Updated - 'The Departed' sequel rumors, and a tip of the hat from Marty

To pile rumors onto previous rumors, The L.A. Times and Variety are both running stories in conflict with an earlier report from MTV news, straight from The Departed star Mark Wahlberg’s mouth. While MTV wrote that Martin Scorsese was the driving force behind looking into the plausibility of both a sequel and a prequel to the film (as did their source material - Hong Kong’s Infernal Affairs), as well as gauging the interest of one Robert De Niro, The Times states that screenwriter William Monahan is the one doing the legwork, and is solely focused on a sequel at the moment. Variety reports that Monahan “tossed about the idea with Martin Scorsese, albeit informally.” Neither Scorsese or Warner Brothers have commented on the speculation up to this point.

Related: Entertainment Weekly points to this ingenious, straight out of film school breakdown of screenshots from The Departed, by Rene Rodriguez of The Miami Herald. As demonstrated in a collection of 15 shots (example below), Scorsese pays tribute to Howard Hawks’ Scarface by symbolically dropping X’s throughout the film, as Hawks did in 1932.

xs-in-the-departed.jpg

The DVD releases on February 13th, just 12 days before Scorsese gets another swing at acquiring his first, long overdue Oscar. Doing some investigating of our own, by way of a Departed screener floated to us by an industry source (ha!), our staff has uncovered another odd, single frame snuck into the film:

bestpicturecontender.jpg

Posted by Ted Zee on January 31st 2007 | 1 Comment

Wrapping Sundance - The 40,000 foot view

For those who’ve slept through Sundance and it’s 125 entries this year, or would rather the wheat be separated from the chaff, so to speak - check the winners list and then proceed at your leisure, from the executive summary material, to the day by day minutiae.

Karina Longworth offers three overlooked gems, and five films most likely to hit your local theater. Bonus: a video exit poll of moviegoers that had just watched Dakota Fanning in Hounddog, on whether the rape scene controversy was much ado about nothing. Keep in mind though, those Sundance cats are largely NPR listening flag-burners anyway

– A mixed bag it was, but the Sundance Channel on YouTube provided the most comprehensive video coverage within the festival, with over 80 selections to choose from. And Zoom In’s video dispatches were nothing to sneeze at either.

– Not enough? IndieWire set up camp for the duration of Sundance, and compiled over 90 interviews, reviews, and features.

– Finally, David Hudson’s tireless coverage of the coverage, over at GreenCine Daily. If you can’t find your Sundance news there, it never happened.

Posted by Ted Zee on January 31st 2007 | 3 Comments

Casual Browsing: Me and You and Every Film We Know

miranda julyLos Angeles: Miranda July (Me and You and Everyone We Know) needs your help (MySpace) in rehearsing an upcoming multi-media performance to include elements of audience participation, although it appears that the real deal - her third presentation of Things We Don’t Understand and Definitely Are Not Going To Talk About, will take place in New York for a (possibly sold out) performance in March.

– “Recruit an unpaid MySpace army to create buzz…Turn the trailer into a music video” - two examples of how to sell an awful film in 12 easy steps. (Mediabistro)

Jenna Fischer (The Office) to play John C. Reilly’s June Carter-like love interest in fake-musical biopic Walk Hard.

– Go-go dancers. Amputees with leg-stump mounted machine guns. Zombies borne from chemical weapons. “We’ve thrown around so many ideas, it’s just a huge concept to wrap our brains around.” Robert Rodriguez & Quentin Tarantino - Grindhouse. Quentin leaves the door open for more double features from the duo. New York Times.

– After over a week of careful, deliberate debate, the blogger collective at Cinemarati top have drafted their top 20 film picks for 2006, culminating with Oscar ostracized Children of Men. Amen.

– “I’ve started watching Mr. H at work a lot, too. It’s my favorite Home Plus pass time these days…If Bill’s alone at lunch tomorrow, I’m sitting with him…at least at the same table…but maybe on the other end…unless he asks me to scoot down and talk to him” - Margene’s Diary, a blog prequel of sorts, to HBO’s Big Love. Look for season 2 this summer.

Posted by Ted Zee on January 29th 2007 | 0 Comments

Online Video Selections: 'This American Life', Woody, Illeana, New DVDs

– NPR’s Ira Glass talks to the Sundance Channel about the upcoming television adaptation of This American Life, coming to Showtime. Includes brief cuts of the show.

