Allison Janney


Once an actor stars in something that’s widely loved enough among Internet circles to be considered as having “geek cred,” they earn quite a bit of leeway when it comes to judgment over whatever lame projects that they might do afterward. We’ve seen this phenomenon take place when everyone was willing to sit through six seasons of Castle without doing much complaining, just because of how much they loved Nathan Fillion in Firefly. We’ve seen it when people have actually been willing to buy tickets to go see Donald Glover rap. There’s perhaps been no bigger example of someone being handed a nerd cred get out of jail free card in the history of modern entertainment than Jason Bateman coming off of starring in Arrested Development though. AD was basically like nerd catnip—it was funny, it was weird, it was underappreciated, it was intricately self-referential—and after Bateman’s turn as the series’ awkward straight man, Michael Bluth, he suddenly found himself anointed as the new comedy geek Jesus, after experiencing a period where he was being looked at as something of a has-been—an answer to an 80s pop culture trivia question. Unfortunately for everyone though, Bateman’s career since AD was cancelled has also become basically the most egregious example of someone pushing that nerd cred leeway past its breaking point that we’ve ever seen, to the point where his face showing up in a movie trailer has now become the sort of thing that forces former fans to unconsciously let out […]


Screen Shot 2012-12-17 at 12.37.16 PM

Struck By Lightning is a huge deal for Glee star Chris Colfer – at only 22, he not only stars in the film, but also wrote the screenplay and executive produced. He has also adapted his screenplay for the film into the YA novel Struck By Lightning: The Carson Phillips Journal, marking his second published novel after The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell. Directed by Brian Dannelly (Saved!), Struck by Lightning tells the story of high school overachiever Carson Phillips (Colfer) who dreams of leaving behind his small town, getting into Northwestern, and becoming a wildly successful journalist. However, these dreams come to an abrupt end when he is struck by lightning and dies. The film unfolds via Carson’s posthumous narration, as he recounts his struggles with his emotionally-challenged alcoholic mother (Allison Janney), his seldom-seen father (Dermot Mulroney) and his father’s pregnant fiancée (Christina Hendricks), but mainly how he and his best friend Malerie (Rebel Wilson) blackmail their fellow students into writing for their literary magazine. Colfer was kind enough to talk about his inspirations when writing the screenplay, the exciting festival experience, and other projects that are on his very creative horizon.


Nicolas Cage

What is Casting Couch? It’s your Monday look at all of the great work casting agents and PR people did over the weekend to keep those Hollywood gears turning. UPDATED: We dreamed too soon, kids. It seems like Sylvester Stallone is fully committed to his experiment of figuring out how many big name celebrities have to be packed into an Expendables movie before one of them actually becomes interesting. The latest news regarding his quest (found on Stallone’s Facebook page by JoBlo) is that Nicolas Cage has been confirmed for a role in The Expendables 3, and that Harrison Ford, Wesley Snipes, and Mickey Rourke are the names he intends on recruiting next. You keep on trucking there, Mr. Stallone. With the addition of just five or ten more celebrities, The Expendables 3 is bound to be the one that finally gets out of first gear and actually becomes a decent action movie. We have faith!



The year 2008 must have been a strange one for Clark Gregg, as that year marked the multi-hyphenate’s big break into the Marvel Universe with the debut of his role as Agent Coulson in Iron Man. Since then, Gregg has gone on to co-star in other Marvel properties Iron Man 2, Thor, and The Avengers, along with taking center stage in two of Marvel’s “One-Shot” short films. And while that success has been quite well-deserved, it does come with a footnote, because 2008 was also the year that Gregg’s directorial debut, Choke (from the Chuck Palahniuk novel of the same name), hit screens. The Sam Rockwell-starring film bowed at the Sundance Film Festival, earning a Grand Jury Prize, Dramatic nod for Gregg and a Special Jury Prize, Dramatic for his cast (which also included Anjelica Huston, a still-emerging Kelly Macdonald, and Brad William Henke), but it went on to earn less than $4m in worldwide release. Fight Club this was not. And Gregg hasn’t written or directed a film since – which is a shame, because Choke is nothing short of excellent and exuberant and insane and true to the spirit of Palahniuk’s work and complete with some wonderfully oddball performances). In short, we’ve been waiting for a new Gregg film ever since. And now we’re getting one.



Editor’s note: Liberal Arts opens in limited release this Friday (just in time for back-to-school!), so please enjoy our Sundance review of the film, originally published on January 23, 2012. Triple threat Josh Radnor‘s first feature, happythankyoumoreplease, debuted at Sundance in 2010, hitting big with the crowds and ultimately winning the Audience Award. The film was written and directed by Radnor, who also starred in it as a disaffected twentysomething struggling to make meaningful connections with others in big, bad New York City. Radnor’s latest outing, Liberal Arts, is written and directed by Radnor, and stars the multi-hyphenate as– well, you probably know the rest. But while happythankyoumoreplease was perhaps too much of a classic first feature – complete with overly precious touches and too much reliance on the magic of coincidence and not enough emphasis on the sort of things that actually happen in the real world – Liberal Arts sees Radnor and his craft maturing wonderfully, which is startlingly in-line with the aims of the actual film.


Liberal Arts Movie 2012

Multi-hyphenate Josh Radnor has had a real nice time at the Sundance Film Festival. His debut film, happythankyoumoreplease, premiered at the festival in 2010, and he just brought his second feature, Liberal Arts, to Park City this past January. Both films star Radnor as a shiftless twentysomething who is, for a variety of reasons, unhappy with his current lot in life. But whereas happythankyoumoreplease tended to feel too twee, too naval-gazey, too unformed, Liberal Arts showed a tremendous progression in Radnor’s talents and execution. And now you can see it, too! IFC will release the film just in time for back to school on September 14 of this year. The film also stars Elizabeth Olsen, Richard Jenkins, Allison Janney, and Zac Efron, and should be the perfect way to ease back into fall drudgery after the fireworks of the summer season.



This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr heads to the desert to hide in a cave, hoping against hope that some mystical bald alien will beam him to Mars so he can make a pass at the ridiculously gorgeous Lynn Collins in a brass bikini. Unfortunately, no one came to his rescue, so he snuck into an abandoned house in upstate New York to terrorize some people. Again, no one came. That left Kevin to skip his movies this week so he could go to the library and find a book that would allow him to curse Eddie Murphy into not speaking. He hasn’t been heard from since.



What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly movie news round-up that’s a little tired, a little wired and it thinks it deserves a little appreciation around here! Alright, so that’s the insomnia talking. For now, lets just do the news like we always do, shall we? The headline photo of the night is a shot of two morons Russell Brand and Alec Baldwin in Adam Shankman’s Rock of Ages, a film that will combine major Hollywood names with an infamously terrible director and a slew of over-the-top musical numbers. It’s so ridiculous that it just might work. But probably not.



How do you follow up after last week’s emotional explosion? If you’re the producers of Lost, the answer is simple. You follow up with an episode that is perhaps one of the most divisive frames in the six year run of the series.

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published: 01.26.2015
published: 01.25.2015
published: 01.25.2015

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