Avengers: Infinity War, the third installment in the “Avengers” franchise and 19th Marvel Studios film to date, marks the 10-year anniversary of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which began with the release of “Iron Man” in 2008. Assembling a team from every Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise ever, the Avengers align in solidarity attempting to defeat the powerful Thanos (James Brolin) before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe.Read More
Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a huge child at heart. It's a characteristic handed down from my beautiful, playful mother. A quality that allows me to have an open heart and mind when watching projects meant to tap into one's inner child.
One of my favorite films of all time is The Wizard of Oz. I mean who doesn't love that moment when Dorothy realizes what she searched for in Oz was inside her all the time? Well, what The Wizard of Oz did for me is what A Wrinkle in Time will do for this new generation of young people.
Based on the popular novel by Madeline L'Engle, A Wrinkle in Time takes us on the journey of Meg (Storm Reid) and her little brother Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe) as they 'tesseract' through time to bring back their scientist Dad (Chris Pine), who is being held captive by the 'it.'Read More
Black Panther is hands down the best film in the Marvel Franchise!!! Why? Black Panther is on the road to do for Marvel what The Lion King did for Disney. The Lion King had Mufasa, Simba and The Pridelands...Black Panther has Wakanda, King T'Challa, Nakia and Killmonger. Black Panther also manages to show tender young love between a man and a woman, a man and his parents and unflinching love for one's country no matter what the sacrifice.Read More
Its' been a minutes since we have seen Captain Jack Sparrow or the film franchise that was spawn from a Disneyland ride in 2003. Now, 14 years later, if you love the "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise, you won't be disappointed with "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales". Back in his Oscar nominated, unforgettable role of Captain Jack Sparrow, actor Johnny Depp performs this character as though he were a second skin. It's so organically natural for him and the jokes never cease to amuse.Read More
In celebration of Earth Day, DisneyNature releases "Born In China." This remarkable documentary is narrated by John Krasinski and takes audiences on a breathtaking journey into the wilds of China.
Directed by Chinese filmmaker Lu Chuan, produced by Disney’s Roy Conli and renowned nature filmmakers Brian Leith and Phil Chapman, "Born In China" shows an authentic side of nature in China that global audiences have never seen before,” says director Lu Chuan. “These animals are metaphors. They give birth, like we do and do their best to raise their cubs, like we do. They succeed and they fail. Their drive to do what is best for their families resonates with all of us.”Read More
Love and stories about love never go out of style. These types of stories make us sentimental, long for a lost love or a love that was never to be realized. Disney's Beauty and Beast stays true to form with this latest incarnation of "a tale as old as time"!Read More
Benedict Cumberbatch is exchanging those serious Oscar nominated roles like Alan Turing in The Imitation Game and the BBC's Sherlock for neurosurgeon turned sorcerer in Marvel's Doctor Strange.
This latest Marvel installment may be just what the franchise needs to reinvigorate itself. I spent a majority of this film with my mouth dropped from witnessing the most amazingly eye-twisting visual special effects I have ever seen. They were simply marvelous, yet mind-bending to watch.
Of course, I would be remiss in not addressing the controversy that has swirled around the casting of Tilda Swinton as The Ancient One, a role depicted in the comic as one of Asian descent.
While the studio, the writers, director Scott Derrickson and even Swinton herself have spoken out about the upcoming changes in the film, it continues to be a topic of discussion among many.
In a recent interview with Out, the actress once again addresses the controversy surrounding her character and states that the Ancient One was never written as a Tibetan man, as portrayed in the comics.
“There is little for me to add except to say that anyone speaking up for a greater accuracy in the representation of the diversity of the world we live in has me right beside them,” she says. “As someone who has worked from the beginning as an artist within a queer aesthetic, the urgency of that voice is always going to be welcome.”
It goes without saying that clearly the Asian community is sick of exclusion, as are people of color, Latinos and Native Americans. Who can forget not too long ago the casting of Jennifer Lawrence as Catniss in The Hunger Games franchise, when in the book Catniss is Native American. One of these days, Hollywood will get it right.
Anywhoo, back to Doctor Strange. I loved it! The cinematic aesthetic is off the charts thanks to Ben Davis and Scott Derrickson. The action keeps you engaged to the point when the film is over...you are totally not ready for it to end.
