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Christopher Nolan compared casting Harry Styles in 'Dunkirk' to Heath Ledger as The Joker

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dunkirk styles Warner Bros final

The latest movie by Christopher Nolan features stars like Tom Hardy, Oscar-winner Mark Rylance, and Cillian Murphy — but when you leave the theater after watching “Dunkirk” (opens July 21), one of the performances you’ll likely remember most will be the acting debut of pop star Harry Styles.

Formerly part of One Direction, Styles has branched off into being one of the biggest solo performers in the world, and now he’s showing he has acting chops as well.

“Dunkirk” is an intimately told look at the Allied evacuation of the beaches of Dunkirk, France during World War II. Told in three parts — soldiers on the beach, British pilots fighting off German bombers in the sky, and civilian boats on the water en route to Dunkirk to help with the evacuation — Nolan explores the journey of a handful of men involved in all three instances.

Styles plays Alex, one of the soldiers trying to get off the beach, and it’s not easy. Escaping out of sinking destroyers and avoiding being shot at by oncoming Germans soldiers on foot advancing towards the beach, Styles delivers a riveting performance. And for a movie limited with dialogue, he gets a large part of the lines that are spoken.

Harry Styles Dunkirk Warner Bros finalNolan is no stranger to doing unique casting. He cast Robin Williams in one of the actor’s rare turns as a bad guy in 2002’s “Insomnia,” had David Bowie play Nikola Tesla in 2006’s “The Prestige,” and then there was the shocking choice of choosing Heath Ledger to play The Joker in 2008’s “The Dark Knight,” which went on to earn Ledger a posthumous Oscar win for best supporting actor.

Nolan sees similarities to those castings and going with Styles.

“Ever since I cast Heath Ledger as The Joker and raised all kinds of eyebrows, I've recognized that this is my responsibility and I really have to spot the potential in somebody who hasn't done a particular thing before,” Nolan told Business Insider. “Because whether you're taking about Harry Styles or Mark Rylance you don't really want to cast them in a position where they are doing something they've already done. You want to give the audience something different. So you're looking at their talent and how that can be used.”

And there was little preference given to Styles in the casting process (though Nolan has admitted he wasn’t aware how famous Styles really is). 

dunkirk harry styles warner bros“The truth is, Harry auditioned for our casting director, he sent the tape along. The casting director rightly pointed out how good it was. We threw him into the mix with many, many other young men and he earned his seat at the table over a series of very hard-fought auditions,” Nolan said.

Styles definitely holds his own on screen, proving he can move us with his dramatic acting as much as his comedy, which he showed off earlier this year on “Saturday Night Live.”

Nolan can’t wait for audiences to see this side of Styles.

“I’m very excited for people to see what he has done in the film,” Nolan said. “I think it’s truthful and it’s a very tough role he’s playing, too.”

Watch Styles in the “Dunkirk” trailer below:

SEE ALSO: Christopher Nolan explains the biggest challenge in making his latest movie "Dunkirk" into an "intimate epic"

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'Spider-Man' stars Zendaya and Tom Holland shut down reports that they're dating in real life

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tom holland zendayaThe INSIDER Summary:

  • Tom Holland and Zendaya are costars in "Spider-Man: Homecoming."
  • People published a report that the two were dating in real life.
  • They both took to social media to shut the rumors down.
  • The two are just friends.


Zendaya and Tom Holland can't seem to escape the romance rumors, but these "Spider-Man: Homecoming" stars are not dating.

People magazine published a report Thursday evening citing a source who told them that the potential couple started dating while filming the newest Marvel movie. 

“They started seeing each other while they were filming 'Spider-Man,'" said the magazine's source."They’ve been super careful to keep it private and out of the public eye but they’ve gone on vacations with each other and try and spend as much time as possible with one another."

Zendaya, 20, who plays Michelle in the movie, responded to the rumors on Twitter and shut them down.

"Wait wait...my favorite is when it says we go on vacations together HA! I haven't been on vacation in years! hbu [how about you] @TomHolland1996?" she tweeted.

Holland, 21, who plays Spider-Man, responded with some laughing emojis and joked, "Does the press tour count?" 

Zendaya's final tweet on the romance rumors was, "I'm done," with a crying/laughing emoji and raised hand emoji. 

That settles the question of romantic involvement, but it won't stop people from wanting it to be true. 

(Note: Minor spoilers for "Spider-Man: Homecoming" are below.) 

It's unclear whether the two characters will become romantically involved in future movies. Zendaya's character, Michelle, revealed at the end of the film that her nickname is MJ. The moniker is used as the nickname for Mary Jane, Spider-Man's love interest in the comics, so it could happen. Though, it is safe to say after their responses that these two are just friends in real life. 

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A 'Black Panther' villain was cleverly changed in the movie to avoid racial stereotypes

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chadwick boseman black panther

The INSIDER Summary:

  • Marvel's "Black Panther" movie changed one of its villains from the comics.
  • Originally, M'Baku was a member of a cult that killed white gorillas and wore their skin to become more powerful.
  • The movie dropped an insensitive nickname, changed the costume, and made his backstory more relevant to the movie.


The "Black Panther" universe has many villains. And for 2018's movie adaptation of the comics, Marvel wanted to include M’Baku as one of them.

But Marvel had one major problem: M'Baku was also named "Man-Ape," and he was a member of the White Gorilla Cult that killed white gorillas, ate their flesh and bathed in their blood, and wore their skin to get superpowers.

"Having a black character dress up as an ape, I think there’s a lot of racial implications that don’t sit well, if done wrong,"executive producer Nate Moore told Entertainment Weekly.

Comparing black men to apes is a longstanding racist stereotype, and the whole character raised a bunch of red flags for Marvel executives. They decided to handle it by dropping the nickname "Man-Ape" and just sticking with "M'Baku" as the character's name. The producers also dropped his ape-like mask, which often made him literally look like an ape in the comics. The rest of his costume is more like armor with fur spurting out from underneath, accented with gorilla-inspired details.

black panther m'baku villain

As far as the character's backstory, Marvel did stick to the idea that the White Gorilla Cult worshipped gorillas as gods. M'Baku (played by "Person of Interest" actor Winston Duke) is essentially the head of a religious minority in Wakanda, where Black Panther AKA T'Challa (played by Chadwick Boseman) is king.

"The idea that they worship the gorilla gods is interesting because it’s a movie about the Black Panther who, himself, is a sort of deity in his own right," Moore said.

"Black Panther" becomes about these rival political and religious factions within Wakanda, each with different ideas about how the country should be run. The White Gorilla Cult wants the country to be isolated, while T'Challa wants it to stay a member of the United Nations.

