Rhimes working on 8 Netflix shows

Netflix is about to look more and more like Shondaland.

According to Entertainment Weekly the mastermind behind “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy” Shonda Rhimes has a host of new projects in the works for Netflix. With producer Betsy Beers by her side, EW says the duo and their team will set out to create eight new shows for the streaming service, all of which center on diverse stories.

For instance, EW says that one untitled project is “based on the true story of Anna Delvey, the Manhattan socialite/con-woman, as written about in New York Magazine,” while another — “The Warmth of Other Suns” — will be “an adaptation of the Pulitzer-Prize winning Isabel Wilkerson’s novel about African-Americans feeling the Jim Crow South.”

And for Rhimes, telling a vast array stories isn’t something that just happened; instead, it was her mission.

“I wanted the new Shondaland to be a place where we expand the types of stories we tell, where my fellow talented creatives could thrive and make their best work and where we as a team come to the office each day filled with excitement,” Rhime said in a statement, according to EW. “Ted and Cindy and everyone at Netflix have been incredible partners in making that happen. This is Shondaland 2.0.”

For a full list of Shondaland 2.0 projects in the works, click here.

Aniston snags role as first female president in Netflix comedy

It looks like the United States might get its first female president after all — that’s all because of a brand-new comedy coming to Netflix.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, in a new Netflix production called “First Ladies,” Jennifer Aniston will star as America’s first female president, and playing her wife will be comedian, actor and writer Tig Notaro.

The script is also co-written by Notaro, says THR, who worked with Stephanie Allynne to tell the tale of “Beverly and Kasey Nicholson, America’s first female President and her wife, the First Lady, in a story that promises to show that behind every great woman is another great woman.”

Also working on the project are Adam McKay and Chris Hency (executive producer), reports THR, along with “Will Ferrell, Jessica Elbaum and Betsy Koch for Gloria Sanchez Productions.”

Rodriguez to star in ‘Carmen Sandiego’ remake

Netflix has found their new Carmen Sandiego — and two times over.

According to Entertainment Weekly, Gina Rodriguez will play the film’s namesake character in a live-action remake, which follows a “fictional thieving villain from the 1990s educational children’s series.”

But Rodriguez’s contributions to the streaming service’s revival of the film don’t end there; in fact, EW reports that she will also lend her voice to Netflix’s original animated series based on the character.

What’s more is that EW says “the live-action version will also be produced by Rodriguez through her I Can and I Will production company, alongside Kevin Misher and Caroline Fraser.”

Way to go, Carmen Sandiego — er, Gina Rodriguez!

Poehler to star in, direct wine-filled comedy for Netflix

If you needed a reason to love Amy Poehler even more, her latest project may be it.

According to Refinery29, the actor and friend in our heads will be making her directorial debut with a Netflix film called Wine Country, which “film follows a group of pals who head to Napa to get their grape on and celebrate one of the women’s 50th birthdays.”

As if the plot isn’t enough, Refinery29 reports that the film’s cast features all of Poehler’s besties, including ” Rachel Dratch, Maya Rudolph, Ana Gasteyer, Paula Pell, Tina Fey, and Emily Spivey, who also penned the script.”

With an all-star comedic cast, it’s hard to not be excited for the film — and Poehler & Co. seems to feel the same. Netflix announced the news Wine Country‘s forthcoming release by tweeting out a video of Poehler and her co-stars singing the Kenny Loggins song, “Whenever I Call You Friend” in slightly-tipsy unison.

While there has yet to be a release date announced, one thing is for sure: this film is going to be one to watch.

Watch the “trailer” here.

DuVernay makes history again with new film feat

Just over three months into 2018, and Ava DuVernay has already had quite a year: the director and producer not only celebrated the release of her acclaimed and inclusive A Wrinkle in Time, she also made cinema history along with Black Panther, with her film and the Ryan Coogler project marking the first time in history that “films by black directors with $100 million plus budgets have ever placed in the first two box office spots.”

But now, DuVernay is making history again, this time by entering the superhero universe: according to Glamour, she will be “taking on Jack Kirby’s beloved series New Gods, which means she’s the first black woman, and only the second woman after Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins, to lead a DC comics blockbuster.”

Glamour said DuVernay confirmed her history-making news on Twitter, sharing a photo of Jack Kirby along with his quote, “Our dreams make us large.” Her tweet then spurred a deluge of support and praise, with some called her “The GOAT” (a.k.a the ‘greatest of all time’), while others expressed their congratulations and overwhelming excitement.

Adding to the excitement of DuVernay’s new project is that she is a fan of New Gods, says Glamour, sharing that her favorite superhero is “Big Barda, a powerful heroine with superhuman strength created by Kirby.” And, as Glamour points out, because the series only appeared in a limited way, DuVernay will have all the room to make New Gods her own.

And we know she will!

Nyong’o pays for 600 kids to see ‘Black Panther’

The #BlackPantherChallenge all began as a fundraising initiative to bring children from Harlem to movie theaters to see the box office smash Black Panther. But one of the film’s stars just took that challenge to a whole new level.

