Screenwriter Julian Fellowes Talks ROMEO & JULIET, Adapting Shakespeare, DOWNTON ABBEY Season Four (and Five), GILDED AGE, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 44 days ago

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Romeo & Juliet is the timeless story of star-crossed lovers from warring families.  The families of Montague and Capulet will use any excuse to publicly fight in the streets of Verona, so when Romeo (Douglas Booth) falls for Juliet (Hailee Steinfeld), it quickly receives the wrath of both of their families, when all they want to do is be together forever.  Written by Julian Fellowes and directed by Carlo Carlei, the film also stars Paul Giamatti, Damian Lewis, Natascha McElhone, Ed Westwick, Kodi Smit-McPhee and Lesley Manville.

At the film’s press day, screenwriter Julian Fellowes (who is also the creator/writer of the hit drama series Downton Abbey) spoke to Collider for this exclusive interview about why he was excited to tackle Romeo & Juliet for the big screen, how he worked exclusively from the play itself, and watching actors Douglas Booth and Hailee Steinfeld bring it to life.  He also talked about how viewers seem to hold him personally responsible, anytime an actor leaves Downton Abbey, how Paul Giamatti came to be doing the Christmas episode for this season, that he doesn’t know exactly how long the show will continue to run for, even though there will definitely be a fifth season, and how he’s writing a series for American television, called The Guilded Age, that he will do after Downton Abbey is finished.  Check out what he had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.

Douglas Booth Talks ROMEO & JULIET, Tackling Shakespeare Then the Bible in NOAH, and How Wild JUPITER ASCENDING Will Be

by     Posted 1 year, 47 days ago

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Romeo & Juliet is the timeless story of star-crossed lovers from warring families.  The families of Montague and the Capulet will use any excuse to publicly fight in the streets of Verona, so when Romeo (Douglas Booth) falls for Juliet (Hailee Steinfeld), it quickly receives the wrath of both of their families, when all they want to do is be together forever.  Written by Julian Fellowes (Downton Abbey) and directed by Carlo Carlei, the film also stars Paul Giamatti, Damian Lewis, Natascha McElhone, Ed Westwick, Kodi Smit-McPhee and Lesley Manville.

At the film’s press day, actor Douglas Booth spoke to Collider for this exclusive interview about being excited for the challenge of tackling Shakespeare, having to fight for the role of Romeo, screen testing with Hailee Steinfeld, getting to work with both a younger and more veteran cast, and taking his time to wrap his head around the language.  He also talked about the experience of working on Noah with director Darren Aronofsky, and just how wild The Wachowskis next film, Jupiter Ascending, will be.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

New Trailer for ROMEO & JULIET Starring Hailee Steinfeld, Douglas Booth, and Paul Giamatti

by     Posted 1 year, 124 days ago

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Relativity Media has released a new trailer for director Carlo Carlei’s Shakespeare adaptation Romeo & Juliet.  Adapted by Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes, this version doesn’t seem to be taking too many liberties with the source material, as the original setting, characters, and dialogue are all maintained and there are no drag queens to be found.  This trailer appears to be aimed squarely at young ‘uns who might be unfamiliar with the material, as the particulars of the story are laid out plainly and there’s even a trendy hashtag to go along with it (#forbiddenlove, of course). 

Hit the jump to watch the new trailer.  The film stars Hailee Steinfeld, Douglas Booth, Paul Giamatti, Ed Westwick, Damian Lewis, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Natascha McElhone, Christian Cooke, Lesley Manville, and Stellan SkarsgardRomeo & Juliet opens on October 11th.

THE SEVENTH SON Delayed Until 2014, GRUDGE MATCH Moves up to This Christmas, ROMEO AND JULIET Pushed Back to October

by     Posted 1 year, 153 days ago

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Here are the latest release date shifts for the following pictures:

  • The Seventh Son – This Warner Bros. fantasy-adventure follows mystical knight Father Gregory (Jeff Bridges) and his apprentice Tom Ward (Ben Barnes) on their quest to defeat the evil witch, Mother Malkin (Julianne Moore) and her followers.   The movie is now expected to open January 17, 2014.
  • Grudge Match – Peter Segal’s fight flick between aging boxers played by Robert De Niro and Sylvester Stallone will now open on December 25th.
  • Romeo and Juliet – Relativity Media has pushed director Carlo Carlei’s Shakespeare adaptation back to an October 11th release date.  Hailee SteinfeldDouglas Booth and Paul Giamatti star.

