Rose Byrne and Oprah Winfrey in The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

Even if you’ve never heard of Henrietta Lacks, there’s a good chance she’s impacted your life in some way. In 1951, while Lacks was undergoing treatment for cervical cancer at Johns Hopkins Hospital, her cells were harvested without her knowledge or consent and used to create HeLa cell line. While Lacks herself passed away that same year, her cells have lived on, aiding in many medical breakthroughs including the polio vaccine.

While the scientific community has been aware of Lacks’ unwitting contribution for decades, her story became much more widely known to the general public in 2010 thanks to The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, a nonfiction tome by Rebecca Skloot. Now it’s going the way of many other bestselling books, and becoming a movie. Oprah Winfrey leads HBO’s feature film as Henrietta’s daughter Deborah, and Rose Byrne as Skloot. Hamilton‘s Renée Elise Goldsberry plays Henrietta. Watch the Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks trailer below. Read More »

terms of endearment remake

The director behind The Butler and The PaperboyLee Daniels, might remake James L. Brooks‘ beautiful 1983 film, Terms of Endearment. Brooks’ made his directorial debut with his adaptation of Larry McMurtry‘s novel, which won Best Picture, Best Director, and more at the Academy Awards. It’s a masterful, honest tearjerker Paramount is eying Daniels and Oprah Winfrey to remake.

Below, learn more about the Terms of Endearment remake.

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Baskets Trailer

The cast for director Ava DuVernay‘s A Wrinkle in Time adaptation keeps getting better and better. The film is already set to star Mindy Kaling, Reese Witherspoon, Oprah Winfrey, Chris Pine, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and in the lead role, Storm Reid. A few more additions to the cast have been announced, including Zach Galifianakis, who we most recently saw in Keeping Up with the Joneses. Below, learn more about the Zach Galifianakis A Wrinkle in Time casting.

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Queen Sugar trailer

It’s been two years since Selma turned Ava DuVernay into one of the hottest, most in-demand filmmakers working today. But she hasn’t actually put out another movie since then. So what’s she been up to in the past couple of years? Well, among other things, putting together Queen Sugar, a new drama launching on Oprah Winfrey‘s OWN network this fall.

Based on the novel by Natalie Baszile, Queen Sugar chronicles the story of the three Bordelon siblings, Nova (Rutina Wesley of True Blood), Charlotte (Dawn Lyen-Gardner), and Ralph Angel (Kofi Siriboe). The family is reunited when the patriarch dies, leaving behind an 800-acre sugar cane farm in Louisiana. Also starring are Tina Lifford and Omar J. Dorsey. The premise looks ripe for bittersweet drama, and the first Queen Sugar trailer certainly delivers on that front. Watch it below.   Read More »

Richard Pryor Biopic

A biopic about legendary comedian Richard Pryor has been developing long enough that Eddie Murphy was once considered for the lead role, but has since been hired to play the father of the iconic comic, who will instead be played by Mike Epps. The project finally seemed like it was on track to make it in front of cameras with Lee Daniels at the helm, but the filmmaker behind The Butler and Precious has now fallen away from the project, leaving it without a director.

Find out more about Lee Daniels leaving the Richard Pryor biopic below. Read More »

Tracy Morgan playing Redd Foxx

This past August, we learned that the long-gestating Richard Pryor biopic was finally moving forward, with Mike Epps leading the film to be directed by Lee Daniels from a script by Dreamgirls scribe Bill Condon and Fox’s Empire collaborator Danny Strong.

And now the production has just gained a new cast member to play another iconic comedian. We have word that Tracy Morgan will be playing Redd Foxx, the stand-up comedian and star of the hit classic comedy series Sanford and Son. Find out how Foxx fits into the Pryor biopic below. Read More »

Richard Pryor biopic

After kicking around development hell for years, The Weinstein Company is finally getting a biopic about legendary comedian Richard Pryor off the ground, and the cast has been finalized for production to begin in March.

As reported just over a year ago, Mike Epps will be taking the lead role as the late Richard Pryor, the man responsible for inspiring a whole new generation of comics and changing the face of stand-up comedy forever. In addition, some of the primary supporting cast has been confirmed and expanded as Eddie Murphy also joins the Richard Pryor biopic. Read More »

Suicide Squad

Warner Bros. has just revealed the cast of David Ayer‘s Suicide Squad, and it is a huge ensemble. Jared Leto is the Joker, Will Smith is Deadshot, Tom Hardy is Rick Flagg, Margot Robbie is Harley Quinn, Jai Courtney is Boomerang and Cara Delevinge is Enchantress. The film is scheduled for release August 5, 2016. Read more about the Suicide Squad cast below. Read More »

Martin Luther King Jr miniseries

David Simon, creator of The Wire, has found his next project: a Martin Luther King Jr miniseries. Simon is attached to an upcoming HBO miniseries based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning history books America: In The King Years, by Taylor Branch. Oprah Winfrey‘s Harpo Productions owns the rights and will produce.

Simon will reportedly write the first episode and oversee the six-hour long show with his Treme co-creator Eric Overmyer. The novels cover the bulk of the civil rights movement from 1954-1968. Read More »

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butler-trailer-header

Left to his own devices Lee Daniels makes films that are eccentric and sometimes just way the hell out there. (The Paperboy) But he has called his newest film, The Butler, “a big compromise” and explained that the film might be “the closest I will come to as a work-for-hire.” Does that mean that, on the relative scale of whackadoo films, The Butler will be far closer to “normal” than anything else he’s made?

Hard to say at this point, but the first trailer suggests that there’s some weird stuff going on here. There’s the parade of cameo players appearing as a string of US Presidents. Among them is John Cusack‘s turn as Richard Nixon, which is… interesting. Then there’s Alex Pettyfer playing an uber-douchebag cotton farm overseer, and the digital effects and makeup that shave a few decades off lead Forest Whitaker in some scenes.

Whitaker plays Cecil Gaines, who served several different President as the White House butler, and the trailer suggests the film traces his entire life story, using it to frame the sweep of the civil rights movement. It’s a good story, but this trailer looks a lot like a parody that might show up on SNL. So we’ll see — maybe The Butler will be just as crazy as the rest of Daniels’ work. Read More »