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Ava DuVernay Will NOT Be Directing Black Panther, According to Ava DuVernay

When Marvel announced several months ago that it was courting Ava DuVernay to helm one of its upcoming features, particularly Black Panther, the internet went nuts. DuVernay would have been the first black female to direct a Marvel movie (she was already the first black female filmmaker to be nominated for Best Director at the Golden Globes, for her acclaimed Selma). Also, DuVernay directing a Marvel movie would’ve been the coolest, and arguably the most interesting thing to happen to a Marvel movie in a long time — maybe ever. But there was never any confirmation, and for months rumors eddied around the internet. Now we finally have legitimate confirmation from DuVernay herself, via an interview with Essence

Jackie & Ryan Is Like Nicholas Sparks-Lite

Could Jackie and Ryan even be called a movie? And does it really matter? This underdeveloped romance seems to be lacking an act, or two, or maybe even three. But it’s filled with such great music that the emotions are there regardless. Not unlike Once, the movie itself feels like an excuse for the music. And as with Once, that’s not always a bad thing.


  • Posted 7/3/15 at 3:02 PM
  • Movies

New Video Shows Nic Cage as '90s Superman

A long time ago, in the ’90s, filmmaker Tim Burton infamously planned on a making a Superman movie starring one Nicolas Cage. At the time, Burton had yet to devolve into a parody of himself, and Cage… well, at that point in his career he was still known more as an actor than a recurring internet meme. The film, which never took off, was called Superman Lives, and you can just imagine the bizarre iteration of the Man of Steel that Burton and Cage could’ve conjured. A new documentary chronicling the film’s failure called The Death of Superman Lives (which is a most excellent title) is coming out July 9, and courtesy of the Los Angeles Times, you can now watch a clip from the documentary showing the "holy grail" footage of Cage's costume test:

Zarafa is Wise and Elegant, for Kids and Adults

A sweet and sad African adventure with some admirably dark overtones, Zarafa is a Belgian animated film being released Stateside with English subtitles by GKids, the same company that has brought us extraordinary films like Ernest & Celestine and The Tale of Princess Kaguya. (They’re also the folks responsible for the wonderful New York International Children’s Film Festival, which I wrote about last year.) GKids has done an admirable job of bringing to the U.S. youth-oriented films, usually animated, that tackle potentially unsettling, grown-up issues. These tend to be limited releases, often subtitled and screening in small theaters – a far cry from the behemoths of Pixar and Dreamworks. It’s a curious, maybe even crazy idea: bringing together children’s movies and the arthouse. But over the past few years it’s paid some wonderful dividends. Zarafa, which was originally released in Europe in 2012, is one of them.


Eminem and Gwen Stefani Did a Song Together, So You Should Probably Give It a Whirl

In weird pairings you thought you didn't need: Eminem and Gwen Stefani on Thursday hopped into a time machine set for the early aughts to whip up a new single, "Kings Never Die." The Southpaw song is as poppy as it is rappy — why, yes, that is Em sing-rapping! It almost has a Gym Class Heroes, or even Fall Out Boy, feel to it, thanks to the guitar-heavy spitting. (Who knows, maybe Em is thinking about forming a band?) The track also does a very, very good job of kvetching about the internet and sounding grumpy, all while making it clear Gwen and Em are still musical kings. It's a good time, but it's a weird, nostalgic good time. Aside from the interesting sound, it's fairly classic Em: lyrical intensity; complex, staccato rhymes; and a syncopated but unrelenting flow. (King alert, king alert.) The rapper has been heavily involved with Southpaw's soundtrack, which comes out July 24. The movie's out the same day.

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Conan Shows the Best Way to Crash a Magic Mike Party

Excited for Magic Mike XXL this weekend? Probably not as much as Conan and his gal pals were here. It was an especially big night for the late-night host, who can now say he has humped the floor, little-spooned with a MMXXL cast member, and scarred an innocent little kid's life (probably his assistant's too).

Michael Douglas Would Love to Join the Avengers

Michael Douglas has been a part of movie history for most of his working life, but even at age 70 he's still open to new chapters. When we chatted with him earlier this week at the Los Angeles world premiere of his new Marvel movie Ant-Man, Douglas raved about the craft that went into it. "It's incredible," he said, "when you have a break from working with the first unit, which is the actors, and you get to go watch the second unit with the stuntmen or the third unit with the special effects or the fourth unit, which is the ant’s point of view — the macro photography, and you see how they put it all together."

