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Production Watch: Olsen's Red Lights, Cheadle in War Machine, Petunia Shoots in NYC

Thompson on Hollywood By Sophia Savage | Thompson on Hollywood January 24, 2011 at 6:11AM

- Get her while she's hot. Sundance It-Girl (Martha Marcy May Marlene, Silent House) Elizabeth Olsen just joined Robert De Niro, Sigourney Weaver and Cillian Murphy in Red Lights, from director Rodrigo Cortes (Buried). The non-twin Olsen sister tells Risky Business she found the thriller after reading "script after script after script." She will play Weaver's student: “Robert plays a world renowned psychic and Sigourney is a psychology professor…Cillian Murphy is my love interest, though that’s not a huge part of the story.” Olsen will take a break from NYU -- "my education is always a priority" -- to shoot Red Lights. The Psych major "find[s] mental illnesses fascinating."
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Thompson on Hollywood


- Get her while she's hot. Sundance It-Girl (Martha Marcy May Marlene, Silent House) Elizabeth Olsen just joined Robert De Niro, Sigourney Weaver and Cillian Murphy in Red Lights, from director Rodrigo Cortes (Buried). The non-twin Olsen sister tells Risky Business she found the thriller after reading "script after script after script." She will play Weaver's student: “Robert plays a world renowned psychic and Sigourney is a psychology professor…Cillian Murphy is my love interest, though that’s not a huge part of the story.” Olsen will take a break from NYU -- "my education is always a priority" -- to shoot Red Lights. The Psych major "find[s] mental illnesses fascinating."

Thompson on Hollywood


- Don Cheadle's turn as War Machine (a.k.a. Lt. Col. James 'Rhodey' Rhodes) in Iron Man 2 was enough to launch a franchise of its own. These days, comic book character franchises aren't exactly rare, but this "would be a lot of fun," according to Cheadle. At Sundance, he told MTV News: "I think they've hired a writer, so we'll see how it goes." He previously denied the idea of a War Machine movie, but things have changed, "They're developing it now." Don't expect to see War Machine, however, in The Avengers (Spring 2012): Cheadle considers the character "a lone wolf."

- As of Monday, dark comedy Petunia is shooting in NYC. The ensemble of Thora Birch, Brittany Snow, Christine Lahti, Eddie Kaye Thomas and Michael Urie is directed by Ash Christian (Fat Girls). He also stars in the story of brothers living in the city who come to terms with life and love; there's sex addiction, a polyamorous would-be boyfriend, a cynical pregnant wife, and meddling parents. Christian co-wrote with Theresa Bennett. He also starred in his first film, Fat Girls, which debuted at Tribeca 2006 and took eleven best picture awards on the fest circuit before opening theatrically in November 2007.

- An update on two more Matrix films -- in 3-D -- is here, scratch that. Roger Ebert posts a letter from renowned editor Walter Murch on why 3-D will never work.

This article is related to: Festivals, Franchises, Genres, Independents, Daily Read, Production , Sundance, Iron Man, Drama, Comics


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.