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"The Glee Project"

"The Glee Project"

Credit: Oxygen

'The Glee Project' recap: 'Romanticality'

It's all about faking it effectively this week

The theme for the week is romanticality, which isn't really a word at all, as my automatic spell check keeps reminding me by changing it to romantically, but hey, this show ain't about proper English, it's about singing and dancing! So, let's get to exactly that!

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<p>Colin Farrell in Les Wiseman's remake of &quot;Total Recall.&quot;</p>

Colin Farrell in Les Wiseman's remake of "Total Recall."

Credit: Columbia Pictures

The Lists: Top 10 remakes that got it right

With a new take on 'Total Recall' out Friday, we round up cinema's best do-overs

For those of us still clinging to the illusion of youth – I’m 29, but humor me – this has been a mighty distressing summer. The reboot of “Spider-Man,” for example, seemed utterly superfluous to those of us who remember 2002 like it was yesterday; to the new generation of teenagers ogling Andrew Garfield’s more haunted-looking Peter Parker, however, Tobey Maguire’s first outing in the Spidey-suit is a kindergarten memory, if it’s a memory at all.

More alarming still is a new take on a film whose posters I can still remember adorning the cinema marquees of my childhood, but is now deemed so venerable as to be past the territory of sequels or spinoffs. Yes, “Total Recall” – which stood only 22 years ago at the cutting edge of FX blockbuster terrain – is now old enough to suffer the indignity of a remake, and “Underworld” director Len Wiseman is the man filling Paul Verhoeven’s shoes.

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<p>'Yes, Emma, I'm just as sad as you are that the entire 'Potter' series is over, but can you imagine how much of that $500 per Blu-ray box we each get?'</p>

'Yes, Emma, I'm just as sad as you are that the entire 'Potter' series is over, but can you imagine how much of that $500 per Blu-ray box we each get?'

Credit: Warner Bros. Home Video

'Harry Potter Wizard's Collection' details promise 31 discs of magic for Rowling fans

Just in time for Christmas, the ultimate Potter collection arrives on Blu-ray and DVD

Harry Potter is still a big deal.  Just so we're clear.

I'm amazed at the sheer weight of a set like the one announced by Warner Bros Home Video today.  I'd imagine this thing has be heavy enough to crush one of my kids, just based on the description of it.  31 discs.  I think that's the largest movie set I've ever seen.

It's fitting, though.  The world that JK Rowling created still seems to have its hooks in people completely, and a collection like this feels like a fitting way to wrap it all up for people who loved these movies.  I'm probably okay just owning the eight films, but I'm not a maniac for Potter the way some people are, and for them, this has got to be an exciting announcement.

We knew Warner was planning this, but we didn't realize what the five hours of new bonus materials would entail.  The full details were finally released today, and if you're on the fence about committing nearly $500 to a collector's set, check out the full list that Warner Bros. sent over.  And since, according to Rowling's writing, today would be Harry Potter's 32nd birthday, it seems like a perfect time for Potter fans to celebrate.

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Watch: Carrie Underwood's hair is perfect in 'Blown Away' video
Credit: Arista Nashville

Watch: Carrie Underwood's hair is perfect in 'Blown Away' video

Will she follow the yellow brick road?

There’s a storm brewing and it’s making a bee-line right for Carrie Underwood’s house in the video for “Blown Away,” the dramatic title cut from her current album.

In the atmospheric clip, the pressure between Underwood and her alcoholic daddy builds as the barometric pressure outside drops. There’s a twister coming and pops is too snockered to get himself down into the storm cellar, where there’s a nice mattress and Underwood is just fine until it all blows over.  Also, note that her hair blows beautifully in the wind, never obscuring her beauty or getting caught on her lip gloss, like what happens to mere mortals.

[More after the jump...]

This is one hangover that her father won’t be able to sleep off as the storm blows away all the of the bad memories and past that have seeped into those Oklahoma walls.

When Underwood emerges, she’s greeted by nothing less than a rainbow and a yellow brick road as she, hopefully, goes on to find her pot of gold....and if not that, her Tin Man, Cowardly Lion, and Scarecrow.

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<p>She looks like this, she wrote a great script, and she nails the performance. I'm not sure if I love or hate Rashida Jones at this point.</p>

She looks like this, she wrote a great script, and she nails the performance. I'm not sure if I love or hate Rashida Jones at this point.

