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12 items from 2003


Attenborough's Funding Fight

25 August 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

British director Richard Attenborough has a battle on his hands to raise funds for the film he's desperate to make - which he fears backers find "old-fashioned". The Gandhi film-maker is desperate to find money for his planned $68.8 million biopic of 18th century revolutionary Thomas Paine, who wrote The Rights Of Man. He's got an A-list cast in mind, and believes in the project completely - but because his last two films, Grey Owl and In Love And War, flopped, finding backers to put up the cash has been impossible. The Oscar-winner says, "I want to do it more than anything else. I am convinced that it could have huge box office attraction, say if Daniel Day-Lewis would play the part. I hope I could get Anthony Hopkins to play Benjamin Franklin - and George Washington would be ideal for Michael Douglas or Martin Sheen. There is a fantastic girl's part and a fine Meryl Streep character. With those actors, you can start to talk. But it's too big a sum to raise on the street and neither the project nor I are obvious box office at the moment. Because I made these two failures - commercial and critical - I am not flavor of the month. In terms of current cinema and conventional box-office wisdom, I am old-fashioned." »

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Belle plucks title role in IFC's 'Rose'

7 April 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Camilla Belle is in negotiations to star opposite Daniel Day-Lewis in the title role of IFC Films' Rose and the Snake for writer-director Rebecca Miller. Up-and-coming actor Paul Dano (The Emperor's Club) also will star in the film, with Beau Bridges making an appearance in a small but pivotal role. Production begins in the summer with Catherine Keener also starring (HR 3/7). The project sees Day-Lewis star as a dying, widowed father of a 16-year-old girl named Rose (Belle). They live on an abandoned commune, where Rose has been sheltered from the world. When the father's new love, a single mom named Kathleen (Keener), and her two teenage boys, come to live with them, Rose undergoes a sexual awakening with both liberating and devastating consequences. Dano plays the sexually charged Thadius, the elder of the two boys, who immediately sets his sights on Rose. Bridges plays Marty Rance, a real estate developer interested in buying the commune from the father. Belle, repped by CAA, has starred in such films as The Lost World: Jurassic Park, The Patriot, Practical Magic and Invisible Circus. Dano, repped by the Gersh Agency and Industry Entertainment's Sandra Chan, won an Independent Spirit Award last year for his performance in the indie feature L.I.E. He just completed shooting New Regency's The Girl Next Door and will next play the lead in the indie film Light and the Sufferer for writer-director Chris Peditto. Bridges is also repped by CAA. »

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Julia Roberts Faces Ex-Beau Daniel Day-Lewis

26 March 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Julia Roberts sparked a flurry of whispers at Sunday night's Oscars - when she came face-to-face with ex-boyfriend Daniel Day-Lewis for the first time since their split. After the Academy Awards ceremony in Hollywood, Roberts attended the Governors Ball at the Kodak Theatre's ballroom - without her cameraman husband Danny Moder. According to eyewitnesses, during her dash to the back of the ball, the Oscar- winning actress paused briefly by the Miramax table where Day-Lewis was dining with his wife Rebecca Miller and the film studio's boss Bob Weinstein. But, according to the Los Angeles Daily News, Day-Lewis - who is said to have dumped Roberts in the midst of their relationship when she was a lesser-known actress - dismayed onlookers when he didn't even look up from his meal to greet Roberts. »

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Shock Winner Brody Stuns with Heartfelt Speech

25 March 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Movie star Adrien Brody brought Hollywood to its feet at the Oscars on Sunday night by scoring a shock win in the Best Actor category and then delivering a heartfelt message of peace. The Pianist star beat favorites Jack Nicholson and Daniel Day-Lewis and gained a standing ovation from his peers for an unscripted emotional speech. After a lengthy kiss with presenter Halle Berry, Brody admitted he didn't write a speech because "every time I've done that in the past I didn't win," and then he ordered the Oscars organizers to cut the music that marked the end of his 45 second acceptance speech. As the music fizzled out, Brody admitted he was sad to be accepting an award at "such a strange time." He continued, "My experiences of making this film made me very aware of the sadness and the dehumanization of people at times of war and the repercussions of war. Whoever you believe in, whether it's Allah or God, may he watch over you and let's pray for a peaceful and swift resolution. I have a friend in Queens who is a soldier in Kuwait and I hope you and your boys make it back real soon. I love you." Many felt the evening would be awash with the stars' thoughts on war and peace but only Brody, documentarian Michael Moore, Barbra Streisand, Chris Cooper, Spaniard Pedro Almodovar, Mexican actor Gael Garcia Bernal and a bumbling Nicole Kidman breached the subject. »

