News Roundup: Jan. 22


Top Story

Singer/songwriter Sting will headline the opening ceremonies for the Salt Lake City Olympics. He’ll be sharing center stage with the Dixie Chicks, LeAnn Rimes and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Now, that’s a line up.

Olympic organizers have sold 44,000 tickets to the event so far and have only 450 tickets left. They will also shut down their eBay Internet auction of prime tickets on Thursday. This is the first Olympic event to sell tickets on the Internet this way, and the effort has raised more than $1 million.

In General

Actor Jim Caviezel (The Count of Monte Cristo), a devout Roman Catholic, prefers to keep things clean and simple when filming love scenes in his movies. The leading man of Angel Eyes told that he asked his co-star Jennifer Lopez to keep her top on during their premarital lovemaking “out of devotion, love and respect to my wife.” Wonder if J.Lo put up a fight? reports that a story broke yesterday on the Internet claiming that DreamWorks is behind the currently circulating rumors that Miramax is talking trash to the press about Universal’s Oscar contender A Beautiful Mind. Whew. Ironically, DreamWorks actually owns the foreign distribution rights to the film. “If the accusation is true, we’d be hugely disappointed,” a Miramax spokesperson said, “but, at this time of year, these kind of rumors abound.”

Get ready, folks! Looks like there’s going to be a fourth Indiana Jones film. Director Steven Spielberg confirmed that he and star Harrison Ford have found the right script and will be starting pre-production once Spielberg finishes his DreamWorks’ project Catch Me If You Can starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks.

ABC’s Alias star and recent Golden Globe winner Jennifer Garner may be playing the comic book hero Elektra in a new movie Daredevil, also starring Ben Affleck. She said Sunday after the Globes, “I don’t know if you saw Ben Affleck tonight, but he’s looking pretty handsome. So that’s a good proposition.”

Director Roman Polanski (Rosemary’s Baby, Chinatown) is getting some screen time–in front of the cameras. He is set to star in veteran Polish filmmaker Andrzej Wajda‘s film The Revenge, based on a play by Aleksander Fredro.

Last summer’s scary movie Jeepers Creepers, which has earned about $50 million in worldwide box office so far, is getting a much-deserved sequel (not). Tentatively titled Like a Bat Out of Hell: Jeepers Creepers 2, the monster Creeper will come back and feed on a busload of basketball players and cheerleaders. Yuck. The film should be released sometime in 2003.

Miramax’s comedy Amélie has become the high-grossing French-language film ever released in North America. The film has raked in $20.9 million so far in domestic box office grosses, overtaking the previous record-holder La cage aux folles, which took in $20.4 million in 1979.

The Russian government pulled the plug on the country’s only nationwide television station, TV6, on Tuesday. The station was on shaky ground, according to Reuters, “after a pension fund holding a minority stake and linked to Russia’s biggest oil producer LUKOIL won a court case to close the station because of irregularities with its charter capital.”

On the heels of catching this century’s new madman Osama bin Laden, CBS is developing a four-hour miniseries on one the original evil dictators–Adolf Hitler. The film will explore Hitler’s life as a young man and his rise to power in the Third Reich. Canadian company Alliance Atlantis is producing the project, which should air sometime in the 2002-03 season.

All 10 candidates in the Screen Actors Guild national elections have agreed to run again after the SAG election committee threw out last November’s results due to procedural violations by union staff and polling administrators. New ballots will be sent out March 15.