Daily Archives: September 5, 2008

Hellboy II: The Golden Army DVD Expected on November 18th

Universal Home Video has announced 1-disc ($29.98), 3-disc ($34.98) and Blu-ray ($39.98) editions of Hellboy II: The Golden Army which stars Ron Perlman. The 3-disc edition will include a digital copy of the film and around 3 hours of bonus content. A collector’s set containing the 3-disc release will also be available for $59.98. This will include a Limited Golden Army Statue, and an excerpt from the journal of Guillermo Del Toro. The DVD is expected to be released on November 18th, 2008.



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Wild Things Are Coming October 2009

According to ComingSoon.net, the Spike Jonze-directed Where the Wild Things Are is back on Warner Bros.’ release schedule. The adaptation of Maurice Sendak’s children’s book is now set for a release on Oct. 16, 2009. The pic stars Catherine Keener, Benicio Del Toro, Forest Whitaker, Lauren Ambrose, Catherine O’Hara, Tom Noonan, Michael Berry and James Gandolfini with a script written by Dave Eggers.



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Tobey McGuire And Sam Raimi Committed to Spiderman 4 And 5

Deadline Hollywood is reporting that Sony has locked in both Tobey McGuire and Sam Raimi for Spider-Man 4 and 5. It’s time to end once and for all the rampant speculation. Sony doesn’t want any info to leak but Latino Review is  told that both star Tobey Maguire and director Sam Raimi will be returning to make Zodiac screenwriter Jamie Vanderbilt’s script of Spider-Man 4. Sony has recently locked in both veterans of Spider-Man 1 through 3 

Umbrella Today?

If you live in the Pacific Northwest then you might like the website, Umbrella Today.  It is a simple weather site that answers just one question. You can check for rain by ZIP code and subscribe to get daily morning text messages to your cell phone that lets you know if you need to pack a parasol.




How Star Wars Changed The World

A chart from Wired shows how Star Wars influenced the later development of movies, games, TV programs, and other forms of entertainment. You can click twice on the image to increase the size.





Only In Portland Oregon…The Bacon Maple Donut

We have seen the donut but have not tried it so here is a review from Roadfood.

Being a serious coffee city, it makes sense that Portland is also home to many excellent breakfast pastries. You’ll find some of the best, and most unusual at Voodoo Doughnut. We were tipped off to this place by Roadfood.com user Mr. Chips, who described it as a “great place to view Portland’s strong Goth culture as well as sample tasty donuts.” There is a strong counter-culture ambience to this bakery that looks a little like an after-hours club; whether or not it’s Goth, we cannot say. But we can tell you with certainty that the donuts are dandy.
There are beautiful old-fashioned cake donuts with crunchy crust and creamy insides, puffy raised donuts, one glazed behemoth as big as a pizza labeled a Tex-Ass donut (and costing $3.95), and donuts topped with powdered sugar, multicolored jimmies, and all sorts of flavored glazes. The menu listed many mysteries that we’d love to return to find out about, including a no-name donut, a dirt donut, a dirty snowball, and a diablos rex. The most curious item on the menu above the counter was “non existing fritter,” its cost null.
The pastry I recommend the most is one to which Mr. Chips alerted us: a bacon-maple bar. It is a substantial buttermilk long john frosted with maple glaze and festooned with strips of bacon that somehow, magically, retains a welcome crunch. What a great all-in-one breakfast! (From Road Food)


22 SW 3rd Ave.
Portland, OR

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Ultimate Tailgating Cooler and Grill

Be prepared for the pre-game with the Portable Tailgating Cooler & Grill ($160). This portable party bag includes a propane grill, a 3-piece BBQ tools set, and a waterproof beverage cooler, all of which packs into an insulated nylon tote for easy transportation.




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Spore for iPhone Coming Soon, Other Titles Revealed

Electronic Arts has announced that Spore Origins for the iPhone will be available later this month, and has also announced a slate of games currently in development for the iPhone platform. In Spore Origins, users create and control their own virtual life form, growing from a single-cell organism into a more complex being as the game progresses. The iPhone version of the game will feature two game modes and 35 levels, as well as the Creature Editor, which lets the user customize their creature’s texture, shape and body parts to improve offense, defense, perception and movement. In addition, EA announced that Yahtzee Adventures, EA Mini Golf, Lemonade Tycoon, Mahjong, Monopoly: Here & Now The World Edition, Sim City, Tiger Woods 09, Need for Speed Undercover, and The Sims 3 are all in development for the iPhone and iPod touch; release and pricing information has yet to be announced.  (From iLounge)


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Stephen King Interviews Stephen King

Every so often Stephen King sits down to interview himself for the website. He did so again in early September of 2008. Here it is.
Steve: The most natural question to kick off an interview like this would be: Is it weird to interview yourself?
SK: Not at all! Most fiction-writers are schizophrenic by nature. Which makes us crazy, I suppose, but it’s a profitable madness.

