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CineMunn Podcast is back with another new show! Vince Munn, Tommy Metropoulos and Benjamin Briggs invited me and Film Brat to join them on their podcast. We talked inspirations, favorite interviews and Oscar season thoughts. This is their longest show and funniest so please tune in and while your there...subscribe to these boys and give them some film love!!

Movie Maven and Film Brat Join CineMunn for a Podcast of film talk and other Mayhem!
with Movie Maven and Film Brat
HIDDEN FIGURES Offers a Look into NASA’s History

Jeri Jacquin

In theatres this Friday from director Theodore Melfi and 20th Century Fox is a moment in history that finally has come to the surface releasing the HIDDEN FIGURES.

The space race is on as the United States and Russia compete to put a man in space. Becoming frustrated as Russia pulls forward, Al Harrison (Kevin Costner) wants only the very best on his team. That would be Katherine Gobel (Taraji P. Henson), an African-American mathematician who is sent to work in a room full of men who clearly have their own issues with race.

Upset that she is part of the team; roadblocks are put in her way by colleague Paul Stafford (Jim Parsons) who isn’t happy she is there. To make matters worse, there is no restroom close by and the coffee pot seems to be off limits. Determined not to let that stop her, Katherine is joined by friends Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae) who wants to be an engineer and Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) who decides that she will move up the NASA ladder her way.

Slowly Katherine proves that her methods are spot on and so much so that John Glenn (Glen Powell) supports not only the work but Katherine personally. Harrison sees the tension between Katherine and Paul which calls for serious changes. Her frustration lies in the fact that the computations change daily and all her hard work is for nothing. By standing her ground the group begins to come together.

Dorothy learns through Vivian Mitchell (Kristen Dunst) that something called an IBM computer is the mathematical problem solver of the future. Knowing that means the jobs of she and the other women are in jeopardy, Dorothy takes matters into her own capable and smart hands.

Mary has the dream of becoming an engineer with NASA but knows that further education is something out of her reach. Told by capsule maker Karl Zielinski (Olek Drupa) that she needs to make it happen, Mary takes her dream to court!

When John Glenn prepares to go into space, he calls upon Katherine to give him the go from Mission Control – a place she has earned to be!

Henson as Katherine is smart and sassy working her way through many roadblocks. Believing in herself and her mathematical gift is inspirational as it should be with three young daughters looking to her for guidance. Taking on the larger position of putting a man into space, she puts her head down and pushes forward – until its time to do more than push forward. Henson gives Katherine grit and heart never letting one moment of doubt take her down.

Spencer as Dorothy is a woman who knows she is doing the work without the pay of a supervisor. As a problem solver, Dorothy takes it upon herself to learn about the new technology coming to NASA. Spencer has proven continually to be an actress who takes her roles to heart and Dorothy is no exception.

Monae as Mary is the saucy one of the bunch who has no problem telling it like it is. Telling people their issues is an easy way of hiding her own – which is to find a way to fulfill her dream. Feeling as if NASA is pushing the engineering dream further out of reach, Mary discovers a way to not only get the education she needs but make her mark doing so. 

Costner as Harrison doesn’t have time for games or those who play them. Bringing Katherine into the group he makes it clear that he doesn’t have time for anything but the best. Once he is made aware of the conditions Katherine is dealing with, he doesn’t waste any time removing barriers in his department of NASA. Costner leads but in such a way that his character is important but also steps aside for his talented lady costars to tell their part of the story.

Other cast include Mahershala Ali as Col. Jim Johnson, Aldis Hodge as Levi Jackson, Kimberly Quinn as Ruth, Kurt Krause as Sam Turner, Ken Strunk as Jim Webb, and Donna Biscoe as Joylette Coleman.

HIDDEN FIGURES is a film that digs deep into the history of NASA on a project that is hugely historical. What also gives these performances such richness is the set design and costuming. Any time I watch a period piece it is important to transport not only me but all viewers into the, pardon the pun, space and time of the story. HIDDEN FIGURES and director Melfi do just that.

. I had the pleasure of speaking with director Ted Melfi about HIDDEN FIGURES and what it took to bring that piece of history to the silver screen.

JJ: Good morning Ted, thank you so much for speaking with me today about your film.

TM: You are so welcome Jeri.

JJ: I had never heard this story before, what inspired you to become involved?

TM: When I first read the proposal by producer Donna Gigliotti and had the same reaction as everyone else of ‘How is this possible? There is no way this is a true story.’ I started to dig into it and understand that it was a true story of how NASA had a team of women putting our guys up into space I was floored. I mean I have two daughters and they are still being told in this day and age ‘don’t worry about learning the math’. I find that shocking especially since we are trying to lift them up and show them that they can do anything a man can. This story inspired me and there way no way I could say no too making this film.  

JJ: Especially since it is part of history, a lot of girls were told even when I was younger that math wasn’t important to learn.

TM: It is a shame that we minimized women in Science, Math and Engineering and the truth is they are as good if not more so having the mind for it. 

JJ: I think maybe a little more patience too.

TM: Yes!

JJ: When choosing the cast, what drew you to these three women in particular?

