John C. Reilly Had An Extra Role In The Development Of Ralph Breaks The Internet

John C. Reilly is best known as an Academy Award-nominated actor, but he has proven that he can do a lot more than that. In recent years he has been additionally active as both a writer and a producer, taking a stronger creative role in the projects of which he is a part. As it turns out, this extends to Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Ralph Breaks The Internet as well, as while he’s not specifically credited in the movie, he was a presence during film’s story development, primarily providing basically a first-hand perspective for the titular character. He recently told me,

As noted, John C. Reilly had an “additional story material by” credit on the first Wreck-It Ralph, and evidently it was a positive enough experience that he was brought in to do similar work for Ralph Breaks The Internet. The subject came up earlier this month when I sat down with the actor/writer during the new movie’s Los Angeles press junket, when I asked if he felt he had a stronger creative hand in the development of the sequel. He explained that the experience wasn’t largely different from the making of the first film, but added that it was ultimately important in terms of his personal investment into the project.

Reilly, of course, voices the titular Wreck-It Ralph in the new movie, and the majority of the narrative is dedicated to his personal growth as a character (along with Sarah Silverman’s Vanellope von Schweetz). Rather than just standing on the sidelines and reading lines presented to him in a recording booth, the actor instead opted to get heavily involved with the process and ensure that Ralph’s evolution was natural and made sense. Said Reilly,

And it’s worth noting that this behind-the-scenes presence isn’t just a one-off thing for John C. Reilly. Not many films are developed like the projects at Walt Disney Animation Studios, written by teams and constantly being constructed and deconstructed, but the actor/writer/producer is still finding ways to be more involved with the movies and shows of which he chooses to be a part. That’s essentially where his head is at this point is in his career, as he explained,

You can watch John C. Reilly discuss his behind-the-scenes contributions on Ralph Breaks The Internet and more by clicking play on the video below!

Just a few months ago John C. Reilly was credited as both an actor and producer for Jacques Audiard’s The Sisters Brothers, and he’s currently developing a new series called Moonbase 8 (which is an original creation). Right now, though, you can Ralph Breaks The Internet on big screens everywhere, as the movie is now out in wide release.

Dick Van Dyke Had The Perfect Reaction To Mary Poppins Returns Being Announced

We were all probably a little surprised when we learned Mary Poppins was getting a sequel, but nobody had a better reaction than Dick Van Dyke. One of the stars of the original film says he was thrilled to learn that Mary Poppins Returns was being produced, but, ultimately, there was one important question that he needed to ask. Was there a part for him? Recently, Mary Poppins Returns co-star Lin-Manuel Miranda asked Van Dyke what he thought when he heard about the film, and the response was classic…

The answer was probably something along the lines of “we thought you’d never ask.” When Dick Van Dyke asks if he can be in Mary Poppins Returns, the correct response is to just say yes and figure the rest out later.

Luckily, the new movie has the perfect role for Dick Van Dyke. So much so that it was quite likely that if he hadn’t asked to be in the movie first, he was eventually going to be asked to return anyway. The actor had two roles in the original Mary Poppins as he played bank chairman Mr. Dawes Sr. beneath makeup and a fake beard in addition to the more famous role of Burt the chimneysweep. In the sequel, he’ll play Mr. Dawes Jr., the son of the bank chairman, who has not gotten on in years himself.

The role that’s the equivalent to Burt will be handled by a new character played by Lin-Manuel Miranda. With an only slightly less over the top accent.

There’s a clear family resemblance between the Dawes father and son, which makes sense, though the make-up work that was necessary to make Dick Van Dyke look like his previous character had a certain irony to it, considering the number of years that have passed since the first film. As Dick Van Dyke explained on ABC News.

Dick Van Dyke was 91 when production on Mary Poppins Returns was underway but he’ll be 93 by the time it comes out, with his birthday in mid-December. As hilarious as it may have been to have to put Van Dyke in makeup to play his role, the moment is sure to be one of the highlights of Mary Poppins Returns for all of the fans of the original. In that film, it was difficult to tell that Van Dyke was playing Mr. Dawes. It’s a bit more obvious now.

