Mad Men creator accused of harassing writer

The creator of US drama Mad Men has been accused of sexual harassment by a former writer on the show.
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Tyler, the Creator Deepens Relationship With Converse

Tyler, the Creator, whose real name is Tyler Okonma, is expanding his relationship with Converse.
The rapper, who worked with Vans before signing with Converse this year, has designed a new sneaker style, which is a play on the One Star silhouette, and is releasing a line of apparel. All of this product will sit under the Golf Le Fleur collection.
The sneakers, which come in green, yellow and off-white, retail for $ 100. The apparel collection includes a sherpa bomber jacket, short and bucket hat along with a pullover hoodie and graphic T-shirt. The assortment retails from $ 35 to $ 150.
The line will launch at Kasina, a streetwear concept shop in Seoul on Oct. 18. Fans can purchase his sneakers to gain access to Okonma’s performance, which will take place at MUV Hall that evening.
Okonma also designs his own line, which is called Golf Wang.

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South Park Creator ‘Would Love to Make a FPS’

After now having worked on two South Park role-playing games, series creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker discussed what other genres they might like to explore.

“I would love to make a first-person shooter. I’m not even kidding,” Stone said in an interview with IGN. “Some sort of first-person, going through a 3D thing where you’re seeing characters.”

Stone went on to note how the role-playing genre is such a good fit for South Park, saying, “I love the way we do

and Stick of Truth where the whole conceit behind those is it looks like the show.” Parker also pointed out how “RPGs just play so well into… writing, and applying to characters,” which makes the genre such a good fit for South Park.

Continue reading…

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Andy Signore, ‘Honest Trailers’ Creator, Suspended After Sexual Harassment Allegations

Defy Media has suspended Andy Signore, SVP of content and creator of Screen Junkies and the “Honest Trailers” parody franchise, after multiple women have come forward to publicly accuse him of sexual harassment, including one woman who alleged that Signore tried to sexually assault her. April Dawn wrote in a Twitter post Friday that Signore […]

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Lost creator teases Watchmen series

The creator of hit TV shows Lost and The Leftovers has picked up an adaptation of cult graphic novel The Watchmen.
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Inside the Secrets, Scandals and Legacy of ‘Full House’ From Creator Jeff Franklin (EXCLUSIVE)

September 22, 1987. Thirty years ago. Ronald Reagan was president, and “Full House” debuted on ABC’s worst night at 8 p.m. Friday, considered to be not a time slot, but rather a “death slot.” We barely made the Top 75. The reviews of the show were terrible — “cheesy, saccharine, mind-numbing” — and that was from the one… Read more »

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Netflix Signs ‘Scandal’ Creator From ABC as Rivalry Intensifies

Netflix has recruited prolific television producer Shonda Rhimes, the creator of ABC hits such as “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy,” the clearest sign yet of a race for talent between new and old entertainment industry giants.
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Tyler, the Creator Just Remade Your Favorite Converse

The superstar creative just paired up with the iconic brand.

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‘Simpsons’ Creator Matt Groening Leads Comic-Con Crowd In Anti-Trump Cheer

“Lock him up! Lock him up!”
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Paddington Bear creator Michael Bond dies

The best-selling children’s author died at his home after a short illness, aged 91.
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Paddington Bear Creator Michael Bond Dies At 91

The children’s book character became iconic in the U.K. and beyond.
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‘Fleabag’ Creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge on Guinea Pigs, Finding Olivia Colman’s Evil Side, and a Potential Season 2

When Phoebe Waller-Bridge stopped by Variety’s offices earlier this month, she cautioned me against asking her too many definite questions about Season 2. Although the creator, writer, and star of “Fleabag” had already hinted at a Season 2 in previous interviews, “it’s not actually officially announced.” But that hasn’t stopped Waller-Bridge from overflowing with tons… Read more »

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The Wire creator goes from Baltimore to Broadway

The creator of hit US television drama The Wire has written a musical based
around the music of The Pogues.
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Line of Duty: series creator Jed Mercurio interrogated

It’s finally time to find out who Balaclava Man is in the police drama Line of Duty.
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Dear White People’s Creator Explains What Netflix’s Racially-Charged Satire Is Really All About

Dear White PeopleGet ready to get woke.
Dear White People has arrived on Netflix, and creator Justin Simien’s 10-episode adaptation of his critically-acclaimed 2014 film of the same name has a…

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Carrie Fisher: Star Wars creator pays tribute

Star Wars creator George Lucas has paid tribute to the late Carrie Fisher at a convention celebrating 40 years of the franchise.
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Colin Dexter, creator of Inspector Morse, dies aged 86

The crime writer died peacefully at his home in Oxford on Tuesday, his publisher says.
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Review: Drake the Creator Meets Drake the Curator on ‘More Life’

His new release isn’t an album or a mixtape, but a playlist — a format that hasn’t been used to express an artistic vision until now.
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‘SpongeBob SquarePants’ Creator Stephen Hillenburg Says He Has ALS

Stephen Hillenburg, the 55-year-old creator of the beloved Nickelodeon cartoon “SpongeBob SquarePants,” says he has ALS, Variety reported Monday.