TM: I have been in love with Taraji P. Henson’s work ever since the film BENJAMIN BUTTON and in that film she blew me away. My wife and I saw it together and said ‘who is that actress?’ that was playing Brad Pitt’s mother in the film. I was blown away by her passion, strength and raw power and honestly. Then you watch her in the role of Cookie in the television series Empire and that woman from BEJAMIN BUTTON was now Cookie in Empire. I knew that she had this incredible range in her and I knew she would be the perfect off-beat choice of Katherine Johnson. I wanted to go for it and she was so inspired by the challenge and took it on. She is absolutely amazing and inspiring in this role.

JJ: And Octavia Spencer?

TM: Octavia, I mean there is nothing that I can say enough about her as Dorothy Vaughn.

JJ: I was actually thinking the same thing. I mean what more can you say about her?

TM: I know, Octavia could play absolutely anything you could throw at her and it would be fantastic. She is one of the greatest actresses of our time in my mind. That one was a no brainer. Janelle Monae playing Mary Jackson and we wanted someone different, unique and exciting for this character. Janelle is exciting and passionate and wild and inspired and takes dramatic turns. She always makes wild choices with her work and it shows in this performance as well. 

JJ: It’s the beautiful trio to be sure.

TM: Yes, Taraji brings the quiet introverted brain of the group. Octavia is the foreman and the maternal leader of the group and Mary is the wild child who always has to be reminded that it’s 1961.

JJ: You have Kevin Costner in the mix who seems to be the buffer.

TM: Kevin Costner is one of the most unique men I’ve ever met in my life. He brings that integrity and worth ethic into every thing he does. His character, Al Harrison, represents the glue that kind of holds the teetering space program together. He balances the science and the math along with the business and imaginative people. Back in 1961 in the Jim Crow south is dealing with racial tensions in the workplace. It’s not that he is unaware of what is happening as much as he doesn’t care. He is about the mission. In his mind the mission and the math of what they are trying to do trumps race and sex of a person. 

JJ: I hope that people get that there are so many issues in this film, not just one specific issue. How was that for you as a director covering it all?

TM: It was exciting to be honest with you. To me the 1960s was an explosive time in history. The space race was happening, the Cold War was happening, Civil Rights issue were happening, the Kennedy assassination was happening, Martin Luther King assassination was happening…

JJ: See, that’s what I mean, so many, many issues!

TM: They are all running parallel to each other as well. The Freedom Riders bus protested to Washington D.C. the day before Alan Shepard launched his first mission into space. That should tell you the parallels between these two races and how they basically started to achieve success together in tandem is mind boggling. To pack all of this in one movie was an enjoyable task and to be able to get to say something about who we were and who we are and what we can become as a country when we work together.

JJ: Did you find that you had to do a lot of your own research to allow yourself to get deeper into the film?

TM: Oh yes, I did endless research. I researched every detail of the movie. I dug into a mass amount of books and documentaries about all of this. The Discovery Channel had a series When We Left Earth: The NASA Missions (2008) and I dug as deeply into Civil Rights as I did NASA. I re-watched the PBS series Eyes on the Prize [A documentary that documents the Civil Rights Movement from 1952 to 1965] about how it all occurred. I did tons of photo research as well. In regards to the math I learned everything from the ground up from like trajectory calculations etc. I kind of became a dangerous expert of it all. 

JJ: When you are talking about the mathematical side of it, how did Taraji handle it? I mean she’s writing equations on the board so fast!

TM: Taraji being the mathematician consulted with the same person I did from Rudy Home who received his PhD. out of Morehouse College. He trained Taraji and she memorized the math having so much time with him. Taraji might actually be a genius on her own. What she can do I have not seen that often, memorize something and understand it in a very short period of time. She did it effectively and efficiently in one take.

JJ: I realize there is so much in this film to experience but as the director what would you want viewers to take with them after watching the film?

TM: See the film to be reminded of how great American has always been and how when we work together, regardless of race, sex or creed, there is nothing that this country can not achieve together.

JJ: It’s so very well said and very true, thank you Ted!

This director has a straight vision for this film and with an absolutely stellar cast bringing a story that should be shown in every classroom!

In the end – meet the women you don’t know behind the mission you do!

TROLLS is a Treasure to be Shared on Bluray and DVD
Speaking with the Directing Dynamic Duo Walter Dohrn and Mike Mitchell

Jeri Jacquin

Currently on Digital HD and coming to Bluray/DVD on February 7th is DreamWorks and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment release of TROLLS.

Cuteness, dancing and song are the absolute highlights of this animated film. It tells the story of Troll Village and the very colorful inhabitants. Surrounding them are the Bergen, very grouchy creatures who believe that they can only be happy one day a year during the Trollstice! 

Knowing it’s time to leave, the entire village escapes led by King Peppy (Jeffrey Tambor) who makes sure his beloved daughter Poppy (Anna Kendrick) is safe. Twenty years later the Trolls want to celebrate their Bergen-less life. There is one troll who isn’t happy about this. Branch (Justin Timberlake) tries to tell everyone that the party will bring their worst fears.

