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Mel Gibson: Friend to the booze, not so much the Jews

Word to the wise: If you’re a major Hollywood star and recovering alcoholic who has just been pulled over and tagged with a DUI, it’s probably not a good idea to resist arrest. It’s probably an even worse idea to go on an expletive-fueled rant that includes blaming the Jews for every war since the dawn of time (pretty sure they weren’t involved in that Hundred Years’ War thing, for starters…).

Especially if you have already been roundly criticized for anti-Semitism. And super-double-extra-specially if you had been planning to make a miniseries about the Holocaust one of your next projects. We’re just sayin’.

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Maura Tierney splits from her husband of 13 years

Based on the above photo, which aspect of the former “NewsRadio” star’s breakup is most surprising?

a) That Maura was ever married to this guy in the first place;
b) That it took 13 years for her to realize she could do better, despite romancing Goran Visnjic (aka “Vladimir Yummy”) on “E.R.”; or
c) That Maura is not already making up for lost time with some hot young twentysomething…like, say, Jesse Metcalfe?

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Box Office Roundup: South Flori-duh

Based on Sunday’s estimates, courtesy of boxofficemojo.com:

1) Miami Vice: $25.2 million (first week)
Universal’s marketing strategy to push the movie in its second week: “See ‘Miami Vice,’ or this sack full of kittens will drown.”
2) Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest: $20.5 million ($358.4 million, fourth week)
Just when I was complaining about how bad “Pirates” was, I must offer this admission: it’s better than “Miami Vice.”
3) John Tucker Must Die: $14.1 million (first week)
A thousand lashes to the movie’s music supervisor, for not using Wilco’s “I Am Trying to Break Your Heart.”
4) Monster House: $11.5 million ($43.9 million, second week)
Next time we see a kite near the front door of a house, we’re running for the hills.
5) The Ant Bully: $8.1 million (first week)
It’s official: the studios went to the animation well way, way too much this year. Worse, we still have to suffer through “Barnyard: The Original Party Animals,” which will make your kids so dumb they’ll forget their own name when it’s over.

7) Lady in the Water: $7 million ($32 million, second week)
Before we start pouring gas onto the festering pile of waste that is M. Night Shyamalan’s reputation, keep in mind that this movie will ultimately make its money back. The problem, of course, is that the studio was expecting it to print money, not break even. Here’s an idea: hire him as a director, but use someone else’s script.

Another reminder: the movie to see when Talladega Nights is sold out is “The Descent,” a super-creepy gorefest involving a group of rock climbing girls with bad, bad luck. Think “Aliens” crossed with “The Hills Have Eyes.”

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They tear you down to build you back up

The previews for the new season of “Entourage” showed Vince and E on a rollercoaster, at the top of the very first hill, arms up and eyes wide, ready for the plunge. At the time, I’d hoped this was symbolic of what we should expect from the show this summer. After the first several episodes, it seemed I was out of luck: “Aquaman” broke records, Vince was hotter than Jessica Alba in a wet t-shirt contest, and Ari’s sputtering agency was finally gaining footing. Even E, Turtle and Drama were livin’ large, what with E scoring a threesome with his hot girlfriend and her hotter girlfriend, and Ari taking Turtle and Drama on as clients. Everything seemed hunky dory.

Well, all is not hunky dory after tonight’s episode. For starters, Ari, who’s planning on using the $11 million settlement he got from Terence to form the biggest agency in town, gets ambushed at a lunch date with Barbara Miller by all of the industry’s big wigs. Apparently, they know what Ari’s planning and, intent on keeping Ari away from their agents and their talent, they tell him they’ll do everything in their power to kill his venture. When Ari assures them that the only person he plans to steal agents and/or clients from is Terence, Terence says that, while he may have signed the settlement agreement, he hasn’t signed any checks yet, and he’ll gladly pay $50 million to make sure Ari doesn’t get a dime of the settlement.

I’m not really sure where Terence has a leg to stand on – if he signed the papers, how can he refuse to pay Ari? I’m assuming the $50 million was in reference to taking things to court but, again, Terence signed. What’s the problem? I’m no lawyer, so maybe I’m missing something here, but it seems Ari didn’t really have anything to worry about. Of course, that didn’t stop him from reluctantly agreeing to take Barbara on as a partner, since Ari is now flat broke and can’t afford to pay his agents. Either way, the new agency is up and running, only now Ari’s got someone to answer to. That spells trouble, I’m sure.

But the big story tonight came when Ari told E and Vince that “Queens Boulevard” was going to be released wide to 12,000 screens, with an announcement set to be made later that afternoon in front of the Hollywood Foreign Press. Just the kind of pub Vinnie needs in the aftermath of the “A2” debacle. But when E calls director Billy Walsh to tell him the good news, Walsh says he already knows about the plans and that he’s filing an injunction because he doesn’t want “those douche bags to ‘Aquamanifi’ my movie.” What’s he so worked up about? In preparation of the wide release, the studio has elected to colorize “Queens,” and it’s an awful colorization job at that (E says it looks like Willie Wonka, and he’s not far off). Walsh wants Vince to sign the injunction so the studio knows they mean business but E can’t get Ari on the phone to run the idea past him. Which means when Ari shows up, with new partner Babs in tow, he’s completely stunned when Vince tells everyone at the press conference that the studio “ripped out” Queens’ soul, “because, like all studios in this town, they don’t give a shit about art; they only care about one thing: money.”

Hard times lie ahead for Vince, and not just because he got booted off “A2,” and not because he just pissed off another set of studio execs, but because he insulted every studio in Hollywood with his speech. But, hell, who cares? Seems the writers had every intention of taking that plunge hinted at in the season previews, and I’m loving the ride. How far will all of this go? What kind of role is Vince going to be able to get now? If my initial hunch was right (and at this point, it doesn’t seem very likely), “Medellin” may still be an option, but even if Ari was telling the truth about Paul Haggis going in another direction, that seems like exactly the kind of role Vince should be going after now. Fuck the big studios, fuck the suits. It’s obvious Vinnie has an appreciation for film that goes far beyond the green it sends back his way, and this may be his opportunity to take on some independent roles rather than chasing the buck. Granted, that’ll mean a change of lifestyle for the boys back home, and likely some hard times for Ari and his new agency, but it could also lead to some award-show hardware down the road.

A couple final notes from tonight’s episode: Looks like Drama’s getting a pretty big break — despite another public temper tantrum — with “Eddie” Burns offering him a role in his new pilot. I wonder if this means Ari will pay Lloyd his promised 10,000 Yen…. And speaking of Ari: “Fuck the phones, Lloyd. Unless Carmen Electra calls for an emergency titty fuck, don’t answer.” That’s this week’s Ari Moment, which came after his ambush lunch when he was trying to set up a meeting with his agents and Lloyd told him that Eric and Vince had called several times. I imagine if Carmen Electra ever called for an emergency titty fuck, just about anything you were working on instantly would become less of a priority.

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Hallelujah! PREACH IT, Brother Jimmy!

James Robinson, CEO of Morgan Creek Productions, is mad as hell at Lindsay Lohan…and he’s not going to take it any more! Not only did he write a letter, chastising her unprofessional behavior, he didn’t bother sending it to any stinkin’ intermediary; it went straight to Lohan herself!

You can check out the letter here, but this line alone should tell you that he’s laying it all out on the table:

“You and your representatives have told us that your various late arrivals and absences from the set have been the result of illness; today, we were told it was ‘heat exhaustion.’ We are well aware that your ongoing all night heavy partying is the real reason for your so called ‘exhaustion.’ We refuse to accept bogus excuses for your behavior.”

BUSTED!!!!!!!

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