TheWrapTheWrap http://www.thewrap.com Covering Hollywood Tue, 25 Jul 2017 02:05:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8 Jimmy Fallon Proves Sean Spicer ‘Will Survive’ in Brilliant ‘Tonight Show’ Mashup (Video) http://www.thewrap.com/watch-sean-spicer-sing-i-will-survive-tonight-show-mashup/ http://www.thewrap.com/watch-sean-spicer-sing-i-will-survive-tonight-show-mashup/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 02:05:16 +0000 Ashley Eady http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680283 One of the best parts about Sean Spicer’s role as White House Press Secretary was the “Saturday Night Live” sketches he inspired. But now that he has stepped down, nighttime television may need to find a new way to make fun of him. “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” to the rescue!

On Monday, “The Tonight Show” posted a video on Twitter of Spicey “singing” Gloria Gaynor’s classic disco hit, “I Will Survive.” OK, so, he’s not really singing. Instead, they took snippets from his various press conferences and pieced together to form the exact song lyrics.

Observe Spicer’s musical talent below.

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Morning Joe' on Sean Spicer's Downfall: 'Loyalty Oath Appeared to Go in One Direction' (Video)

Sean Spicer Took a Mini-Fridge From Junior Staffers and Twitter Loves It

Sarah Huckabee Sanders Holds Post-Spicer Briefing: 'Look at His Great Television Ratings'

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‘Shadowhunters’ Star Dominic Sherwood on Season 2’s ‘Big Climax': Fans Will Be ‘Shocked’ http://www.thewrap.com/shadowhunters-dominic-sherwood-season-2-jace-clary/ http://www.thewrap.com/shadowhunters-dominic-sherwood-season-2-jace-clary/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 01:44:30 +0000 Ryan Gajewski http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680257 (Spoiler alert: Please do not read on if you haven’t watched Monday’s “Shadowhunters”)

Shadowhunters” viewers might not believe what they’re about to see.

Dominic Sherwood, who plays Jace on the Freeform series, told TheWrap that tension continues to build between his character and villain Sebastian (Will Tudor) as the show nears the Season 2 finale. Indeed, this is likely related to the cast revealing at Comic-Con that a key character will die in the finale.

“It’s dark — we’re approaching the end of the season now, so we’re coming to this big climax,” Sherwood said in an interview with TheWrap. “It’s one of those [moments of], ‘Oh, my God — that’s happening? Wow, cool!’ It’s pretty intense, and I think people are going to be pretty shocked.”

“It’s going to start ramping up more and more and more, and we’ll discover more about who Sebastian is and why he’s such a creepy mo-fo,” the actor continued. “There’s a lot of information to come in the next couple of episodes — a lot of passion, a lot of emotion, danger, heartbreak. I was heartbroken when I read the scripts, so I’m excited for people to see it.”

Fans recently got to experience a popular moment from Cassandra Clare’s book series when Jace and Clary kissed on the show during their visit to the Seelie Court, and Sherwood was aware that viewers’ expectations would be high.

“When you do the big scenes that people are waiting for in the books, there is a lot of pressure to get them right,” Sherwood said. “You really have to ground yourself and take some time and make sure we do justice to the fans who’ve been there since well before this was even a TV show, since Cassie wrote these books.”

Sherwood wouldn’t reveal much about what’s next for Jace and Clary, but it’s clear that trouble is afoot for Clary and Simon (Alberto Rosende), who recently put their romance on ice.

“Clary is so incredibly loyal, as is Simon, so that’s why this is going to be so hard for Simon,” he said. “When he loves, he loves with his entire heart.”

“Shadowhunters” airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on Freeform.

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Comic-Con 2017: The Winners and Losers (Photos)

Everything We Saw at Marvel's Comic-Con Panel, From Michelle Pfeiffer to 'Black Panther'

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New Dot-Sucks Websites Troll Trump http://www.thewrap.com/dot-sucks-rude-new-websites-stymie-trump/ http://www.thewrap.com/dot-sucks-rude-new-websites-stymie-trump/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 00:54:29 +0000 Susan Seager http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680117 If you think the president .sucks, the Internet has a whole new way for you to convey those feelings.

The Trump Organization has tried to prevent online criticism by buying thousands of anti-Trump website names and mothballing them. Among the anti-Trump websites purchased by Trump’s company are DonaldTrumpSucks.com, ImBeingSuedByTheDonald.com, VoteAgainstTrump.com, TrumpFraud.org and TrumpScam.com, according to CNNMoney.

But Trump either skipped or missed the opportunity to buy a new kind of trolling web domain — the kind that ends in .sucks.

Little-noticed by the public and apparently Trump, approximately 1,000 top level website name extensions were added to the internet marketplace starting in 2015. The new website names are a huge expansion from the 22 domain name extensions such as .com, .edu, .net, or.org.

Besides .sucks, the new gripe sites offer mocking extensions such as .fail, .exposed, .gripe, and .WTF.

Other new extensions include .porn, .adult, and .sex, as well as more politically minded ones like .vote, and .democrat.

And there are a couple Trump might actually like, such as .republican and .golf.

The introduction of all the new website name extensions has made it impossible for Trump, celebrities, and brands to scoop up and warehouse every single negative domain name.

“There are a million derogatory terms that you can use in a domain name,” DomainNameWire.com editor and domain consultant Andrew Allemann told TheWrap. “It’s kind of whack-a-mole — if you get rid of one name, another one will pop up.”

It’s not clear if Trump grew weary of the website name whack-a-mole or his team missed the 2015 roll-out of the new domain extensions. The Trump Organization has not responded to a request for comment.

According to the get.sucks.com website, Trump did not buy trump.sucks, donaldtrump.sucks, or presidenttrump.sucks.  As of this writing, these three domain names remain on sale for “premium” prices of $2,000 each annually, Vox Populi Registry CEO John Berard told TheWrap.

The president, busy as he is, also neglected to buy Trump.gripeTrump.fail and TrumpSucks.press.

All three of these websites were purchased by undisclosed buyers, according to a search on Whois.com. 

Unlike Trump, some celebrities and brands moved quickly to buy .sucks websites when they came available two years ago.

“House of Cards” star Kevin Spacey reportedly bought KevinSpacy.sucks and Singer Taylor Swift bought TaylorSwift.sucks, while Google, Apple, Instagram, WordPress, and Microsoft bought .sucks domains such as gmail.sucks, apple.sucks, siri.sucks and windowsphone.sucks.

The decision to sell the new domain name extensions was approved by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN, a non-profit based in Playa Vista, Calif.

It might seem legally risky to put up new gripe websites sites mocking Trump or huge companies like Microsoft and Apple. But the First Amendment would protect their owners from libel lawsuits, should Trump try to sue.

“Yes, the First Amendment should protect those sites,” Stanford law professor Mark Lemley told TheWrap.  “And Trump would certainly have no case; we allow much more freedom to make political statements than statements about brands.”

Brands would have a tough time suing too, he said.

“Under trademark law the first question is whether the use of such a site would confuse consumers into thinking that Microsoft or Apple sponsored something called ‘microsoft.sucks,'” Lemley said. “That seems extremely unlikely.”

Buying all these new domain names may be a waste of money because their reach remains dwarfed by the familiar .com websites. But if alternatives catch on, someone could do well with sutes like trump.exposed ($4,000) or trumpsaves.com ($5,000).

TrumpSucks.wtf, meanwhile, is selling for only $29.88.

WTF indeed.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Trump Is Taking a Page From the 'Real Housewives' Playbook, Andy Cohen Says

Trump Gives Washington a New Nickname: 'Drain the Sewer'

'The Simpsons' Rejected Donald Trump's Request for Guest Spot, Showrunner Says

Anthony Scaramucci Deletes Old Tweets That Bash Trump, GOP Policies

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Anne Hathaway and Alethea Jones Frontrunners to Star, Direct Sony’s ‘Barbie’ Movie http://www.thewrap.com/anne-hathaway-alethea-jones-frontrunners-star-direct-sonys-barbie-movie/ http://www.thewrap.com/anne-hathaway-alethea-jones-frontrunners-star-direct-sonys-barbie-movie/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 00:30:39 +0000 Jeremy Fuster http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680268 Anne Hathaway is in negotiations to star in Sony’s upcoming “Barbie” film with Alethea Jones in talks to direct, TheWrap has learned.

Based on the famous doll line, the film is currently slated for a June 29, 2018, release and is produced by Amy Pascal, Walter F. Parkes and Laurie MacDonald. Richard Dickson, president and COO of Mattel, is executive producing the movie.

Kim Caramele and Diablo Cody share writing credit on the screenplay, and Jones is considered the frontrunner to direct. Amy Schumer was previously attached to the project, but later dropped out.

Hathaway, who won an Oscar in 2013 for “Les Miserables,” most recently appeared in the Neon sci-fi film “Colossal.” She will next appear in Warner Bros.’ “Ocean’s Eight,” which is slated for a June 8, 2018 release.

Jones’ next film, the indie comedy “Fun Mom Dinner,” will be released August 4 from Momentum Pictures.

Hathaway is repped by CAA and Management 360. Jones is repped by The Paradigm Agency.

This story was first reported by The Tracking Board.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Barbie Doll Diversity Push Continues: Ken Gets a Dad Bod (Photo)

Amy Schumer Exits Live-Action 'Barbie' Movie

Amy Schumer's 'Barbie' Casting Sparks Fat-Shaming Backlash

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‘Dunkirk’ Fact Check: How Many Civilian Boats Came to Help? http://www.thewrap.com/dunkirk-fact-check-how-many-civilian-boats-came-to-help/ http://www.thewrap.com/dunkirk-fact-check-how-many-civilian-boats-came-to-help/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 00:28:25 +0000 Brian Welk http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680130 People have flocked by the boatload to see Christopher Nolan’s World War II epic “Dunkirk” about a massive evacuation effort that rescued over 300,000 British soldiers stranded on the beaches of France in the midst of enemy gunfire.

In the historical drama, Mark Rylance plays a British sailor who traveled to Dunkirk on his own small pleasure boat. In one inspiring moment, the movie suggests that dozens — if not hundreds — of civilian boats came to help the cause.

But how accurate is that scene? Just how many civilian boats were really on hand to answer the call?

During “Operation Dynamo,” as the Dunkirk rescue effort was called, over 700 private boats – called the “Little Ships of Dunkirk” — sailed from Ramsgate in England to Dunkirk in France. The history text “Dunkirk: Retreat to Victory” says the commissioned boats included everything from pleasure boats, yachts, fishing boats and small, motorized life boat.

The British government inspected the boats to make sure they could navigate shallow waters. As in the movie, many of the boats could not land on the beaches, and soldiers had to swim out to the boats.

It’s not very romantic to say so, but for the most part these boats were commissioned by the government and were piloted by members of the Navy. It’s a myth that countless individual civilians all sailed out on their own. but a small handful of fisherman actually did.

According to the Dunkirk Association of Little Ships, which is made up of the ships’ current owners: “Very few owners took their own vessels, apart from fishermen and one or two others. “

So Rylance’s character wasn’t unrealistic.

Nolan may be embellishing the history just a little bit by focusing on the character, but his story holds water.

Related stories from TheWrap:

5 Reasons Why 'Dunkirk' Beat Box Office Expectations

'Dunkirk' Fact Check: How Many People Were Actually Rescued?

All 10 Christopher Nolan Movies Ranked, From 'Memento' to 'Dunkirk' (Photos)

'Dunkirk' to Give Christopher Nolan Another Box Office Win With $51 Million Start

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Why ‘Girls Trip’ Succeeded Where ‘Rough Night’ and Other Adult Comedies Failed http://www.thewrap.com/how-did-girls-trip-succeed-where-rough-night-and-other-adult-comedies-failed/ http://www.thewrap.com/how-did-girls-trip-succeed-where-rough-night-and-other-adult-comedies-failed/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 00:27:15 +0000 Jeremy Fuster http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680100 For the first time in nearly a year, we have a hit adult comedy at the box office, and it’s Universal’s “Girls Trip.” Directed by Malcolm D. Lee, the film has posted the biggest opening in the genre so far this year with a final tally of $31.2 million.

It’s a big turnaround for R-rated, live action comedies, which have been struggling at the box office in recent months with films like “The House” and “Baywatch.” To find the last big raunchy hit, you need to go back to July 2016, when STX’s “Bad Moms” notched a $23.8 million opening and a $183.9 million cume ($113.2 million domestic). This year, however, no adult comedy had posted an opening over $20 million until “Girls Trip.”

The most notable of these disappointing 2017 results was for “Rough Night,” a comedy that shared some similarities to “Girls Trip” in that it starred several recognizable actresses in a tale of old friends reuniting with a wild night that gets way out of hand. But “Rough Night” only made $8 million in its opening weekend, and “Girls Trip” has already eclipsed its entire domestic total of $21.8 million. “Girls Trip” was able to do this despite having a smaller release than “Rough Night,” 2,591 screens to 3,162.

So what’s the difference? The first and most obvious answer, of course, is quality. Reception for “Rough Night” was decidedly mixed both among critics and audiences, with a 48 percent Rotten Tomatoes score and a C+ among audiences polled on CinemaScore. The general consensus seemed to be that there was nothing wrong with the cast, led by Scarlett Johansson and Kate McKinnon, but the film’s script was weighed down by a “Weekend at Bernie’s”-style plot that failed to hit many comedic and emotional beats. “Girls Trip,” on the other hand, won praise for doing a better job of getting audiences invested in its leading ladies and their relationships while engaging in hijinks that are funny without being morbid. The result? “Girls Trip” earned 89 percent on Rotten Tomatoes and the coveted A+ from CinemaScore.

But along with just being a great film, “Girls Trip” had other things going for it, a major one being that it fulfilled the demand for representation from female and African-American audiences. Films that put black actors and filmmakers in the spotlight like “Get Out,” “Moonlight,” “Hidden Figures,” and the upcoming “Black Panther” have become some of the most talked about titles of late, but such films are still few and far in-between on the release slate. “Girls Trip,” with its ode to African-American sisterhood, fulfilled a demand which hadn’t been satisfied in a while, as shown by its demographics breakdowns: 79 percent female, 59 percent African-American.

Completing the winning formula was a studio and a cast that knew how to get the word out. In addition to being a perfect fit for their roles, stars Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, Tiffany Haddish, and Regina Hall are all extremely active on social media and actively promoted the film. Then there’s Universal, which, unlike many other studios, has had no problem mining the adult comedy genre for big box office results. Two years ago in this exact same release frame, Universal was able to capitalize on Amy Schumer at the peak of her popularity with “Trainwreck,” which posted a near identical opening to “Girls Trip” with $30 million. Then there’s “Pitch Perfect” which, while rated PG-13 instead of R, started as a cult hit in 2012 ($115 million cume against a $17 million budget) and then became a blockbuster hit with its May 2015 sequel ($287.5 million against a $29 million budget). Finally, there’s “Bridesmaids,” which started Universal’s hot streak of female comedy with a $288 million haul in 2011.

By placing the film right in the middle of summer, Universal staked its claim on an audience looking for a fresh new comedy and a film that spoke to their own cultural experience. Combined that with a cast, director and writers who know how to make a crowd-pleaser, and you have a film that adds to the already overwhelming evidence that the call for diversity in Hollywood is being supported with moviegoers’ wallets, and that it can help a struggling genre pull itself out of the dumps.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Universal First to $4 Billion at Global Box Office in 2017

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5 Reasons Why 'Dunkirk' Beat Box Office Expectations

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‘Dunkirk’ Fact Check: How Long Could Tom Hardy’s Plane Stay in the Air? http://www.thewrap.com/dunkirk-fact-check-how-long-could-tom-hardys-plane-stay-in-the-air/ http://www.thewrap.com/dunkirk-fact-check-how-long-could-tom-hardys-plane-stay-in-the-air/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 00:15:21 +0000 Brian Welk http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680176 (Spoiler alert: Don’t read this if you haven’t seen “Dunkirk.” Also: Go see “Dunkirk.”)

In filming “Dunkirk,” Christopher Nolan developed special IMAX camera rigs in order to make the movie’s perilous flight sequences look genuine. You’re right with Tom Hardy in the cockpit, and the whole experience feels jarringly real.

But are the feats of heroics in Nolan’s film accurate to the period? Just how long could Hardy’s fighter plane have stayed in the air once it ran out of fuel?

In the film, Hardy engages in a dogfight and finds his fuel gauge has been cracked. He radios to his fellow pilot and scratches in chalk, “50” and “14:30,” as in how many gallons of fuel he has left, and when it will run out.

Many of the planes flown and lost during at the Dunkirk evacuation were the Supermarine Spitfire, a single-seat fighter aircraft used by the Royal Air Force. They burned through fuel much faster when dogfighting than cruising, and Hardy’s character does a lot of fighting.

This point is especially important near the end of the film. Hardy’s plane has completely run out of fuel and his propeller has even stopped turning. He manages to glide around and out of nowhere save the day as more of the soldiers on the beaches are trying to escape. He’s then able to cruise for seemingly miles and even land safely on the beach, only for the enemy soldiers to find him.

Believe it or not, the BBC reported that after the war attempts were made to make Spitfires break the sound barrier. Like Hardy, one pilot was able to successfully glide and navigate his plane down safely after the propeller had broken off completely.

What’s more, a USA Today Q&A with a pilot posed the question of how far a jetliner could glide if the engine quit at 30,000 feet. While it would vary in the wind, the pilot estimated that it could travel for another 100 miles. An older, smaller plane like the Spitfire would cruise at only 20,000 feet, and it’s 78.5 miles from Dover, England to Dunkirk — so even after the Spitfire’s dogfights, the distance it traveled in the film without a propeller was well within the range of possibility.



You’re a hero, Tom Hardy — show us more of that beautiful face of yours. 

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Dunkirk' Fact Check: How Many People Were Actually Rescued?

