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'The Hobbit' fan event: Meet Orlando Bloom, Evangeline Lilly, director Peter Jackson, and more

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Those poor elves in Middle-earth are finally getting a decent Wi-Fi connection.

They’ll need it for Nov. 4, when fans can meet and greet director Peter Jackson and the cast of the second film in the Hobbit trilogy, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, via satellite-linked cinemas all over the world. Hobbit stars will be scattered throughout movie theaters in Los Angeles, New York, London, and Wellington, New Zealand. Each theater will be connected by satellite, so audiences in each theater can participate in a simultaneous Q&A and get a first look at extended footage from the film.

Your Middle-earth guide? CNN anchor Anderson Cooper will host the entire event from New York, joined by Richard Armitage (Thorin Oakenshield) and Orlando Bloom (Legolas). Evangeline Lilly, who joins the cast as Elf warrior, Tauriel, will log on from Los Angeles. London will host other cast additions Lee Pace (who plays Elf King Thranduil), Luke Evans (Bard the Bowman) and Andy Serkis, who previously played Gollum. Director Peter Jackson will join from Wellington. Other select theaters around the world will also allow fans to watch the event.

Can’t make the trek to a Hobbit host city? Watch from your computer screen, as it will also be streamed online.

For more details on participating theaters and how to sign up, check out the official movie website, The Hobbit Facebook page, and official Twitter under hashtag #hobbitfanevent.

The fan event will take place Nov. 4, at 5 p.m. ET. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug arrives in theaters Dec. 13.

Returning to 'Jedi': Ewok down memory lane with Kevin Smith, Seth Green, Chris Hardwick, Eli Roth -- VIDEO

EW approached filmmaker Kyle Newman (Fanboys) with a simple proposition: Will you make us a short film that collects famous voices talking about Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi and their feelings about the film as it reaches its 30th anniversary?

After sweet-talking him with promises of no money and too-little time, we mentioned that he was our only hope and, weirdly, that worked. The result is  The Return of Return of the Jedi: 30 Years and Counting, which shows elite geeks — among them Kevin Smith, Seth Green, Chris Hardwick, Jaime King, Topher Grace, Fall Out Boy, Eli Roth, and Jason Mewes — revisiting the movie in which tribal Teddy Ruxpins put down an Imperial invasion force with rocks, logs, and other Gilligan’s Island-esque props. Who saw that coming?

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Ridley Scott (kind of) shoots down rumors of re-teaming with Harrison Ford in 'Blade Runner' project -- EXCLUSIVE

Earlier this week, a wildfire was set ablaze on the Internet when it was reported that Ridley Scott was in talks with Harrison Ford to reprise his role as replicant detective Rick Deckard in the director’s in-development Blade Runner sequel. The next day, the project’s producers quickly squashed those rumors. Who to believe? The whole thing was beginning to seem as confusing as the non-voiceover version of the 1982 sci-fi classic itself — minus the origami unicorn. So EW went straight to the source to weigh in on the rumors: Ridley Scott.

While meeting with director yesterday to discuss his upcoming 3-D is-it-or-isn’t-it-an-Alien-prequel Prometheus, we put the Harrison Ford question to him. Here’s what he had to say… READ FULL STORY

'The Avengers': See the teaser for the superhero team's Super Bowl trailer

It’s a teaser … for a trailer.

And yes, it’s only 17 seconds long, but for superhero fans starving for news about The Avengers, this short clip from Sunday’s Super Bowl trailer is a welcome morsel.

The clip (see it after the jump) was revealed after a Twitter live-chat today, with Samuel L. Jackson, Tom Hiddleston, Clark Gregg, and writer-director Joss Whedon providing a few A’s to their fans’ many Q’s.

The responses weren’t always so serious, but there was some good debunking (that rumor about Spider-Man being in the film…? False.) A little more news came out afterward: The Avengers will be remastered into IMAX 3-D for its May 4 debut. So prepare your eyeballs for that.

