Andor director Toby Haynes will transition from a galaxy far, far away to boldly seek out new worlds at the helm of a planned Star Trek movie. The origin story is set decades before J.J. Abrams' 2009 Star Trek film.
Entertainment Weekly confirmed that Haynes will direct the Star Trek prequel with a script by Seth Grahame-Smith. EW reports, “Haynes, of course, is no stranger to Star Trek-like stories: Not only is he best known for directing episodes of Andor, Sherlock, and Doctor Who, but he also helmed the beloved Black Mirror episode ‘USS Callister.' Jesse Plemons and Cristin Miloti starred in the standout 2017 episode, which was set in a Star Trek-inspired universe.”
Meanwhile, Star Trek 4 — a sequel to 2016's Star Trek Beyond — lingers in development. The planned final chapter in the Star Trek series starring Chris Pine as Captain Kirk and Zachary Quinto as Spock still needs a new director after Matt Shakman dropped out to direct yet another Fantastic Four reboot.
‘The Drew Barrymore Show’ Renewed for Season Five, You Guys
Despite a late start and conflict with her writers during the Writers Guild of America strike last year, The Drew Barrymore Show will return for a fifth season on CBS. The variety talk show debuted in September 2020.
Deadline reports, “The renewal also comes after a rocky fall for The Drew Barrymore Show whose host originally announced a September 18 return, while the writers were still striking, before reversing the decision amid picketing of the show and outcry from WGA members.”
Wendy McMahon, president and CEO of CBS News and Stations and CBS Media Ventures, said, “The Drew Barrymore Show is firing on all cylinders this season. Drew continues to catapult the show into the cultural zeitgeist with her empathetic and thoughtful interviews transporting viewers into her living room, where they feel like they are listening to a conversation between two friends that they are a part of. It’s an experience unlike any other in television. Drew is truly creating magic in daytime, and we’re thrilled to continue to bring that to our stations.”
See Marisa Abela as Amy Winehouse in First ‘Back to Black’ Teaser
Studiocanal has released the first teaser trailer for the Amy Winehouse biopic Back to Black, starring Marisa Abela as the iconic singer who passed away in 2011 at the age of 27. British filmmaker Sam Taylor-Johnson directed Back to Black, which also stars Jack O'Connell, Eddie Marsan, Juliet Cowan, and Lesley Manville.
As reported by Deadline, “The teaser features a wide-eyed Winehouse through her early years, setting her famous image and persona on the streets of London before ending with the singer, played by Abela, recording the single ‘Back to Black' in a recording studio.” The movie will feature Winehouse's songs performed by Abela.
“Discovering a talent like Marisa Abela is akin to finding gold dust,” said Taylor-Johnson. “The moment she looked into the lens at her first audition, I knew she was the perfect actor to play Amy Winehouse. She put in an enormous amount of work, and attention to every detail and she trained daily for hours to be able to sing throughout the entire movie. She doesn’t impersonate Amy, she inhabits her.”
Back to Black premieres in the U.K. on April 12 and in the U.S. on May 10.
‘Beef’ Star Young Mazino Cast as Jesse in ‘The Last of Us’ Season Two
Young Mazino, who plays Paul Cho on Netflix's Beef, will play Jesse on the second season of The Last of Us. Production on season two will begin in February.
Jesse will play an integral part of The Last of Us season two. As reported by IndieWire, “[Mazino] will play Jesse, a character described as a pillar of his community who puts everyone else’s needs before his own — sometimes at terrible cost.”
“Young is one of those rare actors who is immediately undeniable the moment you see him,” The Last of Us cocreators Craig Mazin and Neil Druckmann said in a statement. “We’re so lucky to have him, and we can’t wait for the audience to see Young shine in our show.”
Danny Boyle and Alex Garland To Make ’28 Years Later’
Director Danny Boyle and writer Alex Garland — the duo behind the 2002 postapocalyptic horror film 28 Days Later starring Cillian Murphy — have reunited to make a second sequel, 28 Years Later. The first sequel, 2007's 28 Weeks Later, was not directed by Boyle nor written by Garland, nor did it star Murphy.
