Saturday, August 30, 2008

Just Because, Pt. 19

I have got to learn Madonna’s “Sticky & Sweet Tour” choreography for “Vogue.”

O.

M.

G.

Photo: Madonnalicious.com.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Talk About Someone Who Should Be a Bigger Deal in America

Kylie Minogue, I’m into you, I’m into you.

What can I say – I can’t resist.

I said it before, that you’re something fierce, but, really, you are just, “Wow.”

Photo: 991.com.

Update: I’m sooo surprised – and jealous! – that Kylie Minogue is going to perform in Peru...on my birthday.

Please, please, please come to Miami, already!
You Got That Right

EW.com has named Guy Ritchie and Madonna the Best Power Couple of the fall movie season.

His RocknRolla premieres in London on Sept. 1.

Her Filth and Wisdom is due out stateside, in limited release, on Oct. 17.

These ones are hot tickets, so get them while they’re…uhh…hot.

Photo: EW.com.

Update 1: Almost forgot: M’s “Re-Invention Tour” will (probably) be released this fall, too.

Update 2: Uh, attention Three Custom Color Specialists: Madonna stole my New York Fashion Week face look.

And Starring Justin Timberlake

He can sing, he can dance, and he can act.

Justin Timberlake’s is taking another stab at an acting career with a new multimedia William Rast campaign.

William Rast is the clothing label he co-founded in 2005 with friend Trace Ayala, and although he’s kept a low profile within it he’s finally stepping into the spotlight to star as the fictional William Rast in the fall/winter 2008-’09 campaign.

Starring Timberlake, My Name is William Rast is a series of Web shorts he co-wrote, co-directed (with Jonas Åkerlund), and composed, and in the first, co-starring supermodel Erin Wasson, the multi-hyphenate introduces William Rast to the world.

Photo: Vogue.co.uk.
Yes He Can!

“Eight is enough.”

That is just what Sen. Barack Obama told the crowd in Denver last night, when he accepted the Democratic presidential nomination, securing his place in history as the first African-American to lead a major party ticket and laying out his plan for change in America.

Obama delivered a rousing speech, which you can watch here and here.

He repeatedly pitted himself against his Republican rival, John McCain, and said, “We are here because we love this country too much to let the next four years look just like the last eight. On Nov. 4, we must stand up and say: ‘Eight is enough.’”

I really wish I could help make a difference in this election, that a vote of mine, like my taxes, could count for something – that I could Barack the Vote.

Alas, that’s not going to happen…so I’m supporting Sen. Obama and Joe Biden, the next POTUS and VP, by purchasing a button ASAP that I plan on wearing until Election Day. A change is coming soon.

Every bit counts.

Photo: CNN.com.
Age Is an Illusion

In The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Brad Pitt plays an old man who physically ages backward.

At age 50, Benjamin Button falls in love with a 30-year-old woman – and then must come to terms with their budding relationship as the two literally grow in opposite directions.

The film was directed by David Fincher and co-stars two former Pitt co-stars, Cate Blanchett (Babel) and Tilda Swinton (next month’s Burn After Reading). It will open on Christmas Day.

Photo: EW.com.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

The 1000th Post

It’s been less than a year since I celebrated my 100th post.

Jeez – I really ought to turn this into a venture that pays money not just satisfaction.

It’s good to still be “Into the Groove,” though. It’s very good.

Photo: Confidential Source.
I Like It, How I Like It, When I Like It, Alright

Hey Lindsay Lohan,

Your buzz-building song “Bossy,” which will appear in your Nov. 4 album, Spirit in the Dark, and on which you worked with Ne-Yo, it’s growing on me.

And I don’t got a problem with it.

Photo: People.com.
A Few Questions, Mr. President

This December, Ron Howard will follow up his Da Vinci Code with Frost/Nixon, a dramatic retelling of the post-Watergate television interviews between British talk-show host David Frost and former president Richard Nixon.

Frank Langella, a Tony Award winner for his turn in the original stage production in 2007, portrays Nixon, while The Queen’s Michael Sheen (who should’ve been nominated for and Oscar for playing Tony Blair in that film) portrays Frost.

Frost/Nixon, which looks like an exhilarating piece of history on film, was written by Peter Morgan. It opens in limited release on Dec. 5.

Photo: Universal Pictures.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Duh’nuh-nuh-nuh, Duh’nuh-nuh-nuh

Swoosh swoosh!