– Vintage Woody Allen clips from The Dick Cavett show, circa 1971. The two talk Play it Again, Sam and Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex - then Bergman, Antonioni, Freud, Particle Physics, and a host of other topics in this rambling discussion. Woody also jams the clarinet for the audience. Via Zigzigger.

– After slumming it up in the supermarket aisles with the likes of Justine Bateman, Ed Begley Jr., and Jeff Goldblum, Ileana Douglas brings her YouTube based, short series Illeanarama (previously discussed) to a screeching halt with the final episode, but there are rumblings of more on the way from Illeana - a bonus episode, at the very least. All five episodes available here.

– iFilm provides the first 8 minutes of Kirby Dick’s film ratings board stalking doc This Film Is Not Yet Rated, now available on DVD. Also out now: Maggie Gyllenhaal in Sherrybaby, documentary Jesus Camp, and The Puffy Chair. Stepsister road-tripper Little Miss Sunshine inherited the looks, but Puffy’s got all the no-frills charm and personality.

Posted by Ted Zee on January 29th 2007 | 0 Comments

Video: Gervais Meets...Larry David, Christopher Guest

In 2006, Ricky Gervais hosted sit downs with three of his favorite comedians - Larry David (Curb Your Enthusiasm, Seinfeld), Christopher Guest, and Gary Shandling for the UK’s Channel 4. Talking about the creative process, their influences, and the nuts and bolts of comedy - it’s a love-fest full of clips from their respective works, anchored by Ricky’s effusive hero-worship (he calls Guest’s Spinal Tap “the biggest single influence on my work”). Makes for great lunch break viewing, though these things tend to have a short shelf-life on YouTube, so watch while you can.

With Larry David: Part 1 - below (proceedings officially begin around the 3 minute mark) - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5

With Christopher Guest: Part 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5

Previously: Gervais. David Bowie. Extras season 2

Posted by Ted Zee on January 24th 2007 | 4 Comments

Non-continuing Oscar coverage

Your 2007 Academy Award nominations, if you’ve missed them thus far. Not a lot of surprises, although I’m pleased to see Kate Winslet and Jackie Earle Haley receive attention for their turns in Little Children.

Little Miss Sunshine being among the Best Picture hopefuls should not be a surprise for anyone paying attention to the massive media-blitz put on by Fox Searchlight. The Little Film That Could is a misnomer considering the untold millions sunk into marketing the decrepit Yellow Bus, making Universal’s push for Children of Men (my pick of last year) look like they gave it the Idiocracy treatment by comparison. Not to say that LMS is a bad film by any means - but bowl-cut, Nietzsche reading mutes and suicidal, gay Proust scholars amount to the stuff of sitcoms at worst, Wes Anderson pretenders at best. However, with Oscar goggles secured firmly, anything is possible. I mean, consider the big hollow thud of Crash for godsakes.

Posted by Ted Zee on January 23rd 2007 | 0 Comments

Sundance: Day 5 - The Talk of the Town

With well over 100 films of all shapes, sizes, and genres (and more than a few defying description) screening in Park City at the moment, only a small percentage are fated to successfully navigate from the festival circuit to your local art-house or cineplex.  Not the best indicator of a film’s worth or substance, but someone with deep pockets has to want to pick up and distribute the films that screen for Sundance audiences, and for better or worse, it often comes down to the buzz, baby. After a flurry of screenings and aquisitions this weekend, the pundits are naming names.

The Hollywood Reporter’s Anne Thompson (Risky Biz) participates in a video roundtable with Cinematical editor James Rocchi and Kim Voynar - editor of new offshoot Cinematical Indie, to talk up the noteworthy screenings over the kick-off weekend, and more to watch out for - Sarah Polley’s directorial debut - Away from Her, Russian drama The Island, docs Chicago 10, The Ghosts of Abu Ghraib, and Nanking.  A lengthy discussion, also including: Catherine Keener in An American Crime, Adrienne Shelly’s posthumously released film Waitress, Snow Angels, Black Snake Moan, Red Road, and horror-comedy Teeth. Speaking of the latter, it appears that “vagina dentata” may reach overused insider catchprase status at some early point this year.

