Christian Camargo, the writer, director and star of new movie Days And Nights, used his family connections to stock the film with all-stars. The Twilight star is married to British thespian Mark Rylance's daughter Juliet, who produced the film with her Tony Award-winning father, and he was thrilled by the names they brought on board.
He tells WENN, "A little nepotism doesn't hurt! It started with a little bit of nepotism, a little bit of friends, and sort of snowballed from there."
But Camargo insists many of the stars who signed up for the film were friends of his that he persuaded to join the cast based on his script: "I worked with Katie (Holmes) before in the play All My Sons - it was her Broadway debut! I was so impressed with what she was capable of doing and her abilities, and felt they were sort of undervalued and underused, so I was really excited to work with her again because she's really good.
"And it was my first film so I needed to really rely on some friends who would be supportive, but, in addition to that, I worked my butt off on this script and I sort of convinced people that it's something that is not done; to have an ensemble movie is just not done very often, so they jumped at the chance to spend 26 days in, like, a theatre camp and just explore."
As well as Holmes, the film also features his wife and father-in-law, Allison Janney, Ben Whishaw, Jean Reno, William Hurt, Cherry Jones and Michael Nyqvist.
Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge has pulled out of an official trip to Malta as she continues to battle severe morning sickness. The pregnant royal had been due to embark on her first solo overseas visit later this week (beg15Sep14), but she has now withdrawn from the engagement due to her condition, known as hyperemesis gravidarum.
Her husband, Prince William, will take the trip in her place.
A statement from royal office Clarence House, posted on Twitter.com, reads, "The Duchess of Cambridge will no longer visit Malta this weekend. The Duke of Cambridge will undertake the visit instead #RoyalVisitMalta... HRH (her royal highness) continues to suffer from hyperemesis gravidarum. The decision was taken on the advice of doctors... The Duke of Cambridge is honoured to represent The Queen on the visit, which commemorates the 50th anniversary of Malta's Independence (sic)."
The news comes after the Duchess pulled out of plans to attend her brother-in-law Prince Harry's 30th birthday party this week (beg15Sep14).
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William are already parents to a son, Prince George, who was born last year (13).
Jim Lo Scalzo/Pool via Bloomberg
British royal Prince Harry rang in his 30th birthday with a black tie dinner party and a performance from pop star Ellie Goulding.
The party took place at Clarence House, the London home of Harry's father Charles, Prince of Wales, on Wednesday (17Sep14) night, two days after he hit the milestone on Monday (15Sep14). The birthday boy drove himself to the venue, while guests were seen arriving in tuxedos and evening gowns. Goulding, who sang at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's wedding, is good friends with Harry and is reported to have performed a number of her hits at the party.
Vanity Fair reports guests dined on Harry's favourite foods - beef wellington and fish pie, with Eton mess for dessert. Prince Charles, who missed the party as he is on vacation in Scotland, is said to have sent crates of Champagne for the soiree. The party was originally planned to take place at Kensington Palace, where Harry lives with his brother Prince William and sister-in-law Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, but was postponed due to the pregnant duchess' severe morning sickness.
The celebrations come amid reports the young prince has reunited with his ex-girlfriend, socialite Cressida Bonas, after they were spotted together on a cinema trip to see Cameron Diaz's new comedy Sex Tape on Tuesday (16Sep14).
Reality TV star-turned-fashion designer Lauren Conrad celebrated her final days as a single lady at a bridal shower at her Los Angeles home this weekend (30-31Aug14).
The former The Hills star is preparing to wed law student graduate William Tell and she followed up her bachelorette party in Mexico in June (14) with another intimate gathering over America's Labor Day holiday weekend as she counts down to her big day.
She shared a series of snaps from the party with fans on Instagram.com, including an image of a napkin printed with the words, "Almost Mrs. Tell", and wrote, "Thank you to my amazing friends and family for the best shower ever!"
The couple announced its engagement last October (13).
British Prime Minister David Cameron's former media adviser Andy Coulson was jailed for 18 months on Friday (04Jul14) for his role in the U.K.'s phone-hacking scandal. Coulson was editor of Rupert Murdoch's British tabloid News of the World from 2003 until 2007, during which several members of staff on the paper routinely tasked a private detective to intercept voicemail messages of the rich and famous.
