Archive for December, 2016

Happy New Year


Happy New Year 2017!!

Now that it has hit midnight, I want to wish all of you a very Happy New Year.

I hope you enjoyed your holiday celebrations and will have a great time today and throughout the first week of the New Year.


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As we have all seen, both in the entertainment world, and in the very real and scary world for which we live in, there have been some very interesting, exciting and unpredictable events that have taken place in 2016.

We have all had good and bad times throughout the year, we can all rejoice in the great entertainment these medium – television, movies, music and books – have provided.

Have a wonderful New Year!

PS: Thank you all so very much for visiting my site. I hope you will continue to visit as often as you can.

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Trying to figure out what to watch tonight? Be it new episodes of the TV season, reairs of cable series or a movie, here are some suggestions:

Happy New Year’s Eve

5:50 PM:
A Knight’s Tale movie on Cinemax

5:53 PM:
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 (animated) movie on FXM

6 PM:
My Christmas Dream movie on Hallmark Channel (Encore)
Casino Royale movie on Showtime2

6:30 PM:
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)

6:45 PM:
McFarland, USA movie on Encore

7 PM:
Legally Blonde movie on E!
The Christmas Secret movie on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries
The Terminator movie on Viceland

7:30 PM:
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)

8 PM:
A Nutcracker Christmas movie on Hallmark Channel (Encore)
Legally Blonde movie on E!
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King movie on TNT

8:30 PM:
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)

9 PM:
Ghostbusters (original) movie on BBC America
50 First Dates movie on Comedy Central
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince movie on Freeform
The Christmas Card movie on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries
The Shawshank Redemption movie on Spike

9:30 PM:
The Terminator movie on Viceland

10 PM:
A Dream of Christmas movie on Hallmark Channel (Encore)
13 Going on 30 movie on FXM
Deadpool movie on HBO


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Much like the Faces of 2016, there are always entertainers of note to be on the look-out for in the new year or those who made great waves throughout the current year who will, undoubtedly, be big stars in the new year.

Here are my predictions for the faces of 2017 (in no particular order):


1. Malachi Kirby – The British actor landed the plum role of Kunta Kinte in the History Channel remake of the classic telefilm Roots by author Alex Haley. He will follow that up with roles in the upcoming box office film Fallen based on the book of the same name by author Lauren Kate and he will provide his voice to the video game Squadron 42.


2. Stephan James – Stephan appeared as legendary Olympic athlete Jesse Owens in the box office film Race that was released in February of this year. Prior to that he was in the box office films When the Game Stands Tall and Selma; and he had a recurring role in the TV series L.A. Complex and Degrassi: The Next Generation. He will next be seen in the highly anticipated FOX event series Shots Fired that will air on FOX during mid-season of 2017.


3. Jacob Tremblay – Jacob is the young Canadian actor who appeared as Jack in the much-buzzed about box office film Room. Prior to that he had a role in the made-for-TV movie My Mother’s Future Husband. He has four box office films coming up in 2017, including Before I Wake with Thomas Jane and Kate Bosworth; Burn Your Maps with Vera Farmiga and Virginia Madsen; Wonder with Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson and The Book of Henry with Lee Pace and Naomi Watts.


4. Neel Sethi – He is the young Indian-American boy who landed the coveted role of Mowgli in the latest live action adaptation of The Jungle Book. This was his first acting role where he was selected out of a “cattle call” of 2,000 children who auditioned for the part.


5. Elena Kampouris – Elena landed the plum role of Paris, the daughter of Toula and Ian in My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2. She previously appeared in the short-lived TV series American Odyssey, starring alongside Sarah Wynter and Peter Facinelli. She will next be seen in the box office film Before I Fall based on the novel of the same name by Lauren Oliver.


6. Tori Anderson – Tori landed the lead role of Evie Covington in the new dramedy No Tomorrow, which debut in October on The CW and while the show will not be continuing beyond its original episode order, Tori is an up-and-comer. She previously had a short recurring role in Killjoys and was one of the regulars in Teen Nick drama Open Heart.


7. Adria Arjona – Adria will be seen as Dorothy Gale in the January 2017 debut of the much-buzzed about NBC drama Emerald City, which is a dark and twisted adaptation of the legendary Wizard of Oz tale. Prior to that she appeared in season two of True Detective. She will next be seen in Pacific Rim: Maelstrom and Life of the Party with Melissa McCarthy, Julie Bowen and Gillian Jacobs.