Click through to watch the preview clip.

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Joss Whedon: 'The Avengers' is seen through one superhero's eyes -- EXCLUSIVE

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While The Avengers is clearly a group effort uniting some of Marvel’s most iconic superheroes, one crusader in particular will serve as the perspective for the movie, according to writer-director Joss Whedon.

Longtime fans of the comic series will probably be pleased to hear which character he thinks provides the grounding focus.

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Alternate-history Spielberg: Who ALMOST starred in his most famous movies?

Behind every movie you love, there is a story about how it almost became something entirely different.

In Steven Spielberg’s recent EW Interview, he revealed plot changes and alternate casting that might have made some classic movies virtually unrecognizable. Everyone knows Tom Selleck was his first choice to play Indiana Jones, though Selleck couldn’t get released from his Magnum P.I. contract to film it.

There are many more lesser-known stories about similar switches. Click through to see how E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Jurassic Park, Hook, and even Jaws might look in an alternate Spielbergian universe…

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'Princess Bride': New poster revealed for Jason Reitman's live reading

His name is Jason Reitman. He is recreating The Princess Bride live on stage. Prepare to smile.

The Young Adult and Up in the Air filmmaker has created a phenomenon in Los Angeles with his first two live readings of classic movies, starting with The Breakfast Club (featuring Jennifer Garner, Aaron Paul, and Patton Oswalt in the roles originated by Molly Ringwald, Judd Nelson, and Anthony Michael Hall). His second installment was The Apartment, with Steve Carell, Natalie Portman, and Pierce Brosnan in the Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine, and Fred MacMurray parts. READ FULL STORY

Christian Bale on 'The Dark Knight Rises': He's done with Batman, and he really really means it

Christian Bale confirmed that next summer’s The Dark Knight Rises will be his last outing as the hoarse Caped Crusader. Again.

Recall that last November, he said as much to E!: “This will be, I believe, until Chris [Nolan] says different, the last time I’ll be playing Batman,” Bale said then. “Absolutely, we want to go all out with it.”

But the enthusiasm and anticipation for the third Christopher Nolan Batman film is such that when Bale recently told another reporter the same thing, the Internets buzzed anew. “I wrapped a few days ago so that will be the last time I’m taking that cowl [Batman hood] off,” he told the Philippine Daily Inquirer. “I believe that the whole production wrapped yesterday, so it’s all done. Everything’s finished. It’s me and Chris — that will be the end of that Batman era.”

Warner Bros. and Bale’s representative didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment, but it’s long been known that Bale had originally signed for three Batman films. And since he’s agreed to film two Terrence Malick films back to back, he might be busy for the foreseeable future. Better check the batteries on the Bat Signal. Bales doesn’t expect to be answering it anytime soon.

Read more:
The Knight Shift: The Men Behind the Cowl
‘The Dark Knight Rises’ trailer

'Prometheus': Ridley Scott returns to space -- FIRST LOOK

When it comes to sci-fi classics, Ridley Scott has a pretty impeccable record. Not only did he direct the fiery 1979 action-fest Alien, he helmed the genre-redefining Blade Runner in 1982.

So it’s understandable that anticipation is running high for Scott’s upcoming sci-fi return, Prometheus, a 3-D space thriller starring Charlize Theron, Michael Fassbender, and Noomi Rapace, which is set to hit theaters on June 8, 2012. Lucky for you, EW has the exclusive first look at the film! READ FULL STORY

'Twilight: Breaking Dawn' audience rating from CinemaScore doesn't sparkle

Okay, so The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 1 gets a B-plus from moviegoers.

Really?

A B-plus ranking from CinemaScore? That’s it?

Granted, a B-plus isn’t terrible, but considering the passion and hysteria surrounding this franchise, it’s a bit of a surprise. New Moon got an A-minus, and Eclipse scored an A.

So what happened here? Did something in this film shake the vampire-loving faithful?

Actually, blame the boyfriends …

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