Glenn Close

Glenn Close

HOLLYWOOD —  Oscar-winner Christian Bale, who has played Batman and Moses, is about to take on another superman … Steve Jobs. He’s not the first: Noah Wyle played Jobs in “Pirates of Silicon Valley” (TNT, 1999); Ashton Kucher’s film, “Jobs,” which cost $12 million and earned $36 million, was released last year. This film, like “Jobs,” also will be based on Walter Isaacson’s biography, a New York Times best seller, which sold over 500,000 copies in 2011. Why do another Steve Jobs film so soon? The answer is that the script is being written by Aaron Sorkin (who wrote “The Social Network” in 2010) and produced by Scott Rudin (who produced “The Queen,” “No Country for Old Men,” “True Grit,” “Captain Phillips” and, oh yes, “The Social Network,” among many other great films). These are top filmmakers who must feel this is worth redoing!

Bale has “Exodus: God and Kings” with Joel Edgerton, John Turturro, Aaron Paul, Sigourney Weaver and Ben Kingsley due Dec. 14, and “King of Cups” with Natalie Portman, Cate Blanchett and Frieda Pinto upcoming.

And speaking of Batman, critics already are singling out “Beetlejuice” star and former “Batman” Michael Keaton (in “Birdman”), along with “The Office’s” Steve Carell (in “Flycatcher”) as major best actor Oscar contenders.

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Glenn Close, headed back to Broadway in Edward Albee’s “A Delicate Balance,” is no stranger to the fight against Ebola. In a recent interview in The Hollywood Reporter, she revealed that her father, Dr. William Taliaferro Close, spent years in the Congo battling Ebola and serving as Congolese leader Mobutu Sese Seko’s personal physician.

When she was 7 years old, she and her family were swept into a right-wing religious cult “that gobbled up their lives.” Close remembers, “I wouldn’t trust any of my instincts because (my beliefs) had all been dictated to me.” When her family joined the cult she lived at the group’s headquarters in Caux, Switzerland. She recalls, “They had a big hotel called Mountain House, which I think is in one of Fitzgerald’s novels; we stayed there for two years.”

The virus had its first known outbreak in a small village on the Ebola River. Panic ensued following the deaths of a dozen staff members at the local hospital. Sound familiar? Her father convinced the Congolese air force to fly supplies to the village at the heart of the epidemic, but 300 people still died. Her father returned to the U.S. in 1977 and lived in Wyoming until his death in 2009. It took many years for Close to break free of the damage the cult did to her. We’re grateful she succeeded … that’s what we call a Close call!

© 2014 King Features Synd., Inc.