Production has commenced on George Clooney’s fifth feature directorial effort, the action-thriller The Monuments Men. The Columbia Pictures/20th Century Fox co-production tells the true story of an unlikely World War II platoon made up of museum directors, curators, and art historians tasked by FDR with going into Germany and rescuing artistic masterpieces from Nazi thieves before they are lost forever. Clooney directs, stars in, and produces the film alongside his Smokehouse Productions partner Grant Heslov, with whom he also co-wrote the script. Moreover, Clooney has assembled a truly remarkable cast that includes Matt Damon, Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett, Jean Dujardin, Bob Balaban, John Goodman, and Hugh Bonneville (Downton Abbey).
Unfortunately Daniel Craig is not listed as part of the cast in the official press release, so it appears that he may have dropped out of the film. Hit the jump for more, including the full press release.
The first trailer for the thriller Mobius has popped online. Directed by Eric Rochant, the thriller takes place in Monte Carlo in the world of high finance and stars last year’s Best Actor winner Jean Dujardin as an experienced spy who is tracking a powerful oligarch suspected of laundering money through his bank. It’s tough to parse any of that out in this trailer, but the clip does succeed in setting up an engaging and downright suspenseful tone reminiscent of Inception.
Hit the jump to watch the trailer. The film also stars Tim Roth, Cecile de France, and Brad Lelad (Buddy Garrity!). Mobius opens in France on February 27th, but no U.S. release date has currently been set.
George Clooney has lined up an incredible cast for his next film, Monuments Men. As we previously reported, the story centers on a group of art experts selected by the U.S. Government to chase down the stolen art of Europe during World War II. Aside from the terrific premise, Clooney, who co-wrote the film with partner Grant Heslov, will star alongside a cast that includes Daniel Craig, Jean Dujardin, Bill Murray, and Cate Blanchett. Dujardin, Murray, and Blanchett had previously been mentioned in connection with the film, and Craig is a strong addition along with other new cast members John Goodman, Bob Balaban, and Downton Abbey‘s Hugh Bonneville.
Hit the jump for more.
Paramount Pictures is looking to stay in the Martin Scorsese business, as the studio behind Shutter Island and Hugo has picked up the director’s latest film, The Wolf of Wall Street, for domestic distribution. Based on the memoir of Jordan Belfort, the pic stars Leonardo DiCaprio as a hard partying, drug addicted stockbroker who was indicted in 1998 for security fraud and money laundering and served a 22-month federal prison stretch. The fantastic supporting cast includes Jonah Hill, Kyle Chandler, Matthew McConaughey, Jean Dujardin, Margot Robbie, Joe Bernthal, and Rob Reiner.
Given the film’s pedigree, it’s no surprise that Deadline reports Paramount is planning a fourth-quarter 2013 release date. That puts Wolf of Wall Street in prime awards season placement, so the film should be a significant player in the 2013 Oscar race.
As George Clooney ramps up pre-production on his next directorial effort, the WWII drama The Monuments Men, he’s starting to focus on casting the film. Based on the book of the same name by Robert M. Edsel, the story centers on a group of art experts selected by the US Government to chase down the stolen art of Europe during World War II. Clooney is producing, writing, directing, and starring in the film, and The Artist star (and Best Actor winner) Jean Dujardin is now being eyed for a supporting role in the pic. Hit the jump for more.
Rather than go the route of most successful foreign actors and take on a villain role, Best Actor Oscar-winner Jean Dujardin (The Artist) will join another Oscar-winner’s film. According to Variety, Dujardin is in talks to join Leonardo DiCaprio in Martin Scorsese‘s adaptation of Jordan Belfort‘s memoir The Wolf of Wall Street. The story follows Belfort (DiCaprio), a hard partying, drug addicted stockbroker who was indicted in 1998 for security fraud and money laundering, and served a 22-month federal prison stretch. Dujardin will play “Jean-Jacques Handali, a suave Swiss banker involved in laundering illicit funds for Belfort’s firm.” Okay, so he’s kind of a villain. The film also stars Jonah Hill as Belfort’s friend and business partner, and Kyle Chandler as the FBI agent who took down Belfort.
