In an unprecedented move – usually he sticks to short, funny and infrequent tweets, despite his fandom constantly begging for more social media interaction – Darren Criss has taken to his official Facebook page and posted an extensive blog expressing his love and gratitude towards his fans.

He also writes about his appreciation of the community they have created in his name, and discusses his personal thoughts on his own crazy rise to stardom over the past two years. This is a must-read, and we have copied the blog post, in its entirety, below:

From Darren’s Facebook page:

Dearest friends-

Though my very first episode aired on TV in November of 2010, the end of this past September actually marked the two year anniversary of a phone call that really turned my life upside down: I was notified that I had been cast as a new character on the popular television series, “Glee.”

Woah.

By that point, some of you had maybe known me from silly youtube videos, and for even less of you- from cafes, restaurants, and bars I used to play music at. Regardless of the when or the how or the why, it’s been been a pretty incredible journey for all of us since that phone call.

Some highlights:

In April of 2010, I was getting ready to start working on what some of you might now know as A Very Potter Musical. I was a senior at the University of Michigan, and I had just read an article about the cast members from the new hit TV series “Glee” singing at the White House. I thought, “Man, that’s insane.” Well, just this past June I took a song I wrote called “Not Alone” that I used in that very same musical I was working on in college, and sang it in person for the President himself… Shortly before I got to fist-bump him.

In July of 2011***, I was asked to speak on a Harry Potter-based fan panel in San Diego. I thought I was a bit under-qualified for the job, but was nonetheless excited to be asked to speak on a panel at one of my favorite summer events: Comic-Con! When I got there, I realized that we were given a rough time slot because it was the same exact time as the panel for that same hit TV show, “Glee.” I thought, “Man, this ‘Glee’ thing is really stealin’ my thunder…” Ok, well, the very next year, I couldn’t do the HP fan panel again because I was on that Glee panel.

The crazy stories go on and on, not to mention the little things like magazine covers or hitting Billboard charts, or doing a film with the likes of amazing people like Kristen Wiig, Annette Bening, Matt Dillon… Let’s see, what else, oh, getting to live my dream of doing a Broadway show, and then of course, there was getting to sing “Rainbow Connection” with Kermit the Frog… I mean, these things are unbelievable. Unbelievable. I have a pretty wild imagination, but I never thought any of that could actually happen, let alone in such a relative short period of time.

Here’s the deal- I work hard, I try to make the right decisions and do the best I can with everything I do and all that good stuff- but really, that can only go so far. There are so many contributing factors to what has happened for me that go far beyond my control… And that’s where you come in. You, the fans, have been a huge part of the reason why I’ve been able to do half the things I’ve been able to do.

We live in an unprecedented age of social connectivity, and I am happy to say that you none of you have failed to take full advantage of that. Don’t think I’m not aware of how active the fandom is, or how much impact is has. Remember: Not only am I fan myself, but I do have an internet connection. I see the gifs, I see the fanfics, I see the memes, and it’s all amazing stuff. Though I haven’t met the majority of you, it’s a real thrill to know that many of your lives have come together on behalf of mine. That’s an incredibly moving concept, and the fact that those connections have yielded so much positivity is something even more amazing.

Let’s take my own stories out of the picture for a second- you, as a group, have all accomplished some pretty amazing things yourselves. You done everything from raising money for great causes to organizing awesome flash mobs over the internet to show your support. You have shown up at the crack of dawn and stayed until you’re the last one standing. You have come together to create something far greater than any of us: a real sense of community and a genuine place of support- not just for me but for each other. And I can safely say that I wouldn’t be where I am now if it weren’t for that.

Oftentimes I meet people who challenge me, “You have no idea what you’ve done for me.” Well the truth is, it’s the other way around. I do have an idea, and a pretty good one at that. Because for whatever you may think I may be giving you, you are actually giving back to me, tenfold. And I am constantly wondering when and if it will fade, who will stick around, who will get bored- I often think about the day there won’t be anyone on the other side of the stage door… but despite myself, as time goes on, you all have never ceased to amaze me with your enthusiasm, creativity, and seemingly endless joy that continues to inspire and encourage me.

Tonight is the premiere of the dreaded break-up episode. For many Glee fans, I imagine there will more than reason to be sad. But cheer up, think of it this way: much of your support has allowed me to be on this show long enough to reach a breakup in the first place; it has created a relationship that people cared enough about whereby it was even worth writing an episode about its potential end. I never thought I would get to be around long enough for something like that. And I really have you, the fans to thank for it. It’s something to be proud of.

What’s more, I was even asked to play my own arrangement of teenage dream for this episode- an acoustic piano version which so many of you have supported since I sang it as my first song on my very first episode. I started playing this version at shows as a sort of “thank you” to the fans, for making it such a big song for both myself and the show. It was the song that started everything.

