Locarno StepIn: 5 Takeaways on Envisaging a Healthier Workplace in the Film Industry
The Locarno Film Festival’s annual StepIN think tank dedicated to pressing issues faced by the independent film community saw a select group of mostly European industry executives thrash out some of the root causes that can make the film industry a toxic environment to work in and discuss ideas for positive practices that can hopefully […]
Variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 13:12

Charlotte Colbert and Rupert Everett on Exploring ‘How Trauma Blurs the Boundaries of Time’ in Locarno Horror Feature ‘She Will’
Charlotte Colbert has often explored physical and psychological trauma in her artwork. It’s perhaps little surprise, then, that her feature debut “She Will” centers Veronica (Alice Krige), a former child star who has just had a double mastectomy and who is repressing mental wounds under a caustic British exterior. Described as a psychological horror title, […]
Variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 11:38

Oscars Predictions: Best Director – Will There Be a Shortage of Women Directors in the Running?
Variety's Awards Circuit is home to the official predictions for the upcoming Oscars and Emmys ceremonies from film awards editor Clayton Davis. Following history, buzz, news, reviews and sources, the Oscar and Emmy predictions are updated regularly with the current year's list of contenders in all categories. Variety's Awards Circuit Prediction schedule consists of four […]
Variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 09:02

Bob Odenkirk Jokes About ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ Week in Recovery Update

Bob Odenkirk continues to recover from the heart attack that sent what feels like the entire world into a minor panic attack a week ago. But if you’re worried about any setbacks, don’t be: On Friday night he updated fans about his condition, joking that the experience of learning how many people worried about him has been akin to the end of “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

“I am doing great. I’ve had my very own “It’s a wonderful life” week of people insisting I make the world slightly better. Wow! Thank you, I love everyone right now but let’s keep expectations reasonable!” Odenkirk said in a statement posted on Twitter.

On July 27, Odenkirk had what he later described as a “small heart attack” during filming of the final season of AMC’s “Better Call Saul,” and was rushed to a nearby hospital. A massive outpouring of affection and concern for the actor followed from fans and friends like David Cross and Bryan Cranston.

A day after he entered the hospital, Odenkirk’s family announced that after a touch and go period, he would be making a full recovery — or as his son, Nate put it, “He’s going to be OK.” This prompted an equally massive outpouring of relief from fans and friends.

I am doing great. I’ve had my very own “It’s a wonderful life” week of people insisting I make the world slightly better. Wow! Thank you, I love everyone right now but let’s keep expectations reasonable!

— Mr. Bob Odenkirk (@mrbobodenkirk) August 7, 2021
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Bob Odenkirk Is 'Doing Great,' Friend David Cross Says: 'You Will Be Hearing From Him Soon'

Bob Odenkirk Is OK, Cue the Collective Sigh of Relief: 'Oh Thank God'

'Nobody' Film Review: Bob Odenkirk Blows His Stack and His Cover in Delirious Shoot 'Em Up

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 07:39

Disney Plus Hotstar Reveals First Trailer for Moghul Era Epic Series ‘The Empire’ (EXCLUSIVE)
Leading Indian streamer Disney Plus Hotstar has revealed the first trailer for its magnum opus series “The Empire.” The eight-episode series is based on Alex Rutherford’s bestselling “Empire of the Moghuls” novels, a racy, fictionalized version of the history of the Moghul empire, which dominated South Asia from 1526 to 1720. Season 1 is based […]
Variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 07:30

Bill Maher Is Very Concerned About ‘Women Classic’ in Debate Over Trans Athletes

Bill Maher’s top-of-the-show guest was two-time Olympic gold medalist Donna de Varona who, in addition to her celebrated swimming career is also a supporter of Idaho’s transphobic 2020 bill banning trans women student athletes from competing in female sports.

So naturally the conversation concerned the issue, which is currently being stoked by primarily right wing groups, of whether trans athletes should be allowed to compete in the sports division corresponding to their gender identity.

We can say fairly confidently that probably no one except for Maher and de Varona came away satisfied by the conversation, which ultimately meandered and expressed confusion about trans issues generally, and produced some awkward and pretty cringe jokes. Such as Maher telling de Varona “What you’re trying to do is find a middle ground, right? How can we be fair to, let’s say, women classic?”

De Varona is a member of a group called the Women’s Sports Policy Working Group, which was formed in response to Joe Biden’s executive order in January that ordered all schools receiving federal funding to allow trans athletes to compete in the sport of their gender. The group insists it supports the rights of transgender people and opposes discrimination, but also is against that order. It claims its goal is to protect “the girls’ and women’s competitive categories, while crafting accommodations for trans athletes into sport wherever possible.”

As critics have pointed out, the group seeking to craft “accommodations” for trans athletes has no trans members.

In any case, the meandering conversation talked a lot about the issue, though as we noted above it also sought to contend with general issues pertaining to transgender people. How successful you think that was probably depends on whether or not you agree with de Varona’s position.

Maher and de Varona talked about how, in her words, “the nomenclature is confusing,” about biological differences between sexes, and, let’s be real, their difficulty adjusting to changing times.

“We need to have the discussion, and if you even broach this — and this is part of the problem — is that you get called transphobic? It’s not transphobic. Phobia means fear, right? And yes, I’m afraid you’re nuts if you think just having a discussion means we’re afraid of something, We’re not afraid. This is all very new. This is new stuff,” Maher said at one point.

And later of course, Maher summed up the Women’s Sports Policy Working Group’s goals, saying “What you’re trying to do is find a middle ground, right? How can we be fair to, let’s say, women classic? But also allow a place where — we don’t want to discriminate against trans people. No one wants that. No one smart.”

When asked what the “middle ground” position is, de Varona replied “Well, the middle ground according to us is that there are sports that do accommodate, equestrian, doesn’t matter male or female. Most of the British teams…” 

“You’re saying they can only play some sports?” Maher asked. 

“That’s right. And you can handicap,” de Varona replied. “If you look at the sports community, it has accommodated a range of differences. Paralympics, special Olympics, they didn’t exist in my time. We opened the door.”

The rest of the conversation covered topics and points people familiar with this argument have heard plenty of times: Discomfort with pronoun preferences; testosterone; wokeness; concerns that supporting trans inclusion in sports could harm Democratic election chances; whether kids today are too unreasonable in their demands for social change. You don’t need us to recap it.

Related stories from TheWrap:

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RuPaul's Drag Race: All the Transgender Queens (Photos)

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 06:19

‘American Horror Stories': Billie Lourd on Liv’s Demon-Banishing Ritual Scene

(Warning: This post contains spoilers for “American Horror Stories” Episode 5, “Ba’al.”)

“American Horror Story” franchise veteran Billie Lourd has played everything from a liberal college student turned cult member to a ghost to a Manson family member. And now for the fifth episode of FX on Hulu’s thriller (which was released Thursday), she plays Liv Whitley, a woman desperate to be pregnant and have a baby, after five failed rounds of IVF.

But, of course, no story in the “American Horror Story” universe can stop right there. So as the episode continues, Liv takes a creepy little demon statue from the fertility clinic’s receptionist, Bernadette (Virginia Gardner), to put under her bed while she and her husband, Matt (Ronen Rubinstein), are being intimate in hopes that a little magic might help along conception.

Does it work? Yes! But, at a cost — Liv starts seeing the demon in her baby monitor and hearing strange noises and voices in her house. Eventually, she decides to perform a ritual to get rid of the little devil, but in doing so, she ends up accidentally stabbing Matt with the ritual dagger. And a couple of weeks later, she’s in a mental hospital.

In the episode’s first twist, we learn that it was actually Matt and his high-school friends working together to gaslight Liv with costumes, hallucination-inducing drugs and special effects into thinking the demon (Ba’al) was real so he could divorce her and take her money. But turns out, the demon is real and — per Liv’s orders — murders Matt’s friends, landing him in prison, while Liv promises to release the demon if it can give her another baby.

TheWrap interviewed Lourd via email about the episode and its twists upon twists, which you can read below.

TheWrap: You became a new mom this fall — congrats! So how did you bring in your own experiences as a new mother into this storyline and character?

Billie Lourd: Any moms out there know having a baby is full of ups and downs. It is extremely exhausting but also the most incredible experience in the world. I thankfully have never seen demons in my baby monitor, but my experience as a mom definitely gave me insight into how delusional sleep deprivation can make you feel. 

Can you talk about what it was like shooting the ritual and stabbing scene?

We shot that scene at 3 a.m. and I was almost as delusional as my character was. I had woken up at 5 a.m. with my real life baby and reciting all that Latin after being awake for 22+ hours was no joke (reciting Latin on a normal amount of sleep is no joke). 

What was your reaction to the first twist and finding out that your character’s husband was in on the chaos?

It was shocking and deeply devastating! Liv and Matt had gone through so much together and he seemed like he was the ultimate supportive husband but that was obviously NOT the case. 

And we end on a bit of a cliffhanger. Do you think your character gets Ba’al to give her another baby? What’s next for her?

I think Liv is the ultimate girl boss (as the kids say) and will make anything she wants happen for her. I think she definitely gets Ba’al to give her that second baby! 

Did you have a way to remember the spells you had to recite?

I recorded the Latin spells on my phone and listened to them on the way to work and when I had downtime on set and repeated them out loud religiously. I’ve had to recite Latin multiple times on “AHS” now and it never gets easier! 

We know you’re going to be in “AHS: Double Feature.” Is there anything you can tell us about the season?

As always, I am sworn to secrecy and will be arrested by the “AHS” police if I reveal any secrets!!! 

New episodes of “American Horror Stories” will premiere Thursdays on FX on Hulu.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 04:14

How ‘The Green Knight’ Makeup Team Transformed Actor Ralph Ineson
The eponymous mythical entity in David Lowery’s Arthurian reinterpretation “The Green Knight” was as tactile on set as it appears on screen. Imposing and oaken, this embodiment of the unknown (death and nature) is played by actor Ralph Ineson (“The Witch”) with masterful prosthetics from seasoned makeup effects artist Barrie Gower (“Game of Thrones”) and […]
Variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 04:01

Chris Cuomo to Take Pre-Planned Vacation Amid Brother Andrew Cuomo’s Harassment Scandal

Chris Cuomo is set to begin a pre-planned, weeklong vacation, the anchor said on a CNN podcast on Monday.

The vacation comes after a week in which the New York attorney general issued a report detailing multiple allegations of sexual harassment against his brother, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. Chris Cuomo, who has not covered his brother’s scandal on his CNN primetime show, described the vacation as a pre-planned yearly tradition.

“Every year, I take my birthday week off,” Cuomo said on CNN’s “The Handoff” podcast, which he co-hosts with fellow CNN host Don Lemon. “I’m looking forward to it.”

Cuomo said he would be spending the week at his home in Long Island with his family.

New York Attorney General Letitia James announced Tuesday that Andrew Cuomo was found to have violated laws, created a hostile work environment, harassed staffers and even retaliated after being publicly accused. The governor denied the allegations of misconduct in a press conference earlier this week, saying he “never touched anyone inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual advances.”

Chris Cuomo has previously said he would not cover the accusations against his brother on “Cuomo Prime Time,” noting that other CNN shows would be better equipped to handle the story. “Obviously, I cannot cover it because he is my brother,” the host said on his show back in March.

It was later reported that the host also advised his brother and members of the governor’s staff after the scandal first broke, a move CNN called “inappropriate.” According to a New York Times report earlier this week, CNN executives earlier this year offered to let Cuomo take a leave of absence from the network to formally advise his brother, an offer the host declined.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 03:49

Why James Gunn Was ‘Afraid’ to Cast Sylvester Stallone in ‘The Suicide Squad’ – at First

James Gunn wrote the role of King Shark specifically for Sylvester Stallone, but as he explains it, he was afraid at first to approach Stallone about playing the part. The two worked together previously on “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2.”

“I actually had hired three different actors. I wrote the role for Sylvester Stallone. I was afraid… Sly’s my friend. … What if it didn’t work? He’s Sly! “I would’ve just had to have a voice that didn’t work,” Gunn said at a promotional event attended by TheWrap in july.

So while Steve Agee, who also plays Belle Reve warden John Economos, did the King Shark motion capture on set, they tried to audition a ton of actors to get the voice right.

“So we had a huge audition process with tons of voice actors. We had one voice actor come in and do the whole movie. It didn’t work,” Gunn said. “We had another voice actor come in and do the whole movie. He didn’t come to life. We had an actor — a really, really famous actor who was also a friend of mine — come in and do the voice. And that didn’t work!”

Ultimately, Gunn finally approached Stallone and the rest as they say is history.

“And then I was like, ‘Guys, I don’t know what to do. I think I have to go to Sly.’ And I called up Sly. He said he would love to do it. He came in and right away, that character just sort of came to life,” Gunn added.

With the movie finally out in theaters and on HBO Max, Stallone is winning audiences over with his performance as King Shark. Here is a sampling.

“King Shark steals the show!” wrote one Twitter user.

@JamesGunn’s #TheSuicideSquad is bloody fantastic. The perfect mix of action, humor, and all-around comic book goodness. King Shark steals the show! Definitely one of my favorite DC films to date.

— Trey (@TheTreyinator) July 30, 2021

“No matter what you say, #KingShark was by far the most loveable and entertaining character in #TheSuicideSquad,” wrote another Twitter user.

No matter what you say, #KingShark was by far the most loveable and entertaining character in #TheSuicideSquad


— Keira | 76 days till ???? (@keirariek_) August 6, 2021

Here are some more tweets.

King Shark really was the best part of Suicide Squad. Followed by the violence.

— Iceberg Slim (@TheOGMikeLowery) August 6, 2021

The hype for suicide squad was huge. and the king @JamesGunn delivered.

King Shark is my new favourite DC character

— Daniel (@Hydr0Liq) August 6, 2021

I finally saw The Suicide Squad and it's official. King Shark, welcome to my favorite characters club. pic.twitter.com/URCZFrVCEd

— Austin Torres (@AustinMTorres) August 6, 2021

Man did I miss @JamesGunn! He directs with such distinct style, wit, charm and verve! I LOVED The Suicide Squad! Idris Ilba is a stand-out for me! And KING SHARK steals every scene. John Cena’s best role, he cracked me up as PEACEMAKER! Looking forward to the spin-off series!

— robliefeld (@robertliefeld) August 6, 2021


— Basel (@bagelemon) August 6, 2021
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All the Major Deaths in 'The Suicide Squad' Ranked

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thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 02:55

Why ‘Only Murders in the Building’ Star Selena Gomez Was ‘Super Paranoid’ About That ‘Infamous’ On-Set Photo Leak

Selena Gomez was caught red-shirted on the set of Hulu’s upcoming murder-mystery limited series, “Only Murders in the Building,” in what she calls an “infamous” paparazzi photo that made her “super paranoid” that fans would misinterpret when it was published.

“I got an infamous photo from set (laughs),” Gomez said — referring to the picture of her in-character, covered in fake blood and being perp-walked — during a virtual panel for the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour on Friday. “You know what? I actually was worried for a second, but because there was so much going on, I knew that what people were going to see isn’t exactly the ending of anything, per se. So, at first, I was super paranoid. But I think once it came out, it was what it was.”

Per Hulu, “Only Murders In The Building” follows three strangers (Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez) who share an obsession with true crime and suddenly find themselves wrapped up in one. When a grisly death occurs inside their exclusive Upper West Side apartment building, the trio suspects murder and employs their precise knowledge of true crime to investigate the truth. As they record a podcast of their own to document the case, the three unravel the complex secrets of the building which stretch back years. Perhaps even more explosive are the lies they tell one another. Soon, the endangered trio comes to realize a killer might be living amongst them as they race to decipher the mounting clues before it’s too late.

“I don’t think you can interpret a plot point of the show from a photograph of anything we did,” Martin, who also co-created the series with (“Grace & Frankie,” “Looking”), said during the panel. “Because we have, you know, 10 hours of show. And a split-second photograph is not going to reveal anything, I don’t think.”

“If anything, it just confuses them,” Selena Gomez added. “I like that.”

Martin and Hoffman executive produce “Only Murders in the Building” along with Short, Gomez, Jamie Babbit, “This Is Us” creator Dan Fogelman and Jess Rosenthal.

