David Lynch's Banned Bovine

Maybe Lynch’s beheaded bovine is just a reflection of a mayor who will no longer allow his home to be known as “Sin City.” Under the Giuliani administration, nude dancers have had to face all sorts of restrictions, and the number of adult clubs have dwindled. Billy’s Topless and other adult establishments, once the staple of midtown Manhattan, have been forced to change their names. It’s now “Billy’s Stopless,” because the once bare-chested ladies can’t take it all off.

At least it’s fair: no topless gals, no topless cows.

A Bovine Intern

Lynch says he has to smile, but it’s a sobering experience. “I worked four days and a night on this project,” he said. “It shows you what happens when one person makes a decision for the rest of us.”

Some could see it as a setback for the director, who hit a high point in popularity with his Twin Peaks TV show in the early 1990s. He fell into a slump after the movie version flopped.

His last film, The Straight Story, tells the tale of an elderly man who drives a ’66 John Deere lawnmower from Iowa to Wisconsin to make amends with his long-estranged brother. It was well received by critics but didn’t get much notice at theaters.

Now, Lynch’s latest effort, Mulholland Drive, has hit some production snags. But he says, “Things are working out and it is moving forward.”

Lynch couldn’t make it to the opening of his “Eat My Fear” cow. But he says the controversial cow will soon be auctioned off for charity, so he doesn’t think the four days he spent on the project wasted.

If it’s a bittersweet ending, Lynch can take heart that there were at least two other banned bovines. City officials turned away one cow dressed as a Hasidic Jew and another named “Monicow Lewinsky.” Buck Wolf is a producer at ABCNEWS.com. The Wolf Files is a weekly feature of the U.S. Section. If you want to receive weekly notice when a new column is published, join the e-mail list.

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