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‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ Actress Kaya Scodelario on Playing Complicated Women

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 18:00
Kaya Scodelario reprises her role as Teresa, one of the heroines in “Maze Runner: The Death Cure,” which opens Jan. 26. Next for the British-born actress, who also starred in “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales,” is “Die in a Gunfight,” a modern-day action remake of Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet.” You’ve been […]

SAG Life Achievement Honoree Morgan Freeman Proves Life Can Begin at 50

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 18:00
When Morgan Freeman receives the Screen Actors Guild’s Life Achievement Award on Jan. 21, the honor will feel triumphantly inevitable. At 80 years old, his impressive resume includes 84 films, two Golden Globes, and an Oscar. But there’s a difference between Freeman and past winners, including Elizabeth Taylor and Gene Kelly. Freeman didn’t get his […]

‘The Post’s’ Liz Hannah, Josh Singer to Be Honored by Writers Guild

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 18:00
Screenwriters Liz Hannah and Josh Singer will receive the Writers Guild of America West’s 2018 Paul Selvin Award for their screenplay for “The Post.” The film chronicles the decision by the Washington Post to publish the Pentagon Papers in defiance of the Nixon administration in 1971. The award is given each year for the script […]

Variety to Live-Stream GLAAD Media Awards Nominations

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 17:53
For the first time, nominations for the annual GLAAD Media Awards will be live-streamed from Park City, Utah, at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. Announced by “Star Trek: Discovery” star Wilson Cruz and “Transparent” actress Trace Lysette, the nominations will be streamed on Variety’s Facebook page, directly from the DIRECTV Lounge presented by AT&T in Park […]

Joan Jett Rocks New ‘Bad Reputation’ Documentary at Sundance Film Festival

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 17:45
By many measures, Joan Jett is one of the most influential figures in rock history. But how many young fans who adore her proto-punk attitude would guess that one of the rocker’s early influences was … Liza Minnelli? “I wanted to be an actor before I fell in love with music,” Jett, 59, explains in an interview with Variety. […]

New Regency, See-Saw Films Partner for First-Look Deal

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 17:30
New Regency and production company See-Saw Films have signed a three-year, first-look development, financing, and production deal for films. Under the deal, announced on Thursday, See-Saw will develop movies to be financed by and co-produced with New Regency. In addition to development and production financing, the first look provides See-Saw with global studio distribution through […]

Four Disney-Managed YouTube Stars Launch Twitch Channels

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 17:00
Twitch will get exclusive content from four of Disney’s biggest YouTube content-creator partners — Markiplier, Jacksepticeye, LuzuGames and Strawburry17 — under a multiyear pact with Disney Digital Network. The creators are part of the Disney Digital Network, as part of Disney’s absorption of multichannel network Maker Studios. Each will manage their own channels on Twitch, […]

VR Startup Within Hires Former Discovery Exec Colin Decker as Its New COO (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 17:00
Within, the Los Angeles-based VR startup headed by director Chris Milk, has hired former Discovery Digital GM Colin Decker as its new COO. In his new role, Decker wants to help Within launch new revenue-generating projects in 2018. Most recently, Decker served as COO for the anime streaming service Crunchyroll, where he helped to grow […]

‘Bad Boys’-Inspired Series Starring Gabrielle Union Scores NBC Pilot Order

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 17:00
The untitled drama series based on Gabrielle Union’s “Bad Boys” character has been ordered to pilot at NBC. Union will star as Syd Burnett, her character from “Bad Boys 2.” In the show, she has left the DEA and now has a fresh start in her new job as an LAPD detective. She’s partnered with […]

TV Ratings: ‘9-1-1’ Builds Big on ‘X-Files’ Lead-In

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 16:59
“9-1-1” was up in both measures this week, building substantially on its lead in from “The X-Files,” according to Nielsen overnight data. Airing at 9 p.m. on Fox, “9-1-1” drew a 1.8 rating in adults 18-49 and 6.2 million viewers. That is up approximately 20 percent in the demo and 10 percent in viewers compared […]

‘Get Out,’ ‘Beauty and the Beast,’ ‘Wonder Woman’ Nominated for Publicists Awards

