Now playing in theaters is one of the best films of the year, Joel and Ethan Coen‘s Inside Llewyn Davis. The story takes place in the Greenwich Village folk scene in 1961, and follows singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) as he struggles with his career and strained personal relationships. Loaded with incredible performances, an all-star cast (featuring Carey Mulligan, Justin Timberlake, John Goodman, Garrett Hedlund, F. Murray Abraham, Adam Driver, Stark Sands, and Max Casella), and a fantastic soundtrack (put together by T-Bone Burnett), Inside Llewyn Davis should not be missed. For more on the film, read Matt’s review.
At the Los Angeles press day, I landed a video interview with Oscar Isaac. He talked about what it was like working for the Coen Brothers, how he felt landing the role, what it was like performing the songs and how much changed along the way, and more. In addition, Isaac talked about working with Alex Garland on Ex Machina and William Monahan on Mojave. Hit the jump to watch.
We’ve reported on William Monahan‘s Mojave for a couple years, but he’s been working on it for much longer. In a recent interview, the Oscar-winning screenwriter (The Departed) said his second directorial feature was written “part time and on weekends for about 10 years now.” He finally got it finished, filmed it, and now the first three images have been released. The film centers on a near-suicidal artist (Garrett Hedlund) who escapes into the desert to take an existential crisis head-on, only to encounter a doppelganger-like antagonist in the form of a brilliant, homicidal drifter (Oscar Isaac). Monahan mulled over selling the script and came to the conclusion that rather than “let it go be distorted and made improperly” he would do the right thing and just make it myself and forego the money.”
Hit the jump for more. The film also stars Walton Goggins and Louise Bourgoin. Mojave is currently making the rounds at the American Film Market to pick up distribution.
Though they only just finished working together on the Navy SEAL thriller Lone Survivor, director Peter Berg and actor Mark Wahlberg are already planning a reunion project. Fresh off a new adaptation by Oscar-winning The Departed screenwriter William Monahan, Wahlberg has become attached to star in American Desperado with Berg directing. The book is based on a series of interviews between Generation Kill author/journalist Evan Wright and super-criminal Jon Roberts, the focus of the documentary Cocaine Cowboys.
Roberts’ life story can be filed under “stranger than fiction,” as he recounts being born into Mafia royalty, running guns for the CIA, smuggling cocaine for the Medellin cartel, and brushing elbows with the likes of Richard Pryor and Jimi Hendrix. Hit the jump for more on the project.
William Monahan is adding yet another project to his slate. The Oscar-winning The Departed scribe is currently prepping his next directorial outing Mojave, starring Jason Clarke and Oscar Isaac, but Deadline now reports that he’s also been tapped to pen the screenplay for the next John le Carré adaptation. Monahan is in advanced talks to adapt the Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy author’s upcoming novel A Delicate Truth, which tells the story of a spy who is trying to uncover the truth behind a counter-terrorist operation that presumably went according to plan. BBC Films is developing the adaptation, but there’s no timetable for when the pic might get in front of cameras.
In addition to Mojave and A Delicate Truth, Monahan is also penning a remake of Park Chan-wook’s Sympathy for Lady Vengeance for Charlize Theron to star and he also penned the remake of The Gambler, which has Todd Phillpps attached to direct. Hit the jump for the full synopsis for A Delicate Truth and to watch the book trailer.
One of my favorite films of 2012, director Kathryn Bigelow’s drama about the hunt for Osama bin Laden, Zero Dark Thirty, is finally playing in theaters nationwide. Loaded with amazing performances, an incredible script by Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker), and perfect direction, Zero Dark Thirty should definitely be seen in a theater, and it’s absolutely worth the price of admission. In the film, Jessica Chastain plays a CIA operative spearheading the manhunt, and she stars alongside Kyle Chandler, Jason Clarke, Chris Pratt, Mark Strong, Scott Adkins, Joel Edgerton, and James Gandolfini. For more on the film, read Matt’s review.
During the Los Angeles press day, I got to speak with Clarke. We talked about what the last few years have been like since he’s landed some high profile projects, the way people are responding to the film, his reaction to seeing the film for the first time, deleted scenes, and more. In addition, we also talked about some of his upcoming projects like Roland Emmerich’s White House Down and William Monahan’s next film, Mojave. Hit the jump to watch.
