Tag Archives: Twilight

Anatomy of a Trailer – Burlesque

The way I see it, Burlesque, the upcoming movie / musical starring Christina Aguilera, in her big screen debut, will either be truly spectacular . . .

 . . . or ridiculously bad.

The film follows Ali (Aquilera), as she escapes from whatever podunk town she came from, and heads off to Hollywood with big dreams and little cash.

View from a dirty bus window.

She finds a job as a waitress at a struggling night club, called Burlesque Lounge, run by Tess (Cher).  And . . . well, I’ll let you see for yourself .  . .

:32 – “When you are putting on your makeup, it is like you’re an artist.  But instead of painting a canvas, you are painting a face.”

 . . . or, in Cher’s case, a face made of canvas.

So, after seeing Cher in this trailer, I’ve come to two conclusions: (1) She looks pretty good.  Her face really hasn’t changed that much since the 90’s . . .

(2) The reason Cher’s face hasn’t changed since the 90’s, is that it hasn’t moved since then.  Did you watch that scene where she was putting on her makeup?  I felt like I was watching an expert ventriloquist!

Bet you can’t guess which one is real?

:49 – “Great enthusiasm, terrible timing.”

It looks like Stanley Tucci will be playing the role of the “man behind the older woman” . . .

 and the “staunch supporter / behind the scenes mentor” of the younger one. 

It’s The Devil Wears Prada all over again.

:57 – Kristen Bell is in this movie!

I heart her, even when she plays mean and unlikeable characters . . .

  . . . and it seems like she will be playing one here too.

1:02 – “The question is, do you have the talent?  Because you’re on . . .”

Hey, that was Cam Gigandet!

What?  You don’t remember CAM?  Sure you do!  He was the douche responsible for Marissa Cooper’s death on The O.C.  . . .

 . . . and the douche who wanted to beat Sean Farris to a pulp in Never Back Down .  . .

 . . . and the douche who wanted to eat Bella in Twilight . . .

In fact, Cam’s “Douching Schedule” was SO uncompromising, that he rarely had time to put on a shirt . . .

 .  . . which is why I love him!

1:12 – “What happened to all the great dancers in L.A.?” 

             “They’re all Dancing with the Stars.

I think this was meant to be somewhat of an inside joke, as Dancing with the Stars’ Julianne Hough is said to have signed on to  this film.

It seems a little odd that they didn’t put her in the trailer, though.

1:17 – “What is she doing up there?”

The Genie in a Bottle dance, perhaps?

1:27 – “Nobody can tell you.  You gotta make me believe that you belong on that stage.  That it’s yours, and that nobody can take it from you.  Now you want to show me something?  Show me THAT!”

WOW, Cher, I’m so inspired now!

I might even start taking violin lessons — on a tiny violin, kind of like the one I heard playing in the background, during that speech you just made.

1:46 – And there are those infamous Aguilera pipes we’ve come to know so well. . .

Too bad she’s dressed like a bachelor party stripper . . .

1:48 – OMG!  It’s Alan Cummings!

This guy kinda scares me.   But I can’t remember why . . .

Now I remember . . .

1:51 – McSteamy ALERT!  McSteamy ALERT!

Hold on to your panties, ladies.  Because they are about to fall . . .

2:07 – “Clearly, one of us has underestimated the other.”

Oooh!  I smell a Cat Fight!  And I don’t know about you, but my money is on Veronica Mars!

She’s small, but scrappy.  Then again . . .

This could actually be a real toss up.

2:16 – Aww Cam!  I knew you wouldn’t let me down!

2:24 – “Alice?  Well, welcome to Wonderland.”

Burlesque dances into theaters on November 24, 2010 (Thanksgiving).  Will YOU see it?

[www.juliekushner.com]

11 Comments

Filed under Burlesque, Movie Trailer Recaplets

So You Wanna Be a Vampire? Read this before making your “life-changing” decision.

 

As a recapper of television shows involving vampires, and a voracious reader of “vampire literature,” people often write to me requesting information on how one should go about turning into a vampire.  I always welcome these questions.  After all, the decision to make the “human-to-vampire transition” is not one that should be taken lightly.  And I’ve seen far too many friends jump into this life choice, without having been truly informed as to all of its attendant consequences.

It’s like my Great, Great, Great, Great, Great Grandmother Vampire Sara once said: “Life is short, but immortality is forever.”

Don’t believe Vampire Sara? Just ask THIS GUY . . . He’s ANCIENT!

Since, regretably, I do not have the time to answer ALL of your questions (I am only human, after all), I’ve decided to devise this list of Frequently Asked Questions on the topic of vampirism.  Hopefully this list will serve to shed some light on this increasingly prevalent issue.

1) How do I go about becoming a vampire?

There are some shows schools of thought that would have you believe that in order to become a vampire, all you have to do is be bitten by one.

Still other movies like The Lost Boys schools of thought would suggest that you can become a vampire, merely by drinking a few sips of another vampire’s blood.

Well GEEZ!  If THAT was the case, EVERYBODY would do it, now wouldn’t they?   Unfortunately, making the transition is not so easy.  For starters, in most cases, it involves you DYING!

NOT FUN!

So, how do you die?  Well in most cases, a hot vampire can kill you, by draining all of the human blood from your body.

If you are lucky, he will break your neck first, so you won’t actually feel any pain when he does it.  And if you’re REALLY lucky, he’ll let you dance with him, half-naked, first . . .

The next step involves YOU drinking vampire blood.  This part can be tricky.  Especially, if you are already dead, and therefore, not  thirsty.  So, I say, drink lots of vampire blood NOW, while you are alive.  This way, by the time you want to turn, it won’t be an issue anymore.

