Leonardo DiCaprio's next picture is delayed
Plus, BMG execs resign after the Napster deal, the WB reups ''Roswell,'' ''American Pie 2'' casting call goes online, and more
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LEO DreamWorks’ plans for a lucrative Leonardo DiCaprio vehicle have been put on hold indefinitely. The actor with a $100 million mug was supposed to move straight from his current project, Martin Scorsese‘s ”Gangs of New York,” into ”Catch Me If You Can,” a DW biopic of the youngest fugitive ever to land on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List. But with ”Gangs” running behind schedule and a possible Screen Actors Guild strike looming on the horizon, the studio says it’s unlikely that the film can be shot this year, Variety reports.
As of Sunday, DreamWorks was in negotiations with the ”Beach” boy to make ”Catch Me” his first poststrike project. Meanwhile, sources close to the actor told Variety that he was never comfortable with the idea of trying to shoot ”Catch Me” quickly before the strikes. ”He just doesn’t believe the creative process should be held hostage to a strike deadline,” a source said.
SHAKEUP Two top execs have resigned from Bertelsmann Entertainment in the wake of the media giant’s decision to merge with Napster. BMG prez and chief executive Strauss Zelnick and BMG chairman Michael Dornemann announced their imminent departures yesterday. ”I respect the new generation at the company, but there’s a different viewpoint,” Dornemann told Reuters. While both execs say they support the controversial Napster deal — which was orchestrated by Bertelsmann chairman Thomas Middelhoff — insiders say they initially balked at the idea of joining forces with the Internet file swapping service. (Before the deal, Bertelsmann was part of a group of five big music companies that are suing Napster.) Sources also told Reuters that other factors — such as the company’s decision to restructure, which will limit both execs’ power over the new merger, and the removal of Clive Davis from his position as president of Arista — also precipitated their resignations. ”These issues have been brewing for a long time,” one source said.
TV NEWS ”Roswell” fans, take heart: The WB has ordered nine additional episodes of the teen sci fi show, which means the net is planning to run a full season of the once threatened sophomore series. Now that ”Roswell” is giving the WB its best Monday night 9 p.m. Nielsen ratings since ”Buffy the Vampire Slayer” moved out of that slot last January, it seems the future for the show — and its ardent following — looks bright. All that talk about cancellation was probably just part of a CIA coverup anyway.
NIXED Limp Bizkit canceled yet another show in the Anger Management Tour because frontman Fred Durst was suffering from a sore throat. The sold out gig was supposed to take place in Indianapolis on Friday night. Fred should stick to ballads; they’re easier on the pipes.
LEGALESE Producer John Ryan is suing Carlos Santana for breach of contract. Ryan claims that Santana and his management company, Star Faith, have failed to pay royalties on three songs he produced in 1982. ”Santana and Star Faith have engaged in a systematic pattern of hiding income received from the sale of the masters, thereby depriving Ryan of his share of such producer royalty fees due in compliance with the operative agreement,” the suit states. Santana’s lawyers could not be reached for comment. Gosh, can’t anyone just get rich in peace?
CASTING CALL Universal Pictures is using the Web to find ”featured extras” for ”American Pie 2.” The studio is looking for one male and one female, 18 or older. Applications can be sent via Hypnotic.com. This has nothing to do with the impending Screen Actors Guild strike, right?
REUNION The Pixies are getting back together! Sort of. Two members of the protogrunge ’80s group may be reuniting briefly in concert. Frank Black plans to incorporate two Pixies staples — ”Where Is My Mind” and ”Monkey Goes to Heaven” — into his upcoming Frank Black and the Catholics tour. And rumors abound that guitarist Joey Santiago might show up for a Catholics gig at the Camden Underground in London on Nov. 15, according to Rolling Stone. Wow.