New Zealand, Sept 19 (AP/UNB) — Amazon announced Wednesday it will film its upcoming television series "The Lord of the Rings" in New Zealand, marking a return of the orcs, elves and hobbits to the country they became synonymous with over the course of six movies directed by Peter Jackson.
Amazon Studios said it had found a great location with world-class sets and skilled staff. It said pre-production had already started and production on the series would begin in the city of Auckland over the coming months.
"As we searched for the location in which we could bring to life the primordial beauty of the Second Age of Middle-earth, we knew we needed to find somewhere majestic, with pristine coasts, forests, and mountains," showrunners and executive producers J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay wrote in a statement.
But Amazon wouldn't reveal the extent of its plans for the series. It declined to say how much it plans to spend, how many seasons the show will run, or when it will debut.
Some have speculated Amazon could spend more than $1 billion on the series as it looks to take on other streaming services like Netflix with its Prime Video service.
New Zealand's Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford welcomed the news, saying the series would give a boost to the screen industry and create hundreds of new jobs.
"It's a hugely significant piece of popular culture," Twyford said. "And it now has a special place in New Zealanders hearts as well. We are part of Middle-earth."
The series will be eligible for a 20% screen grant rebate that will be funded by taxpayers. The conservative lobby group Taxpayers' Union said the rebate meant every New Zealand household could end up paying more than $100.
"Who would seriously name Amazon as the most deserving recipient of our hard-earned tax dollars?" the group wrote in a release.
But Twyford said it will be money well spent.
"This is not a charity issue," he said. "This is about bringing jobs, investment, and economic development to New Zealand."
The series will be based on the fantasy novels by J.R.R. Tolkien. Amazon said it would explore new story lines that precede "The Fellowship of the Ring."
The show won't be connected with the New Line Cinema movies, although Jackson has previously said he'd be interested in helping out. "The Lord of the Rings" movie trilogy and "The Hobbit" movie trilogy combined grossed nearly $6 billion at the box office.
Dhaka, Sept 16 (UNB) - Before the 71st Emmy Awards (Primetime Emmy Awards) on September 23, the Creative Arts Emmy Awards were given out in a two-night event. The Creative Arts Emmys focus on the technical categories, reports The Indian Express.
The ceremony threw up a few surprises. On Sunday, HBO’s Game of Thrones, which concluded with its eighth season earlier this year, won the most awards: 10. The acclaimed HBO miniseries on the Chernobyl nuclear disaster titled Chernobyl won seven trophies.
Meanwhile, Free Solo, a documentary directed by Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin and based on a free solo climb of El Capitan by rock climber Alex Honnold, dominated Saturday with seven wins. The film had also won an Academy Award earlier this year.
Here are all the major winners at Creative Arts Emmy Awards 2019:
Outstanding Guest Actress In A Drama Series
Cherry Jones for The Handmaid’s Tale, “Holly”
Dhaka, Sept 16 (UNB) - Marvel Studios has released an unfinished, deleted post-credit scene from Iron Man (the original one) that shows Samuel L Jackson’s Nick Fury speaking to an unseen Tony Stark about the ‘Avengers Initiative’, reports The Indian Express.
Fury talks about the “gamma accidents”, “radioactive bug bites” and “assorted mutants” before going on to complain that now he has to deal with a spoiled brat (which would be Tony) who does not play well with others and wishes to keep all his toys to himself.
The interesting thing about this is that Marvel Studios execs wanted the Marvel characters whose film rights were owned by Fox (mutants or X-Men) and Spider-man (Sony) into the fold of Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).
Although a similar scene did make it to the final cut of Iron Man and Fury did taunt Tony similarly, he did not mention either the bug bites or the mutants.
With Disney’s acquisition of most of Fox and its intellectual properties, X-Men and Fantastic Four will eventually be a part of the MCU. Spider-Man was part of the universe as well until last month thanks to a deal between Marvel Studios and Sony.
But as yet, the arrangement stands dissolved due to disagreements and Spider-Man: Far From Home may be the last time we see Tom Holland’s wall crawler in the MCU. The next Spider-Man film will be solely made and distributed by Sony.