Not sure where to get vampire blood?  Call me . . . I have some L.A. connections . . .

But don’t wait too long . . . because I have a feeling my “connection” is going to “dry up” real soon.

For those of you with cash to burn, rumor has it that, somewhere in a remote village in Alaska, there is a medical clinic that can perform the procedure in three days.  So you can become immortal, and be back at work in NO TIME!  The procedure is performed by a well-renown plastic surgeon  . . .

. . . and a highly experienced anesthesiologist . . .

All it takes is a simple lethal injection, and a quick-as-a-wink blood transfusion.  The best part?   NO unnecessary bodily decay or unsightly death scars!   In fact, many local celebrities have already been spotted frequenting the clinic  . . .

Feel free to contact the Alaska Division of Tourism for more information on this exciting opportunity.

2) All the vampires I know are young and/or hot.  I’m old as dirt and ugly as sin.  Can I still be a vampire?

First of all, sir.  I am SURE you are NOT nearly as old or ugly as you say you are. (pauses to look at the picture included as e-mail attachment – gags reflexively)

Hmmmmm . . . OK . . . well . . . Surely, there are SOME vampires that are neither young nor hot.  Let me think about this for a moment . . .

Nope.  You are right.  Unfortunately, there just doesn’t seem to be a real market out there for old ugly bloodsuckers.   Sorry about that.  Thanks for playing.  Better luck next life time . . .

3) What about that whole “can’t go out in the sunlight” thing?  I’m kind of a morning person.  So, I’m not sure I could handle that.

I can see how the whole “sunlight allergy” and “dead until dark” thing, could put a real crimp in your social and professional life.  Fortunately, today’s vampires have found many ways around this pesky inconvenience.  For example, you could, wear ugly sun-repellant jewelry like those boys in The Vampire Diaries . . .

. . . or pour glitter all over your naked body, like a drag queen at a gay nightclub  . . .

And if THAT doesn’t work, just suck it up and hang out with other vampires, who keep your same hours . . .

After you’ve become a super cool vampire, you aren’t going to want to associate with us lame ass humans, anyway.

4) I’m a pretty peaceful person.  I just don’t know if it’s in me to kill other people for their blood.  How would I survive?

Wait . . . you mean to tell me that you DON’T lick and bite people for fun?  Clearly, you are missing out.

You see, nowadays, most vampires don’t need to kill to survive.  There are lots of other options available to you.  For example, you can take a little nip of your lover during foreplay.  Very sexy!

You can also “borrow” blood from blood banks, like that dude from Moonlight . . .

. . . Or drink that synthetic stuff that looks like beer, but tastes like orange soda . . .

And, FINALLY, if you HATE little defenseless animals, and have no heart, you can go out into the woods and drink from Bambi’s mother . . .

Personally, I think this is the WORST / most immoral of ALL the above options.  However, folks in the literary world seem to equate Deer-Sucking with sainthood.  So far be it for me to judge, right?

5) Will I have any special powers when I’m a vampire?

You mean, ASIDE from being IMMORTAL, HOT and TOTALLY AWESOME?  . . .  Plenty.  As a vampire, you will have super-human strength and speed.

You will also f*ck like a rockstar . . .

Some say that you can even fly.  But, as far as I’m concerned, the coolest vampire skill of all that you will obtain is your ability to control people’s minds.

Aside from being hot, young, and Olympic-caliber f&ckers, THIS is probably the main reason why vampires ALWAYS get their mate.  Call it compulsion; call it “glamour;” call it “persuasion.”  Whatever you call it, it always works the same way.  Stare at your target with your beautiful eyes.  She falls into a deep trance.  You tell her exactly what you want her to do.  She does it.  Now, how awesome is THAT?

6) Do I REALLY need to be invited in EVERY time I want to enter a new human’s home?

The fact that you are even asking this question tells me that you are a completely rude turd, with no manners whatsoever .  . . no offense.  YES, you have to be invited in!  But the better question is, why is that a problem for you?  Is it your “thing” to just randomly go barging into people’s houses uninvited?  Talk about a BAD house guest.

Fish and YOU smell after three days . . .

Coincidentally, if you REALLY want to get into someone’s house, and the person isn’t inviting you in, just COMPEL him or her to WANT to invite you inside.  Problem solved.

7) I’ve been a vampire for many, MANY years now. All my friends are dead.  I’m bored.  What do I do now?

Ugh!  Type O, AGAIN?  I just drank that on Tuesday!

Simple.  Off yourself.  There are plenty of easy ways to do it.  For starters, you can, go on vacation someplace tropical . . .

Take a long walk into a short stake . . .

 . . . lose your head . . .

(I made this picture small, because it creeped me out too much, when it was larger.)

 . . . or just hang out with Buffy . . .

You’ll be chilling in Heaven in NO TIME!  Well . . . maybe not Heaven . . .

8 ) Any parting advice before I make “the change?”

Yes . . . invest in some good dental insurance.  You are going to have some f*&ked up teeth, for sure!

Well, that’s all I’ve got, folks.  See you on the “Other Side.”

 [What is Life Sucks Death Bites?]  [What is The Exquisite Corpse?] [ Who is Bellamy Jordan?]

988 Comments

Filed under Buffy the Vampire Slayer, FAQs, The Vampire Diaries, True Blood, Twilight Book Series, Vampires

Missing Your Favorite TV Shows This Summer? No Problem! Just Watch Other People Make Fun of Them on YouTube!

 

I’m not gonna lie!  It’s hard to be a TV Recapper during the summer months, because . . . well . . . there isn’t all that much to recap.  Now, if this had been, say five years ago, I would be forced to spend my non-recapping months doing things like: reading the classics, doing volunteer work, learning to play the cello, and becoming a productive member of society . . .

