The State of Women’s Wrestling: WWE

Standard

womenstitle

2015 was the Year of the Divas Revolution. 2016 is the year of the Female Superstar.  The debut of the new belt is honestly amazing.  Gone is the ugly pink butterfly belt, replaced by a red, smaller version of the men’s title.

The Bella Twins, who have come a long way from being a pair of catty, mean twins who regularly cheat using one another to win their respective matches, have both retired.   Brie and Nikki were with the company for nine years (excluding a hiatus in 2012.)  In that time, Nikki was champion twice and Brie once.  One of Nikki’s reigns was the longest women’s reign of all time (your mileage may vary if you think that was a choice on WWE’s part to punish previous record holder AJ Lee, who retired abruptly after Wrestlemania last year.)

Brie was in a five-on-five tag (Naomi, Tamina, Lana, Summer Rae, and Emma vs Brie, Paige, Alicia Fox, Eva Marie, and Natalya)  match during the pre-show on Sunday.  There is nothing inherently wrong with this, until you remember that Wrestlemania was five hours long and at times felt it.  She got the win over Naomi.  However, when the women of Total Divas lifted Brie onto their shoulders, and an injured Nikki rushed into the ring to celebrate her sister’s last win, the camera cut away.  To a garbage B-roll shot of the crowd in a hallway.  Making the point that WWE didn’t really care about the retirement of one of their core “divas” after giving her husband a touching, amazing sendoff.  It’s a seemingly unintentional jab at the WWE’s attitude toward the “Divas,” a division that the Bella Twins had come to represent.

The clash over the new Women’s Championship was much less controversial, but not without problems.  The wrestling between Becky Lynch, Sasha Banks, and Charlotte (Flair) was fantastic, action packed, and in places brutal.  Becky Lynch in particular ended the match looking as though she had been in a fight, something not normally allowed in the Divas Era.  However, the match ending not on the villainous Charlotte cheating, but rather her father Ric Flair restraining Sasha Banks, threw an annoying cast.  Why was the women’s title match decided by the actions of an old man?  Yes, Charlotte couldn’t win clean and maintain her character, but she should have been the one acting dishonestly instead of her father.

On Monday, Sasha Banks beat Summer Rae via submission, while Natalya beats her tonight on Smackdown (they tape on Tuesdays, the internet tells you immediately.)  Feeding former Total Diva Summer Rae to both women brings up the idea of the line being drawn in the sand between women the WWE believes in as wrestlers (Sasha, Becky, Charlotte, Naomi, Emma, Bayley) and the formerly ornamental women/ reality stars* who may have a difficult time finding their place in the new order of things (Summer Rae-valet for Fandango, Lana-manager for Rusev, Tamina, Alicia Fox, the reviled Eva Marie, Rosa Mendes upon her return from maternity leave.)  Also brought into question are roles for women like Paige and Natalya, who were both serious contenders during the Divas Era and reality stars.  It appears Natalya, at least, is being welcomed into the title picture, creating an interesting storyline.  What happens when the scions of two wrestling families- both talented women in their own right- go head to head?

Is WWE going to draw a line between what they may see as two types of women?  How will the women hired in a time when less skill was required to thrive in the division survive?  How will this affect the terrible but incredibly watchable Total Divas?

WWE seems to be going down a much better road in relation to their female talent, though 2016 has had pitfalls too.  Let’s hope it lasts and improves, and that all of their female talent can thrive in the future.

*I am not saying these women are untalented in any way.  I am saying they have not been utilized or taken seriously as athletic competitors on the main roster.

Didn’t You Used to Write a Blog?

Standard

So, I’ve been on radio silence since November.

I needed to step back and figure out what I wanted PNT to be.  As a news site, it’s well…it’s not really working.  Sites like the excellent The Mary Sue have more writers and resources, and it would be impossible to keep up.  Back to the drawing board.

So, we’re back, but a little different.

So many people in nerd culture are 30 or close.  Can you grow up without giving up what you love?  Of course.  We’ll talk about that.  We’ll talk about getting in shape, and getting in trouble.  We’ll talk about dreams, media, weddings, homes, parties, and careers.

We’ll still talk about nerd issues, and feminist issues, and everything’s going to come through that lens.  But we’re going to grow up, too.  We’re going to be almost 30, and nerds, and still a lot of fun.

Let’s go, nerds.

Tales from the Rumor Mill: Is Slave Leia disappearing for good?

Standard
Princess Leia in her seldom- marketed Hoth style.

