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HomeIndustry SectorFilmOver the Weekend 11/9/20: Alex Trebek R.I.P, Depp Exits Fantastic Beasts and...

Over the Weekend 11/9/20: Alex Trebek R.I.P, Depp Exits Fantastic Beasts and More News


Alex Trebek
Alex Trebek (Photo: Horace Newcomb)

The happy news that the country had elected its 46th President in former VP Joe Biden and first-ever woman Vice President of color in Kamala Harris was countered on Sunday morning  with the sad news that long-time Jeopardy host Alex Trebek had died after a nearly two-year fight against stage 4 pancreatic cancer. Trebek had taped enough episodes to get the show through Christmas, although it’s going to be a sad process to decide whether and how to replace him. Sad memories were shared over the entire weekend, including one from the show’s GOAT (Greatest of All Time) Ken Jennings, who said, “Alex wasn’t just the best ever at what he did. He was also a lovely and deeply decent man, and I’m grateful for every minute I got to spend with him.”

The weekend began on Friday with the shocking news that Warner Bros. has asked Johnny Depp to vacate his role as the villain Grindelwald for the upcoming Fantastic Beasts 3, which has been filming in the UK for the past few months. Depp announced and acknowledged the request via Instagram, saying that he “respected and agreed” to said request, having only shot a single scene for the movie so far.

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The Witcher (Netflix)

According to DeadlineNetflix has had to shut down production on its popular The Witcher series due to four positive COVID-19 cases on the production, which had been filming at London’s Arborfield Studios. None of the lead cast were among those testing positive and those affected have been isolated. This is the second time filming on the show’s second season has been paused, the last time when actor Kristofer Hivju tested positive in March. That shutdown continued through August as the entire country went into lockdown.

Santa Clarita Studios, the production facility located 30 miles North of Hollywood, has had five positive cases of COVID reported to the County of Los Angeles Public Health, although there’s no further news about when these cases were reported other than the fact that it was five employees  of the studio’s production equipment company and not associated with any specific production. According to the studio, those who tested positive have “received the all clear” from a doctor and are “back at work” already.

Apparently, things are moving faster on the planned Suicide Squad spin-off series for HBO Max, starring John Cena as Peacemaker, than some expected. Director and Executive Producer James Gunn proclaimed he’s already starting his two-week quarantine in British Columbia as part of the required COVID protocols. The announcement was more to show off that he was one of the first lucky recipients to get the new XBox Series X which hits the streets tomorrow.

Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios‘ third collaboration for Spider-Man: Homesick is now well into production as star Tom Holland posted his own Instagram post of himself on a blue screen stage in full-on costume, presumably at the newly-named Trilith Studios with Director Jon Watts back at the helm. 

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Wear a mask, I’m wearing two…

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As expected, reteaming Kevin Costner and Diane Lane for the Focus Features thriller, Let Him Go, wasn’t enough to save the faltering box office, a it premiered in the #1 slot with just $4.1 million in 2,454 theaters. That was about the same amount made by Liam Neeson‘s Honest Thief a few weeks back. Focus’ other release, the horror film Come Play dropped to second place with an estimated $1.7 million.

Edward Douglas
Edward Douglas
Edward Douglas has written about movies for print and the internet for over 20 years, specializing in box office analysis, reviews, and interviews. Currently, he writes features for Below the Line and Above the Line, acting as Associate Editor for the former and Interim Editor for the latter.
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