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Harry Potter Director to Return for ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Spinoff (Exclusive)

17 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

“Harry Potter” filmmaker David Yates has a few more tricks up his sleeve.

Sources tell Variety that Yates, who directed several Harry Potter movies including the final “Deathly Hallows” installments, has agreed to return for the first installment of the Harry Potter spinoff trilogy “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.”

No deal has been made but insiders confirm both sides are in negotiations.

Warner Bros. announced the Harry Potter-themed project last September with J.K. Rowling, author of the hit franchise, making her screenwriting debut.

Set in New York roughly seven decades before Harry Potter’s saga starts, “Fantastic Beasts” is based on the Hogwarts textbook of the same name and follows the adventures of its author, Newt Scamander.

“Although it will be set in the worldwide community of witches and wizards where I was so happy for seventeen years, ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ is neither a »


- Justin Kroll

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Sandra Bullock and David Gordon Green Team on ‘Our Brand is Crisis’ (Exclusive)

19 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

After her success in “Gravity,” Sandra Bullock is again orbiting a Warner Bros. project.

Sources tell Variety that Warners has greenlit the political dramedy “Our Brand is Crisis,” which Bullock has committed to star in with David Gordon Green set to direct. The film is based on the 2005 documentary of the same name, which focuses on the use of American political campaign strategies in South America. 

Bullock had been linked to the project as far back as awards season, but was still weighing her options. Insiders say that following a meeting with Green, who has been in the mix for the directing job for some time, the actress was convinced to join the project on the strength of his vision.

Bullock will also exec produce with George Clooney and Grant Heslov producing through their Smokehouse Pictures banner. Peter Straughan penned the script. Courtenay Valenti and Racheline Benveniste are overseeing the project for the studio. »


- Justin Kroll

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TNT Nabs Rights To Lionsgate’s ‘Hunger Games’ & ‘Divergent’ Franchises

19 hours ago | Deadline New York | See recent Deadline New York news »

TNT has inked a deal with Lionsgate for network television rights to The Hunger Games and Divergent movie franchises. The acquisition includes the network premiere windows for the next two Hunger Games movies, Mockingjay – Part 1, which opens in theaters this November, and Mockingjay – Part 2, set for theatrical release in November 2015. The deal also includes network premiere windows for all four Divergent movies, including the first one, which grossed over $150 million at the domestic box office this year, and Insurgent, which is set for theatrical release in March 2015.

In addition, TNT gets a second window to the first two Hunger Games films – The Hunger Games (2012) and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013), whose network premiere rights are owned by ABC Family.

The Hunger Games is slated to air on TNT for the first time in winter 2015, and the network will add the second installment, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, in winter 2016. Both »


- The Deadline Team

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Aaron Paul Creates Scavenger Hunt for Fans on Emmys Day—Find Out How to Win Breaking Bad Memorabilia!

19 hours ago | E! Online | See recent E! Online news »

Scavenger hunt, bitch!  In honor of the upcoming 2014 Emmy Awards, which are now just four days away, Aaron Paul has promised to hide Breaking Bad memorabilia around Los Angeles, sending the show's loyal fan base on a wild search around the city.  The 34-year-old actor announced the new via his Instagram page. Currently, the post has received 112,000 likes.  "In honor of the Emmys and the final time Breaking Bad will be up for anything I will be holding a scavenger hunt around L.A. on Monday for all you Breaking Bad fans," the Need for Speed star, who played Jesse Pinkman on the hit AMC series, wrote. "There will be signed Breaking Bad scripts, posters, dolls, action »


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Inside Ferguson As Protests Continue

just now | PEOPLE.com | See recent PEOPLE.com news »

Protests continued in the troubled St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Missouri, Wednesday night - as emotions ran high over the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown on Aug. 9. On Wednesday, protestors were mostly calm and generous, offering water to strangers and mingling peacefully. After 8 p.m., as marches began, protestors shouted, "Hands up! Don't shoot!" and police began to usher them out of the way.  "This was the spark," Norita Bonaparte, 40, a Ferguson resident, tells People. "It put more fuel to the fire. St. Louis really is the 'Show Me State' and they're not going to stop until they feel justice has prevailed. »