Fortunately, thanks to the advent of YouTube, I can simply continue to be the directionless miscreant I have always been (only tanner)!

 

Now, during the proper television viewing season, I generally enjoy watching and recapping shows like: Gossip Girl, the now-defunct Lost, Glee, The Vampire Diaries, and Mad Men.  (I also have kind of a thing for vampires, and will often make desperate attempts to throw “fangy” references into all my posts, even those that have absolutely nothing to do with “undead.”)

It was a love for the above-referenced shows (and vampires) that sent me to YouTube in search of videos I could watch that would dull the pain of summer hiatus.  Granted, the video clips I found weren’t quite as satisfying as seeing new episodes of my favorite television shows themselves.  But, hey, at least they made me giggle. 

So, without further adieu, I proudly present to you:  YouTube Videos That Make Fun of Television Shows I Like To Watch!

1) Glee

Have you ever watched Glee, and thought to yourself, “Wow that Rachel chick sure is a nutjob!  I’d hide my pet bunny, if she was ever in my house!”

If so, this film is for YOU!

2) Mad Men

Speaking of sick and twisted, remember that scene from Season 3 of Mad Men, where that annoying British guy randomly got his foot run over by a lawnmower right in the middle of the office?  Ever wonder what that scene would sound like when replayed to the tune of Imogen Heap’s Hide and Seek, a.k.a. That Song TheyAlways Play on Teen Dramas Whenever Something Dramatic Happens?  Wonder no more . . .

3) The Vampire Diaries

Somewhere, in an alternate universe, Stefan and Damon Salvatore are NOT vampire brothers fighting for the love of the same girl.  Rather, they are ambiguously gay roommates, with an annoying habit of breaking into song at inopportune moments . . . (Thanks to Amy over at ImaginaryMen for sharing this FABULOUS video with me!)

[Click the internal link to watch.  You’ll like it, I promise!]

4) Buffy the Vampire Slayer / The Twilight Series

 

Perhaps in that SAME alternate universe, where Stefan and Damon are living “homosexually ever after,” Edward Cullen is NOT the “cute and sparkly” vampire who won Bella Swan’s heart.  Rather, he is a creepy stalker vampire with a dangerous hard-on for a certain slayer we all know and love . . .

5) Gossip Girl / Supernatural

If you are anything like me, you were beyond depressed during the Gossip Girl Season 3 finale, when Chuck Bass threw away his chance at happiness with Blair Waldorf, for a paltry tumble in the hay with that skanky hobag, Jenny Humphrey.  Of course, we ALL want those two crazy kids, C&B, to reconcile pronto.  However, if Blair absolutely MUST get involved with a rebound guy, at least let him be someone manly, someone who is not afraid to battle a few demons (both internal and external) to protect the heart of his lady love . . . someone like Supernatural‘s Dean Winchester.

6) Lost

And, finally, this one goes out to all of you folks that were really mad that the flash-sideways world on Lost ended up being nothing more than purgatory (even though the writers promised it wouldn’t be).  It’s for you folks who would have preferred a more “scientific”explanation for all that on and off island “time shifting” the castaways suffered through for six seasons.  This is also for the select few of you who shelled out the big bucks for those ridiculously over-priced Lost Happy Meal toys.  Apparently, someone out there put them to better use, than YOU did . . .

Well, that’s all, folks . . . at least until the next time I inevitably run out of things to recap . . .

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Filed under Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Glee, Gossip Girl, Lost, Mad Men, The Vampire Diaries, Twilight

Create Your Dream Cast – Vampire Academy Series

A few months back, I became absolutely obsessed with a little book called The Hunger Games by groundbreaking author, Suzanne Collins.  Upon hearing that Lionsgate had purchased the film rights to the book, I decided it might be fun to create a sort of “dream cast,” of actors I would “hire” if I had the opportunity to do casting for the film.

Writing the post was a ton of fun for me.  Plus, a lot of people really seemed to respond to it. 

So, now it’s a few months later, and I find myself obsessed with a brand new Young Adult book series.   In many ways, Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy is the anti-Twilight.  On the surface, yes, like that other series, Vampire Academy is about a girl in her late teens who is enmeshed in a world of supernatural creatures, most notably, vampires.  However, Rose Hathaway, the main protagonist who narrates the books, for lack of a better phrase, kicks ass!  She is a dhampir.  A half-human, half-vampire amalgamation, who is training to become a guardian of vampires.  That’s right, boys and girls, she protects vampires, as opposed to being protected by them! 

While these books definitely focus MORE on action and less on the romance, there are enough longing looks and steamy scenes in these novels to sate the desires of even the most sappy of romantics.  And don’t even get me started on these dhampir and vampire men . . .  (swoons and faints).

Even though there are currently no plans to convert the Vampire Academy books into a film or television series (SERIOUSLY?  What are you WAITING for, Hollywood?), I thought it might be fun to return to the casting couch, and select who I would cast in a hypothetical film or television show based on these books.  

I plan to try EXTREMELY hard not to inadvertently spoil any of the main plot points of these books, in the context of explaining my various “casting” decisions.  However, there ARE lots of jaw-dropping twists in this series, particularly in the first novel, that impacted my ultimate decisions as to which actors should play these characters.  So, if you are a MAJOR spoiler-phobe, please tread lightly.  And don’t say I didn’t warn you . . .

