Thursday 18 June 1998
RETURN OF THE DOLLS: Brady Bunch director Betty Thomas looks intent on mining an entire career from a rich seam of 50s and 60s trash. Next up for Thomas is a re-make of Dr Dolittle with Eddy Murphy and this week comes news that she's on the verge of clinching a deal to helm another version of Jacqueline Susann's pulpy best-selling 1966 novel, Valley of the Dolls. Susann's vivid portrayal of the tribulations of three wannabe starlets battling to the top has sold over 19 million copies to date and underwent its first film adaptation a year after publication; an effort which Susann judged "a piece of shit". Susann got as good as she gave, however: Truman Capote once commented that she looked rather like "a truck driver in drag". Whether actress Bette Midler, who is due to star as the writer in a forthcoming biopic, will take Capote's bon mot as a cue for her characterisation remains for us all to see, however.
TEARS FOR PINOCCHIO: A tearful turn of events in Francis Ford Coppola's legal action against Warner Brothers provided a fascinating glimpse into the kind of schmaltz that attracts one of American cinema's greatest directors. Coppola is seeking over $23m in damages for what he believes is the studio's attempt to lay claim to a live-action, big screen adaptation of Pinocchio, which they had initially expressed interest in before backing off. Coppola told the court before breaking down: "I don't know why stories of kids are so moving to me. You need a concept that gives life to a [story], to give it a heart and soul, something unique." The director cried as he recounted his vision of the Pinocchio tale, which updates the story of the lying wooden puppet who dreams of becoming a real boy to Nazi-occupied France.
To mark Tolstoy's 186th birthdaybooks
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Amy Winehouse statue unveiled in Camden
- 2 Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
- 3 George Galloway on Scottish independence: The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
- 4 Headaches, fry ups, and hair of the dog - why do we get hangovers, and is there such thing as a 'cure'?
- 5 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
Fifty Shades of Grey movie: New picture of Anastasia Steele revealed
From Berenice Abbott to Nadav Kander, the Barbican's architecture photography exhibition is an alternative history of modern man
X Factor 2014 review: Paul Akister performance spurs Cheryl Cole and Mel B into bizarre Simon Cowell lap dance
Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
Tyler, The Creator says having the new U2 album automatically downloaded on his iPhone was 'like waking up with herpes'
George Galloway on Scottish independence: The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained in Los Angeles after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
Scottish independence: Britain faces 'constitutional crisis' at next election
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly