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the women of cult television

news archive

bennifer part deux

30 jun


• garner, affleck tie the knot

Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck's publicists have confirmed that the pair were married yesterday at a resort in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

Publicists Ken Sunshine and Nicole King also confirmed for the first time that Garner is pregnant, although this has pretty much been common knowledge for some time.

The marriage is the second for Garner, who was previously wed to her Felicity co-star Scott Foley, and the first for Affleck. He was famously engaged to Jennifer Lopez in 2003, but they called off the wedding in September of that year and broke up a few months later.

Affleck and Garner first met while filming Pearl Harbor, in which he starred as a pilot and she had a smaller part as a nurse. They co-starred in 2003's Daredevil, which was filmed while she was still married to Foley. In between her marriages, Garner dated her Alias co-star Michael Vartan.

In contrast to the exhaustingly demonstrative relationship Affleck had with Lopez, he and Garner have kept a fairly low profile. They went to a Boston Red Sox game last autumn but have otherwise rarely appeared together in public. back to the top

alyson hannigan on spoof duty

25 jun


• untitled romantic comedy spoof starts shooting

Alyson Hannigan is to star in an untitled spoof on romantic comedies.

The Regency Enterprises project is from writer/directors Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer, whose credits include Scary Movie and Spy Hard. Shooting starts this week.

Hannigan, best known for her roles as Willow on Buffy The Vampire Slayer and Michelle in the American Pie movies, plays the lead, while British newcomer Adam Campbell plays her romantic interest.

Eddie Griffin (Undercover Brother) is Hannigan's father, while Jennifer Coolidge and Fred Willard are Campbell's parents. Coolidge and Willard have appeared together in such movies as Best in Show and A Mighty Wind, and with Hannigan in American Wedding. back to the top

pitt's "other woman" wants jolie romance

24 jun


• "the first thing i would do is call my husband and break up with him "

This week's award for most obvious publicity attempt goes to actress April Florio. Still, it give me an excuse to run the picture on the right, so it's not all bad.

Apparently caught up in a Brad Pitt cheating scandal in 2004 she is now hoping for a lesbian tryst with Pitt's reported new girlfriend, Angelina Jolie.

Florio says she would leave her husband if Jolie expressed an interest in her.

She says, "I think any girl would want to be with her. Plus, it's funny that we've both in the same scandal together.

"If Angelina was interested in me, the first thing I would do is call my husband and break up with him. She's so hot and she doesn't give a shit.

"She brings out the inner perv in all of us. No guys do it for me like she does."

In other Angelina news, the actress is reportedly getting a tattoo of a rabit on her butt as a surprise for alleged lover Brad Pitt.

A source said: "She wants a rabbit for her right butt cheek."

Last year, Angelina, who has a number of tattoos already, got a tiger etching onto her lower back to celebrate becoming a Cambodian citizen.

The Tomb Raider star revisted Thai tattooist Sompong Kanphai after she became convinced a tattoo of an ancient Cambodian script he had designed filled her life with good fortune. back to the top

mcgowan smitten with button

22 jun


• "it's fair to say they fancy the pants off each other"

According to the News of the World, Charmed's Rose McGowan is enjoying a whirlwind romance with Formula One racing star Jensen Button.

The actress met Button in Monaco in May, just weeks after her split from journalist Dave Zinczenko.

The pair immediately started dating, even spending a romantic three nights in the glitzy Columbus Hotel, owned by Button's fellow F1 driver David Coulthard, within hours of meeting.

A friend of Button says, "Jenson and Rose were chatting for a bit before the race and got on really well.

"They arranged to meet up afterwards and went for dinner and a few drinks.

"It's fair to say they fancy the pants off each other." back to the top

emilie in the hills

21 jun


• "roswell" babe heads remake cast

The lovely Emilie de Ravin - best known as Tess on Roswell and Claire on Lost is to lead the cast of Fox Searchlight's The Hills Have Eyes.

The original 1977 film was written and directed by Wes Craven, and tells of a suburban family stalked by a group of psychotic people who live in the desert. Director Alexandre Aja has written the remake's screenplay.

Kathleen Quinlan, Aaron Stanford, Ted Levin and Vinessa Shaw will also star in the film.

There's no news yet on whether Emilie will be using her native Australian accent or playing an American once again. back to the top

gellar heads to wonderland

21 jun • variety


• "buffy" star to play computer game heroine

Sarah Michelle Gellar is to star in Alice, Universal's twisted take on the Lewis Carroll classic.

In Erich and Jon Hoeber's adaptation, the title character (Gellar) returns to a dark and dangerous Wonderland after the murder of her family and the destruction of the family home. It's in Wonderland that Alice must confront her fears before she can return to a normal life.

