Primetime TV Review of “Pixar Popcorn”

TV Review!

"Pixar Popcorn" on Disney+

“Pixar Popcorn” on Disney+ Review by Suzanne 1/28/21

This is a cute little show that features Pixar characters you know from the movies doing fun things, such as exercising. The series is mostly wordless — probably because they’d have to pay the actors money if they were speaking.  There are only a few episodes, but they’re worth watching. Your kids will love them, too.

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The collection of 10 mini shorts features characters from Pixar favorites like “Toy Story,” “Finding Nemo,” “Cars” and “The Incredibles” in all-new, bite-size stories created by Pixar Animation Studios’ talented animators.

Grab a quick snack of Pixar! This collection of mini shorts stars your favorite characters in all-new, bite size stories. Created directly by Pixar animators as a quick pop of Pixar fun.

Trailer

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"Pixar Popcorn" on Disney+

Primetime TV Review: “Secrets of Sulphur Springs”

TV Review!

"Secrets of Sulphur Springs on Disney channel

“Secrets of Sulphur Springs” on Disney Channel Review by Suzanne 1/17/21

This is a good show. It’s aimed at kids, but I’m enjoying it.  It’s well written. It has some good mysteries. A lot of today’s “adult” mystery or horror shows are really gross and gory. This is more like what we used to see on TV, such as “The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries,” or “Murder She Wrote.” For you younger people, it’s like “Veronica Mars,” but without the sex.

The Campbell family move back to Sulphur Springs, where dad Ben (Josh Braaten) grew up. He hasn’t been there in a long time, but he was compelled to quit his job and buy a supposedly-haunted hotel, The Fremont, to fix up and re-open.  Ben doesn’t think the place is haunted, but many of the people in town do. Much of the action centers on his son, Griffin (Preston Oliver), and his new friend from school, Harper (Kyliegh Curran) as they explore the house and try to solve the mystery of what happened to Savannah (Elle Graham), who disappeared 30 years earlier. They find a lot more than a ghost. Griffin also has a mom, and a young brother and sister who are bratty twins.

Although there’s a Sulphur Springs in Texas, the series is set in a fictional town in Louisiana. The Campbell family gets a lot of warnings from the townspeople about re-opening the hotel. They don’t want Ben back in town, nor to have the hotel reopen.  If you like mysteries of “family shows,” check it out.

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DISNEY CHANNEL GREENLIGHTS LIVE-ACTION MYSTERY SERIES ‘SULPHUR SPRINGS’

Disney Channel has ordered “Sulphur Springs,” a live-action, time travel mystery series from writer and executive producer Tracey Thomson (“The Young and the Restless”). Chuck Pratt (“STAR”) will serve as showrunner and executive producer. Jennifer Phang (Freeform’s “Cloak & Dagger”) directed the pilot episode. Production is set to begin in New Orleans in 2020.

“’Sulphur Springs’ is a truly genre-bending mystery that will help re-define the types of stories we tell on our network,” said Jonas Agin, vice president, Original Series, Disney Channel. “It’s a chilling, heartfelt, funny adventure that we can’t wait for our audience to tune into.”

The 11-episode series follows 12-year-old Griffin Campbell, whose family has just uprooted their lives to move to a new town and take ownership of an abandoned hotel in hopes of restoring it back to the lively vacation destination it once was. Not long after Griffin begins his first day at a new school, he learns that the hotel he’s just moved into is rumored to be haunted by the ghost of a girl who disappeared decades ago. Along the way, Griffin befriends Harper, a bright-eyed, mystery-obsessed classmate. Together, they uncover a secret portal that allows them to travel back in time where they’ll uncover that the key to solving the mystery may lie within Griffin’s own family.

Starring are Preston Oliver (“Chicago Fire”) as Griffin, Kyliegh Curran (“Doctor Sleep”) as Harper, Elle Graham (“Swamp Thing”) as Savannah, Kelly Frye (“Criminal Minds”) as Sarah, Josh Braaten (“American Horror Story”) as Ben, Landon Gordon (Disney Channel’s “Coop & Cami Ask the World”) as Wyatt and Madeleine McGraw (“Outcast”) as Zoey.

“Sulphur Springs” is a production of Gwave Productions LLC. Chuck Pratt and Tracey Thomson’s deals were brokered by Paradigm. The deals were completed prior to the expiration of the WGA/ATA franchise agreement.
*COPYRIGHT ©2019 Disney Enterprises, Inc.

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"Secrets of Sulphur Springs on Disney channel

Primetime TV Review: “WandaVision”

TV Review!

Elizabeth Olsen (Wanda) and Paul Bettany (Vision) in "WandaVision" on Disney+

“Wanda/Vision” on Disney+ Review by Suzanne 1/16/21

This is a very weird show. The two stars of this series (Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany), and their characters, were in the Avengers’ movies as superheroes The Scarlet Witch and Vision. If you haven’t seen those films, you might not understand what’s going on. However, the rest of it is a mystery to all of us. They dropped the first two episodes today.  Clearly something strange is going on. Wanda and Vision are trapped as husband and wife in a 1950’s or 1960’s-style TV show. They know who they are, and they have their powers, but they don’t have much memory of what happened before this, or how they got there.  They did something similar in an episode of “Supernatural,” but I think this is going to turn out to be very different from that.

They do a great spoof of the old shows, like “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” “The Honeymooners,” “I Love Lucy,” and Bewitched.  I can’t wait to see more. In the first episode, Vision and Wanda can’t remember why there’s a heart on their calendar for some special day. She thinks it must be some anniversary, so she gets ready for that, with the help of her nosy-next-door neighbor, Agnes (Kathryn Hahn). Meanwhile, at his work, Vision learns that today is the day that his boss and the boss’ wife are expected for dinner. He calls Wanda to warn her, but in a typical situation comedy misunderstanding, it doesn’t help.  They have a very funny dinner, but it turns weird. In the next episode, they get involved with neighborhood watch as well as doing a magic act to raise money “for the children” (this phrase is repeated by everyone in a monotone that reminds one of a cult).

Besides the sitcom stories, Wanda and Vision get glimpses that something is not right. Vision computes figures at his job, but no one can tell him what their company actually does. Vision’s boss chokes at dinner, and his wife doesn’t act normal as he’s choking. She just keeps saying, “stop that.”  Finally, Wanda tells Vision to save him (I guess neither of them know CPR), so he uses his powers to reach into the man’s throat and take out the food that he’s choking on.  The boss and his wife don’t act like anything unusual happened.  Wanda notices some strange things going on in the second episode when a voice seems to be asking her, through a radio, what happened to her. Also, in their black-and-white world, she sees a red toy helicopter out in their bushes.  Some other strange things happen as well. I don’t want to give too much away. The second episode ended with something pretty cool happening.

What makes this show great is the chemistry between Wanda and Vision, and their comic timing; the production’s attention to detail also makes it work.  Since they’re in a sitcom, it is funny – funnier than the actual shows were back then.  There’s always an edge to what they’re saying, though, because everything is just a little off.

What we’re dying to know is how they got there and where they are. Are they in Wanda’s head? Is Vision dead (since he died in the movies)? Has he come back to life, or did this happen in the past, before he died? Are the other people really people?  Of course, the big question is: who’s behind this?

I look forward to the rest of the episodes….there are only 9 this season. If you like superheroes, or good fantasy, you should definitely check this out.

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Marvel Studios presents “WandaVision,” a blend of classic television and the Marvel Cinematic Universe in which Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany) – two super-powered beings living idealized suburban lives – begin to suspect that everything is not as it seems. The new series is directed by Matt Shakman; Jac Schaeffer is head writer.

Fact Sheet: Synopsis:Marvel Studios presents “WandaVision,” The new series debuts exclusively on Disney+ beginning January 15, 2021.Title:“WandaVision”Category:Original live-action series U.S. Premiere:January 15, 2021Cast:Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Kathryn Hahn, Teyonah Parris, Kat Dennings, Randall Park Directed by:Matt Shakman Head Writer:Jac SchaefferProduction Company:Marvel StudiosSocial Media:Twitter: @WandaVision, @DisneyPlusFacebook: @WandaVisionOfficial, @DisneyPlusInstagram: @MarvelStudios, @DisneyPlusHashtag:#WandaVision, #DisneyPlus

Production Info:

PRODUCTION BRIEF

 

Marvel Studios presents “WandaVision,” a blend of classic television and the Marvel Cinematic Universe in which Wanda Maximoff and Vision—two super-powered beings living idealized suburban lives—begin to suspect that everything is not as it seems. “‘WandaVision’ will be the very first Marvel Studios series on Disney+,” says Kevin Feige, president, Marvel Studios and chief creative officer, Marvel. “Wanda and Vision are two of our most powerful and complex heroes, and this series is a perfect expansion point for MCU storytelling.”