The return of America’s favorite zip code – and Shannen Doherty! – is upon us, and Jennie Garth and Doherty are gracing the cover of Entertainment Weekly this week to let everyone know about it.

This is major for The CW, an upstart network that in spite of having buzzed-about shows like Gossip Girl and Smallville on schedule – and having once had Veronica Mars and Gilmore Girls as its crown jewels – had yet to score this type of coverage.

Not since Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I don’t think, has EW given young-adult-targeted shows such a plum spot.

The article covers the reunion between the old co-stars, who appear to have left the past in the past, next to those persistent fistfight rumors.

It also contains their in-unison “No” when they were asked if they ever imagined they’d be working together again, and previews and spoilers about the 90210 remake that’s bringing Brenda Walsh from London back to California and for a visit with her frenemy Kelly Taylor.

I cannot wait for the two-hour premiere on Sept. 2. It’s going to be great to see these two on screen.

Photo: EW.com.
Sink or Swim Live

Michael Phelps, the 29th Olympiad’s golden boy, has been tapped to guest host the 33rd season premiere of Saturday Night Live on Sept. 13.

SNL’s musical guest for the night will be Lil Wayne, the source of the gold-medalist’s pre-swim warm-up tunes.

Going from one high-stakes event to another seems to Phelps’ style, huh.

Photo: People.com.
Here Comes the Mad Rain

DreamWorks Pictures released today the original documentary Rain of Madness, a companion piece to Tropic Thunder, for download exclusively on iTunes.


Starring Jay Baruchel, Jack Black, Steve Coogan, Robert Downey Jr., Bill Hader, Nick Nolte, and Ben Stiller, Rain of Madness serves as a documentary of the making-of the feature film.

It was shot on location in Hawaii, at the same locations used in Tropic Thunder, and details the demise of the fictitious cast and crew of the action comedy, as they struggle to finish shooting their film despite numerous shooting, budgeting, and casting problems.

“We wanted to do a fake documentary about the making of the movie within the movie, which is called Tropic Thunder – not the actual movie Tropic Thunder,” said Stiller, one of the stars of the documentary and the director-producer-star and co-writer of Tropic Thunder.

“The fake documentary focuses on the real movie’s fake director, and what happens to the fake cast before they go into the real jungle. It’s pretty straightforward.”

Sure it is. It sounds pretty funny, though.

Photo: DreamWorks Pictures.
Have You Heard?

Gossip Girl’s sophomore season on The CW premieres on Monday, but the first five minutes of the first episode back have leaked, and here they are.

C’mon, watch it. You know you want to….

XOXO

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

New York, New York!

Opening on Feb. 13, 2009, and taking a page from the lovely Paris, Je T’aime, comes New York, I Love You, an anthology of love stories set in and around the Big Apple.

Helmed by directors such as Scarlett Johansson, Shekhar Kapur, Mira Nair, Natalie Portman, and Brett Ratner, the film stars – brace yourself – Chris Cooper, Drea de Matteo, Blake Lively, Portman (pictured at right on set), Rachel Bilson, Andy Garcia, Ethan Hawke, Olivia Thirlby, Julie Christie, Shia LaBeouf, Orlando Bloom, Maggie Q, and the most connected man in Hollywood – really living up to his legend with this one – Mr. Six Degrees himself, Kevin Bacon.

The city that never sleeps never stops dreaming, says New York, I Love You’s trailer, and I can’t wait to pay it another visit.

Photo: Celebrity-Gossip.net.
Just Like Jennifer Aniston

I totally get what Jennifer Aniston meant when she told Vanity Fair that, “There’s a sensitivity chip that’s missing,” after her split from Brad Pitt back in 2005.

Some people just don’t get it.

You know….

Photo: VanityFair.com.
OK, OK…

Alright, Katy Perry, I get it – you kissed a girl. And you liked it.

But do you think you can you get “Hot ’N Cold” on our collective behinds, already? You’re about to go from Song of Summer material to overplayed.

I say this because I like you.

Photo: StarPulse.com.

Monday, August 25, 2008

The Return of Ana Lucia Cortez

Michelle Rodriguez (pictured at right with former co-stars Josh Holloway’s sexy back and Harold Perrineau) is said to be set to reprise her fan-polarizing role as Ana Lucia Cortez in Lost’s fifth season next year.

