One cool thing about Kong: Skull Island is that it reunites Jason Mitchell and Corey Hawkins. Mitchell and Hawkins recently starred together in Straight Outta Compton as Eazy-E and Dr. Dre, respectively. Mitchell told Yahoo Movies what it was like to reconnect with Hawkins.
Universal’s EVP of digital marketing told Austin audience that non-black and non-Hispanic Facebook users saw trailers that featured not a word about N.W.A., but were instead re-cut to look like a biopic about how Ice Cube and Dr. Dre became present-day moguls
Since nominations for the 88th Academy Awards were announced last Thursday and — for the second consecutive year —consisted of an entirely white pool of acting contenders, demands to better diversify the Oscars have come from the likes of Spike Lee, George Clooney, Michael Moore, recent Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o, and the Academy’s African-American president herself, Cheryl Boone Isaacs. Jada Pinkett Smith called for a boycott, which was seconded by her husband, Will Smith. With high-profile snubs of films that included Straight Outta Compton and Creed and performances from Will Smith (Concussion) and Idris Elba (Beasts of No Nation), all coming a year after the Best Picture nominee Selma’s director, Ava DuVernay, and leading man, David Oyelowo, were left off the ballot, it’s clear Oscar’s voting system is broken.
Straight Outta Compton producer Will Packer has weighed in on the 2016 Oscar nominations’ lack of diversity. In a lengthy Facebook post, Packer applauded performances by performers of color and called his fellow Academy members to action, pleading with them to focus on hiring minorities in the future. “But who I really want to applaud are some other actors, directors and producers who were at the top of their game this year,” Packer wrote.
The nominees for the 2016 Academy Awards will be announced on Thursday, and Golden Globe winners like Leonardo DiCaprio (The Revenant) and Brie Larson (Room) are as close as you can get to sure things. But Oscar always has a few surprises up his sleeve, and occasionally a long-shot contender makes the cut. Above are 13 unlikely actors and movies we’d love to see named on Thursday morning.
To the delight of studios and fans alike, 2015 was the year that audiences decided to go back to the movies. Films like Jurassic World and Star Wars: The Force Awakens became full-blown cinematic events, attracting massive crowds and shattering box-office records. This week, industry analysts confidently declared that domestic box office would surpass $11 billion by the end of the year, an all-time high. While tentpole films made waves, it was also a good year for low-budget cult movies and limited-release Oscar contenders, as well as demographics that have often been underrepresented in Hollywood (like films starring African-American characters and/or female protagonists). Click through for a sampling of 2015’s biggest box-office winners. (Go here for a roundup of the year’s biggest box-office busts.)
With any luck, you’ve got a whole bunch of days off for the holidays on the horizon, which would make it the perfect time to catch up with all the movies you’ve been dying to see this year. Derived from our ranking of the top 40 films of 2015, here is a visual guide to the top half of that list. Starting with our 20th ranked film — the revealing, heartbreaking documentary about the late musical prodigy Amy Winehouse, Amy — the list has something for everyone: more documentaries (The Look of Silence), searing satires (Spike Lee’s Chi-Raq and Anchorman director Adam McKay’s The Big Short), animated wonders (Inside Out), smash hit biopics (Straight Outta Compton), big budget sci-fi flicks (The Martian) and the best of the Oscar contenders.
Creed, Straight Outta Compton and Concussion are among the nominees for Outstanding Motion Picture at the 47th Annual NAACP Image Awards.
By Brent Lang Variety exclusive: The Fast and Furious franchise may take a page from Star Wars and Marvel. Producer and star Vin Diesel tells Variety that the team behind the fast cars and criminals series is in the preliminary stages of developing prequels and spin-offs. It’s a very rich property and we’re committed to treating it with a lot of class.” The actor did not say which characters would get their own standalone films, but in the past, Dwayne Johnson has hinted that he’d like to see his character, Diplomatic Security Service agent Luke Hobbs, branch out into independent adventures. Universal Pictures Chairman Donna Langley confirmed that talks were taking place about ways to broaden the series’ reach.
Actors at the Governors Awards share their favorite feel-good films with Yahoo Movies as a respite after the Paris attacks.
