Aladdin's Genie and Sebastian

Even casual Disney fans have likely noticed that the studio’s various animated features often contain subtle nods at each other. Rapunzel from Tangled has Disney fairy tale books in her collection, Nani from Lilo & Stitch has a Mulan poster, et cetera. But what if these aren’t mere sight gags from playful animators. What if, instead, they’re hard evidence that all of these movies take place in the same universe?

In an homage of sorts to Jon Negroni’s The Pixar Theory, Josh Butler posits that 30 of Disney’s animated features share a world. His thesis requires some suspension of disbelief — for one thing, it involves a lot of magic and time travel — but it’s fun to think about nonetheless. Hit the jump to see how Butler’s theory shakes out.

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In the early ’70s, Jerry Lewis directed and starred in The Day the Clown Cried, which would go on to become of the most notorious “lost” films in cinema history. In fact the film isn’t really lost — it exists, and Lewis has a copy. Harry Shearer is among the very few people that claim to have seen it, and Lewis says it will never, ever be released.

But this isn’t just a Jerry Lewis movie. It’s the Jerry Lewis Holocaust movie, where he plays a German clown arrested for ragging on Hitler, and who ends up in a concentration camp for political prisoners before being shipped to Auschwitz. There he’s used to lead kids into the gas chamber, and Lewis finally joins the kids inside the room, giving his last performance . That’s some seriously dark, weird stuff, and it is reportedly even weirder to watch than it sounds. According to Shearer, the idea may have been to release it in a string of family-oriented theaters that Lewis owned at the time.

The movie has been completely suppressed over the years, with varying reasons given for its disappearance. But now some new behind the scenes footage has shown up online, and it’s probably as much of the movie as you’ll ever see. Check it out below. Read More »

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For all the hate, garbage and stupidity the Internet brings us on a daily basis, every once in a while it provides a global platform for something awesome. In this case, Jon Negroni‘s Pixar Theory. Negroni wrote a post that has been circulating since last week which goes through every single Pixar movie since Toy Story and surmises they’re all set in the same universe.

So, for example, the theory states Brave sets a precedent for why animals can interact with humans, which explains a lot of Ratatouille, which maybe inspired the characters in Up to invent tech to communicate with their animals, which possibly inspired the beginnings of Buy-N-Large from Wall-E, and so on and so on. It’s obviously much more detailed than that and I totally don’t believe it’s “real,” from Pixar’s perspective, but it’s a fun read that does make some sense.

Below, we’ll link to the original post and even show you a video that details it. Read More »

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Leave it to the literate and persistently perverse musician/lyricist/screenwriter Nick Cave to totally upend the basic idea of a Hollywood sequel. (This is the man who, for instance, incarnated his fascination with violent folk songs by tossing out all subtlety on the album Murder Ballads, which among other tunes contains an almost shockingly profane revamp of the song ‘Stagger Lee.’)

You may or may not have heard that Russell Crowe once called up Cave to hire him as a screenwriter for Gladiator 2. Cave had written only one other script at the time, Ghosts… Of the Civil Dead; he’s since written The Proposition and Lawless, among other unproduced scripts. ”Hey Russell, didn’t you die in Gladiator?” asked Cave. Crowe’s response: “Yeah, you sort that out.”

The basic news of Cave writing a Gladiator sequel script surfaced years back, and in fact the script itself has done the internet rounds. (It’s embedded below, and after reading the leadup to it, you’ll want to give it a spin.) Cave recently appeared on Marc Maron’s podcast, and talked at length about that project. That’s the source of the quotes above, and just wait ’till you hear how he sorted things out. Hint: Cave’s solution involved a blend of Roman and Christian religions for a story he wanted to call Christ Killer. Yeah, wonder why that didn’t get made? Read More »

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Briefly: As speculation about the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe runs rampant, be it Guardians of the Galaxy, Robert Downey Jr., Doctor Strange or strange release dates, a new wrinkle can now be added. Vin Diesel has taken to Facebook to say:

Marvel has requested a meeting… no idea what for… haha, you probably know better than me…

Speculate below. Read More »

Martin Scorsese in Campus Life

Under most circumstances, a Martin Scorsese / Ray Liotta reunion would be cause for celebration. In the case of Campus Life, however, their team-up is more puzzling than enticing.

Jesse McCartney leads the cast of the indie thriller, about a group of college kids trying to uncover a supernatural secret. But based on the trailer, the bigger question may be what Scorsese and Liotta are doing in this seemingly low-rent Chronicle imitation. Hit the jump to watch the trailer.

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“From the moment it launched just three short weeks ago, it was so clear to us that six-second loops of video, edited in-phone, and posted in real time was and will be the future of film distribution.” So says Oscilloscope’s “Minister of Informative Updates” Bruce Farnsworth, who is currently releasing the upcoming film, It’s A Disaster, on the Vine video app.

Obviously, he’s joking.

What’s not a joke is that the Oscilloscope Vine account (accessible through their Twitter @OscopeLabs) is releasing a sizeable amount of It’s A Disaster, Todd Berger‘s upcoming apocalyptic comedy starring David Cross and Julia Stiles. Check out a few examples below and read the full release. Read More »

Oscar loves a good historical drama, and this year’s crop of Best Picture nominees has plenty that fit that mold, whether realistically (Zero Dark Thirty) or metaphorically (Beasts of the Southern Wild). But few of the films can actually boast of having made history.

In depicting the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment abolishing slavery, Steven Spielberg‘s Lincoln has helped to ratify the legislation in Mississippi. And yes, I do mean Lincoln the film and not Lincoln the sixteenth president. Read more after the jump.

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