"In this movie, it’s a little tricky to define who’s a [good guy]," director Ryan Coogler told Entertainment Weekly. "The film very much plays with those concepts, looking at conflicts and different motivations, and who’s with who. M’Baku is a really interesting character, and I’m excited for people to get to see him." 

SEE ALSO: Marvel just dropped the first trailer for 'Black Panther'

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Martin Scorsese will team up with Leonardo DiCaprio again for a new movie — here's what we know

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Martin Scorsese Leonardo DiCaprio Paramount final

Marty and Leo are getting back together. 

After Martin Scorsese teams with his long-time collaborator Robert De Niro on the anticipated Netflix movie, "The Irishman," he'll switch gears and join up with another actor he can't help but work with: Leonardo DiCaprio. 

Variety reports that the two Oscar winners are developing an adaptation of the true-crime book, "Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI." Scorsese plans to make that his next project after he's done with "The Irishman."

Written by "The Lost City of Z" author, David Grann, "Killers of the Flower Moon" is set in the 1920s and focuses on a string of murders done in Oklahoma after oil is discovered beneath the land of the Native American tribe, Osage Nation. It was one of the FBI's first major homicide investigations.

The rights to the book were bought for $5 million, according to the trade. Veteran Oscar-winning screenwriter Eric Roth ("Forrest Gump,""The Insider") is drafting the script. 

Scorsese and DiCaprio have been eyeing the project for months, but don't expect seeing it on screen anytime soon. Scorsese still has to shoot "The Irishman," which he's eyeing for September.

There's no word yet who DiCaprio will play in the movie.

This will be the sixth time DiCaprio will star in a Scorsese movie. The most recent was 2013's "The Wolf of Wall Street."

SEE ALSO: Christopher Nolan compared casting Harry Styles in "Dunkirk" to Heath Ledger as The Joker

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'The Big Sick' is a perfect date night flick — and the best interracial love story in movie history

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the big sick movie kumail nanjiani zoe kazan

The INSIDER Summary:

  • "The Big Sick" is one of the best depictions of an interracial relationship in movie history.
  • It stars "Silicon Valley" star Kumail Nanjiani and is about his own life.
  • The key to its success is accurately portraying Nanjiani's Pakistani-Muslim heritage.
  • It communicates ideas that are hard to understand, like arranged marriage, without oversimplifying.


It's rare for a movie to feature an interracial relationship, and even rarer for it to be handled with the depth and nuance of "The Big Sick."

The movie maneuvers enormous cultural gulfs. It's based on the true life story of screenwriter and star Kumail Nanjiani, a Pakistani-American comedian best known for playing Dinesh Chugtai on "Silicon Valley."Kumail falls in love with Emily Gordon (played by Zoe Kazan in the movie), and has to figure out how to explain to his parents that he's not going to have an arranged marriage with another Pakistani Muslim woman. At the same time, he has to take care of Emily once she falls into a coma and win over her white, American parents, who are suspicious of his background.

It's a story that anyone who's been in an interracial relationship, or any relationship between two people with families of deep cultural differences, will recognize.

The movie is the best portrayal of a cross-cultural relationship in movie history, and the best date night movie you'll see this year.

It's the funniest drama about an interracial relationship that you'll ever see.

By some miracle, "The Big Sick" doesn't just handle that deeply emotional dynamic with grace — it's hilarious.

"When I read the script, I felt like I knew what kind of movie they wanted to make," director Michael Showalter told INSIDER. "They weren’t trying to make a big broad comedy, they were trying to do something more serio-comic."

the big sick showalter

"The Big Sick" is based on Nanjiani's life story, so he had only one shot to get the movie right. He put the project in Showalter's hands, because they both had the same idea about how the story should be told, and they've had a really good working relationship. The two also worked together on the 2015 film "Hello, My Name is Doris."

"Mike had that mix of really funny, alt-comedy weirdness with 'Stella' and 'Wet Hot American Summer,'" Nanjiani said. "But also he’s a very emotional guy, and 'Hello My Name is Doris' is a very emotional movie. It’s very funny and wacky but it also feels very grounded and real."

"The Big Sick" is a master class in portraying under-recognized cultures on screen.

Like "Master of None,""The Big Sick" is excellent at communicating cultural traditions that are hard to understand in different contexts.

The most prominent example in the movie is arranged marriage.

"We wanted to show that it’s not an outdated practice," Nanjiani said. "That it works for a lot of people, that there’s a system in place for it, and there’s a reason it works."

kumail nanjiani family dinner scene

Nanjiani's parents and brother, for example, are in arranged marriages. Showalter and Nanjiani wanted to show that arranged marriage might seem, to an outsider, as an outdated cultural institution, but it very much has a place in the modern world.

"We really wanted to show the actual nitty-gritty of how it works," Nanjiani said. "That it worked for my parents, that it worked for my brother in the movie. We wanted to show arranged marriage as a viable option. My character doesn't choose it, but other people do and it can work for them."

The genius of the movie is that it doesn't treat arranged marriage as a mere anthropology lesson. Kumail's parents' insistence on arranged marriage, and Emily's alienated understanding of it, are central to the plot.

The balance is what makes the movie work.

For Nanjiani's character, he has to figure out how to keep his family close even while heading away from "1,400 years of culture." 

Kumail's family members aren't depicted as backwards people. They're Pakistani immigrants, they're religiously observant Muslims, and they're living in the United States. All of that is coherent to real life, and in "The Big Sick." And because they're all reasonable people, it doesn't make sense for Kumail to reject them out of hand and elope with Emily.

The movie even sympathizes with the Pakistani women Kumail's parents arrange to date him. Kumail was already in a relationship with Emily when he met with them, and just agreed to meet so he didn't have to explain his white girlfriend to his parents. He dashed their hopes and wasted their time.

"It was very important to me early on that the movie not [depict] Kumail’s family, and the women that he’s encountering, with a really broad, two-dimensional brush that sort of paints the Pakistani-Muslim side [as] stuck in the mud," Showalter said.

kumail nanjiani ray romano holly hunter the big sick

That's the balance that needs to be established when you have a story like this. Emily's American culture needs to be seen as legitimate and reasonable, which is something most of the movie's audience will already assume. And Kumail's family's Pakistani-Muslim family, with their arranged marriages, also need to be seen as legitimate and reasonable. Kumail, like anyone, needs his family, but he's also in love with someone they view as unacceptable.

So Kumail needs to choose between them — America or Pakistan, "love marriage" or "arranged marriage"— and the viewer knows the stakes are real.

"He says, 'I can’t lose my family,' and you understand that he’s not joking," Showalter said. "He really means that. He is choosing between the life that he’s sort of pursuing, of being a comedian and marrying for love."

The cultural accuracy makes "The Big Sick" something special.

