Tuesday, June 21, 2011

George Clooney Sexting!

The Venice Film Festival will open on August 31st, with new the George Clooney directed drama, The Ides of March.

Adapted from the Beau Willimon play Farragut North, Ides stars Clooney as a presidential candidate, Ryan Gosling as a head of media and Phillip Seymour Hoffman as a campaign manager along with Paul Giamatti, Marisa Tomei and Evan Rachel Wood starring.

Taking place during the Ohio primary for the Democratic nomination, the film is extremely topical, given the recent resignation of Congressman Anthony Weiner for sending lewd photos of himself to online "sexting" partners. Similarly, The Ides of March involves the scandalous activities of a rising political figure.

Hollywoodteur G. Clooney has had several of his films presented at the star studded Venice Film Festival. His VFF repertorie includes Intolerable Cruelty, The Man Who Stared at Goats, and the Steven Soderbergh directed Out of Sight. The Ides of March is being distributed by Sony Pictures and is currently slated for a fall release.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Tree of Life for Pitt & Penn

Tree of Life is sublime. It is the film any and every studied filmmaker who laud cinema and cinema theory would want to make. It is smart, academic, personal and artsy filmmaking can be without being at all amateur, nor alienating. In fact, you could hear a pin drop in the theater. The audience was completely engaged and stimulated with what was happening on the screen. Tree wants and acts like it wants to be a coming of age movie; however, it is more about the genesis of coming to be and existing.

Written and directed by Terrence Malick, The Tree of Life stars Brad Pitt, Sean Penn and Jessica Chastain and chronicles life through the eyes of a 1950's Texas family with sci-fi features, surrealist themes and impressionistic imagery through space, oceanic waves and human anatomy. Tree easily conjures up comparisons to Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey; however, this would simply be homage as Tree is so strikingly original in glueing all of the elements of the narrative together like you have never seen before.Premiering in competition at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, The Tree of Life won the celebrated Palme d'Or and has since garnered overwhelmingly positive reviews for its technical and artistic merits, yet also received polarizing reactions in response to Malick's directorial style, in particular, film's fragmented and non-linear narrative.

Finally a movie to truly get excited about and inspired by at the cinema. Hollywoodteurs take note!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Tell No One

Warner Bros and Universal Pictures have optioned rights to Harlan Coben’s thriller Tell No One. One of the biggest-selling mystery writers in America, Coben has yet to see one of his books given the Hollywoodteur treatment. That was until now, Ben Affleck is attached to direct the screenplay written by Chris Terrio. Kathleen Kennedy and Frank Marshall are producing Harlan first Hollywood film. The studios will co-develop the picture, with Warner Bros releasing domestically and Universal Pictures International launching it overseas. The deal also involves Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp, as the project is a loose remake of the French film adaptation of Coben’s book, which was directed by Guillaume Canet with EuropaCorp ties.

Coben originally set up his book at Sony Pictures in 2002. The studio hired Star Trek scribes Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, however, it never came together and Sony let it go. Meanwhile in France, Canet then got involved, figured out how to make the premise work, set it up at EuropaCorp and turned it into French film. The plot involves a pediatrician who is out one night with his wife when she suddenly vanishes and he is severely beaten. When she turns up murdered, he is prime suspect. Canet managed to make all of that work, while Hollywoodteurs spent years unable to come up with a script to greenlight.

Hoping for yet another franchise, other Coben's other books have been bought by stealthy Hollywoodteurs seeking a R.O.I.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Madonna's Directorial Debut Lands a Distributor

W.E., the feature film directorial debut from multi-hyphenate Madonna has been acquired by The Weinstein Company (TWC) for U.S. distribution. A romantic drama co-written by Madonna and Alek Keshishian, W.E. was produced by Madonna and Kris Thykier and executive produced by Scott Franklin (Black Swan).

