A conversation with Jacob Staudenmaier, the kid who invited Emma Stone to his high school prom
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Interview: A conversation with Jacob Staudenmaier, the kid who invited Emma Stone to his high school prom

Prepare to begin questioning the accomplishments of your own life after you read about Jacob Staudenmaier, a 17-year-old high school student…

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Prepare to begin questioning the accomplishments of your own life after you read about Jacob Staudenmaier, a 17-year-old high school student from Phoenix, Arizona who loves making and watching movies, aspires to go to film school after he graduates and recently asked Oscar-winning actress Emma Stone to his prom later this month. This kid is definitely going places.

“It only took 2 hours to film it, but it required about two weeks of intense planning on my part,” Staudenmaier told me during a late-night interview on Tuesday. He’s talking about his recreation of the opening scene of Damien Chazelle’s jazz-infused musical La La Land where he re-wrote the lyrics of Justin Hurwitz’s “Another Day of Sun” to ask the film’s star, Stone, to his upcoming high school prom. “I don’t think it was easy, but all the planning I did helped make the filming go smoothly. I really enjoyed getting to recreate that scene because it’s one of my favorites of recent memory.”

At press time, Staudenmaier’s unique prom proposal has nearly 6,000 likes and 3,000 retweets, with interview requests from major networks such as ABC and FOX pouring in by the dozens. “I did not expect the reaction would be so intense and amazing when I released the video,” he said. “La La Land was one of my favorite films of the year and I’ve always loved Emma Stone as an actress. A student at my high school had also asked Miley Cirus to prom several years back which gave me the inspiration for this, but I decided if I was doing it I needed to make it big and ambitious. I didn’t want it to just be me standing with a prom sign.”

We reached out to Stone’s reps for comment but haven’t heard back just yet. As for Staudenmaier, he has a backup plan just in case Stone doesn’t respond or, unfortunately, decides to decline the invitation. However, we’re keeping our fingers crossed that Stone, a Phoenician herself, decides to make Staudenmaier one lucky teenager.

A lover of cinema, Staudenmaier says one of his favorite films is Whiplash, Chazelle’s first big hit before La La Land made waves around the world last year with its impressive musical numbers and ensemble cast that also included Ryan Gosling, John Legend, and J.K. Simmons. “A few of my other favorite films would be Pulp Fiction, The Departed, Inception, Memento, and No Country for Old Men. I love watching anything and everything.” Staudenmaier, who loves to make films whether they are “getting lots of attention or none,” admires the work of Edgar Wright, Quentin Tarantino, Christopher Nolan, “and of course, Damien Chazelle.”

When I asked Staudenmaier for his thoughts on the Best Picture frenzy at the 89th Oscars back in February, he said that the situation was “absolutely wild” but thought both films were amazing and equally deserving of Hollywood’s top honor. “I was glad Moonlight got a little bit more attention since La La Land had received numerous other awards.”

Best of luck to you, Jacob. Here’s to hoping you make every other guy at your school jealous.

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Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson save the world in a new ‘Men in Black: International’ trailer

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Men in Black: International
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Sony Pictures has released a new trailer for Men in Black: International, the newest installment in the long-dormant franchise that originally starred Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, which now finds Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson in the lead roles.

MIB: International follows Agent H (Hemsworth) and Agent M (Thompson) as they carry out their usual duties of protecting the Earth from the alien scum of the universe. However, things become increasingly more dangerous for the pair when they’re assigned to their biggest mission yet: identifying a mole in the Men in Black organization.

In addition to Hemsworth and Thompson, the reboot also stars Liam Neeson, Rebecca Ferguson, Kumail Nanjiani, Rafe Spall, Laurent Bourgeois, Larry Bourgeois, and Emma Thompson, who reprises her role from Men in Black 3.

