Disney+ blocks kids from problematic movies
And Spielberg gets personal with next movie
What to know
Child profiles on Disney+ will no longer be able to access problematic films including Dumbo, Peter Pan, The Aristocats, and Swiss Family Robinson. These movies, which are preceded by content warnings over their racist content, are still accessible for adult profiles. Cue the right-wing outrage over ‘cancel culture.’ I’m down with this move by Disney as it gives parents more control over the type of things their children are watching — but wonder how they’ll handle those movies elsewhere. Peter Pan and Dumbo, for example, have very popular theme park rides.
Spielberg is set to write and direct an original movie inspired by his own childhood in Arizona, co-written by Tony Kushner and starring Michelle Williams as a character based on the director’s mother. While themes of childhood and parenthood are all over his work, this will be his first overtly biographical story. It’s supposed to shoot this summer and could be released as soon as 2022.
The BAFTAs might be the British equivalent of the Academy Awards, but I’m hoping the Oscars won’t make some of the same Best Picture omissions. Deadline claims the BAFTAs worked to be more inclusive this—and while yes, the acting categories recognized many people of color—Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Judas and the Black Messiah, and One Night in Miami are noticeably absent from the Best Film category.
Meanwhile, Chloe Zhao and Emerald Fennell just made history as the first 2 women to both be nominated for Best Director in a single year by the Director’s Guild. In its 73-year history, the guild has never had 2 women nominees.
Guardian writer Akin Olla argues that WandaVision included an ‘insidious’ propagation of the FBI. Olla explains that FBI agent Jimmy Woo’s inclusion in the series was pointless (I can agree with that) and that his inclusion only came after the suggestion of Marvel execs. Olla goes on to suggest that Wanda’s rosy depiction of the FBI is thusly suspect. It’s an interesting angle. Understanding how the military influences Hollywood is important for fans to know, but to call this propaganda seems extreme.
The hotly anticipated, once-mythic Zack Snyder cut of Justice League accidentally leaked onto HBO Max for a few hours Monday ahead of its official release March 18. Apparently if you went to watch Tom and Jerry, you got to see the Snyder cut instead. Technical glitch? Viral marketing ploy? Employee who took #ReleaseTheSnyderCut too seriously? We’ll never know.
Colbert to mark at-home anniversary with Dr. Fauci interview … my how time definitely doesn’t fly 🦠
Sony is making an animated musical about a demon-hunting K-Pop group … honestly, that sounds amazing 🇰🇷
Eddie Murphy took a break from acting after winning too many Razzies … are you happy now, Razzies!? 🎭
Disney CEO Bob Chapek stands by Gina Carano’s firing and says the company has ‘universal’ values … does that mean Universal has ‘Disney’ values? 🌎
Disney+ just crossed 100 million global subscribers … almost half way to Netflix’s total 🍿
What to watch
AMC’s Quiz has a lot going for it. It’s a fascinating behind-the-scenes dramatization of how Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? was created, it’s a gripping true crime caper about the people who tried to game the gameshow, and it’s an impressive showcase for Succession’s Matthew Macfadyen, Fleabag’s Sian Clifford, and journeyman actor Michael Sheen. But most importantly, it’s only 3 hours total. Make it your final answer.
New notables this week:
Last Chance U: Basketball (Mar 10) — Netflix sports documentary series | No RT yet
South Park vaccination special (Mar 10) — Comedy Central | No RT yet
Generation (Mar 11) — HBO Max teen drama series | 80% RT yet
Cherry (Mar 12) — Apple TV+ drama feature with Tom Holland | 39% RT
Kid 90 (Mar 12) — Hulu doc feature from Soleil Moon Frye | No RT yet
Assembled: The Making of WandaVision (Mar 12) — Disney+ doc | No RT
The Grammys (Mar 14) — Music awards show
Before you go… I’m here for whatever this is
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About the author: Alex Rabinowitz has led the way on social media and story packaging at media outlets big and small. With his acclaimed Tumblr site PopCultureBrain.com, Alex became a leading figure in emerging social networks and entertainment news. Sourced by many top destinations, including New York Magazine, BuzzFeed, and Videogum, Pop Culture Brain was featured by BuzzFeed and TIME as the best pop culture blog on Tumblr. Alex's writing has appeared on The Huffington Post, GQ.com, Mic, and Time Warner Cable.