Steve: Second natural question: what do you think of the re-vamped website?

SK: Love it. If I didn’t, it would be strange, because it was a fairly costly upgrade.

Steve: Tax-deductible?

SK [laughs]: Ask me stuff I can answer, Steve. Tax law isn’t on that list. But yeah, probably.

Steve: Do you go there often?

SK: All the time. I ghost around the message-board. It’s like being a fly on the wall. Every now and then I get flamed, but sometimes I deserve it.

Steve: Like when you made that dumb remark about how if kids didn’t learn to read and write, they’d end up in the military?

SK: Ow! But I’d have to agree that was badly phrased. Most of the troops I’ve met—and I meet a lot, because Bangor’s a National Guard town—read and write well. But of course, kids who don’t read and write well score down on their SATs and have trouble getting into colleges with scholarship money to give out, and that makes the military look good. There’s nothing wrong with the military option—as long as you clearly realize you’re eligible get shot at, that is—but kids deserve more options. Reading and writing provide them. That’s what I wanted to say.

Steve: So if you could get a do-over on that remark—?

SK: I’d take it. But writers expressing themselves poorly in speaking situations isn’t new; that’s why we’re writers! And the basic point is a valid one. Nor do I think our troops need our constant, unqualified worship. They’re tough guys and gals. They can take care of themselves, and most have got more important things to worry about than whether or not Steve King dissed them at a PEN event in Washington D.C.

Steve: And no diss was intended?

SK: Nope.

Steve: New book in November?

SK: Yeah, short stories. Just After Sunset, it’s called. I wanted to call it Unnatural Acts of Human Intercourse, and the publisher had a hissy-fit.

Steve: I like that title.

SK [laughs maniacally]: Of course you do, you’re me!

Steve: Do you have a favorite in the collection?

SK: There’s one called “A Very Tight Place” that I like because it’s flat-out gross. Also, since it was published in McSweeney’s, it will be new to most readers. There are other stories that were published in smaller mags, as well. One of them is called “Ayana.” I loved the way that one turned out.

Steve: And “N?” That seems to be the one people are talking about.

SK: Yeah, ’cause my publisher teamed with Marvel Comics to create a graphic version of the story. You can still get it on the web. Free in some places, I believe, but I like the iTunes pay-for-play downloads because they’re so crisp and clear. It’s also new to people, because it’s the one story in Just After Sunset that hasn’t been published somewhere.

Steve: Is it long?

SK: Pretty. About 21,100 words.

Steve: That was your attempt to write a Lovecraft-style story, wasn’t it?

SK: Not Lovecraft; it’s a riff on Arthur Machen’s “The Great God Pan,” which is one of the best horror stories ever written. Maybe the best in the English language. Mine isn’t anywhere near that good, but I loved the chance to put neurotic behavior—obsessive/compulsive disorder—together with the idea of a monster-filled macroverse. That was a good combination. As for Machen vs. Lovecraft: sure, Lovecraft was ultimately better, because he did more with those concepts, but “The Great God Pan” is more reader-friendly. And Machen was there first. He wrote “Pan” in 1895, when HPL was five years old.

Steve: Working on a novel?

SK: Yeah. The first draft’s almost done.

Steve: What’s it called?

SK: Under the Dome. I first tried to write it when I was twenty-five or so, but the concept was just too big, and I put it aside.

Steve: That’s long, too, isn’t it?

SK: Oh God. [Laughs] It’s twice the length of Duma Key. Over 1500 pages in manuscript. The first draft weighs 19 pounds. I have nightmares of the study burning down with the hard copy and the thumb-drive both inside.

Steve: When will it be published?

SK: No idea. I want to get the draft done, then go back to work on Ghost Brothers of Darkland County, which is the musical I’m collaborating on with John Mellencamp.

