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ReelBlend Podcast #40: Venom Reviews, And Jake Breaks The First Man Tie

The big movies are coming. And that means ReelBlend is the place to be all October. This month balances awards hopefuls with ticket-peddling blockbusters, and the ReelBlend hosts are the right people to keep you up to date and informed on everything you need and want to know about the world of cinema. So dig in!

On this week’s episode, Sean, Kevin and Jake are finally able to settle their First Man tie — with Kevin loving it and Sean just liking it. Jake caught the movie during the recent press day at NASA in Florida, but does he side more with Kevin, or fall into Sean’s (space) camp. Listen and learn.

Sean also saw Venom this week, and gives a non-spoiler breakdown of the film, letting you now if it’s worth your time this weekend. Kevin and Jake are catching it after we recorded, so they will weigh in next week, when we can really dig into Venom, with spoilers.

During the news portion of this week’s show, the guys also discuss the announced PG-13 rating on a new Deadpool movie… which FOX plans to drop into theaters in December. Is it a PG-13 cut of Deadpool 2? Something entirely new? Everyone seems confused, so we try our best to figure it all out.

At the end of the episode, there’s a tease for a review of Bad Times at the El Royale. It’s great, and we’ll explain why… with more to come next week.

Finally, the #Blend game stayed in the Halloween mood with #MonsterBlend, and Kevin had a controversial pick. By “controversial,” we mean “a pick that pissed Jake off.” But we don’t recall him trying to quit the show this week. So we’re making progress!

ReelBlend is a LIVE podcast that we do on CinemaBlend’s Facebook page. As soon as we are done on Facebook, you can download the latest episode (and all of our past episodes) for FREE on our iTunes page! Visit. Subscribe. Like and comment. Review! Apple loves when you have star ratings and reviews, so if you listened, and you liked it (or even if you didn’t), let us know. We also are on Spotify. And Google Play. And basically everywhere that you download podcasts. So download us!

Meanwhile, follow the guys on Social Media! We have an official Twitter feed for the show, so follow @ReelBlend. In addition, follow the guys at @Sean_OConnell, @JakesTakesand @KevinMcCarthyTV. We will be back at it next week, LIVE on CinemaBlend’s Facebook page. See you then!

Billy Baldwin Wants To Raffle Off His Plus One To Justin Bieber And Hailey Baldwin’s Wedding

Do you want the chance to attend the wedding of Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin? You might have that chance, thanks to Billy Baldwin. The actor teased the notion of offering his plus one to his niece’s upcoming wedding to an adoring fan, allowing himself the chance to score a whole lot of dough for the chance to see a wedding ceremony they will never forget. You gotta admit, it’s smart business on Billy’s end. Will it be approved by Justin Bieber or Hailey Baldwin? We’ll have to see, but it might be for a good case. But we don’t know that for sure. Here’s the comment from Billy Baldwin.

Well, that’s certainly one way to get a quick buck (or several million). Of course, it should be noted that Billy Baldwin’s wedding ticket comments to TMZ are most likely a bit tongue-in-cheek. He doesn’t seem to have any plans to sell these tickets. He doesn’t even have the tickets in hand yet, presumably, because the ceremonial wedding plans are still quite a few months ahead. But it sounds like Baldwin is cooking up a scheme in his brain.

Then again, it wouldn’t be surprising if that plan came into fruition, potentially resulting in a lot of money being funneled the actor’s way in exchange for a chance to sit next to him at the big wedding. His potential date would also experience firsthand the union of Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin, as they profess their love for one another in front of their friends, family, acquaintances and various business affiliates. You gotta admit, that would be one hell of an opportunity for a fan. It should also be noted that Billy Baldwin would want to do this for charity, not merely as a chance to get some extra money inside his own pocket.

Furthermore, during Billy Baldwin’s conversation with TMZ, the actor admitted that he recently had a chance to have lunch and/or brunch with Justin Bieber. It was one of the first times he actually got to talk and interact with the mega-famous pop star beyond a few appearances on the red carpet. He claims that Bieber is “a cool guy,” as he suspected, and Billy Baldwin said it was nice to actually get to talk to Bieber and get to know him a bit more.

