Latest Blog Posts

<p>The American Society of Cinematographers' clubhouse in Hollywood.</p>

The American Society of Cinematographers' clubhouse in Hollywood.

ICG honors contributors to cinematography including a familiar HitFix face

Sometimes it's nice to be on the other side

The International Cinematographers Guild (ICG) held a celebratory luncheon at the ASC clubhouse today to showcase the winners of the 2013 Emerging Cinematographers Awards. Those honorees will have their work screened during a special ceremony at the DGA Theater on Sunday night. Friday, the guild took a few moments to honor four more experienced gentlemen for their contribution to the cinematic arts at the American Society of Cinematographers Clubhouse in Hollywood.

Read Full Post

'Modern Family' mulling a spinoff, possibly with Rob Riggle

"Modern Family" mulling a spinoff, possibly with Rob Riggle
Riggle, who played Phil Dunphy's real estate rival Gil Thorpe in two episodes last season, is one of the names being floated for a potential spinoff. The spinoff proposal, though, is still in the early stages.

Read Full Post
<p>Robin Wright gives, quite literally, the performance of her lifetime in Ari Folman's new film 'The Congress'</p>

Robin Wright gives, quite literally, the performance of her lifetime in Ari Folman's new film 'The Congress'

Credit: Drafthouse Films

Review: Robin Wright shakes loose reality in 'The Congress'

A stunning adult mediation on identity in the digital age

Ariel Folman's "Waltz With Bashir" was a strong use of animation to express something personal, a worldview that tried to paint an emotional picture of what it's like to have gone through something harrowing, tied to both your religious and national identity, something that skews your perception for the rest of your life. I was quite taken with the film when it came out, and I have seen it a few times since on Blu-ray, and find it quite beautiful and sad.

One of several films to premiere at Cannes this summer before playing Fantastic Fest in Austin this month, "The Congress" is something else entirely. Loosely working from a novel by Stanislaw Lem, whose work was also the basis of "Solaris," Folman has made the movie that Andrew Niccol was desperately straining to make with "SimOne." The result is a beautiful, eccentric science-fiction story about the liquid nature of identity in the digital age and what it is that defines performance in the first place. Robin Wright stars as a savagely fictionalized version of herself, facing the end of her career in the form of industry-wide indifference thanks to years of meltdowns, rejected offers, and questionable creative decisions. Her agent, played by Harvey Keitel, comes to her with what is described as "the last offer you'll ever get," delivered by the unflinchingly blunt Danny Huston as a studio head who remembers the promise of the young Buttercup and who is angry at the reality of who Wright has become.

Read Full Post
"Secret Sex Lives: Swingers"

 "Secret Sex Lives: Swingers"

Credit: TLC

Exclusive: It's a wedding on the finale of 'Secret Sex Lives: Swingers'

Not every couple is feeling so committed, though

Sadly, "Secret Sex Lives: Swingers" is wrapping up, and in the season finale our intrepid couples are questioning their commitments to one another and, in one case, walking down the aisle and sobbing about it. Yeah, I'm not sure why they're bothering to get married either, but maybe Rebecca just wanted the dress. This exclusive clip from the show (which airs Sat. Sept. 28 at 10:00 p.m. on Discovery Fit & Health) reveals exactly what happens when swingers get together. 

Read Full Post

Fox orders 'Man/Child' pilot starring Damon Wayans Jr.

Fox orders "Man/Child" pilot starring Damon Wayans Jr.
The "Happy Endings" and "New Girl" alum will star in a comedy about single dads.

A&E remaking French zombie drama "The Returned"

Ex-"Lost" boss Carlton Cuse is in talks to adapt the French series, which Sundance Channel will air for Halloween.

"The Love Boat" is getting a musical

A Vegas stage show called "The Love Boats" is set to launch next year, featuring music from 1977 to 1986, the years the series ran.

"Game of Thrones" casts Hizdahr zo Loraq

British actor Joel Fry will play the "young scion of an ancient Meereenese family who crosses paths with Daenerys Targaryen."

Watch the newest "Walking Dead" promo

Featuring a glimpse of "The Wire's" Larry Gilliard Jr.

"Young and the Restless" picks up a "Lost" alum

Cynthia Watros will begin on the soap in November.

"Parks and Rec" is returning to the Indianapolis Colts stadium
Amy Poehler is expected to be on hand to shoot scenes at Lucas Oil Stadium. Last December, the guys on the cast filmed scenes on the Colts' football field.

Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Kate Upton are officially a coupl
The Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover model is dating the former "Dancing" hunk.

Read Full Post
Watch: The Killers' new video for 'Shot At The Night'

Watch: The Killers' new video for 'Shot At The Night'

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas

Bella Heathcote plays a maid who gets her prince in The Killers’ new video for “Shot At The Night,” the first single from the band’s best-of collection,  “Direct Hits," out Nov. 11.

Faster than you can say “Blackjack,” she ditches her cleaning cart for an evening out with her dark and mysterious Romeo, played by Max Minghella, and his friends, who are all perfectly fine with the Cinderella-in-the-making crashing their evening. She returns to the hotel before she turns into a pumpkin, but keeps her magic slipper.

Ever see the Jennifer Lopez/Ralph Fiennes movie, “Maid In Manhattan?” It’s kind of like that but shorter and cuter and there’s no “happily ever after” far as we know.

Filmed at The Cosmopolitan, the clip serves as a love letter to the Killers’ hometown, Las Vegas, with the city lovingly shot.