Credit: HitFix

Watch: Rashida Jones on Lily Allen, friends and lovers, and 'Celeste & Jesse Forever'

The co-screenwriter gives us a glimpse at why the movie is so smart

Rashida Jones was already annoyingly cool to begin with.  The daughter of Peggy Lipton and Quincy Jones?  Awesome.  Gorgeous?  Definitely.  Tremendously funny on shows like "The Office" and "Parks and Recreation"?  Yep.  So now she's also written a movie that turns out to be smart and funny and wise about relationships?  Good lord, Rashida, is there anything you can't do?

When we sat down during a recent press day for "Celeste and Jesse Forever," we covered a fair amount of ground in just a few minutes.  We talked about the very real widow that seems to be represented in the way her film, co-written with Will McCormack and directed by Lee Toland Krieger, looks at the difficulties that come from trying to stay friends with someone after you've failed at romantic intimacy, but which also looks at just how hard it is to maintain any friendship after a certain age or even make new friends.

She's also very aware of the way people react to her past work.  I talked to her about my wife's ongoing reaction to her role on "The Office" several seasons ago, and she seems like she's heard that reaction before.

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<p>Drake, Lady Gaga and Rihanna</p>

Drake, Lady Gaga and Rihanna

Credit: AP Photos

2012 MTV VMAs nominations: 5 questions we have

Where is Lady Gaga? Lil Wayne nominated for what? Will Chris Brown, Drake and Rihanna all show up?

The 2012 MTV VMAs are arriving on Sept. 6, and five weeks out, the short list is in. As previously reported, Rihanna and Drake culled the most nominations with five a piece. Katy Perry earned four. Lady Gaga...

1) Well, Lady Gaga earned zero nods. She had "Marry the Night" and "You and I." The former is a killer dance track with a clip directed by Mother Monster herself, but -- granted -- it was eight full minutes of non-music footage that likely served as her reel for her first acting role in "Machete Kills." And the latter was a not-very-good-song with a video that was... interesting?

Regardless, the MTV VMAs have kind of been Gaga's thing: she donned a meat dress, she spent her camera face-time in 2010 kicking off her "Born This Way" album promo, trotted out Joe Calderone last year and has mega-plans to announce details on her new set some time in September.

Gaga has the superstar name that organizers wouldn't need to announce as a performer until way later into August but... would Gaga agree to play the show that snubbed her? Will she even hit the red carpet?

2) For best new artist, there are two boy bands, two chart-toppers and a newly developed, certifiable Def Jam R&B superstar who recently, popularly and publicly came out of the closet. One Direction and The Wanted may cancel each other out, fun.'s "We Are Young" have been out of rotation for about six months... is this a contest between Summer Jam winner Carly Rae Jepsen and Frank Ocean?

3) You know what's adorable? The majority of categories only have five nominees each, but it's Video With A Message that got a good-natured six. Why? Because why/how the hell else would they fit Lil Wayne's well-intentioned but poorly developed and badly acted "How to Love" in there?

You gotta hand it to MTV who wants to hand a statue for "messaging" to a man who also goes by the name Pussy Monster. Now that he's in the race next to B-listers like K'Naan, Rise Against and Gym Class Heroes, plus lesser-known tunes from Kelly Clarkson and Demi Lovato, does anybody stand a chance against Weezy?

4) Video of the Year: M.I.A.'s "Bad Girls." Really? I mean, I personally love that thing, but no "Otis?" Or something funny like "Big Bad Wolf?" Or a new artist or truly underdog artist like Childish Gambino or Of Monsters And Men? This is now a race of four, and everybody already knows "Take Care" wasn't Drake or Rihanna's song.

5)  Drake, Chris Brown and Rihanna: all up for a significant number and caliber of awards. Breezy seems to show up to any awards event he's invited to perform at, and still has face to save and singles to sell. Drake and Rihanna both have the same number of nominations, which sounds like they, too, would show up. Glass bottles, as a rule, are not allowed into L.A.'s Staple Center.

My question is: when can Adele put out another album so we can just give all the air time to her?

