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Ice Cube​'s real-life son plays him in 'Straight Outta Compton'​ — but the 2-year audition process wasn't easy

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Oshea Jackson Jaimie Trueblood.JPGO'Shea Jackson Jr., 24, is receiving rave reviews for playing Ice Cube in the hit N.W.A. biopic "Straight Outta Compton."

You could say he was born to play the role, as he's the real-life son of N.W.A. member Ice Cube, whose real name is O’Shea Jackson. But the part wasn’t handed to him.

ice cube o'shea jacksonTo earn the role, Jackson went through a grueling two-year process that included constant auditions and working with three different acting coaches.

"It's all these things to build confidence within me," Jackson told Entertainment Weekly about the process.

And though Cube was supportive of this son's growth, as a producer on the film he had to find the best actor to play himself.

"If we found a better Cube, then we had to go with the best man for the job," Cube told People. "That's how acting and movie shoots work. So I couldn't give it to him — and I wouldn't if I could because that's easy."

Actors and rappers also auditioned for the role, with a short list coming down to Jackson and two others gunning for the Cube role, Jackson told People.

But the final decision didn’t come down to who had the look or tone of Cube, but to who had the best rapping skills.Straight Outta Compton Jaimie Trueblood Oscar finalThe actors chosen to play the members of N.W.A. had to also be able to convincingly perform the classic songs from the group's debut album, "Straight Outta Compton." There would be no dubbing of voices for the songs featured in the movie — they would have to rap just like the legends they were portraying.

It was Jackson's prowess on the mic that inevitably landed him the role.

Ultimately, Jackson perfectly portrayed his dad in the movie. Many who have seen the film have been blown away by Jackson's performance. Cinema Blend writes that it's Jackson's "uncanny ability to embody his father, from his presence to his quirks, that gives the film its oomph."

Ice Cube O'Shea Jackson Jr Straight Outta ComptonAfter viewing the final cut of the film, Jackson got his father's seal of approval.

"As a parent, you always are proud of the moments when you kid steps up," Cube told Tribune News. "So I'm forever grateful that he stepped up to this challenge and portrayed me in the movie. I couldn't picture anyone else doing it. I was totally engulfed watching him perform. See, I've never been to an N.W.A. concert — I've done an N.W.A. concert, but never had the chance as an audience member to experience it, and I was like, 'Pretty powerful!'"

O'Shea Jackson Jr. is one of Ice Cube's four children with Kimberly Woodruff, the rapper's wife of 23 years.

Here's the family at the premiere of "Barbershop 2: Back in Business" in 2004:

Ice Cube Oshea jackson wife sonAnd here's the trio at the Los Angeles premiere of "Straight Outta Compton" on August 10:

ice cube o'shea jackson straight outta comptonSince its release last Friday, "Straight Outta Compton" has raked in a whopping $67.7 million at the box office.

SEE ALSO: A woman who was allegedly assaulted by Dr. Dre says "Straight Outta Compton" left out an 'ugly' truth

MORE: Comedian Michael Blackson reveals his $14 'Next Friday' residual check — and now he wants a piece of Ice Cube's 'Straight Outta Compton' earnings

Join the conversation about this story »

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Here's how the 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' logo looks in other countries

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The Force Awakens' villain, Kylo Ren

When "Star Wars: Episode VII" opens in theaters this December, it won't just be a big hit in the US. 

It will be a huge, global phenomenon. 

The film is expected to shatter box-office records currently held by "Avatar" and "Titanic." Analyst estimates have ranged from $1.2 billion - $1.75 billion globally, and still, that may not be enough.

While US audiences know the film as “The Force Awakens,” fans around the globe will know the next “Star Wars” by many different names. 

Take a look at how fans around the world refer to “Star Wars: Episode VII."

First, here's what the logo for "The Force Awakens" looks like in English.



In France, they call it "Le Reveil De La Force."



This is what it goes by in Russia.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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30 of your favorite movie posters have been recreated using only emoji

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emoji mosaic mean girls

This Emoji Mosaic generator makes it easy to turn any image into a piece of emoji art — so we emoji-fied the posters from 30 of our favorite movies.

Engineered by New York Times web developer Eric Andrew Lewis, the website renders any image into piece of emoji artwork.

We used it to turn Harry Potter, Darth Vader, and even the cast of "Mean Girls" into awesome emoji masterpieces. 

Emoji are so popular, they're even getting their own movie. While we wait for the all-emoji flick, these posters should tide you over.

 

Here's the regular "Frozen" poster.



And here's the emoji mosaic version. Do you wanna build an emoji snowman?



Seth Rogen and James Franco looking stoic on the poster for "The Interview."



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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How Jennifer Lawrence went from obscurity to the highest-paid actress in the world in 5 years

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Jennifer Lawrence Jennifer Lawrence was just named Forbes' highest-paid actress of 2015.

At just 25, Lawrence raked in $52 million this year alone.

But the Oscar-winning "Hunger Games" actress has come a long way since her humble beginnings in Louisville, Kentucky. 