“I wanted people to hear directly from me that I have been diagnosed with ALS,” the married father of one revealed in a statement to the trade publication. “Anyone who knows me knows that I will continue to work on ‘SpongeBob SquarePants’ and my other passions for as long as I am able. My family and I are grateful for the outpouring of love and support. We ask that our sincere request for privacy be honored during this time.”

Doctors gave the animator the diagnosis recently, an unidentified source told Variety.

ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, named for the famous New York Yankees player who died from it in 1941. It attacks nerve cells, resulting in disability and eventual death, the Mayo Clinic states. ALS patients live an average of two to five years from the time of diagnosis, according to the ALS Association. 

Hillenburg, a former marine biologist, had originally called his fast-talking sponge character “Sponge, The Boy” but ran into copyright issues, according to a biography. “SpongeBob SquarePants” premiered in 1999 and became a Saturday morning hit that eventually transitioned to prime time.

Two “SpongeBob” movies have earned a combined total of more than $ 463 million globally at the box office.

Steve Hillenburg is a brilliant creator who brings joy to millions of fans,” Nickelodeon said in a statement to outlets. “Our thoughts and support are with Steve and his family during this difficult time. Out of respect for their wishes for privacy, we will have no further comment.”

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World wide web creator Tim Berners-Lee targets fake news

Social media sites and search engines must be pushed to do more to combat the problem, he says.
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Web creator wants crackdown on fake news

The inventor of the World Wide Web has expressed his fears about fake news, as he unveiled plans to tackle “unethical” political advertising and the harvesting of data.
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‘Brown Girls’ Web Series Creator Says Joy Is A Powerful Political Weapon

The concept of political art may elicit thoughts of carefully designed protest signs, upside-down flags and other distorted emblems of patriotism. And rightly so: artists, now more than ever, are using their craft to comment on the state of the union and to encourage progress.

For Fatimah Asghar, poet and creator of a new web series called “Brown Girls,” political acts aren’t always so overt. Her show, which premieres this month on OpenTV, is a comedy about two friends, Leila and Patricia, navigating dating, sexuality, personal finances and other millennial woes. But the show, while personal, is also political, Asghar says.

“If this show, or other comedic projects, provide spaces of joy and resistance during a political upheaval, I think that is amazing,” she told The Huffington Post.

The project, which she calls a love letter to the myriad communities she belongs to, was borne of her friendship with her best friend, singer Jamila Woods. The two live in Chicago and provide one another with emotional and creative support.

The trailer for “Brown Girls” shows a similar connection between Leila and Patricia, as the women drink beers in bed, talk with their mothers about feminism, and vow their commitment to “single girls club forever.” A willingness to show life’s more private moments on screen has earned the show comparisons to “Insecure” and “Atlanta,” two series Asghar watched and loved after writing her own.

Below, Asghar talked with HuffPost about her new series:

When and why did you start writing “Brown Girls”?

I started writing “Brown Girls” in the fall of 2015. I started writing it because I love film and TV and have always thought of it as an intimidating form, but it was something that I always wanted to try. So I kind of just was like, fuck it ― I’m going to do this. And I wrote a story that was loosely based on the life of me and my best friend, because I don’t often see women of color from different racial backgrounds being friends in TV or film. When they are portrayed I feel like they are often in competition with each other, and I don’t like that. That’s not true to my life.

You’ve described the show in other interviews as personal, or as a love letter. How much of the show is drawn from your own life?

The two main characters, Leila and Patricia, hold the same identity traits as me and my best friend, Jamila Woods. However, they are by no means identical representations of us, nor are all the events autobiographical. What I wanted to make sure to capture was the texture of our friendship, that was my biggest priority. In some ways, I think both Leila and Patricia have personality elements from me and Jamila in them and are kind of alter-egos.

The series is a comedy. What do you think is the role of comedy when there’s so much serious political upheaval?

I believe that joy can be our greatest weapon during tough political times. When I protest, when I fight against things that I don’t believe in, it’s all out of love. It’s based on my love for the people who are affected by said issue or political turbulence. That’s what I hoped the show would be ― a love letter for the different communities of color that I am a part of, and a joyous celebration of friendship and identity. If this show, or other comedic projects, provide spaces of joy and resistance during a political upheaval, I think that is amazing.

In a statement you recently issued on your Facebook page, you noted that the majority of your crew are people of color, women or queer. Why was it important to you to be representative down to the people behind the camera?

I think that diversity in the crew is incredibly important. The crew controls the mechanics of how the show is shot and seen. And when I worked in theater, even if there was a racially diverse show onstage, that diversity was rarely represented by the crew. The excuse I heard over and over again was, “Oh we can’t find talented enough people from diverse backgrounds.” That’s just completely false. What we wanted to do was create an amazing crew, all masters in their own craft, on this show. We wanted to have a crew that reflected the diversity of the cast and story, as well as the people creating art from various communities in Chicago. And so we did. And I think it’s a real testament to how amazing the crew is that they were able to work on a limited budget to create such a high-end project.

What TV shows or web series are you loving right now?