- Alicia C. Dennis, @aliciacdennis

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Inside Ferguson As Protests Continue

just now | PEOPLE.com | See recent PEOPLE.com news »

Protests continued in the troubled St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Missouri, Wednesday night - as emotions ran high over the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown on Aug. 9. On Wednesday, protestors were mostly calm and generous, offering water to strangers and mingling peacefully. After 8 p.m., as marches began, protestors shouted, "Hands up! Don't shoot!" and police began to usher them out of the way.  "This was the spark," Norita Bonaparte, 40, a Ferguson resident, tells People. "It put more fuel to the fire. St. Louis really is the 'Show Me State' and they're not going to stop until they feel justice has prevailed. »


- Alicia C. Dennis, @aliciacdennis

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Jennifer Lopez Doesn't "Whore Around", But Does She Prefer Younger Men? Watch Now!

45 minutes ago | E! Online | See recent E! Online news »

Chelsea Handler isn't shy about her um, exploits in the bedroom—heck, she's the author of a book called My Horizontal Life: A Collection of One-Night Stands. It's unclear whether Jennifer Lopez was familiar with the late-night host's more mature work, but based on her Chelsea Lately appearance Thursday, it certainly doesn't seem that way! J.Lo,  45,who is single after her recent breakup with boyfriend Casper Smart, 27, opened up to Chelsea about her own romantic life. "I like being in a relationship," said the mother of two. "I'm not one to like whore around and stuff like that—that's not my thing." The look on Chelsea's face was truly »


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Sophie Turner says Sansa's 'Game of Thrones' season 5 storyline was a 'big surprise'

1 hour ago | Hitfix | See recent Hitfix news »

One of the benefits of being discovered on a hit TV show is that a chance at a significant movie career is usually in the cards. Actually, it usually only occurs with talent on show that hits the pop culture lexicon.  In this case, "Game of Thrones." Sophie Turner has spent the last four years on "GoT" playing Sansa Stark and as any loyal viewer can tell you, she's been put through the ringer.  She's seen her father beheaded (poor Ned), been engaged to a mad king against her will, was almost raped and then forced to marry the show's most popular character, Lord Tyrion (Peter Dinklage), who doesn't happen to be that popular in King's Landing. Those key dramatic moments, among others, is just one reason Turner has come to the attention of casting directors, producers, international financiers and movie directors. She's got talent that's ready to be explored in other projects. »


- Gregory Ellwood

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Oldenburg Retrospective for Cult Director Philippe Mora

1 hour ago | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

The Oldenburg International Film Festival, an indie fest billed as “Germany's Sundance” will honor Australian cult director Philippe Mora this year with a retrospective of his life's work. One of the most consistently eclectic of the 70s and 80s, Mora's work has ranged form controversial Nazi documentary Swastika – banned in Israel and Germany for its use of Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun's home movies – to outlaw-biopic Mad Dog Morgan starring Dennis Hopper to superhero spoof The Return of Captain Invincible featuring Alan Arkin. Mora will attend the 21st Oldenburg festival and will receive the fest's German Independence

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- Scott Roxborough

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Akshay Kumar to Star in Lionsgate, Endemol Indian Remake ‘Warrior’

2 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

London — Top Bollywood actor, Akshay Kumar will headline “Brothers”, the Hindi-language remake of Gavin O’Connor’s 2011 contact sports drama “Warrior” that starred Nick Nolte, Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton.

Indian powerhouse Dharma Productions, one of the producers of “The Lunchbox”, has boarded the project as co-producer.

Karan Malhotra, director of Dharma hit “Agneepath” starring Hrithik Roshan will direct.

The film was previously announced as a co-production between Lionsgate and Endemol India, itself a 51:49 joint venture between Endemol Bv and The Chernin Group’s CA Media, to be produced under the banner Eyedentity Motion Pictures, Endemol India’s film arm.

Dharma is headed by Karan Johar, writer, co-producer and director of Shah Rukh Khan vehicle “My Name is Khan”, and who is also a judge on “Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa”, the Indian version of the “Strictly Come Dancing” format, and popular chat show “Koffee with Karan”.