The other reason that Dick Van Dyke’s appearance will likely be memorable is that his scene is apparently quite emotional. People, including the director, were reportedly crying on the set following the performance of a speech that Van Dyke gives. Bring your tissues when you see Mary Poppins Returns this Christmas.

What Would It Take For Adonis To Get Back Into The Ring For Creed III?

Warning: spoilers for Creed II are in play. If you’re not caught up with the film, bookmark this page, and come back once you’re current.

By the end of Creed II, Adonis “Donnie” Creed defeats Viktor Drago in the film’s climactic fight in Russia, and the victory couldn’t be sweeter. After a first attempt left the newly crowned heavyweight champion severely beaten, and in need of recovery, the rousing final battle delivers the victory he’d been searching for earlier in the film.

But with this victory in the bag, partially thanks to his fiancee Bianca’s understanding that it was something he had to get out of his system, one has to wonder just what would bring Adonis back into the ring for a potential Creed III. CinemaBlend got to ask Michael B. Jordan himself where he felt the stakes would have to be set for the sequel, and he had this to say:

Not knowing where to go for a Creed III story may sound like a disappointment to some. However, considering the history of the Rocky franchise, it’s also a rather refreshing development. As much as this new film sets the table for some interesting pathways to a third film in the Creed series, it is realistically too soon to peg any sort of story out.

Creed II is poised to continue the good name of the franchise, and bring in a hell of a Thanksgiving result. So the conventional approach would be to, obviously, develop a sequel quickly and fast track it into production. But from the word go, the Creed series has been both eager and cautious to move forward in its storytelling.

After all, it took until 2017 to get any sort of indication that a sequel would be officially forming, and that’s two whole years after Creed brought the world of Rocky back to life. Ultimately, the challenge for Creed III would be the same as the one that everyone, especially Michael B. Jordan, faced when coming back for Creed II.

The next film has to serve a purpose that isn’t cheesy, maintains the freshness of the franchise, and above all else, keeps audience and film-maker alike interested with an organic premise. With Adonis getting pretty badly beaten in the first match with Viktor Drago, only to finally beat him in a similarly grueling rematch, it’d take a really good reason to bring this new father into the ring once again.

It’s something you can even see in watching footage of Jordan’s body language talking about a potential sequel, which you can see below:

Should Creed III happen in the near, or even not so near, future, it sounds like Michael B. Jordan won’t be signing on unless there’s a good reason to proceed. Finding that good reason is going to take some time, though there are certainly some threads left open for Creed III to potentially make that trilogy magic happen. For now though, you can enjoy Creed II, which is in theaters now, ready to pump you up for a champion’s Thanksgiving.

TV Land Just Cancelled Its Last Scripted Series

Technically, TV Land started producing its own original content back in 2004, with celeb-driven unscripted series like Chasing Farrah and I Pity the Fool. However, it was in 2010 that the network kicked off with the star-studded Hot in Cleveland, bringing Betty White back to pop culture’s forefront. That kicked off a boom of other sitcoms led by big TV stars from the past four decades, such as (George) Lopez, Kirstie (Alley) and Happily Divorced (with Fran Drescher).

Green Book Review

Think back to Natalie Portman in Black Swan, Hilary Swank in Million Dollar Baby, J.K. Simmons in Whiplash or, you know, Daniel Day Lewis in virtually every film he’s ever made. This occurs during Green Book, with both Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali disappearing so seamlessly into their roles that you feel like you are watching the actual men on which this story is based. So while the story may be predictable, the performances never are, and they in turn elevate the material.

It’s the 1960s in a racially divided United States of America. Frank “Tony Lip” Vallelonga (Viggo Mortensen) earns paychecks bouncing rowdy patrons from Manhattan’s famed Copacabana nightclub. But the establishment is about to shut down for renovations, meaning “Lip” needs to find a new line of work to provide for his caring wife, Dolores (Linda Cardellini), and cute kids.

Opportunity presents itself in the form of Donald Shirley (Mahershala Ali), celebrated concert pianist and acclaimed composer whose about to embark on a tour of the Deep South. Remember, though, that this is the 1960s, and the Civil Rights movement hasn’t implemented much change in our society. Shirley needs a driver and a bodyguard, and he believes that Vallelonga is the right man for the job.

