TheWrap Covering Hollywood 2017-05-26T00:09:17Z WordPress Brian Flood <![CDATA[Is Fox News Cleaning Up Its Act? Or Just Trying to Make the Murdochs Richer?]]> 2017-05-25T23:58:21Z 2017-05-25T23:57:50Z Fox News has taken drastic steps to clean up its image in recent months: Dumping employees accused of sexual harassment and racist comments, backing down from a right-wing conspiracy theory, and siding with a mainstream media reporter over a Republican candidate accused of body-slamming him.

Even Monica Lewinsky, who wrote in a recent New York Times op-ed that the network and founder Roger Ailes made her life a “nightmare” in the ’90s, said there  are “positive signs that the younger generation at Fox — James and Lachlan Murdoch — seem to want to change the culture Mr. Ailes created.”

But Lewinsky is one of many who is a little skeptical about the networks’ motives for changing its ways. She and others believe Rupert Murdoch and his sons, Lachlan and James, might be cleaning up their corporate culture only to impress British media regulator Ofcom as parent company 21st Century Fox seeks its blessing to take over UK pay-TV giant Sky.

Loyola journalism professor Kate Pickert said Fox News’ recent moves are “all high-profile and could be designed to neutralize public criticisms” in the middle of an important business deal. But she feels the company had no choice but to change after sexual harassment allegations drove out Ailes last year and Bill O’Reilly last month. (Ailes died earlier this month.)

“The network deserves credit for acting, but it only did so with Bill O’Reilly because the New York Times wrote about old cases and advertisers began boycotting his show. What matters more is the work environment for Fox News employees. We really don’t know if this is changing and it will be some time before we can judge whether there has been a culture shift that impacts employees,” Pickert told TheWrap.

A company insider noted, however, that Ailes was out within weeks of public allegations of sexual harassment against him last summer — before the Sky News deal was in play. A recent statement by 21st Century Fox said that the “transformed leadership at Fox News brings it closer in line with a long-held commitment to a diverse workplace.”

But not all the developments have been behind the scenes. This week, Fox News notably retracted an article about murdered Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich that fueled baseless right-wing theories. Sean Hannity, the network’s biggest star, objected and kept fueling the theory until finally agreeing not to talk about it anymore on his Fox News show.

Meanwhile, though Fox News has long been accused of a Republican slant, a Fox News crew sided with a Guardian reporter, Ben Jacobs, who said Montana congressional candidate Greg Gianforte “body slammed” him on Monday. Gianforte’s campaign derided Jacobs as a “liberal journalist.”

But Pickert said the network’s changes to its culture aren’t likely to result in sweeping changes to its coverage.

“As far as Fox News’ coverage, I don’t see that shifting dramatically anytime soon. The network still occupies a highly profitable niche, appealing to viewers who want a news and opinion perspective that leans right,” Pickert said.

Fox News declined to comment for this story.

Ailes ran Fox News for 20 years but stepped down last year after a series of sexual harassment allegations that he denied up until his death last week. In the 10 months since he resigned, Fox News has fired Bob Beckel over an accusation that he made an offensive remark to an African-American employee, parted ways with a longtime executive accused of racist comments, fired cash cow O’Reilly and accepted the resignation of former co-president Bill Shine, who was accused in some of the lawsuits plaguing the company of permitting a culture that included harassment and discrimination. (O’Reilly and Shine have denied the accusations. Beckel has not responded to requests for comment.)

Fox News has also added female executivesordered sensitivity training for all employees, brought in human resources guru Kevin Lord to make sure things run smoothly going forward and announced plans to gut the entire floor of offices occupied by Ailes to create a state-of-the-art open newsroom as part of a renovation of its New York City headquarters.

Sean Hannity, who is essentially the last of the old guard, recently tweeted that it would be the “total end” of Fox News “as we know it” if the network lost Shine. Then the network lost Shine.

When Shine, a direct protégé of Ailes, stepped down, a number of conservative sites posted articles with headlines such as, “Is Fox about to become CNN?” Another worried about “the left-wing takeover of Fox News” and suggested Lachlan and James Murdoch are significantly more liberal than their father.

The Hill media columnist Joe Concha told TheWrap he doesn’t really care why Fox News is cleaning up its image. What’s important is that it is.

“Maybe the executives don’t like that the company is being portrayed in the media as having this horrible culture. Yes, there is obviously a business aspect to this but also, what choice does 21st Century Fox have? I seem them as taking real steps here,” Concha said.

Fox bid $14.4 billion for all of Sky, of which it already owns a 39 percent stake. The deal was cleared by the European Commission earlier this year but remains a sensitive subject after a previous attempt in 2011 was blocked by a phone hacking scandal at one of the Murdoch family’s British newspapers. The scandal revealed close ties between politicians, police and the employees of the paper.

It remains to be seen if Fox News plans to continue to work on its culture if the Sky Deal goes through. The only people who know for sure are named Murdoch.

Matt Donnelly <![CDATA[Paris Jackson Mistaken for Homeless Person on Set of Feature Film Debut]]> 2017-05-25T23:49:28Z 2017-05-25T23:49:28Z Paris Jackson was mistaken for a homeless person on the set of her now movie, the actress said.

The daughter of late pop legend Michael Jackson has been hard at work on an untitled Amazon Studios project, directed by Nash Edgerton. Jackson arrived to set on Thursday and was sitting outside of her makeup trailer, but tweeted that a production staffer had tried to shoo her away.

“One of the first people on set, sitting in the parking lot and this dude comes up to me and says homeless people aren’t allowed in this area,” Jackson wrote.

And they say actors are never on time.

“I said, ‘Oh, sorry, I’m waiting for hair and makeup, should I wait elsewhere? Also, why do you assume I’m homeless,” she continued, also uploading a photo of her boho chic uniform of harem pants and a midriff top.

Jackson landed the role of an “edgy 20-year-old” in Edgerton’s ensemble drama led by David Oyelowo, who plays a ho-hum business man who slips into a life of crime. Nash’s brother Joel Edgerton, Amanda Seyfried, Charlize Theron, Yul Vazquez, Thandie Newton and Sharlto Copley costar.

This is Jackson’s first movie, though she has appeared on Fox’s “Star,” created by Lee Daniels. She is repped by WME and Stiefel Entertainment.


Sean Burch <![CDATA[FBI Investigating Possible Jared Kushner-Russia Connection]]> 2017-05-25T23:44:22Z 2017-05-25T23:44:22Z FBI investigators are looking into a number of meetings between Jared Kushner — President Trump’s son-in-law and one of his closest advisors in the White House — and Russian officials as part of its investigation into Russia’s interference with the 2016 election, according to the Washington Post.

Kushner is not the central focus of the investigation, but his meetings with a Russian banker and an ambassador in December 2016 have piqued the interest of the FBI, according to the report.

Beyond a possible connection between the Russian government and the Trump campaign, investigators are also checking on potential “financial crimes,” the Washington Post states.

More to come …

Ashley Boucher <![CDATA[Watch The Trailer For Netflix’s Boxing Documentary ‘Counterpunch’ (VIDEO)]]> 2017-05-25T23:29:04Z 2017-05-25T23:29:04Z Director Jay Bulger is taking a deep dive into the world of boxing in Netflix’s latest documentary. The film follows several young boxers who are trying to make it in the industry and restore the sport to its glory days of Mohammed Ali and other famous boxers.

Bulger happens to have been an amateur boxer himself. “Many years after hanging up the gloves, I set out to capture the state of boxing in America, following three boxers, in three different chapters of a boxing career. When combined, I hope they provide a complete picture of the sport today,” he said in a press release. Bulger also directed the documentaries “Beware of Mr. Baker” and “We Are.”

“Boxing is all about perception,” the voice over in the trailer says. “Counterpunch” promises to give viewers a peek inside of that world. The documentary premieres at the Los Angeles Film Festival on June 15.

Ryan Gajewski <![CDATA[‘Law and Order: SVU’ Lands ‘Chicago Justice’ EP as Showrunner]]> 2017-05-26T00:06:18Z 2017-05-25T23:25:38Z “Law and Order: SVU” has tapped Michael Chernuchin as its new showrunner heading into the venerable NBC procedural’s 19th season, TheWrap has learned.

Chernuchin was an executive producer on NBC’s “Chicago Justice,” which recently got the axe. He previously served as showrunner for the original “Law and Order.”

Rick Eid, who was the “SVU” showrunner for Season 18, exited the show to replace Matt Olmstead as the showrunner of “Chicago P.D.” The “Law and Order” and “Chicago” franchises were both created by Dick Wolf.

“SVU” celebrated its 400th episode in February and is currently the longest-running drama series on broadcast TV. Its current cast includes Mariska Hargitay, Ice-T, Kelli Giddish and Peter Scanavino.

The series hails from Universal Television and counts Wolf, Hargitay, Julie Martin, Arthur W. Forney andPeter Jankowski as executive producers.

Wrap Staff <![CDATA[Olympian Kerri Walsh Jennings, ‘Black-ish’ Star Yara Shahidi at TheWrap’s Power Women Breakfast San Francisco 2017 (Photos)]]> 2017-05-25T23:58:05Z 2017-05-25T23:21:03Z 0 Carli Velocci <![CDATA[Netflix Cancels UK Premieres of ‘Orange Is the New Black,’ ‘Glow’ After Manchester Attack]]> 2017-05-25T22:57:25Z 2017-05-25T22:57:25Z Netflix has canceled the London premieres of “Orange is the New Black” Season 5 and the Alison Brie wrestling comedy “Glow” in response to the Manchester attack.

“Following the terrible events in Manchester on Monday night, we have decided to cancel our special screening of “Orange is the New Black” and “Glow” on Tuesday, May 30,” a Netflix spokesperson said Thursday. “Our thoughts are with all of those affected by this tragedy.”

An individual with knowledge of the matter told TheWrap that the decision to cancel the premieres was not made in response to any request from local authorities.

Since the attack, several other entertainment  events set to be held in the country have been canceled. Ariana Grande postponed her tour in response to the attack that killed 22 people and injured dozens more just after her Monday concert at the 22,000-seat Manchester Arena.

Universal Pictures called off its “Mummy” London premiere, while the “Wonder Woman” London premiere was also canceled.

Grande’s “Dangerous Woman” tour had been scheduled to resume Thursday at London’s O2 Arena, but the tour will now be delayed at least through June 5.

“Orange is the New Black” is set to premiere on June 9 while “Glow” will be released on June 23.

Tim Kenneally <![CDATA[‘Flip or Flop’ Star Tarek El Moussa Says His Stepfather Is Now Cancer-Free]]> 2017-05-25T22:43:19Z 2017-05-25T22:43:19Z Some good news for the El Moussa family, after a year that’s seen more than a little bit of tumult for the reality-TV family.

“Flip or Flop” star Tarek El Moussa took to Instagram late Wednesday to deliver the encouraging news that his stepfather is now free of cancer.

“CANCER FREE!!!! As many of you know my step father battled the same cancer I did … and now, after a few rounds of chemo, he is cancer free and in remission!!” the HGTV star wrote, in a post that included a photo of his stepfather playing in the water with El Moussa’s children, Brayden and Taylor.

“He’s gaining weight… getting his hair back… and back to his old self. Cancer is so scary and the best thing a cancer survivor can hear is in remission!!!! The grandkids love him so much.”

CANCER FREE!!!! As many of you know my step father battled the same cancer I did… and now, after a few rounds of chemo, he is cancer free and in remission!! He’s gaining weight… getting his hair back… and back to his old self. Cancer is so scary and the best thing a cancer survivor can hear is in remission!!!! The grandkids love him so much❤️❤️❤️

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

Cancer has played a distressingly prominent role in El Moussa’s life. The “Flip or Flop” star has in the past suffered from both thyroid cancer and testicular cancer, though in January the reality TV star shared with fans that he himself was still cancer-free after receiving treatment.

Earlier this month, the ugly specter of cancer popped up once again, with El Moussa telling fans that “Flip or Flop” contractor Frank “The Tank” is battling inoperable cancer.

El Moussa and his estranged wife Christina, who rose to fame as the stars of the HGTV series “Flip or Flop,” gained further attention when they announced their split on Dec. 12, saying their decision to end their relationship largely stemmed from a domestic incident in May 2016 that involved a gun and resulted in Orange County police getting involved.

