Director J.J. Abrams sat down with Conan O’Brien this week and during their interview Abrams–against the studios wishes–shared with the audience a clip from the upcoming Star Trek sequel. And it has a name now, by the way; it’s Star Trek Into Darkness.
Get this: the clip is only three frames long. After you watch it unfold at the speed of light in the video above, jump after the break for a better look at what you think you’ve seen. Conan correctly predicted that the Internet would freeze frame the very first look at Zachary Quinto as Spock in a volcano. There really isn’t much that can be gleaned from this, but at least it’s something.
Star Trek Into Darkness releases May 17, 2013. (Click here for more…)
They’ve made it this far. South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker have completed (or are probably still in the process of completing) the 224th episode of the crude animated series to air on Comedy Central. The episode to kick off season 16 is titled “Reverse Cowgirl” and the log line goes something like this:
After a South Park citizen meets with an unfortunate accident, the TSA steps in to prevent it from happening again… One of the boys had been told time and time again about leaving the toilet seat up after he goes to the bathroom, but he didnt listen. His actions have consequences and ultimately result in an unimaginable catastrophe.
Embedded above is a thirty second preview featuring the one and only Randy Marsh. Might this be a Randy-centric episode? If so, it’s got classic South Park written all over it.
South Park premieres tonight (3/14) at 10PM on Comedy Central. The show will continue to air Wednesday nights at 10 for an additional six weeks, and then take its usual extended hiatus and return with the second half of the season in October.
Tonight FOX is airing the pilot episode of Tim Kring’s new drama Touch ahead of the show’s official March 19 premiere. Kiefer Sutherland (24) stars as Martin Bohm, a man who is estranged from his autistic son. In Touch, the Heroes creator tells an emotionally and spiritually uplifting story about a mute child who communicates with numbers and discovers patterns that connect seemingly unrelated events around the world. Though the show will take place in a myriad of locales and touch the lives of strangers, at the heart of this series is the relationship between Sutherland’s character and his gifted son. Watch the extended trailer once and you should immediately start anticipating tonight’s one-hour preview event. And then the wait until March will become all the more unbearable.
Touch airs tonight at 9PM on FOX.
Update: The ratings are in and it turns out many people were touched by Sutherland’s new show last night. The Touch pilot attracted 11.9 million viewers and scored a 3.9/10 among adults 18-49. This makes it the second highest rated new drama series this TV season. (ABC’s Once Upon a Time premiere still remains the highest rated drama series this season so far: 12.8 million viewers, 4.0 demo rating among the 18-49 crowd.) This bodes extremely well for Kring’s latest. People are positively buzzing about the show, and anticipation is high for the spring premiere. Did Touch grip you last night? Spill your thoughts in the comments section below.
The new Muppets movie is almost here! To elevate your sheer excitement click play above and take in seven minutes of the original soundtrack. You’ll hear vocals from all of your favorite Henson characters as well as stars Jason Segal, Amy Adams, Chris Cooper, and more. Preorder the soundtrack at iTunes today. It releases tomorrow, November 20. And the movie comes out this Wednesday, November 23.
That read that right, folks. NBC is rebooting Fear Factor, the reality game show that originally ran from 2001-2006. Host Joe Rogen is back and so are the disgusting and adrenaline pumping tasks the human competitors must face. Paul Telegdy, NBC’s president of alternative and late night TV, marked the occasion with these words: “We have taken the groundbreaking Fear Factor franchise that many fans remember fondly and have ramped it up to make it even more challenging and competitive than ever before. Once again, the contestants will have to face their ultimate fears to prevail — and the tension and drama of that process will make for some riveting television.” Watch a 2-minute preview of what’s in store for the new season above. Fear Factor returns December 12 and will air Mondays at the 8PM-10PM timeslot.
Watch as director Martin Scorsese previews Hugo, his very first family film that is shot in 3D. It stars youngsters Asa Butterfield and Chloë Moretz, with Ben Kingsley, Jude Law, and Sacha Baron Cohen. It releases November 23, 2011.