The series premieres Aug. 31 on Hulu, with new episodes rolling out weekly after the initial launch.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 02:48

Robert Durst Trial to Continue on Monday After COVID-19 Scare

Robert Durst’s murder trial will resume on Monday as planned after Thursday’s hearing was cut short when it was discovered that someone in attendance had tested positive for COVID-19.

“Judge Mark E. Windham recessed the trial yesterday after notification that an individual present in the courtroom — but not a member of either trial team — had tested positive for COVID-19,” a statement from the court read. “Furthermore, Judge Windham learned that this individual — in defiance of strict COVID-19 court and public health protocols — had been experiencing symptoms for several days but nonetheless attended the trial.”

The statement added, “After review of the facts, including contact tracing and an assessment of close contacts under established public health definitions, Judge Windham and the Court have determined that the circumstances do not warrant further recess of the trial.”

The person who tested positive was a relative of someone on Durst’s legal team, an individual with knowledge told TheWrap. News of the positive test was first reported by the New York Daily News.

Robert Durst — the multimillionaire real estate heir and subject of the HBO crime documentary “The Jinx” who is accused of killing his close friend, Susan Berman, in 2000 — is expected to take the witness stand next week in his defense. He has pled not guilty to the first-degree murder charge.

Berman was murdered in her Beverly Hills home, hours before she was to going to talk to investigators about the disappearance of Durst’s first wife, Kathleen McCormack Durst in 1982. Durst was a suspect in the investigation and prosecutors allege that he had confided in Berman that he had killed Kathleen, and that she helped him cover it up.

This trial also marks the second time that Durst has stood trial for murder, as he was acquitted of the murder and dismemberment of neighbor Morris Blake in Galveston, Texas in 2003, claiming that it was in self-defense.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 02:45

‘Stillwater’ Director Tom McCarthy on Casting Matt Damon Against Type and Amanda Knox Criticism
In his new film “Stillwater,” co-writer/director Tom McCarthy wanted to present the image of an American hero – and then turn it on its head. The film, now in theaters, stars Matt Damon as Bill Baker, a roughneck from the titular town in Oklahoma who travels to Marseille, France to visit his imprisoned daughter Allison […]
Variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 02:41

All the Major Deaths in ‘The Suicide Squad’ Ranked

Warning: MAJOR spoilers ahead for “The Suicide Squad.” You have been explicitly warned

“The Suicide Squad” has finally arrived in theaters and on HBO Max and, as director James Gunn promised, there is a whole lot of death. In fact, there are so many deaths that it’s hard to keep an accurate headcount of those who don’t make it through the film. But there are definitely some deaths that pack a little more punch than others.

Unfortunately for those in the opening minutes of the film, it becomes apparent right away that dubbing them the “Suicide Squad” wasn’t necessarily an over-exaggeration — their mission is ridiculously dangerous. It’s dangerous to the point that Amanda Waller’s (Viola Davis) subordinates are openly taking bets on who will die, how it’ll happen, and when they’ll go.

But, rather than starting a dead pool ourselves, we decided to keep a running list of the fatalities, and rank which ones hit the hardest. Obviously this list is subjective, but we’ll show our work for each one. An important note: We are only sticking to deaths that actually, well, stuck, for this list. If “The Suicide Squad” taught us anything, it’s that just because someone seems dead, doesn’t necessarily mean they are dead.

11. Blackguard

Pete Davidson’s Blackguard was the very first to bite the dust in “The Suicide Squad” — although more accurately, he bit the bullet — meeting his end before the 10-minute mark even hits.

Upon arriving on the beach with the rest of his team, Blackguard immediately steps out of hiding with his hands up, revealing that he sold out his teammates. And then he promptly gets his face blown off by some unseen gunman. It’s visceral, and it immediately sets the tone for what James Gunn wants to do with this film.

This is by no means the least memorable death, but it is the one that packs the least amount of emotional punch. Beyond a few funny moments with Weasel on the plane, Blackguard really didn’t make much of an impression.

10. Mongal

Mongal’s death might have actually been the least memorable one, which is disappointing, because she actually goes out in a pretty badass way. While fighting her way through the beach, Mongal launches herself onto one of the landing gears on the enemy helicopter.

She successfully brings it down to the ground using brute strength, but she doesn’t manage to get herself out of the fiery crash. It is solely the coolness of her last act, plus the fact that she didn’t sell out the other squad members, that places her above Blackguard.

9. T.D.K

Oh Nathan Fillion. You could’ve done wonders in the DC Universe. Sadly, T.D.K, otherwise known as The Detachable Kid, was also among the very first batch of deaths. He was at least semi-useful before he died, detaching his arms to stealthily fight from a distance. But dying in the middle of a firefight, a limbless torso, is just a rough beat. Had we had just a little more time with T.D.K., it might’ve connected more, emotionally, but nonetheless, he deserved better.

8. Savant

If Blackguard was the most visceral death, then Savant was a close second. Like in David Ayer’s “Suicide Squad,” an example needed to be made of someone, to let them know just how serious — and absolutely terrifying — Amanda Waller can be.

So, when Savant looked around and realized just how much a Suicide Squad was not an extracurricular activity he wanted to be part of, he did what any rational person might do: He ran. And as he ran, he was warned that desertion would result in death. And indeed, Waller remotely blew his head clean off.

It’s brutal, made only harder to watch by the fact that Savant is played by the chaotic treasure that is Michael Rooker. If he hadn’t killed that bird in his jail cell, he might rank a little higher on this list. But yet again, we needed more time to really care at all about Savant.

7. Javelin

Listen, you can’t bring a javelin to a gunfight. You just can’t. So, seeing Flula Borg’s take on Javelin die early on in “The Suicide Squad” wasn’t all that surprising. You may be surprised that his death ranked above Savant or Blackguard though.

Well, here’s the thing: Javelin had a pretty lasting impact on this movie. By passing his weapon off to Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), he unknowingly gave her the perfect weapon to defeat Starro the Conqueror with. It also helped her escape her captors. In the long run, Javelin was actually very useful to the team.

His death also provided a perfect moment for some classic Harley comedy, in which she slaps his dead face in an attempt to get him to finish his final sentence. If we’re using death for levity, this was a textbook case in how to do it.

6. Captain Boomerang

Captain Boomerang was the only other returning member of the Suicide Squad from David Ayer’s take on the crew, so seeing him go was particularly rough. He and Harley had a special bond — close enough that he even got a quick shoutout in “Birds of Prey” — and he was pretty funny just on his own.

His death was a double whammy; first he was impaled by shards of a tree shredded by the helicopter Mongal destroyed, and then he was truly destroyed in the fire of that wreckage. Weasel’s apparent death was the cruelest, but Boomerang’s was a close second. RIP Captain. You’re one of the few who will be genuinely missed

5. The Thinker

There’s just something about seeing a man destroyed by his own creation that always pulls at just the right emotions. In the case of this film, it was seeing Starro painfully destroy Peter Capaldi’s The Thinker immediately after being freed from containment.

The Thinker was a great villain for the brief time we had him, but his death was one of the first in the film that actually came with some emotional resonance. Starro’s motivations were totally clear, and completely understandable. He had been taken from his natural environment from strangers, brought to an unfamiliar, hostile, new environment, and experimented on. What were they expecting, an extraterrestrial lapdog?

With that massive eye, he knew exactly who his main captor was. It’s kind of hard to miss that mad scientists with metal literally popping out of his head, who’s openly bragging about being in control of Starro. And, like the giant freaking starfish that he is, Starro wasn’t subtle in his methods. The Thinker’s death was just the right balance of blood and storytelling.

4. Presidente General Silvio Luna

No one could blame you for being surprised to see Presidente General Silvio Luna on here, considering he wasn’t a member of the Suicide Squad, nor was he ever truly the big bad of the film (at least, not one that felt real). But his death was memorable, and deserves its moment of recognition.

Really, Luna’s death is a huge moment for Harley. After agreeing to marry him and subsequently having sex with him, she shoots him point blank after learning that he plans to use Starro to kill not only his critics, but his critics’ children as well. Since this is post-“Birds of Prey” Harley Quinn, she’s got a bit of a soft spot for kids now (though where exactly Cassandra Cain is during “The Suicide Squad” is anyone’s guess. It’s probably a good thing she wasn’t here for this one).

As Harley explains to Luna as he bleeds out on the floor in front of her, she promised that after her last boyfriend –you know the one — she’d be on the lookout for red flags in men she was interested in, and if she spotted any, she’d kill them. And, well, killing kids is a big red flag.

A fantabulously emancipated Harley Quinn may be rough for Luna, but she sure is fun to watch.

3. Polka Dot Man

David Dastmalchian’s Polka Dot Man was the most unexpectedly charming of the group, and he made it further in the film than many fans likely expected, given the randomness of him being there to begin with.

It was Starro that inevitably took him out, literally crushing Polka Dot Man after he used his dots to actually inflict some damage on the monstrous alien. Those dots, which caused him so much pain every day, were a side effect of a virus his own mother injected him with, in the hopes of making him and his siblings superheroes. So, whenever Polka Dot Man went into battle, he imagined his mother instead of his actual adversary.

And in his final moments, he got his wish; he used his dots to take out what he saw as a giant version of his mother. “I’m a superhero!” he yelled happily, just moments before his death. It was an unexpectedly poignant moment, and devastating but beautiful way to wrap up his story.

Plus, he was the only one that truly cared about Milton. Polka Dot Man was a real one.

2. Starro

Whenever you find yourself mourning the villain’s death, you the villain was done right. Starro the Conqueror was absolutely terrifying, and yet his death was downright heartbreaking.

Though it looked like it was going to be Harley that brought down the giant alien, it was actually the rats controlled by Ratcatcher 2 that delivered the killshots — er, kill bites? Following Harley into Starro’s massive eye, the rodents bit at every piece of nerve they could find, filling the eye with blood and eventually killing Starro.

As he fell, he used one of his possessed humans to relay his final words: “I was happy floating, staring at the stars.”

It’s an absolute gut punch of a line that really summed up the whole theme of the movie. Every member of the Suicide Squad, dead and alive, were put into this situation because the U.S. made an obnoxiously poor decision, got involved where it shouldn’t and then tried to cover it up. They were made into pawns, just like Starro was made into a villain, simply because of national hubris.

A strong case could be made that Starro’s death was actually the best of the film but…

1. Colonel Rick Flag

Then there’s Colonel Rick Flag. Joel Kinnaman reprised his role from David Ayer’s “Suicide Squad” to perfection, if not better. Though Flag doesn’t have June (Cara Delevigne) this time around, he still has that humanity in him — and without it being tied to just one person, we really got to see him evolve as a character.

Here, he was much more open to joking and bantering with his team. He gave Bloodsport (Idris Elba) a hard time because they were old soldier buddies. He indulged Harley’s oddities, reminding The Thinker that though he wouldn’t actually be killed if he coughed without covering his mouth, as Harley suggested, that didn’t mean he had an open invitation to do so.

And because the mission wasn’t rooted in protecting his one true love, Flag was far more ready to deviate from his mandate in order to protect the greater good. He wanted the press to know exactly why Starro was on the loose, and how the alien even came to be. He fought with everything he had to serve his people, not just his country.

Unfortunately, Peacemaker (John Cena) operates on a far more twisted form of logic. He wants peace at all costs, and he doesn’t care who he has to kill to make that happen. And in his eyes, that meant stabbing Flag directly in the chest with a piece of broken tile.

Once again, it’s brutal, but it’s earned in every way. Flag is a character viewers have spent two movies with now; we know this guy. And really, this is the only way he could’ve gone out of this world.

Related stories from TheWrap:

How 'The Suicide Squad' Ties Into the Rest of the DCEU

You Can Definitely See Weasel's Penis in 'The Suicide Squad'

'The Suicide Squad' Scores $4.1 Million at Thursday Box Office

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 02:19

Behind ‘Grown-ish’s’ Black Lives Matter Storyline, Inspired by Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd
SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “A Boy is a Gun,” the fifth episode of “Grown-ish.” Since its 2018 debut, Freeform’s “Grown-ish” has paid special attention to social issues presented through the lens of today’s college students. With the fifth and sixth episode of its fourth season, the Yara Shahidi starrer […]
Variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 02:00

SAG-AFTRA Calls Disney’s Handling of Scarlett Johansson Lawsuit ‘Gender-Shaming and Bullying’

SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris says Disney has been “resorting to tired tactics of gender-shaming and bullying” in how the studio handled Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit against it.

“Disney should be ashamed of themselves for resorting to tired tactics of gender-shaming and bullying,” she said in a statement“Actors must be compensated for their work according to their contracts. Scarlett Johansson is shining a white-hot spotlight on the improper shifts in compensation that companies are attempting to slip by talent as distribution models change. Nobody in any field of work should fall victim to surprise reductions in expected compensation. It is unreasonable and unjust. Disney and other content companies are doing very well and can certainly live up to their obligations to compensate the performers whose art and artistry are responsible for the corporation’s profits.”

She added: “Additionally, we are deeply concerned by the gendered tone of Disney’s criticism of Ms. Johansson. Women are not ‘callous’ when they stand up and fight for fair pay – they are leaders and champions for economic justice. Women have been victimized by pay inequity for decades, and they have been further victimized by comments like those in Disney’s press statements. These sorts of attacks have no place in our society and SAG-AFTRA will continue to defend our members from all forms of bias.”

Johansson filed a lawsuit late last month alleging breach of contract in the lawsuit in which she’s suing Disney over the company’s decision to release “Black Widow” on Disney+ at the same time as the film’s theatrical release.

In response, Disney said the lawsuit had “no merit whatsoever” and that she already received $20 million in compensation.

“There is no merit whatsoever to this filing. The lawsuit is especially sad and distressing in its callous disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Disney has fully complied with Ms. Johansson’s contract and furthermore, the release of ‘Black Widow’ on Disney+ with Premier Access has significantly enhanced her ability to earn additional compensation on top of the $20M she has received to date,” a Walt Disney Company spokesperson said.

The statement was not well-received by several female equity-focused organizations. Time’s Up, ReFrame and Women and Film released a joint statement, calling Disney’s statement a “gendered character attack.”

Then, on Friday, longtime Disney attorney Daniel Petrocelli said in a statement to Variety that her lawsuit is a “highly orchestrated PR campaign to achieve an outcome that is not obtainable in the lawsuit.”

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:58

Dixie D’Amelio Insists Her Family Doesn’t Want to Be the Next Kardashians
Dixie D’Amelio says her social media famous family is not aspiring to be the Kardashians 2.0. “Some people may want to say we’re trying to be like them, but that’s not it at all.” she says. Even so, the D’Amelios will take the plunge into the world of reality television next month with the premiere […]
variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:20

Herbert Schlosser, NBC Executive Who Oversaw ‘Laugh-In’ and ‘SNL,’ Dies at 95
Herbert Schlosser, the NBC executive who championed the groundbreaking sketch show “Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In” and oversaw the launch of “Saturday Night Live,” died Friday in Manhattan. He was 95. “We are deeply saddened by the passing of Herb Schlosser,” NBC said in a statement. “His ingenuity, creativity and integrity as president and CEO of […]
variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:20

‘Game of Thrones’ Star Hannah Waddingham on Waterboarding Scene and Mental Health Fallout: ‘I Would Do It Again’ (Video)

The worst day of “Game of Thrones” actress Hannah Waddingham’s life, she told TheWrap on Friday, was the day she was waterboarded for many hours as the captive of Cersei Lannister. That said, she “would 100% do it again in a heartbeat.”

Waddingham, nominated for an Emmy for her role on “Ted Lasso,” was a guest on this week’s episode of “TheWrap-Up” podcast, where host Sharon Waxman asked about the grueling scene and how it affected her mental health.

More and more industry professionals are opening up about prioritizing their mental health. From Simone Biles withdrawing from several Olympic events to focus on her mental wellbeing to Kit Harington speaking up just last week about how “Game of Thrones” took a mental toll on him, conversations about balancing performance and mental health are being had.

“I found it quite claustrophobic, where I have never had any claustrophobia before, and I went and had a bit of hypnotherapy afterwards,” Waddingham said. “I said in an interview that it was the worst day of my life, other than childbirth. Yes, it was. In that moment, that experience was really unpleasant.”

Nevertheless, Waddingham said that she trusted that the producers wouldn’t push her to do something that would have a long-lasting, negative effect on her emotional health. In fact, the actress said she would “definitely” get waterboarded again, if a scene called for it.

“I would 100% do it again in a heartbeat,” Waddingham said. “Because there are some moments — and I’ve actually discussed it with a couple of the guys from ‘Thrones’ since — where you need to give of yourself, even if it makes you uncomfortable.”

While Hannah Waddingham said she was “lucky” to not be pushed too far in her roles, she emphasized the importance of actors’ mental health being nurtured and the need for both actors to speak up in order to make their boundaries known, and for producers to listen and act accordingly.

“I think you have to speak up,” Waddingham said. “If you don’t feel comfortable with something, you speak up. And [producers] will always listen. And if they don’t listen, that’s when it becomes a problem.”

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:20

‘Ultimate Slip N’ Slide’ Scrapped by NBC Following Diarrhea Outbreak

NBC has canceled “Ultimate Slip N’ Slide” after an on-set giardia outbreak shuttered productions for months. Earlier this month, TheWrap exclusively reported that “Ultimate Slip N’ Slide” would not air this summer. Now it simply won’t air — ever.

NBC will air “American Ninja Warrior” at 8 p.m. on Mondays beginning next week. “The Wall” episodes will air at 10.

Bobby Moynihan and Ron Funches were hosts of the NBC and Universal Television Alternative Studio show, an $18 million series inspired by the classic Wham-O! backyard toy. The competition was originally set to premiere Sunday, Aug. 8 at 10:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. PT, after the Tokyo Olympics Closing Ceremony, but was pulled from the schedule on July 2 and no new premiere date or guidance about when the show would debut was given at that time.

Production on “Ultimate Slip ‘N Slide” was shut down June 2, seven weeks into shooting — with another five days to go, including the crucial final competition that had promised a huge cash-prize winner — at the show’s $6 million set in Simi Valley, California, after 65% of the show’s staff were infected by a giardia outbreak that caused multiple cases of “awful explosive diarrhea.” Read exclusive details from TheWrap’s initial report here.

At least one person on set tested positive for giardia, an intestinal infection caused by a parasite, while multiple individuals reported symptoms, according to Universal Television Alternative Studios, which is producing the show for NBC. Tests on the location’s well, pond, the slide pool, water truck and the restroom sinks all came back negative, but additional testing has revealed giardia in the dirt somewhere on the property, which is frequently used location for multiple productions. This made it impossible to resume shooting the final episodes as the production kicks up dust that could again contaminate the water.

NBC and the studio had been scouting for a new, safe new location where the giant Slip ‘n Slide could be moved so production on the end of Season 1 — and potential future seasons — could take place. During that time, Universal Television Alternative Studio was also working on two possible models for finishing the season in the edit bay without the ability to shoot the final episodes, but those options were ultimately passed on.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:20

Julia Roberts and her husband Danny Moder held hands while enjoying a walk in NYC.
extratv.warnerbros.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:19

Win It! A Younique Lash Kit

“Extra” is giving away Younique Moodstruck Magnetic Lash kits to 10 lucky friends!

The Younique Moodstruck Magnetic Lashes are magnetic, vegan, and customizable for any eye shape.

Paired with the Younique Moodstruck Magnetic Eye Liner, the lashes can last up to 10 hours of use.

For more, visit YouniqueProducts.com!

extratv.warnerbros.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:19

‘Ultimate Slip ‘N’ Slide’ Not Moving Forward at NBC After Giardia Outbreak
“Ultimate Slip ‘N’ Slide” is officially being flushed from the NBC schedule. The reality competition series paused production back in June following an outbreak of giardia onset. It will not resume production and therefore will not debut on Aug. 8 after the Tokyo Olympics finale as originally planed. Instead, ” “Family Game Fight” will air […]
variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:19

Herbert Schlosser, NBC Exec Who Came Up With Idea for ‘SNL,’ Dies at 95

Herbert Schlosser, one of the most influential television executives responsible for much of the late-night TV space, has died. He was 95.

Schlosser’s death was initially confirmed by his wife to the New York Times.

“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Herb Schlosser. His ingenuity, creativity and integrity as president and CEO of NBC during the ’70s made an indelible mark on the network and its legacy, including bringing Johnny Carson to ‘The Tonight Show’ and helping to shape what ultimately became ‘Saturday Night Live,’” said NBC in a statement.

Schlosser, a former head of NBC, came up an idea in the mid 1970s that would become “Saturday Night Live,” which is heading into its 47th season this fall. In 1974, “Tonight Show” Johnny Carson wanted NBC to stop using repeats of his show on weekends, a request that was granted since he was their most important star at the time.

In early 1975, Schlosser wrote a memo for a potential replacement program that would be hosted by a different celebrity each week that would also “seek to develop new television personalities,” that would air Saturday’s at 11:30 p.m.

“Saturday Night is an ideal time to launch a show like this,” Mr. Schlosser wrote (via The New York Times). “Those who now take the Saturday/Sunday ‘Tonight Show’ repeats should welcome this, and I would imagine we would get much greater clearance with a new show.”

Schlosser, who first came to NBC in its business affairs department, also led the talks to bring in Carson to replace Jack Paar as the “Tonight Show” host, where he would enjoy a 30-year tenure as the most celebrated host in the genre.

He was named executive vice president of the network in 1972; promoted to president a year later; and named president of the National Broadcasting Company, the network’s corporate parent, in 1974 and chief executive in 1977.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:17

Journalist Who Filmed ’92 LA Riots and OJ Simpson Chase on Capturing History: ‘When You’re Working, It’s Not as Real’ (Video)

Helicopter coverage is a staple of today’s local news, but back in the ’80s and ’90s, Marika Gerrard and her then-husband Zoey (formerly Bob) Tur pioneered the newsgathering technique.

The documentary “Whirlybird,” out in theaters and on demand Friday, chronicles the family business they created together: the Los Angeles News Service.

For nearly two decades, Gerrard shot thousands of videos, ranging from raging wildfires to enraged celebrities — including Madonna and Sean Penn on their wedding day. But two of her videos — the dragging and beating of truck driver Reginald Denny after the 1992 Rodney King verdict, and the 1994 O.J. Simpson freeway chase — forever changed America … and her.

TheWrap’s Lawrence Yee caught with Gerrard and Matt Yoka, the director of “Whirlybird,” to talk about the impact of these two events on Gerrard. “Whirlybird” largely centers on how the Denny footage negatively affected Tur, who was battling gender dysphoria-driven depression at the time (Tur came out as transgender and the couple divorced). But now here’s Gerrard’s take.

“Well, you are a lot more fearful when you’re in the news business just in general, because you see so many horrible things happening,” she explained. “Because you see so much you do get kind of inured to it.”

“It doesn’t really register sometimes,” she continued. “When I was filming Reginald Denny, I was filming it in black and white in the viewfinder. I was looking at it as a news story. I need to get it in focus, I need to make sure I’m getting the right shot. And [I thought] ‘Oh my God, this is like the bookend to the Rodney King beating. This is an amazing piece of video.’ And then I got back and I put it on the screen. And I watched it. And I was taken aback.”

“I could not watch that video for a long time afterwards,” Gerrard admitted of the footage where Denny was pulled out from his truck at an intersection and violently beaten until he was badly bloodied, including struck in the head with a cinderblock. “It was real when it was in color. When it’s in black and white and you’re working. It’s not as real.”

Seemingly just as unreal was capturing football and Hollywood star O.J. Simpson leading police on a lengthy car chase just two years later. Over 80 million viewers tuned into watch Gerrard’s footage of the long, low-speed pursuit that culminated with Simpson’s arrest.

“Whirlybird” captures the conversation between Tur and Gerrard about Simpson’s whereabouts. Gerrard believed that he was suicidal and was going to drive to the mountains. Tur disagreed, saying he would go to his slain wife Nicole’s grave. Ends up Tur’s instincts were right, and they were first on the scene flying above the now infamous white Bronco.

When asked about her role in the most infamous car chase in history, Gerrard said Simpson’s case was unique.

“I never felt bad about publicizing, OJ in a sense, because he was a public figure, and he brought it on everything on himself. But when you look at someone like Reginald Denny, he was just a guy, a truck driver driving from the innocent intersection. He didn’t ask for this. They certainly didn’t ask to be an icon forever. And, and you don’t really think about that until later on you. So thinking, wow, I mean, that person’s like, that person’s the worst moment of their life is now the defining moment of their life.”

