Canceled Bantha Ride Was Planned for Disney’s Star Wars Land

Star Wars fans are ready to get in line for Disney’s upcoming theme park additions that are headed to Disneyland and Disney World, which will take fans to a galaxy far, far away. During D23 we found out that Star Wars land is going to officially be titled Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and that it is going to arrive in 2019. The park additions are going to feature two pretty epic sounding rides, but it turns out there was going to be a third ride that, for whatever reason, wound up not happening. The ride would have involved getting to ride on the back of a Bantha. Oh, what could have been.

The news comes courtesy of the Unofficial Guide’s Disney Dish Podcast. According to Jim Hill while speaking on the episode, a third ride was going to be included at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge that would have featured the massive elephant-esque creatures that first appeared in Star Wars: A New Hope and were employed by the Tusken Raiders as a means of transportation. Based on Jim Hill’s description of the ride, it sounds like visitors to the park would have been able to use them in a similar capacity.

According to Hill, the Bantha ride would have been a callback to the Pack Mules Through Nature’s Wonderland that closed at Disneyland years ago. Disney’s Imagineers were going to employ a trackless ride system inside of massive animatronic Bantha vehicles. Sounds cool already, right? Visitors would have to board the Banthas from an elevated platform because of their massive size. Guests would then sit in a cage fitting 12-16 people at a time that was positioned on the back of the Bantha. Local alien salesman would have been the ones selling this attraction to “tourists,” which is a fun touch. The Bantha ride would take passengers from the heart of the city, out into the hills overlooking a Resistance base and then back toward the First Order occupation and eventually back to the center of the city.

Even without this Bantha ride, there will be plenty of Star Wars attractions to enjoy at the park. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will feature food and shops in addition to the cool hands-on experiences that edged out the Bantha ride. Visitors will be able to “take the controls of the Millennium Falcon on a customized mission” and partake in “an epic Star Wars adventure that puts guests in the middle of a climatic battle between the First Order and the Resistance.” The second ride is going to make it feel like you are on a Star Destroyer inside of a hanger bay, similar to Finn and Poe’s adventure in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. All of this is going to be taking place on a planet in the galaxy’s Outer Rim, which is largely uncharted.

There is no specific opening date yet for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, but it is going to open in 2019. And it most definitely will not have this awesome sounding Bantha ride. But hey, no use crying over spilled blue milk, right?


Zack Snyder Has Minimized Role in Future DC Movie Slate?

After the shocking news in May that Zack Snyder is stepping down from Justice League after suffering a family tragedy, it seems that the director and his producing partner/wife Deborah Snyder may not have as much creative input when they return. A new report claims that, moving forward with the DCEU Films, Zack and Deborah Snyder will not be actively involved in the creative decision-making within the DCEU. The report was vehemently denied by Toby Emmerich, Warner Bros. Pictures Group president and chief content officer, who had this to say in a brief statement.

“The Snyders remain an important part of the Warner Bros. family and are actively involved in several upcoming DC pictures, including their continued creative input on Justice League. We are excited about our partnership and look forward to our continued collaboration.”

Mashable’s sources also confirm that Zack Snyder will get directing credit on Justice League, while his wife Deborah Snyder will get producing credit as well, which backs up a report from yesterday that claimed Joss Whedon, who stepped in to take over the production after Zack Snyder left to be with his family, will not get directing credit. That report did state that it’s possible he could get a screenwriting credit though, since he has been tasked with punching up the script and improving the dialogue. Still, when it comes to future films, Zack Snyder and Deborah Snyder will likely be involved as producers, although DC Films is trying to move forward in another direction, with DC Films president Geoff Johns.

While Zack Snyder has overseen the formation of the DCEU to date, dating back to Man of Steel in 2013, insiders claim that the studio wants to break away from his dark, brooding style, with the next batch of films expected to have a more hopeful outlook, much like this year’s smash hit Wonder Woman, which Zack Snyder did produce. Now, Geoff Johns will essentially take the reins of the DCEU, which doesn’t come as too big a surprise since, last May, Geoff Johns was named the head of DC Films, Warner Bros.’ dedicated division for the DCEU, which he will run alongside Warner Bros.’ executive vice president Jon Berg. Joss Whedon is said to be a major part of DC’s creative team moving into the future.

Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins, The Batman director Matt Reeves and Aquaman director James Wan are also said to play larger creative roles in the DCEU as a whole, but that might not be the case with Suicide Squad David Ayer, whose involvement in Gotham City Sirens is now reportedly in question, although his rep strongly denied it. Gotham City Sirens wasn’t part of the DCEU sizzle reel shown at Comic-Con, even though it’s still early in the development process, although sources claim Ayer won’t be part of the DCEU’s over-arching plans. As for what’s next for Zack Snyder, this report also claims that he will stay put at Warner Bros., instead focusing on other projects for the studio that don’t involve the DCEU, although no specific projects were listed.


