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  WINDY CITY TIMES

Deep Inside Hollywood
by Romeo San Vicente
2003-03-12

This article shared 1931 times since Wed Mar 12, 2003
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Richard Gere's Up for Prison

Golden Globe-winner Richard Gere was conspicuously absent from this year's list of Oscar nominees for his role as slick lawyer Billy Flynn in Chicago. But now rumor has it the actor may be looking at yet another prison musical. Chicago songwriters John Kander and Fred Ebb are hoping to get their musical version of Kiss of the Spider Woman to the big screen, and the duo have their sights on Gere to portray Molina, a gay man behind bars in a South American jail. In the moving story, Molina befriends—then falls in love with —his cell mate, a political prisoner named Valentin. Ebb recently told the press he'd love for Gere to star because 'I'm crazy about him. He's my new favorite actor.' William Hurt won Best Actor for playing Molina in the 1986 nonmusical version of the film, which was adapted from gay novelist Manuel Puig's novel.

Diesel-Powered Dolls?

Miramax has secured the movie rights to the musical comedy Guys & Dolls, as well as to the collection of short stories by Damon Runyon on which it is based. Rumor has it that XXX hunk Vin Diesel is itchin' to burst into song as Nathan Detroit, who was played by the considerably less brawny Frank Sinatra in the 1955 movie. The plot centers on New York City gambler Detroit's bet with fellow craps junkie Sky Masterson that he can't get the next 'doll' he sees—who turns out to be a Salvation Army missionary—to fall in love with him. The queer producing team of Craig Zadan and Neil Meron (Chicago, TV's The Music Man) is in place.

Mr. Holland's New Opus

Emmy Award-winning homo director Todd Holland, who helped create Malcolm in the Middle, is back in business with the Fox Network—but this time he's going mystical. Holland, who has also directed episodes of Felicity, Relativity, and last year's David E. Kelley bomb, Girls Club, is shooting an as-yet-untitled pilot about a slightly unbalanced woman (Canadian hottie Caroline Dhavernas) who hears voices from the inanimate objects in her Niagara Falls gift shop and uses the information she gets from them to improve the lives of others.

Gee! Men Singing!

Harry Shearer, the voice of Smithers on The Simpsons—and of Mr. Burns, the object of Smithers' affection—has dusted off an old project about one of America's favorite closet cases. At this year's Aspen Comedy Festival, Shearer and co-writer Tom Leopold brought in a packed house for a staged reading of their comedy J. Edgar! The Musical, featuring Kelsey Grammer, John Goodman, and Michael McKean. The play explores the affair between legendary FBI director J. Edgar Hoover and his longtime 'assistant,' Clyde Tolson. J. Edgar! was first performed on L.A. public radio about 10 years ago, but with the success of campy Broadway hits like The Producers and Hairspray, Shearer decided to revisit it.


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