Rose Hathaway:

My pick: Nikki Reed

Why I think she’d make a great Rose:  In many ways, Rose is the toughest character to cast in this series.  After all, as the series’ protagonist and first-person narrator, her likeability and relatability will drive the entire story.  Rose is a fairly complex gal.   On one hand, she is tough-as-nails, extremely brave, and fiercely loyal.  However, she can also be prone to impulsive behavior, moodiness, icy sarcasm, and intense bouts of rage.  To top it off, at the start of the series, Rose is quite the popular party girl, one who has a reputation, whether deserved or not, for being “more than friendly” with many of the guys at her school.

In terms of Rose’s physical characteristics, Nikki Reed meets them to a tee!  In the novels, Rose is described as being of medium height, muscular, and slightly curvy (at least in the chest area).  She also has lightly tanned skin, dark eyes, and long dark brown hair.  Additionally, as an actress still in her very early 20’s, Nikki will have no trouble passing for a 17-18 year old girl, particularly one as mature beyond her years, as Rose.

Of course, ideal physical characteristics alone do not make a perfect casting choice.  Undoubtedly, many of you likely remember Nikki as the blond and beautiful, but slightly bitchy, Rosalie Hale in the Twilight series . . .

However, what you may not know is that Nikki Reed has been acting in films and writing screenplays LONG before Twilight was even written.  Nikki was not even 15-years old when she wrote, and starred, alongside Evan Rachel Wood, in the heartbreaking and highly disturbing film Thirteen, about two young teens who find themselves falling into an unforgiving world of drugs, crime and sex.  The film was critically acclaimed and even received an Oscar Nomination.

Aside from “looking” right for the part, I think Nikki Reed has the acting chops, intelligence, physicality, and natural sex appeal to pull off a role as multi-faceted as Rose Hathaway.

Lissa Dragomir

My pick: Julianne Hough

Why I think she’d make a great Lissa: In the novel, Rose’s best friend, the vampiric Lissa Dragomir, is described as being tall, thin, and pale-skinned, with blonde hair, and piercing green eyes.  In terms of personality, Lissa and Rose are almost polar opposites.  While Rose, is loud, and tough, and brash, Lissa, a descendant from a long line of royal vampires, is more reseved, a bit more fragile, and a lot more graceful and sophisticated.  She also excudes a certain innocence, and charisma (part natural, part magical) that draws others to her, making her extremely well liked at the Academy where she and Rose study.  On the other hand, whoever took on the role of Lissa, must be able to display intense emotionality, as certain things happen during the course of the series that cause Lissa to lose her characteristic cool.

Most people are familiar with Julianne from her role as a dancer on Dancing with the Stars

In that capacity, Julianne’s grace, innocence, likeability, and natural charisma practically leap of the screen.  The question is, “Can she act?” 

I would be inclined to say, “yes.”  Hough has already been slated to play the female lead, Ariel Moore, in the upcoming remake of the popular 80’s musical film, Footloose, which originally starred Kevin Bacon. 

 The role of Ariel in that film is a fairly meaty one, particularly for an actress making her big screen debut.  For the producers of the movie to cast Julianne in that role, she must have shown them something truly special at her audition.  If Julianne can pull off Ariel Moore, I have no doubt that she would also be able to pull off Lissa Dragomir.

Dimitri Belikov

My pick: Channing Tatum

Why I think he would make a great Dimitri: As Rose’s mentor, and main love interest throughout the series, 24-year old guardian, Dimitri Belikov is arguably the most important male role to cast in a film or television show based on this series.  In the books, he is described as being extremely tall, and impressively buff, with dark eyes and brown hair. 

Dimitri is basically every girl’s dream.  On one hand, he’s strong and amazingly tough.  He described as a “god” by many at the Academy.  And yet, he is also stern, secretive, and sensitive — a natural born-caretaker, one constantly torn between doing his job well and giving in to his desires.

Having starred in films like G.I. Joe and Step Up, we know that Channing Tatum has the physicality necessary for this role (And have you seen those abs?  WOW!).  Yet, Tatum has also had the opportunity to prove himself capable of taking on the role of romantic lead, as evidenced by his portrayal of John Tyree in the recently released chick flick, Dear John.  I’m just hoping he can fake a Russian accent . . .

Christian Ozera

My pick: Ed Westwick

Why I think he’d make a great Christian:  As Lissa’s main love interest throughout the series, Christian is probably the second most important male lead to cast.  The character is described as being tall and lean, with dark hair and pale skin.  Christian begins the series as a loner and an outsider, due to a questionable family history.  He has a dark sense of humor, a biting wit, and is not afraid to challenge authority.  Christian also can do very cool things with fire . . .

I chose Westwick, mainly because, aside from him being an amazing actor, I felt Christian’s relationship with Lissa, at least as it was portrayed in the first book in the series, dovetailed nicely with Westwick’s character Chuck’s relationship with Blair, during the early seasons of the CW series Gossip Girl.

In both relationships, the male lead is instantly sure of his feelings for the object of his desire, while the female will ultimately take a bit more convincing.   Like Chuck and Blair, Christian understands Lissa in a way that nobody else does, not even Rose.  To win her heart, he uses his intelligence and wit, as opposed to any sort of brute strength or macho bravado.  Christian’s and Lissa’s relationship has a fun, and undeniably sexy, push and pull, in its early stages, that I would love to see play out screen.  And who better to exemplify the “push and pull” of young love than Chuck Bass?

Mason Ashford

My pick: Douglas Smith

Why I think he’d make a great Mason:  As Rose’s best guy friend and fellow guardian, who just so happens to harbor a not-so-secret crush on Rose, Mason doesn’t play a particularly big part in the first book of the Vampire Academy series.  However, he DOES play a major role in Frostbite, its sequel.  In the books, Mason is described as being tall (Am I the only one noticing a pattern here?), and red-headed, with boyish good looks.  In casting Mason, it is important to find a guy who is likeable and fun enough, to function as a reasonable, if not exactly heart-stopping, alternative to Dimitri, to fulfill the role of Rose’s boyfriend.  Douglas Smith’s portrayal of Ben Henrickson in the HBO series Big Love is so genuine and inherently likeable, you almost want to reach through the screen and give him a hug.  Yeah, that’s our Mason!

