Judy Blume's "Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret" coming to to big screen

A half a century after Judy Blume's classic young adult novel Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret was first published, it's going to be made into a film. Blume has consistently refused to allow her books to become movies. Fremon Craig who wrote and directed The Edge of Seventeen will adapt "Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret" for the screen and direct the movie with James L. Brooks producing. Apparently Blume hit it off with them during a trip to Hollywood in August. From Deadline:

“It is this right of passage for women and girls,” Fremon Craig told Deadline. “It’s rare for me to run into a woman or girl who hasn’t read it and every time I’ve mentioned it to a woman, they clutch their heart and let out this joyful gasp. There’s something so timely and full of truth and I remember for me that at that age, it felt like a life raft at a time when you’re lost and searching and unsure. This book comes along and tells you you’re not alone. Women remember where they were when they read it. I can’t think of another book you can say that about...."

“I got the greatest email from Judy where she said if someone were to make a film of one of her books, she hoped it would have the same tone and feeling that The Edge of Seventeen had,” Fremon Craig said. “It’s maybe the greatest compliment I’ve ever gotten, because she has always been a North star for me as a writer.

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Werner Herzog is making a documentary about meteorites

Fireball is Werner Herzog's forthcoming documentary "about meteorites and comets and their influence on mythology and religion," according to Variety. He's once again collaborating with British geoscientist Clive Oppenheimer, his partner on the volcano documentary Into the Inferno. From Variety:

The producers of “Into the Inferno,” Andre Singer and Lucki Stipetic, are both on board “Fireball.” Herzog and Oppenheimer will co-direct. They will once more go globe-trotting, this time to visit sites that yield insight into comets and meteorites and help them understand what they can tell us about the origins of life on Earth.

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Excellent trailer for Pee-wee's Big Halloween

I only wish that this was the real new Halloween film.

It’s been 40 years since Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) survived a vicious attack from the crazy and zany Pee-wee Herman on Halloween night. But when Pee-wee escapes, will her family be safe from what is certainly to be his biggest Halloween adventure ever?

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Artist hand writes entire 'Jurassic Park' script, creates line-art of a scene from the movie

Now that's dedication. Read the rest

M. Night Shyamalan's Glass is looking pretty good in this new trailer

It's taken M. Night Shyamalan close to two decades and three films to fully realize his vision of a world full of super-powered heroes and villains, but here we are! Eighteen years after Unbreakable popped and close to two after Split was released, Glass is here. Well, almost. It'll be hitting theaters on January 19th.

I know that M. Night Shyamalan's plopped out a few turds over the years, but I have faith in his vision as a filmmaker and as a writer. Fingers crossed that Glass is just as good as it looks. Read the rest

Molly Ringwald on the gross sexual behavior in Sixteen Candles

In April, Molly Ringwald penned a piece for the New Yorker about the sexual harassment and assault in classic 1980s teen films like Sixteen Candles and the Breakfast Club, in which she starred. (Prime example in the clip below.) This weekend, NPR aired an interview with Ringwald in which she revisited the subject. A few highlights:

You know, when I made those movies with John Hughes, his intention was to not make Porky's or Animal House. But I think, you know, as everyone says and I do believe is true, that times were different and what was acceptable then is definitely not acceptable now and nor should it have been then, but that's sort of the way that it was ... I feel very differently about the movies now and it's a difficult position for me to be in because there's a lot that I like about them. And of course I don't want to appear ungrateful to John Hughes, but I do oppose a lot of what is in those movies...

I believe that there is still a lot of good in the films and there's a lot that I'm proud of. And I feel like in a lot of ways they've touched teenagers and sparked a conversation that is important. And having a teenage daughter myself, I know that it's not always easy to get teenagers to talk. But these films sort of break through that. You know? There's something that really touches teenagers, especially The Breakfast Club I feel like sort of gives them permission to talk about their feelings — says that teenagers' feelings really matter.

