Wednesday night movie news dump

Yes, this week you get you’re Friday night movie news dump two days early…and extra quick/short, if I can manage it. Let’s see…

* Roman Polanski, who has been in jail for two months since he found himself accepting one too many award invites in Switzerland, has been granted bail to the tune of about 3 million Euros and it appears there will be no appeal of that particular decision. He’ll be under house arrest and constantly monitored, however. There is no need for panic at this time.

* Dirk Benedict apparently had some politically/sexually driven issues with the re-imagining of “Battlestar Galactica.” As per Wikipedia, the macrobiotic follower said:

One thing is certain. In the new un-imagined, re-imagined world of Battlestar Galactica everything is female driven. The male characters, from Adama on down, are confused, weak, and wracked with indecision while the female characters are decisive, bold, angry as hell, puffing cigars (gasp) and not about to take it any more.

He says that like it’s a bad thing. Anyhow, he’s apparently fine with Joe Carnahan’s new film version of “The A-Team” and will be joining the cast. Yay.

* Speaking of stars with possibly very rightwing political views, is UN representative Angelina Jolie, who admittedly has enjoyed a hair more success than Dirk Benedict, really saying things about President Obama that wouldn’t sound odd coming out of the mouth of her possibly no longer estranged movement conservative father, Jon VoightUS Magazine reports, I can’t possibly decide if any of this has one whit of truth to it.

*/film has some early critical buzz on Disney’s “The Princess and the Frog.” Mostly fairly positive. Good, maybe 2-D animation won’t die after all.

* An assignment for the long weekend, cinegeeks. Are you ready for Professor Russell Johnson’s “My Ancestors Came over on the Minnow” Thanksgiving/Christmas Movie Quiz”? T.A. Dennis Cozzalio awaits your response.

* Sometimes my usual sources for the box office previews I do, like the one just below this post, don’t catch all the new opening movies. For example, the reported return-to-form for Hong Kong master director John Woo, “Red Cliff,” is opening in 15 theaters this weekend. Anne Thompson has the fascinating details on the latest from one of the greatest action directors of all time. With the exception of 1997’s “Face/Off,” his Hollywood career hasn’t quite gone exactly as hoped, but take a look at this trailer.

Yep. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

  

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The Scream Awards go down the rabbit hole (updated)

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There was a time in this world when young people were frequently slightly ashamed of being bigger than average fans of horror, science fiction, fantasy, and especially comic books. I, personally, wasn’t embarrassed …and I paid a price. Those days may be over. In any case, the capacity crowd that showed up for Spike TV’s Scream awards, largely in costume and largely dramatically over- or under-dressed for a nighttime outdoor show after a very warm day, seemed more like club kids and less like the kind of uber geeks who become entertainment bloggers and film critics and stuff like that.

The Scream Awards are, in their fun/silly way, a big deal. Big enough to attract a good number of stars and even a few superstars like Tobey Maguire, Jessica Alba, Morgan Freeman, Harrison Ford, Johnny Depp and his living legend “Pirates of the Caribbean” muse, Rolling Stone Keith Richard.

I, however, am not such a big deal and was reminded of that fact when, prior to the show I found myself with the less fashionable members of the not-quite paparazzi on the “red carpet” (actually a checkered walkway) with my little digital camera and even smaller digital recorder device, wondering whether I’d really get a chance to ask a question of one of the super-famed folks, knowing that the only question I could think of at the time would be something in the nature of “What’s it like be the most notorious rock and roll star in the world, having your blood changed, and snorting your late father’s ashes?” That probably would have been inappropriate, especially if I asked it of Jessica Alba.

What actually seems to happen at events like this is that, if you’re a small-timer especially, most of the big stars either go through another entrance or walk right by you at warp speed. Meanwhile, folks who are a bit more anxious to meet the press find their way to you with the help of PR types. As an example, for about half a second, I was almost able to talk with actor Karl Urban, who did such a great job homaging DeForest Kelly while putting his own hilarious stamp on “Bones” McCoy in “Star Trek.” However, within a nanosecond he remembered he was in a big hurry and politely scurried off.

After a few odd reality show people I didn’t recognize, and the pretty young actress who assays the part of “Female Addict” in “Saw VI,” our first actual notable was statuesque model turned actress Tricia Helfer. Helfer is, make no mistake, a true superstar to TV sci-fi fans and is best known as Number Six, aka “the hot blonde cylon” on “Battlestar Galactica.” The actress appeared with her significant other, the owner of a British accent and a Giaus Baltar-style beard, but I’m sure that’s a total coincidence. I had a not terribly consequential discussion with her — lost because I apparently forgot to press the “on” button on my digital recorder. One would expect no less an effect from Number Six. UPDATE: Yeesh! As pointed out by my PH compatriot John Paulsen, the actress was actually Kate Vernon, who played the lady-MacBeth-like Ellen Tigh. It is true, all statueseque blonde women in shiny dresses look alike to me! My apologies to all concerned or unconcerned.

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