Let's look back at her meteoric rise from farm girl to Hollywood's top earner.

Additional reporting by Melia Robinson.

SEE ALSO: 27 movies you have to see this fall

Lawrence was born August 15, 1990 — the first girl to be born on her dad's side of the family in 50 years.

Her family's day camp in Louisville, Kentucky.

Source: Rolling Stone



She grew up on a horse farm in Louisville, Kentucky, where her parents raised unbroken stallions because they were cheaper.

Sources: Rolling Stone, "The Late Show with David Letterman"



Her family didn't believe in "seeking medical treatment." She was hit by a car at 18 months and deformed her tailbone after being thrown from a horse. Neither incident warranted a trip to the doctor's office.

Sources: "Jimmy Kimmel Live,""Late Show with David Letterman"



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

This small company wants to be Marvel 2.0 — and they just might do it

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VALIANT UNIVERSE_001It was in a cramped, messy conference room overflowing with boxes and memorabilia.  That’s where three men sat across from me and calmly told me their plan to overthrow two of the biggest entertainment giants in the world.

Together, the three of them — Dinesh Shamdasani, Gavin Cuneo, and Russell Brown — represent the corporate leadership of Valiant Entertainment, a small comics publisher with gigantic ambition.

They might even have a shot at realizing that ambition, with a recent nine-figure investment from the Beijing company DMG Entertainment to turn their comic book characters into feature films.

"Another publisher might’ve created Valiant Studios, hired creative executives in LA, and done up the offices," says Valiant Entertainment's CEO and Chief Creative Officer Dinesh Shamdasani. "I mean, look at this thing. Look at this place."

The soft-spoken yet talkative executive acknowledges our cramped surroundings in the publisher's small Midtown West office, where there isn't enough room to house both the comics the company publishes and all of the people responsible for putting them out into the world. "We want to put the money in places where people can see it."

X-O Manowar

They're going to need to, because what the Valiant team wants to accomplish sounds a little bit crazy.

"We're fighting two giant conglomerates," says Shamdasani. "We're fighting Warner Bros. and Disney, not Marvel and DC."

That's big talk from a company that isn't anywhere near the household name as its targets. But Valiant is already a company full of small miracles. 

The Valiant Entertainment of today didn't even exist five years ago. Before 2012, the Valiant name was a brief yet brilliant spark in comics history, an early-90s success story founded in part by former Marvel Comics talent. The comics they published — which kicked off in 1992 — were a remarkable success, with books like "X-O Manowar" (a story about a Fifth-Century Visigoth warrior who finds high-tech alien armor and is thrust into the present) and "Shadowman" (a jazz-and-voodoo themed supernatural thriller).

Shadowman

However, the turn of the century was not kind to the comic book industry, and Valiant would be shuttered in the early 2000s, the victim of corporate consolidation. 

Then came 2012, and everything changed. 

That summer was when a rebooted Valiant, with new leadership and financial backing, debuted to the comics reading world with the "Summer of Valiant," a splashy promotion for the relaunch of the comic book universe first seen in the early 90s. The company re-introduced its comics — leading with their most popular character "X-O Manowar"— pretty much from scratch, slowly rebuilding its fictional universe in a smart, modern way.

High-concept superheroics became sprawling sci-fi epics. Stories about psychic teenagers became contemplations on addiction and morality. A "Terminator" -esque action thriller became fodder for a somber story about humanity and redemption.  

And they were all very, very, good.

Almost overnight, Valiant was back in business, and over the past three years they have turned one of the most unlikely revivals in comics into an enviable hot streak with no signs of slowing down. Crazy, right?

Harbinger 12 cover

"Our strategy is very simple," says Shamdasani. "Step one: focus on publishing. Don't bite off more than you can chew. Focus on quality. Build long term. Step two: Expand slowly. Slow and steady wins the race. Do quality merchandise, do quality digital initiatives. [Travel] the convention circuit. Step three is to go into larger media." 

To hear Shamdasani share the secret of Valiant's success is to, frankly, hear the most common-sense foundation any decent business is built on. It is not radical. It is not innovative. It is not very sexy. But it is working, and it looks like it really is putting the small publisher on track to being within grasp of its stated ambition: to become "Marvel 2.0."

But there is a murky middle space between kicking off and sustaining a comic book business and becoming a household name. Valiant has been remarkably aggressive and successful with the former — spending much of this year on a lengthy conventiontour and making "allies" out of retailers — and becoming a household name. 

"We're in a very fortunate situation," says Russell Brown, a former Marvel executive and Valiant's director of consumer products, marketing, and ad sales. "We don't have to rush anything, we don't have to extract crazy dollars from people  — which sets up a whole chain. If you push people towards high dollars to participate (and everyone wants to be a part of Marvel 2.0), the problem is they rush product to market, it doesn't sell through, then there's a problem and people say 'Valiant is not working.' So what's the rush? We're slowly, slowly finding the right partners, in the right categories — it's a real progression." 

