The former Magnum, P.I. star established his reputation as a great horseman while riding Spike in the films and he couldn't bear to leave Australia without his favourite steed.
He tells American Cowboy magazine, "I've become a pretty established ride, but there's nothing like a good horse."
Selleck admits he tried to buy Spike from his handlers after completing the two films - and they decided to let the actor have the Quarter horse as a gift.
He recalls, "It was an enormous sign of respect. I was very touched. But then I found out it would cost me about $7,000 to fly him here (to California) from Australia. He's been in my barn ever since."
And Selleck has never stopped riding - he has a collection of horses on his Ventura County ranch.
Spike is now in his mid-twenties.
The 21 year old has been riding on her parents' California ranch since she was three and now the former Magnum, P.I. star, an accomplished Hollywood horseman, is championing her Olympic aspirations - even though he's well aware only four people can represent the U.S. in her competition.
He tells American Cowboy magazine, "Making the Olympic team is a tough row to hoe. The team is only four people.
"She's good enough, but I'm her dad... She's earned it."
First Freddy Krueger.
Then the Headless Horseman.
Now Jack the Ripper.
Johnny Depp enjoys staring evil straight in the face. A pre-21 Jump Street Depp made his film debut in A Nightmare on Elm Street. Partnering with director Tim Burton for the third time, Depp took a nightmarish trip to Sleepy Hollow and came away with a $101 million hit for Ichabod Crane's halfhearted heroics.
For From Hell, Depp travels from 18th-century New York State to 19th-century London to track down the world's first and most infamous serial killer. Based on the seminal graphic novel by Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell, this opium-fueled, blood-soaked conspiracy shocker builds upon the theory that British royalty had a hand in the grisly murders of five prostitutes.
The Hughes brothers, responsible for Menace II Society and Dead Presidents, leave behind the mean streets of urban America for the dark and murky alleyways of Victorian London. Most of the violence might be implied, but there's enough gore in this overwrought chiller to turn off those who found Sleepy Hollow dark but fun. Also, Depp's attempt to out-Cockney Michael Caine might annoy audiences in general.
Consequently, Sleepy Hollow should remain in place as the sole Depp-headlined film to break $100 million. From Hell's opening weekend, though, should surpass the total grosses of his other recent but disastrous excursions into terror, The Astronaut's Wife ($10.6 million) and The Ninth Gate ($18.6 million). Also, From Hell should entice a pre-Halloween crowd eager for a bloody good time but unwilling to wait for next week's Bones and 13 Ghosts. All in all, From Hell should cap off a profitable year for Depp, which saw Chocolat earn a sweet $70 million and Blow breeze by $55 million.
While Depp faces an ancient evil, Robert Redford takes on the military.
The Last Castle marks the aging icon's first onscreen appearance since 1998's sugary and longwinded The Horse Whisperer. Court-martialed general Redford stares down military prison warden James Gandolfini in this political drama directed by Rod Lurie.
But can Redford still command our attention?
The Horse Whisperer, which Redford also directed, galloped to $75.3 million. Before that, 1996's Up Close and Personal made $51 million and 1993's Indecent Proposal earned $106 million. Yet these films romantically paired Redford with beautiful women half his age, thereby attracting his loyal female following. Women aren't likely to swoon at the prospect of Redford doing hard time with a bunch of tattooed murderers, thieves and drug smugglers. In its favor, The Last Castle does feature Redford's best performance since The Natural. Its pro-military stance also seems in sync with the mood of the day.
If anything, The Last Castle should serve as a teaser for next month's Spy Game, which reunites Redford with his A River Runs Through It star Brad Pitt.
Lurie, a former film critic turned director, has yet to thrill audiences with his treatises on war and politics. His debut, 1999's Deterrence, barely made only $144,000 in limited release. Last year's The Contender was anything but, earning only $17.8 million, which The Last Castle should easily outpace.
