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  • Shadow and Act
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    Watch Episode 1 Of New Web Series "The Girls Bathroom" (4 Black Girls, High School, Chit-Chat)

    Continuing to unload web series from my virtual pile... so far, we're two-for-two; the first two I featured over the last week or so were mostly well-received. Let's see if that trend continues... or not :) Today's title is called The Girls Bathroom, and it follows four teenagers - Red, Blondie, Brownie and Noir - at the beginning of their high school senior year. In each episode, the girls converse as they prep for each school day; Topics of discussion include boys, hair, make-up, fashion and other subjects that tend to be popular amongst today’s teens. The series is a Chapter 3 TV project, created by Darralynn Hutson and Michael Negri. Watch episode 1 below, and leave your constructive comments underneath:

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  • Shadow and Act
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    2011 AFI Film Festival Showcasing African Titles In World Cinema & New Auteurs Sections

    The AFI Film Festival is currently underway, running through the 10th of November (it officially started yesterday, the 3rd). Of note, in its World Cinema and New Auteurs sections are 4 titles we've covered several times on S&A, namely: The Invader, Kinyarwanda, Mama Africa, and in the New Auteurs section, Restless City. And since films in the World Cinema and New Auteurs sections are eligible for their respective section’s Audience Award, any of these 4 films could walk away with the the prize. Screenings will take place at the historic Chinese Theatre, the Chinese 6 Theatres, the Egyptian Theatre and the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.Individual tickets and special passes are available to the general public. Ticket information can be found HERE, including how you can get FREE tickets to all screenings. Full writeups for each of the 4 films, as well as specific screening times and locations, follow below:

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Clint Eastwood's J. Edgar: Review and Round-up

    All eyes are on the last batch of major year-end movies to be factored into the Oscar zeitgeist. Clint Eastwood's J. Edgar, at least, will play better for the older Academy--many of whom lived through the decades depicted in this ambitious J. Edgar Hoover biopic dominated by Leonardo DiCaprio's moving performance in the title role--than the wider moviegoing public. Eastwood acknowledged this during his intro at Thursday's AFI FEST opening night unveiling at Mann's Chinese, thanking Warner Bros., his home for 41 years, for supporting so many offbeat projects that were not mainstream: "Sometimes they turned out pretty good," he said. Indeed, Eastwood has delivered a consistent string of quality films, even after his career peaks, the Oscar-winning Mystic River and Million Dollar Baby. Written by Milk's Dustin Lance Black, J. Edgar cross-cuts between the old Hoover, not willing to release his hold on the reins of power after 48 years and eight presidents (many of them afraid of his secret files), and flashbacks to his life from age 19 through his rise to power at the Bureau of Investigation (eventually the FBI). Hoover started out responding vigilantly to terrorist violence and wound up corrupt, paranoid and egomaniacal. More details and a round-up of early reviews are below.

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  • The Playlist
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    Set Pics Of Ryan Gosling & Rooney Mara Shooting Terrence Malick's 'Lawless'

    While it's not nearly as sexy as the video footage of Terrence Malick in action, directing Christian Bale at the Austin City Limits music festival in September, it's still something. And given how tightly everything else is kept under lock and key for Terrence Malick's films, we'll take what we can get.

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  • The Playlist
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    Liam Hemsworth, James Badge Dale & D.J. Cotrona All Vie For 'A Good Day To Die Hard'

    Wait a minute? Didn't we have a shortlist on this already? Sort of. A couple weeks back it was reported that Ben Foster, Paul Dano, Aaron Paul and Milo Ventimiglia were all going to be reading for the part of Bruce Willis' offspring in "A Good Day To Die Hard." Well, none of those guys survived except for the "Breaking Bad" star and he's got three people fighting him for the job, that he might not get anyway due to scheduling commitments for the AMC show.

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Why Berneys Left FilmDistrict; What’s Next?

    As New York indie distributor Bob Berney leaves FilmDistrict, which is consolidating operations in Los Angeles, he and marketing chief Jeanne Berney will be able to do what they should have done all along. Go into business for themselves. Why manage egos, seek credit and deal with others’ production choices and cozy relationships when you should be your own boss? Let the Berneys run with their own taste and judgement.

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  • The Playlist
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    Leonardo DiCaprio & Sean Penn Have Their Eye On Alejandro González Iñárritu's 'The Revenant'

    It looks like the wheels are turning on the next film by Alejandro González Iñárritu. Late this summer it was announced the helmer behind “Amores Perros,” “21 Grams,” “Babel” and "Biutiful" was setting up his next picture, "The Revenant." Well, it now has backing and two major Hollywood stars are now looking to star.

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  • The Playlist
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    'Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego?' Apparently On Jennifer Lopez's Block

    If you were a child of the '80s, you likely spent some time with "Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?" the first in a series of best-selling, educational and actually pretty entertaining video games that mixed history and geography in the guise of a spyhunt. The basic premise was that you had to catch the dastardly Carmen Sandiego and her V.I.L.E. henchmen by answering a bunch of clues about the locations in the world where they could be hiding. The video game was eventually turned into the awesome '90s kids educational game show, and of course Hollywood came knocking. Disney tried to do something with the property in the '90s with Sandra Bullock but it never went anywhere, but now someone different is gonna ruin another childhood staple.

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  • Shadow and Act
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    The Thing To Keep In Mind When You See “Tower Heist” This Weekend…

    No doubt many of you are going to see Tower Heist this weekend; but as you watch it, there's something I think that you should keep in mind. No, not that the film totally defies logic and the rules of gravity (You'll know what I mean when you see it); But the fact that the project was originally conceived as a black film.

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  • The Playlist
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    Peter Dinklage Talks Acting & Producing Alexandre Rockwell's Indie Comedy 'Pete Smalls Is Dead'

    Peter Dinklage – he of the recent Emmy win for the HBO series “Game of Thrones” -- has been in his fair share of indie films (“The Station Agent,” “Living in Oblivion,” “Human Nature,” “Saint John of Las Vegas”). So when his friend Alexandre Rockwell ("In the Soup," "Four Rooms") approached him to star in his new film, the noir-ish dramedy “Pete Smalls Is Dead” -- which hits VOD today, November 4th -- the actor offered to take on an additional role as a producer.

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