Both McAdams and Cumberbatch reached into their lighter side to make Christine and Stephen engaging, charming and comedic without being over the top. It was wonderful to see Chiwetel Ejiofor cross over to the dark side (smelling a sequel) and watch him leap into his superhero lane making a departure from his more serious work as well. Controversy aside, Tilda Swinton is fantastic as The Ancient One. Kinda hate that she...oops don't want it spoil it for you guys:)
However, the real star of this film was the "cloak of levitation". It truly was a character all unto itself without skipping a beat.
Marvel really out did itself on this one. The credits for the digital crew and special effects listed at least more than 100 people for everything ranging from CGI to Sound. Bravo! Can't wait for the sequel!!
Marvel Studios' Doctor Strange opens in theaters Friday, November 4th!
Click HERE to watch the trailer
Disney•Pixar’s first special for television, “Toy Story OF TERROR!,” a spooky tale featuring all of your favorite characters from the “Toy Story” films, airs WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 19 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT), on ABC.Read More
Enter Phiona Mutesi, a young girl from the streets of Kampala, Uganda whose world rapidly changes when she is introduced to the game of chess by soccer coach and former missionary Robert Katende. As a result, she is encouraged to pursue her dream of becoming an international chess champion. Queen of Katwe is Phiona's story of discovery, love, sacrifice and developing the heart of a lion king while accomplishing a feat even she thought was impossible.Read More
Stedman’s “The Light Between Oceans” was published in the U.S. in July 2012. Immediately embraced by readers and critics alike, it landed on both The New York Times and USA Today’s bestseller lists, as well as, Amazon’s Best Book of the Month for August of that year. Since then, it has been translated into over 35 languages.Read More
This just in...via Deadline.com Ballet star Misty Copeland just unveiled that she is joining the cast of Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms, the Lasse Hallstrom-directed pic based on the famed story. The live-action pic is being penned by Ashleigh Powell. Copeland will play the lead ballerina role in the film’s sole dance sequence.Read More
The very time I became aware of autism, what it was and how it manifests was when I was in rehearsal for the 1st National tour of "The Who's Tommy". You see the character of "Tommy" was a high functioning autistic child who becomes a rock star. The creative team had professionals come in and tell us all about it, so that onstage our relationship with Tommy would be authentic and real.
About a year ago, I was chatting with my old friend Jonathan Freeman. He began telling me about a book by Ron Suskind called Life Animated and about his kid named Owen who was autistic. He revealed that Owen broke out of his autistic prison through watching Disney animated films. Now, this was fascinating, because both Jonathan and myself have a Disney connection. I played Shenzi in Los Angeles production of "The Lion King" for three years and Jonathan is the voice of "Jafar" in the Disney animated feature "Aladdin" and performs this role eight times a week currently on Broadway.
As life works, while at Sundance 2016, I found out Owen Suskind is now the subject of a documentary directed by Roger Ross Williams. When I tell you, I spent 90 minutes doing the ugly cry while trying to laugh...I really do not exaggerate!
At three-years old, Owen Suskind began speaking gibberish. After taking him to numerous medical professionals, he was diagnosed autistic. For those of you who don't know what that means, it simply means that these kids have a brain that is overly stimulated. They are brutally honest and don't know what lying or being polite is. They simply live in the moment...whatever that moment happens to be.
After one year of complete silence while watching "The Little Mermaid", Owen uttered what his parents Cornelia and Ron understood as "juicer voss". Owen was trying to say "just your voice" ( a line from the character Ursula). Now, as a 23-year old adult, Owen has transitioned into adult assisted living, had his heart-broken for the first time and secured employment at a local movie theater.
Life, Animated is one of the most inspiring, heartwarming and heartbreaking films I have seen in quite some time. It was truly a reality check. It reminded me that just when you think your life sucks, there is always someone else who has it just a little harder.
I wonder what Walt Disney would think about his films being the catalyst for a child who most people wrote off and were ready to throw in the towel on. Ron and Cornelia Suskind and their other son Walter NEVER gave up on Owen and continue to make his life as normal and easy-going as possible.
While saying goodbye to Jonathan, Owen and his family popped by and when we asked if he was tired of being a movie star, he simply replied "Yes, it will be nice to get back to me". One of my favorite moments of the film was having Gilbert Godfried pop by Owens' Disney Club and do a live reading of Aladdin for all the members along with Jonathan.
Thank you Jonathan for bringing Owen and his beautiful family to my attention. You and them have TRULY changed my life and mindset forever.
Life Animated opened in theaters on July 1st and remember you heard it here first...it will definitely be on the short list for the Oscars in 2017.