Ellen’s got a date with Oscar
Still needing proof that Ellen DeGeneres has become a master of the universe?
If you weren’t already impressed by the fact that several major markets are now slotting her hit talk show opposite daytime powerhouse Oprah Winfrey, then maybe you haven’t heard that the lesbian superstar has landed one of show biz’s plummest gigs hosting the Academy Awards.
The woman who made the post-9/11 Emmys funny will take one of the world’s highest-profile emcee gigs in 2007 when she steps into the shoes of such comedy greats as Bob Hope, Johnny Carson and Steve Martin.
Oscar show producer Laura Ziskin says DeGeneres was “born” for this gig, and we’re inclined to agree.
But will she dance out onto the stage? And which famous designer will offer to switch gears and make her a sharp suit instead of a frilly gown?
Lucas to wed gay lover
Little Britain comic Matt Lucas is preparing to marry his gay lover, Kevin McGee, in a civil partnership ceremony after proposing to the TV researcher in May.
The pair’s plans were revealed in the new book “Inside Little Britain,” which takes a personal look at the stars, Lucas and David Walliams.
The book claims, “Matt and Kevin feel destined to be together.”
Olyphant, Gordon-Levitt in “‘Stop Loss’
We have already mentioned that “Boys Don’t Cry” director Kimberly Peirce will make her long-awaited sophomore feature with “Stop Loss,” about Iraq war veterans sent back
But now, several exciting young actors have joined the cast.
Two veterans of queer cinema Timothy Olyphant from “The Broken Hearts Club” and Joseph Gordon-Levitt from “Mysterious Skin” will shave their heads and don uniforms for the roles.
Olyphant plays a commanding officer who orders his troops’ re-enlistment, while Gordon-Levitt makes a turn as a grunt who returns home to a foundering marriage and has a hard time readjusting to civilian life.
The timely drama which also features hunks Ryan Phillippe, Channing Tatum, Jay Hernandez and Anthony Mackie is expected to be major Oscar bait for 2007.
Wainwright’s tribute goes to the movies
If you weren’t one of the lucky gay men what, there were non-queers in the audience? who made it to New York City earlier this year to see Rufus Wainwright recreate Judy Garland’s legendary 1961 Carnegie Hall concert, despair not.
Lesbian uber-producer Christine Vachon (“Boys Don’t Cry,” “Far from Heaven”) arranged to have the whole event filmed by Oscar-winning “American Beauty” director Sam Mendes.
Wainwright’s loving tribute to the famous one-woman evening of vocal pyrotechnics features scads of classic signature Garland songs, from “Over the Rainbow” to “Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart” to “Stormy Weather.”
The concert film should pop up in theaters everywhere in 2007, so you’ll no longer need to think of Wainwright as “The Man That Got Away.”
TLA has a taste for “‘Boy Culture’
An acclaimed queer independent director adapts a provocative book and populates the film with hot boys who don’t wear a lot of clothes sounds like a recipe for success.
That’s the thinking at TLA Releasing, which recently picked up director Q. Allan Brocka’s “Boy Culture,” based on the novel by Matthew Rettenmund.
“Boy Culture” copped the best feature prize at this year’s Philadelphia Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, and TLA plans to have it in theaters in March.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, September 15, 2006.