Of course, it’s worth noting that Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin are reportedly already interloped. The deed was allegedly done a little less than a month ago in a courthouse in New York City. The celebrity couple rushed at the opportunity to tie the knot, even though they previously proposed the notion that they wouldn’t get married until later on, presumably in 2019. Alas, Bieber and Hailey Baldwin already appear to be husband and wife. If the official wedding ceremony does come into play, it’ll be more of a symbolic gesture rather than the real deal. But Bieber and Baldwin are interested in hosting an official wedding ceremony at some point. If that happens, you should be on the lookout for Billy Baldwin’s high-stakes wedding ticket raffle.

Although Russian Trolls Tweeted About The Last Jedi, The Numbers May Not Be As High As They Seem

Although it performed excellently at the box office and won over many critics, Star Wars: The Last Jedi proved to be incredibly divisive among fans, and 10 months after its release, the movie continues to be a source of arguments and debate. It doesn’t look like that will die down anytime soon, and the discussion around The Last Jedi‘s polarizing reactions took a turn earlier this week when a study conducted at the University of South Carolina found that many of the users who criticized The Last Jedi on social media were actually Russian bots. The research paper went so far as to say that more than half of the dissenting tweets against The Last Jedi were politically motivated or not even human, but it turns out that in the case of these bots, they were actually responsible for closer to one in 10 of such tweets.

Having analyzed Morten Bay’s research paper on Star Wars: The Last Jedi, CNET noticed some faults in his approach, particularly that Bay’s collection method only relied on tweets that were sent to director Rian Johnson. Starting with 1,273 tweets, Bay cut that number down to 967, 206 of which expressed a “negative sentiment” towards The Last Jedi. Of that 206, “61 were real people reported to have a political agenda, 11 were bots and only 33 appeared to be trolls.” In the group of 33, only 16 appeared to resemble Russian troll accounts, hence why it’s really only one in 10 tweets rather than over 50%. Had the parameters been expanded (like including tweets directed at Mark Hamill, who has a much larger following than Johnson), maybe that number would increase, but working off just these findings, we’re hardly near ‘more than 50%’ territory.

The conversation surrounding Star Wars: The Last Jedi is certainly complicated, particularly with regard to the negative opinions of it. Many fans had legitimate problems with the story and/or characters, while other criticisms have been politically fueled. So it’s rather difficult to gauge just how much of the Star Wars fanbase disliked The Last Jedi, let alone how many of those dissenting reactions are artificially constructed. As Morten Bay acknowledged, he was working of a “proportionately small sample size” that’s prone to bias, but he also said the main takeaway from his research paper should actually be that pop culture debates can take political turns, and that one can look at fandoms to gauge how political messaging can be “propagated” online. Wherever you fall on Star Wars: The Last Jedi, one thing is certain: the movie will continue to be disputed, likely even after Star Wars: Episode IX wraps up this era of the franchise’s history.

The Skywalker saga will conclude when Star Wars: Episode IX is released on December 20, 2019. As for what else is in store for a galaxy far, far away on the big screen, head over to our Star Wars movies guide for that information.

One Marvel Side Character Who Definitely Isn’t Getting A Spinoff

With 20 films under the MCU so far, there are certainly a lot of characters in this shared universe. Among them, a handful of fan favorites have come out of the woodwork to unexpectedly steal the show from their superhero co-stars. Recently in Ant-Man and the Wasp, the hilarious fast-talking Luis made a triumphant return to the franchise. The character, played by Michael Peña, was an unmistakable highlight of 2015’s Ant-Man, providing some additional comedy to the series, and thankfully the character was given a place in the sequel. While many fans would love to see more of Luis, it looks to be no use to daydream of a standalone movie for Peña’s character, according to Ant-Man series director, Peyton Reed. Here’s what he said:

Peyton Reed tweeted out the comment during a fan Q&A with Fandango when a Twitter user asked if Luis will ever get his own standalone movie or Marvel One-Shot. Although Reed’s quite definite answer regarding a starring role for Luis is disappointing, it’s nice to know that there is some additional footage with the character. In the earlier days of the MCU, characters such as Agent Phil Coulson and Agent Carter were given some time to shine outside of their movies in short films created for the bonus features sections of the Blu-ray releases. Both of these fan favorites traded in their starring roles in Marvel One-Shots for their own television series, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter, respectively.

