In pictures: Hollywood actors who played two superheroes!

1. Ryan Reynolds

Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern (left) and Deadpool. Pic/YouTubeRyan Reynolds as Green Lantern (left) and Deadpool. Pic/YouTube

After portraying Marvel Comics’ Deadpool in ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ (2009), the actor played the superhero once again in the spin-off ‘Deadpool’. (Read ‘Deadpool’ review) ‘Deadpool’ was in development for over 10 years. After being cast as ‘Deadpool’, Ryan Reynolds became interested in the character on finding out that in ‘Cable & Deadpool’, Deadpool refers to his scarred appearance as ‘Ryan Reynolds crossed with a Shar-Pei’. Critics and the audience have lauded Reynolds’ performance in the film which is as much a unique and blissful laugh-riot as it is an action-propelled spectacle. However, his tryst with the DC Universe didn’t go down so well in 2011 with ‘Green Lantern‘ receiving flak from critics and comic book fans.

2. Chris Evans

Chris Evans as Human Torch (left) and Captain America. Pic/Santa Banta
Chris Evans as Human Torch (left) and Captain America. Pic/Santa Banta

Chris Evans played Human Torch in the superhero film ‘Fantastic Four’ (2005) based on Marvel Comics team of the same name. He reprised his role in the sequel ‘Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer’ (2007). Evans also bagged the role of Marvel comic book character, Captain America, giving his career a boost. He made his debut as Captain America in ‘Captain America: The First Avenger’ and has reprised his role in 3 other films after ‘Captain America: Civil War’.

3. Ben Affleck

Ben Affleck as Daredevil (left) and Batman. Pic/Santa Banta and YouTubeBen Affleck as Daredevil (left) and Batman. Pic/Santa Banta and YouTube

Daredevil‘, based on the blind Marvel Comics superhero, marked the beginning of the Ben Affleck’s career downturn in 2003. And the release of ‘Gigli’ the same year didn’t help make things any better. However, Affleck has resurrected his career since with films like ‘Hollywoodland’, ‘Gone Baby Gone’, ‘Argo and ‘Gone Girl’ to his credit. In 2016, Ben Affleck was seen playing the caped crusader, Batman, from DC Comics in Zack Snyder’s ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’.

Watch the trailer of ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’

4. Brandon Routh

Brandon Routh as Superman (Pic/Santa Banta) and The Atom (Pic/Brandon Routh's Twitter account)Brandon Routh as Superman (Pic/Santa Banta) and The Atom (Pic/Brandon Routh’s Twitter account)

Brandon Routh gained recognition after he portrayed the iconic Superman in Bryan Singer’s ‘Superman Returns’ in 2006. He returned to the DC Universe as The Atom (Ray Palmer) in the third season of TV series ‘Arrow’. He plays a scientist and a businessman who develops a suit which has the power to shrink. He reprised his role of The Atom in the TV series ‘Legends of Tomorrow’.

5. Aaron Taylor-Johnson

Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Kick-Ass (left) and Quicksilver. Pic/Santa BantaAaron Taylor-Johnson as Kick-Ass (left) and Quicksilver. Pic/Santa Banta

Aaron won his fans over by portraying the titular role in ‘Kick-Ass‘ series, a film adaption of the graphic novel by the same name. He played a comic book fan aspiring to be a real life superhero without any training or superpowers at all. In 2015, Aaron got the chance to leave his fans spellbound with his lightning fast moves as Quicksilver in ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’. However, he first appeared as the character in a post-credits scene of ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’.

6. Halle Berry

Halle Berry as Catwoman (left) and Storm. Pic/Santa Banta and YouTube
Halle Berry as Catwoman (left) and Storm. Pic/Santa Banta and YouTube

Halle Berry portrayed the mutant superhero Storm, based on Marvel Comics, in the film adaptation of ‘X-Men’ and its sequels, ‘X2: X-Men United’, ‘X-Men: The Last Stand’ and ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’. In the midst of the ‘X-Men’ films came a disastrous comic book adaptation of DC Comics’ character, ‘Catwoman‘, in 2004 for which Halle won the Worst Actress Razzie Award.