The series not only marks the first Marvel Studios’ Disney+ series, it is its first journey into the world of sitcoms—with an MCU twist. “It’s a mash-up of classic sitcoms and large-scale Marvel action,” says Matt Shakman, who directs all nine episodes. “I think it’s really lovely that the first streaming show from Marvel Studios—producer of huge blockbuster films—is really a love letter to the history of television.”

According to head writer Jac Schaeffer, “WandaVision” is funny, mysterious and action- packed. “It picks up shortly after ‘Avengers: Endgame,’” she says. “Marvel fans have never seen Wanda and Vision in this way before. Their storyline has been so romantic and tragic—fans have really latched onto it. But really, it’s been precious little screen time, and it’s all been very fraught. In this show, we get to see them in a domestic light, and it gets to breathe. It’s really beautiful.

“In the first episode we meet Wanda and Vision after they’ve just been married,” continues Schaeffer. “They’re driving into this new town with ‘just married’ on the back of their cute little car. It’s 1950s, black and white, they’re absolutely adorable. They’re madly in love, and there is not a hint of the Avengers or the larger MCU. We see them going about their day, making breakfast. She’s a witch, he’s synthezoid. She can dry dishes in the air. He can change density and walk through things.”

Says Shakman, “Wanda and Vision are just starting their married life together in this new town, and they’re meeting their neighbors. Vision’s starting to work at his new job while Wanda navigates life at home. They’re concerned about hiding their powers from their new friends and neighbors, and when they’re pushed for more information about where they came from, they’re stumped. That’s when we start to realize that things are not quite what they seem.”

With nine episodes, the series was created much like a motion picture would be—but more extensive, allowing first-of-its-kind exploration of the relationship between Wanda and Vision. Says co-executive producer Mary Livanos, “Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany have the opportunity to flex different muscles over the course of this series that usually an actor wouldn’t get to do within the scope of a single project.”

Olsen, who has portrayed Wanda since the character’s post-credits debut in Marvel Studios’ 2014 feature film “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” returns to her signature role—taking it in a curious new direction. “Paul and I get to discover at a much deeper level who these characters are,” she says. “Wanda and Vision have always had an unspoken and inherent connection since ‘Ultron.’ “The infinity stone is such a huge part of their intrinsic connection and understanding of one another. I think just like any great love story, there is a strong energy that attracts both of them to one another. In ‘WandaVision,’ we watch them experience a domesticated lifestyle for the first time, or as domesticated as possible for them. We watch them experience the joys and complications of parenting, while also overcoming secrecy and distrust, but always coming together in the end with the common bond, respect and unconditional love for one another.”

Bettany, whose voice made his debut in the MCU as J.A.R.V.I.S. in “Iron Man,” first appeared on screen as Vision in “Avengers: Age of Ultron.” The actor says he first heard about “WandaVision” during a visit to Marvel Studios. “I went in, and much to my surprise, they pitched this idea for a show that is an homage to American sitcoms,” he says. “It’s a beautiful little puzzle box that you begin to open. As mad and chaotic as the trailer looks, everything has a reason. There are layers upon layers.”

“WandaVision” stars Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff, Paul Bettany as Vision, Teyonah Parris as Monica Rambeau, who was introduced to audiences in “Captain Marvel,” and Kathryn Hahn as Agnes, the nosy neighbor. Randall Park will reprise his role as Jimmy Woo from “Ant-Man and The Wasp,” and Kat Dennings will reprise her role as Darcy from “Thor” and “Thor: The Dark World.”

The series is directed by Matt Shakman (“Game of Thrones,” “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”) with Jac Schaeffer (“The Hustle,” “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure”) as head writer. Executive producers are Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Shakman and Schaeffer, and co-executive producers are Mary Livanos and Trevor Waterson. Jess Hall, ASC, is director of photography, Mark Worthington is production designer, Mayes C. Rubeo is costume designer and Tara DeMarco is VFX supervisor. Composer is Christophe Beck, and theme (for certain episodes) is by Kristen Anderson- Lopez and Robert Lopez. “WandaVision” debuts on Disney+ on Jan. 15, 2021.

SITCOM SAVVY

Filmmakers, Cast and Crew Go Back in Time to Capture Classic Sitcom Style

 

Marvel Studios’ foray into the world of the sitcom celebrates the genre in a big way. “The story imagines Wanda and Vision in a 1950s sitcom—when the show opens, that’s presented without explanation,” says head writer Jac Schaeffer, who also contributed to the story of Marvel Studios’ upcoming “Black Widow.” “We see them move thorough the various eras of sitcoms as the series progresses.”

Director Matt Shakman, Primetime Emmy® nominee for his work on “The Great,” came to the production with a unique background, having starred in shows like “Just the Ten of Us” and “Webster” as a child. “It was a unique challenge for me because I did spend my entire childhood as an actor around sitcoms,” he says. “I grew up on sitcom stages and backlots, and so this was a real trip down memory lane.”

The classic-sitcom approach offered exciting opportunities for humor and levity, but filmmakers were very serious about getting the genre right. Says Shakman, “It was really important to us from the get-go that we weren’t parodying sitcoms. We studied tone and style from era to era. We wanted to make sure the actors were really fluent in all of these different styles. So, we had a sitcom bootcamp with the cast before we began. We watched old episodes and we tried on different styles to figure out the physicality and the sound for each era.”

According to Elizabeth Olsen, there was a lot to learn. “Matt led us through a sitcom crash course,” she says. “We watched episodes from the specific shows we wanted to reference in each decade. And as I would any period piece, I worked on the vocal changes as well as the physical manners of the periods. There is also a really amazing arc in sitcoms throughout the decades that is a tug-o-war between earnestness and cynicism. I loved how Jac Schaeffer used these tonal shifts from decade to decade to directly affect Wanda’s emotional journey.”

Cast and crew studied classic sitcoms from the 1950s through the 2000s. “We wanted to make sure that what we were creating was absolutely faithful to the original touchstone shows,” says Shakman. “To that end, we watched lots of episodes, read books about the making of those shows, and interviewed, whenever possible, people who had actually worked on those shows.

“I went to lunch with the great Dick Van Dyke and Kevin Feige before we started production on ‘WandaVision,’” Shakman continues. “That was a lovely experience and a great way to hear how they approached production on his show, which was inspiration for our first episode.”

LIVE STUDIO AUDIENCE

To achieve the desired authenticity, filmmakers decided to shoot the first episode in front of a live studio audience. The effort not only conjured genuine laughter, harkening back to classic sitcoms, it affected the performances. Says Shakman, “It’s amazing when you put actors in front of a live audience, how much that material jumps when the adrenaline, the excitement, the communication is happening between the actor and the audience. It elevates the material, and it becomes much more like a play. That was a huge part of what we captured in episode one—that spark, that kind of lightening in a bottle.”

Paul Bettany most definitely felt that spark. “You can’t help yourself when there are people there—you want them to hear it and laugh at it. It makes it all a little bigger. And that, I think, captured the style of the ’50s. It was a brilliant decision.

“I was really nervous,” Bettany continues. “We rehearsed it very thoroughly, and every member of the crew was dressed in [1950s] costumes. Everybody really got into the spirit of it. And then the audience came in, and we just went for it. We jumped into the abyss. I just loved it. I should’ve been on a sitcom all these years.”

TO BE CONTINUED…

As the episodes progress, so do the sitcom eras, which required a fresh approach with each episode—including production design, costumes, cinematography and performances. “There aren’t many opportunities as an actor to explore as many genres and tones as we do in this series,” says Olsen. “It was as much of a challenge as it was a joy. This Marvel story could only ever be told through the medium of television and that’s what makes it such a special piece of the MCU.”

WELCOME TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD

MCU Veterans Wanda and Vision Join New Characters

In Marvel Studios’ “WandaVision,” two of the MCU’s most intriguing characters are joined by other favorites, plus new characters—some of whom will go on to appear in future features. Together with the filmmakers, the cast weaved together a mysterious and mesmerizing story. “They were all extraordinary, and they were all fabulous to work with,” says director Matt Shakman of the cast. “Lizzie and Paul are just absolute gems, and I can’t wait for people to see what they’re capable of. They changed tone and style sometimes three or four times a day—from these heartbreaking, dramatic scenes to these incredibly goofy, comedic scenes—and they pulled off everything so brilliantly.