A film version of the game, created by American McGee, has been in the works since 2001, when Wes Craven announced his plans to bring it to the screen. "Everything that we can take from the game, we will steal, and then we'll bring even more to it. I'm sure this will be a big CGI picture, and we'll try to duplicate as much of the sort of wonder part of the Wonderland as we can," Craven said at the time.

Eliza Dushku, Heather Donahue and Natalie Portman have previously been rumoured for the part.

In 2002 , it was announced that Milla Jovovich was in talks to play Alice. Jovovich said at the time, "I'm actually meeting with Wes Craven's people to talk about what they want to do because they have the rights to Alice." back to the top

holly marie combs on blowing stuff up...

17 jun • tv guide


• "you never know when it's gonna get too violent"

The task of bewitching TV viewers isn't always easy for the sexy sorceresses of Charmed. Take one scene in the seventh season finale, when Holly Marie Combs, Rose McGowan and Alyssa Milano visited a vampiress' bat cave and zapped the hell out of her flock of flying critters. Those biting bats, of course, were courtesy of computerised special effects added in after the scene was shot.

"When we're all swatting at imaginary bats, it looks silly," Combs tells, grinning. "There's no way to look cool doing that. It takes getting used to. You have to use your imagination and be very humble, because you are gonna look like an idiot, and you just have to accept the fact that, unfortunately, the more ridiculous you look, the more convincing it is on the screen."

It is fortunate that the show's trio of TV witches get to spend at least one more year feeling silly at work, since Charmed has been renewed for an eighth season. "The [WB] network owes it to us to let us wrap the series properly," Combs says. "I don't feel like the story has ended yet. There's so much we haven't done!"

Of course, Combs and Co. will never be done receiving fan attention - both the good and bad kinds - long after the series wraps its run.

"Many a person on the street [has asked] me if I can really freeze things or blow them up," Combs chuckles. "I'm like, 'No, no, let's not go there. Let's separate [television from] reality.' It's a kooky show, so there are some kooky folk who like it."

"It's sad, though, because some children are afraid of me, which is not good," she sighs. "I've turned into so many evil things on the show that they're not sure what to make of me. There are some parents who let their little, little kids watch the show, which I don't condone. Because you never know when it's gonna get too violent, gory or bloody. You never know with us!" back to the top

hard times of the first sexy "dr who" girl

16 jun • daily mirror, 15 jun


• " i am a happy hermit but billie needs to be careful"

When Anneke Wills first saw Billie Piper in Doctor Who, it was like seeing her younger self through a time warp.

And when she heard that the young actress planned to quit her role as Rose halfway through the next series of the BBC1 show, her own past came tumbling into the present.

It is nearly four decades since Anneke herself closed the TARDIS door for the last time and, afraid of being typecast, ended her career as the Time Lord's assistant.

But what happened to her afterwards was more remarkable than any of her on-screen adventures as William Hartnell's and then Patrick Troughton's pretty blonde sidekick.

Today, aged 64 and still beguilingly attractive, Anneke lives like a hermit on the edge of Dartmoor. She survives on a meagre pension in a tiny rented cottage.

In the garden she has hacked out of the undergrowth she has set up a bath tub fed by a hose from the kitchen. On summer evenings she lies soaking, looking at the fabulous view and contemplating her incredible life.

If young Billie could hear her tell her story, she might think carefully about the path she chooses when she hangs up her own TARDIS key.

"I would say to Billie: 'Life is never as straightforward as you think it's going ot be'," says Anneke.

When she landed the part of Polly in the early 60s [sic] she was, like Billie today, absolutely right for her era.

"I was the first sexy assistant," she says, smiling at the memory. "I was a classic dolly bird with eyelashes longer than my skirts."

The daughter of an aristocratic artist who walked out when she was three leaving a ten shilling note on her pillow, she was raised by her Dutch mother, a beautiful former model.

At RADA she became friends with future stars Tom Courtenay and Sarah Miles - and established a reputation as a wildchild. By her own admission, she was thrown out of the prestigious drama school for "behaving badly with Edward Fox."

"I completely loved him, but he married someone else," she says. She lived with musical star Anthony Newley before falling for distinguished actor Michael Gough on a film set when she was 21.

Gough - later to play Batman's butler Albert [sic] - was twice her age and had been married twice before.

"He got off a train at Euston station, went down on his knees and proposed," she recalls. "He was gorgeous and brilliant and I was bowled over."

By the time she landed her £60-a-week Doctor Who role, life seemed perfect. The couple had two children, Polly in 1963 and Jasper in 1965. Their friends included comedian Peter Cook, film giant Kenneth More and fashion gurus Mary Quant and Ossie Clark.

"It was really nerve-wracking at first," she says. "My first Doctor Who was William Hartnell who was fussy and bad-tempered, ready to blow at any moment.

"Then Patrick Troughton took over. He was heavenly and it became great fun. We used to laugh so much.

