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"The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills"

 "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills"

Credit: Bravo

Recap: 'The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills' - "Malibu Beach Party from Hell'

All hell breaks loose when Taylor faces off with Camille's best friend

Welcome to tonight's very special "Taylor loses her damn mind" episode! But we have to build up to the full-bore craziness that breaks out at Brandi's ill-conceived beach party ("I thought I'd get all the girls together! In a small space! With lots of alcohol! It'll be FUN!). I mean, you can't just dive into this kind of mental breakdown without some build up. And "RHoBH" is nothing if not good at the slow burn. Still, strap on your straight jackets; it's going to be a bumpy ride to Crazy Town.

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<p>Michael Fassbender as Brandon in &quot;Shame.&quot; </p>

Michael Fassbender as Brandon in "Shame."

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures

There is no ‘Shame’ in NC-17 according to this weekend’s box office

Fox continues to focus on Fassbender’s performance and the the film's rating

Poor punnery aside, some may say that this weekend’s box office returns indicate that “Shame” has overcome the stigma of its NC-17 rating, but it feels far more likely that Fox Searchlight made the right decision by rolling into the wave rather than fighting it. The studio embraced the rating, using it as a distinguisher, something to pull the film out from the pack. Journalists have utilized it as a talking point in interviews and editorial pieces about the film and the structure of the ratings system. I raised a question about the validity of the NC-17 rating in a piece last month and spoke with actress Carey Mulligan about her take on the decision during our interview.

Despite indications that the rating may damage "Shame," NC-17 in all likelihood has worked as a spotlight on a film that otherwise may have needed to fight for the attention of a viewership inundated with the end-of-the-year rush of weightier, adult-themed films.

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<p>Gary Oldman as Lee Harvey&nbsp;Oswald in Oliver Stone's &quot;JFK&quot;</p>

Gary Oldman as Lee Harvey Oswald in Oliver Stone's "JFK"

Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

Gary Oldman on investigating, and becoming, Lee Harvey Oswald in Oliver Stone's 'JFK'

The actor enjoyed a unique researching experience on the film, this year celebrating its 20th anniversary

Fifteen minutes really isn't enough time with a guy like Gary Oldman. I'm sorry, not for me. Only a douche bag would complain about ANY time with Gary Oldman, of course. I'm aware of the navel-gazing. But someone that good, that many times out, and in that many different ways just kind of demands a laundry list of queries per film.

I didn't get to do that. Fine, okay. The task at hand is discussing Oldman's nuanced, awards-flirting performance in Tomas Alfredson's "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy," but I had to give myself some excuse to venture out. So I tried to tie it in.

The thing about Oldman -- which I'll get in to more in depth in my full interview later in the week -- is how much he has stood out despite being a part of so many esteemed ensembles. The roll call of actors he's worked with is massive, but just consider the casts of "State of Grace," "JFK," "True Romance," "Basquiat," "The Contender," "Hannibal," select entries in the "Harry Potter" franchise and Christopher Nolan's successful Batman triolgy. And yet he's always more of a cog in the wheel, whereas in "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy," he's fronting such an ensemble.

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<p>Robin (Cobie Smulders)&nbsp;enjoys some un-maternal pursuits on &quot;How I&nbsp;Met Your Mother.&quot;</p>

Robin (Cobie Smulders) enjoys some un-maternal pursuits on "How I Met Your Mother."

Credit: CBS

'How I Met Your Mother': How she met your father?

A great Cobie Smulders showcase is undercut by unncessary narrative trickery

A review of tonight's "How I Met Your Mother" coming up just as soon as I earn the right to put the Vikings helmet on Baby Jesus...

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<p>If he did end up playing Khan, I would hope Benicio would wear that hat.</p>

If he did end up playing Khan, I would hope Benicio would wear that hat.

