May 1, 2013 | Posted by Linda Ge
James Franco has set “Game of Thrones” badass Emilia Clarke to play the female lead in his next directorial venture, “The Garden of Last Days”, according to THR. Franco will also take a starring role in the adaptation of the Andre Dubus III novel of the same name.
Hanna Weg adapted the novel, which is set at the onset of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, but the screen version will be set in contemporary times. Taking place in and around a strip club in Florida, “Garden of Last Days” follows three central characters, a stripper named April (Clarke) forced to bring her young son to work after his babysitter has a panic attack, an angry and lonely man kicked out of the club (presumably Franco) and “a foreigner with an endless supply of cash on the brink of committing a terrifying act.” A July production start is scheduled.
With only a TV movie and a one-episode guest spot on a British TV series to her credit as of 2010, Clarke won the opportunity of a lifetime when she replaced fellow Brit actress Tamzin Merchant after the pilot for “Game of Thrones” had already been filmed. In her time off from the show, which is now in its third season, she completed work on indie British rock music comedy “Spike Island” and upcoming thriller “Dom Hemingway” opposite Jude Law.
April 28, 2013 | Posted by Linda Ge
I know what you’re thinking: What’s that elusive James Franco up to these days? Deadline reports the ever-busy multi-hyphenate has lined up his next directing gig, an adaptation of Andre Dubus III’s novel “The Garden of Last Days”, which he will of course also play a starring role on screen in.
Hanna Weg adapted the novel, which is set at the onset of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, but the screen version will be set in contemporary times. Set in and around a strip club, “Garden of Last Days” follows three central characters, a stripper named April forced to bring her young son to work after his babysitter has a panic attack, an angry and lonely man kicked out of the club and “a foreigner with an endless supply of cash on the brink of committing a terrifying act.” Yes, Dubus fictitiously imagines the mindset of one of the 9/11 hijackers, but no word on how that will be changed since the timeframe for the film will be shifted.
Franco will presumably play AJ, the patron who’s kicked out, and he’ll direct the film in July, after “Good People”, the thriller he’s starring in with Kate Hudson and Omar Sy. That films in May, after Franco heads to the Cannes Film Festival to premiere his adaptation of Faulkner’s “As I Lay Dying.” And if he can find the time, he might finish out the year on Werner Herzog’s “Queen of the Desert” with Robert Pattinson and Naomi Watts. Right now he’s filming “True Story” with Jonah Hill and will soon be seen in apocalyptic comedy “This is the End.”
April 25, 2013 | Posted by Linda Ge
James Franco to the rescue? When Werner Herzog’s Gertrude Bell biopic lost Jude Law, it ground the production – starring Naomi Watts and Robert Pattinson – to a halt, but now it appears Oz the Great and Powerful himself may ride in to save the day. Deadline reports filmmakers are now in talks with Franco to take over Law’s role in “Queen of the Desert”, but they caution scheduling is still being worked out and everything is contingent upon that right now.
Watts stars as writer Gertrude Bell in the flick that chronicles “Bell’s life as a writer, archaeologist, explorer, cartographer and political attache for the British Empire. One of the first women to graduate from Oxford at the turn of the 20th century, she traveled through the Middle East, defining the borders of Iraq, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.” Pattinson’s supporting role will be that of T.E. Lawrence, a British army officer whose brilliant writing of his experiences in WWI, particularly in his best known “Seven Pillars of Wonder”, earned him international acclaim as Lawrence of Arabia and became the subject of the iconic 1962 film starring Peter O’Toole. Lawrence and Bell were good friends and helped establish the Hashemite dynasties in Jordan and Iraq in the 1910s. Law’s role – now Franco’s – was never specified, but speculation pegged it as Charles Doughty-Wylie, with whom Bell had a two-year affair.
The free-spirited Franco was nominated for an Oscar for his role in Danny Boyle’s “127 Hours”, and most recently starred as the titular Wizard in Disney’s megahit “Oz the Great and Powerful.” He’s currently filming true life crime drama “True Story” with Jonah Hill and Felicity Jones and will soon be seen playing himself along with some of his celebrity friends in apocalyptic stoner comedy “This Is The End.” He does all this in between directing his own films, putting on art shows, taking college classes and writing a column for The Huffington Post. No wonder scheduling is an issue!
April 22, 2013 | Posted by Linda Ge
French “The Intouchables” breakout star Omar Sy continues racking up Hollywood roles, with Deadline reporting today he has lined up thriller “Good People” opposite James Franco and Kate Hudson.
Based on the 2009 novel of the same name by Marcus Saskey, the big screen adaptation of “Good People” will see Franco and Hudson playing a severely in-debt American couple living in London, who think all their problems are solved when their downstairs neighbor dies and leaves behind nearly half a million dollars. Of course, they take it and that’s when “bad things start happening to good people.” Filming begins at the end of May on location in London under the direction of Danish filmmaker Henrik Genz, who is making his English-language debut.
Sy, who has been steadily acting in his native France for a decade, broke out in “The Intouchables” and moved to Los Angeles last year but will continue to make French movies. He is attached to culinary comedy “Chef” opposite Bradley Cooper as well as “Chocolat”, a biopic of Rafael Padilla, “a former slave born in Cuba who became the first black artist in France during the Belle Epoque era” which will film in early 2014. He’ll next be seen in Michel Gondry’s “Mood Indigo” and also recently landed an unspecified role in “X-Men: Days of Future Past”, as well as one of the leads in thriller “Candy Store” opposite Jason Clarke.