"Of course, there was also an awful lot of running around and screamin. I took lessons in screaming so as not to damage my throat."

She turned down a second series for fear of being typecast and went on to play the assistant to Anthony Quayle's criminologist in the hit series, Strange Report.

But when she was asked to go to Hollywood to film another series, she was afraid it would destroy her marriage. Instead she gave up acting altogether.

"Mick (Gough) was incredibly jealous and possessive," she says. "I'd also done the whole drugs and rock-and-roll scene. So I thought I'd go to the countryside, grow the children, plant peas - and save my marriage."

While Gough was filming The Go-Between with Julie Christie, and Alan Bates in Norfolk, the couple found a sprawling 300-year-old Georgian farmhouse.

Their first years were idyllic. Anneke plunged herself into the hippie lifestyle, worked hard in her garden and raised her children. But when Gough began working at the National Theatre in London, the conflict between their two lifestyles began to show.

"He came home at weekends hopelessly theatrical, trilling 'Oh, daahling', while I was into meditation. Plus I couldn't satand his possessiveness while he seemed to have an eye for every young actress around.

"He came hope less and less and when he did we had terrible rows. I knew something had to happen."

Having met a devotee of The Beatles' guru, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, she fled to India, donned the orange robes worn by his follows and joined his ashram.

She left behind 14-year-old Polly but took 12-year-old Jasper, who is now a photographer for Sotheby's.

"The future was very lonely and frightening," she says. "I had to swap my lovely home for a mattress in a communal room. I hugged a pillow for three days solidly and sobbed but I had to let go. And I was with wonderful people like Terence Stamp."

As the 80s dawned the Orange People moved to the US where Anneke scraped a living cleaning houses in California. Then, just before Christmas 1982, came the devastating news that Polly had died in a car crash.

"She was about to get married to a lovely boy," says Anneke. "She was driving home from a pub with a friend when she hit ice, the car tipped into a ditch and they both drowned. It felt like my guts had been ripped out and hung up to dry."

At the graveside, her ex-husband Gough, who had by then remarried, would not meet Anneke's eye or touch her, an act of coldness it took her decades to forgive.

"She was our child," she says. "I was the mother standing alone and wretched and unhugged. It was inhuman. But I've come to understand it would have hurt him too much to look at me and I have let it go."

In her grief, Anneke fled back to America. She paid a man $1,000 to marry her so she could get a Green Card and threw herself into a new career as an interior designer.

She moved into a community of artists on Hornby Island, off Vancouver in Canada where she directed plays and fell in love with a marine biologist 15 years her junior.

They married in 1993 and, when he said he wanted to train as an actor, she sold her house to pay for his drama school fees. But while there, he fell for a fellow student.

"She was 23 and gorgeous. I was 54 and menopausal and had invested everything in him. It completely broke my heart," she says.

"I now understand that the men I've loved were all like my father - utterly beautiful, total geniuses ... and complete bastards." Around that time she accepted her first invitation to appear at a Doctor Who convention - and rediscovered the beauty of the English countryside. She moved to Devon three years ago.

With Jasper in London, no grandchildren, no friends nearby and little cash it was a bleak existence at first. Even now she sometimes goes two weeks without seeing a soul.

"I've been through tough times but the loneliness of that first winter was really tough. But I've come out the other side and I've never been happier. I've become a philosophical hermit, growing old and invisible - and loving it."

Nowadays, Anneke only steps into the spotlight for the wildly popular Doctor Who conventions.

"At the 30th anniversary, I walked down the aisle between 500 fans and everyone was cheering, sending my their love. It was incredible.

"I had no idea when I played Polly that it would go on like this and become so much part of my life. But I am still getting wonderful fan letters after 40 years and I'm sure it will be the same for Billie Piper.

"That's the magic of Doctor Who." back to the top

"alias" may be delayed over garner pregnancy

15 jun


• late start likely for season 5

According to E! Online's Watch With Kristin column, ABC executives didn't know of Jennifer Garner's pregnancy when they decided to renew Alias (although, to be fair to Garner, it's likely that she probably didn't even know herself). Consequently, it's becoming unlikely that the series will return in the autumn as planned, instead coming back at a later date. back to the top

jessica alba reveals (almost) all

13 jun


• "the paparazzi were going crazy"

Jessica Alba might have refused to go topless in Sin City, but the dress she wore to the MTV Movie Awards (right - click for a larger version) certainly left little to the imagination.

Although her dress had a ruffle, which, when placed just so, covered up her breasts, tragically it was askew much of the time. "It was pretty see-through," says a source. "The paparazzi were going crazy."

When promoting Sin City, Alba said that preparing for her role was an ordeal - particularly when she spent the day before shooting her first scenes at a strip club in Austin, Texas.

"The film is so much more glamorous than real life," she says. "Those girls will do anything to get tips. It's all about simulating masturbation and sex acts.