The man known ’round the world as James “Sawyer” Ford is about to make a visit to Greendale in the upcoming paintball episode of Community. Lost actor Josh Holloway plays Black Rider, “a mysterious stranger who’s thrown a wrench into the paintball game,” as described by show creator Dan Harmon. NBC plans to air the Community finale in two parts. The next paintball epic will begin May 5 in the episode titled “A Fist Full of Paintballs,” and Holloway will make his mark here. Part 2 airs May 12.
In an interview with EW, Harmon details how the two-parter will work. “It’s designed to exist both as one story but also two separate episodes. [The first] one has a Sergio Leone Western motif, so there’s more emphasis on tension, scarcity of ammo, and who might draw on who. But the second one erupts — the Western motif falls away and an out-and-out war happens. There’s a kind of an epic, wartime, band-of-rebels-against-a-larger-force Star Wars feel to the second one … If we only did the Western one, there might have been some people who said, ‘Oh it’s great, but it’s not ‘Modern Warfare.’ And then there’s other people who, if we had only done ‘Modern Warfare,’ would say, ‘Eh, same thing again.’”
Watch the brief but titillating preview featuring Black Rider’s first interaction with Alison Brie’s Annie. Tune into Community Thursday nights at 8PM on NBC.
NBC’s The Sing-Off is doing so well in the ratings that the network’s decided to expand the December 20 season finale by a half-hour. But here’s the really exciting news: The Peacock plans to use the Sing-Off finale as a platform to promote the new midseason sitcom Perfect Couples. Following the finale a “preview episode” of Perfect Couples will air from 10:30PM to 11PM; the network makes it clear that this special preview is not the pilot. That will be saved for the show’s true premiere date set for Thursday, January 20 at 8:30PM. It will follow Community in the Thursday night comedy block, which was recently extended to include six shows in total.
Perfect Couples follows three couples at various stages of their relationships. Here’s a quick synopsis: Dave (Kyle Howard, My Boys) and Julia (Christine Woods, FlashForward) are the relatable, normal couple, but Julia’s hope of remaining the cool, low-maintenance chick is tested by Dave’s attempts to keep both his wife and his needy best friend Vance (Dave Walton, NBC’s 100 Questions) equally happy. Vance, along with the neurotic Amy (Mary Elizabeth Ellis, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia), are the high-passion, high-drama couple who bring out the best and worst in each other. The third duo features Rex (Hayes MacArthur, She’s Out of My League), a reformed party guy, and his wife, Leigh (Olivia Munn, Attack of the Show), who considers herself as the group’s mother hen. Believing that they are relationship experts, Rex and Leigh have attended every class and seminar on relationships — and regard themselves as the ‘perfect couple.’”
Update: Well there’s been a change in scheduling here, so take note: The Sing-Off finale will remain two hours in length, and the Perfect Couples preview episode will air at 10PM followed by a repeat of The Office.
Looks like Kanye West is readying his next music video. The followup to the “Power” painting will be a haunting tribute to the “Monster” track on West’s incredible My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. This 40 second preview of the video was originally obtained by Hip Hop Connection but was recently taken down from the site. I managed to find another copy hanging out in YouTube, so make sure you check it out before it gets squashed again. In it you’ll see West interacting with dead girls, Jay-Z rapping amidst dead girls hanging from the ceiling like chandeliers, and Nicki Minaj spitting her sick verse erotically crawling on the floor. Rick Ross also plays a part in the video, and you can click here to see a brief behind-the-scenes glimpse into his on-screen duties. With all of this leaking at once, I’d like to think the final, official version is ready for a release soon.
Community series creator Dan Harmon spilled the beans that this season’s Christmas episode is going to be “wall-to-wall stop motion animat[ed]” back in late September. And here’s proof that the man was not lying! In the episode preview above you can clearly see that the entire Greendale gang has received the Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer treatment just in time for the Christmas special. According to Harmon the episode will deal with “Abed’s search for the meaning of Christmas.” The episode “looks into what makes him different from other people.” He says, “Everything that happens on this episode is part of the actual show and will change the characters, and yet there are wonderful, fantastic holiday things happening in it.” Can’t wait! Thus far Community‘s holiday episodes have been the most memorable; there’s no denying that “Epidemiology” (the Halloween zombie episode) kicked major ass. The stop motion Christmas ep will surely impress. Speaking of which… be sure to look in the gallery below to get a closer look at Shirley, Jeff, Britta, Abed, and the rest of the gang in animated form. Senior student Chang is an Asian snowman!
