● Simon Monjack was found dead in his Los Angeles home just months after his wife, the actress Brittany Murphy, died after going into cardiac arrest. His cause of death is as of yet unknown. [LAT] ● Saturday Night Live skit-turned-unnecessary feature film, MacGruber, bombed hard at the box office, pulling in only $4.1 million, or way less than A Night at the Roxbury. [HR] ● Mark Twain’s autobiography, which he demanded be kept sealed for 100 years after his death, is scheduled for release this year. [DM]
● So, about that Lost thing… Reactions abound. [The Entire Internet] ● A thirteen-year-old boy climbed Mount Everest this weekend, while all other thirteen-year-olds died in video games. [Reuters] ● Sarah Ferguson, better known as Fergie, Duchess of York, was caught on camera selling access to her royal ex-husband. Brits have all the secret camera tabloid fun. [MSNBC]
Everyone knows that Will Forte’s popular SNL sketch, MacGruber, is a spoof on ABC’s 1980s hit MacGyver. The exploding title, the mullet, the ability to solve any problem with a few random objects—all are familiar trademarks of the Richard Dean Anderson series, and Forte uses them to great comic effect. No one in the MacGyver camp ever minded—it’s just a parody, after all—until it was announced that a film version of MacGruber was in the works. Now the show’s creator wants to sue. Why? Turns out he’s making his own film.
Series creator Lee David Zlotoff retained the movie rights to the original property and, according to the Hollywood Reporter, was developing the project at New Line as of last March. When he learned that Relativity Media was going forward with their MacGruber spoof, he immediately began sending cease-and-desist letters. “We feel they’re infringing our rights,” Zlotoff lawyer Paul Mayersohn told THR.
Nevertheless, the MacGruber film is still moving forward (trailers are up, it’s set premiere at SXSW) and Mayerson and Zlotoff are considering a copyright lawsuit and attempting to get an injunction against the film’s release. Of course, the reality here is that Zlotoff isn’t worried about his rights per se, but rather fears that the spoof will sour audiences for the real thing—if and when it gets off the ground. He may be right, but the smart money says there’s probably not much he can do about it.
● Tiger Woods‘ story almost gets more sordid: Rachel Uchitel’s got mob ties, but way back in her family tree. [Daily Beast] ● Jennifer Lopez continues to impersonate a far less famous person, may guest star on Glee. [Perez] ● U4EA, Moloko Plus and other memorable fictitious drugs. Plus, the ten weirdest places drugs have been found, including inside a frozen shark. [Unreality; Complex]
● Almost a 30 Rock episode: Old man tries to commit suicide, but his blow-up doll girlfriend cushions the blow, saves his life instead. [China Smack] ● The MacGruber trailer is here, and it doesn’t look half bad, except for Val Kilmer, who looks like he’s been taking fashion tips from Men Who Look Like Old Lesbians. [Coming Soon] ● Someone got served a frozen McDonald’s burger. Almost makes you wish for a cooked rat tail. [Consumerist]