by Patricia Grandjean
Dec 13, 2010
03:57 PM
Box Office

Keeping Up with the Famed 50


Just this month, Connecticut Magazine published its survey of the Top 50 celebrities in Connecticut for 2010, but what most readers probably don't realize is that most of that article was written in October. Of course, anyone's life can change in a heartbeat—but seemingly even more so those lives that are open to public consumption. So we thought it behooved us to do a little more end-of-year updating. This is not, by any means, a survey of the entire group, but it covers the people who are most on our minds right now.

► Our No. 1 seed, Johnny Depp, is looking distinctly un-topdoglike with this past weekend's release of The Tourist—co-starring Angelina Jolie—which garnered a relatively anemic $17 million at the box office and plenty of mixed-to-bad reviews (David Schuster of sums it up handily: "The highly anticipated but dead almost on arrival The Tourist has to be one of the biggest disappointments of the year"). Oh, well, there's always next spring and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. And it looks like Dark Shadows is a go for 2012, with Depp as Barnabas Collins and Tim "Let's-hope-he's-shaken-Alice-in-Wonderland-off-his-shoes" Burton directing.

 ► Thanks in part to his "Restoring Honor" rally in Washington this year, Glenn Beck (No. 5) is on the not-so-short list to become TIME magazine's "Person of the Year" for 2010—but it might not be wise to hold our breaths. On the reader's poll, he trails Wikileaks' Julian Assange, Lady Gaga, Jon Stewart & Stephen Colbert and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The big choice will be announced this Weds., Dec. 15.

► Looks like producer Scott Rudin—No. 6—might want to dust off some shelf space for new statuettes: Both True Grit (with 11 nominations) and The Social Network (with 9) are big contenders for 2011's Critics' Choice Movie Awards, to be awarded by the Broadcast Film Critics Association [BFCA] Jan. 14 (and aired on VH-1). The nominees include Jeff Bridges, Hailee Steinfeld and directors Joel and Ethan Coen (for Grit); and Jesse Eisenberg and director David Fincher (for Network). Fellow producer Harvey Weinstein (No. 17) didn't do badly himself, with 11 nominations for The King's Speech and Best Acting nods for Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams of the Weinstein Co.'s Blue Valentine. Given that the Critics' Choice Awards are considered a solid indicator of who will win the Oscars, looks like THAT contest will be a Grit/Speech/Network threeway.

[UPDATE: As of 12/14, the Golden Globe nominations have also been announced, giving seven nods to The King's Speech, six to The Social Network and two to Blue Valentine. True Grit, it appears, has been completely shut out.]

Next from Weinstein, look for My Week with Marilyn, a dishy showbiz memoir starring Williams (as Marilyn Monroe), Kenneth Branagh (as Laurence Olivier), Dougray Scott (as Arthur Miller) and Emma Watson (late of the "Harry Potter" flicks). Rudin will co-produce the Christmas 2011 release The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Based on the novel by Stieg Larsson, it'll be directed by Fincher and feature Robin Wright, Christopher Plummer (No. 42) and Daniel Craig, who beat out George Clooney, Johnny Depp, Viggo Mortensen and Brad Pitt for the lead.

► Just so happens that No. 11, Keith Richards, celebrates a birthday Dec. 18. The folks at Bridgeport radio station WPKN-FM are planning a pull-out-all-the-stops celebration, featuring two afternoons of music (Dec. 16 & 17) both by the Rolling Stones and the Stones' blues influences, as well as giveaways (including the vinyl re-release of Exile on Main Street and the audiobook of Richards' acclaimed memoir Life, read by—who else?—Johnny Depp). The big question: Will "Keef" himself show up? There will be a birthday cake on hand, just in case.

► Here's some bad news for fans of TNT's "The Closer": It's just been reported today (Dec. 13) that the LAPD's Deputy Police Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson (Kyra Sedgwick, No. 13) will be hanging up her badge after the 15-episode 2011 season. Rumor has it that Sedgwick has had enough of commuting to L.A. from New York/Connecticut after seven Golden Globe- and Emmy-winning years; she recently told the ladies of "The View" that she's struggling mightily with "empty-nest syndrome" now that her daughter Sosie is off at college. Meanwhile, husband Kevin Bacon (No. 35) has been cutting an endearing figure as Ivan, the world's biggest Bacon fan, in ads for the Logitech Revue with Google TV—even with thinning hair, a paunch, and a scary motherlode of Bacon-phrenalia (don't worry, none of it's his).

► Our No. 15, Patti LuPone, has two big events planned for February. On Feb. 6, she'll be the guest at Jordan Roth's "Broadway Talks" series, held at the 92nd Street Y in New York City. The next evening, she'll be honored at a black-tie gala hosted by the Drama League and held in the Grand Ballroom of Manhattan's Pierre Hotel. Performers in this "Musical Celebration of Broadway" will include Donna Murphy, Liz Callaway and Connecticut native Anika Noni Rose. Sadly, the fate of her current big Broadway show, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, looks grim, though no closing date is in sight yet: Every outlet from The New York Times to USA Today has dissed it, the Wall Street Journal damning it as "the kind of been-there-seen-that musical that has been blighting Broadway for the past decade and more."

Keeping Up with the Famed 50

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Box Office is your guide to entertainment across Connecticut, courtesy of senior editor Pat Grandjean. If it's a chat with an actor or actress, previewing a new play at a regional theater, the latest on a state celebrity's new movie, or recommendations for seeing and doing, let Box Office be one of your hubs.

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