MOVIE CHEAT SHEET: Weinstein career pulped
Harvey Weinstein produced numerous blockbusters, including Pulp Fiction, now in the wake of a lurid sex scandal it looks like his career is over.
BRIAN GASPAREK/ 24 HOURS
THE BIG STORY: Goodbye TWC?
Over the past week, Harvey Weinstein has been exposed as a piece of human garbage for his decades of alleged (and admitted) sexual harassment and aggressive behaviour towards a growing list of women in Hollywood, including actresses like Angelina Jolie, Ashley Judd and Gwyneth Paltrow. (Weinstein denies raping anyone, however, and that all sex was consensual to his knowledge.) Apart from Harvey's obvious personal and professional demise, it looks like The Weinstein Company could be toast, too. With information leaking that TWC chairman Bob Weinstein and TWC COO David Glasser both likely knew about Harvey's despicable behaviour (um, duh) and that several TWC executives actually helped set up Harvey's "business meetings" with some of these women, nobody in Hollywood wants to be associated with the company. And it's looking like TWC's desperate attempt to rename itself and to yank its credits from several upcoming productions won't be enough to save its tarnished reputation.
Networks and creative partners are already trying to distance themselves from TWC altogether. Outlets like Amazon that have production deals in place with TWC are trying to buy out and finance the productions themselves, so they no longer have any creative ties with the besmirched company. This, combined with a constantly slumping box office could mean that winter is coming for TWC...and quickly. Let's not forget about how Harvey's despicable behaviour directly affects us as movie fans. TWC has produced a ton of Oscar-winning, diverse and critically lauded independent flicks that were otherwise lacking in Hollywood. If TWC croaks, we better hope that another studio can pick up their slack.
Rock out of touch?
I love The Rock, but could he actually be getting carried away with thinking the Fast & Furious franchise is all about him (see Reel Talk below)? When discussing his Fast spinoff this week (which is delaying Fast 9 by a whole year), The Rock said, "I want to use my spinoff platform to create new characters that fans will ultimately love to have fun with in multiple chapters and platforms. Film, TV, digital, virtual reality etc., the more opportunities we can create the better for the fans. Smart business. Let's have some fun and to quote Hobbs the boss, if you don't like it, we're happy to beat that a-like a Cherokee drum." Cool. But what about your original Fast & Furious castmates that are waiting to shoot another film? Don't forget about Dom and the familia, Dwayne.
Halloween gets wise
It's nice to see that David Gordon Green and Danny McBride's 2018 Halloween reboot/sequel has its head screwed on correctly. In addition to wisely bringing back Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode and casting Judy Greer as her daughter, the film is taking a smart stance in regards to all of the god-awful sequels (and terrible Rob Zombie remakes) that were produced post-1978. According to creator John Carpenter, the new Halloween "picks up after the first one, and it pretends that none of the other [sequels] were made." Brilliant call. Completely repress the stinkers. I really hope this flick will be great. (Rumours is Jamie Lee Curtis is coming back to be killed off, a la Harrison Ford in Star Wars.)
Disney hacks Jack
Sad news, Disney lovers. Gigantic, The Mouse's take on Jack and the Beanstalk, due out in 2020, has officially been scrapped mid-development. Word has it that the film doesn't meet Disney's quality standards. According to Walt Disney Animation Group president Ed Catmull, "sometimes, no matter how much we love an idea or how much heart goes into it, we find that it just isn't working." Bummer. We'll have to seek comfort in the other 100 Disney movies headed our way. Rocky to helm Creed 2 Ryan Coogler's Creed was a surprisingly solid film, but unfortunately for us, the director has moved on to richer things (Black Panther) and won't be helming the sequel. Instead, his official replacement is Sylvester Stallone. Oh. Is anyone else underwhelmed? I know Sly wrote and directed the majority of the Rocky franchise (which ranged from mediocre to decent), but this just feels like a dated and uninspired choice.
BEST AND WORST IN THEATRES:
Jackie gets badass: The Foreigner Who would have thought that at 63, Jackie Chan could still portray a legit badass? (Especially after all those garbage comedies.) Not me. Director Martin Campbell is being praised for rejuvenating the aging action star, and flipping him into a sombre, stone cold vengeance-seeker. Critics are calling this take on Stephen Leather's The Chinaman a strong action thriller. Think of it as a heavier, politically driven Taken. If action is your beat, The Foreigner is your flick this weekend.
Goofy spooks: Happy Death Day If you choose to see a B-horror flick called Happy Death Day, you know exactly what you're getting. It's going to be a campy, corny, poorly acted affair, full of comically cheap scares. And that's exactly what critics are saying about this blood-soaked take on Groundhog Day. But that's not a bad thing if you're looking for some light, laughable pre-Halloween fun.
REEL TALK: "You know pushing our release date back, it's only happened one time in the history of The Fast and the Furious. It's when we lost our brother Paul Walker...so what's the reason we're pushing the release date back now? [The Rock's Fast & Furious spin-off.] I just got a problem with Dwayne when it appears he's being selfish. It appears that he's so focused on furthering his own selfinterest; he's making decisions from the seat that he's sitting." - Tyrese Gibson venting about how The Rock's Fast & Furious spin-off is delaying the release of Fast 9 by an entire year.