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Friday, May 27, 2022

PHOTOS FROM “LIGHT & MAGIC” STAR WARS CELEBRATION PANEL

 


Disney+ released photos from the Star Wars Celebration panel for “Light & Magic,” which was moderated by ABC’s Chris Connelly. The panel featured director Lawrence Kasdan and executive producer Ron Howard, joined by VFX titans Dennis Muren, Phil Tippett, Joe Johnston, Rose Duignan and Lynwen Brennan, discussing the exciting, new six-part documentary series produced by Imagine Documentaries that showcases Lucasfilm’s Industrial Light & Magic (ILM)

 

Granted unparalleled access, Academy Award®-nominated filmmaker Lawrence Kasdan takes viewers on an adventure behind the curtains of Industrial Light & Magic, the special visual effects, animation and virtual production division of Lucasfilm. Learn what inspired some of the most legendary filmmakers in Hollywood history, and follow their stories from their earliest personal films to bringing George Lucas’ vision to life. 

 

The series is directed by Lawrence Kasdan, and the executive producers are Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, Justin Wilkes, Lawrence Kasdan, Kathleen Kennedy and Michelle Rejwan.

 

All episodes of “Light & Magic” premiere on July 27, exclusively on Disney+.

 




PHOTOS FROM “OBI-WAN KENOBI” STAR WARS CELEBRATION FAN EVENT

 


Disney+ released photos from the “Obi-Wan Kenobi” fan event at Star Wars Celebration attended by stars Ewan McGregor, Hayden Christensen, Moses Ingram, Bonnie Piesse, Rupert Friend, Indira Varma, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Simone Kessell, Benny Safdie, Jimmy Smits and Vivien Blair. Director/executive producer Deborah Chow and executive producer Joby Harold were also in attendance for the event, which featured a surprise premiere of the first two episodes of the highly anticipated limited series, now streaming exclusively on Disney+.

 

The story begins 10 years after the dramatic events of “Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith” where Obi-Wan Kenobi faced his greatest defeat—the downfall and corruption of his best friend and Jedi apprentice, Anakin Skywalker, who turned to the dark side as evil Sith Lord Darth Vader. 

 

“Obi-Wan Kenobi” stars Ewan McGregor, reprising his role as the iconic Jedi Master, and also marks the return of Hayden Christensen in the role of Darth Vader. Joining the cast are Moses Ingram, Joel Edgerton, Bonnie Piesse, Kumail Nanjiani, Indira Varma, Rupert Friend, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Sung Kang, Simone Kessell and Benny Safdie.  “Obi-Wan Kenobi” is directed by Deborah Chow and executive-produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, Deborah Chow, Ewan McGregor and Joby Harold.

 

The first to episodes of “Obi-Wan Kenobi” are now streaming on Disney+. Following the premiere, the series will stream weekly on Wednesdays, until the finale on Wednesday, June 22.








First Look Image of the next installment of Indiana Jones

 


Star Harrison Ford and filmmakers James Mangold, Kathleen Kennedy and Frank Marshall of the upcoming fifth installment of the “Indiana Jones” franchise were on hand to wish five-time Academy Award®-winning composer John Williams a happy 90th birthday today at Star Wars Celebration in Anaheim, California. They delighted the enthusiastic fans with an early photo from the film which opens in theaters on June 30, 2023. As on all four previous “Indiana Jones” films, Williams is composing the score for the new film.

 

Harrison Ford returns to the role of the legendary hero archaeologist for this fifth installment of the iconic franchise. Starring along with Ford are Phoebe Waller-Bridge (“Fleabag”), Mads Mikkelsen (“Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore”), Antonio Banderas (“Pain and Glory”), Boyd Holbrook (“Logan”), Shaunette Renee Wilson (“Black Panther”), Thomas Kretschmann (“Das Boot”) and Toby Jones (“Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”). Directed by James Mangold (“Ford v Ferrari,”), Kathleen Kennedy, Frank Marshall and Simon Emanuel serve as producers, with Steven Spielberg as executive producer. 



Thursday, May 26, 2022

DISNEY+ UNVEILS TEASER TRAILER FOR “WILLOW”

 


Disney+ unveiled the teaser trailer for Lucasfilm and Imagine Entertainment’s “Willow” an all-new live-action fantasy adventure series based on the classic 1988 feature film, at the Lucasfilm studio showcase panel at Star Wars Celebration in Anaheim today. “Willow” will premiere November 30, 2022, exclusively on Disney+.

