Posts Tagged ‘Youtube’

Cartoon Network Making Some Good/Some Not-So-Good Decisions

April 21, 2010

I realized the other day why the blog of Shway has been neglected recently (That almost rhymed).  On top of the fact that my life has only accelerated at three times the normal rate lately,  I have ALSO become an avid twittererererer.  You should find me at twitter.com/thealexhluch. Anyway, I found THIS news on twitter this morning, which is basically a breakdown of Cartoon Network’s upcoming line-up.  Interspersed throughout are some interesting tidbits, such as an awards show for sports stars (?), another DC Justice League incarnation regarding younger superheroes (Teen Titans, anyone?), and a cartoon sketch comedy show which has donned the moniker of MAD magazine (This, I actually support).  However, the most startling/jostling/frightening news is the rebooted Looney Toons franchise.  The concept behind which is that the show will now focus on half hour, fully-fleshed-out ideas between the classic tunes, who have now been moved to the suburbs (see: Tiny Toons).  As the article points out, this seems counter-intuitive to the entire Looney Toons model and especially dense considering today’s audience of Youtubers used to clips under a MAXIMUM of ten minutes.  Of course, Tiny Toons worked (fifteen years ago, with the brilliance of Bruce Timm and Paul Dini behind it), so SURELY the WB knows what it’s doing.  Right?  RIGHT?!?

THR: Bugs Bunny Returns

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The Internet, Porn, and Chat Roulette

March 16, 2010

Technology is RAPIDLY changing our everyday lives, and it is no more prevalent than in the realm of entertainment.  As technology becomes more and more advanced, one would think that the need for liver interaction and community would be completely eradicated in exchange for the glossied, hyper-air-brushed, pristine world that film, video, and new media can give us through editing and cinematography.  I’m not even adverse to this direction, but the simple fact is that it is not completely accurate.  I was on Current.com the other day when I watched their episode of Vanguard (an EXCELLENT documentary program, btw) which was on Porn 2.0.  The intent was purely research, OF COURSE…*ahem*…Anyways, the creator of Kink.com (I know, it’s hard to keep a straight face for ME, I can’t imagine how you guys reading this are doing it) which is one of the leading pornographic hubs which has embraced the digital age, said that piracy and the rampant availability of content on the internet was DESTROYING their profits, so they knew that they had to turn to different strategies of entertainment to retain customers and continue to be viable enough to draw out a buck from the everyday consumer.  Ironically, the format that Kink has decided to go with is that of developing their live community.  Kink has invested in developing a sense of communion amongst viewers that can only be established by presenting live, original, exclusive content to their paying customers, which additionally provides an outlet for group interaction.

As creepy and far-fetched as the above trist may have seemed, it has been festering in my mind the last few days and became even MORE apparent when I found this video online of someone messing with others on Chat Roulette.  For those who don’t know, Chatroulette.com is a site where you interact with other webcammers on a totally random basis.  You have no idea who you will get and you can skip to the next person at any given time.  Kind of like speed dating only with even LESS commitment.  The overwhelming complaint of Chatroulette is that it is almost entirely comprised of lonely guys looking to show off their packages.  This, however, opens the doors wide open to an entirely different, improvisational use for the site and further makes me wonder if live performance is, in fact, not dead, but simply being reformatted to fit the newest parameters of our digital society.  Check out the video below and give Pianochatimprov some HUGE support on the Youtubes.  He deserves it!

Glitter Puke

February 14, 2010

Have you ever heard puke auto-tuned?  No?  Neither had I, but let me tell you, it’s fabulous.  The Key of Awesome strikes again with a brilliant send-up of Kesha entitled Glitter Puke.  Basically, it’s a musical intervention.  Yea, it’s that famazing.  So here’s a great way to start off you Valentine’s Day for those of us that will be spending the day trolling the internet in our underwear (this guy). 

Banana Song (I’m a Banana)

February 11, 2010

I love the internet.  The ever-shifting landscape of the entertainment industry coupled with the prevalence of new media and content sharing has birthed a beautiful new class of entertainer, what I have dubbed the Bourgeoisie of Filmmaking.  There is a new middle class of filmmakers that have little to no funding, yet make videos with just enough quality and technical finesse that they require a skilled hand to create.  Pulling together makeshift equipment, props, actors, and crafts, these new pioneers of the digital shift are very much akin to George Lucas in the early 70’s trying to get his space-epic made.  Of course, Lucas has morphed into the all-powerful digital monolith that he has become and has done everything in his power to distance himself from humanistic endeavors and cinematic techniques, but I digress.

All this just to talk about an absurd video with a banana suit.  At first I simply thought this video was hilarious.  Then I slowly began humming the tune in my head after a few views.  THEN I began to crave the video in its intravenous state.  Eventually I had to check into rehab and bunked up with Sam Ronson to kick my addition to this wonderful little digital short.  That Onision guy is talented!

