Sony Pictures Classics has acquired the North American and Eastern European rights to director Ramin Bahrani’s At Any Price. Dennis Quaid stars as an ambitious farmer who is a father to a rebellious son (Zac Efron) with aspirations of race car driving. An investigation into the family business brings the pair together in order to preserve their livlihood.
In other acquisition news, Drafthouse Films has picked up North American rights to Wrong, from Quentin Dupieux (Rubber). The picture centers on Dolph Springer (Jack Plotnick), a man embarking on a metaphysical journey to find his lost dog, while encountering strange characters along the way. Hit the jump for more on both projects.
After a rough pre-production period, filming is finally underway on Oscar-winner Gore Verbinski‘s adaptation of The Lone Ranger. More importantly, Disney has released the first synopsis for the movie. It’s not big on details, but the gist is that Tonto (Johnny Depp) talks about how he teamed up with John Reid (aka the Lone Ranger; played by Armie Hammer) and how they bonded during their adventures. It’s an origin story/buddy movie, and that seems like a fine approach to the material. The devil is in the details, but we shouldn’t expect on hearing those for quite some time.
Hit the jump for the press release which includes the full text of the synopsis. The film also stars Tom Wilkinson, William Fichtner, Barry Pepper, James Badge Dale, Ruth Wilson, and Helena Bonham Carter. The Lone Ranger opens May 31, 2013.
Production is currently underway on director Gore Verbinski’s big-budget iteration of The Lone Ranger, and a last minute casting addition has been made. Given that the film was put on hold for a bit while Verbinski and Disney retooled the budget, the production schedule was pushed back. As a result, Dwight Yoakam was forced to drop out of the pic last week. While I’m sad to see Yoakam go, I think Verbinski’s found a suitable replacement. Deadline reports that William Fichtner (Drive Angry) will fill the bad guy role that Yoakam had previously been set to play.
Fichtner is a terrific character actor who’s had memorable turns in everything from The Dark Knight to Black Hawk Down. Johnny Depp is set as Tonto with Armie Hammer playing the titular Ranger. Fichtner joins a cast that now includes Helena Bonham Carter, Ruth Wilson, James Frain, and Tom Wilkinson. The actor recently wrapped a role in Neill Blomkamp’s Elysium opposite Matt Damon. The Lone Ranger opens May 31st.
While most everyone’s eyes are on Kathryn Bigelow’s (The Hurt Locker) untitled drama about the hunt for Osama Bin Laden, another film about the Navy SEAL team tasked with bringing the terrorist leader down has assembled its cast. Variety reports that Anson Mount (TV’s Hell on Wheels), Cam Gigandet (Twilight), Freddy Rodriguez (Planet Terror), and William Fichtner (Black Hawk Down) are set to star in Code Name: Geronimo. John Stockwell (Turistas) is onboard to direct the actioner from a script by Kendall Lampkin.
Mount plays “an agile and assured member of SEAL Team Six,” and Kathleen Robertson is set as an eager CIA case officer. I’m not entirely sure we need two movies about the hunt for Bin Laden, and Bigelow’s definitely has the edge here. It’s her first film since winning the Best Director and Best Picture Oscar for The Hurt Locker and she’s assembled a very impressive cast (including Joel Edgerton, Jessica Chastain, and Chris Pratt). Bigelow’s film is set to open this December, but Code Name: Geronimo doesn’t seem to have a release date yet. Geronimo is currently filming in New Mexico.
In 2010, Quentin Dupieux‘s Rubber hit screen to critical acclaim. The acclaim was mostly along the lines of “The best killer tire movie you’ll ever see.” Despite its odd-ball premise and protagonist, Rubber did seem to have cohesive subtext about criticizing the audience and purposely messing with their expectations. By contrast, Dupieux’s new movie, Wrong, is all killer tire and hardly anything to say. That’s doesn’t make it a bad flick. Strangeness along the lines of a killer tire can still be pretty funny, and Wrong‘s off-kilter reality offers plenty of laughs. It’s just too silly and devoted to strangeness to make any an exploration of a convoluted subtext worth considering.
Writer/director Quentin Dupeiux made some noise on the 2010 festival circuit when he unleashed Rubber, alternately wowing and perplexing the varied audiences of Cannes, Toronto, and Fantastic Fest. The hyper-meta movie about a tire who kills people is right in my wheelhouse of movies that talk incessantly about their own structure; ultimately, it never quite connected, but marked Dupeiux as a filmmaker to watch.
The next Dupeiux film to watch for is Wrong, which will premiere as part of the World Cinema Dramatic Competition lineup at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. A teaser trailer has been posted online, and promises that Wrong—led by Jack Plotnick, Eric Judor, Alexis Dziena, Steve Little, and William Fichtner—will strive to out-strange Rubber. Watch for yourself after the jump.
