Now that it has hit midnight, I want to wish all of you a very Happy New Year.
I hope you enjoyed your holiday celebrations and will have a great time today and throughout the first week of the New Year.
Trying to figure out what to watch tonight? Be it new episodes of the TV season, reairs of cable series or a movie, here are some suggestions:
The Princess Diaries movie on ABC Family
Finding Nemo (animated) movie on Starz
A League of Their Own movie on Sundance
NCIS on CBS (Reair)
Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor on BBC America (Reair)
Let It Snow movie on Hallmark (Reair)
Argo movie on Cinemax
Avatar movie on FX
Up (animated) movie on Disney
NCIS: Los Angeles on CBS (Reair)
Doctor Who: The Time of the Doctor on BBC America (Reair)
New Year’s Eve movie on Cinemax
Trading Christmas movie on Hallmark
Person of Interest on CBS (Reair)
The news in the world of entertainment has been pretty non-existent over Christmas week and this week won’t be much different.
The following are the top 10 box office movies for this past weekend courtesy of Box Office Mojo:
1. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – $29.9 million
2. Froze – $28.8 million
3. Anchorman 2 – The Legend Continues: $20.1 million
4. American Hustle – $19.6 million
5. The Wolf of Wall Street – $18.5 million
6. Saving Mr. Banks – $14 million
7. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty – $13 million
8. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire – $10.2 million
9. 47 Ronin – $9.9 million
10. Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas – $7.4 million
I won’t be posting another daily update until later in the week once the news markets start reporting on what is going on in the world of entertainment.
Have a wonderful and safe New Year’s Eve and a festive New Year’s Day!!
Back in October, I posted the fifth part of an ongoing series of articles about books being made into films. And the following list is the continuation of that series, but this time the list is comprised mainly of books that are set to be released in 2014 and are expected to hit the big screen at some point.
They appear in alphabetical order:
Annihilation – Based on the Jeff VanderMeer novel of the same name that will hit bookstands in early 2014, Paramount Pictures is working on the “Southern Reach” trilogy that chronicles an expedition into a mysterious sealed off zone known as Area X. The area is labeled an environmental disaster zone, but to all appearances it is a pristine wilderness. Over three decades a secret agency has sent in expeditions to discover the truth. Some have never returned, others have reported nothing out of the ordinary. As the area itself seems to be expanding, the novels follow the next investigative team sent into the zone. Said team is lead by a biologist looking for her husband who disappeared on an earlier expedition.
Children Of Paranoia – Based on the debut novel by Trevor Shane, CBS Films is adapting the story of a young assassin caught up in a global clandestine war that’s been raging for centuries. Everything changes when he falls in love with a woman who calls into question the world as he knows it. As he desperately fights to uncover the elusive truth behind the conflict, he begins to wonder which side he’s really on — good or evil.
Day One – Macmillan Films will develop the science fiction novel by Nate Kenyon for the big screen. The story is set in the near future, detailing a journalist’s attempt to escape New York to rescue his pregnant wife and young son during the chaotic first twenty-four hours of a sentient computer takeover.
Half Bad – 20th Century Fox has acquired the right to the debut novel by Sally Green, set to be released in March of 2014, that is a contemporary supernatural thriller that takes place in a world inhabited by covert witches; one faction is good and the other evil. They are divided by hatred and united by one thing only: fear of a boy descended from both sides.
Liv, Forever – Offspring Entertainment will be producing the film based on the Amy Talkington novel of the same name – which is to hit bookstores in March of 2014 – that is about Liv Bloom, who is murdered shortly after arriving at a prestigious New England boarding school. Her spirit remains and with the help of two boys–one of whom she’s fallen for and the other she reluctantly is trusting–she tries to solve her own murder.
Seasons – Based on the Joe Halderman sci-fi novella, which is part of the author’s 1985 short story collection called “Dealing In Futures” has been acquired by Sony Pictures. The story focuses on an anthropological expedition to a planet with sentient humanoids that goes horribly awry.
