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Call him Bland, James Bland

They’re calling him Bland — James Bland.
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They’re calling him Bland — James Bland.         

Last week, actor was named to replace Pierce Brosnan as Agent 007. Among the other actors eyed during the lengthy search, the producers reportedly found Hugh Jackman “too fey,” Colin Farrell “too sleazy,” Eric Bana “not handsome enough,” and 5’10” Ewan McGregor “too short,” according to an alleged memo picked up in the overseas press. But plenty of fans of the series are finding the “Layer Cake” star too unBond-like.

Craig — perhaps better known for dating Kate Moss and being briefly implicated in the breakup between Jude Law and Sienna Miller than for any of his movie roles — was introduced to the press last week when he was brought to a press conference on board a speedboat. But the daredevil quality of the stunt was completely undone when Craig appeared wearing a life jacket. Craig compounded the problem when he commented that the ride had scared “the [bleep] out of me.”

Craig’s often-stiff answers to reporters’ questions also did not impress. “Why do you want to play Bond?” the gum-chewing Craig was asked. “Why not?” he replied. “What are the reasons for Bond’s enduring popularity?” came a question. Craig replied: “I don’t know the answer to that.”

The London Mirror called the event “embarrassing.” Complained one Brit TV commentator: “He looks more like a banker than James Bond.” Some fans are even less enthused. “Daniel Craig will NOT be my James Bond,” lamented a poster at on a thread devoted to Craig-bashing. “I really want this to be a bad dream.”    

If you can’t say anything nicePaul McCartney is responding to some unkind comments made by Yoko Ono.  John Lennon’s widow — who some Beatles fans blame for breaking up the famed band — recently stunned observers when she compared her late husband’s songwriting to McCartney’s, saying she had told her late husband that other singers cover McCartney’s tunes more than Lennon’s because “You’re a good songwriter, it’s not June-with-spoon that you write.”

McCartney, when asked about the comments, had some tough words for Ono. “She’s John’s wife so I have to respect her for that, but I don’t have to do any further,” he said. “I don’t think she’s the brightest of buttons. I don’t want to get in a bun fight but she’s said some particularly daft things in her time.”

McCartney commented that he didn’t want to say anything negative about her, but didn’t seem to succeed: “Yoko is something else. Her life is dedicated to putting me down, that’s what she seems to do all the time,” he said. “But she will notice that I attempt very strongly not to put her down, I have respect for her as my former comrade’s wife.”

Notes from all overMariah Carey isn’t shy about her skills. “Ambition is a talent in its own right,” the singer told You magazine. “I had the gift of music, but it was ambition that enabled me to translate that into my career.”  . . .  Sir Ian McKellen is trying to lose weight for his role in “The DaVinci Code.” The actor put on a bit of a gut for his cameo as a con man in “Coronation Street.” . . . When asked why he didn’t go into television news like his father, TV newcaster Nick Clooney, George Clooney quipped, “I lacked only talent.” But, added Clooney — who directed “Good Night and Good Luck,” the new biopic about famed newsman Edward R. Murrow — “I had the hair for it.”

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