Posts with «celebrities» label

New 'Wallace & Gromit' and 'Chicken Run' movies are coming to Netflix

After a hiatus of more than a decade, the world’s favorite fictitious British inventor (or possibly second after Q from James Bond) and his lovable canine sidekick are making a comeback. Today as part of its ongoing partnership with Aardman Animations Netflix announced the arrival of a new Wallace & Gromit movie and the long-awaited sequel to Chicken Run.

Due out sometime in 2023, Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget picks up after Ginger and Rocky’s daring escape with the hatching of the couple’s new chick Molly at their new island sanctuary home. And while Julia Sawalha and Mel Gibson won’t be reprising their roles as the leading chickens, Dawn of the Nugget’s cast will still feature some big-name stars including Thandie Newton (Ginger), Zachary Levi (Rocky) and Bella Ramsey (Molly), the latter of whom is also set to play Ellie in HBO’s upcoming live-action TV adaptation of The Last of Us.

CHICKEN RUN: DAWN OF THE NUGGET, starring Thandiwe Newton, Zachary Levi & Bella Ramsey, revisits your favorite chickens Ginger and Rocky plus a whole coop of new friends. Hatching only on Netflix in 2023. pic.twitter.com/wI39M8ZN4B

— NetflixFilm (@NetflixFilm) January 20, 2022

As for the still-untitled Wallace & Gromit movie, original series creator Nick Park will be returning as director featuring a story written by Park and Mark Burton (Madagascar, The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Shaun of the Sheep Movie). Slated to arrive almost two decades after The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Wallace and Gromit’s second feature-length film revolves around Wallace’s latest invention: a “smart gnome” that has developed a mind of its own. Queue the hijinx.

Notably, unlike Dawn of the Nugget which will be a worldwide exclusive on Netflix when it starts streaming sometime next year, the new Wallace & Gromit movie will debut first on the BBC in the UK before becoming available on Netflix in all other regions sometime in 2024.

With Aardman and Netlix’s stop-motion musical Robin Robin having been recently shortlisted for the Oscar’s in the animated short film category, it’s nice to see even more claymation movies get the green light–especially after the bomb that was 2018’s Early Man. That said, with the original Chicken Run and The Curse of the Were-Rabbit having already claimed the number one and two spots as the highest-grossing stop-motion animated films of all time, Aardman Studios might have a hard time competing for attention in a time when traditional computer-animated films have dominated the box office.

The first movie studio in space could be attached to the ISS in 2024

A module that hosts a film studio and sports arena could be connected to the International Space Station by December 2024. Space Entertainment Enterprise (SEE), which is co-producing a Tom Cruise movie that will partly be shot in space, is behind the project. If and when SEE-1 is up and running, it plans to host TV and film productions, as well as music events and some kind of sports, which can be filmed or livestreamed, according to Variety.

Axiom Space, which two years ago won a NASA contract to construct the first commercial ISS module, will build the station. All going well, SEE-1 will be connected to Axiom's arm of the ISS. Axiom Station is scheduled to split from the ISS in 2028 with SEE-1 still attached.

Whether SEE and Axiom can make good on their plan remains to be seen. SEE hasn't said how much the facility will cost, for one thing. It's currently planning a fundraising round.

Last year, a Russian crew shot a feature-length fiction film in space for the first time, beating Cruise and his director Doug Liman to the punch. That film, The Challenge, is expected to be released this year. Cruise and Liman, meanwhile, are expected to shoot their movie on the ISS later in 2022.

'Horizon Forbidden West' story trailer teases new characters and machines

Horizon Forbidden West is just under a month away from hitting PlayStation 4 and PS5, and Sony is ramping up its marketing push with a trailer that sheds some light on the sequel's story. The video is, unsurprisingly, packed with gorgeous visuals while offering some details on what seems to be a solid expansion of Horizon Zero Dawn's rich story.

"People are suffering. Soon, they'll starve," protagonist Aloy (Ashly Burch) says at the beginning of the trailer. "The machines, meant to help us, are out of control. I have to find a way to fix it all. The answer is somewhere out in the Forbidden West." We soon learn that, in that part of the world, war is the order of the day, so Aloy clearly has another difficult journey ahead.

