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The 'Aquaman' stand-alone film is off and swimming!

Filmmaker James Wan celebrated the start of production on his next film, Warner Bros.' superhero epic Aquaman, by sharing a photo from the set.

"Months of intensive prep have led to this. Here we go. #DayOne #Ahab," the director of Insidious and The Conjuring wrote on Twitter Tuesday alongside a photo of what appears to be the inside of a submarine.

Aquaman, which stars Jason Momoa in the title role after appearing briefly as the King of Atlantis in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, will be shooting on location in Australia.

The star-studded cast also includes Amber Heard as royal love interest Mera, Patrick Wilson as Aquaman's half-brother Orm, also known as the villainous Ocean Master, Willem Dafoe as Aquaman's adviser, Dr. Vulko, Nicole Kidman as Aquaman's mother and Get Down star Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as signature antagonist Black Manta.

Dolph Lundgren recently signed onto the project to play King Nereus of the aquatic kingdom of Xebel who wants to kill Aquaman and claim Mera as his own.

Momoa will next be seen as the underwater hero alongside Batman (Ben Affleck), Superman (Henry Cavill), Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), The Flash (Ezra Miller) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher) in Justice League, due in theaters Nov. 17.

Any Aquaman fans out there?

Be Well,
Steve


Comments? Questions? Nooz? Email Steve



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Writers Guild of America reaches deal, avoids strike
Writers Guild of America reaches deal, avoids strike
The Writers Guild of America on Tuesday said it has reached a tentative agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, avoiding a strike just as its most current contract expired.

The guild's negotiating committee said it is recommending the deal for ratification by WGA members.

"The Writers Guilds of America, West and East and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers have concluded negotiations and have reached a tentative agreement on terms for a new three-year collective bargaining agreement," the WGA and the AMPTP said in a joint statement to The Hollywood Reporter early Tuesday morning.

Last month, 96 percent of the guild's voting members authorized a strike against Hollywood's film and television production companies, meaning a work stoppage could have begun Tuesday if negotiations had not been successful.

"In [the deal], we made gains in minimums across the board -- as well as contribution increases to our health plan that should ensure its solvency for years to come. And we further expanded our protections in options and exclusivity," the WGA negotiating committee said in a letter to its members.

"We also made unprecedented gains on the issue of short seasons in television, winning a definition [which has never before existed in our (minimum basic agreement)] of 2.4 weeks of work for each episodic fee. Any work beyond that span will now require additional payment for hundreds of writer-producers. We won a 15 percent increase in Pay TV residuals, roughly $15 million in increases in high-budget [subscription video on demand] residuals, and, for the first time ever, residuals for comedy-variety writers in Pay TV. And, also for the first time ever, job protection on parental leave."

The guild last went on strike for 100 days in 2007-08.


Jimmy Kimmel recounts son's harrowing heart crisis after birth
Jimmy Kimmel announced the birth of his son Billy on Jimmy Kimmel Live! but quickly dissolved into tears as he described the baby's health crisis.

"I try not to get emotional, but it was a scary story and before I go into it, I want you to know it has a happy ending," Kimmel said, struggling to control his emotions in a monologue that was posted to Facebook early Tuesday. "So, when I am telling you this, don't get too upset. Leave that to me."

The comedian then went on to say his wife, Molly, gave birth to their second child on April 21 after an "easy delivery -- six pushes and he was out." At first, the boy appeared to be "a normal, healthy baby."

However, three hours later, while he and his wife were introducing Billy to his family, a Cedars-Sinai nurse suspected something was wrong with the newborn's color and heartbeat.

Kimmel went on to describe the "terrifying" experience of watching doctors, nurses and technicians trying to figure out what was wrong with his baby, then save his life after determining he had a blocked pulmonary valve and a hole between the two sides of his heart.

The baby was transported by ambulance to Children's Hospital of Los Angeles, where he underwent open-heart surgery.

"This poor kid," Kimmel went on showing a photo of his youngest child attached to numerous tubes and monitors.

"But this is what he looked like yesterday when we brought him home," Kimmel said, revealing another picture of Billy wearing a hat and smiling. "Poor kid. Not only did he get a bad heart, but he got my face."

Kimmel praised the hospitals and thanked by name all of the medical staff who helped Billy. He also acknowledged his family, friends and co-workers who offered their prayers, love and support during this difficult time.

"I hate saying it, but even that son of a [expletive] Matt Damon sent flowers," he joked about the actor with whom he has had a long-running, comic rivalry.

