‘Cats’ and ‘Downton Abbey’: Universal Studios presents upcoming films

The films were announced at the CinemaCon 2019, the official convention of the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) at Caesars Palace, Monday, April 1, 2019, in Las Vegas. (AP)
Updated 04 April 2019

‘Cats’ and ‘Downton Abbey’: Universal Studios presents upcoming films

  • Among the most anticipated releases is “Downton Abbey,” the big screen sequel to the adventures of an aristocratic family
  • “Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw,” was also announced at the event

LAS VEGAS: Big screen versions of the celebrated musical “Cats” and TV series “Downton Abbey” and another entry in the “Fast and Furious” franchise: Universal Studios on Wednesday presented its forthcoming releases at CinemaCon in Los Vegas.
Explosions, epic brawls and of course lots and lots of cars: “Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw,” with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Jason Statham, is faithful to the many movies that preceded it in the franchise.
But in the latest edition, Johnson also pays tribute to his Samoan origins, performing a ritual Siva Tau dance on screen.
“I’m so proud to show my culture as well,” he said.
The villain of the film is Idris Elba, who will also feature in “Cats.” In addition to the British star, the musical’s cast includes Oscar winners Judi Dench and Jennifer Hudson, as well as singer Taylor Swift.
Another Oscar winner, Octavia Spencer, makes her horror debut with “Ma,” which shows “how the effects of childhood bullying last for a long time and how long revenge can wait,” she said.
Among the most anticipated releases is “Downton Abbey,” the big screen sequel to the adventures of the aristocratic Crawley family, which kept many viewers spellbound for six seasons.
This time around, the family is awaiting a visit from the king and queen of England.


No-go for Joe Exotic: Donald Trump’s pardon list omits ‘Tiger King’

Updated 20 January 2021

No-go for Joe Exotic: Donald Trump’s pardon list omits ‘Tiger King’

  • Joe Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, was sentenced in January 2020 to 22 years in federal prison
OKLAHOMA CITY: One name missing in President Donald Trump’s flurry of pardons is “Tiger King” Joe Exotic.
His team was so confident in a pardon that they’d readied a celebratory limousine and a hair and wardrobe team to whisk away the zookeeper-turned-reality-TV-star, who is now serving a 22-year federal prison sentence in Texas. But he wasn’t on the list announced Wednesday morning.
Joe Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, was sentenced in January 2020 to 22 years in federal prison for violating federal wildlife laws and for his role in a failed murder-for-hire plot targeting his chief rival, Carole Baskin, who runs a rescue sanctuary for big cats in Florida. Baskin was not harmed.
Maldonado-Passage, who has maintained his innocence, was also sentenced for killing five tigers, selling tiger cubs and falsifying wildlife records. A jury convicted him in April 2019.
In his pardon application filed in September, Maldonado-Passage’s attorneys argued that he was “railroaded and betrayed” by others. Maldonado-Passage, 57, is scheduled to be released from custody in 2037, but his attorneys said in the application that “he will likely die in prison” because of health concerns.
Maldonado-Passage’s legal team did not immediately respond to a request for comment early Wednesday.
The blond mullet-wearing zookeeper, known for his expletive-laden rants on YouTube and a failed 2018 Oklahoma gubernatorial campaign, was prominently featured in the popular Netflix documentary “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.”