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Marvel’s Black Panther is definitely the number one movie in the country and hopefully the world if it continues on this historic track. Although the film is enjoyed and critically praised by people everywhere, some members of the LGBT community seem a bit ticked off at the Black Panther’s lack of queer characters.

black panther movie poster

Apparently in the comics, two of Black Panther’s Dora Milaje  (female personal body guards and potential wives from each tribe of Wakanda), Aneka and Ayo, are in a lesbian relationship. Last year some fans were thrilled at the possibility of the Marvel showing its first openly gay couple, but when those same fans attended the Black Panther screening, they were outraged that no mention or hint at any same-sex love existed between any members of the Dora Milaje.

via Pink News

ayo and aneka dora milaje black panther comics

Ayo and Aneka in “Black Panther” comics

Black Panther’s screenwriter has opened up about the lesbian romance which was cut from the film.

When the film was announced, fans were excited by the prospect of Okoye and Ayo,two of the title character’s bodyguards, getting together as Ayo and fellow female warrior Aneka do in the comics.

And these hopes were encouraged by reports that an early screening of the film featured Walking Dead star Danai Gurira’s Okoye staring at Ayo flirtatiously as the two danced.

The enthusiasm provoked by this turned to frustration and claims of LGBT erasureafter Marvel quickly denied the conclusions drawn by those who watched the scene.

A Marvel spokesperson reached out to clearly state that “the nature of the relationship between Danai Gurira’s Okoye and Florence Kasumba’s Ayo in Black Panther is not a romantic one.”

This sparked a movement around the hashtag #LetAyoHaveAGirlfriend, similar to the #GiveCaptainAmericaABoyfriend campaign last May prompted by the release of Captain America: Civil War.

Unfortunately, it was unsuccessful.

In fact, in the final version of the film, Okoye is depicted as straight and in a relationship with W’Kabi, played by Daniel Kaluuya.

Black Panther co-writer Joe Robert Cole, who has been nominated for an Emmy for his work on American Crime Story, talked to ScreenCrush about what fans have called lesbian erasure.

We are  definitely down for the LGBT community, but we do not think this should take away from the film overall. There will be other opportunities for LGBT characters to shine in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. What are your thoughts? Leave them in the comments section below!

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RZA’s “Cut Throat City” Opens in Theaters Nationwide July 17, 2020!

Texas-based distributor Well Go USA and Patriot Pictures announced today that they have set a July 17, 2020 theatrical release date for RZA’s anticipated crime thriller Cut Throat City. 

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cut throat city

Texas-based distributor Well Go USA and Patriot Pictures announced today that they have set a July 17, 2020 theatrical release date for RZA’s anticipated crime thriller Cut Throat City. 

Originally slated to make its world premiere as an official selection at SXSW 2020, the feature will be one of the first films to open wide theatrically as theaters begin to reopen nationwide. Well Go USA plans to release the film on 300 screens across the U.S. Directed by RZA and written by P.G. Cuschieri, Cut Throat City stars Demetrius Shipp Jr., Denzel Whitaker, Isaiah Washington, Kat Graham, Keean Johnson, Shameik Moore, and Tip T.I. Harris, with Eiza González, Ethan Hawke, Terrence Howard, and Wesley Snipes.

cut throat city

Cut Throat City is the story of four boyhood friends in New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward who return after Hurricane Katrina to find their homes decimated, with no jobs and no help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Out of options, they reluctantly turn to a local gangster, who offers them one shot at turning their situations around – by pulling off a dangerous heist in the heart of the city. When the job goes bad, the friends find themselves on the run, hunted by two relentless detectives and a neighborhood warlord who thinks they stole the heist money.

“What happens in the black community when men are dreaming of getting out, whether they’re using their music, their artistic expression, or academics, and yet, based on the system and based on natural disasters, those dreams and those aspirations turn into desperation? Well this takes place in Cut Throat City. I’m proud to see this film come to fruition and to tell a story about black men living in a poor community trying to figure it out,” said RZA.

cut throat city

“Coming up on the 15th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, it’s more important than ever to amplify and celebrate black voices. We are proud to be working with RZA on this powerful film,” said Doris Pfardrescher, CEO of Well Go USA.

“RZA’s Zen and martial arts of the mind philosophy is inspiring. This story has attracted a cast that will show our audiences the aftermath of Katrina and its effects on the community of the lower ninth in New Orleans. We are proud to share the voices of the community and bring light to the problems they are still dealing with, even 15 years later,” said Michael Mendelsohn of Patriot Pictures.

Well Go USA and Patriot Pictures will be donating a portion of the film’s proceeds to lowernine.org, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the long-term recovery of New Orleans’ historic Lower Ninth Ward.

Cut Throat City is produced by Michael Mendelsohn, Sean Lydiard, Elliott Michael Smith, Will Clevinger and Kyle Tekiela. The film is financed by Michael Mendelsohn’s Union Patriot Capital Management II, and produced by Patriot Pictures and Rumble Riot. XYZ Films serves as executive producers and worldwide sales.

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Batman Returns! Michael Keaton Set to Reprise Iconic Role in New “Flash” Movie!

Some actors are associated with certain iconic roles no matter how long ago they were (nearly thirty years to be exact). This is definitely the case with Michael Keaton, who portrayed Bruce Wayne/Batman in “Batman” (1989) and “Batman Returns” (1992). His association with these two films is highly regarded for bringing the portrayal of Batman back to his original darker, gritty roots.

