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Playback: Aaron Katz on ‘Gemini’ and the Erosion of Mid-Budget Studio Filmmaking

Playback: Aaron Katz on ‘Gemini’ and the Erosion of Mid-Budget Studio Filmmaking
Welcome to “Playback,” a Variety / iHeartRadio podcast bringing you exclusive conversations with the talents behind many of today’s hottest films.

Filmmaker Aaron Katz has been making movies for 10 years in the independent space. He lived in New York for most of that time, cranking out projects like “Quiet City” and “Cold Weather” before the award-winning “Land Ho!” opened even more doors. His latest film is “Gemini,” a stylish, Hollywood-set neo-noir that, for Katz, was partly a way of wrangling with a love-hate relationship with the City of Angels.

Listen to this week’s episode of “Playback” below. New episodes air every Thursday.

Click here for more episodes of “Playback.”

“One of the reasons to make this movie is to confront my conflicted feelings about it and sort of live in the tradition of movies and books that both celebrate and have a lot of trepidation about Hollywood,” he says.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Larrain Brothers Appoint Geoff Stier as CEO of Fabula in North America (Exclusive)

Fabula’s Pablo and Juan de Dios Larraín, producers of Academy Award winner “A Fantastic Woman,” have appointed seasoned former Paramount exec Geoff Stier as CEO of Fabula in North America.

Paramount Pictures Evp of production from 2009, where he developed and managed feature projects such as “True Grit” and “World War Z,” Stier will begin to head up Fabula in North America from the second week of April, still based out of Los Angeles where Chile’s Larraín brothers established a production company last year.

Fabula’s first full-on U.S. production, a remake of “A Fantastic Woman’s” director Sebastian Lelio’s “Gloria” starring Julianne Moore and directed by Lelio himself, went into production late last year. Stier will report to the Larraín brothers.

“We have found a wonderful partner who is brilliant, great fun and an extraordinary professional, has a great background and sensibility and understands what we want to do,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Christopher Walken and Elizabeth Debicki cast in neo-noir thriller The Burnt Orange Heresy

According to THR, Oscar-winner Christopher Walken (The Deer Hunter) and Elizabeth Debicki (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2) have been cast in the neo-noir thriller The Burnt Orange Heresy, which is being helmed by Giuseppe Capotondi, the Golden Lion-nominated director of The Double Hour.

Adapted from Charles Willeford’s (Miami Blues) novel and scripted by Scott B. Smith (A Simple Plan), The Burnt Orange Heresy takes place in Italy in 1970, with THR providing the following plot summary:

“The project follows the story of irresistibly charismatic art critic James Figueras (yet to be cast), who hooks up with provocative and alluring fellow American Berenice Hollis (Debicki). He’s a classic anti-hero in the making with a charm that masks his deep ambition, while she’s an innocent touring Europe, enjoying the freedom of being whomever she wishes. The new lovers travel to the lavish and opulent Lake Como estate of Cassidy,
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

How ‘Disaster Artist’ Writers Created Story of Friendship for Director-Star James Franco

How ‘Disaster Artist’ Writers Created Story of Friendship for Director-Star James Franco
A24’s “The Disaster Artist” is all about defying expectations. The 2003 Tommy Wiseau film “The Room” was a fiasco, but became an enduring hit. And in his 2017 movie about the making of the film, director-star James Franco approached this camp material with a straight face, finding heart and warmth where most people would find easy mockery.

Another happy surprise: Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber are Oscar-nominated for the screenplay. The pair have been friends and writing partners since 1999. Their first produced screenplay was “500 Days of Summer” in 2009, and in nine years they have seen seven scripts filmed, including two in 2017: Netflix’s “Our Souls at Night” for Jane Fonda and Robert Redford, and “Disaster Artist.”

As Weber laughingly told Variety, “If you had told us two years ago that we were going to be Oscar-nominated for a movie about Tommy Wiseau, but not for the movie we were writing for Jane Fonda and Robert
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Christopher Walken, Elizabeth Debicki Join Neo-Noir Thriller 'Burnt Orange Heresy' (Exclusive)

Christopher Walken, Elizabeth Debicki Join Neo-Noir Thriller 'Burnt Orange Heresy' (Exclusive)
Oscar winner Christopher Walken and rising star Elizabeth Debicki (The Night Manager, Steve McQueen’s upcoming Widows) have been cast in The Burnt Orange Heresy, the new neo-noir thriller from Golden Lion-nominated filmmaker Giuseppe Capotondi (The Double Hour).

The project — announced by HanWay Films, which is handling international sales in Berlin — is based on a screenplay by Oscar-nominated writer Scott B. Smith (A Simple Plan) and adapted from the cult novel by Charles Willeford (Miami Blues) about an art-world scam that goes horribly wrong.