So before the episode airs tonight, I thought it was only appropriate to write a fully fledged note to all of you that could express my deep appreciation for the past two years since that crazy phone call. I hope that this is just the beginning, and that I get to thank you many more times for many more adventures as the years roll by. But for now, know that I am so very grateful for everything you’ve given me, and I am very proud of what we have accomplished together. From teenage dream to teenage dream, thank you for allowing me to live mine.

your biggest fan,
Darren

[*** He means 2010. He was on a Harry Potter Fan panel at 2010 Comic Con panel, and Glee‘s 2011 panel.]

Admit it – who’s weeping? In all seriousness, this is a lovely gesture from someone who has a reputation of being very expressive and eloquent in personal interactions and in interviews, but who has generally shied away from using social media to address the fandom at large. It’s no secret to Darren Criss fans that Darren has a true understanding of fan culture and is integrated into his fandom – one of the things that has always made Darren’s fandom so loyal and so familiar.

From starting out with Team StarKid – where the “us” and “them” dynamic isn’t “us, the fandom” and “them, the stars” but “all of us” and “the rest of the world who aren’t in on the joke,” Darren has held onto that attitude while growing into his position as one of today’s brightest young stars. Some celebrities never have that attitude, never have that relationship with fans, because they never came from fan culture. Darren Criss does. He’s proved that time and time again, in every fan interaction, in every livestream, every time he’s given the chance to go a little off-book with the press, when he’s at his Broadway show’s stage door thanking the crowd every single night. And he’s proved it here, in writing, which will doubtless be quoted and reblogged all over Tumblr and printed onto teeshirts in Skreened stores in a matter of minutes.

So if anyone ever wonders what the deal with that Darren Criss guy is, what’s with the hype surrounding him, what’s with the pink sunglasses? Point them here, because it’s not simply that he’s on Glee, because he has a charming smile or sings a cute song or kisses a cute boy. It’s this. This is the deal. He’s still the “us.”

The final 10 episodes of Pretty Little Liars will air starting in April 2017.

The news was announced via Facebook Live by the Pretty Little Liars creator, Marlene King, along with the stars of the show, Troian Bellisario, Ashley Benson, Lucy Hale, Shay Mitchell, and Sasha Pieterse. You can still watch the video on the official Pretty Little Liars Facebook page.

The conclusion of the show has been rumored for quite a while now, with King even stating earlier in the year that season 7 would likely be the end of Pretty Little Liars “as we know it.” However, up until now, speculation continued about how the show could potentially continue past its seventh season.

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The final 10 episodes of Pretty Little Liars will air starting in April 2017.

The news was announced via Facebook Live by the Pretty Little Liars creator, Marlene King, along with the stars of the show, Troian Bellisario, Ashley Benson, Lucy Hale, Shay Mitchell, and Sasha Pieterse. You can still watch the video on the official Pretty Little Liars Facebook page.

The conclusion of the show has been rumored for quite a while now, with King even stating earlier in the year that season 7 would likely be the end of Pretty Little Liars “as we know it.” However, up until now, speculation continued about how the show could potentially continue past its seventh season.

A possible film was previously discussed as an option to end the series, but that seems to be off the table now. The series finale will now be a “two-hour, drama-filled television event.”

As for what we can expect for the final 10 episodes of Pretty Little Liars, it will “continue to be filled with homecomings and reunions.” We’ve already seen so many familiar and forgotten faces in season 7, so it will be nice to be able to say a final goodbye to even more characters.

On top of the returning characters, we can also expect a wedding! Obviously Ezria is the couple to watch for this, since they recently got engaged, but you never really know with Pretty Little Liars.

The summer finale of Pretty Little Liars season 7 is airing tomorrow, August 30, so we will have a long wait before the final 10 episodes air in April 2017.

The series finale will be followed by the premiere of Marlene King’s new series, Famous In Love. If you need a Pretty Little Liars fix after the show ends, this may be a good show for you to check out!

Famous In Love will be another one-hour drama that will supposedly “put the spotlight on the dark side of fame.” It is based on the novel of the same name, written by Rebecca Serle.

How do you feel about ‘Pretty Little Liars’ ending with season 7?

Behind-the-scenes looks at next year’s live-action Beauty and the Beast continue to leak off the animated film’s 25th Anniversary Edition, arriving in September.

Today we have four new previews. This one’s a particular doozy because we get to see a first look (sort of) at Emma Watson as Belle, who has yet to be unveiled in full. The dress she’s wearing in this concept art may be best remembered from the animated movie for its appearance in the scenes surrounding the song “Belle”:

beauty-and-the-beast-belle-emma-watson

Read full article

Behind-the-scenes looks at next year’s live-action Beauty and the Beast continue to leak off the animated film’s 25th Anniversary Edition, arriving in September.

