By Eileen Murphy
Judging by the number of celebrities who were in Irving Plaza last Tuesday night, hospital emergency rooms must have been full of personal assistants — all of them sleep-deprived and bloody-fingered from dialing in for tickets to U2’s super-exclusive, "fans only" show at NYC’s Irving Plaza.
We hear that the VIP section included Smashing Pumpkins’ frontman Billy Corgan, actor/director Ed Burns, soon-to-be-ex-Revlon model Cindy Crawford, Rolling Stone publisher Jann Wenner, Miramax bigshot Harvey Weinstein and the band’s longtime supermodel pal, Christy Turlington. (Christy is turning out to be quite the Irish rock aficionado, since we hear she’s a fan of a local Irish group who, alas, must remain nameless.)
The song lineup included four cuts from the new album, including our faves, "Stuck in a Moment You Can’t Get Out Of" and "Elevation," plus some interesting covers, like the Who’s "Won’t Get Fooled Again." Afterward, everyone trooped down to the post-show party at "Lotus," before the lads slipped off to chug some champers at the Ice Bar in TriBeCa.
In more U2 news, we hear it’s no more Mr. Nice Guy for Bono when it comes to his "Million Dollar Hotel" project and its increasingly bitchy star, Mel Gibson.
We told you a few months ago that the actor has been busily trashing the Bono-scripted, Wim Wenders-directed movie. Mel told reporters that the movie was — and there’s just no way to put this delicately — "as boring as a dog’s ass."
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We’re sure that everyone will defer to Mel’s judgment with regard to canine rumps, but Bono is understandably upset by this burst of friendly fire.
"We had a 600-pound gorilla who was supposed to be our bodyguard on the project," he said. "Now he’s sitting on our head."
Bono said he thinks Mel is trash-talking the film because he doesn’t like his own performance. And, maybe, because he’s uncomfortable with the genre.
"It’s not one of those normal, justifiable homicide-type movies," he cracked. Saucer of milk, anyone?
‘Piece’ of the action
You know that horrible feeling you have when you’ve found the perfect dress to wear on a hot date that night and it’s marked down to almost nothing and the store is closing in five minutes and the cashier looks at you and says, "Charge declined"?
Well, multiply that feeling by a factor of nine million and you’ll have some idea of how Barry Levinson felt when he ran out of money while in the post-production stage of his upcoming movie, "An Everlasting Piece."
It seems that the director had spent the entire $9 million budget for the movie about a couple of toupee salesmen selling rugs to baldies of every religious stripe in Northern Ireland. Unfortunately, the money didn’t cover a musical score. So what’s an Academy Award-winning director to do? You call in Hans Zimmer — the guy who wrote the music for "Rain Man," "Mission Impossible 2" and "The Lion King" — and you make him an offer just he can’t refuse.
No, we’re not talking about a horse’s head on the duvet or anything like that. Levinson and Zimmer struck a deal that will net Zimmer the princely sum of one dollar for a full movie’s worth of music.
Now, assuming that the movie will run 90 minutes, plus intro and credits, Zimmer will get one cent for every minute of music. And that’s before taxes.
"Hans and Barry are friends," explained Zimmer’s publicist, Mo Nakamoto. "And his friend was in a bind." Hey, with friends like him, you don’t need guardian angels . . .
Ronan’s personal boy zone
Boyzone might be defunct, and then again, it might not be — only their hairdressers know for sure! — but singer Ronan Keating is taking no chances.
In addition to his thriving solo career and his busy schedule keeping those Westlife boyz in line, Ro and his wife Yvonne, have been getting fruitful, if you know what we mean. And now the happy couple are ready to multiply — they’re expecting another baby early in the new millennium (which actually starts on Jan. 1, 2001 and, no, we’re not arguing about it). And, according to the Sunday Independent, the little newcomer is a boy. Which will make the couple’s home something of a . . . you guessed it . . . boy zone. Yes, you can groan now.
Docuclub screening at MoMA
We always take pride in the accomplishments of our co-workers, even when those co-workers don’t brave the cold and the rain to fetch us cappuccino from Starbucks.
So we’re delighted to announce that "Cusco: Portrait Of A City at the End of The Century," a documentary shot in the ancient Inca Capital of the Andes in the weeks leading up to Millennium night last year, will be screened at New York’s prestigious MoMA on Wednesday, Dec. 13, at 6:30 p.m. The Echo’s own Michael Gray was on board as associate producer, and went on location with the crew 12,000 feet above sea level for the duration of the shoot.
