Disney firing made James Gunn a ‘better person’

James Gunn has credited his high-profile firing as the director of the next Guardians of the Galaxy sequel for making him a “better person”.The filmmaker came under fire last year after offensive tweets he wrote a decade ago were unearthed and caused a…

James Gunn has credited his high-profile firing as the director of the next Guardians of the Galaxy sequel for making him a “better person”.

The filmmaker came under fire last year after offensive tweets he wrote a decade ago were unearthed and caused a stir online. He issued an apology for the mistakes of his past and insisted he was a changed man, but bosses at Disney cut ties with the 52-year-old, prompting fans and the Guardians castmembers to launch a public campaign urging them to reconsider and reinstate Gunn.

Their wish was finally granted in March as executives decided to give the filmmaker another chance, and Gunn has now admitted that the controversy really made him reflect on the path he wanted his life to take going forward.

“I’m a better person than I was a year ago,” he told The Associated Press. “It’s made me more creative and focused on the things that really matter to me, which are my friends, my relationships and the movies that I’m making.”

Among his close confidantes is actress Elizabeth Banks, who stars in new horror film Brightburn, which Gunn produced, and he is thankful to have people in the industry he can rely on.

“I have one really good gift,” the director stated. “I’m attracted to really good people and I have chosen to put wonderful people around me, whether it’s the actors I work with, the crew members I work with…, the writers I would deal with, the studio people I deal with. There’s a lot of really good people in this industry.”

In addition to getting back to work on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, Gunn is also developing a new Suicide Squad movie for Marvel Studios’ comic book rivals, DC, after signing up for the supervillain project following his Disney exit.

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Elizabeth Banks always knew Kristen Stewart would be perfect for Charlie’s Angels

Elizabeth Banks always knew she wanted to make the Charlie’s Angels revamp around Kristen Stewart because she couldn’t imagine another leading lady. Ella Balisnka and Naomi Scott joined the Twilight star in the film, which was co-written and directed …

Elizabeth Banks always knew she wanted to make the Charlie’s Angels revamp around Kristen Stewart because she couldn’t imagine another leading lady.

Ella Balisnka and Naomi Scott joined the Twilight star in the film, which was co-written and directed by Banks, but Kristen’s role was non-negotiable, as far as The Hunger Games actress was concerned.

“I’m somebody who believes that 90 per cent of the job is casting,” she said at a recent CinemaCon gala in Las Vegas. “I mean, I’m an actor so of course, I believe that laughs. But I really do believe that is key.

“I want to see Robert Downey Jr. play Tony Stark (in Iron Man); I don’t want to see anyone else do it. I want to see Kristen Stewart be a Charlie’s Angel and I didn’t want to see (anyone else).”

Banks admits she had a blast making the film and feels sure she got the right three girls to play the titular crime-fighting Angels.

But the director insists Stewart carries the film: “I wanted her to surprise people and be on a journey. I wanted to give her other Angels that were not anything like her so that she could pull energy from and bounce off of and work off of. Because it’s the dynamism in the scenes that makes her really fun (to work with).”

The new Charlie’s Angels movie, which also features Banks, Sir Patrick Stewart, Noah Centineo, Sam Claflin, and Djimon Hounsou was recently pushed back to an early November (19) release. The first Charlie’s Angels movie, featuring Drew Barrymore, Lucy Liu, and Cameron Diaz, also opened on the first weekend of November back in 2000.

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Jennifer Garner on 4% challenge: ‘I’ve been working with women directors for years’

Jennifer Garner has thrown her weight behind the 4% challenge, which sees Hollywood stars pledge to work with female directors.Actors and actresses are being challenged to work with more women filmmakers over the next 18 months to increase the number o…

Jennifer Garner has thrown her weight behind the 4% challenge, which sees Hollywood stars pledge to work with female directors.

Actors and actresses are being challenged to work with more women filmmakers over the next 18 months to increase the number of women and women of colour behind the camera – an initiative launched by Time’s Up and the Annenberg Inclusion Initiative at the Sundance Film Festival.

Explaining how she has long been a champion of the idea, even before it became a talking point, Jennifer told Time’s Up chief executive Lisa Borders at the 2019 Makers Conference on Thursday (07Feb19) she’s totally on board with the idea.

“To me, I’ve done two films with women, and a TV show driven by women and directed mostly by women, so I feel like oh is it a challenge?” she said. “Oh yeah, no I’m down, I’ve got that. I didn’t know that we had to announce it. I announce that I will take the 4% challenge.

“And you know what, those sets are different. They are different… Whoever is leading the charge it’s reflected in the crew, it’s reflected in the way the ship is run and just the difference kinds of conversations you have on set.”

Earlier this week, Chris Pratt also said he was happily taking on the challenge. During a joint interview with his The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part co-star Elizabeth Banks, who is an accomplished director as well as actress, Chris blindly signed on to star in her next project without knowing any details.

“I’m here and ready for it. I’m in the 4% and I would love for people to get involved,” Elizabeth said to Press Association. “I’ve got movie roles ready to go, Chris is committing to my next film.”

