Apparently we weren’t the only five-year-olds intrigued by that wish-granting wiz behind a projector and smoke machine! The LA Times is reporting that Disney is itching to tell the oft-overlooked wizard’s tale of his life pre-Emerald City, with comeback kid Robert Downey Jr. in the starring role. The Great Powerful script is said to present a much darker, deeper wizard than the sillier character in the 1939 musical. If RD Jr.’s stellar performances as Tony Stark and Sherlock Holmes are any indication, this wizard is bound to be twinkly-eyed, charming, and totally captivating.
The two very different directors in contention are Alan Shankman (Hairspray) and Sam Mendes (Revolutionary Road). If all the pieces come together as planned, Disney would like to start shooting as early as next spring. Fingers crossed (and heels a’clickin’) for Downey! [Source: LA Times]
Anyone who’s seen the trailer for The Losers might have a hard time believing Zoe Saldana fought for “believability” on set, but that’s one of the reasons she claims she refused to do a nude fight scene for the action-packed comic book adaptation (co-starring Watchmen‘s Jeffrey Dean Morgan and future Captain America Chris Evans). “I literally told the director, ‘If I am going to do this scene, there is no way I’m going to be nude because it just isn’t necessary or even believable,’” she told Parade. “So there was a negotiation and I ended up in my bra and panties. I don’t mind using my physical assets as a weapon, but there’s a limit.” Saldana’s concealed weapons were on hand for the film’s LA premiere last night—see photos of the Avatar star and more in the gallery below.
He’s got a legendary grandpa, a superstar father and a step-mom who doesn’t do too bad for herself. Kirk Douglas, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones all wrote letters asking for a lenient jail-sentence for Cameron Douglas in the weeks leading up to his hearing. Looks like the pleas worked, because Judge Richard Berman handed Cameron a five-year jail sentence, instead of a much harsher 10-year stint, for dealing crystal meth. Berman said, “We all need to get over the theme that Cameron Douglas is a victim. Some of the letters reflect a somewhat naive and even misguided viewpoint.” He also warned, “I think this case and this sentencing may well be his last chance to make it.”
Apart from the letters, the judge also noted the eight months Cameron has already spent in jail. He also mentioned that if the troubled rich kid does a drug treatment program behind bars, another year could get shaved off the sentence. Cameron responded, reading from a prepared statement: “Nothing, your honor, is more important to me than my family and the goals that I have set for myself, and I feel adamant that I will not let myself be led astray by my warped thinking and false pretences due to my long heroin addiction.”
Interesingly, Berman also considered that very famous family’s history while doling out his final verdict, calling out “problematic parenting by both his mother and father in the forms of parental absence and distance, parental immaturity and drug and alcohol abuse in the immediate and extended famlies.” Whatever the dynamics may be, we’d say – stay strong Cameron. You ‘ll be out in no time. But third chances are hard to come by — even for kids of Hollywood’s elite. [Photo: Getty Images]
Poor James Cameron. He only goes and makes the highest-grossing movie ever—twice—and still the guy can’t get no respect. As if looking like an elderly lesbian wasn’t enough, he lost the Best Picture Oscar to his ex-wife and will have to put up with jokes about “Smurf-ahontas” for the rest of his life. But let’s applaud Avatar for what it is: an instance of new 3D IMAX technology masterfully employed to create old-fashioned popcorn entertainment. With added ecological subtext! We’ll be watching again to appreciate the genius that realized the only thing cooler than sinking the Titanic was aliens that look like cats.
- By C. Bottomley
Avatar hits the racks on Earth Day, 4/22.
Holy crap! Looks like Martin Bashir asked Jake Gyllenhaal the wrooong question about Reese Witherspoon! Either that or the actor was filming a fight scene in Toronto for his new movie Source Code (ok, that’s definitely what was happening). As much as we admired the work put into Jake’s pecs on the Prince Of Persia set, we must admit the sight of the suited stud unleashing the fury on some hapless hood looks a bit more enticing than that video game remake. Plus Source Code—about a soldier forced to relive a terrorist attack in another man’s body (think Avatar meets Groundhog Day)—will be directed by Duncan “Son Of Bowie” Jones, whose Moon was one of the most underrated films of last year. See more of Jake doing his own stunts in the gallery below.