 

An epic period fantasy series with a modern sensibility set in an enchanted land of breathtaking beauty, “Willow” features a diverse international cast with Jonathan Kasdan, Ron Howard, Wendy Mericle, Kathleen Kennedy, and Michelle Rejwan serving as executive producers. The story began with an aspiring magician from a Nelwyn village and an infant girl destined to unite the realms, who together helped destroy an evil queen and banish the forces of darkness. Now, in a magical world where brownies, sorcerers, trolls, and other mystical creatures flourish, the adventure continues, as an unlikely group of heroes set off on a dangerous quest to places far beyond their home, where they must face their inner demons and come together to save their world. 

 



DISNEY+ RELEASES “ANDOR” TRAILER FROM STAR WARS CELEBRATION

 


Disney+ is pleased to share the trailer from its upcoming series “Andor” that was featured this morning at Star Wars Celebration. The new, original series from Lucasfilm takes place prior to the events of “Rogue One” and launches exclusively on Disney+ August 31, with the first two episodes. 

 

The “Andor” series will explore a new perspective from the Star Wars galaxy, focusing on Cassian Andor’s journey to discover the difference he can make. The series brings forward the tale of the burgeoning rebellion against the Empire and how people and planets became involved. It’s an era filled with danger, deception and intrigue where Cassian will embark on the path that is destined to turn him into a rebel hero.

  

Diego Luna returns as Cassian Andor and is joined by cast members Genevieve O’Reilly, Stellan Skarsgård, Adria Arjona, Denise Gough and Kyle Soller. The executive producers are Kathleen Kennedy, Sanne Wohlenberg, Diego Luna and Michelle Rejwan. Tony Gilroy is the creator and showrunner.


Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Marvel Studios’ “Thor: Love and Thunder” – New Trailer and Poster

 


A new trailer and poster are now available for Marvel Studios’ “Thor: Love and Thunder,” revealing new details about the God of Thunder’s latest adventure—including a trek to Olympus where Zeus (Russell Crowe) reigns supreme. The film finds Thor (Chris Hemsworth) on a journey unlike anything he’s ever faced – a search for self-discovery. But his retirement is interrupted by a galactic killer known as Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale), who seeks the extinction of the gods. To combat the threat, Thor enlists the help of King Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), Korg (Taika Waititi) and ex-girlfriend Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), who – to Thor’s surprise – inexplicably wields his magical hammer, Mjolnir, as the Mighty Thor. Together, they embark upon a harrowing cosmic adventure to uncover the mystery of the God Butcher’s vengeance and stop him before it’s too late. Directed by Taika Waititi (“Thor: Ragnarok,” “Jojo Rabbit”) and produced by Kevin Feige and Brad Winderbaum, “Thor: Love and Thunder” opens in U.S. theaters July 8, 2022.

DISNEY+ TO DEBUT DISNEY ANIMATION’S ALL-NEW SERIES “BAYMAX!” ON JUNE 29

 


In celebration of National Streaming Day, Disney+ has released a new trailer and key art for Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “Baymax!” Streaming exclusively on Disney+ on June 29, the all-new series of healthcare capers returns to the fantastical city of San Fransokyo where the affable, inflatable, inimitable healthcare companion robot, Baymax, sets out to do what he was programmed to do: help others. “I thought it would be fun to do a Disney+ series with Baymax interacting with normal folks,” said series creator Don Hall, who helmed 2014’s Oscar®-winning film “Big Hero 6.” “In each of our six episodes, Baymax just wants to help someone—and a lot of times they don’t want to be helped. He sets out to fix a physical issue that he's identified, and in the process, gets to a deeper, more emotional place and can be almost transformative in that role.”

 

“Baymax!” is produced by Roy Conli and Bradford Simonsen. The series’ episodes are directed by Dean Wellins (Eps 1, 2, 6), Lissa Treiman (Ep 3), Dan Abraham (Ep 4) and Mark Kennedy (Ep 5). Screenwriter is Cirocco Dunlap. Scott Adsit returns as the voice of Baymax. Voice talent featured in episodes include Ryan Potter, Maya Rudolph, Emily Kuroda, Lilimar, Zeno Robinson and Jaboukie Young-White.

 

About Disney+

Disney+ is the dedicated streaming home for movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic, along with The Simpsons and much more. In select international markets, it also includes the new general entertainment content brand, Star. The flagship direct-to-consumer streaming service from The Walt Disney Company, Disney+ is part of the Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution segment. The service offers commercial-free streaming alongside an ever-growing collection of exclusive originals, including feature-length films, documentaries, live-action and animated series, and short-form content. With unprecedented access to Disney’s long history of incredible film and television entertainment, Disney+ is also the exclusive streaming home for the newest releases from The Walt Disney Studios. Disney+ is available as a standalone streaming service or as part of The Disney Bundle that gives subscribers access to Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+. For more, visit disneyplus.com, or find the Disney+ app on most mobile and connected TV devices.


