If you were going to remake a classic film noir by one of the world’s greatest directors, whom would you pick to write the adaptation? That’s the question faced by Mike Nichols, who’s next project is an update of Akira Kurosawa’s classic High and Low. And his answer? According to BlackVoices, it’s Chris Rock. That’s right: the writer of I Think I Love My Wife is adapting Kurosawa.
Kurosawa’s original 1963 film is about a businessman who must decide whether he will give up his substantial life savings in order to save his chauffer’s kidnapped son. It’s a tense, intelligent drama, not exactly the kind of work Rock is know for. One has to assume that he will not be attempting to create a modern noir, but that he will be turning it into some kind of comedy.
Hit the jump for my thoughts on Rock taking this surprising gig.
“Survival isn’t just for the living.” So says the tagline for Survival of the Dead, the most recent addition to George Romero’s zombie oeuvre. It’s a great premise.
Romero effectively created the zombie genre with Night of the Living Dead (1968) and Dawn of the Dead (1978). But it was with 1985′s Day of the Dead that he introduced the unique notion that the living dead could rise above their mindless craving for human flesh and could relearn human behaviour. Twenty years later, when he finally made a fourth Dead movie – 2005′s Land of the Dead - he expounded further on that idea, going so far as to make his signature black hero a zombie instead of a living human. More after the jump:
A 5 minute clip from Exit Through the Gift Shop, the first film by graffiti artist Banksy, has been released. You may not be familiar with the name Banksy, but you’ve almost certainly seen pictures of his street art before. His style – which is based mostly on creating graffiti through the use of stencils – is very distinctive, provocative and often beautiful.
Exit Through the Gift Shop is a documentary about a video-obsessed Frenchman named Thierry Guetta with a love for street art who tried to make a film about the secretive Banksy. Bansky, however found Guetta to be more fascinating than himself and turned the cameras around on the would-be filmmaker.
The resulting movie – which has no credited director – debuted at the Sundance Film Festival this year. It is narrated by Rhys Ifans. You can watch the five-minute clip after the jump.
Have you ever had the dream/nightmare of having to relive your teenage years? If you could take a lifetime of knowledge back with you to your days in high school, what would you do differently? Those are the questions posed by Alex Robinson’s 2008 graphic novel Too Cool to Be Forgotten. The Harvey Award winning novel tells the story of a 40-year-old man who attempts to break his life-long smoking habit through hypnosis, only to find himself transported back into his 15 year old body.
In January producer Anthony Bregman (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) and a business partner bought a 33% share in Top Shelf Productions, the publisher of Too Cool. This arrangement gives Bregman’s production company, Likely Story, a first look deal for all screen adaptations of Top Shelf’s library. Too Cool is set to be Likely Story’s first Top Shelf adaptation and according to Pajiba, it now seems that comedian David Wain is interested in directing the movie.
No word yet on who might be up for the lead role or when production might begin. We’ll keep you informed as we learn more.
A new, Red Band Trailer for George A. Romero’s Survival of the Dead has hit the net thanks to IGN. Romero, of course, is the godfather of zombie movies. His groundbreaking debut, Night of the Living Dead, was not the first zombie movie ever made, but its unique blend of horror and social commentary solidified zombie movies as a viable genre.
Unlike most genre filmmakers, Romero has never been content to just copy his original ad infinitum; instead every zombie movie he makes is thematically and stylistically different from those that have come before. This approach is sometimes quite successful (Dawn of the Dead) and sometimes less so (Diary of the Dead). With Survival of the Dead, Romero looks at what happens when the undead become pawns in a Hatfield-McCoy type feud. It’s a premise with great promise and I really hope he hits this one out of the park.
See the new trailer and read the synopsis after the jump.
Still riding high on his multiple Academy Award nominations, breakout director Lee Daniels (Precious) has been busy putting together the cast for his next picture, Selma. The movie will focus on the pivotal Civil Rights march which Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. led from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965.
Over the past few weeks Daniels has confirmed that Hugh Jackman and Lenny Kravitz will play key roles in Selma. And today MTV is reporting that Liam Neeson and Cedric the Entertainer have also joined the cast. Neeson will be playing President Lyndon Johnson, and Cedric will portray Ralph Abernathy, who helped King to organize the march.
The role of Dr. King will be played by David Oyelowo (The Last King of Scottland). The role of Alabama Governor George Wallace has not yet been cast, but is expected to be filled soon. It was presumed that Robert De Niro would play the role, but MTV says his collaboration with Daniels will likely not be with this project.
Despite lackluster ratings, HBO has ordered a second season of The Ricky Gervais Show. Michael Lombardo, president of HBO programming, told the BBC that it was renewing the show because it has “sparked a loyal and enthusiastic following that is growing steadily.”
The show adds animation to old audio from Gervais’ record-breaking podcasts. Also appearing with Gervais are Stephen Merchant, Gervais’ longtime collaborator (The Office, Extras), and Karl Pilkington, whose nonsensical musings have caused Gervais to dub him “a global village idiot”.
Gervais and Merchant’s first film collaboration, Cemetery Junction, will be released in the UK on April 14th.
“Pioneer Woman” Ree Drummond had made out quite well by writing about her shift from life in LA to life on a cattle ranch in Oklahoma. Her blog, thepioneerwoman.com, gets 2 million unique readers a month and her cookbook was a NY Times #1 best seller. But now she’s headed back to Hollywood – or at least her story is. Deadline has reported that Columbia Pictures is developing Drummond’s story into a potential romcom vehicle for Reese Witherspoon.
Pioneer Woman is sure to center around Drummond’s relationship with “Marlboro Man”, the cowboy she fell in love with and changed her life to be with.
The Battlestar Galactica spinoff Caprica has been getting weak ratings and only average reviews, but Syfy is anxious to keep expanding its Galactica francise. In an interview with THR, Syfy’s Executive VP of Development Mark Stern indicated that Caprica would receive a second season and that the network was also trying to develop a second Galactica spinoff. The exact nature of the spinoff has not yet been determined, but it would:
“mark a return to the franchise’s space-opera roots.”
Galactica Executive Producer Ronald Moore is working with Syfy on developing the new series, which may have a non-traditional format. More as we hear it.
Start with Leonardo da Vinci, throw in some cryptic codes and secret societies, and end with heaping helping of angels and demons. Sound like the recipe for a new Dan Brown novel? Guess again, it’s Warner Bros. latest effort to fictionalize history.
According to THR, WB has picked up a treatment for Leonardo da Vinci and the Soldiers of Forever by producer Adrian Askarieh. The premise is really quite logical – since Da Vinci was a great painter, sculptor, inventor, scientist, musician, architect and writer, it only stands to reason that he must have been a great action hero, too.
Askarieh – whose credits include Hitman and the upcoming Jonny Quest -will be producing with Roy Lee and Doug Davison (The Departed). No screenwriter has been chosen yet. In addition to da Vinci, Warners is also working on fantastical stories about King Arthur (directed by Guy Ritchie) and Marco Polo (Francis Lawrence).