WHAT THE…? Was Matthew McConaughey rehearsing for a ”Dazed and Confused” sequel? The actor was arrested when police were called to his Austin, Tex., home at 3 a.m. Monday morning after neighbors complained about loud music, according to the Associated Press, and one officer arrived to find him dancing naked and playing the bongos while a friend did his own little jig and clapped. After the policeman smelled a faint pot odor and saw what he thought was a bowl of marijuana seeds, he arrested the naked star, who initially shouted at the cop and resisted getting in the police car but came along after another cop arrived, because even a naked, bongo-playing dude knows when the odds are stacked against him. Drug charges were dropped later Monday when authorities couldn’t find enough evidence, but the actor is still being charged with the misdemeanor of resisting transportation and was released from jail on a $1,000 bond. His lawyer claims that the police illegally searched his home and used excessive force.
CASTING Will Smith may star in a remake of the Cary Grant thriller ”Charade” for director Jonathan Demme…. In a teen dream-team matchup, Leelee Sobieski (”Joan of Arc”) and Thora Birch (”American Beauty”) will pair for ”Ghost World,” which follows the lives of two high school grads from the point of view of the otherworldly spirit observing them. Terry Zwigoff (”Crumb”) is directing…. Rutger Hauer will start filming a sequel to 1986’s ”The Hitcher,” with the original director, Bob Harmon, at the helm. No word yet if C. Thomas Howell can clear a space on his calendar to come back, or whether he’s tied up with ”Soul Man 2”…. Janine Turner (”Northern Exposure”) is joining the ever-expanding cast of Robert Altman’s ”Dr. T and the Women”…. Terrence Howard (”The Best Man”) will play Muhammad Ali in an ABC TV movie based on David Remnick’s bio ”King of the World.”
TV SCHEDULING LIFE AND DEATH Fox has canceled ”Harsh Realm” and ”Ryan Caulfield: Year One” after only three and two episodes, respectively. Last week the two shows earned the network’s lowest ratings ever for a Friday night. Wounded ”Harsh” creator Chris Carter told Variety that Fox screwed up his show’s chances by underpromoting it. ”The viewer-awareness levels were pathetically low,” said Carter, ever the conspiracy theorist…. ”Angel” has been extended for the full season on the WB, thanks to ratings that beat ”Felicity”’s – the last owner of its time slot – by 43 percent…. ABC has pulled the underperforming ”Wasteland” off the schedule for November sweeps, but also extended ”Snoops” for the full season…. CBS has yanked the Kevin Pollak sitcom ”Work With Me.” Luckily, at least six episodes were taped, which will assure it a long and happy afterlife on USA.
JOB OPENING Finally copping to rumors that have been rampant for a month, Hole have admitted that bassist Melissa Auf Der Maur has left the band. In a statement, Courtney Love said, ”The fabulous Melissa is an extremely talented artist and wishes to grow in many different directions. We wish her well.” If you want to take her place and for some reason think Courtney would make an excellent boss, the band is holding a global search for a replacement: Send two copies of your photo, a bio explaining your style and influences, and a demo tape to: Bass Player, PMB 394, 2658 Griffith Park Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90039. And remember, it’s hardly punk rock to include a self-addressed stamped envelope.
CYBERMOGULS Steven Spielberg and Ron Howard are moving to the smallest of screens: The Internet. DreamWorks and Imagine Entertainment are teaming to create the website POP.com, which will broadcast short films on the Web and is aiming to launch next spring. Amateurs will be able to send in their own shorts (lasting from one to six minutes, and preferably comedy) to the site, and the gurus in charge will select the best for posting. ”I am… certain that new and unusual aesthetic values will quickly evolve,” said Howard, ”shaped by the medium itself, the public, and the creative collaborations which this company will encourage.”
KIDNAPPING After the wife of Los Lobos singer/guitarist Cesar Rosas was kidnapped on Saturday in Los Angeles, her half-brother has been arrested for the crime, although Sandra Rosas, 47, has not yet been found. Rosas’ kids came home Saturday night and found the front door ajar; her van was discovered 10 miles away with a broken window, according to Reuters. When her daughter called Sandra’s cell phone, the conversation convinced her that her mother was being held against her will, and she heard Rosas’ half-brother Gabriel Gomez in the background. (Detectives say they don’t have a motive yet for Gomez’s actions.) Cesar Rosas was on tour at the time, but told reporters, ”I’d like everybody to say a prayer that we get her back.”