if people were excited at ten, that kicked it up to eleven.”

Aside from the returning cast — which also includes Anthony Daniels as finicky protocol droid C-3PO, Kenny Baker as R2-D2, and Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca — The Force Awakens also stars series newcomers Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron, Daisy Ridley as Rey, and John Boyega as Finn.

The new character names were recently revealed by Abrams, who didn’t elaborate more about the newcomers’ roles. He was also mum about who Lupita Nyong’o, Gwendoline Christie, Adam Driver, Domhnall Gleeson, and Max von Sydow will be playing.

While some Star Wars fans were disappointed by the three prequel films, Casey insists the movie from lifelong Star Wars fan Abrams seems specifically designed to make disgruntled fans say, “All is forgiven.”

“Everything I’ve seen so far has just been like a “Hey, come back to the fold,” Casey tells ABC News Radio. “It’s sort of like that ‘come to Jesus’ moment where they recognize some of the faults with the prequel trilogy and they’re trying to course correct and from everything I’ve seen so far, just judging by that trailer, it sounds like they have their heart in the right place.”

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Charlie Sheen to Reprise “Ferris Bueller” Role for “The Goldbergs”

Frank Ockenfels/FX(NEW YORK) — Charlie Sheen will reprise one of his early roles for a guest appearance on ABC’s 1980s-centric comedy The Goldbergs.

The Anger Management star will channel his Ferris Bueller’s Day Off character — the unnamed bad boy in the police station — for an episode airing in early 2015, according to People magazine.

Sheen’s character in the 1986 movie had a flirtatious conversation with Jennifer Grey’s Jeanie, the sister of Ferris Bueller. In the episode of The Goldbergs featuring Sheen, Hayley Orrantia’s Erica will essentially fill the Jeanie role.

There’s been speculation that Sheen will return to the CBS sitcom from which he was fired a few years ago, Two and a Half Men, for its series finale on Feb. 19, but nothing’s been confirmed.

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Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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North Korea-Set Thriller Starring Steve Carell Cancelled

NBC Photo: Mitchell Haaseth(LOS ANGELES) — The hack attack on Sony not only altered plans for its comedy The Interview, it also resulted in the cancellation of a movie from a different company that was to have starred Steve Carell.

Deadline reports New Regency has pulled the plug on the untitled thriller, which would have been set in North Korea and helmed by Pirates of the Caribbean director Gore Verbinski. Production would have started in March.

Fox had declined to distribute the film, and Deadline’s sources say that given the current situation with Sony, it didn’t make sense to move forward with it.

Verbinski reacted with a statement to Deadline that reads in part, “My thoughts: I find it ironic that fear is eliminating the possibility to tell stories that depict our ability to overcome fear.”

Sony Pictures announced Wednesday it has cancelled the Christmas Day release date of The Interview, after hackers threatened theaters that planned to show the film. Several movie chains pulled The Interview from its schedule prior to Sony’s decision.

Carell tweeted on Wednesday that it was a “sad day for creative expression.”

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“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” Opens One Year from Today

LucasFilm(NEW YORK) — Dec. 18, 2015 — one year from today — will be a day long remembered for Star Wars fans: it’s when Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits theaters. The film, the first Star Wars movie released since ABC’s parent company Disney purchased George Lucas’ galaxy far, far away, is the first chapter in a new trilogy.

For now, not much is known about the plot of J.J. Abrams’ film, so fans the world over have resorted to poring over every frame of the 88-second teaser that was released on Black Friday.

Dan Casey, associate editor of the geek culture website Nerdist, says fans are excited about the fact that Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher, the stars of the original Star Wars films, are returning for this one.

“I think that people were honestly…quite surprised that the original cast was going to be returning, because it didn’t seem like something they wanted to do,” he said. “It felt like something that they were trying to distance themselves from, actually. So…that was just sort of like icing on the cake. It was — you know, if people were excited at ten, that kicked it up to eleven.”

