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September 11, 2009

Things That Caught My Eye This Week


What do John Wayne, aliens, hobbits and Japanese anime have in common? They all caught my eye this week...

The Dude as The Duke
Sounds like True Grit is going to be remade. By the Coen Brothers. Staring Jeff "The Dude" Bridges. Need I say more!?

George Clooney Has a Great Fall
No, not that kind of fall. Clooney has two films coming out soon, Up in the Air and The Men Who Stare at Goats. The first, from Jason Reitman (Thank You for Smoking and Juno) is a story about a man who resists real human connection, and the second is a decidedly quirky look at the world of a psychic military regiment during the Iraq War. Up in the Air is getting such great buzz that it has been pushed up to a November release. Check out those trailers.

District 9’s Sharlto Copley May Have Been Offered A Role in the A-Team
I bring this up only to shake my head in amazement at how daydreams really can come true. Did you know who Copley was before District 9? Of course you didn't. He was a non-actor and friend of the director who insisted Copley was right for the part. And now, suddenly, he is a star on the rise. It can't be called a big break when you haven't even been trying! Fairy tales can come true, it can happen to you...

The Long Road for The Road
First the mixed reviews began pouring out of the festivals about this highly anticipated film, and now it appears Dimension Films will be pushing back the release date of The Road...again...to November 25th 2009, already one of the most crowded weekends on the fall calendar. Uh oh.

Lord of the Rings Lawsuit Settled
Not that it comes as a surprise, but the final hurdle has fallen away and The Hobbit is set to surge into production.

Getting Stoned
The New York Times had an interesting interview with Oliver Stone about his upcoming sequel to his wildly popular and prescient Wall Street. But can Stone capture lighting in a bottle twice? Many are saying Michael Moore's new film, Capitalism: A Love Story, is already behind the economic times, so what will we make of another look at the financial sector which has figured so heavily into the economic news of the past year?

Akira to Become a Live-Action Movie
I just got back from Japan and had a conversation in which the idea of turning this very anime classic into a live-action film was discussed. It'll never happen, was the consensus. Don't tell that to the screenwriters behind Children of Men!

I don't know what's worse: that they are making another Rambo or that it's going to be sci-fi (warning: bad language at this link) ...


Sharlto Copley would make an AWESOME Mad Dog Murdock!

I think Akira would be good as long as the filmmakers use its story and nothing else. What I mean by that is, I just saw the Wachowski's live-action Speed Racer, and it was lots of fun, but the problem was they captured anime visual and storytelling style so perfectly that it was jarring - I couldn't reconcile the feeling of watching anime with the presence of live actors. The fun was tempered a lot by the constant awareness of how much time and money was spent for the sole purpose of making something into something that it's not. It was an interesting exercise in why different mediums exist...