Katherine Heigl

Jennys Wedding

Katherine Heigl, formerly of Grey’s Anatomy, formerly of Judd Apatow and Seth Rogen‘s good graces, formerly of a slew of successful romantic comedies and currently of a Nyquil commercial and some truly unfortunate casting choices, has a new film on the way. Called Jenny’s Wedding, Heigl stars as a lesbian who has been hiding her sexuality from her family for years, until she decides to take the next step in her relationship with her longtime girlfriend, Kitty, played by Alexis Bledel (Gilmore Girls, Mad Men). The news of Jenny’s impending nuptials is enough to tear her family apart, especially since they’re small-town conservatives who have believed up until this point that their daughter’s girlfriend is her roommate. Sounds like a cute little wedding flick that plays right into Heigl’s repertoire. Here’s the kicker. The film is up on Indiegogo to the tune of raising $150,000 to cover post-production costs. Despite the relatively big-named cast (Tom Wilkinson and Grace Gummer are also in the mix), a writer and director who’s been around the genre several times in fully funded productions — Mary Agnes Donoghue of Beaches, White Oleander, Deceived and Paradise — and already completed shooting, the film’s producers are relying heavily on the fundraising site to cover a pretty hefty chunk of their expenses.

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Stars used to fade away. Now they get second and third careers on TV. Katherine Heigl is the latest failed film actor to retreat (back) to the small screen. In the three years since she left Grey’s Anatomy, the show that made her famous and won her an Emmy, Heigl’s reverse-alchemied a once promising film career into a national punchline. Despite Heigl’s runner-up status to the title of America’s Most Hated Actress, second only to Gwyneth Paltrow (GOOP could never lose that crown), her new Homeland/Scandal-hybrid show – a procedural that “focuses on how the CIA handles hotspots around the globe, with Heigl playing an adviser/communications liaison for the U.S. president,” according to Deadline Hollywood – is drawing competitive bids from NBC and cable networks. That multiple suits are interested in throwing millions of dollars at Public Enemy #2 to appear in front of the cameras begs the question: Can TV be its own celebrity rehab? After all, the check-signers are counting on the fact that audiences will come around on the tantrum-prone actress.

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What is Casting Couch? It’s the casting news roundup that’s ready for the weekend. Colin Firth is kind of a sneaky hunk. At first glance he’s pretty handsome, but not the most attractive dude in the world, and then he’s got this charm to him that just grows on you until you’ve scrawled his name on all of your Trapper Keepers. He’s such saucy dish that it looks like he can make even a big name star like Nicole Kidman develop a schoolgirl crush. THR is reporting that she liked playing his wife in the recent World War II drama The Railway Man so much that she’s now actively recruiting him to join her in her next project, Before I Go to Sleep. Apparently, Before I Go to Sleep is an adaptation of a S.J. Watson novel about an amnesiac woman whose husband must reintroduce himself to her every morning. Early attempts at titling the film The Rich Man’s 50 First Dates were reportedly rejected by the studio.

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Barnabas Collins by Tim Burton

What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly collection of movie news, stories, articles, happenings and thingamajigs that is not interested in your excuses, just your unwavering loyalty. We begin tonight with a new look at Johnny Depp as Barnabas Collins in Dark Shadows, courtesy of Hollywood Elsewhere’s ability to scan a page of the upcoming issue of Vanity Fair. It’s quite retro, somewhat chic, a lot emo and… oh, those bangs. Depp truly does have a bit of a Nosferatu thing going on, which is refreshing. At least he doesn’t sparkle.

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Way back in 2008, the Jim Henson Co. picked up a spec script from Todd Berger that took a standard Muppet trope (a world where people and puppets co-exist and no one thinks it’s weird), turned it on its head (the puppets are treated like second-class citizens), then splashed blood all over that turned head (the puppet stars of a cancelled kids television show start to get killed off), and then threw in some classic crime noir (“a disgraced detective-turned-private eye puppet takes on the case”). But since that first bit of news about The Happytime Murders, information has been relatively soft (as felt), until today’s brief that IM Global is taking the film (with attached director Brian Henson) to the Berlin International Film Festival next week in hopes of selling it. While that’s certainly good news, it does come with a caveat – as Deadline Rotterdam claims that “Kathryn Heigl is in advanced negotiations to star,” but maybe there’s some other actress out there named Kathryn Heigl that is an up-and-comer who is super into puppets…or maybe that’s just another one of those little Deadline mistakes that will get corrected without a word later today. Fine, it’s Katherine Heigl who might star in The Happytime Murders, and even if she’s going to be portrayed as a puppet, that’s just unsuitable casting.

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Kevin Carr

This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr tapes some alcohol bottles to his knuckles and gets ready to brawl with wolves. Unfortunately, he first drinks all the booze in the bottles and ends up passing out in the snow. When he wakes up, he brushes himself off and heads downtown to climb on the ledge of a tall building. The police are called to try and save him, but Kevin ends up jumping when he learns that Katherine Heigl is brought in to talk him down. Fortunately, Kevin survives the fall and stumbles to the local multiplex to check out this week’s new movies.

