Chris Rock has written a new script that will pair him with his longtime pals Adam Sandler and Dave Chappelle, the Fargo star revealed in a recent interview with the Hollywood Reporter.
Plot details remain under wraps at this early stage in the game, but THR described Rock as “giddy” about the idea. While one would assume the project would be a comedy, judging by the reflective tone of the interview and where Rock currently is in life — doing seven hours of therapy each week — it wouldn’t surprise me if it turned out to be more of a dramedy.
Though they worked together for years on Saturday Night Live, Rock didn’t share the big screen with Sandler until the latter’s 2005 remake of The Longest Yard and eventually, the two Grown Ups movies. They also co-starred together in last year’s Netflix comedy The Week Of. Rock also had a small role as a taxi driver in You Don’t Mess with the Zohan, and played himself in Sandy Wexler.
Rock and Chappelle are comedy contemporaries, of course, who command the stage like few others can. I don’t believe they’ve ever done a movie together, but I’ve always enjoyed Chappelle’s work on the big screen, from Robin Hood: Men in Tights and The Nutty Professor to Half Baked and his more recent dramatic turn as Bradley Cooper’s buddy in A Star Is Born.
It’ll be interesting to see whether Rock calls on his Top Five producer Scott Rudin for this new project. Rudin has also worked with Sandler on Noah Baumbach‘s Netflix movie The Meyerowitz Stories.
Meanwhile, Rock has finished writing a second script described as “Bad Lieutenant, starring an insane actress.” The original 1992 crime drama starred Harvey Keitel as an out-of-control member of the NYPD who uses drugs and engages in threesomes while on the job. Nicolas Cage starred in an unrelated 2009 film that took advantage of the Bad Lieutenant brand and its penchant for excess. I would love to see a female cop go to similar extremes, and can’t wait to see who Rock has in mind, or whether he’d direct it himself.
Rock nearly directed the new Saw movie Spiral, though his shooting schedule for Fargo made that impossible. The trade-off seems well worth it, as Rock as quite good in Fargo as a gangster who the actor calls “the best part” he’s ever had. For more on Fargo, click here for our review, and for additional context regarding the plot, be sure to watch this video.
Doctor Who’s Sonic Screwdriver Started Out As A Literal Screwdriver
Modern Doctor Who uses the sonic screwdriver for a variety of uses, but the handy device began in the Second Doctor era as a literal screwdriver.
Doctor Who fans are used to seeing The Doctor’s sonic screwdriver perform miracles, but the device’s name was originally very literal. Those familiar with classic-era Doctor Who are generally quick to point out how the current show differs from the first run, which charted The Doctor’s first seven incarnations. From romance in the TARDIS to a heavier focus on companions, there’s no shortage of differences between classic and new Who, but one of the most immediately obvious changes is how the sonic screwdriver is used.
Today, the sonic screwdriver is a weapon, a tool, a scanner and a plot device all rolled into one convenient package, sitting in The Doctor’s pocket ready to be whipped out in a host of different scenarios. Despite only appearing to have a single button, The Doctor’s sonic screwdriver can open doors, interact with machinery, scan the atmosphere and enact repairs in mere moments. Sometimes, The Doctor doesn’t appear to be sonic-ing anything at all; just pointing and hoping for the best. Modern Doctors also have a habit of posing with their sonic screwdrivers like guns – something Doctor Who‘s 50th anniversary episode openly mocked through John Hurt’s War Doctor. But despite the omnipotent nature of the sonic screwdriver in the 2000s, the origins of the device are far more humble.
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First introduced in 1968, the sonic screwdriver’s intended purpose was, as the name implies, loosening screws. The Second Doctor landed back on Earth with his two companions, Jamie and Victoria, and something had evidently gone horribly wrong – a gas pipe was generating sea foam in vast quantities, creating an eerie, alien landscape. The Doctor goes to inspect the pipe, but as a meek fellow, can’t dislodge the iron casing. For the first time, the sonic screwdriver is introduced, allowing The Doctor to remove the screws and peek inside the pipe’s control box. Although the original sonic screwdriver was far simpler in design (a small, metallic pencil with a light on the end), the familiar whirring sound was still present. Younger Doctor Who fans might think the term “sonic screwdriver” is just The Doctor’s quaint sense of humor at work, downplaying the power of the device. In truth, the sonic screwdriver was, once upon a time, a literal screwdriver that used sonic waves instead of physical strength.
