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Opinion | 5 things to know in the world of entertainment this week

How is Paramount Pictures making the right calls for its films in a pandemic, and looking back at Kelly Preston's best moments on screen
Credit: Universal Pictures
Kevin Costner and Kelly Preston in "For the Love of the Game"

ST. LOUIS — What do you think?

A question that I am asked countless times per week, because I am an opinion-dispenser. Nowhere else am I asked more often for my take than the entertainment business. It's my own private escape but also a plentiful location for intrigue.

There's always room for more entertainment news commentary. An area of pop culture landscape that needs some attention. Since 2020 is wreaking havoc on the world, I thought some diversions would be needed.

I took a look at the world of movies and television shows, and pulled five things away that I think are vital and important to my readers.

A St. Louis movie theater is offering a safe option for moviegoers

At the moment, new films are still a relic when it comes to observing the release schedule. Many theaters in St. Louis and across the country simply aren't open yet, still examining the different ways to come back. Galleria 6 Cinemas, located inside the Saint Louis Galleria, is one of the few places open and operating with safety measures.

Social distancing is practiced in the lobby and in the theaters. Twenty-five percent capacity is all that is being accepted into its six theaters, all of which are different in their size and scope. New films such as "The Rental" and "The Outpost" have opened there in recent weeks. This week, the theater is showing some oldies, including "Jaws." This weekend, they open "The Fast and The Furious" and "The Matrix."

General Manager Landon Burris and his staff are doing a fine job of accommodating the film addicts who need the escape. Fresh popcorn and goodies are still available, offering the nostalgia of the old (as in March) days.

Go check them out.

"Tenet" delay is a sign of the times shifting for new movie releases

The Christopher Nolan thriller made its third release change last week, changing the sign to "indefinitely" instead of a new date in August or September. The film is on an island now with no imminent arrival, or even an official release date. Smaller films like "Words on Bathroom Walls" even bumped their release back a few weeks. All studios are trying their best to read the terrain (few are ready to go back to the theater just yet) while plotting a proper course to get some business.

Sports are getting back in the swing of things, but new movies and theaters are mainly stuck on the pause button. "The New Mutants" is the next big release, and that doesn't come until the end of August, which leaves plenty of time for a calendar shift. Nolan's "Tenet" tried to stay the course and simply couldn't handle the risk in the end. While "Mulan" and "Wonder Woman: 1984" remain on the docket with official release dates, I wouldn't place much of a bet on them actually opening. Which brings me to my next big discussion item:

Paramount pushing everything back to 2021 is the right move

When you move a Tom Cruise vehicle twice, you know something is up. The "Top Gun" sequel is now coming out next July instead of this December. Paramount Pictures also pushed back "A Quiet Place 2" to 2021. According to Scott Mendelson of Forbes, these moves reflect a big studio not showing one ounce of trust in 2020's release prospects. While you have Warner Brothers potentially attempting a stagger release schedule with "Tenet," Paramount is just moving things back, which could be the wiser long-term move. Instead of taking any chances with a half-measured crowd, just move it back.

In a nutshell, Paramount gets it.

Netflix's "Fear City" New York mafia documentary series is fascinating

In the 1970s, the gangsters owned New York, almost to a literal effect. Local police and the FBI couldn't make a dent into any of the top five mafia families operating in The Big Apple. That was until the RICO (Racketeer, Influencing, Corrupt, Operations) charge came along, allowing authorities to crack down harder on the higher levels of the mob.

This docu-series carves out the dramatic shift in the landscape that occurred between the criminals who thought they ran the world, and the badges who reminded them they didn't. The series is three episodes, all coming in around an hour in length. Give it a look, and make some spaghetti before you hit play. Netflix owns the docu-series game at the moment.

Remembering Kelly Preston

The actress passed away last week at the too-young age of 57 after a long bout with breast cancer. A woman unfortunately known more for being John Travolta's wife, I appreciated her performances as the female agent who dumped Tom Cruise in "Jerry Maguire" and the lady who stole Kevin Costner's heart in "For Love of the Game." She didn't get to have the giant movie career that she may have initially dreamed, but she stuck out in a good way when the camera found her. Eternally gorgeous and more talented than people gave her credit for, the movie world should miss Kelly Preston.

She made a dent in small key spaces of a film, such as the woman who stole Arnold Schwarzenegger's virginity in the hit comedy, "Twins." You couldn't miss her talent in "Addicted to Love," a big role alongside Meg Ryan and Matthew Broderick that came right after "Jerry Maguire."

Off the screen, she was a great mom and wife. Travolta posted a lot of family activities on his Facebook page, nights that would include home sundaes and Christmas songs. That's the first thing I think about when someone dies: their family and what was suddenly halted. Her death shocked many due to the simple fact the family kept her fight mostly private.

Along with finding a Preston gem, you can pass the quarantine time with plenty of films on Netflix and Amazon, which house recent and older releases. "The Other Guys" and "Fun with Dick and Jane" have been frequently played in my house. There's something for everyone.

Until next time, stay safe and sane out there. I need to go see a guy about a breakfast sandwich made properly.