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Blueberries, Paul Feig and Signor Baron Cohen.

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"Why is it me God has asked? I am nothing."
Trailer of the day: For "The Nativity Story," here. And weird, weird, weird. Catherine Hardwicke of "Thirteen" and "Lords of Dogtown" directs (in an interview with  Kevin Maher in the London Times she half-jokingly calls the film "the third of her teenage movie trilogy"); Keisha Castle-Hughes and the rest of the cast speak in a generic and apparently biblical accent. And the whole thing is so very "The Passion: The Prequel."

Elsewhere, the Weinstein Company picks up Wong Kar Wai‘s "My Blueberry Nights" (via Gregg Goldstein at the Hollywood Reporter):

"Ten years ago, Harvey Weinstein played a key role in introducing my work to American audiences with ‘Chungking Express,’ " said Wong, who was the jury president at May’s Festival de Cannes. "It’s a pleasure to be reunited with an old friend at this new phase of my career."

Well, until Weinstein decides to chop the film down to 85 minutes, redo the opening credits and change the title to "The Enforcer." Other Asian film news: Lifesize Entertainment will release Kim Ki-duk‘s plastic surgery romance "Time" in the US (via Grady Hendrix at Kaiju Shakedown); Yoshimitsu Morita is directing a remake of "Sanjuro," using the original screenplay — Yuji Oda will take on the Toshiro Mifune role (via KFCC).

From Variety (when did Variety become free, by the way?): Michael Fleming reports that Sacha Baron Cohen will indeed play Signor Adolfo Pirelli in Tim Burton‘s "Sweeney Todd" adaptation (but will he sing?); Katja Hofmann writes that Thomas Kretschmann (Captain Wilm Hosenfeld in "The Pianist" and Hermann Fegelein in "Downfall") will play Nazi mass murderer Adolf Eichmann in biopic "Eichmann," to be directed by Robert Young. This will be Kretschmann’s seventh film outing as a Nazi. Also, Steven Zeitchik reports that Magnolia is in talks to pick up James Scurlock‘s snappy doc on credit card debt, "Maxed Out," which we totally missed at SXSW last year.

Finally, Borys Kit at the Hollywood Reporter writes that Paul Feig, creator of our beloved "Freaks and Geeks," will rewrite and direct "Smooth Operator" for Warner Brothers:

The story follows a CIA agent/debonair ladies man who must train a computer nerd with less than stellar lady skills so that the guy can seduce a female operative.

"It’s like a high-tech version of ‘Cyrano,’ " Feig said, "or like a ‘Hitch’-meets-‘Rush Hour.’ "

Feig’s plan is to make the script bigger in scope, with more physical comedy, something that he, as the creator of the much-loved quirky character show "Freaks and Geeks" or his work on "Undeclared," is not necessarily known for.

Feig just completed "Unaccompanied Minors" (which looks godawful) for Warner.

+ Trailer: The Nativity Story (Apple)
+ Who cares if they know the ending? (London Times)
+ Weinstein Co. picks ‘Blueberry’
(Hollywood Reporter)
+ Remake of Kurosawa’s Sanjuro begins filming (KFCC)
+ Cohen to cut chops on ‘Sweeney Todd’ (Variety)
+ Kretschmann to play Eichmann (Variety)
+ Magnolia gets ‘Out’ (Variety)
+ Writer-helmer Feig getting ‘Smooth’ job at Warners (Hollywood Reporter)


Hacked In

Funny or Die Is Taking Over

FOD TV comes to IFC every Saturday night.

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We’ve been fans of Funny or Die since we first met The Landlord. That enduring love makes it more than logical, then, that IFC is totally cool with FOD hijacking the airwaves every Saturday night. Yes, that’s happening.

The appropriately titled FOD TV looks like something pulled from public access television in the nineties. Like lo-fi broken-antenna reception and warped VHS tapes. Equal parts WTF and UHF.

Get ready for characters including The Shirtless Painter, Long-Haired Businessmen, and Pigeon Man. They’re aptly named, but for a better sense of what’s in store, here’s a taste of ASMR with Kelly Whispers:

Watch FOD TV every Saturday night during IFC’s regularly scheduled movies.