Tuesday, May 17, 2022

MARVEL STUDIOS’ “SHE-HULK: ATTORNEY AT LAW” TO DEBUT ON DISNEY+ AUGUST 17

 


Disney+ has released a new trailer and key art for Marvel Studios’ “She-Hulk: Attorney at Law.” Streaming exclusively on Disney+ beginning August 17, the new comedy series stars Tatiana Maslany as She-Hulk/Jennifer Walters, a lawyer who specializes in superhuman-oriented legal cases. 

 

Executive producer Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios and chief creative officer of Marvel, welcomed Tatiana Maslany to The Walt Disney Company’s 2022 Upfront presentation this afternoon at Basketball City on Pier 36 in New York. The pair shared details about the upcoming series, including the August 17 launch date, and debuted the new trailer for attendees. 

 

Directed by Kat Coiro (Episodes 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9) and Anu Valia (Episodes 5, 6, 7) with Jessica Gao as head writer, “She-Hulk: Attorney at Law” follows Jennifer Walters as she navigates the complicated life of a single, 30-something attorney who also happens to be a green 6-foot-7-inch superpowered hulk. The nine-episode series welcomes a host of MCU vets, including Mark Ruffalo as Smart Hulk, Tim Roth as Emil Blonsky/the Abomination, and Benedict Wong as Wong. The cast also includes Ginger Gonzaga, Josh Segarra, Jameela Jamil, Jon Bass and Renée Elise Goldsberry. Executive producers are Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Brad Winderbaum, Kat Coiro and Jessica Gao. Co-executive producers are Wendy Jacobson and Jennifer Booth. 


The Beatles: Get Back docuseries arrives on a Blu-ray Collector’s Set and DVD July 12

 


LOS ANGELES, CA (May 17, 2022) –Acclaimed director Peter Jackson’s stunning docuseries The Beatles: Get Back will now be available to own on a Blu-ray Collector’s Set and DVD. The series offers unprecedented access to the world’s most iconic band as they prepare to record the Let It Be album. 

 

Fans and critics everywhere have celebrated the “mesmerizing” (Kenneth Womack, Salon.com), “epic” (Tim Glanfield, RadioTimes.com) and “extraordinarily intimate” series (Sheila O’Malley, RogerEbert.com). 

 

A winner at both the Producers Guild of America and American Cinema Editors Awards, The Beatles: Get Back is also Certified-Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes™. Travel back in time and witness the creative process of the Fab Four by adding The Beatles: Get Back to your collection on Blu-ray and DVD July 12. 


Series Synopsis 

Directed by Peter Jackson, The Beatles: Get Back is a three-part documentary series that takes audiences back in time to the band’s intimate recording sessions. The documentary showcases the warmth, camaraderie and creative genius that defined the legacy of the iconic foursome, and is compiled from 60 hours of unseen footage shot in January 1969 (under the supervision of Michael Lindsay-Hogg and his director of photography Tony Richmond) and more than 150 hours of unheard audio, all of which has been brilliantly restored. Also featured – for the first time in its entirety – is The Beatles’ last live performance as a group: the unforgettable rooftop concert on London’s Savile Row, as well as other songs and classic compositions featured on the band’s final two albums, Abbey Road and Let It Be

PRODUCTION STARTS IN ATLANTA FOR MARVEL STUDIOS’ “ECHO” – SERIES STREAMS ON DISNEY+ IN 2023

 


Production is underway in Atlanta on Marvel Studios’ “Echo,” a series streaming exclusively on Disney+ in 2023. Alaqua Cox (“Hawkeye”) stars as the unforgiving Maya Lopez, who made her MCU debut in 2021 in Marvel Studios’ “Hawkeye” as a deaf gang leader who was determined to make Ronin aka Clint Barton pay for his own vengeful deeds. First-look image is now available.

 

Streaming exclusively on Disney+ in 2023, the origin story of Echo revisits Maya Lopez, whose ruthless behavior in New York City catches up with her in her hometown. She must face her past, reconnect with her Native American roots and embrace the meaning of family and community if she ever hopes to move forward. “Echo” also stars Chaske Spencer (“Wild Indian,” “The English”), Tantoo Cardinal (“Killers of the Flower Moon,” “Stumptown”), Devery Jacobs (FX’s “Reservation Dogs,” “American Gods”) and Cody Lightning (“Hey, Viktor!” “Four Sheets to the Wind”), with Graham Greene (“1883,” “Goliath”) and Zahn McClarnon (“Dark Winds,” FX’s “Reservation Dogs”).

