If you are visiting Los Angeles, be careful asking for directions to the Hollywood Sign. In this weekend's LA Times, Bob Pool examined the recent negativity from native Californians toward star-seeking tourists in search of a photo op.p>
While it seems only natural that one would stop at the iconic sign when traveling to LA, some who live in the area are tired of the "hordes of tourists" winding through the hills looking for the perfect place to take a picture. Some citizens have even taken it upon themselves to erect a "Warning - Tourist-Free Zone - All Tourists Leave the Area" sign to dissuade people from doing it (yea, right, we're sure that will stop them).
However, there's no need to fret -- there are those who live in the area who actually want the tourists to come. A project looking to improve the roadside and create an area for tourist-friendly Kodak moments is already underway by government officials and some homeowners associations. Of course, that could all be a coverup for Dr. Evil's Secret Lair, which was located behind the Hollywood Sign in 2002's 'Goldmember.'
In other news, the New York Times' Mark Harris spoke with Kirsten Dunst about her role in controversial director Lars von Trier's upcoming end-of-the-world flick, 'Melancholia.' Other than her thoughts on the whole Cannes debacle, where von Trier made some ill-informed comments about Nazis, ("I was so upset that he just kept going, trying to get to a place where there'd be a laugh ... I think at one point I did whisper to him, 'Lars, shut up, this is terrible' "), Dunst talks about what it's like to go from a big-budget superhero franchise to a film about disaster and depression. Not that she has anything against her 'Spider-Man' days. In fact, she expresses her interest in wanting to cameo in the reboot starring Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone: "I thought it would be really cool to have me and Tobey walking through the background of this new one as extras, just, like, eating lunch next to the new Spider-Man."
Moving over to the latest issue of Newsweek, writer Nick Summers interviews Oakland A's GM Billy Beane, who is portrayed by Brad Pitt in 'Moneyball,' opening this week. Brad has played a variety of oddball roles over the years -- so what Pitt character, besides himself, does Beane most identify with? "His character on 'Head of the Class,' I think that's where he first broke in. I think that's the one I identify with." That's an interesting choice, although, we should be thankful it wasn't 'Freddy's Nightmares.'
Rounding things out is a quote from Academy Award-nominated actress Glenn Close. She will be playing a woman posing as a man in the upcoming film 'Albert Nobbs,' which is already garnering Oscar buzz. However, this isn't her first crack at the character -- she played her/him in an off-Broadway production 15 years ago. So what roles did she look at for inspiration (besides her own, that is)? "I looked at Charlie Chaplin movies because I always felt like there was something about Albert that was kind of like the cosmic clown of a tragic comedy. So I did a lot of looking at Chaplin and how long his pants were and how big his shoes were. Because initially, of course, her clothes would have been too big."