Netflix’s Little Evil Will Be Totally Hilarious

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In the recent years, Netflix has made amply clear that it wants to try and experiment with anything and everything. Whether it’s comedy-dramas like Orange is the New Black, animated sitcoms like BoJack Horseman, or political dramas like House of Cards, Netflix is trying its hand at various genres to bring its subscribers what they love the most. It’s now trying its hand at horror-comedy and we think Netflix will nail it this time, as usual.

Netflix is certainly not new to the horror genre, (it already boasts of Stranger Things), but Little Evil will be unlike anything that Netflix has brought us so far. The center piece of malice in the movie will be a 6-year old. A cute, adorable, and lovely kid will be the source of all evil in the film, but make no mistake: this is not the typical bad-seed-kid type of movie. That theme has become so popular that it now enjoys an entire subgenre in the horror category.

This story is about a man, Gary (Adam Scott), who is recently married to the woman of his dreams, Samantha (Evangeline Lilly). His honeymoon comes to a screeching halt when he begins to see all the signs that his new stepson is actually the Antichrist. Making matters worse is the fact that the stepson in discussion is just 6 years old (666 for those who didn’t get the obvious reference).

The movie is being produced by Scott Stuber’s Bluegrass Films. Apart from Adam Scott and Evangeline Lilly, the movie cast includes Brad Williams, Tyler Labine, Marcus Terrell Smith, Clancy Brown, Donald Faison, and Chris D’Elia. As you can see, the team in front of the camera and behind it well known for their comedic skills. Stuber has previously produced hits like Ted and its sequel, Central Intelligence, and A Million Ways to Die in the West. Stuber and his production house have already established themselves in the comedy genre for the movie industry, so with Netflix in full throttle to deliver excellent entertainment, budget will not be a problem for Stuber. So, brace yourself for some serious convulsions as you go into fits of laughter when you tune in to Little Evil.

Coming to the movie cast, the lead role of Gary will be played by Adam Scott. Adam has appeared in numerous films and TV shows, but he is best known for his role in NBC’s Parks and Recreation as Ben Wyatt. Very recently, Scott has acted in the HBO limited series Big Little Lies and is expected to make an appearance on The Blind Brother. Audiences can expect some excellent comedy on account of his presence in the movie.

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Another well-known face in the team is Evangeline Lilly, an award winning actress who has even been Golden Globe nominated. Recently, she played the role of Tauriel in The Hobbit, and appeared as Hope Van Dyne in the Marvel’s hit movie Ant-Man. Some of the audience may also remember her as Kate Austin from ABC’s Lost series. The A-list actor’s presence in the cast shows that Netflix is leaving no stone unturned to ensure that the movie takes off well.

The filming of the movie has already kicked off this past month in Ohio, and the movie itself is scheduled to be hit Netflix some time in 2017.

The movie was not actually aimed at Netflix when Stuber began working on it since his production company has a first-look deal with Universal. Stuber first took the movie to Universal Pictures, but Universal rejected the movie.  Eli Craig had delivered Stuber a script that he simply couldn’t pass up, so Netflix entered the game. If history is any proof, then Netflix has already established itself as the ultimate “fate changer”. It has taken endless number of shows and movie projects that were rejected or discontinued by other streamers or TV channels and completely turned them into great hits. This has pretty much been Netflix’s specialty for quite a while. There is no doubt that Little Evil will proudly follow the tradition and leave our ribs aching from laughter.

As of now, Netflix has not announced a clear date of release for Little Evil, but Stuber says to expect it in 2017! If you can’t access Netflix to watch Little Evil, you can always sign up for a cable subscription to watch TV the old fashioned way.

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Movie Review: “Blair Witch”

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It is said that “the greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.” Alternatively, the greatest trick the best moviemakers pull off is convincing their audience that whatever is happening on the screen is real, but achieving this is easier said than done: even the most sought-after, elite directors find it hard to do. That’s why it was a feat of great prowess when independent filmmakers Eduardo Sánchez and Daniel Myrick did it in style back in 1999. “The Blair Witch Project” was a massive hit that nobody saw coming, and its success stoked an entire subgenre of found-footage movies that have taken over the Hollywood horror scene. Attempts to recreate the magic through its sequel/prequel “Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2” failed miserably in 2000, but now, a second sequel is here – “Blair Witch.” The new film answers questions that were left unanswered in the earlier movies, but at the same time, raises even more of them.