The actress will appear in one episode, most likely the second one back.

Whether Ana Lucia will be back in a flashback or as one of the ghostly vision for which the show’s known remains to be seen.


Uh duh.

Photo: EW.com.
A Fevered Pitch

ABC’s promising that the fifth season of Desperate Housewives will be “even juicier,” and to get its point across it produced a promo starring the ladies of Wisteria Lane, featuring Madonna’s version of “Fever.” Check it out:



Click here to watch the making of the promo. The show returns on Sept. 28.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Putting Her Heart Into It – And Then Some

Madonna’s kicking off her “Sticky & Sweet Tour” in Cardiff, Wales, tonight.

Are you just so excited?

Click here to take a look-see at another photo from the dress rehearsal.

Sooo cute! (Love the hair.)

Photo: DrownedMadonna.com.

Update: She did it.

Madonna got the “Sticky & Sweet” party started in Wales, welcoming 40,000 fans into her “Candy Shop.”

The show featured amazing costumes and on-screen appearances by Pharrell, Britney Spears, Kanye West, and Justin Timberlake.

Toward the end, she paused to shout to the crowd, “This is the bit where I take requests” – singing “Express Yourself” then changing her mind (“F--- that s---. I choose the songs,” she said) – and then launched into a crowd-pleasing “Like a Prayer,” finishing with “Give It 2 Me.”

After two hours, M left the stage as the screen flashed “Game Over.”

No, no…you’ve only just begun. See you soon! To see some opening night photos, click here. For more, which you know you want, get on the Google.
Not Just a Spy You Know…

I’ve been previewing fall movies a lot lately, and there’s not one but two that call Daniel Craig their star opening as the year winds down.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t tell you about the other one, the one that’s not Quantum of Solace – and let’s face it, any of excuse to write about Craig is a good one.

So here’s your reminder about Defiance.

Opening on Dec. 12, the Edward Zwick-directed film stars Craig, Liev Schreiber, and Jamie Bell as real-life brothers who escaped the Nazis to form a resistance army of runaway Jews in Belarus during World War II.

This one’s awards bait, so don’t miss it.


Photo: EW.com.

Update: Aw, bummer! Quantum of Solace is now opening on Nov. 14, not on Nov. 7, a.k.a. a day after my birthday.

The strategic move places the highly anticipated James Bond adventure one week closer to the prime Thanksgiving holiday window and takes advantage of Warner Bros.’ decision to move the release date of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince to next summer.

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Sound of the End of Cancer

I was listening to Top 40 this morning (I heart it, deal with it) when they played “Just Stand Up” the latest from 15 of the hottest female singers in the world – including Beyoncé, Mariah Carey, Rihanna, Fergie, and Carrie Underwood.

The singers came together for the single, a collaboration that also features Mary J. Blige, Sheryl Crow, Miley Cyrus, Melissa Etheridge, and Leona Lewis, that was conceived by “L.A.” Reid, who produced it with Babyface.

“Just Stand Up” will benefit next month’s Stand Up to Cancer television event’s fund-raising drive.

So stand up and donate. The star-studded special will air on Sept. 5 on ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC, at 8 p.m.

Photo: HardCandyMusic.com.

Update:
This special is going to be strictly A-List. Check out who will be attending: Halle Berry, Ellen DeGeneres, Jennifer Garner, Mandy Moore, Jack Black, Jimmy Fallon, Fran Drescher, Elizabeth Edwards, Neil Patrick Harris, Masi Oka, Christina Ricci, Rob Lowe, Meryl Streep, Abigail Breslin, Josh Brolin, Salma Hayek, and Homer and Marge Simpson, among many others.

Oh, and Fox is not involved. My bad.
When Robin Met Mary J.

Be still my heart.

Mary J. Blige is coming back to South Florida – and she’s bringing Robin Thicke with her when she goes.

Blige and the Thickster are teaming up for a fall tour in support of her still-selling Growing Pains and his latest, Something Else.

They will be at the BankAtlantic Center in Fort Lauderdale on Oct. 10. MJB (da MVP) had better belt “Come to Me (Peace)” this time around. She’s got to make up for Miami back in March.

Tickets go on sale tomorrow. Put on To Do List: Get MJB and RT tickets.

Photo: E! Online.
Marley – Not Just a Name But an Attitude

I can’t wait to see Miami in December’s Marley & Me.

And Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston, too.