Another way "The Big Sick" manages its extraordinary empathy is with its fidelity to Nanjiani's heritage. He doesn't water down arranged marriage, and he doesn't soften anything else, either.

The movie's communication breakdowns happen on purpose. In many cases, people are literally speaking different languages.

the big sick kumail nanjiani biryani scene

"We used language in a very specific way, because the movie is about people trying to communicate and connect and the things that get in the way," Nanjiani said. "So we wanted to throw in Urdu words and not explain them, because that’s how my family talks."

Nanjiani managed to do that in a way that allows the characters to stay true to themselves, but also makes sure that the audience knows what's happening all the time. Near the end of the movie, Nanjiani's dad gives him an unexpected visit and drops off some biryani.

"He’s not like, 'Here’s a fragrant rice dish.' He goes, 'This is biryani,'" Nanjiani said. "A lot of people don’t understand what he’s saying, but they know this is some food, and he clearly loves it, and I understand the purpose of it in this moment. It’s sort of an olive branch."

Elsewhere in the movie, Nanjiani exploits these communication gaps for humor. In a hospital scene where Emily is in her coma and Nanjiani eats with her parents, they're suspicious of him because he's a brown-skinned Muslim. There's a hilarious scene where Emily's dad (played by Ray Romano) asks Kumail about "his stance" on 9/11.

"It was a tragedy," Kumail says. "I mean, we lost 19 of our best guys."

Nanjiani's ability to tell this kind of story tells you everything you need to know about his talent.

Telling the story of "The Big Sick" wasn't easy. When you're telling the story of your life, it's hard to think about how to do it in a way that makes perfect sense to the millions of people who might see it in a movie theater. 

"It’s a whole box of things that this comes with that other people don’t have access to," Nanjiani said. "It’s much harder to really get cultural context when you’re not from that culture. So that’s always what’s tricky and that’s one of the challenges of our movies. We have to convey a lot of context in not a lot of time."

kumail nanjiani big sick standup

Showalter described the first draft of the script as a sprawling screenplay that "needed a lot of shaping." He figured out how to tell it in the best way. The movie is two-hours-and-four minutes long — long for a comedy — but it's still efficiently told.

Working on the movie taught Showalter just how much Nanjiani went through to be where he is now. Nanjiani immigrated to the United States at a young age, didn't always have the support of his family when he dated a white woman and became a comedian, and had to deal with Islamophobic and racist hecklers at stand-up sets. Now he's one of the most important comedians working today, and has a major role in an HBO comedy.

"I don’t think about it very much, because he’s done so well and he’s made it look so effortless," Showalter said. "He’s really blazed a trail for himself."

Join the conversation about this story »

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'The Big Sick' is the best romantic comedy in recent memory — and you can see it now

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It’s hard to believe, but it’s been 10 years since Judd Apatow’s “Knocked Up,” which came out June 1, 2007.

“Knocked Up” paved the way for explicit comedy that tells emotional human stories. It's a laugh-out-loud vulgar comedy, but at its heart it's a love story about growing up.

Director, writer, and producer Judd Apatow started a trend with the movie (one that technically started with “The 40-Year Old Virgin" a few years prior), and his style paved the way for many comedies over the past decade, from “Forgetting Sarah Marshall" to “Bridesmaids."

“The Big Sick" premiered to critical acclaim at Sundance Film Festival back in January. It had a limited release on June 23, and went wide on Friday. In the weeks since its limited release, it became one of the highest-grossing indie films of the year. 

It helped to have Apatow involved in “The Big Sick"— he was a producer, and his touch is evident. The script, based on a true story that happened to stand-up comic and “Silicon Valley" star Kumail Nanjiani and his wife, producer/writer Emily Gordon, was written by the husband-wife duo. Michael Showalter of “Wet Hot American Summer” fame directed the movie, and it was released by Amazon Studios/Lionsgate.

The premise feels so ripped from a soap opera that it’s hard to believe it actually happened to Nanjiani and Gordon. In the film, Kumail (played by Nanjiani) meets Emily (Zoe Kazan) when she heckles him at a comedy club in Chicago. They go home together, and despite the fact that Kumail knows he has to marry a Muslim woman (he keeps a box of photos of the women his mom introduces him to) or he will shame the family, he continues to date her — without telling Emily about any of it. Things go very well for Kumail and Emily at first.

The dialogue and both leads accurately capture the awkward and magical progression of a blossoming relationship. There is a scene where Emily tries to leave Kumail's apartment in the middle of the night to poop somewhere else, which goes in a sweet direction instead of the expected gross one. But eventually Emily finds out about the women in the box and they break up. 

Then Kumail gets a call and finds out Emily is in the hospital. He visits her, and a doctor tells him that they need to put her in a medically-induced coma. While Emily is in a coma, Kumail sticks around despite their bitter break-up, which at first annoys Emily’s parents, played by the superbly cast and incredibly funny Holly Hunter and Ray Romano.

Better than any other movie in recent memory, “The Big Sick“ finds the light in the dark. A movie about a girlfriend in a coma — and a man risking cutting ties from his family to be with her — brought some of the biggest laughs I’ve had in years. The longer Kumail sticks around at the hospital, the more Emily’s parents warm up to him. One night, Emily’s parents attend one of his stand-up shows, and Emily’s mom defends Kumail against a heckler who tells him to “go back to ISIS." In another scene later on in the film, Emily’s dad opens up to Kumail about a time that he cheated on his wife. It’s heartbreaking content, but the chemistry and the delivery from Nanjiani and Romano (who is seriously peaking right now) make it one of the sweetest and funniest parts of the movie.

Ten years ago, "Knocked Up" had similar moments, but not on as dramatic a scale. "Knocked Up" also has a hundred dick jokes to "The Big Sick's" two or three (maybe less). That's because "The Big Sick" was written completely from the heart. Nanjiani and Gordon knew they had a story worth sharing, and they didn't sacrifice any time just for the laughs. All of the jokes are natural, and there aren't any scenes (besides scenes that take place at a comedy club) that were written to just be joke-delivery scenes.

This tragic story with a happy ending and a lot of happy moments throughout the journey is one of the best romantic comedies in years. And, just like "Knocked Up" shaped the next wave of comedies, "The Big Sick" will hopefully do so as well — which is a good sign for the future of rom coms, and Nanjiani and Gordon's careers as a screenwriting duo. 

SEE ALSO: The 10 biggest box-office bombs of 2017 so far

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'War for the Planet of the Apes' wins a quiet weekend at the box office

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The summer movie season continues to trudge along to the finish line. With every weekend that has a monster hit like "Wonder Woman" or "Spider-Man: Homecoming," there's another one close behind it with so-so box office returns. And we've hit another slow spot this weekend.