Shy Ronnie

January 15, 2010

Andy Samberg seems to be made of musical gold.  Everything I hear from him is either absolutely hilarious or absolutely catchy.  And Shy Ronnie is both.  Samberg has teamed with Rihanna to produce an incredibly addictive two-minute duet that you’ll be humming all day.  Oh, and it’s also pretty funny as well.  Seriously, is Samberg the sole factor keeping SNL on the air right now? 

P.S.  I have no idea why the click is backwards, and if the Youtube vid gets taken down for copyright reasons, HERE is the clip on Hulu.

Letterman Comes to Conan’s Aid and Bashes Leno

January 13, 2010

Remember when the late-night wars were about ratings, and generally between the stations?  Well, not anymore!!!  Jay Leno is REALLY ruffling the feathers of talk show-hosts nation-wide and his old friend Mr. Letterman is finally speaking out on it.  While I am in NO WAY, SHAPE, OR FORM, a Letterman fan, I actually quite enjoyed these two clips that I was sent on Ain’t It Cool.  Maybe out of all this insanity, Craig Ferguson can emerge and finally get the recognition he deserves.  Enjoy!

Clip on CBS.com!

The Key of Awesome

December 9, 2009

The Internet is quickly becoming a factory for better and better content. I found this collection of comics where I find everything these days, /Film. The Key of Awesome is a relatively new web show that produces songs a la The Lonely Island.  Primarily comprised of singular actor Mark Douglas, all the episodes are RIDICULOUSLY well-put together with quite sinsere production value (meaning Chromakey and some unique editing choices). Hosted under the Barely Political channel, which is also home to Auto-Tune the News and Obama Girl, the songs are all genuinely FAMAZING and the bar for quality has already been set pretty high. I’ve listed my two favorites below. One questions the few, yet fairly glaring inequities of The Dark Knight’s script, while the other is a send-up to Lady Gaga’s odd performance technique.  The Dark Knight production features wonderful iterations of Michael Caine’s Alfred, Christian Bale’s Batman, and Heath Ledger’s Joker, all interacting in the most marvelous meta-mash-up I may have ever seen. I LOVE IT. I swear, I might as well just start a “Batman” category while I’m at it.

Trailer for Batman 3

November 24, 2009

Truly Wonderful!  Someone has created a mash-up fan-trailer for the next Batman movie.  It features Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Johnny Depp as The Penguin and The Joker, respectively.  Both actors have been tethered to rumors that they are attached to the newest project despite the fact that Nolan himself hasn’t even publically announced his involvement.  Regardless, this trailer is SO good (I still believe there is an art to trailer-makin’) and it makes me PRAY that Nolan goes ahead with a Depp/Hoffman pairing.  It will take these two together to try and accomplish what Ledger and Eckhart pulled off.  So, without further ado, my Bat-dream movie!

P.S.  Also, if you checked out the previous post on Nick’s Commercials and realized that all of the Youtube links were unembeddable, I apologize, I found out too late.  You can still use the links above them or just click the links to their Youtube pages.

P.P.S. Bears With Sparklers 🙂

The Top 5 Hardest Working Actors in Show Business

November 10, 2009

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It’s easy to mock celebrities, actors in particular, who stress to the public how difficult and important their lives are and how much fame belabors those facts. Especially when we see them living such pampered and extravagant lives. I’m here to discuss five men in Hollywood who actually DO live rather industrious existanses and yet fail to ever complain about them. In fact, most are as hard-working as they are due to their love for what they do, and wouldn’t have it any other way. Now, check all your false pretenses at the door, this list takes NO monetary statistics into account to tabulate this list. I’m simply conducting an opinionated grouping of five actors who I feel have taken on more than most men can handle in the show biz…biz, and I’m compiling this list in relation to this point in time, Autumn of 2009. Yes, Seth Rogen has appeared in MULTITUDES of films over the last five years, but after Funny People and Observe and Report of this year, the guy has been laying pretty low. This list tabulates the mainstreamers who have been racking up leading role credits in muliple expansive flicks. So, without further ado…

