NO PEOPLE LIKE SHOW PEOPLE: British-born screen siren Jacqueline Bisset, who mastered an American accent to become a Hollywood star,
apparently employs a killer Italian accent to play an over-the-hill actress in director Linda Yellen’s reportedly wicked satire The Last Film Festival. The beauteous Ms Bisset plays one of a group of misbegotten, narcissistic actors attending a third-rate movie festival in middle America. Also along for the free booze and tacky gift bags: Dennis Hopper, JoBeth Williams, Chris Kattan and LeeLee Sobieski … and Chris Pine, so good as the young Captain Kirk in this year’s Star Trek prequel,
will go from co-starring with Denzel Washington in Ridley Scott’s Unstoppable to playing notorious counterfeiter Art Williams in The Art of Making Money. And while he’s shooting that one, Paramount Pictures will be negotiating with him to follow in the footsteps of Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford and Ben Affleck and play CIA analyst Jack Ryan in a new series of thrillers based on Tom Clancy novels. Don’t know ‘bout you, but I’d say he’s definitely doing something right.
IF YOU CAN’T SAY SOMETHING NICE, SIT BY ME: My Manhattan hero, gossip girl Liz Smith, constantly rises to the defense of such loose cannons as Whitney Houston and Lindsay
Lohan in her on-line column at wowOwow.com. Given a chance, Liz will always take the high road; she’d far rather praise showbiz Caesars than bury them. But after the Jon & Kate Gosselin debacle escalated last week, she could no longer contain herself. “In the years that the show Jon & Kate Plus 8 has been inflicted on America,” she writes, “Kate has revealed herself as a steely-eyed control freak with high ambitions for a life outside of her home – she wants to be a star, a talk-show hostess. Jon, her hubby, is an overweight, dim, resentful sad sack with a spine of jelly. He’s the type who could turn any woman into a shrew. He has ambitions too. He wants to party with ladies who haven’t given birth to eight children and who don’t correct him every five minutes.” Who’s to blame? Liz lays some of that guilt on “the once-respectable Learning Channel (who) put these deadbeats on the air.”
Who’s worse? In Liz’s view, the Gosselins come a close second to Lindsay Lohan’s parents, Dina & Michael Lohan. “What a pair!” she sighs. “Daddy Michael was in trouble with the law for a long time – stock fraud, for which he was jailed four years, probation violation (more jail), violating a court order to stay away from his children (and still more jail time!). He is afflicted with terminal verbal diarrhea, and can’t-stay-away-from-the-camera-itis. Almost always he is talking about his famous daughter.” Lindsay’s mother Dina, she says, “is a ferociously taut, blonde Mama Rose, who saw a moneymaking ‘Gypsy’ in the talented Lindsay. She has lived and partied vicariously through – and sometimes
with – her daughter, existing in a heightened state of denial.” Says Liz: “How cruelly ironic that Lindsay came to fame in a movie titled The Parent Trap.” And then tops herself by adding what she calls a “Totally Predictable P.S.– Michael Lohan and Jon Gosselin are new best friends.”
BACK ON BROADWAY: It was one of the greatest opening nights of the ’90s — first in Toronto, and then in New York Thirteen tumultuous years later, previews of the retooled revival of Ragtime, a new production that won cheers when it premiered at the Kennedy Centre in Washington, start tonight at the Neil Simon Theatre. The opulent period piece, set to open on Broadway Nov. 15, is already causing mucho buzz in the theatre district. For one thing, it’s been quite a while since recession-struck New Yorkers saw a dramatic musical with a cast of 40 backed by a 28-piece orchestra. For another, the man who started it all, Garth Drabinsky, the driving force behind its creation, won’t be there to herald its return. It was seven years ago yesterday when Drabinsky was arrested and charged with fraud, and the real-life drama in which he’s currently starring makes it impossible for him to go to New York without risking arrest and imprisonment. But the show must go on. And it will — without Garth.
MAPLE LEAF JOKES? WE’VE GOT A MILLION OF ‘EM!:
Q: What do you call 30 millionaires around a TV watching the Stanley Cup Playoffs?
A. The Toronto Maple Leafs.
Have a great weekend!