Thursday, November 8, 2007


Mike Newell, director of DONNIE BRASCO and HARRY POTTER & THE GOBLET OF FIRE (amongst many others), is in negotiations to direct the video-game adaptation PRINCE OF PERSIA for Disney and producer Jerry Bruckheimer. Michael Bay was previously attached to direct this big-budget, swords and sorcery fantasy epic, but he's off the project, diving head-first into TRANSFORMERS 2. Newell, while not the first name that comes to mind when thinking of a fantasty movie based on a video-game, has proven quite adept at juggling different genres and different sized projects. With a filmmaker of Newell's calibre on board for PERSIA, I'm interested in the project, though not holding my breath with anticipation. Fantasy movies have been a tough nut for me to crack (I am not a fan of LOTR) so it will be interesting to see what PERSIA is all about.

The WGA strike has now stopped production on the new season of 24. This makes me quite angry. I, like any other red-blooded American male, have been looking forward to new Jack Bauer shenanigans, and this news is not impressive. No word on when the show is being put back on the might not even happen at all depending on how long this inane strike lasts. Production on THE OFFICE has also stopped. F'ing lame.

The first footage of RIGHTEOUS KILL has hit the net. The cop/crime film stars Robert De Niro AND Al Pacino. Yep. Together again. This time as partners. The two heavyweights star as detectives on the hunt for a serial killer. I have mixed feelings about this project. While I love both actors, and am seriously looking forward to seeing them together on the big screen again (HEAT, aside from being a masterwork, is one of my top 10 favorites of all time), the production company and director behind RIGHTEOUS KILL don't inspire any confidence that this movie will be anything more than average to above-average. And the footage, which by clicking this link you can see, is hardly mind-blowing. It looks like sub-Michael Mann stuff. But hey, at least these two iconic American actors will be in a movie together. Something else going for the project is that the screenwriter behind the excellent film INSIDE MAN, Russel Gewirtz, wrote the RIGHTEOUS KILL script. We'll see....

Opening in wide release this weekend is FRED CLAUS, which is being savaged by the critics. The Robert Redford political drama LIONS FOR LAMBS, from newly-revived United Artists, and starring Redford, Tom Cruise, and Merryl Streep, is getting brushed off by a majority of critics as well. However, considering the liberal leanings of director/producer/star Redford, I can't take ANY of the critics seriously on this one; too many people will be tied up in their own politics to even give the movie a fair chance. Now I'm saying this as someone who hasn't seen the flick yet; ever since I saw the trailer, I've had immediate interest. NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN, the new and critically acclaimed crime-noir from Joel and Ethan Coen, opens in limited release this weekend in NY and LA; it goes wide on November 22. It's received four star reviews from nearly everyone who has posted reviews on it thus far. I will be seeing it Saturday and am looking forward to it--big time.

Last night, I caught Jonathan Kasdan's directorial debut IN THE LAND OF WOMEN, on dvd from Netflix. It was a nice but cheesy (and pretty cloying) romantic dramedy with a good lead peformance from Adam Brody (who stole every scene he was in from anyone in his vicinity during THANK YOU FOR SMOKING). If you've made your girlfriend watch AMERICAN GANGSTER, WE OWN THE NIGHT, and GONE BABY GONE, then she'll appreciate a nice, frothy piece of chick-flick candy like IN THE LAND OF WOMEN. And guys--you get to see Meg Ryan, who is still pretty hot.

More to come...


Josh said...

Re: Strike. Here is an interesting post from screenwriter Roger Simon. He predicts a lengthy strike.

Actionman said...

Thanks for the link.

Rich people striking is annoying