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Idris Elba still hasn’t seen ‘Endgame’, but has his eyes on playing the all-seeing Heimdall for Marvel again

ABC(NEW YORK) — (SPOILER ALERT) Avengers: Endgame is the highest-grossing movie of all time, but if you run into Marvel movie star Idris Elba, please don’t tell him how it ends.

“I have it seen it, so no spoilers!” the Hobbs & Shaw star admitted to ABC Radio.

Elba, who played the all-seeing Norse god Heimdall in the three Thor movies — as well as Avengers: Age of Ultron and Avengers: Infinity War — had no real excuse. “I know, I know. I have no life,” he laughed, shaking his head.

Anyone who HAS seen Endgame knows that an argument could be made that Heimdall’s heroic sacrifice in the opening moments of Infinity War makes him the real savior of mankind.

Hear us out: just before Thanos executes an injured Heimdall, the Asguardian uses his dark magic to transport Hulk to earth.

No Hulk, no Smart Hulk. No Smart Hulk, no time travel, which sets Thanos’ downfall in motion.

Granted, Tony Stark perfects the tech, but Hulk did the, pardon pun, heavy lifting.

Idris doesn’t know all that, however.

He does know is that he’d love to play Heimdall again, whether it be in an origin story, or as part of Disney+’s upcoming Loki series. “Of course!” He enthuses. “Listen, Heimdall is essentially part of the god family. So you know, he essentially could be alive. I’m just saying! I’m just putting it out there!

“The Heimdall character goes way back into, you know, the Thor mythology…And I’m sure there will be an interesting way to bring that alive. Of course I would. Yes.”

Fast and the Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw is now in theaters.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

‘The Kitchen,’ ‘Dora and the Lost City of Gold’ lead a busy box office weekend

(L-R) Elisabeth Moss, Melissa McCarthy and Tiffany Haddish in “The Kitchen”; Alison Cohen Rosa/Warner Bros. Pictures(NEW YORK) — Opening nationwide on Friday:

* The Kitchen — This live-action adaptation of the DC comics miniseries of the same name stars Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish and Elisabeth Moss as the wives of Irish mobsters in New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood in the 1970s, who take over their husbands’ rackets after they land in prison. Domhnall Gleeson, 13 Reasons Why’s Brian d’Arcy James, The Americans’ Margo Martindale, Common and The Leftovers’ Bill Camp also star. Rated R.

* Dora and the Lost City of Gold — This live-action adaptation of the popular Nickelodeon cartoon stars Isabela Moner as the titular character who, after spending most of her life exploring the jungle with her parents, played by Eva Longoria and Michael Peña, now must navigate high school.  She ends up leading her CGI-animated pal Boots the monkey, voiced by Danny Trejo, her cousin Diego, played by Jeff Wahlberg, and a rag-tag group of teens on an adventure to save her parents and solve the mystery behind a lost city of gold. Benicio del Toro provides the voice for Dora and Boots’ sneaky nemesis, Swiper the Fox. Rated PG.

* The Art of Racing in the Rain — This dramedy, based on Garth Stein’s 2008 novel of the same, features Kevin Costner as the voice of Enzo, a dog owned by Denny and Eve Swift, played respectively by Milo Ventimiglia and Amanda Seyfried, who reflects on his relationship with his human family and being around in times of need. Rated PG.

* Brian Banks — This inspirational film, based on a true story, stars Straight Outta Compton and Hidden Figures‘ actor Aldis Hodge as the titular character, a high school football player whose career was sidelined in 2002 after he was falsely accused of committing rape. Banks spent close to six years in prison and five more on parole before his conviction was overturned in 2012. Also starring Greg Kinnear and Morgan Freeman, he latter in an uncredited role. Rated PG-13.

* Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark — Guillermo del Toro co-produced this horror film based on Alvin Schwartz’s children’s book series of the same name about a young girl named Sarah, whose book of scary stories written about her tortured life become all too real for a group of teenagers who discover them. Zoe Colletti, Michael Garza, Gabriel Rush, Austin Abrams, Dean Norris, Gil Bellows and Lorraine Toussaint star. Rated PG-13.

