June 17, 2012 at 12:53 PM ET
Oh yes. THIS is summer. Two big movies and a big juicy HBO show all coming our way. Here are our three great entertainment picks for the next seven days.
FRIDAY: 'Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter'
As if his presidential deeds weren't enough, Abraham Lincoln's image is getting a fictional makeover. In the new movie "Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter," opening this week, our 16th president finds a new use for the axe he used to chop down trees. As a child, he learns that vampires, not illness, killed his mother, and vows revenge. And who doesn't want to see our lanky national hero swinging an axe and knocking down bloodsuckers? The film is based on Seth Grahame-Smith's novel. (Opens June 22.)
Flame-haired Merida is a Scottish princess who likes her independence. She's a talented archer, loves riding her horse, and sees no need to rush into marriage to one of the goony heirs from the other clans. But when she takes out her anger against her queen mum, strange things start to happen and Merida realizes how much she loves and needs her family. Although it doesn't quite have the heart-tugging pull of a "Toy Story," all Pixar films are kind of like that saying about pizza -- even when it's not great, it's still pretty good. (Opens June 22.)
SUNDAY: 'The Newsroom'
Aaron Sorkin's "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" didn't last, but that doesn't mean there's not a devoted audience who loves his whip-smart patter and smart characters. Sorkin's new HBO show, "The Newsroom," is set at a cable news network, with Jeff Daniels playing the veteran host who must deal with a new staff and his own moral quandries. But for fans, a Sorkin series could be set anywhere -- a sewage-treatment plant! the zoo! the grill at a McDonald's! -- and they'd tune in. Daniels told Entertainment Weekly that Sorkin's writing "is like lyric poetry." (Premieres June 24, 10 p.m., HBO.)What are you looking forward to in entertainment this week? Tell us on Facebook!