Saturday, 6 September 2014

The Tick rebooted as Amazon Pilot

TheWrap reports The Tick will be rebooted as part of the next Amazon Pilot Season.

The original live-action series, following the hit animated series on the defunct children's channel Fox Kids, was short-lived despite universal acclaim in 2001.

Patrick Warburton (Family Guy) is set to reprise the role of the titular character after negotiating a deal with Sony Television who held the rights to the original series.

It's a canny leftfield move by Amazon as its original series haven't been as well received as arch-rival Netflix.

Which series would you like to see rebooted? Let me know in the comments below.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Amazon Fire TV to challenge Apple TV in Europe

Amazon has announced Fire TV is coming to Europe only months after the sleek streaming device's US debut.

Speaking on the first day of the IFA technology show in Berlin, senior vice president of devices David Limp said: "We think that the products that are out there - and we sell a lot of them on Amazon - just haven't offered customers the value that we think you can, and this is an existence proof that you can put a lot of horsepower and performance into a box, at a great value."

Fire TV ships from 23rd October. The device will be available from Amazon, Argos, Dixons, Sainsbury's and Tesco.

New and existing Prime members can pre-order Fire TV for only £49 in the UK. That's a £30 saving on the listed price until Monday.

Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder and CEO said: "Tiny box, huge specs, tons of content, incredible price- customers love Fire TV and we’re thrilled to introduce it in the UK.

"Voice search that actually works means no more typing on an alphabet grid. Our exclusive new ASAP feature predicts the shows you’ll want to watch and gets them ready to stream instantly. And our open approach gives you not just Amazon Instant Video and Prime Instant Video, but also Netflix, Sky News, YouTube, Spotify, and more."

In related news. Amazon has reported a 70% increase in streaming since rebranding LOVEFiLM.

“Customers tell us that they love exclusive content and we see that these movies and TV shows almost always enter the Top 5 most watched lists immediately”, said Chris Bird, Film Strategy Director for Amazon Prime Instant Video UK. “Since exclusive content has continuously been among the most streamed, we are very happy to announce more highlights coming up this autumn such as the Amazon Studios original series Transparent starring Jeffrey Tambor and Roman Coppola’s Mozart In The Jungle, and of course the third series of the cancelled popular British drama Ripper Street which we’re currently filming exclusively for Prime Instant Video customers and will launch later this year before broadcast on the BBC next year.”

Tempted to add another box below your TV? Let me know in the comments below.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Netflix nabs new drama series Gotham

Netflix, not satisfied with simply playing in Marvel's sandpit, has acquired international streaming rights to Warner Bros. Studios upcoming Batman prequel series Gotham.

“In this era of new business models and expanding windows, this is an unprecedented deal for our company and our industry,” said Jeffrey R. Schlesinger, president, Warner Bros. Worldwide Television Distribution, in a statement.

Gotham chronicles a young pre-Commissioner Gordon, serving as a Detective, and his fateful meeting with Bruce Wayne in the wake of Wayne's parents murder.

“‘Gotham’ is the most anticipated new series of the fall season and we are thrilled to offer it to our members around the world,” said Ted Sarandos, chief content officer at Netflix, in a statement. “The Batman origin story is sure to have massive global appeal so it is fitting that, along with Warner Television, we have created a new model for distributing a show that international and domestic audiences will love.”

Gotham premieres on Fox this September.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

NOW TV on Google Chromecast as ITV Encore debuts

NOW TV has quietly updated its iOS and Android apps with support for Google Chromecast. The first I learnt of this was when updating NOW TV for iPad earlier today.

This doesn't displace the NOW TV Box (based on a Roku LT) for streaming catch up services, but does add another option for subscribers who own a Chromecast device.

@blindpete has pointed out Chromecast will use one of only four device slots linked to your NOW TV account.

ITV Encore is now available to Entertainment Month Pass subscribers at no additional cost! You'll be able to watch Poirot, Prey, The Widower, Monroe, Mr. Selfridge S2 and the final series of Whitechapel.

Why not sign up for an Entertainment Month Pass and get a £5 Asda voucher? New subscribers only. Offer good through 30th September.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Star Wars Rebels: "Not What You Think"

Lucasfilm and Disney XD have posted a new short for the upcoming Star Wars Rebels series.

The shorts have met with positive reaction from fans. Mostly. There's a fear Star Wars Rebels may eschew the gravitas of The Clone Wars in favour of more 'childish' pursuits. However, I'm looking forward to the new series' debut this October on Disney XD.

Psyched for Star Wars Rebels? Let me know in the comments below.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Rise of the Tomb Raider only on Xbox One

Tomb Raider, a franchise broadly synonymous with PlayStation, will see the first sequel to its successful 2013 reboot only on Xbox One. This exclusive bombshell was announced during Gamescom and ignited fan fury across the internet.

