Having An Actress Playing La Llorona On Set Made A World Of Difference To The Cast

With the advancement of CG technology in recent years, actors playing off tennis balls and green screens has become common place on movie sets. As one can imagine, acting terrified at the sight of ominous neon green figures asks a lot of one’s imagination. Thankfully for the cast of The Curse of La Llorona had Mexican folklore’s “Weeping Woman” to star into the eyes of during the making of the horror film.

CinemaBlend’s own Sean O’Connell sat down with some of the cast during SXSW, where The Curse of La Llorona had its world premiere during the film festival’s closing weekend. During the interview, the film’s star Linda Cardellini gushed about the physical presence of the evil spirit on set with these words:

The titular La Llorona (played by Marisol Ramirez) is an apparition caught between Heaven and Hell, who drowned her own children in rage and now preys to replace them with the kids of Cardellini’s character. The actress shared the difference it made for her to have Ramirez playing the evil presence, especially with the terrifying makeup La Llorona dons in the film.

In the interview, Cardellini also commented on the actress’ accessibility off camera, due to her charming personality on set. This especially came in handy when it came time for the kids on set to play opposite La Llorona. Although her appearance was one of an evil spirit, because she was so great with the kids on set, they were able to do their job without actually getting scared out of their wits of the actress.

The Curse of La Llorona director Michael Chaves pitched in, explaining how no amount of CG can replicate the kind of performance Marisol Ramirez gave as the apparition. Here’s what he said:

While it looks like having the actress on set was an overall positive experience for cast and crew of The Curse of La Llorona, actress Patricia Velasquez admitted having a co-worker with her creepy makeup makes for some off putting breaks. In her words:

Can’t blame her, La Llorona looks terrifying! Check out the cast interview below:

The new horror release belongs between the two Conjuring movies in the universe’s timeline though it’s the first spin-off to not be based on the findings of demonologist couple Ed and Lorraine Warren. Will you be braving The Curse of La Llorona this weekend? Let us know in the comments.

A Stalin Reference Was Reportedly Removed From Hellboy In Russia

Every now and then, you’ll come across an instance where a movie has been edited because it’s airing in a particular country, like how some of the entries on Steve Rogers’ to-do list in 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Solider were different depending on where the film was released. In the case of the Hellboy reboot, its Russian release was apparently adjusted so that a reference to Joseph Stalin was replaced with a different notorious historical figure being mentioned.

If you’ve already seen Hellboy, you might recall a moment when the eponymous protagonist mentions how the one-eyed with Baba Yaga, one of the movie’s side villains, once tried to resurrect Joseph Stalin. Here are his exact words:

However, per BBC News, Russian moviegoers heard this line instead:

That’s right, rather than reference the man who led the Soviet Union from 1922 to 1953, the Russian version of Hellboy decided to mention Adolph Hitler instead, another dictator from the mid-20th century. This isn’t the first time that a movie in Russia has had to deal with Stalin-related censorship, as last year the UK comedy The Death of Stalin was denied release in the country because it was deemed “disgusting” and “extremist.”

Going off social media responses, evidently many Russian viewers were not pleased with Stalin’s name being replaced with Hitler’s in Hellboy. It was also noted online that Baba Yaga mentioning Hitler doesn’t really make any sense since she’s a Russian folklore character.

For the English screenings of Hellboy in Russian, Stalin’s name was bleeped and the subtitles included Hitler’s name instead. This was one of only two ways that Hellboy was censored in Russia, the other being a Russian curse word that Grigori Rasputin (another Russian historical figure) utters being removed.

While the exact reasoning for why Stalin’s name was taken out of Hellboy, BBC’s article also noted that a recent poll showed that 70% of Russians believe Stalin played a positive role in Russian history. So this could just be an instance of not wanting to portray such a notable individual in a negative light.

In any case, the rest of Hellboy played the same in Russia as it did domestically. Hitting theaters last week, the reboot has taken a beating both critically and commercially, collecting a lot of negative reviews (it ranks at 15% on Rotten Tomatoes and has a C CinemaScore) and making only $15 million worldwide so far. There was also reportedly some major drama that went on during production.

Keep checking back with CinemaBlend for more news about Hellboy, and don’t forget to look through our 2019 release schedule to learn what movies are coming out later this year.