F. Gary Gray, who directed 2015’s Straight Outta Compton and 2017’s The Fate of the Furious, helmed MIB: International using a script written by Art Marcum and Matt Halloway, based on the Malibu Comic by Lowell Cunningham.

Men in Black franchise veterans Walter F. Parkes and Laurie MacDonald produced the film, with Steven Spielberg, E. Bennett Walsh, Riyoko Tanaka, David Beaubaire, Edward Cheng, Howard Chen, and Barry Sonnenfeld serving as executive producers.

Men in Black: International will hit theaters on June 14.

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‘Bond 25’ reveals full cast and plot details, but no title, as production begins to get underway

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Bond 25
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In a special live streamed announcement on Thursday, the team behind Bond 25, including producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli and director Cary Joji Fukunaga, revealed a number of key details about the long-awaited next chapter in the classic British spy franchise, stopping just short of the film’s title.

Fukunaga, who signed on to direct Bond 25 following the departure of Danny Boyle last year, confirmed the returning cast which, in addition to Daniel Craig in the titular role, also includes Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Rory Kinnear, Léa Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Jeffrey Wright.

As for the newcomers, Ana de Armas is set to join the cast along with Dali Benssalah, David Dencik, Lashana Lynch, Billy Magnussen, and Rami Malek, who confirmed that he will be playing the film’s main villain, adding that he promises to make sure “that Mr. Bond does not have an easy ride in this.”

The film will find Bond having left active service and enjoying a tranquil life in Jamaica. However, his peace is short-lived when his old friend Felix Leiter from the CIA turns up asking for help. The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist turns out to be far more treacherous than expected, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology.

Neal Purvis and Robert Wade wrote the screenplay for the movie along with Fukunaga, Scott Z. Burns, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge, with the latter two having taken the most recent pass at the script.

Production on Bond 25, which will commence on Sunday, April 28, will be based at Pinewood Studios in the UK and on location in London, Italy, Norway, and Jamaica, where today’s announcement took place at GoldenEye, the former home of Bond creator Ian Fleming.

“We’re thrilled to return to Jamaica with Bond 25, Daniel Craig’s fifth installment in the 007 series, where Ian Fleming created the iconic James Bond character and Dr. No and Live And Let Die were filmed,” Wilson and Broccoli said.

Bond 25 is set to be released in the U.K. on April 3, 2020 and April 8, 2020 in the U.S.

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Lili Taylor and Stefania LaVie Owen to star in the coming-of-age indie drama ‘Paper Spiders’

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Paper Spiders
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Lili Taylor and Stefania LaVie Owen have been cast as the leads in Inon Shampanier’s indie drama Paper Spiders, a bittersweet story about coming-of-age in the shadow of mental illness. The film is expected to begin production in Syracuse, New York later this month.

Written by Inon and Natalie Shampanier, Paper Spiders follows Melanie (Owen), a high school senior struggling to help her mother Dawn (Taylor), whose paranoid delusions spiral out of control.

“I am thrilled to work with these incredibly talented actresses,” Inon Shampanier said in a statement. “Lili Taylor and Stefania Owen bring great tenderness and depth to this mother-daughter story.”

Anne Clements is producing Paper Spiders for Idiot Savant Pictures along with Ash Christian for Cranium Entertainment.

Taylor, repped by APA and Untitled Entertainment, was seen most recently in last year’s The Nun, where she reprised her role from the 2013 blockbuster horror hit The Conjuring. She can be seen next in the upcoming indie The Evening Hour.

Owen is repped by McKeon/Myones Entertainment and Paradigm Talent Agency and can currently be seen onscreen starring opposite Matthew McConaughey in Harmony Korine’s stoner comedy The Beach Bum. She’ll appear next in Netflix‘s thriller The Messiah.

Inon and Natalie Shampanier, whose previous credits include 2015’s Beautiful & Twisted and 2012’s The Millionaire Tour, are repped by Chris Sablan of Avenue 220 and attorney Jacob Shapira.

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