Credit: AP Photo/Javier Galeano

Benicio Del Toro is out, but reports still have Khan in 'Star Trek 2'

How many 'Star Trek' stories can we run in a row?

Ahhh, the fine art of rumormongering.

Over the weekend, we got involved in a bit of a friendly back and forth with Latino Review over "Star Trek 2," or whatever the film's finally going to be called.  They published the news that Benicio Del Toro was playing Khan Noonien Singh in the new sequel that is set to start shooting just after the start of the year, and we contacted JJ Abrams directly to ask him to comment.  "Not true," he said.

Now it seems that Del Toro dropped out of negotiations to star in the film last Wednesday, and according to Vulture, Abrams is now looking to cast someone else as Khan.  They claim they have a very highly-placed source and that, like Latino Review, they're hearing Khan is indeed the bad guy.

Technically, if negotiations broke down on Wednesday, then when I asked Abrams if Del Toro was playing the part on Friday, his "not true" is accurate no matter what the part is.  After all, he didn't send a giant response detailing who is or isn't the bad guy he's using in the film, so he could very well have been playing by the rules, answering the question he was asked while volunteering nothing else.

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<p>Ke$ha</p>

Ke$ha

Listen: Ke$ha only wants to dance with you on new single

Do you want to hear her sing?

Ke$ha is back and she wants to prove that she’s more than the girl who will vomit in your closet from drinking too much Jack and leave you to clean it up...as if that weren't enough.

On “Only Wanna Dance With You,” which has leaked all over the internet today, K-Dollar Sign-Ha sings the first portion of the bouncy, ‘80s sounding track for a good two minutes until she reverts to form and goes into a spoken bridge about “kicking it all night/hard-core making it until it gets light.” Listen to it here  (courtesy of Perez Hilton).

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Jesse James

 Jesse James

Credit: Discovery Channel

Watch: Jesse James on 'American Chopper: The Build-Off'

James, Paul Teutul Sr. and Paul Teutul Jr. go head-to-head-to-head

Remember when Jesse James was just a guy who built cool stuff and not a philandering husband/boyfriend with issues? Flash back to the good old days tonight when James goes head-to-head-to-head with Paul Teutul Senior and Paul Teutul Junior on 'American Chopper: The Build-Off' on the Discovery Channel (9:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.). See clips from the show below -- and, in the second clip, watch as Senior proclaims James a "genius" and predicts him beating his own son in the three-way competition. Ouch.

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<p>Kaya Scodelario in Andrea Arnold's &quot;Wuthering Heights,&quot; for which DP Robbie Ryan was honored at the Camerimage festival.</p>

Kaya Scodelario in Andrea Arnold's "Wuthering Heights," for which DP Robbie Ryan was honored at the Camerimage festival.

Credit: Oscilloscope Pictures

Camerimage honors DPs of 'In Darkness,' 'A Separation,' 'Wuthering Heights'

'Tree of Life' and 'Tinker, Tailor' lose out at Polish cinematography festival

The Camerimage festival, to my knowledge the only international film festival dedicated specifically to honoring the art of cinematography, rarely gets much attention on the awards beat, but it's always an interesting event to follow. Based in Poland, the festival annually programs a selection of the year's most remarkably photographed films, ranging from mainstream awards fare to exotic obscurities, with an international jury judging the DP's work in each case. 

Naturally, awards follow. "The Piano" won the festival's inaugural Golden Frog award in 1993, while subsequent winners include "Elizabeth," "Road to Perdition," "City of God," "Pan's Labyrinth," "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" and "Slumdog Millionaire."

But if all those were high-profile lensing showcases than went on to receive Oscar recognition in the same category, the awards can just as often go in unexpected directions.

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<p>&quot;State of Play&quot;</p>
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"State of Play"

Credit: BBC America

Listen: Firewall & Iceberg Podcast No. 105

Dan and Alan review 'State of Play,' 'Bag of Bones' and 'Appropriate Adult' and answer mail

The

Happy Monday, Boys & Girls!
 