See also: Blurby buzz from middle-brow tastemakers Entertainment Weekly, and hearsay - both good and bad, from Variety. Lastly, Deadline Hollywood’s roundup of early Sundance deals - i.e., films you might actually catch in your neck of the woods, someday.

Posted by Ted Zee on January 23rd 2007 | 4 Comments

Sundance: Day 3 & 4, in Video

  • The Sundance Channel currently has over 30 short videos - directors profiles, interviews, and street scene dispatches from the Four Eyed Monsters duo on their YouTube page. Selections include a sit down with Gina Gershon and Steve Buscemi for paparazzi dramedy Delirious, and Jeffrey Blitz, director of high-schooling coming of age (in the vein of Thumbsucker) story, Rocket Science.
  • IFC News on director David Wain’s (Wet Hot American Summer, alum of Stella and The State) new comedy The Ten - comprised of ten stories based on The Ten Commandments. Cast includes Jessica Alba, Paul Rudd, Rob Corddry, plus (featured in video) Winona Ryder and Gretchen Mol. Also, from last year’s Sundance, Kirby Dick’s doc This Film Is Not Yet Rated belatedly spurns small concessions from the MPAA on their ratings considerations.
  • indieWire’s continuing iW Video segments:  Alternative programming at the Slamdance festival, a review of Weapons.
  • Zoom In interviews Tommy O’Haver about An American Crime, starring Catherine Keener.  Based on true events, Keener (in a role she was “scared to death” to play) as Gertrude Baniszewski - a mother who, with the aid of her own children and neighborhood kids - abused, tortured, and eventually murdered a teenage girl (played by Hard Candy’s Ellen Page).
Posted by Ted Zee on January 22nd 2007 | 0 Comments

Sundance: Day 2

Continued accumulation of daily dispatches from Park City, updated throughout the day:

“In advance of the Monday night Sundance debut screening of Hounddog (aka “The Dakota Fanning Project”), which contains a graphic scene of Fanning (who was 12 at the time) being raped, the Catholic League is calling for a federal investigation of possible child pornography, the biggest controversy to explode to date at the festival.” - Gregg Goldstein, Risky Biz

“Oh. This is that rape movie. Who is gonna pay 10 bucks to watch a kid get raped? So what if you’ve got Dakota Fanning. None of her fans are going to come to see it anyway.” - L.A. Times on filmmaker Deborah Kampmeier and the eleven years, four failed financing attempts, and 21 producers credits between finished script and controversial release.

  • David Poland: “Just saw what might well be this Sundance’s You, Me & Everyone We Know. It’s called Expired and it is a romance of broken people [Samantha Morton and Jason Patric] who, in this case, happen to be ‘meter maids’”.  Also features Terri Garr and Illeana Douglas.
  • Reid Rosefelt of Zoom In describes the rigamarole of day one, and posts a video interview with indieWire’s Eugene Hernandez as he describes his manic schedule, and vows to trim out the number of parties visited while holding himself to a curfew.
  • “(I’m) actually invigorated by the prospect of attending a film festival in which an over-hyped (and over-priced) Vacation retread steals headlines (and potential aquisition dollars) from ten or twelve films more deserving of market share”. - Karina Longworth, in response to early reports that the festival is effectively dead on arrival, and devoid of commercial prospects.
  • indieWire rolls out their first audio/visual segment for iW Video, with opening night featured director Brett Morgen, on his partially animated documentary, Chicago 10, focusing on the seven anti-war protesters put on trial following the 1968 Democratic National Convention. The film features voice-overs by Hank Azaria, Nick Notle, Mark Ruffalo, Roy Scheider, and Jeffrey Wright, though Morgen lost me at Rage Against the Machine. Also, in an opening night conference, Robert Redford talks about the overreliance on buzz.
  • “A vibrantly crafted evocation…’Chicago 10‘ is far less interested in offering a fresh, probing look at what took place on the streets during the 1968 Democratic National Convention and the circus trial that followed than it is in celebrating the stars of the anti-war movement and rallying the current generation to follow their examples.” - Variety review.  Screengrab collects more, mixed reviews of the film.
  • “While it still produces its share of successes, a Sundance victory is not the passport to the mainstream of popular imagination. Nor is it the melting pot of new talent that many imagine.” - The Guardian (via Hollywood Elsewhere)
Posted by Ted Zee on January 19th 2007 | 0 Comments

