Glen Campbell dead at 81 after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease

August 9, 2017

by John Larson

After battling Alzheimer’s disease for several years, Glen Campbell, an iconic entertainer in country music, died in Nashville on August 8, 2017, according to the Associated Press. He was 81. Campbell was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2011.

Campbell rose to fame in the 1960s was best known for his hit 1975 “Rhinestone Cowboy,” which was No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. His other hit songs included “Southern Nights,” “Galveston” and “It’s Only Make Believe.” The versatile entertainer was also an actor and TV host. He starred in “Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour” on CBS from 1969 to 1972. Campbell, who admitted having addictions to drugs and alcohol for most of his career, won five Grammys and sold 45 million records worldwide.

He was the subject of the 2014 documentary film “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me,” which chronicled his last concert tour and his life dealing with Alzheimer’s. His last studio album, “Adios,” was released in June 2017.

Campbell his survived by his fourth wife, Kim; eight children; and 10 grandchildren.

2017 ACM Honors: George Strait, Brad Paisley, Kelsea Ballerini, Thomas Rhett among performers

April 9, 2017

ACM Honors

Kelsea Ballerini and Thomas Rhett (Photo at left by Guerin Blask. Photo at right by Sonja Flemming/CBS.)

The following is a press release from the Academy of Country Music:

The Academy of Country Music has revealed the first round of performers and ticket on-sale date for the 11th Annual ACM Honors, an evening dedicated to recognizing the special honorees and off-camera category winners from the 52nd Academy of Country Music Awards®. Music superstars confirmed to perform at the televised event include Kelsea Ballerini, Vince Gill, Toby Keith, Little Big Town, Maren Morris, Brad Paisley, Thomas Rhett, Hillary Scott, and George Strait. The 11th Annual ACM Honors will tape Wednesday, August 23 at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN, and broadcast on Friday, September 15 (9:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.

 Tickets will go on-sale to the general public at Ticketmaster.com and the Ryman Auditorium box office today, August 9 at 10:00 AM CST.

 As previously announced, Special Award recipients celebrated at the 11th Annual ACM Honors will include Kelsea Ballerini (Gene Weed Milestone Award), Toby Keith (Poet’s Award), Bob Kingsley (Mae Boren Axton Service Award), Reba McEntire (Mae Boren Axton Service Award), “Nashville” (Tex Ritter Film Award), Dolly Parton (Gary Haber Lifting Lives Award), Shel Silverstein (Poet’s Award, awarded posthumously), and George Strait (Cliffie Stone Icon Award). The evening will also honor winners of the Industry and Studio Recording Awards, along with Songwriter of the Year Award winner Lori McKenna.

 The Academy of Country Music will present trophies to previously announced Special Award recipients Eric Church (Merle Haggard Spirit Award) and Willie Nelson (Poet’s Award) at a later date.

 Additional details will be announced in the coming weeks. For more information, please visit www.ACMcountry.com

2017 New York Film Festival: main slate announced

August 8, 2017

New York Film Festival 2017

The following is a press release from the New York Film Festival:

The 55th New York Film Festival’s Main Slate has been announced, featuring a selection of 25 films from around the globe.

NYFF Director and Selection Committee Chair Kent Jones said, “Every year, I’m asked about the themes in our Main Slate line-up, and every year I say the same thing: we choose the best films we see, and the common themes and preoccupations arise only after the fact. As I look at this slate of beautiful work, I could just make a series of simple observations: that these films come from all over the globe; that there is a nice balance of filmmakers known and unknown to many here in New York; that the overall balance between frankness and artistry holds me in awe; that there are two gala selections with the word ‘wonder’ in their titles; and that eight of the 25 films were directed by women.”

This year’s Main Slate showcases films honored at Cannes including Ruben Östlund’s Palme d’Or–winner “The Square”; Robin Campillo’s “BPM,” awarded the Cannes Critics’ Prize; and Agnès Varda & JR’s “Faces Places,” which took home the Golden Eye. From Berlin, Aki Kaurismäki’s Silver Bear–winner “The Other Side of Hope” and Agnieszka Holland’s Alfred Bauer Prize–winner “Spoor” mark the returns of two New York Film Festival veterans, while Luca Guadagnino’s acclaimed “Call Me by Your Name” will be his NYFF debut. Also returning are Arnaud Desplechin, Noah Baumbach, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Claire Denis, Philippe Garrel, Lucrecia Martel, and Hong Sang-soo, who has two features in the lineup this year, while filmmakers new to the festival include Sean Baker, Greta Gerwig, Serge Bozon, Dee Rees, Chloé Zhao, Joachim Trier, Alain Gomis, and Valeska Grisebach.