Mark Hamill Went Above And Beyond To Make Chucky Special In The New Child’s Play

Mark Hamill may be best known for his onscreen role as the heroic Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars franchise, but he is also a prolific voice actor who has voiced great villains over the years like Firelord Ozai in Avatar: The Last Airbender and Batman’s nemesis, the Joker, in DC’s animated movies and series. Now he is lending his voice to another iconic character, this one belonging to the horror genre, Child’s Play’s Chucky.

CinemaBlend’s own Eric Eisenberg spoke with Seth Grahame-Smith, one of the producers on the upcoming reboot/remake of Child’s Play in an exclusive interview, and he spoke about how Mark Hamill really went above and beyond to make his Chucky special. Seth said:

Wow, Mark Hamill was not messing around, he really approached Chucky with all the preparation that he would a live-action character and perhaps more so. Seth Grahame-Smith sounds as though he was both surprised and impressed at how Mark Hamill viewed the role as an acting challenge, and the level of homework that he put in to develop the voice for Chucky.

Even before he had recorded a single line of dialogue, Mark Hamill had already watched all of the films in the Child’s Play/Chucky franchise and was working on multiple voices for his iteration of the character. All of this for a killer doll; that’s what you get with a true pro voice actor like Mark Hamill.

I guess it should be unsurprising he puts this much thought into his characters given how vocal he has been about the direction of Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars Sequel Trilogy. He isn’t just reading a script, he has an idea in his head of who his characters are and what their story should be. All that hard work paid off too, as Seth Grahame-Smith continued:

It sounds like Mark Hamill knew that he had the unenviable task of taking on an iconic character that already has a signature voice. Mark Hamill obviously wasn’t going to try and imitate Brad Dourif who has voiced Chucky in all the previous films and is the voice of Chucky to this point.

With that in mind, Mark Hamill really wanted to put his own spin on Chucky and work hard to make sure that this new Chucky was memorable and unique and that he sounded the way he does for a reason that is informed by his character.

This makes sense too considering that the Chucky in the new Child’s Play isn’t a doll with the spirit of a serial killer in him. This new Chucky is more a Black Mirror-esque killer A.I. that turns smart home products into tools to kill. So he should have his own unique voice and Mark Hamill took that responsibility very seriously.

We haven’t heard (or seen) much from Mark Hamill’s Chucky in the trailers so far, and they seem to be really building him up. If Seth Grahame-Smith’s comments are anything to go by, the famous actor disappeared and really became Chucky for Child’s Play. And given Mark Hamill’s track record, we have no reason to doubt that he will be a worthy torchbearer for this horror icon.

Child’s Play slashes its way into theaters on June 21. Check out our 2019 Release Schedule to see all the movies headed your way as we enter the summer movie season.

Standout Moments From Beyoncé’s Homecoming Doc We’re Crazy In Love With

As Netflix has grown in popularity over the years, the streaming service has been getting in formation with all kinds of exclusive content to keep us on the couch, whether it’s award-winning films and TV such as Roma and Black Mirror, Noah Centineo-led rom-coms or reality television such as Queer Eye. The scrolling potential is endless and it can often be a mess to sift through. But every once in a while, the streaming giant delivers us an unforgettable gift, and this time it’s from pop superstar/angel Beyoncé.

Whether you were one of the lucky fans in the crowd of Queen Bey’s Coachella epic last year, caught the YouTube livestream broadcast or vaguely heard about the event after the fact, all the buzz surrounding it makes it one of the few concert experiences that begs to be immortalized.  Beyoncé transformed music festival expectations by turning what could have been a simple concert set into a mighty showcase of an icon’s 22-year career. Homecoming allows Netflix users to relive the event and look behind the scenes into just how the vocalist pulled it off.

The documentary is packed with memorable moments that make it spectacular, and it’s time to unbox the highlights to the left, to the left:

Her Regal Entrance

With the pound of a drumbeat, Beyoncé makes a powerful entrance to the Coachella main stage dressed in a Nefertiti-style get up, stunning the eyes on her and commanding her acclaimed status as a queen. The powerful introduction sets the stage for the caliber of performance we’re about to see as a giant pyramid full of 200 performers (including dancers and a “university” orchestra) are unveiled at center stage.