In fact, now that his character Hank Pym has been added to the Marvel cinematic universe, Douglas wouldn't mind popping up in one of the studio's even bigger films. "I’ll go anywhere they want me to," he told us. "I like this Marvel family; it’s a lovely group. Their track record’s impeccable — I mean, that’s 12 in a row, right? Who’s done that?"

Rory Gilmore and Izzie Stevens Are Getting Married in a Movie: Your Mid-2000s Slash Fiction Came True!

May we introduce you to Jenny's Wedding. It comes out in theaters on July 31 and VOD on August 1. The dream of the 2000s is alive in independent cinema. 

Your First Look at Deadpool and His Guns

Lots of superheroes explicitly don’t use guns, but not Deadpool. Deadpool uses guns. And with the first official photo from the movie, Ryan Reynolds and the people behind the hard-R Deadpool movie wanted to remind everyone of exactly that. What is he doing with the guns? By the looks of it, shooting one man and one old car. He's not called Alivepool for a reason.

Winehouse Documentary Amy Reveals the Lethal Effects of Celebrity

The Amy Winehouse documentary Amy is alternately thrilling and devastating, throwing you back and forth until the devastation takes over and you spend the last hour watching the most supernaturally gifted vocalist of her generation chase and find oblivion. Directed by Asif Kapadia, who had amazing access to Winehouse’s family and friends, Amy raises a question that’s common to downward-spiral docs: Is it a profile or an autopsy?

Kapadia doesn’t exactly point fingers — it’s more of a subtle nod. »

  • Posted 7/1/15 at 10:25 PM
  • Teasers

London Has Fallen Teaser: Get Ready for Gerard Butler and Explosions

Remember Olympus Has Fallen? Okay, well, now bad things are happening in London. This is what it's going to look like: explosions, Gerard Butler, more explosions, more Gerard Butler, maybe a little Morgan Freeman, more explosions, and then a creepy, Avengers-ified version of "London Bridge." Good news: Everything looks sufficiently cool and badass. (Bad news: The timing of this teaser was neither cool nor badass.) You'll be able to catch all the Butler action early next year.

Paul Thomas Anderson Will Write — and Possibly Direct — Robert Downey Jr.’s Pinocchio

Paul Thomas Anderson just threw his fans a major curveball: The acclaimed director is set to write the live-action Pinocchio starring Robert Downey Jr., The Hollywood Reporter reports. Anderson, whose last project was 2014's Inherent Vice, is also in talks to direct. (For reference, Anderson has both written and directed all seven of his films.) Downey Jr. will reportedly play the woodcarver Gepetto. Now if he can just get Joaquin Phoenix to play Pinocchio, all will be right in Paul Thomas Anderson's world.

Joe Manganiello Suffered for Your Pleasure in Magic Mike XXL: ‘Strippin’ Ain’t Easy’

Several of the supporting actors from the first Magic Mike movie have opted not to return for the sequel, but the ones who did have really made the most of it — none more than Joe Manganiello. His character Big Dick Richie was just an overmuscled sight-gag in Steven Soderbergh's original flick, but in Magic Mike XXL (out today), Manganiello practically becomes the co-lead of the movie, flexing and strutting on a Florida road-trip with Mike (Channing Tatum) and his male-stripper pals. The True Blood alum also gets the movie's best scene, a riotous mini-mart sequence where Richie improvises a sensual, self-parodying routine to one of the most famous boy-band songs ever. Magnaniello hopped on the phone with Vulture recently to discuss how that sequence came about, his thoughts on onscreen nudity, and the freak injury that almost cut his stripping time short.

"It was excruciating." »

Hey, What Do Ya Know, Michael Fassbender Actually Seems Like an All Right Steve Jobs

We've poked plenty of fun at Aaron Sorkin's Steve Jobs biopic over the years, but judging from this first trailer, it actually seems like it might be pretty good. Sorkin looks to be back in Good Sorkin mode; Seth Rogen is gunning for those Best Supporting noms; and, accent issues aside, Michael Fassbender — the third choice for the role, after Leo DiCaprio and Christian Bale dropped out — makes a fine Steve Jobs. Cast a Jobs you love, and you'll never work a day in your life.

