TIME Television

The Real Wolf of Wall Street Is Co-Writing a TV Show

Jordan Belfort is co-writing a show about the excesses of Wall Street

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The man behind the Academy Award winning movie The Wolf of Wall Street is co-writing a TV show based on the excesses of Wall Street in the 1980s.

Jordan Belfort, the man on which the movie is based, is writing the show with Rush Hour director Brett Ratner and Australian billionaire James Packer. Belfort told The Australian that “The idea was to come up with a show about that period with really interesting characters.”

Aside from writing this TV show, Belfort is also a motivational speaker and author.

TIME celebrity

Watch Lauren Bacall Say Her Most Famous Line

"You do know how to whistle, don't you?"

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The famed Hollywood actor Lauren Bacall died Tuesday at 89. The Humphrey Bogart Estate tweeted on Tuesday: “With deep sorrow, yet with great gratitude for her amazing life, we confirm the passing of Lauren Bacall.”

Bacall was known for her body of work in Hollywood’s Golden Age, in particular her iconic line from To Have and Have Not, the 1944 movie Bacall co-starred in with Humphry Bogart.

Bogart and Bacall married in 1945 and had two children together, staying together until Bogart’s death in 1957. Bacall also starred in The Big Sleep, Key Largo and Dark Passage, in which she also played opposite Bogart.

TIME Culture

Here’s What It Would Look Like if a Female Superhero Pitched Her Own Movie

Adventures with Angelfire web series takes a comedic look at leaning in for the female hero

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It’s hard out there for a female superhero. Not only do purse-stealing villains tell you, “you’re cute when you’re angry” before getting kicked in the gonads (at least he isn’t asking for a smile?), but bro-“feminist” Hollywood producers won’t take you seriously when you pitch your own summer blockbuster.

Jordan Zakarin and Alison Vingiano created a tongue-in-cheek / slightly-too-close-for-comfort video short about what it would look like if a hero named Angelfire (played by Vingiano) tried to pitch her life story as a movie. Spoiler alert: people are only interested if there is a male co-hero, a male hot zombie/alien/shapeshifter love interest or if the tagline can be “Justice… is a bitch.”

While the first episode of the developing web series, called Adventures of Angelfire, is a comedy, it hits on the hot button issue of women in superhero movies.

“I cover entertainment and specifically movies for a living, and more and more, that is synonymous with covering superhero movies,” Zakarin, a reporter at The Wrap, tells TIME in an email. “And I love some of them! But it baffles me why women can lead every other kind of film (and make a ton of money for studios doing it!), but there’s such reluctance to do that with superhero films. Why is that? There have been a few in the past that underperformed, but we’re in an era where people take these movies seriously, and with the right filmmakers, there’s no reason why they couldn’t be hits.”

While some trolling YouTube commenters are displeased with the idea of a female hero — the creators have been erasing comments exalting constructive criticism like, “wtf is her superpower supposed to be? menstrual bleeding?” — moviegoers are making it clear that they’re ready for a woman to headline a superhero flick.

A recent analysis by Vocativ found that movies with strong female leads who have dialogue revolving around more than just dudes make more money than the competition. Comic book films with women in the ensemble (as heroes rather than damsels in distress) have also been performing well. X-Men: Days of Future Past earned more than The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and Guardians of the Galaxy boasted the biggest August opening weekend of all time — oh, and 40% of the audience was female.

With the president of Marvel Studios giving an interview this month that he hopes a female superhero movie will happen “sooner rather than later” followed by Sony’s pledge to create a female-centered movie set in the Spider-Man universe, things are starting to look up.

Who knows, maybe as the web series continues, Angelfire will get her big Hollywood break, too.

TIME Television

Sharknado 2: Everything You Need to Know Before Watching The Epically Absurd Second One

Get ready for a fin-tastic voyage

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“You know what you did, don’t you? You jumped the shark.”
— Actual line from Sharknado 2: The Second One, as it desperately tries not to jump the shark

If you’re on Twitter come 9 p.m. Wednesday, consider yourself warned. Because literally the only thing the Internet will be talking about is SyFy’s uber-viral, uber-campy Sharknado 2, featuring Tara Reid, Ian Ziering, droves of quasi-celebrity cameos and, of course, a chain saw.

