Dylan Minnette and Katherine Langford in 13 Reasons Why on Netflix.
Fess up: 13 Reasons Why
Who knew teen fiction could be so morbid? The new Netflix series 13 Reasons Why, based on the bestselling novel by Jay Asher, follows Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) as he returns home from school and finds a box addressed to him on his porch. Inside are cassette tapes (do teens know what those are?) recorded by his classmate and crush, Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford), right. Hannah committed suicide two weeks earlier, and on tape she explains there are 13 reasons why she ended her life. Clay might be one of them. The tapes roughly chronicle the last year of Hannah's life and each side shows how one person played a part in grinding down her will to live. Now streaming on Netflix.
When it came time to book guests for this year's Sunscreen Film Festival in St. Petersburg, organizers turned to one of TV's biggest hunks.
Dylan McDermott (The Practice, American Horror Story) is among the celebrity guests at this year's 12th annual Sunscreen, returning April 27-30 to theaters and venues around downtown St. Petersburg. He'll be on hand supporting the festival's opening-night selection Blind, co-starring Alec Baldwin and Demi Moore, and web series Sugar, produced in conjunction with students and alumni of the Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota.
Another celebrity guest is actress Daphne Zuniga, who will appear at a 30th anniversary screening of the Mel Brooks comedy Spaceballs.
Other highlights at Sunscreen 2017:
-- Albion: The Enchanted Stallion, a family fantasy film starring John Cleese, Debra Messing, Jennifer Morrison and Stephen Dorff, will close the festival.
-- A retrospective screening of 1952's The Greatest Show on Earth to commemorate the closing of the Sarasota-based Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus after 146 years. …
Duncan McClellan Gallery in St. Petersburg sent us this photo of its new Art Zipline. A nice Photoshop job?
Imagine yourself on a zipline. Fun, right?
Even better, imagine yourself on a zipline over a gallery filled with fragile glass sculptures. Perhaps you've got a nice, fragile piece of glass artwork clutched in your hand as you zip along over the Warehouse Arts District in St. Petersburg. Because nothing enriches an engagement with fine art like combining it with some adrenaline-pumping action sports, right?
That's the essence of the "first-ever Art Zipline," a new zipline over the Duncan McClellan Gallery and connecting to the Arts Xchange, according to a "news release" from the Duncan McClellan Gallery that was sent out this week.
Yeah, we were a little confused too. Then we saw the end of the gallery's announcement, directing people to visit AprilFools.com for more information.
"The zoning department for the City of St. Petersburg has approved the DMG's plan for the ArtZipline® as yet another unique way to tour St. Petersburg's popular art center!," the announcement reads. "From the Gallery, the program participants will zipline down the Pinellas Trail, whizzing by great sculptures on either side..." …
The Lion King, released in 1994 and one of the highest-grossing animated films of all time, is one of many Disney animated movies getting a live-action makeover, and Director Jon Favreau wants Beyoncé.
While the upcoming live-action reboot doesn't have a release date yet, Donald Glover is already on board to voice Simba and James Earl Jones is reprising his role as Simba's father, Mufasa.
And according to Variety, the studio wants Beyoncé to voice Nala, the lioness who marries Simba and one day becomes queen.
The singer is pregnant with twins and had to cancel an upcoming Coachella performance. Favreau is reportedly willing to work around her schedule.
Beyoncé has not made a decision yet.
If she goes for it, this would be her first film role since Fox's 2013 animated film Epic.
Stephen Hawking. For over 30 years, the English theoretical physicist, cosmologist and author has used the same trademark computerized voice. Seems like Hawking was ready for an upgrade, because this past week he auditioned A-list stars to be his new voice in a hilarious video in support of Red Nose Day.
In video auditions for charity, stars like Anna Kendrick, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Miss Piggy and Rebel Wilson all tried to convince Hawking their voice could match his intellect. Even Eddie Redmayne, who won an Oscar for portraying Hawking in The Theory of Everything, auditioned for the role. "So ... what is it? Like a sequel?" he joked.