Here are the nominees for the 2012 MTV Video Music Awards:

Video of the Year
Katy Perry, "Wide Awake"
Gotye, "Somebody That I Used To Know"
Rihanna, "We Found Love"
Drake feat. Rihanna, "Take Care"
M.I.A., "Bad Girls"

Best New Artist

Fun. feat. Janelle Monae, "We Are Young"
Carly Rae Jepsen, "Call Me Maybe"
Frank Ocean, "Swim Good"
One Direction, "What Makes You Beautiful"
The Wanted, "Glad You Came"

Best Hip-Hop Video

Childish Gambino, "Heartbeat"
Drake feat. Lil Wayne, "HYFR"
Kanye West feat. Pusha T, Big Sean & 2 Chainz, "Mercy"
Watch the Throne, "Paris"
Nicki Minaj feat. 2 Chainz, "Beez in the Trap"

Best Male Video

Justin Bieber, "Boyfriend"
Frank Ocean, "Swim Good"
Drake feat. Rihanna, "Take Care"
Chris Brown, "Turn Up the Music"
Usher, "Climax"

Best Female Video

Rihanna, "We Found Love"
Katy Perry, "Part of Me"
Beyoncé, "Love on Top"
Nicki Minaj, "Starships"
Selena Gomez & The Scene, "Love You Like a Love Song"

Best Pop Video

One Direction, "What Makes You Beautiful"
Fun. feat. Janelle Monae, "We Are Young"
Rihanna, "We Found Love"
Justin Bieber, "Boyfriend"
Maroon 5 feat. Wiz Khalifa, "Payphone"

Best Rock Video

Coldplay, "Paradise"
The Black Keys, "Lonely Boy"
Linkin Park, "BURN IT DOWN"
Jack White, "Sixteen Saltines"
Imagine Dragons, "It's Time"

Best Electronic Dance Music Video

Duck Sauce, "Big Bad Wolf"
Calvin Harris, "Feel So Close"
Skrillex, "First of the Year (Equinox)"
Martin Solveig, "The Night Out"
Avicii, "Le7els"

Best Video With a Message
Demi Lovato, "Skyscraper"
Rise Against, "Ballad of Hollis Brown"
Kelly Clarkson, "Dark Side"
Gym Class Heroes, "The Fighter"
K'Naan feat. Nelly Furtado, "Is Anybody Out There?"
Lil Wayne, "How to Love"

Best Art Direction

Katy Perry, "Wide Awake"
Drake feat. Rihanna, "Take Care"
Lana Del Rey, "Born to Die"
Regina Spektor, "All the Rowboats"
Of Monsters & Men, "Little Talks"

Best Choreography

Chris Brown, "Turn Up the Music"
Rihanna, "Where Have You Been"
Beyoncé, "Countdown"
Avicii, "Le7els"
Jennifer Lopez f/Pitbull, "Dance Again"

Best Cinematography
M.I.A., "Bad Girls"
Adele, "Someone Like You"
Drake feat. Rihanna, "Take Care"
Coldplay feat. Rihanna, "Princess of China"
Lana Del Rey, "Born to Die"

Best Direction
M.I.A., "Bad Girls"
Duck Sauce, "Big Bad Wolf"
Coldplay feat. Rihanna, "Princess of China"
Frank Ocean, "Swim Good"
Watch the Throne, "Otis"

Best Editing
Beyoncé, "Countdown"
A$AP Rocky, "Goldie"
Gotye, "Somebody That I Used to Know"
Watch the Throne, "Paris"
Kanye West feat. Pusha T, Big Sean and 2 Chainz, "Mercy"

Best Visual Effects
Katy Perry, "Wide Awake"
Rihanna, "Where Have You Been"
David Guetta feat. Nicki Minaj, "Turn Me On"
Linkin Park, "BURN IT DOWN"
Skrillex, "First of the Year (Equinox)"

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<p>&nbsp;Perry Farrell</p>

 Perry Farrell

Credit: AP Photo/Chris Pizzello

Interview: Perry Farrell takes you behind the scenes at Lollapalooza

What does it take to put on the Aug. 3-5 festival?

Perry Farrell is nothing if not ambitious. The Jane’s Addiction frontman’s mission for Lollapalooza, which he co-created in 1991, is nothing less than “trying to get the greatest musicians on the earth into Chicago” for the three-day music festival, which kicks off this Friday, Aug. 3 at Grant Park.

