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With Taxi Driver, American Gigolo, The Last Temptation of Christ and more, screenwriter Paul Schrader is responsible for a handful of classics. As a director though, he hasn’t made a great film since 2002’s Auto Focus. His last directorial effort, The Canyons, wasn’t half as interesting as the gossip surrounding the project. The same can almost be said for his latest picture, Dying of the Light, a movie that was taken away from Schrader — scored, mixed, and re-cut without him. The troubled production is apparent in the final product. Written by Schrader, Dying of the Light is centered around a veteran CIA agent, Evan Lake (Nicolas Cage), who’s displeased with his current position. The former field operative wasn’t meant to be stuck in an office, but his superiors are wary of his obsession that began 22 years prior with Lake being tortured by a terrorist, Muhammad Banir (Alexander Karim). The terrorist is presumed dead »
- Jack Giroux
Does Not Go Quietly: Schrader’s Latest Tampered Product
Veteran film director and screenwriter Paul Schrader just can’t seem to catch a break. Much like the fate of his 2003 Exorcist prequel, his latest directorial effort, Dying of the Light has also been reedited, scored and mixed without his approval, which led to a quiet movement of protest via social media where Schrader asked audiences to avoid this studio product, which also included the support of stars Nicolas Cage and Anton Yelchin. However, it’s just the kind of publicity that would perhaps enliven interest for a film that would otherwise have flown under the radar (and one thinks Cage should have asked audiences the same request of this year’s earlier release of Left Behind, instead). Rife with a series of awkward developments and bizarrely presented characters that are grimly determined to maintain an aura of stilted seriousness that »
- Nicholas Bell
Beyond the title’s reference (intentional or otherwise) to the Dylan Thomas poem, it’s hard to say that I was personally very aware of the new Nicolas Cage-led thriller Dying of the Light. In fact, it hasn’t been mentioned on the pages of this site since Cage joined the project in July 2013. But here it is now, a fully realized movie that’s hitting theaters on December 5. And look at that hat. To pass up an opportunity to show you that hat would be a disservice to Cage fans, disrespect to Dylan Thomas and an affront to humanity itself. But wait, there’s more. Written and directed by Paul Schrader (writer of Taxi Driver, director of Cat People, American Gigolo and more recently the Lindsay Lohan-led torture session The Canyons), Dying of the Light is a thriller about a CIA agent (Cage) who has been ordered to retire, only »
- Neil Miller
Last night at the Made in NY Media Center by Ifp, Paul Schrader had a conversation with Marc Schiller, as part of the latter’s Future State of Entertainment Speaker Series. Perhaps more than any other director of his generation, Schrader seems to have embraced the democratic technologies available to today’s filmmakers, between crowdsourcing on The Canyons and his recent intent to make a web series. Indeed, if the protest surrounding his latest film is any indication, he may be done with studios for the foreseeable future. Throughout the two hours, Schrader and Schiller covered a variety of topics, from new technologies to the phasing out of […] »
- Sarah Salovaara
Despite a weak run of recent films (The Canyons, Dying Of The Light, Dominion: Prequel To The Exorcist), Paul Schrader is still the guy who wrote Taxi Driver and Raging Bull. Amongst his better films as director, American Gigolo stands out. The 1980 film has had a lasting impact on films and now looks to be on the cusp of being a part of pop culture yet again. Jerry Bruckheimer, who served as producer on American Gigolo, is reportedly developing the film as a TV series. Bruckheimer would »
- Alex Maidy
A few years ago, hot off the back of Bronson and Valhalla Rising, Nicolas Winding Refn was in Hollywood developing a film with Harrison Ford. Disagreements over the ending meant neither Ford nor Winding Refn remained attached the film. The upside was that Ford gave the Dane some very strong pills for the flu he was suffering from. While under the influence of these tablets, he had a meeting with the star of The Notebook and Lars and the Real Girl, and because he was not firing on all cylinders, he ended the meeting early and asked the actor to drive him home. Flicking through radio stations on the drive back to his hotel, Winding Refn said that this is what he wanted to make a film about; a guy driving round La listening to electropop. »
- Oliver Davis
It is seldom that the director, actors, and executive producer of a film beg the public to refuse to go see their movie. But in the case of Dying of the Light, this is neither a publicity stunt nor a weird request: Paul Schrader, Nicolas Cage, Anton Yelchin, and Nicolas Winding Refn have an apparently good reason for wishing audiences to boycott their latest film.
According to a recent Facebook post by Dying of the Light helmer Paul Schrader, the film was “taken away from me, edited, scored, and mixed” without the director’s input. This has resulted in Schrader, Cage, Yelchin, and Winding Refn deciding to make their annoyance known, down to wearing “non-disparagement” t-shirts that indicate they’re not allowed to say anything against the film.
