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Ben Affleck Says 'To The Wonder' Makes 'Tree Of Life' Look Like 'Transformers,' But Has He Been Cut Out Of The Movie Too?

by Kevin Jagernauth
August 31, 2012 2:07 PM
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To The Wonder Ben Affleck Rachel McAdams

The Telluride Film Festival is barely a few hours old, with things to kick off with the sneak screening of "Argo" later today, but already there is some curious buzz emanating the crisp, clear mountain air. And it's about a movie that's not playing the fest, though who knows if it will be one of the TBA slots on the schedule. It concerns Terrence Malick's "To The Wonder," which as of late has been earning press mostly due to folks like Rachel Weisz, Barry Pepper, Amanda Peet and Michael Sheen getting their scenes snipped out. But one of the biggest names attached also may have had his role severely reduced.

The usually plugged in and on the prowl Jeff Wells tweeted today: Affleck didn't say this, but I'm told he's barely in "To The Wonder" a la Adrien Brody in "Thin Red Line" and Sean Penn in "Tree of Life" Huh? From what we know of the logline of the film, it centers on a man who goes to Europe, falls in love with a woman (Olga Kurylenko), brings her back to America where they marry, only for him to rekindle a romance with a childhood sweetheart (Rachel McAdams). You would think you might need Affleck in the movie to make this work.

But, as always, one of the big rumors around the movie is how "experimental" it is in nature (with rumblings that it has very minimal dialogue), so could Malick be telling this story but instead doing so from the perspective of the women and not Affleck? We'll find out very soon, and we'll add this little nugget: in Toronto it's Kurylenko and McAdams who are doing press for the film, not Affleck. Hmm....

At any rate, Affleck offered up a helluva tease about the movie while speaking at the Telluride Picnic. According to Jeff Wells he saidTerrence Malick's "To The Wonder," in which he stars, "makes 'Tree of Life' look like 'Transformers.'"

Anyway, all interesting stuff to contemplate and debate, but we'll have our answer on Sunday when "To The Wonder" screens for press in Venice.

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More: To the Wonder , Ben Affleck

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  • teejay | September 2, 2012 4:55 PMReply

    Malick = overrated.

  • abdallah | September 1, 2012 3:26 PMReply

    I think it might be a la Tarkovsky's"Mirror" mode , where the man who is at the center of the film is barely visible as an adult in any scene , Maybe :)

  • Jason | August 31, 2012 4:39 PMReply

    Please post any reviews or news about the reactions on Monday.

  • yer | August 31, 2012 4:06 PMReply

    It's always funny to see mainstream yuppies get their jimmies rustled when an auteur is at work.

  • JACOB | August 31, 2012 4:40 PM


  • Mohammed | August 31, 2012 4:01 PMReply

    I hated Tree Of Life, contrary to many. It still boggles me how so many talented people waste their time with a director that just removes them from the film. Just listen to Christopher Plummer speak about him with the Daily Beast last year. He also didn't have the decency to tell Adrian Brody that he wasn't in the film before someone on the red carpet to the screening told him. I hope soon no one will work with him and he can go on and film dinosaurs and trees.

  • teejay | September 2, 2012 5:00 PM

    Malick can do what he wants ... with other people's money. The ones who should be pissed are the investors who won get any ROV.

  • Christopher Bell | August 31, 2012 7:44 PM

    To be incredibly hyperbolic... it's for a greater cause. The actors still get their payday. It's not like Plummer didn't have decades worth of work he was proud of, either. To a lesser extent, Brody has that as well. I get the annoyance, but it's really not the biggest deal. Nobody makes them like Malick, and I can see why an actor would want to be part of that, even if it does mean that they end up getting cut out.

  • Mike | August 31, 2012 4:44 PM

    As you said, that opinion is contrary to many so don't hold our breath for your hope to come true. Malick is an artist, he can do what he wants, he's in charge. If you dont like his movies, don't watch, if you were an actor that's miffed by this I could understand.

  • DG | August 31, 2012 3:59 PMReply

    Funny how the Malick articles always get people so riled up. Seriously though Everyone stop whining about the stories/reporting/grammar. If you don't like it just go to another site or skip that story

  • Pierre | August 31, 2012 3:33 PMReply

    Pretty soon Malick is just going to work exclusively with CG dinosaurs, á la Avatar.

  • cunterman | August 31, 2012 3:03 PMReply

    To paraphrase Dr. Ian Malcolm: "Ah, now eventually you do plan to have movie stars in your, in your movie, right? Hello?"

  • Benji | August 31, 2012 3:02 PMReply

    Fans are ravenous for any information about this project that can be scrounged up. A Jeff Wells tweet from a film festival is a perfectly reasonable source to write an article around (and quite an exciting one as well). The Playlist is not CNN. Waiting for a reputable source for news abouta Malick picture would be a fruitless endeavor.

  • cunterman | August 31, 2012 3:06 PM

    Well, we'll find out for sure on Sunday.

  • Lou | August 31, 2012 2:39 PMReply

    Rachel McAdams won't be at Venice according to some journalists... So maybe it means her part is not that big neither...

  • hahaha | August 31, 2012 2:27 PMReply

    you based this off a Jeff Wells tweet, you guys are really on the way down and out

  • Christian | August 31, 2012 2:20 PMReply

    Remember how Christian Bale was replaced by Ben Affleck for this film...

  • Eneko Ruiz | August 31, 2012 2:18 PMReply

    And Bardem will be speaking in Spanish in his narration, just one of the languages of the movie:

  • dudeabides | August 31, 2012 2:16 PMReply

    jesus christ u call this reporting?

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