Eliza Dushku picks up the “Bottle”


You know how there are some actors you’ll go see even when you’re sure you’ll hate the movie? I feel that way about the entire cast of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. This may be because Buffy has never been off the air in my household. That time I was poor and had my cable shut off, it was all Buffy DVDs all the time. (This does have some limits. I only managed three episodes of Nicholas Brendon‘s Kitchen Confidential, and maybe three minutes of American Pie.)

Um, where was I? Oh yeah. Eliza Dushku.

Dushku has just signed on to play a role in Bottle Shock, a movie about a pivotal moment in the history of Californian wines: the 1976 Paris Tastings, when the upstart underdog California wineries took on the reigning French heavyweights and won the contest as well as the hearts and palates of millions. I do realize I’m speaking of wines in sports metaphors here, but, well, this is the extent of my wine knowledge. (Ask me a question about microbrews, though. I’m all over that.)

Other casting includes Alan Rickman, whom I loved even before his tenure as Severus Snape, as head of L’Academie du Vin in Paris. Bill Pullman will play the California vinery’s owner. Rachael Taylor, an Australian actress who is doing very well for herself this year, will play an intern. (She was one of the two girls allowed in the boys’ club of Transformers this summer. There will be no robots in this movie, though that would be an interesting take on wine competitions.) And Dushku will serve up as a local bartender.

Needless to say, Eliza as a bartender makes me think of my favorite Faith scene ever, where she simultaneously danced and kicked the ass of every guy in a club:

Unfortunately, the movie’s title probably doesn’t refer to a scene like this or to any dirty dancing with Sarah Michelle Gellar. But this film is actually a part of an even more bitter rivalry. According to decanter.com, we have two films slugging it out over the creative rights to dramatize that historic 1976 event. What this really makes me want is a Christopher Guest-style mockumentary about wine tastings or movies about wine tastings. Then maybe Jane Lynch could appear, offering inappropriate advice on everything from Parisian tourist attractions to the best swirl-n-spit methods of tasting wine. Now that’s a movie I’d pay to see.

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