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Radar Report: Hollywood Rumors, Gossip and Lawsuits Waiting to Happen
12/14/99
DHARMA DOESN'T HAVE VERY GOOD KARMA

From this moment on, Jenna Elfman shall be known as the Grinch who stole Christmas. During the last holiday season, the Dharma & Greg star refused to take part in a celebrity autograph auction for an organization that raised money for the care of children with HIV. As a brainwashed devotee of The Church of Scientology, the bah-humbugy Elfman stated that she couldn't support any organization that raised money for AIDS research or relief because "AIDS is a state of mind, not a disease." Get over it! They're babies, for Buddha's sake!! (or should we say "for Xenu's sake" -- in honor of her wacky alien leader/god?).

Ironically, Scientology megacelebs Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman and John Travolta all donated autographs for the same auction. One word of advice, Jenna: Watch out for the ghost of Christmas past.

THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT HEATHER

Edward Burns' shag-a-licious girlfriend Heather Graham (or is he Heather's boyfriend at this juncture in his career?) will star alongside Chris Klein in the new Farrelly brothers flick, tentatively entitled Say It Isn't So. Newcomer Klein won his costarring role with Roller Girl after becoming the new Gen Y-er star for his performances in American Pie and Election. The directing duo of Bobby & Peter Farrelly (There's Something About Mary, Kingpin and the forthcoming Me, Myself and Irene starring Jim Carrey) will try to gross us out once more with their twisted sense and sensibility. In not-so-typical storybook fashion, Heather & Chris' characters meet and fall in love only to find out later that they are brother and sister! Graham is to receive an estimated 2.5 mil for the production, which is slated to start in February.

NOTHING'S RUN OF THE MILL AT MOULIN ROUGE

Moulin Rouge, a musical/comedy directed by Baz Luhrmann of Romeo+Juliet and Strictly Ballroom fame, is slated for release in late summer/early fall 2000 by 20th Century Fox. Considering the Everybody's Free to Wear Sunscreen auteur's earlier work, Moulin Rouge is no exception to his off-kilter voice. Currently in production in the newly dedicated Fox Australia studios, Moulin Rouge is already operating with negative production days due to an injury Aussie native Nicole Kidman suffered during rehearsals. The story centers around Satin (Kidman), a can-can girl with a brain and a heart of gold (sounds a bit like Pretty Woman so far, huh?) and Ewan McGregor as Christian, an artistic and musical renaissance man. Christian gives advice with a 1960's perspective and new-age knowledge. No musical style or genre is sacred. In Luhrmann's musically visual style, he borrows liberally from such diverse musical sources as the Beatles, Queen, Violent Femmes -- and even The Sound of Music. Actor/Comedian John Leguizamo (a Baz favorite who played Tybalt in his 1996 production of R&J) is also featured in a portrayal of the infamous painter of the Moulin Rouge, Henri de Toulouse Lautrec.

Maybe you'll buy the concept, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll see it, maybe you wouldn't spend $8.50 if your life depended on it, but -- Trust me on the sunscreen.

WHILE YOU'RE UP ... Rose petals drifting in the air as a high school drill team dances to the psychedelic-flavored strains of The Who, prisoners in striped jail uniforms trudging along the stage to the rhythm of "Back In The Chain Gang", jolly little astronauts floating along to R.E.M. tunes -- these scenarios are now only pure fantasy. The powers-that-be have announced there will be NO DANCE NUMBERS during the upcoming 72nd anniversary presentation of the Academy Awards.

After his 23rd go-around as Executive Producer of the annual event, Michael B. Seligman, along with telecast producers Richard and Lili Fini Zanuck, has finally realized that the dance segments are either used as a time to go in the kitchen and fill up your beverage of choice and grab another plate of snacks  or for armchair comedians to brush up on their very obvious one-liners.

Regular Hollywood Squares guest star and two time Emmy-winner, Bruce Vilanch of Get Bruce indie-documentary fame is slated to be the head writer for the show and will have to fill up the hour and a half gap left by the elimination of these interpretive masterpieces.

Debbie Allen could not be reached for comment.

Just in case you want to make early party plans for this national holiday, the show will be broadcast live from the Los Angeles Shrine Auditorium on ABC, beginning at 5:30 p.m. PT, on Sunday, March 26, 2000. The usual lineup of pre-Oscar telecasts is planned, including E!'s preshow hosted by Joan "I've attached my name to a line of jewelry on QVC, but I still think what you're wearing is very tacky" Rivers and her daughter Melissa "I spent more money on my wedding than the annual budget of Ecuador" Rivers. The mother-daughter tag team is consistently the cable channel's highest-rated show of the entire year. Go figure.

