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. Measured and absorbing rather than deeply compelling or vital, this latest adaptation of a rarely well-filmed novel makes a strong effort to capture the stiflingly provincial world that Flaubert was able to describe in such precise, painstaking detail on the page. If the slow-burning result falls somewhat short of that admittedly Herculean feat, there are fine compensations in Barthes’ exquisite visual sense (aided by Andrij Parekh’s widescreen imagery) and another fiercely unsympathetic performance from Mia Wasikowska in the title role. Following its Telluride and Toronto berths, this classy period piece deserves to find a discerning arthouse niche.
Although Flaubert’s once-controversial realist masterwork has yielded no shortage of TV and film adaptations (including Vincente Minnelli’s 1949 version and Claude Chabrol’s 1991 picture with Isabelle Huppert), Barthe’s film is billing itself as the first one to be directed by a woman — a savvy enough hook for this particular proto-feminist literary heroine. »
- Justin Chang
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
• Tony winner Billy Crudup may be taking a step in the Spotlight. The Watchmen star is in talks to join the ensemble drama based on the Catholic Church cover-up of pedophiliac priests in Massachusetts and The Boston Globe investigation that followed. Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber and Stanley Tucci will all star in the film from director Tom McCarthy (Win Win) and written by Josh Singer (The Fifth Estate). Crudup would play the lead attorney for the victims, Eric MacLeish. [THR]
- Jake Perlman
After making her directing debut with In A World, Lake Bell will take her sophomore turn behind the camera with The Emperor’s Children for Imagine Entertainment. Noah Baumbach adapted the script from Claire Messud’s 2006 book about three friends in their early thirties living in NYC in the months leading up to September 11, 2001. Brian Grazer and Erica Huggins are producing for Imagine. Bell wrote, directed, and starred in In A World, which nabbed her Sundance’s Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award along with an Indie Spirit Award nomination for Best First Screenplay. She stars in the upcoming The Coup for TWC and in Man Up opposite Simon Pegg.
Neophyte thesp Jack Kilmer will play one of a handful of infamous college research subjects in The Stanford Prison Experiment, now filming in L.A. The film directed by Kyle Patrick Alvarez from Tim Talbott’s script chronicles the notorious 1971 experiment conducted at Stanford University, »
- Jen Yamato
It was only yesterday that we brought you the trailer to Billy Crudup’s latest venture, Rudderless, and now it looks like he might be attaching his name to something else. News has surfaced that the Almost Famous actor will star alongside Ezra Miller (We Need To Talk About Kevin) and Michael Angarano (The Brass Teapot) in Stanford Prison Experiment, based on true events.
With a script penned by Tim Talbott (South Park, Chicago Fire), the story is taken from an experiment conducted at Stanford University in the 1970s. A group of 19 and 20 year-old students are separated into two groups – prisoners and wardens. With a two week trial period, the participants are left to their own devices. However, with free reign to do what they want – and having gone a little power-crazy – the experiment has to be cut short due to ‘sadistic’ abuse.
As I said in yesterday’s article, »
- Jazmine Sky Bradley
Following a pair of breakthrough performances from Ezra Miller in We Need to Talk About Kevin and The Perks of Being A Wallflower, we haven't seen the actor get nearly as much work as we want him to. But now he's lined up what could be a promising indie project with Billy Crudup and Michael Angarano in the Stanford Prison Experiment. Based on the social study of the same name, the film has been in development for over a decade and The Wrap reports it's coming together with C.O.G. director Kyle Patrick Alvarez at the helm. This certainly seems like timely subject matter considering what's going on in Ferguson, Missouri. For those who don't know the Stanford Prison Experiment was a study conducted at the university back in 1971 where randomly-chosen 19 and 20-year-old students were divided into camps of either prison guards or prisoners and left conduct themselves as they would in a jail. »
- Ethan Anderton
• Mark Wahlberg may star in the Bp oil rig explosion film Deepwater Horizon from All Is Lost director J.C. Chandor. The movie is adapted from The New York Times article “Deepwater Horizon’s Final Hour” and is based on the true story of the men who worked on the rig in the Gulf of Mexico when it exploded in 2010, causing one of the worst oil spills in history. Wahlberg would play the No. 2 manager on site. Matthew Michael Carnahan (World War Z) has adapted the latest draft based on an original version written by Matthew Sand. [Deadline]
• Warner Bros. has acquired »
- Jake Perlman
After more than a decade in development, a movie about the infamous “Stanford Prison Experiment” is finally moving forward with Billy Crudup, Ezra Miller and Michael Angarano set to star and “C.O.G.” filmmaker Kyle Patrick Alvarez (“C.O.G.”) directing, TheWrap has learned. Sandbar Pictures and Abandon Features are financing the indie project, which Brent Emery and Lizzie Friedman are producing with Greg Little, Lauren Bratman and “The Hurt Locker” star Brian Geraghty. The film is based on the landmark experiment conducted at Stanford University in the summer of 1971, in which randomly-chosen 19 and 20-year-old students were divided into camps of either »
- Jeff Sneider
An additional 7 galas and 17 special presentations will be taking place at the 39th Toronto International Film Festival which will include the latest cinematic efforts of Sophie Barthes, Thomas McCarthy, Johnnie To, Michel Hazanavicius, Olivier Assayas, Benoît Jacquot, Lynn Shelton, Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne.