Conjecture: 'Departed' Trilogy

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As one of the few actors to play a role in The Departed not to meet the business end of a point blank shot to the head, Mark Wahlberg has made an offering to the rumor mill, telling MTV News that Martin Scorsese is out making the rounds, checking for interest among actors - like Robert De Niro, while hashing out the possibilities for his first sequeled franchise - a sequel and a prequel actually, ala the Infernal Affairs trilogy:

“We may do another one, because it’s based on a Hong Kong film [’Infernal Affairs’], and there is a trilogy,” the actor said. “So we may do a sequel with a new cast, and a prequel and bring back the rest of the guys…They’re talking to Robert De Niro and a couple of other people. Anybody who is anybody wants to work with Marty.”

Story via Filmstalker

Posted by Ted Zee on January 19th 2007 | 1 Comment

Sundance: Day 1

I’ll be compiling the best reviews, features, interviews, and video coming out of the Sundance Festival, from today until the 28th. One post per day, updated a few times thoughout the day and night:

  • “The problem with Black Snake Moan isn’t the incendiary nature of the material…The problem is simply one of time structure: The amount of time Lazarus ministers to Rae is just too short for her victory over her self…a film where the lead actress is literally wrapped in forty pounds of metaphor, and where lifetimes of abuse, addiction and regret can be cleared up over the course of less than a week with some moonshine and home cooking and 12-bar riffs” - James Rocci review
  • “She so much wanted this film to get in here, to be seen, and that’s why all of us knew that there was no way that she committed suicide. This movie is a huge turning point in her career.” The New York Times gets reaction from Adrienne Shelly’s circle, as Waitress, a film that she wrote, directed, and starred in, premieres two and a half months after her tragic death. Forever to be mentioned in the same breath as Hal Hartley, who remembers the actress, while talking his new film - Fay Grim, via The Reeler.
  • GreenCine points to Filmmaker mag’s festival features, including Risk Factors: 20 emerging directors provide blubs about the roadblocks presented between script to screen.
  • Variety kicks off their coverage with a full-blown features page: Distributors try to sort though a festival lineup that’s “more arthouse and less ‘Little Miss Sunshine,’” - the commercial diamond in the rough that will be referenced countless times in the next two weeks.
  • Twitch features an interview with Mark Duplass, director of The Puffy Chair, a standout of last year’s festival - unfortunately overshadowed by the dollar signs attached to another comic road trip, LMS. Duplass notes that along with the DVD release on January 23rd, he and brother Jay have a new film in post-production, two more slated for studio release, and the possibility of a series in the works for NBC.
  • Free, streaming video shorts premiering at Sundance - updated daily
  • Mos Def and Sarah Polley, directors Darren Aronofsky and Jared Hess among the list of competition judges.
  • Via Cinematical, something akin to a text-messaging chat room - The Park City Fest Mob - Sundance bloggers on the ground documenting gossip and goings-on.
  • “Digital Media Evangelists” and video-short darlings Susan Buice and Arin Crumley (Four Eyed Monsters) will be video blogging daily from the Sundance Channel’s platform on YouTube. Also, first-time director Zoe Cassavetes on Parkey Posey and Broken English:

Posted by Ted Zee on January 18th 2007 | 0 Comments

HBO, updated

Details on HBO’s 2007 lineup coming out of their presentations to the Television Critics Association last week:

  • The final season of The Sopranos and the second-half of season three for Entourage premiere on April 8th.  The airing of the ninth and final episode for The Sopranos will coincide with the premiere of David Milch’s post-Deadwood project - John From Cincinnati, meaning that, assuming there are no breaks during The Sopranos run, the earliest possible start date for John (and end date for Tony Soprano) would be June 3rd.
  • James Gandolfini is also producing and conducting interviews with wounded soldiers on their return home, for the tentatively titled documentary -Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraq, scheduled to air on July 4th.
  • Paul Giamatti and Laura Linney in seven-hour historical miniseries - John Adams
  • TV Squad talks HBO’s orginal movies - Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee, based on the Dee Brown book, starring Anna Paquin, Aidan Quinn, and Adam Beach - along with Longford, featuring Samantha Morton, based on the true-life case of Myra Hindley - who assisted child murderer Ian Brady in killing 5 children in 1960’s England.
  • Rome and Extras rolled out their second seasons on Sunday - The House Next Door collects national reviews on the premieres.
  • David Milch on the future of the Deadwood movies: “We have every intention of going forward”.  David Milch on drug use: “I was involved in a subsidiary project involving nitrous oxide, and the great thing about it is that when it hits … everyone is right where they’re supposed to be … and we’re all just riding along.”  Proof that the mystical, magical surf-noir drama John from Cinncinati, is a David Milch production: the first scene previewed to the press features retired surfing pro Mitch Yost (Bruce Greenwood) uttering the words “Go Fuck Yourself“ to a starstruck fan. (Tv Squad).


Posted by Ted Zee on January 16th 2007 | 0 Comments

Sundance '07 Primer

Everything you’ve wanted to know about Redford’s bohemoth of a festival, starting January 18th - beginning with the Official lineup/guide:

  • “You say Disney and it conjures up a whole raft of associations. Sundance does the same thing on the smaller scale…. It’s the hipster’s Disney.” - Wired (via Zigzigger)
  • Half of all Sundance shorts will be downloadable from iTunes at $1.99, with most of the proceeds going to the filmmaker. They’ll also be streamed for free from the official site.
  • Catherine Keener in American Crime, Hal Hartley’s Fay Grim…pictures to watch - ACCORDING TO AICN!!!
  • Animated political documentary Chicago 10, Akira creator goes live-action for Bugmaster…Wired Blog picks fourteen (from GreenCine)
  • New York Magazine’s preview - “Sundance’s most politically ambitious slate of films to date”…poster-man-child Steve BucemiBlack Snake Moan, “Dakota Fanning as rape victim movie” Hounddog, “horse-fucking movie” Zoo - sex-shock cinema…shooting the shit with Zoe Cassavetes on her directorial debut, Parker Posey starring effort - Broken English…namedropping and casual mentionsmore (via ScreenGrab)
Posted by Ted Zee on January 13th 2007 | 1 Comment

‘Synecdoche’: Kaufman makes directorial debut with cast of heavy-hitters

With his name attached to Being John Malkovich and Adaptation, plus a screenwriting Oscar for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, it seems that penning well-received scripts for Spike Jonze and Michel Gondry has created some film-casting capitol for Charlie Kaufman, trying his hand as a first time director.According to The Hollywood Reporter, Catherine Keener, Samantha Morton and Tilda Swinton are all in negotiations to join Philip Seymour Hoffman and Michelle Williams (Production Weekly) for Synecdoche, New York - with Kaufman serving as a triple-threat screenwriter, director, and producer. Spike Jonze is co-producing the film, set to begin filming this spring in NYC.

Production company head Anthony Bregman said of Kaufman’s concept for Synecdoche: “We were kind of hoping that Charlie would write a small, contained film set in a kitchen with a couple of easy-going characters. Instead, he came up with a massive undertaking of visually elaborate worlds and stunningly complex characters and ideas.” With Keener and Williams casted as his first and second wives - respectively, and Morton as his girlfriend on the side, Hoffman plays a theater director under the belief that he’s living on borrowed time, who “ambitiously attempts to put on a play by creating a life-size replica of New York inside a warehouse”. Questions of unproven director’s chair abilities aside, one only needs to refer back to any of Kaufman’s former scripts, full of Malkovich head-trippers and regretful memory-lapsers, to have faith that the man can make the size and scope of such abstract concepts seem so immanently doable, and most likely - memorable.

See also: Gushing praise for an early iteration of Synecdoche, back in September, from Sciptland.

