Plus, Pearl Jam, Alanis Morissette, and Korn team up for a new album to benefit Kosovo refugees, and 'The Phantom Menace' soundtrack has a hot debut
FOLLOW-UP The makers of ”The Mummy” are already thinking sequel, thanks to its record-breaking $43.4 million opening last weekend. Writer/director Stephen Sommers is conjuring up a plot where the indefatigable mummy turns up in London.
MUSIC RELEASE Pearl Jam‘s fan-club-only single ”Last Kiss” will lead off a new multi-artist record to benefit Kosovan refugees, to be released on June 15. Also contributing rare, live, and unreleased tracks to ”No Boundaries” are Alanis Morissette, Korn, Rage Against the Machine, Neil Young, Black Sabbath, Bush, Ben Folds Five, Oasis, Sarah McLachlan, Indigo Girls, The Wallflowers, Jamiroquai, and Peter Gabriel.
KA-CHING! ”The Phantom Menace” may not hit theaters for another six days, but its soundtrack is already moving fast,debuting at number three on the Billboard chart this week with 173,000 units sold. This is unprecedented for a classical soundtrack album, especially because the movie isn’t even out yet, but it was certainly helped by the constant airplay that MTV and VH1 are giving the ”Phantom Menace” music video.
TV WATCH The “Homicide” cops have solved their last case, according to the Associated Press. A source close to the show said that NBC has decided not to bring the show back for an eighth season. The last original episode will air May 21. Among the shows making next season’s cut on NBC is ”Just Shoot Me,” which the network is considering moving to Thursday nights at 9:30, displacing ”Veronica’s Closet,” according to Variety. ”Closet” will likely stay on the air, however, and might move to follow ”Suddenly Susan,” creating a new theme night for NBC: ”Laughless Monday!” The network will announce its official fall lineup this Monday.
CASTING Sharon Stone may play a single mother with a soft spot for gambling and other illicit hobbies who brings her shy boyfriend (”Mrs. Brown”’s Billy Connolly) out of his shell just in time for him to save her from the Mob…. Lou Diamond Phillips has joined Dina Meyer (”Starship Troopers”) in ”Bats,” a horror film that’s like ”The Birds” with webbed wings…. Sitcom mainstay Debra Messing (”Will & Grace”) has gone biblical, taking the role of Mary Magdalene in the CBS miniseries ”Jesus.” Does Pontius Pilate count as a ”wacky neighbor”?…. Robert Forster (”Jackie Brown”) has joined the Jim Carrey/Farrelly brothers comedy ”Me, Myself and Irene” as Carrey’s cop boss…. Lea Thompson has signed up for the indie ”Some Guys Have All the Luck,” playing an oddball whose nephew turns her life around.
REEL DEALS The nation’s interminable wait is over: after 14 years, Burt Reynolds is directing again. He’ll also star in ”The Last Producer” as an aging dealmaker who is trying to make one last masterpiece before he’s forced out by the younger generation. Lauren Holly and Benjamin Bratt will costar.