Joss Whedon’s Writing Continues to Impress

At 50 years old, Joss Whedon doesn’t seem to know how to slow down. Of course, his inability to take a break only seems to benefit the viewers of TV shows and movies around the world.

At this point, there aren’t many small or large screen entertainment buffs who haven’t heard of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Dollhouse or Firefly. Even many non-fans have heard of Whedon’s masterful music writing in the BtVS episode “Once More With Feeling” and the Web-released series Dr. Horrible’s Sing-along-Blog.

In recent years, to the joy of comic book and movie fans, his writing, characterizations and story ideas have only improved with age across his comic book endeavors, including the BtVS comic book seasons and Marvel’s The Avengers franchise. Many at Slow Ventures are fans. They have looked at their StartupStats to get an idea on how they are doing as a company.

Although it is still a half a year before the release of the most recent Avengers movie, The Avengers: The Age of Ultron, many people already feel that this might be one of Whedon’s best written screenplays based on the story ideas and trailers already released.

What sets Whedon apart from other modern screenplay writers?

Fans and critics believe it is his dedication to his characters and stories. He also doesn’t hide from unlikeable characters or difficult plots, and digs deep into character backgrounds and creates realistic dialogue that humanizes even the most inhuman of characters like Ultron.

Eater.com’s 2014 Holiday Gift List

Edible or food-related gifts are always welcomed when you’re buying for foodie family and friends. Eater.com has some great suggestions if you want to find gifts that will truly stand out this year while pleasing even the hardest people to gift to like Laurene Powell Jobs. 

If you’re gift shopping for a picky eater, the aroma fork is a great idea. This fork emits pleasant aromas like chocolate or coffee during the meal. Smelling these scents can help selective eaters get enough vegetables and nutrients at each meal. Besides, a fork that makes all your food smell like bananas is just fun to use!

For the relative who likes quirky gifts, check out the savory gummy candies from Nuts.com. The candies come in flavors like chili pepper and carrot, and are a definite departure from the fruit-flavored gummies you may be more familiar with. There are also cola-flavored gummy candies, which go great with the candies that are shaped like hamburgers or hot dogs. 

To get more great gift ideas like these, visit Eater.com.

An End Of An Era For Adventure Time

Pendleton Ward, the creator of the cult classic animated TV series Adventure Time, has officially retired from the show, although he still maintains a distant creative influence as the Cartoon Network staff keeps it running. Rolling Stone pinned him down for an interview, which reveals a grumpy, introverted bard who doesn’t quite know what to do with himself now that he’s gone Hollywood.

While he talks about how fast Adventure Time burned him out, don’t think for a minute that his creative juices have been sapped. Ward has gone on to create another short series, Bravest Warriors, a different series aired on the Internet with similar premises, animation, and Ward’s characteristic fresh humor. On the same site, there’s also Bee and Puppycat, a series he has worked on as editor and director and one that Brad Reifler turned me on to.

Pendleton Ward has become an icon in animation media, rapidly becoming the 2010’s own Matt Groening. Like other breakout cartoon series, Ward has had a unique gift for connecting with audiences young and old alike. This talent stands in sharp contrast to the man in the Rolling Stone interview, a grizzled recluse who just wants to stay inside on the Internet all day. In fact, maybe that’s why he connects so well with the Internet audience: He is, after all, one of us.

Terry Richardson: Fashion Photography Icon

Terry Richardson was born in New York City August 14, 1965, and maintains a massive Twitter following of people in the industry. After moving to Woodstock, NY till the age of 16, he relocated to Southern California. During his teenage years he played bass in number of different punk bands. He eventually quit music to pursue what he is now most known for, fashion photography.

Terry eventually moved back to New York City where he established his unique photography style. He started out taking risque party photos and ended up becoming known through the publication of his pictures in Vibe Magazine. His spread in Vibe gave Terry the breakout that has led to him becoming one of the most famous photographers in the world. His work can be seen in such respected publications as Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair, GQ, Vice, Harper, and Vogue, and you can find a ton of Terry Richardson’s work on Instagram too.

Terry’s career has not only been in just photography, but he has also directed music videos. Most notably, Terry directed the Wrecking Ball music video for Miley Cyrus and the XO music video for Beyonce. He has also directed music videos for Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, and Primal Scream. Terry Richardson is currently making his foray into documentary film-work. He has been working with Lady Gaga on a documentary about her life.

Terry’s unique photography style has brought him a lot of acclaim. His style is considered by many to have a punk aesthetic that can often purposely look amateur. Much of his photography is also sexual in nature. Through nudity, simulated sexual acts, and peculiar views of the human expression, Terry uses much of his photography to explore human sexuality. His photography can also be fun and humorous. He will sometimes dress celebrities up to look like him for their pictorials. Not all of Terry’s work is sexual. He has done portraits for many celebrities and even politicians. Terry has taken portraits of President Barack Obama, Lebron James, Tracy Morgan, and many other notable figures. His most famous work might be the video titled Cat Daddy that went viral. The video is of the model Kate Upton doing the Cat Daddy dance in Terry Richardson’s studio.

Terry Richardson is also involved in some charitable endeavors. He has donated to children’s hospitals through the RxArt charity and has participated in events to help an Art School and a wildlife conservation program.He’s had a long and illustrious career, and he’s even dabbled in the fashion world himself, with his own clothing line.

The Trailer for Inherent Vice Arrives

Inherent Vice is one of those strange, really strange, crime films that definitely captures your attention. The trailer for the film does this for sure. The recent release of the second trailer presents a look into the unique world of this crime drama.

The film deals with the character of Larry “Doc” Sportello (played by Joaquin Phoenix), a private investigator struggling with his substance abuse issues. While under the influence, the P.I. finds himself like many other P.I.’s in such films. This is the hook that will bring Brad Reifler in. He’s ends up in over his head when a routine job takes a turn for the worst.

