Buena Vista(NEW YORK) -- Here’s a look at the new movies opening nationwide Friday: Guardians of the Galaxy-- In Marvel's latest film, Parks and Recreation actor Chris Pratt plays Earth-born space adventurer Peter Quill, who steals a powerful orb sought by the villainous Ronan. Peter must protect the orb -- and the universe -- with the help of a ragtag bunch of allies: Rocket Raccoon, the tree-like creature Groot, the green assassin Gamora, and Drax the Destroyer. Zoe Saldana, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Djimon Hounsou, John C. Reilly and Glenn Close are among the cast for the film, which is screening in 3D and in IMAX theaters. Rated PG-13. Get On Up -- The drama from The Help director Tate Taylor tells the life story of James Brown. 42 actor Chadwick Boseman plays the late Godfather of Soul. Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer, Jill Scott and Dan Aykroyd also star in the Mick Jagger-produced biopic. Rated PG-13.
Universal(NEW YORK) -- Chadwick Boseman, who was terrific as Jackie Robinson in last year’s 42, is even better as James Brown in Get On Up.
A sprawling biopic that took years to get made, director Tate Taylor guides Boseman and company back and forth throughout Brown’s life in what is a relentlessly entertaining, human portrayal of the Godfather of Soul.
It begins with a strung-out and used-up Brown in his hometown of Augusta, Georgia, where one of the most famous men in the world is agitated because someone utilized the bathroom in his storefront office, which is hosting a business seminar. Brown has become unhinged in, we find out later, what is a seminal moment in the latter part of his life -- a life that began with an awful childhood in which his mother (Viola Davis) left him to fend for himself with his seemingly abusive father who, in turn, handed over young James to his aunt (Octavia Spencer), where he was raised in a brothel.
To nobody’s surprise, James is eventually arrested for stealing a three-piece suit from a car and is given a lengthy sentence at a juvenile detention center. Turns out it’s the best thing that ever happened to James, because this is where he meets Bobby Byrd (Nelsan Ellis), the lead singer of a gospel group who performed at the detention center. Byrd convinces his mother to take James in, and that’s when James Brown and the Famous Flames are born, and Brown begins his ascent to super-stardom.
Boseman’s performance as James Brown may very well define his career. It is, in no uncertain terms, Oscar-worthy. It helps that he has several dynamic scene partners, most notably the surprising Jill Scott, who plays his wife, DeeDee Brown, and the aforementioned Nelsan Ellis and Viola Davis. Special note needs to be made of Brandon Smith. As a young Little Richard, he has just two scenes in the movie but when he’s on screen with Boseman, it’s like watching a young Pacino and De Niro act together. These two young men are that good.
The performance pieces in Get On Up, whether at The Apollo, or in the bar where James meets Little Richard are, for the most part, engrossing and in some cases, mesmerizing. Overall, Get On Up does what great cinema is supposed to do: it’s transformative, it’s engaging, and even when it’s rendering James Brown’s ugliest moments, it is beautiful.
ABC/Randy Holmes(WASHINGTON) -- Katy Perry took time out from her Prismatic tour Thursday evening to perform at a White House event that paid tribute to the Special Olympics.
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama hosted “A Celebration of Special Olympics and a Unified Generation” to mark the 46th anniversary of the Special Olympics.
“I love Katy Perry. She is just a wonderful person,” Obama said. “I’ve just met her mom and now I know why she is such a wonderful person, but I just want everybody to know she is on tour right now and so for her to take time out to do this is really special and so we really want to say thank you to her for doing this.”
A Special Olympian introduced Perry, who wore a floor-length blue sequined dress. She dedicated her first song, "Roar," to "those who inspire me." Her set list also included “Unconditionally.”
In addition to Perry, invited guests included elected officials, Special Olympians and a number of celebrities, including Stevie Wonder.
Perry resumes her Prismatic tour Friday in Boston. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio
Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Victoria's Secret(NEW YORK) -- Orlando Bloom's ex-wife, Miranda Kerr, is reportedly "embarrassed" by the altercation that took place between the actor and Justin Bieber in Ibiza, Spain on Wednesday morning.
A source tells E! News the 31-year-old supermodel is currently on vacation, and she would like to put all of the feuding and subsequent taunting on social media behind her.
