Friday, February 27, 2009

Meet the Bradys: Tom and Gisele's post-wed bliss

As previously reported in Loaded Gun, Tom Brady and Gisele Bündchen reportedly tied the knot in a small, intimate wedding in Santa Monica just before 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 26. The video above is allegedly of the Bradys heading off in a private jet at LAX to their post-wedding hideout.

US Weekly reports that the New England Patriots QB and the Victoria's Secret model shared "I do's" in an intimate setting at a small Catholic church near the beach in Santa Monica called St. Monica's Church. The spot is known as "the church of the stars" because several flicks were shot there including "The Bells of St. Mary" and "Going My Way."

In attendance were immediate family, including Brady's 18-month-old son with former girlfriend Bridget Moynahan.

Click here for the lowdown.

Justin Timberlake's 'The Phone' rings the South End

Justin Timberlake, who back on Aug. 11 sent a crew of casting directors to the Boston Hard Rock Cafe, 22 Clinton Street, on the hunt for fresh meat with a wicked-thick accent, sent crews to film a crash scene on Harrison Avenue in the South End yesterday then followed contestants to the Boston Public Library for his new reality show "The Phone."

Producers of the new MTV reality series shot scenes in East Boston this week with John Fiore, a former mob boss from "The Sopranos." Several episodes of "The Phone" are slotted to be shot in Boston. At least one of the episodes features ... no surprise here ... a Boston mafioso.

As previously reported in Loaded Gun, Timberlake is making a return to MTV and this time it's not in a music video with Madonna.

Based on a Dutch idea that juxtaposes "The Bourne Identity" with "The Amazing Race," the show kicks off with two strategically hidden cell phones ringing in opposites sides of a city. MTV producers were looking for "outgoing and adventurous contestants" with a "dynamic personality and are ready to win."

Back in August, a source spilled to Loaded Gun that there was an e-mail going out from casting folks to local theatre groups asking for participants with a wicked thick Boston accent.

Click here for the latest on Timberlake's "The Phone."

Tom Brady and Gisele Bündchen get hitched

After much prenuptial drama, Tom Brady and Gisele Bündchen reportedly tied the knot in a quickie wedding in California just before 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 26.

US Weekly reports that the New England Patriots QB and the Victoria's Secret model shared "I do's" in an intimate setting at a small Catholic church near the beach in Santa Monica called St. Monica's Church. The spot is known as "the church of the stars" because several flicks were shot there including "The Bells of St. Mary" and "Going My Way."

According to the report, Bündchen wore a Dolce & Gabbana ivory lace gown with handmade satin roses and a headband. Her three pups supposedly sported matching D&G lace collars

Brady and Bündchen have both made headlines with previous high-profile break-ups. Bündchen's ex, Leonardo DiCaprio, was recently in town shooting scenes for Martin Scorsese's "Shutter Island" and Brady's baby mama, Bridget Moynahan, was recently in town filming "Bunker Hill," a TV pilot for TNT starring NKOTB Donnie Wahlberg.

Click here for the original Loaded Gun post.

Tom Selleck's 'Jesse Stone' hits Boston ... sort of

Tom Selleck, known for his '80s series "Magnum P.I." and his stint on NBC's "Friends," will star in the fifth installment of the "Jesse Stone" series following a small-town police chief of Paradise, Mass. (loosely based on Marblehead) who solves big-league crimes.

For his latest outing hitting CBS on Sunday, March 1 at 9 p.m., Selleck heads to Boston (well, it's Halifax, Nova Scotia transformed to look like Boston) which leads directly to his sixth installment called "No Remorse."

In "No Remorse," Selleck investigates a series of murders in ... big shocker here ... Boston.

Here's the lowdown from Variety:

Jesse gets caught in the crossfire when someone tries to murder his police-captain buddy (Stephen McHattie) in Boston -- prompting him to investigate whodunit, while introducing him to an attractive internal-affairs investigator named Sidney Greenstreet (Leslie Hope), doubtless somebody's inside joke.

Based on the popular book series by Robert B. Parker, crews transformed Halifax, Nova Scotia to look like the oh-so-mean streets of Boston in both "Thin Ice" and "No Remorse."

Click here for details.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

New Orleans-style parade planned for Milky Way

After 15 years as an award-winning restaurant, entertainment complex and neighborhood institution in the Jamaica Plain-area of Boston, , Bella Luna Restaurant and The Milky Way Lounge will officially bid adieu to its current location of 403-405 Centre Street in Jamaica Plain on Saturday, March 21.

The Milky Way's last show 1 p.m. on Sunday, March 22 will mark the official "transfer of love" to their new location. Fans of the venue are invited to join in the process which will include a New Orleans-style parade from the old location to the new.

In the spirit of a New Orleans jazz procession, the business will move seven blocks away to The Brewery Complex, at 284 Amory Street in Jamaica Plain and plans to re-open in early to mid April.

The new locale will include skee ball, dancing, live music, free parking, a 50-seat outdoor patio and of course their signature food and cocktails. Unfortunately, the Milky Way's vintage candlepin lanes will not be able to make the move.

When asked about the relocation, co-owner Kathie Mainzer emotes, "A move like this is a challenge for us and for the neighborhood who have enjoyed our dining room, patio and lounge for over 15 years. But, we are extremely excited for our new home, and we look forward to welcoming people to the Brewery complex."

Click here for the lowdown.
Photo of Bella Luna courtyard by Sam Baltrusis

D SCALE presents Patrick Pierce's sculptures

D SCALE, Dennis Duffy's award-winning furnishings gallery offering glam vintage and custom-capable furnishings with all the style and detail found in Duffy’s interior design projects, will present a series of sculptures by Lowell artist and poet, Patrick Pierce, for SoWa's First Fridays gallery walk 5-8 p.m. Friday, March 6 at D SCALE, 520 Harrison Avenue.

Pierce’s work reflects a multi-dimensional artist of vision, scope, intellect and humor. During the reception, the sculptor will share his views on the importance of art.

A percentage of the sale of the show’s art will benefit Bay Cove Human Services. Bay Cove serves more than 12,000 individuals and their families each year at more than 100 different program sites throughout Greater Boston and southeastern Massachusetts.

Bay Cove is a private, non-profit organization improving the quality of lives of the children, adults and their families who face the challenges of developmental disabilities, aging, mental illness and drug and alcohol addiction.

Click here for more about Patrick Pierce and here for the lowdown on D SCALE.

Richard Gere honored by Boston Youth Moves

Richard Gere, who unleashed his inner song-and-dance side during his killer performance as Billy Flynn in the film version of "Chicago," will be honored alongside Mitzi Gaynor at the Boston Youth Moves gala fundraiser called "Swellegance" at the Westin Copley Place, 10 Huntington Ave., on Saturday, March 7.

Tony Award winner Chita Rivera will present the Lifetime Achievement Award to Gaynor, known for her work in "South Pacific."

