Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Ranking the 5 Best Editing Oscar Nominees Ranking the 5 Best Editing Oscar Nominees Kristen Stewart Is First American Actress Nominated for César Awards in 30 Years; 'Saint Laurent' Leads with Ten Kristen Stewart Is First American Actress Nominated for César Awards in 30 Years; 'Saint Laurent' Leads with Ten How They Sustained the Times Square Momentum in 'Birdman' VIDEO How They Sustained the Times Square Momentum in 'Birdman' VIDEO 6 Things to Know About Sexy Sundance Breakout 'Diary of a Teenage Girl,' Part of Sundance's Women's New Wave 6 Things to Know About Sexy Sundance Breakout 'Diary of a Teenage Girl,' Part of Sundance's Women's New Wave Sundance Raves About Ewan McGregor as Jesus and the Devil in 'Last Days in the Desert' Sundance Raves About Ewan McGregor as Jesus and the Devil in 'Last Days in the Desert' Oscar Loves Diseases and Disorders: 6 Contenders and the Hard Truths They Don't (or Do) Ignore Oscar Loves Diseases and Disorders: 6 Contenders and the Hard Truths They Don't (or Do) Ignore Watch: Jason Segel on Playing David Foster Wallace in Sundance's 'End of the Tour' (Exclusive Interview) Watch: Jason Segel on Playing David Foster Wallace in Sundance's 'End of the Tour' (Exclusive Interview) Filmmakers, Give Us Your Numbers! Sundance and Cinereach Unveil The Transparency Project Filmmakers, Give Us Your Numbers! Sundance and Cinereach Unveil The Transparency Project Sundance Market Explodes with 'Me and Earl and the Dying Girl' and 'Diary of a Teenage Girl' Sundance Market Explodes with 'Me and Earl and the Dying Girl' and 'Diary of a Teenage Girl' Screen Actors Guild Awards: 'Birdman' Takes Ensemble, Julianne Moore and Eddie Redmayne Win Leads Screen Actors Guild Awards: 'Birdman' Takes Ensemble, Julianne Moore and Eddie Redmayne Win Leads Top Ten Takeaways: Polarizing 'American Sniper' Speeds Past $200 Million; Lopez Trounces Depp Top Ten Takeaways: Polarizing 'American Sniper' Speeds Past $200 Million; Lopez Trounces Depp Arthouse Audit: Panic Time? 'Mommy,' 'Red Army,' 'Black Sea,' 'Cake,' 'Duke of Burgundy' All Disappoint Arthouse Audit: Panic Time? 'Mommy,' 'Red Army,' 'Black Sea,' 'Cake,' 'Duke of Burgundy' All Disappoint 2015 PGA Winners: 'Birdman' Steals 'Boyhood''s Awards Season Thunder 2015 PGA Winners: 'Birdman' Steals 'Boyhood''s Awards Season Thunder Watch: Nicole Kidman Talks 'Strangerland' at Sundance (Exclusive Video Interview) Watch: Nicole Kidman Talks 'Strangerland' at Sundance (Exclusive Video Interview) Sundance Acquisitions Market Heats Up with 'The Bronze' and 
'The Witch' Sundance Acquisitions Market Heats Up with 'The Bronze' and 'The Witch' Sundance: 5 Things to Expect From Alex Gibney's Damning Scientology Doc 'Going Clear' Sundance: 5 Things to Expect From Alex Gibney's Damning Scientology Doc 'Going Clear' Watch: Meet the Women of 'Birdman' (Exclusive 4-Minute Featurette) Watch: Meet the Women of 'Birdman' (Exclusive 4-Minute Featurette) Watch: Hitchcock's Thwarted Holocaust Documentary Comes to HBO Watch: Hitchcock's Thwarted Holocaust Documentary Comes to HBO Best Actor Oscar Predictions 2015 UPDATED Best Actor Oscar Predictions 2015 UPDATED Oscar Predictions 2015 Oscar Predictions 2015

Oscar Watch: 'Lone Survivor' Is Peter Berg's Bid to Redeem Himself After 'Battleship'

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood August 16, 2013 at 3:46PM

Peter Berg directed "Battleship" for Universal Pictures so that he could direct the movie he cared about, "Lone Survivor," which he has been working on for five years. Universal is giving "Lone Survivor" an Oscar qualifying run on December 27 in advance of a January 14 wide release. Like "Argo" and "Zero Dark Thirty," it is based on a true story.
3
'Lone Survivor'
'Lone Survivor'
'Battleship'
'Battleship'

Peter Berg directed "Battleship" for Universal Pictures so that he could direct the movie he cared about, "Lone Survivor," which he has been working on for five years. Universal is giving "Lone Survivor" an Oscar qualifying run on December 27 in advance of a January 14 wide release. Like Oscar-winners "Argo" and "Zero Dark Thirty," it is based on a true story.

The story of how Berg, whose 2004 "Friday Night Lights" inspired the landmark TV series, wound up directing "Battleship" at Universal has to do with a studio that is loyal to a director they believe in--even when a badly-conceived Hasbro tie-in movie winds up losing more than $100 million. Universal also believed in Berg's $72.5 million Iraq war movie "The Kingdom" (2007) which while well-directed, at an $86 million worldwide gross was a costly disappointment. Luckily their $150-million 2008 "Hancock," starring Will Smith, delivered $624 million worldwide. 

Peter Berg directs Mark Wahlberg in 'Lone Survivor'
Universal Pictures Peter Berg directs Mark Wahlberg in 'Lone Survivor'

Former actor Berg, 51, who probably wishes he could have directed "Lone Survivor" first instead of the misbegotten "Battleship," is considered to be a writer-director with filmmaking chops, and what better way to redeem himself than to adapt a true Navy SEAL story and work for scale (the DGA minimum of $17,000 a week) directing a modest-budget movie. He also welcomed a New York Times reporter to the New Mexico set to write up a lovely profile in the Magazine. 

$40 million "Lone Survivor" was shot in 42 days with Mark Wahlberg, Emile Hirsch, Eric Bana, Ben Foster and Taylor Kitsch starring for cut-rate pay. He adapted a true story, the failed June 28, 2005 mission "Operation Redwing," when four members of SEAL Team 10 were sent on a dangerous mission in rugged Afghanistan mountain terrain to capture or kill Taliban leader Ahmad Shahd. Only one member of the team, Marcus Luttrell, survived to write a memoir of his fallen comrades.

This article is related to: Lone Survivor, Peter Berg, Universal Pictures, Mark Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch, Awards, Oscars


E-Mail Updates