Given The Doctor’s alien origins (he hadn’t yet been revealed as a Time Lord), it’s natural that his toolkit would contain some futuristic pieces. The sonic screwdriver was science fiction’s answer to a real life, ordinary screwdriver, removing screws that would otherwise be too tough for a manual tool held by an older man. Unlike more recent episodes, it never felt like the Second Doctor was “packing heat” and fans were seldom left asking “why didn’t he just use the sonic?“
While modern Doctor Who undoubtedly changed the role of the sonic screwdriver, the device’s usage was expanded long before Russell T Davies came along. The sonic screwdriver began its transition to a science fiction swiss army knife in the Second Doctor episode “The Dominators,” where it cut through a section of wall, albeit only with a special attachment. But it was Jon Pertwee’s Third Doctor who truly brought the sonic screwdriver to the fore, using his model to open doors, scan new areas, and much more. By “reversing the polarity” during “Frontier In Space,” the Third Doctor proved the sonic screwdriver could be customized to open up new settings, which were subsequently written into the sonic screwdriver’s capabilities.
Despite the sonic screwdriver becoming more versatile in the Third Doctor era, the device was still nowhere near as prominent as it is today, featuring far more sporadically compared to the revived series. But as soon as this fascinating concept was introduced to Doctor Who, writers realized the potential of The Doctor’s new accessory, and quickly began relying on the sonic screwdriver to overcome plot wrinkles and quicken the pace of each episode. The Third Doctor ushered in a new era of Doctor Who, designed to be more accessible and action-based, and expanding the sonic screwdriver’s array of utilities helped deliver that change.
More: Why Doctor Who Continuity Is Really So Confusing
Doctor Who returns with “Revolution of the Daleks” this Christmas on BBC.
Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2 Sequel Name May Have Leaked Already
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Republican Senators Push Back Against Netflix Over ‘Game of Thrones’ Creators’ New Series
The streamer announced earlier this month that David Benioff and D.B. Weiss would be adapting Liu Cixin’s sci-fi trilogy “The Three-Body Problem.”
Republican senators have sent a letter to Netflix chief content officer and co-CEO Ted Sarandos pushing back against the streaming service’s upcoming series “The Three-Body Problem.” Netflix announced September 1 that “Game of Thrones” creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are adapting Liu Cixin’s science-fiction trilogy “The Three-Body Problem” for the streamer with the help of “The Terror: Infamy” writer Alexander Woo and executive producers Rian Johnson and Rosamund Pike. The letter claims that by producing the series Netflix is “normalizing” the imprisonment of Uighur Muslims in China’s Xinjiang province.
The senators point to an interview “Three-Body Problem” author Liu Cixin gave in 2019 to The New Yorker in which he expressed approval over the imprisonment of Uighur Muslims. Human right abuses are reportedly taking place in Xinjiang province, including the detainment of over one million Uighur Muslims.
When asked in 2019 about imprisoning Muslims in Xinjiang, Liu Cixin responded, “Would you rather that they be hacking away at bodies at train stations and schools in terrorist attacks? If anything, the government is helping their economy and trying to lift them out of poverty.”
The letter to Netflix is signed by Martha McSally (R., Ariz.), Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.), Rick Scott (Fla.), Kevin Cramer (R., N.D.), and Thom Tillis (R., N.C.). The Republican members ask Netflix to rethink its working relationship with Liu Cixin considering his comments, while adding, “Does Netflix agree that the Chinese Communist Party’s interment of 1.8 to 3 million Uyghurs in internment or labor camps based on their ethnicity is unacceptable?”
“Netflix’s company culture statement asserts that ‘Entertainment, like friendship, is a fundamental human need; it changes how we feel and gives us common ground,’” the letter concludes. “This statement is a beautiful summary of the value of the American entertainment industry, which possesses innovation largely unmatched in the global market. We ask Netflix to seriously reconsider the implications of providing a platform to Mr. Liu in producing this project.”
Disney came under fire earlier this month for filming its live-action “Mulan” adaptation in parts of the Xinjiang province. The end credits of “Mulan” also include a “special thanks” to the “publicity department of CPC Xinjiang Uighur Autonomy Region Committee” and to the public security bureau in the city of Turpan, which is where detainment centers are reportedly in operation.
With the first installment of the “Three-Body Problem” series, Liu Cixin became the first writer in Asia to win the prestigious Hugo Award. The book is set during the Cultural Revolution when humans establish contact with an alien civilization on the edge of extinction. After the aliens invade earth, humans split off into two camps: one in favor of takeover by the superior aliens and the other determined to resist.
IndieWire has reached out to Netflix for further comment.
New York Comic Con 2020: A Full List of the TV Panels at the Virtual Event
Ready to geek out (virtually) again?
New York Comic Con is back this October, albeit virtually (just like San Diego’s annual event in July), and we’re still going to have four epic days to celebrate our faves in entertainment. Running from October 8-11, panels will be live streamed on the New York Comic Con YouTube channel. Fans will be able to participate in Q&As with the panels’ talent and use YouTube’s Community and Live Chat features to interact with one another.
