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Arts and Entertainment

Best Reality Concept Ever? + Random TV & Movie News

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The premise of CBS' upcoming Kid Nation may be the BEST idea for a reality show I have ever heard in my entire life: a group of 8 to 15-year-olds are plunked in a remote locale and forced to create their own society. Awesome! So awesome that William Golding's estate ought to sue for residuals, right?

Too bad spineless CBS execs already f*ed up the show by allowing kids to leave when they want and ending every episode with a feel-good moment. What?! Reality shows are all about the schadenfreude of watching a bunch of saps fight tooth and nail for every scrap of pseudo-stardom. I don't care if they're dealing with kids, this warm and fuzzy model of reality TV is bullshit. Haven't those silly execs read Lord of the Flies or seen Battle Royale? Here's how Kid Nation should work.

First, you stage some kind of accident and drop the kids on an island far, far away from civilization. Then you make them eke out a hardscrabble existence through subsistence farming. Then you undermine their attempts to create a participatory democracy by turning the show into a brutal game of manipulation and one-upmanship. You know, kind of like the real world. That would be edgy and entertaining. -Monsters & Critics

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Modest Mouse Music Video Contest: Modest Mouse & mtvU are sponsoring a contest that gives fans the opportunity to create original animation as a backdrop for the music video of "We've Got Everything," from the band's latest album. The contest will be judged by members of the band, including former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, and the winner will receive a high-definition digital video camera. The deadline has been extended until TOMORROW, Tuesday, May 22. -Spin

Goldie Hawn will not only star in but will also step behind the lens to direct her first film, the comedy Ashes to Ashes about a woman who travels through India to bury her husband's ashes but loses them along the way. Kurt Russell will co-star. No word if there's a bit part for daddy-snorter Keith Richards. -Variety

Julia Roberts will star in a movie about wildlife conservationist Joan Root, who was murdered in her Kenyan home earlier this year. -Variety

Richard Gere will star in Hachiko: A Dog's Story, a remake of the 1987 Japanese film Hachiko monogatari, a drama about a college professor who forms a special bond with an abandoned dog. Insert your own joke about Richard Gere and small, furry animals. I won't do it for you. -Variety

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