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Thompson on Hollywood

Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained: Casting is Key; DiCaprio In, Smith Out? Who Will Play Django?

Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained: Casting is Key; DiCaprio In, Smith Out? Who Will Play Django?
Quentin Tarantino is known for his unorthodox, out-of-the-box casting choices, from John Travolta, Robert Forster and Pam Grier to Brad Pitt, Kurt Russell, and David Carradine. Now Leonardo DiCaprio (who Tarantino chased for the role of Hans Landa in Inglourious Basterds) is in talks to play the villain in spaghetti western Django Unchained. He would play evil Mississippi Candyland plantation owner Calvin Candie, who also runs the Cleopatra Club that features sexually abused female slaves and mandingos forced to fight in death matches.
  • By Anne Thompson and Sophia Savage
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  • June 8, 2011 4:55 AM
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  • 23 Comments

Columbia, Moritz to Remake Japanese Hit Big Man Japan

Columbia Pictures and Original Film producer Neal H. Moritz (Fast Five) plan to develop a remake to potential franchise Big Man Japan, a 2007 hit in Japan that was released stateside in 2009. Columbia optioned both remake and sequel rights of the Hitoshi Matsumoto bumbling monster comedy from Yoshimoto Kogyo Co, Ltd, and their affiliate Yoshimoto Creative Agency, Ltd. Screenwriters Phil Hay & Matt Manfredi (Clash of the Titans) are doing the adaptation.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 6, 2011 6:17 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Anna Karenina Update: Joe Wright Casts Knightley, Law, MacFadyen, Macdonald, Ronan, Johnson

The impressive cast of Joe Wright's upcoming adaptation of Tolstoy's Anna Karenina (adapted by Tom Stoppard) is as follows: Keira Knightley (Anna), Jude Law (her husband, Karenin), Matthew MacFadyen (Oblonsky), Kelly Macdonald (his wife, Dolly), Olivia Williams (Countess Vronskaya, Vronsky's mother), Saoirse Ronan (Kitty, Dolly's sister), Aaron Johnson (Anna's lover, Vronsky), Andrea Riseborough (Princess Betsy) and Domhnall Gleeson (Levin).
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 6, 2011 5:16 AM
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  • 6 Comments

Scorsese's Furious Love for Taylor & Burton: The Impossible Casting, Love Letters, Video

Martin Scorsese and Paramount have won the bidding to develop a film about Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton's tumultuous and passionate romance, based on Sam Kashner and Nancy Schoenberger's book, Furious Love. Should Taylor's estate give its blessing (as Burton's has), Scorsese will then choose a screenwriter to kick things off. Deadline says others who chased rights to the book include Oscar-winners Natalie Portman and screenwriter David Seidler (The King's Speech). [Deadline]
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 2, 2011 4:19 AM
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  • 6 Comments

The Hobbit Pics Get Official Titles and Release Dates

As is his wont, filmmaker Peter Jackson has posted news on The Hobbit's Facebook page of the two-parter's release dates --December 14, 2012 for Part One of the J.R.R. Tolkien classic prequel to The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and December 13, 2013 for Part Two.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 31, 2011 12:44 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Dark Shadows Update: Tim Burton Confirms "Weird Tone," Not in 3-D; Director's Exhibit Opens at LACMA

Tim Burton fans in Los Angeles can rejoice now that his LACMA exhibit is open (more details below, and here's a slideshow). The Wrap took the chance to chat with the director at the exhibition's opening. Of his Dark Shadows adaptation (currently in production), Burton says, "we’re sort of getting right in there." He confirms the project has a "weird tone," and will be somewhat soap-opera-esque (like the 1960s TV show that precedes it), but adds:
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 31, 2011 4:57 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Dueling Snow Whites: Relativity's Grimm vs. Universal's Huntsman, The Casts So Far

Dueling Snow Whites: Relativity's Grimm vs. Universal's Huntsman, The Casts So Far
UPDATE: One point for Relativity's untitled Snow White! Finally, some good news for the film comes in the form of Sean Bean. He will play the King whose kingdom is destroyed by the Evil Queen (Julia Roberts). Relativity is now touting this as a family-friendly Snow White, since they already know Universal's Snow White and the Huntsman is going to outdo them in the creative edge department. The film is currently shooting in Montreal.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 27, 2011 11:40 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Indie Producer Gary Gilbert Talks Mark Ruffalo, Margaret, Kids Are All Right, New Pics

Indie Producer Gary Gilbert Talks Mark Ruffalo, Margaret, Kids Are All Right, New Pics
The movie business is rife with starry-eyed businessmen who bring their wealth to Hollywood with hopes of making good. Most of them last for a few years until they run aground on too many failed opportunities. It takes a mix of grit, acumen, luck and yes, taste, to stay the course. Car salesman James Robinson's Morgan Creek lasted decades before the market caught up with him and he canceled his bankrupt international division's famed Cannes Fest Le Moulin de Mougins distributors brunch. Real estate mogul Bob Yari was riding high on Oscar-winner Crash and sleeper hit The Illusionist before he ran out of cash. Wall Street hotshots Victor Kubicek and Derek Anderson acquired the rights to Terminator and put Salvation into production before they wound up on the wrong end of a batch of lawsuits.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 26, 2011 5:12 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Sony Signs Easy A's Will Gluck to Film and TV Production Deal

Even before Screen Gems' domestic hit Easy A earned $75 million and broke out star Emma Stone, Will Gluck was a rising writer-director. With that film, he catapulted onto the hot list, and having seen Screen Gems' upcoming Friends with Benefits, starring Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis, Sony Entertainment's Michael Lynton and Amy Pascal have nabbed him for a two-year film and television development and production pact.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 25, 2011 6:09 AM
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Relativity Moves Up Untitled Snow White Ahead of Universal's Snow White and the Huntsman

In a dangerous game of chicken between dueling Snow White projects, Relativity Media is moving up Tarsem Singh's untitled Snow White film to March 16 from June 29, 2012, jumping ahead of Universal, which had pushed forward its $160 million Snow White and the Huntsman, directed by Rupert Sanders and starring Charlize Theron, Kristen Stewart and Chris Hemsworth, to June 1 from December 2012. Neither film is even under way as yet.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 24, 2011 8:19 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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