Along with some familiar faces like Varl and Erend, there are some new characters in the trailer — both friendly and hostile ones. Angela Bassett plays one of the antagonists, Regalla. She's a rebel leader who "seeks to slaughter all those who've wronged her" and has the ability to control the machines, granted to her by a returning character. The three-minute clip closes with a glimpse of a mysterious character named Tilda. Guerrilla Games told Game Informer that The Matrix star Carrie-Anne Moss plays her.

Of course, some of the machines Aloy will battle appear in the clip too. Among them is a terrifying, giant cobra-rattlesnake hybrid called the Slitherfang, which can spit streams of acid in her direction.

Overall, the trailer offers another tantalizing look at a hotly anticipated game. Given that an unfinished build reportedly leaked earlier this month, it's best for fans to tread carefully to avoid spoilers before Horizon Forbidden West arrives on February 18th.

Apple's WeWork drama 'WeCrashed' premieres March 18th

Apple is nearly ready to release its tale of WeWork's tragic fall. The company has announced that its Apple TV+ limited series WeCrashed will premiere March 18th. The eight-episode drama stars Jared Leto as former WeWork CEO Adam Neumann, who wielded hype to earn a $47 billion valuation only to lose most of it (and his job) when the IPO process revealed ugly financials and leadership. Anne Hathaway plays Adam's wife Rebekah, who served as an executive (including the head of WeGrow) and whose relationship with Adam was "at the center of it all," according to Apple.

The trailer sets expectations quickly. The Neumanns portrayed by Leto and Hathaway are full of overly grand visions, portraying WeWork as nothing less than the future, a "movement" aiming to "elevate the world's consciousness." The clip also highlights the cult-like devotion to the company and its notoriously summer camp-like retreats. It's not certain how well the performances will hold up across a whole series, but Apple at least seems to understand how WeWork's reality was never going to match the buzz.

This isn't the first streaming take on WeWork's rise and sudden decline. Hulu's 2021 documentary was an imperfect but prominent take on the Neumann couple. Apple's effort clearly has star power, however, and the behind-the-camera talent has experience with well-received titles like Little America and This is Us. If nothing else, it's clear Apple hasn't given up its TV+ strategy of counting on big names to draw in viewers, even if the projects are slightly unusual.

Work-life balance is a surgical implant away in Apple TV+ series 'Severance'

Apple's latest TV+ sci-fi series is decidedly stranger than usual — but also one of its most star-studded. The tech firm has released the first trailer for Severance, a Black Mirror-like thriller depicting the horrors of trying too hard to achieve an ideal work-life balance. The show stars Parks and Recreation's Adam Scott as Mark, an office worker who volunteers for surgery that completely splits his personal and workplace memories. As you might guess, the procedure isn't as innocuous as it sounds — Mark finds himself questioning both his work and his identity.

Ben Stiller is an executive producer alongside show creator Dan Erickson. Scott isn't the only major star, either. Patricia Arquette (also a producer), John Turturro and Christopher Walken are also part of the cast.

Severance debuts February 18th. There's no guarantee it will be a hit, but it comes right as Apple is racking up awards nominations for multiple shows and movies. Apple TV+ appears to be finding its footing in the streaming world, and it's now a question of whether the service can keep that momentum going with high-profile efforts like this.

Marvel's 'Moon Knight' series premieres March 30th on Disney+

Disney+ is finally close to releasing Moon Knight. The Marvel series is now set to debut March 30th, and the trailer shows just how the streaming service will handle the mercenary turned superhero. Oscar Isaac stars as Steven Grant, a gift shop worker who has trouble distinguishing not just between dreams and waking life, but between identities — he learns he shares a body with the mercenary Marc Spector. The two identities have to reconcile while grappling with a threat among Egyptian gods, eventually coalescing into the show's namesake knight.

The series also stars Ethan Hawke and Ramy's May Calamawy. Mohamed Diab and the duo of Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead directed the season. The Umbrella Academy's Jeremy Slater is the lead writer, with Marvel Cinematic Universe guru Kevin Feige serving as one of several executive producers.

Moon Knight is one of several MCU "Phase Four" shows announced in 2019, including now-available projects like WandaVision and Hawkeye as well as yet-to-air productions like Ms. Marvel and She Hulk. In some ways, it represents the next wave of Disney+ content. Disney is confident enough to bank less on connections to popular Marvel movies and more on new stories, even if it's still leaning on stars like Isaac (himself no stranger to Disney) to attract viewers.

