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• Boardwalk Empire actor Jack Huston will take the chariot reins as the title role in the upcoming remake of Ben-Hur. Previously, Tom Hiddleston had been in talks for the role of slave Judah Ben-Hur in the Paramount and MGM picture. Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted) is directing the film adapted by John Ridley (12 Years a Slave) and Keith Clarke (The Way Back) that is said to be based more on Lew Wallace’s 1880 novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ than the 1959 film that starred Charlton Heston. Morgan Freeman has already been cast as Ildarin, the teacher who helps make the slave Ben-Hur into chariot racer champion. »
- Jake Perlman
Actor-director to present new comedy-drama Wish I Was Here.
Braff wrote the screenplay, directed, co-produced and also stars in the film, which became one of the first major productions to take advantage of Kickstarter crowdfunding.
Producer Michael Shamberg will accompany Braff at the festival. Shamberg is set to receive the Career Achievement Award prior to the premiere on Sep 26 at the Cinema Corso.
Wish I Was Here stars Braff as a man at a crossroads, which forces him to examine his life, his career, and his family. The film co-stars Kate Hudson, Joey King, Pierce Gagnon and Adam Braff, who co-wrote the screenplay.
The film debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in January, was released in the Us in July and will receive its theatrical release in the UK this weekend.
Braff starred »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Michael Rosser)
Zach Braff cemented himself as a filmmaker to watch with his debut feature Garden State in 2004, but it's taken him a decade to make follow-up Wish I Was Here. So why the long wait? After initially searching for funding and full creative control within the studio system, the former Scrubs star turned to Kickstarter after feeling resistance from the industry who'd lavished praise on his first film.
Digital Spy caught up with Braff on the eve of Wish I Was Here's UK release to discuss his eagerly-awaited movie comeback...
After 10 years away from the director's chair, did he miss it?
"I really did. I directed episodes of Scrubs and I directed a pilot and some smaller things but I was really, really excited to direct another film. I just feel most at home directing a film, I just feel like I was made to do it. I'd wanted to »
Wish I Was Here, 2014.
Directed by Zach Braff.
Aidan Bloom is a 35-year-old man who finds himself at major crossroads, which forces him to examine his life, his career, and his family.
Much has been made of Wish I Was Here even before a metaphorical ball was “kicked”. After many failed attempts to get any sort of project going since his first film, 2004’s superb Garden State, writer-director Zach Braff’s sophomore effort comes with the weight of two different expectations: the success of State, but now from 47,000-odd fans and followers who have helped part-fund the film outside of the “system”. Finally, a decade on from his first jump into the world of directing, Braff is back and whether you’re already a fan or not, »
- Scott Davis
Director: Zach Braff
Running Time: 106 minutes
Synopsis: Aidan Bloom is a 35-year-old man who finds himself at major crossroads, which forces him to examine his life, his career, and his family.
I’m a huge fan of Zach Braff’s directorial debut Garden State (2004) and I found that I both related to and enjoyed on its own merit; in equal measure. Braff merged a curious mix of cleverness with reality and now in Wish I Was Here he does it again but with additional heart alongside a positive flirtation with nostalgia.
Wish I Was Here has been co-written with Zach’s brother Adam J. Braff, and while it primarily focuses around 35-year-old Aidan Bloom (Zach Braff), who’s found himself struggling at a crossroads in his life, it also dives deeply to discuss relationships with family »
- Dan Bullock
Director: Zach Braff; Screenwriters: Zach Braff, Adam J Braff; Starring: Zach Braff, Kate Hudson, Joey King, Pierce Gagnon, Josh Gad, Jim Parsons, Ashley Greene, Mandy Patinkin; Running time: 107 mins; Certificate: 15
After the acclaimed dramedy stylings of Garden State, it's taken Zach Braff a decade and some Kickstarter crowdfunding to get his second feature (as director) off the ground and in the end, Wish I Was Here looks destined to disappear up its own backside. Apparently, Braff is still struggling with the same issues; again playing a failing actor trying to get in touch with his real feelings, in the real world. But at 35 years old, the 'little boy lost' routine is more pathetic than sympathetic.
As co-writer of the script (with brother, Adam), Braff gives himself a major stumbling block to get over in making Aidan a worthy hero. The guy fancies himself as an astronaut saving the world while away from his fantasies, »
William Faulkner’s impressionistic novel The Sound and The Fury was published to little initial acclaim or success in 1929, and tells of the dissolution of a genteel family in the American south from the end of the Civil War into the first decades of the 20th century. The novel set the template for the down-at-heel Southern aristocratic tropes (incest, mental illness, alcoholism, etc) which has been endlessly replayed and parodied in popular culture, but the impressionistic, stream-of-consciousness prose and overlapping four-part narrative makes it a less than obvious choice for film adaptation.