The ever-busy William Monahan is looking to dip his toe into the world of television. The Oscar-winning The Departed scribe is currently gearing up to direct his second feature film, Mojave, with Oscar Isaac and Jason Clarke in the lead roles, and now word comes that he’s poised to delve into pay-cable TV as well. THR reports that Monahan is developing the 1960s Britain-set drama Crime for Starz. Monahan will write the script, and the project is described as “a study of criminal enterprises and scandal across 1960s Britain.”
Crime was originally developed as a feature film from a treatment by Vanessa Sadler, but Monahan will take the reins to turn the property into a television series. The scribe has been keeping plenty busy as of late, recently signing on to pen a remake of Park Chan-wook’s 2005 film Sympathy for Lady Vengeance as a star vehicle for Charlize Theron. He also penned the sequel Sin City: A Dame to Kill For and a remake of The Gambler.
Just a couple of days ago, we ran an exclusive interview with The Departed screenwriter William Monahan regarding the news that he’s set to pen a remake of Park Chan-wook’s 2005 film Sympathy for Lady Vengeance with Charlize Theron in the lead. In addition to talking about that adaptation, Monahan provided a brief update on his next directorial feature, Mojave. While he was remiss to provide plot details, he revealed that filming is set to begin in the first quarter of next year and that he has already set his cast. Indeed, the news broke today that Oscar Isaac (The Bourne Legacy) and Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty) are poised to topline the thriller. Hit the jump for more details.
A few days ago we reported screenwriter William Monahan (The Departed, Kingdom of Heaven) was going to adapt Park Chan-wook’s fantastic 2005 film Sympathy for Lady Vengeance with Charlize Theron set to star and produce along with Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures. For those unfamiliar with the original, Lady Vengeance “is the story of a woman who for reasons of her own completes a prison term for a murder she did not commit, reemerging to punish the killer, and avenge the dead.” The film is the final chapter in Park’s “Vengeance Trilogy” following Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance and Oldboy.
Shortly after the news broke, I reached out to Monahan to see if he could offer us any additional information about how the project came together. In addition, we talked about whether he’s started writing it yet, if Sympathy could take place in Boston, whether it would be watered down for American audiences, when did he first see Park Chan-wook’s movies and does he have a favorite, his adapting process and much more. Finally, as we reported earlier this year, Monahan is set to get behind the camera again with Mojave. He told me he starts to shoot early next year and we’ll hear about casting in the coming weeks. Hit the jump for more.
With Spike Lee‘s remake of Oldboy well underway, Hollywood is turning its eye to remaking another Park Chan-wook film. Annapurna Pictures has sent out a press release announcing that it will remake Park’s excellent 2005 film Sympathy for Lady Vengeance with Charlize Theron set to star and produce. For those unfamiliar with the original, Lady Vengeance “is the story of a woman who for reasons of her own completes a prison term for a murder she did not commit, reemerging to punish the killer, and avenge the dead.” The film is the final chapter in Park’s “Vengeance Trilogy” following Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance and Oldboy. While Oldboy is my favorite of the three, Lady Vengeance is a close second. Theron is a strong choice for the lead role, and I’m curious to see what Oscar-winner William Monahan (The Departed) will do with the script. The press release says he’s “adapting” the original, but that could mean he’ll serve as both writer and director or as the writer only. He previously directed London Boulevard and will next direct Mojave.
Hit the jump for the press release along with the trailer for Park’s Sympathy for Lady Vengeance (a.k.a. Lady Vengeance).
Though he’s currently gearing up to direct the comedy sequel The Hangover Part III in September, director Todd Phillips is planning on trying his hand at a straight drama in the near future. THR reports that Phillips is in talks to direct the crime drama The Gambler, a remake of the 1974 film of the same name starring James Caan. The Paramount project previously had Martin Scorsese attached to direct with Leonardo DiCaprio circling the starring role, but it now appears that Scorsese has left the remake. Hit the jump for more details.
The first official synopsis for TRON: Legacy director Joseph Kosinski’s sci-fi pic Oblivion has landed online. The film is described as “an original and groundbreaking cinematic event,” and Tom Cruise stars as one of the last remaining drone repairman stationed on a future Earth. He works as part of a mission to extract vital resources from the ground following a decades-long war with a threat known as the Scavs, which lead to humans moving civilization to the skies thousands of feet above. When Cruise’s character rescues a beautiful stranger (Andrea Riseborough) from a downed spacecraft, events are set in motion that force him to “question everything he knows and puts the fate of humanity in his hands.”
