The Playlist

Jonathan Levine Talks Surviving Title Changes & Casting Switch-Ups In Making '50/50'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • September 29, 2011 8:37 AM
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Filmmaker Describes Why They Dropped The Original Title, 'I'm With Cancer' & How They Survived Losing Their Lead Actor 2 Weeks Before ShootingOur conversation with director Jonathan Levine first ran during the "50/50" world premiere at the recent Toronto International Film Festival, but we're worried it got lost in that crazy shuffle. With the film in theaters this weekend -- on 2,400 screens no less -- we thought we'd revisit the chat one more time.

Jonathan Levine Says He Hopes His Zombie Movie 'Warm Bodies' Will Be "Visually Arresting"

  • By Edward Davis
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  • September 14, 2011 9:15 AM
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With "50/50" pulling in pretty positive reactions from most critics (although you'll recall that we were a little cooler on it than most), it looks like director Jonathan Levine is finally heading toward the big time, after a false start when his debut "All The Boys Love Mandy Lane" was lost to legal distribution hell.

TIFF '11 Review: Admirable, Low-Key ’50/50’ Splits Difference Between Genuinely Funny And Sad

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 11, 2011 10:46 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Let's get this out of the way early; the cancer dramedy, "50/50," formerly known as "I'm With Cancer," is an admirable effort by all the parties involved. There's maturity and restraint shown throughout in this story, about a healthy young twentysomething man staring his mortality in the face when he is suddenly diagnosed with a rare spinal cancer, and it's a well-intentioned humanistic drama that tries to demonstrate that life is complicated and never quite cut and dry. The measured film takes pains to illustrate there is laughter to be derived in difficult and near-tragic situations and melancholy can also be found in some of the most humorous moments. It's also a friendship movie that is wise enough to not feel like a bromance film. In fact, it feels like it comes from the playbook of master comedians like James L. Brooks, Judd Apatow and Albert Brooks who deftly understand that a little sour in sweetness and vice-versa can go a long, long way.

Director Jonathan Levine Talks Title Changes, Pearl Jam & Making Cancer Dramedy '50/50'

  • By The Playlist
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  • September 10, 2011 11:50 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Filmmaker Describes Why They Dropped The Original Title, 'I'm With Cancer' & How They Survived Losing Their Lead Actor 2 Weeks Before ShootingThe words 'Seth Rogen comedy' and 'Oscar-buzz' are not usually found in the same sentence, but that's the situation that "50/50" has found itself in. Based on an autobiographical script by Rogen's pal Will Reiser, it stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Adam, a man in his twenties who is unexpectedly diagnosed with cancer, with Rogen (who is also producing) as his best friend, and Anna Kendrick as his psychiatrist/love interest.

Dave Franco, Analeigh Tipton, Cory Hardrict Set To Be 'Warm Bodies'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • September 10, 2011 7:30 AM
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  • 2 Comments
While we're fans of Johnathan Levine, director of the recent "50/50," we're in wait-and-see mode regarding "Warm Bodies," the zombie romance the helmer is currently filming. He's got Nicolas Hoult and Teresa Palmer as the very pretty lead duo, with Hoult as a love-struck zombie in pursuit of a human female companion. Rob Corddry and John Malkovich have also been cast, but it seems the new, youthful additions of Dave Franco, Analeigh Tipton and Cory Hardrict to the cast clarify the "Twilight" angle of this premise, based on a novel described as " 'Twilight' meets 'Shaun of the Dead.' "

John Malkovich Set To Join Jonathan Levine's Zombies Picture 'Warm Bodies'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 8, 2011 11:57 AM
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Director Jonathan Levine’s cancer comedy “50/50” must have honchos quite happy over at Summit; we broke the news way back that the studio would be behind his existential zombie movie, “Warm Bodies,” and the casting on this one continues to be on a par with that of his recent effort for them.

New Poster For Jonathan Levine's '50/50' Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Seth Rogen

  • By Simon Dang
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  • July 13, 2011 2:58 AM
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  • 1 Comment
The term "dramedy" gets thrown around fairly loosely these days but one film we're expecting to really push the boundaries of the genre union is the upcoming story of a man's fight against cancer, masterminded by dynamic comedy duo of Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg.

'50/50' Crew Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, & Jonathan Levine To Team-Up For Road-Trip Comedy 'Jamaica'

  • By Edward Davis
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  • July 6, 2011 9:59 AM
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Cancer Comedy Scribe Will Reiser Also Penning ScriptThe sign of a good creative collaboration: a re-team before your first film even hits the the screens. That's the m.o. for the creative principas behind, "50/50," the comedy drama that was once known as "I'm With Cancer." Co-starring Seth Rogen and written by his friend and surviving cancer patient Will Reiser, the picture is directed by "The Wackness" helmer Jonathan Levine and is co-produced by Rogen's partner in crime, "Superbad" co-author, Evan Goldberg.

Jonathan Levine To Direct Young Adult Sci-Fi 'Legend' From 'Twilight' Producers

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 12, 2011 12:16 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Studio executives must have been over the moon when the first "Twilight" went massive at the box office. Not only where there was a new teen franchise, but, with a vampire as a protagonist, it was a theoretically endless one, vampires being, as everyone knows, immortal. But unfortunately for them, Stephanie Myers was inconsiderate enough to only write four books in the series (even more inconsiderately, the last one, once again, involves A WEREWOLF FALLING IN LOVE WITH A BABY), and so after next year's "Breaking Dawn Pt. 2," the franchise will come to an end, and the hunt has been on for some time for a replacement behemoth fantastical romance-infused young adult series.

Teresa Palmer In Talks To Join Nicholas Hoult In Jonathan Levine's Zombie Romance 'Warm Bodies'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 29, 2011 1:01 AM
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  • 0 Comments
It's taken a little while, but it seems like Australian actress Teresa Palmer is starting to hit a groove. The 25-year-old actress broke out in 2005 with "Wolf Creek," and quickly found herself coming to Hollywood's attention, turning up in Adam Sandler's "Bedtime Stories" and "The Grudge 2." But then came a couple of setbacks: George Miller cast her as the villain, Talia al-Ghul, in his "Justice League" movie, but the film collapsed, and while Palmer originally had the female lead in Doug Liman's "Jumper" she was recast when the decision was made to age-up the characters.

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