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 16:38
Hollywood publicists have nominated the teams behind Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast,” TriStar Pictures’ “Baby Driver,” Paramount’s “Daddy’s Home 2,” Universal’s “Get Out,” Twentieth Century Fox’s “The Greatest Showman,” and Warner Bros.’ “Wonder Woman” for the Maxwell Weinberg Publicist Showmanship Motion Picture Award. The awards will be presented on March 2 by the International Cinematographers […]

Playback: Dee Rees on ‘Mudbound’ and Her Trump-Inspired ‘Electric Dreams’ Episode

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 16:29
Welcome to “Playback,” a Variety podcast bringing you exclusive conversations with the talents behind many of today’s hottest films. It’s been nearly a year since Dee Rees’ “Mudbound” premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. With the latest edition of the Park City fest revving its engines, the film is still in the thick of […]

Sony Teams Up With Survios to Bring ‘Jumanji: The VR Adventure’ to Virtual Reality Arcades (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 16:00
Sony Pictures Virtual Reality has struck a partnership with Los Angeles-based virtual reality (VR) startup Survios to bring the recently-released “Jumanji: The VR Adventure” to VR arcades around the world. The studio’s virtual reality unit is also releasing the game on consumer VR headsets this month. Sony began distributing “Jumanji: The VR Adventure” in 50 VR […]

Scooter Braun, Manager of Justin Bieber, Kanye West, Ariana Grande, to Deliver Keynote at Midem Conference

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 15:59
Scooter Braun, founder of SB Projects and Variety’s Industry Hitmaker of 2017 will receive the first-ever Hall of Fame Award at the Midem conference in Cannes, France in June. Braun, whose management clients include Justin Bieber, Kanye West and Ariana Grande, will also give a keynote address. The award is “in recognition of his outstanding […]

Spotify Launches Visual-Podcast Strategy in Bid to Expand Beyond Music

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 15:58
Spotify is jumping deeper into the world of podcasting: The company has unveiled Spotlight, a new initiative to bring visually-enhanced audio programming about news, politics, sports and entertainment to the service. Spotify has pacts for the audio content with partners including BuzzFeed News, Cheddar, Crooked Media, Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner’s Lenny Letter, Gimlet Media, Genius, […]

EuropaCorp Being Circled By Potential Buyers, Investors (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 15:48
Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp is being circled by potential buyers and investors as it struggles to climb out from under a mountain of debt. Among the suitors, sources say, is business tycoon Tarak Ben Ammar, a shareholder in The Weinstein Co. and a board member of Vivendi. Hit by the disappointing performance of last year’s “Valerian and […]

Grammy Awards to Honor Victims of Gun Violence With Performance by Maren Morris, Eric Church, Brothers Osbourne

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 15:18
The Grammy Awards will honor the victims lost to gun violence and terrorism at various live music events with a special performance by three artists who appeared at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas, Brothers Osborne, Eric Church and Maren Morris. During a shooting that took place at that festival, 51 people were […]

Simon Pegg, Nick Frost Talk Stolen Picture and Their First Series, ‘Truth Seekers’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 15:14
British film and TV stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost formed indie producer Stolen Picture last year, and with their first movie coming out this year, a TV series in the offing, and a growing development slate, they talked to Variety about their plans to take their inimitable brand of comedy and drama to the big […]

Will Packer Media Acquires Women’s Lifestyle Site xoNecole

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 15:00
Entertainment production firm Will Packer Media has acquired xoNecole, a lifestyle website focused on urban millennial women created and run by blogger Necole Kane. WPM founder and CEO Will Packer, whose producing credits include “Girls Trip,” “Ride Along,” “Think Like a Man” and “Straight Outta Compton,” said the addition of xoNecole ( is aimed at […]

Justin Timberlake Brings #MeToo, Trump, Racism, David Bowie Into Dystopic New Video for ‘Supplies’

Variety - Front Page - Thu, 01/18/2018 - 14:58
Despite the down-home vibe Justin Timberlake has described for his forthcoming album “Man of the Woods,” the songs and videos he’s released thus far are futurist, from the electronic throb of the first track “Filthy” to the latest, “Supplies,” which he dropped this morning. The song is a Pharrell-helmed, trap-ist groove that has a much […]
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