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“Star Wars” prequels get back-to-back 3D rerelease dates

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If you’ve been desperate to know when “Star Wars: Episode II” and “Episode III” would be getting their 3D rereleases, we’ve got some great news for you. During this past weekend at the Star Wars Celebration VI, it was announced that the last two prequel films would be returning to the big screen in back-to-back releases next year.

The release dates were confirmed on the “Star Wars” Facebook page. “Attack of the Clones” will hit theaters on September 20, 2013 and “Revenge of the Sith” is due out on October 11, 2013.

It’s an interesting move for LucasFilm to make, and we can only see one reason for it: the original trilogy is being post-converted to 3D as well. “Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace” hit theaters earlier this year and made around $44 million, which is a decent pull for a 3D movie that came out more than a decade ago. We can expect the next two prequel films to do the same if not better, and then we’re free to have “A New Hope,” “Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi” in theaters between 2014 and 2016.

Honestly, the sooner we can move past the new trilogy the better. It’s not a secret that the prequels are a bit divisive, and “Phantom Menace” didn’t look that great in 3D. Hopefully George Lucas is taking a page out of James Cameron’s book and is lovingly converting the original “Star Wars” trilogy into 3D so it doesn’t have the same problems “Phantom Menace” did. Then we can all anxiously await the likely 3D Blu-ray “Star Wars” boxed set that will likely be announced after these movies hit theaters.

Will you see “Attack of the Clones” or “Revenge of the Sith” in 3D? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Face Melting Cameos

The 10 Most Metal Pop Culture Cameos

Glenn Danzig drops by Portlandia tonight at 10P on IFC.

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Glenn Danzig rocks harder than granite. In his 60 years, he’s mastered punk with The Misfits, slayed metal with the eponymous Danzig, and generally melted faces with the force of his voice. And thanks to Fred and Carrie, he’s now stopping by tonight’s brand new Portlandia so we can finally get to see what “Evil Elvis” is like when he hits the beach. To celebrate his appearance, we put together our favorite metal moments from pop culture, from the sublime to the absurd.

10. Cannibal Corpse meets Ace Ventura

Back in the ’90s,  Cannibal Corpse was just a small time band from Upstate New York, plying their death metal wares wherever they could find a crowd, when a call from Jim Carry transformed their lives. Turns out the actor was a fan, and wanted them for a cameo in his new movie, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective. The band had a European tour coming up, and were wary of being made fun of, so they turned it down. Thankfully, the rubber-faced In Living Color vet wouldn’t take no for an answer, proving that you don’t need to have a lot of fans, just the right ones.


9. AC/DC in Private Parts

Howard Stern’s autobiographical film, based on his book of the same name, followed his rise in the world of radio and pop culture. For a man surrounded by naked ladies and adoring fans, it’s hard to track the exact moment he made it. But rocking out with AC/DC in the middle of Central Park, as throngs of fans clamor to get a piece of you, seems like it comes pretty close. You can actually see Stern go from hit host to radio god in this clip, as “You Shook Me All Night Long” blasts in the background.


8. Judas Priest meets The Simpsons

When you want to blast a bunch of peace-loving hippies out on their asses, you’re going to need some death metal. At least, that’s what the folks at The Simpsons thought when they set up this cameo from the metal gods. Unfortunately, thanks to a hearty online backlash, the writers of the classic series were soon informed that Judas Priest, while many things, are not in fact “death metal.” This led to the most Simpson-esque apology ever. Rock on, Bartman. Rock on.


7. Anthrax on Married…With Children

What do you get when Married…with Children spoofs My Dinner With Andre, substituting the erudite playwrights for a band so metal they piss rust? Well, for starters, a lot of headbanging, property destruction and blown eardrums. And much like everything else in life, Al seems to have missed the fun.


6. Motorhead rocks out on The Young Ones

The Young Ones didn’t just premiere on BBC2 in 1982 — it kicked the doors down to a new way of doing comedy. A full-on assault on the staid state of sitcoms, the show brought a punk rock vibe to the tired format, and in the process helped jumpstart a comedy revolution. For instance, where an old sitcom would just cut from one scene to the next, The Young Ones choose to have Lemmy and his crew deliver a raw version of “Ace of Spades.” The general attitude seemed to be, you don’t like this? Well, then F— you!


5. Red and Kitty Meet Kiss on That ’70s Show

Carsey-Werner Productions

Carsey-Werner Productions

Long before they were banished to playing arena football games, Kiss was the hottest ticket in rock. The gang from That ’70s Show got to live out every ’70s teen’s dream when they were set loose backstage at a Kiss concert, taking full advantage of groupies, ganja and hard rock.


4. Ronnie James Dio in Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny (NSFW, people!)

What does a young boy do when he was born to rock, and the world won’t let him? What tight compadre does he pray to for guidance and some sweet licks? If you’re a young Jables, half of “the world’s most awesome band,” you bow your head to Ronnie James Dio, aka the guy who freaking taught the world how to do the “Metal Horns.” Never before has a rock god been so literal than in this clip that turns it up to eleven.


3. Ozzy Osbourne in Trick or Treat

It’s hard to tell if Ozzy was trying his hardest here, or just didn’t give a flying f–k. What is clear is that, either way, it doesn’t really matter. Ozzy’s approach to acting seems to lean more heavily on Jack Daniels than sense memory, and yet seeing the slurry English rocker play a sex-obsessed televangelist is so ridiculous, he gets a free pass. Taking part in the cult horror Trick or Treat, Ozzy proves that he makes things better just by showing up. Because that’s exactly what he did here. Showed up. And it rocks.


2. Glenn Danzig on Portlandia

Danzig seems to be coming out of a self imposed exile these days. He just signed with a record company, and his appearance on Portlandia is reminding everyone how kick ass he truly is. Who else but “The Other Man in Black” could help Portland’s resident goths figure out what to wear to the beach? Carrie Brownstein called Danzig “amazing,” and he called Fred “a genius,” so this was a rare love fest for the progenitor of horror punk.


1. Alice Cooper in Wayne’s World

It’s surprising, sure, but for a scene that contains no music whatsoever, it’s probably the most famous metal moment in the history of film. When Alice Cooper informed Wayne and Garth that Milwaukee is actually pronounced “Milly-way-kay” back in 1992, he created one of the most famous scenes in comedy history. What’s more metal than that? Much like Wayne and Garth, we truly are not worthy.

Saturn Awards: Frank Oz talks “Star Wars,” George Lucas and the possibility of a Yoda spinoff

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Frank Oz has worn many different hats in Hollywood. He’s a staple of the Jim Henson Company, voicing many memorable characters from “The Muppets,” directing “Dark Crystal” and even playing the Wiseman in “Labyrinth.” He’s directed “Little Shop of Horrors” and “Death at a Funeral.” Heck, he even voiced three of “Sessame Street’s” main characters — Bert, Grover and the Cookie Monster — for almost four decades.

But Oz’s work as the voice of Yoda will always be what we love him most for. The little green Jedi has become a staple of George Lucas’s “Star Wars” universe, and was one of the main reasons that Oz received a Life Career Award from the Saturn Awards on Thursday. IFC had the chance to speak with Oz on the red carpet for the event and asked him about the impact that “Star Wars” has had on his life.

“I’ve been blessed that George gave me the opportunity to do Yoda and to work with him. George and Lucasfilms, they’re like a second family, a professional family. You know, it’s not a day job. You do it every fifteen years,” he said with a laugh that had a hint of Yoda in it. “But every time you do it, George just wants to make it better and it’s just a joy to bring that character to life. I know that character inside out. I know that character. And working with George is always a pleasure. He’s very specific. He knows what he wants. And it’s a joy.”

When asked why he thinks that “Star Wars” has remained so relevant over the decades since its release, he said, “I think it’s the mythology. I think the underground current of that larger mythology, that touches us all. ”

Yoda is a character who has appeared in five of the six main “Star Wars” movies, but whose origins were never explained. Of course, fans got to understand more about the Jedi master thanks to “Star Wars” novels, comic books and games, but Oz admitted that he created his own backstory for the character.

“When I was creating the character of Yoda, I got everything in the script and I really marked everything down from the script — what people knew about Yoda, what Yoda knew about people, what others didn’t, etc. — and I created a biography for him. So I have it in my head, but there hasn’t been an opportunity to work on it if there was [a spinoff],” he said.

When we asked if he’d ever want to work on something that explored more of Yoda as a character, he said, “Oh sure, sure, but it’s not one of those things that you want to [force]. It’s one of those things that you want to sit down with somebody at a bar and talk about.”

Oh how we would love to be sitting opposite him in that bar.

Would you ever want to see a “Star Wars” project explore more of Yoda’s backstory? What is your favorite thing that Oz has worked on? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

SDCC 2012 ends with a special delivery of Comic-Con toys

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This year’s pop-culture riot known as Comic-Con International may be over, but our pals at Hasbro made the return from San Diego a little sweeter with a special delivery that hit my doorstep at some point amid the West Coast nerdery.

Newsflash: A massive box of toys is a pretty good cure for a red-eye flight across the country and the pain of uncomfortable seating and airline peanuts.

Just in case the size of this box doesn’t translate well, Kevin Spacey could fit at least a dozen human heads into this package. (Just to be clear, that’s an inappropriate “Se7en” reference. Please don’t call the authorities.)

What’s in the box, you ask? Well, have a look:

On the far left, that’s a pair of Marvel action-figure packs — specifically, the “Marvel Legends Uncanny X-Force” set and the “Marvel Universe Masters of Evil” special-edition pack. On a related note, if you’re not reading Marvel’s Uncanny X-Force comic, you’re missing out. It’s great stuff.