He had denied any knowledge of the practice under his leadership but was last month (Jun14) convicted of conspiracy to intercept communications.
Rebekah Brooks, former chief executive of Murdoch's News International, was cleared of all charges relating to the scandal.
Victims of the hacking included British Princes William and Harry, Sir Paul McCartney, and actors Jude Law and Sienna Miller. Murdoch closed the News of the World in 2011 at the height of the furore.
British socialite Pippa Middleton felt "embarrassed" by the attention she received for wearing a body-hugging bridesmaid dress on the day her elder sister married Prince William. Kate Middleton became Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge when she married the British royal in London in 2011, and her younger sibling became a sensation as she escorted her sister down the aisle in front of TV viewers across the globe.
Pippa has now given her first TV interview and spoken of the magical wedding which captured the imagination of millions, insisting she had no idea her sister's big day would be such a huge event.
She tells America's Today show, "It sounds funny to say, but we saw it, as just a family wedding. And actually, I didn't realise, perhaps, the scale of it until afterwards. We all took on the the roles as any family would."
Prince William's sister-in-law also admits she felt embarrassed by the attention her now-famous Alexander McQueen bridesmaid dress received, "It was completely unexpected... I think the plan was not really for it to be a significant dress. Really just to sort of blend in with the (wedding dress) train.. (it was) embarrassing, definitely... it wasn't planned."
She adds of the dress, "It's actually still in my wardrobe at home. I haven't worn it since. But I think I'll just keep it there... I think it's the sort of thing that I'm sure I'll bring out if someone wanted to see it or my children one day want to see it. Then I'll show them."
Pippa goes on to reveal she has felt "publicly bullied" when she reads stories about herself which are not true, but she is adamant joining the royal family has not affected her relationship with her sister, insisting, "We spend a lot of time together. We still do a lot together as a family. We have a very normal, sisterly relationship. We're very close."
Two former American Idol contestants have lost a $40 million (£25 million) discrimination lawsuit against MTV. Corey Clark and Jaered Andrews were both disqualified from the reality singing competition in 2003 and filed a lawsuit against the channel and its parent company Viacom for discrimination in 2012.
Andrews and Clark, who infamously claimed he had an affair with then-judge Paula Abdul, sued over how they were characterised by a reporter regarding their disqualification, and Clark cited reports suggesting he was kicked off the show for concealing his various run-ins with the law.
U.S. District Judge William Haynes has now thrown out the case at a court in Tennessee, ruling the media reports are not actionable for libel because they were based on published facts.
Clark also failed in three other attempts to sue MTV, with the judge rejecting claims under the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act and the Personal Rights Protection Act, and an allegation of invasion of privacy.
Clark and Andrews are still pursuing a lawsuit against American Idol bosses, along with eight other singers, arguing they were booted off the show because of their race.
British royals Prince William and Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge have expressed their sadness following the death of Prince Charles' brother-in-law Mark Shand. Travel writer Shand, the sibling of Prince William's stepmother Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, was hospitalised in New York City on Tuesday (22Apr14) after falling and hitting his head on the pavement outside a nightclub.
The 62 year old died from his injuries on Wednesday (23Apr14).
Prince William and his wife heard the sad news as they neared the end of their tour of Australasia, and they passed on their condolences to the Shand family.
The statement from Kensington Palace reads, "The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were saddened to learn this morning of the tragic death of Mark Shand. Their thoughts are with The Duchess of Cornwall and her family at this time."
Warner Bros via Everett Collection
Going back to the earliest days of both movies and television, producers have been enamored with putting sports celebrities on screen. They're some of the most recognizable people in the country and bring along a built-in audience of fans from their athletic exploits.
Of course, there is one issue that's a little hard to get around… most of the athletes that have been tapped to appear in movies can't act. We're taking a look at the most awesomely bad performances by athletes in movies… from ones that are just laughably amateurish to the truly unwatchable; the work by this group would make Lee Strasberg cry.
Shaquille O'Neal, Kazaam
In interviews, O'Neal can be utterly charming and he frequently looks like he's having a good time. Absolutely none of that translates to the big screen, however. The 7-foot-1 basketball player is a genie who emerges from a boombox and tries to help a kid (Francis Capra) who's got father issues. You'd think that a movie with a genie would be at least fun, but it has way too many dark moments and O'Neal's mugging doesn't help any. The movie was so bad that director Paul Michael Glaser hasn't got behind the camera since.
