Saved by the Bell Reboot Trailer: It’s 2020 so This Show Could Actually be Good

Saved By The Bell Trailer
(YouTube/ONE Media)

A lot of things have happened this past year that are simply unprecedented. From the global pandemic to murder hornets to water on the moon to Tiger King, 2020 has been full of unpredictability, but perhaps nothing has caught me more off guard than this:

Saved by the Bell is being rebooted, and it looks sort of… good?

Look, the bar is low. The original Saved By the Bell, which I watched religiously on Saturday mornings and after school, was a trainwreck of a show. The acting was bad, the humor was unbearably cheesy, and the entire thing was amateurish on every single level. The cast pretty much all went on to success of some kind, barring Dustin Diamond (Screech) who gained little more than notoriety for being a creep, and Lark Voorhies (Lisa Turtle), who basically disappeared from the public eye.

The rest of the cast, which included Mark-Paul Gosselaar as Ferris Bueller-type Zack Morris (who only recently started watching the first series), Tiffani-Amber Thiessen as cheeleader and girl-next-door Kelly Kapowski, Mario Lopez as jock A.C. Slater, and Elizabeth Berkeley as brainy feminist Jesse Spano (I hate myself for remmebering all of this), went on to successful careers of varying degrees.

Of course, they couldn’t have been too successful, because all four of them are back in the reboot!

The premise has been updated to fit modern times, with Bayside forced to welcome outsiders into its privileged confines (and Zach is now governor of California because rich white people always fail upwards!), Slater and Jesse working at the school where Zach’s son rules the roost, and the humor has been updated to maybe – possibly – have some actual laughs!

Of course, this being SBTB, there are plenty of indications that no, this will not be good, like the character of Zack’s son, who immediately looks unbearable. Also Max, the magician waiter (and owner?) of the local hangout, is back for some reason, as is the “Friends Forever” song from one of the original series’ most absurd episodes. So tread lightly!

It premieres on Peacock on November 25th:

Trailer for Animaniacs Reboot Takes Aim at Reboot Culture

Animaniacs Reboot Trailer
(YouTube/Hulu)

If you’ve been reading The Dad for a while, you’ve probably noticed we spend a fair amount of time talking about – and bemoaning – the constant stream of news about reboots and remakes and reinventions. Partially because that’s all Hollywood seems to make these days, but mostly because it’s annoying!

One reboot we’re totally down for, however, is the forthcoming revival of Animaniacs, the hilarious cartoon from the 90s that makes fun of pop culture just as much as we do. The first season arrives in November (with a second season slated for 2021), and here’s the official synopsis:

They’re back! The Warner brothers, Yakko and Wakko, and the Warner sister Dot, have a great time wreaking havoc and mayhem in the lives of everyone they meet. After returning to their beloved home, the Warner Bros. water tower, the siblings waste no time in causing chaos and comic confusion as they run loose through the studio, turning the world into their personal playground. Joining Yakko, Wakko and Dot, fan-favorite characters Pinky and the Brain also return to continue their quest for world domination.

Sounds like they’re going to be up to their old tricks, and based on the new trailer, maybe some new ones too. Because guess what? The Animaniacs are as fed up with Hollywood’s constant “re” stuff as we are. Even their own!

Check it out:

Warwick Davis Is Back for ‘Willow’ Series on Disney+

Warwick Davis Willow Return
(Lucasfilm)

Back in the 1980s, every movie studio was trying to replicate the success of Star Wars, which helped usher in the blockbuster era and made fantasy epics the superhero movies of their era.

So overwhelming was the desire to create the next fantasy saga that even George Lucas himself, the man behind Star Wars, tried to capture lightning in a bottle the second time, this time with the help of Ron Howard and Val Kilmer.

It didn’t go so well. 1988’s Willow, directed by Howard from a story by Lucas, wasn’t exactly a huge success, and never spawned any sequels. But the fantasy tale of a farmer’s unlikely alliance with disgraced soldier Madmartigan in order to protect a baby from an evil queen has endured as a cult favorite.

