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Tastes change. Not just those of the moviegoing public, who’ve gotten so wise to the sales pitches and story formulas that the town has had no choice but to adapt, propelling a self-aware superhero movie, “Guardians of the Galaxy,” above the likes of Cap and Spidey at the box office, and making sly, meta-minded directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller — responsible for ultra-blockbuster “The Lego Movie” and wink-wink sequel “22 Jump Street” — the hottest helming duo in town. But over time, critics’ tastes change, too.
In February, I relocated from Los Angeles to Paris, to take up my new post as Variety’s chief international film critic. As you can imagine, my diet underwent a radical upheaval — and I’m not talking about crepes and chocolate mousse, either. What I wasn’t prepared for was how swiftly my moviegoing palate might adapt to this new post.
I’d been raised on junk-food American fare, »
- Peter Debruge
John Malkovich is the human equivalent of Marmite: You either love him or hate him. The creators of “The Giacomo Variations,” a touring “chamber opera play,” are firmly in the former camp, having crafted a postmodern stage piece around the actor embodying himself and Giacomo Casanova, melded into various Lorenzo da Ponte characters from Mozart’s operas. It’s clever as a concept, with obvious Don Giovanni-Casanova parallels, yet “Casanova Variations,” the film adaptation by the play’s author, Michael Sturminger, is so full of its own forced charm that only diehard Marmite fans, like producers Paulo Branco and Ulrich Seidl, will feel enriched. Europe will be more welcoming than the States.
Since audiences are meant to get the in-jokes, it helps if viewers are conversant not just with the Mozart operas and Casanova’s memoir “Histoire de ma vie,” but also “Dangerous Liaisons” and “Being John Malkovich. »
- Jay Weissberg
And that’s it. Somehow – although god knows how – X Factor will have to stumble on without Stevi. I don’t know how any of us will cope.
Anyway, thanks for hanging out with me this weekend. I think it’s clear that I needed all the help I could get. If you fancy following me on Twitter, I’m @StuHeritage. Ok! We made it! The end’s in sight! We can do this! Only The Young!
And yet, in Stevi’s final moments, all I can notice is that he hasn’t done his shirt up properly. What a legacy.
But also, Stevi’s gone. This liveblog has absolutely no power whatsoever. I don’t know about you, but I’m quite relieved. »
- Stuart Heritage
Oscar-nominated writer Jose Rivera (The Motorcycle Diaries) has been tasked with writing the screenplay, which will be a modern-day adaptation based on the Jack London novel. The 1991 movie White Fang was set at the turn of the 20th Century, centering on a young Alaskan man (Ethan Hawke) who befriends a wolf dog during the Gold Rush, as they get into a number of adventures involving starving wolves, grizzly bears, dog fighters and Aboriginal settlers. That adventure spawned the 1994 sequel White Fang 2: Myth of the White Wolf.
The original novel was set in Canada's Yukon Territory, and told through the perspective of the wolf dog and his story of survival. The title animal's rescue from dogfighters by a young man was only »
A full 23 years has passed since The Walt Disney Company last adapted Jack London's classic story White Fang, and apparently that's just enough time for the studio to start moving forward on a remake. The Hollywood Reporter has the news about the developing adaptation,and says that Disney has already found a pair of talented filmmakers to move the project forward. According to the report, Jose Rivera, who earned an Academy Award nomination in 2004 for his screenplay The Motorcycle Diaries, has been tapped to pen the script for the movie, and cinematographer Lance Acord will be making his directorial debut with the film. While that may sound like he's a newbie, the truth is that he's partially responsible for some of incredibly beautiful and visually fantastic films. He's best known for his collaborations with Spike Jonze, having worked as the Director of Photography on Being John Malkovich, Adaptation and »
Jose Rivera ("The Motorcycle Diaries") has been hired to pen the new version on which award-winning cinematographer Lance Acord ("Being John Malkovich," "Lost in Translation") will make his feature directorial debut.
Disney previously adapted the story in 1991, turning it into a film about a young man (Ethan Hawke) in Alaska during the turn-of-the-20th-century Gold Rush who comes to befriend a wolf dog during his adventures.
The new film is expected to be more loyal to London's more ambitious book which was set in the Yukon Territory and followed the life of the wild wolf dog from the animal's point of view.
It is also a violent story of survival, so no word on how 'gritty' Disney plans to go with the material.