The Green Book of the title refers to an actual historical object, a guide that African Americans were asked to use when traveling to help them find establishments that allowed them to stay there. The South was still deeply segregated at the time of Don Shirley’s tour, so both men knew they were likely going to encounter resistance. How they handle it becomes the driving force behind Green Book, the movie.

These events actually happened. The Green Book screenplay is co-written by Nick Vallelonga, son of “Tony Lip,” and while it’s likely been Hollywoodized to work as an intended crowd pleaser, these men really did stare down systematic racism to make a point — that Donald Shirley deserved a place of honor in the very same establishments that he was being invited to play.

The lessons of Green Book are predictable, though that doesn’t make them less worthy of retelling. Using the time-tested odd-couple format, the refined and distinguished Shirley transfers culture and dignity to the slovenly Vallelonga, while the latter teaches the pianist to appreciate pop musicians like Little Richard. The duo might not change too many minds in the backwoods South, but they rub off on each other in sweet and sentimental ways.

Side note: Director Peter Farrelly — yes, one half of the comedy directors The Farrelly Brothers — balances drama and comedy here, but too often succumbs to the “Ignorant Southerners” cliché, when it wasn’t necessary. The portrayal of the South in segregated times is straight out of the Hollywood Playbook, making Green Book as subtle and nuanced as you might expect a movie by the director of Stuck on You and There’s Something About Mary can be. While I could imagine that Don Shirley and Frank Vallelonga encountered resistance from Southern restaurants and clothing establishments who weren’t ready to serve an African-American client, the fact that they meet stubborn bigots are every turn gets to be a little heavy-handed and on the nose in the otherwise dexterous Green Book.

That being said, the performances of the two men surpass any tonal missteps in Green Book, and are worthy of the price of admission to Peter Farrelly’s movie. It’s remarkable how good the actors are in their lead roles, considering they each nail polar-opposite portrayals. Mahershala Ali is quiet and calm in his space, calculating every movement and debating every turn of phrase so that Donald Shirley is a credible human character, not a stereotyped fussy snob. Ali also gets the film’s most beautiful moment, when Shirley stands on the side of the road and sees Southern workers tending to a field. In the moment, he sees how close he might be to being in their spot. But they also see the possibility they have of eventually being in his spot, and all of this is conveyed with no dialogue.

On the flip side, it’s nearly grotesque the length that Viggo Mortensen slips to physically play Frank “Tony Lip” Vallelonga. It’s not just the weight gain (though that’s significant). It’s the absence of couth that we’ve come to accept from Mortensen, a stylish performer who embraces the street in every scene of this movie. It’s a remarkable transformation, and one that will have him in a tuxedo on Oscar night, waiting to see if his name might be called as the winner of the Best Actor trophy.

It’s a pleasure watching both men work here. Green Book may be shooting fish in a barrel as it tries to reach obvious conclusions regarding race relations. But the “fish” are still important, and the “barrel” is still relevant, more than 50 years after this story actually took place. And that’s saying something.

Rating:
movie reviewed rating
3.5/5

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Sarah Michelle Gellar Apologizes After Controversial Thanksgiving Lingerie Post

Thanksgiving is all about sharing and caring. Sarah Michelle Gellar tried to honor that tradition by sharing a posting a humorous picture of herself in lingerie on Instagram, complete with a joke in the caption section. But it wasn’t well received. There were many people who were offended by the post, believing that the Buffy actress was fat shaming in her holiday-themed post. Taken aback by these claims, Sarah Michelle Gellar quickly apologized.

Suffice to say, Sarah Michelle Gellar’s lingerie post wasn’t particularly well-received by everyone visiting her Instagram page. Some people found the exposing picture to be in rather poor taste for the family-related November holiday. Plus, few followers felt she was fat-shaming as well.

The post was meant to be comical in nature, as the actress wrote in the caption section that she planned to post that picture of herself all around the house to assure herself that she won’t overeat on Thursday. But that wasn’t how it was read by some people in the comments, and Sarah Michelle Gellar felt the need to apologize.