Filming on The Wolf of Wall Street is set to begin in August. Hit the jump for a synopsis of the book. Dujardin will next be seen in the comedy The Players and he’s set to co-star with Tim Roth in the spy thriller Mobius.
Some casting news to share with you today. Check the bullets:
- Anthony Mackie (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) is in talks to join Ben Affleck and Justin Timberlake in the gambling drama, Runner Runner.
- Alex Pettyfer (I Am Number Four) will topline Diamond Dogs, an English-language thriller by director Pascal Chaumeil (Heartbreaker).
- Tim Roth (The Incredible Hulk) will join Jean Dujardin (The Artist) and Cecile De France (Hereafter) in the spy-thriller, Mobius.
Hit the jump for more.
Having just won the Academy Award for Best Actor, The Artist star Jean Dujardin may be looking to head back to his roots. THR reports that Dujardin may be reuniting with the sketch comedy troupe that launched his career, Nous C Nous, for the film Le Petit Joueur. Translated to The Little Player in English, the comedy “focuses on an out-of-work guy separated from his wife who decides to compete in a poker tournament organized by a billionaire.” Given that the actor is currently busy prepping for the romantic thriller Mobius, which shoots this summer, he’s only expected to have a small role in Le Petit Joueur.
Though the Best Actor Oscar is usually reserved for super serious dramatic actors, Dujardin is actually best known as a comedian in his native France. Other members from Nous C Nous include Bruno Salomone, Eric Massot and Eric Collado, who are all set to appear in Le Petit Joueur, as well as Dujardin’s real-life wife Alexandra Lamy. The actor has yet to sign on to a big Hollywood project post-The Artist, but one imagine’s he’s currently inundated with a bevy of villain offers. Hit the jump to check out a video of a Nous C Nous sketch involving Dujardin and Star Wars.
The Oscars are finally over. The front-runner, The Artist, won the awards race by picking up Best Picture, Best Director (Michael Hazanavicius), Best Actor (Jean Dujardin), Best Costume Design, and Best Score. There were also some big upsets as “locks” like The Tree of Life for Best Cinematography and Rise of the Planet of the Apes for Best Visual Effects were no match for Hugo, which ended up taking those categories and three more (Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, and Art Direction). As for nice surprises…not really (unless you loved Hugo).
It was a forgettable year for the Oscars, and Billy Crystal, turning in his safe, predictable, and family-friendly routine was the perfect fit for a year that screamed “Don’t rock the boat!” Last year’s Oscars took a chance on pairing Anne Hathaway and James Franco, and the show was a mess. This year, they played it safe and the ceremony was still dull. Quite simply, there was no films to root for and the “upsets” were for the establishment. It was also funny to have the show and actors celebrate the theater when audiences are moving to OnDemand services, and studios are trying to make the theatrical release window even shorter. Hit the jump for a full list of the winners, click here for mine and Adam Chitwood’s Oscar predictions (he did way better than me), and click here for my live-blog of the ceremony.
Jean Dujardin must have been just as surprised as everyone else when he didn’t hear his name being called out as they announced the Best Actor award at tonight’s César ceremony in Paris. The Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinéma opted instead for Omar Sy, who stars in Untouchables, the biggest box-office smash of 2011 in France. A choice that many question.
“Jean Dujardin will win an Oscar for best actor but not a César. How embarrassing…” tweeted (in French) @Les_Cesar_fake, a sentiment that was shared by many others.
Shortly after winning Best Actor, Omar Sy’s Wikipedia page was updated and said that he had won the best actor award “even though he didn’t deserve it.” The comment was removed five minutes later… Another running joke is “Omar m’a tuer” (Omar killed me), in reference to the film of the same name. Maybe the Académie did not want to overcompensate Dujardin… or maybe this was their way of telling the Oscars, “We can do out own thing just to annoy you and everyone else.”
The Artist nevertheless won six of the ten awards it was nominated for, including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actress. Hit the jump for a recap of the evening and a full list of winners.
