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Bohemian Rhapsody Editor Drops F-Bomb Over Viral Mocked Scene

Although it has a bevy of awards to its name and made almost $1 billion at the box office, Bohemian Rhapsody has faced quite a bit of criticism. The aspect of the film that has perhaps received the most criticism is the editing, particularly in the scene where Queen first meets manager John Reid, played by Mr. Chaos is a Ladder himself, Aidan Gillen. And that scene has been held up as evidence that Bohemian Rhapsody did not deserve all of its many accolades.

The scene, which was the subject of a viral video that garnered millions of views, was mocked for the seemingly haphazard way it was edited– with extremely rapid and jarring cuts. The film’s editor (and composer) John Ottman, who won an Oscar for his editing, is well aware of the criticism of the scene and in a recent interview he dropped an F-bomb over it. John Ottman said:

Wow, John Ottman might have earned an Oscar for his trouble, but he is clearly still frustrated at how that scene turned out and the ensuing backlash, which has naturally landed on him as the film’s editor. As he told Epicleff Media’s Score: The Podcast, he was so frustrated that he actually went back in the editing bay just to recut the scene and see it again how he originally intended.

That seems to be the major source of frustration for the Oscar winner. He has spoken before about how the scene makes him want to put a bag over his head and the reason for that is that it is not what he wanted it to be. He is not proud of that scene because, as he said, that is not how he originally cut it.

John Ottman may have been the editor on Bohemian Rhapsody but that doesn’t mean that he had complete and total authority on how the movie was cut. Although he went on to say that the director change was not the culprit behind the scene, John Ottman was still constantly getting notes from the studio about the edit.

John Ottman admits was the final cut of that mocked patio scene was his, the result of “too many cooks”, and notes from the studio that forced him to shave down the scene. The studio was worried that the first act was getting too long and it wanted to maintain the pace of the film without slowing down for the scene where Queen meets John Reid.

Describing the effect that had on the scene, John Ottman said:

So what happened was John Ottman had to take a scene that was much longer, and edit it down with quicker pacing– all while maintaining pivotal elements of the original scene. The end result of those somewhat opposing objectives is the action-movie/montage pacing of the mocked patio conversation scene.

Around Oscar time there was talk that John Ottman basically saved Bohemian Rhapsody in the editing room and given what he said here, I’d be very curious what his ‘Editor’s Cut’ of the film would look like. It seems unlikely we’ll ever get that, but maybe one day he’ll get to do his “fucking dissertation” on the effect studio notes and too many cooks can have on a movie.

While that scene may always be a thorn in John Ottman’s side, he still was a big part of a massively successful movie and he got his first Oscar out of it, so I’d say it’s a net win.

Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for all the latest movie news and check out our 2019 Release Schedule to keep track of the biggest movies you can look forward to this summer.

Bond 25 Will Reportedly Be Back On Its Feet ‘Within The Week’

Yesterday, James Bond fans were hit with some pretty bad news as they heard that Daniel Craig had been injured on the set of the next James Bond film and that production had been suspended as a result. Luckily, however, it doesn’t appear that the injury to Craig is particularly serious, as it’s now being reported production is expected to resume within the week.

Yesterday it was reported that Craig had slipped while running, tweaking ligaments in his ankle. Craig was apparently in a great deal of pain and was flown to the U.S. for X-rays and to ascertain the extent of the damage. Luckily, The Sun, who also revealed the initial injury, is now reporting that the damage is less serious than was feared and production should only remain closed down for a few days.

This is some of the only good news that Bond 25 has received in its life span. The film first had trouble getting off the ground after original director Danny Boyle left the project.Then, the script, which started over from scratch at that point, went through a number of hands, and according to some reports may still be having issues.

The script problems caused Bond 25 to shift its release date back from February of next year to April. If Daniel Craig‘s injury had been more severe another potential delay may have been in the cards, but it now seems like that won’t be necessary.

Craig’s injury came near the end of Bond 25’s time filming in Jamaica. We know, based on the plot synopsis of the new movie, that’s where the story will start. Bond will have retired at the begging of the film, but friend and colleague Felix Lighter of the CIA will request the former spy’s help. From there, we have no idea where things go. The film is still without an official title, not that James Bond movie titles on their own usually reveal much about the movies themselves.

Perhaps we’ll learn more about the story once we know where production on Bond 25 is headed next.

This is far from the first time Daniel Craig has been injured filming James Bond movies. In fact, Craig has had much more serious injuries in the past that have delayed production for more significant periods of time. While playing James Bond is certainly going to be a physical role, we all have our limits.

Daniel Craig has been a great James Bond but at 51-years-old, maybe it’s really not a bad thing that this is expected to be his final turn in the role. We certainly don’t want to see him hurt himself in any serious way, and he’s earned the right to rest. He may be getting older when it comes to playing James Bond but he’s still got decades of acting ahead of him, assuming he remains healthy.

Here’s How You Can Help Women in States With Extreme Abortion Bans

On Tuesday, the Alabama Senate approved a bill that would outlaw almost all abortions in the state. The new legislation would ban abortions at every stage of pregnancy—with only an exception for when the mother’s life is at serious risk, but not in instances of rape or incest. It’s not just women who would be penalized under the ban. Doctors who perform the procedure would be charged with felonies, and could face up to 99 years in prison.

Alabama’s abortion ban comes just after four other statesGeorgia and Ohio, included—passed so-called “heartbeat” laws, which ban abortions at about six weeks gestation. But this bill is the most extreme measure we’ve seen so far.

While none of these bills have been enacted—and all are likely be blocked in the lower courts—they’re indicative of a larger fight to control women’s bodies and potentially to overturn Roe v. Wade. Here, we’ve outlined how to help fight against these bans—and the overall effort to limit women’s reproductive rights.

