Goodbye, Hollywood. Hello, Peace Corps!

Angelina Jolie is to blame, really. Because of something she said to me in India four years ago, I have quit my 13-year career as an entertainment journalist, have given away almost everything I own, and at 43, have joined the Peace Corps.

Talk Transcript: Sean Smith on Angelina Jolie

"A Mighty Heart," starring Angelina Jolie, is based on the best-selling book by Mariane Pearl about the murder of her husband, Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, by Al Qaeda members in Karachi, Pakistan, in early 2002.

Homer Simpson's Big-Screen Odyssey

To make it on the big screen, you have to give people something spectacular. Something extraordinary. Something like Bart Simpson—full frontal. It happens early in "The Simpsons Movie," when the animated 10-year-old takes a dare from his goofball father, Homer, to skateboard naked through the streets of Springfield.

Homer Simpson's Big-Screen Odyssey

To make it on the big screen, you have to give people something spectacular. Something extraordinary. Something like Bart Simpson—full frontal. It happens early in "The Simpsons Movie," when the animated 10-year-old takes a dare from his goofball father, Homer, to skateboard naked through the streets of Springfield.

Now, Watch Very Carefully

Even obsessive "Harry Potter" fans don't seem to have noticed that Hogwarts has had a makeover from the first two films. "As you approach, the Great Hall and the tower housing Professor Dumbledore's office are off to the left, and there's a viaduct connecting them to a series of buildings on the right," says Oscar-winning art director Stuart Craig, who has designed all five "Potter" movies, including this summer's "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix." "If you look to the right of that...

Hollywood Royalty

Security was tight. For the first time, NEWSWEEK'S annual roundtable was held in public, at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood. We made sure to keep a few of the celebrities' names secret, and arranged for all of them to arrive via an inconspicuous side entrance to the theater.

James Cameron Back in Action

It has been 10 years since "Titanic" grossed $1.8 billion worldwide and earned a record 11 Oscars. Writer-Director James Cameron hasn't made a feature film since.

Steven Spielberg and Mark Burnett

The most-anticipated new reality show of next year was conceived in Steven Spielberg's backyard. In early 2006, the Oscar-winning director was at his Los Angeles home chatting with Mark Burnett, the creator of "Survivor" and "The Apprentice." The topic was not television, but a movie they'd like to make together.

Movies: Who's That Guy With Harry Potter?

Mention the name of the new "Harry Potter" director and the near-universal response is, "Who?" After creating a $3.5 billion franchise with a string of high-profile filmmakers--Chris Columbus, Alfonso Cuarón and Mike Newell--Warner Bros.

Rocky's Final Round

Boy, did I get a beating," says Sylvester Stallone, sitting in the living room of his Italian-style villa high above Beverly Hills. A year ago the 60-year-old actor was in the ring being pummeled by a 37-year-old professional boxer for the climactic scene of "Rocky Balboa," the sixth and final installment of the franchise that launched Stallone's career.

Living the Dream

When Oprah Winfrey phoned the hotel room, Jennifer Hudson refused to take the call. "Tell her I'm not talking," Hudson told her makeup artist, who had answered the phone.

Living the Dream

When Oprah Winfrey phoned the hotel room, Jennifer Hudson refused to take the call. "Tell her I'm not talking," Hudson told her makeup artist, who had answered the phone.

Holy Hollywood

"The Nativity Story," a new movie that tells the narrative of the birth of Jesus Christ, won't be in theaters until December, but Anne Graham Lotz has already seen it.

Stars: Revealing the Whole Harry Potter

Before you see Harry Potter on screen next summer, you'll be able to see him naked onstage in London. Daniel Radcliffe, 17-year-old star of the "Potter" franchise, will make his West End debut next year in the Tony-winning drama "Equus." The role--a troubled young man with a religious-erotic obsession with horses--requires Radcliffe to be nude for one scene.

Being Bening

Annette Bening is a picture of poise and reserve. She's warm, yes, but not one to use an interview as therapy. She'll chat forever about the brilliance of Maggie Smith or Frances McDormand, ask about the state of the media or discuss a novel, but questions about, say, why she's drawn to certain characters elicit polite deflections.

Newsmakers

Mel Gibson had a miserable week. Arrested early on July 28 for driving drunk--he was doing more than 85mph in a 45mph zone in Malibu, Calif., with an open bottle of tequila in the car--the star ranted to police, "F---ing Jews . . .

The Mice That Roared

They weren't exactly Hollywood's idea of a power couple: Disney CEO Robert Iger, once derided as a "suit," and stu-dio chief Richard Cook, who got his start as a monorail operator at Disneyland.

A Flying Leap

two years ago Bryan Singer walked away from the "X-Men" franchise he had created to direct "Superman Returns." Good call. Early reviews, including NEWSWEEK's, have been raves.

A Pirate's Life

He wasn't looking for superstardom, so superstardom came looking for him. Johnny Depp on family, 'Pirates of the Caribbean 2'--and how he got a chest of gold without selling his soul.

The Girl Can't Help It

Celeb-baiting comedian Kathy Griffin, whose show 'My Life on the D-List' returns this month, has a foul mouth and a bad attitude. And it's made her a star.

Mission: Impossible III: Who's Smiling Now?

Hollywood celebrated the lackluster opening of "Mission: Impossible III" by dancing on Tom Cruise's grave. "There's a certain part of this town that loves to watch somebody self-destruct," said one film-industry exec, who, like others in the business, makes it a policy not to criticize anyone publicly. "People were rooting against that movie.

A Dash of Fresh 'Pepper'

Actors can be fans, too, and they're not above lifting a memento--a prop, a costume--from the set once filming is over. When she finished her third "X-Men" movie, Rebecca Romijn walked off with an unusual keepsake: a bottle of blue paint.

A Dark Day Revisited

If movie trailers are supposed to cause a reaction, the preview for "United 93" more than succeeds. Featuring no voice-over and no famous actors, it begins with images of a beautiful morning and passengers boarding an airplane.

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