Comedy ‘Doula’ Available for Digital Purchase and Rental June 20

The comedy Doula will be available for digital rental or purchase June 20 from Universal Pictures.

Troian Bellisario (“Pretty Little Liars”) stars in the film about a pregnant couple who reluctantly hires a male doula.

After dating for a matter of months, thirtysomethings Deb (Bellisario) and Silvio (Arron Shiver) are expecting their first child. When their elderly midwife Penka passes away suddenly, Silvio makes the hasty decision to hire Penka’s son, Sascha (Will Greenberg), as their live-in doula. Deb is nonplussed, as Silvio didn’t consult her before hiring, but before long, Sascha’s unconventional style wins her over. As Deb and Sascha grow closer, and the pregnancy nears its inevitable conclusion, Silvio starts to feel like the odd man out. His continued efforts to exert control over the pregnancy lead to a blow-up fight in which he forces Deb to choose between him and Sascha.

Rounding out the cast is Chris Pine, who stars as Deb’s doctor, with Amanda Walsh, Ally Maki, Elyse Levesque, Alex McKenna and Robert Baker.

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Doula marks the first feature film produced by Pine and his new production company Barry Linen Motion Pictures, produced in association with Vacation Theory and Universal Pictures Content Group.

“Making Doula was a dream come true,” Pine said in a statement. “It’s written by one of our best friends, directed by one of our best friends, starring a bunch of our best friends. The film was a ton of fun to make and we hope audiences see that when they’re watching it.”

‘Peace by Chocolate’ Headed to Theaters April 29, On Demand June 10 From Level 33

The Canadian dramatic comedy Peace by Chocolate will be released in theaters April 29 and on demand June 10 from Level 33 Entertainment.

In the film based on the true story, when a Syrian family flees civil war to small-town Canada, the son is torn between his dreams of becoming a doctor and helping his father rebuild his suddenly burgeoning chocolate business.

Directed by Jonathan Keijser, the film stars Hatem Ali, Ayham Abou Ammar, Yara Sabri, Kathryn Kirkpatrick, Mark Hachem, Najla Al-Khamri and Mark Camacho.

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Peace by Chocolate, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, won the Jury Award, Best Director, Feature Film, Jonathan Keijser at the Cordillera International Film Festival; Jury Award, Best Actor, Hatem Ali at the Scottsdale International Film Festival; Audience Award, Best Narrative Feature Film, at the Woods Hole Film Festival; Audience Award, Best Narrative Feature, at the Naples International Film Festival; Jury Award, World Lens Award, at the Port Townsend Film Festival; Jury Prize, Spotlight Feature Award, at the Loudoun Arts Film Festival; Jury Award at the Italian Contemporary Film Festival; and Audience Choice Award at the Heartland International Film Festival.

 

Maya Rudolph Comedy Series ‘Loot’ to Bow on Apple TV+ June 24

The Maya Rudolph comedy series “Loot” will premiere on Apple TV+ June 24.

Starring and executive produced by Emmy Award winner Rudolph (“Saturday Night Live,” “Bridesmaids”) and from Emmy Award-winning creators Alan Yang (“Little America,” “Master of None”) and Matt Hubbard (“30 Rock,” “Forever”), the 10-episode workplace comedy will debut globally with the first three episodes followed by one new episode weekly, every Friday.

In addition to Rudolph, the “Loot” ensemble cast is led by stars Michaela Jaé Rodriguez (“Pose”), Ron Funches (“Undateable”), Nat Faxon (“Married”) and Joel Kim Booster (‘Sunnyside”).

In “Loot,” billionaire Molly Novak (Rudolph) has a dream life, complete with private jets, a sprawling mansion, and a gigayacht — anything her heart desires. But when her husband of 20 years betrays her, she spirals publicly, becoming fuel for tabloid fodder. She’s reaching rock bottom when she learns, to her surprise, that she has a charity foundation run by the no-nonsense Sofia Salinas (Rodriguez), who pleads with Molly to stop generating bad press. With her devoted assistant Nicholas (Kim Booster) by her side, and with the help of Sofia and team — including mild-mannered accountant Arthur (Faxon) and her optimistic, pop-culture-loving cousin Howard (Funches) — Molly embarks on a journey of self-discovery. Giving back to others might be what she needs to get back to herself.

