News Roundup: Director Bob Clark dies in car accident |


News Roundup: Director Bob Clark dies in car accident

Plus: Bernie Mac developing NBC reality show, ''Heroes'' star Ventimiglia tapped for horror movie, Warner adapting ''Metal Men,'' and more...

Bob Clark

(Mike Guastella/

Director Bob Clark killed in car accident
Director Bob Clark (A Christmas Story) and his son Ariel died in a car accident on Wednesday (April 4) while driving on the Pacific Coast Highway in Pacific Palisades. Clark, 67, and Ariel, 22, were driving in a 1997 Infiniti Q-30 sedan when they were struck head-on by a GMC Yukon. The driver, Hector Velazquez-Nava, 24, of Los Angeles, survived and was booked on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, vehicular manslaughter, and operating a vehicle on a suspended license. In addition to Christmas Story, Clark also produced the Porky’s movies, along with dozens of others. (L.A. Times)

Sandler tapped for Bedtime Stories
Adam Sandler will return to comedy as the star of Bedtime Stories, which Adam Shankman (Hairspray, Cheaper by the Dozen 2) is directing for Disney. Sandler will play a real estate developer who finds that the elaborate bedtime stories he tells his niece and nephew are coming true. Matt Lopez wrote the script. Sandler’s Happy Madison Prods. will produce with Andrew Gunn’s Gunn Films. Disney plans on a holiday 2008 release date. (Variety)

Bernie Mac developing reality pilot for NBC
Bernie Mac and producer Ben Silverman are developing reality pilot Welcome to the Family for NBC. The show will feature couples that want to get married, but are dealing with the fact that they are of different religious, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds. Cameras will document the couples meeting each other’s families for the first time and telling them that they’ve gotten engaged. Silverman (Reveille) and Mac (MacMan Entertainment) will executive produce with creator Katy Wallin, Greg Johnston (MTV’s The Osbournes), Reveille’s H.T. Owens, and Mac’s producing partner Steven Greener. (Hollywood Reporter)

Heroes’ Ventimiglia tapped for horror movie
Milo Ventimiglia, who plays Peter Petrelli on Heroes, will star in Lakeshore Entertainment’s horror thriller Pathology. Alyssa Milano, Lauren Lee Smith (Trick ‘r Treat), and Johnny Whitworth (3:10 to Yuma) are already cast with Marc Schoelermann directing. The story is about a young intern (Ventimiglia) studying pathology at Philadelphia’s University Hospital who encounters a murderous group of colleagues that has devised a game to see who can commit the perfect murder. Milano will play Ventimiglia’s fiancee, while Smith and Whitworth are med students. Production is scheduled to start next month. (Hollywood Reporter)

Warner Bros. sets up Metal Men adaptation
Warner Bros. Pictures has set up a project to adapt the DC Comics robotic superhero team Metal Men into a movie with Lauren Shuler Donner (X-Men) producing and Eric Champnella brought on to write. Metal Men revolves around brilliant scientist William Magnus’ creations: six robots with powers associated with their respective metals — gold, iron, lead, tin, mercury, and platinum. Instead of having to be programmed, the Metal Men can think for themselves, which is both their genius and their biggest flaw. (Hollywood Reporter)

Friends co-creator enters reality game
Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman will executive produce Gifted, an unscripted project for Fox in which people who believe they have psychic abilities are tested to determine the most gifted one. The show stems from Kauffman’s genuine curiosity about the paranormal, which increased after her parents died. J.D. Roth (Beauty and the Geek, The Biggest Loser) is also on board to exec produce. Production is scheduled to begin next week. (Hollywood Reporter)

Fox Searchlight developing holiday comedy for Hawn
Fox Searchlight has optioned Elisa Bell and Jeff Kline’s spec script The Rosenbergs Save Christmas as a potential starring vehicle for Goldie Hawn. The story is about an engaged couple from different religious backgrounds whose families clash at a Christmas gathering. (Variety)

