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Black Cat spin-off film? Sony expanding 'Spider-Man' universe with female lead
Credit: Marvel Comics

Black Cat spin-off film? Sony expanding 'Spider-Man' universe with female lead

We wouldn't discount the possibility of a 'Spider-Girl' movie, though

Sony's got a tough road ahead of them.

One of the most depressing but predictable things to happen this weekend was the backlash that has already begun regarding Sony's idea to possibly make a woman-driven "Ghostbusters." While I'm used to seeing knee-jerk reactionary responses from people who show up in comments sections, I was taken aback by Mike Fleming's response on Deadline. If he meant it as a joke, it's tone deaf, and if he's serious, then he's more of a caveman than I expected.

At this point, I feel like I've turned a corner in terms of my own feelings about casting, especially when it comes to these big fanboy properties. I am fully onboard at this point for disruption of the status quo. Female Thor? Great. Black Spider-Man? Bring it on. An all-female Ghostbusters team? Suit up, ladies, and let's see what you've got. If it makes white dudes angry because they feel like they're having to share their toys, then I'm all in.

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Off the Carpet: Will it be Brad vs. Angelina this Oscar season?
Credit: Universal/Sony

Off the Carpet: Will it be Brad vs. Angelina this Oscar season?

'Fury' vs. 'Unbroken' could make for an enticing narrative later this year

Last week "Boyhood" producer John Sloss asked me why I thought his film could win the Best Picture Oscar this year. Of course, it's only just August, so all you have is the same thing everyone else has: instincts, observation of the lay of the land, etc. And I'm nowhere near calling it for the little engine that could. Rather, I see in it the kind of special quality that tends to light the fuse of many an Oscar winner. But there's plenty that could stand in its way between now and Feb. 22, 2015.

Then again, looking ahead at this year's potential Oscar slate, I'm not really sensing a banner year. Many of these films could end up absolute masterworks; we just don't know yet. But in the awards fray, lately I've just been thinking, "I see 'Unbroken' and then I see everything else." Angelina Jolie's upcoming POW saga about the life of the late Louis Zamperini seems to have all the bells and whistles that you'd expect of a power Oscar player (and of countless potential players that have hit a brick wall, it should be said), so like most of you, probably, I'm expecting it to clean up. But everyone is getting their narratives in order and Sony sure got a nice smooch from The New York Times over the weekend, setting David Ayer's "Fury" up as an unflinching look at the dark underbelly of heroism in World War II.

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<p>Christoph Waltz and Amy Adams in &#39;Big Eyes&#39;</p>

Christoph Waltz and Amy Adams in 'Big Eyes'

Credit: The Weinstein Company

Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz in images from Tim Burton's 'Big Eyes'

The Weinstein Company film is set for release on Christmas Day

The start of production on "Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass" isn't the only Tim Burton news happening. Additionally, newly released are the first two images (below) from the Burton-directed "Big Eyes."

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Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift drops hints about her new album...we think

Will we hear new music during the MTV VMA performance?

Is 18 about to replace 13 as Taylor Swift’s favorite number? Today, Swift posted a video on Instagram with the words, “So, here’s your first clue…”

The video shows a finger, perhaps Swift’s, pushing the number 18 in an elevator, patiently at first and then more adamantly.

Swift has been working on a new album for the last year so it’s likely a reference to her newest set. She has been remarkably reliable in terms of dropping new albums every two years in the fourth quarter. Her self-titled debut came out in October 2006, “Fearless” in November 2008; “Speak Now” in October 2010, and “Red” in October 2012.

Chances are we'll hear new music  live by Swift when she performs at MTV's Video Music Awards on Aug. 24. E News! reports that her performance will be "explosive," and that she is appearing alone, not as part of a collaboration.

And for sure she'll be singing new material when she appears at the iHeartRadio Music Festival, which takes place in Las Vegas Sept. 19-20. iHeartRadio DJ Kristin Cruz promised as much when she posted a photo with Swift and tweeted a few weeks ago that the singer would debut "new songs" at the event.