All 10 Christopher Nolan Movies Ranked, From 'Memento' to 'Dunkirk' (Photos)

French Media Accuses Christopher Nolan's 'Dunkirk' of Historical Inaccuracy

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12 Stars Banned From Other Countries, From Justin Bieber to Harrison Ford (Photos) http://www.thewrap.com/12-stars-banned-other-countries-photos/ http://www.thewrap.com/12-stars-banned-other-countries-photos/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 00:13:47 +0000 Ashley Eady http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1678755 It’s no secret that some public figures do and say crazy things. (Remember Miley Cyrus’ 2013 VMA performance?) While some celebrity behavior gets laughed off, some of it leads to the celebrity in question being banned from entering certain countries. From Harrison Ford to Justin Bieber, here are 12 noteworthy people who have been blacklisted from at least one country.

  1. Justin Bieber (China)
  2. Lady Gaga (China)
  3. Chris Brown (U.K., Australia)
  4. Martha Stewart (U.K.)
  5. Brad Pitt (China)
  6. Martin Scorsese (China)
  7. Miley Cyrus (China)
  8. Alec Baldwin (Philippines)
  9. Harrison Ford (China)
  10. Beyoncé (Malaysia)
  11. Akon (Sri Lanka)
  12. Tyler, the Creator
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http://www.thewrap.com/12-stars-banned-other-countries-photos/feed/ 0 It's no secret that famous people do and say crazy things. While some celebrity behavior gets laughed off, some of it leads to them being banned from entering certain countries. Here are 12 noteworthy folks who have been blacklisted from at least one country.

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It's no secret that famous people do and say crazy things. While some celebrity behavior gets laughed off, some of it leads to them being banned from entering certain countries. Here are 12 noteworthy folks who have been blacklisted from at least one country.

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Justin Bieber (China)
Bieber’s past instances of “bad behavior” got him barred from China in July 2017. The Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture wrote, “In order to maintain order in the Chinese market and purify the Chinese performance environment, it is not suitable to bring in badly behaved entertainers.” Oops, sorry Biebs.

[contextual-link post_id="1678213" title="Also Read" link_title="Justin Bieber Banned From Playing in China Over ‘Bad Behavior’" target=""]

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Justin Bieber (China)
Bieber’s past instances of “bad behavior” got him barred from China in July 2017. The Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture wrote, “In order to maintain order in the Chinese market and purify the Chinese performance environment, it is not suitable to bring in badly behaved entertainers.” Oops, sorry Biebs.

[contextual-link post_id="1678213" title="Also Read" link_title="Justin Bieber Banned From Playing in China Over ‘Bad Behavior’" target=""]

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Lady Gaga (China)
Bieber isn’t the only singer to fall out of favor with the Chinese government. Lady Gaga was blacklisted last year after meeting with the Dalai Lama. China reportedly purged Gaga’s music from streaming services and placed her on a list of hostile foreign forces.

[contextual-link post_id="1100903" title="Also Read" link_title="Lady Gaga Banned From China After Dalai Lama Meeting" target=""]

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Lady Gaga (China)
Bieber isn’t the only singer to fall out of favor with the Chinese government. Lady Gaga was blacklisted last year after meeting with the Dalai Lama. China reportedly purged Gaga’s music from streaming services and placed her on a list of hostile foreign forces.

[contextual-link post_id="1100903" title="Also Read" link_title="Lady Gaga Banned From China After Dalai Lama Meeting" target=""]

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Chris Brown (U.K., Australia)
This hip-hop star’s 2009 domestic violence conviction against then-girlfriend, Rihanna, got him banned from the U.K. in 2011 and from Australia in 2015. Today, Brown is reportedly still banned from both nations.

[contextual-link post_id="604466" title="Also Read" link_title="Chris Brown Wants to Teach Australian Kids About Domestic Violence" target=""]

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Chris Brown (U.K., Australia)
This hip-hop star’s 2009 domestic violence conviction against then-girlfriend, Rihanna, got him banned from the U.K. in 2011 and from Australia in 2015. Today, Brown is reportedly still banned from both nations.

[contextual-link post_id="604466" title="Also Read" link_title="Chris Brown Wants to Teach Australian Kids About Domestic Violence" target=""]

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Martha Stewart (U.K.)
In 2008, the U.K. denied this former television personality a visa after she faced four felony convictions related to insider trading of ImClone stocks.

[contextual-link post_id="495100" title="Also Read" link_title="Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia to Be Sold for $353 Million" target=""]

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Martha Stewart (U.K.)
In 2008, the U.K. denied this former television personality a visa after she faced four felony convictions related to insider trading of ImClone stocks.

[contextual-link post_id="495100" title="Also Read" link_title="Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia to Be Sold for $353 Million" target=""]

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Brad Pitt (China)
Tibet is a sensitive issue in China and the government tends to condemn anyone who promotes sympathy toward the autonomous region or its leader, the Dalai Lama. Such was the case with Brad Pitt for his involvement in “Seven Years in Tibet.”

[contextual-link post_id="95051" title="Also Read" link_title="Insider: China Censors Rejected Brad Pitt’s ‘World War Z’ (Exclusive)" target=""]

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Brad Pitt (China)
Tibet is a sensitive issue in China and the government tends to condemn anyone who promotes sympathy toward the autonomous region or its leader, the Dalai Lama. Such was the case with Brad Pitt for his involvement in “Seven Years in Tibet.”

[contextual-link post_id="95051" title="Also Read" link_title="Insider: China Censors Rejected Brad Pitt’s ‘World War Z’ (Exclusive)" target=""]

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Martin Scorsese (China)
China really doesn’t mess around when it comes to Tibet. Because he directed “Kundun,” a film that gives a “sympathetic account” of the life of the 14th Dalai Lama, Martin Scorsese received a lifelong ban from the country.

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Martin Scorsese (China)
China really doesn’t mess around when it comes to Tibet. Because he directed “Kundun,” a film that gives a “sympathetic account” of the life of the 14th Dalai Lama, Martin Scorsese received a lifelong ban from the country.

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Miley Cyrus (China)
Miley’s cardinal sin in China’s eyes wasn’t fraternizing with the Tibetan spiritual leader; it was racial insensitivity. In 2009, the “We Can’t Stop” singer shared a photo of herself and friends squinting their eyes in a mocking gesture toward people of East Asian descent. That's not funny in any country.

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Miley Cyrus (China)
Miley’s cardinal sin in China’s eyes wasn’t fraternizing with the Tibetan spiritual leader; it was racial insensitivity. In 2009, the “We Can’t Stop” singer shared a photo of herself and friends squinting their eyes in a mocking gesture toward people of East Asian descent. That's not funny in any country.

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Alec Baldwin (Philippines)
In 2009, the "SNL" staple joked with David Letterman about “getting a Filipino mail-order bride” after numerous failed relationships. With that comment, Baldwin also damaged his relationship with the Philippines. The country slapped him with a lifetime ban from entry.

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Alec Baldwin (Philippines)
In 2009, the "SNL" staple joked with David Letterman about “getting a Filipino mail-order bride” after numerous failed relationships. With that comment, Baldwin also damaged his relationship with the Philippines. The country slapped him with a lifetime ban from entry.

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Harrison Ford (China)
The "Star Wars" his actor has been banned from China since the early 1990s. Ford has long been an advocate for Tibetan independence and has openly criticized the Chinese government for human rights violations in the region.

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Harrison Ford (China)
The "Star Wars" his actor has been banned from China since the early 1990s. Ford has long been an advocate for Tibetan independence and has openly criticized the Chinese government for human rights violations in the region.

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Beyoncé (Malaysia)
Even queens can be banned. Beyoncé postponed and eventually canceled a 2007 performance in Malaysia due to complaints from members of the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party that her wardrobe and dance routine were too provocative.

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Beyoncé (Malaysia)
Even queens can be banned. Beyoncé postponed and eventually canceled a 2007 performance in Malaysia due to complaints from members of the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party that her wardrobe and dance routine were too provocative.

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Akon (Sri Lanka)
Sri Lanka banned Akon and David Guetta over the music video for their song, “Sexy Chick,” which caused violent protests in the nation's capital. The majority-Buddhist nation didn’t like seeing scores of people drinking, partying and hooking up in front of a statue of the Buddha. Akon later apologized for the offense.

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Akon (Sri Lanka)
Sri Lanka banned Akon and David Guetta over the music video for their song, “Sexy Chick,” which caused violent protests in the nation's capital. The majority-Buddhist nation didn’t like seeing scores of people drinking, partying and hooking up in front of a statue of the Buddha. Akon later apologized for the offense.

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Tyler, the Creator (U.K.)
In 2015, then-home secretary Theresa May closed the U.K.’s doors to rapper Tyler, the Creator  for the next three to five years over lyrics that the Home Office believed glamorized “violent physical abuse, rape and murder in graphic terms.”

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Tyler, the Creator (U.K.)
In 2015, then-home secretary Theresa May closed the U.K.’s doors to rapper Tyler, the Creator  for the next three to five years over lyrics that the Home Office believed glamorized “violent physical abuse, rape and murder in graphic terms.”

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Chris Brown Files Extortion Lawsuit Over Philippines Incident http://www.thewrap.com/chris-brown-files-extortion-lawsuit-over-philippines-incident/ http://www.thewrap.com/chris-brown-files-extortion-lawsuit-over-philippines-incident/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 00:09:15 +0000 Tim Kenneally http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680236 Chris Brown has filed a lawsuit, saying that he was targeted by an extortion scheme after performing a concert in the Philippines in 2015.

According to the lawsuit, Brown was scheduled to perform at a New Year’s Eve concert in 2014 at Philippines Arena, but couldn’t make it because of a misplaced passport. Brown scheduled a make-up gig in Manila for July 2015, which he did perform — after which the extortion attempt was made, the suit says.

The suit alleges that Brown was scheduled to leave by private plane the day after the concert, but when he attempted to leave his hotel for the airport, “a group of armed personnel prevented him from leaving.”

According to the suit, a man identifying himself as counsel for Magilaya Corp. contacted Brown’s attorney and “threatened to have Plaintiff arrested and sent to jail based on a fraudulent criminal complaint filed … that same day, alleging that Plaintiff had defrauded Magilaya Corp. by not performing on New Year’s Eve in 2014.”

However, the man allegedly told Brown’s attorney he could “make it all go away” if Brown ponied up $300,000 to him and his “associate,” defendant Jose Victor Los Banos Giongco, but that Brown wouldn’t be granted flight clearance unless the money was transferred first.

Brown was able to leave after an immigration attorney retained by the singer’s attorney secured flight clearance, the lawsuit says, but the alleged extortion attempt didn’t end there.

“Defendants, having discovered that Plaintiff independently obtained flight clearance, attempted to extort Plaintiff one last time by taking credit for the flight clearance obtained by Plaintiff’s immigration attorney. Specifically, Defendants sent text messages that they ‘complied with the terms of the agreement,’ ‘gave their consent for Plaintiff to leave’ and instructed Plaintiff to ‘proceed with wiring the funds,'” the suit reads.

“Defendants’ outrageous conduct described herein was intentional, willful, malicious and done with full knowledge of the distress, anxiety, shock, discomfort and annoyance said conduct would cause to Plaintiff,” the lawsuit reads. “Plaintiff is therefore entitled to exemplary damages in a sum which will be sufficient to punish and make an example of Defendants, and each of them.”

Alleging civil extortion and intentional infliction of emotional distress, the suit seeks unspecified damages.

Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.

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‘Insecure’ Star Issa Rae on Premiere’s ‘F—Up’ Sex Scene, Turning Down Post-‘Game of Thrones’ Slot http://www.thewrap.com/insecure-issa-rae-season-2-premiere-sex/ http://www.thewrap.com/insecure-issa-rae-season-2-premiere-sex/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 00:00:59 +0000 Ryan Gajewski http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680112 (Spoiler alert” Please do not read on if you haven’t watched Sunday’s episode of “Insecure”)

Issa is newly single on “Insecure,” but as proven by the final scene of the Season 2 premiere, she’s not necessarily loving it.

The HBO comedy’s Sunday return showed Issa hitting the dating scene after her split from Lawrence (Jay Ellis). But she still clearly wants to reconcile with her ex and the pair finally have sex at the end of the episode — although there’s nothing romantic about it.

“She’s figuring out who she doesn’t want to be,” Issa Rae, the HBO comedy’s creator and star, told TheWrap. “Given all the selfish actions she took in Season 1, she’s realizing, ‘I don’t want to be that kind of person. And I also don’t know that I want to be vulnerable to the dating world — I don’t want to be putting myself out there in a way that’s makes me feel weak.’ And you’re going to see her decide what that means for her.”

Rae also discussed the premiere’s “f—ed up” sex scene, her initial assumption that Sterling K. Brown was joking about guesting on the show and why she told HBO that she didn’t want her show to follow “Game of Thrones” on Sunday nights.

TheWrap: How does Issa change from the premiere’s first scene, where she envisions herself reconciling with Lawrence, to the last scene, where they have sex?
Issa Rae: The first, we just wanted to jump right in, showing that Issa’s trying to move on. Three months have passed since the events of the finale, and I think your friends give you a three-month window to mourn, and then it’s like, “OK, girl, I can’t hear this anymore.” We wanted to start these characters in a place of doing what they’re supposed to be doing. By the end, she hooks up with Lawrence. She’s wanted him back for three months, and now she’s finally got him after two weeks — to not talk to him but connect with him, in her mind. Even though the sex was kind of f–ed-up, we wanted to have a glimmer of hope in her eyes by the end of the episode.

What was it like to film it?
Jay and I are so comfortable around each other now, it was significantly easier than other sex scenes. I have clothes on, for the most part, so it was OK. But sex scenes are always sex scenes — they’re never the most comfortable. We both knew what it was supposed to mean for the two of us — he was very clear about his motivation, and I was clear about mine, and it was a matter of making it happen.

Where do things go from here for the two of them?
They have to get at a level where they’re honest with each other in terms of confronting what happened between them and why it happened, and I think you’re going to see both of them asking those questions as the season progresses and deciding how that informs who they are.

What is this season like for Molly (Yvonne Orji)?
With her storyline, I’m excited to tackle equal pay in the work place, and you’re going to see that play out for her. We love the idea that we’re going to be able to start a conversation around an issue that some many people face and don’t know that they face, and hopefully can drum up the courage to talk about.

How was it to work with Sterling K. Brown and some of the other guest stars this season?
Sterling was awesome — he reached out. I had presented with him at an Independent Spirit event, and in my mind, he was jokingly like, “So when are you going to put me on the show?” And I was like, “Yeah, right, Emmy winner — get out of here.” And then he hit me up on twitter DMs and was like, “Look, I have a hiatus. If you have something for me, let me know.” And I was like, “You were serious?” So I pitched a role to him that we already had, and we were like, “Yeah, he’d be perfect for that.”

We had Lil Rel [Howery] this season as all — we obviously all loved him in “Get Out.” He auditioned to play this particular role, and he’s perfect for it.

What’s the toughest thing about starring on a show that you also executive produce?
Just time. Especially this season, we were just really up against it when we got a sooner return date. I think we were in the second day of our writers’ room anticipating it to air in the fall, and then we got that call from our executives, like, “Hey, how would you guys like to come back in July behind Game of Thrones.” And we were going to do 10 episodes. And at first, we were like, “No.” Like, “This is such an honor — thanks for the faith, guys. But, how? How are we gonna make this happen?” And they were like, “Guys, you should think about this.” And we were like, “We’d be stupid not to take this time slot, and let’s just reduce the number of episodes to eight.” We all liked the number of eight episodes, and came back.

“Insecure” airs Sundays at 10:30 p.m. ET on HBO. 

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Silicon Valley' Star Thomas Middleditch Says TJ Miller's Exit Won't 'Switch the Show'

'Silicon Valley' Chief Won't Return TJ Miller's Fire Over 'For the Best' Exit

'Insecure': Is There Still Hope for Issa and Lawrence?

'Insecure' Star Issa Rae Is 'Bummed' About Show's Emmy Snubs

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Who or What Are the Skrulls, the Villains in ‘Captain Marvel’? http://www.thewrap.com/skrulls-villains-captain-marvel/ http://www.thewrap.com/skrulls-villains-captain-marvel/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 22:50:02 +0000 Phil Hornshaw http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679409 Marvel Studios revealed some key details at San Diego Comic-Con about its first woman-led Marvel Cinematic Universe story, “Captain Marvel,” that has longtime fans intrigued. We know that Brie Larson’s superhero will face a scary band of aliens known as the Skrulls. (Here’s everything else we learned about the movie.)

If you’re not up on your Marvel Comics, though, you could be forgiven for not knowing who or what a Skrull is. Obviously, we’ve seen aliens in Marvel’s cinematic universe before: The Chitauri, who invaded New York with Loki (Tom Hiddleston) in “The Avengers”; and the Kree, blue-skinned aliens who include the genocidal fanatic Ronan The Accuser (Lee Pace), main villain in “Guardians of the Galaxy.”

The Skrulls predate both of those races in the Marvel ​Universe, facing off against lots of Marvel heroes over the years. ​And they’ve shown up on plenty of other Marvel productions, like various “Fantastic Four” cartoons, and the 1990s “X-Men” cartoon. ​​But “Captain Marvel” marks their debut as part of the MCU. So what’s their deal?

Created by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee in 1962, the Skrulls are almost as old as the Marvel Universe itself. They first appeared in “Fantastic Four” #2​ –​ ​and ​the Marvel Universe ​only ​began with “Fantastic Four” #1 in December, 1961​ (Older characters like Namor and Captain America, who debuted in Marvel’s earlier incarnation, Timely Comics, were later imported into Marvel​.)​

The Skrulls are a bit like the Kree in that they have an interstellar empire, located in the Andromeda galaxy. They’re a race of basically human-looking folks, except they have green skin and pointy ears.

The thing that makes Skrulls especially spooky is their ability to change their shapes. They can morph themselves into just about anything that’s roughly the same volume as their bodies (they can get a little smaller or a little bigger than they naturally are), and they use that ability to infiltrate and eventually subjugate other species.

