Globally, companies are pulling away from any and all associations with Russia. Here in Australia, I even saw a local chain of liquor stores BWS has pulled Russian vodka from the shelves. This commercial freeze on all things Russia extends to the media.

Two quick Netflix thoughts on all-things Russia. Will Netflix rebrand season 2 of Russian Doll? I do wonder if the title may be seen as a tad whiffy in the current moment. But more significant is that Netflix has been in production on its first Russian original series Anna K. One would assume there are a number of conversations happening around the upcoming release of that series.

Disney, Warner Bros, and Sony no longer releasing films in Russia

If you were hoping to see the new Pixar movie, The Batman, or Morbius in a Russian cinema, it ain't going to happen with the studios pulling big release movies from the Russian market.

That Pixar film, amusingly enough, is titled Turning Red. But it hasn't got any of that commie messaging you may expect from the title - it's about a girl who turns into a red panda when she gets excited. I don't know for sure that it is based on a true story, but I think we dated once.

Disney, Sony and Warner Bros pause film releases in Russia over Ukraine invasion
Disney and Sony call off all upcoming theatrical releases, including Pixar film Turning Red and Morbius, with Warner Bros also pulling The Batman

RT Free Europe

Social media companies YouTube, TikTok, and Meta (ie Facebook and Instagram) are blocking RT on its platforms in Europe. TV streamer Roku will stop Russia Today streaming on its platform also.

RT sees its influence diminish as TV providers and tech companies take action against the Russia-backed outlet
RT, the Russia-backed media outlet infamous for promoting Vladimir Putin’s talking points, has seen its influence significantly diminish in recent days as cable carriers and social media companies have taken swift measures to block its reach.

On the subject of The Batman...

I saw a media screening of The Batman last night. I have what one might consider a review up on the ABW site.

Review: The Batman
The Batman is a film that excels when it leans into the weird.

Tim Robinson signs up to Computer School

I Think You Should Leave with Tim Robinson's Tim Robinson (who stars in the show) and Zach Kanin (who co-created the show with the aforementioned Tim Robinson) have a pilot in the works at HBO Max.

Computer School will star Robinson as a man attending a Michigan computer school with his older teenaged nephew. What does this mean for more I Think You Should Leave with Tim Robinson at Netflix? I'm not sure, but I remind people that it is better to have loved and lost...

HBO Max Orders ‘Computer School’ Comedy Pilot From ‘I Think You Should Leave With Tim Robinson’ Duo
HBO has given a pilot green light to Computer School, a single-camera comedy written/executive produced by Tim Robinson and Zach Kanin, creators of the cult Netflix sketch comedy series I Think You…

Cristin Milioti checks into The Resort

Palm Springs star Cristin Milioti will star in an 8-part comedy-thriller for Peacock called The Resort. Writer/Showrunner Andy Siara is best known for writing the movie Palm Springs. Quite the coincidence.

William Jackson Harper, last seen in Love Life, will star opposite Milioti. Personally, it is some of the other cast announced for this that has me enthused. High Maintenance star/co-creator Ben Sinclair will appear in the show and direct some episodes. Also, among the show's recurring actors are husband and wife Dylan Baker and Becky Ann Baker. Have they ever appeared in a show together before? Surely, this cannot be the first...

William Jackson Harper, Cristin Milioti to Star in ‘The Resort’ for Peacock
The comedic thriller reunites Milioti and ‘Palm Springs’ writer Andy Siara, who created the series.

Sam Esmail sets forth for Metropolis

Mr Robot writer-director Sam Esmail has his next project set up at Apple TV+ where he will write and direct a TV series based on the 1927 Fritz Lang film Metropolis.

For those of you familiar with Mr Robot, this is quite clearly a perfect union of creator and subject. I'm excited to see what he can bring to the screen with this - especially from the monied Apple TV+ - that is a streaming service that doesn't do cheap.

‘Metropolis’ TV Adaptation From Sam Esmail Lands Series Order At Apple
Sam Esmail’s adaptation of Fritz Lang’s classic 1927 film Metropolis finally is coming to the small screen. The streamer has handed a series order to the project, which comes out of the Mr. Robot c…

If you have never seen Metropolis before, note that it is a 1927 movie, so it is very easy to watch it in full on YouTube. Personally, I recommend the Giorgio Moroder version released in 1984.

