Monthly Archives: July 2011

I Would So Buy Ben & Jerry’s Boba Fett Carbonite Crunch Ice Cream If It Were Real

Who wouldn’t love vanilla ice cream with a salted caramel swirl and miniature chocolate Han Solo’s frozen in carbonite? Ok so it’s not real, but let’s hope Ben or Jerry are listening. They could release it with a lightsaber scooper.

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How Did Christopher Nolan Film The Zero Gravity Fight Sequences In Inception?

Here is a 10 minute documentary with Christopher Nolan and his special effects team explaining how they filmed the rotating corridor and zero gravity fight sequences in his masterpiece Inception.

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Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction Blu-ray Finally Gets Released On October 4, 2011

Lionsgate and Miramax have officially announced the release of Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction ($19.99) on Blu-ray. The long awaited remastered film is due on October 4, 2011 and includes the following special features:

- Retrospective Cast Interviews

- Critics Corner: Then and Now

- Pulp Fiction: The Facts featurette

- Deleted Scenes

- Behind the Scenes Montages

- Production Design featurette

- Siskel and Ebert At the Movies – The Tarantino Generation

- Independent Spirit Awards

- Cannes Film Festival – Palm d’Or Acceptance Speech

- Charlie Rose Show – Interview with Quentin Tarantino

- Theatrical Trailers and TV Spots

- Stills Gallery

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OK Go – All Is Not Lost Video

OK Go teamed up with director Trish Sie, the modern dance troupe Pilobolus and a team from Google to create the latest HTML5 Chrome Experiment and musical experience.

The project showcases the latest in modern browser technology, using 12 separate windows to create a kaleidoscopic dance that is partially choreographed by the viewer.

At the beginning of the experience, users are invited to type a message in English, Japanese, or any language using the Roman or Katakana alphabets, and the message is incorporated into the dance.

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How To Gain Early Access To J.K. Rowling’s Pottermore

There is a hidden link in the You ask, we answer blog post from July 19th, which took you to an interview J.K. Rowling gave in 2000.

In that interview was some interesting information about a Magical Quill, located in Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The Magical Quill detects the birth of a magical child and writes their name down in a large book. Every year, Professor McGonagall checks the book and sends owls to the children who are turning eleven, to inform them that they have a place at Hogwarts.

Each day for seven days, from July 31 to August 6, a clue will be placed on the Pottermore homepage to help you locate The Magical Quill. If you find it, you’ll have the chance to gain early access to Pottermore.

There will be a new clue every day, and each clue will relate to a different book in the Harry Potter series. On Day 1 the clue will relate to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, on Day 2 the clue will relate to Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and so forth. The clues will also vary in difficulty. On Days 1-3 the clues will be harder, and on Days 4-7 the clues will be easier.

To find The Magical Quill, you need to solve the clue and add the answer to the end of the web address http://quill.pottermore.com/ This will lead you to a website where The Magical Quill will be located while early access places are available. The Magical Quill’s location will change every day.

Example:

Clue: How many books are there in the Harry Potter series? Multiply this number by 10.

Answer: 70

Add this number to the end of the website address. (In this case it would be http://quill.pottermore.com/70)

Hit ‘Return’ to go to the website where The Magical Quill is located.

Once you have found The Magical Quill, you will be redirected to Pottermore.com. If the registration process is still open for that day, you will be able to submit your details to register to access Pottermore early.

It’s important to note that finding The Magical Quill does not guarantee you access to registration, as registration will only remain open while the early access places allocated for the relevant day are available.

For those who miss out on early access to Pottermore, please note the site will be open to all from October. Keep visiting Pottermore to find out when registration commences.

A clue will go live at a random time, so you’ll need to keep a careful eye on Pottermore.com over the seven-day period. However, you will be updated via Pottermore.com and the Insider, when registration for a particular day has come to an end.

Once The Magical Quill challenge is over, Pottermore will send successful early access registrants a Welcome email, letting them know when they will be able to access Pottermore.

They won’t be able to let everyone into the Beta site at the same time, so please be patient. You may have to wait a few weeks for your Welcome email to arrive.

For more information about The Magical Quill and early registration for Pottermore please visit the Help section of Pottermore.com.

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Superheroes Documentary To Premiere On HBO On August 8, 2011

Superheroes, a new documentary film by Michael Barnett, will premiere on HBO on August 8.

Barnett spent a year traveling around the country filming vigilantes — in particular Thanatos in Vancouver, Mr. Xtreme in San Diego, Dark Guardian and Life in New York, and Zetaman in Portland.

