the early-evening news

Denzel Washington Makes Jack Nicholson Look Weak

Denzel Washington says cheese.Photo: Getty Images

Damn It Feels Good to Be a Gangsta: We’re giddy with anticipation for American Gangster, the three-hour cop-gangster drama starring Russell Crowe and Denzel Washington (give us Denzel playing a smooth bad guy and a trailer that kicks some Jay-Z, and we’re putty). If the early-early reviews are any indication, it sounds like we won’t be disappointed — supposedly Gangster is better than The Departed. Uh, whoa. It’s based on a true story, so depending on how you think about those things, spoiler ahead! [Ain’t It Cool News]

Say It Isn’t So: Some lucky D.J. got his hands on Madonna’s new single — you know, the surefire hit produced by Pharrell Williams, which leaked onto the Internet last week — but when he played it, the audience reaction was “tepid at best.” According to the New York Post’s anonymous source, the song sounds like old Britney Spears. They’d have been able to verify this themselves if only they’d been reading Vulture last Wednesday. [NYP]

Diddy Pulls a Fast One on Us: For the finale of his ego-driven reality show Making the Band 4, Diddy staged the dramatic conclusion in Times Square. And get this: The fourth guy who was going to be in the band? Not going to be in the band at all! He’s getting a solo deal! And as for the real fourth member in the band? Diddy decided to have FIVE members! Whoa! Seriously, though, what’s the point of having a competition if you’re going to completely change the objective at the end? [EW]

Quote Machine Bonus: Even Rob Zombie gets the chills sometimes. On why he cast ginormous actor Tyler Mane as the lead in the forthcoming remake of Halloween: “You know, people always say that to me — ‘don’t you think a normal-sized guy is more frightening? And I go ‘Fuck no.’ If a normal-sized guy comes at me, I’m not worried. If a guy like Tyler comes at me, I’m fuckin’ worried.” [Cinematical]

From the Department of Celebrity Hospitalization: Didja hear the one about Owen Wilson? Yeah, thought so. [Defamer]

Denzel Washington Makes Jack Nicholson Look Weak