Charles Barkley, Space Jam
It's easy to point out that Michael Jordan is bad in the 1996 mix of animation and live action since he was the star of the show (along with Bugs Bunny, of course), but really, what did we expect? Jordan acted about as well as he ever did in his commercials and the rest of the NBA players, from Larry Bird to Patrick Ewing are equally awful. Barkley, however, as we've now learned from his work as a studio host for TNT has enough personality that he could’ve done better than the stiff performance that he gave.
Dan Marino, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective
It's always amazing when athletes can't even play themselves convincingly. In Jim Carrey's breakout hit, Marino — along with a dolphin — is the subject of a kidnapping scheme. Marino's a good looking guy, but that's about the best thing that we can say about his abilities as an actor. When you're outdone by a sea mammal, things are pretty bad. Of course, as much as we don't like his acting, we still like him better than the movie's Mrs. Finkle, the character who famously said, "Dan Marino should die of gonorrhea and rot in hell."
O.J. Simpson, Capricorn One
Back before the Juice had his troubles with the law, he had quite the acting career. Most people remember his turn as Leslie Nielsen's partner in the Naked Gun series, but at one point, Simpson was legitimately trying to act. That's what puts his turn in Capricorn on the list. Playing a duped astronaut, along with James Brolin and Sam Waterston, who is unwittingly part of a fake mission to Mars, Simpson is all caged fury at the outrage of it all. At least the movie has some pretty rad late '70s hairdos going for it.
Wilt Chamberlain, Conan the Destroyer
At least there was logic to Chamberlain's casting in the rushed sequel to Conan the Barbarian… if you're looking for someone even more physically imposing than Arnold Schwarzenegger, Wilt certainly fits the bill. The towering Chamberlain plays a guard named Bombaata who is supposed to help Conan on a quest before killing him. Let's just say that doesn't work out too well for The Stilt. Considering his claims of prodigious sexual conquests, we're sure that Chamberlain had fun shooting the movie… and, really, he doesn’t look any more ridiculous than Grace Jones.
Dennis Rodman, Double Team
How many people can say that they were in a movie with Jean-Claude Van Damme and they were the worst actor on set? Rodman, at the height of his fame for his outrageous behavior, made the Muscles from Brussels look like Robert De Niro in comparison. The plot of the movie runs along the lines of most other JCVD flicks, with Rodman playing an arms dealer. The Worm is tasked with saying such classic lines as, "You look like trouble. I like trouble." There are a lot of explosions and Van Damme does his requisite butt-kicking, even taking on a tiger, but Rodman spends the movie seemingly smirking at the thought that someone's paying him to do… well, whatever it was he was doing.
Mike Tyson, The Hangover
Yes, The Hangover is a very funny movie and, yes, the scenes with Tyson are hysterical. Those two facts do not make Iron Mike a good actor. The former heavyweight champion just plays a slightly less scary version of himself and you get the impression that the mixture of awe and fear on Bradley Cooper's face wasn't a stretch with the real Tyson standing in front of him. As comical as it was to watch — due largely to Tyson's public persona — his reaction at the video of Zack Galifianakis peeing in his pool is on the level of a third grade school play. Just, um, maybe don't tell him we said so.
Howie Long, Firestorm
The longtime Los Angeles Raiders defensive lineman did a credible job as one of John Travolta's henchmen in the John Woo actioner Broken Arrow. That's where Long's acting career should've ended. Instead, he signed on to play the lead in a movie about the leader of a team of wild firefighters who has to rescue people trapped in a fire started by an escaped killer played by William Forsythe. The fact that someone actually bought that pitch is irrelevant and it's hard to fault Long for taking the payday, but the preposterousness of the plot is matched only by the football star's terrible line delivery. The best part of the movie is that it's mercifully short, clocking in at just 89 minutes.
Terry Bradshaw, Failure to Launch
Let's forget for a second the stretch of casting Bradshaw and Kathy Bates as Matthew McConaughey's parents. Let's even put aside the fact that the movie's awfulness has more to do with the nonexistent chemistry between McConaughey and Sarah Jessica Parker than anything the four-time Super Bowl winner did. The question that truly needs to be addressed is who the heck thought the idea of having Bradshaw naked in the movie was a good idea? God love him for being down for it, but the image of the former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback's naked rear-end is one of those things that you can't unsee. Bradshaw got his start in acting doing cameos in his buddy Burt Reynolds' films and luckily, he doesn't go too far out of his way to get parts. Why people feel the need to occasionally give him one is a whole other question.