Mia Rinaldi

My pick:  Ashley Benson

Why I think she’d make a great Mia: Every high school series needs a mean girl.  And, in the Vampire Academy series, those shoes are filled, at least initially, by Mia Rinaldi.  Rose’s and Lissa’s nemesis, Mia, is one year younger than they are.  She is described as being short (YAY!  FINALLY!  Short people represent . . . too bad it had to be the bitchy one . . .), with blonde hair, blue eyes, and a childlike cherubic face that belies her catty and manipulative nature.  And yet, there is also a vulnerability to Mia.  Behind that cold facade, Mia hides a few dark secrets, ones that make her actions, if not necessarily justifiable, at least understandable.

Best known for her role as Carson in the fourth installment of the Bring it On film series, and for her upcoming turn as Hanna in the new ABC Family teen drama, Pretty Little Liars, premiering this summer, Ashley has plenty of experience playing the girl you love to hate.  And yet, there is always a soft-side to her portrayals — one that allows the “love” part to dominate just a bit more than it would otherwise . . .

Natalie Dashkov

My pick: Tina Majorino

Why I think she would make a great Natalie: In Vampire Academy, Natalie is more or less described as a plain-jane.  Natalie is the quiet, sweet, and socially awkward friend of Rose’s and Lissa’s.  Unlike the others, she seems to care little about the politics of high school.  The actress who plays Natalie must be sweet and inherently likeable, but have sufficient acting chops to pull off a major dramatic turn toward the end of the first installment of the series.  Majorino’s recent portrayals of Heather in Big Love and Mack in Veronica Mars, have shown her to be precisely the right girl for the job.

Jesse Zeklos

My pick: Michael Trevino

Why I think he’d make a great Jesse:  In the novels, Jesse is described as being a tall, dark, and handsome, spoiled rich kid.  He is popular, D-baggy, manipulative, and rumored to have slept with multiple members of the cast.  Now if that doesn’t SCREAM Tyler Stratton from CW’s The Vampire Diaries, I don’t know WHAT does!

Eddie Castile

My pick: Chris Lowell

Why I think he’d make a great Eddie:  Admittedly, at the start of the series, Eddie is little more than Mason’s friend and sidekick, and, therefore, a sort-of adopted member of the novels’ “Scooby Gang.”  However, by the second and third installment of the series, Eddie comes into his own, as a loyal friend and strong protector of those around him.  In casting Eddie, the producers would need someone relatable, who has a sense of humor, and isn’t afraid of getting knocked around a bit (and bitten?).  Seeing as Chris Lowell’s character Dell on Private Practice recently died of a brain hemorrhage, I’m thinking the actor’s schedule is WIDE open . . .

Adrian Ivashkov

My pick: Jason Dohring

Why I think he’d make a great Adrian:  OK, this is sort of cheating, seeing as Adrian doesn’t appear AT ALL in the first book of the series.  However, the character plays such a major role in the subsequent books, I just couldn’t resist trying my hand at casting him.  The novel describes Adrian as tall and fair haired with penetrating eyes that see EVERYTHING.  He is more muscularly built than most vampires, but leaner than super-buff dhampirs, like Dimitri.  At first glance, 21-year old Adrian might appear to the casual reader as just another spoiled rich vampire — a hard drinking, heavy smoking, womanizing, cad, with too much money and time on his hands. 

However, as we get to know Adrian throughout the series, we see that he is much more than that.  He is smart and often scarily perceptive, instantly knowing things about Rose that she might not even understand about herself.  Adrian can also be surprisingly generous with his money, his time, and his soul.  He quickly develops a friendship with Lissa, and harbors an as-of-yet unrequited MAJOR soft-spot for Rose.  More so than Mason, Adrian could wind up being a major contender in the battle for our main protagonist’s heart.

So why Jason Dohring?   Basically, a few years back, I fell in LOVE with a character by the name of Logan Echolls!  On Veronica Mars, he too was a spoiled womanizing rich kid bad boy.  Or, at least, he started off that way.  That was before he fell in love with Veronica Mars, who like Rose, was a kickass, hardcore, take-no-prisoners, protagonist, who began the series, despising Logan. 

In my opinion, Veronica’s and Logan’s relationship remains one of the hottest and most compulsively watchable couplings in television.  Please forgive me for wanting to see my Logan again, even if it has to be with another leading lady . . .

So, there you have it, my Dream Cast for the Vampire Academy film and/or television series.  Now we just have to find someone willing to buy the media rights . . . Any takers?

17 Comments

Filed under Book, casting, Vampire Academy

Anatomy of a Trailer: Eclipse – Twilight Saga, Part 3 (Now includes NEW second trailer . . .)

I tried not to blog about this.  Really.  But it simply refused to be ignored.  So, here I am . . .

I can’t believe they are already releasing another one of these movies!  I feel as though I literally just saw the last one in theaters.  New Moon (based on Book 2 of the Twilight series) was, in my opinion, one of the most unintentionally hilarious films of all time.  

The cheesy 360-degree rotating camera shots to represent Bella’s months of “depression;”

the cartoonish CGI Wolfman graphics;

 the obligatory topless shots of those male strippers  Jacob and his wolfpack; and

the way Edward’s disembodied head would appear in the clouds, every time Bella was about to do something “bad.”