Later, Sarah Michelle Gellar went back onto social media to issue an apology, claiming that fat-shaming “could not be further from my intentions.”

While the joke from Sarah Michelle Gellar was meant to be harmless, silly and self-deprecating in nature, that wasn’t how it was received by many people– and commenters weren’t afraid to voice their objections. The Scooby-Doo actress wanted to take the time to clarify what she meant by the ultimately-controversial post, and it should hopefully settle the unsettled waters that are currently found on her Instagram page.

Everyone slips up every once-in-awhile, and Sarah Michelle Gellar seemingly had one of those moments this week. She, therefore, took the time to try to clarify herself and apologize for any offense she may have caused.

Time will tell how Sarah Michelle Gellar’s apology will be received. While the Cruel Intentions actress didn’t mean ill-malice by the picture and what she said, it was taken the wrong way by many people and they were hurt and dismayed that the popular film and television actress would fat shame — if unintentionally. Lately, there have been more-than-a-few celebrities who’ve found themselves in hot water on social media, including Armie Hammer.

We’ll keep you posted on the newest updates and developments in this ongoing story with Sarah Michelle Gellar. Meanwhile, for the latest scoop in television, film, video games, pop culture, and a whole lot more, you can be sure to check back with CinemaBlend.

Aquaman Director James Wan Assures Fans The Trailers Aren’t Spoiling Too Much

Movie trailers are a funny thing. While cinephiles and fans are eager for new footage of upcoming blockbusters, they’re also a double edged sword. Because if too much is given away in the trailer, it can potentially spoil the film’s contents. DC’s Aquaman has been accused of this, as the two trailers seemingly gave away the plot of James Wan’s superhero flick.

But that might not be true, at least according to the acclaimed horror director. James Wan regularly fields questions on his social media accounts, especially Twitter. When one user tweeted at him (in all caps) about showing too much of Aquaman in the marketing materials, Wan swiftly responded, saying:

Well, that’s a relief. Because while Aquaman‘s trailers have been sweeping and large in scope, there’s apparently plenty up James Wan’s aquatic sleeves. So rest easy DC fans, because Arthur Curry’s first solo movie is still going to surprise us.

James Wan’s newest tweet will no doubt please the DC fans out there, who are hoping that the still blooming shared universe will get another critical hit with Aquaman. Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman is so far the only DC blockbuster met with good reviews, and fans were hoping that James Wan’s acclaimed vision and directing style would help bring Aquaman’s world to life.

The vision Jame Wan brings to his work can largely be seen by his impact on the horror genre. His movies Insidious and The Conjuring both brought totally unique visuals to the silver screen, terrifying audiences in the process. Furthermore, his creations have spawned massive franchise like the Saw movies and Conjuring shared universe.

Furious 7 was also directed by James Wan, proving that he wasn’t a filmmaker bound to one genre. The Fast and the Furious movies are massively expensive, so the director has the experience to back up a DC blockbuster like Aquaman. In fact, he’s bringing on frequent collaborators like Patrick Wilson (The Conjuring), while also making liberal changes to how Atlantis was set up in Justice League.

The pressure is on for James Wan to deliver a satisfying new blockbuster with Aquaman. DC needs a win badly, allowing for momentum to build with upcoming releases like Shazam!, Joker, and Birds of Prey. Jason Momoa’s Aquaman was a welcomed breathe of fresh air in Justice League, so his future in the DC Universe likely depends on the solo movie’s performance. Luckily, pre-sale tickets are selling like hot cakes.

Aquaman will arrive in theaters on December 21, 2018. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

5 Vampire Diaries And Originals Characters We’d Like To See On Legacies

Since Legacies is the joint spinoff of The Vampire Diaries and The Originals, it would make sense for more past characters to pop up on The CW show. So far, the list of Vampire Diaries’ and Originals’ returnees include Alaric Saltzman, Hope Mikaelson, twins Josie and Lizzie Saltzman, Dorian Williams, Sheriff Matt Donovan, and Jeremy Gilbert. Legacies has only just gotten started with Season 1, but here are five more familiar faces we soon hope to see in Mystic Falls.

