David Mamet’s November now in production

Nathan Lane - NovemberDespite the ongoing stagehand strike, which hopefully may be resolved today, David Mamet’s new comedy, November, started rehearsals on Monday. It is scheduled to preview on December 20th, and open on January 17, at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre on Broadway. It stars Nathan Lane, Laurie Metcalf, Dylan Baker, Michael Nichols and Ethan Phillips.

“Set just days before a major presidential election, November involves civil marriages, gambling casinos, lesbians, American Indians, presidential libraries, questionable pardons and campaign contributions.”

Nathan plays incumbent President Charles Smith, fighting for the unlikely chance to be re-elected. This marks Nathan’s third foray into the political arena. His first was as Congressman Charlie Lawrence, in the eponymous very short-lived sitcom. In 2008 he will be seen in Kevin Costner’s upcoming movie Swing Vote. All well-timed, no doubt, to coincide with the real presidential elections in November of 2008.

Tickets are already on sale, with ebay scalpers asking $250/ticket. Photos of the first rehearsal are available here, courtesy of BroadwayWorld.com.

(Photo by David Hume Kennerly)

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SLCN TV: Broadcasting Live from Second Life

I had heard of the Second Life Cable Network inworld, but I had yet to explore it until today, when I read about it inSLCN TV Massively, the successor to SL Insider. The breadth of programming was a surprise. Everything from a Shopping Channel, Business channel, Lifestyle, Community channels and including a Sports channel, featuring ice hockey, sailing and snail races…I tuned in to the last laps of this race. A real nail bitter…

Also in the mix is the Music Channel. SL has always been a great venue for artists to reach new audiences by streaming live concerts into SL. The SLCN has a few of those shows archived and available as podcasts.

The nicest thing about all of this is, though you can stream these shows inworld, through special tv sets, you can also stream them on the web via Quicktime. The SLCN has been in operations for a while now. Wow, is all I can think at this point…

CNN iReport – now live in SL

CNN iReport meeting in SLLooks like I missed the official launch of the CNN iReport feature in SL. I got an email today, timed 1:46 pm, saying…

Hi all,
Hope you can join Tyson Ireport & Team for this week’s news chat. On the agenda so far: framing your shot with the rule of thirds, and the best of this week’s SL iReports. Hope to see you at the CNN amphiteatre at 2 p.m. SLT!

Thanks for the headsup!… This was the first email I’ve received from this group since I joined it almost two weeks ago. A look at the CNN link provided shows that the iReport feature was launched on November 14th. Weekly meetings will be at the inworld CNN amphitheatre at 5 pm (EST), 2 pm (SL time).

Want to keep up-to-date on what’s being reported? Subscribe to the CNN Second Life RSS feed at: http://rss.cnn.com/rss/cnn_slireports

Furry Love – CSI & SL Style

NY Murder by ZuikerWell, there were no references to SL in last week’s episode of CSI:NY. But on the next day, Anthony Zuiker posted the best 10 submissions to NY Murder by Zuikerthe “Mystery by Zuiker” to the CSI:NY website. I did figure out the mystery but had trouble posting to the message board. Turned out I was using the wrong password. Nonetheless, it’s been interesting reading everyone’s submissions. There’s supposed to be a new Mystery by Zuiker coming down as well. There’s one advertised for the 8th of December. Looking forward to that.

Meanwhile, a new case was also available when I logged on tonight: Furry Love. Didn’t take long to figure thatNY Furry Love one now that I know what’s expected and the procedure to follow. This one took us into the world of “furries”, or avatars that are in the shape of animals. Very important community on SL. There was a CSI (Las Vegas) episode (Fur and Loathing) that looked into this culture. I met a local SLer a couple of years ago who told me there were such furry conventions happening and it’s pretty serious business. Hey…whatever grabs ya…

There have been more sightings of Venus inworld. I’ll have to check on that. Also, seems like there will be a dance party happening every Thursday night at 10 PM (EST), 7 PM (SL time) for fans inworld. Will definitely check that out too this week.

Signing off,

Maxie Mostel
NY Dectective Rank

CSI:NY in SL – First case solved!

NY in Second LifeI finally took the time to figure out the CSI:NY environment and game launched in Second Life at the end of October. I had ventured a few times late at night but had lost patience as I tried to figure out the best way to navigate, as my own pre-existing avatar (Maxie Mostel) or another one created just for the game. I finally opted to go in as my SL alter ego. It allowed me, among other things, to buy neat CSI:NY t-shirts using my current Linden funds. 🙂

After listening to the intro and getting my CSI:NY Rookie badge, I was off to solve my first case, titled High Flying. Picking up the evidence was easy enough. You click the object and get a recorded audio describing the details of each piece. Once all evidence is collected and saved to your toolbar, you’re directed to teleport to the Crime Scene Lab to analyze the evidence. Unfortunately, I originally teleported to the wrong lab (the one reserved for the Venus crime – the gal that got this whole game started). Thanks to a kind fellow avatar (Luisa), I was pointed into the right direction. Once all the evidence was analyzed, by clicking on the various stations and receiving more audio descriptions, a suspects list got added to the toolbar. I was told to go and interview one of the suspects, Davis, co-owner of the Pegasus Club, location of the crime, while the other two suspects were interviewed by two other CSI officers. Those interviews were then video streamed (each video preceded by the Cisco theme) through the toolbar. Pretty slick, despite the lag. Luckily there’s a text option to that, which types out the text spoken. The final step is then to return to the 2nd floor of the Crime lab and identify the culprit. The case was not too difficult to solve and I’m now a Rank 5 detective..Ahem… 🙂

Next up will be the Zuiker Crime mystery. I’ve read the details of this gruesome murder (Face – $5,000/lb), involving a deli, a meat slicer and said face. This one has a web component, which took forever to load tonight, so I’ll try again tomorrow. Participants of the Zuiker mystery are then encouraged to log onto CBS and describe, in 500 words and less, how they think this murder went down. The top posts will be involved somehow in the CSI:NY episode tomorrow. I don’t know exactly how that will happen, whether during the show, as part of the show or after the show. I’ll check it out tomorrow.

Now that I’ve gotten over the learning part and getting a feel for it, this is turning to be a lot of fun. Considering I don’t consider myself much of a gamer, I’m really getting into this. Well done CSI:NY! Click here for slideshow of inworld pics.

Beowulf Scribes in SL

Neil Gaiman and Roger Avary, scribesScreenwriters Neil Gaiman & Roger Avary dropped into SL this morning to discuss their upcoming film, Beowulf. The interview was conducted by Pica Paperdoll of the Electric Sheep Company, the folks behind the OnRez viewer and the CSI:NY Virtual game in SL. I attended the Q&A at The Shelter, one of my favorite spots in SL. The interview was streamed via Quicktime from Beowulf Island. I took a quick gander to the island after the interview and marvelled at the dishes laid out. 🙂 Click here for slideshow.

Beowulf Island Orientation PathHere’s another nice example of the integration of marketing and SL. Newcomers to Beowulf Island are greeted by an orientation path and led into the castle. I didn’t explore any further, but the castle seemed like a nice location for fans of the genre to mingle. It’ll be interesting to see if any other features are released in conjunction with the opening of the movie, November 16. I didn’t really listen to the interview — my sound card isn’t the greatest inworld. But SL is featured on the official Beowulf movie site, though more details are not available there. Stay tuned. 🙂