H'wood references cast spell on 'Bewitched' update
Would Samantha have wiggled her nose for a blended from the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf?Probably not, but that doesn’t matter in Sony’s feature remake of “Bewitched,” which is more intent on referencing insider Hollywood culture than on re-creating the classic 1960’s TV show on which it’s — sort of — based. (For non-Angelenos, the Coffee Bean is the Southwest’s answer to Starbucks. In the movie it gets a prominent plug.) In the new “Bewitched,” a pompous actor in need of a hit –Will Ferrell — attempts to stage a comeback by starring in a TV remake of “Bewitched.” Cast as Samantha Stephens is an actual witch, Nicole Kidman. (Pirandello probably should have gotten a co-producer credit.) Beyond Kidman’s jones for the Coffee Bean, the pic’s loaded with other Hollywood winks. Much of the movie takes place on the lot of Culver Studios (couldn’t be Sony could it?), populated by heartless TV execs, one of whom is played by “The Daily Show’s” Stephen Colbert. E! also gets some screen time on one of Ferrell’s many plasma TVs. And at one point, Ferrell’s character is interviewed by James Lipton, as his obsequious self. Anyone recall Ferrell’s Lipton parodies on “Saturday Night Live?” And in a café scene, Jennifer Hall, a struggling actress on HBO’s “Unscripted,” makes a cameo as a waitress. In the old “Bewitched,” Hollywood was at a far remove from the domestic shenanigans of Samantha and Darrin. Then again, back then all it took was a nose wiggle to keep audiences captive.
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