In Nora Ephron's "Sleepless in Seattle" a weepy Rosie O'Donnell, watching "An Affair to Remember" with a sniffling Meg Ryan 15 years ago, said, "Men never get this movie."
The notion of the "chick flick" thus came into its own. And Hollywood has been fretting about it ever since, trying to recapture that box office magic yet chafing at a label that is increasingly viewed as a marketplace trap. In New York and other locations, two of the most successful directors of the form -- Nora Ephron and P. J. Hogan -- are currently shooting what might pass for a couple of next-generation chick flicks. But those involved seem determined to avoid having that classification hung on their films, even if it is rooted in honest observation.
Mr. Hogan, who directed the 1997 hit "My Best Friend's Wedding," starring Julia Roberts, is filming "Confessions of a Shopaholic," with Isla Fisher in the lead role, for Touchstone Pictures, owned by the Walt Disney Company. The film is based on a literary series that began with the British publication of Sophie Kinsella's novel with that title in 2000, about a financial journalist with relationship problems and a penchant for overspending.
But the movie is not just for women, the filmmakers insist. "We all have spending habits, a lot of us do," said Jerry Bruckheimer, one of the film's producers, speaking by telephone last week.
"If we do our job right, this could be another 'Wedding Crashers,' " added Mr. Bruckheimer, best known for testosterone-fueled entertainments including "Bad Boys" and the "Pirates of the Caribbean" trilogy. He was referring to the 2005 comic hit that included Ms. Fisher, but actually starred Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson as a couple of playboys who cruise weddings for easy sex -- really not the stuff of chick flicks.
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