"The thought of it was terrifying. I asked them how they got over their stage fright and they said, 'Oh, it takes about three weeks.' And I was like, 'But I only have one day.'"

Alba went back to her hotel room, took most of her clothes off and started gyrating with a lasso.

"And then I saw Beyonce's Baby Boy video on MTV, and she was wearing this tiny negligee and high heels and looked amazing. So I was like, 'Wow, if she can do it in high heels, I can do it in cowboy boots.'"

Although two of the female cast - Jaime King and Carla Gugino - went topless in the film, Jessica refused to bare all: "I'm just not a push-up bras and miniskirts kind of girl," she insists. "I just play her in the movies. When I'm not working I won't even wear a skirt that's above my knee." back to the top

kristen bell talks "pulse" remake

2 jun


• "i never really played a punky person before "

Kristen Bell, star of UPN's great Veronica Mars, recently spoke with Now Playing about her role in the soon-to-start-shooting Pulse, a remake of the Japanese horror film Kairo.

"You don't always know, reading a script, how the director is going to interpret your character, and what I really liked about Pulse after meeting with the director [Jim Sonzero] was his attitude about the project," Bell says. "He wanted to go really punk. The whole project, unto itself, is about this lonely quality that people have and it's sort of the horror based about that. It's a very difficult project to describe. It's based a lot on loneliness. I was really taken by it when I had lunch with [him] and he really explained to me the loneliness of this character. She's just very stoic and frightened at the same time. I really loved the idea. I never really played a punky person before."

Bell has seen the original film, Kairo, an Internet-as-ghost-world allegory, and she says, "It's very, very scary. I tend to like horror movies that have much more of an unknown feeling, because I think that's the scariest thing possible. [It's] the old thing Alfred Hitchcock used to say, 'Show them less, and they'll be more frightened.' What you don't show is the scariest thing and I think that goes for ideas as well. That's what I liked about Pulse. The evil in Pulse is an unknown." back to the top

angelina jolie round-up

2 jun


• "we didn't become a team"

Angelina Jolie is convinced that her mother's decision to allow her to live with her first boyfriend when she was just 14 helped cement their close bond.

The 29-year-old says she never kept secrets from her mother Marcheline Betrand, because she proved she trusted the Tomb Raider star by letting her share their family home with her childhood sweetheart for two years.

Jolie says, "Are you ever emotionally developed enough to be involved in that kind of relationship?

"He lived in our house with my mom and brother [James Haven], so it wasn't like we were on our own, and I could always talk to my mom if there were any problems.

"She was more connected and aware of what was going on than most mothers."

Angelina says that she blames herself for her failed marriages to actors Johnny Lee Miller and Billy Bob Thornton - because she was too independent to be a succesful wife.

The actress divorced Miller and Thornton in 1999 and 2003 respectively, and she fears she would still be married if she allowed herself to form a team with her husbands and accepted their help.

She says, "I think I was a good wife to the men I married, and I'm capable of being a very nurturing person, but I also know that I never asked for any help.

"Even with something like buying a home together, I would say, 'I'll take care of my own stuff so that if this breaks apart tomorrow, I know where everything is.' We didn't become a team." back to the top


1 jun


• "she likes to be shocking sexually "

Angelina Jolie dumbfounded Mr and Mrs Smith director Doug Liman with her eagerness to make sex scenes in the movie as eye-watering as possible.

Liman instructed the sexy 29-year-old to perform the kinkiest sex acts he could think of, just to shock her - but none of his suggestions were new to the saucy star.

He says, "I suggested she should perform the most graphic, crazy sex act I could imagine for the love scene just to try to shock her. Like 10 steps beyond anything I'd consider doing in my own life.

"She starts furrowing her brows. I'm like, 'Oh, never heard of that one?' She's like, 'No, actually I'm just trying to figure out whether I've done that one.'"

Angelina's antics left even co-star Brad Pitt open-mouthed. Liman said: "Occasionally she would make a comment and both of us would be like, 'Whoa!'

"She likes to be shocking sexually. She likes to be that person in the room who's least embarrassed and willing to put it out there."

Liman also says that producer Dave Matalon warned him: "I don't want to lose that audience of people who are huge Jennifer Aniston fans, who are going to hate Angelina Jolie if the sex scene's too sexy.

"People will see the sex scene and say, 'Oh, that's how Angie did it.' It'll be like, 'She used her wiles to seduce him.'"

Meanwhile, Angelina frightened the film's cast and crew with her extensive knowledge of knives and guns.

Liman says, "Any time my prop guy did show-and-tells of knives and guns she would be very knowledgeable.

"I'm looking at them wondering if they look cool. She's asking, 'Does this also come with a serrated blade? And which particular hook, once you stick it into somebody, is good for ripping their flesh on the way out.'" back to the top