All release date info courtesy of Box Office Mojo.

Biopic JOBS Set for August 16th Release; Release Dates Announced for ROMEO AND JULIET, SELFLESS, and HOMEFRONT

by     Posted 1 year, 168 days ago

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We’ve got a few release date announcements to share.  Briefly:

  • Jobs – The biopic starring Ashton Kutcher—which was initially slated to open this past April—has been set for release on August 16th opposite Kick-Ass 2, the historical drama The Butler, and the thriller Paranoia.  Read Matt’s review of the film from Sundance here.
  • Romeo and Juliet – Relativity Media has slated director Carlo Carlei’s Shakespeare adaptation for a limited release on September 6th.  Hailee Steinfeld, Douglas Booth, and Paul Giamatti star.
  • Homefront – Written by Sylvester Stallone, the long-delayed actioner starring Jason Statham, James Franco, and Winona Ryder will open on October 4th opposite Sin City 2, the sci-fi pic Gravity, and the thriller Out of the Furnace.
  • Selfless – Director Tarsem’s film about a dying man whose consciousness is transferred into a younger body will open on September 26, 2014. Ryan Reynolds stars.

First Trailer for ROMEO & JULIET Starring Hailee Steinfeld, Douglas Booth, and Damian Lewis

by     Posted 1 year, 229 days ago

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The first trailer for director Carlo Carlei’s adaptation of Romeo & Juliet has landed online.  Written by Julian Fellowes (Downton Abbey, Gosford Park), the film stars Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit) as Juliet and Douglas Booth (The Pillars of the Earth) as Romeo, with a rather impressive supporting cast that includes Paul Giamatti, Stellan Skarsgard, and Homeland’s Damian Lewis.  Carlei maintains the original setting of Shakespeare’s play and looks to be taking a rather classical approach to the storytelling.  Following a rather awkward opening with “movie trailer guy” reciting Shakespeare, the clip sufficiently teases the romantic and intense aspects of Shakespeare’s source material.  However, with a story that’s been told countless times, it’s tough to be excited by a new adaptation unless its told in an original or interesting fashion.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer.  The film also stars Ed WestwickKodi Smit-McPhee (Let Me In) and Natascha McElhoneRomeo & Juliet is set for release in the U.K on July 26th, but a US distribution deal has yet to be made.

Kodi Smit-McPhee Talks PARANORMAN, THE CONGRESS, ROMEO AND JULIET, and A BIRDER’S GUIDE TO EVERYTHING

by     Posted 2 years, 101 days ago

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LAIKA’s awesome 3D stop-motion feature, ParaNorman opens this Friday.  Directed by Chris Butler and Sam Fell, the film centers on a young boy who can see the dead and must use this gift to lift a curse that threatens his small town.  ParaNorman features the voices of Kodi-Smit McPhee, Anna Kendrick, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, John Goodman, Casey Affleck, Leslie Mann, Jodelle Ferland and more.  For more on the film, here’s six clips, a very cool featurette called Time Lapse, and all our previous coverage.

At the recent Los Angeles press day I spoke to Kodi-Smit McPhee.  We talked about making ParaNorman, his reaction to the finished film, how the script change along the way, what surprised him about the recording process, and upcoming projects like The Congress, Romeo and Juliet and A Birder’s Guide to Everything.  Hit the jump to watch.

First Images from Carlo Carlei’s ROMEO AND JULIET Starring Hailee Steinfeld and Douglas Booth

by     Posted 2 years, 181 days ago

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The first images from Carlo Carlei‘s Romeo and Juliet have gone online.  The film retains the original setting of Shakespeare’s play, but the tone is aimed at wooing the Twilight crowd.   Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit) stars as Juliet, and Douglas Booth (The Pillars of the Earth) is her fair Romeo.  I’m not sure how Carlei plans to reconcile what’s arguably a “dated” setting with a modern attitude, but I like the look of the film, I’m eager to see Steinfeld’s follow up to True Grit, and the great supporting cast includes Paul Giamatti, Stellan Skarsgard, Damian Lewis, and Natascha McElhone.  Bring on the star-crossed lovers.