The source explains, "Miranda is in Spain and Europe now and is vacationing with the family and relaxing."
The source adds, "Miranda wants all of this behind her and she just wants to move on from this and go about her life. She is very embarrassed about everything that has gone on."
Following Bloom and Bieber's run-in, which allegedly occurred after Bieber made a rude comment about Kerr, the supermodel didn't address the issue on social media. Instead, Kerr posted a photo on Instagram of herself walking with Flynn, her 3-year-old son with Bloom. She captioned the photo with a heart emoji.
Kevin Winter/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- After signing an open letter denouncing Israeli military action in Gaza, Javier Bardem has written another letter clarifying his position, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Bardem says his intention with the letter was to call for peace.
The open letter, which was printed in multiple Spanish media outlets earlier this week, was signed by a number of artists, including Bardem's wife, Penelope Cruz. The letter described Israel’s military action against the Gaza Strip as "genocide." Cruz issued a clarification of her own on Wednesday.
In his clarifying letter, Bardem states, "While I was critical of the Israeli military response, I have great respect for the people of Israel and deep compassion for their losses. I am now being labeled by some as anti-Semitic, as is my wife -- which is the antithesis of who we are as human beings. We detest anti-Semitism as much as we detest the horrible and painful consequences of war."
He writes, "I was raised to be against any act of violence, and the consequent suffering of humanity for it, regardless of religions, ethnicities and borders. Too many innocent Palestinian mothers have lost their children to this conflict. Too many innocent Israeli mothers share the same grief. There should not be any political reason that can justify such enormous pain on both sides. It’s my hope that leaders involved in this complicated struggle will heed the call of United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. In the name of humanity, the violence must stop.”
Bardem concludes, "Palestinians and Israelis in the region deserve to have their safety and human rights recognized and respected so in the near future they may find peace and co-existence, for themselves and their innocent children. So generations to come could bring hope, forgiveness and compassion for each other. This is the most basic and necessary way to peace for all of us."
Netflix(NEW YORK) -- Orange Is the New Black star Natasha Lyonne, who portrays recovering drug addict Nicky, is up against two co-stars -- Laverne Cox and Uzo Aduba -- in the outstanding guest performance category at the Emmys. Have the actresses made a pact in case one of them wins?
"Yes, they've agreed that if they win they'll dedicate the award to me. I've made it clear I will not do the same if I win," Lyonne quipped to People magazine. "No, no pacts yet. We're just so thrilled as a group at the 12 nominations. We're all just cogs in the wheel."
Being that it's her first time being nominated for an Emmy, Lyonne admitted she's a tad nervous, especially about what she plans to wear. "I hope that I look good. Honestly, I'm not going to lie, I really hope I don't blow it. And if I do blow it, I hope it's in such a mediocre way that nobody notices," she said. "...I want people to say, 'Oh my God, you look so great and comfortable!' At this point in my life, it's very important for me to be able to walk in my shoes."
The ladies are already filming season three of Orange Is the New Black, but Lyonne isn't revealing any spoilers. Instead, she told the magazine just three words: "So much bloodshed."
The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, hosted by Seth Meyers, will be held at the Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles on Monday, Aug. 25. NBC will air the ceremony live.
ABC/Randy Holmes(LOS ANGELES) -- Katy Perry has had some pretty high-profile romances with the likes of John Mayer and ex-husband Russell Brand.
But the pop singer, 29, said while she wants to have kids someday, she doesn't need a man to make it happen. She can do that on her own.
"I don't need a dude," she told Rolling Stone for its cover story, out August 1.
She also cited couples like Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka, who have twins Gideon Scott and Harper Grace.
"I mean, Neil and David, their twins are beautiful," she said. "It's 2014! We are living in the future; we don't need anything. I don't think I'll have to, but we'll see. I'm not anti-men. I love men. But there is an option if someone doesn't present himself."
While she has babies on the brain, she won't be having them anytime soon.
"I want to be doing that in the right time," she said. "And that's not in the next two years, you know? Maybe it's in a five-year plan, but I need to really be able to focus 100 percent of my attention on it."
Perry is still promoting her latest album Prism and said the rigors of the music industry aren't conducive just yet for her to have kids.
"I don't really want to take the child on tour. Not until, like, birth through five is over," she added.
