Translating a hit show from another country can be tricky.
For every hit like “Queer as Folk” or “Ugly Betty,” there’s a “Coupling” or a failed “Absolutely Fabulous” pilot that no one ever sees.
But the hit Australian comedy “Kath & Kim” (a sort of down-market “Ab Fab”) has proven popular on U.S. cable and is a cult hit with queer audiences, so an American remake is on the way. Its pedigree is solid: Cool indie star Selma Blair (“A Dirty Shame”) and “Saturday Night Live” alum Molly Shannon will play the off-kilter pair, and the pilot’s being directed by Paul Feig of “Freaks and Geeks.”
With the right creative tone and marketing (aka pandering to queer audiences), the finished product could be, like “Betty,” another gay household staple.
Kathy Griffin: The show remains the same
What happens when a Hollywood D-lister’s career rises to the level of a C- or B-lister?
That’s the burning issue at stake as Bravo greenlights a fourth season of “Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List.”
Not to worry, however the self-and-everyone-else-deprecating comedian hasn’t suddenly started lunching with Renee Zellweger. But she’s seen her stock go way up since “D-List” began airing (even as her controversial Emmy win speech angered people who never watched the show in the first place), and has become the comic of choice among many queer fans.
According to Griffin, the only thing that may change in the new season is the introduction of uniforms for her staff; otherwise, it’ll be open season on Hollywood, as usual.
No matter what happens, expect hilarity to ensue when the new episodes air later this year.
Driving cross-country in the “‘Fagbug’
A documentary film can spring up from the oddest of circumstances. Take Erin Davies’ experience.
An Albany, N.Y., college student with a rainbow sticker on her late-model VW Beetle, she discovered that the car had been vandalized with the words “fag” and “u r gay” in red spray paint. Instead of having it repainted, she instead decided to hit the road and document her experiences on a 58-day cross-country tour.
Called simply “Fagbug,” the resulting documentary does what more formal studies could never do expose the enemies and allies of gay America by presenting everyday homophobia to random strangers and recording their reactions.
The movie should hit the film-festival circuit sometime later this year, but don’t expect a coinciding trend in vandalized cars to gain much traction.
Where are they now? Chad Allen knows it
Gay men are known sometimes correctly, sometimes wrongly so for their love of actresses of a certain age. And while the cultural reasons for that connection are deep and plentiful enough for a book or five on the subject, the fact remains that the actors in question still need to work.
So what better place for them to do their job than in a gay-themed project?
Enter Margot Kidder (“Superman”), Sean Young (“Bladerunner”) and Morgan Fairchild (“Flamingo Road”), all of whom will have a new opportunity to entertain their devoted queer followings when they guest in two upcoming Donald Strachey mysteries, “Ice Blues” and “On the Other Hand, Death.”
The films, starring Chad Allen as Strachey, have both wrapped and will feature at least one of the women Kidder in a lesbian role.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 1, 2008