Hawking offered up funny quips between video auditions, dismissing the mash-up of talent with just plain "no" or "I would sound like an idiot if that was my voice."
John Boyega, one of the stars of Star Wars Episode VII, said "I feel like I'm the best man for the job. I've been to space before. You talk about space. I've lived it."
It wasn't enough to impress Hawking.
Even Liam Neeson's Taken monologue also wasn't enough to win the gig. …
Star Wars Celebration is expected to bring nearly 30,000 people to Orlando this year.
Tis the season for cosplay and geeky gatherings. It's comic convention season, and that means for the next five months Tampa Bay and Central Florida host thousands of nerds.
Get your lightsabers, capes, and Batmobiles ready, the fun starts this weekend.
Saturday and Sunday, the Tampa Convention Center brings together players of all ages for the new Malooga Con.
The convention is an all-local endeavor created by people who saw a lack of focus on gaming in Tampa Bay.
"We started as Malooga Games in 2015," Part owner and spokesperson Chris Gazzanigo said. "But we met some amazing people who wanted it bigger, wanted an event."
The convention is a celebration of types of games, from board games and cards to video games and virtual reality. Malooga Con boasts a 10,000 square-foot gaming arena with Xbox challenges, virtual reality equipment, full-size flight simulators, arcade cabinets and even a foam sword fighting area.
What is it: A Tampa Bay-based gaming convention for fans of all games, from tabletop boards to high tech virtual reality and video games.
Fandom: Any and all gamers. N00bs welcome, we guess.
When: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Sunday …
Jimmy Fallon brings his Tonight Show to Universal Orlando April 3-6, celebrating the opening of Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon.
Next week Universal Orlando hosts one of the kings of late night TV, and he's bringing a slew of stars with him.
Jimmy Fallon and his Tonight Show entourage descend on the theme park for a four-day-long celebration of his new ride, Race Through New York starring Jimmy Fallon.
Fallon's guests for the taping of the NBC show include Vin Diesel, Shaquille O'Neal, Pitbull, Blake Shelton, Scott Eastwood, Dwayne Johnson, Nicole Richie, Flo Rida, Jay Leno and Jason Derulo.
Diesel, Eastwood and Johnson all star in The Fate of the Furious, the eight installment of the Fast and the Furious franchise. Maybe they'll spill some secrets from the set.
The ride is a 3D attraction giving guests the ultimate Tonight Show experience with show segments like Hashtag the Panda, and then races them through iconic New York City sites like the Statue of Liberty.
Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon opens April 6. Visit universalorlando.com for more information.
American Playboy chronicles the life of Hugh Hefner and the iconic Playboy brand he created.
American Playboy: The Hugh Hefner Story: It seems like everyone is getting a biopic lately. The 13-episode Amazon Original series is inspired by more than 17,000 hours of footage and more than 2,000 scrapbooks from Hefner's personal collection. The series chronicles Hefner's life and his iconic Playboy brand, from postwar America, the launch of Playboy magazine and the over six decades of his career. The series stars Matt Whelan as the bunny-creator himself. April 7
The Handmaiden: The lauded original movie is adapted from the novel Fingersmith by Sarah Waters and stars Ha Jung-woo, Kim Min-hee, Jo Jin-woong and Kim Tae-ri. The film centers around a scrappy female pickpocket and a charming con man. The thief worms her way into the home of a Japanese heiress as a servant, but her intentions are much more sinister. April 13
Titus Welliver is Detective Harry Bosch.
Bosch Season 3: The Emmy-nominated series based on Michael Connelly's novels is back for a third season with Detective Harry Bosch (Titus Welliver) a suspect in a murder. April 21 …
This championship belt will be awarded at the El Jefe Burrito Eating Championship.
If you're interested in claiming the Tampa Bay area's first championship belt in burrito eating -- yes, it's an actual, physical, WWE-style championship belt -- you've got until Friday to qualify.
The El Jefe Burrito Eating Championship will be held April 6 in observance of National Burrito Day, local Mexican chain restaurant Taco Bus announced.
