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Bold’s Michel Litvak and Matthew Rhodes will produce with Waugh and Participant Media’s Jonathan King, who developed the project. Bold’s Gary Michael Walters will exec produce with Participant topper Jeff Skoll.
“Shot Caller” follows a newly released prison gangster who’s forced by the leaders of his gang to orchestrate a major crime with a brutal rival gang in Southern California.
Waugh, who broke into the business as a stuntman, wrote and directed “Snitch” and “Felon.” He went undercover as a volunteer parole agent in California to research prison gangs for his “Shot Caller” script.
“No one knew I was a filmmaker,” said Waugh. “They just saw me as a rookie cop, so nothing was censored. What I quickly learned »
- Dave McNary
Building its credentials for a berth at Cannes or another major fest, Pablo Aguero’s “Eva No Duerme” (Eva Doesn’t Sleep), a chronicle of the 25-year odyssey of Eva Peron’s embalmed corpse, took top honors at France’s Toulouse CineLatino Festival’s Films in Progress, which also prized “From Afar,” Venezuelan Lorenzo Vigas’ directorial debut.
A pics-in-post showcase, taking place twice-a-year at Toulouse and San Sebastian, the 27th Films in Progress ran March 26-27.
Aguero’s third feature, after his debut, “Salamandra,” screened at Cannes’ 2008 Directors’ Fortnight and “77 Doronship” at the 15th Films in Progress and San Sebastian’s New Directors section, “Eva No Duerme” won both the Toulouse Films in Progress Prize and the Cine Plus Films in Progress Special Prize:
“Far Away” took awards from Mactari and Titra Tvs, Europa Distribution, the International Confederation of Art Cinemas (Cicae) and the Cannes Festival’s Producers’ Network.
- John Hopewell
Universal Pictures is pushing ahead with its plans for a new remake of Scarface, with The Hollywood Reporter revealing that Straight Outta Compton screenwriter Jonathan Herman has signed on to pen a new draft of the script.
The new film is set to blend elements of the original 1932 version alongside the 1983 remake, and will explore an immigrant’s rise in the criminal underworld in present day Los Angeles. Chilean filmmaker Pablo Larrain (No, Tony Manero) is set to direct, while both Paul Attanasio (Donnie Brasco) and David Ayer (Fury) have previously contributed to the script.
- Gary Collinson
The latest Scarface remake lands a fresh writer, as Universal presses on with the project...
It's not a new revelation that a remake of Scarface is in the works in the Hollywood system, but it is a project we'd heard little of in recent times. We'd sort of thought that this one had died a quiet death.
But it hasn't. Accepting that Brian De Palma's 1983 Scarface, starring Al Pacino, was in itself a remake of Howard Hawks' 1932 film, there's another take on the story coming. This one will relocate events to present day, centring on a Mexican character in Los Angeles. The lead character will still be called Tony, but, apparently, will have a different surname this time.
Universal Pictures has brought on Straight Outta Compton screenwriter Jonathan Herman to rewrite the script for their Scarface remake. We haven't heard anything about the remake since March 2014, when the project brought on director Pablo Larraín (No). The screenplay was previously worked on by Paul Attanasio (The Fighter) and David Ayer (Suicide Squad).
The story will follow a criminal's rise through the Los Angeles criminal underworld, much like the first two movies, but with a different setting. The original 1932 Scarface starring Paul Muni as Tony Camonte was set in Chicago, while the 1983 Scarface remake followed Al Pacino's Tony Montana as he rose to become one of Miami's most feared criminal leaders. No other details about this new version were given, aside from the Los Angeles setting.
Gangster classic Scarface is getting a reboot over at Universal, and audiences are today one step closer to again saying hello to Tony Montana’s little friend now that the studio has tapped Straight Outta Compton screenwriter Jonathan Herman to script.