BLOODSHOT #1

Those partners are eclectic, varied, and — according to Valiant — successful. There's the tea inspired by X-O Manowar, the metal album inspired by Shadowman, the costumes they designed for the USA luge team for the 2014 Winter Olympics — the year the States took home the Gold for the first time.

As interesting and bizarre as some of these may seem, according to Brown, they're all carefully selected to put the Valiant name on quality products that will appeal to the niche they cater to — and hopefully inspire interest in Valiant. 

Then there's the movies.

The centerpiece of the film plan Valiant has announced so far (there is more in the works) is a five-picture deal with Sony centered on its "Bloodshot" and "Harbinger" comics — each franchise will get two films apiece, before crossing over in a grand finale called "Harbinger Wars."

HARBINGER WARS_001_COVER_HENRY

However, the sort of interconnected movie universe pioneered by Marvel Studios is a thing that lots of studios want in on — and not just for comic book characters

But audience fatigue is not something Valiant is all that worried about.

"They have elements of the superhero genre; certainly the iconography and conventions," says Shamdasani, "But they're built to be in genres that aren't 'superhero' ... You can also see it in our film choices. Fans ask why not X-O Manowar — he's the biggest, largest-selling character."

"Bloodshot's a character that's more easily adapted to a film genre," Shamdasani continues. "It's something that a larger audience can look at a trailer and understand 'Okay, I've seen films like this before. I've seen 'Terminator,' I've seen 'Robocop,' I've seen 'Total Recall,' I've seen 'Die Hard.' I know what something like this is going to be, and it's something I can get behind." 

But it's not just about positioning their comic book characters as something that filmgoers are already interested in, according to Shamdasani. There's also the creative decisions — like hiring Chad Stahelski and David Leitch, the directors of the excellent sleeper hit "John Wick"— that combine with smart positioning to result in a more interesting whole. 

john wick keanu

"We oftentimes relate back to our approach in the comic book world in how we're going to approach the film world, in that the creative and quality of the product has always been at the forefront and the most important thing that we do," says Gavin Cuneo, Valiant's Chief Operating Officer and CFO. "That's the way we're approaching films as well." 

In the next few weeks, the Valiant team will be moving out of those tiny offices to a space with enough room to have more of its team working together. It will be their fourth move in just as many years. 

It's a weird sort of real-life parallel to Valiant's rise as an entertainment company — unassuming, always moving, and unusually grounded for the comics industry. A place that runs off a carnival barker's energy, forever selling the promise of something you've never seen before and is quite often something you have.

ARCHER AND ARMSTRONG

"We're a different type of universe than the ones that are out there — we were created more recently, which means we more accurately reflect the world that we live in today," says Shamdasani. "[These characters] are not necessarily superheroes, they don't have capes and secret identities ... there's much more diversity, more big female characters, much more diversity in race, religion, creed. All because the universe was created in the 90s, where it was a more diverse world we were living in, as opposed to reflecting the 60s when Marvel was created, or the 30s, when the DC universe was created."

Much of the virtue behind Valiant Entertainment's work is bolstered by one important fact: They're small. In their version of the old story, David didn't beat Goliath with a lucky stone's throw, but by moving faster and wearing out their larger, slower, all-consuming competition. 

If Valiant is successful, then it too will be big — and with that bigness will come a whole new set of problems to solve. 

"Our challenge, I think, is one thing: I think it's just time," says Shamdasani. "The original Valiant set up the foundation, we're picking up the ball and running with it. Our goal is to tell as many great stories, one comic at a time, brick by brick — for as long as we can."

Join the conversation about this story »

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Dr. Dre's alleged assault on a woman was in the 'Straight Outta Compton' script but it got cut

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Dr Dre Kevin Winter

"Straight Outta Compton," the biopic on rap group N.W.A., has received critical acclaim and broken records at the box office during its opening weekend. But there's a glaring omission from the movie that has led to some serious criticism of the film.

One of the most infamous moments in N.W.A. lore was Dr. Dre allegedly physically assaulting female hip-hop journalist Denise “Dee” Barnes.

In 1991, Barnes claims she was viciously beaten by then-N.W.A. rapper Dr. Dre on the floor of the woman's bathroom of the Po Na Na Souk nightclub in Los Angeles.

Barnes says Dre was provoked by a recent segment which aired on her FOX show "Pump It Up!" in which Ice Cube, who had just left the group, trashed his former colleagues.

According to the LA Times, a version of the incident was included in an early draft of the screenplay for "Straight Outta Compton." Corey Hawkins Straight Outta Compton Jaimie TruebloodHere’s a description of the scene from the Times piece:

In the scene, the fictional Dre, “eyes glazed, drunk, with an edge of nastiness, contempt” (per noted from the script) spots Barnes at the party and approaches her.

“Saw that [expletive] you did with Cube. Really had you under his spell, huh? Ate up everything he said. Let him diss us. Sell us out.”

“I just let him tell his story,” Barnes’ character retorts, “That’s what I do. It’s my job.”

“I thought we were cool, you and me,” Dre fires back. “But you don’t give a [expletive]. You just wanna laugh at N.W.A, make us all look like fools.”

