Keira Knightley plays the title character in Anna Karenina, director Joe Wright’s bold, new romantic drama adaptation of the epic Tolstoy story of forbidden love set in 1874 Imperial Russia. The film, which opens in theaters on November 16th, marks the acclaimed director’s third collaboration with the Academy Award-nominated actress and also stars Jude Law and Aaron Taylor-Johnson.
At the film’s Los Angeles press day, Knightley talked about what drew her to the project, what about Wright’s vision made it stand out for her, why she saw Anna Karenina as a terrifying character, how she worked with the other actresses to create the impressive on-screen chemistry for the film’s female relationships, how her costumes played a pivotal role in telling her character’s story, why her film choices are all about story rather than where or when it’s set, and how she likes period, sci-fi and fantasy films as a dramatic tool. She also explained why she decided to move away from darker period pieces and do more contemporary films that are pure entertainment including the recently completed music drama, Can a Song Save Your Life?, and the large scale Tom Clancy thriller, Jack Ryan, directed by Kenneth Branagh, in which she stars opposite Chris Pine. Hit the jump to read the full interview.
Keira Knightley plays the title character in Anna Karenina, director Joe Wright’s bold, new romantic drama adaptation of the epic Tolstoy story of forbidden love set in 1874 Imperial Russia, which marks the director’s third collaboration with the Academy Award-nominated actress. We sat down with Knightley at a roundtable interview today to talk about Anna Karenina, and while we were at it we also asked her about her upcoming projects including the Tom Clancy thriller, Jack Ryan, under the direction of Kenneth Branagh, which is currently in production.
Knightley explained why her film choices are all about story rather than where or when it’s set, how she likes period, sci-fi and fantasy films as a dramatic tool, why she decided this year to move away from darker period pieces and do a couple contemporary films that are pure entertainment including the recently completed music drama Can a Song Save Your Life? and the large scale thriller, Jack Ryan. In Jack Ryan, Knightley plays the female lead opposite Chris Pine who steps into the titular role played previously by Alex Baldwin, Harrison Ford and Ben Affleck. Hit the jump for more.
While walking the floor of the American Film Market (AFM) this morning, Steve was able to grab some images and synopses for a few upcoming films. Briefly:
- Rush – Director Ron Howard’s 1970s drama focuses on the rivalry between Formula 1 racers James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) and Niki Lauda (Daniel Bruhl). The film opens September 20th, 2013.
- Can a Song Save Your Life? – This uplifting music-centered drama comes from Once director John Carney and centers on the relationship between a struggling musician (Keira Knightley) and a music producer (Mark Ruffalo) in New York City. The cast also includes Hailee Steinfeld, Adam Levine, and Catherine Keener.
- Thérèse – This adaptation of the classic novel stars Elizabeth Olsen as a young woman trapped in an arranged marriage who conspires with her lover (Oscar Isaac) to dispose of her sickly cousin husband (Tom Felton). Jessica Lange also stars.
Hit the jump to check out images and detailed synopses for all three films.
We’ve got a few casting stories to share this afternoon. Briefly:
- Chris Pratt is in talks to star opposite Vince Vaughn in the comedy remake of Starbuck.
- Mos Def has joined Mark Ruffalo and Keira Knightley in the music-themed drama Can a Song Save Your Life?
- X-Men: First Class star Lucas Till is in talks to lead the werewolf film Wolves.
Hit the jump for more details.
What would you say to a few casting notices?:
- Catherine Keener will star opposite Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo in the music drama Can a Song Save Your Life?
- Dermot Mulroney and Josh Henderson will star in the indie thriller Swelter
- Kevin Durand joined the ever-growing cast of Devil’s Knot, a true crime drama about the West Memphis 3.
Hit the jump for details on each project.
Here’s your latest fix for relevant casting news. Check them out at a glance below:
- Cam Gigandet (Easy A) has joined Emily Browning in director Catherine Hardwicke’s Plush.
- James Corden (The History Boys) has boarded not one, but two projects: Can a Song Save Your Life? and One Chance.
- Cristin Milioti (Year of the Carnivore) is in talks to join the Martin Scorsese picture, The Wolf of Wall Street.
- David Lyons (The Cape) is the latest addition to Relativity’s romantic thriller, Safe Haven.
Hit the jump for more on each project.
We’ve got a few casting stories to share this evening. Briefly:
Hit the jump for more on each film.
Hailee Steinfeld has joined Mark Ruffalo and Scarlett Johansson in Can a Song Save Your Life?, the new film from Once director John Carney. As we previously reported, the “feel-good” romance centers on a washed-up A&R man (Ruffalo) who forms a passionate bond with a young singer-songwriter (Johansson) from out of town, and they try to help each other change their fortunes for the better. According to THR, Steinfeld will play Ruffalo’s daughter. Judd Apatow will executive produce, and the production is eyeing a June start date.
Steinfeld is currently shooting a period-adaptation of Romeo and Juliet co-starring Damian Lewis and Paul Giamatti. She’s also attached to play Petra in the long-awaited adaptation of Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game, and she’s set to star to the sci-fi film Forgotten. Steinfeld blew me away in True Grit, and while it currently looks like we may not see her in 2012, she’s poised to have a monster 2013. It will be good to see her back.
We’ve got a few casting stories for you this evening. First up, Scarlett Johansson is set to star in John Carney’s (Once) music-oriented film Can a Song Save Your Life?. The Sunday Business Post Online (via The Playlist) reports that Judd Apatow will produce the pic, which centers on “a washed-up A&R man who forms a passionate bond with a young singer-songwriter (Johansson) from out of town.” Carney wrote the screenplay, and Mark Ruffalo and Jim Carrey have been rumored for the male lead. Filming begins in New York next year.
Additionally, Wizards of Waverly Place star Jake T. Austin has landed the role of Huck Finn in Tom Sawyer & Huckleberry Finn. Joel Courtney (Super 8) is in talks to take on the role of Tom Sawyer. Variety reports that Austin is in final negotiations to star in the adaptation of the Mark Twain classic, which Jo Kastner is directing with filming expected to get underway this August in Bulgaria. Hit the jump for the casting news of Mia Maestro joining Oliver Stone’s Savages.