Roku is making a Weird Al mockumentary starring Daniel Radcliffe

It took more than a decade, but Weird Al is finally about to get the documentary he has always deserved. You may recall back in 2010 Funny Or Die released a trailer for Weird: The Al Yankovic Story. The clip promised an unflinching look at Yankovic’s life with performances from actors like Aaron Paul, Olvia Wilde and Gary Cole. We’re not about to get that film (sadly), but Roku may just give us the next best thing.

The company announced today it’s backing production on WEIRD: The Weird Al Jankovic Story. Instead of Aaron Paul as Yankovic, we get Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe. Eric Appel, best known for his work on Silicon Valley and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, co-wrote the film’s script alongside Yankovic and is directing the project. If Appel’s name sounds familiar, it’s because he directed the 2010 trailer for Weird: The Al Yankovic Story.

“I am absolutely thrilled that Daniel Radcliffe will be portraying me in the film,” Yankovic said in a statement. “I have no doubt whatsoever that this is the role future generations will remember him for.” WEIRD: The Weird Al Yankovic Story doesn’t have a release date yet, but production on the film is slated to start next month. Once it’s ready, it will be available to watch for free on The Roku Channel.

The Morning After: Spain sets rules (and fines) for cryptocurrency promotion

Governments are paying more attention to the rise and rise of cryptocurrencies – and their tax implications – whether it’s the major players like Bitcoin and Ethereum or newcomers looking to pick up users, investors and headlines.

In Spain, influencers and other advertisers with more than 100,000 followers will soon have to notify the National Securities Market Commission (CNMV) at least 10 days before plugging crypto assets. They'll face fines of up to €300,000 (around $342,000) for breaching the rules.

And it’s already happening. Some influencers who have plugged crypto-assets and related products have found themselves in hot water. In July 2021, French authorities fined a reality TV star €20,000 ($22,800) for “misleading commercial practices” over a Bitcoin trading site ad on Snapchat. More recently, Kim Kardashian and Floyd Mayweather were named defendants in a class-action lawsuit that accuses them of taking part in a "pump and dump" scheme earlier this month.

— Mat Smith

Apple may have dropped built-in noise cancellation on the iPhone 13

It's been a long-running accessibility feature on past iPhones.

Engadget

Apple's Noise Cancellation accessibility feature has been a staple on past iPhones but may have been permanently removed from the iPhone 13 series. The feature "reduces ambient noise on phone calls when you are holding the receiver to your ear," a feature that can help make calls easier to hear.

"Phone Noise Cancellation is not available on iPhone 13 models, which is why you do not see this option in [the Accessibility] settings," Apple support told one of 9to5Mac's readers. When the reader asked for clarification, the support team confirmed the feature is "not supported."

Continue reading.

Even Walmart might be getting into cryptocurrency and NFTs

Patents have been filed.

CNBC is reporting that Walmart filed several trademark applications with the US patent office in late December for selling virtual goods. Meanwhile, in another filing, it said it would provide cryptocurrency and NFTs. While the documents don't necessarily guarantee action, they’re surprisingly detailed.

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That time France tried to make decimal time a thing

Days were divided into ten parts.

pjjones via Getty Images

The French Revolution of 1789 set its sights on more than simply toppling the monarchy. Revolutionaries sought to break the nation free of its past, reframing how time itself was measured. In short, it tried to make decimal time happen. Senior Editor Andrew Tarantola explains the attempt.

Continue reading.

Samsung's new mobile processor uses an AMD ray-tracing GPU

It's likely to appear in the upcoming Galaxy S22.

Samsung’s first mobile processor with an AMD RDNA 2-powered GPU will allow ray-tracing and other gaming features. The system-on-chip (SoC) will likely appear in Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S22, rumored to be launching at an Unpacked event on February 8th.

AMD and Samsung announced a collaboration back in 2019, with the expectation that AMD's graphics tech would be used in Exynos smartphone processors. Rumors early last year suggested that AMD-powered Samsung processors were coming soon, and at Computex, AMD subsequently confirmed an upcoming Exynos mobile system-on-chip would feature its RDNA 2 graphics tech.

Continue reading.