Gere, who is slotted to receive the Image Award for "heightening the visibility of dance, in particular for male dancers," will make the trek if his schedule permits.

The black-tie fundraiser will include an exhibition from Alvin Ailey principal dancer Kirven J. Boyd, as well as performances from the students of Boston Youth Moves. JC Monahan will emcee.

Tickets are $175. Call 617-523-1355 or click here for details.

The week in quotes from Hollywood in the Hub

"I wanted to be a political science professor and go to school in Boston. I never wanted to be a big, famous movie star and TV star."

--Eliza Dushku, a Boston-born actress and star of the new Fox series "Dollhouse,"
gives props to her mom Judith Dushku, a professor at Suffolk University calling her a "hard-core liberal feminist" who's been teaching women's studies and international politics for 30 years.

"I'm a Boston driver always and forever. I get crazy out on the roads!"

--"Dollhouse" actress Eliza Dushku continues her Boston love fest en route to the Independent Spirit Awards.

"Producers don't want to start for fear of their talent being pulled in the middle of production. This trickles down, the hairdressers, the makeup, the casting people, the actors, the crew everybody feels this."

--Boston Casting's Angela Peri says talks of a SAG strike in Los Angeles has taken its toll in Massachusetts putting movie crews on hold since December.

"We're becoming Hollywood East. Our film tax incentive has made a difference."

--Nick Paleologos, director of the Massachusetts Film Office and guest speaker at the annual North Shore Business Expo at the Sheraton Ferncroft hotel, believes our state is well positioned to be a major player in the film industry over the next three to four years.

"The dumber the movie is, sometimes, the more money it makes."

--Gerald Peary, a Boston-area documentary filmmaker and critic, predicts on CNN that the recession will kick off an era of stupid movies with small budgets.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Nine Inch Needles' subversive handicraft circle

When Bazaar Bizarre founder and noted author Greg Der Ananian assembles his crew of "crafty queers" 6 p.m. every Monday at Diesel Café in Somerville, the group he jokingly calls Nine Inch Needles generally devolves into a public display of affection.

We’re talking a full-blown crafting orgy.

"For gay men, so much of socializing is about bars and cruising," he says here.
"It sounds a little silly to say, but I wanted to create an alternative space for gay guys to socialize. Not that there’s anything wrong with bars, but I wanted to demonstrate publicly that there are other things that gay guys are into other than going to bars."

As Der Ananian cross-stitches in the back area of Diesel Café, his middle finger sticks out as he pulls the thread with a precise ferocity reserved for a concert pianist or medical intern stitching up a wound.

When asked if his "rock star" status in the crafting world has led to any dates, Der Ananian jokes, "It’s more rocking chair than rock star. I mean, having the hobby of an 85-year-old woman isn’t hot."

Andy Rader, a Nine Inch Needles regular who’s knitting away at a scarf-like garment he calls a "throat hug," chimes into the discussion. "We’re the gay version of the crazy cat lady," Rader adds. "It’s not necessarily a turn on."

Click here for my writeup on Nine Inch Needles in Bay Windows.

Boston ranks No. 6 on list for indie filmmakers

MovieMaker Magazine ranks the 25 best cities in the U.S. to ride it out as an indie filmmaker in the Winter 2009 edition of the publication. Weighing in a slew of factors, including cost of living, unemployment rate, median salary and home values, Boston ranks No. 6 on the list.

After months of research, interviews and calculations which fluctuated because of the current economic climate, Boston's growing list of films currently in production were taken into account as well as the state's financial incentives. Also, extra credit was given to cities that dared to challenge the status quo--like special "green" efforts.

According to the magazine, some were usual suspects like Austin, Texas but a few were surprises like Milwaukee, WI and Stamford, CT.

Here's MovieMaker Magazine's top 10 "Best Places to Live in 2009":

1. Chicago, IL
2. Atlanta, GA
3. New York, NY
4. Shreveport, LA
5. Albuquerque, NM
6. Boston, MA
7. Stamford, CT
8. Memphis, TN
9. Milwaukee, WI
10. Austin, TX

Click here for the complete list.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

How to make a recession-proof movie in Boston

Two words that accurately describes the recent crop of made-in-Boston flicks hitting the big screen: dumb and dumber.

According to a story posted today called “Will the recession change movies?" by CNN’s John Sutter, it seems that film ticket sales are way up during the current economic downturn.

The shocker in the CNN story? Two made-in-Boston films--”Paul Blart: Mall Cop” and “Bride Wars”--are among the five top-grossing films of 2009. Go figure.

It seems that folks are willing to fork out their last $10 bucks for a two-hour escape … even if the film is dumb as dirt like “Pink Panther 2.”

Gerald Peary, a Boston-area documentary filmmaker and critic, weighs in on the CNN discussion.

“It's a romantic myth that having no money is good for movie making,” he says, predicting that the recession will kick off an era of stupid movies with even smaller budgets.

“The dumber the movie is, sometimes, the more money it makes,” Peary continues. “Those movies are somehow both critic proof and depression proof.”

Click here for the lowdown.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Fred Phelps' hate crew targets Cambridge

Rev. Fred Phelps' vitriolic, anti-gay group of supporters will be in Cambridge on Friday, March 13 to protest Cambridge Rindge & Latin's gay-straight alliance club called Project 10 East.

The good news? A counter-protest is in the works spearheaded by Driving Equality organizer Chris Mason. For every minute that the Phelps' congregation pickets Cambridge Rindge & Latin high school with their infamous "God Hates Fags" signs, donors are encouraged to pledge a set amount to Driving Equality.

The longer the group pickets CRLS, the larger the donation to the activist group organized by 27-year-old Tufts student Mason, who plans to make a 85-day trek across America in May to all of the lower 48 states to advance LGBT equality.

Driving Equality plans to display a sign in front of the "God Hates Fags" clan tallying how much money they have helped raise for gay rights.

Mason held a similar Phelps-a-thon outside of the Bad Habit production of "The Laramie Project" at the BCA on Dec. 12, 2008. The counter-protest raised $4,647 in 45 minutes.

Click here for the backstory.

'What Doesn't Kill You' flick set for Blu-ray release

After a brief theatrical run in NYC and Los Angeles, the made-in-Boston flick "What Doesn't Kill You" will make its Blu-ray debut on Tuesday, April 28.

Among the bonus features is audio commentary with co-writer/director Brian Goodman and co-writer Donnie Wahlberg, the vignette "Makes You Stronger: The Making of What Doesn't Kill You," and deleted/alternate scenes.

The real-life crime drama "What Doesn't Kill You," originally titled "Real Men Cry," is set in Boston and stars Ethan Hawke and Mark Ruffalo as childhood friends "who grew up in an Irish-Catholic neighborhood where small-time crimes were as common as confessionals." Fast forward 15 years where the duo is trapped in a cycle of scoring quick cash, drug addiction and an ever-changing South Boston landscape.

