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Monday Is Bright New Day for 'Hughleys'

October 09, 2000

"TGIM," or "Thank God It's Monday," could be the new motto for D.L. Hughley and the producers of his situation comedy, "The Hughleys." No, the comedian and others associated with the show haven't gotten their days mixed up. But they are pleased with the new direction of "The Hughleys" in its new home: Mondays at 9 p.m. on UPN, where it landed after ABC let the series go after two seasons. The comedy, which centers on a successful black businessman who moves his family to the largely white suburbs, has gotten edgier and more adult, a distinct change from last season when it was scheduled during ABC's kid-friendly "TGIF' lineup. "We didn't quite fit there," said Kim Friese, one of the sitcom's executive producers. "We were forced to be a family show. Now we're a funny show that happens to be about a family. We have episodes about real adult issues. We don't have to end our stories with a music hook and a hug." The change should also appeal to viewers who enjoyed Hughley's R-rated riffs in the recent film "The Original Kings of Comedy." A prime example of the show's newfound irreverence airs tonight: One of Hughley's white employees sues him for racial discrimination. Attorney Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. appears in the episode as the employee's lawyer, and is the subject of more than a few barbs at his reputation. Another episode airing before Election Day deals with Hughley's disillusionment over the presidential race and his fear that he might be turning into a Republican.

For the Record
Los Angeles Times Tuesday October 10, 2000 Home Edition Calendar Part F Page 2 Entertainment Desk 1 inches; 15 words Type of Material: Correction
Director's name--Director Jan de Bont's name was misspelled in an In the Know article in Monday's Calendar.

Kaminski Steps Out From Behind the Camera

Janusz Kaminski, who won Oscars for his riveting black-and-white cinematography in Steven Spielberg's 1993 film, "Schindler's List," and for Spielberg's 1998 World War II drama, "Saving Private Ryan," makes his directorial debut this week with a supernatural thriller called "Lost Souls." The film, which New Line Cinema will release (appropriately) on Friday the 13th, stars Winona Ryder as a religious woman who tries to convince a best-selling crime author that he is destined to become the vessel through which Satan returns to Earth. At some time in their lives, nearly every great cinematographer comes to believe that he can direct a movie. Some do it splendidly. Most fall far short of mark. Even Barry Sonnenfeld and Jan du Bont, who found fame as directors, have had mixed results. Sonnenfeld, who was cinematographer on "When Harry Met Sally . . . " and "Raising Arizona," found great success when he directed "Men in Black," but last year he stumbled badly with his critically panned western, "Wild Wild West." Du Bont, the cinematographer on "Flatliners" and "Black Rain," went on to direct two blockbusters--"Twister" and "Speed"--only to follow with the box-office bombs "Speed 2: Cruise Control" and "The Haunting." Other famous cinematographers who have attempted the transition with varying degrees of success include James Wong Howe ("Go, Man, Go!"), Jack Cardiff ("Sons and Lovers"), William A. Fraker ("Monte Walsh"), Haskell Wexler ("Medium Cool") and Freddie Francis ("They Came From Beyond Space"). As befitting a career behind the lens, the Polish-born Kaminski chose to give "Lost Souls" a dramatic look. The film was shot with a dark tone, heightening the tension and making the viewer feel nervous. For his own cinematographer, Kaminski called upon his longtime colleague, Mauro Fiore, who has worked on six films with Kaminski, including serving as second-unit director of photography on "Amistad" and "The Lost World." But how movies look is only part of the equation that goes into making a good film. One early Internet review of "Lost Souls" sums up the film this way: "An Apocalypse movie so bad it makes 'End of Days' look good." Ah, well.

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