Actually, before I get to that, it's a full day here, with lots of news that matters to, well, me, and a slew of videos (and even a wild bonus pic) that just made me smile, so let's just get right to it.
The first, and easily most important, news of the day is that Gary Ross, writer/director of "Seabiscuit," "Pleasantville," "Dave" and "Big," among other flicks, has been brought on board to do a rewrite on Sam Raimi's "Spider-Man 4."
Just take a second to think of how great that news can be. What it hopefully means is that, with this rather prestigious filter, Raimi can avoid delivering a turd sandwich that's as bloated and boring as "Spider-Man 3." I was very happy to find with a visit to Boxofficemojo.com that that flick has fallen to #16 on the all-time box office list, so apparently crap does float downward over time.
And, to be fair, Raimi has delivered this year easily the funniest movie I've seen in a theater so far with "Drag Me to Hell," so here's hoping Ross' input can give him a winning streak and a thoroughly entertaining "Spider-Man 4."
OK, moving on quickly from that, it seems that Michael Moore has come up with a title for his new documentary, which I'm certainly looking forward to. Though I thought "Sicko" was mostly just a missed opportunity, I'm fairly confident his new one, to be titled "Capitalism: A Love Story" and be about just how in the world we got into our current economic mess, will be a winner when it finally comes out in October.
And, in a simply fantastic bit of TV news, mystery writer Harlan Coben is soon to apply his talents to the small screen. Though this was pitched in the trades as a new gig for "How I Met Your Mother" executive producer Greg Malins, the news that it springs from the mind of Cohen, as did the simply sublime French thriller "Tell No One" (rent it already if you haven't seen it!), makes this one a lock for my DVR when it finally comes to fruition.
The two will team up to create an hourlong series for Fox about a "larger-than-life" private eye who teaches a college criminology class. Bring it on!
OK, as promised, from here on out it's a lot of videos, and I can pretty much guarantee they're all at least slightly worth watching.
First up comes an oddity from Esquire featuring Mary Louise Parker, who I have to confess I've always just had an inordinate crush on, which was only magnified to the breaking point when she played the feminista Amy Gardner on many episodes of "The West Wing." Here, you might be surprised how thoroughly entertaining it is to watch her simply read a few minutes of Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland." Enjoy.
OK, guys, take a few seconds to recover from that, and next up is a somewhat clever teaser for "Cemetery Junction," the first feature film to be written and directed by "The Office" and "Extras" teammates Stephen Merchant and Ricky Gervais. The running gag about Ralph Fiennes is one I'm sure that anyone whose seen "In Bruges" (and if you haven't, do it already!) knows is a false one, but it's still pretty funny. Enjoy.
And now, one more before we get to the main course, and it also sort of springs from the Apatow camp, since it stars "Freaks and Geeks" vet James Franco. This clip from Funny or Die purports to be Franco's audition tape for the UCLA commencement address, and though it's a little long and liberally riddled with F-bombs, I guarantee it brings the funny, especially when he goes so far as to compare himself to Barack Obama. Enjoy.
OK, finally what was promised at the outset, a second (at least) trailer for Judd Apatow's "Funny People," and be warned that in at least the early part it's rather not safe for work. It does, however, show a lot of stuff not in the first trailer, including a very funny scene with Seth Rogen and the RZA ("OK, I gotta admit, that was humorous.") Enjoy.
And finally, if you actually made it this far, you certainly deserve a reward, and I think this qualifies. It's been far too long since we've seen or heard from Ellen Page, and it certainly looks like "Whip It!" will be a fun return. I love the determined looks on the face of her and Kristen Wiig in this photo from the movie, also featuring director Drew Barrymore. Enjoy, and have a perfectly pleasant Thursday. Peace out.