In The Valley of C-List Actors: Bringing The Zane
Hey You alls, I dunno if any of you has been following this but there is a Turkish film called Valley Of The Wolves: Iraq that is setting all manner of box-office records in its home country. What's so interesting about that? Well, according lots of folks Valley Of The Wolves Iraq is virulent anti-American propaganda that relentlessly demonizes the U.S and its involvement in Iraq. And no, Michael Moore is not involved. Now I haven't seen the film so I can't cast judgment on it but the thing that really fascinates me about Valley Of The Wolves is that it co-stars such noted America-haters as Billy Zane and Gary Busey. Now I know what you're probably thinking right now "Gary Busey? Involved in some sort of sleazy, disreputable project? No!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!". Busey already a veteran of the Christploitation boom, a strange little sub-genre that sucks in various C-listers (Howie Mandel, Margot Kidder) with the irresistible siren song of "work" and "payment for services" and "an opportunity to stave off homelessness and hunger". But doing an ostensibly anti-American movie is a whole different ballgame altogether. I can only imagine what the conversation between Zane and his agent regarding Valley Of The Wolves must have been like. It might have gone a little something like this Agent: So I got an offer I think you might be interested in. I gotta warn you though it's not exactly ideal. Billy Zane: Whaddya mean? Are we talking nudity? Cause I'll do nudity. Hell, I want to do nudity. Agent: There's no nudity involved but here's the thing: by accepting this role you may, in some people's eyes, ambiguously, have to betray your country. Silence on the line Billy Zane: I'm still interested. Agent: Phew! That's my boy. It takes more than possible charges of treason to keep my boy Billy "Blood Rayne" Zane away from a fat paycheck. Billy Zane: Hell yeah. The Phantom's all up in this bee-yatch. I haven't even heard of most of the movies I've done post-Titanic and I'm in em! Just how fat a paycheck are we talking about here? Agent: Two million dollars. Billy Zane: Two million dollars? Holy smokes! For two million dollars I'll set an American flag on fire and rape a woman dressed as the Statue Of Liberty! Agent. Good. Cause those are two of the things your character, Rapey McMuslim-Hater does. Actually those are two of the more benign things your character does. Otherwise he's something of a bastard. So, has anybody else been following this whole brouhaha? Has anybody either seen the movie or the very popular television show it's based on? Is it in fact virulently anti-American or should we not believe the hype? And is there anything C-list actors won't do for money? Please do feel free to discuss amongst yourselves. And, you know, us A.V Clubbers too.