The movie gained more traction than its SyFy brethren Piranhaconda and Sharktopus ever did, and has become a cult classic even for those who have never seen the film. According to USA Today, while only 1.4 million people watched Sharknado’s original airing, a number that grew in subsequent airings, it inspired 5,000 tweets a minute. (We bet Samuel L. Jackson is kicking himself that Twitter was in its infancy during the Snakes on a Plane release).

So if you are jumping on the bandwagon before Wednesday’s premiere, or just need a quick refresher, here’s a crash course in all things Sharknado.

What the first movie was about:
Due to ambiguous reasons (“global warming?” a newscaster guesses) a massive storm and massive influx of sharks have simultaneously hit Los Angeles. Tiger sharks are flying through the windows of Beverly Hills mansions. Hammerheads are eating angry drivers on the 405 freeway. And it is up to one man with the subtle name of Fin Shepard (Ziering) to not only stop an impending Sharknado (which is exactly what it sounds like), but also to reconnect with his estranged wife April (Reid) and kids. His son saves the day by dropping a bomb into the Sharknado. All of our main characters survive, even though two of them were eaten by the toothy predators. (Note to self: When about to enter a shark’s mouth, remember to wield a chainsaw.) Fin and April make out. All is well.

What is the second one about:
Same concept. Different city. The Sharknado has followed Fin and April to New York as they promote their book, How to Survive a Sharknado and Other Unnatural Disasters: Fight Back When Monsters and Mother Nature Attack. (Available for purchase). Now Fin must use his knowledge to save New York from imminent disaster.

WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT?
Lots of symbolic destruction:
The Santa Monica Pier ferris wheel was shown rolling down the streets of Los Angeles symbolizing THE END OF FUN in Sharknado. Swap that for the Statue of Liberty’s decapitated head catapulting through New York to symbolize . . . something about the shark’s threat of freedom or something, and we’re all set.

It might be kind of educational:
As we learned in Sharknado: “Tornados happen when cold and hot air meet. If you drop a bomb in it, you just might equalize it.” Because SCIENCE.

It also might be kind of political:
Although the first film didn’t exactly take a stand against shark hunting, it was kind of implied considering a poachers face got eaten by a shark.

Hordes of cameos:
Vivica A. Fox, Mark McGrath (a.k.a. Sugar Ray) and Judah Friedlander have joined the cast as Finn’s college friend, his brother-in-law and a helpful cab driver, respectively. But there are also tons of quick hits from “stars” who were itching to ride Sharknado‘s viral wave. Watch for Kelly Osbourne, Andy Dick, The Naked Cowboy, Perez Hilton, Al Roker and Matt Lauer, Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan, and, of course, Jared the Subway guy, who eats a sandwich as sharks start eating people in a subway. (Get it? He’s eating a Subway sandwich in the subway!)

A total disregard for human life:
The cast of Sharknado appeared totally and completely unphased when a shark would come out of nowhere and rip someone’s leg off. Reid barely batted an eye when her live-in boyfriend was torn apart in the mansion.

Lots of New York “insider” jokes:
Sharknado’s script was riddled with LA jokes including: “It’s just a little water. Typical Californians afraid of the rain;” and “My mama always told me Hollywood would kill me” — right before letters from the Hollywood sign crushes him to death.

Expect gems like this from the sequel: “This is the big apple. Something bites us, we bite back.”

A renewed sense of patriotism:
May we leave you with Fin’s inspiring speech: “They’re sharks. They’re scary. No one wants to get eaten. But I’ve been eaten, and I’m here to tell ya, it takes a lot more than that to bring a good man down. It takes a lot more than that to bring a New Yorker down.”

TIME movies

Behind the Scenes Look at Lucy, Scarlett Johansson’s Newest Film

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Go behind the scenes of the highly-anticipated film Lucy, starring Scarlett Johansson and Morgan Freeman. The film explores an individual’s brain capacity — the film posits that humans currently use 10 percent of their brains, while asking what might happen if 100 percent was accessed. The film tells the story of a young woman who, when put under extenuating circumstances against her will, is scientifically altered in a way that allows for her to access a much greater capacity of her brainpower. In this sneak peek, the two stars discuss exploring brain capacity, as well as the film’s main character, Lucy. You can see Lucy in theaters nationwide beginning Friday.