The conversation escalates, Barnes throws her drink in Dre’s face before he attacks her “flinging her around like a rag-doll, while she screams, cries, begs for him to stop.”

This is one of numerous scenes that were never shot. Others included Dre being shot four times in the leg, his house catching on fire during a wild party, and a flashback of his younger brother in the fight that ended his life.

At a public Q&A, the film’s director F. Gary Gray addressed the omission of the Dee Barnes incident saying, “We couldn’t fit everything into the movie,” saying he chose stories that better “served the narrative.”

Barnes wrote about the incident not being in the movie for Gawker recently:

Dee Barnes“[My attack] isn’t depicted in 'Straight Outta Compton,' but I don’t think it should have been, either,” she wrote. “The truth is too ugly for a general audience. But what should have been addressed is that it occurred." 

Barnes sued Dre for damages and the two settled out of court

This is not the only incident. Dre’s former fiancée Michel’le told Vlad TV that he physically abused her, even “shooting at” her during an argument.

In a story for Rolling Stone recently, Dre admitted to being violent towards women in the past.

dr dre beats“I made some f------ horrible mistakes in my life,” he said.

“I was young, f------ stupid. I would say all the allegations aren't true — some of them are.

“Those are some of the things that I would like to take back. It was really f------ up.

“But I paid for those mistakes, and there's no way in hell that I will ever make another mistake like that again."

SEE ALSO: Here's the "Straight Outta Compton" casting call that everybody thought was racist

Join the conversation about this story »

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The 10 biggest winners and losers of the summer movie season

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avengers age of ultron

Before we say goodbye to summer, it’s time to look back on how the movie business did the last few months.

Overall, Hollywood had an incredible summer at the multiplex with numerous record-breaking releases — incidentally coming from the same studio. But there were also some major disappointments.

So let’s look back at the movies, people, and studios that make up the winners and losers of this summer movie season.

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WINNER: Universal

No one saw this coming. Without a superhero franchise on its summer slate, few could imagine Universal would be at the top of the heap at the global box office.

But it turned out what the studio had this summer were titles that had stories with built-in mass appeal. Thanks to the sensational performances of "Furious 7,""Jurassic World," and "Minions," to name a few, Universal has made more than $5.52 billion at the worldwide box office, making it the highest grossing year ever for a studio.



LOSER: Josh Trank

It's hard to find anyone in Hollywood who lost more over the summer than filmmaker Josh Trank. At one time he was the new "it" director, with the "Fantastic Four" reboot by 20th Century Fox coming out and prepping to direct one of the "Star Wars" anthology projects.

But following reports of Trank’s alleged erratic behavior on the set of "Four," Trank left the "Star Wars" film. Now with "Four" bombing at the box office and Trank’s Twitter response to the critics' reaction, the 31-year-old is at a crossroads.



WINNER: "Straight Outta Compton"

After years of teasing, a biopic on the legendary rap group N.W.A was finally released over the summer, and it turned out a few people wanted to see it.

Actually, a lot of people. The film had the highest-grossing opening weekend for a music biopic of all time with $60 million. And yes, it's another successful release by Universal this summer.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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‘Straight Outta Compton’ set to top the box office for a second straight week

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eazy e straight compton

With three lackluster R-rated titles opening over the weekend, it looks like “Straight Outta Compton,” the biopic on rap group N.W.A., will take the top spot at the US box office this weekend.

Following its monster $60 million opening weekend last week, the movie will repeat with a projected $30 million-$25 million weekend, according to Deadline

Out of the new titles this weekend — “Sinister 2,” “Hitman: Agent 47,” and “American Ultra” — the horror sequel “Sinister 2,” will likely be the strongest, taking in $17.5 million - $18 million, per industry estimates.

SEE ALSO: A 'Straight Outta Compton' sequel is already in the works featuring Snoop Dogg and Tupac Shakur

Join the conversation about this story »

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Dr. Dre apologizes 'to the women I've hurt' after 'Straight Outta Compton' controversy

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Dr. Dre

Amid renewed uproar over allegations that he physically abused women, Dr. Dre has admitted he regrets his past behavior.

"Twenty-five years ago I was a young man drinking too much and in over my head with no real structure in my life. However, none of this is an excuse for what I did," Dre told the New York Times in a statement. "I’ve been married for 19 years and every day I’m working to be a better man for my family, seeking guidance along the way. I’m doing everything I can so I never resemble that man again. I apologize to the women I’ve hurt. I deeply regret what I did and know that it has forever impacted all of our lives.”

Dr. Dre Nicole YoungClaims by hip-hop journalist Dee Barnes and former R&B singer Michel'le, who was once the hip-hop star's fiancee, that Dre assaulted them have received increased attention since the release of the N.W.A biopic Straight Outta Compton, which doesn't include such incidents, leading Michel'le and Barnes to speak out about the movie omitting what they said happened to them.