While “Whirlybird” doesn’t dive into the cultural/racial implications of either event (read the review here), it does give an inside look into how one family was affected.

Check out more of TheWrap’s interview with Marika Gerrard and “Whirlybird” director Matt Yoka above, and the trailer for the documentary below.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:11

Ryan Reynolds: Why Free Guy is more than a 'video game movie'
The Canadian actor's latest film sees him play a different kind of "naïve and innocent" character.
news.bbc.co.uk | 07-Aug-2021 01:05

Newsletter / 2021-08-08
Newsletter / 2021-08-08
extratv.warnerbros.com | 07-Aug-2021 01:02

How ‘The Suicide Squad’ Ties Into the Rest of the DCEU

(This article contains spoilers for “The Suicide Squad” from director James Gunn)

While the Marvel Cinematic Universe may be the model for franchise moviemaking, Warner Bros and DC Films have never truly tried to replicate it in full. Sure, we’ve got a shared universe over here with the DC Extended Universe movie franchise. But even at its busiest time back in 2016 and 2017 you really just had Zack Snyder’s main series alongside some spinoffs that had no bearing on the overall plot. And now, as of “The Suicide Squad,” we really just have several distinct franchises that occasionally reference the fact that superhero stuff is going on elsewhere.

So there’s no big picture, and each movie is kinda just doing its own thing, and there aren’t a huge number of

“The Suicide Squad,” out now in theaters and on HBO Max, is a sequel to the Will Smith movie from 2016. While nobody involved in the new flick seem to want to call it a sequel — probably because the first one was a horrible movie — it obviously is since it brought back a bunch of characters that were introduced in that film. Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie). Rick Flag (Joel Kinnamen). Amanda Waller (Viola Davis). Captain Boomerang (Jai Courtney).

Harley, of course, was in another DC Comics movie between then and now — “Birds of Prey.” “The Suicide Squad” doesn’t bring in any of the other characters from that film, but it does reference her breakup with the Joker a couple times, and she has a little exchange with Captain Boomerang about how she got back in prison (“road rage in a bank”).

When Harley makes her first appearance in the new flick, she’s wearing a pretty sick jacket that reads “Live Fast, Die Clown” on the back. Later, after her little romantic interlude with the dictator of Corto Maltese, she watches him bleed to death while monologuing at him about how being with the Joker taught her to take action when a guy she’s dating gives off red flags.

That’s also a thematic nod to “Birds of Prey,” because that movie was all about Harley learning to live for herself and not for somebody else. Like, sure, she’s happy to hook up with some hot psycho guy, but now she’s got her own standards.

That’s actually all there is in regards to references to other DCEU movies, though there are various nods to the fact that superheroes are out there. Such as when Waller says that Bloodsport (Idris Elba) put Superman in the ICU with a kryptonite bullet. That’s obviously not something we’ve seen in another movie. Though that incident does spark some questions about the circumstances, it’s a line that’s just there to establish both Bloodsport’s credibility and to remind you that the shared universe is still there.

While we’re talking about this, we should go over the fact that HBO Max has a show about John Cena’s character, Peacemaker, on the way for early next year. While he looked pretty dead after Bloodsport shot him in the neck, “The Suicide Squad” included a post-credits scene that revealed he was in a coma. So we’ll be seeing more of him very soon.

We don’t know anything about “Peacemaker” just yet, other than that James Gunn is directing five of the eight episodes. But Cena is a big star, so I bet he’ll still be around for some other DCEU spot further down the line. Maybe a third “Suicide Squad” movie, or maybe something else entirely.

But with the DCEU being so amorphous at the moment, there’s not much point in guessing what’s coming down the line. Things have been smoothing out a bit since “Aquaman,” but Warner Bros doesn’t seem to be in too much of a rush to get things going at full tilt. Which may be the smartest approach.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:58

Newsletter / 2021-08-07
Newsletter / 2021-08-07
extratv.warnerbros.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:57

WME Signs Toronto Raptors President Masai Ujiri in All Areas
WME Sports has signed Masai Ujiri, vice chairman and and president of the Toronto Raptors Basketball Club and alternate NBA governor, in all areas. The agency will focus on expanding Ujiri’s business across content, brand partnerships, books, speaking and social impact. WME most recently served as an advisor during his contract negotiations and will support […]
variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:53

Julianne Hough’s Ex Brooks Laich Moves On – Who’s His New GF?

Less than a year after Julianne Hough filed for divorce, her ex Brooks Laich has a new love!

Earlier this week, Laich gushed about CrossFit star Katrín Tanja Davíðsdóttir, who just completed the 2021 NOBULL CrossFit Games. He wrote on Instagram, “This weekend I was able to witness @katrintanja compete live for the first time, and I am left more inspired and amazed than I could have ever imagined.”

Brooks added, “So proud of the way she competed this weekend, which was the expression of the hard work she put in to be here. Rest assured the next time she takes the field, I will be there watching - bearing witness to one of the greatest competitors I have ever met!”

In response to Brooks’ post, Katrín wrote, “THE MOST incredible feeling to get to step out on that comp floor & I know you know that feeling aaaaaaaaaall too well. Thankful for you & the best support always always always.”

During a livestream, Brooks and Katrín were spotted kissing after she completed her event.

Following the competition, the pair flew to Hawaii for some R&R. Brooks posted videos of himself at the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai, including one where he said, “Good morning, my friends. Waking up in this beautiful place today. About to go for a little breakfast on the beach. One of my favorite things to eat when I travel? Cinnamon buns. I’m on the lookout for the best cinnamon bun and I’ll find it right here.”

It is unknown when Brooks and Katrín started dating and how they met.

Julianne and Brooks announced their separation over a year ago. At the time, they told People magazine, “We have lovingly and carefully taken the time we have needed to arrive at our decision to separate. We share an abundance of love and respect for one another and will continue to lead with our hearts from that place. We kindly request your compassion and respect for our privacy moving forward.”

extratv.warnerbros.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:45

Canadian Soccer Star Quinn Becomes First Openly Trans, Nonbinary Olympic Medalist

The women’s soccer final at the Tokyo Olympics was historic on multiple fronts. For one, the match marked Canada’s first gold medal in the sport. And for another, midfielder Quinn became the first openly trans, nonbinary Olympian to medal in the history of the Games. 

The 25-year-old Torontonian cemented their name in the history books when Canada triumphed over Sweden on Friday via penalty kicks ? yet another first for the soccer finals.

In an interview with CBC Sports earlier this week, Quinn expressed their pride in getting to be a role model for young people. 

“Athletics is the most exciting part of my life and it brings me the most joy,” Quinn, who goes by one name, said. “If I can allow kids to play the sports they love, that’s my legacy and that’s what I’m here for.” 

Quinn played for Canada in the Rio Games in 2016, where the team won bronze. But they did not come out publicly with their identities until last September, despite having been out in their personal life for years.

They opened up about the mixed feelings of being the “first” on Instagram last month.

“First openly trans Olympian to compete. I don’t know how to feel,” Quinn wrote. “I feel proud seeing ‘Quinn’ up on the lineup and on my accreditation. I feel sad knowing there were Olympians before me unable to live their truth because of the world.”

They continued, “I feel optimistic for change. Change in the legislature. Changes in rules, structures, and mindsets. Mostly, I feel aware of the realities. Trans girls being banned from sports. Trans women facing discrimination and bias while trying to pursue their olympic dreams. The fight isn’t close to over … and I’ll celebrate when we’re all here.”

Although Quinn made history as the first medalist, they’re not the only openly transgender or nonbinary athlete at the Tokyo Games. Alongside Quinn are Laurel Hubbard, a weightlifter from New Zealand; Chelsea Wolfe from the U.S. women’s BMX Freestyle team; and American skateboarder Alana Smith.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:28

Amazon Cancels ‘Panic’ After One Season

Amazon Prime Video has canceled the young adult drama “Panic,” TheWrap has confirmed.

The series, which premiered its 10-episode first season on the streaming service back in May, came from writer and creator Lauren Oliver, who adapted the series from her own bestselling novel.

