News & Notes: Movies
Digital sound, midnight movies, and ''The Godfather III'' made news this week
When the Stephen Sondheim songs sensually slide out of Madonna’s golden throat this week in Dick Tracy, audiences at seven theaters in New York and Los Angeles are in for an aural treat. That’s because Cinema Digital Sound, a breakthrough in movie-theater audio, is premiering along with the summer’s most-talked-about movie. How much better is the sound delivered by this new system? ”It’s like listening to a CD instead of a cassette,” explains Barry Osborne, Dick Tracy‘s executive producer. ”When it’s a romantic scene, it’s very quiet with no hissing or popping. And when it’s a shoot-’em-up scene, you can hear all the guns. ” The separation and clarity of different sounds can be startling. At a recent demonstration, the noise of popcorn being munched was channeled through a speaker at the rear of the theater, causing some audience members to turn around in annoyance. Right now, the technology has been perfected only for theaters with 70-millimeter projection units; the required gadgetry runs about $20,000. By next summer, theaters that show the more standard 35-millimeter prints will also be able to feature CD-quality sound.
Hey wait, doesn’t Andy Garcia play the role of Vincent Mancini, the thuggish illegitimate child of the late Sonny Corleone in The Godfather Part III? Then what was he doing in a policeman’s uniform talking with director Francis Ford Coppola on location recently in lower Manhattan? Did he don the disguise to set up a hit on rival Joey Zasa, played by Joe Mantegna? Since nobody connected with the production wants to be known as a mob informant, we’ll have to wait until the picture is released during the Christmas season to discover Garcia’s gambit.
Midnight premieres have become the rage for this summer’s big-budget movies. Both Back to the Future Part III and Total Recall have kicked off their runs with 12:01 a.m. Friday showings. But leave it to Disney to put its own special merchandising twist on late-night moviegoing. About 1,500 of the 2,000 theaters where Dick Tracy debuts on June 15 are requiring patrons to buy in advance a special T-shirt bearing the movie logo and wear or bring it along to gain admittance to the midnight show. According to theater managers in New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, and California, sales of the shirts, which range in price from $12 to $20, were slow through early June. But they all anticipated a big rush closer to the premiere. What a bargain: First-show moviegoers get to pay more than double the price for a ticket and at the same time provide free advertising for Disney.
After two injury-plagued seasons in the NFL, Brian Bosworth is experimenting with a less hazardous profession:acting. The Boz will make his motion picture debut in The Brotherhood, an action-adventure film now in production that pits the mohawked Seattle Seahawk against a band of renegade bikers. With a medical exam of his ailing shoulder still pending, it appears that the flamboyant linebacker may have a better chance of delivering a hit on-screen than on the gridiron in 1990.
Director Oliver Stone is determined to give his Jim Morrison story, tentatively titled The Doors, an air of authenticity. Along with rocker Billy Idol, the cast features radical firebrand attorney William Kunstler in his movie debut playing — surprise! — a graying, hippie-haired lawyer who defends the Lizard King (Val Kilmer) against charges of public indecency.