And now it’s going to be a TV series that takes place years after the events of the film, with Warwick Davis reprising his role as Willow Ufgood and a pilot directed by John Chu, the man who directed Crazy Rich Asians. He has a strong connection to the material.

“Growing up in the ’80s, Willow has had a profound effect on me,” Chu told Deadline. “The story of the bravest heroes in the least likely places allowed me, an Asian-American kid growing up in a Chinese restaurant looking to go to Hollywood, to believe in the power of our own will, determination and of course, inner magic. So the fact that I get to work with my heroes from Kathleen Kennedy to Ron Howard is bigger than a dream come-true. It’s a bucket-list moment for me. Jon Kasdan and Wendy Mericle have added such groundbreaking new characters and delightful surprises to this timeless story that I can’t wait for the world to come along on this epic journey with us.”

The show starts production next year, and will eventually find its home on Disney+.

Jared Leto Is Back as The Joker in Zack Snyder’s Justice League

Jared Leto Joker Justice League
(DC Films)

Jared Leto’s Joker is back, as he’s slated to make an appearance in “Zack Snyder’s Justice League.” Leto will be reprising the role he debuted in 2016’s Suicide Squad, although hamstrung by a middling script, the reviews of his brief screen time were ambivalent. DC fans are hoping Leto gets more of a chance to leave his mark during the reshoots for Justice League.

The Snyder cut is shaping up to be an interesting, and incredibly unique, viewing experience. You rarely get to see a director pick up a project he had to leave midway through, let alone one on a huge budget. HBO sunk a TON of money into the project, as the budget for reshoots and editing is near $30 million. The entire main cast is expected to take part in reshoots during this month. The final project will be a massive, four-episode event on HBO Max.

After ‘Suicide Squad’, no one expected to see Leto back in the role as the Crown Prince of Crime. Especially after Joaquin Phoenix’s masterful take on the role in the latest to interpret the tortured criminal.

Snyder supposedly will present his original vision for the film, which has a darker tone overall than Joss Whedon’s sanitized version. And, with it being a four-episode event, we’ll get a lot more than we would from a theatrical version. That means more of some of the other heroes that have since been fleshed out in other movies. More Wonder Woman, and plenty more of Jason Momoa’s Aquaman. We’ll also get a glimpse of the real villain pulling the strings behind the scenes.

Supposedly, Snyder is using none of the footage shot by Whedon, which is why so many reshoots are being done.

Leto’s inclusion opens up a ton of possibilities for the project though, as he was not included in the original film, and now fans are wondering just how much new content will be part of the finally finished project.

The Snyder Cut will hit HBO Max in 2021.

Mando Gets a Jetpack in New Season 2 Footage

Mandalorian Special Look
(YouTube/Star Wars)

If you’re anything like me, you can’t wait until the end of October. Not only does the month culminate in Halloween – which will be (safely) celebrated one way or another, COVID be damned!, it also brings the premiere of season two of The Mandalorian.

The new season hits Disney+ on October 30th, and over the past few months, we’ve got a trailer and a bunch of hits about what the second season will entail. We know Mando is attempting to take The Child, aka Baby Yoda, to find his people, and that the bounty hunter is avoiding the wrath of Moff Gideon and his darksaber as he does so.

He will have the help of his two friends, Greef (Carl Weathers) and Cara (Gina Carano), who are wary of encountering “a race of enemy sorcerers,” and may or may not run into Ahsoka Tano, who may or may not be played by Rosario Dawson.

According to the new footage Disney+ just released, Mando will also be seeking assistance from his fellow Mandalorians (“If I can locate other Mandalorians, they can guide me,” he says), and the jetpack he coveted last season.

Check out the new footage, and get ready. Only ten days away!

‘Coming 2 America’ is Coming to Amazon

Coming 2 America
(Amazon)

Eddie Murphy is staging quite the comeback.

