Warner Bros. has decided against showing Martin Scorsese‘s The Departed (Warner Bros., 10.6) at September’s Toronto Film Festival. That’s what they told me today. No comment but do the math. It may just be a good down-to-business crime movie and that’s fine, but that’s what Steven Soderbergh’s The Limey was (to me anyway) and that played Toronto. Look at it this way: if The Departed was an “Oscar hopeful,” as Movie City News is calling it right now (Friday at 5:11 pm), wouldn’t it make sense to show it in Toronto? Of course it would. If The Departed had, say, a 12.15 release date WB might want to hold off unveiling it until early to mid-November, but The Departed‘s 10.6 release date makes it an ideal film to show at the Toronto Film Festival, which happens roughly a month earlier. Obviously WB is seeing some kind of downside in this.
Ryuichi Sakomoto‘s “Bibo No Aozora” is on the soundtrack at the end of Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu ‘s Babel, and it really sank into me — the music, the film, the whole package — when I saw it a second time on Wednesday. Here’s a YouTube video of Sakomoto playing “Bibo No Aozora.” Just a taste.
For those feeling confused about Kevin Smith‘s having announced he’s filling in for Roger Ebert on Ebert & Roeper next week only to read that Jay Leno is doing the same thing at more or less the same time, here’s the deal. Leno is taping his show with Roeper on 8.1, and this show will air the following weekend (8.4 and 8.5). Smith is taping his show on 8.4, and this will air the weekend after next (8.12 and 8.13).
A rich, extremely successful actor-director has a rep of being a bit of a conservative goony-bird, or at least a guy who’s staunchly religious and off on his his own philosophical beam. (I’m not saying it’s in any way weird to be a hardcore Catholic with a Holocaust-denying dad. It’s allowable in a free society, and if this is what works for the guy, fine.)
Let’s also say this actor doesn’t like being thought of as an oddball and wants, perhaps on a subconscious level, to let people know he’s not some ultra- Catholic tight-ass and is just as much of a flawed effed-up guy as you or me. What would be one way of doing that? If you ask me, getting popped for a DUI at 2:30 ayem is just what the doctor ordered.
Owen Wilson is officially denying any inspiration or connection on his part between the “Dupree” character he plays in You, Me and Dupree and “Cousin Dupree,” the song written and performed by Steely Dan.
Wilson didn’t address the possibility that someone else in the creatve food chain — Dupree screenwriter Mike LeSieur, let’s say — might have gotten the idea for the Dupree character from the Steely Dan song. (Read the song’s lyrics and tell me somebody’s not doing the sidestep.) Steely Dan’s Walter Becker and Donald Fagen complained about the alleged ripoff a week or so ago.
In a statement released by spokesperson Ina Treciokas, Wilson said: ”I have never heard the song ‘Cousin Dupree’ and I don’t even know who this gentleman, Mr. Steely Dan, is. I hope this helps to clear things up and I can get back to concentrating on my new movie, HEY 19.”
The trailer for Martin Scorsese‘s The Departed (Warner Bros., 10.6) is up and looking good. It hasn’t been cut to suggest that Scorsese has made something startling or “extra” — it tells you it’s probably just a good sturdy cops-and-bad guys drama about a criss-cross undercover deception. Yeah, I know: Miami Vice in Boston only doubled, and with a more colorful, charismatic bad guy (Jack Nicholson), right? But no Michael Mann-like visual flourishes, the trailer implies. Nothing too moody or off-angled or digitally artified. I wonder if they’re sending this puppy to the Toronto Film Festival? (If they aren’t, that will send a message.) An obviously kick-ass cast competing with Jack — Leonardo Di Caprio, Matt Damon, Mark Wahlberg, Martin Sheen, Alec Baldwin, Vera Farmiga, Anthony Anderson, Ray Winstone, et. al. The only not-quite right thing is DiCaprio’s crew cut — his wide, starting-to-get-heavyish, Italo-Germanic features need longish hair to sand down the edges.
Earlier this week Linday Lohan‘s rep Leslie Sloane-Zelnick said that her client hadn’t shown up for work on the set of Morgan Creek’s currently-rolling Georgia Rule and had subsequently been taken to an L.A. hospital because she was “overheated and dehydrated” because she was “filming in 105-degree weather for 12 hours.” Horseshit, Morgan Creek chief James Robinson has essentially declared in an angry 7.26 letter sent to Lohan and her reps. And now The Smoking Gun has gotten hold of a copy and posted it…good going!
In the letter, Robinson calls Lohan’s recent behavior “discourteous, irresponsible and unprofessional” and that she’s “acted like a spoiled child and in doing so [has] alienated many of [her] co-workers and endangered the quality” of Georgia Rule, a Garry Marshall family heart-warmer now being with Lohan, Jane Fonda and Felicity Huffman topping the cast. The IMDB log line says it’s about “a rebellious, uncontrollable teenager (Lohan) who is hauled off by her dysfunctional mother (Huffman) to spend the summer with her grandmother (Fonda)” and blah, blah. So Lohan’s obviously staying in character off the set.