Sylo – The novel trilogy from D.J. MacHale has been set up at FOX 2000 and the Donners Company for release on the big screen. The series follow the inhabitants of a small island who find themselves cut off from the mainland by a mysterious government military force. A group of teens escape to the mainland, only to discover that the inhabitants of the United States have all but vanished, and that they were actually being kept safe. They try to discover the source of the invasion and fight back. The first book in the trilogy came out in July of 2013 with the second set to be published in March 2014 and the third book the fall of 2014.
The Bone Season – 20th Century Fox has acquired the first of a seven-installment sci-fi novel series by Samantha Shannon that takes place in a futuristic London society, where a 19-year-old girl works in the criminal underworld because she is a dreamwalker, a rare clairvoyant who can break into people’s minds and see what they are thinking. She is kidnapped and whisked away to Oxford, an otherworldly place where dreamwalkers are used as soldiers and where she is held captive by a warden with mysterious motives. The intention is for her to remain incarcerated her whole life, but she tries to find a way into her captor’s mind.
The Drowned World – Warner Bros. and Heyday Films have optioned the classic 1962 novel by J.G. Ballard that is set during 2145 and imagines a terrifying world in which solar radiation has melted the ice caps. Jungles have overrun continental Europe and London is for the most part left submerged under water. The protagonist is a biologist who lives on the 35th floor of a high-rise, where only two floors sit above the water line. He battles a savage environment and primordial creatures that prowl the undergrowth.
The Husband’s Secret – The book by Liane Moriarty has been acquired by CBS Films for the big screen. The novel follows three different women whose lives are plunged into crises after one of the women opens a Pandora’s Box that ties all three women together in ways no one could have suspected.
The Queen of the Tearling – Warner Bros. Pictures have acquired the rights to the upcoming fantasy trilogy by Erika Johansen – that does not come out in print until sometime in 2014 – with Harry Potter actress Emma Watson attached to star in a story set three centuries after an environmental catastrophe when a malevolent Red Queen holds considerable power.
The Right Hand – Universal Pictures has optioned the spy thriller novel by Derek Haas that focuses on Austin Clay, a spy whose work is so covert that the government won’t even admit he exists; and yet he executes necessary missions. In this fourth book by Haas that was released in November will find Clay tracking down a missing American operative, who was captured in the Russian countryside, which leads Clay into a conspiracy that involves a mole that has penetrated the top levels of U.S. government.
Tomorrow and Tomorrow – Sony Pictures is adapting the Thomas Sweterlitsch novel – set to hit bookshelves in the summer of 2014 – that is set a decade after the destruction of Pittsburgh, following one survivor who discovers a scandalous cover-up regarding the city’s demise as he goes about creating a digital reproduction of the area.
Trust Your Eyes – Warner Bros. will adapt the Linwood Barclay novel that is a Rear Window-style paranoid thriller about a map-obsessed schizophrenic savant who witnesses a murder in New York through a computer map program, and then convinces his brother to investigate. These impulses never end well, and the siblings find themselves smack in the center of a deadly political conspiracy.
To say the least, it will be interesting to see how these adaptations (and the books from the rest of this series) turn out; especially to learn if they will become box office smashes or disasters.
Do you have a book you would like to see made into a film? Or do any of the above strike your fancy? Or would you rather not see any of the books listed above be made into a film for whatever reason? Please share.
Here is a short list of the programming options to expect on TV this week:
On December 31, there will be a “catch-up” marathon of episodes of the new ABC Family drama The Fosters from 11 AM to 6 PM.
The new Lifetime Movie Network movie House of Secrets will debut on January 1 at 8 PM. Relieved to finally divorce her abusive, bullying husband Sam (Neil Jackson from Make It or Break It), Julie (Bianca Lawson from Teen Wolf) is determined to move forward with her life, despite having to live in the house Sam was building for them until she’s able to sell it. Her best friend and lawyer, Alison (Stephanie Jacobsen from Battlestar Galactica) convinces her to stay in the house for a while until she figures out what she is going to do. Having hired handyman Tyler (Brendan Fehr from Roswell and Bones) to work on some of the things that still need to be fixed in the new construction, Julie begins to realize that someone appears to be breaking into her house at will and watching her every move. She consults with seasoned Police Detective Morrison (Costas Mandylor from Picket Fences) who investigates the matter. The question is: could it be Tyler, whom she barely knows, or Sam, whom she knows all too well?