Wicked Good

See More Evil

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is on Hulu.

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GIFs via Giphy

Okay, so you missed the entire first season of Stan Against Evil. There’s no shame in that, per se. But here’s the thing: Season 2 is just around the corner and you don’t want to lag behind. After all, Season 1 had some critical character development, not to mention countless plot twists, and a breathless finale cliffhanger that’s been begging for resolution since last fall. It also had this:


The good news is that you can catch up right now on Hulu. Phew. But if you aren’t streaming yet, here’s a basic primer…

Willards Mill Is Evil

Stan spent his whole career as sheriff oblivious to the fact that his town has a nasty curse. Mostly because his recently-deceased wife was secretly killing demons and keeping Stan alive.

Demons Really Want To Kill Stan

The curse on Willards Mill stipulates that damned souls must hunt and kill each and every town sheriff, or “constable.” Oh, and these demons are shockingly creative.


They Also Want To Kill Evie

Why? Because Evie’s a sheriff too, and the curse on Willard’s Mill doesn’t have a “one at a time” clause. Bummer, Evie.

Stan and Evie Must Work Together

Beating the curse will take two, baby, but that’s easier said than done because Stan doesn’t always seem to give a damn. Damn!


Beware of Goats

It goes without saying for anyone who’s seen the show: If you know that ancient evil wants to kill you, be wary of anything that has cloven feet.


Season 2 Is Lurking

Scary new things are slouching towards Willards Mill. An impending darkness descending on Stan, Evie and their cohort – eviler evil, more demony demons, and whatnot. And if Stan wants to survive, he’ll have to get even Stanlier.

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is now streaming right now on Hulu.



Reminders that the ’90s were a thing

"The Place We Live" is available for a Jessie Spano-level binge on Comedy Crib.

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GIFs via Giphy

Unless you stopped paying attention to the world at large in 1989, you are of course aware that the ’90s are having their pop cultural second coming. Nobody is more acutely aware of this than Dara Katz and Betsy Kenney, two comedians who met doing improv comedy and have just made their Comedy Crib debut with the hilarious ’90s TV throwback series, The Place We Live.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Dara: It’s everything you loved–or loved to hate—from Melrose Place and 90210 but condensed to five minutes, funny (on purpose) and totally absurd.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Betsy: “Hey Todd, why don’t you have a sip of water. Also, I think you’ll love The Place We Live because everyone has issues…just like you, Todd.”


IFC: When you were living through the ’90s, did you think it was television’s golden age or the pop culture apocalypse?

Betsy: I wasn’t sure I knew what it was, I just knew I loved it!

Dara: Same. Was just happy that my parents let me watch. But looking back, the ’90s honored The Teen. And for that, it’s the golden age of pop culture. 

IFC: Which ’90s shows did you mine for the series, and why?

Betsy: Melrose and 90210 for the most part. If you watch an episode of either of those shows you’ll see they’re a comedic gold mine. In one single episode, they cover serious crimes, drug problems, sex and working in a law firm and/or gallery, all while being young, hot and skinny.

Dara: And almost any series we were watching in the ’90s, Full House, Saved By the Bell, My So Called Life has very similar themes, archetypes and really stupid-intense drama. We took from a lot of places. 


IFC: How would you describe each of the show’s characters in terms of their ’90s TV stereotype?

Dara: Autumn (Sunita Mani) is the femme fatale. Robin (Dara Katz) is the book worm (because she wears glasses). Candace (Betsy Kenney) is Corey’s twin and gives great advice and has really great hair. Corey (Casey Jost) is the boy next door/popular guy. Candace and Corey’s parents decided to live in a car so the gang can live in their house. 
Lee (Jonathan Braylock) is the jock.

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Dara: Because everyone’s feeling major ’90s nostalgia right now, and this is that, on steroids while also being a totally new, silly thing.

Delight in the whole season of The Place We Live right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. It’ll take you back in all the right ways.