The seemingly workaholic James Franco should have left well enough alone; his adaptation (following on from a poorly received 1959 film version by director Martin Ritt) is a laughable mis-fire on all fronts. The film reduces the novel’s four-part narrative to a three-part structure told from the points of view of brothers Benjy (Franco), Quentin (Jacob Loeb) and Jason (Scott Haze) Compson. »
- Ian Gilchrist
While his ambitions frequently exceed his reach — sometimes by a substantial distance — James Franco gets an undeserved amount of grief for his various auteurist projects. It’s hard to think of another matinee idol so eager to spend his cultural capital on ventures that more reasonable, less imaginative movie stars would consider pure folly, and in an increasingly risk-averse Hollywood, that’s nothing to sneeze at. , failing to capture the weird, entrancing, often maddening ambiance of the great writer’s elliptical masterpiece, and its surfeit of half-baked film-student flourishes and needless cameos occasionally give it an amateur-hour feel. But Franco nonetheless shows improvement over 2013’s “As I Lay Dying,” and well, it’s hard to fault him for trying.
Published in 1929, Faulkner’s novel skips, stream-of-consciousness-style, through the calamitous history of the Compson clan, a once-noble Mississippi family gone to seed, with four sections told from four different perspectives, a structure Franco retains here. »
- Andrew Barker
James Franco seems to be as busy as ever. The tireless actor, filmmaker, poet, samurai, infantryman, Blue Angels pilot, second string football kicker (Ok, only a couple of those) is being honored by the Venice Film Festival this week, where he has a new film, "The Sound and the Fury," screening out of competition. It's the 36-year-old's second William Faulkner adaptation after 2013 Cannes premiere "As I Lay Dying," and it's just one of a slew of features and documentaries Franco has on the horizon. In addition to being prolific behind the camera, Franco also has collaborations with Werner Herzog and Wim Wenders on the way, as well as new projects with his "This is the End" cohorts Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg — just to scratch the surface. I can't imagine when the guy sleeps. Ahead of the Venice honor and the premiere of "The Sound and the Fury," a clip »
- Kristopher Tapley
I was originally going to see James Franco's William Faulkner adaptation The Sound and Fury in Toronto on Friday, but I think I'm opting to see the Viggo Mortensen starrer Far from Men instead. After all, I doubt it will be long before this one is streaming or at least available domestically while Far from Men may take a little longer to find itself a domestic distributor. That said, the first clip from Franco's new movie has arrived as it will be having its world premiere this Friday at the Venice Film Festival, followed by a North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on Saturday. I caught Franco's previous Faulkner adaptation As I Lay Dying at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival (read the review here) and it was an intriguing experimental piece, but the pace at which he churns these things out makes me wonder just how much »
- Brad Brevet
Nothing – but nothing! – is un-filmable for James Franco. Novel about a necrophiliac psychopath? Modernist tome written primarily in stream-of-consciousness Southern vernacular? He’ll give them all a shot. Franco’s latest attempt at cinematic immortality is The Sound and the Fury, an adaptation of William Faulkner’s brilliant (and difficult) novel that follows the trials and tribulations of the Compson family as they live, love, and destroy themselves from the inside out.
The Sound and the Fury stars Franco himself in the role of Benjy Compson, the mentally-disabled brother who begins the book’s narrative. We will not see him in this first clip coming out of the Venice International Film Festival, however; instead, we’re favored with the performances of Scott Haze, as the younger Jason Compson and Joey King as Miss Quentin. We also get to see how Franco handles his camera, which is intense but just a »
- Lauren Humphries-Brooks
It's not a film festival without James Franco unveiling a short film, book of poetry, feature effort, art installation or something, and so the polymath is rolling into Venice with "The Sound And The Fury." Yep, the work of William Faulkner is getting the Franco treatment, again, and the first clip is here to give you a sampling of how it all turns out. Joey King, Tim Blake Nelson, Ahna O'Reilly, Seth Rogen, Danny McBride, Scott Haze, Jon Hamm and Franco himself all appear in this saga about the lives and intrigues of the southern Compson family, who find themselves in decline. This clip reveals that Franco has dropped the split-screen stylization of his previous Faulkner effort, "As I Lay Dying," and as a result, the drama appears more direct and intense. Overall, it seems more accomplished than that the previous effort too, so we're curious to see if Franco nailed it this time out. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Thanks to the difficulty of William Faulkner’s stream-of-consciousness writing, his novel The Sound and the Fury has only seen one major film adaptation, released in 1959. That is, until James Franco decided to take a stab at the perennial high school English-class favorite. Franco’s adaptation, which he directed and also stars in, has a new clip to show fans of Franco and the novel what’s in store.
Debuted by Deadline, the clip is notably Franco-free; it depicts Scott Haze’s Jason Compson IV reprimanding his niece Miss Quentin (Joey King) for her appearance. Their servant Dilsey (Loretta Devine »
- Jonathon Dornbush
Trouble is brewing in the Compson family in the latest look at the William Faulkner adaptation, posted by Deadline.