“Don’t do it, Bella!”

All of these gems made me, and the rest of the people in my theater, laugh out loud, multiple times, throughout the film.  In short, I enjoyed New Moon, but probably not for the reasons that I was supposed to enjoy it . . .

So, when I heard that Summit Entertainment had released a new trailer for Eclipse, the third book in the Twilight Saga, curiosity (and my odd sense of humor) got the best of me.  I simply had to watch it. 

Well, color me impressed.  It’s a pretty good trailer, actually.  Granted, there wasn’t a lot of action in it.  However, I think the producers did a nice job of establishing in a relatively short amount of time (90 seconds) the immensity and increasing urgency of Bella’s choice, and the impact it will have on the people she loves. 

Let’s take a look . . .

 :13 – Say what you will about the Twilight movies, but the location shots in them are absolutely breathtaking.  The book and movie are both supposed to take place in the fictional town of Forks, Washington.  However, the film was shot mostly in and around Portland, Oregon.  Who knew Oregon was so gorgeous?

 :20 – I never officially came down one way or the other on the Team Edward versus Team Jacob debate.  However, I will say that Edward and Bella have an ideal height differential on their side.  In case you were curious (because I was):  Both Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner are in the mid to upper range of 5 feet, while Robert Pattinson is a lean 6’1”.  So, if Bella ever wants to wear heels, Edward is definitely her guy . . . 

(Then again, in the book, Wolf Jacob is supposed to be about 7 feet tall.  So, who knows?)

 :27 – I’m not quite sold on Dakota Fanning as Jane yet.  Based on my interpretation of the books, the Jane character has “pretty, but creepy looking” child star written all over her (Actors that fall into this category include: Haley Joe Osment in The Sixth Sense, that girl from The Ring movies, and those twin girls in The Shining. )

“Come play with us.”

At 16, Dakota has aged out of “pretty, but creepy looking,” I’m afraid.  She looks like a real teenager now! 

 

Perhaps Movie Jane would be scarier, if she didn’t talk so darn much!  Dakota sounds like she has a bit of a cold, in this scene . . .

:34 – Is it just me, or does Robert Pattinson look a tad constipated, here?

:37 thru :39 – I like that they included Bella’s parents in this trailer.  By choosing to become a vampire, Bella isn’t just giving up a boy, she’s giving up her whole human life.  The books often give this part of her decision short shrift.

:43 – Jacob: “You don’t have to change for me, Bella.”  (A solid argument for Team Jacob.)

1:10 – Here is our first look at Bryce Dallas Howard as the new Vampire Victoria.  As many of you know, Howard replaced the original Victoria, Rachel Lefevre, in the series, as a result of “scheduling conflicts.”   It sounds like a bunch of hooey to me. 

Personally, I think Summit probably wanted to cash in on the movie’s success and bring in a bigger name.  Don’t get me wrong, I like Bryce Dallas Howard.  I think she’s a talented actress.  I’m just not sure she’s right for this role.  She just looks too nice  and sane to play this menacing, woman-on-a-rampage, character.  Her hair even looks tamer than the original Victoria’s!

1:14 – Edward: “I will protect you, no matter what.” 

Feminists beware.  Twilight is not exactly a “girl power” series.  Until the final book, Bella mostly inhabits a damsel-in-distress type role.  Throught the book, the films, and this trailer, there is tons of talk about protecting Bella.  This is fine, I guess.  However,  it would be nice, if  our heroine fought back on her own, every once in a while.

1:19 – Obligatory Taylor Lautner Shirtless shot . . .

(He still looks pretty good, but slightly less buff in this trailer than in the last film.  No?)

1:22 – Jacob:  “I will fight for you, until your heart stops beating.” 

Based on the YouTube comments for this video, the aforementioned line was a big hit with Team Jacob fans.  I’ll admit that in the context of the film, and given Bella’s impending choice, the line is a moderately romantic one. 

However, as a stand alone, it’s more than a little disturbing.  For a second there, I thought I was watching one of those Lifetime movies.  Specifically, the ones where the wife-beater / lunatic guy chases some B-list actress (Tori Spelling?)  around the house with a knife and says, “If I can’t have you,  NO ONE CAN!”

Eclipse hits theaters June 30, 2010.  Will YOU see it?

P.S.  For all you Twilight fans out there, it looks like Summit Entertainment has recently released a new trailer for Eclipse.  Unlike the sort of lovey-dovey first one, this trailer focuses more on the action / horror elements of the upcoming film.  Let me just say, I think it is TEN TIMES better than the first trailer!   Parts of it are downright scary, and the special effects and CGI graphics seem much improved from the first and second installments of the series.   And I’m not exactly a “Twihard” girl, so when I say it, I mean it. 

Rather than make this post any longer than it already is, I’ll simply let the new trailer speak for itself . . .

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Filed under Eclipse, Movie Trailer Recaplets, Twilight Book Series

At First Bite: An Excerpt from Hollywood Warlock – A Novel by Julie Kushner

Chapter 1

At First Bite

The mood on the set of At First Bite, the much anticipated prequel to the critically acclaimed The Vampire Chronicles, was undoubtedly one of anticipation.  After all, filming was to start in just a few short minutes on what cast and crew knew would be a surefire blockbuster.  Heck, with the world economy in the crapper, and people’s lives going down the toilet right along with it, who wasn’t in need of a little supernatural escapist fantasy?  And what better way to escape than into the arms of a dangerous undead blood sucker?  The marketing department often joked that the tagline for the film should be “Recessions Bite, and So Does He.”

