Palm Springs duo Andy Samberg and writer Andy Siara are teaming with producers Ben Stiller and Noah Hawley for an untitled sci-fi comedy-drama over at Apple Studios. The idea for the project comes from Raphael Bob-Waksberg, creator of BoJack Horseman, but we have no plot details at the moment. Siara, who wrote Palm Springs, is handling the script, while Samberg, Hawley, and Bob-Waksberg will produce with Ben Stiller.
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Throw a virtual rock, and you’ll find someone acknowledging that 2020 has been a particularly awful year. From the extreme intensity of the neverending American presidential election to the devastating COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 has been a roller-coaster whose riders are people who never agreed to ride a roller-coaster to begin with. For anyone with enough streaming options over the last year, it’s been easier than ever to binge plenty of dark dramas, epic films, and more. But because 2020 has been so miserable, you may have wanted a pop-culture option that would serve as a balm against the horrors. You may wish for an escape from the world.
May I introduce you to Ted Lasso?
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(Welcome to The Quarantine Stream, a new series where the /Film team shares what they’ve been watching while social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.)
The Series: Boys State
Where You Can Stream It: Apple TV+
The Pitch: In Boys State, a thousand Texas high school seniors gather for an elaborate mock exercise: building their own state government. The film closely tracks the escalating tensions that arise within a particularly riveting gubernatorial race, training their cameras on unforgettable teenagers like Ben, a Reagan-loving arch-conservative who brims with confidence despite personal setbacks, and Steven, a progressive-minded child of Mexican immigrants who stands by his convictions amidst the sea of red. In the process, they have created a complex portrait of contemporary American masculinity, as well as a microcosm of our often dispiriting national political divisions that nevertheless manages to plant seeds of hope.
Why It’s Essential Viewing: In addition to the last four years of American governance being an absolute clusterfuck, the year 2020 was especially wrought with political turmoil due to the 2020 election cycle. Though you’re probably tired of all the bipartisan bickering mudslinging, allow me to implore you to endure a little bit more of it by digging into this documentary that illustrates how the state of our government and political system has an important influence on young minds. And while much of the nightmare that has unfolded over four years has bolstered some of the worst tendencies in political discourse, there’s always hope for the future. Read More »
After slowly dropping from a great height and rotating in the air a few times, the Tetris movie has fit snugly into place at Apple. To be clear: this isn’t a film based on the game itself. Rather, it’s about the creation of the game and its licensing around the world. Taron Egerton is set to star as Henk Rogers, the Dutch video game designer who was the first to secure the rights to distribute Tetris on consoles.
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Killers of the Flower Moon, a film that will reunite Martin Scorsese with both Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio, was supposed to start filming in March of this year. That didn’t happen, thanks to the coronavirus. And it seems that screenwriter Eric Roth has used that delay to work on rewrites for the film – rewrites requested (or perhaps we should say “demanded”) by DiCaprio. It was previously rumored that the film ran into behind-the-scenes issues when DiCaprio decided he wanted to play a different character. Now it looks like Roth is confirming those rumors.
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Apple TV is expanding to the gaming community. The Apple TV app is set to debut on Xbox consoles this month, on the heels of the streaming app’s launch on Sony’s PS4 and PS5 consoles and just in time for the Xbox Series X and Series S launch. Read More »
Mexican cinematographer Emmanuel “Chivo” Lubezki has been relatively quiet since his stunning achievement of winning three Oscars in a row in 2013, 2014, and 2015. But now he’s back with a brief short film which hypes Apple’s newly announced iPhone 12 Pro, the first device that allows a person to “capture, edit, watch, and share Dolby Vision video.” Check out Lubezki’s iPhone 12 commercial below, featuring more of the type of gorgeous imagery for which he’s earned acclaim throughout his career. Read More »
Depending on who you talk to, hand-drawn animation is either inching toward being an endangered art form in Hollywood, or it’s already reached that point. Major film studios have generally leaned toward CG animation over the past twenty years, leaving streamers like Netflix and to fund the occasional hand-drawn movie and keep the art form on life support.
Now Apple is getting in on the animated action with Wolfwalkers, a gorgeous new movie from two-time Oscar nominated director Tomm Moore (Song of the Sea, The Secret of Kells) and director Ross Stewart (The Secret of Kells). It’s about a young girl who’s raised to hunt and eradicate wolves – but her beliefs are challenged when she meets a tribal girl who has the ability to transform into a wolf. Check out the trailer below. Read More »
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AppleTV+ has tried free trials. It’s tried building out its back catalog with beloved classic movies and shows. It’s bought a big-budget Martin Scorsese film. So what else can the new streaming platform do to attract and retain new subscribers? It will reportedly introduce us to an augmented reality — that is, augmented reality content that will act as a companion to the AppleTV+ streaming service.
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Apple keeps signing big names as they build their streaming empire. The latest: Idris Elba, who has signed on to produce and star in a romantic spy thriller for the streamer, with Simon Kinberg also producing. The film will be set in Africa, but beyond that, there’s very little info. Kinberg wrote and produced Mr. & Mrs. Smith, so he has a history with romantic spy thrillers starring attractive people.
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