The project marks the second collaboration between Apple TV+ and Yang following the the three-time Independent Spirit Award, BAFTA and NAACP Image Award nominated anthology series “Little America.”

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Vudu Launches April Fool’s Day Comedy Sale

Vudu, Fandango’s transactional video-on-demand service, is launching an April Fool’s Day weekend sale (through April 4) on classic comedy films.

The service is offering sales on titles such as Mike Judge’s IdiocracyRomy & Michele’s High School Reunion and Airplane.  Comedy movie bundles on sale include the “Horrible Bosses” movies, the “Miss Congeniality” bundle, the Eddie Murphy four-film collection and the “Naked Gun” trilogy.

Titles are discounted up to 50% off regular prices.

Each week throughout the month of April, Vudu will host various sales devoted to comedic subgenres such as action comedies, raunchy comedies, horror comedies and family-oriented comedies.

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‘Beverly Hills Cop II’ Headed to 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray May 17

The Eddie Murphy action-comedy Beverly Hills Cop II will be released on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray May 17 from Paramount Home Entertainment for its 35th anniversary.

Directed by Tony Scott, who followed up Top Gun with this sequel, Beverly Hills Cop II was originally released on May 20, 1987. Produced by Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer, it was a box office success, earning more than $153 million domestically and becoming the No. 1 film of 1987. The movie also earned Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations for Best Original Song for “Shakedown.”

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In the film, Axel Foley (Murphy) is back where he doesn’t belong, this time going “deep, deep, deep undercover” to stop a gang of international munitions smugglers. Also returning are Judge Reinhold and John Ashton as Murphy’s crime-busting sidekicks.

The release includes Dolby Vision and HDR-10 and Dolby 5.1 DTS Master Audio.

Indie Family Drama ‘The Good Life’ Available on Demand April 15 From Level 33

The independent family drama The Good Life will debut in theaters and on demand April 15 from Level 33 Entertainment.

In the film, when Olive, 35, discovers her boyfriend cheating, she decides to escape to her family’s home in Greece to mend her broken heart. There she is met with hostility from the local villagers who band together to make her life unbearable.

That’s when Olive meets Jet, a 9-year-old boy who comes to her rescue. He becomes her guide, negotiator and friend, teaching Olive how to live “the good life.”

The film is directed by Bonnie Rodini.

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Troma’s Horror Comedy ‘The Good Exorcist’ Due on Blu-ray March 22 From MVD

The horror comedy The Good Exorcist (2017) will be released on Blu-ray Disc March 22 from Troma Films and MVD Entertainment Group.

In the film — which pokes fun at the exorcism horror sub-genre — after a ranch in Texas is befallen to a mysterious, demonic presence, it is up to an eccentric, wandering priest to find answers and dispel the darkness. As he digs deeper he soon finds that he may be in over his head and out of time.

The film is directed by Josh Stifter (Greywood’s Plot, Scumbag), and the production of The Good Exorcist was featured on the TV series “Rebel Without a Crew.” It features music by The Pentagrammas, Crowz & Hoggz, Mommy Sez No and Joe Shields.

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The film won the 2018 Best Texas Narrative at the Austin Revolution Film Festival.

‘Game 6’ and ‘Modern Vampires’ Due on Blu-ray March 22 From Ronin Flix and MVD

The comedic sports drama Game 6 and the horror film Modern Vampires are being released on Blu-ray Disc March 22 from Ronin Flix and MVD Entertainment Group.

In Game 6 (2005), New York playwright Nicky Rogan (Michael Keaton) is a playwright desperate for another success. From the outset, things begin to go wrong. His daughter informs him that his wife wants a divorce. His mistress notifies him that his lead actor has a parasite in his brain and can’t remember his lines, and an old acquaintance regales him with tales of Steven Schwimmer, a new and powerful critic who is so poisonous, so destructive, that the New York theater community lives in terror. Although Nicky has grown up in New York, he is a die-hard Red Sox fan and the film is set on October 25, 1986, the day of the most Shakespearian of sporting events, Game 6 of the World Series. At the last minute, Nicky decides to skip his opening night in order to watch his beloved team. The film also stars Robert Downy Jr., Griffin Dunne and Catherine O’Hara. Special features include a making-of featurette and audio commentary by director Michael Hoffman.