In the Marvel Comics backstory​, long ago the Skrulls​ were experimented on by the Celestials, a race of super-smart and super-powerful aliens who’ve been around for millennia. (Kurt Russell’s Ego of “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” is one such Celestial.) In their experiments on the Skrulls, the Celestials created three groups — one with extreme longevity, one with latent genetic enhancements that would come to fruition as the species aged, and one with extreme genetic diversity. The last group, the “Deviants,” overtook the rest of the species and eliminated the other groups. They’re the unstable shapeshifting guys.

Over the last few million years, the Skrulls have spread through their galaxy with the help of space travel technology, dominating hundreds of other worlds and bringing them into their empire. They’ve also figured out how to genetically modify some of their people.

While ​even average Skrulls can just change shape and mimic other creatures or objects, ​most of them can’t take on those other creatures’ properties. Put another way: If a​ joe sixpack Skrull shapeshifts to look like Spider-Man, that Skrull won’t have Spider-Man’s powers. But the empire is able to create Warrior Skrulls or Super-Skrulls that do have the ability to take on someone else’s powers. That makes them pretty dangerous.

With the Skrulls popping up in “Captain Marvel,” and that movie taking place before 2008’s “Iron Man,” it seems likely that a story of a secret aliens invasion of Earth could be in the offing. Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury is confirmed to be in the movie as well, and rooting out Skrulls hidden on Earth would definitely be a job for S.H.I.E.L.D.​ (It also makes for a nice callback to the end of “Iron Man,” when Fury told Tony Stark “Think you’re the only superhero​ in the world?”)

The Skrulls also have a long history of war with the Kree, and Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige mentioned at Comic-Con that there are lots of comics dealing with the Kree-Skrull war that the movies haven’t tapped yet. So it seems that “Captain Marvel” might be contending with even more of the larger Marvel universe than we’ve ever seen before.

Related stories from TheWrap:

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10 Coolest Things We Learned at Marvel Open House, From Captain Marvel Costume to R Rating Plans

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Chester Bennington Remembered by Linkin Park Bandmate Mike Shinoda in Epic Throwback Photo http://www.thewrap.com/chester-bennington-remembered-by-linkin-park-bandmate-mike-shinoda-with-epic-throwback-photo/ http://www.thewrap.com/chester-bennington-remembered-by-linkin-park-bandmate-mike-shinoda-with-epic-throwback-photo/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 22:41:53 +0000 Tim Kenneally http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680166

Mike Shinoda isn’t waiting until Throwback Thursday to honor his deceased bandmate Chester Bennington.

The Linkin Park musician took to Instagram on Monday to honor Bennington via a photo from the group’s nascent days, before they were even known as Linkin Park.

“1997 or 1998 … I think this was the first photo we ever took together,” Shinoda wrote in a caption accompanying the photo. “We had just told Chester that we wanted him to join the band. He said he was ready to move out from Arizona to L.A. We went to a pizza place near UCLA to hang out and talk about what to do next.”

The musician continued, “The band was called Xero at the time, and we probably had less than a half a dozen songs. No flame tattoos yet, no red hair yet, most of us were still in college.”

Bennington was found dead last week in his Southern California home, the coroner’s office later determined the cause of death to be hanging. The musician was found on what would have been the 53rd birthday of his friend, Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell, who also took his own life by hanging in May.

News of Bennington’s death followed just hours after Linkin Park released their latest music video, “Talking to Myself.”

On Monday, Linkin Park issued a letter addressed to Bennington regarding his death.

“Our hearts are broken. The shockwaves of grief and denial are still sweeping through our family as we come to grips with what has happened,” the group said.

“Talking with you about the years ahead together, your excitement was infectious,” the letter continued. “Your absence leaves a void that can never be filled-a boisterous, funny, ambitious, creative, kind, generous voice in the room is missing. We’re trying to remind ourselves that the demons who took you away from us were always part of the deal.”

Related stories from TheWrap:

Linkin Park Pens Heartfelt Letter to Chester Bennington: 'You Touched So Many Lives'

Linkin Park Cancels Tour After Singer Chester Bennington's Suicide

Linkin Park Singer Chester Bennington Died of Hanging, Coroner Confirms

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‘Game of Thrones’ 101: What Is Casterly Rock? http://www.thewrap.com/game-of-thrones-101-casterly-rock/ http://www.thewrap.com/game-of-thrones-101-casterly-rock/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 22:37:20 +0000 Phil Hornshaw http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680108 (Spoiler alert: Please don’t read on if you haven’t watched Sunday’s episode of “Game of Thrones”)

Although it’s incredibly important to the politics of “Game of Thrones,” there’s a major location we have yet to see in the HBO show: Casterly Rock.

The seat of House Lannister, Casterly Rock was referred to by Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) as the true seat of power in Westeros. The Lannister homestead is the site of Lannister wealth, and House Lannister has been lending all kinds of money to King’s Landing for years. With Cersei crowned queen in Season 6, Lannisters effectively control the continent, even if they have trouble consolidating their power.

In Season 7, Tyrion laid out a plan to send Daenerys’ forces to attack Casterly Rock and capture it from the Lannisters, cutting off a key component of their empire. But what makes Casterly Rock important, and more importantly, where is it?

Casterly Rock is located on the western shore of Westeros, due west and a little north of Dragonstone. The castle is literally built on a big rock that overlooks the Sunset Sea. The castle is, also literally, a gold mine — one of the best-producing mines in the country, in fact. That gold mine is where the Lannisters get all their money from.

Legend has it that Casterly Rock was previously held by House Casterly thousands of years ago, long before the conquering of the Seven Kingdoms by the Targaryen dynasty. Lann the Clever, one of the legendary figures during the Age of Heroes thousands of years ago, managed to swindle House Casterly into giving him the house, so the stories go. Accounts vary on how exactly he did that, but he’s the guy House Lannister claims to descend from.

Like Winterfell in the North, Casterly Rock is the location from which the Warden of the West governs the entire region. That warden was Lord Tywin Lannister until he was killed. (There are two other wardens: the Warden of the East has traditionally been the leader of House Arryn, Lord Promentory and Defender of the Vale, and the Warden of the South has traditionally been the leader of House Tyrell in Highgarden.)

The location of Casterly Rock on the western coast of Westeros is important in Season 7. Part of the war plan Tyrion laid out in Episode 2, “Stormborn,” was to capture Casterly Rock from Cersei to undercut her power in King’s Landing. The plan is to send the Unsullied to attack the Rock and capture it — but the distance between Casterly Rock and Daenerys’ base on Dragonstone on the eastern coast of Westeros is significant, the width of the entire continent. (Here’s what you need to know about Dragonstone.)

The plan Tyrion explains has the Unsullied sailing for Casterly Rock to attack it, rather than marching over land, which would take them all the way around the southern end of Westeros. That long trip is presumably safer and maybe even be quicker than an overland march, but Casterly Rock is still pretty far way, and it’ll probably take days or weeks for the Unsullied to arrive.

Taking Casterly Rock would offer Daenerys the Lannisters’ gold, while cutting off at least some of Cersei’s ability to pay the people who work for her family. Since so much Lannister power derives from their wealth, that could be a pretty powerful blow to the Cersei’s power as the war for the Iron Throne ramps up.

“Game of Thrones” airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on HBO.

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‘The Keepers': Here’s What Has Happened Since the Netflix Series Debuted http://www.thewrap.com/the-keepers-what-has-happened-since-the-netflix-series-debuted/ http://www.thewrap.com/the-keepers-what-has-happened-since-the-netflix-series-debuted/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 22:26:55 +0000 Beatrice Verhoeven http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680050 Netflix’s “The Keepers” debuted two months ago, and since then, filmmaker Ryan White has seen positive developments in the case: More victims have spoken out and police are investigating further into Father Joseph Maskell’s past life.

“I am seeing that ‘The Keepers’ is having a positive impact, not just in the sense that more victims have come forward but it is also having a positive impact in showing people that they aren’t alone and that it’s possible to move forward and confront your painful past,” White told TheWrap during a recent interview.

White said that many new victims have come out of the woodwork since the series was released: “A lot of people watched the series and realized that they weren’t the only ones and now have the courage to talk about it. Hopefully, it will lead to a lot of healing.”

There has also been a lot of movement in terms of investigating Maskell. “The Keepers” explores the murder of Sister Catherine Cesnik, who disappeared in November 1969 and whose body was discovered in January of 1970. The documentary investigates whether Maskell had Sister Cathy killed because she was about to expose him and others for sexual abusing teenage students at Archbishop Keough High School. Maskell died in 2001, and until his death, he had denied the allegations.

According to CNN, Father Maskell’s body was exhumed in February to see whether his DNA matched the DNA from the murder scene. Two days before “The Keepers” was released, Baltimore County Police found that the DNA profile did not match.

“No one’s prevailing theory was that his DNA would be there,” White added, referring to many people’s idea that Maskell ordered the murder but himself did not orchestrate it. “It’s a huge outward sign that they are taking Maskell seriously as a suspect now, and it definitely begs the question why these tests weren’t done when he was alive and Jean Wehner [Jane Doe] was coming forward. He could’ve been arrested.”

According to White, the documentary prompted a lot of digging into Maskell’s past, specifically when he relocated to Ireland. According to the Baltimore Sun, Maskell worked as a psychologist amid his sexual abuse allegations in the United States. Whether he assessed any children or teens during his time in Ireland could not yet be determined by the agency doing the review.

“We were only concentrating in our documentary for the most part on certain parts of Maskell’s character but he had a long career before and after his time at Keough,” White said. “A predator doesn’t stop abusing so it’s been a sad truth that people from other sides of his career — and from Keough — have come out of the woodwork.”

Moreover, a few days after the documentary was released, the Baltimore Police Department launched an online form for people to report sexual offenses related to the docuseries.

“We have been contacted by victims from the past who want to report the sex offenses that occurred to them,” the department wrote on its Facebook page.

In July, a Change.org petition was launched and has since garnered over 42,000 signatures asking the Archdiocese of Baltimore to release information they have on Maskell. White told TheWrap he had asked for these documents during the making of the documentary, and is “dubious” whether they would even release them now.

Lastly, a few weeks before the series came out, Maryland extended the statute of limitations for victims of childhood sexual abuse, on which the senate voted unanimously. The previous statute of limitations provided that child sex abuse victims could only sue until age 25 — now, they can sue until the age of 38.

“It might be people doing the right thing for the wrong reasons but it’s good news for sexual abuse victims,” White added.

However, the major developments in the case since the documentary’s debut won’t change White’s mind about making a second season. Previously, he had said he wouldn’t want to make a follow-up season given how “painful” the process was for all the people involved.

“I’m still standing behind that, but I’m not going to say never,” White said about a second season. “There is a lot of information coming to us right now and there could be certain developments that I would document. But, at the moment, I’m not dead set on that. I’m still preoccupied with promoting the series and to make sure it has the largest impact that it can have. I’m still very happy where it ended. The series will end up shaking the branches in Baltimore and nationwide to have more information coming out that could lead to justice and murder being solved.”

Related stories from TheWrap:

'The Keepers': Baltimore Archdiocese Says It Has Paid More Than $470,000 in Settlements to Maskell Accusers

'The Keepers': What's Behind the Name of the Netflix Documentary Series?

'The Keepers': Sister Cathy's Medical Examiner Also Worked on JFK, JonBenet Ramsey Cases

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‘American Horror Story’ Alum James Cromwell Arrested During SeaWorld Protest http://www.thewrap.com/american-horror-story-alum-james-cromwell-arrested-during-seaworld-protest/ http://www.thewrap.com/american-horror-story-alum-james-cromwell-arrested-during-seaworld-protest/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 22:24:11 +0000 Tim Kenneally http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680131 At this rate, James Cromwell‘s rap sheet is going to rival his list of screen credits before too long.

The “American Horror Story” alum was arrested on Monday while leading PETA supporters in an attempted takeover of the “Orca Encounter” show at SeaWorld in San Diego, the animal-rights organization said Monday.

According to PETA, Cromwell was handcuffed and taken into custody after brandishing a megaphone while wearing a PETA shirt proclaiming “SeaWorld Sucks” while rallying protesters and “informing the audience about the abusement [sic] park’s history of premature orca deaths and marine mammal suffering.

“Orcas deserve a full life in the ocean, not a life sentence of swimming endless circles until they drop dead from disease,” Cromwell said of the protest. “My friends at PETA and I want SeaWorld to move these intelligent animals to seaside sanctuaries without delay.”

Cromwell is almost becoming as well known for his activism as he is for his acting. In June, the actor was sentenced to to a week in jail for refusing to pay fines stemming from the 2015 protest of a natural-gas power plant in Wawayanda, New York.

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Sony Pictures TV Names Jeff Frost President, Chris Parnell and Jason Clodfelter Co-Presidents http://www.thewrap.com/sony-pictures-tv-jeff-frost-president/ http://www.thewrap.com/sony-pictures-tv-jeff-frost-president/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 21:56:28 +0000 Ryan Gajewski http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680138 Sony Pictures Entertainment has named Jeff Frost as president of Sony Pictures Television Studios (SPT), the company announced on Monday. Chris Parnell and Jason Clodfelter have been selected as co-presidents.

Together, the three individuals will comprise a new “Office of the President” to oversee all domestic production and programming. This follows Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg stepping down as SPT presidents last month to head for Apple.

Frost was previously executive vice president of U.S. business affairs for SPT. He joined Sony in 2008 from ABC Studios, where he was senior vice president of business affairs for traditional production and digital media.

Parnell and Clodfelter joined SPT in 2003 and 2006, respectively. They both served as executive vice president of U.S. drama development and programming at SPT.

“Jeff, Chris and Jason are the perfect team to run our U.S. television business,” Sony Pictures Entertainment chairman and CEO Tony Vinciquerra said in a statement Monday. “Over the last several weeks, I have been able to see firsthand the strong leadership qualities possessed by Jeff, Chris and Jason, the high energy and vitality of everyone in their groups and throughout SPT, and the outstanding collaboration that exists between them all.”

Frost said in a statement that he is “thrilled” about his new role and is “honored to work with some of the most talented and creative individuals and teams in the business.”

“I am particularly excited about working with Chris and Jason,” he continued. “The landscape of our business continues to rapidly evolve, and SPT is in an ideal position to take advantage of industry shifts due to our diversity of programming and ability to air across a broad array of broadcast, cable and digital platforms. We have had great success over the past 10 years, and I look forward to working with the team to capitalize on the opportunities that lie ahead.”

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‘Deadpool,’ ‘Terminator Genisys’ Used Stolen Effects Technology, New Lawsuits Claim http://www.thewrap.com/deadpool-terminator-genisys-used-stolen-effects-technology-new-lawsuits-claim/ http://www.thewrap.com/deadpool-terminator-genisys-used-stolen-effects-technology-new-lawsuits-claim/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 21:48:25 +0000 Tim Kenneally http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680120 “Deadpool” and “Terminator Genisys” used stolen technology to create their big-screen razzle-dazzle, according to new lawsuits filed by visual-effects company Rearden.

In complaints filed against Paramount Pictures and 20th Century Fox in federal court in California on Monday, Rearden claims that 2015’s “Terminator Genisys” and 2016’s “Deadpool,” among other films, employed a technology called MOVA Contour Reality Capture, which according to the suits was invented — and stolen from — Rearden.

The suit against Fox similarly claims that the MOVA technology was used without authorization from Rearden to create the face of Colossus for “Deadpool.”

According to the suit against Paramount, the MOVA technology was used to re-create Arnold Schwarzenegger’s face and expressions at age 37, to match Schwarzenegger’s visage from the 1984 film “The Terminator.”

“Mr. Schwarzenegger’s face and expressions at age 37 are so famously known and recognizable, there was no margin for error: the CG face had to look and move exactly as it did at age 37,” the suit reads. “Paramount turned to an innovative, soon-to-be Oscar-winning, Visual Effects (“VFX”) technology called MOVA Contour Reality Capture, which carried every human subtlety of age-67 Mr. Schwarzenegger’s facial performance through to the face of the age-37 CG character. The result was a CG face widely acclaimed to look and move exactly like Mr. Schwarzenegger’s face at age 37.”

Unfortunately, the suit says, despite contracting with Rearden for the MOVA technology to make the 2008 film “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” and 2011’s “Transformers: Dark of the Moon,” Paramount chose to employ an entity that stole the technology from Rearden when it came to making 2015’s “Terminator Genisys.”

Last week, Rearden leveled similar claims against Disney, alleging in a lawsuit that “Beauty and the Beast,” “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Avengers: Age of Ultron” made use of its stolen MOVA technology.

As with the previous suit, Rearden is seeking unspecified damages against Fox and Paramount in the new complaints. Also like the Disney suit, the company is seeking injunctions preventing Fox from “reproducing, distributing, performing or displaying, or authorizing” the allegedly infringing films without Rearden’s authorization.

TheWrap has reached out to Fox and Paramount for comment.

Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.

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'Deadpool 2:' Josh Brolin Shares Photo of Himself in Cable Makeup

'Deadpool 2' Adds 'Hunt for the Wilderpeople' Breakout Julian Dennison

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Netflix Comings and Goings in August, From ‘the Defenders’ to ‘Death Note’ http://www.thewrap.com/netflix-coming-and-going-in-august-from-the-defenders-to-death-note/ http://www.thewrap.com/netflix-coming-and-going-in-august-from-the-defenders-to-death-note/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 21:40:04 +0000 Ashley Boucher http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680049 Enter the dog days of summer with a revved-up Netflix line-up. Anticipated Netflix Original programming like “Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later” and “Marvel’s The Defenders” will arrive on Aug. 4 and 18, respectively.

“The Defenders” was previewed at San Diego Comic-Con and deemed a Hall H winner by TheWrap staff. We’ll see all of the Marvel heroes featured in shows on Netflix, like Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), Daredevil (Charlie Cox), Luke Cage (Mike Colter) and Iron Fist (Finn Jones).

