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Series Inspired by ‘The Shining’ Ordered for HBO Max

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Shining

HBO is pulling out all the stops for new content for its upcoming HBO Max, a streaming platform set to launch in May 2020, and according to Variety, that will include a new series based on The Shining titled Overlook.

The show will be produced with J.J. Abrams and his Bad Robot Productions company.

Overlook will reportedly explore the untold stories of the Overlook hotel as written by Stephen King in his 1977 novel, The Shining. The novel centers on a family who have taken on the job of care-taking for the hotel’s owner during the winter months. However, they soon find that the hotel is never, ever unoccupied.

It is, perhaps, one of King’s most famous works in a career that has spawned multiple classics. He based the novel on the historic and also reportedly haunted Stanley Hotel in the mountain village of Estes Park, Colorado.

This is only one of the series Abrams and Bad Robot are producing for the streaming service. They are also working on Justice Leak Dark, and Duster, an original drama series.

HBO Max is set for launch next month with a massive catalog of shows and movies as well as original content all for $14.99 per month, the same price as a current HBO Go subscription. Subscribers who are already signed up for HBO Go, will be able to upgrade to Max on launch day.

Are you excited at the prospect of this series? Let us know what you think in the comments!

Games

The Creepy Toy You Keep Seeing Everywhere & Why It’s Trending

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Video game character Fuzzy Wuzzy with sharp teeth

You can tell the popularity of a cultural phenomenon just by looking at the prizes at a fair. The sharp-toothed, blue monster known as “Huggy Wuggy,” is currently the prize du Jour at Midway games and on an upward trend of kid’s (and adult) collectibles.

But who is he and why is he causing such a fuss among parents? Gamers everywhere probably know of this creepy 20-foot doll from the game Poppy Playtime, a thirteen and up horror survival game that’s bark is worse than its bite.

Although the ESRB has slapped a “T” for Teen rating on the box, the content is somewhat mild for parents to start freaking out about. As with most nutritional facts, the largest ingredients are listed at the beginning.

In Poppy Playtime’s case, the T is for Blood and Violence which doesn’t make it a scarlet letter, so to speak. If it was that bad, the conservative ESRB would have used their fists to hammer down an “M” rating for mature.

Parents shouldn’t be concerned with what the game has as far as content, they should however investigate further before falling into the klatch of mass hysteria instigated by ignorant knee-jerk reactionaries sometimes called parents.

PC Gamer: Mob Games

The internet has a strange way of creating drama where there shouldn’t be. Several fan-made memes and videos have surfaced about Poppy Playtime and how it influences kids to jump to their deaths or do other horrible things. remember the Momo? Turns out, if you said its name it didn’t come to find and kill you as the legend said. It was just a piece of modern art that didn’t move except by way of imagination.

Poppy Playtime Is Their First Game

The same seems to be the case for Huggy Wuggy. Yes, he’s a bit intimidating, but so was Animal from the muppets until you realized he was fake. Forbes talked to the President and CEO of the developer of the game, Zach Belanger, who says there was no target audience to begin with.

“Poppy Playtime was not created with the intention to target any specific audience,” he says. “Bear in mind that this was the first game our studio ever created, and our main priority was to create something that we would enjoy playing ourselves.

“Beyond that, we have a passion for any content we create to be enjoyable by audiences of all ages. To us, it isn’t accurate to say that we created Poppy Playtime to be consumed by kids or adults, but rather our goal was simply to inspire and entertain anyone who decided to play the game.”

Huggy Wuggy
https://non-aliencreatures.fandom.com/wiki/Huggy_Wuggy

Schools have started issuing warnings to parents about the game in response to concerns from parents who may have gotten wind of hearsay.

Belanger says those stories are extremely exaggerated or false.

He adds: “One of the things we’ve read online is that Huggy Wuggy whispers creepy things into one’s ear while playing, but anyone who has actually played Poppy Playtime would know that Huggy Wuggy does not even have a voice in Chapter 1, so it’s impossible for him to have whispered anything.”

“As far as we are aware, all of these warnings from schools are originating from fan-made content based off of our game, but if you want my personal opinion, I do not think that any of these videos should be cause for concern, and we appreciate all the hard work and dedication our fans are put toward creating content inspired off of Poppy Playtime.”

The Fuzzy Song

There is also some concern around a creepy jingle that accompanies Huggy Wuggy, suggesting that he’ll “squeeze you until you pop!” Seems harmless.

But the creator of a high-energy song that pays homage to Fuzzy has been under scrutiny for his eerie lyrics. Igor Gordiyenko whose YouTube handle is TryHardNinja created a video that has reached over five million viewers.

He says there was nothing nefarious when he wrote it. He based it on the lore of the character and has set the child safety setting to 13 and over on YouTube.

