Warren Beatty


HOLLYWOOD —  Warren Beatty has completed filming his first movie since 2001. Beatty wrote, directed and stars as the eccentric, reclusive millionaire Howard Hughes, with Beatty’s wife, Annette Bening, playing Hughes’ wife. Also in the cast are Lily Collins, Matthew Broderick, Alec Baldwin and Martin Sheen. Beatty’s last film was “Town and Country,” with an equally impressive cast: Diane Keaton, Goldie Hawn, Garry Shandling, Jenna Elfman and Charlton Heston. Unfortunately it cost $90 million to produce but only made $10.5 million.

Beatty won an Oscar and a Golden Globe award for directing “Reds” (1981), which cost $32 million and earned $50 million (a good sum for that time). In addition, “Dick Tracy” cost $46 million and earned $163 million, and “Bugsy” cost $30 million and took in $50 million. The as-yet-untitled Hughes biopic, expected to open in May 2015, cost a modest $26.7 million to make.
* * *
The next rising star is Nicholas Hoult. You may have seen him recently with Elle Fanning in “The Young Ones,” or as Hank McCoy/Beast in “X Men: Days of Future Past.” His next films are “Dark Places” with Charlize Theron, Christina Hendricks and Chloe Grace Moretz, out Sept. 1; “Mad Max: Fury Road,” with Tom Ford, Charlize Theron and Riley Keough (Elvis Presley’s granddaughter), out May 2015; and the British crime thriller “Kill Your Friends.” Hoult currently is shooting “Autobahn” with Oscar winners Anthony Hopkins and Ben Kingsley.
* * *
Lisa Whelchel and Kim Fields had a mini “Facts of Life” reunion in the Hallmark Channel’s film “For Better or Worse.” It aired July 19, but check your local listings; it will air again. Whelchel was last in “A Medea Christmas” with Tyler Perry and Larry the Cable Guy. Fields was last seen with Cameron Diaz and Jennifer Lopez in “What to Expect When You’re Expecting.”

“Facts of Life” castmate Nancy McKeon co-starred in the 2011 Hallmark Channel film “Love Begins,” while Mindy Cohen appeared in an episode of “Hot in Cleveland” in 2011 and on “The Middle” last May. Charlotte Rae (now 88 years young) was last seen in the thriller “Love, Sick Love” with comedian Jim Gaffigan in April 2013. Mackenzie Astin (son of Patty Duke and John Astin) was last in 2012’s “Hell and Mr. Fudge,” with John Wesley Shipp and “Y&R’s” Eileen Davidson.

Oh yes, there also was a promising young newcomer on the show from 1985-87. I once did an at-home shooting with him in his tiny apartment in Hollywood, before he went on to do “ER” and became the multiple Oscar-winning George Clooney. He’s one actor who learned “The Facts of Life” and put them to good use, both on and off the screen!
* * *
“Brooklyn Nine-Nine” star Terry Crews is taking over the hosting chores of the syndicated “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” from Cedric the Entertainer. The former NFL star and Old Spice pitchman will have to be quick on his feet to top Cedric. Insiders say he’ll “crews” through the job and become a millionaire quicker than the contestants.

© 2014 King Features Synd., Inc.