Community airs Thursday nights at 8PM on NBC. “Abed’s Uncontrollable Christmas” is penned in for a 12/9 air date.
Update: Head over to EW if you want to see some more Community stop motion goodness. In addition to some sneak peeks you’ll also find a couple behind-the-scenes videos that show how much effort goes into making a claymation special. It’s intensive work!
On October 28 Tron fans were treated to an early glimpse into the upcoming Disney movie Tron: Legacy. Across the world select IMAX 3D theatres hosted TRON NIGHT, “a free exclusive 20+ minute sneak peek” of the movie. I attended the special screening tonight, and here is a summary interjected with my impressions.
When I got to the theatre about an hour before the 7PM screening, there was already a small line forming. While movie-goers waited on line we were handed Tron swag including promotional material about the size of a postcard; one is an image of Daft Punk in costume promoting the upcoming Tron soundtrack and the other is an image of a Tron program character and on the other side a promotion for an Asus laptop (they sponsored the event). We were also required to check-in and wear a bracelet with the TRON NIGHT logo on it. Don’t think I’ll be taking that off any time soon. Before entering the IMAX 3D theatre, we were forced to leave our cell phones behind (for obvious reasons) and a security officer quickly scanned our bodies with a wand to make sure we weren’t harboring any electronic devices. Crazy, right? After receiving a pair of 3D glasses, we entered the theatre and took our (perfect!) seats.
A minute before showtime the event coordinator welcomed everyone to the screening and implored us to share our excitement for Tron: Legacy with friends and on the Internet (what do you think I’m doing right now?). The lights went dim and we were presented with a brief message from the movie’s director Joseph Kosinski. In a typed note, he told us that the scenes we were about to see take place in the first half of the movie and that it is OK to wear the 3D glasses during the 2D scenes. Just in case you are not aware of this, the “real world” scenes were shot in 2D and the “Tron universe” scenes are in 3D. After this brief introduction the sneak preview started right away (that’s right–no trailers). The 23 minutes of (not entirely) never-before-seen footage was split into five scenes. I will detail them as best I can below.
Scene 20: Sam’s Garage- This first scene was set in the “real world”, so it was shot in 2D but still looked brilliant with 3D glasses on (as the director promised it would). The scene takes place in Sam Flynn’s (Garrett Hedlund) garage. You’d recognize this scene from the trailer. In it Sam and Alan Bradley (Bruce Boxleitner) engage in conversation and Alan tells Sam that he received a page from Flynn’s arcade. Alan: “These are the keys to the arcade. I haven’t gone over there yet. I thought you should be the one.” Sam: “Alan, you’re acting like I’m gonna find him sitting there working. Just, ‘hey kiddo, lost track of time.’” These lines are in the trailer, you’re starting to remember now.
This next part is included in Scene 20, but it sure felt like an entirely new setting as it took place elsewhere. It cuts from Sam’s garage to the vacant and dusty Flynn’s Arcade. Sam decided to take Alan’s advice and check out where the mysterious page could have come from. Sam finds the circuit breaker and turns on the building’s power. All of the arcade games light up and make so much noise. On top of this Jouney’s “Separate Ways” plays loudly from the arcade’s sound system. Sam looks at the dusty old Tron arcade machine and decides to play a round. He inserts a quarter but it falls to the ground. He is curious about a precise crack in the floor and manages to move the Tron machine to reveal a hidden passageway behind it. Inside he finds a door with a key occupied in its hole and he enters a room. It appears to be his father’s secret office where he stored a certain computer. Sam looks around the room and we are shown images of a young Sam with his now-missing father and a blueprint labeled “Grid.” Sam sits down at the touchscreen computer desk, wipes a thick layer of dust off it, and it turns on from standby mode. He begins to type away but has no luck accessing the system since he doesn’t know the login information. “Let’s try the back door,” he whispers to himself. All of a sudden, a large laser projector-like machine turns on behind him. It emits this whirring sound and suddenly a bright white light flashes and the scene ends. (Click here for more…)
YouTuber x313xkillax somehow managed to get his hands on a protoype model of the HP Slate. As you can see in the video embedded above the Slate has a myriad of ports and switches around the edges (including one that reveals an on-screen keyboard) and it boots fairly quickly into a full-fledged copy of Windows 7. IE8 seems to run Flash content without hiccup (advantage HP, iPad). Since Windows 7 isn’t all that optimized for touchscreen implementation I am anticipating a future HP tablet running multitouch-friendly WebOS. HP bought Palm so they can do that, you know.
