Gandolfini joins Washington in ‘Pelham’

From mobster to mayor of New York. According to TV Guide, James Gandolfini is joining the cast of the remake of the action classic “The Taking of Pelham 123.”

In case you never saw the original, it’s about a thug (to be played by John Travolta in the update) who takes a subway car hostage and holds it for ransom. Gandolfini will play the role of NYC mayor facing the crisis.

gandolfini.jpgAnd while all of this (including the intentionally misleading title of this post) has nothing to do with the Westchester village of Pelham, we still have more than a few reasons to mention it on this here suburban celebrity blog. Among them: Mount Vernon native Denzel Washington will be taking on the role of subway security chief Zachary “Z” Garber, played by Walter Matthau in the original. And that’s not all! Former Scarsdale resident (and current NY Giants owner) Steve Tisch is also reportedly producing the flick. See, local connections galore.

Thanks to F.O.S. Amy Vernon for the tip.

“James Gandolfini to star in The Taking of Pelham 123” [TVGuide]

(AP Photo/Evan Agostini)

Denzel set to “Take” Pelham

AP/Louis LanzanoMount Vernon native (and recent mayoral king-maker) Denzel Washington will be starring in an update of the 1974 Walter Matthau movie, “The Taking of Pelham 1, 2, 3,” about hijackers taking a subway train’s passengers hostage for ransom. The update is being written by David Koepp, the same guy who wrote the forthcoming “SpiderMan 4,” and will be directed by Tony Scott.

Also interesting: Steve Tisch (Giants owner, former Scarsdale resident, and part-time film producer) is also going to be one of the co-producers on “Pelham,” according to Variety.

I only hope it doesn’t take distract him from the really important Tisch project at hand: “Forrest Gump 2” — a.k.a “Forrest Schools Eli Manning.”

Steve Tisch pays another visit to Splitsville

tjndc5-5b5hdv3olqrntbhlezi_layout.jpgSpending your days lobbying for a “Forrest Gump” sequel and your nights trying to sooth Eli Manning‘s sibling inferiority complex can take its toll on your personal life. This much was clear with the announcement that mega-producer (and Giants owner) Steve Tisch and wife Jamie are getting divorced.

Tisch, a former Scarsdale resident, married Jamie in 1996 and had three children together. According to Page Six, Jamie may also be due for “a big career announcement” soon. “Now that her kids are grown,” one source said, “she’ll be focusing more on her fashion career.” Meanwhile, let’s hope that Tisch returns home to Westchester so he can keep a closer eye on his NFL franchise. Tom Hanks may need him around to get Gump II off the ground, but the Giants need him more.

“H’Wood Pair’s Splitsville” [NY Post]

(AP Photo/Jim Lord)

Steve Tisch may just get his Forrest Gump sequel after all

tjndc5-5b1c017atps1m17xbg40_layout.jpgOn the surface, the thought of doing Forrest Gump 2 seems transparently opportunistic and lame, but for Tom Hanks, Gary Sinise, and producer Steve Tisch to actually consider it, you’d have to figure there’s something solid there. And you might just be right.

Paramount has been kicking around the idea ever since the first film, after which author Winston Groom penned a follow-up novel called “Gump & Co.” It took 13 years, but according to Cinema Blend and an “absolutely reliable, unfortunately anonymous source” the project is finally out of development hell. Which is to say, producers Wendy Finerman and Steve Tisch (formerly of Scarsdale, and a friend of the Pelham Picture House) may finally have a deal with Groom and original Gump screenwriter Eric Roth.

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Partying with Pelham’s Picture House posse

With tickets ranging $250 to $1,000 — and tables up to $25,000! — Saturday’s Picture House “Cinema Soiree” was a little too rich for my blood. But that didn’t stop me from mooching some hors d’oeuvres and drinks at the pre-dinner media hour … and then sheepishly accosting as many celebrities as I could talk to.

A slew of photos, my two-second takes on the evening’s honorees (including, from left to right above, Dan Futterman, Glenn Close, Leslie Holleran, and Bennett Miller), and the scoop on the Picture House’s new fall film series, headed by Peter Travers, are all after the break.

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