The eating competition happens at 6 p.m. at the original Taco Bus location at 913 Hillsborough Ave. in Tampa. The fastest competitor to take down an entire, 2.5-pound "El Jefe" burrito (a beast so massive it features two tortillas), will be rewarded with the grand prize, $250 and the championship belt. There are also cash prizes for second through fourth place.
Those who want to compete must qualify before the end of the day Friday by finishing an El Jefe in under 15 minutes at any Taco Bus location, and submitting a qualifier form at the restaurant. Ten qualifiers with the fastest times will be invited to compete on April 6.
You'll have to pay a hefty $12.99 for that hefty El Jefe burrito in order to qualify, though Taco Bus said it will donate a portion of the money raised by the contest to local first responders charities.
The most amusing thing about Kang and Cho might be that they've never been to Tampa or even tasted a Tampa Cuban. That will all change this weekend when they compete in the Cuban Sandwich Festival in Ybor City.
You can get all the details on the Cuban Sandwich Festival here.
Elisabeth Moss stars in Hulu's newest original series, The Handmaid's Tale.
Ferris Bueller's Day Off: Giving students tips on skipping school since 1986. April 1
Saturday Night Fever: Whether you're a brother or whether you're a mother, Saturday Night Fever still has you stayin' alive. April 1
Dominic Cooper as Jesse Custer in Preacher.
Preacher Season 1: I stand by my review of the sepia-toned Southern thriller from when it premiered last year: It's crude, offensive, graphic and violent. Yet it's one of the best television adaptations of literature I've seen in years. April 5
Johnny Tsunami: Almost 20 years ago (*spits out drink*) Johnny Tsunami graced the airwaves, giving us ‘90s kids another Disney Channel Original Movie instant classic.Go big or go home! April 19
Wayward Pines Season 2: Two season later, we still aren't quite sure what Wayward Pines is all about. It is an M. Night Shyamalan adaptation, after all. But we definitely love its creepy vibes. April 25 …
Wow, who knew booking a hugely acclaimed and admired Oscar winner would prove to be so popular?
Do to "extremely popular demand," the University of South Florida is moving its April 4 lecture with actress Viola Davis (Fences, The Help, How to Get Away With Murder) from the Marshall Student Center to the USF Sun Dome. Students who have already secured a ticket are confirmed for a seat at the new venue. All remaining student tickets will be released at 3 p.m. today via this link.
The lectures are free and open to the public, with priority given to students. Considering all the student tickets got snapped up almost immediately, this should allow a few more people from outside the university inside to hear Davis speak.
Erica Tremblay as Bunny, Matreya Scarrwener as Dora, Stephen Schneider as Ben, Jenna Elfman as Alice and Nicholas Coombe as Andy in Imaginary Mary.
Cake Wars, 8 p.m., Food Network: Cake artists battle for the change to have their creations as the centerpiece of a party celebrating the new movie Smurfs: The Lost Village. Warning: Lots of blue icing ahead.
Breaking Bad marathon, starts at 9 a.m., AMC: To celebrate the return of Better Call Saul's third season April 10, AMC airs "Best of Saul Goodman" and "Best of Gus Fring" during two Breaking Bad marathon Mondays. The shuffle of episodes featuring the best of Saul (Bob Odenkirk) starts today, and the best of Gus marathon airs April 3.
Dead Reckoning: War & Justice, 8 p.m., PBS: A three-part examination of the prosecution of war crimes, including genocide and ethnic cleansing, since the end of World War II.
Samantha Morton stars in Harlots on Hulu.
SERIES PREMIERE: Harlots, midnight, Hulu: Margaret Wells (Samantha Morton) struggles with being a mother to two daughters and a brothel owner in 18th century London. In 1763, London is a city built on flesh, where one in five women sells sex for money. It's a battle of the brothels in Hulu's newest original series.
The Feed is your source for pop culture commentary, television recaps, book talk, art tidbits, internet goldmines and anything you're obsessed with today. From the Tampa Bay Times' arts and entertainment writers.