Johar makes his acting »


- Naman Ramachandran

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‘Big Brother’ Live Eviction: Julie Chen Takes Als Ice Bucket Challenge, Houseguest Returns

2 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

(Spoiler alert: Do not read on if you have not yet seen Thursday night's live eviction episode of “Big Brother.”) Julie Chen took the Als Ice Bucket Challenge live amid a wild night of departures and returns on “Big Brother.” She was challenged by CBS head honcho and her husband Les Moonves to take the challenge live on “Big Brother,” and so she wrapped the night by getting all wet. “The Millers” star Will Arnett was there to give her an assist by dumping the water. Also read: Als Ice Bucket Challenge Raises $10.3 Million in Just 24 Hours It was eviction night, »


- Jason Hughes

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Inside the Emmy Parties: Aaron Paul, Betsy Brandt Rev Audi Party

3 hours ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

The Emmy Awards aren’t till Monday, Aug. 25, but the celebrations start early. Variety will be on hand inside the best parties around Hollywood as the stars mingle, nosh and toast to TV’s finest. Here’s our party report for Thursday, Aug. 21:

7:15 p.m. Ty Burrell is the first one on the carpet at Audi’s pre-Emmys party at Cecconi’s in West Hollywood, in jeans and a sport coat. Classic look. Hands in his pocket, top two buttons unbuttoned, showing a little chest.

7:17 p.m. Navid Negahban, the former “Homeland” big bad, arrives next, and quickly dethrones Burrell from the most chest bared title.

7:21 p.m. Joe Morton hits the carpet wearing a B613 baseball cap, a reference to his role in “Scandal” as the (former) head of the covert government program and candidate for world’s worst dad. Morton also sports the Lorne Michaels »


- Kevin Noonan and Whitney Friedlander

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U.K.’s Channel 4 Detonates North Korean Thriller ‘Opposite Number’

3 hours ago | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

London — U.K. broadcaster Channel 4 has greenlit North Korean political thriller “Opposite Number.” The 10-part drama series has been penned by British playwright and screenwriter Matt Charman, who wrote the original script for Steven Spielberg’s upcoming Cold War movie.

The Channel 4 series kicks off with a covert mission to North Korea by a British nuclear scientist, who is then taken prisoner. This triggers an international crisis as he could be forced to help North Korea weaponize its nuclear technology. The British Prime Minister and the U.S. President, two leaders of very different political stripes, must work together and mobilize every level of their governments to pull the world back from the brink.

Charman said: “North Korea is one of the last truly impenetrable nations on the planet, and one of the most dangerous for the West. I wanted to write a drama that could blow the lid »


- Leo Barraclough

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ABC Brands Shonda Rhimes Lineup Tgit or Thank God It's Thursday (Video)

3 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

ABC has a new tagline for their Thursday lineup this fall. In a nod to their classic Tgif lineup, they're trying to establish Tgit or “Thank God It's Thursday.” A new promo shows the characters of the three shows that make up the night touting the moniker thanks to some clever editing, as well as their love for the one woman they all have in common. Also read: Shonda Rhimes on ‘How to Get Away With Murder’ Title: ‘We Don't Consider a Hashtag When We're Writing a Show’ Maybe the network should have gone with Tgis instead. After all, their entire lineup is. »


- Jason Hughes

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So Weird! Man Arrested and Jailed Claimed to Be Scott Weiland, but Former Stone Temple Pilots Frontman Is Safe in the Studio

3 hours ago | E! Online | See recent E! Online news »

Update: First of all, Scott Weiland was in the studio tonight, not in jail—nor has he been in jail any time since July 26. The rocker, flanked by the members of his band the Wildabouts, made a video late Thursday to assure fans that he most certainly had not been arrested for shoplifting and drug possession, as was first reported by TMZ and subsequently confirmed by the Beverly Hills Police Department. "I've actually been touring, writing and recording my new album," the former Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolver frontman said. "In the studio we're in right now. A Los Angeles studio. All I have to say to our fans is, whether you found it funny, or interesting or whether you were sad, »


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Iran’s Asghar Farhadi to Head Busan Festival Jury

4 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Seoul — Iranian filmmaker, Asghar Farhadi (“A Separation”) will lead the main competition jury at October’s Busan film festival (Oct. 2-11, 2014)

Fellow jurors who will award a $30,000 prize to the winner of the New Currents Asian film competition include film studies professor Dina Iordanova, French philosopher Jacques Ranciere, Indian actress Suhasini Maniratnam, and Bong Joon-ho, Korean director of “The Host” and “The Snowpiercer”. 

