Snipes Sentenced to Slammer

by Tippi Blevins April 25, 2008 10:59 am
Snipes Sentenced to Slammer

For most of us, tax season is like a nightmare we finally woke up from and don't have to worry about for another eleven months. For Wesley Snipes, however, the nightmare is just beginning: The actor has now been handed a three-year prison sentence for tax evasion. Prosecutors argued for the harshest possible punishment under the law as a way to set an "example." What, because high profile tax crime cases are really making people think twice about not paying up? If that were the case, Snipes would have remembered Willie Nelson losing his property and his profits for a while in the 1990s and not gotten himself into this mess in the first place. Nelson himself would have remembered what happened to the infamous Al Capone and cut a check for Uncle Sam long before his troubles ever started.

Ang Lee Going Gay Again

by Kasey McDonald April 24, 2008 1:45 pm
Ang Lee Going Gay Again

Dark Horizons is reporting that Brokeback Mountain director Ang Lee will once again helm a movie portraying a gay main character, with the fairly awesome headline "Ang Lee Gay Again With Woodstock." The flick, fully titled Taking Woodstock and adapted from a 2007 Elliot Tiber book, tells the story of an in-the-closet artist who is head of the Chamber of Commerce in his small town. The town holds a yearly permit to hold summer music concerts, which he grants to the then-low key Woodstock festival to hold on his farmer neighbor's lawn. In addition to the Chamber job, the closeted main character also helps his Old World Jewish parents run their resort motel in the Catskill Mountains. (And yes, I'm actively refraining from making the requisite Dirty Dancing joke that immediately springs to mind due to my deep and abiding (and yes, adolescent) love for that movie.)

Billboard on the Big Screen

by Kasey McDonald April 24, 2008 1:33 pm
Billboard on the Big Screen

Hollywood is looking in unusual places again for movie ideas, and this time they've infiltrated the Billboard chart from 1973. The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that Producer Warren Zide has just picked up the film rights to the classic Jim Croce song "Bad Bad Leroy Brown." The film will be based on the title character, who in the song is a badass from the south side of Chicago who takes a liking to a married woman only to get beat up by her jealous husband. Though it's doubtful that the film's entire plot will revolve around that one snippet of story, Zide is hoping to turn it into an action-comedy franchise.

Smith's Stand-In and Stein's Stolen Song

by Odie Henderson April 23, 2008 3:57 pm
Smith's Stand-In and Stein's Stolen Song

You can't judge a book by its cover, and you can't judge a kid by his Pappy either. I just read in the Hollywood Reporter that Tom Cruise's son has a small role in Will Smith's upcoming movie, which wasn't odd until I read that Cruise's son was playing a younger version of the Fresh Prince. My mind immediately flashed to two images:
1. Will Smith's son Jaden, who was very good alongside his Pops in The Pursuit of Happyness, asking Jada Pinkett "why couldn't I play Dad? Is he mad I upstaged him in that last movie?"
2. Robert Downey Jr., armed with a big vat of makeup and a cigarette, telling Cruise's son the finer points of blackface makeup. "You gotta make sure you're the same color as Will, so we're going to mix Browns number 5, 42 and 9."

Flop of the Valkyries

by Odie Henderson April 23, 2008 12:04 pm
Flop of the Valkyries

You'd think Ishtar would have convinced celebrities that giving their movies odd names usually guarantees a flop. If the audience isn't sure how to pronounce the movie's title, they're going to opt for something easier to say. Ken Russell once came up with a provocative ad campaign for his dismal mess, Whore, wherein the poster said "if you can't say it, just see it." Perhaps United Artists can use the same tactic when (or should I say if) Tom Cruise's Valkyrie finally opens. What 12-year old boy (and believe me, Hollywood markets everything to 12 year old boys) can pronounce it, let alone knows what a Valkyrie is? Hell, Microsoft Word, which I believe is 12 years old now, doesn't even know. It keeps flagging that word as a typo.

Amelia Finally Takes Off

by Tippi Blevins April 22, 2008 4:45 pm
<I>Amelia</I> Finally Takes Off

Set to begin filming this month is Amelia, a biopic about aviation heroine and larger-than-life historical figure of some controversy, Amelia Earhart. Cast as the titular character is Hilary Swank, who continues her streak of playing tough girls (and boys) who defy convention before meeting an untimely end. Physically speaking, Swank looks like a good choice to play the "tomboy" aviatrix, although there's no word yet on how close filmmakers will be sticking to historical details. Earhart, suffering from repeated bouts of severe sinusitis (which has to suck for a pilot), sometimes had a drainage tube coming out of her face to let out the accumulated mucus. As I mentioned earlier this month, one way for actors to get respect is to get ugly, but copious oozing might be pushing the gritty boundaries of reality just a tad. Not that Swank is hurting for respect after winning two Oscars. Although maybe it wouldn't hurt to build up the stores a bit, in case there's another The Reaping in her future.

Forbidden Kingdom Kicks Butt at the Box Office

by DeAnn Welker April 21, 2008 3:08 pm
<I>Forbidden Kingdom</I> Kicks Butt at the Box Office

Judd Apatow and friends (and the studio promotional vehicle) tried as hard as they could, but they couldn't hold back the martial arts tandem of Jackie Chan and Jet Li (who could, really?) as The Forbidden Kingdom fought its way to the top of the weekend box office, taking in $20.9 million on 3,200 screens, compared to $17.3 million on 2,800 screens for Forgetting Sarah Marshall. That's about $6,500 a screen for Jet Li and Jackie Chan; but the $6,200 take per screen for Jason Segel and Kristen Bell is nothing to sneeze at, either.

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