ABC/Rick Rowell(LOS ANGELES) -- Not long ago, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie were working on projects on two different continents: Pitt was shooting Fury in London while Jolie was directing Unbroken in Australia.
However, they still found a way of staying close.
"We decided to be of that time when we could imagine he was in the European theater and I was in the Pacific theater and we wrote handwritten letters to each other that were very connecting for us," she told TV Week in Australia. "He was supportive from a distance and it was quite romantic in a way."
To Jolie, 39, Unbroken was a project that was worth sacrificing proximity to her love for. Based on the life of World War II veteran Louis Zamperini, it depicts the man's life from childhood, to his time in the Olympics, to the war and beyond. She even got to show a rough cut of the film to Zamperini before he died earlier this month.
"I brought him the film on my laptop in the hospital and it was amazing seeing someone at the end of their life watching their life unfold again, at the same time their body was shutting down," she said. "He wanted me to make the movie to show something hopeful about the strength of the human spirit that can pull us through. He reminded me to have my surgery in the year that I did and he reminded me to appreciate every day of my life."
ABC/Lorenzo Bevilaqua(NEW YORK) -- Chris Pratt and Anna Faris were excited to start a family.
"It started [for us] around the same time, and I don't think one of us wanted it any more than the other," Pratt, who stars in the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy, told People recently.
"She would say, 'How do you feel about that?' and I would say, '…I've been kind of thinking about that too! I think that'd be cool. Let’s make that happen.'"
Then their son, Jack, was born nine weeks premature in August 2012, and the couple felt helpless.
"We were scared for a long time. We prayed a lot," Pratt, 35, said about the month Jack spent in intensive care.
"It restored my faith in God, not that it needed to be restored, but it really redefined it," the actor continued. "The baby was so beautiful to us, and I look back at the photos of him and it must have been jarring for other people to come in and see him, but to us he was so beautiful and perfect."
Now, Jack is now approaching his second birthday and Pratt calls him "a fighter."
"He's amazing," Pratt says, laughing. "He's so open and there's no fear in him no matter what."
The proud father added, "He is so charming that my plan is to just let him take care of us as soon as he's old enough."
Pratt's Guardians of the Galaxy, backed by ABC News' parent company, Walt Disney, opens Friday.
Theo Wargo/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- In what looks like somewhat of a taunt, Justin Bieber took to Instagram Wednesday night to post a picture of Orlando Bloom looking emotional, or just rubbing his eye.
Nonetheless, in the picture, Bloom's head is down and he's rubbing his right eye like you would do if you were tearing up.
The post came hours after the two reportedly got into a fight in Ibiza, Spain, while both the Lord of the Rings actor and the "Baby" singer were at the same venue.
Video surfaced of Bloom, 37, taking a swing at Bieber, 20 -- then people stepping in to break it up.
This is the second picture Bieber posted involving Bloom following the altercation. Early Wednesday morning, he posted and took down a picture of Bloom's ex Miranda Kerr, who is reportedly the subject of the argument between the two celebrities.
In 2012, pictures surfaced of Bieber hanging out with Kerr, then Bloom's wife. Whether the two were taking things further than just being in each other's company was never confirmed by either Bieber or Kerr.
Bloom was also photographed with Bieber's ex Selena Gomez this past April, while the two looked to be taking a smoking break during the night. As with Bieber and Kerr, nothing has ever been confirmed about Gomez and Bloom, other than they hung out.
As of Thursday afternoon, the picture had mixed responses from Bieber's followers on Instagram, including some that asked the singer to take it down, while others defended him.
ABC/Rick Rowell(NEW YORK) -- The creator of The Amazing Race and an executive producer of The Lord of the Rings have created The Quest, a new fantasy reality series debuting Thursday on ABC that requires 12 contestants to wear medieval warrior outfits and compete in physical competitions as they navigate a scripted mythology to vie for the title of One True Hero.
The contestants are transported to the mystical kingdom of Everealm, which is actually a location in Austria, where they must complete challenges to save the kingdom or face elimination one by one.
The Quest doesn't have a traditional host. Instead, the contestants, dubbed Paladins, interact with actors playing roles in an ongoing story.
The show also features an array of magical creatures that are brought to life through animatronics, special effects and prosthetic makeup. The Quest airs Thursday at 8 p.m. Eastern time on ABC.