In 2019, he roared back into our lives with the very fun Dolemite movie on Netflix, made an appearance in Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Drinking Coffee interview series, made news for a Beverly Hills Cop sequel, and absolutely crushed it when he hosted the show that made him famous, Saturday Night Live.

And he’s not done.

Later this year, Murphy will appear in Coming 2 America, the sequel to Coming to America, one of his most beloved movies, in which he plays an African prince who comes to America (duh) in the search for love. He finds it, and everyone lives happily ever after. Until the sequel, in which Prince Akeem, about to become King, learns he has a son he never knew about. He heads back to America with his best pal, Semmi, played once again by Arsenio Hall, in order to retrieve his son.

The highly anticipated sequel was supposed to go to theaters, but with COVID wreaking havoc on the movie theater industry, there’s been a change of plans. Like Mulan and Soul (arriving on Christmas) for Disney, Coming 2 America is now headed straight to streaming on Amazon.

According to Variety, the film will become available on December 18th, shortly after the Borat sequel lands on the service, which is clearly ramping up its premieres. It will also be home to the Michael B. Jordan adaptation of Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse.

It’s pretty unfortunate that most of us won’t be going back to theaters any time soon, but at least we have some legitimate movies to watch at home while we wait for COVID to just magically disappear like a miracle.

Hopefully, his next project is that Beverly Hill Bad Boys crossover.

New Trailer for Unsolved Mysteries Showcases Spooky Stories

Unsolved Mysteries Trailer 2
(Netflix)

One of the few bright spots of 2020’s deluge of horror has been some of the streaming content we’ve gotten. From Tiger King to the Jordan doc, and from Hamilton to Mulan, there has been a lot of great content for us to consume during the pandemic.

Among the most popular content has been true crime documentaries, and Netflix has been at the front of the line in terms of providing us with titillating stories of the worst aspects of human nature. Over the summer, the streaming service even revived the old classic Unsolved Mysteries with a new collection of stories featuring murders, disappearances, and UFOs.

There was no Robert Stack and no voice-over, but the show was a hit, and now it’s coming back for round two.

Netflix released a trailer teasing the next collection of stories, which includes a White House aide who may have been a spy, a couple of NYC kids who went missing from a park, and even a ghost story in the aftermath of Japan’s deadly earthquake and tsunami in 2011.

Check it out below. The new season drops on October 19th!

Marvel Rumored To Have Its Eyes on Keanu Reeves for Moon Knight Role

Keanu Reeves Rumored as Marvel's Moon Knight
(YouTube/The Cosmic Wonder)

This has been a big year for both Disney+ and Keanu Reeves. Disney+ hit the ground running during their first eligible year at the Emmys, taking home an amazing seven Emmy wins for The Mandalorian alone. Keanu Reeves, meanwhile, has had a busy year of being an all-around excellent dude. Oh yeah, and he starred in the brilliant third installment of Bill & Ted, all while having several other movies in the works. Now, Marvel is working on a Disney+ adaptation of Moon Knight – and supposedly, they’ve got Keanu Reeves in mind to play the series’s protagonist.

Moon Knight, AKA Mark Spector, first appeared in a 1975 Werewolf By Night comic. Former CIA agent Mark Spector gained his superpowers after his double-crossing employer left him for dead at an archeological dig. Khonshu, the Egyptian Moon God, made him a deal – a second chance at life, in exchange for being his incarnation on Earth. Spector was alive, but now held the responsibility of becoming Moon Knight. He created multiple identities to distance himself from his questionable past and invested his money in crime-fighting gear.

Moon Knight has never appeared in films, but Disney+ is finally giving this superhero the recognition he deserves with his own series. Rumors have begun circulating that Marvel hopes to have Keanu Reeves play the heroic but slightly mysterious millionaire, which makes sense – I mean, he does sort of play one in real life.