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Oscar Organizers: "The Show Will Go On"

13 March 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Oscars organizers have repeated their vow to hold the Academy Awards later this month irrespective of a war on Iraq - although the "tone" of the bash will change. Producer Gil Gates informed a Beverly Hills, California luncheon - which included nominees Nicole Kidman, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Sir Michael Caine and Nicolas Cage - that the ceremony will definitely go ahead in a fortnight's time. However, Gates also conceded that if America is at war with Iraq at the time, then the awards in the Kodak Theatre will be altered accordingly. He said, "If we are at war, the Oscar telecast will obviously reflect that reality. It will be reflected in areas that we can control as well as, no doubt, in the parts we can't control, such as your acceptance speeches. The show will go on and our purpose remains the same as it has for 75 years - to celebrate our art form and honor its most accomplished practioneers (sic)." Nominees Daniel Day-Lewis and Ed Harris agreed with Gates' sentiments. Day-Lewis, competing for Best Actor for his performance in Gangs Of New York, commented, "It would seem obscene if we were trouncing up a red carpet grinning and waving while all these people are dying somewhere in the world." The Hours supporting-actor Harris added, "You should still have it but the tone should change. The Oscars are not a political forum but a prayer for peace would be all right." »

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Backstage notes from the SAG Awards

10 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Miramax may not agree, but Catherine Zeta-Jones said audiences could've skipped Chicago, and she still would be over the moon about her experience on the Rob Marshall-directed musical. "I would've done this movie even if no one had seen it," the very pregnant winner for best supporting actress said. ... Best drama series Actor winner James Gandolfini did not have to wait long backstage before fielding questions regarding the suit he has filed against HBO about the upcoming fifth season of The Sopranos. But that did not mean he wanted to answer them. Gandolfini was relatively mum about the suit, which alleges that he was not notified when HBO agreed to pay series creator David Chase $20 million for the new season and in which he is asking to be let out of his contract. ... For a man who reportedly came out of retirement for his Actor-winning role in Miramax's Gangs of New York, you would think Daniel Day-Lewis would not be too keen on the awards circuit. Not so. "It is a lovely thing because I have been out of the running for some years now," Day-Lewis said after receiving the award for best lead actor in a film. »

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Verdict's in: 'Chicago' dances off with 3 SAG Awards

10 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

In show-biz lingo, Chicago, the all-singin', all-dancin', all-murderin' musical, killed them at the ninth annual Screen Actors Guild Awards. The Miramax Films adaptation of the 1975 Broadway show continued its awards season hot streak taking home three nods -- including trophies for actresses Renee Zellweger and Catherine Zeta-Jones and outstanding performance by a cast in a theatrical motion picture -- at the ceremonies Sunday night at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. There was no comparative sweep on the television side, though dark-themed dramas prevailed. HBO's mob hit The Sopranos claimed the female and male individual statuettes for stars Edie Falco and James Gandolfini, while the network's quirky mortuary dramedy Six Feet Under won the best cast in a drama series award. In similar fashion in the comedy field, Megan Mullally and Sean Hayes of NBC's Will & Grace won best actress and best actor, respectively, while the cast of CBS' Everybody Loves Raymond was victorious in the ensemble category. While that other Miramax movie, Gangs of New York, earned best acting honors for Daniel Day-Lewis, it was Chicago that dominated. Speaking on behalf of that film's ensemble, Richard Gere -- the movie's one principal who wasn't nominated for an Academy Award -- said, "Look, I've been doing this since I was 19 years old. That's a long time. ... And I have never, ever had such fun in my life as an actor. I didn't know what it meant to really be an actor until I did this, and I think we all felt the same way." »

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Keener snakes lead 'Rose' role for Miller, IFC