Caroline Forbes-Salvatore

This is the most obvious choice, and if Caroline never does show up, it’s going to be awkward as hell. Caroline should be a main character of this spinoff, as the one who technically owns The Salvatore Boarding School for the Young & Gifted, and mother of Lizzie and Josie Saltzman. She has already been name-dropped on Legacies at this point, and we know Alaric and the twins have different information on her whereabouts.

Alaric’s intel is right; Caroline isn’t recruiting for the school, she’s out on a mission directly related to the twins’ longterm survival. Fans have speculated that Caroline might be trying to find a way to stop the twins from having to undergo the Gemini Coven Merge ritual. Candice King played Caroline on both TVD and The Originals, and we hope to see her at some point on Legacies — if not in Season 1, then in Season 2 (if there is one).

Kai Parker

It feels like we’re not done with Malachai “Kai” Parker. Kai (Chris Wood) is Lizzie and Josie Saltzman’s biological uncle, and executive producer Julie Plec recently brought up his name as a reminder that the twins are related to him by blood, so there’s “danger” there. Kai is also connected to Alaric in that Kai killed his own twin sister Jo on the day of her wedding to Alaric. In the process, Kai tried to kill the twins Jo was carrying.

Kai is the last leader of the Gemini Coven. Josie and Lizzie survived that attempt on their lives, so they are also part of the coven. It seems like there’s more story to be told with Kai, especially since he is technically not dead. He was last seen banished in a Prison World, thanks to Bonnie helping Lizzie and Josie put him there. On that note…

Bonnie Bennett

Several current characters have history with Bonnie (Kat Graham) — starting with her BFF Caroline and continuing with Matt, Jeremy, Kai, and the twins. Bonnie was last seen in The Vampire Diaries series finale, choosing to leave town to travel the world while Caroline decided to stay in Mystic Falls and run the school. At some point, it would make sense for Bonnie to either return home for good or just make a visit back home in her many travels.

Either way, Bonnie would be a great asset at the school, maybe helping the twins with their Siphoner powers and aiding them in protection against anything Uncle Kai might plan. That may include helping Caroline find a way to stop a Gemini Coven Merge ritual, if that’s part of what Caroline is doing right now.

Freya Mikaelson

I’d be happy for any of Hope Mikaelson’s relatives to show up — Rebekah, who was her guardian at one point; or Uncle Kol, Marcel, etc. Hope actress Danielle Rose Russell wasn’t sure if any Mikaelson family members would be joining Legacies, but the door was left open. Powerful witch Aunt Freya (Riley Voelkel) became something of a mentor to Hope as she got older on The Originals, so it would make sense for her to reach out to the teen. Or vice versa.

The Originals ended with Freya asking Vincent to be the father of her children with Keelin. So she’s out there starting a family, and it would be nice for them to visit Hope in Mystic Falls. Or Legacies could take a road trip and have Hope visit her family.

Damon (and Elena) Salvatore

Ian Somerhalder may never return to the role of Damon for Legacies, since he’s busy with his new vampire show, but it would make sense to see him again. The Vampire Diaries ended with Damon as a new human, starting a family with Elena. Dr. Elena Salvatore even opened a practice in Mystic Falls. Damon and Elena should be in town, and it would be nice to see them — especially Damon, since the Salvatore school bears his name and includes the Stefan Salvatore memorial library in honor of his brother.

Damon gave Caroline the boarding house for the school, but it’s not like he’s a stranger. If he and Elena are still in town, they should visit. It’s just a matter of convincing Ian Somerhalder or Nina Dobrev to return to The CW.

So far, all we know for sure is that Legacies plans to give fans more Easter eggs, and some location nostalgia by returning to familiar sets from The Originals. Other than that, the door is open for more TVD/Originals returns, and we’ll have to wait to see who walks through.

Which Vampire Diaries and Originals characters would you most like to see on Legacies? The spinoff airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on The CW. Keep up with more shows to watch in our fall TV schedule.

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Today Show Ratings Rise As Megyn Kelly Nears Giant Settlement With NBC

If you were Megyn Kelly, how would you feel about this? Since she lost her Megyn Kelly Today show, the third hour of Today has had more viewers and a boost of about 10 percent in the key ratings demographic.