When it happens and the evil Chef (Christine Baranski) captures Poppy’s friends, she makes it her mission to find and rescue them – all well documented in her scrapbook. Talking Branch into going on the journey, the two go back to the Bergen’s town now being led by young King Gristle (Christopher Mintz-Plasse). 

Poppy meets Bridget (Zooey Deschanel), a scullery maid in the castle and both discover that happiness is found within as everything the Trolls and Bergen’s have experienced is about to change!

I had the amazing opportunity to speak with directors Walt Dohrn and Mike Mitchell who have brought this wonderful animated story to us. Both directors have a history in animation as Dohrn has been part of the SpongeBob SquarePants series as well as Dexter’s Laboratory when not lending his voice in SHREK THE THIRD and PENGUINS OF MADAGASCAR. He is also the voice of one of my favorite characters in TROLLS – Cloud Guy!

Mitchell had directed animation before with SHREK FOREVER AFTER and THE SPONGEBOB MOVIE: Sponge Out of Water. He also lent his voice in the films SHREK FOREVER AFTER, MEGAMIND, PUSS IN BOOTS and KUNG FU PANDA 3.

A animated combination of both of these gentlemen brings them perfectly together for TROLLS. I had the awesome opportunity to speak with Walt and Mike about the film, the impact on audiences, the ridiculously fantastic animation and a cast that is flawless.

Hi guys, thanks so much for taking the time to speak with me today. If my 18-month-old granddaughter could actually use bigger words together she might be the one wanting to talk with you.

Walt: We don’t use big words too much so we’d be fine with her on the line.

Mike: Yes, put her on the phone!

She would rather sing in her own way and dance than talk I think.

Walt: That is a very good way to be.

She has seen the film more times than I can count.

Mike: It really is a positive film for kids isn’t it? It is a feel good in these troubled times happy film.

Walt: We see the movie as one big party and encourage people to dance.

Mike: It was really amazing to see people in the theatres get up and dance. This movie does make you get up and dance.

Obviously you both have a love of animation in film with your history, but what made you want to get involved with TROLLS?

Walt: We adore music and we always wanted to get back to a film that tells a story using music in the way that we got to with TROLLS. That was one of the things is the excitement of telling a story through music more so than we have in the past and in a non-traditional way. The other thing that made us both excited about the project is that there were no established characters and we had a blank slate. It is the idea of these little stubby ugly-cute creatures with this big shock of hair.

Most people see trolls as these characters with orange or green hair with weird faces and kind of scary actually. TROLLS has taken the scary right out of them and made them adorable.

Walt: That was definitely what we were going for, making them contemporary. We made them cute and fun.

Mike: We updated them but kept the retro feel I think.

The one thing that took my breath away immediately was the crispness down to the fuzz on their vests.

Mike: That’s a real testament to the film. Walt and I know these CGI films have become so realistic. We wanted to take the technology and go in a different direction. We wanted to make a tree that seemed realistic but cover it in felt in such a way and make the ground carpet while make the leaves look like they were stitched by hand. Even this warm hand made fuzzy quality is a real testament to our Production Designer Kendal Cronkhite-Shaindlin took and went even further. Even the fire is made out of hair if you look very closely. Instead of skin, these trolls look like gummy bears that have been flocked in felt. It gives this a look like…I don’t know Walter, what would you call it?

Walt: A handcrafted feel and it gives the audience a more personal connection to the characters. They are more intimate and they look like items that you could easily hold in your hands. 

The whole Troll section in the store is paradise if you haven’t been to one lately. You are right, they are colorful and there is this pull to just want to hold them!

Walt: I think all those colors just ignite a part of the brain that makes you feel good. Looking at all those colors its like with my own young daughter who plays with the TROLL toys, just vivid. Getting all those colors was important to us.

Mike: It’s like a big rainbow dream.

Walt: That’s what is so amazing to have TROLLS with the technology of video streaming and Bluray is that the older audience will take a risk now and see the film. They will realize it is for them as well.

Mike: When they see it for the first time many people are surprised and tell me it is not what they expected. It has this weird irreverent comedy that is for grownups as well as for kids. 

The cast, you don’t have just a few names, you have a huge cast! It’s an amazing, were you even surprised at how many wanted to come on board with TROLLS?

Mike: Yes, it was amazing and it started with the triple threat. Every single actor starting with Anna Kendrick and then Justin Timberlake and all are tremendous actors and every single one of them has a sense of humor. They are all naturally funny, funny people!

Walt: And lastly – they can all sing! That was very important.

Mike: Zooey Deschanel can sing, she has an amazing voice. Christine Baranski is very funny and she can also sing.

Walt: You know we asked them to come in to pitch the story and talk about the characters and play them some of the music. They all fell in love with it. Justin immediately connected with the story and loved it. 

Mike: Everyone, right away, came on board because of the characters and the music.

When you hear Anna and Justin speak mixed with the facial expression of their characters, you kind of forget its Anna and Justin because of how adorable the Trolls are and their personality.

Walt: That goes to the design and animation team because they are amazing at what they do. I have never worked with the level of talent and crew as I have with TROLLS.

Taking a story like this from your brain to animation to screen and to Bluray, what is that like for each of you?