Marvel pursued Reeves for the 2019 Captain Marvel movie as well, but filming conflicted with John Wick 3. Keanu Reeves has already dipped his toe in the world of Superheroes, starring in DC’s Constantine in 2005. In real life, Reeves is kind-hearted and generous, always humble even with his immense success. On screen, Keanu Reeves kicks a lot of ass and breathes new life into every role he plays – it’s no wonder Marvel wants in on it.

No word on whether there have been actual discussions between Reeves and the people behind Disney+’s adaptation of the comic, but production is supposedly starting before the end of the year – in all likelihood, we’ll have our answer sooner rather than later.

Hopefully, that answer is “YES- Keanu Reeves is finally joining the MCU.” It’s about dang time.

Samuel L. Jackson Coming To Disney+ in Nick Fury Series

Samuel L Jackson to voice Alexa
(Getty/Jon Kopaloff / Stringer)

Even during a pandemic, Marvel keeps making news.

We just found out that the Black Widow movie and Eternals were delayed from theaters again, thanks to the pandemic. We also got a (weird, awesome) trailer for WandaVision and learned that it will be the first MCU show to hit Disney+, arriving sometime before the end of the year, landing before the Falcon and the Winter Soldier and Loki. And they announced that Tatyana Maslany (Orphan Black) will be starring in the She-Hulk series, about which we know little else.

But perhaps the biggest news of all is the latest: Disney+ is bringing a Nick Fury show to the airwaves, and Samuel L. Jackson is coming with it.

The news of the Fury series comes out of Variety and so far we don’t know a thing about it. The last we saw of the eyepatched leader of (the now-defunct) SHIELD, he was lounging on a spaceship somewhere out there in Spider-Man Far From Home’s post-credits scene.

Will this show tackle his outer space adventures? Will they de-age him, Captain Marvel style, and watch as he builds SHIELD and assembles the Avengers? Will any of those Avengers make an appearance on the show?

We have no idea. Not that we need to. Samuel L. Jackson is probably the biggest star yet to hop from the MCU’s theater screens onto Disney+’s streaming platforms, and further solidifies the promise that these series will play into the MCU’s movies, once those finally get back in action.

Having shown up in 11 of the 23 MCU movies, Fury is a big part of the universe, and a major piece of connective tissue. It’s hard to imagine that whatever he’s up to on his show won’t somehow play into the movies, considering how integral he’s been to the forming of the team, and the importance of his relationship to Captain Marvel, who’s sure to play a big role in the next phase of the MCU.

We’ll see what happens, but it’s exciting that a movie star of Jackson’s stature is carrying his role over to Disney+.

I hope they allow swears.

John Cena Is ‘Peacemaker” in James Gunn’s Suicide Squad Spin-off on HBO Max

John Cena is Peacemaker
(HBO Max/Warner Bros Pictures)

Last month, DC made a big splash at the DC Fandome, during which we got the trailer for Wonder Woman 1984, some news on The Rock’s Black Adam and Shazam 2, the first look at a darker than ever The Batman movie, and a glimpse of James Gunn’s Suicide Squad sequel.

Gunn came over from Marvel to helm the sequel to David Ayer’s shoddy Suicide Squad movie, and based on the character introductions and tiny bits of footage we were treated too, it’s clear he’s infused the Suicide Squad with the same anarchic and goofy energy that made Guardians of the Galaxy a big hit. Along with his new tone, Gunn brought in an almost entirely new squad of costumed anti-heroes, one of which is Peacemaker, portrayed by former wrestler John Cena.

It seems that Cena and Peacemaker have made a good impression, as Gunn just announced on Twitter that Cena would be taking the character to HBO Max for a spin-off series.

Peacemaker is a man of contradictions, a hardcore pacifist who’s willing to kill for peace. Not exactly a straightforward hero, as Gunn explained in a press release about the HBO Max show.

“Peacemaker is an opportunity to delve into current world issues through the lens of this superhero/supervillain/and world’s biggest douchebag,” said Gunn in a press release. “I’m excited to expand The Suicide Squad and bring this character from the DC film universe to the full breadth of a series. And of course, to be able to work again with John, Peter, and my friends at Warner Bros. is the icing on the cake.”