Donate to organizations on the front lines

In addition to supporting national organizations leading the fight to protect women’s reproductive rights—like Planned Parenthood—there are many grassroots organizations helping women on the ground. Here are a few organizations to consider that are providing resources and access to local women looking to obtain abortions:

  • The Yellowhammer Fund: Located in Alabama, the Yellowhammer Fund offers funding for women seeking treatment at one of Alabama’s three remaining abortion clinics. The fund will also help with other barriers to access, such as travel or lodging.

  • National Network of Abortion Funds: NNAF is a network of funds—including the Yellowhammer Fund—across 38 states that helps eliminate economic for low-income women looking to obtain an abortion. They work with funds everywhere from Georgia to Texas to Ohio.

  • Magnolia Fund: A Georgia-based organization that provides resources to support the reproductive choices of women in the South, as well as to help defray the cost of abortion fees for women in Georgia.

  • Access Reproductive Care—Southeast: ARC helps people in the South—in states like Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, or Tennessee—receive access to safe and affordable reproductive care by offering financial and logistical support.

Work to elect progressive local leaders

25 men voted to pass Alabama’s abortion ban. And the other extreme abortion bans in states like Georgia have also succeeded in local legislature, thanks to conservative, mostly male politicians. In other words, one of the most effective ways to put a stop the bans is by ousting these men from office. To do that, we have to support—and help elect—their progressive opponents. Here’s a few places determined to do just that:

  • She Should Run: A nonpartisan nonprofit working across the country to get more women elected to office, at all levels.

  • Emerge America: An organization that trains progressive women to run for elected office in 25 states, such as Georgia, Alabama, Wisconsin, Virginia, and more.

  • Higher Heights for America: A national membership-based organization dedicated to electing black women to office across the country.

  • EMILY’s List: An organization dedicated to electing pro-choice Democratic women to office by guiding women through their campaigns from start to finish, with trainings, webinars, and volunteer support.

  • Run for Something: An organization that recruits young progressives to run in down-ballot races.

Volunteer on the ground

If you live in a state with an extreme abortion ban, or close enough to one to travel there, you can volunteer to be a clinic escort. As an escort you’ll accompany women as they enter an abortion clinic, and oftentimes have to walk past protesters. Connect with Planned Parenthood to look for opportunities, or use their Health Center guide to get in touch with local clinics to see how you can best be of service.

James Gunn Opens Up About Guardians Of The Galaxy Firing

The Marvel Cinematic Universe’s success is no secret, and serialized storytelling has changed the face of moviemaking. Phase Three has been the most successful yet, and every installment has been a critical and box office success. But it hasn’t been void of controversy, especially where Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn is concerned.

James Gunn was fired from the Guardians franchise by Disney this past July, after offensive tweets from a decade ago resurfaced. His absence put Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 on hold, and months went by without any notice. But Gunn has since been rehired, and finally broke his silence about what his experience was like. And that includes understanding why Disney decided to distance itself from the director/writer:

Despite how difficult the months following his firing may have been, it seems that James Gunn doesn’t have any ill-will toward the House of Mouse. Instead, he acknowledges that his tweets were indeed offensive, and therefore bad for business. While he eventually ended up being reinstated, Gunn also stresses the importance of taking responsibility for his actions.

As soon as James Gunn’s tweets resurfaced, the director took to social media to address the situation. He acknowledged their offensive nature, and claimed the past decade of personal development have turned him into a different man– one that wouldn’t make the same jokes. But Gunn was ultimately fired, an event which he thought might ruin his career.

In his same conversation with Deadline, James Gunn spoke about how he felt directly after he was fired and the story went public. And it certainly sounds like a dark and unsure place. As he put it:

James Gunn had a series of months before any news came from his career, although his firing did make the room for an unexpected collaboration with DC. Because before stepping back behind the camera for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, he’ll handle another scrappy group of comic book characters in The Suicide Squad.

While it took some time for James Gunn to be reinstated to finish his Guardians trilogy, he was in contact with the folks over at Disney. He explained he had a meeting and made piece with the studios decision, saying:

James Gunn’s firing was met with major backlash from the fandom, as well as members of the filmmaking world. The Guardians of the Galaxy cast signed a letter in solidarity with their director, and the movie remained in development hell without anyone to get behind the camera. But now Gunn has been brought back, essentially saving Guardians 3 in the process.

It’s currently unclear when Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will arrive in theaters, but Marvel Studios is expected to provide a look into the future this summer. The Guardians are in Avengers: Endgame, in theaters now. Be sure to check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

How The Guardians Of The Galaxy Movie Characters Compare To Their Comic Counterparts

The Guardians of the Galaxy (circa 2017) assembled side-by-side

The comic book movie genre was forever changed by Christopher Nolan when The Dark Knight convinced Hollywood to take superheroes seriously. That was until the comic book movie was revolutionized again six years later by James Gunn when Guardians of the Galaxy, starring then sitcom star Chris Pratt, convinced Hollywood to take superheroes less seriously again.

The planet-hopping, ‘70s pop hit-blasting, sarcasm-quipping heroes of the Marvel Cinematic Universe changed the superhero movie game as soon as we saw Chris Pratt’s Peter Quill (sorry, “Star-Lord”) jamming to Redbone’s “Come and Get Your Love” at the beginning of 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy. The funny thing is, despite becoming one of the most beloved groups of comic book movie characters in history, their source material is among Marvel’s most obscure and unrecognizable properties. In fact, if you ask a true fan of the comic’s original run, Star-Lord, Gamora, Groot, and company don’t look familiar.

In order to immerse yourself in the world of the Guardians of the Galaxy, first, you must forget everything you know about the refreshing sci-fi/comedy combo Guardians of the Galaxy (sorry, Chris Pratt fans) and go all the way back to even before Blue Swede released “Hooked on a Feeling,” when Marvel first introduced a group of ragtag cosmic warriors.

The original Guardians of the Galaxy, no Star-Lord in sight

Guardians of The Galaxy (1969 comic book lineup):

In the deepest reaches of space in the 31st century, a group of lone fighters, each the last of their own species and with vengeance in their hearts, must unite to defend the Earth solar system from the evil alien race the Badoon. They call themselves the Guardians of the Galaxy. Their names are Major Vance Astro, Martinex T’Naga, Charlie-27, and Yondu Udonta.

