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Watch Vin Diesel say 'I am Groot' in French, Spanish, Mandarin, and more

In this weekend’s Guardians of the Galaxy, Vin Diesel essays the role of Groot, a giant space tree. In addition to Groot’s other lovable traits, he only ever says three words: “I am Groot!”

But recording the part was no walk in the park for the Fast & Furious star. Marvel has released several videos showing how Diesel re-recorded the line in multiple languages: French, Spanish, Russian, Brazilian Portuguese. And Jimmy Fallon even tested Diesel by asking him to say the line in Mandarin. READ FULL STORY

Elijah Wood on the celeb breakup he's still not over

Elijah Wood isn’t a man who gets caught up in celebrity romances, but there is one breakup that hit him hard. The Wilfred star confessed that and more when he took our Pop Culture Personality Test. READ FULL STORY

Tom Hiddleston wrote an email to Joss Whedon and it's predictably charming

Beloved British person Tom Hiddleston has spent the last few years stealing movies from superheroes while playing trickster god/Tumblr boyfriend Loki. Although the character debuted in 2011’s Thor, he only really went Full Big Bad in 2012’s The Avengers, where he led a merry assault on the heroes of Earth and got to say the phrase “mewling quim.”

Hiddleston clearly sensed that the Avengers script was something special, writing Joss Whedon an effusive email after he read the screenplay for the first time. Business Insider published a copy of that email (excerpted from a biography of Whedon that hits stores on Friday) and Hiddleston’s joy jumps off the page. READ FULL STORY

Highlights from Daniel Radcliffe's first Comic-Con

“There are two facts that tend to amaze people,” says Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe. “That during my whole life I’ve only spent four weeks total in L.A. and that I’ve never been to Comic-Con.”

Thanks to the fantasy thriller Horns (out Oct. 31), in which he plays a young man who sprouts devilish protuberances from his head, the actor made his first appearance at the San Diego fanfest on July 25. A few moments after leaving his inaugural Hall H panel, the 25-year-old shared some of the highlights of his trip.

READ FULL STORY

How it feels to go 'Into the Storm' in the Oculus Rift

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Comic-Con trend pieces often skew toward the macro, focusing on how the various entertainment megacorporations use the annual San Diego event to carve out valuable real estate in the cultural calendar for the next two or three years. But a quick walk around the main floor inside of the Convention Center revealed a more immediate new development: Virtual Reality has arrived. Fresh off its purchase by Facebook and a buzzy line-around-the-block presence at E3, the Oculus Rift appeared in a few different places on the Comic-Con floor. READ FULL STORY

The 10 best videos from Comic-Con 2014

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Another year, another Comic-Con. The 2014 San Diego pop culture ultra-bonanza was a bit light on major “the next Superman movie is also a Batman movie”-esque reveals. But if the major studios and networks weren’t out in full force, they still showed off a significant amount of buzzworthy footage from the major projects that promise to define the next few cycles of cultural chatter. Below, the 10 best videos that made their debut during Comic-Con 2014. READ FULL STORY

'The Hobbit' Comic-Con panel is now online: The top 5 highlights

The Comic-Con panel for The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies went online today, making this Monday especially delightful for those unable to attend the madness in San Diego over the weekend. “Huzzah!” Tolkien fans everywhere shouted.

The panel saw numerous cast and crew—including Peter Jackson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Orlando Bloom, Cate Blanchett, Evangeline Lilly, Elijah Wood, and Andy Serkis—dole out trivia, make shocking confessions, and laugh with a costumed Stephen Colbert (seriously). Here are the highlights:

1. Stephen Colbert as moderator: Colbert is a J.R.R. Tolkien super-fan (see: the full Hobbit costume he wore during the panel). The late-night host admitted having reservations about Peter Jackson & Co. tackling The Lord of the Rings series, the original works in the franchise, but he ultimately loved the films. Still, he did find a flaw: “The only problem I saw was at a total of 11 1/2 hours, they were too damn short.” Throughout the panel, Colbert popped in and out, offering humorous commentary on the actors, the films, and most importantly, the narrative, which he is extremely knowledgable about, bringing us to…

2. Philippa Boyens admitting she lost a trivia contest to Colbert: Boyens, one of the writers of the series, knows her material backward and forward. Hell, she adapted the books. In a fateful trivia contest, however, she was no match for Colbert. Boyens recalled Colbert’s wife approaching her after the match, saying, “I think this is the greatest night of his life.” Colbert likened his Tolkien aptitude to being “an athlete who’s been training his entire life for a race he never knew was coming.” Jackson joked that Colbert isn’t a modest winner.

