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These Days, Even ScarJo Gets the Financial Blues [Morning Links]

a reason to be really happy this morning: If you’re Neil LaBute, it’s because the New York Times really, really likes your new play. “Yet reasons to be pretty, which opened Thursday night at the Lyceum Theater in a wonderfully acted production directed by Terry Kinney, may turn out to be the sentimental sleeper of a season that includes star-powered, would-be tear-jerkers like 33 Variations and the unfortunate Impressionism. Making his Broadway debut with a revised (and much improved) version of a play seen off Broadway last year, Mr. LaBute has exchanged misanthropy for empathy, reaping unexpected dividends.” Congrats Neil! [NYT]

Can you imagine Bush and Putin duking it out like this?: “The President made a beeline for Miss Rowling, at the end of the Downing Street G20 dinner, and told her that he had read all her books himself and to his children Sasha and Malia. Miss Rowling then received a second presidential seal of approval for the boy wizard from Russia’s President Medvedev and his wife Svetlana, who not only admitted to having read the Harry Potter books but also asked for her autograph.” [Telegraph]

The recession hits Hollywood paychecks: “You’re Scarlett Johansson. You’re pretty and you’re pretty famous, too. And you’ve just been offered the part of the Black Widow in Iron Man 2! That’s got to be some payday, right? How about $250,000, which is what Marvel Studios offered Johansson and Mickey Rourke to be in the film?” [The Daily Beast]

This could get awkward, fast: “Though they no longer perform together and are rarely seen in the same room, founding Run-DMC members Joseph ‘Rev Run’ Simmons and Darryl ‘DMC’ McDaniels will take the stage Saturday night after being inducted [into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame] by none other than Eminem in one of his first major public appearances in several years.” Metallica and Jeff Beck are also being inducted. [MTV News]

Why Franky Gehry should really like Ike: “After a rough couple of weeks with leaky buildings, loose tongues, and buildings chopped in half, starchitect Frank Gehry finally had something go right for him this week with the announcement that he’d been selected for the commission to build the national memorial to Dwight Eisenhower in Washington DC, his first project there.”He’ll have a budget of somewhere between $90 and $120m. Yep. That’s exactly the face we made. [Unbeige]