News, reviews, op-eds, and roundups.

Editor Joanna Cárdenas on the Importance of Community for Creators

Kokila Editor Joanna Cárdenas is on faculty for this year’s SCBWI-L.A. Working Writers Retreat (WWR). She has worked on critically-acclaimed award-winning books such as The First Rule of Punk by Celia C. Pérez and The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora by Pablo Cartaya. Prior to joining Kokila at the launch of the Penguin Random House imprint last year, she was an editor at Viking Children’s Books. Joanna is also on the steering committee for Latinx in Publishing, a nonprofit organization that promotes

Snowden hopes new biopic makes you care about your privacy

While San Diego Comic-Con attracts a number of high-profile names, it was still surprising to see Edward Snowden's face beam down at a small cinema audience just a few blocks away from the chaos of fans celebrating fictional heroes and villains alike. "I don't think anybody looks forward to having a movie made about themselves, particularly someone who's a privacy advocate," said Snowden via live stream. Of course, the NSA whistleblower is considered both a hero and villain, depending who you...

Game of Thrones's Season 6 premiere plunges right into power grabs and mysteries

Warning: Before you embark on our Season 6, Episode 1 analysis, understand that there are literally spoilers everywhere. Valar morghulis. You have been warned. The highly anticipated season 6 return of Game of Thrones, which finally surpasses George RR Martin's behemoth books, thankfully began right where we left off, with Jon Snow lying in a pool of his own blood. Jon Snow is still dead, folks. Despite all the rumors and speculations of the last 10 months after the young Olly slid the final...

This Overwatch animated short is cinematic mastery

Blizzard's first animated short for Overwatch is the best way to get to know Winston, a moon dwelling, primate scientist gorilla. It also proves the game maker still has some storytelling chops. Titled "Recall," this is the first in a series of CGI animated shorts that will be released in the lead up to the launch of the new first-person shooter on May 24. While previous trailers and teasers have showcased Overwatch as a whole, these shorts will go in depth with the game's cast of heroes.

Attention gamers: E3 may open its doors to the public*

With people pondering whether E3 has lost its relevance following major game studios like EA, Disney and Activision dropping out of this year's show, organizer Entertainment Software Association (ESA) may be looking to add public attendance to revitalize it. One of the key questions surrounding the debate is whether game studios are skipping E3 because it isn't open to the public, as only the media and those in the gaming industry are allowed to attend.

Online content earns a little respect from Hollywood

The next Emmy Awards ceremony could see your favorite stars from YouTube Red, Maker Studios or Adult Swim take home an Emmy later this year, thanks to changes to the short-form category that make room for digital content. That isn't to say the Emmys have snubbed internet content in the past, as they have included long-form series contenders from providers like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon. However, there were only two awards (live entertainment and non-fiction) reserved for the short-form category,

Why Ex Machina's visual effects will stun you in their simplicity

Update: Ex Machina won the Oscar for Best Visual Effects Sunday night, beating out some heavy favorites to take home the award. Read our interview with the film's VFX supervisor Andrew Whitehurst below. With Oscars weekend upon us, we have the nominated flicks on our minds, and one standout film in particular. No, it isn't The Revenant. Ex Machina, an independent film with a small cast, is up for the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects. It's going against big blockbusters Star Wars: The Force...

The X-Files premiere review

If there's one thing seasons eight and nine of the original series and the far-from-successful films have shown us, it's that we don't just want more Mulder and Scully, we want GOOD Mulder and Scully. We not only want the duo in perfect form, but also a quintessential The X-Files storyline at its best. So, thankfully, we got a two-day/two-part premiere of season 10, because had there only been one, there'd be good reason to think the franchise shouldn't have come back after all.

Why Netflix reviving old TV shows is exactly what we want

In case you missed it amid the fervor over the new Star Wars trailer and Back to the Future Day, a certain part of the internet went insane on Monday as word spread that Netflix may be in talks to revive the series Gilmore Girls. While the streaming service has yet to confirm a Gilmore Girls comeback, some will argue that Netflix should focus on creating completely original content rather than reviving an old series that already had its time. Yet despite ending in 2007, Gilmore Girls has seen...

Comic-Con 2015 led us deeper down the virtual reality rabbit hole

While San Diego Comic-Con 2014 mixed cosplay with Google Glass, this year it's all about virtual reality. Conference company Dent held a special "VR Lounge" event just outside of the San Diego Convention Center Thursday night, offering anyone interested in VR or AR [augmented reality] the chance to demo some of what's being developed in the space, including the ability to walk around the Holodeck of the Enterprise from Star Trek: The Next Generation. While there was no formal talk at the event...

Wil Wheaton Interview: Star Trek: TNG Remastered On Blu-ray

Star Trek fans, rejoice! Star Trek: The Next Generation (TNG) has been remastered in 1080p high definition for the visual pleasure of nerds, geeks and the mundane human population alike. Just as the Blu-ray release of the first season becomes available around the world, Wil Wheaton took some time to discuss his thoughts on Star Trek: TNG and what it means to him now, so many years later. He has become a bit of a familiar face on the small screen, notably appearing in shows like The Big Bang...

Derailed Mystery

FilmInk visits the set of upcoming web series ‘Event Zero’, which sees ‘The Tunnel’s’ creators Julian Harvey and Enzo Tedeschi return to Sydney’s train tracks for more spooks and thrills. The trailer for Event Zero captured the attention of thousands, leading Julian Harvey and Enzo Tedeschi to win Movie Extra's Webfest 2.0 competition. Up against 80 other trailers, Event Zero sets up the mystery of a train derailment in Circular Quay. Many are injured or dead, while others start dying from contagion. Is it a horrific accident? A terrorist attack? Or something else?

A delicious offering

Tanveer Ahmed’s memoir covers aspects of his life with wit, compassion and understanding, leaving the reader with a craving for more, says FARRHA KHAN I have never met Tanveer Ahmed and only know him through his media pursuits, namely his opinion column in the Sydney Morning Herald and his writings for Indian Link. His recently released memoir, The Exotic Rissole provides an encouraging and touchingly honest insight into his life that had me laughing out loud, smiling or nodding along with him...

Billie: A girl, a swing and underpants

Walking into the small theatre on Cleveland Street in Redfern having no knowledge of this play until just a few days earlier, I had no idea I’d be moved so deeply as I was by Michelle St. Anne’s solo performance. Billie is an evocative play written and performed by Indian-origin actor Michelle St. Anne. She found inspiration for this play in Australian writer Tim Winton’s Booker nominated novel, The Riders. Born in Melbourne and brought up in Sydney, Michelle has been passionate about theatre...