Want more deets on the Slate? A second video surfaced that previews the tablet in greater detail. The back of the product box lists the following specs: 1.86GHz Intel Atom Z540 with GMA500 and Broadcom Crystal HD Enhanced Video accelerator, 8.9-inch WSVGA screen, 2GB DDR2 RAM, about 60GB storage capacity, Windows 7 Home Premium, 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth, SD card reader, 2-Cell 30WHr Lithium-ion Polymer battery. There are also back and front-facing cameras. Apparently the Slate will ship with a dock that comes complete with a kickstand, two USB ports, HDMI out, and a headphone jack.
Update: Both videos have been “removed by the user” due to obvious reasons. However I was able to find another copy of the original preview video and it’s embedded above; the more extensive preview is nowhere to be found, unfortunately.
It’s mid-September, my favorite time of year. Brand new television programming begins and old favorites return. I’m going to run through the new network and cable shows that I’m most anticipating, let you know which returning shows you should be watching, and I’ll hypothesize about which new shows are likely to get the axe. Not so interested in my opinions? Simply click here to view the 2010 fall schedule for the big four networks (including synopses, cast/creator info, and trailers) and decide what to watch on your own terms.
CBS: There’s a reason why CBS is the most watched network–they mostly air procedural crime dramas that do not force viewers to tune in every week. Take, for example, the CSI franchise (which now includes CSI, CSI: NY & CSI: Miami) and the NCIS franchise (NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles). Sprinkle in some fantastic comedies like The Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother plus popular reality shows like Survivor and The Amazing Race, and Undercover Boss and you’ve got a worthy lineup that does not require weekly viewing. Though I am not not the biggest fan of the procedurals, The Mentalist does a fine job of drawing me in when I happen to channel surf to the network. Also, I’ve only heard good things about The Good Wife, so you might want to give that a try as well.
Of the five new shows premiering this fall on CBS, there’s only one that I’m fully interested in: Hawaii Five-O. Again, crime procedurals are usually not my cup of tea but there’s no denying how action-packed and fun this 1960s reboot looks. (The show originally aired on CBS for 12 seasons from 1968-1980.) Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman (Fringe) serve as executive producers and stars Alex O’Loughlin (Three Rivers), Scott Caan (Entourage), Daniel Dae Kim (Lost), and the beautiful Grace Park (Battlestar Galactica: The Plan) will work together to take down the villains. Except tons of explosions, violent action scenes, and quick, witty banter from Caan. It only helps that the backdrop to all of this is Oahu! Premieres Monday, September 20 at 10PM.
Getting the axe? $#*@ My Dad Says.
Kanye West braces for new album by previewing new songs at Facebook, joining Twitter [Update: Rolling Stone visit]
After spending some time out of the limelight, Kanye West has returned to entertain us with his slick, emotionally-driven raps and different side of his thumping ego. On Wednesday Kanye visited Facebook HQ in Palo Alto, California to preview four tracks from his upcoming album. He donned a fresh suit and rapped a capella atop a table inside a fluorescently lit conference room in front of Facebook employees. He starts with a “fun rap”, that’s the one embedded above. It rocks. “Kill the hypocrisy/This is an aristocracy..I’m Socrates/But my skin more chocolatey.” The next rap is rather short; it may just be a freestyle, but it’s got a sick line in it: “Lost in this plastic life/Let’s break out of this fake-ass party, turn this into a classic night.” The next song likely titled “Chain Heavy” is dipped in politics and contains this humorous line: “They try to tell me that aliens built the pyramids/I swear life’s on bitch on a period”; it concludes with my favorite line I’ve heard this far: “This is the making of a masterpiece/So we broke out the chains and told our master, ‘Peace’.” The fourth song is called “Mama’s Boyfriend” and it’s an extremely emotional track about Kanye’s late mother Donde West. In it he journeys back to the days when his divorced mother started dating other men. “I’m my mama’s boyfriend/I’m her little husband…Keep your hands off my mama” he screams. Apprently this track took him 33 years to write and it clearly means a lot to him. ‘Ye drops so many uses of the n-word in this track, but he says, “I’m allowed to use it.”