Why Captain Marvel Takes Place in the 90s According to Kevin Feige

One of the biggest revelations from Marvel’s Comic-Con 2017 presentation was that the highly-anticipated Captain Marvel adaptation will in fact be set in the 1990s, and that the villains will be the Skrulls. This came as quite a surprise to most Marvel fans, since the 1990s haven’t really been explored in the MCU, and it seems that’s one of the main reasons why the setting was chose. After the Marvel panel at SDCC, Kevin Feige confirmed they had the idea to set this movie in the 1990s fairly early on, but there isn’t much else he could say.

“Yes. Yeah. Early, early days. Well, there is an unexplored period of the Marvel Cinematic Universe that we wanted to showcase, and… almost anything else is a spoiler, other than to say, the 90s would be a fun period to make a superhero movie in. I graduated high school in 1991, and the fact that I’m making a period piece that takes place in that time, it’s unbelievable.”

The Skrulls were unveiled in new concept art that was shown to the Hall H crowd, which also offered a glimpse at what Oscar-winning actress Brie Larson will look like as Carol Danvers. It was also confirmed at the panel that Samuel L. Jackson will finally return to the MCU in Captain Marvel as Nick Fury, but, since this is set in the 1990s, he will be “de-aged,” while sporting two eyes. Ever since Nick Fury was introduced in the Iron Man post-credit scene way back in 2008, he has been seen sporting an eye-patch, but now we’ll finally get to see what Nick Fury looks like without his eyepatch. Unfortunately, Kevin Feige refused to shed more light on Captain Marvel in his interview with MTV.

It’s possible that this movie may show how Nick Fury actually lost his eye in the MCU, which will likely be quite different than the comic book version, since Nick Fury’s left eye was first damaged during a grenade blast in World War II, with the eye eventually getting worse over time, even while his aging has slowed due to his Infinity Serum intake. It has never been established in the MCU how Nick Fury lost his eye, although he does tell Steve Rogers in Captain America: The Winter Soldier that, “The last time he trusted someone, he lost an eye.” Who that someone is, and how his eye was lost, have not yet been revealed in the MCU, but it seems that may be happening in Captain Marvel.

Aside from Brie Larson as Carol Danvers, no other cast members have been revealed yet, and with a March 8, 2019 release date in place, it’s likely that production won’t begin until sometime next year. It has been confirmed that this movie will be a Captain Marvel origin story, with Nicole Perlman (Guardians of the Galaxy) and Meg LeFauve (Inside Out) writing the script for directors Anna Fleck and Ryan Boden. Hopefully more will be revealed about Captain Marvel soon as we inch closer and closer to the March 2019 release date.


Blac Chyna May Have Returned Cars To Rob Kardashian, But She Already Has A New Ride

Blac Chyna is getting back in the driver’s seat after Rob Kardashian big social media meltdown.


Check Out Mary-Kate And Ashley Olsen Appearing In Vintage Fashion For Friend’s Wedding

If anyone could pull off avant-garde vintage fashion at a wedding without upstaging the bride, it would be Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen.


Hilary Zaitz Michael Named WME Lit Packaging Agent

Hilary Zaitz Michael has joined WME as an agent in the Literary Packaging department. Michael joins WME from Michael London’s Groundswell Productions, where she served as Vice President. She worked on developing and packaging material that included Chance, The Magicians, Smilf, as well as the UCP/SyFy series Raven Cyle and The Wangs Vs. The World at Hulu. Before that she worked in development for Alan Ball’s Your Face Goes Here Entertainment and at Anonymous Content. She began as a financial analyst in New York for Morgan Stanley.


Epix Sets Fall Premiere Dates For ‘Berlin Station’ & ‘Graves’ Season 2; ‘Danica’ Docu – TCA

Epix has slotted Season 2 premiere dates for its original drama series Berlin Station and comedy Graves, along with the debut of original documentary film Danica.

Berlin Station Season 2 will bow Sunday, October 15 at 9 PM; Graves will debut Sunday, October 22 at 10 PM and Danica, directed by Hannah Storm, will air Wednesday, November 8 at 8 PM.


Season two of Berlin Station opens in the thick of a New World Order that has taken root and is steadily deepening. Richard Armitage, Rhys Ifans, Richard Jenkins, Leland Orser and Michelle Forbes star. New to the cast this season are Ashley Judd and Keke Palmer. The series is created and executive produced by Olen Steinhauer. Bradford Winters serves as executive producer and showrunner.


The second season of Graves picks up with former President Richard Graves (Nick Nolte) turning inward in search of the man he used to be before he was President. Heléne Yorke, Sela Ward, Chris Lowell, Skylar Astin and Callie Hernandez also star. Produced by Lionsgate in association with Kingsgate Films, Josh Michael Stern is the creator/showrunner, Academy Award winner Greg Shapiro and Rebecca Kirshner are executive producers, Abby Gewanter is supervising producer, and Emmy-winning Bill Hill and Jack Moore are producers.