Atypical” is another Netflix Original, out on Aug. 11, about an 18-year-old on the autism spectrum who wants to start dating. “Death Note,” also featured at Comic-Con, is out Aug. 25. The film is based off a Japanese manga series about a boy who finds a mystical notebook that has the power to kill anyone whose name is written in it.

Some series to binge before they’re gone: “Justice League” and “Justice League: Unlimited seasons 1-2, takes off Aug. 1; “American Dad” seasons 1-4, leaving Aug. 15; “Revenge” seasons 1-4, gone Aug. 28; and “The League” seasons 1-7, out Aug. 31.

See below for the comprehensive list of what’s coming and leaving the streaming platform next month.

Coming Aug. 1

A Cinderella Story
Bad Santa
Cloud Atlas
Crematorium: Season 1
Everyone’s Hero
Funny Games (US)
Innerspace
Jackie Brown
Lord of War
Maz Jobrani: Immigrant —  NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Nola Circus
Opening Night
Practical Magic
Sleepy Hollow
Small Soldiers
Surviving Escobar – Alias JJ: Season 1 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
The Addams Family
The Astronaut’s Wife
The Bomb
The Hollywood Masters: Season 1

The Last Mimzy
The Matrix
The Matrix Reloaded
The Matrix Revolutions
The Number 23
The Royal House of Windsor: Season 1
The Truth About Alcohol
The Wedding Party
Tie The Knot
Who Gets the Dog?
Wild Wild West

Coming Aug. 2

Jab We Met
The Founder

Coming Aug. 3

Sing
The Invisible Guardian

Coming Aug. 4

Icarus — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Voltron: Legendary Defender: Season 3 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later: Season 1 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL

Coming Aug. 5

Holes

Coming Aug. 8

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Season 7 Episodes 1-13

Coming Aug. 9

Black Site Delta

Coming Aug. 10

Diary of an Exorcist – Zero

Coming Aug. 11

Atypical: Season 1 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Home: Adventures with Tip & Oh: Season 3 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Naked — NETFLIX ORIGINAL FILM
True and The Rainbow Kingdom: Season 1 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
White Gold — NETFLIX ORIGINAL

Coming Aug. 13

Arthur and the Invisibles
Hot Property
Mission Control: The Unsung Heroes of Apollo

Coming Aug. 14

The Outcasts
Urban Hymn

Coming Aug. 15

Barbeque

Brad Paisley’s Comedy Rodeo – NETFLIX ORIGINAL
21
A New Economy
All These Sleepless Nights
Donald Cried
Murderous Affair: Season 1
My Ex-Ex
The Sweet Life

Coming Aug. 16

Gold

Coming Aug. 18

Dinotrux: Season 5 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Glitter Force Doki Doki: Season 1 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
I Am Sam
Marvel’s The Defenders: Season 1 —  NETFLIX ORIGINAL
What Happened to Monday —  NETFLIX ORIGINAL FILM

Coming Aug. 19

Hide and Seek

Coming Aug. 20

Camera Store

Coming Aug. 21

AWOL
Bad Rap
Beautiful Creatures
Gomorrah: Season 2
Unacknowledged

Coming Aug. 22

Lynne Koplitz: Hormonal Beast — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Sadie’s Last Days on Earth

Coming Aug. 23

Feel Rich

Coming Aug. 25

Disjointed: Part 1 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Death Note — NETFLIX ORIGINAL FILM
DreamWorks Dragons: Race to the Edge: Season 5 — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
Once Upon a Time: Season 6

Coming Aug. 29

Bring It On: Worldwide #Cheersmack
Ryan Hamilton: Happy Face — NETFLIX ORIGINAL
The Good Place: Season 1

Coming Aug. 31

Be Afraid

LAST CALL

Leaving Aug. 1

10 Things I Hate About You
Justice League Unlimited: Season 1
Justice League Unlimited: Season 2
Justice League: Season 1
Justice League: Season 2

Babe
Babe Winkelman’s Outdoor Secrets: 2014: Quarter 4
Babe: Pig in the City
Beneath the Helmet
Black Widow
Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry
Electric Slide
Elizabethtown
From the Terrace
From Time to Time
Goodbye World
Horsemen
Hunter X Hunter : Season 1
Hunter X Hunter : Season 2
Hunter X Hunter : Season 3
Hunter X Hunter : Season 4
Hunter X Hunter : Season 5
Josef Fritzl: Story of a Monster
Malibu’s Most Wanted
Prefontaine
Russell Brand: End the Drugs War
Russell Brand: From Addiction to Recovery
Teacher’s Pet
The Delivery Man: Season 1
The Diabolical
The Heavy Water War: Season 1
The Hunt: Season 1
The Little Engine That Could
The Lizzie McGuire Movie
The Verdict
Young Justice: Season 1
Young Justice: Season 2
Young@Heart
Zack and Miri Make a Porno

Leaving Aug. 4

Superbad

Leaving Aug. 5

Pelican Dreams
Personal Gold: An Underdog Story

Leaving Aug. 6

Human Capital
The Spoils of Babylon: Season 1

Leaving Aug. 9

The Five Venoms

Leaving Aug. 10

Dope

Leaving Aug. 11

Four Blood Moons
Jesus People: The Movie
Patch Town
Two Days, One Night

Leaving Aug. 14

Drones
Food Matters

Leaving Aug. 15

American Dad!: Season 1
American Dad!: Season 2
American Dad!: Season 3
American Dad!: Season 4

To Kill a Mockingbird
Changing Seas: Season 3
Changing Seas: Season 4
Changing Seas: Season 5
Changing Seas: Season 6
Close Quarter Battle: Season 1
The New Frontier: Season 1
Top 10 Secrets and Mysteries: Season 1

Leaving Aug. 13

The Summer of Sangaile

Leaving Aug. 24

Gun Woman

Leaving Aug. 25

October Gale
Paratodos
The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq

Leaving Aug. 28

Revenge: Season 1
Revenge: Season 2
Revenge: Season 3
Revenge: Season 4

Leaving Aug. 30

The League: Season 1
The League: Season 2
The League: Season 3
The League: Season 4
The League: Season 5
The League: Season 6
The League: Season 7

Leaving Aug. 31

Space Warriors

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We Saw 4 Minutes of Netflix's 'The Punisher,' and He Killed 3 People

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Netflix Shares Surge to All-Time High After Stellar Q2 Earnings

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Henry Cavill’s Mustache Hinders ‘Justice League’ Reshoots http://www.thewrap.com/henry-cavill-mustache-hinders-justice-league-reshoots/ http://www.thewrap.com/henry-cavill-mustache-hinders-justice-league-reshoots/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 21:35:34 +0000 Matt Donnelly http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679908

Henry Cavill’s mustache has escalated the budget for Warner Bros.’ “Justice League” and thrown stars’ schedules into conflict, TheWrap has learned — all because rival studio Paramount won’t let him shave it while he also shoots the new “Mission: Impossible” film.

Pre-scheduled reshoots have run longer that planned, multiple individuals with knowledge of the situation said, ratcheting up stress and costs on the superhero orgy as it races to make a November release date.

Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Ezra Miller, Ray Fisher and Cavill have been bouncing back and forth from soundstages in Los Angeles to locations in London, pulling them from existing commitments and adding to the studio’s travel expenses, one of the insiders said.



The problem is that Superman’s clean-shaven look is as enduring as his red cape — and Cavill has grown facial hair for the sixth installment of Paramount’s “Mission: Impossible” franchise. After learning of the “Justice League” reshoot commitments,  distributor Paramount forbade Cavill from shaving a mustache he had grown for the spy film, several people close to the scuffle said.

So the ‘stache — see it in its rugged glory here — will be digitally removed by Warner Bros. in post-production, at Warner Bros.’ expense. Superman’s clean-cut looks remains intact and convincing on screen, one insider said.

Representatives for Warner Bros. and Paramount Pictures declined to comment on the matter, mustache or otherwise.

Miller is also filming the Warner Bros. fantasy sequel to “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” with Jude Law. Affleck is a little less busy these days, having just dropped out of the Netflix film “Triple Frontier.”

For a billion-dollar franchise that combines the allure of characters like Batman, Superman and queen of the summer Wonder Woman, additional filming is to be expected. In fact, it was long baked into the production schedule but not to its current extent, the first individual said.

Production experienced upheaval at the start of summer over the shocking exit of director Zach Synder, following the death of his daughter. “Avengers” helmer Joss Whedon has stepped in to take the film across the finish line.

Snyder and Whedon had been working together for more than a month on the script before the former’s departure was announced, TheWrap previously reported. The collaboration serves as Whedon’s entrance into the DC extended universe — and he’s also signed on to direct a standalone “Batgirl” film.

News of the reshoots was first reported by Variety.

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Wonder Woman' Becomes Top-Grossing Summer Film as Warner Bros. Crosses $1 Billion Domestically

Warner Bros Unleashes New 'Justice League' Comic-Con Poster

Warner Bros Dates Two DC Films for 2020, Another Animated Title for Next Year

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Is Mobile Virtual Reality Ready for Its Closeup? http://www.thewrap.com/mobile-virtual-reality-ready-for-its-closeup/ http://www.thewrap.com/mobile-virtual-reality-ready-for-its-closeup/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 21:22:47 +0000 Matt Pressberg http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1674008 Virtual reality may well be the next big thing, but only if it gets a lot smaller. Many of the brightest minds in the fast-growing technology say the easiest path to making VR mainstream — easily accessible and portable headsets — is to take advantage of the basic technology we already carry with us: our phones.

With a major improvement in technological quality — and a push from the deep-pocketed likes of Google and Facebook — mobile VR headsets are starting to catch up to expensive, wired PC-based rigs like Facebook’s Oculus and HTC’s Vive.

“How will people discover VR?” Clint Kisker, the president and co-founder of Madison Wells Media, a firm that produces and distributes film, TV, virtual and augmented reality, live events and digital video, told TheWrap. “You have to start from the logical places. There are 300 million-plus iOS [the iPhone and iPad’s operating system] devices in the world.”

One of the stalwart products of this year’s CES Asia show was the Pico Neo DKS headset. It uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 820 processor — the same chip that powers some of the world’s most popular Android smartphones like Samsung’s Galaxy 7 and the HTC 10 — to deliver sharpness and smoothness that comes as close to Oculus and Vive.

Apple and Google are also making their own software much more VR-ready, while Facebook is working on a standalone mobile headset.

Up until now, there just aren’t that many people willing to spend thousands of dollars on a headset and high-end gaming PC, especially with the limited amount of professional quality VR content out there. And having essentially a rubber leash can provide an unwelcome jolt when exploring an immersive experience.

“The Vive is awesome and works very well,” Cosmo Scharf, the co-founder and chief experience officer of VR animation company Mindshow, told TheWrap. “But we talk to people, and the prospect of having to buy a $1,000 PC and set up this stuff in your apartment — it’s daunting.”

But mobile-based VR might be better suited to transform the technology from a niche novelty to something most of us consume — and even use to create.

At this point, choosing mobile VR means sacrificing computing power, a tough sell to companies that want to use the best tools. But not so long ago watching a video or browsing the web on a cellphone was an excruciating process. Then the iPhone arrived.

“Right now there’s this gap between the quality and interactivity of desktop VR versus the portability and affordability of mobile VR,” Scharf said. “Both have these great pros and cons. The company that’s able to bridge the gap and create an all-in-one product which has the best of both worlds at a reasonable price — that will create a technology that everyone can afford and wants to own.”

Mindshow, which allows anyone to strap on a Vive headset and hand controls and almost immediately jump into a VR cartoon, is expressly user-friendly — TheWrap was even able to act out a short part as a fish-man arguing with his wife at a bar after just a couple minutes of instruction.

But the level of technology and computing power that makes Mindshow so impressive still hasn’t arrived in mobile form.

Still, studios and production houses are keenly aware of the limits of PC-based VR even as they invest in new content for fear of being left out of what could be an entirely new, multibillion-dollar business.

And many see mobile VR as a way to bridge the gap to make new VR experiences more mainstream and grown the entire market.

“I’m a big believer in mobile VR,” Rick Rey, co-president of STXsurreal, the independent studio’s in-house virtual reality business, told TheWrap. “It’s going to usher in a whole new wave of adoption.”

Truly immersive virtual reality still requires more computing power than AR, but Apple and other phone manufacturers are embracing it, too — and it’s showing up in new products.

 



 

At last month’s VidCon, Google rolled out a new creator-friendly VR platform, 180VR, which lowers the technical bar to producing virtual reality content by focusing on what’s in front of the camera with an almost point-and-shoot level of simplicity.

Google also introduced its Daydream VR platform late last year, with support built in to the latest version of its Android operating system, only requiring a $79 Daydream View headset in addition to a cell phone to immediately jump into immersive virtual reality. (It’s the equipment that STXsurreal’s Rey says he’s most excited about.)

And Oculus owner Facebook is working on a standalone mobile VR headset reported to cost about $200.

“The mobile experience has been getting better every year,” Han Jin, the CEO and co-founder of VR camera manufacturer LucidCam, told TheWrap. “Starting with the first Samsung Gear VR which was so pixelated, the experience has improved drastically. And with phones getting 4K screens it will continue to improve.”

Still, the limited processing power of smartphones remains a chokepoint. “Right now, mobile VR is sort of cruising along at a bit of a plateau,” said John Hamilton, a former movie producer and distributor who is the CEO and founder of VR firm UNLTD. “We need a couple technological shifts.”

Future rigs are likely to be wireless and work through Bluetooth and Wi-Fi,  Hamilton said, which will allow manufacturers to keep the heavy-duty computing power on the shelf — or in the cloud — and not strapped to users’ faces.

But as mobile VR headsets proliferate, the future of content could also become more democratized. After all, readily available mobile video — really the iPhone — opened the floodgates for user-generated content and turned YouTube into a disruptive entertainment force.

It might be virtual reality from the people that brings mobile VR to the people.

“User-generated content is the next driver of adoption,” Jin said.

Mindshow is betting on that transition with a clip show called “Mindshow Nuze” that integrates contributions from the Mindshow community with cartoons from the company’s creators.

Creating virtual reality cartoons may sound complicated, but so was shooting a simple video until the smartphone revolution made everyone an auteur.

“We have ideas of this awesome future where you can express yourself and get your ideas out and visualize your imagination in this way,” Scharf said.

TheWrap’s Special Report on Virtual Reality:

Why Hollywood Studios are Slow to Embrace Virtual Reality
Hollywood’s Virtual Reality Push: How All 6 Major Studios Stack Up
15 Best VR Experiences So Far, From ‘Hello Mars’ to ‘Gnomes & Goblins’

Related stories from TheWrap:

Virtual Reality Needs 'Breadth' to Go Mainstream, Argues VR CEO

Hollywood's Virtual Reality Push: How All 6 Major Studios Stack Up

Why Hollywood Studios Are Slow to Embrace Virtual Reality

15 Best Virtual Reality Experiences So Far, From 'Hello Mars' to 'Gnomes & Goblins' (Photos)

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‘Midnight, Texas’ Premiere Sneak Peek: Game Mishap Brings ‘Unwelcome’ Visitors (Exclusive Video) http://www.thewrap.com/midnight-texas-premiere-unwelcome-visitors/ http://www.thewrap.com/midnight-texas-premiere-unwelcome-visitors/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 21:15:11 +0000 Ryan Gajewski http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680030

There’s clearly such a thing as too many angry spirits, as seen in the series premiere of NBC’s “Midnight, Texas.”

An exclusive sneak peek of Monday’s episode proves why certain board games should only be played under close supervision. “Midnight, Texas” is based on Charlaine Harris’ book series of the same name.

“What is it you need to tell me?” lead character Manfred Bernardo (Francois Arnaud) asks a spooky specter during a seance.

Suddenly, the ghost invites a few more friends along for the party, and they begin to threaten Manfred.

“You’re all unwelcome in my…” the psychic trails off. He then exclaims, “This is my home! You have no right.”

Check out the frightening clip above from the show that also stars Dylan Bruce, Parisa Fitz-Henley, Arielle Kebbel, Jason Lewis and Sarah Ramos.

“Midnight, Texas” premieres Monday at 10 p.m. ET on NBC. 

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Justin Bieber Fans Cry After Singer Cancels Remaining Tour Dates http://www.thewrap.com/justin-bieber-fans-cry-after-singer-cancels-remaining-tour-dates/ http://www.thewrap.com/justin-bieber-fans-cry-after-singer-cancels-remaining-tour-dates/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 21:08:06 +0000 Reid Nakamura http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680063 Justin Bieber canceled the rest of his world tour on Monday with little explanation. The surprise announcement has left his fans reeling.

Ticket-holders will be refunded for the remaining dates, but that consolation falls short for the Bieber fans who had been waiting for their chance to see him live. After the announcement was made that the pop star would not be performing the last few scheduled shows of his “Purpose” world tour, fans took to Twitter to express their despair in gif form.

No reason for the decision to cancel the tour was given beyond the fact that it was “due to unforeseen circumstances.”

“Justin loves his fans and hates to disappoint them,” the singer’s camp said in a statement. “He thanks his fans for the incredible experience of the Purpose World Tour over last 18 months.”

Before the cancellation, Bieber was scheduled to play 15 more shows in North American and Asia through October. The more than 150 stops of the 18-month stadium tour had earned over $250 million.

See some of the reactions below:

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Jason Bateman’s ‘Ozark': 9 Most Disturbing Moments of Show You Have to Watch Now http://www.thewrap.com/ozark-netflix-jason-bateman-laura-linney-craziest-disturbing-binge-watch/ http://www.thewrap.com/ozark-netflix-jason-bateman-laura-linney-craziest-disturbing-binge-watch/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 21:07:12 +0000 Meriah Doty http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680072 Hurry up. You still have a shot at being an early adopter of the best new series on Netflix — one that, so far, is woefully underrated given its darkly addictive lure.