Photo: EW.com.
Girl Got Power

A friend of mine recently turned me on to Little Jackie’s “The World Should Revolve Around Me” and I love this song. It’s got Brooklyn spunk.

Talk about empowering.

It’s a You-know-what song, you know, like, You know what, you have Haterade for breakfast, I know who I am and what I want and if you can’t keep up, well that’s too bad. Bye.

Oh, Little Jackie, what big things I expect from you now. Sorry I missed you at The Florida Room at the Delano last week.

Photo: 2008.SXSW.com.
There Goes the Neighborhood

It’s not the remake for which I so hope, but a Melrose Place cast reunion will do for now.

Word is producers are trying to organize cast reunions to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Emmy Awards next month by bringing together again the casts of several fan favorites – and the cast of Melrose Place is said to be at the top of their list.

Heather Locklear, you better get yourself a mini-skirted gown pronto.

Photo: TV.Yahoo.com.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Hittin’ It

It’s not often that I read books that have been adapted into films before they open in theaters, but I feel inspired to do so now that I’ve joined a book club.

My first choice is Cormac McCarthy’s 2006 post-apocalyptic novel The Road, which is getting the silver-screen treatment on Nov. 14.

In the film, co-starring Charlize Theron and Guy Pearce, Viggo Mortensen plays a dying man who, armed with a pistol, tries to lead his young son to safety.

I hope I’ll love this “New Classic” as much as others have.

Photo: EW.com.
You Don’t Have to Wait

The fairer half of TomKat, Katie Holmes (natch), is about to make her Broadway debut in Arthur Miller’s All My Sons next month, and this is what the play’s poster looks like.

The one-sheet for the revival highlights, rather democratically, the actress, along with co-stars John Lithgow, Dianne Wiest, and Patrick Wilson.

All My Sons opens on Oct. 16, with previews beginning on Sept. 18.

Photo: People.com.

Update:
According to an MSNBC report, Broadway fans are not warming up to the erstwhile Joey Potter and ticket sales are “off from what [was] hoped,” although a publicist for the play says, “That information is totally false.”
Ride to the Theater

Daniel Radcliffe wants theatergoers everywhere to know that taking the stage in Peter Schaffer’s Equus “has given me a little more confidence” – and that his much-talked-about nude scene is not that big a deal.

“It’s only seven minutes at the end of the play,” he told the audience at a talk held by The New York Times a couple of days ago.

Equus, which had a successful West End run last year, begins previews on Broadway on Sept. 5.

Leave your cameras and pervy nerve at home.

Photo: NYMag.com.
Love and Music in New York

Arrested Development made him one to watch.

Superbad and Juno helped him break out.

Oct. 3’s Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist should make him a star.

I’m talking about Michael Cera.

See him in the upcoming rom-com as Nick, a music snob who falls for Norah (The House Bunny’s Kat Dennings, a fellow up-and-comer) as the two chase their favorite band around the streets of New York City.

Photo: EW.com.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Through the Rain

It’s been far too long since I last shared news about Lauren Graham.

I recently caught the trailer for the Greg Kinnear vehicle Flash of Genius, in which Graham plays his wife, and I just had to share.

The movie is based on the true story of college professor and part-time inventor Bob Kearns (Kinnear), who battled with the U.S. automobile industry to receive recognition for his ingenuity (he invented the intermittent windshield wiper) but paid a significant price for it.

Yes, it sounds like a stock part, but in Graham’s capable hands I’m sure it will be something memorable and vivid.

Photo: Universal Pictures.
Papi!

Ricky Martin’s a daddy.

Alright, that sounds kind of sexier than I meant it….

The singer recently became the father of twin sons, his publicist announced today.

“The children, delivered via gestational surrogacy, are healthy and already under Ricky’s full-time care,” said the statement. “Ricky is elated to begin this new chapter in his life as a parent and will be spending the remainder of the year out of the public spotlight in order to spend time with his children.”

Congratulations, and have fun livin’ la vida baby, baby.

Photo: PearlsOfMyGarden.com.
The Heroes and the Villains Are Coming

A new extended preview of Heroes’ third season, premiering on Sept. 22 on NBC, has been released, and evidently, “no one is safe.”

This must-see show’s back. Watch the preview and get giddy with anticipation:


Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Reunited, and It Feels So…“Awkward”

You may have read – if you live for this sort of thing – that Kate Winslet has said re-creating her Titanic chemistry with Leonardo DiCaprio in front of her director-husband Sam Mendes was “awkward.”

