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Why the Quentin Tarantino Star Trek Movie will Probably Never Happen!

Charmaine Blake

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Tarantino is eyeing the Trek franchise — but he could be about to bury it.

Image: Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock

Captain, I suggest we go to Red Alert. We’re detecting signs of a very bad idea just off the starboard bow. 

Famed director Quentin Tarantino has apparently set himself on a collision course with the Star Trek franchise, according to a report by Deadline. The Hollywood trade site says Tarantino is keen to direct a Trek film and has discussed his idea with Trek producer J.J. Abrams; the pair are reportedly at the stage of assembling a writer’s room.

Is this likely to actually pan out in the long run? Possibly. Tarantino does know his Trek, and he and Abrams have worked together before (Tarantino guest-starred on Alias). Should it? Hell no.

Everyone has their own take on Tarantino, an unusually divisive filmmaker. Mine has cooled over the years as the director has done little but double down on his “blood-soaked revenge played for tense laughs” trope. I loved Reservoir Dogs when I first saw it; by the time I saw its warehouse standoff remade in cowboy cosplay as Hateful 8, I rolled my eyes.  

But the one thing you can’t deny about Tarantino is that the worldview revealed through his movies is profoundly cynical. Might always makes right; if the good guys win, it’s because they were more violent than the bad guys and indulged their basest instincts. 

Think of the scalp-taking soldiers of Inglourious Basterds — the lesson from that movie is torture is justified if the subject is sick and evil. Now imagine men in Federation uniforms scalping the Klingons.

This is total “darkest timeline” stuff. We’re officially in the mirror universe. 

If there is a mindset further opposite of that of Gene Roddenberry, the man who created Star Trek, I can’t think of it. 

Roddenberry was a profoundly hopeful believer in the essential goodness of man. Star Trek was founded in the notion that utopia is inevitable, given enough time. By the 23rd century of the show, disease, poverty, racism and all internal human strife has disappeared. 

Roddenberry was a profoundly hopeful believer in the essential goodness of man

Replicators provide everything we could want, so money is unnecessary. There’s nothing left to fight over. That’s why the show and its heirs have almost always focused on the final frontier and humanity’s desire to come to terms with “strange new life” — because back on Earth, life is wonderfully perfect and dull.  

Roddenberry took this notion too far in his later years, and the writers of Star Trek: The Next Generation chafed under his dictum that there shouldn’t ever be any conflict among the crew of the Enterprise. Still, the desire was to make the show a beacon of hope and reason, and this desire led to one of the best series on television. 

Picard and his crew were truly noble, a word that seems to have fallen out of favor since then. They were thoughtful. They were just. They did things by the book and you could look up to them for that. 

Star Trek is at its best when it embraces that nobility, and divides fans when it doesn’t. After Abrams rebooted Star Trek, in the appropriately named Into Darkness, we saw a Captain Kirk whose traditional hot-headedness had spilled over into smiting his enemies for the sake of smiting. 

The almost-as-disappointing Star Trek Beyond handed the franchise to Justin Lin, who took it even further into action movie territory. Tarantino would seem to confirm the downward trend, drowning Star Trek in buckets of green blood. 

Engage!

Image: SNAP/REX/Shutterstock

But is that really what we need in 2017? When the planet seems further away than ever from a utopian future, don’t we need visions of that utopian future more urgently than ever? When the most powerful man in the world is a study in lawlessness, Tarantino’s self-interested anti-heroes are a galaxy away from the kind of idealism we miss in our movies.

Perhaps Tarantino wants to try something new; perhaps he wants to surprise us. Trek does have a way of rehabilitating cynical Hollywood men at the midlife crisis stage; just look at Seth Macfarlane’s surprisingly earnest Next Generation homage, The Orville

But really, if Paramount and Abrams really want to try something new and edgy, how about this radical idea: pick an actual woman director for the next film. Given that Tarantino admitted that he ignored many direct warning signs about Harvey Weinstein for decades, he is doubly the wrong man at the wrong time for the right franchise. 

Star Trek can help usher in a utopia of representation behind the scenes as well as on the screen. Please, Paramount, make it so. 

Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/12/04/star-trek-tarantino-movie/

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Picture of Tom Hardy as Al Capone in Upcoming Movie Fonzo

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Infamous mob boss Al Capone has an iconic look, and somehow Tom Hardy is nailing it perfectly.

A recent picture of Hardy surfaced Wednesday that shows the actor in full Capone dress and makeup for his role as the gangster in the upcoming biographical movie Fonzo (which stems from Capone’s full first name, Alphonse — not to be confused with Alfonse).

It’s almost hard to believe that’s Hardy under there.