Here are some World Premiere highlights:
A former art prodigy and second generation petty thief buys his way out of prison to spend time with his ailing son. To do so, he must team up with his father for one last job to pay back the syndicate that arranged his release.
Max Simkin »
- Trevor Hogg
The Toronto International Film Festival announced more selections Tuesday for the upcoming 2014 edition of the annual awards season kick-off. The majority of the festival's program was announced last month, but this group includes intriguing world premieres from notable directors such as Todd McCarthy ("The Cobbler") and Gina Prince-Bythewood ("Beyond the Lights"). A number of the titles revealed have screened at other festivals including the underrated "Infinitely Polar Bear" and "Laggies" from Sundance as well as Cannes players "Two Days, One Night," "The Search" and "Clouds of Sils Maria." And yes, the presence of "Sils Maria," which is a favorite of this particular writer, means Kristen Stewart will likely hit one of the festival's many red carpets. As you'd expect for Toronto, the world premieres feature some big names including Josh Hutcherson and Benicio Del Toro in "Escobar: Paradise Lost," Jean Dujardin in "The Connection (La French)," Dustin Hoffman in "Boychoir, »
- Gregory Ellwood
This morning the Toronto Film Festival added several more films to their lineup including the world premiere of Thomas McCarthy's The Cobbler which stars Adam Sandler as a New York City cobbler who, disenchanted with the grind of daily life, stumbles upon a magical heirloom that allows him to step into the lives of his customers and see the world in a new way. The film co-stars Method Man, Ellen Barkin, Melonie Diaz, Dan Stevens, Steve Buscemi and Dustin Hoffman. Additionally, Sundance standouts Infinity Polar Bear and Laggies starring Keira Knightley and Chloe Grace Moretz were added to the Gala selection. Joining The Cobbler as new additions to the Special Presentations field include Olivier Assayas' Clouds of Sils Maria starring Kristen Stewart and Juliette Binoche and Two Days, One Night from Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne and starring Marion Cotillard. Both films made a splash at Cannes earlier this year, »
- Brad Brevet
The 2014 Toronto Film Festival, which begins Sept. 4, added seven Galas and 17 Special Presentations to its lineup, including a semi-serious Adam Sandler project from Tom McCarthy, the director of The Station Agent and The Visitor. In The Cobbler, Sandler plays a man who has the unique ability to walk in his customers’ shoes. The movie features Dustin Hoffman, who also stars in Boychoir, François Girard’s tale of an orphan’s steep learning curve at a prestigious music school. In Welcome to Me, Kristen Wiig plays a mentally unstable woman who wins the lottery and decides to sink her winnings into a talk show. »
- Jeff Labrecque
Expect to see a bevy of stars on the red carpet at the Toronto International Film Festival this September. Today, more Gala and Special Presentation titles were announced, with some star-studded projects in the mix. Now, Escobar: Paradise Lost, starring Benicio del Toro as the infamous drug lord, will have its world premiere at Tiff, as will The Forger, with John Travolta, Christopher Plummer and Tye Sheridan.
Other promising projects newly announced to be screening at Tiff are Win Win director Thomas McCarthy’s The Cobbler, which finds Adam Sandler taking on a rare dramatic role; Clouds of Sils Maria, which stars Juliette Binoche as an aging actress who confronts the young starlet (Chloe Grace Moretz) taking on the role that made her famous decades earlier; and Gemma Bovery, starring Gemma Arterton as the sensual object of a French food critic’s affection. Check out the full list of new »
- Isaac Feldberg
An orphaned 12-year-old boy is sent to prestigious music school where he struggles to join an elite group of world-class singers. No one expects this rebellious loner to succeed, least of all the school’s relentlessly-tough conductor who wages a battle of wills to bring out the boy’s extraordinary musical gift. Starring Dustin Hoffman, Kathy Bates, Josh Lucas, Kevin McHale, Eddie Izzard, Debra Winger and Garrett Wareing.
Marseille, 1975. Pierre Michel, a young police magistrate with a wife and children, has just been transferred to help crack down on the city’s organized crime. He decides to take on the French Connection, a Mafia-run operation that exports heroin all over the world. »
- Mike Fleming Jr
The Toronto International Film Festival added more than 100 features to its 2014 slate today, with pics starring Dustin Hoffman, Kristen Wiig, Benicio del Toro, Diane Keaton, John Travolta, Keira Knightley, Adam Sandler, Jennifer Connelly and Arnold Schwarzenegger among the two-dozen titles joining the Gala and Special Presentations programs.