While you probably recognize one of those names from the MCU, the others probably have you scratching your head. The truth is that when the Guardians of the Galaxy first appeared in Marvel Super-Heroes #18 in January 1969, they were nothing like who their mainstream identities eventually became. Even the initial concept that inspired them was wildly different from the final product.

Guardians co-creator Roy Thomas had the idea of superhuman guerilla soldiers fighting against the Russian and Chinese armies in a wartorn United States, but after discussion with fellow writer Arnold Drake and Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Stan Lee, it evolved into an interplanetary adventure instead. Drake, with help from Lee, came up with the characters, who would get their own series years after their first introduction and were used infrequently in other Marvel works throughout the 1970s and 80s, gaining additional members Starhawk, Aleta Ogord, Nikki, Mainframe, and more.

While many of these characters would later be referenced in a post-credits scene in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, James Gunn’s film adaptation of the characters for the MCU focused on the 2008 relaunch of the series, using cosmic Marvel comic staples such as Peter Quill, Gamora, Rocket Raccoon, and other notable characters. Yet, even the characters in the films are essentially just shadows of their comic book counterparts. How do the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1 and their sequel characters compare to their original inception?

Guardians of the Galaxy (2014-present movie lineup)

Chris Pratt's Star-Lord next to his interplanetary policeman persona from the comics

Peter Quill (Star-Lord)

The leader of the Guardians of the Galaxy, Peter Quill (or, as he might prefer you to call him, “Star-Lord”), has a tragic backstory as a boy who was abducted by space pirates seconds after his mother died from cancer, but who still manages to enjoy the interplanetary life whilst donning a red leather duster and nano-tech face mask, blasting enemies with dual hand cannons, and rocking out to the Jackson 5. While the comic book character who inspired the MCU’s introduction still has the mask, the blasters, and the charm, much about Chris Pratt’s Star-Lord is the design of writer and director James Gunn.

Created by Steve Englehart and Steven Gan in 1976, Peter Quill was born in Colorado (not Missouri – that was St. Louis-native James Gunn’s own personal home state shoutout) to human mother Meredith Quill and alien father J’Son, the then-heroic heir to an intergalactic empire whose ship crash-landed on Earth when he met Meredith. Quill’s parentage is amended slightly in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 with his father revealed to be Ego The Living Planet (portrayed in human form as Kurt Russell), whose comic book background is another story entirely.

In the comics, Quill is orphaned at 10 years old after his mother is murdered by two soliders of the Badoon race seeking to end J’Son bloodline. Quill kills them before they reach him and he is later placed in an orphanage before growing up to become as astronaut. On a NASA mission, his ship malfunctions and he becomes stranded in the unknown reaches of space, where Yondu Odonta and the Ravagers save him and make him one of their own. He would later go on to become an interplanetary policeman and then form the 2008 version of the Guardians of the Galaxy that served as inspiration for James Gunn’s 2014 film adaptation.

Chris Pratt’s interpretation of Star-Lord, despite being half-celestial, is still a relatively grounded human being whose skills do not stretch much farther than piloting, marksmanship, and ’80s movie trivia. In the comics, however, Peter Quill, has telepathic abilities that allow him to communicate with Ship, a sentient energy source that primarily takes the form of his spaceship, hence the name. Of course, in the movie, Quill refers to his purely mechanical mode of transportation as the Milano, another nostalgic Easter Egg from James Gunn, referencing Quill’s childhood crush, Alyssa Milano from Who’s The Boss?

Zoe Saldana's Gamora next to her '80s hair band-esque comic book persona

Gamora

As far as base characteristics go, James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy got Gamora (Zoe Saldana) pretty much exactly right. Created by Jim Starlin and first appearing in Marvel’s Strange Tales series in 1975, she is the adopted daughter of Thanos, the last of the green-skinned Zen-Whoberis, and is, unquestionably, the most dangerous woman in the universe.

Her life on the side of heroism stretches further than her team-up with the Guardians in the 2008 comic book reboot, however. For one, she first attempted to betray Thanos just in her teens before later working as an assassin with the intent to avenge the genocide of her planet, becoming a key member in the battle for the Infinity Gauntlet, and even battling an earlier version of Drax the Destroyer at one point.

We should also mention not to bother looking to the comics for deeper insight into Gamora and Star-Lord’s romance. While their linked counterparts have a strong professional bond, that’s pretty much as far as it goes. Her most notable love interests have been space cop Richard Rider of the Nova Corps and Adam Warlock, with whom she adopted a daughter, Atleza. While neither of those characters have yet to be properly introduced into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the comics have seen Gamora hooking up with Tony Stark once. Yeah.

Apparently it is also a trend in the comics for her to die over and over and over again, and each time she is resurrected is only temporary until she bites the dust again. With this in mind, we have a few interesting theories about Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.

Drax's (Dave Bautista) comparisons to the Hulk make more sense when you look at his original comic b

Drax the Destroyer

Wrestler Dave Bautista made his star-making performance as Drax, the Guardians of the Galaxy favorite whose inability to pick up on sarcasm is made up by his imposing physicality and fierce skills in hand-to-hand combat (excluding placing his finger on his enemy’s throat). Of course, Drax’s backstory in James Gunn’s reimagining is also one of tragedy, having sworn revenge for the baddies killing his wife and child, but the comics gave him a similar, yet much darker, origin.

Marvel writer Jim Starlin introduced in a 1973 issues of The Invincible Iron Man the character of Arthur Douglas, a human being from Burbank, California, who was killed along with his wife by Thanos, who took Douglas’ daughter as his own. A being named Kronos was in need of a fighter to take on Thanos, so he took the vengeful spirit of Douglas and melded it with a powerful body of his creation. Thus, Drax the Destroyer was born with the sole purpose to kill Thanos.