This new picture comes a few months after Fonzo director Joshua Trank and Hardy himself shared a couple photos of Hardy as old Scarface on Instagram. Take a look:

 
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‘Thailand Cave Rescue: The Movie’ May Be Coming To A Screen Near You

Charmaine Blake

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“It hasn’t even been 24 hours since rescuers pulled the last boy of the trapped Wild Boars junior soccer team from Thailand’s Tham Luang Cave — but there’s already talk of immortalizing their incredible survival and rescue story on the silver screen.

Pure Flix Entertainment, an Arizona-based Christian film studio, said it’s seeking the movie rights to the harrowing mission to rescue the soccer team and their 25-year-old coach from the flooded cave.

“The bravery and heroism I’ve witnessed is incredibly inspiring, so, yes, this will be a movie for us,” Pure Flix co-founder and CEO Michael Scott, who is partly based in Thailand, told the Hollywood Reporter of the studio’s intentions.

No one will likely be surprised by the studio’s swift interest. Social media has been abuzz for days with chatter about the inevitable “Thailand Cave Rescue: The Movie.”

Pure Flix’s co-founder David White told the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday that the studio had already started talking to…….”

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/thailand-cave-rescue-movie-tham-luang-cave_us_5b45bcc4e4b07aea7545a157

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These tweets Show the Backlash to Casting Scarlett Johansson in a Trans Role

Charmaine Blake

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Did you hear about the latest Scarlett Johansson casting debacle?

Here’s how a good portion of the internet reacted to the news:

In case you missed it, here’s a brief recap:

ScarJo was recently cast as Dante “Tex” Gill, a real-life transgender man who oversaw a massage parlor and sex work business in Pittsburgh in the ’70s and ’80s. A new film about his life, currently titled “Rub & Tug,” is being co-produced by Johansson — and, conveniently enough, stars her as well.

But as the previous tweet not-so subtly suggested, many people aren’t thrilled about Johansson, who is cisgender, portraying Gill, who was transgender. And rightfully so.

But wait! Before you argue, “Well, isn’t that what acting is all about — pretending to be somebody you’re not?” hear what a few trans actors had to say about the news. Because if anyone should be heard on this issue, it’s them.

Jamie Clayton, who starred in “Sense8,” wasn’t thrilled.

Trans actors don’t get nearly the same opportunity as cis artists, she argued, which gets at the heart of the issue.

Trace Lysette, known for her role in “Transparent,” also made a similar argument.

If she were getting a seat at the table, things would be different. But those seats are reserved for cis women.

It makes matters worse when those same cis actors are celebrated for playing trans characters when actual trans actors never even had a shot, Lysette continued in a follow-up tweet.

They make a great point.

Very few transgender characters make it onto the big screen, period. But even when they do, those characters are often defined solely by their gender identities, fall into harmful stereotypes, or serve no purpose to the plot other than to be the butt of transphobic jokes.

In recent years, more fully realized trans characters made it into Hollywood narratives. But when they do, too often they’re still portrayed by cisgender actors, like Matt Bomer, Jeffrey Tambor — and now Scarlett Johansson.

As Lysette and Clayton noted, it’s still rare (read: basically impossible) for trans actors to be cast in cisgender roles. So it’s understandably infuriating when the few opportunities that do arise for them are snatched away by cis Hollywood heavyweights who no doubt have a plethora of scripts to choose from.

Beyond affecting the opportunities for trans actors, though, these casting decisions have real-world ramifications as well.

When cisgender actors are cast in transgender roles, it perpetuates the harmful myth that transgender people are simply “in drag” — that they’re really just pretending or performing, GLAAD’s Nick Adams argued in The Hollywood Reporter:

“Hollywood is having a very difficult time letting go of the idea that putting a male actor in a dress, wig and makeup is an accurate portrayal of a transgender woman. … It’s yet another painful reminder that, in the eyes of so many people, transgender women are really just men. That message is toxic and dangerous.”

It’s a notion, he argued, that attempts to justify bigoted bathroom laws and fuels violence against the transgender community.

Casting decisions on Hollywood sets do make a difference in real life, whether we believe it or not.

But maybe there’s a way out of this latest casting mess.

First, Johansson can apologize for her incredibly insensitive response to the criticism, as well as her defensive alignment with cis actor Jeffrey Tambor’s role as a trans woman in “Transparent” (remember, he allegedly sexually harassed then-assistant Trace Lysette).

Then she can take YouTuber Grace Randolph’s idea and run with it:

“I hope the Scarlett Johansson controversy doesn’t keep the amazing story of Jean Marie Gill aka Dante ‘Tex’ Gill from being told. If Johansson was smart, she’d find a new director, take the role of Tex’s girlfriend Cynthia, and give a trans actor a big break.”

That’s not a bad idea, really. Hopefully someone in Hollywood is listening.

Read more: http://www.upworthy.com/these-tweets-nailed-why-casting-scarlett-johansson-in-a-trans-role-is-not-so-great

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