James Cameron’s Avatar Follow-up Will Star Tom Arnold, Claims Tom Arnold

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Surely there can be no clearer sign that you're in summer's cultural dog days than opening the Times on a Sunday morning and finding a front-page, above-the-fold "Arts & Leisure" profile on Tom Arnold. What has Arnold done lately to warrant such placement? Not much! He just signed a development deal with NBC, though that was announced this morning, so it's not mentioned. The peg seems to be loosely pegged to Arnold's dubious return to stand-up ("Tom doesn't really put together a routine," explains his assistant in the story, "he just sort of says the last conversation he had before he got onstage") and his recent, similarly pegless appearances on late-night shows. Even so, the last paragraph of the article certainly caught our attention.

Still, the future project Mr. Arnold said he's most excited about is a movie with a still-to-be-determined plot and script. "All I know is, Jim Cameron's making it and Arnold" — Mr. Schwarzenegger — "and I are going to be in it, and it starts shooting in fourteen months, the day after Arnold stops being governor of California," he said. "It's not going to be called True Lies II, but it might as well be. I can live with that."

Can it possibly be true? Would either Cameron or Schwarzenegger commit to, or even entertain the thought of, making a film with a "still-to-be-determined plot and script" co-starring Tom Arnold? Doubtful! But, hey, as we said, it's the dog days of summer, and like the New York Times, we had to write about something.

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