Thanks to Jon Pace for forwarding this story about Winona Ryder landing the female lead in the upcoming Ron Howard film, Cheaters, starring Vince Vaughn and Kevin James. ¬†EW reports that Ryder beat out Kate Beckinsale and Uma Thurman for the role:
Why is the role so coveted? Well it turns out the film is no tried-and-true fat guy/hot wife comedy. Rather, the movie, from screenwriter Allan Loeb (21), centers on two best friends, played by James and Vaughn. When Vaughn‚Äôs character discovers that James‚Äô wife (Ryder) has cheated on his best friend, he confronts her directly and must decide whether or not he will tell his friend. (Thus, the film often pits Ryder‚Äôs character opposite Vaughn‚Äôs.) The movie is set to begin filming in Chicago in May.
And that makes it coveted because …? Either way, good on Winona Ryder for landing this right after wrapping Darren Aronofsky‚Äôs Black Swan. ¬†She’s been gone too long. And Oscar loves a comeback. No pressure.
I got a bit of a laugh out of this Big Hollywood post which plans to offer a new perspective on film criticism:
Over the past few weeks, thanks to a courageous Whistleblower ‚Äî a dedicated, savvy and patriotic individual ‚Äî Big Hollywood has accumulated, not one, not five, not twenty‚Ä¶ but nearly¬†fifty television and film screenplays¬†at various stages of development. Some of these scripts represent projects that have been completed and await¬†release. Some represent projects that¬†will never see the light of day.
But we have them. And we‚Äôre going to share them with you.
Diablo Cody is in on the joke. And this stripper-turned-writer is as agile on the page as she was on the stage: among her current projects are developing the sudsy ‚ÄúSweet Valley High‚Äù books into a film, while simultaneously writing an original screenplay called ‚ÄúYoung Adult,‚Äù about a divorced author of teen fiction who returns to her hometown to chase her now-married high school boyfriend. This is the kind of career-as-meta-gag that smart young writers dream of, but almost nobody can pull off. Cody, a Los Angeles resident (who in an earlier life was Brook Busey from Chicago), made her name with the Oscar-winning screenplay for ‚ÄúJuno.‚Äù She followed up with the Showtime series ‚ÄúUnited States of Tara,‚Äù a writerly tour de force about a suburban mom (played by Toni Collette) with multiple personalities, now in its second season. ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs safe to say that I need everything to be embellished, creatively or otherwise,‚Äù says Cody, 31. ‚ÄúJust like I‚Äôm inclined to put on too much jewelry or get too many tattoos, I need my writing to be a little over-the-top.
The only thing that frustrates me about Diablo Cody — and perplexes me at the same time — is that it’s all been a carefully cultivated identity she’s planned and executed. ¬†And it worked. ¬†I don’t blame her, nor do I blame the culture that she herself easily exploited. ¬†Like Quentin Tarantino, whose own persona has been carefully cultivated and is as much a part of his success as his writing, I wonder how long it can go on. ¬†Both are talented writers, imaginative, inventive people who create kooky worlds drenched in kitsch — my own fascination with them lingers more on how long they keep it up before they start delving into reality.
Just a little food for thought. ¬†Preparing to be attacked by the Tarantino fans in 5, 4, 3, 2 …
Rumblings on the internet forced George Lucas’ hand and he’s now revealing that there will be a animated series that will “look at the saga’s characters with a playful and irreverent tone,” said a statement released to Variety. It will be produced by Jennifer Hill, of the Backyardigans fame.
Hill told Variety, while the show is still in early development, it has “a lot of facets that could include main characters (from the movies) as well as secondary characters.” And added, “With the team we’re establishing, Matt Senreich and Seth Green, it’s going to be really fun and funny to the public. So I’m not too concerned about that.”
One might think that this would instill outrage with the writer/director of “The People vs. George Lucas’ Alexandre Philippe. But on the contrary, Philippe was quoted as saying, “(The new series) is a great example of how ‘Star Wars’ is still able to connect with fans old and new, and we’re looking forward to seeing it.”
The news broke a day or so ago that Aaron Sorkin was contemplating tackling the John Edwards failed politician/husband/father story. ¬†My thoughts immediately leapt to casting. But of course, Gawker beat us to the punch. ¬†This is how they see it playing out, depending on whose pulling the strings:
Aaron Sorkin: If the rumors are true, we’d like to see Edwards played by Tom Cruise, who can channel his years of experience as a good looking man with shiny hair and a slightly creepy demeanour to good effect. Annette Bening does put-upon wife dealing with her own issues better, and glossier, than anyone. Rielle Hunter, is a tougher call. Meg Ryan looks right, but is too likeable. Felicity Huffman is ideal, but not ditzy enough.
Jerry Bruckheimer: Josh Duhamel plays John Edwards, a man who must save the world by fucking videographers. Megan Fox is Elizabeth, his loyal wife who understands his mission, and sticks with him against the odds, in slow motion, while washing cars. Rielle Hunter is a CGI tank.