During the character’s run through Marvel’s Silver Age, Drax was also blessed with powers he no longer has, including flight, the psychic ability to detect Thanos from far away, and cosmic concussive blasts that emit from his hands. Maybe that would have come in handy against the Abilisk in the opening of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. His skin also has a green tint, as opposed to the bluish-gray paint that covers Dave Bautista’s body in the film adaptations. Perhaps that helps Zoe Saldana’ Gamora stand out better, not that she needed much help in that area if we are being honest.

Hard to imagine Groot (Vin Diesel) as a frightening villain, right?

Groot

At the time, there was no moment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe more heartbreaking than Groot sacrificing his life for his new family in the third act of the first Guardians of the Galaxy. How could you not feel an emotional attachment to the kindhearted tree-like creature who is, arguably, the best role of Vin Diesel’s career? What if I told you that when Groot first graced the pages of Marvel comics, he was the last creature you would want to cross?

Groot comes from Planet X, home to the Flora colossi: a species of tree-like beings whose rough larynges makes their language almost impossible to understand, as if they are repeating “I am Groot” over and over. Now, that part is certainly true to James Gunn’s film. But, he was originally introduced in 1960 in Marvel’s Tales to Astonish as a villain who invaded Earth to capture humans for experimentation in the Tales to Astonish series, not to mention he was a monstrous 25 feet tall as opposed to 9 feet in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1. Yikes.

Groot would not be reintroduced as the heroic, friendly charmer we know him as today until 2006 in the “Annihilation: Conquest” storyline, which would later spin off into the modern day incarnation of Guardians of the Galaxy in 2008. Thank God for that, otherwise “I Am Groot” takes on a whole new meaning.

Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper, Sean Gunn) totally deserves his own movie

Rocket Raccoon

No one expected (heck, we all laughed at the idea) that a talking, gun-toting raccoon would be a key player in some of the most important battles of the universe (see Avengers: Endgame), but Bradley Cooper’s voice and Sean Gunn’s motion capture performance gave Rocket Raccoon just the right amount personality in Guardians of the Galaxy to be able to take him seriously. In fact, Rocket could get his own movie and it would probably be just as good as anything James Gunn has given us so far. He has already proven himself worthy as a loner when you look at his comic book history.

If you thought Rocket Raccoon’s name sounded a little too much like a Beatles reference, it is not be by accident. Even his origins are inspired by “Rocky Raccoon,” a song off of The White Album, given that the title of one of his first comic book appearances, in The Incredible Hulk #271 in 1982 (“Now Somewhere In the Black Holes of Sirius Major There Lived a Young Boy Named Rocket Raccoon”), references the lyrics. Later, in the mid-1980s, Marvel published a four-issue limited series with Rocket as the central character of his own before becoming a member of the relaunched Guardians of the Galaxy in 2008. It was even Rocket who recommended the name, having once heard it mentioned by founding member Major Vance Astro.

The differences between Rocket cinematic persona and comic book persona are subtle. He is still the same badmouthing expert strategist and tactician, but instead of being born a talking, anthropomorphic animal, James Gunn reimagined him as a creature of unknown origin whose current form as the furry woodland creature is the result of years of experimentation. Pretty dark for being referred to as “Avengers Light” for a while, huh?

Whoa, Nebula (Karen Gillan) with hair?!

Nebula

When we first met the cybernetic Nebula, played by the unrecognizable Karen Gillan in an uncomfortable amount of makeup and prosthetics in Guardians of the Galaxy, she was an ally to Ronan who we loved to hate, but from the end of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 to her contribution to Avengers: Endgame, we saw her as a tortured soul, seeking redemption and earning our sympathies. Even if she can still be a bit of “Blue Meanie,” we can’t really blame her, given her bleak upbringing as Thanos’ adopted daughter. In fact, James Gunn’s reimagining of Nebula’s origin is even darker than the comics.

Created by Roger Stern and John Buscema, Nebula was first introduced in the 1980s as a ruthless, Luphomoid space pirate and mercenary under Thanos’ command. She would eventually take on many key players from the Marvel Universe, from The Avengers (whose series she debuted in) to the Skrull Empire. At one point, she became lucky enough to wield the Infinity Gauntlet herself.

Her origins as a half-cyborg differ from the comics too. When Nebula claims to be Thanos’ granddaughter, he is offended by this and replaces most of her body with mechanical parts before officially claiming her as his own creation. In the Guardians of the Galaxy films, we learn that, while Nebula was growing up, Thanos replaced one part of her body with a new robotic device, one by one, as punishment each time she was defeated by Gamora in battle practice. And you thought high school was the worst nightmare a teen could face.

Other than a couple of minor alterations, Pom Klementieff as Mantis is perfect casting

Mantis

She may have the very unique and intriguing ability to emulate or manipulate feelings, but Mantis did not seem to be the likeliest choice as a new member of the team when she first appeared as Ego’s companion in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, played by Pom Klementieff. Fans fell in love with her endearing charm and child-like innocence, but compared to the rest of the crew, I would never have expected her to contribute much to the battlefield. More surprising is discovering that Mantis is, just about, the most watered-down character in James Gunn’s reimagining.

Born on Earth and of half-Vietnamese and half-German descent, Mantis was abandoned by her father in a section of Earth belonging to the Kree. Believing her to be the Celestial Madonna (think cosmic Virgin Mary), the Kree trained her in martial arts, which eventually earned her a spot with the Avengers (her first appearance in 1973) and later among the modern incarnation of the Guardians of the Galaxy characters.

For someone whose storyline was condensed in the movies, essentially, to “I touch people and feel how they feel,” Mantis has a swelling history in the comics. You could practically call her the Forrest Gump of the Marvel Universe. Hopefully, Gunn is taking note of this for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.

Proof that Yondu (Michael Rooker) really was a good guy all along

Yondu Udonta

We know him as a no-nonsense space pirate, Star-Lord’s true “daddy,” and, most importantly, “Mary Poppins, ya’ll!” But the Yondu Udonta of the Guardians of the Galaxy films is a pretty far cry from his noble savage comic book persona, other than being blue.