Mike: For me it was a gift because there was no story initially, just an idea. It was a creature with a shock of hair and small body. We were able to create a whole world which we did and tap into everything I love like The Muppets and Dr. Seuss. We have friends that work on the strange show called Adventure Time and the challenge was to bring some of that strange comedy into a big cgi film and craft a story with everything we wanted. It was really fun.

Walt: The day to day process working with these incredible artists was so enjoyable. I think now that it’s going to Bluray and digital streaming, it is another level of excitement to actually get more people to see the movie and hear their reactions. I get people sending me photos on Facebook with their kids looking like one of the TROLLS characters and even their pets! 

Mike: I get pictures of dogs wearing TROLL wigs! 

Walt: I mean my cat wears one.

I want to thank you both personally from the bottom of my heart for creating something that my granddaughter will be watching for years to come and I can’t wait to see what you both do next to top that.

Walt: Thank you Jeri, it was so nice talking to you.

Mike: Thanks Jeri, that means a lot.

Coming to Bluray and DVD on February 7th and currently on Digital HD is the happiest bunch of TROLLS that will totally make your day. Get ready to sing, dance and take up scrapbooking with DreamWorks and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainments release of TROLLS!

Director Walter Dohrn
Director Mike Mitchell
HBO Giveaway!

The Complete Third Season

Email with the title GOING SILICON in the subject line along with your name and address and good luck!

The Complete Fifth Season

Email with the title SHE'S MY VEEP in the subject line along with your name and address and good luck!

VICE PRINCIPLES Comes to Bluray from HBO: 
Speaking with star Kimberly Hebert Gregory

Jeri Jacquin

HBO brings class into session with the soon to be released Bluray, DVD and Digital Download pack of comedy that will test your take on laughter with VICE PRINCIPLES: The Complete First Season.

As two teachers plot and plan for control of the principle job at North Jackson High School, Neil Gamby (Danny McBride) and Lee Russell (Walton Coggins) are in for a big surprise.

Deciding to hire someone not from the school, the two teachers are introduced to Dr. Belinda Brown played by Kimberly Hebert Gregory. Coming into the school with high expectations, she had no idea that what was about to happen to her. 

From dealing with two adults acting like teenagers, an ex-husband who hasn’t grown up either and sons who test her every move – Dr. Brown is pushed to a breaking point that is nothing short of mind boggling.

I had the grand opportunity to speak with Kimberly about her role as the principal of North Jackson High School and shares with us an in-depth look at her character. 

Jeri Jacquin: Thanks for talking with me today Kimberly, how are you?

KHG: I'm doing great Jeri, thank you.

JJ: I have to tell you that I just fell for the series VICE PRINCIPLES and your character. Please tell me how you got involved with the project?

KHG: It really was an audition where they made a decision about the character early on in the pilot and I was doing another pilot at the time. Somehow it worked out that I got to go in and auditioned with Danny McBride sitting there. I was trying not to freak out; I mean it was a test with the leads! I did walk out feeling 'wow, this is a great moment, pat on the back Kimberly!' I made people who I truly respect in comedy laugh and thought it was a good day. They called back fortunately.

JJ: When you read the script did your jaw drop as much as mine did watching the series?

KHG: It did but for several different reasons. I'm actually reading everyone's part even though I'm Dr. Brown and reading it for the development of my character. I had to think about what was this world like that Belinda was going to be in. Just reading that this was taking place in a school and this was adults behaving this way in a school, I was blown away at how absurd it all seemed. The adults had really become the children.

JJ: It's almost too as if they had their own adult "high school' cliques with the rift between Gamby and Russell.

KHG: Absolutely and I think that may have been part of their desire to write something that mirrors our adults lives whether we can see it or not. We have created and do create these cliques with people who are cool and people who are not, people who deserve our wrath <we are both laughing at this point> and people who do not.

JJ: Your character is also the odd one out of the clique circle because everyone else knows what's going in at the school except Dr. Brown.

KHG: I think that's the sinister nature of it all between these three characters. You have two people who are actively working to take someone out to get a job! That’s the nature of the comedy and the story. I believe that if Belinda even suspected what they were doing, both would have been gone day one. Its worse that Gamby and Russell are both actively and jointly trying to get rid of her. The beautiful flaw in her character is that she is so overwhelmed and consumed with her personal life that even when there are clues that should pull her in get past her because she needs the job for her own sanity. Then she tries to play Gandhi in many situations.

JJ: She has such a trusting nature in ways because lets be honest, you don't expect this behavior from staff. You go in with a great nature that takes such a dark turn.

KHG: She goes in ready to clean house within the first few episodes. You discover that these guys are horrible human beings and somehow perform their jobs leaving her to think they are good people. She has no idea of the personal crisis coming her way when they do what they do to her house. They have put things together in such a way that it's hard for her to know who is doing what. I don't know that Belinda is well meaning all the time, in fact that's why I think I love this character. She had to meet them where they were at some point.

JJ: I have to ask how much fun or not fun filming the last dark scene; I think you know which one I'm talking about.