"War for the Planet of the Apes," the third movie in 20th Century Fox's reboot of "Planet of the Apes," won the weekend with an estimated $56 million, according to Exhibitor Relations. That's lower than most industry projections.

Though the movie is a critical darling with a 94% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it's serious tone of the battle between apes and man seems to not be attracting the same audience that came to the franchise's previous movie, "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes," which took in $72.6 million its opening weekend in 2014.

There could be some franchise fatigue to blame for the opening "War" had. Though all three movies have been praised for its strong storytelling and incredible motion-capture technology.

The Big Sick Amazon LionsgateComing in second place is "Spider-Man: Homecoming," with $45 million. The movie has now earned over $200 million total domestically.

The feel good story at the box office over the weekend is the performance by the Amazon Studios/Lionsgate release, "The Big Sick." The Judd Apatow-produced comedy starring Kumali Nanjiani ("Silicon Valley"), who co-wrote the screenplay with his girlfriend Emily V. Gordon), followed-up its impressive limited release run with a $3.6 million take in the first weekend of its wide release. It now has over $6 million total in its theatrical run.

SEE ALSO: Christopher Nolan compared casting Harry Styles in "Dunkirk" to Heath Ledger as The Joker

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Disney just gave fans a sneak peek of 10 new blockbusters — here's what they got to see

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No movie studio has a more envious slate coming in the next few years than Disney. Saturday, at the studio's live-action movie presentation at fan event D23 Expo, the company showed a photo outlining its movie schedule for the next two years, and to say it's strong is an understatement.

Disney is set to release 21 movies across its Marvel, Pixar, Lucasfilm animated, and live-action brands from now through 2019. And, while Walt Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn didn't show off all of their new movies Saturday, he did show off footage and reveal details about many of the movies that are on their way. 

Keep reading to see the movies and reveals fans were raving about Saturday at D23 Expo.

President of Walt Disney Pictures productions Sean Bailey revealed next year's live-action adaptation of "A Wrinkle in Time."

The movie is based on the book by Madeleine L’Engle which takes readers across dimensions of time and space. 

 



The film has an all-star cast in Oprah, Chris Pine, Reese Witherspoon, and Mindy Kaling who were all on stage with director Ava DuVernay.

The film follows a bright middle school student Meg Murry (Storm Reid) who is struggling to fit in. After her father (Chris Pine) disappears she meets three celestial guides — Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey), Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon) and Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling) — who will help her find her father.  



"A Wrinkle in Time" will be in theaters March 9, 2018.

They showed off the first teaser poster and trailer, which you can check out here.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Disney announced its cast for the live-action 'Aladdin' — and some people are furious

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The INSIDER Summary:

  • Disney announced its new cast for the live-action "Aladdin" at its D23 Expo on Saturday.
  • Mena Massoud will play Aladdin, Naomi Scott was cast as Jasmine, and Will Smith was cast as Genie.
  • Some people were furious over the casting.
  • It started a larger conversation about representation in Hollywood.


On Saturday at Disney's D23 Expo, the official cast of the live-action remake of "Aladdin" was officially announced.

Mena Massoud will play Aladdin, Naomi Scott was cast as Jasmine, and Will Smith will also star as the Genie.

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jasmine aladdin naomi scott

will smith genie aladdin

The news came after earlier reports that Disney was having a hard time casting for the part of Aladdin. According to The Hollywood Reporter, sources suggested that there was an issue finding someone who was right for the role and could sing, dance, and act. Many fans were flummoxed that Disney couldn't find a star

But instead of being thrilled that Disney had selected its cast, many people on Twitter were upset by the choices.

People were especially critical of Scott as Jasmine. Though some fans called her "white," others pointed out that the 24-year-old actress is of Indian as well as British descent.

It sparked a larger, complicated conversation on Hollywood casting, with some people taking sides over whether or not the "Aladdin" actors should be of Indian or Middle Eastern descent. The point was made that technically, though the Disney animated version of Aladdin pulls from Middle Eastern and Indian iconography and geography, the original story originated from China.

Some people were also unsure of Will Smith as Genie, a role that was famously held by Robin Williams in the animated classic.

Still, not everyone was upset by the casting. Some people remained hopeful about the new remake.

"Aladdin" is not the only live-action movie that Disney has made. Previously, Disney has made live-action versions of both "The Jungle Book" as well as "Beauty and the Beast,"which starred Emma Watson as Belle.

It also has a live-action "Lion King" and "Mulan" slated in the coming few years, and showed fans at D23 a preview of its upcoming movies, including "Mary Poppins,""A Wrinkle In Time," and behind-the-scenes footage from the upcoming "Star Wars" film.

You can see everything Disney announced through 2019 here.

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The director who took over 'Deadpool 2' talks about living up to the first movie's success

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Director David Leitch is known best right now for being half of the team that created the surprise hit, "John Wick," but expect to hear his name more for the next year.

The stuntman-turned-director has two major movies coming up: first is the Charlize Theron Cold War spy movie, "Atomic Blonde" (opening July 28), then he'll follow that with the highly anticipated "Deadpool 2," the sequel to the box office hit from 2016 that starred Ryan Reynolds playing the unique Marvel character.

Leitch took on the second Deadpool movie after the director of the original, Tim Miller, left last October over "creative differences." Currently shooting "Deadpool 2," Leitch said he's trying to keep focused and not get caught up in the hype around the project.

"You can't deny the expectation," Leitch told Business Insider, while doing press for the release of "Atomic Blonde," when asked if he feels any pressure to deliver as big or bigger than the first movie. "There's such an incredibly passionate following, which I'm grateful for to be involved in it. But at the end of the day, I've been working on films for 20 years, we're in the creative process right now and I'm just focused on that. It feels like we know what to deliver. Ryan knows Deadpool like the back of his hand and we're in a really good place."

David leitch matt Winkelmeyer GettyMiller's departure from the sequel was reportedly due to him not seeing eye-to-eye with Reynolds about the scope of the project. Miller wanted to go bigger with story and ideas while Reynolds, along with screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, wanted to stay close to the original's $60 million budget and have lots of raunchy material.

The original earned the biggest box office opening ever for an R-rated movie with $132.4 million and a worldwide box office total of $783.1 million. With Reynolds as the face of the franchise, the success or failure of the sequel is placed on his shoulders.

But that's what's impressed Leitch the most since coming on board, how connected Reynolds is to the demented persona of the "Merc With A Mouth."

"He was made for this role and the character is made for him," said Leitch of Reynolds as Deadpool. "They are one, let's say it that way."

"Deadpool 2" will open in theaters on June 1, 2018.

