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December 18, 2014

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Liberace film seeks people to act (naturally); chance meeting with Diceman at Peppermill

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  • Andrew Dice Clay, Rick Faugno
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  • Human Nature, Rich Natole
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  • Kats with the Dish
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Liberace Cars

An HBO crew secures cars, once owned by Liberace, onto a car carrier at the Liberace Museum parking lot, Wednesday July 11, 2012. The cars, a 1972 custom Bradley GT and a 1957 London taxi, are on loan to HBO for a project called Launch slideshow »

After some light blogging over the past few days (blame it on the chronicles of a European tour that is the cover of Las Vegas Weekly this week), it is high time to run the rake across the scene:

• Are you especially adept at milling about in a candid sort of way? If so, a casting director for the upcoming HBO movie “Behind the Candelabra” might be interested in hiring you as an extra for the film, which is shooting on location at LVH this month.

An open casting call is set for Sunday and Monday at LVH Ballroom C to fill roles for background actors in the film. The times are 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday and 2 to 6 p.m. Monday. The film shoots scenes in the hotel, where Liberace headlined in the day it was known as the Las Vegas Hilton, from Aug. 24-30.

No air date for the biopic has been announced, but the first photos of Michael Douglas as Liberace and Matt Damon as his longtime companion Scott Thorson have been published by the New York Daily News. Douglas is wearing a well-coiffed black wig, sizable shades and a yellow suit over a flower-patterned, button-down shirt. Damon’s hair is long and blond and parted in the middle. Kind of a Shaun Cassidy-influenced look, actually. Both actors appear pretty convincing, suitably dated and well-attired.

The Liberace Museum has infused some authenticity into the project by lending cars and other artifacts from the late showman’s collection at the closed-to-the-public Liberace Museum. But the Liberace Museum and Foundation has put the brakes on a formal endorsement of the film, noting (accurately) that the movie depicts a small segment of Liberace’s life as told by a onetime confidant with whom the entertainer had an oft-stormy relationship.

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Andrew Dice Clay at the Riviera on Oct. 20, 2011.

Andrew Dice Clay at the Riviera

Andrew Dice Clay at the Riviera on Oct. 20, 2011. Launch slideshow »

• Waiting to be seated late Saturday at Peppermill (where you never know who you will spot), I ran into Andrew Dice Clay. For real. He was with a fairly large entourage, maybe 10 people (including his son Max), and said he was prepping to film his role in the upcoming Woody Allen film this month. Clay is shaking his head at his good fortune, with this out-of-the-blue offer from Allen and a role (playing himself) in the final season of “Entourage.” Clay’s audiences at the Riviera’s Starlite Theater, where he performs monthly, have been filling strong -- packing the house, as he’s pleased to report.

One thing I noticed after Clay slipped off his shades after being seated: He’s wearing a black eye patch, looking like Captain Clay. Dice recently underwent minor surgery on his left eye. Nothing serious, and he’ll be back at the Riv from Thursday through Sunday.

Smokey Robinson and Human Nature Celebrate

Smokey Robinson is flanked by Human Nature at the Imperial Palace on May 11, 2010. Launch slideshow »

• Human Nature’s reported frustration with construction work at the Linq project at Imperial Palace has led the Australian Motown act to seek a new venue on the Strip. All that racket is bad for business. Reps of the group are investigating a move to the Venetian. But don’t rule out, yet, a move by Human Nature to a venue at a different Caesars Entertainment hotel. This is a hunch-inspired observation.

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Jonathan Segal, shown outside STK at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, his company's first Las Vegas venue.

• The One Group’s talks with MGM Resorts about a possible interactive, burlesque-themed nightclub in the Crazy Horse Paris theater at MGM Grand fizzled out several weeks ago. One Group is still pressing to open Bagatelle at Tropicana this month and the sports-themed restaurant Heraea at the Palms (which will replace Garduno’s Mexican restaurant) at the Palms by Thanksgiving week. One Group and Palms also have been hammering out details on another venue overhaul at the Palms.

• The popular Celtic-rock band Killian’s Angels has bid farewell to Brendan’s Irish Pub, closing out their weekend residency at the Orleans nightclub July 21. This was the second exit for the five-piece band fronted by master mandolinist Beth Mullaney. The Angels, as they are often called by their fans, also cleared out of Brendan’s in April 2010 but months later were invited back to fill occasional weekends. On the band’s final Friday appearance, one of the city’s most treasured musicians, violin great Sasha Semenoff, sat alone at a table near the stage to take in one of the band’s last shows at the club. He had just cruised over from Lombardi’s at Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood, where he works as a strolling violinist. He took $5 from my table, too, for a wistful rendition of “Volare.” Semenoff has been a friend of the band for years. Updates on their whereabouts, post-Brendan’s, are in process.

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John Padon of "Sin City Comedy."

• Sin City Theater at Planet Hollywood is opening a few weeks later than proprietor John Padon originally planned. Nothing serious, just more of the same in the venue-construction process. Padon's lengthy attempt to secure proper construction permits coupled with a longer-than-expected plumbing project has moved the opening date back to late September at the earliest, with the grand opening of the club on the hotel’s mezzanine level set for early October. The groundbreaking for construction at the club, which is to seat 300 and host a wide range of comedy and variety acts, took place today.

• Across the hall from that under-construction venue, at “Peepshow” theater, the guessing game is in full flourish as to who will replace Holly Madison in the show’s lead role. It seems producers are going with a big name, someone who has some stage experience in Strip production shows, if all this talk about Carmen Electra is to be believed. That name keeps surfacing from those who know about the show. We’ll see, eh?

• Writing about “Peepshow” prompts this wish of good fortune to Paula Castleton, the show’s dance captain and swing performer who could fill any role (including the lead of Bo Peep, on one occasion). Castleton has left “Peepshow” to explore opportunities in New York. She’s been one of the city’s great performers and contributors to the local entertainment scene since she arrived. Castleton never made too much of a big deal about herself, but those in the show will miss her leadership and talent.

Follow John Katsilometes on Twitter at Twitter.com/JohnnyKats. Also, follow “Kats With the Dish” at Twitter.com/KatsWiththeDish.

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