Franco is directing the film - his second Faulkner adaptation following As I Lay Dying.
The Sound and the Fury centres around an ill-fated southern family.
The movie will premiere at the Venice Film Festival.
Franco will receive the Jaeger-LeCoultre Glory award at the film festival. »
Hopefully you’ve had your morning coffee and don’t plan on having a glass of wine for a while now because these new clips from The Sound and the Fury and The Riot Club might make you think twice about drinking either of them. James Franco’s latest is just days away from its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival and has its Toronto International Film Festival screening coming up right after, so the team behind it has unveiled a clip from the film, teasing the intensity we’ve got coming. We’ve also got Lone Scherfig’s The Riot Club making its way to Tiff for a world premiere. Even though Joey King and Scott Haze both look like they can get a little nasty in that piece from The Sound and the Fury, the Riot Club clip actually might be tougher to stomach. Hit the jump to find out why. »
- Perri Nemiroff
Take a look at this brand new clip from James Franco’s latest movie The Sound And The Fury. The clip has been released ahead of its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival. While the movie will be premiering out of competition, Franco has also received the Jaeger-LeCoultre Glory to the Filmmaker Award.
The Sound And The Fury, adapted from the novel of the same name by William Faulkner, tells the story of The Compson Family, former Southern aristocrats who are dealing with their family’s declining reputation in the community. Franco stars in the film alongside Joey King, Scott Haze, Tim Blake Nelson, Ahna O’Reilly, Seth Rogen, Dave Franco and Jon Hamm.
This is the second time that Franco has brought Faulkner to the big screen (the first being As I Lay Dying) and it is something that Franco has got used to despite the fact that »
- Lucy Cave
Exclusive: Prolific jack-of-all-artistic-trades James Franco arrives on the Lido this week to accept the Venice Film Festival’s Jaeger-LeCoultre Glory to the Filmmaker Award, which goes to a personality who has made an original contribution to innovation in contemporary cinema. Fitting then that his latest directorial effort, The Sound And The Fury, will have its world premiere out of competition at the fest (see the exclusive clip above).
The film is based on the novel of by William Faulkner; it’s Franco’s second time adapting the author — a notoriously tough challenge given the author’s penchant for stream of consciousness. Franco tells me he nevertheless stayed faithful to the book, which is broken into four sections and focuses on the decline and fall of the Compsons, a once-proud, aristocratic Southern family. A major obstacle to translating their story »
- Nancy Tartaglione
As we look in the rearview mirror of the summer blockbusters, September heralds the start of the fall movie season. Filled with Hollywood heavyweights and A-listers, here’s our Big list of the most anticipated movies coming to cinemas this autumn and during the holidays.
Our exhaustive list includes films that are playing at the upcoming Toronto Film Festival as well the ones that already have a theatrical release date. With the awards season on the horizon, we also added a few bonus films at the end to keep your eye out for in the months ahead.
Pull up a chair, grab a pen and paper and get ready for Wamg’s Guide to the 100+ Films This Fall And Holiday Season.
We kick it off with what’s showing in Toronto at the film festival that runs September 4 – 14.
- Movie Geeks
Next month sees the UK release of Wish I Was Here, former Scrubs star Zach Braff’s first directorial offering since 2004′s Garden State, and Koch Media Films has dropped a new UK poster for the Kickstarter-funded comedy drama, which we have for you here…
Wish I Was Here opens in the UK on September 19th, with Braff joined in the cast by Kate Hudson (The Killer Inside Me), Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory), Josh Gad (Frozen), Joey King (The Dark Knight Rises), Ashley Greene (The Twilight Saga), Donald Faison (Scrubs), Pierce Gagnon (Looper), Michael Weston (The Last Kiss), the late James Avery (The Fresh Prince of Bel Air), and Mandy Patinkin (Homeland). Watch the trailer here.
- Gary Collinson
The Emmy Awards aren’t till Monday, Aug. 25, but the celebrations start early. Variety will be on hand inside the best parties around Hollywood as the stars mingle, nibble and toast to TV’s finest. Here’s our party report for Saturday, Aug. 23:
11:10 a.m. “Nashville’s” Rayna James is “a woman that we need to see in country music,” says honoree Callie Khouri at the Women Making History Event, presented by the National Women’s History Museum and Glamour Magazine, at the Skirball Center. (She also teases that the “Nashville” premiere is going to feature two live performances in the show.) She thinks it’s incredible to see more women directing TV and as showrunners. “Nashville” boasts a largely female writing staff and women in main storylines.
11:36 a.m. Sophia Bush, also being honored, stops to blush when her mom stands behind the press snapping photos »
- Cynthia Littleton, Laura Prudom and Shalini Dore
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