Like the Suicide Squad sequel, there’s clearly going to be an element of comedy to the Peacemaker series, and, like Dave Bautista, another wrestler Gunn helped turn into a movie star by leaning on his deadpan humor, Cena is more than game for comedy, having already proven his chops in movies like Trainwreck with Amy Schumer, as well as in bits on SNL and Last Week Tonight with Jon Oliver.

HBO Max seems to be diving headfirst into DC’s comic book properties, moving forward with Zack Snyder’s Justice League and now developing multiple DC universe TV shows, with Peacemaker joining the previously announced Gotham PD series. If Wonder Woman 1984 and Matt Reeves’s The Batman deliver, and they can finally straighten out Superman, they might finally have something going.

 

New ‘The Haunting of Bly Manor’ Trailer Leaves Us at the Edge of Our Seats

Haunting of Bly Manor Trailer
(Youtube/Netflix)

In October of 2018, Netflix released its chilling original series, The Haunting of Hill House. The series exploded in popularity, becoming one of Netflix’s most beloved series. The story followed five adult siblings with pasts that continued to haunt them. The show brilliantly alternated between the lives of the adults and the horrible things they endured growing up at Hill House, beautifully demonstrating how their traumatic childhoods followed them like ghosts as they tried desperately to escape their pasts.

The 10-episode series was so enthralling, social media blew up with discussions and praise for the show within roughly the amount of time it would take a person to watch all 10 episodes consecutively. Fans asked, and now Netflix is delivering – season two of the show, The Haunting of Bly Manor, will premiere on October 9.

The show is set in 1980s England and is based on the 1898 horror novella by Henry James, The Turn of the Screw. Henry James steered away from typical horror tropes, choosing instead to give everyday situations and seemingly normal people sinister twists. Mike Flanagan, creator of The Haunting of Hill House returned for The Haunting of Bly Manor, meaning we can likely expect a similar level of elegant terror in season two.

The synopsis explains, “After an au pair’s tragic death, Henry Wingrave (Henry Thomas) hires a young American nanny (Victoria Pedretti) to care for his orphaned niece and nephew (Amelie Bea Smith, Benjamin Evan Ainsworth) who reside at Bly Manor with the estate’s chef Owen (Rahul Kohli), groundskeeper Jamie (Amelia Eve) and housekeeper, Mrs. Grose (T’Nia Miller). But all is not as it seems at the manor, and centuries of dark secrets of love and loss are waiting to be unearthed in this chilling gothic romance. At Bly Manor, dead doesn’t mean gone.”

The show’s second trailer is somehow more beautiful and unsettling than the first, with the stunning cinematography and the spine-chilling music that help make this series far more evocative than your typical horror flick. Watch the full trailer below, and look out for The Haunting of Bly Manor on October 9.

This Is the Way: The Mandalorian Snags Seven Emmy Wins

Mandalorian Doc
(Disney+)

Though the Star Wars franchise has undoubtedly had a lot of misses and false starts lately, The Mandalorian has been a saving grace in the Star Wars universe. Set between the fall of the Empire and the arrival of the First Order, the series follows bounty hunter Din Djarin on his various exploits, protecting Baby Yoda at all costs.

The Mandalorian is the first live-action Star Wars series, an enormous challenge given that it has to compare to the production quality of feature films. Fortunately, Disney+ jumped on the project, and The Mandalorian was a hit. Surpassing Netflix’s extremely popular series “Stranger Things” in audience demand, it was clear from early on that the Star Wars series would leave a mark on pop culture. Season two is already on the way, the trailer was just released, and fans of the show couldn’t be happier.

Night three of the Creative Art Emmys confirmed what we already knew – The Mandalorian is a show well worth celebrating. Since Disney+ has only been available since November of 2019, this is the first year that any Disney+ show has been eligible for an Emmy. Thanks to The Mandalorian’s staggering 15 Emmy nominations, the streaming platform hit the ground running. Walking away with an impressive five Emmy wins in one night, The Mandalorian took home more awards than any other show as of day three.