KHG: I have to be completely honest and say it was my least comfortable, least favorable and least enjoyment. That moment I can not watch. I remember how I felt as Kimberly and I didn't want the world to see me doing that. It took a lot out of me. I remember a day or two before shooting that scene Danny and I were talking and we were waiting to do a scene and he said, 'how is it going?' I mean he is such an amazing guy and such care taken for me as an actor and a person who is new to their world. So when he asked how it was going I said, 'could you just take back that scene?’ He said, 'no we can't cut that!'

JJ: If it helps, what it did for me as a viewer is that you finally see this deep vulnerability. I mean when you are a principal you have to be the strong one, you have to show you can lead and solve problems. In that moment there is a scared vulnerability that is totally relatable as I thought man, I've been there before.

KHG: I knew that too when I read it. I read that scene and thought yep, that’s the one. When we had our meeting and they asked if I had any questions I said 'yep, I have a question'. I wanted to know how the scene was going to be done and it tested my personal insecurities. It was around then that I started to grow right along with Belinda; I mean she had to have that ending. It had to be that, it had to bad. I think part of me not wanting to do it was because I was so protective of my character. I wanted her to be in the world in such a way that we could all look at her and say 'yes, I know how that feels'. I felt like that for her to give up on so much that was going on in her life, drinking again.

JJ: I'm surprised your character didn't start drinking way before that!

KHG: Her whole experience was a difficult one to deal with that’s for sure.

JJ: I know it’s hard to talk about a series or give anything away for those who haven't seen the series yet, but what would you want viewers to know about your character that maybe only you know about her?

KHG: She is such a scared woman. I think that's the biggest thing. She is afraid about everything that is going on in her life, her job and inside she's afraid. That can manifest in so many different ways so for Belinda I think as a woman who works in a male driven position, you are your most vulnerable during all of those insecurities. I think that was the secret to her for me. I knew her and I know we all know her. No matter who you are we all know that place when a part of us says 'what are we doing?'

JJ:Exactly. Thank you so much for talking to me today. You are an amazing woman to have taken on this role and do it to the point of giving your character so many facets that we can all relate to. I appreciate you so much.

KHG: I really appreciate that Jeri; I hope that I answered your questions.

JJ: You did, and it makes it more fun when we can laugh about some of it.

KHG: Absolutely!

VICE PRINCIPLES: The First Season is a show you don’t see coming which makes it all the more worth a marathon watch. The series on Bluray, DVD and Digital Download pack this week from HBO Home Entertainment so might I suggest on this blustery weekend indoors that laughing be back in session.

In the end – we all need someone to look up to!

Our Winners List!

HBO Girls
Helen R. - S.D, Ca
Rita O. - Spokane, Wa

HBO Quarry
Bernie W. - Windmere, Fl
Geraldine R. - Boca Raton, Fl

From Dusk Till Dawn
Robert N. - Stockton, Ca
Ronald Oliver - Stockton, Ca

HBO Looking
David H. - Fayetteville, NC

HBO Ballers
JD B. - Matlawan, Mi

R. Ramirez - Temecula, Ca
Sadie T. - Elyria, Ohio
Talking with Georgia King

Jeri Jacquin

HBO brings class into session with the current release on Bluray, DVD and Digital Download pack of comedy that will test your take on laughter with VICE PRINCIPLES: The Complete First Season.

When the Principal (Bill Murray) resigns from North Jackson High School, the position of principal is being carefully watched by two very different teachers. Neil Gamby (Danny McBride) is a no-nonsense teacher and counselor who isn’t about to change his tight ship ways and Lee Russell (Walton Coggins) who has a frightening side all wrapped up in a well dressed charming teacher. The outgoing principle knows neither of these men is fit to lead any high school.

Taking on the new incoming principal Dr. Belinda Brown played by Kimberly Herbert Gregory, these two are going to turn the school upside down until one of them wins! Fellow teacher Amanda Snodgrass played by Georgia King, is a new teacher who wants to do well at North Jackson High. Her first run in with Gamby doesn’t work out well and gives her an idea of what she is dealing with.

But sometimes weirdness makes strange bedfellows as Amanda tries to understand Gamby and realizes that he isn’t exactly what everyone thinks. The season’s journey for Amanda is filled with twists and the reality that sometimes we are all a little two-sided.

Georgia as Amanda has been busy performing on the small and big screen. I first have to give a shout out to her 2012 performance in one of my favorite hilarious film COCKNEYS VS. ZOMBIES playing the role of hostage Emma. She also played the role of Goldie in the television series The New Normal and Jess in Vicious.

Now, Georgia is the sweet and understanding Amanda Snodgrass in the HBO series VICE PRINCIPLES. I had the complete joy to speak with Georgia about her role, working with McBride, Coggins and Gregory and what it’s been like to be on a show that tests our funny bones.

Jeri Jacquin: Hello Georgia, thank you so much for talking with me today. How are you?

Georgia King: Great, how are you?

JJ: I’m so glad we finally were able to speak today. I have to tell you, I have been singing the praises of your show because it made me laugh so hard.

GK: Really? Oh that’s so great to hear, really it is.

JJ: It could also be that I have a twisted sense of humor so there’s that tidbit. What was your reaction when you got the script?

