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Harvey Weinstein Considers PG-13 Cut of “The King’s Speech”

Harvey Weinstein Considers PG-13 Cut of “The King’s Speech” (photo)

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As King George VI might say in one of his profanity-laden stuttering rants, his movie’s about to get buggered. The Los Angeles Times reports that Harvey Weinstein is considering recutting “The King’s Speech”after the Academy Awards in order to get it a PG-13 rating:

“[He wants to re-edit] the movie to excise coarse language and secure a lower rating that will open “The King’s Speech” to a broader audience. Weinstein, whose New York-based studio The Weinstein Co. released the film, said he is talking with director Tom Hooper about trimming the profanity that earned the film an R rating in order to attain a PG-13 or even PG. He is eyeing the success of the movie in Great Britain, where a 12-and-over rating has helped it to top the box office chart for the last three weekends, beating such bigger-budget pictures as “Gulliver’s Travels” and “The Green Hornet.”

“The British numbers are huge because the rating lets families see the movie together,” said Weinstein. “Tom and I are trying to find a unique way to do this that keeps his vision of the movie.”

Hooper could not be reached for comment.”

Let’s get this out of the way first: “The King’s Speech”‘s R rating for, as the MPAA puts it, “some language” was ludicrous to begin with. A couple of jags of naughty words aimed at no one in particular with zero sexual implication or malice don’t constitute, in my mind, grounds to preclude younger viewers. They can hear any of these words on the Internet in the amount of time it takes them to type them into Google. If you ask me, “The King’s Speech” should have been rated PG-13 all along.

A lot of movies trim their content for lower ratings and wider audiences. But most of them do it before they’ve been released. They submit a cut to the MPAA, they receive a conditional rating and then they either accept it, cut their movie, or appeal. The only recent example I can recall of a movie being recut after it’s already been released is Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ,” which made $370 million in the U.S. with an R rating but just $500,000 one year later as “The Passion Recut.” Part of the problem? Gibson’s softer “Passion,” which removed about five minutes of violence, was still too tough for a PG-13 rating, so he released it unrated, a decision that comes with its own set of financial problems.

I’ve got no beef with The Weinsteins cutting their own movie (Tom Hooper might, but I don’t). It’s their movie, they can do what they want with it. But it is funny to note that just one month ago, the Weinsteins were waging a fierce battle with the MPAA over another film in an attempt not to cut something. They successfully appealed “Blue Valentine”‘s NC-17 rating down to an R without having to make any changes to the film’s sexual content. If they’re not pleased with “The King’s Speech”‘s $60 million, they must be really pissed about “Blue Valentine”‘s $4.5 million. Can a oral sex free “Blue Valentine” be far behind?

There’s one big hole in TWC’s logic, too. Weinstein says the British grosses for the movie are so high because the film has a lower rating that “lets families see the movie together.” And I’m sure that England’s 12 rating has helped in that regard. But “The King’s Speech”‘s R-rating doesn’t prevent parents from taking their kids to see it; it certainly didn’t prevent parents from taking their kids to see “The Passion of the Christ.” He’s not considering another alternative: that British audiences are more interested in “The King’s Speech” because it’s about their king and their own history. In the same way that British audiences are probably less inclined to care about a film about a specifically American subject — a great politician, baseball, Snooki — American audiences are probably less inclined to care about a specifically British subject, namely a stuttering king.

I say this as a fan of “The King’s Speech.” I enjoyed the movie. But the biggest difference between an R and a PG-13 is that kids can go see it on their own. And I have a hard time imagining any kid that isn’t a mega-nerdlinger wanting to see “The King’s Speech.” “Dude, forget ‘The Mechanic’ this weekend! The guy from ‘Bridget Jones’ drops the F-bomb! We’ll tell my mom we’re going to see ‘The Green Hornet’ and sneak in!”

Crazy, right? That idea’s completely buggered.

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Bro and Tell

BFFs And Night Court For Sports

Bromance and Comeuppance On Two New Comedy Crib Series

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“Silicon Valley meets Girls meets black male educators with lots of unrealized potential.”

That’s how Carl Foreman Jr. and Anthony Gaskins categorize their new series Frank and Lamar which joins Joe Schiappa’s Sport Court in the latest wave of new series available now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. To better acquaint you with the newbies, we went right to the creators for their candid POVs. And they did not disappoint. Here are snippets of their interviews:

Frank and Lamar

via GIPHY

IFC: How would you describe Frank and Lamar to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Carl: Best bros from college live and work together teaching at a fancy Manhattan private school, valiantly trying to transition into a more mature phase of personal and professional life while clinging to their boyish ways.

IFC: And to a friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Carl: The same way, slightly less coherent.

Anthony: I’d probably speak about it with much louder volume, due to the bar which would probably be playing the new Kendrick Lamar album. I might also include additional jokes about Carl, or unrelated political tangents.

Carl: He really delights in randomly slandering me for no reason. I get him back though. Our rapport on the page, screen, and in real life, comes out of a lot of that back and forth.

IFC: In what way is Frank and Lamar a poignant series for this moment in time?
Carl: It tells a story I feel most people aren’t familiar with, having young black males teach in a very affluent white world, while never making it expressly about that either. Then in tackling their personal lives, we see these three-dimensional guys navigate a pivotal moment in time from a perspective I feel mainstream audiences tend not to see portrayed.

Anthony: I feel like Frank and Lamar continues to push the envelope within the genre by presenting interesting and non stereotypical content about people of color. The fact that this show brought together so many talented creative people, from the cast and crew to the producers, who believe in the project, makes the work that much more intentional and truthful. I also think it’s pretty incredible that we got to employ many of our friends!

Sport Court

Sport Court gavel

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Joe: SPORT COURT follows Judge David Linda, a circuit court judge assigned to handle an ad hoc courtroom put together to prosecute rowdy fan behavior in the basement of the Hartford Ultradome. Think an updated Night Court.

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Joe: Remember when you put those firecrackers down that guy’s pants at the baseball game? It’s about a judge who works in a court in the stadium that puts you in jail right then and there. I know, you actually did spend the night in jail, but imagine you went to court right that second and didn’t have to get your brother to take off work from GameStop to take you to your hearing.

IFC: Is there a method to your madness when coming up with sports fan faux pas?
Joe: I just think of the worst things that would ruin a sporting event for everyone. Peeing in the slushy machine in open view of a crowd seemed like a good one.

IFC: Honestly now, how many of the fan transgressions are things you’ve done or thought about doing?
Joe: I’ve thought about ripping out a whole row of chairs at a theater or stadium, so I would have my own private space. I like to think of that really whenever I have to sit crammed next to lots of people. Imagine the leg room!

Check out the full seasons of Frank and Lamar and Sport Court now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”


Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”


But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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