That can only mean one thing.

The two stars must get it on but good in Dec. 19’s Revolutionary Road – and that’s about reason enough to watch the film as soon as it opens.

Winslet and DiCaprio…they’ve never let go.

Photo: Kistenet.com.

Life on Neptune

Attention, Veronica Mars fans: A movie based on the dearly departed cult show is being talked about by its two most important players, show creator Rob Thomas, and star Kristen Bell.

The two met last week in the offices of Thomas’ Hollywood-based production company, located on the same lot where Bell is shooting NBC’s Heroes.

“Kristen and I ran into each other, and we did discuss a Veronica Mars movie," said Thomas. “It’s very tough to focus on it right now with two pilots [a reworking of his 1990’s dramedy Cupid and an adaptation of the New Zealand series Outrageous Fortune] on my plate. But as soon as I have any free time, that’s my top priority.”

For her part, a more cautious Bell said, “We’ll see.”

Please, you two, make it happen. Pretty please, with lots of wit on top of it.

Photo: EW.com.
Sex – and Love – y La Ciudad

After decades spent telling classic New York City-set stories of love, neurosis, and relationships (and how they relate to one another), Woody Allen decided to explore other locales for inspiration, arriving in London to set his Match Point, Scoop, and Cassandra’s Dream.

The results were uneven.

Match Point re-invigorated Allen’s status as one of America’s most interesting directors, but his follow-ups failed to connect with critics and/or audiences.

His latest film, the Spanish-set Vicky Cristina Barcelona, is an inspired one about love and sex (neurosis has been replaced by passionate temporary insanity). It tells the story of two American tourists spending the summer in the titular city. Vicky (Rebecca Hall) is tightly wound, pragmatic, and engaged to be married to a dull fellow back in New York, while Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) is more of a free-spirit, go-with-the-flow kind of gal.

While in Barcelona, they encounter tall, dark, and handsome Juan Antonio (Javier Bardem), a charmer who sweeps them off their feet for a loverly weekend in Oviedo, with one of the most phenomenal, effective, and ballsy pick-up lines I ever heard.

The three embark on an adventure (Vicky is quite reluctant at first, though), one that changes their summer plans, if not their lives forever. That is in theory, at least.

They forged connections that will immediately and eventually rear their sexy heads at the most inopportune times. It is as if they are ingredients for another’s lives, but it’s isn’t until Penélope Cruz, as Juan Antonio’s unstable, fire-cracking, alluring ex-wife, that Vicky Cristina Barcelona stirs its plot pot to achieve a delicious result.

The two Americans are at a crossroads by the end of the film. They’re scared, and I’m sure they’re wondering what’s it all about. You’re just going to have to watch to find out what they decide.

Love is a many splendored thing, and in this film, it’s a person’s desire, their fate, and their undoing. Allen delivers an honest look at this, shows us people do settle for love, or are restless for it. And we wouldn’t have it any other way, would we.

I really enjoyed Vicky Cristina Barcelona, and not just because I’ve interviewed Bardem (for The Sea Inside) and co-star Patricia Clarkson (for Married Life) – that’s just gravy. This film has style – it’s beautifully photographed – and substance, and that’s simply too irresistible a combination.

My Rating ***1/2

Photo: The Weinstein Company.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Cancer, Schmancer

Just a month after being diagnosed with breast cancer, Christina Applegate has said she’s perfectly healthy and cancer-free.

“I’m clear,” the erstwhile Kelly Bundy told Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts in an exclusive interview that will air tomorrow. “Absolutely 100 percent clear and clean. They got everything out so I’m definitely not going to die from breast cancer.”

Good for her!

Applegate started getting mammograms six years ago after she turned 30. The cancer was found through the second of two MRI tests as a follow-up from a biopsy she had in 2007.

During the interview Applegate laughed about her reaction to the initial diagnosis, but perhaps only to offset the fear she felt then.

“I was so mad and I – I just remember I was…I was just shaking,” she said.

Expect to see see the Emmy-nominated star of ABC’s Samantha Who? in next month’s Stand Up to Cancer television event. The special will air on Sept. 5 on ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC, at 8 p.m.

Photo: Wikimedia.com.

