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Clooney going to court vs. the Mel Gibson tapes.

There was something refreshingly old-fashioned, in this week of Mel Gibson, in the sight of George Clooney arriving at a Milanese courtroom to a press corps cluster so big the judge had to get a bigger space to accommodate all the journalists and paparazzi. Clooney showed up in his usual natty style, offering 90 minutes of testimony about the three men who'd allegedly forged Clooney's signature to fraudulently promote a clothing line in his name. He gave a few good lines -- "Nice to...

Seven actors who crossed the TV/movie line.

This weekend saw "Date Night" rocket to the top of the box-office, solidifying the future viability of Tina Fey and Steve Carell as theatrical attractions rather than stuck with bouncing from one TV show to another for the next fifty years. (Promoting the film, Fey returned to "Saturday Night Live" as some kind of new cultural hero). Some TV legends -- Lucille Ball, Andy Griffith -- are perfectly content to stick to the tube, only occasionally attempting the odd supporting role...

Seven deliberately anachronistic movies.

In a long, fascinating interview with DP Harris Savides at Moving Image Source, Savides -- one of the best cinematographers we have -- talks about how much of his recent work ("Zodiac," "Greenberg," "Milk," "American Gangster") has, in one way or another, drawn from the '70s. There's a startling side-by-side comparison of a Stephen Shore photo from 1975 above a still from "Zodiac," which momentarily looks exhumed from the era. Savides, of...

Watching your younger self on screen.

In an interview with the Independent, Shirley MacLaine reveals what might possibly be the only interesting thing about the big, bloated "Valentine's Day" monster coming our way. During an argument with her husband (played by director Garry Marshall's good-luck charm Hector Elizondo), the 1958 film "Hot Spell" screens in the background -- representing the couple's on-screen marriage, sure, but also showing us how much/little MacLaine's changed in fiftysomething...
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