They took huge risks, and they never shied away from a challenge. They set the tone for everybody.”

“They’re both such funny actors,” adds head writer Jac Schaeffer. “The physical comedy is really great, and they’ve been studying the classic shows with the nuanced performance styles. They’ve had to be like Swiss Army knife performers.”

WHO’S WHO IN “WANDAVISION”

WANDA MAXIMOFF and Vision say goodbye to city strife, and settle into a quiet suburban life in their new hometown of Westview. Try as Wanda may to fit in and conceal her powers from neighbors, merry domestic mishaps call this magical maven to action! With a magical wiggle of her fingers, is there anything she can’t do, or conflict she can’t resolve?

According to director Matt Shakman, in terms of the MCU timeline, Wanda has just helped to defeat Thanos. “The world just keeps putting up obstacles for her, and she has all of this untapped power that she doesn’t fully understand,” says Shakman. “Her journey for this show is to come into her own. She’s an incredibly powerful figure who’s been manipulated and used over the years. This is her opportunity to rediscover herself, and at the same time, it’s a brilliant love story.”

Elizabeth Olsen steps into the character’s shoes once again, bringing with her six years of experience. “I think more than anything, this show created an opportunity to expand upon what makes Wanda Wanda,” says Olsen. “She is a deep-feeling person, yet in this show she tries to push that part of herself aside. So, it was more of a journey of allowing Wanda to break through the sitcom facade and accept the woman she is and the life she has led.”

Head writer Jac Schaeffer says Wanda has a simple desire. “What she wants more than anything is to live happily with her husband in this community and to make friends and to be a part of the community.”

VISION lives happily alongside his wife Wanda Maximoff in the quiet suburb of Westview. Like Wanda, Vision endeavors to keep his powers under wraps, but the superpowered synthezoid has been known to slip. Though this domestic version of Vision is unlike any seen before, he remains as keenly aware of his unique existence as ever.

Paul Bettany once again portrays Vision, who seems to have traded in his super responsibilities for a decidedly human gig. “He finds himself fully formed and in the 1950s,” says Bettany. “His daily life is a nine-to-five, briefcase-hat-and-suit job.”

Shakman says Vision is one of the MCU’s most compelling characters. “Vision is this AI who is half human and half robot,” says Shakman. “And yet, he’s more human than any of us.”

Bettany agrees. “Even from his days as J.A.R.V.I.S., he’s always been becoming,” Bettany says. “Vision was born this omnipotent, naïve android, which is a weird combination, and he has always been growing and becoming—trying to understand what makes humans human, trying to understand love. This definitely feels like a culmination of that journey—an ending in some ways, and frankly, a new beginning.”

MONICA RAMBEAU, the daughter of Carol Danver’s best friend Maria, has always been like a niece to Carol who liked to call her “Lieutenant Trouble.” At age 11, Monica helped Carol choose the colors for the suit she’d ultimately wear as Captain Marvel.

Today, Monica is all grown up, destined for her own adventures, obstacles, setbacks and discoveries.

Teyonah Parris portrays Monica. “I am a huge Marvel fan,” she says. “I first connected with Marvel after seeing ‘Iron Man’ for the first time. My current favorite title is ‘Captain Marvel’—my character’s origin! That film was great fun and amplified girl power.”

Parris, who will appear as Monica Rambeau in the upcoming feature “Captain Marvel 2,” adds that filming the complex series has been a great introduction to the MCU. “There are a lot of moving parts to this production,” she says. “It feels like we are making something epic—and there are moments that are a nod to the amazing, iconic television shows from our past. The energy on set has been incredible—from the cast to the crew. It’s clear that we are making something special.”

AGNES is the brassy, nosy neighbor of Wanda and Vision. She’s well-versed in all things suburban, happily giving Wanda a leg up in navigating the social pressures of Westview. A beloved extended member of the family, Agnes is never far away.

“Every sitcom needs a nosy neighbor character,” says Schaeffer. “Agnes is fabulous and brassy and hilarious. She invites herself over and wants to know everything about Wanda. Of course, Wanda doesn’t have the answers to any of the questions, but she’s very charming in deflecting them. It’s all in good fun and Wanda is relieved and excited to have a friend and an ally in this new town.”

Kathryn Hahn expertly fills Agnes’ shoes, embracing the sitcom approach, the MCU and everything else. “It could not be more fun and delicious,” she says. “The fact that I get to do all of this – with these actors, with Matt [Shakman], and play with all of these different characters – it’s a crazy dream that this is my way into this world. It’s bananas. And now with my kids, maybe I will have a little bit of cred! Not much yet, because I’m still a big old nerd to them, but maybe I will be a little bit cooler in their eyes after this comes out.”

“Kathryn Hahn can do anything,” says Shakman. “She is a brilliant comedian and a phenomenal dramatic actor. Having her skillset there to go along with Paul, Lizzie and Teyonah Parris—they are an exceptional ensemble.”

DARCY LEWIS and JIMMY WOO are an integral part of the complicated and mysterious story of “WandaVision.” According to Shakman, Darcy has come a long way since she was last seen in “Thor: The Dark World.” “She’s gone on to become Dr. Darcy Lewis now,” he says. “So, she’s a real expert in her field.”

Joining Darcy in her latest quest is Jimmy Woo, who’s the same diligent agent seen in “Ant-Man and The Wasp.” “They have a mystery to solve,” says Schaeffer. “They have so many questions and no answers.”

Kat Dennings and Randall Park reprise their roles as Darcy Lewis and Jimmy Woo, respectively.

GETTING THE RIGHT LOOK

Cinematography, Production Design, Costume Design and Visual Effects Work Together to Achieve Authenticity from Era to Era

 

“WandaVision” not only channels classic sitcoms, it aspired to capture specific eras throughout the series—which meant a fresh approach to each episode when it came to cinematography, production design, costume design and visual effects.

CINEMATOGRAPHY

“The approach in essence was to study and absorb the references of each period, to distill their technical and aesthetic choices and then to selectively apply and to filter these within our own stylistic sensibility,” says director of photography Jess Hall, ASC. “The objective is to create images that were in a sense truly post-modern, not simply an homage to the past. This is what the complex narrative of ‘WandaVision’ demanded.”

Hall utilized 47 different lenses to create seven different periods—many custom modified to render specific period characteristics. “For the 1950s, I tested lenses of the actual period and then modified modern lenses to selectively render the characteristics that I liked—it was never a case of simply copying what had been done before.”

In terms of lighting, Hall utilized a carefully crafted lighting style, as well as lighting instruments that were period appropriate. “This meant delving deep into the archives of several studio equipment houses to source equipment that has become almost obsolete,” he says. “The 1950-1970s episodes are shot almost entirely with period tungsten lighting. LED lighting doesn’t make an appearance until the later episodes that are situated in the 2000s, which is in the correct time line for when this equipment entered the filmmaking vocabulary.”

Hall also studied and incorporated specific composition and camera movement to convey the various periods, adopting specific camera approaches to episodes, depending on what the period’s sitcoms tended to utilize. “However,” he says, “I like to think that ‘WandaVision’ has a unique quality and that in a certain sense its look is original, a visual synthesis that has transcended the cut and mix.”

PRODUCTION DESIGN

“What’s really interesting was the fact that we’re not just dealing with the different eras—it’s a sitcom,” says production designer Mark Worthington. “So, what does that mean? The visual language and vocabulary of a sitcom are actually really specific and it changes radically between decades. ‘I Love Lucy’ had really simple little apartments that looked like theater sets. When you get to ‘The Dick Van Dyke Show,’ you’re starting to get really interesting period references and a little fun, modern design comes into it. ‘The Brady Bunch’ has ’70s wild beautiful colors.”

According to Worthington, the idea of setting the story within traditionally lighthearted sitcoms adds to the mystery. “What interested me about this story was that dichotomy, because these sitcoms are not just these fluffy things,” he says. “They imply a much darker idea. It’s really beautiful.”

Worthington also had to consider the series’ evolution from black-and-white to color.

“Half of film history is in black and white,” he says. “So, reentering this space has been interesting because we’ve discovered some stuff about how colors work in a black-and- white space.”

COSTUME DESIGN

Costume designer Mayes C. Rubeo ensured the cast wardrobe enhanced the authenticity of each episode. “It is rare to find a story that arcs through so many decades, without the characters aging,” she says. “Jac [Schaeffer]’s concept of the story, and the brilliant way that Matt directed each episode made the work so exciting.”