First of all, “Blair Witch” takes over directly where the first movie ended and does not acknowledge the existence of its prequel or of any of the events portrayed in the second movie.

“Blair Witch” follows the young James, brother of Heather, the original Blair Witch victim from the first movie. Since her disappearance in 1994, James has never believed that she is dead; he believes that she is alive somewhere in the woods and is waiting for him to find and rescue her. So, some years after her disappearance, he mounts a search and rescue mission. James is accompanied by Lisa, a filmmaking student, his close friends, Peter and Ashley, and a pair who claim to have footage that shows Heather alive in the woods. Unlike the original team, these people bring state-of-the-art film equipment along: they have everything from camera fitted drones to ear mounted cameras.

The members of the team soon get into squabbles and begin to disintegrate. They soon get lost in the woods, and start going around in circles. This is when they are attacked by a mysterious creature from the woods (all caught on camera).

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As a standalone movie, “Blair Witch” could have been accepted as a decent attempt at a horror movie, but as a sequel that should carry on the legacy of “The Blair Witch Project,” it does not live up to its standards. The movie is scary, including jump scares, sudden appearances in the frame, unexpected sounds, but it is still far from being considered a worthy sequel.

The actors are all professionals, whereas the original movie featured first-time actors. Despite this reason, the genuine dread and fear of the actors in the original movie was evident. Most of the time, those actors had no idea about the scare-fests that the directors had planned for them, so their fears and reactions were 100% genuine. On the other hand, even with professional actors, the latest sequel does not pull off the same level of convincing acting. In that sense, the sequel is just like any other generic horror movie that’s far from terrifying. If that wasn’t enough, the director failed to take advantage of the multitude of camera angles that he had at his disposal.

Perhaps the biggest factor that worked against the movie is the same thing its makers hoped would work in its favor. The movie appeared to reveal too much about the core of the horror franchise – Blair Witch. It appears that the movie finally shows a creature that the audience believes to be the real Blair Witch. With the appearance of this creature, the mystery surrounding the horror died away, making the horror franchise kind of naked, which sealed the sequel’s fate.

However, the movie’s writer, Simon Barrett, confirmed later that the creature is not Blair Witch. So far, the directors and writers of both films have misled the audience into believing the Blair Witch was Elly Kedward. Elly Kedward, an Irish woman, lived in Blair, now known as Burkittsville, and was accused of witchcraft. She was hung in the woods, with stones tied to her limbs: under the weight of the stones, her limbs stretched in a horrifying manner. The creature who appeared in the latest sequel appears to have similar injuries as Elly, but as Simon confirmed, Elly is not Blair Witch, but just a vehicle used by the real Blair Witch. These details could have been carefully revealed in the movie instead of announcing them afterwards.

All in all, Blair Witch is a huge improvement over the disaster that was “Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2,” but, it is not as terrifying or cinematically sound as the original movie, “The Blair Witch Project.” However, it is still a spooky tale worth a watch this Halloween! By subscribing to a Comcast cable plan, you can see when Blair Witch will air on a premium movie channel.

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What Cancelling Bloodline Means for Netflix

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Netflix has gone ahead and done something that it rarely does – cancel its own original programming. Bloodline season three will be the last run of the show. This is a surprising move from the streaming service, considering the fact that Bloodline was one of its high profile shows, and from the looks of it, it appeared that everything was going well for the show. Netflix ordered the season three production almost immediately after the second season ended. This is usually taken as a positive move for the show. But, it now looks like a last ditch effort from Netflix to keep enough buzz about Bloodline until it closes next season. What could be the reasons for such a drastic decision? Has Netflix categorized Bloodline as a failure? What does this mean for the rest of the original programming currently in Netflix’s offerings? Read on to find more.

