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July 13, 2007
V 35 Issue 28

 
 
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Deep Inside Hollywood
Deep Inside Hollywood
Deep Inside Hollywood by Romeo San Vicente - SGN A&E Writer

PORTIA PLAYS ONE ON TV
With straight actors winning Oscars and critical acclaim for taking on gay roles, it's harder these days for gay and lesbian performers to get those plum queer parts. But thankfully, the hetero glory-hogs haven't scarfed up all the good stuff. Portia de Rossi, who's been happily and openly involved with Ellen DeGeneres for several years now, has just signed on for her first lesbian role, in the upcoming season of the frequently gay-inclusive Nip/Tuck. De Rossi will have recurring appearances as the manipulative mom of a teen girl who wants to get plastic surgery. Fans of de Rossi who have missed her glamorous presence since the cancellation of Arrested Development can look forward to catching her on Nip/Tuck's upcoming fifth season.

MAPPLETHORPE STILL MAKES WAVES
Robert Mapplethorpe passed away from AIDS complications in 1987, but his landmark photography - much of it explicit in its homoeroticism - continues to make waves in the art world two decades later. A new documentary, Black White + Gray: A Portrait of Sam Wagstaff & Robert Mapplethorpe, examines the artist's life and career, as well as his relationship with art collector Wagstaff, who was Mapplethorpe's lover and who helped to establish a market for photography as fine art. Director James Crump features not only those iconic Mapplethorpe photographs but also interviews with the photographer's close friends, rock icon Patti Smith and writer Dominick Dunne. Black White + Gray will be released both theatrically (via Arthouse Films) and on cable (Sundance Channel) before the end of the year.

MIIKE'S BIG BANG
Fans of contemporary Japanese cinema know prolific filmmaker Takashi Miike principally as the director of terrifying horror flicks and hard-bitten gangster epics. But he enjoys defying his fans' expectations - for example, when he decided to make the bizarre musical The Happiness of the Katakuris. Now he's going even further afield with his first gay movie, Big Bang Love, Juvenile A. Based on a popular graphic novel, the film centers around two beautiful young men who meet in jail while serving time for unrelated murders. In telling their love story, Miike takes a decidedly nonlinear approach that involves everything from dance to anime. No word yet on a U.S. theatrical release for Big Bang Love, but it's going to be screening at gay and lesbian film festivals nationwide throughout the rest of the year.

DREAMGIRLS GOES TO DUBAI
Romeo generally likes to cover entertainment topics specifically relevant to his readers in the United States, but sometimes things happen overseas that just can't be ignored. Paramount recently announced a deal to build a $2.5 billion theme park in the city of Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates. Part of the studio's deal will be to allow branding opportunities for rides and attractions based on Paramount intellectual properties like Top Gun, Grease, Mission: Impossible, Titanic, The Godfather, and... Dreamgirls. Now, Top Gun, Titanic, and Grease are plenty gay(ish). But Dreamgirls sets the mind reeling - "Beyonce's Bumper Cars"? "Effie's Dessert Pavilion"? No opening date has been set, but how ironic will it be that a country where homosexuality is illegal may wind up hosting one of the world's gayest theme-park attractions?

Romeo San Vicente is telling you that he is not going to Dubai. He can be reached care of this publication or at DeepInsideHollywood@qsyndicate.com.

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