The eight-part limited series The Assets will debut on ABC on January 2 at 10 PM. This mini-series is based on the real life events of CIA counter-intelligence officer Sandy Grimes (Jodie Whittaker from the BBC mini Broadchurch). The year 1985 serves as the backdrop to the final showdown of the Cold War when Sandy and her partner Jeanne Vertefeuille (Harriet Walter from Babel) vowed to find the mole who would turn out to be the most notorious traitor in US History, Aldrich Ames (Paul Rhys from Borgia). Sandy is in a race against time to save the Soviet intelligence officers from being caught and killed. Living her own double life at home, this beautiful wife and mother vowed to stop at nothing until she uncovered the truth.
Elementary will be back from its holiday hiatus on CBS on January 2 at 10 PM.
On January 3, Grimm and Dracula will be back from its holiday hiatus on NBC at 10 PM.
Downton Abbey will be back for a new season on PBS starting on January 5 at 9 PM.
That same night, The Good Wife and The Mentalist will both be back on CBS from their holiday hiatus at 9 and 10 PM respectively.
Also on January 5, Revenge and Betrayal will both be back from their holiday hiatus on ABC at 9 and 10 PM respectively.
Mark your calendars!
Much like the Faces of 2013, there are always entertainers of note to be on the look-out for in the new year. With the help of some online research, here are my predictions for the faces of 2014 (in no particular order):
1. Alicia Vikander – The Swedish actress appeared in the Oscar-nominated Danish film A Royal Affair, then she appeared in the Kiera Knightley led film Anna Karenina and, most recently, she had a role in The Fifth Estate. In the new year, she will appear in the fantasy film loosely based on the Joseph Delaney’s novel series The Wardstone Chronicles as well as the Ewan McGregor-lead Son Of A Gun and the big screen remake of The Man From U.N.C.L.E.
2. Dylan O’Brien – He may already be a fan favorite with viewers of the MTV thriller Teen Wolf, where he plays Stiles Stilinski, the sarcastic best friend of lead character Scott McCall, but it will be his lead role of Thomas in the upcoming big screen adaptation of the 2009 novel The Maze Runner by author James Dashner that will put him on the map with more than just the fringe TV audience.
3. Jack Reynor – The American-born but Irish-raised actor had a small role in the made-for-TV Hallmark movie Chasing Leprechauns that starred Adrian Pasdar and the lead role in an Irish film called What Richard Did. He can currently be seen in the Vince Vaughn-led film Delivery Man, but it will be next year’s box-office blockbuster Transformers 4 that will put him firmly in the public eye. He will play Shane opposite Mark Wahlberg and Stanley Tucci.
4. Luke Arnold – Luke will appear in the much-anticipated Starz pirate adventure Black Sails where he will play legendary (Long) John Silver and he has the lead role of Michael Hutchence, the late lead singer of the band INXS, in the two-part Australian mini-series Never Tear Us Apart: The INXS Story. Prior to these projects, Luke had a small role in the World War II mini-series The Pacific, appeared in the Australian drama Winners & Losers and the independent film Broken Hill with Tim Hutton and Alexa Vega.
5. Brady Corbet – Brady got his first big break in the scintillating film Thirteen and later appeared in several episodes of season 5 of 24. In more recent years, he has appeared in the independent films Melancholia and Martha Marcy May Marlene, but it will be his appearance alongside The Hunger Games star Josh Hutcherson in the box office film Paradise Lost as well as his role in the box office film While We’re Young with Amanda Seyfried.
6. Lily James – Earlier this year, Lily appeared in season four of the international hit mini-series Downton Abbey as Crawley family cousin Rose, and prior to that she appeared in several episodes of Secret Diary of a Call Girl and had a role in the box office film Wrath of the Titans. But, it will be her lead role in the fairytale big screen film Cinderella that will be directed by Kenneth Branagh and will star Cate Blanchett as her nasty stepmother.