Later that day he posted this message targeted to the Facebook employees: “Many times in life I’ve had to deal with moments of doubt. And as it’s been a minute since I’ve performed any fresh material in front of an audience, this could’ve been one of those moments… but it wasn’t. Your energy was a gift so electric, so genuine, that it really helped me give my best. The energy was so inspiring I had to keep going! I just hope you got as much from me as I got from you…which was everything!” Be sure to look after the break to listen to all the tracks.
From one popular social network to another, Kanye finally caved in and joined the Twitterverse. And you know what? He actually comes across a non-egotistical funnyman. Peep his first tweet: “Up early in the morning taking meetings in Silicone Valley.” This was followed almost immediately by: “Lol I spelled Silicon wrong ( I guess I was still thinking about the other type of silicone ITS A PROCESS!! : )” Then came some important news regarding his upcoming album: “The album is no longer called “Good Ass Job” I’m bouncing a couple of titles around now.” Just confirming our suspicions, Kanye. After giving a handful of shoutouts to various blogs for reporting his Facebook HQ visit, he started to notice how quickly he was garnering a following. In less than two days he managed to gain a following of nearly 300,000 (he’s currently at 293,687 followers). With tweets like these: “My thoughts on Twitter so far… at the end of the day, God damnit I’m killing this shit!!!” and “I think Twitter was designed specifically with me in mind just my humble opinion hahhhahaaaahaaa humble hahahahhahaahaaaa” you might think ‘Ye is stroking his ego again, but I think he’s actually starting to satirize himself. He’s finally realized that he “has the power to let power go” and he’s learning from his past mistakes. Hilarious comic (and one of Kanye’s friends) Aziz Ansari started trending the hashtag #PredictingKanyeTweets, and Kanye simply retweeted jokes that were on him. “Damn I wish Hermes made edible snacks, Cheezits just ain’t dope enough for my mouth”, tweeted Ansari. The fact that he’s not retaliating but instead having fun with his new lease on life through Twitter makes me believe that he’s turning a corner for the better. But don’t take my word for it. Follow @kanyewest and form your own opinions.
At the end of the day, it appears as if Kanye wants to begin a new chapter in his career. After coming out of hiding he decided to tease some tracks and open up his fanbase using the power of social networking tools like Facebook and Twitter. It’s an interesting and unconventional route to take but it’s one I can commend. Welcome back Mr. West. September 14 come now please.
Update: Later in the week Kanye visited a bunch of magazine headquarters including XXL and Rolling Stone. A video surfaced on YouTube from his meeting with the latter outlet. Look for it after the break.
Today BlackBerry posted a new video on YouTube that gives us another glimpse into their latest mobile operating system called BlackBerry 6. New features like social network integration (with Social Feeds that support simultaneous postings on sites like Facebook and Twitter), universal search, an enhanced media interface, and the brand new WebKit-based browser (with pinch/zoom functionality) are teased in the breif video embedded above. It all looks pretty great BlackBerry, but I want to see it in action on a sleek, new Blackberry device. Let’s release this thing already! Oh, and as Engadget points out, it’s worth nothing that the first two sneak peek videos of BB 6 feature a UI that’s make specifically for a full touchscreen device. One wonders how BlackBerry intends to morph the new touch-friendly UI into one that’ll work on a smaller device that sports a physical keyboard–the very form factor that the company is so famous for.