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Short Takes – May 2006


by Clint Fletcher


Television
The producers of ER have finally lost their minds. After years of making terrible casting decisions, this one takes the cake. John Stamos, who did a brief stint as a boring paramedic on the show, will be joining the cast as a regular next season. So let me get this straight. Stamos appears for two episodes and no one notices. But John Leguizamo has appeared in numerous episodes all season, boosting the ratings and bringing ER out of its tired coma. According to reports, Leguizamo would love to join as a regular. So the producers say no to him and yes to fucking Uncle Jesse? No wonder everyone watches Grey’s Anatomy now.

The WB’s 7th Heaven has their series finale episode this week which shows the Camdens joining a church of devil worshipers. What a way to go, guys. Speaking of the Camdens, actor Barry Watson’s new ABC show What About Brian? is getting picked up for a season 2 due to fair ratings. But after it gets canceled next fall (I’m sure it will), what will Barry do then since there’s no 7th Heaven to fall back on? Boogeyman 2?

Two main characters were shot and killed on Lost Wednesday night. Coincidentally, these are the same two actresses that got arrested for drunk driving a couple months back—Cynthia Watros and notorious drunken bitch Michelle Rodriguez. Could it be possible that ABC is sending a message? Could ABC possibly stand for Alcoholic Beverage Commission? Speaking of alcoholics, Kiefer Sutherland just signed a deal upwards of $40 million to appear in the next three seasons of 24. This new deal not only gives Sutherland his own production company at Fox to produce new pilots, but it also makes him the highest paid actor in dramatic television today.

Besides the Lost stars, those damn dirty Italians are at it again. Actors John Ventimiglia and Louis Gross were arrested earlier this week for separate reasons—Ventimiglia for drug possession and Gross for attempted robbery. It’s official: every star of The Sopranos has now been arrested. Now onto our juicy rumor mill. Joey star Matt LeBlanc officially filed for divorce a few weeks ago from his supermodel wife of two years. Officially, it was noted that the break-up was due to stress of a brain condition his daughter has, and his show not being funny. Unofficially, people have been spotting him smooching with actress and Joey co-star Andrea Anders (Alex). Sounds like Matt could use some “friends” right about now.

Music
Nick Lachey is a singer? Oh yeah, I forgot. I guess after mooching off your wife for five years you forget the dude actually had a job once. This will be brought up again and more extensively in the movie section, but I’m getting really sick and tired of these douchebag stars spouting off at the mouth as if we care about their lives. Ever since Nick’s album got released at the beginning of the month, I can’t go a week without him releasing some sort of statement saying “my heart is broken, but my music isn’t about Jessica” or “I hope to find true love again and I promise I’m not gay.” Dude, how about committing suicide like the rest of 98 Degrees because we’re fresh out of “give a shit” passes here?

On a happier note, I got to meet Kiefer Sutherland in person this past weekend. Why am I mentioning this in the music section, you may ask? Sutherland was recently in Nashville promoting a documentary about the band he manages called Rocco Deluca and the Burden. This band kicks ass and anyone who enjoys rock should check out their brand new album, I Trust You to Kill Me. On a personal note, Kiefer is a really cool dude in person. Very polite and well mannered. I wish his band the best of luck.

Canadian singer Celine Dion has returned to performing in Las Vegas, Nevada, after suffering from labyrinthitis—an inflammation of the inner ear which causes dizziness, loss of balance and a nails-on-a-chalkboard voice. She is said to be doing well with her grandfather husband, bitchy attitude and big-nosed face. Her contract is up in 2007 and she will then be replaced by an even uglier Cher. In other news, I want everyone to know that I try desperately hard to take a month off of reporting news about Britney Spears. But by God, she keeps getting knocked up. It was announced yesterday that Spears will be having a little girl. It was also announced that the little girl will have a deadbeat douchebag for a father. Shocking news, indeed.

Movies
The following is a list of people who need to shut the holy fuck up this month about their problems because NO ONE CARES. Here we go… Denise Richards, Macaulay Culkin, Nick Lachey, Heather Locklear, Paris Hilton, P Diddy, Kevin Federline, Ryan Seacrest, Teri Hatcher and every other cast member of Desperate Housewives. If your name is on the list, you’ve been talking too much this past month and frankly, no one gives a rat’s ass. You’re speaking to dead ears because you’re not talented enough for us to listen. Stop talking and try to sound intelligent through silence.

Perhaps the news that’s been getting more coverage than anything else is the birth of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes’s baby—Suri. Cruise has been out promoting M:I:3 lately and so far he’s behaved himself. This is probably due to the fact that he fired his Scientologist sister as his publicist. Even Cruise himself realized he needed to be less crazy and more restrained. Meanwhile M:I:3 is getting great reviews while United 93 bombed big time. Only in America does a movie called RV starring Robin Williams make more money than a film about the biggest terrorist attack in history. I guess people just weren’t ready for a 9/11 movie, and I doubt they’ll be ready for the big-budget World Trade Center this summer either. May certainly hasn’t brought a hit at the box office, as Ice Age 2 is still the only film to pass the $100 million mark so far this year. Things are heating up, though, with M:I:3, The Da Vinci Code, Poseidon and X3 on the way.

In future movie news, a prequel to Halloween has been greenlit. This script will follow the story of Michael Myers as a young man before he got sent to the looney bin. It will more than likely star Jamie Lee Curtis and they will use CGI to make her look 50 years younger. Just a hunch. Comic book fans, rejoice. An Iron Man movie is definitely on the way. A script review is out on the internet and received decent markings at best. And Fox seems like they’re coming to their senses with this latest idea. Instead of green-lighting a Silver Surfer movie, they are now thinking of integrating that character in to Fantastic Four 2. This is a great idea, because I ask you—does anyone really care about the Silver Surfer stand-alone comics? I mean, he kicked ass when he did crossovers, but by himself it was just boring. Plus, FF2 could use a good villain after the dreadful Dr. Doom was ruined by cheesy acting and a Power Rangers-looking costume. Now if only they could replace the actor playing Mr. Fantastic himself…

Until next time, kids.

Most information is derived from IMDB's daily news, the Chicago dailies (Tribune and Sun Times), Entertainment Weekly, MSN.com, various sources as listed, and by just paying attention.

Clint Fletcher is a writer and filmmaker living in the Midwest.



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