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5. Johnny Depp

To say that I respect this man would be an intense understatement. His acting prowess is some of the best of our time, so it makes me EXTREMELY happy to see him inundated with work. If you’ve been living under the sea (visions of The Little Mermaid just popped into my head. Walt Disney prevails) for the past year then you probably haven’t heard of Depp’s numerous forays into film he has recently undertaken. Public Enemies was the only work he appeared in that was released in ’09, however, he has been fast at work on massive cinematic staples of the 2010 movie-going season that will almost-assuredly dominate the market. The first being Tim Burton’s reiteration of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. Depp plays The Mad Hatter in Burton’s CGI-laden could-be-wonderful-could-be-terrible still up-in-the-air retelling of the classic story. Headlining next to Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham Carter, Matt Lucas, and Alan Rickman, the film has all the makings of a complete cinematic win, the screenshots and trailers, however, leave doubt in my mind, as CGI-laden, as I said before, is putting it nicely. Time will tell. Depp also was involved in Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus, filling one of the three roles created after lead actor Heath Ledger’s passing. Depp, along with Colin Farrell and Jude Law, will stand in for Ledger as alternate versions of Ledger’s character, to help the stroy along despite the events that took place prior to the film’s completion. The next chapter in the Hunter S. Thompson chronicles, The Rum Diary, is also in post, in which Depp will reprise his role as the gonzo-journalist.
In addition to these films that Depp has finished, the newest film in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is slated for a 2011 release date and is currently in the earliest stages of pre-production. Sin City 3, which Depp has been rumored to be involved with basically from its inception, is also geared up for a 2012 release (funny considering Sin City 2 is still stuck in developmental hell).
And here’s the kicker. IMDB lists Depp as in development with FOURTEEN new titles, as well. Among them, a Dali biopic and The Lone Ranger. Wow, simply wow. While these developmental deals can fall through at any time, they can also usually indicate desire and co-involvement between the parties of the actors and the producers. It will be interesting to see where Depp’s career goes looking towards these titles.

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4. Brad Pitt

Here’s another guy with developmental deals in spades. The ‘ole rusty, trusty IMDB has Pitt pegged with sixteen deals, the most I could find. In addition to being attached to The sequel to Downey Jrs Sherlock Holmes vehicle, Pitt is also listed with World War Z and a Steve McQueen biopic. Goo.
Pitt tore up the screen in Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds this summer, and has currently been attached to the fledgling project Moneyball, which is listed as being in the earliest stages of production, despite the fact that it has no director. Pitt is further attached to The Tree of Life and The Lost City of Z, as well as providing a voice to the upcoming animated flick Oobermind. He’s also rumored to be apart of 2012’s upcoming The Odyssey and The Sparrow.

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3. George Clooney

The former Sexiest Man in America has never slowed down since his rocket-propelled rise to fame in the mid-to-late 90’s as well. Clooney most recently has released The Men Who Stare at Ghosts, a loosely based adaptation of the book of the same name which regards a 1970’s to 1980’s military experiment that documented telepathic phenomena. In addition to this recent film, though, Clooney finished up providing voice work for the titular role in Wes Anderson’s upcoming The Fantastic Mr. Fox, alongside Bill Murray, Meryl Streep, and Jason Schwartzman, as well as polishing off his role in the Jason Reitman-helmed Up in the Air, which is also currently in post. These are merely his acting credits for 2009, though, the man also executive produced the Matt Damon vehicle The Informant! and Playground, a movie I honestly couldn’t find too much on. As far as his queue list goes, IMDB has him cited with ten in-development deals.

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2. Jim Carrey

Jim Carrey is a man of many faces. The actor became famous for his rubber-faced persona that landed him a slew of comedic work in the mid-to-late 90’s and a career launching pad that ANY actor would be proud of. By the turn of the century, however, Carrey was becoming far more versatile as an actor. Already dabbling in the dramatic with The Truman Show, Liar Liar,, and the INCREDAMAZING Andy Kaufman biopic, Man on the Moon. Carrey then went on to tackle the serious side of life full-tilt in Charlie Kaufman’s magnificent Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, opposite Kate Winslet, The Majestic, and the box office blunder The Number 23. He has returned to comedy in recent years, however, and, as always, has fully immersed himself in his roles. Recently released is the Zemeckis-penned adaptation of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol in which Carrey provided the movements and voices to Scrooge at all ages of life AND the three spirits that visit him! Encompassing multiple accents, multiple ages of life, and multiple SPIRITUAL BEINGS, Carrey tackled the project head-on while keeping busy with multiple other projects, such as I Love You, Philip Morris, the tale of an escaped homosexual convict who goes on a quest to find his lover that was released from prison before he was. The film has been receiving stellar reviews and co-stars Ewan McGregor opposite Carrey in this bold and self-titled dark comedy. All the while that these two flicks have been in post, Carrey has both been bulking up and studying up to play Curly Howard in the upcoming Three Stooges revamp with Paul Giamatti and possibly Benecio Del Toro. This was all considered fact for the longest time and was referenced multiple times by Carrey’s apparent weight gain in the tabloids and public citings, but, as of late, Carrey has been described as withdrawing from the project. It doesn’t negate the fact that the man was taking on multiple roles immediately after finishing his previously mentioned two. Further, IMBD.com has Carrey listed in FOUR different upcoming development deals. Which may seem normal for a star of his status, but when you consider the work load he will indefinitely take on with these upcoming roles, it makes a profound statement on his desire to never be bored.
In addition to his films and the launch of a fully-functioning personal website that has actually made the rounds and received a warm/geeky reception from the film/internet blogosphere, Carrey and his wife Jenny McCarthy have consistantly maintained their involvement in the charity Generation Rescue, which strives to find alternative ways to treat autism in children. Not bad for a man who was talking with his butt a little over 10 years ago.