Locations include the park in Dorchester Heights in Southie, the Billerica House of Correction and East 4th St. between P street and Farragut Road.

Click here for the backstory on "What Doesn't Kill You."

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Boston's House of Blues' velvet rope beginnings?

While most reports say the grand opening of Boston's House of Blues this weekend went on without a hitch, at least one Loaded Gun reader says the new multi-use complex on Lansdowne Street is a victim of its own success.

"I tried to see the Gypsy Kings there on Friday night," writes BMP1275. "The line was wrapped around Cask n' Flagon. At 7:45! I asked if they would delay the start of the show and they said 'no.' These idiots have ONE door to get in. Such a huge disappointment. I'm trying to get my money back from those fraudulent shysters."

The crew at the Bostonist had a similar experience waiting behind the HOB's velvet rope.

"Apparently the 2000-seat club decided on a 500-person capacity for its sneak preview, but issued far more tickets than that," comments Kerry Skemp here. "The club reached capacity quickly, making a lot of Bostonians (including ourselves) wait in line outside, where we called other folks to tell them not to bother showing up and eventually left the venue without hearing a note of music."

Upcoming musical acts include Jesse McCartney on Friday, Feb. 27, Bloc Party on Thursday, March 19, Lady GaGa on Monday, March 30 and Katy Perry on Wednesday, April 1.

For those not in the know, Avalon officially closed on Oct. 1, 2007 and was sold to the House of Blues by the Lyons Group. The former Lansdowne hot spot has been transformed into a live-music complex that will accommodate 2,500 including a VIP lounge and a 100-seat restaurant.

Click here for the backstory.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Norm MacDonald brings biting sarcasm to Boston

Norm MacDonald, known for his smart-ass commentary as the anchor of “Saturday Night Live‘s" Weekend Update segment in the late ‘90s, is back to his roots packing comedy venues across the country. He’s doing a two-gig stint tomorrow night--7 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 21--at the Wilbur Theatre in Boston.

MacDonald, who will team up with his former “SNL” cohorts including Adam Sandler, David Spade and Rob Schneider as well as “Paul Blart: Mall Cop” funnyman Kevin James, is slotted to revisit the area in May for a 66-day film shoot in Boston centering around a group of guys who return to their hometown. Think a “Big Chill”-style comedy … but with a lot of laughs.

The made-in-Boston flick from Sandler’s Happy Madison Productions is tentatively called "Lake House." So far, film scouts for the flick have scoped out Franklin Park Zoo and locations in Wellesley, Wareham and Southboro.

Click here for the lowdown on MacDonald’s performance at The Wilbur Theatre.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The week in quotes from Hollywood in the Hub

"People would say this guy's just an airhead celebrity and he doesn't know anything, and at the time of course, I didn't. So I thought: well I should learn about this and I traveled there.”

--Cambridge homeboy Ben Affleck, speaking at the Children Mending Hearts Gala at Los Angeles' House of Blues, says he had initial fears that people would think of him as “just an airhead celebrity” when he got involved with charity work in Africa.
Affleck received a surprise visit at the gala last night from his wife, Jennifer Garner.

"Yeah, I guess I wasn't a man until tonight."

--Actor James Franco, during last Friday night's Harvard's Hasty Pudding Theatrical's 2009 Man of the Year award roast at the university's renovated New College Theatre, endured a bar mitzvah officiated by "Rabbi Spider Man" coupled with a drag rendition of "Havah Nagila" performed by the "Yentl Express" dancers

"Maybe, maybe not. All those reports are unfortunately not true. I'm in a great spot in my life. I have a lot of people that care about me that I love and I love being around. My girlfriend is certainly one of them."

--Patriot's injured QB Tom Brady manages to
evade a definitive answer on whether or not he's engaged to Victoria's Secret model Gisele Bundchen at a press conference held at the West End Boys & Girls Club in Allston.

“We desperately need a professional studio space in the Boston area because we have all these productions that are being drawn to Boston and really the only thing that’s missing is a major set of sound stages, places where you can shoot that are not based on being on location."

--Boston University's College of Communication department of film and television chair Charles Merzbacher spills to the Daily Free Press that the addition of Plymouth Rock Studios will help the industry bloom in Massachusetts.

"Want your cat to pee in the toilet instead of the litter box?"

--Guess you can teach your dog ... and cat ... new tricks. Animal Planet is casting animal owners and their pets for a new reality show. They're holding an open call 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 21 at Boston Casting, 129 Braintree St. in Allston.

Food Network casting new reality series in Boston

Are you are a connoisseur, critic, chef, aficionado, restaurant owner, food expert or are just in a serious love affair with food? You're in luck.

Food Network is on the hunt in Boston for fresh meat next week for a new food-adventure reality series. Think "Amazing Race" for foodies.

Here's the lowdown from the casting call:

The show focuses on two teams who race through man culinary hot spots competing in challenges in the ultimate chowhound smack down.

Food Network is looking for high-energy, competitive teams of two (husband & wife, two good friends, two co-workers, etc.) who are 25-45 and have some connection, knowledge or experience in the food industry.

Bring a photo and bio to the following locations:

10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday, Feb. 23 at
The Mall at Chestnut Hill (Rt. 9 Westbound).

10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 25 at Boston Casting, 129 Braintree Street in Boston.

Click here for more details.

Warner Bros. picks up Boston's 'Edge of Darkness'

Warner Bros. has acquired the North American rights to the made-in-Boston thriller "Edge of Darkness" starring Mel Gibson, reports Variety.

The film, currently in post-production, was directed by Martin Campbell from a script by "The Departed" scribe William Monahan.

Based on the dark 1985 BBC miniseries, "Edge of Darkness" is a thriller about a Boston cop who investigates the murder of his protester daughter who was killed on the steps of his own home.

The positive news punctuates a tumultuous remake of the successful British miniseries including Oscar winner Robert De Niro abruptly quitting the flick on his first day citing "creative differences" coupled with Brit Ray Winstone replacing him, a tabloid rumor circulating that the married Gibson has been spending "quality time" on the Boston set with an Eastern European musician known as Oksana as well as a flurry of manufactured rumors including his reported bar hopping around Boston in August.

"Edge of Darkness" was shot in Boston from Monday, Aug. 18 until Saturday, Nov. 22.

Locations include South Station, Foodie's in the South End, Cathedral of the Holy Cross, 315 Dartmouth Street, 68 Bradfield in Roslindale, Gannon Municipal Golf Course in Lynn, Hampshire County Courthouse in Northampton, Mount Sugarloaf in South Deerfield as well as a sound stage in Chelsea.

The film is slotted for release in November. Click here for the backstory on "Edge of Darkness."

