5 items from 2016
Elle Fanning got her start in the business — and her SAG card — before the age of 3, when Jessie Nelson, the director of “I Am Sam,” starring 7-year-old Dakota Fanning and Sean Penn, needed someone to play Dakota’s sister in a flashback. Recruiting Elle for that role was a no-brainer. Fifteen years later, she’s emerged as one of the most exciting and consistently compelling actors of her generation, tackling indie dramas (“Somewhere,” “Ginger & Rosa”), blockbusters (“Maleficent”) … and whatever the heck “The Neon Demon” was.
Mark Williams & Sara Hirakawa for Variety
Fanning was only 16 when she shot that twisted, lurid film from Nicolas Winding Refn. If fact, she was too young to see it in theaters. “The Neon Demon” caused a divisive reaction from audiences when it premiered at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.
Fanning, now 18, is taking the response to the film with grace. “Some amazing movies have been torn apart [in Cannes],” she notes. »
- Jenelle Riley
(Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney)
Two-time Academy Award nominee Naomi Watts (Divergent series, The Impossible) and rising superstar Daisy Ridley (Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens) are in final negotiations to star in Ophelia, the highly-anticipated and dynamic reimagining of Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” focusing on the untold story of Ophelia’s (Ridley) tragic romance with the prince and her relationship with his mother Queen Gertrude (Watts), it was announced today by Covert Media’s CEO Paul Hanson.
To be directed by Claire McCarthy (The Waiting City), Ophelia is based on the award winning novel by Lisa Klein and adapted for the screen by the acclaimed and award-winning writer Semi Chellas (“Mad Men,” “The Eleventh Hour”).
“Ophelia is brimming with youth-fueled charisma, exploring the nature of true love and beauty, and I’m so excited to bring this fresh mythic spin to Hamlet from a female perspective, »
- Michelle McCue
Watts will play therapist Jean Holloway, a woman who begins to develop dangerous relationships with people who are involved in her patients’ lives, in the 10-episode season of the one-hour thriller. “Fifty Shades of Grey” helmer Sam Taylor-Johnson is directing the first two episodes of the series, created by Rubin. Rubin will exec produce with Watts, Liza Chasin, and Working Title’s Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and TV chief Andrew Stearn.
Watts is currently starring in the drama “Demolition” opposite Jake Gyllenhaal. She also recently filmed “About Ray” with Susan Sarandon and Elle Fanning; Gus Van Sant’s “Sea of Trees” with Matthew McConaughey; Colin Trevorrow’s “The Book of Henry”; and the psychological thriller “Shut In.” She will next star in Destin Daniel Cretton’s “The Glass Castle »
- Variety Staff
As previously reported, from Sierra Affinity the company pre-bought Ethan Hawke thriller 24 Hours To Live about an assassin who seeks redemption after being given a second chance at life.
Bloom’s crime-comedy Suburbicon, one of the hottest properties at the Efm, will see Clooney direct Matt Damon, Julianne Moore and Josh Brolin in the story of a quiet 1950’s family town called Suburbicon where the best and worst of humanity is reflected through the deeds of seemingly ordinary people.
When a home invasion turns deadly, a picture-perfect »
- email@example.com (Andreas Wiseman)
Tomboy, A Revenger’s Tale
Director: Walter Hill
Following a remarkable year in cinematic transgender representation with films like Sean Baker’s Tangerine, Tom Hooper’s The Danish Girl, and Gaby Dellal’s About Ray, not to mention prolific public figures such as Caitlyn Jenner and Laverne Cox maintaining notable visibility, positive depictions of the transgender community have marked 2015 as a watershed year. But not unlike the first wave queer theory which bitterly criticized historically negative depictions of Lgbt characters prior to the early 90s New Queer Cinema movement, Trans representation is under increased scrutiny, which results in severe cultural policing. One of the reasons we fail to see queer characters utilized in contemporary genre film is due to an exploitative history we’ve been unable to divorce ourselves from, those unseemly memories of demeaning cinematic representation. Comedy and horror were once the only ‘low »
- Nicholas Bell
5 items from 2016
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