SEE ALSO: The best TV show of every year since 2000, according to critics

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The excellent new video game show on Netflix only exists because of a chance encounter

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The new Netflix show "Castlevania" is an unexpected hit. It's an animated show based on a game franchise that was most popular nearly 30 years ago. Moreover, it's a show based on a video game — and history is rife with examples of video games being horrifically adapted for TV and film.

Yet, against all odds, "Castlevania" is a surprisingly engaging, interesting, funny show.  It's got a sympathetic villain in Dracula, and a complex world in Wallachia. The art style is even pretty good!

Castlevania (Netflix)

All of this begs one question, of course: How in the world did Netflix manage to produce a good show based on a video game? 

The show's executive producer, Adi Shankar, has a lot of answers to that question. The show's creators are fans of the game series, he says, and this show was made "outside the system, so the rules weren't the same." 

That stuff helped make the show as good as it is, no doubt, but the actual meeting that spiraled into the show that is now "Castlevania" was far less exciting. Here's Shankar's description, from an interview late last week with Business Insider:

"I was made aware that ["Castlevania"] was even a possibility in a chance encounter. I had a meeting about something else. I was actually trying to help a couple friends out, internationally, to get them a job, and I wanted to vouch for them. And [the people I was meeting with] were like, 'Oh yeah we saw your Punisher film!' And I was like, 'Oh cool.' And I got made aware then that ["Castlevania"] was even possible. I wasn't even thinking Netflix at that point in time because I didn't really know where I stood. I didn't know what was possible."

And just like that, through a chance encounter, the first good video game adaptation in years was born.

Castlevania (Netflix)

If the meeting sounds uninteresting and common, that's because it is. Shankar summarized the meeting by telling us, "The story is just so not interesting because it's not an interesting story. I was like 'yeah,' and then other people were like 'yeah,' and then it just kinda happened." Not so exciting.

The result, of course, is something much more interesting — a nuanced, adult story based on a classic video game franchise.

And that result is the product of a process Shankar described as, "No handcuffs at all." Shankar and his team, including acclaimed writer Warren Ellis, were given complete creative control from the game's original maker, Konami. "What you saw was what we intended to make," Shankar said.

Netflix likes the show so much that it's already approved a second season with double the episode count — eight in total. It won't be up to chance this time.

SEE ALSO: Netflix somehow managed to make a great TV show based on a video game

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'Dunkirk' is a very different Christopher Nolan epic — and it's his best movie in years

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Dunkirk 3 Warner Bros final

Christopher Nolan has built his auteur rep with big concepts and complex stories. And though his latest movie "Dunkirk" is no small feat, it's unlike anything he's made yet in his career. 

Nolan delivers a war story filled with pulse-pounding thrills and emotionally powerful performances. The film shows off his mastery, but is also extremely intimate — despite being shot on 70mm with an IMAX camera.

To get your money’s worth, you should definitely find the largest screen near you to see its incredible photography, but the story itself is very simple and very sparse on dialogue.

The movie looks at the evacuation of Allied forces off the beach in Dunkirk, France during World War II. To tell that story, Nolan looks at the event from land, air, and sea. 

The land portion, titled "The Mole" (referring to the massive stone breakwater at Dunkirk), shows close to 400,000 British soldiers patiently waiting over a week for destroyers to come ashore and pick them all up. But like monsters coming from the sky, German bombers periodically show up and bomb the terrified soldiers on the beach. All they can do is duck and hope to survive.   

For "The Air" storyline, the British air force assigns three Spitfire aircraft to fly the one-hour journey to Dunkirk to try and fight off the bombers. Lastly in "The Sea," civilian boats from the UK travel the day's journey to Dunkirk to assist in the evacuation. 

Dunkirk 2 Warner Bros finalAll three stories have their own individual drama, but Nolan, along with his longtime editor Lee Smith, masterfully have them all converge by the end of the movie. It's a thrilling conclusion that only the refined skill and originality of the guy who made "Memento" can pull off. 

Much of the movie is told through the perspective of Tommy (newcomer Fionn Whitehead), who attempts numerous times to try to get off the beach, only to find his way back to it. Saying very little, we follow his movements with fellow solider Gibson (Aneurin Barnard) and later Alex (Harry Styles, in an impressive acting debut), who they save from a sinking destroyer that has been hit by a German bomb. 

Mark Rylance plays one of the civilian boat captains, Cillian Murphy is an unnamed solider Rylance's boat picks up on the way to Dunkirk, and Tom Hardy plays one of the Spitfire pilots, Farrier. Though Nolan gives Hardy only a handful of lines, it's also the hero role. Trust me, you'll be thinking about Hardy's performance long after you leave the theater. 

Though the obvious comparisons that come up when watching "Dunkirk" are past epics like the gritty "Saving Private Ryan" and "Atonement," which has the incredible five-minute single shot of the Allied forces at Dunkirk, I couldn't stop thinking about the little-seen 1975 D-Day movie "Overlord," by director Stuart Cooper. 

Perhaps the comparison comes because Cooper's movie is also an intimate story about a young soldier's experience at an epic war moment, but also "Overlord" had incredible dogfight stock footage from the war. It gave the movie an authenticity and exhilarating feel that few war movies have at that budget level. However, Nolan's dogfight sequences surpasses most in authentic feel. They just give you chills.  

It might be the size of the screen I saw it on that just engulfed me into the story, or the richness of a movie shot on film projected at that size (most are done digitally nowadays, or projected digitally), but there's a feel of being right there in the action throughout the movie. More than any other Nolan movie. It also helps that there are sequences in the movie when Nolan uses camera angles that you've never seen him pull off in a movie before. And the icing on all this is the incredible score by Hans Zimmer. The ticking clock motif he created is a great reminder that time is on no one's side in this movie.

"Dunkirk" opens in theaters on Friday.

SEE ALSO: Christopher Nolan explains the biggest challenge in making his latest movie "Dunkirk" into an "intimate epic"

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Mindy Kaling is reportedly pregnant with her first child

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The INSIDER Summary:

  • E! News reports that Mindy Kaling is pregnant, according to sources.
  • She hasn't confirmed the report.
  • The comedian and actress has said she's open to starting a family.

Mindy Kaling is reportedly going to be a mom.

According to E! News, the 38-year-old comedian is expecting her first child. Sources told the news outlet that the pregnancy comes as an "unexpected surprise" for Kaling.  

While there is little information currently available and the "Wrinkle in Time" star has not confirmed the report, she has been open about wanting kids. 

In a Yahoo! Style interview from 2015, Kaling said, "I think I've decided that unlike everything else in my life, I'm going to be fast and loose about kids. I'm going to not actively plan, but if it happens, it would happen."

"A Wrinkle in Time" is set to open March 9, 2018. 

Kaling's representatives didn't immediately respond to INSIDER's request for comment.

