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IN THE WORKS: Butterfield for Ender's Game, Arterton & Ronan Vampires for Jordan, Soderbergh's Pill & Hanks Slate

Thompson on Hollywood By Sophia Savage | Thompson on Hollywood November 30, 2011 at 1:35PM

IN THE WORKS: Butterfield for Ender's Game, Arterton & Ronan Vampires for Jordan, Soderbergh's Pill & Hanks Slate
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Butterfield, Arterton, Ronan
Butterfield, Arterton, Ronan

"Hugo" star Asa Butterfield has landed the lead in "Ender's Game," an adaptation of Orson Scott Card's sci-fi future-set novels. in which supernaturally gifted "Ender Wiggin" battles aliens--along with the rest of mankind. Summit Entertainment is co-financing and releasing the film in Spring 2013. Versatile South African Gavin Hood ("Tsotsi," "Rendition," "X-Men Origins: Wolverine") will direct from his own adapted screenplay.

-The latest news in the revolving door of Steven Soderbergh projects is psychopharmacology thriller "The Bitter Pill," which he'll helm alongside co-producers Scott Z. Burns (who wrote the script) and Greg Jacobs and Lorenzo di Bonaventura (Soderbergh, Burns and Jacobs made "Contagion" and "The Informant"). This means the director has two films awaiting release ("Haywire" - January 20, "Magic Mike" - June 29) and at least two in the works - "Pill" and Liberace biopic "Behind the Candellabra."

-Neil Jordan ("Interview With A Vampire") is jumping back on the vampire train with "Byzantium," about a vampire mother (Gemma Arterton) who wants to bring her daughter (Saoirse Ronan) to the dark side as well. The cast also includes Sam Riley, Caleb Landry Jones, Bradley Jones and Daniel Mays. Moira Buffini ("Jane Eyre," "Tamara Drewe") penned the script.

-The verdict is still out on whether 2011 will be a good or bad year for Tom Hanks. Stephen Daldry's "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" opens this Christmas, but his directing and starring vehicle "Larry Crowne" left a bad taste. Now Hanks is developing another strong role for himself: his Playtone and Universal have acquired rights to Erik Larson's non-fiction book "In the Garden of the Beasts: Love, Terror and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin." It chronicles the experiences of American ambassador William E. Dodd's family and the Third Reich in 1930s Germany. Hanks is currently shooting "Cloud Atlas" with director Tom Tykwer and co-stars Ben Whishaw, Hugo Weaving, Ben Sturgess, Hugh Grant and Halle Berry.  Paul Greengrass' "A Captain's Duty," currently in pre-production, will presumably come after that. Hanks has over a dozen projects in various stages of production, mostly as producing vehicles.

"Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close"
"Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close"


 

This article is related to: News, IN THE WORKS, Headliners, Genres, Directors


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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.