Before we jump to conclusions about the fate of Netflix, it should be noted that the cancellation of Bloodline could be an isolated incident. Presently, everything is going great on Netflix’ front. Early this year, it launched worldwide across many countries. Its original programing is loved by the audience, and the streaming service is earning in billions every year.

So, there has to be something inherent to the Bloodline project that got the show cancelled. Usually, when the show gets cancelled, it is because the show is not making more money than what the producers invested in it. As long as the show is making profits, the producers do not care about the costs. That is, unless the cost exceeds the revenue. This happens for two reasons – sudden increase in costs, and loss of viewership. Any discussion about viewership for Netflix’s shows is like talking about what’s inside a black hole. Netflix never reveals its viewership statistics. So, you simply cannot know whether the viewership for Bloodline decreased, increased, or remained the same.

The other factor, the cost of production, deserves a closer look. Netflix pays Sony Pictures Television anywhere between $7 and $8.5 million per episode to produce Bloodline. For a 10 episode season, that amounts to about $70 to $85 million. That is a lot of money. So, it is safe to assume that Netflix does need a lot of viewership to keep Bloodline alive. Making matters worse for Netflix, Florida recently decided to end its tax incentives for entertainment projects that are shot in the state. Bloodline is shot in Islamorada in Florida Keys. This means a sudden jump in the costs of production for the show. Naturally, this disrupts the whole costs-revenue balance that is so carefully planned. Now, when you put that against the fact that the show never garnered as much buzz as Master of None or Stranger Things, it begins to become clearer as to why Bloodline was axed.

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Then there is the matter of accolades. Netflix has a strong reputation for its amazing original programming. None of the other streamers enjoy the same reputation at the top of the entertainment pyramid. Netflix’s original shows routinely bag Emmys and Golden Globes. Some of its shows, which are not so prestigious, at least carry with them the mass appeal, thanks to their pop-culture themes. Both types of shows generate enough buzz to keep the audience coming back for more. Bloodline never belonged to either of the categories wholly. It was a bit of both, and couldn’t find a home with either of them. It did not win enough awards of nominations, nor did it have a crazy fan following. It just wasn’t discussed as much as other high performing shows like House of Cards or Stranger Things.

Some people are hoping that the show might get picked up by another streamer, or a cable channel. After all, the show was enjoying a decent buzz on the social media. It can prove to be a crowd-puller for a low key cable channel. Yes, that does happen sometimes in the industry, but highly unlikely in this case. The main reason for this is the Netflix’s approach towards its original programming. When Netflix orders a contract to a studio to produce a show, it has a clause that prevents the studio from selling reruns of the show. To make up for this loss in revenue for the studio, Netflix not only covers the cost of production of the show, but also offers a premium of 30-60% on the costs to the studios. This way, the studios get an assured profit from the production, and Netflix keeps all its shows in house. There is no reason for Netflix to make an exception in case of Bloodline, which means that the show will remain buried after its third season.

Now, before you chalk up Bloodline as one of Netflix’s failures, consider a few more things. Bloodline isn’t the first show that Netflix has cancelled. Lilyhammer and Hemlock Grove were dropped by Netflix before. Yet, they were nowhere in the same league as Bloodline. Even then, the absence of Bloodline will not make a serious dent in Netflix’s offerings.

Moreover, Netflix did not end Bloodline abruptly. This is important because it means that Netflix didn’t simply chalk it up as a failure in its books. In fact, Netflix gave its audience enough time to cope with the termination of the show. In addition to this, the show is not being dropped mid-story, leaving the audience with a cliffhanger, or in suspense. Instead, Netflix will produce another season of the show, and will promptly end it with a fitting climax, without leaving any room for resurrections. This is good because Netflix can now use the money it freed up by killing Bloodline to produce a better show for its audience. If you don’t have a cable television plan, then streaming shows like Bloodline on Netflix is your best bet for entertainment.

