Yesterday In Contention‘s Kris Tapley wrote that “a release-date bump” for Martin Scorsese‘s Wolf of Wall Street (Paramount, 11.15) “is looking very likely.” Paramount execs saw the first cut last weekend “but almost no one has seen it yet as [Scorsese] has been hard at work whittling down a typically massive first cut (with elements that would easily yield an NC-17 rating, by the way). But does it go to 2014 or to December?”
2014? Who’s saying that? A eunuch? If Paramount distribution execs are actually pondering a bump into next year (and I’m not presuming anything at this stage), they need to grim up and conduct themselves like persons of character and conviction. Having read and really enjoyed Terence Winter‘s Wolf script, I know what this film more or less is — Goodfellas/Casino meets Wall Street. Or, if you will, the conclusion of Scorsese’s Rise and Fall Of A Flamboyant American Criminal trilogy. Any talk about concerns over a possible NC-17 rating is totally candy-ass, in my view. From what little I know of editing an R rating is certainly achievable.
The MPAA’s provincial-minded, ninny-nanny rating system serves a certain political purpose, yes, but when the doors are closed and people are honest with each other it is spoken of with nothing but contempt. It lies at the bottom of the brass spittoon.
Winter’s script contains numerous depictions of and references to the usual sexual couplings plus lots of drug use and profanity blah blah…and so what? This is/was the world that Jordan Belfort conducted or inhabited. It’s an epic capturing (the script seemed as blunt and graphic as Goodfellas and Casino but not any more so), and if the film goes on for two and a half or three hours, fine. Let it breathe, let it sprawl, let it be what it is.