Mel Gibson and Sean Penn, two actors who have said and done some unfortunate things in their pasts, star in The Professor and the Madman, a film that’s sure to not be controversial in any way. The film tells the true story of the work that went into creating the first edition of the Oxford English Dictionary. That may not sound like the most cinematic of stories, but there’s a lot more to the tale than you might know. Watch the Professor and the Madman trailer below.
The Professor and the Madman Trailer
Alright, let me get this out of the way first. Under the right circumstances, I think both Mel Gibson and Sean Penn can be legitimately good actors. They’ve both delivered strong performances in the past, and I have no doubt they still possess that talent. That said, they also both bring a considerable amount of personal baggage with them in this day and age, which makes any project they’re associated with slightly (or perhaps more than slightly) questionable. So the fact that they’re both appearing together in one film is bound to set off some alarms.
That’s unfortunate, because the story behind The Professor and the Madman could make for an exciting film. Here’s the synopsis of the book that inspired the film:
The making of the Oxford English Dictionary was one of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken. As definitions were collected, the overseeing committee, led by Professor James Murray, was stunned to discover that one man, Dr. W. C. Minor, had submitted more than ten thousand. But their surprise would pale in comparison to what they were about to discover when the committee insisted on honoring him. For Dr. Minor, an American Civil War veteran, was also an inmate at an asylum for the criminally insane.
That sounds neat! And strange! But this trailer makes the movie look like some uplifting, touching drama, which probably isn’t the best idea. But hey, at least both Mel Gibson and Sean Penn both have giant beards. That’s something, right?
The Professor and the Madman actually wrapped shooting in 2017, but it’s been sitting unreleased due to legal issues. Gibson, who produced the film and at one point intended to direct, sued production company Voltage Pictures, claiming they refused him his right to final cut, as well as five additional shooting days. Voltage’s denial was due to the film being over-budget. Gibson and director Farhad Safinia walked away from the project, and Voltage eventually won out in court. Now, the movie will finally see the light of day sometime this year.
In 1953, Hugh Hefner founded Playboy magazine, which has expanded into a global brand including lounges, apparel and an iconic mansion in the 60-plus years since.
Although the late legendary founder, who died in 2017, will forever be known as the face behind the brand, his 27-year-old son Cooper Hefner recently took over as Playboy Enterprises’ chief of global partnerships after a stint as chief creative officer — and he’s closely following in his father’s footsteps.
On Thursday, Cooper visited the Playboy Club in New York City, where he posed for photos on a leather booth, surrounded by multiple Playboy Bunnies, who are waitresses at the clubs.
“Popped into Playboy Club New York prior to meetings tomorrow morning. Great visiting our venue, spending time with guests, and a real treat catching up with an old friend, Jack Goode,” Cooper captioned the post, which included photos of himself with rapper Fabolous and a childhood friend. “We reminisced about our middle school band from a lifetime ago — music that will remain buried.”
The present-day photo of Cooper strikingly resembles an old photo of Hugh. In his photo, Hugh was flanked by six Playboy Bunnies that had all been featured as Playmate of the Month.
Hugh held a similar expression to Cooper in the decades-old black-and-white portrait, captured in the 1960s, in which he sat alongside Joni Mattis, Sheralee Conners, Christa Speck, Joyce Nizzari, Susie Scott and Carrie Radison.
On Sept. 27, 2017, the Playboy magazine founder and star of E! reality show The Girls Next Door died at the age of 91.
“Hugh M. Hefner, the American icon who in 1953 introduced the world to Playboy magazine and built the company into one of the most recognizable American global brands in history, peacefully passed away today from natural causes at his home, The Playboy Mansion, surrounded by loved ones,” a rep for the former Playboy Enterprises founder said in a statement to PEOPLE at the time.
Following his father’s death, Cooper also released a statement and shared multiple black-and-white photos of the late icon on Twitter.
“My father lived an exceptional and impactful life as a media and cultural pioneer and a leading voice behind some of the most significant social and cultural movements of our time in advocating free speech, civil rights and sexual freedom,” Cooper wrote. “He defined a lifestyle and ethos that lie at the heart of the Playboy brand, one of the most recognizable and enduring in history. He will be greatly missed by many, including his wife Crystal, my sister Christie and my brothers David and Marston, and all of us at Playboy Enterprises.”
In addition to Cooper, Hugh is also survived by his daughter Christie, 66, sons David, 63, and Marston, 28, and his third wife Crystal, 32.
