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Entertainment news for July 31, 1992

Macaulay Culkin, Chuck D, and Geena Davis made headlines this week

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Sugar-Plum Role: Macaulay Culkin may have spent one Christmas home alone, but this holiday season he’s joining the dance corps. The preteen tycoon plays the Prince in The Nutcracker, a theatrical release featuring the New York City Ballet (it’s affiliated with the School of American Ballet, where Culkin studied dance). Filming starts next month.

Dress Down: Has Public Enemy’s Chuck D softened his politics for fashion? The new Rapp Style line, created by Chuck and launched in a series of ads on MTV this month, sports a microphone gripped by a fist as a logo — a far cry from PE’s original signature image, a man in a shooting target. According to Chuck D’s dad and business partner, Lorenzo Ridenhour, Rapp Style clothing is out to make a buck — ”It doesn’t make a political point.” Prices range from $18 for T’s and caps to $60 for jackets, and there’s even an oversize Phatline. Rapp Style items will soon be on sale at the finer department and specialty stores.

Heavy Hitter: ”This will be the Raging Bull of the ’90s,” James Woods brags about the biopic he plans to produce and direct. His subject: heavyweight champ Sonny Liston’s ”amazing and tragic” reign at the dawn of the civil rights era. ”White America wanted its Negroes happy and shuffling,” sneers Woods. He hopes to hire Frank Pierson, Woods’ director in Citizen Cohn, to write the script.

No Deposit, No Return: A seminal episode is planned for the fall on Dream On, HBO’s hip sitcom. Bumbling baby boomer/book editor Martin Tupper (Brian Benben) will make a sperm-bank donation for a platonic friend, a baby-craving writer (guest star Jenny Agutter). But his artificially placed seed fails to take root; will sex be necessary?

Bible Belter: During filming of A League of Their Own, part of the cast decided to put on a backstage sing-along, just for the hell of it. ”We were blasting ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ (from the makeup trailer) every morning,” says Geena Davis. ”We were working so hard; when you’re that exhausted you have to find something.” They even concluded they had someone for the toughest part: ”(Madonna) is a singer,” says Davis, ”and Judas was the most challenging part vocally.” But the Material Girl never chimed in.

Written by: Rebecca Ascher-Walsh, Giselle Benatar, Nancy Mills, Pat H. Broeske, Diane Goldner