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New WWE NXT UK Heritage Cup Tournament And Two Title Matches Announced For Relaunch

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The WWE NXT UK relaunch is shaping up ahead of next week’s new episode on the WWE Network.

It was announced on today’s episode, which will be the final show before the relaunch, that Piper Niven will challenge NXT UK Women’s Champion Kay Lee Ray on the September 24 show.

It was also announced today that NXT UK Tag Team Champions Wolfgang and Mark Coffey of Gallus will defend their titles next week against Kenny Williams and Amir Jordan. The match was made after Gallus issued an open challenge for next week’s episode, which is the first show from the new NXT UK set at BT Sport TV studios in London.

There’s no word, as of this writing, on when #1 contender Ilja Dragunov will challenge NXT UK Champion WALTER, but we will keep you updated. Dragunov won a Battle Royal earlier this year to earn a title shot, but that was before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. WWE has indicated that the Dragunov vs. WALTER feud will still happen.

We noted a few months back how WWE had filed to trademark the “Heritage Cup” name. It was announced on today’s NXT UK episode that the first-ever NXT UK Heritage Cup Tournament will begin on next Thursday’s show.

The eight-man tournament will feature Noam Dar, Alexander Wolfe, Flash Morgan Webster, A Kid, Dave Mastiff, Trent Seven, Joseph Conners, and a mystery man that looks to be revealed next week. It was noted that more tournament details will also be revealed next Thursday.

All matches in the Heritage Cup Tournament will be contested under British Rounds Rules. The rules announced are:

* 6 three minute rounds

* 20 second breaks between rounds

* 2 out of 3 falls

* A pinfall, submission or count out counts as one fall

* The round ends once a fall occurs

* A victory is declared after winning 2 falls

* A DQ or KO ends the match

* Whoever leads after 6 rounds wins

Stay tuned for updates on next week’s NXT UK relaunch. Below are the graphics for the Heritage Cup Tournament:

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Stream It Or Skip It: ‘Judy’ on Amazon Prime and Hulu, a Biopic in Which Renee Zellweger Sometimes Seems Possessed by Judy Garland

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Now on Hulu, Judy put another Oscar on Renee Zellweger’s mantle for her portrayal of Hollywood legend Judy Garland. Set a few months prior to Garland’s death in 1969, the movie uses hit Broadway musical End of the Rainbow as a springboard for Zellweger’s tour-de-force, which we hope will distract us from the fact that we’re watching yet another awards-courting movie-biz biopic.

JUDY: STREAM IT OR SKIP IT?

The Gist: The story begins with a subtly surreal scene: Young Judy (Darci Shaw) and studio mogul Louis B. Mayer (Richard Cordrey) walk along the famous yellow brick road from The Wizard of Oz. He grooms her for a life of fame, fortune and greatness beyond most people’s dreams — and a lifetime of manipulation and abuse. Cut to 1968. Adult Judy (Zellweger) gussies up children Lorna (Bella Ramsey) and Joey (Lewin Lloyd) for a tiny-club mother-and-children song-and-dance show. She takes her payment, $150 cash in an envelope, and the kids back to the hotel where they’ve been living, and they’re turned out. The account is in arrears. She drops them off with their father, Sid (Rufus Sewell), they quarrel, and Judy leaves to meet her adult daughter Liza Minnelli (Gemma-Leah Devereux) for a late-night party. There, she meets Mickey Deans (Finn Wittrock), and they hit it off, staying up all night drinking and talking.

Flash back to the ’30s. Young Judy sits in a diner booth with Mickey Rooney (Gus Barry). She wants to eat a hamburger but is berated before she can take a bite. It’s soon revealed that the diner isn’t real — it’s a movie set. Her stern female handler gives her two pills. Back to the ’60s: Judy has an offer on the table for a residency at a London nightclub. She’s reluctant. She wouldn’t be able to see her kids for weeks, including Christmas. But it seems like her last chance. She accepts, flies over, meets her assistant Rosalyn (Jessie Buckley) and band leader Burt (Royce Pierreson), refuses to rehearse, can’t sleep, wanders the hotel halls, gets jittery, tosses and turns, takes some pills, drinks some booze, takes more pills, tries to sing a little, makes some creaky sobbing noises, is late for her own show, gets scooped up and made up by Rosalyn, wobbles on stage with a dazed look in her eye, slurs a witty introduction and knocks ’em absolutely dead.

She looks stoned and possessed as she sings “By Myself.” As if her voice is emerging from a deep, dark part of herself. She’s lonely and isolated, physically and emotionally, in London. Not all of her shows will go this well. You probably know that. She’s marvelous one night and a trainwreck the next. She shocks two fans, a gay couple, at the club back door late after a show by asking them if they’d have dinner with her. Back on the Ozset, the elephantine Mayer intimidates her for being insubordinate, says her voice comes from here and touches her breast. Mickey surprise-visits her in London on a whim, and she’s up. They’re in love. They come up with a career plan for her, but everything seems so very fragile. They fight and she’s down, and down go the pills and the booze, and more pills. You already know that this won’t end well, Judy’s life. But maybe at least the movie will?

What Movies Will It Remind You Of?: Judy is a classic example of a celebrity biopic where the main performance is the art and everything else is merely fine: Ray, La Vie en Rose, Jackie, etc.

Performance Worth Watching: The trademark Zellweger Squint is in full effect, for better or worse. The reason she took the Oscar, I surmise, is for the singing; her musical performances are stunning.