The O.C. Sheriff’s Dept. told TheWrap that Christina El Moussa was “crying and shaking” during the incident, while her husband was seen by witnesses to “run out of his back door, jump over his fence and walk northbound into the hiking trails of the Chino Hills State Park.”

Tarek El Moussa filed for divorce in January.

Though the couple’s marriage is en route to the dustbin of history, the El Moussas’ working relationship remains on track. In April, HGTV announced that “Flip or Flop” will be supersized to 20 episodes for its next season, which will premiere in December.

Matt Donnelly <![CDATA[STX Wins Amy Schumer’s ‘I Feel Pretty’ for US Distribution]]> 2017-05-25T23:40:56Z 2017-05-25T22:28:22Z STX is sitting pretty now that they’re in business with Amy Schumer.

The young mini-major acquired domestic distribution rights to the comedy out of Cannes. The title was repped by UTA Independent Film Group lead Rena Ronson. The package will begin shooting this July in Boston.

Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein, screenwriters of films like “Never Been Kissed” and “How to Be Single,” make their directorial debut here.

The announcement, made by STXFilms Chiarman Adam Fogelson and production head Sam Brown, also disclosed the project’s logline for the first time. Admittedly, it sounds awesome:

In the comedy, an ordinary woman who struggles with feelings of insecurity and inadequacy on a daily basis wakes from a fall believing she is suddenly the most beautiful and capable woman on the planet. With this newfound confidence she is empowered to live her life fearlessly and flawlessly, but what will happen when she realizes her appearance never changed?

Wonderland Sound and Vision’s McG and Mary Viola will produce with Voltage Pictures’ Alissa Phillips, Dominic Rustam and Nicolas Chartier. Schumer is also a producer. Schumer collaborator Kevin Kane will co-produce.  Jonathan Deckter will executive produce for Voltage.

Amy Schumer


See Amy Schumer's latest POWER MOVE.



“Amy is a spectacularly talented comedienne and actress and this story could not be more perfectly suited to her incisive observational skills and humor,” Fogelson said.

Jeremy Fuster <![CDATA[‘Casino Royale’ Composer Reflects on Chris Cornell’s Essential James Bond Theme Song]]> 2017-05-25T22:26:32Z 2017-05-25T22:26:32Z James Bond themes, by their very nature, are polarizing things. Just as each generation has an actor that was “their” Bond, each fan has a Bond theme that first lured them into the luxurious, mysterious and dangerous world of 007. Some were attracted to the elegance of Shirley Bassey, others to the gentle romance of Carly Simon or the haunting tones of Adele.

But among those hits sits a Bond theme that, while not as instantly recognizable as the “Goldfingers” and “Live and Let Dies” of the world, has proven to be essential to the series by introducing fans to the raw attitude that Daniel Craig harnessed to bring Bond into the 21st century. That song is “You Know My Name,” written and performed by the late Chris Cornell, whose death on May 17 has been ruled a suicide by hanging.

Back in the mid 2000s, Bond was at a crossroads. Jason Bourne had captivated audiences with his harder, grittier approach to spy films, while the over-the-top stunts of Bond’s “Die Another Day” just weren’t cutting it anymore. There were even questions whether Bond’s brand of adventure had any sort of place in modern pop culture. Enter Craig and 2006’s “Casino Royale,” a film that arrived in the midst of intense skepticism as naysayers lambasted blonde-haired Craig’s casting for not matching the “tall, dark and suave” description they claimed was essential to Ian Fleming’s Bond. Instead, “Royale” showed Craig understood what Fleming’s Bond was really about: a violent, cold character whose distrust masks a soul that has been slowly deadened by the dangerous job he has chosen to embrace for Queen and Country.

Composer David Arnold, who wrote the score for five Bond films from 1997 to 2008, felt that a movie that explores the tragic events that made Bond who he is needed a theme that embodied Craig’s gritty performance in musical form. Just as Paul McCartney’s “Live and Let Die” heralded the start of Roger Moore’s run as Bond with a driving rock tune that departed from the crooners of Sean Connery’s era, the theme for “Royale” had to be worlds away from the ladies of pop like Tina Turner and Madonna that were brought on for Pierce Brosnan’s films. So it was that Sony Music selected Cornell to become the first male singer to write a Bond theme in 20 years.

“We needed someone who could sing the way Daniel acted,” Arnold said in a phone interview with TheWrap. “It had to be Chris; there was really no one else.”

Shortly after signing on, Soundgarden’s Cornell traveled to the set in Prague to meet with Arnold and the film’s director, Martin Campbell. After reading the script and watching Craig in action via a rough cut of the film, Arnold and Cornell sat down to compare ideas for the song. They agreed that the song couldn’t be called “Casino Royale” and decided that the title “You Know My Name” would fit with Bond’s ego, an element of his character that plays a major factor in the story.

“When I was working on ‘Die Another Day,’ I had an idea for a song called ‘I Will Return,’ because at the end of every Bond movie there’s a little card that comes up that says ‘James Bond Will Return,'” Arnold said. “What I liked about ‘Casino Royale’ is that there this arrogance to Daniel’s Bond […] We all know who James Bond is, so I liked playing with the idea that he assumes that everyone already knows who he is. There’s an arrogance to that, but ‘You Know My Name’ is also a warning, to know who you’re messing with.”

Cornell and Arnold then spent 10 days apart writing the song, with Cornell writing lyrics based on his interpretations of Craig’s performance. When they got back together, Arnold found that only a few structural tweaks were needed to mesh Cornell’s ideas with his own. He says it was one of the easiest projects he ever did during his Bond career, something that he credits to Cornell’s talent.

“Chris, as well as being an extraordinary singer, is also an extraordinary writer. He’s got great ideas for melody. I think he’s got a great way with a lyric; very darkly poetic and saying things that haven’t been said before in a Bond film. His ability to answer the demands of writing for something like this and doing it with such ease and grace was such a huge relief because you don’t know what you’re going to get when you go into a studio with someone you don’t know that well.”

In the film, Cornell and Arnold’s creation makes its entrance after the darkest cold opening ever made for a Bond film. In a flashback filmed in black and white and with the shadows and camera angles of classic film noir, we see Bond earn his status as a 00 agent by killing two people in cold blood, one with a bullet to the head in a shadowy office and the other with his bare hands after a grisly bathroom fight. The camera focuses on the disheveled Bond’s face after he commits the deed, clearly showing that taking a life for the first time has shaken him.

Then, color splashes onto the screen for the first time in the form of the series’ iconic bloody gunbarrel sequence. Arnold’s bombastic orchestration makes its entrance; and as the opening credits start to roll, Cornell asks the audience a question Bond just faced in that bathroom: “If you take a life, do you know what you’ll give? Odds are, you won’t like what it is.”

Cornell’s lyrics establish a theme that has run through the four movies of Craig’s career: to live the life of James Bond is to live in a world filled with exotic locales, cars and women; but it’s a life that forces you to become a cold killer and puts a target on your head. As Arnold described it, “You Know My Name” is a warning. A warning that Bond may not be the man that other men want to be (“Arm yourself because no one else here will save you”) and women want to be with (“When the storm arrives, would you be seen with me/By the merciless eyes I’ve deceived?”).

Cornell sings these lyrics with a voice that alternates between Bond-style crooning in the verses and a chorus that lets him show off his propulsive rock falsetto, as guitars duel with horns as they blare leitmotifs. Accompanying the song is a title sequence from Daniel Kleinman that replaces the usual silhouettes of curvaceous women with outlines of Bond’s targets getting slain by guns that shoot diamonds, clubs and spades. Through casino imagery, the message is once again sent: this Bond is a bruiser.

Reflecting on the song 11 years later, Arnold considers it one of his favorite works, enjoying how he and Cornell were able to make a theme that feels like a natural extension of the original Bond theme. He says that when he performs “You Know My Name” live with an orchestra, he immediately follows with the classic theme from “Dr. No,” a transition made seamless by the horn blasts that connect the songs together. Arnold had a performance in Dublin the day after Cornell’s death, turning the show into an impromptu tribute.

“When we perform live, there’s a part where we do Bond stuff and I always finish with ‘You Know My Name.'” Arnold said. “So when we do it, it’s just the instrumentals because I always feel that if Chris isn’t singing it, I don’t think anyone else could. Sadly, now no one else can.”

This fall, Arnold will perform the “Casino Royale” score live during a screening at the Royal Albert Hall. Arnold had hoped that Cornell would be able to sing “You Know My Name” for Bond fans at the hallowed London venue. Instead, Arnold will dedicate the show to a singer that came to be a very close friend.

“Even though that was the only song we wrote together, I saw Chris a lot after that,” he said. “We’d meet and have dinner and he’d be doing a show and he’d ask me to come and perform the song. We performed it with Aerosmith at Hyde Park and at some of his solo shows at big venues in London. We met very regularly and it was such a shock when he got the news.”

“Whenever I think of Bond, I’m always going to think of Chris. He has a voice that can kick a wall down, and that’s just what Daniel Craig does in the film.”

Sean Burch <![CDATA[Mark Zuckerberg’s ‘Best Memory’ From Harvard Isn’t Facebook]]> 2017-05-25T22:23:50Z 2017-05-25T22:23:11Z While giving his commencement speech, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg drew fawning “aws” from the crowd when he shared his favorite memory from his time at Harvard University, and it wasn’t co-founding the world’s largest social media company.

“My best memory from Harvard is meeting Priscilla,” said Zuckerberg, referring to his wife, Priscilla Chan.

Zuckerberg joked about the nascent version of Facebook running into issues with Harvard administrators, with his parents driving up to help him pack because he was seemingly on the verge of being kicked out. His friends threw him a going away party, where he met Chan while waiting in line for the bathroom.

Zuck’s pickup line?

“I’m getting kicked out in three days, so we need to go on a date quickly.”

He wasn’t kicked out, but the world’s fifth richest man dropped out in the fall of 2005 to move to the Bay Area and focus on Facebook. Chan stayed at Harvard and graduated two years later.

“Priscilla is the most important person in my life, so you could still say it’s the most important thing I built in my time here,” said Zuckerberg.

Beatrice Verhoeven <![CDATA[‘Black-ish’ Star Yara Shahidi Talks ‘Revolution,’ Trump-Era ‘Regression’ at Power Women San Francisco (Exclusive Video)]]> 2017-05-25T22:18:42Z 2017-05-25T22:18:42Z “Black-ish” star Yara Shahidi said that the reaction to Donald Trump’s era of “regression” will  be its own powerful political movement in a talk that spoke to identity, youth and activism at TheWrap’s Power Women Breakfast in San Francisco on Thursday.

“The way I’ve always thought of things, every great revolution has occurred from a great regression — we are witnessing a regression that inspires a movement,” said Shahidi, speaking to a room of media and tech executives at the Dolby Laboratories headquarters.

Olympian and three-time gold medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings also spoke at the event along with digital entrepreneurs Lisa Sugar, Kendra Bracken-Ferguson and Kathleen Grace. The event trended on Twitter and was watched by thousands on Facebook livestream.

Yara Shahidi PWB SF 2017The 17-year-old actress stunned the audience with a political sophistication well beyond her years.

“So many people in this world, continuing now, have felt disenfranchised, and the issue that we have occurring over and over again is that when we give them the right to feel as though to come under the compass of what it means to be American or what it means to be a full citizen,” she went on.

“What we’re seeing right now with the current administration is slowly realizing, especially my generation, how important policy is,” she elaborated. “I think more than the cultural change that has to occur, there’s social change that has to occur. Policy has to change, so that we don’t live under the legal barriers that prevent us from being ourselves. That’s what I mean when I say the great regression that occur prompts progress.”

Shahidi grew up during the Obama Administration which she said “broke so many barriers.”

“Being around those people that are so aware at a young age and figuring out what to do with their platform is what inspires me especially given the current administration — it didn’t take much for us to mobilize,” she added. “Just to have that support network with what’s happening right now, it seems an inevitable thing that’s going to happen in which there will be change. I feel like what we’re witnessing right now is the amalgamation of multiple movements. We are no longer dealing with the separation of civil rights movement, with the woman’s liberation movement, with the LGBTQ movement, with the labor movement — we’re working with the amalgamation of all of it because what we have come to realize is that identity is what we are fighting for.”


