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Monty Python reunion to be simulcast in nearly 2,000 movie theaters worldwide

Monty Python is not dead yet.

As you may already know, the five remaining members of the beloved comedy group – John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin — are set to reunite this summer for their first performance together in 34 years. (The sixth Python, Graham Chapman, died of cancer in 1989.) The Pythons will take the stage of London’s O2 Arena on July 1-5, 15-16, and 18-20. This news was exciting but bittersweet for legions of fans, since getting a ticket to these shows is about as difficult as determining the air-speed velocity of an unladen swallow; the O2 says every seat for Python’s first reunion performance was snatched up in a record 43.5 seconds.

But don’t go crying into your coconut shells! Picturehouse Entertainment revealed Thursday that it will broadcast the group’s final live performance simultaneously to 450 movie theaters in the United Kingdom — as well as 1,500 additional venues globally.

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Casting Net: Tim Robbins to star in, direct 'Man Under' with Michelle Pfeiffer. Plus: Benedict Cumberbatch, Gemma Arterton, Kristen Wiig

Tim Robbins will star in and direct the dramedy Man Under, with Michelle Pfeiffer and Chloe Moretz on board to play members of a family who deal with the repercussions of a photograph of them getting displayed at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. Though he recently directed a couple episodes of HBO’s Treme, this will be Robbins’ first time helming a feature film since 1999′s Cradle Will RockAnn Cherkis penned the script. [Variety]

• Gemma Arterton (Clash of the Titans) has joined, and Benedict Cumberbatch (i.e. Benny Batch) is in talks to join, Absolutely Anything, a fantastical comedy about a teacher who discovers he can do magic. The film is something of a Monty Python reunion, with Terry Jones (Monty Python and the Holy GrailLife of Brian) directing and John CleeseTerry Gilliam, and Michael Palin on board to provide voiceovers, along with Jones and Robin Williams. Jones co-wrote the film with Gavin Scott (Small Soldiers). [TheWrap]

SNL buddies Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader are set to headline the comedy The Skeleton Twins, about twin siblings who reevaluate their lives, and their relationship with each other, after they both have a near-death experience on the same day. Luke Wilson costars as Wiig’s doofus husband. Director Craig Johnson (True Adolescents) penned the script with Mark Heyman (Black Swan). [Variety]

• Clive Owen and Juliette Binoche will star in Words and Pictures, a romance about teachers at a prep school in New England. Fred Schepisi (Fierce CreaturesI.Q.Six Degrees of Separation) will direct from the script by first-timer Gerald DiPego. [Deadline]

• Dominic Cooper (Captain AmericaThe Devil’s Double) is in talks to costar with Aaron Paul in Need for Speed, an adaptation of the videogame franchise about the world of underground car racing. Scott Waugh (Act of Valor) is set to direct from the screenplay by George Gatins and John Gatins (Flight). [Variety]

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'Precious,' the National Board of Review, and the Royal Society for Putting Things on Top of Other Things

Monty Python fans will recognize the RSFPTOTOOT immediately — the esteemed members were, according to one of the Python lads’ greatest sketches, men who gathered annually for useless meetings until one day, one of their ilk declared the whole thing rather silly. And the group disbanded. I thought of the RSFPTOTOOT today when the National Board of Review — the American cinema world’s organizational equivalent — announced its choices for the year’s top 10 movies, and Precious was missing from the list. Now, I realize this omission is pretty theoretical stuff to the millions of moviegoers who have yet to see the movie. But trust me, this counts as an extremely silly snub.

Well, I was briefly starting to work up a head of steam about the matter — why is Movie X on the list but Movie Y isn’t, who are these Board Reviewers who READ FULL STORY

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