Gloria Estefan’s “Father of the Bride” Becomes HBO Max’s Biggest Ever Streaming-Only Film Debut

Gloria Estefan is celebrating a father of a debut… 

Father’s Day weekend proved to be the ideal launchpad for Warner Bros’ romantic comedy Father of the Bride, starring the 64-year-old Cuban singer/actress ad Andy Garcia.

Gloria EstefanThe film ended up being the biggest HBO Max movie premiere ever in its four days, specifically for a title that was exclusively made for the streaming service.

Father of the Bride was the No. 1 title across HBO Max around the world in its first four days since it launched on Thursday, June 16. The film also ranked among the top 10 most-watched title launches on HBO Max to date in Mexico, based on its first four days.

The fresh angle in this Latino take on Father of the Bride: The bride’s parents, played by Garcia and Estefan, are on the verge of a divorce.

Mexico ranks as the second-strongest country for Father of the Bride viewing on HBO Max to date, behind only the U.S.

As HBO Max looks to make its mark in Latin America, especially after a June 2021 launch in the region, a title like Father of the Bride fits the bill in appealing to both U.S. and local subscribers in its universal story of marriage and in-laws. Father’s Day weekend was the prime drop date for the Plan B production, and filmmaker Gary Alazraki is beloved in Mexico for his comedies like We Are the Nobles

Warner Bros. production executives were won over by screenwriter Matt Lopez’s fresh take on the romantic comedy/wedding genre. Warner Bros. development exec Paul Perez championed the scribe’s script and won support for it at a studio feature development retreat. Perez, who now has a production deal on the Burbank lot, mined the IP out of the studio’s portion of the pre-1986 MGM library; the 1950 Vincente Minnelli-directed title previously was licensed to Disney’s Touchstone label, which made the 1991 Steve MartinDiane KeatonMartin Short remake that also spawned a sequel.

Samba TV, which counts a sampling of 3M U.S. terrestrial TV households, not mobile, did not have ratings today for Father of the Bride due to the Juneteenth holiday.

Andy Garcia Returning for “Book Club 2 – The Next Chapter”

Andy Garcia is heading back to book club…

The 66-year-old Cuban actor will star opposite Diane KeatonJane FondaCandice BergenMary Steenburgen, Don Johnson and Craig T. Nelson in Book Club 2, which has entered production in Italy.

Andy GarciaGarcia and his cast mates will reprise their roles from the original film, Book Club, with Giancarlo Giannini, Hugh Quarshie and Vincent Riotta joining the sequel as new cast members.

The original 2018 film followed four lifelong friends—played by Keaton, Fonda, Bergen and Steenburgen—whose lives were forever changed after reading 50 Shades of Grey in their monthly book club. Paramount Pictures released it in May of 2018 and saw it gross upwards of $104M worldwide against its $14M budget.

The sequel will follow our four best friends as they take their book club to Italy for the fun girls trip they never had. When things go off the rails and secrets are revealed, their relaxing vacation turns into a once-in-a-lifetime cross-country adventure.

Bill Holderman has returned as director, having once again penned the script with Erin Simms.

Endeavor Content is financing and producing Book Club 2 – The Next Chapter, with Holderman and Simms also aboard as producers.

Focus Features will distribute the film in the U.S., with Universal Pictures International distributing it internationally.

Garcia will next star in Father of the Bride.

Andy Garcia to Star in the Courtroom Drama “Miranda’s Victim”

Andy Garcia is heading to court…

The 66-year-old Cuban actor will star in the courtroom drama Miranda’s Victim from director Michelle Danner, with production on the project underway in New Jersey.

Andy GarciaGarcia will star opposite Abigail BreslinLuke Wilson and Donald Sutherland  in the film, which is written by J. Craig Stiles and George Kolber.

The film will tell the true story of Trish Weir (Breslin), who in 1963 was kidnapped and brutally raped by Ernesto Miranda. Committed to putting her assailant in prison, Trish’s life is destroyed by America’s legal system as she triggers a law that transforms the nation.

Wilson will play Lawrence Turoff, the country prosecutor that convinces Trish to testify and helps her bring her aggressor to justice, with Garcia as public defender Alvin Moore, who takes on Miranda’s case, and Sutherland as Judge Wren, who convicts Miranda for the rape of Weir.

Danner and Kolber are producing alongside Valerie Debler, Brian Drillinger and Alexandra Guarnieri.

The production company involved is Navesink River Productions.

