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It’s hard to believe that just two years ago, the very idea of Netflix offering original programming was a novelty. But the gamble paid off from the get-go. While Lilyhammer never quite reached the buzzy heights of later series House of Cards or Orange Is the New Black, it fared well enough to get a second season, and now it’s getting a third.

The company announced the renewal this week. Season 2 hit Netflix on December 13, and Season 3 is expected to debut sometime later this year. Steve Van Zandt will, of course, return in the lead role of a mobster sent to Lillehammer, Norway as part of the witness protection program. [Variety]

After the jump, read all about Netflix’s newest original series Marco Polo.

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Gong Li to Star in Tarsem Singh’s Marco Polo Project

After making a name for himself with lush, visually oriented fantasies like The Fall and March’s Mirror, Mirror, Tarsem Singh could be getting a little more grounded with his newest project. The filmmaker is preparing to direct a historical drama about the explorer Marco Polo. While the iconic figure has yet to be cast, the English-language film has found its first star in the form of Chinese actress Gong Li. More details after the jump.

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The story of Marco Polo has been brought to the screen before and will probably be adapted many times in the future. The next film about the explorer could be directed by Francis Lawrence (I Am Legend) as Warner Bros. has attached the director to a project based on a pitch by Adam Cooper and Bill Collage, who will write a script based on Polo’s adventures. Read More »

john-woo

John Woo hasn’t made an English-language film since 2003′s Paycheck. Arguably he’s made only one good (or only one truly entertaining) film in America, Face/Off, though the Nic Cage war film Windtalkers does have defenders. Leaving the studio system seems like it was the best option for Woo, and in addition to his completed film opus Red Cliff he’s got Jianyu Jianghu (The Swordsman’s World) going now with Michelle Yeoh. But Woo continues to flirt with the idea of making another movie in America, as his lengthy list of attachments shown on IMDB can attest. Now he says there are really two projects he’s interested in making here, and they’re after the jump. Read More »

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