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Hollywood Digest

By PAT NASON, UPI Hollywood Reporter   |   Sept. 24, 2002 at 5:57 PM   |   Comments

JACKSON ACCEPTS 'BARBERSHOP' APOLOGY

Jesse Jackson has accepted the apology of two movie producers for offensive remarks contained in the current box-office hit "Barbershop," but he said an apology is not enough.

Producers Bob Teitel and George Tillman have acknowledged that some jokes made by a character played by Cedric the Entertainer were out of bounds. The jokes referred to the sex life of the late civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and suggested that Rosa Parks became a civil rights icon because she had pull at the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Jackson said the apology was a step in the right direction, but he is insisting that the jokes be cut from televised and home video versions of the movie.


ANOTHER 'GLADIATOR'

Plans are under way for a sequel to "Gladiator," which won the Oscar for best picture of 2000.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the sequel will tell a story that takes place 15 years after the death of General Maximus Decimus Meridus, played by Russell Crowe.

DreamWorks Pictures and Universal Pictures, which partnered on "Gladiator," have hired John Logan to write the screenplay. Logan, collaborating with David Franzoni and William Nicholson, was nominated for an Oscar for the "Gladiator" screenplay. He also wrote "The Time Machine" (2002) and "Any Given Sunday" (1999).


IT'S HERE

As "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" launches its seventh season on prime time with Tuesday night's season premiere on UPN, fans of the show can finally get their hands on the soundtrack from last season's Emmy-nominated musical episode "Once More, With Feeling."

The album, in stores Tuesday, includes all the songs from the episode -- in which the people of the fictional town of Sunnydale are caught in a spell that makes them break into song. All the songs were written by series creator Joss Whedon, who told the Los Angeles Times it had long been a fantasy of his to tell a "Buffy" story almost entirely in song.

Whedon described himself as a lifelong musical-theater fan who took part in high school productions of "West Side Story" and "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying."


CURTIS IN 'FREAKY FRIDAY' FOR BENING

Jamie Lee Curtis ("True Lies," "Halloween") has replaced Annette Bening ("American Beauty") in the cast of "Freaky Friday."

Bening left the project last week for reasons that were never announced. The movie is a remake of the 1976 movie of the same name, that starred Barbara Harris and Jodie Foster as a mom and daughter who swapped bodies for one day.

It was remade for TV in 1995, starring Shelley Long and Gaby Hoffman.

The new version stars Lindsay Lohan as the daughter. She starred in Disney's 1998 remake of "The Parent Trap."


EMMY NUMBERS

The Emmy Awards telecast bounced back from its hard-luck performance of 2001 to attract an audience in the neighborhood of 20 million for NBC Sunday night.

The network said it estimated that as many as 45 million tuned in to at least part of the three-hour telecast. When the final numbers come in, "The 54th Annual Prime Time Emmy Awards" will probably be the second highest-rated Emmys telecast in the last six year.

It is also the third most-watched awards program of the 2002 awards season -- behind only the Academy Awards and the Golden Globes.


NOLTE IN REHAB

Oscar-nominated actor Nick Nolte ("Affliction," "The Prince of Tides") is being treated for substance abuse at a Connecticut rehab facility where such other stars as Billy Joel and Diana Ross have been treated in the past.

A spokesman for Nolte said the actor checked himself into Silver Hill Hospital on Sept. 14 -- three days after he was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence.

"Nick Nolte voluntarily entered Silver Hill Hospital to receive advice and counsel that he feels he needs at this time," said the spokesman, Paul Bloch. "He will be there as long as he feels is necessary."


ELVIS IS STILL A HOT PROPERTY

On the day that "Elvis -- 30 #1 Hits" arrives in record stores, there's word that Paramount Pictures is planning a remake of one of the King's more highly regarded movies, the 1958 drama "King Creole."

In the last movie he made before the U.S. Army drafted him, Presley starred as a young nightclub singer who gets pulled into the criminal underworld in New Orleans.

© 2002 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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