I love “How to Get Away with Murder” and “Scandal.” I’ve been a big Shonda [Rhimes] fan for a long time. I also recently watched and loved “Atlanta” and “Insecure.” I love the friendships in “Atlanta,” the way that the show followed the relationships between these three men. I also think that show was doing such interesting things formally. Issa Rae has always been a huge inspiration, especially her journey from web series to network. I also love this web series called “Ladies Room,” which is hilarious.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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Super Mario's creator explains how 'Super Mario Run' will reach a new generation

Super Mario's creator explains how 'Super Mario Run' will reach a new generationSince his debut more than 30 years ago in the original “Donkey Kong,” Nintendo’s Mario has appeared in more than 200 different games, become an international icon and turned Nintendo into a household name. Launching Dec. 15 for Apple’s iPhone and iPad and coming to Android devices in the near future, “Super Mario Run” is the first Mario game for any smartphone platform. Available for $ 9.99, “Super Mario Run” features three game modes: World Tour, Toad Rally and Kingdom Builder.



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How to Get Away With Murder Creator Teases New Mystery: Who Killed Wes?

How to Get Away With Murder, HTGAWMHow to Get Away With Murder creator Pete Nowalk agonized over which character would be under the sheet in the winter finale of the ABC drama until pretty much the very last minute he could. But…

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How to Get Away With Murder Creator Teases New Mystery: Who Killed Wes?

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Expert regrets Bitcoin ‘creator’ blog

A Bitcoin expert expresses regret about the way he blogged support for an Australian’s claim to have invented the crypto-currency.
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Jane the Virgin Exclusive: Creator Jennie Urman on Jane’s New-Mom Life, Team Michael v. Team Rafael, and Britney Spears in Season 2

When I interviewed Gina Rodriguez for our October cover story, she told me that "Jane is Jennie, and Jennie is Jane." We all know the Jane she was talking about: Ms. Jane Villanueva, the earnest,…


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Odd Mom Out Star and Creator Jill Kargman on Shifting From Best-Selling Author to Acting at Age 40

Jill Kargman’s Odd Mom Out is Bravo’s newest scripted series—and damn, it’s good. Funny, down-to-earth Kargman (author of Momzillas) says she grew up with “one foot in and one foot out” of the rarified petri…




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‘Gilmore Girls’ Creator Amy Sherman-Palladino Is Working On A Musical

Attention Stars Hollow: “Gilmore Girls” creator Amy Sherman-Palladino has announced that she is working on a musical and a show for Amazon.

“I’m writing the book to a musical right now,” Amy Sherman-Palladino told moderator Danielle Nussbaum during her ATX panel on Saturday morning. “It just happened.”

She didn’t provide many details, only telling the crowd that it’s “based on a movie nobody would have seen.”

“I’m just going to say it’s original,” she said, stopping herself from revealing to much. “It’s original. Fuck it.”

She also (fleetingly) mentioned that she is working a new show. Since her run “Bunheads” like “Gimore Girls” ended abruptly and far too soon, getting more TV form Sherman-Palladino is great thing.

“I’m working on a pilot for the delightful Amazon company,” she said, before launching into a story about getting caught in the door on her way into their offices. “That’s what I’m working on right now.”

Lauren Duca is currently covering the ATX Television Festival for The Huffington Post. Follow her on Twitter @laurenduca and expect much more to come!

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Archer Creator Adam Reed Imparts Professional Wisdom, Notes New Series Cassius & Clay

Writer-creator Adam Reed is a busy guy with a hit animated series (Archer) and another one on the way (Cassius & Clay) — plus he’s flying up to Canada this week for the Banff World Media Festival — so we jump right into it.

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Adam Reed: The Official Headshot

I see that you’ll be hosting a master class at Banff — what can you tease about that, without being too spoiler-y?

I don’t know, actually. I’m mortified that it’s called that! [laughs] Well, not that it’s called that, but that they would, you know, have me teaching or doing something called a ‘master class.’ I’m quite nervous! I can tease that!

Okay, well at least everyone will know what sort of tenor the meeting will have.

Yeah: awkward and stammering!

Great! Everyone’ll know what to expect.

Yeah, but they’re probably mostly Canadians, so they’re going to be really polite about it.

Yeah, they’ll kind of look the other way. Obviously you’re going to be talking about the development of Archer, to some extent — probably to a great extent.

I would think so.

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Can we go back to the beginning of that? Because I’m not totally sure what the genesis was, where you said, ‘Okay, I want to do this kind of crazy spy-adventure thing, with this sort of anachronistic time line, and all the rest.’ What germinated to make that happen?

My partner Matt Thompson and I had a cartoon on Adult Swim called Frisky Dingo, and it had been sort of ‘canceled by mutual agreement,’ I guess. Although I say it was ‘mutual,’ they might’ve just said that to make us feel better. But after that show was canceled, I took a year off and traveled: I walked across Spain, and I was in North Africa — and I was sort of bedraggled-looking most of the time. But I was sitting in really nice cafés in Europe, and just filling up notebooks with show ideas. I kept coming back to thinking about James Bond, and all the cool places in Europe he went, and all the fancy parties that he went to — that I wouldn’t be invited to, because I had a backpack and a scraggly beard. So I just started thinking more and more about James Bond.

Years ago, somebody gave me a set of all the James Bond paperbacks, like, from the ’50s. And I read a couple of them, and in the books James Bond is really quite a bastard. And also a rapist. So I was trying to think how to make a secret agent as big a bastard as possible, that you would still like and root for. And obviously not have him be a rapist like James Bond. From that sprang Archer.