Kimmel also urged viewers to donate money to Children's Hospital.


LOOSE LIPS:
"I don't take pictures with people because that's not about enjoying the moment. It's about stealing the moment to brag about later."
--Chris Pratt, explaining his anti-selfie stance, to Cigar Aficionado



??? Guess Who ???

Which stars were the latest to be eliminated from Season 24 of 'Dancing with Stars'?


Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey face off in first 'Dark Tower' trailer
It's good versus evil in the first trailer for Columbia Pictures' upcoming adaptation of Stephen King's Dark Tower series starring Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey.

The clip, released Wednesday, features 11-year-old Jake Chambers (Tom Taylor) discovering a world beyond our own, which features a Dark Tower that holds the universe together.

Chambers meets the last Gunslinger, Roland Deschain (Idris Elba), who is protecting the tower from the villainous Man in Black, Walter Padick (McConaughey), who is described as "worse" than the devil.

As Deschain and Chambers travel together, they visit Earth and fight to stop Padick from destroying both worlds.

"I do not kill with my gun, I kill with my heart," Elba is heard saying as his gunslinging skills are put on display.

"Jake Chambers (Taylor) is a young 11-year-old adventure seeker who discovers clues about another dimension called Mid-World," reads the synopsis.

"Upon following the mystery, he is spirited away to Mid-World where he encounters the lone frontiersman knight Roland Deschain (Elba), who is on a quest to reach the Dark Tower that resides in End-World and reach the nexus point between time and space that he hopes will save Mid-World from extinction. But with various monsters and a vicious sorcerer named Walter Padick (McConaughey) hot on their trail, the unlikely duo find that their quest may be difficult to complete."

Directed by Nikolaj Arcel, The Dark Tower is set to arrive in theaters Aug. 4 after it was pushed back from its original July 28 opening date.


Jam band legend Bruce Hampton dies after collapsing on stage
In the end, Bruce Hampton was doing what he loved most -- jamming -- when he collapsed and died during an encore at his 70th birthday celebration concert Monday night in Atlanta.

"I've dreaded this day for years," former bandmate Jeff Mosier wrote on Facebook, "but could have never imagined a more joyful departure."

Hampton, known as the granddaddy of the jam scene, toppled over while jamming during the encore -- Bobby Bland's "Turn on Your Love Light."

At first, the other performers on stage thought it was another of Hampton's quirky stunts. Drummer Jeff Sipe said Hampton made eye contact with him and grinned moments before he went down.

Hampton's death was confirmed in a statement from his family, shared by the Tedeschi Trucks Band.

Several rock and jam band luminaries performed at the four-hour show, including Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi, John Popper, Oliver Wood, Dave Schools, Chuck Leavell and guitar prodigy Brandon Niederauer

Born Gustav Berglund III in Knoxville, Tenn., in 1947, he changed his name to Col. Bruce Hampton as an adult and forged a music career that spanned five decades. He started with Frank Zappa & the Mothers of Invention and formed the Hampton Grease Band, which toured with The Grateful Dead. They released only one album, "Music to Eat" in 1971, but it became a cult classic.

Hampton earned a reputation as one of the best jam musicians in the industry. He was the subject of a 2012 documentary, "Basically Frightened: The Musical Madness of Colonel Bruce Hampton."

He was mourned by fans and friends.

"I feel so blessed to have been there (Monday night) and be a part of the greatest gathering of friends and loved ones," Mosier wrote on Facebook. "I've never seen Bruce happier. I've never been sadder. ... I feel so lost."


??? Guess Who ???

Which stars were the latest to be eliminated from Season 24 of 'Dancing with Stars'?

Nancy Kerrigan and Nick Viall, along with their professional partners, were eliminated from Season 24 of Dancing with the Stars Monday night.

"The whole experience has been amazing," said Kerrigan, the champion ice skater who had been paired with Artem Chigvintsev.

"It's been incredible," added Viall, a former Bachelor star whose DWTS partner was Peta Murgatroyd.

Still in the running for the coveted mirror-ball trophy are model and professional bull rider Bonner Bolton, pro football player Rashad Jennings, retired baseball player David Ross, Fifth Harmony member Normani Kodei and Olympic gymnast Simone Biles.

Glee alum Heather Morris, reality TV personality Erika Jayne, 1980s icon Mr. T, comedian Chris Kattan and entertainer Charo were previously booted from the competition this season.

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