Walt Disney Studios
When you think about it, superheroes can be a pretty fickle bunch. Through several decades of comic books and the dozens of comic book films released over the years, it's become abundantly clear that there's no such thing as a binding alliance. Comic book characters switch over the moral dividing line so often that keeping track of it all can be headache-enducing, a fact that one Captain America knows all too well. In the upcoming sequel, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Cap sees himself facing off against an old friend, and in his honor, we've decided to list our favorite comic book movie frienemies.
Harry Osborne and Peter Parker (Spider-Man)High school best buds turned mortal foes, Peter Parker and Harry Osborne are the original frenemies. When Harry discovers that Spider-Man killed his father Norman (the OG Green Goblin), and later finds out that Peter Parker is Spider-Man, the news sets him on a raging path of revenge. Harry picks up the mantle of the Green Goblin and tries to put a stop to the webslinger's heroics once and for all.
Loki and Thor (Thor)Being second sucks, doesn't it? Brothers Thor and Loki were always thick as thieves, but under the surface, certain injustices began to slowly gnaw away at their friendship. Jealousy over Thor's birthright plus the discovery of his true frost-giant origins were enough to send the already mischievous Loki into full villain mode.
Dr. Connors and Peter Parker (The Amazing Spider-Man)Peter Parker and Dr. Connors had a budding Teacher/protege relationship in The Amazing Spider-Man, but Connors was slowly driven crazy by his limb re-growth serum and becomes the Lizard. When the Lizard decides to turn the whole of New York into gigantic reptilian creatures, Spidey had to take the respected scientist down.
Andrew, Matt, and Steve (Chronicle)There's nothing like finding alien superpowers to make a friendship stronger. In Max Landis' Chronicle, Andrew, Matt and Steve bond after accidentally obtaining powers, but Andrew gets consumed by his new found abilities and his terrible home life. After possibly killing Steve, Andrew goes on a rampage through the streets of Seattle, and it's up to Matt to stop him before more people get hurt.
Todd and Dave (Kick-Ass 2)In the sequel to Kick-Ass, the eponymous hero continues to wage his inept war against crime, but when his best friend Todd feels left out of the superheroics, he almost unwittingly becomes a henchmen of Christopher Mintz-Plasse's The Motherfu****, and inadvertantly get's Kick-Ass' father killed. Things between the two are reconciled at the end, but there are some things you probably shouldn't forgive.
Magneto and Professor X (X-Men: First Class)Did I say Harry and Peter were the original frenemies? Nope, that honor clearly goes to Magneto and Professor X. While Erik Lehnsherr and Charles Xavier were originally united in their fight for Mutant rights in the 60's, Professor X sought more peaceful methods, while Magneto was very much an ends-justifies-the-means type of guy, and the two have been at each others throats ever since. They still have mutual respect and affection for one another, but it's buried under years of hate.
Mystique and Professor X (X-Men: First Class)Wait, hold on. Did I say Magneto and Professor X were the original frienemies? Well, according to X-Men: First Class, the good Professor knew Mystique back when they were both children. The two were basically siblings growing up until Raven started to side with Magneto's more forceful ideas about Mutant rights.
Harvey Dent and Bruce Wayne (Batman Forever)Harvey Dent was a by-the-books district attorney that protected Gotham with law and order, while allowing Batman clean up whatever scum slipped out of the court and onto the streets. Their tag-team was broken up when Dent's face was burned by a disgruntled crime boss in the middle of a court proceeding, and Dent is driven insane by his disfigurement, becoming the villain Two Face.
Sabertooth and Wolverine (X-Men Origins: Wolverine)Bound by blood and death, Wolverine and Sabertooth were half-brothers that spent the better part of two centuries fighting through American military conflicts across the globe. After being recruited by William Stryker to join a group of mutant military group called Team X and carrying out some wet work on behalf of the government, Logan leaves the team, feeling dismayed by all of the killing, and Sabertooth sees this as the ultimate betrayal.