It’s an ambitious follow-up to the (visually) spectacular TRON: Legacy, and having Cruise onboard as the lead is a major plus. The synopsis release also notes that Kosinski is shooting Oblivion in digital 4K resolution in the U.S. and Iceland. The supporting cast includes Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Olga Kurylenko, Melissa Leo, and Morgan Freeman. Oblivion hits theaters on April 26th, 2013. Hit the jump to read the full synopsis.
The first crop of set photos debuted today from director Joseph Kosinski’s Oblivion, starring Tom Cruise and Olga Kurylenko. Though the plot of the sci-fi pic features Cruise as a veteran soldier banished to the surface of a ruined, post-apocalyptic world, these images are fairly bright and sunny (okay, maybe a little rainy) with a lot of smiling faces and intact infrastructure in the background. Are these pre-apocalyptic scenes from the opening of the film, a flashback within the story or just stars coming to work and smiling at the waiting cameras? Hard to tell at this point. It’s also hard to tell exactly what this film is about without an official synopsis. Hit the jump for more on the story of Oblivion and a look at the first set photos. [Update: We've removed the unofficial images.]
Dimension Films has set the release date for Sin City: A Dame to Kill For. In a press release, the studio announced that Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller‘s sequel to Sin City will open in 3D on October 4, 2013. The press release also confirms that Mickey Rourke will return to play Marv (because A Dame to Kill For is really more a prequel than a sequel), and adds that Jessica Alba will reprise her role as Nancy Callahan. We previously reported that Rosario Dawson would be returning at Gail, but the press release makes no mention of the actress. Rodriguez and Miller co-wrote the screenplay with Oscar-winning screenwriter Willliam Monahan (The Departed). Dimension says, “The script and details of the film’s story are being kept tightly under wraps,” but you can find a synopsis for Miller’s graphic novel after the jump.
Currently, the only other film set to be released on October 4, 2013 is Henry Selick‘s untitled animated film.
Oscar-winning screenwriter William Monahan (The Departed) has chosen to make the crime thriller Mojave as his follow-up to London Boulevard. As Monahan told Steve back in October, the follow-up to Boulevard was either going to be Mojave or Becket, an adaptation of the 1959 Jean Anouilh play, depending on which project received funding first. Hopefully, more details on Mojave will surface soon so we’ll have an idea of what Monahan has planned. According to Deadline, Atlas Independent will produce, and filming is set to begin in August in Southern California. Atlas Independent’s mission is to make movies for less than $10 million, so we at least have some notion of the Mojave‘s scope.
Monahan’s busy schedule also includes scripting a remake of 1974′s The Gambler, and working on the screenplay for Sin City 2. Click here for Steve’s latest interview with Monahan.
A few weeks ago, I ran an extended interview with writer/director William Monahan for his directorial debut London Boulevard (now on VOD and in theaters this weekend in limited release). Starring Colin Farrell, Keira Knightley, Anna Friel, Jamie Bower, David Thewlis, Ray Winstone, Stephen Graham, Eddie Marsan, and Ben Chaplin, the film is about a man just released from prison (Farrell) who falls in love with a reclusive young movie star (Knightley) and finds himself in a duel with a vicious gangster (Winstone). During our wide ranging conversation, we covered everything from his thoughts on VOD and what changes were made to the film for its domestic release, the digital revolution, the crime genre, writing dialogue, and working with actors. In addition, he gave me updates on The Departed sequel/prequel, Sin City 2, The Gambler, Tripoli, Becket, Mojave (which might be his next film), and revealed there is another version of Kingdom of Heaven that no one has seen.
However, the same day we did that interview, I did another one with Monahan, except the second conversation included Colin Farrell. Rather than ask the same junket type questions, we spent a large portion of our time talking about what got them both into making movies, and their favorite actors and directors. After being movie nerds, we then talked about their first meeting, the script, how they found Farrell’s character, filming in London, and rehearsals. Additionally, Farrell talked a bit about Martin McDonagh‘s Seven Psychopaths and Total Recall. Hit the jump for more.