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The Playlist

Marrakech Interview: Tomas Alfredson On "Slow Cooking," The 'Tinker Tailor' Sequel And Staying In Sweden

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 10, 2013 11:04 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Tomas Alfredson Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
A little like being told not to think of an elephant, when the small group of press who got to meet Tomas Alfredson at the Marrakech Film Festival was asked in advance not to ask about his next project, it was pretty much all any of us could think about. The “Let the Right One In” and “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” director has long been attached to an adaptation of “The Brothers Lionheart,” a children’s fantasy story by beloved Swedish author Astrid Lindgren (who also created Pippi Longstocking), and the version of the film that he was putting together was at one point rumored to have the highest ever budget for a Scandinavian film. Which is perhaps why Alfredson is a little gunshy about talking about it—in fact he told us that he doesn’t like to speak about projects before they are 100% financed and set in stone, so perhaps there’s still a question mark hovering there?

Marrakech Interview: Nicolas Winding Refn On Disliking Vikings, Realism & What He Learned From 'Fear X'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 9, 2013 2:12 PM
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  • 1 Comment
It’s telling, and maybe also a little paradoxical, that of the huge array of Nordic talent assembled onstage at the Scandinavian tribute last week at the Marrakech Film Festival, the honor itself was accepted (on the delegation’s behalf) by Nicolas Winding Refn. Telling, because it shows just how sky-high the director’s profile is, despite, or maybe because of, the mixed reaction to this year’s “Only God Forgives,” the follow-up to his Cannes-busting “Drive.” A little paradoxical, because it really feels that Refn can be less and less associated with the region of his birth these days: his last truly Danish film was 2005’s “Pusher 3” and his ongoing association with Ryan Gosling, along with his interest in non-European settings and cultures, makes him feel more international-with-maybe-an-independent-American-edge than anything else.

Marrakech Q&A: Martin Scorsese The Desire To Make Films, Suggests He Only Has A Few Left & Hopes ‘Silence’ Is Next

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 9, 2013 1:08 PM
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  • 17 Comments
The Wolf Of Wall Street, Scorsese
Over the weekend at the Marrakech Film Festival, as a final treat before the red carpet got rolled up for another year, 2013 Jury President Martin Scorsese did a brief Q&A at the local film school, to which he is apparently a returning guest. Scorsese has filmed twice in the area ("The Last Temptation of Christ" and "Kundun" both made extensive use of the arid desertland around the nearby Ouarzazarte studios) and so has filmmaking ties to the region that led to the students referring to him, endearingly, as their "godfather."

Noomi Rapace Talks ‘Animal Rescue’ & ‘Child 44’ With Tom Hardy, Tommy Wirkola's 'Monday?' & Much More

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 6, 2013 2:44 PM
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  • 6 Comments
These last few years have been a wild ride for Noomi Rapace, but sitting down to talk with her at the Marrakech Film Festival this week, we found her refreshingly down to earth, giving the impression of someone who is fully aware of the lucky hand she’s been dealt and is not afraid to work hard to stay so lucky. Of course it was the Swedish version of “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo” trilogy that originally saw Rapace break out internationally, and since then one of the things that has characterized her career has been her tendency to work again with people she has collaborated with before. So over the brief span of four years she did “Dead Man Down” for ‘Dragon Tattoo’ director Niels Arden Oplev, has two projects with Tom Hardy in the can, two with Mathias Schoenaerts and hopes to reteam with Ridley Scott for the mooted “Prometheus 2.”

Emile Hirsch Talks 'The Motel Life,' John Belushi & America's Obsession With Weight

  • By Diana Drumm
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  • December 6, 2013 1:20 PM
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  • 0 Comments
With his first child, a couple of indie films ("Prince Avalanche," "The Motel Life," "Twice Born"), a miniseries (A&E's "Bonnie and Clyde") and a meaty high-profile role on the horizon (John Belushi in the as-of-yet untitled biopic), 2013 is chalking up to be a pretty good year for Emile Hirsch. Over the course of his film career (his debut being in "The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys" in 2002), Hirsch has frequently varied his acting choices. Being led simply by the quality of the material, rather than trying to configure a trajectory or formulate a brand, Hirsch has run the gamut of being a young actor in (and outside of) Hollywood.

