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Did You Know: Harrison Ford

Photo by Murray Close/Getty Images - © 2011 Murray Close

Photo by Murray Close/Getty Images – © 2011 Murray Close

There have been few iconic Hollywood actors with the resume of Harrison Ford. Not only is he remembered as the gun-slinging galactic smuggler Han Solo but also as the tomb raiding Indiana Jones. With a career that spans nearly half a century, Ford has become a master of navigating the spotlight while selecting the right roles to keep his legendary career intact. This week we look at a few things you may not have known about Ford and his historic career.  Continue reading

What to Watch: Age of Adaline

Photo by Diyah Pera - © 2015  Lionsgate

Photo by Diyah Pera – © 2015 Lionsgate

If you were intrigued enough to venture from your warm cave and into the wintery wilderness to see The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, you will probably be inclined to take a light spring stroll to your local movie theater to see The Age of Adaline, coming to movie screens this Friday. Packed with more romance and a bit more youth, this “curse of immortality” romance fantasy takes many of its points from the successful David Fincher film but certainly looks to pack far more melodrama into a much shorter running time.  Continue reading

Did You Know: Mark Hamill

film still via  IMDB

film still via IMDB

There are few actors in the history of Hollywood who have been linked to their iconic character portrayals as much as Mark Hamill. His work in Star Wars as Luke Skywalker not only made him a household name but also would come to dominate a good portion of his career. Still, Hamill managed to do some incredible things in entertainment that many people may not know about. Not only has his work spanned efforts in front of the screen, but also behind it and in various different mediums. This week, we look to shed some light on a few of the more obscure facts you already knew but may have never associated with Mark Hamill.

Hamill has had an Extensive Career in the World of Comics

Many people know of Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker but his contribution to the comicbook world is equally as epic. In the 90’s, Hamill made his first major mark as the voice of The Joker in Batman: The Animated Series. The show lasted only two seasons but the character and his personification of it lived on in six other Batman series as well as Superman and Justice League cartoons. He also jumped ship for a short period voicing the evil Hobgoblin in several Spider-Man animated adventures throughout the late 90’s.

His work in the comic world eventually spilled over as he became a writer for the Dark Horse comic series The Black Pearl. He also became a familiar face at comicbook conventions as his celebrity in Star Wars wasn’t the only reason people wanted to see him anymore. As an avid collector, Hamill has always enjoyed comics and has taken any opportunity to place his stamp in that world. While many may not be aware, he also played the DC villain The Trickster in the original Flash live action series.

The Car Accident that Nearly Ended it All

Shortly after filming Star Wars, Hamill was involved in a terrible car accident that nearly ended his career. His condition required plastic surgery to repair the damage and affected his appearance in the sequel The Empire Strikes Back. Early on in that film, Luke is attacked by a snow beast and scarred across his face, giving an easy explanation to Hamill’s appearance. Many have said that it was subtle but when viewing the film series back to back, the changes to Hamill’s face in such a short time frame are very noticeable.

The accident itself is a bit of a mystery. Hamill’s recollection of the event in a recorded interview with Gossip magazine is a bit vague. He claims to have been distracted in his BMW, missing an off ramp and being unable to navigate a four lane highway. Reports of his condition after the crash varied greatly from needed full facial reconstruction to minor, yet noticeable plastic surgery.

Making History

Mark Hamill has a very special distinction, shared only with Joe Mantegna and Elizabeth Taylor. These three not only played fictional characters on the long-running show The Simpsons but also played themselves on different occasions. He shared the screen with Mantegna in the episode Mayored to the Mob. Hamill also had the distinction of playing the role of Luke Skywalker for the NPR radio play version of Star Wars in 1981 and in The Empire Strikes Back in 1983. He was unable to finish off the trilogy a few years later as a scheduling conflict made it impossible.

Hamill will rejoin original Star Wars cast members Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher in the latest installment of the franchise entitled Episode VII: The Force Awakens due out in theaters later this year.