BUT WHAT ABOUT JAMES EARL JONES? The cast reads like the Who's Who of the African-American musical and theatrical community: Lauren Hill, Queen Latifah, Usher, Delroy Lindo, Wesley Snipes, Don Cheadle, Ving Rhames and Whoopi Goldberg will all supply voices for the Fox Family Films animated feature which is now only known as "Untitled Africa Project". Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds will also be wearing many hats as composer, executive music producer and executive producer for the venture.

The scope of this project is huge. Think Fantasia. Think Little Mermaid. Think The Lion King. In fact, like its Lion King predecessor, there are already tentative plans to develop the current script into a Broadway Musical.

Reportedly, Samuel L. "I don't ever want to work with anymore mutha-****ing CGI again" Jackson and Will "I'm no longer the 4th of July box office king" Smith are both passing on the project because of previous commitments. WILL'S HERE, HE'S QUEER -- GET USED TO IT! The cast of NBC's hit show Will & Grace has joined forces with one of the co-creators/co-producers, the openly gay Max Mutchnick, by appearing in a public service announcement that he wrote and produced. Eric McCormack, Debra Messing, Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally - aka Will, Grace, Jack and Karen - all speak out against California's statewide ballot measure to limit marriage rights to heterosexuals. Additionally, Proposition 22, also known as the Knight initiative, will prohibit the state from recognizing same gender marriages that have been performed in another "more liberal" state. (And who knew there was any place more liberal than California?)

The announcement is scheduled to air on television as early as January, but it is available for preview at noonknight.org. NBC is taking a yellowbellied/noncommittal stand, stating that the views stated in the PSA do not necessarily represent the views of the network. WHILE YOU'RE UP ... Rose petals drifting in the air as a high school drill team dances to the psychedelic-flavored strains of The Who, prisoners in striped jail uniforms trudging along the stage to the rhythm of "Back In The Chain Gang", jolly little astronauts floating along to R.E.M. tunes -- these scenarios are now only pure fantasy. The powers-that-be have announced there will be NO DANCE NUMBERS during the upcoming 72nd anniversary presentation of the Academy Awards.

After his 23rd go-around as Executive Producer of the annual event, Michael B. Seligman, along with telecast producers Richard and Lili Fini Zanuck, has finally realized that the dance segments are either used as a time to go in the kitchen and fill up your beverage of choice and grab another plate of snacks  or for armchair comedians to brush up on their very obvious one-liners.

Regular Hollywood Squares guest star and two time Emmy-winner, Bruce Vilanch of Get Bruce indie-documentary fame is slated to be the head writer for the show and will have to fill up the hour and a half gap left by the elimination of these interpretive masterpieces.

Debbie Allen could not be reached for comment.

Just in case you want to make early party plans for this national holiday, the show will be broadcast live from the Los Angeles Shrine Auditorium on ABC, beginning at 5:30 p.m. PT, on Sunday, March 26, 2000. The usual lineup of pre-Oscar telecasts is planned, including E!'s preshow hosted by Joan "I've attached my name to a line of jewelry on QVC, but I still think what you're wearing is very tacky" Rivers and her daughter Melissa "I spent more money on my wedding than the annual budget of Ecuador" Rivers. The mother-daughter tag team is consistently the cable channel's highest-rated show of the entire year. Go figure.

BUT WHAT ABOUT JAMES EARL JONES? The cast reads like the Who's Who of the African-American musical and theatrical community: Lauren Hill, Queen Latifah, Usher, Delroy Lindo, Wesley Snipes, Don Cheadle, Ving Rhames and Whoopi Goldberg will all supply voices for the Fox Family Films animated feature which is now only known as "Untitled Africa Project". Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds will also be wearing many hats as composer, executive music producer and executive producer for the venture.

The scope of this project is huge. Think Fantasia. Think Little Mermaid. Think The Lion King. In fact, like its Lion King predecessor, there are already tentative plans to develop the current script into a Broadway Musical.

Reportedly, Samuel L. "I don't ever want to work with anymore mutha-****ing CGI again" Jackson and Will "I'm no longer the 4th of July box office king" Smith are both passing on the project because of previous commitments. WILL'S HERE, HE'S QUEER -- GET USED TO IT! The cast of NBC's hit show Will & Grace has joined forces with one of the co-creators/co-producers, the openly gay Max Mutchnick, by appearing in a public service announcement that he wrote and produced. Eric McCormack, Debra Messing, Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally - aka Will, Grace, Jack and Karen - all speak out against California's statewide ballot measure to limit marriage rights to heterosexuals. Additionally, Proposition 22, also known as the Knight initiative, will prohibit the state from recognizing same gender marriages that have been performed in another "more liberal" state. (And who knew there was any place more liberal than California?)

The announcement is scheduled to air on television as early as January, but it is available for preview at noonknight.org. NBC is taking a yellowbellied/noncommittal stand, stating that the views stated in the PSA do not necessarily represent the views of the network.

- Showbiz Radar



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