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Category: I Didn't Want a History Lesson

Jennifer Grey gives her support to Kenny Ortega's 'Dirty Dancing'

Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze in 'Dirty Dancing.' Grey approves Kenny Ortega's remake.

The "Dirty Dancing" remake has found itself a fan -- perhaps only one, but it's a big one -- in Jennifer Grey.

"I love @Kennyortega and trust that he will do something special #DirtyDancingRemake," Grey tweeted.

Grey played Baby -- she of "You don't put Baby in the corner" -- in the original 1987 film starring the late Patrick Swayze that grossed $214 million worldwide. The musical love story follows a 1963 summer romance that develops between a rebellious and smoldering dance instructor (Swayze) and a teenager (Grey) vacationing in the Catskills with her conservative family.

The 51-year-old actress professed her love for Ortega, the original movie's choreographer, who was signed by Lionsgate to direct the reboot, which promises to portray "the emotional excitement of first love, the thrills and complexity of sexual awakening ... and the soul-stirring power of dance."

"I'm so excited about this news, and I think there's nobody better to do this than my beloved Kenny Ortega, who is as responsible as anyone for the success of the first one. I can't wait to see what he's going to do with it," she said through her publicist.

News of the reboot was greeted coldly by naysayers who hold the original in high regard and are mindful of the franchise's failed sequel. But that didn't seem to shake Ortega.

"The opportunity to direct 'Dirty Dancing' is like returning home for me," said Ortega, who has Michael Jackson's "This Is It" and juggernaut "High School Musical" under his belt.

"I believe everywhere you look there is evidence that the talent is out there and I can't wait to begin the process of discovering the next breakout triple-threats."

We hope Ryan Gosling'S "Crazy, Stupid, Love" stunt with Emma Stone shoots him to the top of that list.

Who do you think should be cast in the remake? What role would you want Jennifer Grey to play if she came back? Tell us in comments.

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-- Nardine Saad
Twitter.com/NardineSaad

Photo: Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey in 1987's "Dirty Dancing." Credit: Vestron Pictures


Royal Wedding: Prince William, Kate Middleton juggle something old, something new

Royal Wedding: Prince William and Kate Middleton

This post has been corrected. See the note below for details.

Like any couple prepping to tie the knot, Prince William of Wales and his fiancée, Kate Middleton, have their hands full. But thanks to his regal lineage, and unlike "any couple," the royal couple have a litany of additional traditions they must adhere to.

The Ministry talked with an expert on the royal family to see how the couple will juggle something old and something new, to make comparisons with Prince Charles and Princess Diana and to check in on contemporary attitudes toward the monarchy.

Prince Charles and Lady Diana's wedding "The royal family has thought about how to balance tradition and modernity since 1981," said royals expert Susan D. Amussen, a British historian at UC Merced. "Since Diana's death, they really had to figure out where royal tradition got in the way of making sense in modern society.

"When Diana died, there were things they wanted the queen to do which the palace said she didn't do, and that wasn't satisfying to observers."

Timeline: Windsor family weddings

The public is obsessing less over this wedding than they did over Diana and Charles' nuptials, Amussen said, despite the glut of coverage the event has received.

"The monarchy has had a rough 30 years, with Charles' divorce, the death of Diana and Anne and [Andrew's] divorces," she said. "The queen's children have not been great moral exemplars and have been seen often as too much interested in their own pleasure by many critics."

That unfairly puts the pressure on William. But he's smashingly getting away with quite a few modern touches. Since, unlike his father Prince Charles, Wills isn't the direct heir to the thone, it's easier in his case for the monarchy to be more flexible when it comes to embracing modernity. This modernity was instilled in William by his late mother, who "gave him a sense of the world outside the royal bubble," Amussen said.

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Royal wedding: A who's who guide to Prince William and Kate Middleton's crowd [Photos]

Windsor-family-tree_crop

Royal Wedding pictures: A photo guide to Prince William and Kate Middleton's friends and familyThe seconds are ticking away to the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton on April 29. And as with any wedding, it can be really difficult remembering who's who among the couple's friends and family, and who's who in the bridal party.

And when it comes to the British royal family, there's the bonus issue of who's next in line for the throne.

Perhaps we Americans just don't have a strong grasp on what this whole royal lineage thing entails, what with our American Revolution hullabaloo and our Brangelina. However, it is helpful to know that William is second in line for the throne after Prince Charles, beating out his aunt Princess Anne and uncles Prince Andrew and Prince Edward. There's also a chance that Kate, who according to royals expert Laura Trevelyan will go by "Her Royal Highness Catherine" after the wedding, could be called "Princess William." And if William were to get a new territorial title -- think dukedom, earldom -- then "duchess" or "countess" would come into play.

Click on this nifty photo gallery, which could be a jolly good helper come April 29. Or click on the chart to see the House of Windsor's family tree.