7. Marie Avgeropoulos – Marie has appeared in episodes of Supernatural, Harper’s Island, Fringe, Human Target and Eureka before landing the lead role in the Lifetime made-for-TV movie Fugitive at 17 and then starring in the short-lived CW series Cult. But, it will be her turn in the upcoming futuristic CW drama The 100 as well as her starring role alongside Twilight franchise star Taylor Lautner in the 2014 parkour film Tracers that will have people working very hard to pronounce her last name correctly.
7. Ed Oxenbould – Disney has cast young Australian newcomer Ed Oxenbould in the title role of Alexander in the big screen adaptation of the Judith Viorst book Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day that will follow Alexander through the mishaps of a terrible day for his family after he wishes they all would experience the same troubles he does. This youngster will star alongside Jennifer Garner, Steve Carrell, Megan Mullally and Jennifer Coolidge.
8. Brenton Thwaites – The Australian actor got his big break in the long-running Aussie soap opera Home And Away before landed the lead role in the Lifetime made-for-TV remake (of sorts) Blue Lagoon: The Awakening. But it will be his numerous 2014 film roles that will get him the most attention, including The Signal with Laurence Fishburne; Son of a Gun with Ewan McGregor, Maleficent with Angelina Jolie, Ride with Helen Hunt and The Giver with Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep.
9. Sam Heughan – Prior to landing the much-coveted role of Jamie Fraser in the Starz adaptation of the internationally popular Outlander series of books by Diana Gabaldon, Sam caught the eye of many Hallmark Channel viewers in the holiday film A Princess at Christmas alongside Merlin alum Katie McGrath. He also appeared in the PBS mini-series Any Human Heart, the British medical drama Doctors and the British min-series Island at War.
10. Ty Simpkins – Movie goers who saw Iron Man 3 will recognize young Ty Simpkins as Harley Keener, the young kid who helped Tony Stark out of a bind, but he also appeared in the 2010 horror flick Insidious as well as its 2013 follow-up. But, he will be seen in the long-in-the-works Jurassic Park sequel that will be released in the summer of 2015. Among this now 12 year old’s resume are the box office films War Of The Worlds, Revolutionary Road and Little Children.
11. Sophie Nelisse – This 13-year-old Canadian newcomer landed the lead role in the 2013 fall film release The Book Thief, playing Liesel Meminger, an adopted, illiterate girl who is fostered by the Hubermanns (played by Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson) when her father abandons her family, forcing her mother to give Liesel up for adoption. She learns to read thanks to the Hubermanns. Sophie was chosen over 1,000 other girls for this part and has only appeared in one other film: the 2011 Oscar-nominated Best Foreign Language film Monsieur Lazhar.
There will also be two groups of people (from film and TV) that will, assuredly, catch the attention of viewers in the new year, and they include:
1. Erin Krakow and Daniel Lissing – These two will play the lead roles of Elizabeth Thatcher and Jack Thornton in the new Hallmark Channel weekly series When Calls the Heart that is based on the Janette Oke book series. Daniel was, in fact, part of my faces of 2012 list because of his role in the short-lived ABC drama Last Resort while some TV viewers will recognize Erin from her recurring role on Army Wives.
2. The Cast of Divergent – The recognizable faces among the cast of this adaptation of the Veronica Roth YA novel includes Shailene Woodley (The Secret Life of the American Teenager), Theo James (Golden Boy), Kate Winslet (Titanic), Tony Goldwyn (Scandal), Ashley Judd (Missing), Maggie Q (Nikita), Miles Teller (Footloose), Zoe Kravitz (singer Lenny Kravitz’s daughter and X-men: First Class) and Mekhi Phifer (ER and Torchwood); but it will be the newer actors/actresses who will be starring alongside these bigger name stars who will be getting a lot of attention once the movie opens. They include Ben Lloyd-Hughes, Ben Lamb, Ansel Elgort, Christian Madsen, Amy Newbold and Justine Wachsberger.
Are there any actors or actresses who you think are the faces to watch in 2014? Please share.
TOMORROW: Closing Out 2013