Welcome back, Studio Coffee Folks! It was a pretty quiet weekend on the entertainment front, but rest assured we’ve got some worthwhile headlines. First off, SXSW cancels this year’s events due to coronavirus concerns, then we’ll talk about the sad news of Max von Sydow’s passing. After that, it’s time to talk about James Wan’s Universal deal to make a monster movie. And, speaking of, Disney is putting out a Beauty and the Beast spin-off series, because why not? Then, we’ve got one Psych related casting announcement and a trailer to get the work week going.

Let’s get started!

SXSW is the latest coronavirus cancellation

SXSW, in spite of its determination, is cancelled. The news came in just a few hours after Friday’s Studio Coffee Run, in which the most recent word was that the event would forge onward, through the risk of coronavirus infection. The hosting city of Austin thought differently, coming down with the decision to drop. SXSW said in a statement that it’s devastated to make the announcement, given that “the show must go on” is “in our DNA.”

SXSW hopes to reschedule and commits to an online experience and assures registrants and clients it will be in touch soon.

The Exorcist and The Seventh Seal’s Max von Sydow passes

max von sydow
Photo by Mario Antonio Pena Zapatería/Wikimedia Commons.

Max von Sydow passed away at 90 years old on Sunday, March 8. The Swedish-born French actor is remembered for The Seventh Seal and The Exorcist, as well as Flash Gordon. More recently, he made appearances as Lor San Tekka in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and the Three-Eye Raven in Game of Thrones.

Von Sydow garnered two Oscar nominations in his time: one for Pelle the Conqueror and another for his supporting role in Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close. His final role will be an upcoming drama currently in post-production called Echoes of the Past.

James Wan plans to work monster magic at Universal

james wan
Photo by Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons.

Renowned horror director James Wan is producing a monster movie for Universal. It’s untitled as of now, though Supernatural writer and EP Robbie Thompson is tagging along to script. THR’s sources are saying that, whatever it is, it will be in the vein of Universal’s classic monster movies with a modern twist. For example, look no further than The Invisible Man, which is in theaters now.

For this project, we’ll follow a group of teens as they deal with the realization that their neighbor is creating a monster in his basement (is he a doctor named Frank?) Aside from that, all we know is that this and Invisible Man are both part of Universal’s new filmmaker first approach. Rather than mashing every monster into a cinematic universe, the studio hopes to tell independent stories from creators including Dexter Fletcher, Paul Feig and Elizabeth Banks. Wan produces the upcoming project with his Atomic Monster banner.

Gaston and LeFou’s origin stories unveiled in a Beauty and the Beast spin-off

beauty and the beast spin-off
Luke Evans will return as Gaston in the BEAUTY AND THE BEAST spin-off .

Speaking of devoted cinematic universes, Beauty and the Beast now has a spin-off over at Disney+. It’s a prequel series meant to tell the origin stories of Gaston and LeFou, a sentence you probably never anticipated reading or existing. Josh Gad and Luke Evans are set to reprise their roles from the 2017 live-action remake, with Once Upon a Time creators Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz also attached. It’s especially appropriate for Kitsis and Horowitz, who spent a considerable amount of time on a show themed after Disney’s various properties.

The Beauty and the Beast spin-off is a limited, six episode affair. It’s still in early development at this point, but the scripts from Gad, Kitsis and Horowitz are said to explore more of the universe.

Geechee brings Dulé Hill into the fold

Dulé Hill, Psych’s beloved Gus, is the latest addition to the cast of Geechee, the supernatural thriller from AGC Studios. Tthe general premise of the movie involves a scientist moving to an island whose inhabitants are descended from African slaves. The supernatural comes in here, as the spirits begin to torment the scientist and her son, driving them to madness. Dubois Ashong makes his writer/directorial debut on the project, which stars Andrea Riesborough (Birdman). Hill’s role is unconfirmed for the time being.

HBO’s next thriller drama has a seasonal breakdown 

Jude Law is taking off his holy vestments to go island hopping in his new HBO series, The Third Day. In which, his character visits an island off the British coast and meets a community of people intent on protecting their home. Though, based on the trailer, it seems Law is going to have a hard time leaving. That’s all in the show’s first half, called ‘Summer.’ In the second half, ‘Winter,’ he’s joined by fellow outsider Naomie Harris in what erupts into a struggle to survive. Felix Barrett and Dennis Kelly created The Third Day, which premieres on May 11.

That’s a wrap for this week! I’ve gotta go finish my Samurai Jack rewatch, but we’ll catch you back here next time!