From all over America, these everyday citizens don masks, homemade costumes and elaborate utility belts in an attempt to bring justice to evildoers everywhere.

There are currently more than 300 registered superheroes in the United States. Through candid interviews, patrol footage, archival material and motion graphics, Superheroes explores this cultural phenomenon, revealing what inspires these everyday citizens to take the law into their own hands as they try to make the world a better place.

The film also features interviews with: Stan Lee, legendary comic-book writer and former Marvel Comics chairman, who co-created Spider-Man, The Fantastic Four, The X-Men, Hulk and Iron Man; Lt. Andrea Brown, a 24-year veteran of the San Diego Police Department; and Robin Rosenberg, a clinical psychologist and expert on the psychology of superheroes, both real-life and fictional.

Whether they actually protect the public from crime or are just oddball vigilantes, the vast majority of these men and women are motivated by a heartfelt desire to fight apathy and the so-called “bystander effect.”  Some of the superheroes profiled in the film were inspired by the widely reported 1964 murder of Kitty Genovese, in which neighbors heard the victim’s screams without coming to her aid. Others decided to turn their lives around after struggling with violence, depression or addiction.

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Celebrate National Cheesecake Day On July 30, 2011 At The Cheesecake Factory With 1/2 Price Slices

The Cheesecake Factory’s annual National Cheesecake Day celebration is today (July 30, 2011) and the restaurant is introducing a new Hershey’s Chocolate Bar Cheesecake available in all of its locations across the country.

Guests who dine in on July 30th are invited to enjoy a slice of any of its more than 30 varieties of legendary cheesecake for half price and can be among the first to taste the Hershey’s Chocolate Bar Cheesecake.

The new cheesecake features silky smooth Hershey’s Chocolate Cheesecake between layers of moist chocolate cake and ganache with creamy chocolate frosting and chocolate chips.

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Comic Book Legend, Stan Lee To Appear At The Aero Theatre In Santa Monica To Introduce Spider-Man Double Feature On Saturday July 30, 2011

Comic book legend Stan Lee will be in Santa Monica on Saturday July 30, 2011 to introduce a double-feature of the Sam Raimi hit films “Spider-Man” and “Spider-Man 2″ that begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Aero Theatre.

The Marvel Comics icon will also make an appearance about 6:30 p.m. across the street at a meet-and-greet at Every Picture Tells a Story, the landmark gallery and shop on Montana Avenue.

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Bose Companion 20 Multimedia Speaker System

Presenting the highest-performing two-speaker computer system from Bose, the Companion 20 ($250) multimedia speaker system. It lets you enjoy full, natural sound, whether you are sitting in front of your computer or listening from across the room. It’s easy to connect to your desktop or laptop computer, or tablet.

This room-filling performance will bring more life to your music, games and videos. The wide, natural sound is reproduced by exclusive TrueSpace stereo digital signal processing. And you’ll feel the powerful low notes, no matter the listening level without the need for a dedicated bass module.

The sleek, space-saving design of the Companion 20 speakers complements the look of your computer. And, the unique control pod makes it easy to adjust or mute the volume and connect headphones or other audio devices.

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Twelve South Introduces BookBook Case for iPhone 4

Twelve South has introduced its new BookBook case for the iPhone 4. Like the company’s prior BookBook cases, the BookBook for iPhone 4 is designed to look like an actual book, featuring a handmade leather case with hard-back covers on the front and back, open access to all ports and controls, interior wallet pockets for ID, cards, and cash, and a quick tab for sliding up the phone and exposing the rear camera and flash. Twelve South’s BookBook for iPhone 4 is available now and sells for $60.

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Wonderstruck By Brian Selznick To Be Published On September 13, 2011

The wait is over. Caldecott-winning author and illustrator Brian Selznick has a new book entitled Wonderstruck (Scholastic), scheduled to go on sale September 13, 2011. The book offers more than 460 pages of original artwork and takes readers on the separate journeys of Ben and Rose, who live 50 years apart and secretly wish life were different.

Ben longs for the father he never knew, while Rose dreams of a mysterious actress whose life she chronicles in a scrapbook. After Ben discovers a puzzling clue in his mother’s room and Rose reads an enticing newspaper headline, both children set out alone on desperate quests to find what they’re missing. Ben’s story, told in words, and Rose’s, displayed in pictures, weave back and forth, and readers will be surprised at how they unfold and ultimately intertwine.

