Tag Archives: Gilles Marini

Charlie Sheen Has Goddesses, but Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez Have Angels

Emilio Estevez, Martin Sheen

It would be an irony among ironies if Charlie Sheen’s manic media blitz wound up helping “The Way” — the film about a father retracing his dead son’s pilgrimage along Spain’s Camino de Santiago that stars his father, Martin Sheen, and was directed by his brother, Emilio Estevez.

This is the film that Estevez and the senior Sheen have been trying to promote in-between coping with questions about Charlie and his behavior.  And talk about juxtaposing the profane and the sacred — while Charlie’s been extolling the virtues of his porn star  “goddesses” all over TV, Emilio and Martin have been talking to college groups and religious press about encountering “small miracles on a daily basis” in making their labor of love film.  That’s how Martin put it when he spoke to the Independent Catholic News:

 “’People would walk in front of the screen, and spoil the scene and then we realised it was something beautiful. We were just led along the way to surrender to everything that occurred….. Swept along – it was as if a band of angels was dragging us along this journey.’”

Emilio calls the film “pro people, pro life not anti-anything.”

 Their Malta premiere was a fundraiser for Pope John XXIII Peace Lab. 

 Small wonder Catholic and Protestant groups are already poised to embrace the movie, though critics praise it for being not overtly religious.  Martin has made it clear that they wanted to honor the pilgrimage journey taken by people who may be curious, may be spirtual seekers, may be bereaved, may be confronted with major life decisions.   “It’s not something Americans do.  Few Americans  would meditate for six weeks on a long walk,” he said in Dublin.  “But frankly they should try it.”

 The film opens in the U.K. in time for Easter next month.  Estevez has said that in advance of the movie’s Sept. 30 U.S. opening, he and his fahter plan to take a 30-day, 30-city cross-country promotion bus trip from Los Angeles to New York.  Here’s hoping that Charlie is on a much better path well before that.

 GOING BAD:  Gilles Marini would like tp go from being a lover to, well, maybe even a fighter during his “Brothers & Sisters” hiatus.  “My dream would be to get an independent feature with a lot of texture, or a part in a blockbuster where people would say, ‘I know this guy from somewhere, but where?’  So different that they don’t recognize me.” 

The actor currently making hearts flutter as sexy, romantic Luc Laurent says playing a villain would definitely be a worthy idea.  “Why not?  I’m open to so many different things.  Someone who is a bad boy, or, to be bold, someone who is an atrocious monster.  If I break the image, it will make me more real as an actor.”  

 CASTING CORNER:  Bring your own, um, whatever.  How about this for a casting notice?  For a fetish party sequence in an upcoming “CSI” episodes, casting forces wanted 38-to-45-year-olds, “hot men and women….should have own fetish gear…Please specify in notes what kind of gear you have.”  They really have a taste for fetish stories on that show, have you noticed?

 NBC certainly has a taste for fantasy this pilot season.  Not only is there the police show set in a magical land that we mentioned the other day — “17th Precinct,” that takes place in a place called Excelsior, where everyone uses magic except for a threatening group called The Stoics, who aim to destroy magic with science.  There is also “Grimm,” about a young police officer (here in contemporary America) who thinks he is losing his mind because he keeps having visions of people turning into monsters.  But it turns out, he’s a special being with a special ability to see such goings-on.  Actually, that’s not so special.  We see people turning into monsters in Hollywood all the time.

 Meanwhile, over at ABC, casting is underway for “Grace,” a family drama-with-comedy set in the world of professional dance.  Producers have the innovative idea of using dance as subtext and background throughout the episodes, as “family patriarch Michael Grace communicates through dance.”  Worth a look, certainly.

Gilles Marini Plans Gathering of ‘DWTS’ Pals to View His ‘Royal Pains’ Guesting

Gilles Marini, Reshma Shetty USA Network photos


The question of whether there’ll be a sixth season of ABC’s “Brothers and Sisters” has yet to be decided — but some are already starting a letter writing campaign.  That’s gratifying news to the show’s Gilles Marini, who points out, “I think the word as we speak is very positive.  You know, the network does not have to tell us tomorrow, ‘Oh, you guys are picked up.’  There is time.  They’ll crunch the numbers and see what their options are.

“I thank ABC/Disney for bringing us back for five seasons.  That is extremely rare,” he coninues.  “I hope that the show goes on and on, but whenever it is the end, I’d like to hear, ‘Guys, this is the last season.  Let’s ride it out the right way,’ and they allow us to close the storylines instead of abruptly stopping it.”  The Frenchman, whose romantic Luc Laurent character, love of Rachel Giffiths’ Sarah Walker, has become a “Brothers & Sisters” mainstay, adds, “The fan base around the world is massive.  The social network messages we get come from countries you’ve never even heard of before.  It’s very rewarding, and all that much more reason you don’t want to make the fans feel somehow let down.”