Considering there’s interest from fans for Luis to get some additional screen time outside of the Ant-Man franchise, a television show for his character could be a great idea to contemplate instead. CinemaBlend’s Mike Reyes recently pitched the idea to give Luis and his heist crew Dave (Tip “T.I.” Harris) and Curt (David Dastmachian) their own series following the security company, X-Con, which was introduced in Ant-Man and the Wasp. The superhero comedy series could be a refreshing addition to their television content, potentially finding a place with Disney’s upcoming streaming service launching in 2019.

The infinitely-expanding MCU has many facets, one of them being its often brilliant use of comedy thanks to talent such as Michael Peña. Although Peyton Reed recently confirmed that Luis won’t be getting his own film, we hope to see the Comic-Con footage soon. Until then, you can see Peña in the upcoming season of Narcos on November 16 and catch him as Luis in Ant-Man and the Wasp, which is currently available on digital, and will be released on Blu-ray October 16.

Is Rambo 5 Turning Sylvester Stallone Into A Cowboy?

When you think of John Rambo, Sylvester Stallone’s iconic and badass Vietnam War vet, what image comes to mind? Chances are it’s a longhaired Rambo, shirtless and diced to the socks, rocking a bandana and wielding a bow and arrow, a big knife or an even bigger gun. An image that you probably don’t think of when you think of Rambo is that of a cowboy, and yet that is exactly what Sylvester Stallone’ looks like as Rambo 5 is set to begin filming. Take a look below to see John Rambo as you’ve never seen him before.

If you didn’t know that Sylvester Stallone was filming Rambo 5, you’d have to think that this was a look from an entirely different movie, like a neo-Western in the vein of No Country for Old Men or Hell or High Water. Yet this image from Sylvester Stallone’s Instagram apparently shows the actor as he may look when he reprises his role as John Rambo in Rambo 5. Apparently gone is the long hair, the tank top and the bandana, and in their place is a cowboy, complete with riding chaps and the requisite cowboy hat. Simply put, this does not look like Rambo.

This outfit isn’t just for show either. It looks like Sylvester Stallone will actually be doing some horseback riding as Rambo for the new film. Check out Sylvester Stallone’s post from the set of the film below:

While these images may not be an official confirmation of Rambo turning into a cowboy, Sylvester Stallone is really teasing the fans with the concept. And if you remember the ending to the last film in the series, 2008’s Rambo, this new look actually tracks. That film ended with John Rambo, at long last, returning to the United States and making his way to Arizona to visit his father. In that ending scene we see that the Rambo homestead is a ranch with horses on it. So if the new film follows that narrative, it makes sense that with no more wars to fight, Rambo probably settled down in that rural home and helped man the ranch. Like Sylvester Stallone himself, Rambo has gotten older and the character’s look has changed with age and with his occupation. He’s no longer a guerrilla war fighter; he’s just an older guy living a simple life. Or trying his best.

Wars always find Rambo, and there are always people in need of saving. Rambo 5 will find the vet taking on a Mexican cartel. So he will probably be minding his own business on the Arizona ranch when violence spills over the border, and he finds himself once again having to take matters into his own hands. We’ve seen Rambo fight all over the world, so this new look and new setting should give this film a different look and feel. The character and the franchise has the opportunity to evolve, and if Rambo 5 has the gritty modern Western shown in these images, it will be breaking new ground.

Rambo 5 is scheduled for release next fall. To see all of the biggest movies coming to theaters next year (there are a lot of them), check out our 2019 release schedule.

Where Gotham’s Season 5 Timeline Will Pick Up

Perhaps the most intriguing thing about crossing that 87-day time gap is fans will assumedly be seeing a vastly different Gotham City in the upcoming premiere, since it will have been stuck in a state of near-lawlessness a fourth of a year. That might not seem like a long time in and of itself, but just imagine if your own neighborhood had heavies like Mr. Freeze, Penguin, Jeremiah and more running everything, and that they had been wreaking havoc since June. Not a lot of silver linings to be found for innocent people, assuming there are any left.