As previously announced, the NYFF55 Opening Night is Richard Linklater’s “Last Flag Flying,” Todd Haynes’s “Wonderstruck” is Centerpiece, and Woody Allen’s “Wonder Wheel” will close the festival.

The 55th New York Film Festival Main Slate

Opening Night
Last Flag Flying
Dir. Richard Linklater

Centerpiece
Wonderstruck
Dir. Todd Haynes

Closing Night
Wonder Wheel
Dir. Woody Allen

Before We Vanish
Dir. Kiyoshi Kurosawa

BPM (Beats Per Minute)/120 battements par minute
Dir. Robin Campillo

Bright Sunshine In/Un beau soleil intérieur
Dir. Claire Denis

Call Me by Your Name
Dir. Luca Guadagnino

The Day After
Dir. Hong Sang-soo

Faces Places/Visages villages
Dir. Agnès Varda & JR

Félicité
Dir. Alain Gomis

The Florida Project
Dir. Sean Baker

Ismael’s Ghosts/Les fantômes d’Ismaël
Dir. Arnaud Desplechin

Lady Bird
Dir. Greta Gerwig

Lover for a Day/L’Amant d’un jour
Dir. Philippe Garrel

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
Dir. Noah Baumbach

Mrs. Hyde/Madame Hyde
Dir. Serge Bozon

Mudbound
Dir. Dee Rees

On the Beach at Night Alone
Dir. Hong Sang-soo

The Other Side of Hope/Toivon tuolla puolen
Dir. Aki Kaurismäki

The Rider
Dir. Chloé Zhao

Spoor/Pokot
Dir. Agnieszka Holland, in cooperation with Kasia Adamik

The Square
Dir. Ruben Östlund

Thelma
Dir. Joachim Trier

Western
Dir. Valeska Grisebach

Zama
Dir. Lucrecia Martel

NYFF Special Events, Spotlight on Documentary, Revivals, Convergence, and Projections sections, as well as filmmaker conversations and panels, will be announced in the coming weeks.

The 18-day New York Film Festival highlights the best in world cinema, featuring works from celebrated filmmakers as well as fresh new talent. The selection committee, chaired by Jones, also includes Dennis Lim, FSLC Director of Programming; Florence Almozini, FSLC Associate Director of Programming; and Amy Taubin, Contributing Editor, Film Comment and Sight & Sound.

Tickets for the 55th New York Film Festival will go on sale September 10. Become a member by August 16 to get discounts and early ticket access at NYFF. VIP passes and packages are on sale now and offer one of the earliest opportunities to purchase tickets and secure seats at some of the festival’s biggest events. Learn more here.

Fox announces new singing competition ‘The Four’

August 8, 2017

Fox logo

Just over a year after cancelling “American Idol,” the Fox network has announced that it will debut “The Four,” a new singing competition, which will premiere in 2018 on  a date to be announced. “American Idol” is being revived on ABC in January 2018, with judge Katy Perry and host Ryan Seacrest as the on-air talent announced so far. “American Idol” was on Fox from 2002 to 2016.

Here is what Fox announced about “The Four” in a press release:

“The Four” begins where most competitions end: with the four finalists. Four super-talented and fiercely competitive singers, chosen from their auditions by the show’s panel of music industry experts, will try to defend their coveted spots on the stage, as they are challenged individually by new singers determined to replace them. Each week, if any of the four are outperformed, they’ll go home and their challengers will take their place.

And those challengers could be fans who had been sitting on a couch one week, and singing onstage the next. Viewers who think they’ve got the talent to compete and unseat the four singers onstage will have the opportunity to submit an audition video. America will have the chance to decide who is brought onto the show by voting on the available streamed auditions and influencing which challengers will take on “The Four” and shake up the competition.

If the existing four singers outperform their challengers, then they survive to sing another week, until the end of the season, when the singers have safely secured their spots on stage and face off against each other, resulting in one being named the winner. At stake is the ultimate prize: the panel of industry experts becomes key players on the winner’s team. This elite group of star-makers will help shepherd the winner’s career and be fully invested in making him or her a breakout star.

Expert panelists and additional information regarding “The Four” will be announced soon.

“The Four” was created by Armoza Formats and is produced by ITV Entertainment in association with Armoza Formats.  David George, Adam Sher, David Eilenberg, Jessica Sebastian-Dayeh, Simon Thomas, Becca Walker, David Friedman, Avi Armoza and Nehama Cohen will serve as executive producers.

