Welcome to Development Hell, the fiery pit into which we fling recent developments in casting, distribution, and everything else that’s new and mildly interesting in the Boschian phantasmagoria of the entertainment industry.
LeBron James is going to the Lakers, which only really matters to us here at The A.V. Club in the sense that there may be a scene in the long-discussed Space Jam sequel in which James wears a Lakers jersey instead of a Cavaliers jersey. As long as he’s dunking on Monstars and crackin’ wise with Bugs, we don’t care which sports team he’s doing sports with—unless the Lakers are the Monstars of the NBA? Anyway, while we wait for an energizing sip of LeBron’s Secret Stuff, here’s some other pop culture news:
- HBO has given a series order to Los Espookys, Fred Armisen’s Spanish-language comedy series formerly known as Mexico City: Only Good Things Happen. The show is about a group of friends in a “dreamy version” of Mexico who are obsessed with horror movies. Though it’s not fair to judge a show by its name, it is worth pointing out that Los Espookys is a very good title while Mexico City: Only Good Things Happen is a very bad title. [via Variety]
- MoviePass always seems to be on the verge of completely imploding, but parent company Helios And Matheson Analytics is looking to delay that apparent inevitability by raising up to $1.2 billion from investors over the next three years. The company did recently start selling MoviePass merch, though, so maybe if they sell a few million collared shirts they can get back on track. [via Variety]
- Scarlett Johansson is reuniting with her Ghost In The Shell director Rupert Sanders for Rub & Tug, a movie that sounds about as far removed from a cyberpunk anime adaptation as you can get. It’s a “fact-based” story about Dante “Tex” Gill, a transmasculine Pittsburgh crime boss who built an empire on—ahem—massage parlors and a “fiery romance” with his girlfriend Cynthia. [via Deadline]
- Matt Damon is in talks to star in The King Of Oil, a movie about oil magnate Marc Rich that might be directed by John Krasinski. Rich became a rich and powerful businessman in the ‘80s by making illegal deals with foreign governments and was later indicted on dozens of criminal charges before being pardoned by Bill Clinton on his last day in office. [via Deadline]
- I, Tonya was a pretty big hit, and independent distributor is leaning into the success of that film by picking up the rights to Sharp Edges, a 1986 documentary about Tonya Harding. The film features interviews with the real Harding and her real mother, who was played by Allison Janney in the film. It’ll be released digitally on July 17 following a theatrical run in L.A. and New York this week. [via The Hollywood Reporter]
- Andy Dick has been charged with sexual battery following an incident in April in which he allegedly “touched and made inappropriate comments” about a woman who walked past him on the sidewalk. Dick was fired from two movies last year for harassment. [via Variety]
- Musicals are getting a bit of a resurgence thanks to La La Land, and now Lucas Hedges and Sterling K. Brown are in talks to star in Trey Edward Shults’ “dramatic musical” Waves. The movie apparently puts a “fresh spin” on the musical genre and will be “almost entirely synchronized to music,” with the original score coming from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross—so this sounds surprisingly badass. [via Variety]
- All of the grown-up Losers for the It sequel have been cast, and now the movie’s official Twitter account has shared the first look at the gang having a bit of an impromptu last supper. (For the record, it’s Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, Isaiah Mustafa, Jay Ryan, James Ransome, Bill Hader, and Andy Bean.)
CORRECTION, 7/3: An earlier version of this post used a feminine name and pronoun to describe Dante “Tex” Gill. It has since been changed to reflect his transmasculine identity. We regret the error.