Wednesday, February 18, 2009's Cocktails in Boston media bash

Join me 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thursday, March 5 at District, 180 Lincoln Street in Boston's Leather District for an all-media networking event introducing from fellow Mediabistro instructors who will be teaching seminars at the BCA's Calderwood Pavilion, 527 Tremont St. in the upcoming months.

Click on the link below to RSVP. Based on the buzz already, the after-work event is going to be fab!

Forward the following link to media professionals only!

'Ghosts of Girlfriends Past' movie poster scarf trick

So, what's up with Matthew McConaughey's scarf in the "Ghosts of Girlfriends Past" movie poster?

Based on the promo, the Onion's A.V. Club jokingly takes a stab at the made-in-Boston film's plot here:

"Jennifer Garner will spend the entire movie wondering why McConaughey refuses to take off that red scarf, why he insists on wearing it everywhere—to the beach, to bed, to their wedding. Years will pass, until one night curiosity will get the better of her. While he's sound asleep, Garner will slowly untie the scarf from around McConaughey's neck, and his head will fall to the floor ..."

As previously reported in Loaded Gun, "The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past" was filmed in the Hub for three months beginning last February.

A bachelor played by McConaughey is haunted by the ghosts of his past girlfriends (including Garner) at his younger brother's wedding, awakening feelings for his first love. Michael Douglas, Anne Archer and Robert Forster co-star in this made-in-Boston flick.

Think Ebenezer Scrooge and "A Christmas Carol" but with a helluva hotter looking ... and more tanned based on the movie poster ... leading man.

Filming locations include Sonsie, 327 Newbury St., the Leather District's South Street near South Station, Saint located at 90 Exeter Street and the Crane Estate's Crane Mansion in Ipswich. While filming on Newbury Street, Garner made a dash to the North Face store for a winter jacket.

"The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past" hits theaters on Friday, May 1.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

CW's 'For Better Or Worse' TV show shot in Boston

Didn't satiate your bridezilla fix with Kate Hudson's lackluster made-in-Boston "Bride Wars" flick? Don't fret. There's a new wedding-themed production in the works.

Producers of "The Bachelor" and "Wife Swap" have put a new twist on relationship-based reality shows for the upcoming CW series called "For Better Or Worse." Following a couple on the verge of tying the knot, the Herald reports that crews were in town filming last week at The Saint located at 90 Exeter St. and up and down Commonwealth Avenue near Boston University.

The show takes an unmarried couple in a long-term relationship and gives them the "ultimatum of a lifetime." Presented with the option of an all-expense-paid wedding at the end of the week, the duo has the choice to say "I do" or "I don't" after spending a week with family and friends hashing out the nuptials.

The CW has ordered six episodes of the wedding-theme series with at least one hour-long edition set in Boston.

NBC's 'America's Got Talent' casting in Boston soon

Can you contort your body into a human pretzel or swallow swords while riding a unicycle?

"America's Got Talent," NBC's hit series from "American Idol" producers FremantleMedia and Simon Cowell's SYCO Television, is filming its casting special on Saturday, March 7 and Sunday, March 8 at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, 415 Summer Street.

The series returns this summer to feature the hottest and most unique performers from across the country to the surprise, delight, amusement and entertainment of millions of Americans nationwide.

Reality TV's ultimate variety show--currently scouting in Los Angeles, Atlanta and Chicago--expects a huge turnout in Boston and they're looking for all types of acts ranging from bands to dancers to comedians to aerialists.

Producers are asking for a video link of your performance (time to dust off your baton and whip out the camcorder) and some background information including your occupation outside of your talent and how you began performing and why.

Boston Casting is now in charge of scouting for locals. E-mail Jason at if interested.

Monday, February 16, 2009

'The Hills'-style series hitting Martha's Vineyard

Are you the next Lauren Conrad or Spencer Pratt? The CW and 25/7 Productions have begun casting for a "docu-soap" reality concept set at Martha’s Vineyard with a working title of ... no surprise here ... "The Vineyard."

Here's the lowdown from the casting call:

On an island inhabited by high-profile residents, movie stars, politicians, writers and artists you join a prominent clique.

Whether you're returning to the Island in search of a good time, are a first timer looking for a new experience, or are a local who's seen it all, what you ultimately find, is your place.

Think "The Hills" meets "Laguna Beach" ... but with a Boston accent.

According to this memo here, the casting team is currently in Boston (on Monday, Feb. 16) until Monday, March, 2. Filming is slotted to kick off in the summer.

Click here to apply for "The Vineyard."

Oscar comes to Hollywood in the Hub on Feb. 22

Longing for the glamour and clamor of the Left Coast's Oscar night coupled with Boston's Hollywood East mystique? You're in luck.

Boston's Langham Hotel, 250 Franklin St., is hosting the only Bay State bash sanctioned by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Science kicking off at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 22.

Feel like a celebrity as you walk the red carpet sporting your black-tie best, wave to adoring paparazzi and step into the ultimate viewing party which includes Hollywood-style goodie bags and a chance to hold a real Oscar ... actor Chris Cooper donated his "Best Supporting Actor" statue for the night.

The event benefits The Ellie Fund for Breast Cancer. Tickets are $150 for general admission and $250 for VIP. Click here or call 617-935-9040 for additional details.

Also, the Brattle Theatre, 40 Brattle St. in Cambridge, is throwing their less chi-chi version of an Academy Award bash which includes a pre-awards party and fundraiser (5:30-7:30 p.m.) followed by a members-only event which includes hors d'oeuvres, open bar and the official Oscar broadcast starting at 8 p.m.

RSVP by Monday, Feb. 16. Click here for the lowdown.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

'ANTM' winner McKey Sullivan hits The Estate

Local fans of Tyra Banks' "America's Next Top Model" have a reason to jump for joy. Why? Last season's winner McKey Sullivan and finalist Sheena Satana are slotted to strut their stuff at The Estate, 1 Boylston Place, with DJ Suss One on Saturday, March 7.

Sullivan and Satana's appearance punctuates a celeb-driven series of special guests at The Estate, including DJ Sam Ronson and her crimson-haired gal pal Lindsay Lohan spinning a quick-and-dirty set on Wednesday, Jan 21, "America's Next Top Model" winner CariDee English on Wednesday, Dec. 31 and a party with "Dancing with the Stars" couple Karina Smirnoff and Maksim Chmerkovskiy on Friday, January 30.

The Pussycat Dolls are slotted to stop by on Monday, March 16 celebrating The Estate's two-year anniversary. The ladies will be in town to open for Britney Spears' show at TD Banknorth Garden.Click here for the lowdown. Tickets are $20 a pop.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Readers sound off on shake-up at Channel 7

Comments are pouring in regarding the recent shake-up at WHDH-TV. As previously reported in Loaded Gun, Channel 7 kicked openly gay newscaster Brandon Rudat to the curb on Wednesday, Feb. 11 after he sided with ousted anchor Randy Price's criticism of the station's flashy approach to the news.