Beyoncé makes a second grand entrance at the top of the pyramid after the band hypes her up, and the crowd’s response is unlike any other. They are yelling “Beychella” before the phrase is even announced as a new iteration of “Crazy In Love” starts to play.

It’s quite the sight to behold as the singer delivers some near-perfect vocals, while dropping moves with her army of dancers. As the cinematography flips between Beyoncé in her first and second weekend performance and the amazed crowd, it’s clear the concert was orchestrated with a cinematic experience in mind all along.

Homecoming’s Concept

In between the concert, Homecoming also takes it back to the rehearsal stages of the performance, which was a massive, almost year-long undertaking by the artist. The pyramid of performers behind her, donning sorority letters of yellow and pink, signify the college experience Beyoncé never had due to her time on Destiny’s Child. She’d always wanted to go to a HBCU and Beychella became a way for her to create this community she’d dreamed of.

Since her headlining had the historical significance of being the first African-American woman to get top-billing for the festival, Beyoncé took that title to heart in everything that she planned. She personally picked dancers and musicians who could represent looks and backgrounds that have been dismissed in the past on that grand stage. Beyoncé’s concept for Homecoming really shows her character of taking the opportunities given to her and putting every ounce of effort into it and giving her fans and family something to be proud of.

Another star of her status would have taken the easy way out and done a performance already decided upon from their tour or just belted out their greatest hits. Homecoming really shows to both casual listeners and fans of her just what goes into the product we often see in her music, videos and performances, and it’s as massive of a project as it looks at the end of the line.

Her Post-Pregnancy Comeback

Another unexpected bit we learn from Homecoming is just how much of a sacrifice and personal journey putting on this show was for Beyoncé. The artist has asserted herself as a very powerful woman over the years that her own personal challenges can go by the wayside. In this documentary, she gets candid about how the preparation for Beychella was an emotional trial for her, as she had just given birth to her twins Rumi and Sir when she started up plans for the Coachella performance.

Beyoncé spoke about the immensely difficult pregnancy she had, which concluded with an emergency C-section. Learning the dance choreography for a two-hour show she was leading as her body was recovering and adhering to a very strict diet (which looked like it only consisted of apples?) so she could do the performance was an incredible point for the artist to make in his documentary, because wow, did she pull it off.

She also talked of her struggles to be away from her newly born children and 7-year-old Blue Ivy during practices. Her vision of having her “homecoming” back to the stage after her pregnancy – which had her miss her first chance to headline the year before is a beautiful theme that gives viewers a new perspective on her attention to her career.

The On-Stage Reunions

Over halfway through the show, fans were already over the moon with the show Beyoncé was putting on for them, but then this happens: the trio that started it all reunite on stage looking like Charlie’s Angels. Homecoming captures the reaction of the audience really well here as fans in the crowd get emotional and devotedly sing along to “Lose My Breath,” “Say My Name” and “Soldier,” with the original members of Destiny’s Child who look badass as ever strutting the stage side by side.

It’s a nostalgic moment for those who have followed Beyoncé from the beginning and clearly an important one to the artist too whose smile especially lights up stage when beside her girl group sisters for the number.

Before Destiny’s Child hit the stage, her famous hubby Jay-Z also came onstage to duet “Deja Vu” with her in a sweet moment between the two that had their chemistry beaming on stage in a way we don’t always see between the two of them, especially after the singer belted out angry tunes of his past infidelities prior. In another cute moment to cut the overwhelmingly beautiful dance numbers and pop tunes is when Beyoncé’s sister Solange also comes on stage to bust some moves with her during the bridge of “Get Them Bodied.”

All in all, the Beyoncé film is a highlight in of itself as it showcases an incredible feat by the singer on that Coachella stage last year that will be talked about for years to come. The singer beautifully captures her memorable set, opens up about her behind-the-scenes prep and leaves a whole lot of heart on that stage. There are so many more moments I’m not over yet. Did you see Beyoncé’s Netflix movie? What were your favorite moments? Sound off in the comments below.

