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Entertainment news for July 23, 1993

Stephen King, MTV, and Robert De Niro made headlines this week

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BIG-SCREEM ANDROGYNY: A chronicle of true love and the quest for employment, It’s Pat: The Movie based on Julia Sweeney‘s sexually dubious Saturday Night Live character, is set to begin filming in August. The script was authored by Sweeney, her husband, Stephen Hibbert, and Jim Emerson, but the trio admits they got tips from an unlikely source: Quentin Tarantino, screenwriter and director of 1992’s violent Reservoir Dogs. ”When (Dogs star) Harvey Keitel hosted SNL, Quentin came along and we became friends,” recalls Sweeney, and Tarantino agreed to have a go at a Pat rewrite at her request. Sweeney says several of Tarantino’s ideas are in the final script but promises ”there are no torture scenes and Pat will retain both ears.” — Lance Loud

KING OF KINGS: The King of Pop wants to work with the King of Horror — Stephen King, that is. The megabucks author says Michael Jackson approached him about scripting a video for a song the Gloved One is composing for Addams Family Values, out this November. ”He’s got some real specific ideas about what he wants to do,” King says. ”But I haven’t even heard the song yet.” If it happens, the clip would probably be a mini-film on the order of 1983’s ”Thriller.” The author hasn’t met Michael yet, but he offers this observation: ”He’s a very strange person.” Be afraid…be very afraid. — Bruce Fretts

GENERATION ZZZZZ: MTV has moved its Long Island hideaway from one Hampton beach house to another. Were VJs John Norris, Adam Curry, Kennedy, and Bill Bellamy waking up the neighbors? Not quite. ”Being MTV, people would expect that we would have been loud and gotten complaints, but that’s not the case,” says an MTV spokeswoman. ”We decided we needed a place that would allow us to handle more people — more guests, more parking.” The new house is ”down by a series of nightclubs,” says the spokeswoman, ”and they seem to be welcoming us with open arms.” Why not? Seems VJs make good neighbors. At the old house, they made performers Run-D.M.C. keep the volume down out of courtesy to the people next door. — Melissa Rawlins

TREK STOP: So much for the final mission of the starship Enterprise. Although Paramount plans to use the cast of TV’s Next Generation for its latest Star Trek movie, the producers are hoping to bring Kirk, Spock, and McCoy back as ”a bridge” between the series. ”Two scripts are being written, and both involve characters from the first show,” says a Paramount spokeswoman, adding that neither crew has signed on yet. Currently untitled, the Next Generation feature is set to begin shooting next spring for a Christmas ’94 release. — Frank Spotnitz

MONSTER MASK: Don’t expect to see Robert De Niro with typical creature features in Kenneth Branagh‘s Frankenstein. To prepare for the shoot, starting in London this fall, De Niro has been undergoing facial plaster casting to achieve the right look. ”It’s going to be very different from Boris Karloff,” says Branagh, who — in addition to directing — chose to portray the mad doctor instead of the monster. ”I couldn’t play that role,” he says. ”I hate getting up at 3 a.m. to sit in a makeup chair. I enjoy sleeping late.” — Cindy Pearlman

NORTHERN EXPOSURE: Steven Seagal is now putting the Eskimo language under siege. Many Yup’ik words are used in the upcoming On Deadly Ground, Seagal’s directorial debut about a whistle-blowing pipeline worker marked for death by an oil baron. But the movie’s non-Eskimo cast and crew are having trouble with two character names, Maktak and Etok (actually Inupiaq words), which, if pronounced incorrectly, can mean ”whale fat” and ”derriere.” Says technical adviser Brian Wescott, who has hired native dialogue coaches to help avoid confusion, ”Some of the locals have been cracking up on the set.” — Jeffrey Wells