Thursday, October 2, 2008

Quick clips for Thursday October 2

Would you believe DeNiro and Scorsese were making a musical about bee pollen?

No? Okay, what about the announcement from Variety that the two will team up, one more time with feeling, to make...wait for it...a mob movie?! Gasp! The next thing you know, I'll be telling you that Johnny Depp and Tim Burton may team up, or that the Cubs blew game one of the NLDS by giving up a GRAND FREAKING SLAM AT HOME, or that I'm having a very hard time these days...all of which are equally as unexpected. The movie will be based on the book "I Heard You Paint Houses" (a title that will likely be shortened to fit on marquees to something like House Paint or I Heard You both of which sound like movies about a grandpa with a broken hip trying to do housework). The subject is the mob assassin who many believe offed Jimmy Hoffa and DeNiro will play Frank "The Irishman" Sheeran who supposedly carried out more than 25 murders. This makes me think about what my mob hitman name would be. I don't have any pronounced body parts (that sounds bad) and I'm pretty nondescript. I guess Ryan "The Pollack" Syrek would work or they could go more philosophical and call me "Words." At any rate, the real question is can Scorsese get Jack Nicholson to reprise his role as Hoffa (he won't even ask, I just thought that up) and what role Joe Pesci will play (if DeNiro is like Batman...then Joe Pesci is still untalented).

You know a good time for rich actors to ask for more money? Right now.

Here we go again. That long sigh you just heard was from both the Screen Actors Guild (abbreviated SAG) members and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (abbreviated ASSES...wait, that's not right). See, after a long staring contest in which neither side blinked, the SAG is trying to shake things up by voting to authorize a strike. Ugh. Actors have been working under the old deal even though it expired June 30 but are now scheduled to meet on October 18 to approve the call for a strike vote. Now, hopefully this is just a tactic (and not a strategy, which is apparently a difficult distinction for some elderly citizens) designed to get negotiations going but, if it isn't, wow is this stupid. Here's why: The actors were always going to have a tougher road to hoe with the public support than the writers because we all envision even the lowliest of on-screen talent (meaning the guy who gets his junk rocked in a commercial for an energy drink or whatnot) to be well compensated and famous (even if they aren't). Sure, nobody sides with the producers but, talk about the wrong time for people who are seen as rich to stop working, it's probably right when congress is voting to give 1.8 googojillion dollars (I'm fairly sure that's right and is the equivalent of 47,000 twinkies per person for the next 30 years) to solve a financial crisis. This is just a bonehead move. IF you're going to strike, wait until some kind of resolution to the current really bad crisis. Wait until just after the presidential election...WAIT UNTIL THE NEW SEASON OF LOST IS FILMED for the love. We'll see if this turns into another debacle but, Lord knows, with actors on one side and producers on the other, we're in for some serious stupidity.

A post in which I refrain from making a joke about political Panda-ring

Dreamworks has announced that Jack Black will once again teach your children that violence is cool (so long as they are talking animals) with a sequel to Kung Fu Panda that will hit on June 3, 2011 (if the stock market hasn't taken us all to our early grave before then). Funniest moment of the press release, when Bill Damaschke from Dreamworks said "Quite simply, there's more story to tell." Come the eff on there Bill, the "rest of the story" isn't some Paul Harvey-like revelation, it's that the movie made more than $600 million worldwide and kids are still gobbling up their panda merchandise. "More story to tell," that's hysterical. Anyway, the cool thing is that this may signify a move within Dreamworks animation past Shrek craziness. Now that they have two money suckers, they can take a bit of a chance on some more unique animation like, oh say, Pixar does. They now have the latitude to make something that may not be a cash pinata and I hope they do. If they can begin to put forth films that don't talk down to kids and adults, maybe they'll have a future as a real studio and not just the purveyors of Shrek, which sounds like a euphemism for excrement no matter how you hear it.
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