Princess Leia in her seldom- marketed Hoth style.

Rumors abound that Disney is doing away with merchandise depicting the most popular Star Wars heroine in the outfit she wore when forced into slavery to Jabba the Hutt.

In the wake of Carrie Fisher telling newcomer Daisy Ridley to “keep fighting against that slave outfit,” the rumor that all further Star Wars merchandise will not feature the iconic metal bikini has caused quite the furor online.

Noted Marvel cover artist J. Scott Campbell posted the following on Facebook, which is the primary evidence anyone has for the ban:

JScottCampbellFacebook I don’t think an outright ban is the way to go on this one, but I completely agree it should not be the main outfit we see Princess Leia in.  Additionally, banning the outfit will only add value to existing Slave Leia collectibles, which is probably not the intended outcome.  I’m not that sorry that Leia can’t be drawn in a sexy pose or in the bikini on the comic book covers.  We have so, so, so much art with her in a sexy pose or in the bikini that it might be nice to force artists to be a bit more creative in their depictions of her.   I wonder if the Marvel ban comes from too much of the art for Leia being submitted being too sexy, creating the need for a ban to produce different results? I need to point out that the constant depictions of her in that outfit are seldom when she’s actually killing Jabba, which is a pretty awesome character moment for her.

I think the best solution is to simply not prioritize this outfit over everything else she’s worn.  The merchandising has admittedly over-emphasized this particular outfit of Leia’s, which is probably why annoyance and outrage abound.  Scaling back for a little while would probably be more productive than an outright ban, and much less attractive for clickbait and headlines.  For the first 2-3 years, the only female figure in the 6-inch  Black Series of prestige action figures was Slave Leia (this changed sometime in late 2014 or early 2015, when Leia’s Boushh outfit debuted. Rey has since been added, with Captain Phasma announced.) For a woman as strong, intelligent, and courageous as Leia, why emphasize the only outfit that is skin-baring and something she wore while enslaved?

What do you think?  Is it Disney/ Marvel’s corporate pandering taking things too far, or a saving throw for Leia’s character to finally get a fair depiction in the merchandise?

Edit: A reader found the question I asked unclear.  There has been backlash against Slave Leia toys in the past year, but on a very small level (I can only find one parent who complained.)  I have edited the question at the end of this post to read: “Disney/Marvel’s corporate pandering” instead of “social justice warriors.” I apologize for the confusion.

Have a Pretty Nerdy Halloween: Last Minute Costumes for You and Yours

Standard
Patterns from zombiepumpkins.com Rexy carved by me, Freddy carved by +2 Comedy's Noah.

Patterns from zombiepumpkins.com Rexy carved by me, Freddy carved by +2 Comedy’s Noah.

It’s Halloween!  Tomorrow, anyway, which means you’ve lost your chance to have anything shipped to your house.  The Halloween stores are a den of picked-over sadness, and you have a party to go to.  What are some quick-and-nerdy ideas you can throw together without budget busting?

 

Singles:

  • Steven, Steven Universe: Red T-shirt with a little yellow fabric paint.  Red flip flops.  A ukelele if you can borrow one.  However, be prepared for possible Tumblr fallout should you go in this direction.
  • Chanel Oberlin, Scream Queens: To be Chanel, you can’t be too over-the top.  Raid a Forever 21 for pretend couture, or just get a ridiculous skirt and make a KKT t-shirt.
  • The Penguin, Gotham. Get a nice dark suit (skirt suit is fine!) an umbrella, and a cane.  Lots and lots of hair gel.  Be sure to practice that limp.
  • Waldo:  Striped shirt, glasses, hat.
  • Catwoman: All black (catsuit optional) with a black mask and cat ears.
  • Doc Brown- crazy hair, white lab coat, best Christopher Lloyd impression you can do.
  • Marty McFly- denim or chambray shirt matched with a red puffer vest.
  • Wrestler of your choice- if you have the shirt, the rest is usually closet couture.  John Cena gear is particularly easy to come by.

Pairs:

I’m just going to link my Valentine’s Day cosplay article here.