Herman will be working from previous drafts by Paul Attanasio and Suicide Squad director David Ayer, both of whom approached the remake as a fresh, new take on the immigrant-centric story. Though the 1983 pic, also from Universal, focused on Cuban refugee Tony Montana (Al Pacino), who ended up in 1980s Miami with nothing but fought his way to the top of a drug empire, the new Scarface has been moved to Los Angeles in hopes of setting the film apart. Once again, though, the remake will tell the story of an immigrant who became a criminal kingpin.
Universal has been relying on Herman heavily of late. In addition to »
- Isaac Feldberg
Disney has become well aware that even releasing just the tiniest hint of news about Star Wars is enough to send the blogs into a feeding frenzy. One of those bad habits is studios staking a claim on a calendar date far out in the future. And they’ve now revealed that the release date for Star Wars: Episode VIII will be May 26, 2017. Rian Johnson has also officially been confirmed to direct the film, with Josh Trank in line to direct yet another standalone film. No word on a subtitle for Episode VIII just yet, but one of the other unknown, nebulous Star Wars projects does; the first of the Star Wars spinoffs starring Felicity Jones is now known as Rogue One. I’ll leave that to you in the interwebs to figure out what that vague title actually refers to.
After making two of this generation’s defining war films, »
- Brian Welk
Madrid – Pablo Aguero’s awaited Gael Garcia Bernal starrer “Eva no duerme” and Sebastian Brahm’s “Sex Life of Plants,” his follow-up to “Roman’s Circuit,” will play at France’s Toulouse CineLatino Festival’s Films in Progress, a traditional springboard for selection at Cannes or major fests beyond.
A pix-in-post showcase, the 27th Films in Progress runs March 26-27.
Produced by Paris-based Jba Production, whose credits include movies by Rithy Panh, Tsai Ming-liang and Alice Rohrwacher, “Eva” is co-produced by Madrid’s Tornasol Films and Buenos Aires’ Haddock Films, the companies behind Juan Jose Campanella’s Oscar winning “The Secret in the Eyes.”
Directed by Argentine’s Aguero (“Salamandra,” “77 Doronship”), it is inspired by the incredible, but true, 25-year-odyssey of Evita Peron’s embalmed corpse, that was, in just one episode, buried in secret in Italy for 15 years with the connivance of the Pope, as her exquisite if somewhat »
- John Hopewell
The Doha Film Institute’s new Qumra event kicks off today in Doha, with a focus on mentoring emerging filmmakers.
The programme includes industry-focused masterclasses from Gael Garcia Bernal, Cristian Mungiu, Abderrahamane Sissako, Danis Tanovic and Elia Suleiman (who also serves as the event’s artistic advisor). Suleiman’s masterclass replaces a planned talk with Leila Hatami, who had to cancel her trip to Doha.
More than 100 international industry attendees are connecting with delegates from 29 projects at various stages of production (all of the projects have backing in part from Dfi).
Attending industry – to name just a few — include Toronto’s Cameron Bailey, Wild Bunch’s Vincent Maravel, Image Nation Abu Dhabi’s Tala Al Asmani, Gulf Film’s Selim El Azar, Urban Distribution’s Frederic Corvez, the Danish Film Institute’s Henrik Bo Nielsen, Cannes Critics’ Week’s Remi Bonhomme, script consultant Claire Dobbin, Locarno’s Nadia Dresti, Busan’s Kim Ji-Seok, filmmaker [link=nm »
- email@example.com (Wendy Mitchell)
Underscoring the rapid consolidation of top-echelon Brazilian producers as diversified multi-project film-tv production houses, Sao Paulo’s o2 Filmes, whose credits include Fernando Meirelles’ “City of God” and “The Constant Gardner” and Stephen Daldry’s “Trash,” has eight TV fiction dramas in development, including half hour comedy “The Friends of My Baby” and the corruption-themed “Matriarca.”
Meirelles began his career working in TV. But the size of O2 Filmes’ current development slate suggests that Brazil’s top companies are taking the opportunities for TV production based out of Brazil very seriously indeed.
In early development, “The Friends of My Baby” is a comedy about a single father and a baby. Gnt, Brazil’s most prominent femme-targeting cable TV channel and one of the jewels in the crown of Globosat, Globo’s giant pay TV operator, has acquired Brazilian rights.
