‘Lovecraft Country’ and ‘Da Five Bloods’ star Johnathan Majors to join the MCU in Ant-Man 3

Johnathan Majors

Johnathan Majors is already having a hell of a year with his performances in Lovecraft Country and Spike Lee’s Da Five Bloods, and now he’s hopping on Marvel Cinematic Universe train.

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Not Awesome: Dame Diana Rigg has passed away at age 82

Diana Rigg

Diana Rigg passed away at home this morning at the age of 82 after a battle with cancer.

An icon of the 1960s thanks to her lead role as spy Emma Peel on The Avengers, as well as her turn as the best Bond Girl (yeah I said it) Contessa Teresa di Vicenzo, later Tracy Bond.

Over the course of her decades long career she was nominated for nine Emmys (winning one) and four Tonys (winning one), among a host of other awards and nominations., and being made Dame Commander of the British Empire in 1994 for her services to drama.

Diana Rigg
Diana Rigg

More recently she played Oleanna Tyrell in Game of Thrones, One of the most memorable characters in a show full of memorable characters.

Her presence and talent will be missed, and our thoughts are with her family.

Awesome News: The Oscars set new mandate for inclusion in Best Picture nominees

The Oscars

The Oscars have had a diversity problem for roughly forever, a trend brought to the forefront in 2016 with the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite. Recent years have seen some tremendous changes in the way we view film and television and an increase in diversity of stories and storytellers, but we still have years where a film like Green Book (a movie about racism made by and for white people) wins best picture when far more powerful films like Blackkklansman and Black Panther were on the ballot.

The Academy has now announced some steps to try to rectify this situation, which will be rolled out in 2022 and take full effect in 2024. Let’s take a closer look.

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Heads Up Vancouver: VIFF 2020 is coming!

VIFF 2020

Local film lovers rejoice, the 39th annual Vancouver International Film Festival is coming! September 24th through October 7th the biggest celebration of film in the city, and one of the biggest in North America, will once again be running.

This year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic the festival is going entirely online this year, much like the just ended Fantasia Festival. Both Simon and I have received accreditation this year so we hope to bring you all kinds of coverage, which you can keep track of using the VIFF 2020 tag here on Awesome Friday!

In order to facilitate the festival moving online, the VIFF is launching VIFF Connect, a streaming platform that will make the lineup of film available to residents of BC, and VIFF talks and conferences will be available to viewers around the world. More details on this are available on the VIFF website.

The full lineup of films is being announced this morning. Time to get excited!

As always, if you are enjoying the site and all the news and reviews we bring you, please considering becoming a patron to help us keep doing it. Support starts are just 2$/month.

Not Awesome: Chadwick Boseman has died

Chadwick Boseman

Chadwick Boseman, star of Marvel’s Black Panther, and recently Spike Lee’s Da Five Bloods, has passed away at age 43 after a four year fight with colon cancer.

This news comes as a shock that as he seemed healthy and vital, and had not shared his diagnosis publicly. Far too young to be taken so soon, if you do the math it seems like he still worked on at least six films after being diagnosed. That takes an incredible level of strength.

He was an inspiration to a generation, and already an icon. Our hearts go out to his family, friends, and fans.

Heads up: Fantasia Festival 2020 is coming!

Fantasia Fest 2020

Let’s face it: big crowds of people all in one place aren’t going to be a good idea for a while. The coronavirus has changed the way we go to the movies and it has changed the way we go to festivals.

One bright spot, if there is one at all, is that festivals going online means that they’re easier to attend. Case in point, this year I’ll be covering Fantasia Festival, Montreal’s annual festival of genre films.

There are a ton of great films on the program this year, and I am excited to start watching. There will also be some cool special events. John Carpenter will be given a lifetime achievement award, for example, and Mike Flannigan (writer-director of Doctor Sleep, and Netflix The Haunting of Hill House) giving a talk on adapting books to screen.

There’s a lot to look forward to, and with the entire festival being online this year it will be available to people across Canada.

As always, if you enjoy reading my work here please considering becoming a patron and helping me continue to do it.

Look for coverage to begin at the start of the festival, on August 20th.

92nd Academy Award Nominations are here to elate and disappoint you

Lupita Nyong'o

That’s right folks, the invitees to the big dance have been announced. Has the Academy finally learned from its past and expanded its focus to be more inclusive for people of colour? Turns out they didn’t! Did they recognize more women in the best director category? Also a no!

I love the Oscars because I am a weirdo and, honestly, this is kind of business as usual. There are a bunch of really awesome artists being recognized, but also there is some pan-fried bullshit going on here, too.

Let’s take a look at the categories and add some pithy commentary.

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Awesome News: James Bond, More Batman Casting, and more CGI doing terrible things.

Daniel Craig tells off a reporter (and rightly so), more Fantastic Beasts are coming, The Batman is potentially gaining a villain and a butler. These are just a few of this weeks stories. Let’s dive right in.

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