The festival has also enlisted other celebrities. This year’s opening ceremony will be hosted by Japanese actor Ken Watanabe (”Inception,” “The Last Samurai”), and Korean actress Moon So-ri (“Peppermint Candy,” “Oasis”).

The jury for Busan’s Wide Angle section, a competition section for shorts, animations, documentaries and experimental films is set to include Singaporean filmmaker Tan Pin Pin, Maria Bonsanti, artistic director of France’s Cinema du Reel and Korean documentary maker, Yi Seung-jun (“Planet of Snail”).

In its 19th year, Biff has named local director Jung-Jin-woo, »


- Nemo Kim

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Gwen Stefani Is Too Cool, Pharrell Williams Too Nice in ‘The Voice’ Season 7 Promo (Video)

4 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

The panel on “The Voice” is shaking it up for the third time, with Gwen Stefani and Pharrell Williams signing on to join Adam Levine and Blake Shelton on the stalwart NBC reality show for its seventh season. Levine and Shelton have been with the show since the beginning. Prior to this season, Christine Aguilera and Cee Lo Green had been rotating with Shakira and Usher in the center seats of the show. While it's always a gamble to mix up the chemistry of a panel like this — just as “American Idol” and “The X Factor” — NBC has »


- Jason Hughes

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What we want to see during this year's Emmy Awards show

4 hours ago | Hitfix | See recent Hitfix news »

The 66th Annual Emmy Awards are almost here and, well, we're sort of excited about it. Granted, it's going to be a total flip from the MTV Video Music Awards the night before, but with Seth Meyers as host there is the slight chance it may surprise us.  This one could feature a pleasant surprise or two. Wait, we just realized notoriously terrible Oscars co-producer Don Mischer (the Anne Hathaway/James Franco year in case you blocked it from your mind) is executive producing again.  Perhaps we should be more reserved in our hopes for something special?  Yes, we probably should. In any event, we know the Emmys can't screw up celebrating "Breaking Bad" for a final time (hopefully with an Outstanding Drama Series win), potentially crowning "Orange Is The New Black" as the new King, er, Queen of Comedies and, sadly, saying goodbye to Robin Williams.  That being said, »


- Gregory Ellwood, Louis Virtel

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Shailene Woodley Loses More Than Her Mother in Haunting ‘White Bird in a Blizzard’ Trailer (Video)

4 hours ago | The Wrap | See recent The Wrap news »

Shailene Woodley is a teenager trying to make sense of her life in the first trailer for “White Bird in a Blizzard.” She's struggling with her own burgeoning sexuality, the psychological enigma that is her mother, potrayed by Eva Green, and the complexities of relationships. See video: Shailene Woodley Comforts Man Stabbed in Eye in Deleted ‘Divergent’ Scene Over two minutes, the trailer paints a picture of confusion and loss, as Green goes missing from Woodley's life, leaving her and her father to try and pick up the pieces. Woodley is seen romantically entangled with two different men, one the older police. »


- Jason Hughes

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Film Review: ‘Jersey Shore Massacre’

4 hours ago | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

A contender for the “Could Be Woise” prize among this year’s dogs of late summer, “Jersey Shore Massacre” is a kinda-sorta comedy slasher faintly affiliated (via exec producer JWoww) to MTV’s popular reality skein. Several beneficiaries of silicone and steroid enhancement hook up for a fatal party weekend in this knucklehead exercise, which is somewhat better crafted than it is written or acted. It has a few more brain cells than, say, “Zombie Strippers”; too bad they’re mostly owned by the tech contributors. Still, as willfully lowbrow dumb fun goes, it’s pretty painless. Home-format prospects will rapidly outpace any theatrical hopes in the pic’s multi-platform release Aug. 22.

After a de rigueur bloody prologue, we’re introduced to the central bimbette sextet, half of whom are employed at Brooklyn’s Touch of Class hair salon with the inevitable mincing-gay-stereotype figure. Teaming up with three pals, they »


- Dennis Harvey

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