Shahidi said identity should not be divided into compartments.

“You cannot separate one’s identity into multiple things but rather combine them together so that somebody can really fight for an opportunity that’s specific to who they are,” said Shahidi. “I am a young, black, Iranian woman, so rather than trying to divide my time between what I care about, what we’re witnessing right now in the revolution that’s occurring , I can stand proud and tall in who I am, rather than separating who I am into multiple pieces and appreciate the nuance of what happens when it comes together.”

Shahidi committed to Harvard University after “campaigning” for four years to get their attention, but Shahidi was also accepted to Stanford, Brown, NYU, UCLA and Yale, among others. She plans to major in Social Studies and African-American Studies and wants to head to Washington D.C. sometime in her future.

The Power Women Breakfast series brings together influential women of entertainment, media, technology and brands in key cities to network and connect. TheWrap has built a broad community of professional women who are decision makers and mothers, leaders and wives, innovators and activists. The franchise is now in four cities Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.

Kerri Walsh Jennings Sharon Waxman PWB SF 2017

San Francisco hosted its third Power Women Breakfast this year, with Kerri Walsh Jennings joining Shahidi on stage. The Olympic medalist and the professional beach volleyball player talked to TheWrap’s Editor-in-Chief Sharon Waxman about heading to the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo with a new partner, Nicole Branagh, after winning three gold medals with previous partner Misty May-Treanor and winning bronze last year with April Ross.

“I don’t believe in barriers,” she said. “I believe my heart will tell me [when to stop]. I pray that my body doesn’t give out — my body feels amazing. I’ve had five shoulder surgeries, I’ve been through a lot, my training is smarter and my diet is smarter in my recovery processes, and I have amazing trainers. I honestly pray for clarity that it’s clear when I’m done, my heart will tell me that, ‘Kerri, you’re done.'”

She continued, “My mission in the next four years is just grow in my sport — it’s such a beautiful, empowering sport for women, and the drive in this country, the opportunities this country survive on are huge and I want to take it to the next level … I want to beat the world.”

TheWrap’s Power Women Breakfast also featured a digital panel in which founder of PopSugar, Lisa Sugar, CEO of New Form Kathleen Grace and CEO of The Braintrust Kendra Bracken-Ferguson discussed the changes in media and technology. Bracken-Ferguson said that social networks will continue to evolve and we will continue to evolve and we will see them as a competitor to traditional news sources.

Kathleen Grace Kendra Bracken-Ferguson Lisa Sugar PWB SF 2017

“I have a theory about social networks in terms of how they evolve: I think we’re going to see more pop up,” Bracken-Ferguson said. “We’re already seeing it. They’re not going to go away. I think that when you look at the content that’s coming out of them and the technologies, they are media companies. Any time you can go with a social networking site and use it as your search engine and find content you wouldn’t otherwise be able to find, or content that is competing with the traditional news source, I think they are media channels… I think they are hubs, I think they are a wealth of information, they are a resource of eyeballs, but I think that as people as brands are looking to build their own communities, you have to think about what’s important and it’s the data.

The event was sponsored by Dolby and Creative Future. A charity auction raised money for Bay Kids Studios, a non-profit that helps sick children make films.

Sean Burch <![CDATA[Facebook Closed Captioning Screwed Up Facebook CEO’s Harvard Speech]]> 2017-05-25T22:11:26Z 2017-05-25T22:02:09Z Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has built a social media platform with more than two billion users, becoming the fifth richest person in the world in the process, but his company hasn’t built a perfect closed captioning system yet, apparently.

The Facebook closed captioning for Zuckerberg’s Harvard commencement speech went in full beta mode on Thursday, spitting out that “Ceceokok” — rather than “Facebook” — “wasn’t the first thing I built.”

It didn’t get much better from there, either.

Luckily for Zuck, he finally has that honorary doctorate from Harvard to fall back on if this tech thing doesn’t work out.

Wrap Staff <![CDATA[‘Amant Double’ Cannes Review: Festival Gets a Shot of Perverse Adrenaline]]> 2017-05-25T22:37:11Z 2017-05-25T21:52:46Z There comes a time — say, around Day 9 of a festival — where all the coffee in France can’t help the compounded exhaustion from more than a week of late nights, long days and dark, ponderous films.

And boy has Cannes learned that lesson well! Both of Thursday’s films gave sagging festivalgoers a lurid shot of adrenaline right in the heart. But when it comes to trashy fun, the outer-borough sleaze of the Safdie brothers’ “Good Time,” which screened for the press in the morning, simply cannot compete with the elegant Parisian perversity of Francois Ozon’s “Amant Double,” which did so in the evening.

Without overstating it, “Amant Double” (that’s French for “double lover”) is the silliest, most sordid and least tasteful film playing in the main competition this year — and it’s an absolute gem.

This tawdry erotic thriller finds young Claire (Marine Vacth) falling in love with her shrink, Paul (Jérémie Renier). After moving in with him, she finds out that Paul has a secret identical twin, Louis (Renier, obviously). Louis is also a shrink, and the always-levelheaded Claire does what anybody would do in such a chance situation: She begins a violent affair with one brother while living in contented domesticity with the other, all while trying to keep both relationships a secret. Of course!

Adapted liberally from Joyce Carol Oates’ “Lives of the Twins,” Ozon’s film also owes an awful lot to the work of Paul Verhoeven, Brian de Palma and David Cronenberg, and it knows it. “Amant Double” wears its references on its sleeves, and then takes off the sleeves, blows them up tenfold and parades them up and down the Croisette.

Like a mission statement for its over-the-top ambitions, the film opens with a sublimely pulpy match-cut, cutting from a gynecologists’ view of a vagina to an ophthalmologists’ view of an eye, and giving both body parts the exact same space in the frame. That got the room of jaded journalists on board from the start, and they cheered in approval as the film got even wilder as it went on (and yes, it goes places). Once over, it received warm and sustained applause.

It any other year, “Amant Double” would not be an awards contender, but I can see jury president Pedro Almodovar finding much to admire here. I still wouldn’t bank on the Palme d’Or, but a lower award wouldn’t be out of the question. That way, people can bank sophisticate points by telling their friends they’re off to see “that French film that won a prize in Cannes” and still get the ribald and salacious thrills “Fifty Shades of Grey” can only dream of delivering.

Ashley Boucher <![CDATA[Ariana Grande Concert Attack Inspires Young Feminists to ‘Stand Up to the Fear’]]> 2017-05-25T21:56:19Z 2017-05-25T21:48:01Z During the last moments of Ariana Grande’s concert Monday night, thousands of fans sang along to the pop star’s hit “One Last Time.” The lights were dimmed so that the whole stadium glowed blue. Ariana stood onstage in all white, with her signature high ponytail, and it was almost as if she were singing along with her fans, not the other way around. “One last time,” they all sang, “I need to be the one to take you home.”

For fans at the concert, and fans around the world, this song has taken on a new meaning. It has come to represent the memory of the 22 souls lost later that night, and a feeling of unity against the terrorism of the attack. There is a movement on Twitter among fans to get the song to No. 1 on iTunes as a sign of solidarity with the victims and against the attacker.

“We will not live in fear,” Grande fan Alfredo Flores posted on Thursday. “Terrorism will not strip us from this beautiful life; this beautiful life of joy and love.”

The attack has sparked a “renewed dedication” to the issue of female empowerment, said Kirsten Swinth, a professor at Fordham University and an expert on contemporary women’s issues, as evidenced by fans’ response on social media.

“The mix of Grande’s music and the crowd full of girls and women out in a public space celebrating their own freedom and independence certainly contradicts all that ISIS stands for and its ideology of women’s roles and place in society,” she told TheWrap.

ISIS atrocities against women and girls — including kidnappings and rape — have been widely documented. And while the terror group has not explicitly said the Manchester attack was one against women’s independence, the fact that the bombing took place at a concert by Grande — who has become a symbol for young female empowerment — has many people pondering what the act of terror means in the fight for women’s rights. Salon, Billboard and NPR have all published pieces expressing the idea that this particular attack felt different from all the rest, that it was one meant to dampen the confidence and independence of women and young girls.

The “forces of oppression and repression that want to deny women their freedom and place in the public sphere needs to be continually challenged and resisted,” Swinth said, recalling the “she persisted” comment made by Senator Mitch McConnell earlier this year, when Senator Elizabeth Warren continued to speak even after being asked to stand down on the Senate floor.

The phrase has turned from a disparaging remark to a rallying cry to champion powerful, confident women.

Grande has similarly been credited with transforming characteristics typically used to make fun of girls, like ultra-femininity and looking young, into empowering traits. As Joe Pareles and Joe Coscarelli wrote in The New York Times, Grande is “a modern woman who knows exactly what she wants.”

“One Last Time” is a song representative of much of Grande’s music. It tells the story of a girl who has lost her love to another, but wants one more night together. The girl in the song knows she’s being unreasonable, but she’s willing to fight for what she wants. “At least I’m being honest,” the lyrics go.

Mia Bloom, an expert on women and terrorism and a professor of communication at Georgia State University, said it’s important not to assume the motives behind the attack. “Yes, ISIS absolutely hates women, but they hate Western women and they hate Western men, and they hate the Muslim girls who would be at that concert,” she told TheWrap. “Whether or not this is about female empowerment, I just think this is about human empowerment.”

While ISIS supporters have not said the attack was specifically on girls, they do acknowledge that the attack was on young children. “As ISIS fanboys have been discussing the attack within their chatrooms, they’ve acknowledged that the target might be young children, but then the justification for this is dead children in Mosul [or Syria],” Bloom told TheWrap.

This week, several events have been canceled across Britain, including many of Grande’s European tour dates and the London premiere of “Wonder Woman” — both events highlighting strong women.

Warner Bros. did not cite a specific reason for why the premiere was canceled when TheWrap reached out. But the studio did issue a statement, saying, “Our thoughts are with those affected by the recent tragedy in the UK. In light of the current situation, we will not be proceeding with our plans for the ‘Wonder Woman’ premiere and junket activities in London.”

Heather Rosoff, an expert on risk and decision making around terrorism at the University of Southern California, said because details around the attack are still developing, security concerns are important to think about when it comes to entertainment events in the wake of an attack.

Bloom suspects that “canceling other events in Manchester is because the threat level went to critical.” She points out increasing evidence that ISIS’s claim of responsibility is valid, and that “there is a high suspicion that [attacker Salman Abedi] was part of a larger cell and there might have been other things planned.” And so canceling events “could be less about letting the terrorists win,” she told TheWrap.

Grande’s management team also released a statement saying that her tour dates have “been suspended until we can further assess the situation and pay our proper respects to those lost.”

Swinth told TheWrap that honoring the wishes of those who were most affected by the tragedy is important. But “if you were to ask me in a more philosophical way,” she said, “I don’t believe that canceling events in this context makes sense because I think we need to stand up to the fear and stand up to the oppression that’s embedded in this horrific attack.”

Matt Donnelly <![CDATA[Alec Baldwin Back for ‘Boss Baby 2’ With Universal, DreamWorks Animation]]> 2017-05-25T23:44:25Z 2017-05-25T21:43:44Z Universal Pictures and DreamWorks Animation is delivering another bossy baby with Alec Baldwin.

“Boss Baby 2,” a sequel to the animated sleeper hit, has been dated for March 26, 2021. Baldwin will return as voice lead on the project, based on Marla Frazee’s picture-book series.

The first film earned nearly $470 million worldwide, and defied all expectations with a triumphant $50 million opening weekend.

In the original, Baldwin plays a suit-and-tie-wearing infant who is dropped into a family. Tom McGrath directed, and co-stars included Miles Christopher Bakshi, Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow and Tobey Maguire. While it received a mixed 48 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, the film passed the audience test with an A- on CinemaScore.

There were several factors to account for the success, like a career-best likability factor for Baldwin, whose “Saturday Night Live” Trump impression had the whole country talking. He also released a memoir, and sat for a Vanity Fair cover story shot by Mark Seliger.

The Boss Baby


See The Boss Baby's latest POWER MOVE.



