The war of words between actor-director Vincent Gallo and film critic Roger Ebert over Gallo's controversial and poorly received Cannes entry The Brown Bunny continues, but perhaps not with negative affect. After most critics panned the film at the fest, Gallo apologized and called his work "a disaster and a waste of time," according to Screen Daily. But back Stateside, Gallo went on the defensive, directing much of his ire towards film critic Roger Ebert and calling him a "fat pig." Ebert responded with, "It is true that I am fat, but one day I will be thin, and he will still be the director of The Brown Bunny." Ironically, though, all the controversy may be just the hook that gets the film a distribution deal. Ryan Werner, theatrical distribution head of Palm Pictures (which has not put out an offer for the film), told The Hollywood Reporter he thinks the film is "self-indulgent," but added, "Without a doubt, someone can release this movie and not spend an exorbitant amount of money."
Doctor Says Jackson Wasn't Faking It
A doctor confirmed that he indeed treated Michael Jackson May 21 in Indianapolis for a suspected anxiety attack the day the singer was to appear at a court-ordered deposition. AP reports Jackson's condition was described in an affidavit provided by Methodist Hospital emergency physician Dallas Peak after a federal judge sought proof of the 44-year-old pop star's illness when he failed to appear to give the deposition in a copyright lawsuit against him. Judge Philip Simon ordered Jackson to return to Indianapolis by June 13 to complete the deposition, and warned he will dock Jackson $1,000 per day for any delays, AP reports.
If your kids get the brilliant idea to set their pet fish free by flushing him down the toilet after seeing the animated film Finding Nemo, you should warn them it won't work. According to the JWC Environmental Company, which manufactures equipment used to process sewage, drainpipes do lead to the ocean but sewage first goes through powerful machines that "shred solids into tiny particles," The Associated Press reports. "In truth, no one would ever find Nemo and the movie would be called Grinding Nemo," the company told AP.
Maguire's Yo-Yo Diets
Tobey Maguire admitted to MTV News he has had to alter his diet in the last few years for the roles he has played. The actor bulked up to play the comic book webslinger in Spider-Man, then had to slim down for his role as a jockey in the upcoming Seabiscuit only to bulk up again for the Spidey sequel. "I'm a vegetarian," AP reports Maguire told MTV News. "It can be a little tedious sometimes. You're eating more than you'd like to eat or you're not working out as much as you'd like. But it's fine."
Costner's Buffalo Sculpture To Get Public Display
A 17-piece sculpture commissioned by actor-director Kevin Costner nine years ago is finally getting its public debut in South Dakota, AP reports. Known as "Tatanka--The Story of the Bison," the sculpture, created by artist Peggy Detmers, shows three Lakota hunters driving 14 buffalo over a cliff and will be the centerpiece to a $5 million tourist attraction, giving the history of the proud American Indian culture.
Luther Vandross' New Album Released
Plans are being made to release Luther Vandross' album Dance With My Father--without any publicity. The 52-year-old R&B singer finished recording the album before a debilitating stroke April 16 left him semi-conscious, AP reports. "We're just in effect releasing the music; the rest will take care of itself," J Records label founder Clive Davis, a legendary music mogul, told AP. "I think the music will tell its own story."
Role Call: Rick Schroeder Under Black Cloud, Jack Black is Rad
Former NYPD Blue Rick Schroeder will make his directing debut with the film Black Cloud, which will also star country singing legend Tim McGraw in his acting debut. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film is an inspirational story about a Native American boxer facing personal challenges as he comes to terms with his heritage while fighting his way to a spot on the U.S. Olympic boxing team. McGraw will play a sheriff…Meanwhile, funny guy Jack Black is looking to produce and star in Rad Brad, Modern Warrior about the world's greatest video game player recruited to save the world from a rogue military faction that has developed a robot with superhuman destructive powers. That's got to be good.