Update:
The actress revealed during the interview that she underwent a double mastectomy – even though cancer was only detected in one of her breasts.

Applegate described her decision, which some people may see as a radical one, as “the most logical” one for her (she has the breast cancer gene, BRCA1, and her mother battled the disease and suffered from a recurrence years later).
Madonna Is the New 50

What did you do on Saturday?

Madonna celebrated her 50th birthday with “a small party [of] family and friends” at Volstead, a trendy club in London.

The shindig reportedly was organized by her not-so-estranged-after all husband Guy Ritchie, who was even seen smiling with the missus going into the club. (There’s a hint of it in the picture at right, but if you go on the Google you can actually see both their pearly whites, trust.)

“She looks better now than she ever has done,” he told the 90 gathered guests, according to The Sun. “I’m so proud. I love her so much.”

Among the highlights of the evening, which had people dancing until 3 a.m. were Madonna's daughter Lourdes serenading her on the piano, and David Blaine performing card tricks. (Yeah – even M has to deal with obnoxious tricksters at her own party.)

Later, as the DJ played the singer’s greatest hits, she hit the dance floor with Lourdes and sons Rocco and David.

The Queen of Pop – loving those extensions, by the way – was back in the gym the next day. Someone took it easy on the lemon drops….

Photo: People.com.
Mrs. & Mrs.

Best wishes go to Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi.

The happy couple tied the knot over the weekend in Los Angeles, three months after announcing their plans after California’s Supreme Court ruled a previous ban on gay marriage to be unconstitutional.

DeGeneres and de Rossi both wore Zac Posen – check out their wedding looks at right, courtesy of the intrepid British media – and were married in an intimate ceremony for about 20 guests.

George Takei, you’re next.

Photo: DailyMail.co.uk.

Update:
For an official look at the DeGeneres-de Rossi photo album, click here.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

I Want It

Hot, huh?

The chair, of course. The chair.

Because, Adam Levine, “If I never see your face again, I don’t mind.”

(I just told a lie.)

Photo: SarahMoffett.com.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Ma50nna!

It happened 50 years ago today: Madonna Louise Veronica Ciccone was born in Bay City, Mich.

The Queen of Pop didn’t ascend to her throne until she was 26, but once she did, once she told the world her dream was to rule it, it never would be the same.

A singer-songwriter (from “Lucky Star” to “Voices,” her sound has been re-invented as many times as her look), an actress, a producer, a writer, a director; a provocateur; a revolutionary; a sexual fantasy; a mother and wife; and icon – she has done it pretty much all.

It’s safe to say she’s just getting started, so don’t you ever, ever, ever ask her to stop.

At 50, she can kick, stretch, and kick again. She’s the gift that keeps on giving, and today, I cel-e-brate.

Happy Birthday, M!

Photo: PhotoBucket.com.

Friday, August 15, 2008

In and Out of the Pool

My week’s obsession, British swimmer Mark Foster, is done in Beijing.

Foz didn’t make it through to the semi-finals of the 50-meter free style after finishing sixth in his heat yesterday. After 22.35 seconds, the 38-year-old’s Olympic dreams – Beijing marks his fifth Olympiad, by the way – were over.

“I was more nervous than I have ever been ahead of the heat and was disappointed with the way I swam, but in my heart-of-hearts I knew I wasn’t capable of winning a medal,” Foster blogged for the Telegraph.

“In the warm-up I felt awful, in the sprints I felt OK, but back in there I was just awful.

“I’ve enjoyed [Beijing] more than any other Olympics. It was a wonderful honour to carry the flag at the opening ceremony. It was possibly the Olympic medal for me I’ve always missed, but I’ve been waiting to get out there and race.”

You made not have medaled, but you won a fan or four.

Photo: Olympics.org.uk.
Guilty as Charged

Scene-stealing isn’t a crime, but if it were then Danny McBride would be guilty on two counts.

Exhibit A: Pineapple Express. (That’s him next to James Franco and Seth Rogen.)

Exhibit B: Tropic Thunder.

This guy’s pretty darn funny.

Photo: Flickr.com.
Bound for Summer School

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, originally scheduled to open on Nov. 21, will now cast its spell on audiences on July 17, 2009.

According to Alan Horn, president and chief operating officer of Warner Bros., the move was a strategic one – there was an open weekend in Hollywood’s busy summer season – and not due to any production problems.