Boyle and Garland reportedly hope to launch a new trilogy of films with 28 Years Later. As reported by Variety, “Released in 2002 (still only 22 years ago), the original 28 Days Later starred Cillian Murphy, then largely unknown to moviegoing audiences. It shocked moviegoers with its sprinting undead hordes, unforgiving pessimism and cutting-edge employment of the murky frontier that was early digital photography. Boyle directed the feature, while Garland wrote. Flipping its economical production budget of $8 million to an $84 million gross at the global box office, the zombie film was a hit on home video too and has since risen to the status of a classic within the genre.” Boyle and Garland seek a production budget of $75 million for 28 Years Later.
Although it's not yet known if Murphy — whose star has risen significantly after Oppenheimer — will reprise his role as Jim in 28 Years Later. In an interview with NME in 2022, Murphy seemed receptive to the idea. “Every time I do bump into Danny or Alex I always mention it,” Murphy said. “I showed [28 Days Later] to my kids recently — some Halloween about four or five years ago — and they loved it. It really stands up, which is amazing for a film that’s 20 years old. So yeah, I love the idea and it’s very appealing to me.”
‘The Good Doctor' Starring Freddie Highmore to End After Seventh Season
ABC's The Good Doctor starring Freddie Highmore will end after its upcoming seventh season. Highmore plays autistic surgical resident Shaun Murphy on the medical drama that premiered in 2017.
Deadline reports: “Thanks to David Shore and Liz Friedman’s creative direction and anchored by Freddie Highmore’s performance, The Good Doctor has captivated audiences, who have deeply connected with Dr. Shaun Murphy and the staff at San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital,” said Craig Erwich, president, Disney Television Group. “As we prepare to finish this beloved story, words cannot express our gratitude for the incredible cast, crew and our partners at Sony and ABC Signature for the lasting impact they’ve made.”
Highmore — who previously played Norman Bates on Bates Motel — said, “Playing Dr. Shaun Murphy has been an immense privilege and one of the most remarkable and rewarding experiences of my life. I will always be grateful to David, Liz, and Erin as well as the hugely talented – and lovely – cast, writers, and crew who made this show possible. Caring deeply is what got us here. Thank you to Sony and ABC, and to everyone who has watched along at home. With love from Vancouver… tequila, stat!”
‘Barbie' Leads the People's Choice Awards Nominations with Nine
Barbie continues to dominate awards season with nine nominations for the People's Choice Awards. Unlike other self-congratulatory awards ceremonies, the general public votes for the winners for the People's Choice Awards.
Simu Liu — who played one of the Kens in Barbie — is not only nominated for the Movie Performance of the Year, he will host the ceremony on February 18 at at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT simultaneously on NBC, Peacock and E!.
“I’m so grateful to have been asked to step up to the hosting plate for the 2024 People’s Choice Awards,” Liu said in a statement quoted by The Hollywood Reporter. “It’s exciting to celebrate this incredible year in pop culture, and to do so with the incredible fans that make what we do possible.”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, “Voting for the People’s Choice Awards is now open and fans worldwide can support their favorite nominee in each of the 45 categories representing movies, television, music, and pop culture. Voting runs from January 11 through January 19 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Fans can vote online at www.votepca.com.”
New Trailer for the Horror Movie ‘Abigail' Features the Late Angus Cloud
Universal Pictures dropped the first trailer for the horror movie Abigail, which stars the late Angus Cloud. The movie directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett — the directors of Scream (2022) and Scream VI — also stars Melissa Barrera, Dan Stevens, Kevin Durand, Newton, William Catlett, and Giancarlo Esposito.
As reported by Variety, the official Abigail logline reads: “Children can be such monsters. After a group of would-be criminals kidnap the 12-year-old ballerina daughter of a powerful underworld figure, all they have to do to collect a $50 million ransom is watch the girl overnight. In an isolated mansion, the captors start to dwindle, one by one, and they discover, to their mounting horror, that they’re locked inside with no normal little girl.”
Euphoria actor Cloud — who plays one of the kidnappers in Abigail — lost his life in 2023 due to an accidental overdose.
