- The Washington Times - Monday, September 13, 2004

Hollywood Republicans

Right-leaning actors should be considered an endangered species, especially in these partisan times.

That didn’t stop filmmaker and former Democratic speechwriter Jesse Moss from rounding up the unusual suspects for a documentary looking at how conservative politics and entertainment mix.

“The AMC Project: Rated R: Republicans in Hollywood” explores the impact being a conservative entertainer has on industry players.

The special debuts at 10 tonight on AMC.

“Republicans in Hollywood” speaks to outspoken conservatives such as Patricia Heaton, Drew Carey, Pat Sajak, Ben Stein and director Ivan Reitman about how their political leanings affect the projects offered to them and their relationships with their Democratic peers.

Mr. Moss mixes in snippets of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s successful gubernatorial campaign to illustrate a potential dent in liberal Hollywood’s armor.

‘Happy Days,’ indeed

Reunion specials equal ratings gold, so ABC is looking to its happier days for a Nielsen boost.

The network plans to assemble the original “Happy Days” cast to celebrate the show’s 30th anniversary later this season.

Yes, it has been three decades since Fonzie first fixed the jukebox by slapping it with his fist and Ralph Malph told his first corny joke.

The network promises to bring back all the key players for the program, including Ron Howard, Scott Baio, Tom Bosley, Erin Moran, Don Most, Marion Ross, Anson Williams and Henry Winkler. Along for the festivities will be part-timers such as Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams, who spun their “Days” appearances into their own long-running sitcom, “Laverne & Shirley.”

The special will include numerous show clips, behind-the-scenes footage, including a cast-and-crew softball game, and reflections from show creator Garry Marshall.

The show, set in Milwaukee in the 1950s, began production in 1974.

Baseball heals

It has become a modern tradition to root against the deep-pocketed New York Yankees come playoff season.

That changed three years ago, as did so very much in the wake of the September 11 attacks.

HBO looks back at the role baseball played in distracting a nation with “Nine Innings From Ground Zero,” a new documentary airing at 10 tonight.

The special features interviews with former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, President George W. Bush, firefighters and several ballplayers who gave their all to make the 2001 World Series one to remember.

The documentary begins with how baseball resumed play and provided an outlet for many Americans to escape their feelings of horror.

Bronx Bomber fans will recall the Game 7 loss that allowed the young Arizona Diamondbacks franchise to celebrate its first World Series win. Nevertheless, the gritty play of the often overmatched Yankees gave their home city an effort of which to be proud.

Big screen ‘O’

Warner Bros. is booking “Hawaii Five-O” as the latest classic TV show to get a big-screen boost.

The studio reportedly intends to make a film based on the cop drama, which ran from 1968 to 1980, according to Associated Press, citing a report in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin.

“Ocean’s Twelve” screenwriter George Nolfi will pen the new film, the newspaper said.

The choice of who will play Steve McGarrett (Jack Lord in the series) and who will direct will not be made until the script is completed and approved.

If that occurs this fall, the 80-day filming in Hawaii could begin late next spring for a summer 2006 release.

Compiled by Christian Toto from staff and wire reports.

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