2017 Fantastic Fest: first wave of films announced

August 8, 2017

Fantastic Fest 2017 LOGO

The following is a press release from Fantastic Fest:

Fantastic Fest, Alamo Drafthouse’s annual descent into chaos and carnage, returns for its 13th year, screaming “Yalla!” at full throttle. Loosely translated as “Let’s go,” this year’s rally cry is informed by the Arabic theme that will permeate the festival as it once again delves deep into the corners of the world’s best cinema.
“I’m proud to say that this is truly lucky thirteen for us,” said Tim League, festival founder and Alamo Drafthouse CEO. “We have another ferocious slate celebrating new and returning filmmakers from all over the world. It’s again an honor and privilege to welcome them and their brilliant, brave work.”
Kicking off proceedings with this year’s opening night film is Martin McDonagh in attendance to present the US premiere of his beautifully comic and delightfully dark tale of loss and redemption, THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI. S. Craig Zahler makes his triumphant return with the US premiere of 2018’s most hyper-violent slice of brute force, BRAWL IN CELL BLOCK 99. Not to be outmuscled, Zahler’s bringing backup in the form of the thunderous trifecta of Vince Vaughn, Don Johnson and Udo Kier. And Barry Keoghan marks his first Fantastic Fest, sharing Yorgos Lanthimos’ savage horror epic THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER for the first time in the US.
Embracing cinema spanning from Egypt to Lebanon to Iraq to Afghanistan, the festival turns an eye to celebrate the best of the region. Highlights include Egypt’s rarely seen Rocky Horror Picture Show adaptation ANYAB and the International Premiere of the box office smash AL ASLEYEEN (aka THE ORIGINALS) directed by Marwan Hamed. “It’s truly a joy to be able to showcase a variety of Arabic genre films never before seen in the US to shatter preconceptions.” said Fantastic Fest Creative Director Evrim Ersoy. “Cinema from this region is as exciting, inventive and as wild as anything we’ve ever seen and we’re here to prove it. It’s going to be a wild ride! Yalla, Habibi!”
Fantastic Fest’s global reach isn’t relegated exclusively to Arabic nations, as it has once again scoured the corners of the globe to bring the best cinema to Austin, TX. Sweden is well represented with Ruben Ostlund’s brilliantly sardonic THE SQUARE; Japan’s master of malevolence, Takashi Miike, hits a bloody century with his 100th feature, BLADE OF THE IMMORTAL; Scotland flies its flesh-eating flag with John McPhail’s zombie musical, ANNA AND THE APOCALYPSE; and Austrian Oscar winner Stefan Ruzowitsky delivers a brutal and relentless ride with COLD HELL.
Maine’s finest son, Stephen King, is gorgeously represented with two standouts from Netflix’s burgeoning genre slate. GERALD’S GAME receives its US premiere along with the welcome return of Fantastic Fest alumni Mike Flanagan, who delivers a chilling adaptation of one of King’s most beloved bedside tales starring Carla Gugino and Bruce Greenwood. And Fantastic Fest first-timer Zak Hilditch will be in attendance to share his perfectly precise vision of King’s uber-creepy novella, 1922, for its world premiere.
Sticking with the theme of world premieres, this year’s program features a selective set of titles from first-time feature filmmakers whose wildly impressive debuts belie the depth of their filmographies. Spanish short master Yayo Herrero excels with his fantasy horror, MAUS; Bradley Buecker explores wasted youth and packs a visceral punch from the wrong side of the tracks with JUVENILE; and Lukas Feigelfeld shocks with his atmospheric exploration of a medieval hell in HAGAZUSSA – A HEATHEN’S CURSE.
Fantastic Fest alumni are well represented this year as DAN DREAM reunites KLOWN’s dynamic duo of Casper Christensen and Frank Hvam for an electric road trip back to the ’80s; GENERATION B sees WASTE LAND director Pieter Van Hees return with a mad comedy; and RON GOOSSENS: LOW-BUDGET STUNTMAN delivers the warm embrace of directors Steffen Haars and Flip van der Kuil, whose previous NEW KIDS features and BROs BEFORE HOs crushed at previous editions of Fantastic Fest.