There was also an impressive marketing campaign — one that even referenced the live-action “Beauty and the Beast” (Goliath to its own David) it was opening against.

Sean Burch <![CDATA[Mark Zuckerberg Cries While Speaking of Undocumented Student During Harvard Speech (Video)]]> 2017-05-25T21:42:18Z 2017-05-25T21:42:18Z Mark Zuckerberg let his emotions overtake him in closing his commencement speech to Harvard grads of 2017 on Thursday, while recounting a conversation with a high school student who was an undocumented immigrant.

“He wasn’t sure if the country he calls home, the only one he’s known, was going to deny him his dream of going to college,” said the Facebook founder, who returned to Harvard to receive an honorary doctorate degree (he dropped out of school to focus on building his empire nearly 12 years ago).

“I can’t even say his name because I don’t want to put him at risk,” he added.

“Here is a young guy who has every reason to be cynical… (but) He wasn’t feeling sorry for himself. He has a greater sense of purpose.

“If a high school senior who doesn’t know what the future holds for him can do his part to move the world forward,” said Zuckerberg as he visibly held back tears, “we owe it to the world to do our part too.”

“Every generation expands the circle of who we consider one of us,” he concluded to applause.

Zuckerberg set a lighter tone earlier in the speech, exclaiming, “I love this place!,” before joking, “Let’s face it, you accomplished something I never could.”

His speech touched on a number of issues — including undocumented immigration, modernizing voting methods, and a universal basic income — but emphasized one topic in particular: how to “create a world where everyone has a sense of purpose.”

This was a lesson Zuckerberg said he found out “the hard way.” He told the audience about the early days of Facebook, where several companies wanted to buyout the budding social media empire. Several members of the Facebook braintrust wanted to sell, but Zuckerberg was vehemently against the idea.

“I believed in what we were doing, but I felt alone,” said Zuckerberg. “And worse, it was my fault — I wondered if I was just wrong, an imposter.”

Zuckerberg would prevail in not-selling the company, but his management team abandoned ship.

This moment highlighted for him the importance of fostering a “sense of purpose.” “…finding your purpose isn’t enough,” said Zuckerberg. “The challenge for us is to create a world where everyone has their own sense of purpose.”

Watch the full speech below:

Reid Nakamura <![CDATA[Glenn Weiss and Ricky Kirshner to Produce 2017 Emmys Broadcast]]> 2017-05-25T21:44:56Z 2017-05-25T21:30:26Z Glenn Weiss and Ricky Kirshner will produce the Emmys broadcast for the first time this year, CBS announced on Thursday.

The White Cherry Entertainment duo will serve as executive producers, with Weiss pulling double duty as director. The ceremony will be broadcast live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on Sunday, Sept. 17 on CBS.

Weiss and Kirshner have won multiple Emmys each for their experience producing live television events, including the Tony Awards for the last 13 years, the “Kennedy Center Honors,” “NFL Opening Kickoff” specials and “Super Bowl Halftime Shows,” the “Democratic National Convention,” “The Daytime Emmy Awards,” Presidential Inaugural Galas, the “Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular,” and others.

As previously announced, “The Late Show” host Stephen Colbert will host the ceremony 69th annual ceremony. Chris Licht, executive producer of “The Late Show” is a producer.

“Glenn and Ricky have done outstanding work with CBS on ‘The Tony Awards’ and ‘The Kennedy Center Honors,'” said Jack Sussman, Executive Vice President, Specials, Music and Live Events, CBS Entertainment. “This multiple Emmy Award-winning team has produced some of the most unforgettable TV moments, and we can’t wait to work with them on the biggest night celebrating television.”

“We are thrilled to be working with the accomplished team at White Cherry Entertainment, and we’re looking forward to seeing their unique and innovative approach to the telecast,” said Television Academy Chairman and CEO Hayma Washington. “Glenn’s exceptional direction of past Emmy Awards, along with his and Ricky’s collective experience producing some of the most widely acclaimed television specials, ensures that the 69th Emmys will be as dynamic and entertaining as the vibrant television landscape.”

Ryan Gajewski <![CDATA[Jamie Foxx Can’t Stop Mocking ‘Beat Shazam’ Team Over Usher Song in Premiere (Exclusive Video)]]> 2017-05-25T21:27:37Z 2017-05-25T21:26:01Z Jamie Foxx won’t let it go when two contestants miss an Usher song on the series premiere of Fox’s “Beat Shazam,” as seen in the exclusive sneak peek above.

In the unscripted show’s Thursday premiere, host Foxx assumes that Jazz and Chicky, who show off their step-dancing skills on the episode, will correctly be able to name the 2010 Usher hit “OMG.”

“Jazz and Chicky, this should be in your wheelhouse now,” Foxx tells them. “I know you know Usher, now. You better not have got this answer wrong.”

The Oscar winner then goes to the answer board and discovers that the two other teams correctly named the tune, with Jazz and Chicky being the only pair to miss it.

Foxx then teases the ladies by mimicking their dance moves. “All this, all that, and y’all ass done said ‘Love in the Club,'” the “In Living Color” alum quips. “They know their choreography, but let’s get these damn songs.”

The game show focuses on teams of two competing against each other and the clock to correctly identify popular songs. It counts Foxx, Mark Burnett (“The Voice”) and Jeff Apploff (“Don’t Forget the Lyrics!”) as executive producers.

“Beat Shazam” premieres on Thursday at 8 p.m. ET on Fox. 

Sean Burch <![CDATA[Hey Look: Mark Zuckerberg Finally Got His Harvard Degree]]> 2017-05-25T21:24:03Z 2017-05-25T21:23:41Z Donning full cap and gown, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was awarded an honorary doctorate on Thursday at Harvard University, nearly 12 years after dropping out to focus on building the world’s largest social media company full-time.

Zuckerberg would later switch into a blue suit and tie and give the commencement speech, joking “you’ve now accomplished something I never could!” to the crowd.

With his mom and dad in attendance, Zuckerberg received the degree along with nine other honorary members. “Mom, I always told you I’d come back and get my degree,” said a post from Zuckerberg on his personal Facebook page.

He was a Psychology and Computer Science major during his time at Harvard, but dropped out in November 2005. His wife Priscilla Chan graduated from the university in 2007.

Umberto Gonzalez <![CDATA[Disney CEO on ‘Pirates’ Ransom Scheme: ‘We Were Not Hacked’]]> 2017-05-25T21:56:15Z 2017-05-25T21:18:24Z Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger on Thursday refuted reports that studio was hacked.

“To our knowledge we were not hacked,” Iger told Yahoo Finance. “We had a threat of a hack of a movie being stolen. We decided to take it seriously but not react in the manner in which the person who was threatening us had required.”

Iger added, “We don’t believe that it was real and nothing has happened.”

According to the The Hollywood Reporter, Disney CEO Bob Iger said in a meeting with ABC employees on May 15th in New York that hackers claimed to have a stolen movie, but did not disclose the film or the amount demanded.

Deadline reported that the hackers have stolen the upcoming Johnny Depp vehicle “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales,” set for release on May 26.

Iger did not disclose to employees the movie or the amount of ransom (purportedly demanded by hackers to be paid in Bitcoin), but said Disney currently working with the FBI on the matter.

Disney did not return TheWrap’s request for comment. The FBI said that it could neither confirm nor deny the report.

A spokesman for producer Jerry Bruckheimer declined to comment and directed TheWrap to Disney.

Beatrice Verhoeven <![CDATA[Olympic Medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings Aims For Tokyo 2020 At 38: ‘I Don’t Believe in Barriers’ (Exclusive Video)]]> 2017-05-25T21:41:47Z 2017-05-25T21:04:46Z Olympian Kerri Walsh Jennings is aiming to win a gold medal in beach volleyball at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 when she’ll be 41 because, she said on Thursday, “I don’t believe in barriers.”

Speaking at TheWrap’s Power Women breakfast in San Francisco, the three-time gold medalist said:

“You have to earn your way there. I don’t believe in barriers. I believe my heart will tell me [when to stop]. I pray that my body doesn’t give out — my body feels amazing. I’ve had five shoulder surgeries, I’ve been through a lot, my training is smarter and my diet is smarter in my recovery processes, and I have amazing trainers. I honestly pray for clarity that it’s clear when I’m done, my heart will tell me that, ‘Kerri, you’re done.'”

“I’ve lived this part of my life and I’m ready to transition into something else and grow into something else,” she continued. “My mission in the next four years is just grow in my sport — it’s such a beautiful, empowering sport for women, and the drive in this country, the opportunities this country survive on are huge and I want to take it to the next level … I want to beat the world.”

Walsh Jennings, who won the bronze medal in Rio last year, spoke alongside actress Yara Shahidi and digital entrepreneurs Lisa Sugar, Kendra Bracken-Ferguson and Kathleen Grace to a room full of top tech and media executives in San Francisco at the Dolby Laboratories headquarters auditorium.

But previously she said the gold medal wins had taken a toll on her marriage, particularly in 2008, when she won for the second time.

Going into the Olympics, “it was all about winning, because we wanted to prove ourselves,” she said. “So I had my head down every day focused on the end result, which is not the way to live life,” Walsh Jennings said. “I almost lost my marriage, I was giving birth to my boy (son Joseph was born in May 2009) and my husband said, ‘I think we’re done,’ all because I got disconnected from the most important bucket of my life, which is my relationship with my family.”

Walsh Jennings credited her extended family, her faith and her husband and children with being the reason why she’s able to focus on winning again.

“We have such a beautiful lifestyle living the beach volleyball professional athlete life and everything I could have in heaven, I have here on earth, so my dream is to live every single day and literally win gold medals every single day,” she said. “And I would do that by just staying close to my people and hugging them and loving them … Just don’t take for granted that, which is so important. Having those medals is beautiful, but it doesn’t fill you up.”

Walsh Jennings won the gold medal in 2004, 2008 and again at the 2012 London Olympics (while pregnant). But she took the bronze medal in 2016 at the Olympics in Rio de Janiero playing with a new partner, April Ross. Earlier this week, Walsh Jennings announced her new partner will be Nicole Branagh after having competed with Misty May-Treanor in past games.

She concluded, “I believe in the happiest of endings with regard to my professional career. I don’t want a win or loss to define me, and I’ve lost plenty along the way where I know that’s a learning experience. That bronze in Rio de Janeiro broke my heart but it’s going to make me better, so I have a purpose moving forward. I’m certainly driven to change that color of that medal and to end up on top.”

The Power Women Breakfast series brings together influential women of entertainment, media, technology and brands in key cities to network and connect. TheWrap has built a broad community of professional women who are decision makers and mothers, leaders and wives, innovators and activists. The franchise is now in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.

Tony Maglio <![CDATA[Here’s How Much Fox News Is Hurting Without Bill O’Reilly]]> 2017-05-25T21:41:27Z 2017-05-25T20:46:59Z Fox News has had a rough couple of weeks since its split with Bill O’Reilly — and it’s starting to show.

O’Reilly was fired on April 19 after news that he and the top cable network had paid $13 million to settle lawsuits accusing him of sexual harassment or other wrongdoing. (He denies it all.) Then, company co-president Bill Shine was ousted as part of the same purge. A few weeks later, Fox News founder Roger Ailes — who had stepped down under his own cloud of sexual harassment accusations — died.

Now, despite Sean Hannity’s best — and often successful — efforts to draw viewers, the cable news giant is feeling the effects of a tough spring without O’Reilly.

The Nielsen numbers don’t lie. Here’s how much the network has fallen this month, so far, compared to last month:

5 p.m.
Key 24-54 Demo: -19%, Total Viewers: -24%
6 p.m.
Demo: -8%, Viewers: -6%
7 p.m.
Demo: -4%, Viewers: -4%
8 p.m.
Demo: -5%, Viewers: -13%
9 p.m.
Demo: -11%, Viewers: -13%
10 p.m.
Demo: -6%, Viewers: -3%

Meanwhile, the key competition, CNN and MSNBC, are way up this month, so far, over last month.

If you’re thinking, “but May isn’t over,” you’re right — but Fox News would need to surge dramatically in the next few days to make up for its overall average decrease. And the Memorial Day long weekend usually doesn’t encourage TV viewing. Despite the month-to-month decline, Fox News should finish May as the No. 1 network in cable news for both primetime and total-day.