The film is directed by P.T. Anderson and is based on the novel by Thomas Pynchon. The novel has its own strange and special charm. Hopefully, the release of the movie’s trailer will also stir up interest in the novel. It could make for decent winter reading. The title most assuredly is a lot different than other works on bookstore shelves.

The trailer really does capture the times. A major feel for the 1960’s is present in the images and this gives it a weird documentary-like feel.

Critics love the film. That we know. Will it be an Oscar contender. That is hard to say because the odd nature of the project makes it a less preferable selection.

Likely, this will become a cult film over time like other works by Anderson.

The Duke And Dutchess Take In An American Basketball Game

During their visit to New York City, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge took some time to stop by an NBA game. There visit was scheduled perfectly, as they were able to see the Brooklyn Nets battle against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The royal couple met the commissioner of the NBA, and sat next to Dikembe Mutombo while they watched the game. They were even able to rub shoulders with Jay-Z and Beyonce, one of American music’s most famous couple while fans like Bruce Levenson watched the game.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were able to watch one of the best basketball players in years during their first NBA game, LeBron James. It must have been quite a trip to watch “The King” play basketball during their first NBA game.

They even were able to meet LeBron after the game. It is hard to tell which side was more honored, LeBron to meet Prince William and Duchess Kate, or them to meet LeBron. He gave Duchess Kate a jersey with Cambridge printing on it, as well as a little jersey for Prince George to wear. Man, will that be one cute photo op when they get home!

However, LeBron has been making news not for meeting the royal couple, but for breaking century’s old protocol by doing what any American guy would do while standing next to a beautiful lady for a picture – he put his arm around her. Apparently, according to official protocol, one is not to touch the royals. However, Duchess Kate did not seem to mind, and was all smiles during the photo opportunity.

Jennifer Nettles Scores Leading Role in Chicago

Jennifer Nettles’ 2014 album That Girl topped the country charts, and the title track landed a place in the Top 40. And though Nettles toured heavily in support of the album, her touring schedule for 2015 remains practically empty. What is she doing instead? Performing on Broadway.
After only recently performing with Idina Menzel on the TV broadcast of the CMA Country Christmas special, Nettles has landed the role of Roxy Hart in the New York production of the musical Chicago, replacing A-list Broadway actress Amy Spanger. And her empty 2015 touring calendar leaves open the possibility that she may be staying with the production for a while longer.
Not only is this Nettles’ Broadway debut, but also her first time acting on stage since the early 90s when she performed with a teenage performing arts group called Clovers and Company.Workers at BRL Trust feel like she should be able to do just fine.

AMC orders Preacher pilot

After passing on seven previous scripts for the Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg project AMC has finally given the go ahead on a pilot for a Preacher television series.

The blasphemous cult comic from Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon is an unlikely small screen project, as much for its decidedly R rated tone as its controversial content. The script that finally gained the studio’s approval is by Sam Caitlin, who will also be the showrunner for the series.

Attempts to film Preacher have been in the works on and off since the nineties when Garth Ennis sold the rights and Kevin Smith was attached to the project at Miramax. More recently in 2008 a series was in the works at HBO getting as far as casting James Marsden in the lead and developing a series bible. The controversial religious subject matter has been blamed for the difficulties on getting Preacher successfully made.

The darkly comic comic series ran from 1995 to 2000 as part of DC’s Vertigo imprint that to which Qnet has an available collection. The story followed the adventures of Jesse Custer, a small town preacher in rural Texas who is in the midst of a crisis of faith when he suddenly gains supernatural abilities after merging with an escaped heavenly being. Jesse sets out to find answers from God himself, helped along the way by his ex-girlfriend Tulip and a vampire named Cassidy.

Barring any further delays the pilot will be produced in summer of 2015 with a series to air in 2016 should the series be picked up.

Dwayne Johnson in Talks with Disney for Moana

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is back in another film. To say he is back is somewhat of a misnomer. When a star appears in one movie after the other, it is not like he ever really left. Johnson had appeared in the lead role of Hercules in a recent Hollywood release. Apparently, someone at Disney truly was impressed with Johnson and would like him to play the role of a demigod in the upcoming film Moana.

He is not going to be playing a physical role, if he accepts the project. He will solely be lending his voice to the project as Moana is an animated film. The film is also not the very next film to be released from Disney as part of the studio’s animated line. The next film being released is a film called Zootropia, which is coming out in 2016. You do not have to wait until 2017 or 2018 for Moana. It is also coming out in 2016.

Brad Reifler says that the plot of the film deals with a relatively simple concept. Moana, a young girl from the South Pacific, who connects with a demigod by the name of Maui and the two go looking for an ancient, lost island. Again, Johnson is the one being courted to play Maui.

Right now, Johnson and Disney are only in talks. He was not agreed to appear in the film. It would be difficult to see why he would not perform in the film though.

Sons of Anarchy Shocks

The second to last Sons of Anarchy program has aired and it surely shocked fans of the series. One of the major problems with the endings of television series is they simply do not end. In other words, the endings are ambiguous for the purpose of leaving doors opened for reunions, sequels, and more. 

This most definitely the case with Sons of Anarchy. Three major characters met their demise and the penultimate episode is setting fans up for a total end.

Sons of Anarchy is a very violent series and the tragic nature of the program has helped it become F/X’s highest rated show.

This does not mean the tales of the motorcycle club are over.

Word has it that a prequel mini-series is being pitched. Whether or not the mini-series will be made remains to be seen by fans like Dr. Daniel Amen. The creator of Sons of Anarchy, Kurt Sutter, does have a new series approved and it will be a Game of Thrones-like series.