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Exclusive : 10 Exclusive bits about the Cobra Kai series!

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A few weeks back it was announced – much to the excitement of some ’80s tragics, this dude included – that YouTube Red had commissioned a new TV series based on John G.Avildsen’s classic series of “Karate Kid” films. Being that he still looks 21, Ralph Macchio was as confident as a hooker at a spinster’s ball to reprise his role as Daniel Larusso with ‘pop culture icon’ William Zabka (who has since spoofed his part in the 1984 film in numerous vehicles – like “Hot Tub Time Machine”) also jazzed to be back as cruel-kicking Johnny. Nice creative team behind the project too. But needless to say, the most beloved member of the “Karate Kid” family, the one we immediately think of when we hear that title, won’t be back for the series….

Broken Bonsai (1989-1990)

There’s been little to no information out there on the series, currently called “Cobra Kai”, other than the customary “We’re just so happy to be here, drinking tall fizzy drinks at the expense of YouTube…” and “with the vision of my accountant and the audio of Banamarama, we feel we can undo the injustices of the Hilary Swank one..” — well, until now.

I’ve been lucky enough to get the 411 on a couple of the first episodes of the new series – which, your Granny will be disappointed to hear, will only be accessible through “that Internet thing with the half-nekked Carsmashian girls” – and I tell you, it’s shaping up to be a blast. What sounded from the outset like a comedy is more a mix of genres – belly laughs, biffo, beauty.. and the return of some welcome fist-clenching one-on-one between the legendary adversaries of the Pepsi Generation, LaRusso and Johnny…. whatchama… him.

Spoiler Alert.

Here’s 10 things we know about the new “Cobra Kai” series :

1. Life has turned out peachy keen for Daniel (Macchio). He has a big time office job, top home, perfect family.

2. Like any good half-hour series, most of Dad’s dilemmas revolve around his kids. In this case, it’s eldest girl Samantha – who has started to date – that’s causing Daniel to sweat the most.

3. My Myiagi? Mentioned from time to time. Daniel uses his stories to spur dinner-table conversation and show off those skills he learnt back in Peter Cetera’s heyday.

4.Daniel’s friends (and, from what I can gather, ’employees’) at work, Anoush and Vic, seem to think they’re the voice of reason – particularly when it comes to parenting.

5. Johnny Lawrence, Daniel’s old foe, is down on his luck. Cleans septic tanks. Mistaken for a homeless man at one point he’s that desolate. Look at what you did Kreese!

6. Johnny’s not as out-and-out ‘mean’ now. He’s more ‘just leave me the f*ck alone” than ‘i’m going to beat up whoever is under that shower curtain’ these days. Suggesting he does have a heart under that belt, we’ll see that he does help those in need when they need a helping… kick.

7. The Valley has a new ring of bullies, notably ‘wrestler’ Kyler and his thug brothers. Naturally Johnny and his old Cobra Kai pals are ‘jokes’ to these young punks.

8. Kyler’s dating, of course, Samantha Larusso.

9. Johnny teaches local bullied convenience store clerk Miguel self defense at the newly recommissioned Cobra Kai. Over the course of the episodes, one expects it to expand in clientele and start to resemble the institution of it’s glory days.

10. Karate hasn’t got the best name in ‘the valley’ these days. Johnny in particular thinks it’s become somewhat of a joke – and become more about showponies and media personalities flexing their bits and bobs on TV – than a legitimately cool way to impress Elisabeth Shue. Part of the reason he wants to resurrect Cobra Kai, obviously

And that, I’m guessing, is only the tip of the iceberg – – something is going to give that will ultimately pit Daniel against Larusso again. And get us all listening to Cruel Summer again.

Look for “Cobra Kai” on YouTube Red in 2018.

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Exclusive : Dwayne Johnson, Atlantean!?

Mike Lowery on a possible collaboration between ‘Hobbs’ and Feige

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While he does wear a VIP lanyard at DC now, due to his lengthy involvement with the “Shazam!” franchise (he’s set to play the villainous Black Adam in a future Shazam sequel and spin-off, too), Hawaiian hulkster Dwayne Johnson is also on Marvel’s wish list – and has been for a number of years. No big surprise, right?

You may have noticed, the “Hobbs & Shaw” star took to Instagram a couple of days back to congratulate Marvel on the success they’re having, commercially and critically, with “Avengers : Endgame” – showering much of the praise on bigwig Kevin Feige. It’s a gushing – and then some – post that suggests the artist formerly known as ‘The Rock’ is indeed in good, or hopes to be, with Marvel Studios.

Something is up, right?

It sure is!

With so many Marvel productions about to gear up – expect the next phase, or part thereof, to be announced at SDCC in July – there’s undoubtedly going to be a lot of spots to fill ahead, so Feige’s been meeting with a number of A listers (rumblings of Tom Cruise wanting to collaborate with Feige too, in the future) and one of those recent meets has been with Johnson.

They’ve been talking about a number of different possibilities – the actor has his pick of the board – all of which Johnson would produce and headline.

The one gig I know about, that’s been floated Johnson’s way, is Namor!

Namor as he appeared in an episode of the “Fantastic Four” animated series.