3. Peter Jackson updating fans on the Hobbit finale: Jackson began working on the first LOTR movie around 1995, meaning he’s dedicated about 20 years of his life to adapting Tolkien’s work for the screen. “It’s a commitment I’ve really enjoyed taking,” Jackson explained. That being said, the work isn’t over yet. To offer an update, the director said they’re still shooting, and are currently in the middle of filming the Battle of Five Armies. The film will hit theaters December 17.

4. Elijah Wood admitting he never read LOTR (again): Wood was met by boos from the crowd when he confessed, again, that he has never read the LOTR books. A shocked Colbert asked Wood if he knows how to read. In Wood’s defense, he had a pretty convincing explanation: “I read The Hobbit when I was a child and it was a big, big book for me. I had The Lord of the Rings on my shelf and it was one of those things that was very daunting and was kind of always there. I thought, ‘I’ll get to that one day,’ and then these movies came about. I felt like I was living it and experiencing it in such a profoundly deep way that I never really consulted the books. I imagine it’s something that I will go back to but it was such an experience over the course of such a long period of time.”

5. Andy Serkis discussing his process, progress: Serkis is one of the most versatile screen actors around, capable of manipulating technology to bring various forms to the screen. “As an actor, [technology] breaks down barriers,” Serkis explained. “Whatever you are, it doesn’t matter. You can play anything.” After playing Gollum in The Lord of the Rings, Serkis found the lead role as King Kong. “I thought my life was going to go back to normality to play normal films in a normal traditional way. The idea hit me overnight: ‘Hold on a minute: I’ve just played this three-and-a-half foot ring junkie. Now I’m going to play a 25-foot gorilla. This means typecasting is not more.'” Today, Serkis can be seen onscreen as Caesar in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, in theaters now. One more bonus: Serkis treated a delighted audience to his Gollum voice.

For the Tolkien-obsessed, check out the full panel here:

'Fifty Shades' star Jamie Dornan was a better ladykiller in 'The Fall'

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So, you like to watch a handsome, shirtless Jamie Dornan do the whole torture thing? Well, then, we’ve got the perfect drama for you—and it’s not Fifty Shades of Grey.

If you want to see Dornan gag women, tie them up, bathe them by candlelight, and cause them grievous bodily harm, you’re better off watching the first season of the BBC’s gripping thriller The Fall. (Catch up on Netflix before season two airs. The trailer premiered yesterday, just in time for 50 Shades madness.) The Fall is a suspenseful and scary thriller, and, unlike Fifty Shades, it’s honest about the slippery entertainment appeal of violence against women.

Dornan plays Paul Spector, a doting father and loving husband who also happens to be a really hot serial killer. Where the 50 Shades trailer makes sadism look aspirational—just let him hurt you, ladies, and you can have it all, the Nicholas Sparks romance, the fashion-mag clothes, and rides in fancy, phallus-shaped planes!—The Fall shows that glamorizing male sexual power over women can also be dangerous. “I was at pains from the start to make sure that there was nothing gratuitous or exploitative in the drama,” its creator, Alan Cubitt, told the Guardian last year. “Sexual killers eroticize violence, power and death, so it’s a challenging line to walk.”

Half of The Fall‘s story is told from Paul’s point of view (we’ll get to the other half in a second), and he’s definitely a voyeur. (His last name, Spector, even hints that he likes to watch.) So it’s necessary that there’s an element of voyeurism in the way the show frames his murders: The victims are young, beautiful, and often left naked on their beds. Their deaths are gorgeously shot, with romantic lighting and tasteful make-up. Paul even bathes his victims and paints their nails before he leaves them. But this isn’t the straight-forward S&M glamor that 50 Shades trades in. It’s all part of the drama’s plan to implicate its viewers in the same objectification of women that excites Paul. And that’s a fair thing to do: Viewers are tuning in to watch a show about a literal lady-killer, aren’t they? READ FULL STORY

Here's Benedict Cumberbatch with a penguin

We could tell you that Benedict Cumberbatch is making his first-ever Comic-Con appearance this week.

We could explain that he’s a voice talent in the upcoming film The Penguins of Madagascar, which comes out in November.

But none of that is actually necessary to appreciate the simplicity of this photo. It’s Benedict Cumberbatch with a penguin, and that’s pretty much everything you need to know.

We need to talk about the jeans: Dissecting the 'Fifty Shades' trailer

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Turning E. L. James’ bestseller Fifty Shades of Grey into a movie has been 50 shades of complicated, with issues ranging from trying to find the perfect Christian Grey—Matt Bomer? Charlie Hunnam?—to deciding what the film should be rated. But after a large amount of teasing (which would infuriate Christian), the first trailer for the highly anticipated film has finally arrived. Starring Dakota Johnson as Anastasia and Jamie Dornan as Christian, the trailer takes us into the couple’s first meeting, first kiss, and first, well, you know. So what do you say we dissect every inch of this trailer like we’re the dominant and it’s the submissive? (Too far?)

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