Did You Know: Clint Eastwood

Few artists have made the transition from actor to director as seamlessly and as successfully as Clint Eastwood. His career has spanned over fifty years with double digits in acting roles and directing. The awards garnered during that time are also staggering as he has won Academy Awards for directing with both  Million Dollar Baby and Unforgiven. Throughout all of this he has remained an icon in Hollywood and one of the most active artists throughout the changing trends in decades. This week we hope to enlighten you with a few bits of information that you may not know about Clint Eastwood and his expansive career.  Continue reading

What to Watch: The Longest Ride

image via  IMDB

image via IMDB

The second weekend of April is yet another set of dates on the calendar where little is being offered in the way of new releases. Holdovers from previous weeks, namely Furious 7, should hold strong but Fox is hoping to capitalize on the lack of new releases with yet another Nicholas Sparks adaptation in The Longest Ride. The romantic drama sees Scott Eastwood, son of famed actor/director Clint Eastwood, and Britt Robertson battling cultural boundaries in an attempt to find love. Needless to say the producers are hoping to grab the female audience members who may not be so quick to see the testosterone-filled action flick Furious 7 this weekend.  Continue reading

Throwback Thursday: The Fast and the Furious (2001)

image via  pixshark.com

image via pixshark.com

There needs to be a disclaimer before I review this film. I watched it on its release date on June 22, 2001. It was a reward my friends and I gave to ourselves for finishing finals at the end of our junior year of high school. I haven’t seen the movie since then and, to be honest, never watched any of the sequels that followed. I didn’t dislike the first film. It was just that my tastes and lack of knowledge about automobiles didn’t give me a sense of urgency to run to my local theater and buy a ticket. Fourteen years later, I thought it would be a great time to re-watch the film that launched one of the most successful movie franchises of the past twenty years. It was like traveling back through time, except this time I had the benefit of hindsight when assessing my feelings about the first installment.  Continue reading

Did You Know: Paul Walker

photo by Scott Garfield via  IMDB

photo by Scott Garfield via IMDB

This weekend’s release of Furious 7 marks the final cinematic memorial for Paul Walker, who tragically passed away in a car accident in late 2013. The actor, whose career was thrown into the spotlight thanks to the high-octane action series, sees his final appearance at the franchise’s crossroads. While some may define Walker’s career by his role in the series, he had quite an interesting career before and after Fast and Furious began.  Continue reading

What to Watch: Furious 7

image via  IMDB

image via IMDB

When you look at the theatrical release calendar for the weekend of April 3, 2015 you’ll find something very interesting. There’s only one new film receiving a nationwide release. The holiday weekend certainly has something to do with that but overall, no one wants to compete with the powerhouse production that is Furious 7. The seventh and latest installment of the Fast and Furious franchise is both the beginning and the end of what we know about the series. The untimely death of star actor Paul Walker combined with aging veterans like Vin Diesel allows fans of the previous films to get one last glimpse of their favorite characters before producers do what they must to keep the successful franchise going.  Continue reading

What to Watch: Home

It’s the calm before the storm. Last week Insurgent was the first major wave to crash onto box-office shores with more following just slightly behind. Unfortunately it won’t be this week as Furious 7 is still a week away. Instead we have a very thin week for releases where most of the noise should be holdovers from the week prior and a Dreamworks film that has received little mainstream attention called HomeContinue reading

Throwback Thursday: The Philadelphia Story (1940)

image via kcwtoday.co.uk

image via kcwtoday.co.uk

Just one year after his departure from Gone with the Wind and his uncredited work on The Wizard of Oz, George Cukor continued to churn out films that would be remembered for years to come. In particular, his 1940 film The Philadelphia Story was not only a success but also assisted and galvanizing the careers of Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant and Jimmy Stewart. All of whom took part in one of the quickest and most efficient productions of that era.  Continue reading