The Playlist

Review: 'Marathon Boy' A Shocking, Unbelievable & Fascinating Tale Of A Slumdog Runner

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • November 2, 2011 11:08 AM
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When we sat down to watch this documentary, we had some chips and a tall glass of Coke at the ready, but when it was revealed early on that Budhia Singh -- the tiny, former slumdog dweller turned runner -- has completed 48 full marathons by the time he was four years old, we promptly wiped the crumbs off our shirt and closed up the bag of salty snacks. And then we promised to hit the gym more often. But even that minor fact is just a small part of the utterly riveting and true tale spun by director Gemma Atwal in "Marathon Boy," a film that starts off masquerading as your standard uplifting sports movie and then goes in directions you never see coming.

Oliver Stone To Direct 'The Power Broker' For HBO

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 27, 2011 2:34 AM
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While he's taking a rare detour into straight up genre territory with the thriller "Savages," Oliver Stone is making a return to the familiar world of power and intrigue that has dominated the bulk of his work. From "Wall Street" (x2), "W.," "Nixon," "JFK" and "Alexander" to documentaries "Commandante" and "South of the Border," the director has never found a shortage of material with which to engage in his fascination of men, corruption, politics and power, and once again, he's found another film to exercise those themes.

Producer Brian Grazer Says HBO Will Get The TV Series Portion Of The Mega 'The Dark Tower' Franchise

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 25, 2011 10:37 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Producer Brian Grazer and his awesome hair, has been very chatty talking to press during rounds for next week's "Tower Heist." Over the weekend he shared with us that the three-film, two-television series mega-adaptation of Stephen King's "The Dark Tower" series -- which was dropped by Universal over the summer -- was still moving ahead thanks to a significant budget reduction between $40-50 million. And while there's still no word if another studio will pick up the reins on the project, one of the best homes for adventurous programming on the small screen is apparently throwing their hat in the ring to be a part of super sized franchise.

HBO Movie With Robert De Niro Playing Bernie Madoff Moves Forward As Writer Comes Aboard

  • By Benjamin Wright
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  • October 24, 2011 6:04 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Looks as if fellow legendary actors Robert De Niro and Al Pacino must have had lunch together recently, because De Niro could follow in Pacino’s footsteps by playing a notorious real-life individual for an HBO movie. Perhaps hearing good things from Pacino about his work on “You Don’t Know Jack,” where he walked away with a Best Actor Golden Globe for playing assisted suicide advocate Dr. Jack Kevorkian, it was announced back in May (something we missed due to the crush of Cannes) that De Niro was in negotiations to play Ponzi scheme enthusiast Bernie Madoff in HBO’s adaptation of the bestselling “The Wizard Of Lies: Bernie Madoff And The Death Of Trust.”

Martin Scorsese & Mick Jagger's Music Drama At HBO Now Moving Forward

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 20, 2011 2:48 AM
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Given the five thousand things Martin Scorsese is doing at any given moment, we kind of forgot about this project, a music drama with his long time Rolling Stones bud Mick Jagger, that was set up last summer over at HBO. Penned by "Boardwalk Empire" (on which Scorsese serves as executive producer) and "The Sopranos" writer Terence Winter, it was first announced under the working title "History Of Music," and was initially envisioned by Jagger as a feature film that followed two friends who work in the music industry across 40 years. William Monahan had actually penned a script over at Paramount where it was going under the title "The Long Play" that Scorsese was eyeing to direct. But now that it's over at the cable channel, it has changed focus, though it's no less exciting.

Chris Cooper & Dianne Wiest To Star In Noah Baumbach's 'The Corrections' On HBO

  • By Edward Davis
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  • October 19, 2011 3:09 AM
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  • 4 Comments
While the multiplexes increasingly become a place to house event movies and continue to enable the infantilization of moviegoers' taste -- 3D spectaculars, toy franchises, Michael Bay movies, etc. -- HBO is happy to write checks for big name talent.

Review: 'Sing Your Song' A Fascinating Look At The Activist Life Of Harry Belafonte

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 17, 2011 4:03 AM
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In the pop culture sphere, it's been a while since Harry Belafonte has made a mark musically or on the big screen. His last album came out more than two decades ago, 1988's Paradise in Gazankulu while his last film role was a small appearance in Emilio Estevez's "Bobby" a few years back. But don't think that at 84 years old, Belafonte is merely basking in the rewards of his undeniable entertainment legacy in his twilight years. A tireless activist, "Sing Your Song" is straightforward, and fascinating look at his career at the front of the civil rights movment, striving to end hunger in Ethiopia, looking to find ways to curb inner city violence all within his journey as a musician and actor. Though produced by his daughter Gina Belafonte, the film directed by Susanne Rostock is a balanced, honest look at the life of a man whose success only fueled his work for humanist causes even more.

'The Kids Are All Right' To Become A TV Series On HBO

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 13, 2011 10:24 AM
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  • 3 Comments
The movie-to-TV train continues in full force this year and following in the footsteps of "The Transporter,” “The Lincoln Lawyer,” “Anger Management” and most recently, "Source Code" another film -- albeit one quite different from this list -- is now getting the small screen treatment.

Netflix Change Their Minds Again, Scrap Qwikster, No Longer Splitting Into Two Companies

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 10, 2011 3:30 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Things have been pretty rosy for Netflix these last few years. Starting as a humble VHS-rental company in 1998, they swiftly became the market leader in DVD rentals, helping to pretty much bury Blockbuster, delivering one billion discs by 2007, and reaching 23.6 million subscribers as of April this year. They've also been ahead of the game in delivering a streaming system, which is, after all, where the home video market is heading, and have become the first stop for film fans looking for online content. And 2011 was going pretty well for them; they announced plans to roll out in Europe in 2012, and are going to be producing their own high content with big names involved, starting with the David Fincher/Kevin Spacey collaboration "House of Cards" next year.

Ben Stiller & Oren Moverman Teaming On Biopic Of Legendary Producer David O. Selznick

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 4, 2011 9:53 AM
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  • 0 Comments
It's like the movie gods have decided that us mere mortals are deserving of some good news today. First, of course, there was Werner Herzog joining Tom Cruise's "One Shot" and now one of our favorite writer/directors is pairing up with a solid actor to take on the life of a legendary Hollywood figure.

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