GK: Actually I was super lucky because I got the entire first season in one email, that’s nine scripts. I sat down, read them and felt like I had been tickled and slapped in the face at the same time and turned upside down. I mean it was wonderful but the show is also mixed with pain, mistakes and a bunch of humanity. It actually moved me as well as making me gasp and laugh. I remember script two when [beeping out spoiler here!] and things like that usually happen in a final episode of a season. I thought ‘oh my this is wild!’ Also this is a wonderful series because they wrote it like a very long movie.

JJ: That’s the other thing I thought was amazing about this show is that you are not allowed to breathe while you are watching it. Everything happens so quickly and it’s like you can’t pick up your jaw because it’s just immediately going to fall again. 

GK: Also, the writing is just so clever and it’s a testament to Danny, the writing team and everyone behind the camera. For me it didn’t feel like a quick 30 minute show comedy because there are so many ups and downs. I mean you are feeling desolate in some episodes and gleeful in others. Its very exciting to do the process and then watch it thinking wow, we did that and it’s powerful for different reasons. It’s kudos to Danny and Jody Hill and David Gordon Green for making that happen.

JJ: Watching it is almost exhausting!

GK: Try being in it <laughing>

JJ: Personally I don’t think I could take an hour show. I truly think 30 minutes is all the jaw dropping hilarity I can take on this level. 

GK: It feels like an hour in the best possible way.

JJ: Your character is Amanda Snodgrass, and don’t take this wrong but is the normal one.

GK: Oh yes, she’s smack in the middle of chaos and I think what is super smart about the set up for my character is that she is a new teacher. She has a lot of ideas of what it will be like and she’s excited and a lot of positivity. The reality of the situation is very different than her expectations and I think that’s really fun to play.

JJ: It’s interesting to what your character grow because even though she doesn’t really lose that new teachers hope, she embraces a little bit of the craziness about the other characters that even they don’t realize about themselves. 

GK: Yes, I agree absolutely. What I think is so wonderful about the show to is that it’s not about the kids but the adults who are behaving worse than the students. Their preoccupation with everyone is their own rivalries and it’s not to do with helping the kids. They are busy being selfish and you realize that Amanda isn’t all put together either. You start to see she has a lot of issues and it was exciting to work with Danny to figure out what it is between Amanda and Gamby, two very different people, and track that relationship. If you want the audience to cheer you on, it is important to figure out what the dynamic of that relationship is. That was a very cool collaborative experience with Danny.

JJ: By the end of the season what I came to understand about Amanda and Gamby is that the reason you both click is because you recognize the same insecurities in each other.

GK: Totally, good, yes you got it!

JJ: A+ for me!

GK: I’m smiling so hard, that’s it! They are two very lonely people who are not where they thought they would be at this time in their lives. They don’t know where they are going and have hopes and dreams filled with insecurities. I think also, and it might be a cliché, but we are the best of ourselves around each other. Amanda and Gamby feel safe and secure together and it shows by Gamby validating Amanda’s writing and supports her. He doesn’t make her feel self conscience about this dream of hers and it’s a beautiful thing – amongst all the terrible things of course.

JJ: We have to talk about working with Danny and Walton, which had to be just a hot mess of fun.

GK: It’s like a dream hot mess of fun. These two men are two of the best human beings I have ever come across, so is Kimberly for that matter. Well, let’s throw in everybody because it’s true. You know how in interviews people say ‘oh this is the best cast I’ve ever worked with’, well, for me it actually was. We work so well together, we play hard and all lived together in Charleston for eight months so we were joined at the hip like a gang. Walton and Danny are incredibly smart men, insanely smart men and incredibly generous and so funny but in different ways. Because of that they complimented one another. I can’t believe I get to work with them.

JJ: I spoke to Kim already and after laughing and talking with her I completely understand how she got the role of Dr. Brown. Now speaking with you it is seriously clear how you were chosen to play Amanda Snodgrass. Both of you are so sweet talking about your cast mates and knowing this is the craziest show ever put together – so whackadoodle that it’s amazing beyond belief.

GK: Oh that’s so cool, thank you for saying that.

JJ: When the season was over I was bummed.

GK: A friend of mine came to the screening and she was so livid that season one ended the way it did. She can’t believe she has to wait a year to find out more. 

JJ: I’m walking over to my Bluray player throwing the box at it saying ‘this is some b.s. right here’. I didn’t want it to be over, I mean I have my guesses about the finale ending but come on!

GK: That makes me so happy. It was one of the most insanely amazing experiences I’ve ever had. I was so excited to work with this group of people that I didn’t realize until episode three that I was working with Danny McBride! I was so overwhelmed working with the group.

JJ: I wanted to really thank you so much for talking to me.

GK: I’m so excited you like the show, it’s awesome.

JJ: I can’t wait to see what Amanda is going to put up with next.

GK: There is so much more to put up with.

JJ: Gamby has a lot more to throw her way and I can’t wait to see what it is! 

I so enjoyed speaking with Georgia (and laughing) today and honestly could have spent the entire afternoon talking about the show VICE PRINCIPLES. King as Amanda gives a sweetness in the middle of madness that is extraordinary. There are so many twists and turns in her character that season two can not come soon enough. 