Yep, Bill Everett’s Sub-Mariner has been taking shape over at Manhattan Beach and Johnson’s been on that go-to list for it for a while now.A snug fit too, if I don’t say so myself.

While the “Jumanji” actor had previously said “Black Adam”, over at DC/Warner, would go into production next summer the studio have yet to make any moves on it, so don’t be surprised if one of the projects Marvel want Johnson for – like the ‘Sub Mariner’ movie – comes together first.

Marvel had been looking at doing a “Sub-Mariner” movie long before, even, “Iron Man”. Back in the late ’90s, they hired Philip Kaufman to direct, and Sam Hamm (“Batman Returns”) to write the piece. That went away, just as the Universal Pictures version- which went into development in 2001 – did too. Chris Columbus was attached to direct their take at one point, as was Jonathan Mostow. These were different times, comic book movies weren’t the sure-thing successes they would seem to be today. In 2014, Marvel Studios finally got the rights back to the character from Uni (well, most of the rights – Universal still get to distribute), and have been tinkering with the film proposition ever since.


Namor, the mutant son of a human sea captain and a princess of the mythical undersea kingdom of Atlantis, has remained a historically important and popular Marvel character that regularly gets about with the Avengers, Fantastic Four and X-Men. While it’s possible the character might be introduced in a future “Avengers” movie, it’s much more likely he’ll be treated to a solo jaunt first.

Hopefully more info on the “Sub-Mariner” film plans emerge in San Diego this summer.

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Exclusive : Baz’s Elvis project shooting January

Search now underway for a fresh-faced to play young Elvis

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News from a very reliable source down under, Baz Luhrmann’s reported Elvis biopic for Warner Bros is a go, with filming due to kick off in January 2020.

While the “Moulin Rouge” and “Great Gatsby” director recently set Tom Hanks to play Colonel Tom Parker, the producing committee –  Luhrmann, Catherine Martin, and Gail Berman – are now on the hunt for a fresh-faced Elvis Presely. Casting agents have been given the heads up that the film has a a vacancy for a 19-28 year old to play the king before his famed persona.

The untitled film, which will feature a record crate’s full of Presley hits, is being penned by Luhrmann and regular collaborator Craig Pearce.

Luhrmann has a few projects on his to-do list – including a feature film take on classic series “Kung-Fu” – but seems the Elvis pic, which will tell the tale of the Memphis megastar “in typically wonderfully wild Baz tradition”, will be his next picture.

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Exclusive : Here’s the plot of Coming 2 America!

Who will replace Prince Akeem on the throne!?

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Happy Easter!

“Coming 2 America”. Big sequel. Highly anticipated. One of the few Eddie Murphy-headlined sequels they have been able to get off the ground – looking at you “Beverly Hills Cop 4”–  and rather quickly.  It’s headed towards the cameras soon, with both Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall reprising their roles from John Landis’s timeless 1988 comedy. The casting folks behind “Empire” are casting this, slotting the supports into place as we speak.

There’s little Paramount have released about the movie, only that it somehow involves a ‘son character’ – but you know what? I have more! (courtesy the same Paramount insider that tipped us off to the “Grease” prequel plans for the original leads last week) I have the plot.. and it promises to be as welcomingly humorous as it does hearty.

While in the first film Akeem had to find a wife, and bring her back to the homeland, in this one he’s out to bring his American son back to Zumanda. If the son is willing to replace him as prince, then Akeem gets to be King.

Akeem’s long-lost son LaVelle is essentially living the flip side life to his father – he’s permanently ‘trapped’ in Queens, he is broke, he is working at a burger place just to make ends meet, and his boss (Big Reem, guy that lives at home with his mom) is no McDowell. It’s on his 30th birthday that LaVelle starts to get a deeper itch to do more and be more.

He gets that wish when he discovers he’s heir to the throne of Zamunda – where the father he never knew, Akeem is a prince – and is soon about to be King. Cue the airplane!

And yes, there’s a girl – – Zamundan Mirembe, whose parents have disowned her for becoming a ‘groomer’ – – but knowing she won’t pass muster with the royals, LaVelle doesn’t initially give it a thought. LaVelle has to first stop chasing gold and stop trying to be someone he’s not (and it’s Mirembe that ends up being the voice of reason), and realize he’s already got plenty. Maybe she’s his calling… and maybe royalty isn’t? Yep, that old nugget.

A better match for the throne might be Akeem’s eldest daughter, Meeka, an intelligent born-leader whose theories (especially in relation to Akeem’s rival, General Izzi are concerned – she knows he’s up to no good, Akeem thinks otherwise) and suggestions for her future ‘King’ father are right on the money.

You can see where this is going….

Meantime,  Dave Chappelle is rumored to be reuniting with Murphy for the flick.

According to That Hashtag Show,  Murphy’s “Nutty Professor” co-star would play Baba, an old shaman from Zamunda that advises King Jaffe (James Earl Jones) and later Prince Akeem (Murphy), in the Craig Brewer-directed sequel.

Production kicks off on the film, which will also star Arsenio Hall, Shari Headley and John Amos, later this year.

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