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Hollywood Digest

By PAT NASON, UPI Hollywood Reporter   |   Feb. 27, 2003 at 3:25 PM   |   Comments

'GUYS AND DOLLS' IS NEXT

Daily Variety reported Thursday that Miramax Films is in final talks for the rights to a movie remake of "Guys and Dolls."

The studio is basking in the glow of critical and commercial success for its movie version of the Broadway hit "Chicago." Variety said "Chicago" producers Craig Zadan and Neal Meron would produce the new version of "Guys and Dolls" -- a Broadway hit that was adapted for the screen in 1955, starring Marlon Brando, Jean Simmons, Frank Sinatra and Vivian Blaine.

Variety said Hollywood talent agencies are already beginning to buzz with casting possibilities -- particularly given the surprising song-and-dance performances in "Chicago" of Renée Zellweger, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Richard Gere.

"A lot of actors are coming forward who we never knew were capable of singing and dancing," Zadan said. "After 'Chicago' and 'Moulin Rouge,' they're going to their agents, saying, 'Hey, put me in a musical.' The musical is no longer defined as a niche area."

"Chicago" led this year's Oscar field with 13 Oscar nominations and is closing in on $100 million at the U.S. box office. The soundtrack CD has gone platinum.


JENNIFER GARNER WILL REPRISE 'DAREDEVIL' ROLE

Jennifer Garner's character may have died in "Daredevil," but Elektra Natchios will rise again for a movie of her own.

20th Century Fox has announced that Garner will star in a feature based in the character, the girlfriend of Ben Affleck's title character in "Daredevil." Elektra appeared to have been killed in the movie, but there was a suggestion in the final scene indicating that she survived.

The studio has also announced that there will be a "Daredevil" sequel.


WHO WILL PLAY THE MAN OF STEEL?

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Josh Hartnett has taken himself out of contention to star in a new "Superman" movie.

Hartnett ("Pearl Harbor," "Black Hawk Down") had taken a screen test for the project, according to The Reporter, before deciding he didn't want to play the Man of Steel.

Three actors are reportedly near the top of the list of choices to play Superman: Brendan Fraser, Paul Walker and Matthew Bomer.

Fraser and Walker already have action star credentials. Fraser starred in "The Mummy" and "The Mummy Returns," and Walker starred in "The Fast and the Furious" and the upcoming sequel "2 Fast, 2 Furious."

Bomer is known to daytime drama viewers as Ben Reade on "The Guiding Light" or Ian Kipling on "All My Children."


TOM SELLECK RETURNING TO PRIME TIME SERIES?

Tom Selleck will shoot a comedy pilot for NBC, playing a former big league baseball player who manages a minor league team in his hometown.

Selleck should feel pretty comfortable in the baseball environment of the new show, "Touch 'Em all McCall." He who wore a Detroit Tigers cap in "Magnum, P.I." and played a big leaguer sent to play in Japan in the 1992 movie "Mr. Baseball."


STARS LINE UP FOR OSCARS

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced that Jim Carrey will be a presenter on the 75th Anniversary Academy Awards in Los Angeles.

It will be Carrey's fourth appearance as a presenter on the Oscars telecast. Carrey will show up in movie theaters this summer in the comedy "Bruce Almighty."

The Academy Awards will be presented on March 23 in ceremonies at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood, to be televised live on ABC.


HALLE BERRY WILL HEAD INDIE AWARDS

Halle Berry has been named honorary chair for the 2003 IFP Independent Spirit Awards, which will be presented in Santa Monica on March 22.

Organizers have announced that Adrien Brody, Daniel Day-Lewis, Robert Duvall and Sissy Spacek will be among the presenters. Filmmaker John Waters returns as emcee.


HONORS FOR JAMES SCHAMUS

The Writers Guild of America East has announced that it will honor "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" writer James Schamus with its Richard B. Jablow Award.

The award -- given in recognition of service to the guild -- is named for one of the guild's founding members.

Schamus, who is also co-president of Focus Features, executive produced director Ang Lee's "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" -- which he co-wrote with Wang Hui Ling and Tsai Kuo Jung. He produced and wrote Lee's upcoming movie, "The Hulk."

It's the latest in a long line of Lee-Schamus collaborations that includes "The Ice Storm," "Ride with the Devil" and "Sense and Sensibility."

Schamus will receive the Richard B. Jablow Award on March 8 at WGA ceremonies in New York.

© 2003 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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