Apple, where Dre works as a consultant after selling his Beats company to the tech giant, also issued the following statement: “Dre has apologized for the mistakes he’s made in the past and he’s said that he’s not the same person that he was 25 years ago. We believe his sincerity and after working with him for a year and a half, we have every reason to believe that he has changed.”

Michel'le told VladTV she has accepted that his allegedly abusive behavior during the six years they were together, which they've both openly acknowledged, isn't in Compton.

"Why would Dre put me in it? If they start from where they start from," she said, "I was just a quiet girlfriend who got beat up and told to sit down and shut up."

She also recently recounted his alleged abuse, telling morning show The Breakfast Club, "When he gave me my very first black eye, we laid in the bed and cried. He was crying and I was crying because I was in shock, hurt and in pain. I don’t know why he was crying, but he said 'I’m really sorry.' That was the only time he ever said he was really sorry. And he said, 'I’ll never hit you in that eye again, okay?'"

Dre's remarks echo his comments to Rolling Stone in its Straight Outta Compton cover story, telling the magazine, "I made some f—ing horrible mistakes in my life. I was young, f—ing stupid. I would say all the allegations aren't true — some of them are. Those are some of the things that I would like to take back. It was really f—ed up. But I paid for those mistakes, and there's no way in hell that I will ever make another mistake like that again."

SEE ALSO: Dr. Dre's alleged assault on a woman was in the 'Straight Outta Compton' script but it got cut

Join the conversation about this story »

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Facebook is asking this guy to prove that his last name is really 'Avatar'

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Avatar movie

A couple in Arizona claims that Facebook has banned them from using the site until they verify their unique last name: Avatar. 

Earlier this week, Balizar Orion Avatar claims he tried to log into Facebook and discovered that his account had been deleted, KTVK reported

Avatar is recently married. His wife, Audry, says she has not been able to change her last name on Facebook, though her account remains active. 

The couple believes their last name is being blocked because of its connection to James Cameron's 2009 blockbuster, "Avatar." 

In the movie, Avatars are giant, blue-skinned creatures. Not exactly a couple of humans from Arizona. 

"I actually did think about calling James Cameron or trying to get a hold of James Cameron and being like, 'Ya know, man, my last name's Avatar and I'm taking a lot of grief from your movie,'"Avatar told KTVK. "'Maybe some compensation would be much appreciated.'"

The Cameron movie isn't the only reason Facebook tends to flag "Avatar" as a fake name. Digital communities like "Second Life" refer to people's characters as avatars. For this reason, it's one of several names that the site flags as potentially fake, a Facebook representative told KTVK. 

Tech Insider reached out to get the latest from Facebook and we'll update when we hear back.

In the meantime, Balizar and Audry have been asked to provide photo identification to Facebook to prove that their last name is legitimate, a process the site has been known to use to verify users with unusual names. 

In 2014, for example, a New York woman was required to submit her ID to Facebook after she wanted to change her name from "Melinda Kiss" to her married name "Melinda Kiss Flecker." Flecker said she was forced verify her name because Facebook thought it was "too suggestive."

Join the conversation about this story »

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Here's what the 'Hitman: Agent 47' mid-credits scene means for the series

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hitman agent 47 Reiner Bajo

Major spoilers from the new movie "Hitman: Agent 47" will be discussed in this article, so proceed at your own risk. 

Zachary Quinto plays a not-so-good guy in "Hitman: Agent 47." That’s not really a spoiler, though. The trailers for the film let that one slip out early on, but we didn’t know just how bad a guy he actually was. If you’re unfamiliar with the world of the original video games — which, admittedly, I wasn’t before seeing the film — then the ending of Agent 47 might have you scratching your head. Luckily, the producer and cast were on hand during a recent press day to help us answer some pivotal questions. 

"Hitman: Agent 47" stars Rupert Friend as the title character. A product of the now ended Agent Program, he is one of many clones genetically enhanced to become the world’s best killer. He encounters Katia van Dees (played by Hannah Ware) and the two set out to undo a rival organization led by a man named Le Clerq ("Avengers: Age of Ultron" star Thomas Kretschmann). Le Clerq is attempting to restart the Agent Program, and Quinto’s John Smith is a product of these efforts. Though Smith is a formidable threat, Le Clerq needs Dr. Litvenko (Ciaran Hinds), the man behind the original program, to complete his work. 

Agent 47 has a couple of face-offs with Smith, but their last encounter sees the villain electrocuted and left for dead. However, if you stayed in your seats to watch the mid-credits stinger, you see the camera zoom over Smith’s body, now with blonde hair, to reveal he’s still alive. This is the origin of The Albino.

The Albino"He’s kind of like Agent 47’s Joker," producer Adrian Askarieh told Cinema Blend in describing the character. The Albino, called Mark Parchezzi III in the games, is much like Agent 47; he too is a clone, made by a rival Agent Program, with a comparable skill set to the games’ title character. As Askarieh described, 

"He’s a complete anarchist, he has no allegiance. He just wants to destroy 47… We wanted the Albino in here somehow. It’s funny because the John Smith character in the games does not become the Albino, they are two different [people], but we wanted to merge them for this, for this incarnation because we felt it would still feel organic."

