Merida Sexified, "Brave" Director Fires Back at Disney 

Just look at the picture above -- before, for the movie "Brave," Merida is tomboyish in stature, even a little chubby with baby fat. Then, when Disney announced that Merida would be the 11th official princess, all hell broke loose. Why? Because the studio sexified the character, complete with vivacious curves and much thicker, fuller set of hair!

Many protested the new image of Merida, even prompting a petition headed by A Mighty Girl, a blog and online girl empowerment site. Right now, the petition has garnered a 129,278 signatures! The crux of the petition claims that:

The redesign of Merida in advance of her official induction to the Disney Princess collection does a tremendous disservice to the millions of children for whom Merida is an empowering role model who speaks to girls' capacity to be change agents in the world rather than just trophies to be admired. Moreover, by making her skinnier, sexier and more mature in appearance, you are sending a message to girls that the original, realistic, teenage-appearing version of Merida is inferior; that for girls and women to have value -- to be recognized as true princesses -- they must conform to a narrow definition of beauty.

And now, Brenda Chapman, the director of "Brave," wrote to her local newspaper, the Marin Independent Journal, in protest of Disney's new version of Merida saying that: "I think it's atrocious what they have done to Merida."

Chapman, the first woman to win an Academy Award for an animated feature further revealed that, "When little girls say they like it because it's more sparkly, that's all fine and good but, subconsciously, they are soaking in the sexy 'come hither' look and the skinny aspect of the new version. It's horrible! Merida was created to break that mold — to give young girls a better, stronger role model, a more attainable role model, something of substance, not just a pretty face that waits around for romance."

Disney's response to the criticisms? Here's what the studio said to Yahoo:

"Merida exemplifies what it means to be a Disney Princess through being brave, passionate, and confident and she remains the same strong and determined Merida from the movie whose inner qualities have inspired moms and daughters around the world."

That's fine and dandy but Chapman was not having it! She further wrote, "They have been handed an opportunity on a silver platter to give their consumers something of more substance and quality — THAT WILL STILL SELL — and they have a total disregard for it in the name of their narrow minded view of what will make money."

And here's the kicker, "I forget that Disney's goal is to make money without concern for integrity. Silly me."

Wow! Passionate words!

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What's Going On With "Ghosbusters 3?" 

Dan Aykroyd, talking to Shortlist, revealed that, behold, "Ghostbusters 3" is still moving forward despite many setbacks. Promoting Crystal Head Vodka’s 50th anniversary Rolling Stones edition, Aykroyd said he will be meeting with director Ivan Reitman in June to solidify plans. And they have a script!

So what's the treatment for the new "Ghostbuster?" Aykroyd said look no further than J.J. Abrams' "Star Trek!" The new film will focused on an entirely new generation with the older busters passing the torch.

But sadly, Bill Murray will not be part of the ghostbusting team.

As for the plot? Aykroyd said they are very interested in the "anti-matter research that’s going on in the world." The actor mentioned CERN as a possible part of the plot, and why not? Its purpose is to operate the world's largest particle physics laboratory -- a breeding ground for energy!

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Mark Ruffalo AKA Dr. Bruce Banner Explains "Iron Man 3" Cameo 

If you have seen "Iron Man 3" (and really, unless you're hiding in Mandarin's lair, you should have seen it by now), and stayed for the closing credits nugget, you would have seen...SPOILER ALERT...

Tony Stark talking to a sleeping Dr. Bruce Banner. It turns out that the narration throughout the film is a therapy session between Stark and Banner. And no, Banner didn't transform into The Hulk.

So how did the scene come about? Remember when your favorite cast of Marvel's "The Avengers" invaded the Academy Awards this year? Yup? That's when Downey Jr. approached Ruffalo and asked the actor if he would do the cameo and appear in an "Iron Man" movie. Talking to the Huffington Post, Ruffalo said, "It was a blast, I was so excited to be in an 'Iron Man' movie."

And apparently, Ruffalo lives in Mandarin's lair because the actor still hasn't seen "Iron Man 3" and his cameo.

Ruffalo will be next seen in the fantastic crime thriller, "Now You See Me." I spoke with the actor in New Orleans, where parts of the movie was shot, and I did ask him how his life has changed since "The Avengers." I will post my interview with the actor and the rest of the cast of "Now You See Me' very, very soon!

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Monday Box-Office Actuals: "The Great Gatsby" Drops...But... 

It's still great!

Over the weekend, based on studio estimates, "The Great Gatsby" opened to a staggering $51.1 million, but by Monday, when the actuals started rolling in, the Baz Luhrmann movie dropped by a mere, $1 million, still putting the film solidly at No. 2.

And it's quite a feat! For a non-tentpole movie that is not based on a popular comic book or a sequel, but rather on a classic literary novel, "The Great Gatsby" performed splendidly with $50 million ($50,087,184 according to

If you've ever doubted the marketability of Leonardo DiCaprio, stop right now. He's one of those rare box-office stars that can open a movie!

But, "The Great Gatsby" was still not successful in toppling down Robert Downey Jr. and "Iron Man 3." The Marvel flick stayed at No. 1 with $72.5 million.

And Tyler Perry and Lionsgate, we feel your pain! The other new wide release of the weekend, "Peeples," flopped at No. 4 with $4.6 million.

In the international market, "Star Trek Into Darkness" opened strongly with $31.7 million in just seven markets. The sequel to the J.J. Abrams reboot opens in the U.S. this Friday, so move over Downey Jr. and DiCaprio, Captain Kirk and Spock are about to take control.

Here's the list of the Top 10 Box-Office Movies for the weekend of May 10th:

1 Iron Man 3 $72,525,615
2 The Great Gatsby (2013) $50,087,184
3 Pain and Gain $5,001,029
4 Tyler Perry Presents Peeples $4,611,534
5 42 $4,588,209
6 Oblivion $4,114,665
7 The Croods $3,609,028
8 The Big Wedding $2,490,362
9 Mud $2,343,000
10 Oz The Great and Powerful $1,078,233

SOURCE: BoxOfficeMojo

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Watch the Short Film "Police Guys" 

My friend, actor/filmmaker, Jon Lee Brody ("Pawn," "Star Trek Into Darkness"), has created a short film called "Police Guys" that you guys should see! Brody wrote, produced, directed, and starred in the 15-minute film alongside Stephen Kramer Glickman (Big Time Rush), Shawna Waldron (Little Giants), Lester Speight (Transformers: Dark of the Moon), Jonathan Bennett (Mean Girls), Lisa Catara (Charlie Valentine), Gonzalo Menendez (Act of Valor), Alex Heartman (Power Rangers Super Samurai) and Christine Lakin (Step by Step, Valentine’s Day).

Here's more info on the project:

A pair of cops (Jon Lee Brody and Stephen Kramer Glickman) on a stakeout get much more than they bargained for! POLICE GUYS is a fifteen-minute short film/pilot that was written, produced and directed by Jon Lee Brody.

The film was shot in 2 days with little to no budget. Brody sites Robert Rodriguez as his inspiration. “The book ‘Rebel Without a Crew’ chronicles Robert’s journey of making his first feature ‘El Mariachi’ and it’s basically my filmmaking bible. I didn’t have money to throw into this movie. I just had an idea, some amazingly talented friends willing to help me out and Robert’s book for inspiration.”
-Jon Lee Brody

Awww...we support talented filmmakers with passion to make movies!

See "Police Guys" below, and click here for more on Brody:

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