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The Buzz Surrounding Spike Lee’s New Netflix Series

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Many of us who are old enough to remember the 1986 movie She’s Gotta Have It recall how fresh and novel it was for its time. The movie shattered stereotypes associated with the African-American populace in the US, and this unique portrayal of the blank community can be singlehandedly credited for starting a revolution that paved the way for more recognition and inclusion of black movie producers and actors in Hollywood. Now, the movie’s director, Spike Lee, is recreating the magic after 30 years for Netflix. However, this time, it will be a TV series with 10 episodes. Here’s everything that you want to know about this show.

Netflix = 1; Showtime = 0

The TV show, also named She’s Gotta Have It, was actually first conceptualized for Showtime; Lee began work on the project with the sole purpose of airing it on Showtime. For its part, Showtime had also shown a lot of interest in the series, and the show had been in development under Showtime for about 2 years. Then, Showtime abruptly dropped the project altogether, which is when Netflix swooped in and picked it up. Although there are so many channels with countless number of TV shows, it is actually hard to find something that is truly original. She’s Gotta Have It is a much-needed, completely new show. Why Showtime cancelled it is beyond logic! Well, with Lee standing behind the project that brought him his biggest success, Netflix can rest assured that it has landed a probable success.

This is Not Lee’s First Project with a Streaming Service

Spike Lee began his career as an independent movie producer, but later, he lasted mega-success in the mainstream movie industry with the likes of Malcolm X and Inside Man. Very recently, Amazon Studios signed him up to create a film called Chi-Raq; the movie was only released in select theaters, but more prominently on Amazon Instant Video. Now, after his stint with Amazon, Lee appears to be all set to work with Netflix on this new project.

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The Original Movie was Shot on a Shoestring Budget

When Spike Lee tried to break into the film scene in 1986, he was cash strapped and did not have the resources to back a big budget movie. He begged, borrowed, and did everything he could to arrange the money for She’s Gotta Have It: In the end, the entire movie was shot on a budget of just $175,000 and in only 12 days. But once the movie hit theaters, it created a smash like nothing Lee had imagined. The movie ended up grossing more than $7 million at the box office, which is 15 times more than budget of the movie. Now compare this to the successful big budget Hollywood movies, which easily cost more than a $100 million to make, and end up making only about twice that much.

She’s Gotta Have It is an Avant Garde Piece

The original movie was an Avant Garde experiment in 1986. 30 years later, the concept continues to be so. The show will revolve around Nola Darling, a Brooklynite; the artist juggles her time between her job, friends, and three lovers. Naturally, Nola’s romantic side may not be something that everybody will like. Nevertheless, her fierce independence is sure to hit a chord among women audiences.

Lee is an Award-Winning Moviemaker, and his Magic Will Be Evident in the Show

Spike Lee has been nominated for Academy Awards twice in his career; He earned his first nomination for writing Do the Right Thing, and his second nomination was for his documentary 4 Little Girls. Additionally, When the Levees Broke, his television documentary about post-Katrina New Orleans, won him 2 Emmys. Clearly, Lee is a versatile moviemaker, who has displayed his skills in the field through different forms of entertainment.

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The Show Will Last Only 10 Episodes

Neither Netflix nor Lee has released enough details regarding the show, but the only thing that is for sure is that the story will be similar to the movie, and that it will be updated to reflect the contemporary period. Even though the show will air on Netflix, you can get an internet and cable bundle for even less of the price. You’ll be able to stream the show with internet! That being said, there are some things that appear to be crystal clear: for instance, Netflix has placed an order for a 10-episode series. Now, Netflix, Lee, and even the audience who have seen the original know exactly where the show is going; right from the beginning, the show will be produced with the end in mind. Thus, it appears that the show will not be carried over to a second season. In all probability, it will be a single season show with 10 episodes of 30 minutes each. Each of these half-hour episodes will be directed by Lee himself.

The Idea for the Show Came from an Independent Woman in Lee’s Own Life

Lee made his debut movie exactly 30 years ago: since then, it has grown into a cult status. However, it was Tonya Lewis Lee who advised him to make a TV show remake of the movie. Spike Lee is married to Tonya, who is a successful producer in her own right, and he recalls that it was Tonya, who first mooted the idea of remaking his movie into an episodic TV show.