Starring Abbie Cornish (Limitless) and Oscar Isaac (Drive), W.E. spans six decades beginning in 1998 with the Sothesby auction of the late Duke and Duchess of Windsor's estate as a device to flash back and forth between pre World War II England and contemporary New York City.

W.E. is a contemporary love story juxtaposed that of King Edward VIII and American divorcée Wallis Simpson. In Interview magazine, Madonna said, "W.E. was fantastic and complicated. It is really about a girl who has this obsession and is going to the auctions." Coming soon.

As everything with Madonna, she reduces the potential sublime to accessibly interesting and pushes only the buttons to get the results she desires.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

$43 Million Act of Valour

Hollywoodteurs stirkes again. This time in what will shape up to be the biggest amount paid for a finished film with an unknown cast. Relativity Media pays a reported $13 million minimum guarantee with a $30 million P&A commitment for Act of Valour from Ryan Kavanaugh's company.

Valour is the first original movie of many to come about Navy SEALs since the group killed Osama Bin Laden. Others SEAL films are in various stages of production including a Kathryn Bigelow directed drama about the hunt for Bin Laden which Sony Pictures has acquired. Scripted by former Navy SEAL, Kurt Johnstad (300) and directed by the Bandito Brothers' Mike "Mouse" McCoy and Scott Waugh, Act of Valour, is a mission movie involving Navy SEALs with half dozen lead roles played by active duty Navy SEALs and the United States military was behind the production providing an extra layer of authenticity.

After screenings over the past few weeks at the Arclight and in New York, distributors began bidding. The auction, held by WME Global's Liesl Copland and Graham Taylor, heated up with Dark Castle, Alcon, Lionsgate, Film District all in the mix with comparable bids. However, the sellers were intrigued with the Hollywoodteur aggressiveness of Relativity's Ryan Kavanaugh, Tucker Tooley, and Terry Curtin's comprehensive marketing campaign.

Act of Valour was given the greenlight and executive produced by Legendary Pictures' Thomas Tull. Word is, Valour is very patriotic, heavy on action and will play in wide release - 3000+ screens, either at Veterans Day weekend in November or a Presidents Day release in February 2012.

Friday, June 10, 2011

A Woody In Paris

Woody Allen's latest film, Midnight in Paris, starring Owen Wilson and Rachel McAdams, is doing so well that Sony Pictures Classics is moving the film into a total of 944 theaters this weekend. Can you believe this is the widest play ever for an Allen pic after Anything Else in 2003? Truth is, I don't even recall Anything Else, which opened in 1,033 locations to begin with, and quickly vacated theaters cuming $3.2 million domestically.

Making its world premiere at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, Midnight in Paris opened in only six theaters on May 20th with one of the best location averages of all times with $99,834 at the domestic box office. The following weekend, Midnight expanded into 58 theaters, and then into 147 locations last weekend.

Midnight in Paris has done stellar business all along the way, cuming $7.4 million to date and landing on the top 10 chart for the past three weekends, despite its limited release. Sony Classics’ Tom Bernard and Michael Barker said they didn’t intend to expand nationwide until June 24th, but once they counted the gross receipts they quipped, "the film is working with audiences," and their plans quickly changed.

“Not only is this one of Woody Allen’s best films, it has this magical element which lends itself to be the alternative entertainment to the big studio picture. It has tremendous crossover potential,” Barker said. In Midnight in Paris, Wilson’s character discovers an alternate reality while in Paris with his wife. Wilson plays the sort of “everyman” character that a moviegoers tend to see in more mainstream films, versus in arthouse titles or in an Allen film. Critics across the country, and not just in New York have given Midnight in Paris great reviews.

Midnight in Paris has done great business in more commercial multiplexes and has even broken a number of house records in arthouse theaters, including the Landmark in Los Angeles. Allen’s top grossing film in recent years was Vicky Cristina Barcelona, which earned $23.2 million domestically. At its widest point, the film played in 726 theaters. Match Point grossed $23.2 million, and, at its widest, was in 512 theaters.