“The first time I read George Kolber’s riveting script and learned about Trish’s experience, it moved and inspired me,” said Danner. “”Miranda’s Victim” puts us at the intersection between a brutal rape case and and a national movement for civil liberties.”

Garcia is an Oscar, Golden Globe and Emmy nominee whose recent film credits include Guy Ritchie’s Jason Statham actioner Wrath of Man; the comedy Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar, with Kristen Wiig, Annie Mumolo and Jamie Dornan; the romantic drama Words on Bathroom Walls, with Charlie Plummer and Taylor Russell; Clint Eastwood’s crime drama, The Mule; Sacha Gervasi’s Emmy-nominated TV movie My Dinner with Hervé for HBO; Ol Parker’Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again; and the comedy Book Club, with Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda and Candice Bergen.

The actor’s credits on the television side include RebelFlipped and Ballers.

He’ll next be seen in Warner Bros. and HBO Max’s Father of the Bride; the romantic drama What About Love, with Sharon Stone; and Lionsgate’s The Expendables 4.

Lin-Manuel Miranda to Star Opposite Blake Lively in the Romantic Comedy “The Making Of”

Lin-Manuel Miranda is making new moves…

The 40-year-old Puerto Rican actor/singer and Broadway star will star in The Making Of, a romantic comedy written and produced by Ed Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz.

Lin-Manuel Miranda

In addition to Miranda, who recently earned a spot of ForbesHigh-Paid Actors list, the film will also star Richard Gere, Diane Keaton and Blake Lively.

The Making Of centers on two couples: long-married filmmakers (Gere and Keaton) have cast overemotional actors (Lively and Miranda) to portray their younger selves in the story of their great love. Unfortunately, by the time shooting begins, their fabled marriage is unraveling. The filmmakers want to make a hit; the actors want to tell the true story. Whose version really is the truth? And how do they distinguish between real love and movie love when their lives and their work become hopelessly intertwined?

The film will be a production of Zwick & Herskovitz’ The Bedford Falls Company. It will shoot next spring.

Miranda can currently be seen on Disney+ in the film version of his Tony Award-winning Broadway musical Hamilton.

Miranda previously starred in Speech & Debate, Mary Poppins Returns and The Odd Life of Timothy Green. He’ll appear in the film adaptation of another of his Tony Award-winning Broadway musicals, In The Heights.

Ariana DeBose to Take Part in Virtual Concert to Benefit the Covenant House Charity for Homeless & Trafficked Youth

Ariana DeBose  is helping homeless and trafficked youth…

The 29-year-old half-Afro-Puerto Rican actress, singer and dancer, known for her work in musical theatre and on So You Think You Can Dance, will take part in a virtual concert event to benefit the Covenant House charity for homeless and trafficked youth.

Ariana DeBose

DeBose joins a 50-plus roster of stars who’ll perform or appear for the May 18 fundraiser that includes Meryl StreepDiane Keaton, Jon Bon JoviRachel BrosnahanStephen ColbertMartin ShortDolly PartonDionne WarwickStephanie J. BlockTony ShalhoubCharlie DayChris O’DowdZachary Leviand Zachary Quinto.

A Night of Covenant House Stars, to be held on Monday, May 18 at 8:00 pm ET on the Broadway on Demand streaming platform, will be co-hosted by six-time Tony Award-winner Audra McDonald and 60 Minutes orrespondent John Dickerson, both members of the Covenant House Board of Directors.

The event is designed to support Covenant House, the international, mostly privately funded charity providing housing, food and healthcare to children and youth facing homelessness, and the front-line staff working during the COVID-19crisis.

“This virus does not get the last word,” said Covenant House President & CEO Kevin Ryan. “This amazing group of stars uniting in love to help us care for kids is proof positive of that.”

Other stars slated to appear include Robin Thicke, Deborah CoxQuentin Earl DarringtonDarius de HaasMary Elizabeth EllisEden EspinosaJordan FisherStephanie Hsu,Randy JacksonCapathia JenkinsJeremy JordanRamona KellerAlex NewellKaren OlivoDawn O’Porter, Laura OsnesBenj PasekJodi Picoult, Shereen PimentelAndrew RannellsKeala SettleJake David SmithWill SwensonBobby Conte ThorntonAna VillafaneFrank Wildhorn, and the Broadway Inspirational Voices choir.

Event proceeds will benefit Covenant House’s work across 31 cities, in six countries.

The May 18 fundraiser will mark the launch of the Broadway on Demand platform (the company had previously announced a May 17 program). Viewers can watch the Covenant House event free of charge.