Yondu, a 31st-century being, debuted as the last of the Centurian species and a founding member of the aforementioned original Guardians of the Galaxy in 1969. Since he was not part of the current incarnation of Guardians of the Galaxy characters, James Gunn figured out how to work him into the story as a Ravager leader with a country-fried accent, courtesy of actor and friend to Gunn, Michael Rooker.

Remember that punk rock mohawk head fin he wore throughout the second half of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 that was referred to as a “prototype”? To comic book purists, that was the “true” fin, as it was Yondu’s own natural appendage in the original incarnation. In the films, Yondu uses the fin to control his floating arrow, a reference to his comic book counterpart’s skills with a bow and arrow. Of course, the MCU already had an archer, so that explains that.

James Gunn’s vision of Marvel’s cosmic avengers may be an exciting, colorful, ticklish nostalgia trip, but how much deeper the world of Guardians of the Galaxy goes in ink only makes us more excited to see what references and other surprises are in store for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. With that in mind, check back with CinemaBlend for more updates.

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Why Detective Pikachu And Sonic The Hedgehog Are Taking Totally Different Approaches To Their Big Screen Movies

Detective Pikachu

When the first trailer for Sonic the Hedgehog dropped late last month, the internet collectively imploded in a sea of threads, tweets and memes, all expressing confusion, frustration and horror at the look of the titular speedster. This live-action Sonic was not the video game icon that has been showing fans the meaning of speed since the early ’90s; this was something else, and it had human teeth.

Not long after the Sonic the Hedgehog trailer came out, another video game icon hit theater screens. The Pokémon franchise finally made its live-action feature film debut, with the face of the franchise leading the charge in Detective Pikachu.

In addition to the fact that they are both video game movies, the proximity of the Sonic the Hedgehog trailer and the theatrical release of Detective Pikachu invite obvious comparisons. I am not the first to notice this, but I think it is worth discussing because even a surface-level look at both films reveals the totally different approaches Sonic the Hedgehog and Detective Pikachu are taking to their big screen movies.

Let’s first look at Sonic the Hedgehog, the myriad ways the trailer confounded fans and what that says about the approach the film is taking.

Beyond the baffling trailer song choice and the changing of Sonic’s powers, the most obvious point of discussion was Sonic’s look in the new film. His overall proportions are quite different than his video game counterpart with limbs that are too muscular and a head and torso that are too small. What’s more egregious, though, are Sonic’s facial features.

The film design eschews Sonic’s traditional uni-eye look, where one eyeball has two pupils for a more realistic smaller, two-eye aesthetic. The design choice that has gotten the most hate, though, has to be Sonic’s teeth, which look very human, a look that doesn’t comport with the teeth of either his video game inspiration or the teeth of an actual hedgehog.

Sonic the Hedgehog Movie Poster

What’s especially fascinating about the reaction to Sonic’s look in the trailer is that it was entirely predictable. When the first poster featuring Sonic’s silhouette was revealed last year, fans were immediately skeptical of the hedgehog’s build. Complaints grew even louder when another poster showed Sonic’s eerily human and muscular legs.

I don’t know if it was a feeling that they knew better or that the complainers were in the minority, but did anyone involved with the film, after seeing the criticism of the posters, really think ‘Wait till they see the final design, they’re gonna love it!’?

Speaking about the decision to change Sonic’s eyes for the movie, executive producer Tim Miller previously said:

I don’t think SEGA was entirely happy with the eye decision, but these sorts of things you go, ‘It’s going to look weird if we don’t do this.’ But everything is a discussion, and that’s kind of the goal, which is to only change what’s necessary and stay true to the rest of it. He’s not going to feel like a Pixar character would because I don’t think that’s the right aesthetic to make it feel like part of our world.

Those last words are quite telling, “to make it feel like part of our world.” All of these changes to this iconic video game character for his feature film debut speak to the approach on the part of the filmmakers to make Sonic the Hedgehog “realistic.”

Sonic in the movie versus Sonic in the video game

That’s why Sonic has separate eyes and more human features, and why he’s an alien in the film. Because the choice was made to set this film in our world as we know it. Sonic the Hedgehog isn’t the first movie to take this approach when adapting a fantastical property to live-action (animation has more freedom to be strange in this regard). The Smurfs in 2011 and 1987’s Masters of the Universe come to mind as properties that took characters out of their fantasy worlds and plopped them in our Earth.

The thinking behind this strategy (from my perspective anyways) is that it creates a smaller barrier of entry for the audience. Instead of trying to explain to moviegoers that the world of the film is one in which characters like Sonic exist, he is made into an alien and dropped into our world, where only he is different and everything else is familiar.

This approach also necessitates that Sonic look more realistic, or the filmmaker’s idea of realistic for an alien hedgehog. The concern being that if Sonic looks too cartoony or too Pixar-like, as a CGI character, he will stick out like a sore thumb and look, for lack of a better word, fake.

It’s not an inherently bad approach and I have no doubt that everyone involved is working their hardest to make the best movie they can, one that also pleases fans of the character. But this approach of setting the story in our world and altering Sonic’s look, which was guaranteed to result in backlash, to fit into that world, speaks to a fundamental disconnect with the fans of this property and what people want from adaptations of iconic stories and characters.

Now contrast this with Detective Pikachu. Like Sonic the Hedgehog, Detective Pikachu is based on recognizable video game characters that fans have come to know and love over decades. And while I am sure that somewhere there are fans who have taken issue with the look of the Pokémon in the movie, there has been no major outcry because by and large they look pretty much exactly like their video game counterparts.

Detective Pikachu in the movie and in the game

Pikachu looks like Pikachu; from his lightning bolt tail and his rosy cheeks to his weapons-grade cuteness, he looks like the Generation 1 electric-type rodent Pokémon that became the face of the brand. The same is true for Charizard, Gyarados, Psyduck, Cubone, Bulbasaur, Mewtwo and all the rest. The film embraced the iconic designs of these creatures and rendered them in an extremely faithful fashion.

