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August 2001
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Another Friday On Ice

New Line Cinemahas given the green light for "Friday After Next," the third installment of the studio's "Friday" franchise, created by rapper-actor Ice Cube. The project is scheduled to go into production in the fall for a Thanksgiving 2002 release. Cast members Mike Epps, Don "D.C." Curry and John Witherspoon are scheduled to be back on board. Ice Cube wrote the script and will also be producing the project with Matt Alvarez through their studio-based Cube Vision.


LaSalle Crazy As Hell

ER’s Eriq LaSalle will make his directorial debut on Crazy As Hell. The story is based on the novel Satan and will star LaSalle, Michael Beach, Ronny Cox, Steven Weber and Tia Texada. The film is about a psychiatrist who agrees to film a documentary in 30 days about the effects of psychiatry on mental illness, but a couple of days later after checking in to do the study, a patient claiming to be the devil checks in. LaSalle will shoot the film while on hiatus from ER.



More on the Axel Foley Comeback

We reported last month that Eddie Murphy is set to reprise his role as Detroit detective Axel Foley in Beverly Hills Cop IV. What we forgot to tell you is that even though Murphy has been saying he's willing to star in the film for the past four years, there's still no word yet when the film will head into production. On a positive note, writer Jason Richman has been hired to pen the script.



Wayans To Be In "Whiteface"

Brothers Marlon and Shawn are working on a spoof story about a boy band.
"The Wayans brothers' next movie will be in whiteface," Marlon said. "Shawn's writing 'Boy Band,' about a struggling rock 'n' roll group that sucks. We infiltrate it in white make-up and turn it into one of those cute white-boy bands. As for all the hours we'll have to spend in make-up, we don't care as long as it's funny."



Michael Jackson To Produce And Voiceover

Michael Jackson, star of "The Wiz" and "Captain EO," will star in and produce an animated feature titled "The Way of the Unicorn, The Endangered One." Jackson will lend his voice for the character Sailor, an orphan who teams with a girl and a pack of endangered animals to save the planet. Production on the film begins this month, and the Associated Press reports the film could be in theaters as early as Spring 2003.



Rhames Suffers Sins Of The Father

Ving Rhames will star in the FX TV film "Sins of the Father," with Tom Sizemore about a man who finds out that his father is a member of the Ku Klux Klan and was involved in the Birmingham Church bombings that killed four girls. Rhames plays his friend. The film is scheduled to air on the cable network next season.



Diva Elite In Supernatural Flick

"Baby of the Family" is the tale of Lena McPherson, a young girl born with supernatural powers. This film has been a long time in the planning stages with production finally slated to begin this month in Macon, Georgia. The cast is a veritable diva list and includes Alfre Woodard, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Loretta Devine, Pam Grier, Vanessa Williams (of the Showtime series "Soul Food") and casting isn't over yet!



Tyrese May Act Again

   Tyrese told everyone that "Baby Boy" was it, no more acting. But now, with all the great reviews on his performance in the John Singleton flick, it's reported that Denzel Washington is thinking about asking the actor/singer to take the lead in "The Antwone Fisher Story," which Washington is directing and will co-star in.



Worf, Jordi And Crew Starting "Ten"

Patrick Stewart recently squelched rumours that he or Brent Spiner’s android character Data had agreed to appear in the upcoming Star Trek X movie only to be killed off. The news comes as a huge relief for distraught fans afraid that one or both wouldn’t make it out of the film in one piece. Star Trek X begins filming in October and costars Michael Dorn and Levar Burton.



Will Smith Plays Tag

Will Smith is considering a script for Paramount Pictures entitled, Tag. In the film Smith would play an innocent hero involved in a global conspiracy who becomes the target of an international hitman. The script is described as a modernized, big action version of "Three Days of the Condor."


Cloak and Dagger Comic Headed To Big Screen

Dimension Films and Marvel Studios will turn the comic, Cloak and Dagger into a live-action film. The comic, which debuted in 1985, centers on an odd set of teen runways. One is a rich white girl and the other is a streetwise black male. She can project a terrifying, all-encompassing darkness, while he can generate a blinding bright light. The two become vigilantes who protect other kids on the streets from corruption. Marvel Comics is very hot in Hollywood right now with their X-Men sequel, The Incredible Hulk (Ang Lee), Spiderman (Tobey Maguire) and Blade 2 (Wesley Snipes) all in the works.


John Ridley Sells Movie Rights To Another Novel

Warner Brothers has bought the screen rights to the upcoming John Ridley novel, Those Who Walk in Darkness. Joel Silver (The Matrix) will produce with Ridley (who wrote Three Kings). The story centers on a rookie cop charged with hunting down superhuman mutants and currently runs as an animated series on UrbanEntertainment.com. This is the second deal for Ridley from a website work. He developed Undercover Brother for Imagine Entertainment from another animated series from the same website.



Warner To Be On Cable

Malcolm-Jamal Warner is set to star alongside former 90210 star Luke Perry in the upcoming Showtime sci-fi series "Jeremiah." Created by sci-fi icon J. Michael Straczynski of "Babylon 5" fame. "Jeremiah" is set in a post-apocalyptic world where, almost a decade before, a deadly virus wiped out the world's adult
population sparing only those who hadn't reached puberty.