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James Bond lost the funny — so Archer picked it up!

Okay. Well, continuing that tangent just briefly, do you have a favorite Ian Fleming book, or a favorite James Bond in the movies?

In the movies, I’m a Connery man, although I really like the Daniel Craig reboot. I’m less of a fan of the sort of tongue-in-cheek Roger Moore era — although I think the new ones could stand to have just a slightly lighter tone sometimes. They can be pretty grim, recently. But I think Craig’s a fantastic Bond.

Yeah, like when the train goes kerblooey, and Bond readjusts his cuff-links, I was like, ‘Okay, now you’re back on the right track.’

Yeah, exactly. Exactly. I like those little touches.

Do you consciously bring any of that — or James Coburn’s ‘Flint’ movies — or that era into your discussions, when you’re creating the episodes?

Not so much anymore, but certainly early on. Flint was a big influence, as was Matt Helm, and OSS 117 — everything, basically. We put it all in a pot, and stole all of our favorite things from a lot of different sources.

Do you ever have to modify stuff, so it’s more comprehensible in the modern day? Or do you just go with it being amusingly anachronistic?

It’s sort of whatever serves us best, and we’re — I think — unfair, and break several rules about it. But when it serves the comedy to have it be more ’60s- or ’70s-based technology, or whatever, we use that. But when it serves us to have the Internet or cell phones, we use that. Cell phones make it much easier than having people have to go to a phone booth. Text messaging is a really economical way to forward the story, and not wait for the mail to get delivered.

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Even in animation, they remove the rear-view mirror.

Right. Well, going back to the origins of your animation work, apparently you and your partner were doing ‘odd jobs.’ Like, what kind of ‘odd jobs’ do you do, when you’re getting ready to create series?

Odd jobs? I’m not sure what —

Like at Cartoon Network. In part of your bio, I’m just wondering: What are the ‘odd jobs’ at Cartoon Network? That’s kind of a cool thing.

Oh, at Cartoon Network! We were in charge of the tape library, and then we started doing interstitial programming for little kids, like ages two to five — that were little hand puppets with googly eyes. We did that for a couple of years. We did a live-action morning show with Carrot Top for a year. It was a real mixed bag.

Are there certain protocols for working with Carrot Top?

[Adam laughs heartily.]

There — uh — yeah — although I don’t know if ‘protocols’ is the right word. It was (Adam gives this considerable thought) an interesting experience — I’ll put it that way. He’s an extremely nice guy, but the production was a bit of a mess.

I see you’ve got Cassius & Clay in development, and that’s a brand new headline. What can you say about it?

It’s sort of a Butch and Sundance meets Mad Max meets Thelma ane Louise meets Lucy and Ethel [laughs]. It’s set in the post-apocalyptic mountains of North Carolina, where cannibals are roaming the countryside in souped-up diesel vehicles — and the non-cannibal people —

(We call ourselves ‘vegetarians,’ I want to interject. But I don’t.)

— have retreated to the walled cities of former NASCAR racetracks, and these two women — Cassius and Clay — make their living as scavengers slash bandits slash gamblers slash screw-ups. We’re working on the pilot right now, we have an amazing cast, and we’re very excited about it. Megan Ganz [Community, Modern Family] — an extremely talented writer — wrote the pilot with me. We’re seeing good things.

Cool. Does it present challenges that you haven’t met before? Or are there some things that you’ve learned along the way that are going to make this production easier?

Hopefully we will learn from our — [laughs] — our catalogue of mistakes, and learning bumps along the way. There are always ways to improve the production, but that’s on the technical side — and I don’t understand how our animators do what they do — I just know they make it look beautiful. And on the writing side, that end of things, basically we write as funny a script as we can, and use that as — I think Harold Ramis said the script is always the worst case scenario. And then turn it over to our wonderful voice cast [which includes Kaitlin Olson, Susan Sarandon, and J.B. Smoove], and let them make it much better.

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Caption contest?

Okay, this master class thing, I’m a little stuck on this. What if you get the question: ‘Where do you get your ideas from?’ (I’m not sure whether or not Adam infers that I left that preposition dangling ironically — but hey, young journalists: Take risks!)

Sometimes it’s the news, sometimes it’s old movies, sometimes it’s an episode of The Six Million Dollar Man. Sometimes they just come while you’re tinkering on a motorcycle, or falling asleep — they actually come quite often, falling asleep. And I keep meaning to have a note pad on the bedside table, but I always forget. So there could be some real gems that I’ve just forgotten to write down.

(I praise the current state of recording gadgetry — come on, man! you make a spy show! — and Adam concurs.)

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Adam will be there to answer your questions!

Okay, and the other question that always gets asked at panels: ‘What advice do you have for young creative people who are just starting out?’

You know, I would say: Make whatever your idea is. Go ahead and do it as cheaply as possible. And put it on YouTube — it has really changed the game. They used to say you have to move to Los Angeles, and get a Los Angeles phone number and an agent, and blah-blah-blah. But I really think those days are behind us, and now there are people at networks whose whole job is just to scour YouTube for up and coming talent. And we’ve had animators leave us to go on to bigger and better things because they did a short animated piece, and put it on YouTube, and ended up with millions of hits — and then the next thing you know, the agents are beating down their door. It’s amazing: more people than those watching Archer will watch, whatever, a cat falling down the stairs.

