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The 'Gypsy' film with Barbra Streisand might still be happening after all

Here she is, boys; here she is, world… here’s Barbra! Well, maybe.

After years in development, it looks like a new film adaptation of the musical Gypsy is back on track with Barbra Streisand potentially directing herself as Mama Rose. Universal has now reportedly hired Richard LaGravenese to write a new script for the musical by Jule Styne, Arthur Laurents, and Stephen Sondheim, a smart move for the studio. LaGravenese worked with Streisand before, on 1996′s The Mirror Has Two Faces, and wrote HBO’s splashy Liberace biopic Behind the Candelabra. He also recently finished directing his film adaptation of Jason Robert Brown’s musical The Last Five Years starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan. Actually, those two actors would be a great choice to play Louise and Tulsa respectively, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

Downton Abbey‘s Julian Fellowes had been hired by the studio back in 2012 to write a new script based on the true story of burlesque dancer Gypsy Rose Lee and her stage mother from hell, Rose Havoc. Ethel Merman originated the role of Rose on Broadway in 1959, and Rosalind Russell and Bette Midler have both starred in separate film versions. But after the death of director/book writer Laurents in 2011, Sondheim now has full and sole approval over the film’s director and the actors playing the three main roles of Rose, Louise, and Herbie. Of course, by the time the film gets made, it may end up being more like Grandma Rose; Merman was 51 when she originated the role, Streisand turned 72 in April.

Streisand hasn’t helmed a musical since Yentl, but something tells me she’s gonna see to it that her Rose is seen one day.

Barbra Streisand to perform at Oscars

Hello, gorgeous.

Though Barbra Streisand has won two Academy Awards, she’s only performed at the ceremony once — nearly four decades ago. But today, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed that Streisand will sing at this year’s Oscars telecast on Sunday, Feb. 24. “In an evening that celebrates the artistry of movies and music, how could the telecast be complete without Barbra Streisand?” producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron said in a statement. “We are honored that she has agreed to do a very special performance on this year’s Oscars, her first time singing on the show in 36 years.”


Q&A: 'The Guilt Trip' writer talks Babs, road trip with his mom -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

Dan Fogelman is a mama’s boy at heart.

The screenwriter’s own road trip five and a half years ago with his mother Joyce, winding from her condo in New Jersey to Las Vegas, inspired his script for The Guilt Trip, out in theaters today, starring Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand.

In the movie, Streisand’s Joyce Brewster lovingly nags Rogen, playing son Andrew, as they embark on various quirky road adventures, including her feasting on an enormous steak. Check out this exclusive featurette, below, with clips from the film and Fogelman narrating video of the road trip he took with his mom, who did in fact attempt to chomp down on a huge steak in Texas herself.


Barbra Streisand on 'Gypsy': What's age gotta do with it?

Barbra Streisand’s got one thing to say to anyone who thinks she might be too old to play Mamma Rose in the anticipated film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim and Arthur Laurents’ legendary musical Gypsy: “What’s [age] got to do with anything?”

Ever since Universal announced plans last March for a Gypsy update — written by Downton Abbey’s Julian Fellowes and co-produced and starring Streisand — some critics have drawn attention to the difference between Streisand’s age, 70, and that of the real-life woman portrayed in the musical. The Academy Award-winning actress would not only have to depict a woman who, in parts of the production, is between 30 and 40 years younger than she is, she’d have to play the mother of children who are as many as 60 years younger than she is.

Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand are mother/son duo in 'The Guilt Trip' -- VIDEO

Eurotrip this is not.

In an early lead for the most random on-screen pairing of the year (that we think is totally going to work), look no further than the trailer for The Guilt Trip, which stars Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand — headlining her first movie since 1996’s The Mirror Has Two Faces — as a mother/son duo who take an awkward road trip together.

Directed by Anne Fletcher (The Proposal), Guilt Trip has Rogen’s character becoming concerned that his mom may be stuck in a rut, so he invites her to join him on a cross-country journey for his job. “8 Days. 3000 Miles” the trailer declares.  What could possibly go wrong? Everything, as you might expect.

Check out the trailer below to find out why you should never pick up hitchhikers, why tapas and topless are not the same thing, and a couple NSFW comments we definitely can’t print here:

Casting Net: Colin Firth, Cate Blanchett attached to Barbra Streisand-directed drama. Plus: Charlie Sheen, Reese Witherspoon, Maya Rudolph

• Type casting alert. Charlie Sheen will play the President of the United States in director Robert Rodriguez‘s exploitation thriller sequel, Machete Kills, Rodriguez announced Thursday on Twitter. The film will follow ex-Mexican Federale Machete (Danny Trejo) as he takes on a drug cartel for the U.S. government. Mel Gibson, Jessica Alba, Amber Heard, Sofia Vergara, and Zoe Saldana costar. [@Rodriguez]

• Reese Witherspoon is an alien! Specifically, a Venusian. The actress is attached to a feature adaptation of Dr. John Gray’s mega-bestseller Men Are From MarsWomen Are From Venus. Commercial director Bryan Buckley will make his feature directing debut with the film, which was adapted by Deborah Kaplan and Harry Elfont (Leap Year, Made of Honor). [Deadline]

• Maya RudolphRob Corddry, and Amanda Peet have joined The Way, Way Back, the coming-of-age dramedy penned by recent Oscar winners Jim Rash and Nat Faxon (The Descendants). The pair will also make their directorial debut with the project, as well as star in two small supporting roles. The cast also includes Sam RockwellToni ColletteSteve Carell, and Liam James (AMC’s The Killing), in the lead role of a teenager who spends a summer at a local water park. [Deadline]

• Max Minghella (The Social Network) is in preliminary talks to star opposite Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson in director Shawn Levy‘s comedy The Internship. Minghella would play an ambitious intern who squares off against Vaughn and Wilson, playing has-been salesmen who try to reboot their careers by taking internships at a technology company. [Variety]

• Bruce Greenwood (Star Trek), Michael Gladis (AMC’s Mad Men) and Matt Letscher (ABC’s Scandal) have all signed onto the West Memphis Three film Devil’s Knot. Greenwood will play the presiding judge in the case that controversially sent three Arkansas teenagers to jail for the murder of three young boys; Gladis and Letscher would play defense attorneys in the case. Atom Egoyan (The Sweet Hereafter) is directing. [THR, Deadline]

Read more:
Casting Net: Jim Parsons, Rihanna to give voice to ‘Happy Smekday!’ Plus: Jason Schwartzman, Rob Reiner, Edgar Ramirez
Casting Net: Jon Hamm may face off against Larry David. Plus: Jon Bernthal, Amber Heard
Casting Net: Tony winner James Corden to play Paul Potts. Plus: Alex Pettyfer, Cam Gigandet, Ed Helms

Barbra Streisand and Larry Kramer trade blame for failed 'Normal Heart' film -- EXCLUSIVE

Film legend Barbra Streisand and gay activist Larry Kramer would both like to set the record straight about their failed attempt to bring The Normal Heart — Kramer’s 1985 play about the dawn of the AIDS epidemic — to the big screen. The problem is, each of them says it’s the other’s fault. In an exclusive interview with EW, Streisand calls Kramer “brilliant, courageous, stubborn, and self-destructive.” The writer’s response? “She never put her money where her mouth is.”


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