He also points out, “We’ve been pretty steady in the ratings, even against monsters like the Grammys.”

Sexy Marini plays “a choreographer who is very hard-headed” — who comes down with a life-threatening illness — on the season finale episode of the USA Network’s “Royal Pains” Feb. 24.  “Are they going to be able to save him?

Eh!  We’ll see,” says Marini.  He reports he’s going to have a big viewing party at home for the event.  “I think I’m going to invite Cheryl Burke and all my ‘Dancing With the Stars’ friends to come and check out my dancing on the show.   We are working on the tango for her wedding when my character gets extremely ill.”

Coincidentally, Marini was already friendly with “Royal Pains” lead Mark Feuerstein before his casting.  They shop at the same market in Studio City, he says, and “I see him there all the time.  I think he met my wife before I met him, talking about food.  I think we were by the tamales,” he jokes.  “He’s a very nice man.  It was a great group of people, doing this show.”

The “Royal Pains” guesting is Marini’s second such busman’s holiday this season.  He also played a magician involved in a murder case on “Castle” recently. “I had a month off ‘Brothers and Sisters,’ and as soon as a couple of producers heard that was the case, I got to do these other TV shows — two very good TV shows.  ‘Castle’ was such an event for me — from the wardrobe to the character, it was completely different from ‘Brothers and Sisters.'”

Barbra Streisand Universal photo

HITTING THE HIGH NOTES:  Besides “Glee’s” Lea Michelle getting to meet and interact with her idol, Barbra Streisand, behind the scenes at last Sunday’s Grammy show (wouldn’tcha love to see Streisand as Lea’s grandmother?  Wouldn’t it be the all-time cameo?) Streisand was in another little piece of show biz history.   While the audience showed its love with a standing ovation for Streisand’s performance of “Evergreen,” there was a love story in the orchestra behind her.   The conductor for this rendition of the song she had written for “A Star Is Born” and for which she won the Oscar as composer (the first female composer ever to win an Oscar in one of the musical categories) was the noted Ian Freebairn-Smith, who had conducted her recording of her song for the film and the eventual album three and a half decades before.   First violinist for the Grammy performance of the song was Sharon Freebairn-Smith who had filled the same position for the original recording session when she and Ian were first in love.  For Sunday night’s Emmy rendition of the song, their daughter, Vanessa, was a cellist.

MYTH AS GOOD AS A MILE?:  David E. Kelley’s much-talked-about “Wonder Woman” TV series reboot still needs its Wonder Woman/Diana Prince as this is being written, as well as her coworker and confidante, Mindy Mayer, and the acting CEO of Diana Prince’s company, Henry Demeter.  This version has the Amazonian super heroine as a corporate executive who keeps her crime-fighting persona secret.

OUT OF THIS WORLD:  While Stephen King fans are absorbed in the hot speculation over Ron Howard’s plans to adapt the novelist’s Dark Tower series for film AND television, Howard and co. are moving forward with casting for the first “Dark Tower” movie.  A potentially career-making role for an under-11-year-old boy is that of Jake Chambers, described as “the only child of an upper middle class Manhattan family who has visions of another world and is convinced he has something of cosmic importance to do” — while his family believes he’s mentally unhinged.  The flick is due to commence production in September in New York, with a 2013 release date already slated.

Still to be determined, of course, is who will fill the “Dark Tower” lead that will last through the feature and following mini-series.  Howard recently addressed internet reports that Javier Bardem and Viggo Mortensen are prospects, noting that getting such a long commitment from such big names would be complicated to say the least.

Sexy Gilles Marini Pours it on for ‘Brothers & Sisters’

 Gilles Marini returns to “Brothers & Sisters” Feb. 21 as Luc Laurent, the — be-still-our-beating-hearts — French lover of Rachel Griffiths’ Sarah Walker character on the show. To say he’s happy about that is an understatement.

“To think, when I came here, I did not speak English,” says the 34-year-old Frenchman, who hails from Cannes. “And now, I’m living the perfect American dream, with my wife and our little American kids we had here.”

In fact, Gilles’ and wife Carole’s young son and daughter are two of the reasons he says “Brothers & Sisters” is just right for him, offering a schedule that “makes it possible for me to see my kids off to school in the morning, or tuck them into bed every night.”

He admits, “You always worry. I thought, ‘I’m going to be playing the boyfriend. Where can the story take me?'” However, “I come in with a twist in my character’s background,” he reveals. “It’s the jackpot for me.”