Glover Directs For Showtime

Danny Glover will direct the upcoming Showtime Original Picture "Just A Dream," set in 1960 about a young boy and his unlikely friendship with the town mechanic, played by Carl Lumbly ("Men of Honor" and "How Stella got her Groove Back"). Robby Benson and Ally Sheedy will also star. No airdate has been set for the film yet. Glover will soon be seen in the Showtime pic "3 AM."



Cube Up For Big Ticket

Ice Cube is teaming up with MTV "Jackass" star Johnny Knoxville for the film "Big Ticket." Little to tell about the movie at this time, except that filming begins next year.



Murphy, Myers, Diaz Looking For Big Payday On "Shrek" Sequel

Eddie Murphy, Mike Myers, and Cameron Diaz are negotiating a deal to make up to $35,000 per hour, for doing the "Shrek" sequel according to a report in Variety. The three leads deferred salaries for the original film, which is the highest grossing movie so far this year, and instead agreed to take in a share of the profits. So far they've raked in about $3 million apiece.



Internet's 'Lil Pimp' Jumps To Big Screen

Bernie Mac, Carmen Elektra, William Shatner, and Jennifer Tilly will lend their voices for the big screen debut of the Internet series "Lil' Pimp" about a nine year-old and his pimp buddies. TV Guide likens the series to the irreverent "South Park." We can only imagine the film carnage.



Rhames Shifts To Small Screen

Actor Ving Rhames has signed a deal to appear in three episodes of the NBC drama "UC-Undercover." Rhames will play drug lord Quito Real on the show. One or two of his episodes are expected to air during the November sweeps. Rhames and "UC'' producer Shane Salerno worked together on the upcoming biopic "Night Train,'' in which Rhames plays the legendary Sonny Liston.



Shawn And Marlon Want Animation

Shawn and Marlon Wayans are looking to break new feature film ground with an animated movie called Roaches. The writing is apparently done, but the rest of the development process remains unsettled at the present time.



Jones And Underwood In G

The new Christopher Scott Cherot-directed film, G, has started production. It's a contemporary spin on The Great Gatsby that exploits the rage hip-hop has become in the Hamptons. It tells the story of a rap mogul who built an empire solely to win back the love of his life. G will star Richard T. Jones (The Wood) and Blair Underwood and is being produced by Andrew Lauren. Lauren’s father, fashion magnate Ralph Lauren, dressed the cast of the original Great Gatsby.



Deveare Smith Wants To Direct Cabrini Green

Playwright and actress Anna Deveare Smith is negotiating to make her directorial debut for HBO on Cabrini Green. A film of several families who settle in the Chicago housing project in the 1940s and watch their quality of life erode over the years. Cabrini Green will shoot in the fall. Smith most recently played a recurring role on the ABC series, The Practice.



Snipes A Busy Father, Boxer And Slayer

Wesley Snipes is about to play someone you'll love to hate in his new movie "Zigzag,"about a mentally handicapped teen. Co-star, Elizabeth Pena says, "He plays the boy's extremely abusive father." Staying busy, Snipes will play another dad in the upcoming film, "Liberty Stands Still." Then, he'll star with Ving Rhames as a jailhouse boxer in "Undisputed." And everyone, of course, is waiting to see the star in the upcoming "Blade" sequel.



Dolomite May Return

John Singleton's "Shaft," starring Samuel L. Jackson may have sparked the return of another blaxploitation favorite. Rapper/actor LL Cool J is being courted for the title role of the flashy club owner in a remake of "Dolemite."



Epps Leading Gangs

Omar Epps, Charles Dutton, Treach, and Dana Delaney will star in the Showtime drama "Conviction." The cable movie planned for next year has Epps playing a gang leader who uses his time in jail to get an education, and upon his release, works toward bringing about peace among gangs.



Carey Already Filming Second Effort

Mariah Carey makes her acting debut in "Glitter" August 31, but Hollywood is already impressed. Carey is already filming her second movie with co-star Mira Sorvino titled "Wise Girls." Filming may run into problems, however, if Carey's medical problems persist.



All-Star Cast For Two Can Play

Vivica A. Fox and Morris Chestnut have been cast in the upcoming romantic comedy "Two Can Play That Game." While the two will star opposite each other, the cast also includes Gabrielle Union, Mo'Nique, Tamala Jones, Wendy Raquel and, R&B king Bobby Brown. The film will be in theaters mid September.



Vin Diesel To Be A Terminator?

It's been rumored that actor Vin Diesel may be negotiating to take over the lead in the "Terminator" films. But friends say there are no plans to take the sci-fi franchise from Arnold Schwarzeneggar. Diesel says that if he played any part, it would be as a villain, but he insists there's nothing on the table for now. The third installment in the "Terminator" series is still being cast.



Denzel To Produce, Direct and Star

   Denzel Washington has a September start date for production of the Fox Searchlight movie "The Antwone Fisher Story," which he will direct, produce and co-star in. The film will be based on the life of Fisher, who was born in a prison, abused, raised in a succession of foster homes -- and managed to turn his life around in the Navy and search for the family that abandoned him. Casting is still in the works.