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1. Nicolas Cage

Go ahead and laugh (you’ve earned it) but the man has yet to produce a dull movie (I said ‘dull’ not ‘bad’) and his work output is something for ANY actor to admire, regardless of how badly he phones roles in. Before I continue, most of you know, but for those who don’t, everything I joke about Nicolas Cage comes from a place of sincere reverance. Yes, the man takes part in AWFUL movies (which, given his current economic situation could just be to keep the lights on) but in each film he’s in he is always FULLY committed to the story being told. And I’m sorry, but I’d rather watch Cage run around in a Bear suit any day FULLY EMBRACING THE ROLE than see Tom Hanks win ANOTHER Oscar for appearing in some adaptation of a story set in the 1940’s. ALL TANGENTS ASIDE, Cage has kept himself QUITE stacked as of late. In early 2009 the CGI-Fest known as G-Force dropped with Cage providing a voice as well as Cage’s vehicle Knowing, in which he played the lead. Throughout the remainder of the year he has worked on The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Matthew Vaughn’s Kick-Ass, Season of the Witch, and Werner FOOKING Herzog’s Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans. Did I mention the voice that he provided for Astro Boy? No? Well, lump that in there as well.
IMDB has him attached to 4 deals in development, one of which being (GET READY!!!) Ghost Rider 2! Which creators have said will distance itself from the original as a revamp, not a sequel. Yet, it still stars Cage as the lead. Oh, how I LOVE this man! It simply amazes me what Hollywood will greenlight.

And speaking of hard working, (and by hard-working, I mean shameless self-promotion!) visit my sketch troupe’s Youtube or Facebook and comment/subscribe/hate/love/befriend/never talk to us again/enjoy our attempts at making you laugh!

The Joker Blogs

November 8, 2009

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What started out as a simple, single-camera Youtube production has rapidly turned into my favorite series to follow…on any format. The Joker Blogs is a masterfully constructed web series put together by a group of film-savvy batfans COMPLETELY dedicated to the story that all us bat-nerds know and love. Starting up where The Dark Knight left off, this group has created a captivating series chronicaling the Joker’s time in Arkham. Having only glimpsed the main bat-character’s of The Joker, Jeremiah Arkham, Harleen Quinzel (who we still haven’t ACTUALLY ever seen on camera), and Scarecrow (for a single episode), the group has proven that they know how to create so much with so little. Twelve episodes deep and with multiple shorts that coincided with the holidays, The Joker Blogs is currently in the midst of the Joker’s escape from Arkham.

As I mentioned before, many episodes are straight-on shots of the Joker in a confessional/documentary-esque style. What began as Harleen Quinzel’s attempt to document one of her most alluring patients, has turned into a hobby of the Joker’s; he sees the Youtube phenomenon as a cheap, easy, and intriguing way to broadcast his endeavors to the masses at large. The series has almost no budget, however, and is putting together episodes in literally two to three takes at times, yet it still manages to be an amazing stylistic achievement. The simple fact is that talent abounds in this group. From the exquisite scripts to the beautifully constructed web site and marketing scheme, everything about The Joker Blogs screams quality. The MOST amazing and important part of the equation of awesome, however, are the performances. The portrayal of the Joker is spot-on to Ledger’s iteration, with even a few added touches of genius to the character that help it flourish on its own. From the laugh to the cracked voice to the constant quiver that made Ledger’s clearly-unstable machination of the character stand out, The Joker Blog’s interpretation has nailed every facet of the character in the world that they are painting. While it is a bit awkward to not know who is behind the character himself (I couldn’t find the actor’s name anywhere, if anyone else can provide the info, by all means comment or just message me) it’s simply wonderful to see an actor bold enough and talented enough to take the initiative and succeed in recrafting a role that many critics whined “could never be done successfully again.” For the longest time, I was afraid that after Ledger’s death the mainstream would never ever touch my favorite villain again. With efforts like this, however, I feel safe assuming that the most absurd villain of all time will not forever be equated with the late, great Ledger. It simply wouldn’t be fair. These shorts DEMAND to be watched, though. Become immersed (it doesn’t take too long to catch up, most episodes come in at under 3 minutes), and help these guys garner some recognition for the sensational work that they are putting out! Below are some direct links. I have posted the first ever vid, a link to their home site, a link to their Youtube page, and a link to a radio interview the filmmaker did explaining a bit of how the whole process was started. Enjoy!

TheJokerblogs.com

Youtube!

Radio Interview.