‘Til Death scores again behind Idol
Fox’s comedy ‘Til Death scored series-high ratings for a third straight week on Tuesday in its new time slot, following American Idol. Death earned a 6.3 rating/16 share, and the top 18-49 score for any comedy this season. (Variety)

Stop the Yard director helming futuristic thriller
Columbia Pictures has tapped Stop the Yard director Sylvain White to helm the futuristic thriller Static, with Neal Moritz producing through his Original Film production company. The Brad Gann-written story is about the leader of Los Angeles’ toughest street gang battling rivals as he is transported to testify against corrupt members of the city’s police force. Guy Ritchie was previously attached to direct. (Hollywood Reporter)

Tudors premiere gets huge ratings for Showtime
Showtime’s The Tudors attracted 870,000 viewers with its Sunday premiere, more than three times the network’s 2006 primetime average and considerably higher than debuts of Dexter and Weeds. When the additional 404,000 viewers who tuned in for an 11 p.m. encore are added, Showtime said it was its best series debut night in three years, since the launch of Kirstie Alley’s Fat Actress. (Variety)

Paramount hires comic book author for video game adaptation
Paramount has hired comic book author Grant Morrison to write the movie adaptation of the Midway Games’ videogame Area 51. The game’s story is about a hazardous materials specialist investigating a viral outbreak that could be extra-terrestrial in nature. Morrison’s credits include DC Comics’ Justice League of America, Doom Patrol, and Animal Man. He’s also written for Marvel Comics’ New X-Men and Fantastic Four, and his revisionist Batman book, Arkham Asylum, has sold more than 500,000 copies worldwide. (Variety)

Shins, Wu Tang Clan join Bumbershoot lineup
The Shins, the Wu-Tang Clan, Panic! At The Disco, the reunited Crowded House, and Lupe Fiasco will lead the initial lineup for 2007’s Bumbershoot: Seattle’s Music & Arts Festival. Steve Earle, Devotchka, Devendra Banhart, Roky Erickson, Allison Moorer, Gogol Bordello, Kill Hannah, Norma Jean, Plain White T’s, the Gourds, Lyrics Born, the Holmes Brothers, and Magnolia Electric Company are also on the bill. The event will be held Sept. 1-3. Bumbershoot three-day passes can be ordered through the event's website for $75 through Aug. 17, and $95 after that. Single-day tickets are $30 and go on sale July 13. (Billboard)

Lou Dobbs heads to CBS’ Early Show
CNN anchor Lou Dobbs will appear Thursdays as a weekly contributor on CBS’ Early Show where he will comment on business and social topics discussed on his opinionated CNN program, Lou Dobbs Tonight. Dobbs will be free to express his opinions, but a CBS executive says show anchors will challenge him when appropriate. (Variety)

GSN doing fourth season of High Stakes Poker
Season 4 will tape in May at the South Point Hotel, Casino and Spa in Las Vegas for a fall premiere. High Stakes Poker is GSN’s top-rated program with men and adults 18-34. (Hollywood Reporter)

CBS doing second season of online soap reality show
CBS has greenlit a second season of InTurn, its unscripted Web series in which nine contestants compete for a 13-week role on the daytime drama As the World Turns. Slated for launch this summer, the series will again document participants undergoing screen tests, cold readings, and other acting challenges while residing under the same roof. A new episode will debut on twice a week for eight weeks. Actors from the soap serving as judges will vote off six of the contestants, and online viewers will determine the final winner. The first season landed winner Alex Charak a recurring role on ATWT. (Hollywood Reporter)

Ebert ready to get back to work after surgery
Roger Ebert says he plans to ”return to action” at his Overlooked Film Festival at the University of Illinois from April 25-29, following his surgery last June for salivary gland cancer. Ebert, 64, says he will watch from the audience at the festival, now in its ninth year. (Hollywood Reporter)


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