The “Hunger Games”-esque drama was set a small Texas town where every summer the graduating seniors compete in a series of challenges — winner take all — which they believe is their one and only chance to escape their circumstances and make their lives better.

Cast on the series included Olivia Welc, Mike Faist, Jessica Sula, Camron Jones, Ray Nicholson and Enrique Murciano.

In addition to Oliver, executive producers on the drama included Joe Roth, Jeff Kirschenbaum and Adam Schroeder. Lynley Bird and Alyssa Altman served as co-executive producers on the Amazon Studios series.

Deadline first reported on the cancellation.

thewrap.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:28

Las Vegas Is the Epicenter of Entertainment
Concerts are back in Las Vegas! Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, Luke Bryan, Donny Osmond, and Gwen Stefani are just some of the big names performing in Las Vegas in the coming months.
extratv.warnerbros.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:11

Britney Spears’ Father Jamie Makes Shocking New Claims in Latest Court Filing

While Britney Spears’ lawyer Mathew Rosengart is doing everything in his power to oust Jamie Spears as her conservator, her dad has just filed new court documents!

In the docs obtained by Fox News, Jamie claimed that her conservator Jodi Montgomery expressed concerns over Britney’s mental health. It stated, “Mr. Spears received a call from Ms. Montgomery on July 9, 2021, in which she sounded very distraught, expressed concern about Ms. Spears' recent behavior and her refusal to listen to or even see her doctors.”

“Ms. Montgomery explained that my daughter was not timely or properly taking her medications, was not listening to the recommendations of her medical team, and refused to even see some of her doctors,” the doc stated. “Ms. Montgomery said she was very worried about the direction my daughter was heading in and directly asked for my help to address these issues."

According to Jamie, Jodi brought up a “potential” 5150 psychiatric hold for Britney during the call. His declaration said, “On July 13, 2021, I received an email from Ms. Montgomery in which she acknowledged our call but back-tracked on most of the details she shared with me and discounted the need for a 5150.”

Jamie emphasized that his “sole motivation has been his unconditional love for his daughter and a fierce desire to protect her from those trying to take advantage of her."

Jamie also alleged that Britney’s medical treatment is “indeed serious.” He also claimed that admitting Britney to a facility in 2019 was Montgomery and her former attorney Sam Ingham III’s idea.

In response to Jamie’s filing, Montgomery’s attorney Lauriann Wright told People magazine, “Ms. Montgomery is saddened that her telephone call to Mr. Spears, made out of genuine concern for Ms. Spears, and intended to re-establish a working relationship with Mr. Spears towards Ms. Spears' mental health and well-being, is now being misrepresented and manipulated to gain some sort of tactical advantage in the pending proceedings to remove him as Conservator. Ms. Montgomery implores Mr. Spears to stop the attacks – it does no good; it only does harm."

“We all need to focus on one thing, and one thing only – the health, well-being and best interests of Britney Spears,” Wright emphasized.

As for Rosengart’s effort to remove Spears’ role as conservator, his lawyers argued that there are “no grounds whatsoever to suspend” him.

In Rosengart’s latest court filing, he claimed that Britney “continues to suffer ongoing harm each day that Mr. Spears remains in place as the Conservator of the Estate — emotionally, psychologically, and financially."

“Mr. Spears has also enriched himself at the expense of his daughter,” the doc states. “Most recently, and by way of one illustration only, Mr. Spears objected to his daughter’s wish in late July to take a short vacation, disapproving of the expenditure that would have come from his daughter’s own, hard-earned money.”

Britney was eventually allowed to fly to Maui for a vacation with her boyfriend Sam Asghari.

Jamie’s attorneys hit back at Rosengart, saying that his request included “unsubstantiated, vague accusations and a false statement about Mr. Spears opposing a trip to Hawaii."

Jamie has been the conservator for Britney’s estate since 2008.

extratv.warnerbros.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:09

‘Panic’ Canceled After One Season at Amazon
“Panic” has been canceled after one season at Amazon, Variety has confirmed. The YA drama debuted on Amazon back in May. The one-hour series was based on the novel of the same name by Lauren Oliver. It takes place in a small Texas town, where every summer the graduating seniors compete in a series of challenges, […]
variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:07

Disney Lawyer Daniel Petrocelli Calls ‘Black Widow’ Lawsuit an ‘Orchestrated PR Campaign’
The temperature in the legal battle between Disney and Scarlett Johansson over her compensation for “Black Widow” has not cooled in the week since Johansson’s lawsuit was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court. Longtime Disney attorney Daniel Petrocelli told Variety that the demands in Johansson’s litigation are far out of the bounds of the actor’s […]
variety.com | 07-Aug-2021 00:04

Foo Fighters Troll Westboro Baptist Church Protesters With a Drive-By Bee Gees Cover
Instead of fighting hate with more hate, Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters prefer to retaliate with disco. On Thursday, as the Westboro Baptist Church picketed outside the band’s show in Bonner Springs, Kansas, the Foo Fighters — dressed in all white as their ’70s alter-egos, the Dee Gees — drove by in a flatbed […]
variety.com | 06-Aug-2021 23:53

Ashley Benson, Shiloh Fernandez Starring in Noir Thriller ‘Private Property’ (EXCLUSIVE)
Ashley Benson, Shiloh Fernandez, Logan Miller, Frank Whaley and Jay Pharoah are starring in “Private Property,” a remake of the 1960 noir film of the same title. The movie recently wrapped production in Los Angeles and was written, produced, and directed by Chadd Harbold. The original film, written and directed by “Outer Limits” creator Leslie […]
variety.com | 06-Aug-2021 23:29

‘Reservation Dogs’ Cast and Crew Celebrate Show’s Indigenous Representation at Los Angeles Premiere
“Reservation Dogs,” FX’s new comedy about Indigenous teens in rural Oklahoma co-created by Taika Waititi and Sterlin Harjo, is breaking ground for Native American representation in Hollywood. With a team almost entirely made up of Native creatives, what’s the show’s most innovative storytelling element? According to them, it’s the simple fact that “Reservation Dogs” has […]
variety.com | 06-Aug-2021 23:04

You Can Definitely See Weasel’s Penis in ‘The Suicide Squad’

This article contains not-safe-for-work spoilers for “The Suicide Squad,” which is out now in theaters and on HBO Max.

It’s tough to call a character in “The Suicide Squad” a scene-stealer, because they’re all scene-stealers. But some of them steal scenes more than others — like Weasel. This cross-eyed critter is only in the movie for about five or six minutes, but he makes a big impression.

And also his penis is hanging out.

It’s tough to spot on first viewing because he’s very furry *down there*, and also because there aren’t a ton of full-body shots of Weasel to work with. But you can see it in two shots when he’s first introduced — when he’s getting out of the armored prisoner transport, and when Team 1 does their hero shot of everybody in a line walking toward the camera. I’ve got screengrabs for you that I brightened so it’s easier to see.

And just for the sake of driving the point home, here’s a gif.

While the presence of Weasel’s penis isn’t really any sort of big deal, I do appreciate the commitment to just doing the thing that James Gunn seems to have had with “The Suicide Squad.” It’s so crude, and so violent, and also kinda depressing — but also hilarious and full of amusing weirdness. This particular little detail, which few people seem to have noticed so far, is the sort of thing that’s gonna keep me coming back. I bet there’s plenty more strange hidden gags like this all over this movie.

But, I should say, Weasel is certainly more than just his penis. He’s a child murderer who stole our hearts with just a few moments of screen time. I probably don’t need to make the case for more Weasel in the DC Movieverse, but I’m gonna do it anyway. And I promise it’s not just because I think we need more funny naked animal people in movies. Though that is certainly one of my reasons.

The Case for More Weasel in the DC Movieverse

In the opening segment of “The Suicide Squad,” Amanda Waller’s Task Force X really lives up to its nickname. And eclectic team of baddies is sent to invade a South American island nation — and most of them are killed pretty quickly. The first to go (apparently) was Weasel, who appeared to drown as soon as he dropped into the water near the beach.

It was an absolutely hilarious moment, but it turned out to be bittersweet — Savant (Michael Rooker) dragged Weasel onto land and then pronounced him dead. No more Weasel, and we’re only eight minutes into the movie.