Groups:

  • Disney Princesses as (X) Sailor Scouts, Star Wars characters, pinup girls, high school students, superheroes, anything you can think of- just color code things you and your friends already own!  Look at the eighteen million Buzzfeed articles on the subject.
  • That being said, My Little Ponies as anything.  Again, color coding is everything.  You might need to brave the Halloween store for a wig for everyone except Applejack, but that’s a risk you’ve gotta be willing to take.
  • The Kappas, Scream Queens.  See entry for Chanel Oberlin under “singles” and repeat as many times as needed.  #3 MUST have earmuffs.
  • The Scooby Gang: either one, from the original cartoon series OR Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • Retro Nick Characters- an old plaid shirt and  sweatshirt will make you a fine Arnold, and white short-shorts, a sky blue tee, and a screwdriver will make you Tommy Pickles faster than you can say “wait, that show debuted WHAT YEAR?!”
  • Peanuts (but for the love of everything holy don’t be like the Today Show)
Is Matt Lauer Lucy? What? What is even happening here?

Is Matt Lauer Lucy? What? What is even happening here?

 

Variant Covers: Part One: DC/ Monsters

Standard

After the success of the movie-inspired covers, DC Comics hopes to again entice comics readers to buy single issues with variant covers aplenty.  In October, the second (annual?) Monsters collection will launch.  25 variants will launch in all,  but I’m going to pick best 5 and worst 5.  I’m not into horror art for horror art’s sake, so my opinions aren’t objective.

Overall, 2014 offered a better group as far as strong, scary, iconic images.

(Editorial Note: Yes, some of these images are watermarked as belonging to other sites.  DC utilized these sites to announce these covers, and some of the sites watermarked the images.  I’d prefer to leave them whole with the watermark than pretend I have any right to them.)

 

Best:

4678579-1+action_cv45_variant

Action Comics #45
This is a beauty that brings to mind an old pulp fiction book or B-movie, and its artistic style really, really sets it apart from the pack.  This is also the most plausible of the lot, if Superman was not seen as entirely “good.”

4678580-2+fls_cv45_variant

Flash #45
Strong, weird art style that sets it apart from the gory quasi-realistic thing most of the covers go for.  It’s very weird, but I really like it.

harley-cv21-variant-solicitation

Harley Quinn #21
The Mummy is an interesting choice for Harley, and a fun one.  Points for the mallet/ pistol sarcophagus and the mummified pigtails.

STARF_Cv5_variant

Starfire #5
Again, a weird choice of monster, but strong, eye-catching art that highlights a lesser-known heroine in a great way.  The white background will also set it apart from the largely darker covers.  I’m also a big fan of the fact that this isn’t sexualized in any way, and is really just a cool battle cover for her.  This would be my favorite, except the next one is just so good.

dfbe3d7e80ce20027d0439556c81863d

Superman/ Wonder Woman #22
Come on.  This one is just so damn cool.  Wonder Woman is a harpy, and Superman as a Minotaur- classical monsters for classical heroes.  It’s a strong, iconic cover that really cements these two as the heroes through the ages, while there are clearly a lot of nods to Greek mythology all over Wonder Woman’s mythos and history.  Strong, beautiful cover that will certainly make you look twice.

 

THE WORST

BLKCA_Cv5_variant

Black Canary #5
You guys, I am so over zombies.  This brings nothing to the table.  It’s a pretty girl zombie!  Eating a brain!  We should have really gone Siren for this one, since her sonic scream is her trademark.  The style is nothing to write home about, either, which is a shame.

GL45monster

Green Lantern #45
No, really guys.  SO OVER zombies.  I like the use of white space and the lantern logo in blood, but the art itself is just not attractive.  It’s also just unimaginative.  “What should we do with Green Lantern?”  “Oh, I don’t know.  Make him a zombie.  People still like zombies, right?”

GRAY-Cv13-variant

Grayson #13
On the other hand, this is too attractive.  If I didn’t know this were a monster variant series, I wouldn’t have realized it.  It’s not a strong enough image, and it’s not visually interesting.  No effort in this at all.  He looks like Prince Eric wearing a wetsuit.

JLA_Cv5_variant_solicitation

Justice League of America #5
Actually, most of this cover is pretty cool, drawing inspiration from the Universal Monsters of Yore.  However, why is Cyborg a horse?  There is no reason at all, when either Frankenstein’s monster or the Phantom of the Opera would have been logical choices (the Phantom’s half mask could be evocative of Cyborg’s, well, cyborg-ness.)  Good cover felled by one very weird artistic choice.

AQM_Cv45_variant_solicitation

Aquaman #45
I couldn’t figure out that this was Aquaman initially.  This cover feels incoherent and weird, with a complete lack of menace or humor.  A monster cover should have at least one of those things.   The concept of Aquaman-as-sea-monster is good and the art style could have worked, but the botched execution killed this one.  I would have preferred something comparing Aquaman to Nessie.

