Jennifer Lopez eyes her next role
Plus, Brad Pitt may team with Robert Redford, and Elton John needs help paying his bills
CASTING Jennifer Lopez‘s musical success hasn’t made her forget about acting: She’s eyeing a $5 million pay day to star in ”Angel Eyes” as a cop trying to come to terms with the child abuse she once suffered…. Brendan Fraser and his ”Mummy” director Stephen Sommers might rejuvenate another oldie before reteaming for a sequel to this spring’s hit. The two are negotiating to join forces for a remake of ”Around the World in 80 Days”…. Robert Redford has decided not to act in his next directorial effort, the golf flick ”The Legend of Bagger Vance,” and may cede the starring role to his ”A River Runs Through It” protégé, Brad Pitt. The plot centers around a small-time putter and WWI vet who becomes a champion under the tutelage of Vance, his African-American caddie…. John Leguizamo will play wee artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec in ”Moulin Rouge,” a love story set in Paris’ bohemian scene in 1899. Baz Luhrmann (”Romeo and Juliet”) directs, and Ewan McGregor and Nicole Kidman are already set in the leads…. Robin Tunney (”The Craft”) has joined Chris O’Donnell in the extreme mountain-climbing adventure ”The Vertical Limit.”
IN DUTCH Elton John‘s shopping sprees are legendary (he reportedly charges as much as $400,000 a week on purchases), but he may have overextended himself: According to London’s Sunday Times, the singer is applying for a $40 million loan from a finance house to pay off all of his outstanding bills, which include an $11 million overdraft from a British bank, and another loan of around $4 million. He reportedly wants to put some of his homes up for collateral and will promise to turn over proceeds from future and past hits.
STRESSED OUT Apparently Stanley Kubrick’s 52-week shoot of ”Eyes Wide Shut” wasn’t the easiest thing to digest: In an interview with Time, Tom Cruise confesses that he developed an ulcer during filming. ”I didn’t want to tell Stanley,” says Cruise. ”He panicked. I wanted this to work, but you’re playing with dynamite when you act. Emotions kick up. You try not to kick things up, but you go through things you can’t help.”
RECUPERATING It wouldn’t be Top Headlines without some drama from Michael Jackson. He was taken to a hospital after a charity concert in Munich on Sunday night for undisclosed reasons but was discharged on Monday. Perhaps he was brought in for a bad case of hurt feelings, because scheduled guests Luciano Pavarotti and Elizabeth Taylor both dropped out of the Jackson-organized concert, citing health reasons…. The keyboardist for the Black Crowes, Eddie Harsch, was rushed to a hospital for emergency surgery when he fell ill on the band’s tour bus near Brussels, according to Reuters. The band’s spokesman would not comment on Harsch’s specific ailment, but the band is debating what to do about the rest of the dates booked for their European tour…. Nobel-winning author Gabriel Garcia Marquez was admitted to a clinic in Bogota, Colombia, after complaining of exhaustion, and now the 71-year-old is undergoing tests. ”Be patient and let’s wait for the results,” his wife told reporters, giving no specifics about his ailment.
SIGNING OFF Nicholas Turturro is leaving ”NYPD Blue” in the midst of next season. He’ll appear in a few episodes to phase his character out and get one last shoe-squeezing in, but then he’ll get to work on a new sitcom that he’s developing for the WB.
LETTER PERFECT As a result of a national vote, next year the U.S. Postal Service will release stamps with ”Titanic,” ”Seinfeld,” and ”Jurassic Park” on them. It’s part of a special set of 15 stamps commemorating memorable subjects from the 1990s.