Now, Michael Keaton has been tapped once again to don the cap and cowl of Batman, reprising his role in the upcoming “Flash” standalone film.

Here, Keaton will take on the role of a much more dangerous Batman–a “Flashpoint Batman”–born from an alternate timeline  (dubbed “The Flashpoint” in the comics) where The Flash alters his past and never becomes a superhero. Consequently the world at large is darker, more dangerous, and embroiled in war.

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michael keaton flashpoint batman

Some actors are associated with certain iconic roles no matter how long ago they were (nearly thirty years to be exact). This is definitely the case with Michael Keaton, who portrayed Bruce Wayne/Batman in “Batman” (1989) and “Batman Returns” (1992). His association with these two films is highly regarded for bringing the portrayal of Batman back to his original darker, gritty roots.

Now, Michael Keaton has been tapped once again to don the cap and cowl of Batman, reprising his role in the upcoming “Flash” standalone film.

Here, Keaton will take on the role of a much more dangerous Batman–a “Flashpoint Batman”–born from an alternate timeline  (dubbed “The Flashpoint” in the comics) where The Flash alters his past and never becomes a superhero. Consequently the world at large is darker, more dangerous, and embroiled in war.

michael keaton flashpoint batman

Fanart of Michael Keaton as “Flashpoint” Batman

Batman in this world is Thomas Wayne, Bruce Wayne’s father, who witnesses his son being killed in front of him during a mugging gone awry. Thomas becomes Batman–albeit a drunk who is far more violent and willing to kill his enemies. Just as surprising is that his wife and Bruce’s mother, Martha Wayne, is driven insane and becomes this world’s Joker!

michael keaton flashpoint batman

The plot of this upcoming Flash film will seemingly expand The DC Extended Universe (DCEU) and introduce audiences to a multiverse. This is not the first time DC Comics have played with the concept of a multiverse. As you may recall, in December of last year and January of this year they aired the major crossover television event, “Crisis on Infinite Earths,” on The CW which declared, outside the Arrowverse, every live action DC Comics based, live action series or movie was a universe to itself connecting past and present series like Arrow, Supergirl, The Flash, Black Lightning, Stargirl, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Lucifer, Birds of Prey, The Titans, Doom Patrol, Swamp Thing, Batman (the campy sixties series), and many more!

michael keaton flashpoint batman

We are excited for Michael Keaton to be Flashpoint Batman. It is very fitting and only coming on the heels of the character’s increasing prominence in the comics where surprisingly he has become not only an enemy of his son, but The Batman Family at large.

We will keep you posted as more about this story develops. Welcome back Michael!

 

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“Zero To Hero!” Disney Greenlights “Hercules” Live Action Remake!

Disney is ready to bless the masses with an all-new, live action remake of another one its classics, “Hercules!”

The Russo Brothers, the masterminds behind Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame and other Marvel movies, are set to bring the legendary demigod to life. As you recall, the film centers on Hercules, stolen from Mount Olympus and nearly sapped of his divinity by his wicked uncle, Hades. Hercules must be trained by the satyr, Philoctetes, to become a hero and finally came his place among the Greek gods.

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disney hercules live action

Disney is ready to bless the masses with an all-new, live action remake of another one its classics, “Hercules!”

The Russo Brothers, the masterminds behind Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame and other Marvel movies, are set to bring the legendary demigod to life. As you recall, the film centers on Hercules, stolen from Mount Olympus and nearly sapped of his divinity by his wicked uncle, Hades. Hercules must be trained by the satyr, Philoctetes, to become a hero and finally came his place among the Greek gods.

via The Hollywood Reporter

disney hercules live action

Hercules and Philoctetes

Joe and Anthony Russo, the filmmakers behind the Avengers: Endgame and Infinity War, are set to produce via their AGBO banner.

The 1997 pic was a musical fantasy retelling of the Greek legend that featured plenty of the trademark comedic banter of that era’s Disney animated titles. Tate Donovan voiced the demigod looking to reclaim his heroic stature, while James Woods played Hades, the god plotting to overthrow Olympus.

The animated film, which underwent considerable retooling over its many years in development, had 18 credited writers who worked on the story and screenplay. Ron Clements and Jon Musker directed.

The new Hercules is in early development, and this being a Disney title, rumors have already swirled about other producers and even filmmakers. The Russos are the only producers on the project and will not direct, according to insiders.

There have also been casting rumors in recent weeks, partially spurred on by Ariana Grande’s performance of the movie’s “I Won’t Say I’m in Love” during The Disney Family Singalong, which engendered a petition on Change.org for her to play Megara, the female lead. Idris Elba and Ryan Gosling’s names have also been floated by enthusiasts. But in reality, the project is far from the casting stage.

It is unclear what the new take on Hercules will be or if it will even keep the musical elements. Disney has taken varying approaches to its live-action remakes. Last year’s The Lion King, for example, hewed quite closely to the 1994 original, while Mulan, set for release July 24, is a looser interpretation of its 1998 source material.

disney hercules live action

Hercules and Megara

We are really hoping Ariana Grande is cast as Megara, but as for Hercules we are personally rooting for Rome Flynn, KJ Appa, or even Channing Tatum in the role.

disney hercules live action

The Muses

Just as important, however, are which divas will be cast as The Muses, the five Greed goddesses of art and music, who brought a lot of soul to the original animated film. For them, we are thinking Jennifer Hudson, Lizzo, Jazmine Sullivan, Amber Riley, and Beyonce.

 

 

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