Abigail opens in theaters nationwide on April 19.
‘Curb Your Enthusiasm' Trailer Drops for Final Season of the Larry David Show
HBO has dropped a trailer for the 12th and final season of Curb Your Enthusiasm. The comedy series starring Larry David as a fictionalized version of himself premiered in October 2000.
IndieWire reports, “The show’s open-ended format has allowed it to continue for 20 years, but David revealed his decision to end the series in a playful statement that poked fun at his curmudgeonly persona.”
“As Curb comes to an end, I will now have the opportunity to finally shed this ‘Larry David’ persona and become the person God intended me to be — the thoughtful, kind, caring, considerate human being I was until I got derailed by portraying this malignant character,” David said in a statement. “And so ‘Larry David,’ I bid you farewell. Your misanthropy will not be missed. And for those of you who would like to get in touch with me, you can reach me at Doctors Without Borders.”
Season 12 of Curb Your Enthusiasm premieres February 4 on HBO and Max.
David Gordon Green No Longer Directing ‘The Exorcist: Believer' Sequel
Save your servant, Universal. David Gordon Green — the man who successfully rebooted the Halloween franchise and director of The Exorcist: Believer — will no longer direct The Exorcist: Deceiver. The studio is searching for a new director.
According to Deadline, “Universal and Blumhouse bought the Exorcist franchise rights for a trilogy from Morgan Creek back in July 2021 for an exorbitant $400 million. However, things didn’t go as planned at the box office with the first movie, The Exorcist: The Believer, opening to a soft $26.4 million domestic, and grossing $65.5 million U.S./Canada, $136.2 million worldwide.”
David Gordon Green is currently directing the Ben Stiller movie Nutcrackers as well as the fourth season of HBO's The Righteous Gemstones. With his departure from The Exorcist: Deceiver, that film's planned April 15, 2025 release date will likely change.
Michael Jackson Biopic Starring His Nephew Will Moonwalk into Theaters in 2025
The Michael Jackson biopic Michael directed by Antoine Fuqua and starring Michael's nephew Jaafar Jackson has a new release date set for April 18, 2025. Lionsgate announced that the film will begin production on January 22.
As reported by Variety, the official description reads: “Michael will bring audiences a riveting and honest portrayal of the brilliant yet complicated man who became the King of Pop. The film presents his triumphs and tragedies on an epic, cinematic scale — from his human side and personal struggles to his undeniable creative genius, exemplified by his most iconic performances. As never before, audiences will experience an inside look into one of the most influential, trailblazing artists the world has ever known.”
Jaafar Jackson is the son of Michael's brother Jermaine Jackson. Jaafar released his first single, “Got Me Singing,” in 2019.
An AI-Generated George Carlin Comedy Special Incenses Late Comedian's Daughter
A new hour-long comedy special from Dudesy featuring an AI-generated George Carlin has received pushback from the late comedian's daughter. Dubbed “the dean of counterculture comedians,” Carlin passed away in 2008 and is considered one of the greatest stand-ups of all time.
According to USA Today, “Dudesy is an AI comedy platform from Mad TV alum Will Sasso and podcaster Chad Kultgen.” A YouTube description written by AI about the I'm Glad I'm Dead comedy special reads, “For the next hour, I'll be doing my best George Carlin impersonation just like a human being would. I tried to capture his iconic style to tackle the topics I think the comedy legend would be talking about today.” As promised, the AI Carlin goes off on current topics such as Donald Trump, transgender people, modern tech, and reality TV.
Carlin's daughter, Kelly Carlin-McCall, expressed her disdain on Instagram. She said, “My dad spent a lifetime perfecting his craft from his very human life, brain and imagination. No machine will ever replace his genius. These AI generated products are clever attempts at trying to re-create a mind that will never exist again. Let’s let the artist's work speak for itself.”
Responding to a commenter, Carlin-McCall said the special was not authorized. “Humans are so afraid of the void that we can’t let what has fallen into it stay there,” said Carlin-McCall. “Here’s an idea, how about we give some actual living human comedians a listen to? But if you want to listen to the genuine George Carlin, he has 14 specials that you can find anywhere.”