Jason Bateman (who also executive produces and directed four episodes) stars as the brainy Marty Byrde, a financial adviser in Chicago who finds himself neck-deep in a money laundering operation for the Mexican drug cartel. Laura Linney plays his wife, Wendy, whose charm and savvy helps get Marty and their family out of more than a few potentially deadly situations.

The couple flee to the Missouri Ozarks on a last-chance scheme to save themselves — and their son and daughter — from painful deaths at the hands of of Del (Esai Morales), Byrde’s cartel boss.

Each episode plunges deeper and deeper into gut-wrenching insanity as the Byrdes miraculously, narrowly escape demise at every turn.

“Ozark” dropped on Netflix last week, and yes, we watched all 10 episodes, which run roughly an hour each, give or take.

Don’t let tepid reviews fool you. “Ozark” currently has a 66 percent on Rotten Tomatoes — but lest we forget, “Breaking Bad,” which “Ozark” is being compared to, wasn’t an instant critical or fan hit either.

We dare you to watch the first three episodes and not get completely hooked.

Here are the nine craziest and most disturbing moments from the first season, which you may want to check out only once you’ve viewed it (huge spoiler alert!):

1. Co-worker killings
Without totally spoiling it, let’s just say Marty has to endure the sight of his colleagues being murdered right before his eyes, and more than once.

2. Eyeballs
They come up twice — no pun intended — in the season. And yes, they’re the human variety, the ones the cartel has gouged out.

3. Bad dreams
Marty and Wendy’s daughter, Charlotte Byrde (Sofia Hublitz) struggles for air as she takes a swim to de-stress. Luckily she survives after sinking to the bottom of the lake momentarily — and dream sequences on the show suggest the scene represents her inner turmoil as opposed to an actual life or death scare.

Marty has bad dreams too — and audiences don’t immediately know that the trauma being played out on screen isn’t real.

4. Gobs of cash
At one point, $50 million gets stuffed inside an easily-removed lake resort room wall. For being so smart, Marty isn’t very good at hiding the dough he’s responsible for laundering.

5. A boy and some bowels
Marty’s tween son, Jonah (played by the talented young Skylar Gaertner), develops an obsession with vultures and the dead prey they seek and then disembowel.

6. Son with a gun
Once Jonah, along with his sister Charlotte, learn what their father really does for a living, he discovers the violent, murderous ways of the cartel in online videos. Next chance he gets, he stashes guns and learns how to use ‘em too.

7. Deadly garbage truck
A real estate agent who Wendy’s been working with quarrels with his annoying mom. Said mom backs up into the street as she argues back at him and — boom! — hit by a garbage truck.

8. Mom-less newborn
Thankfully the show only alludes to the killing of a pastor’s very pregnant wife. But given the fact that he has a new baby and no mom in sight — and that powerful local heroin growers had promised to rip the baby from the mother’s womb if things didn’t go their way — our imaginations are left to envision the terrible scene.

9. Apparent infant drowning
Yes. It’s unbearable to watch the pastor (Michael Mosley) push his baby under water — even when the tyke is finally pulled from under water, gasping for air, in what audiences learn is a baptism, after all.

Note to parents: Never hold your baby underwater that long.

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MSNBC Tops Fox News as Most-Watched Cable Network on Primetime Weekdays http://www.thewrap.com/why-msnbc-beats-cnn-primetime-ratings-in-trump-era/ http://www.thewrap.com/why-msnbc-beats-cnn-primetime-ratings-in-trump-era/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 20:37:04 +0000 Brian Flood http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1677446 MSNBC finished ahead of Fox News as the most-watched cable network during weekday primetime last week, averaging 2.34 million viewers from July 17-21. It marks the first time in the 21-year history of the cable network that it came in as the No. 1 cable network during weekday primetime among total viewers.

While President Trump slams CNN as “fake news” on a regular basis, its historically progressive rival MSNBC has made big strides among viewership the entire year. It has now beaten CNN among total primetime viewers for 29 of the last 30 weeks dating back to the start of 2017.

CNN topped MSNBC among primetime total viewers from both July 2015 and July 2016 to date, but trails in 2017. Year to-date, MSNBC is the fastest growing cable network in total viewers, adding 865,000 sets of eyeballs while CNN has lost 128,000 viewers over the same time period, according to Nielsen’s weekday primetime data. MSNBC’s total viewership is up 78 percent compared to this time in 2016, which was an extremely newsworthy period that included the GOP convention and the Hillary Clinton email drama. (On the flip side, CNN brought in stellar ratings in July 2016, dominating MSNBC among convention coverage).

MSNBC’s primetime lineup is clearly a major reason for the growth, as their lineup of Chris Hayes, Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell hold Trump accountable on a nightly basis. While CNN isn’t exactly pro-Trump during primetime, Anderson Cooper and Don Lemon are anchors who typically rely on interviews and guests, as opposed to the MSNBC hosts who have been attracting viewers by opening shows with powerful left-leaning political monologues.

The Hill media reporter and columnist Joe Concha told TheWrap he believes that “MSNBC is simply more transparent” about what they are in terms of its progressive tilt, and audiences respect that. He said having true opinion hosts during primetime “allows them to be more provocative” than CNN. In addition, the president isn’t doing CNN any favors.

“Trump’s attacks on CNN impact it in the sense that no Trump supporter will watch the network now based on preconceived notions alone,” Concha said. “So, if liberals are watching MSNBC and conservatives and populists watch Fox News, there ain’t much leftover for CNN.”

As a result, MSNBC trails only Fox News in primetime total viewers among all of cable for the year, beating powerhouse networks such as TNT, AMC, ESPN, HGTV and USA. MSNBC is now on target to average 2 million viewers in primetime for the fifth consecutive month in July, while CNN has never had a streak that long in its history.

Historian Andrew Tyndall, who monitors all-things television news for his website Tyndall Report, thinks that MSNBC is picking up viewers who are giving up broadcast nightly newscasts in favor of more fiery opinions found on cable.

“The most important ratings trend this year has been the overall increase in the total cable news audience for all three channels combined. Simultaneously, there has been a reduction for the broadcast networks’ nightly newscasts, so the total TV news audience may be stable overall, with a switch in preference from broadcast to cable,” Tyndall told TheWrap.

Tyndall continued: “This makes sense in the highly charged political atmosphere of the first six months of the Trump Administration, since cable news tends to be more politically oriented, whereas broadcast news is more general in scope.”

But MSNBC is thriving beyond primetime, posting its most-watched month ever during weekdays from 9 a.m. through 5 p.m. ET in June. MSNBC is on pace to beat CNN in July in the dayside category for the first monthly win since October 2012.

“Everyone is feeling good about dayside. Our team is working really hard and we have the full support of NBC News. You can see that in our reporting and we’re glad our viewers see it too. We’re excited to have the best month ever in nearly 5 years,” an MSNBC insider told TheWrap.

Back in the fall of 2015, MSNBC chairman Andy Lack made major changes to the network’s daytime programming. Political programs such as “The Rundown with Jose Diaz-Balart” and “NewsNation with Tamron Hall” were replaced with “MSNBC Live,” which is essentially a newscast. Lack’s decision to focus on breaking news during business hours has paid off, and MSNBC has now topped CNN for 21-straight weeks among total day viewers.

All the major cable news networks have shown daytime growth in 2017, thanks to Trump, Sean Spicer and a variety of breaking news, but MSNBC has easily picked up the most viewers. CNN and Fox News are both up 27 percent from the same point in 2016, but MSNBC has grown a whopping 64 percent.

As much as MSNBC’s talent disagrees with the president, he has certainly helped the network attract viewers.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Greta Van Susteren Parts Ways With MSNBC

MSNBC Calls Trump's Personal Attacks on 'Morning Joe' Hosts 'A Sad Day for America'

MSNBC's Jacob Soboroff Brings 'Sense of Urgency' to Opioid Crisis

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‘Game of Thrones:’ See Samwell Tarly Go From Coward to Maester-in-Training (Photos) http://www.thewrap.com/game-of-thrones-samwell-tarly-goes-from-coward-to-maester-in-training/ http://www.thewrap.com/game-of-thrones-samwell-tarly-goes-from-coward-to-maester-in-training/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 20:25:18 +0000 Ashley Boucher http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1677030 Sam (played by John Bradley) is one of the beloved characters on “Game of Thrones,” and his character has grown a lot in the past seven seasons. Here’s a breakdown of his biggest moments, culminating in Sunday’s attempt to cure Greyscale.

In Season 1, we are first introduced to Sam when he arrives as a fresh recruit for the Night’s Watch. He’s fat, cowardly and doesn’t really want to be there, but nonetheless befriends Jon Snow, who helps him come out of his shell. This is a friendship that will last the series, and has long been compared to the relationship between Frodo and Samwise Gamgee in “The Lord of the Rings.”

After Sam and Jon officially state their vows, they’re both assigned to the Stewards. This is expected for Sam, and he’s assigned to Maester Aemon, hinting at his future role as Maester of Castle Black.

Convinces Jon to stay at the Wall

When Jon hears about the death of his father Ned Stark, he is convinced he must abandon the vows he just made and help his family. But Sam, in courage he’s learned from Jon, convinces Lord Snow to stay.

Sam is part of the ranging expedition in Season 2, and assumes Jon’s stewarding responsibilities when he goes further with Qhorin Halfhand. He discovers dragonglass (which you’ll know by now is very important) and somehow survives the Battle of the Fist of the First Men, despite being slow and not really helping anyone.

The remaining men of the Night’s Watch return to Craster’s Keep on their way back to Castle Black. Gilly, the wildling daughter of Craster Sam met at their first stop, is giving birth to a boy. Sam helps her escape traitors of the Night’s Watch, who kill Craster and Lord Commander Jeor Mormont.

 

Related stories from TheWrap:

11 Hilarious Remixes of Sam Tarly's 'Soup and Poop' Montage from 'Game of Thrones' (Photos)

'Game of Thrones' Star John Bradley Tells Us the Most Tragic Way He Could Die on the Show (Video)

'Game of Thrones' Poop Montage Explained: John Bradley Gives Us the Scoop (Video)

'Game of Thrones' Star John Bradley Exclusive StudioWrap Portraits (Photos)

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http://www.thewrap.com/game-of-thrones-samwell-tarly-goes-from-coward-to-maester-in-training/feed/ 0 Sam (played by John Bradley), one of the most beloved characters on "Game of Thrones," has grown a lot in the past seven seasons. Here's a breakdown of his biggest moments, culminating in Sunday's attempt to cure Greyscale. 

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Sam (played by John Bradley), one of the most beloved characters on "Game of Thrones," has grown a lot in the past seven seasons. Here's a breakdown of his biggest moments, culminating in Sunday's attempt to cure Greyscale. 

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In Season 1, we are first introduced to Sam when he arrives as a fresh recruit for the Night's Watch. He's fat, cowardly and doesn't really want to be there, but nonetheless befriends Jon Snow, who helps him come out of his shell. This is a friendship that will last the series, and has long been compared to the relationship between Frodo and Samwise Gamgee in "The Lord of the Rings." 

 

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In Season 1, we are first introduced to Sam when he arrives as a fresh recruit for the Night's Watch. He's fat, cowardly and doesn't really want to be there, but nonetheless befriends Jon Snow, who helps him come out of his shell. This is a friendship that will last the series, and has long been compared to the relationship between Frodo and Samwise Gamgee in "The Lord of the Rings." 

 

]]>
After Sam and Jon officially state their vows, they're both assigned to the Stewards. This is expected for Sam, and he's assigned to Maester Aemon, hinting at his future role as Maester of Castle Black. 

]]>
After Sam and Jon officially state their vows, they're both assigned to the Stewards. This is expected for Sam, and he's assigned to Maester Aemon, hinting at his future role as Maester of Castle Black. 

]]>
When Jon hears about the death of his father Ned Stark, he is convinced he must abandon the vows he just made and help his family. But Sam, in courage he's learned from Jon, convinces Lord Snow to stay.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1674325" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Game of Thrones’ 101: Who’s Left in House Martell?" target=""]

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When Jon hears about the death of his father Ned Stark, he is convinced he must abandon the vows he just made and help his family. But Sam, in courage he's learned from Jon, convinces Lord Snow to stay.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1674325" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Game of Thrones’ 101: Who’s Left in House Martell?" target=""]

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Sam is part of the ranging expedition in Season 2, and assumes Jon's stewarding responsibilities when he goes further with Qhorin Halfhand. He discovers dragonglass (which you'll know by now is very important) and somehow survives the Battle of the Fist of the First Men, despite being slow and not really helping anyone. 

 

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Sam is part of the ranging expedition in Season 2, and assumes Jon's stewarding responsibilities when he goes further with Qhorin Halfhand. He discovers dragonglass (which you'll know by now is very important) and somehow survives the Battle of the Fist of the First Men, despite being slow and not really helping anyone. 

 

]]>
The remaining men of the Night's Watch return to Craster's Keep on their way back to Castle Black. Gilly, the wildling daughter of Craster Sam met at their first stop, is giving birth to a boy. Sam helps her escape traitors of the Night's Watch, who kill Craster and Lord Commander Jeor Mormont. 

]]>
The remaining men of the Night's Watch return to Craster's Keep on their way back to Castle Black. Gilly, the wildling daughter of Craster Sam met at their first stop, is giving birth to a boy. Sam helps her escape traitors of the Night's Watch, who kill Craster and Lord Commander Jeor Mormont. 

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On the way back to Castle Black, Sam and Gilly take refuge from the cold in an abandoned, makeshift cabin. But a White Walker -- used to Craster's sacrifices of baby boys -- finds them. After the White Walker destroys Sam's sword, he pulls out some of the dragonglass he found north of the Wall, stabs him with it, and the Walker dies.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1004626" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Game of Thrones’ 15 Most Memorable Sex Scenes (Photos)" target=""]

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On the way back to Castle Black, Sam and Gilly take refuge from the cold in an abandoned, makeshift cabin. But a White Walker -- used to Craster's sacrifices of baby boys -- finds them. After the White Walker destroys Sam's sword, he pulls out some of the dragonglass he found north of the Wall, stabs him with it, and the Walker dies.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1004626" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Game of Thrones’ 15 Most Memorable Sex Scenes (Photos)" target=""]

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The journey back to Castle Black continues with a run-in with Bran Stark, Jon's younger brother. Sam immediately recognizes Bran because of his direwolf. Bran begs Sam to take them north of the Wall, which Sam won't do, but he does send them on their way with the dragonglass he found at the Fist of the First Men. 

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The journey back to Castle Black continues with a run-in with Bran Stark, Jon's younger brother. Sam immediately recognizes Bran because of his direwolf. Bran begs Sam to take them north of the Wall, which Sam won't do, but he does send them on their way with the dragonglass he found at the Fist of the First Men. 

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During the battle to defend Castle Black from the wildlings, Sam hides Gilly in a storage room with her baby. Before he goes back up to join the fighting, he finally kisses her. This episode is also a rarity for "Game of Thrones" in that the entire episode is spent at the Wall. 

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During the battle to defend Castle Black from the wildlings, Sam hides Gilly in a storage room with her baby. Before he goes back up to join the fighting, he finally kisses her. This episode is also a rarity for "Game of Thrones" in that the entire episode is spent at the Wall. 

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Fast forward through a lot that doesn't directly involve Sam, and Jon has returned from the battle at Hardhome. Jon decides Sam must go to Oldtown and become the new Maester of the Night's Watch. 

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Fast forward through a lot that doesn't directly involve Sam, and Jon has returned from the battle at Hardhome. Jon decides Sam must go to Oldtown and become the new Maester of the Night's Watch. 

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After a lot of seasickness, Sam finally gets to Old Town -- but not before trying to leave Gilly with his parents at Horn Hill. When his father discovers Gilly is a wilding, he threatens Sam, and he decides to steal his father's sword, Heartsbane, and take Gilly with him to the Citadel. 

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1672000" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Game of Thrones’ 101: How Many Stark Direwolves Are Left?" target=""]

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After a lot of seasickness, Sam finally gets to Old Town -- but not before trying to leave Gilly with his parents at Horn Hill. When his father discovers Gilly is a wilding, he threatens Sam, and he decides to steal his father's sword, Heartsbane, and take Gilly with him to the Citadel. 

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1672000" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Game of Thrones’ 101: How Many Stark Direwolves Are Left?" target=""]

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And this brings us to the current season, with Sam studying away to become a maester. He's clearly impatient (we would be too, if we were responsible for all that poop), and ends up stealing a key to the restricted section of the library. There, he discovers a book that says Dragonstone is sitting on top of a giant reserve of dragonglass. He immediately sends a raven to Jon with the news. 

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1679647" title="Also Read" link_title="First Big Holy S— Moment of ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7 Has Fans Freaking Out" target=""]

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And this brings us to the current season, with Sam studying away to become a maester. He's clearly impatient (we would be too, if we were responsible for all that poop), and ends up stealing a key to the restricted section of the library. There, he discovers a book that says Dragonstone is sitting on top of a giant reserve of dragonglass. He immediately sends a raven to Jon with the news. 

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1679647" title="Also Read" link_title="First Big Holy S— Moment of ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7 Has Fans Freaking Out" target=""]

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Sam runs in to Jorah Mormont, who is at the Citadel because of his severe case of Greyscale. The Archmaester tells Jorah he has six months before the infection will start affecting his mind. He also forbids Sam to try a cure deemed too risky -- but Sam tries it anyway, determined to save Ser Jorah. 

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1000826" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Game of Thrones': Most Upsetting, Shocking and Disturbing Deaths So Far (Photos)" target=""]

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Sam runs in to Jorah Mormont, who is at the Citadel because of his severe case of Greyscale. The Archmaester tells Jorah he has six months before the infection will start affecting his mind. He also forbids Sam to try a cure deemed too risky -- but Sam tries it anyway, determined to save Ser Jorah. 

