WHAT SHOULD I BE DOING INSTEAD OF THIS?
 
 
by John Hamilton 03.19.2015 107 days ago
at 10:45 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Reel Redux: Ghostbusters and the Potential Cinematic Universe

In the first installment of "Reel Redux" I brought up the upcoming Ghosbusters reboot, so I figured I’d talk about it more in this edition.I don’t think I need to remind you about what Ghostbusters is, right? Well, for the five of you who don’t know the plot, here’s a summary: The titular group of the franchise are scientists who go around New York City busting ghosts. There, that was easy. How could anyone not love these movies, or at least the first one? You have the sarcastic Bill Murray, the enthusiastic Dan Aykroyd, the late Harold Ramis, who possessed great dry comedic timing (he also co-wrote the screenplay with Aykroyd), and Ernie Hudson as the Everyman. Not only that, but they’re given giant laser cannons for zapping and trapping ghosts of all shapes are sizes! What’s not to like? Recently it was announced that a reboot is in the works, this time featuring an all-female cast. This version will feature Kristin Wiig (Bridesmaids), Oscar-nominee Melissa McCarthy and Saturday Night Live cast members Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon. Right off the bat I’ll say it: I am not opposed to the idea of an all-female cast. Not at all. Although I was kind of hoping to see Tina Fey and Amy Poehler in the cast. To paraphrase someone on Twitter (I couldn’t find the original tweet) who said it best, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are today’s equivalent of Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd. But nevertheless I’m all for this cast. I mean, why not? Why not have an all-female cast? But there is one thing that makes me worried about it. I’m worried that all this movie will be, “It’s the Ghosbusters… but they’re girls!” And that’s it. I’m worried that the film will make jokes about the fact that this time around the group will be played by girls. For example, they’ll paint the Ecto-1 pink, or have one of the girls put a bunch of flowers on their proton pack. One can only hope they don’t resort to that. There’s one other thing that has popped up involving the Ghosbusters franchise that is causing a bit of stir: Sony is planning on having an all-male cast in yet another Ghostbusters reboot, thus building its own cinematic universe to go along with it. Oh dear. On the surface I have no problem with the idea of Sony wanting to build a Ghosbusters universe — it sounds incredibly cool — but Sony has a short but rather poor history of trying to build a universe with popular franchises. Mainly, their attempts at building an Amazing Spider-Man franchise. I’m not calling those films bad, mind you, but it’s obvious that Sony was trying a little too hard to compete with Marvel’s cinematic universe. The concept of an expanded universe is nothing new to Ghostbusters. I’m mainly referring to the ending of the 2009 video game where the four original members hinted about opening another office in another city, which sounds awesome to me. But again, my concern is with who’s handling it. If I was handling it, I would take it very slowly. Let the first movie come out, see how well that did and if it did well, then I’d work on the next film. Which seems like it should be obvious, but, whatever, I’m not the head of a major film studio. One thing I’m hoping for at some point in the franchise, which may not happen, is I’d like to see a New Generation kind of movie. Recruit Aykroyd and Hudson as their characters and have them train a new group. Make it a mixed group of people of various backgrounds. I’m not asking for a Captain Planet kind of thing, but have this be about  the old guys passing the torch onto the next group. It could be good. In the meantime, I will wait and check out the new installment and hope for the best and I will, of course, check out the originals and enjoy them because no matter what happens those films will still be there.
 
 
by Jac Kern 01.29.2015
Posted In: Movies, Music, TV/Celebrity at 01:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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I Just Can't Get Enough

Jac's roundup of pop culture news and Internet findings

The Ghostbusters reboot has its leading ladies! Director/co-writer Paul Feig posted a picture on Twitter of what he’s confident will be the next ghost-busting foursome: Talk about some badass funnywomen. Now, considering that tweets aren’t legally binding at this point, it isn’t an official cast announcement. But why would Feig lie to us? Let’s indulge the speculation. First up is Kristen Wiig. The MVP of recent Saturday Night Live alumnae has previously worked with Feig on Bridesmaids. Just like Melissa McCarthy — also an excellent pick. It’s not really a surprise that McCarthy is on board, considering the script is also co-written by The Heat writer Katie Dippold, but it’s still a solid cast pick. Then we’ve got two current SNL castmates: Leslie Jones (who just joined the cast this season) and Kate McKinnon (who I am super pumped to see on the big screen for a change). No other details have been announced yet (including a title, plot summary or release date), but I’d love to see Sarah Silverman as Slimer. In music news, Sam Smith has been ordered to share writing credits and royalties from his breakout hit “Stay With Me” with Tom Petty and songwriter Jeff Lynne, because it turns out that shit is almost identical to “I Won’t Back Down.” Yeah, it’s kind of depressing that all popular songs basically sound the same, but what’s interesting about the whole situation is how cool Smith and his people have been about it. Apparently as soon as the similarities were pointed out, Smith paid up and the whole thing stayed out of the courts. He claims it was just a coincidence and that he in fact had never heard the song — one of the most recognizable Rock songs of its time (OK, gurl) — but this could have been a whole lot messier. So yay, we get to keep liking Sam Smith! The next season of Hannibal may be pushed back until summer, but we’ve got a peek at some new characters joining the show. Rutina Wesley, a.k.a. Tara from True Blood, and Glenn Flesher, a.k.a. the Yellow King from True Detective, are both in for Season Three. Presented without comment: Bruce Jenner will have an E! reality show following his “journey.” For those not in the Kardashian know (consider yourself lucky/a great human), many have been speculating whether Jenner is transgender and in the process of transitioning. In Touch magazine even went so far as to put this altered image on a January cover. Whatever the journey is, we trust it will be covered respectfully and delicately, as only E! knows how. Cult David Wain comedy Wet Hot American Summer is getting the TV-prequel treatment with the upcoming Netflix series Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp.   It’s pretty exciting to see the entire cast is back (including those who have gone way beyond absurdist comedies, like Bradley Cooper), and still takin’ it higher and higher! After what’s felt like an eternity, RuPaul’s Drag Race fans finally have their Season Seven premiere date. On March 2, a new gaggle of queens will debut on Logo along with some new judges — Santino Rice has been replaced (but will still guest-judge) by Queer Eye’s Carson Kressley and human hedgehog on helium Ross Mathews. Prepare your earholes accordingly. Peep the trailer here. Related: RuGarrison Keillor (@RuG_Keillor) is your pop culture mash-up du jour. The Screen Actors Guild Awards were Sunday and, as per usual, it was a snoozefest. Any award show where all people talk about on the red carpet is another more important award show (the Oscars) can’t possibly be that good. Wake me up when there’s a SAAG Award, because I would definitely be more interested in Indian food than this shit. But here are some highlights: Zach Galifianakis is also transitioning…into a ghost of his former self. The Orange Is the New Black cast won Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series and were all super cute (Uzo “Crazy Eyes” Aduba also snagged an Actor — that’s what they call those ugly SAG trophies). And Viola Davis gave a touching speech while accepting an award for her work on How to Get Away With Murder. But the best part of the night was on the red carpet, where A-listers SNUBBED the mani cam! Apparently the women wanted to avoid sexist reporting tactics — yet none clammed up when asked about their dress, jewels, hair or make up, nor when told how beautiful they were. Hmm. Instead, I like to imagine Jennifer Aniston sent a group text to all her fellow Oscar nominees leading ladies warning them to stay away from the finger-sized red carpet like a mean girl telling all of her friends not to sit with Susie at lunch today. Find all the winners here.
 