“Matriarca” is a “dark humored” fiction drama about Brazil’s political classes and corruption, »
- John Hopewell
Jupiter Ascending has launched in Australia with $2 million in four days on 415 screens, one of the more respectable debuts for the sci-fi action-adventure.
That's a long way short of recouping the production cost reported to be between $175 million and $205 million, and the hefty P&A bill.
So Jupiter Ascending is shaping as yet another misfire for siblings Andy and Lana Wachowski following WB/Vrp.s Speed Racer ($120 million budget, $93.9 million in global B.O.) and the independently-financed Cloud Atlas ($100 million cost, $130.5 million B.O.).
Pro-rata, the Australian opening is slightly ahead of the $18.4 million Us debut, to the surprise of some exhibitors. Wallis Cinemas program manager Bob Parr tells If, .I didn.t expect that at all because of the Us result, »
- Don Groves
If the biggest names in the recent Berlin Film Festival lineup largely disappointed with their shiny, starry films, there were more than a handful of filmmakers who totally justified, or exceeded, our prior fandom. Chief among these was Pablo Larrain, the Chilean director of "Post Mortem" and "No," who showed up almost unheralded with his latest film, "The Club" (A grade review here), which, along with Patricio Guzman's extraordinary "The Pearl Button" made this a banner Berlinale for Chile. "The Club" is a mordant, excoriating, bitter indictment of the culture of concealment in the Catholic Church, featuring no big stars, set in a depressed crummy seaside town, painted in drab colors and featuring quite possibly the most horrifically detailed and borderline-unlistenable tirade about clerical child sex abuse ever committed to film. Needless to say, it's absolutely terrific. With the film only having just premiered, we got to »
- Jessica Kiang
Madrid — Described by Variety’s Scott Foundas as “a transporting, hypnotically beautiful debut feature” and “downright Herzogian (far more Herzogian than Herzog’s own ‘Queen of the Desert’),” Guatemalan Jayro Bustamante’s Berlin competition entry “Ixacanul” has broken out to major territory sales, with many more deals on the way.
From its first screening at Berlin – sales agent Film Factory opted not to send out screeners or links before Berlin –
“Icxanul” has closed Italy and Japan, both with significant indie distributors: Andrea Occhipinti’s Lucky Red and Japan’s Gaga Communications. Arp Selection, one of France’s major art film distributors, took distribution »
- John Hopewell
The film captures life in contemporary Iran through interactions with passengers in a Tehran cab. Taxi is Panahi’s third feature since the Iranian authorities banned him from making films at the end of 2010, following This is Not a Film and Closed Curtain, which was in competition in Berlin 2013.
Panahi, who was also banned from travelling and giving interviews in 2010 sentence, was not able to travel to Berlin for the premiere of his film.
This time around, Panahi has circumvented the ban by turning a yellow cab into a mobile film studio with a camera placed on the dashboard. As the cab drives through the vibrant and colourful streets of Tehran, it picks up »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Michael Rosser)
With most of the Berlin Film Festival competition titles now screened, there are some standouts. But sentiment on the ground here is that it’s the out of competition titles that have clearer crossover appeal. That’s a switch from last year when the main section went user-friendly. In 2014, The Grand Budapest Hotel opened the festival to raves, and Boyhood won hearts a few days later. Ultimately, it was Chinese pic Black Coal, Thin Ice that was the top prize-winner, but Boyhood’s Richard Linklater was named Best Director, while Budapest Hotel scooped the Grand Jury Silver Bear. And just look where those films are now.
Among the competition films that are high on festgoers’ lists here thus far is Pablo Larrain’s exiled priests tale El Club. Larrain’s No was nominated for a Foreign Language Oscar in 2013 and this current film has a lot of people talking, although »
- Nancy Tartaglione
Berlin – Valdivia’s Jirafa – Monday’s winner of the Berlinale’s Co-production Market’s Arte International Prize for Marcela Said’s “Small Talk” – is teaming with Chilean writer-director Alejandro Almendras Fernandez, for “Aquí no ha pasado nada” (Much Ado About Nothing’).