This year’s lineup is certainly a colorful attempt at that feat with headliners including Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Black Keys, Black Sabbath, and Jack White.

They are joined by nearly 130 other acts who span the musical spectrum. Farrell started the event as a traveling festival 21 years ago. After two brief hiatuses, it returned as a stationary festival in Chicago in 2005 and has grown into one of the premier summer music events.  Over the years, as the headliners have fallen into place, he says, “my ambition is a little different these days...What I’m trying to do is break the greatest young artists in the world. I cast that net pretty far out there.”

As Lollapalooza has  expanded to after-parties throughout Chicago, that has given Farrell greater leeway “to let people in who may have promise that aren’t great [yet] to people who have really developed their craft.”

He and his partners, booking agency William Morris Endeavor and concert presenter C3, have weekly conference calls to discuss potential performers. “I get to open up [WME’s]  portfolio and look them over, but we are absolutely not limited to them,” Farrell says, adding that the debates over whom to book for Lollapalooza “can get very heated at times and it can really spin your brain.”

As a musician, the rise in the number of multi-act festivals has been great for artists who can “can get paid good money to get in front of a good audience 10-20 times bigger than you’d normally play to,” Farrell says, but when he puts on his festival organizer hat, it’s a different story. “The other festivals are looking to outbid you, so it drives up the cost of the artist, so you have to be really careful because now you’re talking about a dozen or more groups that are operating on inflated fees,” he says. “It’s becoming a lot like pro sports.”

Finding the right talent is just one part of the equation to pulling off a successful event. Farrell worries as much about what happens off stage as on: “You want to make the accommodations for the patrons great and have their experience be great,” he says. In fact, he sees attending a festival las a vital part of growing up for kids now, a rite of passage just like getting their driver’s license. And he wants Lollapalooza to be the festival that every kid remembers as his or her first.

For the full Lollapalooza line up, go here.

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<p>The infamous 100 meter final from the 1988 Seoul Olympics.</p>

The infamous 100 meter final from the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

Toronto Film Festival docs focus on Ben Johnson, Snoop Dogg and Thirty Seconds to Mars

Plus: Sony Pictures brings 'Hotel Transylvania' north for the kiddies

The Toronto International Film Festival announced additional selections to this year's edition of the festival including a large number of documentaries and some intriguing vanguard titles.

Among the doc highlights, Daniel Gordon's "9.79*" revisits the 100 meter final from the 1988 Seoul Olympics which is notorious for Ben Johnson's anabolic steroid scandal. "Artifact" chronicles Thirty Seconds to Mars and Jared Leto's long legal battle against EMI.  "As if Were Catching a Cobra" captures the insurgent movements among Arab artists in Egypt and Syria. Ken Burns, David McMahon and Sara Burns' "The Central Park Five" comes to Toronto after screening at Cannes in May. Recent Sony Pictures Classics acquisition "The Gatekeepers" takes an in-depth look at Israel's secret service agency and screens for the firs time after its debut at Jerusalem International Film Festival. Matthew Cooke uses interviews with subjects such as 50 Cent, Eminem, David Simon and "Freeway" Rick Ross to chronicle the war on drugs in "How to Make Money Selling Drugs."  "Iceberg Slim: Portrait of a Pimp" examines the life of the cult cultural icon. Alex Gibney tackles the power of the Catholic Church in "Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God." Janet Tobias' "No Place on Earth" discovers that five Jewish families spent over a year and a half in Ukraine's caves to escape the Nazis during WWII. Snoop Dogg allegedly finds spirituality in "Reincarnated." Another look at Roman Polanski in Marina Zenovich's "Roman Polanski: Odd Man Out"  Jamie Kastner brings disco back in what the festival describes as a "hilarious new package" in "The Secret Disco Revolution." "Shepard & Dark" looks at the friendship of Sam Shepard and Johnny Dark through years of written correspondence. "Show Stopper: The Theatrical Life of Garth Drabinsky" recounts the rise and fall of the infamous Canadian entertainment mogul. Participant Media and Dan Setton looks at the continuing struggle of the Palestinian state.  "Storm Surfers 3D" follows two best friends in their quest to find the biggest and most dangerous waves in the world.

