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July 31: Happy Birthday Wesley Snipes and JK Rowling

Snipes and Rowling

One of our headline birthday celebrants played a vampire and the other wrote best-selling books about wizards.  One paid their taxes and the other served jail time for their failure to do so.  JK Rowling, creator of Harry Potter, turns 51 today.  She shares a birthday with action star and reformed tax evader, Wesley Snipes, who turns 54.

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Franchise Killers: Blade: Trinity

Wesley Snipes - Blade: Trinity - 2004

Wesley Snipes – Blade: Trinity – 2004

The original Blade came along at a time when comic book movies were deemed “too risky”.  The year before, a hat trick of comic-based failure consisting of Batman and Robin, Steel and Spawn all struck out at the box office.  Marvel movies weren’t cool yet, so the first Blade was sold as a low-budget vampire movie rather than the adaptation of a comic book.  Blade was a decent enough hit to generate two sequels and a TV series.  Writer-director David Goyer clearly had plans to carry on the Blade franchise.  In fact he seemed to be using the third Blade movie to set up a series of spin-offs.  But instead, Blade: Trinity killed the series and ended up with everyone embroiled in a bitter lawsuit.

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Wesley Snipes Gallery

Marvel Movie Bracket Game: Blade Vs. Blade II

Blade Vs. Blade 2

Avengers: Age of Ultron kicks off the summer movie season on May 1.  To celebrate, we’re spending the first half of May looking at Marvel movies.  The superhero genre was dominated for decades by Warner Brothers with its Batman and Superman movies.  But in recent years, Marvel has become the dominant force.  Not only have they taken the momentum from their distinguished competition, they have pushed superheroes into the spotlight.  Nowadays, the cineplexes are overflowing with movies based on Marvel comics.  Which one will rise above the rest?  That’s up to you, True Believer.

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What the Hell Happened to Wesley Snipes?

Wesley Snipes

Wesley Snipes

At the top of his career, Wesley Snipes was an A-list action star who could also cross-over into comedy and drama as he saw fit.  Few actors can claim the kind of cross-genre success Snipes enjoyed.  But all that ended amid very public legal entanglements that ultimately landed Snipes in jail with a three-year sentence for failing to file tax returns.

If you take nothing else away from this article, remember this: No matter what anyone else tells you, you still need to file your taxes.

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