Martin Lawrence Celebrated Bad Boys For Life Wrapping Production With Photo From The Set

Development hell is a realm that any film worth its salt is lucky to escape. Projects in this land of the damned were once promising, until the point where they become an empty promise. But every now and then, a movie is powerful enough to escape this demon pit, and make it to the finish line, and Bad Boys For Life is one such film to earn such an honor.

This calls for a celebration, and leave it to Martin Lawrence to commemorate the occasion with a photo on the day Bad Boys For Life wrapped production. Check out that photo for yourself below:

It wasn’t too long ago that Will Smith was commemorating the start of production for Bad Boys For Life, so it’s fitting that Martin Lawrence back his partner’s call with a similar gesture during the long awaited film’s final moments of filming. Considering the history of this film’s production, we can’t blame them for celebrating that Bad Boys For Life actually exists, and is about to have the finishing touches bestowed upon it for a run in theaters next year.

Several years past 2003’s release of Bad Boys II, rumors about a third installment in director Michael Bay’s buddy cop franchise ran rampant up until 2015 when there was an official announcement of not one, but two sequels, set to debut in 2017 and 2019. While there was a fair amount of optimism that this plan would come to fruition, it eventually was derailed, despite promising developments along the way.

If Bad Boys For Life’s original incarnation stuck, we’d have seen a film written and directed by Joe Carnahan, the mind that brought us films like Smokin’ Aces, The Grey, and the upcoming film, Boss Level. But eventually, the setbacks that continued to delay this third film saw Carnahan leave the project, paving the way for a new pair of directors and a new lease on life.

The current lineup for Bad Boys For Life does see Will Smith and Martin Lawrence return to their respective roles of detectives Mike Lowry and Marcus Burnett, as seen in this commemorative photo on Lawrence’s Twitter feed. But this time out, young directors Adil El Arbi and Bilal Fallah will be shepherding the destruction and excitement that follow this legendary pair, with a particularly interesting rumored plot involving the break up (and eventual make up) of Lowry and Burnett.

It all brings us to this very real moment, where Martin Lawrence, Will Smith, and everyone else behind Bad Boys For Life have completed their task. Now, all that stands between this hotly anticipated film and its potential audience is the post-production process. Looking at everything this film went through to get here, that’ll probably be the easiest part of the whole process.

Bad Boys For Life will finally have its day in theaters on January 17, 2020; unless it gets a bump into a summer release date more worthy of movies sporting gun fights and car chases.

Latest Avengers: Endgame TV Spot Confirms Another Superhero Team Up From The Movie

After a long year of waiting, Avengers: Endgame is nearly upon us. The Russo Brothers shocked hardcore fans and casual moviegoers alike by the events of Infinity War, which ended with Thanos’ victory over the titular heroes. Fans are eager to see how The Avengers are grappling with life after Thanos’ snap (aka The Decimation), and witness new character pairings from the surviving characters.

A new Avengers: Endgame TV spot teased just that, and it’ll get fans very excited. Because alongside the footage that we’ve seen before, this new trailer shows Tony Stark flicking a mini Ant-Man off of his shoulder. You can check it out for yourself below.

In a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment, the new Avengers: Endgame trailer shows Tony Stark safe and sound back on earth, and working alongside Paul Rudd’s Ant-Man. Scott Lang was noticeably absent from Infinity War, so fans are definitely eager to see him crossover with the rest of the heroes when the blockbuster arrives next week.

The new footage from this TV spot is super exciting, and teases the type of interesting team dynamic audiences will be privy to once Avengers: Endgame finally hits theaters. While Infinity War separated the massive cast of heroes into two distinct groups (Team Wakanda and Team Titan), Endgame looks like it’ll unite the surviving heroes for one last stand against the Mad Titan. Ant-Man and Iron Man were on opposite sides during Captain America: Civil War, so it’ll be great to see these two comedic technology-based heroes working together for Endgame.

In the brief shot of Tony Stark flicking Ant-Man off his shoulder, he’s seen wearing a S.H.I.E.L.D. jumpsuit. This is a detail that has thrown fans for a loop, as it’s unclear how Nick Fury’s organization will come into play during Endgame. Despite being just a week left out of Endgame‘s arrival, there’s still plenty of time for more fan theories. Personally, I think they might just have some S.H.I.E.L.D. gear in Avengers Facility, which appears to be a significant location in the upcoming blockbuster.