Hit the jump to check out the images.  The movie currently has no U.S. release date, but it’s set to open in the U.K. on February 14, 2013.

Damian Lewis Cast in ROMEO AND JULIET

by     Posted 2 years, 299 days ago

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Television’s Homeland star Damian Lewis has been cast in the adaptation of Romeo and Juliet directed by Carlo Carlei (The Flight of the Innocent). Production is currently underway in Italy, with Paul Giamatti recently joining as Friar Lawrence and with Hailee Steinfeld and Douglas Booth playing the star-crossed lovers. Lewis has been cast as Lord Capulet in the strict adaptation written by Oscar-winner Julian Fellowes of Gosford Park and Downton Abbey fame. The film, aimed at drawing in a younger audience, also stars Ed Westwick as Tybalt and Kodi Smit-McPhee as Benvolio. Hit the jump to see who else has recently joined the cast of Romeo and Juliet.

Paul Giamatti Joins ROMEO AND JULIET; Martin Freeman and Tim Curry Will Lend Voices to SAVING SANTA

by     Posted 2 years, 305 days ago

We’ve got a couple of casting stories for you this morning. First up, Paul Giamatti has joined the cast of Carlo Carlei’s period adaptation of Romeo and Juliet. Production begins in Italy this month, and Variety reports that Giamatti will be playing Friar Lawrence in the strict adaptation. Hailee Steinfeld is onboard as Juliet, while Douglas Booth will play her fair Romeo. The age-appropriate cast also includes Ed Westwick (Gossip Girl) as Tybalt and Kodi Smit-McPhee (Let Me In) as Benvolio. The adaptation was written by Gosford Park and Downton Abbey scribe Julian Fellowes, so we should be in for a good deal of English wordplay (huzzah!). Giamatti will next be seen in the star-studded musical Rock of Ages.

Additionally, Martin Freeman, Tim Curry, and Noel Clarke (Kidulthood) have been set to lend their voices to the animated pic Saving Santa. The film is the first animated effort from Gateway Films (Anuyahood) and Variety reports that the story centers on a clumsy elf who discovers the secret of Santa’s time travel device and sets out on a journey to save Santa’s kingdom after its location is discovered by an evil character. Finally, someone is doing a Santa Claus time travel story. Freeman is currently filming the two-part adaptation of The Hobbit.

Douglas Booth Cast as Romeo Opposite Hailee Steinfeld in ROMEO AND JULIET

by     Posted 3 years, 159 days ago

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It appears that director Carlo Carlei has finally found his Romeo. British actor Douglas Booth (LOL) has been cast in the lead opposite Hailee Steinfeld who will play Juliet in Carlei’s adaptation of Romeo and Juliet. Variety reports that 19-year-old Booth beat out 300 other actors who were vying for the part. Ed Westwick is set to play Tybalt, with 14-year-old Kodi Smit-McPhee (Let Me In) on board as Benvolio. Apparently babies were considered too chubby to take on the roles in this extremely young cast.

Italian director Carlei (Flight of the Innocent) will helm from a script by Julian Fellowes (Gosford Park), who is also producing the film. Shooting is set to begin this summer in Italy. In addition to the aforementioned actors, Holly Hunter is set to play Nurse. The role of Mercutio has yet to be cast.

Kodi Smit-McPhee in Talks to Play Benvolio in ROMEO AND JULIET Opposite Hailee Steinfeld; Corbin Bernsen Joins LAY THE FAVORITE

by     Posted 3 years, 173 days ago

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And the casting stories keep on coming. 14-year-old Kodi Smit-McPhee (Let Me In) is in early negotiations to join Carlo Carlei’s adaptation of Romeo and Juliet. Variety reports that he’s being eyed for the role of Benvolio, Romeo’s cousin. Hailee Steinfeld is attached to star as Juliet, with Ed Westwick poised to play Tybalt and Holly Hunter set to take on the role of The Nurse. Italian director Carlei (Flight of the Innocent) will helm from a script by Julian Fellowes (Gosford Park). The key roles of Romeo and Mercutio have yet to be cast, but production is set to begin this summer in Italy.