            Frenetic energy reverberated around the set, as everyone prepared for the film’s pivotal first scene, in which Vampire Lestrange encounters the naïve yet strong-willed heroine, Rebecca.  The prop department was busy strategically splattering “blood” (an odorous mixture of tomato paste, chocolate syrup, and lord knows what else) on the walls and floor, while white lab-coat wearing makeup specialists fussed over a highly realistic dismembered plastic corpse.  As a cumulative result of these activities, the sound stage bore greater resemblance to an Emergency Room surgery gone horribly awry than the filming locale for a high-budget action/horror flick set during the Victorian era. 

The rendezvous between the film’s two leads was to occur just moments after Lestrange, unbeknownst to Rebecca, had turned her sister Mary into a vampire.  The only problem was that film’s star, Justin Warlock, was still in his trailer, and no one seemed capable or willing to get him onto the set.

            “He’s doing what?  You’re kidding right?  Oh, I don’t get paid enough for this shit.”

            Kate McElwain paced back and forth in front of the craft services cart, barely able to contain her rage, as her agent tried in vain to prevent her from bodily removing her costar from his trailer.  Given her mood, he quickly decided honesty of the non-sugar coated variety would be the best approach.

            “Sweetie, you know Justin Warlock has always had a reputation for being a bit . . . How do I say it kindly?  Promiscuous.  But the boy brings box office, so we just have to bite our tongues.”

            “You bite your tongue.  I’m going to bite his balls off with those fake vampire fangs!” 

            Although touted by Entertainment Weekly as one of the “Top Ten New Faces to Watch in Hollywood This Year,” Kate McElwain, at 22, was already somewhat of an industry veteran.  Daughter of long-time soap opera starlet, Marlene McElwain, Kate practically grew up on film and television sets.  In fact, her career began when she was just eight months old, and was chosen, along with another baby who looked remarkably similar to her, to play the newborn daughter of her mother’s character on Days of Our Lives.

            As Kate got older, she had little trouble landing modeling gigs and commercials, due to her uncanny resemblance to her mother.  “It’s almost as if we created a time machine, went back about 25 years, retrieved Marlene from the past and brought her back here to repeat her career,” Marlene’s manager proclaimed about Kate.  With her petite frame, strawberry blond hair, pouty pink lips, and deep piercing blue eyes, Kate was the picture of naivety and innocence. 

As such, even though Kate was hardly a teenager, she was often cast to play “damsel in distress” types much younger than herself.  In fact, her role in At First Bite was no different.  Given Kate’s penchant for innocent roles, those who met her in her personal life were often surprised and amused to learn that she had the mouth of a truck driver and a temper to match.

“I mean, seriously, we haven’t even started filming yet, and already he’s missing call times because he’s diddling extras in his trailer?” Kate griped.  “Why doesn’t anyone just go get him, for Christ sake?”

“From what I’ve heard, no one interrupts Justin Warlock while he is ‘otherwise engaged,” the agent replied coyly.

Kate had never actually met Justin in person; although, she’d be lying if she said she wasn’t familiar with his career and reputation.  First discovered by his agent at a shopping mall at the age of 16, 25-year old Justin Warlock made a career out of playing the leading man in romantic comedies and Nicholas Sparks-esque dramas.  In addition to being a consistent fixture on People Magazine’s Sexiest Male List, Warlock was also a notorious playboy.  In fact, since starring in his first feature film at 18-years old, Justin has been romantically linked with every single one of his costars.  However, none of these romantic relationships had been rumored to last long after the movie premiere.

“Screw that!” Kate exclaimed, “Justin Warlock’s no supernatural being.  He’s just a dick who can’t keep it in his pants long enough to get to work on time.  I don’t see what everyone’s so fucking afraid of!”  And with that, she stalked off, leaving her agent to shake his head at his client’s tempestuousness.

Typically, by the time filming commenced, lead actors had already met one another at least a half a dozen times to conduct script read-throughs and navigate press junkets.  However, At First Bite’s Director expressly prohibited his on-screen duo from meeting prior to filming the first scene.  Rather, he desired their initial reactions to one another to be “fresh and unfettered.”  According to the Director, an actor’s and actress’s meeting on the first day of filming should be like a virgin bride’s first encounter with her husband on her wedding night, charged with anxiety and anticipation.  Kate thought that idea was a bunch of crap.  She was no virgin, and she was quite certain Justin wasn’t one either.  But far be it for her to mess with the Director’s “vision.”

Right now, vision or no vision, Kate was ready to have a little chat with El Director about her MIA costar.  When Kate approached “the man in charge,” he was hard at work on the Friday edition of the New York Times Crossword puzzle.  His tongue cradled his upper lip in concentration, as he struggled over one of the tougher clues.  The 40ish gentleman, whose salt and pepper hair, olive complexion and finely muscled physique gave him a George Clooney-type appeal, did not seem at all perturbed that his film was not running on schedule.  In fact, he seemed the picture of relaxation.

“Umm . . . Leo?”

The Director looked up from his puzzle and offered Kate a winning smile.  “Miss McElwain.  You look troubled.  Please, have a seat,” he said, patting a chair next to his own.  “How can I ease your spirits?”

Kate sat gingerly in the chair next to her Director.  Although it was going to take all of the inner strength she could muster, the young actress desperately wanted to appear diplomatic, knowing it was far too early in the game to piss off her boss by appearing too pushy.

“Well,” she started, “I am very eager to begin shooting our first scene.”

The Director laughed, a hearty Santa Claus “Ho, Ho, Ho,” which seemed incongruous with his lean-muscled frame.  “Ahhh, me too, me too,” chortled the Director, “It’s high time we popped that cherry.”