The trailers for Avengers: Endgame tease that Paul Rudd’s Scott Lang will have a significant role in the battle to come. Fans were bummed when he was noticeably absent from Infinity War alongside Hawkeye. But both of those heroes will help fill in the ranks of The Avengers, now that so many heroes were reduced to ashes after the snap.

When we last saw Ant-Man, he was left stranded in The Quantum Realm after Hope, Janet, and Hank turned to dust. This setting may have a major role to play in Avengers: Endgame, and it should be fascinating to see exactly how Scott ends up at Avengers Facility as seen in the trailers. Luckily, we don’t have much longer to wait.

Avengers: Endgame will arrive in theaters on April 26th. In the meantime fill out CinemaBlend’s Endgame death pool, and check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

Rex’s Journey From Star Tours To The Black Spire At Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge Revealed

Back when Disneyland unveiled the original version of Star Tours, it was quite different than the version of the attraction we have now. Rather than having a confused C-3PO as your pilot, your tour ship was flown by RX-24, or R3X, a droid voiced by Paul Reubens who was even more inept at piloting the ship than 3PO. We already knew that R3X would be making his return to active duty in the new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge land, but at Star Wars Celebration we learned there’s a whole story as to how he got there.

During the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge panel at SWCC last week, Lucasfilm Story Group member Matt Martin revealed that, when the decision was made to turn R3X into a DJ at Oga’s Cantina, he took on the responsibility of creating the story of how R3X went from becoming a Star Tours pilot to a cantina DJ. According to Martin…

While Matt Martin doesn’t explain exactly how R3X became part of the Rebel Alliance, Imagineering Story Editor Margaret Kerrison says that what Martin wrote was something like 17 pages long, so it probably maps out a very specific story as to how R3X joined the Rebellion. That’s a story I’d love to read.

R3X proves during the original Star Tours that he’s not much of a pilot. He takes the wrong way out of the hanger and ends up completely missing his destination, the forest moon of Endor, and entering a meteor shower. Why the Rebellion would want somebody like that to pilot a ship I can’t guess, but I suppose when you’re fighting the Galactic Empire, beggars can’t be choosers.

While it has never been seen in a movie, the Battle of Jakku is a major event that takes place following Star Wars: The Return of the Jedi that was the final nail in the coffin of the Empire. It’s more than a little hilarious to imagine that somewhere in that battle R3X was up in space flying a ship. He’s apparently been on Batuu ever since, but now, he’s a DJ.

Paul Reubens returned to record a lot of new dialogue for R3X. This will certainly be a lot of fun for fans. While it’s hard to argue that Star Tours isn’t a greatly improved attraction now, R3X had a certain charm to him that is missing now..

Of course, actually getting to experience R3X at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge won’t be easy. From all reports, Oga’s Cantina, won’t be a location with a great deal of space, even less if you want to sit down, and you can be sure it’s going to be incredibly popular, if only because it will be one of the few places at Disneyland where alcohol can be purchased.

Looks Like Dark Phoenix Might Have The Smallest Opening Of The X-Men Franchise

As the final entry in the recent run of X-Men films, Dark Phoenix has been an interesting case study when it comes to what sort of opening to expect. With several release date bumps to the film’s name, it’s hard to tell if Fox is being protective of the film’s chances in theaters, or if they’re just trying to find a good spot for it to take its lumps and move on.

In either case, it looks like we have our first big indicator of whether Dark Phoenix will rise from the ashes, or be reduced to embers. The opening weekend for the film is estimated to land between $40 – 55 million, and if this holds, there’s a good chance that director Simon Kinberg’s film will have the smallest opening of the entire X-Men franchise.

Spanning back to the year 2000, the X-Men series has had peaks and troughs when mapping its box office history. Starting with $54.5 million opening in the first July of this millennium, the series would climb to its highest opening ever with 2006’s X-Men: The Last Stand, which weighed in with a $102.7 mil opening.

Before these estimates for Dark Phoenix came in pegging the film with a $40 – 55 million range, the low water mark stood at 2011’s X-Men: First Class, which brought in $55.1 million in one of the few openings in the franchise taking place outside of its typical May time frame.