Read Full Post
"The Blacklist"

 "The Blacklist"

Credit: NBC

Listen: CulturePop No. 27 - Guest Jim Colucci, 'Real Housewives,' 'Hostages'

Listen: CulturePop No. 27 - Guest Jim Colucci, 'Real Housewives,' 'Hostages'

Melinda and I have to admit that we've had amazingly good luck with getting fun, fascinating guests for our CulturePop podcast, and this week was no exception. Jim Colucci, author of "The Q Guide to the 'Golden Girls'" and "'Will & Grace': Fabulously Uncensored" and the Must-Hear TV correspondent for 'The Frank DeCaro Show on Sirius XM, joined us to talk about both old and new TV shows, including "The Real Housewives of New Jersey," "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" and, of course, that beloved '80s sitcom. And yes, we're definitely having him back soon. Here's the rundown: 

Read Full Post
Exclusive: Bernie Taupin and T Bone Burnett on Elton John's song, 'Oceans Away'

Exclusive: Bernie Taupin and T Bone Burnett on Elton John's song, 'Oceans Away'

Taupin on writing the opening track to 'The Diving Board'

Elton John’s “The Diving Board,” his 30th studio album, came out this week and it’s a beautiful, often complex, piano-led album.

In this HitFix exclusive, John’s longtime lyricist, Bernie Taupin, explains the meaning behind “Oceans Away,” the album’s poignant opening track, which features only John’s vocals and piano playing. Producer T Bone Burnett looks on, adding a few comments at the end.

“Oceans Away” is about Taupin’s father and his service as a soldier during WWll.

“My dad’s pretty much been soaked into so many of my songs. I got to the point where I thought I wanted to do one thing that was just a penultimate song about my father and the Great Generation,” he says. As “the last of those people who fought in the second World War are disappearing and dying that they not be forgotten.”

Read Full Post
<p>Yep. That's a Beast.</p>

Yep. That's a Beast.

Credit: Pathe Films

A one-sheet reveals Vincent Cassel and Lea Seydoux in new 'Beauty and the Beast'

Things are getting hairy for the French stars in February

Whoa. I didn't even realize Christophe Gans was working on this one.

"Beauty and the Beast" is one of those irresistible targets for filmmakers, and I would think for French filmmakers, there is a whole different level of expectation attached to anyone who tackles the material. After all, "La Belle et la Bete," the 1946 film by Jean Cocteau, is one of the classic texts of French cinema, and one of the great fantasy films of all time. Jean Marais gave one of the great film performances as the Beast, and the design of the Beast is both memorable and striking.

Over the years, we've seen many takes on the story, and in America, the one that is most defining was made by Disney in 1991. That was more than just a hit for them. If you didn't see the film during that initial theatrical run, you might not understand just what a phenomenon it was. People reacted like they were at a live performance, and it made perfect sense that the film ended up nominated for Best Picture that year. It's still one of the biggest cultural hits they've ever had, and it continues to be an enormously popular catalog title for them.

Read Full Post
"Project Runway"

 "Project Runway"

Credit: Lifetime

'Project Runway' recap: It's double trouble for the designers

It's time for the textile challenge!

If you haven't watched the episode yet, you may want to before reading this. It's not that last night's "Project Runway" was all that exciting (in fact, it was a little dull), but that the elimination was actually shocking. Thus, I proceed, but I'm starting with spoilers. Consider yourself warned.

Read Full Post
<p>Ron Swanson enjoys himself on Thursday's &quot;Parks and Recreation&quot;</p>

Ron Swanson enjoys himself on Thursday's "Parks and Recreation"

Credit: NBC

Thursday ratings analysis - Bigger 'Bang,' but smaller 'Parks' and 'Men'

Oh and 'Grey's Anatomy' is still a hit
[As promised, I'm going to start doing some additional ratings analysis a bit after the morning Fast National numbers come in each morning/afternoon. It's a way to get away from merely the regurgitation of data as quickly as possible at 8:30 a.m., though I'll still be doing that. It's possible that next week, I may push the analysis to the afternoon after Final figures become available. I'm trying to get a hang of a routine. I'll also be doing some Live+3 and Live+7 analysis this season as those numbers become available.]
Thursday is traditionally the most valuable night for advertisers and therefore for TV networks, making it a ratings battleground. Of course, thanks to "The Big Bang Theory," the battle is a bit of a rout, especially when CBS can air two episodes of the Emmy-winning comedy. 
"The Big Bang Theory" is Thursday, September 26's obvious Fast Nationals ratings winner, but it also made "The Crazy Ones" into a clear winner, at least for one week. We know "The Michael J. Fox Show" isn't a winner, but it's too early to call it a loser. It's not too early, though, to start worrying about "Parks and Recreation," or at least its long-term future. 
Click through for my full analysis...
Read Full Post
Watch: Teaser for Britney Spears' sexy 'Work Bitch' video

Watch: Teaser for Britney Spears' sexy 'Work Bitch' video

Bring your own riding crop

See Britney Spears pose through this 15-second trailer for her “Work Bitch” video. See her crouch in a two-piece outfit. See her stand still as a Lamborghini drives behind her eight other women. See her admire herself in the mirror. See her flick her hair.

That’s basically it for the teaser to the Ben Mor-directed clip for Spears’ current single, which debuted at No. 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 this week.

Mor had this to say to MTV News about Britney Spears video:
"It's about creating iconic backdrops for her and really letting her create iconic moments that represent the theme of the song...And she's definitely letting people know that if you want to achieve the status that she has, it comes with a lot of work and effort."

E! offers a little more insight with this still from the shoot that feature Spears hitting a woman on all fours with a riding crop.

Read Full Post