Three-time BAFTA-nominated William Horberg (The Kite Runner, Cold Mountain, The Talented Mr. Ripley) will produce...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Who’s your favorite Best Director Oscar winner of the 1990s: Steven Spielberg, James Cameron, Jonathan Demme … ? [Poll]

Who’s your favorite Best Director Oscar winner of the 1990s: Steven Spielberg, James Cameron, Jonathan Demme … ? [Poll]
While lately we’ve seen splits between Best Director and Best Picture at the Oscars, the 1990s were full of the awards being paired together. In fact, there was only one instance in 10 years that there was a split — the infamous “Shakespeare in Love” vs. “Saving Private Ryan” year. Additionally, there are many well-known directors who won this category in the ’90s, including a pair of actors turned directors.

So which Best Director of the ’90s is your favorite? Look back on the winners and vote in our poll below! (See 2018 Oscar predictions for Best Director.)

Kevin Costner, “Dances with Wolves” (1990) — Kevin Costner won Best Director for his directorial debut, “Dances with Wolves.” He also plays the lead character in the film, Lieutenant John J. Dunbar, for which he was nominated for Best Actor. Costner won another Oscar as a producer on “Dances with Wolves” when the film won Best Picture.
See full article at Gold Derby »

Review: The Assassination of Gianni Versace Is a 'Juicy Saga' That Explores Celebrity Obsession

Review: The Assassination of Gianni Versace Is a 'Juicy Saga' That Explores Celebrity Obsession
On July 15, 1997, one of the 20th century’s most perversely awful convergences of fate occurred in Miami’s South Beach: Standing outside his mansion, superstar designer Gianni Versace was shot to death by Andrew Cunanan, a young man who’d recently achieved his own ghastly celebrity as a serial killer on the lam.

Titled The Assassination of Gianni Versace, it’s a fitting subject for season 2 of Ryan Murphy’s American Crime Story. The show’s first season, The People v. O.J. Simpson, elevated rubbernecking to an art. This, too, is a juicy saga, both outrageous and tragic: Cunanan’s murderous,
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

18 Photos That Will Totally Reignite Your Jude Law Crush

  • Popsugar
18 Photos That Will Totally Reignite Your Jude Law Crush
Jude Law first came into our lives back in 1989, and, well, I personally feel quite blessed. Although I have a particular soft spot for his character in The Holiday (I mean, have you seen him in glasses?), the British star was also totally dreamy in The Talented Mr. Ripley, Alfie, Closer, and even, dare I say it, in Sherlock Holmes and Anna Karenina (you can't deny that he even looks good with a questionable mustache). He also is a great actor who has received a multitude of praise for his work from his peers, including two Oscar nominations. This year, he's up for a Golden Globe for his work in The Young Pope. Next, we'll get to see him as a hot, young Dumbledore in the upcoming sequel to Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and to say that is highly anticipated would be an understatement. While we wait
See full article at Popsugar »

Just in Time for The Holiday! Kate Winslet and Jude Law Reunite 11 Years After Movie

Just in Time for The Holiday! Kate Winslet and Jude Law Reunite 11 Years After Movie
It’s been over a decade since Kate Winslet and Jude Law costarred as brother and sister in The Holiday, but that doesn’t make their Christmas time reunion any less magical.

The actors attended a screening of her new film Wonder Wheel at The Soho Hotel in London, England, on Monday, sparking memories of the beloved romantic comedy about two women from opposite sites of the Atlantic Ocean who swap houses over the Christmas season, only to each find love.

Winslet and Law, who also appeared together in 2011’s Contagion, posed for photos with director and producer Stephen Daldry,
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

10 Fight Club Facts You Never Knew

10 Fight Club Facts You Never Knew
Today, it's an oft-quoted classic, but Fight Club was only a modest success when it was released in 1999. Its cult film status was cemented by repeated VHS and DVD viewings, thanks to the brilliant performances by Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, and Helena Bonham Carter in David Fincher's adaptation of the novel of the same name. By now, we're all as familiar with the movie's twist as we are the whole bit in The Sixth Sense. Yes, there's the whole "first rule of Fight Club," but we've all shared anecdotes like the subversive frames hidden in the movie, or the Starbucks cups in every scene. Here, we look at 10 things you never knew about Fight Club.

The Producers courted four different directors.

