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Willow Smith & Jay-Z's Annie Remake, Pattinson & Knightley for Cosmopolis, Cusack "Bad-Ass" Poe

by Sophia Savage
January 21, 2011 12:00 AM
6 Comments
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Thompson on Hollywood


- The question is, will Willow Smith in a remake of (Little Orphan) Annie turn out to be a box office hit that plays like an extended music video proving that Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith turned out some cute money makers? Or will it be a gritty, creative and inspired re-telling of the outdated musical and 1982 John Huston film? Jay-Z signed Willow Smith (so thank him for "Whip My Hair") and is in talks to do the music on the remake. If Jay-Z's 1998 Annie-theme-song-inspired "It's The Hard Knock Life" is an indication of how the film would feel, we'll support it all the way. If the remake is heading for Whip My Hair Annie we'll pass. Videos of both Jay-Z and Annie's versions of "The Hard Knock Life" are below.

Thompson on Hollywood

- Cosmopolis, David Cronenberg's adaptation of Don DeLillo's novel (synopsis below is courtesy of Publisher's Weekly) is switching things up: both Marion Cotillard and Colin Farrell were on board, but now Rob Pattinson is in and Cotillard is out, possibly to be replaced by Keira Knightley. The production is aiming younger (and Twilight "RPattz" fans could pull some numbers), which seems odd for the director of A History of Violence, Eastern Promises and the upcoming A Dangerous Method. The latter is also starring Knightley, so Cronenberg's interest in her sounds legit. If Cosmopolis ends up as Pattinson and Knightley, the result could be a face off of who's prettier.

"…a study in big money and affectlessness. As one character remarks, 28-year-old Eric Packer 'wants to be one civilization ahead of this one.' But on an April day in the year 2000, Eric's fortune and life fall apart. The story tracks him as he traverses Manhattan in his stretch limo. His goal: a haircut at Anthony's, his father's old barber. But on this day his driver has to navigate a presidential visit, an attack by anarchists and a rapper's funeral. Meanwhile, the yen is mounting, destroying Eric's bet against it. The catastrophe liberates Eric's destructive instinct-he shoots another character and increases his bet. Mostly, the action consists of sequences in the back of the limo (where he stages meetings with his doctor, various corporate officers and a New Economy guru) interrupted by various pit stops. He lunches with his wife of 22 days, Elise Shifrin. He has sex with two women, his art consultant and a bodyguard. He is hit in the face with a pie by a protester. He knows he is being stalked, and the novel stages a final convergence between the ex-tycoon and his stalker. DeLillo practically invented the predominant vernacular of the late '90s (the irony, the close reading of consumer goods, the mock complexity of technobabble) in White Noise, but he seems surprisingly disengaged here. His spotlighted New Economy icon, Eric, doesn't work, either as a genius financier (he is all about gadgetry, not exchange-there's no love of the deal in his 'frozen heart') or a thinker. The threats posed by the contingencies that he faces cannot lever him out of his recalcitrant one-dimensionality. DeLillo is surely an American master, but this time out, he is doodling."

- Described as "impossibly bad-ass," check out John Cusack as Edgar Allen Poe in The Raven, from director James McTeigue (V for Vendetta). The film also stars pretty Brit Alice Eve (She's Out of My League) and handsome Brit Luke Evans (Tamara Drewe).

Thompson on Hollywood



6 Comments

  • jj | January 22, 2011 8:41 AMReply

    John Cusack as Edgar Allen Poe? Now that one I don't believe.

  • renate | January 22, 2011 1:49 AMReply

    Pattinson proved himself being the Leading Man..Remember Me was trashed because of the Story line not for Rob's performance and the Movie gets the last laugh with drawing 55Mil for a small Indie film.. ( most underrated Movie of 2010...Movie Line) The portrayal of a young conflicted Dali and the hilarious performance in "How to be" convince me that Rob will up to Cronenbergs challenge. This is an interesting Book and I know Rob is smart enough to transform himself into this Role. Keira will bring another draw ...

  • sophia savage | January 21, 2011 9:05 AMReply

    Comments directed at Anne can be redirected to me.

    Pattinson, at 24, is a young choice to play the 28-year-old character in "Cosmopolis." He and Knightley (a wonderful actress) could make a fine (and very good looking) pair in the film. We'd be interested to see a more mature performance from Pattinson, who is best known for playing a forever 17-year-old vampire in the "Twilight" series, and teenage Cedric in the "Harry Potter" films. He didn't prove himself a leading man in "Remember Me" (http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1211619-remember_me/). I believe he is playing a 23-year-old in "Water for Elephants," and we're excited to see how that goes in April.

    And we always look forward to Cronenberg's films. This is no exception.

  • John Devine | January 21, 2011 8:15 AMReply

    "The production is aiming younger (and Twilight “RPattz” fans could pull some numbers), which seems odd for the director of A History of Violence, Eastern Promises and the upcoming A Dangerous Method. "

    Really Anne? I expect this with the nerdy hack bloggers out there but not with you. For someone who can list the last few Cronenberg films without looking them up (I assume), I would expect that you would also know that the characters in De Lillo's book are young 20's and this turn of events actually fits the story and is not some cash grab for Twilight fans (insult to Cronenberg intended?). How about Cronenberg knows what he's doing, knows the source material backwards and forwards, doesn't give an eff about what people think and feels Pattinson and Knightley can shine in a script that Farrel described as "wonderful." Hmmmmmm.

  • Barney | January 21, 2011 7:52 AMReply

    Holly's right, you obviously haven't read De Lillo's book. The new cast fits the story so much better. Nobody has to like that inane twilight crap, but it doesn't mean Pattinson can't pull off the sleazy finance wunderkind character. On the contrary, he looks perfect for the role. And Keira is equally perfect for playing the airhead wife.

  • Holly | January 21, 2011 3:14 AMReply

    The Cosmopolis leads are meant to be in their 20's If anything the production was originally aiming too old with Farrell and Cotillard. Your face off comment is worthy of the tackier bloggers and not a respected entertainment hack.

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