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INTO THE NIGHT / RSVP

It Was Certainly a Jungle Out There

November 10, 1995|BILL HIGGINS | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

The Scene: Wednesday's premiere of Warner Bros. and Morgan Creek's "Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls" at Westwood's Village and Bruin theaters. It was quite the glamour spectacular. The intersection of Broxton and Weyburn avenues was barricaded, the moon and klieg lights made the scene daytime-bright, bleachers were erected for screaming fans, KROQ DJs introduced arriving celebrities, and 35 film crews covered the event. (E! broadcast it live.) "Do not worship me!" were star Jim Carrey's words to the cheering crowd. He was right. It wasn't a religious moment. It was more Caesar-enters-Rome.

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Who Was There: Carrey, director Steve Oedekerk, producer James Robinson, executive producer Gary Barber, plus 2,300 guests including Roseanne, Stephen Baldwin, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Marlee Matlin, Kevin Pollak, Pauly Shore, Amy Yasbeck, John Lithgow, Elizabeth Berkley, Cary Elwes and studio execs Bob Daly, Terry Semel and Rob Friedman.

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The Buzz: That this is the 800-pound gorilla entering the movie marketplace. There are few things in life more certain than that "Get Shorty" will not be No. 1 at the box office next week.

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The Venue: The after-party was at the Century Club. To create a Kenyan ambience in sync with the film's locale, the rooms overflowed with exotic plants, a 12-piece African-style band entertained, and a "Wild Kingdom"-genre documentary played on monitors. It was similar to the party for "Congo," but in this case the gorilla was the movie itself.

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Subject of Discussion: How, despite themselves, crowds laugh at juvenile comedy. One guest summed it up this way: "Chanel and potty humor--the classics endure."

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Quoted: "I always thought that if you leap into the abyss, you either stay in the abyss or you do something really interesting," said Carrey. "And that's kind of what we did with the first 'Ace.' There was the moment when I got sick of playing it safe and I just went for it."

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Fashion Trend: Rastafarian Armani. A gray suit, dreadlocks and tennis shoes--this could be the hip, multicultural executive look for the millennium.

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Observed: Jean-Claude Van Damme, dressed completely in black from his "Sudden Death" baseball cap to his knee-length leather coat and lizard skin cowboy boots, using the plastic Arrowhead water bottle he carried to bean a weird British TV reporter who asked him an obscene question.

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