(I cite our society’s collapse into the intellectual cold war of LOLCats. Then I am strangely inspired to ask Mr. Reed his feelings on the contrast between YouTube and Vimeo — which not unreasonably inspires a puzzled chuckle, so we wrap up.)

Since you know so much about feature films, do you want to expand into that area at some point?

I would love to! The trick is to get somebody to let me do that. Or to trick some studio into paying me to write a movie for them.

Solidarity, brother.

Images courtesy of FX / Adam Reed

Official Site: Archer

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One Tree Hill’s Cast and Creator Reveal Where Their Characters Would Be Now

It has been 13 years since One Tree Hill first changed our lives to the tune of Gavin DeGraw’s “I Don’t Wanna Be” in 2003, but it seems like just yesterday that we were laughing…




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LEGO Creator Expert Fairground Mixer with $30 Walmart Gift Card

LEGO Creator Expert Fairground Mixer with Walmart Gift Card


LEGO Creator Expert Fairground Mixer: Fair toy includes 12 minifigures: a juggling man on stilts, dunk tank lady, strong man challenger, ticket lady, truck driver, ride operator, 2 women, 2 girls, 2 boys and a queasy man who tried the mixer one too many times Features working Fairground Mixer ride with crank operation, 2 transport trucks, high striker and dunk tank LEGO Fairground Mixer includes glow-in-the-dark elements Mixer truck has opening doors, windshield wipers and removable roof to access interior with bed and TV Accessory truck holds ticket booth, high-striker and dunk tank Accessories include: ice cream, popsicle, lime green cherries, teddy bear, juggling pins and a large and small mallet for the high-striker Easily upgrade the Mixer ride with LEGO Power Functions motors (not included) Enjoy the fun of the fair LEGO Creator Fairground Mixer ride unfolded measures 17″L (45cm) x 12″W (31cm) x over 11″H (30cm) Number of pieces: 1746 Model# 10244 Basic Blue Walmart Gift Card: Easy to Use For purchases at Walmart.com and in U.S. Walmart stores For purchases by SAM’S Club members in U.S. SAM’S Club stores and at Samsclub.com In stores, present the Walmart gift card at checkout Online, enter gift card number and PIN (on back of gift card) during checkout. The PIN provides secure online shopping. As you make purchases, the gift card amount decreases. Add to gift card balance anytime in a Walmart store. Check card balance in stores or online More Information Walmart Gift Cards have no fees and never expire Not returnable or refundable for cash except in states where required by law For orders of 25 gift cards or more, or 0 and higher, we’ll send you an email about activating the Basic Blue cards Gift envelopes are not included or available for Walmart gift card purchases By purchasing this Basic Blue Walmart gift card, you agree to Shopping Cards Terms and Conditions More about gift cards

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‘The 100’ Goes Dark In A Good Way: Season 2 Secrets From The CW Show’s Creator

“I didn’t see that coming.”

I said that to myself more than once during the first three episodes of “The 100,” which returns Wednesday on The CW.

The good news is, those shocks weren’t gratuitous or unsatisfying, and they weren’t merely there to shine a light on whatever wild plot turn had arisen in this brisk tale of post-apocalyptic survival.

No, what surprised me was how dark “The 100” was willing to go.

You’d have thought I learned my lesson during the show’s energetic first season, when “The 100” regularly transgressed whatever I thought of as “the rules” of The CW.

Everyone is quite attractive on “The 100” — some rules can never be broken — but that appears to be the only inviolate law of the network, which currently airs a large number of shows I just cannot quit (“Arrow,” “The Flash,” “Supernatural,” “Jane the Virgin“).

It isn’t just about the abs on these programs; it’s about the aspiration. Through all of their ups and downs (and there have been many peaks and valleys on “Supernatural,” which is about to air its 200th episode), these shows present characters, relationships and moral dilemmas that hold my interest week to week. That’s more than I can say for approximately 87 percent of the tepid new broadcast network dramas that have turned up in the last few fall seasons.

You could almost say that The CW is broadcast-network television’s boutique cable brand: The stakes are lower and it’s able to take more chances, and in recent years, its smarter gambits have paid off. While the bigger, richer broadcast networks turn increasingly toward bland formulas, “noisy” concepts and ill-advised star vehicles, The CW has quietly stuck to its knitting, churning out solid and enjoyable shows that end up giving me me more hope about humanity than an assorted six pack of network crime procedurals.

“The 100” is by far the network’s darkest show, but this addictive drama doesn’t forget to supply the adventure element as well. (“The 100” does for running through forests what “Doctor Who” does for sprinting down spaceship corridors.) It doesn’t have the bucks of bigger networks, so it has, of late, focused on smart casting and fresh, energized takes on familiar forms.

So, as you might have guessed, I am not here to make a claim for the innate originality of “The 100.” Like a crash survivor cannibalizing his or her ship, “The 100” takes components from the standard Y.A. and sci-fi toolkits and assembles them into a sturdy, efficient narrative. But like Syfy’s “Defiance” — another pulpy, enjoyable serial that unashamedly deploys its share of sci-fi and Western tropes and has a number of game, charismatic actors at its core — “The 100” doesn’t look away from the deeper questions embedded in its narrative.