TIME Culture

5 Things to Do While You’re Waiting for 50 Shades of Grey to Come Out

Unleash your inner goddess with these recipes, books and vacations

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The trailer for the new Fifty Shades of Grey film dropped Thursday, leaving fans to count the days until it’s released on Valentine’s Day 2015. For those who can’t possibly wait that long, here are five ways to get your 50 Shades fix before next February:

Try on some Grey-inspired lingerie

Designed in part by 50 Shades author E.L. James, this collection of bras, briefs, negligées and stockings comes in a variety of colors: Black, red and (of course) gray. Customers can also purchase the title-inspiring gray tie that Christian wears in the book and a black mask to take things to the 50 Shades of Grey level.

Drink a glass of 50 Shades of Grey wine

E.L. James has created an entire industry around tiding over her impatient fans. The business-savvy author (who has already made an estimated $100 million from the trilogy) teamed up with California winemakers to blend a collection of wines specific to 50 Shades of Grey. The collection has both red and white, and the red “has flavors of black cherry, cocoa powder, creamy caramel and vanilla, leather and clove spice.” Leather? Well, at least one flavor stays true to the book.

Cook up a recipe from 50 Shades of Kale

“What’s the sexiest handful of foliage? A fistful of Kale battles cancer, inflammation, and low moods,” the 50 Shades-inspired cookbook’s website reads. It features 50 recipes centered around the sensual vegetable, fit for vegans and gluten-free fans alike. And for those fans worried that a cookbook won’t help them get their 50 Shades of sexy fix, the authors assure, “50 SHADES OF KALE is a fun and sexy romp powered by kale.”

Take a 50 Shades of Grey vacation

Seattle is so beautiful this time of year. Why not enjoy the city by staying at the Hotel Max, which previously offered guests a special package featuring perks from billionaire Christian Grey’s lavish lifestyle? Don’t forget to drink a bottle of Bollinger Rosé (Anastasia Steele’s drink of choice) before taking a helicopter tour around the city (unfortunately not piloted by Christian Grey).

Just reread the books

It never gets old reading a dozen different descriptions for Christian’s copper-colored hair while Anastasia continually insists that she isn’t pretty. You should have a refresher on which sex scenes come when anyway, so you’re ready to critique the film for its accuracy. After all, there’s a pretty high standard to uphold.

TIME review

Planet of the Apes: That Couldn’t Happen….Right?

DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES, Toby Kebbell, Andy Serkis, 2014. ph: David James/TM and ©Copyright
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is the eighth film in the series. Twentieth Century Fox/Courtesy of Everett Collection

There's science behind the new sci-fi movie—some of it turns out to be pretty sound

Part of the job of any science reporter is to ruin your moviegoing experience. Blown away by Gravity? Here are all the ways they got the science wrong. Charmed by A Beautiful Mind? Sorry, it utterly fails to capture the essence of mathematics (and that moving fountain-pen ceremony is a total fabrication, says Princeton University, where it was supposed to have taken place, so there).

Now comes Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, a film rich in opportunities to take scientific potshots. I mean, c’mon—super-intelligent chimps who form their own breakaway society? Which is in some ways more gentle and noble than the human one they left behind, although they’ll fight if they must? How absurd is that? Could such a thing ever happen?

Well, not next week, but while Dawn isn’t exactly reality based, the science underneath all of that dramatic speculation isn’t entirely bogus either. Take the apes’ transition from ordinary chimpiness to hyper-intelligence, as laid out in 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes. It comes about through an experimental virus that alters the animals genetically. In fact, deactivated viruses are how doctors attempt to inject new, healthy genes into victims of genetic disorders. The technology is still highly experimental, but there’s no reason to think it won’t be perfected someday.

Moreover, while it’s clear that there’s no single gene governing intelligence—and that intelligence itself comes in different types—it’s equally clear that smarts, however you define them, have a genetic component. It’s not much of a stretch to imagine that we’ll identify the genes in question, and find ways to insert them into the brains of both people and, should we be so insane as to do so, apes as well.