 
by Mike Breen 06.08.2012
Posted In: Music Video, Music History, Music News at 12:02 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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This Date in Music History: June 8

Huey Lewis vs. Ghostbusters and happy 35th birthday Kanye West

On this date in 1984, the comedy motion picture Ghostbusters opened. It would go on to be ranked on the American Film Institute's list of the greatest film comedies ever at No. 28 (though they did rank Tootsie No. 2, so … grain of salt). Besides doing boffo numbers at the box office ($238.6 million, which is like double that in today's dollars), the movie also gave us that unforgettable (for better or worse) theme song by Ray Parker Jr. (the rest of the soundtrack included such icons as Thompson Twins and Air Supply). Like the film, the single was a hit upon its release and caught the attention of Huey Lewis — and every other person on the planet who had heard his 1983 hit with The News, "I Want a New Drug." The song features the same rhythm, similar vocal inflections and melody and, most glaringly, a practically identical bass line, so Lewis' answer to Parker Jr.'s "Who you gonna call?" was "My lawyer!" To make matters worse, Lewis (as well as Lindsey Buckingham) had reportedly been approached to write the theme song to Ghostbusters, but was too busy with Back to the Future soundtracking. It took a while, but in 1995, an "amicable" settlement was reached.One of the stipulations of the settlement was that neither party could discuss it (or the case) with anyone (especially the public). But in 2001, Lewis talked about the controversy and lawsuit in his Behind the Music special on VH1. Lewis said, "The offensive part was not so much that Ray Parker Jr. had ripped this song off, it was kind of symbolic of an industry that … wanted our wave, and they wanted to buy it. (It's) not for sale. ... In the end, I suppose they were right. I suppose it was for sale, because, basically, they bought it."So Parker sued Lewis in 2001 for talking about the case. He claimed that the agreement they had reached was "directly related to (Ray's) comfort, happiness and welfare" and that Huey's statement caused him emotional distress. I can't find info on whatever happened in that case, but it seems logical to assume another settlement was reached. And this time, so far, everyone's kept their mouth shut.What do you think? I think they both could have been sued by British Synth Pop project M, whose biggest hit, "Pop Muzik," also sounds similar … and came out in 1979! Maybe this legal kerfuffle can stretch into a fourth decade. Check all three out below and you be the judge.Born This Day: Musical movers and shakers sharing a June 8 birthday include daughter of Frank and artist in her own right, Nancy Sinatra (1940); one of the founding members of Parliament/Funkadelic, Fuzzy Haskins (1941); one of the vocalists for rockers Three Dog Night, Chuck Negron (1942); Ohio native and ’70s hitmaker Boz Scaggs (1944); the singer who made the blissfully craptastic video for "Total Eclipse of the Heart" possible, Bonnie Tyler (1951); Bluegrass (and beyond) guitar great Tony Rice (1951); influential guitarist (with Black Flag) and label operator (with SST Records) Greg Ginn (1954); Rod Stewart fill-in and Simply Red frontman Mick Hucknall (1960); keyboardist for New Romantic superstars Duran Duran, Nick Rhodes (1962); guitarist and founder of The Derek Truck Band (duh), member of The Allman Brothers Band and co-founder of the Tedeschi Trucks Band (with wife Susan Tedeschi), Derek Trucks (1979); fiddler known for her solo work and her time with the group Nickel Creek, Sara Watkins (1981); and Hip Hop musical genius (yes, just because he knows it, too, doesn't mean he isn't one) Kanye West (1977). As a happy 35th birthday present, we offer something we know West will appreciate — free publicity (and calling him a genius — that counts as part of the gift, too!). In return, I expect a pair of Air Yeezy II sneakers for MY birthday. Here's "Mercy," West's latest video (another thing he is especially good at making) for his track with 2 Chainz, Big Sean and Pusha-T. (It says "explicit," but just for a couple of salty words here and there; mildly NSFW. I guess. I mean, I don't know where you work.)
 
 

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