Lindsay Lohan faces the biggest crisis of her troubled career. She will spend the next two weeks in an L.A. jail and then 90 more days in rehab. This means she won't be available to promote her next film, the Robert Rodriguez action flick "Machete," which opens Sept. 3.
And her summer in the slammer has delayed production on "Inferno," in which she is to play 1970s adult film star Linda Lovelace. That project holds promise and if done right could have Hollywood talking about Lohan's acting ability rather than her antics.
However, writer-director Matthew Wilder has just one credit to his name -- the 2008 dark comedy "Your Name Here" inspired by the life of sci-fi writer Phillip Dick. And a recent explanation of his vision for this new film remains murky. As Wilder explained to RadarOnline.com, "There will be full frontal nudity but it will not be cinematic nudity, it will be more violent nudity. For example, linked images of the Vietnam war, that kind of context." Just what that means remains to be seen.
Lohan's efforts to promote this picture at the Cannes filmfest in May went awry. Volcanic ash ground flights and she missed a court appearance tied to her 2007 arrest for cocaine use and reckless driving. Back then, Lohan served 84 minutes in jail and was put on probation for three years. That was extended by one year when she failed to complete an alcohol-education course.
2007 marked a low point in her film career as well. Lohan starred as a pair of separated-at-birth twins in the horrific "I Know Who Killed Me." The film won a record eight Razzie Awards, including three for Lohan, who tied with herself for worst actress and won worst screen couple.
Less than a decade earlier, Lindsay Lohan had won over audiences and critics playing another set of twins in the 1998 Disney remake of "The Parent Trap." Five years later she starred in another Disney do-over -- "Freaky Friday" -- and won the breakthrough award at the MTV movie kudos. In 2004, she headlined the critically acclaimed "Mean Girls" and won both MTV Movie and Teen Choice awards.
Two years later, Lohan earned good reviews as part of the ensemble casts of a pair of prestigious projects. "A Prairie Home Companion" was the last film from auteur Robert Altman while "Bobby" marked the first feature helmed in a decade by actor Emilio Estevez. That film about events surrounding the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy was a contender at both the Golden Globes and Screen Actor Guild.
If Lohan is looking for inspiration in these dark days, one shining example is Robert Downey Jr., who also came to fame at a young age. He landed an Oscar nomination for "Chaplin" in 1992 but slid off the rails soon after and was arrested numerous times in the late 1990s before serving a year in jail. After his release, he turned to the small screen, winning a Golden Globe for a role on "Ally McBeal." While he lost that job after more trouble with the law, Downey eventually turned himself around and is now at the top of the A-list.
Photo: "Inferno" promotional poster. Credit: Tyler Shields.