Elsewhere, I spoke to Zachary Quinto, the actor behind John Smith/The Albino in the film. Though he says the mid-credits scene was shot during the middle of production — he was fitted with a bald cap, as opposed to dying his hair blonde — he knew from the beginning that this was the ultimate trajectory for his character’s arc. "Who knows what that means?" he said. "We’ll see." 

We’ll have more on what the possibilities for a potential sequel are shortly, but in the meantime, "Hitman: Agent 47" is currently playing in theaters.

SEE ALSO: This is the best opening to a video game ever

Join the conversation about this story »

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The name of the ‘Star Wars’ squadron Oscar Isaac leads in 'The Force Awakens' has been revealed

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oscar isaac star wars

The "Star Wars" universe is full of squadrons. You’ve got Rogue Squadron, Gold Squadron, and my personal favorite, Nightmare Squadron (from one of the non-canon games). We already knew that "The Force Awakens" has Red and Blue Squadrons, but there’s a new kid on the playground, as Oscar Isaac’s character, Poe Dameron’s squad bears the badass name Black Squadron.

Just a warning, there may be potential SPOILERS beyond this point. Tread lightly.

Making Star Wars has a few sparse details about the new addition to the franchise, Poe Dameron. Though there’s nothing earthshaking, they do restate what we all suspect, that he turns out to be a natural leader. That’s the impression most of us already had after all the photos and trailers we’ve seen—he just looks very heroic—but they add that by the end of the movie he’ll be the lead of the cadre of X-Wing Fighters named Black Squadron.

If you’ve been keeping an eye on all things "The Force Awakens," this moniker makes a great deal of sense. Back during principal photography, set photos started hitting the airwaves showing off a sexy new black X-Wing. Those were followed by leaked promotional images of a LEGO set showing off the same ominous looking craft, as well as more images, including one of Poe Dameron standing in front of the new fighter.

x wingInitially we weren’t sure if this new X-Wing, or X-Wings—we also weren’t sure if there was more than one—were on the side of good or evil. To be fair, we still don’t know the score on either count. We’ve heard that, at some point, Poe steals a ship to make an escape, and that could very easily be this craft (in Star Wars lore, the Rebel Alliance stole the X-Wings from the Empire in the first place). And perhaps Black Squadron is a new designation, and the name derives from their leader’s ship.

This isn’t the first time we’ve head the name "Black Squadron" used in the Star Wars lexicon. The name also refers to an elite group of TIE Fighter pilots under the command of Darth Vader in "A New Hope." They’re stationed on the Death Star during the Battle of Yavin, and you may recall Vader being referred to as "Black Leader" in the midst of the squabble. During the conflict, Grand Moff Tarkin didn’t take the Rebel threat seriously, and so Black Squadron was the only one to actually deploy and they were seriously outnumbered.

We’re curious to see how this name makes the leap from one side to another, or if it’s even mentioned at all. Maybe it’s just an obvious, cool sounding name with no greater ties. It wouldn’t be the first time "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" has used something from another source, after all, the title is the same as a 2006 fan film. This, however, is at least canon (it was in one of the movies, it’s canon), so it will be interesting to see.

We’ll find out one way or another when "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" hits theaters December 18.

SEE ALSO: Here's how the "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" logo looks in other countries

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27 movies you have to see this fall

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With summer coming to a close, it's time for all the superhero movies to exit the multiplexes and the more serious fare to enter.

From book adaptations and Matt Damon being left on Mars, to two movies about Steve Jobs, here are 27 titles you shouldn’t miss this fall.

SEE ALSO: Meet the new Hollywood — 30 stars under 30 whose careers are blowing up

“Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine”

Release Date: September 4

Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney follows up his film on Scientology, “Going Clear,” with a look at one of the 21st century’s most important figures, Steve Jobs. In typical Gibney fashion, we get a warts-and-all look at the man, which will be eye-opening for some and disturbing for Apple fanatics.



“Dragon Blade”

Release Date: September 4

Already a box-office sensation in its native China, this action-packed epic set in 48 BC China — starring Jackie Chan, John Cusack, and Adrien Brody — is now headed to the US. In the film, Huo An (Chan) teams with a defector of the Roman army (Cusack) to take on the corrupt Roman leader Tiberius (Brody).



“The Visit”

Release Date: September 11

M. Knight Shyamalan ("Sixth Sense") directs his first feature film since the box-office disappointment of 2013's “After Earth.” In this spooky thriller he teams with the producer behind "Paranormal Activity" and "Insidious" to create a mockumentary-styled thriller of two siblings visiting their grandparents.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Dr. Dre's alleged assault on a woman was in the 'Straight Outta Compton' script but it got cut

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Dr Dre Kevin Winter

"Straight Outta Compton," the biopic on rap group N.W.A., has received critical acclaim and broken records at the box office during its opening weekend. But there's a glaring omission from the movie that has led to some serious criticism of the film.

