Tom O’Neil got a scoop, a Scott Rudin scoop, when attending a special screening for Doubt. In case you missed it, The Soloist was pushed to 2009 and thus, they had no shot but to pull it from the AFI fest lineup. That giant hole has not been filled, though producer Scott Rudin is slightly nervous about Doubt being tossed out there to the hungry lions so early in the game. But is it early? Right about now is the time for buzz to start building if anyone expects to win critics’ awards. Not everyone can be Paul Thomas Anderson and win awards before everyone else sees the film. Here’s Tom O’Neil:
Sources tell Gold Derby that AFI was reluctant to replace “The Soloist” after news broke last week that its release will be delayed till next March, but DreamWorks execs pressed hard for it being swapped out, leading to an initial stand-off. Only when DreamWorks made it clear that it could not guarantee that “The Soloist” stars, who voiced queasiness about such an advance debut, would appear on the AFI red carpet did pressure build on the fest to buckle. Obviously, “The Soloist” would have to be replaced with another prestige film whose stars would agree to last-minute plans be in L.A. next week. Few options seemed to be immediately available, but Scott Rudin rallied his team to meet the challenge. Apparently, that means that stars Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Amy Adams will be in attendance.
“It was hard enough to pull everything together in such a short time,” Rudin said, “but to do it before we even had the first industry reaction to the film ‚Äî that was the hardest part. But we did it and I’m glad we did.”
The article then talks about Rudin having test screened the film already and screened it to several long-lead critics but he doesn’t know what they think because they haven’t published their reviews. I guess I’ll just have to say it: The Soloist must really suck balls.
I’ve been looking forward to Doubt all year. I hope it is as good as it looks. I’m imagining how the SAG voters are take to this one. Gee, you think they’ll like it?