Marrakech Fest Interview: Tobias Lindholm Talks 'A Hijacking,' Influence Of Kathryn Bigelow On Next Film 'The War' & More

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • December 5, 2013 3:37 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Tobias Lindholm, A Hijacking
In a nice note of symmetry to our 2013, one of our first interviews of the year at the Goteborg Film Festival in Sweden, was with the Danish director of “A Hijacking,” Tobias Lindholm, and today we found ourselves in December in Marrakech getting to speak with him again. Lindholm is here as part of the Marrakech Film Festival’s tribute to Scandinavian cinema, which also boasts Tomas Alfredson, Noomi Rapace, Alicia Vikander, Nicolas Winding Refn and Mads Mikkelsen in its starry lineup. But it’s not just his nationality that brings him back; last year “A Hijacking” his sophomore directorial feature, was awarded the Jury Prize at this very festival. It’s always a pleasure to talk to anyone as engaging as Lindholm, but the year has proven busier than he had anticipated back at its start, and among other tidbits, he gave us an in depth look at his next directorial project, “The War” which is clearly on his mind in an evolving form right now, as even here at the festival, he is putting in four or five-hour days purely on script work.

Oscar Isaac Talks Going From Punk To Folk With 'Inside Llewyn Davis,' Upcoming Films 'A Most Violent Year & 'Ex Machina'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 5, 2013 12:45 PM
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  • 0 Comments
While he doesn't create his own obstacles to success that Llewyn Davis might, Oscar Isaac likely related to being perpetually on the cusp of stardom before landing the lead role in the latest from the Coen brothers. With films like "Robin Hood," "Drive," "Che" and "The Bourne Legacy" filling his CV, and experience working with filmmakers like Ridley Scott (twice), Steven Soderbergh, Nicolas Winding Refn and more, it's clear to anyone who caught those performances that it was just a matter of time until Isaac got the opportunity to show what he could do with a leading part. And luckily for him and us, the Coens did just that by putting him front and center of "Inside Llewyn Davis."

Casey Affleck On His PTSD Research For ‘Out Of The Furnace’, Christopher Nolan’s Working Methods On ‘Interstellar’ & More

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • December 4, 2013 2:01 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Out of the Furnace
It’s hard not to feel that instead of a mild, fleeting upset of Hollywood traditions with the Joaquin Phoenix “documentary” “I’m Still Here," its director Casey Affleck was aiming more for an industry meltdown on par with that of Phoenix’s in the film. However, the town was stubborn, and punished Affleck and Phoenix for their attempts with indifference -- the best move was to act as if nothing had occurred.

‘Out Of The Furnace’ Director Scott Cooper Talks Fluid Narratives, Burden Of Expectations & ‘Lie Down In Darkness’

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • December 3, 2013 4:18 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Out of The Furnace
When Scott Cooper, the actor-turned-writer/director who led Jeff Bridges to Oscar glory with 2009’s “Crazy Heart,” found himself in the position to make a sophomore film, he knew the downfalls, the expectations. “I had this pile of scripts that were daunting and beautifully written, some of which have come out this year and last, but I didn't really feel an emotional connection to them,” he said

Carey Mulligan Talks Ferocity Of Her ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ Character, Nicolas Winding Refn’s ‘I Walk With The Dead’ & More

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • December 3, 2013 12:05 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Inside Llewyn Davis
Once the quietly bold, somewhat naïve teenage characters of “An Education” and “Never Let Me Go,” actress Carey Mulligan has swiftly altered course in the past few years and tapped into an inner rage—first as Michael Fassbender’s unsettled sister in Steve McQueen’s “Shame,” and now as the perpetually furious folk singer Jean in the Coen Brothers’ newest film, “Inside Llewyn Davis” (our review here). Her character has good reason (mild spoilers): facing the struggles of starting a music career in 1960s New York alongside a volatile affair with Llewyn (played by Oscar Isaac), Mulligan’s character is a cathartic, energetic flood of anger over Llewyn’s aimless nature, and a unique touch to the brilliant film that falls in line among the directors’ best.

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