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Weird details you probably missed in Disney movies

If you're a Disney-o-phile, say goodbye to the next few hours of your productivity, as you scroll through the thread and then share with your kids or your Disney fandom friends. Read the rest

Curtains Up, a short film on movies and meditation featuring David Lynch

Stella McCartney profiles David Lynch in this moody piece on the joys of cinema and transcendental meditation. Read the rest

MOVIES: A first look at Tom Hanks as 'Mister Rogers'

What a well-timed tweet this one was, from Sony Pictures today during the worst day on Capitol Hill ever. Read the rest

"Almost Famous" will be a stage musical

Film director and journalist Cameron Crowe is adapting his fantastic 2000 film "Almost Famous" as a stage musical. Of course Crowe based the original film on his own life as a teen journalist for Rolling Stone magazine in the 1970s. From Rolling Stone:

Crowe has been developing the musical for the past couple years and first teased the project on Twitter (below) with a video of composer Tom Kitt performing at the piano. Jeremy Herrin (People, Places and Things) will direct the show, with Crowe’s book, music by Tom Kitt (American Idiot, Next to Normal) and lyrics by Kitt and Crowe. No further information on when or where the musical will premiere has been announced at this time.

“It doesn’t even feel like work,” Crowe continues. “It feels like a new adventure, a natural progression but still true to the question that started it all. ‘What do you love about music?’. Can’t wait to bring it to you in the coming months.”

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That Time Danny DeVito Saved Michael Douglas' Life (Surprise Ending!)

I was not expecting the surprise ending to Danny DeVito's retelling of how he once saved the life of his 'Romancing the Stone' co-star Michael Douglas on location in Mexico.

😳

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Trailer for Capernaum, a "neorealist movie" about street kids, slum life, modern slavery and migration

Lebanese director Nadine Labaki's Capernaum won this year's Cannes Jury Prize; it premiered in Lebanon this week and will be in North American cinemas starting December 14; It's a "neorealist movie" with an all-amateur cast that sheds some light on the life of outcasts: street children, inhabitants of slums, while tackling modern slavery and illegal immigration. Read the rest

The Institute of Gremlins 2 Studies, an interview with the founder

The Institute of Gremlins 2 Studies publishes "world-class commentary and analysis of the film Gremlins 2: The New Batch" on its Twitter account @G2Institute and, allegedly, a scholarly publication titled The Quarterly Journal of Gremlins 2 Studies. Joe Dante, director of Gremlins and Gremlins 2, seems to dig it. At The Quietus, Robert Barry interrogates the anonymous director of the institute:

What prompted you to start this account?

What prompted me to found the prestigious Institute of Gremlins 2 Studies? That’s obvious. If you look around at the world today, you will probably feel like someone trapped in an over-the-top parody of past events. Only one film fully captures this feeling. Just look at how other accounts have attempted to imitate us using other films. Inevitably they all fail. Nobody holds a candle to the great work our Institute is doing. The reason for their failure is simple – only Gremlins 2 can be exhaustively returned to, combed over, analyzed in this way. What “genius” people may see in the Institute is only a reflection of the genius of Gremlins

Why Gremlins 2?

There are many reasons why Gremlins 2 remains relevant, even twenty-eght years after the film’s release. One important reason is the way the film adapts the cartoonish ethos of Looney Tunes, which allows it to treat reality with a certain playfulness and plasticity. In recent years this has become popular again – surreal humor and elaborate descriptions of cartoon violence are mainstays of internet humor, perhaps reflecting a media and political environment that has become unmoored from reality.

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Ted Chiang lecture on interspecies communications

Avi Solomon writes, "Author Ted Chiang (previously) discusses the making of The Great Silence as well as other works addressing interspecies communication, including 'Story of Your Life,' the novella which was adapted into the 2016 feature film, Arrival." Read the rest

Why For-Profit Academic Publishers Are Laughing All the Way to the Bank

If you’re not an academic or scientist, then you probably have no idea how off kilter research scholarship has become.  Read the rest

Captain Marvel's first trailer is here and it looks promising

It's been a decade since Marvel launched their shared cinematic universe with the first Iron Man movie. In all that time, they've never had a film with a female lead. That's about to change. In 2019, Captain Marvel will be coming to theaters. While this trailer only gives a quick taste of what we can expect, it's enough for me to feel hopeful for a great movie. Read the rest

At Eternity's Gate looks so good it'll make you want to cut your own ear off

I heard a rumor that Willem Dafoe will be filming a movie for Disney near where I've been dry camping these past six months. All of the employees at the lodge where he'll be staying have been instructed to only speak to him if he talks to them first. Gross.

But not quite gross enough to keep me from wanting to see At Eternity's Gate, a new film starring Dafoe about the trials and tribulations in the life of Vincent Van Gogh. Read the rest

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