Let’s make sense of the above hour-by-hour breakdown, which starts before primetime but extends through it. Five o’clock was previously the home of “The Five,” but it moved to 9 p.m. after O’Reilly got the ol’ heave-ho.

O’Reilly was officially fired on April 19. His last actual on-air appearance was eight days earlier. In-between, he vacationed abroad as speculation about his future ran wild.

Tucker Carlson is doing his best to plug the hole O’Reilly left at 8, but he’s lost 13 percent of Bill’s overall audience members — just like “The Five” has done in Carlson’s former time slot. The six, seven and 10 o’clock hours have all been steadier, but are clearly not immune to what is happening around them.

More evidence that the “O’Reilly Factor” exit was the key factor in Fox News’ decline? Fox News was rising in the month before his ouster.

All three cable news networks grew from March to April in both total day and primetime for the key demo and among total viewers. Fox News wasn’t gaining as aggressively as CNN and MSNBC, but it was growing.

Year-over-year, the picture looks a little better for Fox News. It’s impossible to make an apples-to-apples comparison, since last year included a presidential election, and this year includes the constant drama of a Donald Trump presidency. But MSNBC, CNN and Fox News are all up this March, April and May compared to the same months last year — with Fox News gaining a little less than the others.

Of course, that’s partly because Fox has less room for improvement. It’s dominated cable news for most of this century, and has led for 20 straight weeks across the total-day viewership metric.

Fox News is still a ratings behemoth, thanks in part to Hannity at 10. Of course, O’Reilly went down soon after advertisers began abandoning his show, just as some are now doing with Hannity.

Tony Maglio <![CDATA[Lionsgate Q4 Earnings: ‘La La Land’ Leads Way for Revenue]]> 2017-05-25T21:17:18Z 2017-05-25T20:44:09Z Lionsgate topped Wall Street’s earnings per share (EPS) and revenue forecasts on Thursday, when the media company revealed its results for the fourth quarter of 2017.

The company reported 30 cents of EPS on revenue of $1.26 billion, fairly comfortably topping media analysts’ marks of 22 cents and $1.19 billion, respectively.

On the annual basis, Lionsgate posted $3.2 billion in revenue, resulting in 9 cents of earnings per share. The full year’s financials reflect Lionsgate’s 2016 purchase of Starz, which came with an $89 million restructuring charge.

Back to the recent 90-day period, Lionsgate’s Media Networks arm increased its profits 10.7 percent to $124.8 million, thanks in part to the licensing of “Black Sails.” TV production’s net income went in the opposite direction, unfortunately — but on the big screen, “La La Land” aided in both profit and prestige.

“We’re pleased to report our first full quarter of financial results since we brought Starz into the Lionsgate family, and the numbers reflect a great finish to a strong year,” Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer said in a media release. “Our film slate ended fiscal 2017 with an impressive box office run, our Television Group turned in another standout performance and Starz had a great year. We couldn’t be more pleased with how successfully we’re integrating them into our operations and, working together, unlocking fresh opportunities.”

LGF stock spiked immediately after announcing its earnings. Nearly just as quickly, shares of the company came right back down to earth.

Wrap Staff <![CDATA[Dear Hollywood, Here’s How to Protect Your Content From Hackers and Digital Pirates (Guest Blog)]]> 2017-05-25T20:38:37Z 2017-05-25T20:38:37Z Cyber security breaches pose a significant and growing threat to individuals and businesses around the world. The entertainment industry is no exception. The average major motion picture costs $100 million to produce, and yet only four in every 10 recoup that initial investment. This makes the protection of intellectual property and the prevention of theft critical to the success of film and television.

But as several recent high-profile security hacks in Hollywood make clear, the protection of any creative content is only as good as the weakest link. In many of these instances, the breaches occurred at third-party vendors performing postproduction work on film or television content.

When systems are breached and works are stolen, the implications bear real impact. There is the loss of the content itself, which can translate to tens of millions of dollars in lost sales if it is made available on pirate sites. But there is also the loss of reputation for the facility breached, as well as the potential for significant loss of business and even lawsuits. Just as content protection impacts a film or TV show’s bottom line, a vendor’s reputation for content security is crucial to its commercial success. All third-party vendors that work on film and television content — from specialized visual effects to dubbing studios — must have the necessary safeguards in place to protect the creative content entrusted to them.

To avoid revenue and reputational losses, the MPAA, along with its six member studios, have developed the MPAA Content Security Best Practices – Common Guidelines. These best practices cover a broad range of security controls, encompassing management systems, as well as both physical and digital security for a variety of post-production facility types. They can be found on the MPAA website and are available at no cost and in six languages.

Postproduction companies can leverage the self-assessment questionnaires to perform an internal evaluation of their security stance or a risk assessment.

Any sized postproduction facility can use this self-assessment to consider a variety of hypothetical, negative scenarios: Are you connected to the internet? How secure is your internal network? Do you trust your workers? How do you know your employees or freelancers won’t unintentionally leak content, or even walk off with pre-release content?

By repeatedly asking these questions and prioritizing the implementation of controls that protect against the highest risk, one step at a time, companies can successfully build strong security programs that keep up with the continually evolving threat landscape.

After assessing more than 500 facilities in more than 35 countries around the world, the MPAA has observed that by maintaining a strong content security environment, companies can both mitigate the damages of content theft and minimize the likelihood of a security breach in the first place.

With the escalated threat of hackers and theft, film and television businesses and workers must be vigilant in securing their creative content. While breaches can have far-reaching financial and reputational impact, they can also be mitigated with strong controls and diligence.

The MPAA’s free set of Best Practices is one important tool for entertainment industry vendors to achieve the security today’s digital environment demands

Carli Velocci <![CDATA[Sophia Bush to Leave ‘Chicago PD’ After 4 Seasons]]> 2017-05-25T20:38:25Z 2017-05-25T20:21:45Z “Chicago P.D.” star Sophia Bush is set to leave the NBC show after four seasons, an individual with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap.

Bush played Detective Erin Lindsay, an intelligence officer who had personal connections with other members of the squad. Sergeant Henry “Hank” Voight (Jason Beghe) — the head of the unit — took her under his wing and she was in a relationship with Detective Jay Halstead (Jesse Lee Soffer).

A possible exit was hinted at in the Season 4 finale, as Lindsay had recently come under fire for the way she treated a convicted pedophile (by sticking her gun in his mouth). She then got offered a job at the FBI’s New York counter-terrorism unit, which she could potentially use to solver her mom’s legal troubles.

The episode ended with Lindsay accepting the job and standing on a bridge overlooking the Chicago skyline as she ignored a call from Halstead.

Bush is the second key player to leave the show following the season finale this year. Matt Olmstead, the previous showrunner, left after the season wrapped. “Law & Order: SVU” showrunner Rick Eid recently exited the position to take over on “Chicago P.D.”

“P.D.” was renewed for Season 5, along with sister shows “Chicago Fire” and “Chicago Med.” Spinoff “Chicago Justice” was recently canceled after only one season.

Phil Hornshaw <![CDATA[The Best Bridge Between ‘Star Wars’ Trilogies Isn’t ‘Rogue One,’ It’s a Video Game (Commentary)]]> 2017-05-25T20:08:03Z 2017-05-25T20:08:03Z In “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” Lucasfilm brings together George Lucas’ often-maligned prequel trilogy and his original film, closing a gap somewhat between how the Republic fell and how the Rebellion was born. But it’s not the coolest story to bridge the two sets of films. That honor belongs to a video game.

“Star Wars: The Force Unleashed” isn’t considered “Star Wars” canon in any way now that Disney has taken the helm on the franchise and rebooted the decades of continuity that was built outside the films, but it still turns out some great ideas that flesh out some key characters. And it focuses on something we hadn’t yet seen committed to film: what Darth Vader was doing between trilogies. “Star Wars” fans know that the answer is, vaguely: he was hunting down the last of the Jedi.

“The Force Awakens” starts with that premise, then uses it to explore Vader’s mental state after turning to the Dark Side of the Force cost him everything. On one Jedi extermination mission, when Vader tracks down a Force user, he discovers their child, who is also extremely strong in the Force. Rather than kill the kid, Vader secretly abducts him and begins to train him to be his Sith apprentice. The plan is simple: Together, they’ll kill the Emperor.

This is one of the most interesting tidbits “The Force Unleashed” adds to Vader as we know him from the films. Sith Lords in “Star Wars” are notorious for working together as master and apprentice for a while, before the apprentice, seeking ever more power, overwhelms and kills the master. Then the new master takes on a new apprentice, and the cycle continues. Evil dudes are bad at working well with others, apparently.

That goes double for Darth Vader, who has been so twisted and corrupted by the Emperor — as detailed specifically in “Revenge of the Sith” — that on some level he must hate the guy. So while Vader is exceedingly loyal most of the time, it makes sense he’d be hatching his own plans. We see a little bit of this in “The Empire Strikes Back,” when Vader tries to entice Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) to join him, take down the Emperor, and “rule the galaxy as father and son.”

Starkiller, then, is Evil Luke, but he’s also a slave. Vader sends him out on errands in the years before “A New Hope,” specifically to hunt down and kill others of the last few remaining Jedi. About half of the game is about these missions, in which Starkiller zips around with his Imperial pilot friend Juno.

Here’s where it starts to get convoluted in the best, “Star Wars”-iest way. When Starkiller returns from killing his third fugitive Jedi, proving he’s strong enough to help take on the Emperor, Vader betrays him. It seems the Emperor knew about Starkiller all along, and forces Vader to prove his loyalty by killing the apprentice. Vader stabs Starkiller, but he doesn’t die, and winds up in a coma after an Imperial medical droid saves him.

Afterward, when Starkiller awakes, Vader tells him the whole thing was a ruse to throw off the Emperor. He doesn’t even apologize about the coma. Then he orders Starkiller to defect from the Empire and start gathering up the Emperor’s enemies to create an insurrection. That’ll hopefully be distraction enough to create an opening Vader and Starkiller can use.

Starkiller starts to like these folks he’s using for Vader’s purposes, though, and develops something of a moral compass. Just like Vader hates the Emperor, Starkiller hates Vader for torturing him his whole life, and the whole “stabbed with a lightsaber, six-month coma” thing.

Then the twist comes: As Starkiller attends a meeting between the people he’s sought out to discuss actually having a rebellion, who shows up but Darth Vader — and the Emperor. Again!

Turns out, the entire “kill the Emperor” plan by Vader wasn’t Vader’s plan at all — it was the Emperor’s. Vader has been training Starkiller as an ace in the hole, but not to take over. Instead, Emperor Palpatine needed a useful agent who could get all his enemies together in one place. That includes Bail Organa, played by Jimmy Smits in the films, Mon Mothma, Princess Leia, and a fugitive Jedi and brilliant commander called Rahm Kota. Starkiller wasn’t creating a rebellion, he was baiting a trap without knowing it.

Starkiller escapes death again, and travels to the original Death Star, still under construction, where his friends are being held. There, players confront Vader in an awesome battle, and then can either choose to kill him, or leave him and take on the Emperor. Killing Vader means Starkiller becomes the Emperor’s new cyborg apprentice (the “bad” ending). But confronting the Emperor is enough to allow the rebels to escape, with Starkiller sacrificing himself to save his friends.

The people Starkiller brings together are the founders of the Rebel Alliance as seen in the prequels — specifically, Organa and Mon Mothma. (The game adds the defector Juno, plus Kota, who has the military training to help them raise and train an army.) Inspired by his sacrifice, they formally create the Alliance to Restore the Republic.

That’s the best part: Emperor Palpatine’s convoluted plan to gather up and stamp out any resistance to his Empire actually winds up forming the Rebel Alliance. The guy whose idea was to create a Rebellion is the guy the Rebellion ultimately destroys.

It’s a perfect fit in the post-Prequel “Star Wars” franchise, utilizing Palpatine’s penchant for scheming — that’s all he does in the prequels and it’s how he tries to destroy the Rebel Alliance with his giant Death Star trap in “Return of the Jedi” — to create a fascinating plot.

