Pulitzer Prize-winning gay author Michael Cunningham will reunite with Meryl Streep and Toni Collette who starred in the screen version of his acclaimed novel “The Hours” for “Evening,” a film based on the book by Susan Minot.
Cunningham is penning the script for the film, which stars Vanessa Redgrave as a woman dying of cancer who wants to let her daughters know about the importance of her life’s defining moments.
The extraordinary cast also includes Patrick Wilson (who played the hunky gay Mormon in “Angels in America”), Glenn Close, Claire Danes, Hugh Dancy and Redgrave and Streep’s real-life respective daughters, Natasha Richardson and Mamie Gummer.
Director Lajos Koltai is currently shooting the film in Rhode Island for Focus Features, no doubt with one eye firmly placed on the 2007 Oscar race.
Blanchett dresses up “‘Cancer Vixen’
Marisa Acocella Marchetto’s graphic memoir, “Cancer Vixen: A True Story,” is one of the season’s hottest books, and there’s already a film version in the mix.
Oscar winner Cate Blanchett will play “Glamour” and “New Yorker” fashionista and cartoonist Marchetto, whose plans to marry a celebrity restauranteur were wrenched when she was diagnosed with breast cancer just three weeks before the wedding. Her pals rallied around her and made sure she wore the most fabulous shoes possible to her chemo treatments.
Given that Marchetto’s support group was made up of designers, gossip columnists and stylists, look for “Cancer Vixen” to bring lots of “Devil Wears Prada”-style gay atmosphere when the movie hits theaters next year.
Jake’s back, and Reese has him
The gay community’s cards, letters, and candlelight vigils have paid off Jake Gyllenhaal has finally committed to making a new movie.
Gyllenhaal’s signing to star in “Rendition” marks his first deal since earning an Academy Award nomination for his performance as heartsick gay rodeo cowboy Jack Twist in “Brokeback Mountain.”
Gyllenhaal will pair up with another gay fave, Reese Witherspoon, in this new thriller about a Cairo-based CIA analyst (Gyllenhaal) who begins to question his life after watching the Egyptian secret police interrogate a suspect.
Witherspoon plays the agent’s pregnant wife in director Gavin Hood’s follow-up to his Oscar-winning “Tsotsi.”
Shooting gets rolling in November and will take place in such varied locales as L.A., Washington D.C., Morocco and South Africa.
Pitt has “’4 oz.’ in his palm
Gay writer-director-producer Ryan Murphy obviously didn’t feel he was busy enough as executive producer of “Nip/Tuck” and working with producer Brad Pitt as the writer-director of “Running with Scissors.”
So he’s gone and come up with yet another TV series. And “4 oz.” sounds like his most provocative project to date.
Over the course of several seasons, the show will follow a married sportswriter as he undergoes gender transformation and becomes a woman.
(The title refers to the approximate weight of a penis, from which the lead character will eventually separate himself.)
The show will also focus on the sportswriter’s conflicted teen sons.
Murphy will executive produce, alongside Pitt, who makes his first foray into series television.
No airdate has yet been set for the FX series, which promises to be fictional TV’s most daring exploration of gender to date.
Law catches up with Liza
Liza Minnelli, fresh off her cameo appearance in the film “The OH in Ohio” and her recurring role in “Arrested Development,” will guest-star in an upcoming episode of “Law & Order: Criminal Intent.”
Minnelli, 59, will play a former beauty queen whose daughter, an aspiring beauty queen, was found murdered on Halloween night. The episode, called “Masquerade,” is filming now and will air in November.
Minnelli won an Oscar and a Golden Globe for her portrayal of Sally Bowles in the 1972 film “Cabaret.” She won an Emmy for the 1972 TV special “Liza with a Z.” She also won Tony Awards in 1965, 1974 and 1978.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, October 6, 2006.