Saturday, December 16, 2017

Stealing Baby Jesus - Video of the Day

 VIDEO OF THE DAY 

Though we've seen the nativity story played out many times before, this version is a little different when one of the sheep decides to walk off with the baby Jesus and mother Mary is having none of it.

This Day in Pop Culture for December 16

"Love Story" debuted in theaters on December 16, 1970.

'Love Story' Comes to Theaters

The romantic drama, Love Story, debuted in theaters on this day in 1970. The screenplay was written by Erich Segal who also wrote the novel of the same name. It was directed by Arthur Hiller and starred Ali MacGraw, Ryan O’Neal and Candice Bergen. Considered on the Hollywood’s most romantic movies by many, the film also has about as many haters thinking that the movie was overly melodramatic. Spoiler alert – the girl dies at the end. The film’s most iconic line, “Love means never having to say you’re sorry” was repeated by Barbara Streisand in 1972’s What’s Up Doc to which Ryan O’Neal says, “That's the dumbest thing I ever heard.”

Friday, December 15, 2017

This Day in Pop Culture for December 15

"Gone With the Wind" was released on December 15, 1939.

'Gone With the Wind' Opens in Theaters

One of America’s most classic films, Gone with the Wind was released on this day in 1939. Directed by Victor Fleming, the story deals with the strong-willed southern belle Scarlett O’Hara (Vivien Leigh), her secret crush Ashley (Leslie Howard), good friend Melanie (Olivia de Havilland) and the arrogant Rhett Butler (Clark Gable) during the American Civil War. About 1,400 women auditioned for the role of Scarlett. Filming of the picture was delayed by two years as producer David O. Selznick wanted to secure Gable for the role. At 221 minutes in length, some reviewers felt that the movie was overly long, but that was actually shorter than the original script length. The film received 13 Oscar nomination and won ten including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress and Hattie McDaniel won for Best Supporting Actress becoming the first African-American to win an Academy Award.


Thursday, December 14, 2017

'A Christmas Story Live!' Airs This Sunday

The cast of "A Christmas Story Live!"
Chris Diamantopoulos, Maya Rudolph, Tyler Wladis and Andy Walken star
in A Christmas Story Live! (FOX)

 TV 

A Christmas Story wasn’t a big hit when it came to theaters in 1983. In fact, it wasn’t until after years of broadcast TV viewing that made the film a holiday cult hit. Many years later, the story was transformed into a Tony Award-nominated Broadway musical. And this weekend, that musical comes to the small screen in a big way.

FOX will air A Christmas Story Live! this Sunday, December 17 which several new songs have been written for the three-hour special. Newcomer Andy Walken stars as Ralphie Parker, the little boy who will stop at nothing to get his parent to buy him a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas. He is joined by Maya Rudolph (as Ralphie’s longsuffering mother), Chris Diamantopoulos (as Ralphie’s leg lamp-loving father), Tyler Wladis (as Ralphie's younger brother, Randy) Jane Krakowski (as Ralphie’s teacher, Miss Shields), Ana Gasteryer (as an overprotective mother of one of Ralphie’s friends), David Alan Grier (as the department store Santa Claus), Ken Jeong (as a Christmas tree salesman, PRETTYMUCH (as the Hohman Indiana Carolers) and Matthew Broderick serves as the show’s narrator.

'Deck the Halls' by Pentatonix - Video of the Day

 VIDEO OF THE DAY 

Pentatonix sings "Deck the Halls." (That one guy really needs to do something about that mustache.)

This Day in Pop Culture for December 14

Saturday Night Fever was released in theaters for the first time on December 14, 1977.

America Catches 'Saturday Night Fever'

The movie Saturday Night Fever arrived in theaters on this day in 1977 and propelled both John Travolta as well as the music group, the Bee Gees to even greater stardom that they had already achieved. However, the only songs actually written for the movie were "Stayin' Alive" and "Night Fever." The original release of the movie was rated R, but a second, PG version of the film was released two years later that took out the nudity, bad language and violence. The film was re-released a third time in 1980 alongside another Travolta hit – Grease. The film had favorable reviews and was nominated for four Golden Globes and an Oscar for Best Actor. 

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

After Theater Viewer Frustration, 'Olaf' Comes to TV

Olaf's Frozen Adventure air on December 14 and 19, 2017 on ABC.
Olaf likes to give warm hugs. (Disney)

 TV 

For a limited time, Disney paired the short, Olaf’s Frozen Adventure along with Coco, currently playing in theaters. But many parents were unaware and unprepared that was the case and were upset to have to sit through the Frozen film before getting to the “good” picture. Disney’s plan all along was to have Olaf play in theaters a short time and then “surprise” TV viewers with news that the short would become a Christmas special afterward. The plan may have backfired as some folks may be getting burned out on the Frozen franchise, but true fans (and there are a lot of them) are thrilled knowing that Olaf and the gang will be back on the small screen Thursday, December 14 at 8:00 p.m. on ABC.

Olaf’s Frozen Adventure includes four new original songs and welcomes back the beloved characters (and cast) of the 2013 Oscar-winning Frozen. During the special, Olaf (voice of Josh Gad) teams up with Sven on a merry mission. It’s the first holiday season since the gates reopened and Anna (voice of Kristen Bell) and Elsa (voice of Idina Menzel) host a celebration for all of Arendelle. When the townspeople unexpectedly leave early to enjoy their individual holiday customs, the sisters realize they have no family traditions of their own. So, Olaf sets out to comb the kingdom to bring home the best traditions and save Anna and Elsa’s “first Christmas in forever.”

Olaf’s Frozen Adventure is directed by Kevin Deters and Stevie Wermers-Skelton (who also worked on the Prep & Landing holiday special which will air afterward) and is produced by Roy Conli. The featurette includes a screenplay by Jac Schaeffer and four original songs by Elyssa Samsel and Kate Anderson.

Olaf’s Frozen Adventure repeats on Tuesday, December 19.

This Day in Pop Culture for December 13

Dick Van Dyke was born on December 13, 1925.

Dick Van Dyke is Born

Screen legend Dick Van Dyke was born in West Plains, Missouri on this day in 1925. Best known for his roles in the musicals Mary Poppins, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Bye Bye Birdie and for his starring roles in the Diagnoses Murder and his own sitcom, Dick Van Dyke shows. In Murder, he co-starred with his son Barry Van Dyke. His most recent movie appearance was in Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.