“The 100” — a figure that originally described the number of teen survivors plunked down a century after Earth’s nuclear apocalypse — continues to tell the story of several factions of adults and teens trying to stay alive under desperate circumstances. Hence the occasional harshness and even extreme brutality on display, but this is no surprise to those who witnessed the torture and murders that occurred in Season 1. The good news is, this show truly embraces the characters’ impossible moral dilemmas without ever lapsing into lazy cynicism or predictable despair, and extreme actions are given the moral weight they’re due.

Though Earth is now habitable, more or less, if some are going to live, then others have to die, and these characters ask themselves who and what is worth dying for without bogging down the narrative with overdoses of morose self-pity. Sure, the drama has some convenient twists and a few believability-stretching moments, but I’m willing to give “The 100” the benefit of the doubt because its cast is used well, its pacing is crisp and it’s more morally adventurous than a lot of shows with far greater resources.

The survival game has changed this season: More adults have arrived on the scene and they have their own ideas about how to impose “order” on the young people — and others — who are roaming the surprisingly picturesque post-apocalyptic territories. The grown-ups often think they know best, but more often than not, Clarke Griffin (Eliza Taylor) is not having any of it.

Taylor is admirably committed to conveying Clarke’s unbreakable will, which sometimes comes off as almost unreasonable stubbornness. But Clarke’s skepticism about her new situation ends up being understandable, and her resistance is one of the most attractive elements of “The 100.” These kids have a chance to literally remake the world, and Clarke and her cohorts Bellamy (Bob Morley), Finn (Thomas McDonell), Octavia (Marie Avgeropoulos) and Raven (Lindsey Morgan) do not want to re-make their parents’ mistakes.

It’s fairly bold of “The 100” to take a narrative that’s relatively similar to “The Walking Dead” and put a teen girl at the center of it (and as is the case with “The Good Wife,” The CW show would actually support a reading of it as a critique of the differences between male and female leadership styles). As Alyssa Rosenberg has pointed out, even on prestige dramas, young women often “function as built-in critics of the behavior of the adults.” Though Eliza is clearly at the center of this story, many of the younger characters on “The 100” are turning into credible leaders. As Bellamy, Bob Morley has been a terrific asset to the show since it began, and through sheer force of will, Bellamy’s sister Octavia has become one of my favorite TV badasses. There’s a Season 2 scene in which Octavia overpowers a much larger character and the moment should have been preposterous, but Avgeropoulos sold the hell out of it.

There’s a lot for the young folk to critique on “The 100,” but there are not many cartoonish villains to be found (and the show makes good use of skilled adult actors like Paige Turco and Raymond J. Barry). On lesser dramas, hiring a parade of “Battlestar Galactica” actors might bring up uncomfortable questions about what a show is lacking, but on “The 100,” the presence of “BSG” alums drive home the central parallel between that great show and this more modest yet very enjoyable one.

As Adama and Roslin taught us, those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

HuffPost TV spoke to “The 100” executive producer Jason Rothenberg about what fans can expect from the second season. I don’t consider what’s below to be particularly spoiler-y. There are hints about what’s coming, but trust me, you won’t see a lot of it coming.

Last time we talked, you couldn’t tell me how many episodes would be in Season 2, but now we know it’s 16. How do you feel about that number?

I love that number. Thirteen was hard to do. Sixteen is going to be harder because it’s just the sheer number [of episodes in total]. I don’t know how people do 22 episodes and make them good. In a serialized adventure like this, that’s too much. You can’t have every episode be good. At some point, the most important part of my job is quality control. Last year, we were able to do what I think was a very strong 13-episode season. This year, we’re going to do a little more, but it’s not so much more that it’s going to kill me and make it so that [the attitude would be], “Eh, that’s good enough.”

When we talked before [before and after the Season 1 finale], you said you wanted to get into more character moments and the characters’ pasts, so I would think more episodes would give you time to do that. I also think about the fact that you have so many groups and factions now — you just probably need more room for that.

“I wouldn’t say it’s a new show, but it’s very different.”Yeah, so far a lot story time in the first couple of episodes has been taken up with that. We’re almost re-establishing what the show is. I wouldn’t say it’s a new show, but it’s very different. We’re establishing new sets. Usually, in a Season 2, you go back to your same locations and same sets. This is totally new. We’ve got no Ark, for the most part. We’ve got Mount Weather, which we spent a ton of money on and it’s amazing. We’re going to live there for quite a bit of story. That’s a new world. And that’s really hard on production, by the way. You don’t have the time or the money that you have with a pilot.

On top of that, you are shooting outside a lot, and the weather around Vancouver can be so rainy and unpredictable.

It’s great, though. I’m in my nice office in Santa Monica, so I can’t really complain, but the worse the weather is, the better the show tends to look.

Is there a dividing line in the season — like, a first bunch and then the show comes back in the new year and airs a bunch more?

