Gov. Gretchen Whitmer addressed the State of Michigan after a plan to kidnap her and other Michigan government officials was thwarted by state and federal law enforcement agencies. She started by saying thank you to law enforcement and FBI agents who participated in stopping this [...]
By Romeo San Vicente
The ‘Confessions’ of Joseph Lawrence
Sorry, but you can’t call him “Joey” anymore. The former “Blossom” teen and one-hit pop star is an adult now, and he wants to be known as Joseph Lawrence. Romeo is fine with this because Lawrence grew up hot and is playing gay in his next project, the TV movie “Confessions of a Sociopathic Social Climber”. Based on the book by Adele Lang, “Confessions” is a post-Bridget Jones comedy about the misadventures of young, single, conniving ad executive (Jennifer Love Hewitt), who uses trickery to get ahead in business and in her upscale social world. Lawrence co-stars as her gay partner-in-climb. Romeo will be watching intently – and not just in the hopes of seeing Lawrence shirtless – to make certain that the script doesn’t call for them to magically fall in love at the end. The movie airs on Oxygen in March.
’54’ director delivers ‘Pizza’
Back in the ’90s, after a moving, buzz-creating short film called “Alkali, Iowa”, it seemed like young gay filmmaker Mark Christopher had a bright future ahead of him. And then came Christopher’s feature debut, a little cinematic disaster called “54” – aka the larger-than-life bomb about Steve Rubell and his frenziedly famous disco. Romeo despaired that this talented director would be sidelined indefinitely after that. But Christopher is back with a sweetly engaging comedy called “Pizza”. Starring Ethan Embry (“Sweet Home Alabama”) as a too-smart, 30-something pizzeria employee and newcomer Kylie Sparks as the unhappy 17-year-old social outcast he befriends during a night of door-to-door deliveries, the movie serves up plenty of personal, oddly poignant charm. Currently making the film-festival rounds, “Pizza” may prove hot enough to get the wider distribution it deserves.
The ‘Prom Queen’ and his ‘Kids’
Queer couples might be able to marry in Canada now, but it wasn’t so long ago that our northern neighbors were still fighting for their rights to go to high school dances together. Enter Marc Hall, a Canadian teen who successfully sued for the right to take his boyfriend to the prom, and who became the subject of a TV movie called “Prom Queen”. Aired in Canada last year, the movie stars Aaron Ashmore (“Veronica Mars” ) – twin brother of “X-Men”‘s Shawn Ashmore – as the brave, small-town teenager. It also features former “Kids in the Hall” stars Dave Foley and Scott Thompson as the school principal and Hall’s lawyer, respectively. Stateside viewers will have the chance to see the movie at regional film festivals this year – and maybe in wider theatrical release if a distributor signs its dance card.
Taking a turn at ‘Tristram’
Ever tried to read Laurence Sterne’s 18th-century classic, “The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman”? Ever failed trying? You’re not alone. It was a groundbreaking experimental novel that threw conventional narrative out the window for more than 700 pages. And now the unfilmable book will become a movie – about how unfilmable a book it is. Follow along, if you can. Director Michael Winterbottom is helming. The movie stars Jeremy Northam “as” Winterbottom trying to make a movie called “Tristram Shandy”. Lesbian icon Gillian Anderson (“The X-Files”), Steve Coogan, and Stephen Fry will all play themselves taking roles in the movie-within-a-movie. In other words, it all sounds too clever by half and as potentially confusing as its source material, but if anyone can pull it off, it’s Winterbottom. His “24 Hour Party People” also playfully broke a lot of storytelling rules. Look for “Shandy” to grace art-house screens later this year.