More "Muppet" Cameos Announced! 


Signaling that this could be the greatest Muppet movie ever made, Disney has added more high-profile cameos. The Hollywood Reporter told us that "Alan Arkin, Jack Black, Billy Crystal, Zach Galifianakis and Jean-Claude Van Damme are being recruited to make guest appearances in the new feature, currently shooting around Los Angeles under the direction of James Bobin."

These actors will be joining Jason Segel, whose passion for Muppets was very evident in his narrative arch in "Forgetting Sarah Marshall." Segel will be playing a human who helps reunite the Muppets so they could put on a show to save a movie studio.

Segel co-wrote the script with his "Sarah Marshall" director, Nicholas Stoller. Amy Adams, Chris Cooper, and Rashida Jones are also among the human actors. Adams will play Segel's girlfriend while Cooper is the Big Bad. He hates Muppets and he wants to buy the studio so he can dig for oil. Meanwhile, Jones will star as an ABC executive.

Last week we told you that Jack Black, Donald Glover (Community), Jane Lynch (Glee), Danny Trejo (Machete), Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family), John Krasinski (The Office), Ed Helms (The Hangover), Lady Gaga (yes Lady Gaga!), and Paul Rudd were joining the cast.

BUT so far, Lynch denied being part of the cast.

Here's what we know -- Arkin will play a tour guide, Black will star as a kidnap victim, and Galifianakis will play a hobo.

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So Many Animated Films But Only Three Slots for 2010 Oscar Race! 


What's your favorite animated film of 2010 so far? I have many but among the 15 films being considered, I'm going for Disney/Pixar's "Toy Story 3," Disney's "Tangled," and DreamWorks Animation's "How to Train Your Dragon." And I'm going out on a limb here by predicting "Dragon" will win! Why? Because Pixar has won, so many already, and "Toy Story 3," as much as I adore that film, wasn't really an original. That leaves us with the breathtakingly original "Dragon." Yay!

Here are the 15 features that have been accepted for consideration in the Animated Feature Film category for the 83rd Academy Awards:

* “Alpha and Omega”
* “Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore”
* “Despicable Me”
* “The Dreams of Jinsha”
* “How to Train Your Dragon”
* “Idiots and Angels”
* “The Illusionist”
* “Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole”
* “Megamind”
* “My Dog Tulip”
* “Shrek Forever After”
* “Summer Wars”
* “Tangled”
* “Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue”
* “Toy Story 3”

So why only 3 nominees? According to the Academy's rules for this category, if there are 8 to 15 animated features, a maximum of 3 motion pictures may be nominated. If 16 or more, then a maximum of 5 may be nominated. Last year, 20 films qualified so there were five movies nominated.

And remember how the unheard wonder "The Secret of Kells" sneaked past other contenders to be a final nominee last year? Don't be surprised if some of the unheard wonders this year get nominated such as the indie "Idiots and Angels," the Chinese-produced "The Dreams of Jinsha," the Japanese-produced "Summer Wars," and the great French flick "The Illusionist" inspired by the great French comic Jacques Tati.

Oh, and films submitted in the Animated category may also qualify for other categories including Best Picture.

We have to wait until January 25 to see the full nominations of the 83rd Academy Awards. The Oscars will be presented on Sunday, February 27.

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Sorry Denzel, "Megamind" is Bigger Than You! DreamWorks Animation Flick Remains No. 1 Movie in America! 


Denzel Washington and director Tony Scott were no match for Will Ferrell and Brad Pitt! "Unstoppable," starring Washington and directed by Scott, failed to unseat "Megamind" from the top position.

The DreamWorks Animation 3-D adventure continued to dominate the box-office remaining at No. 1 with $30 million in its second week in theaters. So far, the film featuring the voice of Ferrell, Pitt, Tina Fey, and Jonah Hill has made $90 million total. (Check out my movie review of "Megamind" right here)

Washington's "Unstoppable" debuted at No. 2. The stop-the-train action drama starring Washington and Chris Pine opened with $23.5 million.

Previous weekend's No. 2 film, "Due Date," must settle to the No. 3 position with $15.5 million. The cross-country road trip flick starring Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis has made $59 million in two weeks. (Check out my movie review of "Due Date" right here)

"Skyline," the sci-fi thriller that Universal refused to show in advance to critics, debuted at the No. 4 spot with $11.7 million. Another new movie, Paramount's "Morning Glory" debuted at No. 5. The dramedy set in a network morning show starring Rachel McAdams, Harrison Ford, and Diane Keaton opened with $9.6 million. (Check out my "Morning Glory" review right here)

Here's the estimated Top 10 Box Office Films for weekend of Nov. 12th:

1. "Megamind," $30 million.

2. "Unstoppable," $23.5 million.

3. "Due Date," $15.5 million.

4. "Skyline," 11.7 million.

5. "Morning Glory," $9.6 million.

6. "For Colored Girls," $6.75 million.

7. "Red," $5.1 million.

8. "Paranormal Activity 2," $3 million.

9. "Saw 3-D," $2.75 million.

10. "Jackass 3-D," $2.3 million.

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For My Filipino Peeps! Back-to-Back Movie Reviews of "Noy" and "Sa 'Yo Lamang" 


For my segments shown in Balitang America every Friday on The Filipino Channel, I made special movie reviews for "Noy" and "Sa 'Yo Lamang."

First, let's talk about "Noy." It's the Philippines entry for the Best Foreign Language Film competition at the Academy Awards. Will this Filipino independent film make the short list? One thing is for sure, Coco Martin heads an impressive ensemble cast. Take a look at my review:


Now, let's talk about "Sa 'Yo Lamang" starring Lorna Tolentino, Christopher de Leon, and once again, Coco Martin. It's directed by the award-winning Laurice Guillen ("Tanging Yaman") and it is Star Cinema's offering for its 17th year anniversary. Did I enjoy the film? Take a look:



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Watch My "Morning Glory" Movie Review 


Here's my review of "Morning Glory." For my written movie review of the film, please click here.


Here's more info on "Morning Glory"

When hard-working TV producer Becky Fuller is fired from a local news program, her career begins to look as bleak as her hapless love life. Stumbling into a job at "Daybreak" (the last-place national morning news show), Becky decides to revitalize the show by bringing on legendary TV anchor Mike Pomeroy. Unfortunately, Pomeroy refuses to cover morning show staples like celebrity gossip, weather, fashion and crafts - let alone work with his new co-host, Colleen Peck, a former beauty queen and longtime morning show personality who is more than happy covering morning "news." As Mike and Colleen clash, first behind the scenes and then on the air, Becky's blossoming love affair with fellow producer, Adam Bennett begins to unravel - and soon Becky is struggling to save her relationship, her reputation, her job and ultimately, the show itself.

Cast and Credits
Starring: Rachel McAdams, Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton, Jeff Goldblum, Patrick Wilson
Directed by: Roger Michell
Produced by: Sherryl Clark, Guy Riedel, J.J. Abrams

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