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Silent Life explores Hollywood’s bisexual golden age

Twin Peaks’ Audrey Horne, actress Sherilyn Fenn, has a new role. She’s playing bisexual silent film star Alla Nazimova in what’s being called a “fantasy biopic” about Rudolph Valentino (translation: maybe it happened, maybe not, probably not, but it’s fine). From director Vladislav Kozlov, Silent Life will explore cinema’s first male sex symbol in a story that toggles from past to present. It co-stars Isabella Rossellini, Franco Nero and director Kozlov as Valentino, but we’re most excited about Fenn’s character, the legendary Nazimova. The acclaimed Russian stage actress moved to Hollywood and earned a lot of money in silent films, eventually opting to produce and write them, too. She was also notorious for her Hollywood lesbian clique, known as the “Sewing Circle,” and for the wild parties she threw at her mansion called “The Garden of Alla.” In post-production now, expect this one sometime in 2019.

Toni Erdmann loses Nicholson, gains Cholodenko

Update time: that American version of Toni Erdmann is still happening, but everything has changed. We loved the critically acclaimed German comedy from filmmaker Maren Ade. It’s about an unhappy, middle-aged woman stuck in a joyless, dead end corporate job, and her elderly weirdo of a father who keeps trying to jolt her out of her miserable rut by forcing her to participate in a series of pranks played on the world around them. The English-language version went into development almost immediately, with Lena Dunham attached to direct, and Kristen Wiig and Jack Nicholson to star. At this point, however, Wiig is still in, Nicholson has dropped out, as has Dunham, and Lisa Cholodenko (The Kids Are All Right) is now slated to direct. We think Cholodenko is a wise choice here; the story requires a strong female perspective. And though we’re a little bummed not to see Nicholson make his comeback here, because the role seems tailor made for him, now the field is wide open for any number of older actors looking for a chance to go very, very odd. Somebody call Gene Hackman.

Romeo San Vicente stans for Poseidon Adventure-era peak Hackman swagger.