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Odds: Wednesday – Nigel Kneale, angry Baldwin.

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"Nobody ever wins a cold war."
Screenwriter Nigel Kneale, best know for creating and writing the Quatermass films, died at the age of 84.  "The Quatermass Xperiment" made us weep in terror when we saw it on TV at an impressionable age (as did, embarrassingly, "Pinocchio"). "Nobody ever wins a cold war." Via BBC News.

According to The Australian, the European Centre for Antiziganism Research (a human rights group campaigning for gypsies) has filed a slander complaint in Germany against Sacha Baron Cohen:

Twentieth Century Fox, the film’s distributor in Germany, pulled television commercials and internet advertising that featured tongue-in-cheek talks of running over "gypsies" with a Hummer military vehicle after complaints by the group.

Not to sound cynical, but how serendipitously well-timed!

Via Borys Kit at the Hollywood Reporter, Larry and Andy Wachowski will indeed write and direct a live-action "Speed Racer":

"They are approaching these racing scenes in a way you’ve never seen before," said Silver, adding that the brothers are designing the movie’s look as they write. Silver also said that unlike the more adult-oriented material of the Wachowskis’ past — "Vendetta," the "Matrix" movies and "Bound" were all rated R — "Speed" will be family-friendly.

According to Empire, directors Bong Joon-Ho (of "The Host") and Park Chan-Wook (of "Oldboy" and the like) will be working together on a film — Park will produce "La Transperceneige," which Bong is set to direct:

It’s adapted from a French graphic novel by Jacques Lob and Jean-Marc Rochette, which chronicles the world of a train that serves as the last refuge for a depleted human race. As it dashes from an impending ice age, the carriages represent a microcosm of human society within their different classes.

The film is apparently going to be in English. And, speaking of, Bruce Wallace at the LA Times has an interview with Bong, in town for AFI Fest. This is the most ridiculous line ever:

Korean critics loved the mix of frights and humor. But the film will land in the United States at a highly charged moment, when most Americans absorbing news of the nuclear crisis from the Korean peninsula expect to see North Koreans, not themselves, cast as the bad guy.

Argh! But Bong is gracious:

"The movie makes many comments on the U.S. presence in Korea, but I think U.S. audiences will actually enjoy it," he said. "After all, my movie is just entertainment, fun. It’s about a monster. And the political message is very soft, especially compared to your own movies like ‘Fahrenheit 9/11.’ Americans who have seen that will not be shocked at my movie."

Also at the LA Times, Rachel Abramowitz previews the rest of the fest, which kicks off today.

Over at the Huffington Post, Alec Baldwin explains why he ankled his role as narrator of "Running with Arnold," a doc about the political ascension of Arnold Schwarzenegger:

I am certainly not a supporter of Arnold Schwarzenegger. I think he was unqualified for his current job when he ran in the bogus recall election. I believe he is unqualified for that job today. As dull as Phil Angelides‘ campaign has been, I believe that he would better represent the interests of more Californians than Schwarzenegger could ever hope to. Schwarzenegger is not a leader. Like Bush, he is a front man for a group of powerful interests and he is reading from a script. The filmmakers hammer Schwarzenegger over his private behavior and his record as governor. But Schwarzenegger deserves to be treated fairly and the film’s images of Nazi rallies were over the line.

At the Guardian‘s Film Blog, Ryan Gilbey writes about the possibilities of the ex-director’s cut, a la Richard Donner‘s take on "Superman II" and Paul Schrader‘s "Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist."

And over at Wired, Steve Silberman gives Darren Aronofsky the generous feature profile:

Like Burstyn‘s skittering hallucinations in Requiem, The Fountain‘s most haunting images linger in the mind long after the credits roll. When Tomas reaches toward the tree of life, golden filaments bristle and rise to meet his fingers. At the film’s climax, Tom and his bubble are blown through galactic clouds and pillars of dark matter that look like nothing else in science fiction. By bucking the conventions of CGI and using an ingenious application of microphotography to simulate space, Aronofsky has given the scenes in the nebula a handwrought quality that evokes the luminous etchings of William Blake.

+ Quatermass creator dies, aged 84 (BBC)
+ Borat accused of slander (The Australian)
+ Wachowskis fuel ‘Speed Racer’ (HR)
+ The Host And Oldboy Directors Team Up (Empire)
+ Who’s the monster? (LA Times)
+ It’s in L.A., but all the world is this fest’s stage (LA Times)
+ True Lies: Filmmakers Go Too Far in Attack Against Schwarzenegger (Huffington Post)
+ The ex-director’s cut (Guardian Film Blog)
+ The Outsider (Wired)

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.

Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.


Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…


IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.


IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).


IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.


IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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