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One for the Money

For those of you who may not be aware, this weekend’s new release One for the Money is based on a series of books about struggling bounty hunter Stephanie Plum written by Janet Evanovich. I’ve read them all, as well as most of Evanovich’s other work and I’d definitely count myself a fan. The writing, which admittedly gets better as the series goes along, is sharp and witty and fun to read. Unfortunately the film version turned out flat and tepid and very middle of the road.

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The Reject Report - Large

Not to be confused with Reject Report, The White, which is what happens after we do battle with the Balrog. Reject Report, The White is never NEVER wrong. But in our current form we have to take into account things like star power and demographics and mass appeal, the kinds of aspects that go into making a film financially successful. This week sees three new movies wanting that success and one Oscar contender expanding to wide release. Liam Neeson fights wolves, Sam Worthington faces a ledge, and Katherine Heigl takes on…money, I guess. I’m not really sure. Only one of these movies can be the victor while the other two scrounge for scraps to make up $10-15m. Not even worth the effort really. It’s the Reject Report, and you shall not pass. Okay, now you can pass. Go ahead.

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Here’s something sort of bizarre – director Garry Marshall and writer Katherine Fugate‘s latest star-crammed desecration of random, non-religious holidays is not monumentally or irremediably terrible. It is also not good, but it’s certainly better than its predecessor, the rancid Valentine’s Day (though that’s not saying much). New Year’s Eve is not so much a film as a gimmick – tons of stars! lots of plots! all kind of connected! just one day! – and such a gimmick can yield some unexpectedly positive results just as often as it can ending up being simply terrible entertainment not worthy of being called cinema. New Year’s Eve is not so much a film as a two-hour piece of wish fulfillment for the sort of people who read US Weekly on, well, a weekly basis. Unlike Valentine’s Day, its very existence is not offensive, but it’s bloated and kind of boring and really, just really, tremendously unnecessary.

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The horror…the horror… The best part about this poster for New Year’s Eve is either that it features all of the names and pictures of the actors, but not in the same order, or that the catchphrase “Let The Countdown Begin” lets us know that it’s a Doomsday Movie. Garry Marshall, who should be ashamed of himself for directing Valentine’s Day, proves once and for all that he owes some serious men down at the race track by stepping up to direct this sequel which seeks to squeeze even less screen time out for even more famous faces. Also, Homeless Hector Elizondo is kind of cruel considering they made everyone else look halfway decent (except for Ashton Kutcher who clearly didn’t show up for a photo shoot and forced the marketing department to find a paparazzi shot of him smiling). Enough with the words! Check it out for yourself, and feel free to largify it by clicking (if you dare):

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It’s time to crank up the Ol’ Dirty Bastard, imbibe in your favorite – LEGAL – activity, and start the baby making. In this week’s Commentary Commentary, we’re hitting up one of the best comedies of the past 10 years, Knocked Up. Aside from being one of the dozen films that have made Judd Apatow a vigintillionaire, apart from being the film that landed Seth Rogen on the A-list, the movie is just damned funny. Heart-warming, of course. What would an Apatow movie be without heart? Well, it would probably be You Don’t Mess With the Zohan, but we’re not even going to mention that abomination here. Just ignore that previous utterance of the title. Anyway, back to Knocked Up, Apatow has amassed a solid line-up for his commentary track. Rogen and co-star Bill Hader are on board to deliver their own stories and insight into the making of the film. Something tells me the commenting under the influence didn’t stop with last week’s movie. That Rogen sure likes to partake. He’s always stoned. And funny. Mostly funny. But one might have a hand in the other. So here’s what we learned from the commentary track to Knocked Up. Cue the ODB!

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Some pieces of news are just bound to cause eye-rolling and heavy sighs. I’m not going to pretend as if I am some huge Romancing the Stone fan and that every single one of my sensibilities and emotions are offended by this news, but that’s not really necessary, is it? This is the sort of news that will, most likely, not be met with an outpouring of glee. But this is not a new brand of news. The Romancing the Stone remake has been kicking around for years now, but without much of a push behind it. For awhile, Robert Luketic was attached to the film, and with him came the inevitable, a casting wish list that included Katherine Heigl (who Luketic has directed in two separate horror shows, The Ugly Truth and Killers). Though Luketic is now off the project, and Emma Watts and Fox are reportedly looking for “someone newish” to direct the film, Heigl is apparently still on the top of their wish lists to play the Joan Wilder role (played in the original by Kathleen Turner). And, somewhat bizarrely considering how different the two men are in terms of both age and star power, Watts and Fox have added Gerard Butler and Taylor Kitschto their “early wish list” to play Jack Colton (originally played by Michael Douglas). As The Playlist wisely points out, “this [is] all tremendously early, and possibly none of these names will make it through,” but these sorts of supposed “wish lists” show the […]

