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Scarlett Johansson To Play Janet Leigh In 'Alfred Hitchcock And The Making Of Psycho'; James D'Arcy Is Anthony Perkins

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by Kevin Jagernauth
March 1, 2012 10:43 PM
8 Comments
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Well this is a pretty inspired piece of casting. "Anvil! The Story Of Anvil" director Sacha Gervasi continues to build up his movie-about-a-movie pic "Alfred Hitchcock And The Making Of Psycho," and he's already got two great veterans on board with Anthony Hopkins and Helen Mirren playing Alfred Hitchock and his wife Alma Reville respectively. And now he's found his Janet Leigh.

Scarlett Johansson will be the actress who was famously murdered in the classic film, with Brit thesp James D'Arcy ("W.E.," "Cloud Atlas") also on aboard as Anthony Perkins. Penned by John McLaughlin and Tom Thayer, the film will chronicle the production of the seminal thriller, which Hitchcock pursued despite the odds stacked against him. "Psycho" was a project that Paramount hated. Hitchcock was originally going to direct "No Bail For The Judge" with Audrey Hepburn but had to scrap those plans when the actress became pregnant. So he moved on to "Psycho," and the studio was so negative on the project they gave him a paltry budget and resources, leading the director to back the movie through his own production shingle, build his own sets and utilize crew members from his TV show "Alfred Hitchock Presents."

For Leigh, the picture was easily the highlight of career (she won a Golden Globe and was nominated for an Oscar) and the shower scene was one that created the biggest myth around the movie. It was shot over a week (it's one of the most masterfully edited and shot sequences in cinema history), and over the years, Leigh denied rumors that Hitchcock got the famous scream by using cold water in the shower, or that her genuine fear was caused by the fact that she didn't know her character was going to get murdered. As Perkins, the picture made him a star and launched his career.

According to Variety, ScarJo's role is said to be awards bait in the vein of Michelle Williams' turn in "My Week With Marilyn." With filming set to begin this April, could we see this before the year is out? Guess we'll have to wait and see how Fox Searchlight decides to play it.

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8 Comments

  • Knative | March 2, 2012 11:03 AMReply

    This is bizarro. There's going to be a movie about the behind-the-scenes action of another, more famous, earlier movie?
    : /

  • bs | March 2, 2012 9:28 AMReply

    IB, just because ScarJo won the Tony- that doesn't mean anything. Remember, many people in the Broadway community and the Broadway critics were " up in arms " over her Tony win. And, the very talented Broadway star , Hunter Foster, started a Facebook campaign, ‘Give the Tonys Back to Broadway,’ because of her undeserved win. Scarlet won the Tony because she is a movie star, not because of talent. She is mediocre at best. This poor girl couldn't handle her three hour audition for " Les Miserables ." If a thespian comes from a strong theatre background, that thespian should be able to handle a long audition process.

  • IB | March 2, 2012 9:39 AM

    LOL, were you there to see her audition? Also she didn't just win the Tony 'because she is a movie star' - she had incredibly strong reviews (even from NYT's Ben Brantley) to back it up. The Broadway critics and community were 'up in arms' over her win taken collectively w/ Denzel Washington and Catherine Zeta-Jones also winning that year, giving the impression of starfucking.

  • eco | March 2, 2012 5:53 AMReply

    This is a tiny part in a script that is dominated by Hopkins and Mirren. If anyone's awards bait it'll be them. Also, James D'Arcy? What a waste of a good role. He stick to the Poirots and Marples he does so well!

  • BS | March 2, 2012 1:45 PM

    IB, Zeta -Jones & Washington received strong reviews. ScarJo received decent reviews, but her co-star Liev Schreiber won killer reviews .

  • Ackerman | March 1, 2012 11:34 PMReply

    "ScarJo's role is said to be awards bait in the vein of Michelle Williams' turn in "My Week With Marilyn".... not to burst your bubble, but that comparison would stick if ScarJo was nearly as talented as Williams. Had anyone else been cast as Marilyn in that film, it certainly wouldn't have turned out the same way. The role itself was not impressive as so many portrayals of Monroe have been shoved down our throats over the years but it was what Williams' brought to it. I hope ScarJo surprises us but I'm not too sure that she has what it takes.

  • bs | March 2, 2012 9:43 AM

    Ackerman, I understand your argument, and I do feel Michelle Williams ( always portraying the same depressing & wounded female characters ) has more talent than ScarJo, But, Michelle didn't pull-off Marilyn Monroe because her performance is fake. Williams couldn't emulate Marilyn's sex appeal, her speaking voice, nor her star power. It was a amateur hour type of performance. Now, Poppy Montgomery pulled-off a wonderful impression of Monroe for a good CBS mini-series.

  • IB | March 2, 2012 12:30 AM

    Janet Leigh is very far from the iconic presence that MM was, I'm sure ScarJo will be able to pull it off (she's a Tony award winner, after all)

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