 

 

TOSS-UP

15-10-SIn-Variant

Sinestro
This feels like a joke that got passed around some artists got submitted for a cover.  It’s really doesn’t fit into the theme, unlike Mephistopheles-Sinestro from 2014.  However, it’s a good execution of a Grumpy Cat Sinestro.  Maybe DC will do a meme variant series next year.

 

See all of the covers here!

D23: What We Learned, Part Four: Everything Else

Standard

Okay, so this is the catch-all, kids.  What doesn’t fall into the movies or theme parks comes here, to this humble final installment.  This will be presented in the order in which I care:

Yesssssss.

Yesssssss.

  • This was it for me.  I’ve always liked the idea of Kingdom Hearts more than the Gameplay, but if you toss Rapunzel and Baymax in, I’m buying.
  • Baymax appeared all in black, with the idea being that this was the original Baymax who sacrificed himself to save Hiro in the film.
disney-infinity-3.0-the-force-awakens

Rey and Finn. Finn is holding a blaster, not a lightsaber. Hmmmmm.

Disney Infinity 3.0

  • Confirmed new characters: Peter Pan, Spot (but not Arlo- The Good Dinosaur) Finn and Rey (The Force Awakens) Judy and Nick (Zootopia) and Hulkbuster and Ultron (Avengers: Age of Ultron)
  • Confirmed new playsets: Marvel Battleground and The Force Awakens
  • Four player will be enabled for the Marvel playset
  • Disney MagicBands will unlock the famous Partners statue from the Magic Kingdom.

california_screamin_concept_round_01-850x560

Magic Kingdoms

  • Mobile app that lets you build your own theme park
  • Will have plot elements- Maleficent and company decide to wreck your theme park, because that’s what they do now.

443975-star-wars-battle-pods

Star Wars Battlepods/ Battlefront

  • These were showcased as an immersive video game experience.
  • These are already out in the wild, incidentally.  I’ve seen one in person in Ocean City.
  • They’re a little claustrophobic, and one player called them “like a movie I sort of interacted with.”
  • There’s going to be a Darth Vader skinned PS4 released with Star Wars: Battlefront

John Lasseter Studio Collection

  • Lasster’s ridiculous Hawaiian shirt collection was on display, and they’re actually pretty neat to look at.

 

 

 

D23: What We Learned, Part Three: Theme Parks

Standard

With pretty much the entirety of Hollywood Studios having closed in the last year and a half,  people were expecting some pretty big things from D23.

The Mouse delivered.  Instead of release dates, we’re just going to list by project, since several of these cover multiple parks, and most of them don’t have any kind of release date anyhow.

 

Picture from Disney Parks Blog

Picture from Disney Parks Blog

Jungle Cruise Skipper Canteen, Magic Kingdom (late 2015)

  • Full Name will be Jungle Navigation Company Limited Skipper Canteen, and no one will ever call it that.
  • Was under construction for months before it was announced
  • Supposedly going to have more international flavors in its cuisine (Asian, African, and/ or South American)
  • Will be staffed by Jungle Cruise skippers, so expect lots of terrible puns.
  • Like Be Our Guest, it will have multiple themed rooms, such as a crew mess hall and a secret meeting room.
  • Unknown yet if it will be table service or counter service.

Toy-Story-Land_Full_25052

Toy Story Land, Disney’s Hollywood Studios

  • Will expand on existing Pixar Place area
  • In this land, you are a toy, shrunk down to play in Andy’s backyard
  • Two new rides have been announced: a space shuttle mission with the Little Green Men, and a Slinky Dog coaster I may already be in line for.
  • How did this take 20 years for them to do?

8_15_WDI_001

Star Wars Lands, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disneyland (no one knows)

  • Star Tours: The Adventure Continues will be updated to include prequel characters and situations, but they are not deleting any of the old tracks.  The ride will still be randomized.  Guess I will have to ride it thirty times.
  • The prequels and the Disney XD cartoon Rebels will be incorporated into the Jedi Training Academy storylines at both parks
  • We’re getting a Millennium Falcon ride!
  • We’re also getting a Space Battle ride.
  • We know very little about this, and it will take a really, really long time to build.
  • We’re getting the Cantina we’ve been begging them to turn Backlot Express into.
disney-11-rivers-of-light-050214

Concept Art, obviously, but wouldn’t that be rad.

