What would J. Edgar think of the team behind Warner Bros.’ “J. Edgar”?

How about “rat,” “jackal” and “lice covered ferret.” That’s what the then-FBI director called Los Angeles Times reporter Jack Nelson in 1971, obsessed that Nelson was going to write that he was a homosexual, according to the Times. But Nelson denied any such thing, although he was a thorn in the side of the bureau director and wrote a series of highly critical articles about FBI tactics and Hoover’s expensive tastes.

“J. Edgar” suggests a gay relationship between Hoover and his longtime aide Clyde Tolson, based on books that have been written since the FBI director’s death in 1972. FBI agents have questioned the accounts, and Hoover even told the Times back then that should Nelson write any story suggesting he was gay, he threatened to sue for criminal libel.

The Times story is probably publicity gold for Warner Bros., as any studio craves attention for major releases that go beyond the entertainment media.

Reiner’s Case: Rob Reiner says that he’s developing a movie based on Proposition 8, California’s ban on same-sex marriage. Reiner was the driving force behind the effort challenging the constitutionality of the measure in federal court. (The Hollywood Reporter).

Back in Action: Something was missing from the media firestorm that has surrounded Herman Cain over sexual harassment allegations. That was a Gloria Allred press conference. That reportedly will change today. Update: The press conference will be at New York’s Friars Club.

Protest Politics: Opponents of TransCanada’s proposed Keystone XL pipeline, including Mark Ruffalo, circled the White House on Sunday to urge President Obama to reject the project. (Bloomberg).

Big Preview:  “Knife Fight” debuted its trailer to buyers at the American Film Market in Santa Monica over the weekend. The pic is directed by Bill Guttentag, who wrote the script with political consultant Chris Lehane. The project is about a political operative at the center of campaign crises. (Politico).