7 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Catherine Keener will star opposite Daniel Day-Lewis in IFC Films' Rose and the Snake for writer-director Rebecca Miller. Production begins in the summer. The project sees Day-Lewis star as a dying, widowed father to a 16-year-old girl named Rose. They live on an abandoned commune, where Rose has been largely sheltered from the world. When the father's new love, a single mom named Kathleen (Keener), and her two teenage boys come to live with them, Rose undergoes a sexual awakening with both liberating and devastating consequences. Initial Entertainment Group is handling foreign distribution on the project, which is being produced by Lemore Syvan. IFC's Jonathan Sehring and Caroline Kaplan and Initial's Graham King are executive producing. Keener, repped by the Gersh Agency, was nominated for a best supporting actress Oscar for her performance in 1999's Being John Malkovich. She was most recently seen in such films as Adaptation, Simone, Full Frontal and Lovely & Amazing. »

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Keener snakes lead 'Rose' role for Miller, IFC

7 March 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Catherine Keener will star opposite Daniel Day-Lewis in IFC Films' Rose and the Snake for writer-director Rebecca Miller. Production begins in the summer. The project sees Day-Lewis star as a dying, widowed father to a 16-year-old girl named Rose. They live on an abandoned commune, where Rose has been largely sheltered from the world. When the father's new love, a single mom named Kathleen (Keener), and her two teenage boys come to live with them, Rose undergoes a sexual awakening with both liberating and devastating consequences. Initial Entertainment Group is handling foreign distribution on the project, which is being produced by Lemore Syvan. IFC's Jonathan Sehring and Caroline Kaplan and Initial's Graham King are executive producing. Keener, repped by the Gersh Agency, was nominated for a best supporting actress Oscar for her performance in 1999's Being John Malkovich. She was most recently seen in such films as Adaptation, Simone, Full Frontal and Lovely & Amazing. »

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Daniel Attacks Harvey Over 'Gangs' Bluster

18 February 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Daniel Day-Lewis has blasted Miramax movie mogul Harvey Weinstein for turning the actor into a difficult-to-work-with enigma. The actor turned a blind eye to the Gangs Of New York producer's bluster about how Mafia meetings, midnight phone calls and transatlantic flights were arranged to encourage Day-Lewis to take the part he was Oscar nominated for last week. But now he thinks Hollywood has got the impression that he's an impossible person to work with. He says, "That was all Harvey's gas. He should take a pill for that stuff. The story about the dinner with all the gangsters, what a ridiculous f***ing thing. I just needed to take my time. I just didn't know if I had it in me." Day-Lewis also denies reports that co-star Leonardo DiCaprio flew to Ireland in a last-ditch attempt to persuade his hero to sign up for the film. He adds, "I met him in New York. I'd come to talk to Martin Scorsese." »

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Day-Lewis Ready for Exile Again

13 January 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

His stunning role in Oscar-tipped Gangs Of New York has not proved enough to tempt Daniel Day-Lewis out of retirement for good - the British star can't wait to escape the limelight again. The Academy Award winning actor has won widespread critical acclaim for his role as the villainous Bill The Butcher in Martin Scorsese's New York gangland epic, his first film since The Boxer in 1997 - with many pundits tipping him to win his second Oscar in March. But Day-Lewis - who won the Best Actor award in 1989 for his moving role in My Left Foot - insists he has no plans to hang around in Hollywood. The 45-year-old says, "I've always felt a great sense of disappointment, and it's taken me longer and longer to overcome it. There's always a general sense of having fallen short. It's just 'is that all it was? I thought it was bigger than that'. It always seems terribly small to me, so to be honest, I'm not sure I'd like to do it again. I have no plans to work on a film any time soon. I've managed to avoid it for the past five years." »

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British 'Gangs' Premiere Stuns DiCaprio

8 January 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Gangs Of New York star Leonardo DiCaprio was left stunned after British fans turned out in thousands to greet him at the film's London premiere last night. The 28-year old heartthrob arrived in the British capital's Leicester Square on a freezing January night to be greeted by the 2,000 well wishers who were delighted when he gave an impromptu five minute walkabout to sign autographs. DiCaprio, who was accompanied by co-stars Daniel Day-Lewis and Jim Broadbent, said, "It is just surreal. It was pretty intense out there. This has been the biggest crowd so far, we didn't get that in Paris or Berlin. To be honest, it's made me dizzy. It's absolutely freezing out here and the support is unbelievable." Day-Lewis also took the opportunity to deny reports that he is planning to retire from the movie business saying, "It's not so much I'm retiring. As much as I love the work I also love to stay away from it. I've really no idea what I'm going to be doing next." Other stars who turned out to the gala screening were Smallville star Kelly Brook and her The Transporter boyfriend Jason Stantham and Joan Collins with husband Percy Gibson. »

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12 items from 2003


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