For those unable to make the pilgrimage to Austin this September, there’s still reason to rejoice as we’ll be realizing a long-brewing strategy of bringing Fantastic Fest and its finely curated programming to three Alamo Drafthouse flagship theaters over the weekend of September 29th. Fans of the best in genre films in San Francisco, Brooklyn and Denver will all feature an exclusive slate of Fantastic Fest titles. Tickets and badges are scheduled to go on sale in the coming weeks. For more information go to fantasticfest.com
FIRST WAVE FILM LINEUP BELOW:
1922
USA, 2017
World Premiere, 101 mins
Director – Zak Hilditch
1922 is based on Stephen King’s 131-page story telling of a man’s confession of his wife’s murder. The tale is told from from the perspective of Wilfred James, the story’s unreliable narrator who admits to killing his wife, Arlette, in Nebraska. But after he buries her body, he finds himself terrorized by rats and, as his life begins to unravel, he becomes convinced his wife is haunting him.
78/52
USA, 2017
Regional Premiere, 91 min
Director – Alexandre O. Philippe
This masterful documentary focuses on a single aspect of Hitchcock’s PSYCHO to demonstrate the master’s technical ability in storytelling. With expert interviews and rollicking analysis, 78/52 sets a new bar in how to examine film overall.
ANNA AND THE APOCALYPSE
Scotland, 2017
World Premiere, 107 min
Director – John McPhail
Anna’s life is dominated by the typical concerns of her youthful peers until the Christmas season in her small town brings not Santa, but an outbreak of the undead in this genre-mashing holiday horror musical. Yep. Musical.
ANYAB
Egypt, 1981
Repertory, 100 min
Director – Mohammed Shebl
ANYAB (FANGS) is an oddity worth rediscovering! An Egyptian take on THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW, this eye-popping musical of madness manages to cram horror, science fiction and even social commentary together while charming with its outrageous costumes and action.
BLADE OF THE IMMORTAL
Japan, 2017
US Premiere, 141 min
Director – Takashi Miike
Takashi Miike’s 100th journey is an adaptation of the BLADE OF THE IMMORTAL manga. Manji, a samurai who cannot die, crosses paths with Rin Asano, a young girl whose parents were killed. Manji swears to help Rin Asano avenge her parents’ deaths.
BRAWL IN CELL BLOCK 99
USA, 2017
US Premiere, 132 min
Director – S. Craig Zahler
S. Craig Zahler (BONE TOMAHAWK) returns with his sophomore feature, BRAWL IN CELL BLOCK 99. An exhilarating exercise in analog violence, CELL BLOCK follows the brutal exploits of a former boxer who finds himself incarcerated after a drug deal goes wrong. Trapped in a maximum security facility, he must fight to stay alive and to protect those he loves.
COLD HELL
Germany, 2017
US Premiere, 91 min
Director – Stefan Ruzowitzsky
A young Turkish woman living in Vienna feels increasingly lonely after she witnesses a murder and finds herself next on the killer’s agenda in this smart and gritty thriller from the director of ANATOMY and the Oscar-winning THE COUNTERFEITERS.
DAN DREAM
Denmark, 2017
US Premiere, 97 min
Director – Jesper Rofelt
KLOWN duo Casper Christensen and Frank Hvam reunite for a true-life tale of epic failure. Witness the non-arrival of the Danish electric car!
THE ENDLESS
USA, 2017
Texas Premiere, 111 min
Directors – Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead
When brothers Justin and Aaron return to the cult that they escaped from ten years ago, they encounter a web of secrets and mysteries that threatens to tear them apart.
GENERATION B (GENERATIE B)
Belgium, 2017
ep. 1-4 = North American Premiere; ep. 5-6 = World Premiere, 210 min
Director – Pieter Van Hees
The generation gap has never been wider than it is in Pieter Van Hees’ deliriously absurd satire, pitting old generation money against Millennial apathy – and the occasional naked anarchist – following Belgium’s economic collapse.
GERALD’S GAME
USA, 2017
US Premiere, 103 mins
Director – Mike Flanagan
Flanagan unites with master of the macabre Stephen King for his cinematic interpretation of King’s beloved GERALD’S GAME. Starring Carla Gugino and Bruce Greenwood, GERALD’S GAME delivers pitch-perfect performances in a faithful adaptation where the horrors of the mind are much worse than what’s in front of you.
HAGAZUSSA – A HEATHEN’S CURSE
Germany, 2017