Somewhere amid this hearty display of machismo lies Drew Barrymore. She tests her appeal this weekend by departing from the frothy comedies and adventures--Charlie's Angels, Never Been Kissed, Ever After, The Wedding Singer--that have made her an almost guaranteed box office draw. The fact-based drama Riding in Cars with Boys sees Barrymore stretch as a teenage single mom trying to get her life back in order.
Barrymore's struggles may come as a welcome relief to those not in the mood for slain prostitutes and incarcerated ex-soldiers, but terrible reviews could instead drive audiences straight to the sweet Serendipity. Also, Barrymore's previous attempt to portray an unwed mother-to-be turned out to be a Thanksgiving turkey: Home Fries earned just $10.5 million in November 1998.
Director Penny Marshall needs a hit to reverse her box office slump. Renaissance Man made $24.1 million in 1994. The Preacher's Wife sang up a less-than-soulful $48.1 million during Christmas 1996.
David Lynch's latest conundrum, Mulholland Drive, expands this weekend after landing in the No. 14 spot with a lukewarm $587,000 at 66 theaters. Reworked after being rejected as an ABC pilot, this murder mystery may entice Twin Peaks aficionados eager for another Lynch-ian excursion into film noir. Unfortunately, Lynch makes plenty of twists and turns, but never takes his audiences far enough to make this a journey worth undertaking. A couple of lesbian love scenes might generate some interest, but Mulholland Drive will end up enduring the same fate as Lynch's equally perplexing and infuriating Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me and Lost Highway. The former made only $4.1 million in 1992, failing to capitalize on the TV series' cult following. The latter made do with $3.8 million in 1997.
The arrival of From Hell should see reigning champ Training Day take a tumble. Not that Denzel Washington needs to worry. With $46.9 million in takings through Wednesday, the gritty thriller already ranks as one of Washington's biggest hits. By the end of the weekend, Training Day will surpass The Hurricane ($50.6 million), Malcolm X ($48.1 million) and The Preacher's Wife ($48.1 million). Training Day also looks certain to make more than The Bone Collector ($66.5 million) and Courage Under Fire ($59 million).
Bruce Willis is obviously hoping that last weekend's anthrax scare in New York was what kept audiences away from Bandits. That was the reason offered by MGM as to why the well-reviewed heist yarn failed to topple Training Day. Bandits opened with $13 million--par for Willis' recent comedies--and has made off with $15.7 million through Wednesday. At this pace, Bandits could match the $57.2 million that The Whole Nine Yards earned in 1999.
Not even the worst reviews of the year deterred audiences from watching Saturday Night Live's Chris Kattan pose as a FBI agent. Having collared $10.3 million through Wednesday, Corky Romano should enjoy a profitable second weekend given that interest is fading in Ben Stiller's fashion satire Zoolander ($36.5 million through Wednesday).
Also winding down is the Michael Douglas thriller Don't Say a Word (an OK $43.1 million through Wednesday) and the Anthony Hopkins supernatural coming-of-age tale Hearts in Atlantis (a disappointing $21.2 million through Wednesday).
Serendipity should continue to lure couples, especially given Riding in Cars with Boys' negative reviews. The John Cusack-Kate Beckinsale New York love story has romanced its way to $28.2 million through Wednesday, having already surpassed the $27.2 million made last year by Cusack's somewhat more jaded take on life and love, High Fidelity.
Iron Monkey dropkicked its way to $7.1 million through Wednesday, after enjoying a $6 million opening. Though unlikely to repeat the success of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, this 1993 classic bowed better than any reissued Jackie Chan adventure. The subtitled Iron Monkey, certain to lose audiences to From Hell, should manage to equal or exceed the $16.2 million that Chan's Supercop arrested in 1996. Let's hope that Iron Monkey's triumph will end the practice of reissuing Chan's classics in their annoyingly dubbed versions.
Stephen King made his bazillions from book sales and movie rights. So, why's he suddenly gotten so cheap when it comes to paper? "Riding the Bullet" In case you haven't heard, "Riding the Bullet," King's first new material since he was hit by a van and nearly killed last year, was published today. We use the term "published" liberally -- more specifically, it was dispensed over the Internet as a downloadable-but-not-printable file, available for $2.50 per download to users of PCs and Palm Pilots (sorry, Mac aficionados, yer screwed again).