Ok, so apes with enhanced intelligence, check.

As for how these simian Einsteins would actually behave, the film is at least plausible on that score as well—as long as you don’t look too closely. That’s how Frans de Waal sees it. He’s an expert on primate behavior based at Emory University, and he says there are key elements in the movie that ring true.

For one thing, he says, chimps may never be fully as intelligent as humans, gene therapy notwithstanding (“our brains are physically three times bigger—this is not a small difference”). But de Waal adds, “chimps do have many mental capacities—thinking about the future, planning ahead,” which are necessary for the sort of strategic thinking they do in the movie. “So that’s not unrealistic.”

It’s also not at all unrealistic that the primates in Dawn would band together to fight their human antagonists. “Chimps do wage war,” de Waal says. “They’re quite territorial.” As an admirer of chimps and other primates, he was worried that his cross-species friends might be stereotyped. “I was afraid they’d portray the apes as aggressive and the humans as angelic—but it’s the opposite. The apes want peace in the beginning.”

Also realistic is the stormy relationship between noble Caesar, the apes’ leader, and Koba, the cranky ape who was scarred both physically and psychologically by cruel humans. “They fight,” says de Waal, “but they reconcile afterward, which is something chimps really do. I’ve studied this for many years.” In real life, he explains, chimps patch up their differences by kissing on the mouth, whereas in the film they make up with a more conventionally manly hand-clasp. But still, bonus points for truthiness.

De Waal notes a few other, less defensible inaccuracies. Real apes don’t produce tears when they’re sad, but Dawn apes do; real apes don’t walk on two legs nearly as much as the Dawn apes. They don’t use spoken language, either, and while de Waal believes they could if they really wanted or needed to, it’s not clear why they would prefer speaking to signing—something apes are already physiologically equipped for. To the extent that that and other forms of ape body language are shown, they’re misrepresented. “The apes’ nonverbal communication has been humanized,” he says.

De Waal’s other complaint, albeit a minor one: “This is very much a macho movie,” he says. “It has only a few female characters. It’s mostly just males running around and shooting each other.” A true portrayal of ape society—even one based on a science-fictional premise—would include typical behaviors like feeding, grooming and sex. “It disturbed me a little,” he says. “It was just like a Schwarzenegger movie.”

With lots more body hair, of course.

TIME Behind the scenes

Go Behind the Scenes for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The movie's director, Matt Reeves, and star, Gary Oldman, talk about their new film.

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Here’s an exclusive look at the just-released Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the highly-anticipated sequel to the 2011 blockbuster Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

In this sneak peek, director Matt Reeves and star Gary Oldman discuss where the last film left off and the status of the apes when this film begins. Now that human civilization has been almost entirely wiped from the planet, the remaining humans struggle for survival as the apes become the dominant species. Oldman also discusses the films use of motion capture.

You can see Dawn of the Planet of the Apes starting Friday, July 11 in theaters nationwide.

TIME movies

Watch: First 4D Theater Opens in the U.S.

You've probably heard of 3D movies - but a movie theater in California is currently offering a movie going experience called 4D

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The first 4D theater in the United States opened this week in Los Angeles with a late-night showing of Transformers: The Age of Extinction.

A “4D” experience means that a 3D movie is combined with features like sensor-equipped motion seats, wind, strobe, fog, rain and scents.

The company behind the innovative movie-going experience – South Korea’s CJ 4DPlex – is betting that 4D will be the next wave in the film industry.

Movies have to be adapted to be played in 4D – recent titles to be given the 4D treatment include Captain America: The Winter Soldier and How to Train Your Dragon 2.

4D systems are currently installed in about 23 countries, including Bulgaria, China, Chile, Japan, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

TIME movies

New Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Trailer Reveals Shredder

And… Whoopi Goldberg

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The latest radical trailer for Michael Bay’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot dropped Tuesday, and it shows highly anticipated action sequences and new characters. This is the first spot to reveal super-villain Shredder. And there’s even a Whoopi Goldberg cameo.

In case you needed a closer look, here’s a screen grab of the TMNT’s antagonist:

He looks kind of familiar, no?

Oh, Michael Bay.

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