 

Episodes of the series are directed by Sydney Freeland (Navajo) and Catriona McKenzie (Gunaikurnai). Executive producers are Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Brad Winderbaum, Stephen Broussard, Richie Palmer, Marion Dayre and Jason Gavin (Blackfeet). Co-executive producers are Amy Rardin, Sydney Freeland, Christina King (Seminole) and Jennifer Booth.

Monday, May 16, 2022

Pixar Releases Details on Their Next Film, "Elemental"

 

Pixar Animation Studios revealed details about its 27th feature film, “Elemental,” which will release on June 16, 2023. Directed by Peter Sohn (“The Good Dinosaur,” “Partly Cloudy” short) and produced by Denise Ream (“The Good Dinosaur,” “Cars 2”), the film journeys alongside an unlikely pair, Ember and Wade, in a city where fire-, water-, land- and air-residents live together. The fiery young woman and the go-with-the-flow guy are about to discover something elemental: how much they actually have in common. 

 

“Elemental” is an original film inspired by Sohn’s childhood in New York. “My parents emigrated from Korea in the early 1970s and built a bustling grocery store in the Bronx,” said the director. “We were among many families who ventured to a new land with hopes and dreams—all of us mixing into one big salad bowl of cultures, languages and beautiful little neighborhoods. That’s what led me to ‘Elemental.’

 

“Our story is based on the classic elements—fire, water, land and air,” Sohn continued. “Some elements mix with each other, and some don’t. What if these elements were alive?”

Thursday, May 12, 2022

PHOTOS FROM “OBI-WAN KENOBI” PRESS EVENT IN LONDON


 Today, Disney+ released photos of director Deborah Chow and stars Ewan McGregor, Hayden Christensen and Moses Ingram at a press event in London in support of “Obi-Wan Kenobi,” a new limited series from Lucasfilm that will stream exclusively on Disney+ beginning May 27.

The story begins 10 years after the dramatic events of “Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith” where Obi-Wan Kenobi faced his greatest defeat—the downfall and corruption of his best friend and Jedi apprentice, Anakin Skywalker, who turned to the dark side as evil Sith Lord Darth Vader. 

 

“Obi-Wan Kenobi” stars Ewan McGregor, reprising his role as the iconic Jedi Master, and also marks the return of Hayden Christensen in the role of Darth Vader. Joining the cast are Moses Ingram, Joel Edgerton, Bonnie Piesse, Kumail Nanjiani, Indira Varma, Rupert Friend, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Sung Kang, Simone Kessell and Benny Safdie.  “Obi-Wan Kenobi” is directed by Deborah Chow and executive-produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, Deborah Chow, Ewan McGregor and Joby Harold.

 

“Obi-Wan Kenobi” will premiere exclusively on Disney+ on Friday, May 27, with the first two episodes. Following the premiere, the series will stream weekly on Wednesdays, until the finale on Wednesday, June 22.







Monday, May 9, 2022

TEASER TRAILER FOR 20TH CENTURY STUDIOS’ “AVATAR: THE WAY OF WATER”

 


BURBANK, Calif. (May 9, 2022) – The teaser trailer for 20th Century Studios’ “Avatar: The Way of Water,” which first debuted in theaters on May 6, is available now.  James Cameron’s first follow-up to his “Avatar,” the highest-grossing film of all time, will open in theaters on December 16.

 

Set more than a decade after the events of the first film, “Avatar: The Way of Water” begins to tell the story of the Sully family (Jake, Neytiri, and their kids), the trouble that follows them, the lengths they go to keep each other safe, the battles they fight to stay alive,  and the tragedies they endure. Directed by James Cameron and produced by Cameron and Jon Landau, the film stars Zoe Saldana, Sam Worthington, Sigourney Weaver, Stephen Lang, Cliff Curtis, Joel David Moore, CCH Pounder, Edie Falco, Jemaine Clement and Kate Winslet. 

 

To whet audiences’ appetites, the studio will re-release “Avatar” in theaters on September 23.


Wednesday, May 4, 2022

DISNEY+ RELEASES NEW TRAILER FOR “OBI-WAN KENOBI”

 


Today, to kick off Star Wars Day, Disney+ released a brand-new trailer for “Obi-Wan Kenobi,” offering a riveting look at the highly anticipated limited series. “Obi-Wan Kenobi” will premiere exclusively on Disney+ on Friday, May 27, with the first two episodes. Following the premiere, the series will stream weekly on Wednesdays, until the finale on Wednesday, June 22.