8. Auli’I Cravalho – Movie goers can hear Auli’I’s voice in the new animated film Moana, which was released in November. She was discovered by an Oahu casting agent who noticed her singing in a charity competition. She won the role of the latest Disney princess from hundreds of women in the pacific islands. In fact, she was the very last girl auditioned.


9. Maddie Bailio – Maddie is a talent Texan theatre student who landed the coveted role of Tracey Turnblad in Hairspray Live! which debuted on NBC earlier this month. She beat out over 1,000 other girls for the legendary role. This is her major first acting gig, but she is no stranger to stage work.


10. Sasha Lane – Sasha is a 19-year-old newcomer to acting who was spotted by writer-director Andrea Arnold among tens of thousands of students on Panama City beach. Arnold convinced Sasha to do an impromptu audition, which led to her being cast as Star in the box office film American Honey. She has three upcoming projects, including The Miseducation of Cameron Post with Chloe Grace Moretz and Shoplifters of the World with Joe Manganiello.


11. Joe Alwyn – This British-born actor landed the lead role in Ang Lee’s latest film Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, which hit theatre screens last month. Joe had never stepped in front of a camera before auditioning for this film. He will next be seen in the film The Sense of an Ending with Downton Abbey and Good Behavior actress Michelle Dockery and will later be seen alongside Gerard Butler in the thriller Keepers.


12. Millie Bobby Brown – Young actress Millie was born and raised in Spain before her family moved to Florida, and now she is the one of the stars of the much-buzzed-about Netflix fantasy horror drama Stranger Things; she played Eleven. Prior to this she appeared in the BBC series Intruders; she was young Alice in the short-lived TV series Once Upon a Time in Wonderland and she had guest roles in NCIS, Modern Family and Grey’s Anatomy.


13. Tom Holland – Tom is the latest British actor to take on an iconic American comic book character: Spider-Man. Filmgoers will recognize him from Captain America: Civil War and they will soon see him in the latest adaptation of the Marvel legend in the 2017 film Spider-Man: Homecoming and the 2018 Avengers: Infinity War. He also has two other films coming out – The Current War with Benedict Cumberbatch and Pilgrimage with Jon Bernthal and Richard Armitage. His previous work includes In the Heart of the Sea, The Impossible and the mini-series Wolf Hall.

Are there any actors or actresses who you think are the faces to watch in 2017? Please share.

TOMORROW: Closing Out 2016

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Trying to figure out what to watch tonight? Be it new episodes of the TV season, reairs of cable series or a movie, here are some suggestions:

6 PM:
A December Bride movie on Hallmark Channel (Encore)

6:30 PM:
Purple Rain movie on VH1

7 PM:
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets movie on Freeform
Dashing Through the Snow movie on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries

7:40 PM:
Furious 7 movie on Cinemax

8 PM:
Love You Like Christmas movie on Hallmark Channel (Encore)
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)
Red movie on TNT

9 PM:
Finding Father Christmas movie on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries (Encore)
Sleepy Hollow on FOX (Reair)
Sherlock on Masterpiece on PBS (Reair)
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)
Dirty Dancing movie on VH1

10 PM:
Christmas List movie on Hallmark Channel (Encore)
Sister Cities movie on Lifetime (Encore)
San Andreas movie on Cinemax
Red 2 movie on TNT


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As a young girl in August, there was Little League Baseball Championship to watch as the end of the summer dawned and school was about to start.

Depending on the summer, I would watch with family friends and we’d marvel at the twelve to thirteen year old boys who played baseball with heart.

(Photo Credit:  Brian Garfinkel/Getty Images)

Mo’ne Davis (Photo Credit: Brian Garfinkel/Getty Images)

In 2014, I watched again. That summer, the world met Mo’ne Davis, who was one of two girls in the final tournament.

Mo’ne Davis wowed the world, pitching a shut-out and getting a hit as a batter.

She turned heads and raised the bar about women in male-dominated sports.

Soon after that summer watching Mo’ne play with the boys, FOX had Pitch hit the small screen. What I feel in love with with Mo’ne Davis was given a few face: Ginny Baker [as portrayed by actress Kylie Bunbury.]

While Mo’ne played with pre-teen boys, Ginny Baker plays with the men. Men of Major League Baseball. It’s no easy task to be the lone girl in the room, testosterone all through the clubhouse.

What happens?

Ginny succeeds. It’s not easy, to be sure, but for a woman watching another woman play with the guys, getting there is the success.