Whether or not Rise of the Tomb Raider is a timed exclusive doesn't matter. Tomb Raider is a multi-platform franchise. Presumably, Microsoft is bankrolling the development of the new game in the hope it'll go toe-to-toe with PS4 exclusive Uncharted 4: A Thief's End during holiday 2015.

In a blog post, Crystal Dynamics chief Darrell Gallagher said the company is trying to make “the most ambitious ‘Tomb Raider’ game ever built” and that “our friends at Microsoft have always seen huge potential in 'Tomb Raider’ and have believed in our vision since our first unveil with them on their stage at E3 2011. We know they will get behind this game more than any support we have had from them in the past — we believe this will be a step to really forging the ‘Tomb Raider’ brand as one of the biggest in gaming, with the help, belief and backing of a major partner like Microsoft.”

Other Tomb Raider games will still be released on the PlayStation and PC, including December’s Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris and Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition will not be disappearing from shelves.

It wouldn't be a stretch to imagine Microsoft adding Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition for Xbox One (updated to run at 1080p/60fps) to Games with Gold in the coming months.

Microsoft also detailed an update for Xbox One, which will bring multimedia feature parity with Xbox 360. A media player with USB device playback and DLNA support soon.

Are you annoyed Lara Croft has switched to Xbox? Let me know in the comments below.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Sky Sports Week Pass on NOW TV

From Thursday NOW TV subscribers will be able to purchase a Sky Sports Week Pass for £10.99. This a smart move in Sky's battle with BT Sport and includes the brand new channel Sky Sports 5, which launches tomorrow. However, sports fans will most likely prefer a competitively priced monthly subscription much like Sky Movies.

Gidon Katz, director of NOW TV said: "With the start of the football season just days away, this is a great time to be giving sports fans even more choice. We know our sports fans are hungry for more flexibility in how they watch sports and the new Sky Sports Week Pass offers just that. Now fans simply have to decide if they want to snack on a day pass or feast on a week's sport for just £10.99."

Richard Broughton, director of broadband at research company IHS, believes the new offer is recognition that NOW TV is too pricey. “The main thing Sky is recognising here is that it is facing a bit of an uphill challenge getting consumers to buy into NOW TV. Film and entertainment are great but sport has always been the driver. They have pushed NOW TV as the more premium alternative to Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video, but it has not really been attractive enough to compete.”

NOW TV is currently available on the NOW TV Box, PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, Android smartphones and tablets, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, YouView, LG Smart TVs, selected LG media devices, Roku boxes and Apple TV (Sky Sports Day Pass only).

Sunday, 10 August 2014

First look at Disney XD series Star Wars Rebels

Disney has posted an extended preview for its upcoming Star Wars Rebels series on Disney XD.

The familiar sights and sounds of a galaxy far, far away with an Aladdin twist? I'd be remiss not to highlight a soundtrack that reprises John Williams' leitmotifs for the original Star Wars trilogy.

The new series premieres this October on Disney XD. Lookout for a range of collectibles including action figures from Hasbro.

Saturday, 9 August 2014

Bad Robot tweets Batman and Star Wars mashup

Bad Robot has tweeted an image of the prissy protocol droid C-3PO dressed as Batman responding to an Alliance signal in place of the iconic Batman logo.

This playful game of Twitter tag began when Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice director Zack Snyder posted a photo depicting Henry Cavill dressed as a Jedi Knight and wielding a lightsaber.

Any thoughts on this latest crossover? Let me know in the comments below.

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Hot Toys' Rocket and Groot are all kinds of awesome

Rejoice collectors!

Marvel studios is expanding the Marvel Cinematic Universe and bringing fans to the cosmos in the action packed space adventure - Guardians of the Galaxy. A Group of two thugs, an outlaw, an assassin and a maniac will team up to battle evil and save the galaxy!

Sideshow Collectibles and Hot Toys are excited to present the special Rocket and Groot Sixth Scale Figure Set which includes the gun-toting raccoon and his personal houseplant/muscle.

The movie-accurate Rocket Collectible Figure is specially crafted based on his unique physique in the film. It features a finely sculpted head and body, specially tailored costume, weapon, and specially designed figure stand.

The movie-accurate Groot Collectible Figure features a highly detailed head and body with amazing paint application to reflect his distinctive appearance, and a specially designed figure stand.

The Rocket and Groot Collectible Set will exclusively include an additional interchangeable angry expression face and a pair of partially clenched angry palms for Groot.

You can pre-order Rocket and Groot (affiliate link) from Sideshow Collectibles for delivery in March 2015.