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Berlin Review: River Phoenix's Last Film 'Dark Blood' A Serviceable Movie, But A Fascinating Project

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • February 16, 2013 11:17 AM
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  • 1 Comment
River Phoenix died at in 1993 at just 23 years of age, and to a certain generation of then-teenage movie fans, of whom this writer was one, it was maybe the first of that kind of celebrity death, the kind you remember where you were when you heard about it. I was in a car with my mom, and I recall the radio report ended with a mention of Federico Fellini's death the same day (at 73 the Italian director, despite his greatness, was always going to be the Farrah Fawcett to Phoenix's Michael Jackson in the coincidental celebrity death stakes). Now 20 years on, the Berlin Film Festival is showing Phoenix's last film, "Dark Blood," by Dutch director George Sluizer (the original "The Vanishing" and his vastly inferior American remake) in unfinished form, and it makes for surprisingly thought-provoking viewing.

Berlin Film Festival Adds River Phoenix's 'Dark Blood,' David Gordon Green's 'Prince Avalanche,' 'Before Midnight' & More

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 18, 2013 12:04 PM
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  • 1 Comment
The Sundance Film Festival is only just getting underway today, but we're already looking further down the festival calendar. The first SXSW announcements came earlier in the week, and early this morning, the first of the big three European festivals of the year (preceding Cannes and Venice), the Berlin International Film Festival, has been solidifying the line-up for its 63rd edition.

Final River Phoenix Film 'Dark Blood' To Make U.S. Premiere At Miami International Film Festival

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 15, 2013 3:40 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Okay, so here's the background: A little over a year ago, director George Sluizer announced that he was going to finish River Phoenix's final film "Dark Blood," by re-cutting the footage and using voiceover to patch up narrative gaps. The Phoenix family washed their hands of the effort, releasing a statement that they would not be participating in the venture, but Sluzier pushed on. Overcoming some legal hurdles, and finding a way to finish the movie that only had 11 days left to shoot when Phoenix died, he crossed the finish line and at the Dutch Film Festival last fall, premiered the completed work. And now, it's coming to the United States.

Watch: Trailer for River Phoenix's Final, Unfinished Film 'Dark Blood,' Plus Interview With Director George Sluizer

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • May 25, 2012 10:37 AM
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  • 2 Comments
It's a well-documented slice of Hollywood history where River Phoenix went the night of his untimely death, but what's lesser known about is the halted production that the young actor was shooting at the time. Dutch director George Sluizer was ten days from wrapping on his film with Phoenix, “Dark Blood,” when he received news of his lead actor's death, and from then on the film was never released or spoken of again. However, since we last received news that Sluizer was forging on ahead, re-assembling the film as a tribute for completion and release, now there's an update and trailer to further hint at what remains of Phoenix's final role.

George Sluizer To Finish River Phoenix's Last Film 'Dark Blood'; Joaquin Phoenix To Do Voice-Over?

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 19, 2011 4:21 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Update: The Phoenix family have released a statement denying Sluzier's word that they were participating in getting "Dark Blood" finished saying, "Despite George Sluizer’s claim that he has been communicating with River Phoenix’s family in regard to releasing River’s last film, Joaquin Phoenix and his family have not been in communication with the director nor will they participate in any way.” So if Sluzier wants to finish the movie, he'll have to do with the help of River's family.

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