And it fleshes out Darth Vader in a way that little other than “Return of the Jedi” had before that. “The Force Unleashed” bridges the gap between who Vader was before he turned to the Dark Side and who he was after. Seeing him through Starkiller’s experiences, and the horrible stuff Vader does to him, helps solidify him as a terrifying villain, even if Palpatine is ultimately the brains.

We’ll likely never see any more of Starkiller (especially since that name, well-known as Luke Skywalker’s original last name in early drafts of “Star Wars,” has been repurposed as the Starkiller Base of “The Force Awakens”). Darth Vader, meanwhile, is having his story told in comics and novels. And with spin-offs like “Rogue One” and a Han Solo movie in the works, a Vader-centric post-prequels film doesn’t seem out of the realm of possibility either.

But for a while there, the formation of the Rebellion could be chalked up to the galaxy’s worst dude’s big Machiavellian plan backfiring spectacularly. And we had a complex, but still super-evil, look at his most loyal servant. After a prequel series showing a conflicted, sometimes whiny Anakin Skywalker, coming up against peak-evil Darth Vader was one of the best “Star Wars” experiences anyone had created.

Of course, it’s fully possible the Disney era will come up with something just as good with the galaxy’s most fearsome heavy breathing bad guy. But it’s a bit of a shame the story of Starkiller has been reduced to a “Star Wars” legend, and it’s still worth checking out.

Nigel M. Smith <![CDATA[‘Makala,’ ‘Gabriel and the Mountain’ Honored With Cannes’ Critics’ Week Awards]]> 2017-05-25T19:59:42Z 2017-05-25T19:49:16Z Cannes’ Critics’ Week awarded Emmanuel Gras’ Congo-set documentary “Makala” and Brazilian director Fellipe Gamarano Barbosa’s drama “Gabriel and the Mountain” with its two top awards on Thursday.

“Makala,” Gras’ second documentary, won the Nespresso Grand Prize at Critics’ Week, while Barbosa’s film netted the Visionary prize and Fondation Gan award.

“Makala” follows a young man (Kabwita Kasongo) who lives in the Congolese countryside and works on the production of charcoal to give his family a better future. Gras last directed 2011’s “Bovines,” which was nominated for a Cesar Award in France.

Gamarano Barbosa’s second feature “Gabriel and the Mountain” is based on the true story of a young man who was found dead in the mountains, between Malawi and Mozambique, in 2009.

The jury of this year’s Critics’ Week was presided over by Brazilian filmmaker Kleber Mendonça Filho, and comprised Diana Bustamante Escobar, Hania Mroué, Niels Schneider and Eric Kohn.

Ryan Gajewski <![CDATA[‘Love Connection’ Premiere Sneak Peek: Andy Cohen Reacts to Dater’s JLo Diss (Exclusive Video)]]> 2017-05-25T19:30:12Z 2017-05-25T19:30:12Z There is apparently one man on the planet who isn’t looking for someone like Jennifer Lopez, as host Andy Cohen learns on Thursday’s series premiere of “Love Connection.”

The exclusive clip above from Fox’s revived version of the romance show features Sheena and Gregory, who discuss their recent first date. Sheena describes Gregory as “attractive,” but he does not exactly return the favor.

“It’s going well — she’s a really nice girl,” Gregory says in a self-recorded video during the actual date. “Probably not someone that I would continue to date. I typically go for maybe a little more of the preppy style, and she’s more of the J.Lo style.”

Sheena is baffled by the remark and points out that Lopez is typically considered to be quite fashionable. Cohen then asks, “Do you mean that she’s more ‘Jenny From the Block’?”

Gregory does his best to dig himself out of the hole: “Well, when you say it like that, it sounds bad. But no, I typically go for someone who’s just different.”

The hourlong game show is executive-produced by Mike Fleiss (“The Bachelor”), with Cohen as a co-executive producer. Warner Horizon Television, Telepictures Productions and Fleiss’ Next Entertainment are behind the reboot of the game show. “Love Connection” originally launched in 1983 with host Chuck Woolery and ran for 11 years.

Watch the clip above to see the numerical score that Sheena and Gregory gave each other based on looks.

“Love Connection” premieres on Thursday at 9 p.m. ET on Fox.

Ryan Gajewski <![CDATA[TJ Miller to Exit HBO’s ‘Silicon Valley’]]> 2017-05-25T20:07:58Z 2017-05-25T19:14:38Z The Bachmanity is coming to an end, as T.J. Miller is leaving HBO’s “Silicon Valley” after Season 4.

The actor has played grumpy entrepreneur Erlich Bachman on the Emmy-nominated comedy since its April 2014 launch. The series was picked up on Thursday for a fifth season.

“The producers of Silicon Valley and T.J. Miller have mutually agreed that T.J. will not return for season 5,” HBO said in a statement. “In Erlich Bachman, T.J. has brought to life an unforgettable character, and while his presence on the show will be missed, we appreciate his contribution and look forward to future collaborations.”

Miller, who won a Critics’ Choice Television Award for the role in 2015, also stars on Comedy Central’s “The Gorburger Show.” His standup special, “Meticulously Ridiculous,” airs on HBO next month.

He also continues to maintain a busy film career. He has a role in last year’s smash hit “Deadpool” and voices a character in “The Emoji Movie,” hitting theaters in July.

“Silicon Valley” also stars Thomas Middleditch (Richard), Kumail Nanjiani (Dinesh), Zach Woods (Jared), Martin Starr (Gilfoyle) and Amanda Crew (Monica). It was created by Mike Judge, John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky, and focuses on five guys who launch a startup called Pied Piper.

The show’s Season 4 finale airs Sunday, June 25.

Nigel M. Smith <![CDATA[‘Price Is Right’ Contestant Breaks Plinko Record, Goes Completely Nuts (Video)]]> 2017-05-25T19:34:10Z 2017-05-25T19:10:09Z “The Price Is Right” contestants are notoriously easy to excite but on Thursday’s show, one lucky winner went the extra mile after breaking the show’s all-time Plinko record: He completely lost his mind.

Ryan (the show only provides contestants’ first names) was already worked up when host Drew Carey invited him to the stage, sprinting down the aisles and doing high-fives with the crowd.

He screamed even louder when Carey revealed he’d be playing the Plinko game, in which contestants drop a chip down a gigantic pinball board to land on a winning sum.

Dropping his first chip, Ryan won the top amount, $10,000, prompting him to scream “Oh, my God!” a bunch of times and spin on the spot. On his next try, he scored a further $1,000, followed by $10,000, $500, and to the disbelief of even Carey, another $10,000 on his last attempt.

It’s at that point that Ryan screeched higher than he had before, eyes wide, and danced around the stage in total astonishment. The audience erupted in chants of, “Ryan, Ryan!” See it for yourself above.

Viewers at home were quick to react on Twitter, with one user tweeting, “Thought Ryan was gonna have a heart attack!”

Tim Kenneally <![CDATA[Dwayne Johnson Laughs Off Horrible ‘Baywatch’ Reviews: ‘Critics HATE It’]]> 2017-05-25T23:43:26Z 2017-05-25T19:08:42Z Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is hoping to get the last laugh on critics who are lambasting his new movie “Baywatch.”

Johnson, who plays Mitch Buchannon in the big-screen reboot of the David Hasselhoff water-safety series, took to Twitter on Thursday to make light of the far-less-than-positive critical reception that the film has received, declaring, “People just want to laugh & have fun.”

Johnson offered his assessment after being informed that the film had inched up from a 13 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes to a whopping 18 percent. (As of this writing, the film has further inched up to 21 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, though it has an audience rating of 65 percent.)

“Yay positive upticks,” Johnson wrote, accompanied by a laughing emoji. “Fans LOVE the movie. Critics HATE it. What a glaring disconnect. People just want to laugh & have fun. #Baywatch.”

So far the film, which also stars Zac Efron, has received drubbings such as: “‘Baywatch’ is surprisingly without sexism or condescension: It’s equal-opportunity stupid,” courtesy of  Slate critic Dana Stevens, and “‘Baywatch’ is no day on the beach,” from the keyboard of Minneapolis Star-Tribune writer Colin Covert.

It hasn’t all been bad news for “Baywatch” on the critical front, however; Time critic Stephanie Zacharek declared the film to be “a lot of fun,” although not before calling it “lightweight, a tiny bit crude and a trillion grains of sand away from anything approaching realism.”

Dwayne Johnson


See Dwayne Johnson's latest POWER MOVE.



On the box-office front, “Baywatch” rang up  $1.25 million from 2,554 screens in Wednesday previews.

Thom Geier <![CDATA[25 Celebrity Wines Ranked Worst to Best: Drew Barrymore’s Pinot to Brad and Angelina’s Rosé (Photos)]]> 2017-05-25T19:15:19Z 2017-05-25T19:05:57Z The latest status symbol for many stars is launching (or buying) their own winery. But how do the wines actually stack up? We looked at the latest reviews of celeb-owned vintages by Wine Enthusiast magazine.

Ciccone 2005 Madonna Chardonnay (Leelanau Peninsula, Michigan)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 82 points

“This wine is as intense as its namesake, the singer Madonna,” Wine Enthusiast wrote in 2009. “Not coincidentally, it is made by her father.”


Dave Matthews’ Dreaming Tree 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon (North Coast, California)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 82 points

“This is a dry red wine exuding bell pepper and oak that was made in large quantities in partnership with musician Dave Matthews,” the site’s critic wrote.

Dan Aykroyd Wines 2007 Discovery Series Chardonnay (Sonoma County)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 83 points

“Tart and jammy, with acidic, one-dimensional flavors of pineapples, vanilla and butterscotch,” the site writes.

Jeff Gordon 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 83 points

“This is a thin, unfussy wine that imparts bell pepper and asparagus in a sea of green flavor,” the site’s critic writes.

Mike Ditka 2011 The Icon Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 85 points

“Not overly structured, it’ll please tough guys who like their wine to be easily quaffable,” the Wine Enthusiast critic writes.

Fergie’s Ferguson Crest 2013 Viognier (Santa Ynez Valley)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 87 points

“From pop music star Fergie, this wine shows dainty aromas of lemon-lime soda, red apple and honey,” the site’s critic writes.


Château de Tigné 2014 Gerard Depardieu Pinot Noir (Vin de France)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 87 points

“With its attractive red-fruit flavors, this is a light, perfumed wine,” the site’s reviewer writes.

Mario Andretti’s Andretti 2012 Montona Super Tuscan Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon-Sangiovese (Napa Valley)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 87 points

The celebrated race-car driver has been a longtime winemaker. “Dusty, chalky tannin and earth provide character to this blend,” Wine Enthusiast wrote.

Sting’s Il Palagio 2012 Sister Moon Red (Toscana, Italy)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 88 points

“The polished palate shows mature red plum, tobacco and vanilla,” Wine Enthusiast wrote in 2017 of the latest Tuscan blend from the veteran British rock star.

Lorraine Bracco’s Bracco 2013 La Mont-Brach White (Collio)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 89 points

“The tense, tangy palate offers white peach, citrus zest, fennel and mineral,” the site writes.


Drew Barrymore’s Barrymore 2015 Pinot Grigio (California)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 89 points

“Apple peels, squeezed lime, rain on cement, jicama and Asian-pear aromas show on the crisp yet rounded nose of this bottling by actress Drew Barrymore,” the site writes.


Francis Coppola 2014 Black Label Claret Diamond Collection Cabernet Sauvignon (California)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 90 points

“This is a big, beefy wine that smells smoky and black-cherry-like and tastes full, bold and firmly tannic,” the site writes.


TwentyFour by Charles Woodson 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon (Calistoga)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 90 points

“As intense and strapping as a Hall of Fame cornerback, this Cabernet is ripe in dark cherry, vanilla and milk chocolate, the tannins mouthfillingly sweet,” Wine Enthusiast wrote in 2014.


John Lasseter’s Lasseter 2013 Chemin de Fer Red (Sonoma Valley)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 91 points

The magazine’s critic writes of “The Toy Story” director’s wine: “Smoky, charred oak and spicy acidity wrap around lush blackberry, cherry and tar, with plenty of grip to show on the finish.”