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Vivek Agnihotri slams spineless morally corrupt filmmakers

Vivek Agnihotri slams spineless morally corrupt filmmakers


With a new twist that follows the Ae Dil Hai Mushkil – Pakistani artist ban controversy every day, a recent meeting between the politicians and the film world happen to arrive at an amicable solution that however was in favour of the political outrage that broke out post the Uri attacks. Karan Johar has agreed to a few conditions which includes putting a slide for Uri victims in his movie and donating Rs. 5 crores to the Army relief fund, this paving a smoother path for the release of his film. This however hasn’t gone down well with some filmmakers and celebrities who believe that art and politics should be dealt differently.

While Naseeruddin Shah was disappointed in Karan Johar for apologizing about taking a Pakistani artist to play a role in his film, Vivek Agnihotri too lashed out at the filmmaker calling the act spineless and morally corrupt. Here’s a note posted by the director on his social media page:

“My views on the compromise made by spineless, morally bankrupt filmmakers of Bollywood. Once again the top leader of the film industry has gone and slept with the extortionists. And everyone else is silent. Like always. This is how Moguls invaded us. This is how British ruled us. By controlling the spineless artists and culture. I am ashamed to be associated with these people and the industry which doesn’t have the courage to fight for their own work and succumb to any threat. First, they used to succumb to the underworld and now to politicians. It’s easy to blame politicians but remember, who gives them the width? Who gives them the platform to threaten artists? The morally weak and ethically corrupt people who have no moral standing to resist and fight them. These are the people who make audience question every filmmaker’s integrity. You know why? Because they call themselves artists but have no faith in their art. Because there is no art. Because every Friday when exhibitors blackmail small filmmakers and boycott their films, you keep quiet. Each time a filmmaker is bullied, you keep quiet. Shame on you spineless people. I hope today the messiah and champion of Freedom of Expression Mr. Anurag Kashyap issues a statement against such compromisers who give bad name to the industry and doesn’t forget to tag the prime minister.

‘Cowardice is impotence worse than violence. The coward desires revenge but being afraid to die, he looks to others, maybe to the government of the day, to do the work of defense for him. A coward is less than a man. He does not deserve to be a member of a society of men and women’ – Mahatma Gandhi.”

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Marouane Fellaini was Man United's panic buy, says Ryan Giggs

Marouane Fellaini
Marouane Fellaini

London: Manchester United great Ryan Giggs has described former manager David Moyes’ decision to buy Marouane Fellaini from Everton in September 2013 as a “panic” buy.

Fellaini joined United from Everton, Moyes’ former club, in a 27.5 million pounds ($33.6 million, 30.9 million euros) move on transfer deadline day.

But the gangly Belgium midfielder became a symbol of United’s struggles under Moyes, who was sacked in April 2014 after just 10 months in the job.

“I don’t blame David,” Giggs wrote in Saturday’s Daily Telegraph.

“United had signed players late in the window before. This time was different. It was more of a panic.”

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Lionel Messi back in Argentina squad for WC qualifiers

Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi

Buenos Aires: Having fully recovered from a groin injury, Barcelona star Lionel Messi was named on Friday in Argentina’s squad to face Brazil and Colombia in the next round of World Cup qualifiers.

He has not played for his country since scoring the winner in a 1-0 win against Uruguay on September 1.

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Goa picked as hosts for FIFA U-17 World Cup

Fatorda (Goa): The Local Organising Committee (LOC) along with a 13-member FIFA delegation on Saturday carried out an inspection to ascertain Goa’s readiness to host matches and training sessions at the football U-17 World Cup, to be hosted by India in 2017.

The LOC and FIFA experts expressed their satisfaction with the work which has been put in at the venue, according to a release.

Tournament director Javier Ceppi, who has overseen the progression of preparations at the venue, said: “Goa hosted the AFC U-16 Championship, which helped it get into very high infrastructure-compliance levels and gives us enough confidence to ratify it as a venue for the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017.”

“Now, it is the moment to start focusing on all operational aspects to ensure a flawless delivery of the event.”

