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Watch: Robert Pattinson Sleeps His Way Around Paris In The Trailer For 'Bel Ami'

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by Oliver Lyttelton
December 22, 2011 8:59 AM
8 Comments
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The next twelve months will be something of a pivot point for Robert Pattinson, as by this time next year, the "Twilight" series, which made his name, will be over, and the risk of him becoming a vampiric version of Mark Hamill -- never able to escape the shadow of his mega franchise -- will start to come up; while he's had a few modest successes, none have been massive, or particularly critically acclaimed. But the actor is clearly taking advice from the right people, with two indie films on the way with some pretty high pedigree, the second of which, David Cronenberg's "Cosmopolis" is one of our most anticipated films of 2012. 

But first up is "Bel Ami," a period drama that adapts Guy de Maupassant's novel of power, class and sexuality, in which the actor leads a cast including Kristin Scott-Thomas, Uma Thurman, and Christina Ricci. The film was shot eighteen months or so ago, but word has been pretty quiet on the film -- until now, that is, with U.K. distributors StudioCanal releasing a trailer over at MSN.

And, while we're not 100% convinced yet, and it'll clearly depend on your tolerance for costume drama, things aren't looking too bad. Pattinson plays Georges Duroy, a penniless soldier who uses a string of mistresses to make his way through upper crust society in late 19th century Paris. It all looks appropriately handsome, relatively faithful to the source material (albeit perhaps playing up the melodrama a little, which may just be the advertising), and the performances look pretty decent, particularly from Pattinson, who seems to have found a showcase that shows him off as more than a sparkly pale guy.

Like we say, we need a little more to feel totally confident on this, but with Declan Donnelan and Nick Ormerod, the men behind legendary British theater company Cheek By Jowl, making their film debuts on the project, there's reason to think it'll be more worthwhile than, say, "Cheri." The film doesn't yet have a release date in the U.S, but StudioCanal will put it in theaters on March 2nd in the U.K. Is it crazy to wonder if the film might be an addition to the Berlin Film Festival line-up in February before then? It'd certainly make sense. 

<a href='http://video.uk.msn.com/?mkt=en-gb&vid=fae1b3ae-bc50-4947-a29a-011836e782ad&from=&src=v5:embed::' _cke_saved_href='http://video.uk.msn.com/?mkt=en-gb&vid=fae1b3ae-bc50-4947-a29a-011836e782ad&from=&src=v5:embed::' target='_new' title='Bel Ami trailer (MSN Exclusive)' >Video: Bel Ami trailer (MSN Exclusive)</a>

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8 Comments

  • padre | January 7, 2012 1:09 AMReply

    Jen Yamato has the early screening report on Bel Ami. It may be one of the finest articles ever written. I rarely visit Movieline, but damn, if they are always this frisky I may have to start.

  • Kay | December 23, 2011 1:50 AMReply

    had to repost this, comment from Alt Film Guide:
    Page Mackinley
    December 22, 2011 | Permalink
    Present company excepted, it's interesting watching some critics bend themselves around the reality that they don't define or get to tell the market what they should enjoy or support. Stephanie Meyers books hooked a nation — but Pattinson and Stewart did the rest.
    It really has been extraordinary watching Pattinson in particular navigate his way through a notoriously difficult industry and the complications that must have attended. One can only imagine the countless times, Pattinson may have wished he could clarify, change or do-over certain aspects of his experience, but through it all he has remained authentic. And it is that quality that is the real touchstone of why people have reacted to him as they have.
    Media, being the soundbite merchant that it is loves to rhapsody about teen "rabid fans” or “menopausal moms” as being the (undiscerning) extent of audience-goers interested in Pattinson. Certainly these are present — and their money's as good as anyone's — but they are not the whole picture.
    I am a mid-30's screenplay writer from the UK who loves movies and complex characters, but I have seen little in recent years in terms of actually interesting, fresh ‘screen presence’ that has impressed me as much as Pattinson has. Do his looks have something to do with that? Of course. But wasn’t it the same with Newman, Taylor (Elizabeth), Redford and Bogarde — amongst others?
    Reverse prejudice based on Pattinson’s physical appeal are both limited and churlishly motivated, especially considering Pattinson did not enter the fray thinking a great deal of himself, and further, whose previous roles did not play up that component. Looks may get you a knock on the door, but only talent and depth holds interest. Megan Fox, case in point.
    Movie-making isn’t just big business, it’s epic monster-making business. Funded by financiers who make the Koch brothers look like Greenpeace activists, Pattinson (and Stewart’s) teams made canny business decisions to position their ‘talents’ in a film which — if it worked — would advance their charges considerably in the player stakes.
    That no-one could have anticipated the ensuing success would become as exponential as it has, is now the topic of countless talking-heads and avid note-taking by other agents. It’s probably a tad sweeping to say it comes down to one or even two factors, but really it’s self-evident.
    As we close out 2011, Patterson and Stewart — deservedly — emerge as the names to watch and invest in. Undeniably, the presence and depth both brought to their roles elevated an over-mined genre. Add an outstanding supporting cast, innovative soundtracks and scores, plus what can only be described as hardcore promotion on multiple levels, a great solid base to start with (due to Meyer’s previous book success) to the mix — and one arrives at the TS phenomenon.
    Unassailable fact: A relatively inexperienced young man with no discernible media training, or seemingly any desire to be the next typical ‘star-from-a pod,’ stormed America with a charm inoffensive not seen in a very long time.
    It was Pattinson’s astonishing funniness, openness, undeniable sweetness and originality on the horrifically gruelling press junkets he undertook — not to mention his iconic turn in Twilight et al –that enabled him to capitalize on the expert way his team have handled his rise.
    One hopes Pattinson never loses the qualities that first made people sit up and take notice. Paradoxically, it is the very doubts, fears and ‘humanity’ that all creatives feel, that is the fuel and portal through which they can connect with a role, audience — and indeed themselves. If, as Brosnan advises, Pattinson “keeps his wits about him,” he will follow his own compass, choosing and writing roles with dimension and nuance.
    One hears so many women in the industry talk about how limited roles are for female actors, but the same could equally be said for their male counterparts and the fare they are offered. The very different male actor ‘template’ Pattinson embodies has the potential to pack more than 45's and glib one-liners — simply by bringing the totality of who he is to the moment.
    If critics could put the tall poppy scythes down long enough to realize the TS saga does not define Pattinson or Stewart — they would see what the insightful can: The faces at the top of the tree have reshuffled and the determined consumer power of a denigrated demographic has spoken.
    Loudly.

  • Kate | December 22, 2011 4:19 PMReply

    cant wait

  • Ola | December 22, 2011 1:58 PMReply

    He's going to do great job in this film, 'cause he really is fabulous in this trailer,just perfect Duroy.

  • grace | December 22, 2011 12:15 PMReply

    looks incredible...

  • Guest | December 22, 2011 12:13 PMReply

    It looks great and he ( Rob) will convince all of you (OMG, he is EDWARD) that he has the Talent of an outstanding Actor....by the way, if anybody would have just seen, that he played that Vampire exactly like he was portrayed in the Book he wouldn't have to fight the TRash writers like Littleton made it out to be. Robert Pattinson has the Presence of a deNiro ,Brando, Newman and Downey...with better roles like Cosmopolis he will be the next SUPERSTAR

  • Kate | December 22, 2011 4:18 PM

    ITA!

  • emma | December 22, 2011 11:08 AMReply

    Looks good.

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