It's hard to imagine anyone else behind the camera, but producers approached at least three other directors for the job before making a deal with David Fincher, who
See full article at MovieWeb »

‘Harry Clarke’ Theater Review: Billy Crudup Visits a Patricia Highsmith Landscape

  • The Wrap
Patricia Highsmith didn’t write plays. Fortunately, David Cale does write them, and his new one, “Harry Clarke,” received its world premiere Tuesday at Off Broadway’s Vineyard Theatre. As the character Harry Clarke tells us early in this one-person thriller starring Billy Crudup, “I don’t understand why anyone would read reviews. Why would you want to know what’s going to happen?” He has a point. It’s best not to know too much about “Harry Clarke” before seeing it, just as you wouldn’t want to know much about Highsmith’s “Strangers on a Train” and “The Talented Mr. Ripley
See full article at The Wrap »

Orson Welles’ Final Film ‘Other Side of the Wind’ Nears Completion, Hires Post-Production Team (Exclusive)

Orson Welles’ Final Film ‘Other Side of the Wind’ Nears Completion, Hires Post-Production Team (Exclusive)
Orson Welles’ unfinished final film, “The Other Side of the Wind,” is nearing completion following the hiring of Academy Award winners Bob Murawski as editor and Scott Millan as sound mixer.

The producers have also tapped negative cutter Mo Henry, who has worked on more than 300 films, along with Ruth Hasty as post-production supervisor.

Netflix acquired global rights in March to ‘The Other Side of the Wind” and is financing the completion of the movie with plans for a 2018 release. The film was shot by Welles beginning in 1970 from a screenplay he co-wrote with Oja Kodar. It stars John Huston, Peter Bogdanovich, Kodar, Robert Random, Lilli Palmer, Edmond O’Brien, Cameron Mitchell, Mercedes McCambridge, Susan Strasberg, Norman Foster, Paul Stewart, and Dennis Hopper.

Producer Frank Marshall, who served as a production manager on the original production and has led efforts to complete this film for more than 40 years, is overseeing completion of the film with consultation from Bogdanovich
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Matt Damon Says He Knew Harvey Weinstein Was a ‘Womanizer,’ Not a Predator

Matt Damon Says He Knew Harvey Weinstein Was a ‘Womanizer,’ Not a Predator
George Clooney and Matt Damon continued to speak out against Harvey Weinstein, the mogul who helped launch both of their careers, alleging they didn’t know the extent of Weinstein’s misconduct.

“When people say like, ‘Everybody knew,’ Like, yeah, I knew he was an a—hole,” Damon told ABC News in a joint interview with Clooney. “He was proud of that. That’s how he carried himself. I knew he was a womanizer. I wouldn’t want to be married to the guy. But this level of criminal sexual predation is not something that I ever thought was going on. Absolutely not.”

Clooney said Weinstein talked to him about women he had affairs with, though Clooney didn’t believe him.

“I didn’t really think that they were going to have affairs with Harvey, quite honestly. And clearly they didn’t. But the idea that this predator, this assaulter, was out there
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Matt Damon Knew About Gwyneth Paltrow's Weinstein Sexual Harassment Story

Matt Damon Knew About Gwyneth Paltrow's Weinstein Sexual Harassment Story
Matt Damon didn't mince words when he called Harvey Weinstein an "asshole" and a "womanizer" during an interview with Good Morning America Monday.

The actor also revealed that he knew about Gwyneth Paltrow's allegations of sexual harassment against the movie mogul for years, long before Paltrow came forward earlier this month.

"I knew the story about Gwyneth from Ben because he was with her after Brad [Pitt]," Damon said. (Paltrow and Affleck dated in the late Nineties, following her broken engagement with Pitt.) "But I was working with Gwyneth, with Harvey,
See full article at Rolling Stone »

Matt Damon Admits He Heard About Harvey Weinstein Sexually Harassing Gwyneth Paltrow

Matt Damon Admits He Heard About Harvey Weinstein Sexually Harassing Gwyneth Paltrow
Suburbicon” director George Clooney and star Matt Damon have started to make the press rounds for their drama, which opens October 27, but their taped appearance on “Good Morning America” was more memorable for their new comments on the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment scandal. Both actors condemned Weinstein’s actions in previous statements while stressing that they never knew about the extent of his behavior, but on “Good Morning America” the two admitted to at least knowing Weinstein was having affairs.

“When people say ‘everybody knew’ – Yeah, I knew he was an asshole,” Damon said. “He was proud of that. That’s how he carried himself. And I knew he was a womanizer. I wouldn’t want to be married to the guy. But that’s not my business.”

Read More:Matt Damon Breaks Silence on Harvey Weinstein: ‘I Am Not the Story Here. The Story is These Women’

Clooney,
See full article at Indiewire »

Matt Damon Says He and Ben Affleck Knew About Harvey Weinstein Allegedly Sexually Harassing Gwyneth Paltrow

Matt Damon Says He and Ben Affleck Knew About Harvey Weinstein Allegedly Sexually Harassing Gwyneth Paltrow
Matt Damon says that while working with Harvey Weinstein on several films, he found the Hollywood movie mogul to be both a "bully" and a "womanizer."

While the 47-year-old actor has claimed that he was unaware of the accusations of sexual assault and harassment against Weinstein by numerous women, he had heard about his alleged indecent behavior toward Gwyneth Paltrow.