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Notts skipper Henri Lensbury likes dogs more than women

Henri Lensbury posted this picture on Twitter with one of his dogs
Henri Lensbury posted this picture on Twitter with one of his dogs

Nottingham Forest football captain Henri Lensbury says he’d rather pick his dogs over a night club session with women.

Lensbury owns two dogs and spends most of his time away from the football field with them.

“I like dogs more than women, and trust me, I like women.

“I’d rather stay in with my two dogs on a Saturday night than go out with my mates clubbing. It’s the way they greet you when you get in,” he told British tabloid The Sun recently.

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EPL champs Leicester beat Crystal Palace 3-1, Arsenal draw

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger during the EPL match against Middlesbrough in London on Saturday. Pic/AFP
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger during the EPL match against Middlesbrough in London on Saturday. Pic/AFP

Leicester (United Kingdom): Leicester strikers Shinji Okazaki and Ahmed Musa ended lengthy goal droughts as the Premier League champions beat Crystal Palace 3-1 on Saturday.

Claudio Ranieri’s side were on course for their first win in four league matches after Nigeria international Musa claimed his first Leicester goal in his 10th appearance since a pre-season move from CSKA Moscow.

Japan forward Okazaki doubled Leicester’s lead in the second half at the King Power Stadium with his first goal in 14 league appearances. Austrian defender Christian Fuchs sealed the points in the closing stages with his first goal for the Foxes and Yohan Cabaye’s late reply was no consolation for Palace.

Leicester City's Ahmed Musa (left) celebrates his opening goal against Crystal Palace on Saturday. Pic/Getty Images
Leicester City’s Ahmed Musa (left) celebrates his opening goal against Crystal Palace on Saturday. Pic/Getty Images

Leicester’s 20th home league game without defeat was the perfect birthday present for Ranieri, who turned 65 on Thursday, and it ensured they avoided making the worst start by reigning English champions since Leeds in 1974.

While Leicester have made a spluttering opening in the Premier League, they have looked more like the team that unexpectedly won the title during a run of three successive Champions League victories. The latest of those memorable European wins came in midweek against Copenhagen and the positive vibes finally translated to Leicester’s domestic duties.

In another match, Arsenal was held to goalless draws on Saturday, handing Manchester City the initiative in the nascent Premier League title race. Arsenal were held at home by promoted Middlesbrough, nudging Arsene Wenger’s side a point above previous leaders City.

Arsenal, 6-0 winners over Ludogorets Razgrad in the Champions League in mid-week, were seeking an eighth successive win in all competitions.

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Veteran stand-up comedian Kevin Meaney dies at 60

Los Angeles: Veteran stand-up comedian-actor Kevin Meaney has passed away. He was 60.

The comedian was found unresponsive in his home Friday. Meaney’s agent confirmed that he was found in his home in Forestburgh, New York, and that an autopsy is pending, said
The Hollywood Reporter.

The comedy world, including Patton Oswalt, Judd Apatow, Roseanne Barr and Michael McKean, paid tribute to Meaney on social media following the news.

“Kevin Meaney was as funny as they get and the nicest man,” Apatow tweeted. “He could make you lose your mind laughing.”

McKean wrote, “Kevin Meaney was a great standup, a terrifically funny actor and a very nice man. RIP.”

Meaney was a stand-up comedian for more than 25 years, with his first HBO special airing in 1986, according to his website.

Since then, he has appeared on “The Tonight Show” Starring Johnny Carson, “Late Show With David Letterman”, “Oprah” and “Late Night With Conan O’Brien”.

He appeared on the 1990 sitcom “Uncle Buck” as well as the Tom Hanks film “Big”.

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OMG! This celebrity admits he only became a singer for sex

Michael Buble
Michael Buble

Singer Michael Buble says he first entered the music industry to attract women.

“I believe that many of us who happen to be male want to be in any professional (career) so that we can be more attractive to the same or opposite sex because we enjoy sex as human beings,” Buble told the The Late Late Show, reported a website.

Buble says he was just “13 years old and I thought to myself ‘Wow, that would be an aphrodisiac, to get famous and have a girl kiss me finally'”.