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— Nardine Saad
twitter.com/NardineSaad

Chart: The Windsor family tree. Credit: Official website of the British Monarchy


'The Conspirator' movie premiere: Robert Redford, James McAvoy, Robin Wright hatch a plot

James Badge Dale, Alexis Bledel, Tom Wilkinson, Robin Wright, Robert Redford, James McAvoy, Evan Rachel Wood, Kevin Kline and Stephen Root at  "The Conspirator" premiere
This post has been corrected. See the note below for details.

Stars and supporters of the Robert Redford-directed film "The Conspirator" gathered at New York's Museum of Modern Art on Monday for the premiere of the Civil War-era film starring Robin Wright and James McAvoy.

Wright, who graced the red carpet in a crisp white suit with Redford, plays Mary Surratt, the boarding house proprietor who was accused of aiding John Wilkes Booth in his plot to kill Abraham Lincoln in April 1865.

Robin Wright at 'The Conspirator' premiere McAvoy plays Frederick Aiken, a wounded Union officer-turned-lawyer enlisted to defend Surratt in the film, which kicks off a passel of Civil War genre projects in Hollywood.

Kevin Kline, joined by wife Phoebe Cates and daughter Greta Simone Kline at the premiere, stars in the movie as Secretary of War Edwin Stanton. Click the pics for more red carpet photos.

Evan Rachel Wood and Alexis Bledel, who play Surratt's daughter Anna and Aiken's wife Sarah Weston, respectively, also attended the debut.

"Michael Clayton" Oscar nominee Tom Wilkinson plays Reverdy Johnson and Stephen Root, of NBC's "NewsRadio" fame, plays John Lloyd.

Also in attendance were cast members Norman Reedus ("The Boondock Saints") and James Badge Dale ("24").

"Gossip Girl" actresses Kelly Rutherford and Alice Callahan walked the red carpet with models Liya Kebede and Sports Illustrated cover girl Irina Shayk

Actress Karen Allen, who appeared in the Indiana Jones films and more recently "White Irish Drinkers," and Irish actress and model Kiera Chaplin also attended.

Fashion designer Anna Sui, DJ Sky Nellor and performance artist Marina Abramovic hit the Met for the premiere too.               

Justin Long, Danny Huston and Jonathan Groff appear in the film but did not attend the premiere.

"The Conspirator" works its way into theaters April 15.

For the record, 2:30 p.m. April 13: An earlier version of this post said "The Conspirator" premiere took place at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. The venue was the Museum of Modern Art.

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-- Nardine Saad
twitter.com/NardineSaad

Photo: From left to right, James Badge Dale, Alexis Bledel, Tom Wilkinson, Robin Wright, Robert Redford, James McAvoy, Evan Rachel Wood, Kevin Kline and Stephen Root at the New York premiere of "The Conspirator" at the Museum of Modern Art on Monday. Credit: Stephen Lovekin / Getty Images


Bryan Cranston cast as villain in 'Total Recall' reboot

Bryan Cranston cast in "Total Recall" Bryan Cranston, the Emmy-winning chemistry teacher of "Breaking Bad," has been cast as a villain in the remake of Columbia's "Total Recall."

The Len Wiseman-directed action flick also stars Colin Farrell as the protagonist, a factory worker in the fictional New Shanghai who believes he's a double-agent. Wiseman previously worked on the "Underworld" series and "Live Free or Die Hard."

Cranston will play the leader of the nation state Euromerica who is secretly plotting to invade New Shanghai, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

The 1990 film -- based on Philip K. Dick's short story "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" -- originally starred former Gov. Arnold Scwharzenegger and Sharon Stone. In 1999, it became a television series on then-named Sci-Fi channel starring different actors.

Cranston is currently starring alongside Matthew McConaughey in "The Lincoln Lawyer" and has finished filming Tom Hanks' "Larry Crowne." He'll soon appear with Ryan Gosling and Christina Hendricks in "Drive" and Disney's "Johnny Carter of Mars."

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-- Nardine Saad
twitter.com/NardineSaad

Photo: Bryan Cranston at the Screen Actors Guild awards. Credit: Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times


Kirstie Alley, George Lopez declare cease-fire; calm down teams Kirstie and George? [Poll]

Kirstie Alley and George Lopez spar

It seems Kirstie Alley and George Lopez have declared a cease-fire after a week's worth of barbs, fat jokes and Twitter apologies.

Alley hoofed it Monday on the premiere of the 12th cycle of "Dancing With the Stars," prompting Lopez to call her a pig on his TBS show the following evening.

"She did a nice job, her little hooves tapping away. Before the show she went to the market, and then she had roast beef, and this is her going all the way home," he said just before showing a clip of a pig squealing.

That began the public feud between the once-chubby comedian and the former "Fat Actress," who has publicly struggled with weight issues for years. Lopez's monologue sparked outrage among various women's groups, and the 60-year-old actress finally acknowledged the jokes via Twitter on Thursday.