Steve: How close is the musical to done?

SK: A lot of it’s there. The first act (there are two) needs more work, but John’s music is absolutely terrific.

Steve: How many songs?

SK: He’s done maybe fourteen. I don’t know if they’ll all be in the show or not, but I hope so. I’ve come to believe John’s a pop music genius, but the main thing is he works really hard. And he expects others around him to do the same thing. He’s got a nice family and a great sense of humor.

Steve: Want to talk about politics?

SK: Nah, people don’t want to hear that from me. I will say that, as the scary guy, the thought of the two-year governor of Alaska becoming President if McCain got the job and then died doesn’t thrill me. Part of it’s that right-wing bunker mentality, but mostly…well, let’s face it: McCain’s pretty old. At the outer limits of the insurance actuarial tables.

Steve: So you do want to talk about politics?

SK: Really, I don’t. I’ve got an Obama sticker on my car, and I guess that says what needs saying. Call me a tiresome liberal if you want, but I just think it would be nice to have a smart guy running things for a change. We tried dumb and it hasn’t worked out too well.

Steve: Any more movies in the future?

SK: Dolan’s Cadillac, with Christian Slater. It’s wrapped production, and what I’ve seen looks great. My old Kingdom Hospital compadre Rick Dooling wrote it, and—in the words of Bryan Adams—the dialogue cuts like a knife but feels so right.

Steve: TV?

SK: Faithful, the Red Sox book I did with Stewart O’Nan, is supposed to be an HBO mini-series. The script is just goddam hilarious, so I hope they make it. And for the people who liked that book [Faithful], try Stewart’s novel, Last Night at the Lobster. It’s short, and it’s wonderful. Unforgettable, really. It’s a book to read while you listen to Workingman’s Dead.

Steve: Red Sox gonna make postseason this year?

SK: Sure.

Steve: World Series?

SK: I think they’ll be there, yeah.

Steve: Tampa Bay?

SK: Postseason by the skin of their teeth. The Rays are going to have a tough September…and I say that as a fan, because Tabby and I live in the Tampa area during the winter and early spring. [Laughs] We didn’t want to go to Florida, but when you get old, it’s the law. By the way, did you notice that the Rays went from worst to first when they got that Devil out of their name? Coincidence? I THINK NOT!!

Steve: Are you going to write another novel after Dome? Those retirement rumors are going around again.

SK: Novelists retire after every book. Until they get the next idea.

Steve: Have you got the next idea yet?

SK: No, but I’m not worrying about it.

Steve: What is worrying you?

SK: Well…you know, that question always reminds me of a Nat Hentoff novel. Best title of the 20th century, really: I’m Really Dragged, But Nothing Gets Me Down. It’s kind of a drag turning 61, but you know what they say: 61 is the new 59. And not too much gets me down. When it does, I put on the rock and roll.

Steve: What are you reading?

SK: A British mystery/suspense novelist named Robert Goddard. The entire oeuvre, which is—happily—quite large. 17 or 18 books, I think. The guy is insanely good, and the books are the kind you stay up too late to finish. I know that “I stayed up late” idea gets bandied around a lot, but with Goddard it’s really true. Clean writing, sympathetic characters, big surprises—what else do you want for your fifteen bucks? I’m also reading George Pelecanos—The Turnaround. Probably his best, most focused book. It’s that shock-of-recognition thing: you really feel you’re there.

Steve: Movies?

SK: Saw a great one called Tell No One. It’s French, with subtitles, but based on an American suspense novel by Harlan Coben. Had the best foot-chase I’ve seen in maybe twenty years. The ending strained my credulity a little, but after a lifetime spent writing make-believe, my credulity is very elastic.

Steve: Double-jointed credulity?

SK [laughs]: I’d say triple jointed!

Steve: Music?

SK: I loved James McMurtry’s new album, Just Us Kids, and there’s a new Al Green soul album that’s insanely good: Lay It Down. I liked the single “I Kissed a Girl,” by Katy Perry—silly, but that image The taste of her cherry Chapstik is exactly right, the perfect detail. I also liked the Madonna single, and—is it Metro Station? A boyband, I think, but very rhythmic. “Shake It” especially. Best record of the summer was Viva la Vida, by Coldplay.

Steve: Anything else you want to say?

SK: Yeah. Let’s go get a hamburger.

Steve: I’m all over that. 

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