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METHOD ACTING: Weeds star Mary-Louise Parker seems to think her role as a suburban mom pot dealer in the Showtime cult hit (on Showcase here) is starting to creep into her real life. She told the New York Daily News that “a man pulled up in a car next to me the other day and asked if he could buy a bag of weed.” All she had, she said, was some Graham crackers for her son, strapped into a car seat in the back.
“Maybe he could roll up the graham crackers and smoke them," Parker joked to the News. It seems to me that it was probably the anonymous, smoke-seeking guy who got the joke, not Parker – even if you factor in the more exclusive audience that Weeds pulls on cable channels like Showtime, it would be a pretty dim light who couldn’t tell the difference between an actor and their role, and it’s sort of a shame that Parker thinks so little of her audience.
Who, after all, doesn’t like to break the ice with a randomly-encountered TV or movie star by goofing on one of their big roles? Like the time I met Anthony Hopkins and started shouting “Ooh – Hannibal the cannibal! Are you gonna eat me, Hannibal? I have some fava beans and a nice Chianti here, Hannibal!” I’m sure the pained look he had on his face was his way of agreeing that some roles, no matter the positive effect they have on your career, are terribly limiting. I’m sure of it.
Then there was the time I ran into Tom Cruise in the men’s room at a steakhouse and turned to him, very respectfully, and said “You're everyone's problem. That's because every time you go up in the air, you're unsafe. I don't like you because you're dangerous.” I’m sure he laughed, and we probably would have had a nice chat about the way that people project their fantasies on stars, making them a sort of sexual palimpsest, if one of his bodyguards hadn’t tasered me and dragged me into the parking lot. I mean, it’s not like I said something like “You can be my wingman, anytime!” I mean, that would have been just ridiculous.
STUCK IN IDOL: Speaking of pot, one of the contestants who was given their gold ticket to Hollywood in Tuesday night’s San Antonio audition episode of American Idol has been uninvited, thanks to a misdemeanor arrest for marijuana possession, according to a TMZ.com story. Akron Watson and his cousin both tried out, but Watson got the nod for his version of Sam Cooke’s A Change Is Gonna Come; he was considered “one of the feel-good stories of the new season,” according to the story, as both he and his cousin were unemployed and living with Watson’s mom.
Idol’s lawyers and researchers are working overtime right now weeding out potential embarrassments that could crop up later in the show’s season, and a few more contestants might get a ticket home in the next few weeks for apparently being unaware that it’s only OK to do stupid, dangerous and illegal things when you’re already famous.