 

The story begins 10 years after the dramatic events of “Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith” where Obi-Wan Kenobi faced his greatest defeat—the downfall and corruption of his best friend and Jedi apprentice, Anakin Skywalker, who turned to the dark side as evil Sith Lord Darth Vader. 

 

The series stars Ewan McGregor, reprising his role as the iconic Jedi Master, and also marks the return of Hayden Christensen in the role of Darth Vader. Joining the cast are Moses Ingram, Joel Edgerton, Bonnie Piesse, Kumail Nanjiani, Indira Varma, Rupert Friend, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Sung Kang, Simone Kessell and Benny Safdie. 

 

“Obi-Wan Kenobi” is directed by Deborah Chow and executive-produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, Deborah Chow, Ewan McGregor and Joby Harold.


MARVEL STUDIOS’ “DOCTOR STRANGE IN THE MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS” WORLD PREMIERE PHOTOS

 


Monday in Hollywood, stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Olsen, Benedict Wong, Xochitl Gomez, Rachel McAdams, Jett Klyne, Julian Hilliard, Sheila Atim, Adam Hugill and Charlie Norton joined director Sam Raimi, producer Kevin Feige, executive producers Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Eric Carroll and Scott Derrickson, screenwriter Michael Waldron and composer Danny Elfman for a walk down the red carpet to celebrate the world premiere of Marvel Studios’ “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.”

 

Marvel Studios’ “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” opens in theaters this Friday, May 6.














Monday, May 2, 2022

4K Digital Review: Turning Red

 


Turning Red tells the story of 13-year-old Meilin Lee, a Chinese-Canadian girl who discovers one day that she turns into a giant red panda whenever she gets angry or upset. She learns that the transformation is no accident and has to find a solution before the transformation ruins her life. 

The story is largely based on the teenage years of Director Domee Shi and takes a look at puberty and the trials and tribulations of the hormonal responses to becoming a teenager. We also get a vivid look at the differences between ancient cultural traditions and pubescent problems. 

This is one of Pixar's most personal stories to date with a style and tone all its own. The anime-influence, the top notch animation and voice acting make this a journey you will want to take over and over again.


Video:

The 4K, Dolby Vision and HDR streaming video is exceptional from start to finish. There is so much detail put into this film and the clarity of the video really shines.  From the characters, to their clothing, to the environment, the details are just exquisite. And every detail is crisp and clean, from the woodwork of the temple to the pencil sketches in Mei's notebook.  Colors are bright, bold and vivid. Mei's panda form is the standout when it comes to color in terms of brightness and vividness. Black levels are inky and the whites are brilliant. Another outstanding video transfer from Disney. 


Audio:

The Dolby 5.1  Dolby Atmos is quite capable but seems quite reserved throughout most of the movie. The surround sound is fine in crowded scenes as well as in several action sequences. Dialogue is crisp and clear and center channel grounded. 

Bonus Features:

  • Life of a Shot (1080p, 14:36): A fascinating journey with Director Domee Shi and additional crew exploring the vast amount of work that is required to bring just seven shots in the film from concept to finished form, requiring the work and input of every single department in the studio.
  • Build Your Own Boy Band (1080p, 8:38): Discussing the secrets behind the process of building a fictional boy band in 10 easy steps, from listening to a lot of real Boy Band music to crafting dance choreography.
  • Audio Commentary: Director Domee Shi, Producer Lindsey Collins, and Director of Photography Mahyar Abousaeedi offer a well-spoken, informative, but also welcoming and breezy track that explores inspirations, narrative themes, story construction, music, visuals, and so much more.

  • Ani-Mei-Tion (1080p, 9:38): Exploring the film's "snappy" visual style and structure, Anime influences, character design, and more.
  • Deleted Scenes (1080p, 23:40): Following an Introduction are the following scenes: Intro Meilin, Taming the Panda, The Debate, Fei and Christina Hang, 4*Town Dilemma, and Roping in Leo. Some are presented in early storyboard form, others in final form.

Conclusion:

Turning Red is a fun, coming of age story with a lot of heart and wonderful music. While the audio is lacking, the video is stunning and there are some fun extras.

Turning Red is available now on digital and on 4K, Blu-ray and DVD on May 3rd.
Here is the trailer for the video release:


*disclaimer - the digital download was provided for review purposes by Walt Disney Home Entertainment but the opinions are strictly mine alone*