April 2, 2013 | Posted by Linda Ge
All of Young Hollywood parties it up at James Franco’s house just as the end of the world hits in this summer’s apocalyptic comedy “This is the End”, and a new red band trailer shows off some of the side-splitting doom and gloom that will see the gruesome deaths of Michael Cera, Rihanna and Aziz Ansari. As the world collapses around them, survivors Franco, Craig Robinson, Seth Rogen (who also co-directed the film with Evan Goldberg), Jay Baruchel, Danny McBride and Jonah Hill struggle to stay alive, which is made all the more difficult when Emma Watson shows up and demands their scant resources with the help of an axe.
This looks funny enough, and is probably worth a ticket just to see so many of Rogen’s celebrity friends show up and play themselves before meeting impending doom but we are hoping Watson sticks around for more than the “Hermione just stole all our shit” cameo. “This is the End” will be released on June 14th and the new red band trailer can be viewed below.
February 5, 2013 | Posted by Linda Ge
British rising actress Felicity Jones has landed the female lead role in crime thriller “True Story”, according to Deadline. Jonah Hill and James Franco had been set for the two lead roles a year ago, andru now the project may finally be moving along.
Rupert Goold directs the adaptation of former New York Times writer Michael Finkel’s nonfiction book of the same name. Hill will play Finkel, whose memoir revolved around his entanglements with accused murderer Christian Longo (Franco). In 2002 Longo was arrested in Mexico for murdering his entire family, but he was living under an assumed name: Michael Finkel. On the very next day, the real Finkel was fired from his writing job after being accused of twisting facts in an earlier story on the African slave trade. After Longo’s arrest, the only reporter he will speak to is Finkel himself. The two begin a months-long face-off via correspondence, phone calls and face to face meetings as Longo insists he can prove his innocence and Finkel seeks to uncover the truth. Jones will play Finkel’s ” long suffering girlfriend, who tries to stand by her guy even after his screw ups cost them everything.” For what it’s worth, the book contains no such character, but this is a Hollywood makeover, after all.
After breaking out in 2011′s Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner “Like Crazy”, Jones laid low for a couple of years but now seems to be back with a vengeance. Her second collaboration with “Like Crazy” director Drake Doremus – “Breathe In” – just premiered at Sundance 2013, and she recently landed an unspecified role in Marc Webb’s “The Amazing Spider-Man 2″, prompting speculation it could be recurring supporting player Betty Brant or Marvel superhero Felicia Hardy, aka the Black Cat.
January 18, 2013 | Posted by Rebecca Lewis
It’s nothing new to see tween actors and actresses trying their hardest to break away from their pop cultural personas but “Spring Breakers” might be the biggest break several have tried all at the same time. Harmony Korine‘s day-glo blast of hedonism and violence stars Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Benson, along with a K-Fed inspired James Franco.
It’s rated R and following on from the US and European poster release, A24 and Annapurna Pictures have released a trailer which shows us why. It’s caused debate amongst fans of the actresses as well as critics, but it looks like a crazy, incredible explosion of a twisted American Dream.
Contrasting the insanity of the “Spring Breakers” trailer is Zac Efron‘s “At Any Price“, which was doing the festival rounds in 2012. Starring Dennis Quaid and Efron as a father and son with a tumultous relationship, the family’s farming business is threatened by an unexpected crisis and Efron’s desire to race cars. This new trailer showcases the urgency and drama of the film, set to be released April 26th 2013.
Away from the tween stars are two indie actors whose stars are slowly rising. “The Brass Teapot” starring Juno Temple and Michael Angarano looks to be a charming, fun and heartfelt indie pic following a young couple who discover a brass teapot that makes them money whenever they hurt themselves. Soon they must come to terms with how far they are willing to go and how money can change people. “The Brass Teapot” will premiere on VOD on February 28th before a wide release on April 5th.
And “21 And Over”, starring Miles Teller has a new TV spot as it gears up for a March 1st release. When straight-A college student Jeff Chang’s (Justin Chon) two best friends Casey (Teller) and Miller (Skylar Astin) surprise him with a visit for his 21st birthday, he decides to do the unexpected for a change – even with a critical medical school interview early the next morning.
Click below for the videos of all the above mentioned films.
January 15, 2013 | Posted by Linda Ge
in General News, Images
Film Festival season of 2013 is officially underway. Sundance is just around the corner, and now increasingly popular Austin fest SXSW has announced its first batch of films. Magician buddy comedy “The Incredible Burt Wonderstone”, starring Steve Carell, Jim Carrey and Olivia Wilde, will open the festival with its world premiere. Meanwhile, Wilde will be double-dipping at the fest, as she also stars in Joe Swanberg’s rom com “Drinking Buddies”, which co-stars Anna Kendrick, Jake Johnson and Ron Livingston and which will also have its world premiere at the festival.
Harmony Korine’s much talked-about “Spring Breakers”, which stars James Franco, Vanessa Hudgens, Selena Gomez and Ashley Benson and which premiered at Cannes last year, was also announced today as part of the initial lineup of SXSW. Another buzzy title making its world premiere is the remake of “Evil Dead”, which features the quintet of Jane Levy, Jessica Lucas, Shiloh Fernandez, Elizabeth Blackmore and Lou Taylor Pucci being tortured and slaughtered quite graphically.
The list of the first batch of films can be viewed below, along with the first image of Wilde and Johnson in “Drinking Buddies.”