Here's a sampling of the discussion:

"I suspected something was 'fishy' with the sudden announcement of Price's 'retirement,' since there wasn't the typically celebratory build up to the announcement. Nothing had been said about Rudat being gay and out, but it didn't take much imagination to figure it out. Those eyebrows!"

The commenter continues, "Too bad that WHDH has to be all flashy with the news. It's very evident that the focus isn't on just reporting news in the best possible way, and that the management of WHDH, like so many other news stations, is caught up in the 'ratings game.' Seems like reality TV has taken over the nightly news as well. Best of luck to Price and Rudat. Hopefully they'll find other assignments in Boston."

Here's another comment: "It is a very sad day in Boston. Randy Price delivered the news in a "mature" professional manner. The immature news "readers" on this station of late are an insult to serious news. But I guess if you look at it. Channel 7 isn't interested in serious news or its delivery. So it's time to look for another news source. Channel 7you will reap what you sow. Fluff."

And another Channel 7 slam: "Randy was the only thing that made that station worth watching and somewhat respectable, although they do put some meaningless trash on T. For them to insult and crap on their best card is pretty pathetic. Now that is some loser management. I'm not watching for sure."

One more from Loaded Gun reader Alan: "Pathetic treatment of the only person who brought any class and seriousness to that flimsy station. On to another local station for sure."

Actor James Franco milks 'gay cow' at Hasty roast

James Franco, known for his work as Harry Osborn in the "Spider-Man" trilogy, his acclaimed performance in the film "Milk" and his Golden Globe-winning portrayal of James Dean on TNT, milked a so-called "gay cow" during Friday night's Harvard's Hasty Pudding Theatrical's 2009 Man of the Year award roast at the university's renovated New College Theatre, 10-12 Holyoke St.

The 30-year-old actor also endured a spoof bar mitzvah officiated by "Rabbi Spider Man" coupled with a drag rendition of "Havah Nagila" performed by the "Yentl Express" dancers.

Franco donned a gold bra, a blond wig and purple high-heeled pumps to accept his Pudding Pot.

Last Thursday, Renee Zellweger rode in the back of a silver convertible Bentley during the chilly parade through Harvard Square before accepting her Woman of the Year award.

Christopher Walken and Charlize Theron were honored as the Hasty Pudding Theatricals’ Man and Woman of the Year in 2008.

'The Maiden Heist' show will go on in Worcester

Contrary to a report in the daily paper, Christopher Walken and William H. Macy, stars of the made-in-Boston flick "The Maiden Heist," will offer a sneak peek of their art-heist comedy at Worcester's Hanover Theatre at 7:30 p.m. March 7, 2009.

Yep, the show will go on. But, it may be your only chance to see the film on the big screen ... at least for awhile.

Fears that the Hanover Theatre gala was canceled were fueled after Yari Film Group's Emily Lambert e-mailed the Globe saying, "I don't anticipate any screenings of 'The Maiden Heist' in the near future."

While the sneak peek in Worcester is still a go, Yari Film Group's releasing arm, which was forced to file Chapter 11 back in December, has sent the film's producer Rob Paris scrambling to find a new distributor.

“I have no doubt we will find ourself with a wonderful new distributor,” he tells the Worcester Telegram. “It’s not a question of ‘if.’ It’s a question of ‘when’ and ‘who.’ ”

"The Maiden Heist," formerly known as "The Lonely Maiden," stars Walken, Macy and Morgan Freeman in a comedy of errors following three museum security guards and their attempt to steal artwork after it's been transferred to another museum.

Proceeds from the movie gala will benefit The Worcester Art Museum. The WAM's Renaissance Court and art galleries were transformed into the film's scene of the crime back in December 2007. Boston locations include South Boston's Murphy's Law and the fire-destroyed The Grecian Yearning in Allston.

Paris along with the film's director Peter Hewitt and screenwriter Michael LeSieur are also scheduled to attend the premiere.

Click here for tickets, ranging from $30 to $200 for VIP access.
Photo credit Yari Film Group

Friday, February 13, 2009

Free 'Rebirth of a Nation' screening at The Beehive

In honor of Black History Month, a free screening of the film "Rebirth of a Nation" by Paul Miller (aka DJ Spooky That Subliminal Kid), will be held at The Beehive from 7-8 p.m. Sunday Feb 22.

The free screening is one stop of a month-long traveling even including stops at the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin, Texas and the Duke Ellington School for the Arts in Washington D.C.

The film is a "remix" of D.W. Griffith's 1915 "Birth of a Nation" that was highly controversial due to its graphic portrayal of racism in the post-Civil War south. Miller's remix deconstructs one of the most influential and inflammatory movies ever made, while drawing striking parallels to present socio-political conflicts in America.

The film includes Paul's original score, performed by Kronos Quartet.

The Beehive is located at 541 Tremont St. in the South End. Call 617-423-0069 or click here for the lowdown.

Boston-based Backchannelmedia in Contentinople

In today's edition of Contentinople, I launched the first in a series of long-format "Tech Mavens" interviews on Dan Hassan's Backchannelmedia, a Boston-based technology provider and emerging leader in the race for displaying Internet-enabled ads on television.

On Monday, Feb. 9, Hassan and fellow CEO Michael Kokernak announced a partnership with Gray Television to deploy Backchannelmedia's opt-in "Clickable TV" solution on all of Gray's 36 local television stations, which reach approximately 7 million people in 30 markets. The partnership expands Backchannelmedia's deployment roster to 68 television stations nationwide -- reaching approximately 16.7 percent of all U.S. households with a TV.

Currently based on South Street in the Leather District, Hassan says the tech group has plans to expand into NYC and Los Angeles in the near future but will continue to operate out of its headquarters in Boston.

"It's exciting and unique for a company that's serving new technologies for traditional media is coming out of Boston," he says. "We will always have a base here but future expansions will include New York as well as Los Angeles. From a technical standpoint, the quality of people in Boston has been great for us."

Click here for my complete feature on Backchannelmedia in Contentinople.

'On Golden Pond' screenwriter offers master class

Ernest Thompson, the Academy Award winner for his best adapted screenplay "On Golden Pond," is slotted to teach a screenwriting master class on Saturday, March 14 and Sunday, March 15 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at the InterContinental Hotel, 510 Atlantic Ave. in Boston.

An experienced writer, actor and director, Thompson will analyze scenes submitted for discussion and performance. Hosted by Boston Casting, the class will also allow actors to hash out scenes during the seminar and will help advanced screenwriters to fine-tune their work.

Armed with over 40 years in the business, Thompson has written more than 25 screenplays and has directed a slew of actors including Shirley MacClaine, Julie Andrews and Robert Downey Jr.

Thompson, who currently lives in Kittery, Maine, is currently in the pre-production process of his latest film, "Elysian Farm," which will be shot in New England later this year.