The only real sort of overture towards realism Detective Pikachu makes is to give the Pokémon some texture to make them feel more tangible and less like flat cartoons. But that tactic does little to nothing to diminish their resemblance to their video game inspirations.

Detective Pikachu was able to do this and give us such great live-action Pokémon because the story didn’t force things to take place in our world. Instead, the film took the approach that in the world of the film, Pokémon exist alongside humans. They aren’t aliens that just landed or genetic mutations or beasts from another dimension, they just are, and that premise required remarkably little in the way of world-building or expository setup.

The filmmakers trust that you know what Pokémon are, know what they look like and can wrap your head around a live-action world where they exist. There is no handholding and no timidity that audiences won’t get it or will check out if the movie goes all in on Pokémon weirdness.

It’s an approach that exudes a tremendous amount of confidence in the audience, trust in the characters and the story and faith in the source material. It either works or it doesn’t. Detective Pikachu bravely asks you to buy in and that gamble seems to have worked.

While opinions may vary, despite not striving for realism in the Pokémon designs, Detective Pikachu does the one thing it had to, according to CinemaBlend’s Mike Reyes: it convinces you that Pokémon and humans can live together in a live-action cinematic world. Even though they look almost exactly like the Pocket Monsters in the video game, it doesn’t take you out of the movie. More quantitative metrics also support the success of Detective Pikachu’s approach.

Rob Letterman’s movie is the best-reviewed video game movie of all time and it also enjoyed a bigger opening weekend than any of its video game adaptation predecessors. Audiences gave it an “A-“ CinemaScore and there certainly seems to be interest and potential for future Pokémon movies.

Jim Carrey as Dr. Robotnik

This isn’t all to say that Detective Pikachu’s approach was unquestionably right and Sonic the Hedgehog’s definitively wrong. Each property is different and adaptation is one of the most precarious forms of filmmaking. Sonic may well end up being a far better movie than Pikachu for all I know, and maybe going all in with a more fantastical world where Sonic exists wouldn’t have worked.

Nevertheless, it is also important to remember that this isn’t a literary adaptation. These aren’t only iconic characters, they have iconic designs, and I think it is telling that the highlight of the Sonic trailer, for me anyways, was at the end where Jim Carrey looks the most like his video game counterpart Dr. Robotnik.

To his credit, in response to the vocal criticism, Sonic the Hedgehog’s director Jeff Fowler said that design changes to Sonic are coming. It’s nice to know they’re listening and fan sentiment can make a difference. But I can’t help thinking that if this movie just took an approach that was less focused on realism and setting things in our world, and instead embraced the source material and trusted audiences to get it, the Blue Blur would be coming to the big screen surrounded by a spirit of excitement, not one of trepidation.

We’ll find out how Sonic the Hedgehog is received by the public when it races into theaters on November 8, but for now you can still enjoy Detective Pikachu on the big screen.

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Stray Kids On Growing Up, Taking More Creative Risks, And Dealing With Self-Doubt

Stray Kids are following their own path. And that reluctance to play by anyone else’s rules is precisely what makes this group of teens and young adults stand out. They’ve been releasing some of the boldest tracks in K-pop since making their debut with the blistering “District 9” a year ago, a song that harnessed their teen angst into a dizzying mix of hip-hop, rock, and EDM and quickly established them as rookie group to watch.

It’s their ability to channel that raw emotion into their music that has resonated with fans all over the world, many of whom are on the cusp of adulthood themselves. As such, the group’s signature sound can’t be contained in a single genre; it’s more of a state of being — a deeply earnest one.

“Stray Kids music is music that’s relatable and can help you out when you’re having a hard time,” leader Bang Chan tells MTV News over the phone from Seoul, where the group is preparing to embark on their first solo U.S. tour. Though, he quick to add, “It’s got a lot of energy, doesn’t it?”

And nowhere is that empathy and energy more apparent than on their latest single, “Miroh.” Inspired by the word miro, or “maze” in Korean, the boisterous track — produced by members Bang Chan, Han, and Changbin, otherwise known as 3racha — is a cacophony of sounds, rhythms, chants, and animal noises. The hook is massive, a perfect stadium-sized banger that shows off the group’s grit and potential. “It’s not hard / in this rough jungle,” Bang Chan sings. “It was me who ran into it / I’m okay.”

“‘Miroh’ was a really big attempt,” the 21-year-old singer and producer said. “It shows that as we’re getting older we tend to take more risks and try out new experiences, challenge ourselves.”

And as members Bang Chan, Woojin, Lee Know, Changbin, Hyunjin, Han, Felix, Seungmin, and I.N grow and mature, so does their music. Their previous I Am… series focused heavily on the theme of identity through the teenage perspective. Who am I? Who am I trying to be? And does everyone feel scared and aimless like I do sometimes? With their most recent release, Clé 1: Miroh, it’s clear that these questions are still at the forefront of their minds — and they’re facing them head-on, charging into adolescent uncertainty with newfound confidence and perspective that comes when you enter your twenties. And of course, a bit of bravado. Their song “Boxer” opens with a cheeky declaration: “Hello, I’m a young man who can fly anywhere.”

Within that “long but short kind of period” since their debut, Stray Kids have released four EPs and one pre-debut mixtape, all of which have been primarily written and produced by the members themselves. While 3racha have shaped the majority of the group’s discography, all nine members are credited writers and encouraged to contribute to the production.

“The fact that we make our own music is one of [our] biggest weapons because that way it’s a bit more genuine,” Bang Chan said. “It’s the message that we form and want to send everyone.”

“It’s much easier to express ourselves and express how we feel to the fans,” rapper, and fellow Aussie, Felix added. “It’s way more honest as well,” Bang Chan concluded. “It’s really important to Stray Kids.”

