Zachary Levi

Joseph Gordon Levitt

Now that Marvel Studios has been wildly successful at turning some of their most popular comic book properties into hugely profitable feature film series, the publisher turned movie house is taking the next step in their development by trying to prop up one of their more off-the-beaten-path properties as the next big thing. Said property is a ragtag team of intergalactic superheroes known as the Guardians of the Galaxy. The team, which includes characters like Star-Lord, Drax the Destroyer, Rocket Raccoon, Groot, and Gamora, is going to be brought to the big screen by director James Gunn (Super) in a big budget feature that’s scheduled for an August 1, 2014 release.

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What is Casting Couch? It’s the movie news column that’s easing into Christmas with a cup of coffee and some casting reports. Let’s take this one step at a time. Marvel Studios is on such a roll now that any movie they make that ties directly into their upcoming Avengers 2 is going to be a big deal—even if it’s based off of a comic book that nobody’s ever heard of like Guardians of the Galaxy. So, the competition among young actors to get cast as the Guardians’ leader, Star-Lord, is pretty fierce. According to Variety, that competition has been narrowed down to two guys. The trade reports that Jim Sturgess is the sole survivor of the original crop of five actors the studio screen tested for the role, and Zachary Levi impressed so much playing the smaller role of Fandral in Thor 2, that Marvel is looking to give him a larger role in their universe by maybe making him the half-human, half-alien leader of this ragtag crew. Who would you find more believable commanding a gun-toting space-raccoon?

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Zachary Levi

Scheduling conflicts can be a real pain, especially when a sequel gets a greenlight and a studio is forced to round up a cast of supporting characters as memorable as those seen in Marvel’s Thor. For their limited screen time, the Warriors Three and Sif (Jamie Alexander) made quite an impression on audiences. They were more than up to the task of being the God of Thunder’s fondest and fiercest friends, seemingly ripped directly from the comic books and placed on screen. In the first film, the gang included Ray Stevenson as Volstagg, Tadanobu Asano as Hogun and Josh Dallas as Fandral. Now as Thor 2 and director Alan Taylor (Game of Thrones) gear up for production, Josh Dallas’ work on ABC’s Once Upon a Time has gotten in the way and the role of Fandral has been recast. So who’s charismatic enough and without a TV show that can jump in and save the day? How about Chuck star Zachary Levi…

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If you look at the box office numbers that Disney’s 3D re-release of The Lion King did not too long ago, it’s clear that there is more than a little interest out there for seeing some of the studio’s classic efforts being once again released on the big screen. So Beauty and the Beast 3D probably doesn’t need any assistance when it comes to drawing families to the theaters. Regardless, an announcement that Walt Disney Pictures made today confirms that it’s going to get some heavyweight help whether it needs it or not. Disney’s animation department has hit a bit of a slump in the last decade, not being able to recreate the magic of its classic releases or its second golden age that came in the 90s; but one film that has bucked the trend of disappointment and gone on to become quite a success is the studio’s retelling of the Rapunzel legend Tangled. The film was a success financially, praised critically, and I myself know a two-year-old little girl who watches it about three times a day. So she and millions of other little kids will undoubtedly be thrilled to hear that an animated short, Tangled Ever After, is going to be released in front of Beauty and the Beast 3D come January 13th.

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A few weeks ago I attended a screening of Tangled, the 50th animated feature out of Walt Disney Animation Studios. Tangled, of course, is the tale of Rapunzel — though with the expected tilt and sing-a-long twist that is a hallmark of every Disney feature. For those not in the know, the story of Rapunzel and her long locks was most famously told by the Brothers Grimm — though the fairy tale was decidedly darker than the Disney telling, and with key plot details shifted for benefit of an extra happy ending. Instead of Rapunzel (Mandy Moore) being the daughter of a peasant couple stealing vegetables from the garden of an enchantress — she is the daughter of nobility — the king and queen of an unnamed kingdom. Her hair imbued with the ability to restore youth to whomever control its power, Disney’s Rapunzel is stolen away by Mother Gothel (Donna Murphy) for just this purpose, and raised in a well hidden tower in the middle of the forest.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr loosens his belt and falls asleep on the couch after eating too much turkey. But with three days left in the weekend, there’s always the opportunity to brave the hoards of crazy holiday shoppers to see a movie. It’s time to look at a new Disney princess with Tangled, dance with the divas from Burlesque and go Faster with a piece of the Rock.

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November 24th sees the release of Disney’s 50th full-length animated film Tangled, based loosely on the famous fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm, and starring Mandy Moore, Zachary Levi, Ron Perlman, and a loaded cast of talented actors. I had an opportunity to screen the film recently at the Disney AMC 12 at Disneyland in Anaheim, California — and sit down with cast members Zachary Levi (Chuck), Donna Murphy (The Fountain, The Nanny Diaries), as well as directors Nathan Greno and Byron Howard, to talk about the process of making an animated film, and a bit more.

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Walt Disney Pictures has released the first trailer for their upcoming animated film Tangled, which tells the story of Rapunzel and her absurdly long hair. According to the studio, this is an action-packed, swashbuckling, animated musical comedy. Which won’t be so bad, assuming Chuck star Zachary Levi can sing.

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Kevin Carr sits his chubbiness down and sees if Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, Sherlock Holmes and It’s Complicated can make the grade.

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At this rate, every single member of the NBC TV lineup will be in the Alvin and the Chipmunks film series. Need proof? Chuck’s Zachary Levi is down for the film sequel.

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The world has learned a very important lesson this weekend — 3D does not work well when applied to television viewing. Unfortunately, the distraction of 3D almost caused me to miss another great episode of the show I’ve come to love.

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It was just last week that we were talking about how we are glad to see the whole Jill storyline end, and it was also wonderfully comforting to see Chuck back in his old, spy skill-free ways. And it appears that this trend is going to continue…

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Completely aware of how lazy I am for missing two weeks of Chuck recaps, I return with a big, geekirific update on all things Chuck — including the show’s ever growing bank full of geek cred.

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Chuck Versus The Ex

Chuck’s former flame shows up in the form of Jordana Brewster, who brings with her a crazy biochemical weapon to town, forcing Chuck to fight both old feelings and terrorism at the same time.

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The fate of the world rests on Chuck’s mad videogame skills. Plus: Big Mike brings a new sheriff to the Buy More (Tony Hale guest stars).

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Chuck vs. The Cougars

Based on title alone, I would have though that this episode of Chuck had something to do with Agent Charles Carmichael going after a few aging, hottie super-spies. Sadly, I was wrong.

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Chuck vs. The Seduction

Chuck (Zachary Levi) has to go undercover to try and seduce a woman named Sasha (Melinda Clarke) to get back the cipher that was stolen from Casey.

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Chuck Season 2 Begins

Chuck and Sarah finally have a real date–only to be disrupted by a menacing new operative, Mr. Colt (Michael Clarke Duncan).

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published: 11.26.2014
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published: 11.26.2014
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published: 11.21.2014
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published: 11.21.2014
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