Larry David cans HBO documentary - the day before it was set to air

Tonight HBO was set to broadcast a Larry Charles documentary about his former Seinfeld boss Larry David. You may have seen the promo for The Larry David Story, which was a look back at his life. A trailer for it ran just a few weeks ago in the Always Be Watching newsletter.

Larry David has decided that the documentary isn't good enough and that the featured interview with him should be recorded in front of a studio audience. So the documentary won't air as scheduled and is instead being retooled.

Larry David Just Shelved His Own Documentary Before It Aired
As if a plot point from Curb, the HBO star determined that a two-part film about his life, set to debut today, wasn’t up to snuff yet.

Disney+ sets the date for Netflix's Marvel

Disney+ is really going to have to create a brand around those Netflix Marvel shows it has just acquired so that folks stop calling them the Netflix Marvel shows.

Disney+ has announced the shows will be added to the streamer on March 16. The shows include: Daredevil, Jessica Jones, The Defenders, Iron Fist, The Punisher, and Luke Cage. But it's not just the Netflix shows being added - included will be Marvel's Agents of SHIELD (which, ABW notes, is already available on Disney+ in several territories).

Netflix’s Marvel shows, including Daredevil and Punisher, hitting Disney Plus in March
Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and everyone else

Sam Elliot not a fan of The Power of The Dog

Despite being an Oscar frontrunner, The Power of The Dog lacks the endorsement of Sam Elliott. The moustachioed actor who currently stars in western series 1883 and knows his way around a horse on-screen, was a guest on the WTF podcast with Marc Maron this week (it's a really great interview - make sure you listen to it) and got to talking about The Power of The Dog.

He's not a fan.

“Where’s the Western in this Western?” Elliott asked. “I mean, Cumberbatch never got out of his fucking chaps. He had two pairs of chaps — a woolly pair and a leather pair. And every fucking time he would walk in from somewhere — he never was on a horse, maybe once — he’d walk into the fucking house, storm up the fucking stairs, go lay in his bed in his chaps and play his banjo. It’s like, what the fuck?”
Sam Elliott Slams ‘Power of the Dog’ as ‘Piece of S—,’ Criticizes Its ‘Allusions of Homosexuality’
Sam Elliott railed against Jane Campion’s “The Power of the Dog” during his visit to Marc Maron’s “WTF” podcast (via Insider). Campion’s drama is nominated…

TeeVee Snacks

  • Don't expect to see a PSVR2 before Christmas this year. It is likely to release in early 2023. Read: Road To VR
  • Kevin Costner will narrate a four-part docuseries about the Yellowstone National Park for its 150th anniversary. The series is for Fox News streaming service Fox Nation. Read: Variety
  • Brad Pitt's Plan B is in development on a Beetlejuice sequel with Michael Keaton and Winona Ryder both reportedly on board. Read: Deadline
  • RIP Ralph Ahn, a memorable recurring actor in New Girl. Read: The AV Club
  • Sony is merging together its two market-leading anime streaming services Funimation and Crunchyroll, with Funimation content being added to the Crunchyroll platform. I'm told that in Australia this will bring over 50 new titles to Crunchyroll, or about 1600 additional hours worth. My understanding is that there was already quite a lot of content overlap between the two services.

Trailer Park

Wild Abandon debuts on Netflix March 30.

In the haze of a midlife crisis, an architect begins living a double life as a punk while members of his family lead their own crisis-ridden lives.

Julia debuts on HBO Max March 31.

"Julia" is inspired by Julia Child's extraordinary life and her long-running television series, "The French Chef," which pioneered the modern cooking show.

Documentary 2-part series Undercurrent debuts on HBO March 8.

The two-part HBO original documentary examines the disappearance and murder of journalist, Kim Wall, and the subsequent trial of her killer.

The Home Edit returns to Netflix for s2 on April 1.

Welcome To Eden is coming soon to Netflix.

A group of young adults attend a party on a remote island, but the supposed paradise they find waiting for them is anything but.

Top Boy returns to Netflix for season 2 from March 18.

Dushane wants to expand his empire beyond the streets. But with a huge investment, partners abroad and family crises, more money means more problems.

The Adam Project debuts March 11 on Netflix.

That's it for today. Stay dry and safe.