Rubeo says she has favorite costumes from every episode. “The suit Vision wears and the wedding dress we made for Wanda for the opening titles were my favorite creations from that episode,” she says. “They were both made from scratch, and Paul loved the suit and tie so much he was sad it couldn’t be used for the whole episode. Wanda’s dress was a beautiful homage to Audrey Hepburn.”

As the series segued from black and white to color, Rubeo collaborated with the director of photography and production designer to ensure they achieved the perfect overall look. She describes the first three episodes as “particularly stunning,” including a psychedelic 1970s print dress for Wanda in the third episode.

“I think part of the wonder of this show is the strong and fast change between eras and broadcasting styles,” says Rubeo. “The sets, hair, make-up and costumes, as well as the photography, set the scene beautifully.”

VISUAL EFFECTS

According to VFX supervisor Tara DeMarco, filmmakers studied practical effects and early days visual effects of television and film from each era. For the first three episodes, says DeMarco, “we used puppeteered props, practical film cuts and rewind effects.”

While filmmakers leaned into the effects used during the era that inspired the episodes—technology that improved incrementally with each era—they enhanced the look using today’s tools. “We used contemporary technology to help remove the wires and smooth the cuts,” says DeMarco, “but many of the effects were shot in-camera. We occasionally used CG to bolster the storytelling in a beat where we were missing a wire gag. For example, Wanda’s kitchen in the first episode is a blend of practical puppeteered floating objects and CG ones created later to fill out the scene.”

“WANDAVISION” SITCOM STYLE TO INCLUDE ORIGINAL THEME SONGS

Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez Behind Original Theme Songs with Original Score by Christophe Beck

“WandaVision” filmmakers’ research and detailed examinations of sitcoms throughout television history yielded a common thread: theme songs. The nature and style of the songs changed over the years—creating almost a calling card for each era. This signature enhanced the authenticity sought for “WandaVision” and its roots in classic sitcoms. Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez created unique theme songs for episodes spanning from the 1950s to the early 2000s, while Christophe Beck composed the score for the series.

ORIGINAL SONGS

“‘WandaVision’ is such a cool, strange, one-of-a-kind project,” says Lopez. “When the director, Matt Shakman—an old friend from my college days—pitched it to us, we didn’t have to think about it. We loved the bright feeling of American sitcoms mixed with the deep sense of unease the story had, and it was a really inviting challenge to help set that tone. We also really related as a couple to the feeling of chaos Wanda and Vision go through—trying to maintain a loving, happy family through an unyielding and constantly growing onslaught of problems.”

Adds Anderson-Lopez, “I grew up in the ’80s watching shows from every decade on the networks all day long. Episodes from ‘I Love Lucy,’ ‘Brady Bunch’ and ‘Family Ties’ shaped who I am and how I move through the world.”

Indeed, both consider themselves “total TV addicts as kids,” so they had already done much of the research in terms of creating identifiable themes for each era represented. The next step in their process was to find a way to tie the themes together. Says Lopez, “One thing we decided to do before writing anything was find a motif that would unify all the songs, since there were so many different styles and tunes. We found a four-note theme that would be kind of like the ‘WandaVision’ call-out, easily identifiable in some way in each song, that had to work with every style. Once we had that, everything flowed. It was honestly some of the most fun we’ve ever had.”

For the first episode, says Anderson-Lopez, they wanted to evoke the dawn of television. “We wanted to have an optimistic group of voices singing jazzily—though not too jazzily—about the love between these two, and the main question of the first episode, whether two Avengers in love can pass for normal in a typical American suburb,” she says. “It was a great chance to use words like ‘gal’ and ‘hubby’ that we just don’t throw into modern songs anymore. We knew there would be a moment where Vision, carrying Wanda across the threshold, forgot to open the door and just phased through the wall, unexpectedly dropping her, so we put a big musical pratfall in the middle of the piece. It was fun to see how the team executed it.”

ORIGINAL SCORE

Christophe Beck was called on to compose unique scores for all nine episodes. “For each era, the music is a loving homage to the sitcom scores typical of the time period,” says Beck. “This involved not only the instrumentation, but also the composition style. My team and I had enormous fun exploring these styles!

“It was also exciting to find ways to connect the scores together even as they span the stylistic variety across all the episodes,” continues Beck. “Wanda and Vision have a love theme that I was able to weave in and out within the context of all the different sitcom styles, for example.”

According to Beck, the score features instruments that were typical of the era being represented in a given episode. Early episodes feature small orchestral ensembles, while later episodes embrace a rock-pop style. Beck also utilized period-specific recording and mixing techniques to achieve the authenticity filmmakers wanted.

Beck adds that the length of the cues changed with the eras. “As the series progresses through the decades, the music becomes more pervasive.”

ABOUT THE TALENT

 

ELIZABETH OLSEN (Wanda Maximoff) is a vivacious and engaging young actress, a graduate from New York University’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts, and a recipient of Hollywood Rising Star Award at the 41st Annual Deauville Film Festival in 2015.

Olsen starred in and executive produced the dark-comedy series “Sorry For Your Loss” on Facebook Watch. She starred as a young widow who’s dealing with the grief of losing her husband while reconnecting with relationships of her past. Olsen’s performance earned her a Critics Choice Award nomination for best actress in a drama series. The series wrapped its second and final season on Oct. 1, 2019.

Olsen reprises her role as Wanda Maximoff in Marvel Studios’ “WandaVision,” starring alongside Paul Bettany, who reprises his role as Vision. The series debuts Jan. 15, 2021, on Disney+. Olsen returns as Wanda in “Doctor Strange In The Multiverse of Madness,” which opens in theaters March 25, 2022.

Olsen resurrected her character Wanda Maximoff in Marvel Studios’ “Avengers: Endgame” alongside Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Paul

Bettany, Brie Larson and Anthony Mackie. The globally anticipated continuation opened in theaters on April 26, 2019, and has grossed almost $3 billion. To date, the film has earned nearly $3 billion in the worldwide box office. Olsen originally appeared as Wanda in 2015’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron” and subsequently appeared in “Captain

America: Civil War” in 2016.

In 2018, Olsen starred in “Kodachome” opposite Ed Harris and Jason Sudeikis. The film is set during the final days of the still-photo development system known as Kodachrome. The ticking clock to get the rolls of film developed is the backdrop for a father-and-son bonding trip as they try to reach the Kansas photo lab before it closes its doors for good. “Kodachome,” which was acquired by Netflix during the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival, was released on the streaming platform in April 2018.

In 2017, Olsen starred in “Wind River” opposite her Avengers co-star, Jeremy Renner. The film, written and directed by Taylor Sheridan, centers on a murder on the Wind River Indian Reservation. That same year, Olsen starred in the dark comedy “Ingrid Goes West,” alongside Aubrey Plaza, Wyatt Russell and O’Shea Jackson Jr. The Matt Spicer-directed film follows Ingrid Thorburn (Plaza) who becomes obsessed with Taylor Sloane (Olsen), a social media influencer with a seemingly perfect life in Los Angeles. “Ingrid Goes West” was nominated for a 2018 Film Independent Spirit Award for best first screenplay and best first feature.

In 2016, Olsen appeared in the Hank Williams biopic titled “I Saw the Light” as Audrey Mae Williams, opposite Tom Hiddleston. The Sony Pictures Classics film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival on Sept. 11, 2015, opening in theaters in March 2016. In 2014, Olsen appeared in the Warner Brothers and Legendary Pictures reboot of “Godzilla,” opposite Aaron-Taylor Johnson and Bryan Cranston.

In 2013, Olsen starred in the Spike Lee-directed film “Oldboy” with Samuel L. Jackson and Josh Brolin. The film centers around an everyday man that has only five days and limited resources to discover why he was imprisoned in a nondescript room for 15 years without any explanation. Olsen also appeared in the film “In Secret,” opposite Jessica Lange and Oscar Issacs, which opened in Feb. 2013. That same year, Olsen helped kick off the Classic Stage Company’s Fall 2013-2014 season as the lead role, Juliet, in the Off Broadway play “Romeo and Juliet.” Olsen also starred in “Very Good Girls,” opposite Dakota Fanning, which premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. The Naomi Foner-directed film is about two New York City girls that make a pact to lose their virginity during their first summer out of high school. Olsen had two previous films premiere at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival: “Liberal Arts” with Josh Radnor, John Magaro, Zac Efron and Richard Jenkins, and “Red Lights” opposite Robert DeNiro, Cillian Murphy and Sigourney Weaver.