One of the most infamous moments in N.W.A. lore was Dr. Dre allegedly physically assaulting female hip-hop journalist Denise “Dee” Barnes.

In 1991, Barnes claims she was viciously beaten by then-N.W.A. rapper Dr. Dre on the floor of the woman's bathroom of the Po Na Na Souk nightclub in Los Angeles.

Barnes says Dre was provoked by a recent segment which aired on her FOX show "Pump It Up!" in which Ice Cube, who had just left the group, trashed his former colleagues.

According to the LA Times, a version of the incident was included in an early draft of the screenplay for "Straight Outta Compton." Corey Hawkins Straight Outta Compton Jaimie TruebloodHere’s a description of the scene from the Times piece:

In the scene, the fictional Dre, “eyes glazed, drunk, with an edge of nastiness, contempt” (per noted from the script) spots Barnes at the party and approaches her.

“Saw that [expletive] you did with Cube. Really had you under his spell, huh? Ate up everything he said. Let him diss us. Sell us out.”

“I just let him tell his story,” Barnes’ character retorts, “That’s what I do. It’s my job.”

“I thought we were cool, you and me,” Dre fires back. “But you don’t give a [expletive]. You just wanna laugh at N.W.A, make us all look like fools.”

The conversation escalates, Barnes throws her drink in Dre’s face before he attacks her “flinging her around like a rag-doll, while she screams, cries, begs for him to stop.”

This is one of numerous scenes that were never shot. Others included Dre being shot four times in the leg, his house catching on fire during a wild party, and a flashback of his younger brother in the fight that ended his life.

At a public Q&A, the film’s director F. Gary Gray addressed the omission of the Dee Barnes incident saying, “We couldn’t fit everything into the movie,” saying he chose stories that better “served the narrative.”

Barnes wrote about the incident not being in the movie for Gawker recently:

Dee Barnes“[My attack] isn’t depicted in 'Straight Outta Compton,' but I don’t think it should have been, either,” she wrote. “The truth is too ugly for a general audience. But what should have been addressed is that it occurred." 

Barnes sued Dre for damages and the two settled out of court

This is not the only incident. Dre’s former fiancée Michel’le told Vlad TV that he physically abused her, even “shooting at” her during an argument.

In a story for Rolling Stone recently, Dre admitted to being violent towards women in the past.

dr dre beats“I made some f------ horrible mistakes in my life,” he said.

“I was young, f------ stupid. I would say all the allegations aren't true — some of them are.

“Those are some of the things that I would like to take back. It was really f------ up.

“But I paid for those mistakes, and there's no way in hell that I will ever make another mistake like that again."

SEE ALSO: Here's the "Straight Outta Compton" casting call that everybody thought was racist

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Suge Knight isn't able to see 'Straight Outta Compton' from jail, but here's why his lawyer says he won't like it

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Following the huge box office for the N.W.A. biopic ‘Straight Outta Compton’ over the weekend, there’s a lot of handshakes and back slapping going around Hollywood. But one person that likely isn’t that happy is Suge Knight.

The Wrap talked to the former rap mogul’s lawyer, Thomas Mesereau, who is representing Knight for allegedly running over and killing one man, injuring another, with his truck following a promotional shoot for “Straight Outta Compton” on January 29.

According to Mesereau, Knight wouldn’t like the movie because “it is exaggerated and silly and ridiculous,” The Wrap reports.

In the film, Knight is portrayed as a bodyguard who is looking to get into the music business and does so through tactics of intimidation and violence.

In one scene, Knight looks on as a man only wearing his underwear is terrorized by a pit bull in the offices of Knight's Death Row label. In another scene, when Knight sees someone has parked in his parking space, he gets out of his car and beats up the man.

“A lot of the media does not realize how many good things he did for people, particularly in his community,” Mesereau said of his client to The Wrap. “He financed athletic facilities in schools, he gave money to the homeless, money to people in need. He tried to arrange truces on the streets so people weren’t killed.”

Knight is currently being held at the Twin Towers Correctional Facility in LA on $10 million bail. According to Mesereau, Knight is unable to see the film.

SEE ALSO: "Straight Outta Compton" is gunning for an Oscar nomination — but it's not going to be easy

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How Jennifer Lawrence went from obscurity to the highest-paid actress in the world in 5 years

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Jennifer Lawrence Jennifer Lawrence was just named Forbes' highest-paid actress of 2015.

At just 25, Lawrence raked in $52 million this year alone.

But the Oscar-winning "Hunger Games" actress has come a long way since her humble beginnings in Louisville, Kentucky. 

Let's look back at her meteoric rise from farm girl to Hollywood's top earner.

Additional reporting by Melia Robinson.

SEE ALSO: 27 movies you have to see this fall

Lawrence was born August 15, 1990 — the first girl to be born on her dad's side of the family in 50 years.

Her family's day camp in Louisville, Kentucky.

Source: Rolling Stone



She grew up on a horse farm in Louisville, Kentucky, where her parents raised unbroken stallions because they were cheaper.