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1000826" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Game of Thrones': Most Upsetting, Shocking and Disturbing Deaths So Far (Photos)" target=""]

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New James Bond Movie Set for 2019 Release, No Word on Daniel Craig http://www.thewrap.com/new-james-bond-movie-set-2019-release-no-word-daniel-craig/ http://www.thewrap.com/new-james-bond-movie-set-2019-release-no-word-daniel-craig/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 20:10:07 +0000 Matt Donnelly http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1680037 James Bond is heading back to movie theaters with or without Daniel Craig.

Franchise producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson of EON Productions, announced that the 25th James Bond film will hit the U.S. on November 8, 2019. It will rollout in Europe one week prior, keeping with tradition.

Neal Purvis and Robert Wade will return to write the script, as they have for each Craig-led Bond — titles including “Skyfall,” “Spectre,” “Quantum of Solace” and “Casino Royale”

Broccoli and Wilson promised “details regarding distribution, including international release dates, the film’s cast and director, will be announced at a later date.”

We should hope so — the film has a tad over two years to get shot, edited and drum up fanfare once again.

A domestic distributor for the film is also up in the air. In April, TheWrap reported that four major studios are locked in a bidding war for the one-off rights.

Warner Bros., Universal, 20th Century Fox, Sony Pictures were all vying for the project.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Christopher Nolan Endorses Tom Hardy for James Bond: 'He'd Be Amazing'

Blake Lively to Star in Female Spy Franchise From James Bond Producers

Michael Bond, Creator of Paddington Bear, Dies at 91

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Evan Peters, Sarah Paulson Will Play Lovers in ‘American Horror Story: Cult’ http://www.thewrap.com/evan-peters-sarah-paulson-american-horror-story/ http://www.thewrap.com/evan-peters-sarah-paulson-american-horror-story/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 19:57:24 +0000 Carli Velocci http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679989 The first “American Horror Story: Cult” character details were revealed by showrunner Ryan Murphy on Instagram Monday and it includes two franchise mainstays — Evan Peters and Sarah Paulson.

Murphy, who’s been taking to social media to announce the smallest details leading up to Season 7, once again used Instagram to tease the audience.

In the post he detailed drawings of Peters and Paulson with the “AHS: Cult” moniker. He then named them and hinted that the two will be in love.

“Ally and Kai in CULT… a love story for the ages,” he wrote.

Ally and Kai in CULT…a love story for the ages.

A post shared by Ryan Murphy (@mrrpmurphy) on

The drawing had already been posted online. On July 23, Paulson tweeted that she had made it her new profile picture.

This’ll be the second time that Paulson and Peters will be teaming up as a married couple in an “American Horror Story” installment. In “Roanoke,” Peters played Rory Monahan, an actor who lands a role on “My Roanoke Nightmare,” the re-enactment of the main action of the series. He meets Audrey Tindall (Paulson) on the set and the two get married.

However, when the two get invited back in the second half of the season to film the sequel, he decides to not continue with the show — only to be killed off by the nurses that haunted the Roanoke house.

Hopefully their marriage will go better this time? Also it’s looking like Peters — who was only minimally in “Roanoke” — will be involved more in “Cult.”

After months of speculation and a bunch of cryptic Instagram posts, FX and Murphy finally revealed the title of Season 7 at San Diego Comic-Con last week. So far, few other details have been revealed besides that it’ll be a modern-day story and that it’ll somehow involve the 2016 presidential election.

The trailer featured a creepy narration: “Do you ever feel alone. Does it seem like no one ever understands you? Do some people just make you sick? Are you afraid? We can set you free. We can make you strong. We want you.”

Billie Lourd, Colton Haynes and Billy Eichner are joining the series for Season 7, with Lena Dunham set to appear in a small role.

Related stories from TheWrap:

'American Horror Story: Cult' Teaser Isn't Clowning Around When It Comes to Creepiness (Video)

'American Horror Story' Season 7 Title and Premiere Date Revealed at Comic-Con

Ryan Murphy Says Next 'American Horror Story ' Will Be 'About the Election We Just Went Through' (Video)

Everybody and Their Mom Is Baffled by 'American Horror Story: Roanoke' Finale

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Hollywood’s Virtual Reality Push: How All 6 Major Studios Stack Up http://www.thewrap.com/hollywood-virtual-reality-push-how-all-6-major-studios-stack-up/ http://www.thewrap.com/hollywood-virtual-reality-push-how-all-6-major-studios-stack-up/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 19:55:21 +0000 Matt Pressberg and Matt Donnelly http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1678783 Hollywood’s heavy hitters are all betting on virtual reality to some degree, but the size of those wagers varies.

Fox was first with a “Martian” VR experience unveiled at last year’s CES show in Las Vegas and has since gone all-in with multiple projects. tied to some of its biggest franchises, like “Alien” and “Planet of the Apes.” On the other hand, current box office champ Disney recently announced a Marvel VR game, but has been relatively slow to push out VR experiences linked to its big-screen content.

With the box office growing slowly and the pay-TV landscape in flux, studios feel like they can’t miss out on what could be a big part of the future of filmed entertainment. But is it a wise move?

It’s almost like a chicken-and-the-egg situation,” Aaron Sauceda, a senior analyst with Accenture’s Global Strategy Practice, told TheWrap. “The biggest challenge is obviously going to be adoption, but the challenge with adoption is if there’s no content to consume, then adoption is going to be pretty limited.

“On the flip-side, if content creators are seeing adoption being pretty limited and thus monetization being limited, then they’re not going to really want to invest the time and resources to make that content. It’s a tough situation there, and maybe that’s where Hollywood’s opportunity is — maybe they can invest the resources in the content.”

And as TheWrap takes a look at the state of VR in the entertainment business, here’s where the Big Six stand right now:

20TH CENTURY FOX

Twentieth Century Fox is probably the major studio most enthusiastic about virtual reality, forming a dedicated division for video gaming, location-based entertainment, virtual and augmented reality productions called FoxNext earlier this year.

Fox’s “The Martian VR Experience” was the first foray into the technology from any of the major studios, followed by one tied to “The Revenant” re-creating the experience of being attacked by a bear.

In April, Fox unveiled a VR experience tied to its “Alien: Covenant” film, titled “Alien: Covenant In Utero,” where the user was transported inside a womb alongside a Neomorph, a white-headed creature new to the movie that is born when alien spores are released from pods and enter people’s bloodstreams — before the creature burst from the body in disgustingly impressive fashion.

The experience was developed by the FoxNext VR Studio along with RSA VR, MPC VR, a Technicolor company, Mach 1 and technology partners AMD Radeon and Dell.

“In Utero” was hardly an afterthought to the film. It was produced by Ridley Scott, who directed the first “Alien” movie and both prequels, “Prometheus” and “Alien: Covenant.” Scott was actively involved in creating the experience, offering advice on details like what the Neomorph’s breathing should sound like, “In Utero” director David Karlak said at a panel following a demo of the experience.

FoxNext has also partnered with VR studio Within to develop more VR experiences tied to some of its big franchises, with new “Planet of the Apes” slated for the fourth quarter and “Alien” on deck for the first half of 2018.

Both of those will be for sale across tethered platforms, including the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. The studio is also developing an “Alien” free-roam VR experience, where users can move around a large, dedicated open space. The  studio also is partnering with Annapurna on an original VR film to be produced and directed by Within CEO Chris Milk.

WARNER BROS.

Warner Bros. has also embraced high-end wired VR, making it a major part of the marketing strategy for a movie that seems to be perfectly suited for it, Steven Spielberg’s upcoming sci-fi film “Ready Player One,” which takes place inside a virtual reality game.

The studio partnered with HTC Vive to produce multiple pieces of VR content that will be available on a variety of platforms from the premium-priced, PC-based Vive to mobile headsets. Vive will also bring its “Ready Player One” experiences to its Viveport Arcade platform for location-based entertainment.

Last fall, Warner Bros. VR rolled out a “Batman: Arkham VR” video game first available for PlayStation VR and extended to Vive and Oculus. In addition, the studio signed a co-financing deal with IMAX in March to develop three VR experiences, two of which will be tied to “Justice League and “Aquaman.”

Warner Bros. declined to comment about its future VR projects.

PARAMOUNT

Paramount Pictures held a virtual reality conference, the VRTL Summit, on its Hollywood lot in April, during which new studio chief Jim Gianopulos gave his first public remarks. His boss, National Amusements President Shari Redstone, even strapped on a set of goggles herself.

The studio debuted its first movie-tied VR earlier this year, an Oculus-exclusive “Ghost in the Shell” experience created by Here be Dragons.

Paramount also declined to comment about its upcoming VR releases.

SONY

Sony unveiled an experience for its recent comic-book hit “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” which allows wannabe Spideys to practice their web-shooting skills and swing above New York. The VR experience, produced by Sony Pictures Virtual Reality and developed by CreateVR, came out June 30 — and is available for free on the Vive, Oculus and PlayStation VR.

The studio also has what’s essentially a slate deal with VR firm Madison Wells Media, headed by veteran Hollywood producer Gigi Pritzker and film finance vet Clint Kisker.

The two have an exclusive partnership to create original, stand-alone VR experiences related to specific Sony titles, including “Passengers: Awakening VR,” released in March and featuring the voice of big-screen “Passengers” star Chris Pratt.

The studio has also produced VR projects for “The Walk,” “Ghostbusters,” and “Goosebumps.”

Sony declined to comment about its future VR initiatives.

UNIVERSAL

Universal may have gotten more buzz for its VR experience tied to Tom Cruise’s “The Mummy” than for the film itself. The project, which premiered at this year’s SXSW Film Festival, was the result of a collaboration between the studio and 5th Wall, an agency specializing in VR, AR and 360-degree video services.

In Austin, viewers were escorted into a fully staged airplane hanger and seated in a hydraulic chair from Positron that mimicked the movements of the “Mummy” experience as they unfolded in an Oculus Rift. The content was a behind-the-scenes look at the film’s buzziest scene — an escape from a crashing plane shot in zero-gravity. The experience rolled out in cinemas in the U.S. and abroad, where the box office numbers fared much better for the film.

5th Wall and Universal had previously partnered for an experience built around “Fifty Shades of Grey,” where users could tour title character Christian Grey’s expensive apartment in 360-degree video — including his notorious “red room” full of BDSM toys.

DISNEY

Disney, which set a record last year and became the first studio ever to gross $7 billion in worldwide box office receipts, may not need the bells and whistles of virtual reality to sell films like “Beauty and the Beast” and “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.”

However, some of Disney’s franchises like “Star Wars” are natural fits for VR, and there’s a “Star Wars: Trials on Tatooine” experience available for free on the Vive. 

The Mouse House is also using VR for other, less lucrative but more fulfilling purposes — like cheering up sick kids. “Star Wars: Force For Change,” developed by Lucasfilm’s ILMxLAB, will debut in late 2017, is described as a “physical program geared toward entertainment and distraction purposes for use with children” that incorporates exclusive “Star Wars” content. It will be sent to children’s hospitals and similar facilities across the country.

And just a couple weeks ago, Disney announced a new VR game developed with Oculus, “Marvel Powers United VR,” which is set to hit the Rift exclusively in 2018 — and will be an interesting test of Disney’s ability to monetize its IP, which has been so successful in basically every other medium, in virtual reality.

Disney also declined to comment about its virtual reality pipeline.

Sean Burch contributed reporting to this story.

TheWrap’s Special Report on Virtual Reality:

Why Hollywood Studios are Slow to Embrace Virtual Reality
15 Best VR Experiences So Far, From ‘Hello Mars’ to ‘Gnomes & Goblins’

Related stories from TheWrap:

Facebook Slashes Virtual Reality Headset Price Again to Compete With Sony

New Virtual Reality Series Exposes Cruel Dairy Farm Conditions

Elia Petridis Launches Virtual Reality Company: Fever Content (Exclusive)

Why Hollywood Studios Are Slow to Embrace Virtual Reality

15 Best Virtual Reality Experiences So Far, From 'Hello Mars' to 'Gnomes & Goblins' (Photos)

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Snopes on the Ropes: Fact-Checking Site Pleads for Donations Amid Legal Battle http://www.thewrap.com/snopes-on-the-ropes-fact-checking-site-pleads-for-donations-amid-legal-battle/ http://www.thewrap.com/snopes-on-the-ropes-fact-checking-site-pleads-for-donations-amid-legal-battle/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 19:42:48 +0000 Tim Kenneally http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679994 Here’s a fact for you, internet truth-seekers: Snopes is seeking donations, claiming that the rumor-debunking website is in danger of shuttering because the site is essentially being held “hostage.”

A GoFundMe campaign launched Monday by Snopes co-creator David Mikkelson states that the site “is in danger of closing its doors” because it has been cut off from its “historic source of advertising income.”

“Snopes.com, which began as a small one-person effort in 1994 and has since become one of the Internet’s oldest and most popular fact-checking sites, is in danger of closing its doors. So, for the first time in our history, we are turning to you, our readership, for help,” the fundraising campaign reads.

“We had previously contracted with an outside vendor to provide certain services for Snopes.com. That contractual relationship ended earlier this year, but the vendor will not acknowledge the change in contractual status and continues to essentially hold the Snopes.com web site hostage,” the plea continues. “Although we maintain editorial control (for now), the vendor will not relinquish the site’s hosting to our control, so we cannot modify the site, develop it, or — most crucially — place advertising on it. The vendor continues to insert their own ads and has been withholding the advertising revenue from us.”

The GoFundMe campaign adds, “Our legal team is fighting hard for us, but, having been cut off from all revenue, we are facing the prospect of having no financial means to continue operating the site and paying our staff (not to mention covering our legal fees) in the meanwhile.”

Snopes’ parent company, Bardav Inc., was sued by Proper Media earlier this year. According to Proper’s complaint, Mikkelson’s ex-wife, Snopes co-creator Barbara Mikkelson, sold her half of Bardav to Proper in 2016, following the couple’s divorce.

According to Proper’s complaint, David Mikkelson has “engaged in a lengthy scheme of concealment and subterfuge to gain control of the company and to drain its profits.”

Bardav subsequently filed a cross-complaint against Proper, according to Poynter, alleging breach of contract, among other claims.

In a statement provided to TheWrap on Monday, Proper Media’s attorney, Karl Kronenberger, suggested that the media “conduct its own fact-check of the fundraising plea posted today on Snopes.com.”

“First, Proper Media is far more than an ‘outside vendor’ to Bardav, Inc., the company that owns Snopes. In fact, it is a 50 percent co-owner of Bardav,” Kronenberger said. “Second, in a pending lawsuit, Proper Media has alleged Bardav’s other co-owner, David Mikkelson has engaged in gross financial, technical, and corporate mismanagement, which is reflected in court documents and multiple independent media reports.”

Kronenberger went on to say that Mikkelson “locked out Proper Media from management and control of the company, giving Mr. Mikkelson unfettered access to Bardav’s bank accounts.”

The statement accuses Mikkelson of attempting to “rewrite history” by erasing his ex-wife’s involvement with Snopes.

“Fourth, it is the height of irony that in today’s post, Mr. Mikkelson attempts to rewrite history by saying Snopes ‘began as a small one-person effort in 1994’ — erasing his co-founder, former partner, and wife of many years, Barbara Mikkelson, who owned 50 percent of Bardav before selling her interest to Proper Media in 2016.”

“In summary, today’s post only confirms Proper Media’s allegations that Mr. Mikkelson has drained the company’s bank accounts and is unable to operate Snopes profitably without Proper Media’s expertise and management,” Kronenberger concluded.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Health Care Protest: When Will the Left Stop Posting False Mitch McConnell Polio Meme?

'Fargo' Fact Check: The Story of Laura Buxton's Balloon Really Happened

20th Century Fox Apologizes for 'Cure for Wellness' Fake News Stunt: 'We Got It Wrong'

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Justin Bieber Cancels Remainder of Purpose World Tour http://www.thewrap.com/justin-bieber-cancels-remainder-purpose-world-tour/ http://www.thewrap.com/justin-bieber-cancels-remainder-purpose-world-tour/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 19:14:29 +0000 Reid Nakamura http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679984

Justin Bieber has cancelled the remaining dates on his Purpose World Tour, the pop star announced on Monday. No reason was given for the decision beyond “unforeseen circumstances.”

Bieber had 15 more shows scheduled in the U.S., Canada, Japan, the Philippines and Indonesia through October. He has played more than 150 shows since the stadium tour began in March 2016.

Tickets for the upcoming shows will be refunded.

Bieber’s 29 shows in 26 cities in the first half of 2017 earned more than $93 million. Combined with the shows Bieber performed in 2016, the “Purpose” tour, launched in support of the pop star’s most recent album of the same name, has earned over $250 million.

The news comes about a week after the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture released a statement saying that the singer had been barred from performing in China because of past instances of “bad behavior” in the country and elsewhere.

Read the full statement below:

Due to unforeseen circumstances, Justin Bieber will cancel the remainder of the Purpose World Tour concerts.  Justin loves his fans and hates to disappoint them. He thanks his fans for the incredible experience of the Purpose World Tour over last 18 months. He is grateful and honored to have shared that experience with his cast and crew for over 150 successful shows across 6 continents during this run. However, after careful consideration he has decided he will not be performing any further dates. Tickets will be refunded at point of purchase.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Justin Bieber Banned From Playing in China Over 'Bad Behavior'

Stevie Ryan's 5 Best Celebrity Impressions, From Kristen Stewart to Justin Bieber (Videos)

Spotify Yanks Justin Bieber 'Latin King' Ad Amid Complaints

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ABC Sets Fall Premiere Dates: ‘Grey’s Anatomy,’ ‘Marvel’s Inhumans’ Get 2-Hour Launches http://www.thewrap.com/abc-fall-premiere-dates-greys-anatomy-inhumans/ http://www.thewrap.com/abc-fall-premiere-dates-greys-anatomy-inhumans/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 19:00:26 +0000 Ryan Gajewski http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679938 ABC is gearing up for the 2017-2018 fall season by unveiling the premiere dates for its slate.