Kylie Bunbury as Ginny Baker in Pitch

Kylie Bunbury as Ginny Baker in Pitch

As in most of my life, there are guys who don’t trust Ginny for her skill or her finesse, but as the end of the season closed, Ginny was so close to a no-hitter.

She was just like every other pitcher who had gone through a game without a hit.

In a world where life wants to throw lemons at everyone from left and right, Ginny Baker’s success showed the world that half the population isn’t lesser than these men who hit balls over three hundred feet and throw a ball over one hundred miles an hour.

Pitch is a show that allows women to finally see that in sports, we don’t just have to play with the other girls. Mo’ne Davis and Ginny Baker are two women (one real and one fictitious) who defy odds and make it clear that just maybe the glass ceiling’s ready to be smashed in every part of society.

The message of Pitch didn’t reach as many people as I’d like, but I still hope that the ratings are good enough for another season. Ginny’s recovery from her injury is too important (and too real for sports fans) to not root for her and hope for a longer narrative.

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On January 2, the two-hour series premiere of the new Freeform series Beyond will debut at 9 PM.

This new series is about Holden (Burkely Duffield), a young man who wakes up from a coma after 12 years and discovers new abilities that propel him into the middle of a dangerous conspiracy.

The cast includes Romy Rosemont (Glee).

Here is a trailer for Beyond:

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The following list highlights the actors and actresses on television and on the big screen who really caught viewers’ attention throughout this year. They appear in no particular order:


1. Brie Larson – Brie has been acting since she was a young girl eventually appearing in episodes of Raising Dad, United States of Tara and Community. But it was her Oscar-winning role in the independent film Room that put her on the map. Since then she has landed the role of Captain Marvel in the latest upcoming Avengers franchise film as well as the stand-alone Captain Marvel film. She will be seen in next year’s Kong: Skull Island movie alongside Tom Hiddleston along with the films The Glass Castle, Unicorn Store and Basmati Blues.


2. Connor Jessup – TV viewers will recognize him from his stand-out role as middle son Ben Mason on the long-running alien apocalypse series Falling Skies on TNT, but he really turned heads in the ABC anthology series American Crime.


3. Margot Robbie – She made a name for herself in Australian on the long-running soap opera Neighbours and then landed on the short-lived US series Pan Am. But it was her role in The Wolf of Wall Street that got her attention. She had a big year in 2016, appearing Whiskey Tango Foxtrot with Tina Fey, The Legend of Tarzan alongside Alexander Skarsgard and stealing the show as Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad. She has four films in the works for 2017, including a stand-alone Harley Quinn film.


4. Katy Mixon – Katy is well known to viewers of the CBS comedy Mike & Molly for her role of Victoria Flynn and she was one of the voice actors in the 2015 animated movie Minions; but she made a big move this year by landed the lead role in the new ABC comedy American Housewife, which was given a full season order in November by the network.


5. Gal Gadot – The Israeli born actress was not only a model and former Miss Israel, but she also served in the IDF, the military force of the State of Israel before landed the role of Gisele in the Fast and Furious franchise before landing the coveted role of Diana Prince aka Wonder Woman in the 2016 Batman vs. Superman movie as well as the long-awaited Wonder Woman film set to hit the big screen next year. She is also set to don the golden lasso and bullet-proof bracelets in two upcoming Justice League flicks.


6. Mahershala Ali – Avid TV viewers will recognize this talented actor from his role on the USA Network series The 4400 – when he used his screen name Mahershalalhashbaz Ali – but it has been his work in House of Cards, the movies Free State of Jones and Moonlight as well as the streaming series Marvel’s Luke Cage. He will also be seen in the December film Hidden Figures; and he has three films set to debut next year.


7. Haley Bennett – In 2007, Haley appeared as ditzy pop star Cora Corman in the film Music and Lyrics, but while she continued to appear in a number of movies over the years, it has been her roles in this year’s The Girl on the Train and The Magnificent Seven that put her on the map. She also has a role in the Warren Beatty-led film Rules Don’t Apply and has two big movies coming out next year.


8. Aja Naomi King – Aja has been a series regular on the much-buzzed about ABC drama How to Get Away With Murder for the past three TV seasons and then she landed the plum leading role of Cherry in the much-talked about feature film The Birth of a Nation. Before that she appeared in the short-lived shows Emily Owens M.D. and Black Box.


9. Felicity Jones – Felicity has been an actress since 1996, appearing in roles on the small and big screen, but it was her role in 2014 of The Theory of Everything that really got her attention. This year alone she has appeared alongside Tom Hanks in the film Inferno from Dan Brown, she has the lead role in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and she will appear in January’s film A Monster Calls.


