Plus: Liev Schreiber in final talks to play William Stryker in ''Wolverine,'' Kim Basinger joins Charlize Theron in ''Burning Plain,'' Deborah Kerr dies at 86, and more...

By Mike Bruno
Updated October 18, 2007 at 04:00 AM EDT
Barry King/; Gregg DeGuire/

Abrams taps Chris Pine, Karl Urban
Chris Pine (Just My Luck) will play a young Captain James T. Kirk and Karl Urban (Lord of the Rings) has been cast as Dr. Leonard ”Bones” McCoy in J.J. Abrams’ upcoming Star Trek movie for Paramount. Pine has been in talks for the role for some time, but he was also negotiating a role opposite George Clooney in Joe Carnahan’s White Jazz. Both films were shooting at the same time, and Pine ultimately chose to do Star Trek over Jazz. Just last week, Abrams cast John Cho (Harold and Kumar) as Sulu, Simon Pegg (Hot Fuzz) as Scotty, and Eric Bana (Hulk) as the villain Nero. Also on board are Zoe Saldana (Guess Who, Drumline) as the young Uhura, Anton Yelchin (Hearts in Atlantic) as the young Chekov, and Zachary Quinto (Heroes) as the young Spock. Original Spock Leonard Nimoy will also appear in the movie. Little is known about the plot other than it will probably chronicle the Enterprise crew’s early days at the Starfleet Academy. The character of McCoy, originated by DeForest Kelley, didn’t trust advanced technology and frequently sparred with Spock in debates of logic vs. emotion. He was responsible for several Trek catchphrases, including ”He’s dead, Jim” and ”Dammit Jim, I’m a doctor, not a …,” ending in a profession in which he had no training. (Hollywood Reporter)

Schreiber in talks for Wolverine
Liev Schreiber is in final talks to play a younger version of Wolverine’s nemesis William Stryker in the upcoming Wolverine movie, which 20th Century Fox has just announced it will release on May 1, 2009. Brian Cox played Stryker in X2. Hugh Jackman will reprise his role as the title character in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which director Gavin Hood (Tsotsi) begins shooting later this year. The movie will explore Wolverine’s violent and romantic past, his complex relationship with Victor Creed, aka Sabretooth, as well as his dealings with other mutants. The only other film currently set to open on May 1, 2009 is Disney’s animated G-Force. The three previous X-Men movies have grossed more than $1 billion worldwide. Fox is pursuing another X-Men spin-off, based on the character Magneto, played by Ian McKellan in the original movies. (Variety)

Basinger joins Theron in Burning
Kim Basinger will star alongside Charlize Theron in the cast of Guillermo Arriaga’s directorial debut, The Burning Plain, for Mark Cuban’s 2929 Prods. Arriaga, who wrote the screenplay for Babel, also wrote Burning, which weaves together two storylines: one is about Gina (Basinger), the mother of Sylvia (Theron), as seen in childhood, and the other follows Sylvia as she tries to find common ground with her parents after a turbulent childhood. The two narratives eventually converge. Shooting is scheduled to start early next month. Basinger is to shoot The Informers opposite Billy Bob Thornton later this month and will next be seen in the indie thriller While She Was Out. (Variety)

Deborah Kerr dies at 86
Actress Deborah Kerr, perhaps best known for roles in The King and I and From Here to Eternity, died on Tuesday (Oct. 16) at the age of 86 in Suffolk in Eastern England. She was suffering from Parkinson’s Disease. Her beach sex scene with Burt Lancaster in Eternity, as waves crashed all around them, is one of cinema’s most famous scenes. She was nominated for an Academy Award six times, but only received one in 1994 when she was presented with an honorary Oscar for her distinguished career. Her best actress nominations were for Edward, My Son (1949), From Here to Eternity (1953), The King and I (1956), Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison (1957), Separate Tables (1958), and The Sundowners (1960). She was also well-known for her role opposite Cary Grant in An Affair to Remember and The Innocents (an adaptation of the Henry James novella Turn of the Screw). Kerr was active until the mid-1980s, with The Assam Garden, Hold the Dream, and Reunion at Fairborough all in 1985. Kerr is survived by husband Peter Viertel, her novelist-screenwriter second husband, whom she married in 1960, as well as two daughters and three grandchildren (AP via Yahoo!)