The network kicks off the action on Monday, Sept. 18, with the start of the 25th season of “Dancing With the Stars.”

There is good news for viewers looking forward to venerable hit “Grey’s Anatomy” and freshman series “Marvel’s Inhumans,” as both get two-hour launches.

Among the premiere dates revealed for new series are Freddie Highmore’s “The Good Doctor,” bowing on Monday, Sept. 25; “Inhumans” on Friday, Sept. 29; and Kyra Sedgwick’s “Ten Days in the Valley” on Sunday, Oct. 1.

“Kevin (Probably) Saves the World,” which stars Jason Ritter and was formerly known as “The Gospel of Kevin,” starts Tuesday, Oct. 3, as does Lea Michele comedy “The Mayor.”

“Once Upon a Time” begins its rebooted Season 7 on a new night, with the premiere set for Friday, Oct. 6. Also shifting nights is “American Housewife,” which begins Season 2 on Wednesday, Sept. 27.

Check out the premiere dates below, with new shows in bold.

Monday, September 18

8:00-10:00 p.m. “Dancing with the Stars” (Season 25 premiere)

Monday, September 25

10:00-11:00 p.m. “The Good Doctor” (Series premiere)

Wednesday, September 27

8:00-8:30 p.m. “The Goldbergs” (Season 5 premiere)

8:30-9:00 p.m. “Speechless” (Season 2 premiere)

9:00-9:30 p.m. “Modern Family” (Season 9 premiere)

9:30-10:00 p.m. “American Housewife” (Season 2 premiere; new day and time)

10:00-11:00 p.m. “Designated Survivor” (Season 2 premiere)

Thursday, September 28

8:00-10:00 p.m. “Grey’s Anatomy” (two-hour Season 14 premiere)

10:00-11:00 p.m. “How to Get Away with Murder” (Season 4 premiere)

Friday, September 29

8:00-10:00 p.m. “Marvel’s Inhumans” (two-hour series premiere)

Sunday, October 1

7:00-8:00 p.m. “The Toy Box” (Season 2 premiere; new day and time)

8:00-10:00 p.m. “Shark Tank” (two-hour Season 9 premiere; new day and time)

10:00-11:00 p.m. “Ten Days in the Valley” (Series premiere)

Tuesday, October 3

8:00-8:30 p.m. “The Middle” (Season 9 premiere)

8:30-9:00 p.m. “Fresh Off the Boat” (Season 4 premiere; new time)

9:00-9:30 p.m. “black-ish” (Season 4 premiere; new day and time)

9:30-10:00 p.m. “The Mayor” (Series premiere)

10:00-11:00 p.m. “Kevin (Probably) Saves the World” (formerly “The Gospel of Kevin”) (Series premiere)

Thursday, October 5

9:00-10:00 p.m. “Scandal” (Season 7 premiere)

Friday, October 6

8:00-9:00 p.m. “Once Upon a Time” (Season 7 premiere; new day and time)

Sunday, October 8

8:00-9:00 p.m. “To Tell the Truth” (Season 3 premiere; new day and time)

Sunday, November 26

7:00-8:00 p.m. “America’s Funniest Home Videos” (Season 28 premiere)

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Once Upon a Time': Creators Defend Cast Shakeup Amidst Fan Outcry

'Supernatural': Fate of Dean and Sam's Mom Stirs 'Problem' in Season 13

'The Simpsons' Rejected Donald Trump's Request for Guest Spot, Showrunner Says

Watch Best Comic-Con TV Trailers, From 'Game of Thrones' to 'American Horror Story' (Videos)

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Nat Geo Wild Goes Wild With Behind-the-Scenes at Westminster Dog Show (Exclusive) http://www.thewrap.com/nat-geo-wild-westminster-dog-show/ http://www.thewrap.com/nat-geo-wild-westminster-dog-show/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 19:00:26 +0000 Carli Velocci http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679931 Nat Geo Wild is going even wilder with a new two-part special about the most dangerous of all annual animal events — the Westminster Dog Show.

The network announced Monday that it greenlit “The Road to Westminster,” which will go behind the scenes at the Westminster Kennel Club and the months leading up to the event.

The special will follow dogs and their handlers as they prep for the competition.

“The Road to Westminster will air as part of our annual BarkFest weekend in the run-up to The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, giving dog lovers everywhere a deeper connection to the entire event,” said EVP and general manager of the network, Geoff Daniels. “This is going to be the ultimate pre-game Westminster experience — must-see TV with tailgating strongly recommended!”

Don’t worry, Nat Geo Wild is still living up to its name with other commentary. The network also greenlit a new series starring survivalist Les Stroud called “Alaska’s Grizzly Gauntlet.” Stroud — who in his previous show “Survivorman” survived for up to 10 days at a time in harsh climates and landscapes — will be tackling, as the title suggests, Alaska wilderness.

Les Stroud/Nat Geo

Stroud will be charging into wild during peak animal activity, according to the network, where creatures such as bear, moose and wolves are hunting.

“Les Stroud has inspired millions of people to explore the wild like no one else,” said Geoff Daniels, executive vice president and general manager of Nat Geo Wild. “Now we’re challenging him to take it to the next level by learning how to face down Alaska’s brutal landscape from its veteran predators. This will be a master class in authentic wilderness survival taught by the animals.”

The final announcement involves a new season of “Untamed,” a digital series set to launch in November. Nat Geo Wild has commissioned 10 episodes of the close look into the ecosystems of Costa Rica — and the colorful and diverse wildlife that lives there.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Watch a Sea Turtle Suck Up a Jellyfish Like Spaghetti, Courtesy of Nat Geo (Video)

Leonardo DiCaprio's 'Before the Flood' to Re-Air on Nat Geo in Response to Trump's Climate Decision

Bill O'Reilly's 'Killing Patton' Movie Plans Canceled by Nat Geo

Here's Nat Geo Wild's Fall Slate – and Insane Footage of a Jaguar Hunting a Crocodile (Exclusive)

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Jared Kushner Compared to George Michael Bluth, Kenneth From ’30 Rock’ After Rare Public Statement http://www.thewrap.com/media-reacts-to-jared-kushners-congressional-committee-statement/ http://www.thewrap.com/media-reacts-to-jared-kushners-congressional-committee-statement/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 18:48:07 +0000 Ashley Boucher http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679747 Media pundits and Hollywood alike weighed in on Jared Kushner’s exceedingly rare public statement, which happened after his closed-doors meeting with Senate Intelligence Committee members on Monday. The president’s son-in-law and senior advisor echoed what he said in an 11-page statement to congressional committees released ahead of a Senate Intelligence Committee meeting.

“I did not collude with Russia,” he said in front of the West Wing. “I do not know of anyone else” on the campaign who did, he added.

Some on Twitter were focused on the rarity of hearing Kushner’s voice (hear it in the CNN video below). “Well never having heard the sound of his voice before today, I can now confirm that @jaredkushner SOUNDS exactly like I thought he would,” one Twitter user said next to a GIF of Kenneth Parcell (Jack McBrayer) from former NBC sitcom “30 Rock.” “I did not collude with Pop Pop,” another tweeted next to a picture of George Michael Bluth (Michael Cera) from “Arrested Development.”

Others mocked Kushner’s occasional word-stumblings during his statement. “Kushner, struggling 2 read cuz I guess they don’t teach that at Harvard when rich daddy buys you in, whined, ‘I did not collude with Russia.'” another user tweeted.

“Jared Kushner is simultaneously responsible for everything and nothing,” “Modern Family” executive producer Danny Zuker tweeted.

See below for a roundup of Twitter reactions.

 

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Morning Joe' Slams Jared Kushner's Revised Russia Statement: 'Chaos and Sloppiness Defense' (Video)

Jared Kushner Told 'Morning Joe': Apologize to Trump to Kill National Enquirer Story (Report)

Jared Kushner Speaks! Twitter Freaks Out Over Hearing His Voice

Can Horror PR Man Josh Raffel Help Jared Kushner 'Get Out' of Trouble?

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‘America’s Got Talent': Dance Duo Will Make You Dizzy With New Routine (Exclusive Video) http://www.thewrap.com/americas-got-talent-junior-emily/ http://www.thewrap.com/americas-got-talent-junior-emily/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 18:27:45 +0000 Ryan Gajewski http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679899

Junior & Emily are returning to take the “America’s Got Talent” judges for a spin.

As seen in an exclusive sneak peek, the male and female dance duo perform a new, twisty routine to The Chainsmokers’ “Don’t Let Me Down,” and Simon Cowell has very high hopes.

“These guys were amazing the first time here,” Cowell tells fellow judges Heidi Klum, Mel B, Howie Mandel and guest DJ Khaled.

Emily informs the judges that the routine features moves they haven’t done yet on the show: “We’re definitely taking a risk.”

“We wanted to use a song that everybody knows, that everybody could connect to,” Junior adds. “And we stepped up the difficulty of our moves as well.”

Check out the footage above.

“America’s Got Talent” airs on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on NBC. 

Related stories from TheWrap:

'America's Got Talent': 9-Year-Old Belts Alicia Keys, Blows Away Judges (Video)

'America's Got Talent' Singer on Crushing That Whitney Houston Song: 'My Voice Was So Tired'

'America's Got Talent' Just Broke a Reality Ratings Record (Exclusive)

'America's Got Talent' Teen Says Song Is One of Her Cancer-Stricken Dad's 'Best Moments'

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Comic-Con 2017: The Winners and Losers (Photos) http://www.thewrap.com/comic-con-2017-winners-and-losers/ http://www.thewrap.com/comic-con-2017-winners-and-losers/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 18:12:12 +0000 Phil Owen and Ross A. Lincoln http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679482 Another Comic-Con has come and gone, and it was as full of delightful experiences and time wasted getting lost in the mass of humanity as ever. So who came out of the show looking best? Let’s look back on how this year’s show went.

Winner — DC

Wonder Woman did a lot to help the image of the DC movieverse, but all the drama of the past couple years doesn’t go away easily. For the moment, at least, they made us forget with a Comic-Con trailer that looked much better than all the previous marketing and a glowing Ben Affleck on stage shooting down the rumors that he’s on the way out as Batman. DC was a ton of fun.

Loser — DC

With the DC Extended Universe really ramping up now, it kinda sucks that DC doesn’t get its own Hall H presentation separate from the rest of the Warner Bros slate. Marvel has a big leg up in that regard.

Loser — Blade Runner 2049

Another casualty of jamming the DC slate in with For a nerd-aimed blockbuster to make a real splash in Hall H, it’s gotta bring the goods, but Warner Bros didn’t really do that with Blade Runner. They’d already released a new trailer the Monday before Comic-Con, and there wasn’t much to the brief clip that they showed. The return of “Blade Runner” is a huge deal, and it deserved better than a panel everybody had forgotten about an hour after it happened.

Winner — David Lynch

The “Twin Peaks” co-creator didn’t show up for the Showtime revival’s panel in Hall H, but he certainly left an impression with a bizarre but incredibly funny video message to fans.

Loser — 20th Century Fox

Deadpool and X-Men were nowhere to be found in Hall H this year, much to the chagrin of the folks who has stayed up all night in line to see Fox’s presentation.

Winner — “Kingsman: The Golden Circle”

The absence of “Deadpool” was good for “Kingsman,” though, which got the entirety of Fox’s Hall H hour to serve up fun antics (like Halle Berry chugging a pint of bourbon) and some really impressive clips.

Loser — Star Wars

“Star Wars” doesn’t come to Comic-Con aside from merch booths on the show floor, but in 2016 you couldn’t look in any direction without seeing somebody wearing “Star Wars” gear. This year, the amount of fans in “Star Wars” gears was way, way down.

Loser — “The Walking Dead”

They came out and showed a very long trailer full of context-free shots, then a retrospective video, then went immediately to audience Q&A for the rest of the hour they had in Hall H. That’s not exactly substantial content.

Winner — Marvel Film

Comic-Con is kinda hellish in a lot of ways, but Marvel’s Saturday-night showcase never fails to make it all seem worth it. This year was definitely not an exception, with fans in Hall H being treated to spectacular and really substantial clips from “Thor: Ragnarok” and “Black Panther,” as well as the “Avengers: Infinity War” sizzle reel they showed at D23 the week before. If I were to call any presentation the overall winner of SDCC 2017 it would be this one. But that’s usually the case.

Winner — The Defenders

Netflix really treated the fans in Hall H on Friday night, premiering the entire first episode of “The Defenders.” And it was good! After a long day of mostly uneventful Hall H panels, it was a very welcome surprise.

Winner — Netflix

Aside from “The Defenders,” Netflix showed off four minutes of its upcoming “Punisher” series and treated the Hall H crowd to some meaty clips from the films “Bright” and “Death Note.” Oh, and they also held a screening of “Death Note” on Thursday night. Netflix really brought its A-game to Comic-Con this year.

Loser — “Game of Thrones”

Normally, Comic-Con takes place a months after the season has ended, meaning there isn’t usually anything meaty for “Game of Thrones” to bring. We’d hoped that this year would be different, since the panel took place a week into season 7. But aside from a new short trailer, this year’s “Game of Thrones” panel was as insubstantial as always. But, hey, at least Alfie Allen brought a puppy who is a good boy and won everything yes he did yes he did!

Loser — Actual Comics Fans

It’s a cliche to complain that ‘Comic-Con isn’t about the comics anymore’ but this is different. After 44 years as one of SDCC’s biggest sellers, legendary retailer Mile High Comics skipped the 2017 event.

Owner Chuck Rozanski cited rising costs imposed on vendors, stricter safety rules and celebrity-packed offsite events for reducing foot traffic, and profit, inside the con. The absence of one of the event’s original participants was a significant, and unfortunate, milestone.

]]>
http://www.thewrap.com/comic-con-2017-winners-and-losers/feed/ 0 Another Comic-Con has come and gone. As always, it was full of delightful experiences and some so-so ones. So who came out of the show looking best? Let's look back on how this year's show went.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1679556" title="Also Read" link_title="Inside Comic-Con Parties With Seth Rogen, James Van Der Beek and ‘Stranger Things’ (Photos)" target=""][contextual-link post_id="1675708" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Justice League’ Trailer Offers First Look at Villain Steppenwolf (Video)" target=""]

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Another Comic-Con has come and gone. As always, it was full of delightful experiences and some so-so ones. So who came out of the show looking best? Let's look back on how this year's show went.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1679556" title="Also Read" link_title="Inside Comic-Con Parties With Seth Rogen, James Van Der Beek and ‘Stranger Things’ (Photos)" target=""][contextual-link post_id="1675708" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Justice League’ Trailer Offers First Look at Villain Steppenwolf (Video)" target=""]

]]>
Winner -- DC

Wonder Woman did a lot to help the image of the DC movieverse, but all the drama of the past couple years doesn't go away easily. For the moment, at least, they made us forget with a Comic-Con trailer that looked much better than all the previous marketing and a glowing Ben Affleck on stage shooting down the rumors that he's on the way out as Batman. DC was a ton of fun.

 

 

 

]]>
Winner -- DC

Wonder Woman did a lot to help the image of the DC movieverse, but all the drama of the past couple years doesn't go away easily. For the moment, at least, they made us forget with a Comic-Con trailer that looked much better than all the previous marketing and a glowing Ben Affleck on stage shooting down the rumors that he's on the way out as Batman. DC was a ton of fun.

 

 

 

]]>
Loser -- DC 

With the DC Extended Universe really ramping up now, it kinda sucks that DC doesn't get its own Hall H presentation separate from the rest of the Warner Bros slate. Marvel has a big leg up in that regard. 

]]>
Loser -- DC 

With the DC Extended Universe really ramping up now, it kinda sucks that DC doesn't get its own Hall H presentation separate from the rest of the Warner Bros slate. Marvel has a big leg up in that regard. 

]]>
Loser -- "Blade Runner 2049"

Another casualty of jamming the DC slate in with the rest of WB's lineup. For a nerd-aimed blockbuster to make a real splash in Hall H, it's gotta bring the goods, but Warner Bros didn't really do that with Blade Runner. They'd already released a new trailer the Monday before Comic-Con, and there wasn't much to the brief clip that they showed. The return of "Blade Runner" is a huge deal, and it deserved better than a panel everybody had forgotten about an hour after it happened.

]]>
Loser -- "Blade Runner 2049"

Another casualty of jamming the DC slate in with the rest of WB's lineup. For a nerd-aimed blockbuster to make a real splash in Hall H, it's gotta bring the goods, but Warner Bros didn't really do that with Blade Runner. They'd already released a new trailer the Monday before Comic-Con, and there wasn't much to the brief clip that they showed. The return of "Blade Runner" is a huge deal, and it deserved better than a panel everybody had forgotten about an hour after it happened.

]]>
Winner -- David Lynch

The "Twin Peaks" co-creator didn't show up for the Showtime revival's panel in Hall H, but he certainly left an impression with a bizarre but incredibly funny video message to fans.

]]>
Winner -- David Lynch

The "Twin Peaks" co-creator didn't show up for the Showtime revival's panel in Hall H, but he certainly left an impression with a bizarre but incredibly funny video message to fans.

]]>
Winner -- "Twin Peaks"

There's an art to talking at length about your show without providing any details whatsoever but also not being boring -- and the cast of "Twin Peaks" pulled it off. Showtime also did fans a real solid with an early screening of Part 11 on Friday night. It'd be tough for a TV show to show up to Comic-Con any better than that.

]]>
Winner -- "Twin Peaks"

There's an art to talking at length about your show without providing any details whatsoever but also not being boring -- and the cast of "Twin Peaks" pulled it off. Showtime also did fans a real solid with an early screening of Part 11 on Friday night. It'd be tough for a TV show to show up to Comic-Con any better than that.

]]>
Loser -- 20th Century Fox

Deadpool and X-Men were nowhere to be found in Hall H this year, much to the chagrin of the folks who has stayed up all night in line to see Fox's presentation. 

