Intertwining stories set in urban jungles are hot these days; Crash and Traffic both thrived on the big screen, and now Buddy Giovinazzo is adapting his own collection of short stories, Life is Hot in Cracktown. Evan Ross, Michael Rapaport, Kerry Washington and Victor Rasuk have signed on to star in the pic, which follows the lives of several people living in a crack-infested neighborhood. But will it feel fresh? Young drug dealers, distraught parents, kids getting killed on the streets -- it's all been done before. Here's hoping the talented cast helps to ignite a flame that lasts throughout.

In fact, the storyline isn't too much of a stretch for the four; Washington recently starred as a prostitute/addict in The Dead Girl; Rapaport has dabbled in a slew of urban dramas; Rasuk first crashed onto the scene in the little indie drama Raising Victor Vargas; and Ross -- son of Diana Ross -- broke through with ATL and has also signed on to another drug-related flick, Brooklyn to Manhattan. And speaking of Ross (who stars in the upcoming Pride), he's been wrapped up in a bit of controversy as of late after the MPAA banned a poster for Pride that featured Ross in a pair of "tight-fitting" swimming trunks. Perhaps the best response came from the Lionsgate spokesperson: "Apparently the MPAA accused us of enlarging his bulge. He's just naturally well-endowed. That's the long and short of it." Shouldn't we all be so lucky ...