Posted by Ted Zee on January 11th 2007 | 0 Comments

Casual Browsing: Zoo Moan

What are people lusting after more at this very moment? Hot Gadget Porn, by way of Apple? Or the lascivious prospects of Black Snake Moan? (Trailer. Site.) It’s a rhetorical question, but stay with us - Film Comment’s Nathan Lane reviews the latter anyway:

Ricci’s performance is so fearless, specific, and blazingly committed it carries the second half of the picture over the slight underwriting of Jackson’s character and his clear limitations as an actor. She’s the white-hot focal point of Brewer’s loud, brash, encompassing vision of the soul’s dark night survived, peering into the dawn.” (via IFC blog)

  • While Six Degrees of Sam Jackson (Risky Biz) and the white-trashed Ricci should stir the national discourse a bit, what of the controversy to brew over fatal horse-man-love documentary Zoo, picked up by ThinkFilm and debuting at Sundance?
  • Chan “Cat Power” Marshall opts to match up with Seu Jorge, Tilda Swinton, Donald Sutherland, and Ryan Donowho in Doug Aiken’s video installation project, “sleepwalkers“, starting at the MoMA, Jan 16th. - Trailer (via GreenCine)
  • Kanye West to pair with director Larry Charles (Curb Your Enthusiasm, Borat) for a Kanye-centric reality series coming to HBO.
  • The IFC channel has new scripted shows on the way, in the wake of the successful runs for The Business and The Minor Accomplishments of Jackie Woodman (Laura Kightlinger) which are both scheduled to return in August. Also coming to IFC, Does Your Soul Have a Cold? - documentary project from Thumbsucker director Mike Mills (discussed earlier).
  • Park Chan-Wook to follow up his vengeance trilogy, and (the not yet seen in the states) I’m a Cyborg, But That’s OK, with a Vampire flick, tentatively titled BATS. (Kaiju Shakedown)
  • Scriptland previews a new project from Ethan Coen (one half of the Coen brothers) and wife Tricia Cooke - a “lesbian road-trip action sex comedy” entitled Drive-Away Dykes.
  • This American Life - The Ira Glass hosted NPR show has spawned an upcoming Showtime series, and now Dreamworks is looking to turn its real-lfe stories into feature films.
Posted by Ted Zee on January 10th 2007 | 1 Comment

The Shape of Things to Come

Rounding up a few forward looking pieces - some early, pre-Sundance buzz for the new year:

  • The L.A. Times gathers 2007 prognostications from 17 entertainment writers and industry types. Within, Cinematical declares Black Snake Moan, Grindhouse, Hot Fuzz (Shaun of the Dead director Edgar Wright), Judd Apatow’s Knocked Up, and I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry to be the most talked about films, while Hollywood Elsewhere predicts that at least one of three Iraq/Afghanistan films will make it to the big Oscar dance: Charlie Wilson’s War (Mike Nichols) with Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams - Lions for Lambs (Robert Redford) Tom Cruise and Meryl Streep - In The Valley of Elah (Paul Haggis) with Tommy Lee Jones, James Franco, Charlize Theron, Susan Sarandon. Also of note is The Squid and the Whale director Noah Baumbach’s next picture - Margot at the Wedding (formerly referred to as The Untitled Noah Baumbach Project), featuring Nicole Kidman, Jack Black, John Turturro and Jennifer Jason Leigh.
  • Upcoming releases Grindhouse, Black Snake Moan and Jeremy Piven’s Smokin’ Aces all bear the markings of 60’s and 70’s exploitation. Call it a comeback?
  • Salon’s Beyond the Multiplex adds 11 independent-leaning films to their to-see list, including Steve Bucemi’s Interview and Jia Zhang-ke’s Still Life.
  • And while everyone is in the mood to tout their early favorites and making mental notes on the unfolding release calendar, I’ll drop a few titles: I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone (Tsai Ming-Liang), Daniel Day Lewis in P.T. Anderson’s There Will Be Blood, suicide bomber drama Day Night Day Night (Julia Loktev), Wong Kar-Wai’s American invasion - My Blueberry Nights (assists from Jude Law, Natalie Portman, Rachel Weisz, Norah Jones), Syndromes and a Century (Apichatpong Weerasethakul), I’m a Cyborg, But That’s OK (Chan-Wook Park), plus the aforementioned Black Snake Moan (Craig Brewer)and Margot at the Wedding (Noah Baumbach). More on all of these over the coming months.
Posted by Ted Zee on January 10th 2007 | 0 Comments

Dunst in a Gondry directed Blondie biopic?

kirsten dunst in a blondie biopic?Through deductive reasoning, our friends over at Film Ick have come up with what looks likely to be another new picture for director Michel Gondry. Kirsten Dunst was rumored to have been considering the role of Debbie Harry in a Blondie biopic since October. Now, in an interview featured in New Zealand website Stuff, Dunst mentioned that her next project was to be with Gondry, playing “a well-known singer….somebody who everybody knows, but I can’t say who it is.”

