Mark Wahlberg has
distanced himself from his Marky Mark-Calvin Klein
pants-dropping days, but a lucky audience Wednesday night at the
Metreon got an eyeful of his toned torso -- clad in leather, no
less -- in the new movie "Rock Star."
"I was comfortable
(going shirtless) because I had all that hair," he said at
the W Hotel party after the New Yorker Film Series screening.
Wahlberg's long, poufy heavy-metal 'do in the movie is mostly
extensions, though he grew his own mane for a year and a half
for the role.
Wahlberg, in town for
about a second before hopping the red-eye to New York,
looked airport-ready in
sweater, T-shirt, jeans and work boots. He called his current
hairstyle "a mess," doffing his baseball cap to reveal
a cropped and slightly mussed look.
backstage Betties and artfully trashed hotel rooms are a far cry
from Wahlberg's own days touring with the Funky Bunch, he says.
"I tried to create
that, but my audience was 13-year-old girls and their
mothers," he said. "And maybe one 40-year-old guy who
came to see me in my underwear."
The "Planet of the
Apes" star had trouble deciding which were scarier --
groupies or apes. "That's a tough one," he said.
"I would have to say apes. Especially ("Planet"
villain) Tim Roth."
Wahlberg chatted at the
party with San Francisco's Stephan Jenkins, the Third Eye Blind
front man who plays his untalented singing rival in "Rock
Star, " which opens today. Jenkins says the movie got the
excesses of the road just right. He admits to having indulged in
a few of those excesses, but says he stopped short of destroying
"I have too much
respect for working people. I couldn't do that to the
DOUBLE DESK DUTY: Local
actors often have to moonlight to pay the rent. Still, Helen
Shumaker's day job while making "Haiku Tunnel" was a
tad unusual. She worked as a secretary while she was playing one
in the new comedy about underlings in a Financial District law
Shumaker laughed at the
idea that she might confuse her secretarial duties onscreen and
off. "Nah," she assured me. "I know when I'm
acting." That's just as well for her real-life office
mates. Her character, Marlina, is an uber secretary so tightly
wound she doesn't need a clock to get to the office on time. Her
efficiency is in direct contrast to the mess made by a temp
named Josh, played by Josh Kornbluth. The movie is based on a
Kornbluth monologue, which in turn was inspired by his
experiences as an S.F. office temp.
"Frankly, I don't
think the two of us have ever discussed secretarial work, "
Shumaker said. "Why would we need to? There is next to
nothing interesting about it."
Shumaker has been a
fixture on New York and San Francisco stages, most spectacularly
in the one-woman show "Mona Rogers in Person," in
which her imposing presence made her appear a foot taller than
her 5 feet. Not only is Marlina her biggest movie role, but
Shumaker's face is also prominent on the "Haiku
Tunnel" poster. "It's all wonderfully
flattering," she said.
HAWKE ONSTAGE: "The
Late Henry Moss" opened in New York Wednesday without Sean
Penn, Nick Nolte and the rest of the star-studded cast that sold
out the San Francisco run. The new production of Sam Shepard's
dysfunctional-family drama does boast one box-office draw: Ethan
Hawke, returning to the New York stage after eight years. Hawke
started in the theater but got diverted in Hollywood. Every time
I've talked to this most genial actor, he's mentioned how much
he misses the stage. The "Henry Moss" offer came at
the right time. With his wife, Uma Thurman, pregnant with their
second child, Hawke wants to stick close to their lower
SWINTON CLONED: San
Francisco director Lynn Hershman, who needs $300,000 or so to
put the finishing touches on her futuristic film "Teknolust,"
is suddenly getting offers from financiers she hasn't even hit
up. The reason: "Teknolust" stars Tilda Swinton, who
has snowed critics as a mother in distress in the indie summer
hit "The Deep End."
Her role -- or rather
roles -- in "Teknolust" couldn't be more different.
"I'm a computer genius called Rosetta Stone who cyber
clones herself three times. I play all three cyber roles,"
Swinton told me. The movie was shot last year in a South of
Market studio and on the streets of San Francisco. "If
anybody saw a very strange-looking woman in a little green
electric cart, that was probably me." With an infusion of
new money, "Teknolust" should be ready in time to
apply for the Sundance Film Festival.
Speaking of Sundance,
the deadline for submitting features and documentaries has been
pushed up to Sept. 28. The 10-day festival starts Jan. 10, a
week earlier than usual, to make room for the Winter Olympics in
KAEL'S IMPACT: Before
going to "Funny Girl" at the Castro on Sunday, I
checked my well-worn copy of "5001 Nights at the
Movies" to see what Pauline Kael had to say about it. As
usual, she was spot on, raving about Barbra Streisand but
describing Omar Sharif as "phlegmatic." On my way
home, I learned that Kael had died.
At our house, she's the
only critical voice that counts when it comes to older movies.
In the late '70s, a certain middlebrow director went on a rant
about Kael while speaking at the San Francisco International
Film Festival. Someone in the audience yelled out, "Her
reviews will outlive your movies." That's already happened.
contributed to this report. E-mail Ruthe Stein at firstname.lastname@example.org.