World Premiere, 102 min
Director – Lukas Feigelfeld
Set in the 15th Century in the Austrian Alps, Lukas Feigelfeld’s HAGAZUSSA takes us back to a dark period in which even the remotest parts of Europe suffered from the paranoia and superstition of the time.
JAILBREAK
Cambodia, 2017
US Premiere, 92 min
Director – Jimmy Henderson
Cambodia’s traditional martial art of bokator is unleashed in all its bone crunching fury in this action-packed tale of police trapped in the midst of a raging prison riot.
JUVENILE
USA, 2017
World Premiere, 87 min
Director – Bradley Buecker
The emotionally powerful story of Billy, an angry youth who spends his evenings stealing cars with best friend Mikey while attempting to cultivate a stable relationship with his girlfriend Jules.
THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER
Ireland / United Kingdom, 2017
US Premiere, 120 min
Director – Yorgos Lanthimos
The life of a brilliant surgeon is thrown into disarray when his friendship with a bizarre teenager threatens the lives of his entire family. Faced with a frightening choice, the man will be forced to assess all that he’s ever done.
KING COHEN
USA, 2017
US Premiere, 104 min
Director – Steve Mitchell
Featuring interviews from some of the biggest names in genre cinema including Joe Dante, Robert Forster and Fred Williamson, this documentary tells the story of one of the best and hardest working exploitation filmmakers.
MAUS
Spain, 2017
World Premiere, 90 min
Director – Yayo Herrero
Yayo Herrero’s directorial debut is a couple’s nightmare journey into the heart of darkness. A superlative horror parable, this shocking film is an indictment of modern history, war and the difficulties of reconciliation. It is a story for our times.
MY FRIEND DAHMER
USA, 2017
Texas Premiere, 107 min
Director – Marc Meyers
This is the story of Jeffrey Dahmer, a high school loner whose life would shape up to be something far more frightening than anyone could have imagined.
THE ORIGINALS
Egypt, 2017
International Premiere, 125 mins
Director – Marwan Hamed
Samir works for a bank, provides for his ever-demanding family and dreams of being in an Egyptian talent show. When he’s unexpectedly fired, Samir finds himself recruited to be part of a secret society and finds a darker side to life in Egypt.
RON GOOSSENS: LOW-BUDGET STUNTMAN
The Netherlands, 2017
North American Premiere, 78 min
Directors – Steffen Haars & Flip van der Kuil
The latest from the comedic team behind the NEW KIDS films and BROs BEFORE HOs. Ron Goossens is totally shitfaced. Only by working as a movie stuntman and bedding the hottest actress in the Netherlands can Ron save his marriage.
THE SQUARE
Sweden, 2017
US Premiere, 150 min
Director – Ruben Östlund
An art museum director’s life becomes a comedy of errors when trying to put together his latest exhibit in FORCE MAJEURE director Ruben Ostlund’s latest, which won the Palme D’Or at this year’s Cannes.
SUPER DARK TIMES
USA, 2017
Regional Premiere, 102 min
Director – Kevin Phillips
A split-second act of violence forever changes the lives of two ’90s kids. Now they must cope with both the fallout of that moment and the pressures of high school in this clever and bloody coming-of-age thriller.
THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI
USA, 2017
US PREMIERE, 110 min
Director – Martin McDonagh
A grieving mother takes drastic measures in an attempt to catch her daughter’s killer. Challenging the police to solve the case, she posts a series of billboards that threaten the fabric of rural, Missouri.
TIGER GIRL
Germany, 2017
US Premiere, 90 min
Director – Jakob Lass
Failing to crack the ranks as a would-be cop, Maggie begrudgingly settles for a security guard job until she encounters Tiger, a fierce young woman whose rebellious antics leave Maggie questioning which side of the law she truly belongs on.
TOP KNOT DETECTIVE
Australia, 2016
North American Premiere, 87 min
Directors – Aaron McCann & Dominic Pearce
Aliens! Ninjas! Robots! Enormous egos! Get ready to enter the world of TOP KNOT DETECTIVE! Possibly the greatest cult TV series you’ve never heard of, TOP KNOT DETECTIVE and its creator Takashi Tawagoto come to life in this gonzo documentary.
Attend:
2ND HALF Badges for Fantastic Fest 2017 are available for purchase here.

