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Film Feature: HollywoodChicago.com Remembers the Films of Director John G. Avildsen

John G. Avildsen

CHICAGO – His films were more popular than his name, but director John G. Avildsen did put his mark on the last 30 years of 20th Century movies. Avildsen died last week at the age of 81. He is known best for the Oscar Best Picture-winning “Rocky” (1976), but also did the controversial “Joe” (1970), “Save the Tiger” (1973, Best Actor Oscar for Jack Lemmon), John Belushi’s last film “Neighbors” (1981), “The Karate Kid” (1984), “Lean on Me” (1989) and “8 Seconds” (1994). Patrick McDonald, Spike Walters and Jon Espino of HollywoodChicago.com offer three essays on their Avildsen favorites.

Jackie Chan, Jaden Smith Are Kickin’ it in Remake of ‘The Karate Kid’

CHICAGO – Despite any resistance that must have been felt in remaking the quasi-classic 1984 film “The Karate Kid,” veteran Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith put their best kicking feet forward and spin some new cloth out of the old material. In resetting the location and putting in some surreal modern touches, this remake mostly succeeds.

Slideshow: 24-Image Gallery of ‘The Karate Kid’ Chicago Premiere Event

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Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan on the Red Carpet in Chicago

CHICAGO – May 26th marked a special Chicago Premiere of “The Karate Kid,” the remake of the 1984 classic, this time around starring Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan. Smith and Chan participated in the Street Festival Event while greeting admirers. Executive Producer Will Smith even made a quick appearance.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘The Karate Kid I & II: Collector’s Edition’

The Karate Kid I & II

CHICAGO – Before you make plans to check out the remake of “The Karate Kid” with Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan on June 11th, flashback to where the phenomenon began with the 1984 original film starring Ralph Macchio, Pat Morita, and Elisabeth Shue and the film’s first sequel, now available on Blu-ray.

Will Smith to Produce New ‘The Karate Kid’ Starring Kid Jaden Smith

CHICAGO – Sometimes rumors do become true. Will Smith will produce a new version of “The Karate Kid” with his 10-year-old kid, Jaden Smith, in the starring role.

The confirmed news surfaced on Tuesday in contrast to denied reports from a year ago that Will Smith was planning to wax on a remake of the 1984 classic “The Karate Kid”.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Adam West, LIFE Magazine

    CHICAGO – As they say about Adam West’s interpretation of Batman, “he hit so hard, that words describing the impact appeared out of thin air.” But there was more to him than just the superhero tights, as Patrick McDonald, Spike Walters and Jon Espino of HollywoodChicago.com remember the three main characters in the career of Adam West, who passed away last week.

  • Jeff Awards, 2017

    CHICAGO – The 44th edition of the Non-Equity Jeff Awards were given out on June 5th, 2017, at what insiders call “the theater prom.” The event honors the non-union smaller or “storefront” theater companies, and their efforts to produce quality stage work. Hosted in grand style by Alexis Roston and Lillian Castillo, the recipients of the top play was “At the Table” by the Broken Nose Theatre and top musical was “High Fidelity” by the Refuge Theatre Project.

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