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Going West is passe! Bollywood actors are heading East as Chinese films beckon

Disha Patani, Amyra Dastur and Sonu Sood all share screen time with Jackie Chan in Kung Fu Yoga
Disha Patani, Amyra Dastur and Sonu Sood all share screen time with Jackie Chan in Kung Fu Yoga

Making it big in Hollywood has always been on the wish list of Indian actors. A number of big-ticket Hollywood projects have roped in desi actors like Irrfan Khan and lately Priyanka Chopra and Deepika Padukone. However, of late, an increasing number of Indian actors are traversing a new path. Instead of going West, they are trying to make a presence in Chinese productions.

Sonu Sood is one of the first actors to have a full-fledged role in a Chinese film. The actor essayed the role of King Harshavardhan in Xuanzang, a film which has been chosen by China as the entry for the Best Foreign Language Film category at the 89th Academy Awards in February.

Sonu says, “Period films have always fascinated me. The regal costumes, the stunts, the detailing, it looks magical on screen. When I was approached for the film, I thought it would challenge me as an actor because Chinese films have always been an alien territory for Indian actors.” Sonu will also be sharing screen space with Jackie Chan in the upcoming film, Kung Fu Yoga, which features Bollwood actresses Amyra Dastur and Disha Patani.

Working with Chan
Talking about her experience of working with the Chinese superstar, Disha says, “Jackie is such a humble man. I was completely awestruck when I saw him for the first time. When he came and spoke to me, I thought, “OMG he’s real! He knows my name!”. He is one of the finest and kindest human beings I have come across.”

Amyra, too, was excited about working with Jackie. “It made me want to be part of it.” Another actor who is looking to make it big in China is Rahul Bhat who was seen in Bollywood films like Ugly (2013) and Jai Gangaajal this year. Rahul features in True Heroes, an action-comedy. As part of prep for the film, he learnt Mandarin and martial arts. “I am grateful to the producers who saw my film [Ugly] at Cannes and gave me an opportunity.”

Gaining popularity
With changing content in the international market, the demand for Indian actors in Chinese films is on a rise. Sonu was surprised that he was already a known face, “I wasn’t aware that people recognised me. They would sing songs from Happy New Year (2014) and knew that I had worked with Shah Rukh Khan who is a big star in China.”

Rahul Bhat will be seen in the Chinese action comedy, True Heroes
Rahul Bhat will be seen in the Chinese action comedy, True Heroes

Apart from acting, Sonu is also keen on collaborating with Chinese production houses to produce films. “I have shot two films, so I am aware how they work. I am already in talks with a few production houses and I have also met a few people from the China Film Group Corporation to discuss work. They too are keen on doing something in India so I hope something will materalise soon,” he adds.

Indian actors are often criticised for playing cameos in international films, but Rahul feels the fact that they managed to get an international film is incredible. “A lot of people say, ‘Chhota role play kiya hain’, but that is how it works. You have to start small to make it big. The fact that someone has actually got a role is enormous in itself.” He adds, “The doors are opening, not just for actors, but also for technicians. The collaboration is growing. The Chinese market is keeping an eye on India to get new stories and talent,” he says.

Amyra feels that cinema is expanding and world cinema is being appreciated more and more. “Different cultures are coming together to make movies on a grand scale for the global audience rather than their own country. As an actor one cannot ask for more, ” she explains.

Global exposure
“Indians have always been fascinated by Chinese films. Jackie Chan and Bruce Lee have always been popular in India. But, now the tables have turned and Indian films are gaining popularity. Also, when a film features popular faces from across the world it tends to become more universal,” says Bhatt. Sonu says the trend is catching up because India is increasingly contributing to Chinese films’ coffers? “Kung Fu Yoga, a Sino-Indian project, is a part of the three-film agreement signed between the two countries during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to India.

Similary, a lot of co-production of films is planned for the future. Currently, China has a policy where they showcase 40 films from outside the country. Out of that, 36 films are from all over the world, mostly Hollywood, and only four films from India. They have a restrictive policy. But the new agreement will allow more films to release in China.”

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