“The themes and visuals of my song and video are true to the character’s lore, actions, and depiction in the game. I am not trying to make an innocent character seem scarier than they are. Much like Chucky from Child’s Play, Huggy Wuggy is and always was a horror character. My song is for fans of the source material which is not for young kids.”

Another horror survival game, Five Nights at Freddy’s didn’t have the same concerns from parents as Poppy Playtime has, and it has since blossomed into a multi-million dollar franchise with a movie adaptation on the way.

Perhaps Freddy’s narrowly missed the evolution of technology and online lore eight years ago. It was about that time that Creepypasta began to permeate the minds of creatives hoping to scare the pants off people with unnerving legends. At that time, The Slender Man came into public view and influenced impressionable teenagers to believe in the supernatural.

Even adults can fall for “real-life” mythology — by way of movies. Films like The Blair Witch Project and Paranormal Activity were so well marketed, that even level-headed grown-ups couldn’t tell the difference between reality and fantasy.

The trick with video games such as Poppy Playtime is to explore the game yourself. Research it before you buy it and don’t fall victim to the adolescent trappings of “I swear it’s true.”

Common Sense Media, one of the leaders in parental guides for content doesn’t seem worried about how Poppy Playtime will affect kids, their biggest complaint is onscreen maneuverability.

They write: “The controls are easy to pick up and play, though not always the most precise. While there’s no graphic violence or gore, there are splatters of blood throughout the factory. Also, the horror nature of the game will likely be too scary for younger audiences.

“Finally, parents should be aware that this is the first chapter of an episodic experience, meaning that it’s only part of the story and the rest must be purchased piecemeal over time.”

*Header image courtesy of TryHardNinja

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Movies

Jordan Peele Talks What is Up Next After ‘Nope’

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Jordan Peele’s Nope just crossed the $100 million mark at the domestic box office. Now that Nope is all finished up and done, it is time for the director to start thinking about what is next. We are certain no matter what direction he goes, we are in good hands.

“I don’t know what’s next, there are a few ideas percolating. I need to kind of sink into the world a bit and allow the world to sort of tell me which one is the next one. Peele told Empire. “So that’s what my next couple of months will be spent doing…Sitting, watching, waiting, looking at my coffee. If you watch good films you’ll get inspired, even if it has nothing to do with anything you want to do. That will work for me. Sometimes the inspiration comes instantly, and sometimes it comes in a long time. I do need to do some watching and listening, can’t just be always expressing yourself. You’ve got to listen.”

Of course, a while back Peele tweeted that he had “four social thrillers” that he wanted to work on in the next decade. So, it could be that Peele digs back into the social thriller category which we are totally fine with.

The synopsis for Nope goes like this:

Two siblings running a horse ranch in California discover something wonderful and sinister in the skies above, while the owner of an adjacent theme park tries to profit from the mysterious, otherworldly phenomenon.

I have enjoyed watching Peele jump around from sub-genre to sub-genre. Get Out gave us a mad scientist core, Us gave us killer doppelgangers and Nope took to the skies for extraterrestrial life. We can’t wait to see what he chooses to dig into next.

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Movies

‘District 9’ Sequel Will Start Production Soon According to Sharlto Copley

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District

Sharlto Copley is one of our faves. From District 9 to Free Fire the guy never lets us down. While Speaking of District 9 during an interview with BroBible, Copley gave fans a bit of good news. It appears that there is still motion in production when it comes to a sequel to the Neil Blomkamp epic. In fact, it looks like Blomkamp and Copley are waiting on the timing of some narrative sociopolitical bits and bobs to make more sense before going ahead with production. But, Copley seems confident on a year – to a year and a half timeline.

“Yeah, man, we’ve been working. I did a draft, I sent it back to him. He’s done a draft. It’s like just tiring to find the right story,” Copley recently explained to BroBible. “There were some things going on socio-politically that (Blomkamp) felt maybe timing-wise he didn’t want to go immediately. So maybe in like a year, year-and-a-half [we’ll begin filming]. He wants to have something to say.”

Sounds good to us. We have been dying to see a District 10.

The synopsis for District 9 went like this:

“Thirty years ago, aliens arrive on Earth — not to conquer or give aid, but — to find refuge from their dying planet. Separated from humans in a South African area called District 9, the aliens are managed by Multi-National United, which is unconcerned with the aliens’ welfare but will do anything to master their advanced technology. When a company field agent (Sharlto Copley) contracts a mysterious virus that begins to alter his DNA, there is only one place he can hide: District 9.

It also looks like Blomkamp’s Alien sequel is long dead in the water now that Disney is the head honcho over at 20th Century Fox. That could have been seriously great. It is a bummer to know we will never get our eyes on it.

Fingers crossed. We will be sure to keep you updated on all things District 10.

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