As you may have noticed, over the weekend, Alan became paranoid that we didn't have enough content for this week's podcast and aggressively solicited questions.
 
That's why, in addition to the miniseries "State of Play," "Appropriate Adult" and "Bag of Bones," this podcast answers five or six pieces of Listener Mail, only a small percentage of what we received. We'll try to get to more next week.
 
Today's breakdown:
"State of Play" (02:15 - 09:30)
"Appropriate Adult" (09:30 - 16:55)
"Bag of Bones" (17:35 - 27:40)
Listener Mail: The "Dexter" Twist (28:15 - 37:55)
Listener Mail: Old Cast, New Show (38:00 - 43:30)
Listener Mail: Episode Titles (43:35 - 47:45)
Listener Mail: "Saturday Night Live" (47:50 - 56:30)
Listener Mail: "Boardwalk" history (56:45 - 01:01:20)

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.] 

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<p>Madonna</p>

Madonna

Credit: AP Photo

5 Steps to a perfect Madonna Superbowl Halftime show

Plus, listen to her new song, 'Masterpiece'

As had been long rumored, Madonna is indeed performing at Super Bowl XLVI's half-time show Feb. 5 in Indianapolis. Both the NFL and superstar confirmed the Material Girl’s appearance Sunday night.

What do we know? We know that she is collaborating with a team from Cirque du Soleil, so we can expect some wildly inventive and weird acrobatics to keep everyone entertained. She’s also partnering with Moment Factory, a company that produces multimedia events in strange spaces, whether it be outdoors or between buildings.

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Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, episode 105: 'State of Play,' 'Appropriate Adult,' 'Bag of Bones' & more

Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, episode 105: 'State of Play,' 'Appropriate Adult,' 'Bag of Bones' & more

Dan and Alan also answer listener mail about 'Dexter,' 'The Walking Dead' and episode titles

The

We were on the verge of devoting most of this week's Firewall & Iceberg Podcast to my irrational love of unheralded Knicks rookie Iman Shumpert (who has yet to play a game in the NBA, of course) when we put the call out on Twitter for extra listener mail questions, and you guys delivered. Combined with your terrific questions and some stronger material to review this week, it's a pretty eclectic podcast. So thanks!

The line-up: 

"State of Play" (02:15 - 09:30)
"Appropriate Adult" (09:30 - 16:55)
"Bag of Bones" (17:35 - 27:40)
Listener Mail: The "Dexter" Twist (28:15 - 37:55)
Listener Mail: Old Cast, New Show (38:00 - 43:30)
Listener Mail: Episode Titles (43:35 - 47:45)
Listener Mail: "Saturday Night Live" (47:50 - 56:30)
Listener Mail: "Boardwalk" history (56:45 - 01:01:20)
 
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, download the MP3 file or stream it on Dan's blog.
 
And as always, feel free to e-mail us at sepinwall@hitfix.com and/or dan@hitfix.com if you have questions you want answered on the show. Please put the word "podcast" in your subject line to make it easy to track them down amid the hundreds of random press releases we get every day.
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Kelly Ripa

 Kelly Ripa

Credit: AP Photo

Does Kelly Ripa need a permanent co-host on "Live! with Kelly"?

Stars like Jerry Seinfeld have stepped in for Regis, but should any of them stick around?

So, the long goodbye is over. Regis has been gone for two weeks and Kelly Ripa has settled into a (sort of) solo gig on the renamed "Live! with Kelly." I say sort of because Ripa has been joined by stand-in co-hosts comedian Jerry Seinfeld, Jerry O'Connell, Neil Patrick Harris and, most recently, "Dancing with the Stars" pro Derek Hough -- and there are likely many more to come, as there's been no deadline for when a permanent co-host will be announced. While each of these co-hosts has been successful to varying degrees, what's been notable is how smoothly Ripa has stepped into the Regis chair.

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