Get Paris on your weekend calendar.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

From Black Swan to Noah's Ark

HOT STREET: Hot from Hollywodteur Boulevard is 2011 Best Director nominate Darren Aronofsky is offering the studios a $130 package for his very own edgy re-telling of the Noah's Ark story.

Aronofsky wrote a script that is currently in rewrites with John Logan. New Regency is eyeing a co-financing role with suitors like Paramount, Fox and Summit all considering stepping up for the other half.

What is being described as a big fantasy epic, Noah, is an opportunity for Aronofsky to create his very own big Hollywood production - and world - after dropping out of The Wolverine. Now, Aronofsky is eager to make his next film a bonafide Hollywoodteur spectacle. And with more heat on him than ever, after directing the hugely profitable Black Swan, which grossed $315 million worldwide on a $12 million budget, his move towards the Ark will certainly have Hollywoodteur studio executives lining up in to get on-broad, offering tons of cash to flush out Aronosky's creativity, personal ambitions and vision.

Aronofsky recently flirted with Exodus, the 20th Century Fox and Chernin Entertainment produced telling of the story of Moses, unfolding Moses' defiance of the Pharoah and his subsequent delivery of the Hebrews from enslavement. Nobody has tried to tell the Noah's Ark story in as ambitious a manner as Aronofsky intends.

Tinsletown waits to see who will step up to assist Aronofsky cash in on Noah's Ark.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Angelina Jolie Gets Salty

Angelina Jolie wants to do a Salt sequel and Sony Pictures is moving forward on the much speculated franchise.

Kurt Wimmer has begun writing it for Jolie to reprise her role as Evelyn Salt, the CIA agent who after being outed as a Russian spy, spent the first movie running for her life - very Bourne Identity-y. The original film smartly left open a window for a possible sequel at the climax, which was directed by Phillip Noyce.

No word on who will be the Salt II director. Universal Pictures tried to draft a sequel of Wanted for Jolie; however, things did not pan out.

Pitch Me

Busy budding Hollywoodteur screenplay writer, Aaron Guzikowsi, is blowing on the fresh ink from a deal he has made with Warner Bros based upon a recent pitch of a science fiction action film project. The yet unnamed project has Sam Worthington attached and will reunite Worthington with his Clash of the Titans producer Basil Iwanyk.

While the logline is being kept under wraps, sources say it is a intergalactic war film. Iwanyk's Thunder Road shingle is currently in production on the Titans sequel. He also produced The Town and is prepping the Jeff Bridges starrer Seventh Son and the Clint Eastwood directed A Star is Born with Beyonce, all for Warner Bros.

Guzikowski wrote Prisoners, the Black List script which sold to Alcon Entertainment with Incendies helmer Denis Villeneuve slated to direct. He also scripted the Contraband remake that just wrapped with Mark Wahlberg, Kate Beckinsale and Ben Foster starring for Universal and Working Title.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Sex Tape For 7-Digits

Sony Pictures paid a low 7-digits to acquired a working title script Sex Tape. Penned by Kate Angelo, Sex Tape is about a married couple who get a night off from their kids, get adventurous and decide to spice up their lives by making a sex tape. The next morning the couple awakens to find their sex tape no where to be found. Then the couple must find out who their tape it and how to get it back.

Sex will be produced by Escape Artists partners Todd Black, Jason Blumenthal and Steve Tisch, who came up with the idea. UTA and David Fox represent Angelo, who most recently scripted the Jennifer Lopez romantic comedy The Back-Up Plan. Columbia Pictures execs Andrea Giannetti and Adam Milano will steer and fast track the Sex project.