[Photo: Splash News Online]
The LA premiere of The Back-Up Plan isn’t until next week, but Jennifer Lopez is already rocking the red carpet for her film. Lady Louboutins donned her finest animal print for a screening of the film in Miami last night, joined by husband Marc Anthony and a handful of local celebs (hey, it’s Miami). The film is actually earning some modest praise from early critics—and by “modest praise” we mean it’s a rom-com and no one’s scratched their eyes out yet. Will this be the comeback J. Lo needs? See more photos of her in the gallery below.
[Photo: Jonny Louis/.com]
The Weekly Daily Diff is our pop culture spin on the traditional “spot the difference” game. Check back every Wednesday for a new picture.
Ugly Betty is waving farewell to its fans after four seasons tonight, but that doesn’t mean America Ferrera will be left high and dry. America has already had major success on the big screen and is currently starring in two films right now. Check out America’s visit to the Today Show to promote her new film How to Train Your Dragon while sitting on a huge dragon, of course. Can you spot 10 differences in this pic of America? [Photo: Splash News Online]
You want to make fun of Nicolas Cage‘s money problems? Fine. His “frat house bordello” mansion sold for mere millions? That’s fine, too. Still laughing at those Wicker Man clips? Go right ahead, buddy. But never forget that Nic is awesome, too awesome to let his miserable finances keep him showing off his dynamic new blond mane at the LA premiere of his new film Kick-Ass.
Joining Cage in the freak parade were co-stars like Christopher “McLovin” Mintz-Plasse and 13-year-old pottymouth Chloe Moretz, as well as celebrity guests like Eli Roth, Nicky Hilton, Jon Voight (guess Mr. “Obama Rapes The Nation” isn’t offended by the teen violence!) and Cole & Dylan Sprouse—you know, Zack & Cody! Will there be enough adults—or older teenagers like the Sprouse brothers—interested in watching the underage swear and pummel to make the R-rated action-fest a hit? Hey, a high school cast didn’t keep Superbad from making millions. See these stars and more in the gallery below.
[Photo: Getty Images]
Looks like all those acrobatics lessons were for nothing. Not only did Chace Crawford lose the role of Captain America to Chris Evans, now the Gossip Girl star is walking away from the upcoming adaptation of Footloose after almost a year of pre-production. Initially set to star Zac Efron, the remake has been plagued by numerous problems, including the departure of its original director, Kenny Ortega of This Is It fame. While no official reason was given, it looks like Crawford’s Gossip Girl obligations—which the film’s missed March start date was meant to dance around—was likely the cause for his departure (Julianne Hough is still set to play the female foil).
Entertainment Weekly says the studio is considering a nationwide talent search to find a new star, and with two stylish young stars already passing on the material, it’s not surprising they’d look elsewhere for Plan C. But with no director yet announced as a replacement for Ortega (Hustle & Flow director Craig Brewer wrote the latest draft of the script, but is unavailable to shoot), this is looking less like the new Hairspray and more like the new Fame (if you’ve already forgot that was remade, we totally understand).
The Slammin’ Salmon
Having scored with Super Troopers and Beerfest, the members of the comic team Broken Lizard have made what could be the funniest film ever about waiting tables. The Slammin’ Salmon is a restaurant owned by a heavyweight boxer (Michael Clarke Duncan) who is in deep with the Japanese mob. The staff learn they must make $20,000 in a single night … or else Duncan will start handing out the haymakers. The assortment of goofy characters include an actor back taking orders after being thrown off a hit TV show, a drunken busboy and a blonde bombshell who has a close encounter with a flaming dessert. There are plenty of fart and dick jokes for those who like that sort of thing, but what’s really tasty about Salmon is the sense of a team of comic pros having dessert carts of fun serving each other one-liners. The cherry on the sundae? Not a “bromance” in sight. Look out for cameos from MacGruber‘s Will Forte, Vivica C. Fox, and Morgan Fairchild.
Extras: Two separate commentary tracks from the Broken Lizard guys, and a featurette on true tales from the kitchen.
- By C. Bottomley
Check out our VH1 exclusive DVD bonus clip, “Morgan and the Dootch.”