Below, see the list of panels and events that have been announced so far and keep checking as we update it as more are added and days and times are set. (All times are ET.)
Thursday, October 8
12:00 p.m. Star Trek Universe (CBS All Access): Check out back-to-back conversations with the casts and producers of Star Trek: Lower Decks, Star Trek: Discovery, and surprise guests.
For Lower Decks, join creator Mike McMahan and voice cast members Tawny Newsome, Jack Quaid, Noël Wells, Eugene Cordero, Dawnn Lewis, Jerry O’Connell, Fred Tatasciore, and Gillian Vigman for a special edition of the official Star Trek after-show, The Ready Room, about the Season 1 finale with host Wil Wheaton.
For Discovery, join stars Sonequa Martin-Green, Doug Jones, Anthony Rapp, Mary Wiseman, and Wilson Cruz, new cast members David Ajala, Blu del Barrio, and Ian Alexander, and co-showrunners and executive producers Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise for a preview of Season 3 moderated by Sarah Rodman of Entertainment Weekly.
1:40 p.m. Doctor Who (BBC America): Join series stars Jodie Whittaker, Mandip Gill, and Graham O’Brien as they look back at their epic past two seasons in the TARDIS, which have been packed with shocking twists, turns and surprises, and discuss their favorite moments to date.
2:15 p.m. Truth Seekers (Amazon Prime Video): Join executive producer and series star Nick Frost, along with co-stars Samson Kayo, Emma D’Arcy, Susan Wokoma, and Malcolm McDowell as they discuss the making of this hilarious eight-episode supernatural horror comedy series about a team of part-time paranormal investigators, who team up to uncover and film ghost sightings across the UK, sharing their adventures on an online channel for all to see.
3:05 p.m. Utopia (Amazon Prime Video): A twisted, eight-episode thriller about a group of young comic fans who discover the conspiracy in a graphic novel is real, and embark on a high-stakes adventure to save humanity from the end of the world. Join writer and executive producer Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl) and series stars John Cusack, Rainn Wilson, Sasha Lane, Ashleigh LaThrop, Dan Byrd, Desmin Borges, and Cory Michael Smith for a Q&A.
3:55 p.m. Alex Rider (IMDb TV): Join author and executive producer Anthony Horowitz and series star Otto Farrant for a Q&A discussion as they preview this coming of age spy-thriller series, based on the best-selling, global phenomenon book franchise.
4:15 p.m. The Boys (Amazon Prime Video): Join the cast and showrunner Eric Kripke as they answer fans’ burning questions and tease what’s to come in advance of the shocking finale of the critically-acclaimed second season.
4:50 p.m. Invincible (Amazon Prime Video): Join creator and executive producer Robert Kirkman live as he teases what fans can anticipate from this upcoming adult animated series, based on his iconic comic book.
6:20 p.m. Snowpiercer (TNT): Stars Jennifer Connelly, Daveed Diggs, Sean Bean, Rowan Blanchard, and showrunner Graeme Manson reveal exclusive details and a sneak peek at Season 2.
7:15 p.m. Woke (Hulu): Join the cast and executive producers for an in-depth discussion about the show and why it is so relevant for today’s times.
Friday, October 9
12:40 p.m. The Stand (CBS All Access): Join stars Whoopi Goldberg, James Marsden, Greg Kinnear, Amber Heard, Jovan Adepo, Odessa Young, and Owen Teague, showrunner Benjamin Cavell, and executive producer Taylor Elmore as they discuss bringing Stephen King’s story to life in a conversation moderated by Anthony Breznican of Vanity Fair.
1:15 p.m. The Watch (BBC America): Series stars Richard Dormer, Lara Rossi, Adam Hugill, Jo Eaton-Kent, and Marama Corlett and executive producers Simon Allen and Richard Stokes for a discussion and first look at the new series that pits trolls, werewolves, wizards, and other improbable heroes against an evil plot to resurrect a great dragon which would lead to the destruction of life.
2:40 p.m. Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous (Netflix): Executive producers Colin Trevorrow and Scott Kreamer, consulting producer Zack Stentz, story editor Josie Campbell, and staff writers Sheela Shrinivas, Rick Williams and Bethany Johnson go inside its writers’ room.
4:55 p.m. Resident Alien (Syfy): Be among the first to see 10 minutes, followed by a virtual Q&A with star Alan Tudyk, writer/executive producer Chris Sheridan, and cast members Sara Tomko, Corey Reynolds, Alice Wetterlund, and Levi Fiehler.
5:35 p.m. American Gods (Starz): Stream with your favorite gods as they journey to Lakeside and talk all things Season 3.
7:20 p.m. Archer (FXX): Play along with series stars H. Jon Benjamin, Aisha Tyler, Judy Greer, Chris Parnell, Amber Nash and Lucky Yates as they mine their memories and test their knowledge for this not-to-be-missed foray into the trivia daaaanger zoooone, hosted by executive producer Casey Willis.