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s Château Miraval 2015 Rosé (Côtes de Provence)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 91 points

The former Hollywood It couple bought the French estate in 2011 in partnership with the Perrin family of Château Beaucastel in Châteauneuf-du-Pape — and the estate denied reports of a sale in 2017 despite their divorce.  Wine Enthusiast writes, “Happily, it is also a very fine wine, perfectly balanced between crisp fruit and acidity.”

Nigel Lythgoe’s Villa San Juliette 2014 Reserve Grenache (Paso Robles)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 91 points

Wine Enthusiast critic waxes on about the “So You Think You Can Dance” judge’s new vintage: “It’s floral, full-bodied and multi-layered on the palate.”

Jim Nantz’s The Calling 2014 Fox Den Vineyard Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley, California)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 91 points

The veteran CBS sportscaster has been making wine with partner Peter Deutch for years, and Wine Enthusiast called this bottle “ripe and full bodied.”

Drew Bledsoe’s Doubleback 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon (Walla Walla Valley, Washington)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 92 points

Former NFL quarterback Drew Bledsoe planted his first vineyard in his native Washington in 2007 and he won high praise for his 2013 cab: “Alluring aromas of cassis, earth, spice, vanilla and flowers are followed by a structured palate.”

Emilio Estevez’s Casa Dumetz 2014 Thompson Grenache (Santa Barbara County)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 92 points

“This bottling shows very fresh cherry juice and dried roses as well as inviting splashes of Dr. Pepper, kola nut and sarsaparilla on the nose,” the site writes.

Wayne Gretzky Estates 2012 No. 99 Icewine Cabernet Franc (Niagara Peninsula)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 92 points

“Medium cherry in color with notes of raspberry jam, wet stone, mint and cherry,” the site writes.

Sam Neill’s Two Paddocks 2015 The Fusilier Proprietor’s Reserve Pinot Noir (Central Otago, New Zealand)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 92 points

“The 2015s from proprietor Sam Neill (yes, the actor) are a big step up from the 2014s,” the site’s reviewer writes.

Kyle MacLachlan’s Pursued by Bear 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon (Columbia Valley, Washington)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 93 points

“It provides plenty of immediate appeal but will only benefit from some time in the cellar,” Wine Enthusiast critic writes of the “Twin Peaks” star’s latest.

Boz Scaggs’ Scaggs Vineyard 2008 Montage G-S-M (Mount Veeder, Napa Valley)

Wine Enthusiast Rating: 95 points

Here’s a surprise from the R&B singer-songwriter: A rave from Wine Enthusiast in 2011 for his “extraordinarily decadent Mourvèdre, Grenache and Syrah blend, currently among the best in California.”

Ashley Boucher <![CDATA[‘Dirty Dancing’ Did Not Give Viewers Time of Their Lives: ‘Worst Remake Ever’]]> 2017-05-25T19:04:12Z 2017-05-25T19:04:12Z If it’s not broken, why try to fix it?

A lot of fans have a major bone to pick with ABC’s new TV musical version of the beloved 1987 classic movie “Dirty Dancing,” which originally starred Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey. Wednesday night’s remake, featuring Colt Prattes and Abigail Breslin, had people airing complaints on Twitter, and the results are nothing short of hilarious.

Some viewers thought up ways other remakes could ruin an original. “Titanic remake: Jack lives!!!” one user tweeted. Others were nearly speechless, simply saying that ABC’s version was the “worst remake ever.”

Here are some of the funniest reactions to the remake:

Rosemary Rossi <![CDATA[50 Celebs Who Were Reported Dead… But Weren’t (Photos)]]> 2017-05-25T21:29:13Z 2017-05-25T18:58:43Z Will Ferrell
A fake press release posted on the iNewswire Web site in March 2006 claiming that Ferrell was killed in a paragliding accident in Southern California when a wind gust caused him to lose crash into trees.

Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake
As a joke, two Dallas jockeys claimed a car accident took the lives of pop stars perished, who were dating at the time. “The first thing I did was call Britney,” Timberlake told ABC News in 2001. “Since the beginning, [when] people knew about our relationship, there’s always been things that have been said that were totally not true, but this just, like, took it to a whole ‘nother planet.”

Avril Lavigne
Rumors began circulating in April 2003 that the “Complicated’ singer killed herself after her grandfather’s death. In recent weeks, Twitter gave new fuel to that fire, igniting a conspiracy theory that the Lavigne known today was actually look-alike singer Melissa Vandella. As the theory goes, the suits at Lavigne’s label cooked up the cover up scheme so they could continue to release her songs.

Paul McCartney
Conspiracy loving Beatles fans believe that McCartney died in 1966 and everything that’s happened to “him” since then is courtesy of a look-alike and sound-alike. Not only that, they believe clues to McCartney’s fate were revealed in songs written by fellow musicians George Harrison and John Lennon. Like, Lennon’s “A Day in the Life,” where the lyrics “Paul is dead, miss him, miss him”… which can only be heard when the song is played backward.

Kanye West
Social media, again, ran amuck Dec. 2016 with the theory that West’s uncharacteristic behavior at the time was because it wasn’t really him… it was a clone. You read that right. Cancelling his tour, dying his hear, having a public meltdown and dissing Beyonce and Jay Z while cozying up to Donald Trump was enough proof for some.

Eddie Murphy
The actor/comedian has been the subject of false reports of his death more than once. On Aug. 30, 2012, has was said to have been killed in a snowboard accident and, most recently, was again the subject of internet buzz after the death of his brother Charlie confused.

Vin Diesel
Facebook was the starting point for a post about the death of the “Fate of the Furious” actor went viral. The post linked to what they said was a video report that requested permission to access the viewer’s accounts. If granted, the “RIP Vin Diesel” post was sent as spam to everyone on that user’s friends list.

Adam Sandler
LinkBeef, which was the breeding ground for several celebrity death hoaxes, reported on Jan. 13, 2017, that Sandler was found dead of an apparent suicide and even cited their source as Marin County Police Department in California and “quoted” Sandler’s “utterly heartbroken” wife, Jackie.

Denzel Washington
Remember that fake news about Eddie Murphy dying in a snowboarding accident? Facebook tried the same story with Washington in Nov. 2011.

Nicolas Cage
Although’s July 2016 headline that “Nicolas Cage passed away because of a serious Motorcycle Accident” and the body of the story said he died when he “lost control of his snowboard and struck a tree,” social media took the bait and ran with it. Another fake news outlet picked up the story, tweaked it and added a Photoshopped pic of a motorcycle crash scene, Cage’s face and a CNN chyron.

Hillary Clinton
Following Hillary Clinton’s appearance at a 9/11 memorial in Sept. 2016 in which she appeared to collapse while getting into a van, ABC News weekend anchor Joe Torres said on that evening’s newscast, “We begin with the breaking news about Hillary Clinton’s death.” The anchor meant to say “health” rather than “death,” but Twitter nonetheless had a field day, sparking speculation that the woman who emerged from her daughter Chelesa’s home a few hours later was a look-alike because the former first lady had died.

Sean Kingston
BBC News shocked the music world when they reported the Jamaican-American singer was found dead at his home weeks after he crashed his jet ski accident in a bridge in Miami. “Today” caught up with the 21-year-old three months later about his near-death experience.

Jackie Chan
“Jackie is alive and well,” read a note on the action star’s Facebook page following internet buzz that he died. “He did not suffer a heart attack and die, as was reported on many social networking sites and in online news reports.”

Cher was added to the celebrity death hoax list of victims after a “R.I.P. Cher” Facebook page was created in Sept. 2016. Although the post concluded with the message “Please show your sympathy and condolences by commenting on and liking this page,” wasn’t a clue that it was a fake, the reports of her passing went viral and attracted nearly a million likes.

Macaulay Culkin
When the “Home Alone” star was targeted by death rumors in Nov. 2014, he debunked the reports by taking to Instagram and posting a photo parodying a scene from “Weekend at Bernie’s.”

Betty White
People are so in love with Betty White that when her name trends on Twitter, they freak out with worry that she’s met her maker. As recently as May 10, a tweet popped up saying that she was found dead and another one said her publicist confirmed it. Shortly thereafter, someone set up a GoFunMe to protect her from harm.

A fake news story reporting Eminem‘s death in a car accident went viral in 2009. The story went as far as to blame the rapper for the crash, saying he swerved into an oncoming truck because he was on his cell phone.

Jim Carrey
And here we go again with that same snowboarding accident report that keeps popping up with the same facts and only the name of the “deceased” changed. Yup, Carrey was said to have died in April 2016. Even weirder, posted his “anticipated” obituary with a May 20, 2017 date.

Celine Dion
Never-ending rumors of Dion’s death on social media do not sit well the singer, in great part because each time one sprouts wings and flies, she has to ease her aging mother’s fears. “The thing that worries me is my mum,” according to Digital Spy. “It makes me a little mad – she’s 86 years old and if I’m not on the phone telling her I’m OK four seconds after it’s on the news… it doesn’t matter what they say, it’s the impact it has on your family.”

Jewelry can kill you, or at least that’s the rumor that started after the singer accidentally ripped out an earring during a Brooklyn concert and blood began running down her face. A Facebook page claimed she had died because she didn’t seek medical attention. The BeyHive was not happy about the hoax.

Jack Black
The Twitter account for Black’s band Tenacious D was hacked in June 2016 and the culprits posted this unsettling message: “It is with a heavy heart I am to announce that Jack Black passed away last night at 3:37 am. The cause of death is yet unknown.” They later cleared up the mess, posting, “WE had our Twitter account hacked. We can assure you that Jack is ALIVE and WELL and that this was a sick ‘prank.'”

Chevy Chase
According to Breaking 13 News, the “Community” actor died in his sleep after suffering a heart attack on Jan. 6, 2016.

Alice Cooper
Fans of the musician got a little confused in the early ’70s after reading Melody Maker magazine’s satirical review of Cooper’s concert in the form of a mock obit. He later issued a statement saying, “I’m alive, and drunk as usual.”

Russell Crowe
The “Gladiator” took matters into his own hands in June 2010 by tweeting, “Unable to answer tweets fell off a mountain in Austria, all over red rover. Don’t know how I got there, but the media are never wrong. G’Bye.”

Miley Cyrus
The “Wrecking Ball” singer has dodged the social medium Grim Reaper more than once. In 2008, she was said to have been killed by a hit and run driver, and in 2009 socialite Peaches Geldolf tweeted that a “friend in the industry” texted her that Cyrus had died. Cyrus’ appearances at the time during a London concert put those issues to rest.

Dwayne Johnson
A Facebook post went viral in April 2014 saying that The Rock died while filming a stunt for “Fast & Furious 7.” He posted a message to his fans on Facebook saying, “Rumors of my death are false – Im still ‘Bringin’ It’ 24hrs a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year – including leap year!” A tweet of his took a more direct approach: “I would love to meet the person who is starting rumors of my death – to show them how a dead foot feels up their ass.”

Michael Jordan
The web site Cronica MX posted an article in Feb. 2015 reporting the NBA superstar died on a heart attack. They took it a step further by producing a video with spliced footage of a breaking news segment and a tearful anchor.

Martin Lawrence
Martin Lawrence was reportedly found dead in a Los Angeles hotel room by a maid named Verna Del Sosa in 2015. Lawrence never mentioned it directly, but he did make his un-dead self known visible on social media in the days following his “death.”

A BBC News video uploaded on YouTube on Sept. 24, 2010 announced Madonna was dead. They were, obviously, wrong.

Willie Nelson
The rumors of Willie Nelson‘s imminent demise have been exaggerated, his publicist says, disputing reports the country music icon is on death’s door. “He’s perfectly fine,” Elaine Schock told the Associated Press on Wednesday, attempting to finally shut down rumors sparked by a March 13 Radar Online story that described the 83-year-old as “deathly ill” and said his lungs weren’t strong enough to perform. A “bad cold” forced Nelson to cancel several shows in January and February, but he was back onstage by Feb. 16, when he played at a San Antonio rodeo. And last week he performed at a Houston stadiumfor 75,000 fans, where he appeared to be in good health and had no problems singing.

Barack Obama
on July 4, 2011, a hacker collective called “The Script Kiddies” took control of Fox News’s politics Twitter feed and posted that the incumbent President had been assassinated during a campaigning event in Iowa.

