Sony "took most of the bite out of" football concussion movie to please N.F.L.


The screenwriter claims that cuts make the film “better and richer and fairer," but emails exposed by hackers show studio lawyers altered the film to avoid tangling with the National Football League.

The New York Times:

When Sony Pictures Entertainment decided to make a movie focusing on the death and dementia professional football players have endured from repeated hits to the head — and the N.F.L.’s efforts toward a cover-up — it signed Will Smith to star as one of the first scientists to disclose the problem. It named the film bluntly, “Concussion.”

In the end even Sony, which unlike most other major studios in Hollywood has no significant business ties to the N.F.L., found itself softening some points it might have made against the multibillion-dollar sports enterprise that controls the nation’s most-watched game.

In dozens of studio emails unearthed by hackers, Sony executives; the director, Peter Landesman; and representatives of Mr. Smith discussed how to avoid antagonizing the N.F.L. by altering the script and marketing the film more as a whistle-blower story, rather than a condemnation of football or the league … Another email on Aug. 1, 2014, said some “unflattering moments for the N.F.L.” were deleted or changed, while in another note on July 30, 2014, a top Sony lawyer is said to have taken “most of the bite” out of the film “for legal reasons with the N.F.L. and that it was not a balance issue.” Other emails in September 2014 discuss an aborted effort to reach out to the N.F.L.

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Users of Popcorn Time, movie streaming app, sued


Mark wrote about the "just works" movie app a while ago, but if you're a fan, you're on a lawyer's hitlist. Read the rest

“Wire Cutters,” a wonderful short film on the rough lives of off-world robot miners


“A chance encounter proves fateful for 2 robots mining on a desolate planet.”

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“Meru,” a new film on the quest to scale an “unclimbable“ mountain in India


For decades, the Shark’s Fin on Mount Meru in Northern India was thought by most elite climbers to to unclimbable.

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Sun City Girls' Alan Bishop shares his love for Ennio Morricone

Alan Bishop, bassist/vocalist of Sun City Girls and global music collector, wrote an excellent post about his favorite film scores by legendary Italian composer Ennio Morricone. Read the rest

Straight Outta Compton: the Ben Folds edition


Kern Saxton recut the Straight Outta Compton trailer to Ben Fold's cover of Dr. Dre's "Bitches Ain't Shit." Read the rest

Watch Bill Withers play "Ain't No Sunshine" in 1971


Withers was inspired by the film "Days of Wine and Roses," starring Lee Remick and Jack Lemmon. Read the rest

Regal promises security-theater bag-searches in America's largest cinema chain

Going to the movies is getting airportified: your knapsacks, bags and purses will be searched on the way in to stop you from carrying in guns that you don't stick in your waistband or in a shoulder-holster. Read the rest

Buy Buffalo Bill's home from Silence of the Lambs


Buffalo Bill's home from Silence of the Lambs is for sale in Perryopolis, PA. The four-bedroom home is listed at $300k but sadly doesn't actually have a pit in the basement, so it will have to find somewhere else to rub the lotion on its skin. Read the rest

3D printed Immortan Joe mask

Andrew writes, "I made Immortan Joe's mask from Mad Max: Fury Road!" Read the rest

Excellent weird makeup from Army of Darkness


Bruce Campbell is wearing a face prosthetic, posing next to Sam Raimi's Army of Darkness (1992) assistant camera operator James Fitzgerald. Read the rest

Piracy vs the MPAA: yet another box-office record smashed

The movie studios continue to demand Lord High Internet Executioner status because "piracy is destroying the film industry," even as box office records are smashed anew: Straight Outta Compton put its studio over the $2B mark in record time. Read the rest

Byron Crawford's history of Dr. Dre is the best thing I've read on Medium

Dr. Dre
“Straight Outta Compton.” A terrific read before listening to the original album or seeing the film.

Deleted scenes from Mad Max: Fury Road, starring "Temp Baby!"


From the bonus features on the Mad Max: Fury Road (Blu-ray + DVD + UltraViolet) due out next month. NSFW. Read the rest

Furiosa's tampon ad

This is a million times better than oblique references to bloating and neat test-tubes of thin blue liquid. (via That Book Smell) Read the rest

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