The CW cancels Online Nation
The CW has canceled its freshman series Online Nation, which last Sunday (Oct. 14) averaged just 580,000 viewers. Online Nation was a sort of ”best of the Web” show, featuring blogs, videos, sites, and various user-generated content. Starting this Sunday, The CW will instead air repeats of the first-year comedy Aliens in America in Nation‘s 7:30 p.m. slot. The CW has struggled with Sunday nights, last week averaging just a 0.2 rating with its lineup of CW Now, Online Nation, and Life Is Wild. (Variety)

High School Musical‘s Bleu tapped for motocross movie
Corbin Bleu, of High School Musical fame, will star in Rigel Entertainment’s upcoming motocross action movie Metal Birding. He will play a motocross racer who has to juggle his dreams of winning the Amateur National Championships with his duties to support his family. Jeff Woolnough (Taken, Battlestar Galactica) will direct. Bleu will likely return to co-star as Chad Danforth in the third installment of High School Musical, set for release next year, once he completes Birding. (Variety)

Last Rat Pack member Joey Bishop dead at 89
Comedian Joey Bishop, the last surviving member of Frank Sinatra’s Rat Pack, died Wednesday (Oct. 17) night of multiple causes at his home in Newport Beach. He was 89. The Rat Pack appeared at the Las Vegas Sands Hotel in the 1960s in shows that combined music and comedy. Bishop was probably the least famous of the Pack, which also included Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr., though he was known for his one-liners and his catchphrase ”Son of a gun!” In addition to movies with the Rat Pack, including Ocean’s Eleven and Sergeant’s 3, Bishop also starred in two TV series, both called The Joey Bishop Show, in the ’60s. (AP via Yahoo!)

Fox to premiere Terminator TV series in January
Fox is set to premiere its new series Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles on Monday, Jan. 14 at 8 p.m. and will air the show Monday nights alongside 24. The show stars Lena Headey (Aberdeen, 300) as Sarah Connor, who, along with her son John (Thomas Dekker), battle attackers from the future. Fox was set to air the ratings-challenged K-Ville next spring on Mondays at 8 p.m., but the New Orleans-set cop drama has yet to receive a back-nine order, though two additional scripts were recently picked up. (Hollywood Reporter)

Walla’s solo record still due in January following confiscation
Chris Walla, guitarist for Death Cab for Cutie, says he still expects to release his solo album in January even though federal border agents seized a computer hard drive containing the master tracks. A courier was headed to Seattle-based Barsuk Records from a studio in Vancouver, British Columbia, when U.S. Border Patrol agents seized the hard drive Sept. 19. A spokesman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection said he did not have any specifics about Walla’s case, but added that commercial items must be formally imported through the nearby Pacific Highway border point. Walla’s record contains lyrics criticizing the Bush Administration, but the spokesman denied any political motivation behind the incident. Walla himself said he believes the confiscation was simply random. (AP via Yahoo!)

Sci Fi greenlights Revolution pilot
Sci Fi has given the green light to futuristic drama pilot Revolution, which is described as a reinvention of the American Revolution 200 years in the future. The pilot is from writers Ed Redlich and John Bellucci, with Simon West in negotiations to direct. It will shoot in January and if picked up as a series will likely air next summer. “It centers on two multigenerational families related by marriage — a loyalist family and a family that is leaning toward rebellion — and how the impending revolution impacts their lives,” said Redlich, who most recently served as executive producer on CBS’ drama Shark. (Hollywood Reporter)

Simon Baker tapped for Not Forgotten
Simon Baker (The Devil Wears Prada) will star in the indie psychological thriller Not Forgotten, written and directed by Dror Soref. Baker will play a bank manager in a U.S.-Mexico border town haunted by the death of his daughter. He and his wife visit soothsayer to find out what happened to the girl, but the old woman’s visions shake up secrets from their tortured pasts. Production is set to begin in January. Australian actor Baker starred in the title role of the CBS series The Guardian, appeared in the feature Something New, and will next appear in the Daniel Waters film Sex and Death 101. (Hollywood Reporter)


Cindy Adams: In addition to being an actor, Casey Affleck, who stars in brother Ben’s movie Gone Baby Gone, is also a writer and director and is reportedly working with Warner Bros. on a screenplay he penned.

Page Six: Lindsay Lohan’s uncle, Matthew Sullivan, 46, was allegedly caught drunk and in possession of marijuana by Long Island police on Oct. 3 just before 11 p.m.