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January 5, 2007
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Volume 35
Issue 01
 
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Deep Inside Hollywood
Deep Inside Hollywood
MICHELLE RODRIGUEZ TO BATTLE IN SEATTLE
Michelle Rodriguez may be a Lost girl these days, but she's certainly finding her way into very interesting company. Not only is Rodriguez currently dating her BloodRayne co-star, Lesbian sex symbol Kristanna Loken, but she's also starring opposite Charlize Theron, Woody Harrelson, Andre Benjamin, Susan Sarandon, Ray Liotta, Joshua Jackson, Channing Tatum, and Martin Henderson in The Battle in Seattle, about the city's 1999 protests during the World Trade Organization conference. Directed by Stuart Townsend - Theron's paramour, who played the omnisexual vampire Lestat in Queen of the Damned - the film hopes to recapture one of recent history's most vivid examples of civil disobedience, which brought together radicals of varying stripes and agendas. Look for Battle to ruffle the right-wing noise machine when it storms theaters later in 2007.

RUFUS WAINWRIGHT UNLEASHES HIS INNER DIVA
Queer Canadian troubadour Rufus Wainwright appears to be giving James Brown some serious competition for that "hardest-working man in show business" title. Coming off his critically acclaimed recreation of Judy Garland's legendary Carnegie Hall performance and his tour with the "Wainwright Family and Friends Christmas" show, Wainwright has been commissioned by New York's Metropolitan Opera to create an original work. With a busy '06 behind him, the singer will cloister himself away to compose Prima Donna, a day in the life of an opera singer. Look for the character to have more than a passing resemblance to old-school divas like Maria Callas, Beverly Sills, and Regine Crispin. No promises as to when the opera will make its debut, but early estimates predict a 2008 unveiling.

LILY TOMLIN TRAVELS BAD ROAD TO TELEVISION
Lily Tomlin, one of the funniest people on earth, is making her way back to TV in the latest pilot from Designing Women creator Linda Bloodworth-Thomason. The Dallas-set 12 Miles of Bad Road takes a comic look at a wealthy matriarchy and real-estate empire, so expect the jewelry, shoulder pads, and especially the hair to be crazily enormous. Tomlin stars as Amelia Shakespeare, and the HBO show's very talented cast includes comedy veteran Mary Kay Place and Deadwood alums Kim Dickens and Sean Bridgers. If Bloodworth-Thomason can do for Texas realtors (a plum target for satire if there ever was one) what she did for Atlanta interior designers, look for Bad Road - set to debut sometime before the end of 2007 - to be cable's newest hit.

BACK TO AUSTRALIA FOR BAZ LUHRMANN
It can't be easy creating a follow-up to the extravaganza that was Moulin Rouge, but Australian filmmaker Luhrmann is giving it his best shot. The director - who refuses to call himself "straight," even though he's married to a woman - has announced plans for an epic starring Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman, titled simply Australia. The film stars Kidman as a British aristocrat who moves to the continent in the 1930s and falls for restless native Jackman. Their romance has to endure the Japanese bombing of Darwin during World War II. Australia starts shooting in March after many delays - the film was originally going to star Russell Crowe as Kidman's leading man, but after he dropped out, the production was stuck in limbo until Jackman came aboard.

Romeo San Vicente has never met Hugh Jackman - outside of his Wolverine fantasies, of course. Romeo can be reached care of this publication or at DeepInsideHollywood@qsyndicate.com.

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