In Wonderstruck, Selznick expands on the multilayered reading experience that he invented with his first novel, The Invention of Hugo Cabret.

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Two Part Animated Frank Miller’s Batman: The Dark Knight Returns DVD & Blu-ray Due In 2012

During last week’s premiere screening of Batman: Year One at Comic-Con, executive producer Bruce Timm revealed the next wave of DC universe animated features to be released in 2012: Justice League: Doom, Superman vs. The Elite and Frank Miller’s Batman: The Dark Knight Returns!

The Dark Knight Returns will be a two-parter. “It’s going to be very, very faithful to the comic,” Timm promised.

I am thrilled about this news as this is my favorite graphic novel of all time.

For those that have not read the series, here is the synopsis:

“It is ten years after an aging Batman has retired, and Gotham City has sunk deeper into decadence and lawlessness. Now, when his city needs him most, the Dark Knight returns in a blaze of glory. Joined by Carrie Kelly, a teenage female Robin, Batman takes to the streets to end the threat of the mutant gangs that have overrun the city. And after facing off against his two greatest enemies, the Joker and Two-Face, for the final time, Batman finds himself in mortal combat with his former ally, Superman, in a battle that only one of them will survive.”

Further information will be posted at THE FIRE WIRE when available.

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Apple Product Design: 35 Years of Consumer Electronics Infographic

When it comes to industrial design, few consumer electronics or computer makers have the legacy or influence of Apple, Inc. In the last 35 years, Apple has introduced a myriad of products and devices. Artist Mike Vasilev created this infographic for Mashable, highlighting the major Apple product releases and design changes from 1976 through 2011.

Click on image to make larger

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Star Wars Xbox 360

The Star Wars Xbox 360 ($450) features an R2-D2-inspired paint scheme, a matching white Kinect sensor, a C-3PO-themed gold wireless controller, a 320GB hard drive, a wired headset, the Kinect Adventures game, and the new Kinect Star Wars game. The unit will be released on December 31, 2011.

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Stephen King Announces Dates & Cities For 11/22/63 Book Tour

The dates and cities have been determined for the book tour to promote Stephen King’s 11/22/63. Specific details for each venue are still being negotiated but we should have more information within the next few weeks.

November 7th Boston

November 10 & 11 Dallas

November 12 New Orleans

November 14 Sarasota

December 14 Atlanta

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Bridesmaids DVD & Blu-ray Due On September 20, 2011

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has announced DVD ($29.98) and Blu-ray/DVD Combo ($39.98) releases of Bridesmaids for September 20th. Extras will include a commentary with director Paul Feig, co-writer Annie Mumolo and cast members Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Melissa McCarthy, Wendi McClendon-Covey and Ellie Kemper, deleted scenes, extended and alternate scenes, a gag reel, a Line-O-Rama and a never-before-seen “commercial” from Annie’s jewelry employer. The Blu-ray release will also include additional deleted/extended scenes, a Made of Honor: Behind the Scenes of Bridesmaids featurette, a full song performance of Wilson Phillips’ hit “Hold On”, a digital copy, and more.

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The Amazing Spider-Man Poster

Here is the movie poster for the upcoming film “The Amazing Spider-Man” by director Marc Webb (The Office, (500) Days of Summer, Lone Star). The movie stars Emma Stone (Zombieland, The Croods, Friends With Benefits), Andrew Garfield (The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, The Social Network), Rhys Ifans (Notting Hill, Neverland), Martin Sheen (Stella Days, The Double), Sally Field (Forrest Gump, Brothers & Sisters), C. Thomas Howell (Chupacabra, Red Dawn, The Outsiders), Denis Leary (Ice Age: Continental Drift) and Julianne Nicholson (Brief Interviews with Hideous Men). It is scheduled to be released in 3D on July 3, 2012.

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Patton Oswalt: Finest Hour Comedy Special Premieres September 5th On Showtime, CD Released On September 20th

Patton Oswalt is my favorite comedian, so I am pleased to announce that his comedy special entitled Patton Oswalt: Finest Hour will premiere on Monday, September 5th On Showtime. The album will be released on Tuesday, September 20th. Below is the CD artwork by Keegan Wenkman. If you have not seen him perform, I highly recommend that you watch the special, buy the CD and empty your bladder ahead of time as a precautionary measure.

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Batman: Arkham City Collector’s Edition Due On October 18, 2011

The Batman: Arkham City game will be released on October 18, 2011 and there will be limited quantities of the collector’s edition going for $99. It will include a custom Batman statue produced by Kotobukiya, a collectible art book, early access to the Iceberg Lounge Challenge Map and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns skin, Batman: Arkham City album from WaterTower Music including original songs by hit artists, available via digital redemption, Bonus DC Universe animated original movie, Batman: Gotham Knight and four collectible cards.