By Eriq Gardner Former N.W.A. manager Jerry Heller wants the world to know he’s not really a “bad guy.” In a $110 million defamation lawsuit filed on Friday against producers and others connected with Straight Outta Compton, Heller slams the hit film as falsely portraying him as responsible for the break-up of the rap act consisting of Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Easy-E and others. Heller says he didn’t take advantage of the artists, didn’t withhold a $75,000 check from Ice Cube, wasn’t enjoying lobster brunches while contracts were being finalized, wasn’t fired by Easy-E and more. After signaling the lawsuit was coming and shopping around for attorneys to represent him, Heller landed with Michael Shapiro, who was slapped with sanctions earlier this year for failing to serve the many defendants in a lawsuit over music used in The Steve Harvey Show. The newest lawsuit sets the bar high again with quite a number of defendants including NBCUniversal, Legendary Pictures, Comptown Records, director F. Gary Gray, the artists who were the subjects of the biopic and others.
Storyboards are an essential tool for filmmakers, allowing directors and cinematographers to conceptualize a scene before cameras roll, especially when an action-heavy sequence needs to be presented in a way that makes sense for the audience. For one of this summer’s biggest hits, Straight Outta Compton, Jeffrey Errico (no relation to this author) was brought in to visualize one of film’s key sequences: The Detroit riot sparked at an N.W.A. concert when the band performed “F–k tha Police” in direct violation of police orders. His boards manage to map the action in a way that reveals Errico’s onetime desire to be a comic illustrator. Page through for an excerpt of the original storyboards for that scene, along with the artist’s commentary. Warning: this slideshow contains material that some readers might find objectionable._________Jeffrey Errico, a.k.a. StoryboardGuru, has worked on such films as Terminator Genisys, 22 Jump Street, This Is the End, Neighbors, and Snow White and the Huntsman and also leads storyboarding workshops. Follow him on Facebook and Instagram.
Nearly 30 years ago, a young rap group called N.W.A. took over the airwaves and revolutionized hip-hop. Now, ‘Straight Outta Compton,’ a biopic about the iconic crew, is the number one movie at the box office. The film boasts some fresh-faced actors who look a whole lot like the men they play, but nothing beats the real thing. So we got our hands on vintage high-school yearbook shots of some of the men involved with N.W.A. Click through to see a gallery of them then and now.
“Bye, Felisha.” It was a throwaway line from the 1995 Ice Cube-Chris Tucker stoner comedy Friday that two decades later became a ubiquitous meme in typical ubiquitous meme fashion. The quote, uttered under-his-breath by Ice Cube’s blunt-smoking Craig Jones to neighborhood pest Felisha, is now pop-culture code for “good riddance” — and of course it even has its own Urban Dictionary entry (the new form adopts the more common spelling of the name, Felicia). The line shows up in the Ice Cube-produced N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton, as does as a subsequent scene showing Cube working on the script for Friday, leading “Felicia” enthusiasts to connect the dots and wonder if the hit movie just explained the popular phrase’s origin.
In the N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton, we learn the backstories to some of the influential rap outfit’s most popular songs. Much has changed for Ice Cube (born O'Shea Jackson) during the 27 years since “F—k Tha Police” first hit airwaves.
We set up some classic rap verses by the likes of Notorious B.I.G., 2Pac, Wu-Tang Clan, and A Tribe Called Quest — and saw if the young Straight Outta Compton stars could finish the rest of the lyrics.
As far as real-life stories go, the NWA biopic Straight Outta Compton has some of the most uncanny casting we’ve ever seen. “I was sitting in the kitchen watching Sports Center and he comes in and tells me he wants me to play him in a movie,” O'Shea Jackson Jr. told us about the moment his father, O'Shea Jackson (aka Ice Cube), first approached him about making his acting debut. In addition to Jackson Jr., the drama features Corey Hawkins (Non-Stop) as Dr. Dre, Jason Mitchell (Contraband) as Eazy-E, Neil Brown Jr. (Fast & Furious) as DJ Yella, and Aldis Hodge (A Good Day to Die Hard) as MC Ren.
It all kicked off with the riveting, “authorized” tell-all documentary Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, which has not only been called “the most intimate rock doc ever” but which Jack Black personally told us was the best rock doc ever, and we’d trust that guy to school us in rock docs.
NWA hasn’t performed on stage together in over a decade, but the groundbreaking rap group’s surviving members did have a stage reunion of sorts on the set of their upcoming biopic, Straight Outta Compton.