David Letterman returns to television with Netflix talk show

August 8, 2017

David Letterman (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/WireImage for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame)
David Letterman (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/WireImage for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame)

The following is a press release from Netflix:

David Letterman, the longest-serving host in U.S. late night television – the original host of” Late Night”(NBC) and “The Late Show” (CBS) –  is returning to television for a new series for Netflix.

The yet-to-be-named, six-episode series has Letterman combining two interests for which he is renowned: in-depth conversations with extraordinary people, and in-the-field segments expressing his curiosity and humor. In each hour-long episode, Letterman will conduct a long-form conversation with a singular guest – and will also explore topics on his own, away from the studio. The series is set to premiere in 2018.

Said Letterman, “I feel excited and lucky to be working on this project for Netflix. Here’s what I have learned, if you retire to spend more time with your family, check with your family first. Thanks for watching, drive safely.”

“Just meeting David Letterman was a thrill; imagine how exciting it is for me to announce that we will be working together,” said Ted Sarandos, Chief Content Officer, Netflix. “David Letterman is a true television icon, and I can’t wait to see him out in the wild, out from behind the desk and interviewing the people he finds most interesting. We’ll have to see if he keeps the beard.”

The project is being produced by RadicalMedia, the Academy Award® and Emmy-winning company behind Netflix’s What Happened, Miss Simone?, Oh Hello on Broadway and Abstract: The Art of Design, and Letterman’s Worldwide Pants.

In 33 years on late-night television, David Letterman hosted 6,028 episodes of “Late Night” (NBC) and “The Late Show” (CBS), and is the longest-running late-night broadcaster in American history.

As a writer, performer and producer, Letterman is one of the most-nominated individuals in Emmy Award history, with 52 nominations, resulting in 10 wins.  Letterman is also a two-time Peabody-Award winner, a Kennedy Center Honoree, and will receive the Mark Twain Prize in October.

From his roots in comedy, Letterman also became renowned as an interviewer, sharing the stage with U.S. presidents, cabinet officials, Medal of Honor recipients, and virtually every presidential candidate for more than 20 years.  Through his guest interviews, Letterman also brought to light important global issues such as world hunger and climate change.

Letterman announced his departure from The Late Show in 2014, and aired his final episode on May 20, 2015 to an audience of 13.76 million people.

David Letterman resides in New York with his wife Regina and son Harry.

2017 Halloween Horror Nights: Titans of Terror attraction debuts at Universal Studios Hollywood

August 7, 2017

Titans of Terror
Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees and Leatherface (Photo courttesy of Universal Studios Hollywood)

Universal Studios Hollywood unites four slasher film legends—Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, Leatherface and Chucky—in two all-new terrifying “Titans of Terror” experiences as part of this year’s “Halloween Horror Nights” event which kicks off Friday, September 15, 2017.

In the new “Titans of Terror” maze, guests will fall victim to the silver screen’s most deplorable killers whose affinity for bladed weapons redefined the horror movie genre as slasher films: Leatherface (“The Texas Chainsaw Massacre”) wielding his iconic chainsaw, Jason Voorhees (“Friday the 13th”) brandishing his relentless machete, and Freddy Krueger (“A Nightmare on Elm Street”) swiping his trademark glove armed with razor blades. The new maze will be an assault on guests’ sensibilities as they descend into the forbidden realms of these horror icons.

Taking terror to an unspeakable level of bloodcurdling screams, the “Titans of Terror Tram Hosted by Chucky” will transport guests into a nightmare of carnage pitting guests against these four modern horror icons, this time led by infamous serial killer doll Chucky (“Child’s Play” franchise). With his faithful army of degenerate chainsaw-wielding Good Guy Dolls, Chucky will unleash havoc upon guests as they navigate a portion of the world-famous backlot.

Further “Terror Tram” encounters will include Jason Voorhees (“Friday the 13th”) at the Crystal Lake Motel where he slaughters newly arrived camp counselors; an ominous confrontation with Freddy Krueger (“A Nightmare on Elm Street”) who takes his ultimate revenge on the town of Springwood; and a final foray through the barn from “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” where Leatherface and the Sawyer family butcher victims for their cannibal cuisine.

Unique to Universal Studios Hollywood, the “Terror Tram” enables “Halloween Horror Nights” guests to walk along an area of the famed movie and television studio, where such sets as the Psycho House and the Bates Motel from Alfred Hitchcock’s classic thriller, and Steven Spielberg’s “War of the Worlds,” are located.

“Halloween Horror Nights” at Universal Studios Hollywood brings together the sickest minds in horror to immerse guests in a living, breathing, three-dimensional world of terror. Featuring an all-new slate of unrivaled film production quality mazes and frightful scare zones, “Halloween Horror Nights” will taunt, terrorize and torment guests with spine-chilling haunted attractions as part of Southern California’s most extreme Halloween experience.

Updates on “Halloween Horror Nights” at Universal Studios Hollywood are available online at HalloweenHorrorNights.com/Hollywood and on Facebook at: “Halloween Horror Nights – Hollywood,” Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter at @HorrorNights as Creative Director John Murdy reveals a running chronicle of exclusive information. Watch videos on Halloween Horror Nights YouTube and join the conversation using #UniversalHHN.

