Short Cuts

Ron Howard helms The Alamo no mo'.

Ron Howard's Ala-Non Problem Dept.: Disney/Imagine's much-ballyhooed reworking of The Alamo will soon be under new management. Last Sunday's Daily Variety reported that director Ron Howard is exiting the production due to lengthy production delays and a desire to strike while his A Beautiful Mind Oscar-laden iron is still glowing. Pre-production is reported to be moving at roughly the speed of dirt, with various production design teams working in and around the Dripping Springs area to ensure that everything from the plant life to the Alamo itself will be able to pass muster. Originally slated to begin shooting this coming September, then bumped to a winter shoot, the film is still very much a go, with co-star and Howard's Oscar buddy Russell Crowe expected to stay with the project (if only to be closer to his beloved Austin) and other signed and not-yet-signed actors such as Ethan Hawke, Billy Bob Thornton, and Sean Penn still, presumably, on board... The Austin Film Society is regionally premiering not one but two major films at the Paramount Theatre (703 Congress) this coming month, both of which will be benefits for the Texas Filmmakers' Production Fund and great gobs of fun to boot. First up is Steven Soderbergh's digital production Full Frontal, Monday, July 29, 7:30pm, with a post-premiere party at Antone's following the film and a Q&A with actor Nicky Katt, producer Scott Kramer, and possibly actor David Hyde Pierce. Tickets go on sale through Star Tickets (469-SHOW) and the Paramount box office Monday, July 15 (various prices). And then there's Robert Rodriguez's eagerly anticipated Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams, which will premiere Sunday, Aug. 4, 5pm, also at the Paramount. Rodriguez, producer/wife Elizabeth Avellan, and cast members Alexa Vega, Daryl Sabara, Danny Trejo, Matt O'Leary, Emily Osment, and Bill Paxton will be in attendance, and, notably, the High-Definition production will be projected digitally, finally giving us all a chance to see what Rodriguez has been so excited about of late (see for more on Rodriguez's love affair with HD). A reception at the Stephen F. Austin Hotel, a street carnival in front of the Paramount, and much more will be available to premium ticket holders. The screening is a co-benefit for the TFPF and UT's M.D. Anderson Cancer Center's pediatrics programs, and information including ticket prices and availability (beginning July 15) are available online at So long, Mr. Frankenheimer.

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The Alamo, Ron Howard, Steven Soderbergh, Full Frontal, Spy Kids2: The Island of Lost Dreams, Elizabeth Avellan, Alexa Vega, Daryl Sabara, Danny Trejo, Matt O'Leary, Emily Osment, Bill Paxton, Austin Film Society, Texas Filmmakers' Production Fund, John Frankenheimer, R

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