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Netflix says it will 'reinvigorate' the movie business, but theaters may not play a part in its plan

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Netflix wants to reinvent movies in the same way it did TV, according to its Q2 earnings letter posted Monday.

In the letter, Netflix focused on the importance of shaking up the movie business, which has seen dwindling numbers of people going to theaters.

"Just as we changed and reinvented the TV business by putting consumers first and making access to content more convenient, we believe internet TV can similarly reinvigorate the film business (as distinct from the theatrical business)," Netflix's letter read. "This year we will release 40 features that range from big budget popcorn films to grassroots independent cinema."

That parenthetical implies that while Netflix has a plan to boost the movie business, the traditional movie theater may or may not be part of it.

Netflix has sparred with old Hollywood over its release strategy, and commitment to having movies play online the same day they play in theaters. While its rival Amazon has played nice and respected the theaters by not streaming movies until the allotted 90 days after their theatrical run, Netflix has refused to do that. This has lead all the major movie chains to refuse to screen Netflix movies.

Most recently, Netflix's model got folks at the Cannes Film Festival upset as two Netflix titles, "Ojka" and Noah Baumbach's "The Meyerowitz Stories," were added to this year's esteemed competition lineup, though it was unclear if either title would play theatrically in France. The festival quickly announced that beginning in 2018, a film would only qualify for its competition lineup if it has a theatrical release in France.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings responded to the ruling on Facebook by characterizing it as "the establishment closing ranks against us."

In its Q2 letter, Netflix implies both that movies will be a big part of its future, and that it plans to disrupt the business — with or without the help of theaters.

SEE ALSO: "Dunkirk" is a very different Christopher Nolan epic — and it's his best movie in years

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REVIEW: The director of 'Dark Knight' just made his best movie ever — and Harry Styles is excellent in it

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harry styles dunkirk

War is hell, and "Dunkirk" doesn't shy away from its terrors. 

Christopher Nolan's newest movie isn't a superhero caper like "The Dark Knight" or a twisty science-fiction thriller like "Inception" and "Interstellar." Instead, it's about the Battle of Dunkirk, a pivotal moment in World War II for the British Army in 1940. It's not a boring history lesson, though. Nolan takes a complicated storytelling structure — there are three different timelines — realistic violence, and excellent performances from the likes of Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh, and — yes — Harry Styles to make his best movie yet.

Why should you care: Harry Styles is in it and Christopher Nolan might win an Oscar.

Eyebrows were raised when the world learned that former One Directioner Harry Styles was cast in the movie. The good news is, he's great! The performances are excellent all around. Styles, Fionn Whitehead, and Aneurin Barnard all star as three young soldiers trying to escape the German fighter pilots bombing them on Dunkirk's beach. They're the heart of the movie and hold their own alongside Cillian Murphy, Tom Hardy, Mark Rylance, and Kenneth Branagh.

As for Nolan — the director who has had hit after hit between the "Dark Knight" Trilogy, "Inception," and "Interstellar"– "Dunkirk" is his most Oscar-friendly movie yet. And it may finally get him a coveted best director nomination. 

What's hot: Nolan steps up his game.

There's a lot to like about Christopher Nolan. He brings smart storytelling to what could otherwise be messy blockbuster fare. That said, he often makes his stories needlessly convoluted, and he isn't always emotionally convincing.

With "Dunkirk," the director is at his best. Having three crisscrossing narratives isn't convoluted here; it's a useful way to understand how the war affected different people in different ways. We get to see the shame and terror of soldiers fleeing the battle and leaving their companions behind, compared with a hero who risks his life to save his fellow men. By having these happen simultaneously on screen, Nolan makes his themes more explicit and the movie is more powerful than it would be if it was just a linear story. The movie also just looks amazing. It was shot on IMAX and 70mm film and deserves to be seen on the biggest screen you can find.

What's not: Nothing much.

"Dunkirk" is as artful as big-budget, summer entertainment gets. Nolan fans may find it disappointing that it doesn't have many of his signatures— like men mourning over their dead wives, or an inflated run time (the movie is under two hours long) — but it's all for the best.

The bottom-line: Go watch it.

Christopher Nolan has made his best movie in years. "Dunkirk" is a riveting, terrifying, and thoughtful film on how different people experience war. Also, Harry Styles is great.

Grade:

A+

"Dunkirk" hits theaters on July 20.

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Netflix's new hit show is a triumph of 'New Hollywood' over 'Old Hollywood,' says showrunner

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"Super Mario Bros." is one of the most popular video game franchises of all time. Little Super Mario sits alongside Mickey Mouse and Ronald McDonald as one of the modern world's most recognizable characters.

And yet, even with something as popular and straightforward as "Super Mario Bros.", the Hollywood movie industry adapted it into something hilariously bad.

Super Mario Bros. (movie)

This is the norm for video game adaptations taken on by Hollywood, whether it's a TV show or a film — few expect their favorite game to get turned into a good movie or show.

The recently released "Castlevania" on Netflix, an animated show centered on the "Castlevania" video game series, is an incredible exception. It's smart, funny, and manages to turn a largely uninteresting game series (story-wise) into a compelling narrative.

We caught up with "Castlevania" showrunner Adi Shankar over the phone last week to ask how he and his team managed to pull off what so many others in Hollywood could not. Shankar said the reason so many video game adaptations are terrible is because of the approach taken by Hollywood: Rather than diving in on what makes the game's world interesting to the people who already love it, adaptations tend to broaden the scope too far in an attempt to draw in a larger audience.

"Let's say the game sold 5 million copies, right? [The studios] look at it as, 'Those are 5 million people who are gonna show up on opening weekend anyways. So let's get more people to show up,'" Shankar said. "But what they didn't get is no, no, no, no, no — that's like your marketing department. Those 5 million people? If you love something, you want everyone else to love it. You want to share that fandom with other people."

Castlevania (Netflix)

To Shankar, "Old Hollywood" is represented by that old approach: Take a property that people already love, and broaden it instead of appealing to its core. And it's "New Hollywood" that gave him the chance to make "Castlevania."

"I was done," Shankar said. He'd made a handful of successful but — by their very nature — unprofitable films on YouTube. He made what are essentially fan films that he dubbed his "Bootleg Universe": short films based on stuff like "Power Rangers" and "The Punisher." Since they're properties owned by major corporations, he was unable to profit from the films (lest he get sued). 

"After that came out, 'Old Hollywood' was kind of like, 'What is this guy smoking? What is wrong with this dude?'," Shankar said. "But then I guess 'New Hollywood' — the internet crowd — embraced me as one of their own at that point. Maker Studios gave me a three-picture deal. And there's a bunch of stuff that happened behind the scenes that wasn't even public knowledge. I was in kind of a weird spot because I wanted to leave, and I was like I'll try out this whole 'Hollywood Career version 2.0' for me." 