Source: THR »
- Garth Franklin
Disney is having another bite at White Fang. The studio is developing a new adaptation of the classic Jack London story, which was previously tackled with its 1991 adventure movie that starred Ethan Hawke. Jose Rivera, who was nominated for an Oscar for penning the 2004 movie The Motorcycle Diaries, has been hired to write the new version, and award-winning cinematographer Lance Acord is attached to make his feature directorial debut. Acord is known for working with Spike Jonze on films such as Being John Malkovich, Adaptation and Where the Wild Things Are. The 1991 movie told the story of
- Borys Kit
It's that time of year again and it's time to update the list for the second half of 2014 as Barnes & Noble has just kicked off their 50% off Criterion sale and as impossible a task as it is to cut things down to just a few titles, I have done my best to break Criterion's titles down into a few categories. Hopefully those looking for box sets, specific directors or what I think are absolute musts will find this makes things a little bit easier. Let's get to it... First Picks I was given the Zatoichi collection for Christmas last year and being a collection that holds 25 films and another disc full of supplementary material it is the absolute definition of a must buy when it comes to the Criterion Collection. It is, once again, on sale for $112.49, half off the Msrp of $224.99, and worth every penny. I spent the entire year going through it. »
- Brad Brevet
As incredibly bizarre and unique as Spike Jonze's Being John Malkovich is, the reality is that it was almost much, much weirder. Details about the conclusion of an earlier script have come to light online, and to call it fascinating is an extreme understatement. This new Being John Malkovich early script info has surfaced thanks to Badass Digest, which has a fully detailed breakdown of the movie's original ending in all its weirdo glory. Beginning at about the start of the third act - which has Craig Schwartz (John Cusack) lock his wife, Lotte (Cameron Diaz), in a chimpanzee cage and leave with Maxine (Catherine Keener) to permanently take over John Malkovich's body. The big change, however, is that Craig doesn't turn Malkovich into a great puppeteer, but instead publicizes that Malkovich is a puppet and becomes famous as his controller. He gets his own show in Las Vegas, »
So okay. Main Madhuri Dixit Banna Chahti Hoon didn't feature the iconic actress. Still, there is nothing unusual about an actor playing himself. Dharmendra did it in Hrishikesh Mukherjee's Guddi and in Being John Malkovich, the actor whom the film was named after played himself. The Big B made an appearance as himself in Sanjay Dayma's Ramji Londonwale. What sets Akshay Kumar's appearance apart is the amount of self-directed humour that the actor has added to the role of 'Akshay Kumar in director Abhishek Sharma's The Shaukeens. Says a source from the film's team, "Throughout the film Akshay Kumar takes potshots at himself and his image of a 'Khiladi' star who has a reputation of not giving serious performances. Akshay makes fun of his non-actor's image by showing a 'serious' Bengali director mocking him and telling him he will never be taken seriously as an actor. »
In last weeks terrifying YouTube cull, Ella, Sarah and Steven were fired by the ruthless Alan. Three of them! How many suffered his wrath this week? Julia Raeside cowered behind the sofa
Next week they have to design a board game which we can all agree is a vital skill for anyone about to launch a new business venture. Good Grief. No its fine, were on board right?
Ill be here next week. Because how could I not be? Will you come too? I hope you do. Im now diving south to the comments.
Yes, it is actually going to be...Oh, its Jemma. Jemma is fired. Jemma says thank you. Jemma goes and sits on the sofa outside in an utterly impassive way.
In the back of the taxi she continues to denigrate herself even though she seems like a much nicer, lest boastful person »
- Julia Raeside
Before he detailed the romance between a man and an Os, or took you where the Wild Things were, Spike Jonze decided to get into the head of John Malkovich. Time flies, but it has been 15 years since the brilliant and bizarre "Being John Malkovich" hit theaters, so today we're going to take you behind the scenes. Featuring longitme collaborator Lance Bangs, and cast members John Cusack, Catherine Keener, Cameron Diaz, and, of course, John Malkovich, the footage is a bit scattershot, but gives a sense of what shooting the oddball, Charlie Kaufman-penned picture was like, not only for those in front of the camera, but for the crew too. It's actually a pretty great dip into what it took to get inside Malkovich's brain, at least on set, and if you're of the film and filmmakers, it's worth perusing. Check it out below, along with a couple of extras, »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Intruders heats up considerably in its second episode, which is better-paced and starting to intrigue...
This review contains spoilers.
1.2 And Here... You Must Listen
Previously on Intruders, we met a few odd characters, a couple of sinister ones, and were beaten over the head with exposition once or twice. Immortality: not just for vampires any more. A secret sect has discovered a way to cram their souls into the bodies of others. Very Being John Malkovich. What the series premiere seemed to imply is that the soul cramming happens every nine years, on the victim’s birthday (or maybe nine years after the last host died?). The process is facilitated by Richard and Frank Shepherd. How it is done or why certain victims are picked has not yet been revealed.