10. Adele – She has been a powerful force – and voice – in the music world since her debut album hit shelves in 2008. She has won countless awards for her first two albums 19 and 21, but it was the release of her latest album 25 that really put her over the top. She had a huge tour during 2016 and four years after her last album, she has added even more awards to growing collection.


11. Tatiana Maslany – Tat, as she is known to her cast members, has been in the public eye since the BBC America series Orphan Black debuted in March of 2013 although she had quite a long resume before that. But it was in 2016 where she finally got her just reward: winning an Emmy Award for her complicated, multiple roles in the show.


12. Bridget Regan – She is the most ubiquitous actress of the year, appearing as deadly assassin Dottie Underwood in Marvel’s Agent Carter, tough as nails fighter Sasha Cooper on The Last Ship, criminal mastermind Sin Rostro on Jane the Virgin and most recently as Megan Hunt on Grey’s Anatomy.


13. Tobias Menzies – He is the most ubiquitous actor of the year, appearing in the fan favorite Starz series Outlander in the dual role of Frank Randall and 18th Century villain Black Jack Randall, he returned as Edmure Tully in Game of Thrones and he starred as Geoffrey Dromgoole alongside Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Laurie in the AMC mini-series The Night Manager. He will next star with Kate Beckinsale in January’s box office flick Underworld: Blood Wars.

Who are some of the faces from this year who caught your attention either on television, in music or in film? Please share.

TOMORROW: New Faces of 2017

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Trying to figure out what to watch tonight? Be it new episodes of the TV season, reairs of cable series or a movie, here are some suggestions:

6 PM:
A Christmas Detour movie on Hallmark Channel

6:40 PM:
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)

7 PM
The Imitation Game movie on Showtime2
The Mummy movie on Spike
Good Morning, Vietnam movie on TMC

7:35 PM:
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)

8 PM:
A Heavenly Christmas movie on Hallmark Channel (Encore)
DC’s Legends of Tomorrow on The CW (Reair)
Safe Haven movie on E!
The Dark Knight movie on USA Network
Legally Blonde movie on Oxygen

9 PM:
A Christmas To Remember movie on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries (Encore)
Supernatural on The CW (Reair)
Game of Thrones on HBO2 (Reair)
Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie on Starz
Born on the Fourth of July movie on TMC
Purple Rain movie on VH1

10 PM:
Scorpion on CBS (Reair)
The Blacklist on NBC (Reair)
Once Upon a Holiday movie on Hallmark Channel
Legally Blonde movie on Oxygen
Speed movie on POP
The Mummy Returns movie on Spike


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To many out there, Carrie Fisher is, and always will be, Princess Leia Organa, member of the Rebellion and General in the Resistance. She’s Leia to me (and will be for all time), but that was not where I first met Carrie Fisher.

As a young girl, impressionable and naive, there were few bands that were “kid” appropriate for long drives across California, or through Illinois and the Midwest. But there was Paul Simon. It wasn’t just “Graceland” that defined the days in the late 1980s and early 1990s, but the entire collective works. I was introduced to “Heart and Bones” about “one and one-half wandering Jews” and being curious, I learned that Carrie Fisher was the one-half Jew of the song.

From that point on, I have one thing in common with her. It was curious to me to know that a woman who was the child of celebrities found herself intertwined with other celebrities. And she sounded conflicted and determined in the song, even if I knew the relationship didn’t last.

But she was there and she inspired a heartfelt song.

A few years later, as a teen When Harry Met Sally entered my lexicon. It was grown-up (“I’ll have what she’s having” and that scene probably was my first introduction to the concept of an orgasm) and it was not just Harry and Sally that I fell in love with, but with Jess and Marie.

Marie is a supportive, strong friend, who manages to get her friend the best (and gets the best for herself too). Sure, Marie is complicated – no qualms about dating a married man – but she is the support for Sally in good times and bad.

Even if When Harry Met Sally is about Harry and Sally, Marie (and Fisher) steal the show in quiet ways.

Here – fighting over a wagon wheel coffee table – Marie is herself and still funny. (Others have already pointed out how good Marie’s lines are.)

This is the Carrie Fisher I want to remember. Strong, funny, complicated.


PS: While Carrie Fisher is symbolic for Hollywood, so too is her mother, Debbie Reynolds. Reynolds dying just a day and a half after her daughter is heartbreaking and I wish the Reynolds, Fisher and Lourd families well.

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