David Duchovy has joined the cast of the indie thriller Phantom. The film is set on a Soviet submarine during the Cold War and stars Ed Harris, William Fichtner, and Natascha McElhone. Variety reports that Duchovny is replacing Andy Garcia as the leader of the Soviet Special Forces team who is forced to head up a mission cloaked in secrecy. Todd Robinson (White Squall) wrote the script and is directing the indie which will shoot next month in Long Beach, California. RCR Media is co-financing and producing the flick, with Sony Pictures Worldwide handling domestic distribution. Duchovny recently wrapped the latest season of Showtime’s Californication and the indie comedy Goats.
There is an art to camp. It’s not enough to simply have the director wink to the audience and say “Yeah, we know this is terrible, but we’re having dumb fun so laugh god-dammit.“ Just because you’re making something trashy, doesn’t mean you have the license to give up quality filmmaking. Director Patrick Lussier understands the difference between trashy filmmaking and trashy fun and that’s the reason his film Drive Angry is such a delight. The script is unapologetically dumb, everything is cranked up to 11, and while everyone is clearly having a good time, no one is slacking off. That’s the art to Drive Angry and it’s why it will likely build a devoted cult following in the years to come.
I like to dream of an alternate universe where Drive Angry did well at the box office and stardom finally comes to terrific character actor William Fichtner. Sadly, I don’t live in that universe, but that doesn’t mean Fichtner’s disappearing into obscurity. Variety reports that Fichtner is in talks to join Contact co-star Jodie Foster as well as Matt Damon, Wagner Moura, and Sharlto Copley in Neill Blomkamp’s Elysium. Details on the plot remain under wraps, but the story takes place in the distant future on another planet. The film will also feature the kind of social allegory of Blomkamp’s breakthrough film District 9 but on a much larger scale.
Elysium is due out March 8, 2013.
The first trailer for The Big Bang has hit the web. Directed by Tony Krantz (Otis), the film stars Antonio Banderas as a private detective who is hired to find a missing stripper. That’s about all the plot I’m able to boil down because, judging from the tilt-heavy trailer, this flick looks to be a bit of a mind-bender in the vein of Richard Kelly’s Southland Tales.
Hit the jump to check out the trailer. The Big Bang stars Banderas, William Fichtner, James Van Der Beek, Snoop Dogg, Delroy Lindo and Rebecca Mader. Anchor Bay Films is set to release the film on May 13th.
With Patrick Lussier’s (My Bloody Valentine 3D) revenge thriller Drive Angry 3D getting released today, I was able to interview most of the cast earlier this week. Here’s Nicolas Cage & Amber Heard and Billy Burke. Since we’ve been covering the film since its inception, most of you know it’s about a felon (Cage) who is chasing the people who killed his daughter (Burke) and kidnapped her baby. The vendetta/rescue spins out of control and the chase gets bloodier by the mile, leaving bodies everywhere. Chasing Cage is someone called “the accountant”, and he’s played by William Fichtner who steals the movie with his performance.
During my interview with Fichtner, we talked about how the film compared to what he thought it would be, the action, filming in 3D and working with the cameras, what films/TV shows do people always want to talk to him about (I mentioned Contact and Go), and he told me a great story about how the suit he wears in the film is actually his that he brought to set. Hit the jump to watch:
Patrick Lussier’s (My Bloody Valentine 3D) revenge thriller Drive Angry 3D hits theaters this weekend, and Summit has sent over 5 clips from the film. The flick stars Nicolas Cage, Amber Heard, David Morse and William Fichtner and tells the story of a tough-as-nails criminal who breaks out of Hell on a quest for redemption. Hit the jump to check out the clips and you can click here for all our previous coverage which includes on set interviews and a lot more.
Until the Academy loosens up about bullets, boobs, and inexplicable Nicolas Cage hairpieces, we can only dream of a fantastical world where Drive Angry 3D has a shot at Best Picture nomination. Still, the marketing folks behind the movie decided to have a little laugh and give the movie a red-band trailer with all of the prestige of an Oscar film and none of the dignity.
Hit the jump to check out the NSFW red-band trailer. Drive Angry 3D also stars Amber Heard and William Fichtner. The film opens February 25th.
With director Patrick Lussier’s (My Bloody Valentine) 3D revenge flick Drive Angry 3D getting released February 25, Summit has released a very cool motion poster to help promote the flick. Starring Nicolas Cage, Amber Heard, William Fichtner, Billy Burke, and David Morse, Drive Angry 3D is about a tough as nails criminal (Cage) who breaks out of Hell on a quest for redemption. Fichtner plays a character simply named “The Accountant”, a mysterious demonic agent sent to retrieve Cage and return him to the fiery depths from which he came. I did a set visit last year and everything I learned while there tells me this is going to be an extremely fun ride that you’re going to want to take.
For a taste of what’s to come, watch this NSFW clip. Otherwise, hit the jump to check out the poster, or click here for all our previous coverage.
We earned enough tokens for a Drive Angry poster earlier today, and apparently have enough left over for a brand new trailer. The 3D revenge flick stars Nicolas Cage, Amber Heard, William Fichtner, Billy Burke, and David Morse, and serves as director Patrick Lussier’s follow-up to My Bloody Valentine. The film hits 3D theaters February 11, 2011; hit the jump to check out the trailer.