Getty Images

Members from left to right: Bang Chan, Hyunjin, I.N, Han, Changbin, Seungmin, Felix, Lee Know, and Woojin

That creative ethos starts with Bang Chan, who put the group together when they were trainees under Korea’s JYP Entertainment. (The Stray Kids logo is even written in his handwriting.) Fans were first introduced to the Australia-raised leader on the group’s survival program, aptly titled Stray Kids. Over the course of 10 episodes, Stray Kids — then teenagers with big dreams  — underwent teamwork challenges and regular evaluations for the chance to debut together as a group. The series documented the nine individuals as they prepared their blustery pre-debut song “Hellevator,” producing and practicing around the clock for a dream that was never very certain. In fact, members Felix and Lee Know were originally eliminated from the project but were ultimately brought back in the final episode, giving even more meaning to the phrase “nine or none.”

The group’s nonstop pace didn’t slow down after their debut, either. If anything, the desire to create and funnel their questions into their music got even stronger because of their fans (called STAY).

As such, they’re always creating. And when they feel stuck, they resort to the kinds of distractions you might expect from a group of young men: fresh air, movies (Creed), and anime (One Piece) for Bang Chan; video games and EDM music for Felix, who added, “I’ve been listening to ‘My Pace’ a lot.”

“I’m always on my laptop trying to make new stuff, whenever we have free time,” Bang Chan said. “On the plane as well. I make a lot of music on the plane. I remember I worked on ‘I Am You’ on the plane to New York last year. And we did use a bit of it, so it was pretty good.”

Of course, with that comes its own unique kind of pressure. “There’s that feeling of, ‘Will people like this music? Will our fans like this music? Will STAYs like this music?’ Sometimes, that can get into our heads,” he said. “Trying to satisfy everyone is going to be an eternal challenge.” Trying to do so while keeping up with the furious pace Stray Kids’ set in their first year is also challenging.

JYP Entertainment

Bang Chan (left) and Felix (right)

So it makes sense that time (examining it, questioning it, running away from it) is a running theme throughout Miroh. Album closer “19” is a moody and personal song, written and produced by member Han, that finds him navigating that age between adolescence and adulthood. “Maze Of Memories” is a hip-hop track in which the cadence matches the various twists and turns one might encounter while chasing your dreams. It starts off slow and foreboding, then evolves into something darker and more sinister — a nightmarish soundscape — before ending with a confident refrain of “never give up.” And then there’s “Chronosaurus,” an atmospheric song that associates time with something to be afraid of.

“While I was writing ‘Chronosaurus’ I did think a lot that time is something that has a lot of pressure attached to it. Even when you’re taking a test there’s always a time limit, or when you’re working there’s always a deadline,” Bang Chan said.

“I would love to have a superpower that could control time because then I could do whatever I want,” he added, laughing. “But time being something that no one can stop, because it’s something that’s always going to be with me anyway, you might as well get comfortable with it. Try to take some of the pressure off it.”

This candid exploration is something that means a lot to their fans, many of whom are also navigating their own everyday struggles — running into their own mazes and up against deadlines. “We wanted to spread the message that you guys aren’t the only ones,” the leader told the passionate crowd of fans at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center on Tuesday night (May 14), the first of two sold-out nights and the first stop of the U.S. leg of their Unveil world tour. The two-hour set traces the group’s young discography, telling the story of Stray Kids from the beginning.

Earlier singles “Hellevator” and “District 9” are full of angst and aggression — teens who balked at societal pressures and followed their own rules — while the energetic “My Pace” is uplifting and anthemic, and b-side “Voices” exposes their deep-seated insecurities. “I Am You,” a song written for their fans, packs an emotional punch (“You shined on me when I didn’t even know myself,” Hyunjin raps) and “Get Cool” is a playful ode to living in the moment (“Doesn’t matter if the world is a cold place ’cause I’m getting cooler,” Bang Chan sings). By the end, it’s clear: Their music is a mirror to their fans, reflecting their innermost thoughts and anxieties — and intertwining their stories in the process.

“At events where we get to meet up with our fans they talk to us about what they’re feeling or what’s on their minds,” Bang Chan said. “Knowing that, we can tell that our fans are changing and getting older with us. It’s really cool to experience that.”

But it’s not just the themes in their music that connect with fans; it’s the members themselves. Despite the number of rappers in their arsenal and their powerful stage presence, Bang Chan jokingly insists: “We’re a mess!” And anyone who’s seen even one episode of their weekly web series or tuned into one of their live streams would probably agree. After all, teenage boys are still teenage boys, regardless of whether or not they’re idols.

Take, for example, their main rapper, who spits bars at a breakneck speed. “Changbin-hyung is different on-stage,” Felix said. “When people see him on stage, they think he’s this dark rapper. But at the end of the day, when it’s just us, he’s a big brother that plays around a lot.”

And then there’s baby-faced Felix, whose deep voice and effervescent personality hardly seem like an obvious pairing at first but are essential to the group’s sonic identity.

“I now know how to use my voice a bit more. As we record for new songs, I’m able to improve and learn from 3racha on how to record,” he said, reflecting on the past year. “And not only that. Since being in the group, I’m learning more about myself as well and who I really am. Being with Stray Kids has made me feel more confident. It made me who I really am. I feel brave these days.”

When asked about the biggest change he sees in himself since being part of Stray Kids, Bang Chan was quick to note that he still doesn’t have any answers. “I have always been on a quest to find who I really am,” he said, pausing. “Honestly, I don’t think I’ve figured it out 100 percent yet.”

“But I have learned a lot about how to be on stage and how to communicate with my members and STAYs,” he added. “Even producing our music, every time I make a new song, I learn something new. And I’m still learning. I’m excited thinking about that now — there’s so much more to learn.”

This perspective — approaching life as a series of shared experiences, not obstacles — is what makes Stray Kids voices for their generation. By opening up, they’re encouraging others to do the same, to forge their own paths and perhaps learn something new about themselves along the way.

Will John Wick Chapter 3 Beat Out Avengers: Endgame At The Box Office?

We all knew that Avengers; Endgame was going to be the movie to beat at the box office this year, but somehow the film still surprised us. It set every opening weekend record there was to set when it debuted and it has remained at the top of the box office ever since. However, that spot can’t last forever and it looks like Keanu Reeves may be the man to finally take down the Avengers, as John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum has a serious shot and taking the box office crown.