Sources: Rolling Stone, "The Late Show with David Letterman"



Her family didn't believe in "seeking medical treatment." She was hit by a car at 18 months and deformed her tailbone after being thrown from a horse. Neither incident warranted a trip to the doctor's office.

Sources: "Jimmy Kimmel Live,""Late Show with David Letterman"



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Ice Cube​'s real-life son plays him in 'Straight Outta Compton'​ — but the 2-year audition process wasn't easy

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Oshea Jackson Jaimie Trueblood.JPGO'Shea Jackson Jr., 24, is receiving rave reviews for playing Ice Cube in the hit N.W.A. biopic "Straight Outta Compton."

You could say he was born to play the role, as he's the real-life son of N.W.A. member Ice Cube, whose real name is O’Shea Jackson. But the part wasn’t handed to him.

ice cube o'shea jacksonTo earn the role, Jackson went through a grueling two-year process that included constant auditions and working with three different acting coaches.

"It's all these things to build confidence within me," Jackson told Entertainment Weekly about the process.

And though Cube was supportive of this son's growth, as a producer on the film he had to find the best actor to play himself.

"If we found a better Cube, then we had to go with the best man for the job," Cube told People. "That's how acting and movie shoots work. So I couldn't give it to him — and I wouldn't if I could because that's easy."

Actors and rappers also auditioned for the role, with a short list coming down to Jackson and two others gunning for the Cube role, Jackson told People.

But the final decision didn’t come down to who had the look or tone of Cube, but to who had the best rapping skills.Straight Outta Compton Jaimie Trueblood Oscar finalThe actors chosen to play the members of N.W.A. had to also be able to convincingly perform the classic songs from the group's debut album, "Straight Outta Compton." There would be no dubbing of voices for the songs featured in the movie — they would have to rap just like the legends they were portraying.

It was Jackson's prowess on the mic that inevitably landed him the role.

Ultimately, Jackson perfectly portrayed his dad in the movie. Many who have seen the film have been blown away by Jackson's performance. Cinema Blend writes that it's Jackson's "uncanny ability to embody his father, from his presence to his quirks, that gives the film its oomph."

Ice Cube O'Shea Jackson Jr Straight Outta ComptonAfter viewing the final cut of the film, Jackson got his father's seal of approval.

"As a parent, you always are proud of the moments when you kid steps up," Cube told Tribune News. "So I'm forever grateful that he stepped up to this challenge and portrayed me in the movie. I couldn't picture anyone else doing it. I was totally engulfed watching him perform. See, I've never been to an N.W.A. concert — I've done an N.W.A. concert, but never had the chance as an audience member to experience it, and I was like, 'Pretty powerful!'"

O'Shea Jackson Jr. is one of Ice Cube's four children with Kimberly Woodruff, the rapper's wife of 23 years.

Here's the family at the premiere of "Barbershop 2: Back in Business" in 2004:

Ice Cube Oshea jackson wife sonAnd here's the trio at the Los Angeles premiere of "Straight Outta Compton" on August 10:

ice cube o'shea jackson straight outta comptonSince its release last Friday, "Straight Outta Compton" has raked in a whopping $67.7 million at the box office.

SEE ALSO: A woman who was allegedly assaulted by Dr. Dre says "Straight Outta Compton" left out an 'ugly' truth

MORE: Comedian Michael Blackson reveals his $14 'Next Friday' residual check — and now he wants a piece of Ice Cube's 'Straight Outta Compton' earnings

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The 10 biggest winners and losers of the summer movie season

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Before we say goodbye to summer, it’s time to look back on how the movie business did the last few months.

Overall, Hollywood had an incredible summer at the multiplex with numerous record-breaking releases — incidentally coming from the same studio. But there were also some major disappointments.

So let’s look back at the movies, people, and studios that make up the winners and losers of this summer movie season.

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WINNER: Universal

No one saw this coming. Without a superhero franchise on its summer slate, few could imagine Universal would be at the top of the heap at the global box office.

But it turned out what the studio had this summer were titles that had stories with built-in mass appeal. Thanks to the sensational performances of "Furious 7,""Jurassic World," and "Minions," to name a few, Universal has made more than $5.52 billion at the worldwide box office, making it the highest grossing year ever for a studio.



LOSER: Josh Trank

It's hard to find anyone in Hollywood who lost more over the summer than filmmaker Josh Trank. At one time he was the new "it" director, with the "Fantastic Four" reboot by 20th Century Fox coming out and prepping to direct one of the "Star Wars" anthology projects.

But following reports of Trank’s alleged erratic behavior on the set of "Four," Trank left the "Star Wars" film. Now with "Four" bombing at the box office and Trank’s Twitter response to the critics' reaction, the 31-year-old is at a crossroads.



WINNER: "Straight Outta Compton"

After years of teasing, a biopic on the legendary rap group N.W.A was finally released over the summer, and it turned out a few people wanted to see it.

Actually, a lot of people. The film had the highest-grossing opening weekend for a music biopic of all time with $60 million. And yes, it's another successful release by Universal this summer.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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