If you saw the “Sex in the City” movie, you saw Gilles — all of him, in the shower — as Kim Cattrall’s neighbor and lust object. And, if you saw him on “Dancing With the Stars,” no doubt you recall he came close to victory in the season ultimately won by Olympic Gold Medalist Shawn Johnson.

Now, working alongside Rachel, Sally Field and the rest of the “Brothers & Sisters” troupe, he says he’s overwhelmed to be in the presence of “that many actors with that much talent all at the same time.

“(Co-Executive Producer) Michael Morris told me, ‘You’re working so hard, Gilles. You always come in prepared every day, every second.’ But, it’s not work to me. I think this is the chance of a lifetime to be on this show, and to hopefully show American audiences that I deserve to be here.”

Cliff Curtis

Cliff Curtis

THE VIDEOLAND VIEW:  NBC’s freshman “Trauma” series was considered such a sure-shot for early extinction that members of the crew gave up their apartments on San Francisco location. But not Cliff Curtis, the New Zealand star who plays a cocky helicopter pilot in the drama about daring, first-response paramedics.

“Trauma” got off to such a rough start that, a month after its debut in September, NBC announced it wouldn’t renew it. Then, in November, the network called for three more episodes. And then last month, as the cancellation of “The Jay Leno Show” left NBC with mucho hours of prime time to fill, they added four more episodes of “Trauma.”

Still, “I never had any doubts,” says Curtis. “From the beginning, I had confidence that if we did the best work we could, if we kept trying to raise the bar, the audience would grow to appreciate the show. And, it has.”

With a pedigree including Executive Producer/director Peter Berg (“Friday Night Lights,” “Hancock”), the show did take some time to find its footing creatively. Curtis concedes, “The characters weren’t developed properly at first. We took a lot of creative license, but learned from it. We listened to the audience and to critics, and were able to satisfy a lot of complaints about the characters. We improved the humor and the action on the front line.

“When things were their worst, I watched with a wry smile and was quietly confident,” he says. “And now, I wouldn’t be surprised that after we return to the lineup following the Winter Olympics, we’ll do so well that we’ll be renewed for another season.”

In fact, the “Whale Rider” big-screen star is so confident that he’s involved with a long-range hit, he’s saying, after 15 years of commuting from New Zealand to the U.S. for film work, that he’d be ready to move his wife and their two children to these shores, “To settle down for at least a few years in San Francisco. I love it there.”


Brenda Song

Brenda Song


It’s a b-i-i-g difference, going from the Disney Channel to a David Fincher film with Jesse Eisenberg, Justin Timberlake and Andrew Garfield, but that’s what beautiful 21-year-old Brenda Song has done.

She’s now back at work in her best-known role — as kooky heiress London Tipton on “The Suite Life on Deck” — after wrapping the big-screen “Social Network.” It’s the story of the founders of Facebook — Mark Zuckerberg, Sean Parker and Eduardo Saverin.

Shooting the film, Brenda says, “has been one of the most amazing experiences of my life. It’s such an honor to work with David. ‘Fight Club’ is one of my favorite movies. He’s absolutely brilliant.”

She adds, “Mix that with Aaron Sorkin’s writing and I’m lost for words. It’s like watching geniuses at work. The cast has been soooo amazing. I’m in love with Andrew and Jesse. We had so much fun.”

Her character, Christy “kind of set her sights on Eduardo (Garfield) and will do everything in her power to be with him. It was quite a change from London — ha ha,” she adds in an online interview.

Fear not, London fans. Brenda is not forsaking the ditzy character she’s been playing since 2005. “Suite Life on Deck” has new episodes coming up, including the March 5-debuting installment that has London, Zack and Cody (Dylan and Cole Sprouse) in fairytale fantasies. Hers is “Snow White” — as the evil queen.

WITCHY WOMAN: Katerina Graham, who plays witch Bonnie on the CW’s “Vampire Diaries,” tells us “I hope she stays a good witch. I think she’s such a great role model for a lot of girls.”

Yes, and it’s very hard to find good teen role models in today’s TV landscape. For instance, Bonnie sure beats Grace (Megan Park), the Christian girl in Brenda Hampton’s “Secret Life of the American Teenager,” who believes that her having had sex with her boyfriend caused her father’s death in a plane crash — divine retribution? — and has gone on to advocate masturbation.

And then of course there’s Quinn Fabray (Donna Agron) of “Glee,” the Christian former head of the Celibacy Club, pregnant by one guy and girlfriend of another.

The fact is, as framed by the majority of Hollywood creative types, you’re bound to do better, role model-wise, with witches and vampires than religious types.

With reports by Emily-Fortune Feimster