In addition to Broadway on DemandA Night of Covenant House Starscan be streamed on iHeartRadio BroadwayFacebookTwitchYouTube, and Stars in the House.

Salma Hayek to Present at This Year’s Oscars

Salma Hayekwill be taking the Oscarsstage…

The 53-year-old Mexican actress and producer has been added to the list of presenters for the 92nd annual Academy Awards telecast on Sunday.

Salma Hayek

In addition to Hayek, who earned an Oscar nod for her portrayal of iconic Mexican painter Frida Kahlo in the 2002 film Frida, the new additions include Utkarsh AmbudkarBrie LarsonSpike LeeRay Romano, and Rebel Wilson

Previously announced presenters include James CordenPenélope CruzBeanie FeldsteinZack GottsagenDiane KeatonShia LaBeouf, George MacKaySteve MartinKeanu Reeves, Maya Rudolph, Zazie BeetzTimothée ChalametWill FerrellGal GadotMindy KalingJulia Louis-Dreyfus, Lin-Manuel MirandaAnthony RamosMark RuffaloKelly Marie Tran, Kristen Wiig and Sigourney Weaver.

The 92nd annual Academy Awards will be broadcast live on ABC on February 9 from the Dolby Theatre

Penelope Cruz to Present at This Year’s Oscars

Penelope Cruzhas a date with Oscar

The 45-year-old Spanish actress and Oscar winner is set to present at the 92nd annual Academy Awardson ABC

Penelope Cruz

Cruz, a three-time nominee who won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her role in Woody Allen‘s Vicky Cristina Barcelona, joins a roster of new additions to the presenters roster that includes James CordenBeanie FeldsteinZack GottsagenDiane KeatonShia LaBeouf, George MacKaySteve MartinKeanu Reeves, Maya Rudolph and Sigourney Weaver.

Previously announced presenters include Zazie BeetzTimothée ChalametWill FerrellGal GadotMindy KalingJulia Louis-DreyfusLin-Manuel MirandaAnthony RamosMark RuffaloKelly Marie Tranand Kristen Wiig.

The Oscars will be televised live on February 9 from the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.

Cámara to Star in Paolo Sorrentino’s Eight-Episode Series “The Young Pope”

Javier Cámara is getting his Masters

The 48-year-old Spanish actor has been cast in Paolo Sorrentino’s The Young Pope.

Javier Cámara

Starring Jude Law and Diane Keaton, the eight-episode series that tells the fictional story of the beginning of the Pontificate of Pius XIII, an Italian-American born Lenny Belardo.

Law is Pius XIII/Lenny with Keaton as Sister Mary, a nun from the U.S. The plot centers on the controversial story of the beginning of Pius’ Pontificate. A complex and conflicted character, he is a man of great power who’s stubbornly resistant to the Vatican courtiers, unconcerned with the implications on his authority.

Cámara, who starred in the Pedro Almodóvar films Talk to Her and Bad Education, is set to play Cardinal Gutierrez, Vatican City Master of Ceremonies.

Other cast members include James Cromwell as Cardinal Michael Spencer, Silvio Orlando (The Caiman) as Secretary of State Cardinal Voiello, Scott Shepherd (And So It Goes) as Cardinal Dussolier and Belgian actress Cécile de France (The Kid With A Bike) as Sofia, who is in charge of marketing in Vatican City.

Swimming Pool‘s Ludivine Sagnier is Esther, the wife of a Swiss guard; and Toni Bertorelli (Passion Of The Christ) has been cast as Cardinal Caltanissetta.

Sorrentino, who won the Foreign Language Oscar for The Greaty Beauty and helmed this year’s Cannes Film Festival entry Youth, is directing all eight episodes of The Young Pope.

Sorrentino says the series will cover “The clear signs of God’s existence. The clear signs of God’s absence. How faith can be searched for and lost. The greatness of holiness, so great as to be unbearable when you are fighting temptations and when all you can do is to yield to them. The inner struggle between the huge responsibility of the Head of the Catholic Church and the miseries of the simple man that fate (or the Holy Spirit) chose as Pontiff. Finally, how to handle and manipulate power in a state whose dogma and moral imperative is the renunciation of power and selfless love towards one’s neighbor.”

Additional cast members include: Guy Boyd, Andre Gregory, Sebastian Roché, Marcello Romolo, Ignazio Oliva, Vladimir Bibic and Nadie Kammalaweera.

Production on the SkyHBO and Canal Plus drama began last week with the full cast now set.