In spring of 2012 Olsen starred in the independent film “Silent House” from Open Road Films. The film is the re-imagining of the successful Uruguayan psychological horror- thriller “La Casa Muda.” In 2011 Olsen received a Gotham Award, Critics Choice and Independent Spirit Award nomination for lead actress for her performance in Fox

Searchlight’s “Martha Marcy May Marlene.” The film is a drama that follows a young woman who is living with her older sister after escaping a cult. Olsen stars opposite Hugh Dancy, John Hawkes, Sarah Paulson and Brady Corbet. Martha Marcy May Marlene” was also selected in the Un Certain Regard as part of the 2011 Cannes Film Festival. She has been nominated for her performance from the following critic associations: St. Louis, Las Vegas, Houston, FIND Spirit, San Diego, IPA and Detroit. She won best actress from the Indiana Critics Association.

Olsen understudied both on the Off Broadway play “Dust” and the Broadway play “Impressionism” while attending New York University. Other workshops include “Bottom of the World” by Lucy Thurber (Atlantic Theatre Company), and “The Living Newspaper” (DRD Theatricals). Olsen has had formal training at Atlantic Acting School and Moscow Art Theatre School.

Olsen serves as a board member of The Latitude Project, which builds solutions to help alleviate the stresses of poverty in ways that engage and empower people from roofs to clean water and healthcare to education. On June 9, 2018, the Environmental Media Association (EMA) honored Olsen with the EMA Futures Award for her work with The Latitude Project. Since 1989, the Environmental Media Association (EMA) has been using its voice to effect change and honoring excelling and role modeling in entertainment, media, technology and business. The organization works to educate the public about water issues, energy solutions, animal protection and conscious consumption for lifestyle choices. The EMA Futures Award is given to young and emerging advocates for the environment. Olsen also is a dedicated volunteer at the Stuart House: Rape Treatment Center, which provides expert comprehensive services for victims of rape, sexual assault, and child sexual abuse, including specialized medical care, forensic services, crisis counseling and longer-term psychotherapy, advocacy, and other forms of support. The center also provides prevention education programs, professional training for law enforcement personnel, medical personnel and school personnel, and advocacy for needed policy rape, sexual assault and child sexual abuse, including specialized medical care, forensic services, crisis counseling and longer-term psychotherapy, advocacy and other forms of support.

PAUL BETTANY (Vision) reprises his role as Vision in the Disney+ series “WandaVision,” debuting on January 15, 2021. Previously, he starred as Vision in the films “Captain America: Civil War,” “The Avengers: Age of Ultron” and “Avengers: Infinity War.”

He was most recently seen in the film “Uncle Frank” for writer/director Alan Ball which premiered at Sundance and sold to Amazon Studios. It was released on Amazon Prime on Nov. 25, 2020.

Bettany was classically trained at the Drama Centre in London. He made his stage debut in a West End production of “An Inspector Calls” under the direction of Stephen Daldry.

Bettany was nominated for a British Independent Film Award and a London Film Critic’s Award for best newcomer in IFC’s “Gangster No. 1,” directed by Paul McGuigan. He went on to star in Brian Helgeland’s film “A Knight’s Tale” opposite Heath Ledger.

Bettany also starred in the Academy Award®-winning film “A Beautiful Mind,” and Fox’s “Master & Commander: The Far Side of the World” for director Peter Weir for which he won an Evening Standard Award for best British actor, the London Film Critic’s Award for best supporting actor and Elle Style Award for best actor. His nominations also include a BAFTA for best supporting actor and a Broadcast Film Critics Association nomination for best supporting actor.

Other credits include the Academy Award-nominated film “Margin Call,” the British films “Journey’s End” and “Blood,” the action films “The DaVinci Code,” “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” “Legion and Priest,” and the avant-garde film “Dogville.”

In television, Bettany starred as Ted Kaczynski in “Manhunt: Unabomber” where critics and audiences heralded his performance.

He made his directorial debut with the film “Shelter” starring Jennifer Connelly.

TEYONAH PARRIS (Monica Rambeau) has established herself as a versatile actress who continues to capture attention on stage and screen. She will star opposite John Boyega and Jamie Foxx in the Netflix sci-fi feature film “They Cloned Tyrone.” The film, which will mark the directorial debut of “Creed 2” scribe Juel Taylor, follows a series of events that thrusts an unlikely trio (Boyega, Foxx, Parris) onto the trail of a nefarious government conspiracy.

On January 15, 2021, global audiences will see Parris join the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the iconic character Monica Rambeau in the highly anticipated Disney+ original series “WandaVision” opposite Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany.  Next August, Parris will star opposite Yahya Abdul-Mateen II in the contemporary take on the cult horror classic “Candyman.” The film, directed by Nia DaCosta and written by Oscar® winner Jordan Peele, is scheduled to be released in theaters by Universal Pictures on August 27, 2021.

Parris was recently seen in the HBO Max film “Charm City Kings” alongside Meek Mill, which had its world premiere at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival and won the Special Jury Prize for ensemble acting. Based on the documentary “12 O’Clock Boys,” the film adaptation was originally written by Barry Jenkins, with rewrites from Sherman Payne.

Parris gave a memorable performance in Annapurna’s “If Beale Street Could Talk,” directed by Academy Award®-winner Barry Jenkins(“Moonlight”). The film, adapted from the successful James Baldwin novel, explored the life and challenges faced by a young couple in Harlem. “If Beale Street Could Talk,” which first premiered at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival and screened at the 2018 New York Film Festival, was nominated for a Golden Globe® Award for best motion picture drama, and was also honored by AFI as one of their movies of the year.

In 2014, Parris starred opposite Tessa Thompson in Justin Simien’s breakout independent film “Dear White People.” Her performance earned her a Black Reel Award in the category of outstanding breakthrough performance. That next year, Parris was cast as the lead role in Spike Lee’s “Chi-Raq,” for which she won the Black Reel and African-American Film Critics Association Awards for best actress, and also garnered an NAACP Image Award nomination. Parris then went on to appear as real-life singer Miki Howard in the Christine Swanson-directed telefilm “Love Under New Management: The Miki Howard Story,” in which she also served as a producer. Other film credits include “How Do You Know,” “Point Blank” and “The Photograph.”

On television, Parris recurred opposite Jon Hamm on AMC Network’s critically acclaimed television series “Mad Men,” and remained with the show throughout its final four seasons. In 2013, Parris and her fellow “Mad Men” actors earned a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination for outstanding performance by an ensemble in a drama series. From 2014-2017, Parris also starred on the acclaimed television series “Survivor’s Remorse” for its entire four-season run on Starz.

On stage, Parris made her Broadway debut in John Guare’s play “A Free Man of Color” alongside Jeffrey Wright and Mos Def. The play, directed by George C. Wolfe, played at the Vivian Beaumont Theater. In 2019, Parris originated the role of Kaneisha in the Off-Broadway production of Jeremy O. Harris’ much-buzzed about production of “Slave Play.”

Parris is a graduate of the prestigious Juilliard School in New York City.

KATHRYN HAHN (Agnes) will be seen in “WandaVision,” alongside Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany, portraying the nosy neighbor Agnes. The series is a blend of classic television and the Marvel Cinematic Universe in which two super-powered beings living idealized suburban lives begin to suspect that everything is not as it seems. It is set to debut on Disney+ on January 15.

Hahn is in production in Apple TV+’s “The Shrink Next Door,” alongside Paul Rudd and Will Ferrell. The limited series is based on the true story of a psychiatrist-patient dynamic that morphs into an exploitative relationship filled with manipulation, power grabs and dysfunction. Hahn portrays Phyllis, the younger sister to Martin Markowitz (Ferrell) who is the patient of Dr. Isaac Herschkopf (Rudd).

Recently, Hahn was seen in the HBO limited series “I Know This Much is True,” in which she co-stars with Mark Ruffalo, Melissa Leo, Rosie O’Donnell, Archie Panjabi, Imogen Poots and Juliette Lewis. The series depicts a family saga that follows the parallel lives of identical twin brothers in a story of betrayal, sacrifice and forgiveness set against the backdrop of 20th-century America, based on the best-selling novel of the same name by Wally Lamb.