Chris chimed in: “I am, yep. Nope, I don’t even know what it is but I told her I’m in. That’s my agent on the phone but I’m not even going to answer it, let’s do it, because it’s in.”

They then shook on it before Chris joke whispered: “What’s the movie?”

Brie Larson, Tessa Thompson, Amy Schumer, Bryce Dallas Howard and Kyra Sedgwick have also pledged their support, along with executives from Universal Pictures, MGM Studios, Paramount Pictures and Disney.

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Kristen Stewart set to star in same-sex Christmas romcom

Kristen Stewart is set to play one half of a same-sex couple in a romcom that takes place over the holidays.Happiest Season tells the story of a young woman who plans to propose to her girlfriend during her family’s annual holiday party, but then learn…

Kristen Stewart is set to play one half of a same-sex couple in a romcom that takes place over the holidays.

Happiest Season tells the story of a young woman who plans to propose to her girlfriend during her family’s annual holiday party, but then learns that her partner has yet come out to her conservative parents.

TriStar Pictures acquired the rights to the picture written by Mary Holland and Clea DuVall, who will also be directing. The 41-year-old actress/ director has previously appeared in movies including Girl, Interrupted, The Grudge and Argo.

On Wednesday (28Nov18) it was reported by Variety that Stewart was in talks to take on a leading role in Happiest Season, and now her name has been added to the cast list on the film’s IMDB page – which only accepts “valid actor credits.”

Marty Bowen and Isaac Klausner will produce and Jaclyn Huntling will oversee for Temple Hill Productions.

“In ‘Happiest Season,’ Clea and Mary have come up with a brilliant twist on the Christmas comedy that is laugh-out-loud funny and deeply moving,” Bowen previously told Variety. “It manages to be both timely and timeless in the best of ways and we think it’s a holiday classic in the making.”

Stewart is also moving away from heteronormative sexuality in her feature directorial debut The Chronology of Water, an adaptation of writer Lidia Yuknavitch’s memoir which encompasses a bisexuality storyline.

“Ambiguity is my favourite thing ever. In terms of sexuality? For sure,” the 28-year-old said in an interview with Mastermind magazine in September (18). “And also in making films, if you perfectly answer every question, you don’t allow for people to have their own experience and really indulge a thought.”

Meanwhile, Stewart is also starring in Elizabeth Banks’ Charlie’s Angels reboot alongside Naomi Scott and Ella Balinska.

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Sam Claflin cast in Charlie’s Angels

Sam Claflin has joined the cast of the Charlie’s Angels reboot.The actor is starring alongside Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott and Ella Balinska, who will play the famous trio, as well as Elizabeth Banks, who is also directing and producing the project. T…

Sam Claflin has joined the cast of the Charlie’s Angels reboot.

The actor is starring alongside Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott and Ella Balinska, who will play the famous trio, as well as Elizabeth Banks, who is also directing and producing the project. This will not be the first collaboration between Claflin and the Pitch Perfect star, as the pair previously worked together on three of the four films from The Hunger Games film series, and Elizabeth was delighted to have her former co-star on board.

“Welcome @samclaflin (heart eye emoji) #EffieApproves,” she wrote on Twitter on Tuesday (02Oct18), referring to her Hunger Games character Effie Trinket.

News of the 32-year-old’s casting was first reported by Variety, though the publication shared no details regarding the specific role he is taking on. Patrick Stewart, Djimon Hounsou and Luis Gerardo Mendez have also bagged parts in the movie, which is scheduled for release in September 2019 by Columbia Pictures.

The Charlie’s Angels script comes courtesy of Banks and British screenwriter Jay Bassu – who has recently written the screenplay of Claire Foy’s The Girl in the Spider’s Web which hits cinemas in November (18). Their story is based on an earlier version by Craig Mazin and Semi Chellas, and will reportedly focus on the next generation of Angels working for the mysterious Charlie, following the Charles Townsend Detective Agency’s global expansion, meaning the organisation now provides security and intelligence services to a wide variety of private clients.

Claflin recently played one half of a couple stranded in the Pacific Ocean in Adrift, starring opposite Shailene Woodley, and also landed a role in Australian period thriller The Nightingale. His other projects currently in post-production include British crime thriller The Corrupted with Timothy Spall and Hugh Bonneville, while he is also lending his voice to animated picture Red Shoes & the 7 Dwarfs.

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Lucy Liu excited for new Charlie’s Angels reboot

Lucy Liu has given Elizabeth Banks’ Charlie’s Angels reboot a big thumbs up, insisting the film will be “positive” for women. The Elementary star played Alex Munday in 2000’s Charlie’s Angels movie and the 2003 sequel, Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle,…

Lucy Liu has given Elizabeth Banks’ Charlie’s Angels reboot a big thumbs up, insisting the film will be “positive” for women.

The Elementary star played Alex Munday in 2000’s Charlie’s Angels movie and the 2003 sequel, Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, and she can’t wait to see what director Banks and her cast, Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott, and Ella Balinska, will do with the action franchise.