Memorable Dialogue: Sid says he wants custody of Lorna and Joey for the school year.

“Over my dead body,” Judy says.

“No one would be surprised, believe me,” Sid retorts.

Sex and Skin: None.

Our Take: Yeah, Judy is Oscar bait, but it’s pretty good Oscar bait. The overstylized flashbacks work pretty well, breaking up the film’s boilerplate structure with some lightly fantastical visual tricks, and establishing the origin of Judy’s substance use disorder. You’ll sympathize. You’ll a light #MeToo sting. You’ll wish she had lived at a time when we better understood drug abuse, and had treatments for it, and didn’t stigmatize people for it as much. Judy Garland was chewed up and spit out by a grotesque and exploitative business; she was corrupted so early, her destiny was to crash and burn, and you could make a case that it was pretty much set up to be that way.

So the heart of the film is compelling, its emotions hard-earned. You’ll wish Buckley had more to do, but she makes the most of a character rendered slight (watch Wild Rose, I’m Thinking of Ending Things and HBO’s Chernobyl to witness the arc of a star on the rise). Of course, this is Zellweger’s party, and she doesn’t lose her grip on the heart of the story, even when her physical affectations border on overwrought and distracting. She coasts on the brilliance of her “By Myself” and “Over the Rainbow” performances, which are truly worth the price of admission. Would I go so far as to say they’re transcendent? Yes, and unexpectedly so.

Our Call: STREAM IT. Judy is extraordinary in its most crucial scenes, making it stand ever so slightly above the standard movie-star bio.

John Serba is a freelance writer and film critic based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Read more of his work at johnserbaatlarge.com or follow him on Twitter: @johnserba.

Watch Judy on Amazon Prime

Watch Judy on Hulu

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Game of Thrones bosses explain why they left out major character

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Despite a wealth of source material available for mining, the Game of Thrones series wasn’t afraid to deviate from George RR Martin’s novels. (For better or worse.)

Now, with the dust finally settled on Thrones‘ controversial final season, series bosses David Benioff and Dan Weiss have revealed why one popular character from the books never made it to the small screen.

We’re talking about Lady Stoneheart, the vengeful resurrected form of Catelyn Stark and leader of the Brotherhood without Banners.

HBO

Related: Game of Thrones: 8 of the biggest differences between HBO’s hit series and George RR Martin’s novels

Detailing their reasons for Lady Stoneheart’s omission, Benioff and Weiss argued that calls for the character to appear came off the back of “one great scene” in A Storm of Swords, rather than anything more substantial (via Entertainment Weekly).

“There was never really much debate about [including Lady Stoneheart],” Benioff explained, before outlining the three key reasons Thrones fans never got to see the return of Michelle Fairley.

The first was to avoid spoilers from Martin’s upcoming books, while the second was to avoid “diminishing the impact” of Jon Snow’s resurrection later in the series. “We wanted to keep our powder dry for that,” they added.

catelyn stark in game of thrones s03e09 'the rains of castamere'

HBO/Helen Sloan

And thirdly, because Catelyn had such a good death at the Red Wedding. “Catelyn’s last moment was so fantastic, and Michelle is such a great actress, to bring her back as a zombie who doesn’t speak felt like diminishing returns,” Benioff said.

Compelling reasoning or a few good excuses made with the benefit of hindsight? We’ll let you decide that one.

Game of Thrones seasons 1-8 are now available on DVD and Blu-ray.


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Doctor Who’s Jodie Whittaker set for Who Do You Think You Are?

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Doctor Who‘s Jodie Whittaker is set to uncover “uncomfortable truths” about her family in the new series of Who Do You Think You Are?

Jodie is among the celebrities unravelling their family history in the new four-part series, alongside Britain’s Got Talent‘s David Walliams, Silent Witness star Liz Carr and Gavin and Stacey‘s Ruth Jones.

In her episode, Jodie will learn about “the poignant reality” behind a family myth involving her great uncle’s sacrifice in World War One while also unearthing some “uncomfortable truths” about her great-great grandfather in Yorkshire.

BBC One/Wall To Wall

In a statement, Jodie said: “Who Do You Think You Are? took me on an incredible journey through some of my family history. I discovered people and events that I had no idea existed before this.

“I was lucky to go home and see my mum and dad, lucky to see places I’d never been to before, and lucky to meet and shake hands with some wonderful and intelligent people whose insight into history blew my mind.

“And only in February did I embark on this journey, and knowing where we are now, it feels even more special to have had this adventure.”

In his episode, David Walliams will learn about a great-great grandfather who, after becoming blind, forged a career as a travelling entertainer.

He also uncovers a tragic story surrounding his paternal great grandfather’s experiences following WWI.

who do you think you are   david walliams

BBC One/Wall To Wall

David said of the experience: “I’m delighted to have taken part in the series. I started off the journey knowing very little about my ancestry.

“In making the programme I found out lots of family history I would never would have learned of. I was pleased to discover that being an entertainer runs in the family.”

Meanwhile, Liz Carr will take a trip to County Armagh, Northern Ireland to expose an ancestor’s role in an attempted murder, and Ruth Jones will discover that her paternal grandfather was a key player in the Medical Aid Societies of South Wales, which provided a model for the National Health Service.

The new series of Who Do You Think You Are? launches on BBC One this October. Doctor Who airs on BBC One in the UK and BBC America in the US, and will return for a festive special.



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