The Mandalorian took home awards for Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Comedy Or Drama Series (Half-Hour), Outstanding Production Design For A Narrative Program (Half-Hour), Outstanding Sound Editing For A Comedy Or Drama Series (Half-Hour), Outstanding Cinematography For A Single-Camera Series (Half-Hour), and Outstanding Special Visual Effects.

A brand new show snagging five Emmy wins is incredible, but the Star Wars series wasn’t done. The talented Ludwig Göransson walked away with the award for Outstanding Music Composition for a Series (Original Dramatic Score). The Mandalorian also won an Emmy for Outstanding Stunt Coordination for a Drama Series, Limited Series or Movie. That brings the grand total to seven well-deserved Emmys for this game-changing show, setting the bar high for future seasons.

Among the other winners for this year’s extremely unusual virtual Emmy ceremony were Rick and Morty, taking home their second-ever Outstanding Animated Program Emmy. Watchmen also absolutely nailed it this year, tying with The Mandalorian with seven Emmy wins (and 26 nominations!). Watchmen won the awards for Outstanding Casting For A Limited Series, Movie Or Special, Outstanding Fantasy/Sci-Fi Costumes, Outstanding Cinematography For A Limited Series Or Movie, and several others. Eddie Murphy took home his first-ever primetime Emmy award for Guest Actor in a Comedy Series after hosting SNL, 40 years after first appearing on the show.

A bizarre award ceremony, but definitely an exciting one full of highly-deserving winners. If only we could have given Baby Yoda his very own Emmy for Outstanding Everything, the 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards would have been absolutely perfect.

Star-Studded Table Read of ‘Fast Times at Ridgemont High’ Happening Tonight

Fast Times at Ridgemont High Table Read
(Youtube/Entertainment Tonight)

Though the past several months have been a new level of rough, a lot of exciting things have risen from the ashes. Our favorite places are closed, our favorite activities are postponed indefinitely – but the good news is, everyone is in the same boat. We’ve had to explore new ways of staying entertained, and at times, invent our own. Fortunately, so have our favorite celebrities, often in the form of virtual table reads and cast reunions from some extremely nostalgic movies and TV shows.

A decade after its release, the Scott Pilgrim vs. The World cast came together for a hilarious table read that brought us back to a time when finishing our popcorn too quickly was our only movie theater concern. For the ultimate nostalgia trip, Malcolm in the Middle’s cast re-read the script of their very first episode 20 years later, which felt more like a family reminiscing than some actual family reunions I’ve attended. The latest volunteers offering to take us back to simpler times are a lineup of celebrities doing a virtual table read of the quintessential coming-of-age movie, Fast Times At Ridgemont High.

Nearly 40 years ago, Fast Times At Ridgemont High took us on a journey through the unforgettable real-life experiences of writer Cameron Crowe, who adapted the movie from his book. Crowe chronicled his experiences as he went undercover as a high school student in San Diego, and brought the wide range of characters he interacted with to life once again in his classic film. We met everyone’s favorite stoner, Jeff Spicoli (played by Sean Penn), the archetypal hard-ass teacher Mr. Hand (Ray Walston), and a host of other teens just trying to come into their own without getting in too much trouble.

Now, Comedians Dane Cook and Ivan Dudynsky assembled a star-studded cast who signed on not only to give us some much-needed entertainment, but to benefit nonprofit organizations like Sean Penn’s foundation, CORE, and the REFORM Alliance – both of which help fight the spread of COVID-19. The list of celebrities taking part includes Jennifer Aniston, Brad Pitt, Jimmy Kimmel, Morgan Freeman, Shia LaBeouf, Matthew McConaughey, and Julia Roberts, and more surprises are definitely in store. The table read is part of Dane Cook’s “Feelin’A-Live” fundraiser, which will stream on September 17 at 9 pm ET on CORE’s Facebook Page. Learn it, know it, don’t miss it.