It isn’t surprising that a producer as knowledgeable as Selznick often ran to the services of the two major champions of “slice of cake” cinema and strong sequences, Hitchcock (Rebecca, Spellbound, Notorious, The Paradine Case) and Vidor (Bird of Paradise, Duel in the Sun, Light’s Diamond Jubilee, even Ruby Gentry), who, without a doubt, made the best films for Selznick.
Love Never Dies, Wild Oranges, Hallelujah, Our Daily Bread, Comrade X, Duel in the Sun, The Fountainhead, Ruby Gentry and their terrific denouements once made me write that Vidor was a director of film endings. No doubt I was exaggerating, but it isn’t for nothing that he hesitated for a long time between several different endings for The Crowd. I was also exaggerating because
First of all, the Hollywood version of Le dîner de cons will be titled Dinner for Schmucks and directed by Jay Roach (Meet the Fockers). As for the script, it's described like this on IMDb: "An extraordinarily stupid man possesses the ability to ruin the life of anyone who spends more than a few minutes in his company." Moreover, the cast will include Paul Rudd, Steve Carell,
According to Variety, Spyglass Entertainment, Paramount Pictures and DreamWorks will team up to develop the film, with Spyglass and Paramount providing the majority of the budget.
Steve Carell and Paul Rudd are on board to star in the project, in which a bunch of friends organize a weekly dinner to which they invite the dumbest people they can find.
The trade says the film will most likely start principal photography in October. "Schmucks" will mark Roach's first big-screen project since 2004's "Meet the Fockers."
Most recently, the filmmaker received a Emmy for his television movie "Recount."
The original "Diner de cons" was directed by Francis Veber and turned into a huge hit. The comedy starred Thierry Lhermitte, Jacques Villeret, Francis Huster and Daniel Prévost. Very funny movie indeed.
If the picture, to be released this spring by Lions Gate, doesn't hit the commercial heights of his previous efforts, it will only be because the glory days of French comedies have long passed. The film was recently showcased at the Miami Film Festival, where it was a great success if the nonstop audience laughter was any indication.
"The Dinner Game" uses the classic formula employed by Veber many times in which an unlikely pair of protagonists are thrown together to great comic effect. The duo here is comprised of Pierre (Thierry Lhermitte), a handsome and successful publishing executive with a great apartment featuring a striking view of the Eiffel Tower, a beautiful wife and enough yuppie accoutrements to fill an issue of Vanity Fair; and Pignon (Jacques Villeret), a buffoonish, short, stocky accountant working for the Financial Ministry whose hobby is recreating historical monuments with matchsticks.
Pierre also has a hobby, a rather cruel pastime in which he and his friends get together for parties and engage in a competition in which they try to procure the most idiotic dinner guest imaginable; the one who produces the most laughable contestant is the victor, and the hapless guests have no idea that they are being displayed as objects of humiliation. With Pignon, Pierre feels confident that he has found a real winner.
Unfortunately, they never get to the dinner. Pierre throws out his back and winds up trapped in his apartment, with Pignon at his side. In short order, Pignon, whose actions always seems to produce disastrous circumstances, virtually wrecks his new friend's life, destroying his relationship with his wife, inviting an audit from a rapacious fellow tax inspector and reducing Pierre to a physical and emotional wreck.
This systematic destruction is hilariously rendered in Veber's farce, which reveals its stage origins by its virtual confinement to one setting. Although the dialogue is always witty, what truly produces the laughter are the uproarious characterizations and the expert performances by the two leads. Villeret has the meatier role, and runs with it; his Pignon is a brilliant comic creation who is as endearing as he is silly. Lhermitte, though he mostly plays straight man to his outrageous co-star, is no less skillful, garnering huge laughs with a series of perfectly calibrated slow burns.
As the bulldog tax auditor who turns out to have problems of his own, Daniel Prevost nearly steals the film. Among the film's comic highlights are a dialogue centering on the first name "Just" that plays like a hilarious variation on the classic "Who's on First?" routine, and an adorable, animated opening credit sequence.
Although the material is strictly lightweight and trivial, "The Dinner Game" is a wonderfully entertaining and briskly paced comedy that comes as a blessed relief from the angst displayed in so many recent French imports. As with many of its creator's previous hits, the remake rights will no doubt be snatched up by a Hollywood studio, followed by the inevitable charmless American version.
THE DINNER GAME
Lions Gate Films
Director-writer: Francis Veber
Producers: Gaumont International, Alain Poire
Co-Producers: EFVE, TFI Films Prods., with the participation of TPS Cinema
Director of photography: Luciano Tovoli
Editor: Georges Klotz
Sets: Hugues Tissandier
Francois Pignon: Jacques Villeret
Pierre Brochant: Thierry Lhermitte
Just Leblanc: Francis Huster
Cheval: Daniel Prevost
Christine: Alexandra Vandernoot
Marlene: Catherine Frot
Running time -- 90 minutes
No MPAA rating
IMDb.com, Inc. takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of the above news articles, Tweets, or blog posts. This content is published for the entertainment of our users only. The news articles, Tweets, and blog posts do not represent IMDb's opinions nor can we guarantee that the reporting therein is completely factual. Please visit the source responsible for the item in question to report any concerns you may have regarding content or accuracy.