According to Glamour, actor Lupita Nyong’o took to Instagram to announce that, along with her mom, joined the challenge and paid for 600 kids from her hometown of Kisumu, Kenya to watch the film. Urging others to join the movement, Glamour says Nyong’o explained why it’s so important that kids see the film.

“I wanted kids from my hometown to see the positive images reflected in the film and superheroes that they can relate to on the big screen,” she wrote.

In one of the videos accompanying her post, Glamour reports that a girl who was able to watch the film because of Nyong’o’s kindness said that the film taught her about “being a good leader by never giving up in the face of challenges and ‘people coming together to work as a team, to achieve, and to build our nation.'”

 

Gadot defends ‘Wonder Woman’ Oscar snub

When box-office smash and feminist favorite “Wonder Woman” received a grand total of zero nominations for this year’s Academy Awards, fans took to social media to vent their frustrations.

According to PopSugar, fans tweeted their frustration over the snub, with some “wondering how a critically panned movie like ‘Suicide Squad’ could get nominated and ‘Wonder Woman’ isn’t,” while others asked, “‘Did any of those a*sholes see Wonder Woman?'” But for Wonder Woman herself Gal Gadot, the film was never about trying to garner awards, anyway.

“I was very moved and touched by the people who were disappointed that Wonder Woman wasn’t nominated, but we certainly never did the movie for that,” she said during a recent interview with ET, according to PopSugar. “I think that you can’t have it all. We’ve done this movie and it was received in such an amazing, wonderful way, and we want to stay humble and grateful, and we’re going to have another movie, so who knows? Maybe the next one!”

…And that’s how you handle this situation with grace.

Male actors to don black at Globes

With female actors planning on wearing black to the Golden Globes this year to protest sexual misconduct and gender inequality in the entertainment industry, their male counterparts are joining in their support.

According to Entertainment Weekly, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Ilaria Urbinanti, a celebrity stylist, “confirmed that at least some of the gents attending the big event will also be donning black in solidarity with their female colleagues.”

Urbinanti took to Instagram to share that some of Hollywood’s leading men will wear all black, says EW, or at least all of the men she styles will be taking part in the movement — men such as The Rock, as well as Tom Hiddleston and Armie Hammer.

With women’s voices finally getting the attention and support they deserve, perhaps Urbinanti summed it up best when she wrote, “Safe to say this may not be the right time to choose to be the odd man out here… just sayin…”

Streep seeking to end sexism in Hollywood

Sexism is everywhere: in corporate America, in schools and in sports. But according to Meryl Streep, it doesn’t have to exist in Hollywood any longer.

That’s why she’s teaming up with her fellow actors to change the culture in the movie capital of the world and forge a level playing field for all. Glamour reports that at the Massachusetts Conference for Women, Streep told Gloria Steinem that she’s working with other actresses to stamp out sexual harassment and lead the charge in creating an environment of equality.

“Right now I’m getting together with a bunch of actresses that you know very well, and we’re all sort of going to make a set of nonnegotiable demands,” she said. “We’re after 50-50 by 2020.”

Spurred to create change by the numerous allegations against former film producer Harvey WeinsteinGlamour says Streep sees him as the most egregious case of the sexism that exists in Hollywood and beyond.

“The thing about Harvey Weinstein is that he is sort of the most gargantuan example of a kind of disrespect that permeates every industry, every enterprise,” Streep said, according to Glamour. “I’m not sure why. I have a lot of theories — maybe it’s in response to the women’s movement. Maybe it’s in fear of the women movement. But these abuses are about dominance.”

And changing that notion of dominance starts with lifting more women into high-ranking positions of power, says Streep, who thinks that “it starts at the top, none of these shenanigans would have filtered down and been tolerated.”

Offering a suggestion for every industry, Glamour said Streep summed up her argument by urging employers — and white men in power — to hire beyond their own ‘type’ to increase not only the diversity of employees, but also diversity of thought.

“White hires white. A guy who wears his baseball cap backward hires a guy who wears his baseball cap backward,” she said. “So we have to encourage the people who are currently in power, who are of one gender, to open the door.”

 

 

Bell becomes first host of SAG Awards

There’s a first for everything, and the first for the Screen Actor’s Guild Awards is about to happen.

According to Entertainment Weeklythe Guild announced that their 24th annual awards show would have its first-ever host, tapping Kristen Bell for the job that also “marks the first time the telecast will air with a live emcee since its inaugural program in 1995.”

To commemorate the occasion, EW says Bell took to social media to share the news — and to poke some fun at herself in the process.

“I’ve been asked to host the SAG Awards this year, which means, to all my friends who’ve been nominated, I get to choose who wins!” she said in the video, according to EW. When someone off-camera tells that’s not the case, she responded, “That’s not how it works? Then what am I doing? Like, Anne Hathaway and James Franco did? I’m doing that? Why, did I lose a bet?”

Looks like Bell is already going to make a great host with her quick supply of jokes! Get ready to catch her in action when the SAG Awards are live at 8:00 p.m. ET on TNT and TBS.