London, Sep 15, (AP/UNB) — Model Naomi Campbell took center stage at London Fashion Week on Saturday night with a gala charity benefit at the impressive setting of the world famous British Museum.
The gala capped a warm day filled with shows and presentations, including runway offerings by Alexa Chung and House of Holland and millinery by master hatter Stephen Jones.
Big names are still coming up, with shows scheduled by Burberry, Victoria Beckham, Christopher Kane and Julien Macdonald as Fashion Week reaches its glittery climax.
NAOMI CAMPBELL'S 'FASHION FOR RELIEF'
The Naomi Campbell hosted event was the latest "Fashion for Relief" fundraiser organized by the well-known model, whose efforts are supported by a wide array of friends and designers. The first charity show was in 2005 in support of victims of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.
At the event, the British Museum's steps and foyer became a red carpet staging area for fashionable elite who passed the time drinking chilled champagne and margaritas while last minute checks were made on the models' makeup and outfits.
Campbell said this year's benefit was to raise funds to protect vulnerable children throughout the world and help provide education and skills development. The black-tie event drew a huge and enthusiastic crowd, including many who stayed for a private dinner after the runway performance.
Actor Pierce Brosnan and actress Naomie Harris were among the star contingent, and the show was supported by a wide array of global fashion houses including Gucci, McQueen, Marc Jacobs and Vivienne Westwood.
As an eclectic, gender-bending and fun night got underway, no single theme emerged. But the overall impact was impressive.
Some of the outfits were clearly meant to be over the top, including mens' looks that seemed to bare all: Many outfits did not cover the chest (putting a premium on gym work), and most of the tops were sheer. Double-breasted suits were meant to be worn without shirts and costumes paired white vinyl shorts with clear tops.
Women were given more variety, including floral jumpsuits, beautiful black, tight-fitting dresses, one dramatic black pantsuit with puffy pink sleeves and shoulders, and "Conehead" style veils. There were also spiky overcoats, sexy kimono outfits, Russian-styled Rasputin outfits for men, and glittery silver elbow-length gloves.
Overall it was punky, with plenty of attitude and edge.
ALEXA CHUNG SHOW ATTRACTS ADORING FANS
An early start couldn't deter Alexa Chung's legions of loyal fans, who flocked to a Saturday morning show which included outfits that offered variations on her classic feminine themes.
Chung greeted fans with a video message featuring a montage of what she described as "AC World." She described the new styles as "clothes to feel empowered in" with a theme of "female solidarity" and said they were designed to "get over heartbreak."
The TV personality also offered a pep talk to her mostly youthful audience. "Enjoy life, kids," she said. "It's great."
The collection featured a number of longer coats, including belted variations. Some were worn over slip dresses or beautifully constructed longer dresses. The colors were muted, with many variations of green and gray, and Chung paid homage to the American west with a denim dress that seemed to conjure up open skies and endless vistas.
There was a well-tailored double-breasted suit and some 60s-style jumpsuits, but no sign of Dynasty-style shoulder pads or power-dressing. Chung doesn't do flash, but she couldn't resist a few faux-snakeskin pieces.
Models wore mostly light makeup and flowing hairstyles to allow for a style that looked simple, easy and elegant rather than fussy or overdone.
Dhaka, Sept 15 (UNB) - As was expected, two of the biggest events in the pop culture of last decade — Avengers: Endgame and Game of Thrones’ eighth and final season — dominated the 45th edition of Saturn Awards in a ceremony hosted by Aisha Tyler, reports The Indian Express.
While Endgame took home six awards, the conclusion of HBO’s fantasy show clinched four, according to Variety.
Endgame was victorious in these categories: best comic-to-motion picture release, best actor in a film (Robert Downey Jr.), best supporting actor (Josh Brolin), best film production design, best film editing, best film make-up and best film special/visual. The film was nominated in 14 categories.
Game of Thrones won in these categories: best fantasy television series, best actress on a television series (Emilia Clarke), best supporting actor on a television series (Peter Dinklage) and best performance by a younger actor on a television series (Maisie Williams). The show was nominated in nine categories.
Zendaya won in the best supporting actress category for Spider-Man: Far From Home.
Saturn Awards are given by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films. They were initially limited to the films belonging to only these genres but have since been expanded to TV shows and home video releases.