Robinson tells Lohan that “you’re well aware that your ongoing all night heavy partying is the real reason for your so-called ‘exhaustion’” and that Morgan Creek henceforth refuses to “accept bogus excuses for your behavior.” He warns that Lohan will be held “personally accountable” for losses caused by her actions. He claims that Lohan’s behavior has already “resulted in hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage” and that Morgan Creek may sue her unless she straightens up and flies right. “I urge you to take this letter seriously and conduct yourself professionally,” Robinson concludes.
There are probably thousands who aren’t getting what that 8.4.06 EW cover with Samuel L. Jackson [three or four items below] is about. It’s a little obscure if you’re not a Frank Sinatra fan as well as a bit of a vinyl freak, but it’s a riff on the cover art for Sinatra’s 1957 Capitol album “Come Fly With Me.”
MSNBC’s Dave White explains the appeal of star Colin Farrell: “[He] has a sex tape that is the only commonly seen denominator among the friends I talked to [about him for this article]. And a party-hard rep. And subsequently a stint in rehab under his belt at 30. And his own shrine on the gossip websites. And tabloid stories of him bedding more famous women than just about anyone of his generation.
“But whether those stories are true or not isn’t the point. There’s not a shred of soft ambiguity about him. No Rob-Lowe-in-the-’80s androgyny. He doesn’t have occasional gay rumors popping up. He could get you pregnant. Or give you an STD. His fingernails could be dirty. The gritty sensuality he displays onscreen whenever the camera lets him also spills over into reality. And that would be okay with us if he weren’t so pretty. But he is. So we’re terrified.”
Execs at Warner Bros, egged on the Entourage word-of-mouth factor and Endeavor agent Ari Emanuel (i.e., the real-life model for Jeremy Piven‘s Entourage agent “Ari Gold”), have had “conversations about the film rights” for Aquaman, according to L.A. Times industry-beat hotshot John Horn. (The rights are owned by DC Comics, which is owned by Time Warner Inc.) ”
Horn adds that “one top filmmaker’s name also has surfaced as a potential Aquaman director — Charlie’s Angels alumnus McG.”
That’s fine (I guess) but also kinda weird. I don;t mean to sound unhip, but I’m still under the impression that McG is the industry’s leading anti-Christ figure (followed by Michael Bay, Stephen Sommers and Roger Kumble) whose work on the two Angels was a harbinger of death, polio and Down’s Syndrome in the realm of narrative cinema…rather than, you know, a “top filmmaker.” (He’s also the candy-ass who wouldn’t fly to Australia to start work on his version of a Superman movie for WB because he’s afraid of flying…thank God.) Has McG done something lately to change this rep? Help me out here.
Otherwise, there is reason to question the sanity of anyone giving serious thought to an Aquaman feature. Reason #1: an underwater superhero is mildly cool but not that sexy. There’s just something about the glub-glub slow-mo otherness of the aquatic realm that refuses to quicken the pulse. (Unless, of course, you’re talking about that mock Entourage scene when Adrien Grenier’s Aquaman dives off the Santa Monica pier in order to somehow stop a mile-high tidal wave from destroying Los Angeles). Reason #2: Shoots on and below the water’s surface are humungously expensive…financial disasters waiting to happen.
“I will put a round precisely through your medulla ablongata which is located at the base of your brain straight through a point mid-distance between your upper lip and the bottom of your nose and you will be dead from the neck down. Your finger won’t even twitch. Do you believe that?” — catchy-immortal Miami Vice dialogue spoken by Detective Gina Callabrese (Elizabeth Rodriguez), as highlighted and celebrated by Better Than Fudge pundit Josh Horowitz.
Quote #1: ”What’s unique about Snakes is that the idea of the movie has excited people…but that doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with the movie we made. I’m hoping it does. But I just don’t know what people are expecting.” — New Line Cinema president Toby Emmerich tells Entertainment Weekly‘s Jeff Jensen in the 8.4 issue.
Quote #2: “The hepcats loved the title and had fun with it, but they never realized (or wanted to realize) what kind of film Snakes on a Plane actually was all along. And I include myself in that equation.” — from last Sunday’s (7.23) post-Comic-Con HE feature called “The Fun’s Over.”
Quote #3: “If the movie doesn’t deliver the goods, word-of-mouth will devastate the movie quicker than any bad review could” — Houston critic Joe Leydon to BCC News’ Peter Bowes in 7.28 piece.
Quote #4: “The impression I got from the short reel on Friday [at Comic-Con] is that Snakes on a Plane is maybe one-tenth as hip as the Snakes riffs we’ve all enjoyed the last three or four months on www.snakesonablog.com….if that.” — also from HE’s 7.23 article.
Quote #5: ”Honestly, I think we were worried about the same things other people were worried about. Could you take a movie called Snakes on a Plane seriously?’ It took us some time to catch up with it.” — New Line domestic marketing chief Russell Schwartz to Jensen in EW piece.
Quote #6: “The best part of Snakes on a Plane happened online in March and April. The movie couldn’t possibly live up to the hip hype, and now we’re all starting to get the idea that it indeed hasn’t. Reality has set in, o my brothers. The Snakes team and the New Line ‘creatives’ have been playing catch-up and ‘hey, can we get in on this thing?’ all along. Welcome to the world of 116 No. Robertson Blvd.” — HE 7.23 piece.