“To me, I think it’s very exciting,” Liu told Entertainment Tonight. “It’s (Charlie’s Angels) like Sherlock Holmes. The material in itself is a very different type of literature – and it’s not necessarily literature. But it is something that people keep coming back to and they’re drawn to. That’s something that needs to be explored and if it needs to be explored on all different levels, then it should be.

“It will only be a more positive result for women.”

Liu teamed up with Cameron Diaz and Drew Barrymore in the first Charlie’s Angels films, but she is not expected to make an appearance in the latest movie, which will also feature Banks as handler Bosley – a role played on TV and the big screen by Bill Murray, Bernie Mac, and David Doyle.

Banks will also produce the film, which is scheduled for a 27 September, 2019 release.

Liu isn’t the only former Angel backing Banks’ revamp – Barrymore is also all for a Charlie’s Angels reboot.

“I am just excited for them, you know, because every generation that brings Charlie’s Angels out into the world is about the power of three women across (sic) and what they can do while loving them and wanting to date them, and working side by side with them, but there’s just something about Charlie’s Angels, that make men and women so happy,” she said. “It’s so positive. If they keep that alive… it’s just going to be great.”

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Kristen Stewart wants to be in Charlie’s Angels

Kristen Stewart “would love” to star in the upcoming Charlie’s Angels movie.The film, based on the hit ABC action-series was confirmed last year by Sony, with reports in September (17) claiming that Kristen was to be involved in the reboot. And when th…

Kristen Stewart “would love” to star in the upcoming Charlie’s Angels movie.

The film, based on the hit ABC action-series was confirmed last year by Sony, with reports in September (17) claiming that Kristen was to be involved in the reboot. And when the Chanel ambassador stepped out in Los Angeles as part of a promotional appearance for the luxury brand, she revealed that she would be honoured to take part in the upcoming project.

“I would love to do it. I hope that that comes together,” she shared in an interview with Entertainment Tonight on Wednesday. “You never really know that you’re going to be making a movie until you’re, like, standing on that set.”

The 27-year-old also applauded the producers for recruiting Elizabeth Banks as director, after the 44-year-old made her directorial debut in 2015 with Pitch Perfect 2.

“I’m an enormous fan of Liz Banks and I think that she’s the perfect person to tell that story in this era. I would back her absolutely all the way,” the Twilight star smiled, going on to add that she believes the current social climate makes this the perfect time to introduce the long-anticipated follow-up film.

“The movie should still be fun, but if you ground it and make it about women that really know how to help each other, it’ll be perfect to release now. We’re all together and strong,” Kristen added.

Charlie’s Angels first premiered in 1976 and ran for five seasons, with Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith taking on the lead roles in the series. Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore and Lucy Liu starred in Sony’s 2000 movie Charlie’s Angels, which grossed $264 million (£203 million) worldwide, and 2003 sequel Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle.

The reboot is due for release on 7 June 2019.

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Britney Spears wins Fragrance of the Year at Hollywood Beauty Awards

Britney Spears took home the Fragrance of the Year Award when she attended the Hollywood Beauty Awards on Sunday (25Feb18).The singer has released a whopping 24 perfumes with collaborator Elizabeth Arden since the pair first teamed up in 2004, and the …

Britney Spears took home the Fragrance of the Year Award when she attended the Hollywood Beauty Awards on Sunday (25Feb18).

The singer has released a whopping 24 perfumes with collaborator Elizabeth Arden since the pair first teamed up in 2004, and the 36-year-old was honoured at the ceremony for her latest fragrance, Fantasy In Bloom.

Britney picked up her accolade at Avalon Hollywood wearing a daring sheer mini-dress decorated with embellishment and beading, and her loose blonde tresses were styled by hairstylist Lorenzo Martin.

The Piece of Me hitmaker has had huge success with her Fantasy fragrance collection, which boasts 16 different perfumes in total, and was delighted to be rewarded for the latest addition to the set.

“Wow! Thank you #HollywoodBeautyAwards!!! So honored to have Fantasy In Bloom named #FragranceoftheYear,” the popstar wrote on her Twitter account when she learned the news.

Ron Rolleston, Revlon’s executive vice-president of Global Fragrance Marketing, presented the 36-year-old with her prize at the black tie dinner gala, which also benefited the Helen Woodward Animal Center.

The Grammy winner will soon be kicking off the 12-date North American leg of her Britney: Piece of Me Tour when she performs at the MGM National Harbor in Maryland on July 12 (18).

The event was also attended by Black Panther star Danai Gurira who donned a coral-embellished long-sleeved dress, a black clutch, and matching stilettos selected by stylist Thomas Carter Phillips. The 40-year-old Tony winner was spotted mingling with Samuel L Jackson at the bash, and the Pulp Fiction actor took to Instagram to sing Danai’s praises.

“I’ve Always been impressed by @danaigurira, glad y’all caught up!!” said the 69-year-old.

Other attendees included socialite Paris Hilton, and actresses Elizabeth Banks and Kat Graham.

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