Phone home 👽

It’s me, ClickOrlando and Setting the Stage writer Sam Dunne here with a riddle for the ages:

How many journalists does it take to determine whether “Raiders of the Lost Ark” or “E.T.” is a better movie?

I don’t have the answer, but if I ever come up with it, I’ll let you know.

I say this because it doesn’t take much for our newsroom to devolve into complete and utter chaos, and the ranking of classic movies is only one of our many triggers as I found out this week.

It all started when ClickOrlando’s very own Brenda Argueta (mastermind behind the Central Florida Happenings newsletter) spotted me with my jacket hood up and said I looked like E.T. … You know, the shriveled-up Steven Spielberg-created alien every woman DREAMS of being compared to?

Anyway, that led to our boss declaring E.T. was in his top 5 movies of all-time list, which led to our assistant news director saying that was shocking, which led to everyone shouting what they thought the best movies of all time were.

It was like a scene out of “300″ — there was firing, bloodshed, even death. (*I’m contractually obligated to say that was a joke and no journalists were harmed in the having of this discussion*).

Needless to say, I’m never wearing a hoodie again.

But I gotta ask … which is better? Raiders or E.T.? And what’s on YOUR personal top 5 film list?

Mine changes constantly, but for the most part, it looks something like this (in no particular order): “12 Angry Men,” “Before Sunrise” trilogy, “Life is Beautiful,” “Selma,” and “Stand by Me.” Honorable mention: “Do The Right Thing.”

If you haven’t left yet, I promise there’s less drama below (well, only the good kind of drama).

Yer a legend, Robbie 🌂

(Image: Universal Orlando)

Some celebrity deaths hit harder than others, and Robbie Coltrane was one of those giant losses. As a huge “Harry Potter” fan growing up (think traveled to England and Scotland at 12 years old just to see some of the spots that inspired the story and set), this news broke my heart.

I grew up with the “Harry Potter” book and film series. Hagrid and his caravan of creatures always had a place in our home. So to see that he died, it felt like a part of my childhood did, too.

Which made me think about a term that’s been tossed around quite a bit lately as the presence of celebrity looms larger in our society.

Parasocial relationship (n.) – a one-sided relationship—typically with a popular actor, athlete, character in mass media and so on—in which one party isn’t aware of the other’s existence

So, when “Harry Potter” fans around the world mourn the loss of one of the franchise’s actors, that’s a parasocial relationship.

While I understand that, when left unchecked, that type of relationship isn’t healthy, I find it fascinating how we as humans tend to feel the grief that accompanies losing someone we never really knew. I think we naturally attach these actors and movies and songs to places, people and moments in our own lives and they make it easier for us to hold on.

Like these Central Florida parkgoers who paid tribute to the gentle giant.

Closer Look Q&A: See the Stars ✨

(Copyright 2022 by WKMG ClickOrlando – All rights reserved.)

It’s not every day you get to play a part in making a kid’s wish come true, but that’s exactly what Robin Hoffman and her team at Hoffy’s Heart Productions did for Orlando resident Grace Harkins last month.

Harkins is the area’s latest A-lister having just starred in “SpecialTee,” a short film about celebrating disability and embracing what makes us different. It was made after Harkins told the Make-A-Wish Foundation about her dream of becoming an actress.

I interviewed the star herself, as well as the writer, director and producer behind the project to learn more about the message behind the movie and what it was like to make it.

To hear more about “SpecialTee” and to watch the film for yourself, click here.

More Music, Movies and (Midnights) Mayhem¹ (See footnote) Near You 🎶📽️🤯

(Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts)

🎃 Everyone’s sure to have stage fright after seeing the three remaining spooky shows at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts this Halloween. After all, what’s more frightening than Dracula and Grimm fairy tales come to life? With theater, ballet and opera performances throughout the month of October, audiences are sure to get a thrill from Orlando’s killer … talents. Read more here (if you dare).

🖌️ Hispanic Heritage Month may be over, but there’s never NOT a good time to celebrate and appreciate different cultures. If you’re planning on canvassing (get it…) the Disney Springs area anytime soon, make sure to check out the Art Walk featuring Brazilian, Puerto Rican and other Latino artists. For more on where to find these creations, click here.

👨‍🚀 Ground control to Major Tom. Tom Cruise, that is. He’s gearing up for what could be the most star-studded film of all as he journeys where no actor has gone before — space. In Universal’s latest movie, the company plans to make Cruise the first civilian to perform a real spacewalk, because apparently, the galaxy isn’t that far, far away. Stumble down the ClickOrlando wormhole for more on the actor’s out-of-this-world movie.

End Credits 🎬

Thanks for sticking around to hear about all the latest arts endeavors bringing Central Florida to life! And see below my cryptic Swiftie message.

If you have anything you would like to hear more about or if you’re an artist or know an artist that has an upcoming project you want to see shimmer in the spotlight, please email me, Sam Dunne, at [email protected]

Don’t worry, I don’t bite. Only sing and dance.

1. We all knew I had to address the latest “midnights” masterpiece in SOME way. And what kind of Swiftie would I be if I didn’t include my love of the album as a furtive footnote in typical Taylor fashion? Welcome to Midnights Mayhem with Sam. *Laughs maniacally*

Copyright 2022 by WKMG ClickOrlando – All rights reserved.