 

Rivers of Light and Sunset Safaris, Animal Kingdom (Spring 2016)

  • In an effort to keep Animal Kingdom from being dismissed as a partial-day park, Disney is trying to up their game by adding more nighttime activities
  • Rivers of Light will be a mixed media show of, well, water and light, as well as dancers and fire.
  • Hyenas and African wild dogs are being added to the safari, which will add some nocturnal flair to the usually daytime event.
  • I really am hesitant about both the ethics and logistics about bothering the animals for nighttime.

la-trb-avatar-land-disney-animal-kingdom-20150707

Pandora: The World of Avatar (formerly known as Avatarland) Animal Kingdom (2017)

  • Instead of re-enacting the movie, the aim of this seems to be to bring people onto Pandora and let them have their own adventure, like Star Tours vs. Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh
  • Announced rides include the Flight of Passage, where you ride the back of a banshee and look over Pandora.
  • Currently under construction

IMG_6810-700x525star_wars_launch_bay

Season of the Force, Disneyland (late 2015/ early 2016)

  • Hyperspace Mountain is an overlay that will appear during the upcoming “Season of the Force” event, which I can only hope ties in the Star Wars holiday special, and is at the moment only announced for Disneyland
  • Please still be there when I go to Cali.
  • Both parks will feature the Star Wars Launch Bay, a walkthrough exhibit and playground featuring art, props, characters, and of course merchandise.  This is set to take over the Animation Courtyard of Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Tomorrowland in Disneyland.
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios will showcase a new fireworks show set to the soundtracks of the iconic films.

 

Instead of a poorly edited picture, here's Patrick Warburton instead.

Instead of a poorly edited picture, here’s Patrick Warburton instead.

Soarin’ Around the World, EPCOT and California Adventure (2016)

  • This incredibly popular attraction is getting an update to become a worldwide adventure, instead of just California.
  • Expected to arrive 2016 (probably to coincide with the long-awaited third theater for the EPCOT ride in hopes to cut down wait times.)
  • Every web site has a poorly Photoshopped picture of the ride vehicle over a landmark

D23: What We Learned, Part Two: Live Action Movies!

Standard

If we’re being honest, it’s still Monday while I’m writing Tuesday’s post.  Further to be honest, the live-action presentation gave tiny little morsels of information, but a lot of scraps.  Same deal as yesterday.  Going by release date, some pictures, some run-down.  Let’s move.

Disney's 2015-2017 release slate.  Golly, they seem busy.

Disney’s 2015-2017 release slate. Golly, they seem busy.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens (December 15, 2015)

All hail Drew Struzan.

All hail Drew Struzan.

  • Honestly, the biggest reveal here was the gorgeous Drew Struzan poster.
  • John Boyega’s Finn will wield a lightsaber (I thought/ hoped it would be Daisy Ridley’s Rey)
  • Most of the big Star Wars news will show up later.
  • Honestly, the Fall Preview issue of Entertainment Weekly had more information.

Finest Hours (January 29, 2016)

  • This is the “you don’t even go here” presentation.
  • Finest Hours is the only non-franchise release here, and it’s a man vs. nature story with Chris Pine.
  • I can’t make it clearer how little I care about this movie.
  • The January release date shows Disney doesn’t really care about it, either.
Very, very pretty and evocative.  Outside of the Marvel Photoshopped messes, their poster game is on point.

Very, very pretty and evocative. Outside of the Marvel Photoshopped messes, their poster game is on point.

The Jungle Book (April 15, 2016)

  • The voice cast for this film is stunning.  Bill Murray is Baloo, Scarlett Johanssen is Kaa, Idris Elba is Shere Khan, Christopher Walken is King Louie, Lupita Nyong’o as Raksha the wolf, and Ben Kingsley is Bagheera…did they let the internet cast this movie?
  • Jon Favreau is directing
  • The trailer was INCREDIBLY well-received.
  • Ben Kingsley dropped this incredible line: “I worked with a child and I played an animal and I would say, anytime. You have my number.”
  • This might be the surprise gem of the group.  A lot of people rolled their eyes (me included) when this was announced.

 

A really nifty graphic of D23 thanking the fans for Marvel Phase 2's completion.

A really nifty graphic of D23 thanking the fans for Marvel Phase 2’s completion.