Julia Roberts Has a Mother’s Day Movie Up Her Sleeve

Deadline reports that Julia Roberts is set to star in a self-explanatory movie called Mother's Day, about, yeah, a lot of different mom stories. Think of it as the Traffic of matriarch movies. Probable mamas Jennifer Aniston and Kate Hudson, along with improbable mama Jason Sudeikis (who will hopefully play a meta curmudgeon upset he isn't in Father's Day), might be in on this, too. Garry Marshall will direct from Anya Kochoff-Romano and Lily Hollander's script, à la holiday pics New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day. Always a treat.

Michael B. Jordan Is Truly a Beast in the Creed Trailer

The project of Ryan Coogler's dreams is on the way, and here are roughly three minutes of it to show you just how dreamy it is. As fate (or Hollywood) would have it, Apollo Creed gave birth to something fierce (Michael B. Jordan). That something wants to wreck people in the boxing ring — all while fighting for something bigger than victory. (As far as trailers go, this really is almost too good. It's almost like the old Rocky movies got the same badass update as the Mad Max series. The training montage will even be updated to feature motorcycles and quads ... neat!) You can begin your Jake Gyllenhaal–vs.–Michael B. Jordan debates now, and then catch Creed on November 25.

The Trailer for Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Edward Snowden Movie Is Basically Just Snowden’s LinkedIn Profile

Oliver Stone's Edward Snowden biopic only finished shooting a few weeks ago, so it makes sense that there wouldn't be a whole lot of edited footage to cobble together for this first trailer. In its place, we've got a helpful rundown of Snowden's résumé because, hey, the dude's been out of a job for two years now.

How Well Do You Know Channing Tatum’s Abs?

Sure, people go see Channing Tatum in movies because he is funny and a solid actor, but that's never the first reason. No, Priority No. 1 is that at some point, for some reason, he'll take his shirt off. Which is why, with Magic Mike XXL, a movie all about the moment he takes his shirt off, coming out this week, Vulture wanted to test how well you know his work — and by work, we mean his abs. In the quiz below, you will be shown ten shots of Tatum's abs, and you'll have to guess which movie, TV show, or advertisement they appear in. Good luck and you're welcome!

Julia Roberts, Nicole Kidman, and Chiwetel Ejiofor Get Their Murder-Mystery On in The Secret in Their Eyes Trailer

In 2010, Juan José Campanella's El Secreto de sus Ojos won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film. But because Hollywood can't leave a good thing alone, it's now getting an English-language remake directed by Billy Ray. The thriller stars Julia Roberts, an FBI investigator whose teenage daughter turns up dead in a Dumpster. And when Nicole Kidman, the district attorney, can't build a strong enough case against the primary suspect, Roberts's co-worker and close friend, played by Chiwetel Ejiofor, goes on a 13-year manhunt for the guy they let walk. Just when they think they've found him and can reopen the case, Roberts goes all The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo to exact "justice" (read: revenge). The Secret in Their Eyes opens October 23.

The Rewriting of David Foster Wallace

Nobody owns David Foster Wallace anymore. In the seven years since his suicide, he’s slipped out of the hands of those who knew him, and those who read him in his lifetime, and into the cultural maelstrom, which has flattened him. He has become a character, an icon, and in some circles a saint. A writer who courted contradiction and paradox, who could come on as a curmudgeon and a scold, who emerged from an avant-garde tradition and never retreated into conventional realism, he has been reduced to a wisdom-dispensing sage on the one hand and shorthand for the Writer As Tortured Soul on the other. 

For someone who has long loved Wallace’s writing, as I have, one of the ironies of this shift is that, whether he intended to or not, Wallace started the process himself. First, he embarked on a series of publicity campaigns in which he performed his self-conscious disdain and fear of publicity campaigns, a martyr to the market culture and entertainment industry he was satirizing in his books. Then there was a treacly commencement speech at Kenyon College in 2005 that became a viral sensation and later, a few months after his death, a cute, one-sentence-per-page inspirational pamphlet, This Is Water: Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion, About Living a Compassionate Life. And now comes a bromantic biopic, The End of the Tour, starring Jason Segel as Wallace and Jesse Eisenberg as David Lipsky, the novelist Rolling Stone sent to write a (later abandoned) profile of Wallace in 1996. The movie’s theme is the bullshit-ness of literary fame — which Wallace, the permanently unsatisfied overachiever, nonetheless craved (not to mention it might get him laid, which he also thought would be a phony achievement). The movie is based on Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, the book of transcripts Lipsky published in 2010. And since much of its dialogue is transferred directly from the tapes, it does have a claim on the authentic Wallace.

None of this is entirely new; Wallace has always been an unstable commodity. »