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NEW SERIES BALLERS, STARRING DWAYNE JOHNSON, DEBUTS JUNE 21, EXCLUSIVELY ON HBO

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Spencer is a retired football superstar who is trying to reinvent himself as a financial manager for current players in sunsoaked Miami. His inner circle includes Ricky, a talented but volatile wide receiver who seeks to balance his off-field antics with his passion for the game; Charles, a reluctantly retired lineman who’s finding it hard to adjust to civilian life; and Vernon, a player with a rookie contract, whose promise never to forget “where he came from” brings scores of hangers-on into his life, and lands him in big financial trouble. Though they’re pros when it comes to playing the game, each one has a harder time navigating life off the field.

Created by Stephen Levinson (HBO’s “Entourage,” “Boardwalk Empire” and “In Treatment”) and executive produced by Stephen Levinson, Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Dany Garcia, Peter Berg, Evan Reilly, Rob Weiss, Julian Farino and Denis Biggs, BALLERS explores the whirlwind lifestyle and real-life problems of a group of former and current football players. The show kicks off its ten-episode season SUNDAY, JUNE 21 (10:00-10:30 p.m. ET/PT), exclusively on HBO.

BALLERS stars Dwayne Johnson (“San Andreas,” “Furious 7”) as Spencer Strasmore, John David Washington as Ricky Jerret, Omar Miller (“CSI: Miami”) as Charles Greane and Donovan Carter as Vernon Littlefield.

Other series regulars include Troy Garity (“Barbershop”), Rob Corddry (“Hot Tub Time Machine”), London Brown (“The Hustle”) and Jazmyn Simon.

June’s episodes:

  Episode #1: “Pilot”

Debut date: SUNDAY, JUNE 21

After the unexpected demise of a friend and former teammate, retired football superstar Spencer (Dwayne Johnson) ramps up his efforts to build a post-football career in Miami, and feels pressure from Joe (Rob Corddry), his boss at a financial firm, to “monetize his friendships.” Meanwhile, recently retired player Charles (Omar Miller), copes with the realities of finding a new job. Talented wide receiver Ricky (John David Washington) is forced to put his pride aside to find a new home. Vernon (Donovan Carter), a player on the rise, finds himself in a tight spot and reaches out to Spencer for help.

Written by Stephen Levinson; directed by Peter Berg.

 

Episode #2: “Raise Up”

Debut date: SUNDAY, JUNE 28

A cash-strapped Spencer struggles to close a deal when Vernon’s best friend, Reggie (London Brown), refuses to step aside, while Jason (Troy Garity) works hard to renegotiate for his client. On his first day of workouts, Ricky finds that not all his new teammates are friendly. At his new job, Charles finds it hard to keep his mind off the game. At a brunch to talk business, Spencer counsels Vernon to learn from his mistakes.

Written by Evan Reilly; directed by Julian Farino.

 

BALLERS was created by Stephen Levinson; executive produced by Stephen Levinson, Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Dany Garcia, Peter Berg, Evan Reilly, Rob Weiss, Julian Farino, Denis Biggs; co-executive producer, Hiram Garcia.

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Thatsmye Interviews: Les Weiler on Henchin’: the Series

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The 8 Episode Series Tries To Encompass A Lot Leaving Fans In A Cliffhanger.

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The 2010 “Avatar: The Last Airbender” movie by M. Night Shyamalan faced criticism for its deviations from the beloved animated series. The film struggled with pacing, casting, and a lackluster script, disappointing fans who cherished the source material. In contrast, the 2024 Netflix series has generated positive buzz for its commitment to diverse casting, adherence to the original storyline, and improved character development. The series seems poised to capture the essence of the animated show, offering a fresh and faithful adaptation that resonates with both new and existing fans.

Even though the Netflix series comes closer to the core ideals of the animated series, I feel it lacks heart. Many scenes barely scratch the surface of the relationships between the characters and the push-and-pull relationship between Aang and Zuko. I will admit the CG versions of Momo and Appa are just so gosh darn cute.

The 8 episode series tries to encompass a lot leaving fans in a cliffhanger. It’s worth a watch and I am hanging on for the next season to be announced.

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Caesar’s Reign Comes To The Big Screen With New Trailer For Kingdom Of The Planet Of The Apes

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Director Wes Ball breathes new life into the global, epic franchise set several generations in the future following Caesar’s reign, in which apes are the dominant species living harmoniously and humans have been reduced to living in the shadows. As a new tyrannical ape leader builds his empire, one young ape undertakes a harrowing journey that will cause him to question all that he has known about the past and to make choices that will define a future for apes and humans alike. “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” is directed by Wes Ball (the “Maze Runner” trilogy) and stars Owen Teague (“IT”), Freya Allan (“The Witcher”), Kevin Durand (“Locke & Key”), Peter Macon (“Shameless”), and William H. Macy (“Fargo”). The screenplay is by Josh Friedman (“War of the Worlds”) and Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver (“Avatar: The Way of Water”) and Patrick Aison (“Prey”), based on characters created by Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver, and the producers are Wes Ball, Joe Hartwick, Jr., p.g.a. (“The Maze Runner”), Rick Jaffa, p.g.a., Amanda Silver, p.g.a., Jason Reed, p.g.a. (“Mulan”), with Peter Chernin (the “Planet of the Apes” trilogy) and Jenno Topping (“Ford v. Ferrari”) serving as executive producers.

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