Sean Penn
News reports popped up on Jan. 12, 2016 that Sean Penn was found murdered in his Malibu home and that authorities were investigating that El Chapo might have ordered a hit on the actor/director who interviewed him shortly before.

Axl Rose
On December 3, 2014, a fake news report circulated on the internet claiming that the singer had been found dead at home. In response, Rose tweeted “If I’m dead do I still have to pay taxes?”

Arnold Schwarzenegger
An Aug. 28, 2015 post on (not to be mistaken for reported that the former Governator died following a heart attack. But this was one time he did not say “Hasta la vista, baby.”

Justin Bieber
If you believe social media, Bieber has been “dead” more times than you can count. There were suicide rumors in 2009, which resurfaced in 2010), along with a shooting in a nightclub and an overdose. Then there was #RIPJustinBieber, which trended on Twitter in Jan. 2011.

Robert Redford
The Sundance Film Festival founder’s publicist stepped in to call reports of his death “a sick hoax.” The fake news initialed from Britain’s Sky News, which said he had fallen off a “golf buggy” in Santa Monica.

Gabourey Sidibe
The “Empire” star was barraged with tweets from concerned fans in March 2016, who were just checking to make sure she was still alive, following post saying she had died from an asthma attack. Sidibe assured everyone she was fine, but joking that maybe she was dead, if her “version of Hell is people believing poorly written articles about me.”

Lindsay Lohan
A tweak to Lohan’s Wikipedia page in July 2011 cited her death and credited E! News as their source – which was false. But the news spread, thanks to a fake Kim Kardashian Twitter account.

Hilary Duff
The former Disney star was said to have fallen to her death on the Kauri Cliffs in New Zealand.

Will Smith
May 2011 was not a pleasant month for Smith, who was reported killed in a car accident, after an overdose and falling off that same cliff where Hilary Duff supposedly perished.

Carlos Santana
A Sept. 2015 tweet from a Canadian journalist reporting that Santana’s body was found in a car sparked immediate denials from his peeps. “He is alive and well and enjoying his morning!” his rep told USA Today. Team Santana add to that message, posting on their Facebook page, “… Thank you all for your concern, but the reports of his passing are false.”

Bill Cosby
After the internet announced the comedian’s death, he tweeted, “To the people behind the foolishness, I’m not sure you see how upsetting this is.”

Paris Hilton
While Paris Hilton was serving jail time in 2007 for a DUI, the internet spread word that she had been stabbed to death by a fellow inmate. The story was originally posted on-line and made to look as if it was coming from CNN.

Taylor Swift
Apparently, 2009 was not a good year for Swift. She was said to have been in a fatal car accident and then, months later, died from an allergic reaction to sleeping pills, which spread like wildfire on Facebook and YouTube.

Nick Jonas
The pop singer-turned-actor was also the victim of death hoaxes twice in 2009. One report said he died of cardiac arrest due to complications with his diabetes, while another said his heart stopped after a lap dance in a Dallas strip joint.

Morgan Freeman
Although CNN had initially been accused of claiming that Freeman had died, it was actually a Twitter user named @originalcjizzle, who later wrote, “I had no intention of things turning out this way.”

Zach Braff
The “Scrubs” actor was reported dead in 2009 by a fake CNN.Com page. The perpetrator of the “joke” later posted an apology, saying in part, “… Thanks for (apparently) taking it lightly, since I haven’t gotten a letter about a lawsuit yet. Just so you know, I’m a huge fan; that’s the only reason I made this page, believe it or not. Also, sorry for upsetting your mother.”

Bob Hope
Film legend Bob Hope’s death was announced five years prematurely in 1998 when a pre-written obituary was accidentally published on the Associated Press website. Unfortunately, the erroneous report of his “death” was then announced by the United States House of Representatives live on C-Span.

Mark Twain
We couldn’t leave out humorist Mark Twain, who became known for, among many other things, one of history’s most misquoted quotes. In 1897, Twain he responded to a journalist’s inquity about his health by writing, “James Ross Clemens, a cousin of mine, was seriously ill two or three weeks ago in London, but is well now. The report of my illness grew out of his illness; the report of my death was an exaggeration.”

Umberto Gonzalez <![CDATA[‘Wonder Woman’ Director Patty Jenkins: ‘I Wasn’t the Right Director’ for ‘Thor 2’]]> 2017-05-25T18:48:44Z 2017-05-25T18:48:44Z “Wonder Woman” director Patty Jenkins, who at one time was attached to direct Marvel Studios “Thor: The Dark World” before being replaced by “Game of Thrones” director Alan Taylor, revealed the reason why in a new interview.

“I don’t think I could have made a good movie out of ‘Thor 2’ because I wasn’t the right director. And I don’t think I would have been in the running for ‘Wonder Woman’ as a result,” Jenkins told Uproxx.

Jenkins further explained: “And that’s one of the reasons why I’m glad I didn’t do it. Because I could have made a great ‘Thor’ if I could have done the story that I was wanting to do. But I don’t think I was the right person to make a great ‘Thor’ out of the story they wanted to do.”

That’s not to say she wasn’t hurt when it didn’t work out, “I was heartbroken. I was like, oh, what a bummer. But in retrospect it all makes sense,” Jenkins said.

“Wonder Woman” was recently voted the summer’s most anticipated movie by fans in a Fandango survey released Tuesday, ahead of “Spider-Man: Homecoming” and “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales.”

The movie starring Gal Gadot premieres Thursday night in Hollywood and will be released in theaters on June 2.
Sean Burch <![CDATA[Imzy, the ‘Friendly Reddit,’ Is Shutting Down]]> 2017-05-25T18:41:11Z 2017-05-25T18:37:58Z Did the trolls just win?

Imzy — the internet community that positioned itself as a more compassionate version of Reddit — will be shutting down in June, according to a post from company CEO Dan McComas.

“We’ve loved getting to know all of you and seeing you build communities and make new friends,” said McComas. “Unfortunately, we were not able to find our place in the market. We still feel that the internet deserves better and hope that we see more teams take on this challenge in the future.”

The company launched last fall with $8 million in funding and company leadership that included former Reddit and Twitter employees.

Imzy aimed to create more accountability for online commenting by making users join a group before being able to join a conversation. “Extreme” content — posts involving torture, self-harm, and porn — were not allowed on the site.

In contrast to Reddit, Imzy allowed users to “tip” moderators and other community members, in an effort to keep the site free of ads.

The site will close down on June 23. McComas assured users they will not have to worry about Imzy selling their information.

Phil Owen <![CDATA[Top 13 Best ‘Star Wars’ Video Games Ever (Photos)]]> 2017-05-25T18:32:12Z 2017-05-25T18:30:12Z There have been so many “Star Wars” games, and most of them were not good. Hell, some of the ones I list here aren’t good. But they all deliver an experience you can’t get anywhere else, and that’s worthy of some praise.

“Masters of Teras Kasi”

How we haven’t been inundated with “Star Wars” fighting games is anyone’s guess — aside from “Soul Calibur IV” letting you play as Yoda or Darth Vader, “Masters of Teras Kasi” on the original PlayStation console is the only one. And it was the style of fighter that was easy to learn and enjoy, so we remember it fondly.

“Rebel Assault 2”

Not actually good, but still great. It’s a game that defies description because there’s nothing from the past two decades to compare it to. For that reason alone it makes the list.

“Yoda Stories”

This weird and cheap little “Zelda”-esque thing had Yoda sending Luke Skywalker on bite-sized randomly generated missions, and somehow it was extremely engaging.

“Rogue Squadron”

We’d been flying in space battles for years with “X-Wing” and “TIE Fighter,” but “Rogue Squadron” gave us something new bringing our starfighter into a planet’s atmosphere. “Rogue Squadron” was also built to be accessible, which was a pretty new thing for a “Star Wars” game.

“Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast”

If we’re being honest, the beloved “Jedi Knight” video game series is pretty mediocre all the way around. “Jedi Outcast,” though, is the peak as it features the closest we’ve ever gotten to realistic video game lightsaber combat.

“The Force Unleashed”

The “Star Wars” universe is full of stories about good apprentices going bad and wreaking havoc on the good guys, but we’ve very rarely gotten the inverse. That made “The Force Unleashed” a really novel experience. You play as Darth Vader’s secret apprentice in the years between the original and prequel trilogies. You’re a dark side force user and soldier for the Empire who goes rogue in a really epic way.

“The Old Republic”

Bioware attempted to meld their style of story-focused role-playing game with a “World of Warcraft”-style online game, and that was a mistake. But it’s still full of really outstanding “Star Wars” stories that are better than most all of the ones you’d get elsewhere. It’s also funnier than most others.

“Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords”

Obsidian Entertainment created an experience that manages to subvert basically every way “Star Wars” has ever operated, starting with its predecessor. It’s a total downer, every character is in a bad mood, and none of the decisions your character makes will ever be greeted with approval from her master. “There are no right choices” is not the normal “Star Wars” way, and it works perfectly.

Reid Nakamura <![CDATA[Trump Shoves NATO Leader Aside, Twitter Reacts: ‘Classy Leader Alert!’]]> 2017-05-25T19:20:29Z 2017-05-25T18:26:35Z The latest moment from President Donald Trump’s trip abroad to go viral is a brief video which appears to show Trump moving aside another NATO leader so he can be front and center in a photo.

The moment, which has been widely shared on social media, shows Trump putting his hand on Dusko Markovic, the prime minister of Montenegro, and stepping around the him before adjusting his jacket.

A number of social media users have criticized the president for the move, including filmmaker Ava DuVernay, who shared the video on Twitter with the caption, “A class act. A statesman. A real gentleman.”

“Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling mocked Trump, tweeting: “You tiny, tiny, tiny little man.”

The shove came during a NATO summit at alliance’s headquarters in Brussels on Thursday. The meeting is Trump’s first summit as President, alongside 27 other world leaders, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron.

The Washington Post’s White House bureau chief, Philip Rucker offered an explanation for the moment, writing on Twitter that the positioning for the photo was predetermined.

“Trump’s spot at center of photo was predetermined, based on NATO protocol. Alphabetical order. US always front/center, next to UK,” he wrote.

Trump also made headlines at the summit when he chose not to reiterate the U.S.’s commitment to Article 5 — the mutual defense provision that has only been invoked once, after 9/11 — and criticized other NATO members for failing to meet the defense spending benchmark.

“Members of the alliance must finally contribute their fair share and meet their financial obligations,” Trump said, according to CNN. Under the terms of the NATO treaty, members must commit 2 percent of GDP to defense spending, a mark the majority of member nations do not meet.

“Twenty-three of the 28 member nations are still not paying what they should be paying and what they are supposed to be paying for their defense. This is not fair to the people and taxpayers of the United States,” Trump said.

See more reactions to the shove below:

Linda Ge <![CDATA[Gillian Anderson Channels David Bowie in ‘American Gods’ Clip (Video)]]> 2017-05-25T21:57:42Z 2017-05-25T18:23:17Z Gillian Anderson will channel David Bowie in a new episode of “American Gods,” and the first clip shows her doing a hell of an impersonation of the late singer.

In the clip (above), Anderson’s character Media — who has already appeared as Lucille Ball’s Lucy and will also show up as Marilyn Monroe, among other iconic characters — confronts Technical Boy (Bruce Langley).

Gillian Anderson stars as the New God Media in the critically acclaimed series “American Gods.” Media assumes whatever form will deliver her message most effectively and is often personified by iconic celebrities.

The two are working together against Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane), but clearly there’s some friction there too. Media demands Technical Boy apologize for lynching Shadow (Ricky Whittle), as we saw in the series premiere episode, and threatens that Mr. World (Crispin Glover), who we’ve yet to meet, is the one demanding it.

“American Gods” was recently renewed for Season 2.

Season 1 of “American Gods” premiered on Sunday, April 30. The first season consists of eight episodes, but does not cover the entirety of Neil Gaiman’s novel, on which the series is based.

Bryan Fuller and Michael Green serve as showrunners on the Neil Gaiman adaptation. Emily Browning also stars, along with Jonathan Tucker, Orlando Jones, Yetide Badacki and Kristin Chenoweth.

“American Gods” airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on Starz.