Is minimal design in teasers now the go-to for kids animation franchises? Despicable Me 2 used the approach to pretty cute effect not long ago, and here an international teaser for The Smurfs 2 (which is likely almost exactly the same as the forthcoming US teaser) relies on little but a Smurf, a white backdrop, and an insistent bit of text.┬áIt’s gentle and a little bit silly, like the Smurfs, if not all that memorable.

The real audience for a Smurfs movie won’t care much, I imagine, but the parents buying the tickets might not be all that excited to pony up just yet. Check out the teaser below. Read More »

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Sony Pictures Animation has released the first image of new characters that will be introduced in The Smurfs 2. In the sequel to the 2011 live-action/animation hybrid, Christina Ricci voices Vexy (left) and comedian JB Smoove voices Hackus (right), two new little monsters nicknamed “The Naughties” created by the evil Gargamel (played again by Hank Azaria). See the image after the jump.

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Earlier this year Jonah Hill agreed to star in The Sitter, a comedy in which Hill will play a college dropout who gets into more than he bargained for (like drug deals and car chases) when he agrees to babaysit the children of a family friend.

Now J.B. Smoove (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Max Records (Where the Wild Things Are) and new child actor Kevin Hernandez have all signed on. Read More »

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The Farrelly Brothers start shooting their new film Hall Pass in Atlanta this week, and the cast just got an injection of additional talent. Stephen Merchant and J.B. Smoove will join Owen Wilson, Jenna Fischer and Jason Sudeikis in the film about two husbands (Wilson and Sudeikis) who are given a free pass to have extra-marital adventures for a week. Still don’t get why the title ‘Hall Pass’ applies, but no matter; Merchant and Smoove are great additions. [THR]

After the break, three actors join the indie thriller Retreat, and 50 Cent gets serious. Read More »

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What happens when actor Michael Richards meets The Blacks or Krazee-Eyez Killa? Talk about Trial and Error. I’m pretty sure we’ll be satisfied by the results this fall, as the four cast members of Seinfeld are reuniting for multiple episodes of HBO‘s Curb Your Enthusiasm. While this marks Richards’s first appearance on the uncensored and legendary sitcom of Larry David (Seinfeld co-creator), Jerry Seinfeld, Jason Alexander, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus have all appeared to play and send-up themselves during Curb‘s six-season run. According to EW, the cast hasn’t appeared together on a scripted TV series since their show’s underwhelming finale 11 years ago.

It’ll be veddy cool to see the old sparks fly inside the Bald One’s neurotic, mishap-prone world; but I’m possibly more excited just to see Leon (J.B. Smoove) talk shit and lady advice to Larry again. Let us know what you and Bill Gates think in the comments.

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Are UFC leg-tanglers brawlers the new rapper actors (or “raptors” as coined by Vulture)? Last night, Ultimate Fighting champ, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, was on Jimmy Kimmel Live, where it was announced that he’s a contender for the role of B.A. Baracus in John Singleton‘s upcoming A-Team movie. You can watch the clip here to get a feeling for his mannerisms, and I’ve included a requisite photo with digital flames to the right. Yeah, he already wears that chain everywhere.

Kimmel: Now, what’s going on with your hair…because I heard you’re going to play–not Mr. T–but B.A. Baracus in the A-Team movie.

Rampage: I don’t know what you’re talking about, man. [laughs] No, I don’t know. I gotta audition for it, you know what I’m sayin’? I gotta do a screen test. Hopefully I get the part, hopefully I’m the next B.A. Baracus.

Kimmel: Has anyone broken it to Mr. T that he’s not the new B.A. Baracus?

Rampage: [pause] I pity the fool.

Rampage admitted in the interview that acting scares him more than fighting. He seems like a likable guy, sure, and if this was a Best of the Best straight-to-DVD sequel, I’d say he’s pretty much perfect to play dueling twins. But it’s not. Mr. T deserves better. Rampage might be more agreeable than Ice Cube or Tyrese or David Banner or Kenan Thompson (imagine), but if that’s the sort of B/C-list grab bag Singleton is looking at, why not just call up T or Carl Weathers or Bo Jackson? If we have to keep it inside the ring, Kimbo Slice would be bonkers.

My friend, Shawn, thinks Katt Williams would be a wise choice, and while Katt’s pretty good in GTA4, my choice is jersey-robbin’ J.B. Smoove who plays Leon Black (!!!) on Curb Your Enthusiasm. That’s the sound of me dropping a mic on stage. Gameover.

Discuss: Rampage or Mehpage? Who should play Baracus? Is UFC the new Hollywood talent pool?

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