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Ed Sheeran

Watch a dancer get all bendy in Ed Sheeran's new video for 'Don't'

If you like great dancing, you'll love Sheeran's latest clip

After Sia’s “Chandelier,” Ed Sheeran’s new video for “Don’t,” may deliver the best dancing in a video this year.

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<p>Uzo Aduba of &quot;Orange Is The New Black&quot;</p>

Uzo Aduba of "Orange Is The New Black"

Credit: Netflix

Interview: 'Orange Is The New Black' star Uzo Aduba on Emmy hopes, Season 2 drama and more

How is the Suzanne/Crazy Eyes balance shifting?

Life is a whirlwind for the stars of Netflix's "Orange Is The New Black."

When they aren't journeying to Los Angeles to accept awards for the prison dramedy's first season which premiered in July 2013, they're still doing publicity for the second season which premiered in June 2014 and then, of course, there's the third "Orange Is The New Black" season, now in production.

That meant there was a lot of ground to cover when I talked to Uzo Aduba last week, starting with thanking her for dropping by the TCA Awards ceremony in July (she joked on Twitter that she, Taylor Schilling, Kate Mulgrew and Danielle Brooks were furloughed).

We talked about the Emmy process, which sees her going up against Laverne Cox and Natasha Lyonne for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series, including the selection of "Lesbian Request Denied" as her submission episode.

And we discussed Aduba's journey in the second "Orange" season, including her attempts to balance the line between Suzanne and Crazy Eyes.

The Emmy voting deadline is Wednesday, August 6, if such things matter to you. The Creative Arts Awards, the show which includes the Guest Actor categories, will be held on August 16. The second season of "Orange Is The New Black" is available in its entirety on Netflix. And Season 3 will premiere next spring/summer at some point.

Check out the full interview...

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Report: Vince Vaughn in talks for 'True Detective' Season 2

Report: Vince Vaughn in talks for “True Detective” Season 2
According to TV Line, Vaughn is in “preliminary” negotiations to play one of three leads in the 2nd season of the HBO series. Previous reports from last month had Colin Farrell and Taylor Kitsch in negotiations for “True Detective."

Natalie Zea to star in ABC’s “Members Only”
The “Justified” and “Dirty Sexy Money” alum is set to return to ABC in an upstairs/downstairs Connecticut country club drama from RJ Cutler.

“Warehouse 13’s” Eddie McClintock joins “Backstrom”
He’ll play a police lieutenant who grew up with Rainn Wilson’s Det. Backstrom character, and stole from him.

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Lollapalooza 2014 in photos: Eminem, Lorde, Iggy Azalea, Outkast and more
Credit: AP Photo

Lollapalooza 2014 in photos: Eminem, Lorde, Iggy Azalea, Outkast and more

The rain didn't keep a weekend of music away in Chicago

Lollapalooza returned to Chicago this past weekend, and brought with it headliners like Kings Of Leon, Eminem, Lorde, Iggy Azalea, Outkast and more.

The three-day event ran over Aug. 1-3 in Grant Park, with a few hours spent in the "rain" portion of the "rain or shine" policy.

Still, Nas, Grouplove, Cage The Elephant, Bleacher, Jhene Aiko, Lykke Li, John Butler Trio, White Denim, The Bombay Motorcycle Club, Glen Hansard, Jungle, The Head and the Heart and The Avett Brothers were caught doing their thing on camera.

Check out photos from the intrepid shooters at Associated Press below. Which are your favorite pics?

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'Downton Abbey’s' Hugh Bonneville to visit 'Galavant'

“Downton Abbey’s” Hugh Bonneville to visit “Galavant”
He’s set to guest-star as Peter the Pillager.

Cedric the Entertainer’s “The Soul Man” renewed
The TV Land spinoff from “Hot in Cleveland” will return next year for a 12-episode 4th season.

Reminder: “Conan” tonight hosts the “Orange is the New Black” cast
Tonight's guests include Taylor Schilling, Laverne Cox, Uzo Aduba, Kate Mulgrew, Natasha Lyonne and Jason Biggs, marking the 4th time Conan has hosted a TV show cast.

