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EARLY WORD ON STAR TREK BEYOND IS EXCELLENTStar Trek Beyond

Press screenings haven’t taken place yet but Star Trek Beyond is already garnering excellent word of mouth from its junkets. What’s a junket? It’s where the film studio invites various people from tv shows, websites, podcasts etc… to a screening, followed by a meet-and-greet with the stars and producers. These lucky few are not film critics, but rather part and parcel of the publicity machine and, as such, the views given at such things are usually more positive than not. But when a lot of social media postings echo the same feelings, we can read between the lines and it looks like the third film in the Star Trek Kelvin Universe is gonna be a blast. Here’s a typical tweet from someone who was at the junket:

TOS means The Original Series and if that’s the case, fans will rejoice. The TOS cast movies (1979 – 1991) had a reputation – odd numbered ones (I, III, V) were bad, and the even ones good. With this alternate timeline, maybe the reverse is true? Star Trek (2009) was great, Star Trek Into Darkness (2013) pretty awful. XO.TV will have a full review of this third entry next Friday, July 22.

 

FIRST LOOK AT PENNYWISE FROM REMAKE OF STEPHEN KING’S IT Pennywise

In 1990 tv audiences were treated to a mini-series (remember those before they were called ‘Events’?!) adaptation of Stephen King’s It, the terrifying story of an entity preying on kids in small town America. It ran in two parts; the first was set in the 50’s and focused on a band of children who called themselves ‘The Losers Club’, and their horror at the hands of the malevolent creature that manifested itself as a clown called Pennywise. The second followed this group as adults, and their return to the town to finish what they’d started thirty-odd years before. Now a remake is before the cameras and although it’s going to be a big screen adaptation, it will also follow the same structure over two features. And, of course, there’s a new Pennywise (above).

Bill Skarsgård is playing the clown this time and had this to say:

It’s such an extreme character. Inhumane. It’s beyond even a sociopath, because he’s not even human. He’s not even a clown. I’m playing just one of the beings It creates…Tim Curry’s performance was truly great, but it’s important for me to do something different because of that. I’ll never be able to make a Tim Curry performance as good as Tim Curry.

Curry played the original Pennywise (and is likely the source of many of your nightmares if you’re of a particular age) and was the best thing in the 90’s version that otherwise suffered from a small budget and some very wooden acting. We’re not sure about the new version – is he scary enough? IT is set for release on September 8, 2017.

AND THE WORLD’S HIGHEST PAID ACTOR IS…Dollars

Any guesses? Tom Cruise? Matt Damon? Some Bollywood chap? Melissa McCarthy? Nope. The honour goes to:

Dwayne Johnson

Yep. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is now the highest silver screen earner on the planet and if that shocks you, it really shouldn’t. His films consistently amass huge amounts of the green stuff, even the bad ones. Especially the bad ones. Remember last years’ San Andreas? A CGI overloaded effort with no real redeeming features, it earned almost half a billion dollars at the box office. That’s before home viewing, streaming, cable sales etc… are taken into consideration. Or, in other words, WTF?

Johnson is undoubtedly a huge draw, with audiences seemingly loving him in…anything. Well, he does have charm, and likeability, and an envious work ethic, and arms the size of small children and…aw, hell, we LOVE the guy! Although we still think San Andreas was pants.

 

SAMUEL L. JACKSON NARRATES GAME OF THRONES CATCH-UP AND IT IS GLORIOUS

courtesy of penciljack.com
courtesy of penciljack.com

Game of Thrones is huge, complex and sometimes it’s hard to keep up with who’s who. So a recap of the first five seasons (season six has recently finished) is most welcome. And who would you pick to narrate such a thing?

Sam Jackson probably wouldn’t be your immediate choice but what a thing of beauty this is. Be warned, it is SO NOT SFW – as if it ever would be with Jackson at the helm – but, seriously, the man could recite the phone book and we’d listen. Our favourite bit here? “And Bran? Bran’s trippin’“. Take five and just enjoy this. With headphones, if you’re at work:

 

NETFLIX ORDERS BLOODLINE SEASON 3Bloodline 2.10 - FI

We’re big fans of the Netflix series Bloodline here at XO.TV. As well as offering extensive coverage of Season 2, we can’t sing the praises of cast members Kyle Chandler, Ben Mendelsohn and Sissy Spacek enough. The Florida Keys set, sultry, sweaty tale focuses on the highly dysfunctional Rayburn family and the fallout that results when wayward son Danny (Mendelsohn) returns home. With sex, violence, drugs and political intrigue it’s got everything you need for a boxset binge and has been called the normative successor to Breaking Bad.

Now Netflix has confirmed that Season 3 is ordered, due to be dropped sometime in 2017. There has never, ever been a time of so many quality shows available on the small screen so it’s always good that a big story – the producers apparently envisaged a six-season run to tell the full tale – is allowed to develop instead of being rushed. Season 2 didn’t quite garner the viewing figures of Season 1; let’s hope Season 3 gets enough people in front of the screen to justify the full run.

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Mike has loved movies his entire life and would happily live at his local multiplex if only they’d let him. With a particular love of genre and sci-fi, Mike will happily watch almost anything, although he did walk out of an Alvin & The Chipmunks movie a few years ago. Because he has good taste as well.