Aside from the returning cast — which also includes Anthony Daniels as finicky protocol droid C-3PO, Kenny Baker as R2-D2, and Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca — The Force Awakens also stars series newcomers Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron, Daisy Ridley as Rey, and John Boyega as Finn.

The new character names were recently revealed by Abrams, who didn’t elaborate more about the newcomers’ roles. He was also mum about who Lupita Nyong’o, Gwendoline Christie, Adam Driver, Domhnall Gleeson, and Max von Sydow will be playing.

While some Star Wars fans were disappointed by the three prequel films, Casey insists the movie from lifelong Star Wars fan Abrams seems specifically designed to make disgruntled fans say, “All is forgiven.”

“Everything I’ve seen so far has just been like a “Hey, come back to the fold,” Casey tells ABC News Radio. “It’s sort of like that ‘come to Jesus’ moment where they recognize some of the faults with the prequel trilogy and they’re trying to course correct and from everything I’ve seen so far, just judging by that trailer, it sounds like they have their heart in the right place.”

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Norman Bridwell, Creator of “Clifford the Big Red Dog,” Dead at 86

Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — The author and illustrator of the Clifford the Big Red Dog series of children’s books has died.

Norman Bridwell died on Martha’s Vineyard, off the Massachusetts coast, on Friday, according to the publisher of his series, Scholastic. He was 86.

Bridwell created Clifford the Big Red Dog in 1963, and the character was featured in dozens of books. Two new books, Clifford Goes to Kindergarten and Clifford Celebrates Hanukkah, will be released in 2015.

The character also inspired a PBS animated series of the same name.

Bridwell is survived by his wife, Norma; a daughter, Emily Elizabeth; a son, Timothy; and three grandchildren.

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Sony Pulls the Plug on Dec. 25 Release of “The Interview” After Threats

Sony(NEW YORK) — As major movie chains moved to pull The Interview from their holiday lineup after threats from the Sony Corp. hackers, Sony has decided to shelve the film.

“In light of the decision by the majority of our exhibitors not to show the film The Interview, we have decided not to move forward with the planned December 25 theatrical release,” the company said in a statement to ABC News. “We respect and understand our partners’ decision and, of course, completely share their paramount interest in the safety of employees and theater-goers.”

This decision came after all the biggest chains, including AMC and Regal, announced Wednesday they wouldn’t show the film. On Tuesday, Sony Corp. hackers warned of an impending attack on theaters that showed the film, which depicts the planned assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

“Due to the wavering support of the film The Interview by Sony Pictures, as well as the ambiguous nature of any real or perceived security threats, Regal Entertainment Group has decided to delay the opening of the film in our theatres,” Regal, which has nearly 600 theaters in 44 states, said in a statement Wednesday.

AMC followed suit, also stating the chain’s holiday lineup would move forward “without The Interview.”

Earlier, the Bow Tie chain released a statement pulling the film, saying the company is “saddened and angered by recent threats of terrorism” and that its mission is “to ensure the safety and comfort of our guests and employees.” Cineplex Entertainment, which has 162 theaters, also said Wednesday that it will “postpone” showing of the film.

The moves came shortly after Sony told theaters they do not have to show The Interview, after the group claiming responsibility for stealing troves of Sony executives’ emails posted a message on Pastebin apparently threatening attacks on the theaters where the movie will be played, sources said.

Actors James Franco and Seth Rogen also canceled all press appearances in light of the threats, a representative for Rogen said.

The Department of Homeland Security said the threat is not backed up by any “credible intelligence,” but sources told ABC News that the Sony hack and matters tied to it are being investigated not just as a criminal cyber matter but as a national security matter by the nation’s law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

A prime suspect is the North Korean regime, and sources say this hack has shown an unprecedented capacity and ability to directly harm a major corporation.

Last week, the FBI held a private meeting in New York with reps from across the entertainment industry to brief them on cyber-related threats against them. The Sony hack was not the only topic discussed, but it was a major one, sources said.

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