Captain America: Civil War (May 6, 2015)

  • We got some footage, but nothing substantial, outside of the introduction of Expendable Marvel villain #285 Crossbones.
  • There’s an extension of the Ant-Man stinger that’s absolutely heartbreaking, with Cap trying to get Bucky to remember him.
  • We get to see Ant-Man meet the rest of the team, with predictable charming Paul Rudd result.
  • The main conflict is set up (and was set up in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it shot in Ant-Man) of heroes needing to be regulated and controlled.  Ant-Man had a newspaper with “Who’s to blame for Sokovia?” as a headline.
  • Disney is really, really, really good at keeping pirates out.  Jesus.  I can’t find this footage anywhere
  • Beware- there are a lot of fake trailers online.
  • Entertainment weekly has the best rundown of all of this footage

Alice2

Alice Through the Looking Glass (May 27, 2016)

  • Everyone’s back, and Sacha Baron Cohen is joining the cast as Time, who might be a villain.
  • Alice has to go back in time to save Mad Hatter…from…going darker…I guess?
  • From the picture gallery, this presentation looked hilariously lazy.  Most of the art consisted of promotional art from the previous film.  This had to have started filming for a May release, right
  • Right?
  • The posters at least equally show Alice and Hatter this time, though I’m sure that will change by the time full promotional materials are out.
  • James Bobin is directing, not Tim Burton.

The BFG (July 1, 2016)

  • Why do we know next to nothing about a movie that is being directed by Steven Spielberg?!  With the screenwriter of E.T.?
  • Again, this puppy must have started filming by now
  • Is it because it’s a dual financing project with Dreamworks?
  • The IMDB page knows more about this movie than this presentation did.  Effffff.
  • If you Google Image search, you can find really bad blurry images of a banner, and that’s about it.
The cast.  No one in the credits is named Elliott.  So is Karl Urban the dragon?

The cast. No one in the credits is named Elliott. So is Karl Urban the dragon?

Pete’s Dragon

  • So, this movie is happening.
  • The plot seems to diverge strongly from the original, with Pete being a child who lives in the forest instead of a small town, protected by a dragon that we obviously never see.
  • Bryce Dallas Howard and Robert Redford are playing Grace and her father, respectively, who I assume are an update of Nora and the drunken lighthouse keeper Lampie.
  • The trailer footage ends with a child’s hand petting something big and furry.  You know.  Big furry dragons.

 

140291_TW52331-550x366

Doctor Strange (November 4, 2016)

  • Some casting news: Tilda Swinton is playing the Ancient One, while Chiwetel Ejiofor is Mordo.
  • Benedict Cumberbatch turned up in a pre-recorded presentation to make the following promise in regard to the film: “Girls, cars, explosions, astral projection into multiple realms. The usual.”
  • No footage was revealed, because there isn’t any yet (Strange doesn’t shoot til November of this year.)
  • The origin story remains intact: “a wounded surgeon seeking alternate ways to heal his destroyed hands finds his way to a mystical Eastern sanctuary that leads him to an order that holds the keys to another dimension.” (Entertainment Weekly)

 

You win.  I'm excited about this.

You win. I’m excited about this.

Star Wars: Rogue One (December 16, 2016)

  • Star Wars: Rogue One is a midquel featuring The Theory of Everything’s Felicity Jones as the leader of a Rebel squadron attempting to steal plans for the Original Death Star, setting up the events of A New Hope.
  • Midquel means it’s the Lion King 1 1/2 of the galaxy.
  • FEMALE PROTAGONIST.
  • The movie started shooting in early August, gifting us with the above full-cast photo
  • Though Jones is the only woman of the announced cast, it’s not a cast full of scruffy, rugged white guys!  Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Forest Whitaker, Donnie Yen, Jiang Wen, and Riz Ahmed, and surprise Hannibal alum Mads Mikkelsen (because I guess he’s not busy nowadays.)  Alan Tudyk tags along as a motion capture character.

xB,P26B.jpg.pagespeed.ic.nD5sgLaySY

Beauty and the Beast (March 17, 2017)

  • We’re getting two new songs from Alan Menken and Tim Rice (the team behind Aladdin.)
  • It’s definitely a musical
  • They’re still filming, so no cast members appeared.
  • I want this movie to be good really really badly, since this was my favorite movie growing up.

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 and Star Wars Episode VIII:

  • Hey, these extensions of franchises you love?  Not even mentioned.  Womp womp.
  • Jurassic World’s Colin Trevorrow’s third movie ever is going to be Star Wars Episode IX. Movin’ on up.