Ughh, more creepy virgin bride references.  Please, just kill me now.  Kate thought, but forced herself to remain courteous.  “Right . . . so the thing is, I was kind of wondering if you knew whether our ‘star’ would be making an appearance on set any time soon?”

“You think I should go get him, right?”  The Director responded, looking at Kate slyly.  “Yeah, I guess I should get him,” he rose from his seat and offered Kate his hand to help her out of the chair, “Come with me?”

Kate had no desire to go anywhere near that trailer, but again she recognized she had to be polite.  “Sure,” she said and followed the Director toward the trailers.  At least something was finally getting done. 

As they approached Justin’s trailer, Kate and the Director could hear the distinct sounds of sex coming from inside the doorway.  Kate was disgusted, but the Director simply appeared amused.  He glanced back at Kate.  “On second thought, why don’t you wait outside,” he said, before quickly climbing the steps and rapping on the door.  There was a brief pause, a few nervous shrieks and a hustle of activity, before the door opened a crack and the Director escaped inside, abruptly shutting the door behind him.

Kate was seething, as she waited outside the trailer alone, her foot tapping incessantly up and down, her arms wrapped tightly across her chest.  After a few moments, the door to the trailer opened.  Four women, all rather cheap-looking in Kate’s estimation, climbed out into the daylight, in various states of undress, each with the same lovesick grins on their faces, and dopey looks in their eyes.  If Kate hadn’t been too nervous about shooting to eat breakfast that morning, she probably would have puked right then and there.

Then the Director re-emerged, but this time with the man of the hour himself, Justin Warlock.  The two seemed to be having an uproariously good time, just yucking it up, which only served to make Kate madder.  Simultaneously, they both noticed her glaring at them and, like insolent school boys, guiltily wiped the shit-eating grins from their mugs.  “I’ll meet you both back on set,” called the Director.  He winked at Kate before briskly walking away, leaving the pair all by themselves.  So much for the “wedding night.”

Justin Warlock approached Kate, not with the confident swagger of a guy who just got laid by four women, but rather with the childlike exuberance of an eight-year old chasing after an ice cream truck.  With his tussled sun-kissed sandy brown hair, uncommonly long eyelashes, and obnoxiously adorable nose, the actor appeared to be nothing like the nymphomaniacal Adonis Kate had read about in the tabloids.  And yet, to the actress’s deep discomfort, Justin’s youthful pretty- boy body definitively smelled of sex.  Annoyed, Kate stared at the floor, desperately trying to avoid her costar’s good mood, which was being broadcast like radio waves from his dimpled smile and impossibly straight Crest advertisement white teeth.

“Wow . . . Kate McElwain!  I’ve been dying to meet you, since, like, forever,” announced Justin in the slightly-raspy voice Kate had heard so many times in movies.  He bowed slightly and held his hand out for Kate to shake.  Kate stared at the abhorrent hand as if it was infested with the intermingled juices of cheaply-perfumed floosies (which it probably was), and took a step back.  She would not be won over so easily.

The ingénue looked up at her nemesis, hands clenched, ready for battle.  Her vitriolic words spilled out of her like bullets shot from a tommy gun.  “OK.  Let’s get something straight, right off the bat.  I get that you’re Mister Sexiest Man Alive, and that you have scripts being thrown at you every day from here to Scandinavia, but some of us actually need this job.  So, in the future, if you need to get your cock sucked by one of the members of your bimbo harem, I’d really appreciate it if you did it on your own time.”

Wow, it felt really good to get that off her chest.  Kate took a deep breath.  Then, she looked up at Justin to gauge his reaction to her outburst.  For a moment, he didn’t appear to react at all.  Then, shock registered on his face.  Clearly, he had never been spoken to like that by anyone before, particularly not a woman.  Kate even worried for a second or two that he might hit her.  Instead, he did something even more unexpected.

Gently, Justin clasped Kate’s hand, looking deep into her blue eyes with his rounded blinking emerald green ones, which seemed as though they should belong to a boy much younger than the actor himself.  “Kate, you are absolutely 100% right . . . about everything.  What I did was completely selfish, unreasonably inconsiderate, and just plain stupid.  You deserve better, and I promise to be better from now on.  I am really . . . truly sorry.”

Unprepared for this type of response, Kate was utterly at a loss for words, and could do nothing but stare back into Justin’s eyes.  Even as Justin delivered his “heartfelt” apology, Kate knew that she was being played.  This guy was totally bullshitting her.  He didn’t mean a word of it.  And yet, while her mind was saying “Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit,” on autopilot, her body was responding in another way entirely. 

The warmth from Justin’s hand sent tingles up her spine and throughout her body.  Immediately, her mouth became dry and her knees nearly buckled.  Try as she might, she could not pull herself away from Justin’s entrancing stare and her eyes watered at the unblinking effort.  Suddenly, she had this intense impulse to rip off his shirt and run her hands over his muscled abdominals.  She imagined herself kissing his thin lips as he nibbled on her neck. 

Kate longed to touch the firm bulge in Justin’s designer khakis.  Just moments ago, she hated this man, who seemed to stand in the way of her career and was against everything she stood for.  Now, she couldn’t bear to let go of his hand, which, to her embarrassment, she was gripping tightly with her recently manicured nails.

            And yet, as excited as she was by these feelings, they also frightened her to her very core.  After all, Kate wasn’t the type of girl to go gaga over a man as seemingly shallow as Justin Warlock.  In fact, Kate wasn’t the type of girl to go gaga over any man at all.  You see, Kate McElwain was a lesbian.

_______________________________________________________________

Thirsty for more?  Click this link to find out how you can purchase your own copy of Hollywood Warlock. 

http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/hollywood-warlock/6227611?showPreview

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