Bobby Flay and Damaris Phillips team up for ‘The Bobby and Damaris Show’

August 7, 2017

Bobby Flay and Damaris Phlliips
Bobby Flay (pictured at left) and Damaris Phillips (pictured at right) (Photos courtesy of Food Network)

The following is a press release from Food Network:

When Bobby Flay isn’t cooking in one of his restaurants, he is known for hosting some of the best weekend gatherings, cooking and feeding friends who may be visiting for few days or just stopping by to say hello.  This September, Bobby opens his home to viewers and, along with his friend Damaris Phillips, the two cook together and chat up a storm in the new series “The Bobby and Damaris Show,” premiering Sunday, September 3 at 12:30pm ET/PT on Food Network. The two met when Bobby hosted and Damaris won Food Network Star season nine, and neither are ever at a loss for words when talking about their passion for food, American and Southern classics, as well as great cocktails.  Bobby brings his chef sensibility, while Damaris is the self-proclaimed “food geek” and culinary instructor – and she’s not afraid to school her once-mentor and keep him current on the latest trends.  With episode themes from grilling and game day to a fall apple feast, this culinary duo is tops in talking food, testing quirky ideas and entertaining friends who stop by, including Ina Garten, Alex Guarnaschelli and Katie Lee.

“Bobby says he knew from the moment he met Damaris on Food Network Star that they were going to be friends – and their fun-filled banter and good-natured laughs are sure to entertain and even have viewers asking how they can score their own invitation,” said Courtney White, Senior Vice President, Programming, Scripps Networks Interactive. “Our audience will feel like they are spending a casual afternoon with friends, great food and conversation.”

The series kicks off with a grilling-themed episode, because nobody is more obsessed with grilling than Bobby and Damaris loves a food backyard bbq.  Before turning up the heat, Damaris mixes a cool Mango Bellini as the two share their secrets to great backyard entertaining.  Then they head to Bobby’s outdoor kitchen where he fires up the coals to make Mediterranean Grilled Chicken with Green Olive Salsa Verde and Grilled Potatoes with Smoked Paprika Vinaigrette, and Damaris wraps up with a sweet spin on grilling with her Grilled Citrus Icebox Pie.  Upcoming episode themes include comfort food, casseroles and game day.

Viewers can learn more about the hosts and get the featured recipes at FoodNetwork.com/BobbyandDamarisShow.  Join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #BobbyandDamarisShow.

2017 Teen Choice Awards: Miley Cyrus to receive Ultimate Choice Award; Shawn Mendes and other celebrity guest appearances announced

August 4, 2017

Miley Cyrus
Miley Cyrus (Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images via ABC)

The following is a press release from Fox:

Singer/songwriter, actress, artist, philanthropist and 18-time Teen Choice winner Miley Cyrus will accept the show’s highest honor, the Ultimate Choice Award, for her involvement in Teen Choice for more than a decade. Cyrus is one of six artists/performers in Teen Choice history to be honored with this award and is nominated for four additional Teen Choice awards this year. The star-studded two-hour event airs Sunday, August 13 (8:00-10:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed) on Fox.

Additionally, the cast from the Teen Choice-nominated Fox show “Star” – Jude Demorest, Ryan Destiny (nominated individually for Choice Breakout TV Star) and Brittany O’Grady – are set to perform the world premiere of “Ain’t Thinkin Bout You,” from the show’s upcoming second season, premiering Wednesday, September 27 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on Fox.

Also, Kaitlin Olson, star of Fox’s “The Mick”; and Adam Scott and Craig Robinson, stars of Fox’s new comedy “Ghosted” are set to appear, as well as singer/songwriter Shawn Mendes, singer/songwriter Camila Cabello, actor/writer Kumail Nanjiani (“The Big Sick”) and YouTube star Liza Koshy.

As previously announced, performances include Louis Tomlinson and Bebe Rexha; Clean Bandit with Zara Larsson; an opening number featuring KYLE, Lil Yachty and Rita Ora; hip-hop duo Rae Sremmurd; and French Montana, featuring Swae Lee with Uganda’s Triplets Ghetto Kids. Maroon 5 is confirmed to receive the highly coveted “Decade Award,” joining previously announced celebrities, including Ed Sheeran, Zendaya, Millie Bobby Brown, Gal Gadot, Tyler Hoechlin, Grant Gustin, Melissa Benoist, Olivia Munn, Bella Thorne, Katherine Langford, Maddie Ziegler, Grace Vanderwaal and Marshmello.