D23 EXPO 2015 - D23 EXPO, the ultimate Disney fan event, brings together all the past, present and future of Disney entertainment under one roof. Taking place August 14-16, this year marks the fourth D23 EXPO at the Anaheim Convention Center and promises to be the biggest and most spectacular yet. (Disney/Image Group LA) JOHNNY DEPP

Pirates of the Caribbean V: Dead Men Tell No Tales (July 7, 2017)

  • Orlando Bloom is coming back as Will Turner, because he’s out of Hobbit and Lord of the Rings movies.
  • Geoffrey Rush is returning as friend/rival/apple enthusiast Hector Barbossa, also known as the only really good villain in the franchise.
  • Javier Bardem is joining as Captain Salazar.  Maybe, just maybe, we’ll get a good strong villain in this one?
  • No word on Keira Knightley returning- maybe this takes place before the stinger at the end of At World’s End in the ten years at sea?
  • Johnny Depp trotted out in full Jack Sparrow costume, because he lives in it anyway.

 

D23 EXPO 2015 - D23 EXPO, the ultimate Disney fan event, brings together all the past, present and future of Disney entertainment under one roof. Taking place August 14-16, this year marks the fourth D23 EXPO at the Anaheim Convention Center and promises to be the biggest and most spectacular yet. (Disney/Image Group LA) LUPITA NYONG'O, SEAN BAILEY

Queen of Katwe (no idea, and IMDB doesn’t know either)

  • We got a full presentation on this, despite the fact that there is no release date.
  • Probably because Lupita Nyong’o was already there for Star Wars and Jungle Book.
  • This is the story of a real-life Ugandan chess prodigy named Phiona Mutesi.  Nyong’o plays her mother, while Selma’s David Oyelowo plays her coach.
  • Phiona herself seems to be uncast, which makes this look pretty unlikely for a 2016 release, unless we get very close to the end of the year.

 

Thus mercifully concludes today’s coverage, in which you learn almost nothing about anything, but promised you’d cover it.  Jungle Book does look pretty rad, though.

D23: What We Learned, Part One: The Animated Movies

Standard

This weekend, D23 took over Anaheim.  The premiere convention for Disney freaks, Disney has been utilizing this convention over other venues such as San Diego to announce new projects and update us on the ones still in the pipeline.  This is almost all we’re doing this week, folks Let’s get started.  I’m going to try to work by release date here.

You came here for dinosaurs.

You came here for dinosaurs.

The Good Dinosaur (November 16, 2015)

  • The Good Dinosaur had a long haul to release, and was supposed to be released before Inside Out.
  • Pretty much all voice actors were recast.
  • Arlo, the titular dino, will be swept down river from his home, and he and feral human child Spot must find their way home.
  • Arlo has become much younger than the originial drafts, creating a “boy and his dog” feeling between the dinosaur and Spot.
  • Has been described as a “Road Trip movie”
  • Nature is as much a character in this movie as anyone, and the contrast between the cartoonish characters and the frankly gorgeous landscapes will be integral to conveying that.
Travel posters for the districts in Zootopia.

Travel posters for the districts in Zootopia.

Zootopia (March 2016)

  • We found out a little more about the plot of this movie.  It seems Jason Bateman’s fox, Nick Wilde (the most on-the-nose last name ever for an animal movie) has been framed for a crime, police officer and bunny Judy Hopps (okay, maybe that’s the most on-the-nose last name ever) is after him, and then something happens and they’re best friends.
  • The setting sounds super interesting- Zootopia is a city divided into districts based on climate for animals to live comfortably.
  • This film is very much a comedy, more than most of the films on this list.
  • Shakira will be performing a song (as a pop star/ Gazelle)
D23 EXPO 2015 - D23 EXPO, the ultimate Disney fan event, brings together all the past, present and future of Disney entertainment under one roof. Taking place August 14-16, this year marks the fourth D23 EXPO at the Anaheim Convention Center and promises to be the biggest and most spectacular yet. (Disney/Image Group LA) LINDSEY COLLINS, ANGUS MACLANE, ANDREW STANTON, ED O'NEILL, TY BURRELL, KAITLIN OLSON, ELLEN DEGENERES


LINDSEY COLLINS, ANGUS MACLANE, ANDREW STANTON, ED O’NEILL, TY BURRELL, KAITLIN OLSON, ELLEN DEGENERES

Finding Dory (June 17, 2016)

  • This movie was pushed back from this year when Good Dinosaur was pushed back, but without the troubled production
  • This movie seeks to answer the question: where is Dory’s family?  Why was she alone when she met Marlin and Nemo?
  • Lots of new characters are being introduced: Ed O’Neill as a grumpy octopus, Ty Burrell as a hypochodriac beluga(?) whale, and Kaitlyn Olson as a well-meaning whale shark (seen above with the new voice cast members.)