Among the intriguing Vanguard titles, Rodney Ascher's "Room 237" makes a stop on the festival circuit in Toronto as does Michel Gondry's "The We and the I" and Luis Prieto's English language remake of Nicolas Winding Refn's "Pusher."

TIFF is also continuing its family friendly selections, known as TIFF Kids.  This year's movies include the world premiere of "Hotel Transylvania," "Finding Nemo 3D," French-language animated Cannes selection "Ernest & Célestine" and the live-action "Igor & the Cranes' Journey."

The Toronto International Film Festival runs from Nov. 6-16.  Look for complete coverage from Venice, Toronto and Telluride from HitFix's editorial team.

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"Project Runway"

"Project Runway"

Credit: Lifetime

Watch: A peek at 'Project Runway''s Emmy challenge

The designers have their work cut out for them with difficult clients

If you want a taste of what's ahead on this Thursday's "Project Runway," here's a clip that promises drama a-plenty. As you may have heard, the designers get what seems like a straight-forward (and glamorous) challenge -- but soon discover it's not so obvious or easy when they learn who they'll be dressing. I expect our remaining designers will be put to a test that's actually (gasp!) somewhat relevant to their futures, as dressing up difficult people is, at least for any big name designer who dresses a celebrity, is just part of the job.

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<p>Colin Farrell, Christopher Walken, and Sam Rockwell are only three of the 'Seven Psychopaths,' but Walken's so crazy he should count twice, right?</p>

Colin Farrell, Christopher Walken, and Sam Rockwell are only three of the 'Seven Psychopaths,' but Walken's so crazy he should count twice, right?

Credit: CBS Films

Toronto announces Midnight Madness line-up including 'Seven Psychopaths'

Two 3D movies, Rob Zombie, and Barry Levinson? What a year

I was already excited for Toronto.  The Midnight Madness selection this year just pushes that excitement into a low-grade sustained mania that is going to make August seem very, very slow no matter what.

With this morning's announcement of the Midnight Madness line-up, I now have a pretty good picture of my September firmly in place.  Even the film I've already seen from the line-up has gone through a serious post-production process since the Sundance premiere, and I'm excited to see how "John Dies At The End" has come together.

It's a very diverse schedule this year, and I remain impressed with the breadth of what Colin Geddes programs each year.  He's determined to give audiences a wild ten-day ride that they can't predict, and looking at this year's slate, I'm guessing it will be another amazing experience.  In today's press release, Geddes said, "Audiences clamouring for this highly anticipated lineup can expect wild rides and crazy adventures into the most chimerical and wicked worlds imaginable.”

He went on to add, “Expect everything from outrageous horror comedies to mock-doc eco- apocalypse thrillers, featuring trans-dimensional bugs, lewd Catholic priests, meat monsters and dog-napping psychopaths that will animate the Ryerson Theatre when the clock chimes 12.”

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The Avett Brothers release 'The Carpenter' track listing and artwork

The Avett Brothers release 'The Carpenter' track listing and artwork

What have they got to say about Paul Newman?

The Avett Brothers’ new album, “The Carpenter,” has song titles sure to intrigue fans. The North Carolina group released the track listing for the Sept. 11, Rick Rubin-produced album, as well as the cover artwork. 

With songs like “Paul Newman Vs. the Demons”  and “Down With The Shine, “ it sounds like they have some more interesting stories to tell. The band has already revealed a few songs from their sixth studio album, including first single, "Live And Die," embedded below.

[More after the jump...]

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Listen: Firewall & Iceberg Podcast No. 141

Listen: Firewall & Iceberg Podcast No. 141

Dan and Alan talk more TCA Press Tour, TCA Awards 'Breaking Bad' and more


Happy Tuesday, Boys and Girls!
It's time for the Firewall & Iceberg Podcast.
This week's installment was recorded in two chunk. The Sunday chunk includes coverage of the Television Critics Association press tour days since our last podcast (including our discussion of the TCA Awards), as well as conversation about the penultimate Season One episode of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." The second chunk is all about this week's "Breaking Bad."
There's a lot to cover!
Here's the breakdown:
TCA Press Tour (00:02:05 - 00:42:15)
"Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and a little mail (00:42:15 - 00:58:50)
"Breaking Bad" (00:59:15 - 01:26:45)

As always, you can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. [Or you can always follow our RSS Feed.] 

And as always, feel free to e-mail us questions for the podcast.

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