Paul Greengrass: Matt Damon plays John Edwards, a politician double-crossed by his government and condemned to run across rooftops and leap through windows for two-and-a-half-hours. Edwards and Hunter, played by Franke Potente, must team up to run around shakily and unravel a conspiracy woven years before by Elizabeth (played by Brendan Gleeson).
Spike Jonze: Gary Coleman plays John Edwards, a politician who is stuck in another man’s body. Catherine Keener is Elizabeth, a bored and sardonic wife who, through a quirk of genetics, is actually aging backwards. Rielle Hunter, who holds the key to Edwards’ transformation, plays herself.
Funny, funny. ¬†But in all seriousness, how would you cast it? ¬†I think Tom Cruise is ideal to play Edwards. ¬†I think Cruise could nail it, southern accent and all. ¬†Brad Pitt could pull it off but he’d need to be able to do a good accent, and I keep hearing his accent from Inglourious Basterds.
Elizabeth needs to be someone not lithe and spirited like Annette Bening but someone much more like Olivia De Havilland. ¬†Do we have any of those? Maybe Jeanne Tripplehorn, a The Firm reunion.
Rielle Hunter can be any blonde but one must remember she was around 42 when they met, so she’s no spring chicken. ¬†For the right actress, this could be a hell of a part. ¬†If it were me, I’d probably go with a blonde Marisa Tomei. ¬†I think she could get the voice right, the ditzy spirituality right and even kind of looks the part. ¬†Or, if they wanted it to be a Scientology joint, they could always go with Jenna Elfman. ¬†Hm.
This project, by the way, is supposedly going to be based on the Andrew Young tell-all. ¬†The story is much more interesting when you look at all of the participants, not just from the Youngs’ perceptive. ¬†Andrew Young’s own devotion to Edwards is as much a part of this love story as Rielle Hunter’s. ¬†To not be able to tell that right would all but ruin it. ¬†A better film would then have to be made that told the whole story.
Magnolia has just announced it will be handling the North American distribution for the documentary adaptation of the bestselling book, Freakonomics, about incentives-based thinking by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner. The film will bring together some of the super stars in documentary filmmaking: Oscar winner Alex Gibney (Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, Casino Jack and the United States of Money), Oscar nominees Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing (Jesus Camp), Oscar nominee Morgan Spurlock (Super Size Me), Eugene Jarecki (Why We Fight) and Seth Gordon (The King of Kong).
A Magnolia press release describes each director’s role: Alex Gibney takes a visually arresting look at the crumbling fa√ßade of Sumo wrestling and exposes searing and violent truths about this ancient and revered sport. Morgan Spurlock offers up a buoyant and revealing angle on the repercussions of baby names. Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing balance levity and candor with an eye-opening profile of underachieving kids incentivized to learn with cold hard cash. Finally, Eugene Jarecki investigates an unsettling theory to explain why crime rates dramatically dropped in the early ‚Äô90s. Seth Gordon weaves the pieces together with brisk interludes, providing context and commentary from the authors.
If you’re like me you’ve seen many films multiple times. The collection of movie quotes in one’s head can be very telling. Most of the time it reveals the time one came of age. I am going to throw out a whole mess of them. Some come from Oscar movies, some do not. Some come from the same movie. Fight the urge to google, although they are easy to find probably.
Have at it!
1. “Is CBS Corporate telling CBS News not to go to air with this story?”
2. “Have her then, but you’re a lordly fool. She’s been plucked since I saw her last and not by you. It takes a woman to know it.”
3. “Wouldn’t this be a great world if insecurity and desperation made us more attractive? If needy was a turn-on?”
The movie may be Hollywood’s first existential heist movie, and though that may not sound like typical fare for the air-conditioning months, Warners and Legendary Pictures are banking on the movie catching on as a brainy “Mission: Impossible” by way of “The Matrix”; the globe-trotting movie may have had its subconscious baggage packed by Sigmund Freud, in other words, but it also carries a passport stamped by Ian Fleming. DiCaprio says Nolan is the perfect director to turn that unlikely combination into a July hit.
Unplug your political sensibilities and revel in the mash-up of messianic complex with the military-industrial complex. While some of us might need to do some fancy rationalizing to resolve our conflicted feelings about celebrating vigilantism and promoting the privatization of the defense department, normal people can simply get off on the gadget porn. Conservatives won’t feel a bit conflicted, and Progressives get a vicarious NASCAR thrill. Best to heed the wisdom of Robert Downey Jr from three years ago:
“I see Tony Stark as the best and occasionally worst in Americans and citizens around the world… But the good news is, if it gets too heavy I can simply say, ‚ÄòDudes, it‚Äôs a comic book. Will you relax?‚Äô‚Äù
Sent to me via Twitter, @agadenreach. Described on IMDb as “A tragic love story set at the turn of the millennium in Milan. The film follows the fall of the haute bourgeoisie due to the forces of passion and unconditional love.”