The Thorpedo has sunk one of his own. After a false-start disqualification at Australia's Olympic trials in March, swimming phenom Ian Thorpe, who won three gold medals at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, appeared to be foiled in his quest to defend his victory in the 400-meter freestyle, his best event, at the Athens Games in August.
The late Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain once said of "Smells Like Teen Spirit," the most famous song he ever wrote, "Basically, I was trying to rip off the Pixies." A few months after Cobain copped to the theft, the Pixies broke up. (Blew apart is more like it: frontman Black Francis, a.k.a.
If it's March, it must be college-hoops time--that manic moment in the year when grown men blow an entire day of work poring over a single piece of paper covered with words like "Zona," "GaTech" and "Mizzou." Last year's NCAA tournament foiled even the sharpest prognosticators because a single player, Syracuse freshman phenom Carmelo Anthony, carried his team to the title.
Now here's a reality show we never saw coming. "Straight Plan for the Gay Man" is Comedy Central's cute, role-reversing spoof of Bravo's makeover hit, and there's one other major change: "Queer Eye" has five experts, while "Straight Plan" makes do with four.
In case you haven't caught the latest efforts by the participants in our round table, here's what you're missing. And if you're really behind, a brief biography of each director.'The Return of the King': In the dazzling, impassioned finale of the Middle-earth trilogy, the reluctant leader Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) rises to confront a final assault by Sauron's evil army, while a pair of hobbits, Frodo and Sam (Elijah Wood and Sean Astin), continue their quest to destroy an all-powerful ring.
So the "Blair Witch" directors got some actors lost in the woods and made creepy noises around their campsite. Big deal. In the history of "I dare you" filmmaking, it's possible that no movie has approached the insanity of writer-director Chris Kentis's 2004 Sundance Film Festival entry, "Open Water," about a scuba-diving couple stranded in shark-infested waters after their chartered boat leaves without them.
In November 2002, after spending four days with the main "Matrix" team in Los Angeles and two more with its visual effects crew in Alameda, Calif., I wrote a story for NEWSWEEK's Who's Next special report that marveled at the potential greatness of the forthcoming sequels, "The Matrix Reloaded" and "The Matrix Revolutions." I didn't actually view either of the entire films--it was too early for that, but I hung out with the costume designer, the production designer, the special-effects...
Paola AntonelliCURATOR, MUSEUM OF MODERN ARTHer criterion is simple: "I try to decide," says Paola Antonelli, curator of architecture and design at New York's MoMA, "whether the space an object occupies on Earth is well used." If that sounds like a high bar to clear, just look at what Antonelli is holding.
For years, music-video directors have gotten a bum rap--they're all flash, no substance, and they grow up to become lousy movie directors. The trouble is, almost every truly innovative filmmaker these days breaks into the biz with music videos, so the rap is a bit like slagging a butterfly for starting out as a caterpillar.
Back in January, Patricia Clarkson got to be queen for a day. Actually, for about six days. At the 2003 Sundance Film Festival, Clarkson starred in just about every good movie in competition (OK, four), won a special jury prize for her work and spent the week as the toast of Park City, Utah.
Hey, Jack. Jack!" A woman with a baby stroller is trying to get Jack Black's attention as he waits in line at a midtown Manhattan burger joint. "I've got a blast from the past for you," she says as he wheels around. "OK," he answers. "Hit me." The woman tosses out the name of someone Black apparently knew in high school. "No way," Black says. "Wow.
CBS's spiritually inclined new show "Joan of Arcadia" ponders the same theological conundrum raised by the noted pop philosopher Joan Osborne in her 1995 hit song "What If God Was One of Us?" Osborne's tune is the theme music for the show and, it would appear, the blueprint for the entire story.
Project GreenhornsIt's a measure of Matt Damon's and Ben Affleck's celebrity that these best-friends-4-ever can make news without doing anything. The hottest play in New York now is an off-off-off Broadway production called "Matt & Ben," a spoof set in 1995, when they were struggling actors living in Boston.
By now, it's no great revelation to say that the 9/11 effect--the term we used in those sensitive months after the attacks to describe all the shifts we anticipated in our lives and our thinking--never really happened, at least not in the world of mainstream film.We believed, briefly, that movies were going to be less frivolous.
Late one night about a year ago, Jamie Lee Curtis was falling asleep when the phone startled her. It was her agent calling. Just days before shooting, he told her, Annette Bening had to drop out of Disney's forthcoming remake of the 1976 body-swapping classic "Freaky Friday." "Oh, and now I suppose they're offering it to me?" Curtis asked, rolling her eyes.