Many people remember 2006 Oscar-winner Crash as a painfully obvious polemic on race relations in the US — the filmic equivalent of getting bludgeoned by a politically correct sledgehammer. Annie Proulx remembers it as a bane on her gay cowboy baby. In a bid to capture major cable mojo (like AMC, Showtime, and FX, for example), Starz has spun off the flick to create an original series for its Friday night line-up. Sure, such a plum time slot positions the show for imminent (if expensive) failure, as do unfavorable reviews like this and this. But unless he’s counterbalanced by the roguish charm of Kiefer Sutherland, Dennis Hopper — the show’s biggest star — may be better off shepherding the barely-there pastures of the alleged Friday night audience. Witness his gratuitous monologues and the rest of the first two episodes here.
Unfortunately, it’s not the one with the Cronenbergian car sex. Word came today that easy rider Dennis Hopper has signed on to star in Starz’s new series based on the Paul Haggis vehicle (!) and recent Oscar behemoth. Featuring altogether new characters—with altogether new perfectly-honed prejudice!—the 13-episode adaptation also stars people we’ve never heard of and someone from “Jericho.” Hopper plays Ben, a music producer looking for his big career crescendo. Now we’re worried. Anyone remember Cedric the Entertainer in Be Cool? Precisely.