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March 8, 2007 |

By Daniel Carlson | Industry | March 8, 2007 |

How do I begin to describe the kind of limitless ego that has ruined M. Night Shyamalan and turned a once-promising genre director into the kind of self-aggrandizing whore whose projects now fill me with the kind of dread usually reserved for tax day and torture-porn? Maybe this will help: In a town full of liars, thieves, and solipsistic braggarts, this guy stands out as being too full of himself. His troubled public history with various studios has led him from Disney to Warners to Fox, where he’s landed a spec script for The Happening, an R-level thriller that Shyamalan wrote and (surprise) will direct. Filming is set to commence in August, with a planned release date of June 2008. The Happening (was The Event a little too vague? What about Ominous Things That Will Probably Turn Out Badly?) is apparently about a family on the run from some as-yet-unnamed natural crisis that presents a “large-scale threat to humanity.” My money’s on global warming. There’s no word yet on just what kind of on-screen presence Shyamalan will have in the film, but it’s bound to be significant: He’s played roles of increasing importance in each of his films, from the doctor involved in the key scene in The Sixth Sense to the reckless driver involved in the key scene in Signs to the security guard involved in the key scene in The Village to, believe it or not, the man whose ideas will save all of humanity in Lady in the Water. Maybe the family in The Happening will spend 90 minutes running from Shyamalan’s swollen head. That’d be worth the ticket price.

And now for what we all came here for: hardcore male nudity! It was announced this week that Ken Davitian — better known as everyone’s favorite overweight, short, balding, bear-killing pervert, Azamat the producer from Borat — has been cast in the upcoming big-screen version of Get Smart, joining Steve Carell and Anne Hathaway in a comedic romp sure to rob the memory of Don Adams of whatever dignity managed to survive his years on “Inspector Gadget.” Terrence Stamp will play the head of the evil KAOS, and Davitian will play his sidekick, presumably costumed in the same musty suit Davitian has worn on “Six Feet Under,” “Gilmore Girls,” and pretty much every other role he’s ever had. I don’t know about you, but for me the sight of Davitian’s hairy torso bounding up and down as he almost 69’d the equally hirsute Sacha Baron Cohen was one of the more stirring cinematic experiences of last year, and one can only hope that Get Smart will at least allow Davitian one last hand-party with Pamela while Carell and Hathaway stand and look on in awe and horror.

And, finally, a little absurdity: I have no idea how the characters from “Aqua Teen Hunger Force” are going to survive for 90 minutes on the big screen; I have a feeling that even the highest members of the audience are going to get a little punchy less than an hour in. Still, those little 15-minute blasts of Meatwad are usually pretty entertaining, and this trailer for Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film For Theaters isn’t too bad. If nothing else, you should go see the movie so that the terrorist strike on Boston won’t be in vain:

Daniel Carlson is the managing editor of Pajiba and a low-level employee at a Hollywood industry magazine. You can visit his blog, Slowly Going Bald.

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