The documentary features extraordinary footage of the ceremonies and rituals associated with the lost culture of the Incas and will be seen more widely in the coming months at a variety of film festivals. The documentary is directed by Cork native Donal O’Ceilleachair and is produced by Susie Fallon of Fair Isle Films. The film is being shown as part of a "work-in-progress" series, and seating is limited to members only, so become a member or have yourself surgically attached to someone who is.
"I was lying on my bed, and I have this skylight above [it]. It was one of those special mornings, and all the windows were opened, and it was so beautiful. And I was just lying there, and the phone rings. And it’s my best friend . . . and she says, ‘Did you see "The Sun"?’ And I said, ‘Yes, it’s so beautiful.’ "
– Andrea Corr on what it’s like being written about in the tabloids.
Corr-nering the market
Corrs fans who pick up the Irish music magazine Hot Press will get to vote for their favorite singing sibling this week. The current issue has been printed with one of for covers, each featuring a different band member.
Something tells us that the Andrea cover will sell out, since she’s been named one of the world’s most beautiful women in a European poll. But sisters Sharon and Caroline are equally easy on the eyes, according to an informal poll of the Irish Echo’s male staffers. And the mag’s female readers can ooh and ahh over copies featuring Jim, the only guy in the group. And of course, there will be plenty of hard-Corr fans who’ll want to collect all four, which should make publisher Niall Stokes very happy. Which, when we think about it, is a win-win-win-win-win situation all around.
In more Corr news, we hear that if the mountain can’t alter its schedule to suit Mohammed, Mohammed will come to the mountain.
We hear that the Irish family supergroup (Mohammed) were President Clinton’s (the mountain’s) special guests at this year’s White House Christmas party. There had been some talk of the band performing for the Prez when he visits their hometown of Dundalk during his Irish visit, but the band’s touring schedule didn’t allow them a break. Instead, they got the full VIP treatment in Washington, and all they had to do was sing for their supper.
Turn up the Ronan and give us a few Britneys
So, if we were to tell you to cut The Edge before you plop yourself in front of the telly with a few Britneys, you’d think we’d gone Jarvis, wouldn’t you?
For those of you who aren’t familiar with the new language fad that’s sweeping Ireland, what you’ve just read is Popney — a close cousin to Cockney rhyming slang. The trick is that the words you mean have to rhyme with the name of a fairly well-known pop star. So, what we actually said was to cut the garden hedge (The Edge) before hoisting a few beers (Britney Spears). Now, we’re not off our rocker (Jarvis Cocker), are we?
So, let’s try a little more.
"Will somebody shut that Andrea? You’re letting out the Ronan, and I think I’m coming down with the U2." This, of course, translates to: "Will somebody shut the door (Andrea Corr)? You’re letting out the central heating (Ronan Keating), and I think I’m coming down with the flu (U2)."
The slang comes in handy in all situations. For instance, if you’re in a restaurant, you may want to order some Eddie on your burger (Eddie Vedder = cheddar), to be washed down with a Britney (as above) and maybe a nice Carlos for dessert (Carlos Santana = banana). If your significant other is nagging you to exercise more, you could tell him that you spent hours at the Fatboy yesterday (Fatboy Slim = gym) on the stationary George (George Michael = cycle) and now you’ve a Shania in your back (Shania Twain = pain).
Or perhaps you could ask your doctor to remove that annoying Billy with the hair growing out of it (Billy Joel = mole). Heading off on a long car ride? Make sure everybody visits the Motley before you leave (Motley Crue = loo). Is your pet sick? Take it to the Alanis right away (Alanis Morrisette = vet).
Not in the holiday spirit this year? Don’t be such a Shane (Shane Lynch = grinch)! Playing golf? Don’t hit the links without your personal Puff Daddy (golf caddy) at your side. And no cheating, or your golf buddy might go a bit Mariah and punch you in the Axl (Mariah Carey = lairy, or mean; Axl Rose = nose).
The hopelessly trendy among you can stay up to date on Popney by checking out new postings on www.music365.com. If you have an idea for a rhyming combo, submit it to them via e-mail and if they like it, it will become part of the lingo (and they’ll post your name on the website). We’ve already sent off our two suggestions: Larry Mullen (sullen) and Bob Geldof (cough). You guys don’t think they ‘N Sync, do you?
Morning Star to shine — at night
One of our favorite local Irish bands, Morning Star, called to tell us that they’ve had a couple of last-minute additions to their performance schedule, so we thought we’d pass on the good news. You can catch them on Saturday, Dec. 16, and Saturday, Dec. 23, at The Pig "N " Whistle Pub and Restaurant, 688 3rd Ave., NYC. For information, call (212) 688-4646.