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Joe Hill On NOS4A2, The Walking Dead & Future Projects

Yesterday I had the rare opportunity to meet one of my favorite authors Joe Hill at Comic Con. He was warm, friendly and very approachable. Joe was kind enough to sign a few books and answer some of my questions about his next novel, future projects and the possibility of writing an episode of The Walking Dead with his father, Stephen King.

Joe is currently working on the third draft of his third novel called Nosferatu which should be released in the summer of 2012. The title is actually spelled “NOS4A2,” and it’s a vanity license plate.

The horror novel is described as a scary road story mixed with a “sideways” vampire tale. The prolific author has about 10 issues left in Locke & Key, his wonderful comic book series that earned him an Eisner award last night.

There are also plans for Locke & Key’s artist, Gabriel Rodriguez and Hill to do a mainstream five-issue superhero book in late 2012/early 2013. Additionally, the duo will collaborate on an original horror story that would run six-issues slated for 2013.

Hill has completed 200 pages on the book that follows “NOS4A2″ as well.

Regarding The Walking Dead, he is 98% sure that he and Stephen King will do an episode that will air during the third season.

I was unable to attend the screening of Hill’s Locke & Key pilot but the response from the fans that watched it was all very positive. Let’s hope that a smart cable channel like HBO picks it up!

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New Avengers Character Posters

Marvel Studios has released four character posters that were designed for this year’s Comic-Con. The interlocking posters, which were created by Marvel’s co-visual development supervisors Ryan Meinerding and Charlie Wen feature Captain America, Iron Man, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Thor, the agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Hulk and the entire team.

Click images to make larger

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LOST at Comic-Con 2011

Learn new LOST secrets in this special clip, straight from Comic-Con 2011.

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A&E Network Announces That Pierce Brosnan Will Play The Lead Role In The Stephen King Miniseries Bag of Bones

Pierce Brosnan will play the lead role in a four hour A&E miniseries based on the Stephen King novel. The bestseller tells the story of novelist Mike Noonan, who retreats to his family’s lakeside home in Maine after the death of his wife, played by Annabeth Gish. Noonan faces strange occurrences and ghostly invasions while becoming entangled in the lives of a widow and her child caught in a custody battle. Kelly Rowland is also slated to appear in the miniseries.

Screenwriter Matt Venne and producer Mark Sennett along with director Mick Garris have all been involved in the process of bringing the novel to the screen for years.

The project will be headed to Nova Scotia, Canada for filming. The two-night miniseries is slated to air in the fourth quarter of 2011.

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Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory: 40th Anniversary Ultimate Collector’s Edition Due On October 4, 2011

Warner Bros. has announced details surrounding the release of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory: 40th Anniversary Ultimate Collector’s Edition. The children’s classic, which has already seen a Blu-ray and Blu-ray digibook release, will be get another edition on October 4th to commemorate the film’s 1971 release. This set will include two Blu-ray discs for the film and special features and a DVD version.

Collectible materials housed in the double-wide box will include a 144-page book featuring color photos and notes, a Wonka Bar pencil tin with scented pencils and eraser and a Wonka Bar box with archival production letters. Purchasing the set also gives the buyer a chance to win a trip for two to Los Angeles.

The Ultimate Collector’s Edition brings over special features from previous releases and adds a couple new ones. These include:

- Mel Stuart’s Wonkavision

- A World of Pure Imagination

- Pure Imagination: The Story of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory

- Commentary by the Wonka Kids

- Four sing-along songs

- Vintage featurette

- Theatrical trailer

Warner has listed Willa Wonka and the Chocolate Factory: 40th Anniversary Ultimate Collector’s Edition with a SRP of $64.99.

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Star Wars Blu-ray: Early Access iPad App

For those who can’t wait to get their hands on the 40 plus hours of bonus material featured on the upcoming Star Wars: The Complete Saga Blu-ray set, Fox has created an iPad app to give fans a taste of what will be included on the discs.

The Star Wars Blu-ray: Early Access app features snippets of special features from all six films, including interviews, video commentaries, concept art, and archival prop, costume and model galleries from the Lucasfilm collection.

The app can be downloaded HERE from Apple’s App Store free of charge. Star Wars will make its Blu-ray debut on September 16th, 2011.

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