Entertainment news roundup: ‘Squid Game’ star Lee Jung-jae goes behind the camera for ‘Hunt’; A Ukrainian director denounces the Russian presence in Cannes and more

Below is a summary of the entertainment news briefs.

Lakata’s community-driven film ‘War Pony’ debuts at Cannes

Set on the Pine Ridge Reservation, “War Pony” started as a project among friends and over seven years has grown into a community effort, said directors Gina Gammell and Riley Keough, who pitched their directorial debut at the Cannes film festival. Cast entirely with first-time actors and set in the sovereign lands of the Oglala Lakota in South Dakota, the film follows the setbacks and triumphs of 12-year-old Matho, played by LaDainian Crazy Thunder and 23-year-old Bill, played by Jojo Baptise Whiting.

Obi-Wan hides the Force in new ‘Star Wars’ TV series, says Ewan McGregor

“Star Wars” Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi is back for a six-episode TV series, as is Ewan McGregor, who played him as a youngster. Forget Jedi sleight of hand and lightsaber fights. “Obi-Wan doesn’t do that anymore. He lives a normal life. He doesn’t live the life of a Jedi anymore,” McGregor, who also serves as the show’s executive producer, said in an interview.

Ali Abbasi presents ‘Persian Noir’ at Cannes with ‘Holy Spider’

Iranian director Ali Abbasi premiered “Holy Spider” at the Cannes Film Festival on Sunday, the story of a serial killer in the holy city of Mashhad – based on a true story – dubbing the genre “Black Persian”. “It’s film noir. It’s Persian noir,” Abbasi told Reuters.

A Ukrainian director denounces the Russian presence in Cannes

Ukrainian director Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk has slammed the Cannes Film Festival for including a Russian director in its lineup, as the first filmmaker’s “Pamfir” was screened at Cannes’ Quinzaine des Réalisateurs on Saturday. The festival has banned official Russian delegations from attending, but Russian dissident Kirill Serebrennikov, who has spoken out against invading Ukraine, presented his competition film “Tchaikovsky’s Wife” at the festival on Wednesday.

Box Office: ‘Downton Abbey 2’ starts strong with $16 million as ‘Doctor Strange’ reigns again

The Crawley family always has the royal touch at the box office. “Downton Abbey: A New Era,” a sequel to the big-screen sequel to the beloved British TV show, captured $16 million from 3,815 North American cinemas on its domestic debut. Although down slightly from initial plans, these returns mark an encouraging start at a time when older audiences have chosen to go to the cinema. There had been understandable concerns about the second “Downton Abbey” in terms of its commercial prospects, and not because longtime fans of the show were tired of devouring the palace plot on screen and the drama of the class system. Besides “House of Gucci” and the James Bond sequel “No Time to Die,” many adult-oriented pandemic-era movies (like the remake of Steven Spielberg’s “West Side Story” and the sports drama Will Smith “King Richard”) have struggled to sell tickets despite positive reviews, so it’s no small feat that nearly 50% of ticket buyers for “Downton Abbey: A New Era,” a story of wellness set in a familiar franchise, were 55 and older.

‘Squid Game’ Star Lee Jung-jae Goes Behind The Camera For ‘Hunt’

“Squid Game” star Lee Jung-jae is flexing his movie muscles with “Hunt,” a spy thriller he wrote, directed, produced and starred in. Lee’s debut film as a director and screenwriter had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, where it is being screened out of competition.

(With agency contributions.)

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