Opening tomorrow is director Baltasar Kormákur’s crime thriller Contraband. Set in the world of international smuggling, the film stars Mark Wahlberg as a man trying to escape his days as a criminal. When his brother-in-law (Caleb Landry Jones) botches a deal, Wahlberg’s character must settle his brother-in-law’s debt in order to keep him safe from a drug boss (Giovanni Ribisi). The film also stars Kate Beckinsale, Ben Foster, J.K. Simmons, and Diego Luna.
Last week I was able to get on the phone with Wahlberg for an exclusive interview. During our wide ranging conversation, we talked about the New England Patriots playoff chances (we’re both from New England), how he got involved in Contraband, the action scenes, how he prepares for his roles, and what it was like to film on a real ship. In addition, with Wahlberg involved in so many other projects, he talked about The Fighter sequel, the Entourage movie, working with Adam McKay and Will Ferrell again in Three Mississippi, The Departed sequel, Michael Bay‘s Pain and Gain, Seth MacFarlane‘s Ted, the untitled Basketball movie with Justin Bieber, and a lot more. Hit the jump to read or listen to the interview.
Mark Wahlberg is a very busy guy. In addition to acting, Wahlberg has become increasingly involved in producing not only feature films, but a handful of original series as well. With Wahlberg’s new crime thriller Contraband opening next week, earlier today Steve got the chance to speak with the hard-working actor. While we’ll have the full interview up next week, we wanted to share what Wahlberg had to say regarding The Fighter sequel, the Entourage movie, and Michael Bay’s small-budget dark comedy Pain and Gain.
While it was previously reported that Wahlberg had passed on Pain and Gain, the actor revealed that he’s still very much considering the project and he’s currently waiting on a new draft of the script. Hit the jump to see what Wahlberg had to say concerning all the projects.
Earlier today, I had the chance to talk with The Muppets producers David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman. The full interview will be up the week of release (November 18), but I wanted to pass along what the producing team had to say about a few of their upcoming projects like the sequel to The Fighter, director Jonathan Levine’s (50/50) Warm Bodies, and Phineas and Ferb, which they are adapting as their first live-action/animated feature film. Lieberman confirmed last week’s news that Toy Story 3 writer Michael Arndt worked on the draft from series creators Swampy Marsh and Dan Povenmire, which bodes well for the project.
For those that want to see a Fighter sequel, which would explore the Micky Ward and Arturo Gatti fights, Hoberman and Lieberman tell me that “Wahlberg’s in training mode again,” but no one has been hired to write a script. Which means it’s still on the far off horizon. They also talked about the tricky tonal balance in Warm Bodies. Hit the jump for what they had to say on all three projects.
Over the past few weeks, Mark Wahlberg has been openly mulling a sequel to The Fighter. Wahlberg, who produced the flick in addition to starring as boxer Micky Ward, has said that the sequel would focus on the trilogy of fights between Ward and Arturo Gatti. He also says that everyone, including Oscar-winners Christian Bale and Melissa Leo, had such a great time that he couldn’t imagine them not wanting to return. However, a larger question mark was whether or not director David O. Russell would be willing to get behind the camera.
MTV caught up with O. Russell and learned that he would be willing to not only direct, but also write the script this time around. Says O. Russell:
“I think Micky’s story has a lot of heart whichever way you cut it. You’d go towards the Gatti fights and you could go into the history of the family more. I really like the sisters.”
I would pay to see a spin-off that focused only on the harpy sisters. Hit the jump for more on the potential sequel.
The Ward/Gatti trilogy of fights were the defining moments of boxer Micky Ward’s career. So it is often questioned why the fights were left out of The Fighter, the movie based on Ward’s life. To hear Mark Wahlberg tell it, they needed to save something for the sequel:
Now I’m trying to plant the idea in everyone’s head that we should do — not five or six Fighters like Rocky — but one more because the big thing that Micky Ward was famous for was his three epic battles with Arturo Gatti. So we’re talking about possibly taking one more run at it.
This is not the first time Wahlberg has expressed his desire for another Fighter, and he is hovering around his fighting weight in case the opportunity arises. But we’ve been told that the studio has not yet commissioned a script, and any development talk is still in the very early stages. Wahlberg admitted as much — read what he had to say after the jump.
David O. Russell’s The Fighter picked up two Academy Awards on Sunday (Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress), it’s grossed over $100 million worldwide, and star/producer Mark Wahlberg isn’t ready to give up the story of Mickey Ward just yet. Speaking to Extra [via The Playlist] on the red carpet Sunday, Wahlberg said:
“Now we’re gonna talk about doing No. 2,” Wahlberg explained. “We’re gonna do the Ward/Gatti trilogy and make it real,” referring to the real-life Mickey Ward’s three fights with his most fierce opponent, Arturo Gatti.
Hit the jump for my thoughts on continuing the story of The Fighter.