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Victorians Vibrate With ‘Hysteria’; Las Vegas ‘Murder Lounge’

Maggie Gyllenhaal, left, and Judy Cairo on the set of the movie
Maggie Gyllenhaal, left, and Judy Cairo on the set of the movie "Crazy Heart." Cairo is developing a new film, ``Hysteria,'' that will examine the sexual mores of the Victorian era. Photographer: Lorey Sebastian/Chasen & Company via Bloomberg

May 4 (Bloomberg) -- Sarah Ruhl wrote a Broadway play about Victorian vibrators. Now the same buzz will be heard in a Hollywood movie.

“Hysteria,” a satire about late 19th-century sexual mores, will include one of the strange remedies prescribed back then for emotionally distraught women: massage with an electronic vibrator.

“It’s a romantic comedy in the vein of ‘Shakespeare in Love,’ with a little bit of ‘The Full Monty’ thrown in,” said producer Judy Cairo, whose “Crazy Heart” won an Oscar for star Jeff Bridges.

Husband-and-wife Stephen Dyer and Jonah Lisa Dyer sent Cairo the script for “Hysteria” following the success of “Crazy Heart.” Filming is scheduled to begin this summer, with a cast including Rupert Everett and Jonathan Pryce.

With major studios focusing on potential blockbusters, Cairo said, her Informant Media can concentrate on smaller movies with budgets ranging from $6 million to $12 million.

“We think there’s an opportunity for people like us who are interested in making movies for adults,” Cairo said in a phone interview.

“Crazy Heart,” featuring Bridges as an aging country music singer, cost $7 million and generated $43.6 million in worldwide ticket sales, according to Box Office Mojo. The DVD will be released April 20.

‘Cops’ Creator

“Cops” co-creator John Langley is developing a reality series about accused killers and their attorneys.

“The Murder Lounge” will follow cases through criminal courts in Las Vegas, Langley said in an interview. As with “Cops,” there will be no narrator or script.

“It’s looking at the justice system after ‘Cops,’” Langley said. “I’m fascinated with the law enforcement arena, crime and punishment.”

“Cops,” which follows police officers on patrol, has aired on News Corp.’s Fox since 1989.

Other shows developed through his Langley Productions include “Jail” and “Street Patrol.” He also has produced or distributed several feature films, including the recent police drama “Brooklyn’s Finest” with Richard Gere and “Wild Side,” a thriller starring Christopher Walken.

3-D Gold Rush

No wonder Hollywood is rushing to release more 3-D movies.

Boosted by “Avatar” and “Alice in Wonderland,” 3-D screenings have accounted for $851 million, or 25 percent, of all theatrical movie revenue this year in North America, according to Hollywood.com.

“Avatar,” the top-grossing movie in history, leads the way with $403 million from 3-D showings. “Alice in Wonderland” was next with $243 million from 3-D sales.

The figures don’t include revenue from 2-D screenings of the films. Most theaters still aren’t equipped to show 3-D movies, so they’re also shown in the traditional format.

Nineteen 3-D movies are scheduled to be released this year, five more than last year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Michael White in Los Angeles at mwhite8@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Manuela Hoelterhoff at mhoelterhoff@bloomberg.net.

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