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If the multiple storylines, loose connections, and a total lack of chemistry of Valentine’s Day was simply not enough for you, director Garry Marshall has yet another holiday-themed film for the masses – twice the storylines! twice the loose connections! twice the total lack of chemistry! Wait, that math isn’t right. Even less chemistry! Everyone, meet New Year’s Eve. Like last year’s chillingly empty Valentine’s Day, Marshall’s latest film tracks a group of romantically challenged love losers across the course of one holiday. Will they find love? Will I hiss in the theater again? When is he making Flag Day? New Year’s Eve moves the action to New York City, though it inexplicably features two stars of VD (Ashton Kutcher and Jessica Biel) who appear to be playing totally different roles than in the previous film. If that hints at some sort of alternate universe, well, that’s still not very interesting to me. The really strange part about this trailer is the sense it gives off that all of its many stars were thrown into a blender, set to “frappe,” and poured out onto the pages of the script. How else can we possibly account for a film that pairs up Katherine Heigl with Jon Bon Jovi, Michelle Pfeiffer with Zac Efron, Lea Michele with Ashton Kutcher, or Jessica Biel with Seth Meyers? And that’s only about a quarter of the cast, everyone else flew by so quickly that my own mother could be in this film, and I wouldn’t […]

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Justin Zackham, the director writer of The Bucket List, has a new indie comedy in the works that already boasts a pretty impressive cast. Gently Down the Stream will star Robert De Niro and Diane Keaton as a divorced couple who pretend that they are still married during their adopted sons wedding, in order to avoid offending his birth mother. Apparently she hates divorced people or something, even though giving a kid up for adoption is A-OK. I don’t know; I’m sure the movie will explain it better than I do. In addition to De Niro and Keaton, the film will also star two young, blonde actresses in Katherine Heigl and Amanda Seyfried. I find the inclusion of these two particular interesting because they are both good actresses who have done a string of really bad movies, and yet Heigl gets a really bad rap for her choices, but Seyfried’s haven’t seemed to have caught up with her yet. Perhaps the difference is that people really loved Seyfried in things like Mean Girls and Mama Mia! and nobody has really liked Heigl in anything since, uh, My Father the Hero? No, wait, she was the niece in Under Siege 2. That movie totally owned. Regardless, I have a weird thing where I will see pretty much everything that Seyfried is in, no matter how bad it looks, but whenever I hear Heigl’s name I always groan. It will be interesting to hear how people respond to the news of this […]

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Author Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series of mystery novels are big sellers. There’s about a million of them published at this point and they should have big name recognition around the world. Why, then, is a film adaptation having so much trouble getting a release date? One for the Money stars Katherine Heigl in the lead role, has already been made, and was originally slated to come out on July 8th of this year. It was recently moved up for release on June 3rd in order to avoid stiff comedic competition from Sony’s The Zookeeper and Warner Bros. Horrible Bosses on the weekend of the 8th. Okay, that makes sense I guess. Although I can’t imagine One for the Money is going to be as broadly comedic as those two films, there seems like there could be a hefty crossover audience. Release on June 3rd would have pit it against on X-Men: First Class, a bit of counter programming that makes sense. Some people, maybe ladies, maybe people sick of super hero movies, aren’t going to allow themselves to be dragged to another X-Men film. A Katherine Heigl as a bail bondswoman pic could be a strong alternative. Why then, has it now been removed from that date? This is possibly a franchise film. It’s something with a built-in fanbase. And yet, Lionsgate keeps waffling. At this point the movie doesn’t have a scheduled release at all. What are we to take from this? A Lionsgate rep told Entertainment Weekly, […]

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr horses around this week with the legendary racehorse from the 1970s, hoping he too can go home with Diane Lane. After racing out to see Secretariat, he wonders if Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel would be anything more than a pretty couple. Then he gets down on his knees and prays: “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I beg you skip My Soul to Take.”.

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Once Upon a Time, director Andy Tennant directed a sweet little film called Ever After, a reinterpretation of the Cinderella fairy tale. It was a charming and enjoyable film. That was in 1998. Let’s fast forward with a screech to Tennant’s latest effort, the dismal The Bounty Hunter starring Gerard Butler and Jennifer Aniston.  It co-starred the Seaford-Oyster Bay Expressway near my home. It was the best part of the film. Just sitting there thinking, “Hey, I know that stand of trees!” was more entertaining than the horrible script the two lead actors were well compensated for suffering through. Well, Tennant is back, this time teaming with Katherine Heigl (Grey’s Anatomy, 27 Dresses). The pair are working on Adaline, a fantasy about a beautiful woman who hasn’t aged for one hundred years. She meets a man who risks his life to help her regain her mortality.

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kevin-reportcard-header

This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr grades four new films: Get Him to the Greek, Splice, Marmaduke and Killers.

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Fat Guys at the Movies

Neil makes a triumphant return to the Magical Studio in the Sky and celebrates the occassion by seeing one of the four movies opening this week. Sadly, Kevin is not that much farther ahead, having only seen one and 9/10th of another due to a freak lightning storm.

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Over the years, it’s likely that you’ve become accustomed to disregarding any romantic comedy starring Katherine Heigl. However, this Greg Berlanti directed comedy Life As We Know It might be her saving grace.

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published: 11.26.2014
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published: 11.26.2014
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published: 11.21.2014
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published: 11.21.2014
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