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Jet-Setting with Ja Rule

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Ja Rule had a bit of fun in New York City this week, attending the premiere of The Day After Tomorrow, chatting up the action-thriller’s young star Jake Gyllenhaal, and later hitting trendy Spice Market for dinner. But we’re told he was looking forward to returning to work in Toronto the next day, where he’s filming Assault on Precinct 13 with Ethan Hawke, Laurence Fishburne, Drea de Matteo and John Leguizamo. “All of (the stars) are mostly in the same scenes, so they are a close-knit family,” says a source. “They are always hanging out together. They eat together. They have a really good time together.”

Monster Movie
If you thought Tony Soprano was the most unlikely candidate for therapy, think again. In July comes the release of Some Kind of Monster, a documentary that goes inside the heavy metal band Metallica as the members went through group therapy together. We talked to the band at the recent ASCAP Pop Music Awards in Beverly Hills, where they were honored with the Creative Voice Award.
Tell us about the movie.
James Hetfield (vocals, guitar): The movie is a documentary. It’s about our lives falling apart and coming back together within two years. Our careers, our home life, things like that. In kind of an insane career that we’ve chosen, us trying to be normal and human, our attempts at that. And regaining friendships again after going through lots of closing down and guardedness, just trying to become humans that run Metallica again.
Have you watched it together?
Hetfield: “Yeah, we’ve seen it a couple of times.”
Kirk Hammett (guitar): “We didn’t really have to watch it. We lived it.”
Lars Ulrich (drums): “First we lived it, then we watched it, then we got embarrassed about it.”
Hetfield: “We’re very proud of the movie. We’re very proud, but also very scared, because it’s us opening up – our guts are spilled on there and it’s the real us and a lot of our embarrassing and ugly times. We felt that it’s time to show that part of being in the music industry.”

Occupational Hazards
In filming Something the Lord Made (due May 30), Mary Stuart Masterson had to combat severe allergies in Eugene, Ore. – a place Native Americans nicknamed the Valley of Sickness and Death. “I didn’t know when I went there, but I learned by example,” she tells us. And if the sneezing wasn’t enough, she also had to do battle with the heebie-jeebies while filming scenes in a defunct mental hospital. “Those places have their own ghost-y feeling to them,” she says.

More Virgin Territory
An airline, personal electronics, books, a record label – what is there left for Richard Branson to tackle with his Virgin brand? Why, soft drinks, of course. In New York last week, Virgin offered the under-21 celeb crowd – Mischa Barton, Ashlee Simpson and Lindsay Lohan, among others – a sneak pre-taste of Virgin Cola. The sugary treat will be available to us mortals this summer, in oh-so-clever flavors like Blonde (cream soda), Jade (lemon-lime), Cherry (self-explanatory) and Black (regular cola). Thirsty?