And after reading the 66-page thing (which is really a short story, not a novella as it's been billed), you might come to the following conclusions: (a) Stephen King's not as scary as he used to be; and (b) curling up with your laptop isn't as comfy as it is with a dog-eared paperback.
"I found the inability to simply print 'Riding the Bullet,' even though I paid for it, was a great disappointment," says David Rawsthorne, webmaster of Horrorking's Stephen King Web site (www.horrorking.com). "I hate reading more than I have to on the computer and do not own one of the new handheld book readers to allow me to sit on the lounge and read in comfort.
"At a tiny 16,000 words, the price was also quite high. To compare it with a real hardcover, it is like paying $25 for 'The Dead Zone' with its 152,000 words, and with no first-edition binding, hard cover, graphics work on the cover, and the risk that a simple virus, hard disk drive failure, etc. will ultimately cause you to lose the book forever."
A new Stephen King book (or story) is big news -- especially when you consider that the author of "Misery," "The Green Mile," "Carrie" and more than 30 other horror novels said last year that his brush with death (he suffered a collapsed lung and multiple fractures to his right leg and hip in the June mishap) had left him unable to write.
But the folks at Simon & Schuster, who are co-publishing "Riding the Bullet" with King's own company, are getting a lot of mileage out of the fact that this is the first-ever "e-book" from a major author. Even though no trees were killed in the making of King's latest missive, a lot of newsprint and air time is being devoted to it, including a segment on NBC's "Today" show.
A spokesman for the publisher tells Hollywood.com that it's not yet known how many people will download the book over the next few days. Both Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble Online, which offered "Ride the Bullet" downloads free today (they'll start charging Wednesday), were swamped. (Barnes & Noble Online sent out an apologetic e-mail to hopeful readers, promising to deliver the book as soon as "issues of capacity" are resolved). Meanwhile, the book is also available from six other, nongratis e-book vendors, which were also difficult to access.
"I was extremely disappointed in the entire process," says Steve Stinnett, who runs a Stephen King fan Web site (www.utopianweb.com/king). Stinnett says he spent "nearly half the night" trying to get through to a server to download the book.
"Fans from across the world are unhappy and suffering because these companies failed to plan and expect an enormous response in the first hours of the release," Stinnett says.
So, what's the deal? Has Stephen King suddenly become an e-cologist? Or is "Ride the Bullet" simply a tuneup effort by a writer who's on the mend? A minor work that's being hyped by greedy Internet capitalists?
You asked, we tell:
"Ride the Bullet" is a story about a college student who gets a phone call from home, telling him his mother has been hospitalized after a stroke. The student hitchhikes home from the University of Maine. Along the way, he's picked up by a Headless Horseman-like character (except with a sewn-on severed head), who makes the kid re-examine his beliefs about life and death, love and family, this and that. (The title, by the way, refers to a notorious rollercoaster called “The Bullet,” which the protagonist was too chicken to ride in his youth.)
Like other Stephen King stuff, there is the usual assortment of oddball characters (an old man whose car interior smells like urine, and who keeps tugging at his hernia truss), brand-name references, and a protagonist who isn't sure what to make of life just yet.
So, is it any good?
It's scary, but it ain't no "Carrie."
By way of a second opinion, webmaster Rawsthorne offers this: "'Riding the Bullet' is a short story, and like most short stories, it is hard to develop the characters in a way that allows a link between the reader and them, getting the reader more involved and engrossed in the story."
That, and you can't stick a bookmark in it.
A depiction of early twentieth-century English country life as seen through the eyes of Paul Craddock, a former Navy lieutenant who purchases Shallowford Oaks, a financially troubled estate in Devon Valley, England. His attempts to rebuild the estate and make it profitable again is the focal point of the program. Based on the 1966 novel by R.F. Delderfield.