Hollywood, so full of imagination and intriguing ideas.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Hollywood - The Aryan Nation

Recently the The Hollywood(teur) Reporter featured a story called "Hollywood's A-List Redined." So, how does Hollywood define redefined? The list consisted of nine (9) "hot" young actors of which THR proclaims Tinseltown Hollywoodteurs are banking on to helm their future studio blockbusters, tentpoles, reboots and franchises. This list had no women, no Blacks, no Asians, no Hispanics and no Latins. Essentially the Hollywood continuum of an aryan entertainment culture.

As America, the United States of America specifically, becomes less and less white, and more and more Asian, Latin, Hispanic, Black, Mixed Race, Multi-Ethnic, why does Hollywood imagery continue to be more and more white and even less and less diverse? The next time you step up to a cinemaplex box-office you may want to redefine what entertainment means to you.

As usual, Tinseltown executives will stack their careers on the money - the economics of maintaining an aryan entertainment industry. Movie going audiences cannot expect Hollywood to do better, they will constantly say, "We are running a business." In actuallity these Hollywoodteurs are ruining the business of entertainment. Their mega productions are rarely entertaining, as they are loud, chaotic, senseless -- not to mention sexist, racist and unoriginal.

It is up to Asians, Latins, Hispanics, Blacks, Mixed Race, Multi-Ethnic and Euro-Americans to shut this Hollywood down. If governments can be over thrown and toppled via the internet; it is now time for prejudice, racist, Aryan, discriminating Hollywood to be cut off from our greenbacks.

If you do not pay for it. If you do not support it. Billions of dollars will not continued to be invested Hollywood's aryan cinema.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Man Who Copied

Greenlight is a term used in Hollwoodteur circles proclaiming success in getting financing to produce a film project. Recently I read about a Brazilian film from first time director Jorge Furtado called O Homem que Copiava. After seeing The Man Who Copied - English title, I was pleasantly surprised the film got the greenlight.

André Macie (Lázaro Ramos), a young man who works in a photocopier shop in a southern Brazil city. From a distance, between tall apartment buildings and via binoculars, André spots and falls in love with his neighbor Sílvia (Leandra Leal), who works in a clothing store. In order to get closer to her, he decides to purchase a night gown from her shop for his mother's birthday which he can not afford - not to mention it is not his mother's birthday - at least not any time soon.

To pay for it, André begins photocopying money, which quickly spirals out of control. Once he realizes that he can get away with photocopying money, he decides to try it on a slightly larger scale. Even so, he realizes that the amount he can make by photocopying is limited and thus he looks for better ways to get money. Along the way to his next money making situation André employees his sexy co-worker Marinês, one of her dates Cardoso and his criminal minded childhood buddy Feitosa.

The Man Who Copied takes a few unexpected plot twists and turns and André and the gang are involved with a bank heist, an apartment explosion, a lottery winning and two deaths all on their way to a rich new life in Rio de Janerio.

Copied is the perfect movie for Hollywoodteurs to remake - although I see tons of references in recent cool indie films such as 500 Days of Summer, it has all the elements of a great Hollywood film. Unfortunately Hollywoodteurs can only see and recognize one Brazilian film in their lifetime and for now, that is the multi Oscar nominated mega millions generating Cidade de Deus (City of God).

Friday, June 3, 2011

This is Lovely & Wicked!

Looks like Melissa Marr's highly popular wicked teen faery novel series has been given the greenlight by Universal with Mary Harron set to direct Wicked Lovely with sporadic Hollywoodteur Vince Vaughn producing the big screen adaptation.

The plot revolves around a young teen named Aislinn, who has seen dangerous faeries her entire life but has managed to survive by adhering to a strict set of rules that have kept her safe. That was until now. At 17, Aislinn finds herself torn between a seductive faery king and the mortal she loves. She must go against everything she was taught in order to confront a world she was raised to fear.

Caroline Thompson (Edward Scissorhands) wrote the script. Vaughn, Victoria Vaughn and Peter Billingsley are producing for Wild West Picture Show Productions. Marr has written five books in the series, and the fifth and final title, Darkest Mercy, was published in February.