Film credits include Tamara Jenkins’ “Private Life,” for which she received a Gotham Independent Film Award nomination; Phil Johnston and Rich Moore’s “Spider Man: Into the Spider-Verse”; Genndy Tartakovsky’s “Hotel Transylvannia 3: Summer Vacation”; ”Max Winkler’s “Flower”; Jon Lucas and Scott Moore’s “A Bad Moms Christmas” and “Bad Moms”; Matt Ross’ “Captain Fantastic” opposite Viggo Mortensen; Steven Brill’s “The Do-Over” alongside Adam Sandler and David Spade; Peter Bogdanovich’s “She’s Funny That Way,” alongside Imogen Poots, Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston; M. Night Shyamalan’s “The Visit”; Jarrad Paul and Andrew Mogel’s “The D Train”; Brad Bird’s “Tomorrowland” opposite George Clooney; as well as Shawn Levy’s “This is Where I Leave You.” Additional credits include Jason Bateman’s “Bad Words,” Ben Stiller’s “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” starring and directed by Ben Stiller, and Rawson Marshall Thurber’s “We’re the Millers” with Jennifer Aniston and Jason Sudeikis.

Hahn also starred in Jill Soloway’s “Afternoon Delight,” which premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and garnered her a 2013 breakthrough actor Gotham Award nomination. Other feature film credits include David Wain’s “Wanderlust,” Jesse Peretz’s “Our Idiot Brother,” James Brooks’ “How Do You Know,” Neal Brennan’s “The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard,” Sam Mendes’ Revolutionary Road,” Adam McKay’s “Step Brothers,” Robert Shaye’s “The Last Mimzy,” Nancy Meyers’ “The Holiday,” as well as Adam McKay’s “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.”

On television, Hahn was recently seen in the Tom Perrotta created HBO series “Mrs. Fletcher,” Matthew Weiner’s anthology “The Romanoffs” with Jay R. Ferguson, Annet Mahendru and Clea Duvall, and Jill Soloway’s “I Love Dick” opposite Kevin Bacon.

Additionally, Hahn co-starred in season three of the Emmy®-nominated Amazon original series “Transparent” created by Jill Soloway. For her portrayal of Raquel Fein, Hahn received a 2017 Emmy Award nomination for outstanding supporting actress in a comedy series. Additional television credits include Showtime’s dark comedy “Happyish” opposite Steve Coogan. Hahn had a guest-starring arc on the NBC hit show “Parks and Recreation,” as well as HBO’s “Newsroom” and “Girls.” Her previous roles include NBC’s “Crossing Jordan,” “Four Kings,” “Hung” and “Free Agents.” Hahn also has lent her voice to the Apple TV+ animated series “Central Park,” FX’s “Chozen,” and Fox’s “Bob’s Burgers” and “American Dad!”

Hahn made her Broadway debut in the Tony®-winning play “Boeing-Boeing,” alongside Bradley Whitford, Gina Gershon, Mary McCormack, Christine Baranski and Mark Rylance. “Boeing-Boeing” won the 2008 Tony in the category of best revival of a play. Additional theatre credits include “Dead End” at the Ahmanson Theater and Huntington Theater Company, “Ten Unknowns” at Huntington Theater Company, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Chaucer in Rome” and “Camino Real” at Williamstown Mainstage, and “Hedda Gabler” at Williamstown/Baystreet.

Hahn received her Bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University and her Masters in Fine Arts from Yale School of Drama.

ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS

 

MATT SHAKMAN (Director/Executive Producer) just finished directing and executive producing Marvel Studios’ “WandaVision,” starring Elizabeth Olson and Paul Bettany.

He previously wrapped the MRC/Hulu pilot “The Great,” starring Nicholas Hoult and Elle Fanning, for which he received an Emmy® nomination for outstanding directing for a comedy series, and directed an episode for the second season of HBO’s “Succession.” His two episodes from season seven of “Game of Thrones,” “The Spoils of War” (DGA nomination) and “Eastwatch,” received some of the best reviews of the entire series.

Last year, Shakman directed episodes of “The Boys” for Amazon and “Billions” for Showtime.

Shakman’s directorial credits also include the feature film “Cut Bank” for A24 (Toronto International Film Festival premiere), as well as many episodes of TV’s best shows including “Mad Men,” “The Good Wife,” and the season one finale of “Fargo” on

  1. Shakman also served as the series director and executive producer on “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.” He was tapped to adapt his iconic episode “The Nightman Cometh” for the stage which resulted in a sold-out national tour. Shakman is also the artistic director of the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles.

JAC SCHAEFFER (Head Writer/Executive Producer/Created for Television By) is the head writer and an executive producer for Marvel Studios’ “WandaVision,” which kicks off on Disney+ on Jan. 15, 2021.

Schaeffer launched her career in 2009 as writer/director/producer of the feature film “TiMER.” She wrote the screenplay for Walt Disney Animation Studios’ 2017 featurette “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure,” and 2019’s “The Hustle,” which starred Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson. Schaeffer also contributed to the story for Marvel Studios’ upcoming feature film “Black Widow,” starring Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff.

Cinematographer JESS HALL (Director of Photography) demonstrates a versatility to move effortlessly between genres bringing his unique eye to a diverse range of projects, incorporating a multiplicity of cinematic styles. From his naturalistic palette and poetic minimal shot structure much celebrated on James Ponsoldt’s Sundance Special Jury Prize winner “The Spectacular Now” to the kinetic pace of Edgar Wright’s cult classic action comedy “Hot Fuzz.” Hall’s images charm, resonate and exhilarate with equal measure.

Hall received a Satellite Award Nomination for his cinematography on “Brideshead Revisited.” His 2017 live-action rendering of the anime classic “Ghost In The Shell” employed many innovative technical strategies, combining 65mm large format digital cinematography, state-of-the-art LED lighting technology, custom-built lenses and the first 24 FPS Photogrammetry capture rig to be used on a live-action feature film. Hall’s use of advanced LED lighting to achieve the precise rendering of the complex secondary anime color palette was honored in the reception of the HPA award for best color grading on a feature film.

In addition to his long-form work, Hall has continued to shoot award-winning commercials, including multiple Cannes Gold Lion winners and Silver D&AD pencils for cinematography. In 2020, Hall received the AICP award for best cinematography on “Smirnoff Infamous Since 1864.” The project also saw Hall’s work receive another award in the color grading category, cementing his reputation as an artist who has dexterously navigated the color science required to produce images of luxurious color depth in the digital format.

Hall collaborated with the Academy Award®-winning documentarian Kevin Macdonald on his film “Marley” and Academy Award-winning writer/director Stephen Knight on his latest film “Serenity.” Hall is a member of The American Society of Cinematographers, The British Society of Cinematographers and The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

MARK WORTHINGTON (Production Designer) counts among his designs for television include five seasons of “American Horror Story,” the pilot of “Lost,” four seasons of ABC’s “Ugly Betty” and the pilot for “Once Upon a Time,” “Political Animals” for TNT, and the pilot for “Star Trek: Discovery,” the return of the franchise to its original home on television. Worthington’s credits also include the pilot for “The Umbrella Academy” for Netflix, the pilot for Damon Lindelof’s adaptation of “Watchmen” for HBO, and the first season of the CBS All Access series “Why Women Kill.”

Worthington has also worked in feature film as an art director on such projects as “Tombstone,” “The Chamber,” “Wag the Dog,” “Hearts in Atlantis,” “Austin Powers in Goldmember,” and “Legally Blonde 2.”

Worthington has received nine nominations from the Art Director’s Guild for excellence in production design for television, winning the award five times; he has received eight Emmy® nominations.

Worthington holds a BA in Theatre from Reed College and an MFA in Scene Design from the Carnegie Mellon University School of Drama.

MAYES C. RUBEO (Costume Designer) adds Marvel Studios’ “WandaVision” to her roster of projects in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which include 2017’s “Thor: Ragnarok” and the upcoming feature film “Thor: Love and Thunder, which opens on May 6, 2022. She is also known for her work on “Jojo Rabbit” (2019), for which she was nominated for an Oscar® and a BAFTA Award, as well “Apocalypto” (2006), “Avatar” (2009), “The Great Wall” (2016), “Warcraft: The Beginning” (2016), “World War Z” (2013) and “John Carter” (2012).