PBS previewed two 2019 kids programming launches at Friday’s TCA:
***Animated Xavier and the Secret Museum will premiere on Monday, November 11. Based on the children’s book series Ordinary People Change the World by New York Times bestselling author Brad Meltzer and illustrator Christopher Eliopoulos, the series features Xavier Riddle, sister Yadina and friend Brad as they travel back in time to meet real-life historical figures when they were kids, including Marie Curie, Harriet Tubman, Alexander Hamilton, Susan B. Anthony, and Maya Angelou, among others.
The series is produced by 9 Story Media Group’s award-winning animation studio Brown Bag Films, and will debut nationwide on PBS stations, the PBS KIDS 24/7 channel and PBS KIDS digital platforms. 9 Story Distribution International has worldwide distribution rights outside Canada, while 9 Story Brands is managing global licensing and merchandising rights.
***Molly of Denali, PBS’s first nationally distributed kids series to feature a Native American lead will premiere nationwide July 15 on PBS stations, the 24/7 PBS KIDS channel and PBS Kids digital platforms. The series features 10-year-old Gwich’in/Koyukon/Dena’ina Athabascan Molly Mabray, who will introduce viewers to Alaska Native values, such as respecting others, sharing what you have and honoring your elders, while showcasing strong female role models and how technology aids in communication.
Every Indigenous character is voiced by an Indigenous actor, including the lead character of Molly, who is voiced by Alaska Native Sovereign Bill. Alaska Native screenwriters and producers also are involved and WGBH Boston developed the series with a working group of Alaska Native advisors, and is creating opportunities for developing Alaska Native talent via a script-writing fellowship.
It sounds like it’s time for Harry Potter to meet Colton Underwood
During an appearance on Good Morning America Friday, Daniel Radcliffewas asked by a fan what his current pop culture obsession is.
Unashamedly, the star replied, “The Bachelor I’m doing a lot of.”
That’s right, folks—even everyone’s favorite childhood wizard tunes in to see the latest drama between the current Bachelor, Underwood, and his bevy of ladies.
“I say this to people and they seem surprised,” Radcliffe added. “I would also like to say I used to be like one of those guys who was like, ‘Yeah, my girlfriends makes me watch it.’ It’s not—I’m making the choice. It’s me week after week.”
Clearly, he’s a fan and he’s proud of it.
“I’m very obsessed particularly with this season,” the Beast of Burden star added. “Also, he seems like a nice person this season…they haven’t all been.”
The actor also acknowledged that he wasn’t as friendly toward the show at first.
“I think I used to be like really annoying and snobby about it and then I actually started watching it and I’m like, ‘Ahhh I like this. It’s fine.”
Radcliffe is in very famous company. Fellow stars like Dakota Fanning, John Mayer, Kaley Cuoco and Lea Michele have all admitted to being fans of the franchise.
“Just get me the helicopters, get me the girls crying, girls crying on helicopters,” Mayer previously told Ellen DeGeneres of the standout parts of the show. “If you get tears in flight on The Bachelor, that is prime stuff.”
The Jordan Peele-produced, Nia DaCosta-directed Candyman reboot is generating a lot of buzz, but one question remains unanswered: will Tony Todd, the original Candyman, make an appearance? It seems almost unthinkable to do a Candyman film without Todd, but as of now, there’s no official word on his involvement. The actor himself was recently asked his thoughts on the matter, and he replied that he would very much like to be in the film in some capacity – but he also won’t take it personal if it doesn’t happen.
Actor Tony Todd recently spoke to EW, and revealed that producer Jordan Peele had yet to utter his name five times to summon him into the Candyman reboot. “We’re waiting just like the rest of the world,” said Todd. “I’m hoping I will appear in the film in some form of fashion. Wouldn’t that make sense?”
Yes, yes it would. Todd originated the part of Candyman, aka Daniel Robitaille, in the 1992 Bernard Rose horror film Candyman. Todd’s performance was immediately iconic, steeped in mystery and even a little bit of sexiness (except for when those bees flew out of his mouth). The actor reprised the role in the somewhat enjoyable 1995 sequel Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh, and then once more in the terrible 1999 movie Candyman: Day of the Dead.
But what of this new Candyman film, which is said to be both a reboot and a sequel – similar to the approach of 2018’s Halloween? Would Todd be able to take up his hook-hand one more time? I’d certainly like to think so, but there’s nothing official yet. If it doesn’t happen, I for one will be pretty damn disappointed, but Tony Todd, professional that he is, seems a little more forgiving. “It’s Hollywood, so I won’t take it personally if for some reason it doesn’t work out,” the actor said, adding: “If this new one is successful, it will shed light back on the original. I think the subject matter is more important than any individuals. And I mean that.”
Word has it that Peele and DaCosta want to cast Lakeith Stanfield as the lead in the new film. If so, the Sorry to Bother You actor would play “Anthony, a young man in Chicago who is researching the urban legend known as Candyman.” As is the case with most people investigating Candyman, people around Anthony soon start turning up dead.