That being said – I love that fact that she sees something in Gamby that everyone else doesn’t. Yes, it’s nauseatingly sweet and I’m owning it! I’d also like to be a fly on the wall during filming of the next season just to see it all come together.

VICE PRINCIPLES: The Complete First Season is a must-see for everyone with a twisted sense of humor. McBride and Coggins together are a duo that not only bring the best of dark comedy but man they can be disturbing in an awesome way. I love the show and nothing is going to change my mind. It is testing, irreverent, kind of gross, hilarious, jaw-dropping, insane and pretty much a good time.

The series is co-created by Danny McBride and Jody Hill and will have a second season on HBO. This should surprise no one because I’m not about to be happy being left with these two still in high school! I want conflict resolution, okay no I don’t, I want to see Gamby and Russell take another shot at their dream job.

The Bluray and DVD include the Exclusive Bonus Features of Deleted Scenes, Blooper Reel (prepare for serious laughs) and Audio Commentaries with Cast and Crew including Danny McBride, Jody Hill, Walton Coggins and more.

Prepare yourself for everything you think is funny and find out it’s so very much more!

Saban’s POWER RANGERS Sets to Re-ignite Franchise on the Big Screen:
Talking with the Power Rangers

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to the big screen this March from director Dean Israelite, Saban Entertainment and Lionsgate are the iconic heroes known as the POWER RANGERS.

A group of high school students discover an alien ship and what they find inside is about to change their lives. Superpowers are bestowed and another generation will get to know the name Power Rangers who now must stop an old enemy and save the world.

The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers are iconic characters came to American televisions in 1993 from the Super Sentai Japanese material. Since then the heroes have morphed to other series such as Might Morphin Alien Rangers, Power Rangers Zero, Power Rangers Turbo, Power Rangers in Space, Power Rangers Lost Galaxy and so many, many more.

In 1995, the MIGHTY MORPHIN POWER RANGERS: The Movie hit movie houses and TURBO: A Power Rangers Movie followed in 1997. Now Saban’s POWER RANGERS is ready to break out in theatres in an epic way to reignite the adventure imagination in families everywhere. 

I had the opportunity to speak with the Red Ranger Jason Scott played by Dacre Montgomery, the Black Ranger Zack Taylor played by Ludi Lin and the Pink Ranger Kimberly Scott played by Naomi Scott.

Jeri Jacquin: Wow, I get to talk to three Rangers. I’m pretty excited about that. How are you all doing?

Montgomery, Lin & Scott: We are doing great! <in unison which made us all laugh>

JJ: I have to let you know that my grown kids who said that if I didn’t come today that I couldn’t show my face ever again.

Naomi Scott: <laughing> Oh my gosh no! 

JJ: They were raised on Power Rangers and even took time when they were younger to explain it all to me. So knowing you are coming into this generational and iconic series, how is that for each of you?

Ludi Lin: We are asked this a lot and each time we answer it brings us a new perspective on it all. Certainly in the beginning there are a lot of fans emailing us about their excitement and sharing their stories. They are also in their 30’s and sharing their memories of watching the Power Rangers when they were a kid. Also there certainly is a responsibility that we take seriously because I grew up watching the Power Rangers as well. If you watch the movie and see the script we saw from the beginning, there is so much about the story that I’m excited about and the reason being is that this is the story that wasn’t told in the original series. It delves deeply back into the background of these characters. It’s the origins story of how these kids become heroes so you have a chance to get attached to the characters. 

Dacre Montgomery: It’s a chance to see the development without the masks on and the spectacle that comes much later.

LL: So it’s less episodic Power Rangers but more the whole complete arc of the entire story of how they become super heroes.

Naomi Scott: I didn’t grow up watching the series per se but I so remember playing Power Rangers with my brothers and wanting to be a Power Ranger. I think that shows that even if you didn’t watch the shows you wanted to be a Ranger. Red was my favorite color so I had to be the Red Ranger. The fact that there were two girls was always cool to me because it showed how girls also wanted to be Ranger heroes too. For me, it has been exciting and we all focused on who is Kimberly Hart. I think we are able to have a blank canvas because this is an origins story so aside from the iconic character from the original series, we have a chance to find out who Kimberly Hart is. I was excited about that because I could bring in who I thought she is.

JJ: It’s interesting that back in the original series, having a female superhero character wasn’t a common thing really.

NS: No, it really wasn’t.

JJ: The girls were always the sidekick or a little in the background instead of front and center they way they were and are in the Power Rangers. 

NS: Absolutely. I think it is important and maybe that’s why it has such a broad appeal. You have the diversity that is also cultural in the mix that makes an impact. 

JJ: Once you become the heroes, the diversity isn’t the focus because once you put the masks on it’s about what you bring to the table as a group.

DM: Jeri, I’m stealing that from you.

NS: Yes, we are stealing that from you.

LL: Let me just make a note here.

<we all break out laughing which continues to make this interview the best time I could have with iconic characters sitting right in front of me>

JJ: Dacre, the Red Ranger has had such a big responsibility in the past, how was carrying on that tradition for you?