moana-800x400

Moana (November 2016)

  • Dwayne Johnson announced his involvement back in the springtime via Instagram, but his character has been confirmed as Maui, a legendary demi-god who teams up with the title character on her voyage
  • Moana will be the daughter of navigators and chiefs, and is going to set out to look for a legendary island.
  • Moana will officially be a member of the Disney Princess line (probably in 2017-2018, as Elsa and Anna still haven’t been officially added)
  • Moana will be a musical, with Tony-winning Lin Manuel Miranda
  • Moana is pronounced Mo-WAN-a.
  • You can watch a video of the performance below

 

IMG_3525

Toy Story 4 (June 16, 2017)

  • Toy Story 4 will be a romantic comedy between Woody and Bo Peep.  I do not have words for how happy this makes me.
  • Rashida Jones and Will McCormick of Celeste and Jesse Forever will be writing, because John Lasseter wanted a strong female voice
  • We know VERY little else, including whether Woody and Bo have been reunited after the Events of Toy Story 3, or whether this takes place before the toys left Andy.  The news sources I have seen implu the former, while the poster’s iconic wallpaper seems to imply the latter, which looks to me like we’re all going on a feels trip and I will be broken for an entire summer.

 

D23 EXPO 2015 - D23 EXPO, the ultimate Disney fan event, brings together all the past, present and future of Disney entertainment under one roof. Taking place August 14-16, this year marks the fourth D23 EXPO at the Anaheim Convention Center and promises to be the biggest and most spectacular yet. (Disney/Image Group LA) DOROTHY MCKIM, NATHAN GRENO

Image Credit: Disney 

Gigantic (2018)

  • It’s Jack and the Beanstalk. Jack is a grown man, and the giant who catches him is 11-year old Imma
  • Kristen Anderson Lopez and Robert Lopez will be writing the music for this movie, and performed a song called “My Little Man.”
  • Disney is freakishly good at not letting any of these things get pirated.  My God.  I tried to find this video for you, I really did.

565171445SH00065_Pixar_And_-550x454

Coco (2018)

  • This is Pixar’s Dia de los Muertos movie.
  • the main character will be a little boy named Miguel who unravels a generations-old mystery.  So, like, if ParaNorman and Book of Life had a baby that actually made some money.
  • I learned Disney owns Grim Fandango today, and I’m really just mad this isn’t a Grim Fandango movie.

Tune in the rest of this week to see what we learned about Live-Action films and Disney Theme Parks!

Breaking: Star Wars and Cover Girl team up this September

Standard

(Disclaimer:  No one is paying me to write this, but if anyone wants to send me free makeup, I’ll totally take it.)

 

On September 4th (a full three months and change ahead of the new film,) Cover Girl will launch six lipsticks, three nail polishes, and two mascaras based on the evergreen merchandising opportunity that is Star Wars.

The lipsticks are named simply:  Gold, Red, Violet, Nude, Lilac, and Silver.  The nail polishes are Speed of Light (which is a fairly greige color) Nemesis (a dark plummy red) and Red Revenge…which is red.

The mascaras are much plainer:  Dark side is regular, and Light Side is waterproof.  But each one has a quote on the side: collect all 10!

 

covergirl-star-wars-limited-edition-mascara-iconic-quotes-VAs a geek who likes makeup and has a shameful addiction to ridiculous movie product tie-ins, I’m essentially the target audience for this, but I can’t help but feel like this is a little lazy.  Like, seriously?  The lipstick colors  could have been named way more creatively.  For a collection launching in three weeks, I haven’t seen a thing about them.  They stuck a logo on the packaging and expected us to collect ten mascaras because they all have a different quote on them.

Where’s the cute eyeshadow palette?  The nifty eyeliners that look like lightsabers?  A blush stick shaped like my beloved R2-D2?  Come on, guys.  I’m barely even trying and I’ve come up with three solid ideas.

That being said, I’m going to buy a lipstick or two.

It’s still not as bad as the Capitol Makeup collection they launched three years ago for The Hunger Games.

(Source: allure.com)


Warning: array_key_exists() expects parameter 2 to be array, null given in /home/content/p3nexnas05_data03/18/2126618/html/wp-content/themes/icy/lib/core.php on line 700

Warning: in_array() expects parameter 2 to be array, null given in /home/content/p3nexnas05_data03/18/2126618/html/wp-content/themes/icy/lib/core.php on line 764