George Takei Beams into NBC's Heroes
From Carol Burnett on Mad About You to Dixie Carter on Desperate Housewives, nothing livens up a series like the addition of a TV giant. This time, Heroes - one of the only new TV shows to rouse the attention of the ever-shrinking network audience - has announced the casting of openly gay Star Trek veteran George Takei as the father of time-bender Hiro (Masi Oka). The fact that Hiro is himself a Trek fanboy just makes the casting all the more delicious. Coming out seems to have done wonders for Takei's career - he's also wrapped The Great Buck Howard with Tom Hanks, and is the announcer on Howard Stern's Sirius satellite radio show. No date has yet been set for Takei's premiere on Heroes, but look for the Internet to be ablaze with Trek-geek excitement.
Gina Gershon Brings Creepy Back
She titillated you as a lesbian thief in Bound and as a bisexual Vegas star in Showgirls - now get ready for Gina Gershon, children's book author. She and her brother Dann have penned Camp Creepy Time, a soon-to-be-published book that's already getting Hollywood's attention. DreamWorks and Nick Movies have expressed interest in the Gershons' tale of a 13-year-old boy who has to rescue his fellow summer campers when he realizes everyone on the staff is an extraterrestrial. Slated to write and possibly direct is Richard LaGravenese, who wrote and directed the lovely and little-seen Living Out Loud, and wrote The Fisher King, as well as holiday fave The Ref. No date yet for the flick, but Romeo can't wait - after all, Gershon's no stranger to Camp.
Xanadu Will Skate Again Off-Broadway
As if musical theater wasn't gay enough, we now have a stage version of the queer cult classic Xanadu to look forward to. Boasting a book by gay playwright Douglas Carter Beane (The Little Dog Laughed), Xanadu will have four invitation-only workshop performances in New York City in January before a proposed spring run off-Broadway. If you haven't seen the movie, turn in your gay card - the musical tells the story of Terpsichore, one of the seven mythological Muses, who comes to Earth as a young woman named Kira. There she inspires an artist and an aging jazz musician to open Xanadu, a spectacular roller-disco palace. If the show's a hit, look for peasant blouses, roller skates, and feathered hair to hit the mainstream again.
Logo Hangs 10 with Curl Girls
There's more to lesbian sports than softball; if you live anywhere near an ocean, you're probably aware of the growing phenomenon of out-and-proud dyke surfers. Now queer cable channel Logo will be bringing us an endless sapphic summer with the new reality series Curl Girls, focusing on a sextet of Southern California women who share a love for surfing even though their careers and temperaments are totally different. Based on a Logo documentary that aired to great success in 2005, the six-part series follows its subjects throughout the summer of 2006, as competition flourishes, new relationships are forged, and old ones are broken. The network says post-production will last through the end of the year, so get ready to ride the Curl sometime in 2007.
Romeo San Vicente can't handle a longboard, but he's seen every movie Annette Funicello ever made. He can be reached care of this publication or at DeepInsideHollywood@qsyndicate.com.