The producer, Gary Hirsch, has claimed that the film was taken away from Schrader after he refused to make what were considered »
- Lauren Humphries-Brooks
Paul Schrader, the Taxi Driver screenwriter and director of last year's Lindsey Lohan un-comeback The Canyons, has lost his battle to release his version of Dying of the Light. A trailer for the action thriller—which stars Nicolas Cage as a CIA veteran who's diagnosed with dementia but remains determined to hunt down the terrorist he thought he'd killed years ago—debuted on Wednesday, and it's officially slated for release on Dec. 5. The trailer proudly advertises itself as a Paul Schrader film, but he claims that the producers took the film away from him during the editing process. Despite being »
- Jeff Labrecque
We recently showed you the trailer for the troubled "Dying of the Light" thriller, starring Nicolas Cage and Anton Yelchin. The project is directed by Paul Schrader (The Canyons) and executive produced by Nicolas Winding Refn (director of "Drive" and "Only God Forgives"). Now comes word from Schrader that even though he wrote and directed the film, producers took it away from him by taking over the editing and scoring process. Refn has called this "artistic disrespect." Schrader, Refn, Cage and Yelchin are angry about what's going on, but are not legally allowed to say much, because they all signed a non-disparagement clause in their contracts. So to fight this, they have staged a silent protest by wearing shirts bearing the text of the contract. See photos below. "We lost the battle. 'Dying of the Light,' a film I wrote and directed, was taken away from me, re-edited, scored and mixed without my imput, »
Interesting story with this one. Paul Schrader, who wrote Taxi Driver (a classic) and recently conspired with Bret Easton Ellis to bring us The Canyons (by most counts not a classic) has a new movie coming out called Dying of the Light. Only he's not too thrilled about the way it turned out. Nor are his stars Nicolas Cage and Anton Yelchin. Nor is executive producer Nicolas Winding Refn (who was supposed to direct this a few years back with Harrison Ford in the lead role). Apparently Schrader was locked out of the editing room on the film and the movie that's being prepped for release is not his vision. Contractually he is forbidden to trash the movie given a non-disparagement clause in his contract, but he found a nifty way out of that and a way to get his message across. Hit the jump for the Dying of the »
- Evan Dickson
Underneath the bass drops and the electronic harmony of the garage music scene of 1990s Paris is melancholy and loneliness. The parties are bursting with verve and energy, but when the music stops, so does that joy. Hansen-Løve’s examination of a young DJ over the course of twenty years is warm and tender, an incredible look at the pros and cons of following your passion, allowing art to be your escape, and the joy of music.
Read Kyle’s full review here.
2. Goodbye to Language 3D | Directed by Jean-Luc Godard
While the audience is trapped by the kamera, the iconoclastic Godard is doing all he can to… not get us out exactly, but perhaps to stage a prison break. The goal in his game changing 3D film is to change the paradigm of what film is and can be, to make those prison bars into something entirely new. »
- Kyle Turner
Paul Schrader still is able to make movies. I do not understand how this can happen. Yes, I know he wrote Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, and The Last Temptation of Christ, but unless he is working with Martin Scorsese, every other thing he has made has ranged from subpar to genuinely awful, much like his last film The Canyons. You know, the one with Lindsay Lohan and James Deen. The one I and six other people saw. Well, today we are "treated" to a trailer for his latest film Dying of the Light, starring the man who is willing to take on any role: Nicolas Cage. Now, I like Nic Cage. I think he is a legitimately good actor. He just has a knack for picking the worst material possible. He had a bit of luck with this year's Joe, David Gordon Green's movie that came and went, but »
- Mike Shutt
There's a chance we just might get a break from the terrible films that Nicolas Cage has been making lately. Director Paul Schrader (writer of Raging Bull and Taxi Driver) is entering espionage thriller territory with Dying of the Light, and Cage isn't playing the kind of protagonist you'd expect. Complete with grayed hair, and a shaky, elderly demeanor, Cage plays an ailing veteran CIA agent who is hellbent on taking down a terrorist who has evaded him for years. This doesn't look half bad, but Shrader hasn't directed the best films throughout his career. At least it looks better than Cage's other recent work. Watch? Here's the first trailer for Paul Schrader's Dying of the Light, originally from Apple: Dying of the Light is written and directed Paul Schrader (director of The Canyons, Adam Resurrected and writer of Taxi Driver and Raging Bull). Nicolas Cage ignites a powder »
- Ethan Anderton
The star shared her ideas on how a good 'Mean Girls' sequel could be made.
It's not really a big surprise, when you think about it. Mean Girls was the high water mark in her cinematic career (up to this point. Who knows where it will go in the future?). After Mean Girls we got Herbie Fully Loaded, I Know Who Killed Me, The Canyons, and those are actually the highlights.