Contemporary World Cinema adds 51 (22 world preems), City to City shines the spotlight on Seoul with eight pics (two world preems), and Wavelengths delivers 46 titles, including 13 features.
Gala world preems “Boychoir,” which marks the return of Quebec helmer Francois Girard (“Silk”) to the big screen and stars Hoffman as the tough conductor of a world-class music school, as well as Italian multi-hyphenate Andrea Di Stefano’s feature bow “Escobar: Paradise Lost,” starring del Toro as the notorious Colombian drug lord.
- Jennie Punter
While fans of Donna Tartt's beloved 1992 novel The Secret History have been waiting well over a decade for the long-stalled movie adaptation to get the green light, there was some good news this week as Warner Bros confirmed that they have acquired the film rights to her Pulitzer winner The Goldfinch.
Spanning two decades, the novel follows Theo Decker, who loses his mother at the age of 13 and is subsequently drawn into the criminal underworld through his possession of a valuable work of art.
If you're yet to read The Goldfinch, you may want to come back once you have as there will be Spoilers in the text below. Otherwise, read on for Digital Spy's dream cast...
Theo Decker (Ages 13-16)
The difficulty with casting the young Theo, whose perspective the first half of the book is told from, is that all the actors we have in mind will »
Mimi Steinbauer’s Radiant Films International has acquired world rights outside Italy to Italian director Saverio Costanzo’s Brooklyn-set suspence drama “Hungry Hearts,” which stars Adam Driver and hot Italian actress Alba Rohrwacher (“I Am Love”) as a couple expecting a baby whom the mother believes is an “indigo” child.
Produced by innovative Italo shingle Wildside, “Hungry Hearts” will be bowing at Venice, in competition, and subsequently having its North-American preem as a Special Presentation in Toronto. Rai Cinema’s 01 Distribution arm will release the film in Italy.
Prominent French distributor Bac Films has acquired rights for France.
Venice fest topper Alberto Barbera at a recent Rome press conference said he is hoping Adam Driver will take time from the shoot of “Star Wars: Episode VII,” in which Driver plays the main villain, to come tubthump “Hungry Hearts” on the Lido.
In “Hearts” Driver and Rohrwacher play a couple named »
- Nick Vivarelli
Ahead of the release of the original Dead Island video game, there was talk about a feature film adaptation, but we haven’t heard much since. With the recent announcement of Dead Island 2 at E3, it looks like there is renewed interest, as it has been announced that Occupant Entertainment has teamed up with Deep Silver for a Dead Island movie:
“Los Angeles, CA (July 30, 2014) – Occupant Entertainment and Deep Silver, the video game publishing label of Koch Media, announced today they are partnering to package, produce and finance a screen adaption of the popular hit video game franchise “Dead Island®”. Occupant plans to attach a filmmaker and fast track the project for a production start in Q1 of 2015.
Set on a tropical island resort, Dead Island revolves around a Zombie outbreak and has become one of the most-successful new video game IP’s in the last few years, selling over »
- Jonathan James
As a weary seventeen year old, budding writer Mary Shelley would begin writing what would become one of the most iconic gothic horror novels of all time, Frankenstein. Now THR is reporting that Elle Fanning has been cast in A Storm In the Clouds which will tell the story of the author (then Mary Wollstonecraft) and her engrossing love affair with poet Percy Shelley. From early indications it seems like it’s been pitched as a romantic period drama about young love rather than an in depth look into the inspiration and origins behind Frankenstein, although it’s highly likely that the film will tackle that subject to some extent.
Haifaa Al-Mansour (Wadjda) is on board as director with Ezra Miller (The Perks Of Being A Wallflower) rumoured to be in the running to play Percy. Al-Mansour is Saudi Arabia’s first female film director whose only other previous feature »
- Gavin Logan
Coinciding with its panel at Comic-Con yesterday, Lucasfilm Animation has released an extended sneak peek preview of the upcoming Star Wars Rebels, whcih includes scenes featuring the bad guys The Inquisitor and Agent Kallus, Jedi Padawan Ezra Miller, and droid duo R2-D2 and C-3Po; watch it below…
“Star Wars Rebels continues the epic tradition of the legendary Star Wars saga with all-new exciting, action-packed adventures. It is a dark time in the galaxy, as the evil Galactic Empire tightens its grip of power from world to world. As the series begins, Imperial forces have occupied a remote planet, ruling with an iron fist and ruining the lives of its people. But there are a select few who are brave enough to stand up against the endless Stormtroopers and Tie fighters of the Empire: the clever and motley crew of the starship Ghost. Together, this ragtag group will face threatening new villains, »
- Gary Collinson
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