The good thing about last year was that we did 13 episodes in a row. This year, we’re on in the fall, so unfortunately there are some natural breaks for Thanksgiving and Christmas. But in the [writers’] room, we break stories so there’s a big [episode] right before the first break and a big one right before the second break. The bigger episodes will unfold like that. And then I think we run through eight in a row at the end. There’s a huge [development in] Episode 5. And there’s a story point [later in the season] that’s going to really blow people’s minds.

Given where everyone’s starting in Season 2, it sounds like there will be a lot of new recurring characters.

Yes, there will be new people who will be with us for a while. The fun thing is, we’re building out all these universes — Mount Weather, the camp where the Ark fell — that’s our main ground set this year. It’s unbelievable how big the ship is. We built the drop ship last year, but this is a section of the Ark. It’s huge.

The thing that Abby and Kane climbed out of at the end of Season 2 — that’s a different section. It broke apart and they were looking for other survivors, and they came across this section that is more intact. Over the season, that [large section of the Ark on the ground] becomes like “Deadwood” with a space ship in the middle of it. It’s like a Western town. They build a bar and a hospital and all of that.

What’s been the most fun about the second season so far?

There are so many new people on the ground, so we get to have scenes with actors who have never worked together. There are some really big reunions coming up.

I’m sure you can’t say when it will be, but the Abby-Clarke reunion will be a big deal.

That’ll be a really long-awaited moment for them and for the audience too. It’s going to be crazy because she’s so different now. They’re both very different from those two women who last saw each other in the teaser of the pilot episode. We did a flashback of them together in Episode 3 [in the first season], but [actors Paige Turco, who plays Clarke’s mother, Abby, and Eliza Taylor] have not worked together since then.

Obviously the show has a very active online community and you interact with them a lot. Do you ever think, “What will the fans think?” when you’re laying out where the show will go?

I’ve never been influenced by anyone saying [what they want]. If [a fan idea] is a great idea, I would do it, but I’m not going to take the pulse of the audience before I do anything. You’ve got to surprise people.

I will assume you know that people are really into Linctavia.

That’s a relationship with that actually has some real weight in the show, because it’s about different cultures. The whole thing this season is about turning people’s views on the Grounders. The Grounders are actually not the monolithic bad guys. When I say the season is about reunions, it’s also about unions. Groups that hate each other and are at war with each other need to make alliances in order to defeat the bigger bad that may be out there.

I wanted to ask a couple of those before I let you go. Here’s one: Where did Lincoln get his tattoos?

The Grounders actually tattoo themselves. It’s sort of based on Native American culture [and many] ancient cultures — tattooing is a really old art form. They’re all hand done. One tattoo that actually isn’t a tattoo is — they mark themselves for every kill. They burn a little bump into their backs. Lincoln has that field of bumps on his back. And they could tell you [who each person was]. It’s a way not to sort of glamorize the kill but to memorialize the person that died.

We’re going to meet a character this year named Indra who’s a very high-ranking Grounder who’s got [a lot of them]. They don’t fit on her back, they spill down her arm.

Will we learn Lincoln’s last name?

No. I don’t know if he has a last name, honestly. I think if they have last names, it’s more like, “Of the Woods.” It’s more a geographic designation.

“The 100” airs Wednesday at 9:00 p.m. ET on The CW, and the first season of the show arrives Wednesday on Netflix.
Arts – The Huffington Post
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‘Black-ish’ Creator Kenya Barris Defines New Show And Responds To Critics

This fall, ABC will add more diversity to its slate of programming with the new family sitcom “black-ish.” Starring Anthony Anderson, Tracee Ellis Ross and Laurence Fishburne, and executive produced by Larry Wilmore and “America’s Next Top Model” co-creator Kenya Barris, the half-hour comedy series takes a look at one man’s determination to establish a sense of cultural identity for his modern African-American family in suburban California.

Some critics have questioned whether the show, which premieres Sept. 24, will resonate with ABC’s viewers. But Barris hopes that “black-ish” will translate as an applicable lesson on race relations and cultural assimilation in today’s America.

During a recent interview with The Huffington Post, Barris opened up about the creation of “black-ish,” and offered his thoughts on the importance of the show’s airing amid passionate discussions about race in Ferguson, Missouri and elsewhere.

How would you define “black-ish”?

I would say it’s an adjective, and I would even say it’s a dynamic adjective. I think some of the controversy has been around the idea that some people think that we’re trying to define what “black” is, and it couldn’t be further from the truth. I think it’s a really inclusive word much less than an exclusionary word, in terms of [how] it really speaks towards the homogenized society we’re living in today … If you look at the main character, Andre Johnson [played by Anderson], from his eyes, he’s raising kids and a family in a time where he looks around at his kids and he feels like their idea of being “black,” from what he remembers growing up, is different from what it was for him…

And I say that in terms of how he looks at his kids, and his kids are at a Macklemore concert or skateboarding. And so the ideology of what he saw, growing up, to be black, there’s a little bit of a filtered, subtracted, watered-down version of that. And so they’re kind of “black-ish” in that version. But then at the same time, he looks around and sees that there’s an additive version when he looks and sees a lot of the cultural impact that black culture has had on what America is today, [how it] has spread beyond our particular race. He sees, Kim Kardashian is “black-ish.” Dirk Nowitzki has a “black-ish” style of playing basketball. And he looks and feels like culture, in general, is at a place where it reached this sort of convergence, where it’s all become sort of this one thing, and we’ve all sort of merged into this big homogenized pot of where we’re [borrowing] from each other. And everyone else, in his eyes, has become a little bit more “black-ish.” So it works both ways.