The biggest news stories you might have missed


Awesome Games Done Quick raised a record $3.4 million for charity

US airlines warn C-Band 5G could cause 'catastrophic disruption'

Samsung's 14-inch Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra may offer equally massive specs

The next iPad Pro will reportedly offer MagSafe charging and a 'brand new chip'

Google honors Betty White with a tribute on her 100th birthday

Were she still alive, Betty White would be celebrating her 100th birthday today. In honor of that occasion, Google is celebrating the actor's life. Type White's full name into the company's search engine and you'll be treated to a special graphic. "Thank you for being a friend," the tribute reads, referencing White's most famous role, as rose petals fall from the top of the screen. White passed away of natural causes at the age of 99 on December 31st. White's decades-long career was full of highlights that included starring roles on popular sitcoms like The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Golden Girls. In 2010, she also hosted Saturday Night Live at the age of 88.  

Google

'Don't Look Up' is a star-studded scream against the climate apocalypse

A comet is headed to Earth, and despite dire warnings from scientists, almost everyone fails to take it seriously. That's the basic premise of Don't Look Up, the latest film from Adam McKay which premieres on Netflix today. It balances the blunt social commentary from his most recent Oscar nominated films (The Big Short and Vice), with the comic absurdity from his early hits, like Anchorman and Talladega Nights. The result is somewhat uneven and a bit too long, but it's also a battlecry against the anti-science, fact-phobic reality we're living through today.

The comet is an obvious metaphor for climate change, an apocalyptic scenario we're hurtling towards while governments drag their heels, the fossil fuel industry feigns ignorance and most people go about their lives oblivious about what's to come. But Don't Look Up also describes humanity's bumbling response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a global disaster that's led to more than five million deaths. 

The film's title is a mantra used by a conservative president (Meryl Streep) to make her red-capped supporters look down at the ground, and not at the glowing comet in the sky they can easily see in the sky. It's hard not to be reminded of the politicization of COVID-19, which has led to people denying its existence and demonizing vaccines, all because of something they heard on Fox News or their family's Facebook group.

After two astronomers (played by a surprisingly nebbish Leonardo DiCaprio and a spunky Jennifer Lawrence) rush to the White House with news about Earth's impending destruction in six months, they're forced to wait. Streep's President Orlean is dealing with a potential scandal around a Supreme Court nominee, obviously that's more important. By the time they lay out Earth's impending doom, Orlean would rather wait and do nothing. "What's this going to cost me? What's the ask in place?" she says.

As the two scientists try to spread the word, first by leaking the doomsday scenario to the media, and then by becoming media personalities of their own, the film takes a scattershot aim at critiquing our modern society. The great Mark Rylance plays a Jobs-meets-Zuckerberg tech executive, the sort of mogul whose idea of innovation is a phone that'll constantly monitor you to fix negative emotions. (Feeling down? Bash Life will automatically book a nearby therapy session for you.) Cate Blanchett and Tyler Perry pop up as cable news hosts who can only speak to their audience with faux, upbeat banter—yes, even if that news is about humanity's imminent destruction.

Netflix

Don't Look Up sometimes feels like it's punching down, especially when it's focusing on the sheer stupidity of President Orlean's conservative followers. But the film isn't afraid to criticize everyone, even its scientist leads. Both characters have trouble properly conveying the significance of their discovery. And when DiCaprio's astronomer finds his media legs, he's fully a part of the government propaganda machine.

By the time the American government finally decides to do something about the comet — only because it benefits the President, of course — it's dressed up in patriotic showmanship, as if Michael Bay were directing George W. Bush's tone deaf 2003 Mission Accomplished speech. I won't spoil where the movie goes from there, but it's clearly spoofing Bay's Armageddon. One war hero and a big rocket is all it takes to stop a planet destroying threat, right?

Netflix

Don't Look Up isn't a complete success — the comedy is hit or miss, and it could seriously benefit from a shorter and more focused narrative. But the final act hits with a wallop, at times reenacting scenarios I've seen in far too many anxiety dreams. If the world were really ending in a few months, how would you react? What do we owe each other, as a civilization? And what will it take to protect this planet in the face of profit-seeking vampires, who would gladly risk humanity for a few more resources? Adam McKay doesn't have any answers. But his anger is something we can all understand.