Anticipation has been building in all of geekdom since The Big Bang Theory producers announced in March that nerd icon Stephen Hawking would make a cameo. Well, geeks and FOGs (friends of geeks), after last week’s heart-fluttering Leonard Nimoy voice cameo, Sheldon (Jim Parsons) stepped it up last night, actually meeting his hero Hawking. It was all going really well, until… Watch below. READ FULL STORY
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Nobody in Panem really wants to be in District 12 — not even those unfortunate enough to call it home. From its ramshackle houses to the Little House on the Prairie-style garb its people wear, Katniss Everdeen’s birthplace is bleak, gray, and depressingly old-fashioned. In fact, the only less desirable location in Panem might be the arena where the Hunger Games themselves are held.
Then again, Hunger Games super-fans don’t exactly see things that way. According to People, droves of them are flocking to North Carolina so that they can visit locations seen in the blockbuster film — and imagine themselves as citizens of Panem. READ FULL STORY
Regardless of what the public thinks, Ashton Kutcher has a stamp of approval to portray late Apple founder Steve Jobs from at least one inside source. According to TMZ, Steve Wozniak, Jobs’ partner in founding the computer dynasty, is A-OK with the casting news.
“The fear that many might have is that Ashton was selected because he’s ‘hot’ right now,” said Wozniak, “but I feel that his selection was done in the most professional manner. And I’m glad that he’s on board. I think he’ll put a lot into it and that he cares about this particular subject.”
The indie biopic, from Swing Vote director Joshua Michael Stern, goes simply by the name Jobs and will reportedly follow the tech impresario’s transition “from wayward hippie to co-founder of Apple.” It’s set to begin filming next month. READ FULL STORY
On this week’s episode of Entertainment Geekly — our new podcast devoted to all things science fiction, fantasy, and generally weird in an awesome way — Jeff Jensen and I tackle a couple of fantasy-themed projects, including the return of HBO’s Game of Thrones and the debut of Brian K. Vaughan’s new comic series, Saga.
There’s also a brief tangent on the release of the hotly unanticipated remake-sequel Wrath of the Titans, followed by a lengthy conversation about The Hunger Games. Having not read the books, Jeff enjoyed the movie and thinks it could be a game changer for Hollywood. I was a fan of the books — and a wanna-be philosophy major — so I think the film missed the whole point Suzanne Collins was trying to make. Bloodshed ensues. Actually, no, we just talk out our differences. Clearly, Jeff and I both play Paragon in Mass Effect, and if you understand what that means, you’re a total nerd and my soulmate. Listen below! READ FULL STORY
I would love to be spending this time celebrating Leonard Nimoy’s fabulous guest spot on last night’s The Big Bang Theory. With Nimoy retired from on-camera acting, it was an inspired decision to have him play the voice of Sheldon’s Spock action figure, helping his owner through the thorny moral dilemma of whether to play with a vintage Star Trek toy, and what to do after Sheldon (Jim Parsons) does play with it — and it breaks. Placing Spock in various pensive and expressive poses as he guided and scolded Sheldon had me giggling throughout the episode. Better yet, there’s no reason why Spock-as-Sheldon’s-conscience can’t show up again at some point down the road.
Alas, what could have been one of the best Big Bangs of the season was marred by the episode’s other plotline: The increasingly woebegone romantic tribulations of Raj Koothrappali (Kunal Nayyar). READ FULL STORY
Panem’s Capitol is a futuristic nightmare filled with garish colors, slick death traps, and genetically engineered monsters that sport the hungry eyes of murdered children. (Suzanne Collins certainly knows how to paint a picture.) The rest of the post-apocalyptic Hunger Games world, though, is weirdly retro. District 3 may be devoted to creating electric doodads, but Katniss Everdeen’s home base of District 12 might as well be trapped in the 1930s. Several reviewers even noted that in Gary Ross’s film adaptation, the area looked like it emerged fully formed from a Dorothea Lange photo.
It makes sense, then, that Panem would embrace an old-fashioned aesthetic in its hypothetical propaganda posters. CollegeHumor staffers Caldwell Tanner and Nathan Yaffe — much like this Cafe Press artist — took that idea and ran with it, creating a series of Capitol-approved banners that cheekily promote President Snow’s agenda. Take a look at our three favorites below — then head to College Humor to see the rest of the set.
Want to test your game show know-how? Okay, hotshot. Here’s your first clue: “Taking this 10-minute quiz is the first step toward becoming a Jeopardy! contestant.”
If you answered “What is the Jeopardy! Online Test?” you might just be ready to trade erudite quips with Alex Trebek. But before you can snag a spot in Trebek’s Culver City studio, you’ll have to conquer the test itself — a 50-clue ordeal that’ll assess your knowledge of history, geography, culture, and jabs named after animals. (Rabbit punch! Rabbit punch!)
The quiz, which is administered a few times each year, will next be given tonight at 9pm Eastern Time. Registration is open until 8:30 p.m. ET, though the test makers suggest registering sooner rather than later. Those who garner a high enough score will be invited to an in-person audition in one of nine cities. There they’ll be tasked with charming Jeopardy! producers while playing a mock version of the game with other wanna-be Ken Jenningses. (Full disclosure: I made it to round two in 2008. I didn’t get on the show, but I did get a really nifty Jeopardy! pen.)
So how should you prepare for this potentially life-altering occasion? First, make sure you register for the thing. Then check out our list of suggestions below: READ FULL STORY
The Hunger Games is indisputably the first big movie of 2012. Based on the beloved, bleak YA novel by Suzanne Collins — which led into even bleaker, somewhat less beloved sequels — the film has already earned $19.2 million at the midnight box office, a record for a non-sequel. But what, exactly, does the film’s success mean? What is it about Collins’ book that is so captivating in our modern age — and does the movie have the same power?
That’s the main subject of the first episode of our new weekly podcast, Entertainment Geekly, local geek guru Jeff “Doc” Jensen and I will be chatting obsessively about all things geek. Other topics today include tonight’s thrilling episode of Fringe, the much-loathed conclusion to the Mass Effect videogame franchise, and the teaser for Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome. We hope you enjoy listening! READ FULL STORY
ORIGINAL STORY: At the annual Nickelodeon upfront presentation last week, über-producer Michael Bay revealed details for Platinum Dunes’ upcoming live-action Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie, including a new origin story for the half-shell heroes that is sure to raise the ire of diehard fans.
“When you see this movie, kids are going to believe one day these turtles actually do exist when we are done with this movie,” said Bay as he took the stage to discuss his new vision for the reptilian reboot. “These turtles are from an alien race, and they are going to be tough, edgy, funny and completely loveable.”
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