Produced by Jirafa’s Augusto Matte and inspired by a political scandal which outraged Chile, “Much Ado” is set for an April shoot, confirming it as Almendras Fernandez’s follow-up to the career milestone “To Kill a Man,” which won the 2014 Sundance World Cinema Grand Jury Prize and confirmed a move by Almendras Fernandez from exquisite art film towards broader audience filmmaking.
Announced Tuesday to Variety at Berlin, “Much Ado,” like “Small Talk” or Pablo Larrain’s Berlinale competition player “The Club,” forms part of what could be called as building cinema of discrepancy in Latin America: Films which questions the socioeconomic limits to real democratic change after the »
- John Hopewell
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Balikbayan #1 Memories of Overdevelopment Redux III
How silly is it that, as cinephiles, our happiness is so bound up with the films we watch? My mood fluctuates at festivals, often based on what film I watched last. One recent morning exemplified this. You and I went to see the press screening of Chilean director Pablo Larraín’s new film, The Club. I was keen on this one as his last film, No (2012), was superb (I recall the mysterious Celluloid Liberation Front wrote on it for us from Cannes). Unfortunately, this film was entirely different, not just in style, but in its relationship to its subject matter, its characters, the world. Where No was invested in people, The Club takes on a very heavy topic with a level of disdain that left me feeling cold. The film is about a group of priests, »
- Adam Cook
The 2015 Oscar race for best foreign language may be among the most keenly contested of this year's Academy Awards, but in Pablo Larraín's superbly tough parable of Catholic faith, guilt, sin and redemption "The Club" we already have a very early front-runner for the next year's race. This tart, smart and consistently surprising blend of ultra-serious material and darkly comic execution looks set to catapult director and co-writer Larraín – whose three previous films addressed the impact on Chile of dictator Augusto Pinochet - into the front rank of international arthouse filmmakers. Larraín's 2006 debut "Fuga" made few international waves, but his loose trilogy — comprised of "Tony Manero," "Post Mortem" and "No" — earned significant critical acclaim, even if they now appear, in retrospect, as an extended bout of throat-clearing as prelude to this gem. Entirely set in a remote, picturesque coastal »
- Neil Young
Pablo Larraín’s terrific fifth movie is the initially oddball, increasingly chilling story of greyhound-fancying ministers on a wind-whipped island
In three of his films to date with the Chilean director Pablo Larraín, the great, grey-faced actor Alfredo Castro has starred as a Travolta-obsessed serial killer (in Tony Manero), a mortician who buries alive the woman he loves (Post Mortem) and a conniving advertising executive working to get Pinochet re-elected (No). Surely he’s due to play someone sympathetic by now — a hit-and-run driver, say, or even an estate agent?
No such luck. In Larraín’s new picture, The Club, Castro is one of a group of weatherbeaten priests who live together in a house, where they are marshalled and protected by a busybody housekeeper. So far, so Father Ted. But aside from the priests’ oddball obsession with the greyhound that they race at local meets, any laughter here is of the strangulated sort. »
- Ryan Gilbey
A series of controlled demolitions laid with meticulous care to undermine and ultimately explode the rottenness of institutional authority, particularly that of the Catholic church, Pablo Larrain's "The Club" burst onto the screen this morning in Berlin, and still now, debris rains down all around. A bold, blunt, yet clinically intelligent film that provokes as much for its dark humor as for its righteous outrage, it's all at once a gripping thriller, an incendiary social critique and a mordant moral fable. The confidence on display from Larrain, who broadens the purview of his already excellent "Pinochet Trilogy" ("Tony Manero," "Post Mortem," "No") is impossible to overstate: this film is his finest hour to date. Five men and one woman live in a house in a run-down coastal town in Chile. The men keep a greyhound, Rayo, training him on the beach, and finally, entering him in a local race, »
- Jessica Kiang
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