DM: I went to drama school and think of everything as an ensemble. My parents worked behind the camera in the film industry and I was taught growing up to appreciate every piece of the puzzle to bring it all together. The watch-face doesn’t exist without all the cogs behind it so for me I just consider myself one of the five watch-faces if you will. There was definitely the deal with me rallying the troops and I felt so supported all the time off screen by my cast mates. When the camera rolled with that support it was easy to play into that camaraderie and going into battle together. It’s a huge responsibility, don’t get me wrong, I mean your own kids were huge fans and now there are young kids who are big fans so this means a lot to a lot of people. 

JJ: My kids will be watching but you don’t need anymore pressure right?

NS: It’s weird, I don’t feel that pressure only because my responsibility is to the character of Kimberly. It’s different to what’s gone before and even if I was doing a different movie as an actor that’s how I feel about it.

LL: I hope everyone will enjoy it for different reasons. So you have the old school fans that are older and now the new kids like your grandkids. Do your grandkids know about the Power Rangers? 

JJ: This is Naynay (nickname for Grandma) you’re talking to here, of course they do. I mean there’s a whole DVD library of the series that gets borrowed and borrowed. One of these times I probably won’t see them ever again. So you are getting three generations who are in-the-know about the Power Rangers. 

NS: Man, that’s just absolutely incredible, seriously that’s just amazing.

JJ: The technology they use in the film, how was that for you as actors to play into your characters?

LL: There is so much technology, the physical sets were also technology. The first time we stepped on the set it dawned on us that we were part of this huge super hero massive budget movie. Before that we were just running around in dirty clothes getting blown up. When the Power Rangers suits came in we saw the technology and were stunned by how much detail went into them. 

DM: They look exactly like the movie poster in real life.

LL: The other piece of technology is that after we put the suits on the special effects team puts on the computer effects. That’s why it was so shocking for me to screen the movie. I finally saw the final product that is so seamless and entertaining.

DM: Here is a piece that hasn’t been shared with anyone.

NS: Jeri, you are getting an exclusive right here <laughing>

JJ: Really? Okay, I’m ready – hit me with it.

DM: They built a tank for us in the water scenes and the filtration system in the tank was transported from the Olympics. It is the very same filtration system and we had a large body of water that was heated. It was 40,000 gallons of water or some ridiculous amount like that and they heated the whole pool. They transported the system to us to use in the tank for the film. I thought that was amazing to have happen.

LL: You got the exclusive Jeri. I didn’t even know that.

JJ: Don’t share that with anyone else from this moment on okay? <laughing> Final question, for all the fans eagerly anticipating the film, when they walk out of the theatre what do you hope they take away from the film?

NS: I definitely want them to feel like a kid whether they are or not. If only to have a couple of hours to just be entertained and indulge themselves. Isn’t that what movies are suppose to be? Shouldn’t there be escapism just for a little while? I love to go and see films because it’s nice to get away from everything that’s going on in the world.

DM: I second that.

LL: I think I just want them to imagine, just imagine. 

DM: It’s escapism absolutely. That’s why I go to the movies.

You heard it here first folks! The Power Rangers want you to gather up everyone that is a fan and even a few that don’t know they are a fan and escape into a world of fun. The action packed film will bring it and I’m thrilled that the Rangers took a moment out of their busy schedules to share their own excitement about the upcoming Saban’s POWER RANGERS.

Saban’s POWER RANGERS will be in theatres March 24th! 

We have an Easter Giveaway to beat all Easter Giveaways!
All of these amazing family films are loved by kids and kids a like. Email with EASTER IS COMING in the subject line and your name and address and good luck!!
Fox Home Entertainment Wants to Make Sure Easter Baskets are Filled – with DVD Fun!

Jeri Jacquin

Easter is just around the corner and spring is in the air! That’s what makes this egg carton of fun filled DVD’s so exciting. Fox Home Entertainment is ready to add family time to the approaching holiday.

So, our only question is – who is hopping excited to win!? We have an amazing prize pack to offer up with the beloved family favorites with Here Comes Peter Cottontail, Ice Age: The Great Egg-Scapade, and Peppa Pig: Around the World.

But that’s not all as the Veggie Tales Crew is joining in the holiday fun with Veggie Tales: ‘Twas the Night Before Easter, Veggie Tales: A Very Veggie Easter Collection, Veggie Tales: An Easter Carol, Veggie Tales: Easter Double Feature with Easter Carol & Abe and the Amazing Promise, Veggie Tales: Easter Double Feature with Twas the Night Before Easter & God Made You Special, Veggie Tales: Esther, the Girl Who Became Queen and finally Veggie Tales: Noah’s Ark.

Each of these DVD’s is filled with colorful characters with amazing stories to tell and fun that can be shared with the entire family!

All you have to do is email with EASTER FUN in the subject line along with your name and address. 

We look forward to announcing the winner!

Ready to go back and visit ROGUE ONE? Well, I happen to have a Digital Movie code up for grabs! Email me at with GOING ROGUE in the subject line along with your name and address in the body of the email and good luck to you all!