But he was only temporarily dead, it turns out, as at the end of “The Suicide Squad” we learn that he wasn’t dead at all. We don’t know how long he was unconscious on the beach, or what he did once he got up and wandered off into the woods. But we know he’s still alive, and that’s what matters. We know that he could come back in another movie.

If this article were a tweet, I would say that I would die for my giant trash weasel son. But since this isn’t a tweet I’ll go into a little further detail about just how much I love my giant trash weasel son.

The hook with Weasel is that he’s missing all the signs we would normally associate with intelligence. In our unfortunately brief time with him, he never demonstrates an ability to communicate with anyone, nor does he even really acknowledge any of the other characters — he barely ever even looks at anybody. There’s clearly something going on in that noggin of his, since he uses a seatbelt and manages to behave himself.

So in practice, what we get every time Weasel is on screen is a funny animal video. He’s just hanging out, looking weird, eyes and mouth twitching while he makes cranky cat sounds. It is a great testament to the work of Sean Gunn, who is the man under that CGI costume, that he was able to make this mangy cat man into possibly the most adorable part of “The Suicide Squad.”

It’s also a testament to the quality of “The Suicide Squad in general that Rick Flag (Joel Kinnamen) can offhandedly point out that Weasel killed 27 children and we just think, “Oh, that sounds so cute!”

There’s probably a limit on just how much you could use a character like Weasel before the bit gets old — though it would certainly depend on how he’s used. But that’s OK, because nobody needs a Weasel movie. But we do need more Weasel.

The prime candidate right now is John Cena’s “Peacemaker” series heading to HBO Max next year. Peacemaker and Weasel are the only two members of the Suicide Squad who both survived and haven’t been freed from Amanda Waller’s control. And also James Gunn is directing five episode of the show — where James Gunn goes, Sean Gunn usually follows. And he’s been key. Sean Gunn plays Rocket Raccoon on set in the MCU before Bradley Cooper provides the voice performance.

So fingers crossed.

thewrap.com | 06-Aug-2021 22:40

Tokyo Olympics Week 2 Highs and Lows in TV Ratings | Chart

Another week of Olympics competition is in the books, and the total audience deliveries continue to prove that Tokyo 2021 is no Rio 2016. Of course, with the time zone differences, lack of in-person fans and generally downward ratings trends across all of television, no one really expected they would be.

But there were some highlights amid the TV-audience lowlights. Tuesday proved to be most-watched night of the week, with 17.4 million overall primetime audience members tuning in across NBC, its sister cable channels and digital properties — including Peacock. That was the evening Simone Biles won bronze in the individual balance beam event.

Though it edged out the July 23 opening ceremony by roughly 100,000 viewers, Biles’ return to competition wasn’t the most-watched night of these games. As a matter of fact, like Biles, it also ranked third. The first Sunday of competition averaged 20 million viewers and the first Thursday landed 19.5 million. Those currently occupy the gold and silver podiums, respectively.

Biles did play a key role in the No. 1 night. NBC aired the women’s gymnastics team qualifying round during that Sunday primetime broadcast — the only other time she actually competed in Tokyo. Additionally, American swimmer Caeleb Dressel took gold in the men’s 4x100m freestyle relay that evening and Katie Ledecky won silver in the women’s 400m freestyle.

During the first Thursday of competition, American Suni Lee scored gold in the women’s gymnastics all-around and more medals went to U.S. swimmers.

See each night’s performance in total audience delivery (TAD) below.

To date, Tokyo is averaging 16.5 million viewers in TAD per night. At this point in Rio, the nightly average was 28.1 million.

That means Tokyo 2020 is currently down 41% from Rio 2016.

In addition to Biles’ performance, Tuesday’s primetime coverage also included the women’s 400 meter hurdles final featuring Sydney McLaughlin, Dalilah Muhammad and a new world record. But the eyeballs were mainly there for Biles, who competed for the first time since she withdrew from the gymnastics women’s team all-around final a week earlier due to a mental block gymnasts call “the twisties.”

Thus far, the least-watched evening of the 2020 Olympics in 2021 was the night after Biles’ performance, when the women’s beach volleyball semifinal aired alongside track & field events. That night averaged 300,000 fewer viewers than the first Saturday of competition.

We’re down to the final few nights of the Tokyo Olympics. Closing ceremonies are on Sunday.

thewrap.com | 06-Aug-2021 22:31

Kathy Griffin Released from Hospital After Lung Cancer Surgery

Days after undergoing lung cancer surgery, Kathy Griffin, 60, has been discharged from the hospital.

On Friday, Kathy posted a video of herself at home with her dogs, who were beyond excited to see her. She tweeted, “Home from the hospital and greeted by my board certified medical PAWfessional recovery pack.”

Earlier this week, Kathy gave an update after having half of her left lung removed. She admitted on Instagram, “To be honest, this cancer surgery was a little more than I had anticipated. Tonight will be my first night without any narcotic pain killers. Hello Tylenol, my new best friend!"

Citing a suicide attempt last year, she continued, “The last time I was in a hospital was in June 2020 when I tried to take my own life and overdosed on prescription pills."

Kathy has also battled a pill addiction in the past, telling fans, "With over a year clean and drug free, I now know I can do this and anything I want without those devil pills. Y'know what? I fear drugs and addiction more than I fear cancer. So, I think I'll be ok."

The 60-year-old revealed her cancer diagnosis on Monday, tweeting, “I’ve got to tell you guys something. I have cancer. I’m about to go into surgery to have half of my left lung removed. Yes, I have lung cancer even though I’ve never smoked!”

After the news broke, “Extra’s” Senior Executive Producer Lisa Gregorisch-Dempsey learned more about the disease from Dr. Robert J. McKenna M.D., Professor of Surgery at Saint John’s Cancer Institute.

Dr. McKenna is not treating Kathy, but he is a pioneer in the field.

Lisa asked what factors might contribute to someone getting lung cancer. Watch the video!

extratv.warnerbros.com | 06-Aug-2021 22:22

Newsletter / 2021-08-06
Newsletter / 2021-08-06
extratv.warnerbros.com | 06-Aug-2021 22:20

‘TheWrap-Up’ Podcast: ‘Ted Lasso’ Star Hannah Waddingham on How the Emmy-Nominated Role ‘Plopped in Her Lap’

This week on “TheWrap-Up,” hosts Sharon Waxman and Daniel Goldblatt discussed the $900 million sale of Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine, Mike Richards possibly getting the “Jeopardy!” hosting gig and the lasting fallout of Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit against Disney.

Then, “Ted Lasso” star Hannah Waddingham joined the podcast and talked about how she drew upon her own experiences to play Rebecca Welton and how she dealt with the mental toll that the waterboarding scenes in “Game of Thrones” took on her.

SUBSCRIBE: Apple | Spotify | Omny Studio | Stitcher | Google Podcasts

“TheWrap-Up” won the Best Hard News Feature award from the L.A. Press Club in 2021 for the segment “The Complexities Black Journalists Face This Week Covering Protests.” It is hosted each week by founder and editor-in-chief Sharon Waxman and assistant managing editor Daniel Goldblatt. The pair dive into the biggest headlines of the week in the world of movies, television, streaming and tech. Each episode features two deeper dive segments featuring our knowledgable and talented team of Wrap Pro reporters, offering up their in-depth, expert analysis you won’t hear anywhere else.

thewrap.com | 06-Aug-2021 22:05

TV Star Beau Mirchoff Engaged to GF Jenny Meinen — See Her Ring!

“Good Trouble” actor Beau Mirchoff, 32, is ready to take the leap with his psychologist girlfriend Jenny Meinen!

On Friday, Beau announced their engagement on Instagram. Along with posting photos from his proposal at the Eiffel Tower in Paris, he wrote, “The love of my life said oui!”

Jenny also shared photos on her Instagram, writing, “Yes to a lifetime of love with you ????.”

Beau and Jenny have been together for a year.

In March, Beau gushed, "One year with this beautiful human! We’ve lived in a trailer, we’ve weathered a pandemic, we bought a horse, she watched me fall off the horse, and now we live together. In a house. Not a trailer. Love you to pieces baby girl ??."

It is unclear how they met, but his first photo with her dates back to May 2020.

Beau plays Jamie Hunter, who is the ex of Callie Adams Foster, on “Good Trouble,” currently in its third season.

extratv.warnerbros.com | 06-Aug-2021 21:54

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