Sharing Steve :: New Stuff
Thursday, April 28, 2005

Steve speaks about the Pink Panther

The Daily News of Los Angeles
April 24, 2005 Sunday
Pg. U9
Glenn Whipp

Steve Martin has been down this road before, and the fact that he's taking the same stroll again doesn't mean he's any more certain that it's going to work.

"You don't approach something like this without some trepidation," Martin says.

Martin is talking about playing the beloved bumbler Inspector Clouseau in a remake of "The Pink Panther." It's not the first time someone has tried to fill Peter Sellers' shoes (Ted Wass tried in "Curse of the Pink Panther" in 1983, and Roberto Benigni failed miserably a decade later in 'Son of the Pink Panther"), and Martin says it probably won't be the last.

'It's one of those characters that will probably be revisited 25 years from now," Martin says. "A classic."

Martin has tried remakes before with mixed success. A 1996 big-screen version of "Sgt. Bilko" bombed, but subbing for Spencer Tracy produced two "Father of the Bride" movies. Martin is also in preproduction for another "Cheaper by the Dozen" movie.

The now-departed MGM tried for years to revive the "Panther" franchise, first offering the part to Mike Myers, then to Chris Tucker with Martin finally signing after turning down the part a couple of times. "The Pink Panther" will be the 10th entry in the series, and Martin says it will have all the elements people have come to expect: pratfalls, bad accents, beautiful women (Beyonce Knowles plays the love interest) and, of course, Henry Mancini's classic theme set to an animated title sequence.

"You hear that music and you're immediately in a good place," Martin says. "It is pure happiness."


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