"Don't worry about George's comments...just remember what happens to the big bad, drunk woolf...falls in a boiling pot of vodka.Piggy laughs," she wrote.

In response, and instead of bringing it up on his Thursday night telecast, Lopez took to the micro-blogging site to say he was sorry. "I misjudged the joke. No malice was intended and I apologize to Kirstie," he tweeted.

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PREACH IT! Hey, Katy, Celine, Portia, thanks for sharing! Or not.

Katy-perry-sex

It's been quite the banner week for celebrity oversharing. And we're not even talking about David Arquette. That oversharing happened, like, a week ago. This is a brand-new slew of way-too-personal stuff that stars think we need to know.

Such as? Hey, glad you didn't ask.

Katy Perry wants everybody to know that she's amazing in the sack. “Like Ludacris rapped, 'I'm a lady in the street and a freak in the bed,' " she told Now Magazine. "I can't rate myself, but if you ask [husband] Russell [Brand], I'm sure he'd give me a ten out of ten."

Meanwhile, Portia DeGeneres is telling all about her past bout with anorexia, as part of a publicity junket for her new memoir. "It wasn't that I was proud of it," she told Oprah Winfrey. "But it was certainly a recognition for my self-control. I definitely had some pretty amazing willpower to get down to 82 pounds. And that's what I was holding on to. I didn't think about anything else."

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PREACH IT! Celine Dion's pregnancy will go on -- and on

Celine Dion and Rene Angelil This week Celine Dion's husband, Rene Angelil, put out what seems like an odd statement. Unless you live in Hollywood.

"There is nothing scheduled," Angelil said about the delivery of his soon-to-be-birthed twins with Dion. "We do not have a date."

Rumors had circulated that Dion had actually set the date of the birth for Oct. 22. But, per Angelil and Dion, mais non.

"They want Celine's pregnancy to go as long as possible, at least until the first week of November," Dion’s rep said in an additional statement. "She would never intentionally endanger her unborn children by scheduling a birth early like this."

That may sound like a big "duh," given that your average breeding American does not exactly plot births down to the day either.

But in Hollywood, people actually do. They schedule births all the time -- sometimes to coincide with shoot dates, promotion schedules and the like -- and usually because the birth also involves a C-section. (Every celebrity who's anybody has had a C-section, including Madonna and Angelina Jolie.)

Occasionally, however, all that feverish planning falls apart, even among the richest and most fabulous.

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Oliver Stone steps in it with Holocaust, media conspiracy remarks

Oliver-stone-and-family

Has Oliver Stone not been paying any attention to Mel Gibson's years-long watch-your-mouth drama?

If nothing else, Stone may have learned Monday that just because you speak behind a paid-content wall, it doesn't mean the world can't hear you. Especially if your comments skew anti-Semitic -- a topic known to fuel the political fire.

Sitting down with the Sunday Times of London in an interview to promote his new documentary "South of the Border," Hollywood's master of conspiracy theories lobbed another one out there about the depiction of the Holocaust -- though in a statement Monday he backtracked on what he'd said and apologized.

After remarking in the interview that “Hitler did far more damage to the Russians than the Jewish people, 25 or 30 [million],” Stone went into conspiracy mode with the assertion that "Jewish domination of the media" in the U.S. was to blame for Holocaust deaths getting a bigger spotlight than the millions of deaths that occurred in Russia in World War II.

The rest of the quote suggested that, in addition, U.S. foreign policy in general had been messed up by Jews both foreign and domestic: “There’s a major lobby in the United States," Stone said. "They are hard workers. They stay on top of every comment, the most powerful lobby in Washington. Israel has [messed] up United States foreign policy for years.”

Stone responded Monday with a statement: "In trying to make a broader historical point about the range of atrocities the Germans committed against many people, I made a clumsy association about the Holocaust, for which I am sorry and I regret. Jews obviously do not control media or any other industry. The fact ...

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PREACH IT! Yes, Lindsay Lohan has a job and you don't. Get over it.

Lilo-face
So, yes, it’s officially official: Lindsay Lohan is going where Rose McGowan and Anna Faris have declined to tread. Lohan has signed on to play Linda Lovelace in a biopic about the star of the porn classic “Deep Throat.”

The operative phrase here? Not “porn classic,” fun as that may be. Nope, it’s “signed on.” As in, signed on to work. At a job. That someone is paying Lindsay Lohan to do.

This is the same Lohan who was once labeled with the dreaded “I” word by manager-producer Bernie Brillstein: "I hope they put her in jail for as long as they can,” Brillstein said to the New York Times back in 2007. “Maybe she'll realize how serious it is. I believe she's uninsurable. And when you're uninsurable in this town, you're done."

Done, eh? Apparently not. In fact, if you dig a little deeper into the history of hot-mess stars, you find ...

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