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WIN A DATE WITH TAD HAMILTON

About The Production (Continued)
No love triangle would be complete without some challenge between the two suitors vying for Rosalee's affections, and the combination of Topher Grace and Josh Duhamel presented Luketic with an opportunity for some physical comedy. "In a physical sense, they are polar opposites of each other, which provides for some very funny situations. Josh is this tall ‘hunk-a-rama' man, and then you have Topher who is in the more slim, handsome department…sorry, Topher,” he laughs.

Far from being offended, Grace asserts that Pete's one-on-one match with Tad is one of his favorite sequences in the movie. "There is clearly a lot of friction in this triangle, even though they're not admitting it, especially Pete. At a certain point, they meet in a kind of competition, and you've got that testosterone…you know, that mano y mano thing. That's my favorite part of the movie, especially that wood-chopping scene,” Grace says, referring to Pete's miscalculated attempt to contest Tad's farming skills.

Pete may be none too thrilled about Tad Hamilton turning up in Fraziers Bottom, but Rosalee's other best friend, Cathy, is elated. Another huge Tad Hamilton fan, Cathy had been content to live vicariously through her friend's dream date, but when Tad shows up at the Piggly Wiggly where they work together, Cathy is ecstatic actually to meet the dream.

Cathy is played by Ginnifer Goodwin, who affirms that her character harbors no jealousy over her friend's sudden fairy-tale life. "Rosalee and Cathy have been best friends since childhood, so Cathy is genuinely happy for her. Cathy believes in living life to the fullest, so she sees this whole thing as a great opportunity for love and adventure. She is just having fun living in this fantasy come true and is 100 percent supportive of whatever her friend decides.” 

Luketic calls Goodwin "a complete scene stealer. She plays the best friend to Rosalee who is definitely the racier of the two. Ginnifer came in to read and charmed the pants off us. It was once again the notion of casting opposites. They complement each other so well—the beautiful blonde, Kate Bosworth, and the vivacious, sexy brunette, Ginnifer Goodwin, who was wonderful in the role of Cathy.”

Tad's arrival in West Virginia also has a profound effect on Rosalee's dad, Henry Futch, played by Gary Cole. "Henry is quite taken with Tad Hamilton, just like everybody else,” Cole says. "He is intent on impressing him with his knowledge of ‘the business.' I think he fancies himself to be somewhat of an insider, even though he's about as outside as you could get.”

Luketic remarks, "The great thing about Gary is that he has, in fact, been a successful actor in Hollywood for so many years. But when he plays this down-home, folksy dad who enjoys rubbing elbows with this big star, he makes it believable and very funny at the same time.” 

Like any star of his magnitude, Tad Hamilton has handlers, consisting of his agent, Richard Levy, and his manager, also named Richard Levy. Screenwriter Victor Levin says that he chose the same name for both as one of script's few Hollywood inside jokes, because "in Hollywood, it's as common a name as John Smith.” He delineated them by designating Tad's high-powered agent as "Richard Levy the Driven,” and Tad's opportunistic manager as "Richard Levy the Shameless.”

"Richard Levy the Driven is exactly that,” Levin expounds. "His primary concern is making money for his client—and thereby himself—and, for Heaven's sake, avoiding bad publicity. Whereas Richard Levy the Shameless is all about the perks: the money, the power, the private jets and all of the other pleasure-seeking accoutrements of this loony industry.”

It was the two Richard Levys who conjured up the "Win a Date” contest, never imagining how their plan could backfire. But when Tad leaves the trappings of stardom for a simpler life with Ro

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