Did you experience any difficulties or hurdles while shopping the pilot to networks?

We were really lucky. I’ve sold a bunch of pilots, and this time, when I did this pilot, I was like, I didn’t care who bought it. I was kind of like, “This time I’m going to do it honestly. I’m going to try to say, ‘I’ll make the family white or I’ll just make it about a family who just happens to be black.'” And for some reason, sometimes when you just have to go from a purer place, it hits harder. I went to a bunch of production companies and we decided to do it with Laurence Fishburne’s company, because Laurence said he’d be in it. And based on his own life, he immediately got the story … And we sold it everywhere we pitched. I’ll be honest — we got offers in the room almost everywhere we pitched. It was sort of a competitive situation. And we were actually going to go with FX, because we knew they would let us do what we wanted to do. But I’m so glad that we made the decision we did going with ABC, because they have really stepped up and [done] this show where every week we’re like, “They’re letting us do this?” [laughs]

How important was it for you to highlight modern-day situations in which race relations take place — for example, how African-Americans manage to navigate through the dynamics of office politics?

It’s the fundamental premise of the whole show for me. Dave Chappelle has this great joke of how he doesn’t [like] this sort [of] racism in Hollywood where it’s behind closed doors. He likes that old Southern, “fine-brewed to perfection” racism where it’s just in your face. And it’s something more dangerous when it’s not as malicious or done on purpose, when it’s more institutional. Because they don’t get that they’re doing it, and it’s not being done on purpose. And I want to shed light on it, because it works both ways … There’s sort of a duality and a counterintuitiveness to the main character’s problem, because he wants the promotion, but he’s mad that they gave him the promotion of the “Urban Division.” But like his wife says, “You’re mad that they gave you the Urban Division because you think they gave it to you because you’re black. But if they gave the Urban Division to someone white, you’d be mad that they didn’t give it to someone black.”

There’s a counterintuitive [aspect] and a duality to that type of thinking that we deal with every day […] and I want to shed a light on that. I think that this show is a test study. We don’t get a lot of opportunities like this. Unfortunately, if it works, it becomes […] somewhat of an understood standard. But if it doesn’t work, it becomes, “Oh well, that experiment failed. Back to the norm.” And that’s scary.

What are your thoughts on the relevance of the show airing on network television in the midst of the Michael Brown shooting investigation and other race-related news items?

It’s weird. As the pilot had just gotten picked up for a series, the [Donald] Sterling thing came out. And we were like, “Yooo, this is crazy!” And then as that was happening you had the guy in New York [Eric Garner] get strangled […] and it’s like, this is still a part of the world that we’re in. And people want to say, “Well, [President] Barack [Obama] is this…” I think in some aspects, Barack has shot us 25, 30 years into the future. But at the same time he has given people the ability to say, “Well now you don’t have anything else to complain about … We’re no longer a country that has any type of biases. Because look, we have a black president.” But that’s not the case. Ninety-five percent of the biases against Barack, there’s a lot of that that comes from a place that’s saying, “I personally don’t agree with him because he’s black.” It has nothing to do with his policies, but more of the policies coming from a black man.

So I think it’s a really important time for this show to air. I think that I am not trying to get on a pulpit and preach. This is comedy. At its heart, it’s a family comedy. It’s not a political show … We wanted to make this show the same way for me, growing up, “The Cosby Show” was like, “Oh my God! I want that to be my family.” We wanted to make this show aspirational and we wanted to build off of what Dr. Cosby did in a really positive way.

“black-ish” premieres Sept. 24 at 9:30pm EST on ABC.

WATCH:



Comedy – The Huffington Post
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‘Wonder Twins’ Movie Poster Revealed To Be Fake By Creator

A poster surfaced mid-November last year touting a “Wonder Twins” movie coming in 2014 courtesy of Warner Bros. Supposedly starring couple Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher as the sibling leads, rumors of a viral marketing attempt linked to the upcoming “Entourage” movie made its rounds, threaded by the HBO show’s inclusion of an “Aquaman” movie and the film’s 2014 release date. However, Marc Tyler Nobleman, author of books on the creators of “Superman” and “Batman,” has debunked this theory, proving the “Wonder Twins” movie to be nothing more than a well-crafted hoax.

Participating in a conversation on the BatPodcast, Nobleman discovered that his host, Pat Evans, was the man behind the movie’s poster, and reversed the roles to get all the details. According to Evans, he created the poster for a bit of fun in response to the onslaught of superhero movies throughout the past few years (that will absolutely continue through 2014), deciding that the “Wonder Twins” would be a most “preposterous” film for anyone to make.

“They were perfect, because it was just unbelievable enough a concept that it could be true, if that makes sense,” Evans said. “’So crazy it might work’ kind of logic. And Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher were kind of the clincher because they are in the media a lot now as a real-life couple. So it added that extra layer of ‘huh?’”

When asked if he liked the Wonder Twins, Evans joked, “Who doesn’t love the Wonder Twins? Seriously. Just ask my kids, Zan and Jayna.”

You can read the rest of the interview on Nobleman’s blog.

Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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