Wednesday, September 10, 2008

THESE OLD BROADS

The other day I was taking a siesta with the television on, and I heard the most interesting thing (if not the most, then certainly right up there). It was something I'd thought about and talked about in the past during my waking hours. At first, I figured it was a character in my dream (of which I have no recollection), but then I realized that it was someone on The O.C. (probably Seth Cohen). He was talking about how someone should make a movie version of The Golden Girls but with a not-so-slight twist: The ladies would be "young and hot" (his words!), not middle-aged as they were on the sitcom.

I agree and disagree. Golden Girls: The Movie is long overdue. But why go digging up their pasts (weren't the flashbacks among the most boring scenes on the show?) when their senior years are so ripe for comedy? Furthermore, a large part of the appeal of the original show was having these elderly women all under one roof. We figure that if it could happen for them, maybe when we get to be that age, if we are unattached, we, too, will have healthy sex lives and a full house to call home.

So the movie should be in the here and now. But who will star as Dorothy and our three merry widows? Here's my dream cast:

Glenn Close as Dorothy Zbornak: Is there any actress of a certain age who suffers fools less gladly onscreen? Consider her heyday roles: Fatal Attraction, Dangerous Liaisons, Reversal of Fortune, 101 Dalmatians. The other day, I caught part of an episode of her F/X series Damages and realized that the withering glance (see Beatrice Arthur's Dorothy in the original Golden Girls photo above) is alive and well: Glenn's got looks that kill. Second choice: The Queen herself, Dame Helen Mirren. Third: Angelica Huston


Meryl Streep as Rose Nylund: She may not have been the standout comedian of the bunch, but Betty White was certainly the best actress. So who better to cover for her? One might imagine Meryl in the role of Blanche Devereaux, but that's a little too obvious. (She Devil. Death Becomes Her. Been there, done that.) And I'd much rather see her put her Meryl spin on a St. Olaf story than massacre the ABBA songbook. Second choice: Diane Keaton

Michelle Pfeiffer as Blanche Devereaux: She's Hollywood's hottest (as in va-va-voom!) actress over 50. Blanche thinks she's the cat's meow, so why not cast an actress who actually is? Oh, wait. She played Catwoman, too! (Apologies to Rue McLanahan, but the idea of her being a maneater was nearly as funny as what she actually did with the character.) Second choice: Sharon Stone

Cloris Leachman as Sophia Petrillo: Twenty years ago, she could have been Dorothy (I'm convinced that if Bea Arthur and Elaine Stritch had both turned down the role, Cloris would have been next in line), so why not invite her to play Pussycat's Ma? Come to think of it, the only other octogenarian I can think of who would have the guts to compete on Dancing With the Stars is--you guessed it!--Sophia Petrillo. Second choice: Lauren Bacall
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