Leonardo DiCaprio will team with Martin Scorsese; Katie Holmes woos Michael Douglas; charges against Ol' Dirty Bastard are dropped
CASTING In a powerhouse lineup, Martin Scorsese will direct Leonardo DiCaprio in ”Gangs of New York” this fall. And if this isn’t enough heavyweight talent, Robert De Niro is considering joining the project…. ”Dawson’s Creek” fans will be pleased to know that Katie Holmes has joined the ever expanding cast of ”Wonder Boys,” playing a college student with a crush on writers-blocked professor Michael Douglas.
OFF THE HOOK A New York grand jury ordered all charges — including attempted murder and possession of a weapon — dropped against Ol’ Dirty Bastard. The rapper was arrested last month and kept in jail for a week when cops maintained he fired a gun at their car when they pulled him over. ODB’s scheduled court appearance tomorrow has been canceled.
AWARDS Kevin Spacey was named best actor by the London Critics’ Circle for his lead role in a revival of ”The Iceman Cometh.” He begins his Broadway run with the show (also starring Tony Danza) later this winter.
RECOVERING Gene Siskel had returned to work last June after his May brain surgery to remove a growth, but apparently it was too soon: He is taking the next nine months off from his TV show with Roger Ebert and from writing reviews for the Chicago Tribune to recuperate.
REEL DEALS The Oompa-Loompas are coming back: Screenwriter Scott Frank (”Out of Sight”) has been commissioned to draft a screenplay for another adaptation of Roald Dahl’s ”Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” for Warner Bros. Dahl’s widow, Liccy, who reportedly felt the 1971 musical version with Gene Wilder didn’t quite capture the book, has full approval over the film?…. Kyra Sedgwick (”Phenomenon”) has signed with Disney to produce and star in her own TV series. At this point, it’s not clear whether it will be a sitcom or a drama.
GOING INTERNATIONAL TV producer Dick Wolf, who has taped all of his shows in New York (”Law and Order,” ”New York Undercover”) will be traveling soon: He’s been appointed an Honorary Consul of Monaco by Prince Rainier. Wolf will act as a liaison between Monaco and the film and TV industry in L.A., promoting filming in the celebrated city.
SPLITTING UP British rockers the Boo Radleys are disbanding after ten years and seven albums together, saying they ”achieved everything they could” as a band. The group’s last CD, ”Kingsize,” was released last month. TODAY IN HISTORY In 1983, Karen Carpenter died of anorexia nervosa.