January 9, 2007 | Comments ()

By Dustin Rowles | Trade News | January 9, 2007 |


Last weekend, before Because I Said So, I saw the trailer for this summer’s Nancy Drew, and it’s just about as sad as you can imagine. The powers that be have taken a pretty decent teenage detective heroine and tweenified her, ditching the original premise in favor of a generic fish-out-of-water small-town girl moving-to-L.A. and dealing-with-fashion-faux-pas flick. The murder mystery seems secondary at best. It looks like a really pathetic version of Clueless for the Vacant-Stare Generation™, right down to another bad cover of “Kids in America.”

I mention this only as a segue to this tidbit: There is much unfounded speculation that Ben Stiller’s next project will be a buddy comedy with Tom Cruise, in which the two will update the freakin’ Hardy Boys with a film titled Hardy Men. Personally, I didn’t bother with either the Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew (I was an Encyclopedia Brown guy, through and through), but I can sort of envision (ever-so-briefly) a film like Hardy Men working as an action comedy, a smart satire with frequent nods to the classic novels and maybe a cool Zero Effect mystery (maybe Stiller will even pull out his old Tom Cruise impression for a bit of meta joy). Unfortunately, that’s not what this flick will be; Shawn Levy (Night at the Museum) is rumored to be the director, so I suspect it’ll mostly be about talking animals and flatulence. It’s meant to be a role that will repair Tom Cruise’s image, but as damn near the last leading man left who hasn’t passed gas for the masses, it may finally strip him of the last shred of dignity Scientology hasn’t taken away. So, something to look forward to, folks. Like cancer.

As for last weekend’s box office, there wasn’t much to it, but I suppose we’ll go through the motions anyway: The Messengers opened at number one, with close to $15 million in receipts; Dylan McDermott is now a bona fide film star! With his kind of box-office clout, I think we can now start to look forward to a sequel to his remake of Miracle on 34th Street titled The Has-Beens of 35th Street. Diane Keaton and Mandy Moore flopped in at number two with Because I Said So, a film I reviewed just one week ago and now have absolutely no memory of.

Sadly, I feel that the memory of this weekend’s Norbit will leave permanent scars that years of therapy, electroshock, and brain damage will not erase. I can’t wait! Also on tap, Hannibal Rising, yet another entry into Thomas Harris’ Silence of the Lambs franchise, this one about Hannibal Lector’s coming-of-age years. I understand he was a pretty average teenager who loved baseball, trips to the mall, and — of course — removing and braising the bowels of his classmates. I do believe we’ll also have our review of Factory Girl up over the weekend, which — as you might recall — is about the life of Edie Sedgwick, who is not married to Kevin Bacon. It stars Sienna Miller, Jimmy Fallon, Mena Suvari, and Mary-Kate Olsen in the role of her career, a heartbreaking performance that you can watch in its entirety here:

And, for your enjoyment, here is that trailer from this summer’s Nancy Drew flick.

Dustin Rowles is the publisher of Pajiba. He lives with his wife in Ithaca, New York. You may email him, or leave a comment below.

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The Case of the Disappearing Dignity

The Daily Trade Round-Up / Dustin Rowles

Trade News | January 9, 2007 | Comments ()



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