Opening in limited release on Friday:

* After the Wedding — This remake of the 2006 Danish drama of the same name stars Michelle Williams as Isabel, a co-founder of an orphanage in Calcutta, India who travels to New York to meet potential benefactor, Theresa, played by Julianne Moore. When Isabel is unexpectedly invited to the wedding of Theresa’s daughter, portrayed by Abby Quinn, she’s forced to confront her past, including a man who turns out to be Theresa’s husband, played by Billy Crudup. Rated PG-13.

* The Peanut Butter Falcon — Shia LaBeouf and Dakota Johnson star in this dramedy about a young boy with Down syndrome, played by newcomer Zack Gottsagen, who runs away to fulfill his dream of becoming a professional wrestler. Also starring Bruce Dern, Deadwood‘s John Hawkes and Thomas Haden Church. Rated PG-13.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Stars of ‘The Brady Bunch’ to walk the shag carpet for HGTV’s ‘A Very Brady Renovation’ premiere

HGTV(LOS ANGELES) — Here’s the story, of a lovely family, whose famous TV home just got rebuilt.

That story — the 2018 renovation of the world-famous North Hollywood home known as the “Brady Bunch house” — is the centerpiece of HGTV’s new series A Very Brady Renovation…and the Brady family will soon gather to celebrate.

The six Brady Bunch siblings — Barry Williams, who played Greg; Maureen “Marcia” McCormick; Christopher “Peter” Knight; Eve “Jan” Plumb, Mike “Bobby” Lookinland, and Susan “Cindy” Olsen — will walk the red shag carpet at the Garland Hotel in Los Angeles for the show’s September 5th “shag carpet” — instead of red carpet — premiere.

With them will be HGTV renovation stars like Mina Starsiak Hawk and Karen E. Laine from Good Bones, Jasmine Roth from Hidden Potential, and other celebrities yet to be announced.

As for what was done to the house, remember that only exterior shots were used on The Brady Bunch. The new series documents the top-to-bottom restoration of the home, making it so its interior and exterior perfectly matched the house you see in the TV show. 

While the actual set was only one level, with the “upstairs bedrooms” next to each other on the same floor as the living room, the renovation experts on the HGTV show made it look like the two-level home we all remember — and replicated the classic show’s interiors right down to the smallest bits of Brady bric-a-brac.

No word on whether or not the famous football that broke Marcia’s nose will be one of the items recreated on the set.

HGTV’s A Very Brady Renovation debuts September 9.              

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

‘This Is Us’ star Milo Ventimiglia on winning Emmys, working with animals, and ‘Racing In The Rain’

© 2019 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. All rights reserved. (NEW YORK) — Based on the best-selling novel by Garth Stein, the film The Art of Racing in the Rain stars This Is Us patriarch Milo Ventimiglia, Amanda Seyfried and an adorable golden retriever named Enzo.

The film has Ventimiglia playing Denny, an aspiring Formula One driver, whose wise, four-legged best friend has his thoughts voiced by Oscar-winner Kevin Costner.

Speaking about hearing Costner’s voice describing Enzo’s thoughts, Milo says, “I didn’t even hear the narration when I was filming it…[But] when I heard it with Kevin’s voice, and it was all put together, I mean…it explodes.”

W.C. Fields said “never work with children or animals,” but Milo had to do both in the film. He says acting opposite Enzo was a bit frustrating, because it’s not like the dog can act back.

“It’s technical,” the actor tells ABC Radio, laughing, “I mean, I don’t get a treat at the end of every take. Nobody’s feeding me like little chicken biscuits! Nobody’s doing that!”

“I’m one of those actors, that…I need scene partners. I need something that I can draw and pull from,” he notes. “Even if a human actor is just reading their lines, but they don’t really believe it, they’re not into the scene…then it makes it that much more difficult for me.”

As for his day job, NBC’s This Is Us has earned Ventimiglia three Emmy nominations but to date, no wins. Is it important for him to reverse that trend at the upcoming Emmy Awards?

“No.” he tells us. “To be recognized by your peers…I’m grateful…If I come home with a trophy? Cool. If I don’t? Cool. I’m still showing up to work the next day… and busting my a**.” 