]]>
Loser -- 20th Century Fox

Deadpool and X-Men were nowhere to be found in Hall H this year, much to the chagrin of the folks who has stayed up all night in line to see Fox's presentation. 

]]>
Winner -- "Kingsman: The Golden Circle"

The absence of "Deadpool" was good for "Kingsman," though, which got the entirety of Fox's Hall H hour to serve up fun antics (like Halle Berry chugging a pint of bourbon) and some lengthy and really impressive clips.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1677986" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Kingsman: The Golden Circle’ Opener Is ‘Tokyo Drift’ Meets ‘Deadpool,’ and That’s Kind of Great" target=""]

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Winner -- "Kingsman: The Golden Circle"

The absence of "Deadpool" was good for "Kingsman," though, which got the entirety of Fox's Hall H hour to serve up fun antics (like Halle Berry chugging a pint of bourbon) and some lengthy and really impressive clips.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1677986" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Kingsman: The Golden Circle’ Opener Is ‘Tokyo Drift’ Meets ‘Deadpool,’ and That’s Kind of Great" target=""]

]]>
Loser -- "Star Wars"

"Star Wars" doesn't come to Comic-Con aside from merch booths on the show floor, but in 2016 you couldn't look in any direction without seeing somebody wearing "Star Wars" gear. This year, the amount of fans repping "Star Wars" was way, way down, indicating perhaps that enthusiasm for the mega-franchise has come back down to earth.

]]>
Loser -- "Star Wars"

"Star Wars" doesn't come to Comic-Con aside from merch booths on the show floor, but in 2016 you couldn't look in any direction without seeing somebody wearing "Star Wars" gear. This year, the amount of fans repping "Star Wars" was way, way down, indicating perhaps that enthusiasm for the mega-franchise has come back down to earth.

]]>
Loser -- "The Walking Dead"

They came out and showed a very long trailer full of context-free shots, then a retrospective video, then went immediately to audience Q&A for the rest of the hour they had in Hall H. That's not exactly substantial content.

]]>
Loser -- "The Walking Dead"

They came out and showed a very long trailer full of context-free shots, then a retrospective video, then went immediately to audience Q&A for the rest of the hour they had in Hall H. That's not exactly substantial content.

]]>
Winner -- Marvel Film Comic-Con is kinda hellish in a lot of ways, but Marvel's Saturday-night showcase never fails to make it all seem worth it. This year was definitely not an exception, with fans in Hall H being treated to spectacular and really substantial clips from "Thor: Ragnarok" and "Black Panther," as well as the "Avengers: Infinity War" sizzle reel they showed at D23 the week before. If I were to call any presentation the overall winner of SDCC 2017 it would be this one. But that's usually the case.

]]>
Winner -- Marvel Film Comic-Con is kinda hellish in a lot of ways, but Marvel's Saturday-night showcase never fails to make it all seem worth it. This year was definitely not an exception, with fans in Hall H being treated to spectacular and really substantial clips from "Thor: Ragnarok" and "Black Panther," as well as the "Avengers: Infinity War" sizzle reel they showed at D23 the week before. If I were to call any presentation the overall winner of SDCC 2017 it would be this one. But that's usually the case.

]]>
Winner -- "The Defenders"

Netflix really treated the fans in Hall H on Friday night, premiering the entire first episode of "The Defenders." And it was good! After a long day of mostly uneventful Hall H panels, it was a very welcome surprise.

]]>
Winner -- "The Defenders"

Netflix really treated the fans in Hall H on Friday night, premiering the entire first episode of "The Defenders." And it was good! After a long day of mostly uneventful Hall H panels, it was a very welcome surprise.

]]>
Winner -- Netflix

Aside from "The Defenders," Netflix showed off four minutes of its upcoming "Punisher" series and treated the Hall H crowd to some meaty clips from the films "Bright" and "Death Note." Oh, and they also held a screening of "Death Note" on Thursday night. Netflix really brought its A-game to Comic-Con this year.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1679252" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Stranger Things’ Comic-Con Trailer Is a ‘Thriller’ (Video)" target=""]

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Winner -- Netflix

Aside from "The Defenders," Netflix showed off four minutes of its upcoming "Punisher" series and treated the Hall H crowd to some meaty clips from the films "Bright" and "Death Note." Oh, and they also held a screening of "Death Note" on Thursday night. Netflix really brought its A-game to Comic-Con this year.

 

 

[contextual-link post_id="1679252" title="Also Read" link_title="‘Stranger Things’ Comic-Con Trailer Is a ‘Thriller’ (Video)" target=""]

]]>
Loser -- "Game of Thrones"

Normally, Comic-Con takes place a months after the season has ended, meaning there isn't usually anything meaty for "Game of Thrones" to bring. We'd hoped that this year would be different, since the panel took place a week into season 7. But aside from a new short trailer, this year's "Game of Thrones" panel was as insubstantial as always. But, hey, at least Alfie Allen brought a puppy who is a good boy and won everything yes he did yes he did!

]]>
Loser -- "Game of Thrones"

Normally, Comic-Con takes place a months after the season has ended, meaning there isn't usually anything meaty for "Game of Thrones" to bring. We'd hoped that this year would be different, since the panel took place a week into season 7. But aside from a new short trailer, this year's "Game of Thrones" panel was as insubstantial as always. But, hey, at least Alfie Allen brought a puppy who is a good boy and won everything yes he did yes he did!

]]>
Loser -- Actual Comics Fans

It's a cliche to complain that 'Comic-Con isn't about the comics anymore' but this is different. After 44 years as one of SDCC's biggest sellers, legendary retailer Mile High Comics skipped the 2017 event.

Owner Chuck Rozanski cited rising costs imposed on vendors, stricter safety rules and celebrity-packed offsite events for reducing foot traffic, and profit, inside the con. The absence of one of the event's original participants was a significant, and unfortunate, milestone.

]]>
Loser -- Actual Comics Fans

It's a cliche to complain that 'Comic-Con isn't about the comics anymore' but this is different. After 44 years as one of SDCC's biggest sellers, legendary retailer Mile High Comics skipped the 2017 event.

Owner Chuck Rozanski cited rising costs imposed on vendors, stricter safety rules and celebrity-packed offsite events for reducing foot traffic, and profit, inside the con. The absence of one of the event's original participants was a significant, and unfortunate, milestone.

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Trump Is Taking a Page From the ‘Real Housewives’ Playbook, Andy Cohen Says http://www.thewrap.com/trump-is-taking-a-page-from-the-real-housewives-playbook-andy-cohen-says/ http://www.thewrap.com/trump-is-taking-a-page-from-the-real-housewives-playbook-andy-cohen-says/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 17:43:34 +0000 Tim Kenneally http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679907 Apparently, when it comes to Donald Trump, you can take the boy out of reality TV, but you can’t take reality TV out of the boy. At least that’s what Andy Cohen seems to think.

After President Trump’s latest Twitter missive on Monday, “Real Housewives” executive producer Andy Cohen weighed in to opine that the chief executive and former “Apprentice” host was taking his cue from the Bravo franchise.

“HOUSEWIVES PLAYBOOK: keep repeating the same lines over and over and over til someone listens (See: Aviva, bookgate; Kim D, strippergate),” Cohen wrote.

The “Watch What Happens Live” host was reacting to a tweet in which Trump declared, “Drain the Swamp should be changed to Drain the Sewer – it’s actually much worse than anyone ever thought, and it begins with the Fake News!”

For those lucky enough to have avoided Trump’s rhetoric, “fake news” has been a favorite rallying cry of his in response to media reports about, well, just about anything that puts him in a negative light.

In a multi-part Twitter missive Monday, Trump also took aim at Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer and his former rival in the 2016 presidential election, Hillary Clinton.

“After 1 year of investigation with Zero evidence being found, Chuck Schumer just stated that “Democrats should blame ourselves,not Russia,” Trump wrote, later adding, “So why aren’t the Committees and investigators, and of course our beleaguered A.G., looking into Crooked Hillarys crimes & Russia relations?”

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Trump Gives Washington a New Nickname: 'Drain the Sewer'

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Anthony Scaramucci Deletes Old Tweets That Bash Trump, GOP Policies

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‘Game of Thrones’ 101: Who’s Left in House Martell? http://www.thewrap.com/game-of-thrones-101-whos-left-in-house-martell/ http://www.thewrap.com/game-of-thrones-101-whos-left-in-house-martell/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 17:41:57 +0000 Phil Hornshaw http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1674325 In “Game of Thrones,” the southern land of Dorne a place that gets shown too often, but its people are already playing a big role in Season 7

That’s because in Season 6, the country underwent a coup. The people who seized power, collectively known as the Sand Snakes, ravaged the Great House that rules Dorne and plan to wage war on the Lannisters in King’s Landing.

Here’s a quick rundown of the state of House Martell, the Great House in charge of Dorne.

Also Read: 15 Best Fight Scenes From ‘Game of Thrones’ (Photos)

The most famous member of House Martell was Prince Oberyn (Pedro Pascal), otherwise known as the Red Viper of Dorne. He was a formidable warrior who also got around quite a bit. He traveled to King’s Landing in Season 3 with his paramour, Ellaria Sand (Indira Varma), and got himself killed fighting in a trial by combat against the Mountain.

In response, Ellaria and Oberyn’s bastard daughters, who are known as a group as the Sand Snakes because their bastard last name is “Sand” (like how in the North, the bastard name is “Snow”) and because they’re deady, decided to get their revenge on the Lannisters. Oberyn has eight bastard daughters, but only the eldest three appear in the show: Obara Sand (Keisha Castle-Hughes), Nymeria Sand (Jessica Henwick), and Tyene Sand (Rosabell Laurenti Sellers). Tyene is Ellaria’s daughter, but the other two have another mother.

Dorne was ruled by Prince Doran Martell (Alexander Siddig), Oberyn’s older brother, who was afflicted with gout and unable to do much. He favored peace with the Lannisters, and betrothed his son, Prince Trystane Martell (Toby Sebastian), to Myrcella Lannister (Nell Tiger Free), the daughter of Cersei (Lena Headey).

Also Read: 21 Big ‘Game of Thrones’ Fan Theories for Season 7 and Beyond (Photos)

But when Prince Doran refused to commit Dorne to war against King’s Landing, Ellaria poisoned Myrcella as part of her revenge on the Lannisters. Ellaria then assassinated Prince Doran, and Obara killed Trystane. With Doran, Trystane, and Oberyn all dead, there are no male to legally continue the Martell family line. Even though the Sand Snakes all technically have Martell blood, they’re not legally recognized as members of the familiy.

With Doran and Trystane dead, Ellaria now runs Dorne, and at the end of Season 6, she joined in an alliance with Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) against the Lannisters. In the early episodes of Season 7, Daenerys laid out her plan for war against the Lannisters, and sent Ellaria, Obara, Nymeria and Tyene to sail back to Dorne and get the Dornish army. The plan was for Dorne and House Tyrell to besiege King’s Landing.

But Ellaria and the Sand Snakes were intercepted on their way back to Dorne by Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbæk) and his massive Iron Fleet. Ellaria and Tyene were captured, but Euron killed both Obara and Nymeria, hanging the Sand Snakes from his ship as trophies.

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Game of Thrones' 101: Who's Left in House Tyrell?

'Game of Thrones' 101: How Many Stark Direwolves Are Left?

'Game of Thrones' 101: Who's Left from House Bolton?

'Game of Thrones' 101: Who's Left from House Baratheon?

Every Important Dead 'Game of Thrones' Character You Forgot About (Photos)

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Hulu Lands Google Exec Kelly Campbell as Chief Marketing Officer http://www.thewrap.com/hulu-chief-marketing-officer-kelly-campbell/ http://www.thewrap.com/hulu-chief-marketing-officer-kelly-campbell/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 17:40:44 +0000 Ryan Gajewski http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679903 Hulu has named Kelly Campbell as chief marketing officer, the company announced on Monday.

Campbell will oversee Hulu’s overall marketing plans across SVOD and Live TV services, along with heading up the marketing, publicity and research divisions. She joins the senior management team for Hulu later in the summer.

“Kelly is a respected, data-driven marketing expert who has consistently proven her ability to develop effective strategies and build strong, high-performing teams,” said Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins in a statement.

“With her deep background in performance marketing and in building strong connections between brands and their consumers, she’s going to be an invaluable addition to Hulu as we enter the next chapter of our business,” he continued.

Campbell previously served as managing director of global growth marketing for Google Cloud. Prior to that role, she held multiple senior marketing roles within Google. 

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Hulu Hires AMC's Joel Stillerman, Exec Behind 'Mad Men' and 'The Walking Dead,' as Chief Content Officer

Sarah Silverman to Hulu Advertisers: Investing in My New Show 'Is Probably a Terrible Idea'

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Universal First to $4 Billion at Global Box Office in 2017 http://www.thewrap.com/universal-first-4-billion-global-box-office-2017/ http://www.thewrap.com/universal-first-4-billion-global-box-office-2017/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 17:30:15 +0000 Jeremy Fuster http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679902 Following the successful launch of “Girls Trip” over the weekend ($30.4 million), Universal Pictures has become the first studio to hit the $4 billion mark at the global box office in 2017. It’s the second time in the studio’s history that it has hit this milestone within a year period. Nearly $2.8 billion of its 2017 global cume came from overseas markets.

Universal has made it to this point thanks to a mix of original titles, sequels and homegrown franchises. The lion’s share of the revenue came from “The Fate of the Furious,” which has grossed $1.23 billion worldwide. Another big moneymaking sequel for the company is “Despicable Me 3,” which currently stands at $732.5 million worldwide. It’s one of two films from Illumination that has brought in huge revenue for the studio. The other, “Sing,” was released in late December 2016 but earned $117 million domestically in 2017.

While “DM3” and “Fate of the Furious” have been major revenue drivers overseas, Universal owes much of its domestic success this year to its first-look deal with Blumhouse, which has yielded two low-budget hits in “Get Out” and “Split.” Released early this year, the two horror films combined for $313.5 million domestically against a combined budget of $13.5 million. “Fifty Shades Darker” has also been a solid domestic return, making $114.3 million. Combined with the two franchise titles, Universal has just under $1.15 billion in domestic gross in 2017, second among all studios.

In 2017, Universal has been No. 1 at the domestic box office for eight weekends, the international box office for eight weekends, and the worldwide box office for six. This past weekend, “Girls Trip” was No. 2 with a $30.4 million opening, the highest for a live-action comedy this year.

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‘Flip or Flop’ Contractor Gives Health Update Amid Cancer Battle: ‘I’m Going to Beat This’ http://www.thewrap.com/flip-or-flop-contractor-gives-update-amid-cancer-battle-im-going-to-beat-this-video/ http://www.thewrap.com/flip-or-flop-contractor-gives-update-amid-cancer-battle-im-going-to-beat-this-video/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 17:09:23 +0000 Tim Kenneally http://www.thewrap.com/?p=1679882 “Flip or Flop” contractor Frank “the Tank” Miller is keeping his spirits up amid an ongoing battle with cancer.

“Flip or Flop” star Tarek El Moussa posted a message from Miller, who’s battling multiple forms of cancer, on Sunday, in which Miller revealed the circumstances surrounding his recent hospitalization.

The contractor remained upbeat about his future, declaring, “I’m still fighting the good fight. I’m going to beat this sh-te.”

In a message posted via El Moussa’s Instagram account, Miller said that he experienced “excruciating stomach pain” that led to his hospitalization.

Miller added that he will undergo surgery this week.

“Hey Tarek. A little update on my condition. Last Friday I had excruciating stomach and chest pain so I went to ER at UCI and they admitted me,” Miller said. “The diagnosis after a bunch of tests is Pancreatitis and Gallstones with some problems with my Colon. I’m going to have surgery on Wednesday or Thursday to remove my gallbladder.”

Miller concluded, “I will be in hospital for a few days and hope to be home by the weekend. I’m still fighting the good fight. I’m going to beat this sh-te. I hope all is well with you and the family. Love you brother.”

Last week, El Moussa shared news that Miller had been rushed to the hospital, adding, “His body is shutting down.”

“Please please pray for Frank!! This amazing man made this video a week ago for all the amazing people who have supported him and also donated,” El Moussa wrote. “As I write this he is being rushed to the hospital so we need to all pray for him. His body is shutting down and I know he would love to be read the supportive comments from his fans and motivate him to fight!”

“He’s not doing well so now is the time to let him hear how much he is LOVED,” the star of the HGTV reality series continued. “Frank I love you like a brother man I really do.”

In May, El Moussa told fans that the contractor has been fighting “multiple cancers.”

In his own message, the contractor said that his cancer “has grown and spread” to the point where it has become inoperable.

“After three cycles of radiation and chemo the cancer has grown and spread. Now it’s inoperable due to being too close to my carotid artery,” the contractor wrote.

Later in the month, the contractor offered an update on his condition, saying that he was undergoing a tracheotomy after his airway began to close.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to raise money for Miller’s treatment.

Here is an update straight from Frank. The support he has been receiving by you great people keeps motivating him to continue his fight. We all ❤️ you Frank!!!…………………………………………………………….Hey Tarek. A little update on my condition. Last Friday I had excruciating stomach and chest pain so I went to ER at UCI and they admitted me. The diagnosis after a bunch of tests is Pancreatitis and Gallstones with some problems with my Colon. I’m going to have surgery on Wednesday or Thursday to remove my gallbladder. I will be in hospital for a few days and hope to be home by the weekend. I’m still fighting the good fight. I’m going to beat this shite. I hope all is well with you and the family. Love you brother

A post shared by Tarek El Moussa (@therealtarekelmoussa) on

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'Flip or Flop' Contractor Frank 'the Tank' Rushed to Hospital Amid Cancer Battle

'Flip or Flop' Star Tarek El Moussa Talks About His 'Bad Decisions' (Video)

'Flip or Flop' Fans React to 'Awkward' Return of HGTV Series

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