The class costs $150. Click here for the lowdown.
Photo by P.T. Sullivan

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The week in quotes from Hollywood in the Hub

"I want people to be able to watch this show and see a guy who worked very hard and has respect for the people he lives with. It's definitely an experience you can't get anywhere else."

--Scott Herman, the 24-year-old gym rat from "The Real World: Brooklyn" from Salem, N.H. and Lawrence, MA, chats with the Boston Globe's Johnny Diaz (who also had a stint as Dan's BF on "The Real World: Miami") about his experience on the MTV reality show.

"Boston has a lot of European architecture but you still have to go in and look for specific corners and styles. I had a great production designer who was able to just with little tricks and little bits and pieces transform these locations into different towns. It was a combination of making that work and the scheduling nightmare we had and then building stuff."

--Harald Zwart
, director of "Pink Panther 2," says it was a tough task transforming Boston into Paris and Rome.

"We would like to thank you for being indecisive Irish men and women,"

--Sean Penn jokes alongside Mikey Rourke via video presented at the Boston Society of Film Critics awards held at the Brattle Theatre in Cambridge. The two tied for best actor in the BSFC voting in December and apparently they thought that was pretty cool.

“I love my Pudding Pot. It’s the nicest door stop I’ve ever had ... I’ll love it more when I bring it to the party and fill it with vodka!”

--Renee Zellweger, recipient of Harvard's Hasty Pudding Theatrical's 2009 Woman of the Year, laughs it up with a crew of Harvard men in drag during her roast at the New College Theatre.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

'The Departed' scribe helms art heist flick

Hollywood's infatuation with Boston-based cops-and-robbers flicks continues with today's announcement that "The Departed" writer William Monahan plans to direct a Boston-set flick on the forthcoming memoirs of career criminal Myles Connor called "The Art of the Heist: Confessions of a Master Thief, Rock-and-Roller and Prodigal Son."

Connor, who earned national ink in the '70s and '80s for his involvement in a string of museum robberies as well as his work with the rock band Myles and the Wild Ones who backed Roy Orbison, will publish his book in April by Collins. For the record, Connor claims he was nowhere near the Isabella Stewart Gardner Musuem on the night of the legendary $300 million art heist in 1990.

Monahan, who recently scripted the made-in-Boston film "Edge of Darkness" with Mel Gibson, will make his directorial debut with the "Heist" film adaptation.

The Oscar-winning screenwriter, who currently lives in the North Shore but grew up on Washington Street in Roslindale, is also connected to the controversial project with Martin Scorsese on hit man John Martorano's life story recently picked up by Graham King's GK Films.

While the movie is set in Boston, there's no confirmation if Monahan's flick will be shot in the Hub.

Oversaturation of thug-related movies in Boston? Click here for Loaded Gun's take on the debate.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Plymouth Rock Studios zoning approved by state

Attorney General Martha Coakley’s office gave the green light on Friday, Feb. 6 to a zoning overlay district needed for Plymouth Rock Studios, a $500-million film and television studio based in Plymouth, Massachusetts.

In approving the new "Movie and Entertainment Production Overlay District" (MEPOD), the Attorney General's Office remarks, "The proposed by-law establishes an overlay district in which a Movie and Entertainment Production Studio Development is allowed as of right subject to site plan review."

Slated to open Sept. 2010, Plymouth Rock Studios will become a major staging area and production studio for filmmakers and offer an educational component.

Approved by Plymouth on Oct. 27, 2008, the full-service "green" film and TV studio facility will boast 14 sound stages--ranging in size from 18,000 to 24,000 square feet--and would be built on the site that's currently a 240-acre golf course. The project will also feature a 10-acre back lot and a hotel.

Click here for the latest on Plymouth Rock Studios.

Adam Sandler plans homecoming for Boston flick

Remember "Paul Blart: Mall Cop" star Kevin James spilling about a return trip to the Hub with an upcoming made-in-Boston film slotted for production?

Well, New England native Adam Sandler and his "Happy Madison Productions" crew including James, David Spade and Chris Rock are slotted to begin filming a "Big Chill"-style comedy ... but with a lot of laughs ... scheduled for 66 days kicking off in May. The show is tentatively called "Lake House."

According to the Globe here, Sandler is working on the still-untitled flick centering around a group of guys who return to their hometown.

Other names being thrown out include Steve Buscemi, Rob Schneider and Norm MacDonald.

As previously mentioned in Loaded Gun, James says Massachusetts' tax incentives are enough to bring the funnyman back for more.

"[The state has] fantastic tax breaks but more than that, I tell you, it's got the great East Coast feel and the people are great. There's a chance that I'm going to shoot my next movie and the one after that there so I think we're going to do two more [in Boston]," James tells FOX25.

"Paul Blart: Mall Cop" was filmed on location at the Burlington Mall with additional scenes shot on Centre Street in West Roxbury, the Boston Harbor Islands and South Shore Plaza in Braintree.

Click here for the backstory on "Paul Blart: Mall Cop."

Monday, February 09, 2009

'Holiday Handjobs' boasts naughty V-Day crafts

Who knew needlepoint could be so subversive? I just spent a lively evening with Greg Der Ananian (a.k.a. Nice Armenian Boy) and his crew of "crafty queers" at Diesel Cafe, 257 Elm St. in Somerville.

I was interviewing the Bazaar Bizarre founder for a GLBT publication focusing on his weekly gay handicraft circle called Nine Inch Needles (NIN). Der Ananian was busy stitching rags for his upcoming "Holiday Handjobs" event, a DIY punk marketplace chock full of racy goodies like Der Ananian's handcrafted cloth (pictured above) that goes for $20 a pop.

Originally slotted for the holidays (but rescheduled because of the Dec. 19 snowstorm), Der Ananian and Truth Serum founder Aliza Shapiro have organized a V-Day version offering goods from Dave Ortega, SugarBee Books and Vagabond Jewelry coupled with entertainment from Billy Hough and Kielbasia, a drag queen armed with an accordion.

"Holiday Handjobs" is scheduled for 7-11 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 11 at the George Dilboy VFW Hall, 371 Summer St. in Somerville. $1 donation suggested.

Click here for details.

Boston's new House of Blues goes heavy metal

Crews are working around the clock to transform the massive multi-use complex on Lansdowne Street into Boston's House of Blues before doors open on Thursday, Feb. 19. From the outside, construction debris litters the area and the structure looks like a brick-and-metal monster of a building, replete with Coney Island-esque red, yellow and blue adornments and protruding aluminum beams.

The question: Will Boston's House of Blues be ready for its unveiling in less than two weeks?

Boston's House of Blues 100-seat restaurant is slotted to open on Thursday, Feb. 19 with executive chef Tindaro Losurdo taking the helm. He's also spearheading the grits at the HOB's 75-seat private dining area known as the Foundation Room, catering to the complex's VIP diners.