“The picture is completely, absolutely, 100 percent on schedule, on time,” Horn said. “There were no delays. I’ve seen [it]. It is fabulous. We would have been perfectly able to have it out in November.”

And so anticipation builds. Can you wait for the magic?

Photo: Warner Bros.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Crazy for It

And this is what I call an exclusive: After four years, the long-awaited DVD of Madonna’s “Re-Invention Tour” is finally ready to arrive in stores, probably for the holidays, early 2009 at the latest.

The holdup was a rights disagreement, I believe.

The tour, chronicled in the documentary I’m Going to Tell You a Secret, was the Queen of Pop’s most crowd-pleasing in years. It featured such hits as “Vogue,” “Express Yourself,” “Burning Up,” and “Into the Groove,” as well as several songs from her underrated American Life album.

I saw her, for the first time, on three occasions that year, twice in Fort Lauderdale and once in Miami.

I loved it – and I will do anything to see her “Sticky & Sweet Tour” show in Miami later this year.

Anything.

In case you were wondering.

Photo: Confidential Source.

Just Because, Pt. 18

Natalie Maines, you have your Adrian Pasdar (and – trust – some of us strongly dislike you for it), and I bet you create an “Easy Silence” for each other and all….

But can you share?

No?


Alrighty then, the following will have to do (when’s the next Dixie Chicks album dropping, anyway?):


Better Than Thought?

Arriving on Boxing Day – that’s Dec. 26 – will be Tom Cruise’s much-maligned Valkyrie, bumped back to 2008 from a February ’09 release.

The Bryan Singer-directed project, about a plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler during the height of WWII, was supposed to come out this summer, if memory serves, then this fall.

A plum holiday, awards-season-friendly slot means Valkyrie musn’t be so bad, after all.

The movie co-stars Kenneth Branagh, Tom Wilkinson, Terence Stamp, Thomas Kretschmann (Wanted – I’ll say), and Eddie Izzard.

Photo: SlashFilm.com.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

War Games

I’ve had a bit of a love-hate relationship with Tropic Thunder.

Directed and co-written (with actor Justin Theroux and Etan Cohen) and co-starring Ben Stiller (pulling triple duty for the first time since 2001’s Zoolander), the action comedy has been on my radar for months – ever since co-star Robert Downey Jr. gave summer a solid start with Iron Man.

Tropic Thunder would bookend Downey’s summer. The question was would it be a hit and keep him in our and Hollywood’s good graces…or would it flop? (It is opening in August, which has undergone a re-invention at the movie theater in recent years, but still – it’s the dog days.)

The actor plays Kirk Lazarus, an Aussie Method actor so committed to his craft he undergoes an experimental extreme makeover to play an African-American in the movie within the movie (i.e., he’s in blackface for most of the movie).

This is just one of the outrageously risky lengths to which Tropic Thunder dares to go for a laugh.

The movie surely raised eyebrows within the African-American community because of this, although, from what Stiller, Downey, and Jack Black told Entertainment Weekly, at least one African-American (Brandon T. Jackson, who plays Alpa Chino, a rapper-cum-actor/energy drink hawker) made sure no lines were crossed.

Disability advocacy groups, however, picketed the movie’s premiere this week, to protest the movie’s repeated use of the word “retard.” You can’t please everyone, and this is an R-rated comedy, and in its context everything works. But I can see their point. It’s a sensitive matter.

I digress, though.

The point is the movie – about a group of self-absorbed actors led by Stiller’s Tugg Speedman, a dimming (and dim-witted) action star, that sets out to make the most expensive Vietnam War film ever but finds itself in the middle of a real-life hot zone – is hilarious.

Tropic Thunder takes potshots at Hollywood in so many Oh-no-they-di’n’t ways it’s quite incredible.

There’s Stiller channeling, say, a Tom Cruise, Downey evoking Russell Crowe, and Black, as Jeff Portnoy, the star of the flatulent Fatties franchise, poking fun at Eddie Murphy – IMHO.

And the cameos…the cameos are just terrific, especially…ha! …Tom Cruise’s, who’s unrecognizable as a bald, fat, crass, cussing, merciless studio head. Add to them the too-funny faux trailers that play before the movie and you have a crazy meta-fest that’s pretty cool.

Tropic Thunder – as its tagline says: Get some. You’ll love it, and perhaps you’ll hate yourself a little for it. But you’ll laugh, and that’s a cure-all.