Today we have four new previews. This one’s a particular doozy because we get to see a first look (sort of) at Emma Watson as Belle, who has yet to be unveiled in full. The dress she’s wearing in this concept art may be best remembered from the animated movie for its appearance in the scenes surrounding the song “Belle”:

beauty-and-the-beast-belle-emma-watson

Three pieces of concept art appear to have been drawn up for the costume department. We’re also getting a look at Gaston (Luke Evans) and Mrs. Potts (Emma Thompson):

beauty-and-the-beast-mrs-potts

beauty-and-the-beast-gaston

Finally, we have a shot of Luke Evans and a woman rehearsing a dance scene that appears to take place on top of a table. In the background you can see additional concept art depicting Mrs. Potts (in kettle form), Chip, and a piano (who might be played by Stanley Tucci and named Cadenza):

beauty-and-the-beast-belle

Last week we got to see several other first looks from this same behind-the-scenes featurette, including Dan Stevens as the Beast (human form), Cogsworth, and Lumière.

At this rate, the whole behind-the-scenes look may be spoiled by the time the Beauty and the Beast 25th Anniversary Edition is released to the world on September 20.

The live-action Beauty and the Beast arrives this March and is directed by Bill Condon.

Report: Warner Bros. wants Daniel Radcliffe to return for ‘Cursed Child’ movie

File this one under: Crazy rumor that's also somehow... plausible? (But it's probably not gonna happen.)

10:49 am EDT, August 29, 2016

If Warner Bros. are indeed working on a movie version of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, they’ll likely be looking to bring back the o.g. Harry himself, Daniel Radcliffe.

At least that’s the hot buzz from NY Daily News, whose “Tinseltown sources” also say that a movie version of the play could arrive as early as 2020, and that it might evolve into a trilogy about Harry and his son Albus.

Daniel Radcliffe — the same Daniel Radcliffe who proclaimed in 2010 that “I’m working very hard to establish myself as an actor outside of this series,” and who hasn’t even been to see Cursed Child yet — is reportedly Warner Bros.’ choice to play Harry in the series, which (as unlikely as it is to actually happen) may very well be true.

Read full article

If Warner Bros. are indeed working on a movie version of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, they’ll likely be looking to bring back the o.g. Harry himself, Daniel Radcliffe.

At least that’s the hot buzz from NY Daily News, whose “Tinseltown sources” also say that a movie version of the play could arrive as early as 2020, and that it might evolve into a trilogy about Harry and his son Albus.

Daniel Radcliffe — the same Daniel Radcliffe who proclaimed in 2010 that “I’m working very hard to establish myself as an actor outside of this series,” and who hasn’t even been to see Cursed Child yet — is reportedly Warner Bros.’ choice to play Harry in the series, which (as unlikely as it is to actually happen) may very well be true.

After all, as amazing as Jamie Parker is as Harry Potter on stage, Warner Bros., must be aware that most Harry Potter fans won’t be able to see the play live, and therefore wouldn’t necessarily be as hyped about a ‘Harry Potter movie’ that didn’t star the actors from the original movie series.

Related: Have you read all of Hypable’s original Cursed Child coverage? (There’s a lot!)

As NY Daily News notes, however, Radcliffe is very much doing his own thing, with even the sources admitting that he’d “need some persuading” before agreeing to reprise the role he’s trying very hard to distance himself from.

Aside from this small inconvenience, there are plenty of other reasons why this would not — and perhaps should not — work out.

First of all, Dan Radcliffe is currently 27 years old, and if Warner Bros. was really planning the Cursed Child movie for 2020, he’d have to play the part of a 36-40-year-old Harry in the movie at age >30. We all remember how awkward the Deathly Hallows epilogue turned out, and we’re sure there aren’t many of us who’d want an hours-long version of that (for not to mention the possibility that they’d split this story into two movies).

Second, once they got Radcliffe back, they’d have to get everyone else, too. You couldn’t just have the original Harry back while introducing a brand new Hermione, Ron, Draco, Ginny, etc.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly: Daniel Radcliffe is not Harry Potter. While movie fans will probably always see Radcliffe’s face when thinking about the character, he existed on the pages of the novel series first, which means a potential Cursed Child movie wouldn’t be recasting anyone if they went with new actors — they’d simply pick a new, older set of actors to embody the iconic characters.

Having seen the play on stage, this writer would personally much rather see the original Cursed Child cast reprise their roles for any eventual movie version that Warner Bros. puts together. A lot of the play’s success hinges on these actors’ performances and chemistry, and it’d be a shame to lose that magic on screen.

Would you want to see Daniel Radcliffe back as Harry Potter in a ‘Cursed Child’ movie?