So in order to avoid this outcome, Dark Phoenix needs to not only stay on the high end of the opening range estimated by Box Office Pro, it needs to bury the needle and go above and beyond those numbers. It wouldn’t have to be a huge jump past the high water mark, but the more it can surpass these numbers, the better Dark Phoenix’s chances would be of recouping its rumored budget. Though the whispers of a monetary spend upwards of $200 million don’t exactly bode well.

Counter to the typical picture of comic book box office success, the X-Men series has been less consistent in its increases, but more consistent in its cyclical nature. Looking at the pattern as it stands, Dark Phoenix’s intended end of the current phase of mutant powered films couldn’t have come at a better time.

Should this new crater in the X-Men box office time line occur, there is a silver lining that’s currently presented as a con. There’d be nowhere to go but up when the X-Men franchise eventually makes to return to the box office as part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Revitalizing this classic fan favorite property, with the hype of a fresh MCU coat of paint, is exactly the blockbuster that everyone will be waiting for.

For now though, we’ll have to wait and see if Dark Phoenix makes or breaks this round of fate in the X-Men universe, and if that final impressive trailer makes any difference in the matter, when the movie debuts on June 7th.

The Russo Brothers Share Their Favorite Character Arc in the MCU

Captain America in Age of Ultron

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is on the edge of a precipice, with just days left before Avengers: Endgame finally arrives in theaters. The Russo Brothers will bring Phase Three of the MCU to an end, and the stakes could not be higher. Given the state of the shared universe at the end of Infinity War, fans have spent the last year theorizing about what could come next, now that Thanos wiped out half of all life.

Our questions will be answered shortly, as Endgame is just days away from arriving in theaters. The upcoming blockbuster will end the MCU as we know it, and wrap up the characters arcs from many of the OG Avengers. CinemaBlend’s Jeff McCobb recently spoke with The Russo Brothers, and asked the co-directors about their favorite arc in the MCU. Joe Russo piped in first, saying:

Cap obviously because we spent so much time with him. And he has gone on a very extreme journey, from First Avenger to Infinity War. He went from a patriot to an insurgent, that’s a very complicated arc.

This answer shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. The Russo Brothers joined the MCU in Captain America: Winter Soldier, which is widely considered one of the shared universe’s best outings. Since then, they became the architects of Phase Three, and utilized the title character in three more movies, including Endgame.

Joe Russo’s comment does make some valid points, as moviegoers have watched Steve Rogers have a pretty unbelievable journey throughout the last eight years. Captain America’s story spans decades, and featured him doing an about-face in regards to his belief system. So while the other Avengers have grown before our eyes, Cap arguably had the most seismic change this character.

In the same conversation with CinemaBlend at CinemaCon 2019, Anthony Russo echoed his brother’s sentiments, agreeing that Captain America was their favorite. He said,

I would have to say Cap. It’s just, we’ve been so focused on that character. He was our access point to the MCU as storytellers. Having been born, and grown up, and come of age during World War II. Having that all torn away from you, and waking up 70 years later. It’s a really profound journey that character’s been on. A lot of hardship. And a lot of nobility in his heart. And we’ve had a lot of fun trying to figure that character out over the years.

Once again, the Russo Brothers show that they’re great at working together. The co-directors have shared a singular vision for the MCU, and done the impossible with their work on large ensemble projects like Captain America: Civil War. And through it all, Chris Evans’ signature character has been their favorite Avenger to see onscreen.

You can’t blame The Russo Brothers for having some favoritism, as the Captain America franchise was how they were able to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and eventually rose to the top of the creative ladder. They brought a surprising amount of realism and grit to Captain America: The Winter Soldier, including stunning action sequences and plot twists that rocked the shared universe to its core.

Captain America: Civil War is another great feat, and their second go in the MCU. But rather than focusing solely on Steve Rogers, The Russo Brothers were given the challenge of bringing in most of MCU’s heroes to the playing field. It wasn’t an easy task, and moviegoers had some trepidations going into theaters. But the directors juggled a big cast, and fractured The Avengers as we know them.

You can check out our conversation with The Russo Brothers at CinemaCon 2019 below.

From the interview above, you can really see how much Captain America means to Joe and Anthony Russo. And while they’ve gotten to know all the major Marvel characters with their work on Civil War and the Avengers movies, Steve Rogers continues to be their favorite arc in the shared universe.