With one foot out the door, Hollywood pulled Shankar back in. 

Castlevania (Netflix)

"I shut down all the infrastructure I'd set up. I applied to graduate school. And then different brands just started hitting me up. It was kinda weird," he said. "Those same corporations that I was like 'Ugh, go away!' — they were calling me. There were rumors of maybe he'll direct this movie, maybe he'll produce that thing. And I'm like, 'What is going on? I'm literally out the door.'" 

It was around then that, through a chance encounter, Shankar learned of an opportunity to lead production on a show based on "Castlevania," a classic video game franchise close to Shankar's heart. He jumped at it, and the show we have now is the result of that chance encounter.

But Shankar sees his role in Hollywood as similar to that of Joss Whedon (who directed "The Avengers"), James Gunn (who directed "Guardians of the Galaxy") and Jon Favreau (who directed "Iron Man"), only with video games as the medium being adapted rather than comic books.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 Disney

Here's Shankar:

"The way I see it is comic book adaptations were really bad for a very long time. And really what it took was a bunch of kids who loved comic books growing up, who were then pissed off at how bad the comic books movies were, to be like, 'I'm gonna change that.' Right? They went out and made 'Iron Man.' They went out and made 'The Avengers.' They went out and made all these now-great comic book adaptations."

And he's not wrong. Before comic book movies took over as the modern blockbuster, there were dozens of whiffs. Do yourself a favor and don't watch "Batman Forever," for instance. It took decades of misses before Hollywood figured out how to consistently make hit films out of comic books. And even then, it wasn't a measure of the film industry figuring out how to do it — they simply handed the keys to directors who grew up with comics, who love those comics. 

Shankar put it as such: "It's on our generation to fix this problem." His next project, unsurprisingly, is another video game adaptation: "Assassin's Creed." 

SEE ALSO: Netflix somehow managed to make a great TV show based on a video game

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One Direction fans, rejoice: Harry Styles proves he's an amazing actor in 'Dunkirk'

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harry styles dunkirk set photo

The INSIDER Summary:

  • One Direction singer Harry Styles is one of the main actors in "Dunkirk."
  • It's his first major movie role and he's amazing in it.
  • He plays a soldier fleeing a hopeless battle during World War II.

It's surprising that Harry Styles was cast in "Dunkirk" in the first place.

Sure, director Christopher Nolan has made some some unexpected casting decisions in the past that worked out for the best. Heath Ledger wasn't an obvious choice to play The Joker in "The Dark Knight," but he won an Oscar for it. And you wouldn't normally think of Matthew McConaughey as a moody spaceman, but "Interstellar" was a key element of  the actor's career comeback, the "McConaissance."

But Styles is the singer from One Direction. He hasn't acted in anything except for an episode of "iCarly." Christopher Nolan didn't even know who he was.

Fortunately, Styles is very, very good in "Dunkirk."In the movie, he plays Alex, a British army private on the beaches of Dunkirk, France, during World War II. Along with characters played by Fionn Whitehead and Aneurin Barnard, he finds their position hopeless and tries to escape. They spend a lot of time dodging bullets, escaping bombs dropped from overhead, and fleeing sinking ships.

dunkirk harry styles actors on beach

The movie has three different narratives happening simultaneously: one on land, one on the sea, and one in the air. Styles, Whitehead, and Barnard are all members of the "land" plotline, and they literally ground the film. It's the emotional center of the story and the three actors prove to be the heart of it all.

The battle of Dunkirk occupies a strange space in the history of World War II. It was in some way an embarrassing defeat. The city is visible from across the English channel, and yet the British army was beaten back and was forced to evacuate. It's that evacuation, conducted by many non-military men, that's known as the heroic moment of the battle. In the movie, Mark Rylance plays such a character, an older man who takes his weekend boat to rescue stranded soldiers.

But for the soldiers themselves — like Styles's character — there's a sense of shame. He's a soldier who's terrified in the face of the enemy and who flees instead of fights. By doing that, he effectively values his own life over those of his fellow soldiers. It's a somber and difficult emotional dynamic. When he's on the beach, Styles is usually singing about what makes you beautiful. Now he's dodging bombs dropped from German planes. His career will never be the same again.

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Netflix CEO says big cash burn will be an 'indicator of enormous success' (NFLX)

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reed hastings netflix

Netflix crushed its growth targets for the second quarter, adding over five million subscribers worldwide, and was rewarded with a stock price that soared to an all-time high Tuesday.

The party is in full swing for Netflix investors.

And they have reason to be jubilant, since Netflix said it expects much of the Q2 momentum to carry forward.

But there is one area that still has some analysts concerned: Netflix's large negative free cash flow, which it expects to continue "for many years."

On Monday, Netflix updated its estimate for negative free cash flow for 2017. While previously the company had said it would be $2 billion, Netflix now says it will be $2 to $2.5 billion (versus $1.7 billion in 2016).

What's the source of the cash burn?

"When we produce an amazing show like 'Stranger Things,' that's a lot of capital up front, and then you get a payout over it over many years," CEO Reed Hastings explained Monday. "And seeing the positive returns on that for the business as a whole is what makes us comfortable that we should continue to invest."

Put more formally: "With our content strategy paying off in strong member, revenue and profit growth, we think it’s wise to continue to invest," Netflix wrote in its letter to shareholders. "In continued success, we will deploy increased capital in content, particularly in owned originals, and, as we have said before, we expect to be FCF negative for many years."

This strategy gives some analysts pause.

Here's a good expression of the concern from MoffettNathanson’s Michael Nathanson (via Deadline):

"We’ve mused that the current model is akin to a new restaurant serving the best filet mignon for $10 per steak and watching happy patrons fill every seat. At some point, the restaurant’s owners (and lenders) will start asking about a path to generating cash flow on that investment ... we just don’t believe that Netflix is building an impenetrable moat that justifies its $80 billion in market cap."

Netflix management, however, sees its high cash burn as a sign of success, since it means its original content strategy is working.

"The irony is the faster we grow, and the faster we grow owned originals, the more drawn on free cash flow that will be," Hastings said. "In some senses the negative free cash flow will be an indicator of enormous success."

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The 30 best superhero movies since the turn of the century

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avengers age of ultron

In 1998, predicting a fiscally and artistically rich superhero-movie industry would’ve gotten you laughed out of your local comics shop. Hell, the idea of an “industry” for movies about costumed heroes was ludicrous. No such thing had ever existed.

Superhero movies had been few and far between throughout cinema history, and the then-most-recent superpowered flick had been 1997’s Batman and Robin — a movie so derided that George Clooney has spent 20 years apologizing for it. Then Wesley Snipes came along and changed everything. On August 21, 1998, Blade was released and audiences watched Snipes don the shades of the titular vampire-stabbing superhero (a longtime Marvel Comics staple). The picture earned more than $131 million worldwide.