From the outside, things are shaping up slowly. Last weekend, it was a literal dead zone but the pace has picked up. This weekend, crews were spotted putting the finishing touches on the dining room. From my outsiders perspective, the decor is a notch above the rock 'n' roll kitsch weve seen at similar venues like the Hard Rock Cafe.

J. Geils Band, in a sold-out show, will come together for the first time in 10 years for the grand opening to kick of the House of Blue's otherwise youth-geared lineup of musical acts including Jesse McCartney on Friday, Feb. 27, Bloc Party on Thursday, March 19, Lady GaGa on Monday, March 30 and Katy Perry on Wednesday, April 1.

For those not in the know, Avalon (pictured above for a before-and-after reference) officially closed on Oct. 1, 2007 and was sold to the House of Blues by the Lyons Group. The former Lansdowne hot spot is currently being transformed into a live-music complex that will accommodate 2,500 including a VIP lounge and a 100-seat restaurant.

Boston faves the Dropkick Murphys will play six consecutive nights from Thursday, March 12 until Tuesday, March 17.

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of its album "Clarity" with a 10-city tour, Jimmy Eat World announced that they're playing on the HOB stage on Thursday, Feb. 26. Other previously announced acts set to play the soon-to-be-opened venue include B.B. King and Buddy Guy on Sunday, Feb. 22 and George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic on Wednesday, Feb. 25.

Click here for the lowdown on Boston's House of Blues.

UPDATE: At least one Loaded Gun reader says the new multi-use complex on Lansdowne Street is a victim of its own success. Boston's House of Blues' velvet rope beginnings?
Photos by Sam Baltrusis

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Will Steven Spielberg film 'Lincoln' in Taunton?

Folks out in nearby Taunton are buzzing over rumors that a film-location scout met with the Silver City's economic development director, Dick Shafer, to check out the area for an epic production about the Civil War and our 16th president, Abraham Lincoln.

While the director and the production remain unconfirmed, Shafer tells the Taunton Call that it's “a famous director, somebody as big as Scorsese."

Based on the info, the Taunton paper strongly believes that mega-director Steven Spielberg has sent out scouts for his announced film "Lincoln," a movie based on historian Doris Kearns Goodwin’s book, “Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln.” According to IMDB, Liam Neeson who worked with Spielberg on "Schindler's List" and Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln are rumored to be tied to the project slotted for a 2011 release.

The Three Mile River area, Old Colony Historical Society and the 620 Spring Street Industrial Complex in North Dighton (slotted for demolition) were checked out by the LA-based scout.

As I report here for the NYC-based Contentinople, Spielberg is currently scrambling to find a distributor for DreamWorks SKG after Universal announced on Friday that they have "ended discussions" with his boutique production company.

Click here for the lowdown.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Artist Shepard Fairey arrested en route to ICA

Shepard Fairey, a renegade-turned-celeb street artist known for his red, white and blue "Hope" and "Change" posters that became a national symbol of the Barack Obama presidency, was arrested last night heading inside to his sold-out "Experiment" gig at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) located at 100 Northern Ave. where he was scheduled to DJ.

"On Friday night artist Shepard Fairey was arrested by Boston police in connection with his efforts posting his art in various areas around the city," the ICA says in a statement. "He was released a few hours later."

Fairey, who was unable to attend the ICA event because of the arrest, has spent the last two weeks in Boston installing his solo museum exhibit and unveiling a slew of public art pieces including a 50-foot banner on the side of Boston's City Hall and murals on the Tufts University campus.

Known for his cover art for The Smashing Pumpkins, Anthrax and Led Zeppelin, Fairey also created Time magazine's 2008 "Person of the Year" cover.

Click here for more on Fairey's exhibit at the ICA.

Randy Price leaves anchor desk at WHDH-TV

Randy Price, a co-anchor at WHDH-TV and a longtime Boston-area TV news personality, is leaving his post at Channel 7 "effective immediately," reports Scott Kearnan at Bay Windows.

Price, who officially left on Friday even though he had three years left on his contract, co-anchored his last normal evening news slot on Thursday.

Price, currently living in Kittery, Maine, first made a splash in 1983 as a morning anchor with WBZ-TV. In 1995, he hit a turning point in his career after police arrested him on his second drunken-driving charge. Since the incident, he's been sober for 13 years. In 1996, he joined WHDH as a freelancer and eventually moved into the evening news chair in 1998.

Considered to be the country's first openly gay newscaster, Price has been a trailblazer in the GLBT community. In 2007, he led the state's fight for equal rights for same-sex partners when he married his significant other, Mark Steffan, in front of the Massachusetts State House.

Price, who was replaced on Friday by the 10 p.m. co-anchor on CW56 Kim Khazei, consistently scored high ratings in the 11 p.m. position with Frances Rivera.

In a recent feature also written by Kearnan in the January/February edition of Boston Spirit Magazine, Price weighs in on his life in the public eye.

"As a public person, people learn a lot about you," he tells Kearnan. "At some point you’re either going to be out, or you’re going to be a liar."

UPDATE: The Boston Herald reports that Price was ousted from WHDH-TV. “I’m gone,” Price tells the Herald this morning. “I’ve reached the point where I really can’t contribute in the way that they probably want me to contribute.”

Click here for more on Price.
Photo source

Friday, February 06, 2009

Made-in-Boston 'Ghosts of Girlfriends Past' trailer

"The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past," which once again transforms Boston into NYC, was filmed in the Hub for three months beginning last February.

A bachelor played by Matthew McConaughey is haunted by the ghosts of his past girlfriends (including Ben Affleck's wife Jennifer Garner) at his younger brother's wedding, awakening feelings for his first love. Michael Douglas, Anne Archer and Robert Forster co-star in this made-in-Boston flick.

Think Ebenezer Scrooge and "A Christmas Carol" but with a helluva hotter looking leading man.

Speaking of the film's lead, McConaughey spills about his character Connor Mead on his MySpace blog here. "It's cool being in a very edgy comedy where the dialogue and situations skirt that R-rated innuendo," he writes. "My character ... is cynical about the promises of [marriage] ... Until all those damn ghosts of my girlfriends come visit me and scare the you know what outta me. Hopefully I'll make it out alive."

Filming locations include Sonsie, 327 Newbury St., the Leather District's South Street near South Station and the Crane Estate's Crane Mansion in Ipswich. While filming on Newbury Street, Garner made a dash to the North Face store for a winter jacket.

"The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past" hits theaters on Friday, May 1.

Oscar nominee Michael Shannon hits Brandeis

Continuing their successful "Chasing Oscar" series focusing on serious contenders for this year's Academy Awards, Brandeis University hosts Oscar nominee Michael Shannon.