The original Candyman remains a classic, and I’m excited to see what DaCosta and Peele do with this new film. Still, I really hope they find a way to have Todd in there somewhere, for old time’s sake.
He says he’ll have to tell producers about his plans to get down on one knee so they can catch it on camera as well as when they have children.
The Geordie Shore star has openly spoken about wedding plans and has landed a second series of The Charlotte Show on MTV which documents her life.
Josh, 24, told The Sun: “I think if we're going to do it then it's going to get filmed, ain't it?
“It's her show now. I can't just say, 'I'm going to propose to you but I don't want to do it on camera'. I can't say that can I. I can't really say it.
“I think it'd be unfair. I think if anything, I should give her the option."
He added: “Obviously I won't tell her that I'm going to propose to her. What I'd do is I'd go to production. I'd mention it to her mum and dad.
“I'd see what's the best thing I could do if I was to do it. But we don't live together, so we'll see what happens with proposals, with children, when we start living together.”
It comes after Charlotte, 28, told her Twitter followers in August she was going to start planning her wedding.
She also told of her desire to have three children with the former Ex On The Beach star despite suffering an ectopic pregnancy in April 2016.
Charlotte soon discovered she had miscarried former boyfriend Gaz Beadle’s baby.
An ectopic pregnancy happens when a fertilised egg attaches itself to a cavity outside of the uterus.
Charlotte said: “Obviously it's always going to be a worry. That is always going to be a worry.
“So I'm just going to have to cross that bridge when it comes to it. Probably going to be very stressful, I'm going to be worried.
“But I was reassured by so many doctors that people go on to have families of ten. Like nothing is going to be affected.
"Obviously I had a fallopian tube removed. And one side of my ovaries. But everything still works fine and I can go on to have a family full of loads of children.
“I would like to have three at least. He (Josh) knows everything. I'm quite surprised about how openly Josh talks about it with us seeing as he's only 24 and I'm four years older. He's very laid back.”
The Charlotte Show series two airs on Wednesdays at 9pm on MTV.
Destroyer is a film from director Karyn Kusama that examines the dangerous and grim life of being an undercover detective amongst a gang of dangerous criminals.
The film follows Erin Bell (Nicole Kidman) as her past mission amongst a group of armed thugs comes back to haunt her when a face from her past reemerges and threatens what is left of her life.
Already receiving much acclaim, particularly for Kidman’s performance, you are left wondering just how true to life it is to be so immersed within a criminal identity, despite being one of the officers trying to fight such people.
We spoke to former undercover police officer Liam Thomas to see just how accurate the film is.
Thomas was full of nothing but praise for Kidman’s turn as the troubled Bell.
"Yes. It is a towering performance from Nicole Kidman. I was moved by her portrayal of Erin Bell."
During the film’s flashbacks, Erin grows incredibly close to her undercover partner Chris (Sebastian Stan) while on her mission, prompting a romantic relationship.
Working alongside criminals only ensures that Erin becomes more deeply entrenched in their lifestyle and relationships.
"You can find an intimacy (mental or otherwise) with a colleague you’re suddenly partnered with that can be both complex and troubling," Thomas said.
"You get hooked on the rush. Looking back, many of the officers I knew who worked undercover ended up with issues.
"It can also be tricky to capture the distance travelled when immersed in that kind of environment, but I think the film deserves to be up there with of some of the best films looking at a dark underbelly of policing."
Impact on family
Thomas also discussed the impact of such a lifestyle on a person’s loved ones.
In the film we see Erin struggle to hold her relationship together with her estranged teenage daughter.
"In many ways, you deceive them as much as the world you infiltrate," he said. "It is not a recipe for harmony."
Thomas revealed he has been in some dangerous spots himself when he was undercover.
"I had my drink spiked once when trying to buy firearms which could have ended very badly, and a case where police corruption compromised a meeting."
What it takes to be an undercover cop
The job, it seems, requires a certain number of qualities.
"Patience, an understanding of the rules of evidence, and calmness that buys you time in potentially stressful situations," he added.
The former cop does think it is worth trying to portray a lifestyle on film, however.
"I think cinema is capable of accurately reflecting any aspect of life with the right talent."
Thomas himself is now an actor and writer working in theatre, TV and film, having recently set up a theatre company, Sleeping Dogs, to champion northern voices on screen, and is also "currently writing a proof of concept script based on my former life."
When asked who he’d want to portray him in a film of his own life, he was quick with his choice.
"As a young ma,. Jack O’Connell, a terrific talent whose background I can relate to. I think he would bring an emotional truth.