Quietly, a revolution began.

In the nearly two decades since, successful caped-crusader movies started trickling, then flooding, into theaters. Now we live in a world where the global film economy is largely built on them. The so-called Marvel Cinematic Universe alone has raked in more than $10 billion to date, and when a movie like Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice makes $872 million, it’s regarded as something of a disappointment. Studios announce their superhero slates like Stalin announced five-year plans. High-profile directors get attached to adaptations of comics few have ever heard of. It sure feels like we’re in a bubble, but there’s no sign it’ll pop anytime soon — and even when it does pop, there will be plenty of products of this spandex-clad era worth rewatching. Here are the 30 best superhero movies since Blade kicked off their modern renaissance.

But first, let’s talk methodology. Our criteria for what constitutes a superhero movie are as follows: It must (a) be about a do-gooder or group of do-gooders who either have superhuman abilities or are more skilled at crime-fighting than any real-life human possibly could be (Batman and the Punisher being examples of the latter), and (b) be set primarily on Earth, which excludes sci-fi fantasias like Star Wars and Guardians of the Galaxy, as both are set in galaxies where superhuman abilities are commonplace.

There’s also a certain amount of Potter Stewart–esque logic here: You know a superhero when you see one.

SEE ALSO: The 30 most anticipated movies for the rest of 2017

30. "Doctor Strange" (2016)

Doctor Strange is an exceedingly pretty movie. Scott Derrickson’s debut Marvel outing is one of the more visually sumptuous products to ever come out of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, setting the bar higher for all the effects-heavy super-outings that come after it. In superhero cinema, metahuman powers are all too often depicted as a series of explosions and energy beams with occasional flying — not so in Strange, where the reality-warping abilities of the titular sorcerer and his friends and foes cause cities and landscapes to fold in on themselves with daring and grandiosity not even seen in the film to which it owes its biggest debt, Inception.

But beyond the aesthetic joys, there’s plenty of fun stuff here from Benedict Cumberbatch, Tilda Swinton, and especially the deliciously mustache-twirling Mads Mikkelsen. It may not be all that narratively innovative, but the imagery — like Swinton slowing down lightning during a conversation on a stormy New York City night — more than makes up for the boilerplate plot.



29. "Deadpool" (2016)

It’s hard to predict turning points in culture, but it feels like Deadpool is going to be a minor landmark in American entertainment — for better or worse. The grip of the American superhero seemed to be weakening when it came out: The flicks immediately preceding it were the dull Avengers: Age of Ultron, the troubled Ant-Man, and the reviled Fantastic Four.

Then along came Ryan Reynolds to fart and masturbate his way into the hearts of millions. Though Deadpool’s narrative arc is pretty boilerplate, it gave superhero movies a pressure-release valve in the form of well-deployed self-mockery. Sure, the fourth-wall breakage and the Hangover-esque frattiness aren’t exactly revolutionary motifs for cinema, but they were potent additions to the genre’s toolbox.



28. "The Dark Knight Rises" (2012)

There’s a lot about the final chapter of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy that doesn’t quite work. To name a few problems: Bane and Catwoman have barely intelligible motivations, Batman ends the movie by flat-out retiring, and the plot’s politics are so cartoonishly reactionary that even the most die-hard Republican might say they’re a bit much. But boy, oh boy, is it pretty. This is one of the most visually sumptuous tentpole movies of recent years, with one breathtaking sight after another.

The eerily quiet overhead shots of Gotham’s bridges exploding, the disappearing football field, and the stunning airplane-hijacking sequence are just a smattering of the highlights. And people really undervalue Tom Hardy’s line readings. Sure, the audio distortion is overdone, but he created a unique bad-guy voice in the cinematic canon, which is nothing to sneeze (or wheeze) at. If you haven’t entertained yourself by saying “Perhaps he’s wondering why someone would shoot a man … before throwing him out of a plane!” in a Bane voice to yourself while alone, you’re really missing out.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

I had no idea who Harry Styles was, but I still loved him in his first movie role

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harry styles dunkirk split

The INSIDER Summary:

  • One Direction singer Harry Styles is in "Dunkirk."
  • He's great for Harry Styles fans because he's Harry Styles.
  • Non-Harry Styles fans will also appreciate him because he's a good actor and blends in with the rest of the cast.
  • Fortunately, he doesn't sing.


I don't really care for One Direction. It's just not my thing. And for that reason, I love Harry Styles in "Dunkirk."

There are two types of people in this world. There are people who love Harry Styles and follow his every move. And there are people who vaguely know who he is, if they've heard of him at all. For the most part, I'm the latter. So was "Dunkirk" director Christopher Nolan, who cast Styles in the movie without knowing he was very famous.

That's what makes casting Styles a stroke of genius.

If you watch "Dunkirk" for Harry Styles, you'll love it because Harry Styles is in it. He's a very good actor and he's the heart of the movie.

If you watch "Dunkirk" for everything else in "Dunkirk," you'll love it because it's a great movie about the psychological effects of war and it's Christopher Nolan's best movie yet. Also, there's a great actor named Harry Styles in it.

As Nolan said, "I cast Harry, because he fit the part wonderfully and truly earned a seat at the table."

harry styles in dunkirk

Watching the movie, I honestly wasn't sure which character Harry Styles played. I didn't really know what he looked like, except that he has a lot of hair. But in the movie, his hair is cut and he could have been any of the three significant characters who are white guys in their twenties with dark hair, light eyes, and strong chins. They're all good actors and I was able to appreciate the movie without getting pulled out of it and thinking, "Hey, that's Harry Styles."

It's also important that Styles doesn't sing in the movie. For a prime example of how a musician should not act, just look at Ed Sheeran on the season 7 premiere of "Game of Thrones." He looked exactly like Ed Sheeran. That pulls viewers out of the show's immersive experience. He also sang a song (Sheeran is a "musician"), which threw off the pacing of the episode. Viewers hated it so much that Sheeran deleted his Twitter account in the wake of the backlash.

The only times musicians should sing in a movie is if they're playing themselves, like Frank Sinatra in "Higher and Higher," cheekily playing a funnier version of themselves, like The Backstreet Boys in "This Is the End," or if you're in a movie called "Inside Llewyn Davis" and you happen to be Justin Timberlake. Notice how Frank Sinatra didn't try to sing when he was playing an army private in "From Here to Eternity" or a heroin addict in "The Man With The Golden Arm," when he was playing characters who were people other than himself. Wisely, neither does Harry Styles in "Dunkirk."

"Dunkirk" hits theaters on Thursday.

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