Dunst is no stranger to Gondry’s work, having appeared in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and was attached to join the cast of Be Kind Rewind, but changed her mind before shooting started in September.

If all pans out as it appears it should, a rock and roll biopic would provide the former music video director an opportunity to break out from his stretch of memory and brain-bending pictures - Sunshine, The Science of Sleep, and (next up) Be Kind Rewind - featuring Mos Def and Jack Black - re-shooting and re-creating accidentally erased videotapes of hits like Ghostbusters, Robocop, and Driving Miss Daisy for a senile video store customer. Also on his future project list: Master of Space and Time, an adaptation of the Rudy Rucker science fiction novel, with a script from Daniel Clowes (Ghost World, Art School Confidential).

Previously: Be Kind Rewind, enjoy Nespresso

Posted by Ted Zee on January 08th 2007 | 4 Comments

'Inland Empire' Trailer Two

Don’t expect to gain any more understanding of what David Lynch’s self-distributed, 2 hour, 52 minute Inland Empire is all about from this recently released, french-subtitled trailer than you would after viewing the first trailer, or possibly from the film in it’s entirety, for that matter.

Related: Lynch to make a handful of appearances around the Seattle premiere, January 16th & 17th.

Posted by Ted Zee on January 06th 2007 | 0 Comments

Meeting, Greeting, Roundtables, Matchmaking

“You don’t want to have a guy fall in front of a tank because you’d make a tortilla” - cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki on Children of Men. Variety profiles the men and women behind the cameras from many of the year’s best - Little Children, The Departed, Volver, The Last King of Scotland, United 93 (9 more, listed here at bottom), talking directors notes, logistics, and aesthetic choices.

– Hollywood Reporter Roundtable One - Filmmakers Emilio Estevez, David Lynch, Guillermo del Toro, Little Miss Sunshine’s Dayton and Faris, and Nancy Meyers (The Holiday). Roundtable Two - Ben Affleck, Nicole Kidman, Edward Norton and Forest Whitaker. (via GreenCine)

– Goldenfiddle provides scans from Parker Posey interview/photo-shoot with Bust Magazine, summarily pans For Your Consideration, omits a much lower-point for Miss Posey in 2006 - making love to an ex-Taxi star (location: lagoon pool), in the name of The OH in Ohio.

– George Clooney to join Robert De Niro for remake of French crime drama 36.

Posted by Ted Zee on January 04th 2007 | 1 Comment

Online Viewing: 'Extras', 'Idiocracy', Michael Cera, Gondry

extras season two– Ricky Gervais in BBC export to HBO: Extras - Season Two. Yahoo features a 12 minute preview of Ep. 1 (Pop Candy). Premiering January 14th, the new season features appearances by Orlando Bloom (in preview), Daniel Radcliffe, Chris Martin, Sir Ian McKellen, and David Bowie (featured - archives).

– Arrested Development’s Michael Cera in Impossible is the Opposite of Possible, in homage to Yale grad Aleksey Vayner and his hot-shot video resume that launched a thousand blog quips . (Gawker)

– Solace in Cinema digs up clips and a trailer in anticipation of the January 7th DVD release of Idiocracy, the Mike Judge directed, Luke Wilson-in-(is)-the-future comedy that Fox released into as few theaters as possible - effectively dumping it - quietly, like so many unwanted kittens into the river.

– “We like to stick our forks in each others’ salad” - Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (Babel), Alfonso Cuaron (Children of Men), and Guillermo Del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth) talk up their friendships, and each others’ films with Charlie Rose. - 57 minutes. (Twitch)

– A touch on the old side, but as opposed to faked rubik’s cube tomfoolery, there’s both length and breadth to this 50 minute sit-down between Michel Gondy and another guy who pays the rent via dream sequences - Harvard sleep researcher Robert Stickgold - RE: dream interpretation, the creative process, and The Science of Sleep. (Activity Book)

Posted by Ted Zee on January 03rd 2007 | 1 Comment

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