Does that make the perpetrators some kind of psychic parasites? Is the host soul killed or forced into submission? Can »
Into the Woods: Heading to theaters on December 25, Into the Woods is an ambitious stage-to-screen adaptation featuring a plethora of familiar storybook characters. New photos from the musical showcase Johnny Depp (as a wolf), Anna Kendrick (as Cinderella), Emily Blunt (as the Baker's Wife), and Meryl Streep (as a witch), all looking quite colorful. [EW.com] I.Q. 83: Charlie Kaufman, known for offbeat movies (Being John Malkovich, Adaptation), will next tackle a rewrite of I.Q. 83, based on a 1978 novel by Arthur Herzog. Steve Carell is set to star as the leader of a group of scientists who inadvertently unleash a virus that steadily lowers the intelligence of its victims. Kaufman is planning a satirical version of the straightforward novel...
- Peter Martin
After starring in dumb comedies like Dinner for Schmucks, Evan Almighty and most recently Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible No Good Very Long Title, it sounds like Steve Carell has the potential to star in a smart comedy about getting dumber. Deadline reports Paramount Pictures has hired Charlie Kaufman (Being John Malkovich, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) to do a page one rewrite of I.Q. 83, an adaptation of the 1978 sci-fi novel of the same name by Arthur Herzog, being developed for Steve Carell to lead. While the sci-fi was written as a serious story, the film adaptation will be a satire like Dr. Strangelove. The story would follow Carell as Dr. James Healey, a man who led a group of scientists to conduct a DNA experiment by unleashing an airborne virus that progressively lowers the Iq of those who have contracted it (you know, like reality television). Suddenly »
- Ethan Anderton
Carell will play Dr James Healey, the head of a group of scientists whose experimental virus is accidentally unleashed on the population.
Those infected find their IQs progressively dropping, leading to a race against time to find a cure before the scientists no longer have the mental capacity to do so.
Herzog - a political speechwriter in the 1960s - published the book in 1978.
A director is yet to be secured for the project.
It looks like Charlie Kaufman and Steve Carell may work together after all. Carell was originally set to star in the Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind scribe’s excellent-sounding musical Frank or Francis, but the feature was postponed due to lack of financing. He then turned his attention to the FX pilot How and Why, only to see the network pass on picking it up to series earlier this year. Now Kaufman has been tapped to rewrite a star vehicle for Carell, and it sounds kind of great. The Adaptation. and Being John Malkovich screenwriter will pen an adaptation of Arthur Herzog’s science-fiction novel Iq 83, which revolves around the outbreak of a disease that is slowly making everyone dumber. More after the jump. Deadline reports that Paramount has hired Kaufman to do a page one rewrite of Iq 83, which is being developed as a star vehicle for Carell. »
- Adam Chitwood
Steve Carell has been attached for awhile to headline an adaptation of Arthur Herzog's 1978 science fiction novel, Iq 83. Today, however, the big screen take on the high concept tale is officially getting a rewrite from none other than Charlie Kaufman, the screenwriter behind films like Being John Malkovich, Adaptation, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Synecdoche, New York. Deadline has the news, reporting that Kaufman will be doing a page one rewrite. »
Florence Foster Jenkins was the William Hung of the early 1900s. An objectively awful opera singer convinced of her own melodious quality, Jenkins concertized across New York City at her wealthy family’s expense. People couldn’t look away. Staging elaborate shows in opulent costumes, Jenkins sang Vivaldi and Strauss for audiences keeling over from disbelief. Her earnest brand of cacophony became so revered, she was invited to perform at Carnegie Hall in 1944, at the age of 76. Sound like the makings for a biopic? Well, get ready for Meryl Streep as Florence Foster Jenkins. Deadline reports that the “Iron Lady” Best Actress-winner will star alongside Hugh Grant in “Florence,” a dramatization of the New York heiress’ odd musical career. Though its high art trashiness sounds like the makings of a John Waters film, “Philomena” director Stephen Frears will helm the feature. Nicholas Martin (BBC's "The Indian Doctor”) wrote the script. »
- Matt Patches
Philomena director Stephen Frears is reteaming with Pathé for another project about an eponymous real-life female protagonist. Currently in pre-production, Florence is the true story of Florence Foster Jenkins, a New York heiress and socialite who coveted a career as a great opera singer, but who lacked any real ability. Meryl Streep is attached to play the title role with Hugh Grant also attached for the role of her partner and manager St Clair Bayfield. Bayfield was an aristocratic English actor who was determined to protect Florence from the truth that while the voice she heard in her head was beautiful, to everyone else it was hilariously awful.
Baz Bamigboye at the Daily Mail first tipped the news and Pathé International, which will begin sales at the AFM next month, has now confirmed details. The film has a script by Nicholas Martin which will tell Foster Jenkins’ story through to »
- Nancy Tartaglione
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