Danica, a documentary film about racing superstar Danica Patrick, is directed by award-winning journalist and sports broadcasting pioneer Hannah Storm. The film is produced by Epix in conjunction with Brainstormin Productions.


‘America Divided’ Renewed For Season 2 By Epix – TCA

Epix has ordered a four-episode second season of its award-winning documentary series America Divided for premiere in 2018. The network announced the renewal during the show’s session Tuesday at TCA.

Season 1 of America Divided tacked critical societal issues from the criminal justice system and education, to housing and heroin, to threats facing American democracy itself. Season 2 will again go cross-country to investigate the forces driving us apart and introduce viewers to ordinary people engaged in extraordinary efforts to overcome our country’s racial, class, gender, religious and partisan divides. Norman Lear and Jesse Williams return as executive producers and correspondents.

Divided Films and RadicalMedia will return to produce Season 2. Series creators Solly Granatstein, Lucian Read and Richard Rowley will return for Divided Films, as will Jon Kamen and Justin Wilkes for RadicalMedia. Along with Lear, Brent Miller of Act III Productions will return as an executive producer.


Atomic Blonde Review: Charlize Theron Throws a Cold War Dance Party

Cold War espionage thriller meets 80s new wave dance party in Atomic Blonde. Adapted from the graphic novel The Coldest City, the film is a violent and ultra-stylized journey into convolution. Stuntman turned director David Leitch (John Wick) has a good eye for his lead actress and bone-crunching fight scenes. The missing part of the equation was turning all of that flash into a more coherent plot. Atomic Blonde gets lost in its bombastic approach, but certainly had my feet tapping to the retro soundtrack.

A platinum coiffed Charlize Theron stars as MI6 spy Lorraine Broughton. On the eve of the Berlin Wall collapse in 1989, she’s sent into West Germany on a critical mission. One of their agents has been murdered. A list of deep cover operatives has been stolen from him. Broughton must recover the list before it gets out into the open. She’s assigned to work with David Percival (James McAvoy), the maverick chief of Berlin station. Broughton stirs up a hornet’s nest of intrigue and duplicity. Every side fights for their own agenda as communism comes crashing down around them.

Atomic Blonde is the ultimate fix for the Charlize Theron addict. The stunning actress is front and center throughout. Broughton is a femme fatal with deadly fighting skills. She doles out punishment with ruthless efficiency, but also pays the price for her ass-kicking ways. Theron is bloodied and bruised as much as she is sleek and sexy. She chugs Stoli on the rocks, no shaken martinis here. What she does share with Bond is his love for beautiful women. Broughton has a lesbian sex scene that will melt the butter on your popcorn. This character is the physical opposite of Furiosa in Mad Max: Fury Road, but just as lethal.

Atomic Blonde gets muddled by its labyrinthine plot. There’s enough double crossing here to make your head spin. The mystery elements are not well handled. I think that David Leitch spent too much time on style points. He certainly captures an energetic look and feel, but the actual story gets lost in the weeds. It becomes secondary to the spectacle. Now that would work if the spectacle didn’t depend on an intricate story, but it does. Atomic Blonde is aiming for a certain level of complexity. It just never finds the balance between spy thriller and action film.

The soundtrack is critical to the film’s ambience. Atomic Blonde plays like a two hour music video of eighties new wave and industrial hits. There are pop classics like “99 Luftballons” and “Der Kommissar” mixed in with Depeche Mode’s “Little Fifteen” and Ministry’s “Burning Inside”. Broughton could open a pretty smashing dance club if the spy thing doesn’t work out for her. That’s a bit cheeky, but the music is a huge part of the film. It keeps the beat, literally, while the film bumbles around with the convoluted plot.

From Focus Features, Atomic Blonde is loaded with eye and ear candy. Charlize Theron sells the sexy secret agent with ease. She kicks ass and looks fabulous doing it. I think most audiences will go for the pounding eighties music. Atomic Blonde doesn’t quite work as a spy film, but the dazzling elements are more than enough entertainment value.


‘Brad’s Status’ Trailer: Mike White & Ben Stiller Plumb The Depths Of Dads

Amazon has released a trailer for Brad’s Status, the Mike White movie starring Ben Stiller that will hit theaters September 15 via Annapurna. The comedic drama was co-financed by Amazon with Sidney Kimmel Entertainment.

Stiller stars a Brad, who despite a good career and happy family is obsessed with the better fortunes of his old friends from school. While escorting his son Troy (Austin Abrams) on an East Coast tour of colleges, Brad is forced to confront his friends and his feelings of failure, which manifest during the college trip where it’s his son, not him, that’s keeping it together.

“Your friends sound like d*cks,” Troy tells his dad. “Everyone only thinks about themselves. The only person that’s thinking about you is me.”

Michael Sheen, Luke Wilson, Jemaine Clement and Jenna Fischer co-star.

White, who penned School Of Rock and most recently wrote and directed the Sundance pic Beatriz At Dinner, also wrote and directed this one, which he produced with David Bernad, Plan B and SKE.

Check out the trailer above.

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