Avengers: Endgame finished last weekend with $63 million, a 57% drop over the previous week. That’s about the same percentage drop that the film saw between its first and second week of release. If that pattern holds up and Endgame drops another 57% or more, then it will finish next weekend with around $27 million. This would put it well behind John Wick: Chapter 3, as the movie is currently tracking to do $30 million or more in its opening weekend.

John Wick: Chapter 3 looks like it will finish next weekend with something between $30 and $35 million, though Variety says some analysts are putting the number as high as $40 million. That’s a solid number, to be sure, but it’s a number that would have put the film in third place behind Detective Pikachu if it had come out last weekend. However, it looks like John Wick may have waited the perfect amount of time as Avengers: Endgame hysteria has now dropped to a somewhat manageable level.

Of course, there is always the possibility that these numbers won’t end up looking quite the way that projections are suggesting. Detective Pikachu was, at one point, tracking for an opening weekend close to $100 million last weekend and ended up doing more like half that.

It’s unclear if that happened because people just wren’t as interested in the Pokemon movie or if Endgame really ate into the movie’s box office more than expected. If the issue was the latter, we could potentially see John Wick underperform in the same way that Pikachu did.

If John Wick: Chapter 3 does perform as expected it will likely see a franchise best opening, as Chapter 2 opened to slightly more than $30 million.

In this day and age it’s unusual for a single movie to hold the box office for even two weekends in a row, as every weekend has at least one major release looking for an audience. If Avengers: Endgame is somehow able to win the box office again next weekend it will become the first movie since Black Panther to do that four weekends in a row (Panther was actually able to win the box office for five weekends).

Of course, even if Avengers: Endgame doesn’t win the box office, we can be fairly certain it’s not done bringing in the box office. It will likely continue to bring in several million over the next several weekends. The movie is the second highest grossing movie of all time worldwide and third highest domestically. All of those records are still very possible for Endgame.

How to Clean White Sneakers the Right Way

Some things just look better when they’re broken in—a leather jacket, the perfect 501s, a killer pair of boots—while others, honestly, don’t. Which is why the appeal of white sneakers is categorically undeniable. Also undeniable: The fact that your pristine Stan Smiths, your investment Yeezy Powerphases, and your beloved Converse will, without question, get downright grimy. Googling “how to clean white sneakers” might be an exercise in futility, though, given the confusing amount of tips, tricks, and hacks people (and Pinterest) swear by. But now, thanks to one simple tweet, the ideal solution appears to have been found. And there are pics to prove it.

When, a few years ago, Twitter user @sarahtraceyy sent out side-by-side photos of her Converse sneakers caked in grime alongside a seemingly new, stark-white pair (with the caption “I am a miracle worker”), let’s just say people were floored. “God obviously saw me googling how to clean white shoes today and sent this tweet my way,” one commenter wrote, with another asking “OMG, what kind of witchcraft.”

Turns out, it’s not witchcraft at all, but a precise mix of stuff you probably have at home right now. In another tweet, this self-proclaimed miracle worker bestowed upon the Web her recipe for the fresh sneakers: “ok rinse shoes, mix 1:1.5 of baking soda & detergent, scrub w toothbrush, let it sit for a while, rinse, put in washer, baby powder/dry🌞”

The hack has been retweeted more than 94,000 times, with a curious public wanting more details. (“Any special kind of detergent?” someone asked. “Nope! I just used one with like extra stain remover,” @saratraceyy replied, before clarifying to another user that she’s talking about laundry detergent, not dish soap.)

So, there you have it. The ultimate (and Twitter-approved) “how to clean white sneakers” hack for you to try out when you’ve worn your Cons one too many times. But, if you’re still itching to replace your tired pair, here are five fresh canvas sneakers to dirty up this summer.

Nordstrom

Converse Chuck Taylor® Low Top Sneaker

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Urban Outfitters

Keds Champion Original Sneaker

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Vans

Vans Old Skool Platform

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Shopbop

Superga Mule Sneakers

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Shopbop

SeaVees Monterey Sneakers

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Black Mirror Season 5: Everything We Know So Far

Netflix just dropped the first trailer for Black Mirror season five, and I have only one comment: Miley Cyrus in a purple wig.

OK, I have a bit more to say than that. This is Black Mirror, after all, one of the most interesting and innovative TV shows out there, full stop. Cyrus is lending her talents to one of the three episodes slated to drop on June 5. Her character is still a mystery, but this new teaser drops a few hints. It appears she plays some kind of pop star experiencing a crisis. In one scene she seems nervous with her blond hair down and messy. In the next, she’s onstage sporting a neon wig and a blank expression, flanked by shimmery backup dancers. The sequence is intriguing, to say the least, as are the other confusing images the trailer throws at us.

Check it out for yourself, below:

Hooked? Me too. Here’s everything we know about Black Mirror season five so far:

The premiere date. June 5, 2019.

The episode count. Netflix teases “three new stories” in this trailer, so it’s safe to assume there will be three episodes.

The cast. Confirmed cast members include Anthony Mackie, Miley Cyrus, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Topher Grace, Damson Idris, Andrew Scott, Nicole Beharie, Pom Klementieff, Angourie Rice, Madison Davenport, and Ludi Lin. Their exact roles in these stories are unknown.

Technology is still playing a crucial role. Variety notes this season will dive deeper into artificial intelligence, smart technology, and virtual reality. According to The Hollywood Reporter, technology will specifically intersect with the concepts of “marriage, self-esteem, fame, social media, and mental health.”

Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones are still at the helm. Brooker is the writer and creator, and he executive-produces alongside Jones.

The storylines. Still unknown, though the trailer offers some broad strokes. One episode seems to focus on an isolated young girl who befriends an Alexa-type robot. Infidelity plays a heavy theme in another, while Cyrus’ episode appears to tackle the monsters of pop superstardom. Very meta.

This post will be updated with more information as it comes in.