By Romeo San Vicente
Jodie Foster who starred in “Panic Room” has signed on to star in a new Spke Lee film “Inside Man.”
Jodie Foster goes ‘Inside’
Jodie Foster fans, get ready for your windfall. The picky-about-projects star has two films in production at the moment. First there’s “Flight Plan,” a thriller Romeo previously reported on, about a woman whose child goes missing in the middle of an airline flight. Now Foster has signed on to star in a new drama from Spike Lee, “Inside Man,” for Universal. Also starring Denzel Washington and Clive Owen, the heist drama centers on a police officer and a bank robber involved in a hostage-taking standoff. Foster plays a lawyer brought in to represent characters whose identities are as yet unspecified and whose presence will make the already tense plot developments even more complicated. Brian Grazer will produce and Lee will direct from a script by newcomer Russell Gewirtz. The film starts shooting this summer with an anticipated 2006 release date. And it can’t come soon enough to erase the memory of Lee’s lesbian-themed flop, “She Hate Me.”
Beyonce is your ‘Dreamgirl’
Romeo senses a big hit coming from Bill Condon. The gay director – whose “Kinsey” was a critical, if not commercial, success – has one of the biggest pop stars of the moment circling his “Dreamgirls” project. Beyonce Knowles is in talks to take one of the three lead female roles in the long-awaited screen version of the Broadway musical, which is the fictionalized story of the Supremes. Knowles handles herself capably on screen, and her likability factor is sky-high, so the pairing can only spell success for both parties. And Romeo assumes that Knowles won’t be taking on the part of Effie – made famous in the 1970s by then-plus-sized Jennifer Holiday – unless she plans to go on a “Bridget Jones”-style, method-actor eating binge and become extra-bootylicious.
French ‘Thieves’ to speak English
French films being remade in English are nothing new. But gay French filmmaker Andre Techine is about to see his work in translation for the first time. Warner Independent Pictures has made deal to adapt his 1996 film, “Les Voleurs” (“Thieves”), for English-speaking audiences, with a script to be written by Larry Gross (“We Don’t Live Here Anymore”). The original film starred French actors Daniel Auteuil and Catherine Deneuve – in a lesbian role – in the story of a police officer who is the black-sheep son in a family of criminals. The new version will be set in New Orleans, but no casting moves have been made yet. Look for “Thieves” to steal its way into American art-house theaters sometime in 2006.
TV Land is ‘Tickled Pink’
Gay and lesbian viewers have long been attuned to the influences queer writers, directors, and actors have had on mainstream television programs. Entire college theses could be written about “Bewitched” alone. Now, just in time for the traditional Gay Pride celebrations in June, cable channel TV Land will air “Tickled Pink,” a one-hour special exploring the ways in which what we watch on the small screen has been shaped by gay imaginations. “Golden Girls” star Rue McClanahan and “I Dream of Jeannie”‘s Barbara Eden are scheduled to be included in the talking-heads line-up, dishing about queer TV – the old and new, the lesbian (“Xena: Warrior Princess”) and the gay (“Desperate Housewives”), the openly queer and the secretly coded. Get ready to think pink when the special premieres on June 1.