Harron, of American Pyscho fame, recently directed The Moth Diaries with Lily Cole, Sarah Bolger and Scott Speedman. Lovely reads like a gamine Harry Potter with potential for yet another Hollywoodteur movie franchise with crossed branding and marketing opportunities galore via exploits of a young adult literary series.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Tarzan Set To Swing Again

Craig Brewer has inked a deal to write and direct a new installment of Tarzan for Warner Bros. To be told over three films as outlined by Brewer, Hollywoodteur studio Warner Bros is pleased to grant the greenlight to a potential lucrative trilogy while keeping its bottomline under control by streamlining the production.

Warner Bros has been stymied watching several attempts to relaunch the Edgar Rice Burroughs's infamous jungle fable. Screenwriter Adam Cozad has been working on a script that tells a different version of the man raised by apes in the jungles of Africa from infancy. Cozad's recent work includes the Jack Ryan reboot and Archangel, the pic that has Tron: Legacy's Joseph Kosinski attached.

How the studio decides which film to make remains to be seen, but clearly Warner Bros is determined to revive a live action Tarzan with budding Hollywoodteur, Brewer, who is in demand after directing the remake of Footloose for Paramount, and chose this over other opportunities. Hollywoodteur Jerry Weintraub is producing with Alan Riche and Tony Ludwig. Tarzan has been a fixture of films since the Depression, not of the current post Bush era, but the 1930s, most notably in the series of films that starred Olympic swimmer Johnny Weismuller.

Brewer, whose Footloose will be released October 14th, last directed Black Snake Moan and Hustle & Flow.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Jackie Robinson Biopic Slides In

Jack Roosevelt "Jackie" Robinson was the first Black Major League Baseball (MLB) player of the modern era. In 1947, Robinson broke the baseball color line when he debuted with the Brooklyn Dodgers. As the first black man to play in the major leagues since the 1880s, he was instrumental in bringing an end to racial segregation in professional baseball.

Now, Legendary Pictures has announced it has made a deal to collaborate with the estate of Jackie Robinson and his widow Rachel on a feature biopic about the Brooklyn Dodgers second baseman who broke Major League Baseball's color line. Brian Helgeland will write the script and direct the film. Legendary chairman and Hollywoodteur Thomas Tull will produce with former Walt Disney Studios exec, Dick Cook serving as an executive producer and Hollywoodteur insider on the film.

Hollywood has long been interested in bringing Robinson's story to the screen. Spike Lee once tried to direct a version with Denzel Washington in the lead role. Robert Redford has for years tried to tackle the story from the vantage point of Branch Rickey, the Brooklyn Dodgers executive who signed Robinson to the team. Both Cook and Tull are also big baseball fans, which led to Cook involving himself in the picture and getting the greenlight for via Legendary's deal at Warner Bros.

Robinson's speed, defense and hitting ability made him a Hall of Famer, but the core the film is his discipline and quiet determination. In not reacting to the taunts and threats of racist fans and fellow ballplayers, Robinson opened the door for other Black stars who followed him, like Larry Doby and Roy Campanella. His legacy goes way beyond hitting statistics. Tull said, "The legacy he left on history, society and the sport of baseball is one that will never be forgotten, and we are pleased to tell this amazing story of a true American hero."

While other Jackie Robinson projects stalled, Tull has the passion and capability to fund any film he cares about. Known mostly in Hollywoodteur circles for being a co-financier and producer of The Hangover Part II, Inception, The Dark Knight Rises and Man of Steel, lately Legendary has been gravitating to movies about icons. A recent film about iconic 60s rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix was halted when Tull could not get the Hendrix estate on board, even though Paul Greengrass was lined up to direct with The Hurt Locker's Anthony Mackie poised to star.

Sounds like pure Oscar potential here. Anthony Mackie should be able to knock this Jackie biopic right out of the baseball.