Paltrow dated Damon's best friend, Ben Affleck, after the alleged incident occurred and also co-starred with Damon in the 1999 movie The Talented Mr. Ripley, which Weinstein produced.

"I knew the story about Gwyneth from Ben because he was with her after Brad [Pitt]," Damon confessed during an interview with Good Morning America's Michael Strahan, which aired on Monday. "But I was working with Gwyneth and Harvey on Ripley."

Damon says he never "talked to Gwyneth" about the alleged encounter with Weinstein. "Ben told me, but I knew that they had come to whatever agreement or understanding they had come
See full article at Entertainment Tonight »

Cate Blanchett Responds to Harvey Weinstein Sexual Assault Scandal (Exclusive)

Cate Blanchett Responds to Harvey Weinstein Sexual Assault Scandal (Exclusive)
Oscar winner Cate Blanchett has come forth to make a statement on the bombshell sexual assault statements against Harvey Weinstein.

“Any man in a position of power or authority who thinks it’s his prerogative to threaten, intimidate or sexually assault any woman he encounters or works alongside needs to be called to account. It is never easy for a woman to come forward in such situations and I wholeheartedly support those who have,” Blanchett said.

Blanchett worked with the Weinstein Co. on films such as “Carol” and “The Aviator,” for which she won the best supporting actress Oscar. Earlier in her career, she starred in Miramax films such as “The Talented Mr. Ripley” and “The Shipping News.”

She is currently appearing in “Thor: Ragnarok” and has “Where’d You Go Bernadette” coming out in 2018.

Harvey Weinstein was fired from the Weinstein Co. Sunday after a report in the New York Times revealed that he had made
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Matt Damon Denies Trying to Kill 2004 Story on Harvey Weinstein, Says He Never Witnessed Alleged Harassment

Matt Damon Denies Trying to Kill 2004 Story on Harvey Weinstein, Says He Never Witnessed Alleged Harassment
Matt Damon is trying to set the record straight.

In an interview with on Tuesday, the 47-year-old actor opened up about claims that he tried to kill a 2004 New York Times article on Harvey Weinstein.

In a article by Sharon Waxman, the former New York Times reporter claimed that she tried to file a story about Weinstein's alleged history of sexual misconduct in 2004, but the piece was cut after pressure from Hollywood elites like Damon and Russell Crowe. Waxman, who founded The Wrap in 2009, claimed that Damon and Crowe called her "directly" to shut down reports she was following about Miramax's Italian head, Fabrizio Lombardo, who was allegedly hired "to take care of Weinstein's women needs."

Damon denied that he tried to put a stop to the Weinstein story in his interview with Deadline, explaining that he made a "one-minute phone call" to Waxman at Weinstein's request.

Related: Ben Affleck Condemns Harvey Weinstein After Sexual Assault Allegations: 'I Am Saddened
See full article at Entertainment Tonight »

Matt Damon Denies He Helped Bury Earlier Expose About Harvey Weinstein: 'I Am Not the Story'

Matt Damon Denies He Helped Bury Earlier Expose About Harvey Weinstein: 'I Am Not the Story'
Matt Damon says he didn’t help kill a story about Harvey Weinstein‘s inappropriate behavior over a decade ago, and promises to “be vigilant” in outing sexual misconduct when he sees it.

In a new interview with Deadline, the Oscar winner, 47, said that he “would never, ever, ever try to kill a story like that. I just wouldn’t do that. It’s not something I would do, for anybody.”

Weinstein famously championed Damon and Ben Affleck’s 1997 film Good Will Hunting, which he produced and distributed through his former company Miramax. Affleck and Damon two took home an Oscar for the film,
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

Matt Damon Breaks Silence on Harvey Weinstein: ‘I Am Not the Story Here. The Story is These Women’

Matt Damon Breaks Silence on Harvey Weinstein: ‘I Am Not the Story Here. The Story is These Women’
Matt Damon has joined Ben Affleck in going on the record with remarks in regards to Harvey Weinstien’s history of alleged sexual harassment. The latest report from The New Yorker included 13 more women going the record against Weinstein. Three of the women, including actress Asia Argento, accused Weinstein of rape.

Read More:Matt Damon and Russell Crowe Reportedly Helped Kill a New York Times Article About Harvey Weinstein in 2004

Damon’s name got thrown into the scandal after The Wrap’s Sharon Waxman accused him and Russell Crowe of helping to kill a story about the Weinstein scandal back in 2004 that The New York Times was working on. Waxman said that Fabrizio Lombardo, who ran Miramax’s Italian office, was helping bring women to Weinstein and that Damon and Crowe had called her to vouch in his defense after The New York Times was tipped to his actions.

Speaking exclusively to Deadline,
See full article at Indiewire »
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