By Cindy Elavsky
Q: I really liked the “Life on Mars” drama that was on ABC this past season. My friend told me that the show was based on a U.K. series. If so, where can I see episodes of that version? — Jonathan D., via e-mail
A: Unfortunately, “Life on Mars” did not quite catch on with American audiences like the British version has in the U.K. The time-travel police drama aired for two seasons on BBC One and BBC America, and “Life on Mars, Series 1” was recently made available on DVD.
To be quite honest, I like the U.K. version better than the American. John Simm and Philip Glenister — who play Sam Tyler and Gene Hunt, respectively — have remarkable chemistry, and the show itself is a fresh idea with a great mix of drama and wit. The four-disc DVD set is available at most retail stores, as well as online outlets such as amazon.com.
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Q: I was shocked to hear about the passing of writer/director John Hughes. How are his Hollywood friends dealing with the news? — Ginnie F., Duluth, Minn.
A: I recently had the chance to catch up with Joan Cusack, who stars in the new Lifetime Television movie “Acceptance.” Joan got her big break in the ultimate teen flick, “Sixteen Candles,” when she was just 21 years old. She was as surprised and as saddened as we all were to hear that John Hughes had died.
She recalls: “If he hadn’t lived in Chicago and been making teen movies when I was a teenager, I’d never be in this business, ever. There’s just no way. John Hughes came along, and I got into a little part in the film (’Sixteen Candles’) and got a break. I feel like I owe everything to him. John was such an empowering presence. He said that teenagers are alive and thinking and feeling and doing all sorts of interesting things.”
To read the interview in its entirety, go to www.celebrityextraonline.com and click on “Interviews.”
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Q: I am so psyched for the new Fox show “Glee” to start this fall. I am wondering if we’ll get the chance to hear the multitalented Jane Lynch sing. She was a wonderful singer in “A Mighty Wind.” — Paul M. in New Jersey
A: While there are no immediate plans for Ms. Lynch to wow us with her vocal chops, she is slated to dance the Lindy Hop with co-star Matthew Morrison in one of the first few episodes. I have the feeling that the writers will use her vocal talents someday soon. Jane told me during an interview a few years back that her ideal role would involve singing, and she confided, “If someone handed me a script where I got to sing, and it was funny, moving and smart, I’d do it in a second!”
Have a question for Cindy? E-mail her at [email protected], or write to her in care of King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475. Visit her new Web site at www.celebrityextraonline.com.
© 2009 King Features Synd., Inc.