Rubeo was born in Mexico City and went on to train in fashion and costume at the Los Angeles Trade-Tech College (LATTC) and UCLA. In a design career spanning two decades, Rubeo has collaborated with visionary directors such as Mel Gibson and Zhang Yimou, leading studios such as Legendary and Marvel, and with screen stars including Cate Blanchett, Ruth Negga, Brad Pitt and Andy Lau. Rubeo’s early collaborations laid the foundations for a career that has demanded great versatility: she began work as an assistant costume designer and costume supervisor, gaining experience with designers Shay Cunliffe, Erica Edell Phillips, Ellen Mirojnick and Enrico Sabbatini, the latter becoming her career mentor.

After assisting Shay Cunliffe on “Lone Star” (1996), Rubeo continued to work with the same independent director-producer team John Sayles and Maggie Renzi, designing costumes for “Men with Guns” (1997), “Sunshine State” (2002), and “Casa de los Babys” (2003). For Hallmark’s movie “Saga Fidel” (2002), Mayes met the challenge of costuming to tell a story which spanned seven decades. But it was Rubeo’s collaboration with Mel Gibson on “Apocalypto” (2006), for which she delivered a powerful image of the lost Mayan civilization, that set her on the path to creating the look of the otherworldly at an epic scale. Since then, she has been known for creating the visual identities of the Na’vi people in James Cameron’s “Avatar” (2009), bringing to life Edgar Rice Burroughs’s 100-year-old vision of civilized Mars in Andrew Stanton’s “John Carter” (2012), and for transforming some of the world’s most popular video game and comic book characters into reality on-screen with Duncan Jones’ “Warcraft” (2016) and Taika Waititi’s “Thor: Ragnarok” (2017). Mayes put her energies back into gritty realism in 2013 for Marc Forster’s “World War Z” (2013), costuming thousands of people (living and un-dead) on a global scale.

Rubeo continues to bring her costumes into new territories, turning technological and technical challenges into creative opportunities. Her passion and collaborative spirit have enabled her to successfully lead diverse teams across five continents, merging traditional craft skills with state-of-the-art technology.

Rubeo received nominations from the Costume Designer’s Guild for her work on “Fidel,” “Avatar,” “Thor: Ragnarok” and “Jojo Rabbit,” the latter also earning her a WIN Costume Designers Guild award for excellence in period film. Rubeo’s work has been featured in international exhibitions, including the Deborah Nadoolman Landis curated exhibition Hollywood Costume (2012) at the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A) in London. Three FIDM Exhibitions: 18th Annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design for the film “Apocalypto,” 21st Annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design for the film “John Carter,” and the 26th Annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design for the film “Thor: Ragnarok.” Rubeo is a member of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, the Costume Designers Guild of America and the Scenic Arts Guild.

TARA DEMARCO (Visual Effects Supervisor) is an award-winning VFX supervisor known for her cutting-edge work as a flame artist. Her 18-year career in visual effects is grounded in high-end commercial work, having composited on Emmy, Cannes Lion, and DA&D award-winning work. Through a 14-year run at The Mill as well as freelancing with several other studios (Method, Brickyard, Psyop), DeMarco has made her mark as compositor and VFX supervisor. She has worked on classic music videos like The White Stripes “The Denial Twist,” as well as Brian Buckley’s Sundance contender “The Bronze.” Her long career in commercial work was supporting the visions of brands like Old Spice, Geico, Nike, Pepsi, Gatorade, Doritos, Xbox, and Apple, for commercials that have aired at the Super Bowl, the World Cup, the Olympics, as well as the Oscars and Emmys.

DeMarco began her career by studying Fine Art Photography and Interrelated Media at Massachusetts College of Art in Boston. It was there that she discovered a passion for visual effects, and the seamless blending of created images with the footage captured in camera.

Award-winning composer CHRISTOPHE BECK (Composer) has a career that bridges genres and garners well-deserved acclaim. Beck displays his range from scoring Marvel Studios’ action-adventure “Ant-Man” to Fox’s film adaptation of Charles Schulz’s beloved comic strip “Peanuts.” Recent projects include “Like a Boss,” “Walkaway Joe,” “The Christmas Chronicles: Part Two,” and “Free Guy,” which is slated for release this year.

The prolific composer scored the Oscar® and GRAMMY®-winning animated film “Frozen” (the soundtrack album has sold over 3 million copies), and “Frozen 2”—whose soundtrack beat the “Frozen” record for most weeks at #1 on Billboard’s Soundtrack Charts at 45 non-consecutive weeks. Beck’s recent credits also include the documentary “Watson,” “The Christmas Chronicles” for Netflix, and Marvel Studios’ “Ant-Man and the Wasp.” He is the musical voice of iconic comedies of the last decade,

including: “The Hangover,” “American Pie,” “Hot Tub Time Machine” and “Pitch Perfect”; poignant films, including “Cake,” starring Jennifer Anniston, and the true-life-based drama “We Are Marshall”; documentaries including “Red Army” and the award-winning “Waiting for Superman”; rom-coms, including “Under the Tuscan Sun” and “Crazy,

Stupid, Love”; along with action films, including “Year of the Dog” and “Edge of Tomorrow,” the sci-fi thriller directed by Doug Liman, starring Tom Cruise and Emily

Blunt, as well as the drama/crime film “American Made.” Beck’s breakthrough success came by composing music for the TV series “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” for which he earned an Emmy®.

Beck is unique in his versatile ability to develop the tone in any genre. His music combines a masterful use of complex dynamics to create tension and convey a vast spectrum of emotion. Beck’s scores add depth, intrigue, humor and sentiment, and his music contributes powerfully to the aesthetic of each film he scores.

Beck began playing piano at age 5. He then studied music at Yale and attended the USC film-scoring program under the tutelage of legendary composer Jerry Goldsmith. He began composing in television at the personal recommendation of Disney music legend Buddy Baker.

KRISTEN ANDERSON-LOPEZ and ROBERT LOPEZ (Episode-Specific Theme Songs by) are the Oscar®- and Grammy®-award winning, married songwriting team behind Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “Frozen 2.” They wrote the songs for original “Frozen,” for which they won the Oscar for best original song for “Let it Go.” They also wrote the Oscar-winning song “Remember Me” from Disney and Pixar’s “Coco,” and adapted “Frozen” for the Broadway stage. Their original song “Into the Unknown” from Disney’s 2019 feature film “Frozen 2” was also nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe®.

Lopez co-conceived and co-wrote the hit musicals “Avenue Q” and “The Book of Mormon,” both earning him Tony® Awards. Anderson-Lopez’s show “In Transit” made history as the first all a cappella musical to run on Broadway, after earning recognition at the Drama Desk, Drama League and Lucille Lortel Awards for its Off-Broadway run. Lopez and Anderson-Lopez have written for television, film and stage, including “Finding Nemo: The Musical,” songs for “The Wonder Pets” (two Emmy® Award wins) and the “Winnie the Pooh” animated film. Their original musical “Up Here” premiered at the La Jolla Playhouse.

Graduates of Yale University and Williams College, respectively, Lopez and Anderson- Lopez now reside in Brooklyn, NY, with their two daughters.

KEY CREDITS

 

DIRECTOR: Matt Shakman
HEAD WRITER/CREATED FOR TELEVISION BY: Jac Schaeffer
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Matt Shakman, Jac Schaeffer
CO-EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Mary Livanos, Trevor Waterson
LINE PRODUCER: Mary Kane
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER: Jason Tamez
EPISODE-SPECIFIC EDITORS: Tim Roche, Nona Khodai, Zene Baker
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: Jess Hall, ASC
PRODUCTION DESIGNER: Mark Worthington
COSTUME DESIGNER: Mayes C. Rubeo
VFX SUPERVISOR: Tara DeMarco
VFX PRODUCER: James Alexander
COMPOSER: Christophe Beck
EPISODE-SPECIFIC THEMES BY: Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
MUSIC SUPERVISOR: Dave Jordan
CASTING BY: Sarah Halley Finn, CSA / Jason B. Stamey, CSA
MAIN CAST (not all cast in all episodes): Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Teyonah Parris, Kathryn Hahn, Randall Park, Kat Dennings

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Elizabeth Olsen (Wanda) and Paul Bettany (Vision) in "WandaVision" on Disney+

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TV Review!

"Marvel Studios: Legends" on Disney+

“Marvel Studios: Legends” on Disney+ Review by Suzanne 1/9/21

This series showcases other upcoming Marvel series’ on the Disney+ channel. The first two episodes, which were released this week, focus on Wanda (The Scarlet Witch) and Vision from The Avengers movies. They have a new series starting soon. Each of these episodes use many clips from the movies to remind you who they are and what they’ve been through, to prepare you for the series. I enjoyed them.

