HOLLYWOOD — Get ready for “the end of the world as we know it.” Following the $120 million Tom Cruise/Morgan Freeman epic “Oblivion” are five more films. They start June 7 with Will and Jaden Smith’s $130 million “After Earth,” directed by M. Night Shyamalan, followed by James Franco/Seth Rogan’s science-fiction comedy “This Is the Earth” on June 12. Next, we’ll finally see the long-awaited $200 million Brad Pitt vehicle “World War Z” on June 21, the same date as “Pacific Rim” debuts featuring “Sons of Anarchy” star Charlie Hunnam. Aug. 9 brings Matt Damon and Jody Foster in the $120 million “Elysium.” All are “low budget” compared with the most expensive film ever made: “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End,” which cost $300 million, but grossed nearly a billion dollars.
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David Spade (“Rules of Engagement”/“Just Shoot Me”) has a You Tube video lampooning celebrities doing reverse-mortgage commercials. For five minutes he lists his credits, but never gets around to reverse mortgages. While it’s very funny, it’s really not a laughing matter. Some of these reverse mortgage companies have recruited trustworthy celebrities such as Robert Wagner (“Hart to Hart”), Henry “The Fonz” Winkler (“Happy Days”), Fred Thompson (“Law & Order”), Pat Boone (1950s pop singer), Barbara Eden (“I Dream of Jeannie”) and Wayne Rogers of “M.A.S.H.”
If you’re not careful, the financial company can wind up with the lion’s share of what your home is worth. It can charge origination fees, closing costs, large fees to “get your house up to speed” (for a quick sale later), charge interest on what you owe on the backend and use up all or most of your home’s equity, leaving fewer assets for your heirs. Because you still own your home, you’re on the hook for property taxes, insurance, utilities, fuel, maintenance and other expenses. I sure hope these celebrities were fully aware before they loaned their names.
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Here’s what actors are being paid these days: Anne Hathaway makes $10 million a picture, but as usual, the men make more. Mark Wahlberg makes $27 million a pop, Johnny Depp and Will Smith get $30 million a picture; Ben Stiller gets $33 million; Brad Pitt earns $35.5 million; Adam Sandler and Dwayne Johnson pull in $36 million each; while Leonardo DiCaprio’s $37 million pales by comparison to Tom Cruise’s $75 million a film. That’s one neighborhood I’d love to cruise through anytime!
© 2013 King Features Synd., Inc.