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In Modern Vampires (1998), Los Angeles has a discreet community of tortured, bloodthirsty creatures of the night. But when a mysterious vampire (Natasha Gregson Wagner, Lost Highway) enters the scene, the Count wants this blood-sucking seductress eliminated before her rampage of death exposes the cult. Her only chance at immortality lies in the fangs of Dallas (Casper Van Dien, Starship Troopers). But when a distraught mortal, Dr. Frederick van Helsing (Rod Steiger, The Amityville Horror), seeks revenge on the vampires that damned his son, he vows to kill them all, slowly. Special features include a behind-the-scenes featurette, a new interview with director Richard Elfman, and audio commentary with director Elfman and actor Casper Van Dien.

Disney+ to Stream Comedy Series ‘The Muppets Mayhem’

Disney+ has greenlighted “The Muppets Mayhem,” a comedy series starring the Muppets.

The series follows the Electric Mayhem Band as it records its first-ever album. Lilly Singh (“A Little Late with Lilly Singh,” “Dollface”) plays the (human) lead role of Nora, the junior A&R executive tasked with managing and wrangling the mayhem as the old-school Muppet band comes face to face with the current-day music scene.

The series was developed by Adam F. Goldberg, Bill Barretta and Jeff Yorkes based on characters created by Jim Henson. It is written by Adam F. Goldberg (“The Goldbergs”), Bill Barretta (“The Muppets,” “Muppets Haunted Mansion”) and Jeff Yorkes. The executive producers are Goldberg, Barretta, Michael Bostick and Kris Eber. Yorkes is a co-executive producer. The Muppets Studio’s David Lightbody and Leigh Slaughter are also executive producers.

The Disney Branded Television series is produced by ABC Signature and The Muppets Studio for Disney+.

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“The Muppets are renowned for quality, creativity and unrivaled, fun storytelling for the whole family,” Ayo Davis, president of Disney Branded Television, said in a statement. “We are thrilled to have Adam, Bill and Jeff at the helm to bring all of these iconic and great new characters to life in fresh and dynamic ways.”

“Adam F. Goldberg is our resident Muppet enthusiast at Signature and getting to play in the sandbox with Bill, a longtime Muppet performer, as well as these beloved characters was a dream come true for him, Bill and Jeff,” Jonnie Davis, president of ABC Signature, said in a statement. “Their take is fresh, fun, musical and, of course, hilarious. We couldn’t be happier to be the studio that is helping them get the band back together.”

“We are so excited to bring the story of The Electric Mayhem Band to the front and center of this new series. They’ve been entertaining audiences since ‘The Muppet Show,’ which debuted 45 years ago, so it’s wonderful that these characters are finally getting to play lead rather than supporting roles,” said David Lightbody, executive producer and SVP of Disney Live Entertainment and The Muppets Studio.

Season Two of ‘The Great’ Available on DVD April 26

Season two of the comedic series “The Great” arrives on DVD April 26 from Paramount Home Entertainment.

Season two of the series, streaming on Hulu in the United States, is available now for purchase on digital platforms.

Created and executive produced by Academy Award and Golden Globe nominee Tony McNamara (The Favourite​), the satirical comedy is loosely based on the rise of Catherine the Great (Elle Fanning) from outsider to the longest reigning female ruler in Russia’s history. With Fanning and Nicholas Hoult reprising their Golden Globe-nominated roles, season two finds Catherine finally taking the Russian throne for her own. But if she thought coup-ing her husband was difficult, it’s nothing compared to the realities of liberating a country that doesn’t want to be.  She must battle her court, her team, even her own mother (played by two-time Emmy Award-winning actress Gillian Anderson) in a bid to bring the Enlightenment to Russia.

The four-disc DVD set features all 10 episodes from season two, plus deleted scenes and a blooper reel.

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The series, which has been renewed for a third season, has garnered multiple Emmy, SAG Award, Critics Choice Awards and Golden Globe nominations. It has also been nominated for four Writers Guild Awards, with Tony McNamara winning for Episodic Comedy in 2021.