Besides reminding me of their story, I enjoyed seeing the other Avengers characters, especially Black Panther and Iron Man. It makes me want to watch all the Marvel movies again (which I’m sure is what they intended). If you haven’t seen any or all of the Marvel movies, then these two episodes will fill you in a bit about them before the new series starts. I can’t wait for the new series. I assume that “Legends” will also cover similar material for the new series’ featuring Falcon and Bucky, Loki, Hawkeye and more.

MORE INFORMATION:

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is expanding with the start of Phase Four! In addition to the arrival of Marvel Studios’ WandaVision on Disney+ on January 15, 2021, a new ongoing series will dive deeper into the stories of the MCU’s most compelling characters.

Coming exclusively to Disney+, Marvel Studios: Legends is a new series that will showcase individual characters viewers have come to know and love over the years and revisit some of their most iconic moments. Marvel Studios: Legends kicks off by highlighting Wanda Maximoff and Vision, the two stars of WandaVision, and their interconnected path across the MCU that led them both here.

The first two episodes of Marvel Studios: Legends, featuring Wanda and Vision, premiere on January 8, 2021, only on Disney+.

MARVEL STUDIOS: LEGENDS

As the Marvel Cinematic Universe continues to expand, Marvel Studios: Legends celebrates and codifies what has come before. Revisit the epic heroes, villains and moments from across the MCU in preparation for the highly anticipated stories still to come. Each dynamic segment feeds directly into the upcoming series premiering on Disney+ — setting the stage for future events. Marvel Studios: Legends weaves together the many threads that constitute the unparalleled Marvel Cinematic Universe.

WANDA MAXIMOFF

Wanda Maximoff made her debut in Avengers: Age of Ultron as a powerful adversary of The Avengers, only to become an even more powerful ally. Wanda found strength in herself and in her extraordinary relationship with one highly unique individual, Vision. Marvel Studios: Legends explores Wanda’s story as she grapples with cruel hardships and loss, a chaotic power that she strives to control, and shifting loyalties from those she trusts most.

VISION

Born into the world in Avengers: Age of Ultron Vision chooses to fight on the side of humanity, though he himself is an artificial form of life. Marvel Studios: Legends follows Vision on his quest to understand humans more fully, evolving to be more like them, as he explores a romantic relationship with Wanda Maximoff in Captain America: Civil War. All of this leads to his final moments, as he makes the ultimate sacrifice for mankind, leaving those he loved to an uncertain future.

Want more exciting information about Phase 4? Find the latest Marvel Cinematic Universe news right here — and stay tuned for more!

This is just the beginning of the Phase 4 news. Stay tuned to Marvel.com for more details! And be sure to follow Marvel on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Looking for more Marvel movies and shows to stream? Check out everything on Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+ right here, and where to find all your favorite Super Heroes right here. Sign up for Disney+ and start streaming now!

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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The opinions in these articles are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The TV MegaSite or its other volunteers.

"Marvel Studios: Legends" on Disney+

Article: TV Shows Worthy of Bingeing on Disney+

TV Article!

Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian

Guest Post by Zeeshan Lalani 10/1/20

                            BINGE WATCHING WORTHY TV SHOWS ON DISNEY PLUS

This fall, Disney+ has plans to remedy its greatest weakness: the lack of binge-worthy live action series that audiences over age 12 will enjoy.

To be sure, the family-friendly streaming service has several series that work well in small doses: “Rogue Trip”, “Disney Gallery: The Mandalorian”, “Brain Games”, “Encore”, “Cosmos”, “Shop Class”, and “America’s Funniest Home Videos” come to mind. Disney+ also has dozens of bingeable animated shows, and laugh-track Disney Channel entries amuse some pre-teens.

However, competitors Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Max, and Peacock all have 20 to 40 or more must-see TV series that aren’t cartoons. Later this fall, Disney+ will add National Geographic’s big-budget limited series “The Right Stuff,” along with ABC’s “Dinosaurs,” (4 seasons) and, hopefully, a new Marvel Studios series or two. However, one of the problems one can face is not being able to watch Disney Plus from outside the U.S. because it is only available in specific countries.  For that, one would need a VPN for Disney Plus.

For now, here’s our list of 7 quality live action series with wide appeal…

1 The Mandalorian (Season 2 Coming in October)

This $100 million Western-style space opera has maintained Disney+ trends since its production, from director Jon Favreau (Iron Man) and executive producer Dave Filoni (Star Wars: The Clone Wars). Set after the collapse of the Monarchy and before the advent of the First World, The Mandalorian follows the tribulations of a solitary gunfighter in the far reaches of the cosmos who becomes The Child’s guardian (known to fans as “Baby Yoda”) far from the nascent Republic’s jurisdiction.

  1. Agent Carter (2 Seasons)

Peace has dealt a significant blow to Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) when she finds herself oppressed as the men return home from fighting abroad throughout World War II. Working for the clandestine S.S.R. (Strategic Scientific Reserve), a forerunner of S.H.I.E.L.D., Peggy needs to balance administrative duties and go on classified missions for Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper). In the aftermath of losing the love of her life, Captain America AKA Steve Rogers, she navigates life as a female secret agent. This series also shines a light on the conclusion of the film Avengers: Endgame, which is linked closely to the Captain America films.

  1. Once Upon A Time (7 Seasons)

“Once Upon a Time” shows a reality where the stories of fairy tales and every-day real life clash. In her life as a bail bondswoman, Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison) is doing well when Henry (Jared S. Gilmore) unexpectedly turns up — the boy she gave up a decade ago. He claims she is the daughter of Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) and Prince Charming (Josh Dallas), who spirited her away before a spell could be cast by the Wicked Queen (Lana Parrilla), freezing the realm of fairytales in time and taking them to today’s Storybrooke, Maine. Something about the story intrigues Emma, so she humors the boy and decides to take him back to his family in Maine. Captain Hook, Belle, Jiminy Cricket, Pinocchio, Peter Pan, and many more reimagined Disney characters appear in the show’s 7 seasons.  All 7 seasons arrive on September 18 for U.S. Disney+ subscribers.

  1. The Imagineering Story (Limited Series)

This 6-part series of documentaries explores Walt Disney Imagineering’s history, present, and future with the noted filmmaker Leslie Iwerks. Thanks to the Disney ties of her family — her grandfather was an early Disney animator and her father was a former Imagineer— Iwerks offers viewers an all-access pass to how Disney’s groundbreaking theme park attractions are made… including a few errors and low points that have taken place over the decades.

  1. Boy Meets World (7 Seasons)

“Boy Meets World” elevates the classic sitcom format of producers Michael Jacobs and April Kelly with writing and performances that deepen as the program progresses. It chronicles the ups and downs of Cory Matthews (Ben Savage), his best friend Shawn (Rider Strong), girlfriend Topanga (Danielle Fishel), brother Eric (Will Friedle), and the lessons they learn from their coach, George Feeney (William Daniels), one of the few ABC series on Disney+. In later seasons, the characters face more serious problems as they try to balance college with relationship troubles and serious issues like divorce and grief. For 3 seasons of Girl Meets World, also on Disney+, Disney Channel carried back some of the characters.

  1. Prop Culture (1 Season)

Prop Society goes behind the scenes of favorite films such as Mary Poppins, The Muppet Movie, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, and The Narnia Chronicles: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe in eight half-hour episodes. Host and prop curator Dan Lanigan recovers lost movie items, tours private collections and helps return parts to their former glory from the Walt Disney Archives. Lanigan has indicated plans for a second season, but Disney+ hasn’t revealed it yet. “To get a second season, you have to watch the first season! ” Lanigan said in March.

  1. Hostile Planet (Limited Series)

This six-part documentary series draws attention to the most remarkable stories of animals who have responded to the most inhuman genetic curveballs, which seem almost mystical. With Planet Earth and other high-end nature shows, and an immersive look at the wilds of nature, the cinematography and pace of this show is on par.

We spoke with many entertainment editors and critics, and they all mentioned the above listed series or shows as best. In fact, the editor from StreamingRant told us, “Hostile Planet is my personal favorite, and I consider it the best Nat Geo show on Disney+.”

These seven shows on Disney+ are worth watching, but you can only watch them from certain regions, due to geo-restrictions. However, VPNs can give you a way around those. VPNs are one way to bypass geo-restrictions and to watch some amazing content, great stories and perfect plots from some super amazing content creators and filmmakers. Please be careful, though, because some VPN use can get you into trouble.

Proofread and Edited by Suzanne

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Once Upon a Time cast