The Art of Racing in the Rain opens Friday.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Date set for Cuba Gooding Jr. sexual misconduct trial

iStock/Pattanaphong Khuankaew(NEW YORK) — Cuba Gooding Jr.’s sexual misconduct trial will begin September 3.

A New York City judge announced the date Thursday. The Boyz n the Hood star had sought to dismiss the forcible touching case, arguing that a video of his encounter with the woman whose accusations form the substance of the charges shows he did not grab her breast.  

The judge declined to dismiss the case, writing in his opinion, “The conflicting factual allegations between the criminal court information and the defendant’s motion should be resolved at trial.”

Gooding pleaded not guilty to one misdemeanor count each of forcible touching and sexual abuse in the third degree.  The charges stem from the 51-year-old actor’s alleged groping of a woman’s breast inside Manhattan’s Magic Hour Rooftop Bar on June 9.  Gooding has denied the claim.

The complaint itself asserts Gooding “forcibly touched the sexual and other intimate parts of another person for the purpose of degrading and abusing such person, and for the purpose of gratifying the defendant’s sexual desire; the defendant subjected another person to sexual contact without the latter’s consent.”  

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

‘Game of Thrones’ creators ink reported $200 million overall deal with Netflix

Netflix(LOS ANGELES) — Game of Thrones creators David Benioff and Dan Weiss have left HBO, their home for more than 10 years, and are headed to Netflix.

The duo has reportedly signed a $200 million multi-year overall film and TV deal with with the streamer, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter.

“We’ve had a beautiful run with HBO for more than a decade and we’re grateful to everyone there for always making us feel at home,” said Benioff and Weiss in part, in a joint statement obtained by THR.  “Netflix has built something astounding and unprecedented, and we’re honored they invited us to join them.”

“We are thrilled to welcome master storytellers David Benioff and Dan Weiss to Netflix,” said Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos in the statement. “They are a creative force and have delighted audiences worldwide with their epic storytelling. We can’t wait to see what their imaginations will bring to our members.”

Amazon seemed to have the inside track in snatching up the duo until July, when Netflix came up with a competitive offer. Disney, with whom Benioff and Weiss are currently working on a Star Wars trilogy for the studio’s Lucasfilm division, were also in the hunt.

The pair will reportedly be credited as executive producers on any and all Game of Thrones prequel series, while declining to have any hands-on involvement.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Danny Trejo rescues special needs child from overturned car after L.A. car accident

Disney Channel/Image Group LA(LOS ANGELES) —  While he spent his career playing tough guys on the big and small screen, Machete series star Danny Trejo showed his tender side Wednesday, when he crawled into a flipped-over car, and helped rescue a special needs child who was trapped inside. 

KABC-TV reports that Trejo, 75, happened to be in the area when two cars collided in Los Angeles Wednesday afternoon, after one car ran a red light and smashed into the one the child’s grandmother was driving, which rolled over from the impact.

Trejo crawled into the overturned wreckage from one side, but couldn’t unfasten the kid’s car set, which the actor said undoubtedly saved the boy’s life. Another good Samaritan crawled in from the other side and unlocked the buckles, allowing Trejo to pull the child to safety.

Meanwhile, firefighters had to use equipment to free the boy’s grandmother.

Trejo, who works with special needs children, said he kept the child distracted while the rescuers did their work. “I kept facing him away from the accident,” the actor and entrepreneur noted.

“He was panicked,” Trejo said, explaining how he got the boy out of the wreckage. “I said, ‘OK we have to use our superpowers.’ So he screamed ‘superpowers’ and we started yelling ‘superpowers.’ I said, ‘Do this, with the muscles.’ He said ‘muscles.'”

Neither occupants were seriously hurt.

Trejo summed up his actions to the ABC News affiliate, “Everything good that has happened to me has happened as a direct result of helping someone else. Everything. It’s how I live my life.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Here’s how ‘Empire’ will address Jussie Smollett’s absence in the final season

Chuck Hodes/Fox Broadcasting Co.(NEW YORK) — We now know how Empire will deal with the departure of Jussie Smollett’s character, Jamal, from the series, following accusations the actor staged a hate crime against himself back in January.