I’m really hoping for some surprises on Oscar night if only to make things interesting, but it’s looking less likely every day. Last night The Artist nearly swept the British Academy Film Awards (essentially the British Oscars), taking home the prizes for Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Original Screenplay, Best Music, Best Cinematography, and Best Costume Design. Meryl Streep was named Best Actress for The Iron Lady, while Octavia Spencer and Christopher Plummer won Best Supporting Actress and Actor. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy wasn’t sent home empty-handed, as the spy thriller won Best British Film and Best Adapted Screenplay. I was happy to see Senna get some well-deserved recognition, as the Formula 1 doc chronicling the life of driver Ayrton Senna was named Best Documentary.
While George Clooney seemed the favorite in the Best Actor Oscar race for his magnificent turn in The Descendants, The Artist’s Jean Dujardin could easily prove the spoiler. With the SAG Award in hand and now the BAFTA, the French comedian may very well step up to the podium come Oscar night. Hit the jump to see the full list of BAFTA winners. The Academy Awards will be handed out on February 26th.
A staple of foreign actors making it big in America is signing on for the obligatory villain role. Christoph Waltz followed up Inglourious Basterds with The Green Hornet, Javier Bardem did No Country for Old Men shortly after The Sea Inside, and now The Artist’s Jean Dujardin is poised to follow suit. He’s a Best Actor nominee (and possible winner) for the likely Best Picture champion, and the charismatic Frenchman has teamed up with Funny or Die to poke fun at the whole “foreign star as the next big villain” thing. It’s an amusing video, and we see Dujardin tackle everything from Bond villain to the baddie in Jack and Jill 2. One thing’s for certain: Dujarin could charm the pants off of just about anyone.
Hit the jump to check out the video.
Sometimes controversy is the best publicity. And almost three weeks before its theatrical release in France, Jean Dujardin’s new movie is already garnering a lot of press. Posters for the comedy Les Infidèles (The Players) have been deemed too provocative by the Autorité de Régulation Professionnelle de la Publicité (an organization in charge of regulating publicity) who has advised Mars Distribution to remove them “as a preventative measure” after it received several complaints from unhappy citizens and outraged feminists. Four to be precise, but enough to have the offending images taken down.
The two posters feature Jean Dujardin and co-star Gilles Lellouche in explicit positions committing adultery while lying to their wives about their whereabouts. Lellouche is telling his significant other, “Honey, I’m going to get cut off, I’m going inside a tunnel,’ as a woman is… Oh, just hit the jump to check them out and find out more.
The 2012 Screen Actors Guild Award winners were announced tonight, and The Help took home the top film prize, “Outstanding Performance By A Cast In A Motion Picture”. The drama also took home awards for Best Actress (Viola Davis) and Best Supporting Actress (Octavia Spencer). If you think that’s no big deal in terms of affecting the Oscar race, I have one word for you: Crash. Granted, The Help didn’t even pick up an Oscar nomination for Best Director, but actors make up the largest block of Academy voters (25 percent). And as we’ve seen, actors really like movies that make us think we’ve defeated racism, which we totally have. That’s why all African-American actors pull in huge salaries. Actors like Will Smith and…Will Smith. I wouldn’t put The Help ahead of The Artist just yet, but Davis and Spencer should now be considered serious contenders in their respective catagories (Spencer is almost at a lock at this point).
The nominations for the 84th Annual Academy Awards have finally been unveiled. Many of the categories have fallen in line just as most have predicted (I fared alright with my predictions, but not great), with Hugo scoring 11 nods, followed closely by The Artist with 10. The biggest surprises are War Horse and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close getting in for Best Picture, the exclusion of The Adventures of Tintin from Best Animated Feature, and The Tree of Life nabbing Best Picture and Best Director nods (hooray!). On the snub side of things, despite landing the most precursor critics awards of any other actor in the race thus far, Albert Brooks was denied a Best Supporting Actor nod for his stellar work in Drive (boo). Additionally, Tilda Swinton was overlooked for giving the best performance of the year in We Need to Talk About Kevin, and AMPAS has no love for Michael Fassbender‘s haunting work in Shame.
There’s still plenty to be happy about, as Gary Oldman has his first ever Oscar Nomination (yes, that’s right) and Melissa McCarthy is a Best Supporting Actress nominee. Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominees. The 84th Academy Awards will be presented by Billy Crystal on February 26th.