7:55 p.m. Monsterland (Hulu): Join cast members Jonathan Tucker, Taylor Schilling, Kelly Marie Tran and Mike Colter and creator/showrunner Mary Laws as they delve into the nightmares and share a look at what happened behind-the-scenes on the series based on the collection of short stories from Nathan Ballingrud’s “North American Lake Monsters.”
8:30 p.m. Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K. (Hulu): Get an exclusive first look at the upcoming adult animated series, hear from creators Patton Oswalt and Jordan Blum and meet our hilarious cast of characters voiced by Aimee Garcia, Ben Schwartz and Melissa Fumero.
9:05 p.m. Helstrom (Hulu): Get an exclusive sneak-peek at the first 10-minutes, followed by a conversation with showrunner Paul Zbyszewski and cast — Tom Austen, Sydney Lemmon, Elizabeth Marvel, Ariana Guerra, June Carryl and Alain Uy — where they discuss what went into bringing this twisted comic to life and answer fans’ burning questions. Moderated by TV Guide Magazine’s Damian Holbrook.
Saturday, October 10
12:15 p.m. A Discovery of Witches (AMC/BBC America): The panel will feature an introduction by author Deborah Harkness and Bad Wolf executive producer Lachlan MacKinnon and a Q&A with stars Matthew Goode, Teresa Palmer, Ed Bluemel, Adelle Leonce, and Steven Cree from the set of the infamous Congregation (in Wolf Studios Wales) where they are filming Season 3.
1:10 p.m. Evil (CBS): Join series stars Katja Herbers, Mike Colter, Aasif Mandvi, Michael Emerson, Christine Lahti, and Kurt Fuller, along with co-creators and executive producers Robert and Michelle King for a conversation around Season 1 and a hint of what’s to come in Season 2.
1:45 p.m. Smallville: Join Tom Welling, Erica Durance, Sam Witwer, Laura Vandervoort, and Michael Rosenbaum for a look back at the series.
2:35 p.m. Fear the Walking Dead (AMC): The panel will spotlight the upcoming Season 6.
3:10 p.m. The Walking Dead: World Beyond (AMC): The panel will spotlight the third series in the universe.
3:45 p.m. The Walking Dead (AMC): The panel will spotlight Episode 1016, “A Certain Doom.”
7:25 p.m. Lost: Join showrunners Damian Lindelof and Carlton Cuse of the hit TV series for this special, one-time event where they’re answering fans’ burning questions.
Sunday, October 11
1:05 p.m. Animaniacs (Hulu): Join executive producer Wellesley Wild, co-executive producer Gabe Swarr and voice cast members Rob Paulsen, Tress MacNeille, Jess Harnell and Maurice LaMarche for a look at the new series.
1:40 p.m. What We Do in the Shadows (FX): Panelists include series stars Matt Berry, Kayvan Novak, Natasia Demetriou, Harvey Guillén, Mark Proksch and the creative team.
2:15 p.m. Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts (Netflix): Join executive producers Radford Sechrist and Bill Wolkoff, story editors Joanna Lewis and Kristine Songco, Karen Fukuhara, Sydney Mikayla and Coy Stewart for a preview of the final season.
3:25 p.m. DC’s Stargirl (The CW): Creator/executive producer Geoff Johns joins series stars Brec Bassinger, Yvette Monreal, Anjelika Washington, Cameron Gellman, and Meg DeLacy, as they relive the first season’s most epic moments and share behind-the-scenes tales and scoop on what’s to come for Season 2.
4:35 p.m. One Day at a Time (Pop TV/CBS): Join the cast and executive producers in a discussion about the series returning to CBS after 40 years, its future, and the importance of Latinx representation on television.
7:10 p.m. Pennyworth (EPIX): Join series stars Jack Bannon (Alfred Pennyworth), Ben Aldridge (Thomas Wayne) and Paloma Faith (Bet Sykes) as well as executive producer Bruno Heller for plenty of behind-the-scenes scoop about Pennyworth’s upcoming second season, in a virtual panel moderated by Damian Holbrook.
7:45 p.m. The Good Doctor (ABC): Join executive producer David Shore, Freddie Highmore, and others in a conversation breaking down the Season 3 finale and previewing what’s to come in the two-part Season 4 premiere, “Frontline,” about the COVID-19 pandemic.
8:50 p.m. Nancy Drew (The CW): Panelists include stars Kennedy McMann, Scott Wolf, Alex Saxon, Leah Lewis, Maddison Jaizani, Tunji Kasim, and Riley Smith, creator/executive producer Noga Landau, and showrunner/executive producer Melinda Hsu Taylor.
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