THE INSIDER Who’s getting up to what
I Hollywood's really starting to get a handle on the internet. Five studios — Warner. Paramount. Universal. Sony and MGM — have opened an online box office operation. Movrelink. in an effort to Curb the perceived threat of web piracy. Fears that movie industhy profits will suffer in the same way the music industry has through peer-to- peer swap sites such as the now defunct Napster have prompted the studios to combine forces and sell titles Such as cean's Eleven, A Beautiful Mind and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone on a pay to play bass (similar to renting a vrdeor. MOVielink chief Jim Ramo said: ‘We think we are early enough in the cultural usage of movies on the web that we are able to make the pirates deviants.’ Insider's not so Sure. That phrase about chickens.
hatching and c0unting comes to mind.
I But Hollywood web activities have been more devious than what's described above. Recalling earlier covert operations to sell movies to the public — fake film revrews. 'punters' giving good word of mouth who turned out to be in the employ of studies — a number of favourable web postings. mostly to do with Universal films. have been appearing. Back in
July someone called fangorrat 7 wrote:
‘I can't wait until Red Dragon comes out this fall. I watched the trailer for it [websne address duly supplied] and it got me really excrted. Check it out.‘ This and other similar postings aroused the suspicion of Chris Parry. editor of efilirtcriticcom. who traced the messages back to MCAcom. none other than the corporate site of Universal Pictures. Naughty or merely smart marketing strategy?
I From devrous to outright nefarious: Last month a man was found dead in a cafe in Kwaniu. South Korea. That's probably happened before and not Just in Asia. What's new is the man was killed by computer games That's right. death by game play. Apparently the
Having a square Crowe
I You've probably heard the story reported during the recent London Film Festival abOut filmmaker Larry Clark (Kids). He got into an argument wrth Hamish McAlpine. the head of the UK distribution company releasing Clark's latest. Ken Park, and brought it to an abrupt half by breaking McAlpine's nose before attempting to throttle him. McAlprne subsequently dumped Ken Park. saying he wouldn't represent the film of a man wrth racist vrews. ignoring Clark's offer to let him take a few free punches. Meanwhile. over in a posh Knightsbridge restaurant Russell Crowe. in town to attend the funeral of Gladiator co-star Richard Harris. was busy picking a fight With a New Zealand businessman following an argument With his female companion. Good job. then, EastEnders' hard lad Ross Kemp was on hand to break up the scrap. from which Crowe emerged cut and bruised.
unemployed South Korean had been stuck to a console for four days non- stop. depriving hirr‘self of healthy food and sleep. before he passed out. briefly regained corrsciousness and later died in the cafe toilet. And this isn't an isolated incident. Earlier this year a louisiana mother sued Nintendo for 'unspecified darnages' following the death of her son who had regularly been gaming for 48 hours a '.veek. There's no doubt in Insider's mind that sorrre cunning film executive wrll make a conspiracy theory chiller about killer computer games.
I Moving on from violence to sex. it’s good to see that the British Board of Film Classification has passed uncut Gaspar Noe's ititl"()‘.'-.’lllt] rape revenge filrn Irreversible. Ignore
Alexander \i’i/alker's ridiculous rant
about Noes film and others like it (meaning explicit arthouse films such as The Porrrographeri being a corrupting influence on filirrgoers. Instead. if you appreciate challenging cinema. go see Irreversible sans censorial cuts.
I It's a shameful irony, then. that the government of trance ifrorn whence Irreversible cornesl is set to impose a blinding 93‘? tax on sexually explicit
films as part of an anti-
pornography drive led by the ruling (I()lif$()l\’£tilV()f§. Bummer. It gets \.v()r'se.
The government is also proposing a ban on books. Well hook specifically Hose Bonbon, a graphic portrait of a paedophile murderer. they rnrght as well go all
the way With book burnings. rallies. the lot.
‘Maybe he needs
a new brain
instead of a new
Jutta Hendrik-Schmidt. an eye Witness to Michael Jackson baby-dangling mayhem.
‘I put bubble bath in: it swamped me and water flooded the floor. It didn’t have a button to turn it off. I thought: “This isn’t me. I can’t die in a jacuzzi.”’
Will Young recalls how close he came to his demise. second only to Elvis for enibarrassment levels.
‘I couldn’t tell what he was saying but I thought it was rather odd.’
Hal/e Berry reveals that the Duke of Edinburgh spent the whole of the glit/v premiere of Die Another Day mumbling in his seat.
‘I know I had a lot of heavier women looking up to me. So they might be upset but by the same token we have health issues and if I could stay big and please everybody I would.’
A slimmed down Missy Elliott on the dilemma of losing so many pounds.
‘I had to clean out the sports cupboard. The teachers either suck up to me or they give me detention’
Harry Potter star Rupert Grint bemoans the fact that there's life beyond the big screen.
‘The difference between me and People magazine is that he’ll still be the sexiest man alive in my eyes when he’s 100 years old.’
Jennifer Lope/ clearly has an abundance of faith in
the ageing process
after her new bubble
Ben Affleck won the
People mag 's
incredible hunk vote.
J-Lo butts in on Ben
N». t.’ Ilium .‘ THE LIST 9