Who's making deals in the week of Dec. 10, 2004
MOVIES Like a 1960s beehive, the Hairspray movie musical is shaping up! Fab sign: Producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, who shepherded Chicago to glory, are on board to help turn the movie — turned — Broadway hit back into a movie for 2006. (They haven’t got a cast yet — of the original B’way bunch, only Harvey Fierstein is being considered to return as big bad Edna Turnblad.) Well, Craig and Neil, think we’ll ever see an original movie musical, not just Broadway knockoffs like the upcoming movies of Phantom of the Opera, The Producers, and Rent? ”First the public needs titles they’re familiar with,” explains Meron, ”and when they get used to the form all over again, then you introduce musicals created specifically for the screen.” Adds Zadan, who’s also cooking up song-and-dancers based on Damn Yankees and Footloose with Meron, ”It’s our goal to take a crack at doing an original film musical after we make the movies that we’re developing right now.”
TELEVISION If you liked Sandra Oh in Sideways, rent the weird 1999 black comedy Last Night, where she falls for this guy on literally the last day on Earth. (Sarah Polley’s in it too.) Then get ready for Grey’s Anatomy, next month’s ABC series about, Oh says, ”five surgical interns that go into their residency at a hospital in Seattle.” Oh also has oodles of indie films in the can or in the works, including Sorry Haters, Hard Candy, 3 Needles, and Cake. But there’s more! On her hiatus, ”I’m going to Korea to shoot a film with [writer- director] Grace Lee called Smells Like Butter. It’s about this Korean-American woman who’s looking for a husband, and she decides to go back to the villages in Korea to find one. It’s hilarious.”… Candice Bergen and William Shatner on screen together — it sounds a little like Celebrity Deathmatch. But throw in James Spader and no, suddenly you’ve got Boston Legal! The Murphy Brown star will play the Schmidt of the Crane, Poole & Schmidt law firm. (Shatner plays Crane, and Spader plays…Shore, not Poole — psych!) Bergen’s eps begin airing Jan. 9.