Tickets for Teen Choice 2017 at the Galen Center in Los Angeles are now on sale to the general public at galentix.com/.

“Like” Teen Choice 2017 on Facebook at facebook.com/TeenChoiceAwards. Follow the action on Twitter @TeenChoiceFox and join the discussion at #teenchoice. See photos and videos on Instagram by following @teenchoicefox.

Rolling Stones ‘Sticky Fingers’ 2015 Los Angeles concert gets home-video release

August 3, 2017

"The Rolling Stones' From The Vault: Sticky Fingers: Live At The Fonda Theatre 2015" (Photo courtesy of Eagle Rock Entertainment)
“The Rolling Stones’ From The Vault: Sticky Fingers: Live At The Fonda Theatre 2015” (Photo courtesy of Eagle Rock Entertainment)

The following is a press release from Eagle Rock Entertainment:

On September 29, 2017, Eagle Rock Entertainment will unveil The Rolling Stones’ From The Vault: Sticky Fingers: Live At The Fonda Theatre 2015 on DVD+CD, Blu-ray+CD, DVD+3LP, and digital formats [MSRP $21.98 DVD+CD, $26.98 Blu-ray+CD, $49.98 DVD+3LP] This is the fifth release “From The Vault”, a series of live concerts from The Rolling Stones archive which are being officially released for the first time.

This latest addition to the acclaimed “From The Vault” series captures a truly unique event in the storied history of The Rolling Stones. On May 20, 2015 at the Fonda Theatre in Hollywood, California, the band performed the entire Sticky Fingers album live in concert for the first (and so far only time) in their career. The show celebrated the reissue of the Sticky Fingers album and was the opening night of The Rolling Stones’ North American Zip Code Tour that would run over the next two months. The intimate setting of the Fonda Theatre was in contrast to the huge stadiums in which the band would perform for the rest of the tour and made this an incredibly special occasion for those fans lucky enough to get a ticket. This incredible release includes Stones classics like “Brown Sugar”, “Wild Horses”, “Start Me Up”, “Jumpin’ Jack Flash”, “Bitch”, “Dead Flowers”, “When The Whip Comes Down”, and more.

The DVD & Blu-ray include interviews with the band members intercut with full-length performances. The CD and 3LP feature the full show as performed on the night. As Bonus Features, the DVD & Blu-ray include tracks cut from the concert film: “All Down The Line”, “When The Whip Comes Down”, and “I Can’t Turn You Loose”.

From The Vault: Sticky Fingers Live At The Fonda Theatre 2015 is a full-blooded interpretation of one of The Rolling Stones’ most loved works. Combined with the bonus interviews, it proves an incredible experience for any Stones fan.

Pre-order on Amazon:
DVD+CD: http://amzn.to/2vwjCEe
Blu-ray+CD: http://amzn.to/2u45yNH
DVD+3LP: http://amzn.to/2v1XQ85

TRACK LISTING:
DVD:
1) Start Me Up
2) Sway
3) Dead Flowers
4) Wild Horses
5) Sister Morphine
6) You Gotta Move
7) Bitch
8) Can’t You Hear Me Knocking
9) I Got The Blues
10) Moonlight Mile
11) Brown Sugar
12) Rock Me Baby
13) Jumpin’ Jack Flash

Bonus tracks:
1) All Down The Line
2) When The Whip Comes Down
3) I Can’t Turn You Loose

CD:
1) Start Me Up
2) When The Whip Comes Down
3) All Down The Line
4) Sway
5) Dead Flowers
6) Wild Horses
7) Sister Morphine
8) You Gotta Move
9) Bitch
10) Can’t You Hear Me Knocking
11) I Got The BlueS
12) Moonlight Mile
13) Brown Sugar
14) Rock Me Baby
15) Jumpin’ Jack Flash
16) I Can’t Turn You Loose

3LP
Side A:
1) Start Me Up
2) When The Whip Comes Down
3) All Down The Line

Side B:
1) Sway
2) Dead Flowers
3) Wild Horses

Side C:
1) Sister Morphine
2) You Gotta Move
3) Bitch

Side D:
1) Can’t You Hear Me Knocking
2) I Got The Blues

Side E:
1) Moonlight Mile
2) Brown Sugar

Side F:
1) Rock Me Baby
2) Jumpin’ Jack Flash
3) I Can’t Turn You Loose

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