The "actor in a supporting role" nominee will screen his buzzworthy performance in "Revolutionary Road," a role opposite Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio, starting at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 12 at the Edie and Lew Wasserman Cinematheque, 415 South St. in Waltham.

Shannon is an acclaimed actor on both the stage and screen. The 35-year-old Academy Award nominee originated the role of Peter Evans in "Bug" on the stage, and has appeared on screen in "Groundhog Day," "Pearl Harbor," "8 Mile," "Vanilla Sky" and "World Trade Center."

The event is the fifth installment of the popular "Chasing Oscar" series. The university successfully hosted a slew of celebrities in 2008 including "What Doesn't Kill You" actor Mark Ruffalo, "Nothing But The Truth" actors Alan Alda and Kate Beckinsale as well as "Frozen River" Oscar nominee Melissa Leo.

"This series has brought some of the most important and exciting films and filmmakers in the world to Brandeis, and it has not only the campus but the entire city of Boston buzzing," says Alice Kelikian, an associate professor of history and chair of the film department at Brandeis University.

The screening of "Revolutionary Road" and the Q&A with Shannon is free and open to the public but Brandeis' film students get preference in seating at the Edie and Lew Wasserman Cinematheque, 415 South St. in Waltham. Student tickets are available for pick-up on Tuesday, Feb. 10, from 1:30-2:30 p.m. in Olin-Sang 219.

Click here for the lowdown.
Image courtesy Paramount Vantage

Thursday, February 05, 2009

GQB takes over Lansdowne's Tequila Rain

Making a return trip to Lansdowne's Fenway Park area, Guerrilla Queer Bar plans to take over Tequila Rain, 3 Lansdowne St. for their Friday, Feb. 6 straight bar takeover.

The group attracted a max-capacity crowd the last time they were there on Friday, April 4. In fact, one Loaded Gun reader says he was turned away from the bash.

"F@%* Tequila Rain," he writes here. "[They] didn't let me in for the GQB with my German passport ... said only American passport or [a] driver's license accepted. Shame on you!"

Tequila Rain, known for its drunken Spring Break revelry 52 weeks a year, has some odd dress code rules that solidifies its straight-bar rep, including no sneakers after 8 p.m. and a ban on sleeveless T-shirts.

Click here for the Boston Guerrilla Queer Bar lowdown.
Photo by Sam Baltrusis

'Pink Panther 2' gives Boston a French accent

OK, the reviews are in and the made-in-Boston flick "The Pink Panther 2" hitting theaters tomorrow Friday, Feb. 6 is anything but pretty in pink.

"Plays like a series of disconnected, hit-or-miss skits in a cut-rate 'Saturday Night Live,'" writes Michael O'Sullivan, a critic with the Washington Post.

Following the formula of the string of less-than-stellar locally-shot films--like "The Women," "Paul Blart: Mall Cop" and "Bride Wars"--the film was made in the Hub to take advantage of our state's insanely low tax breaks ... but set in another city.

As previously reported in Loaded Gun,"Pink Panther 2" attempts to transform Boston into Paris.

In the flick, Martin's Jacques Clouseau teams up with a squad of bumbling International detectives in an attempt to stop a globe-trotting thief who specializes in stealing historical artifacts.

The good news is several Boston-area landmarks are showcased in the film ... although they've been given a French manicure.

Other than the warehouse-turned-film set in Chelsea, locations include the Citi Wang Center, 270 Tremont St. (the Petit Palais substitute in the movie where Martin takes an epic plunge hanging from a water hose); the Boston Convention Center, 415 Summer St., the Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave.; Copley Square in the Berkeley Street area and the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston Street.

While filming at the Boston Public Library, there were reports that a priceless marble bust was knocked on the floor of the Grand Staircase in September 2007. The statue was damaged but not from the "Pink Panther 2" film crew. A spokesperson for the BPL blames it on art vandals.

Click here for the latest on "Pink Panther 2."
Photo source Sony Pictures

James Franco receives Harvard's Hasty award

James Franco, known for his work as Harry Osborn in the "Spider-Man" trilogy, his acclaimed performance in the film "Milk" and his Golden Globe-winning portrayal of James Dean on TNT, will receive Harvard's Hasty Pudding Theatrical's 2009 Man of the Year award next Friday, Feb. 13.

As previously reported in Loaded Gun, Renee Zellweger will receive her Pudding Pot on Thursday, Feb. 5--an honor given by Harvard's undergraduate drama troupe--preceded by a parade in Cambridge's Harvard Square where the star will be escorted in a convertible followed by several Harvard men dressed in drag. The Hasty Pudding ceremony will take place at the university's renovated New College Theatre, 10-12 Holyoke St.

Last year, Christopher Walken and Charlize Theron were honored as the Hasty Pudding Theatricals’ Man and Woman of the Year.

Click here for the lowdown on Harvard's Hasty Pudding.

UPDATE: Zellweger rode in the back of a silver convertible Bentley during the chilly parade through Harvard Square. Click here for a photo from the event.

The week in quotes from Hollywood in the Hub

"These dudes were acting like I walked in the bar with a Yankees jersey on."

--Brody Jenner, known for his bad boy antics on "The Hills" and his latest MTV reality show "Bromance," responds to a verbal assault at Bocelli's Restaurant in Medford while courting "Bromance" winner Luke Verge in the season finale.

“When I saw (Paul Blart) I guess I could say it sure looked familiar."

--Alfred Thomas Catalfo, a writer and attorney in Dover, N.H., tells the Herald that the made-in-Massachusetts flick "Paul Blart: Mall Cop" may be a rip off of his previously-submitted script called "Mall Cop."

"I don't anticipate any screenings of 'The Maiden Heist' in the near future."

--Yari Film Group's Emily Lambert e-mails the Globe saying that the made-in-Boston flick "The Maiden Heist," slotted to be unveiled at Worcester's Hanover Theatre at 7:30 p.m. March 7, 2009 , may not see the light of day.

“That was all her. We found out about it the next day.”

--Hasty Pudding Theatricals President David J. Andersson says Renee Zellweger--their Woman of the Year slotted to get her Pudding Pot on Thursday, Feb. 5--spilled the beans about her award to Dave Letterman on the "Late Show" before the Hasty Pudding crew could alert the press.

"[T]he role required a bad ass skater and well, I fit the bill.I really enjoyed my time in Boston working on the movie. I was there for the entire production and enjoyed the process and just tried to be a good soldier."

--Mike Vallely, "Drive on Fuel TV" host and lead singer for Revolution Mother, says his role as skateboarder Rudolph in "Paul Blart: Mall Cop" was a perfect fit.

``I’ve always loved to dance. That’s why I entered dirty-dancing contests."

--Eleanor Bergstein, writer and inspiration for the flick-turned-musical "Dirty Dancing," says she's smitten with the stage version of her dirty-dancing past hitting the Boston Opera House on Saturday, Feb. 7.
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