Entertainment news for the week of September 13
Gwyneth Paltrow, Maxine Bahns, and Jerry Seinfeld made the news this week
Great Coincidence: Is that…? No, Gwyneth Paltrow and Brad Pitt are not making another movie together. But passersby in Manhattan’s Tompkins Square Park may have thought differently. For the modern-day screen version of Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations, Paltrow shared a tender moment with costar Ethan Hawke, who sports a very Pitt-like ‘do in the film. ”There was a little confusion for a second,” reports producer Art Linson (Heat). ”Unless they realized there was a movie being made, people thought, There’s Gwyneth with Brad.” The addition of Paltrow to the Great cast, which also includes Robert De Niro, Anne Bancroft, and Hank Azaria, guarantees on-screen heat, but it also makes filming in public a bit hectic. ”It’s paparazzi time, that goes without saying,” says Linson. ”And it’s going to get much worse for her before it gets better.”
Twice to Meet You: You get only one chance to make a first impression — or so it’s said. Apparently, the folks associated with She’s the One don’t buy that. Otherwise, why would ads for the new romantic comedy directed by Edward Burns — whose low-budget The Brothers McMullen made headlines last year — proclaim that it’s ”Introducing” Maxine Bahns, when Bahns, Burns’ real-life girlfriend, had a leading role in McMullen? It seems the powers that be at Fox Searchlight, which is distributing One, thought an ”introduction” in the $3.5 million feature afforded her more cachet. (A spokesman from the studio was unavailable for comment.) But the tactic isn’t a new one. ”It happens all the time,” says critic and historian Leonard Maltin. ”The people promoting the film are saying ‘We want you to pay special attention to this person.’ This was done when Helen Reddy made Airport 1975,” he notes. Just goes to show what an introductory seal of approval can do for your career.
— Joe Dziemianowicz
Out of the Question: The time: a Tuesday night in August. The place: stage 9 of CBS Studios in Studio City, Calif. The participants: Jerry Seinfeld, his 21-year-old girlfriend, Shoshanna Lonstein, and a studio audience gathered to see the first taping of the new season of Seinfeld. The scene: Jeez, some of those Must See TV fans make that invasive Cosmo Kramer look like Miss Manners. After NBC’s neat-and-single comedian warmed up the crowd with a few jokes about the oppressive heat, he asked if anyone had any questions. Unfortunately for him, one woman spoke up. ”Jerry,” she asked, ”what size cups does your girlfriend wear?” An awkward silence. ”Well, we’ve suddenly taken a nasty turn here, haven’t we?” replied the notoriously private star. ”I don’t think that’s any of my business, much less yours. By the way, what size jock do you wear?” Seinfeld snarked. ”Looks like a large to me.”
Dubba B or Not Dubba B: Sign No. 1 that the WB may be trying too hard: A phone call to the Burbank office of the fledgling network reveals that receptionists are required to answer the phone, ”Dubba-dubba-dubba-UB.” B-b-but why? ”We’re trying to reinforce our image,” says Garth Ancier, head of programming. (WB billboards have begun to spring up that utilize the signature stammer.) Adds network head Jamie Kellner: ”I think ‘dubba dubba’ is fun. I’m having a good time and everybody’s saying it. My son loves ‘dubba dubba.”’ Okay, but his son’s not the one answering ‘da phones. Receptionist Heather Miller, 23, says the unique salutation was ”weird for about an hour, but it’s like second nature now.” Miller doesn’t even mind the crank calls anymore. ”The production office from The Wayans Brotherscalled and put me on speakerphone,” she says. Fortunately, for Miller and others, creativity is encouraged. ”You’re allowed to use as many dubbas as you like,” says Kellner. ”In the world of ‘dubba’ there are no rules.”