While plenty of moviegoers have their favorite Avenger, you can’t deny the validity of The Russo Brothers’ points. Just look at how his journey compares to other major Marvel characters. Tony Stark went from billionaire playboy to a superheroic leader, but he hasn’t changed that much since the first Iron Man movie ended. Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow continues to be a mystery, although that might change when her solo outing finally arrives. And while Thor is more responsible and humble, he’s still largely the same God of Thunder we met in his first flick.

The Russo Brothers might have a favorite in Captain America, but they’ve got plenty of character arcs to wrap up when Avengers: Endgame arrives next week. Many of the original Avengers actors are coming to the end of their contracts, so fans may finally bid goodbye to folks like Cap, Iron Man, and Thor. And given the high stakes after Thanos’ snap of death (aka The Decimation), it seems likely that at least one of those icons will end up being killed off.

In addition to ending certain character arcs, The Russo Brothers also have the responsibility of opening up narrative possibilities. While Marvel Studios hasn’t revealed their plans for Phase Four yet, the fandom is expecting quite a few sequels over the next few years. But with Black Panther, Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, and the Guardians all faded to dust as a result of Thanos’ victory, the future is currently unclear.

Most moviegoers assume that the dusted heroes will somehow be resurrected throughout the course of Avengers: Endgame. Exactly how that’ll be done is unclear, but it seems like Phase Four depends on it. Because unless the future is filled with prequels, it doesn’t seem like the MCU can continue on any other way.

Answers should finally come once Avengers: Endgame arrives in theaters on April 26th. In the meantime, fill out CinemaBlend’s Endgame death pool, and check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

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The Conjuring Inspiration Lorraine Warren Has Died At 92

Since the spine-chilling release of 2013’s The Conjuring, a successful franchise of sequels and spinoffs has ruled the horror genre. The interconnected universe is inspired by the lifelong work of Lorraine and Ed Warren (portrayed by Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson in the Conjuring films), who have investigated high-profile hauntings and chronicled supernatural phenomena. At 92, Lorraine passed away in her sleep on Thursday night.

The Warren’s own New England Society of Psychic Research announced the news Friday morning (via Fox 61). Lorraine was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut in 1927 and was a self-proclaimed clairvoyant and light trance medium. She and her husband founded the society in 1952 and conducted investigations into reports of paranormal activity, such as the Lindley Street poltergeist, West Point ghost and Amityville Horrors (which spawned 17 films).

The couple wrote 10 books together and traveled across the world lecturing on their findings. Ed Warren passed away in 2009 at 79 years old. One of their early cases was for Annabelle in 1968, a Raggedy Ann doll that was reportedly possessed by the spirit of a child named Annabelle Higgins. It inspired the Annabelle movies, which will continue with Annabelle Comes Home this summer. The upcoming film will see the first appearance of the Warren’s in the spinoff series, thus making it a homecoming for the Conjuring universe.

The Conjuring is based on their assistance to the Perron family in 1971, who experience frightening paranormal sighting in their farm home in Rhode Island. Lorraine Warren served as a consultant for the first movie and even had a cameo in it. She seemed to have bonded with the actress who has portrayed her for the past six years, as Vera Farmiga took to Twitter this morning to honor her following the news of her passing. Take a look:

The couple looked to be the gritty real-life Ghostbusters who certainly made a mark on the subject matter for many belovedly scary horror movies and various supernatural and psychic phenomena. The Warren’s also inspired the The Nun spinoff which became the highest-earning Conjuring film in 2018 when it racked up over $365 million worldwide. A sequel for The Nun is on the way, along with The Conjuring 3 and The Crooked Man.

Lorraine Warren’s death also comes on the same day of the release of The Curse of La Llorona, the first Conjuring spinoff film that does not tie to the couple’s paranormal investigations, though it finds itself in the universe’s timeline between the two Conjuring films.

Although Lorraine Warren was not a filmmaker herself, she will have a lasting impact on Hollywood as her experiences continue to capture the interest of audiences and be immortalized through the dramatic portrayal of her by Vera Farmiga, who will play Warren again in Annabelle Comes Home, coming to theaters on June 28.