ABC/Jeff Neira(NEW YORK) -- Alicia Keys is pregnant with baby No. 2!
The Grammy-winning singer, 33, announced the news on her Instagram account, with she and her husband since 2010, Kasseem Dean, known widely as Swizz Beatz, both wearing white and embracing her baby bump.
"Happy Anniversary to the love of my life @therealswizzz !! And to make it even sweeter we've been blessed with another angel on the way!!" she revealed.
Thursday is also the couple's fourth wedding anniversary.
Keys continued to gush, "You make me happier than I have ever known! Here's to many many more years of the best parts of life!"
Keys and Beatz have a 3-year-old son Egypt. Beatz also has three more children from previous relationships.
Last October, Keys told ABC News that she would wait a bit to have her second child. “That’s down the road, definitely down the road,” she said.
Sonja Flemming/CBS(LOS ANGELES) -- The CBS hit comedy The Big Bang Theory has been forced to delay production of the upcoming eighth season because the five main cast members still are without contracts. Stars Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki, Kaley Cuoco, Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar have still not reached new deals with Warner Bros. Television, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
ABC News obtained a statement Wednesday from Warner Bros. Television that read, "Due to ongoing contract negotiations, production on The Big Bang Theory -- which was originally scheduled to begin today -- has been postponed."
The cast was scheduled to participate in their first "table read" of a new episode script on Wednesday. Deadline.com reports there will be no table read for The Big Bang Theory on Thursday as well. Industry observes note production will likely be delayed until a new deal is secured.
Parsons, Galecki and Cuoco are negotiating together and are asking $1 million per episode along with a percentage of the show's profits. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the trio currently earns $325,000 per episode. Helberg and Nayyar are negotiating together and are also asking for significant raises. Co-stars Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch have already agreed to new deals with Warner Bros. Television.
Buena Vista(NEW YORK) -- Guardians of the Galaxy hits theaters Friday, and the movie has been generating massive buzz -- and positive reviews.
Based on a relatively obscure comic that launched in 1969, the movie was considered a gamble, as its titular quintet of unlikely heroes -- Chris Pratt's Peter Quill, Zoe Saldana's Gamora, Dave Bautista's Drax, the Vin Diesel-voiced tree-man Groot, and Bradley Cooper's Rocket Raccoon -- aren't as familiar to most people as say The Hulk or Spider-Man.
Guardians director and co-writer James Gunn tells ABC News Radio, "Making a movie with characters that people weren't as familiar with was actually pretty freeing. Because I got to create them from the ground up for the cinematic universe. And yes I love Marvel comics, and so there was a lot of the spirit of those comics that I wanted to keep. But I also had the freedom to do what I wanted in film form."
While the summer box office numbers are down around 20 percent compared to last year, ABC News Radio asked Gunn if Guardians could rescue Hollywood's bottom line as well as the galaxy. It isn't a fair question, the filmmaker says.
"Disney's doing pretty amazingly well this year, that's who this movie's going to help. It's not going to help all the other studios that are out there making movies that aren't making any money."
The movie, which also stars Michael Rooker, Glenn Close, John C. Reilly, Benicio Del Toro, Karen Gillan and Lee Pace, has already been given the go-ahead for a 2017 sequel.
ABC/RICK ROWELL(NEW YORK) -- Penélope Cruz has issued a statement in an effort to clarify an open letter she signed with husband Javier Bardem that described Israel’s military action against the Gaza Strip as “genocide.”
According to E! News, the open letter, which was published Tuesday in several Spanish newspapers and also signed by director Pedro Almodovar, stated that “Gaza is living through horror these days, besieged and attacked by land, sea and air.” The letter claimed Palestinians are being denied water, electricity [and] free movement to their hospitals, schools and fields while the international community does nothing.” The letter called for an end to “the genocide perpetrated by the Israeli occupation army in the Gaza strip against Palestinian civilians.”
In her clarifying statement, Cruz explains, "I don't want to be misunderstood on this important subject. I'm not an expert on the situation and I'm aware of the complexity of it.” She goes on to write, "My only wish and intention in signing that group letter is the hope that there will be peace in both Israel and Gaza. I am hopeful all parties can agree to a cease fire and there are no more innocent victims on either side of the border. I wish for unity, and peace...I believe in a civilization that can be capable of bringing the courage to have a world where humans can live side by side."