Why Lethal Weapon Wrote Off Bowman

Now, to be honest, I haven’t personally seen a ton of similarities between Wesley Cole and Zack Bowman so far. Bowman’s most notable characteristic was bringing soup to crime scenes, which was a fun quirk, to be sure. He’s also upbeat, but Cole has only been in one episode so far and he’s already far more fleshed out than Bowman ever was. In the coming weeks, maybe it will be clearer why Bowman is out and the new character is in.

The One Mean Girls Note Lorne Michaels Gave Tina Fey

If people seem especially mean lately, it’s because it’s a national holiday for some movie fans. October 3rd has been dubbed Mean Girls Day, as it’s the date that Aaron Samuels asked Lindsay Lohan’s Cady for during Tina Fey’s iconic comedy. In the decade and change since Mean Girls was released, the film has stayed at the forefront of pop culture, with the movie becoming an instant classic. Every line of dialogue, scene, and costume has become iconic, and it turns out that Saturday Night Live head honcho Lorne Michaels had a hand in that. Tina Fey explained this, revealing Michaels helped give Mean Girls its signature style by encouraging its characters to look cool.

Damon Wayans Says He Is Quitting Lethal Weapon

Lethal Weapon went through a big change between the end of Season 2 and beginning of Season 3 thanks to the departure of Clayne Crawford as Riggs. Crawford was ousted after allegations of misconduct on set, and footage released of co-star Damon Wayans clashing with Crawford on set. While the legendary Riggs/Murtaugh partnership wasn’t going to be part of the series in the third seasons, all signs pointed toward a fun fresh dynamic between Murtaugh and new partner Cole. Now, that doesn’t look to be the case, as Damon Wayans says he’s quitting the show. Here’s how Wayans dropped the bombshell:

Damon Wayans didn’t mince words when he shared his plans with EUR, and it seems quite clear that he wants to leave Lethal Weapon because the demands of working as co-lead of an action series at his age and with his health issues are more than he wants to handle. His comments nevertheless will come as a shock to fans who have only had two episodes to get used to a Lethal Weapon without Riggs; what could Lethal Weapon look like without Riggs and Murtaugh?

The actor went on to confirm that he’s “done” with the show and even cited Murtaugh’s legendary line: “I’m too old for this.” Damon Wayans is looking to spend more time with his family in real life rather than his TV family. Still, we have to wonder if there was more to Wayans’ frustration on Lethal Weapon Season 2 than just his issues with Clayne Crawford’s behavior.

As much as it’s difficult to imagine any incarnation of Lethal Weapon without at least Murtaugh or Riggs, Damon Wayans’ comments don’t indicate that he necessarily expects the show to end with his departure. His reference to “the initial 13” may mean that he expects the door to be open for Season 3 to potentially receive an order for more episodes or perhaps for the show to score a renewal for Season 4. He also mentioned in the interview that he was “giving them enough time to find a replacement.” The end of his time on Lethal Weapon may not mean the end of Lethal Weapon altogether.

It’s worth noting that Lethal Weapon just announced the casting of a very Riggs-esque character as a partner for Bailey, and this new character is set to debut in the sixth episode of the third season. Is Lethal Weapon attempting to recreate the Murtaugh/Riggs dynamic with Bailey/The Gute and continue beyond Damon Wayans’ departure? If Bailey and her new partner do become the focus of Lethal Weapon, that would leave newcomer Cole as the odd man out. We’ll have to wait and see. This isn’t the only casting change happening in Season 3, so it feels like anything can happen. Well, except for a return from Riggs.

We’ll have to wait and see. Murtaugh will still be around for at least 11 more episodes, and you can find him on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on Fox.

Birds Of Prey Has Found Its Renee Montoya

No specific plot details for Birds of Prey have been revealed yet, but reportedly the leading heroines will be clashing with Roman Sionis, a.k.a. Black Mask, one of the most powerful crime bosses in Gotham City. Even if she doesn’t get her superhero on during the movie, Renee Montoya is one of Gotham’s best detectives and knows how to handle herself in a fight, so she’ll be a great ally to the more colorfully-dressed protagonists. With Black Canary, Huntress and Renee Montoya covered, that leaves Cassandra Cain as the final leading lady left to be cast in Birds of Prey. In this movie, however, she will reportedly be a young girl rather than a teenager/young adult as she’s usually depicted.