You knew it had to happen: Mark Cuban has gone Hollywood. The Mavericks' owner has partnered with fellow Internet tycoon Todd Wagner to form a movie production company called 2929 Productions. Their first project, a quirky documentary called Searching for Debra Winger, was directed by actress Rosanna Arquette and recently premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. "Rosanna interviewed actresses talking about the challenges they face from Hollywood as they age," says Cuban, "not only from trying to find roles in an industry where youth rules, but also in balancing family, friends and careers." Appearing in the film are stars such as Meg Ryan, Holly Hunter, Frances McDormand and Daryl Hannah. The final interview is with Winger, who dropped out of the industry for several years after getting fed up with Hollywood. "I spent some time with Rosanna while she was filming it, and I'm proud of what she's been able to accomplish," says Cuban, who notes that despite his executive producer credit on the film, he is a silent partner in 2929. Hard to imagine Cuban as a silent anything, isn't it?
?As any Yankees fan might tell you, never let a Red Sox supporter open his mouth for too long—he usually sticks his foot in it. Just ask Ben Affleck. The actor was in Toronto last week to promote his new film, The Sum of All Fears, when he was invited to sit in the Fox booth with broadcasters Sean McDonough and Jerry Remy during the Blue Jays-Red Sox game. Affleck, a die-hard Sox fan, took over the mike and did some shaky play-by-play for nearly six innings. Along the way he criticized outfielder Trot Nixon's inability to hit lefthanders and also dissed Boston infielder Lou Merloni for saying earlier in the season that the team had "made a mockery of my career" by repeatedly sending him to the minors. "He absolutely sucks," said Nixon afterward. " Matt Damon made you what you are, slick." Added Merloni, "A mockery is his last four movies." After hearing of the reactions, Affleck went on McDonough's radio show later in the week and apologized profusely, saying he'd been a "jerk-off." None of the Red Sox disagreed.
?Last week ABC gave the go-ahead to a pilot based on the 1997 book Letters from a Nut, written by Ted L. Nancy. Tire book consists of wacky notes sent by Nancy to various businesses, which then sent back unintentionally hilarious responses. Sports letters are prominent, including the one Nancy sent the Lakers asking if it would be O.K. to attend a game wearing pants with a see-through bottom for medical reasons. "The only time you will see my cellophane exposed buttocks will be during the time I enter and exit the arena and during behind the back passes and 3 point buzzer shots," writes Nancy. (The Lakers' response: "If you have medical documentation, we will be glad to provide an attendant to escort you to your seat and explain your situation to the nearest usher") Or the one Nancy sent to boxing promoter Bob Arum demanding Arum stop a fight between Larry Holmes and Max Schmeling. (" Max Schmeling has to be 85 years old. Has everyone gone insane?!") By the way, Ted L. Nancy is a pseudonym. Though it's never been confirmed, the writer is widely believed to be Jerry Seinfeld.