A Snowballs Chance...

Dev-Hell Central:

Sam Elliot has joined the cast of Off the Map, an indie feature directed by Campbell Scott. Joan Allen, J.K. Simmons and 11-year-old Valentina deAngelis co-star in this coming-of-age tale about an 11-year-old girl who sees her father come down with a crippling depression. The girl learns answers to several mysteries and comes to terms with love and loss. Then she marries the handsome prince...

The Boston Globe picked up a rumor that Tom Cruise is being approached to play Dirk Pitt in the adaption of Clive Cussler's novel, Sahara. Now, I like Tom Cruise for a lot of things, but not Dirk Pitt. For those of you who haven't read the novels, Pitt is a large, outdoorsy type of guy. He's over six feet, rangy but very fit, with a tan, sea-faring look. (Fan's of the genre would realize that Pitt is very, very obviously Travis McGee meets James Bond.) Anyway, Tom just isn't a good choice physically for this part. On top of that, he already has a franchise in the same genre - he would be competing with himself! And Tom enjoys unprecedented control over his projects - something that Cussler has sworn not to give up. So rack this up as another fan-boy, wet-dream rumor...

While my opinion of rappers-turned-wannabe-film-stars is only slightly worse than Samuel Jackson's, there are a few exceptions to the rule. So I'm interested in seeing where Disney goes with De-Fense, starring (and written by) Ice Cube. It's a The Bad News Bears story set in the world of football, where a suspended NFL player is sentenced to coach a high school football team in his home town of Hell-A. Of course, he rediscovers his love of the sport (don't they all?)

Ballistic: Eks Vs. Sever Director Kaos (Wych Kaosayananda) has signed up to produce and direct Jack Hood, a story that is being described as similar to Raiders of the Lost Ark in both spirit and tone. (Of course, you can also say that about ten or twenty B-movies over the last twenty years.) Anyway, Kaos should be a shoe-in for director if anyone wants to film Get Smart...

Disney's The Alamo continues to get pretty 'severe' treatment in development hell. If you're trying to keep your scorecard up to date, here's the most recent spin: Howard and Crowe have no 'mind' for the project, John Hancock has 'signed' (har!) to direct, Ethan Hawke hasn't flown the coop yet, and the kick-off was dropped and rolled back to December. Considering the number of 'fouls' I wouldn't be surprised to see a mouse-eared referee bench the whole team...

Francis Ford Coppola may be moving ahead on his long-time dream project of filming the 1957 Jack Kerouac's novel Beat Generation under the title On the Road. Coppola has held the rights for years, but the novel has been considered unfilmable until recently. Joel Schumacher may be helming the project from a script by Russell Banks. Billy Crudup may play the lead character of Sal Paradise/Kerouac, with Brad Pitt linked to the second lead, Dean Moriarty. (Ask our own 'Kerouac' what he thinks in the Forum!)

Remake Hell:

The Hollywood Reporter reports that Columbia Pictures has picked up the English-language remake rights to the foreign language Oscar-nominated film Son of the Bride. The story involves a man who lives in the shadow of his father, feels guilty for not visiting his aging mother or spending time with his daughter, and cannot commit to his girlfriend. A minor heart attack reunites him with a childhood friend who helps him move forward. The project was picked up as a star vehicle for Adam Sandler. Wow! How often do you see a paragraph that includes the phrases 'Oscar-nominated' and 'Adam Sandler?'

Universal has picked up a pitch from Abdi Nazemian and Micah Schraft. False Advertising is based on Universal's 1961 film Lover Come Back, which starred Rock Hudson and Doris Day in a comedic story set in the high-stakes world of advertising. I don't know about the pitch, but you have to hand it to these guys for selling one of Universal's properties back to Universal!

Sequel Hell:

John Cleese has signed up for Charlie's Angels 2: Halo. Cleese will shoot for about a week, playing the father of Angel Lucy Liu. Apparently Liu is a huge fan and asked for Cleese personally, even though the scenes were originally written for her characters mother. Coming Soon also picked up another tidbit that is tailor made for our Forum members. Apparently Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, the oh-so-over-exposed Olsen twins, are set for a cameo. Also pegged for a cameo is original Angel Jaclyn Smith. And Demi Moore will play the villain! Can you believe Bill Murray walked away from this? Most guys don't have wet dreams this good...

Rich Wilkes discussed sequel ideas for xXx 2 in an article for the WGA, according to Dark Horizons. Apparently he is considering sending Vin Diesel to Japan, maybe to deal with the Yakuza. You know, everything Xander Cage does, Bond has already done. But even Michael Douglas has dealt with the Yakuza!

Rumors are running around that Brett Ratner may be up to replace McG on Superman 5, although it depends on his commitment to Paramount's Paycheck. How about Jackie Chan for Superman?

If you are attending UCLA, then be aware that Bring It On...Again is currently shooting on campus. If you're not careful, you might accidentally end up in the picture and destroy even the slightest chance of a film career...

TV and TV Adaption Hell:

Lee Zlotoff has closed a deal with New Line for a film adaption of his TV series creation, MacGyver. While MacGyver star Richard Dean Anderson's status is not known at this time, rumors indicate that he may have a cameo and the titular role will go to a younger actor. Wow! What a perfect way to alienate the existing fan-base! Maybe instead of all that confusing science junk, you can just have the guy do daring skateboard escapes!

Finally, CBS is planning to inflict a new reality show on you. The series will take a rural, lower-middle class family and move them into a luxurious Beverly Hills mansion, complete with maid and personal assistants. The participants will also be able to earn money each week as part of the contest in the tentatively titled Real Beverly Hillbillies.

Once upon a time there was a man named Jed,Got out a gun and shot hisself in the head... ~Lee


RIP: Peter R. Hunt passed away August 14th of heart failure at his Santa Monica home. Mr. Hunt was the editor of the first five James Bond films and directed the Bond film On Her Majesty's Secret Service. Hunt was well known in the industry for his creation of a novel editing style for the Bond films. Starting with Dr. No in 1962, the technique involved clipping dull footage to create faster pacing and increased suspense. 'Crash cutting,' as the style came to be known, is now a common technique in action films. We at Lights Out Entertainment extend our sincerest condolences to Mr. Hunt's family, friends and co-workers.

Cinemark Movie Club
Brian B.