News: Lindsay Lohan Offered $1 Million Book Deal
In an interview with TimeOut London - in which Lindsay was promoting her theatrical debut in the David Mamet play Speed-The-Plow on London's West End– the 28-year-old actress was asked how she felt about Mean Girls having come out 10 years ago.
"People really love the movie: how do you »
Paul Schrader is no stranger to editing room battles. His travails during the production of "Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist" are well documented, and in the case of last year's "The Canyons," screenwriter Bret Easton Ellis described the film Schrader turned in versus the one his script envisioned, and a similar scenario seems to have occurred during production of the director's upcoming movie, "The Dying Of The Light." Penned by Schrader, the film follows a C.I.A. agent who is afflicted with blindness while on his last mission. At one point a few years ago, Nicolas Winding Refn was slated to direct, but the project collapsed when Harrison Ford (who was set to star alongside Channing Tatum) and the filmmaker couldn't come to terms about the fate of his character. The movie was revived recently with Schrader now directing his own script, Refn staying on as a producer, and »
- Kevin Jagernauth
In his Cannes Film Festival review of "Maps to the Stars," our own Drew McWeeny praised actress Julianne Moore for being "the one person in the film that truly gets the tone right." David Cronenberg's Hollywood satire isn't earning much love on the critical front for its lucid attack on the movie business, but it sounds like Moore, as a neurotic actress chasing a theoretically life-changing role, cuts through it with her usual contemplative bravado. As Drew puts it, she plays it "like a person walking a tightrope over a yawning pit of psychosis, her every emotion bubbling up and threatening to knock her off." Onlookers can get a taste for exactly what that means with three new clips from "Maps to the Stars," highlighting Moore's unhinged performance. In the first, Moore's Havana Segrand interrogates Agatha, played by Mia Wasikowska, with spine-tingling valleyspeak. In the second, Havana lets her »
- Matt Patches
The plot has thickened concerning the troubled Paul Schrader-Nicolas Cage thriller “Dying of the Light.” Responding to a Sept. 4 Variety story about alleged editing-room tensions between director Schrader and his producers, multiple sources, including Schrader and Nicolas Winding Refn, have now spoken publicly for the first time about the ongoing situation.
As earlier reported, Schrader shot the mid-budget indie (from his own script) in Romania and Australia earlier this year, with Cage starring as a veteran CIA agent who tracks an elusive terrorist while battling the debilitating effects of frontotemporal dementia. Schrader’s script, written as a spec in 2010, initially attracted the attention of Refn, who had hoped to direct a version of the movie starring Harrison Ford that eventually fell apart due to disagreements between director and actor. When the movie finally went into production with Schrader at the helm, the “Drive” director agreed to stay on as an executive producer. »
- Scott Foundas
Somewhere, Paul Schrader’s head must be spinning. Again.
Back in 2004, the iconoclastic “Taxi Driver” screenwriter found himself locked in a headline-grabbing battle for creative control when his “Dominion,” a prequel to William Friedkin’s Oscar-winning classic “The Exorcist,” was taken away from him by producers Morgan Creek and subsequently reshot, in its entirety, by director Renny Harlin.
Now, a mysterious Facebook page suggests that Schrader may be encountering similar troubles on his latest directing gig, “The Dying of the Light.” The page, entitled “Save Paul Schrader’s Dying of the Light,” includes a headshot of Schrader, alongside photos of stars Nicolas Cage, Anton Yelchin and Irene Jacob, as well as executive producer Nicolas Winding Refn.
- Scott Foundas
Welcome to Week 2 of Dread Central's exclusive on-set coverage from Atlanta for Creature Feature. In this blog Spirit World Films will be giving us glimpses of what goes into making movies on the fly, including first looks at the monsters soon to be taking over theaters.
Spirit World is the brainchild of three talented indie trendsetters: Chase Smith, Lance Paul and Edward Boss. These Southerners are turning the game upside down on what the true meaning of indie global films is.
With films budgeted at less than 20k, their combined multi “hat-wearing” skills are proving that you don’t need a giant budget nor a Hollywood soundstage to create cult classics.
Do clowns scare you? Have you ever looked at a scarecrow and wondered, »
- Creature Feature
Lindsay Lohan doesn't hear the words, "and the award goes to ..." very often ... she heard it Tuesday ... when she took home a trophy at a film festival in Italy. We kid you not.Lindsay was honored with the Biggest Comeback Award at the Ischia Global Film & Music Fest. She even showed up to collect her hardware and make a brief acceptance speech -- 'cuz you never know if that opportunity's ever gonna come around again. »
- TMZ Staff
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