My Rating ****

Photo: DreamWorks Pictures.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

9021-Oh the Drama

When Beverly Hills, 90210 went off the air after a decade in 2000, it went down as one of TV’s top dramas, because of what was happening on and off screen.

The CW’s remake premiering in less than a month, 90210, promises the same.

The blogosphere recently reported that original-flavor cast member Tori Spelling will not reprise her role as Donna Martin in the remake due to a salary dispute. Spelling is said to have been offered “$10,000-$20,000” per episode – a lot less than the “$35,000-$50,000” per episode offered to ol’ co-stars Shannen Doherty and Jennie Garth.

“[The press thinks Shannen and I a]re at war over salary with Tori,” said Garth, who will once again play Kelly Taylor in 90210. “I didn’t know I was at war with Tori.

“I’m really bummed because I love Tori and I was psyched [she] was going to be on the show. I think she should definitely get paid as much as either of us is getting paid. Her father [the late Aaron Spelling] created the show. It just seems wrong if that’s the case.”

Doherty, who will finally return to her famous zip code as much-missed Brenda Walsh, says she isn’t taking the reports at face value – and that we shouldn’t, either.

“They didn’t even get the numbers right,” she said, “so I don’t know if it’s about the money.”

All The CW had to say about the controversy was, “[We] ha[ve] no deal with Tori Spelling to appear on 90210 at this time.”

Duh’nuh-nuh-nuh, Duh’nuh-nuh-nuh – swoosh swoosh!

Photo: EW.com.

Update: Click here ASAP for your first look at a new promo featuring Shannen Doherty and Jennie Garth together on screen again. The original frenemies are back!
Keeps on Pushing

Her “Sticky & Sweet Tour” is but 11 days away – and her 50th birthday only four – but Madonna is not about to let a sprained ankle keep her from pushing herself like nobody.

The Daily Mirror was the first to report the Queen of Pop’s injury, while today, Perez Hilton offered photographic evidence of it.

Take it easy, M. We know you’ve got work to do, but as long as you flash your million-watt smile on stage this summer and fall, we won’t mind that much if you skip the rope-jumping on a few tour stops.

But just a few, alright. Don’t you be taking liberties.

Photo: Guardian.co.uk.

Monday, August 11, 2008

You Tell Them, Mary

I haven’t written about Mary J. Blige in a bit and a half, so here I are.

In case you didn’t get her Growing Pains yet and want to know “What Love Is” to Blige, “it feels like joy, and it feels like pain / And it feels like sunshine, feels like rain.”

Just thought you’d like to know. Now go back to the Olympics.

Photo: AshMagazine.WordPress.com.
Just Like Madonna, I’m Having a Case of the Anglophilias

Let me go with the Union Jack theme, alright. I promise by tonight I will have changed my tune.

I def want to go to London (in 2012) I’m sooo into British swimmer Mark Foster, as it’s become obvious, even more now that I’ve heard Lily Allen’s buzz-building “F--- You Very Much.”

Hey – I say that all that time. I should’ve put it into song, I guess.

Glad to hear Allen’s coming back from her too-long visit to Troublesville sounding good.

Photo: Babble.com.

Swim

Can someone please tell me if British swimmer Mark Foster has competed at the 29th Olympiad yet…or do I’ve yet to miss him?

And what do you think of NBCOlympics.com’s Ab Fab: Guess the Swimmer gallery?

I know, right.

Photo: Telegraph.co.uk.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

That Sucks

For some reason – a good production company publicist perhaps? People.com featured this week an exclusive sneak peek at Sept. 12’s The Women.

In the clip, Mary Haines (Meg Ryan) is just expecting a routine nail appointment. What she gets, though, is some disturbing news about her husband, courtesy of a chatty manicurist played by Debi Mazar.

We’ve all been there, right? Finding out something somebody we care about is doing…from someone else.


Not fun. Not fun at all.

Photo: Picturehouse.
R.I.P. Big Mac

Comedian Bernie Mac died of pneumonia yesterday. Mac was 50 years old.


“The world just got a little less funny, said his Ocean’s Eleven co-star George Clooney. “He will be missed dearly.”

Another Ocean’s player, Brad Pitt, said, “I lament the loss of a ferociously funny and hardcore family man. My thoughts are with [his wife] Rhonda and their family. Bernie Mac, you are already missed.”

Photo: WKLU.net.