Moving to the right, that’s Hasbro’s SDCC-Exclusive “Star Wars Vintage Carbonite Chamber Collector’s Pack,” which contains seven figures in old-school, retro packaging that anyone who grew up with “Star Wars” toys will immediately recognize. The pack contains one figure from each of the six movies, as well as a special-edition figure that I’ll get to in a second that’s pretty amazing.

On top of the “Star Wars” pack is a pair of figures from “G.I. Joe: Retaliation,” the recently delayed sequel to 2009’s “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra.” They’re both figures based on the character Kim “Jinx” Arashikage, a ninja played by Elodie Yung in the film. The movie might not be coming out anytime soon, but that didn’t stop the action figures from hitting shelves.

Finally, the big box on the far right is probably my favorite of the bunch. It’s a special-edition crossover between the G.I. Joe and Transformers universes. Hasbro’s “Shockwave H.I.S.S. Tank” combines one of the most iconic vehicles in the G.I. Joe line with one of the most popular robots in the Transformers scene, and the result is a match made in nerd heaven.

Oh, and what about the special Star Wars figure I mentioned earlier? Well, here’s the real kicker…

By popular demand, the SDCC-Exclusive set also comes with an extra Jar Jar Binks figure. But before you punch your screen, take note: the new figure features Jar Jar frozen in carbonite.

Yes, one of the most hated figures in the Star Wars universe finally gets what’s coming to him. And it’s glorious, folks.

All of these figures made their debut at San Diego Comic-Con, but if you couldn’t make the trip to the West Coast, take heart: some of them are available at www.HasbroToyShop.com and elsewhere online (if you know where to look).

Now if I can just figure out what to do with this ridiculously large box…

E3 2012: 10 upcoming video games that movie fans should check out

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LOS ANGELES, California — There were hundreds of games present at the Electronic Entertainment Expo last week that appealed to a vast variety of gamers. Everyone from the most hardcore video game enthusiasts to those who prefer to stick to “Angry Birds” and “Words With Friends” would have found something to like during the three-day industry-only event. Since we here at IFC have a soft spot for film, we decided to focus our time at E3 on the best-looking video games that have some sort of movie angle.

Well, we went, we saw and we conquered. Of all the games in attendance, we parsed out the 10 titles that we thought would be the most interesting to our movie-minded readers. If you like flicks like “Star Trek,” “The Avengers,” “The Lord of the Rings,” “Super,” “Star Wars” or “The Amazing Spider-Man,” this list probably pertains to you. Feel free to navigate through our previews for the games through the links below or the numbers listed at the bottom of this page. We hope you enjoy reading them, because we sure liked playing them for you.

Select a title:

-“Star Wars: 1313″
-“Star Trek: The Game”
-“Batman: Arkham City: Armored Edition”
-“Lollipop Chainsaw”
-“The Avengers: Battle for Earth”
-“007 Legends”
-“The Amazing Spider-Man”
-“Transformers: Fall of Cybertron”
-“Harry Potter Kinect”
-“Guardians of Middle-Earth”

Honorable mention: “Aliens: Colonial Marines” — We didn’t get a chance to check out the latest installment in the “Alien” games franchise, but if you’re looking for something to sate your interest in the series after “Prometheus,” this spin on James Cameron‘s “Aliens” could be worth your time.

“Star Wars” TV series will be “Deadwood” in space

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It’s been a while since we’ve heard anything about the planned live action “Star Wars” TV series.

The folks over at Den of Geek recently had a chance to talk to the show’s producer Rick McCallum about the planned project. He said that they have over 50 hours of second draft scripts, but that it could take up to a year to shoot them because “they’re all very complex.”

“Our biggest problem is that these stories are adult. I mean…these are like ‘Deadwood’ in space,” he said. “It so unlike anything you’ve ever associated with George before in relation to ‘Star Wars.’ These aren’t for kids. I mean, we hope they’ll watch, but it’s not being targeted at 8-to-9 year old boys.”

That sounds pretty exciting, like something akin to “Battlestar Galactica” in terms of complexity and tone. But apparently McCallum is also having a difficult time keeping the “Star Wars” budget under control.

“The situation we have is that each episode -– or if you put two hour long episodes together -– is bigger than any film we’ve ever done. It’s on the Avatar level and we’ll only have about $5-6 million we can spend on each episode,” he said.

Last we knew, its working title was “Star Wars: Underworld” and it was going to focus on the underbelly of “Star Wars” society. Back in January, McCallum said 50 scripts had been written for the show, and that they’ll take place between the events of “Episode III” and “Episode IV.” No word yet on when this show will actually see the light of day.

Would you want to see the “Star Wars” TV series he’s describing? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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