But if Megyn Kelly feels any burn from that loss, she can console herself with more than $30 million. That’s the value left on her three-year $69 million contract with NBC News, and she’s expected to walk away with all of it.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Megyn Kelly’s NBC News exit deal could be finalized as early as next week. It has been less than a month since NBC canceled her morning show, with that pink slip coming just days after the host’s controversial comments on wearing blackface in Halloween costumes.

Since then, Nielsen ratings and overall viewers have been kind to Today. It’s not clear yet whether the higher numbers will last, or if more fans are watching out of temporary curiosity to see how NBC handles Megyn Kelly’s departure. For now, the third hour is being hosted by a rotating group of anchors, and it has seen spikes in both demo ratings and the total audience.

As Variety noted, Megyn Kelly Today‘s last week on air had 675,000 viewers between ages 25 and 54, and roughly 2.52 million viewers overall. Compare that to last week, when the post-Kelly third hour had 741,000 viewers between 25 and 54 and more than 2.63 million viewers overall.

Whether connected to Megyn Kelly or not, the first two hours of Today have also gotten a boost. In the past three weeks, Today has had more overall viewers than ABC’s Good Morning America. Usually, GMA has the larger overall audience.

Today has been through a lot of changes in the past year, beyond Megyn Kelly. Matt Lauer was ousted in dramatic fashion, leaving Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb as the flagship anchors. Now the morning lineup has shifted again with Kelly’s departure.

For Megyn Kelly, this is just the latest shakeup in her high-profile career. She was a Fox News anchor from 2004 to 2017 before leaving the network for NBC News. Long before her blackface comments, Kelly’s morning show was struggling in the ratings for NBC. Her previous NBC show, Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly, faced backlash for her interviews with Vladimir Putin and Alex Jones.

On the upside, Oscar winner Charlize Theron is set to play Megyn Kelly in the upcoming film on embattled Fox News founder Roger Ailes. That has to be an ego boost for Kelly, if nothing else.

It’s not clear what Megyn Kelly will do next, but there’s speculation that she may return to cable news before the 2020 election. Or she could just retire now and live off all of that money.

Creed II’s Director Likes Tessa Thompson’s Character A Lot More Than Adrian

The Creed movies may be a continuation of the Rocky franchise, but that doesn’t mean that they simply repeat the same tired tropes over and over again. The Creed movies are their own movies as well, and one of the easiest ways to see that is the way that Creed treats its female characters. While Rocky’s Adrian is an iconic character in her own right, the fact is that she didn’t really do much in the Rocky films. This is why Creed II director Steven Caple Jr. prefers Creed‘s Bianca played by Tessa Thompson. He feels there’s just more than she can do in the movie and more she’ll be able to do in the future. According to Caple Jr…

Steven Caple Jr.’s reference, which Tessa Thompson apparently made on the set of Creed II, is a reference to Rocky II, a movie which apparently had so little for Talia Shire’s Adrian to do that the plot just had her spend a large chunk of the film unconscious in the hospital to act as motivation for the hero.

Even when Adrian was awake, she didn’t actually do that much in the franchise. She was much more focused on Rocky’s career as a boxer and acting as his support structure rather than being much of a character of her own.

Tessa Thompson’s character is a bit different in that regard. In the first Creed film, Bianca actually doesn’t support Adonis’ decision to be boxer, marking a stark contrast between her and Adrian. While Bianca will spend some portion of Creed II pregnant based on the trailers, Steven Caple Jr. tells Uproxx that he assured Tessa Thompson she wouldn’t spend the movie as a simple background character due to the pregnancy.

Of course, the other thing this comment does is presuppose that there will be a Creed III and Creed IV down the road. Certainly, if Creed II is successful, then there’s a pretty solid chance that was going to happen. Still, it seems that everybody from the director to the stars were talking about another film as if it’s an expectation even while making the new one.

Tessa Thompson is becoming one of the biggest stars in Hollywood in recent years and it’s great to know that if and when there are more Creed movies, the franchise will continue to use her talents appropriately, giving her stories that are worth telling.

Creed II is in theaters now.