“He’s on his honeymoon! [Show co-creator] Lee [Daniels] has spoken a lot about this situation and this story will reflect it,” Charlie Collier, CEO of Fox Entertainment, said Wednesday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour, mirroring Daniels’ comments that Smollett won’t be returning. 

“You’ll see pictures of him in the background. He’s on his honeymoon in the storyline. Lee and the team have talked a lot about what they’re going to do, and there are some surprises at the beginning of this season that you’re going to love. And I really think Empire is going to go out just on a high.”

Daniels announced back in June that Smollett would not return for the show’s sixth and final season, premiering September 24.

Smollett was indicted on 16 counts of disorderly conduct for filing a false police report, though all charges were eventually dropped. That decision is currently being reviewed by a special prosecutor, including the actions of Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx, whose office dropped the charges.

21st Century Fox, which produces Empire, is now a part of Disney, ABC’s parent company.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Welcome to Zamunda: Wesley Snipes, Leslie Jones board the ‘Coming to America’ sequel

TM & COPYRIGHT © 1988 BY PARAMOUNT PICTURES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.(NEW YORK) — Wesley Snipes and Leslie Jones are officially headed to Zamunda.

The Hollywood Reporter has learned that Snipes and the SNL star have been added to the cast of Coming 2 America, the sequel to the classic 1988 comedy. They join original stars Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall, who have already been confirmed for the sequel. 

The original 1988 film Coming to America starred Murphy as Akeem Joffer, crown prince of the fictional African nation of Zamunda. In an effort to find a wife, Akeem, along with his trusty assistant Semmi, played by Hall, decide to travel to Queens, NY.

In the sequel, Akeem learns about a long-lost son and must return to America to meet the “unlikely heir to the throne of Zamunda.” 

Snipes will play a new character, General Izzi, a man who rules a neighboring nation.  Jones’ role is being kept secret. The Hollywood Reporter says If Beale Street Could Talk star Kiki Layne has also joined the cast, as Akeem’s daughter.

In addition to Murphy and Hall, most of the original film’s cast, including Shari Headley and James Earl Jones, is expected to return. However, as of now, only Murphy, Hall, Snipes and Jermaine Fowler have officially signed on.

As previously noted, black-ish creator Kenya Barris is rewriting a script from original Coming to America writers Barry Blaustein and David Sheffield.

Hustle & Flow director Craig Brewer has signed on to direct the project, which Murphy’s also producing. The two recently worked together on the Netflix comedy Dolemite Is My Name, which follows the story of real-life comedian Rudy Ray Moore.

Coming 2 America is set to hit theaters August 7, 2020.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Ann Curry helps solve medical mysteries in real time on ‘Chasing the Cure’

Warner Media(NEW YORK) — Ann Curry doesn’t want anyone to suffer in silence. The Emmy award-winning journalist hosts and produces an innovative new show called Chasing the Cure, designed to help solve medical mysteries in real time.

The show, airing live tonight on TNT and TBS, will follow a series of patients searching for answers to their mysterious ailments, including a woman who’s had a severe headache every day for nine years and a teen girl who woke up one day deaf in one ear.

Curry explains the benefits to the show’s unique crowd-sourcing capabilities.

“We are each other’s best resource and when we expand how many people know about our suffering, our challenges, we have a better chance of rising from them, we have a better chance of easing our suffering and becoming well again,” Curry tells ABC Radio.

She adds that by airing live, producers are able to get immediate advice from every doctor or medical professional watching, as well as anyone who’s had a similar symptom or who knows someone that has. Viewers can call in, email or use social media to connect — even if it’s just to share some kind words.

“You fall in love with these patients, you start to cheer for them and you want them to be well,” Curry says. “And even encouragement online, even if you know nothing, sending encouragement, I’ve seen it already in our interactions with these patients — that it matters.  It matters that they’re seen, it matters that they’re heard, it matters that they’re not suffering alone.”

Chasing the Cure airs live tonight at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT on TNT, TBS and on ChasingtheCureLive.com.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.