Additionally, Corbin Bernsen has joined the cast of the indie gambling comedy Lay the Favorite. Based on the memoir of Beth Raymer, the flick stars Rebecca Hall, Bruce Willis, Vince Vaughn and Catherine Zeta-Jones. The story centers on Raymer’s rise from a Las Vegas cocktail waitress to one of the world’s best gamblers. Variety reports that Bernsen will play Hall’s father in the flick. Stephen Frears (High Fidelity) is directing from a script by D.V. De Vincentis. I’m a big fan of Frears, and the cast he’s turning out is pretty impressive. Hit the jump to read a synopsis of the novel.

Ed Westwick to Play Tybalt in ROMEO AND JULIET

by     Posted 3 years, 188 days ago

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Because it’s been almost 15 years since Baz Lurhmann’s Romeo + Juliet, and Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes are all old now, it’s apparently time to make a new version of William Shakespeare’s romantic tragedy. Hailee Steinfeld is set to star as Juliet in the adaptation, set to be directed by Italian filmmaker Carlo Carlie (Flight of the Innocent). Now, Variety reports that Gossip Girl star Ed Westwick is in final negotiations to star as Tybalt in the indie. Julian Fellowes (Gosford Park) wrote the screenplay and Holly Hunter recently joined the cast as The Nurse. The role of Romeo has yet to be cast. Production is set to begin this summer in Italy.

Holly Hunter Joins STILL I RISE; In Talks for ROMEO AND JULIET

by     Posted 3 years, 192 days ago

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Holly Hunter has signed a deal to star in Still I Rise, a look at the public education crisis in America.  Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis star as “two frustrated mothers who team up to transform an inner-city public school.”  Isaac recently joined the cast as  a “sexy, ukulele-playing teacher” who romances and inspires Gyllenhaal’s character.  Hunter will play the head of the teacher’s union.  Director Daniel Barnz (Beastly) is now polishing a rewrite of the original Brin Hill screenplay.  Production on the Walden Media/Fox collaboration begins next week in Pittsburgh.

Likewise, Hunter is likewise in negotiations to join the cast of a new Romeo and Juliet movie.  True Grit star Hailee Steinfeld is attached to play Juliet — at 14 years of age, Steinfeld hews closer to the 13-year-old girl Shakespeare described.  Italian director Carlo Carlie (Flight of the Innocent) will direct from a screenplay by Julian Fellowes (The Tourist).  The $15 million production is expected to begin filming soon in Italy.  Deadline doesn’t specify, but my guess is Hunter is in talks to play either Lady Capulet (Juliet’s mother) or Lady Montague (Romeo’s mother).

Still I Rise will be Hunter’s first feature film since 2005, following a brief detour in to television with Saving Grace.

Shawn Levy to Produce Revisionist Romeo and Juliet Story from (500) DAYS OF SUMMER Scribes

by     Posted 4 years, 14 days ago

It’s been a few years since we’ve seen a “hip” take on a Shakespeare classic, so we were due.  Shawn Levy, director/producer of Date Night and the upcoming Real Steel, has made a deal with Fox 2000 to produce an update of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, adapted from the novel Rosaline by Rebecca Serle .  Deadline reports that “this is a contemporary version set in a high school, and the famed story is told from the vantage point of Rosaline, the jilted ex-girlfriend of Romeo.” Scott Neustadter and Michael Weber will be writing the screenplay for the film.

Neustadter and Weber also wrote the refreshingly original (500) Days of Summer, as well as the less than refreshingly original Pink Panther 2.  Levy recently wrapped filming the Steven Spielberg-produced action/sci-fi flick Real Steel, with Hugh Jackman playing the lead.  Hit the jump for a bit more on the film.

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