David Spade to make fake IDs for “The Goldbergs”
He’ll guest as a photo store employee.

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Comedy Central announces premiere dates for 'South Park,' 'Key & Peele,' 'Tosh.0,' 'Adam Devine's House Party'

Comedy Central announces premiere dates for “South Park,” “Key & Peele,” “Tosh.0," "Adam Devine's House Party"
“South Park’s” 18th season kicks off Sept. 24 followed by “Key & Peele," “Tosh” returns Aug. 26 and "Adam Devine’s House Party” returns Sept. 9.

“Sharknado 2” to hit theaters for 1 night only
Following the success of the original “Sharknado” in theaters last year, “Sharknado 2: The Second One” will be screened on Aug. 21.

Spike TV and NFL vet Ray Lewis team for “Coaching Bad”
The hourlong reality show will feature nine coaches from different sports receiving instruction from the former Baltimore Ravens linebacker and an anger management specialist.

“Idol” finalist from last season: "I have Rocky Mountain Spotted Tick Fever”
It took months for Dexter Roberts to learn about the ailment that forced him off of this year’s tour.

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<p>Giants&#39; QB Eli Manning</p>

Giants' QB Eli Manning

Credit: AP

TV Ratings: Giants-Bills NFL preseason opener leads NBC on Sunday

The 2014 Hall of Fame Game was down a hair from last year's action

Fast National ratings for August 3, 2014.

The NFL Hall of Fame Game, the pro football preseason opener, helped NBC dominated Sunday night among young viewers and also hold off "Big Brother" and CBS for an overall win.

The Giants-Bills tilt took a small bite out of CBS's numbers (impacted very slightly by golf overrun), but mostly left things steady. 

All numbers are subject to change, but this year's Hall of Fame Game appears to be down a comfortable margin from last year's preseason opener, which featured the Cowboys.

On to the numbers...

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<p>The Awesomes</p>

The Awesomes

Credit: Hulu

Seth Meyers, Taran Killam & 'The Awesomes' team preview season 2

How a bunch of 'SNL' people got together for an animated superhero comedy

The TV presence at Comic-Con has expanded to the point where shows that only vaguely fit the Con's mission (say, "Sons of Anarchy") have become popular fixtures. Hulu's "The Awesomes," which returned for a second season today (you can see the first two new episodes here, along with all 10 episodes from season 1), though, fits several overlapping core Comic-Con constituencies. It's a show about a team of super-heroes — albeit misfit super heroes whose great powers are undercut by stupidity, or deep-seated mommy issues, or various physical and emotional ailments that make the team's most powerful member, Seth Meyers' Prock (who can stop time) a guy who rarely does anything useful with his gifts — made by people (including Meyers, his "Late Night" producer Mike Shoemaker, and writer Dan Mintz, whom you might recognize as the voice of Tina Belcher on "Bob's Burgers") with clear love and knowledge of many eras of comic book-dom. (One of the supers is Gadget Girl, a de-aged '40s heroine played by Paula Pell, who'd fitjust fine into old Justice Society stories with only the smallest of tweaks.) And the cast includes a bunch of "SNL" and "SNL"-adjacent actors, including Meyers, Taran Killam (as the dim-witted speedster Frantic), Keenan Thompson (as the fashion-conscious, mother-obsessed Impresario) and, this season, Amy Poehler (as a barracuda of a lawyer who may be a love interest for Prock) and Will Forte (as the accountant son of season 1's chief villain). And while it mainly exists as a comedy, it's not really a satire; The Awesomes have actual adventures (even if they bungle their way into solutions), there are big character and story arcs to each season, etc.

At Comic-Con, I had a few minutes to speak with Meyers, Shoemaker, Killam, Mintz and Meyers' brother Josh (who plays the insufferable, aptly-named hero Perfectman) about the show, about which members of the cast and crew are actually into comics — and what it's like for the very nerdy Killam to be married to SHIELD Agent Maria Hill (aka Cobie Smulders) — and more.

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