D'oh is well for Homer in the making of "The Simpsons Movie." Two scenes from the July 27, 2007, release, played for the first time publicly at Comic-Con, show the Simpsons' patriarch in his familiar state of peril. In one scene, an angry mob storms the Simpson house trying to kill Homer. Homer first thinks they may be after his father, Grampa, until the older man yells: "I'm part of the mob." In a scene in the frozen wilderness, a whip-happy Homer gets mauled by sled dogs. Nearly a dozen of the TV series' veterans, including creator Matt Groening, are writing the film. With "The Simpsons" approaching its 400th episode this season, Al Jean, executive producer of the show and one of the film's writers, says the film provides more time to tell a story. "There's a lot that happens, but we're not giving any other details away." - Bill Keveney
'What It Is'? All funk, that's what
A common thread connects the songs "Funky John," "Funky Canyon," "Funky Thing," "Funky Nassau" and "Funky to the Bone." Can you guess what it is? Yep. "What It Is! Funky Soul and Rare Grooves (1967-1977)," a four-CD box set due Oct. 3 on Rhino, celebrates funk at its hip-grinding, bass-slapping best. Culled from the vaults of Atlantic, Atco and Warner Bros., the 91 tracks include funk classics, rarities and unreleased gems, such as a reverb-capped alternate version of Aretha Franklin's "Rock Steady."
Dubbed "pimpalicious," the $65 set showcases Little Richard, Wilson Pickett, Curtis Mayfield, Earth Wind and Fire, The Commodores and Sly Stone, whose "I'm Just Like You" was recorded under the pseudonym 6IX. Claudia Lennear turns in what could be the project's mission statement: "Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky." - Edna Gundersen
'X-Men' collector's DVD to include comic
The summer blockbuster "X-Men: The Last Stand" is mutating into a many-faceted $30 DVD. Fox Home Entertainment will also release a $40 collector's edition (both Oct. 3) that includes an exclusive 100-page book with a story by Stan Lee, who created the comic in 1963 with artist Jack Kirby. The story, "The Unlikely Saga of Magneto, Xavier and Stan," is "the most offbeat, wildest, wackiest plot I could think of, using myself as the fall guy," Lee says. Both versions have commentaries by director Brett Ratner and producer Avi Arad. Other extras: three alternate endings, deleted and extended scenes. - Mike Snider
It's another turn at 'Bat' for Meat Loaf
Ready for more Meat Loaf? The rocker who brought us "Bat Out of Hell" and "Bat Out of Hell II" is now serving up "Bat on Broadway." The one-time-only live event will showcase songs from both discs as well as a new CD titled - you guessed it - "Bat Out of Hell III," due Halloween.
Mr. Loaf's Broadway opus will happen sometime after the new album's release this fall. As an appetizer, he'll present "Meat Loaf - Bat Out of Hell Acts 1, 2 & 3" live at Royal Albert Hall on Oct. 16. That show will be broadcast and recorded for DVD release.The album features songs by Jim Steinman and Todd Rundgren, alumni of the first Bat. Motley Crue's Nikki Six and Steve Vai also contribute. - Elysa Gardne