Ovitz then claims that his real reason for lying was that he wanted to keep his identity from Pellicano's assistant. As the tape rolled. Oh, the irony.
When Pellicano mentions that one of his children has a "problem," Ovitz swings into a trademark move: "You can always call me if you need medical help." That's a classic Hollywood favor that big donors to hospitals can confer, and it can certainly create lasting gratitude. "Do you need any help at UCLA?" Ovitz continues. The previous year, Ovitz had pledged $25 million to UCLA's medical school. That offer was to be eclipsed a mere month after this conversation with Pellicano by a $200 million gift from Ovitz foe David Geffen. The announcement came just as Ovitz's management company, AMG, went kaput. When it comes to vengeance, Geffen is truly an artist.
Having called Pellicano, Ovitz—ever the agent—tries to make it sound like he's doing Pellicano a favor. He wants to meet, he says, because "I think it would be beneficial to you and probably beneficial to me." Of course, Pellicano is only too happy to help. And not that Ovitz is self-dramatizing. He simply needs to see Pellicano about "the single most complex situation imaginable."
Apparently, that is having a couple of journalists writing negative stories about his troubled business. Thank God that doesn't happen to people every day.
As for the Ovitz testimony today, he expressed gratitude to Pellicano for getting him good information. How that information benefited him, however, remains unclear. (link)
April 8, 2008
Nein: So, the release of Valkyrie, the Tom Cruise film about the failed attempt to assassinate Hitler, has been pushed back—again—from October to February 2009. The studio says that the Presidents' Day weekend represented an opportunity to cash in. But many see the move as a very bad sign, and, indeed, the buzz on the film is not good.
What's not in dispute is that filming remains unfinished, which is remarkable for a movie that started shooting in September 2007. One piece not yet shot is a battle sequence that begins the movie. An insider says director Bryan Singer will film a scaled-back version of what was originally conceived as a Saving Private Ryan-type opening. According to this source, the sequence was abandoned at one time as a cost-saving measure—and this movie is racking up the bucks—but when it became clear that the film was too talky, the battle was reinstated. The sequence explains why hero Claus von Stauffenberg wears that eye patch.
A studio source contends that the battle scene was always in. Apparently, it was going to be filmed in Dubai, which tried to lure the production with hopes of a publicity windfall derived from the presence of Tom, Katie, and Suri. Film your nextmovie in Dubai! That deal fell apart, and no location has been selected.
But our insider doubts that the addition of the action sequence will help. He says the problem is a script that read well on the page but played too melodramatically on the set. The studio insider responds that the script got some routine fine-tuning as it was shot but wasn't a major problem. (The production toyed early with having the actors do accents, but everyone agreed: It wouldn't do to sound like Harrison Ford in K-19: The Widowmaker. Nonetheless, some actors apparently found it hard not to slip into an accent, anyway. Something about that Nazi uniform.)